GREEN PEAS KACHORI - BAKED



Kachoris are indian  deep fried dumplings. these are usually fried either with some stuffing or even plain. 

For a refreshing change, these kachoris are baked and hence more healthier than the original fried version. Got this recipe from Meera Sodhas recipe book! They are crisp and goes well with either this tamarind chutney or a yoghurt mint chutney. Since they are baked they were slightly hard. But becomes softer as they cooled. You can even eat this as a chat! Drench them with some yoghurt, and top off with some tamarind chutney and some green chutney  Dont forget the sev!!!!

 





INGREDIENTS:
for the pastry:
all purpose flour - 1 and 1/4 cups
salt - 1/4 tsp
oil - 3/4 tbsp
warm water to knead

for the filling:
oil - 1 to 2 tbsps
frozen or freshly boiled green peas - 2 cups
ginger - 2 cm piece
green chilli - 1
mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
cinnamon powder - 1/2 tsp
garam masala - 3/4 tsp
turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
chilli powder - 1/4 tsp
salt to taste

PROCESS:
  • To make the pastry - In a mixing bowl, mix together the flour and salt.
  • Add in the oil and mix with your fingers so that the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
  • Slowly add in enough water and knead to form a soft but firm dough. Take 1/2 tsp oil in your hands and spread it on the top of the dough ball to keep it moist. Keep it covered.
  • To make the filling- Using a mortar and pestle nicely mash the ginger and green chilli and keep aside.
  • Pulse/ blitz the green peas in a food processer or blender till they are coarsely mashed.

  • In a small wok, heat the oil. Once heated, add in the mustard seeds.
  • Once they start to pop add in the green chilli and ginger paste. saute for a minute.
  • Add in the green peas and continue to saute for a further 4-5 minutes.
  • Now add all the masalas and continue to cook for a further 2 minutes or until there is no more moisture left in the peas mixture. Remove from the flame.

  • Now to assemble them- Grease a baking tray with some oil. Preheat the oven at 180 degrees.
  • Lightly flour your work surface.
  • Pinch a bit of the dough and roll it into a 10 cm circle.
  • keep some green peas stuffing in the middle.


  • Close the kachori by bringing the edges of the dough together and pinch them shut. Gently flatten them if you wish.


  • Do the same for the remaining dough and arrange them on the baking tray, pinched side down.
  • Brush the tops of the kachori with some oil.
  • Bake the kachoris at 180 degrees for about 25 to 30 minutes or until the tops become slightly golden brown.
  • Serve hot with any chutney of you choice. it goes well with tamarind chutney. recipe for that can be found here.

RAVA PHIRNI - A THICK MILK PUDDING MADE FROM SEMOLINA




Phirni is a thick dessert made from sweetened milk and topped with some nuts. The most common phirni dessert is made from rice, although we can make it with rava/ semolina too! 


This dessert is one of the first desserts I probably learnt back in those days, I didn't know how to cook! Its so easy and requires such few ingredients. My grandmother used to cook this for Eid and I learnt it from her....... just that we improvise it over the years:) 

This is very similar to all the payasam and kheer recipes. the consistency for this phirni is as per taste. some like it thick and some like it thinner. so you can add milk accordingly. this recipe makes it on the thicker side.

you can skip the saffron but it give you a slight tinge of that beautiful yellow. the rose water too is optional but it gives it that little extra. 




INGREDIENTS:
milk - 600 ml
rava/ sooji - 1/2 cup (dry roasted. see notes)
milkmaid/ condensed milk - 1 and 1/2 cups
cardamom powder - 1/4 tsp
rose water - 1/4 tsp
pinch of saffron 
sliced mixed nuts (usually almonds and pistachios)/raisins - for garnishing


PROCESS:
  • In a saucepan, heat the the 500ml milk.
  • Once it has come to a boil, add in the rava and keep stirring so that there are no lumps. Keep the flame on low.
  • The rava cooks very fast. After the milk + rava has thickened, add in the condensed milk. Keep stirring.
  • Add in the cardamom powder and saffron. 
  • Once you have reached the desired consistency, (let it be slightly thinner because it will thicken more on cooling.) Add the rose water and switch off the flame.
  • Garnish with mixed nuts before serving.
  • Serve hot or cold.
NOTES:
  • Dry roast the rava for a few minutes before using without changing the colour. If the rava you buy says it has already been roasted, you can skip this step.
  • This phirni like most milk sweets becomes thick very fast. so you can always add more milk and heat it if it has become thick before serving.


BAKED GARLIC CROUTONS




Croutons make soups and salads more exciting! I'm sure you will agree with that. When you can't get hold of shop bought croutons, do not fret. All you need is your usual bread and you're good to go!

The recipe below is a simple non fussy recipe for quick garlic croutons.




INGREDIENTS:
bread - 5 slices ( I used wholemeal)
garlic, minced - 2 to 3 cloves
butter, melted - 2 tbsps
olive oil - 2 tbsps
mixed dried italian herbs/seasoning - 1 tsp
pinch of salt


PROCESS:
  • Cut the bread slices into 1 inch cubes. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the butter, olive oil , garlic,salt and the italian seasoning.
  • Pour it over the bread cubes. Toss well to coat.
  • Line a baking tray with parchment paper and lay the bread cubes on it in a single layer.
  • Bake in a pre heated over at 220 degrees for about 8  minutes or until browned and crisp.
  • Serve immediately along with your favourite soup or salad.
NOTES:
  • To re heat the croutons, place in a singe layer in a preheated oven for a few minutes to crisp up.

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