Recipes R Simple

Quick Thai Noodles with Shrimp

Quick Thai Noodles is my ‘go to’ Breakfast on late weekend mornings.  For those who like Asian for breakfast, you must give this a go. It makes a super easy weeknight dinner as well.

I am so into the Red Rice Noodles that are available everywhere these days. The distinct bite associated with brown or red rice is very pleasing. More pasta-like. And great for those who like to go gluten-free.  Check out my video link below, or click to go to the recipe page.

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Kothu Parotta | ‘Torn Paratha’ Stir-Fry

Kothu Parotta is a popular Street snack, in parts of South India and Srilanka. ‘Kothu’ means minced or chopped. This is a stir-fry, made with savory scrambled egg and chopped up / torn pieces of parotta (paratha) which is the popular layered and fried flatbread

You can hear the signature clacking noise in the evenings near the Kothu parotta stalls as the vendors chop up the ingredients together on a hot cast iron griddle, using a flat metal spatula.

People as they cue up eagerly to buy the hot and savory snack, love to see the process, which varies from vendor to vendor. Some add cooked chicken to the mix, but I much prefer the one with egg.

These days, it is easy to buy parotta almost anywhere. Next time, reserve a few to make this quick and yummy snack in no time at all.  It may be served with any simple dal or chicken curry or ‘ quick dalcha’.

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Chicken Rendang | Dry Caramelized Coconut Chicken Curry

If you are in the mood for some exotic and rich flavors from South East Asia, do try my Chicken Rendang Recipe. 

Rendang is a reduced, thickened meat stew, cooked in coconut milk and spices. Popular in Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore, you can find unique versions in the different territories.

The distinctness in flavors of each region is attributed to the unique rempah (spice paste) that is used. The different ingredients that go into the rempah, create varied flavors for this dish with a long history.

One thing is common.  The use of the freshest ingredients, which include fresh turmeric root, ginger, and galangal. Lemongrass, garlic, shallots, kaffir lime leaves and fresh along with dried chilies are used. Spice powders are absent or seldom used in this dish. Coconut milk and/or roasted coconut paste (kerisik) is also used.

The trademark thick and fiber-rich gravy coats the meat pieces, which are slow-cooked until very tender.  A wide wok or skillet is preferred to a deep pot or cooker. Constant stirring is required for a process that can be time-consuming.

A skillful hand is required to make a good rendang. You need to roast the coconut precisely, in order to create a good kerisik. And constant checking and stirring over low heat to ensure the gravy nor the meat is sticking to the pan. Even the slightest scorching os this spice paste can ruin the flavor. You also need some practice, to keep the thick coconut milk from curdling. Maintenance of low heat is of utmost importance.

As the gravy dries up and thickens and braises the meat in the process, the brilliantly tender meat is richly flavored with the rempah ingredients. Absolutely delicious, with steamed rice or Nasi Kunyit (Turmeric Rice), Ketupat (Steamed Pressed rice) or as an addition to Nasi Padang (Miniature banquet consisting of rice with many optional side dishes).

Rendang is believed to have originated in West Sumatra, Indonesia. It can be cooked with Buffalo meat, Beef or Chicken.

 

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Fried Prawn Starter | Kerala Style

 

Here is a Fried Prawn Starter recipe from the houseboats and backwater resorts of Kerala. It’s fast, simple and fun to make! It’s delightful to be served as starters at parties or on your friendly game night.

They can of course, also be served as a side with your meal. The prawns are peeled and deveined but the tail and sometimes head is left intact for presentation purpose. Don’t forget the lime/lemon wedge. A squeeze, while serving helps to make the flavors pop in your mouth!

I do love prawns and especially fried prawns. I have a few other versions for you to check out as well. Kerala Fried Prawns,  Tasty Coconut Shrimp Fry Prawn Tikka,

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Chicken Karahi – Dhaba Style

 

Chicken Karahi – Dhaba Style.  What’s not to love about Super Quick Punjabi Khaana?

A Punjabi dhaba is a roadside eatery in parts of India and Pakistan that served Punjabi food.  Usually found on highways and at truck stops on the linkways between cities, towns, and villages.

They were in fact first opened to feed the truckers on their long-distance trips. The truckers were mostly Punjabi and hence was born this form of Punjabi authentic-fast food, offering wholesome home-style meals quickly at any hour of the day.

No longer a pit stop for the truckies, Punjabi Dhabas’s are now frequented and enjoyed by one and all, making this apart of the Punjabi social as well as food culture!

This Wok-tossed chicken can be prepared super fast and comes in handy when you are pressed for time. Serve with chapatis, flatbreads… Check out the  quick video!

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Varutharacha Kadala Curry | Black Chickpeas Curry with Ground Roasted Coconut

Varutharacha Kadala Curry is the authentic preparation of Black Chickpeas in a spiced, roasted coconut curry. The inviting aroma of the grated coconut, being fried with the simple spices lets everyone know what we are having for breakfast! Puttu and Kadala is a very popular breakfast item in Kerala and my husband loves it.

