Kofta Biryani

kofta biryani

Eid ul Adha or the more common Bakri Eid is here and we are celebrating with some Kofta Biryani.

Kofta Biryani is a biryani that uses minced meat balls or koftas instead of meat pieces. Mince can be of any meat of your choice; however, mutton is the most commonly used meat for this biryani.

I made this special biryani for the main Eid that marks the end of Ramzaan, Eid ul Fitr and had documented the recipe then to be shared specially around Bakri Eid as that is when most people stock up on mutton and are looking for new ways to convert it into a lip smacking dish.

As exotic as it sounds, the biryani has many steps to it but is not difficult to prepare at all. Try is to treat your friends and family this Eid.

Eid Mubarak!

chicken kofta biryani

Kofta Biryani Recipe
Makes a pot enough for 4 to 6 people


For Koftas
250gms fine minced meat (chicken / mutton)
1/4th cup chopped onion
½ teaspoon chopped green chillies
2 tablespoon chopped coriander
1 bread slice (soaked in water for 5minutes)
1 tablespoon besan (gram flour)
1 teaspoon ginger – garlic paste
½ teaspoon turmeric powder (haldi)
½ teaspoon red cilli powder
½ teaspoon coriander seeds powder (dhania powder)
½ cup refined wheat flour (maida) for dusting the koftas
Oil for frying koftas

For the Kofta gravy
1 cup sliced onions
2 tablespoons oil
2 nos. Bayleaf (tejpatta)
2 nos. Green cardamom (elaichi)
1 inch stick of Cinnamon (dalchini)
3 nos. Peppercorns (kali mirch)
2 nos. cloves (laung)
1 teaspoon Cumin seeds (jeera)
2 green chillies slit
1 cup chopped tomatoes
3 teaspoon Biryani masala
½ cup curd (yoghurt / dahi), whisked
1.5 cups water

500 gms Basmati rice or any long grain rice meant for Pulaos & Biryanis
½ cup chopped coriander leaves
½ cup chopped mint leaves
1/4th teaspoon saffron (kesar) mixed with 2 teaspoon milk



Step 1 – To make the koftas, mix all the ingredients except the refined wheat flour and oil. Keep the mince mixture in the fridge overnight or at least for 8 hours.



Step 2 – Divide the mixture in 10 portions and roll into smooth koftas.


IMG_20170623_105106Step 3 – Coat the koftas with refined wheat flour.


Step 4 – Heat enough oil in a kadhai and fry the koftas on medium heat till they are golden in colour. It’s not necessary to cook the koftas completely, they will simmer in the gravy eventually.


Step 5 – To make the kofta gravy, fry the sliced onions in hot oil (one used to fry koftas) till slightly brown. Remove immediately on an absorbent paper and keep aside to cool. Crush once cooled.



Step 6 – In a thick bottomed pan, heat the 2 tablespoons oil and crackle bayleaf, green cardamom (elaichi), cinnamon (dalchini), peppercorns (kali mirch), cloves (laung), cumin seeds (jeera) and green chillies.


Step 7 – Add in the tomatoes, salt, biryani masala and crushed fried onions. Cook well till mixture leaves oil from the sides.


IMG_20170624_121124Step 8 – Add in the whisked curd and cook gravy for 5 minutes.


IMG_20170624_131828Step 9 – Mix in water and gently place the koftas in the pan. Simmer the gravy for 15 minutes. Remove from flame and keep aside.



Step 10 – To prepare the rice, wash well and soak it for 30minutes. Then boil in 3 times the water with salt till the grains are almost cooked (around 80%). Do not overcook the rice. Drain and keep aside.


Step 11 – To layer the biryani, take a deep,wide and thick bottomed pan. Put in 1 tablespoon of oil and spread ½ the quantity of rice over it.


Step 12 – Spread the entire kofta gravy over the rice. Top with chopped coriander and mint leaves.

