BM #104 Day 26 -

This classic Bengali Vegetable Chop or Bhejitable Chop, as it is called, marks the end of the month long Mega marathon.
It has been a wonderful culinary journey across many states in India and we got to explore some unique dishes and bookmarked many from our fellow marathoners.

After so many fried snacks in this series, I thought I should cut down on calories as I knew these vegetable chops would be a favorite at home. These vegetable chops turned out a tad spicy for my little one but the rest of us were happy with the spicy ones. 

Note to self - Cut down on the bhaja masala a little so the spice can be toned down.

Please keep an eye out for a recap of all the sweets and snacks which I posted in this series.


Recipe Inspiration here
Ingredients - 

Potato 2 nos (medium size)
Beetroot 2 nos (medium size)
Carrot 2 nos (medium size)
Ginger, grated 1 tsp
Green chilies finely chopped as needed
Salt, Sugar as needed
Coriander leaves finely chopped 2 Tbsp
Oil 3 Tbsp (divided use)
For the Coating - 
Maida/All Purpose Flour 1 Tbsp
Water as needed
Bread Crumbs 1 cup
Bhaja Masala - 
Cumin Seeds 1/2 tsp
Sonf / Fennel seeds 1/2 tsp
Coriander Seeds 1/2 tsp
Cloves 5-6
Cardamom 2-3
Cinnamon 1/2 inch piece
Peppercorns 10-12
Red Chilies 2-3
Bay Leaf  1 tiny



Method Of Preparation -


Prepare Bhaja Masala - 
In a heated pan dry roast all the ingredients listed under the Bhaja Masala and grind into a fine powder upon cooling. Set aside the masala powder.


To Make the Vegetable Chops - 
Boil potatoes and mash well. Grate Beetroot and Carrot and set aside.

In a heated pan, add a teaspoon of oil and saute the grated beetroot and carrot. When they are almost cooked, add in the mashed potatoes, ginger, green chilies and the bhaja masala. Sprinkle salt, sugar and mix well.

When the mixture comes together as single mass, remove from heat. Sprinkle chopped coriander leaves. Mix well and allow to cool.

Add some bread crumbs to the mixture and shape them into tiny oblongs or any other shape as preferred and set aside. I got 22 of them.

Prepare the slurry by mixing flour and water to make a thin runny batter.


Keep the slurry in a bowl and bread crumbs in another.

Dunk each oblong shaped vegetable chop in the slurry and then roll it in the bread crumbs and arrange in a lined tray.

Repeat this process for the remaining vegetable chops.

[Repeat the slurry and bread crumb coating process again if needed - I didn't do it]

Refrigerate the prepared vegetable chops for an hour before frying.

[I froze them overnight and then proceeded with air frying them].

To Deep Fry - 
Heat oil in a wok/kadai and gently slide the refrigerated vegetable chops and fry until they are golden brown. Remove onto paper towels and serve.

To Air Fry - 
Arrange the frozen vegetable chops in the air fryer basket and air fry them at 400 °F for about 18 minutes or until they are crisp.

Remove from the air fryer and serve with any sauce or chutney.






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Preparation Time 30 minutes + 1 hour Freezing Time + 20 minutes Air Frying time
Makes 22-24

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BM #104 Day 25 - 

We are almost at the end of this Mega marathon and today we have Dahi Gujiya from Uttar Pradesh. These are glorified Dahi Vada and so much better, if you ask me.

I found many variations in the filling used in these gujiyas, but I chose the one which I felt my family would be happy with.

Tomorrow will be the last one in this series and then we are back to our regular schedule of posting three days a week. Please look for a recap of this month's posts in a few days.


Ingredients - 

Urad Dal 1/2 cup
Salt as needed 
Oil for deep frying
To Soak the Gujiyas - 
Water 3-4 cups
Asafoetida 1/4 tsp
Black salt to taste
For the filling - 
Raisins 3/4 tablespoon
Cashews chopped 1 Tbsp
Almonds chopped 1 Tbsp
Ginger chopped 1 inch
To Serve - 
Yogurt whisked 1-2 cups (or as required)
Green chutney as required
Tamarind-date chutney as required
Cumin powder, Roasted
Red chilli powder as needed
Chaat Masala as needed
Coriander leaves chopped as needed
Sev as needed


Method Of Preparation -

Wash the dal and soak it for 3-4 hours. Drain the excess water from the dal and spread the dal on a clean kitchen towel. Leave it on the towel for a few minutes until all the moisture is absorbed.

