Thursday, 21 June 2018

TOFU BHURJI STUFFED PARATHA





Its heavy downpour here which is not a big news either.... It rains here throughout the year... more between October and February.... The good news is that my Boris / Dal Vadi / Sun Dried Lentil Balls sustained the rain and did not dampen to die. India cannot think of making bori except for winters. I remember the now 90 year old veteran used to make them in bulk and store for the entire year.... Her terrace was filled with bori, pickle and what? "sheyoi".... it is made from a special variety of rice paste which she strained through a "jali" .... a special kind of strainer and dried under the sun.... once dried it was stored and fried to be served alongside the evening tea.... No shops in Kolkata sold it.... since we lived for 19 years in a rented home, our mother did not have the liberty to use the terrace! Now, what did I discover last month? A lady called Shalini Vyas, who is the owner of a Youtube Channel shared the recipe of it! I got so excited that I commented... Shalini... I saw my grandma doing it! This girl is among the very few strangers whose friend's request I accepted.... I like her channel which has recipes with very simple ingredients...... Its Shalini's Kitchen.... We do not stop by each other, neither did she like my page but I subscribed to her Channel... I am no Shylock so do not calculate at all times... I do not accept all requests, I am not a people pleaser either who will go and respond to posts I dislike or do not find necessary to prove my  generosity... I love my near blind eyes way bit and most of the time it is "what meets my eyes".... one thing I severely oppose to is any attempt to drag me into any kind of groups.... What did I start with? Well the weather here... it is dry and hence my "boris" saw themselves blooming in the wok! The senior of the two morons did not even appraise, the junior too is not bothered... all appraisal comes from Ipsita-Soumya... off course the maximum number of food containers will visit their home, they definitely travel back filled.... I always say skip the later part... I find pleasure cooking for the mass. Appraisal comes from one Sanak Chottopadhay too ... the excellent cook and human being I often talk about ... he occupies a major part of the heart.... an extremely honest gentleman... whose life is dedicated to his office, home and his only daughter's education and career.... he does not even think of his own pleasure... anyway more of him on a salmon and mutton post! Coming to my men.... given their indifference to my cooking spree and my blog.... I should not have sweated on TOFU BHURJI STUFFED PARATHA yesterday night .... you know I am miserable with stuffed parathas. Someone came home at 10:30 pm at night, yet I did! One cannot expect the best of both worlds... the wife does not wish to see him stagnate at one place, she told you all earlier that her demands are different.... the reason why she is extremely unhappy with her brother.... who is the reason for her stress-free life though ... the very responsible son loves paratha... but tofu? ๐Ÿ˜‡...his mother will serve some chicken or aloor dum as sides. I have a different agenda today.... saying Hi to an unknown gentleman as an "Indian" feeling very safe, hale and hearty in a foreign land!


Tofu is an acquired taste for an Indian, specially for a Bengali! So, I used all available spices and made it as per our taste... the locals will love it too ... they eat those murtabak and I see them often in the Parathawala chain... in Southern Indian restaurants having rasam or in all of the Northern Indian ones. Who will represent Eastern India?... We will but not at all times.... specially not when attempts are there to limit you within a particular region or city! I am a Kolkatan but more of a Mumbai maniac may be because some dear people live there and for its vibrance. On a Tofu post, I can talk about a Partha & Madhuchanda Dey but not at all about a Sailen & Suparna Rudra... the latter will stab me! Sailen is a master mariner, brother like to the husband who migrated from Bangladesh in 1986... We used to live within  a radius of 500 mt. in Kolkata and we bond over Ilish and "nodir tatka maach". Sailen's only request to me was not to feed him paneer and soybean.... I always conformed to that because he is the one who considers a Mac meal as "shondhyar jolkhabar".... and says "aguli khaiya ghumaitey parum na".... He has travelled the world with that accent as the master of 35-40 crew members belonging to a number of nationalities! His wife... who happens to be a little sister... migrated from Barisal some 12-13 years back once married ...  literally struggles with her two young boys in Mumbai... driving them to school, driving with them to the wet market... everywhere... in Mumbai she cannot afford four helps as was the case in Kolkata! So, you know there is nothing called "I do not know".... I do not know science because I did not wish to learn... Leave them... today I wished to convey a Thank You note to the people of this island for their sense of decency! I was caught in the rain yesterday morning while at walk, I met a man in a deserted road who offered help and not anything else.... All wet, I was looking nonsensical, no one passed lewd remarks.... no one made me feel awkward! I cannot risk this in Kolkata, not anywhere in my motherland! I am thankful.... but I cannot prepare and share a seaweed-cabbage soup with tofu.... I love it but I have the responsibility of feeding my hungry men, I have to get people close to my heart who may have felt left out the previous day.... I do not have a brain that works at jet speed... so I do not know how much of justice did I do in this TOFU BHURJI STUFFED PARATHA that was served with some salad and a coconut-green chilli-lemon juice chutney! I made some silly clicks even in the rain, iPhones are truly great... mine was totally wet yesterday and its still working... see those "jamrul" have grown big and I tasted one as well.... in another week or two they will be full grown.... Waiting for some drumsticks hanging at my arm's length!