IMG_20170624_134428Step 13 – Spread other half of rice over the gravy and sprinkle the soaked saffron evenly.


Step 14 – Pour ½ cup water from sides and place the pan over low heat. Keep on flame till you get the Biryani aroma, it should be approximately 20 to 25 minutes.

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Methi Murg Tangdi Kebab

It’s the last weekend before school re-opens (Yay!) and I decided to treat Nabeel with his favourite food – Chicken. It’s Ramzaan too so I narrowed down on an Indian recipe this time which would double up as our iftar treat 🙂
On an average, Non-Indian recipes (read baking recipes) out number Indian recipes on my blog, why? Because, I usually am bored cooking up the everyday (& boring) dal, chawal subzi, that’s why the blog recipes are an exclusive affair to keep the interest alive. Therefore, today’s recipe is a sumptuous Indian Grill – Methi Murg Tangdi Kebab.

methi murg tangdi kebab

Before moving onto the recipe here is a bit about why this title. Honestly, this is the very first time I struggled to name my dish. I like my recipe titles to be very clear and straightforward, so that even before you get to the recipe you get a fair idea of what it’s going to be just by reading the title. Methi Murg was incorrect because that name is commonly used for a gravy based dish…so misleading. Since it’s a grill I wanted to use the word kebab, but technically kebabs are made of minced meat and this one is not. I had to fit in the word “tangdi” (chicken drumsticks / leg) any how along with kebab and this is the best I could come up with. I personally find the title a bit too long and if you too, then please bear with me.

Sorry, let’s get back to the recipe.

chicken kebab

I made the most of the sun these last few days by drying leafy vegetables in order to preserve them for a longer duration. I dried Methi / Fenugreek, Mint / Phudina and Lemon Grass, it’s so simple to do so; the flavours also intensify giving the dish a very good aroma and taste. Plus, it is very easy to store as the bunch of fresh leaves reduces to 1/4th (or even less) of its original size.
I used part of the dried methi to make khakhras, a snack the family loves. And then, some of it to make this grill.
I have shared a short note on how to dry methi leaves at home. I urge you to do so. But, if you are not in the mood to do so use the readily available “kasuri methi” for the dish.

How to dry fresh methi / fenugreek leaves at home?
1. Separate out the leaves from the stalks and spread them out on a big steel or glass plate.
2. Keep the leaves to dry out in the sun till they wilt. Direct drying in sunlight will take about 6 hrs.
3. Alternatively, dry roast the leaves in the oven at a low temperature of 50C for an hour or so.

Yes, finally coming to the recipe.

indian grilled chicken

Methi Murg Tangdi Kebab is quite simple using few ingredients and requiring even less amount of your time to prepare it. Long hours of marination is the trick here. The succulent chicken legs have a dominating flavour of methi complimented by creamy texture lent by cream and yoghurt. You could even try replacing methi with dried phudina. I grilled few of the drumsticks on the gas stove and tried grilling a few in the oven. The oven ones cook better but lack the look. Choose whichever cooking method suit you. However, a real Tandoor is anyday the best choice 😉

I have compiled the step by step pictures into a video to create an interesting way of browsing through the recipe. Let me know how you like it and if you prefer to see recipes in this format, henceforth.


Methi Murg – Tangdi Kebab Recipe


1 kg drumsticks approx 10 to 12nos
1 cup grated cheese
1 cup curd (yoghurt), whisked
½ cup cream
4 tablespoon dried methi
2 tablespoon lemon juice
Pepper powder, as per taste
Salt, as per taste
Butter for cooking

Step 1 – Marinate chicken legs with lemon juice and salt. Keep aside for 30 minutes.
Step 2 – Meanwhile, mix cheese, yoghurt (curd), cream, dried methi, pepper powder and salt in a bowl.
Step 3 – Coat the chicken well with the prepared marinade.
Step 4 – Leave the chicken overnight in the fridge or for at least 6 hours for the flavours to seep in.
Step 5 – To cook the chicken legs, take a pan and sizzle butter in it. Place chicken and cook.
Step 6 – Cook the chicken legs on both sides for 10 minutes or till the meat tenderizes.

