In @Aathidhyam Easy To Make North Indian side dishes

Punjabi Kadhi Pakora or Kadi Pakoda

Learn how to make Punjabi kadhi pakora.

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This recipe has been in my to-do list  for quite some time now. Bitten by lazy bug always, I never tried my hands. I always felt it was too complicated. Mr.P never liked Kadhi Pakora. He always used to respond that it is Khatta. Read he is anti tamarind or anti khatta guy home. I find it very difficult to cook sambar without much of tamarind pulp or pulihora without too much tamarind. Thanks to his Bangalore days, he developed liking towards Kadhi Pakora. I now have a reason to make kadhi pakora instead of dishing up 2 different dishes. One lazy afternoon when I realized that I ran out of basic vegetables stock and I was still scratching my head that what our lunch is gonna be. I remembered Kadhi Pakora. I had Besan just about the right amount.

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I prepared this flavorful crunchy kadhi pakora. Let the pics do the talking.

Punjabi Kadhi Pakora/ Kadhi Pakora

Preparation Time: 20 mins | Cooking Time:30 mins
Recipe Category: Side Dish | Recipe Cuisine: North Indian - Punjabi

For Kadhi
Curd - 1 cup

Water -  1 cup
Salt - as per taste
Turmeric Powder- 1 tspRed Chilly Powder - 1 tsp
Besan - 1 n 1/2 tbsp

For Pakora

Onion - 1 big thinly sliced and separated.
Besan - 1/2 cup
Water - as required
Salt - to taste
Green Chilly - 1 chopped finely
Ginger - 1/2 tsp
Coriander Leaves - 2 tbsps chopped finely
Jeera - 1 tsp

For Tempering
Oil - 1 tbsps
Jeera - 1 tsp or more if you like (I use 2 tsps)
Garlic - 1 tsp
Ginger - 1 tsp
Dry Red Chilly - 2-3 broken

Oil - For deep frying

1) Mix all the ingredients required for pakora except water. Once done, add 1/2 cup of water and make a batter of medium consistency.
2) Meanwhile heat oil. Drop a small ball of pakora batter and see if it rises up immediately. If it rises up, hang on that's the right temperature.
3) Drop a spoonful of batter and make small pakoras.
4) Fry until golden brown and crisp. Do not keep the flame high. You may end up getting not cooked pakoras.

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5)  Meanwhile, whisk curd until smooth, add salt, chilly powder, turmeric powder and besan. Make a smooth paste. Now add water and combine all the ingredients.
6) Now bring this mixture to a boil. It will take about 8-10 mins and you will get nice aroma.
7) Taste a bit and check, you shouldn't be getting the raw taste of besan.
8) Once it is slightly runny, switch off the flame.
9) Once this mixture cools, it will thicken.
10) You can dunk pakoras right away or just before serving. I like mine crunchy though.
11) Heat oil in a small tadka pan and fry all the ingredients listed under to temper. Now add this to the prepared kadhi.

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1) I don't like sour kadhi so I use fresh curd. if you like a little sour, then use sour curd.
2) Switch off once nice aroma wafts when you boil the besan curd mixture. The more you boil, this mixture will thicken. Leave it at pouring consistency.

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In @Aathidhyam Lunch Menu One pot meals South Indian

Bisi Bela Bhaat or Bisi Bela Baath -

Learn how to make Bisi Bela Bhaat - Kannadiga style.

Bisi Bela Bhaat has always been my infrequent love. Yeah, you read it right. Like I forget about its existence for some time and then all of a sudden I'd read about this on some random blog/website and then I am all gaga over it. For next few weeks, this makes it to my every week's menu and then all of a sudden I forget about it and then the same story repeats.

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I have fond memories associated with Bisi Bela Bhaat, I was like 10 years or so, I remember this conversation between dad and mom. He came from his Bangalore trip and then he told my mom that he had something sambar rice type with vegetables and then it was served in a pot and all. He started describing its taste but couldn't remember the name. 

