Vegetable Layer Rice

Oh I am so proud of what I churned out today for lunch 🙂 We are having a pot luck and I offered to make the main.

This “layer rice” is also notoriously called Vegetable Biryani. However I would like to keep it the way it is 😉 Layer Rice.

You shall need: (Serves 4)

For the rice-

600 gms… Basmati Rice (Soak for 30min)

3… Bay leaves

2 tsp… shahi jeera

4…. Green cardamoms

5… peppercorns

Boiling water

2 tbsp… ghee

For the vegetables-

1 cup… cauliflower florets

3 tbsp… Oil

3-4… cubed potatoes

1/2 cup… peas

1/2 cup… cubed carrots (I didn’t add, as I didn’t have any)

1 tbsp… Kasuri Methi

3-4.. green chillies

1 tbsp… dried mint or 2 sprigs fresh mint leaves

2 tsp… Shahi jeera

3-4… green cardamoms

2-3… black cardamoms

2… bay leaves

For the Marinade-

1.5 cup… Curd (a little sour is good)

2 tbsp… Almond-Khus Khus seeds paste (Make it with a few tbsp of curd)

2 tbsp… kasuri methi

2 tsp… garam masala


Red chilly powder

1 tsp… Turmeric powder

For Assembling-

Browned Onion slices (fried)

2 tbsp… Ghee

10-12 strands of Saffron soaked in warm water


  • To the boiling water, add the bay leaves, pepper corns, shahi jeera, ghee and cardamoms.
  • Add the rice and salt. Let it cook for 15-17 min or until they are a little short of being fully cooked.
  • Drain it in a colander and keep aside.
  • In a wok, heat the oil. Add jeera, cardamoms and bay leaves.
  • Add the vegetables and methi with little water.
  • Cover and cook the veggies until they still have a bite. We dont want them to be over done.
  • In the curd, mix the spices, some fried onion and the almond khus khus paste.
  • Mix the curd with the veggies that are still warm.
  • Let it sit for about 10-12 min.
  • In a microwave safe bowl, add a layer of half the rice and put a sprinkle of garam masala, saffron, ghee and some brown onions.
  • Layer the veggies on top of this.
  • Now cover them with the remaining rice and add the ghee, saffron, garam masala and onions.
  • Before serving, put it in the lowest temperature setting of the microwave to heat everything through.
  • Serve with raita and salan.

photo 1 (1)

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Pearl Onion Brown Rice Burrito #BM38

Oh Burritos save the dinners for me most of the time. They are my oh-My-God-what-do-I-made-today savers. Best part about them is that its one hand meal which makes flipping channels/clicking pictures easy 😛

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 38

You shall need:

4-5… Big chapatis

1 cup… Hung curd

2 tsp… oil

3/4 cup… cooked brown rice

1/4 cup… chopped pearl onions

2 tsp… chilly flakes

Salt to taste

1/2 cup… grated carrot

1 tsp… lemon juice

2 tsp… milk

Cheese spread (optional)


  • In a pan, heat oil.
  • Add the pearl onions and a little salt.
  • Cook until they are soft.
  • Now add the chilly flakes and rice.
  • Mix well and cook until everything is combined.
  • Bring it out of the pan and let it cool.
  • In the hung curd bowl, add the carrots, salt and lemon.
  • Add milk if needed, we need the consistency of a spread.
  • Lay the chapati on a flat surface, add cheese spread (if you like)
  • Now add a generous helping of rice and the hung curd dip.
  • Fold it and serve it with your favorite tv channel 🙂



Panch Phoran Naan

My most favorite spice mix is Panch phoran. It is Bengali spice mix and makes for the most flavorful tadka. It contains 5 spices, namely:  fenugreek seed, nigella seed, cumin seed, black mustard seed and fennel seed in equal parts. I use it in a lot of dishes so why not naan too. 🙂

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 38

You shall need: (Makes about 5)

1 cup… All purpose flour

5 tbsp… Curd

1 tsp… Baking soda

1/2 tsp… Salt

1/2 tsp… Sugar

1 tbsp… Panch Phoran (dry roast in a pan for 2-3 min)

2 tsp… oil

1 tbsp… Butter (room temp)

1 tsp… Cumin

1 tsp… Paprika


  • In a small bowl, mix butter , cumin and paprika and keep aside.
  • In a bowl, add the flour, salt, sugar, spices and knead with the curd.
  • Once the dough is nice and soft, put it in a oiled bowl, cover with tea towel and place on the counter for about an hour.
  • Pre heat oven to 190C, on a buttered tray, place a rolled dough ball.
  • Using a brush, apply a little of the spiced butter and bake for 5-7 min.
  • Take it out and apply the butter once more and return to baking it for about 7-8 min.
  • Serve hot with a dollop of the butter.
  • Serve with love.



