Archive for Indian

Easy Tikka Masala Sauce

tikka masala sauce

So what’s chicken tikka without tikka masala sauce, right?  I’m kind of a sauce nut, I admit.  If it’s spicy, a little creamy, with a smooth texture I’m in heaven.  This is the easiest way that I’ve found to make a good tikka masala sauce.

The ingredients:

Remember the marinade we made for the chicken tikka?  We set aside half of it to use in this sauce.  Here’s what you do.

First, dice half a small red onion and fry in olive oil in a small pot, like so:

IMG_1876

When the onions are beginning to turn translucent add half of the reserved marinade.  Stir and cook over a medium heat for about five minutes.

Transfer onions and sauce to a large glass.  Add one small tomato or four larger cherry tomatoes.  Blend with an immersion blender until smooth, then transfer back to the pot.  Cook for another three or four minutes.

Reduce the heat and add the rest of the reserved marinade and a little milk.  Stir and serve with the chicken tikka.

The ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 small red onion, diced
  • 1 cup reserved tikka masala marinade
  • 4 cherry tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup milk or half-n-half

I hope you like the recipe.  If you try it out, be sure and let me know.  You can connect with me at @oneworldplate on twitter.

Easy Tikka Masala Sauce
oneworldplate: 
Recipe type: Sauce recipe
Cuisine: Indian
 

Tikka masala sauce is actually very easy to make. Much easier than you’d expect. And it goes well with chicken tikka as well.
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ small red onion, diced
  • 1 cup reserved tikka masala marinade
  • 4 cherry tomatoes
  • ¼ cup milk or half-n-half

Instructions
  1. Dice red onion.
  2. Cook in olive oil until translucent.
  3. Add half the reserved marinade.
  4. Cook for several minutes.
  5. Transfer to a large glass and add tomato.
  6. Blend with an immersion blender, then add back to the pot.
  7. Cook for another few minutes.
  8. Reduce heat and add the rest of the marinade and milk.
  9. Serve with chicken tikka.

 

Grilled Red Pepper Chicken Tikka

chicken tikka

I’ve been dissatisfied with my past attempts at making chicken tikka, I confess.  It’s never quite tasted ‘peppery’ enough to me.  Then it hit me one day.  Red bell pepper.  IN the yogurt marinade.  Brilliant.

But what about cooking in a tandoor?  A typical household oven doesn’t really get to quite the temperatures that a tandoor can.  Grilling, however, will produce a very similar result.

The technique:

First, assemble the ingredients for your marinade.  We will end up reserving half the marinade to use in our tikka masala sauce, which is cooked separate from the chicken.  There’s no cross contamination, so don’t worry about that.

Mix together yogurt (I used Oikos, because it’s awesome), lemon juice, a clove of garlic, grated frozen ginger, red bell pepper, olive oil, fresh cracked pepper, garam masala, paprika and a little water.  Blend with an immersion blender until it’s a smooth sauce.

mis en place

It should be close to two cups.  Chop two chicken breasts into bite sized pieces, then marinate in one cup of marinade, for at least 30 minutes.

chicken marinate

Add the chicken to bamboo skewers (which have been soaking in water for a while).  Dust with more paprika.

chicken skewers

Grill for at least 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the temperature of your fire.

grilled chicken

The ingredients:

  • 1 cup Oikos yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon grated frozen ginger
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 cup of red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 2 chicken breasts, cut into pieces

Tomorrow I’ll show you how to make an amazing curry sauce to go along with this chicken tikka recipe.

Grilled Red Pepper Chicken Tikka
oneworldplate: 
Recipe type: grilled chicken
Cuisine: Indian
 

A marinade with red bell peppers and grilling makes an amazing chicken tikka recipe.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup Oikos yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon grated frozen ginger
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 cup of red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground pepper
  • 2 chicken breasts, cut into pieces

Instructions
  1. Assemble ingredients (other than chicken) and blend until a smooth sauce.
  2. Cut chicken into bite sized pieces.
  3. Marinate chicken for at least 30 minutes.
  4. Add chicken to bamboo or metal skewers.
  5. Grill chicken until done.

