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Thursday, 28 January 2016

Bajrichi Bhakri / Bajra Roti / Pearl Millet Flat Bread / Gluten-free Recipe

 Bajrichi Bhakri or Bajra Roti is an Indian flat bread made from wholesome and healthy Pearl Millet (Bajra) flour. Bajrichichi Bhakri is the specialty of Maharashtra and it goes well with many of the curries and gravy dishes. Pearl Millet being a Gluten-free grain this flat bread is good option for those who are gluten intolerant. As Bajra produces heat in the body, it is best to consume this bhakri in winter season.

Pearl Millet ( Bajra) has rich composition of proteins and minerals and has several health benefits. It has the highest protein content for any grain. It contains several essential minerals like phosphorous, Zinc , magnesium etc. It contains essential vitamins and amino acids, which contribute to its therapeutic properties.
source: http://ourhealthyway.com/health-benefits-of-pearl-millet-bajra/

As this flour is gluten free, it is difficult to roll it like thin chapati. So knead the dough in warm water. Also ideally, in Maharashtra the dough ball is not rolled using a rolling pin, it is just patted and moved on flour using the palms of hands. This requires practice, so those who do not know the technique, can place the dough ball between 2 plastic sheet and roll delicately with a rolling pin. I happened to visit my Mums place few days back , have clicked the pics when she made the Bajri bhakri for me :)

Ingredients: Makes 2 Bhakris
  • 1 cup Bajra (Finger Millet) flour
  • Salt to taste
  • Warm water as per need
  • 2 tbsp Sesame seeds (optional)
  1. In a mixing bowl take the finger millet flour , add sesame seeds and salt and mix well. Now using warm water, knead into a soft dough. 

  2. Divide the dough into two parts. You may add some more sesame seeds if you wish. Now dust the working surface with some Bajra flour , take one portion of dough ball and flatten it using your palms. Now pat it using your palms to flatten it . This is the traditional way. Those who do not know this technique, apply some oil on 2 plastic sheets and place the dough ball between the two sheets and delicately roll with the help of a rolling pin.

   3. Now pick up the bhakri delicately and place it over the heated tava or pan. Apply little water all over the upper side of the bhakri with hand . Now cook the bhakri on medium heat from both the sides, until light brown spots appear on the bhakri.

   4. At the last roast the bhakri on the open flame for few seconds and take it off.  Apply butter over it. Serve the nutritious and tasty Bajri chi Bhakri with any gravy dish or dal of your choice. In Maharashtra it is generally served with Zunka ( a spicy dry gram flour preparation).

  Bajrichi Bhakri can be served with

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Zunka - Authentic Maharashtrian Recipe

Zunka is a traditional Maharashtrian dish which is usually paired with and tastes best with a thick flat bread made of Bajra known as Bhakri. Zunka Bhakri comprises a daily diet of people in rural part of Maharashtra, especially the farmers . They carry Zunka Bhakri as Nhyari( Breakfast) to their farms.

Zunka is a dry version of famous Pithala (another Maharashtrian delicacy) . Zunka is a spicy and delicious preparation of Besan (gram flour). Lots of garlic, Chilies and Onions are added to this preparation. A very simple and easy to follow recipe .

Zunka is traditionally served with Bajra Bhakri , Onions, Green chilies , Raw Mango Pickle and with Garlic Chutney or Sesame Seeds Chutney. Refined oil is added over Zunka while eating. Zunka Bhakri also happens to be favourite dish of my dear friend Kajal and i would like to dedicate this post to her.

  • 1 Cup Gram Flour (Besan)
  • 2 Onions finely chopped
  • 3-4 Garlic pods chopped
  • 2 green chilies chopped
  • 1 red chili 
  • 1/4 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • Pinch of Asafoetida ( Hing)
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 2 tsp red Chili Powder
  • 3 tbsp Oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Fresh Coriander leaves for garnishing
  1. In a wok , heat up the oil on medium heat. Add the Mustard seeds, once they splutter add the Cumin seeds. Let the Cumin seeds crackle, now add the green Chilies and red chilies followed by the chopped garlic. Saute for a while and add Hing and Turmeric powder.

   2.  Now add the chopped Onions and half of the Coriander leaves. Saute until the onions turn translucent.

   3. In a mixing bowl mix the gram flour, red chili powder. Add about 2 cups of water little at a time as you whisk the flour . There should be no lumps in the batter. The batter should be like the one we use for making Fritters ( pakodas). Add this batter over the Onions in the wok. 

