Buttermilk Biscuits

I first had buttermilk biscuits at Popeyes along with fried chicken. And it was love at first bite.

Since then I have been in search for a recipe to recreate them in my home myself. I tried a lot of recipes online and finally I can say that I might have found one that I am really happy with. Today I am going to share it with you all.

Buttermilk Biscuitsmakes: 8 biscuits
adapted from here

Ingredients:

All purpose (not self-rising) – 2 cups
Baking powder – 1 tbsp
Salt – 1 tsp
Sugar – 1 tsp
Unsalted cold butter – 6 tbsp
Buttermilk – 1 cup

Method:

Preheat oven to 450°F. In a mixing bowl, add the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Mix. Now add cold butter cut into tiny pieces and buttermilk. Using a fork, gently mix, avoid overmixing. Dust flour on your kitchen countertop and invert the buttermilk+flour mixture. Knead dough gently 3 to 4 times until it holds together. Dust your palms with flour as well and pat the mixture down into a large patty, approx 1 inch in thickness.

Line a rimmed baking tray with parchment paper and dust it lightly with flour. Working quickly, use a biscuit cutter to cut biscuits and keep placing the biscuits on the tray, make sure they are all placed close to each other. Place the baking tray in the refrigerator for approx 15-30 minutes. Now transfer the tray to the preheated oven and let them bake for 15 minutes. As soon as you see a get a light brown hue, remove from oven and serve warm along with a salad or coleslaw and baked/grilled chicken.

Luv,
Mona

Puran ki Roti – Parathas stuffed with Lentil Halwa

It isn’t until you lose something that you realize how important something was. A few days back I was on the verge of losing my blog. My blog of years, which is very dear to me. I was asking for help around, but no one could, and those who could, were way out of my budget. But I did not give up, how could I? I prayed and alhamdulillah, out of nowhere a very hunble gentleman came to my rescue like an angel. This brother was so willing to help me out for nothing in return. I will never forget your selfless help and you will always be in my prayers.

And I realized how much I missed blogging about my family recipes, and documenting the stories that live in my heart and memories. With a little boutique business and along with a toddler, I was unable to give the attention to my blog that I used to before. But inshallah, I am back. You will all see me blog regularly and I will never take my blog for granted ever again.

Today I bring you a recipe that is very close to my heart, that screams my childhood, those beautiful afternoons, when after a small siesta, my mother would make a few of these absolutely wonderful rotis for us all to fill our stomachs with. We all enjoyed the rotis with so much joy and always looked forward to the the next time when mother would make them again.

Puran ki Roti – Parathas stuffed with Lentil Halwa
Makes – around 10 Rotis

Durum Flour – 1 1/2 cup
Ghee – 1 tbsp
pinch of salt
enough water to make dough
For Puran:
Chana Dal – 1 cup
Sugar – 1 1/4 cup
Green cardamom powder – 1/3 tsp
Oil – as required for toasting

Method:

1. Wash and soak chana dal in surplus water overnight.
2. The next day, drain the water and transfer to a pressure cooker. Add water to cover the dal and pressure cook until the dal is soft. Using a whisk or an immersion blender, blend until the dal is smooth. You can also grind it if you want. Transfer to a pan at medium high heat and add sugar and cardamom powder. Mix well and cook while stirring frequently until the dal resembles a thick paste and begins to sererate from the pan. Keep a close eye. Remove from heat and let it cool to room temperature. You can also make this ahead of time and store in refrigerator for upto a week.
3. To make dough, add flour, ghee and salt in a mixing bowl. Mix well then add water little by little. Form a soft pliable dough just like chapathi dough. Cover the dough and allow it to rest for an hour.
4. Make 10 lemon sized balls of both the dough as well as the prepared lentil mixture. Roll the dough flat just slightly using your hands, then place the lentil mixture ball in the center and wrap the dough around it completely to cover it well, just like you make stuffed parathas. Then flatten it slightly. Now using your rolling pin, roll it to a thick or thin poli. Dust flour if needed. Heat tawa pan and carefully place the rolled out roti on the tawa, drizzle oil and cook the roti on both sides until brown spots appear. Continue until all are done. Serve hot.

Luv,
Mona

Pyaaz ki Pakodi – Crispy Onion Fritters

Every time I visit Hyderabad, I ask my father to get some crispy pyaaz ki pakodi from sweet shops in the city. I just love them. Small sweet shop at almost every corner in Hyderabad sell an array of sweets and also savory snacks.

But when I am in Toronto, missing them, I make these myself in my kitchen trying to replicate them as close as possible to the ones that I get in Hyderabad. I love these pakodi along with tamarind chutney on a rainy day. They also make a yummy Iftaar snack. Sometimes I also enjoy them along with my meal on the side.

Pyaaz ki Pakodi – Crispy Onion Fritters

Ingredients:

Besan – 1 1/2 cups
Rice Flour – 1/4 cup
Green chillies, finely chopped – 8
Ginger – grated, 1/2 tsp
Onions – 2, large, thinly sliced
Olive Oil – 2 tbsp
Curry leaves – 1 or 2 sprigs, roughly chopped
Salt – 3/4 tsp
Pinch of baking soda
Canola Oil for deep frying

Method:

1. In a mixing bowl, add sliced onions, besan, chopped green chillies, curry leaves, salt, olive oil and baking soda. Mix well. Add just 1/4 cup of water and mix well to form a thick-hard batter. Go easy on water as onion and salt release water too.
2. In a kadai or wok, pour oil to deep fry and as soon as it is piping hot, drop small and flattish balls of the batter using your hands into the hot oil. Reduce heat to medium and deep fry till they turn golden brown. Remove using a slotted soon into a large strainer for excess oil to drip away. Continue until all the batter is used up.
Serve hot with chutney/sauce of your choice, along with chai/coffee or juice. I served them with tamarind chutney along with other sides at Iftaar yesterday.

