Potato Peas Pie

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I have to thank Donna Hay for introducing me to the filo pastry and various recipes related to it. A couple of months back I was watching her TV show Fast, Fresh and Simple in which she showed how to prepare a Spinach and Feta pie using filo pastry sheets. It was a very tough job to find the pastry sheets and finally my favorite store Dorabjee’s at Camp, Pune came to the rescue. (Personally I feel these ready to use pastry sheets are a little expensive but it also involves lot of effort to make one. So the choice is yours).

The first time I made it was impromptu and for filling I used mushrooms, onion and homemade paneer. A lot of things went haywire and caring for the pastry sheets is one hell of a job. But the second time everything went smooth and following is the result. I would definitely recommend this to all of you with its pros and cons. Enjoy!!

Ingredients:

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For filling:

Potatoes (boiled) – 4 medium sized roughly chopped
Green Peas (pealed) – 1 cup
Onion (finely chopped) – 1 medium sized
Garam masala – 1 teaspoon
Red chili powder – 1 teaspoon
Salt –to taste
Oil- 1 teaspoon
Parmesan cheese (grated) – to garnish

Filo Pastry sheets, each cut in to 5 inch square – 12
Butter – to brush

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Procedure:

  •  Cover the filo pastry sheets with wet muslin cloth to avoid drying up.
  • In a pan heat oil and sauté the onion till it turns transparent.
  • Add the green peas and mix well.
  • Add the roughly chopped potatoes and then add the garam masala, red chili powder and salt to taste.
  • Mix well and set it aside to cool.
  • Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  • Brush each filo pastry sheet with butter and place one on top of the other.
  • Divide the filling into 6 pastries leaving a 2 cm border.
  • Fold over the edges of the pastry to form a border.
  • Sprinkle it with grated parmesan.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or till the pastry is golden at 200 degrees Celsius.
  • Serve hot or the base might become a little soggy.

Tips:

You may try different types of filling like mushroom and paneer.

Vegetable Pulav

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I am in love with rice be it plain steamed rice, dal rice, varan bhat, bissi belle bhat, narali bhat… whatever can be added before bhat or rice ;) It runs in my family, my parents, mama’s everyone is a rice lover. Our meals do not end without the ultimate curd rice.

They say rice is one of the main causes for putting on fat, who are THEY? I don’t know or care for such they’s …. ;) I do believe anything in moderation can never hurt. So why worry. One such rice preparations is vegetable Pulav. This is very simple to prepare, but full of flavors and very filling.

The goodness of vegetables, dash of spice and the beautiful basmati rice makes a combination to die for.

So here is my version of the Vegetable Pulav

Like Donna Hay would say, fast, fresh and simple

I would also like to mention that this is the first post in the rice series. I’ll try to incorporate as many rice

dishes I can. If you have any recipes you would like to share do send me an email with your recipe and I will share it on the blog.

Ingredients:

Basmati Rice (thoroughly washed) – 1 cup
Cauliflower florets – ¼ cup
French beans (cut in thick long strips) – ¼ cup
Carrot (cut in thick long strips) – ¼ cup
Green Peas (pealed) – ¼ cup
Water- 1 ½ cup
Salt – to taste
Ghee/ Vegetable oil – 1 tablespoon
Cashew nuts – 5 -6
Green chilly – 1 (halved)

Spices:

Bay leaf – 2 leaves (dried)
Cinnamon sticks – 2 small
Cloves – 2-3
Peppercorn – 4-5

Procedure:

  • In a pressure pan add ghee or oil and add the green chilly along with all the spices mentioned under spices. Sauté on a low flame.
  • Add the cashew nuts and vegetables to this and mix well.
  • Now add the basmati rice and mix everything gently.
  • Add salt and then add water.
  • Once the water starts boiling, close the lid of the pressure pan and cook for 3 whistles.
  • Serve hot with raita, Papad, Sol kadhi, pickle.

Tips:

  • Wash the all the vegetables thoroughly.
  • You can also cook this rice in a pan on open stove, or a rice cooker. Adjust the time accordingly. The rice grains should be cooked well but not very sticky.

 

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Bhurji or Spicy Scrambled Eggs


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Hello everyone, this Girish and today I would be your chef for the day ;)

This is a very simple dish to prepare and enjoy specially when it’s raining outside and you are lazed to cook anything complex. Same situation made me prepare this recipe. It’s been raining and raining in Pune since 2-3 days. A typical Sunday with such a climate is a concoction for an amazingly lazy weekend. It was my cooking day so I decided to prepare today’s breakfast and chose one of the simplest yet tastiest dishes to go. I am egg lover since childhood. Boiled eggs, sunny side up, half fries, scrambled eggs.. you name it, I love it. Not to forget the Spicy egg curry :D

This is a go win situation for any amateur cook. You cannot go wrong with this dish. So give it a try and enjoy those lazy days.

