Friday, March 26, 2010

Kobbari Bhakshalu (Wheat flour tortillas stuffed with sweet filling)

This is a sweet dish synonymous with Bobbatlu, a traditional stuffed chapathi, but the fillings for stuffing are slightly different. I saw this simple recipe on Maa TV and tried it out. It truly is delllicious!!

Maida flour - 2 cups
Dry coconut powder - 1 cup
Sugar - 1 cup
Sesame seeds - 1/2 cup
Cashew powder - 1 tbsp
Elaichi - 3

1. In a bowl mix Maida with 1 tsp oil and water as needed, and knead into a soft dough.
2. Dry roast sesame seeds (raw is fine too). Make a powder of sesame seeds, cashews and elaichi. To this add coconut powder and sugar and mix.
3. Add about 1/4 cup milk to this mixture and mix well. Make small round balls and keep aside.
4. Roll the maida dough into small round patties. Flatten them a bit and place the ball in the middle and cover all sides with the dough. Roll the dough flat into a round like a chapathi.
5. Heat a tava and fry or cook them on medium heat while applying ghee on both sides.
Store in air-tight container or preferably, in the refrigerator.


An Andhra speciality and favorite among kids and adults likewise, Janthikalu or Murukulu stand out to be the most sought after 'pindi vantalu'. Needless to say, you can keep on munching janthikalu until you run out of them! I tried various varieties of Janthikalu with Rice flour and Besan in different propertions. My favorite of them all is Janthikalu made with Rice flour and Urad dal. I prepared them last weekend and they came out very well. My daughter loves them. She's in preschool and as she is munching on them she infers alphabet shapes out of the pieces.


Rice flour - 4 cups
Urad dal - 1 cup
Ajwain -1/2 tsp
Sesame seeds - 1 tbsp
Chilli powder - 1 tsp
Butter - 1 tbsp
Salt as needed
Oil for frying


1. Take a pan, dry roast urad dal in medium heat until it slightly changes color. Let it cool and grind to a powder.
2. In a bowl mix rice flour, urad dal flour, ajwain, sesame seeds, salt, chilli powder, butter and mix. Add water as needed and knead into a soft dough.
3. Heat oil in a pan for frying. Take muruku press, set the disc for star-shape (or any desired shape), put dough into it. When oil is hot enough, press the top of muruku press and drop into hot oil in circular shape to make concentric circles.
4. Fry both sides till golden brown, approximately for 5 min and remove. Repeat till dough is used.
5. Let them cool and store in air-tight container.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Besan Capsicum Fry

I like capsicum in general. Capsicum when cooked with besan gives it a great taste and is one of my favorites! I learnt this from our Gujarati nanny. Here you go..

Capsicum or Green Bell Peppers - 1
Red Bell Peppers -1
Yellow Bell Peppers - 1
Besan or Chick-pea Flour - 1 cup
Groundnuts - 1/2 cup
Sesame seeds - 2 tsp (optional)
Cumin seeds - 1/4 tsp
Chilli powder - 1 tsp
Oil for frying

1. Cut capsicum into small pieces. You can mix green, red and yellow bell peppers to render a colorful look.
2. Dry roast peanuts and sesame seeds together. Let the mixture cool down and grind to a coarse powder
3. Dry roast besan flour for 4 - 5 min until a nice aroma emanates.
4. Put pan on medium heat and pour oil in it. Add cumin, capsicum pieces and fry until pieces turn soft.
5. Now add besan powder, peanuts and sesame powder mix and fry.
6. Add salt and chilli powder and fry. Turn off stove in about 5 min.

Garnish with coriander. Tastes great with rotis! Can be served with rice also.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Chilli Pepper Chicken

I love Chinese food, of course, when it is properly cooked. Back in my school days at the University of Illinois, Chicago, there was a small chinese restaurant in our campus that served this dish. The cook was supposedly popular and hosted TV shows on Chinese cooking. No, he did not share the recipe with me because I never asked him! With some experimenting and tips from Chinese cooking sites I created this on my own. It came out somewhat comparable to the dish at the restaurant. It is my most favorite dry chinese dish, also a super-hit at home and both me and my husband love it!

Chicken - Boneless - 1 lb
Corn starch - 2 tbsp
Ginger - minced
Garlic - minced
Soy Sauce - 2 tsp
Rice Vinegar - 2 tsp
Sesame oil - 1 tsp
Dry red chillies - a fistful
Spring onions - 1/2 cup
Pepper - 1/4 tsp
Egg (optional)

1. Cut chicken into thin bite-sized pieces. Wash and drain well. Mix chicken pieces with salt, pepper and corn starch powder. You can add egg to this mixture. This will result in hard and crispier chicken pieces, but I prefer soft pieces so I don't add egg.
2. Heat oil in a wok over high heat until very hot. It should be starting to smoke fumes. Then add the chicken mix and keep stirring for few minutes until the chicken is well cooked. Remove the chicken and set aside.
3. In the same wok add the minced ginger and garlic pieces and let fry for a few seconds. Remove and keep aside.
4. Add 1 tsp oil, dry red chillies (whole or crushed) and spring onions chopped. Stir for about half a minute, remove and keep aside.
5. While the wok is still over high heat mix all the cooked ingredients (chicken, ginger, garlic, dry red chillies, spring onions) and add soya sauce, vinegar and stir well for a couple of minutes. Now add the sesame oil. It gives a nice pungent aroma. Stir for few seconds and turn off the stove.

Remove into a bowl and serve hot with white rice.