Friday, November 30, 2007

Bengali Tomato Chutney for MEC

With so many events happening in the blogosphere right now, it so difficult to catch up with them. Sometimes, I decide upon a XYZ recipe for PQR event, and then I totally forget about the deadline...Phew!!
But, I make sure to submit atleast one entry to Sri's MEC event, as its so much fun to play around with what can be made with our own everyday Microwave. and ever since she started her MEC event, I am making an optimum use of my MW (unlike just reheating stuff..;) ). Thanks to her !!

What if, one fine day we are out of gas, and we have only MW to save our day!!

I made this tamatar chutney couple of hours ago with just 3 tomatoes as a pilot recipe, curious to know how does it taste with panchporan.
Guess what, 'S' and I liked it so much that we are planning to make a potful of this chutney with a big batch of big, ripe tomatoes this weekend! ..:))

We just loved the twist of panchporan powder...:)

So, here is the simple recipe of my 'Bengali Tomato Chutney' as my entry to Sri's MEC: Sidedish event!


Ingredients:

3 chopped tomatoes
1/2 tbsp chopped garlic
Salt to taste
1 tbsp Panchporan powder
1/2 tbsp Turmeric
1/2 tbsp Red Chilly powder
2 tbsp Oil
2 Red Chillies
1/2 tbsp Cumin seeds
1/2 tbsp Mustard seeds
a pinch of asafoetida
few Coriander leaves



How to make:

1. In a MW safe bowl, take some oil, garlic, Cumin seeds, mustard seeds, red chillies and asafoetida. MW for about 2 to 3 mins.
2. Then add chopped tomatoes. MW for about 7 mins untill tender.
3. Mash the cooked tomatoes with an eggbeater and season with salt, turmeric, red chilli powder and panchporan powder. Mix the contents well. MW it for about 5 to 6 mins.
4. Garnish with coriander leaves. I ate this chutney with hot rice and ghee. Amazing taste I must say!



Enjoii!!

~ Siri


Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Illusion or Magic?

Optical illusion:

....sounds pejorative, as if exposing a malfunction of the visual system. Rather, I view these phenomena as bringing out particular good adaptations of our visual system to standard viewing situations. These adaptations are »hard-wired« in our brains, and thus under some artificial manipulations can cause inappropriate interpretations of the visual scene. As Purkinje put it: "Illusions of the senses tell us the truth about perception."

--cited by Teuber, 1960.




Watch the '+' in the middle very closely. You will see the purple dots disappear then move your head slightly off center, the dots will reappear.
Again, if you try to concentrate more on the '+', after few seconds, you see only a single green color dot moving around the '+'.

This illusion was designed by Jeremy L Hinton of Bristol, UK, and this illusion - with a lot more explanation and many other illusions as well - can be found at the web site of Michael Bach.

Note: Don’t distress yourself if you don’t see the effect described, even if trying carefully. For many illusions, there is a small percentage of people with perfectly normal vision who just don’t see it, for reasons currently unknown!

Related Links:

Ambiguous Perception
Illusions and Paradoxes - Seeing is Believing?


Monday, November 26, 2007

Besan ki Sabzi, Tadka Dal, Cabbage Raita for RCI: Bihar

....Rich in its historical traditions and ancient splendor, the culturally rich Bihar has derived its name from “Vihar”. It was called the land of “Viharas” for its having a good number of recreational sites where people enjoyed activities in serene surroundings by the side of ponds and lakes. Endowed with a rich cultural and religious heritage, Bihar was a seat of power of the vast and powerful Magadh Empire, whose might had checked further onslaught of Alexander the Great. Bihar was cradle of civilization and nerve centre of religious activities of Hindu, Boudh, Jain, Sikh and Islam....

Bihari cuisine is predominantly vegetarian with bhaats, dals, subzis, chokhas and tarkaris. So, for Sangeeta's RCI: Bihar event, I managed to whip up couple of recipes from a typical Bihari Cuisine - Besan (Gatte) ki Sabzi, Tadka Dal and Cabbage Raita. This was my second attempt to make Gattes - which I am happy to say came out delish and yummy! Phew!!

