Eggplant/ Brinjal Pulao

An extremely easy to make, delicious one pot meal, the Brinjal Pulav is ready in just half an hour. Serve it with some chilled raita or some sliced onions and a wedge of lemon. Wash it down with a glass of buttermilk… Divine!


Ingredients:

250 gms Basmati rice washed and soaked for twenty minutes.

250 gms Eggplant/ Brinjal/ aubergine cut into quarters leaving the stem intact

2 large onions sliced

1 large potato peeled and cut into fingers

1 tomato chopped fine

2 inch piece ginger

9 cloves of garlic

1 tbsp Everest Biryani Masala

1 tbsp chilly powder

1/4 tsp Turmeric powder

1 heaped tsp cumin powder

1 tbsp coriander powder

Salt

3 tbsps Ghee/ clarified butter

5 tbsps oil

Half a cup of curds

300 ml boiling water

Method:

Drain the Basmati rice and keep aside. Make a paste of ginger and garlic. Heat the oil and ghee mixture in a pan. Drop in the brinjal and saute for a few minutes. Remove and keep aside. Drop in the potato wedges and saute them too for a couple of minutes. Keep these too aside. Drop the sliced onions and ginger garlic paste into the ghee oil mixture. Saute till the onions turn translucent and the raw smell of the ginger garlic disappears. Add the Biryani masala, turmeric, chilly, coriander and cumin powder and roast on a gentle flame for a couple of minutes. Add the tomatoes and keep roasting. Whisk the curds and drop it inside this mixture. Within a couple of minutes the oil starts separating. Immediately add the drained rice and mix well. Pour in the boiling water, the eggplant, potatoes and salt. Bring to a boil, lower heat and allow the Pulav to on an extremely gentle flame. It is ready in exactly ten minutes. Check for salt and serve hot with a mixed veg raita.

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Curd Sevai

Curd Sevai is a quick and easy dish that can be prepared in no time.. all one needs is to tip the rice sevai which is readily available at the grocers, into boiling water. Allow to stand for three to four minutes. Drain and spread in a plate to cool. While the sevai is cooling, one can prepare the curd and the seasoning which goes into it.

Ingredients:

100 gms Sevai cooled

250 ml thick curd

100 ml milk

2 green chillies finely chopped

2 inch piece ginger grated

1 tsp Ghee/ clarified butter

1 tsp mustard seeds

1 tsp urad dal/ split black gram

1 tsp jeera/ cumin seeds

2 sprigs curry leaves

2 tbsps finely chopped coriander leaves

2 tbsps grated coconut

1/2 carrot grated

Grapes halved

Salt

Method:

Beat the curd to a creamy consistency. Pulse the grated ginger, green chillies and coconut and tip it into the curds. Heat Ghee in a pan. Drop in the urad dal.. as it turns golden yellow add the mustard seeds. After they crackle add the cumin seeds followed by curry leaves. Drop the seasoning into the curd. Add the cooled sevai, milk and salt. Mix thoroughly. Finally add the grated carrot, coriander leaves and the grapes. Serve chilled.

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Vegetable Biryani -2

This fragrant vegetable Biryani will leave your guests asking for more.. It is a complete meal by itself and one can serve it with a raita of one’s choice. I usually serve it with a Burhani raita.

Ingredients:

12 medium sized florettes of cauliflower

1 large potato chopped into cubes

2 medium sized carrots chopped into chunks

25 French beans chopped into one inch size pieces

200 gms paneer chopped into cubes

100 gms or one bowl of peas

1 cup thick curds

1 tbsp Coriander powder

1 tbsp Kashmiri red chilly powder

1/4 tsp Turmeric powder

1/4 tsp Shah jeera

7 cardamoms and a piece of mace powdered together

A few strands of saffron

15 mint leaves

Salt

1 tbsp ginger garlic paste

1 small fistful of Barista.

1 tsp Ghee/ clarified butter

250 gms Basmati rice

10 pepper corns

5 cloves

1 bay leaf

1 piece of mace

3 onions sliced and fried to a crisp in a mixture of ghee and oil .