   4. Add in salt and mix the mixture very well. Lower the flame and keep it stirring. Stir until the mixture thickens and starts leaving the pan. At this stage cover the pan and cook for another 2-3 minutes on a low flame. Put off the flame and garnish with chopped coriander leaves.

   5.  Serve the Zunka with Bhakri , Onion, Chili and  Mango Pickle

 Hope you all like this simple recipe of delicious Zunka and would try it out . Do let me know how it turned out . 

For more Maharashtrian recipes, do check out my posts on

Sunday, 24 January 2016

Sweet Potato Chat / Shakarkand ki Chat - North Indian Street Food Recipe

Sweet Potato chat or Shakarkand ki Chat is a very healthy snacks recipe. Healthy because it is oil free and also as it is made from one of the healthiest plant food - Sweet Potato. It is a very common street food in Delhi, specially in Winter season.

 A lip smacking and irresistible snacks which can be made very easily at home. You can either bake or boil the sweet Potatoes to make this chat. The chat gets tangy flavor from the lemon juice and the chat masala and the sweetness from the sweet Potatoes . Addition of Pomegranate seeds make the chat colorful and also gives nice crunchy bite. Have added a tangy and spicy Mint chutney to this chat as well. If making for fast (Vrat)  do not put Chat Masala and Black Salt.

Sweet Potatoes pack a powerful nutritional punch. They have got over 400% of your daily needs for vitamin A in one medium spud, as well as loads of fiber and potassium. they have got more grams of natural sugars than regular potato but more overall nutrients with fewer calories.
source: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/281438.php

  • 3-4 Sweet Potatoes
  • Hand full of fresh Mint leaves
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp of Chat masala
  • 1 Green Chili
  • 1/2 inch piece of Ginger
  • Rock Salt to taste ( Sendha Namak)
  • Black Salt to taste (Kala Namak)
  • 2-3 tbsp of Pomegranate seeds
  1.  Wash the sweet Potatoes well in running water to remove all the dirt. Now boil them in a pressure cooker for 2 whistles. The Sweet Potatoes should not be over cooked as they will become mushy. If baking, poke the Sweet Potatoes with fork from all sides, this is to allow the steam to escape and avoid the tuber from exploding. Bake them at 400 degree Fahrenheit for 40 minutes. Pass a toothpick in the centre of the tuber to check for the doneness.   

    2.  Peel the tuber on cooling down and roughly chop into bite size chunks.

   3.  For the Mint chutney, grind the Mint leaves, green Chili, Ginger and 1 tbsp lemon juice to paste in a grinder.

  4. Take the Sweet Potato Chunks in a mixing bowl and drizzle the Mint chutney over it followed by the remaining 1 tbsp Lemon juice.

   5. Sprinkle Chat Masala, Rock salt and Black salt and toss well or mix with a spoon, taking care not to mash the pieces.

   6. lastly arrange in the individual serving bowls and garnish with Pomegranate seeds and enjoy !


    For more similar recipes, do check mu posts on

Friday, 22 January 2016

Vegetarian Broccoli Rice Recipe

Broccoli is considered among the world's healthiest foods for its numerous health benefits . It is not only rich in fiber, minerals and vitamins but is also low in calories.

I love Broccoli for many other reasons also apart from its countless health benefits. The first reason being that it is a happy vegetable in my house, secondly it cooks very fast and there are various ways in which we can use this super veggie.

Broccoli cane be blanched and had as a salad , it tastes awesome in soups , stir fries and pastas. I usually make Broccoli Cutlet and Broccoli stir fry for lunch box. This time i tried making a rice dish using Broccoli and it was a hit too !

 Broccoli rice is a very simple and quick fried rice dish. The liberal use of whole spices adds in the required spiciness and Mint leaves make the rice more flavorful. I have also used carrots along with Broccoli florets in this recipe which make the rice colorful and appealing. Can use left over rice also to make this dish. Hope you all will like this simple yet healthy and flavorful Broccoli Rice dish :)


  • 1 cup Basmati or long grain rice
  • 2 cup Broccoli florets
  • 1 large Carrot chopped length wise
  • 2 Onions sliced
  • 1/2 cup fresh Mint leaves
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice.
  • 2 green chilies
  • 1/2 inch ginger piece
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic
  • 1 small piece of Cinnamon stick
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 3-4 Black Pepper corn
  • 2-3 cloves
  • 1 Black Cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • Salt to taste
  • 3 tbsp Oil
  1. Wash the rice , drain and keep aside for at least 20 minutes. Now take a sauce pan and add 2 1/2 cups water to it. Heat it on a medium flame. Once the water starts boiling add the lemon juice , salt and soaked rice to it. Cook the rice uncovered on a low flame until it is almost done. The rice should be soft yet grain separated. Put off the flame and drain the water if any. Spread the rice and let it cool down. Fluff it with a fork and keep aside.

