Friday, 25 April 2014

Amlana- Cooling Tamarind Drink from Rajastan

I made this as a part of yesterday's Rajastani post.Amlana is a beverage from Rajastan made from Tamarind. When I saw this recipe in Tarla Dalal's Rajastani Cookbook, I could not help but notice the similarity between this one and the  Egyptian beverage- Tamr Hindi  that I posted a few months back.So many similarities in the cuisine.

Well, this one is really apt for the harsh climate of Rajastan and so made this soothing beverage to sip in our place as well,which is now turning into a really hot place, climate-wise.

I used:

Tamarind- a golf ball sized piece
Powdered sugar- to taste
Black salt/ kaala namak-1/4 teaspoon
Pepper powder- 1/4 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Water as needed
Ice cubes to serve
Mint leaves to garnish

Soak the tamarind in hot water for 15 minutes.Squeeze out as much extract as possible and filer.Repeat this till you are not able to make any more extract from the pulp.Filter and transfer into a vessel.

Add Black salt, sugar and pepper powder.Mix well. Check the taste.Add more water or salt/sugar / kaala namak.

Pour into tall glasses, top with ice and serve garnished with a little chopped mint leaves.

Make a huge batch ,chill and serve. Tastes best that way...

This drink goes to Cookbook Challenge of the month - April 2014...

Bon Appetit...

Phulaurah | Sikkim Buckwheat fritter

After a scrumptious Rajastani lunch, we are now going to visit Sikkim,also known as Shikim and Shu Khyim. This is the least populated state in India and the second smallest state after Goa.Sikkim is the only state to have Nepali ethnic majority.

Due to its location it has a varying climate and rich biodiversity and is one of the popular tourist spots in the country.

Like all other North Eastern states,the cuisine of Sikkim has the influence of the neighboring countries.In this case it is Nepal .Rice is the staple here.Noodle based soups, momos ,wontons are famous here along with the other dishes.20% of their diet is based on fermented foods and beverages.Meat and Dairy products are also consumed but its based on availability.

Wheat, finger millet, buckwheat,barley vegetables like potato,soy bean are cultivated here.

The recipe for the day is a simple snack made with buckwheat flour.

Behind the scene:

This is probably the second North Eastern state that I had no trouble getting recipes.[The first one was Manipur, remember].Though I found a number of doable recipes, I found this one to be different and was sure everyone would like to have it.

When I came back from China, I got back a pack of organic buckwheat and it was in the freezer waiting to be used.I had been saving it up for a nice recipe and hence used it up here.

As expected, everyone loved it. It is similar to our fritter but the taste of spring onions takes it to another level..

I used:
Adapted from hereEast Indian Recipes

Buckwheat flour- 1 cup
Spring onion greens-chopped from 5 stalks
Turmeric powder-a pinch
Baking powder- 1/8 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Oil to deep fry

Heat oil for deep frying. In a bowl take the buckwheat flour and add all the other ingredients.
Add water to make a paste the is neither too thin or thick. Drop spoon fulls of batter into the hot oil and deep fry till golden brown.Remove with a slotted spoon and serve.

I served it with mint chutney and tomato sauce.

Tomorrow, we will be tasting the Tamilnadu cuisine. Please put on comfortable clothing and walking shoes, or some foot wear that you are comfortable to walk around in.Don't ask me why,okay. I won't tell you just yet.

And also I am serving some healthy breakfast fro you guys. So make sure you come on an empty stomach.See you tomorrow morning....

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 39

Bon Appetit...

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Bikaniri Pappad Ke Parathe , Mooli ki Bhunji, Masale Masoor Dhal, Amlana - Rajastan

Rajastan , the Kingdom of the Kings, is the next place we are going to visit.This state houses parts of the Indus Valley civilization and has an ancient history.

The main geographic feature of Rajastan is the Thar Desert and the Aravalli Range. Most of the North western region of this state is dry and sandy.In spite of being a desert, this state is rich in fauna and flora.
This state is known for its palaces, forts, intricately carved temples,

The Rajastani cooking is largely influenced by the war like life style of the people and the availability of the ingredients. Due to the lack of green vegetables [as the place is mostly a desert],dried lentils and besan / gram flour dumplings of various sorts are used instead of vegetables. In these arid regions, the cooks use less water for cooking and replace it with ghee.

