Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Ghugni ~ Easy Snack Recipe

Ghugni is a popular evening snack of Eastern India. The dried peas or chickpeas are cooked and then it is made more flavorful and tasty by adding many spice powders. The spiciness is well balanced by the addition of tamarind and sugar. It is finally garnished with chopped onions, cilantro and many other spice powders to make it more tasty.

I was introduced to this snack few months back. I had soaked peas waiting to be used and hence started looking for chaat recipes. I stumbled upon this recipe . I made few additions to the original recipe and gave it a try. I really liked it a lot and from then on I have made it so many times. It has become our new favorite snack and sometimes make it for our dinner too. Do give it a try, if you are looking for a yummy snack for a cold winter evening. I hope you all will enjoy as much as we do :-) 

  • Dried Peas - 3/4 cup
  • Potato, small sized - 1 (optional)
  • Onion, medium sized - 1
  • Ginger - garlic paste - 1 tsp
  • Cinnamon - 1-2 inch
  • Bay leaf - 1
  • Tamarind pulp - 1 Tbsp
  • Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
  • Cumin powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Red Chilli powder - To taste
  • Garam masala - 1/4 tsp
  • Sugar - 1/2 tsp
  • Oil - 1-2 tbsp
  • Salt - To taste
For Garnish:
  • Roasted Cumin powder
  • Black salt
  • Chaat Masala
  • Cilantro (coriander leaves)
  • Chopped Onion
  • Sev
  • Papdi


Wash the dried peas and soak them in fresh water for 6-8 hours. 

Then discard the water and wash them 1-2 times. Now transfer the peas to a cooker along with the washed potato. Add water and salt. Cook it for a whistle and turn off the heat. The peas should be cooked but not mushy (mine cooked a little more than I expected).

While the peas were cooking, chop the onions and set it aside. Then heat oil in a big pot. Once hot, add cinnamon and bay leaf. After few seconds, add in the chopped onions and fry until they slightly change color to golden brown. 

Then add ginger garlic paste and continue to fry until the raw smell goes away.

Now lower the heat and add red chilli powder, cumin powder and turmeric powder. Fry for few seconds and add cooked peas along with water in which it was cooked. Mix well and add chopped boiled potato, tamarind pulp, salt and sugar. Let this cook on medium- low heat for 5-6 minutes. Finally add in garam masala and taste the mixture. Add more spice powder or tamarind pulp, if desired. The final consistency of the pea mixture should be medium thick (not too thick or not too watery). When everything comes together, turn off the heat.

Ghugni is ready!!

For Serving: Take the desired amount of pea mixture in a serving bowl. Then sprinkle little bit of chaat masala, black salt, roasted cumin powder. Then finally top it off with chopped onion, cilantro, sev and papdi (you can add or omit any of the above. This is how I like it). Serve it immediately.
Above measurement serves two people generously. If serving as an appetizer then it can stretch to about four people.

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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Rice Krispies Chivda / Chooda

Rice Krispies Chivda is a recent try in my kitchen. The recipe was given to me by a dear friend S. Few days back I ate this snack at her place. I liked it very much and hence asked her the recipe. She gave me a box of homemade chivda along with a hand written recipe. It was so nice of her to do that. The chivda was so tasty that I finished eating it within two days. 

This Chivda is very easy to put together. It is just a three step process - Frying the nuts in tempering, adding spice powder and then finally rice krispies. There is no deep frying involved and much healthier than the store bought ones. This can be served along with your evening tea /coffee or as a 'after school snack' for your kids. Give this a try and let me know how you liked it.


  • Rice Krispies Cereal - 3 1/2 cups*
  • Peanuts, whole - 1/4 cup
  • Cashew nut, broken - 1/4 cup
  • Raisins - 1/4 cup
  • Oil - 2 Tbsp
  • Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
  • Curry leaves - 1 big sprig
  • Sugar - 1 tsp
  • Salt - To taste
Spice Powder:
  • Cumin powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Coriander powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Red chilli powder - To taste
  • Garam masala - 1/2 tsp
  • Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
  • Amchur powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Asafoetida (hing) - 1/8 tsp
*The recipe called for 3 cups of cereal and 1/2 cup of sev. Since I didn't have sev on hand, I just increased the amount of cereal to 3 1/2 cups. You can also substitute other cereal like corn flakes, plain cheerios etc.


