Jeera Rice

Jeera Rice

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Serves: 4

Ingredients
  • 1 cup uncooked rice
  • 1 ½ cups or more of water
  • 1 tablespoon Ghee or olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 to 3 cloves
  • 2 to 3 whole cardamoms
  • Pinch of asafoetida
  • ½ teaspoon salt or to taste
Directions
  1. Heat Ghee or oil in a heavy medium pot. Add cumin seeds and let it sizzle. Add remaining ingredients except water and salt. Add rice and sauté it until rice is coated with oil or Ghee.
  2. Add water and salt. Cover the pot and let the rice cook until soft, about 10 to 15 minutes. Add more water if necessary.
  3. Can be served with dal, Kathi and any vegetable curry.

 

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Bhinda Nu Shaak

Bhinda nu Shaak

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Serves: 4

Everyday Okra
Ingredients
  • 1 lb. bhinda (okras)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • Pinch of asafoetida powder
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon dhana jeeru (spice blend of coriander and cumin powder)
  • ½ teaspoon salt or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon sugar or to taste
Directions
  1. Wash okras and dry it with paper towel. Okras should be as dry as possible otherwise it will become sticky. Cut into ½ inch thick pieces, discarding top and bottom pieces.
  2. In a non-stick pan, heat oil on medium high heat. Add mustard seeds and let it sizzle. Lower the heat to medium. Add turmeric, chili powder and asafoetida. Add okras and stir everything well. Cover and let it cook for 10-12 minutes or until okras are tender, stirring occasionally. Initially okras will be slimy but as it cooks it will become less slimy. Do not add salt to keep okras less slimy and to crisp faster.
  3. Once okra is cooked, add salt, dhana jeeru and sugar. Stir everything and let it cook uncovered on lowest heat until okras become crispy (almost dry and golden brown), about 15 to 20 minutes. At this point you can also transfer okras into 350 degrees oven to make it crispy, for 15 minutes. Serve warm with any type of Indian flat bread.

 

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Paratha

Plain Paratha

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Serves: 2

Layered whole wheat flour flat bread
Ingredients
  • 1 cup whole wheat or chapatti flour, see Note.
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons olive or canola oil, for dough
  • Water as needed
  • ½ cup or more all purpose flour, for dusting
  • ½ cup or more canola oil, for brushing and semi frying
Directions
  1. Put chapatti or whole wheat flour in a medium mixing bowl. Add salt and 2 teaspoons of oil and mix it with hands. Gradually add water while mixing and kneading until it makes soft and smooth dough. Cover the dough with a plate or a kitchen towel and let it rest for 30 minutes to one hour.
  2. Pour 1 teaspoon oil on top of the dough and knead it few times until smooth. Divide the dough into 6 to 7 golf ball size balls.
  3. Put about half a cup of all-purpose flour into a flat dish. Roll a ball of dough into flour and flatten it on a smooth cutting board (wooden or marble). Dip the flatten dough circle into flour again on both sides. First roll out a biscuit size small circle, about 3 inches in diameter. Brush the circle with oil on top side and dip the oiled side into flour. Fold the circle in half. Again brush the top side with oil and dip into flour. Fold the half circle again to make a triangle shape. Dip the triangle into flour on both sides and start rolling on cutting board with a rolling pin. Make about six inch triangle (paratha), dusting with flour if the dough starts sticking to the board.
  4. Heat a griddle or a flat non-stick pan on a medium heat. Transfer the paratha on to heated pan. Let the first side cook for 30 seconds to 40 seconds or until small bubbles appear on surface and flip to the other side. Let the other side cook for same amount of time. Pour about one teaspoon of oil on the top surface of paratha and flip. Cook the paratha by pressing with a spatula on top surface for 30 seconds and flip. Cook the other side same way. Remove from the heat. Repeat the process with all the remaining dough balls.
Notes
You can buy chapatti flour from Indian grocery stores.

