Recipes: One Pot Coriander Rice

I was feeling very lazy to cook last week and didn’t want to make something complicated. I thought of making some kind of a pulao, then zeroed on to this coriander rice. This is a one pot meal and is super yummy and delicious! It’s also very easy to make, even if you are a novice in the kitchen.

One Pot Coriander Rice

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Basmati Rice, washed well and soaked in water for 20-30 minutes.
  • 2 medium sized onions, sliced finely
  • 1 small green bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 carrot, cut into 2-inch strips
  • 1 medium sized potato, cut into 2-inch strips
  • 1/4 cup green peas
  • 1/2 cup paneer, chopped into 2-inch strips
  • 1/2 cup chopped coriander leaves
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic
  • 1-inch piece of ginger
  • 5-6 green chillies
  • 4 pieces of clove
  • 4 pieces of cardamom
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp ghee or oil

Method:

  • Drain the rice and keep aside.
  • Blend together the coriander leaves, garlic pods, ginger and green chillies to make it into a fine paste and keep aside.
  • In a pan, heat the ghee or oil and when warm, add the cumin seeds. When the seeds splutter, add the cloves, cardamom pods and the bay leaf.
  • Then add the onions and sauté till it becomes translucent. Add the bell pepper and continue to sauté.
  • Add the remaining vegetables (except the paneer) and sauté for around 5 minutes.
  • Now add the blended paste and the paneer and stir well. Add salt to taste and when the mixture starts to bubble, add the drained rice and check for seasoning.
  • If using a rice cooker, pour this with around 1 to 1.5 cups of water and cook till done.
  • If using the stove top continue to cook using water as required. The rice should be separate and well done.

I served this with my Sweet Corn Sundal which I repurposed as a salad for today and a pineapple and onion raita.

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Recipes: Panchratna Dal

We make dal at least thrice a week at home in various forms, both north and south Indian versions. This time I made a dal with five different types of lentils which is extremely tasty and goes very well with both rice and flatbread. Try it as a different take on your usual dal at home.

Panchratna Dal

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup toovar dal
  • 1/4 cup chana dal
  • 1/4 cup whole urad dal
  • 1/4 cup yellow moong dal
  • 1/4 cup masoor dal
  • 2 medium-sized onions, chopped finely
  • 3 medium sized tomatoes, chopped finely
  • 2-inch piece of ginger, grated
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/8 tsp asafoetida
  • 2 green chillies, chopped finely
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp kasuri methi
  • Salt to taste
  • Coriander leaves to garnish

Method:

  • Wash the lentils thoroughly and then soak them in hot water for about an hour.
  • Then pressure cook the lentils with just enough water to cover the lentils with the turmeric powder and pressure cook for four whistles. If you are cooking the lentils in a pan, cook until the lentils are completely cooked and broken down.
  • When the pressure in the cooker reduces, whisk the dals well so that they are completely broken down and form a creamy mass.
  • In the meantime, heat a pan and add the ghee to it. When the ghee warms, add the cumin seeds. When the cumin seeds splutter, add the asafoetida to it.
  • Now add the grated ginger and stir for a couple of minutes. When the ginger starts to brown, add the finely chopped onions and stir well and allow the onions to brown.
  • Then add the finely chopped tomatoes and the coriander powder along with some salt and cook well till the onions are soft and mushy and you can see the oil starting to leave the sides of the pan.
  • Now pour this onion-tomato mixture to the whisked lentils and let it boil on a low to medium flame. Add water to get to your desired consistency. Check for seasoning. Let the dal boil on a low to medium flame for 10-15 minutes, stirring intermittently. 
  • Crush the kasuri methi in your palms and sprinkle it over the dal and let it simmer for a couple of minutes more.
  • Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with rice or rotis.

Note:

  • You can also add garlic to this recipe. I didn’t because I didn’t have it at home. If adding garlic, add it just before adding the ginger. You can either grate the garlic or make a paste of it. Ginger can also be made into a paste or you can also make a paste of ginger or garlic together.
  • You can also add a dash of lemon juice just before serving if you want this dish to be slightly sourish.

Recipe: Tamatar Dahi wale Bhindi or Okra in a Tomato Yoghurt Sauce

I had some Ladies Fingers or Okra going bad and so wanted to make something with them. I wanted to make a gravy dish, but was bored of making a tomato gravy, so tried something different this time. The dish was super yummy and is a definite keeper for sure! I made this for lunch with Sweet Corn and Peas Pulao yesterday.

The recipe is slightly labour intensive, but very tasty and will be a keeper in your repertoire. It also uses more oil than I am wholly comfortable with, but is still ok as an occasional treat.

Tamatar Dahi wale Bhindi or Okra in a Tomato Yoghurt Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 kg ladies fingers or okra
  • 1 pod garlic
  • 1.5 inch piece of ginger
  • 4 medium sized onions
  • 4 medium sized tomatoes
  • 1 cup plain yoghurt
  • 4-5 tbsp oil
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 10 pieces of cashew nuts
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1-2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tbsp kasuri methi
  • Salt to taste
  • Coriander leaves to garnish

Method:

