Archive for cumin seeds

Whole Mung Beans with Yogurt

Posted in Dahl, Uncategorized, Vegetarian with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 7, 2013 by ninasnosh

photo 4

The humble mung bean holds so many surprises, if cooked right it tastes superb, it’s low in cholesterol, good for detoxifying and high in protein. This dish can be made with or without natural yogurt, the yogurt give it a tangier flavour.


Serves 4 people if there is another dish to accompany.

For the vagar:

  • 2 tbsp of sunflower oil
  • 1 tsp of cumin seeds
  • 1/8 tsp of hing
  • 2 curry leaves

And the rest:


  1. Place the mung beans and chopped tomatoes in a pressure cooker with 3 cups of water (pic.3)
  2. Cook the mung beans in the pressure cooker for about 10 minutes – allowing the cooker to release steam around 4 times (pic.4)
  3. Carefully release the steam and open the pressure cooker to check that the mung beans are firm but cooked through
  4. If you don’t have a pressure cooker just boil the mung and tomatoes until cooked
  5. In a large saucepan heat the oil for the vagar
  6. When the oil is hot add the cumin seeds, hing and curry leaves
  7. After 15-20 seconds remove from heat
  8. Add the yogurt and spices to the vagar, return to a medium heat and stir (pic.6)
  9. Add the cooked mung bean and tomatoes
  10. Next add enough water to cover the beans (pic.7)
  11. Simmer the ingredients for 10-15 minutes on a medium heat, stirring occasionally
  12. The mung bean should be fully soft but not mush, add more water if needed while cooking, see pic 8 which shows the final consistency of dish.

pic.1 spices



pic. 2 mung beans and tomatoes

photo 1

pic.3 ready to cook

photo 2

pic.4 cooked

photo 5

pic.5 yogurt

photo 4

pic.6 yogurt in vagar

photo 1

pic.7 ready to simmer

photo 2

pic.8 finished

photo 3

Can be eaten on it’s own or with indian bread, roti or rice.

Recipe: Spinach

Posted in Lunch, Recipes, Vegetarian with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 30, 2012 by ninasnosh

I made this spinach dish a couple of weeks to accompany one of my potato dishes. It’s easy, delicious and very healthy. I also love eating this spicy spinach in a sandwich –  beats ham or cheese any day.


For the vaghar:

  • 1 tbsp oil
  • pinch of fenugreek seeds

The rest:


  1. Heat the oil and add the fenugreek seeds to toast for 30 seconds or so
  2. Add the finely sliced onions to the oil, cover pan with a lid and cook on a low heat for 3 to 4 minutes – onions should be soft but not brown
  3. Next add all the spices and spinach, cover the pan with a lid to allow spinach to wilt
  4. After a minute or so remove the lid and stir the spinach and spices
  5. Add 2-3 tsp of water, stir
  6. Now on a low heat cook the spinach , simmering with the lid on for around 15 minutes – stirring regularly
  7. Add more water if you need to but you shouldn’t need much as the spinach itself will release water
  8. Taste the dish whilst it is cooking to ensure you are happy with the seasoning and spices

Of course spinach does not take 15 minutes to cook but simmering it will allow the flavours to infuse gently leaving you with really tasty dish.

Serve with another indian dish, eat with roti.




* you can use larger spinach leaves but should cut off the stalks and chop up

Chicken Dinner ……

Posted in Chicken, Recipes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 13, 2012 by ninasnosh

On Tuesday night I made this lovely chicken dish using my delicious ‘rich tomato sauce’.


This will feed at least 4 people.

You will need a good sized pot to fit a whole chicken and the potatoes – I always use my le creuset.

  • Rich tomato sauce
  • 1 large free range chicken skinned and cut up *
  • 3 medium size potatoes peeled and cut up into roast potato size pieces


  1. Follow the ‘rich tomato sauce’ recipe
  2. Once the sauce is ready add the prepared chicken, stir in, cover the pot and cook on a low heat for 5 minutes
  3. After 5 minutes add some hot boiled water to thin out the sauce and cover the chicken
  4. Simmer the chicken for a further 25-30 minutes on a low heat
  5. Then add the potatoes and simmer until they are cooked (about 10 minutes) – add more water if required
  6. Turn off the heat when the potatoes are done – leave to rest for 10 minutes (be careful not to over cook the potatoes they will continue to cook while you are resting the dish)
Serve with roti, bread or rice.

* if you prefer not to use a whole chicken you could use skinned drumsticks, skinned thighs or chicken breast. The dish tastes great which ever part of the chicken you use but by using a whole chicken or meat on the bone the dish is far more flavoursome!

Tangy, Spicy Lemon Pickles

Posted in All about food, Pickles, Recipes, The Pantry with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 12, 2012 by ninasnosh

After 3 weeks of sun and sitting my ‘Lemon Pickles’ are perfectly pickled. We opened the jars yesterday for a taste test and they have exceeded my expectations when it comes to flavour. They are tangy, sour, spicy and sweet all at the same time.

