Quick Cooking – Microwave Dhokla

That’s what a Microwave is there for – to make life easier. I am always looking for ways to cut out the cooking time (and cooking itself, some days), and my MW is the partner in this crime.  Without the MW, I would have shut down the kitchen itself long back.

When I bought the MW, we received Nita Mehta’s IFB Microwave Cookbook as a compliment. The book sits on top of the Microwave all the time. I tried the Khaman Dhokla recipe from there. The dhokla was soft, nice, and absolutely easy to make. I wish I had used a larger vessel, though.


  • Besan / Gram Flour/ Chickpea Flour : 1 1/2 cups
  • Water                                                                : 1 cup
  • Oil                                                                       : 1 tbsp
  • Turmeric Powder                                         : 1/2 tsp
  • Green Chillies & Ginger paste                  : 2 tsp
  • Salt                                                                     : 1 tsp
  • Sugar                                                                 : 1 tsp
  • Cooking Soda (Soda Bi carb)                   : 1/4 tsp
  • Eno Fruit salt                                                 : 1 1/2 tsp (I used 1 sachet)
  • Lemon Juice                                                   : 2 tsp

For Tempering

  • Oil                               : 2 tbsp
  • Mustard Seeds      : 1 tsp
  • Green Chillies        : 2-3, slit into long pieces
  • White Vinegar       : 1/4 cup
  • Water                        : 3/4 cup
  • Sugar                         : 1 tbsp


  1. Sift the gram flour in a big bowl. Add water, oil, turmeric powder, salt, sugar, chilli & ginger paste. Mix to get a smooth, lump free  batter.
  2. Add the cooking soda, eno fruit salt and lemon juice. Mix thoroughly. The volume increases once you add the fruit salt. Pour this into a well greased, flat microwave proof bowl.
  3. Microwave uncovered for 6 minutes. Keep aside.
  4. In a separate microwave proof bowl, add the oil, chillies and mustard seeds. Cover this and cook for 1 1/2 minutes.
  5. Once the seeds crack, add the water, sugar and vinegar and cook uncovered for 4 minutes.
  6. Pour this over the dhokla and wait for 15- 20 minutes till the water is absorbed.
  7. Cut into square pieces and serve.

Sending this to Microwave Easy Cooking, for this month’s theme of Party Appetizers, and Susan’s popular My Legume Love Affair.


A twist to Oats

After attending a wedding in the family, here I am this morning, staring at an empty fridge. Feasting on good food and good company for two continuous days does make you sorry to be back to normal life. But I guess, you can’t have too much of a good thing. So, back to my empty fridge and my empty stomach.

Then I remembered about the packet of Quaker Oats. Got busy with it, added a bit of this and that. Had a feeling that this is heading for a disaster, so browsed and found a quick and easy Oats Dosa recipe. Re-adjusted things according to the recipe and Voila, had a great soft dosa for breakfast!


For Dosa:

  • Oats : 1 cup (Dry roasted till fragrant and powdered)
  • Semolina/Rava : 1/4 cup (Dry roasted)
  • Whole wheat flour/Atta : 1/2 cup
  • Onion : 1, chopped fine
  • Beans : 3-4, chopped very fine
  • Carrot : 2 tbsp, chopped very fine or grated
  • Green Chillies : 2, chopped very fine
  • Curry leaves : a few, chopped
  • Pepper : 1 tsp
  • Salt : to taste
  • Water : to make the batter
  • Oil : to make dosas


  1. Mix the powdered oats, rava,salt, pepper and wholewheat flour. Whisk.
  2. Add chopped onions, beans, carrots, chillies, curry leaves and water to form a thin, pan cake like, batter. Rest the batter for 5 minutes.
  3. Pour a ladle of the batter on a hot skillet in an ‘O’ shape. The batter will flow towards the center. Add a bit of batter, if gaps form. Since the batter is thin, you cannot spread it the way we usually make dosas. Add oil around the dosa and flip and cook the other side.  I am not an expert, so I make small dosas to avoid tearing.
  4. Serve with chutney.

For Tomato Coriander Chutney: 

  • Onion : 1, cut into slices
  • Tomato : 1, cut into chunks
  • Coriander leaves : 2-3 tbsp, washed and chopped
  • Red dry chillies : 1
  • Oil – 1 tsp
  • Salt : to taste


  1. Microwave everything together for 4 – 5 minutes.
  2. Cool and grind in a blender. Serve with dosas.

This is going to be my entry for Wholesome Wholegrain Cooking, held at girlichef this month.

Baked Vegetable Biryani

Well, this place is all about cooking by trial and error, and this one goes right into the error section!

I made this great looking, wonderfully aromatic biryani last week. The final baked biryani looked like the Moon! When I opened it, the aroma was so wonderful. My hopes were sky high, and then I gave it a gentle stir and tasted a spoonful. That’s when the balloon burst. I was expecting a great biryani and this was just an ordinary one. I needn’t have gone through the pain of making a separate masala, layering the rice, sauteing the onions separately and all that. It tasted no different from my all-in-one quick biryani.

