Holidays are here, and there is no Christmas without cookies in our house! Whether they are for Santa, gifting or pampering my friends, we just have to have a big batch of delicious cookies ready. This year I am changing up the flavors a bit to add a little more fun and surprise to it, so instead of plain vanilla flavors, I added a touch of citrus and cardamom to enhance the already yummy cookies.
3 cups- All purpose flour
1 cup/2 sticks -Softened unsalted butter
1 large – egg at room temp
3/4 tsp – baking powder
1 tsp – green cardamom powder
2 tbs – Orange zest
1/2 tsp – Vanilla extract
1 tbs – Milk
1/4 tsp – salt
1 cup – Sugar
Powdered sugar for rolling out the dough
In a bowl sift flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. Place Softened butter and sugar in large bowl of electric stand mixer and beat until fluffy and light in color. Add egg, milk, vanilla, cardamom and orange zest and beat to combine. Put mixer on low speed, gradually add flour, and beat until mixture pulls away from the side of the bowl. Remove the dough and warp in cling wrap , and refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour or even the night before baking the cookies .
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Sprinkle surface where you will roll out dough with powdered sugar. Remove wrapped dough from refrigerator, sprinkle rolling pin with powdered sugar, and roll out dough to 1/4-inch thick. Cut into desired shape, place at least 1-inch apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment, or silicone baking mat, and bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until cookies are just beginning to turn brown around the edges. Rotate the cookie sheet halfway through baking time. Let sit on baking sheet for 5 minutes after removal from oven, and then move on wire rack and cool completely. Serve as is, or use icing as desired.
Dhansak is a one pot goodness originating among the Parsi Zoroastrian community in India , this dish has elements of Persian and Gujarati cuisine . The recipe can look very long and intimidating but it is really an easy one , this dish is not only very delicious but also nutritious and here i will share the recipe that my mom shared and the one I grew up with . Serve it up with a special rice made with caramelized onions and a quick salad . This dish is seasoned with a special Dhansak masala that you can choose to make at home or obtain it online and Indian store .
I will mention substitutes for some of the things in the ingredients list You may make this dish vegetarian by leaving the meat out .
If you make this dish with without the meat , just cook the lentils as mentioned and then saute the onions to golden brown , with the whole spices, ginger, garlic and then add the cooked lentils with the masala to that . Simmer as mentioned and then serve .
Dhansak masala ( Spice Powder recipe )
1 cup whole corriander seeds
1/4 cup cumin seeds
1 tbs pepper corns
1 tbs fenugreek seeds
1 tbs black mustard seeds
8 to 10 whole dried red chillies
1 1/2 tbs or turmeric powder
3 bay leaves
1 -2 cinnamon sticks
6 to 8 green cardamoms
1 tsp ginger powder
Roast all the whole spices on a low flame just enough to warm and toast them: cinnamon , cardamom, bay leaves , coriander , peppercorns, cumin , fenugreek, whole chillies . Grind all this to a fine powder , mix in the ginger powder and turmeric powder and store in an air tight container .
Ingredients for prepping the meat
1 1/2 pound goat meat
1 large onion sliced
1 tbs of ginger paste
6 to 7 cloves of peeled who garlic
1 tbs coriander powder
1 tsp chilli powder
3 -green cardamom
4- 4 to 5 peppercorns
4 to 5 – cloves
1 tsp – sugar
3 tbs -Any Neutral cooking oil
just a little sate to taste to season the meat about 1/2 tsp
Ingredients for Prepping the lentils
1/4 cup – Red lentils
1/4 cup – Pegion peas
1/4 cup – Bengal gram lentil
1/4 cup – yellow mung lentil
1 medium – Potato quartered
1 small – Eggplant quartered
2 medium – Tomatoes Chopped
1/2 cup – Red pumpkin medium dice or Substitute with butternut squash
1/2 cup – Bottle gourd medium dice or substitute with peeled and chopped zucchini .
1/2 cup – Fresh, frozen fenugreek leaves or 1 tbs of dried fenugreek after soaking for 15 mins in warm water . or leave it out all together.
