Vegetable Kurma

Vegetable Kurma(Korma)

To make a paste

  • 1/4       cup decscicated coconut
  • 1          medium tomato
  • 1          tsp fennel seeds(viriyarı)
  • 2          oz almonds or cashew
  • 2          tbsp poppy seeds
  • 1          medium tomato
  • 1          tsp ginger paste
  • 1          tsp garlic paste
  • 1/4       cup yoghurt
  • 1/4       cup water

In a blender or a food processor make a paste , using the above ingredients.

Sauce

  • 1/4       cup vegetable oil/or ghee
  • 1          medium onion, peeled and sliced thinly
  • 1          cinnamon stick(1”)
  • 6          cloves
  • 6          small cardamon
  • 1          bayleaf
  • 1          tsp black peppercorn
  • 12        tsp cumin seeds
  • 1          star anise
  • 1/2       tsp red chilli powder(or to taste)
  • 1          tsp coriander powder
  • 1          tsp cumin powder
  • 1/4       tsp turmeric powder
  •             Salt to taste
  • 2          tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 2          green chillies halved

Vegetables

You can use any vegetables of your choice.  I have used:

  • 1          cup Edamame beans
  • 1          medium sweet potato(peeled and diced to 1” cube)
  • 1          cup green beans
  • 1          cup carrots

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan heat the oil or ghee, add the sliced onion, cinnamon stick, cloves, cardamon, bayleaf, peppercorn and cumin seeds, and fry it till the onions turn light golden colour.
  2. Add the kurma paste and the rest of the spices, cook stirring a few times till the oil separates, about 5 minutes, and the mixture is thick.
  3. Add the vegetables and a 1/4 cup water, mix and cook on medium heat for 5 minutes, till the vegetables are done.  Kurma should have medium thick gravy.
  4. Serve in a bowl sprinkled with cilantro, and green chillies.
  5. Serve it with Naan, chapati and/or rice.

Matoka and Chicken(Kuku) Curry

Serves 4

Matoka.

Matoka is the green plantain banana used for cooking.

Matoka and Kuku

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Matoka

 

 

 

 

 

  • 6          Matoka
  • 1          tsp salt

Instructions.

  1. Peel the markka and cut them in chunks.
  2. Add this to a large saucepan, Add the matoka, cover it with water, add salt and bring it to a boil and simmer it for it for about 20 minutes.
  3. Mash the markka with a potato masher.
  4. Serve it hot with peanut curry or chicken/meat curry.

Chicken Curry

Ingredients

  • 1          chicken, skinned and cut into bite size pieces
  • 4          tbsp vegetable oil(or oil of your choice)
  • 1          medium onion, sliced thinly
  • 1          cinnamon stick
  • 1/4       tsp cumin
  • 5          cardamon pods
  • 10        peppercorn
  • 3          cloves
  • 1          medium tomato, sliced thinly(or pureed
  • 1          tsp garlic paste
  • 1          tsp ginger paste
  • 1          tbsp curry powder
  • 1          tbsp tomato paste
  • 1          tsp salt
  •             green chilli paste to taste
  •             Chopped cilantro for garnish.

Instructions

  1. In a large saucepan heat the oil, add the next 6 ingredients.  Fry this till the onions are soft and transparent.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients except chicken and cook for about 5 min, stirring till the tomatoes are soft.
  3. Add the chicken, add 3 cups of water and bring it to a boil, turn the temperature to medium and cook covered for about 29 minutes till the chicken is done.
  4. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro and serve. 

 

 

 

 

Varango Halwa(Karachi Halwa)

Varango Halwa

Ingredients

  • 1/2          cup corn starch
  • 1             cup tapioca
  • 21/2        cups water
  • 21/2        cups sugar
  • 21/2        cups butter
  • 1/4          tsp crushed elechi seeds
  • 1/4          tsp jiefer powder
  • 1/4          tsp saffron
  • 1/4          tsp orange colour 
  • 1             lb nuts, slivered almonds, pistachio, cashew

Instructions

  1. Soak starch overnight in 2 1/2 cups water.
  2. Grease a 9in sandwich pan or a jello mould or small moulds.
  3. Sprinkle the bottom of the dish with 1/5 of the nuts.
  4. In the morning add the sugar and melted butter and the rest of the ingredients except the nuts.
  5. Mix well and cook on med to high heat, stirring frequently.  The mixture will start to thicken and the butter will start to separate. Add  3/4 of the nuts, mix well and cook on medium heat, stirring continuously till the mixture thickens up and leaves the side of the pan.
  6. You can remove the extra butter, pour the rest in the dish and let it cool down completely.
  7. Turn the halwa on the serving dish and serve.
  8. This halwa tastes good a little warm.  Warm it in a microwave.

