Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Moong Dal Kachoris - Moong Lentil Filled Puffs

This is a savoury that I always try to make for Diwali ,to counter all the sweets :)
and also because it is so festive.
It takes some time and effort but is absolutely worth it.
This quantity makes about 50/55 pieces.


For the shell:

4 cups flour (maida)
4 tbsps ghee or butter
salt to taste
about 1 & 1/4 cups warm water

For the filling:

1 & 1/2 cups yellow moong dal
1 tsp turmeric (haldi)
1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
2 tbsps ghee
salt to taste
1 tbsp red chilli powder
1 tbsp powdered cumin (ground jeera)
1 tbsp fennel seeds lightly crushed (saunf)
2 tbsps dry mango powder (amchur)
You can substitute lemon juice for the amchur, but the taste lent by amchur is
a pot of water to boil the dal

3 to 4 cups oil for frying.


Add the salt and ghee to the flour and mix well.Now gradually
add the warm water and knead the dough till smooth and firm.
You may not need all the water so add gradually.
Cover and keep aside for about half an hour.

Soak the dal for 5/6 hours.

Now boil the pot of water and add the turmeric to it.
when the water comes to a rolling boil, add the dal and
boil for about 10 /12 minutes till soft  to touch.

Do not overboil as it will get mushy.It should be cooked
but the grains should be separate.
Now drain well in a colander.

Heat the 2 tbsps ghee in a pan and add the cumin seeds.
Let it splutter and turn golden.

Now add the fennel, the boiled dal, the salt, ground cumin, chilli powder and the amchur.
Mix well but lightly so that the spices are well mixed but the dal does not turn mushy.

Now comes the time to roll and fill and assemble the kachoris.
Divide the dough into small balls.

Roll them out into small discs.

Fill with 1 tbsp of the filling and bring the edges together.

Then lightly flatten and make sure that the edges are totally sealed.

Heat oil in a pan and slowly slide 4/5 of the kachoris and fry on a
slow/medium flame till golden on both sides.

While you fry one batch, roll and fill the next batch.
Make sure you do not fry on high flame as it will remain uncooked
on the inside.
Serve hot with green chutney or sweet tamarind chutney.
Tastes good on its own also.
You can store in the fridge for about two weeks.
To serve, warm in the oven.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Karanji - Coconut stuffed treats


It is Diwali time again, time to make sweets and savouries, time to light up
diyas, time to decorate with rangoli and torans, time to rejoice, time to
spend with loved ones.
I started of by making Karanji's , a must in Maharashtrian households come Diwali.
This sweet is one of my personal favourites.
There are two ways to make these, one with a dry filling and one with a moist.
I make the one with the dry filling.

This quantity makes 40 Karanji's.


For the cover:
3 cups flour (maida)
3/4 cup semolina (rawa)
1 cup warm milk
4 tbsps ghee or oil

For the filling:
2 cups  dry shredded coconut (unsweetened)
3 tbsps white poppy seeds(khus khus)
1 tbsp white sesame seeds (til)  (optional)
6/ 8 tbsps chopped nuts (almonds, cashews)
2/3 tbsps golden raisins
8/10 tsps brown sugar or grated gur
(i added 8 tsps.You can taste and sweeten as per your taste).

about 4 cups of oil for deep frying

Mix the flour and the semolina and add the ghee.Mix till it
resembles bread crumbs.Using about 3/4 cup of the milk
knead the dough to a firm texture (not hard).Knead till smooth.
Cover and keep aside for about half an hour.

In the meantime, dry roast all the ingredients for the filling on a slow flame,
except the sugar.

Roast till light golden and you get a nice aroma .
Now turn off the flame and add the sugar and mix well.

Now make small balls of the dough.

Roll these into small discs.

I roll about five at a time.
Moisten the edges with warm milk.
Now lift the disc carefully in your hands and fill
with one tbsp of the filling.

Now seal the edges.

Now crimp the edges with a fork.


Or you can delicately fold the edges.

Now heat the oil in a pan and do not let it smoke.
On a low/medium flame fry 4/5 of them at a time.

By the time you fry one batch, you can roll and stuff the next batch.
When they puff up, gently turn them over.Fry till golden on both sides.

Let cool completely and then store in an airtight container.

Do not fry on high flame as they will not cook from inside and will
not be crisp.
Stays good for at least  two weeks if you dont finish eating it in the meantime :)