Shahi Aloo (Potatoes cooked in rich creamy sauce)

Shahi Aloo is a rich creamy curry, with onions, tomatoes and cashew puree cooked in butter and cream. In this recipe I have used potatoes and scooped balls with melon scooper, but you can cut medium dices of potatoes or use baby potatoes. This curry is well balanced and is not too sweet or spicy, but you can adjust the spiciness or sweetness according to your preferences. It is very easy to prepare and is paired well with Naan, Roti’s or Jeera Rice.

Ingredients:

500 grams potatoes

1 medium onion Large cubes

2 Large tomatoes Large Cubes

1 tbsp Kasoori Methi (Dry Fenugreek Leaves)

½ tsp Turmeric powder

1 tbsp Red chilli powder

7 Cloves

½ inch Cinnamon stick

2 Black Cardamoms

1 tbsp Ginger Garlic Paste

Salt to taste

1 Cup Cream

Oil for Frying and 2 tbsp for cooking

½ cup butter

20-25 cashews

2-3 saffron strands

Directions:

Prep:

Peel the potatoes, scoop medium sized balls and place it in salt water. Cut onions and Tomatoes in large Cubes. Keep aside.

In a pot heat water enough to cover the potatoes. When water is hot, add potatoes and cook until half done. Remove and keep aside.

In the same water add onions, tomatoes and cashews and cook until onions are fully cooked. Remove and keep aside.

In a pan heat oil and fry the potatoes and remove in a bowl with kitchen tissues (this will help to absorb excess oil)

Curry/Gravy:

Heat a kadhai / sauce pot, add butter. When butter is hot, add ginger garlic paste and cook until the raw smell is gone.

Add cloves, cinnamon stick and black cardamom and saute until you smell the aroma of spices. Add kasoori methi and saute on high flame for a minute.

Add tomato puree and cook on medium flame till it starts boiling, stirring occasionally so it doesn’t stick at bottom of pot. Add red chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt. Mix well.

Add potatoes and cook on low flame, so the potatoes absorb all the flavour. In a bowl Add 1 tbsp hot water and add saffron strands. Add this mixture to the curry. Mix. Add cream and cook on low flame.

Add 1 tbsp honey, adjust the seasonings according to your preferences. You can also add raisins and chopped almonds to the curry.

Serve with Naan, Roti or Jeera Rice.

Goli Pulao (Lamb Meatball Pilaf)

Goli Pulao also known as “Meatball Pilaf” is a rice preparation from Kolhapur. Traditionally Kolhapuri masala is added in this preparation, but we can use red chilli powder. The recipe I have shared here is a simple creamy rice preparation. If you like to make rice more spicy add some more green chillies and red chilli powder in the lamb mince and use less cream while preparing rice.

For video click on the link below:

Ingredients:

500 grams Lamb Mince

3 cups Basmati Rice

1 cup hot water

2 cup cream (35% M.F)

(Ratio of Rice to Liquid is 1:1, so adjust the ratio of water and cream according to your taste)

1 Large onion Chopped

1/2 tbsp green chillies chopped

1/2 tbsp ginger garlic paste

Salt to taste

1 tsp Garam Masala

1 tsp red chilli powder

1 Whole Egg beaten (acts a binding agent)

2 cups oil/ghee/clarified butter

(for frying meatballs, same oil can be used for rice)

100 grams cashew nuts

3 green cardamoms

4 cloves

2 black cardamoms

1 large bay leaf

1 tbsp cumin seeds

1 tsp cumin powder                                                                                   

3-4 saffron strands

Directions:

Mise-en-place

Chop onion and keep in a bowl. Chop green chillis. Beat 1 whole egg and Soak rice in water for at least 30 minutes. Soak the saffron strands in 1-2 tbsp of hot cream or water.

Meatballs preparation

In a bowl add lamb mince, add chopped onion, chopped green chillies, ginger garlic paste, garam masala, red chilli powder, beaten egg and salt. Combine well.

Make small balls of the mixture. In a kadhai, add oil/ghee/clarified butter. When oil is hot fry the meatballs and remove when done. In the same oil fry cashews and remove in a bowl.

Save the oil and use it to prepare rice. It will infuse flavour in the rice.

Rice Preparation

In a kadhai add 3-4 tbsp of oil. When oil is hot, add cloves, green cardamom, black cardamom, bay leaf and saute till aroma pops out. Add cumin seeds and let them crackle.

Add the rice (drain the water from the rice) and saute on medium flame for couple of minutes. Add cumin powder and saute for a minute.

Now add water and cream (the proportion of rice and liquid is 1:1, so you can adjust the quantity of water and cream according to your preferences) add salt, cashew nuts and saffron. Cook until rice is done.

Assemble rice and the meatballs as shown in the pics…garnish with cashews. serve with Raita

Stuffed Poached Pear

It’s said that it is not a real meal if it doesn’t end with desserts. French cookbooks did not exactly feature desserts but instead they had recipes of “Entremets” which means “Intervals”, dishes that were served between larger courses that could be sweet or savory. Back in the ancient civilizations people used to have fruits and nuts candied with honey.  Desserts today have become popular because of culinary experiments and technology. The recipe I am sharing today is motivated from my culinary journey. Hope you enjoy it and share your reviews.

Ingredients:

2 pears

½ cup chocolate chips

75 ml heavy cream

2 cups water

2 ½ cups sugar (2 cups for poaching and half cup for making caramel bits)

½ inch cinnamon stick

½ cup white wine

1 tsp oil (for ganache)

Directions

Syrup:

In a pot add water, sugar, white wine and cinnamon stick and let it simmer for 5 mins on medium flame.

Pears:

Peel the pear. Using a corer, core the pears (keep the steam as it looks more presentable) and place it into the syrup pot and cook it until it’s 80% done. Remove and refrigerate for 1-2 hours (You don’t want to cook the pear through as the heat trapped in the pear will cook the pear as it cools down). Refrigerate.

Ganache:

On a medium flame heat some water in a pot (you will place a bowl on top of the pot, so make sure the water does not touch the pot).

In another pan bring heavy cream to simmer, remove from heat and keep aside.

Place the chocolate chips in a stainless-steel bowl and place the bowl on top of the pot. When the chocolate chips are melted add the heavy cream and mix with a whisk. Add 1 tsp oil (it will give the ganache a silky texture). Refrigerate half of the ganache for half hour and leave the other half out (after it cools down it will solidify which will make it easy to pipe it into pears, while the one at room temperature will be used for plating). Yes, I know the velvety ganache has made you excited, but now comes the important part of making caramel bits, stuffing the pear and plating.

Caramel Bits:

In a pan take half cup of sugar and heat it on medium flame. When the sugar starts melting swirl it so it doesn’t burn on isolated spots and turns into light amber colour take it off the heat (keep an eye on the pan as once the sugar starts turning into colour, it will darken very fast). Pour it on a sheet pan and let it cool.

Once it cools down, break into large pieces and place it in a plastic bag and crush it using a rolling pin.

Stuffing the Pear:

Fill the piping bag with ganache and stuff the pear with the ganache. Refrigerate

Plating:

On a plate, put a tablespoon of ganache on the middle of the plate. Slightly tap it with a spoon (it will make a great presentation for your dessert. Pipe some whipping cream on top of ganache and place stuffed pear on top of whipping cream. Sprinkle caramel chunks and serve.