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WELCOME…BIENVENIDO

Welcome to my world… a SPICY world… a colorful world… a world of love and passion..FOR FOOD… be a part of this aromatic world..and let yourself be swept by the aromas and flavours of a culinary experience.. easy and exotic recipes with simple ingredients..WELCOME TO THE WORLD OF “NITU DIDI”…enjoy yourself …after all “cooking is like making love.. or you do it well…or I TEACH YOU!!!”

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VEGETARIAN THALI / TANGY DAAL , SPICY POTATO AND PURI

DAAL

Daal is our staple food in India and we have a huge range of lentils ( daals) and a million ways to make them. I hail from the state of Sindh and we have our own typical way of cooking our daals. People who visit sindhi homes are so fond of our cooking as its quite different. I being me, always need to tweak my recipes and bring out different flavours. On Mondays, we Sindhis are vegetarians and one of our staple meals ( at least when I was a child, this was OUR FAMILY meal ….daal, spiced potatoes and puris). So, today lets make some daal, spiced potatoes and puris !!

I have a facebook live video on my facebook page Nitu Didi Recipes showing how i made the daal . i will try and insert the link here.

FOR THE DAAL

1 cup of yellow mung daal, washed thoroughly and soaked overnight

3 green chillies, or less

6 cloves of garlic

2 ” piece ginger chopped

Juice of 1 lime or more

1/4 cup of chopped coriander leaves

1/2 teaspoon turmeric, salt to taste

4 tablespoons of oil

Chilli flakes to taste

METHOD:

Put the washed and soaked daal in a pressure cooker with a cup of water and bring it to a boil without covering it. Remove all the foam that forms with a spoon ( this gives the daal a creamy smooth taste and texture ). Add 1/4 cup more of water with the chopped green chillies and salt and cover and pressure cook for 2 whistles. If you dont have a pressure cooker just cook the daal with about 2.5 cups of water till its soft-

Once the daal is cooked, and the pressure cooker has cooled down, open the lid and beat the daal with a fork till its smooth and creamy. Heat oil in a pot and add the garlic and sautee till its slightly beige in colour and then add the ginger and sautee again, add the turmeric and the chilli flakes and then add the daal. Mix well. Add some more water if you like it a bit runny and bring to a boil. Add coriander leaves and the lemon juice. Enjoy your lovely creamy daal.

SPICED POTATOES

300 grams or 2 medium sized potatoes, cut into cubes

1 medium onion, chopped fine

2 ” `piece ginger chopped

1 teaspoon of cumin seeds

8 to 10 curry leaves

3-4 green chillies chopped fine

1 teaspoon of roasted cumin powder, black pepper to taste, 1 teaspoon of dry mango powder ( amchur)

3 tablespoons of oil

METHOD:
hear the oil in a non stick pan, add the cumin seeds and after 10 seconds add the chopped onions and the ginger. Cook stirring well till the onions change colour ( do not brown). Add the potatoes, the salt, the spices  ( except the dry mango powder  ) and cover and cook till the potatoes are done, stirring ocasionally. Once they are cooked taste and correct the seasoning and then add the mango powder and mix well.

FOR THE PURIS

PURI

Puris are deep fried roti like bread.

There is a technique to fry them which  i will show on the video.

INGREDIENTS FOR PURI

1 cup whole wheat flour , (can also use White flour)

½ teaspoon  each of salt and black pepper

Water as needed to make a dough

Mix  the flour with the salt and pepper. Add wáter bit by bit to make a smooth dough, Knead for five minutes. Make small balls and roll out and deep fry.

Puris

facebook live video

Posted in Everything Vegetarian, Floury Matter, Healthy Options, Ideas for meals, Recipes with videos, sindhi, Uncategorized, Vegan | Tagged | Leave a comment

EASY PEASY QUICK ONION DIP

dip

This is one of my signature dishes which I take to every potluck and picnic. It is so embarassing when I am asked how I made it because it is so easy ! I made up this recipe once after reading the ingredients on a store bought ready made dip mix. I then played around with ingredients over the years and now I have found the perfect blend of garlic, onion and chillies. If you do make this, you can adjust all the seasoning according to your taste. Normal yogurt can be substituted for lactose free, vegan and greek yogurt. Garlic can be omitted if you cant stand it. Feel free to add your own ingredients and let me know!

