Sweet & Sour Pumpkin / Khatta Meetha Kaddu: North Indian Cuisine

Kaddu

Serves: Four  (4) Persons

♦ Ingredients

  • Pumpkin / Kaddu : 500 gm (De-seed, peel and cut it into 2 inches cubes )
  • Onion / Piyaaz: 2 No’s (Medium size cut lengthwise / julienne)
  • Fenugreek seeds / Methi dana:  ½ teaspoon or a bit less (very essential ingredient for this dish)
  • Asafoetida / Hing: 1 pinch
  • Fennel flower / Kalonji: ½ teaspoon (optional)
  • Red Chilli (Dry) / Lal sabut mirch: 1 or 2 no’s
  • Green Chillies / Hari mirch: As per taste (cut vertically)
  • Kashmiri chilli powder: 1 ½ teaspoon
  • Turmeric / Haldi powder: ½ teaspoon
  • Coriander / Dhania powder: ½ tablespoon
  • Ginger / Adrak: 1 inch cut in strips
  • Sugar / Cheeni: 2 tablespoons
  • Salt: As per taste
  • Water: 50 ml
  • Oil: 3 tablespoons.

♦ For sweet and sour flavour & garnishing

  • Lemon / Nimbu juice: 1 ½ tablespoon or Lemon Salt a pinch
  • Fresh Coriander leaves: very coarsely chopped

♦ Preparation:

  • In a pan heat oil on medium flame and once heated add onion and let it become translucent, now add fenugreek seed, asafoedita, fennel flower, green chilli, red chilli, chilli powder and sauté for 1 minute.
  • Now add turmeric powder, coriander powder, ginger sauté, salt for another 30 seconds.
  • Add pumpkin now and mix well and add water and cover the pan, let the steam get circulated in the pan for at least 10 to 13 minutes (or till the pumpkin becomes soft and 90% cooked)
  • Now add sugar and sauté. It will be caramelized.
  • Add lemon juice or lemon salt and gently mix it.
  • Switch off the flame and garnish it with coriander leaf.

Serve with Puri, Paratha, Bread or as a side dish with Rice.

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Baba Ganouj – Eggplant / Baigan prepared with Pomegranate Molasses Dip (Middle Eastern Cusine)

baba ganouj

Serves: Two  (2) Persons

♦ Ingredients

  • Egg Plants / Baigan: 3 no’s (cut vertically from centre in two halves)
  • Garlic: 4 to 5 cloves (very fine chopped)
  • Lemon juice: 2 tablespoon
  • Pomegranate Molasses – 2 tablespoon
  • Salt: As per taste
  • Olive Oil: 4 tablespoons (in parts to be used)

♦ For garnishing

  • Coriander / Parsley leaf: 1/3 cup (fine chopped)
  • Pomegranate Seeds

♦ Preparation:

  • Poke hole with a fork in eggplants / baigan, rub olive oil on the skin and roast it on a gas on medium flame placing it on the skin on flame
  • Once tender and soft, scoop the entire flesh from eggplant and keep it on a sieve for water to drain.
  • Mash eggplant flesh with a fork until it is smooth.
  • Add lemon juice, pomegranate molasses, salt, garlic and olive oil. Mix it well
  • While serving pour some olive oil and garnish it. 

Serve with Khaboos, Lebanese Bread or Paratha. You can make a roll also.

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Spinach Groat Salad / Palak Dalia ka Salad

oat berry groat salad

Serves: Two  (2) Persons

♦ Ingredients

  • Spinach / Palak: 150 grams (satisfactory cleaned & fine chopped)
  • Thick Groats / Dalia: 1cup (washed)
  • Corn seeds boiled: 1 cup (can be replaced by another vegetable or seeds of your choice)
  • Spring Onion: 2 sprigs (finely chopped with stems)
  • Salt: As per taste
  • Black Pepper: ½ teaspoon (powder)
  • Paprika: 1teaspoon (powder)
  • Green Chilli: 1 no’s (fine chop or you can use chilli paste)
  • Mixed spices / Garam masala: ½ teaspoon
  • Cumin / Zeera: ½ teaspoon (powder)
  • Tomato paste: 1 tablespoon
  • Tomato: 1 no’s (finely chopped)
  • Olive Oil: 3 tablespoons
  • Lemon juice: ¼ cup
  • Pomegranate molasses: 2 Tablespoons

♦ Preparation:

  • On medium heat take water in a pan and boil it. Add groats and let them boil, you can say until satisfactory boiled. Please note it takes time to boil them, it depends upon the thickness of the grain.
  • Once the groats are boiled transfer them into a strainer and drain the water. Once the boiled water is entirely drained out, pour cold or room temperature water on the groats till they settle and are cool.
  • Transfer the groats from the strainer to a bowl and add chopped spinach, corn seeds, spring onion, salt, black pepper, paprika, chilli, mixed spices, tomato, and cumin. Mix it well.
  • Add the tomato paste, olive oil, pomegranate molasses until all are well coated and mixed.
  • If you want you can again pour olive oil on top before serving.

