Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks

The world famous Indian Tandoori Chicken has its origin in the Mughal era during the rule of Emperor Jahangir, who is also credited for creating the portable or transportable tandoor.

Tandoor is a traditional clay oven holding a small fire created by slow burning coal or wood meant for baking and cooking.

Existence of the tandoor has been found at sites of the Indus Valley Civilization (Harappa and Mohenjo-daro) dating back to 3000 B.C.

Originally the tandoor cooking concept was from Persia which traveled to the Indian sub-continent with the Arabs via Afghanistan. 

The word Tandoor is derived from the Persian word "Tannur" which was derived from the Babylonian word "Tinuru" which further got polished to the word "Tandur" in Turkish.

The concept of built-in tandoor in a restaurant was first introduced at Moti Mahal restaurant in Delhi in the year 1948.

The restaurant owner Kundan Lal Gujral, wanted to create a unique dish using the traditional tandoor.

This lead to the creation of the famous "Tandoori Chicken".

The chicken pieces are marinated with yogurt, fresh lime or lemon juice, seasoned with Cayenne pepper, Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder, tandoori masala, turmeric powder, garlic paste, ginger paste and salt.

The chilly powder gives a red fiery hue and the turmeric powder gives an orange hue to the Tandoori Chicken. Some times yellow and red edible food colors are added to get bright colors.

Tandoori Chicken can also be cooked on a modern or traditional barbecue grill. I have cooked it on a gas stove using a skillet/tawa.

You can use an oven at 200 Degree/400 Fahrenheit for 10-12 minutes or until done.

The most simplest Indian non-vegetarian starters, it goes best when served with Mint/Pudina dip/chutney or with onion rings and lemon wedges.

Check out the ingredients and step by step method for preparing Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks.

Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks

Preparation/Total Time: 120 mins/180 mins
Servings: 3-4


10 Chicken Drumsticks
1 Lemon
1 tsp Garlic paste
1 tsp Ginger paste
6 Tbsp Hung Yogurt/Curd/Dahi
1 tsp Kashmiri Red Chilly powder
2 Tbsp Garam Masala or Tandoori Chicken Masala powder
1 Tbsp melted Butter for basting


1. Wash, pat dry the chicken drumsticks with a clean cloth.

2. Make diagonal incisions on both sides of the drumsticks with a knife.

3. Now squeeze in the lemon juice and apply some salt to the drumsticks and keep aside for about 15 minutes.

4. Mix garlic paste, ginger paste, garam masala or tandoori masala, yogurt, Kashmiri red chilly powder, salt.

5. Marinade each drumsticks properly with the above mixture and keep aside for about 2 hours.

6. Now apply/baste each drumstick with the melted butter and keep aside.

7. Heat a non-stick Skillet/Tawa on medium flame.

8. Place each drumstick one by one on the skillet and cook on low flame for about 40 minutes or till the drumsticks are done.

Tip: Slow cooking method is ideal when making tandoori chicken on a gas stove.

9. Flip and cook each side of the drumsticks while basting them with the remaining marinade and melted butter.

10. Once done remove on a serving platter and serve with onions rings, lemon wedges or mint/pudina dip/chutney. You can sprinkle some chaat masala also.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Step by Step Recipe for Hyderabadi Bhuna Mutton Keema/Kheema/Qeema (Dry fried Minced Lamb Meat)

Hyderabadi cuisine is a blend of Mughlai, Arabic, Turkish cooking style along with local Marathwada and Telugu influence. Also known as Hyderabadi Ghizaayat (cuisine), this style of cooking was promoted by Sultan Quli of the Qutub Shahi Dynasty along with their own cuisine.

The cuisine evolved during the medieval period and was extended during modern period as a legacy of the Nizams of the then Hyderabad State that includes the regions of Marathwada, Telangana and Hyderabad Karnataka(currently in Karnataka).

Traditionally Hyderabadi style of cooking involves use of earthen pots, brass and copper utensils. The use of certain herbs, spices and condiments adds a distinct flavour to the Hyderabadi cuisine.

As the saying goes cooking patiently or "itmenaan se", so the key to the cuisine is the slow-cooking method.

