Facebook Badge

Monday, December 3, 2012

Som Tam - Thai Papaya Salad

When it comes to comfort food, this tops my list. Yes, I know, Kachha Papita , Kancha pepe, but just give it a shot. This is pure bliss.. texture  color, freshness and health all packed in a single dish . The cutting is the main thing in this salad for the perfect thin julienne, please use a peeler and make slices  if papaya and carrot and then further shred it down. Grating will not give the same effect. 

Raw Papaya 300g
Carrot 1 nos
Spring Onion 50g
Onion 1 nos Sliced
Coriander stems 1 tbsp Chopped
Crushed Peanuts 50g
Coriander leaves for garnish

For dressing
Oil few drops
Ginger ½ tsp grated
Garlic ½ tsp grated
Green Chili 1 chopped
Jaggery (gur) / palm sugar 2 tbsp
Fish sauce 1/2 tsp
Vinegar 2 tbsp

  • For dressing, heat oil and fry green chili , ginger and garlic,
  • add the jaggery and vinegar and cook till a this syrup is formed
  • add the seasonings and leave oil on the sides
  • finely shred the papaya and the carrot
  • soak in iced water for a few minutes till crisp and arrange on a  plate
  • top with crushed peanuts and coriander stems and onion
  • and gently pour the dressing when cool
  • Garnish and serve

P.s. if u dont have fish sauce , or you are vegetarian, this tastes just as good without it.. u can also substitute fish sauce with drop of LEE KUM KEE Oyster Mushroom Sauce. 

Khapun Kahp... see you soon with another recipe

Monday, November 26, 2012

Strawberry Gateaux .... LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT

Winter brings to us a lot of things, pleasant weather, happiness, celebration, and my favorite of them all Strawberries. A strawberry is not a fruit, its a symbol of love, a mouthful of strawberry and cream and feel like a blissful winter morning fulling your sense. 

Have been making this Gateaux for years now.... and its never failed to bring a smile .. 
A gateaux can be good and with a little care it can become mind blowing. Here is a recipe for a gateaux as light as cotton.. 

For Cake 

100 g sugar
5 eggs 
Red Colour few drops 
Maida 110 g 

  • beat eggs and sugar till sugar is dissolved and the eggs become stiff like whipped cram 
  • add few  drops red colour 
  • fold in the maida with a fork, be very gentle 
  • bake in a lined cake tin at 190 degrees for 25 mins.. 

For Icing 

300 g whipped cream 
4 tbsp icing sugar
chopepd strawberries 1 cup 
light sugar syrup with a hint of strawberry essence  1/2 cup 

  • mix suagr and cream together 
  • cut the cake into three and layer soaking cake with sugar syrup 
  • add a layer of cream and strawberry 
  • repeat the process with second layer
  • top with third layer and cover in cream 
  • garnish as desired with chopped strawberries 

Drunken Christmas ... HIC HIC HIC !!!

Cooking is  BAD BAD profession, one does not realise where time flies, cooking transports one to a level where people, money, sorrow, joy, they all just become hazy and one one can thing of is ... aroma, magic, texture, presentation, and to top it all off intoxication.

speaking of intoxication, we are at the time of the year when intoxication is at its all time high, yupp you guessed it right, Chirstmas. with every single cake shop already working on the fruit cake, I too decided to soak my fruits in an ocean full of booze .

what went in .

Glazed Cherries

and then came the spices
All spice

and the Booze

Red wine

well, some people tell me that my cake is a tad bit Boozy, well whats a Christmas without the warmth of spices and the rum filling you up..

The Mixture is soaked.... sealed... and locked away for a month... and will open and get baked ..

Christmas cake baking is addictive, the combined aromas of the spices and even beacon people to come over and just forget the mundane-ity of day to day like, grab a piece... or two.... or maybe three....
and just here soft Christmas carols and slip away into a place call Happiness...

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Karha Prashad.. (aate ka halwa)

When it some to some sweets of daily eating, punjabi households bring up halwas. Be it religious ceremonies, or the arrival of a new bride, or any festivity, the Halwa holds a rather important place in the culinary repertoire of most Indian house-wives. I have grown up eating some of the best versions and this particuar one is a monsoon favourite. The Aaate ka Halwa is the Karha Prashaad served in Gururdwaaras all across the world and i have grown up eating this on rainy days.

an easy recipe, just a few places one needs to be careful 

Ghee 1 cup 
Atta 1 cup 
Sugar 1 cup
Water 2 cups 
cardamom powder 1/2 tsp 
Cashew nuts 1 handful 

  • Make a sugar syrup with sugar, water and cardamom powder 
  • melt ghee in a pan and add atta before the ghee is too hot 
  • cook the atta in the ghee till u get a biscutty aroma 
  • add cashew till the atta turns golden 
  • gently add the sugar syrup and stir vigorously 
  • cook till the halwa thickens and leaves the edges of the kadhai clean.

sugar syrup


atta ( whole wheat flour)


this recipe is super easy... and still a comfort food.. try and lemme know how it was...