For the seasoning:

Ghee and oil mixture used to fry the onions.

1/2 tsp Shahi jeera

5 cloves

1 large piece of cinnamon

For the saffron infused milk:

1 cup of milk

A few strands of saffron

2 green chillies slit

2 tbsps of the ghee oil mixture in which the onions were fried.

For the Barista:

Heat a mixture of ghee and oil. Fry the sliced onions till crisp and brown.

Method:

Wash and soak the Basmati rice for half an hour. Drain. Drop in a bay leaf, the pepper corns, mace and cloves in a pot of water along with a tsp of ghee and salt. Bring to a roaring boil and then add the drained Basmati rice. Boil it on a high flame for three minutes. Switch off, cover and keep aside for ten minutes. Drain and allow to rest in the colander.

Tip in the chopped vegetables, paneer mint leaves, curds, coriander powder, chilly powder, turmeric, Shahi jeera the ginger garlic paste and a small fistful of Barista. Add salt, mix well and allow to marinate for about fifteen minutes. Heat the remaining ghee oil mixture. Drop in the cloves, bay leaf, Shahi jeera and cinnamon. Once they splutter drop in the marinated vegetables and saute till around seventy percent cooked. Heat a wide pan with a lid. Tip in half of the vegetables into it and spread it. Top it with a layer of rice, the saffron infused milk , Barista and a few mint leaves. Pour the remaining vegetables over this and spread it all over. Again top it with a layer of rice, Barista, saffron infused milk and mint leaves. Cover and cook over an extremely gentle flame till all the flavours are absorbed and the Biryani is completely cooked. Serve hot with raita.

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Ghee Rice

Ghee rice is a popular rice preparation prepared in the South of India and is accompanied by a korma or a spicy curry and raita. It is sans spice though one can add some ginger garlic paste for that slight punch. I have stuck to the original and authentic way of making it.

Ingredients:

250 gms Basmati rice

2 inch piece of Cinnamon

5 cloves

3 cardamom

1 star fennel

1 Bay leaf

10 cashews halved

2 medium sized onions finely chopped

Salt

5 tbsps Ghee/ clarified butter

500 ml boiling water.

Method:

Wash and soak the rice for about twenty minutes. Drain and keep aside. Heat ghee in a pan. Add the whole spices and allow to splutter. Drop in the cashewnuts and roast to a golden brown. Drop in the onions and roast till translucent. Add the drained rice and roast for a couple of minutes. Pour in boiling water and allow it to come to a roaring boil. Cover and cook on a gentle flame till the water has been absorbed and the rice is cooked and fluffy. Uncover and mix with a light hand with a fork. Serve it hot with korma or any spicy curry of your choice. Recipe link to the korma is given below.

Kashmiri Mix Vegetable/ Korma Recipe

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Cabbage Rice

I had prepared some extra Basmati rice the previous evening as I always prefer the rice to sit around for a couple of hours in the fridge before seasoning it. The grains remain intact and the final product looks pleasing.

I decided to prepare a Cabbage rice as per the recipe suggested by my friend dear Smitha Pai. The crunch of peanuts and cabbage makes this rice absolutely delicious!

Ingredients:

1 cup of left over cooked rice

1 large onion sliced

1 small Capsicum sliced

2 cups of cabbage roughly chopped

3 tbsps peanuts

1 tsp chilly powder

A large pinch of turmeric powder

A large pinch of Garam masala

2 green chillies

Salt

3 tbsps coriander leaves for garnishing.

For the tempering:

2 tbsps oil


1 tbsp ghee/ clarified butter

1/2 tsp Jeera/ cumin seeds

A sprig of curry leaf.

Method:

Heat the oil and ghee in a pan. Drop in the cumin seeds and after they splutter add the peanuts. Toss for a few seconds and then add the green chillies , curry leaves and onion. Add salt and saute till the onions turn translucent. Drop in the garam masala, turmeric and chilly powder. Toss and add the capsicum and cabbage. Saute on a high flame till cooked but crunchy. Tip in the cooked rice and mix well. Allow the rice to heat on a gentle flame. Serve hot garnished with coriander leaves.

