Sunday, January 25, 2015

Gota Seddho Ghugni

Wishing everyone a very happy Saraswati Puja and Vasant Panchmi.
Cooking "Gota Seddho" is a ritual for "Shitol Shosthi" which is the day after Saraswati Pujo. "Gota" means whole and "Seddho" means boiled. Traditionally five different whole lentils are boiled with some whole vegetables like baby potato, baby eggplants, peas in pods, sweet potato, old spinach (sish palong), kul (Jujube??), sojne phul (drumstick flower) etc. without any spices and then mixed in salt and some people add raw mustard oil and green chillies for taste. This is normally cooked on the day of "Puja" in almost all the Hindu "Ghoti" (originally from West Bengal) households..which is consumed on the next day! This day is called "Shitol Shosthi". Mothers celebrate this for long and healthy life for their children. And eating pre-cooked "Cold" meals (normally cooked a day in prior) is a part of rituals. My "jethima" (aunt) and my mother-in-law cooks this "Gota Seddho" every year.
But this particular recipe I am sharing here is NOT the traditional Gota Seddho. It's my mother's recipe. I never ate this anywhere apart from my home. I can definitely call it a family recipe. It tastes heavenly!
My mother's recipe:
Yield 6-7 person
Ingredients for Gota Seddho Ghugni:
  1. Black eyed peas 3/4 cup
  2. Whole yellow peas 1/2 cup
  3. Brown chickpeas 1/4 cup
  4. Whole green grams/ moong 1/4 cup
  5. Whole black Urad 1/4 cup (or less...rather add little more other lentils)
  6. Whole baby eggplants 1 for each person (any eggplant will do if you don't get small ones.)
  7. Whole baby potatoes 1 for each person
  8. Whole baby flatbeans /shim 1 or 2 for each person
  9. Whole peas in pods 1 or 2 for each person
  10. Tomato 2 medium (chopped)
  11. Green chilli 2-3
  12. Ginger and chilli paste 2 table spoons heaped
  13. Dry red chilli 2
  14. Bay leaf 2
  15. Cumin seed 1 teaspoon
  16. Salt, turmeric powder and sugar as required 
  17. Mustard oil or any vegetable oil for cooking about 5-6 tablespoons
How to prepare Gota Seddho Ghugni:
  • Soak all the lentils together for 6-8 hours. Wash few times under running water.
  • Cut potatoes into halves if small potatoes are not available (no need to peel). Cut sweet potatoes into large chunks. Cut eggplants into large chunks if small eggplants are not available Wash all the vegetables very well.
  • Now pressure cook lentils, potatoes along with salt, turmeric powder and sufficient water until 2 whistles over medium heat. Wait until the steam releases completely.
  • Heat in a large vessel. Add cumin seed, dry chilli (do not forget to break them into pieces) and bay leaf. Wait for few seconds. Mix in tomatoes and ginger paste. Cook until raw smell goes off.
  • Add rest of vegetables and mix well with spices. Add salt (as required) and little turmeric powder. Cook for a minute or so. Lastly add boiled lentils and potatoes and some water. Add green chillies. Let it start shimmering. Add sugar.Shimmer covered over low flame for about 7-8 minutes. Stir occasionally to avoid sticking at the bottom of pan. 
  • Check seasoning and turn off the heat. And it's now ready to serve.For regular updates, just click the "like" button of my Facebook page. You can follow me also in NetworkedBlogs . Thank you and wish to see you again. Happy cooking till then :)

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Dark Rich Chocolate Cake

It's December again! The cake-season! And I am back! :D
Starting the season with simple yet yummilicious Dark rich Chocolate cake! 
There are hardly anyone in the world who doesn't love chocolate...and obviously I am no exception! 
The darker is it's better for me ;) 
As they say..."there are some things, better rich! 
                             Coffee, chocolate, men!"  ;)
And this dark, moist double chocolate cake is definitely super-rich! :D 
You will have to try to believe! Here is the recipe.

Ingredients for "Dark Rich Chocolate Cake":
  1. All purpose flour 1 and 1/3 cup
  2. Unsweetened cocoa powder 1/3 cup 
  3. Dark chocolate 80 gm (any good quality dark chocolate ...I used Hershey's)
  4. Sugar 1 cup & 1/4 cup 
  5. Baking powder 1 tea spoon
  6. Baking soda 1/2 tea spoon an 2 pinches
  7. Instant coffee 1 tablespoon
  8. Butter 1/2 cup (room temperature)
  9. Egg 2 large (room temperature)
  10. Buttermilk 3/4 cup
  11. Vanilla extract 1 table spoon
  12. Hot water 1/4 cup

