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Breakfast – Monica's Spice Diary – Indian Food Blog

Chilli Cheese Parathas

Week two of my Facebook LIVE COOKERY CLASSES brought Chilli Cheese Parathas to the kitchen! Once you’ve been introduced to the deliciousness that is stuffed parathas, there is no turning back.

Chilli and cheese is such a great combination but you can stuff your parathas with whatever you like! Gobi Parathas (spiced cauliflower) are the paratha of choice in my home. Oh and Cheeni Parathas, which are stuffed with ghee and sugar. Honestly, you are winning whatever you choose. You can also use the dough to make plain chapatis or parathas which make the perfect accompaniment to your favourite curry or simply with a fried egg on top.

Have a go and let me know how they turn out for you! If you missed the live cookery class but want to catch up and watch, you can do so by clicking here. Also, if you have any dish suggestions for next week’s class, comment below or drop me a message on Instagram. I would love to hear from you!

Chilli Cheese Parathas

Servings 4 parathas


For the dough:

  • 1 cup (130g) chapati flour you can also use plain flour
  • 2 tbsp yoghurt
  • 1/4 cup + 1 to 2 tbsp warm water (this is a rough guide, you may need more or water depending on your flour type)
  • Oil for kneading

For the stuffing:

  • 150 g grated cheese I like to mix 1/2 cheddar & 1/2 mozzarella for flavour & texture but you can you use what you like!
  • 1/2 medium onion finely diced (I like to use red, you can you whatever you have)
  • 1 green chilli finely chopped or you can use chilli flakes/chilli powder
  • Handful fresh coriander finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp Carom/ajwain seeds optional
  • 3/4 tsp Salt or acc to taste
  • 1/2 tsp Black pepper

You will also need:

  • A non stick chapati tava pan/crepe pan/ non stick frying pan
  • A rolling Pin
  • A bowl with some chapati/plain flour in it for dusting


  • Place the flour in a mixing bowl. Add the yoghurt and rub in really well using your finger tips until it is completely mixed in. Then, add the water little by little. Use your hand to combine the flour and water to make a dough. You are looking for the dough to be soft and tacky but not overly wet. 
  • Now, very lightly grease your hand and begin to knead the dough for 2-3 minutes until you have a smooth and pliable dough. Cover with cling film/damp tea towel and leave aside for 10-15 minutes.
  • In a bowl, mix together the stuffing ingredients. Keep aside. 
  • Now heat a tava/non-stick frying/crepe pan on high heat. Once the pan is hot, reduce to a low heat whilst you prepare the parathas.
  • Divide your dough into 4 equal dough balls. Roll each one so they are smooth and round. 
  • Dip one dough ball into the bowl of dry flour and with a rolling pin, begin to roll out until the size of a starter plate, forming a chapati
  • Divide your cheese stuffing into 4 portions. Place one portion of the stuffing in the centre of the chapati and bring together all of the edges so that they meet in the middle. Press down so it is sealed.
  • Dip the sealed stuffed dough ball in the flour and shake off any excess. Place on your work surface and roll out gently until it is 7-8″ in diameter and even in thickness all the way around.
  • Increase the heat of your pan to the maximum setting. Carefully pick up the paratha, web your fingers and flip the paratha from hand to hand to get rid of any excess flour.
  • Place it on the hot pan. When it changes colour and small bubbles begin to appear turn it over and cook the other side.
  • Cook until paratha is golden, then flip and cook until golden and all over and crispy. Finish by smearing a teaspoon of ghee or butter. • Make the rest of the parathas using the same process. Keep them wrapped in a towel or foil until ready to serve.

Masala Porridge

Covid-19 is here in the UK and we sadly have no idea for how long. The supermarket shelves are becoming empty. Panic buying is a very real thing. Oh and move over sterling, toilet paper is our new currency.

For those of you who are finding it difficult to source ingredients or are currently in isolation, I wanted to share a series of recipes consisting of my favourite simple recipes using store cupboard staples!

Today’s recipe is one I make at least twice a week. Cook it for breakfast, lunch or dinner – it’s quick, easy and you can pack it with as many veggies as you like.

 I love that it’s creamy, crunchy & spicy all in one. It’s also accidentally vegan, gluten free & oil free so tis a proper crowd pleaser. I like to top the porridge with mango pickle & some Greek yoghurt. My other half really likes a fried egg on top – but then I think he likes a fried egg on top of most things. Point is – get creative people!