This recipe has been made by my student Elena while we were learning English. Its a good way to start kids to learn to cook in the kitchen . You can serve this dip with chips, crackers, crudites, fried samosas, chicken nuggets etc… its yum with almost anything ! Even as a sandwich spread.

SO…here is how you make it!

INGREDIENTS:

500 grams of yogurt of your choice

1 sachet of onion soup mix

Garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper powder and chilli powder to taste

1/2 cup of fresh coriander leaves chopped fine ( please omit if you dont like coriander)

1/4 cup of spring onions chopped fine

METHOD:

Mix all the ingredients together. Taste and adjust seasoning to your likes. Keep it  for an hour so that the yogurt soaks in all the spices.

Serve chilled and enjoy!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m1pvqbhGdjk&feature=youtu.be

 

elena dip

Posted in Everything Vegetarian, Fusion, Healthy Options, Low Cost, Nitu´s Spicy Delights, Quick Recipes, Recipes with videos, Snacks, Uncategorized, Veg Starters | Leave a comment

EASY PEASY CHOCOLATE TRUFFLES

TrufflesFor the upcoming Indian festival Raksha Bandhan  where a sister ties her brother a hand band on his wrist to enforce their sibling love and thank him for always being there for her, it is a tradition to feed your brother with something sweet. Sisters go out of their way making an effort to please him by making new types of either indian or western sweets  ( eggless ofcourse as Raksha Bandhan falls on a full moon day and most Indians abstain from meat that day).

Anyways , festival explanations apart, I would like to tell you about this recipe which was given to me by a dear friend Alexandra Reira for dessert. I found it so delicious that I asked her for the recipe and she smiled and said,  “Recipe? This is so easy!”. Well, here is the ” easy peasy ” recipe , tweaked a little bit by me. Do try it out . You will enjoy it!

The recipe makes about 50-60 truffles so please halve the recipe if you want less.

INGREDIENTS

300 grams of biscuits ( not cookies ) of your choice, I used ginger biscuits

200 grams of  dark chocolate, chopped

200 ml of double cream

A bit of icing sugar if you want it extra sweet ( i didnt add)

2 tablespoons of Baileys Irish Liquer ( or more if you want, or omit this!)

Chocolate sprinkles for decoration

Chopped caramlized nuts for decoration

 

METHOD:

Powder the biscuits in a food processor and then tip into a bowl. Melt  the double cream and the chocolate in the microwave using 15 second intervals so as not to burn it. Add the melted chocolate to the biscuits. Mix well and then add the Baileys if you wish or extra icing sugar after tasting it. Please do not drink the whole bottle of Baileys! Mix it all very well and try not to keep on tasting it like I did! I used rubber gloves to do this so that the mixture wouldnt get into my nails. If the mixture is too soggy you can refrigerate it til it gets a little firm . Mix the chocolate sprinkles and the caramalized nuts in a plate. Make balls out of these delicious choco biscuit mixture and coat with the sprinkle mixture. Put it in a container and keep it hidden or else someone will find it and eat it all up and then u wont have any!!!

ENJOY!

Posted in Desserts, Eggless Sweet Temptations, Low Cost, Quick Recipes, Sinful, Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

QUICK PEPPER CHICKEN

We are always looking for quick and delicious recipes which use easily available ingredients specially in these trying times. Chicken is very versatile and can be made in many ways.  Todays simple recipe is delicious and light. The spice can be adjusted to ones taste and thus kids friendly too!

INGREDIENTS FOR 2

350 grams of boneless chicken, ( i used boneless thigh, breast can get dry and hard) If using chicken with bones, you can use about 600 grams.

1 tablespoon cumin seeds

2″ piece ginger, chopped fine

2-3 green chillies, chopped fine

8 fresh or dried curry leaves

1 heaped teaspoon ground black pepper ( or less, or more !)

1 medium sized potato, peeled and cubed

Juice of half a lime or lemon

Salt to taste

4 tablespoons of cooking oil

1/ 2 teaspoon turmeric

1 cup fresh coriander leaves chopped fine

METHOD

Heat the oil in a pot or a pan, add the cumin seeds and allow them to splutter for 10 seconds. Then add the chopped ginger and green chillies and cook for another 10 seconds. Add the chicken and the potatoes and cook till the chicken  starts oozing out its own juices. Increase the flame and stir continuously till the chicken gets browned. Once a bit brown, add all the spices, curry leaves,  salt, and cover it and let it cook on low heat. When using boneless chicken you do not need to add any water to this. If using chicken with bones you need to add water or else the chicken wont be thoroughly cooked.