You are not me, so you will not have a "til-badamer takti" and a cookie with teh-o-kosong after your walk and before entering the gym for some free hands... then one big paratha at night does not help! Be wise and stop being my friend... for your own benefit! I will still share this breakfast / lunch / dinner platter for you all.... What does the grape bunch say... nothing special.... we, as a family love grapes.... each one denotes one of my readers.... because a plate can hold a maximum of two TOFU BHURJI STUFFED PARATHA and I consciously avoid the count of 3 and 4.... In social media we deal with so many people... it is not the place to flaunt personal relationships.... as of me I do what I think is right.... which may be wrong.... but you know..... in a sense I am headstrong! We prefer our parathas little overdone... I feel too worked up with stuffed parathas... so be with me and use a fork... that way you can stuff them with more of the yummy filling!




INGREDIENTS : [for the filling]

Tofu : 350gm
Potato : 1medium [washed, boiled, peeled]
Carrot : 2medium [washed, peeled, boiled]
Green Chilli : 2-3medium [chopped]
Onion : 1medium [sliced]
Fresh Coriander Leaves : 2-3tbsp [chopped]
Cumin Seed : 1/4tsp
Cumin Powder : 1tsp
Coriander Powder : 1tsp
Red Chilli Powder : 1tsp
Garam Masala Powder : 1tsp
Turmeric Powder : 1/2tsp
Salt : As Required
Sugar : 1tsp
Oil : 2tbsp

INGREDIENTS : [for the flour dough]

Refined Flour : 1coffee mug
Whole Wheat Flour : 11/2coffee mug
Ghee : 1tbsp [clarified butter]
Salt : As Required

INGREDIENTS : [Final Step]
The Dough
The Tofu Filling
Ghee : 2tsp for each paratha
Tawa / Griddle, Rolling Pin & Base, Ladle / khunti๐Ÿ˜€

INGREDIENTS : [for the coconut-green chilli-lemon juice chutney]

Shredded Coconut : 1medium cup
Green Chilli : 1medium
Lemon Juice : 2-3tbsp
Sugar : 1/2tsp
Black Salt : 1/4tsp


PROCEDURE :

Let us prepare the chutney first. Take all the ingredients mentioned together in a blender.





Blend at high for two minutes pausing every 1 minute. We are done. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until we are serving it! Coconut spoils so early in my kitchen!

Let us prepare the dough now which is nothing but our normal paratha dough. 

Take both the flours, ghee, salt in a bowl and rub for 2 minutes.




Add water little by little... warm or cold to form a dough... moderately soft. The kneading requires 5-8 minutes of our effort!

Cover for about 20-30 minutes, meanwhile we will prepare the tofu bhurji / scramble.




You see I am very lazy about clicking every step of cooking, so I mention the word "few"....

Scramble the tofu, slice the onion, chop the coriander leaves and green chillies. Nonetheless to say, they should be washed!




Take the washed potato, peeled and washed carrot in a pressure cooker, add 1 big cup water and little salt. Pressure cook at high up to 1 whistle at low heat!

Once cool, peel the potato... mash both nicely.




Heat oil in a wok, temper with cumin seeds and add the sliced onion.




Once the onion turns golden brown, add the tofu, cumin and coriander powders, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, salt.




Fold in well and keep stirring for 2 minutes or so. Now add the carrot and potato mash, the garam masala, chopped green chillies, sugar.





Fold in well and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the chopped coriander and stir for a minute. Our filling is ready, we will transfer it to a bowl to cool.




Remove cover from the dough. Knead again for 2 minutes. Take out tennis ball sized portions and smoothen between your palm. As I said that I am poor with stuffed parathas. So, I rolled out a round chapati, spread filling on it. Then covered it with another chapati / round paratha and sealed the corners with a fork. This way we can prepare it hassle free with more amount of filling.

Once you start eating smaller amount, you feel sick with higher dose. I had one and not feeling so comfortable till now. So, prepare the dough according to your family's appetite. Excess of Tofu bhurji is not a problem because you can eat it with your bread!







Heat your griddle / tawa. Place one stuffed paratha at a time. Cook both sides well.

Now, add ghee and cook again both sides well, specially the sides.... remember that in this case the edges and the middle is not at the same level.





