Prawns Masala | प्रॉन्स मसाला | Jhinga Masala

Prawns Masala is one of the Maharashtra’s favourite seafood recipe. the recipe I have shared is influenced by my mother’s cooking. Try this recipe and let me know what you think. Total Time

Total Preparation: 45 mins

Murg Kalimirch (Black Pepper Chicken)

Chicken Kalimirch or Black Pepper Chicken is a onion and cashew based gravy spicy gravy, with added hung curd which gives it a rich texture and creamy taste. Traditionally It is made by marinating the chicken and then cooking it until ifs half done in tandoor. But in this recipe as it’s cooked at home we will cook the chicken in oven and preserve the juices which will add more flavour to the gravy. If you haven’t tried it yet, you should give it a try. Add black pepper powder and honey according to the required spiciness and sweetness.

Ingredients

500 grams boneless chicken

1 large onion cut into large cubes

10-15 cashews

3-4 green chillies

2-3 cloves

2-3 cardamom

½ inch cinnamon stick

8-10 whole black pepper

½ cup hung yogurt

3 tbsp yogurt

1 teaspoon black pepper powder (add more if required)

3 tbsp Butter

2 tsp ginger garlic paste

Honey as required

½ tsp cumin powder

½ tsp coriander powder

1 tsp garam masala powder

Salt to taste

Dash of lemon juice

Directions

The Mise-en-place

Cut onions into large cubes, cut green chillies, chicken into medium pieces. Marinate the chicken with yogurt (keep aside hung yogurt for later use), half the ginger garlic paste, salt, pepper powderand refrigerate for 5-6 hours.

In a small pot add 4 cups water, onion cubes, cashews and green chillies and simmer on medium flame until onions and cashews are fully done. (If cashews are not fully cooked, they wont blend into a fine paste). Blend into a fine paste.

The Curry

Set the oven on 400F. Line the tray with foil. Place the marinated chicken and cook until half done. Remove and set aside to rest.

In a pan place butter. When butter is hot add cloves, cardamon, cinnamon stick and whole peppercorns. Add in the onion and cashew paste, remaining ginger garlic paste and saute for 10-15 minutes on medium flame.

Now add chicken and fry on high heat for 10-12 minutes. Add hung yogurt mix well and cook for 4-5 minutes. Add in cumin powder, coriander powder, garam masala powder, salt and cook for 4-5 minutes.

Add water depending on required consistency of the gravy and cook until chicken is fully cooked. Finish it off with dash of lemon juice, honey as required sweetness and pepper powder. Serve with Garlic Naan, Roti or Rice.

Maharashtrian Pithla

Pithla is a traditional Maharashtrian dish prepared with chickpea flour / besan. It pairs up well with steamed rice or Bhakri, with quatered onions and green chilies. Every Maharashtrian household have their own recipe, some add curry leaves, others add spring onions etc. It resembles Kadhi, but its made without yogurt.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cup Besan / Chickpea Flour
½ red onion chopped
1 tsp cumin seeds
2-3 garlic pods sliced
3 green chilies chopped
¼ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp Kolhapuri masala / Red chili Powder
1 tbsp Ghee/ Clarified butter
3 tbsp oil
Handful of chopped Coriander

1 1/2 cup water (use more if needed)

Directions:

Chop onion and coriander. Slice garlic and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pot. When oil is hot add cumin seeds. When cumin seeds start to crackle add onions and saute for 2-3 minutes.

Add in garlic and green chilies. Saute for 2-3 minutes. Add turmeric powder and Kolhapuri Masala / red chili powder and mix.

Add water and bring it to boil. Add salt and mix in the chickpea flour / besan and whisk well. (if you dont like lumps, mix the besan in a bowl with some water and then put it in the pot)

Place a lid and let it cook. Add more water if needed. Add chopped coriander and mix.

Add a dallop of ghee / clarified butter. Serve it with Bhakri or steamed rice, quatered onions and green chili

Moong Pakoda / Moong Bhaji

Moong dal Pakoda or Moong Bhaji as known in Mumbai, is a popular snack from the streets of Mumbai. It is made from yellow moong lentils with addition of spices and herbs. In Dadar, we used to buy moong bhajis nearby Dadar station. Soaking the moong dal overnight will give a good texture after grinding into a batter. Serve with Coriander and Mint Chutney, Raw Papaya Chutney, Tomato Ketchup etc.

Ingredients

2 cups moong dal soaked overnight

7 green chillies

1 inch chopped ginger

A pinch of asafoetida 

Coriander powder

Salt to taste

Oil for frying 

Water for grinding moong dal

Directions:

Wash and Soak moong dal 3-4 hours or overnight (I recommend it soaking overnight, it will give a good texture to Pakodas)

Drain all the water, the next day and grind it into a fine paste with green chilies, ginger, asafoetida, coriander powder and salt. Add water as needed. Make sure it’s not too watery.

Heat oil in a Wok, using a measuring spoon, drop the batter into the wok. Cook until crispy and golden. You will need to flip it a couple of times to cook them evenly.

Remove on a napkin to remove excess oil.

