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Nimona/ Green Peas Curry

Winters for us are incomplete if we don’t make Nimona… Rustic flavours and hints of spice make this a family favourite! 👌😊 

Nimona recipe U.P. Style Nimona Green pea curry North Indian Nimona Polkapuffs Easy Indian food

The onset of winters brings really soft and sweet green peas….and this one of the best ways to enjoy the fresh produce. Nimona is best enjoyed with some short grained rice…lots of salad..a dash of lime and a healthy drizzle of melted ‘ghee‘ over it all! A soul warming meal…☺️

Nimona recipe U.P. Style Nimona Green pea curry North Indian Nimona Polkapuffs Easy Indian food

My Mom makes the best Nimona…hands down! It’s a family recipe which I am sharing today…it’s so delicious & healthy.

Let’s start with my Mom’s recipe..

Yield: serves 2

Equipment: a wok, a ladle, measuring cups/ spoons.

Ingredients:

1 cup coarsely ground fresh raw green peas

1/2 cup shelled fresh raw green peas

1/2 cup cauliflower florets

1/2 cup cubed potato

1/2 cup sliced onions

1-2 tbsp ginger-garlic paste

1/2 cup cubed tomato

5-6 tbsp mustard oil (use any oil of your choice)

a pinch of asafoetida (hing)

1/2 tsp cumin seeds (Jeera)

1-2 nos Bay leaf

1 nos. slit green chilly

1/2 tbsp cumin pwd

1/2 tbsp coriander pwd

1/2 tsp degi mirch

1 tsp red chilli pwd

1/2 tsp turmeric pwd

1/2 tsp Garam Masala 

salt to taste

lemon juice as needed

Method:

Heat oil in the wok, shallow fry the cubes of potatoes & cauliflower florets until golden brown, drain them from the oil and set aside.

Nimona recipe U.P. Style Nimona Green pea curry North Indian Nimona Polkapuffs Easy Indian food

Now, add bay leaf, Jeera & hing in the same oil. Once these crackle a bit, add the onions & ginger-garlic paste. Sauté until golden brown. Then add all the spices except salt & Garam masala. Cook until the oil is seperated from the spices. Now, add tomatoes and cook again until the oil seperates once again.

Nimona recipe U.P. Style Nimona Green pea curry North Indian Nimona Polkapuffs Easy Indian food

Then, add the ground green peas and sauté for 5-8 mins on low heat. Season with salt at this stage & add the garam masala. Give it a good mix…add the fried veggies now. Sauté for 4-5 mins to incorporate the flavours. Now add some water to correct he consistency of the gravy and cover to let it boil for about 5-8 mins on low heat. That’s it….turn off the heat…taste and adjust the seasonings. Add a dash of lemon juice! Enjoy 😬

Nimona recipe U.P. Style Nimona Green pea curry North Indian Nimona Polkapuffs Easy Indian food

Make the most of the Winters….😀

Love,

Shreya💖

Schezwan Paneer

Schezwan Paneer or Chilly Paneer happens to be one of my favourite starters when I am at a restaurant….😁 perfectly spiced sauce with juicy paneer makes it irresistible for many of us! 

How to make schezwan paneer Easy recipe for chilly paneer Polkapuffs

Veggies give it a lovely crunch in between bites of velvety sauce..👌..this is something so easy to make at home.. I am sure everyone has their own version. So do I! I keep making it often and never really follow a recipe! But one thing that I try to always use is my Homemade Schezwan Sauce for making this! The flavours are so awesome…just like the restaurant style Schezwan Paneer! 😉

Here’s the easy peasy recipe…

Yield: serves 2

Equipment: a pan, a spatula, measuring cups/ spoons.

Ingredients:

200 gms cubed paneer (cottage cheese, or you can use tofu too)

1/2 cup cubes of capsicum

1/2 cup cubes of onion

8-9 cloves of garlic sliced roughly

5 tbsp Schezwan Sauce

salt to taste

sugar to taste

4 tbsp oil

1 tbsp toasted white sesame seeds (optional)

Method:

Heat oil in the pan, once it’s hot, add the sliced garlic. Let it turn golden brown, then add the cubes veggies and season with salt & sugar. Cook until these they a slightly soft but not completely cooked. They must retain their colour as well.

