HOLI SPECIAL – SHAHI TUKDA WITH CARROT AND MALAI RABDI

It’s time to bid goodbye to carrots with this scrumptious creamy dessert that is apt for the upcoming festival. Here’s a quick pictorial recipe of the easy dessert which will complete your Holi celebrations. 

Carrot Rabdi

SHAHI TUKDA WITH CARROT AND MALAI RABDI
Makes 4 portions

4 cups Milk (I used cow’s milk)
6 tablespoon sugar
1.5 cups grated carrots
1 tablespoon ghee
½ cup fresh milk cream (malai)
½ teaspoon cardamom powder
1 teaspoon ghee + ¼ cup slivered almonds
1 8’ inch pizza bread (cut into 8 triangles) (can use 1.5 to 2 pizza breads i.e total of 12 to 16 pieces to make 4 portions of the dessert)
Pistachio powder

Carrot Rabdi - step 1Step 1 – Heat milk with sugar and simmer till it reduces to 3/4th.

Carrot Rabdi - step 2Step 2 – Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp ghee in a pan and sauté carrots till tender.

Step 3 – Cool the carrots and whiz them 2 times for 5 seconds each. We don’t need a puree.

Carrot Rabdi - step 4Step 4 – Add the carrot, malai and cardamom powder to the milk and simmer for another 10 minutes till thick Rabdi consistency is achieved.

Carrot Rabdi - step 5Step 5 – Heat 1 tsp ghee and sauté almonds in it.

Carrot Rabdi - step 6Step 6 – Fry the pizza bread triangles in hot oil till golden brown on the outside but still soft inside.

Shahi Tukda with carrot & malai rabdiStep 7 – To serve, place few bread triangles in a wide deep dish and pour the Rabdi over it. You can choose to keep it hot or cold. Top with slivered almonds and pistachio powder.

***HAPPY HOLI***

You might want to try this other Holi Special Recipe

Connect with us on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram & Facebook. Follow the blog to get recipes right in your inbox!

Till then, Love Being a Mommy!

Chickpea & Fruit Chaat

Something that will help keep your body and mind cool this summer is this extremely delicious and juicy Chickpea and Fruit Chaat. A tangy amalgamation of flavours and wholesomeness, the chaat is packed with protein and goodness of fruits which can be eaten as a snack, salad or even a light meal.

chickpea & fruit chaat

I have grown up eating the tangy, spicy Chickpea and Fruit Chaat, mostly during summers in a chilled icy avatar. While I relished the juicy fruits and the lip smacking taste of the masalas, Chickpeas were usually ignored and left behind in the bowl. It’s a pity I realized the goodness of this wonder food only now and am determined to use it at least once a week in my kitchen.Along with the Chickpea Tikkis and Chickpea dip, Hummus, the Chickpea and Fruit Chaat is something I whip up frequently, these days for Nabeel who is busy holidaying. Nabeel likes munching on roasted chickpeas and is just getting used to savouring the boiled ones. He helps me in preparing the chaat; washing and peeling fruits is his duty.

indian fruit chaat

The soaring temperatures make one lose appetite, giving kids one more excuse to reject food. The chaat is a good meal alternative for kids and ideal when they are in no mood to eat a typical roti-dal meal. Chickpea and fruit nutrients are good enough to provide them the nourishment of a meal. To make it more summery, one can even add beaten curds to the chaat. The tamarind chutney is an excellent coolant and perfect for summers. Chill the chutney in refrigerator, if you do not wish to serve frozen chaat to your child. Keeping boiled chickpeas handy makes the chaat a quick fix for anytime hunger.

Chickpea & Fruit Chaat Recipe

Ingredients
2 cups, freshly cut fruits, use a range of colors in this mix (strawberry, guava, grapes, pomegranate pearls, and orange)
1 cup boiled chickpeas
½ cup Sweet n Sour Tamarind / Imli chutney (recipe below)
1 teaspoon Chaat masala
Salt as per taste

fruit chaat ingredients

Method
Step 1 – Place tamarind chutney in freezer for 10 minutes.
Step 2 – In a clean bowl, put fruits, boiled chickpeas, chaat masala and salt. Mix well.
Step 3 – Lightly mix in the tamarind chutney.
Step 4 – Serve immediately or place in freezer to chill further.