Enjoy with your favourite chutney, sauce and salads.... practically no sides are required!




Tuesday, 19 June 2018

GUR DIYE DOIER GHOL



You know this lady @ CURRY AND SPICE is a show off basically .... she in public speaks on health and how only exercise and a good diet chart, not food supplements can be a solution to all health hazards.... What does she actually do in the privacy of her home?.... eats a big, bad coconut bun with her morning tea... Now doing a 6-8 km brisk walk is not a big deal for me only if the myth called eat what you like and then workout had any effect on the body.... It does not work that way... it never does. A proper diet is so essential for a healthy body. I cannot quit the kind of food I love, I cannot afford to be an obese with a  4'11" height either.... so what you see in a woman with all sweat on her face has 60% truth in it! The rest of the honesty is murdered by a coconut bun as of now! .... All my readers know, the son at this home is gradually turning to be one of this island... so be it a coconut bun or a red bean bun.... enters this home on a regular basis! Until here it is fine.... when a mother nearing 50 does not have the power to resist herself from having one.... the problem lies therein.... So early morning a coconut bun already went inside... late evening a long walk will also happen... and that problem called 7-8 kg overweight is not going to be solved... I am wise only when it comes to soda / aerated drinks... because they do not satisfy my taste bud.... did not even in those days of Gold Spot or Thums Up or Limca.... I was so busy to watch and fall for those happening guys in the ads that I had no time to fancy the drinks.... I had always been a "fishy" character.... do not go by my innocent looks... I am not! So, to hydrate oneself what should we do?.... We will go for the healthiest of drinks made with things lying around... like this GUR DIYE DOI ER GHOL.... Ghol which is near to Chaas rather than lassi had remained a quintessential cooling drink for the Bengalis for long besides a "lebur shorbot".... Do not ask me how long, place of origin, the reason, its nutritional value .... for that you have to travel to others' streams and enjoy the reads as much as I do! If you are an owner of a blog, give us something more besides your wonderful recipes... You are not silly as me and I am sure you will  not fill your space  with melodrama.... but with more of information equipped with wonderful writing skills.... People by now got to know that the lady @ CURRY AND SPICE tactfully plays with few common words... they should also know that she at times needs a dictionary while going through English literature.... This is the reason why I like reading our friend Dr. Nishi Pulugurtha... she speaks, thinks, eat, dream, write English in a way she does in Telegu, her mother tongue.... mind it she is a visiting professor to IIMs to that "bahargaon's" State Universities too.... I do not know with two alzheimer patients at home and a job... how she manages dining out every other day or travelling to remote places of Bengal & India often with her gang that includes her sister, a teacher at Roorkee Engineering college.... whose son is a wonderful photographer & painter.... I turn onto the son... P... look at the kids around... they sing, dance, paint, orate, swim.... what are you doing? At this point I get so angry with the brother... you had to choose your own to create another car game addict? So, good parenting does not happen at this home.... What happens is some cooking-shooking at all times.... such drinks like GUR DIYE DOI ER GHOL are made as a stop gap. If you run or walk in the sun, you need such healthy coolers once back home. I do not care about the sweat, I enjoy clicking the little pleasures you see below.... I do not know how an ace photographer would have taken the shot! As for my sweaty, burnt face, I never do really care... did not even on my hay days... come on I could not sacrifice food for a guy... haha... On a serious note... I always wished... one should be able to love and accept the real me beyond my not so pleasant looking physical features...... I do not have a problem with people having physical beauty.... I enjoy them... both men and women... God forbid I never get bored with an overdose of watching! Why do I like Nishi and her kinds? She takes life very lightly, she has immense potential and "materials" in her that I like, she does take pride in herself which is necessary to move ahead but she does not show it off, she is a class as is defined in my dictionary.... so you know by now that I am all about myself who is very rigid and vocal about what she dislikes... haha... I am never scared of loneliness... so I do not care who stays in my life... who does not! I know my kinds will grace my surroundings...







