Friday, April 18, 2014

Pukhlein - Meghalaya Special

During this long month marathon, the most challenging regions to cook a dish from its North Eastern regions, am sure my co marathoners will accept this. Its really hard to get a recipe especially for Meghalaya region.Meghalaya is one among the seven states from the Northeastern part of India. As the name says, Meghalaya is the land of clouds and have heavy rainfull during the monsoons.Meghalaya cuisine have unique taste of it own. Meghalaya is the home of three tribes named Khasi, Garo and Jaintia. Obviously this cuisine is a tribal cuisine and its mainly non vegetarian dishes. As like its neighbour regions, rice is the staple food of Meghalaya peoples. The red rice grown locally is relished by the people for its delicious taste. The local people consume meats and pork is the popular meat among the people of the three tribes. The cooking style of Khasi and Jaintia ressembles very much and they use black sesame seeds to temper the pork dishes.Meghalaya is rich in production of fruits like orange,lemon,banana, guava,pineapples, so that the local people love eating fruits.Jadoh is the famous food from Khasi cuisine, this dish is prepared with pork and rice.

Rice cakes are very much popular among the native and they are known as putharo. Pumaloi is an another variety of dry and flaky cake made from rice flour. Among the snacks, deepfried and jaggery sweetened Pukhlein and steamed pusla are the favourite delicacies savored with tea. I chosed to make Pukhlein as they sounds almost like our athirasam but the method was seriously very quick than the famous athirasam. Trust me this dish is dangerously addictive, we couldnt stop munching these fantastic rice cakes.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Chahou Kheer - Manipuri Special

Manipur is situated in the North Eastern part of India and this state is named as the Land of Jewels coz of its rich tradition with many cultural aspects like dance, theater,sculpture, martial arts and the cuisine. The most distinct characteristic of this Manipuri cuisine is hot and rich in nature. This cuisine have many delicious dishes which are simple to cook and healthy to eat. The staple food of Manipur is rice,fish and leafy vegetables. Most of Manipuris have a kitchen garden where they grow vegetable and a pond where they grown up their fishes.Various aromatic herbs ,roots and certain vegetables are found only in this region are used to prepare their dishes that makes this cuisine so unique from other cuisines of India. Manipuris dishes are mostly hot and they use their locally grown chillies. Iromba is a popular Manipuri dish, this fish chutney consists of fermented fish called Ngari and chillies. Fish have their prominent place in Manipuri cuisine.Ngari is a favourite among the locals, they can give up the meal a day but they cant live without Ngari a day. Food is served traditionally on banana leaves and eaten by sitting on the floor.

Eromba one among the popular Manipuri dish is prepared with potatoes,vegetable and with excess of chillies with dry fish while Singju is a healthy salad prepared with a variety of vegetable and Ngari. Kangshboi or chamthong is a dish prepared with seasonal vegetable and ngari definitely.Morok Metpa is a hot dish prepared with a mixture of dry chillies and green chillies,onions and coriander leaves. While the traditional dishes are hot, this cuisine have a special place for desserts too. Their desserts includes Chahou kheer(rice kheer), Madhur Jaan (gramflour fritters in sweet milk), Kheer Angouba, Khamen Ashinba Athoomba (sweet tomatoes), Sangom kheer (rice pudding), Chakhao Matum (black rice fritters) and Heinou Thongba ( a sweet mango dish) served usually after a heavy meal. I picked Chahou Kheer from this cuisine which goes for simple ingredients like rice,milk, few dry fruits and sugar. Chahou Kheer is nothing the rice kheer which i simply loved as this recipe goes for quick preparation, i used pressure cooker and trust me the cooking time is just less half an hour. An easy breezy kheer you can enjoy both warm or chilled.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Foxtail Millet & Moongdal Dosa/Foxtail Millet Pesarattu - Shh Cooking Secretly Challenge#1