Sweet n Sour Tamarind / Imli chutney Recipe

Ingredients
½ cup Tamarind / Imli, seedless
1 cup dates / khajoor
Grated Jaggery / Gur as required to adjust sweetness
1 teaspoon roasted cumin / jeera powder
Red chilli powder as required
Black salt as required

Method
Step 1 – In a heavy bottomed pan, take 2 cups of water. Add in the tamarind and dates and boil till the tamarind is soft and pulpy.
Step 2 – Strain the mixture through a soup strainer to remove date seeds and any other tamarind particles.
Step 3 – Check for sweetness and add the jaggery accordingly. Check the chutney consistency, if it seems thin then boil for few minutes.
Step 4 – Cool the chutney, add roasted cumin powder, red chilli powder and black salt.
Step 5 – Transfer to an airtight container. Refrigerate or Freeze for further use.

Till then, Love Being a Mommy!

Connect with us on Twitter, Pinterest & Facebook. Follow the blog to get recipes right in your inbox!

Disclaimer: This recipe was originally submitted on Babychakra and published  here

 

 

 

It’s time for some Thandai!

Thandai basically means “cool” and is essentially a milk based drink that is flavoured with a rich masala made of dry fruits and spices called Thandai. This special blend, typically consumed for Holi, has amazing properties to energize as well as cool the body, something very apt considering the upcoming Holi festival and the weather.

Thandai Pannacotta

 

This year, I have observed, the Holi buzz is missing mainly due to the acute drought situation that has gripped the state. Most people have pledged to observe a “dry Holi” while many have decided not to play it at all. Well, it’s a wise thing to do! Considering the long weekend you might as well take a short vacation and spare some H2O.

Last year, Nabeel played Holi for the first time and I can say he had a blast. This year he is definitely looking forward to relive the same but whether it will involve water or not is still unclear. Anyways, to keep his spirits high I introduced him to Thandai.

The ingredients required to make Thandai Masala are easily found in any Indian kitchen and the process involved is quite simple.

Nabeel loves milk and moreover doesn’t mind consuming it in different flavours and styles. Thandai masala is a very humble yet powerful blend of ingredients that is recommended to be consumed daily, not necessarily only for Holi. So, I decided this was the perfect time to make some Homemade Thandai Powder for him.
The ingredients required to make Thandai masala are easily found in any Indian kitchen and the process involved is quite simple. I have worked around to arrive at my secret blend of spices and herbs which doesn’t include some common Thandai ingredients like cashew nuts, poppy seeds, melon seeds, etc but tastes just fine.
As expected, Nabeel loved his glass of chilled Thandai and has been relishing it for a few days now. I urge you to make Thandai masala at home, this year and experience the difference.

lr_bc

With a jar of Homemade Thandai Powder at my disposal I decided to experiment and treat hubby and myself with some Thandai Panna Cotta.

Panna Cotta is an Italian dessert which is not as fancy as it sounds but infact the simplest of recipes I have ever come across. With some cream, flavours and a setting agent you can prepare the Thandai Panna Cotta under 10 minutes, which sets in less than an hour.

Before you set out to play Holi whip this dessert and leave it to chill so that on your return you are welcomed by traditional flavours wrapped in International feel in the form of Thandai Panna Cotta.

indian holi sweet_lr

 

Easy Thandai Panna Cotta Recipe
Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

For Homemade Thandai powder

1/4th cup shelled pistachios
1/4th cup almonds
3 teaspoons black peppercorns / sabut kalimirch
2.5 teaspoons cardamom / elaichi powder
3 teaspoons badi saunf / fennel seeds / variyali
A pinch of salt
1/4th teaspoon turmeric / haldi powder
½ teaspoon saffron / kesar strands

For the Thandai Pana cotta

200ml or 1 cup fresh cream, unsweetened (I used Amul tetra pack cream)
6 teaspoons sugar
2 tablespoons Thandai powder
1 teaspoon gelatine granules or agar – agar / china grass powder

Method

Step 1 – To make Thandai powder; grind everything together to get a fine powder. If you want to make a paste, then soak the ingredients together in ½ cup of water for 20minutes and then grind to a smooth paste.