The word "near" is apt for GUR DIYE DOI ER GHOL and not "similar" while comparing it with Chaas .... because it has a sweet element in it... authentically it is sugar that is used at Bengali homes, I just used jaggery... so nothing unique I have created. Chaas will never use sugar or jaggery in it! I prepared the doi er ghol for some visiting guests few days back... they said they loved it. This is exactly how a no fancy, yogurt drink is prepared at Bengali Homes with plain yogurt, lemon, ginger extract, black salt and lots of sugar... haha.... They say, sugar kills the health factor present in plain yogurt! In general, for Bengalis, Mishti Doi is doi in true sense, rest of India do not even sell sweetened yogurt in bulk.... may be! Many of the expat Indians may be sad that they cannot eat to the heart's content on their next visit to Kolkata... I am not much bothered... In the past few years, what I had in Kolkata is sweets... no one can prepare a Bengali sweet better in rest of the world or in India beyond Bengal... so I actually enjoy a Amritar Mishti Doi, SenMahasay er Dorbesh, Putiram er kochuri, Nokurer sandesh and if my friends Chandrayee or Swati visits... I get to have Balaramer Mishti too.... What I have to sacrifice is Coffee House' Afgani Cutlet or Mitra Cafe's Fish Kabiraji... You know I do not really crave for them anymore, I feel I can do them with freshest of ingredients maintaining the hygiene in the comfort of my kitchen, if not so authentic.... they will not bring health hazards... So, if you are in Kolkata.... do not miss visiting the sweet shops.... its one of the kind experience! Cooking may not be your passion.... there is no harm in doing it for your own.... When you do.... add lots of love in it... else it would taste bland... I cannot guarantee that I will learn accounts, excel, science, mathematics, physics, chemistry in return... the brain matters! Cooking only requires love and the right balance, skilled movement of fingers as of the expert chefs! So, eating out in Kolkata will remain a fear for many for quite sometime now.... one of my friends there who dines out every other day inspite of being a very good cook got phobic... "S will not eat out much rey".... I said "barite pot luck kor....".... if not literally, I meant so! 1kg mutton in Kolkata costs 550-600 rupees while a mutton cutlet in Hyatt Regency may cost nearly so.... make it a monthly affair, not a weekend one! That young girl, with weight issues will get angry with me.... she also has to think of her "kochi chana".... its no joke.... set Adnan Sami as an example! All said and done, I have a sweet making idea doing the round since yesterday with one weird element besides the few common... if it tastes well, it definitely will grace the blog! As of now let me share this "beat the heat" recipe of a desi cooler with plain yogurt, lemon, jaggery, ginger extract and black salt. Ghol was / is made in both sides of the family, was very much liked by the moron husband once, the brother perhaps still has it back from office... I mean Bengali homes love it between Spring and Autumn... for the rest of you... its definitely a cooler to keep... specially if you work outdoors for long! I use a chemical free jaggery powder available in the Indian stores... which does not add much colour or sweetness.

I have two Bengal favourite yogurt recipes made at home .... click the headings for the recipes!

KOLKATAR LAAL MISHTI DOI

KOLKATA R SHADA MISHTI DOI / HOMEMADE SWEETENED YOGURT




INGREDIENTS :

Plain Yogurt : 250gm or 8-10tbsp
Jaggery : 1small cup [I used a small cup of chemical free jaggery powder]
Lemon Juice : 1/4small cup [good if it is of the Bengal variety Gondhoraj]
Ginger Extract : 2tbsp
Black Salt : 1/2tsp
Water : 2coffee mug


PROCEDURE :

Take the yogurt in a heavy bottomed vessel.




Churn it with a "daler kata".... churner / whipper?




Add the jaggery powder to the yogurt.




Add the black salt, lemon juice, add and strain the ginger paste through a strainer using a spoon. Add 2 coffee mugs of water!




Churn again for about 2 minutes and strain the entire content to another vessel.




We will use a spoon to get the entire liquid to be strained. You know I hate wastage!




We are done, now the content is to be chilled before serving!



The amount I served will make 3 medium sized glasses or 4 smaller ones. Increase or decrease the amount of ingredients accordingly!




It is always to be served chilled and never to be topped with ice cubes!