 

 

Stuffed Paratha

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Serves: 4

Ingredients
For Dough:
  • 2 cups chapatti or whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon olive or canola oil
  • Water as needed
For making paratha:
  • ½ cup or more all-purpose flour, for dusting
  • ⅓ cup or more canola oil, for semi frying
For potato stuffed paratha:
  • 2 medium sized russet potatoes, boiled and mashed
  • 1 jalapeno or serrano, finely minced
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 2 teaspoons sugar or to taste
  • Juice of ½ a lemon
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro, finely chopped
For cabbage stuffed paratha:
  • ¼ of whole medium sized cabbage, finely shredded
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon dhana-jeeru (spice blend of ground coriander and cumin)
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • ¼ teaspoon asafetida
For red cabbage, carrot and tofu paratha:
  • ¼ of whole medium sized red cabbage, finely shredded
  • 1 small carrot, finely shredded
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, finely minced
  • 4 to 5 scallions, finely chopped
  • ½ cup finely chopped cilantro
  • ½ package of extra firm tofu
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Directions
  1. Put chapatti or whole wheat flour in a medium mixing bowl. Add salt and 2 tablespoons oil and mix it with hands. Gradually add water and knead until it makes soft and smooth dough. Cover the dough with a plate or a kitchen towel and let it rest for 30 minutes to one hour.
  2. Pour 1 teaspoon oil on top of the dough and knead it few times until smooth. Divide the dough into 14 to 15 golf ball size balls.
  3. For potato stuffed paratha: Combine mashed potatoes along with rest of ingredients into a medium size mixing bowl. Divide mashed potatoes into 14 to 15 golf ball size balls.
  4. For cabbage stuffed paratha: Combined spices and salt into a small mixing bowl. Roughly divide shredded cabbage into 4 equal parts. Transfer one part of shredded cabbage to small mixing bowl. Sprinkle about ¼ teaspoon of spice rub on top and mix with cabbage. This will make about 4 parathas. Once you ran out of seasoned cabbage, repeat the process to season next part of cabbage. It’s best to season cabbage in small parts so that it does not become too soggy.
  5. For red cabbage, carrot and tofu stuffed paratha: Remove excess water from tofu by placing between two baking sheets and weighing down with heavy objects for 10-15 minutes. Cut tofu roughly into small pieces and transfer to food processor bowl. Pulse 7 to 8 times until tofu is crumbled and stays to gather. Transfer to large mixing bowl and combine with rest of ingredients of red cabbage, carrot and tofu paratha.
  6. To make paratha, put about half a cup of all-purpose flour into a flat dish. Roll the ball of dough into flour and flatten it on a smooth cutting board (wooden or marble). Dip the flatten dough into flour again on both sides. First roll out a biscuit size (about 3 inch in diameter) small circle. For both cabbage stuffed paratha, scoop cabbage with small ice cream scoop, packing tightly. Drop scooped cabbage in the middle of small circle. For potato stuffed paratha, put one ball of spiced mashed potatoes in the middle. Gradually make folds around the edges to cover vegetables. Pinch the folds together, twist the dough on top and press the dough down so that it makes small circle. Dip the circle into flour on both sides .Roll out into a circle about 6 inches in diameter, dusting with flour if the dough starts sticking to the board. If some stuffing comes out or dough breaks, it’s fine.
  7. Heat a griddle or a flat non-stick pan on a medium heat. Transfer the paratha on to heated pan. Let the first side cook for 30 seconds to 40 seconds or until small bubbles appear on surface and flip to the other side. Let the other side cook for same amount of time. Pour about one teaspoon of oil on the top surface of paratha and flip. Cook the paratha by pressing with a spatula on top surface for 30 seconds and flip. Cook the other side same way. Remove from the heat. Repeat the process with all the remaining dough balls and filling.
  8. Serve warm stuffed parathas with curry or cilantro and/or tomato chutney.
Notes
Stuffed paratha can also be made with variety of vegetables other than potatoes and cabbage like shredded carrots, shredded daikon, mashed cauliflower, mashed green peas, etc.

 
Scallion Paratha

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Serves: 4

I make these paratha in place of scallion pancakes to go with Asian food.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup whole wheat or chapatti flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt or taste
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 teaspoons canola or vegetable oil, for dough
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 3 scallions, finely sliced
  • Water as needed
  • ½ cup or more all-purpose flour, for dusting
  • ½ cup or more canola or vegetable oil, for brushing and semi frying
Directions
  1. Put chapatti or whole wheat flour in a medium mixing bowl. Add salt, pepper, scallions, 2 teaspoons of oil and sesame oil and mix it with hands. Gradually add water while mixing and kneading until it makes soft and smooth dough. Cover the dough with a plate or a kitchen towel and let it rest for 30 minutes to one hour.
  2. Pour 1 teaspoon oil on top of the dough and knead it few times until smooth. Divide the dough into 6 to 7 golf ball size balls.
  3. Put about half a cup of all-purpose flour into a flat dish. Roll a ball of dough into flour and flatten it on a smooth cutting board (wooden or marble). Dip the flatten dough circle into flour again on both sides. First roll out a biscuit size small circle, about 3 inches in diameter. Brush the circle with oil on top side and dip the oiled side into flour. Fold the circle in half. Again brush the top side with oil and dip into flour. Fold the half circle again to make a triangle shape. Dip the triangle into flour on both sides and start rolling on cutting board with a rolling pin. Make about six inch triangle (paratha), dusting with flour if the dough starts sticking to the board.
  4. Heat a griddle or a flat non-stick pan on a medium heat. Transfer the paratha on to heated pan. Let the first side cook for 30 seconds to 40 seconds or until small bubbles appear on surface and flip to the other side. Let the other side cook for same amount of time. Pour about one teaspoon of oil on the top surface of paratha and flip. Cook the paratha by pressing with a spatula on top surface for 30 seconds and flip. Cook the other side same way. Remove from the heat. Repeat the process with all the remaining dough balls.

