Khotto translates to a ‘basket’ in Konkani. Tiny baskets of Jackfruit leaves are woven together and batter is poured into it and steamed. The aroma of Jackfruit leaves imparted to the Khotto is unique and delicious. Served either with a coconut chutney or Sambhar Khotto is a delicacy! I have posted an Urad Dal and Semolina under the section ‘Breakfast Eats’ of this website. Today posting one made of Urad Dal and rice rava. Recipe link to the Chutney is given below.
250 gms Urad Dal /Split black gram
400 gms Idli rava/Rice rava
Wash and soak the Urad Dal for four hours. Wash again a couple of times and grind it in a wet grinder for half an hour to a smooth and fluffy batter adding water a little at a time. Pour it into a vessel. Wash the Idli rava, squeeze well and add it to the ground Urad batter. Add salt, mix well and allow to ferment for 12-14 hours. Keep the idli steamer boiling. Give a quick whisk to the batter and pour it into the woven Jackfruit leaves basket. Place them in the steamer and steam for about 15 minutes. A knife inserted in the Khotto should come out clean. Remove and serve hot with Chutney or Sambhar.
Diwali the festival of lights sees a burst of activity in Indian households. The household is thoroughly cleaned and a variety of sweets and savouries are made to welcome Goddess Lakshmi. On the platter are Urad dal Ladoos, coconut burfi, Potato Rava Ladoo, Chirote, Potato and Besan Sev, Maida Chakli, Crispy Kodbale, Chevda and Tikha Gathiya. Recipe links to all the items are given below.
This post is very special to me as it is the 1000th post in my website in a span of 38 months. Thanking everyone for the encouragement and support shown.
This is an instant no fuss coconut burfi which gets ready in exactly ten minutes. One just needs to have fresh coconut on hand. You may add colour or essence of your choice. I prefer mine with the original coconut flavour.
1 cup grated coconut
1 cup sugar
1 tsp cardamom powder
1 tbsp Ghee/Clarified Butter
Run the grated coconut and sugar together in a blender for a couple of minutes. Tip it into a pan and add the Ghee. Keep stirring on a medium flame till the whole mass comes together and the coconut mixture leaves the sides of the pan. Add the cardamom powder, mix well and tip it into a pre greased plate. Even it out gently and allow to cool. When cool cut into pieces of desired size.
These melt in the mouth Chaklis can be prepared in no time. No grinding, roasting or any laborious task involved as while making the other Chaklis. You may even add a mashed potato if you wish to, but I skipped it this time as I have already made a potato and Besan sev.
250 gms Maida /All purpose flour
1 heaped tsp Jeera/Cumin seeds
1 heaped tsp Til/Sesame
1/2 tsp Ajwain/Carom seeds
1 tsp pepper powder
1 heaped tsp butter
Tie the Maida in a muslin or any thin cloth and steam it for fifteen minutes. Remove and allow to cool thoroughly. Break the lump formed because of steaming and sieve it. Add the pepper powder, Jeera, Ajwain, Sesame and butter . Crumble it well. Add a little water at a time and make a semi soft dough. The dough should neither be too soft nor too hard. If the dough is too soft the Chakli absorbs a lot of oil. If it’s hard then the Chakli breaks while pressing. Put the dough into the Chakli press and press the Chaklis on a butter paper or plastic sheet. Heat oil in a pan. Gently slide in the Chaklis around two at a time and fry on a medium flame till it turns golden yellow and crisp. At this time the frothing of the oil stops. Remove it from the oil and drain on a kitchen towel. Allow to cool thoroughly before storing it in an airtight container.
This dip will have you drooling for more. You can serve it with finger food or slather it on bread or even use it while making noodles. The cheese used adds to the taste and it can be stored in an airtight container for a week in the refrigerator.
1 large Bell pepper /Capsicum
1 tsp butter
10 green chillies
7 cloves of garlic
Juice of one lemon
2 slices of Cheese singles or a handful of grated cheese
Roughly chop the Bell pepper and roast it with a tsp of butter till it wilts. Allow to cool. Grind together the roasted Bell pepper, chillies, garlic, salt, lemon juice and the slices of cheese. Add water only if necessary to get a chutney like consistence. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
The Schezwan Chutney is an Indianised version of the original Schezwan sauce. It contains more of garlic and the spice level has been adapted to suit the Indian palate. I usually make a batch with which I can make three varieties of Indo Chinese cuisine.