All these three recipes were made at different times, So here is a virtual Bihari Thali for all of u ...:))



Besan (Gatte) ki Sabzi
-----------------------------------

Adapted from: here

Ingredients:

For gattes:

1 cup Besan (Chickpea flour)
Salt
1 tbsp Red Chilli powder
2 Green Chillies
1 tbsp Coriander powder

For Gravy:

1 chopped Tomato
1 medium Onion chopped
Salt - to taste
1 tbsp RedChilli powder
3 tbsp Yogurt
1 tbsp Cumin seeds
1 tbsp Mustard seeds
2 Red Chillies
1/2 tbsp Ginger Garlic paste
2 tbsp Vegetable Oil
a pinch of Asafoetida
few Curry leaves
Water


Preparation:

1. Mix besan, chopped green chillies, salt, red chili powder, oil with some water.
2. Make kabab shaped gattes out of the besan dough.
3. Put them into boiling water and boil for 10 minutes.
4. Take them out the water and cut the besan rounds into small pieces. Keep aside.
5. Now, to prepare the gravy, heat oil in a skillet and then add cumin, mustard seeds with a pinch of Asafoetida. Then add ginger garlic paste with onions, tomatoes, salt, turmeric, curry leaves, red chilli powder and garam masala. Add water if needed. Cook for couple of minutes.
6. Add yogurt and stir the contents well.
7. Finally, put the gattes to the gravy. Slow cook for about 10 minutes.
8. Serve hot with rice or roti.

Tadka Daal
---------------

To make Tadka Daal:

Cook 1 cup of Toor dal. In a skillet, heat some oil, add urad dal, mustard, cumin seeds, hing with few red chillies. Add garlic and curry leaves. Finally add the cooked toor dal and season with salt, turmeric and red chilli powder. This simple dal is such an awesome comfort food in these long, chilly nights. Isn't it!



Cabbage Raita
-------------------

Cabbage Raita is one of our favorites, especially when we are bored of having plain yogurt. One can substitute Snake Gourd instead of cabbage.

To make this simple raita: Microwave 2 cups cut cabbage with little water for about 7 minutes until its not completely mushy. Add 1 cup yougurt and a normal tadka (oil + mustard seeds + urad + cumin + curry leaves + green chillies ) to it. Mix the contents well. Thats it, a simple yet yummy cabbage raita is ready to serve.



Hope you all enjoied these recipes. Take care and Have a great weekend!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Thanksgiving Meal: Baked Broccoli Rice Supreme, and Stuffed Bell Peppers

Be thankful for what you have,
You'll end up having more,
If you concentrate on what you don't have,
You will never, ever have enough!

~ Anonymous


Though we don't celebrate Thanksgiving, I managed to make a hearty meal for 'S' and me - with 'Thanksgiving' as my pretext. I had this yummy 'BAKED BROCCOLI RICE SUPREME' adapted from this interesting article , on my to-do list from a very long time. Also, I made some yummy 'Stuffed Bell Peppers' as a side dish. It was an awesome combo and we loved it !! Yumm-O !



Off these go to Meeta's 'Monthly Mingle: Traditional Feasts' and Kelli's 'Giving Thanks' Events.

Baked Broccoli Rice Supreme
-------------------------------------

Ingredients:

2 cups cooked Brown rice ( You can use White rice too! )
4 cups chopped Broccoli
1 tbsp Oil
2 or 3 Garlic cloves
2 or 3 Green chilies
1 tbsp Basil
1 tbsp Sage
1 tbsp fresh Oregano
1 cup grated Cheddar cheese
Salt & Pepper



Preparation:

1. Heat oil in a pan and sauté garlic cloves and chopped green chilies.
2. Add broccoli with basil, oregano and sage. Season with salt & pepper. After a quick stir-fry remove it from heat.
3. In baking pan layer one cup rice with two cups of stir fry broccoli and ½ cup cheese. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Cover it with foil and bake at 325 degrees for 10 minutes. Serve hot.

My version has Sage, being a classic Thanksgiving herb!