Sunday, 17 June 2018

FULKOPI ALOO DIYE KOI MAACHER JHOL



Now that the big event for some of my friends and readers is over, I can go ahead with some Fish Tales.... Was just waiting for the right time, and today is just perfect! Born and brought up in a "nodi matrik" state... love for fresh water fish is natural for me. Therein lies the problem.... In the past eight years of stay in this island, I failed to hug a sea fish except for salmon.... but how long can you have "shorshe salmon" and "grilled salmon".... You can have if not you are a primitive like me.... who finds solace in a "kechki maacher aloo-peyaz chocchori" in absence of a "deshi tyangra, pabda, aar, boyal, dhai, kajoli, charapona" and people have to share pictures of them been sold in front of my eyes! These days I have stopped sharing my pain with our mother, she cannot take anything lightly, the word joke is not in her dictionary and gets so sad ..... It makes me angry... "Mani, I am happy here.... tomai kichu boler upai nei".... I am not happy with the taste of mutton here too which does not necessarily mean I want to go away from this place.... We feel safe and secured here! Neither I am interested in taking a dig at my place of birth except for lamenting over the loose administration.... the well being of my own is definitely a concern. I am anti-ruling party of my country of origin that is true.... I am silly that is also true... but I always treat issues in particular, I do not sew them together!.... There is no pride in mocking a prime minister for practising Yoga.... I am not a good example to follow.... but I will always have good things to say about people who take some care of their body and health.... You do not care about your body only means you do not care about your loved ones.... Let us leave discussions that breed controversies.... situation at this home needs some attention.... the Argentina supporter did not sleep last night it seems.... I woke up exactly at 5:40 am this morning and saw someone smoking, did not answer any of my queries and now sleeping after a cuppa.... I travelled backwards.... the maternal grandfather lived with us from Monday to Friday and spent the weekend at his own palace! He made it sure that we siblings watch cricket, football and lawn tennis religiously.... both him and our father were Argentina supporters, next came Brazil. The brother became a sports lover and his elder sister.... a celebrity maniac. I loved cricket till Sunil Gavaskar, Imran Khan, Wasim Akram, Ravi Shastri, Mohinder Amarnath, Dennis Lillee, the blue eyed David Gower played.... Richie Benaud not in the commentary box?... no point watching! I watched football till Maradona played and enjoyed Lawn Tennis till Chris Evert, Bjorn Borg, Stefan Edburg ruled the court .... So, this cannot be called love for sports, I do not even understand the games.... The brother had sports in him.... when his team wins... he takes out "kali-potka, dodoma" from his store, goes to the terrace and burst those crackers without caring about the neighbours! He must be missing our father this World Cup season.... the feet that dribbled did not move a bit in the last seven days of his life! The brother had cricket in him but you know middle class families cannot take risk! One cannot expect the offspring to be Nadia Comaneci and Marie Curie at the same time! Now it worries me to see the brother's slim and trim body turning onto a couched potato like his sister... absolutely uncalled for! If not sports, let me talk something I love... food and greenery! Last Thursday I went to a friend's home and instantly loved her flat.... it has almost a small terrace sized balcony and another adjoining smaller one with the master bedroom... and her husband loves gardening! I fell for their indoor plants and eager to visit the nursery next week... I have some space beside the main door! Several times I requested the boss at this home to rent a ground floor flat that usually comes with a backyard and a wide balcony in this island, that too at a lesser price... who listens to me at this home?.... Tell me only people at ground floor catches dengue? I cannot sacrifice Cristine, he cannot get away with his recent love for some specific car brands and we are very very middle class who are unable to fulfil all their wishes together at a time! Let us eat, travel, enjoy instead... So, that friend of mine is from Midnapore district of Bengal.... to be precise from the tourist spot Mandarmoni... I was lost in the stories of her parent's pond full of fish of my choice, garden occupying acres of land.... No wonder, we got to have "goyna bori"prepared and sent by her mother and sister-in-laws.... amazing taste... she prepared so many items of which "maacher tok" was one and as I said earlier it is little different from the one done in our side of the family! We get a seasoning kind of here "butter cereal"... she used it in a dry prawn starter with crisp curry leaves.... I liked! The rest of the fish varieties I could not have full, I just tasted because the primitive me is craving for a "charaponar tok" in this heat or a "kochi pathar patla jhol" .... because I loved her "dal, ucche aloo bhaja and echorer dalna" way too much.... Our mother do not read my blog.... else she would have fainted knowing her daughter eating vegetables.... that too a bitter gourd.... So, I have high hopes about our son that one day besides a chicken, mutton, prawn and salmon, he may go after his mother and  enjoy an ilish or this FULKOPI ALOO DIYE KOI MAACHER JHOL. I used to love chicken so much, now you see I look for chicken "stir fry cut" to be able to have a little bit.... Instead of stir frying, I ended up into another dish... yummy... to be shared some day.... Bengalis are not so good at stir frying... not a primitive like me... my kinds are always skeptical .... "what if it remains undercooked".... let me enjoy it in an Oriental restaurant... that high heat and wide woks do wonders.

