Pakashastra

Pakashastra

Monday, December 29, 2014

Rava Chakkuli/Murukku


Ingredients:

Semolina/Rava - 1 1/2 cups
Water - 3 cups
Salt - 1 tablespoon + more per taste
Fried Gram - 1/3 cup
Green Chillis - 8
Red Chilli powder - 2 teaspoons
Cumin Seeds - 1 tablespoon
Asafoetida Powder - 1/8 teaspoon
Butter - 5 tablespoons
Rice Flour - 3 cups
Water - 1/2 cup
Oil for deep frying

For Aid:

Chakkuli/Murukku press
Plastic/Wax Paper sheet - 1

Method:

  1. In a large pan, bring water to a rolling boil.
  2. Add salt and then slowly add semolina to the boiling water, stirring continuously to avoid any lumps. Keep stirring for a 2-3 minutes until it thickens. Turn off the flame.
  3. Blend fried gram into fine powder. Keep aside.
  4. Shred the green chillis. Do not add water.
  5. Now add shredded green chillis, red chilli flakes, fried gram powder, butter, cumin seeds, asafoetida powder and little more salt depending on your taste. I used approx. 1-2 teaspoons more.
  6. Mix well, add rice flour.
  7. Add 1/2 cup of water and knead the dough thoroughly until it is smooth and well combined. Sprinkle a little more water if required, to get a dough that is smooth but not too soft and sticky. The dough should form a lump without leaving any traces of the dough in the bowl.
  8. Now divide the dough into equal sized oval portions to fit into the murukku press.
  9. Heat oil for deep frying. 
  10. Place a plastic/wax paper sheet on a flat surface.
  11. Place an oval shaped dough portion in the murukku press and press it in circular fashion, like a coil, to form the chakkuli/murkku shapes. Ideally, there should one string between the start and the end point.

  12. Depending on the quantity of oil, drop a few pressed dough-coils into the oil. Set the flame to medium-low. Deep fry until the oil stops making the bubbling sound and the chakkuli/murukku turn brown and crisp.
  13. Remove them from oil and place them on a kitchen tissue.
  14. Serve. To store, once cooled to room temperature, place them in an air tight container.

Note:
  1. This makes a large batch of chakkuli/murukku, so you might want to reduce the quantity to half of what is mentioned above.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Peach Melba Trifle


Ingredients:

Heavy Cream - 1/2 cup
Whole Milk Yogurt - 1 cup
White Sugar - 3 tablespoons
Vanilla Essence - 1/2 teaspoon
Cinnamon Powder - a pinch
Fresh Peaches - 6
Vanilla or Chocolate Cake - 10 to 12 slices (I used chocolate cake)
Lemon Juice - 2 teaspoons

For Cranberry Sauce:

Dried Cranberries - 1/4 cup
White Sugar - 2 tablespoons (adjust depending on the sweetness of cranberries)
Salt a pinch
Water - 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons
Corn Flour - 1 teaspoon
Vanilla Essence - 1/2 teaspoon
Lemon Juice - 1 teaspoons

For Serving:

Stemmed glasses or bowl - 6

Method:

Preparing Cranberry Sauce:

  1. Take cranberry, sugar, salt and 1/2 of water in a sauce pan. Cook on medium flame until the cranberries turn soft.
  2. Meanwhile dilute corn flour in 2 tablespoons of water.
  3. Pour the diluted corn flour into the cooking cranberry syrup. Stir continuosly to avoid any lumps. The syrup will start thickening.
  4. Set the flame to low, add vanilla essence, mix well.
  5. Now add lemon juice, mix well. Cook for a minute more. Turn off the heat.
  6. Cool and refrigerate to chill the sauce, for about 3-4 hours. 

Preparing and Assembling Triffle:

  1. Peel peaches. 
  2. Cut 4 peaches into thin slices. Rub the slices with 2 teaspoons of lemon juice. Refrigerate the slices.
  3. Whip the heavy cream until it forms peaks in a bowl.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk yogurt with sugar, vanilla essence and cinnamon powder thoroughly.
  5. Chop the remaining two peaches and puree them. Keep aside.
  6. Now add whipped cream and peach puree. Whisk well. 
  7. Now place the stemmed glasses or bowls on the platform.
  8. Roughly chop the cake slices.
  9. Divide half the portion of the cake slices among the 6 glasses.
  10. Place 4-5 slices of peaches.
  11. Top it with 3-4 tablespoons of yogurt mixture.
  12. Now repeat the cake, peach slice and yogurt mixture layers.
  13. Layer it with a few slices of peaches.
  14. Top with 3 teaspoons of prepared cranberry sauce.
  15. Refrigerate for 4-5 hours.
  16. Serve chilled.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Pudina Paneer Kurma