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Gajar Ka Halwa

Gajar Ka Halwa

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Serves: 20

Carrot pudding
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds carrots, peeled and shredded
  • 1 16 oz container ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup each golden raisins and cashews (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon ghee (clarified butter) (optional)
  • 1 cup sugar or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ½ cup sweetened shredded coconut, for garnish (optional)
Directions
  1. In a non-stick soup pot or frying pan, heat ghee slowly. Add ricotta cheese and sauté it until fragrant. Or start heating ricotta cheese in a pot or pan. Add cashews and raisins and sauté it for one minute. Add carrots and heavy cream. Mix everything and let it cook, uncovered, until all the water has evaporated, 7 to 8 minutes. Stir the mixture occasionally and watch it carefully so that it does not brown or stick to bottom.
  2. Add sugar and mix everything and again let it cook, uncovered, until all the water has evaporated, 12 to 15 minutes. Stir the mixture occasionally and watch it carefully so that it does not brown or stick to bottom. Let it cool down slightly, add cardamom and mix well.
  3. Transfer it to a pie dish or shallow pan and spread evenly. Garnish it with coconut. Can be served warm or at room temperature.

 

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Vegetable Pulao

Vegetable Pulao

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Serves: 6

Rice Pilaf
Ingredients
  • 2 cups basmati rice, uncooked
  • 5 cups of water
  • 1 small red onion, cut into thin half moon shape slices
  • 1 small potato, cut into thin slices like fries
  • 6 to 8 small cauliflower florets
  • ½ small carrot, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil or ghee
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 10 to 12 pieces of cashews
  • ¼ cup golden raisins
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and finely minced
  • ½ finely chopped jalapeno chili (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder or red chili flakes
  • 2 to 3 each whole cloves and cardamom pods
  • ¼ inch piece of cinnamon stick
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon garam masala
Directions
  1. Wash rice and soak it for 30 minutes to an hour (optional) and drain well.
  2. In a soup pot or Datch oven heat ghee or oil over medium high heat. Once it shimmers, add cumin seeds, mustard seeds and let them sizzle. Add cashew, raisins, cloves, cardamom pods, cinnamon stick and bay leaves and saute for 30 seconds. Add onion, garlic, ginger and garam masala. Let onion sauté until light golden brown, 2 minutes. Add remaining vegetables except peas, green chili and red chili flakes or powder. Stir the vegetables and sauté them for 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. Add rice and sauté it for 1 to 2 minutes so that rice is coated with spices and oil or ghee. Add salt and water, stir everything and cover the pot. Lower the heat and let rice cook until fork tender, about 25 to 30 minutes. At this point you can also transfer the rice into 350 degrees oven and let it cook until rice is cook through, about 25 to 30 minutes. Spread peas on top. Let rice stand for 10 minutes, covered, before serving.

 