FULKOPI ALOO DIYE KOI MAACHER JHOL is a very common, Bengali dish with the climbing perch fish, cauliflower, potatoes, tomatoes and few regular spices. Though its price has sky rocketed, this is not the curry a Bengali mother-in-law will wish to do for her son-in-law on the occasion of jamaishashti leaving big sized prawns, mutton, ilish or doi katla .... it is a weekend affair for us! Me at 47 is against the ritual of "jamaishashti".... That my father, husband, brother was / is a son-in-law or the son will be one son-in-law does not matter, I believe it has to stop.... I have seen many a parents go out of the way to treat the son-in-law.... I have seen how discriminated a daughter-in-law is  as against a son-in-law in most homes in our society.... the relationship is same... the treatment different.... why? I am a proud mother of a son does not mean that this inequality does not hurt me.... I am also against the so called feminists' intent of male bashing.... thats so silly.... why do they need a male companion then... Get a balance in your thoughts!  Anyway, I wished to go Bengali today with a very Bengali way of cooking Koi Maach urff Climbing Perch! Its a very favourite fish of mine, We get it fresh too both in some of the local markets and the Asian stores but they are supplies from the neighbouring states.... so the taste could not satisfy me! This dish was made some three months back, I did not feel like buying anymore.... just dreaming of the "borsher dim bhora koi" ever since. Climbing Perch tastes best when caught from a canal... more or less small in size.... they are caught and sold fresh.... Our mother always says that she was the eldest of her six siblings... three sisters and three brothers... so she had to learn everything at a tender age to help her mother.... I do feel proud when she takes pride saying that she learnt cutting a Koi Maach at age 13... better than people saying that "I was the youngest of the siblings and was not allowed to work"... I see they learnt to abuse people who do not fall at their feet with great expertise! Our wrong is not knowing something but  in the inability to accept that there is always someone better somewhere and we must know to appreciate them! Anyway, I cannot be our mother, neither do I have a supply of "unaner chai".... ash of earthen or wooden oven is required to hold the slippery body of this fish.... so I get them cut in the store.... Back in Kolkata, all the effort is worth because of its amazing taste! Here, even the fresh ones taste like Tilapia.... I am not taking a dig at anyone.... some 35 years back our family doctor said Tilapia is good for our body.... just that the couple at this home do not fancy it! Such dishes like FULKOPI ALOO DIYE KOI MAACHER JHOL should be there in a Bengali food blogger's collection.... though I know the majority of my readers will not know what a climbing perch is.... We do the same curry with Bengal Carps, Prawn and Sea Bass, taste definitely will differ! .... Yesterday only I did the same curry with sea bass.. and changed the pictures too! People visit or not, it always feels good to blog on a very authentic dish! This was definitely a winter treat during our childhood! About the picture, something is missing... beside the dal there have to be some vegetables and pakoras.... the top left corner looks very empty, needed some fillers?


If you have not gone through my Chicken Kasha recipe for a long time, please do! I updated the pictures and kept some gravy which is unlikely of this dish.... dunk you chapati or paratha as you wish....

CHICKEN KASHA





INGREDIENTS :

Koi Maach / Climbing Perch : 6-8 [cut and cleaned, washed]
Cauliflower Florets : 10-12 [medium cut,washed]
Potato : 1big [washed, peeled, cut into 8pieces]
Tomato : 1medium [washed, chopped]
Green Chilli : 2 [washed, slitted]
Cumin Seed : 2pinch
Bayleaf : 1
Ginger Paste : 11/2tbsp
Cumin Powder : 2tsp
Coriander Powder : 1/2tsp
Red Chilli Powder : 2tsp
Turmeric Powder : 1tsp +1/2tsp
Salt : As Required
Oil : 5-6 tbsp + 2tbsp [We always use Mustard Oil]


PROCEDURE :

The cleaning process of Koi Maach take some time as they have got numerous scales! Wash each under running water and rub with turmeric powder and salt. Keep aside for 15-20 minutes.

Take the washed cauliflower florets in a microwave proof bowl, add water and little salt. Microwave at high for 6-8 minutes. Let cool to drain the water. This helps to get rid of the hidden insects if any. I am not my couple friends, the Sher protagonists Suchandra & Joydip Kundu, so I cannot kiss flies & insects.... I am scared of them. Steaming the cauliflower before cooking also helps a "Bengali pet from gola-buk jola, ambaler dhekur"....

Rub little salt and turmeric to the steamed cauliflower florets and washed potato pieces. Keep aside for 5 minutes or so.

Heat oil in a wok and lightly fry the cauliflower florets and potato pieces separately and in batches. Take out. Fry the fish pieces lightly in batches.

Add little more oil to the existing oil and bring to heat! Temper with cumin seeds and a bay leaf!

Add the ginger paste, 1/2tsp turmeric powder, salt as required. Stir for 2 minutes or so. Add the tomato pieces and fold in well.

Keep stirring till the tomato pieces melt.... Add the cumin powder, red chilli powder, coriander powder and keep stirring for another 1minute or so. Add 11/2 coffee mug of water. Give a gentle stir.

Cover cook at low heat for 2 minutes. Open cover and add the fried potatoes. Cover cook at low heat for 2-3 minutes.

Open cover and add the fried fish and cauliflower florets. Gently stir once. Cover cook at low heat for 3 minutes or so.

We are done. Enjoy hot with piping hot steamed rice.... I am not happy with the pictures.... the dal should have some "bhajabhuji" / pakoras by its side!