Stuffed Bell Peppers
----------------------------

Ingredients:

2 big Bell Peppers
PAM spray or 2 tbsp oil

for the filling:

2 medium Potatoes ( boiled and mashed)
1 chopped Onion
1 chopped Tomato
2 or 3 cloves of garlic ( chopped)
1 tbsp Red Paprika ( or Red chilli powder)
Salt - to taste
1/2 tbsp Turmeric
1 tbsp Garam Masala
1 tbsp Cumin seeds
Parmesan Cheese

Preparation:

1. Preheat the oven at 375 C
2. Cut the top of the bell pepper and scrape out the inside carefully.
3. Apply a drop of oil on the cut peppers and keep aside.
4. For the filling, saute onions, garlic, tomatoes in oil for few minutes and then add potatoes with rest of the ingredients. Mix the contents well and cook for about 5 to 7 minutes.
5. Fill this stuffing into the Bell Peppers and bake them in the oven for about 45 minutes until the Peppers become tender.
6. Sprinkle some grated Parmesan cheese and let it bake for few more minutes.
7. Serve Hot !!

I take this opportunity to Thank everybody in my blogging fraternity who always encouraged me, appreciated all my recipes with lots of love and inspired to experiment more in my kitchen! Thank You dearies!




Off this also goes to Cate's ARF:Tuesday Event...:)

Check out these Thanksgiving goodies too!

Ashaji's Gobble Gobble! Happy Thanksgiving Folks!
Mansi's Traditional Pecan Pie
Anna's Thanksgiving Pumpkin Pie
Nupur's Mashes Sweet Potatoes
Meeta's Sweet Potato Flan

Goodbye Thanksgiving 2007!! .... cya next year..:DD

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Hyderabadi Double ka Meetha ( Bread Pudding with Nuts and Raisins)


[Updated] Click here for an updated version of this delectable Hyderabadi favorite. 

'S' is a true "Connoisseur of Desserts". When I asked him, whats your favorite dessert? He immediately said 'Double Ka Meetha'. Indeed, this is a Hyderabadi classic dessert and our personal favorite too !! Off this goes to Hima's WYF - Dessert event.


Hyderabad is known for its strong Moghalai influence to hot n spicy coastal Andhra dishes. and not to forget the well known ubiquitous Irani Hotels of Old Hyderabad, serving thousands of cups of tea everyday.
Talking of Hyderabadi desserts, one first gets reminded of our well-known Double-ka-Meetha (a bread and raisin pudding), Qubani-ka-meetha (stewed apricot dessert), Ande-ka-Piyosi (made with eggs, mild, almonds and purified butter), Badam-ki-jhab and Dil-e-Firdaus ( a rich, milk-based sweet) just to mention a few! Wow, the utter mention of these names take me back to my childhood days...:)
So, to relive those moments, I decided to make Double-ka-Meetha last weekend, which came out.. yummy and soft...:D


Ingredients:

White bread - 6 slices
Milk -1 1/2 cups
Sugar - 1 cup
Water -1/4cup (for sugar syrup)
Heavy Cream - 1/2 cup
Butter/Ghee - 2 tbsp
Raisins - 2 tbsp
Peacons - 2 tbsp
Cardamom -1/4 tsp

Preparation:

1. Roast the bread slices (edges cut off if desired) in butter until they turn brown on both sides. Arrange them in a baking pan or any flat pan.
2. Mix sugar and water in a sauce pan. Heat and make sugar syrup out of it.
3. Boil milk with cardamom powder for few minutes. Keep aside.
4. Now, roast the raisins and peacons in butter and sprinkle over the bread slices.
5. Then pour sugar syrup, heavy cream and milk evenly over bread slices.
6. Serve it chilled or hot... Its just irresistible until the last morsel...:))



Monday, November 19, 2007

Dal Dhokadi : JFI - Toordal

When Linda of Out of the Garden announced her JFI: Toor Dal event, I thought of making something which I never made before.
Toor Dal, being a staple food in our household is used mainly in various dals, sambhar or rasam. But, I never made a gravy-type-curry out of Toor dal. 




'Dal Dhokadi' is basically a vegetarian Gujarati dish made out of toor dal and rotis. Yes, Rotis cut into small pieces and dipped into the gravy of toor dal. Interesting huh!. Here is my version of a tried, tested and tasted Dal Dhokadi.