 

Indian Food Recipes Roundup

Indian food recipes

This roundup of Indian food recipes that I’ve featured on oneworldplate will make it easier for you to make an Indian feast.  With a few spices, some humble ingredients and few more exotic ones, and the proper technique, I believe almost anyone could make a wonderful Indian meal.

The Indian Food Recipes:

Rice Pilau- A fragrant and spicy rice dish.

Garam Masala- An essential spice mix when you’re cooking Indian food.

Chana dal- A spiced chickpea dish.

Coconut Rice- A variation on rice, easy and delicious.

Mung bean lentil dal- A vegetarian side dish that’s yummy and nutritious.

Carrot ginger halva-  Carrots’ natural sweetness make a wonderful dessert.

Butter chicken- An easy chicken curry with sauce recipe.

Oven fried masala chicken- A cool way to make spicy chicken lowfat.

Lemon lime tamarind chutney-  A delicious tart and sweet condiment.

Palak paneer-  A delicious side dish featuring cheese and spinach.

Roti- Bread that’s easy to make and delicious.

Carrot mushroom curry- A vegetarian dish that features carrots and mushrooms.

If you try any of these, and enjoy them, please let me know.  They’re all much easier to cook than you’d believe.

 

 

Easy Indian Roti Recipe

Indian Roti

I’d like to share my Indian roti recipe with you.  A good Indian curry isn’t really complete unless you have a good Indian bread to eat it with.  It’s incredibly easy to make, as long as you aren’t afraid to get your fingers a little messy, and have a nonstick pan.

The technique:

Remember the chickpea flour I told you about when I posted the gluten free cupcake recipe? Well, this recipe uses an equal portion of the chickpea flour and all purpose flour.  If you don’t have chickpea flour, just use regular flour.  I like it because it has an almost nutty flavor, but it’s not absolutely necessary.

This roti is an unleavened flat bread, so you won’t need any yeast or baking powder.

First, add chickpea flour and all purpose flour to a bowl.

IMG_1502

Next, add salt, pepper, and water.  Mix well.  Use your fingers.  You’ll end up with something like this:

IMG_1504

Next, add oil to the dough, and knead it until it’s got a smooth texture.  Then cut the dough into 8 equal portions.  Flatten each portion and cook in a nonstick pan on a medium high heat.  Each one will look something like this:

IMG_1506

Cook each side for about 3 to 5 minutes, or until browned.

The ingredients:

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil

If you try out this Indian roti recipe, and like it, be sure and let me know.  You can connect with me on twitter at @oneworldplate.

Easy Indian Roti Recipe
oneworldplate: 
Recipe type: bread
Cuisine: Indian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 8
 

This Indian roti recipe is easy to make, and will complement any Indian curry recipe.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil

Instructions
  1. Add chickpea flour and all purpose flour to a bowl.
  2. Add salt and pepper and mix.
  3. Add water and mix into a dough
  4. Add oil and knead well.
  5. Cut into 8 equal portions.
  6. Flatten each portion well.
  7. Cook on a nonstick pan on a medium high heat until well browned on each side.

 

Carrot Mushroom Curry

carrot mushroom curry

There’s something undeniably sweet about a cooked carrot.  The sugars in the carrot turn into little bits of caramelly goodness when you cook them enough.  I find that this flavor contrasts really well with the almost meatiness of sauteed mushrooms.  Hence my carrot mushroom curry.

The technique:

It’s really simple.  First, cook onions, garlic and ginger in a pot.

IMG_1505

You want to cook this down until it gets nice and browned, constantly stirring.  Keep adding a little bit of water to it, to keep it from burning.

Next (and I apologize for not getting pictures of this step) add diced carrot and mushrooms and stir until they start to soften.

Next add curry powder (I prefer Maharajah by Penzeys) and then some garam masala.  Stir, then add yogurt, broth and salt and pepper to taste.  Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat.

