Braised Wings

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You Need:

  • 7 to 8 Chicken Wings.
  • 2 finely chopped green chilies.
  • A bunch of chopped coriander.
  • A teaspoon of garlic paste.
  • Juice of two lemons.
  • Two tablespoons of Honey.
  • Salt and Pepper.

Heat oil till its shimmering. Add chicken wings. Sprinkle salt.

Now no matter how hard you try, there will be some moisture on these. If you like to spend time in clean up, let them cook on the high heat spluttering away for 5 mins. However, lazy bones like me can simply cover them with a lid and let them cook on high heat for 3-4 mins. This will help contain the splatter and the trade off is acceptable for most of us.

Stir well and keep alternating between high and medium heat till the chicken is almost cooked. The skin on the wings, kind of protects them from overcooking. So relax. They will still taste damn good and not become chewy. Move the wings to the side and in the oil collected at the base add the coriander, garlic paste and chilly. When the garlic’s raw smell is gone. Mix well. Add the lemon juice and honey.

Cook on high till its drying up. Sprinkle pepper to speed up the process.

Serve with a garnish of fresh coriander.

Stir Fried Mustard Leaves

You need:

  • Mustard Leaves.
  • Bathua Leaves. Approximately half the quantity of the Mustard leaves.
  • A whole radish with it’s leaves.
  • An onion, sliced.
  • Two green chillies.
  • A couple of cloves of garlic, chopped.
  • A heaped tablespoon of ghee.
  • Two tablespoons of mustard oil.

Fry the onion, garlic, green chillies and radish root in mustard oil. Chop all the greens and add to the pan. Make them into a doughnut shape. This will cause the moisture they release to pool in the middle. The leaves will not turn soggy and will also retain their color. When no more water is getting released add the ghee. Cook for another minute or two.

Season with salt and pepper.

Enjoy with a piece of jaggery.

Sour Bottle Gourd

Bottle Gourd

I wanted to do something wacky and this crazy idea came up. It’s quirky but tastes like fun.

You need:

  • A bottle gourd sliced into thin matchsticks.
  • Juice of a lemon.
  • A couple of peanuts.
  • Coconut oil about 2 tablespoons.
  • Finely chopped Coriander or Dill.
  • Spice mix or just red chilly powder.

Marinate the bottle gourd sticks in lemon juice for at least ten mins. Fry the peanuts in coconut oil. Add the bottle gourd. Cook on low to medium heat for about seven minutes. When the bottle gourd no longer has a raw taste add the chopped greens.

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Mix well and dry it up.

Season with salt and any spice mix.

Soul Kadhi

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I absolutely love curd and am mad about greens. What better soul food than combining these together.

You Need:

  • Finely chopped Greens. Any greens. You can use spinach, fenugreek or even sorrel. I used Malabar Spinach.
  • Green chilies as per taste, finely chopped.
  • Cumin
  • Coriander seeds
  • 250 gms of Curd whisked with a teaspoon or two of besan flour.
  • Mustard oil.

Heat mustard oil. When its nice and hot, add the cumin and coriander seeds. When they crackle, add the green chilies followed by the chopped greens. Cook on high heat. Keep stirring. When there is no more water being released by the greens, switch off the stove. Immediately add the whisked curd. Mix and let it rest for some 5-10 mins.

No need of salt. When whisking curd with besan, use a blender to avoid any lumps.

You can also use this as a dip with cucumbers, zucchini, khakra or chips.

Roasted Chicken and Aubergine

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You Need:

  • A couple of pieces of chicken preferably with skin on.
  • A large aubergine, cut into large pieces.
  • A carrot. Skip this if you are into the Keto Diet.
  • A spring onion. The bulbs kept whole, the leaf chopped into 1 cm pieces.
  • Olive Oil.
  • Pepper and any dry seasoning powders or herbs.