Copyright © 2021 by Vinaya Prabhu. All rights reserved.

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Methi/ Fenugreek leaves Pulao

The recipe of this one pot meal of Methi Pulao was shared by my friend dear Rekha Pai. It is so fragrant and filled with the goodness of Methi leaves. In fact it needs no accompaniment. I served it with a mixed vegetable raita as the family likes all rice preparations with a curd based side dish. Methi is good for diabetics, so those interested in trying this recipe could replace rice with any of the millets.

Ingredients:

250 gms Basmati rice washed and drained

Salt

500 ml boiling water

Ingredients to be ground to a paste:

12 green chillies

2 garlic cloves

2 inch piece of Cinnamon

5 cloves

5 Marathi moggu ( Kapok buds)

A bunch of coriander leaves

3 tbsps oil

A large pinch of turmeric powder

For the tempering:

4 tbsps Ghee/ clarified butter

15 cloves of garlic finely chopped

2 large onions minced

4 large tomatoes chopped fine

A large bunch of Methi leaves chopped fine

Method:

Heat oil in a pan. Drop in the whole spices. Toss and then add the onions , garlic , green chillies, coriander leaves and turmeric powder. Roast till the onions turn translucent. Switch off, allow to cool and grind to a fine paste. Keep aside.

Heat the Ghee in a pressure cooker. Drop in the onions and garlic and roast to a golden brown. Add the ground paste and roast till it leaves the sides of the cooker. Add the methi leaves and roast till they wilt . Tip in the tomatoes and roast till mushy. Add the washed and drained rice and saute for a couple of minutes. Add salt. Pour in the boiling water , cover and cook to two whistles. Serve hot with a raita of your choice.

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Vagharela Bhaath/ Tempered rice

Leftover rice is usually seasoned depending upon one’s preference. A few vegetables are thrown in and you can either temper it with all the whole Garam masalas, or with garlic and onions or make one just using tomatoes. Posting the recipe shared by my friend Arun Babu…of the Vagharela Bhaath made the way his family prefers it.

Ingredients:

1 cup Basmati rice cooked and ready. Recipe link to making the rice is given below. https://vinayasculinarydelights.com/recipe-to-make-the-perfect-rice/

1 carrot chopped

1potato cubed

A handful of peas

A few cashewnuts halved

2 onions sliced

2 tomatoes chopped

1 inch piece of ginger

5 cloves of garlic

2 green chillies

1 tbsp Kashmiri Lal chilly powder

1/4 tsp Turmeric powder

1/4 tsp Garam masala

For the tempering:

2 small pieces of cinnamon

2 cloves

2 green cardamom crushed

2 tbsps of Ghee/ clarified butter

1 tbsp oil.

Method:

Make a coarse paste of the garlic, ginger and green chillies. Heat the oil and ghee mixture in a pan. Drop in the whole spices and after they splutter add the cashewnuts. After they turn a golden yellow,add the sliced onions and ginger, garlic, green chilly paste. Roast till the onions turn translucent. Drop in the garam masala, red chilly powder turmeric powder and salt. Saute for half a minute. Add the vegetables and mix thoroughly. Add half a glass of water, cover and cook the vegetables till they are firm but done. Add the cooked rice. Mix and heat thoroughly. Serve with a raita of your choice.

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Peas Pulao-2

This variety of Peas Pulao is a Sattvik one. I have already posted one which makes use of onions in this website. Today’s recipe was shared by my friend Usha Nayak and it is every bit as flavourful as the one with onions. Be sure to be a little liberal with the whole spices as this Pulao doesn’t have green chillies as well. The original recipe is the one made in a pressure cooker. I prefer cooking the rice separately as there’s no fear of it getting mushy which does happen if it is not matured rice. Sharing the link below of how to make the perfect rice for Pulao.

https://vinayasculinarydelights.com/recipe-to-make-the-perfect-rice/

Ingredients:

1 cup/ 250 gms Basmati rice cooked and ready.