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Bataka nu Rasavalu Shaak

Bowl of Bataka nu Rasavalu Shak

Bataka nu Rasavalu Shaak

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Serves: 4

Sweet and Sour Potatoes
Ingredients
  • 2 medium size bataka (potatoes), raw or boiled, cut into ½ inch dice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • Pinch of asafetida
  • 1 dry red chili
  • 5 to 6 curry leaves, optional
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder or 1 minced jalapeno or serrano chili or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon dhana jeeru (spice blend of coriander and cumin powder)
  • 1 small piece (golf ball size) jaggery (Indian raw sugar) or 2 teaspoons sugar or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice or 1 teaspoon tamarind pulp or 1 teaspoon tomato paste
  • ½ cup water or as needed
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro, for garnish
Directions
  1. In a medium heavy bottomed pot heat oil on medium high heat. Add cumin and mustard seeds and let it sizzle. Lower the heat and add asafetida, red chili, curry leaves, turmeric, chili powder or green chili. Add potatoes, ½ cup of water for boiled potatoes and 1 cup of water for raw potatoes. Season with salt, mix everything and let the mixture come to boil on medium high heat. Let raw potatoes cook covered with lid for 10-12 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add dhana jeeru, jaggery or sugar and lemon juice or tamarind pulp or tomato paste. Let the potatoes heat for 7 to 10 minutes until the mixture thickens with all the spices. If the potato mixture looks dry add more water. Garnish with cilantro and serve warm with any Indian flat bread.
Notes
To make this recipe tastier, use 1 tablespoon more oil and make it spicier by adding more chili powder or more green chilies. You can also add eggplant or tomatoes in this recipe. You can cut down potato to one and add 2 tomatoes or half eggplant. With tomatoes, add it for the last 2 to 3 minutes. If you are making eggplant and potatoes, do not boil potatoes. Instead, follow the above recipe up to the adding water part and then cover the pot and let the vegetables cook until they are fork tender. You can also cook butternut squash same way, with cumin seeds only.

 

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Aloo Gobi

Aloo Gobi

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Serves: 6

Potato and Cauliflower Curry
Ingredients
  • 1 medium size gobi (cauliflower), cut into 1 inch florets
  • 1 medium size aloo (potato), cut into ½ inch cubes
  • 1 medium size onion, finely minced
  • 1 medium size tomato, minced
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and finely minced
  • 1 small jalapeno chili, finely minced
  • 4 tablespoons oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ⅛ teaspoon asafetida
  • ¾ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon dhana-jeeru (spice blend of ground coriander and cumin powder)
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro for garnish
Directions
  1. In a wok or a frying pan heat the oil on a medium high heat until shimmering. Add mustard seeds and let it sizzle. Add asafetida, onion and green chili. Add turmeric, chili powder, garam masala, dhana jeeru and sauté them with onion until onion is light golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add tomatoes and ginger and let them cook until the mixture is almost dry, 3 minutes.
  2. Add cauliflower and potatoes. Mix them well until vegetables are coated with oil and spices. Add salt, ½ cup water and mix it again. Cover the pan with lid and let the vegetables cook until fork tender, stirring from time to time, about 10 to 15 minutes. Just before serving garnish with cilantro. Serve warm with any type of Indian flat bread.
Notes
This is a basic recipe to cook any type of vegetables with gravy. You can cook the gravy with onions, tomato and spices and add any vegetables you like. You can also add paneer(Indian cottage cheese) with vegetables.
You can use food processor to mince onion, green chili (combined these two), tomato, and ginger (combined these two)).

 

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Chole

Quick Chole

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Serves: 2

Chickpea Curry
Ingredients
  • 1 16 oz. can of chickpeas
  • 1 large yellow or red onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 medium size tomato, roughly chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, cut into 3-4 pieces
  • 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, cut into 3-4 pieces
  • 1 jalapeno or serrano chili or to taste, cut into 3-4 pieces
  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon dhana-jeeru (spice blend of ground coriander and cumin)
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala
  • ½ teaspoon chole masala
  • 3 tablespoons canola or neutral oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro, for garnish
Directions
  1. In a food processor, process onion, garlic and green chili until it forms thick paste.
  2. Heat oil in a frying pan or a wok. Once oil is shimmering, add onion mixture, turmeric, dhana-jeeru, chili powder, garam masala, and sauté it until onion is light golden brown.
  3. Next process tomato and ginger in a food processor into a thick paste. Add little water if necessary to make it smooth. Add tomatoes and ginger mixture to pot and sauté until water from tomato evaporates.
  4. Add chick peas and salt. If gravy looks too dry add ¼ to ½ cup water. Cover pan or wok and let it simmer for 10 to 12 minutes. Uncover, add chole masala and let it simmer for another 3 to 4 minutes. Garnish with cilantro before serving. Serve warm with rice or any Indian flat bread. (Traditionally, chole are served with bhatoora (fried whole wheat flour bread).