Thandai powder_lr

Step 2 – To make Thandai Pana cotta, soak the gelatine / agar – agar in 3 teaspoons of water and let it swell for 5 minutes till you work with the cream.

Step 3 – Pour fresh cream in a clean, thick bottomed vessel and heat on simmer while stirring continuously. It’s better if you use a whisk to stir as it will ensure no lumps are formed.

Step 4 – Once the cream is hot, add in sugar and continue to stir and simmer.

Step 5 – Mix the Thandai powder with enough water to make a smooth thick paste. Add this paste to the simmering cream and mix well.
If you have prepared Thandai paste then mix it with soaked gelatine / agar – agar before adding to the cream.

Step 6 – Add the soaked gelatine / agar – agar to the cream and whisk vigorously to avoid any lump formation.

Step 7 – Simmer the Thandai Pana cotta mixture for another 5 minutes. Switch off the flame and let it cool.

Step 8 – While the Pana cotta mixture cools, grease your moulds with little oil followed by rinsing them with water. Use oil which doesn’t have a very strong flavour or aroma or else the Pana cotta will smell of that. This dessert can be unmolded like a jelly or eaten directly from a fancy mould, depending on how you wish to serve it choose the mould. I used muffin tray (for unmolding) and serving cups since I wanted to experiment with both the styles.

Step 9 – Pour the Panna cotta mixture in greased moulds, cover with cling film and refrigerate. The Panna cotta should set in an hour.

Step 10 – To demould the Thandai Panna cotta, run a knife through the sides of the mould and loosen the dessert, upturn the mould on a plate and shake giving a few jerks. A well set Panna cotta will demould immediately.

Step 11 – Garnish Thandai Panna cotta with saffron strands and slivered pistachios. Serve cold.

holi Thandai panna cotta_lr

 

Happy Holi & Play Responsibly

Till then, Love Being a Mommy!

Connect with us on Twitter, Pinterest & Facebook. Follow the blog to get recipes right in your inbox!

 Disclaimer: This article was originally written for Babychakra and published here.

Green Pea Parathas

This year’s extended winter is a boon; not only do we get to enjoy the lovely weather but also the endless supply of fresh fruits and vegetables it brings along. Carrot and Peas are the top 2 ingredients of the season that always come home with me after every trip to the market. I pick up nearly a kilo each, every week. The family munches on carrots as a snack, salad and for me, a bowl of carrot easily works as a dinner replacement, select few days of the week. Besides, carrot soup and gajar halwa are the other hot favourites.

Peas are low in fat high in Vitamin C & Vitamin K and a very good source of dietary fiber. 

As for Green Peas, I make stuffed parathas using them. Green Pea Paratha, along with fresh curds and pickle, is the current favourite breakfast of the family. Green Pea Paratha or Matar Paratha, in my opinion, is a healthier and easier alternative to the famous Matar Pooris that are relished for breakfast across India. Plus, if feel, one can taste the green peas better as a stuffing in parathas than pooris.

indian pea bread

It is a known fact that Nabeel loves parathas of any kind and, happily, Green Pea stuffing has also found its way on his approved stuffing list. Cheese tops it by the way. Although, he rarely eats them as breakfast the parathas are always welcome for his snack box. Thrice a week, to be precise.

Peas are high in starch which means they do not need any external binding ingredients; this stuffing uses the binding power of peas and lets their actual flavour come out.