Note:
1. If you want do not want them crisp, omit rice flour and add a little bit more water, to make onion bhajiyas.
2. If you do not want to fry them, you can even shallow fry them in about 2 tbsp per batch in a non-stick frying pan. Make sure you flatten the batter so that they shallow fry evenly. You can even bake them for a healthier version. I have tried baking them a few times and will still continue to do for a few more trials until insha’Allah I come up with a perfect recipe for you all soon.

Luv,
Mona

Namakpaare – Triangular Crispy Salty Munchies

One of my most fond memories whenever I think of Namakpaare of eat them is the way my mom used to offer them to us as a quick snack. There always used to be something on our dining table during my childhood, something yummy, a delicious snack. I remember my mom used to spend a better part of her time daily in the kitchen, toiling away to keep us content, to keep us nourished and full.

Namakpaare are triangular deep fried crispy salty snacks that can be made ahead and stored at room temperature in air tight containers. A simple and delightful snack. A sweet version of the same is called as Shakkarpaare, which I had posted about a while ago.

Ammi (as I call my mom) used to offer us namakpaare mixed in a cup of warm khatti dal. You might be surprised at this unusual combination. But it always worked, and so wonderfully. I always loved to eat namakpaare soaked in khatti dal and I have fond memories of it. It is comfort food for me. When I gave my dear husband namakpaare the same way, he enjoyed them too.

Namakpaare – Triangular Crispy Salty Munchies

Ingredients:

Durum Flour – 3 cups
Carom Seeds/Ajwain – 1/2 tbsp
Salt to taste
Water – as needed
Oil to deep dry

Method:

1. In a mixing bowl add flour , ajwain, salt a tsp of oil. Mix with your hands. Add water as needed to form a stiff dough. Cover the dough in the bowl with a damp towel. Let the dough rest for 1/2 an hour.

2. Later shape the dough into a log. Cut the log into pieces. Roll Each dough piece into balls between your palms.

Using a rolling pin, roll each ball into a disk, not very thin, neither thick. Using a pizza cutter, cut into 1/2 inch strips lengthwise and then 1/2 inch across to get diamond shaped pieces. Do the same with rest of the dough.

3. Heat oil to deep fry in a kadhai/wok and deep fry the namakpaare on medium heat. Fry till golden on both sides. Continue frying in batches until all the dough in used.

4. Store the namakpaare after they completely cooled down in an airtight container. They stay fresh for weeks.

Luv
Mona

Meethay Ghoday

A few days before I heard my mother in law speak about a sweet dish that I had never seen, tasted or even heard about in my entire life. She told me that Ghoday, is a special Hyderabadi dessert that her mom used to make for her when she was a kid. I immediately requested her to make it for me well.

ghoday – left to dry

The method is simple. And very similar to making pasta. Dough is rolled out, cut into squares and made into a cute flower shapes.

shaping ghoday

 Then they are left to dry out for a few hours or overnight. Once nicely dried they are deep fried until golden brown in color. Finally they are cooked in milk and sugar and served at room temperature.

deep fried ghoday

It was my first time I had prepared and tasted this dessert. I enjoyed it. It was delicious!

Meethay Ghoday – Traditional Hyderabadi Milk and Flour based Dessert

Ingredients:

Durum Flour – 1 1/2 cup (you can also use maida)
Salt – 1/4 tsp
Canola oil (you can also use a little bit of ghee for nice flavor)
Water
Milk – 2 cups
Sugar – 1 cup
Raisins and sliced almonds – 3 tbsp, shallow fried

Method:

1. Combine the flour, salt, oil and water (reserving some of the flour for rolling). Add only a little water at a time and make a dough. Cover with a damp towel and keep aside for 30 minutes. Later knead for 5-10 minutes until the dough is smooth, firm and pliable. Make the dough into a log and cut into 3 equal sized pieces. Roll into a ball between your palms. Using a rolling pin roll each ball into into a disc. Make sure that the circle is as thin as it can be and try to use as less flour as possible to aid in the rolling process. Cut the rolled out dough into squares using a knife or a pizza cutter. Shape each square into a flower as shown in the picture above and keep them aside on a tray. Continue until all the dough is used up. Leave the shaped flowers on the tray uncovered for 5-8 hours or overnight until they are dry and hardened a little bit.
2. In a frying pan pour oil to deep fry the prepared dried dough flowers. Once the oil is hot, deep fry them all until they are nicely golden brown in color. Usin a slotted spoon, remove them onto a platter.
3. In a heavy bottomed saucepan at medium high heat, pour milk and about 1 cup water and add the deep fried dough flowers. Mix well and let it simmer covered for 10-15 minutes until they are softened. Give it a stir once in a while. Add sugar and mix. Add more water if you need to cook them more. Once cooked thoroughly, add the shallow fried raisins and sliced almonds. Transfer to a serving bowl. Let cool to room temperature. Ghoday is ready to be served.

Luv,
Mona