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Instant Pizza Dough !!

Wonder why we hesitate to make pizza at home? Well, for the people i know mostly because of the dough. one can never really get that same flavor with that of a market made pizza base. As a chef I like my pizza thin, crusty and fresh. What does one do if they don't have yeast at home? I came up with this innovative idea and tried and Voila ! it worked

Instant Pizza Dough

Refinef Flour 2 cups
Curd 2 tbsp
sugar 1 tsp
Eno (fruit salt) 1 tsp

  • Knead the dough and keep aside for 20 mins 
  • Knock back 
  • and use 
  • This recipe will yield dough doe 4 8 inch pizzas 

follows steps as shown in the pictures

you will need the following

Pizza Sauce 2 cups
Parmesan cheese 100g
mozzarella cheese 100g
processed cheese 100g
chopped olives 3 tbsp
chopped jalapenos 3 tbsp
handful of golden corn
few slices of capsimum

Layer as shown in Pictures

Roll Dough on Baking tray

Top with Generous amount of Pizza Sauce

Spread Evenly all over the base

Sprinkle Parmesan Cheese 

Add Processed Cheese and Mozzarella 

Add The Veggies 

Preheated oven at 250 degrees Celsius 

10 - 15 mins of baking til crust is golden 

 Voila !! The thin crust pizza is ready.... serve hot..... 

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Rajmah ke Kebaab

Vegetarianism can be quite a lot of fun if one knows how to play along with ingredients. Hailing from a vegetarian family, I am forever inspired by my Mum's endeavors to be cook new delights to please us. This recipe is dedicated to Mum and created to bring a smile on her face. Also my pestering students who keep forcing me to make new dishes in our little cooking class. so here goes.


Rajman (kidney bean) 1 cup 
Boiled potatoes 2 large
onions 1 large (chopped)
green chilies 1 large (chopped) 
Grated ginger 1/2 tsp 
Everest Meat Masala 1/2 tsp 
Sattu ( roasted Gram Flour) 2 tsp 
olive oil 1 tsp
crushed coriander seeds 1/2 tsp 
ice cream sticks 15 nos

flour 2 tbsp 
water 1/2 cup ( chilled) 
baking powder 1 pinch 

Chat masala for sprinkling
lemon wedges and chutney as accompaniment 


  • soak rajma overnight, and boil till soft
  • blitz the rajma and mash with boiled potato to for am soft dough and add Sattu 
  • in a non stick pan, heat olive oil and crackle the coriander seeds and chilies
  • add the ginger and saute for a few seconds
  • add chopped onions to the tempering and the dry spices. cook till brown 
  • add the spiced onions to the Rajma paste
  • mix together 
  • use ice-cream sticks and the kebaab mixture and shape like chicken drum sticks 
  • put in the freezer for 30 mins so that they set
  • make the batter by mixing flour, chilled water, salt and baking powder
  • coat each stick in batter and deep fry 
  • serve hot 

P.S.  Shape like a croquet ( cylinder ) and it can be called Rajma ke Shammi 
P.P.S. Shape like a patty ( thin round ) and grill on a griddle plate and call it Rajmah ke Galuti
P.P.P.S. Also a great item to make rumaali rolls with coriander chutney and Lachha onions
Will soon bring to you a nice and easy Phirni.....
Khudah Hafiz.....

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Make Your Own Tandoor....

As much as i want to hide, the Punjabi in me does manage to pull off a "peek-a-boo". What I want to bring to you today is what i began this blog with - Breads. Breads form an integral part of Punjabi cuisine and naan and kulchas being most important. As much as one tries, a griddle plate cannot replace a Tandoor in terms of texture and flavor. The mordern day houses or flats do not allow us to be able to install a tandoor in the house.

What i am bringing to you today is a quick and easy way of making a tandoor with a Five Kilo GHEE TIN.

First let me share a recipe for a quick and easy Naan Dough :

Naan Dough

Maida 2 cups
Sugar 1 tsp
Dahi  / Curd 2 tbsp
1 egg
Baking powder 1 large pinch

  • Knead with warm water and keep aside for 1 hour 
  • cover with a damp cloth till you use it

now lets process the TIN..... 

  • cut open the tin completely to make it look like a bin 
  • heat the tin and temper the metal 
  • apply some ghee and keep aside
NEVER WASH THE TIN.... heat well before use 

Make the naan Shape bay rolling it ... should be at least 4 mm thick

Preaheat the tin

apply water on one side and with the watered surface towards the inside of the tin , paste the naan 

apply three or four while tine tin is lying on the flame horizontally 

Next invert the tin on the flame and cook till the naans are golden brown 

apply butter and serve hot 

 Serve with some piping hot dal makhani...or some hot chholey..... and VOILA!!...