Roasting the grated coconut requires patience. You just can not step away from the stove during the 10 minutes of stir-frying

Earlier I had shared the recipe for a Simple Kadala Curry, which does not use the method of frying the coconut with patience and care. You can use that recipe on your rushed days. However, the patience and love that goes into this homely preparation yields a result that is well worth the extra effort!

Check out the stepwise pictures or the video for more detail.

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Mutton Kabsa | Arabian Rice with Mutton/Lamb

Mutton Kabsa and Memories

I love the recipes with a good sprinkling of nostalgia associated with them. This Mutton Kabsa for instance… It’s aroma, its unique flavor, it always takes me back to my beautiful life in Saudi Arabia. My birthplace. Kabsa is a Saudi staple and is made with Mutton, Chicken or even Prawns.  The simple and humble dish is prepared quite easily, with all the Saudi homes having their own trademark spice-blend to enhance that irresistible, comforting aroma and flavor.  Here, I am sharing an authentic preparation of Mutton Kabsa. Prime Indian Mutton (Goat meat) is best for Kabsa.

My mom made this Kabsa so perfectly!! I would be so thrilled when I walked in the door after school and got that distinct whiff of Kabsa Spice!!

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Dahi Aloo Chana Chaat | Chickpeas and Potato Yoghurt Salad

Dahi Aloo Chana Chaat is another delicious and extra quick starter/salad, that can enhance any meal and dinner menu. Think of it as the Indian version of the Western potato salad, with the added goodness of chickpeas and crunchiness is supplied by the red onion and the tasty, crispy Aloo Bhujia.

Aloo Bhujia is crispy, tangy and spicy Potato Noodles, often available at your local Indian Grocers. I will add the link to the recipe for Homemade Aloo Bhujia soon.

Dahi Aloo Chana Chaat can be served as a light snack on its own or as a salad/ side dish along with the main meal. I love all types of Chaats. So refreshing and fulfilling. This chaat item makes a good side dish during Ramadan as well, where light refreshing starters are often needed.

 

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Thalassery Beef Biriyani | Malabar Biriyani

Thalassery Beef Biriyani has been a long requested recipe here on RAS. Those of you who frequently visit for my Malabar style recipes, I hope you will enjoy my recipe for a delicious Beef Biriyani.

Thalassery is truly a place represented by its hospitable locals, who are always happy to feed a hungry soul… The varieties of delicious Arab and Mughal influenced foods, as well as the vast array of sweet and savory snacks, makes any trip to this place undeniably ‘Unforgettable’!

Although famous for its endless list of tea time snacks, the Thalassery Biriyani is, without doubt, the most famous dish from the region.

Thalassery Biriyani is a cultural embodiment and is reminiscent of foreign influences in Malabar. It is a by-product of the Mughal-Arab cultural influence in North Kerala due to the trade that lasted for centuries before the 1900s and the emigration to the Middle East of locals from the 1970s onwards.

So here is my special recipe for Thalassery Beef Biriyani. I hope you will make it and send me a pic! This post has taken forever with getting all the ingredient measures to perfection. If you follow my recipe, I guarantee you success.

Buffalo meat is often used in this recipe, and I believe it tastes so much better. In fact, many delicious curries and fries that one mistakes to be beef throughout Kerala is actually Buffalo meat.

Another key ingredient in Thalassery Biriyani is the variety of fragrant rice used. Although Basmati is famous in Biriyani, Thalassery prides itself in using the indispensable Wayanadan Kaima/ Jeerakasala rice to make this authentic Biriyani. It is a very short delicate grain with a lovely fragrance that permeates throughout the popular rice dish. Since good quality Kaima rice is not always available, you may use Basmati if you can not find it.

The cooked rice and meat is layered in a sealed pot, in the ‘Dum’ method of sealed cooking which prevents any steam from escaping and enforces the flavors to marry well with each other.  The aroma throughout the house when the Dum (pronounced ‘DHuM’) is cut open is quite captivating.

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Punjabi Chole Bhature | Chickpeas with Fried Leavened Bread

 

Punjabi Chole Bhature – the ever popular street food, everyday food, snack and favorite of the young and old alike!  Chole(Cholay) is the Punjabi name of this curry made of chickpeas. It is also known in other regions as Chana Masala. Chana Masala and Chole are basically the same curried dish of chickpeas. It may be semi dry or have more gravy and the recipe varies from home to home and Dhaba to Dhaba (Punjabi roadside food stall)!

Bhature, (Bhatoora), is a soft, fluffy deep-fried leavened bread. It is similar to Puri which is its unleavened counterpart. Bhature is most often served with Chole, hence the name of the meal – ‘Chole Bhature’.

Chole is extremely simple to make. This easy recipe delivers a fast and so very yummy, semi dry gravy of chickpeas. Check out the stepwise pictures (slideshow) below.  The Bhature is quite simple to make as well (although it may require a little practice). I often make the chole on its own to serve along with salads too.

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