Friday, December 31, 2010

CHICKEN BIRYANI





This is not a too spicy or too oily biryani. Only 1/4 tsp of ghee is used for this biryani. Then the only oil used is for frying onions. You can also fry onions in microwave or use store bought fried onions and skip the whole process of frying in oil.
Then I marinated chicken overnight in refrigerator.In this way, all the masalas was fully incorporated with the chicken.I usually prefer marinating overnight in refrigerator all meat dishes I cook.In doing so it will not only taste good but also saves a lot of time.






INGREDIENTS


Chicken---------------------- 1 lbs
Basmati rice----------------- 1 1/2 cups
Mint leaves------------------- 1/4 cup,roughly chopped
Coriander/cilantro leaves-1/4 cup,roughly chopped
Green chilly-------------------1 sliced
Tomato-------------------------1medium sized,seed removed and sliced
Biryani masala---------------1 tsp


For marination
Ginger garlic paste------- 1 1/2 tbsp
Red chilly powder--------- 1tsp
Coriander powder--------- 2 tsp
Garam masala powder--- 1/4 tsp
Turmeric powder-----------1/2 tsp
Chicken masala powder--1 tsp
Yogurt/curd------------------ 1/2cup
lemon/lime juice--------------1 1/2 tsp
salt as needed


For cooking rice
Warm water------------------ 2 1/2 cups
Ghee----------------------------- 1/4 tsp
Cinnamon stick--------------- 1 inch piece
Cardamom -------------------- 2
Cloves----------------------------2
Bay leaf--------------------------1
Saunf/perumjeerakam-------1/4 tsp
Salt as needed


For frying onion
Onion------------------------------ 1 1/2 cup,sliced
Rice flour-------------------------1 tbsp
Oil for deep frying


METHOD
  1. Mix all the marinating ingredients and marinate chicken overnight in refrigerator.
  2. Next fry the onions. For this first remove the water from the sliced onions using a tissue paper and mix a tbsp of rice flour to it.This helps to absorb excess water and will also make it crispy.Then heat oil and fry the onions till it becomes golden brown in color. Drain off the excess oil from fried onions and keep it aside.
  3. Wash and soak rice in warm water for 30 minutes. Soaking rice in warm water helps the rice to cook fast and evenly.It also prevents rice from sticking together.
  4. Now in a vessel add 1/4 tsp of ghee and add whole garam masalas (cinnamon,clove,cardamom,saunf,bay leaves).
  5. Drain off the water from rice and add it to the above vessel and slightly mix it for 2 minutes in low flame. This also prevents rice from sticking together.Note: Do not mix hard and break the rice.
  6. Now add water and needed salt and cook it covered. Rice should be half cooked.
  7. Meanwhile cook chicken in a pressure cooker. Add very little water for cooking chicken if necessary.
  8. Now in a flat bottomed vessel add the cooked chicken.
  9. Add biryani masala,green chilly,sliced tomato, mint leaves and coriander leaves to it and cook it till the water is evaporated.
  10. Now add half cooked rice to the above pan and mix it .Check the seasoning and cover it and cook till the rice is fully done. The flame should be in low.
  11. Once the rice is cooked perfectly add fried onions to it and slightly mix it and transfer to a serving bowl.
  12. Garnish with some fried onions,mint leaves,ghee roasted cashews,kismis,coriander leaves etc.    
 Note: Usually for cooking plain rice,the ratio of rice: water is 1:2. But for cooking biryani it is always 1:1 as there is enough water in the biryani marination and also in soaked rice.


Step 1


Step 2

Step 5


Step 8


Step 9


Step 10

















Tuesday, December 28, 2010

MINCED CHICKEN MASALA AND CHICKEN SANDWICH






This dish goes as an excellent side dish for rice,chapathi or any roti,puri,dosa,idly and also as sandwich. 

INGREDIENTS
Minced chicken/Murgh ka kheema-------- 1 lbs
Capsicum------------------------------------------ 1/4 cup,chopped
Onion-----------------------------------------------  1/2 cup,chopped finely
Green chilly---------------------------------------- 1 or to taste,slit lengthwise
Tomato---------------------------------------------- 1 medium size,chopped 
Ginger------------------------------------------------1 inch piece,finely chopped
Garlic-------------------------------------------------3 large cloves,finely chopped
Mint leaves------------------------------------------8 leaves,chopped
Chicken masala powder-------------------------1 tsp
Red chilly powder--------------------------------- 1tsp
Coriander powder--------------------------------- 2tsp
Turmeric powder-----------------------------------1/2 tsp
Garam masala powder----------------------------1/4 tsp
Oil-------------------------------------------------------1 tsp
Coriander/cilantro leaves-------------------------1 tbsp,chopped
Black pepper powder------------------------------ a pinch
Salt as needed.