Dessert Naan

Well I am doing the Blogging Marathon after ages and boy I am glad to be back 🙂 This week I am doing 3 variations of naan’s. I thought let me start by doing something sweet.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 38

For me things that ring a bell of dessert are nuts, cinnamon, sugar and nutella. So I used up all this in the naan. 🙂

Here is all that you shall need: (Makes about 5-6)

1 cup… All purpose flour

3.5 tbsp… Ground sugar

2 tbsp… Granulated sugar

1 tsp… Baking soda

1/2 tsp… salt

1/4 cup… Almonds

2 tsp + 2 tsp… cinnamon powder

2-3 knobs of butter

1/2 tbsp… Oil

4-5 tbsp… curd/yogurt



  • In a small bowl mix, granulated sugar and 2 tsp cinnamon powder.
  • In a medium size bowl, add the flour, baking soda, salt and powdered sugar. Mix well using a fork.
  • Now add the curd and knead it into a dough. Add a touch more curd, in case it is dry.
  • Knead until nice and soft.
  • Now add the oil and knead again.
  • Put it on a oiled bowl and leave on the kitchen counter (covered with a tea towel) for about an hour.
  • Pre heat oven at 190C.
  • Make 5-6 balls out of the dough with the help of little oil/butter in your hand.
  • Oil/ butter a tray and place the balls about 2 inch apart.
  • Press the balls down gently to form discs, you may use rolling pin but I like the more rustic form.
  • Sprinkle some of the sugar and cinnamon mix on it and top with some almonds.
  • Bake for 10 min and then take them out. Smother some butter on top using the back of a spoon/a brush and bake for another 5 min.
  • To serve, top it with nutella or honey.
  • Serve with love.




Paneer Methi Kofta Curry

A friend of mine from college has moved to Bangalore 🙂 Since I had not been there even once, going empty handed was not an option.

For me personally, picking up a gift is getting tougher by the day. Alternatively, I make them a nice meal or bake something for them. Shows my the fact that I gave my heart and soul to it. 🙂

This kofta curry is a dedication to my mother who has not altered her kofta recipe for years now. Give it a break ma try mine 😉

You shall need:

For the Kofta: (Feeds about 4)

200 gms… Paneer (grated)

2 cup…. Chopped, washed methi (fenugreek leaves)

2 tbsp… All purpose flour (you might need a touch more so keep it handy)

2 tbsp… Sesame seeds

Salt, red chilly powder to taste

1/2 tsp… Turmeric

few tbsp of water

oil to fry

For the curry:

2 cup… Thick curd/yogurt

2 large… onions (cut in quarters)

3-4.. red chillies

1 tbsp… Khus Khus seeds

1/4 cup… cashews


For tempering:

1 tbsp… Oil

1 tsp… Jeera/cumin seeds

a Pinch of asafoetida


To make the koftas:

  • Heat the oil for deep frying.
  • In a bowl, add the paneer, methi, maida, salt, red chilly powder, sesame and turmeric.
  • Add a little water at a time, only so much that the mixture binds well.
  • Make a small ball and test the oil and the kofta mix. Once it is in the oil, it should not brown immediately and must not split. If it splits, add more maida.
  • Make balls of the same size and lower them in the oil 4-5 at a time.
  • Make sure they brown well equally.
  • Take them out on a tissue and keep aside.

To make the curry:

  • In a grinder, add the red chillies, khus khus, cashews and onions and grind well.
  • Add curd and salt to this and churn once more.
  • In a pan, heat oil and add let jeera splutter. Add the asafoetida.
  • Pour the churned mix in the tempering and let it cook on a medium heat with a lid on.
  • Stir ocassionally.
  • Once the oil floats on top, the sauce is ready.
  • Lower the koftas in the curry and serve with love.