Serve the Pakodas with tamarind chutney, mint chutney, tomato ketchup etc. 

Malpua Rabdi

Malpua’s are small pancakes made with flour, deep fired in Ghee / clarified butter and soaked in sugar syrup. It is generally served with chopped dry fruits and rabdi.

Directions

Malpua batter: 2 cups flour, 1/2 tsp green cardamom powder, 1 1/2 tsp crushed fennel seeds, 2 cups milk (use more if needed to make batter), milk powder or khoya optional. Mix until you make a batter without lumps and deep fry in Ghee (clarified butter). Dip in Sugar syrup when hot. Leave for a minute , remove and keep aside.

Rabdi- Milk, sugar, saffron strands, green cardamom powder.. reduce until you get a desired consistency..

Sugar syrup – water, sugar

Stuffed Bhindi / Okra masala

Stuffed Bhindi/Okra is a popular Indian dish where Okra is stuffed with spicy and tangy masala filling. Bhindi should not be wet, hence after washing we dry it with a kitchen napkin.  In this dish bhindi is slit on one side and then stuffed with the masala and then can be fried and served as a side dish or can be made into an main dish which can be enjoyed with paratha, chapati or roti. 

Ingredients:

For the Masala

3-4 tbsp oil

2 tsp whole cumin

700 grams Bhindi / Ladyfingers

1 large onion cubes

½ inch ginger julienne

5-6 garlic pods sliced

1 tomato chopped

4-5 Kokum / Gracinia Indica

1tbsp coriander powder

Chopped fresh coriander 

For the stuffing

1 cup besan (dry roasted)

1 tsp turmeric powder

2 tsp red chilli powder

2 tsp coriander powder

1 tsp cumin powder 

1 tsp garam masala powder

 ¼ tsp Hing / asafoetida

 2-3 tsp amchur powder / Dry Mango Powder

Salt to taste

Directions:

Wash and wipe the bhindi / ladyfingers. Make sure it’s dry. Cut and make a slit in between. If the Bhendi is too big cut into halves.

Cut ginger into juliennes, slice the garlic, cut the onions in large cubes and chop the tomatoes.

In a bowl mix besan, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, garam masala, hing, amchur powder and salt. Stuff the Bhindi with the mixture and keep aside. Make sure there are no lumps of besan.

In a kadhai, add oil. When oil is hot add cumin, when cumin starts to crackle, add garlic and ginger, saute for a minute on high flame.

Add onion cubes and saute on high flame until they are soft, add kokum saute and add tomatoes, saute until tomatoes are cooked. Add coriander powder and saute. 

Add Bhindi and cook until bhindi are cooked, add salt, coriander and mix.  Serve with Paratha, Roti or Chapati.

Schezwan Sauce

Schezwan sauce is a fusion Indo Chinese version of a hot chilli sauce. It is made with dry red chillies, onion, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, vinegar and sugar. I prefer using sweet onion as it adds a sweet flavour to the sauce. Using Dark Japanese soy adds a light taste to the sauce. Schezwan sauce is a spicy sauce with sharp flavours of chillies and garlic. One of the favourites of all among Indo Chinese cuisine, it is a good accompaniment for chicken lollipop, momos, spring roll etc. Apart from Indo chinese dishes, it also pairs well with pakoras, tandoori, potato wedges etc. It is also used in the main course for Schezwan fried rice or noodles. So it can be called a versatile sauce. 

Try the recipe and let me know your views….

Ingredients:

25nos dry red chillies

1tbsp chopped ginger 

12 garlic cloves chopped 

1 sweet onion roughly chopped 

3 tbsp vinegar

2 tbsp soy sauce

3 tbsp oil

2 tbsp sugar

Directions:

In a pot add red chillies, chopped onion. Add water enough to cover the cillies.

Cover with a lid and let it cook on high flame until chillies are soft and well cooked.

Remove the lid, let it cook on medium flame until 90% of water is evaporated. 

Blend it into fine paste and remove in a bowl. 

Heat the same pot, add oil, garlic and ginger. 

Let it cook until it’s a bit brownish in colour.

Add the chilli paste and saute on medium flame for 2-3 minutes.

Add vinegar and let it simmer on high flame for a minute.

Add Soy Sauce and let it simmer on medium flame for a minute. (I have used dark japanese soy sauce which is dark in colour but less) 

Add Ketchup and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes on medium flame, so the sourness of ketchup fades away.

Add sugar and let it simmer until you get a desired consistency. Serve

Paneer Noorjahani

Paneer Noorjahani is a dish originated from Mughlai Cuisine. It is a preparation made of Paneer (Cottage Cheese), with creamy and mild flavour. The recipe shared is a mild version, so you can adjust the spice level according to your needs, but I recommend to keep it mild so you can enjoy the true flavours of Mughlai Cuisine.