Ingredients:

150 grams Toor Dal,
100 grams wheat flour,
3 green chilies
1 medium chopped Onion
50 grams Groundnuts
25 grams Cashewnuts
1 tbsp. Turmeric powder
1 tbsp. Mustard seeds
2 chopped Tomatoes
1 tbsp. Tamarind
Salt - to taste
1 tbsp Garam masala,
1/2 tbsp Cumin seeds
2 tbsp Butter/Ghee
2 tbsp Red chili powder
a pinch of Asafetida
Water



Preparation:

1. Knead wheat flour, salt, turmeric , red chilli powder and oil into roti like consistency with little water. Make rotis and cut into small pieces.
2. Wash toor dal and pressure cook for 2 whistles with two drops of oil.
3. Heat butter in a skillet and add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, chopped onion, curry leaves, green chillies and Asafetida. Cook until onion turn golden brown.
4. Now, add tomatoes, toor dal, tamarind pulp, turmeric, salt, groundnuts, cashewnuts , garam masala with 2 cups of water. Mix the contents well and Cook for few minutes.
5. Finally, add roti pieces and cook for 5 to 6 minutes.
6. Serve with hot rice.

This simple curry tasted divine and surprised me with its exceptional flavor.



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Sunday, November 18, 2007

I am 'tagged' for another Meme !!

Time for a Meme!!

I am tagged for another Meme - '7 Random things about Urself' by Linda . Wondering whats was the first one? It was 'Nightmare in the Kitchen' , tagged by dear Ashaji.


So, here I go with some rules first....

Rules:

1. Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 random and/or wierd things about yourself.
3. Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
4. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

Some weird things about me..:)..

1. I am obsessed about stuff toys especially teddy bears (though I have many others like Pooh, Mickey, Donald - U name it, I have it). and I name each one of them.

2. I love the sound of Flute - very soothing and relaxing.

3. I used to have pen friends from Hawaii, UK ( 5 in total), when I was back in India. They were all girls of my age and we used to share many sweet things about our culture, family traditions, friends etc through our letters.

4. I used to hate 'Roses' until couple of years ago and never felt they were romantic.

5. I love to have spectacles, but failed to get one, though tried very hard when I was a child.

6. I can't bear the presence of a swarm of bees or a group of ants. I feel like they are crawling on me.

7. I don't know how to drive a car!

Now time for tagging....

Ashaji of Foodie'shope
Lathamma of The Yum Blog
Eden of Fussy.org
Lotus of Sarcastic Mom
Dhivi of DK's Culinary Bazaar
Frances of Blogjem
Aimee of Greeblemonkey

Paneer Achari ( Indian Cottage Cheese - Spiced Up !)

Ok, enough of non-foodie posts, taking up the NaBloPoMo challenge doesn't mean that, I disrupt my culinary posts. So, here I am with some spiced up Indian Cottage Cheese (Paneer Achari) specially for Sunita's Think:Spice - Ginger event.




Today, I was in a mood to have lots and lots of Paneer...:).. At times, it happens rite when we feel like having something desperately.... reason hmmmmm "unknown!"... its one such day..!!
So, as usual, I was blog hoping for one such recipe, when I stumbled upon this "Paneer Achari" recipe and the amazing fact is that I have all the stuff needed in my pantry which is typically not the case with me...:)...Here is the recipe....



Ingredients:

1 cup Paneer cubes (Indian Cottage Cheese)
6-7 tbsp of Yogurt
1/2 medium lemon

For Achari paste:

1 tbsp Coriander powder
1/4 tbsp mustard powder
1/2 tbsp Cumin powder
3-4 pinches of Hing (Asafetida)
1/2 tbsp Ginger paste
Salt - to taste
2 Green Chillies
1/2 tbsp Garam masala
1/2 tbsp Fenugreek powder
1/2 tbsp Turmeric
1/2 tbsp Chilli powder
2 tbsp Olive Oil ( or any vegetable oil)

Its not necessary to take the exact amounts of the spices. eyeballing them would do.

How to make:

1. Grind all the ingredients listed for Achari paste with very little water.
2. Mix the yogurt, lemon juice to achari paste.
3. Now, add the paneer cubes to the paste such that they are coated properly. Marinate them for a while if desired.
4. In a pan, take some oil, add coated paneer cubes and cook for 7 to 8 minutes.
5. Garnish with coriander and Serve hot with rice or rotis.