How to make schezwan paneer Easy recipe for chilly paneer Polkapuffs Restaurant style chilly paneer Restaurant style schezwan paneer

Then add the cubed paneer and Schezwan sauce. Give them all a mix but be careful not to break the cubes of paneer. Cook for about 5 mins. Turn off the flame and serve it hot. This goes well with some Hakka Noodles or Fried Rice too👌☺️

Garnish with some sesame seeds if you want to.

(*Please note that I haven’t added any extra soy or chilly sauce as my Homemade Schezwan Sauce is spicy enough. You can add extra sauce if you’d like it to be more spicy)

How to make schezwan paneer Easy recipe for chilly paneer Polkapuffs Restaurant style chilly paneer Restaurant style schezwan paneer

There you go…your Restaurant Style Schezwan Paneer is ready…within minutes! 😀

Love,

Shreya💕

Sesame Soya Tikki

Everyone enjoys snacking on some crispy, crunchy finger food! Dipping it in some sauce just makes it all the more yummy…along with a delicious drink to wash it all down👌😁…although a cup of hot tea does the trick too! 

Sesame soya tikki recipe Polkapuffs recipes Indian starters Snacks Easy snacks Vegetarian starters Soya Aloo tikki

These Sesame Soya Tikkis make for a great starter/ snack as they are loaded with yummy & healthy ingredients…no frying…no oily mess! Serve these with my homemade Schezwan Sauce and some Iced Green Tea Limeade…perfecto!

Sesame soya tikki recipe Polkapuffs recipes Indian starters Snacks Easy snacks Vegetarian starters Soya Aloo tikki

They even make a great lunch box for kids…😊 Let’s get started..

Yield: 6-8 medium Tikkis

Equipment: a non stick pan, a mixing bowl, measuring cups/ spoons, a spatula.

Ingredients:

2 nos. large boiled & mashed potatoes

1/4 cup soya granules

1/4 cup grated carrot (you can add any veggies of your choice or skip them too)

1/2 tsp ginger paste

1 tbsp chopped mint leaves

1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves

1/2 tsp Chaat masala

1 tsp chopped green chillies (*omit it when you are cooking these for kids)

1 tsp roasted cumin pwd

1/2 tsp red chilli pwd*

salt to taste

2-3 tsp oil to shallow fry the tikki

1/2 cup slightly roasted white sesame seeds

Method:

Soak the dry soya granules in one cup of warm water for 15 mins & squeeze out all the water well. Place it aside.

Next, add all the above ingredients except oil and soya granules in a mixing bowl, mix them well. Then add the soya granules & combine everything well.

Sesame soya tikki recipe Polkapuffs recipes Indian starters Snacks Easy snacks Vegetarian starters Soya Aloo tikki

Next, shape the mixture in equal sized Tikkis, roll them in the sesame seeds and set them aside. Heat the non stick pan, once it’s hot enough, place the tikkis on the pan & add few drops of oil around them. Cook them on medium flame for 3-4 mins on both sides or until the seeds turn golden brown and crunchy. That’s it, serve them piping hot! 😀

Sesame soya tikki recipe Polkapuffs recipes Indian starters Snacks Easy snacks Vegetarian starters Soya Aloo tikki

Healthy snacks are ready!

Love,

Shreya💗

Adapted from Tarla Dalal.

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits

 Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Bakery style Biscuits are the best accompaniment to your tea or to share as edible gifts. Besides, these cookies are very famous in Hyderabad, originally baked in the city’s famous Karachi Bakery. Hence the name Karachi Biscuits. They are absolutely melt in the mouth good and so easy to put together. 