He called his B'lore friend and asked - Can you believe he actually described the entire dish to his colleague and then he told him that it was Bisi Bela Baath or Bhaat. My dad quickly scribbled its ingredients and gave it to my mom. When my mom prepared it, I liked it but then it was more like Dal - Chawal, so I didn't understand why my dad was so gaga over it. Because Dal makes it to our everyday menu and it tasted the same.

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Later on, mom noted this recipe from a popular Telugu cooking show and this has been a keeper ever since then. I remember last week when my mom told me that she prepared Bisi Bela Bhaat for lunch and that it turned out yum. Quickly noted this recipe and I am documenting it here so that I don't forget it ;)

Bisi Bela Bhaat/ Bisi Bela Baath

Preparation Time: 20 mins | Cooking Time:30 mins
Recipe Category: One Pot Meals | Recipe Cuisine: South Indian

Rice - 1/2 cup,
Pigeon Peas/Toor Dal or Tuvar Dal- 3/4th cup

Water - 4-5 cups
Salt - as per taste
Turmeric Powder- 1 tsp


Carrot - 1 med Size diced into cubes
Beans - 10-12 cut into 1-inch pieces
Potato - 1 med Size (Cut into squares)
Green Peas - 1/4th Cup (I used frozen)
Onion - 1 med Size (cut into squares)

For Grinding

MTR Bisi Bela Baath Powder - 2 tbsps
Tamarind - Goose berry sized
Jaggery -1 tbsp
Grated Coconut - 1-2 tbsps (refer notes)
Red Chilli Powder- 1 tsp (Optional)
Water - 3 tbsps

For Seasoning

Curry Leaves - 1 sprig
Mustard Seeds- 1 tsp
Jeera - 2 tsps (adjust)
Asafoetida- 1 generous pinch
Dry Red chillies - 2-3 broken
Ghee - 2-3 tbsps
Oil - 2 tbsps
Coriander -1 small bunch finely chopped

1) Wash and pressure cook rice, pigeon peas, for 4-5 whistles. Also, add salt and turmeric powder. Make sure you add enough water.
2) Once pressure releases, mash this rice + dal mixture.
3) To make life easy, you can even pressure cook vegetables in a separate bowl.
4) Grind the ingredients mentioned under for grinding list with water - 3 tbsps approx.
5) Heat a tbsp of oil and add the ground mixture. Fry until the raw smell subsides and add 1/2 cup of water. Make sure this is lump free.
6) Now add this mixture to rice and combine all the ingredients well. Add vegetables as well.

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7) Taste and adjust salt if required.
8) Heat ghee in a pan and add ingredients listed under seasoning. Fry for 20 secs. Make sure that you do not burn this.
9) Add this mixture to dal. Combine all the ingredients well.
10) This should be of pouring consistency.
11) Garnish with Coriander
12) Serve hot immediately with fryums, papad and pickle as sides.

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My notes:1) You have to serve this recipe hot. As it cools, it becomes hard and may not so tasty.
2) This rice should be of pouring consistency. So add water adequetly.
3) You can use vegetables of your choice.

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In Chinese Yin Yang

Chilly Butter Garlic Noodles

I love Noodles... Like I can have them as if there is no tomorrow. My mom often smirks at me and tells me that I should have been Chinese. I love to carry Noodles for lunch and eat the same thing for dinner and next day for breakfast as well and still not get bored of it. I'm happy to share my life with a North East guy(read North East which is almost close to China according to my terrible geography). He is more like me or should I say we click together because of our love towards Chinese/Indo-Chinese food. So I can give him Schezwan Noodles, Veg Noodles or Chilly Butter Noodles in a week and he will happily complete his dabba.

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When I went to Mainland China like a year back, Mr.P ordered Chilly Butter Garlic Noodles.  I loved it to the core - it was buttery, garlicky and very mildly spiced.I wanted to replicate the same at home and went by  what I could guess. My first 3 attempts were bad. After a couple of trial and error methods, I was able to come up with this dish and it is pretty much close if not there.

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This recipe is surely a keeper and a winner as well.