If you wanted a little richer flavor, some tamarind paste (maybe a teaspoon) and tomato sauce would work well with this.

The ingredients:

  • 1 cup carrots, diced at an angle
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 cup sliced onions
  • 2 tablespoons grated ginger (it’s easier to grate if you freeze it)
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 1/2 cup yogurt
  • 1/2 cup broth or water
  • salt and pepper to taste
Carrot Mushroom Curry
oneworldplate: 
Recipe type: vegetarian curry
Cuisine: Indian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 2
 

This easy vegetarian curry will provide a delicious side dish to any Indian meal.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup carrots, diced at an angle
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 garlic clove
  • ½ cup sliced onions
  • 2 tablespoons grated ginger (it’s easier to grate if you freeze it)
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • ½ cup yogurt
  • ½ cup broth or water
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
  1. Cook onions, garlic and ginger in oil until browned.
  2. Cook this down until it gets nice and browned, constantly stirring.
  3. Keep adding a little bit of water to it, to keep it from burning.
  4. Add diced carrot and mushrooms and stir until they start to soften.
  5. Add curry powder (I prefer Maharajah by Penzeys) and then some garam masala. Stir, then add yogurt, broth and salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat.

 

Lemon Lime Tamarind Chutney Recipe

tamarind chutney

I know what you’re thinking.  “I’m not eating squid ink!”  Seriously, though, this tamarind chutney recipe is a little tart, but pretty tasty.  This is a pretty loose interpretation of the word ‘chutney’ by the way.  This is a very minimal approach to making a condiment to go along with the Oven Fried Masala Chicken or the Coconut Rice.  It’s definitely not meant to be eaten by itself.  Think of it as the culinary equivalent of a backup dancer.

So, tamarind?  What’s this stuff?  Tamarind is a little fruit found in India and other parts of South Asia.  It has large seeds and pulp that tastes both sweet and sour.  In the West it’s used as an ingredient in worcestershire sauce.

The technique:

So how do you make this stuff?

First, zest a lemon and a lime into a bowl. Like so:

IMG_1501

Next grate ginger into the bowl.  Then add tamarind paste, the juice of both the lemon and the lime, honey and sugar.  Add garam masala, salt and pepper, a little water and stir well.

And that’s it.  Very minimal.  For a variation on this you might try adding some chopped mango and perhaps cooking it down.  I’ve also added raisins in the past and then blended it until smooth.

The ingredients:

  • zest and juice of a lemon and a lime
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind paste
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons water
Lemon Lime Tamarind Chutney Recipe
oneworldplate: 
Recipe type: condiment
Cuisine: Indian
 

This Indian condiment is tart and sweet.
Ingredients
  • zest and juice of a lemon and a lime
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind paste
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tsp honey
  • ¼ tsp garam masala
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons water

Instructions
  1. Zest lemon and lime.
  2. Next grate ginger into the bowl.
  3. Then add tamarind paste, the juice of both the lemon and the lime, honey and sugar.
  4. Add garam masala, salt and pepper, a little water.
  5. Stir well.

 

A Delicious Coconut Rice Recipe

coconut rice

This coconut rice recipe is a very tasty variation of ordinary rice, and much more flavorful.  I love the fluffiness of long grain rices like Basmati, and I thought that texture would be complemented well by the addition of coconut.  To amplify the coconut flavor I used coconut juice to cook the rice, instead of water.

The thing that unifies a good Indian meal, draws everything together into a harmonious aesthetic whole, is rice.  Eating a good meal is about more than just providing fuel for the body.  It’s about feeding the soul (more on this later).

The technique:

IMG_1500

Cook grated ginger and ground mustard in oil until they starts to brown a little.  Add rice and garam masala, then ground coconut and coconut juice.  Bring to a boil.  Add yellow raisins and peas, and salt and pepper.  You may need to add a little more water.  Cover and reduce to a low heat for about 20 minutes.  Garnish with more garam masala.