Grind into a thick batter without adding water in it. Sprinkle a few drops if needed.

Transfer the batter to a bowl and whisk well. The batter to make gujiya is ready.

Mix the cashews, raisins and ginger together.


Heat oil in a wok/kadai.

In a bowl add 4 cups of water , kala namak and asafotida and mix well. Keep it ready as the fried Gujiyas need to be soaked in this water for a few minutes.

Pinch a small portion of the batter with wet hands and pat into a 3 inch circle on the palm of your hand. Put 1/2 teaspoon of the filling in the center and fold the circle to form a semicircle with the filling firmly sealed inside. Refer the picture. Continue making gujiya with the batter.

When the oil is hot enough, gently slide the prepared gujiya from the previous step and fry until they are golden brown. I fried them in batches of 8.


Transfer the fried gujiyas into the water. Allow them to stay soaked for a few minutes. When the soaked gujiyas rise to the top, remove them from the water. Gently squeeze out the excess water and arrange them on a platter or serving container.

Spread some Green chutney, Tamarind-Date chutney. Drizzle some beaten yogurt. Garnish with roasted cumin seeds powder, red chilli powder, chat masala, chopped coriander leaves and sev.




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Preparation Time 1 hour + 2-3 hrs soaking time
Makes 16

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BM #104 Day 24 - 

For Ooty Varky, Our fellow BM member and baking expert, Gayathri, has experimented and come out with a tried and tested recipe for this Ooty Bakery specialty. Thanks to her, we have a wonderful, crispy, crumbly and rich cookie as a snack for tea.

There is a deep fried version of these as well which I am told is not as authentic as this one and that is a street vendor version. More on this in another post.

These varky were very popular at home with the kids and the Dad too. I had planned to take these to a party at my friend's place, but they were half gone when I stepped out of the kitchen. I knew there weren't enough for the party, so I let the kids finish the remaining ones (there weren't many left) and assured them I wouldn't be taking them to the party :). 

Recipe Source Gayathri
Ingredients - 
For The Dough -
Maida / All Purpose Flour 1 1/4 cup
Sugar 2 Tbsp
Oil 3 Tbsp
Salt 1/4 tsp
Water as needed
For The Layering -
Oil 2-3 Tbsp
Maida as needed


Method Of Preparation -


In a mixing bowl add maida, salt, sugar and oil to form a crumbly mixture.

Add water and knead it into a soft pliable dough.

Cover and set aside in a warm place for two hours. I left it out for 4 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 °F. Line a baking tray.

Generously oil a clean work surface and knead the dough.

Roll or pat it into a thin rectangle which should be transparent enough to see through.

Sprinkle 2-3 tablespoons of oil on the transparent rectangle and add about 1-2 tablespoons of maida.

Mix well to make a spreadable paste. Add more oil or flour if needed.

Spread the paste evenly on the entire rectangle.

Fold 1/3rd of the rectangle inside and fold the opposite side as well to form a letter fold.

Mix more oil and flour to make a paste and cover the entire surface.

Again fold twice to make a letter fold and let it rest for 10 minutes.

Roll it into a thin rectangle again.



Slice the dough into 1 inch strips (I got about 8 of them).

From each strip, pull some dough off and roughly make it into a round shape, pinching the top.

Arrange them on a baking tray. 

Bake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes or until they are brown.


Cool on wire rack and enjoy with a cup of tea, or as is.








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Preparation Time 25 minutes + 2-4 hours resting time + 40-45 minutes baking time
Makes 35

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Posted by Harini R on Saturday, September 28, 2019


BM #104 Day 23 - 

Rajasthan is known for some of the best food and these Vadas are a testament to that fact. These are cousins of the South Indian Masala Vada. They are very similar in taste and texture. But the main difference is in the double frying of these Vadas and their shape too.

