Thursday, March 29, 2012

Keema Kaleji and Some Heart-to-Heart

So yesterday P was working from home. Which meant I could wiggle my way out of parenthood and take some time off. Without feeling guilty about it. It felt awesome going Downtown by myself without a baby carriage and a diaper bag. Travelling light, my iPod blasting some raunchy Bollywood songs, and a large bubble tea to sip took me to new heights! And it did not even feel dizzy up there. It felt free.

I enjoy being with LMN immensely. But I crave for some downtime. There is always the next thing waiting to be done. If I make the mistake of ignoring it, I see a huge backlog of chores looming large over my little head. The cleaning ladies come and go, but the permanent role as a parent never lets me take a break.

I have great respect for people who have more than one kid. Managing one baby with shared responsibilities with the spouse has me overwhelmed many times! I wish I had more abilities. More patience. And definitely more sleep.

053And some easy-to-cook recipes, which happen on their own while I am playing with the baby, and making moo sounds. Like this mince goat meat with liver recipe. Quite a popular dish in and around Delhi.

Ingredients for Keema Kaleji are:

400 grams mince meat (I always use goat’s)
300 grams liver, cut into bite-size pieces (goat again!)
1 large red onion finely chopped
2 tablespoons garlic paste
2 tablespoons ginger paste
3-4 whole green chillies
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon garam masala powder (I dry grind cardamom, cloves and cinnamon)
2 teaspoons red chilli powder
2 teaspoons turmeric powder
1 small nutmeg, freshly grated
4 tablespoons canola oil
2-3 bay leaves
Pinch of sugar

Its important that you cook liver fresh, without freezing. My butcher lady, Maria cut the whole liver for me, which made life easy.


Start by heating oil in a thick-bottom pan. I used my trusted cast aluminum karhai.

003Sprinkle the pinch of sugar as soon as the oil heats up, add the cumin and the onions and sauté on high till the onions become translucent. Now add the garam masala powder and the bay.


Cook the onions with the garam masala till they turn dark pink, but not brown. You know that particular color while shallow frying onions!

Now add the mince meat and the liver all at once. Crank the heat up and mix the meat well with the onions.


The secret behind a perfect meat recipe is to sear the meat, that not only gives you a beautiful color to your meat but also locks the flavours within the layers. Cook the mince meat and liver on high, mixing all the time. Once its brown, add the ginger-garlic paste, red chilli and turmeric powders, mix, and keep cooking till juices and oil start coming out of the meat.



Add the nutmeg at this point. Mix. Cover and cook till the liver is done. The mince meat would have already been cooked by now.


Season with salt. Throw in the whole green chillies for some special effects. And finally do what you ought to do before finishing any dish – a taste test.


I love having my Keema Kaleji with phulkas or parathas. Tonight we indulged and ate it with lachcha parathas and a bowl of salad.


Hopefully, I can have some more “me time” this weekend too. I have promised to watch a movie in the theatre all by self! That way I think I can pull off playing the role of a mother with a little more style (read without complaining!).

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Rituparna’r Thamma’r Maakha Maach

Some people never let you down when it comes to traditional home cooking. And if its a recipe of your grandmother’s you are proud of, you most certainly will pass it on. And so did one of the readers of my Blog - Rituparna Tah. Her Thamma’s (paternal grandmother in Bengali) Maakha Maach recipe, a quick mishmash of shallow fried Rohu fish.


Ingredients for Rituparna’r Thamma’r Maakha Maach are:

4-5 pieces of paka rui/ large rohu, cleaned and washed
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
6-8 green chillies, broken from the middle
Juice of half a lemon
Mustard oil for shallow frying the fish + to finally drizzle on the fish

067Start by rubbing turmeric and salt on the pieces of fish.


Heat mustard oil in a wok/pan and shallow fry the fish, turning mid way. It takes about 3-4 minutes on each side for the fish to be done.


Remove with a slotted spoon and keep in the dish you will serve the Maakha Maach in. With a fork, gently mash the fish, carefully removing with your fingers as many bones you can. For the ones you cannot, don’t sweat over them much. The people eating this Maakha Maach will figure it all out!


Add the onions, green chillies and lemon juice to the fish. Season with salt. Give it a quick mix again and squirt some raw mustard oil on them.



I ate Rituparna’r Thamma’r Maakha Maach with some plain rice and patla mushurir dal. And I did go for seconds of the Maakha too. Thank you, Thamma!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Homemade Shami Kebabs

I realised this recipe was lying on my Notes section on my Facebook page. So here it is, a recipe that has been handed down to me by my Mum.


Ingredients for Homemade Shami Kebabs are:

005002003400 grams mince meat (beef or goat); please do not use extra lean meat, it’s not good to make kebabs
Half cup chana dal
3-4 cloves of garlic
3-4 black cardamoms (not to be replaced with green!)
15-20 whole black peppercorns
2 cups water

011Pressure cook all the above ingredients up to two whistles and keep. Once it cools down, drain the liquid in a colander and rest for 20-30 minutes, till the meat has no extra liquid.

Now take this mixture in portions and grind in a blender. This mixture should be still coarse between your fingers.

In the meat mixture, add the following:

1 small red onion, finely chopped
3-4 garlic cloves, finely minced
2 inch root ginger, finely minced
Handful of coriander leaves, finely chopped
A few green chilies, finely chopped (reduce the number if kids are eating)
1 large egg (two if small)
1 teaspoon red chili powder
2-3 tablespoons Sattu (optional)

028Mix everything together with your hands. Almost pounding the meat and the raw ingredients together. Make small ping-pong size balls with the meat mixture, flatten each between the palms of your hand and keep aside.

031032Heat a pan until very hot; add canola/vegetable/mustard oil until smoking. Slide in each kebab patty into the oil. Since the kebabs have egg in it, the oil will foam up.

036001Let the kebabs turn golden brown on each side, give at least 2-3 minutes on high flame on each side before you remove the kebabs. Drain excess oil on paper towels.

003Serve with salad and green chutney.