Shital's-Kitchen: May 2017

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Rawa Idli

The beginning of the long weekend with a light but a lavish breakfast/brunch!! No just kidding, this breakfast looks lavish but it is the simplest and the quickest breakfast I could make today. We are out of regular bread, no milk for tea or coffee or cereal, no poha either. So most of the breakfast ingredients are missing today. I did have semolina. fine rawa, but my husband is not a big fan of upma. So making upma on a weekend would not have been a very good idea. The best I could do is quickly whip up some instant idli batter. With my instant idli chutney powder that I store in the refrigerator, serving idli this morning was super easy. 

Rawa and Kanchipuram idli would be my favorite at restaurants but not many restaurants served it, and that made me really sad. I used to make rawa idli at home all the time and thought that it was kanchipuram idli. :) Little that I knew that they were different, and just realized that they are not the same. How ignorant could I be. But anyways my family loves these idlis. They are so easy and quick to make, and looks great too. Love the soft and puffy idlis with slight crush of veggies and fried cashews in it. I make this for lunch too...tastes delicious when dipped in hot sambar. 

Also the star of this plate and what made my husband go WOW today is serving my simple and quick idlis on our fresh banana leaf. Some of you would know that we have few banana plants growing in our front yard. I had planted these specially because banana tree and leaves are auspicious to us and it would also provide privacy from the street. We do not separate pups from the mother plant so we almost have a banana tree jungle now and we love it. Here are the pictures.





Ingredients: (makes around 20 idlis)
1+1/2 cup rawa or fine soji or semolina
1/4 cup yogurt
1+1/4 cup water
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup veggies (green peas, chopped green beans, chopped carrots)
2 tbsp. oil
1 tbsp. urad dal
1 tsp. mustard seeds
2-3 tbsp. cashew nuts
1+1/2 tsp. ENO fruit salt
  • Mix rawa with yogurt and water to make a batter. Keep it aside for 5 minutes.
  • Add chopped veggies and salt and milk well.
  • In a temper bowl, heat oil. Fry urad dal, mustard seeds, and cashews till they turn brown.
  • Pour temper into the rawa batter. Mix well.
  • Keep the Idli cooker ready with water to start steaming. Grease idli molds.
  • Add ENO to rawa idli batter. Mix well. The batter with bubble and froth.
  • Pour spoon full of batter in each idli mold.
  • Steam for 8-10 minutes.
  • Turn the steam off and remove the molds.
  • Let it rest for 2 minutes before removing idli out of the molds.
  • Serve with chutney and sambar.
  • Enjoy!

Here is step-by-step pictorial recipe:
Semolina/rawa/fine sooji

Mix rawa with yogurt and water to make a batter. Keep it aside for 5 minutes.

Add chopped veggies and salt and milk well.

In a temper bowl, heat oil. Fry urad dal, mustard seeds, and cashews till they turn brown.


Pour temper into the rawa batter. Mix well.

Keep the Idli cooker ready with water to start steaming. Grease idli molds.


Add ENO to rawa idli batter. Mix well. The batter with bubble and froth.


Pour spoon full of batter in each idli mold.

Steam for 8-10 minutes.

Turn the steam off and remove the molds.





Have a Great Weekend!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Schezwan Noodle Frankie

If you are from Mumbai, you will surely know of this popular street food! Growing up in Mumbai this was my favorite too. Just an introduction: Frankie is a roll or a wrap with burst of flavors. A simple street -food years back has turned into fun and staple of most youths in Mumbai. If you go to a Frankie stall you would mostly see college students there. It is supposedly a popular hangout place for them.

I love the taste and texture of Frankie, and I remember making my first Frankie when I was 14... I had just come home from school with Frankie on my mind and had to recreate the recipe. And you know who my critic was then? my darling, my sweetheart, my sister. She liked it and she approved it!!  More than 20 year now, I have followed my same created recipe, shared Frankie with my friends and family, made it for picnics and parties, and it has always been loved by all. Check out my post and recipe or Mumbai Potato Frankie by clicking on this link.
http://shitals-kitchen.blogspot.com/2013/05/mumbai-potato-frankie.html


Although we loved street-food Frankie, we did not belong to the family where street-food or outside food or fast-food was allowed. We were not given allowances or pocket money to spend on whatever we wanted. There was surely a check on what we would do and where we would go. The easiest option to all this was to replicate delicious food at home. And this practice still prevails!