Oven Method.

  1. Pre heat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. When the halwa starts to thicken, put the saucepan in the oven, stir it every 10 min.  It will take about 45 minutes to cook.

Sheekh Kebab

Sheekh Kebab means kebab on a skewer, traditionally made on an outdoor grill over charcoals that add as much colour as it does flavour to the kebab.  Sheekh Kebab is a a type of Kebab, popular in South Asia, made with spiced minced or ground meat, usually lamb, beef, or chicken, formed into cylinders on skewers and grilled.  It is cooked on a barbecue, or in a tandoor.  The kebabs can be made in your oven.

Ingredients            

  • 1            jalepino(or to taste)
  •               handful fresh cilantro
  • 10          leaves mint
  • 2            lbs lean ground beef(lamb or chicken
  • 1            tsp garlic paste
  • 1            tsp ginger paste
  • 1.5         tsp salt
  • 1            tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1            tsp freshly ground cumin
  • 1            tsp garam masala
  • 1            small onion 
  • 2            tbsp finely chopped cilantro

Instructions

  1. In a blender, puree the onion, cilantro and mint leaves.
  2. Put the meat,  in a medium bowl, add the rest of the ingredients and mix together.
  3. Let the mixture rest in the fridge for a couple of hours or overnight.
  4. Make the kebabs, using the skewers.
  5. BBQ the kebabs, rotating as needed to brown on all sides, till they are cooked inside.  about 20 minutes.
  6. Once cooked slide the kebabs on a plate, sprinkle with diced onions and cilantro and serve with raita and Ambli and or green chutney.
  7. Serve it with spiced potatoes, and/or vegetarian rice or Naan.

Kebabs ready to be cooked

 

 

 

 

 

 

Note:

  1. If you are grilling the kebabs in the oven, preheat the oven to 450 degrees.  Place the rack in the upper third of the oven.  
  2. Grill the kebabs for 20-25 minutes rotating as needed to brown the kebabs on all around.

Tomato and lemon Chutney

  • 1        lemon
  • 1        tomato
  • 1/2     tsp salt
  • 1/2     tsp jeera
  • 10      red chillies(dried or fresh)
  •           fresh cilantro
  • 1        tsp Jaggery

Instructions

  1. Rinse lemon and tomato in cold water, cut it into quarters.  Remove the seeds from the lemon.  
  2. Rinse the cilantro in cold water.
  3. Put everything in a blender or a food processor and grind it to a fine paste and serve.

Ingredients for Chutney

 

 

Lamb and Roasted Vegetable Pasties

You can buy the pastry or make your own.  You will find the pastry in the freezer in the grocery store.

Ingredients

Short crust Pastry

  • 1           lb all purpose flour
  •              pinch of salt
  • 1/2        lb butter
  • 4           tbsp cold water

Filling

  • 2            carrots, sliced down the middle
  • 2            large potatoes, scrubbed and cut in half
  • 1            large (swede) rutabaga, cut into wedges
  • 2            parsnips, peeled and cut in half
  •               Sea salt flakes
  •               freshly ground black pepper to season
  • 12          oz ground lamb
  • 1            oz butter
  • 1            large brown onion, diced
  • 3            cloves garlic
  • 3            oz frozen peas
  • 2            eggs
  • 5            oz cheddar cheese
  • 2            tbsp sesame seeds

Instructions

Short Crust Pastry

  1. In a medium mixing bowl, add the flour and the salt.
  2. Cut butter into small pieces,  (about 1/2 inch cubed), and rub into the flour.  The mixture should be like bread crumbs.
  3. Stir into the mixture with the a fork.
  4. Form the pastry into a ball with your finger tips.(you may need a little more water)
  5. Lightly flour the rolling pin and board.
  6. Turn out the pastry on to the board, and with light, quick, forward strokes roll out to the thickness required.
  7. Cut and use the pastry as directed by the recipe. 