Pickles are perfect for serving with poppadoms, dahls and other vegetarian dishes. You can chop them up smaller or serve them as they are. The sauce is so delicious that sometimes I even have some of it on bread or a roti.

I have transfered the pickles into a clean jar – this will prevent the formation of a white mould (which is harmless). Store the pickles in a cool dry place or fridge – they will last for months.

Indian Chips ……

Posted in Recipes, Snacks, Vegetarian with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 21, 2012 by ninasnosh

There are not that many people out there who don’t like chips so if you like spicy food these have got to be a winner.


1. Peel and cut the potatoes into even sized chips then soak in cold water
2. Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan (preferably one that has a lid)
3. Once the oil is hot add the mustard seeds and cover the pan with a lid
4. Once the seeds have popped remove the pan from the heat
5. Now add the hing and allow it to sizzle for a few seconds before you add the rest of the spices
6. Mix the spices all together to form a paste in the oil – return to a medium heat
7. Drain the potatoes and add to the pan – make sure the pan is hot but not too hot that the potatoes burn
8. Carefully mix the potatoes so that the spicy paste covers them
9. Cook the potatoes on a medium heat turning every few minutes so they are cooking evenly – keep the lid off for about 10 minutes
10. Cook with the lid half on for about 10 minutes – do not completely cover as you don’t want them to go soggy
11. You want the chips to be nicely brown and cooked through before you serve…
I only use as little oil as I can get away with – as you can see from the picture my chips were not oily. By soaking them in water, making sure the oil was hot enough when cooking and cooking with the lid partially off I ensured they were both cooked and crispy.

Look what I’ve got marinading for tomorrow…

Posted in Chicken, Recipes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 10, 2012 by ninasnosh

Got some friends coming over for lunch tomorrow so decided to marinade this chicken overnight so it’s extra tasty. ‘Oven Chicken’ is a fuss free dish that I won’t have to watch over tomorrow while I’m busy catching up with some old friends.


Vegetable Roti

Posted in Recipes, Snacks, Vegetarian with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on May 21, 2012 by ninasnosh

We’ve had a very busy month and I have been less than attentive to my children’s eating habits! Realising I had been dishing out a lot of pasta (homemade sauce of course) and fish fingers  – I decided to make some vegetable roti as a heathy snack.

These are a wonderful snack and you can pack them full of almost any vegetable you have lying around. You make a spicy or a non-spicy version so they are perfect for kids. If I ever feel like my kids aren’t eating enough veg I roll out a few of these and they are eaten faster than I can cook them. They are also great to take on a picnic or if you want something tasty to pack when you are going on a long journey.


  • 1 & 1/2 cups of Atta (chappati/roti flour) – you can buy this in the supermarket
  • extra bowl of Atta for dusting
  • 1 medium potato cooked in the microwave – skinned and chopped up roughly
  • 1/2 cup of frozen peas – cooked
  • 1 carrot chopped up and cooked
  • 1 tbsp of oil
  • 1 tsp of sesame seeds
  • 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds
  • 1 heaped tsp of ground cumin and coriander ( 2 parts coriander to 1 part cumin)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp fresh masala (optional – only if you want the spicy version)
  • 1/4 tsp chilli powder (optional – only if you want the spicy version)
  • small bowl of oil and teaspoon for cooking
  • boil some water in the kettle


  1. Cook the potato in the microwave, skin and chop up roughly
  2. Boil the peas and carrots
  3. I didn’t do this because I was being lazy but I would generally advise roughly chopping the peas and carrots in a chopper/blender once they are cooked
  4. Heat a heavy based frying pan/tawa on a low heat
  5. In a large bowl add the Atta and oil – rub the oil through the Atta using your finger tips
  6. Next add the rest of the ingredients to the Atta – vegetables, seeds and spices
  7. Using your hands bind the mixture together to form a dough
  8. The liquid from the vegetables should be enough to bind it together but you may need to add some boiled/hot water to help you bind it together
  9. The dough should be soft, smoothish and not dry
  10. Divide the dough into 3/4 golf ball sized balls
  11. When ready to roll out the roti – roll the ball in your hand to smooth and squeeze it between your 2 palms to flatten
  12. Coat each side in atta to help when you roll
  13. On a lightly floured work surface or rolling board gently roll the roti – using a narrow rolling pin if possible
  14. The roti should be round and about 5mm thick  – but don’t worry this will come with practice and as long as it’s even it’s a good start

To cook

  1. Place the rolled out roti on to  the heated pan
  2. Turn heat up slightly
  3. Cook on the first  side for about 7 seconds
  4. Flip over to cook on the other side 10-12 seconds
  5. While it’s cooking on the second side dip a teaspoon in the bowl of oil and rub it on to the roti
  6. After 10-12 seconds turn it over and rub the other side with oil
  7. Cook for a further 10 seconds – turn over cook for a couple of more seconds and remove from the pan
  8. The roti should be nicely toasted and not oily – adjust cooking time if needed
  9. The roti is now ready to eat

I roll and cook at the same time. If this your first time making anything like this it would probably be a good idea to roll a few (or all) then cook.