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits are one the most prettiest cookies I’ve ever baked, obviously after the Rose and Pistachio Shortbread cookies. Whenever I bake Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits, I think of Christmas 🙂 It’s probably because of the red and green beauties studded in the cookies. These colorful candies fruits make these buttery, crisp cookies even more delectable 🙂

One can choose any colors of candied fruits. I prefer red and green. However, even golden-yellow is just as pretty or add some orange colored ones. The colors do not make any difference to the flavors but they sure look so pretty!

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits are not difficult to make but many of my readers have asked me to share tips on how to bake these cookies to perfection, basically tips and tricks ensure that the cookies do not spread as they bake. In my last 3-4 years experience of baking cookies, I’ve perfected a few important, yet easy tricks that I follow to ensure that the cookies never spread as a rule!

  1. Butter – use a good quality unsalted butter. Do not whip the butter and sugar more than necessary and incorporate unnecessary air into it. We do not want the cookies to rise. Hence, just mix the butter and sugar just enough until they have incorporated with each other.
  2. Sugar – In my learnings, trial and errors, I’ve come to the conclusion that using icing sugar in most recipes that clearly call for powdered sugar works better than regular powdered sugar or superfine casting sugar. The reason is that the superfine sugar melts quickly and that cause the cookies to spread. Thus, I use icing sugar in most recipes.
  3. Baking sheet – Never butter the baking sheet. Line it with greaseproof parchment paper or even silicon sheet. This ensures that the minimum grease because grease causes the cookies to spread quickly.
  4. Chill – Anything that contains butter and stays at room temperature is going to melt and spread around when in contact of heat. It’s always advisable to chill the cookie dough (like bourbon biscuits) or the log (in case of slice and bake cookies) thoroughly before baking. The longer you can chill, the better! Even if they are cut out cookies like sugar cookies, please chill them for 3-4 hours after cutting them out and before baking them.
  5. Temperature – Preheat the oven at a good, high temperature because that high temperature ensures that the cookies sets in the first 5 minutes of the baking time and spreads less while baking. The reason is that, when the oven is set at a lower temperature to preheat and bake, this low temperature gives the butter in the cookies a longer time to melt and spread in the oven.
  6. Measuring the ingredients – This is very crucial. Ingredients must be measured correctly for the best results. One can’t blame a recipe if the ingredients aren’t measured correctly. I use a weighing scale when necessary or standard measuring cups when the recipe specifies ingredients in cups. Keep a set of measuring spoons handy for ingredients like baking powder, soda, etc. which can actually make or break any recipe!

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits

I believe these tips should tide you over as they have helped me too. It is inevitable that in the initials days of baking cookies, they may spread. That mustn’t scare you or put you off. Invest in good quality parchment paper, baking sheets and most importantly – ingredients. Buy quality ingredients as they will disappoint you far fewer times in your attempts to bake.

Let’s get you baking.

Measure and set aside the flour, custard powder and the cardamom powder.

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits
Take butter and sugar in a mixing bowl, cream them together just until they are mixed together.
Do not over beat them to incorporate ant air into these ingredients.

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits
Then add the Tutti Frutti and vanilla extract.
Mix it these well then add the flour.
Mix them well with a light hand and bring them together to make a ball.
Use 1-2 tbsp. of milk only if you are unable to make a round ball.
The dough doesn’t need to be kneaded, just bring it together. The mixture is very soft and pliable.
Now, take the dough on some cling wrap and roll it well to give it the shape of a thick log.

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits
Wrap the log well and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours. I refrigerated the log for about 48 hours.
In the meantime, preheat your oven @165’C for about 10 minutes.
Line your baking tray with some parchment paper.
Remove the chilled log of dough from the refrigerator and cut it in about 1/4th inch slices.
Place them slightly apart on the lined baking tray.

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits

Bake them for 12-15 minutes @165’C using the lower rods.
Remove the tray from the oven & let it cool on the baking tray itself for about 15 minutes, then cool the cookies on a cooling rack until they are completely cooled.
The cookies are soft when you remove them from the oven but they crisp up as they cool down. You can store these in airtight containers for 2-3 days.

