History of Authentic Mughlai Recipes | India Canteen

In the 16th century, Mughlai recipes originated in the royal kitchens of the Mughal Emperor Babur. Authentic Mughlai recipes were rich and cooked with aromatic spices, nuts, and dry fruits during that time in Indian history. The flavors of Mughlai can range from mild to spicy and are associated with their distinct aroma and use of whole, dried and ground spices.

Evolution & Distinct Features:

The autobiography of Babur named ‘Babarnama’ mention about various Mughlai recipe items including Kebab prepared out of sheep. Authentic Mughlai recipes have an extreme influence on the culinary styles and regional cuisines of present-day India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan and its cooking style are applied in traditional Indian Cuisine, particularly in Delhi and Uttar Pradesh as also in the South Indian city of Hyderabad. The cuisine also marks its influence in Karachi (Pakistan), especially among Muhajir who migrated from different regions of India during the Partition of India and Pakistan. The Mughal cooking techniques also had a deep influence in the Awadh region which eventually led to the development of the Awadhi cuisine of Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh).

The Mughals were Muslims by religion and thus did not eat pork and as Hindus did not consume beef thus meat of these two was not a part of Mughlai cuisine. The primary non-vegetarian dishes would comprise of meat of goat, sheep, and venison. The most special feature of Mughlai cuisine is the unique use of ground and whole spices and the remarkable aroma that gives each dish a different and exotic taste. Extensive use of dairy products like milk, cream, and butter in various gravies and curries makes the traditional Mughlai cuisines quite rich and heavy and also make the dishes mouth-watering with foodies ending up licking their fingers.

Making of Indian Mughlai Food

The making of Mughlai food is likely time-consuming and involves a number of flavored sauces and butter based curries. Nowadays most Indian restaurants convert Mughlai dishes as mild to medium-hot cream and nut-based gravies, rice dishes with lots of nuts, dried fruits, and rich creamy desserts where you should expect spices like cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, and nutmeg. These famous Mughlai gravies pair well with rice and bread.

The Mughlai dishes vary with both vegetarian and non-vegetarian, common dishes that feature traditional Mughlai flavors include biryani, kebabs, kofta (meatballs), pulao (or pilaf), and different tandoori items. Examples of these traditional dishes include Mughlai chicken, Mughlai biryani, Mughlai paratha, malai kofta, reshmi kebab, kadhai gosht, and murg tandoor. A wide range of traditional Mughlai sweet dishes like bread pudding shahi tukra, barfi, kalakand, and falooda.

Let us have a quick look at some of the most famous recipes:-

Popular Mughlai Dishes:

Biryani:

Biryani is a mixed rice made with aromatic spices and seasonings among other ingredients and prepared with great accuracy giving it a yummy and exotic taste. There are two major categories of Biryani like vegetarian and non-vegetarian that vary in ingredients used according to different regions they belong to or according to the meat used. Hyderabadi Biryani is the most famous variety of Biryani, also a signature dish of the Hyderabadi Muslims. The vegetarian biryani is also called Tehari. It was developed so that the Hindu who works for the Muslim Sultans can taste this rice delicacy.

Haleem:


Haleem also known as Khichra is a very famous casserole prepared with wheat, barley, lentils, rich spices, rice, and meat. This dish is cooked very slowly that takes up to seven to eight hours and ensures a fine blend of all the ingredients to give it a perfect paste-like consistency. This dish is a street food and occupies a special place across the globe during the months of Ramadan and Muharram.

Mughlai Paratha:

Mughlai Paratha is prepared with whole-wheat flour stuffed with a mix of ingredients including keema or minced meat, eggs, chopped onions, green chili and pepper among others. This bread delicacy remained among many Mughlai cuisines that made their way to the undivided Bengal and today counts among the most popular heavy snacks items of Kolkata, India as well as in Bangladesh.

Murg Musallam:


Murg Musallam is one of the most exquisite Mughlai dishes that according to sources was a favorite dish of the Sultan Muhammad bin Tughluq of Delhi at that time and also remained popular among the royal Awadhi Mughal families. The dish comprises of a whole chicken prepared with different spices and seasonings with the main ingredients like egg, tomato, ginger, and onion.

Navratan Korma:


Navratan Korma is a vegetarian delicacy from the Mughal kitchen, a vegetarian korma that is prepared out of vegetables, nuts, and paneer. Navratan means nine gems and this dish is usually prepared out of nine different vegetables.

Kebabs:

The origin of the variety of Indian Kebabs that are usually eaten as snacks or starters trace back to the Mughalai cuisine that includes appetizing dishes like Boti Kabab and Reshmi Kebab. Traditionally each of these dishes based on grilled meat has a distinct set of ingredients including an exclusive combination of spices and unique cooking procedures. With time, cooking procedures including grilling and roasting developed in preparing varied forms of kebabs, some of the popular ones being shish kebab, shammi kebab, doner kebab, Tunde ke kebab, and tikka kebab.

Rogan Josh:


Rogan Josh is originally a Persian lamb dish that was brought to Kashmir, India by the Mughals and has now become one of the staples of Kashmiri cuisine. Traditionally it is a gravy dish comprising of braised lamb chunks prepared with browned onions, ginger, garlic, and yogurt and seasoned with spices like clove, cinnamon, cardamom and bay leaves.

Pasanda:

Another delicacy from the royal Mughal kitchen is Pasanda, the name of which is probably derived from the Urdu word ‘pasande’ which means favorite. It is traditionally a rich lamb curry made of lamb legs that are flattened into strips and marinated with ingredients like chili powder, yogurt and a combination of spices for hours. The marinated lamb legs are then fried with other ingredients like onions, coriander, and chilies among others.

