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Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Gulgule / Sweet Fritters Recipe from leftover Sugar syrup

Gulab Jamun and Rasgullas are traditional and irresistible Indian desserts soaked in sugar syrup . These are either made at home or bought ready made,  commonly during festivals and special occasions. Usually both these sweets are finished very fast and left behind is lots of Sugar Syrup . Can we reuse this syrup ??? This was the question raised by one of my dear friend Saloni and I am sure many of you also must have wondered this . The answer is off course yes.

There are many ways to use this leftover Sugar syrup . You can use the syrup to make Shakarparas , Sweet Puris , Pan cakes, Chirote , Sweet chutneys , Pickles , double ka Meetha , in Halwa or Kesari bhaat and the list is endless.

I generally make whole wheat Pancakes or Pooris out of this Syrup as my son has a sweet tooth. Never thought of  posting it. This time again some syrup from Gulab Jamuns was left , so made this sweet fritters and managed to click some pictures before they vanished!

Gulgule are small , golden brown sweet fritters made in North India. These are genearally made by making a batter of whole wheat flour , Jaggery  and water or milk. Small dollops of this mixture are deep fried and served hot or cold. 1-2 over ripe Bananas are sometimes added to the Gulgulla batter. Gulgule are made generally in cold winters or on during Monsoon season. But one can enjoy this easy peasy sweet treats any time .

Ingredients: Makes 15-20 medium size  Gulgule
  • 1 Cup whole Wheat flour 
  • 3/4 Cup leftover Sugar Syrup
  • 1 tsp Fennel Seeds
  • Pinch of Baking Soda
  • Oil for frying
Method :
  1.  In a mixing bowl take whole wheat flour and fennel seeds. Add the leftover sugar syrup and mix properly. Now add sufficient water or milk to make a batter which has a consistency similar to that of fritter (Pakoda) batter.

   2.  Set aside this mixture for at least half and hour. Now again beat the mixture well until no lumps are seen , add little water if required. Add a pinch of Baking Soda and mix . The batter is ready. Now heat sufficient oil in a small frying wok (kadhai) . Make small dollops of the batter using 2 spoons and dip into hot oil.

  3.  The Gulgule will immediately pop up and float on the oil surface. (Make sure you have taken enough oil for deep frying , if the oil is less, the Gulgule instead of popping up with stick to the base of the pan and will be flat in shape). Deep fry the Gulgule in small batches until golden brown in colour on all sides. Do not over crowd the pan . Remove the Gulgule with a slotted ladle on absorbent paper.

   4.  Serve hot or cold . Enjoy this crisp on outside and soft and chewy from inside, Gulgule along with Masala Chai or savoury snacks or just like that. I served them with Spicy Potato Salad .

  If you are looking for some more recipes made from leftover food, do check out my Instant Chapati ladoo made from leftover chapati and Pineapple fried rice recipe made from leftover cooked rice.

Monday, 28 September 2015

Ragi / Fingermillet Chocolate Milk Shake / Healthy Kids Recipe

Finger Millet , also known as Ragi or Nachni is  considered one of the most nutritious cereals. Ragi is a rich source of Calcium , Iron , Protein, Fiber and other minerals. The cereal has a low fat content and contains mainly unsaturated fat. It is easy to digest and does not contain gluten; people who are sensitive to gluten can easily consume Finger Millet.
Source: http://naturopathycure.com/Health-Benefits-of-Finger-Millet-%28Ragi%29.php

Ragi porridge is a very nutritious baby food . My son enjoyed the sweet Ragi porridge daily until the age of 2 yrs. But now that he is grown up, also have changed his likes and dislikes. I have already posted my Baked Fingermillet Crackers recipe earlier. This was a hit at my place and now it was a turn of some sweet drink , So thought of adding Ragi to his favourite Chocolate Milk shake. On browsing , I found a similar recipe here , where ragi flour and cocoa powder were cooked and then added to the milk shake. I liked the idea, added some of my twists to the recipe and my son enjoyed it happily.