With that same dough one can make kulchas with various fiillings....in the same method....

Shab-bakahir till next time.....

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Quick Pan Gilled Fish.....

When ever i am lazy, and i am craving sea food, this dish is the quickest whip up. One can eat this with ease, its light,  not too heavy on the gut, and hassle free.

so here goes ...


Bekti Slice 350 g  
MSG 1 pinch
Corn flour 1 tbsp
Chili Sauce 1 tsp
Oil for grilling
Chopped Onion 1 large
Chopped Capsicum 1 large
Oregano 1 tsp
Chili flakes 1 tsp
Pizza Sauce (basic tomato pasta sauce) 2 tbsp


  • Marinate the fish with salt, pepper, sugar, chili sauce, MSG, and cornflour
  • Heat a non stick pan and drizzle some oil and grill the fish cooking on a high flame 2 mins on each side
  • Keep aside, in the same pan, drizzle a few more drops of oil and saute the onion and capsicum 
  • When the onion turns pink add the pizza sauce, oregano, chili flakes, salt, pepper and sugar
  • Toss the grilled fish in with the veggies and cook on a high flame. 
  • Do not over handle the fish. 

Charming Chingri..........

Being born to a Punjabi family, I have always been a gastronomical misfit. Where in the whole family would chomp on Paneer Makhanwala and Sarson Saag and Makki Di Roti, I hold a soft corner for local fare in Bengal. Didn't have much to do today, so I decided to stir up one of the most talked about dishes in Bengal ....Chingri Malai  Curry. This is not an authentic version but i like coking it this way..... 

So .. Here Goes !!!!


Tiger Prawns 6 nos (slit with a pair of scissors and de-veined ) 
Ghee 4 Tbsp
Cinnamon Sticks 2 nos 
Sugar 1 tbsp 
Lemon juice 1 tsp
Red chili powder 1 tbsp
Coriander Powder 1 tbsp 
Coconut Milk 1 cup ( diluted with 1/2 cup water) 
Double Cream 2 tbsp
Onions 2 nos (made into a fine paste ) 
Chilies 2 nos (blended with the onions) 

  • Marinate the prawns with salt, pepper and lemon juice
  • Heat the ghee and fry the prawns just till they turn red. ( 3 - 5 mins) 
  • Remove the prawns and using the same ghee temper the cinnamon sticks 
  • Add the onion and chili paste ans saute till the moisture starts to dry (5 -7 mins)
  • Add the Chili powder, Coriander Powder, Sugar and some pepper and saute till the oil appears on the sides
  • Keep adding some water from time to time to prevent the spices from burning 
  • Add the prawns , the diluted coconut milk and cream and cook the gravy till oil appears on the surface
  • Check the seasoning and the remove the prawns from the gravy 
  • Reduce the gravy till thick and velvety and nape over the prawns 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Amchi Mumbai.....

Time and again, I have reiterated the fact that I share a bond with Mumbai that cannot be expressed in words. It is here that I hav found many a treasures, both gastronomic and non gastronomic in nature. There is one such place in Mumbai which has never failed to surprise me. Juhu Chowpatty.... this is the local name for the beach panorama that goes on at JUHU.

A whole entourage of things to do, balloons, horse and camel rides, henna, candy floss, and junk food lovers' paradise. I normally like to talk delicacies, textures, presentations, aromas... but we tend to forget the most important element, FUN... When it comes to fun no body does it better than The Mumbaikar. As a city Mumbai has a lot of hardships, every day is but an excuse for existence, the city is always just trying to survive. Cutthroat competition, sky high prices, and a city that moves even faster than life. An exact opposite of this is seen at mumbai's own Chowpatty, where ppl shed all their worries, their sorrows, and their hectic lives, and just enjoy being human. 

A strange experience I hav to share today, must hav gone to Chowpatty after 3 yrs, (in the evening) and I go to buy a bhutta (corn on the cob) and the bhutta walla recognizes me (not because of my  gigantic wait size). He asks me if I would like to take 2 like always. I was blown away and had a random conversation with him which lasted 20 minutes. Mumbai always gives me mixed feelings, there are times that I get frustrated thinking how life is just a mere rat race here, and others when people like a random junk food vendor can simply bring a smile to your face with so much warmth. 

Next i had  a photo session with a Chooran Wala ( man who sells sour things). The man offered me a sampling of all his goodies and I being my cheap self was elated at the offer.sour tamarind, raw mangoes. assortment of salted and spiced berries, chutneys, goose berries.. each with a taste bud tickling capacity that is beyond compare. It seemed as if I was in a time wrap, and transported  to my school gate and re lived my childhood. "Sour " has always been my sole weakness in taste, stealing tamarind from my mother's kitchen and giving too hoots about tonsillitis. Childhood seems like a distant array of rainbow colors, which seem really difficult to forget. Like the little colorful wind mills and figurines made out of balloons, all seem like a yearning and beacon time to take an about turn.