Heat oil in a big pan. Once hot, add mustard seeds. After it pops, add peanuts, curry leaves and cashew nuts. Once it gets slightly toasted, add in the raisins. Once they turn golden brown, lower the heat to minimum (this is necessary as high heat can burn the spices and they can taste bitter).

Now add asafoetida, turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, garam masala, amchur powder, sugar and salt. Mix well. Turn off the heat.

Now add the rice krispies and toss them gently until everything comes together. 

Rice Krispies Chivda is ready!

Once they cool, transfer into an air tight container.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Tomato Soup

My search for vegetarian soups has started as it is getting cold in my part of the world. I book marked few recipes and then it strikes me that I have not posted the recipe of good old tomato soup! This is a recipe which I had noted down from a book long time back. I used to prepare this for my father who would always encourage me to try new recipes. It had been a long time since I made this soup. So thought of making it as I had many ripe tomatoes. Do try making this simple soup and enjoy!


  • Ripe Tomatoes, medium sized - 4
  • Onion, medium sized - 1
  • Butter - 1 Tbsp
  • Clove - 1
  • Pepper powder - To taste
  • Sugar - To taste
  • Red Chilli powder - To taste
  • Tomato Ketchup - 1 tsp
  • Heavy Cream - 1-2 Tbsp
  • Salt- To taste


Chop the onion and tomato (discard the seeds of the tomato).

Now in a pan, heat butter. Then add clove and chopped onion. Fry it on a medium flame until the onion turns slight brown.

Then add in chopped tomato and fry until it turns mushy.

Then add little water and bring it to a boil. Let it cook for 2-3 minutes and then turn off the heat.

Now allow this mixture to cool slightly and then puree it (you can remove the clove if you don't like it). Once done transfer it to the same pot. Add water to get desired consistency. Then add red chilli powder, salt, sugar, pepper powder and tomato ketchup. Mix and bring it to a boil.

Once done, turn off the heat and add cream. Mix well. 
Tomato Soup is ready!

Serve it hot or warm garnished with croutons. Above measurement serves two people.

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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Sweet Potato & Black Bean Quesadilla

Sweet Potatoes and Black beans are match made in heaven. I came to know about this when I tried making a sweet potato taco few months ago. After that I tried making soup and then wanted to try it in a quesadilla. The inspiration for this dish comes from here. Since the recipe calls for Chorizo, I substituted black beans to make it vegetarian. It turned out quite amazing and we enjoyed it with  Pico de gallo. Hence I made it again so that I can share the recipe with you all. 

You can serve this as an evening snack to your kids or it also makes a good appetizer for get together. Do try making it and I hope you all will enjoy it. 

  • Flour tortillas, large sized - 4
  • Sweet Potato, medium sized - 1
  • Onion, medium sized- 1/2
  • Black beans, cooked / canned - 1/2 cup
  • Monterey Jack Cheese, grated* - 1 1/2 - 2 cups
  • Chilli powder - To taste
  • Cumin powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Cilantro (coriander leaves) - 3-4 sprigs
  • Oil - 2-3 tsp and extra for pan frying
 *Use any cheese of your choice.


Making the Filling:
Wash and peel the sweet potato. Then cut it into 1/2 inch cubes.

Cook the sweet potato cubes in hot salted water (cook until there is no resistance when a fork is inserted in the sweet potato. It should still hold its shape very well).

Then drain the water completely and set it aside.

Now in a wide pan heat oil. Once hot add chopped onion and fry until it just starts to change color.

Then add in the cooked sweet potato cubes and fry further until little color appears on sweet potato.

Then add in  Black beans, salt, chilli powder and cumin powder.

Mix well and cook for a minute or two. Then finally add chopped cilantro and turn off the heat. Mix well and allow it to cool. Filling is ready.

Assembling and Pan Frying:

When you are ready to make the quesadillas, preheat a skillet over medium high heat and brush one side of the tortilla with some oil and place it oiled side down ( Tortillas were freshly made by me). 

Sprinkle some cheese on one half of the tortilla.

 Then top that with some of the prepared sweet potato - black bean mixture. 