How to prepare "Dark Rich Chocolate Cake":
  • Line a baking tin with baking paper. Preheat the oven at 180'C.
  • Now make the coffee using 1 tablespoon coffee powder and 1/4 cup hot water. Let it cool to room temperature.
  • Sieve and sift flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda in a bowl.
  • Take another large microwave safe bowl and add dark chocolate (break into pieces) to it. Micro it for 8 to 10 seconds.
  • Mix butter with chocolate. Now add sugar to it and whisk until light and flufy using an electric beater.
  • Then goes egg. One at a time. Mix very well. Scrape the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • Now add coffee, vanilla and buttermilk. Mix again.
  • Finally add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Fold and whisk to a smooth batter.
  • Now pour the batter to baking tin. 
  • Bake it  on middle rack for about 30 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. (It might take little more or less time depending on oven).
  • Let it cool down before you cut it into pieces.
  • And the Dark Rich Chocolate Cake is ready! Happy baking!

For regular updates, just click the "like" button of my Facebook page. You can follow me also in NetworkedBlogs . Thank you and wish to see you again. Happy cooking till then :)

Monday, October 13, 2014

Chal-kumror Shukto

Hi friends! It feels so good to be back after a long time!
Before I come to the recipe and other things...let me wish you all "Shubho Bijoya"! Hope you all are doing fine and enjoyed Durga Puja and Navratri!
Today I am sharing a "Shukto" recipe. Shukto is an authentic Bengali dish which is an inseparable part of a complete Bengali set-meal. It must have a dash of bitterness (I mean bitter tasted vegetables like bitter gourd or any other). This dish has many variations, and I have already shared two of them in my blog earlier. Here is another version. This is "Chal-kumror Shukto". I got the recipe from my MIL just few days ago. She got it from a tv show..and then modified it.It's a great recipe and simple one. 

Recipe source: My mother-in-law
Yield: 5-6 servings 
Ingredients for "Chal-kumror Shukto":

  1. Ash gourd/ Chal kumro  1 cup ( 1 very small and tender ash gourd..peeled and cut into little thick 2 inch pieces)
  2. Bitter gourd/ karola 1 large (cut into 2 inch pieces)
  3. Drumsticks 2 (peeled and cut into 2 inch pieces)
  4. Eggplant 1 medium (cut into thick 2 inch pieces )
  5. Radish /mulo 1 (cut into 2 inch pieces)
  6. Potato 1 medium (cut into thick wedges)
  7. Bori /lentil nuggets 8-10
  8. Turmeric powder few pinches (optional)
  9. Ginger-chili paste 1 tea spoon (heaped)
  10. Mustard paste 1 and half table spoon
  11. Fennel seed paste 1 tea spoon 
  12. Panchforon 2 pinches 
  13. Bay leaf 2
  14. Dry red chili 1
  15. Milk 1/2 cup
  16. Mustard oil as required 
  17. Ghee 1 tea spoon 
  18. Salt and sugar according to your taste
  19. Dry roasted Panchforon powder 1 teaspoon 
How to prepare "Chal-kumror Shukto":

  • Fry bori, eggplant and bitter gourd separately with little salt. Keep aside.
  • Pressure cook drumsticks, potato, ash gourd and radish with little salt till 1 whistle. Make the steam out. As we don't want over boiled vegetables.
  • Heat up a wok with 2 tablespoons mustard oil. Add panchforon, bay leaves and dry red chili. Give it quick stirs. Add in ginger-chili paste and give few more stirs...keep the flame high.
  • Stir in boiled vegetables ( don't add the water). Mix well. Keep the heat low.
  • Mix mustard paste, fennel paste with the water from boiled vegetables (about 1 cup). Strain it using a strainer. Add this to the vegetables. Bring it to boil and cook for about 5 minutes over medium heat. Add turmeric powder at this point (if using).
  • Now bring the heat to low and add milk. Mix it. 
  • Add fried vegetables and cook over medium heat for another 3-4 minutes. Add required salt and sugar and check seasoning in between. Turn off the heat and mix with ghee.
  • Lastly sprinkle panchforon powder and it's ready to serve.
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Sunday, June 29, 2014

Ka(n)chalonka Murgi

Well...this is not for faint-hearted people ;)
Why? Oh, the main ingredient of this dish is green chilli! This is "Ka(n)chalonka Murgi" aka Bengali style green chilli chicken curry. This is one of my family-favourite and a very easy to cook item without too many spices. If you like spicy food then you are just gonna love it, I bet! But don't worry if you like mild dishes also. Because you can adjust it's spice-level without destroying it's actual flavor.
Green chilli has a beautiful strong aroma that adds extra zing to this item. I am using at least 20 medium-spicy green chillies to my dish. But if you like a mild dish, you can reduce it to 10-12 chillies and de-seed them. Or you can use not so spicy green chillies for the flavor. Coming to recipe now.
Yield 4 servings
Ingredients for "Ka(n)chalonka Murgi":

