Friday, December 6, 2013

Yumm Sauce

This recipe had appeared in my local newspaper several months back. I was quite intrigued by one of the ingredients - Nutritional Yeast - and had clipped it to try it out. It took me a while to find Nutritional Yeast (found it at PCC Market) and finally make this sauce.

Here's how I made Yumm Sauce:

1/2 cup store-bought salsa of your choice
1/3 cup water
1/4 cup almond meal
1/4 cup chickpeas (I used canned, drained and rinsed)
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
2 tbsp. lemon juice
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp salt
1 tsp red chilli pwd
2 tsp cumin pwd
handful of cilantro leaves

Just blend all the ingredients together until smooth. Adjust seasonings if needed.

This will make about 1.5 cups of sauce. This sauce can be refrigerated for few days.

I used this sauce in quesadillas and tacos that night.

The next day I made myself a tortilla bowl salad for lunch and used this sauce between layers of rice, black beans, onions & tomatoes and a dollop of top.

Super Yumm!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Sindhi Kadhi

I learnt this recipe from my husband's aunt who visited us over the summer. It was totally new and unusual to me. My idea of kadhi was always buttermilk based, but this one has no buttermilk, but a tangy tomato-gram flour based gravy. Also love the addition of all kinds of veggies. This time I used okra, guvar beans and cauliflower (as done by maami); next time I will be adding more (like carrots, potatoes etc.). The one change I made was to sauté the veggies instead of deep frying them.

Here's how I made Sindhi Kadhi:

Prep the veggies by cutting the okra into 1 inch long trin strips, the guvar beans also into 1 inch long pieces and the cauliflower into flowerets.

Shallow fry each separately in abt 2 tsp oil till lightly browned and almost done.

Take 2 tbsp. oil in a non-stick pan. Fry 1/4 cup gram flour in it on medium low heat stirring occasionally until lightly browned and very fragrant, about 15-20 mins.

Slowly add up to 1 cup water. Keep stirring constantly to break up lumps as they form.

Add puree of 1 tomato (abt 1/2 cup). Continue stirring.

Add the seasonings - salt, red chilli pwd, coriander pwd all per taste. Add 1 tsp tamarind paste and 2 tsp jaggery (gul). Add more water if needed to get desired consistency. Bring to a boil, stirring all the time.
Just before serving, add the prepped veggies and let boil once more.
Serve hot with roti or rice.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Karela Bhaji

I was never a big fan of Karela (Bitter Gourd) until I ate it this way. Now I crave this bhaji every week. I think this bhaji is a great combination of flavors - bitter from the karela of course, sweet (gul/jaggery), sour (tamarind), salty, spicy and crunchy (peanuts).

Here's how I make Karelyachi Patal Bhaji (Bitter Ground Gravy Vegetable):

1. Wash the karelas and slit length wise. Deseed and remove remove any pulp in the center. Chop the karelas fairly fine. Sprinkle abt 1 tsp salt and leave for 1/2 hour.

2. After 1/2 hour, squeeze out as much water as possible from the karelas. I like to wrap the karela pieces in a thin cloth or handkerchief to help squeeze out the juice. For about 1 cup of chopped karelas, I got little over 1/4 cup juice. I usually throw this juice away, but I know people use it for medicinal purposes too.

 3. In a pressure pan, make the tempering by heating 2 tsp oil, dropping 1 tsp mustard seeds and after they stop crackling, adding 1/2 tsp cumin seeds and 1/4 tsp hing. Then add few curry leaves and the karela. Saute for abt 3 mins. Add 1 cup water, 1/4 cup shredded coconut, 2 tbsp. roughly chopped peanuts, salt to taste (remember the karela will already be slightly salty), 1/2 tbsp. tamarind paste, 2 tbsp. gul/jaggery, 1 tsp goda masala, 1 tsp coriander-cumin pwd, 1 tsp red chilli pwd. Give it a good stir, close the pressure pan and cook for 1 whistle.

4. When the pressure comes down, open the pan. You may need to adjust water and seasonings, if needed at this time. I have not done so, but if you add more water/seasonings, give it one boil. Serve hot/warm with polya.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Spicy Pumpkin Soup

Over the Thanksgiving holiday, I made Pumpkin bread and was left with over 1/2 can of pumpkin puree. After searching online, settled on making Pumpkin Soup. This is a very quick and easy recipe, ideal for chilly nights.

Here's how I made Spicy Pumpkin Soup:

Heat 2 tsp olive oil and sauté 1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped onions in it for 5 mins. Add 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper and continue sautéing another 5 mins. Add 1 or 2 cloves of garlic (chopped). Cook another 5 mins. Then add about 1 to 1.5 cups of the pumpkin puree. Add about 1 cup vegetable broth and the following seasonings to taste - salt, pepper, red chili flakes and Kirkland brand no salt seasoning mix. Add 1 wedge of Laughing Cow cheese of choice (I used Creamy Swiss). Stir well, breaking down the cheese wedge as you stir. Once it starts simmering, take off heat. Let cool, then blend to smooth puree.

Before serving, heat thoroughly and adjust consistency by adding more broth if needed.
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