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Sep 142013
 
Tamatar Chaaman

Tamatar Chaaman

 

According to wiki, Fusion cuisine is cuisine that combines elements of different culinary traditions.  And that is exactly what my mom did when she made the Tamatar Chaaman – paneer with tomatoes,  though she did not label it as fusion.  She took elements from the Kashmiri Muslim cuisine and elements of the Kashmiri Pandit cuisine and made an extraordinary dish called the tamatar chaman – Paneer with Tomatoes.

Use of onions, shallots and garlic is prevalent in the Kashmiri Muslim cuisine, be it the home cooking or the much fabled “Wazwaan”. On the other hand Kashmiri Pandit cuisine is sans onions and garlic especially in the “saal”, which is the equivalent of Wazwaan. The use of onions, in Pandit homes was allowed to an extent, in certain homely dishes but the use of garlic and shallots was unheard of.

Paneer

Having lived and worked most of her life in the beautiful Kaprin, the population of which is  99.9% Muslim, she was introduced to their wonderful cuisine. And with that introduction, her fusion dishes started to make way into our daily food. For most part, she would eliminate the onions and garlic and base the dish on a traditional Kashmiri Pandit technique and use some elements of the Muslim cuisine. The resulting dishes were sublime.

The tamatar chaaman is a fusion between the wazwaan style Ruwaangan chaaman and the saal style Wozij chaaman. The main elements in the Ruwaangan chaaman are tomatoes, fried onions, garlic and red chillies with silky soft paneer, whereas the wozij chaaman is silky soft paneer cooked in fennel seed powder, red chillies and a dash of yogurt.

Homemade paneer

Taking the onions and garlic away, and introducing the tomatoes to the paneer and fennel preparation makes this dish a great fusion. It also makes it a quick and easy weeknight dinner.

Enjoy and Stay Blessed

Ansh

Tamatar Chaaman – Paneer with Tomatoes a Kashmiri fusion Recipe

Serves: 10 servings as one of the dishes in an Indian meal.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound paneer
  • 1 pound tomatoes - Local organic / heirloom preferred - chopped
  • salt to taste
  • 2 tsp kashmiri chilli powder
  • 1/4 tsp hing
  • 1/2 tsp shahi zeera (black cumin)
  • 1/2 tsp sonth (ginger) powder
  • 2tbs saunf ( fennel powder)
  • 1/2 tsp kashmiri garam masala ( Or use Shaan Zafrani garam masala)
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • Mustard oil for best taste. You can also use canola/ peanut.

Instructions

  1. Put about 2 cups of hot water in a bowl. Add in the turmeric into to. Keep aside.
  2. Slice the paneer into thick rectangular slices.
  3. Heat some mustard oil (or any other oil you are using) for some shallow frying and fry the paneer one or two slice at a time. You basically just want to get a golden hue in places.
  4. Remove with a slotted spoon and dunk it in the waiting water turmeric mix.
  5. Continue to fry and dunk until all paneer gets the treatment.
  6. Take 2-3 tbs of the oil in which you fried the paneer in a different pan and add in the tomatoes to it.
  7. Add in the hing, cover and cook for about 10 minutes on medium heat.
  8. Stir and add salt. Cover and cook again for another 5 minutes or until the tomatoes are almost cooked to a paste.
  9. Add in the spices,except garam masala and zeera. Mix and cook until oil floats to top.
  10. Add in the paneer and along with the water it was basking in.
  11. Cook until oil floats to top again and you reach the desired consistency in gravy.
  12. Ideally this is slightly thick.
  13. Finish off with the garam masala and zeera . Cover and let it rest for 30 minutes before serving.

Notes

Best Made with freshly made paneer.

http://www.spiceroots.com/tamatar-chaaman-paneer-tomatoes-kashmiri-fusion-recipe

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Feb 282013
 
IMG_4384

Couscous salad with sauteed greens and pumpkin seeds

What an incredibly useful plant the pumpkin is. It gives us the flowers to make fritters with, the tender leaves can be briefly cooked and used in salads or back home, my grandma makes the tastiest “al kanij ta waangun” ( pumpkin leaves and baby eggplants). Then, when Halloween is around the corner, we bring the pumpkins home and make them into Jack o lanterns, or make pies and soups. And when carving those pumpkins we save up the seeds to either roast or dry up and store to use later.

Pumpkin was not my favorite vegetable to eat, unless my mom cooked it in a spicy sauce, which she often did. However, I loved the dish made with its greens and also loved the fritters made from its flowers. Having said that, the most favorite part of the pumpkins for me was the seeds. And it still is.