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits

Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits

Prep Time: 3 hours, 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Yield: 15 medium cookies

Karachi Bakery Style fruit biscuits are egg free, crumbly, crisp and absolutely melt in the mouth! The best accompaniment to your tea or coffee that are generously dotted with candied fruits.

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup Maida/ APF
  • 2 tbsp. custard powder of any flavor (I used vanilla)
  • 1/4 + 2 tbsp. icing sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsalted softened butter
  • 1/8 tsp cardamom powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract/ essence
  • 1/2 cup of mixed Tutti Frutti
  • 1-2 tbsp. milk (optional, to be used only to make a smooth dough)

Instructions

  1. Measure and set aside the flour, custard powder and the cardamom powder.
  2. Take butter and sugar in a mixing bowl, cream them together just until they are mixed together.
  3. Do not over beat them to incorporate ant air into these ingredients.
  4. Then add the tutti Frutti and vanilla extract.
  5. Mix it these well then add the flour.
  6. Mix them well with a light hand and bring them together to make a ball.
  7. Use 1-2 tbsp. of milk only if you are unable to make a round ball.
  8. The dough doesn't need to be kneaded, just bring it together. The mixture is very soft and pliable.
  9. Now, take the dough on some cling wrap and roll it well to give it the shape of a thick log.
  10. Wrap the log well and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours. I refrigerated the log for about 48 hours.
  11. In the meantime, preheat your oven @165'C for about 10 minutes.
  12. Line your baking tray with some parchment paper.
  13. Remove the chilled log of dough from the refrigerator and cut it in about 1/4th inch slices.
  14. Place them slightly apart on the lined baking tray. Bake them for 12-15 minutes @165'C using the lower rods.
  15. Remove the tray from the oven & let it cool on the baking tray itself for about 15 minutes, then cool the cookies on a cooling rack until they are completely cooled.
  16. The cookies are soft when you remove them from the oven but they crisp up as they cool down. You can store these in airtight containers for 2-3 days.

Notes

Please note that baking time may vary as every oven is different, so time the oven accordingly. The cookies turn slightly golden around the edges as they are ready, so remove them from the oven as per the color.

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Love,

Shreya💓

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Tutti Frutti Cookies/ Karachi Biscuits

 

 

Tehri/ Tahri

If you are a North Indian, you will be very familiar with Tehri/ Tahri☺️..it’s a famous winter staple. We specially wait for all kinds of fresh winter produce to go ahead and make this! It’s my absolute favourite variety among all rice preparations👌👌😁

Tehri recipe Tehri recipe U.p. Style food Easy rice dishes Veg pulav recipe How to make vegetable Pulav Rice variety Indian recipe Polkapuffs

It’s such a rustic combination of freshest veggies…some fragrant spices and rice! I believe it can be anyone’s favourite one-pot meal….soul food for me though! I usually have it with some Raita & Bhune Tamatar Ki Chutney.…a really fabulous combo…

Tehri recipe Tehri recipe U.p. Style food Easy rice dishes Veg pulav recipe How to make vegetable Pulav Rice variety Indian recipe Polkapuffs

I always follow my Mom’s delicious recipe….I make no changes! Doesn’t need any…it’s just too good😘

Let’s get on with my Mom’s recipe…

Yield: 2-3

Equipment: a heavy bottom wok, measuring cups/ spoons, a ladle, a lid for the wok.

Ingredients:

1 cup basmati rice (washed & soaked for approx 20 mins)

2 cups cleaned, dried & roughly cubed mixed veggies (I use carrots, peas, potato, paneer, French beans, cauliflower, etc….anything you like)

1 cup sliced onions

1 nos. slit green chilli

1 tsp ginger paste

a handful of mixed whole spices – an inch piece of cinnamon stick, 2-3 black cardamom, 2-3 green cardamom, 1 bay leaf, 2-4 cloves, 4-5 black peppercorns.