Ingredients

4 eggs beaten
1 onion medium sized finely chopped
1 tomato medium sized finely chopped
1 tablespoon deseeded finely chopped green chilies
½ teaspoon mustard seeds
½ turmeric powder
¾ teaspoon garam masala
2-3 cloves of finely chopped garlic
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon coriander finely chopped for garnishing
Salt to taste

Procedure

  • Heat the oil in a pan and add mustard seeds, turmeric until mustard seeds crackle
  • Add finely chopped garlic and chilies, give it a stir. Tip in the onion and sauté well till onion is transparent
  • Add tomatoes, give a stir
  • Add garam masala, sauté till the tomatoes are soft or they break in
  • Add eggs and salt, keep stirring till the eggs are scrambled and mix well
  • Garnish with chopped coriander
  • Serve hot with rotis or bread

Tips

  • Add a little milk to the egg while beating to make it more soft
  • You can exclude the garam masala, if you do not like the extra spice
  • Can you also serve it on a tortilla or pita bread or buns

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Tomato Onion Chutney

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Being in love with south Indian food, dosas, idlis are a part of our breakfast and to go with it the common condiments are the tasty coconut chutney, malgapudi which we lovingly call as gun powder and sambhar.

One of my oldest memories of tomato chutney is from my school days when I stayed in Dombivali and we used to bring appam from a famous outlet called Dhanalakshmi. This is the time when my love for tomato chutney began. I can’t believe I had eaten all these wonderful dishes at maximum 10-15 rupees per plate. This was about 15 years back. I so miss that place. The best part about this was unlimited chutney and generous servings. It didn’t matter if the idlis or dosas were done with. The chutneys were finger licking good. ;) Thanks to my elder brother who introduced me to this. Nostalgic!!!!!

Recently we visited Dakshinayan, a well known restaurant in Pune famous for authentic south Indian dishes. Even though I found it to be a little expensive, most of the recipes were true to the palate, which is a rare experience in Pune. The moment the first dish was served, I was bowled over to see two ramekins, one filled with tomato chutney and another with onion chutney and that too unlimited!!! The taste of the tomato chutney lingered for hours together and I decided, no matter what I had to prepare this soon.

Here’s my take on my favourite chutney. Hope you too are a fan as well.

Ingredients:

Tomato – 3 medium sized diced
Onion – 1 medium sized diced
Garlic- 4 cloves peeled
Dried Red chillies – 1-2
Chana dal – 1 ½ Tablespoon
Salt – to taste
Oil – 1 teaspoon

Tempering:

Oil – 1 teaspoon
Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon
Curry leaves – 3-4

Procedure:

  • In a kadhai or a pan heat the oil mentioned under ingredients.
  • Fry the garlic cloves and chana dal till golden brown in colour and keep it aside on a plate.
  • In the same oil fry the dried red chillies till they turn a little brown. Transfer this too on the plate and let it cool.
  • In the remaining oil sauté the onion till transparent and then add the diced tomatoes and fry till the tomatoes are soft. Add salt during this process. Let this mixture cool down.
  • Transfer the tomato-onion mixture along with the fried garlic cloves, chana dal and dried red chillies in a grinder and grind everything together to a smooth paste. No need to add water. Transfer this to a bowl.
  • Temper this with the ingredients mentioned under tempering. Mix well and serve with dosa, idli, or paniyaram (appe).

Tips:

  • Try this chutney on bread as a spread. It tastes amazing.
  • This can be stored in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.

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Sol Kadhi

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An authentic maharashtrian thali will always have a delicious appetizer with a base of coconut milk. That’s sol kadhi. It’s a common food item from the coastal lines of Maharashtra and Goa. You can have it chilled as an appetizer before meal or with a little tempering added it can be served with steaming hot rice. Yumm!! Can’t beat that.

Kokam gives it a definite sour for which sol kadhi is known for. It’s a real soul food especially during summers. Well I like it any time of the year.

More about Kokam.

Ingredients:

Dried Kokam/ Aamsul / Mangosteen– handful
Coconut milk – 2 cups
Garlic – 3-4 cloves
Salt – to taste
Hot water – 1 cup

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Procedure:

  • Soak the dried kokam in the hot water for almost half an hour. Later squeeze out the juice from it and discard the remains of the squeezed kokam. You will get a thick pink colored juice.
  • In a blender mince the garlic cloves along with the coconut milk.
  • Now mix the kokam juice with the coconut milk infused with garlic.
  • Add salt as per taste.
  • Chill it in the refrigerator for 1 hour and serve cold.

Tips:

  • You may also try it with steamed rice.
  • It should have a soup like consistency, so if you have bought coconut milk do adjust the consistency as per your liking.
  • It is best to use freshly made coconut milk. In this case mince the garlic along with the scrapped coconut and add little warm water and then blend it. Sieve it and use this extract.