Base of Frankie roll is a crepe made of all purpose flour/maida. I do substitute this for whole wheat flour and it still is delicious. My earlier Frankie post is made of organic whole wheat flour. Growing up, there were not many stuffings offered. It would either be a vegetarian one made with potatoes and a non-vegetarian one with chicken. But now, various flavors and stuffings are available, but the simple one is still my favorite. In Mumbai I would stop and go over their entire menu but order the simple old fashioned Frankie.

This post is my trial to different stuffing. This Frankie is stuffed with spicy schezwan noodles. On the bed of crunchy cabbage and chopped onions, it has perfect flavor and texture.

Ingredients:
To make 6-8 crepes:
2 cups maida/ all purpose flour
1 tsp.salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 +1/2 cup water
Oil for shallow frying

For stuffing:
1 cup chopped onions
1 cup shredded chabbage
1/4-1/2 cup schewan sauce
Vegetable schezwan noodles
Chaat Masala

To make crepes:
  • Mix all purpose flour, salt, baking soda, and water to make a thick pouring batter.
  • Heat a non stick griddle.
  • Pour around 1/4 to 1/2 cup batter on a medium hot griddle and spread it evenly neither very thin nor thick. Use few drops of oil around and on top of the crepe and fry till cooked on both sides. 
  • Leave in a plate and stack all the crepes on each other.

Make schezwan noodles and keep them aside. Check my recipe here.

To assemble:
  • Heat the griddle once again.
  • Put the prepared crepe and press lightly and fry on both sides till it turns slightly golden brown.
  • Remove in a plate. Spread some schezwan sauce on the crepe. Spread shredded cabbage and chopped onions. 
  • Put some schezwan noodles and sprinkle chaat masala. 
  • Roll it lightly and place the Frankie roll in a bag or wrap with paper and serve.

Here is step-by-step pictorial recipe:
Mix all purpose flour, salt, baking soda, and water to make a thick pouring batter.
Heat a non stick griddle.
Pour around 1/4 to 1/2 cup batter on a medium hot griddle and spread it evenly neither very thin nor thick. Use few drops of oil around and on top of the crepe and fry till cooked on both sides.

Leave in a plate and stack all the crepes on each other.

Put the prepared crepe and press lightly and fry on both sides till it turns slightly golden brown.

Remove in a plate. Spread some schezwan sauce on the crepe. Spread shredded cabbage and chopped onions. 
Put some schezwan noodles and sprinkle chaat masala.

Roll it lightly and place the Frankie roll in a bag or wrap with paper and serve.



Enjoy Mumbai Style Schezwan Noodle Frankie!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Tawa Bharwa Sabzi

When it comes to grilling or charcoal cooking, it is normal to feel overwhelmed,  nervous,  or confused. Do not worry, basically anything that can be cooked over heat or baked in an oven can be cooked over charcoal grill. 

So while we had our grill and gazebo all set up last weekend, we had great time using it. I created my small backyard kitchen with my spice box and ingredients needed, and created a fun meal.

Not just Paneer tikka, kababs, corns, and yams...BBQ and backyard parties can be enjoyed with so many fun recipes!!

Tawa vegetable, or tawa bhindi (check my recipe here) is one of my husband favorite. So after slightly tweaking the recipe I created a fun meal that can be used for BBQ parties. Tawa (griddle) Bharwa (stuffed) Sabzi (vegetable) is a platter or veggies stuffed with spices and cooked on a griddle. This is perfect for serving crisp, cooked, and spices veggies as-is or with flat bread. And I love to use various veggies for this!! I can say use whatever you like. There are just no restrictions for creating something delicious.

