Aloo paratha

 

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 BM# 102 : Week 3, Day 1
Theme : Restaurant recreations

When we were growing up, the culture of eating outside wasn’t there. In fact, eating outside was considered as a last option when there is absolutely no other way out. There were two main reasons for this -1) there weren’t main clean and neat hotels then. 2) affordability. It was only after we got jobs and moved out of our home, that we started eating out.

My brother moved out when he got a job in Bangalore. The couple of times that I visited him, he had taken me to home style Punjabi dhabas near his place. The fare would be simple – couple varieties of parathas and maybe some curries. We have never looked at the Curries there. We would order aloo parathas most of the time and relish it with thick delicious yogurt and the pickle.

My husband wants a curry for parathas, where as I feel that the curry takes the limelight off the paratha. Aloo parathas are easy to make and there is no one single recipe to make this. Every household has its own variations but the end product is always delicious. If you are making parathas for the first time, it’s a good idea to watch some videos first. And also remember that rolling out rotis gets better with practice. So don’t be disheartened if the first few parathas tend to be a little difficult to make.

Read on for the recipe while.

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Ingredients:

For the dough

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon oil, optional
  • Salt as needed
  • Water for kneading the dough

For the filling:

  • 4 medium potatoes, boiled and peeled
  • 2 teaspoons of oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped finely
  • 1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon aamchur
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • Salt as needed

Method:

  • In a big bowl, add the flour. Add oil and slowly kneed together, adding water in steps to make a dough. Stop adding water when the dough comes together and kneed until it’s smooth.Set aside and let it rest for 30 minutes.
  • Peel and mash the boiled potatoes. There shouldn’t be any big lumps. Keep aside.
  • You can add all the masalas and the chopped onions to the potato mix directly, but I like to sauté the onions before that. It’s an optional step. Sauté the onions and ginger garlic paste in oil and once the onions turn pink, add the masalas. Turn off the heat and mix it in.
  • Add the mashed potatoes and mix everything well.
  • Take a lemon sized ball of the dough and roll it using a rolling pin into a 4″ size roti. You might have to use some flour to the rolling surface so that the dough doesn’t stick to it. Now Take a lemon sized ball of the filling and keep it in the middle.
  • Bring the edges together so that the filling gets enclosed inside the dough.
  • Seal the edges by pinching together so that the filling doesn’t come outside.

    Roll this again using some flour to a big paratha.

    Cook the paratha in heated pan and brush it with some ghee. While the paratha is cooking on the stove, you can start rolling and filling the next paratha.

    Once the bottom is cooked, flip it and cook the other side too. Brush with more ghee if you prefer. Take off the heat once it’s cooked and set aside. Repeat with the rest of the dough.

  • Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the recipe from other Blogging Marathoners.

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    Brinjal Theeyal

    BM# 101: Week 4, Day 2
    Theme : 
    1 ingredient, 3 side dishes

    At my parents house, every single day, the lunch consists of a coconut based sambar and a vegetable side dish. A bean based (Chana, rajma, moong beans, even peanut) chundal is also made on most days. There are two reasons for the coconut sambars. One – my father doesn’t like dal based sambars, he claims it gives him gas. Two- we have a lot of coconut trees in our backyard and so coconuts are available to us throughout the year free of cost.

    I have already shared my mother’s most used recipe here, it just involves grinding shredded coconut with sambar powder. Today’s post is a little more elaborate than that. This was not a frequent recipe at home, but my brother used to prepare it every now and then with great results. He prefers pearl onions or bitter gourd for theeyal. You can use any vegetable of your choice, I have used brinjal here today.

    Read on for the recipe.

    Ingredients:

    For roasting and grinding

    • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
    • 3/4 cup shredded coconut
    • 3-4 dried red chilies (or more per taste)
    • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds

    For the gravy

    • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
    • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
    • 1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
    • A pinch of hing
    • A sprig of curry leaves
    • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced (optional)
    • 2 eggplants, sliced into thin long pieces
    • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
    • 1 teaspoon tamarind paste
    • 2 cups water
    • Salt as needed

    Method:

    1. Heat oil in a pan and add the coriander seeds and dried red chilies, sauté for a couple of minutes until the coriander seeds change color. Take off the heat and transfer to a blender jar.
    2. Now add shredded coconut to the same pan and sauté until it turns golden brown, this might take about 6-8 minutes or so. Keep stirring all the time and keep the heat medium-low to avoid burning. Transfer it to the blender jar and once it’s cooled, grind into a paste adding a little water as needed. Set aside.
    3. Heat 2 tablespoons coconut oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds and curry leaves. Once the seeds crackle, add the fenugreek seeds and hing.
    4. Add the sliced onions and brinjal pieces. Cook, stirring in between, until it’s almost cooked.
    5. Add the prepared coconut paste. Add one cup of water to the blender jar to dislodge the any remaining paste stuck to the jar and add this water also to the pot. Add another cup of water along with the tamarind paste. You can add more water if you want it a little thinner consistency.
    6. Bring it to a boil and cook covered in low heat for about 10-15 minutes until it turns thick and oil floats on top. Turn off heat and serve with rice and a side dish of your choice.

    Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the recipe from other Blogging Marathoners.

