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Category Archives: roti/parantha/puri

Puri and Potato Masala Recipe

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The temperature in Hyderabad is a beautiful 18 C in the early mornings and hovers around the 20’s at least till 9 AM. This is K’s favourite season and sometimes its tough to make out where he starts and the dog ends on the bed. Despite a thick furry coat, one can find Sage snuggled under the blankets with K post his early morning walks.

We planned to spend the weekend with K’s parent’s who live close by. But Sage by dinner time on Saturday, had decided he wanted to go back to ‘his’ house and the non-stop fuss was too much to take. All of us were disappointed, especially me, because I was so looking forward to some total cooking free R&R. Sunday breakfast was supposed to be Puri and Aloo Bhaji and all of us were disappointed we could not go as per plans.

This morning, when we woke up, we spoke again of the missed chance of eating puri and aloo. Anyone who knows me, will tell you that they cannot remember when I voluntarily filled a pan with oil to deep fry anything! Even this blog has very few deep-fried treats. But the beautiful winter morning called out for some indulgence and I set about making an elaborate (for me) breakfast.

Puri (Makes 10-12)

11/2 Cup                     Whole Wheat Flour (I used Ashirwaad Atta)

1/4 teaspoon            Salt

1 teaspoon                 oil

Oil for deep-frying

Water to make the dough

Add about 1/2 cup water to the flour and mix with your fingers, add water a little at a time as required to bring the dough together to make a firm yet soft dough. Apply the oil and knead for a minute. Cover and set aside for at least 15 minutes.

Divide the dough into 10 equal parts, roll into a smooth ball between your palms, flatten and roll out dusting with dry flour into a 4 inch disc. Ensure the puri is not too thin, else it will break / burst while frying.

Heat oil in a kadai, gently lower the rolled out puri and fry on medium high heat till it puffs up, turn over and fry on the other side. The puri should be lightly golden. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and drain on absorbent paper before serving while still hot.

Note: Adding a tablespoon of semolina while making the dough results in crisper puris, I didn’t add this since I forgot.

Aloo Bhaji (Serves 3-4)

1 medium Onion, Sliced

4 medium Potatoes, boiled and peeled

1 green chilli, slit

1/2 inch piece Ginger, grated

1/2 teaspoon Red Chilli Powder

1/4 teaspoon Turmeric / Haldi powder

1 teaspoon Mustard Seeds

1 teaspoon Urad Dal (Black Gram, husked)

1 tablespoon Chickpea Flour (Besan / Senagapindi)

2 Tablespoons Milk / water

10-12 Curry Leaves

2 tablespoons Fresh Coriander Leaves

Salt to taste

1 Teaspoon Lemon Juice + More to serve

1 Tablespoon Oil

In a pan, heat the oil and splutter the mustard seeds. Add the urad dal and fry till it is turning golden. Add the green chilli, grated ginger, curry leaves and sliced onions. Fry till the onions are turning translucent, about 1 minute.

Add the turmeric powder and red chilli powder fry for a half a minute.

Peel and chop the boiled potatoes into chunks. Add them to the pan, reduce the heat to low and mix well till they are coated with the rest of the ingredients.

Add 1/2 cup of water, salt to taste and cover and cook on low heat for 5 minutes. Stirring a couple of times.

Remove the lid off the pan and stir the curry. Add 1/4 cup water if you want more gravy, test for salt and spices and adjust as needed.

Mix the chickpea flour with the milk/ water and gently pour it into the curry while stirring, continue to cook for a minute till the curry gets thickened.

Take off the heat and cool for 5 minutes. Garnish with chopped fresh coriander and lemon juice, stir to mix and serve hot with puris.

Paneer Kathi Rolls ~ Or how to use extra rotis

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Paneer Kathi Rolls

Paneer Kathi Rolls

Stuck with extra rotis and don’t know what to do? Or tired of eating sabzi roti for a packed lunch? Here is an easy no fuss way to make Kathi rolls at home. I have deliberatedly omitted adding raw onions as a courtesy to a working lunch! but feel free to add them in the layers if you wish to!