 

 

Instant Pot Chole

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Serves: 2

Ingredients
  • 1 cup dry chickpeas
  • 1 large yellow or red onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 medium size tomato, roughly chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, cut into 3-4 pieces
  • 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, cut into 3-4 pieces
  • 1 jalapeno or serrano chili or to taste, cut into 3-4 pieces
  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon dhana-jeeru (spice blend of ground coriander and cumin)
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala
  • ½ teaspoon chole masala
  • 3 tablespoons canola or neutral oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro, for garnish
Directions
  1. Pick through chickpeas and soak them in two cups of water for 5 to 6 hours or until chickpeas are soft. (Soaking is optional but it will speed up cooking process)
  2. In a food processor, process onion, garlic and green chili until it forms thick paste.
  3. Set instant pot to sauté setting for 30 minutes. Once it is hot, heat oil in insert until shimmering. Add onion mixture, turmeric, dhana-jeeru, chili powder, garam masala, and sauté it until onion is light golden brown.
  4. Next process tomato and ginger in a food processor into a thick paste. Add little water if necessary to make it smooth. Add tomatoes and ginger mixture to pot and sauté until water from tomato evaporates.
  5. Add chick peas and salt. Cover chickpeas with water. Set instant pot to pressure cooker setting and cook for 40 minutes. For unsoaked chickpeas increase time to one hour. Once cooking time is over, release steam (you can also wait for pressure to release) and uncover pot. Add chole masala and let it simmer for another 3 to 4 minutes on sauté setting. Garnish with cilantro before serving. Serve warm with rice or any Indian flat bread. (Traditionally, chole are served with bhatoora (fried whole wheat flour bread).

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Chana

Bowl of Channa

Chana

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Serves: 4

Sweet and Sour Indian Chickpeas
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup chana, uncooked
  • Water as needed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ½ teaspoon sesame seeds
  • Pinch of asafoetida powder
  • 1 dry red chili (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon chickpea flour
  • ½ to 1 jalapeno or serrano chili, minced or finely chopped (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon red chili powder or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon dhana jeeru (spice blend of coriander and cumin powder)
  • 1 small piece (half the size of golf ball) of jaggery (Indian raw sugar) or 1 teaspoon sugar or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice or ½ teaspoon tamarind pulp
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro, for garnish
Directions
  1. Wash chana and soak into 1 to 1 ½ cup water for at least 6 to 8 hours or overnight in a medium soup pot or a Dutch oven or a pressure cooker.
  2. Season with salt and cook chana covered with enough water, about one hour or cook it in a pressure cooker according to manufacturer’s direction.
  3. In a separate medium soup pot or a Dutch oven, heat oil on medium high heat. Add mustard seeds and let it sizzle. Lower the heat and add sesame seeds and let it sizzle. Add chickpea flour and sauté for a second or two. Add asafoetida powder, red chili, turmeric and chili powder. Add channa with cooking water and green chili. Mix well. Chickpea flour will thicken the cooking water and turn into gravy like consistency. Add jaggery or sugar, dhana jeeru and lemon juice or tamarind pulp. Let chana cook for 8 to 10 minutes until all the flavors come together. If gravy is too thick add some water. Garnish with cilantro before serving. Serve warm with any flat Indian bread or rice.
Notes
You can also add 1 clove of minced garlic and 1 teaspoon of minced ginger in this recipe. In that case omit jaggery or sugar.

 

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Dal

Gujarati Dal

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Serves: 4

This sweet and sour split pigeon peas soup is part of Gujarati thali (plate) and served almost everyday. It is commonly served over rice.
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup oily or unoily toover dal (split pigeon peas), uncooked
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • Small (golf ball size) piece of jaggary or 3 teaspoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon dhana-jeeru (spice blend of ground coriander and cumin)
  • 1 teaspoon or to taste finely chopped or minced jalapeno or serrano chili
  • ½ teaspoon finely minced ginger
  • 1 medium tomato, diced
  • 1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro, for garnish
For Tempering (Vaghar):
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ⅛ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ⅛ teaspoon asafetida
  • 5 to 6 curry leaves
  • 1 whole dry red chili (optional)
  • Pinch of red chili powder (optional)
Directions
  1. Wash split pigeon peas few times. For oily dal make sure all the oil is washed off. Soak in about 1 ½ cups of water for 1 to 2 hours or until peas are soft in a medium size soup pot. (Soaking is optional but it will reduce cooking time).
  2. Add diced tomato. Cover with a lid and cook it with water on a medium heat until peas are very soft, about one hour. Once the dal is cooked, take off the heat.
  3. Add ½ cup of water and mix it with a whisk or an immersion blender until it has a consistency of slightly thick soup.
  4. Start heating the dal on medium heat. Add salt, jaggary, turmeric, dhana-jeeru, green chili and ginger. Stir dal and let it simmer for 10 to 15 minutes on low heat or a simmer burner.
  5. To cook dal in instant pot: Wash and soak dal in instant pot container. Set instant pot on pressure cook setting and cook dal for 20 minutes (for unsoaked dal increase time to 30 minutes). Once dal is cooked, release steam and follow step 3. Next, set instant pot to sauté and follow step 4. Reduce simmer time to 5 minutes.
  6. In a separate small heavy bottomed sauce pan, heat oil on medium high heat until shimmering. Add fenugreek seeds and let them sizzle. Lower the heat, add mustard and cumin seeds and let them sizzle. Add asafetida, curry leaves, red chili and chili powder. Pour oil with everything over dal. Mix it with dal, add lemon juice and let it simmer for two to three minutes. Garnish with cilantro before serving. Serve warm along with meal of Indian flat bread and vegetable, and over rice.
Notes
You can follow this same recipe for whole and split mung beans, split lentils and black-eyed peas mix with split pigeon peas. Do not use mustard and fenugreek seeds, instead, use only 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds.

