Alupatra

Snacks No Comments

Alupatra is a variety of samosa with potato filling. Once I’ve tasted it, I understood why it’s one of the most popular Indian dishes nowadays. You can add also some fresh panir cheese for diversity.

4 potatoes
2 tbsp grated coconut
2 tsp ginger, grated
2 pods hot pepper, sliced
1 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped
2 cups wheat flour
2 tsp sugar
1 ½ tsp salt
2 tsp sesame seeds
2 tsp garam-masala
½ tsp turmeric
¼ tsp red Cayenne pepper
½ cup water
2 tsp ghee butter
ghee or oil for flying-up in deep fat

1. First of all make a filling. Boil potatoes in their jackets and peel them. Mash potatoes together with grated coconut, all spices, hot pepper, sugar and 1 teaspoon salt.
2. Combine flour, turmeric, Cayenne pepper and ½ teaspoon salt in a big bowl. Rub ghee into flour. Pour in water and make dough. The dough must be tender and springy.
3. Roll out dough in shape of rectangular flat cake 3 mm thick. Place evenly potato blend on top. Collar dough.
4. Slice the roll: the slices should be ½ inch (1 cm) thick.
5. Heat ghee or oil in a deep-fryer or deep pan. Immerse slices into the fryer and cook 3-5 minutes until goldish color.

Delicious Indian snacks

Snacks No Comments

Today I want to say some words about Indian appetizers and snacks. They consist of many ingredients, such as potato, onion, spinach, chili, and can be called by right vegetarian dishes; they are cooked in rich spices and look very decorative. Indian appetizers can be served as a main dish or an addition to other courses. They will perfectly suit you if you want to snack between dinner and supper. I like to cook it for my children because they always want to filch something dainty from the kitchen. They are simply enraptured with these fragrant snacks; in my turn I’m glad to offer them more than a usual sandwich or even worse harmful chips.

indian-snacks.jpgA lot of Indian snacks are taken with chutney and tea. Some of them, for example pakora and seeval, can be cooked right away; samosa and kachori take more time, but no sooner you taste it than you forget a long cooking process at one stroke.

Many appetizers of Indian cuisine cannot be done without ghee, anyway I usually use it for frying-up. Once I tried to replace it with vegetable oil, but I’ve drawn a conclusion that snacks with ghee have much more exquisite taste.

Another component commonly used for Indian snacks is chickpea flour (also known as gram flour or besan). It has a special taste, and it’s easy to find in any oriental grocery.

Pickled salad

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This salad consists of bean and peas in a tasty marinade. Garam masala contained in the marinade makes it peculiarly delicious.

½ cup bean
2 cups bean-pods, sliced
6 cups cauliflower
1 cup green peas
2 cups oil
1 cup lemon juice
4 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon garam masala

1. Soak beans for 8 hours. Than cook it and pour out water.
2. Stew bean-pods and cauliflower, pour out water.
3. Combine beans with vegetables, add another ingredients and let it pickle for 2-3 hours.

Tomato dressing (recipe 1)

Chutney and dressings No Comments

I’ve never met a man who didn’t like tomatoes. This sappy vegetable, rather a berry is ideal for any dish, especially in the form of a dressing.

Tomato dressing

4 cups water
6 big tomatoes
½ cup butter
½ teaspoon asafoetida
½ teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1 teaspoon rosemary seeds
1 cup flour
8 cups milk
2 teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon turmeric

1. Bring water to a boil, add tomatoes and cook until they are soft.
2. Melt butter in a pan, fry asafoetida, fenugreek seeds and rosemary seeds.
3. Add flour and fry until the mass becomes goldish. Combine with stewed tomatoes, add milk and bring to a boil.
4. Add salt, black pepper and turmeric. Cook for 10-20 minutes.

Barley soup

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Barley belongs to the oldest cereal grains, cultivated by people. It’s reach in vitamin A, aneurin, calcium and phosphorus; barley lowers cholesterol level in blood. Indians advice to cook this soup for people suffering from gastrointestinal disturbance.

