Vegetable Pulao

Vegetable Pulao- Serves 3This is one of my favorite to go recipes to make when I have kids coming over for dinner. This pulao is made with lots of veggies, is simple to prepare and is always relished by all! So last week I invited my friend and her kids over for dinner. Her husband was away on a business trip and since our kids were having a playdate, I asked her to join us for dinner too! My friend loves Indian food but this was the first time her kids (ages 6 and 4) were trying it out. I kept things simple by preparing chicken curry, eggplant fry, greek salad, chappati (Indian bread), and this pulao. The pulao is . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Vegetarian Biryani- “Hyderabadi Style”

Vegetarian Biryani- Serves 6 One of my favorite Indian dishes is Biryani. So much so that I have collected so many different recipes and variations of it from family, friends and cook books. This particular one is called “Hyderabadi Biryani” and is made with lots of fresh cilantro, fresh mint, onions, tomatoes and yogurt. I often make the chicken version of this and over this past weekend I made a vegetarian version using carrots, french beans, green peas, and potatoes. Best of all, it’s a one pot dish that is a hit with all! Biryani is a rice-based dish layered with meat and/or vegetables. The rice and meat are cooked separately, and then layered and baked together or cooked on . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Mushroom Curry

Mushroom Curry- Serves 4 This is one of my favorite vegetarian curries to make. The meaty mushrooms soak up all the wonderful flavors of this coconut based curry. Made with caramelized onions, whole red Kashmiri chillies, grated coconut, fresh cilantro, garlic and some thick coconut milk that rounds up all the flavors. Don’t be alarmed by the deep red color of this dish. It is not spicy. The Kashmiri chillies lends the curry its gorgeous color. Serve hot with rice and a salad on the side. Enjoy! Ingredients: 8 oz white mushrooms, sliced into halves or quarters 1 onion, chopped- half for grinding and half for browning 5 whole Whole Red Dried Kashmiri Chillies – deseed completely 2 tablespoons . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Carrot Halwa- “Gajar Ka Halwa”

My little one all dolled up and excited for the festivities! Happy Diwali! Wishing all my readers a very Happy Diwali and a Prosperous New Year! “Diwali” is the Hindu festival of lights. This year it will be celebrated on Sunday, November 3rd. The festival symbolizes the victory of good over evil, light over dark and truth over falsehood. We celebrate by lighting “Diyas”, preparing delicious food and Indian desserts and by making sure the house is spic and span.”Laxmi” the Goddess of wealth is worshipped. It is believed that “Laxmi” the Hindu Goddess of wealth and prosperity comes to every home on “Diwali” night. This year, I decided to prepare Carrot or “Gajar Ka Halwa”. Carrots are grated and . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Indian Cottage Cheese With Peas-“Matar Paneer”

“Matar Paneer” is a popular North Indian dish. Cubes of soft paneer are cooked with peas and tomatoes. I also love the versatility of this gravy which can be used to make potatoes with peas too! This is one of my favorite and easy recipes I turn to, when in a hurry to cook something fast and delicious! The tomatoes are cooked with ginger and green chillies, then your vegetable, either paneer or potatoes are added in along with some Indian spices. Unbelievably quick and yummy! I generally avoid using store bought paneer as I find it expensive and the texture tends to be tough unless I am in a tearing hurry. Making paneer at home is not only more . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Potatoes With Five Spices “Paanch Phoron”

Potatoes With Five Spices- “Paanch- Phoran”- serves 6 These potatoes are cooked using five whole spices like fennel, yellow mustard seeds, black mustard seeds, cumin seeds and onion seeds with a dash of red chilly powder. “Paanch- Phoran ” literally means five spices and is very famous in Eastern India. I typically use this mixture to prepare pickles or a simple potato preparation like this one. These potatoes are make a great side dish.While cooking your kitchen is bound to smell great because of all the fragrant spices. I typically like to add extra fennel since I love the flavor! I hope you enjoy this. Ingredients: 2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cubed ( I used Yukon Gold) 3/4 teaspoon fennel . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Eggplant Masala- “Sindhi Style”

Eggplant Masala- Serves 4 Sunday is our day for comfort food in my home. More often than not, I cook my family’s favorite lentil, rice and “Gobi-kheema” (minced cauliflower). Since I am so crazy about eggplant (!), I decided to use it in place of the cauliflower. Chop finely and cook with onions, tomatoes and a couple of Indian spices. It’s a no fuss dish that few can resist. Ingredients: 1 meduim sized eggplant, chopped into small pieces 2 small onions, chopped fine 2 tomatoes, chopped fine 1 teaspoon of tomato paste (optional, gives a nice color) 2 to 3 “Thai hot” green chillies – finely chopped 1 tablespoon, finely chopped fresh ginger 3 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro, plus 1 . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Chickpeas- “Rawalpindi Channa”

One of my close friends was over for dinner last night with her fiancé. I wanted to cook something special yet homely and welcoming. Chickpeas is a high protein, delicious vegetarian dish that rounds up any menu well. I cooked some chicken makhanwala, matar paneer (recipe to be posted soon), boondi raita, and chickpeas. Served it hot with roomali roti and white basmati rice. The preparation for the dish begins with soaking the dried beans overnight in water. Then, I cook it in the pressure cooker using a few whole spices like black cardamom, bay leaf , cloves, cinnamon stick, tea bags and some finely chopped fresh ginger. The tea bags give the chickpeas a rich brown color, which . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Cluster Beans With Potatoes”Guwar And Aloo Bhaji”

Cluster Beans With Potatoes- Serves 3 Cluster bean is a type of green bean that is grown abundantly in India. It is widely consumed amongst people living in Western India. It is flatter than the regular french beans and has a slightly bitter taste. So when I cook this, I like to add onions and potatoes both of which lend a natural sweetness to the dish. I often add these beans to my lentils and curries too. It is one of the healthiest vegetables to eat as it is very low in calories. Another interesting fact is guar gum is derived from cluster beans. Guar gum is a food additive used as a thickening agent. Ingredients: 7 ounces cluster beans, . . . CLICK TO READ MORE

Deep-Fried Eggplant Slices-“Baingan Kachri”

Fried Eggplant Slices, makes 8 slices – Recipe adapted from Madhur Jaffrey’s World Vegetarian Fried eggplant slices also known as “Baingan Kachri” is a popular dish in most Indian homes. I cook this often since my daughter relishes it and I am thrilled as she gets her healthy dose of veggies. The eggplant is thickly sliced, then thrown in some salted water. It is then patted dry with a kitchen towel and sprinkled with spices like coriander, cumin, red chilly powder, salt and pepper. The eggplant absorbs all the spices and is then coated with whole wheat flour and deep fried. Deep frying the eggplant locks in all the juices of the eggplant and tastes soft and sweet. We enjoy . . . CLICK TO READ MORE