Masoor Daal (Red Lentil)

Daal, not dull! Hah I tried.

It’ s a proud moment for this blog because I have finally mastered the art of cooking Daal. After many failed attempts (partly because I didn’t own a presuure cooker), I have finally nailed Daal Chawal. This recipe is a version of the one my cook in Pakistan used to make and is admittedly a tad spicier. I also took the liberty to deepen the color but don’t worry, I’ll share the more classic yellow daal very soon!

If you’re in the same boat as I was a few weeks ago, this is for you! Just get yourself a mini pressure cooker featured in this video and you’re golden!

Continue reading “Masoor Daal (Red Lentil)”

Restaurant- Style Boneless Chicken Handi

Nothing says desi more than fingers dripping with curry! Allow me to bless your kitchen with my coveted chicken curry recipe. In the most traditional sense, you call this Boneless Handi. Handi is vessel (usually terracotta) in which this dish is traditionally cooked. But trust me when I say this, your favorite restaurant is not cooking their famous Boneless Handi in an actual Handi. I cook all my curries in a stainless steel saucepan or wok and absolutely love the curries that come out of those vessels.

I have already covered the basics of how to determine when the curry is done in my Chicken Karahi post. For me, the key to the most flavorful curry lies in 1) yogurt 2) red juicy tomatoes and 3) continuous stirring towards the end until the masala releases that orange-tinted oil. If you do not see the oil glossing the surface, your curry is not done. Let it continue cooking on medium to low heat. This recipe itself is not a huge departure from my Chicken Karahi recipe. Both require yogurt and both require a whole lotta stirring. However, in my Boneless Handi, I create the curry base prior to adding in the chicken. This is also the technique that is traditionally used to make Boneless Handi.

Continue reading “Restaurant- Style Boneless Chicken Handi”

Fudgiest Brownies You Will Ever Make!

Welcome old and new friends! These gorgeous fudgy brownies have been alive on my channel for a few years. This is one of the first few recipes that I shot for my YouTube channel. Having created this blog much later, I didn’t add some of my earlier recipes. I’m slowly beginning to make some of favorite creations to add to my blog.

 

These fudgy brownies are a no-brainer. Remember, key to the fudge is melting chocolate and butter and then incorporating the remaining ingredients: eggs, cocoa and flour. Get your hands on the good kind of chocolate. It will truly up your brownie game! These brownies should not be cakey at all unless you overbake them. We’re not adding any leavening agent like baking soda or baking powder. Keep checking up on it in the oven and pull the pan out once a skewer inserted in the center comes out with fudgy crumbs attached- ~30-35 minutes mark should do it but I’d recommend to start checking up around 25 minutes. Tend to these bad boys like you would a bad boy :p Continue reading “Fudgiest Brownies You Will Ever Make!”

Pound Cake with a fine crumb

Ever wondered why your Pound Cake always came out so crumby? The secret to making a Pound Cake that is fluffy and has a very fine crumb is to get all the ingredients at room temperature. This is truly the only secret! Butter should be soft because it just creams a whole lot better with sugar. Eggs should be out of the fridge at least an hour early (I soak them in warm water for 10 mins). And milk should not be chilled. If you have the patience for it, I’d say go ahead and sift in the flour because sifting helps to lighten it up. All your hard work will pay off when you slice into this Pound Cake.

A handy tip when you bake cakes: let the cake cool completely before slicing. Cakes need time to cool. If you slice into a cake fresh out of the oven, you run the risk of leaving crumbs all over your cutting board. Be patient. I also like to use a baking pan that has sharp corners. God knows it took me so long to find the right pan. Mine is from Chicago Metallic (no, this is not an ad.) I just really like how the cake turns out. The slices come out sharp and clean but a loaf pan with rounded corners is fine too.

You may be wondering if I have tried making Pound Cake with a leavening agent. I have actually, with a scant 1/4 tsp baking powder which indeed lifts the cake ever so slightly. To be honest, the result of that cake is just as good. However, a traditional Pound Cake relies on creaming the ingredients to naturally raise the cake without the help of a leavener. I like to keep things traditional every once in a while.

Continue reading “Pound Cake with a fine crumb”

Chicken Pulao

Every visit to Pakistan begins this way. Chicken Pulao. It’s the only dish I request my mom to make every time I board an Emirates flight back home. I seldom give mom due credit for her cooking, but for chicken Pulao, it would be atrocious to not award her some laurels. In my attempts to learn to make mom’s Pulao, I would carefully follow her steps but just never had the patience to replicate the exhaustive and involved cooking process. The rice is cooked low and slow in a seasoned broth. Mom makes Pulao with fresh chicken broth. And that my friends takes a bit more patience.

This recipe has no patience so I present to you a version that is almost as delicious as my mom’s if you’re pressed for time. Almost because we’re cheating our way to victory a bit, okay?

Let’s get started!

 

Continue reading “Chicken Pulao”

Pakistani Chinese Chicken Corn Soup

This soup takes me right back to the hospital room where my aunt is ladling her famous Chicken Corn Soup into bowls for the kids as we younglings excitedly watch another heavily pregnant aunt breathe through her labor pains on the hospital bed. We slurp the soup. The pregnant aunt heaves a sigh. That’s a really strange memory. This aunt was a “soup bearer” and would always bring a huge stainless steel pot with a giant ladle along with her to family picnics, dinners and funerals.

Continue reading “Pakistani Chinese Chicken Corn Soup”

Crispy Chicken Keema Burger

One of the reasons I seldom make crispy chicken burgers is that it demands time and extensive cleaning as you set up your coating station which includes eggs and flour. I wanted to create a recipe that is easy and quick. In this Crispy Chicken Burger recipe, I do without eggs and found that the fat in chicken is enough to hold together the ground meat.

Adding in garam masala and ginger garlic paste gives it a Pakistani flavor, which along with the raita that I shared with my Seekh Kebab fills the kitchen with a familiar aroma of Pakistani cooking. Follow along and you’ll be quite amazed at how crispy and easy it is to make these burgers. Continue reading “Crispy Chicken Keema Burger”

Sheer Khurma Recipe

 

Sheer Khurma is a popular Pakistani dessert prepared around religious holidays to add just the right amount of sweetness to the Eid table. Similar to desserts like Kheer and Kulfi, Sheer Khurma is also made with milk that is thickened slowly with the help of roasted vermicelli. Essentially, vermicelli is a type of pasta (not similar to rice noodles) and the starch allows milk to thicken. Continue reading “Sheer Khurma Recipe”