Note: Any vegetable like cauliflower, eggplant can be used instead of Paneer.

Seriously, its the yummiest Paneer dish I ever had - other than Paneer Butter Masala Ofcourse.

Enjoii..:D

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Her Vs Him

HER DIARY

I asked him what was wrong - he said, "Nothing."
I asked him if it was my fault that he was upset. He
said it had nothing to do with me and not to worry.

On the way home, I told him that I loved him, but he
simply smiled and kept driving.

I can't explain his behavior; I don't know why he
didn't say, "I love you too."

When we got home, I felt as if I had lost him, as if
he wanted nothing to do with me anymore.

He just sat there and watched TV; he seemed distant
and absent.

Finally, I decided to go to bed. About 10 minutes
later he came to bed.

I decided that I could not take it anymore, so I
decided to confront him with the situation but he had fallen asleep.
I started crying and cried until I fell asleep.
I do not know what to do. I'm almost sure that his thoughts are with
someone else.

My life is a disaster.












HIS DIARY
















Today India lost the cricket match again. DAMM IT.



Moral of the story is that :

"When everything comes in your way you're in the wrong lane.”

This is what happens with most of the girls and esp with me. I tend to think a lot and over-react most of the times.
So, next time will try to chill and relax , take things at ease .......:)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Vegetable Pilau served with Curried Idaho Potatoes

November 14th is observed as 'World Diabetes Day' by International Diabetes Federation (IDF) - to raise awareness about diabetes and its complications around the world. Over 240 million people are suffering from diabetes worldwide and IDF predicts that in 20 years the number will be 380 million. Early education about type 1 and type 2 diabetes helps in reducing the risk of millions of lives. Now, Its time to make a difference !!

...The theme of this year's 'World Diabetes Day' campaign is Diabetes in Children and Adolescents. Diabetes is one of the most common chronic diseases of childhood. It can strike children at any age, including pre-school children and even toddlers. Yet diabetes in children is often diagnosed late, when the child has diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), or it is misdiagnosed completely. In many parts of the world, insulin, the main life-saving medication that children with diabetes need to survive, is not available (or is available but remains inaccessible for reasons of economy, geography or constraints on supply). As a consequence, many children die of diabetes, particularly in low and middle-income countries. Those closest to the child - family, school staff, family doctor - may not be aware of the ominous signs. The World Diabetes Day 2007 and 2008 campaigns set out to challenge this and firmly establish the message that ‘no child should die of diabetes'....
- A message from International Diabetes Federation (IDF)

Now, the question is "What can I eat if I am diagnosed of Diabetes?". The answer according to American Diabetic Association - " Eat anything you like, as long as the blood glucose is under control and you fit in into your daily meal plan with some regular exercise !!". :)
I made few such yummy recipes (with respective nutritional values and diabetic exchanges) which can be included in your everyday meal. and with some careful planning, "All food can fit into yours.."..:)))

Vegetable Pilau served with Curried Idaho Potatoes

Vegetable Pilau
--------------------

Ingredients:

1 cup Long grain rice (uncooked)
1 Onion (finely chopped)
1 Green Bell Pepper ( We can also add Red/Yellow Pepper to make it more colorful)
1 Tomato (finely chopped)
2 Green Chillies
1 tbsp Cumin seeds
1/2 tbsp Chilli powder
Salt - to taste
1/2 tbsp Biryani Pulao Masala/Garam Masala
1 tbsp Vegetable Oil
1/4 tbsp Cayenne Pepper
Water - to cook rice


Preparation:

In a large skillet, heat some oil, add onion and. Sauté for few minutes, or until onion is golden brown. Now, add remaining ingredients except rice, Mix well and cook for 5 minute. Then, finally add rice. Cover and simmer until rice is properly cooked. I garnished it with some spring onions. Enjoii !!