    Chana masala

    BM# 101: Week 3, Day 3
    Theme : 
    Creamy gravies

    Last month, my old neighbors had come over home. With the kids at school, there was enough time to relax and catch up with each other. We had a mini pot luck and had a great lunch. I had made three gravies that day, two of which I am posting for this theme. I hadn’t picked this theme when I was preparing the meal, it was just good luck that I took pictures of the thali. My friends had brought in vegetable biriyani and bisibela bath. It was served along with the Chana masala, Chettinad mushroom curry and a mixed vegetable curry. Do check out the carrot halwa recipe too, it is a simple and easy way to make this great dessert.

    Coming to the Chana masala recipe, this is again from Vegan Richa’s Indian Kitchen. After trying the mushroom curry recipe from the book, I made this first when we had some friends coming over. I didn’t have enough time to soak Chana, so I cooked it for one hour in Instant Pot before making this gravy. If you have time, you can soak the Chana overnight and cook it before making this curry. I already have a recipe for Chana masala in the blog, but this recipe has enough differences to make a separate post.

    Read on for the recipe.

    Recipe source: Vegan Richa’s Indian kitchen

    Ingredients:

    • 2 cups dried chickpeas, soaked overnight
    • 6 medium tomatoes, chopped roughly
    • 2″ long piece of ginger
    • 6-8 garlic cloves
    • 2 green chilies
    • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
    • 2 teaspoon oil or ghee
    • 1 medium onion, chopped finely
    • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
    • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
    • A good pinch of hing
    • 2 teaspoons Chana masala or Garam masala
    • Salt as needed
    • About 2 cups of water*
    • Coriander leaves and lemon juice for garnishing and serving

    *You can use the water Chana was cooked in.

    Method:

    1. Drain and Pressure cook the soaked Chana with enough water until it’s done. Let the pressure release naturally. Set aside.
    2. In a blender, combine tomatoes, ginger, garlic, chilies and 1/2 cup cooked (and cooled) chickpeas. Set aside.
    3. Heat oil or ghee in a pan. Add the chopped onions and cook till it turns pink. Add all the masala powders – cumin, turmeric, chili, garam (or Chana) masala, hing and salt. Mix well.
    4. Add the puréed tomato paste. Cover and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring in between to prevent tomatoes from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Add a little water in case that happens. Reduce the heat and cook for another 10 minutes until the mixture is dry and starts to leave the side of the pan.
    5. Add cooked chickpeas and about 2 to 2.5 cups of water. You can use the water in which Chana was cooked. Cover and cook for about 15 minutes, taste testing in between to adjust the seasoning. Take off the heat and serve garnished with coriander leaves, minced onion and lemon juice. This pairs very well with rotis and plain basmati rice.

    Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the recipe from other Blogging Marathoners.

    Methi Kadhi

    BM# 101: Week 2, Day 1
    Theme : Cooking with Chickpea flour

    Back home, it’s a common practice to boil milk every morning before consuming and at the end of the day, the leftover milk is converted to yogurt. So with freshly prepared yogurt almost every single day, there is frequent appearance of yogurt based recipes at our dining table. In our house, Mor kuzhambu was our comfort food. That’s yogurt with ground coconut paste. Amma used to make it in an earthen pot and that used to make it even more delicious.

    In Northern parts of India, instead of coconut, besan or chickpea flour is used to make Kadhi. This yogurt based curry can be thin or thick, depending on the area it’s from. Gujarati Kadhi is more watery than the Punjabi Kadhi. Just like its Southern counterpart, this gravy can be prepared with or without vegetables. Seasonal greens are sometimes added and what we have here is Methi (fenugreek leaves) Kadhi. Here I have served it with mixed vegetable khichdi.

    Read on for the recipe.

    Serves : 6-8

    Ingredients:

    • 1/2 cup chickpea flour/besan
    • 2 cups yogurt
    • 1″ ginger piece
    • 3 green chilies
    • 2 cups Methi leaves, washed and cleaned
    • 5-6 cups water
    • 1 teaspoon chili powder
    • Salt as needed

    For tadka:

    • 1 tablespoon ghee
    • a pinch of Asafetida
    • 1 teaspoon jeera
    • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
    • 2 dried red chilies

    Method:

    1. Using a mortar and pestle, crush the ginger and green chilies together. Else chop it finely.
    2. In a medium bowl, add the besan and yogurt. Using a whisk, mix well until it’s lump free.
    3. Heat ghee in a big heavy bottom pan. Add all the items under tadka.
    4. Once the mustard seeds splutter, add the crushed ginger and green chilies. Sauté until its fragrant. Add the methi leaves. Sauté for a couple of minutes until it’s wilted a bit.
    5. Add the besan yogurt slurry. Mix well and add 5 cups of water. Add chili powder and keep mixing often to avoid any flour lump from forming. Add salt as needed ( Kadhi needs a fair amount of salt).
    6. Reduce heat to low and let it cook for about half an hour. The more it cooks, the tastier it gets. You might have to add more water (and salt too) if it gets too thick. Keep stirring in between.
    7. At the end of half an hour, taste test and take of the heat. Serve with plain rice or chapati.

    Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the recipe from other Blogging Marathoners.