When both the chicken and potatoes are cooked , add the lemon juice and coriander leaves.

Your yummilicious chicken is ready to be eaten! You can eat this with rice, rotis , naans etc.

Posted in Chicken, Gluten Free, Healthy Options, Ideas for meals, Low Cost, Quick Recipes, Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

SINDHI CURRY / TOMATO CURRY

sindhi curry

Sindhi Curry is one of the most famous Sindhi dishes. Think Sindhi and our curry comes into your mind. People all over India who are non sindhis and who have sindhi friends just love it and loved to be invited for lunch if curry is made. Its quite easy to make tho there are a few “must do rules” if you want the authentic taste.  There are also many different ingredients, but i will teach you the authentic one. Our curry has a tangy sweetish taste, but this can be adapted to ones palate. I like it not too sweet and very spicy. For that you can increase the quantity of red chilli powder and green chillies used for your recipe.

We also have tomato curry which is made in the same way except that instead of water, pureed boiled tomatoes are added-

tomato curry

The method is exactly the same, as you can see from the picture, tomato curry is bright red in colour. So, lets start with our ingredients which i will list in order to make cooking easy,. please keep all ingredients at hand before starting. Pre chop the vegetables you want to use such as ( cubed potatoes, carrot slices, full okra ( lady fingers/ bhinid), cluster beans, french beans, lotus stem rounds, cubed yam, corn on the cob,  and drum sticks, now some people also add cauliflower, brocolli, and other vegetables. I dont. By the way the pic of the curry is courtesy Shradha Chattani.

FOR 4-6 people

5 tablespoons of cooking oil ( sunflower, corn , or light olive oil)

1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds ( important ingredient, cannot be omitted if you want the authenticy of the curry)

1/2 teaspoon asafoetida ( hing), this is very important ingredient

1 tablespoon cumin seeds

3 tablespoons gram flour  ( besan )

10 fresh or dried curry leaves

2 litres of water and salt to taste

1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder, 1/2 teaspoon of red chilli powder

Few chopped green chillies, 1 inch grated ginger

6 tablespoons of tamarind pulp ( freshly squeezed or store bought, if store bought try to buy one which is not so dark)

2-3 tablespoons of palm sugar , or normal sugar or to taste

Vegetables of your choice, add the ones that take longer time to cook and then gradually add the other ones.

Chopped Coriander leaves

METHOD FOR SINDHI CURRY

Heat the oil in a big pot and when heated add the fenugreek seeds and let them pop, then add the asafoetida and let it cook for 5 seconds and then the cumin seeds and let them pop. Soon after add the gram flour and now cook this gram flour on low flame stirring all the time till it changed its colour to a pale brown ( DO NOT BROWN IT) . If you burn it you will need to start all over again, ( this is the most important step in the curry). Once its pale brown add the chopped ginger, green chillies and cook for 2 seconds. Remove from heat and add the water  ( i say remove from heat so that there is no spluttering, if you dont remove it from heat, the water will splash and you might burn yourself ). Once you add the water, you can add the turmeric, red chilli powder , curry leaves and boil this for about 15 minutes. You will soon see how the gram flour has blended with the water . This shows you are on the right track. Now add the vegetables of your choice according to their cooking time.  Add the tamarind pulp, the sugar and taste it. It should taste tangy and a bit sweetish. You can add less or more of tamarind pulp or sugar to taste. You can also make it thinner by adding more water, This recipe can be adapted to ones taste.

Boil this curry till the vegetables are done. To finish it garnish it with chopped coriander leaves.

NOW FOR THE TOMATO CURRY

Follow the same recipe but instead of plain water just boil 6 red tomatoes in 2 litres of water and some ginger and green chillies. Blend it into a puree and add this to the above recipe instead of plain water. I find the tomato curry so delicious that I dont add any veggies to it sometimes and just have it like a soup.

NITU DIDI TIP

The tomato curry is rich in Vitamin C and very nourishing . By reducing the amount of oil used, it can be used for a calorie controlled diet-.

