Paneer Bhurji (Cottage Cheese Scramble)

This is more of a soul satisfying food for me. Whenever we have excess milk leftover at home, i always end up making paneer (Cottage Cheese) out of it. It makes for a good dry curry that can be had with even hot rice or paranthas, naans, roti , with bread or as a stuffing for sandwiches…and what more it resembles and tastes like egg scramble with just a touch of chicken masala added into it (My crazy idea!). I use toned milk at home to make my paneer, however if you use full fat milk or any other variety of milk it may yield more creamy paneer.


To Make Paneer:

Milk : 1 Litre

Lemon Juice or White Vinegar: 4 tbsp

Method: Add the milk to a large saucepan and bring it up to a boil. Once it starts boiling, lower the heat and gently add the vinegar or lemon juice. It will curdle instantly. Stir once thoroughly and switch off the heat. Strain the curdled milk into a cotton or muslin cloth and let it drain the water completely. Place the drained paneer still in the cloth under a heavy container for 3/4 hours to press it down completely and drain the water out. Later, remove from the cloth, cut and use as per your need or simply crumble it with your hands for making this paneer bhurjee.


For the Paneer Bhurjee:

Crumbled Paneer: 200 grams

Oil: 3 Tbsp

Cumin Seeds: 1 Tbsp

Large Onion Finely Chopped : 1

Ginger Garlic Paste: 1tsp

Green Chilies Chopped Fine: 3 (Add more for spicy kick)

Finely Chopped Tomatoes: 2

Fresh or Frozen Green Peas : 1/2 cup

Finely Chopped Green Capsicum: 1 Large

Red Chili Powder: 1 Tbsp

Turmeric Powder: 1 Tsp

Coriander Powder: 1 Tsp

Garam Masala: 1 Tsp

Salt: To Taste

Kasoori Methi: 2 pinches

Water: 1/4th Cup

Fresh Coriander Leaves: For Garnish



In a deep bottom pan, add the oil and heat it up. Add the cumin seeds and let it crackle, followed by the onions. Turn the onions pink cooking on moderate heat and add in the ginger garlic paste and green chilies chopped. Saute for a minute till the raw smell goes off. Next add in the dry spice powders, salt and mix well. Cook this until the raw smell of the spices goes off. Next add in chopped tomatoes, green peas, chopped capsicum and water. Mix well, cover and cook with the lid on for 5-10 minutes. The water will avoid the masala from burning quickly. Once the masala has cooked and water is almost evaporated, add in the crushed kasoori methi followed by the crumbled paneer. Adjust the salt and mix well. Cook with the lid on for 5 more minutes, just enough for the paneer to cook in the masala. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves.

Serve hot with roti, phulkas or even with pav or (butter toasted) bread if you like!

Happy Cooking!


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Three Ingredient Coconut Cookies


Coconut and a Malayali cannot be too far from each other. Coconut features in our food, in our hair oil, as a healing oil for chapped skin etc. It is also used as a base for certain Ayurvedic medicines as well. Simply put it, we cannot survive without it!

In Mumbai,  I don’t have the luxury of using coconut in my daily cooking since its expensive and you need buy it from the grocers every time unlike in Kerala, where you just go to your store room and pick a coconut from the hundreds which are stored there from the home grown backyard coconut trees. Hence i tend to use desiccated coconut often for my cooking adventures including these quick and delicious easy peasy cookies. They take just 3 ingredients to make and taste divine too!


Dessicated Coconut Powder: 200 grams

Condensed Milk: 3/4th can to a whole can depending on the sweetness

Vanilla Extract: 2 tbsp

Sugar Sprinkles or Cherries (Optional)

Lined Baking Tray


Take the desiccated coconut powder and add it to a bowl. Add in the condensed milk and vanilla extract. Mix well and leave aside for just 5 minutes. Grease your palms with a little butter and take lemon sized portions of the coconut mixture. Roll into a ball and flatten slightly with both your palms. If using sprinkles, make a small dent in the center of the flattened cookie with your finger and add the sprinkles into it, pressing it down gently so that it sticks to the cookie. If you are using cherries, cut one cherry into two. Take one half of the cherry, placing it on the flattened cookie and pressing it down on the cookie gently to stick. Arrange them all in a lined baking tray/ cookie sheet.

Bake at 160 C for 20/25 minutes, or at 180 C for about 15 minutes. Cool and store.