  • Wash and dry the ladies fingers throughly. Top and tail them and cut into 1-1.5 inch pieces. Keep aside.
  • Peel the garlic, peel and chop the ginger, slice the onions and tomatoes separately and keep everything aside.
  • Heat about 2 tsp of oil and when the oil heats up, put in the garlic and ginger in it and let it stir for a few minutes.
  • Then add the cashew nuts and stir for a couple of minutes.
  • When the cashews start to brown add in the sliced onions and sauté till it starts to brown. Then add the tomatoes plus about a teaspoon of salt and cook till the tomatoes are cooked, soft and mushy.
  • Let it cool completely and then blend into a smooth paste, using as much water as needed.
  • In the same pan, heat around 2-3 tbsp of oil and in batches cook the chopped okra. Sprinkle a pinch of salt each time. The okra should be shiny and dark green with a slight crispy taste to it. Remove the okra and keep aside.
  • In the same pan, heat the balance oil and fry the cumin and fennel seeds. When they pop, add the blended paste and cook it till the water evaporates.
  • In the meantime, beat the yoghurt well and when the paste becomes thick and oil starts to float in the edges, pour this yoghurt over the paste and stir well.
  • Now add the fried okra and stir well. Add water if needed to thin the gravy out.
  • Add in the spices now – red chilli powder, cumin powder and coriander powder along with garam masala. You should also check salt and seasoning at this point and add if anything seems less.
  • Let it boil on a low to medium flame till it comes to a rolling boil. Crush the kasuri methi in your palms and sprinkle it over the gravy. Let it cook for around five minutes and then switch off the gas.
  • Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with rice or an Indian flatbread.

Note: If you make this in advance and are heating it up before serving, you may notice that the gravy has thickened because of the cashew nuts. In that case, thin it with some thinned yoghurt or milk.

Recipes: Masala Potatoes

A very basic recipe, which can be modified to make it slightly richer as well as made with other vegetables and probably even meat, this gravy can also be made in advance and be frozen for when you need to make something in a hurry.

Masala Potatoes

Ingredients:

  • 4-5 medium-sized potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 3 medium-sized onions, chopped roughly
  • 3 medium sized tomatoes, chopped roughly
  • 5-6 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Carom seeds
  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 4-5 almonds
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder
  • 1-2 tbsp garam masala powder
  • 1-2 tbsp Kasuri Methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp oil

Method:

  • Keep the chopped potatoes in a pan of water so that it does not oxidise while you make the gravy.
  • In a pan, heat 1 tbsp oil and then add 1 tsp cumin seeds and let it splutter. Then add the fennel and carom seeds and stir for a few seconds each before adding the next spice.
  • When the spices splutter, add the garlic and ginger and saute it for a few seconds.
  • Then add the almonds and stir for a minute or so.
  • Now add the onions and saute till it turns translucent. When the onions turn translucent, add the chopped tomatoes and give it a good stir.
  • Add around a tsp of salt to let the onion and tomato become mushy. At the same time, add the red chilli powder, cumin powder and coriander powder and stir well.
  • Once the tomatoes are completely cooked and mushy, remove from the flame, let it cool down completely and then blend to a fine paste. You can add water as needed to thin it down while blending.
  • Drain the potatoes and keep aside.
  • In the same pan, use the balance oil and when it becomes warm, add the remaining cumin seeds. When the seeds start to splutter, add the turmeric powder and the asafoetida and then quickly add in the drained potatoes. Add a bit of salt, cover and cook on a low to medium flame till the potatoes are almost cooked.
  • At this point, pour in the prepared gravy and stir well, letting it come to a boil. Check the seasoning at this point and add what is missing.
  • Add the garam masala and crush the Kasuri Methi in the palms of your hands before sprinkling it over the gravy.
  • Let the gravy come to a nice rolling boil, reduce the flame and continue to boil for another five minutes.
  • Remove from the flame, garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with any rice or Indian flatbread.

Notes:

  • This is a very basic gravy and if you want to make it richer, you can add cashew nuts along with almonds when cooking. Also adding cooking cream while the gravy is boiling (towards the end) will make it more rich and creamy.
  • I made this with only potatoes, but you can add any combination of vegetables, including paneer (or tofu), cauliflower, peas, carrots etc to make it more wholesome.

Recipes: Tamarind Date Chutney

img_2125I realised when I shared my recipe for chole that I have not yet shared this easy, piquant yet sweet Chutney. This is great when paired with fried food and also makes a great spread for sandwiches. It does take a while to make but is totally worth the effort.

I made this chutney along with my Green Coriander Chutney and Dried Red Chilli & Raisin Chutney when we hosted S’ colleagues for a Diwali open house.

Tamarind Dates Chutney

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup tamarind
  • 1 cup dates
  • 2 tsp rock salt
  • 1 tbsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin powder
  • Salt to taste

Method:

  • Deseed the dates and the tamarind. Make sure there is no fibre also in the tamarind.
  • Soak the dates and tamarind either separately or together in hot water for an hour or so.
  • When the dates and tamarind have cooled off, blend them, along with the water they were strained into a fine paste.
  • Strain this paste through a strainer into a large pot which you can put on the gas. You may need to blend and strain a few times so that you get all the paste in.
  • When everything has been strained, put the pot on the gas and add the salt, rock salt, red chilli powder and cumin powder and let it come to a rolling boil. You can also check spices at this point and add more if needed.
  • Once it comes to a rolling boil, reduce the flame and let it boil for around 5-10 mins. It will start thickening and once it is almost as thick as you require, switch off the flame. It will become thicker as it cools.
  • When cool, remove to a clean container and refrigerate. It should stay well in the fridge for a couple of weeks.

Notes:

  • If you don’t have access to dates, you can substitute them with raisins. Or you can even do a combination of both dates and raisins. Just use the same quantity as above.