Sweet Dishes/Desserts:

Kulfi:


Kulfi is a popular frozen dairy-based dessert that probably originated in the 16th century during the Mughal Empire. The term Kulfi is derived from a Persian word which means a covered cup. It is a mixture of thickened milk seasoned with saffron and pistachios that is frozen in a metal cone and later served with falooda, a kind of noodles prepared from starch, and garnished with pistachio nuts, saffron and ground cardamom.

Sheer Khurma/Korma:


It is a very popular Muslim vermicelli pudding that is prepared during festivals like Eid ul-Fitr and Eid al-Adha. The main ingredients of this dish, the name of which literally means milk with dates, are whole milk, vermicelli, dates, and sugar, while rose water, almonds, raisins, pistachios, saffron, cloves, and cardamom are added depending on the choice of the region.

Firni:

Firni is a kind of rice pudding that is set and served in a shallow earthen dish. This rice-based sweet is garnished with saffron, pistachios and chopped almonds.

Shahi Tukra:

Shahi Tukra is a rice bread pudding that is especially prepared during Muslim festivals like Eid and on the month of Ramadan. The ingredient of this delicious dessert includes bread, dry fruits, and condensed milk and is seasoned with cardamom.

Top 10 Easy Diwali Special Sweets Recipes | India Canteen

Diwali or Deepavali is the special and one of the biggest festival which is celebrated all around India. It symbolises the spiritual victory of light over darkness and good over evil. In India, no celebration is complete without sweet recipes. Diwali is a time of exchanging sweets and gifts. During this festive celebration, all the temples, homes and shops are brightly decorated.

Special sweets are the highlight of every Indian festival. A great variety of sweet recipes are prepared during Diwali. It adds much more enthusiasm to the festive spirit. In this Diwali, light up your kitchen with our festive sweets recipes. Some of these can be prepared in advance and others almost needs no worry, so it can be made 1-2 days earlier.

Your guests will surely give compliments for these ultimate delicious sweets. You just need to spend very less little time in the kitchen to see the bright smiles on everyone’s faces. We bring to you our easy Diwali recipes from across the country:-

  1. Rasgullas:

    Rasgullas are a very special sweet for every occasion. They are round shaped sweet made of chhena, an Indian cottage cheese dough. These milk based desserts are cooked in sugar. Rasgullas originated in Orissa.

  2. Gajar Ka Halwa:

    This mouthwatering dish is prepared in almost all the homes of India. Gajar Ka Halwa is a sweet prepared from carrot and milk. The carrots are grated and then cooked in Milk. Celebrate Diwali with Gajar ka halwa to make the festival a more memorable affair.

  3. Puran Poli:

    Puran Poli, which is also known as Obbattu is a very famous dish that is prepared in Karnataka. It is also very popular in Maharashtra. Obbattu is a sweet and flat bread with stuffing of sweet and coconut. It comes in many varieties including peanut, coconut, sugar, Tur Dal, Sesame seed etc. A pinch of turmeric is added to it to make it look yellowish.

  1. Anjeer Barfi:

    Anjeer Cutlet is a delicious Cashew sweet. It is long cylindrical in shape. Although most people buy it from shops, but it can be prepared at home.

  1. Adhirasam:

    This dish is prepared in Tamil Nadu and it is a traditional sweet of South India. It is made of rice flour, butter, jaggery & cardamom powder which is sprinkled on the top. It is a famous sweet, especially for the occasion of Diwali. The most important part of making the adhirasam sweet is its syrup(paagu). The syrup makes it really tasty.

  1. Mysore Pak:

    Another famous sweet from Karnataka which is very delicious. Its original name was Mysore Pak as it was made from the flour of Masoor Dhal. It was initially prepared for a royal family of Mysore Palace. After that it was renamed Mysore Pak. The dish contains a good amount of Butter, Ghee, Gram flour and Sugar. The sweet is very soft and spongy and it melts in the mouth.

  1. Kaju Katli:

    Cashew Barfi or Kaju Katli is a special Diwali sweet. Kaju barfi is made of sugar and cashew nut powder. It is in the shape of flat diamond. As compared to other sweets, Kaju Barfi is expensive. So, why not make it at home?

  1. Gujia:

    Gujia is a very famous sweet of North India, Rajasthan. It’s a traditional sweet of Diwali made from Maida flour and is stuffed with khoya. It is a special dish, traditionally prepared for Diwali. It is known by different names according to states (for eg. Karanji, Karachika, Ghugra, Kajjikayi etc). In different states, the filling of this dish varies. Like in Uttar Pradesh, the filling is done with sweetened khoya and nuts while in Goa, filling is done with shredded coconut, jaggery and nuts.

  1. Laddus:

    Laddus are small sweet ball Indian sweets basically made with flour, nuts, sugar, jaggery, ghee or depends on its different varieties. A Diwali is incomplete without laddus. They are also available in many varieties like Til Ladoo, Coconut Laddu etc.

  1. Gulab Jamun:

    This list will be incomplete without the special mention of Gulab Jamun. It is made of Khoya, Wheat flour, chenna(pressed milk curd), cardamom and rose water. It is prepared using pure ghee. The name of the sweet Gulab Jamun is derived from Persian word gulab meaning ‘rose water’. The word jamun refers to a fruit of South Asia which is similar in shape and size to that of Gulab Jamun.

