Friday, February 22, 2013

Paruppu Podi

Podi means powder in Tamil. This is one of the mixes that can be made and stored. The days when there is no Rasam or Sambar, you can mix this with hot rice and ghee and add a 'sutta aplam' as a side.

You need
Toor Dal 1 cup
Red chillies 2 or 3
Black Pepper 1 Tsp
Hing 1 Tsp
Salt as needed
Roast the dal, chillies, Black Pepper, in a thick bottomed pan, on a medium flame.

Make sure the flame is a steady medium and keep stirring the pan constantly so it doesn't burn.

You should roast this until it changes color. It took about 12 mins for me.

Add the Hing in the last two minutes.

Let cool, and grind to a fine powder.

Mix with hot rice and ghee!

Satvik Paneer

Satvik simply means pure. In this case, I call it Satvik Paneer because there is no onion and garlic in it. Also called the 'Jain' Version because of the same reason. 

On festival days, food is usually prepared without adding onions or garlic. 

When i was growing up, onions were rarely used in our house and garlic was an absolute No No. Once every blue moon when the small onion sambar was made it was an absolute delicacy. 

During the nine days of Navarathri, Onions and garlic are not used in everyday cooking. I made this as an accompaniment to the roti that was served.

Basically to make 'Jain' version of any recipe, you have to add more flavors to mask the missing onion flavor and use lots of tomatoes.

For about 4 to 6 servings here is the recipe

You Need
Tomatoes - 6
Green Chili -2
Ginger - 1 and 1/2 Inc piece
Oil - 2 Tsp
Butter - 1 Tsp
Kasoori Methi - 2 Tsp
Red Chili Powder - 1/2 Tsp
Roasted Dhaniya /Coriander Powder - 1/2 Tsp
Roasted Jeera / Cumin Powder - 1/2 Tsp
Garam Masala - 1 Tsp
Yogurt (well beaten) - 3 Table Spoons
Salt - about 1 and 1/2 Tea spoons (more or less according to your taste)
Paneer - Standard small slab that you get in the Indian store, cut in desired size

#It helps if you mix all the dry masala powder in water so there are no lumps and also the masala wont burn.
#You can prepare the Dhaniya Jeera masala powder ahead of time in a larger quantity and store. 
#Please adjust the spiciness of this Sabji to your taste.


In a Food processor, grind the tomatoes, green chili and the ginger.

In a pan, on a medium flame, add the oil and butter and once the butter melts, add the kasoori methi.

Add the mixture of masala and water to this and let it come to a slow boil -about 3 to 4 minutes

Add the tomatoes mixture to this, and add salt to this and close the pan so everything can come together and thicken - about 10 minutes

Once the mixture is thick, slow down the flame and add the yogurt and mix well

On the side, if you prefer, roast the paneer a bit, (i do it, because my kids dont like the paneer if it is not sauteed, but if you don't mind you can skip this step)

Add the Paneer to this and garnish with coriander leaves.

Serve hot with Pulav or Rotis.

Butter Paneer

Butter Paneer
  I have made both the Instant Butter Paneer version posted by Chef Vah Re Vah, here, and the traditional version posted by Sindhi Rasoi, here. I dont have a picture of the Vah re Vah version. The picture above is the Sindhi Rasoi Version.
Here is my verdict........(drum roll please)

The Instant Butter Paneer is really that... instant. It just takes time to assemble the items you need.
For the first time in my life I bought fried onions. (Never knew they sell it in the stores here). And was shocked, because the onions were far beyond recognizable. The taste is exactly like the stuff you get in restaurants. But you will get tired of this in one meal.

The Sindhi Rasoi recipe was a long process, with a ton of stuff to soak, grind, fry respectively.
What you need
I did lose patience with the process by the end. Instead of grinding all the fried onions, I just ground half of the onions. Also, I always lightly fry the Paneer before adding to any subji, because that's the way my kids like it. If you like paneer, as it comes from the store, you can add it like that.
The end result was a flavorful dish. The paneer soaked in the masala nicely and was a great accompaniment to our dinner. Please get the step by step instructions from the Sindhi Rasoi blog directly.