There is a bond that establishes when you roast a batch of pumpkin seeds and sit together to eat them. You pick the nutty, salty seeds one by one and either chew it with its shell on or painstakingly peel it to reach to the meaty nut inside. Which ever way you eat your pumpkin seeds, it makes for lasting memories.

My sisters and I would carry roasted pumpkin seeds in the pockets of our Pheran along with some walnuts and almonds for snacks – to be munched on while we played for hours in snow or while we watched the local cricket team play a game. The cricket watching was mostly eye candy [9 fielders, 1 wicket keeper, 1 bowler, 2 batsmen = a Lot of guy eye candy].

Now now, Don’t get distracted.. we are not talking about those guys. Today we are talking about the pumpkin seeds and why they are so good for us. Yes they are high in calories, BUT I don’t bother about that when I know that :-

Pumpkin seeds have phytosterols, these are compounds that that have been shown to reduce levels of LDL cholesterol. They also contain L-tryptophan, which helps with good sleep. They are a great source of zinc, making them a natural protector against osteoporosis. They are alkaline-forming seed and contain good quality protein.

Some studies have shown that pumpkin seeds prevent kidney stone formation, reduce inflammation for arthritis without the side effects of anti-inflammatory drugs.

Need more? How about they just taste so so so so good ? And so is this recipe of Couscous Salad with Sauteed Greens & Pumpkin Seeds. It is Power food, to say the least.

 

Do check the recipes from Jeanette at jeanetteshealthyliving ; Martha at Simply Nourished Living ; Mireya at Myhealthyeatinghabits ; Alyce at More time at the table ;  Minnie at thelady8home.com , Casey at  Sweetsav .

 

Couscous Salad with Sauteed Greens & Pumpkin Seeds

Couscous Salad with Sauteed Greens & Pumpkin Seeds

Ingredients

  • 1/2 C cooked whole wheat Couscous
  • 1/4 C chopped kale
  • 1/4 C bean sprouts
  • 1/4 C purple cabbage
  • 1/4 C braising Vegetables (or a mix of any green leafy vegetables)
  • 2- 3 Tbs chopped carrots
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 1 Tbs pumpkin seeds
  • Romaine lettuce leaves to serve (optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil and add in carrots to sautee for a bit.
  2. Add in the cabbage and sautee some more
  3. Add in the braising vegetables, and the kale and cook until they turn a deep shade of green. Add in the bean sprouts, salt, pepper and balsamic vinegar.
  4. Mix to combine and now add in the couscous.
  5. Mix well, turn off heat.
  6. Add in the pumpkin seeds and serve in romaine lettuce cups.

Notes

I used carrots to balance out the tartness from vinegar, those can be substituted by peas. The taste of this salad depends largely on the quality of the produce, so use the best you can ( organic highly recommended) as there isn't much to help it out if the basic greens are not tasty.

http://www.spiceroots.com/couscous-salad-with-sauteed-greens-pumpkin-seeds

 

 

 

 

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Oct 192012
 
Kiwi chaat

It has been a very busy month.  The tween turned into a teen  tornado.  And we have been busy redoing the room from a baby pink and lavender to a royal turquoise and lilac. The furniture is more teenager like and so are the room accessories.  She is excited and so am I.  I had thought it would be a daunting experience because I wouldn’t be ready.  But it has turned to be a great joy.  A whole new person is emerging right in front of my eyes and I suddenly have a new friend, interesting and refreshing take on the world,  and just an adorably good girl. ( well mostly)

My life has a fresh new perspective because of this young new person. I am eternally thankful and grateful to have her in my life.  We have the regular broody teen moments, but I think we will survive!

For today’s Power foods  blog group we had the Kiwi.  It is one of my daughter’s favorite fruits.  She loves things that are a little tangy.  I came up with the idea of healthy, filling Kiwi Mulberry Pomegranate Mixed Fruit Chaat for her and me to spend a Friday morning eating and just going over the plans for the first sleepover party in her new room! She is Excited.. Me ? well you know how it is!

Kiwis have an abundance of vitamins and minerals and provide a wide array of nutrition benefits. It is naturally fat free as well. They help in increased iron absorption, have been known to boost the immune system and have phytonutrients that help the body protect against some cancers. It a great thing to eat if you are pregnant as it provides 10% of the required daily folic acid.