Layer the baking dish with olive oil, aubergine, carrot, spring onions bulbs. Cover with the chopped spring onion leaves. Place chicken on top of this green bed.

Sprinkle salt, pepper and seasoning.

Preheated oven at 210 C. Roast at 210C for 20 mins. Then continue baking at 190C for 40 mins. Remove chicken from the pan. Mix vegetables and you will find there is a lot of water collected. Broil with only top heat set at a good 250C for about 5 mins or so.

Enjoy with a cucumber-pomegranate-greek yogurt salad.

Pomfret Curry (Khatta / Sour)

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You Need:

  • A Pomfret approximately 700 gms, cut into slices.
  • 2 Medium Onions finely diced.
  • 6 Tomatoes, chopped. If texture is very important, blanch and peel off the skin.
  • 2 Green Chilies.
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin.
  • 1 teaspoon of ginger garlic paste.
  • 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric.
  • 2 teaspoons of coriander powder.
  • A marble sized ball of tamarind.
  • A fistful of curry leaves.
  • A bunch of coriander leaves and stems, finely chopped.

Heat oil. Saute till tender the onions along with green chilies, curry leaves and cumin. Add the tomatoes and cook on low to medium heat. Sprinkle salt as soon as you add the tomatoes. This will hasten their cooking. When the tomatoes have fully softened, add the turmeric powder, coriander powder and ginger garlic paste. Mix well and keep it at low heat. Add the coriander leaves.

In a microwave safe bowl take about 300 ml of water. Place the tamarind ball in it and nuke it for a minute. Using a spoon mash the tamarind to dissolve it. Strain out the tamarind and  add this water to the tomatoes. When this gets to a boil, carefully place the fish pieces in it. The pieces must be fully immersed. Cook covered on low heat for approximately 15 mins or the fish is cooked.

Switch off the stove but do not open for another 10 mins.

Enjoy with rice or dosa’s.

Macaroni in Roux with Vegetables

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I was out shopping with my kids, when my son spotted Broccoli and decided that dinner was going to be Pasta.

You Need:

  • 250 gms of Pasta. Follow instruction and cook them in salted water. Save 100 ml of this starchy water for later.
  • 5-6 finely sliced garlic cloves.
  • 200 grams of button mushrooms, chopped up.
  • 2 capsicums, chopped up.
  • 200 grams of Broccoli. Separate the florets. Peel the stem. Discard the rough exterior. Chop into small pieces the soft stem inside it.
  • 30 grams of butter.
  • 30 grams of flour. You can use either Maida or Whole Wheat.
  • 200 ml of milk.
  • Any seasoning or dry herbs.

Heat oil in a large pan. Add the garlic and cook till the raw edge is gone. Saute the mushrooms, capsicum and chopped broccoli stem. Do this on high heat. Do not let them boil in the water they are releasing. The mushrooms will rapidly shrink down to approximately half the original volume. Add the broccoli florets. Cook on medium heat. Watch the broccoli as they start changing their color. They will suddenly start becoming bright green. When you feel they are really bright, eat one of them. If its cooked. You are done. Do NOT overcook them. The color of the broccoli is their cue and respect it. Overcooked broccoli tastes horrible and is one of the main reasons why most people hate it.

Remove all the vegetables. In the same pan add the butter. Use medium to low heat. When the butter has fully melted, add the flour. Whisk it. Keep on whisking it. When the raw smell is gone start dribbling the milk into this. Keep whisking and don’t add more than 10-20 ml at a time. This will prevent the formation of lumps. Be patient as the rewards are worth it. When all the milk has been added and there are no lumps, you start adding the half cup of pasta starch water. Use the same technique of dribbling in the liquid while constantly whisking.

Season with salt and any herbs you like. Add the vegetables and the macaroni. Cook on high heat for about 2-3 mins When the consistency is just right, switch off the stove and leave it covered for about 10 mins. This will allow the pasta to absorb the sauce.

Enjoy.