This recipe asks for fresh coriander if you have it in. A nice little tip on keeping fresh herbs like coriander for longer, is to wash and dry them well (a salad spinner is best followed by patting dry with a tea towel). Then, finely chop with stems and pop in a freezer safe bag and then into the freezer. That way, you can add a handful to your cooking as and when you need!

If you’re on instagram, peep my “Masala Porridge” highlights to view a step by step tutorial on how to cook it.

For those in isolation who have any recipe requests or questions, please comment below. I am more than happy to help.

Take care y’all x

Masala Porridge

Cook Time 8 minutes
Servings 2 people


  • 1 cup (approx 110g) porridge oats
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tomato diced diced
  • 1 small carrot finely diced (you can add whatever veg you like – broccoli, sweetcorn/peas/beans all work well)
  • 1 green birds eye chilli finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 tsp double concentrate tomato puree (you can also use 2-3 tbsp passata)
  • 3/4 tsp salt or according to taste
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 3/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp amchur/mango powder Or you can use a good squeeze of half a lime
  • handful fresh coriander roughly chopped (optional)
  • You wil also need water


  • Heat a non-stick pan. Once hot, tip in the porridge oats followed by the cumin seeds.
  • Toast on a medium/high heat, stirring continuously.
  • After a minute or two, when you see the oats being to change colour and become slightly darker, add the tomatoes, carrots and chilli as well as the tomato puree. 
  • Now add enough water so everything is just covered. 
  • Now add salt, turmeric, paprika, garam masala and amchur/lime juice.Mix well.
  • Allow the porridge to thicken slightly and come to a boil. Reduce to low/medium heat and simmer for a further minute.
  • Sprinkle on fresh coriander and remove from heat. Taste for salt/chilli and adjust accordingly. 
  • Enjoy on its own or with a dollop of Greek yoghurt and your favourite pickle!

Spicy Chickpea Pancakes (Besan ka Puda)

Today is Shrove Tuesday – the day before Ash Wednesday and is chiefly celebrated by feasting on pancakes. Lots of them. My kind of celebration.

As a kid I used to enjoy the English crepe style pancakes topped with lemon and sugar. Simple, satisfying and delish. When I lived in the States whilst at uni, I was introduced to the American style pancakes. Soft and fluffy (with ridiculous toppings). Also delish.

There is another type of pancake that I also enjoy and that’s the Punjabi one aka Besan Ka Puda. Made from gram flour, spices, coriander & red onions – it’s spicy, crispy and soft all at the same time. And yes you guessed it – it also gets FULL MARKS on the delish scale. Served with a dollop of yoghurt alongside your favourite pickle and washed down with a cup of hot milky tea, it’s a real crowd and stomach pleaser. Here’s a delicious garlic dill zucchini pickles recipe you could pair with it. Want to know how to make it? Course you do! Scroll on down for the recipe. Ps. This pancake is accidentally gluten free & vegan (without tasting like it). Win win I say.

Spicy Chickpea Pancakes (Besan ka Puda)

Servings 4


  • 2 cups (180g) gram flour (chickpea flour)
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt or according to taste
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 3/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 3/4 tsp paprika
  • 2 green chillies finely chopped
  • 1 large handful fresh coriander finely chopped
  • 1/4 tsp mango powder (amchur)
  • 1/4 tsp asafoetida (hing) optional
  • 2 cups water (same cups used to measure flour)
  • oil


  • Add 1 tsp of oil in the non stick frying pan and spread over using a kitchen paper. Heat the frying pan on a medium/high heat setting. 
  • Place all ingredients apart from the oil into a large bowl. Whisk well for 1-2 minutes until ingredients have combined together to create a thin batter. Taste for salt and chilli before cooking and adjust accordingly.
  • Pour in 1 ladle of batter and tilt the pan so that the batter spreads all over the base. Reduce heat to low/medium then cook for 2 to 3minutes, or until it starts to come away from the sides. Brush the pancake with a little oil.
  • Once golden underneath, flip the pancake over and cook the other side for 2-3 minutes, or until cooked through.
  • The pancake should be slightly crispy on the edges and golden brown all over. Remove and serve with greek yoghurt and your favourite Indian pickles/chutneys. Repeat with the remaining batter.