    For recipes from all around the world visit>>> http://tastyfix.com/

Top 5 Healthy Soups to keep you warm in Winter

A Soup has the power to do what a medicine or a therapy never can – soothe and relax you in an inexplicable way when you’re down with cold, cough and fever. It’s by far the most comforting and delicious food, not to mention, healthy too.

Nothing is more comforting than a bowl of hearty soup on a chilly day, especially when it’s ready in 20 minutes or less. In this early winter season, we bring you five different kinds of Indian soups that will keep you warm in this weather. In this list all the soups benefits you differently and each one is unique in flavor.

  1. Pepper Rasam:


    Winters are synonymous with common cold and cough. Besides right medication, it is necessary to consume comforting and effective foods. The spices in Pepper Rasam and the ingridients in this soup help in digestion and soothe your senses, and therefore is a perfect recipe for incessant sneezes and running nose.

    How to prepare : Method

    1. Soak the tamarind in a cup having warm water in it, extract its juice and throw away the pulp. Grind small amount of cumin seeds, pepper and garlic for a few seconds in a mixer.
    2. Take tamarind extract, add chopped tomatoes, turmeric powder, crushed pepper, cumin, garlic, salt and curry leaves. Boil them together.
    3. Once it is starting boiling, keep the flame low and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the raw smell of the tamarind goes off.
    4. Heat a table spoon of ghee and add mustard seeds in it.
  2. Lemon Coriander Soup:


    Lemon is a very rich source of vitamin C, which in turn to helping in build immunity from cold and cough during winters. Take this soup hot in the evening for a comforting experience.

    How to prepare : Method

    1. Cut all the vegetables into triangles (optional) , blanch and refresh.
    2. Prepare coriander stock with fresh coriander and water.
    3. Add cleaned prawns cut in to dices.
    4. Add salt, lemon juice and white pepper according to taste.
  3. Miso Soup:


    The nutrients in mushrooms are different and having high number of protein and other nutritions from those of other vegetables and provide the vitamin B, folate, pantothenic acid and also biotin. Mushrooms also contains D group of Vitamins that helps keep bones strong and fights several disease. Mushroom Nimbu Ka Ras is a brilliant comibination of health and flavour!

    How to prepare : Method

    1. Heat some oil (ghee) in a pan, add mushroom and cook till it gets dry.
    2. Remove mushroom, and add garlic, onion in the same oil, and sauté.
    3. Add water and bring it to a boil.
    4. Adjust Heat, add spring onions, cream.
  4. Murgh Makkai Shorba:


    This soup contains Corn that is an excellent source of fibre, potassium and baby corn kernels are source of folate. When combine with chicken, Murgh Makkai Shorba makes for a soup rich in health as well as taste.

    How to prepare : Method

    1. Heat some oil(ghee) in a pan, add garlic, cumin seeds.
    2. Add garlic and saute, corn paste and cook.
    3. Add chicken and cook, adjust heat.
    4. Yoy may garnish with chopped coriander, and chicken dices.
  5. Carrot and Beetroot Soup:


    This soup contains beetroot that is rich calcium, potassium, iron, folic acid, fiber and also anti-oxidants and in the other hand carrots are an excellent source of A group of vitamins. Beetroot also helps in cleaning the kidneys and gall bladder. The darker the orange carrot, the higher is the beta carotene. Carrot and Beetroot also very beneficial for children as it benefits their vision, skin and immune system.

    How to prepare : Method

    1. Heat small amount of oil (ghee).
    2. Add bay leaf, cumin and ginger to it.
    3. Add chopped carrot, beetroot and green chillies. Cook the stuff for 5 minutes.
    4. Add water. Once its starting getting boil, strain and make a puree. Adjust the heat.
    5. Strain the puree. You may garnish it with diced beetroot and carrots.

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Sharad Navrati Special Recipes 2018 | India Canteen

Sharad Navratri 2018 is almost here, and one look around is enough to tell how eager all are to welcome the season of festivities. The word ‘Navratri’ means ‘nine nights’ in Sanskrit. It is that festive time of the year when many pray, observe fast and worship ‘Goddess Durga’. Goddess Durga has 108 Names and 9 Avatars that are worshiped in these 9 days, one on each day. During this festive season people give up non-vegetarian food and many others also try reducing intake of onion and garlic from their meals.

Celebration means every day you would get to relish on a different kind of delicacy. So Here we have Navrati Special recipes with ingredients, nutrition values and method to prepare. You can enjoy these recipes and tingle your taste buds during these fasting days:

  1. Sabudana Khichdi:


    Sabudana Khichdi is an easy to prepare dish. It is a commonly made recipe during fasting season as it is a healthy recipe and delicious too if prepared properly. This recipe is considerably easy. It takes a well experienced cook to get the nice texture in the sabudana pearls.

    How to Prepare: Method

    1. Heat the oil in a pan and then add cumin, hing & curry leaves.
    2. When they sizzle, add chopped potatoes and saute for 2 minutes after then add chopped tomatoes & green chilli and cook well for few minutes.
    3. Add salt, turmeric, chilli powder, garam masala, sugar and coriander and mix it well again. Remove water from sabudana and mix it well in the pan.
    4. Add some peanut powder & chopped ginger
    5. Mix everything slowly & cook for 3 minutes. Add lemon juice in it Garnish with coriander.

    Delicious khichdi is ready. Enjoy it

  2. Makhana Kheer:


    Makhana Kheer is the simplest and in the most delicious recipe to make. Its creamy and beautiful texture tastes delicious whether served hot or cold. Rich in protein and calcium, makhana (fox nut/ lotus seed) combines beautifully with low-fat milk to make a creamy and delicious kheer.