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
Heat oil on medium flame in a dutch oven or a heavy bottom pan , add the whole spices , sugar and onions saute untild the onions are golden brown , now add ginger and garlic saute this for 30 seconds ,add the coriander powder , chilli powder and the meat , sear the meat on high flame for about a 1 , Add warm water ,cover and leave to slow cook until fork tender .
While the meat cooks lets prep the lentils .
Wash and soak the lentils for 2 hours in warm water or over night if you like . Put all the lentils in your instant pot , add water enough to cover the lentils , add all the vegetables , turmeric and cook for 35 mins , natural release . Add salt to taste and mash all the lentils with a hand blender or potato masher .
Putting it all Together.
Once the meat is fork tender , add the, 1 to 2 Tbs Dhansak masala ( spice powder), cooked and mashed lentils to the pot of the meat , and simmer for another 8 to 10 minutes , add some chopped mint leaves optional . and serve with steam rice or traditional Parsi brown rice .
It is that time of the year in India where Durga puja and Navratri festivals have begun, where the celebration of good over evil is celebrated and the goddess is welcomed home. During these festivals food is a very important part of the celebrations, be it street food, home made delicacies or even restaurants. This year due to Covid no festival or holiday will be celebrated in the usual way, and many will not be able to gather with friends and family, or be a part of the grand parades, gatherings and enjoy the street food stalls. Still, we can surely recreate these memories and enjoy them with loved ones in our homes. I am going to share one such fun food recipe with you – Mughlai paratha.
I will be sharing a vegetarian and non vegetarian version, and also substitutes for vegan options. Be sure to watch my videos for both the vegetarian and non-vegetarian versions, as this recipe has a few parts that are a bit more involved.
Soft Tofu can be used instead of paneer in the filling
Heavy cream can be replaced by coconut cream
Nuts are optional.
All three versions will require the same dough with different fillings .
2 cups- Plain flour
1/2 tsp- Salt
21/2 tsp- oil
Warm water as needed to make a soft dough .
In a mixing bowl add the flour, salt, oil and mix well. Gradually add warm water to make a soft dough. Cover and set aside to rest.
1 cup – grated paneer (tofu for vegans)
1 cup-grated cauliflower
1/2cup- crushed frozen peas
1/4 cup- grated carrots
1 medium potato- boiled and mashed
1/4 cup -onion finely chopped
1/2 inch-ginger grated
2 cloves -garlic grated
1-2 green chillies chopped
1 tsp- chilli powder
1 tsp- coriander powder
1 tsp- cumin powder
1/4- tsp turmeric powder
3 tbs – toasted crushed peanuts (optional)
3 tbs- raisins chopped
1-2 tbs- have cream (coconut cream for vegans)
1 tsp-Mango powder/ Amchur or lime juice
1 tsp- garam masala
2 tbs flour + water to make paste
2 tsp – oil
Salt to taste
Heat a pan on a medium flame and add oil. Next add the onions and saute until golden on the edges. Add the ginger, garlic , green chilli and saute for another 30 seconds. Add the carrots, cauliflower, peas and saute this for a minute, then add the turmeric, chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and salt to taste. At this point add the nuts and raisins and stir well. Now add the paneer and mashed potato and mix everything again. Taste and adjust the salt at this point.
Remove the filling in a plate and mix in the garam masala and cream and mix everything well, letting it cool down to room temperature.
1 pound -ground lamb/chicken
1/2 cup- chopped onions
1 inch – ginger grated
3 cloves- garlic grated
1-2- green chillies chopped
1 tsp- chilli powder
1 tsp- coriander powder
1 tsp- cumin powder
1 tsp- garam masala
1/4 tsp – turmeric powder
1 tsp- lime juice
1 small- red onion sliced
2 beaten- eggs
Heat a pan on a medium flame, add onions and saute until golden. Add the ginger, garlic and chillies and saute for 30 seconds. Add the meat, all the dry spices , chilli powder, coriander, cumin , turmeric , peanuts , salt to taste and cook until all the moisture is dried up. Now add the garam masala and turn off the flame. Let the filling cool down completely before rolling the paratha.
