Annddd, we’re back! Bringing you Stuffed Capsicums with Saucy Tomato lovin’!

I’ve been slacking. Big time. I first lost interest in posting to this blog when life took over (hello baby, you’re 3 years old now!) and it just got too busy to be spending my time on posting recipes for mostly unappreciative people. But I’ve gotten over that (the unappreciated people, not the baby!) and here I am again! And this time around we’re going to the original essence of blogging! So now the posts will include some a lot of chatter along with recipes that we love and would love for you to share! Sabeen, my-food-blogger-in-crime, will get back here soon too, so there is much fun around the corner!

I believe that the dish I am sharing today is of Arab origin. I’m not entirely sure. All I know is that it is very very tummy. My sister would make this for me and I never bothered to learn how to make it myself because every time I had a craving, I would just commission her to make it for me. I think she indulged my demands the most while I was pregnant and off late I have noticed her getting lazy and slacking at my cook-it-for-me requests. So, there was only one thing to be done now…I decided to corner her and weasel the recipe out her. Oh it’s so gloriously easy and delicious!

I must admit that one of the bigger reasons to re-start blogging was how obliged I’ve been feeling to share the this recipe (and the salted caramel popcorn recipe) with people who have asked for it. I love sharing my recipes just as much as I enjoy trying recipes from others. And anyone who knows me knows that I do not hesitate to ask for a recipe when I like something someone has made. Some are generous and share right away, some need a fair amount of coaxing and stalking and there are always some who will eat toothpaste for breakfast before they share the love. We’ll talk about the last type when I am in the mood for a rant someday.

But for now, on to business. I present to you, the most delicious way to eat your capsicum.

Image

Serves 4-6

Apart from an appetite, you will need the following:

Oil - 1-2 tbsp
Ginger paste – 1 tbsp
Garlic paste – 2 tbsp
Onions - 2 medium sized, chopped
Green chilies – 6-12, finely chopped
Minced meat – 400g (it doesn’t matter if it’s chicken or beef, whatever flavor you prefer. It tastes kick ass both ways)
Cumin powder – 1 tsp
Red chili powder – 1 tsp
Bouillon Cubes – 2 (either chicken or beef, depending on what meat you are using)
Parsley – 1/2 cup, chopped
Rice – 2 cups, washed and drained
Water – 5 cups, boiling
Salt – as per taste
Tomato paste – 4 tbps
Capsicums – 6-8, large and even shaped (ideally they should be able to stand on their own)

For the saucy tomato:
Tomatoes – 8, large, quartered
Green chilies – 1-2
Salt – as per taste

Step 1: Preparing the meat

  1. Heat the oil in a vessel and add the ginger paste and garlic paste and saute for a couple of seconds.
  2. Add the chopped onions and green chilies. Fry until the onion is translucent.
  3. Add the washed and drained minced meat, cumin powder, chili powder and bouillon cubes and mix well.
  4. Cook on low fame for 15-20 minutes, or until the meat is cooked. You may add a little water if needed to avoid any burning or sticking.
  5. Once cooked, turn off the flame and add the chopped parsley. Set aside.

Step 2: Preparing the rice

  1. In a vessel add the boiling water, half the amount of salt you would usually add (roughly 1-2 tsps) and add the rice.
  2. Allow to cook until half done.
  3. Drain, run over with cool water and drain again. Set aside.

Step 3: Preparing the filling

  1. Mix together the minced meat prepared in Step 1 and the rice prepared in Step 2 along with the tomato paste* and mix well.

Step 4: Preparing the capsicums

  1. Using a knife, horizontally chop off the “head” of the capsicum. Do not throw off the head. (See picture above if you don’t get it.)
  2. Using a knife, clean out the side of the capsicum. Set aside. Repeat for all capsicums.

Step 5: Preparation for the saucy tomato

  1. In a blender, add the tomato, salt and chilies. Whizzzz away until blended.

Step 6: Putting it all together, cooking and eating!

  1. Take a vessel that is higher than the height of the capsicum and in which all the capsicums fit tightly, standing upright. To test, place all the cleaned out capsicum into the dish. They should fit well supporting each other. You do not want the dish to be too wide that there are huge gaps/spaces between the standing capsicums. If there are gaps, the capsicums may topple over while cooking. It is better to use 2 smaller vessels that will hold the capsicums close together, rather than one very wide one.
  2. Pour the blended tomato prepared in Step 5 into the vessel.
  3. Take the capsicums prepared in Step 4 and stuff with rice and meat mixture prepared in Step 3. Fill almost to the top and place the capsicum head on top. Place the capsicum into the dish with the blended tomato. Repeat until all capsicums are filled and placed into the dish.
  4. Cover the dish and turn on the heat to medium and cook for about 20-25 minutes or until the capsicums are done.
  5. Serve the capsicums hot, and don’t forget to get a helping of the saucy tomato! It totally completes the dish!

That’s it! It may look elaborate because I’ve broken down the steps for clarity, but it is truly a really easy dish to prepare when you get down to it. I hope you do give it a try!

Feel free to ask if you have any questions (or if have mentioned an ingredient and then not used it in the directions, like I have done before! :D)

Much love,
Anjum Khan
(Click my name to see all my recipe posts!)