Nutritional Values: Per Serving: 200 Cal
2g Fat, 39g Carb
3g Fiber, 284mg Sodium
0mg Cholesterol, 4g Protein

Diabetic Exchanges:

2 Bread
2-1/2 Vegetable
1/2 Fat.

Curry Roasted Idaho Potato Wedges
---------------------------------------------------

Ingredients:

2 Large Idaho Potatoes ( or any baking variety)
1 tbsp Oil
1 tbsp Curry powder
Salt & Pepper
1/4 tbsp turmeric


Preparation:

Preheat Oven to 450F. In a bowl, take all the ingredients listed below except potatoes and mix well. Cut the potatoes into wedges (with skin if desired). Marinate them with the mixture of curry powder and keep aside for few minutes. Take a baking tray and spray some PAM (or apply some oil) at the bottom. Arrange these potato wedges and bake for 1 hour or until they turn golden brown and crisp; Switching trays (moving lower tray to upper position) after every 30 minutes. Serve hot.

Nutritional Values:
261 calories, 7 g fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 122 mg sodium, 4 g protein, 47 g carbohydrates



----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
November 14th is also Chacha Nehru's Birthday which is celebrated as 'Children's Day' back in India as a tribute to his immense love for children.
Wishing All my readers a very Happy Children's Day..:))

Wanna donate some Rice grains to needy people on this day:
Then play a simple vocabulary game and donate 10 grains of rice for every correct word at FreeRice.com. Thanks to Sheela, as I came to know about freerice through her blog.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Mixed Veggies dipped in Tomato Sauce

It is one such cold, chilly evening when my tummy wanted to have a big bowl of hot, simmering mixed vegetable curry for dinner, but with a twist of tomato. As you wish my 'aaka' (master) said my heart, and here it is - " Mixed Veggies dipped in Tomato Sauce".


There is something very soothing and comforting about having a big heap of hot rice and a pot of creamy vegetable curry on a cold, chilly and gloomy winter night. Isn't it !!
and today I am in a mood of experimenting with some known flavors like veggies and spaghetti sauce. Wondering where this spaghetti sauce came from... hmmmmm.. thats the secret of the tomato sauce of my version of mixed veggie curry. Read on to find out how...!!
I promised Suganya of 'Tasty Palettes' to make something exclusively for her 'Vegan Ventures' event, November being a Vegan Month. Forwarding this recipe to you dear and will try to make more in coming days..:)


Ingredients:

1. Veggies whatever u can find - I used cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, beans, potato
2. 1 big Tomato (chopped)
3. 1 medium Onion ( finely chopped)
4. 1/2 cup spaghetti sauce ( or tomato puree will do !!)
5. Salt - to taste
6. 1/2 tbsp Chilli powder
7. 1 tbsp Oil
8. 1/2 tbsp Garam Masala ( for that Indian kick !!)
9. Water - if needed

How to make:

1. HEAT oil in a skillet, add finely chopped onion and fry until golden brown.
2. ADD tomatoes, par-boiled veggies and mix well. Cook for few minutes.
3. POUR a good amount of spagetti sauce over the veggies. Add salt, chilli powder, and garam masala one by one.


4. MIX the content well. Cook for 7 to 10 mins until the veggies are nicely dipped into the tomato sauce and soaked with its flavors...:)
5. GARNISH with coriander leaves or a big dollop of cream and ENJOI with hot rice or as it is..:DD

Another Look....


Also sending this to Sra's 'Grindless Gravies' Event..:))

A Big Thank You for all you wonderful fellow bloggers who visited my blog often - as it crossed a 10,000 visitors mark with this post. Thank You dearies..:DD
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Sunday, November 11, 2007

Can This Recipe Be Saved Contest - 'Thai Rice and Bean Croquettes'

"Can This Recipe Be Saved Contest" is a one-of-kind event initiated by Susan of 'FatFree Vegan Kitchen' where she asked us to use our creativity and save her 'Thai Croquettes' which were originally made by pumpkin...:)

.... and here in my version, I made use of Red Kidney Beans and Rice instead of pumpkin and also made few additions to satiate my tastebuds.
Thanks to Nupur, as I got to know about such an event from her post where she made the some yummy "Thai Eggplant Croquettes."