38 Power Foods blog group  focuses on one ingredient each week taking inspiration from the book ; Power Foods: 150 Delicious Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients from the editors of the whole living magazine. Each week we all  come up with recipes, stories, articles to encourage eating nourishing food.

Jeanette at jeanetteshealthyliving ; Martha at Simply Nourished Living ; Mireya at Myhealthyeatinghabits ; Alyce at More time at the table ; Casey at My Sweet and Savory;   Minnie at TheLady8Home

These amazing women have been powering through the power foods week after week and I always look forward to their posts. I learn a lot from them and have learned a lot about my food on this journey.

Kiwi Mulberry Pomegranate Mixed Fruit Chaat

Ingredients

  • 2 peeled kiwi fruits
  • 1 apple
  • 1/4 C pomegranate seeds
  • 1/4 C dried mulberry (add raisins or any other berries)
  • 1/2 tsp chaat masala
  • 1tbs shelled pistachios
  • Himalayan pink salt (you can use any salt)
  • 1/4 tsp Cayenne powder

Instructions

  1. Chop / slice the kiwis and the apple. Toss everything together.
  2. Mix, check the seasoning and devour.
  3. You can also add some cilantro for another layer of flavor.
http://www.spiceroots.com/kiwi-mulberry-pomegranate-mixed-fruit-chaat

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Oct 122012
 
Pan grilled fish

Refreshing orange. Buttery fish. Aromatic Rosemary. Seductive Garlic.  Crunchy Zucchini. A touch of salt & one Simple Clean Tasting Dish.   Most of the times the best tasting foods are really that simple.  These are the kind of dishes that keep me hooked to cooking. Simple ingredients are never boring.

For this weeks power foods blog group we have the Citrus! Yes – The things you need to peel and eat or juice up. Refreshing, full of Vitamin C – Citrus.  It is said that one orange fulfills your daily requirement of Vitamin C. Need more reasons?  They provide you with a a great amount of folate and potassium.  And when you are done eating the fruit,  make a nice marmalade out of the organic peels.

38 Power Foods blog group  focuses on one ingredient each week taking inspiration from the book ; Power Foods: 150 Delicious Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients from the editors of the whole living magazine. Each week we all  come up with recipes, stories, articles to encourage eating nourishing food.

Jeanette at jeanetteshealthyliving ; Martha at Simply Nourished Living ; Mireya at Myhealthyeatinghabits ; Alyce at More time at the table ; Casey at My Sweet and Savory;   Minnie at TheLady8Home

These amazing women have been powering through the power foods week after week and I always look forward to their posts. I learn a lot from them and have learned a lot about my food on this journey.

Pan Grilled Snapper with Orange Sauce

Ingredients

  • 4 fillets of snapper
  • 1 C orange juice
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp fresh rosemary chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic chopped
  • 1/2 tsp blackpepper
  • 1/2 tsp honey
  • oil to spray
  • 1/2 tsp olive oil/butter

Instructions

  1. Heat up a flat griddle and spray some oil on it
  2. Sprinkle salt and pepper on the fish and tap with your fingers.
  3. Place the fish fillets skin side down and cook until the skin crisps up
  4. Carefully turn the fillet to cook on the other side.
  5. While the fish is cooking, heat up a medium size pan.
  6. Add butter/oil and cook the garlic. Now add the orange juice and let it simmer until it reduces in volume. About 3 minutes
  7. Add the honey and the rosemary.
  8. When the fish is cooked, place in a plate and drizzle the sauce over the top
  9. For this dish I cooked the zucchinis on the same griddle as the fish with just a touch of salt and a spray of oil.
http://www.spiceroots.com/pan-grilled-snapper-with-orange-sauce

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 Posted by on October 12, 2012 at 4:46 PM  Tagged with:
Sep 212012
 
Acorn squash with Salmon mousse

As we are nearing the end of summer, one can’t help but marvel at the harvest that is in the Farmer’s markets.  Fall is nature’s way of saying, you toiled hard, enjoy a while and think of the long winter days with courage and strength.  I think it is nature’s way of providing us hope that we will overcome.

For this week’s 38 Power foods blog group, we have the winter squash.  A powerhouse of nutrients like the Vit B6, Vit C, potassium, Folate to name a few.  I made the baked acorn squash with goat cheese  salmon mousse. And I made the Salmon mousse with my favorite Dill and Garlic Chevre.  It is one of my favorite cheeses from the Haystack Moutain Goat Dairy.

38 Power Foods blog group  focuses on one ingredient each week taking inspiration from the book ; Power Foods: 150 Delicious Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients from the editors of the whole living magazine. Each week we all  come up with recipes, stories, articles to encourage eating nourishing food.

