Saturday, May 18, 2013

Masala semiya (Pakistani style)

300 g thin vermicelli (Its much thinner than Indian variety)
1 large onion - finely chopped
4 medium sized tomato  - finely chopped
1 cup peas
2 green chilli - chopped
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp coriander powder
1 - 1 1/2 cups of water
2-3 Tbsp oil
1 tsp grated ginger
2 Tbsp finely chopped coriander/kasoori methi

1) Heat oil in a pan. Add cumin seed and wait for it to splutter. Add onion and fry until it changes colour.
2) Add ginger, green chilli and fry for another minute.
3) Add tomato and fry for 3-4 minutes (tomato by now would have blended in). Add peas and fry for another minute
4) Make a thick paste of red chilli powder, turmeric powder, corainder powder and 1 Tbsp salt. Mix and fry for a minute. Lower the heat if it starts sticking to the bottom of the pan.
5) Add the vermicelli, add 1 cup of water initially - cover and cook on lowest setting for 3 minutes.
6) If water is not enough, and it feels a bit dry - sprinkle about 1/4 cup of water. Check for salt. Mix it up - cover and cook for another 3 minutes.
7) Garnish with coriander/kasoori methi
DONE!!! :)

1) Most Indian stores stock the Pakistani variety of vermicelli - its golden brown in colour and much more thinner than the Indian variety
2) I feel its easier if you crush the vermicelli in the packet before taking it out - it's much easier to mix in the pan once crushed.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Soya chunks biryani

15 soya balls - soaked in water for 20 minutes
1 cup finely chopped spinach
1/2 peas
1/2 onion - finely chopped
1 tomato - finely chopped
2 cups basmati rice
1 cup thick coconut milk
3 cups water
3 green chilli
1/2 Tbsp ginger garlic paste
3 cloves
Seeds from 2 cardamom pods
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1/2 tsp coriander powder
Pinch of asafoetida
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
1/4 tsp pepper powder
2 slices of bread - cut into 1 cm cubes
1 Tbsp coriander leaves - finely chopped
1-2 Tbsp ghee
2-3 Tbsp oil

1) Wash basmati rice, add 3 cups water, coconut milk, 1/2 tsp salt and cook (I used microwave). Keep aside
2) Squeeze out water from soya balls and keep aside. If you have the time, halve it - so that it can absorb flavors better. Heat ghee in a small frying pan, fry bread pieces and keep aside
3) In a mortar, take cumin seeds, cloves, cardamom seeds, fennel seeds and pound - until it has broken into pieces (need not be fine)
4) Heat oil in a pan, add the coarsely ground spices from step 3 and wait for it to splutter. Add onion and fry until its starts to turn golden brown.
5) Add green chilli, soya chunks and fry until the chunks start to change colour. Add ginger garlic paste and fry for another minute.
6) Add tomato and fry until it blends well with the rest. Reduce heat to medium - add spinach, peas and fry for a minute.
7) Add the remaining spice powder, 1/2 tsp salt and mix.
8) Once the rice has cooled a bit, mix it with above. Check for salt. Add more of red chilli/pepper powder if you like it more spicy.
9) Mix fried bread pieces and garnish with coriander.