Sesame coated Falafel /Spicy Bean Pattis

Madhu of Ruchii had sent me Arusuvai gifts about a month and half ago. I received the package at work and I excitedly opened it, my heart filled with warmth and anticipation. The package consisted of Rasam powder, Amchur powder, Raspberry tea, coasters and a thoughtfully written greeting card. The aroma of the Rasam powder was so powerful that two of my Indian colleagues came rushing to see what I was up to and what I was ‘cooking’!

Anyway, thank you very much dear Madhu for such thoughtful and wonderful gifts, I will cherish them for a long time. (For details of Arusuvai and credits see)

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Now that I had the surprise ingredients on hand, I racked my brains and thought of different things I would do with them. I knew what I would do with the Rasam powder, but the Aamchur was the tricky one. I have not used Aamchur that much in my cooking and I had to ponder to come up with a good recipe. I zeroed in onto this No fry Falafel recipe using Garbanzo Beans and the source of inspiration was from the book Vegetarian Book.

The nutty flavored beans garbanzo beans are a good source of protein without the high calories or saturated fat found in other foods. Along with protein these beans, have the blood sugar stabilizing effect and heart health benefits of the soluble fiber. (Source)

After I made this I felt that the taste of this was similar to the Potato Tikkis. I had to add the bread as I felt the dough was not holding up well while making the Pattis. Addition of Aamchur really made a world of difference to the taste. This is my contribution to Sangeeth’s Eat Healthy-Protein Rich event at Art of Cooking Indian Food.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup garbanzo beans/ canned is also fine
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  •  2 green chillies finely chopped
  •  1 Tbsp grated ginger
  •  1 Tbsp grated garlic
  • 2 tsp Aamchur powder
  • 1 slice bread (edges cut)
  • 1 tsp jeera coriander powder(optional)
  •  ½ cup chopped coriander leaves
  • White sesame seeds for coating
  • Oil
  • Salt

Method:

 

  • (If using the canned beans then ignore this step) Soak the garbanzo beans in enough water overnight. Pressure cook the beans until it is soft (not mushy).
  • Dip the bread in water and squeeze out the water completely.
  • Mix all the ingredients (except oil and sesame seeds) well making sure there are no lumps. Taste for seasonings and adjust taste.
  •  Heat a flat bottom pan and spread around 1 tsp of oil.
  • Divide this mixture into big lemon sized ball and using the tip of your hands flatten it.
  •  Coat this thoroughly in the sesame seeds and place them on the pan. Continue the same process for the remaining balls.
  • Put little oil around each patty and cook until it is done.

  • After one side is cooked, (turned light brown) gently turn it on the other side and allow it to cook.

 

 

Oatmeal Walnut Shortcake with Nutmeg (Eggless)

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One of our favorite family pastimes most Friday evenings is to hang out at Barnes and Noble. We finish our dinner early and head out to B&N which is about a mile or so from our house. Our little one Sidarth usually plays with the toy trains in the kids section and we browse through the books of our interest.

No surprises here when I say that my favorite section is the cookbook section. It is easy to get lost in the wide array of books what with beautiful pictures, great cooking ideas, tips and knowledge of cuisines from all over the world. On one such occasion I saw this Vegetarian book and loved the recipes, pictures and the ideas.

This recipe is from that cookbook with the modification of adding nutmeg to enhance the flavor of this shortcake. The original recipe called to roll out the dough into a big circle and then cut out discs using circular cutter from that. But I had trouble doing that and I patted the dough into circles.

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2/3 cup all purpose flour
  •  ¼ cup oatmeal
  • ¼ cup sugar
  •  8 Tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter
  •  1 Tbsp milk
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ cup shelled walnuts, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Light brown sugar for sprinkling

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Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 350 F and grease one or two baking sheets.
  • Sift the 2 flours together and add the dry ingredients salt, sugar, oatmeal and mix well.
  • Slightly warm the butter and add to this mixture. Add the walnut and nutmeg, little milk and make thick dough. (This is almost as thick as chapathi dough)
  • Take small balls from the dough, pat it with your hands and make rounds. (Use a round cutter if required and make the round even).
  • Continue doing the same with remaining dough. Finally brush the top with milk and sprinkle them with sugar.
  • Bake for 12-15 minutes until golden.  

  This is my contribution to Sunita’s Think Spice Event hosted by Aparna of My Diverse Kitchen.

Low fat Pani Puri / Golgappa

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While Pani Puri and low-fat might seem like an oxymoron, there are ways to achieve the trick.Check this out to see the traditional way of making these.  In this recipe I have substituted the regular puri(deep fried)  with this store brought ready made baked phyllo shells. I had been eyeing these low-fat mini-fillo shells for a long time now, but then got this idea of using this as puri for “pani puri/golgappa” only a few days ago. They are available in the regular super market in the frozen section.

This is more of a procedure than a recipe. You are in fact limited by your imagination in filling these shells.You can fill them up with all the good stuff and make this as healthy as possible. This can be served as appetizers at parties and this is something that the kids will love too.

Raw veggies diced is mixed with boiled peas/garbanzo beans/ moong, boiled potato and filled into the shells. Then spoonful of pani (spicy water) and sweet tamarind chutney are added to this to make one mean exotic tasting dish. The shells are about 35 calories for 2 and I feel that this is a healthy substitute for the traditional calorie laden puri.

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Pani (Spicy Water): I make this a bit thick compared to the regular pani.

1/2 cup mint leaves (Pudina)
1/2 cup corriander leaves
2 to 4 green chilies (based on taste)
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon black salt
1 tablespoon roasted cumin seed powder
salt per taste

Procedure:

Blend everything to a smooth paste adding water (3/4 cup). This should be spicy (hot). Do not worry about the taste as this will be compensated by the sweet taste of tamarind chutney. The pani (water) will taste best if stored for a day and used the next day.
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Sweet Tamarind Chutney

3/4 cup tamarind water (lemon size tamarind soaked in water)
1/2 cup pitted dates (chopped finely)
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1  tsp red chilli powder
jaggery per taste
salt

Procedure:

In a heavy bottom pan add the tamarind water, dates, jaggery, cumin powder, chilli powder and salt. Bring this to boil and cook until the mixture becomes thick. Turn off the heat and allow the mixture to cool. Grind this to a smooth paste.

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To assemble:

1 pack of mini fillo shells
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped tomato
1/2 cup boiled potao cut into cubes
1/4 cup chopped corriander leaves
1/2 cup boiled peas/ garbanzo beans/ moong

Bake the shells in the oven as instructed. Keep aside to cool.
Mix all the veggies with the boiled peas. Add spoonful of this into the shells.
Next add spoonful of sweet chutney and spicy water.

Serve immediately as they tend to get soggy if kept for a while.

This is my contribution to Healthy Cooking an event hosted by the wonderful and talented Mansi of Fun and Food.