Rollingandcookingtheparatha ( watch the video for a better view of this part )
Meatparatha– Take a little larger than golf ball size dough and roll it into a fairly thin flat oval. Add 4 tbs of meat filling in the center and spread it out a little vertically also spread 2 tbs of the beaten egg onto the meat and a few chopped red onion and now cover the filling by folding all four sides one by one, sealing all the meat and edges .
Vegetarianparatha -Take a little larger than golf ball size dough and roll it into a fairly thin flat oval. Add 4 tbs of veg filling in the center and spread it out a little vertically and now cover the filling by folding all four sides one by one, sealing all the edges with paste made with flour and water.
Heat a pan on medium high flame with 4 tbs of oil and put the paratha in the pan and fry on both sides until nice and golden brown. Cut into pieces and serve with ketchup!
Shahi Chicken Korma… what is Shahi? A term for royal in reference to the imperial court of Mughal Empire. What is korma? a mildly spiced meat or vegetable dish often made with yogurt, cream or nuts or all three for special occasions. All this can sound intimidating but with little prep and patience you can make this dish and give yourself and friends a tour of the royal tastes. This chicken korma is perfect for a special occasion or a weekend treat as it is very rich in texture.
Making the korma will require a few easy preps that you can do ahead of time, lets walk through them.
To make the the crispy brown onions, thinly slice one large onion ( i use a mandolin ). In a deep pan or small wok heat 2 inches oil on medium low flame for deep frying . Once the oil is hot add the onions and fry them on a low medium flame. Carefully watch them as they should turn golden brown and crispy not dark brown, or your korma will taste bitter. Drain on paper towel and let it cool completely. Store them in an air tight container until ready to use.
Take 6 to 7 unsalted raw cashews and boil them for about 4 to 5 minutes Once slightly cool make a smooth paste of it in a blender with the help of just a few table spoons of water ( I used just 3 tbs). Store in a container in the fridge until ready to use.
Grind all these whole spices in a coffee grinder to make your garam masala spice mix powder. I usually make this fresh but you may store in an airtight bottle to use for any recipe that requires garam masala. This is the garam masala i use for when i want a good fragrant one.There are store bought ones but they have a lot more ingredients that i think over power this dish.
The above steps were the only major pre prep that is required to make this dish.
2 Pounds of Chicken cut in to 2 inch pieces . I used bone in chicken as i find it helps keep the chicken moist, more flavorful and tender. If you prefer boneless thats fine too, just adjust your cooking times (boneless tends to cook a lot faster).
1 cup – crispy brown onions
1 tbs- ginger paste or grated
1tbs- garlic paste or grated
2 tbs- cashew paste
3 tbs- plain greek yogurt
1/3- cup of heavy cream
1/4- cup cooking oil
11/2 tsp- chilli powder
1 tbs- corriander powder
1 tsp-cumin powder
1 tsp- of garam masala
2 pinches of saffron
1 -bay leaves
1tbs- sliced almonds
1tsp- sliced pistachios
1/2 cup- water if needed to adjust the consistency
salt to taste
Heat a Dutch oven or any heavy bottom pot on a medium flame with the 1/4 cup of oil. Once the oil is heated, add the bay leaf and pepper corns and saute for a few seconds before adding the chicken along with the ginger garlic paste. Sear on medium high for a couple minutes.
Once the meat is seared add the chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and stir well . Cover and cook for 7 to 8 minutes on a medium low flame. While that is cooking, in a blender add the brown onions with the greek yogurt and blend to make a thick paste.
After 7 to 8 minutes of cooking add the brown onion and yogurt paste to the chicken along with salt to taste and stir well. Cover and cook for another 7 minutes on low medium heat. Uncover and add the cashew paste, cream, raisins, almonds, pistachios and saffron. Cover and cook for another 4 to 5 minutes. Once done sprinkle a tsp of the garam masala that you made and and the optional 1 tsp of rose water if you have. Serve hot with naan or rice . Enjoy the royal experience!