I wonder why I am so enticed by the Barf Ka Gola ( flavoured ice lollies) i know for a fact that the water used to make the ice is not of good quality, intense dosage of artificial colors and flavors,  but the fragment of me craving to get into the celebration called life forces me very time and i hav the famous Kaala Khatta ....(black and sour) This is the most popular of them all... one has a wide range of poisons to chose from, like someone trapped every emotion in bottles and each provoking you and calling  you to set them free....

Besides all these many a vendor will summon u to their stall promising u the best quality. Taking their word, every stall is world class, trust ur instinct, the stall that is the maximum crowd is the best one.... be patient, u will be served... As they say Patience is a virtue.... From the Paani Puri,(water filled crisps) to the sev puri..... ragda pattice (curried dried peas topped on potato patty), kairi chaat ( spiced raw mangoes) and the all in in , butter loaded, super tasty, Mumbai original , PAW BHAJI. (Bun and vegetable ). Chaos is mumbai signature sign of quality. If the food is good, its the survival of the fittest in the queue.

I always have grevience with Mumbai, i curse its chaos, get ridiculed by the quality of life and repulsion by the sheer mundane day to day activities, but it is the spirit of the residents of Mumbai that make my heart melt, I am elated at the sight of how these people still manage to keep themselves going. When at the beach Mumbai forgets all its parallel social strata, life styles, class barriers. They find happiness in the smallest things, sunset at the beach, with the gentle waves playing footsie, and rubbing in gentle spurts of happiness. And as the sea takes away sorrows as it treads backwards, leaving behind footprints an a story untold, the story of Mumbai.

Thursday, January 12, 2012


Food, as i always say, is an indulgence as old as mankind, an age old addiction that some times can make people make more helpless than little kids, made me feel like one too today. have not written anything for long, my apologies, but have not eaten any food that has inspired me to write, in a long long longggg time.

Well, when you drive through old ballygunj, Bondel road, etc, the colours one gets to see are grey, black, brown , faded red ( that was painted over 50 years ago) . but in the middle of this nostalgic old world walk, if you see a bright yellow window, a bottle green canopy, and a chirpy looking place, you have reached Bohemian.

A contemporary restaurant keeping the lovely root flavors of Bengal in mind. bohemian has something for all to relish

Devilled Mushroom

Spinach And Corn Wraps
our order consisted of the following
Devilled Mushrooms
Corn and spinach wrap

Gondhoraj Prawns 
Lamb Roast with Bhuna Sauce
Cottage Cheese and Kidney Bean Casserole 
Stuffed Mushrooms

Malpua Cheese Cake 
Gandharaj Souffle
Gur-a-mel Custard

 To begin with, if your in a hurry, don't come to this place, this place is for people who enjoy not only food but also the process of it being prepared, and the eager wait for it to arrive, it has a very cozy ambiance, some vintage rock music playing, rock posters, and pictures of some rock classics on clothes pegs at the window,
I love the thought that went behind every little detail of the place....

Cottage Cheese and Kidney Bean Casserole
The starter was good. but the main course is what left me craving,  the casserole, with its velvety gravy, and delicious greens ( most probably kalmi saag), the delicious spiked gravy of the mushrooms. The lamb too was tender as hell, smooth on the bite and beautiful bhuna gravy with with. The gandharaj prawns are pretty much similar to the Bengali classic chingri maali curry , although the gandharaaj flavors did give it a very Thai feel. The meal was not on well cooked, but the plating aesthetically designed.

Work of not only an experienced chef, but one who loves food and respects every ingredient. Good food should talk to you, and the food here did not only talk, but also make me long for every bite coming, when the main course ended, our stomachs were full to the brim, but we still ordered dessert.

Stuffed Mushrooms 

Roast Lamb With Bhuna Sauce

Gandharaj Prawns

Malpua Cheese Cake 

Gandharaj Souffle
Getting to the dessert was like a journey. Little did we realize the the dessert will be like a miraculous climax to this love making session we had with our taste buds. Cant stop thinking about the malpua cheese cake, delicately flavored, and skillfully made, or the bitter sweet gandharaaj souffle. and not forget, The Gur-a-mel, now that is nothing new, its caramel made with gur(jaggery). and it topped over a brown custard.....

when the dessert got over, we felt like little kids who have been suddenly derived of their favorite toys.

Craftily designed, and beautifully executed. Chef Joy  Banerjee, Kudos!

for one i was over eaten and still craving for maybe a lilt bit more.....and yes..... MY NEW FAVOURITE....