Remember you can use other vegetables – sweeet potato (pre-cook), broccoli (pre-cook), spinach, methi, etc

Keema Mutter – the healthier version

Posted in Recipes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 23, 2012 by ninasnosh

This very tasty minced lamb/mutton dish with peas is commonly known as Keema Mutter. Tonight however, I cooked the healthier version using turkey mince.


Serves 3 – 4 people

  • 1/2 quantity of  tomato based sauce
  • 500g lean turkey mince
  • 2 cups of frozen peas
  • boiled water from the kettle
Serve with steamed rice


  1. Please see tomato based sauce recipe and make half the quantity for this dish
  2. Once the sauce is ready add the turkey mince and cook through for about 5 minutes
  3. Add frozen peas to the mince
  4. Add about 2 cups of hot water from the kettle to the mince – stir and simmer with the lid on for 20mins stirring every few minutes
  5. If required add more water during cooking – the dish should be a little runnier than a bolognese sauce
This can be served with steamed rice, roti or naan bread.
This is a great example of when a frozen portion of the sauce would come in handy for a quick weekday meal!

Recipe: Spicy tomato chicken drumsticks (and potatoes)

Posted in Chicken, Recipes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 19, 2012 by ninasnosh

I was strongly leaning towards making ‘Oven Chicken’ with the drumsticks we had in the fridge but decided to try something slightly different. We’d  already got dhal and guvar left over from yesterday so I didn’t need to worry too much about having vegetables to go with it – so this is what I ended up with.


As with any dish you marinade I’d advise marinading at least a few hours before hand to get the best results.

  • 8 free range chicken drumsticks – skin removed
  • 2 large potatoes – peeled and cut up in small roast potato sized pieces
  • 2 1/2 tsp of ground cumin and coriander (2 parts coriander, 1 part cumin)
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp fresh masala
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp cooking salt
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree/paste
  • 1 1/2 tbsp canola/sunflower oil


Pre-heat oven to 175 degrees (fan assisted)

  1. Place the prepared chicken and potatoes into a large mixing bowl (I just mixed in the oven dish)
  2. Place all the spices, salt, oil and tomato puree into a small bowl and mix together
  3. At this stage you should taste the marinade before adding to the chicken – it should be tangy and spicy so if you think it needs it, add more spices etc to adjust the flavour
  4. Now pour the marinade onto the chicken and potatoes – use your hands mix through well
  5. Lay the marinated chicken and potatoes evenly in an oven dish
  6. Cover with foil – ideally leave in the fridge for a few hours to marinade
  7. Cook in a pre-heated oven of around 175 degrees (fan assisted) for approx an hour
  8. Check to see if the chicken and potatoes are cooked
  9. Remove from oven and rest for 5 minutes (with the foil still covering the dish)
  10. Serve with salad, left overs and indian bread

chicken and potatoes


marinaded chicken and potatoes


Posted in Recipes, Vegetarian with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 6, 2012 by ninasnosh

Well I was a little distracted yesterday and kind of forgot to go shopping for today (Good Friday) and of course the supermarkets are all closed.

One of the staple things in my fridge is fresh tomatoes, so take a look at what I’ve produced with next to no ingredients.


Spicy, Tangy Tomato Soup

served with steamed rice and a poppadom


Serves 3 people for a light meal

  • 4 large fresh tomatoes – finely chopped/or chopped in a chopper
  • 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds
  • 1/2  tsp of fresh masala
  • 1 1/2 heaped tsp of ground coriander and cumin
  • 1/4 tsp of turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp sunflower/canola oil
  • 1-2 cups of hot water
Make 2 cups of rice to accompany this soup.


  1. In a medium size saucepan heat the oil
  2. Once the oil is hot add the cumin seeds and brown in the oil
  3. Take the saucepan off the heat once the seeds have browned – you will smell the cumin seeds!
  4. Add the tomatoes carefully – they will spit as the oil is hot
  5. Stir the tomatoes, return to the heat
  6. Add all the spices, stir and simmer with lid on for 5 minutes to cook through
  7. Taste to see if you are happy with the flavour and add more spices/seasoning if required
  8. Add boiled/hot water to the tomatoes to thin out the soup – initially 1 cup then add more if you want it thinner
  9. Simmer for another 5 minutes with the lid on
  10. You can either eat this straight away or heat up later – serve with rice
before you add water

after you add water