    How to Prepare: Method

    1. In a large vessel, pour in the milk, break the makhanas into smaller pieces, add them to the milk and let it boil gently for about 30 to 45 minutes without covering it, till the milk start boiling down and the seeds looks softy.
    2. Add sugar according to the taste and stir for a few more minutes.
    3. Add small amount of pistachios, almonds, saffron and cardamom powder, cook it well again.
  3. Navratri Kaddu:


    Kaddu (Pumpkin) is loaded with lots of nutritions and is often used in prasad/bhog or at home. Kaddu Ki Sabzi is one of the popular dishes prepared during Navratri fast and it pairs well with chapati and poori. It’s sweet and tangy taste can not be compared with any other vegetable.

    How to Prepare: Method

    1. Peel the pumpkin and then scoop out the fibres, seeds in the centre before cutting it into cubes.
    2. Heat the oil in a kadahi and add coriander, chili powder, turmric powder and cumin seeds. When they begin to splutter, add the ginger and salt.
    3. fried till lightly coloured and add the pumpkin.
    4. Stir-fry on high heat till it looks glossy then add garam masala, amchoor powder and sugar. Mix well.
    5. Reduce heat, cover and simmer till cooked through. Stir 3-4 times. Then garnished with chopped coriander leaves.
  4. Crunchy Potatoes:


    During Navratri, Crunchy and crispy potatoes topped with green chutney and curd – so flavorful and delicious!! One of the most favorite finger food of children and adults alike! Crunchy and crispy potatoes make snacking look good. These are easy to eat as well as easy to cook.

    How to Prepare: Method

    1. Wash and peel the potatoes then boil the potatoes in pressure cooker.
    2. Take one whistle in pressure cooker. Once potatoes become warm. Dice them in cubes.
    3. Heat small amount of oil (ghee) in a pan, deep fry the diced potatoes till crispy and golden. Remove them on an soaking paper to remove excess oil from it.
    4. Sprinkle red chilli powder, cumin powder and salt immediately after removing on soaking paper.
      Serve hot.

    Note: You may use Rock Salt instead of regular salt while fasting

  5. Banana Walnut Lassi:


    Try making this super easy and healthy Banana Walnut Lassi to give your Navaratri mornings a boost of health and have a great day ahead. Celebrate this auspicious occasion with fun, grandeur and with delicious & healthy food recipes.

    How to Prepare: Method

    1. In a food processor or mixer add greek yogurt, whey powder, walnuts, chestnut honey and bananas.
    2. Blend it well till smooth and creamy.
    3. You may garnish it with chopped walnuts.

    Its done, Enjoy !!

History & The Secrets Behind ‘Jalebi’ | India Canteen

Jalebi is a crispy, crunchy, juicy Indian dessert that can be best described as funnel cakes. This sweet street food can beat the taste when dipped in cold curd and it will surely make you run for a single bite, jalebi is found across India and also in Iran, Africa, West Asia and many more countries.

It is fried in the hot oil, using a cotton fabric cloth and carefully soaked in the sugar syrup. It would not be wrong to say that the process of making jalebis is no less attractive than the final product on your plate. You can have jalebis alone, or with a samosa but best combination is with creamy rabdi. A glass of piping hot milk or chilled milk with crunchy hot jalebis is a popular breakfast in several cities like Haridwar and Indore.

Did you know your favourite dessert recipe i.e Jalebi that you see across all sweet shops or morning breakfast shops in your city is not Indian but a West Asian or a Persian import?

Yes, you heard us Right !!

Our very own crispy, hot and sweet jalebi is not an Indian recipe but we have made it our own. Originally it is a version of sweet dish “Zolabiya” or “Zalabiya”.

Zalabiya is a festive dessert in iran, enjoyed by everyone during the iftar parties of Ramzaan. In 13th century, Muhammad bin Hasan al-Baghdadi (writer) collected a total of about 260 recipes of that time and highlighted them in his cookbook, ‘Kitab al-Tabeekh’, where ‘Zalabiya’ was mentioned for the first time.

In the 15th century, the makeover of Jalebi from Zalabiya happened when the Jain author Jinasura talked about it first time in the famous holy writ called ‘Priyamkarnrpakatha’ . In his holy writ it is said that jalebi was introduced to the Indian subcontinent by our not-so-friendly Persian Turkic invaders. According to The Hobson-Jobson Anglo-Indian dictionary, the Indian word Jalebi is derived from the Arabic word zulabiya or the Persian zolbiya with the onslaught of Turkish and Persian traders. From 15th century till today, this sweet dish began to be known as Jalebi and became a compulsory part in festive occasions, weddings, Indian breakfast and even temple bhog/prasad.

The preparation of Jalebis is considerably not so difficult. In a large pot whisk refined flour, yogurt and sufficient water to a smooth and pouring consistency batter. Cover and keep in a warm place to ferment for minimum 1 day. Transfer the batter into a jalebi cloth, gather the edges and make a tight potli. The cloth filled with the batter is squeezed with adequate pressure from top to make concentric circles turning them over gently a few times, till they are evenly golden and crisp, and than transferred to the sugar syrup, which sometimes may also contain hints of saffron (for the perfect orange hue). Once the jalebis soak the sugar syrup for 2-3 minutes, take them out of the syrup and they are ready to serve hot.

This dish is not to be confused with similar sweets and variants like Imarti, Paneer Jalebi, Mawa Jalebi, Afgaan Jalebi etc.

The Story Behind “Butter Chicken”!!!

