Saturday, February 26, 2011

Chipotle at home!

I guess I am a weekend cook. Last Monday was a holiday, hence the effort to try something new. We love Chipotle and its burritos. So I decided to give the burrito bowl a whirl. It was a hit, recipe below. The nicest thing is this is a low/no oil recipe, so its very healthy. However, it is meant to be eaten fresh. Note that you can find all the spices mentioned here in the mexican section of the supermarket.

Salsa Verde (Medium heat)

Ingredients (Makes 2 cups)

10 tomatillos

1/2 chopped white onion

10 sprigs of cilantro

1 Tbsp lime juice

2 Serrano peppers, chopped

2 Cloves of Garlic

Salt to taste


1. Remove papery husks from tomatillos and rinse well.

2. Cut them in half and place cut side up on a foil-lined baking sheet. Place under a broiler along with the garlic for about 5-7 minutes to lightly blacken the skin.

3. Blend tomatillos, lime juice, onions, cilantro, chili peppers and garlic in a blender to a semi smooth consistency. Season to taste with salt.

Corn Salsa (Mild)

Ingredients (Makes 1 cup)

1 Cup frozen sweet yellow corn

1 Jalapeno or log hot pepper

1/2 Red Onion

1/3 Cup Chopped Cilantro

1 Tablespoon Lime Juice

Salt to taste


1. Microwave the corn for 3 mins with a splash of water.

2. Dice the Onion, and jalapeno finely.

3. Combine all the ingredients and season to taste.

Red Hot Salsa (Hot)

Ingredients (Makes 1 small cup)

10 Chillies De Arbol

1 tablespoon of sesame seeds

2 cloves

2 allspice berries

1 clove garlic

1 teaspoon Mexican oregano

1 tablespoon cumin seeds

1 teaspoon oil

1 red tomato



1. Toast the sesame seeds, cumin, cloves and allspice to a golden color

2. Grind all the ingredients together to a fine paste

3. cook on a stove for about 5 minutes.

Cilantro Lime Rice:


1 teaspoon vegetable oil or butter

10 sprigs cilantro

1 cup white basmati rice

2 cups water

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 Lime


1. In a 2-quart heavy saucepan, heat oil or butter over low heat, stirring occasionally until melted.

2. Add rice and lime juice, stir for 1 minute.

3. Add water and salt, bring to a full boil.

4. At boiling, cover, turn down to simmer over low heat until rice is tender and the water is absorbed, about 25 minutes.

5. Fluff rice with a fork.

6. Add Cilantro and mix well.

Black Beans:


1 can black beans

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup water

1 spoon taco seasoning

1 spoon of the hot salsa made previously.


1. Wash canned beans thoroughly in cold water, drain, add water and salt.

2. Add the sauce and taco seasoning.

3. Cook gently in a deep pot for about 10 mins or until the beans create a gravy.

Pico de Gallo:

Just follow

Now combine everything, add dollops of sour cream and enjoy!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Vegetable Kuruma

I am and have always been such a stickler for this recipe, ever since childhood. Since my teens, this was one of my crazy food craves, with the layered bread, parotta. I must have brought this home about twice a week, under the eyes of a disapproving mom, for getting takeout. Needless to say, she tried to reproduce the recipe several times to satisfy her homegrown food critic. Every one of her versions were stellar, but not quite the same. I therefore decided to give this one more try, marrying recipes from 2-3 food blogs and viola! Success! The way it tastes in the hotels of India. This is too good to be true, hence duly noted here!

Ingredients (feeds 4):

Diced onion: 1
Ginger: 1 inch piece
Diced vegetables (carrot,peas,corn,cauliflower) : 1.5 cups
Boiled potatoes: 2 small
Javenthri: 1 flower
Curry leaves: 5
Green chillies: 6
Ginger garlic paste: 1 tbsp.
Vine ripe tomatoes: 2
Bay leaf - 1
Corriander powder: 3 tsp.
Garam masala: 2 tsp.
Turmeric powder: 2 tsp.
Salt to taste
Oil - 5 tbsp.

To Grind to a fine paste:

Shredded Coconut : 1 cup
Cashews/blanched peeled almonds: 10
Poppy seeds: 2 tbsp.
Cloves: 2
Cinnamon: 1 small stick
Cardamom: 1 pod
Green chillies: 2
Fennel seeds: 1 tbsp.


Heat 3 tbsp oil in a pan. Add the bay leaf and saute.
After it starts to brown add curry leaves, chillies, ginger, javenthri, and onions. Cook till golden brown.
Add the ginger garlic paste, and saute till it cooks.
Add half of the corriander powder and all of the garam masala and cook for a minute.
Add the veggies except the potatoes and cook till they are well cooked.
Add tomatoes and cook for a few minutes.
At this point, add the ground paste, the potatoes, the turmeric and corriander powder.
Add water based on the consistency you want. Cook for 5 minutes.
Add salt and the remaining oil. Cook on a low flame until the kuruma is not watery.
Ready! Enjoy with parotta/chapathi.

For kothu parotta, Make the above gravy with onions, but without any veggies or tomatoes. Saute curry leaves, shredded carrots, peas and cauliflower till cooked.
Add an egg if you like and scramble well.
Then add a little of the gravy, followed by pieces of kerala parotta. Add salt to taste and saute.