Smoked Spiced Eggplant

January 18th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 4 to 6

INGREDIENTS

1 large eggplant
3 tablespoons canola oil
1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 large red onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
2 garlic cloves, ground to a paste in a mortar and pestle
1 tablespoon unsweetened shredded coconut (optional)
1 tablespoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon garam masala
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 ripe medium tomatoes, chopped
½ fresh hot green chile, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
Juice of ½ lemon

DIRECTIONS

Roast the eggplant directly on the burner of a gas stove over medium heat, turning often, until the skin is completely blackened and the flesh is soft, about 10 minutes. Or, roast the eggplant on a cookie sheet in a 500°F oven until the skin is blackened, about 20 minutes. Let stand until cool enough to handle, then pull off the skin with your fingers, rinsing your hands under running water as you work. (Don’t worry if you can’t get all the charred skin off.) Cut off and discard the stem. Then put the eggplant in a bowl and mash it to a puree with a potato masher.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan, wok, or kadai over medium-high heat. Add the ginger, and cook, stirring, 30 seconds. Add the onion and salt, and cook, stirring often, until the onion begins to brown around the edges, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic, and cook, stirring, until the raw smell disappears, about 30 seconds. Add the coconut, if using, and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add the coriander, cumin, garam masala, and cayenne, and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Now add about 1 tablespoon of water, and cook, stirring, until the onion begins to stick, about 1 more minute.

Add the tomatoes, and give the mixture a stir. Add the mashed eggplant, and cook, stirring often, 5 minutes. Stir in the fresh chile and 1 tablespoon of the cilantro. Stir in the lemon juice, and taste for salt. Spoon into a serving bowl, sprinkle with the remaining tablespoon of cilantro, and serve hot.

© Recipe Property of Suvir Saran

Cucumber Raita

January 14th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 4 to 6

INGREDIENTS

2¼ cups plain yogurt
1 large cucumber, peeled and shredded
1 fresh hot green chile, seeded and finely chopped
½ teaspoon ground toasted cumin
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon salt, to taste

DIRECTIONS

Whisk the yogurt in a bowl until smooth and lightened. Add the shredded cucumber, green chile, toasted cumin, and cayenne, and stir. Chill well, and stir in the salt just before serving.

© Recipe Property of Suvir Saran

Parathas Stuffed with Potato, Chiles, and Cilantro

January 14th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Makes about 12 Parathas

INGREDIENTS

1 cup whole wheat flour plus 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour, or 2 cups chapati flour
Salt
1 to 1¼ cups water
1½ pounds boiling potaotes, boiled in their skins until tender (25 to 30 minutes) and cooked
½ cup very finely chopped red onion
1 fresh hot green chile, very finely chopped
1½ tablespoons very finely chopped fresh cilantro
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon garam masala
¼ teaspoon cumin seeds or ½ teaspoon carom seeds
Juice of ½ lemon or lime
All purpose-flour, for rolling
Canola oil, for cooking
Butter, for serving

DIRECTIONS

Mix the flour(s) and 1 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Add ½ cup of the water to the flour mixture, and mix with your hand to combine. Add another ½ cup water, and mix again. Continue adding water, a little at a time, until the dough forms a ball. The dough should take about 1 cup of water.

Now knead the dough vigorously on a clean, unfloured work surface until the dough is moist, soft, and slightly sticky, but doesn’t cling to clean hands or the work surface, about 5 minutes. If the dough is try, dip your fingers into some water and knead the water into the dough. Put the dough into a clean bowl, cover with a clean damp kitchen towel pressed directly onto the surface, and let rest at 10 minutes or up to 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, peel the potatoes and mash them roughly in your hands in a bowl. Add 1 teaspoon salt, the onion, chile, cilantro, spices, and lemon or lime juice, and mix well to form a fairly smooth mixture (there will be small lumps present).

When the dough has rested, set out a bowl of all-purpose flour and a small bowl of canola oil, with a spoon, on your work surface. Lightly flour your work surface as well.

Break off a piece of dough about the size of a gold ball. Toss it first in the bowl of flour, and then roll it between the palms of your hands to make a ball. Set the ball on your work surface, and flatten to a 2-inch disk. Now roll the disk, flouring the work surface and dough as needed, into a thin round 4½ to 5-inches in diameter. Mound about ¼ cup of the potato mixture into the center of the dough rough. Bring the edges of the up over the top of the filling, and press them together to make a pouch. Press down on the neck of the pouch with the palm of one hand to make a slightly rounded disk. Turn the disk in the bowl of flour, and roll it out again into a round about 6-inches in diameter. Continue to roll all of the remaining dough into parathas, and stack them on the plate with sheets of plastic wrap between them.

Heat a griddle or frying pan (preference goes to cast-iron) over medium-high heat. Place the dough round on the heated, ungreased griddle or in the pan, and cook until the dough darkens slightly and you see bubbles begin to form underneath the surface of the dough, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Now you flip the paratha with a spatula, and cook until the bubbles form again.

With the back of the spoon, coat the top of the paratha with oil. Flip, and coat the other side with oil. Now continue cooking, pressing gently on the bread the the back of the spoon and moving the spoon around in a circular motion to press the bread onto the pan for even browning. When the bottom of the bread has browned, flip and repeat. Do this a few times until both sides of the paratha are golden brown and very crisp, 2 to 3 minutes in total.

