Moth ki Sabzi

The moth bean (pronounced “moat bean”), also called mat bean or Turkish gram, is a small, drought-resistant annual trailing herb with small yellow flowers and deeply lobed leaves, grown especially in dry parts of South Asia for its tiny (3-4 mm) edible beans, which range in color from light brown to dark reddish brown.

Moth curry is one of HD’s fav dishes. Just make it and see him smile. Whenever we go shopping, he always asks whether we have enough beans at home 😉 So I keep a cup full always handy and within reach. True, it takes some time to sprout them but you can store the sprouted beans for a week in the fridge so you are safe from that end.

Preparation Time – 15 mins

Servings – 4 people

Ingredients

200 gms sprouted moth

2 onions, chopped

2 tomates, chopped (optional)

1 tblsp garlic paste

1 tblsp ginger paste

2 tblsp oil

1 tblsp zeera

A pinch of hing

1 tblsp haldi

2 tblsp dhaniya powder

Salt and red chilli powder to taste

1 lemon

Wash the moth and keep aside. Chop the onions and tomatoes. Heat oil in a pressure cooker and add zeera and hing. When the zeera starts to splutter, add chopped onions and fry till light pink. Now add chopped tomatoes and ginger and garlic paste. Fry for 2-3 minutes. Add the beans, salt, red chilli powder, haldi, dhaniya powder and 1 cup of water. Put it on sim for 5-7 minutes after one whistle. Add the lemon juice and serve.

Tip: You can use dry mango powder (amchur) instead of lemon. You can vary the water quantity according to your choice.

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Ghajini – Another gem by Amir Khan

The latest movie of Amir Khan has delivered what was expected and more. 200px-ghajini_hindi1Ghajini is a movie about chase to avenge the murder of a loved one. The plot might seem simple but the superb direction by A R Murugadoss and great performances by Amir, Asin, Pradeep Rawat and even Jiah Khan have made the movie a pleasure to watch. Club that with the fact that Amir has a rare disease called anterograde amnesia that prevents him from remembering anything for more than 15 mins take the experience to a new level.

Amir plays the lead, Sanjay Singhania, who is MD of a huge company. He romances a small time model, Kalpana, played by Asin and then takes revenge for her death. Kalpana uses Sanjay’s name to further her career which brings about their meeting. Completely overpowered by Kalpana’s helping nature and personality, Sanjay can’t help but fall in love with her and proposes her. Unfortunately, it is her helping nature that leads to her end. While saving a bunch of girls being trafficked, she gets embroiled with a bunch of gangsters who murder her in front of Amir and leave him too to die. Amir survives, albeit, with a short term memory loss problem but still alive with the burning fire to avenge his love.

Asin plays the role of bubbly and chirpy Kalpana beautifully. She has the rare screen presence and knows how to present herself. Her character justifies the obsession for Sanjay’s revenge. Asin is not only photogenic, she is the next great find for Bollywood.

Amir is simply superb in his performance. His role is tightly packaged and penned down in detail. From Sanjay’s anguished screams over discovering Kalpana’s death every time he wakes up to his surprise over finding that he has killed the wrong guy because he cannot remember the face of the killer and even as the extremely sophisticated MD who tries to pass off as a commoner to charm his love, Amir has delivered the goods. He fits the bill and makes the story believable. His body is tattooed all over and he carries photographs of mundane stuff like the pic of his building, his watchman, his manager, his doctor etc to remind him where he is, what he is doing and where he is going. However, 15 mins seems like too short a time to make it completely believable. The medical angle is a little obscure but still gives a lot of leeway to Murugadoss to twist the plot.

Jiah Khan plays a medical student who helps out Amir in his quest. She has done justice to her role. However, a speech training would be very advisable for her.

asinamirThe movie is fast paced and keeps the audience gripped throughout. The flashback of Amir and Asin has been split into two and placed in both halves of the movie to give it the flow it needed. Rest assured there won’t be a dull moment as long as you don’t dissect Amir’s illness and try to use logic but follow whatever he does knowing it is a B-movie after all.