METHOD
  1. In a medium heat non stick pan add minced chicken and cook it by stirring.Add needed salt and pepper.You can add few drops oil if needed but don't add water.
  2. Once the chicken is fully cooked,keep it aside. 
  3. Next add a tsp of oil to a medium heat pan and saute onion,green chilly,ginger and garlic.
  4. Then add tomato and cook till it becomes soft.
  5. Next add capsicum and cook it. 
  6. Then add turmeric powder, red chilly powder,coriander powder, chicken masala powder and garam masala powder.Saute till the raw smell goes. Do this in low flame.
  7. Then add chicken to it. Add little water (1/4 cup)and needed salt to it.
  8. Check the seasoning.Cover and cook it in low flame till all the masalas are fully incorporated with the chicken.
  9. Once done, add chopped mint and coriander leaves and mix it good.
  10. Transfer to a serving bowl.
Options:This is can be stuffed inside roti/chapathi or dosa,idiyappam etc.
Step 1

Step 3 to 5


Step 9


For Sandwich:
  1. Place 1/4 tsp butter on one side of bread slice and place it in a hot pan.The same way do with another slice of bread.
  2. Toss the bread till it becomes crunchy and slightly brown in one side while the other side is soft and tender.
  3. Next place a slice of cheese and the above made minced chicken masala in the soft portion and cover with other slice of bread.
  4. Press it slightly and enjoy.
Note: The outer side of bread will be crunchy while the inner side will be soft.

                                    




Monday, December 27, 2010

TAPIOCA AND RED BEANS PUZHUKKU (Thiruvathira kappa puzhukku)





Last week for Thiruvathira, I made this Puzhukku. Thiruvathira is a full moon day that comes in the Malayalam month Dhanu.In different parts it is celebrated in different way. In my family,all married women will take bath early morning before sunrise and will avoid rice,onion,garlic and non-veg foods.We usually prepare this puzhukku for lunch.The other special that we make on this day is the moong dal/paruppu payasam.


INGREDIENTS


Tapioca----------------------- 1 medium sized
Red beans-------------------- 1/4 cup
Grated coconut--------------1/4 cup
Green chilly------------------ 1
Dried red chilly-------------- 1
Mustard seeds--------------- 1/4 tsp
Oil------------------------------1tsp
Curry leaves------------------a sprig
Turmeric powder------------1/2 tsp
Salt as needed.


METHOD

  1. Soak red beans in water for 3hours and pressure cook it with needed salt. Drain off the water and keep it aside.
  2. Trim off the skin of tapioca and cut in to pieces. Pressure cook it with 1/2 tsp turmeric powder and needed salt.Drain off the excess water and cut the cooked tapioca in to desired size.Keep it aside.
  3. Now in a medium heat pan add a tsp of oil and splutter mustard seeds,dried red chilly and curry leaves.
  4. Next add grated coconut and saute till a nice aroma comes. Then add green chilly and cooked tapioca and red beans.
  5. Mix it good and transfer to a serving bowl.

Note: I didn't add onion and garlic to it as it was made for thiruvathira,you can add it if you like.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

COCONUT BURFI



 Hi friends,thanks a lot for your encouragement,this is my 100th post and so thought of making my daughter's favorite sweet.


INGREDIENTS


Freshly grated coconut-------------2 cups
Milk------------------------------------2 cups
Sugar-----------------------------------2 cups
Ghee------------------------------------1 tbsp
Almonds or any nuts-----------------to garnish
Cardamom-----------------------------5 (powder it with little sugar using mortar and pestle)
Red food color-----------------------a pinch (optional) You can also use a drop of beetroot water instead.


