Monthly Archives: July 2014

Spaghetti Indiano

Today, if I ask my kids about pasta, I’ll get a list of pasta varieties and sauces.

But back in the ‘70s, Italian hubs weren’t so popular and nobody here had access to a penne, farfalle, fusilli, etc.

But what we could get, was the spaghetti and the macaroni. And we thought that was choice enough!

Even then, I wasn’t limited to the lack of authentic Italian ingredients so readily available today, and happily cooked up this easy and hit recipe using local ingredients that I still make today.

What makes it really different is that I still make it minus oregano, parsley and mozzarella!

The result is this wholesome and homely Indianised spaghetti in rich arabiatta… no, Indianised spaghetti in a rich tomato sauce! With lots and lots of my favourite Amul cheese, of course! Isn’t that a perfect way to make this Italian recipe really desi?

Spaghetti in Tomato Sauce 

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Preparation time: 10 min   Cooking time: 30 min    Serves: 4

Ingredients

250 gms spaghetti (dry)
1/2 kg tomatoes
1 tbsp butter
2 onions (finely chopped)
1 green capsicum (finely chopped)
3 tsp red chilli powder
1 1/2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp tomato ketchup
1 1/2 tsp corn flour
1/2 cup milk
75 gms cheese
salt to taste

Method

  1. Boil the spaghetti in a large pot of water with salt and little oil
  2. Once boiled, wash the spaghetti with cold water, drain out the water and set aside
  3. Boil the tomatoes for 5-7 minutes, remove the water and let them cool
  4. Churn the tomatoes in a mixer and sieve it to make a puree
  5. Heat the butter in a pan and sauté the onions & capsicum for two minutes
  6. Add the puree, chilli powder, sugar, salt & tomato ketchup and boil the sauce
  7. Mix the corn flour with the milk and add to the sauce
  8. Add the spaghetti
  9. Grease a baking dish, lay the spaghetti onto it and top it with grated cheese
  10. Garnish it with capsicum
  11. Bake in a pre-heated oven (180 degrees) for 10 minutes or until the cheese is brown
  12. Serve hot

Kebab Corner

Now here’s a recipe that I have been making since over 20 years! My kids love it, their friends love it and it’s an all-time party favourite. A perfect starter to any meal, this one doesn’t take too long to make and can be easily prepared in advance. By simply adding wholesome chunks of mozzarella, I have turned what would otherwise be a Hara Bhara Kebab into a lip-smacking contemporary appetiser which grills up beautifully. Go on, add a dash of green to your party menu!

Green Mozzarella Kebab

Prep time: 15 min Cooking time: 30 min Serves: 12 pcs

HB2

 

HB !

 

Ingredients

1 tea cup finely chopped spinach
2 medium potatoes (boiled and mashed)
50 gm paneer (cottage cheese)
2 slice of bread (grind in mixer)
1/2 tea cup crushed peas
12 pieces of mozzarella cheese
1/2 onion chopped
1 tsp chilly ginger paste
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp oil
1 tbsp corn flour
1 tbsp plain flour
oil for deep frying
salt to taste
12 pieces of cashew nut

Method 

  1. steam the spinach and churn it in a mixer
  2. heat a pan and sauté the peas in oil for 2 minutes
  3. mix all the ingredients except mozzarella
  4. divide the mixture into 12 equal portion
  5. take 1 portion, rub it in the flour and flatten on the palm
  6. put a piece of mozzarella in the middle and make a ball
  7. repeat with other portions
  8. mix the corn flour and plain flour
  9. rub the ball in the mixed flour and deep fry
  10. garnish with cashew nuts

Note: For a healthy version you can grill or shallow fry the kebabs

Corn Pulav

This non-traditional pulaav is an easy dish to start with. I personally love the colourful paring of white rice and fiery orange curry! The liberal use of coconut not just gives the delicately flavoured rice its unique texture, but also lends a robust full-bodied flavour to the spicy gravy. A perfect Sunday evening accompaniment, it takes all of 45 minutes to whip this up, and even lesser to disappear from plates!

Corn Pulav with Coconut Curry 

Prep Time: 15 min      Cooking time: 30 min         Serves: 4

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Ingredients

For the Curry
1/2 tea cup coconut
2 pieces of kashmiri chilli
4 cloves garlic
1/4 tea cup curd
1 1/2 tbsp gram flour
1/2 tbsp ghee
1/2 tsp cumin seed
salt to taste

For the Pulav
2 tea cup rice (cooked)
3/4 tea cup corn (boiled)
1 onion (finely chopped)
1 1/2 tsp chilli ginger paste
1/3 tea cup coconut
2 tbsp coriander
1/2 tsp garam masala
1 tbsp ghee
1/2 tsb cumin seed
salt to taste

Method

For the Coconut Curry

  1. mix coconut, garlic, and kashmiri chilli in a mixer
  2. add 1 1/2 tea cup of water to the mix and liquidise it
  3. in a pan, heat the ghee and cumin seed till it crackles then add the coconut gravy
  4. mix the gram flour with the curd and add it to the gravy
  5. add some salt and let it boil for sometime
  6. add some water for thinner consistency (optional)

For the Pulav 

  1. heat the ghee and cumin seed till it crackles
  2. add the onions and fry for a few minutes
  3. add the coconut, coriander, salt, garam masala and the chilli ginger paste
  4. add the corn and rice and mix well
  5. Serve hot with coconut curry

Curry Time

The diversity of ingredients makes this North-Indian style sabzi a trusted favourite with most housewives today.  I have added my own twist to an ageless recipe by adding a cashew and almond gravy. Cashews, by themselves, lend a distinct richness and unmistakable nuttiness to this mixed vegetable dish. You can make this with any vegetable combination you like, but I find the one below to be an ideal balance.

Chilli Milli Sabzi

Prep Time: 20 minutes   Cooking Time: 30 minutes      Serves: 6 

Chilli milli sabzi

Ingredients
3 teacup mixed boiled vegetable (potato, carrot, french beans, green peas)
150 gms paneer/cottage cheese (diced)
1 large capsicum
2 green chillies (finely chopped)
2 onions (finely chopped)
6 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
1″ piece of ginger (finely chopped)
3 tbsp ghee (can also use 1 1/2 tbsp ghee and 1 1/2 tbsp oil)
4 tomatoes boiled and blended in a mixer for the gravy

For the Paste
2 tbsp cashewnuts
6 almonds
6 kashmiri chillies
2 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
5 peppercorn
3 cloves
2 cinnamon sticks (approx 2″)
4 pieces of cardamom

Method 

For the Paste 

  1. Mix all the ingredients and add little water and churn into a paste

For the Vegetable

  1. Heat the ghee and add the onions, garlic, green chillies, ginger and capsicum
  2. Fry the onions till they turn light brown and then add the paste and cook for a few minutes
  3. Add the tomato gravy and let it cook for a few minutes
  4. Add the vegetables, paneer/cottage cheese, and a little water and let it boil
  5. Garnish with grated paneer and coriander leaves
  6. Serve hot with paratha or roti

Note: Create a jain version of this dish by avoiding the potatoes, ginger, garlic and onions