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Popeye Pie

Popeye Pie
Most of my generation moms grew up watching Popeye – The Sailor and so were introduced to spinach very early and would not mind consuming it since Popeye did so and he could manage getting over any trouble. Sadly, our kids don’t know Popeye as he is taken over by the likes of Chotta Bheem and Doraemon, such a pity!
Anyways, leaving aside the entertainment quality woes, what is more worrisome is how to feed Spinach to kids? Spinach – the higly recommended vegetable for kids and which, ironically, kids hate the most 🙂

Well, Nabeel is no different and the question hounded me for quite some time now. I know most moms resort to the convenient Palak Paneer recipe but it hardly works. Nabeel loves paneer and so he would look forward to the Palak Paneer being made but when it was time to eat, putting his fine fishing skills to use the paneer was picked out of the green gravy, wiped onto the roti and bitten into. Duh! The palak was right there in his plate staring at me.

I wasn’t giving up so easily and tried a couple of other Spinach recipes which failed too. Finally, what came to my rescue was this super easy Spinach Pie Recipe which I have named Popeye Pie. The intention in naming it so it to familiarize Nabeel with the forgotten Popeye – his mom’s first hero (wink wink) and the famous Spinach stories.

Spinach Pie

So, the said pie is any mom’s dream food for her child. It is loaded with vegetables apart from spinach, can be made without much preparation, has good carb’s to keep the energy flowing and can also be enjoyed cold thus making it an ideal lunch box recipe.
Be creative, add and subtract vegetables as per your kid’s preference. Vegetarians, the chicken can be omitted without affecting the taste so you can try this recipe too. Replace the chicken with paneer, soy chunks or any other chunky ingredient you prefer (some more pasta maybe). To make the dish more cheesy, have a grated cheese layer between the spinach and potato layer. Again, if you do not prefer giving bread to the child then use rotis instead; however, the top layer won’t be as crunchy with the replacement.

Enough of reading let’s get to some cooking, shall we?

Popeye Pie Recipe


For the Spinach sauce
1 cup wilted Spinach
3 tablespoon plain cheese spread
1 tablespoon milk
1 medium green chilli

For the crust
4 bread slices
1 tablespoon peeled garlic cloves
2 teaspoon chilli flakes
Salt to taste

Other Ingredients
1/4th cup small pasta, uncooked
150 grams boneless chicken breast
1/4th cup corn
1/4th cup diced capsicum
1 medium boiled and peeled potato
Butter for cooking
Mixed herbs as per taste
Salt as per taste

Step 1 – Blend all the ingredients for the Spinach sauce together, cover and keep aside.

Spinach Sauce
Step 2 – Grind all the ingredients for the crust to a coarse mixture as shown in the picture. Cover and keep aside.

Bread Layer
Step 3 – Boil enough water to cook the pasta. Once cooked, drain, refresh and keep aside. Use only small shaped pasta to match with the vegetable size. I used the one pictured below. You can use big pasta like penne or fusilli and cut it once it’s cooked.

Small Pasta
Step 4 – Dice the chicken breast and cook it in a non-stick pan with 1 tablespoon butter, salt and mixed herbs. Remove the chicken and keep aside.
Step 5 – In the same pan sauté the remaining vegetables, except potato.
Step 6 – In a clean bowl mix the corn, capsicum, chicken, pasta and the spinach sauce together. Season the mixture with salt and herbs, if required.

Layering the Popeye Pie

Step 7 – Take the baking dish, and layer the spinach and vegetable mixture.
Step 8 – Thickly slice the potato and layer. If adding extra cheese, then do so between the spinach and potato layer.
Step 9 – Top with the bread mixture and put small dollops of butter on the bread layer.

