The magic of Indian cooking is the proper use of spices. It is possible to create the most exotic dishes with the slight variations of these ingredients. Most of the spices and herbs used are -chilies, ginger and garlic, to name a few. There are few fresh spices ground into paste, with water or vinegar. Each of the special spice helps to create its unique flavor.
MUTTON KADA MASALA (Fathima of Lucknow, a friend)
· 1 kg. Mutton
· 2 coconut (Extract Milk 2 cup thick and 1 cup thin)
· 8-10 red chilies
· 2’’ piece of ginger
· 10-12 garlic flakes
· 2 large onions
· 4 tbs. ghee
· 10 pieces cloves
· 5 pieces cinnamon
· 8 green cardamoms
· Few Saffron strands
· Salt to taste
Put 2 tbsp. of ghee in a pan, add the meat with the crushed ginger and garlic. Cook till the meat is tender. Put remaining ghee in a pan and add 4 cloves, 4 pieces of cinnamon and 4 green cardamoms. Add cooked meat, combined with sliced onions, chilies and remaining garam masala. Let it cook with thin coconut milk for sometime. Finally add thick coconut milk and saffron and then cook for sometime till aroma is slowly rises.
STUFFED CRABS (Pavitra of Toronto, a friend)
· 6 large crabs
· 5-6 garlic flakes
· 1’’piece ginger
· 2 green chili
· 2 onions
· 1 lemon
· 1 tsp. garam masala powder
· 1 tsp. chili powder
· Coriander leaves 1 small bunch
· Bread crumbs to fry
· 1 egg
Boil the crab and scoop the meat and keep aside the empty shells for
stuffing. Finely chopped onions, heat a pan with little oil to sauté onions, add red chili powder, garam masala powder, garlic and ginger, finely chopped coriander leaves, then finally add lemon juice and salt to taste.
Barbeque this stuff brushing little olive oil or deep fry.
Mutton chilly fry (Shirley D’Souza, friend from London)
Cut into medium size and marinate in curds
For dry masala powder
· 1o red long chilies
· 2tbs. coriander seed
· 6 flakes of garlic
· 4 pepper corns
· 1tsp turmeric powder
· 1tsp cumin seed
· 2’’of cinnamon sticks
· 6 cloves
· 2green cardamom
Make a powder of these ingredients.
· 150gms ghee
· 2 onions (chopped into lengthwise)
· 2tbs vinegar
· Coriander leaves a small bunch
· 6-7 whole long green chilly
· In a thick bottom pan pour ghee when it is heated add onions
· Fry it slightly brown color remove half of the fried onions from the pan and keep aside.
· Squeeze the mutton from the marinated curd and fry it in a low flame until it changes its color
· Add half the quantity of masala powder adds vinegar an enough water to cook the mutton
· close the lid until it is nearly done
· Now add the remaining masala powder, whole green chili and fried onion.
· Simmer and fry it for sometime
Decorate with finely chopped coriander leaves.
NARGISI KABAB (Late Ruma of Mumbai, a friend)
· 3 hard boiled eggs.
· 1 big potato.
· ½ kg. minced meat.
· 2 green chilies.
· 1’’ piece of ginger.
· 1 tsp. each of garam masala powder, cumin seeds, coriander seeds.
· 3 flakes of garlic.
· 1 bunch each of coriander and mint leaves.
· Bread crumbs.
· 1 egg stiffly beaten.
· Salt and chili powder.
Boil minced meat adding little salt, until it is tender and grind.
Grind chilly, garlic and ginger together into a paste.
Boil potato, mash it and add salt in it.
Mince coriander and mint leaves.
Mix all these spices with boiled potato and meat & add salt to taste.
Cover the boiled egg with the meat mix.
Roll into bread crumbs dip in the egg and deep fry.
Decorate with fresh green lettuce and cherry tomatoes.
(You can prepare this only with boiled potato also)
LIVER (lamb) MASALA FRY (from my late Mother-in-Law)
· ½ kg. mutton liver.
· Green chilies 7-8.
· Coriander seeds 1 tbsp.
· Coriander and mint leaves, a bunch each.
· Pepper corns -5.
· Onion medium -1.
· 5 flakes of garlic.
· Ginger ½’’ piece.
· Cinnamon, cloves & dalchini, freshly ground to make 1 tsp.
· Ghee 150 gms.
· ½ tsp. turmeric powder.
Add salt to taste.
· green chilly
· coriander seeds
· ginger and garlic
· coriander and mint leaves
· cumin seeds
· little tamarind
Slice onion, cut and clean and wash lever and keep aside. In a pan, pour ghee and fry onions into light brown color add ground masala add salt & turmeric powder, fry for few minutes until it changes its color. Add fresh garam masala.
Finally add liver, cook in a very slow flame and let it cook till it is done.
GHEE RICE (from my late Grandmother)
· ½ kg. long grain basmati rice
· ½ kg. ghee
· ½ kg. onions
· 100 gms. kishmish
· 1 ½ cups of water (steaming hot)
Slice onions keep aside.
Wash and drain the rice.
In a thick bottomed vessel
pour ghee (nearly ¼ kg.).
When it is heated, add onions and fry the onions till it becomes transparent.
In the same vessel put rice and fry for some time.
Add water and salt to taste.
Sprinkle kishmish and pour the rest of ghee on the top.
Cover the lid & cook in a very slow flame for nearly for 7-8 minutes.
Remove from the fire and don’t open the lid for the next 5-6 minutes.
HOT AND SOUR PRAWN (from my Mom)
· Prawn 1/2k.g
· Red Kashmiri long chili 10
· Red short chili 5
· Coriander seed 1 heaped tbsp.
· Tamarind a lemon Garlic a big pod size
· Turmeric powder 1/2tsp
· Coconut oil 5 tbs.
· Salt to taste
· Shell out clean and wash the prawns and rub it in little salt and turmeric powder.
· chilly , coriander and tamarind
· 1 cup of water ( masala water keep separately)
· Take a earthen pot (traditionally cooking) put oil when it is heated add crushed garlic without removing the skin. Let the garlic turn into dark reddish brown(not burnt)
· Put prawns, add grounded paste in it fry for a minute
· Add a cup of water
· Close the lid cook for till it is done
· Semi dry goes well with dal and rice.
FRIED CHICKEN MASALA CURRY ( from my sister Sandhya Rao)
· 15 dry long chilies
· 5 short chilies
· 1dsp. cumin seed
· Few sticks of cinnamon
· 5 cloves
· 12 pepper corns
· Little tamarind
½ kg. Onion (round shape cutting)
Ghee and refined oil
Cut the chicken into medium size wash and keep aside.
· Grind masala into a very fine paste, add 1 cup of water and keep separately.
· Take a pan put chicken pieces with masala water, keep it for boiling with onions, add salt to taste with 1 spoon of vinegar .
· When chicken is nearly done, remove the chicken pieces from the frying pan.
· When the oil oozes out, pour the left over gravy and thicken it. Add salt and vinegar, if required.
· Remove the fried chicken in a dish and decorate it with hard boiled eggs cut lengthwise.
All cooking is matter of time,in general,the more time you
spend the better will be cooking.