 Serve it.

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Lentil Soup / Daal Ka Soup: Arabic Cuisine (Appetizer)

lentil soup

Serving: Four (4) persons

Ingredients:

  • Red Lentils / Lal Masoor Daal: 2 cup (well cleaned and soaked for 20 minutes)
  • Broken Rice: ¼ cup (can use Egyptian Rice)
  • Red onion: 1 no (finely chopped in cubes)
  • Garlic Cloves / Lahsan: 3 no’s (julianne cut)
  • Black pepper / Kali Mirch powder: ½ teaspoon
  • Cumin / Zeera: 2 ½ teaspoons (powder)
  • Turmeric / Haldi: ½ teaspoon
  • Oil: 3 tablespoons
  • Salt: As per taste
  • Water: 5 to 6 cups

For Garnish:

  • Coriander leaf / Dhania patta: ¼ cup (fine chopped for garnishing)
  • Food Cream: As per requirement

Preparation:

  • Take a pan and on medium heat fry onion and garlic in the oil until onion are pink or translucent
  • Now add rice and lentil and mix for few seconds and add cumin, black pepper, turmeric, salt and mix.
  • Add water and increase the flame of the gas to high until the water boils. Once water is boiled reduce the heat to medium preferable simmer for 30 minutes or till the lentils are cooked. Keep stirring in between.
  • Once the lentils are cooked remove it from the flame, if you have hand blender you can blend the entire mixture now or if you using Mixer let it cool and come to room temperature and then blend it.
  • Once you blend it will become smooth in consistency and if you find it bit thick you can add water.
  • Now again heat it for 2 to 3 minutes before you serve.
  • Garnish it with coriander leaf and food cream if you want.

Serve with sliced lemon and pita bread or without pita bread. While serving place Olive Oil and Arabic Spice Masala on the table, if anyone wants can drizzle and sprinkle respectively.

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Spinach with Cottage Cheese / Palak Paneer: Cooked in North Indian Method

Palak Paneeer

Serves: Two  (2) Persons

♦ Ingredients

  • Spinach / Palak: 250 grams (satisfactorily cleaned)
  • Fresh Cottage Cheese / Paneer: 300 gm (Cut into cubes)
  • Red onion: 1 large (Julienne cut)
  • Garlic: 4 to 5 cloves (Very fine chopped)
  • Cloves / Lavang: 5 no’s
  • Black pepper (whole) / Kali mirch: 5 no’s
  • Cinnamon bark / Dalchini: 1 inch or powder 1 teaspoon
  • Bay leaves / Tejpat patta: 2 no’s (broken from middle)
  • Green cardamom / Choti elaichi: 3 no’s
  • Cumin seeds / Zeera: 1 ½ teaspoon
  • Coriander leaves: ½ cup (Finely chopped or paste)
  • Chili powder: 1 teaspoon (Kashmiri chili powder)
  • Green chili: 2 no’s (fine chop)
  • Curd: 4 tablespoons
  • Coriander powder: 2 teaspoons
  • Salt: As per taste
  • Oil or clarified butter/ghee: 3  tablespoons
  • Ginger: ½ inch (Julienne cut for garnishing)
  • All purpose cream: 1 teaspoon

Suggestion: Do not add tomato in any form.

♦ Preparation:

  • Keep two pans ready one with hot water and other with cold water.
  • Clean & wash spinach and then dip them in hot water for 2 to 3 minutes and then immediately transfer them in ice cold water for 2 to 3 minutes. This keeps spinach green even after cooking.
  • Blend the spinach into a fine paste.
  • Take a pan on low medium flame add clarified butter and add cumin seeds.
  • Once cumin seed splutters add, garlic and sauté it for 2 to 3 minutes so that garlic becomes golden in colour.
  • Add cloves, black pepper, bay leaves, green cardamom and sauté gently for 2 minutes.
  • Time to add onion and sauté it until they turn translucent or pink in colour.
  • Now add chilli powder, coriander powder, green chilli, salt and mix well
  • Add curd and gently whisk it in the pan along with the mixture for 2 minutes. This gives a very beautiful colour to the entire dish.
  • Now add spinach to the entire mixture and gently stir and let it boil. In case you find the paste of spinach bit thick add little water and let it boil.
  • After 1st boil add coriander paste or chopped coriander and gently stir for 2 minutes.
  • Now it is time to add cottage cheese. (Cottage cheese can be added directly or some prefer them to be fried and then added. If you love to have it fried than fry cottage cheese cubes in oil or ghee and keep aside. This process you have to carry out before you blend the spinach – 1st Step)
  • After cottage cheese is added gently stir it alongwith the spinach for 3 to 4 minutes
  • Switch off the gas flame and garnish with ginger and drizzle cream on top.

