Vegetable Dum Biryani

Preparing dum biryani at home may sound quite overwhelming. It is definitely more time taking than your regular pulao and other kinds of rice, but it is totally worth the time you spend making it. If made with the right balance of ingredients and spices, your biryani will taste amazing, bursting with flavors.

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I had asked a friend of mine to bring Kabsa Spice Mix from Saudi Arabia. It is commonly used in Middle Eastern cuisine. The spice mix mainly consists of cardamom, black pepper, cumin, cloves and coriander powder. It can easily be made at home too. I didn’t have to add any other spices to my biryani. The spice mix was more than enough. It just made the whole process so much more easier for a lazy person like me. You can add various other vegetables, dried fruits, etc to your biryani. I chose to keep it simple as I was making it for the first time.

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Ingredients (Serves 4)

1 1/2 Cup Long Grain Basmati Rice (washed pre-soaked for 15-20 minutes)

200 gms cottage cheese cut in cubes

3 medium sized onions (one cut in julienne and two finely chopped)

3 medium sized tomatoes finely chopped

A handful of French/green beans

2 roughly diced carrots

5-6 cloves of garlic finely chopped

3 green chillies

2 tsp finely chopped ginger

1/4 tsp red chili powder

1 tsp turmeric powder

Kabsa Spice Mix (use whole spices if not available)

½ tsp red chili garlic paste

Few sprigs of finely chopped coriander

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 pinch asafetida

2-3 tbsp curd

Oil/Ghee

Salt to taste

Wheat flour dough for sealing the lid (dum)

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Method

  • Boil pre-soaked basmati rice. Add 2-3 whole peppercorns, 1-2 cloves and salt (optional) to it. Keep aside.
  • Heat oil in a non-stick pan and fry onions that we cut in julienne. Sprinkle salt in the oil to release moisture from the onions. Keep aside

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  • In the same oil fry cottage cheese cubes until golden brown (optional). In a separate bowl, add curd, cottage cheese cubes, chili garlic paste, salt. Keep aside

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  • In the same pan, add cumin seeds and asafetida to the leftover oil
  • Next, add garlic, ginger and green chilies. Saute for two minutes until it releases its flavor
  • Add chopped onions and saute until translucent
  • Add chopped tomatoes, turmeric powder, red chili powder, 1 tsp kabsa masala. Mix well and let it cook for 5-7 minutes.
  • Add carrots and green beans. Cover with a lid and simmer for 5 minutes.
  • In the end add cottage cheese and mix well. Add 1/4 cup water if required. Cover and cook until oil comes to the surface. It will take not more than 5 minutes. Add little coriander and mix well.

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  • Next, for the layering; spread one portion of paneer and vegetables, then boiled rice. Sprinkle few crispy fried onions and kabsa spice mix. At this point you can even add saffron and milk or dried fruits at this time.
  • Add another layer the same way. It is up to you as to how many times you would like to layer it. I did it twice. It also depends on the pot you’re using.
  • In the end, cover the pan with a lid and seal it with dough. Put is on a low flame for 15-20 minutes and serve hot. Alternatively, you can layer it in an oven proof pot and place it in the oven for 20 minutes at 180 degrees celsius. The dough becomes hard. That’s when you know your biryani is ready.

Biryani4Serve it with nice chilled raita or plain curd.

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Enjoy 🙂

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Broccoli Rice with Cottage Cheese in Chilli Garlic Cream Sauce

This dish is really simple and will just take you not more than 15 minutes to make it, as it requires very less preparation plus cooking time. It is definitely filling too. I won’t say the dish is healthy as the sauce does have good amount of butter and cream in it. So if you’re on a diet WATCH OUT, and as far as kids are concerned; they will definitely enjoy it. 😉

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Ingredients

100gm Cottage Cheese

200 ml cooking cream

1 cheese slice

1 small broccoli head

4-5 cloves of garlic

2 green chillies

2-tbsp garlic butter (I have used Amul Garlic Butter here)

2 cups boiled rice

2-3 sprigs of fresh coriander

Freshly ground black pepper

Salt to taste

Method

  • Brown cottage cheese slices in a non-stick pan on both sides. Sprinkle some salt and add a little butter to the pan. Toss and keep aside.

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  • In a separate wok add garlic butter and broccoli florets. Cut them into smaller pieces if you like. Add a little salt and ½ cup water and simmer for 2 minutes. Add boiled rice and toss well. Add chopped coriander.

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  • For the cream sauce, add butter to a non-stick pan. Next, add finely chopped garlic and chili. Let it release its flavor; then add freshly ground black pepper and cooking cream. Bring it t o a boil. Add cheese slice and salt to taste. Add cottage cheese and mix well.

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  • Serve hot.