Vegetable cutlets are one of my favorite weekend snacks. Having them with a cup of tea it is just perfect! I remember as a child In my family these were favorite appetizer to serve up for birthday parties, or weekend get-togethers. They also make make a fun meal for the family and a perfect way to get your fill of choice vegetables served up as a burger or appetizer. These crisp, crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside patties are vegan which be used for vegan burgers as well, just switch it with vegan cheese and mayo.
Tip – I have used raw vegetables to make these patties because I like the crunch but you may steam the vegetables if you like.
I have pulsed the vegetables in my food pro for the fine chop but you may finally chop them or grate them if you like .
I have used boiled yukon gold potatoes but you may used boiled russet potatoes as well.
4 potatoes – boiled and mashed
2 carrots – pulsed in food pro or finely chop
1 small beetroot – pulsed or finely chopped
1/4 cup frozen peas – pulsed or finely chopped
1/4 cup green beans – pulsed or finely chopped
1 inch of ginger – grated
2 green chili – finely chopped
3 tbs rice flour
3tbs bread crumbs ( I used panko bread crumbs )
1 tsp -pepper powder
1 tsp- cumin powder
1 tsp-all spice powder (optional)
1 tsp – coriander powder(optional)
1tsp- chaat masala or lemon juice
3 tbs- cornstrach
3tbs – all purpose flour
breadcrumbs to coat
salt to taste
oil to shallow fry
In a large mixing bowl add the boiled potatoes and mash them well. Now add the all the finely chopped vegetables , ginger , chillies, spices, lemon juice and salt to taste. Combine everything well with your hands , taste and adjust the seasonings as needed. Add the three tablespoons of rice flour, three tablespoons of bread crumbs for binding and incorporate it all well and form patties of the desired size and shape.
Set up the breading line by making a pouring consistency slurry with cornstarch and flour, lay out the remaining bread crumbs in a plate.
In a nonstick pan add oil for shallow frying and heat it up on a medium flame. Now dip the patties in the slurry, coat them with breadcrumb on all sides and fry them on both side until golden brown. serve hot with sauce of choice or as burgers .
Basic Cilantro Mint chutney .
1 cup – Fresh cilantro
1/2 cup – Fresh mint leaves
1 to 2 – hot green chili
1/2 tsp- cumin seeds
1/2tsp – Sugar
Juice of one lemon
salt to taste
Blend all the chutney ingredients into a smooth paste add a few tablespoons of water if required. Serve with any appetizer or sandwich/burger spread .
Chili chicken is one of my family’s favorites to order in Indian restaurants . This very flavorful dish is inspired by Asian spices and many such dishes have crossed borders and are relished.
Some of the most delicious and satisfying meals are simple, and this is a great example! With just a few ingredients you can make it at home and dazzle everyone with this amazing, flavorful chili chicken.
Spicy, sweet and tangy, chili chicken can be served as an appetizer, or a main course rounded out with fried rice or noodles. While historically this dish is deep fried, I am going to show you how to do it with an air fryer for extra simplicity and super taste.
2 pounds – Chicken thighs cut into bite size pieces
Marinade for the Chicken:
3 tbs corn starch
3 tbs all porpuse flour
1 egg beaten
3 tbs soya sauce
1/2 tsp of white pepper powder
2 to 3 tsp of oil
5 tbs of soya sauce plus 3 tsp to season the chicken
1 tbs of chili sauce ( add more if needed)
2 tsp of vinegar
1/3 cup water
1 medium onion cut in to squares or triangles
1 large bell pepper cut in to squares or triangles .
2 serrano chillies cut in strips length wise
2 scallions green part cut length wise
1/2 tbs of ginger finely chopped
2 tbs of garlic finely chopped
In a large mixing bowl add the chicken pieces and season with 3 tsp of soya sauce and pepper powder. Mix well , adding one beaten egg, cornstarch, flour and 2 to 3 tsp of oil. Mix until well coated.
Line your air fryer basket with liner or grease with oil and arrange the chicken pieces in one layer. Cook on 400 degrees for 15 mins checking in between to get a nice golden crispy fried chicken. See my video to see how awesome it looks!