Traditionally Bhuna Keema is prepared with minced lamb meat or keema which is fried with spices and condiments in oil or ghee/fat. 

This version of the recipe has been prepared using less oil and more of green chillies instead of the usual Red Chilly powder.

The recipe was shared by my former Hyderabadi cook during my stay in Mumbai. I have made use of fresh Green peas (Matar) in this recipe.

Being a dry spicy starter, Hyderabadi Mutton Bhuna Keema or Kheema or Qeema goes well with roti, naan, phulka or even steamed rice.

Hyderabadi Bhuna Mutton Keema

Preparation/Total Time:60-120 mins/150 mins
Serving: 4

Ingredients for Marinade:

500 gm Minced Mutton
1/2 cup Beaten Curd/Dahi
1 Tbsp Garlic Paste
1 tsp Turmeric/Haldi Powder
Salt to Taste


1. Clean the minced meat in running water and drain the water properly.
2. Add the garlic paste, turmeric powder, curd, salt to the meat. Mix well and keep aside for about 1 to 2 hours.

Ingredients for Frying:

1 1/2 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
2 large Onions, finely chopped
2 medium size Tomatoes,finely chopped
2-3 Green Chillies, chopped
1 tsp whole Shahjeera or Jeera/Cumin seed
1/2 tsp whole Green Cardamom/Chhoti Elaichi
1" grated Ginger
1/2 tsp whole Black Peppercorns/Kaali Mirch
1 Black Cardamom/Badi Elaichi
4-5 whole Cloves/Laung
1/2 Tbsp Red Chilly Powder
1 Tbsp Coriander powder, heaped
1/2 tsp Garam Masala Powder
1/2 cup fresh Green Peas
3 Tbsp (45 ml) Water
Fresh Cream 2 Tbsp
Finely Chopped Coriander leaves for Garnishing


1. Heat oil in a non-stick pan or kadahi. Add in the whole spices (cumin, green cardamom, cloves, black cardamom, cinnamon, black peppercorns). Let the spices splutter for a min.

2. Add in the chopped onions and stir fry on a medium flame till golden brown.

3. Add in chopped green chillies, coriander powder, red chilly powder, grated ginger, garam masala powder. Saute for 1 to 2 mins and add in the tomatoes. Saute till the tomatoes turn tender.

4.Now add in the green peas. Saute for 3 to 4 mins.

5. Add in the marinated minced meat. Cook on a medium flame for about 20 mins or till the meat is cooked properly. Add water 1 Tbsp at a time when cooking the meat.

6. Before turning off the stove add in fresh cream.

7. Remove in a serving bowl and garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves.

8. Serve hot with roti, naan or phulka.

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Step by Step Preparation of Balti or Kadahi Chicken Drumsticks

After the spicy South Indian-styled Red Snapper fish curry, I thought of preparing a Chicken curry since my hubby isn't much of a fish-lover unlike me. So last evening keeping that in my mind I took out few Chicken drumsticks which were there in the refrigerator's freezer and cooked a Peshawari Balti or Kadahi Chicken Drumsticks slightly different from the Peshawari Balti/Kadahi Gosht/Mutton preparation.

Since the mercury level is already soaring high these days, I opted for the original Balti or Kadahi cooking this time wherein the drumsticks are fried and cooked along with the spices and vegetables without marination. Also, I have added in the bell peppers to make it a colorful dish.

Following is the step by step preparation of the Balti or Kadahi Chicken Drumsticks.


6 pieces or 540 g Chicken Drumsticks
3 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
2 Bay/Tejpatta leaves
1 tsp whole Shahjeera or Cumin/Jeera
4 Green Cardamom/Chhoti Elaichi
2 Black Cardamom/Badi Elaichi
1 inch Cinnamon stick/Dalchini
5-6 Black Peppercorns
1 Mace/Jaipatri
4-5 whole Clove/Laung
3 medium size Onions finely chopped
1 tsp Turmeric Powder
2 tsp Kashmiri Chilly Powder
2 tsp Garam Masala Powder
1 heaped Tbsp Coriander/Dhania Powder
1 tsp Cumin/Jeera Powder
2 tsp Garlic Paste
2 tsp Ginger Paste
3 Tbsp hung and beaten Curd/Dahi
Salt to taste
2 medium size Tomatoes cut into cubes
1/2 Yellow Bell Pepper cut into cubes
1 small Capsicum/Green Bell Pepper cut into cubes
6-7 slit Green Chillies for the gravy
1 tsp Sugar
Fresh Coriander leaves, finely chopped for garnishing
3 slit Green Chillies for garnishing


1. Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed kadahi or wok and add in the whole spices (bay leaves, shahjeera or jeera, green cardamoms, black cardamoms, black peppercorns, mace, cloves and cinnamon sticks). Let them splutter for a minute.

