Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Masala Puri/Poori

Masala Puri/poori is a popular south Indian chat/street food you will find in every nook and corner of the city. It is not only restrained to south, but spread over into rest of the country gaining its distinct local name. It is now popular in Pakistan and Bangladesh. We, Kannadigas call it ‘Masala Puri/poori’. Chats are an endless craving for anyone and hard to resist as you walk past the street filled with warm, rustic aroma! So now you know what to savor next time you are in the IT capital of India, Bangalore. Trust me you will thank me for having said this. It is a favorite with everyone irrespective of age group.

Masala Puri is deep fried crushed crispy puris soaked in scrumptious, spicy, thick gravy with green peas and garnished with sev, onion, and grated carrot, finish it with by sprinkling a pinch of chaat masala to add that extra spark with a dash of lemon in it. ‘Masala’ is ground fine paste (or powder) of spices/herbs, ‘Puri’ is unleavened deep fried Indian bread. There are two mainly two versions of pooris- soft and crispy. Soft pooris/kachoris are made with flour/whole wheat flour similar to chapathi but are deep fried and commonly served for breakfast or as light meal. Crispy puffed puri goes to the making of chats/snacks.

My cousin’s fight over the last bite and bargain with mom for that little extra pamper as she was youngest in the group and to wipe the bowl clean is all the joy to savor this delicious, rustic dish. Our evening walk to the stall a few blocks away from home and gossiping in the group, waiting in queue decades ago is long gone make me feel nostalgic now. Home delivery services have made things easier.

 It is a wholesome filling meal in itself as it has all veggies, peas, and fried puris though it is consumed as snack. I tried to recreate this deliciously rich, scrumptious savory snack at the comfort of my kitchen to match the unbeatable taste of our street vendors, I think I can confidently claim I succeeded in this but slight variation is always acceptable.

Pooris are readily available in Asian stores or you can make ahead at home and store in airtight container. I make my thin, crispy pooris from scratch simply because the result is fresh, crispy, homemade puris and that’s the fun of cooking at home. If you would like to try your hands on it click here for recipe Puri/Poori  .
    For Paani Puri/Golgappa recipe click on the link paani-puri/golgappa/puchkas  


For Garnish

20-25 Puris
1 onion, chopped
1 tomato, chopped
3 tbsp grated carrot
½ cup sev
1tsp chat masala

For Masala

1 inch ginger, chopped
5-6 cloves garlic
2 green chillies
1 onion, diced
1 tomato, chopped
½ bunch coriander
Spices (1” cinnamon, 3 cloves, 8-10 peppercorn)
2 tsp coriander powder
Salt to taste

1 large potato
1 cup dry green peas (soaked overnight)


Step1: Pressure cook soaked peas and potato adding 2 cups water and salt for 1 whistle, strain, set aside to cool. Don’t discard water.

Step 2: Dry roast spices and transfer to blender/mixer. Add 1 tsp oil to the same pan and fry ginger, garlic, chilies, onion, tomato and until raw aroma vanish for 2-3 minutes in medium heat. Let it cool, add to blender with spice, coriander and grind to fine paste using the strained water.

Step 3: To the above paste add ½ of cooked peas and peeled potato and whiz everything to fine paste.

Step 4: Transfer the ground paste to sauce pan and add the saved water to make medium consistency masala. We need slightly thick consistency gravy, please refer picture below.

Step 5: Bring it to boil, add coriander powder, salt and cook for 8- 10 minutes in medium low heat. Add the remaining green peas, adjust consistency, cook for 2-3 minutes, and turn off.

Step 6: To assemble, place 5-6 pooris on plate, gently crush them by pressing with your palm. Pour a ladle full of masala over the pooris, garnish with onion, tomato, carrot, sev and sprinkle chat masala, serve hot with lemon wedges. Be generous with masala and enjoy!   


Saturday, September 24, 2016

Chicken pizza with olives and pepper

Last night I’d a craving for potato fries. No, it was not only fries but something else along with it. How about a little sin on weekend! Eat everything, but moderately is the secret to happiness is what I believe in, that too on weekend you definitely have an excuse.

I wanted a pizza- cheesy, with chicken olive toppings. A quick search through the available ingredients confirmed that I can manage to make pizza for myself at the comfort of my kitchen. I wouldn’t claim that it is a perfect pizza, but I can assure you will be surprised on how much you love to relish your efforts. Potato fries made from scratch turned out little bit soggy, so the recipe will be coming once I perfect it until then enjoy Pizza!

