Thursday, January 20, 2011

Paneer Methi Matar Malai and Til Wale Baingan

I have been in an extremely creative mode with cooking lately and these two dishes were what I conjured up for dinner in 30 mins. The recipe for Paneer Methi Matar Malai was based on numerous recipes online that I modified to be healthier and the baingan was a healthier version of Begun Bhaja with sesame. Both were unique in flavors and yummy with the rotis.

Recipe for Paneer Methi Matar Malai:I read several recipes for methi matar malai which called for cream. I just used low fat milk instead and some flour paste for thickening and it works just as well.

  1. Oil - 1 tsp
  2. Cinnamon - 1 inch piece
  3. Cloves - 2
  4. Cardamom - 2
  5. Green chilli - 1, finely chopped
  6. White onion - 1, finely chopped
  7. Ginger paste - 1 tsp
  8. Garlic paste - 1 tsp
  9. Frozen methi - 1 block/cube
  10. Frozen peas - 1 cup
  11. Milk - 1 cup
  12. Red chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
  13. Jeera dhania powder - 1/2 tsp
  14. Garam masala - 1 pinch
  15. Sugar - 1/2 tsp
  16. Salt
  17. Paneer - 10 small cubes, deep fried, pan friend or fresh
  18. All purpose flour or maida - 1 tsp, mix in water to make a paste
  1. Heat oil in a skillet and add the cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and green chilli. Roast until you can smell the spices.
  2. Add finely chopped onions and saute until well done and slightly browned.
  3. Add ginger paste and garlic paste and saute until the paste is well mixed into the onions and well cooked.
  4. Thaw the methi, microwave for 2 minutes and then add to the onions.
  5. Mix and cook for 10 minutes until the methi is thoroughly cooked.
  6. Add the salt, red chilli powder, jeera dhania powder, garam masala and mix well.
  7. Add the peas, milk, sugar and flour paste and bring the liquid to a boil.
  8. Add paneer at the end and heat till it softens.

Recipe for Til Wale Baingan: Brinjals usually absorb a lot of oil. The key to this recipe is to use very little oil and cook it in a non stick skillet with a lid so that the brinjals are well done.

  1. Brinjals - 6/7 small ones, cut into discs
  2. Red chilli powder - 1 tsp
  3. Turmeric - 1 1/2 tsp (yes thats a lot but it adds to the flavor)
  4. Ginger paste - 1 tsp
  5. Garlic paste - 1 tsp
  6. Til/Sesame seeds - 1/2 cup
  7. Salt
  8. Corriander - handful, finely chopped
  9. Lemon juice - 1 tsp
  10. Oil - 1 tsp
  11. Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
  12. Jeera - 1 tsp
  13. Hing - 1/4 tsp
  1. Heat the oil in a skillet and add mustard seeds, jeera and hing.
  2. Once the mustard seeds sputter, add the brinjal slices, salt, red chilli powder, turmeric, ginger paste, garlic paste and mix them all together.
  3. Cook on high flame for 5 minutes until the brinjal start roasting and then top with a lid. Allow the brinjals to cook well and become soft.
  4. Toast the sesame seeds in a pan until golden brown.
  5. Once the brinjals cook thoroughly, add the sesame seeds, corriander and lemon juice and mix together.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

2011 - The first thing I tasted, a very chocolaty brownie and a TamBhram soul food

Happy new year all! What was the first thing you ate/drank in 2011. I started mine with champagne at 12:00AM and a very well done mocha in the morning. We had an excellent brunch at Hobbee's with my hubby gobbling down a poached egg on english muffin with country hash browns and me devouring the usual scrambled tofu and rye toast. A very satisfactory start to the year indeed.

I also made these yummy chocolate brownies (baked in a muffin pan to get the crisp edge on each one) from this recipe. The only modification I made was to reduce the sugar a little. We had this for dessert with vanilla ice cream and it was a chocolate lover's delight.

Next up is a dish which is tam-bhram soul food. In combination with rasam and rice, this makes a protein rich healthy meal if made the low fat way.

  1. Chana dal - 1 cup
  2. Toor dal - 1 cup
  3. Dried red chillies - 7/8
  4. Hing - 1/4 tsp
  5. Haldi - 1/4 tsp
  6. Beans - 2 cups, chopped into 1/2 inch size
  7. Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
  8. Oil - 1 tsp
  9. Curry leaves - 5/6
  10. Salt
  11. Lemon juice - 1 tsp
Directions -
  1. Soak the chana dal and toor dal for 2-3 hours
  2. Grind the chana dal and toor dal with half the red chillies, salt and hing with very little water.
  3. Cook the beans and the ground dal mixture for 2 whistles in the cooker. The dal mixture can also be steamed in idly pans or cooked in the microwave for a few minutes.
  4. Heat oil and add mustard seeds, haldi, curry leaves. One the mustard seeds break open, add the beans.
  5. Break the cooked dal mixture into small pieces and add to the beans.
  6. Add salt and saute until the beans and dal come together and are well cooked.
  7. Top with lemon juice and enjoy with rasam and rice for an authentic Tamilian meal:)