METHOD

  1. In a medium heat pan add a tbsp of ghee and roast freshly grated coconut till a nice aroma comes and is light golden color.
  2. Then add milk and bring it to boil.
  3. Add sugar and keep mixing.
  4. Then add cardamom powder and food color if using.
  5. Keep stirring till all moisture is absorbed and it becomes thick and separated.
  6. Switch off the stove and transfer it to a plate coated with ghee to prevent stickiness.
  7. Allow it to cool and cut in desired shape.Garnish with Almonds or any nuts.Keep it in refrigerator for half an hour and enjoy. 
Freshly grated coconut


Step 1


Step 2 to 3


Step 4 to 5


Step 6



Step 7

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

TAPIOCA PARATHA(Tapioca stuffed Indian flat bread)








INGREDIENTS


For stuffing
Tapioca/Kappa/Sabudana---------------1 
Onion----------------------------------------- 1/2 cup,finely chopped
Green chilly----------------------------------1,finely chopped
Ginger-----------------------------------------1/2 inch piece,finely chopped
Turmeric powder---------------------------1/2 tsp
Oil---------------------------------------------- 1tsp
Salt to taste


For dough
Wheat flour---------------------------------- 2cups
Warm water----------------------------------3/4 cup or as needed
Salt----------------------------------------------1/8 tsp
Melted butter or ghee----------------------1 tsp


METHOD

  1. Trim off the skin from the tapioca and cut in to pieces.Wash it thoroughly and pressure cook it with needed salt and a pinch of turmeric powder.
  2. Drain the water from cooked tapioca and mash it.Keep it aside.
  3. Now in a medium heat pan add a tsp of oil and saute finely chopped onions,green chilly and ginger.Then add turmeric powder,mashed tapioca to it and mix good till all moisture is evaporated. Check the seasoning.
  4. Transfer this to a bowl and mash it good and keep it aside.
  5. Meanwhile,knead the dough.For this,mix wheat flour and salt in a bowl.Then add warm water and knead  thoroughly.Apply ghee or butter and knead again .Cover the dough with a damp cloth and let it sit for 15 minutes. 
  6. Now make small balls of it and roll it to a small,thick circle using a rolling pin.
  7. Keep the tapioca mixture in its center and cover it by slightly pressing the edges together in the center.
  8. Dust with extra dry flour and roll it equally .
  9. Heat a griddle and place a paratha in it and slightly press with a spatula and cook.Flip it to other side and cook in the same way.
  10. Once done apply ghee or butter on top of it and serve.
Step 3
Saute onion,green chilly,ginger


Step 3
Add turmeric powder,mashed tapioca


Step 4
Transfer to a bowl and mash it good


Step 9
Cook the parathas




CHICKEN AND BULGUR WHEAT SOUP





This is a hot,spicy and healthy soup and is perfect for cool winter. It is quite easy to prepare too.


INGREDIENTS


Minced chicken------------------1 cup
Bulgur wheat--------------------- 1/4 cup
Lettuce leaves-------------------- 1/4 cup
Carrots----------------------------- 2 tbsp,cut round wise
Beans------------------------------- 2 tbsp, cut in to small pieces
Chicken stock-------------------- 2 cups
Onion-------------------------------  1/4 cup,chopped
Tomato----------------------------- 1 medium sized, chopped
Oil------------------------------------ 1tsp
Chicken masala powder-------- 1tsp or to taste
Red chilly powder----------------- 1/4 tsp or to taste
Ginger-------------------------------- 1 inch piece, chopped finely
Garlic--------------------------------- 2 large cloves, chopped finely
Garam masala powder----------- a pinch
Black pepper powder------------- a pinch
Mint leaves--------------------------- 4
Salt as needed
Water as needed


METHOD

  1. Wash and soak bulgur wheat for 3 hours and pressure cook it with 1:1 ratio of water
  2. Now in a medium heat vessel add oil and saute onion,ginger,garlic and minced meat.
  3. Add needed salt and pepper. Keep stirring and cook till the chicken is fully done.
  4. Add tomato to it and saute.
  5. Next add chicken masala powder,red chilly powder,garam masala,lettuce leaves,carrot,beans and mint leaves.
  6. Then add chicken stock and cook it. You can add additional water if necessary.
  7. Check the seasoning and add cooked bulgur wheat to it and bring it to a boil.
  8. Switch off the flame and transfer to a serving bowl. Garnish with chopped rosemary leaves or  can also use spring onions.
  9. Serve hot.