The best part of the movie is the ending where in Amir and Asin sit on a bench and simply gaze at each other while music plays in the background. Ghajini is an excellent watch according to Bollywood standards and it won’t be a surprise if it sweeps all the awards next year. Watch this movie if you want a good time pass and want to witness another Amir Khan masterpiece.

Rating 4/5

Lobia or Chawli ki Sabzi with Gravy

Lobia is a high protein cereal. The best part is it is a hard seed and so can be stored easily. Yesterday morning while replacing the cocoa powder in the cupboard, I noticed a cup full of lobia lying. It had been there for the past 4 months since MIL left. I had made it only once after and HD also likes it a lot so I decided to make it for dinner. I soaked the grains in 3 cups of water in the morning and left it out in a warm dry place in the kitchen. After coming home at night (around 12 hours later), I drained the water. The lobia had absorbed water and had become soft and grown in size. However, I boiled them in pressure cooker with 1 cup of water to make the preparation faster. Anyways, sometimes these grains do not become soft enough on soaking alone and need to be boiled once before being used in the final preparation.

Preparation time – 20 mins

Servings – 4

Ingredients

1 cup lobia, soaked and boiled

1 oniondsc000771

2 tomatoes

2 cloves

1 tblsp ginger garlic paste

1 green chilli

A ½ cm cinnamon stick

2 tblsp oil

1 tblsp zeera

A pinch of hing

3 tblsp salt

1 tblsp haldi

2 tblsp dhaniya powder

1 tblsp red chilli powder

1 tblsp garam masala powder

Grind onion, tomatoes, cloves, cinnamon and green chilli in a blender to make puree. Keep aside. Heat oil in a cooker. Add zeera and hing. When zeera starts to splutter, add the onion tomato puree along with ginger garlic paste. Cook till the oil separates from the puree. Add the boiled lobia. Add 2 ½ cups of water and all the spices except garam masala. Cook on high flame till one whistle and then simmer for 10-12 mins. Let the steam escape and then open the cooker. Add garam masala and serve.

Oatmeal Roti

I keep talking about utilizing food articles lying around unused in the kitchen and how to make something new out of everyday mundane dishes but I never before thought of how to make out simple staple roti or chappati interesting. Well, I have this huge box of toasted oats sitting in my kitchen and every night I resolve to make a healthy breakfast with it but never get around to doing it. Somehow, having oats for breakfast does not sound so appealing the mornings….he he he….So I decided to mix it up with whole wheat flour and it resulted in oatmeal roti.

Oats roti is high on fibre due to oats and so it is very healthy. Also, I have made roti and not paratha so there is minimal involvement of oil, basically to hold the dough together.

Preparation Time – 20 mins

Servings – 6

Ingredients

2 cups whole wheat flour (gehun ka atta)

1 cup oats

1 onion

1 green chilli

1 tblsp oil

2 tblsp salt

Chop onion and green chilli into very small pieces. Slice the chilli longitudinally to get desired result if required. Add flour, oats and oil. Knead dough out of it by adding little water at a time. Very little water is required so make sure it is added little by little.

Oats Roti Dough

Oats Roti Dough

Knead the roti into an even round

Knead the roti into an even round

Oats Roti ready to be served!

Oats Roti ready to be served!

Once the dough is ready, shape 6 round balls out of it. Roll each ball into a thin chapatti and cook it like a regular roti till brown spots appear. Apply ghee and serve if desired.

Seasoned Rice

This Friday HD and I decided to invite one of our relatives for dinner. The only problem was that Friday is working for both of us and the dinner would depend upon my availability to keep the table ready and HD’s availability in general…..he he he. He had got a new project last week so he was uncertain whether he would be able to make it to dinner. So I prepared dinner for 3 and was sitting pretty. Unfortunately, HD got delayed and could return home only in the wee hours of the night and the dinner had to be postponed to breakfast the next morning (but that is another story).

As I said, Friday is working for both of us and I had to rush home early to prepare a feast for three. A daunting task, given there was hardly anything available in the fridge…..I had run out of groceries….So I prepared a mixed veg sabzi, dahi ke aloo, paratha and seasoned rice to give the meal a more festive look. The seasoned rice came out really well. The best part is when you serve them. You remove the lid off the container and this awesome smell just wafts up at you. They look pretty simple but the taste is nothing but royal.