1/2 cup or 125 gms of frozen peas

3 tbsps Ghee/ clarified butter

2 Inch piece of Cinnamon

3 green cardamom

1/2 big Cardamom

1 star anise

1 large Tej Patha

4 cloves

15 cashewnuts halved

Salt

Method:

Heat the Ghee in a pan. Drop in the spices and the cashewnuts. Roast on a gentle flame till the cashews turn a lovely golden brown. Add the frozen peas and salt and saute for about three minutes. If using fresh peas, make sure you cook them beforehand. Once the peas are done, add the cooked rice, mix well and check for salt. Heat on a gentle flame till the Peas Pulao is heated well. Serve with a mixed vegetable raita.

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Beetroot Pulao

The recipe of this delicious Beetroot Pulao was shared by my friend Jyothi Nayak Kamath. One pot meals are always a blessing since they can be eaten as is or can be served with some curd and a raw salad.

Ingredients:


2 cups basmati rice cooked and ready

2 large onions sliced


1 cup beetroot finely chopped

1/2 cup chopped spinach


1/2 cup green peas cooked

1 inch piece of ginger

5 cloves of garlic

For the tempering:

3 tbsps Ghee/ clarified butter

2 tbsps oil


2 bay leaves

2 cardamom

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp coriander seeds

4-5 cloves

1 inch cinnamon

1 1/2 teaspoon chilly powder


Method:

Heat the Ghee and oil mixture in a pan. Add the bay leaves. Toss. Add the onions and keep roasting till they are translucent. In the meantime powder the cloves, cinnamon, coriander and cardamom. Make a paste of the ginger and garlic. Once the onions turn translucent tip in the ginger garlic paste, the powdered spices, chilly powder and toss for a couple of minutes. Add the beetroot and spinach and saute till they are cooked. Drop in the green peas, rice and salt. Mix thoroughly, cover and heat the Pulao for about ten minutes on a gentle flame.

Serves four.

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Swaminarayan Khichdi

The Swaminarayan sect is the group of people who follow Sahajanand Swamiji also known as Swaminarayan. Hinduism promotes food without onion and garlic as they are considered Tamasic/ creating sloth. This Khichdi is served at the Swaminarayan temples throughout India accompanied by a bowl of seasoned Buttermilk called Vagharela chaas.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup rice/ preferably Basmati
  • ½ cup Arhar daal/ split pigeon peas
  • A handful of groundnuts pressure cooked
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 tablespoons Ghee/ clarified butter
  • 2 tablespoons chopped corriander
  • Salt

Vegetables:

  • 2 medium-sized potatoes – cut into small pieces
  • 1 medium-sized tomato – cut into small pieces
  • ½ cup of mixed vegetables: peas, carrots, capsicum, cut into small pieces.
  • 1 teaspoon ginger-chilli paste.
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 tablespoons ghee
  • Salt

Method:

  • Wash the rice and Dal and soak for 15 minutes
  • Heat ghee in a pan and add the mustard seeds. After they splutter add the chilli-ginger paste, turmeric powder and stir fry
  • Drop in the potatoes and toss for a minute. Add rest of the vegetables and saute.
  • In a pressure cooker heat ghee, add the cumin seeds, mustard, turmeric powder, cloves and the cinnamon stick. Toss. Add the soaked Dal, rice and groundnuts. Pour in four cups of boiling water, the stir fried vegetables and check for salt. Fasten the lid and pressure cook to three whistles. Serve garnished with a dollop of Ghee.


Vagharela chaas:

Ingredients:

1 cup thick curds
1.5 cups of water
1 tsp finely chopped coriander leaves
Salt

For the tempering:

1 tsp Ghee
1 tsp Cumin seeds
2 green chillies minced

Method:

Whisk the curds well. Add water and salt. Heat Ghee in a pan. Drop in the cumin seeds and the green chillies. Saute. Drop the seasoning into the buttermilk. Garnish with coriander leaves. Serve with the khichdi.

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