Strawberry shrikhand

BM# 100: Week 2, Day 3
Theme : 3 
ingredient Dishes

For Day 3, here is another yogurt based recipe. Strawberry Flavored shrikhand. We had been to a friend’s place for dinner recently. They served us a very generous thali, but it was the shrikhand – puri combination that all of us relished a lot. Surprisingly, my husband who is not a fan of anything sweet, loved it as well.

I decided to make it at home since it’s been ages since I prepared it. I have made plain shrikhand and mango shrikhand before, so this time I decided to make strawberry flavored one. I followed Usha’s recipe here and with just three ingredients to make this fantastic dish, it was perfect for this week’s theme. I love how Usha’s pictures have highlighted the pale pink color of shrikhand, not an easy task to accomplish.

Both my husband and son loved this. I would suggest tasting the shrikhand and making some adjustments while preparing it as the sourness of yogurt and sweetness of strawberries vary vastly. So use this recipe as a guide and tweak it to your taste.

Serves : 3

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups hung yogurt /Greek yogurt
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 cup of strawberry purée

Method:

  1. If using regular yogurt, it needs to be drained well to remove excess water. Layer a clean cotton cloth over a fine mesh strainer. Place the strainer over a large bowl. Pour yogurt into the lined strainer and refrigerate overnight covered with a plate or plastic wrap. An Easier way is to use Greek yogurt.
  2. Purée strawberries to get about a cup of purée. Once the yogurt has drained, add it to a bowl. Add the sugar and the fruit purée in 2-3 batches to the drained yogurt. Mix well using a hand blender or a whisk. Taste test and add more sugar if needed. Refrigerate until the time of serving. Serve garnished with strawberries or chopped nuts.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM#100

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Lahsooni kadhi & Begun Bhaja


I made brownies last week to show off to some friends. It came out rather well (or so they told me).

I made an impressive Mugalai Potato curry and a tasty carrot rice to go with it this weekend when my cousin visited us. Everyone loved it!

And tonight I made rock hard chapatis with a lukewarm curry to go with it.

And thanked god that things are back to normal :))!

But don’t worry, these kadhi and bhaja are not my recipes. You can try them with confidence. These too got me some compliments, though I am yet to learn how to handle that.

For Blogging Marathon 22, I have chosen ‘Dishes from Bengal’ as the theme. Check out the bloggingmarathon page for more themes and more recipes from the participants.

Have a look at this BengaliThali too while you are around!

Recipe Source:Kitchen e Kichu Khonn

Serves:  4

Cooking Time : 15 min

Kadhi Ingredients:

  • Yogurt/Curd                :        1 cup
  • Water                            :        2 cup
  • Besan/Gram Flour     :       1 tbsp, heaped
  • Garlic                             :       5-6 pods
  • Chili Powder               :        1 tsp
  • Turmeric Powder        :       1/4 tsp
  • Salt
  • Oil                                   :       1 tsp
  • Hing/Asafoetida          :       a pinch

Method:

  1. In a big vessel, mix yogurt, besan, chili powder, turmeric powder and water. Whisk thoroughy for a minute ensuring that no dry lumps remain.
  2. Heat a tsp of oil in a deep non stick pan. Add the hing and garlic, saute for half a minute. Add the yogurt mix and salt.
  3. Let it cook in low fire for about 10 -15 minutes. You can turn off the heat when the besan and garlic are cooked completely. The kadhi’s consistency needs to be adjusted according to your preference. You need to add more water if you want it a bit runny, in that case you have to a taste test and add more salt & chili powder. Serve with rice and a vegetable fry like Aloo Bhaja or Brinjal Bhaja. Scroll down for the recipe.

Recipe Source: Bengali Lunch

Serves:  4

Cooking Time : 15-20 min

Begun Bhaja Ingredients:
Brinjal. : 2, baingan ka Bharta kind
Turmeric powder : 1/2 tsp
Chili powder. : 1/2 -1 tsp
Salt
Oil. : to shallow fry

 

Method:
Wash and Slice the brinjal into circles. These shouldn’t be too thin. Add the turmeric powder, salt, chili powder and keep aside for at least 10 minutes.
Heat oil in a wide pan and add as many slices as you can without crowding the pan. cook for a couple of minutes. flip over and cook the other side too. It will be good if you can cover the pan while cooking as oil might spatter a bit.
Serve hot with rice and kadhi.

Note : I didn’t get the big purple baingan ka Bharta brinjal. I just used up the ones that were there in the fridge at that time.

Amrakhand

All nice things have to come to an end and so does another edition of BM. At least for me.

I wont be participating in the coming week and life is going to be very hectic for sometime now. A bed and homemade food has never looked more attractive for me. I have no idea what I am going to pack for the new apartment, but I have already packed the rice and the rice cooker along with my MIL’s trusted pickle.

See ya all in the next edition! Meanwhile, enjoy this cool treat – so perfect to beat the heat outside.