The ingredients:

  • 1 cup rice
  • 1 and 1/2 cup coconut juice
  • 1/2 tsp mustard powder
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp garam masala (plus 1/8 tsp for garnish)
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 1/4 cup ground coconut flakes
  • 1/4 cup peas
  • 1/4 cup yellow raisins
  • salt and pepper to taste

Feeding your soul.  There are times, especially when I’m preparing a special meal from some other exotic locale, that I really want something to lift me up and transport me somewhere else.  Music is great for this.  If you really want to get lost when you’re cooking an Indian meal I would recommend that you listen to Anoushka Shankar‘s (Ravi Sankar’s daughter) Live at Carnegie Hall.  It’s profoundly amazing.  Her skill is breathtaking.  I had the good fortune to see her twice at the Walton Arts Center in Fayetteville.  I hope she comes back someday.

A Delicious Coconut Rice Recipe
oneworldplate: 
Recipe type: Rice
Cuisine: Indian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 2-4
 

Coconut rice is a flavorful elaboration on ordinary rice.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup rice
  • 1 and ½ cup coconut juice
  • ½ tsp mustard powder
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp garam masala (plus ⅛ tsp for garnish)
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • ¼ cup ground coconut flakes
  • ¼ cup peas
  • ¼ cup yellow raisins
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
  1. Cook grated ginger and ground mustard in oil until they starts to brown a little.
  2. Add rice and garam masala, then ground coconut and coconut juice.
  3. Bring to a boil.
  4. Add yellow raisins and peas, and salt and pepper.
  5. You may need to add a little more water.
  6. Cover and reduce to a low heat for about 20 minutes.
  7. Garnish with more garam masala.

 

Mung Bean Lentil Dal

dal, mung bean, lentil

I find cooking a good dal to be tricky but very satisfying when done correctly.  Since a large portion of the population of India is vegetarian, dals are incredibly important for basic nutrition there.  But if all you do is cook them with some water, you basically get a very thick but bland paste.  Spices are the key to averting this culinary disaster.

This is my approach.

The technique:

First, you’ll need mung beans (also called mung dal in Hindi) and red lentils (masoor dal).  I used a half cup each.

mung beans, lentils

Next, I cooked diced onion, ginger, garlic and spices in a little oil.

onions, ginger

Then I added my dry lentils, mixed them well with the oil/ginger/spice mixture, and cooked them until they started to brown a little bit, stirring well.

IMG_1496

Finally, I added water and brought it to a boil.

dal

I cooked this at a rolling boil for at least 30 minutes, adding more water periodically, until the texture of the dal was soft.  Finally, I added more garam masala, salt and pepper right before serving.

The ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup red lentils
  • 1/2 cup mung dal
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1 diced garlic clove
  • 1 tablespoon diced ginger
  • 1/2 tablespoon garam masala
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 to 3 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala garnish

This dal recipe is perfect on homemade DIY chapatis.  I’ll show you how to make them tomorrow.

Mung Bean Lentil Dal
oneworldplate: 
Recipe type: vegetarian dal
Cuisine: Indian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 2-6
 

This vegetarian dal recipe is filling and tasty.
Ingredients
  • ½ cup red lentils
  • ½ cup mung dal
  • ¼ cup diced onion
  • 1 diced garlic clove
  • 1 tablespoon diced ginger
  • ½ tablespoon garam masala
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 to 3 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala garnish

Instructions
  1. Cook diced onion, ginger, garlic and garam masala in oil.
  2. Add lentils and mung beans, stirring until toasted.
  3. Add water, a cup and a half at a time, bringing to a boil.
  4. When soft, add garam masala garnish and serve.

 

Easy Oven Fried Masala Chicken

masala chicken

There’s more that you can do with chicken and Indian spices than just chicken curry.  So I’ve come up with a technique for ‘oven frying’ chicken, with a crispy masala spice coating (to give it an Indian flair), that I call oven fried masala chicken.

The problem with frying chicken, besides the guilty look on my face when I go see my cardiologist, is the smell.  Frying food definitely stinks up the house.  But the texture of fried chicken is amazing, the crispiness of the skin, the tender juiciness of the meat.  It’s great hot or cold.

