Tag Archives: spices

Masala Vadas – Yellow Split Pea Lentil Fritters

Vadas are very popular lentil fritters that are made all over India.  Crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, vadas are delicious appetizers and snack time treats.  There are as many vada recipes out there as the various types of lentils.  The basic recipe for vada involves soaking lentils in water for a few hours to soften, and then they are ground into a thick coarse batter to which vegetables and spices are added.  The thick batter is then deep-fried.  Vadas are usually served with a side of chutney like coconut chutney.  For those of you living in the South think of these as hush puppies except these are made with lentils. Continue reading Masala Vadas – Yellow Split Pea Lentil Fritters

Green Beans Sauté

I am so excited to share this green beans recipe with you all. A couple of months ago our power had gone out for almost three days as a safety precaution shutoff from PG&E, and it happened during our Indian festival of Diwali.  This is when my friend Roli dropped off the most amazing array of home-cooked dishes for a special Diwali lunch. I tell you folks, for someone like myself who cooks often, having a home-cooked meal made by someone else and that too made by an outstanding cook like my friend Roli – the food just tasted like ambrosia. Continue reading Green Beans Sauté

Bharazi. Kenyan Black Eyed Peas in Coconut Milk and Spices

Happy New Year 2020!
Wishing you all a healthy and happy year ahead!

Looking for a totally different black-eyed pea recipe to make for good luck in the New Year?  A recipe from East Africa? Try this black-eyed pea stew called bharazi created by Indians living in Kenya.  Bharazi is an Indianized Kenyan dish made with black-eyed peas, coconut milk, and spices.  Continue reading Bharazi. Kenyan Black Eyed Peas in Coconut Milk and Spices

Moroccan Tajine

I’ve always loved exotic hand-painted pottery from all parts of the world. There is something organic and artistic about pottery serving pieces that gets me excited every time I see them. They make all my food look beautiful and appetizing. My fetish for handmade pottery is how I came across this beautiful Moroccan pottery called tajine.  Years ago when North African cuisine was first featured in the Williams-Sonoma California catalog I bought a Moroccan tajine pot from them. It is no surprise that I bought it because it is a gorgeous piece of hand painted pottery! What makes these North African pottery so unique and beautiful are their intricate hand-painted designs in vibrant colors and ethnic motifs. Tajines look like art pieces, each one different from the other, and each one a potter’s masterpiece. Very often among North African families tajines are collected as family heirlooms and passed down generation after generation. Continue reading Moroccan Tajine

Eggplant Gotsu

Gotsu is a saucy, tangy, spicy cooked salsa made in most South Indian homes to accompany any type of rice dish. I shared a recipe earlier for an easy tomato onion gotsu that my Mom used to make to accompany a lentil and rice pilaf called pongal.  Here I would like to share my Aunty Shashi’s recipe for an eggplant gotsu made with eggplant, juicy tomatoes, onions, bell peppers and lots of spices. Continue reading Eggplant Gotsu

Cinnamon Spice and Everything Nice. Hazelnut Apple Almond Crumble.

Last weekend I was invited to my friend Nishma’s home for a pre-Diwali dinner and for the party I was requested to bring my cardamom apple almond crumble. It was the perfect time to make this dessert as I had a bunch of garden apples from my friend Devi waiting to be consumed.  This time though I made a slight change to my recipe, when I went to the store to pick up all the ingredients I noticed in the baking isle Bob’s Red Mill Hazelnut Meal. I grabbed a bag and made the apple crumble with a mix of hazelnut meal, almond flour and oats.  It turned out awesome! Interesting observation that one of my kids made with the hazelnut addition is that this nut flour binds much better than almond meal, almost the same consistency as flour.  This is one decadent healthyish dessert packed with good for you oats, nuts, fruit and spices with the sweetness of brown sugar. Give it a try! Continue reading Cinnamon Spice and Everything Nice. Hazelnut Apple Almond Crumble.

Shishito Pepper Stir Fry Coconut Rice

Here I was left with a large quantity of Shishito peppers from my farmer’s marker trip wondering what to do with so many, I’m talking over 50 peppers!  Don’t get me wrong, I love Shishito peppers but even for our family there is a limit to how many Shishito peppers we can have. I was looking for a way to use up all these peppers when I got the idea to use them in a stir-fry rice. I cut up the peppers into bite size pieces, sautéed them until they were tender and charred, added fresh coconut, a couple of Indian spices, salt and sugar and I ended up with this delicious Shishito pepper stir fry coconut rice. The rice tasted so good that my family was having it by the bowl fulls. It tasted even better the next day as all the flavors had a chance to marinate and get absorbed into the rice. If you love Shishito peppers or Padron peppers like we do, this is an awesome recipe to use up a good amount of these peppers. Give it a try! Continue reading Shishito Pepper Stir Fry Coconut Rice

Indian Spiced Rice, Paneer and Zucchini Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed peppers are such an easy dish to make that I wonder why I don’t make it more often. For me hearing the word “stuffed” has connotations of a “hard recipe” but this recipe is easy as it can get.  Have leftover rice, quinoa or couscous?  Stuff them inside bell peppers seasoned with Indian spices and extra veggies like zucchini and you get a super healthy and delicious vegetarian meal in no time at all.  Keep it vegan and stuff it with veggies and grains or add in some cheese like paneer to give the peppers heft. Generously spiced with ginger, garlic and onions and a fragrant amount of Indian spices; these stuffed peppers are a deliciously satisfying meal for lunch or dinner. Continue reading Indian Spiced Rice, Paneer and Zucchini Stuffed Peppers

Bell Pepper Potato Curry

Late summer brings with it a harvest of peppers in all shapes and sizes. Sweet peppers, spicy peppers, mild peppers, green, yellow, red, and orange peppers – you name it, it’s available at the farmer’s market right now. All these peppers are the inspiration for this curry that uses peppers in an Indian spiced potato curry. Continue reading Bell Pepper Potato Curry