Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Crab Masala

Yield: 6 portions

Jumbo Lump Crab meat 1 lb.
(fresh or pasteurized)
Soybean oil 2 tablespoons
Fenugreek seeds ¼ teaspoon
Onions (finely minced) 2 medium size
Ginger (finely minced) ¼ teaspoon
Garlic (finely minced) ½ teaspoon
Curry Leaves (chopped finely) 10 nos.
Turmeric ½ teaspoon
Chili powder ¼ teaspoon
Salt ¼ teaspoon
Cilantro (chopped fine) 1 tablespoon
Tomatoes (small dices) 2 tablespoons
Lemon Juice ½ teaspoon

1. Clean crab for any shells without breaking the lumps.
2. Heat oil in a fry pan.
3. Temper with the fenugreek seeds and add the onions before the seeds turn dark brown.
4. Sauté till onions turn translucent, then add the garlic, ginger and curry leaf.
5. Continue to sauté over low heat for 5 minutes. Sprinkle little water if too dry.
6. Add the turmeric, chili powder and salt, cook on low heat for 5 minutes.
7. Add the crab meat and gently toss till spices and masala coats the pieces, taking care
not to break the pieces too much.
8. Add tomatoes, cilantro and lemon juice. Add 1 tablespoon water and toss gently to mix well and serve.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Dal Makhni "Mah Ki Dal"

Whole Black Urad Lentil 7 ozs.
Dark Red Kidney Beans 1 oz.
Split Chana Dal Lentil 2 ozs.
Ginger-Garlic Paste 1 Tablespoon
Salt 1 Teaspoon
Red Chilli Powder ½ Teaspoon

Oil 6 ozs.
Garlic (minced) 1 Tablespoon
Onion (chopped) 1 Large size
Tomatoes (pureed) 4 Large (substitute 20 ozs. of canned puree)

Garam Masala 1 Tablespoon
Heavy Cream ½ cup

Wash the lentils and beans in running water and soak overnight.
Bring to boil with ample water (1 gallon) and skim the top of foam that rises above.
Add salt, red chilli powder and ginger garlic paste. Cover and simmer for 4-5 hours on very slow heat till the beans and lentils become almost mushy. (You may use those small crock-pots).
While the dal is cooking, heat the oil in a separate pan,
Add minced garlic and fry till golden brown.
Add the chopped onions and fry to a crisp brown.
Add the tomatoes and cook for 1 hour till oil separates from the masala.
Add this to the boiled dal, correct seasoning and let simmer for 2 hours.
Finish with garam masala and heavy cream.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


KONKAN FISH CURRY: This dish is made with many variations all along the western coastline, from Maharashtra, Goa to southern Karnatak with different proportions of the ingredients. This is the one that I liked the most but I have reduced the chili pepper here to a third of what it is.
Serves : 4

Vegetable oil 2 tablespoons
Garlic (crushed) 6 cloves
Whole dry red pepper 1 no.
Onion (diced) 1 large
Curry leaves - Helichrysum angustifolium 20 (2 sprigs)
Tomatoes (chopped) 2 nos.
Jalapeno (chopped) 2 nos.
Turmeric powder 1 Teaspoon
Coriander seeds (pounded) 1 ounce
Cumin seeds (pounded) 0.5 ounce
Salt 1/4 teaspoon
Water 1/2 cup
Kokum - Garcinia indica (soaked in water) 6 petals
Coconut milk 8 oz.
Grouper fillet (1.5" cubes) 2 lbs.

Sauce: Heat oil in a pan and sauté the garlic for 2 minutes.
Add the red pepper, onions, and half the curry leaves and sauté till onion edges are a light brown.
Add tomatoes, turmeric, salt, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, jalapeno and mix well.
Add the water, bring to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes.
Cool the mixture and then grind to a fine paste.

Finishing: Bring the gravy to a boil with the coconut milk, curry leaves and kokum. Correct seasoning and consistency (you may have to add a little water) and gently ease the fish pieces into the gravy. Lower to simmer, cover and cook till done (approximately 10 minutes).


(Seasonal fresh vegetables in a mild, creamy sauce)
Serves : 6

Onions (chopped roughly) 1 no.
Peeled Garlic 5 Cloves
Ginger root (chopped) 1/2 piece
Jalapeno Pepper 1 no.
Oil 1 tablespoon
Salt a pinch
Cashew nuts (optional) 1 tablespoon

Put all above in a heavy bottom pan and cook on simmer for 1/2 hour. Cool, puree in a blender and set aside.