 

 

 

Tarka Dal

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Serves: 4

Ingredients
  • ¾ cup uncooked masoor dal (split red lentils)
  • 1 medium size tomato, finely diced
  • ½ jalapeno chili or serrano chili, finely minced (optional)
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon dhana jeeru (spice blend of ground coriander and cumin)
  • 1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro, for garnish
  • 1 ½ cups of water
For Turka or Vaghar:
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ medium size yellow or red onion, finely diced
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 2-3 dry red chili
  • Pinch of red chili powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon garam masala
Directions
  1. Rinse dal and transfer to medium size soup pot. Add 1 ½ cups of water and let dal soak for 30 to 40 minutes. (Soaking is optional but it will speed up cooking).
  2. Add tomato, cover the pot with a lid, and cook dal for about 45 minutes or until dal is cooked.
  3. After dal is cooked, start heating dal on a medium heat. Add salt, turmeric, and dhana jeeru, green chili and ginger. Mix well. Let dal simmer for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. In a separate small soup pot or frying pan, heat oil on a medium heat. Add cumin seeds and let them sizzle. Add garlic, onion, garam masala and sauté them until onion is light golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add whole chili and chili powder and sauté it for one minute and pour everything on top of the dal. Stir the dal and let it simmer for one minute. Add lemon juice and let it simmer for two more minutes. Garnish with cilantro and serve over rice or as a soup.
  5. To cook dal in instant pot: Follow step one. Set instant pot on sauté setting for 20 minutes. Heat oil until shimmering. Add cumin seeds and let them sizzle. Add garlic, onion, green chili, garam masala and sauté them until onion is light golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add whole chili and chili powder and sauté it for one minute. Add tomato and ginger and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour dal over Turka and add salt, turmeric, dhana-jeeru and lemon juice. Add ½ cup water. Set instant pot to pressure cooker setting and cook dal for 20 minutes. (for unsoaked dal increase time to 30 minutes). Release steam and Garnish with cilantro and serve over rice or as a soup.

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Kadhi

Kadhi

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Serves: 4

(Yogurt and Chickpea Flour Soup) Even though this recipe does not have any legumes or grains, it is in this section because it is eaten in place of Dal. It is quintessential Gujarati recipe.
Ingredients
  • ½ cup yogurt (not Greek)
  • 2 tablespoons chickpea flour
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 3 to 4 teaspoons sugar or to taste, depending on sourness of yogurt
  • ½ japapeno or serrano chili, finely chopped or minced
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped or minced ginger
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro, for garnish
For Vaghar:
  • 2 teaspoons Ghee (clarified butter)
  • ¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • Pinch of asafetida
  • 2 to 3 cloves
  • Pinch of red chili powder (optional)
  • 1 red dry chili (optional)
  • 5 to 6 fresh curry leaves
Directions
  1. Mix yogurt and chickpea flour into a medium pot with a whisk. Add water while mixing until it has consistency of thin soup. Add next four ingredients. Cook it on a medium heat until it starts to boil over, stirring constantly. Watch it while it cooks otherwise yogurt and water will separate or it will boil over.
  2. Lower the heat and in a separate small soup pot, heat ghee on a medium heat until it shimmers, one minute. Add fenugreek seeds and let them sizzle. Lower the heat and add cumin seeds and let them sizzle. Add all the remaining ingredients. Pour ghee over kadhi and let it simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Garnish with cilantro and serve warm over rice or vegetable pulao.

 

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