Serve with chapatis or steam rice.

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Pomegranate Molasses (Home Made): Drink it / Roast with it / Mix it with meat / Salad dressing / Add to your dessert

pomegranate molasses

Pomegranate molasses is a syrup of boiled pomegranate juice, most commonly used in Middle Eastern Cuisine. It has an intense sweet-and-sour flavour. Pomegranate molasses can be used in as many ways you can imagine. 

 

Ingredients

  • 4 cups pure 100% pomegranate juice (bottled or fresh)
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Pour pomegranate juice, sugar, and lemon juice into a small saucepan. 

Preparation:

  • Heat up over medium gas until the sauce begins to simmer lightly.
  • Add Sugar and stir to dissolve sugar.
  • Allow the liquid to simmer very lightly for 60-80 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, till the liquid reduces by 75% to about 1 cup of molasses. 
  • The liquid is ready when it has a light syrupy consistency and coats the back of a spoon.
  • Don’t let it thicken too much, or it will harden when it cools.
  • Remove from heat. The syrup will continue to thicken as it cools. (If you’re unsure about the consistency, measure the reduce liquid– it should be between 1 and 1 1/4 cups of syrup. If it’s a lot more liquid than that, continue reducing)
  • After the syrup cools completely, store it in an airtight jar or container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

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Koftas cooked in Tahini Sauce: Non Veg & Veg Recipe

kofta with tahini

Serves: Two  (2) Persons

♦ Ingredients

  • Minced meat: 300 gm
  • Eggs: 1 no (beaten and mixed with minced meat)
  • Red onion: 1 large
  • Tomato: 3 no’s (fine chopped)
  • Garlic: 6 cloves ( 4 will be used while blending and 2 will be finely chopped and will be used while preparing tahini sauce)
  • Coriander leaves: ½ cup
  • All Spices: Arabic Spice or Garam Masala (I used Arabic Spice)
  • Black pepper powder: ¼ teaspoon
  • Salt: As per taste
  • Sesame seed paste (Tahini): 3/4th cup
  • Lemon juice: ½ cup
  • Water: 3/4 th cup
  • Oil: 2 tablespoons

♦ For Vegetarian: You can replace minced meat with grated Water gourd / Lauki / Ghia (to bind them you will require gram flour/besan)

 ♦ Preparation:

  • In a blender place onion, garlic and coriander leaves and pulse grind it. Do not make a fine paste. Simultaneously in a pan pour water and make it lukewarm.
  • Take a pan to add minced meat mixed with beaten egg, add all spices, salt as per taste, black pepper and blended paste. Mix well with hand to give it a round shape or kofta shape. For Veg Kofta replace meat with water gourd.
  • Take a pan to grease it with oil dip your hand in a lukewarm water without wiping the water from your hand hold the koftas and place them in the pan
  • Once the koftas are placed put three to four tablespoons of water and then put chopped tomatoes on top of kofta.
  • Here we have an option of Air Fryer or Gas Stove. If you using Air fryer cover the pan with aluminium foil and cook at 150C for 35 minutes or until well cooked as the heat differs from one brand to another brand of air fryer) If using water gourd the time will be reduced to 25 minutes
  • If using pan the process of covering remain the same, put the gas on a low medium flame and cook for 40 minutes or until well cooked. For water gourd, it will be for 25 minutes or until well cooked
  • While the koftas are being cooked, prepare tahini sauce in a mixer, by mixing water with sesame seed. It will become like a paste.
  • Add lemon to the tahini paste, salt as per taste and garlic and again mix it.
  • By now the koftas will be ready, shrunk in size, with a lot of water around it released. Reduce the water level by removing it in a bowl.
  • Add tahini sauce on the kofta and put it back in the air fryer or gas stove for 10 minutes the temperature remains the same and for gas the flame remains the same.
  • Once done i.e. after 10 minutes place the kofta in a serving bowl, sprinkle the water that was kept aside in a bowl.
  • Garnish it with coriander leaf if you want you can use pomegranate seeds or olives depends upon you.

Serve it with Chapati, Paratha or Pita Bread

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