Sending this to:

Herbs and Flower give away

Walk Through Memory lane brain child of Gayathri

at Anu’s healthy kitchen

Herbs on Saturday for June: Cooking with Herbs Challenge - Win a Pot of Culinary Lavender Grains

and Helen‘s space

Simple and in Season

H: Hara Panner Tikka

I try to keep a box of green chutney in the fridge. Please note that the key word here is TRY. Not that it happens all the time. Sheelu from cookcookandcook makes kick ass chutney and I had a box full in the fridge thanks to her. 🙂

Paneer Tikka is a famous Snack from Notherns India. On the days when I am low carbing, this comes to rescue. I dont go through the pain of grilling them in the oven, I do it on the shallow pan and it gives me great results.

This post is a part of Blogging Marathon. For the first week of BM#32 [2nd – 7th Sep], I am going Regional.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#32.

You shall need:

200 gms… Panner [Diced]

5-6 tbsp…Green chutney

3-4 tbsp… Thick curd

Salt and red chilly powder

1 … capsicum [diced]

1.. onion [diced]

3-4 tbsp…. tomato puree

Kasoori methi- optional

Few tbsp oil


  • In a bowl, mix curd, chutney, salt and red chilly.
  • Add paneer to it and let it marinate for 20-30 min.
  • In a non stick pan, put a few drops of oil and then add the paneer pieces, one by one.


  • Let them cook and brown well on one side, flip them
  • Once they cook on all sides equally, take them out in a plate and keep aside.
  • In the same pan, add a few drops of oil and pour the puree and remaining marinade from the bowl.
  • Cook the onions and capsicum in it slightly and add the paneer.
  • Toss them around and serve warm.


Strawberry Jalapeno Lassi

Yippeeeeeeeeeeeee 300th post it is \m/

Jalapeno is a kind of pepper that is generally pickled. it is widely used in Mexican cuisine. And we love it in our house 🙂

What do you do when your husdband scolds you for stashing the fridge with strawberries, mulberries, peas etc? You bribe them by giving them a taste of those things in the freshest from possible when the season is gone 🙂

After his quest of playing cricket for 6 hours, I made this strange combination. It certainly is an acquired taste but trust me it grows on you. 🙂

This recipe is part of the 30 day Blogging Marathon for this month. Check out other participants here in the Blogging Marathon page.

Week- 3

Theme- Seasonal

Dish for Day – lassi

Seasonal Produce- Strawberry

You shall need: [Feeds 1]

1 cup… Thick yogurt

2-3 tbsp… Castor sugar

1/3 cup… Strawberries [I used ones from my frozen stash]

5-6… jalapenos [Slices]

A pinch of sugar

Ice cubes


  • Easy breezy… Dunk all the ingredients in a mixer and churn churn churn.
  • Adjust the sweetness.
  • Serve cold.



Paneer Butter Masala

The butter masalas in all forms are almost a national favorite. What makes this dish so favourite? Butter masala is a creamy tomato-ey, orange curry which can is flavored with yogurt and fresh cream [Or cream from a carton].

This recipe is part of the 30 day Blogging Marathon for this month. Check out other participants here in the Blogging Marathon page.

Week- 2

Theme- Traditional

Dish for Day – Paneer Butter Masala

Origin- Northern India

You shall need [Feeds 2]

200 gms… Fresh Cottage cheese/paneer [Cut in cubes of equal size]

2 …tomatoes [Medium size]

2-3.. green chillies

1 tbsp.. Ginger garlic paste

1-2 tbsp… Thick Yogurt

1…Large Onion

3 tbsp… Fresh cream [Or carton cream]

1 tsp.. Jeera

1 tsp… Garam Masala

pinch of turmeric

Salt to taste

1-2 tbsp… Kasoori methi [Dried fenugreek leaves]