Butter Chicken, which is one of the richest dishes of India is prepared with succulent pieces of chicken that are dipped in a combination of cream, spices and tomatoes. This popular dish is a culinary success that is a treat for the palates throughout the world. The dish, which is known as Murgh Makhani in Hindi is a very popular dish of India that is prepared around the world. Although this dish is a favorite throughout the country, few Indians know how butter chicken originated.

Photo Courtesy: GoodtoKnow

How and When was “butter chicken” created?

The story of butter chicken starts with the evolution of delicious tandoori chicken. The latter originated in Gora Bazaar, Peshawar where a man named Mokha Singh Lamba started a restaurant 100 years ago. A young chef in the restaurant by the name of Kundan Lal Gujral wanted to do an experiment, so he started skewering yoghurt marinated pieces of chicken and cooking them in a tandoor, which was used for making breads in the past. And thus, the popular dish called “tandoori chicken” was created.

Kundan Lal Gujral
Photo Courtesy: Inextlive

The dish, which is prepared by the heat of clay tandoor has fragrant and flavour of smoke coming out of hot coals. The version of the dish which was prepared by Gujral was prepared with crispy skin and exterior that is bright red. The dish became a huge hit until Gujral was forced to leave Pakistan during 1947 partition.

When Gujral came to Delhi, he found a restaurant named Moti Mahal which is located in Daryaganj. At that time, there was a lack of refrigeration facilities due to which Gujral had to innovate again and avoid wastage, especially the tandoori tikkas that were unsold. He came to conclusion that tomato gravy, which is filled with butter and cream would soften his leftover chicken. The combination was a huge hit and thus by accident, this delicious dish came into being.

Photo Courtesy: Flickr

The trick behind this mildly spiced recipe is a combination of tangy tomatoes and rich dairy. Gujral created a dish that was going to be a hit. Gujral then went ahead to create Dal Makhani which is another great dish that has similar preparation.

During the 1950’s, the Moti Mahal was very popular among celebrities and world leaders like Zakir Hussain, Richard Nixon, Jawahar Lal Nehru and J.F. Kennedy. The first education minister of India i.e. Maulana Azad told Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi that he must visit the Taj Mahal in Agra and Moti Mahal in Delhi. And thus, he became one of the most renowned patrons of Moti Mahal.

The butter chicken became so popular that many other restaurants came up with their own versions of this classic dish. This resulted in different variations like Chicken Lababdar, Mumbai-style Murgh Makhanwallah and Chicken Tikka Masala.

The chicken lababdar is prepared by mixing makhni gravy and onion masala, which is used in Mughlai dishes. To lend a creamier, richer taste to the dish, you must add ingredients like poppy seeds, almonds, cashew nuts or char magaz(which is a combination of 4 seeds/nuts: pumpkin seeds, almonds, watermelon seeds and cantaloupe seeds). These ingredients give creamier and richer taste to the dish.

Chicken Lababdar Photo Courtesy: Hotel Welkin Residency

Another great variant is chicken tikka masala, which is a gravy dish that contains tikka chunks, cream, combination of tomatoes and spices. This version is basically butter chicken without bones. Tikka which means ‘bits and pieces’ refers to boneless chicken that is marinated in spiced yoghurt and cut into small pieces and baked in tandoor.

In the year 2001, chicken tikka masala was named ‘British National Dish’ by Robin Cook(Foreign Secretary). This resulted in a fierce debate on the origins of this popular dish. Some people believe that the dish was invented by first Mughal emperor, Babur, who was afraid that he would choke on chicken bones. So, he ordered his chefs that they should remove them.

Chicken Tikka Masala Photo Courtesy: Food Network

Zaeemuddin Ahmad, who is a chef at Karim Hotel, Delhi said that the recipe of tikka masala has passed through generations of his family. The recipe, according to him originated during the reign of Bahadur Shah II(1837-1857).

In the 1970s, chicken tikka was ordered at Sheesh Mahal by a British man. When it arrived, the man complained that it was very dry. So, the owner of the restaurant, Ali Aslam Ahmed tossed a tin of canned tomato soup on the tikka and added some yoghurt and spices and thus, this popular dish of Britain came into being.

Chicken Tikka Photo Courtesy: Al Barakah Halal Meat & Deli

The butter chicken, with its many equally-delightful variants are a perfect example of the fact that best things in life are discovered by accident. Little did Kundan Lal Gujral know that when he invented Butter Chicken, he was creating history. Without his experimenting, we would not have known Butter Chicken, Dal Makhani or Tandoori Chicken.

Shradh (Pitru Paksha) Special Satvik Recipes 2018

Special Satvik Food is prepared and offered to the ‘Brahmins’ during Shradh/Pitru Paksha period; it is believed that whatever is given to them reaches to our grandparents. Shradh, also known as Kanagat in North India, begins on the last full moon day of the Hindu month of ‘Bhadrapad’. This year Shradh/Pitru Paksha will end on October 8th, 2018.

Pitru Paksha 2018 started on September 24th, 2018. Hindus across India are observing this 15-day Shradh in order to pay homage to the grandparents, especially through offering special food to them. This period is referred to as mourning period. In this 15 days Shradh period, Hindus avoid eating non-vegetarian, smoking and drinking alcohol food as it is considered inauspicious. It is generally advised to follow a simple diet and avoid preparing lavish feasts. Some people avoid onion and garlic in their food as well, however, there are many who don’t follow this ritual any more.

We list down some simple satvik dishes that you can consume during this entire period.