1 cup barley
4 quarts water
4 big tomatoes, sliced
½ pound celery, chopped
1 little carrot, sliced
1 sweet pepper, sliced
½ pound cauliflower, chopped
1 big potato, sliced
½ tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon turmeric
2 tablespoons butter
½ teaspoon thyme

1. Cook barley in the water until it’s done.
2. Combine with all ingredients and cook for 15-20 minutes.

Cuddy

Chutney and dressings 1 Comment

Cuddy is a widespread dressing in the North India. It’s spicy but soft enough thanks to yogurt and flour. You can use it for salads and vegetables.

3 tablespoons butter, ghee or oil
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
1 green chili, sliced
½ tablespoon fresh grate ginger
2 tablespoons flour
4 cups yogurt
1 cup water
1 ½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
½ turmeric

1. Melt butter and fry mustard, chili and ginger.
2. Add flour and fry until it’s hazelnut. Add water, salt, pepper and turmeric and bring to a boil.
3. Combine with yogurt and stir. Take dressing from the oven.

Avocado dressing

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This exotic dressing would be perfect for a steak, fried pork or chicken.

1 avocado
2 cups yogurt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 cup oil
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
½ teaspoon asafoetida
½ cup sesame seeds

Combine all ingredients, grind in a blender and dress salad.

Cabbage salad

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 Another name of this salad is “Thin reed”. Try it if you want to cook a spicy low-cal dish.

2 pounds cabbage, sliced
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
3 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons ghee
½ teaspoon asafoetida
¼ teaspoon turmeric
1 ½ tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons lemon juice

1. Melt ghee butter with the oil and fry mustard seeds and asafoetida. Reduce fire.
2. Add sugar, salt, lemon juice and turmeric. Stir slowly until sugar melts.
3. Combine cabbage with the condiment.

Interesting facts about Indian cuisine

INDIAN CUISINE 2 Comments

Indian cuisine is considered to be the most popular in the world after French and Chinese cuisines. Its distinguishing features are various dressings, herbs and spices as turmeric, cumin, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, coriander, garlic, chili pepper and many others, which were worth their weight in gold long ago. Indians believe that spices help them to stay young and sprightly. I suppose the most popular Indian spice for us is curry, but I was surprised during my journey through India when I got to know that in actual fact curry is not what we used to understand by this word. It’s not a mixture of different spices but a tree, which leaves are commonly used by cooking.

Indian cuisine

Christopher Columbus put out to the sea to find a new way to India exactly for spicery, but he discovered America. Well, like Columbus I was eager to visit this ancient country, of course not only to partake true Indian food, rather to get in touch with its marvelous and enigmatic culture and see with my own eyes its exotic amenities. (Being an amateur photographer I always bring hundreds of photos of picturesque places, unusual for a western man pictures of eastern people). Inspired by my trip to India, I got interested in its history and philosophy more than ever and read some books and articles to learn more about its religion and traditions.

Hindus emphasize the food they eat, it’s sanctified by traditions and it has a great social meaning. For an Indian pious person the food is something more than just a process of calories assimilation. Indian cuisine is not only an art of cookery, but a philosophy as well. In accordance with Ayurveda, all the courses are divided into three groups: taamsic (food of ignorance), raajsic (food of passion) and saatvic (food of grace). Taamsic is an overdone, too hot or too cold food; raajsic food is too spicy and stimulating. The proper and balanced food is saatvic – it’s a harmony between salty and sweet, cold and hot, spicy and mild.

I always thought of India as of a homeland of vegetarianism. I was highly concerned with recipes of this wonderful country for a period of time over which I denied myself meat and eggs. The meat in India was used for food first in XVI century, under the influence of Persian conquerors. Up to present time it’s religiously forbidden to eat cattle meat at all. Even Moslem part of the population follows this tradition, though they use for food mutton and goat’s flesh. Meat courses are more common for northern regions.

Indian spices

Still there’s a one feature uniting northerners and southerners – using of yogurt, a plenty of legumes and vegetable courses together with rice or pilaw, dressed and flavored with aromatic spices. Proteins of legumes are of a high food value and vegetables contain no cholesterol. The most popular sweets are milk puddings, cookies and fritters. And as for drinks – the most favorite ones is tea (often served up with milk and sugar) and nimbu pani, made of lemon juice and water.

To my mind, Indian cuisine is indispensable for those people who try to lose weight with no effect. Healthy non-fat Indian courses can never be insipid or boring because of the broadest choice of spices and dressings you can flavor them with. I hope you enjoy my recipes!

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