The sweet and mild flavour of peas is such that the vegetable can be easily transformed and adapt to any dish. I have come across many Green Pea Paratha recipes that use a list of ingredients which overpower the humble pea, defeating the entire idea of a green pea recipe; this recipe, however, uses few basic ingredients and is easy to make comparatively. The outer covering is made using whole wheat or refined flour while the stuffing has 100% green peas and no other filler ingredients. Peas are high in starch which means they do not need any external binding ingredients; this stuffing uses the binding power of peas and lets their actual flavour come out. Try this recipe of Green Peas Paratha to know what peas taste like and how they can be delicious on their own.

green pea paratha

Green Peas Paratha Recipe
Makes 10 to 12 parathas

Ingredients
For paratha dough
2 cups whole wheat or refined wheat flour
2 tablespoons oil
2 pinches of salt

For the paratha filling
2 cups – freshly shelled Green Peas
2-3 nos – Green chillies
1 teaspoon chopped ginger
½ teaspoon jeera /cumin powder
2 tablespoons oil or butter
Salt to taste

Ghee / Clarified Butter – as required to cook the parathas
Fresh curds / yougurt & tangy mango pickle to serve with parathas

Method
Step 1 – First prepare stiff dough using the given ingredients and water. Cover the dough and keep it aside or refrigerate while the filling is being made.
Step 2 – For the filling, put green peas, green chillies, ginger, cumin powder and salt in a mixer jar and coarsely churn it.
Step 3 – In a wide (wider the better) non-stick pan, heat the oil. Once hot add in the green pea mixture and sauté for 5 minutes.
Step 4 – Spread out the mixture as thinly as possible on the pan, lower the flame and let it cook. This will take about 10 to 15 minutes, cook till the raw smell of the peas vanishes and you get sweet smelling cooked pea aroma. The mixture is also ready when you are able to mould it easily.
Step 5 – Take off flame, check for taste and let it cool for 15 minutes.
Step 6 – Take the prepared dough and portion it into small balls.
Step 7 – Heat a griddle on medium flame, roll each portion into a thick disc and place about a tablespoon of green pea mixture in the center, bring the dough from the sides together and seal the filling.
Step 8 – Roll carefully into medium thick or ½ centimeter thick parathas.
Step 9 – Place paratha on the hot griddle and roast on both sides using oil / ghee.
Step 10 – Repeat the same with remaining dough balls, one at a time.
Step 11 – Serve parathas hot off the tawa with fresh curds and tangy mango pickle.

matar paratha

Till then, Love Being a Mommy!

Connect with us on Twitter, Pinterest & Facebook. Follow the blog to get recipes right in your inbox!

 Disclaimer: This article was originally written for Babychakra and published here

Gajar Halwa / Indian Carrot Sweet

Gajar ka Halwa or the famed Indian Carrot Sweet is best relished during Indian winter’s when crimson, sweet carrots flood the markets.

This year, the family gorged on Gajar ka Halwa (and, is still doing so) like there is no tomorrow! In fact Nabeel, my boy, who is not so fond of sweets also couldn’t resist himself to endless portions of the beloved Indian dessert. I think he has mood swings when it comes to sweets, for eg. on a recent trip to Gujarat he just ate jalebis, which is usually a no-no for him when in Mumbai. Guess, he has the instinct to identify and savour the seasonal and local delicacies. Ain’t I happy? 🙂

gajar ka halwa

Crisp carrots with high water content are ideal for preparing the halwa. It is essentially milk based and one can use any form of milk like powder, thickened, condensed, etc to make this mouth-watering sweet.

There are many ways in which you can make the halwa, I, myself have made it in 5 different styles. The reason we indulged so much, this season, was because I made a huge batch of it, instead of the little portions I usually make for one time consumption, all thanks to my latest, 6th, halwa making style.

It is a pretty good 3 ingredient Gajar Halwa recipe which is easy to make however, I will be honest, not very quick. Albeit, very delicious due to the time it takes to cook and bring out the flavours. All the recipe calls for is fresh carrots, milk and sugar; most of the time is spent in reducing the milk which lends a rich and creamy taste to the dish. I prepared sizeable quantity of the carrot dessert and froze small portions, to satiate our never ending greed of it.

carrot & milk sweet

The versatility of this sweet is such that it can be served at any temperature and each way it tastes different. I have known cooking enthusiasts serve hot Gajar Halwa on a sizzler plate with Vanilla Ice-cream or even as a stuffing for Gulab Jamuns, another Indian sweet. We like it piping hot dressed with copious amounts of dry fruits. Let me know how you serve the halwa; do leave me a comment on this page.