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Homemade Schezwan Sauce

I absolutely love the schezwan sauce that’s served with Chinese food (in India :p) . Hence picking up chings schezwan sauce was a habit everytime I hit the supermarkets. However since the las…

Source: Homemade Schezwan Sauce

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Homemade Schezwan Sauce


I absolutely love the schezwan sauce that’s served with Chinese food (in India :p) . Hence picking up chings schezwan sauce was a habit everytime I hit the supermarkets. However since the last few months I have been kinda fed up of buying it off the shelves. So a few months a moment of madness that comes to me late at night (wonder why that happens!) I tricked my poor husband into peeling some garlic for me. Job accomplished….I set about making this sauce which came about in hardly 30 minutes.  Its thick..gooey.and with just the right punch of garlic,ginger and chilli to keep those taste buds tantalising. Using kashmiri chillies helps in keeping the colour a deep red and yet just mildly piquant. Tomato sauce and soya sauce added in gives it that tangy salty flavour with just the mild hint of sweetness. This goes well as a spread for sandwiches…rolls…as a dipping sauce or just about anything.  I have removed the seeds from whole dry chillies before soaking them….so I don’t have too many seeds in the final product…though its personal choice.

Heres how to make it.

Whole dry kashmiri red chillies – 250 grams seeds removed and soaked overnight in hot water

Garlic – 200 grams peeled
Ginger – 50 grams peeled

Soy sauce – 1/3 cup
Tomato ketchup- 1/2 cup
Salt – to taste
Oil- about 1/4th cup

Remove the seeds from the chillies and soak for 3 or 4 hours or overnight in hot water. Next grind it into a smooth paste with as little water as possible and keep aside. Next chop the ginger and garlic as finely possible..or just pulse in a food processor.  It should be in a course form..and not a paste. In a non stick pan..add the vegetable oil and add the add the ginger and garlic..and cook without coloring it for 2 minutes.   Then add in the chilli paste and mix well. Adjust salt and cover and cook for around 3 or 4 minutes. Remove the lid and cook on low heat for 10 to 15 minutes. Then add in the soy sauce and tomato ketchup and mix well. Cook for 10 minutes or until the oil starts separating from the sides. Adjust all the seasonings a final time and switch off the heat. Cool and store in airtight jars.

PS . I have adjusted the ketchup and soy sauce until it was to my liking. Hence you may need more or less. .depending on your palate. I did add 2 pinches of msg (totally optional) for a more robust flavour. I have to say… tasted way better than the store bought ones.


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Moong Daal Laddoo


With Diwali being just around the corner…there’s festive mood in my house. I eagerly wait for the Diwali gift box that comes from my husband’s office which contains assorted nuts and dry fruits. And its the perfect time to make sweets and mithais. So this time around..I made Moong Daal Laddu. I found myself free suddenly one day late night and made these for my husband. These are very simple laddus and tastes so yummy! I have made smaller laddu since these are almost just one bite-size. The effort is minimal and the result is these divine beauties.

Moong Daal -1 cup
Sugar -1/2 cup to 3/4 cup (more if u need it more sweet)
Ghee -1/ cup melted and measured
Broken cashews -3 tbsp +extra for garnish
Cardamom powder – 2 tsp

Dry roast the moong daal until is golden color. It can burn easily so keep an eye on it. Once its dry it down and grind it to a fine powder. Take a thick bottom pan or kadhai and add 3 tbsp of ghee from the 3/4 cup ghee mentioned above. Fry the cashews in it and keep it aside. I suggest to cool the ghee used to fry the nuts in the kadhai itself and then add the moong daal powder into it. Mix it up well. Add the rest of the ghee into it little by little followed by the nuts. Mix it all well and allow to cool enough to handle with your hands. Add the powdered sugar and cardamon powder and mix well with your hands. Roll it into the size of laddu that u wish with your palms. These will yield about 16 to 18 smaller or 6 medium size laddoo. I made smaller ones good for just one bite. Store in air tight container which has some ghee applied inside. Else it may stick slightly as it cools down and the ghee in it solidifies.

P.S Dry roast the moong daal a little more than golden brown. I adjusted ghee till I got the consistency I was looking for.