Paneer Kathi Rolls (Serves 2)

Paneer                                                             100 grams, cubed small

Onion                                                               1 small, sliced

Tomato                                                            1 small diced

Garam Masala Powder                                  ½ teaspoon

Amchur Powder                                             ¼ teaspoon

Coriander Powder                                          ¼ teaspoon

Red Chilli Powder                                          a pinch

Salt                                                                  to taste

Oil                                                                    1 teaspoon

Lemon Juice                                                  a few drops

Chapathi                                                         4-5

For the Filling

Heat the oil and add the onions, fry them till they are translucent. Add the tomatoes and sauté for a few minutes till they begin to lose shape.

Add the red chilli, salt, amchur powder, garam masala and coriander powder and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the cubed paneer and cook covered for 4-5 minutes.

Make sure the paneer is not overcooked and is nice and fluffy. Add a few teaspoons of water if you would like, but it should not have a runny gravy.

Cool the filling mixture. Add the lemon juice and mix.

Spread out the chapathis on a work surface. Spoon over 2 tablespoons or more if needed of the paneer filling onto the chapathis and roll into a kathi roll. Fix it with a tootpick.

Lay out on a paper towel in the lunch box. Alternatively, wrap each kathi roll in foil and pack.

Quesadilla ~ From Scratch

quesadilla

quesadilla

I used to stuff leftover rotis with whatever curry of the day was available, grate cheese onto it and pan toast it till the cheese melted, not knowing that they had a fancy name! Imagine my joy when I realised that it was a very popular Mexican preparation! I love quesadillas. Usually with nice warm melty cheese inside. They are easy to make especially if you have lunch/ brunch with friends as you can make the components ahead of time and just assemble toast on demand.

I had a girls night out a few months ago and we made a Mexican spread… needless to say, the tortilla wraps and these quesadillas were a huge hit.

I’ve slacked off on the blogging …. catching up!

spinach and corn quesadilla

spinach and corn quesadilla

Quesadilla (Makes 6 servings)

Flour Tortillas                       6

Spinach                                    1 large bunch, washed and finely chopped

Corn                                           ¼ cup (fresh or frozen)

Cheese (such as cheddar)  1 cup, grated

Salt and pepper                      to taste

Onion                                          1 medium, sliced

Cumin powder                        ¼ teaspoon

Red Chilli Powder                  ¼ teaspoon

Vegetable Oil                           2 teaspoons

In a hot pan, heat one teaspoon of oil and add the onion and sauté till translucent. Add the corn and cumin powder and cook till the corn is half cooked. Add the finely chopped and well drained spinach and cook for 4-5 minutes till the water from the spinach has evaporated but the spinach is still a bright green colour. Cool this filling.

Heat the flour tortillas on a medium hot tava. Add the spinach and corn filling to one half of the tortilla and spread a few tablespoons of grated cheese over it. Fold the other half over it and press down with a flat spatula or a steel plate for 10-20 seconds.

Turn the tortilla over, drizzle a little oil on the edges and press down for 5-6 seconds till the cheese is melting. Remove from the tava, slice into wedges and serve hot with a salad, salsa and guacamole dip.

Repeat with all the tortillas. You can use any spicy curried filling instead of the spinach and corn one. Mushrooms, sautéed peppers, chicken or even curried Paneer can be used.

Baking ~ Wholegrain Pita Bread

Pita Bread

If you haven’t seen Saee’s blog or her videos, trust me when I say you are missing out on recipes which are simple, yet turn out very well. She has a knack of making recipes look very simple, yet they compel you to get into the kitchen and try them out. I watched her Pita Bread video and in 5 minutes, was warming water to dissolve yeast and measuring out atta (flour) to make Pita Bread.