* Update on 10 Apr: Of course I had forgotten to use up the tomato paste when I wrote this down! Typical! Thank you for noticing Dee :*

Disclaimer: I would like to remind you that I like my food on the spicy side, so feel free to adjust/omit the chilies according to your tolerance!

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Filed under Beef, Chicken, Gluten Free, Main Course, Meat, Non Vegetarian, Sauce

Mutton Chops

Chef : Sabeen Murad

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Serves 4

Ingredients:

Mutton chops – 500 gms
Ginger paste – 1 tsp
Garlic paste  1 tsp
Salt – 1/2 tsp
Red chilli powder – 1/4 tsp
Red chilli flakes  - 1/4 tsp
Coriander powder  - 1 tsp
Cumin powder – 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Corn oil – 5 tbsp

Method:

  1. Rub the chops with the ginger and garlic pastes and all the spices. Leave to marinate in the fridge or a cool spot for 6 – 8 hours.
  2. Put the chops and the marinade in a pot, add half a cup of water and leave to cook on a very low flame till the chops are tender.
  3. Evaporate any remaining water so that the masala coats the chops.
  4. Heat the oil in a wide frying pan, add the chops and fry on both sides for three minutes per side.
  5. Serve hot.

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Filed under Advance Preperation Required, Appetizer, Desi, Mutton, Side dish

Puris

Chef : Sabeen Murad

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Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

All purpose flour – 2 cups
Whole wheat flour – 1 cup
Salt – 1/2 tsp
Water to knead

Oil for frying

Method:

  1. Mix the two flours with the salt.
  2. Knead with water till a pliable dough is formed. Dough should neither be too soft nor sticky.
  3. Leave to rest for half an hour.
  4. Heat oil in a deep, heavy bottomed vessel.
  5. Roll out thin rounds of the dough and holding the puri vertical introduce it into the hot oil.
  6. Once it starts to lift up from the base of the vessel, press the sides of the puri lightly with a slotted spoon and pour hot oil on to its surface helping the puri puff.
  7. Turn the puri once the top is golden brown and repeat the same process on the bottom.
  8. Enjoy with aloo ki bhujia and dum ka qeema.

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Filed under Advance Preperation Required, Desi, Vegetarian

Ummul ka meetha

Chef : Sabeen Murad

This dessert is called “Ummul ka Meetha” because it was invented by Ummul :D It is brilliant in its simplicity and ease of preparation and makes for an impressive addition to a dinner party, especially when you don’t have the time to do something fussy or time consuming. I have used oranges in this version but fresh peaches or pineapple are also good.

S

Serves 8-10

Ingredients:

Candi biscuits – 2 packets or 228 gms (These are crisp brown sugar biscuits)
Full fat natural yogurt – 500 gms
Heavy cream – 200 ml (like Haleeb cream or Puck thick cream)
Orange jelly crystals – 1 packet
Sweetened condensed milk – 400 gm tin
Oranges – 10, deseeded and cut into segments

Method:

  1. Pour the yogurt into a square of muslin, bring the fabric together and tie the ends of the cloth to the handle of a cabinet. Put a dish under the yogurt to catch the whey that will drain out of it. When the stream of whey changes to droplets transfer the yogurt to a big bowl.
  2. Prepare the jelly crystals according to package directions and cool to room temperature.
  3. Mix the jelly, yogurt and heavy cream together. Add half a can of condensed milk and taste. If the mixture is sweet enough, stop, otherwise continue adding the condensed milk until you reach the desired level of sweetness.
  4. Line the bottom of a 11 x 13 inch dish with a layer of biscuits. Fill the gaps with the remaining biscuits.
  5. Pour half the yogurt mixture onto the layer of biscuits.
  6. Layer half of the orange segments on top of the yogurt mixture.
  7. Top with the remaining mixture and orange segments.
  8. Once you are done you will have five layers, in this order: biscuits, yogurt mixture, fruit, yogurt mixture, fruit.
  9. Refrigerate till set and serve cold.

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Filed under Creme, Dessert, Egg-less Dessert, Quick & Easy, Vegetarian

Shakshouka

Chef : Sabeen Murad

Shakshouka is essentially eggs poached in a tomato sauce. You can put many different spins on it and it can very easily to taken from leisurely Sunday breakfast to brunch with friends.