Thai Style Red Bean and Rice Croquettes
-----------------------------------------------------

Ingredients:

1/2 cup pre-cooked sliced beans
1 cup Red Kidney Beans ( I used canned!!)
1/2 cup (White/Brown) Rice ( I used White..)
3 tbsp Soya Sauce
1 tbsp Thai Red Curry paste
1/2 medium Onion - finely chopped
Salt - to taste
1/4 tbsp BlackPepper
2 tbsp Cornflour
1 tbsp flax seed
1 tbsp Lemon Zest ( I used 1 tbsp of lemon juice..)
1/2 tbsp sugar (optional)
Oil - to shallow fry

Preparation:

1. Place the green beans, Red kidney beans and half the rice into a food processor and pulse to chop coarsely (do not puree!).If you have a small processor, you may have to do this in batches. Pour into a bowl and add all remaining ingredients.
2. Mix the contents well. Add very little water if needed.
3. Make small cylindrical shaped patties (or any shape) and shallow fry both the sides on a hot skillet with little oil. Instead, we can even bake in the oven at 425F.
4. Serve with Susan's yummy Thai Sweet and Sour Dipping Sauce.
I served these with my favorite tomato ketchup instead...:)

November is 'Vegan Month of Food' and dear Suganya is organising an one-off event - "Vegan Ventures".
Off these 'Thai Rice and Bean Croquettes' go to Suganya's event too.
Click here to find out who all are participating in 'VeganMoFo' Event.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Fit 'n' Fine Meals # 2 - Soya Eggplant Moussaka

'Moussaka' means 'moistened' and 'Vegetable Moussaka' is a traditional Greek dish made with lots of vegetables. I changed few ingredients from the original recipe - soya chunks instead of chickpeas to make it more nutritious and healthy. It is also a nice winter comfort food.


This dish is adapted from "Vegeterian - the best ever recipe collection" by Linda Fraser. It has an awesome collection of vegetarian recipes neatly sub-categorized as soups, salads, main course and side dishes. I got to know about this book when I happen to visit my friend, then I quickly noted down some nice recipes to experiment in my kitchen...:D.



Soya Eggplant Moussaka
--------------------------------

Ingredients:

1 medium Eggplant
2 Tomatoes
2 tbsp olive oil or PAM spray
1 cup Spaghetti sauce or tomato puree
1 Onion
1 tbsp chopped green chillies
1 Green Bell Pepper
1 cup toor dal (or any other lentils)
1 tbsp chopped Garlic
1 Bayleaf
200g Soya chuks
3 tbsp of chopped coriander
3 tbsp of low-fat yogurt
1 Egg
3 cups Vegetable stock
1/2 tbsp Garam Masala
1 tbsp Corinader powder
Salt and pepper
Parmesan cheese (optional)

Step-by-Step Preparation:

1. Sprinkle the eggplant pieces with salt and place in a bowl. Cover and place a weight on top. Let it sit for atleast 30mins, to allow the bitter juices to be extracted.


2. In a pan, boil vegetable stock, lentils and bay leaf, cover and bring to boil and simmer for about 20mins until the lentils are tender but not mushy. Drain thoroughly and keep aside.



3. Soak the soya chunks in warm water for about 5 minutes or until they become soft.

4. Heat little oil in a skillet, add chopped garlic, boiled lentils, Soya chunks, tomatoes, chopped onions, spaghetti sauce(or tomato puree), coriander powder, garam masala and little water. Boil and cover and simmer for 10min. Stir occasionally and keep aside.

5. Preheat oven for 350F.

6. Rinse the Eggplants slices, drain and pat dry. Heat remaining oil in a pan and lightly fry the slices in batches for 4 mins, turning once so both sides are browned on low heat.

7. Arrange a layer of eggplant slices in the bottom of a shallow, oven proof dish or roasting pan then spoon a layer of soya mixture over the top. Continue layers until all the eggplant slices and lentil mixture is used up.



8. If desired, sprinkle some grated Parmesan cheese.

9. Now, beat the low-fat yogurt, egg and salt and pepper together and pour the mixture over the vegetables.



10. Bake for about 45 minutes or until the topping is golden brown and bubbling.



11. Squeeze some fresh lemon juice for a nice tangy taste and garnish with coriander. Serve immediately. This main course dish usually served with warm fresh bread for a hearty and satisfying meal...:)



Its my pleasure to send this recipe to Cate's ARF/5-A-Day Event.
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