Ragi Chocolate Milk shake is one of the best way to add this nutritious cereal to our diet. It can be served in the morning at the breakfast table or as a refreshing treat after school or work. In this recipe the Ragi flour is dry roasted in a pan to remove the raw taste and then as we do for porridge,  milk is added to this flour and cooked. Here I have added Cocoa powder to the milk before adding it to the Ragi flour. The whole mixture is cooked nicely until a solid mass is formed. On cooling this is added to the blender with chilled milk and sugar. I add some chocolate chips also to the milk shake just before serving to get the chocolaty bite.

Ingredients: Serves 2 tall glasses
Measurement - 1 cup = 200 ml
  • 3 tbsp Ragi / Finger-millet flour
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened Cocoa powder
  • 2 cups Milk 
  • 1 tbsp Chocolate Chips (optional)
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract (optional)
  • Sugar to taste ( I have used 4 tbsp, as my son has a sweet tooth)
  1. Mix the Cocoa powder in 1/2 cup milk and set aside. In a sauce pan dry roast the Ragi powder on a low flame for 1-2 minutes. This is to remove the raw taste. 

  2.  Add the Cocoa powder and milk mixture to this Ragi flour and stir very well , making sure no lumps are left and keep scrapping the edges and bottom of pan to avoid the mixture from burning . Cook on low flame until we get a semi solid mass.

  3. Put off the flame and let this mass cool down. Now in a blender, blend remaining chilled milk , Sugar , Vanilla extract and this Ragi Cocoa mass .

 4.   Add some Chocolate chips while serving the Ragi Chocolate Milk shake . Enjoy this healthy chocolaty treat with loved ones !!!

If you are looking for some more healthy beverages , check out my Strawberry Milk Shake , Rambutan and Banana Milk shake , Miracle Juice , Apple Mint Green Tea , Dragon fruit and Banana Smoothie

Friday, 25 September 2015

Sev / Murukku - Indian Savoury Snack Recipe / Tea time snacks

Murukku or Sev is a traditional savoury snack popular in India. I make it very often as my son loves this very much. In fact this was his first snack as a kid. This is also one of the items made during the Diwali snacks(faral) menu. One of my friend in Hyderabad, Shubhashini introduced this dish to me.

It is prepared usually with various combinations of rice flour , split chickpeas flour, Black gram (Urad dal)flour etc and spiced up with Chili powder, Carom seeds , Asafoetida .This recipe uses Rice, white Urad dal and Sago. I roast the Rice and  skinned and split Black gram (white Urad dal) and then add Sago (Sabudana) and grind it together either in a grinder or flour mill to flour. This flour can be stored for about 6 months in refrigerator, so I make it in bulk and just spice the required amount of  flour with red chili powder and carom seeds whenever wish to have this crunchy snacks . You may also use the ready made flour of rice and Urad dal available in market and then add sago powder to it.

It is usually prepared with a snack maker ( murukku) maker and can be prepared in different shapes using different designs plates provided with this snack maker.

Ingredients for flour:
  • 4 cups Rice 
  • 1 cup White Urad dal(skinned and split Black Gram)
  • 1/4 Cup Sago (Sabudana) 
Dry roast the Rice and Urad dal in a wok until aromatic and light pink in colour. Let it cool down, add the sago and grind all this into a flour either at home in a grinder or in a flour mill. Use 1 cup of this flour .

Other ingredients:
  • 1-2 tsp Red Chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp Carom seeds
  • 2 tbsp ghee / oil
  • Salt to taste 
  • Oil for deep frying
  1. In a mixing bowl, take 1 cup of the mixed flour, add 2 tbsp hot oil or ghee to the flour, Salt , Red chili powder and Carom seeds. Mix the ingredients nicely and then add enough warm water to knead the flour into a semi soft dough.