My family loves the Medhu Vada as opposed to the Masala Vada and so I was skeptical about these being accepted at home. I was making plans on distributing to my amazing cheer leading neighbors but fortunately or unfortunately my family finished the entire batch in one sitting :)



Recipe Inspiration from the web
Ingredients - 

Chana Dal 1 cup
Moong Dal handful
Salt, Green chilies, Red Chili Powder, Ginger as needed
Coriander leaves chopped as needed
Crushed Coriander seeds 1 tsp
Oil for Deep frying



Method Of Preparation -


Wash and soak the chana dal and moong dal for about 2-3 hours.

Drain and grind the dals along with the green chilies and ginger into a coarse batter.

Add in the salt, red chili powder, crushed coriander seeds, asafotida and mix well.

Add in the chopped cilantro (coriander leaves) and mix the batter.

Heat oil in a wok/kadai for deep frying.

Pinch lime sized portions of the batter and pat into thick discs. gently slide them into the hot oil and fry them until they get a golden hue.

Remove from the oil and continue with the rest of the batter.

After the vadas are slightly cool to touch, slice them into fingers and fry them again until they are crisp and golden brown. Remove onto paper towels and fry the remaining vada slices.

Serve them warm with green chutney.







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Preparation Time 45 minutes
Serves 5-6

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BM #104 Day 22 - 

Kothambir Vadi is a healthy snack native to the state of Maharashtra. I have always eaten it at my friend's place and  it kind of felt that I had made it at home too. I never even realized that I hadn't posted it in my space. 

So I asked my friend to share her family recipe and I followed her recipe to the T. She also gave me the idea that I could air fry them and that is what I did. They came out super crispy and we loved it.


Recipe Source Shalaka
Ingredients - 

Besan / Gram Flour / Senaga Pindi 1 1/2 cups
Coriander leaves, finely chopped 1 cup
Salt, Asafotida, Red Chili Powder, Turmeric as needed
Green Chilies-Ginger paste 2 tsp 
Oil 1 Tbsp



Method Of Preparation -


In a mixing bowl, add besan, chopped coriander leaves, salt, asafotida, red chili powder, turmeric and green chili-ginger paste. Mix well. Sprinkle water as needed to make a stiff dough.

Pinch small portions of the dough and make oblong shapes.



Grease a steaming plate and arrange these oblong shaped dough pieces and steam them for about 12-15 minutes.

Upon cooling, slice the oblong shapes into 1/2 inch discs.

These can be shallow fried, deep fried or air fried to make them crispy.

I have opted to air fry them. Place the small discs in the air fryer basket set to 400 °F. Air them for about 20 minutes tossing them every 5-6 minutes. 

[Each Air Fryer is different, so adjust the timing depending on when the discs become brown and crispy].

Serve them warm with a chutney of your choice.  





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Preparation Time 45 minutes
Makes 30-35 pieces

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BM #104 Day 21 - 

For today, here is a classic snack from Madhya Pradesh. Ratlami Sev is a traditional spicy snack and each family has a specific spice blend which goes in it.

Here I have used the spices which I felt my family might like. I made this sev twice. The first time when I made, the sev turned really dark brown as the masala was that color owing to cinnamon. So the second time I made, I omitted cinnamon to get a light colored spice blend.

The Sev came out very crispy and spicy the second time and we enjoyed with tea.

I found the concept of blending water and oil to get a frothy mix very new. Another new observation was that the oil frothed up as soon as the dough was pressed into it. I wonder what the cause for that might be. I skipped baking soda when I made it for the second time thinking that might be the cause. But there was froth in the oil even the second time.

