Healthy Wholewheat multiseed and multi millet Roti

This recipe is a result of many experiments over months. I needed a nutritious roti to manage my hunger pangs and this recipe helped me quite a lot.

I happened to find a packet of multi – millet aata and picked it up. The recipe started taking shape and I gradually incorporated new ingredients . It worked and I found this to be a feelgood recipe. The crunch comes ftom the seeds and softness from curd.

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Wellness Potion (Durga Puja and Navratri Special)

It has been long since I posted my last recipe. This one is very close to my heart and has had enough trials and tribulations in the past.

The name has been coined by me and this has been my tried and tested friend for over 30 years. I wouldn’t be exaggerating if I mention that I never use any synthetic cleansers on my face. The much needed glow before any occasion comes from this wellness potion.

This is vegetarian and can be had steaming hot if you really want to shed the extra kilos along with the glow on your skin or chilled if you are just looking for the glow.

I make it in batches which serves a family of four for two days. The number of glasses of water added depends on how many people needs to served and over how many days. Though it is always advisable to cook and have it fresh every day but because of some constraints if it is not possible, it can be frozen in separate containers and can be had everyday. To get maximum results start having fifteen days before the occasion.

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Mochar Ghonto(Banana flower cooked with aromatic spices)

This dish is very dear to Bengalis and though it takes long to remove the stamens and stigma and chop them fine,we still manage to go through all hurdles to endure the end result which is worth the wait. Thanks to the home delivery of vegetables, we now get it peeled and just ready to be chopped. This is eaten with plain rice and is little sweet which is not exactly new to Bengali cuisine. The sweetness balances the tartness of the banana flower.

Ingredients

  1. 1 banana flower (peeled, stamens removed and chopped)
  2. 4 tbsps of freshly grated coconut
  3. 1 cinnamon stick, 4 cloves, 2 green cardamoms, 2 bay leaves, 1 dried red chilli
  4. A pinch of turmeric powder
  5. 2 tbsps of ghee or clarified butter
  6. 1 small tablet sized tamarind ball (seedless)
  7. 1 tbsp of freshly squeezed ginger juice
  8. 2 tbsps of fresh cream
  9. Garam masala powder
  10. Slit green chillies
  11. Salt and sugar to taste.

Procedure

  1. Wash and drain the chopped banana flowers and transfer it to a pressure cooker with tamarind , salt and turmeric powder and half a cup of water.
  2. After one whistle, let it cool down and drain the water and slightly mash the flowers with a fork.
  3. Add ghee to a wok and put all the whole spices and once they start to crackle, add the flowers.
  4. Saute and keep adding all the ingredients except grated coconut.
  5. Stir fry on medium flame until the aroma of ghee, fresh cream and spices fill your kitchen.
  6. Once it is dry, transfer it to a plate and garnish it with grated coconut.
  7. It is ready to serve.
  8. Cooking of this recipe varies from kitchen to kitchen. Many add potatoes but I personally do not like potatoes in this dish.

French Beans with Grated Coconut

This recipe is one of the most satisfying and good looking vegetable dish.Cooking this recipe is very easy but cutting it takes time. When your table has all the colours and you need to add a green beauty then this comes to your rescue. To me it is very satisfying when combined with roti or rice.

Ingredients

  1. French beans (tender) – 250 gms
  2. Freshly grated coconut – 2 tbsps
  3. Black mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
  4. Hing or asafoetida – a pinch
  5. Red chilli powder – 1/4 tsp
  6. Turmeric powder – 1/8 tsp
  7. Salt to taste
  8. 1 tbsp oil.

Procedure

  • Wash the beans and remove the side strings from beans if they are a bit mature and then cut.
  • If they are very tender they don’t have strings. Just cut them into half an inch pieces.
  • Add oil to the pan and add mustard seeds and hing. Let them crackle and then add the beans. Lower the flame.
  • Add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, salt and cover and cook on low heat for ten minutes. Do not add water.
  • Remove the lid and stir. At this stage, add grated coconut and stir fry.
  • Your dish is ready to serve.

Chicken Biryani

This is my easy biryani recipe and has always been a favourite with my guests. I marinate the chicken with all the required ingredients and leave it overnight in the fridge but it works well even if it is marinated for an hour. The more the merrier though.If I have too many items to cook, then I make the rice beforehand and keep. But, freshly cooked one is always the best. I use either chicken thighs or chicken legs to ensure uniformity in cooking time.

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Potato and Cauliflower fry

This is a versatile recipe because I can combine this with rice and dal, make nice sandwiches, use this as a samosa filling (more of a bengali winter samosa with potato, cauliflower and green peas), have with parathas and of course with kurmura or puffed rice as well. This comes to my rescue even when I come back from weekend getaways and after having heavy meals for two days I look forward to this light and aromatic vegetable dish. Aroma comes in the form of roasted cumin powder, slit green chillies, red chilli flakes and coriander leaves – all of which is added right at the end.

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Wholesome Soup(One Pot Meal)

This recipe is my favourite because within no time, I can feed an army of people and without much preparation. When people look for a comforting recipe to cook on a cold winter night I would definitely recommend this recipe. You do not need to have fixed ingredients for this recipe. Little imagination, your family’s likings, availability of ingredients all contribute to this healthy one pot meal.