      2.  Apply oil to your palms and shape the dough into a cylinder shape to fit inside the snack maker. Now heat up Oil in a frying wok (Kadhai) and then lowering the flame to medium,  squeeze out the sev dough through the snack maker into the oil carefully in circular motion.

     3.  Stop pressing the murukku maker, once enough dough is squeezed out. Now fry the sev from both sides until golden brown in colour.

      4.   The oil stops bubbling, once the sev is done. Remove the sev with a slotted ladle and let it drain on a tissue paper. 

  5.  Make all the sev in a similar manner and transfer it to air tight container on cooling.  Serve this delicious and crunchy snacks with tea or enjoy it as it is.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Eggless Ladi Pav / Indian Bread Bun Recipe / Homemade soft and fluffy Pav Buns using Convection Microwave Oven

For a non baker like me , there is no greater joy than seeing my homemade Pav Buns turn out so soft and fluffy !!! Baking is like an addiction...once I overcame my fear of baking, I made a point to keep experimenting and trying hands on different baked dishes. I will admit that not all my attempts turn out to be successful , but I consistently keep  attempting...thanks to my family for bearing with all my experiments .. After getting satisfactory results with my egg less recipes like  Choco Muffins , Moist Carrot Cake, Oatmeal Cookies, it was time for this Ladi Pav.

Pav is an Indian soft bread loaf which is served as accompaniment with many lip smacking dishes like Vada Pav  , Misal pav , Pav Bhaji , Kachi Dabeli etc. I love to have it with Garlic Chutney and Kanda Bhaji with Masala Chai specially during Monsoon season.

This is my first attempt to make the ladi pav and so I blindly followed the recipe from here without making any changes and I am very happy with the way this egg less Pav buns puffed up and turned out to be super soft. Only i had to alter the temperature and time of baking, as the original recipe had temperature to be followed for an Oven and I used Convection Microwave oven for baking this Pav. Also I brushed the pav dough balls twice with milk to get the brown crust , once at the beginning of baking and second midway during baking .

Ingredients: Makes 16 small Pav Buns
  • Plain Flour / Maida - 2 Cups / 250 gm
  • Milk - 3/4 Cup + 1 1/2 Tbsp / 190 ml
  • Salt - 1 Tsp / 5 gm
  • Butter - 4 Tsp / 20 gm
  • Milk Powder - 1 1/2 Tbsp /15 gm
  • Instant Yeast - 2 Tsp / 8 gm
  • Sugar - 1 Tbsp / 15 gm
  • Milk and Butter for brushing
  • Maida / Flour for dusting
  • Oil for Greasing
  1.  First and important step in this recipe before we proceed towards making dough is to activate the yeast. This is done by adding sugar and yeast to the warm milk in a bowl. Mix well and keep the bowl undisturbed for about 10 minutes, until the yeast mixture becomes frothy.

   2. On a clean kitchen platform, take the Maida, add Salt and Milk powder to it , mix well and make a well in the center . Add the frothy yeast mixture to the well.

    3.  Make a dough of this. Initially it will resemble a sticky paste. Add butter to this and start kneading .

    4.  Slowly this sticky paste will convert to a dough . This process will take 15 minutes of kneading. Use scraper to scrap the dough, that sticks to the working platform and keep kneading.

    5.  After 15 minutes of kneading , transfer this dough to a big bowl . Cover and keep aside for about 1 hour. It will double in volume after 1 hour.

  6.  Dust your hands with maida and punch down the dough , remove out of the bowl and knead for 1 minute. Add very little Maida, if the dough is very sticky.

   7.  Now divide the dough into equal portions. I have made small 16 portions, you may make 9 medium size portions of the dough using a knife or spatula. Now pinch up that portion and shape into a round shape. Take 8" square cake tin and grease it with oil, place the shaped dough very near touching each other.

    8.  Now cover the tin with a damp cloth and keep aside for 45 minutes. Preheat the oven at 200 degree Celsius for 10 minutes if baking in an oven. For convection Microwave, no need of preheating.The dough balls will rise up further . So remove the cloth carefully after 30 minutes so that the dough does not stick to the cloth. After 45 minutes brush the pav balls gently with milk.

