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Recipe of the Month: Mint-Coriander Chutney (Dhaniya-Pudinay Ki Chutney)

Indian people love their tea-time snacks and appetizers and in my house we’re as Indian as it gets; especially when it comes to food. Of course, yours truly enjoys experimenting with different recipes and so, I’ve been making tons of Indian snacks during the holidays.

But a staple item in most households is our dhaniya-pudinay ki chutney (mint-coriander chutney). This savoury chutney goes with everything! You can make it to dip snacks and appetizers in, or out it in your raita (yogurt side dish) or eat it with roti or parathas and even enjoy it on top biryani. It’s like ketchup in the modern world.

And of course, I have my mother’s recipe here to share with all of you.

Here’s how you make a delicious and savoury coriander and mint chutney to go with all your appetizers and snacks.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups roughly chopped coriander
  • 2 cups roughly chopped mint
  • 2-3 green chillies
  • 4-5 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 3-4 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp black salt (kala namak) or regular salt
  • Blender or mortar and pestle

Here’s what you do:

  1. Wash and roughly chop green chillies, coriander and mint leaves
  2. If you have a mortar and pestle, you can mash all the ingredients in that. But I’m not so traditional, so I used a blender
  3. Blend all ingredients for 1-2 minutes or until a thick paste is made
  4. At this time, you can adjust the liquidity consistency to your preference. We like a thick chutney so I only add a couple of tablespoons of water but you can add more if you want your chutney liquidity
  5. Pour into a glass jar and refrigerate
  6. Serve cold with your favourite snacks and appetizers
  7. Enjoy!

Upcoming Change: From Recipe of the Week To Recipe of the Month

Slide1I love trying out new recipes. I love sharing the ones I know with all of you. But I find that lately, I’m not doing as many new recipes as I’d like to and mostly cook the same meals week after week. For a long time, I was doing great with keeping up with my recipe of the week. If I was energetic enough, you’d even get two recipes in one week. But lately, I’ve just been so drained to try new things; the new job, drama with friends, personal health issues, etc. have all contributed to this.

I’ve decided I’d rather give you one or two quality recipes each month, than four or five quick/easy ones. So, the way I’m going to work this out is by providing one non-Indian recipe and one Indian recipe each month. This way, you can keep up with my traditional meals and enjoy the experimental recipes too.

October’s first recipe is coming in a couple of days. So stay tuned! And if you ever have a dish you want me to provide the recipe for, don’t hesitate to ask.

Recipe of the Week: Baked Chicken Fajitas

Baked Chicken Fajita
Baked Chicken Fajita

As mentioned over the weekend, I wanted to try something new for dinner. A few friends on Facebook had shared a recipe for baked chicken fajitas and the picture just looked amazingly delicious, so I decided to test that recipe out for myself. First and foremost, it was one of the best dinner’s I’ve made before and Dev completely loved it too. It was hearty, filling and so easy and quick to make. It only took 10-15 minutes preparation and 25-30 minutes cook time. I think this might become one of our monthly favorites for lazy Sunday dinners. Try it out and let me know what you think!

This recipe will feed three people fully. You can adjust quantity of ingredients to serve more. For Dev and I, it was perfect because we had 3-4 fajita each (the mini ones) and I brought the leftovers for lunch today.

Here’s what you need:

  • 2-3 chicken breasts
  • 1 red and yellow pepper
  • 1 large onion
  • Fajita seasoning (or you can make your own – see my recipe at the bottom)
  • 8-10 mini tortillas
  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil or cooking spray
  • Large-shallow baking dish
  • 1 cup shredded marble cheese
  • ½ cup salsa

Here’s what you do:

  • Pre-heat oven to 400°C
  • Wash chicken with lemon juice, pat dry and then slice into long strips
  • Wash peppers and onions and slice into long strips
  • Grease baking dish with oil or cooking spray and sprinkle seasoning sparingly
  • Line pan with chicken strips, add salsa, vegetables and sprinkle with seasoning
  • Bake uncovered for 15-20 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink and fully cooked through
  • Sprinkle cheese and bake for another 10-20 minutes or until cheese is fully melted and crusty
  • Remove from heat and let stand for 2-3 minutes
  • Serve hot with toasted tortillas, sour cream, salsa and cheese

To make your own seasoning:

  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • ½ tsp. cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder

Recipe of the Week: Mac and Cheese Bake

My little Ni loves pasta. I could feed it to her 3 times a day, 7 days a week and she would ever-so happily eat it and probably even want seconds. I make her mac and cheese right out of the box at least once a week. But have decided to try making a fresh casserole for lunch today. Of course, I’ve been looking for recipes on Pinterest and haven’t been able to find one that I truly like. So, I’m experimenting and hopefully it’ll turn out the way I want it to and will be toddler approved! Here’s what I’m doing:

Here’s what you need:

  • 3 cups elbow macaroni
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  •  1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 1/4 cup butter

Here’s what you do:

Boil macaroni in water until cooked. Set oven to 375°. Grease baking dish with butter or PAM, add the cooked pasta to the bottom of the dish. Add salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder.  Add 1 cup of cheese and layer more pasta on top. Layer again with remaining cheese and add slices of butter on top. Pour the milk over the top of the butter and cheese. Bake for 30-45 minutes uncovered. Remove from oven once cooked, let cool and then enjoy!