Filling

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line 2 large oven baking trays with baking paper.  
  2. Put vegetables in a large bowl, drizzle with a generous amount of oil, season and toss to coat.  Transfer to a large baking dish and roast for 60 minutes.., or until tender, turning vegetables a few times.  Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
  3. Roughly dice vegetables.  Increase oven to 200 degrees C fan forced(400 degree F)(220 degrees C conventional, 425 degrees F) Put a medium pan over medium heat. Add a little oil and ground meat, and cook, breaking up, until brown and crisp.  Drain off any excess oil and transfer to a large bowl.
  4. Put a medium saucepan over low heat,;  Add a little oil, butter, onion, garlic and season.  Cook gently for 10 minutes, until softened.  Add onion mixture, peas, 1 whisked egg and cheese to ground meat and stir to combine.  Gently mix diced vegetables through.
  5. Divide dough evenly into 10 pieces.  On a clean, dry bench, roll out each piece into a circle, about 18cm-dia.(8inches)  Brush circles with remaining whisked egg, place filling in centre of each and bring edges together, crimping pasties closed.  Move to the trays, brush with egg and sprinkle over sesame seeds.  Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden.

Note:  I rolled out the pastry to 1/4” thick and cut a 5” round, to make smaller pasties.

You can buy frozen short crust pastry from the frozen section in a grocery store.  

Lamb and roasted Vegetable pastiesLamb and Roasted Vegetables Pasties

Vegetables for pasties

Moong(Mung) nu Shak

  • 1         cup Moong Beans
  • 1/4      cup oil
  • 1/2      tsp jeera(cumin whole)
  • 1         medium onion, peeled and sliced (2 oz)
  • 1         medium tomato, diced small
  • 1/2      tsp crushed garlic
  • 1/2      tsp crushed ginger
  • 1         jalapeños crushed
  • 1/2      tsp red chilly powder
  • 1         tsp dhana jeera(Coriander and cumin powder)
  • 1/4      tsp haldi(turmeric powder)
  • 1         heaped tsp tomato paste
  • 1/2      tsp salt(or to taste)
  • 1         tbsp chopped fresh dhania(cilantro)

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, soak Moong overnight.  It will double in size.
  2. In a medium saucepan heat oil, add jeera and sliced onions.  Fry the onions, stirring a few times, till they turn golden brown.  About 5 minutes.
  3. Add the diced tomato, garlic, ginger, jalapeños, chilly powder, chana jeera and haldi.  Turn the heat to medium and cook stirring occasionally till the oil separates, about 10 minutes.  
  4. Add the tomato paste, 2 cups water and the Moong beans.  Cook on medium high till the beans are soft to the touch.  
  5. Add  the salt and cook for a couple of minutes.
  6. Serve hot, sprinkled with fresh dhania.
  7. Serve it with rice and or chapati.

Soaked Moong Beans

Green Chutney(Lili chutney)

Ingredients

  • 1             bunch cilantro(fresh dhania)
  • 2             jalapenos(or to taste)
  • 1/2          tsp salt
  • 1/2          tsp cumin seeds(jeera)
  • 1             lemon(juice only)

Instructions

  1. Chop the cilantro and jalapeño in chunks and rinse it in cold water.
  2. Add all the ingredients in a blender or a food processor and puree it.