Gajar Ka Halwa Recipe

Ingredients 

1 kilo crisp, sweet carrots, thickly grated
1 litre milk, whole or cow, avoid milk with low fat content or else be ready to compromise on the taste
3/4th to 1 cup sugar, start with lesser amount of sugar as the carrots also lend their sweetness and the joy of this dish is in the sweetness of the carrots which the commercial sugar shouldn’t overpower.
Handful of dry fruits, slivered/chopped, as per your choice

indian carrot dessert

The versatility of this sweet is such that it can be served at any temperature and each way it tastes different.

Method
Step 1 – Start by boiling the milk, in a thick bottomed vessel. Choose a vessel which is 3 times bigger than the quantity of the milk because while reducing the milk splatters a lot.
Step 2 – Simultaneously, put the carrots in another thick bottomed pan with 1 cup of water. Cover and steam the carrots over a medium flame for 10 minutes.
Step 3 – Once the milk has boiled reduce the flame to simmer and let the milk bubble. Keep a long handle spoon in the vessel to prevent milk from flowing over. Every 2 minutes give it a stir.
Step 4 – Once the carrots have steamed add sugar in it and mix well. Cook the mixture, uncovered, a slow flame till the sugar dissolves completely and the carrots are soft. Also ensure the mixture is moist but not watery.
Step 5 – Once the simmering milk is almost 3/4th its original quantity, add the carrot mixture to it. Stir and cook the halwa on low flame, stirring every minute. This step needs utmost attention; ensure the mixture doesn’t burn from the bottom or the sides. You will need to spend at least 20 minutes on this step.
Step 6 – Slowly, the mixture will start coming together. The colours will change and you will see more red than white. At this stage you can add some ghee or clarified butter in case you wish to. Taste the dish for sweetness and add sugar if needed. Cook further till you get a mixture that looks less like a batter and more like dough.
Step 7 – The halwa is ready and you may choose to garnish it with nuts of your choice. Serve hot, cold, or warm as desired.

carrot halwa

Till then, Love Being a Mommy!

Connect with us on Twitter, Pinterest & Facebook. Follow the blog to get recipes right in your inbox!

Indian Republic Day Dessert Ideas

It’s India’s 67th Republic Day this year and what better way to celebrate than by creating some themed desserts? As they say, kuch meetha ho jaaye for most Indian occasions. Here are few ideas that you can use to whip up Indian tricolour desserts.

Indian Tricolor Dessert

Tangy Trail

Whip 1 cup cream with powdered sugar and divide in 3 parts. For orange layer, add orange flavoured tang to one part till desired colour and flavour is achieved. For green layer, add kiwi crush to one part of whipped cream till desired colour and flavour is achieved. Assemble the three layers in a glass, as per the Indian tricolour. Chill the dessert for 20 minutes before serving and garnish with sprinkle of Tang powder and few drops of Kiwi crush.

Tirangi Kulfi

Get 3 flavours of Kulfi; Saffron(Kesar), Pista and Malai. Soften them in separate bowls and mix in chopped roasted Almonds. Assemble the three layers in a glass, as per the Indian tricolour. Freeze for 20minutes and serve. Alternatively, you could also fill up kulfi moulds with the three layers and serve as a Tirangi Kulfi on stick.

Indian Tricolour Sundae

Soften 1 cup Vanilla ice-cream and divide into 3 parts. To one part of ice-cream add orange essence, orange food colour and candied orange pieces. To one part of ice-cream add apple essence, green food colour and chopped pieces of grapes. To the last part, add chopped pieces of Litchi or Sitaphal or Fresh Coconut Meat (Malai). Freeze the ice-cream till hard. Assemble the sundae with scoops of prepared ice-cream as per the Indian Tricolour. Pour chocolate sauce and throw in some nuts and chocolate chips for garnish. Serve immediately with a spoon.

