Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Vermicilli Upma (Seviyan Upma)

A quick and light yet delicious snack/breakfast item that can be ready in less than 15 minutes.
I prefer using Bambino vermicelli available in Indian grocery stores.If not readily available ,substitute
Chinese rice noodles(very fine ones).

16 ozs vermicelli
8 ozs frozen shredded coconut(defrosted)
5/6 tbsps oil
1 tsp black mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp urad dal(optional)
5/6 dried red whole chillies
5/6 tbsps chopped   cashews
Few curry leaves
Salt to taste
A pot of boiling water

Heat  the oil in a pan and add the mustard seeds,the cumin seeds,the urad dal and the cashews and sauté on low till cashews and dal turn golden.Add the curry leaves and the red chillies and stir in the coconut and salt.Mix well.

In the pot of boiling water add some salt and a tbsp of oil.Add the vermicilli and cook for 2 minutes till it
looses its transulence.Do not overcook as it will become lumpy.Immediately drain in a fine colander and add the vermicilli to the pan containing the seasonings.Stir well on a medium flame for 2 minutes.
Be careful while mixing as it will get mushy if stirred too much.
Serve hot.

Optional:To make it more nutritious you can add a cup of boiled cubed carrots and boiled peas.
Or also a chopped sauteed onion.Add this to the seasoning mix before adding the boiled vermicilli. 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Loli / Koki -Indian flatbread

The most popular whole wheat flatbread among sindhis is the loli or koki as some prefer to call it.There are four to five different kinds of loli and I am starting with the masalewali loli or the one with spices added.

4 cups whole wheat flour(atta)
1/2 cup plus 1/4 cup canola oil (or ghee/clarified butter if you prefer)
2 finely chopped green chilies
1 big onion finely chopped(yellow or red)
2 tbsps finely chopped cilantro
salt and pepper to taste
about 1 cup water

Take the flour in a pan and add salt and pepper and mix well.I do taste a little bit of the flour to check the salt.Add the green chilies,onions,cilantro and mix well.Add 1/2 cup oil and knead till it achieves breadcrumbs texture.

Now gradually add the water and knead the dough till it comes together.Make sure the dough is not  soft but a little on the hard side.Add a teaspoon of oil and smoothen the dough.

Make small portions of this dough and roll into thick  discs.This dough yields 12.Heat a griddle and on a medium flame roast these flattened discs for about 30 seconds on each side.This step is followed for these masala lolis only.

Now roll these into small discs the size of a pancake of about 1/4 inch thickness.

Smear a little oil on the griddle and put the disc on it.Cook for a few minutes on a slow-medium flame.Smear some oil on top of the disc and flip over. 

Cook on the other side also for a few minutes till brown spots appear on both sides.Do not cook over high flame as the brown spots will appear but it will be uncooked from inside. I like to use the double griddle as i can cook two  or three at a time and am done faster :)

Serve with tea or plain yogurt and papad.It is supposed to be a breakfast item but can be eaten as a meal also.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Coconut Mithai (coconut sweet)

I have a request to post this recipe and so here goes :)

Shuchi this one is for you. A very simple and quick sweet that takes all of five minutes to make and is amazingly delicious. The traditional version uses  fresh grated coconut and milk and involves a lot of slow cooking and time.This is the shortcut version that can be made in a jiffy.

I had actually made a mithai cake on the weekend for a friend's surprise birthday party and it was a combination of the cashew sweet and the coconut sweet.
The bottom layer was the cashew sweet topped with a layer of the coconut sweet decorated with silver leaves and almond slivers.

I can of condensed milk
1 lb (less about 1/2 a cup)  of  finely shredded coconut (dry unsweetened)
2 tsps ghee(clarified butter)
seeds of 4 cardamoms- powdered
silver leaves/ slivered pistachios /silvered almonds (either one or a combination works well)
few drops of food coloring(red/yellow or green;in my house coconut mithai is associated with the color pink and so i tend to use the red but the golden also looks very pretty)

Keep a glass or a metal pan ready by greasing with a tsp of the ghee.In a thick bottom pan empty the contents of the condensed milk can and add to it the cardamom powder, 1 tsp ghee and the food color.
On a low flame mix these ingredients well and once the mix starts loosening up a little (about a couple of minutes) gradually add the shredded coconut with one hand and  go on mixing with the other hand.
I keep a lb of the coconut handy but do not use it all ,I only use as much as it takes to make a thick mix.

Mix till it all comes together for about a minute.Empty the contents into the greased dish and flatten with an oiled palm.Spread the silver leaves or the nuts and leave for about 30 minutes to set a little.Then cut into squares or diagonals.You can also make little ladoos (small balls) and top with slivered almonds or pistachios.
It keeps well  for about  a week provided it is not gobbled up by family members by then ;)

Monday, October 8, 2012


Hi All!!

Welcome to my Blog! :)

I love to cook and have started this blog because of my daughter (especially, since she is getting married and I want her to have my recipes), friends, family, and all those around the world who would like the recipes that I make. I hope you all enjoy and do feel free to leave me a comment or send me an e-mail (click on the about me section for that).

With the Festive season approaching, I decided to start my blog with a sweet recipe. I like to make different sweets during Diwali (the Indian festival of lights) and this khajan ji mithai (Sindhi way of saying "Cashew sweet") has been an all-time Sindhi favorite. It does not contain any milk or milk products and stays good for 3 to 4 weeks. Once you get the hang of making the sugar syrup, it is a matter of minutes and the mithai is ready.

1 lb cashew powdered fine (I buy broken unsalted cashews and grind them in the chopper)
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsps ghee (clarified butter)
the seeds of 5 cardamoms powdered
1 1/2 cups water
few silver leaves (edible silver foil) or sliced pistachios for decorating

Take a wide pan and add sugar, water, ground cardamom and 1 tsp ghee.
Over high heat let it come to a rolling boil and let it boil till it reaches 1 string consistency.
The way to test the string is dip a spoon in the syrup and dip your forefinger in the teaspoon
and with your thumb and forefinger see if the syrup creates a string.
Use caution as the syrup is hot.

While the syrup is being made take the balance 1 tsp ghee and grease a flat glass or metal pan.
As soon as the syrup reaches the one string consistency, lower the heat to very low and add the cashew powder. Stir very well till the mixture adheres together and leaves the sides of the pan (about a couple of minutes). Immediately transfer to greased dish and with an oiled palm flatten the mix
till smooth and shiny. Be careful as the mixture is very hot. If you cannot use your palm, use the bottom of an oiled glass.

Sprinkle the pistachio slivers or spread the silver leaves and leave to cool for 15 minutes. Then cut into squares or diagonals. When completely cool, store in airtight containers. In cooler weather you can store it at room temperature for about 2 weeks and then keep the rest in the fridge and bring it to room temperature before eating. In warmer weather store it in the fridge. (Cautionary note: if you use silver leaves, the mithai should NOT be placed in the microwave EVER! If no silver leaves were used, the mithai can be microwaved for about 10 seconds on High to be brought to room temparature.)