Spicy Okra (Bhindi) with Yellow Peppers and Onions

I love making this okra dish. It’s one my brother’s favourite dishes and he ensures that it is made at least once a week in the house. He does nothing to help his desire become a reality of course, apart from vocalizing his wants in the kitchen. However, luckily for him, I’m an amazing sister (and it’s ridiculously easy to make, but don’t tell him that). Best served with chapatis and a lot of people eat it with yoghurt too. The good thing about okra is that it can be made in so many ways-I think this is my third okra recipe now! Also, it’s really nutritious.
Check it out, let me know how what you think 🙂

Serves 4:

What we need:
1lb okra
3 tbsp olive oil
1 onion sliced
1/2 yellow pepper, diced
2 tomato roughly diced
1 tsp cumin seeds
Pinch of asafoetida powder
1 1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp chilli powder
1/4 tsp amchur (mango powder)
Handful fresh coriander (cilantro)

How we do:

  • Heat oil in pan. Add the cumin seeds. Once they begin to sizzle, add okra, salt, turmeric powder and asafoetida powder. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring continuously on medium heat.
  • Add the onion, yellow pepper and the rest of the spices except amchur. Mix and cook until you see the sticky threads disappear.
  • At this point, add the tomatoes, fresh coriander and amchur and cook for a further 5 minutes.
  • When you see the oil has separated from the okra, your dish is ready!
  • BALLE BALLE! Enjoy 🙂

Urad Dal Masala

If you go to an  Indian grocery store you will see that urad dal is available in three types:
1) Whole urad dal which is black
2) Split urad dal which is black and white
3) Split and washed urad dal which is white.

In today’s recipe I used the 3rd type also known as ‘white lentil’. In Indian cuisine it is generally used to make a dry dal masala dish, unlike most dal dishes which are quite liquidy in consistency. I was never the biggest fan of this dish as a kid but I’ve got older I’ve oddly grown to love it. The thing that I love about cooking this dal is that it’s so simple to make-you don’t need a pressure cooker. You won’t find this dish at any Indian restaurant but it’s regularly made in the Sawhney household!  Check out the recipe and try out this authentic dal dish for yourself 🙂

Serves 4

What we need:

For dahl:
250g split washed urad dal (white in colour)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp turmeric
For Masala:
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp mustard seeds
Pinch of asafoetida powder (hing)
1/2 onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, grated
2 tbsp ginger, grated
2 large fresh tomatoes
1 tsp tomato puree
4 mushrooms, diced (optional)
1/2 green or red chilli, finely diced (optional)
1/2 cup of fresh coriander (cilantro), finely chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garam maslala
Pinch paprika powder

How we do:

  • Soak the dal in water for 2-4 hours.
  • In a pot, add the dal and add water so it is approx 2″ above the dal. Add salt and turmeric powder. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 10 minutes or until the dal becomes soft. If there is any excess water, drain it.
  • Heat the oil in a pan. Once hot, add the cumin seeds, mustard seeds and asafoetida powder. When they begin to sizzle, add the onion and fresh chilli. Mix well and cook until golden brown.
  • Add the garlic and ginger. Cook four a couple minutes and add the salt, garam masala and paprika powder. Add the tomatos and puree. Mix and cook for a  few minutes. Now add the mushrooms and stir.
  • Once the oil begins to separate from the masala, add the dal and mix well for 2-3 minutes. Add the coriander.
  • BALLE BALLE! You’re good to go. Best served with hot chappatis.

Sesame Chilli Paneer with Stir Fry Vegetables

I’ve recently had a few readers ask about new paneer recipes. Being a fellow paneer lover,  I jumped on the challenge! So tonight, mamma and I got creative in the kitchen. What we ended up with, as the title clearly spells out for you, is a sesame chilli paneer dish mixed with stir fry vegetables.  When making the sauce, we experimented with diff quantities of each ingredient to make it just right. Try it out, let me know how it goes. As always, the recipe is customizable so you can add whatever vegetables you like.  Also, if you’re not the biggest fan of sesame seeds, leave it out! Cashews/almonds work  really well too 🙂

Serves 4

What we need:
250g cubed paneer
3 tbsp corn flour
4 garlic cloves, grated
1 big onion, sliced
2″ ginger, thinly sliced
1 big green pepper, cut into 1″ squares
10 chestnut mushrooms, quartered
2 cupfuls broccoli, thinly sliced
3 cupfuls cabbage, thinly sliced
5 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp chilli sauce
2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
2 tbsp concentarted curry sauce paste
2 cups water
2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp paprika
pinch of black pepper
5 tbsp sesame oil
2tbsp sesame seeds
handful peanuts

How we do:

  • In a bowl, add the paneer, 1 tbsp corn flour,  1 clove grated garlic, 1 tsp salt, paprika & pepper. Mix well.
  • Heat 1 tbsp sesame oil in a non stick pan. Add the paneer and scatter them in the pan so they separate. Brown them on one side and turn it over to cook the other side. Remove from pan.
  • In the same pan, on high heat, add the peanuts and dry roast them. Once browned, add the sesame seeds. Remove once golden. Keep your eyes  on the pan. They brown in 30 seconds!
  • In a bowl add the soy sauce, chilli sauce, sweet chilli sauce, curry paste (crumbled), 2 tbsp corn flour, water and 1 tsp salt.  Mix well.
  • In a wok, heat 4 tbsp sesame oil  on high heat. Add the garlic and ginger. Sautee them for 1 minute. Now add all the vegetables. Stir for 2-3 minutes. Now add the paneer.
  • Add 1/2 sauce prepared earlier and stir well. Keep stirring for 2-3 minutes. Gradually add the remaning sauce  whilst stirring the vegetables constantly over the course of 2-3 minutes.
  • Once the sauce has thickened and glaze all the vegetables, sprinkle the sesame seeds and peanuts on top.
  • Balle Balle! You’re done! Best served with boiled rice.