1/3 cup vegetable oil 15 Cloves garlic finely chopped 1 1/2 inch ginger finely chopped 1 onion minced 25 Kashmiri Red Chilies (soaked in water for half an hour)) 1 teaspoon soya sauce 1 teaspoon vinegar 1/4 cup water 2 tablespoons Tomato ketchup 3 tablespoons sugar Salt
Heat oil in a pan. Add the garlic and ginger. Saute on a low flame till the raw aroma is gone. Be careful not to brown or burn the ginger and garlic. Add the minced onions and let them cook on a low flame. In the meanwhile, remove the chillies from the water. Grind them with two tablespoons of water into a paste. Set aside. Once the onions turn translucent add ground chilies, soya sauce, vinegar, ketchup, sugar, salt and 1/4 cup of the water which was used to soak the chillies. . Bring this to a boil and simmer till the sauce thickens. The oil by now should have separated, and there should be some oil floating on top.Switch off the flame and let it cool. Once the sauce has completely cooled down, transfer to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to a fortnight.
Salsa in Mexican translates to sauce and Fresca means fresh. So, Salsa Fresca is nothing but a fresh sauce. Made of a mixture of tomatoes, onions and cilantro(coriander leaves) this is usually served as a dip with Nachos, but I love it with Tortillas and even with Poori.
6 ripe tomatoes
1 onion chopped
4 green chillies
Handful of fresh cilantro
2 large cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1/2 tsp sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
Chop the tomatoes, onion and cilantro. Tip in the garlic cloves and green chillies in a blender. Crush. Add the tomatoes, onion, lemon juice and cilantro and run it on pulse mode. It should remain chunky. Pour it into a bowl. Add the salt, pepper and sugar. Mix well and serve.
Mexicans also make it by dry roasting the tomatoes, garlic, chillies and onions. It gives the Salsa a smoky flavour.
I have already posted a Rava and Coconut Ladoo made with jaggery. Here is a quick, easy and no fail recipe which is ready in exactly half an hour.
1 cup Rava/Semolina
1 cup dessicated coconut
1 cup powdered sugar
12 cardamoms powdered
1/2 cup liquid Ghee/Clarified Butter
12 Cashewnuts halved
2 tbsps kishmish
Heat a pan and dry roast the rava on a medium flame, stirring constantly till it gives its aroma. It should turn a light golden yellow. Tip it into a large sized plate. Dry roast the dessicated coconut just for a minute on a gentle flame and tip that too into the roasted rava. Roast the cashews and kishmish in a tbsp of ghee till the cashews turn golden yellow. Keep aside. Wait for about ten minutes for the rava and coconut mixture to cool. Drop in the roasted dry fruits, powdered sugar and cardamom powder and the liquid ghee. Mix well. Keep aside for five minutes. Mix again, and take a small portion of the mixture. Shape into Ladoos. Store into an airtight container when thoroughly cool.
Chirote or Phenori as it is popularly called by the Konkani community is a delicious preparation of All purpose flour, ghee and powdered sugar. Some prefer to dip the Phenori in sugar syrup. Such a preparation is called Khaja. This item is usually a must during Diwali and is a family favourite. A special thanks to Mrs. Kishori Rao for sharing her wonderful recipe.
250 gms Maida/All purpose flour
1 heaped tbsp Ghee
A pinch of salt
10 cardamoms powdered
30 tsps sugar
12 tsps Ghee
A small bowl of Maida to dust the Phenori
Oil to fry.
Seive the Maida. Drop in the salt and the tablespoon of Ghee. Crumble it well. Make a smooth dough adding a little water at a time to make a dough as for chapati. Set aside for ten minutes. Powder the sugar and cardamom together. Keep aside. Knead the dough for a minute and divide it into ten pellets. Dust the pellet with Maida and roll out five pellets into five thin chapatis. Place a chapati on a flat surface. Apply a tsp of Ghee on the Chapati and sprinkle with a little Maida. Place the second Chapati on top of the first Chapati leaving a half inch gap from the top of the first Chapati. Apply a tsp of ghee and sprinkle a little Maida. Proceed similarly with the rest of the three Chapatis taking care to see that a distance of half an inch from top is left before placing the next Chapati. Once all the five Chapatis are placed one on top of the other, roll them tightly into a log. Cut either ends of the log and keep aside. Cut the log into eight equal pieces. Keep these pieces covered. Gently roll out each piece into a three inch sized poori with a gentle hand. Do not dust it with Maida while rolling it out. Heat oil in a pan. Fry a couple of these Phenoris on a medium flame, taking care to press the pooris down while frying. This helps in opening up the layers. Once they turn a golden brown, remove and drain on a kitchen towel. Allow the Phenori to cool a bit before sprinking with the cardamom, sugar mixture. Finish off with the remaining pellets similarly. This measure gives a total of 16-18 Phenoris. Store in an airtight container when completely cool.