Friday, 15 June 2018

VEGETARIAN CURRY PUFF



There are a couple of special occasions round the year, I wish to give considerable amount of importance to a couple of them, if not all. For a Hari Raya Aidilfitri, I have to wish everyone who are celebrating ..... Ramadan Kareem.... People around who helped at different stages of life do not necessarily belong to my religion.... some explained me the meaning of a blog, stopped by my not so satisfying posts, a girl much younger than me was made my partner on the first day at work here in the island.... Me, who had always preferred to work manually got extremely scared at the sight of a computer getting back to work after 10 years.... When I lacked confidence totally, this girl named F helped me with all necessary guidance.... another F was one of my mentors.... both have a celebration today like few others.... so fish shares can wait till Sunday. What I wonder is that is it me who at age 22 was entrusted with lot more responsibilities.... like accompanying 20-25 board examines from Barasat to Kanchrapara and getting them back safely.... I was young, inexperienced.... yet the management trusted me and said... we know you are the right person who can stay cool and handle anything on the road.... I definitely had few accompanying colleagues with me.... Look at me today, my colleagues and friends are either a principal at a school or a senior teacher.... what I am? nothing.... I sit at home and cook.... but one must follow one's passion.... If you look at my friend Atoshi Shyam's page Artesance.... you will not believe that she has no formal training in Art! So not knowing to bake is no excuse..... The only thing I can say in my defence is that I still try to be honest in whatever I do! As a Food Blogger, we will try to unite people..... if not always but during special occasions.... so I strongly felt that I will not go ahead with a meat share either..... Let me unite cooks, artists and skilled photographers ๐Ÿ˜Š.... not always it is possible though. That I will prepare a mutton pulao & paneer for our Ramadan lunch is a completely different issue... I cannot multitask.... writing a recipe and cooking 4 dishes before lunch is not my cuppa.... meat pulao is a wonderful solution to hide my drawback. I am not our mother, the extremely energetic person at 70 was cleaning my home last week and yes all alone! I / We felt very bad and said ... "Mani ask bhai to take you back home, get a help when we go and then clean... you are not our helper"..... So, you know now Rizia Mashi has failed to prove her faithfulness.... It was me who literally supported her home when she had no work, it was me who got her work in different homes once I left.... Now, you see allegiance changes according to convenience! I do not blame her.... she is a have not who has to feed few stomachs, obviously she has to keep happy her present resources.... What I can do best is stop going out of the way for people who will not move an inch for my benefit!..... People may forget what I did for them.... I will not forget what some did to get CURRY AND SPICE a place in the food blogging world.... So, to me this VEGETARIAN CURRY PUFF is the right share for today! Till yesterday, I was very much worried about the mother who was cleaning our home all alone.... The husband always says.... curtail your expectations S.... Now that the mother is back to her "palace".... I am happy........ Rizia Mashi is just an example, it could be Radharani too.... and you know it is through small incidents you get to know people.... What I fail to make our expert mother understand is that poor people are just made pawns to fulfil our own interests, we are at fault.... not them! .... So I will not tell her anything... just that "your service is not required anymore mashi.... come to me when your daughter's marriage is fixed.... I will help you more than anyone else.... I know I have a broader mind".... The only thing I can take pride in is I do not rebuke people even when they cause me irritation.... I am still struggling to pay due respect to the people who felt that this girl should be given the best conduct prize.... haha... do not know how long I can to maintain an "image" of innocence! .... I do not know why some nice / pleasant personas have to give so horrid poses in social media.... I do not know either why it irritates me.... they do not even feature in my life! Unlike some of you, S' Kolkata visits are not "romanticising with Kolkata"...... its work... work... work.... she loves her freedom and she hates to be questioned.... "why are you seen always @ City Centre2? Everyday you have to go out?".... My smile answers... "How is it bothering you? Will you do my works?" People only see my pictures with friends in the social media and takes no time to judge! .... S purposefully is behaving selfish with her family this season.... Instead of spending time visiting the doctors and the bank.... she has chosen to go for a holiday.... she will divulge in right time.... places we visited and the food we had!....Why do people publicise the hotel names too while on tour.... isn't that a serious security threat? Anyway, my concern today is wishing Ramadan Kareem to my friends and readers ... if not royally but with this simple, a famous snack in this island and its neighbouring state VEGETARIAN CURRY PUFF!