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My Macher Jhol (Bengali Fish Curry)

The word curry or jhol implies slow cooking with spices wherein each spice has a role to play. Few of them impart their flavour, some render their sweetness and some give the required consistency to the curries. For bengalis, macher jhol and rice combo is comfort food. In earlier times, fish was deep fried before putting into jhol which made it tastier. Nowadays keeping health factor in mind, we shallow fry or at times even grill before putting into the already simmering curry. We add vegetables as per season and availability but believe me there nothing can stop us from cooking macher jhol. If our pantry runs barren we cook it with only potatoes and dal kisses(bori). Today I have shared the recipe of aloo(potatoes), phoolkopi(cauliflower) and bori(dal kisses) jhol cooked the traditional way. Each and every household have their own recipe.

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Crispy Fried Chicken Thighs

This is an all time favourite for all age groups and believe me, your work gets much easier if you have the ready to fry chicken thighs sitting in your freezer. At times, for health reasons I do air fry or put it under the grill or even bake it. This versatility makes it a must for large gatherings. You can make it with chicken drumsticks but, I prefer thighs because they have much more meat in it.

Servings are upto you because people do go for two at times. So six chicken thighs is what I am targeting at.

Ingredients

  1. 6 chicken thighs deskinned
  2. For the marination : 2tbsps each of ginger garlic paste, light soy sauce, sweet chilli sauce, tomato sauce, hot pepper sauce, rice vinegar.
  3. For the coating : 2 eggs beaten with a pinch of salt, 100 gms of refined flour with a pinch of salt, 200 gms of bread crumbs mixed with 1 tsp each of onion powder, garlic powder, red chilli powder, mixed herbs, a pinch of salt and 50 gms of grated parmesan.
  4. Oil to deep fry.

Procedure

  1. Wash and clean the chicken thighs. Make two diagonal slits on both the sides of thighs.
  2. Take a bowl and mix all the ingredients for marinade.
  3. Coat the chicken thighs with the marinade and let it rest for at least half an hour at room temperature.
  4. Now, take flour in a plate, add a pinch of salt and keep aside.
  5. Beat eggs in a bowl with a pinch of salt and keep aside.
  6. Spread breadcrumbs on a plate and add all the ingredients and mix well.
  7. Now, we need to keep one of our hands dry and the other will do the messy work or like me, you can use a fork for wet ingredients and both your hands to coat the dry ones.
  8. Take the thighs one by one and first coat in the flour, then coat it with the egg and then onto the final plate of breadcrumbs.
  9. Coat it very well using your hands.
  10. Now keep it an air tight box and freeze it or fry it.
  11. To deep fry, take a deep wok and add oil to it. The oil should not be very hot or else the outside coating burns leaving the inside uncooked.
  12. When the oil is medium hot, add the thighs one by one and leave it on low heat for 10 minutes.
  13. After which flip the thighs and cook for 5 to 8 minutes on low heat.
  14. When the outside coating turns brown, take it out an a kitchen towel.
  15. Serve it hot.
  16. To grill or bake, spray oil on both the sides of the thighs and put it under the preheated oven at 200 degrees Celsius for 10 to 15 minutes. The timing varies according to the size of the oven.
  17. I make a batch of minimum 12 thighs or legs and store it in the freezer. So, the days I do not feel like going to the kitchen, I just take the box out of the freezer two hours earlier and pop it in the oven and make a nice crunchy and fruity fresh salad with lots of seeds and nuts.

Hostel food (Snacks) 1

One of the major problems that all children face when they stay away from home is food. Some ready to eat Indian snacks we can pack for them will help them to have something homemade. In this series, I begin with a savoury recipe made with semolina(suji or rawa) namely upma which is savoury. You have to add boiling hot water or milk and cover for 5-8 minutes to eat it. It is nutritious and filling but it turns out to be a poorer cousin when compared to the freshly made ones.

Serves

2 tbsps per serving per person

UPMA

Ingredients

  1. 250 gms of Semolina or suji or rawa
  2. 2 grated ripe and juicy tomatoes
  3. A handful of peanuts
  4. 2 tbsps of thinly sliced curry leaves
  5. 1 tsp of black mustard seeds,white urad dal and tur dal
  6. 1/2 tsp chilli powder
  7. 1/4 tsp of hing(asafoetida)
  8. 3 tbsps of refined oil
  9. Salt to taste.

Procedure

  1. Take a wok, put 1 tsp oil in it and heat it.
  2. Once hot, add mustard, hing, urad dal, tur dal, curry leaves and fry till there is no water left in the curry leaves. After which transfer it to a bowl.
  3. Take the same wok and add two tsps of oil. Heat it and then add the grated tomatoes. Fry well till no water content remains. Transfer it to the same bowl.
  4. Put the wok on the fire and on low flame roast the peanuts till brown on the outside and crisp from inside. Keep it aside.
  5. Now add the remaining oil to the wok and heat it.
  6. Add semolina and on low flame fry it well till you get a nutty aroma and the grains turn wheatish in colour. Keep stirring continuously or else it will burn.
  7. Once done add chilli powder, salt to taste and mix well. Turn off the flame.
  8. Add the peanuts, tomatoes, fried spices and mix well.
  9. Let it cool completely before you transfer in a jar.
  10. To prepare the snack, take two tbsps of the ready upma mix in a small bowl.
  11. Add boiling water or boiling milk mixed with water and add to the bowl just till the level of upma mix in the bowl.
  12. Cover it with a tight fitting lid and leave it for five to eight minutes.
  13. Remove the lid and fluff it with a fork. It is ready to eat.
  14. You can fry fresh coconut, green chillies and coriander leaves and fry it till there is no water content left and add to the mix.
  15. This recipe tastes so fresh whenever had and gives a homely feel to our children.
  16. Older children carry electric kettles and can boil water or milk but it us not safe for little ones.