  1. Chicken 600 gm (medium pieces with bone)
  2. Green chilli 20+4 pieces (I used medium hot chillies)
  3. Coriander leaves 1 bunch 
  4. Onion 2 medium (sliced)
  5. Garlic 8-10 fat cloves
  6. Ginger 1 inch piece
  7. Lime juice 1 table spoon
  8. Sour curd 1/2 cup (beaten with 1/2 teaspoon salt and a pinch of sugar)
  9. Whole garam masala (1 piece cinnamon stick, 3 cardamom pods and 3 cloves)
  10. Salt according to taste
  11. Sugar 1/2 tea spoon 
  12. Turmeric powder 2-3 pinches (optional..I used)
  13. Cooking oil 4-5 table spoon (I used mustard oil)
How to prepare "Ka(n)chalonka Murgi":
  • Wash and pat dry chicken pieces with a kitchen towel.
  • Make a paste with 20 green chillies, coriander leaf, ginger and garlic.
  • Marinate chicken with beaten sour curd, spice paste and turmeric powder (if using). Leave it covered for 30 minutes.
  • Now heat oil in a pan. Add crushed whole garam masala. Let them crack and get fragrant.
  • Add onion slices and pinch of salt. Fry until soft, translucent and lightly pink. Now add marinated chicken. Reduce the heat and cook for 4-5 minutes uncovered. 
  • Cover the pan let it release water and cook. Stir occasionally to avoid burning at the bottom of the pan. Now take out  the lid cook over medium flame until oil separates completely from spices. Now add required salt. Mix well. 
  • Add 1/2 cup hot water and cook covered over medium flame for 4-5 minutes. Add 4 chillies (cut into quarter lengthwise) and sugar . Mix well. Check seasoning. Turn off the heat and add lime juice.
  • "Ka(n)chalonka Murgi" is ready to serve. It pairs well both with roti or rice :)
For regular updates, just click the "like" button of my Facebook page. You can follow me also in NetworkedBlogs . Thank you and wish to see you again. Happy cooking till then :)

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Lauki Chane ki Daal

I was thinking of making something different and easy with "Lauki" (bottle gourd) that pairs well with roti and ended up making "Lauki Chane ki Daal". This is absolutely a healthy yet tasty side dish that you can serve with roti or rice. And not to miss..this is of course a curry in hurry! The only simple twist I have added, is an unusual spice, fennel seed. And it made a very pleasant and aromatic difference in my curry. Honestly, this is something I will recommend highly! 
Yield 4-5 servings
Ingredients for "Lauki Chane ki Daal":
  1. Split Bengal gram/Chana daal 1 cup (soaked in water for 2 hours,washed and drained)
  2. Bottle gourd 1 medium (washed , peeled and chopped in medium cubes or sticks)
  3. Tomato 1 large (chopped)
  4. Ginger paste 1 table spoon
  5. Green chilli 2 (make a can add or reduce according to your spice tolerance)
  6. Fennel seed 1 heaped table spoon (soak for couple of hours and make a paste)
  7. Chilli powder 1/2 tea spoon
  8. Turmeric powder as needed
  9. Garam masala powder 1/2 tea spoon
  10. Salt according to taste
  11. Sugar 1 table spoon 
  12. Asafoetida/hing 1/4 tea spoon
  13. Cumin seed 1 tea spoon
  14. Bay leaf 2
  15. Dry red chilli 1
  16. Oil 2 table spoon
How to prepare "Lauki Chane ki Daal":
  • Heat oil in a pressure cooker. Sprinkle hing and cumin seed, bay leaf, dry red chilli. Give it few quick stirs until aroma comes out.
  • Add in chopped tomato followed by ginger paste, chilli paste and fennel seed paste and salt. Cook over medium to high flame until oil separates from spices and spices are nicely aromatic. Keep stirring and scraping the bottom of cooker as required. Mix with chilli powder, turmeric powder and garam masala powder. Few nice stirs.
  • Add chana daal to the spice. Mix and cook over high for 3-4 minutes. Then goes chopped bottle gourd. Mix and stir over high for 2-3 minutes. Add half cup to 3/4 cup water (bottle gourd will release some water, so don't add too much water). Bring it to shimmer and add sugar. Cheek seasoning.
  • Cook on medium until 3 whistles. 
  • Let it cool down and open the cooker once the steam comes out completely. "Lauki Chane ki Daal" is now ready to serve.
  • You can add chopped coriander leaves while serving...I did not add though.
  • I served "Lauki chane ki Daal" with roti and salad. This can be served with rice as well.
For regular updates, just click the "like" button of my Facebook page. You can follow me also in NetworkedBlogs . Thank you and wish to see you again. Happy cooking till then :)