Seasoned Rice

Seasoned Rice

Preparation Time – 20 mins

Servings – 4

Ingredients

2 cups white rice

1 bay leaf

2 cloves

½ inch cinnamon stick

1 pineapple seed

2 tblsp ghee

Wash and soak rice for 30 mins. Heat ghee in a closed container. Add bay leaf, cloves and pineapple seed. Break the cinnamon stick into four pieces and add. Let the spices crackle. Now add rice along with 4-5 cups of water. Cover the container and boil. Let the rice simmer for 10-12 mins till it gets cooked completely. Drain the excess water on a sieve and transfer the rice back into the container. Make sure the lid is removed just before serving to ensure maximum effect.

The rice can be cooked in pressure cooker also. However, add 2 cups of water instead of 4 in this case so that all the water is absorbed by the rice. Keep on high flame till one whistle and then simmer for 10-12 mins. Let the steam escape completely before opening the pressure cooker.

Paneer Mash

Everyone has heard of potato mash. Make way. Here comes paneer mash, albeit a cooked one 😉 It is a great dish to add to any lunch/dinner. You can also pack it in your kid’s tiffin box with parathas/puris.

Ingredients

1 onion

1 tomato

200 gms paneer

1 tblsp salt

½ tblsp haldi

½ tblsp red chilli powder

1 tblsp oil

 

Paneer Mash

Paneer Mash

Chop the onions and tomatoes. Do not mix them. Keep aside. Heat oil in a pan. Add onions and sauté them. When they turn light pink, add tomatoes and cook for 4-5 mins. Mash paneer and add it to the pan along with salt, haldi and red chilli powder. Stir vigorously to mix the ingredients. Simmer for 5 mins.

This recipe can be used as stuffing for parathas. It can also be used as stuffing for grilled sandwiches.

Kadhai Veg

I will be honest here. I did not know a curry with this name existed….I never came across it in any restaurant before discovering it in Olive.

The tale goes like this. Sometimes it is not possible to cook dinner at home because both HD and I have hectic schedules so we end up ordering. Recently, we have been ordering a lot from a nearby restaurant called Olive. Though the menu is limited, the food is absolutely yummy. One day HD ordered a curry which was awesome…we were actually licking out fingers. And it was called Kadhai Veg. Now I searched all over the net for info on this one but there is nothing called kadhai veg. So I decided to replicate it with my own concoction of what a kadhai veg is supposed to taste like. Luckily, it was met with a big nod from HD 🙂

Ingredients

1 large onion

2 tomatoes

1 green chilli

1 inch piece of ginger

4-5 garlic cloves

2 cloves

1 ½ cm piece of cinnamon

1 cup cauliflower

1 cup carrots

½ cup beans

½ cup green peas

1 cup potato

1 cup paneer

2-3 tblsp oil

1 tblsp zeera

A pinch of hing

3 tblsp Salt

1 ½ tblsp Haldi

2 tblsp Dhaniya powder

1 tblsp Red chilli powder

2 tblsp Dry mango powder (amchur)

2 tblsp Gur (jaggery)

2 tsp garam masala

Scrumptious Kadhai Veg

Scrumptious Kadhai Veg

Dice the onion into large one square inch pieces. Keep aside. Cut the cauliflower, carrots, beans, paneer and potato into very small 1 cm pieces. Keep aside.

Grind the tomatoes, green chilli, ginger, garlic, cloves and cinnamon together to form puree. Heat oil in a pan and add zeera and hing. When zeera starts to splutter, add onions and fry till they turn light pink. Add the chopped vegetables and paneer. Add salt, haldi, dhaniya powder, red chilli powder and dry mango powder to it. Grate the gur on top of the curry and mix. Cook on high for 5 minutes. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes stirring at regular intervals. Add garam masala and serve hot.

The secret ingredients here are dry mango powder and jaggery which lend it their spicy sweet taste making the curry a winner.