Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Ginger Flavored Chicken Curry

Do you face cravings??? Like real craving like craving??? Like when you really had to have that....or else life will appear meaningless, and nothing...I mean literally nothing matters other than that....on that particular moment??? Do any of you face cravings like that???

how to cook Ginger Flavored Chicken Curry

how to cook Ginger Flavored Chicken Curry

Well...yesterday I had something like that. I craved for chocolates...not the sweet ones, but the bitter - sweet chocolate with a pungent aroma of cocoa....I craved for that yesterday. But I did not have any, as I had stopped stacking chocolates since I have undertaken  diet. So I called hubby and told him to buy an enormous bar of chocolate on his way home. But that is way too long to wait. I needed that, then and there, and at that very moment to satisfy my lust. So I walked a little in my room, with haste and confusion...should I wait or should I head towards the supermarket???  And voila!!!! Then I remembered nutella!!! My sweet chocolate and hazelnut spread!!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Restaurant Style Chicken Chaap

If you have ever been under diet you will see that irrespective of what kind of diet you are facing, there will be two common rules - 1.eat healthy and 2. take your diner around 8 to 8:30p.m. Mine has been no different. My husband prefers to eat late, but I always start to have diner sharp at 8:30. There is also another reason behind this specific time, that is, "Itna Karo Na Mujhe Pyar" airs on 8:30.

how to cook Restaurant Style Chicken Chaap

Now here is a little history behind this time. The actual time of this particular serial is 10:30 but since our Ds tv connection comes via South Africa, we see every program according to their timings which is 2 hours prior to Cote d'ivoire's time. My husband loves this serial and it was him who started watching it from the beginning. On some fateful days, when he comes late from office, he calls me asks whether the serial has already started or not. There are really very few hindi programs we like to watch on t.v and "Itna Karo Na Mujhe Pyar" is one of them. I like Ronit Roy's performance in this serial and I also feel the content is a little different from all the melodramatic Saas Bahu dramas.

Mughlai bengali chicken chaap recipe

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Cholar Dal / Bengali Chana Dal

Here in Abidjan, Lebanese population is quite large. As a result we have some wonderful Lebanese restaurants in Abidjan. I love their food. Its not too spicy but always loaded with flavors. I love their meatballs and kebbe. I love swavarma and their beautiful and frenzy smelling garlic paste. And I can almost eat everyday their Shish Tawook. Just prepare a wrap with a Lebanese bread, shish tawook, garlic paste, chili paste, lettuce, onion, tomato and some pickled cucumber and cabbage, and you are ready to have a blasting meal.

how to cook bengali cholar dal

how to cook bengali cholar dal

Our favorite Lebanese restaurant in Abidjan is L'automatic ~ The Automatic. They have two branches here, one in Cocody, Vallon and one in Zone 4 (zone quatre). The Zone 4 one is more furnished and better than the Vallon one. The Vallon L'automatic is more of a street side food station where we generally go for grabbing the food in our way, whereas the Zone 4 one is a perfect restaurant and its also just beside a lake, providing it a beautiful view and weather. They serve one of the best crisp Falafel in Abidjan. I just love their attire and the feel it gives.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Sobji Die Macher Jhol / Bengali thin Fish Curry with Vegetables

In my opinion there are various types of comfort food. I am strongly against the fact that one dish can be someone's comfort food i every situation. For me musrir dal and alu sedho (red lentils and mashed potato) is the comfort food for a normal day, I will fo with a messy khichri for the rainy days and biriyani for a self indulgent day. Does comfort food has to easy and quick????I don't think so....Then again....each season has their own comfort food. You can not enjoy ghee bhat on a hot summer day as you can enjot them on a sunny winter morning. Soups are always meant for winter and chilled drinks and sukto is meant for summer. Some times I wonder how our eating habits change with the time and season!!!

how to cook Sobji Die Macher Jhol

Today I am sharing such a comfort food which can change its alter with the availability of seasonal vegetables. This fish curry is very much affected by the vegetables you add into it. In winter add cauliflower and carrots and in summer add pointed gourd(potol), broad beans (sim)...anything that you can find in the market. Its very adaptable.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Matar Paneer

Matar Paneer..this is such an acclaimed and world famous dish, that it needs no introduction. For some, its the first choice of their vegetarian food. As far as I can remember from my childhood, in every occasion and in every celebration, I have seen matar paneer in the vegetarian menu. Although it is a Punjabi delicacy, its very hard to find any person in India, who does not enjoy matar paneer. Even when I made Paneer for the first time in Abidjan, the first dish I tried was Matar Paneer. Eat Matar Paneer with rice or chapati or paratha..its mouthwatering in every pairing.

how to cook Matar Paneer

how to cook Matar Paneer

This time when I made Matar Paneer I lightly sauted the paneer cubes in a little oil, but it is perfectly okay to not to do so. Its more attractive in that way, when white paneer cubes sneak out of that juicy red curry with lively green peas.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Mangsher Ghugni / Yellow Peas Curry with Minced Meat

Minced meat can do wonders. They can be fried, can be made into meatballs, kebabs and also you can add them to any ordinary dish to turn them into a showstopper.