It’s a good idea to involve kids in preparing the desserts while you narrate some patriotic stories to them. What a great way to spend the Republic Day holiday!

Desh ki Kheer

Dig out your best recipe of Kheer, rice or sabudana both will do, make a huge batch, divide it into 3 parts and colour one part with orange, other with green and let the last part remain as it is. Section the 3 as per the Indian flag in a shallow serving bowl and chill. Place few chopped blueberries in the centre of the white section to symbolize the chakra. Serve chilled.

Trio of Fruit Trifle

A simple fruit truffle can also be made in the colours of the Indian flag. Take a tall serving glass, put some sponge cake bits and pour a tablespoon of orange juice over them. Top the cake with chopped green fruits like kiwi, grapes, green apple, etc. For the white layer, pipe out sweetened whipped cream which is flavoured with Vanilla. The top orange coloured layer can be of chopped fruits like musk melon, orange, papaya, peach, gooseberries, mango or even dried apricots. Pour orange juice once again and chill for 30 minutes before serving. Garnish with a dollop of whipped cream and serve chilled.

 Jelly Delight

For the bottommost green layer, prepare readymade lime jelly. Add few drops of green food colour to it and pour in serving glass or transparent serving bowls. Refrigerate till it sets. Meanwhile, prepare Vanilla flavoured readymade custard (roughly about a cup), cool it and mix in cream to get an off white colour custard. Pour this over the set green jelly and refrigerate once again till the custard layer is set. For the orange layer use readymade orange flavoured jelly and proceed in similar manner as the green layer. Chill the serving glass or bowl for a good 30 minutes before serving. Garnish the dessert with orange pieces and a dollop of whipped cream.

The above suggestions are as simple as they can get, the ingredients are handy and available at most grocery stores. The best part is these desserts are ready in no time and most need a basic judgement of ingredients to assemble them. It’s a good idea to involve kids in preparing the desserts while you narrate some patriotic stories to them. What a great way to spend the Republic Day holiday!

Happy Republic Day!

Till then, Love Being a Mommy!

Connect with us on Twitter, Pinterest & Facebook. Follow the blog to get recipes right in your inbox!

 Disclaimer: This article was originally written for Babychakra and published here

Kalamro – Eid e Milad

Eid e Milad or Milad un Nabi is Prophet Mohammed’s birthday. It is an occasion of mixed emotions, as on this day Prophet Mohammed was not only born but he also passed away after a few years. The Milad falls on 12th of Rabi ul Awwal, an Islamic month and mostly its a joyous affair than a mourning period. Throughout the month Bohras celebrate by making a special sweet called Kalamro.

eid e milad recipe

Kalamro is a rice and curd based dish which is served chilled topped with a variety of nuts and garnished typically with pomegranate seeds and rose petals.  In my opinion, it is the most humble of all the celebration desserts which is so easy to make and that lends ample of nutrition at the same time. Nabeel likes eating curd and so Kalamro is made often at home. This is one sweet which you shouldn’t shy away from making and serving your kids. It is lip-smacking and given its goodness is highly recommended for children.

Kalamro Recipe

Makes 2 servings

Ingredients

50grams Basmati Tukda

150ml Cow/Toned Milk

50grams Powdered Sugar

100grams Curd

1 tablespoon Pomegranate

1 tablespoon Raisinis / Kishmish

1 tablespoon Charoli

Red Rose Petals – for garnish

Kalamro

Method

Step 1 – Wash and soak the rice grains for 30 minutes.

Step 2 – Cook the rice on slow flame in enough water to cover it.

Step 3 – Once the water starts to dry out pour the milk in 2 turns, stirring continuously.

Step 4 – Once cooked, add sugar and mash the rice while it is still hot.

Step 5 – Completely cool the rice and then mix in curd. Whip well and refrigerate the kalamro for at least 20 minutes before serving.

Step 6 – Top with Charoli, Raisins, Pomegranate seeds and Rose petals before serving.

Connect with us on Twitter, Pinterest & Facebook. Follow the blog to get recipes right in your inbox!

Till then, Love Being a Mommy!