Recently i have asked few of my friends from FB to join with me for a cooking challenge, trust me this challenge is already a big hit even before am introducing about this event in this blogsphere. This event is something we are seriously enjoying since ever i combined a pair of foodie bloggers. I know you are nt getting what am talking about.I have recently created this event and the theme of this challenge is to exchange two secret ingredients between a pair of food bloggers mutually, they just need to cook with it either one or two dish depending upon the secret ingredients suggested by their pair. Apart from them, none from the group or even me doesnt know their secret ingredients and each blogger pair i have combined together will reveal their secret ingredient respectively only on the revealing date that is between 16-18th of each month. Sounds interesting and am sure many of us will be curious about this event. Do you want to join us, dont forget to get connect with through our FB group.

I named this event as Shhhh Cooking Secretly Challenge and we are having fun in guessing other's secret ingredients through the pictures each of us have been sharing in our FB group. Trust me its seriously very hard to find out and each of us have done an excellent job by creating delicious dishes from their secret ingredients which is still a mystery for us. Thanks to each and every members of this group for being sportive with loads of enthu.Logo was created by Divya of Divya's Culinary Journey, thanks Divya for this cute logo.I have been paired with Kalpana of Life with Spices and my secret ingredients are Foxtail millet and Spinach.Few days back i prepared this non fermentation dosa with foxtail millet and yellow moongdal.You can also name this dosa as Pesarattu, a delicious dish i cooked with both foxtail millet aka thinai which is spiced up with green chillies and ginger. Serve with a simple coconut chutney or an onion chutney, these dosas are seriously filling and satisfying you can have for both your breakfast or dinner.

Lonavala Chikki - Maharashtra Special

Maharashtra is a state in Western region of India, its the second populous state after Uttar Pradesh. Maharashtra is bordered by Arabian sea in west, Gujarat and the Union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli in Northwest, Madhya Pradesh in North, Chatthisgarh in east, Karnataka in south, Andhra Pradesh in Southeast and Goa in southwest. Mumbai is the capital city of this state and  the cuisine of this state differs according to its region.The cuisine and other cultural rituals of this state is divided into two main regions. The Konkan and Varad are the two regions, their cuisine have distinct flavor and texture and they can be immediately identified by any Marathi person. Konkani food have coastal flavor as Konkani people live near the seashore and the ingredients included in their cuisine are fish,coconut,cashewnuts, vegetable, peanuts as they are found in these areas. The Varadi dishes are spicier and they are very popular all over the country. The main diet of a Marathi included lentils, rice,wheat,vegetable and fruit. Rice or bhaat is a common food and its served with bhaji,along with dal, then bhakri, the roti made with wheat,bajra or jowar together or individually.Bhaji is a vegetarian dish prepared prominently with vegetables,spices and rassa is made of potato and cauliflower. Goda masala and kalaa masala are the spicy powders that add distinct flavor to Marathi cuisine.

Maharashtrian special dishes goes mostly for chivda or Bombay mixture, Kande Poha, Usal Pav, Vada Pav. This cuisine also have many popular sweet delicacies and many of them are famous all over India.The list goes for Puran poli, Karanji, Modak,Kheer, Basundi,Jalebi, Shrikhand,Shankarpali. Instead of chosing from this list of dishes, i opted for the famous Lonavala Chikki. Lonavala is named from the word 'Lenya' which means caves in Marathi since its have many rock cut caves. Its Shri Maganlal Agarwal brought chikki to Lonavala more than 125years ago. Actually Shri Maganlal began selling Gurdana, a mixture of jaggery and groundnuts in a huge sack to the laborers, since gurdana is rich in protein and iron, the laborers used to consume it for the instant energey, later this simple gurdana turned to groundnut chikki. Chikki is made from simple ingredients like jaggery,sugar, nuts.You can prepare this chikkis with different nuts, sesame seeds or with a nut. However i used cashewnuts and almonds in this chikki and used the usual white sugar which is caramalised later for giving this beautiful brownish colour to this super addictive chikki.