Every once in a while, mostly on a Sunday, I make an elaborate lunch at home. The weekday meals are all made by my mum-in-law, a delicious vegetarian affair. So on Sundays, I try to give her a break and make something myself. A lot of times my folks have to eat the experimentation – uncooked pasta, overcooked chicken , too tangy salad etc. But sometimes, something like this gets created and I can’t wait to put it up here and share it with you all.
This time it is Pepper Pan-Grilled Chicken over Buttery Baked Rice and Tomato Salsa. This technique of baked rice was shown to me by our European business associate, they always bake rice and don’t use any pressure cooker. You can very well cook rice in the pressure cooker and lightly season it.
All the pans that we use at home currently are from Khlos. Wonderfully built and sturdy and yet non-stick, that our oil consumption has drastically reduced.And they look so pretty and are still very affordable.
Buttery Baked Rice
- 200 gram long grained rice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 25 gram butter
- 400 ml boiling water
- Grease a 1.1 capacity ovenproof dish or casserole.
- Put the rice in the dish and stir int he salt until well mixed. Dot with butter.
- Pour over the boiling water. Cover and bake at 180C for 30 minutes until the water has been absorbed and rice is tender.
Pepper and Olive Oil Tender Chicken breasts
- 3-4 chicken breasts
- 1 tablespoon olive oil + 1 tablespoon softened butter
- 2-3 tablespoon coarsely crushed pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- chilli flakes
- butter for pan-grilling the chicken and for the sauce
- Lightly pound the washed chicken breasts with a chicken rolling pin. Rub it with the mixture of olive oil + butter+ salt+ pepper + chilli flakes.
- Let it sit for 20 minutes.
- Heat a thick bottommed pan and melt 1-2 tablespoon of butter. I have used Khlos grill pan to brown the chicken and give the pepper a crackling feel.
- Once the chicken breasts are browned on both sides, transfer them and the butter from the pan into an ovenproof dish. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180C for 10 minutes so that the chicken gets cooked till the centre.
- Remove from heat and reserve the juices and butter.
- 2 cups finely chopped tomatoes (about 4 tomatoes)
- 1 teaspoon chilli flakes
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 4 tablespoon chopped coriander
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon finely chopped green chillies
- about 3/4 teaspoon salt
- Mix all the above ingredients of the salsa and adjust the salt as per taste.
- Slice the chicken and place it on a bed of rice with salsa on the side. Garnish with some mint/basil leaves.
A few years back, cooking classes were a rage among all my mom’s friends. And they found one Mrs. Kapoor who taught all North Indian curries, rice preparations, koftas, Indian chineese, soups, cakes etc. I had attended one cake workshop with her, my first one, long time back. And then my sister-in-law attended a few of her classes and this is her creation.
The list of ingredients is long, but once you get it all together it is very simple. Just mix it all, fry and put it in the curry.
In Indian cooking, unlike baking, a few ingredients and measures can be adjusted. Feel free to do so if you don’t have any particular thing in your house. Or you can replace aamchur powder with say mint powder or substitute with lemon juice altogether. Feel comfortable.
My friends have come up with a specially coated range of stoneware – frying pan and kadhais called the Khlos Life. Its beautiful and we have been using it even for all our daily cooking since we got it. You can check them out on Amazon.
Palak and Cheese Kofta in Curry
What you will need:
For the koftas outer covering –
- 3 potatoes, boiled and mashed
- 1 teaspoon ginger- chilli paste
- 2 tablespoon corn flour
- 1 teaspoon aamchoor powder
- salt to taste, 1/2 teaspoon or so
For the kofta filling –
- 1 bunch palak (boiled, squeezed and chopped finely)
- 3 cubes cheese grated
- 1 teaspoon ginger chilli paste
- 1/2 onion finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic paste
- salt to taste , about 1/2 teaspoon
- 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
- few drops of lemon juice
For making tadka for the gravy –
- 2 tablespoon butter
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 teaspoon garlic paste
- 1 teaspoon ajwain
For the gravy –
- 4 tomatoes pureed without skins
- 1/4 cup curd
- 2 teaspoon besan
- 3 tablespoon kaju powder
- 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
- 1/2 teaspoon jeera powder
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- salt to taste, about 1/2 – 1 teaspoon
- 1/4 cup coriander chopped
- pinch of orange red color (optional)
What to do :
- Mix all ingredients for the kofta outer covering and knead it like a soft dough. keep it aside.
- Mix all ingredients of the kofta filling and check for seasoning.
- Make small balls of the filling and stuff them into disks of the outer covering and seal well. You will get about 10-12 koftas.
- Heat some oil in a kadhai, and fry the koftas on medium heat. Drain on kitchen paper.
- To make the gravy, I used the Khlos Deep kadhai. Heat the 2 tablespoon of butter, add the ajwain, onion and garlic and saute for minutes.
- In a mixer or a food processor, churn everything required for the gravy.
- Pour it over the tadka in the kadhai and cook it on medium heat for 5-6 minutes till it starts to thicken.
- Put the koftas in the curry just before serving. Serve piping hot with some chapatis or rice.
- 1 bunch of palak is roughly 3/4 cup when boiled and chopped.
- I have used fresh ginger and fresh chilli paste. And packaged ready garlic paste. You can use all fresh or all packaged. Adjust the salt accordingly.
- If you wish, add more water to the curry and keep it thinner for rice.