Ingredients:

Onion - 1 large
Tomato - 1 small
Capsicum - 1 small
Cooking Oil - 1 tablespoon
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 teaspoon
Red Chill Flakes - 1/2 teaspoon
Sugar - 1 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Paneer - 400 gms

For Masala:

Fresh Mint Leaves (Pudina), chopped - 1 cup, tightly packed
Coriander Leaves, chopped - 1/2 cup, tightly packed
Roasted Peanuts - 1/4 cup
Coconut, grated - 1/2 cup
Green Chillis - 5
Garlic Cloves - 4
Cinnamon - 1" long stick
Cloves - 5
Peppercorns - 6
Cardamom seeds - 1/4 teaspoon

For Garnishing:

Chopped Coriander Leaves

Method:
  1. Chop onion and tomato.
  2. Cut capsicum into 1/2" squares.
  3. Cube paneer and boil them in salt water. This makes paneer soft. Drain the water, keep aside.
  4. Heat oil in a pan.
  5. Add chopped onion, saute until translucent.
  6. Now add capsicum pieces and saute for 4-5 minutes until they are a little soft but still a little crunchy.
  7. Add tomatoes, saute until they turn soft.
  8. Add turmeric powder, red chilli flakes, sugar and salt. Mix well and let it cook on low flame for 4-5 minutes.
  9. Meanwhile, grind all the ingredients for masala adding a little water. Grind into a smooth paste.
  10. Add the paste to sauteed vegetables. Mix well. Cook for 10 minutes on low flame.
  11. Add paneer cubes.
  12. Pour a little more water to adjust the consistency of the gravy.
  13. Let it cook on low flame for about 10 minutes.
  14. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.
  15. Serve hot with roti, phulka, paratha of your choice.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Lachcha Paratha


Ingredients:

All Purpose Flour (Maida) - 4 cups + for dusting
Water - 2 cups
Salt to taste
Cooking Oil - 1/4 cup

For Aid:

A Clean Cotton towel

Method:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, take maida, salt and 2 teaspoons of oil. Mix well.
  2. Now pour 2 cups of water and mix well until it forms a lump.
  3. Now pour 2 teaspoons of oil on a clean kitchen platform and using both your palms, knead the dough thoroughly for 5-10 minutes. Make a large dough ball, smear a teaspoon of oil on top. Set it aside, covered with a wet towel, for about 20 minutes.
  4. Divide the dough into small orange sized balls. Keep them covered with the wet towel for about 15 minutes.
  5. Take a ball, dust it lightly with some flour (if you are generous is using the oil, use oil) and roll it as thin as you can. Do not bother about the shape or any small tear. All you need to do is stretch the dough as thin as it can get. Using oil instead of dusting with flour, does make a difference, lets you roll thinner.
  6. Smear a teaspoon of oil on the surface on the rolled dough.
  7. Sprinkle a little flour on top.
  8. Now from one end, carefully lift the rolled dough and start pleating them all the way through the other end. 

  9. Once you are done with pleating, stretch it slightly by pulling with both your hands or swirl it.
  10. Now keeping the oiled and dusted side on top, tightly roll it like a swiss roll and tuck the end at the bottom of the roll.

  11. Keep the roll covered under wet towel.
  12. Repeat steps 5-11 for all the remaining dough balls.
  13. Now take the roll that you made first, dust it slightly with some flour (or use oil instead) and roll it into a thick disc. 
  14. Place it on your left palm and transfer to the right palm, hitting against the palms. This helps the layers to become distinct, the discs become thinner too.
  15. Now, gently roll it using a rolling pin to make it even throughout. Due to elasticity, it will become a little thicker once you stop rolling. So, roll it to the thickness you prefer, but not too thin.
  16. Immediately, place it on a hot griddle, set the flame to medium. When small bubbles appear on top and brown specks have formed at the bottom, flip the side.
  17. Smear a little oil on top, roast until brown specks form at the bottom. Flip again, smear little oil.
  18. Now place it in a plate, while still hot, place your palms on two sides of the paratha, bring your palms closer to each others, squeezing the paratha from outside to inside, . This separates the layers of the paratha making it flaky.
  19. Serve hot with kurma or any other side dish of your choice.
Note:
  1. You can use 2 cups of whole wheat flour and 2 cups of maida, instead of 4 cups of maida.
  2. This makes about 12-14 parathas. If you do not need so many parathas, in step 16, heat both sides of the paratha only until white spots are formed, without adding any oil, allow it to cool down and then freeze them to use as required. 
  3. Make large batch of these ahead of party to save your time. 
  4. Using oil instead of dusting with flour while rolling does make difference. It lets you roll it thinner and also the pleats get greased on both sides, making the layers much more distinct.               

