Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Jhatpat Pulao with Palak Raitha

This is one tried and tested recipe in my list of "easy-to-cook" recipes. Especially when you have unexpected guests and you do not have enough time to turn out something nice.

All you need is some cooked rice, a few vegetables from your refrigerator and some curd to turn this dish in less then an hour's time.

Ingredients for the Jhatpat Pulao:

3-4 Carrots
1 Bowl of Green Peas
2 Medium sized Onions
6-8 button Mushrooms
1 Capsicum
A few pieces of Paneer
Salt to taste
1 Tsp of Crushed black pepper

2 Katori (Medium) of Rice


If you have cooked rice you can readily use it. Otherwise take the rice and wash it. Now boil 5-6 cups of water and put some Pudina (mint) leaves into it along with salt and some all spice leaves(If you dont have this you can put whole spices).

When the water starts to boil put the washed rice and cook till the rice is 90% complete.
Drain the water and keep the rice aside.

Now take some oil in a pan, throw in some whole spices like BayLeaf, Cloves, Green Cardamom, Cinnamon, Star Anise along with some thinly sliced onion and saute for a while.

Now add the chopped carrots, capsicum, Mushrooms and green Peas into the pan and saute till almost done.

Add salt and crushed black pepper after a while. Now finally put the paneer and fry till well browned.

Once this is done take a serving platter and pour the cooked rice on it. Now pour the vegetable mixture and and mix it lightly.

Garnish with fried onions and cashew before serving hot along with the palak raitha.

For the Raitha:
Palak (a bunch)
1/4 tsp methi
pinch of hing
4-5 red chilles
1 tsp of jeera
1 Nestle Dahi (big)
Black Salt to taste

Heat oil in a pan. Throw in the Jeera, Methi, Hing and Red chillies and saute till well browned. Now pour the cleaned and chopped palak leaves and fry till the leaves are wilted.

Now take some dahi in a mixie container and pour the fried ingredients and blend it together. Take it out into a container, pour in the rest of curd, black salt. Garnish with thinly sliced onions and serve along with the Pulao.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Basic Cake Recipe

I never knew how to bake a cake until a few years ago when I happened to watch Sanjeev Kapoor's "Khana Khazana" in which he was teaching a cake that could be baked in a microwave in within 10 minutes.

That was when I first started baking cakes. In a microwave. Since then its been many years now since i have been baking different types of cakes and have tried to come up with a healthier version for everyone to enjoy. This recipe is one recipe that I have shared with many of my friends.

You can bake a cake using in a convection oven or in a microwave. The setting will be different. The taste varies. I personally like the cake baked in a convection oven over the microwave. It comes out more crispy an well browned.

In a microwave the cake come out real soft but without the browning effect.

But I make both depending upon the time that I have.If I need to make it in a jiffy I use the microwave.

If I have ample time I use the convection oven. So here goes the recipe.



1. Wholewheat Flour (2 Cups)
2. Sugar (1 1/2 Cups)
3. Salt (a pinch)
4. Baking Soda (1/2 tsp)
5. Baking Powder (3/4 tsp)

1. Eggs (3)
2. Vegetable Oil(3/4 cup)
3. Milk (3/4 Cup)
4. Vanilla Essence(a few drops)
5. Water (1/4 Cup - 1/2 Cup)

Combine the dry ingredients slowly into the wet ingredients and whisk it in one direction for the next 10 minutes.

If the batter is a little too thick you can add some more water. It should be at a thicker consistency then pancake batter.


Grease a baking tray and pour the batter into the tray. Microwave it on high for 8 minutes. Use a skewer in the center of the cake and check if the cake is completely baked. If it comes out clean the cake is baked completely and ready to be cooled.

Convection Oven:

Pre-heat the oven for 150 deg c for about 5 minutes. Now grease a baking tray and pour the batter into the tray. Heat it in the oven for the next 35-45 minutes. Check with skewer if it comes out clean. The cake if done will have look dark brown on the surface.

The cake given above was baked in a convection oven.