2. Add the sliced onions and saute on a medium flame till the onions turn translucent.

3. Add garlic paste, ginger paste, turmeric powder, Kashmiri chilly powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, garam masala powder, salt and saute for few minutes.

4. Add in the chicken drumsticks one by one and stir fry on a low flame for about 5 mins.

5. Add in the beaten curd and mix slowly. Cover and cook on a low flame till the chicken is tender.

6. Now time to add in the tomatoes, bell peppers, slit green chillies and sugar. Mix slowly and cook on low flame uncovered for 5 mins or till the vegetables are cooked. (Avoid over-cooking to retain the color of the vegetables)

7. Time for some garnishing before serving. So remove the cooked Balti or Kadahi Chicken drumsticks one by one in a serving bowl and garnish with the chopped coriander leaves and green chillies, Serve hot with roti, naan or steamed rice.

Step by Step Recipe for Spicy South Indian-styled Red Snapper/Sankara Meen Curry

When it comes to sea-food cooking the Indian way, no other cooking can beat the Coastal States way of cooking sea-food. Recently I took a short break to Daman (divided into Moti Daman and Nani Daman) with my family (we opted for Moti Daman near Devka beach), a Union Territory of India, close to the state of Gujarat where I am currently located at. Whenever I visit a new place I always make it a point to try out some local delicacies of that place. However the trip wasn't as good as I expected with regards to sea-food for me, since Daman is a coastal place I have had the impression of getting the opportunity to try some nice sea-food preparation the local way. But I did not get much to try and taste.

So my hubby surprised me this Tuesday by getting some sea-food for me from the local fish-monger before leaving for work.

Out of the varieties of sea-food, I selected the Red Snapper fish for a first time recipe which was shared to me by my Dad years ago.

Let us check out the step by step recipe for a spicy South Indian styled Red Snapper fish or Sankara Meen Curry which is excellent during the hot Summer days too.

Preparation/Total Time: 15 mins/50 mins
Serving: 4-5

Ingredients for the Marinade

700 g Red Snapper fish/Sankara Meen cut into 3/4 size pieces
2 generous pinch of Turmeric/Haldi Powder
1/4 tsp Salt


Marinade the fish pieces with the Turmeric powder and salt. Keep aside.

Ingredients for the Gravy

2 large Onions chopped
2 large Tomatoes cut into pieces
8 Garlic Cloves
3 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
1 tsp whole Mustard/Rai
2 tsp whole Cumin/Jeera
6-8 Curry Leaves
2 medium-size Onions finely chopped
1 1/2 tsp Fenugreek/Methi seeds
1 1/2 tsp Black Sesame seed
2 tsp Red Chilly Powder
1 1/2 tsp Coriander Powder
1 tsp Turmeric Powder
1 1/2 tsp Cumin/Jeera Powder
Salt to taste
6-8 Green Chillies slit into halves
6-8 Garlic cloves halved
A Lemon size tamarind pulp ball soaked in water
1/4 cup or a handful of chopped Coriander leaves


1. Ground the onion, tomato and garlic into a smooth paste and keep aside.

2. Heat the oil in a pan and temper the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, black sesame seeds and curry leaves.

3. Add in the finely chopped onions, halved garlic, slit green chillies, once the above spices starts spluttering. Saute for 2-3 mins on a medium flame.

4. Add in the turmeric powder, salt, red chilly powder and saute on a medium flame until the raw and pungent smell of the onions and garlic is gone.

5. Now strain and extract tamarind paste out of the soaked tamarind pulp. Add this paste into the pan. Cook for another 5 mins.