I was out of aluminium foil, so I just covered the biryani with chapati dough. I saw this in one of the videos by Vahrehvah chef. The dough turned out to be like crisp pita chips and was yummy when I scooped the rice with it. That was really wonderful.

This one is not a disaster, just a disappointment. After all the effort that went into it, I thought it might turn out to be a bit different from what I usually make.

Still noting the recipe down, in case some one gets a better result than me!


Basmati Rice : 1 cup
Mixed Vegetables : 2 Cups (Potato, Carrots, Beans, Cauliflower, Broccoli, Peas, Tomato)
Paneer : 100gms, cubed
Fried Onions : 1/2 to 3/4 cup
Yogurt : 3 to 4 tbsp
Ginger paste : 1 tsp
Coriander powder : 1 tsp
Chilli powder : 1 tsp
Cumin powder : 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder : 1/4 tsp
Coriander chopped : 1/4 cup
Mint leaves chopped : 2 tbsp
Oil : 4 tbsp
Butter : 1 tbsp
Salt : to taste
Juice  from 1/2 of a lemon


  1. Clean and soak the rice for at least half an hour. Add a spoonful of oil and required salt for the rice. Cook in 2 cups of water till the water is absorbed. Set aside.
  2. In another pan saute the Paneer,if using, till light brown. Remove and add the other vegetables and saute for 2 to 3 minutes. Turn off the heat. Add the chilli, cumin, coriander and turmeric powders, ginger paste, salt, yogurt and lemon juice and mix. Let it marinate for 15 minutes.
  3. In an oven proof dish, layer the rice. Add half of the fried onions. Add all the marinated vegetables on top of the onions. Add all the chopped coriander and mint leaves. Cover this by another layer of rice. Sprinkle the remaining onions. Add a tbsp of butter.
  4. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.

Yum Yum Breakfast

I was looking for a baked biriyani recipe now and have finally zeroed down on the recipe. I was planning to blog about that for the Bookmarked Tuesdays event. But since its still in the oven, I decided to have a look at the entries for this week. One of the blogs had this recipe for a simple Banana Biscuit Milkshake in the archives. One look at it and I knew I had to try it.

And so here I am, having a sip of this tasty and filling yum yum milkshake.

And here is the virtual treat for you all – Simple, yet divine. There are a lot of kid friendly recipes there, I am particularly eyeing at the bright carrot idlis… hmmm…may be for the next tuesday :).


Cool Milk : 1/2 – 1 cup

Banana : 1

Glucose biscuits/cookies : 4-5


  1. Blend everything together till smooth. There shouldn’t be any lumps in the milkshake.
  2. Milk needs to be adjusted according to your preferred consistency.

So, I am entering this recipe for Aipi’s and Priya’s Bookmarked Tuesdays.

Sending this to Healing foods : Banana, Hearth and Soul Hop and Serve it : Chilled as well.

Spinach Rice Casserole

The weekend is here, and there I was – browsing to my heart’s content, late into the night, happy about the fact that Bebo has no school tomorrow.

Little did I know what was in store for me this morning. The entire place shook for a minute! It took me sometime to understand that it was not an earthquake, just Bebo waking me up. God! Don’t kids get the idea of weekends? Of sleeping late? Of taking it easy? Apparently not. So long story short, me and Harry were awake at 6:15 this morning.

Bebo was bright and brisk and immediately got down to his business. Kiddo was playing happily after his morning breakfast. Me and Harry, bleary eyed, were looking at each other and sighing. The joy of parenthood is pretty dull early in the mornings :))! Still, can’t complain. Bebo wakes up on week days for our sake, so its only fair that Harry gives up his sleep for Bebo’s sake on weekends ;-).


Spinach : 500 gms (one big bunch)

Onion : 1 medium, chopped

Rice : 1 cup (cooked rice)

Butter : 1- 2 tbsp

All purpose flour : 1 tbsp

Milk : 1 cup

Egg : 1

Chilli flakes : 1 -2 tsp

Garlic : 2-3 pods, crushed

Bread crumbs : made from 2 slices of bread, about 3/4 cup

Salt, Pepper : to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Grease a rectangular baking dish.
  2. Clean the spinach, cover and cook with a tablespoon of water for a few minutes till the spinach is wilted.
  3. In a pan, combine the butter, flour and milk. Heat, stirring continuously to get a smooth, lump free sauce. Dilute with water or stock, if the sauce is too thick. Season with salt,pepper and chilli flakes.
  4. Add the spinach, rice, chopped onion, garlic and the lightly beaten eggs to the sauce. Mix everything till combined.
  5. Transfer to the baking dish, press lightly. Add the bread crumbs all over on the top.
  6. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes till the top turns brown.


Next time, I will be sauteing the onion and garlic before using them.

You can top it with cheese, instead of bread crumbs. You can add more seasonings according to your taste.

Linked to Its a Keeper Thursdays, Friday PotluckDish it Out – Spinach & Garlic.