Sprinkle a bit more cheese.

Fold it in half. 

Continue with the rest of the tortillas. Once done fry them on a preheated skillet (I used a grill pan) until they turn crispy and golden brown on both sides.

Once done, transfer it on a plate. Cut each of the tortilla into 2-3 pieces using a knife or pizza cutter. Sweet Potato & Black Bean Quesadilla is ready!!

Serve it immediately along with Guacamole or Pico de gallo. Above measurement serves 3-4 people.

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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Gobi Pepper Fry

Gobi Pepper Fry is an awesome deep fried cauliflower dish. I ate this yummy dish at a Dhaba in my India trip last year. This was my husband's favorite dish during his college days. He asked me to recreate it at home and hence I tried my hands on it. It turned out pretty good with an awesome flavor induced by peppercorns. Cauliflower is one vegetable I enjoy deep fried. In this recipe the cauliflower florets are dipped in batter and then deep fried until crispy. It is then tossed in fried onion and garlic mixture along with soy sauce and freshly ground peppercorns. 

Do try making this and enjoy.

  • Cauliflower Florets, small sized - 2 cups, heaping
  • Oil - 3 tsp + for deep frying
  • Garlic pods, big sized - 4-5
  • Onion, medium sized- 1/2
  • Whole Peppercorns - 1 tsp (adjust accordingly)
  • Soy sauce- 1 Tbsp
  • Sugar - 1/2 tsp
  • Salt- To taste
For Batter:
  • All Purpose Flour (Maida)- 1/4 cup
  • Corn Flour- 1/4 cup
  • Ginger- Garlic paste, freshly made - 1- 1 1/2 tsp
  • Salt- To taste


Wash the cauliflower and pat it dry. Then cut it into small florets.

Chop the onion and garlic. Set it aside.

Then prepare the batter. Take all purpose flour, corn flour, ginger- garlic paste and salt in a mixing bowl. Add water in small amounts to make a thick batter.
Meanwhile keep the oil for heating on medium- high heat.
While the oil is getting heated, add the cauliflower florets into the batter and mix it gently until all the pieces get a uniform coating. 

Now deep fry these battered pieces in batches until it turns golden brown on both sides. Once done drain them on a paper towel to drain excess oil. 

Continue deep frying with the rest of the cauliflower florets.
Then take a wide bottomed pan and heat oil in it. Then add garlic slices and chopped onions. Start frying it on medium flame. Sprinkle little salt at this point.

Once the onion turns slight brown, add the soy sauce and mix well.

Then finally add in sugar, freshly ground peppercorns and deep fried cauliflower florets. Mix well until everything comes together. Then turn off the heat.

Gobi Pepper Fry is ready!

Serve it hot as it is or along with noodles or fried rice. Above measurement serves two people.

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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Takka Kadi (Buttermilk Soup)

Takka Kadi is a Konkani dish made using buttermilk. The sour buttermilk is seasoned with aromatic spices and other ingredients roasted in ghee and then flavored with cilantro. This tastes somewhat similar to Phannna Taak. You can drink as it is or pair it with rice and a spicy curry. This dish is very simple and requires only few basic ingredients. It takes only 5-10 minutes of your time and its healthy too! Do try and let me know how it turns out for you.

I adapted this recipe from a Konkani cook book written by Jaya V Shenoy.

  • Sour Buttermilk* - 1 cup
  • Water - 3/4 cup
  • Melted Ghee (clarified butter) - 2-3 tsp
  • Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
  • Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
  • Green chilli, slit lengthwise - 2-3
  • Curry leaves - Few
  • Ginger, grated - 1/2 tsp
  • Cilantro (coriander leaves),chopped - 3-4 sprigs
  • Salt - To taste
*I just mixed 1/2 cup of curd with 1/2 cup of water to make my buttermilk.


Chop cilantro and green chilli. Grate ginger and set them aside.

Now in a sauce pan heat ghee. Once hot, add in the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, green chilli, curry leaves and ginger. 

Fry until fragrant and then add water and salt. Once it comes to a rolling boil, add cilantro and turn off the heat.

Finally add the buttermilk and mix. 

Takka Kadi is ready!!

Serve it immediately as it is or along with rice and a spicy curry. Above measurement serves 2-3 people.

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