   9.  Gently place the cake tin in the oven and bake for 15 minutes at 200 degree Celsius. For me it took 20 -25 minutes at 230 degree Celsius in a Convection Microwave. If the buns do not turn brown cook for some more time but keep a watch on the pav after 15 minutes, as time and temperature varies from oven to oven.

  10.  Take the bun out of the oven and brush the top part with butter . Keep aside and let it cool down completely. Now gently run a knife through the edges and remove the ladi pav. Enjoy it with any of your favourite dish like Bhaaji , Misal or Vada paav  or just have it with any chutney.

Pav Bhaji

  • If the yeast mixture does not become frothy after activation, discard it and again restart or use another brand of yeast culture.
  • The temperature of milk used for activation of yeast should be proper lukewarm . If it is too hot the yeast culture will dye and if it is cold the Yeast will not be activated.
  • The dough before the first rise should be sticky, this ensures that you will get soft and fluffy Pav.

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

21 veggie stir fry / Ganesh Chaturthi Recipe

There is very much significance of number 21 in Lord Ganesha's pooja. 21 different types of offerings are made to please Lord Ganesha . 21 blades of Durva grass and  21 Modaks / ladoos as bhog are Ganesha's favourite. Apart from these offerings , we make a special vegetable stir fry using 21 different vegetables on the Ganesh Chaturthi day and on the day of Ganesha idol immersion (visarjan) day.

This veggie stir fry is very healthy and delicious dish. As the dish is made as an offering to Lord Ganesha as Naivedhyam , it is an Onion Garlic free recipe. The dish goes well with Poori or chapati.

We can select any 21 vegetables of our choice for this recipe . I have used ( Carrots, Green pea , Broccoli, Capsicum , Fenu greek leaves , Spinach, Tomatoes , Potatoes, Curry leaves, Bottle gourd , Ridge gourd , French beans , Cauliflower, Bitter gourd , Lady finger , Cabbage , Coriander leaves , Mint leaves , Green chili , Cucumber and Snake gourd).  The veggies are finely chopped and stir fried with freshly ground whole spices , Peanut powder and scrapped fresh Coconut.

  • 2 cups of 21 vegetables , washed and finely chopped. 
  • 1 tbsp whole spices freshly roasted and ground ( 2 cloves , 2-3 black peeper corn, 1 bay leaf , 1 small stick cinnamon , 1 tsp caraway seeds)
  • 2 tbsp scrapped fresh Coconut
  • 1 tbsp Cumin-Coriander powder
  • 1 tbsp roasted peanut powder 
  • 1/2 inch piece of Ginger
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder 
  • pinch of Asafoetida
  • Salt to taste
  • 2-3 tbsp Oil
  1. Make a paste of Coriander leaves, Mint leaves, Ginger and Green chilies using a grinder. Heat up oil in a wok on medium heat. Add Cumin seeds. Once the seeds crackle, add Curry leaves and this paste and stir nicely. Now add finely chopped Tomatoes, followed by Asafoetida and turmeric powder. Stir fry the tomatoes very nicely for about 1 minute.

    2.  Now add all the veggies except the leafy vegetables. Mix well and cover cook the veggies for 5-7 minutes until they are 75 % done.

   3.  Now add in the finely chopped leafy vegetables . Stir fry for 1-2 minutes and add the salt , red chili powder , cumin coriander powder, freshly roasted and ground spice powder and mix very well.

   4. Lastly add the peanut powder and scrapped fresh coconut , stir fry for a minute and put off the flame.

  5. Garnish with scrapped coconut serve hot with Poori or Chapati.

If you are looking for some more dishes offered to Lord Ganesha do check out my Dry Fruit Ladoo , Fried Modak , Nariyal Burfi , Ukadiche Modak / Steamed Modak , Suji and Coconut Ladoo , Anarsa, Shahi lapsi Kheer