Step 10 – Bake the Popeye Pie in a hot oven for 10 minutes or till the crust forms.
Serve hot or cold.

Spinach & Pasta Pie

Hope this works for you too. Do you have a special Spinach recipe that your kids adore? Then please share it in comments.

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Chicken & Oats Squares

Chicken n Oats Squares

Today, I have one more chicken creation invented especially for Nabeel when he was holidaying and demanded all things new. It’s a fairly simple recipe using homemade chicken mince, yes homemade, because I am yet to find a decent store selling the perfect fine chicken mince that most of my recipes require. If you, too, are as finicky as me when it comes to chicken mince then just churn boneless chicken breast in your grinder till the desired level of mince is achieved. Yes, that simple!
Healthy Chicken & Oats Square Recipe is quite versatile as it can be eaten or used up in no. of ways, so I usually make a huge batch and freeze some of it to create new stuff every time. Read up the tips after the recipe to know more.

Healthy Chicken & Oats Squares Recipe

Fine Chicken mince – 500gms
Quick Cooking Oats – ½ cup
Peas – 1/3rd cup
Tomato – 1no
Ginger Paste – 1 tablespoon
Garlic Paste – 1 tablespoon
Green Chilli paste – ½ tablespoon
Egg – 1 no
Coriander leaves, chopped – ¼ th cup
Curry leaves / Kadi patta – 2 to 3 twigs, ensure only the leaves are used not the twigs holding them
Cumin seeds – 2 teaspoons
Red chilli powder – 1 teaspoon
Turmeric powder / haldi – 1 teaspoon
Cooking oil – 3 tablespoons
Salt as per taste

Chicken Mince Cake

Step 1 – Cut tomato into half, lengthwise. Grate it in a bowl, only the seeds and pulp is required, discard its skin.
Step 2 – In a bowl add chicken mince, oats, peas, grated tomato, ginger paste, garlic paste, green chilli paste, egg, coriander leaves. Mix everything well.
Step 3 – In a heavy bottomed wide non-stick pan, heat the oil and crackle cumin in it. Add the curry leaves, red chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt. Mix and cook till you get the lovely aroma of curry leaves.
Step 4 – Add the above tempering to the chicken mixture and mix everything well. Keep the chicken aside or refrigerate it for at least 1 hour before cooking.
Step 5 – In the same pan (in which the tempering was done) evenly spread the chicken mixture. Cover the pan and cook on a low flame for 15 minutes.
Step 6 – The chicken mixture has enough liquids to prevent it from burning however it is wise to check the pan after the first 10minutes. Well marinated mixture will not taken more than 15minutes (or even less) to cook. The squares need to be moist and juicy so don’t overcook or else they will be dry.
Step 7 – The squares can also be baked in a non-stick baking dish @200C for 10minutes. The baking dish has to be covered with a lid or aluminium foil, to retain the juices.

chicken cakes

1. The squares can be eaten on their own when freshly cooked accompanied with bread or roti and a salad.
2. Thinly sliced squares make a great sandwich filling.
3. If you don’t want to chew on the curry leaves while eating it is best to use whole twigs rather than loose leaves. Pull out the twigs from the mixture before cooking it, their flavour would have been absorbed by the mixture already.
4. You can also crumble the squares and use as a stuffing for samosas, parathas, spring rolls, etc.
5. Instead of peas, chopped mixed vegetables can also be added. Trying adding some nuts like walnuts or almonds too.
6. The squares can be transformed into a saucy kheema by sautéing onion and tomato paste along with Indian Keema spices. Mix in the crumbled squares and top with chopped coriander leaves.
7. This dish makes up for an excellent Suhoor Recipe during Ramadan.
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Top 15 Out of the Box Iftar Recipes

Ramadan is almost here and I am sure the concern of what new to make every evening for Iftar is eating you up! Fret not; I have put up a list of recipes which you can try out and win praises. All recipes are perfect for kids and adults alike thus the entire family can be pleased in one go:-)

For convenience sake, I have divided the list into Vegetarian Iftar recipes and Non-vegetarian Iftar recipes. Here, goes the list

Vegetarian Iftar Recipes

Chilli Cheese Toast

Chilli Cheese Toast

1) Chilli Cheese Toast – A classic snack for cheese lovers.