Recipe Inspiration here
Ingredients -

Besan / Gram Flour / Senagapindi 1 cup
Cooking Oil 3 Tbsp
Water 4-5 Tbsp
Lemon Juice 1 tsp
Baking soda a pinch (I didn't add)
Salt 1/2 tsp
Oil to deep fry
Spice Mix - 
Cloves 7-8
Peppercorns 10
Fennel Seeds /Sonf 1/2 tsp
Ajwain/Vaamu 1 tsp
Kala Namak / Black Salt 1/2 tsp
Asafotida 1/4 tsp
Ginger Powder 1/4 tsp
Red Chili Powder 1/4 tsp
Turmeric 1/4 tsp



Method Of Preparation -


In a heated pan dry roast, cloves, peppercorns, fennel seeds (sonf) and carom seeds.

Allow them to cool and grind to make a fine powder. Sieve the powder and keep aside.

Blend water and oil in a mixer till it become white and frothy.

Now add lemon juice, kala namak, asafotida, ginger powder, red chili powder, salt, 2 tsp of masala powder and blend again for a minute.

Add this liquid mixture to besan, mix and make a medium soft dough.

Grease chakli press with oil. Place the dough in the chakli press/muruku press with a medium sized perforated plate.

Heat oil in a wok/kadai and press over the hot oil to make sev on medium heat.

When the sev comes to the surface of oil, flip the sev and cook until both the sides are golden in colour.


Drain the sev on a paper napkin to absorb the excess oil. Upon cooling, crush the sev and store in an airtight container.


 

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Preparation Time 45 minutes
Makes 2 cups (when crushed)

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Posted by Harini R on Wednesday, September 25, 2019


BM #104 Day 20 - 

Today's recipe is the classic Gujarati snack called Handvo. It is traditionally prepared in an elaborate manner. Many instant versions have cropped up as per need and each of them tastes good and different.

I have made Handvo in a muffin pan and loved the crusty bites dipped in green chutney. It can be baked in a cake pan or even on stove top or even in an Instant Pot. Each cooking method will have varying cooking times and textures as well.

In spite of greasing the muffin tin generously, un-moulding them was slightly difficult and most of them had bits still stuck to the pan. But that was the fun part, I got to 'tuck in' all the crusty bits which was a delight in itself :)

Also I skipped the seasoning on the top. I mixed it into the batter itself.


Recipe Source Inspiration - many posts on the web
Ingredients - 

Rice 1/2 cup
Chana Dal handful
Urad Dal handful
Moong Dal handful
Salt 1 1/4 tsp (Or to taste)
Yogurt 1/2 cup
Carrot, grated 2 Tbsp
Bottle Gourd, grated 2-3 Tbsp
Methi leaves , chopped 2 Tbsp
Coriander leaves, finely chopped 2-3 Tbsp
Green chili, crushed 1/2 tsp
Ginger, grated 1 tsp
Sugar (about 1 tsp), Red Chili Powder, Turmeric (about 1/4 tsp), and lemon juice (about 1-2 tsp) as needed
ENO fruit salt 1 tsp or Baking Soda 1/2 tsp
Sesame Seeds 1 Tbsp

Seasoning - (Oil 3 Tbsp, Mustard seeds 1 tsp, Cumin seeds 1/2 tsp, Asafotida 1/4 tsp)


Method Of Preparation -


Wash and soak rice and the dals for about 5-6 hours. Grind into a semi coarse batter adding as little water as possible.

Add salt and set aside the batter in a warm place for fermentation.

After the batter ferments, mix in the grated vegetables, salt, sugar, red chili powder, lime juice, yogurt, crushed green chilis, grated ginger, and chopped coriander leaves.


Preheat the oven at 350°F and generously grease a muffin tin.

Mix the batter well and sprinkle ENO fruit salt or baking soda.

Gently mix and divide the batter into the muffin tins. Sprinkle sesame seeds on each of the muffins.

Place the muffin pan in the middle rack and bake for 35 minutes. 

[I would suggest keeping an eye on them from 20 minutes and then testing with a toothpick for doneness. There are many factors which might change the time taken to bake, like the consistency of the batter, oven calibration etc.]


Then broil for about 8-10 minutes to get some crunch on the top.

Remove from the oven and allow it to cool for 10-15 minutes before unmoulding.

Serve them with a spicy green chutney. 





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Preparation Time 40 minutes + 5 hrs soaking time + 8 hours fermentation time
Makes 14 muffins

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