6. Add water as per your gravy requirement (I have added in approx. a cup of water), cover and boil on high flame for 15 to 20 mins.

7. After that add in the marinated fish pieces one by one into the gravy and simmer on low flame for another 15 mins or little more.

8. Once done, turn off the stove and remove the fish curry in a serving bowl.

9. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with steamed rice.

Step by Step Recipe for Peshawari Balti or Kadahi Gosht/Mutton

Posting my recipes after a long gap. So thought of starting with this not so recent Mutton preparation. Whenever I try a recipe I always love to research a bit about the origin of the recipe. So henceforth my recipes will come with a little bit of information regarding the place of origin and the story behind its origin. Hope that will help those of you who are curious to learn a bit about the recipe story like me. 

As the name goes the origin of this recipe goes to a place called Landi Kotal, a rustic and traditional city of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in Pakistan. The recipe traveled to Punjab and the rest of the world slowly. The cooking is done in a heavy-bottomed Wok-like pot or locally called Balti as such the name goes by Balti Gosht. 

The meat is cooked with all the spices and vegetables without any marination, instead I tried cooking it by marinating with some of the condiments and then cooking with the rest of them and vegetables. A slightly sweet gravy preparation on the spicier side, it goes excellent when served with naan, roti or even steamed rice.

Without further delay, let us check out the step by step recipe for Peshawari Balti or Kadahi Gosht.

Ingredients for the Marinade

500 g Mutton
2 tsp Ginger paste
2 tsp Garlic paste
1/2 tsp Red Chilly Powder
3 Tbsp hung and beaten Curd/Yogurt/Dahi
1/2 tsp Turmeric/Haldi Powder
1 tsp Cumin/Jeera Powder
1 Tbsp Mustard Oil


Apply the ingredients and marinade the mutton pieces for about 5 to 6 hours.

Ingredients for the Gravy

3 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
2 Bay leaves/Tejpatta
1 tsp whole Shahjeera/Cumin/Jeera
4 Green Cardamom/Chhoti Elaichi
2 Black Cardamom/Badi Elaichi
1 inc Cinnamon stick/Dalchini
5 Black Peppercorns/Kali Mirch
1 Mace/Jaipatri/Javitri
4-5 whole Cloves/Lavang/Laung
2 medium-sized finely sliced Onions
2 tsp Kashmiri Chilly Powder
1 tsp Red Chilly Powder
2 tsp Garam Masala Powder
1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
1 Tbsp Coriander/Dhania Powder heaped
Salt to Taste
4 medium-sized Tomato blanched and pureed (I did not blanch the tomatoes as I wanted a tangy gravy)
2 tsp Sugar
1/3 cup chopped Fresh Coriander leaves for garnishing
3-4 slit Green Chillies for garnishing
1 Tbsp of Fresh Cream for garnishing(optional)


1. In a heavy-bottomed wok or kadahi heat the oil and let splutter the whole spices (Bay leaves, Cumin seeds, Green Cardamom, Black Cardamom, Cinnamon, Black Peppercorns, Clove) for 1 minute.

2. Now add in the sliced onions and fry them on a medium flame till golden brown. Keep sauteing to avoid over-frying the onions.

3. Now add in the powder spices (Kashmiri Chilly Powder, Red Chilly Powder, Garam Masala Powder, Turmeric Powder, Coriander Powder).

4. After adding in the spices add in the marinated mutton pieces one by one, saute and cook on a low flame till the meat gets tender. 

5. Add in the tomato puree, sugar and cook until the oil starts to separate. You can add water in small portions to avoid burning the gravy. Stir regularly.

6. Once cooked and the oil floats on the top of the gravy, remove it from the stove. Garnish with fresh cream, chopped coriander leaves and green chillies. Serve hot with roti, naan or steamed rice.

Tip: If you want you can substitute Red Chilly Powder with fresh Green Chillies.
Instead of Tomato Puree you can cut the tomatoes into large cubes and add in the preparation.

Friday, 10 April 2015

Step by step Recipe for Egg-less Chocolate Bar Pressure Cooker Cake

Prepared my second Pressure Cooker Chocolate cake (this time it was an Egg-less one) after 8 years recently but with a Chocolate bar since cocoa powder was out of stock. It is fun to bring out your creativity in cooking especially when you try and experiment a recipe with your own choice of ingredients which should definitely do justice to your invention.