Ingredients:

  • Mango puree                 :               1 cup
  • Thick yogurt                 :               1 cup
  • Sugar                                :                1/3 cup, or more depending on the sweetness of mangoes
  • Cardamom powder    :                to sprinkle on top

Method:

  1. I leave the yogurt in the South Indian coffee filter overnight, to drain off the excess water,you can do this by hanging the yogurt in a muslin cloth for 2-3 hours.
  2. Mix the yogurt with mango puree and add the required amount of sugar. You need to adjust the quantity of sugar depending on the sweetness of mangoes and your personal preference.
  3. Chill for at least two hours before serving.
  4. Serve with puris, chapatis or have them as such. You can make chapati rolls with shrikhand/amrakhand filling.  

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Bengali Thali

I was standing there, watching the waves dance. Hubby and kiddo were playing hide and seek with the waves. Teasing the water to come and touch their feet.

At the horizon, the anchored ships had switched the lights on, they were now twinkling like little stars far far away.

I decided to let the waves kiss my feet. I wanted to feel the salty, chilling water wash away all my worries. I looked down to watch them come and bury my feet in the sand.

Only I couldn’t. My paunch was coming in between.

Not one to take a hint easily, I stretched a bit further to see the waves bury my feet. I could still not see my feet, only my paunch was visible.

OK, I get the message. Time for some serious measures to watch my weight. No more fatty food.

While I ponder over the point, you guys enjoy this great thali, dishes prepared from the state of Bengal. Just like dieting sounds alien to me, Bengali cuisine is also foreign for me. So thanks a ton, Vaishali, for your insight into Bengali food and for helping me design the menu. Without your help, I would have been totally lost!

Like Kerala Sadya, Bengali food too has some rules when it comes to the food. I read about Bengali Cuisine here, written by Sandeepa of Bong Mom’s Cookbook.

Rice is the main cereal there, just like in Kerala and Tamil Nadu. The first course has bitter gourd or neem leaves (something bitter) in it, this is supposed to have cleansing properties.

It is followed by rice and dal, with a fried bhaja or any other seasonal vegetable as a side dish. Fish and meat courses follow, but for vegetarian meals, paneer is a common substitute.

Then comes the chutney round. I tried getting pineapples, but I was out of luck that day. Went in for a raw mango chutney, and boy! it tasted so good.

The last round is yogurt and then some sweet. I made misti doi. I cooked the milk in the pressure cooker and I don’t know what I did wrong, the texture didn’t come out right. The taste was yum, but the texture didn’t come close to even my usual thick yogurt. Just bad luck, I guess.

The menu:

  • Vegetarian Dishes/ Curries
    • Ucche Bhaja : Bittergourd cooked and fried in oil
    • Begun Bhaja : Deep fried eggplant
    • Aloo Poshto : Potato in Poppy seeds (I was not able to grind the seeds properly!)
    • Cholar Dal : Dal made with chana dal, made on festivals and special occasions.
    • Chanar Dalna : Paneer and green peas curry
  • Rice
  • Sides
  • Sweet
    • Rasgolla : Paneer balls, cooked in sugar syrup

Ingredients for Eggplant fry (Begun Bhaja):

For Ucche Bhaja, bitter gourd fry, substitute brinjal with bitter guard and follow the same recipe. 

  • Eggplant , big variety              : 1
  • Turmeric powder                     :  1/2 tsp
  • Salt
  • Oil for deep frying

Method:

  1. Wash and pat the brinjal dry. Cut into 1/2″ thick round slices.
  2. Apply salt and turmeric powder.
  3. Heat oil in a pan. Deep fry brinjal until crisp and brown on both sides.
  4. Drain on a paper towel and serve hot.
  5. I have cut mine too thin. It should be a little more thick.

Except for the rasgolla and the dal, I am making everything for the first time. I hope I have done it right. This is a first time Bengali thali for me and I really loved the food. Who thought eggplants would be so tasty when fried with salt and a pinch of turmeric?!

Aam Pora Sherbet:

Ingredients:

  • Raw Mangoes          :        2
  • Sugar                           :   a varying quantity, depending totally on the sourness of mangoes. Start with 1/3 cup
  • Salt                               :     a pinch
  • Mint leaves               :   a handful, optional
  • Water or Soda for serving : 4-5 cups, again need to taste test and adjust accordingly.

Method:

  1. The first step is to get the mango pulp. Then for serving, the pulp can be diluted with water or with soda.
  2. Wash, clean and pat the mangoes dry. Roast them directly in open flame (like how we do for Baingan bhaja) or I guess you can bake them until they are soft as well.
  3. Turn the mangoes with a pair of tongs cook both sides. Once the skin is black and blistered, keep aside to cool.
  4. Once its cool to handle, peel the charred skin off. Wash thoroughly so that there are no burnt pieces left and squeeze the pulp out. Collect it in a bowl.
  5. Add sugar and a pinch of salt and handful of washed mint leaves (optional) and blend in a mixer/blender.
  6. This is the concentrate. I finished off mine then itself , so never really got around storing it.
  7. Add 3-4 cups of water and blend again. Check the sugar and add more if required. The quantity of water and sugar will depend on the sourness of mangoes. So start with a lesser quantity and work your way upwards.
  8. Pour into tall glasses and serve cool with ice cubes.

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