how to cook Mangsher Ghugni

I have already shared the recipe of ghugni - the yellow peas curry. Today I am sharing a richer version of that dish, made with minced meat. It is very popular in Kolkata and you will find it any street side small restaurants. It also goes  well as an appetizer or entrée. You can also enjoy steaming hot Mangsher Ghugni on a lazy Sunday morning as breakfast with luchi / paratha.

bengali ghugni snack recipe mutton ghugni

bengali keema ghugni snack recipe

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Hariyali Paneer Tikka

Now a days I am liking the veg menus more. I tend to avoid meat or fishes, totally for no reason. I just don't feel like eating non-veg these days. Soya Chunks, soya keema, chickpeas, lentils and all other vegetables are more satisfying than eating meats or eggs. All those times, when I feel like this, I cook something pour moi separately. I made this hariyali paneer tikka on such a day and instantly fell in love with it. Its the perfect veg starter for any occasion.

how to cook Hariyali Paneer Tikka

how to cook Hariyali Paneer Tikka

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Kumro Chingri / Pumpkin With Prawns

My husband's ancestral home is in a village and my in-laws still live their. Ater marriage it was in that very village I lived for one month. To my ultimate horror and many nightmares, the experience was not that bad. The village is kind of modern in technology.

how to cook kumro chingri

You will not see any mud house or cottage there. Every family has electricity and all are kind of wealthy. The only down side that I have faced was the lack of internet connection there. I could not connect to internet in my room nor I could call anyone. I had to go to the rooftop to call my parents.

 The other short coming was that it was completely detouched from the outer world. Everyone had their own means of transport. Not many people relied on the public transport because it had no consistency. One day we were waiting to catch the 7'o clock bus, but it came after 9:30 a.m, and as a result we had to change all our programs. But that does not mean that life there is boring. It is calm, peaceful and has its own kind of entertainment.

 Kids there play in the field with their friends, rather than being grossly obsessed over video games. People still gather in the evening and have their evening adda. Life there is not rushing like Kolkata or any other mega city.

 I went to the gardens of mango trees and palm trees and also visited the tribal community there, who lives on the outskirts of the village. The day I went there, they were having some kind of puja and everyone brought a hen as their sacrifice to the God. I did not wait their till the end of the puja and returned back home to have lunch.

I used to be a complete hater of pumpkin. I can not even remember how many times I fought with my mother over this particular legume. But with time you learn to love and appreciate things that once posed to be an ultimate hate story. And with time, I fell in love with the sweet, savory and soft pumpkin. I love to eat this Kumro Chingri / Pumpkin with Prawns, which has the beautiful taste and texture of pumpkin infused with the forever tasty prawns. A match made in heaven for all Bengali foodies. Eat this Kumro Chingri / Pumpkin with Prawns with luchi/puri or paratha or rice, and kumro chingri will become your very own comfort food.

how to cook kumro chingri

Kumro Chingri / Pumpkin With Prawns
Serves 4

how to cook kumro chingri

  • 400gm pumpkin - cut into small cubes
  • 150gm medium size prawns - cleaned, de-shelled and de-veined 
  • 1 small onion - chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic - paste
  • 1 inch stick of ginger - paste
  • 1 tsp panch phoron / Bengali five spices (mixture of cumin seeds, mustard seeds, nigella seeds, fennel seeds and fenugreek seeds)
  • 2 dry red chili
  • 1 tsp + 1tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp red chili powder / green chili paste
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1 tbsp + 2 tbsp mustard oil / any flavored oil
  • Marinate the prawns with salt and 1 tsp turmeric powder for 15 minutes.
  • Heat the 1tbsp oil in a pan / kadai and fry the prawns in it until they are almost done. Take them out of the pan and keep aside.
  • In the same pan add the rest of the oil. When the oil is hot enough add the panch phoron / five spices and the dry red chili into it. As they start spluttering and sizzling add the chopped up onions.
  • Sauté until they become translucent.
  • Now add the ginger - garlic paste and cook until the raw flavor of the garlic is gone. This will take some 2 - 3 minutes.
  • Now add the cubed potatoes and cook a little bit. If you feel that the potatoes will burn add a little bit of water, and let them cook. Sprinkle some salt. Cover and cook for 8-10 minutes or until the potatoes are almost done.
  • Now add the cubed pumpkin pieces, sugar, turmeric powder, red chili powder / red chili paste and mix everything nicely.
  • Again cover and cook until the pumpkin and potatoes are cooked thoroughly. Check in between and if required add water to prevent them from burning. This may take 15 minutes on medium flame.
  • When the pumpkins and potatoes are soft from inside add the kept aside fried prawns and mix properly.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning.
  • Simmer with cover for 2 minutes and put off the flame. You can also add some garam masala powder at this stage.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Fulkopir Roast / A Dry Cauliflower Curry

Once a person told me that in his next life i.e. when he will re-incarnate, he wants to be a pet dog of a rich and  beautiful wife. Who will feed him beautiful and tasty meats, he will sleep on satin bedsheets and he will pass his leisure time snuggling in her lap graciously receiving all her attention. Some life..ha???

how to cook bengali Fulkopir Roast

I don't know about dogs much, but given the option I may want to be the pet cat of a rich and beautiful wife...because I envy my own cats' lives. In my opinion they are having the best of their lives. No tension, no worry...just eat, stroll and sleep. Is there anything can be better than????