Ingredients:

350 grams paneer

½ cup butter 

70 grams cashews

1 tsp kasoori methi (dry fenugreek leaves)

3 green cardamoms

1.5tbsp ginger garlic paste

1 tsp red chilli powder

¼ tsp turmeric powder

½ cup beaten curd/yogurt

A pinch of garam masala

3-4 strings saffron soaked in 1 tsp of warm milk/water

Directions

In a pan saute onions until they are soft and partially caramelized. You don’t want it to be fully caramelized or it will change the colour of the sauce/gravy. Remove and keep aside

In the same pan saute cashews until golden brown. Blend together onions and cashews until fine paste.

Heat butter in a pot, add green cardamoms and saute for a minute. 

Add onion cashew paste and saute for 2-3 minutes on high flame. Add ginger garlic paste and saute for 2-3 minutes until the raw smell disappears and the butter separates from the paste.

Add red chilli powder, turmeric powder, salt and saute for a minute. Add kasoori methi (dry Fenugreek leaves) and mix. 

Add beaten yogurt, let it simmer and then add saffron mixture, let it simmer for a minute. (Do not cook for more than a minute or saffron will give a bitter aftertaste to the sauce/gravy)

Sprinkle garam masala and adjust the seasonings before you add paneer (Make sure you dont keep mixing the sauce after adding paneer, or the paneer will crumble and will spoil the texture of the sauce)

Add Paneer and let it simmer for 3-4 minutes on low flame

Serve hot with Kulcha, Roti or Jeera Rice

Rava Ladoo (Marathi:पाकातले रव्याचे लाडू)(English:Semolina Sweet Balls) (Hindi: Sooji Ladoo)

Diwali also known all around the world as “Festival Of Lights”. It symbolizes “Victory of light over darkness, good over evil and knowledge over ignorance”. It usually lasts for 5 days and celebrated according to Hindu Calendar in the month of Kartika (mid October – mid November). The festival is associated with Goddess Lakshmi (Goddess of Prosperity), Lord Rama and Sita. It is celebrated as Lord Rama returned Ayodhya (Lord Rama’s Kingdom) after he defeated the Demon King Ravana.

During Diwali, people clean, renovate and decorate their house, workplace by lighting diyas (Oil Lamps) and drawing Rangoli. People wear new clothes, light firecrackers, distribute sweets. A variety of snacks are prepared like chakli (round shaped spiked snack), chivda (flattened rice snack), Rava Ladoo (Semolina Sweets Balls), karanji (sweet dumpling made with coconut) etc to name a few.

Rava Ladoo (in Marathi: रव्याचे लाडू) one of the sweets prepared for Diwali, are made with semolina. There are many ways to make rava ladoo, but the recipe I have shared here is made with sugar syrup ( Marathi: पाकातले रव्याचे लाडू)


Ingredients:

2 cups Fine Rava (Semolina)

3 tbsp Ghee / Clarified Butter

1 Cup Sugar

3/4 cup Water

1 tsp Cardamom powder

3-4 saffron strings (optional)

Direction:

Pound the cardamom seeds in mortar. Keep aside

In a kadhai (Pot) heat 3 tbsp ghee / clarified butter. When hot add semolina and roast on medium flame for 5-6 minutes. Make sure to stir occasionally so semolina doesn’t change colour. Remove and blend when cold (Blending will provide a good texture and will help in binding).

In another Kadhai (Pot) add 1 cup sugar and 3/4 cup water, when the mixture starts to simmer turn the heat on medium and let it simmer. Add cardamom powder and saffron strands. Simmer until you get a single thread consistency.

Add Semolina and mix well. Turn off the heat and let it cool for 1/2 -1 hour. Roll into balls.

(if the mixture is too hard, blend in mixer and add 1-2 tbsp milk as needed and roll into balls)

Nadan Mutta Roast

This Egg roast recipe is Kerala style which is locally known as Nadan Mutta Roast. The Nadan Mutta Roast is a dry dish and is a bit spicy, but you can adjust the spice level according to your needs. You can serve with any flatbreads, but traditionally it is served with Puttu, Appam or Noolappam etc.

Ingredients:

8 Eggs

4 Medium Onions

1 tbsp Ginger garlic Paste

4-5 Green Chilies

1 tsp Fennel seeds

1/2 tsp Pepper Powder

A Handfull Curry Leaves

1 tsp Red Chili Powder

1 tbsp Coriander Powder

1 tsp Garam Masala

3 tbsp Oil/ Coconut Oil

1 Large Tomato

Directions:

Prep:

Crush fennel seeds and keep aside. Hard boil eggs, remove shell and make slits. Slit the green chilies. Slice the onions and remove in a bowl.

Sauce:

In a wok heat oil, when Oil is hot add ginger garlic paste and saute for a minute on high flame.

Add crushed fennel powder and pepper powder. Saute for a minute.

Add in the sliced onions and cook until the onions are brown. the flavour of the dish is of roasted onions so make sure onions are roasted well.

Add in Slit green chilies and curry leaves and saute for a minute.

Add turmeric powder, red chili powder, coriander powder and garam masala and saute.

Add chopped tomatoes and cook until tomatoes are soft. Add water and let it simmer.

Now add the slit Eggs and let it simmer for couple of minutes, so the eggs get infused with all the flavours.

Adjust the seasonings and serve with rice, puttu or any flatbreads etc.