Oil 2 Tablespoons
Cumin seeds 1/2 teaspoon
Carrots (diced) 1/4 Cup
Potatoes (diced) 1/4 Cup
Cauliflower (cut into tiny florets) 1/4 Cup
Zucchini (diced) 1/4 Cup
Mushrooms (diced) 1/4 Cup
Bell Peppers (red & green dice) 1/4 Cup
Beans (diced) 1/4 Cup
Green peas 2 tablespoon
Turmeric powder 1/4 tablespoon
Canned tomato puree 1/4 Cup
Salt to taste
Sugar 1/2 tablespoon
Mace& green Cardamom powder 1/4 tablespoon
Cream 1/4 Cup

Heat Oil and temper with cumin, saute till it crackles.
Add carrots and potatoes, saute till translucent.
Add all the vegetables and the turmeric, saute for 3-4 minutes.
Add tomato puree, onion puree, salt and sugar—saute for 2 minutes and add 1/2 cup water.
Bring to boil and simmer till vegetables are tender.
Add the spice mix and the cream, check seasoning and serve


Serves: 4

Chicken (cut in 4 pieces-2 breast and 2 legs) 2 no.
Yogurt 1 cup
Lime Juice 1 tablespoon
Ground Red Chilies 1/4 teaspoon
Fresh Garlic Paste 1 tablespoon
Ginger Paste 1/2 tablespoon
Garam Masala (Indian allspice) 1 tablespoon
Salt 1 teaspoon
Oil 1 tablespoon

Make incisions in the flesh of the chicken pieces and rub lime juice and salt over them. Keep aside for half an hour.
Mix the rest of the ingredients in yogurt to a smooth paste
Arrange chicken pieces in a dish and pour over the yogurt mixture. Work the marinade well into the incisions.
Refrigerate at least for 4-6 hours.
Grill the chicken in tandoor or on medium hot grill (covered for better flavor) for 10 minutes and then turn over and cook for another 10-12 minutes till done.
Serve with Naan, lemon wedges and garnish with sprig of fresh cilantro.

PALAK MAKAI (Spinach with corn)

PALAK MAKAI: This vegetarian dish is our best seller amongst vegetarian options and appears on this blog on multiple requests by our regulars.
Serves : 6
Butter 2 oz
Soybean Oil 2 tablespoons
Cumin Seeds 1/2 teaspoon
Chopped Garlic 1/2 tablespoon
Frozen Chopped Spinach 1 lb
Red Chili Powder 1/4 teaspoon
Garam Masala 1/2 teaspoon
Dry Fenugreek leaves 1/2 teaspoon
Salt 1/4 teaspoon
Heavy Cream 2 tablespoons
Yellow cut Corn 1/2 lb

Heat butter in a heavy bottom pan till light brown.
Add oil and heat.
Add cumin seeds, stir lightly till they splutter.
Add garlic and sauté till golden.
Add drained Spinach, chili powder, garam masala, fenugreek and salt.
Sauté on high heat, stirring continuously for 8 - 10 minutes.
Add corn and cream- continue to cook for another 5 minutes.
Check seasoning and serve.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Lemon pickle

One of the Spice Nite attendees at Passage to India on Oct 7th had requested for the recipe of the Lemon Pickle that we make in the restaurant. It is one of my Mom's recipes and she used to make it without the oil but the salt quantity used to be twice. After two years the lemons would turn a dark brown and it was given to us as a digestive medication also. I still have almost a half pound of it that she brought for me in 1998 on her visit to US. It is a very dark and dry thing with the salt crystallized on top. Most of the Indian traditional recipes are all about a balance between the net effect of the food which is usually mentioned as either heat or cool causing. The Black Salt and Ajwain are a part of the digestive powder called CHURAN which is available in different forms, sometimes as a coating over dried fruits like Dates, Figs, Apples, Amla (Gooseberry) etc. Enough of that, on with the recipe:
Lemons (cut into 12 pieces and squeezed) 2 pounds
Oil (sesame or soybean- heat and allow to cool) 1 cup
Ajwain (Carom) seeds powdered 4 ounces
Cloves powdered 1 teaspoon
Peppercorns powdered 1 teaspoon
Black salt powder 2 teaspoons
Salt 1 teaspoon
Turmeric powder 1/2 teaspoon
Mix all the ingredients and put them in a glass bottle with a tight fitting lid.
Press down so that the top is covered with oil.
Cover tightly and leave in the sun for 4-5 days.
Open, mix well and press down so that the oil comes to the surface.
Leave in sun light for another two days.
The pickle will be ready in another 5-7 days.
Keep in the frige where it should last for a couple of years.
ALWAYS use a dry and clean spoon to take out any pickles.