2 tbsp.. Ghee

2 blobs of butter


  • Make a paste of onions, green chillies, tomatoes, ginger garlic paste and yogurt.
  • In a pan, heat the ghee and add the jeera.
  • Once it changes color, add the puree and cook it until the fat comes on top.
  • Add a blob of butter and add the salt, turmeric and red chilly powder if needed.
  • Now add the paneer and let it be coated in the masala.
  • Add the cream and stir well.
  • Cover and let it simmer for 3-4 min on a medium flame.
  • Dry Roast the kasoori methi in a pan and add to the dish.
  • Serve with roti/naan/chapati.
  • Add the final blob of butter on top.

paneer butter masala



Maah Di Dal/Dal Makhni

This is the King of all Dals. [Not queen because it is very robust and flavorful] Black lentils mixed with a little red kidney beans and gram dal is a match made is heaven.

Whenever I make this one, I hardly get time to click a decent picture of it. 🙂

Week- 2

Theme- Traditional

Dish for Day – Maah Di dal

Origin- India-Pakistan

This recipe is part of the 30 day Blogging Marathon for this month. Check out other participants here in the Blogging Marathon page.

You shall need [Feeds 4]

1 cup… Aakhi Urad or Black lentil

1/2 cup… Rajma or kidney beans

1/4 cup… Chana dal or split gram lentil

2… Medium size onions

3…. Medium size tomatoes

3 tbsp… Thick yogurt

2… green chillies

1 tbsp… ginger garlic paste

2 tbsp… Ghee

1 tbsp… Jeera

3…big cardamom pods

1.. Stick cinnamon

Salt and red chilly powder to taste

1/2 cup… Fresh cream/malai

1/8 cup… Butter


  • Rinse and soak the lentils over night in a big bowl with 3 times the water.
  • In the morning, wash the lentils in a clean mesh and pressure cook with 4 cups water, some salt for 4 whistles on full flame and 5 on a medium flame.
  • Puree the green chillies, ginger-garlic paste, tomatoes, onions and yogurt.
  • In  a pan, heat the ghee and let the jeera splutter.
  • Add the cinnamon and cardamom pods.
  • Add the tomato onion puree and add the red chilly powder and salt.
  • Cook until the masala is done.
  • To this, add the boiled dal and stir well.
  • Add the butter once it comes to the boil.
  • Cook on an open fire fir about 30 min.
  • Add water if it thickens a lot.
  • Just before finishing, add the fresh cream and serve with fluffy rice and parathas.

maah di dal


Punjabi Kadhi

For BM#26 the first theme I chose is “Cooking from a cook book of different authors with a single ingredient”

I chose “Gram Flour”. Second course “Main Dish” I picked the  cookbook “Simple Cooking from Grandma’s Kitchen” by “Karen Anand” . I have made Gujarati Kadhi a lot but here is the punjabi version.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#26.


You shall need:

For the Kadhi-

2 cup… Curd

1 cup… Gram flour/besan

2 tbsp… oil

1/4 tsp… Mustard seeds

1/4 tsp…. Nigella seeds [Kalaunji]

1/4 tsp… Fenugreek seeds

1-2… Dried chillies

1/4 tsp… Haldi powder

Salt to taste

For the pakodi/dumplings-

1 cup… Besan

1/4 tsp… Salt

1 tbsp… Warm oil

1/2 cup… Curd

Oil to deep fry

Method: For Kadhi-

  • Whisk curd until creamy and add 5 cup of water.
  • Put gram flour in another bowl and add the curd water mix little at a time. Make sure it is not lumpy.
  • Heat oil in a pan on moderate heat..
  • Add whole spices. Add chillies
  • Add turmeric.
  • Pour in the curd-water-gram flour mix.
  • Add salt and bring to a boil stirring continuously.
  • Reduce the heat and cook for 20 min.
  • Remove from heat and set aside.

For pakodi/dumplings-

  • Mix gram flour, salt and oil in a bowl.
  • Add curd and mix well.
  • We need a thick batter, add a couple of tbsp of water if needed.
  • Mix the batter until it becomes light and airy.
  • Heat oil for deep frying the pakodas.
  • Make small dumplings and lower in the oil.
  • Fry until they are nice and golden brown.
  • Remove with slotted spoon.
  • Add to the kadhi and simmer it for 10 min.
  • Serve with rice.

kadhi rice