Archive for the Indian Category

Indian Enchiladas

Posted in Indian, Mexican with tags , , , , on August 30, 2010 by Cooking For Mark

I made this for my family visiting from Utah.  Although we had been busy almost every day sight seeing, my sister asked if I could make dinner, at least just once.  Of course I said yes! I asked what they wanted and they immediately replied with indian saag and masala.  But because i’ve already made this dish recently I wanted to make it a little differently. So I made it into a classic mexican dish: Enchiladas!

I made the traditional saag aloo but added some wonderful hungarian feta cheese which made it even better.  To the masala sauce I added coconut milk and dark chocolate for an extra kick.  Final result….fantastic!!

If you don’t like spinach you could make chicken tikka masala enchiladas! Or shredded beef could work as well. If you want to keep them vegetarian you could also make lentil enchiladas. The possibilities are endless, people!

Ingredients:

  • Spinach & potato Filling (see below)
  • Indian Masala sauce (see below).
  • Flour or corn tortillas
  • Mozzarella cheese
  • Top with greek yogurt (with grated garlic and a pinch of salt)
  • Serve with side salad (I used romaine lettuce, cherry tomatoes, sliced cucumbers, red onion, feta. Dressing: mix balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and a bit of cream.

Step 1:

  • 1 yellow onion
  • 4-5 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger
  • salt + pepper
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 3 tbsp curry
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds (optional)
  • Red chilies (whole or chopped, seeded or not)

Directions: Saute onion until tender. Add garlic and ginger. Add spices. Divide in half and place other half in other pan.

Step 2: Spinach filling

  • About 3-4 potatoes, chopped in small pieces
  • 2 packages frozen spinach, defrosted and fully drained from any moisture
  • About 1 can coconut milk
  • 1/2 lime juice
  • 1/3 c Feta cheese

Directions: (1) cut potatoes and place in pan with hot oil. Add salt and pepper. Brown potatoes and set aside. (2) to 1/2 of onion mixture add spinach.(3)  Slowly add coconut milk and reduce. (4) Add lime juice and potatoes. (5) Remove from heat and add feta cheese.

Step 3: Masala Sauce

  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/3 c. coconut milk
  • 1/4 c. heavy cream or plain yogurt
  • 1/2 lime juice
  • Adjust taste with salt, and more curry
  • Adjust heat with more red chilies or red pepper flakes
  • Optional: 1 tbsp chocolate baking powder or dark block chocolate or mexican mole

Directions: (1) to 2nd half of onion mixture add tomato sauce and paste. (2) Slowly add coconut milk and simmer on low for about 7 minutes. (3) Add cream/yogurt and lime. (4) Taste and adjust with salt and cumin. (5) Add chocolate (optional).

Step 4: Assembling Enchiladas

  1. Add a bottom coat of masala sauce to baking dish.
  2. Place spinach filling on tortilla and roll.
  3. Fill baking sheet with a single layer of enchiladas
  4. Top with masala sauce and mozzarella cheese
  5. Heat in 350 degrees oven for about 10 minutes, until cheese melts
  6. Garnish with cilantro

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Saag Aloo with Coconut Milk Masala Sauce (Spinach & Potatoes with Creamy Tomato Sauce)

Posted in Indian with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 24, 2010 by Cooking For Mark

Wow, this dish was incredible. Truly flavorful, satisfying, easy, and cheap. In fact, you are looking at about 30 minutes of labor and $5-7 in groceries. If you like spinach, I guarantee you will love it!

Now to keep in on the cheep side, as I promised, you will need to go to your local asian store to buy the coconut milk ($1 vs. $3 at grocery store) and ginger. Now if you don’t already have curry purchasing it might put you above budget, but it’s a good investment (I used Madras Curry). If you don’t want to buy it, however, you can still make this by adding a bit more cumin and turmeric (optional).

If you don’t have mustard seeds you can just add a bit of mustard along with the coconut milk.

This meal must be served wit flatbread or naan. You can either purchase at the store, or easily make your own.

Ingredients:

  • 1 onion
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 1/2 tbsp finely chopped ginger
  • 2 tsp Cumin
  • 1 tbsp Curry
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
  • 1 tsp Mustard seeds (or mustard)
  • Red Chilies, to taste (either chopped or whole)
  • 1-2 cans Coconut milk
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 1 Lime
  • 2-4 big potatoes
  • 2 packages frozen chopped spinach (defrosted and drained from water)
  • Cilantro, for garnish
  • Flatbread

Directions

  1. Dice potatoes and cook in pan with oil. Add a bit of salt and pepper. Set aside.
  2. In hot skillet with oil, add onions and cook until transparent.
  3. Add grated garlic, ginger, spices and chilies. Cook for a few minutes.
  4. Add 1/2 of coconut milk
  5. (Masala Sauce): Take out about 1/3 of coconut/spices mixture. Place in 2nd skillet. Add tomato sauce and 1/2 lime juice. Heat on low for about 7 minutes. Adjust taste (either add more coconut milk, more tomato paste, or more spices…then set aside).
  6. Add defrosted spinach (with water squeezed out) to original coconut mixture. Add lime juice and cooked potatoes. If mixture is too dry, add more coconut milk and continue adding until everything is cooked through.
  7. Taste spinach mixture for taste. If it is not flavorful, add more salt, cumin, or curry. At this point you can also increase the spiciness by adding more chopped chili peppers.
  8. Serve by plating the saag (spinach) and then surround the saag with the masala (tomato) sauce. Eat with flatbread or naan.