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Chirer Pulao

"Chire" means flattened rice in Bengali. "Chirer Pulao or Polao" is a very common Bengali snack. Mostly eaten as breakfast or a very common lunch-box item. At least, it was almost a regular tiffin during my school days! However, this is a really easy and nutritious dish. Also you won't have to think about the "calorie"-thing! I follow the same way, my Ma used to do.
Yield 2 servings
Ingredients for "Chirer Pulao" :
  1. Chire / flattened rice/ Poha 1 cup (washed well and drained)
  2. Potato 1 small (finely chopped and washed)
  3. Carrot 1 small (washed and finely chopped)
  4. Beans 3-4 (washed and finely chopped)
  5. Green peas 1/2 cup (I did not have at that time)
  6. Onion 1 medium (finely chopped)
  7. Green chilli 1 chopped
  8. Cashew nuts few 
  9. Bay leaf 1 (crushed)
  10. Salt according to taste
  11. Turmeric powder few pinch
  12. Sugar 1 tea spoon
  13. Oil or ghee 1 table spoon (I use oil)
How to prepare "Chirer Pulao" :
  • Heat ghee/oil in a pan. Add bay leaf. Stir for a moment. Add cashew nuts and fry until lightly golden.
  •  Add chopped onion. Fry until soft and lightly pinkish in color. 
  • Add potato, carrot, beans and peas. Mix with salt and turmeric powder. Fry over high for a minute and then reduce the heat to lowest. Cover and cook until vegetables are cooked.
  • Add green chilli and sugar. Mix very well. And finally add washed "chire" to it. Stir to mix .Cook for a minute and turn off the heat.
  • "Chirer Pulao" is ready to serve.
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Rava Idli

Since I am maintaining a low-calorie diet for last few months (yes, this time with success!), cooking has become a real task! Always I need to search for something nutritious, low -calorie yet tasty and off course it has to be filling. Idli is one of the most healthy Indian breakfast dishes. If it is Rava Idli (semolina idli), then the whole thing becomes much lighter and easier. Easier, because you don't need to soak rice and lentil and then grind or ferment. This is instant version of idli. Lighter and lower in calorie, as we are not using rice or lentil in's only semolina. But most of the times I add some vegetables to it.
Sharing the way I make it.

Yield 8-10 Idlis
Ingredients for Rava Idli :

  1. Rava /semolina /suji 1 cup
  2. Thick sour curd 3/4 cup 
  3. Water 1/4 cup 
  4. Beans 2 (finely chopped)
  5. Carrot 1/4 of a medium carrot (finely chopped)
  6. Red onion 1/4 of a medium onion (finely chopped)
  7. Ginger 1/2 tea spoon (finely chopped)
  8. Chilli 1 (finely chopped)
  9. Curry leaves few 
  10. Cashew nuts 6-7 (broken in pieces)
  11. Black mustard seeds 1 tea spoon
  12. Bengal gram 2 table spoon (soaked)
  13. Asafoetida 1 fat pinch
  14. Oil 1 table spoon + little more to grease idli stand
  15. Salt to taste 
  16. Eno fruit salt 1 tea spoon (flat/leveled) not use any flavor, use original one.
How to prepare Rava Idli :
  • Heat up a pan with oil and temper with hing, bengal gram, mustard seeds and curry leaves. Stir continuously until it's fragrant. Now add broken cashew nuts and fry till they are light golden.
  • Reduce the flame and add semolina at this point. Stir continuously and cook over low flame until rava changes it's colour to very lighter shade of golden (do not fry too much). Shift this mixture to a mixing bowl.
  • Now add all vegetables to rava mixture. Add salt. Mix very well.
  • Beat curd and water to smooth in a separate bowl. Add half of this curd to rava and vegetable mixture. Mix well. Now add rest of the curd to it. Mix again.
  • Heat 1 glass water in a deep pan (which should have a tight fitting lid which can accommodate the idli stand) and bring it to boil. Cover it with a lid and keep the flame low. Use a proper idli cooker if you have one.
  • Now grease the the idli moulds with little oil.
  • Back to the batter. Check the batter..use a splash of water if it seems too thick (do not add water if not necessary). Mix with a spoon. Now add Eno. Mix with light hands. Do not mix too much after adding Eno. Put 2 tea spoon batter to each idli mould.
  • Now steam on medium heat for 10 minutes. Take the stand out from steamer. Rest it for 2-3 minutes and then unmould idlis with a knife or end of a spoon..
  • Serve hot with Sambar and chutney .
For regular updates, just click the "like" button of my Facebook page. You can follow me also in NetworkedBlogs . Thank you and wish to see you again. Happy cooking till then :)

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