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Recipe of the Week: Bandh-Gobi Mattar (Cabbage & Peas)

Another recipe for my neighbor; who’s turning into an Indian chef! This ones a pretty easy recipe and is delicious served with hot roti and yogurt.

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 cabbage (shredded)
  • 1 tsp jeera (cumin)
  • 1 tsp haldi (turmeric powder)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2-3 tsp curry powder
  • 1 cup green peas
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp dhaniya powder (coriander powder)
  • 1-2 tbsp oil

Here’s what you do:

Heat oil in large wok over medium heat. Add cabbage until wilted.  Add salt, curry powder, garam masala, dhaniya powder, haldi and mix well so that all the cabbage leaves are nicely coated with the spices. Let cook for 2-3 minutes, then add green peas. Mix all ingredients well, reduce heat to the lowest and cover. Let steam for 15-20 minutes or until cabbage is completely cooked. Enjoy with roti and yogurt!

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Recipe of the Week: Aloo ki Sabji aka Dry Potato Curry

My simple and lazy Aloo ki Sabji aka Dry Potato Curry has become a big demand in my family and friend’s circle. Everyone either wants the recipe or wants me to make it for them. My neighbor, too loves my potato sabji and has asked me to post the recipe on my blog for her. So, this is for my dear, V and you sister-in-law.

Here’s what you need:

  • 4-5 medium/large potatoes – washed, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 tsp jeera (cumin)
  • 1 tsp saunf (fennel)
  • 1 tsp methre (fenugreek seeds)
  • 1/2 tsp ajwain (carom seeds)
  • 1 tsp haldi (turmeric powder)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2-3 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp dhaniya powder (coriander powder)
  • 1-2 tbsp oil
  • 1-2 tsp dried fenugreek leafs

Here’s what you do:

Heat oil in large wok over medium heat. Add methre and let sizzle until dark brown, add ajwain, saunf and jeera until nicely browned. Add potatoes and let cook for 2-3 minutes. Add salt, curry powder, garam masala, dhaniya powder, haldi and mix well so that all the potatoes are nicely coated with the spices. Let cook for 2-3 minutes, then rub dried fenugreek leafs between hands, so to completely crush them and add to potatoes. Mix all ingredients well, reduce heat to the lowest and cover. Let steam for 10-12 minutes or until potatoes are completely cooked. Enjoy with roti and yogurt!

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Recipe of the Week: Rajma Chawal (Kidney Bean Curry & Rice)

Ask any Indian their favorite home-cooked food and they’ll tell you it’s Rajma Chawal aka kidney bean curry with rice. It’s one of the traditional Indian recipes that is cooked nearly across India, in various styles. But the main concept is kidney beans curried over steamed rice. My D loves it when I make rajma chawal and I always get lots of praises from him. Even my little Ni will eat it up without any fuss. As for me, I die for my mom’s home-cooked rajma chawal. Whenever she makes it, the house smells of the delicious Tilda Basmati and mixture of spices within the curry. Serve it with sliced onions and bang you’ve found my weakness.

Last night, I made rajma chawal for D. It’s been a while since I’ve made it, as we’ve tried more greens cooked Indian style lately. So, I thought why not surprise him with his favorite meal. I wanted to share the recipe with all of you too. I know if you try it out, you’ll thank me. It’s one of the most heartiest meals out there and will hit just the perfect spot; especially in this “polar vortex” we’re battling in North America these days.

Here’s the recipe!

Ingredients:
1 large onion, diced
2-3 cloves of garlic, diced
Large chunk of ginger, diced (the more the better)
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp red chili powder
1 tsp garam masala
2 large tsp curry powder
1-1 1/2 tsp salt
2 cans of kidney beans (don’t strain them)
Handful of coriander leafs for garnish
3-4 tsp vegetable or olive oil
1 cup water

Here’s what you do:

  1. Over medium heat, in a large pot, add oil and add cumin seeds. Let cumin seeds pop and brown (1-2 minutes).
  2. Add in onions, ginger, garlic and salt. The salt will help brown the ingredients faster.
  3. Add tomatoes, mix and let cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add dry spices; chili powder, turmeric powder, garam masala, curry powder and mix well. Turn heat down to 2-3 (mid-way between low and medium) and cook until the spices have blended into the onions, ginger and garlic and the oil raises to the top (4-5 minutes).
  5. Turn heat up to high and add kidney beans and water. Mix well and let everything come to a boil.
  6. Once boiling begins, reduce heat, add coriander leafs and let simmer for 3-4 minutes.

Serve with sliced onions lightly seasoned with fresh lemon juice and salt/pepper and pour over steamed rice or serve with roti and enjoy!

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