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Serves 1 (when increasing portions add one medium tomato per egg and multiply everything else by two)

Ingredients:

Tomato – 2, medium, very ripe, finely diced
Onion – 1, small, finely diced
Garlic clove – 2, fat, minced
Green chilli – 1, small, thinly sliced
Coriander or parsley leaves – few, coarsely chopped
Butter – 1 tbsp, salted (optional)
Oil – 1 tbsp
Salt – 1/4 tsp
Red chilli powder – 1/4 tsp
Turmeric powder – a pinch
Egg – 1, large
Feta cheese – 1 tbsp, crumbled (optional)
Black olives – 1 tbsp, sliced (optional)

Freshly ground black pepper and salt

Method:

  1. Heat oil in a small frying pan, add onions and fry till soft but not caramelised.
  2. Add minced garlic, fry till fragrant.
  3. Add butter and fry onion and garlic mixture for a minute making sure the onion and garlic doesn’t colour. Add the diced tomatoes, green chillies and the spices (except black pepper).
  4. Fry till tomatoes are soft and completely broken down, this should be a liquid mixture. Add olives, taste.
  5. Make a well in the centre of the tomato mixture. Crack the egg into a bowl and tip carefully into the well, sprinkle some salt and pepper on the egg.
  6. Turn the heat to very low and cover the pan for a few seconds to a minute depending on how you like your eggs.
  7. Spoon egg and sauce into a plate, sprinkle with cilantro or parsley and feta cheese. (alternatively serve egg in the pan)
  8. Eat with a paratha or pita bread.

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Filed under Breakfast, Egg, Feta Cheese, Quick & Easy, Vegetarian

Kolapuri Chicken Curry

Chef : Anjum Khan

HOT & SPICY ALERT. This is a superb recipe for spice lovers. So delicious. So aromatic.
It’s a bit of hard work what with all the roasting and grinding for the Kolapuri Dry Chutney and then again for the recipe but I guarantee you it is SO.WORTH.IT.

Kolapuri Chicken Curry

Ingredients:

For the masala
Sesame seeds (til)- 1 tbsp
Black peppercorns – 8
Caraway seed (shahi jeera) – 1 tsp
Cumin seeds – 1 tbsp
Cinnamon stick – 1 inch
Green cardamoms – 4
Black cardamom – 1
Clove – 5
Mace (javitri) – 1 blade
Dried coconut (khopra), 1/4 cup, greated
Bedgi whole dry chillies* – 8-10
Water – as needed, to make a paste while grinding

Other ingredients
Chicken – 1 kgs, skinned and cut to medium pcs.
Canola oil – 4-5 tbsp
Dried red chillies – 3-4
Onions – 3 medium, chopped
Ginger paste – 2 tsp, flattended
Garlic paste – 2 tsp
Water – 1 cup
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Nutmeg powder – 1 pinch
Kolhapuri dry chutney – 1 tsp, heaped
Salt – to taste
Fresh coriander leaves – 1/4 cup, choppep

Equipment Required:
Pressure cooker

* Use the long dried red chili if you don’t have Bedgi chillies

Method:

  1. Heat a pan and dry roast the sesame seeds, peppercorns, caraway seeds, cumin seeds, cinnamon, green cardamoms, black cardamom, cloves, mace, dried coconut and bedgi chillies separately. Allow to cool and grind using some water to a make a paste.
  2. Heat the oil in a pressure cooker, add the red chillies and saute for a few seconds. Remove from heat, set aside and reserve for garnishing.
  3. In the same oil, add the onions and saute until golden brown.
  4. Add the ginger and garlic pastes and saute for a few seconds.
  5. Add the ground paste and cook for three or 5 minutes over medium heat, stirring frequently.
  6. Add the chicken, cook for 5 minutes, mixing to coat the chicken.
  7. Add half a cup of water and cook for another 5 minutes while stirring frequently.
  8. Add turmeric powder, nutmeg powder, Kolhapuri dry chutney and salt to taste.
  9. Seal the cooker and heat for 2 whistles. Once done, turn off flame and allow the the pressure to release.
  10. Once the pressure is released, open the cooker and heat on high flame until the gravy has thickened.
  11. Turn off flame and stir in the coriander leaves
  12. Server hot with parathas or garlic naan (yummy!)

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Filed under Advance Preperation Required, Chicken, Desi, Gluten Free, Lenghty, Main Course, Meat, Non Vegetarian

Kolapuri Dry Chutney

Chef : Anjum Khan

This spicy dry chutney is used in the Kolapuri Chicken Curry but can also be used with chaat, vada pav, etc. It is SO delicious and insanely aromatic.

This recipe will yeild about 1 cup of Kolapuri Dry Chutney.

Ingredients:
Red chilli powder – 1/2 cup
Coriander seeds – 1/2 cup
Cumin seeds – 1/2 tbsp
Sesame seeds (til) – 1/2 tbsp
Black peppercorns – 1/4 tbsp
Cinnamon stick – 1/4th inch
Cloves – 5
Fennel seeds (saunf) – 1/2 tsp
Dry coconut – 1/4 cup, grated
Oil – 1 tbsp
Onion – 1 medium, roughly chopped
Garlic – 5 cloves, sliced
Fresh coriander leaves – 1/2 cup, finely chopped

Method:

  1. Heat a pan and dry roast the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, sesame seeds, black peppercorns, cinnamon, cloves and fennel seeds one by one and set aside to cool.
  2. In the same pan, dry roast the grated coconut until it turns reddish and set aside to cool
  3. In the same pan, next heat the oil, add the onions, garlic and coriander leaves and fry on low heat till well browned and crisp. Set aside to cool.
  4. Once cooled combine all of the above and dry grind to a fine powder.
  5. Mix the ground powder with the chili powder.
  6. Store when completely cool in an air-tight container in the fridge and use as needed.

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Filed under Gluten Free, Ingredient