Oven fried actually means baked in this context, just so you know.  So this is relatively healthy, at least compared to a bucket of your favorite fried chicken.

The technique:

First, you’ll need some flour, some garam masala, a little salt and pepper, and some cooking spray.  You’ll also need chicken.  I used Tyson all natural chicken drumsticks (although I’m sure breasts or thighs would work just as well).  They always have great flavor and texture.

chicken, spices

Mix the flour, salt and garam masala.  Dredge your chicken through the flour-spice mixture, being sure to knock off the excess.  Place the chicken on a baking sheet with a wire rack.  Add fresh cracked pepper and then lightly spray with a little cooking spray.  Turn and repeat.  They should look something like this when you’re done:

IMG_1493

Bake for 20 minutes at 350, then flip the chicken, and bake for another 10 minutes at 400, to crisp up the skin.

The ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons garam masala spice mixture
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 8 Tyson all natural chicken drumsticks
  • fresh cracked pepper to taste
  • cooking spray

This chicken recipe is just as good the next day, or later that night, eaten by fridge-light in the darkness of your kitchen while everyone else is asleep.  Not that I’d know anything about that.

If you try out this recipe, and you like it, please let me know.  You can reach me on facebook or twitter.  There’s buttons all over the page.

Easy Oven Fried Masala Chicken
oneworldplate: 
Recipe type: baked chicken
Cuisine: Indian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 4-8
 

Oven fried or baked chicken is wonderful, but a garam masala spice mixture really amplifies the flavor.
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons garam masala spice mixture
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 8 Tyson all natural chicken drumsticks
  • fresh cracked pepper to taste
  • cooking spray

Instructions
  1. Mix flour, garam masala and salt.
  2. Dredge chicken through salt, then knock off excess.
  3. Place on a wire rack on a baking sheet.
  4. Add fresh cracked pepper to taste.
  5. Spray with cooking spray.
  6. Cook at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, then 400 degrees for 10 minutes.

 

Three Food Blog Finds

So one of the cool things about this food blogging journey that I’ve been on is  that while I’m getting my own food story out there, and having fun doing it, I’m also discovering other food bloggers who have interesting perspectives and stories of their own.  These are three of my most recent and favorite.  They all appeal to my thirst for food traditions from outside of America.

χόρτα - in plate with lemons

The Grilling Greek is a pretty awesome blog.  What he calls cooking grass (which is pretty funny, when you think about it) is actually a very good example of a frugality and flexibility that other food traditions have a lot to teach America about.  There’s also been some very compelling evidence that a diet high in exactly the kind of backyard greens that he’s talking about are part of if not the main reason that some Greeks have such a high longevity rate.

Chicken-and-Potato-Tajine-2

When I stumbled on MarocMama on twitter I realized how long it’d been since I’d cooked any Moroccan food.  I love the subtle interplay of the sweet and hot spices with other flavor components like preserved lemon or olives.  It’s familiar flavor territory if you like Middle-Eastern, Indian or Ethiopian food, but different all the same.  Her Chicken with Potato and Preserved-Lemon Tagine looks absolutely delicious, and has inspired me to make a tagine again soon.  Definitely check out what she’s doing.  It’s awesome (she doesn’t just blog about food though; her latest post is about the broadening of worldview that travel can give to children).

tandoori-cauliflower3

Sonis Food was another twitter find.  I really dig what she’s doing.  I’m no vegetarian, but there’s something amazing about roasted or broiled vegetables.  I’d say it’s magic, but I know it’s probably the Maillard reaction turning sugars in the veggies into wonderful little bits of caramelized goodness.  Magic, in other words.  At any rate, her tandoori cauliflower looks amazing, and is definitely going to be tried out soon.

So that’s three of my latest finds.  I’ll be adding them to my blogroll, and visiting them daily now to see what they’ve come up with.  If you find a foodblog you think I might like, I’m @oneworldplate on twitter.  I’d love to hear from you.