Remove the paratha from the pan and spread with butter. Serve immediately. Then continue on this way until all of the parathas have been cooked.

© Recipe Property of Suvir Saran

Lahori Chicken Curry with Whole Spices & Potatoes

January 14th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

A 4-pound chicken, cut into 8 to 10 pieces and skinned
3 medium red boiling potatoes, peeled and quartered
¾ teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
Salt
1½ medium onions, roughly diced
5 garlic cloves
A 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut in half crosswise
3 tablespoons canola oil
A 1-inch piece cinnamon stick
12 green cardamom pods
9 whole cloves
10 black peppercorns
3 whole dried red chiles
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
½ teaspoon cumin seeds
1 fresh hot green chile, cut in half
2 large tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
¼ cup plain yogurt, whisked until smooth
1 cup water
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
Juice of 1 lemon

DIRECTIONS

Combine the chicken, potatoes, ½ teaspoon of the turmeric, ¼ teaspoon of the cayenne, and ¼ teaspoon salt in a bowl and stir to coat the chicken and potato with the spices. Let stand while you make the sauce.

Finely mince the onions, garlic, and ginger in a food processor and set aside.

Combine 2 tablespoons of the oil, the cinnamon stick, cardamom, cloves, black peppercorns, red chiles, coriander, and cumin in a large casserole over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring until the cinnamon unfurls, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the minced onion mixture, the green chile, and 1 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring, until the vegetables brown around the edges, 10 to 15 minutes.

Remove the cinnamon and green chile, and stir in the remaining ¼ teaspoon turmeric and ¼ teaspoon cayenne. Add the tomatoes and tomato paste and cook, stirring, 5 minutes. Transfer to a food processor or blender and puree until smooth; set aside.

Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in the same pan over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and potatoes and cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Add the yogurt 1 tablespoon at a time and stir well after each addition. Cook, stirring, 2 minutes, to evaporate some of the moisture.

Add the pureed tomato, mixture and bring to a boil. Stir in the water. Return to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer partially covered, until the chicken is cooked through, about 30 minutes. Stir every 5 to 8 minutes and scrape the bottom of the pan to keep the sauce from sticking. Then uncover and cook 5 more minutes to reduce and thicken. Stir in the cilantro and lemon juice. Taste for salt and serve hot.

© Recipe Property of Suvir Saran

Stir Fried Carrots with Cumin and Lime

January 14th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 4 to 6

INGREDIENTS

2½ tablespoons canola oil
2 teaspoons black mustard seeds (optional)
A 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into a fine julienne
½ fresh hot green chile, minced
3 whole dried red chiles
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
8 fresh or 12 frozen curry leaves, torn into pieces (optional)
1½ pounds carrots, peeled and grated on the large holes of a grater
¾ teaspoon salt, or to taste
Juice of ½ lime or lemon

DIRECTIONS

Combine the oil and mustard seeds, if using, in a large wok, kadai, or trying pan over medium-high heat.

Cover (the mustard seeds pop and splatter) and cook until you hear the mustard seeds crackle, 1 to 2 minutes. (Or heat just the oil in the same pan.)

Add the ginger, fresh and dried chiles, cumin, and curry leaves, if using, and cook uncovered, stirring until the ginger crisps a little, about 1½ minutes. (stand back if using curry leaves; they spit when they heat in oil).

Add the carrots and cook, stirring, until warned through, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the salt and the lime or lemon juice. Taste for salt and serve hot or cold.

© Recipe Property of Suvir Saran

Stir Fried Cauliflower with Potato & Crunchy Bengali Spice

January 14th, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons canola oil
1 teaspoon nigella seeds (optional)
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
Rounded ¼ teaspoon coriander seeds
A 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
1½ pounds red boiling potatoes, peeled, halved, and sliced lengthwise about ½ inch thick
1 small to medium head cauliflower, cored and cut into medium florets
18 teaspoon ground cumin
18 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 fresh hot green chile, chopped
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

DIRECTIONS

Combine the oil, nigella, if using, cumin, and coriander seeds in a large wok, kadai, or frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring, until the cumin turns golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the ginger and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add the potatoes and stir well to coat with the spices. Then cover and cook until the potatoes have browned some and have begun to soften and stick to the bottom of the pan, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir three or four times during this time and check the cooking. If the potatoes brown too quickly, turn the heat down. If they aren’t browning at all, raise the heat.

Add the cauliflower, ground cumin, cayenne, and fresh chile and stir to coat the cauliflower with the spices. Then cover and cook, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan three of four times during cooking, until the potatoes are well browned, about 10 minutes.

Sprinkle the vegetables with salt, cover, and continue cooking until the cauliflower is nicely browned and the vegetables are tender, 5 to 10 minutes. Stir the vegetables every 3 to 4 minutes and check the cooking; if they begin to stick badly and burn, add a teaspoon of water and scrape with a spatula to loosen the spcies and crispy bits from the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle with the chopped cilantro and serve hot.

© Recipe Property of Suvir Saran

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