My VEGETARIAN CURRY PUFF may not look that much authentic, I have used less butter in the dough, I did it for the first time  and decided to blog on it! I find the very popular curry puffs of OCK chain very heavy on my stomach.... they are very tasty though.... They have chicken too in the filling alongside potato.... I do not prefer always... I discovered another joint who sell pure vegetarian ones.... yet again they are heavy on the stomach. My sealing part is a tampering of the original.... haha.... I used a fork to seal which is not done in case of curry puffs. For  recipes of this island and its neighbour.... I trust Rasa Malaysia.... though I made the filling as per our taste bud! So, it is more like our samosa / shingara. This salted, deep fried, vegetarian snack VEGETARIAN CURRY PUFF seems to me like a near cousin of our samosa / shingara sans the tempering of the oil or the use of green peas / peanuts! I even found the casing of curry puffs easier than samosas. I was very much willing to blog on something today that South Asia / India can feel connected to and can recreate at their homes. I found curry puff the right choice. For the rest, if you can make me eat salad with an olive oil dressing, you should prepare a curry puff too.... its near to your minced chicken pie. Yet.... few nations' and Bengal's take on food is same.... keep separate food and health.... haha.... My note to them.... "if you can pile your stomachs with French Fries every other day, having curry puff once a month is no big deal".... the stepwise pictures will say its not a sweaty affair! This pretending to be an angel is not a wise soul either when it comes to food! She balances her diet and hunger pangs eating one paratha instead of two and good amount of fruits of her choice. She is a champion in spoiling the process of clean eating.... she got burgers for her men and Cristine yesterday night, she herself had "amriti o muri".... If she cannot have burgers, she should have dined on a soup.... and salad! These days I have stopped showing my tummy to Cristine... no point except for turning her crazy.




God forbid... I do not have a generous serving of the mutton pulao... walking 7-8 km five days a week and eating loads of carb rarely helps.... You have not developed severe neck to back pain and you will do some weight trainings... walking is a very low intensity cardio.... It is the lazy me who loves brisk walks and no other exercises. Anyway, when I prepare and enjoy a snack as tasty as this VEGETARIAN CURRY PUFF, body trimming is hardly on my mind.... I am lost in each bite. I know you too will.... shall we proceed to prove it? In one of the steps.... you will see that I have messed with the frying part in the beginning.... We have to be careful... they should not feel like "poori-aloo" roll... heat the oil, bring it to minimum and fry.... At times we have to switch off gas and fry and again switch on in minutes.... Yet, I could not get the perfect look... Google Images will prove that! Trying to be honest, I must also say that they tasted amazing! Instead of meat masala they use, I made use of the tandoori masala and garam masala I always have in stock.

Fairly inspired by a recipe from Rasa Malaysia!




INGREDIENTS : [FOR THE DOUGH]

REFINED FLOUR : 11/2COFFEE MUG
BUTTER : 4TBSP
BAKING SODA : 2PINCH
WATER : AS REQUIRED
SALT : 1/4TSP

INGREDIENTS : [FOR THE FILLING]

BOILED POTATO : OF TWO BIG ONES
MINCED ONION : 1/2SMALL CUP
TANDOORI MASALA : 2-3TSP
GARAM MASALA : 1TSP
RED CHILLI POWDER : 1/2TSP
TURMERIC POWDER : 1/4TSP
SALT : AS REQUIRED
OIL : 2TBSP

INGREDIENTS : [FINAL ASSORTMENT]

THE DOUGH
THE POTATO FILLING
OIL TO DEEP FRY


PROCEDURE :

Boil the potatoes as you wish, wash again and peel. Chop them roughly... they chop it here unlike mashing it as in case of samosa / shingara.



Peel, wash and chop the onions. 




Heat oil in a wok and add the chopped onions. Stir and fry for 3-4 minutes.





Add the chopped, boiled potatoes. Fold in well. Add the turmeric and red chilli powders, tandoori and garam masala powders, salt as required.




Fold in very well and keep stirring for 4-5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside to cool.





Take the refined flour, salt and baking powder in a bowl. Mix well.




Add the butter and rub for 2 minutes. I used less butter than required!





Add water little by little and knead to prepare a smooth dough... do not add all the water at a time.... it may give you trouble. This may take some 10-12 minutes.




Cover the dough with a moist cloth for 15 - 20 minutes.... Remove cover and knead for 2-3 minutes again. Tear off small portions, smoothen between your two palms.




Roll each in poori shape.




Fill in with the potato mixture.




Fold in and seal the ends with a fork. I found it very much convenient compared to casing of a samosa / shingara.





Now heat enough oil in a wok to deep fry. Reduce heat to minimum. Frying in too hot oil will make them soggy and give a poori feeling.... you can see the difference between the first one and the rest.



So, we will fry both sides at very low heat, even switching off gas if required and again switching on in a moment.

We will use a "chakni hata".... perforated ladle to fry both sides well and hold for sometime as seen below to get rid of oil. We will then place them on tissue papers before serving.





We will definitely have them hot and fresh with a generous serving of salad.... which the senior had this time to my surprise... the prince did not. The tea / coffee cups are missing.... do not forget them.