Ingredients for green chutney

Gingerbread cake with cream cheese icing

  • 1          cup hot water
  • 3/4       cup fancy molasses
  • 1-1/2    tsp baking soda
  • 2          tbsp ginger
  • 2          tsp pumpkin spice
  • 1-1/2    tsp baking powder
  • 1/4       tsp salt
  • 2          eggs
  • 1/2       cup canola oil
  • 1          cup granulated sugar

Cream Cheese icing

  • 1          250 g-packafe cream cheese(room temperature)
  • 1/3       cup granulated sugar
  • 1-3/4    cup 35% cream

Instructions

  • Position rack in centre of oven, then preheat to 350 degree.
  • Spray 3 9-inch round cake pans with butter or pam spray and line the bottoms with parchment paper.
  • Whisk hot water with molasses in a medium bowl until smooth.
  • Whisk in baking soda.  Set aside.
  • Whisk flour, ground ginger, pumpkin spice, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.
  • Whisk eggs, oil and sugar in a large bowl.  Whisk in molasses mixture.  Gradually whisk in flour mixture just until smooth.
  • Divide batter amongst prepared pans.
  • Bake until a toothpick inserted in centre comes out clean, 20-25 minutes.
  • Cool in pans on wire racker 10 minutes.
  • Run a knife around edge of pans and turn out onto rack.  Remove parchment and cool completely, about an hour.

Cream Cheese Icing

  • Beat cream cheese with 1/3 cup sugar in a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium, until sugar dissolves and mixture is smooth, 1-2 minutes.  Reduce speed to low and slowly add cream until combined.
  • Increase speed to medium-high and beat until stiff peaks form,, about 3 minutes.
  • Scoop 1 cup icing into a piping bag fitted with a 1/2in or 1in star tip.
  • Add a dollop of icing in the centre of a serving plate.  
  • Spread one-third of the icing overtop.  Add second cake layer. 
  • Spread half of the remaining icing overtop .  Add the third cake layer.
  • Spread remaining icing on top and thinly on the sides of the cake.(you want to see the cake through the icing)

Decorate

Pipe 12 rosettes along the top edge of the cake and top with gingerbread cookies.

Tip:

Cake can be made 2 days ahead.  Wrap in plastic wrap.  Make icing just before serving.

 

Salgirah Khushialy Celebration(2020)

Birthdays are a time to express affection and thanks to those we love.

Today we express our love and gratitude to the Imam on his 84th birthday.  We would have started with a devotional program, flag raising ceremony and a breakfast in Jamat Khana, but due to covid we can not get together.

The breakfast would be paratha and sambar, raita, some kind of a square/cake and chai.

In the evening we would have Thal sufro and Gatpat and then have cake and sorbet and entertainment, dandiya ras.  This year we are celebrating virtually from

our living room.  There is all kinds of entertainment and program on the Ismaili T.V.  I am sure the immediate family will share a meal together.  We would have 

shared a meal in Jamat Khana yesterday evening with live entertainment, mehindi(henna) dandia and ras.

Back in the days when the jamat was small, cake and Khadho(Saffron Milk) was served after khana.  Now we serve Sherbat and cake. 

Khadho is a hot drink, popular in India and Pakistan, it is usually flavoured with  cardamon, nutmeg and saffron, making it very aromatic and flavourful.  It is sprinkled with almonds and pistachio..  It is a celebration drink.  It is served at parties, engagements, weddings, Birthdays and announcing the birth of a child.  It is a very delicious drink but at the same time it is also rich both in texture and also in calories.  It is not something you drink everyday.

Sherbat is a Milk shake(cold drink) flavoured with rose essence, Takmaria(basil seeds) and almonds and pistachios.  It is a celebratory drink and is served at wedding and parties, Eid and Khushiyali.

Since we are celebrating Salgirah Khusiyali on the 13December 2020, and are celebrating virtually, I made a Pistachio Cannoli Cake, Khadho and Sherbat for my family.

Kadho

Khadho

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 1           lt Homo milk
  • 1           can evaporated milk
  • 1/2        can evaporated milk or (sugar to taste)
  • 1/4        tsp freshly crushed Cardamon seeds
  • 1/4        tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 20         strands of saffron
  • 1           oz each sliced almonds and pistachio

Instructions.

  1. In a coffee grinder, or a mortar and pestle, crush cardamom seeds, nutmeg and saffron into a powder.
  2. In a medium saucepan, over medium high heat bring the milk to a boil, stirring constantly so that the milk does not burn.
  3. As soon as the milk reaches a boil, reduce the heat to low, add evaporated milk, condensed milk and the spices and cook over low heat for 5 min. stirring continuously.
  4. Pour it into cups, sprinkle with almonds and pistachio and serve.

spices