2) Baked Potato Wedges – A quick fix for days when you are totally drained out to whip up something gourmet.

3) Cream n Curd Open Sandwich – Something I have relished during Iftar all my life and am more than pleased to share the recipe with you.

4) Masala Rotis – For men (and women too) who cannot make it home on time for Iftar; these masala rotis can be packed and carried as an Iftar snack. Made with whole wheat and fortified with vegetables the rotis provide enough energy to carry on till you can tuck in some dinner. A smart choice over biscuits and fast foods.

Indian Rawa Pancakes

Indian Semolina Pancakes

5) Indian Semolina Pancakes – The day when you decide to take a break from all things guilty (read oily)

6) Penne n Chunky Cheese – This dish can easily qualify for dinner. If you are in no mood to whip up an Iftar snack plus dinner this is what you should make.

Chicken Iftar Recipes

Malai Tikka _ Chicken

Chicken Malai Tikka

7) Chicken Malai Tikka –This dish will take you back on the guilt track, after all feasting is an important part of Ramadan. Stop drooling and start preparing 🙂

8) Mince n Cheese Quesadillas – The 2 adjectives; wholesome and yummy perfectly describe this recipe. Try it today.

9) Chicken Nuggets – This recipe is perfect for anyone looking for prepare ahead foods. The nuggets freeze well and can be cooked at the last minute.

Sweet Recipes for Iftar

alphonso mango dessert

Easy Mango Dessert

10) Melon & Pineapple Drink – Fresh fruits are highly recommended during Iftar, here’s a recipe combining 2 fruits to create a refreshing drink.

11) Fig & Apricot Milkshake – For days when you want to sip something energetic rather than eat.

12) Banana & Chocolate Sandwiches – Bananas are a great source of energy making them the ideal fruit to consume for iftar. Here’s a quick fix for iftar, using them.

13) Quick Mango Dessert – Mangoes are going to vanish soon, make the most of them.

Chocolate Cupcake

Chocolate Cupcakes

14) Chocolate Cupcakes – Bored of traditional Iftar sweets? Try baking these chocolicious cupcakes one of the days.

15) Sugar Cookies or Oat Cookies– If you are someone who likes to munch on off the shelf biscuits for Iftar, why not try some homemade cookies?

Besides the above recipes, keep looking out for many more Iftar Recipes that I shall be posting over the month. To receive the recipes right in your inbox please register your email id on the blog.

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Till then, Love Being a Mommy!


Classic Chilli Cheese Toast

As one of my earlier post mentioned Nabeel has taken to sandwiches and I am now exploring different ways and recipes to keep his interest in them alive. The latest one being Chilli Cheese Toast. It has cheese which Nabeel loves to indulge in, chilli which he enjoys consuming once in a while (yes, he licks up spicy curries and eats the hottest of chutneys and snacks) and bread which is also one of his favourite food. Besides, for me it is a blink and make recipe for which I need no preparation at all. Just a quick urge for something cheesy or a surprising request from my husband is all that is needed to quickly whip up this dish.

Classic Chilli Cheese Toast

I learnt making Chilli Cheese Toast during my training at a 5 star hotel and since then it is dished out on a fortnightly basis in my kitchen. Nabeel takes his toast to school as a Tiffin snack and also enjoys munching on it while watching his favourite show – Mickey Mouse & the Clubhouse 🙂 If your child is not yet ready for chilli then omit it or reduce the quantity. The recipe without chilli’s is equally divine.