When you prepare pizza from scratch at home the good thing is you always have the control on what’s going in it. But it is absolutely fine to go for store bought pizza base while you are in hurry as dough rising takes 45 minutes to 1 hour to double in its size.

Yummy, aromatic, cheesy Chicken Pizza has green bell pepper, tomato and olive toppings. You can substitute chicken with mushrooms, jalapeno peppers, red bell pepper or sundried tomatoes or anything of your choice. Paprika is the only ingredient going in for seasoning of my chicken pizza, you can substitute with dried oregano, basil, thyme, rosemary. 


For pizza base

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 cup warm water
1 sachet of instant rising yeast (1 teaspoon)
 2-3 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp sugar
1 ½ tsp salt

 For Pizza

4-5 tbsp pizza sauce
½ cup mozzarella cheese
1 tsp paprika powder
1 small green bell pepper, sliced
1 tomato, sliced
½ chicken breast, cut into strips
Olives, sliced


Step 1: Take a mixing bowl, add flour, salt and mix. Make a well in the center and pour water, add yeast, sugar and oil, let stand for 2-3 minutes. Knead the dough until it comes together, dough is sticky at this stage. Brush with oil and cover with damp kitchen towel, allow it to rise for 45 minutes or until it doubles in size. Use dough hook to knead if you are using stand mixer.

Step 2: Punch the dough back and bring it on to the floured surface, knead for a couple of minutes.

Step 3: Spread over the dough gently onto the pizza baking pan using your fingers. Oil your fingers if necessary.

Step 4: Saute chicken with 2 pinches salt, few drops oil, and pinch of black pepper powder in sauce pan for a minute.

Step 5: Spread over pizza sauce leaving edges, be generous. Spread mozzarella cheese. Top it with chicken, olives, bell pepper, and tomato. Sprinkle paprika.

Step 6:  Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and bake for 15 minutes or until crust turn to golden brown. Remove the pan and check for doneness, slice and enjoy!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016


CHAKLI- Deep fried Indian savory snack. 

It is on this auspicious day of Gowri Habba(festival) and Ganesha Chaturthy when family members get together and is a celebration all over India. Bringing home the sacred idols, welcoming it with aarathi, elaborate decorations, and a never ending cooking of variety of food are all the signs of festive vibes. What a joy to treat yourself with variety of food that is not only tasty, but loaded with nutrition and over loaded with love.

These festivals have rich and subtle meaning to convey, and the values are passed on from one generation to the next. Though not able to take it to that level of authentic worshipping like what my parents and grandparents do, we are definite incarnate of them all, which enables to follow the path they laid for us. Staying miles away from home country doesn’t mean to give up values incarnated in us from ages, but made the celebration simple and elegant.

Coming to the recipe, this yummy, crunchy savory snack is not only restricted to festivities. It can be served as tea time snack or something to munch on while watching your favorite movie.  Chakli mould is absolutely necessary for making this snack, without which it is not possible to shape the chakli (Picture attached below for better understanding). But smile, you can still make roundels with hole in the centre (kodubale) and follow the same procedure and then enjoy. The secret key for perfect chakli is to use roasted chana powder don’t substitute with gram flour.


2 cups rice flour
½ cup roasted chana powder (kadale)
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 ½ tsp chili powder
2 tsp sesame seeds (optional)
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying


Step 1: Make nice powder of roasted chana using mixer/food processor, set aside. Heat a frying pan, add cumin, sesame, quick stir. Add rice and chana flour and roast it in medium low for 4 to 5 minutes or until aromatic.

Step 2: Mean while boil water in another pan. Transfer the roasted flour to large mixing bowl, add salt and chili powder, mix thoroughly. Add 1 ½ cups boiling water and mix with ladle, and allow it to cool enough to work with bare hands.

Step 3: Knead well to form firm dough, like chapathy dough. Add warm water if required, cover and let it rest for 5 minutes. Divide it into 4 equal parts, knead to give a shape that fits the mold. Heat oil in a wok for deep frying. Fill the mold and start pressing on to butter paper to give them spiral shape as shown below.

Step 4:  Check the oil by dropping a small piece, it should rise to the top. Now the oil is ready to fry, keep it in medium-medium and carefully drop the pressed chaklis one by one. Flip over after a minute and fry the other side until crisp and golden brown, it takes 3 to 4 minutes.