To prepare the sauce, mix soya sauce, vinegar, chili sauce and 1/3 cup of water. Set this aside for now.
Heat a wok on a medium high flame and add 3 tbs of oil. As the oil heats add the ginger and cook for about 15 to 20 seconds, then add the garlic and green chilis and saute for another 15 seconds. As that is done add the onions and peppers and saute on a high flame for about 30 seconds. Careful, do not over cook here since we need to maintain slight crunch to the onions and peppers. Now add the air fried chicken to the wok and pour the soya sauce mixture over it all. Sprinkle white pepper powder, then stir fry to mix well and quickly add the cornstarch slurry and mix well again. Turn off the flame and add the green onions to garnish. Serve hot with noodles, fried rice or steam rice .
I started my small kitchen gardening about 3 years ago, and the first thing I experimented with was tomatoes. Just that took one year of no results, but last year was a success with tons of delicious tomatoes, and this year as well we had a bumper crop of them.
Tomatoes are something we use pretty much every other day, be it in salads, soups, curries, sandwiches or even with just a sprinkle of some salt, pepper and a drizzle of olive oil — yum yum!
This time with all excess of tomatoes I wanted to try something new, so I experimented with making a tomato jam/chutney, and it turned out amazing. Here is the recipe.
5 large green unripe tomatoes ( roughly chopped )
1 medium -onion finely chopped
1 inch -ginger finely chopped
3 cloves – garlic finely chopped
1/2 tsp of lightly crushed fennel seeds
1/2 tsp – pumpkin pie spice powder
1/2 tsp- cayenne powder
1 cup – sugar
3 to tbs- oil
salt to taste
Heat one tbs of oil in a pot over medium low flame , add the chopped tomatoes and cook until all the tomato is soft like a thick pulp. Set aside.
Heat another pot on a medium low flame and add the remaining 2 tbs of oil, and add the crushed fennel seeds, onions and saute until light golden brown.
Now add ginge and garlic and saute for about 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes back in, along with the onions, cayenne, pumpkin spice powder, salt to taste and 1 cup of sugar. Cook this for another 2 to 3 minutes, or until it reaches a jam like consistency. Cool it and store in air tight container in the fridge.
When it comes to street food there is not much better than Mumbai! (or Bombay as we used to call it when growing up).
There is always something rustic and fulfilling about street style meals. I always enjoyed it most during the monsoons or cool summer nights, the wooden carts filled with each street hawkers delicacy, his or her secret recipe and tastes.
One such dish is the kheema hara masala. This is ground lamb, beef, or chicken cooked in aromatic spices and some greens to give it the taste and look of Hara which literally means green. As complicated as the name might sound its quite easy to make and even easier to relish, so lets get cooking!
2 pounds – ground lamb
1- potato medium diced (optional)
1tbs- garlic paste
1tbs- ginger paste
1 large -onion finely chopped
1/4 cup -spinach blanched
2 tbs-fresh/dry fenugreek leaves or dill leaves
1/2 cup- cilantro
2 -green or red tomato finely chopped
2 -green chillies slit length wise
1/2cup- frozen peas (or fresh cooking times might vary )
1 tsp- garam masala
1tsp -chilli powder
1tsp- garam masala
1tsp-whole cumin seeds
1-whole inch stick cinnamon
5- whole peppercorns
4 – whole cloves
3- whole green cardamoms
3-4 tbs of cooking oil
Salt to taste
In a blender, add the blanched or frozen spinach, fenugreek or dill leaves, cilantro and blend it into a smooth paste and set aside.
In a heavy bottom wok or pan heat oil on a medium flame. As that heats up add all the whole spices and in about 15 seconds add the onions and saute until golden brown on the edges. Add the the ginger garlic and saute for about 30 seconds. Now add the ground meat and keep stirring so that it won’t clump up, searing it well fora few minutes.
Add the corriander powder, chilli powder, and turmeric powder, mixing well. Next add the tomatoes, add salt to taste, stir well cover and cook for about 5 minutes.