Ingredients (serves 4-5)
Veggies:
4-5 medium to small potatoes
2 cups okra
3-4 round small eggplants
Yam
2-3 karela/ bitter melon
4-5 small onions
2-3 Anaheim peppers
2 cups button mushrooms
  • Wash and wipe veggies well. 
  • Lightly scrape bitter melon/karela and slit it. remove large seeds from inside. Use around tsp. of salt and rub it well inside and out. Leave it aside for 10 minutes. Then wash bitter melon well and pat dry with paper towel. This will take away most of the bitterness still keeping the flavor of this veggie.
  • Peel yam or scrape the peel lightly. Slit and keep it aside.
  • Slit other veggies to stuff them.
For stuffing
1 cup oil
1 tsp. mustard seeds
1 tsp. cumin seeds
2 inch cinnamon stick
5-6 cloves
5 tbsp. coriander seeds
1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
2-3 tbsp. red chili powder
1 tsp. kasuri methi
1 tbsp. amchur powder (raw mango powder)
1 tsp. chaat masala
2 tsp. salt
1 cup besan/chick pea flour
1/4 cup grated jaggery (optional)
  • In a pan heat 3 tbsp oil. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, cloves and cinnamon stick. Fry for a minutes till mustard seeds crackle. Add coriander seeds and turn of the heat. 
  • Let the fried spices cool for 5 minutes.
  • Add turmeric powder, red chili powder, kasuri methi, chaat masala, amchur powder, and salt, 
  • Mix well.
  • Grind the spices well in mortar and pestle or in a spice grinder.
  • Mix the spice mixture with 1 cup besan/chick pea flour and jaggery. Add 3 tbsp. oil and mix it well till spices, jaggery, flour, and oil mix well
  • Use this mixture to stuff into all the veggies.
  • Heat a large tawa/griddle or a pan. 
  • Add 2 tsp. oil.
  • The veggies layered on tawa/griddles will be in the order of thei cooking time. Hard veggies or veggies that take longer time to cook will go first on the griddle and will be given 5 extra minutes to cook before adding the next stuffed veggie.
Here is the order in which I add veggies
1. Stuffed potatoes and Stuffed yam
2. Stuffed karela and stuffed eggplant
3. Stuffed onions
4. Stuffed okra/bhindi and stuffed Anaheim peppers
5. Mushrooms
  • Put some oil over the veggies to cook. If cooking in the pan, you can cover the pan with a lid, and allow veggies to cook while tossing them occasionally.
  • If using a grill, cover the grill and lover charcoal heat so that veggies cook in well. Veggies might appear charred from outside but are well cooked from inside.
Here is step-by-step pictorial recipe

4-5 medium to small potatoes
2 cups okra
3-4 round small eggplants
Yam
2-3 karela/ bitter melon
4-5 small onions
2-3 Anaheim peppers
2 cups button mushrooms

Wash and wipe veggies well. 
Lightly scrape bitter melon/karela and slit it. remove large seeds from inside. Use around tsp. of salt and rub it well inside and out. Leave it aside for 10 minutes. Then wash bitter melon well and pat dry with paper towel. This will take away most of the bitterness still keeping the flavor of this veggie.
Peel yam or scrape the peel lightly. Slit and keep it aside.
Slit other veggies to stuff them.



In a pan heat 3 tbsp oil. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, cloves and cinnamon stick. Fry for a minutes till mustard seeds crackle. Add coriander seeds and turn of the heat.

Let the fried spices cool for 5 minutes.
Add turmeric powder, red chili powder, kasuri methi, chaat masala, amchur powder, and salt, 
Mix well.
Grind the spices well in mortar and pestle or in a spice grinder.




Mix the spice mixture with 1 cup besan/chick pea flour and jaggery. Add 3 tbsp. oil and mix it well till spices, jaggery, flour, and oil mix well


Use this mixture to stuff into all the veggies.


Heat a large tawa/griddle or a pan.
Add 2 tsp. oil.
The veggies layered on tawa/griddles will be in the order of thei cooking time. Hard veggies or veggies that take longer time to cook will go first on the griddle and will be given 5 extra minutes to cook before adding the next stuffed veggie.

 Stuffed potatoes and Yam

Stuffed Karela and Stuffed eggplants

Stuffed onions

Stuffed okra and peppers


Mushrooms









Enjoy the Grilling Season!