So the step by step recipe of my Egg-less Chocolate Bar Pressure Cooker Cake is as follows.

Preparation/Total time: 1 Hour 15 mins
Serving: 3-4


11/2 cup All purpose Flour or Maida
11/2 tsp Baking Powder
165 g regular melted Chocolate Bar or alternately you can use 1/2 cup Cocoa Powder
1/2 cup melted unsalted Butter or Oil
1 cup Yogurt or Dahi (or alternately take 1 cup of milk and add 1 tbsp of white vinegar into it let it stand for few minutes and it will be ready for further use)
1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract or Good quality Vanilla Essence
A pinch of Salt (skip salt if using salted butter)


1. Pre-heat the pressure cooker on high flame for 3-4 mins with the lid on and the pressure regulator removed (if you are using an oven then pre-heat to 180 degree C). Now line the bottom of an 7" cake tin, grease and dust the tin.

2. Whisk and sieve the flour, baking powder, and salt twice and keep the dry mixture in a bowl. (you can include cocoa powder in this process if you want to skip using the chocolate bar)

3. Whisk in the butter or oil, vanilla extract and in another bowl. (whisk in the melted chocolate too in this step if you are using it or else add in 3/4 cup of powdered Sugar or more as per your taste)

4. Add and whisk in or blend the yogurt or dahi into the wet ingredient mixture properly.

5. Now gradually add  in the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and blend or mix well with a blender or a fork until the batter is free from any lump. (the batter should not be too thick, you can add in 1 tbsp of milk if it is very thick)

Note:In my Egg-less Vanilla Pressure Cooker Cake recipe I have added and mixed the wet ingredients into the dry ones. This time I have added and mixed the dry into the wet ingredients.

6. Pour the batter into the greased cake tin and place it directly inside the pressure cooker.

7. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes on a low flame with the lids on without the pressure regulator or insert a toothpick in the centre of the cake to check if it comes out clean, if not then keep it for some more time until done.

8. Now open the lid and remove the cake tin from the pressure cooker (oven) and let it cool for 5 mins.

9. Remove the cake upside down on a plate or wire rack and let it cool completely.

10. Slice and serve your Egg-less Chocolate Bar Cake.

Ideal to be served with evening tea. Hope this easy recipe will help you bake a simple egg-less chocolate bar cake in a pressure cooker in case you want to bake it in your cooker. Do try out this recipe and share with friends too. Thanks for going through the recipe. Until then happy baking.

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Step by Step Simple Tawa Fish Fry Recipe

A simple fish fry recipe for fish lovers. It can be had as an appetizer or a side course too. Check out the ingredients and step by step preparation. I have used King/Seer Fish for this version of tawa fish fry.

Preparation/Total Time: 25 mins
Servings: 4


4 large or medium-sized pieces of Fish (of your choice)
1/2 a piece of fresh Lemon juice
3 tbsp of Semolina or Sooji/Rava
1 tsp Turmeric Powder
1 tsp Coriander Powder
1/2 tsp Red Chilli Powder
1/2 tsp Garam Masala Powder
Salt to taste
1 tbsp Olive Oil for Indian Cooking


  1. Clean and wash the fish pieces, pat dry and keep them aside on a plate.
  2. Now marinate the fish pieces with lemon juice and salt and keep them aside for 10 mins.
  3. In a plate, mix all the dry ingredients together (semolina or sooji/rava, turmeric powder, coriander powder, red chilli powder, garam masala powder, salt).
  4. Heat a non-stick fry pan on the stove and pour the olive oil into it.
  5. One by one take the fish pieces and apply a coat of the dry ingredients mixture properly on both sides.
  6. Now put the fish pieces one by one into the frying pan and shallow fry them on a medium flame.
  7. Turn the pieces on both sides till they are golden brown.
  8. Remove and serve the tawa fish fry as an appetizer or a side course.
Come back and keep checking my blog for more recipes.Till then try and enjoy this recipe with your loved ones and share this easy recipe with friends.

Note: I use Olive oil meant for Indian cooking in all my cooking.