After five minutes add the potatoes cover and cook for 7 minutes. Now add the green paste, green chillies and cook until most of the moisture is gone (about 5 minutes) after which you add the frozen green peas (if using fresh peas cook longer until peas are cooked) and garam masala.
Cover and cook for a couple more minutes, then turn off the flame and serve with your choice of bread or rice.
Some recipes can take you to so many nostalgic moments and make you feel ahhh i wish i could have relived that feeling again just as it was , but most times we can just try to relive them by recreating them in our own way. I have many such nostalgic moments about food made by both my grandmas’ who were exceptional cooks, my dad, my mom and my sister are great cooks too. It sort of is an inheritance and each one added their own style to it. I feel blessed that I have so many memories to share with all of their recipes. Today I want to share one such recipe — Coconut and Tomato soup. There is not much to this recipe, very simple to make with simple ingredients but packed with so much flavor. For me this soup brings up memories of sitting with my Dadima (maternal grandma) on the table and enjoying this kadhi/soup with a plate of steamed rice and seasonal veggies for a hot summer afternoon lunch. Before we get cooking let me just thank my Dadima in heaven for showing me how to add such extraordinary flavors in for such simple recipes.
2 Cups -Fresh coconut milk extracted from frozen or fresh coconut /Or Canned .
2 medium sized- ripe tomato finely chopped (my preference Roma tomato)
1 tsp – cumin seeds
1 – green chilli slit lengthwise (add more if u like it hot )
5-6 – curry leaves fresh or dry
1 to 2 tbs- rice flour
1- tbs cooking oil
salt to taste .
In a mixing bowl add your coconut milk and rice flour and whisk it well blended and no lumps are seen , set this aside .
Heat oil in a pot on medium flame once the oil is hot add cumin seeds and cook for a few seconds , add curry leaves , green chillies and the tomatoes , cook it for about 30 seconds and add the coconut milk bring it to a slow simmer for 7 to 8 minutes once it is slightly thickened but yet soupy turn of the flame and season with salt as per your taste , serve just soup or the way my Dadima did with some rice , enjoy !.
Tres Leches is a very popular cake in Latin America and Mexico. Its name literally means “three milks” — an apt description of this delicious treat! Traditionally this cake does not use butter , this cake is drenched in three different types of milk.
Today I am going to share with you my Tres leches recipe with an Indian twist. I am also going to use butter in this recipe because I want a dense cake (you will see why!), and some additional Indian flavors to give this cake the twist. So let’s get baking!
2 cups – all purpose flour
2 tsp- baking powder
1/4 tsp -salt
1 cup- sugar
3/4th cup- milk
1 tsp – vanilla extract
1 stick – melted butter
2 tbs – ground pistacios and almonds
1/4 tsp- ground cardamom
for the Tres leches milk mixture
1/2 cup whole milk
14 ounce- can sweetened condensed milk
12 ounce -evaporated milk
2 to 3 pinches -of saffron
1/2 tsp- ground cardamom
for the frosting
1 1/2 cup -heavy whipping cream
1 tsp – powdered sugar
1 tsp – Rose water
chopped almonds and pistacios
dried rose petals (optional).
In a bowl or measuring cup – add whole milk , evaporated milk, condensend milk , saffron and cardamom. Stir well and set aside.
Heat oven to 350 F. Line a 13*9 – inch pan with parchment paper and lightly brush with melted butter. In a medium bowl sift flour, salt and baking powder.
In a large mixing bowl, beat sugar and butter on medium speed for 30 seconds. Beat in eggs, milk and vanilla. After another 30 seconds gradually add the flour and ground pistachio and almonds. Combine well into a batter. Spread this batter evenly in the prepared pan.
Bake for 25 -30 mins, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool the cake for 30 mins. Once cooled poke the cake with a toothpick all over the top, and pour all the milk mixture to soak the entire cake. Let it sit in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or best overnight.
In a stand mixer bowl add the heavy whipping cream and beat with the whisking attachment on low speed for a minute. As the cream starts to thicken add the powdered sugar and rose water, beat until stiff peaks form. Top the cake with the frosting and evenly spread , garnish with chopped pistachios, almonds and dried rose petals. Serve and enjoy!