1/2 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)

a pinch of asafoetida (hing)

1 tbsp each of coriander & cumin pwd

1/4 tsp turmeric pwd

1/2 tsp red chilli pwd

1/2 tsp Garam Masala

water as needed to cook the rice

salt to taste

3 tbsp refined oil + 1 tbsp pure ghee

chopped coriander leaves to garnish.

Method:

Heat oil & ghee in the wok. Then add all the whole spices, Jeera & hing. Let these splutter for a few mins. Then add the slit green chilli & sliced onions. Sauté until the onions turn golden brown. Then add the cubed veggies, salt & other spices mentioned above along with Garam masala & ginger paste. Mix well and cook for 7-8 mins on medium flame.

Tehri recipe Tehri recipe U.p. Style food Easy rice dishes Veg pulav recipe How to make vegetable Pulav Rice variety Indian recipe Polkapuffs

Then add the soaked rice. Keep sautéing for a couple of mins. Then add enough water so that it just covers the top of the rice and veggies but not too much. Mix well. Cover and cook for about 8-10 mins. Open the cover and give it a stir. The water will have been absorbed by now, turn off the flame, cover and let it rest for 5 mins before it serving piping hot! Garnish with some chopped coriander leaves and a dash of lime juice!

Tehri recipe Tehri recipe U.p. Style food Easy rice dishes Veg pulav recipe How to make vegetable Pulav Rice variety Indian recipe Polkapuffs

Give it a try…and you will love it!

Love,

Shreya💞

P.S. Non- Vegetarians can add chicken/meat in place of veggies and follow the same recipe…you will end up with a great one-pot meal!

Methi Aloo (Fenugreek Green with Potato)

Winters are here….though it’s not too chilly yet, but I can feel it in the air. Specially early mornings are so pleasant! The Sun looks kinda bleak these days…& it’s my favourite time of the year😊

It’s also when I love eating everything wintery! From a yummy platter of Litti Choka to spicy mouthfuls of Samose ki Chaat 😀👌…and along with these…I also like enjoying something as yummy and humble as the Methi Aloo…in my Mom’s style😋 which is so delicious and not at all bitter! Infact, it’s anything but bitter!!

How to make Aloo Methi Recipe for Methi aloo Polkapuffs Indian recipes

It’s too simple to make this..very few ingredients and it is ready in a matter of minutes😉…a typical North Indian style preparation. I packed this for my hubby’s lunch box today and saved some for my lunch! Enjoyed it with some salad & hot rotis👌

Let’s start with my Mom’s recipe….

Yield: serves 2

Equipment: a wok, a spatula, mess cups/ spoons.

Ingredients:

500 gms washed & finely chopped methi leaves (fenugreek greens)

3 nos. potatoes peeled & cubed

1 nos. chopped tomato

2 nos. whole dry red chilli

4-5 cloves of garlic

salt to taste

1/4 tsp turmeric pwd

1/2 tsp Garam masala 

3 tbsp mustard oil ( you can use refined oil too)

Method:

Heat oil in a wok, once the oil smokes (if using mustard oil, don’t smoke it if you are using refined oil), reduce the flame and add the potatoes and stir fry on low flame for 5 mins. They will turn golden brown. Then add the whole red chillies & crushed garlic. Sauté for 2 mins. The add the chopped methi leaves & season with salt and turmeric pwd. Mix well and let the cook for a few mins. You can cover with a lid if you wish. I don’t because methi cooks very fast and a cover isn’t required.

How to make Aloo Methi Recipe for Methi aloo Polkapuffs Indian recipes

Once the methi leaves are cooked well, add the tomatoes and again cook for 5-8 mins or until the tomatoes turns soft and mushy. Once that’s done, add garam masala and mix everything well. Just cook for another 2 mins. That’s it! It’s ready. (What actually works in reducing the bitterness is the tomato & the garlic)

Serve it piping hot! 😄

How to make Aloo Methi Recipe for Methi aloo Polkapuffs Indian recipes

Hope you like this…it’s just perfect for this season. You can have it with some rice & dal too!! 😬

Love,

Shreya💞

 

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