Potato Dumpling Indian Masala + Greek Salad

Posted in Greek, Indian with tags , , , , , , on July 9, 2010 by Cooking For Mark

Mark and I LOVE indian food.  More specifically, we love the “chicken tikka masala” and always order it at indian restaurants.  This dish is definitively a comfort food, especially for us, I think. It reminds me of traveling abroad, tired from the journey, thirsty from the heat, and hungry from the not so good food. Whenever we were lucky enough to find an indian restaurant we screamed with joy, because we knew no matter what, the chikken masala would always be good. And we were right–it never disappoints.

Earlier this week I tried making a tofu masala, and although it was good, it just wasn’t great. I can always tell if Mark doesn’t like something because his plate won’t return completely cleaned off. Plus, I know when something isn’t as great as it should be. So Mark, you should just tell the truth, m’kay?? Anyways, I don’t like not succeeding at something, so I had to try again. After brainstorming a bit, I came up with a recipe I am happy to document so I can make again, and again…and I think it even rivals the chicken tikka for sure. This meal is super easy, and should take you about 30 minutes. The key ingredient here is the spice, and you can either use garam masala or madras curry. I used madras since I could not find the garam. If you don’t have either, you could try making it with regular curry. The rest of the ingredients you probably have on hand. If not, they are cheap to get.

Masala Sauce Ingredients

  • 1-2 tbsp Olive oil or butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, grated or minced
  • 1 tsp. grated ginger
  • salt + pepper
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tb garam masala spice or madras curry powder
  • 2-3 small cans of tomato sauce + 2 tbsp tomato paste + 3 tbsp water
  • 1/2- 1 c. heavy cream
  • Juice of 1/2 lime
  • Garnish: sour cream, cilantro, and sprinkle of garam masala or curry

Dumpling Ingredients


  • 1 pg round wanton wrappers
  • 2 med/small potatoes
  • 2 1/2  tbs cream cheese
  • 2 1/2 tbsp ricotta cheese
  • salt + pepper
  • 1/2 tbsp garam masala or madras curry

Masala Sauce Instructions:

  1. Saute olive oil (or buter) with onions, then add garlic, salt, pepper, ginger, cumin, and garam masala. Cook for a few minutes, then add tomato sauce, paste and water. Let cook for another few minutes. At the end, add the cream and the lime juice.  Carefully add the dumplings. Let heat through and turn off. To garnish, add a spoonful of sour cream, sprinkle with a bit of curry, and add chopped cilantro.

Dumpling Instructions

  1. Place potatoes in cold water and begin to boil until done. In separate bowl, smash potatoes and add the rest of ingredients.
  2. Place about 1-2 tsp of filling in the middle of a wanton wrapper. With fingers or pastry brush, wet the wanton wrapper slightly with water around the edges. Fold the wrapper in half and press to seal. Tuck in the corners.
  3. Boil water in a pot or skillet. Place 3-5 dumplings at a time in boiling water and boil for about 2 minutes. Transfer to Masala sauce.
  4. Serve with flat bread and Greek salad

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Chicken Alternative

For those of you who are in love with the Indian classic, Chicken Tikka Masala, you should give the dumplings a try, because they truly are amazing. If that doesn’t satisfy your chicken craving, then you have my permission to make the original. You can either just grill chicken and place in the sauce, or you can marinade the chicken in yogurt and spices, and then broil in your oven (this is what makes it “tikka”).

Chicken Marinade:

  • 1 c. plain yogurt
  • 1/2 lime juice
  • 1 tb. garam masala spice (found in asian market)
  • 2 tsp cumin + 2 tsp black pepper + 3 tps salt
  • 1 clove garlic, minced + minced ginger

Instructions: Combine ingredients and marinade for at least 1 hour. Either grill chicken or boil in oven.

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GREEK SALAD


Greek Salad Ingredients:

  • Romaine lettuce
  • Cucumber
  • Tomatoes
  • Red onions
  • Kalamata olives
  • Feta cheese
  • Dressing: olive oil, lime juice, apple cider vinegar, garlic, salt, pepper.

Directions:

  1. Slice, chop and assemble.
  2. Dressing: squeeze 1/2 lime juice. Add 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar, 1 clove grated garlic, salt + pepper to taste. Then add 3 tbsp olive oil.