Chilly Butter Noodles
Noodles - 2 packets (200 gms each)
Oil- 1 tbsps
Water - as required for boiling

For Masala
Butter - 1/2 stick (You gotta be liberal if you are watching your waistline carefully then replace it with olive oil or regular oil)
Oil - 1 tbsp
Garlic - 2-3 tbsps finely chopped
Ginger - 1/2 tsp
Schezwan Paste - 2 tbsps
Salt- as per taste
Tomato Ketchup - 2 tbsps
Soy Sauce - 1 tsp
Green Chilli Sauce - 1 tsp
Sugar - a pinch
Oregano - 1 tsp (optional)
Spicy Garlic Powder - 1/2 tsp (Optional)
Pepper Powder- 1 tsp

Vegetables - 1 and 1/2 cups (Capsicum, Carrot and cabbage (cut into strips), beans cut into 1-inch pieces, cauliflower florets, green peas, baby corn)
Onion - 1 medium cut into squares

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1) Cook noodles as per packet instructions. Drain and add little oil and mix it. This prevents sticking.
2) In a pan, melt butter and add oil as well.
3) Fry ginger and garlic until the pungent smell subsides.
4) Add onions and fry for 30-40 secs. They need to be crisp not soft.
5) Add remaining vegetables and turn the flame to high. Fry for a min.
6) Now add Schezwan paste + sauces, salt, pepper powder, garlic powder, oregano.
7) Fry for 2-3 mins. Now add noodles. Combine all the ingredients well so that vegetables and masala coat the noodles.
8) Check salt and serve hot.

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1) I used Chings Veg Noodles. You can even use Egg Noodles.
2) If you don't like too much of garlic just reduce it to 1/2 tsp.
3) You can even minus the schezwan paste and add red chilly paste instead

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In Bread bites Dips or Bread Spreads

Eggless Instant Mayonnaise

I have been thinking of getting back to blogging like before with a decent number of posts to brag about every month. I really hope to stick...But you never know when work kicks in and I'm all under the weather.

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My shift advanced by a couple of hours and I'm finding it very very difficult to manage and I'm almost like a zombie when I get back to work the next day. I hardly get to cook or even clean my house. Oh.... I'm not ranting.
So mostly I rely on instant or healthy alternatives like brown bread or some salad or so. I usually find bread slightly bland and just can't butter toss it. So I wanted something that I can actually slather (read generous amounts) and keep nibbling all the way to work or in between those calls or meetings.

Oh Boy, I love mayonnaise but that "egg" factor puts me off and hardly find a stock of eggless Mayo at my place, so I end up not picking up at all.

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So I got these easy peasy and one week lasting Eggless Mayo. It's a no mess and no fuss recipe that you can do in flat 10 mins. Yes, that's right.

Let's hit the road.

Eggless Instant Mayonnaise Recipe

Preparation Time: 10 mins | Cooking Time: 5 mins
Recipe Category: Spread/dips | Recipe Cuisine: America

Milk – 1/2 cup + 1/2 cup
Corn flour (Corn Starch) – 3 tbsps
Olive oil or refined oil – 3-4 tbsps
White Vinegar - 1 tsp
Sugar – 1 tsp
Mustard seeds/ English Mustard Sauce – 1/2 tsp
Black pepper powder – 1/2 tsp or more
Salt – 1/2 tsp

1) In a bowl, mix half a cup of milk and cornflour without any lumps. Keep it aside
2) Bring the remaining 1/2 cup of milk to a boil. Now add milk + cornflour slurry to it.
3) Keep stirring this mixture and allow it to thicken. 
4) Once done, allow this mixture to cool.
5) Using a mortar and pestle or grinder, powder your mustard seeds into a coarse mixture.

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6) I'd ask you to use freshly ground peppercorns rather than pepper powder. 
7) Now run your corn flour and milk mixture through food processor or blender. Make it to a smooth paste.
8) Add remaining ingredients like vinegar, sugar. mustard seeds, pepper powder, olive oil and salt. 
9) Mix well and store in an airtight container.

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1) You can add red chilly flakes as well for a spicy kick.
2) I love pungent flavor of mustard so i used like 1/2 tsp and little over that. You can keep it to 1/4th tsp if you do not like too much of mustard flavor.
3) This stays good for a week in fridge. The moment you see cracks in this soft creamy mixture, you'll need to discard.

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