Pita Bread has been on my list of must make/ bake for ages. I have baked very successfully with yeast including bread. I usually use my regular whole wheat roti / chappati atta to make most of my bakes including cake and muffins. To the store bought (i use Ashirwad multi grain) flour, i add equal quantities of jowar, bajra, ragi and barley flour to make up about 30%. This combination works for me. Feel free to use refined flour (maida) in combination with your wheat flour if you like. The texture of the Pita bread is grainier and I prefer that. If it  is your first time making Pita bread, I suggest you do take the time to watch the video.

I’ve made this several times again, but took pictures only the first time. We (Sage and I) polished off a large number of them with a quick dip I made by simply combining yogurt with bottled sauces such as Tabasco, chilly and tomato garlic.

Wholegrain Pita

Wholegrain Pita Bread (Makes 9-10 medium Pita Breads)

Ingredients

3 cups Flour (I used my home mixed multi grain, feel free to use whole wheat or a combination of Maida and Wheat – the original recipe uses all Maida)

2 teaspoon Yeast (I used dry yeast)

1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon salt

2-3 tablespoons Olive Oil

Method

In a cup of warm water, add the sugar and yeast and mix a bit. Leave it to prove in a warm spot for 15-20 minutes. This is the most crucial part of using yeast. You must check if the yeast is active, if it doesn’t froth up and bubble, the dough is not going to rise.

Add the salt to the flour in a large basin or bowl and mix with your fingers to incorporate fully. Make a well in the centre of the flour and add the yeast and water to it. Knead with your hands into a soft dough.

Pour the Olive oil over the dough and knead some more till it is soft, non sticky and elastic. Cover with a damp cloth and leave to rise for atleast 30 minutes, or till the dough has doubled.

Punch the dough gently and knead it for a minute. Divide into 9-10 equal portions and roll the dough like a ball of roti atta/ dough. Rest the dough for 10 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 200 F and roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface into a disc about 4 inches in diameter.

Place the rolled out Pita on a lightly greased and dusted baking tray, or line the tray with parchment paper. Bake for 5 minutes.

Remove from the oven, keep the Pita in a cloth lined basket. Repeat with all the dough. Serve warm with a dip of choice such as this low fat cheese dip.

Lachcha Paratha

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Lachcha Paratha

Lachcha Paratha

This is my very brave attempt at NaBloPoMo. Wish me luck gentle readers! I will be hoping to post here every day of this month. Hopefully I will have something to say that does not upset you too much and you will come and leave comments. I am very bummed that comments on this blog have fallen to an all time low even though visitors have skyrocketed. Why do you think that is?

Moving on to the Lachcha Paratha which is one of my favourite Indian Breads. It is a fancy roti and can be made with wheat flour instead of maida and doesn’t lose its sass. Just up my alley if you ask me!

Laccha Paratha (Makes 6)

 

Whole Wheat Flour     – 2 Cups

Oil                               – 4 tablespoons

Salt                              – to taste

Warm Water                – as per requirement for kneading

In a bowl, take the wheat flour and salt and mix well. Add the oil and rub it into the flour with your fingers.

Add the warm water a little at a time and knead into a firm yet elastic dough. Knead the dough a bit and leave to rest for 30 minutes.

Divide the dough into 6 equal parts and roll it out using a little dry flour into a roti about 6-7 inches in diameter. Using your fingers spread a teaspoon of oil evenly onto the rolled out dough. Pick up the ends of the rolled out roti and fold it like a handmade paper fan.

Once you have a pile of folds, hold the two ends and shake it a bit to elongate the dough. Roll it into a circle like a snail. Press down lightly and using a little dry flour, roll it out into a layered roti about 6 inches in diameter.

Cook the paratha on a hot griddle for a few minutes, basting with a little bit of oil as you turn it over. Repeat with all the other portions of dough and serve hot with a gravy or curry of choice.

Wish me luck and cheer me along for NaBloPoMo. Check out the other bloggers who are  doing this as well.