Step 5: Transfer them on to paper towel to drain excess oil. Repeat the same for remaining batches and after it is completely cooled store them in air tight container jar.

Chakli Mould

Don’t over fry it burns the chaklis.

Bring water to rolling boil. 

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Broccoli Soup

Broccoli Soup/ Vegetable Soup

It’s not monsoon now but soups are welcome anytime of the year at my home. Having said that  I had done this broccoli soup months ago, I wanted to share recipe for those planning for light meal every night believe me this is wholesome, lip smacking, healthy dish you can add to your list and it is light on tummy.  
There is always something missing when we fly away from home country whatsoever the reason behind it. Adjusting to new culture, food, and ethnicity is not so easy task. I always miss food prepared by my mommy, that affection, warmth and miss being her toddler.  Broccoli is one such wonder vegetable rich in vitamins that can be eaten raw in salads, boiled or stir fried. I don’t find this tiny heads of broccoli in this summer may be either its seasonal vegetable or the supply has stopped in local market.  
  Vegetable stock is not required in this recipe as vegetables are being added directly and stir fried and boiled to perfection. This was my experiment in kitchen to use up the broccoli sitting in refrigerator for long time and turned out to be yummilicious.

½ cup vegetables (beans, carrot, sweet corn)
1 small head broccoli (10 florets)
3 garlic cloves, minced
2-3 tsp olive oil/veg oil
1 tsp black pepper powder
½ tsp chilli powder
3 tbsp corn starch
1 large egg (optional)
Salt to taste

Step 1: Roughly chop vegetables. Mix corn starch in about half cup of water and set aside.

Step 2: Heat oil in a sauce pan, saute garlic in low heat. Add vegetables and stir for two minutes, add salt, stir, add 4 cups water and bring it to boil.

Step 3: Add pepper and chilli powder. Simmer for 8 to 10 minutes. Add broccoli and boil further for 2 minutes.

Step 3: Stir in cornstarch and cook further until it thickens to your desired consistency, this won’t take more than five minutes

Step 4:  Add slightly beaten egg stirring continuously and let it boil for 2 minutes and turn off.

Adjust seasoning according to taste.
Add vegetables of your choice.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Restaurant style Cashew Chicken Curry

Now you can make this restaurant style – Rich, creamy, spicy, succulent curry yourself at the comfort of home. Recipe adapted from a regional cookery show, Oggarane Dabbi. This didn’t take a while to make me fall for it and an instant hit with the family. This hot and creamy affair with hot naan is all that you need to impress your guests and I bet they heap praises upon you. 

I made little changes to the original recipe and as always made it One Pot recipe and cut down the oil. Soaked cashew is ground to fine paste with coconut and chilli flakes makes this restaurant style curry taste rustic and scrumptious. To balance the heat cashew and coconut paste is added so be generous with chili powder. 

Hubby dear enjoyed each succulent piece of chicken as much as curry with much joy and says it’s one of my best curries. Yes, it does fit in that group! I had prepared more for his lunch box the next day but it was wiped clean right for dinner. Don’t be scared of the oil it is the oil emitted by ground cashew and coconut that makes the curry more delicious and oh so yummm.
Serve the Restaurant style Cashew Chicken curry with hot naan or chapathi with onion.


500 grams Chicken thighs with bone on skin on
3 tbsp olive oil/vegetable oil
Few curry leaves
2 tsp ginger garlic paste
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium tomato, chopped
1 tbsp chilli flakes
1 tsp red chili powder
1 tsp black pepper powder
Salt to taste

For paste

6 cashew nuts
4 tbsp shredded coconut



Step 1: Soak cashews for an hour. In a blender/mixer grind cashews and coconut to fine smooth paste using required water.

Step 2: Heat oil in a sauce pan, add mustards and let it pop, add curry leaves. Add onions, sauté for a while, add ginger garlic paste and sauté till raw aroma is gone. Add tomatoes, add chicken and sauté for 2 to 3minutes.

Step 3: Add salt and chili flakes, chili powder, cover and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes. Add cashew coconut paste and stir and cook for 5 minutes or till chicken is completely done. Add 1 cup water and bring it to boil, add pepper powder cook further for 2 minutes and switch off stove.


  • As I always say spices can be adjusted based on your spice level.
  • Dry roast 4 red chillies and run them in mixer to make fresh and aromatic chili flakes.Freshly roasted and ground spices always add more aroma and taste to the dish.