Chilli Cheese Toast

I have often come across people ordering Chilli Cheese Toast at their favourite snack outlet or the famous roadside sandwich makers of Mumbai, who say they love the snack but have never attempted making one at home as it seems complicated. Well, if you are one of them then this recipe is just for you. Not only is it simple but it is sourced from highly sought after kitchens.

Happy Toasting!

Chilli Cheese Toast Recipe

Ingredients to make 2

Chopped Onion – ¼ cup
De-seeded and Chopped Tomatoes – ¼ cup
Finely chopped green Chilli – 1 tsp
Softened Butter – 2 tablespoons
Grated Cheese – ¼ cup
Salt as per taste
2 Bread Slices
2 Cheese Slices

Step 1 – Mix all the ingredients, except the bread and cheese slices in a bowl.

Chilli Cheese Toast Mixture

Chilli Cheese Toast Mixture

Step 2 – Apply the prepared mixture on the bread slices.
Step 3 – Cut 1 cm wide long strips on the cheese slices and arrange them in criss-cross pattern over the layered bread slices.
Step 4 – Place the bread slices in a pre-heated oven for about 5 minutes or till the cheese melt and the bread toasts enough, as per your preference.
Step 5 – Serve immediately.

Indian Chilli Cheese Toast

Tips: 1) Go easy on the salt as the recipe uses copious amounts of butter and cheese which already have a lot of salt in them.
2) You may choose to use 1 whole cheese slice per bread slice but the only difficulty would be in eating as hot sliced cheese sticks to the teeth making it uncomfortable to enjoy the dish. Strips of cheese, as suggested, work out much better.

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Cream & Curd Open Sandwich

Hello readers, sorry for being away for so long was feeling a bit under the weather so couldn’t take out time to cook, shoot and post for BAM. Nonetheless, today, I have a very nutritious sandwich with a unique ingredient, malai or fresh milk cream. I have gorged on these sandwiches as an after fast snack ( or iftar snack) during the fasting month of Ramadan. The malai, whose benefits are known to all, adds so much richness and goodness to the sandwich that would help me gain instant energy after an entire day or staying hungry.

Healthy Cream  Curd Open Sandwiches
I have been waiting to make these super healthy sandwiches for Nabeel who recently started eating sandwiches on his own, which means the snack can now be given as Tiffin treat with me not being around to help him eat.
Besides the malai/milk cream, other ingredients like vegetables, curd, semolina, etc lend their individual benefits to the sandwich making it a real healthy treat. Experiment with different breads to give variety to the child, I once also made the sandwiches using pizza bread. Here goes the recipe.

Cream & Curd Open Sandwich
Cream n Curd Open Sandwiches
For 4 slices of bread (approx.)

2 tablespoon fresh milk cream or malai
2 tablespoon crud or yoghurt
2 tablespoon semolina or rawa
¼ cup mixed vegetables, finely chopped (tomatoes, capsicum, corn, carrots, spring onions, etc)
1 tablespoon coriander leaves, finely chopped
1 small green chilli, finely chopped (optional)
Salt as per taste
Oil or Butter for pan frying

Step 1 – Mix all of the above in a bowl and keep aside for atleast 30 minutes. The batter should be thick. If yours isn’t allow to rest another 10minutes or add 1 tablespoon of semolina or rawa extra. Depending upon the vegetables you add the batter consistency varies.

Step 2 – Apply the batter on bread slices and pan fry the sandwiches, batter side down (see image below). Grease the pan generously with oil or butter to avoid the batter sticking to the pan.

Pan fried Open Sandwich

Step 3 – Allow the sandwiches to pan fry on low flame for good 5 minutes. The batter takes time to cook and come off the pan. Once cooked, flip to the other side and let the bread toast well.

Step 4 – Cut the sandwiches in to 2 or 4 and serve immediately or wrap in foil for the Tiffin.


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