Who is we all ? The following wonderful people who make nourishing food and talk about it on their blogs. Do check what they have come up with this week. Also, If you are a blogger and  love the idea of being part of the 38 power foods, we would love to have you join us.   Contact: Mireya(at)myhealthyeatinghabits.com for details.

Jeanette at jeanetteshealthyliving ;

Martha at Simply Nourished Living ;

Mireya at Myhealthyeatinghabits ;

Alyce at More time at the table ;

Casey at My Sweet and Savory;

Alanna at Kitchen Parade Veggieventure;

Minnie at TheLady8Home

 

 

Baked Acorn Squash with Salmon Mousse

Ingredients

  • 1 Acorn squash
  • 1 salmon fillet
  • 1tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp roasted cumin powder
  • 2 green onions chopped (greens included)
  • 2 thai green chilies chopped
  • 3 tbs goat cheese with dill
  • 3 tbs fat free yogurt
  • a little salt if needed

Instructions

  1. Cut the squash into two and bake in a 400*F oven for about 25- 30 minutes (keep it cut side down)
  2. Once the squash is cooked and browned , remove from oven and allow to cool.
  3. Poach the salmon and let it cool. Once it is cool to touch blend with a pinch of salt in a mixer.
  4. In a bowl add the cumin, goat cheese, yogurt, green onions and chilies and add the Salmon in.
  5. Fold it all in and add the lemon juice and mix.
  6. To serve - put the mousse in the cooked acorn cups and serve with a light salad of watercress and radishes.
http://www.spiceroots.com/baked-acorn-squash-with-goat-cheese-salmon-mousse

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Jul 272012
 
brussel sprout spring salad

 

It’s Friday and we are on another episode of our 38 Power Foods Blog group.

38 Power Foods blog group  focuses on one ingredient each week taking inspiration from the book ; Power Foods: 150 Delicious Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients from the editors of the whole living magazine. Each week we all  come up with recipes, stories, articles to encourage eating nourishing food.

Who is we all ? The following wonderful people who make nourishing food and talk about it on their blogs. Do check what they have come up with this week. Also, If you are a blogger and  love the idea of being part of the 38 power foods, we would love to have you join us.   Contact: Mireya(at)myhealthyeatinghabits.com for details.

Jill and Margo at Saucy Cooks;

Jeanette at jeanetteshealthyliving ;

Martha at Simply Nourished Living ;

Mireya at Myhealthyeatinghabits ;

Alyce at More time at the table ;

Sarah at everything in the kitchen sink;

Casey at BookCase foodie

Bambi at adobodownunder

 

 

What can I say about this vegetable.  We had a hate love relationship.  I loved how cute they looked, but when I got some for cooking , thinking they were just small cabbages, I was in shock.  Lets just say they shocked me with their smell.

But I was not to give up on them so easy, because they look adorable and I am such a softie when a veggie looks so adorable. I discovered that I enjoyed them best when they were oven roasted, with a touch of balsamic and some himalayan salt.  Delicious! Here is a very healthy salad I love making – Brussels Sprouts and Sprouted Moong Salad

 

 

 

Brussels Sprouts and sprouted Moong Salad

Ingredients

  • 1/2 C sprouted moong
  • 1/4 C stewing lamb pieces - precooked ( I like them lightly boiled but you can roast or stir fry as well)
  • 1/2 C Brussels sprouts halved
  • a dash of balsamic vinegar ( I used a Tsp.. you can use more or less)
  • a pinch of Himalayan rock salt. ( use any salt. I had some so used it)
  • 1/2 tsp oil + 1/2 tsp oil
  • 1 tsp fresh mint chopped
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper crushed
  • 1/2 tsp of chopped thai green chilies
  • 1/2 C of spring onions chopped

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 *F
  2. Place the brussels sprouts in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle 1/2 tsp oil and vinegar over the sprouts and gently toss to coat. Sprinkle some salt and mix it in as well.
  3. Roast for 20 minutes turning once. They would be done when they are nicely browned.
  4. In a pan, add the other 1/2 tsp oil and saute the green onions, add the precooked lamb,the pepper and cook until the onions get a shine on them and wilt just slightly.
  5. Now add in the brussels sprouts from the oven, and mix and add the pepper.
  6. Just before serving add the moong beans, fresh mint and adjust seasonings.
http://www.spiceroots.com/brussels-sprouts-and-sprouted-moong-salad

 

 

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