FOR JAINS: just omit the ginger

AND FINALLY

here is the curry i made, dalgona style!

sindhi curry dalgona

 

Please enjoy making this and relishing it. I will be happy to answer all your questions. Do follow my blog to get all updates and latest recipes.

HAPPY COOKING!

 

Posted in Everything Vegetarian, Gluten Free, Healthy Options, Ideas for meals, Jain recipes, Low Cost, sindhi, Uncategorized, Vegan | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Spicy Chicken Masala

SPICY CHICKEN MASALA

Ever craved delicious spicy restaurant style chicken and never seem to get it right? Well, this finger licking spicy chicken will not only tickle your tastebuds but will also leave you satisfied. If spicy food is not for you, just reduce the amount of chilli powder I have used in this recipe.  I made this during lockdown and recorded a step by step video of it too. The video has been recorded by me so its not very professional but the steps are clear.

INGREDIENTS

1 kilo chicken, skin off and cut into small pieces

Marinade for chicken : 200 grams plain white yogurt ( dahi), 2 tablespoons ginger garlic paste ( make a paste out of 4-5 cloves of garlic and 1.5 ” piece ginger) , 1/2 teaspoon turmeric, 1 teaspoon red chilli powder ( less if you want), 1 teaspoon garam masala (home made preferably. The link to my home made garam masala video will be at the end of the recipe) and salt to taste-.  Marinate the chicken preferably overnight and if not then just for a few hours.

 

FOR THE ONION PASTE

2 onons roughly chopped, 1 black cardamom, 1 bay leaf, 2 tablespoons coriander seeds, 2 tablespoons cumin seeds, 2-3 cloves, 2-3 green cardamoms , 4 tablespoons oil

Heat the oil in a wide pan and add the whole spices and cook for about 30 seconds. Then add the roughly chopped onions and cook till soft. Add salt to taste and leave to cool. When cooled , blend it to a paste

FOR THE TOMATO PASTE

2 ripe red tomatoes, 1.5 ” ginger , 2-3 cloves of garlic, blend into a paste.

COOKING THE CHICKEN

Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a wide pan and cook the tomato paste till well cooked ( see the video) and then add the marinated chicken and cook till the juices from the chicken dry out. Then add some chilli powder to taste ( i added kashmiri chilli powder, deggi chilli powder and red chilli powder) . Add the onion paste and mix well. Add salt and some water ( more water if you want more sauce) and cook till chicken is done.

Delicious with rotis  or rice

You tube video.

SPICY CHICKEN MASALA

How to make home made garam masala

 

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CAULIFLOWER MINCE

Cauliflower mince is a very popular way of cooking this versatile vegetable . It tastes very different from the regular cauliflower recipes. It can be used as pie or wrap filling too. I honestly just love to have it with rotis and  a raita. It is very satisfying and a great substitute for minced meat.

INGREDIENTS

1 cup of chopped onions

2 cups of finely chopped cauliflower

1 tomato, chopped

1 tablespoon of ginger garlic paste

1 teaspoon of cumin seeds

A pinch of turmeric powder ( more for its curative properties than colour or taste)

Chopped green chillies and salt to taste

1/2 cup of coriander leaves

1/2 teaspoon of garam masala ( optional)

4 tablespoons of oil ( sunflower or olive)

METHOD

Heat the oil in a pan, i used a wok because i like a wide cooking surface for my food. Once heated add the cumin seeds and let them splutter, then add the  chopped onions and let them  brown without covering the pan. Once they are browned add the ginger garlic paste and chopped green chillies and cook for half a minute. Then add salt and about 1/4 cup of water and let the whole mixture cook till the oil leaves the sides of the pan.

Once the onion mixture is dry add the turmeric powder and the minced cauliflower and mix. Add the tomatoes and chopped coriander leaves and cook till the tomato softens. Check seasoning and correct if necessary. You can then add garam masala and red chilli powder if you wish.

A delicious way to eat cauliflower. I had it with rotis and also a simple raita which was chopped onions, tomatoes, green chillies and coriander leaves. I added salt and chaat masala

This is a complete simple vegetarian meal.

For the live video on facebook

https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=2933751016690327&id=100001663710893

 

 

 

Posted in Everything Vegetarian, Gluten Free, Healthy Options, Ideas for meals, Low Cost, Recipes with videos, Spices, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

DAAL AND PURI / LENTILS WITH FRIED BREAD

daal puri

Daal ( lentils) are a staple part of the Indian diet, with so many vegetarians . They are a great source of protein and there are umpteen ways to cook them. They are not expensive and a small amount goes a long way.  This récipe is quite delicious and has a touch of Mumbai Street food.  So…shall we start?