  1. Cocktail Kheer:

    Kheer is a sweet recipe prepared with carrots and milk. The combination of these ingredients make this dish yummy. The tasty fruits will also add to the flavor and texture of the kheer and add some dry fruits for some crunch.
  2. Pudina Rice:

    Pudina rice is a peppery flavored mint dish that is easy and quick to prepare. Refreshing taste of the rice will not need any accompaniment unless you want to add some yogurt in it. This healthy and simple dish does not require garlic or onion, so you can prepare it any time of the day during pitru paksha.
  3. Kaddu ki Sabzi:

    The combination of kaddu ki sabzi and poori is awesome. An easy and light recipe cooked thoroughly in a variety of masalas, you wouldn’t have to necessarily cook it with onions and garlic. Kaddu ki sabzi (pumpkin) and poori is the best during this period.
  4. Dal Palak:

    Dal Palak is just the right dish because spinach comes in this season. It is thinner in consistency, simple yet tasty. A warm and delicious dish with the goodness of lentils, spinach and mild spices, you can easily skip the ginger-garlic addition in the recipe.​
  5. Guar ki Phali:

    Guar is available now and is very easy to make. It is cooked with spices and yogurt. You wouldn’t have to spend a lot of time to prepare it. Combine moong dal or toor dal with it to make your meal wholesome.
  6. Bajre ki Khichdi:

    Khichdi made with bajra and moong dal can be a wholesome lunch for you. This recipe does not need any garlic or onion and can be made quickly. A small amount of ghee (a drop) on top will make it taste even better.
    A warm and comforting khichdi can be a complete lunch for you.
  7. Thapi Vadi:

    This traditional and tasty recipe is known by many names in different parts of Maharashtra. It is known as Masvadi , Patavadi, Besan Vadi, Pithlyachi Vadi. This snack, when combined with curry can also be served as a main dish.
  8. Shradh Special Thali:

    Last but not least, Brahmin food is very important on the day of Shraddha in the Father’s side. According to the scriptures, on the day of Shraddh, the fathers themselves present themselves as Brahmins and take food. Therefore, every devotee should make a Brahmin feast in the house on the day of Shraddha of his ancestors.

    These simple dishes are not only seasonally delightful but will also keep the essence of Shradh or Pitru Paksha intact; that is to keep it satvik and vegetarian.

Top 10 Famous Bhog Recipes To Offer Lord Ganesha | India Canteen

Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the most celebrated festivals in India. Originally it was associated with the states like Maharashtra and Karnataka but now it is celebrated all over India. Lord Ganesha, the lord of wisdom and prosperity, remover of obstacles and sorrows is welcomed with too much devotion for this 10 day celebration. During this festival, all the sweet shops line their counters with delicious variety of desserts like modaks, barfis and ladoos. For this 10 days celebration, devotees shower their beloved deity with the variety of prasads, bhog, and sing hymns in the Lord Ganesha’s praise. Through this festive season devotees prepare different type of favourite recipes of Ganesha on daily basis to please their beloved God. We enlist some popularly prepared bhog during this festive season of Lord Ganesha.

Here we have some famous and delicious bhog recipes offered to Lord Ganesha:

  1. Motichoor Ladoos:


    Motichoor laddos are favorite food of Lord Ganesha that is served as prasad after pujas. The word ‘motichoor’ literally translates to crushed pearls. These ladoos are so delicious and yummy having round shape made from fine, tiny balls of besan. This sweet recipe is associated with states like Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.

  2. Steamed Modak:


    Steamed Modak is a traditional prasad that is also considered to be one of the favourite dish of Lord Ganesha that makes for a decadent sweet dish and for this reason Ganesha is also known as Modakpriya. These dumplings are made with rice flour dough, stuffed with sweet coconut, jaggery, nutmeg, cardamom and saffron.

  3. Puran Poli:


    Puran Poli is a sweet dish that has roti made of maida stuffed with sweet lentils and jaggery.  A popular dish in Maharastra, this makes for a delectable snack. Several Maharashtrian households offer bhog of Puran Poli to Lord Ganesha during these 10 days of celebration to seek his blessings.

  4. Ghee Rice:


    Ghee Rice is a famous prasad in Karnataka that consists of milk, cardamom, ginger-garlic, bay leaves & cloves that enhance the flavour and gives a rich taste along with generous amounts of clarified butter. Ghee rice is a perfect dish to accompany any type of curry recipe on any occasion.

  5. Peda:


    Pedas are also served after puja during Ganesh chaturthi and no compilation of bhog or prasad is ever complete with this favourite festive treat of India. These milk based soft and delicious balls are flavoured with pistachios and cardamom to give a perfect rich taste.

  6. Rava Ladoo:


    Rava Ladoos are another popular festive dish that are prepared during this time. These ladoos are a popular choice and most households have at least one variety ready to welcome their guests. Rava ladoo is a simple and easy recipe but still exotic made with roasted rava, coconut, ghee, sugar and nuts.

  7. Shrikhand:


    Shrikhand is a famous & healthy sweet recipe made of strained yogurt, and is popular across Maharashtra and Gujarat. It is topped with chunky nuts and raisins. This Ganesh Chaturthi, prepare bhog of shrikhand to offer your beloved Lord Ganesha with this delicious and all-time favourite festive treat.

  8. Fried Modak:


    Fried Modak is deep fried modak recipe with sweet, chewy coconut stuffing and very crispy and crunchy from outside covering. It is served to Lord Ganesha during these festive days.

  9. Chana Dal Burfi:


    Chana dal burfi or katli is another special sweet dish from Goa. These are so delicious in taste and melt in mouth with a hint of cardamom. This burfi made with soaked and ground chana dal flour, roasted patiently in ghee, is cooked into a delicious barfi with hot milk.

