Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Chayote (Pear Squash) fry










I have seen this vegetable at the grocery store many times, and I will get close to grab a few when I see the folds and get nervous and walk away. Till finally this lent season, I decided to research on this scary looking vegetable, and take a leap of faith and give it a try!
Well, this dish, though totally experimental, turned out to be very good. It goes especially well with chapathis. Other variation to try of this dish is to add carrots, and potatoes to it, and another one is to add ground coconut (instead of ground cilantro as I added in the recipe below). Now that this vegetable is more “approachable”, I will be trying them out as well!


Ingredients


  1. Chayote – 4
  2. Green chillies – 2
  3. Turmeric – ¼ tspn
  4. Urad dal, mustard seeds, cumin – 1 tspn each
  5. Curry leaves – 5
  6. Dry red chillies - 2
  7. Cilantro -  2 cups, packed


Method


  1. Best way to cut chayote is along the folds or ridges, and carve out the seed from inside. Lightly peel the skin, and chop it into cubes.
  2. Heat some oil in a pan, add urad, cumin, mustard, and dry red chillies. Once the mustard seeds splutter, add the curry leaves.
  3. After around 10 seconds, add chayote cubes. Mix this up, and let it cook (closed) for about 15-20 mins on medium heat till soft.
  4. Grind cilantro, and green chillies together with little water. Add this to the chayote, and it is cook for additional 10 mins.
  5. Enjoy with chapathis!






 













Monday, March 11, 2013

Chana (Garbanzo/Chickpeas) masala








Ingredients
 


1.            Garbanzo beans- 2 cups dry. Soak for 5-6 hours. Do not need to soak if using canned.
2.            Onion- 1 big, sliced
3.            Green chillies – 3 (though the pic below shows 4 I used only 3, use 2 if you want it less spicy)
4.            Ginger – 2 inch
5.            Garlic – 4-5 cloves
6.            Cilantro- 1 cup packed
7.            Tomatoes –3 ( 1- cubed, 2-pureed)
8.            Garam masala – 1.5 tbspn, Coriander powder – 1 tbspn, Chicken masala - 1 tspn, Kashmiri chilli -1 tspn, turmeric - 1/4 tspn
9.            Ghee – 1 tspn


Method

  1. If you are using dry chick peas, and it has been soaked for 5-6 hrs. Then cook it in a pressure cooker for 3-4 whistles (do not open yet, let is cool off). Keep aside.
  2. Coarsely chop the ginger, and garlic, and grind it.
  3. Heat oil in a pan, add the ground ginger-garlic paste. Once the raw smell is gone, add the sliced onion. Add salt, and cook it till it is translucent, and slightly brown.
  4. Add the masalas listed above in ingredients list 8, (if you think it is too dry after mixing, add 1-2 tbspn of oil), also add ghee. Once the raw smell of the masalas is gone, around 5 mins, add the chopped tomato, and cilantro. Mix it all in.  
  5. Then add the tomato pureed to this mixture. Let this cook for another 5-6 minutes.
  6. Add this masala mixture to the canned or cooked ganbanzo beans!
  7. Mix it well, and let this cook for 10-15 mins at medium flame.
  8. If the curry turns out to be too spicy, add ½ to 1 cup coconut milk.
  9. Enjoy with chapathis or rice!