Friday, August 31, 2012

Potato masala - pressure cooker recipe

This is a one pot recipe to make potato masala for dosa and poori. I got this recipe from my mom during one of our conversations about food. I would always follow the elaborate method of boiling the potatoes, peeling them and mashing them for the masala. This recipe is a shortcut and you can make it just before your guests arrive. 
Yields the same quantity you see in the picture

Potato masala - pressure cooker recipe

Potatoes - 2 medium sized
Onion - 1 medium
Tomato - 1 medium
Green chillies - 2 or 3 (adjust according to taste)
Mustard, jeera, urad dal and curry leaves for seasoning
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Oil - 1 -2 tbsp
Lime juice - 2 tbsp
Asafoetida - 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste
Fresh cilantro for garnish

1. Peel the potatoes and cut into cubes.
2. Chop the onion and green chillies.
3. Chop the tomatoes finely.
4. Pour oil in the pressure cooker and season with mustard, jeera, urad dal and curry leaves.
5. Add the onion and green chillies and saute until soft and add the asafoetida.
6. Next add the tomatoes and saute for 1-2 minutes.
7. Add the cubed potatoes, turmeric powder and salt.
8. Add about 1/2 cup of water and give it a good stir.
9. Close the pressure cooker and switch off after 3 whistles.
10. Wait a while and open the cooker and stir. Check for salt. 
11. Add the lime juice and garnish with fresh cilantro.

Serve with masala dosa or poori. I served the potato masala on the side with dosa and chutney.

1. If using for dosa add less water. 
2. Use a potato masher if required. I just use the back of the spoon to mash and stir the masala.
3. After opening the cooker if the masala is a bit watery, just let it boil for some time. Do not use the lid when boiling. This helps evaporate some of the liquid.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Zucchini and spinach saute

A perfect side dish for rice or rotis, this subzi can be made even with frozen spinach.
Zucchini and spinach saute recipe


Zucchini - 2
Fresh spinach leaves - 4-5 cups
Onion - 1 medium
Garlic - 2 cloves finely chopped
Green chillies - 2
Mustard, jeera and urad dal for seasoning
Turmeric powder
Oil - 1 tbsp
A few curry leaves

1. Peel the skin off the zucchini. Chop into medium sized cubes.
2. Wash the spinach leaves and chop finely.
3. Chop the onions.
4. Pour oil in a pan and season with mustard, jeera, urad dal and curry leaves.
5. Add the onions and saute until soft.
6. Next add the garlic and chopped green chillies.
7. Now add the chopped spinach and saute for a minute before adding the zucchini.
8. Add the turmeric powder and salt to taste. Cover and cook for 2-3 minutes.
9. Remove the lid and continue cooking until the zucchini is cooked.

1. Do not cover and cook for a long time as the zucchini will let out a lot of water.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Cracked wheat moong dal payasam - in a slow cooker

Creamy, sweet and yummy .... that's exactly how this slow cooked payasam tastes. With just a few ingredients and a slow cooker you can create this easy recipe for any occasion. 
Cracked wheat moong dal payasam recipe

(for a 3 1/2 quart slow cooker)

Cracked wheat (coarse) - 1 cup
Moong dal - 1/4 cup
Whole milk/evaporated milk - 4 cups
Condensed milk - 1/2 cup (adjust according to taste)
Jaggery powder - 2-3 tbsp
Elaichi powder - 1/4 tsp
Raisins - a few
Cashews (optional)
Ghee to fry the raisins/nuts and moong dal - 1 tbsp

1. Saute the moong dal in 1/2 tbsp of ghee.
2. Wash the cracked wheat and add to the slow cooker.
3. Add the sauteed moong dal.
4. Pour the milk and stir well.
5. Next add the elaichi powder and condensed milk and stir to combine.
6. Cover with the lid and set on low for about 2 hours. Give it a stir after one hour.
7. When 3/4 cooked add the jaggery powder and mix well.
8. Set the slow cooker on high for the next one hour.
9. If you see the payasam bubbling reduce the setting to low and continue to cook for another 30 minutes.
10. You need to cook until you get a creamy consistency. 
11. Garnish with raisins and cashews (if using). 

1. The jaggery powder gives the payasam its color.
2. You can skip the moong dal and make the payasam with just the cracked wheat.
3. Cooking time varies depending on the size of the slow cooker.

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Tawa Pulao

This is an awesome recipe that uses left over cooked rice. Considered as a popular street food in Mumbai, this recipe uses pav bhaji masala that gives it an unique taste. The street vendors make this pulao on the tawa and that's where it gets it name from. I used a regular non stick kadai/pan to make the pulao. This recipe is adapted from Sanjeev Kapoor's recipe. Check out this link for his recipe.
Tawa Pulao recipe


Cooked basmati rice – 2 cups
Onion - 1 medium chopped lengthwise
Ginger garlic paste - 1/2 tsp
Carrots – 1 (diced into small cubes)
Frozen green peas – 1/4 cup
Green Bell Pepper – 1 diced
Canned tomatoes  – 2 to 3 tbsps
Oil – 1 to 2 tbsps
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Red chilli powder - 1 tsp (adjust to taste)
Pav Bhaji masala powder – 1-2 tsp
Salt to taste
Fresh cilantro for garnish

1. Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds. Once they splutter add the onions. Saute until soft and add the ginger garlic paste.
2. Add the green peas, bell pepper and carrot, cover and cook until almost done. Next add the chopped tomatoes and cook for 1-2 mintues. Reduce the flame to low and add the turmeric powder, red chilli powder, salt and pav bhaji masala and stir until it blends with the veggies. You don't want to burn the spices.
3. Add the rice into the pan and stir well. Check for salt and add more if you need at this stage.
4. Garnish with fresh cilantro. Serve with raita.

1. I added the tomato after the veggies were 3/4 cooked. This helps keep the pulao moist.
2. If you like the rice a bit more tangy, you can add a few squirts of tomato ketchup along with the tomatoes.