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Pasta with Desi Twist


In my 100% Malayali household, spicy food is the norm.  Our sambar, kootu curries, gravies all are spiked with either red chili powder or green chilies. My mother and father are both ardent fans of spicy food.  And so I too grew up accustomed to eating hot spicy food. However, when I started cooking I was more experimental than my mother. She cooked food typical of Kerala which was yummy. However I was more inclined to experiment and try other dishes. When I made pasta in white sauce, everyone liked it since it was salty and cheesy. But then, a second pasta dinner had my dad saying that the food is bland… :P. His Malayali taste buds were demanding something spicy. So the next time, I tried pasta with all the Indian flavors.  This recipe has all our classic Indian masalas, which actually goes well. It is filling, and yummy!

Recipe: Serves 2

Recipe: Serves 2

Fusilli: 200 grams

Sliced Onion: 1 large

Chopped Tomatoes: 2

Ginger Garlic Paste: 1 tbsp

Fresh/Frozen Green Peas:  ½ cup

Capsicum: 1 large cut into strips

Cummin/Jeera: 1tsp

Kashmiri Red Chili Powder:  2 tsp

Pepper Powder: 1 tsp

Turmeric Powder: 1tsp

Garam Masala: 1 tsp

Whole dry Red Chilies: 2

Oil: 2 tbsp

Salt : To Taste

Shredded Cheese: ½ cup (Optional)


In a large pot, add in lots of water and season it with salt. Once it is boiling add in the pasta and cook until the pasta is al-dente. Once it is cooked al-dente, strain the pasta and run it under cold water to stop the cooking process. Add a drizzle of oil to the pasta to avoid it from sticking. Now heat oil in a large pan and add in the cumin/jeera seeds. Once it splutters, add the onions and cook until its softened. Now add the ginger garlic paste, and cook for a minutes. Add in all the dry spice powders and cook for a minute until the raw aroma goes off.  Now add in the tomatoes and season with salt. Cook until the tomatoes are almost mashed up and oil starts to separate from the edges.  Add in the chopped capsicum and fresh peas n cooked until just done. You can also add chopped carrot, mushroom or blanched broccoli to the pasta, at this point. Mix all the veggies and pasta well. Mix in the cheese if using, only then adjust the seasoning as there will be some saltiness from the cheese. Serve hot!



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3 Ingredient Cheesecake!!!


Presenting my 3 Ingredients only Cheesecake. Since the time I saw this on a blog and the video on YouTube…I knew it was my kinda cheesecake that had to be tried. I was restless to try it. Its the easiest recipe of a cheesecake EVER!! All it needs is white chocolate, cream cheese and eggs. This recipe has been on a worldwide roll since it was posted YouTube by Ochikeron. A water bath under the cake while baking prevents it from cracking up..and this is one cake that you don’t want to have cracks on! The whipped egg whites and white chocolate give it a rich flavor! Bake it. .set it in the refrigerator and have it. And this little beauty will take home the show!


Cream Cheese: 120 grams softened to room temperature

White Chocolate: 120 grams

Eggs: 3 nos

Spring Form Cake Tin:  Greased and lined with parchment paper.

Boiling Water:  1.5 cups (for water bath while baking)

Large Tray: To place underneath the cake pan while baking


The key to making any cheesecake is to use ingredients at room temperature. This cake here requires the same rule.

Start by separating the egg yolk and the egg whites.  Keep the yolks aside and whip the egg whites to a stiff peak consistency. Keep the whipped egg whites in the refrigerator until required in the recipe. Now chop the white chocolate into smaller pieces and melt over a double boiler or in the microwave. Make sure to not burn the chocolate if using the microwave. Once the melted chocolate has cooled, add in the cream cheese and mix well. Now add in the 3 egg yolks and mix well to combine. Next add 1/4th of the whipped egg white into the chocolate-cheese-egg yolk mixture and mix well to loosen it up. Now add the rest of the egg white and fold in gently to avoid deflating the air in the egg whites.  Once it’s all mixed in well, pour the batter into the greased and lined spring form tin and place the spring form into larger tray filled with just about an inch or less of hot water. The hot water prevents it from cracking on the top while baking. Bake at 180C for about 15 minutes, and reduce the temperature to 160c and bake another 30 minutes. Check after 30 minutes, and if the center is just slightly wobbly…it’s done!

Remove it, cool a bit and set in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours to set. Once set, it is ready to serve!

P.S: Spring form pan is best here to make cheesecake as it’s easy to remove. I used aluminium cake pan in heart shape, hence it was slightly tricky to remove it from the pan after it cooled in the fridge. There is no need to add extra sugar in the recipe as the chocolate’s sweetness is enough.

Happy Baking!


Recipe Credits:  Ochikeron ( Ochikeron’s Blog)

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