Dishes that could stay well for a long time and those that did not require heating were preferred.

Rajasthan,as I mentioned earlier, was a place of Rajas or Kings.The cuisine is very flavorful and is predominantly vegetarian. It is also known for the abundant use of milk, buttermilk,ghee and lentils.

Also check out the other Rajastani Thali that I posted some time back for another challenge.Featured here -
  • Kesar Malai Lassi
  • Gatte ki khadi with rice
  • Bajiri ki roti
  • Panchmel Ki Subji
  • Dhana wadi / Mung wadi - Coriander leaves curry
  • Matta / Boondhi Chaas

Yet another account of the memorable college trip...

At the Jantar - Mantar observatory,Jaipur with my friends

The Hawa Mahal, Jaipur

I would have loved to share the other pics as well but the post would go on for ever! So let us continue with the culinary tour of Rajastan.

Behind the scene:

I made this as a virtual treat to celebrate the b'day of the Queen of Melas and challenges...I heard that she used to make stuffed parathas on her b'day and hence decided to send across one virtually....

All the dishes in this thali were relished by the family.No one could believe that the curry was made with radish! The characteristic radish aroma was totally absent!

The papad paratha and mooli curry tasted good together and this is one of those combos that I will be making often.

Coming to the first recipe...

Bikaniri Pappad Ke Parathe

I used:

For the dough:

Whole wheat flour- 2 cup
Salt to taste

For filling:

Masala papad -2,grilled
Onion-1,finely chopped
Corinader leaves-2 teaspoons,finely chopped
Red chili powder- 1/2 teaspoon
Chaat masala-1/2 teaspoon

Take the wheat flour and salt in a bowl and add water little by little and knead to a smooth ,elastic dough. Cover and keep aside.

Crush the roasted / grilled pappad and add all the ingredients and mix well.Keep aside.

Pinch out a ball of dough and flatten it lightly. Place a teaspoon of the filling in the centre and bring the edges together and form a ball again.

Roll it out into a paratha and cook on a hot griddle till brown spots appear on both sides.

Serve with a side dish of your choice...

Masale Masoor Dal

I used:
Adapted from - Mharo Rajastan Recipes

Split red lentils-1/2 cup
Mustard seeds-1 teaspoon
Cumin seeds- 1/2 teaspoon
Red chilies,broken-2
Coriander powder- 1/2 teaspoon
Red chilies- 1 teaspoon
Turmeric powder- a pinch
Oil-1 teaspoon
Salt to taste

Pressure cook the dal with 2 cups of water. In a pan, heat oil and add mustard, cumin and red chilies.When the mustard pops add the dal along with the water used to cook it.

Put in salt,red chili powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and mix well.Add a little water if the dal is too thick and bring to a boil.Simmer for 5 minutes and remove from heat.

Serve garnished with coriander leaves

Mooli ki Bhunji - Stir fried Radish curry

I used:

White radish - 1. large,cut into small cubes
Cumin seeds- 1 teaspoon
Onion-1, thinly sliced
Garlic-2 pods, minced
Red chili powder- 1 teaspoon
Turmeric powder- a pinch
Coriander powder- 1/2 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Oil-1 teaspoon

Cook the chopped radish in water till soft. Drain and mash lightly.Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds.

Put in onion and garlic and saute till translucent. Add the coriander powder, chili powder, turmeric powder and cook for a few minutes. Add the radish and mix well.

Serve garnished with coriander leaves.

So, here is the recap of this meal.Also featured in this pic are the famous Meenakari and Blue pottery jewelry that are from this state.I still have the box that I got on my trip to Jaipur and it still looks good!

The Amlana recipe will be posted tomorrow...

Sending the Masale masoor dal to Avika who is hosting MLLA#70, an event started by Susan and now being carried on by Lisa of Lisa's Vegetarian Kitchen.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 39 

Bon Appetit...