  10. Nariyal Ke Ladoo:


    To make the festival of Ganesh Chaturhi sweeter, Nariyal Ke Ladoo is a simple North Indian recipe that you can make easily for your family at home. This mouth watering sweet recipe is a great treat for those with a sweet tooth.

Spices: There Origins & Varieties

In the Middle Ages, Europe was attracted to East which was very exotic and fascinating. One of the main reasons was due to spices. Due to rich spices available in India, there was a lot of competition between Dutch, English and French as each of them wanted to control trade and politics in India. It can be rightly concluded that spices were one of the reasons why Europeans migrated to India.

Spices like black pepper, cloves, cinnamon etc. are available at a cheap price now. But, in the past they were as expensive as silver and gold.

According to archeologists, it has been found that in primitive times humans used aromatic plants for flavoring. The primitive human used sweet-smelling spices for making food taste good. The primitive people offered different types of aromatic herbs to primitive gods and used spices for healing. And from there on, spices have become a very significant part of our life.

Spices are one of the early reasons why globalisation took place. Before the European voyages, the trade of spices was very prominent. In Europe, the demand for pepper was so great that it resulted in voyages of Vasco Da Gama and Christopher Columbus. This demand for aromatic food and flavours is still present today and is at the core of trade that is done today.

In this article, we have covered top 10 spices that add flavour to modern Indian and European food:-

  • Cumin

     

    Photo Courtesy: Aapni Dookan

    Cumin is mainly produced in India. It amounts to almost 70 percent of world’s production. Cumin is used very frequently in spice mixes and adds smoky flavour to Indian dishes. You can identify Cumin by its intense fragrance and distinct ridged brown seeds. Cumin can be confused with anise seeds, caraway and fennel but it differs from them in terms of colour and taste. Cumin is best used freshly ground.

  • Cardamom

     

    Photo Courtesy: شرکت آغاز دانه سپاهان

    Indian cooking uses 2 kinds of cardamom i.e. green and black. The green variety of cardamom is more commonly used. It is used in spice mixes, lassis and Indian desserts. It has sweet and light flavor with mild note of eucalyptus. Green cardamom can be used to prepare spice mixes like garam masala. You can also use cardamom seeds in sweets by crushing the seeds, thus providing fragrance.

  • Clove

     

    Photo Courtesy: Natural Factors

    Many Indian dishes use clove, which is a common spice used in Indian cooking. The flavor of the cloves comes from essential oils that they contain. Cloves are basically flowers and a lot of their oil is taken out before they are dried. Cloves can be used as a whole or can be blended into spice mixes.

  • Black Pepper

     

    Photo Courtesy: Ahimsa Oils

    Black pepper is mainly found in India in Malabar region and Western Ghats. It is hard to grow this spice as it depends on natural cycles like rainfall. Like most spices, one needs to toast black pepper before blending.

  • Coriander

     

    Photo Courtesy: PradeshJagran

    Coriander is one of the most popular spices of India. It is one of the oldest spices in the world. It is golden-yellow in colour and has gentle ridged texture. The seeds are aromatic and have citrus flavor.Many spices are prepared using whole coriander.

  • Mustard Seeds

     

    Photo Courtesy: Ghati International

    Mustard seeds are brown, black or yellow in color. They are frequently used in Indian cooking. When mustard seeds are crushed or cooked in oil, the flavor of mustard gets released. It is a staple ingredient of many curries, curry powders and mustard oil. It is commonly available in North India.

  • Fenugreek

     

    Photo Courtesy: Looks Forever

    Fenugreek is a spice that lends a very earthy, musky curry fragrance. The seeds of fenugreek are yellow and look like wheat kernels. The leaves of Fenugreek are dried and can be used as spices. They are also known as kasuri methi. They give butter chicken its unique flavour.

  • Turmeric

     

    Photo Courtesy: Cooking Worlds

    Turmeric is one of the most common Indian spice. It is grown as a rhizome and can be used fresh or dried. It has been shown to have a lot of health benefits and is used with many curries and spice mixes.

  • Saffron

     

    Photo Courtesy: Cercals & Pulses

    Saffron is one of the most expensive spices of the world. It is more valuable than gold because of the fact that it needs a lot of labor to produce. Saffron is actually the stigma of crocus flowers and is best picked by hands. The color of best saffron is dark red an originates from Kashmir, Spain, and Iran. Fresher saffron have deeper color. Saffron has unique flavor and fragrance.

  • Cassia Bark

     

    Photo Courtesy: iStock

    Cassia bark is also known as Chinese cinnamon. It belongs to the family of cinnamon tree. Cinnamon differs from cassia and is also known as “true cinnamon”. Cassia is cheaper to produce when compared to other spices. The majority of ground cinnamon is prepared from cassia bark. Cassia has milder flavours as compared to cinnamon and can be used in large quantities.

Top 10 Street foods of Chandigarh | India Canteen

Chandigarh is full of beautiful places to eat but you would not wait for a second to realize that you get the best Punjabi foods in Chandigarh. Just think of it, the spicy butter chicken, the stuffed parathas, tandoori kebabs, creamy chaats, chilled lassi, fluffy bhature… the list can go on and on. You get the best of street food in dhabas and eateries in Chandigarh that are known for their impeccable service and menu.. To help you choose the top ones, we have chosen the most popular street food in Chandigarh, and where to find them. The list of top 10 is as follows:-

  1. Chaat:


    The chaats have so many dishes like Papdi Chaat, Bhel Puri, Pani Puri, Bhalla Papdi, Aloo Tikki, Ragda Patties, Kachori and others. They have a delicious filling of sweet and saucy chutneys, flavored water, mixture of potato, onions, corn, sprouts, pulses and other vegetables, topped with dahi or curds, and garnished with herbs.