  2. Make a paste of green chilies, ginger and garlic using a grinder. In a wok, heat the oil on a medium flame. Add in the Cumin seeds. Once the seeds crackle , add the whole spices like Cinnamon, Black Cardamom, Clove and Black pepper corns one by one. Saute them until fragrant.

   3. Now add in the chili, ginger garlic paste and saute well. Once the raw smell of garlic is gone add the Onions and saute until the Onions turn golden brown.

  4. Add the Turmeric powder followed by the chopped Carrots and Broccoli florets. Sprinkle salt. (Be careful while adding salt as rice already has salt). Mix very well and saute for 1-2 minutes. Now cover cook for 3-4 minutes. Do not cook more as Broccoli looses its nutrition and taste when overcooked. The broccoli should be little crunchy.

  5. Add the cooked rice , sprinkle the garam masala powder and mint leaves and mix well. Take care not to break the rice grains while doing so. Cover cook for another 3-4  minutes on a low flame .

  6. Serve the Broccoli rice with any raita of your choice and enjoy this healthy and delicious dish with your loved ones !

   For more rice dishes do check my posts on 

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Matar Paneer Recipe

 Matar Paneer is a popular vegetarian North Indian dish in which Cottage Cheese ( Paneer) and green Peas are cooked in spicy onion tomato based gravy. It is usually served with plain Chapati, Naan or Jeera Rice

Paneer is loved in my house and i make this dish on regular basis , so i do not add any cream or cashews in this gravy to cut down the calories. Use of kasuri methi adds a nice flavor and aroma to the dish. Have made this gravy using home made soft Paneer and fresh green Peas. Also the use of freshly ground spice mix makes the gravy more flavorful. Can replace the Cottage Cheese with Tofu to make the dish Vegan. A very delicious dish with a simple and easy to follow recipe. 

  • 200-250 grams Paneer ( Cottage Cheese)
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen green Peas ( Matar)
  • 2 Onions chopped
  • 2 Tomatoes chopped
  • 1 Green chili
  • 3-4 Garlic pods
  • 1/2 inch ginger piece
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 2 tbsp Tomato sauce
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tsp Kasuri Methi ( dried Fenugreek Leaves)
  • Fresh Coriander leaves to garnish
  • Salt to taste
  • 3 tbsp Oil
  For the spice mix powder :
  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 3-4 Black Pepper Corns
  1. Make roughly square or diamond shape pieces of Paneer and keep aside. If using store bought frozen Paneer, place the Paneer cubes in warm water for 10-15 minutes. drain and pat dry on kitchen towel. This will make the Paneer cubes soft.

   2.  Dry roast the Cumin seeds, Coriander seeds and the Pepper corns and make a dry powder using a grinder and keep aside. Boil the green peas until soft. I have boiled them in a microwave. 

   3. In a wok heat 1 tbsp Oil and add the chopped Onions. Saute until the onions become translucent. Now add the finely chopped Tomatoes and saute again for 2-3 minutes. 

   4. Remove the sauteed Onions and Tomatoes and grind them to a paste in a grinder . Also grind the Green chilly , Ginger and Garlic to a paste. Keep aside. In the same pan heat remaining 2 tbsp Oil on a medium flame. Add Cumin seeds. Once the seeds sizzle add the green chili and ginger garlic paste. Saute well.

  5. Now add the Onion Tomato paste and mix well. Saute this mixture again for 1-2 minutes. Now add the Tomato sauce and mix well.

  6.  Add the Turmeric powder, Red Chili Powder and the spice mix powder. Mix well and saute the masala until it leaves the sides of the pan. 

   7.  At this stage add the boiled green peas.Mix well and saute for a minute or so. Now add the hot water and adjust the thickness of the gravy as per choice. Add salt, stir and give it a boil.

  8. Add the Paneer chunks into the gravy and simmer for 4-5 minutes. Lastly add the crushed Kasuri methi and garnish the gravy with  chopped fresh Coriander leaves. Put off the flame.

  9. Serve the delicious Matar Paneer gravy with Naan or Jeera Rice.

   For more Paneer dishes , check my posts on