Polenta Upma

Upma is one of the most common breakfast preferences in the Indian kitchen. It is dearly loved and made with multiple variations across India. One problem that it is commonly made with Suji or Semolina which is highly processed.

I have earlier tried to make Upma with Bulgar and Cracked Wheat which came out as a great option to satisfy the craving for Upma. In this version, I am using Polenta or Cornmeal as my base and this is so close or exact to how traditional Upma tastes like without adding Semolina.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup polenta
  • 8-10 curry leaves
  • 2 dry whole red chilies; broken halves
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/3 cup unsalted peanuts
  • 1 medium white onion; finely chopped
  • 1 small tomato; finely chopped
  • 1 cup frozen peas; thawed
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt (adjust to taste)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup cilantro; finely chopped
  • 1 serrano pepper; chopped (optional)

Preparation

1. Take a medium saucepan and place it on medium heat. Dry roast polenta for 5-6 minutes with continuous stirring. The polenta is done once the color darkens to golden yellow. Once done, keep aside.
2. Take another medium saucepan and place it on medium heat.
3. Dry roast curry leaves, mustard seeds, peanuts, and the split whole red chili peppers. Stir regularly and roast for 3-5 mins.
4. Add onions to the mix and stir. Add tbsp water if onions are sticking to the pan. Saute for at least 5 mins or when onions turn translucent.
5. Add peas to the mix and stir well. Saute for another 3 mins.
6. Add the chopped tomatoes and salt. Mix well. Saute the mix until the tomatoes soften. This normally takes 6-8 mins.
7. Add the dry roasted polenta and combine all the ingredients well.
8. Add 3 1/2 cups of water and lemon juice to the mix. Mix well.
9. Keep stirring the mix until the polenta absorbs the water. You may observe boil in the polenta mix. Lower the heat and keep stirring to semi-soft consistency.
10. Garnish with chopped green chilis and cilantro.

Lavash Samosa Roll

We all love Samosas. I prepared and posted earlier on how to prepare traditional samosas. I wish we all had the time to prepare samosas to enjoy this scrumptious appetizer. I recently came across and prepared these awesome Avacado Rolls from the forksoverknives.com website and thought to try and prepare the samosa mix and bake them.

Ingredients

– 1 medium white onion; finely chopped
– 2/3 Cups Frozen Peas; thawed
– 5 medium potatoes; boiled, cooled, and crushed
– 1 Sereno pepper (optional); finely chopped
– 1/4 Cup Cilantro; finely chopped
– 1 tbsp grated ginger
– 1/4 tsp Asafoetida
– 1/4 tsp Red chili powder
– 1/4 tsp Garam masala
– 1/2 tsp sea salt (adjust to taste)
– 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
– 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
– 2 tbsp Coriander Powder
– 1 tsp Amchur (Dried Mango Powder)

Preparation

1. Take a medium sauce pan and place on medium heat. Dry roast the cumin seeds with asafoetida for 2 mins.
2. Add the onions to the saucepan. If onions stick to the pan, add one tbsp water. Sauté onions and stir until translucent and soft.
3. Add thawed peas to the mix. Sauté for 2 mins.
4. Add boiled/crushed potatoes.
5. Add turmeric, coriander powder, garam masala, red chili powder, amchur, and salt. Mix well.
6. Add ginger, cilantro, sereno pepper(optional)
7. Keep stirring the mix for 2 mins.
8. Switch off the heat and let the mix cool down.
9. When you are ready to prepare the rolls, preheat oven at 375 degrees F.
10. On chopping board or on flat surface lay lavash bread. Take a spoon full of potato mix, start spreading the mix with a spoon or tool of your choice on the lavash bread to create a thin layer of the mix(you may need to take 4-5 times potato mix to cover lavash bread).
11. With both hands start rolling lavash bread, with the mix inside, as tight of a roll as possible.
12. Take a sharp knife or a bread knife, and cut the big lavash roll into 1″-1.5″ small rolls.
13. On a baking tray, lay parchment paper and place the cut lavash samosa rolls flat.
14. Once the oven is ready, keep the baking tray inside the oven.
15. Flip the samosa rolls after 15 mins (or browning/crisping of edges) to bake from the other side.
16. Enjoy samosa rolls with Green Chutney .

Cauliflower Rice Poha/Pulav

Eat to live and not live to eat. The Indian kitchen has some comfort recipes and one of them is Poha aka. flattened rice with vegetables. A lot of diabetic friends would be scared of eating traditional Poha due to flattened white rice as the main ingredient. The other day, I came across Cauliflower Rice at my local grocery store and immediately I went into my adventure. I wanted to cook the most common rice recipes and serve to my family.

So, my first adventure was conquerring the traditional Poha and replace the rice with Cauliflower Rice. To my surprise, my family could not figure out difference. I want to share this reciepe to all my friends who maybe missing on this dish due to rice and now we have an option.

Ingredients
2 cups of cauliflower rice (follow the instructions on the packet)
1 potato; peeled and chopped
1 medium size onion; thinly sliced
1 cup peas; thawed
1 carrot; peeled and chopped
2-3 dried whole red pepper
5-6 Curry leaves
1 tbsp mustard seeds
1 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp garam Masala
1/2 tsp sea salt (adjust according to taste)
1 tsp lemon juice

Garnish
2-3 tbsp cilantro leaves; washed and chopped
1 Serrano pepper;finely chopped

Preparation
1. Prepare the cauliflower rice according to the instructions on the packet. If steaming let the rice cool down.
2. Take a medium-size saucepan and place it on medium heat.
3. Once the pan is heated add mustard seeds, Curry leaves and dried whole pepper. Stir for 2-3 mins.
4. Add onions to the saucepan and stir onions until they turn light brown in color. Add 2-3 tbsp of water if onions are sticking to the saucepan.
5. Add potatoes, carrots, peas, and salt to the onions with 1/3 cup of water to cook vegetables. Cover the saucepan with the lid to cook vegetables.
6. Transfer the cauliflower rice in a mixing bowl and add turmeric powder, garam Masala,red chili powder.
7. Once the vegetables are cooked add the cauliflower rice in the saucepan. Mix vegetables and cauliflower rice together.
8. Add lemon juice and mix together.
9. Cover the saucepan with the lid for 5-7 minutes.Stir occasionally so the cauliflower rice doesn’t stick.
10. Garnish with cilantro and Serrano pepper.