Step 2 to 3


Step 4 to 5

Step 6 to 7





Sunday, December 19, 2010

PORK ROAST/ PORK VARATTIYATHU





INGREDIENTS


Pork------------------- 1 lbs


For grinding
Onion(small or large)-----------------1/2 cup,roughly sliced
Ginger-----------------------------------1 1/2 inch piece
Garlic------------------------------------1 small size pod full
Mint/pudina leaves--------------------8 to 10 leaves
Turmeric powder--------------------- 1/2 tsp
Red chilly powder---------------------1 tsp
Coriander powder-------------------- 1 tbsp
Garam masala powder---------------1/4 tsp
Oil---------------------------------------- 1/4 tsp
Water------------------------------------1/4 cup
Salt as needed


For pan roasting
Onion------------------------------------1/2 cup,chopped
Tomato--------------------------------- 1 medium sized,sliced
Chicken masala powder-------------- 1tsp
Green chilly----------------------------- 2,sliced
Oil-----------------------------------------1 tsp
Coconut slices---------------------------1 1/2 tbsp
Salt as needed


METHOD

  1. In a medium heat pan add 1/4 tsp of oil and slightly roast all the ingredients for grinding (onion,ginger,garlic,turmeric powder,red chilly powder,coriander powder,garam masala powder and mint leaves)till the raw smell goes.
  2. Now grind this to a smooth paste with needed salt and  1/4 cup water.
  3. Next add the ground paste to a pressure cooker and add pork pieces to it. Mix it good.Check the seasoning of the ground paste and cook it. Do not add any water for cooking as there is enough water in the ground masala.
  4. Now in a medium heat flat bottomed pan add a tsp of oil and saute all the pan roasting ingredients(onion,tomato,green chilly) till it becomes soft.
  5. Then add chicken masala powder to it.
  6. Now add the pork cooked water. (Once the pork is fully cooked in a pressure cooker,there will be water in it.The water from the ground masala and the fat of pork.Add this water first to the pan and then add pork pieces.This helps the gravy to get dried up fast)
  7. Cook till the gravy becomes thick. Check the seasoning.
  8. Now add pork pieces to it and keep stirring. Keep the flame in high.This step is a great exercise for hands :) 
  9.  Keep stirring till all moisture in it is evaporated and each piece of pork is dried and separated.
  10. Now in another pan add 1/4 tsp oil and roast the coconut pieces till it becomes slightly crunchy.
  11. Transfer the Pork roasted/varattiyathu to a serving bowl and add roasted coconut pieces on top of it and slightly mix.
  12. Granish with mint leaves and cilantro/coriander leaves.
Pork pressure cooked with ground masala


Step 4


Step 6


Step 8


Step 9


Step 10
Roast coconut pieces.















Friday, December 17, 2010

WHEAT BANANA MUFFIN





This is a very healthy muffin with simple ingredients and very easy to prepare. Kids sure will love this muffin.It is a good breakfast or a healthy evening snack.
I used Pillsbury wheat flour ( the usual chapathi flour) for making this muffin.Also I used only a tbsp of powdered sugar as there was enough sweetness in the banana.


INGREDIENTS
Wheat flour----------------- 1 cup
Ripe Banana-----------------1
Powdered sugar-------------1 tbsp
Eggs---------------------------2
Baking powder---------------1/2 tsp
Cinnamon powder-----------1/8 tsp
Raisins------------------------1 tbsp,chopped
Cashews/any nuts------------chopped, for garnish
Butter--------------------------1 tbsp,melted


METHOD
  1. Mix together wheat flour and baking powder.
  2. Then add mashed banana to it and mix good.
  3. Next add egg to it and mix it good.
  4. Add powdered sugar,cinnamon powder,raisins and melted butter to it and mix everything good.
  5. Now grease a non stick muffin tray with butter and dust with dry wheat flour for not sticking.You can use non stick spray instead.
  6. Pour the batter to it and add chopped nuts on top of the batter.
  7. Meanwhile preheat oven at 325F. 
  8. Bake it in a preheated oven at 325F for 30 minutes.
  9. Run a toothpick or skewer or a fork through the center of muffin and if it comes out clean without sticking,it is perfectly baked.


Note: You can use vanilla essence instead of cinnamon powder.


wheat flour,eggs,mashed banana


Step 6


Step 8









I am sending this to  the event started by Priya and hosted by Aipi of  US Masala


Thursday, December 16, 2010

POMEGRANATE AND BANANA SHAKE





INGREDIENTS


Pomegranate ------------- 1/2 cup
Banana--------------------- 1
Cool milk------------------ 2 cups
Sugar----------------------- 1 tbsp or to taste
Vanilla ice cream (optional)


METHOD

  1. In a juicer blend the pomegranate seeds. Filter it through a sieve.
  2. Now blend together filtered pomegranate juice,milk,sugar and banana.
  3. Pour this to a glass and place a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top of it .
  4. Enjoy this cool,tangy,sweet shake.
Options: You can add ice cubes to it if needed.



I am sending this to the event started by Priya and hosted by Aipi of  US Masala


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