    Where to eat:

    Garg Chaat, Sector 23
    Ram Chaat Bhandaar, Sector 34
    Rehri in Sector 8 Market
    Krishna Chaat Bhandaar, Sector 34
    Rehri Outside, Sector 19 Gurudwara
    Thakur Chat Point, Sector 40-C

  2. Chole Bhature:


    A must-have when in Chandigarh, Chole Bhature combines the richness of gravy-laden chickpeas with that of the fluffy bhature. When eaten together, they form an essential North Indian dish, which can be had anytime, morning breakfast, lunch or dinner. The bhatures are cooked on tandoors or clay ovens and can be plain, or with a filling of paneer or potato.

    Where to eat:

    Sai Sweets, Sector 22 B
    Cholle Bhature, Industrial area phase 1
    Sindhi Sweets, Sector 17
    Gopal Sweets, Sector 35-C
    Baba Dairy, Sector 21C
    Roadside StallS (Khirki/Rehri)

  3. Paneer Tikka:


    This tandoori street food is famous in India, even more in Chandigarh. Paneer cubes are char-grilled on skewers and served with mint chutneys and other sauces. Other vegetables like capsicum, tomatoes, are also added to the paneer.

    Where to eat:

    Chaplin Fast Food, Sector 34
    Tikka Freaks, Sector 8-B
    Mom’s Kitchen, Sector 22B
    Barbeque Nation, Sector 26
    Sai Sweets, Sector 22 B

  4. Momos:


    The steamed momos have become a favourite street food for people of Chandigarh. Momos is essentially a Tibetan dish, having bite-sized dumplings filled with vegetables or meats, and served with spicy sauces and a variety of chutneys

    Where to eat:

    Dumpling Hood, Sector 9
    Rehri Market, Sector15
    Yo China, Phase-5 Mohali
    Kathmandu Chinese Fast Food, Sector 15D
    Rohit Chinese food Patel market, Sector15
    A1 Dumplings, Sector 35

  5. Spring Rolls:


    Another Chinese favourite, Spring Rolls are deep fried pancakes, rolled and filled  with veggies or meats, and served with various sauces and chutneys. It is a street food that is light on the stomach but dripping with flavour and aromas.

    Where to eat:

    Toshib Fast Food, Sector 34 C
    Pashtun Restaurant, Sector 35-B
    Roll Xpress, Sector 36
    Khokha, Sector 9
    Lava Eat n Wrap, Sector 8-B

  6. Amritsari Kulcha:


    An eternal North Indian dish, Amritsari Kulcha is prepared of refined flour, stuffed with a range of stuffing like paneer, cheese, potatoes, and prepared on a clay tandoor, and served with chole, chutneys, pickles and curries. They are the best street food of Chandigarh.

    Where to eat:

    Kulcha Hub, Sector 4
    Bansal Amritsar Food Street Sector 4, Panchkula
    Sodhi’s Zaika, Sector 46C
    Amritsari Kulcha Hub, Sector 9
    Amritsari Kulcha & Channa, Sector 9 Panchkula
    Student Canteen/ Stu C, Sector 14 (Punjab University)

  7. Lassi:


    This famous Punjabi lassi is best enjoyed chilled in the hot summer months. Favourite among people of Chandigarh, Lassi is a yoghurt based drink, prepared with fruit and spices, and garnished sometimes with flavours and other toppings.

    Where to drink:

    Pal Dhaba, Sector 28D
    Gopal Sweets, Sector 8 and Sector 35
    Sindhi Sweets, Sector 17 and Elante Mall
    Baba Dairy, Sector 21C
    Shiv Mishtan Bhandar, Sector 18C
    Talwar’s, Sector 15

  8. Sarso da Saag & Makki di Roti:


    A dish synonymous with Punjab, it has won the hearts, or stomachs, of millions across India. Sarso or mustard greens is prepared with various Indian spices and eaten with flat cornbreads or Makki di Roti. It is an essential food of Punjab, best eaten in the winter season, as it gives warmth and plenty of nourishment. In Chandigarh, you get these at famous dhabas and various other eateries.

    Where to eat:

    Pal Dhaba, Sector 28D
    Amritsari Kulcha & Channa Sector 9, Panchkula
    Katani Dhaba, Sector 15
    Nukkar Dhaba, Sector 32
    Pakwan Meal, Sector 14

  9. Parantha:


    Nobody makes parathas better than the North Indians. In Chandigarh, you get the best Parathas with loads of butter and served with curries, pickles or raitas. Parathas are made of wheat flour and come in different varieties like plain, butter, cheese, paneer, keema, various herbs, dals, and others.

    Where to eat:

    Pehalwan Parantha Point, Sector 22-D
    Pal Dhaba, Sector 28D
    Katani Dhaba, Sector 35D
    Gurbax Dhaba, Pahalwan Paratha Point
    Delhi Special Pranthe Wali Gali, Sector22A

  10. Chicken Tikka:


    Chiken tikka is a famous street food in Chandigarh, Chicken Tikka is made by marinating pieces of chicken in spices and yogurt, then put on skewers and baked in a tandoor, having vegetables and flavoured with spices, and served with mint chutney, and other sauces.

    Where to eat:

    Pehalwan Ji da Dhaba, Sector 15D, Rehri Market
    Tikka Freaks, Sector 8-B
    Mughlai Rasoi, Phase 3 Mohali
    Pik n Move, Sector 8B
    Singh Chicken Corner, Sector 22C, 22B