Monday, December 8, 2014

Bread Roll With Chickpeas Stuffing


Ingredients:

Whole Grain Bread slices - 8
Soft Butter - 2 tablespoons

For Stuffing:

Cooking Oil - 2 teaspoons
Cumin Seeds - 1 teaspoon
Onion - 1 large
Ginger Garlic paste - 2 teaspoons
Boiled Chickpeas - 2 cups
Boiled Potato - 1 large
Carrot, grated - 1/2 cup
French Beans, finely chopped - 1/4 cup
Cabbage, finely chopped - 1/4 cup
Garam Masala Powder - 1 teaspoon
Red Chilli Powder - 1 teaspoon
Dry Mango/Amchoor Powder - 1 teaspoon
Coriander Leaves, chopped - 2 tablespoons
Mint Leaves, chopped - 2 tablespoons
Salt to taste

Method:

Preparing Stuffing:
  1. Chop onion.
  2. Peel and mash potato.
  3. Slightly mash chick
  4. Heat oil in a pan.
  5. Add cumin seeds.
  6. When cumin seeds start sizzling, add chopped onions. Saute until they translucent.
  7. Add ginger garlic paste. Saute until the raw smell disappears.
  8. Now add grated carrot, chopped beans and cabbage. Saute until they are cooked.
  9. Add garam masala, dry mango powder, salt, red chilli powder. Mix well. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
  10. Mix chickpeas. mashed potato. coriander leaves and mint leaves . Mix until well combined. Cook for 4-5 minutes, mixing continuously. Turn off the heat. Keep aside.
Preparing Rolls:
  1. Place a bread slice on a rolling board/platform. Using a rolling pin, like you roll a chapati, roll the bread slice into thin slice. Roll it as thin as possible. Similarly, roll all the other bread slices. Keep aside.
  2. Take a rolled out slice on the rolling board, place 2 tablespoons of the stuffing mixture on one end of the slice.
  3. Roll the slice tightly and press it little bit to flatten it lightly.
  4. Repeat steps 2 &3 for all the remaining slices.
  5. Heat a griddle.
  6. Smear little butter on the sides of the rolls, and roast it slightly on the griddle.
  7. Serve hot with tomato sauce and green chutney.
Note: 
  1. Using bread slices that are NOT refrigerated are preferred as the slices will be softer.
  2. You can replace chickpeas stuffing with any other stuffing of your choice.
  3. You can use the regular sandwich bread or any other bread of your choice instead of whole grain bread.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Multi Dal Spicy Idli


Ingredients:

Par-boiled Rice - 3 cups
Split Black Gram/Urad Dal, de-husked - 1/2 cup
Split Green Gram/Moong Dal, de-husked - 1/2 cup
Toor Dal - 1/2 cup
Fenugreek Seeds - 2 tablespoons
Dry Red Chillis - 8
Coriander Seeds - 2 tablespoons
Salt to taste

For Aid:

Idli moulds
Steaming Pot
A container large enough for the batter to double on fermenting
Oil - 2 teaspoons

Method:

  1. Wash and soak par-boiled in water for 5-6 hours. 
  2. Wash and soak black gram, green gram, toor dal and fenugreek seeds  in water for 3-4 hours.
  3. Blend/grind black gram, green gram, toor dal and fenugreek seeds along with coriander seeds and dry red chillis into smooth batter adding a cup of water. Transfer the batter into a large container. 
  4. Now blend rice into a coarse paste. Transfer into the container. 
  5. Add salt and mix thoroughly. 
  6. Set the batter aside to ferment overnight or for 7-8 hours until the volume of the batter doubles.
  7. Before preparing idlis, take sufficient water in the steam pot and heat it.
  8. Meanwhile, grease the idli moulds with little oil.
  9. Gently mix the batter. Do not over-mix as the air captured during fermentation will escape making idlis harder.
  10. Pour the batter into greased idli  moulds.
  11. Place the moulds in the steam pot and cook for 30mins on high flame.
  12. Turn off the flame, remove the lid of the pot immediately to avoid vapors from dropping on cooked idlis.
  13. Unmould and serve hot with chutney and/or sambhar of your choice. Allowing the idlis to cool down for 2 minutes before unmoulding helps you unmould them neatly.