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Enjoy! 🙂

Paneer Pepper Garlic Rice

This recipe is really healthy and has very subtle flavors. It can be had with any Indian gravy or on its own as well. Freshly ground black pepper gives this rice a really nice punch. If you like, you can add more spices and veggies to it. Adding curd to the rice gives it a very mild flavor.

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This is what you will need:
Ingredients
100 gm Cottage Cheese/Paneer
200 gm Curd
2 cups Boiled Rice
1 medium-sized red onion cut in julienne
½ cup green peas (I have used frozen here)
5-6 cloves of garlic
1 tsp finely chopped ginger
1 finely chopped green chili
Few sprigs of fresh coriander
1tsp garam masala powder
1 tsp red chili powder
2-3 tsp freshly ground black pepper powder
2 tsp refined oil
1 pinch asafetida
Salt to taste

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Method

  • Add cottage cheese to the curd mixture and keep aside.
  • Heat oil in a pan and add garlic, green chili and ginger. Saute until it releases its flavor.
  • Add onions and saute until transparent. Add a pinch of salt and black pepper.
  • Next, add green peas and cottage cheese we had kept aside. Make sure the heat in the pan is not too much. As soon as u add in the curd, give it a stir for a minute or two.
  • Let it simmer for 10 minutes on a medium flame. You will know it is done when oil comes on top.
  • Add coriander and give it a taste.

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  • In the end add boiled rice to it and mix well.

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Enjoy 🙂

Vegetarian Hot Dogs smothered in cheese and Baked Beans Sauce

The latest match between Brazil and Germany couldn’t get more interesting. With Germany entering the finals, fans around the world are all geared up to see a crushing victory again. Alongside all this built up excitement amongst enthusiastic fans, finger foods are a must while watching a match.

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What better way to enjoy a match, while eating something hearty and comforting  like a hot dog maybe?

Need I say more? I think I shall let the pictures talk for themselves. 😉 It is really easy to make and requires less amount of time to prepare. If you’re a true glutton like me this recipe is for you. 🙂

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This is what you will need:

Ingredients (Serves 4)

4 hot dog buns

200 gm scrambled cottage cheese

1 large mashed boiled potato

1 cup bread crumbs

1 green chili

2 finely chopped onions

A few sprigs of coriander

1 can of Baked Beans

Grated Cheese

1 tbsp butter

1 tsp oil

½ tsp Red chili powder

Salt to taste

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Method

For the Sauce

  • Heat butter and oil in a pan

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  • Add green chili, onions and sauté

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  • Add in your canned baked beans and cook for 5 minutes. Keep aside.

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For the patties

  • Combine potato, cottage cheese, bread crumbs, salt and red chili powder and mix well. Form into desired shapes and cook in a non-stick pan until golden brown and crisp. It didn’t come out as perfect as I thought it would, but it tasted just fine so no worries there. ( I should have added more bread crumbs. I have corrected the quantity here though)

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  • Make a slit in the bun. Spread baked beans, patties, cheese and anymore ingredient of your choice. Place it in a pre-heated oven at 200 degree centigrade for five minutes or until cheese melts.

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And there you go… Dig into it and all you’ll  be able to hear is NOM NOM…! 😉

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Happy Snacking! 🙂

Cheesy Grilled Sandwich with Caramelized Onions

When I think of a juicy grilled sandwich, all it reminds me of is Ross’ moist maker sandwich in F.R.I.E.N.D.S. 😉 I am sure, Friends lovers would know which episode I’m talking about. A perfect grilled sandwich should be easy to gulp down and each bite should be bursting with flavor.

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Over here, caramelized onions are the essence of this sandwich. They give a perfectly smoked and intense flavor. They blend in really well with the cheese and the veggies and the sandwich tastes just yum!

Ingredients

2 medium-sized onions cut in julienne

1 tbsp butter

Bread Slices

Cheese Slices

Filling of your choice (I used cottage cheese, onions and green chili)

Salt & Pepper for seasoning

Method

  • Caramelizing Onions- Add butter in a heated non-stick pan and add in your onions. Leave them on a medium-low flame for 15 minutes giving it a mix at regular intervals, making sure you don’t end up burning them. Sprinkle a little water if you feel they might burn. It will take more time for more onions. Some people also like to add a little sugar during the process.

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  • Meanwhile, prepare the filling of your choice. I sautéed onions, green chili and cottage cheese cubes in a non-stick pan with a trickle of olive oil and seasoned it with freshly ground black pepper and salt.
  • Assemble your sandwich by adding cheese slices, filling and caramelized onions. Leave it open if you wish to or make a closed one like I did here. Place it on your heated griddle pan.

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  • I had them with baked potato wedges and cucumber. Have this gooey grilled sandwich with a chilled shake. Just an icing on the cake! 😉

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Enjoy! 🙂