 

Tortillas from scratch and a Magazine Feature

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I know I shouldn’t be abandoning the blog as much as I do… but that’s the pattern I seem to follow…

In august, WOW Hyderabad which is the number one local magazine of Hyderabad, did a cover feature on people from different walks of life rediscovering and enjoying the kitchen. They featured 12 people. There was an actor, a fashion designer, a hotelier etc… and your’s truly. I’ve been called a lot of things, but for the first time I was called Hyderabad’s most popular Blogger. Am not sure if I deserve those words of praise, but am humbled that this little blog got me featured in a magazine.

It was nerve wracking to pose for the picture… but I enjoyed the fun interview with a nice guy who has been reading my blog and so knew my dog by his name! Have just been plain lazy about posting this here. So now is as good a time as ever.

Its also been almost a year now that I write a bi monthly feature with recipes for a local English daily called The Hans India. I need to find the features and scan and post them in a different section of this blog I guess, now that there are so many.

On that note, I leave you with a simple recipe to make Tortillas

Tortilla Wraps

Tortilla Wraps

Tortilla Wraps (Makes 6 Tortillas)

All Purpose Flour (Maida)      11/4 Cup

Baking Powder                             ½ teaspoon

Salt                                                   to taste

Butter                                             1 tablespoon

Water (to knead the dough)

For the Filling

Lettuce                                            1 cup

Fresh Vegetable Sticks             1 cup (such as sliced avocado, red/ yellow peppers, tomato slices etc)

Cooked Shredded Chicken or cooked Paneer slices

Baked Beans                                  (optional)

Salt and pepper to taste

Mix the baking powder and salt into the flour well and mix the butter to make it look like breadcrumbs. Add enough water to make a dough like chapatti. Knead it for a few minutes and leave it to rest for 20 – 30 minutes.

Divide the dough into six equal parts and roll out into rounds of about 6-7 inches. Heat a tava and lightly cook the tortilla on two sides till small brown spots appear and it is cooked. This is similar to making rotis but do not press down with the spatula or put directly onto the flame. Make all the tortillas and keep aside.

When the tortillas have cooled. Place the lettuce leaf in the middle of the tortilla, add a few vegetable sticks, few pieces of shredded chicken or Paneer and a few teaspoons of beaked beans, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roll up the tortilla tight and secure with a toothpick.

Repeat till all the tortillas are used up. Serve with a fresh salad, salsa and guacamole.

Muttai Kotthu Parota (Eggs with Minced Paratha) Recipe

kotthu-parota1

I’d never heard of this dish till before I lived in Coimbatore. A friend of mine took me out and this was what was ordered. The usual way is to use fresh rotis or Malabar parotas which are full of flakes and make this…. Kotthu parota literally translated means “minced parota”…. It is a fast food innovation in tamil nadu and some parts of Kerala. The ingredients are all cooked on this gigantic hot plate at roadside eateries and the sound of the metal flat spoon cutting the bits that go into the dish, clanging away can be heard from a long way off. As is with most street fast food, it is hot, delicious, with crispy bits of roti and easy on the pocket…. I soon saw kotthu parota being offered on the menus of all other kinds of restaurants. Made with egg, beef, chicken or minced meat, this is a versatile dish and can be custom made to please anyone. Needless to say I stuck to the version with egg that’s called Muttai Kotthu Parota (Egg minced parota)

 If this dish is judged purely on taste, it will pass with flying colours…. But if you were to judge by the fact that it is made up solely out of torn up rotis (in this case leftover)…. It can send mixed signals… but hey, if you love bread upma and idli upma, kotthu parota will tickle your tastebuds allright!! Its a great way to make use of any leftover rotis you may have collected…. The sheer effort of making them, makes me cry when I have to throw away rotis. God knows everyone loves piping hot rotis…and leftovers aren’t really sought after at our table…. Besan roti is one way of refreshing them….also check out Aamelet roti….

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