INGREDIENTS:

½ cup each of channa daal and red lentils

2 cups of wáter or as needed

4 tablespoons of oil ( can use sunflower or olive or even ghee)

1 tablespoon of cumin seeds

2” piece ginger, chopped fine

2 green chillies

1 teaspoon of  turmeric powder

Salt to taste

FOR THE ONION TOPPING

1 medium sized onion, cut fine

2 green chillies, optional

¼ cup coriander leaves

½ teaspoon dry mango powder ( amchoor)

½ teaspoon chaat masala

½ teaspoon red chilli powder

Salt to taste

METHOD:

Soak the lentils overnight ( if you cant, then at least six hours). Wash them and put them to cook with 2 cups of wáter ( if using a pressure cooker, use less wáter) . I skim off all the froth . Once there is no froth, i add the green chillies and cook the lentils till they are done.

Heat the oil in a pot and then add the cumin seeds and let them sizzle for 15 seconds and then add the chopped ginger, and then the turmeric and immediately pour your daal. Add salt and cook for about 15 minutes till they are nice and mushy. While the daal is cooking mix all the ingredients for the onion topping.  Serve on top of the daal like a topping

 

PURI

Puris are deep fried roti like bread.

There is a technique to fry them which  i will show on the video.

INGREDIENTS FOR PURI

1 cup whole wheat flour , (can also use White flour)

½ teaspoon  each of salt and black pepper

Water as needed to make a douggh

Mix  the flour with the salt and pepper. Add wáter bit by bit to make a smooth dough, Knead for five minutes. Make small balls and roll out and deep fry.Puris

Posted in Everything Vegetarian, Floury Matter, Healthy Options, Ideas for meals, Lentils, Low Cost, Recipes with videos, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Tomato Rice

Tomato riceThis recipe is an excellent way of using left over white rice. It is delicately flavoured with a few spices and ofcourse the goodness of tomatoes.

INGREDIENTS :

2 cups of cooked basmati or any kind of rice

1/2 teaspoon each of mustard and cumin seeds

1/4 teaspoon of turmeric powder and salt to taste

2 medium sized tomatoes

2 cloves of garlic,  1/2 ” piece ginger, 2 green chilles and 2 tablespoons of fresh coriander leaves

2 tablespoons of oil

METHOD:

Heat the oil in a pan and add the mustard seeds and let them splutter, then add the cumin seeds and after  a few seconds the garlic and ginger. Meanwhile chop the tomatoes in the chopper with the green chillies and coriander. Add this to the oil with the turmeric and salt and cook till done. Then add the boiled rice, mix well and cook covered for 2-3 minutes.

This rice is delicious.

For the youtube video , click here

Tomato Rice

Posted in Everything Vegetarian, Fusion, Gluten Free, Healthy Options, Ideas for meals, Low Cost, Recipes with videos, Rice is Nice, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

CRISPY ONION PANCAKES

onion pancakeThese pancakes are a huge favourite in my family. My kids can snack on them anytime, eat them plain, with a dip or with a curry! These are really easy to make and to guide you through the process i have a simple video . During these difficult Corona days, i have been cooking at odd times and sometimes on the spur of the moment and so the videos are not complete, but you can get an idea. So lets start!

INGREDIENTS:

500 grams of white flour

150 grams of spring onions, chopped fine

1 teaspoon of salt, 1/2 teaspoon of white pepper

6 tablespoons of oil ( i used sunflower oil, you can use olive oil but the change will taste)

1/2 teaspoon of baking soda

Water as needed and extra oil for cooking the pancakes

Mix the flour with the salt , pepper and then add the chopped spring onions, and the rest of the ingredients and then gradually add water to make a stiff dough. Knead the dough for at least 6 minutes to make it really smooth . Keep it aside for half an hour. Make balls and roll into rounds ( or try !) as thin as possible. Heat a frying pan, crepe pan or an iron skillet and cook the pancakes like i have shown on the video.

Green Onion Pancakes

Posted in Everything Vegetarian, Floury Matter, Fusion, Low Cost, Made in China, Recipes with videos, Uncategorized, Veg Starters | Leave a comment