Aug 21, 2018 No comments:

Tarkari Pulao ~ InstaPot Version

Vegetable Pulao is my all time avenue to go when i need comfort and spicy food in a jiffy! Now with Instant Pot this becomes even quicker! :-) One fine day when the weather turned out good and cooler ( 90 in DFW ;-)) during summer hot days + when my vegetable garden gave one vegetable of each kind, then this Tarkari Pulao happened in my kitchen under 15 min! The name sounds fancy but 'Tarkari' in Hindi means Vegetable, so it basically is Vegetable Pulao, but I added variety of veggies today including Greens that I got from my garden and made this in IP, that is done under 15 min. Here is the recipe for you, enjoy!

Basmati Rice - 2 cups (I use Zafrani Brand, available in Costco)
Onion - 1 medium
Green Chili - 2 ( long ones, that are not very spicy)
Potato - 3 (small round ones)
Carrot - 1
Tomato - 1
Amaranth Greens - 1 cup (optional)
Mint Leaves - 1 Tbsp (Chopped)
Cilantro - 1 Tbsp (Chopped)

Pulao Spices:
Clove - 2
Cinnamon Stick - 2 ( 1 inch)
Cardamom - 1
Shazeera - 1 tsp
Marati Moggu - 2
Bay leave - 2

Oil - 2 Tbsp
Salt - 1 tsp (or adjust to your taste)
Coriander Powder - 1/2 tsp
Garam Masala - 1 tsp (You can use Homemade or try Store bought)

Gadgets you need:
Instant Pot (IP Duo Mini 3 Qt)

Preparatory Steps:

  • Chop Onion and Green Chili length wise into long slices. Chop Potato into cubes. Trim edges, peel carrots and chop into 1 in long sticks or cubes. Chop tomato to cubes. 
  • Wash Basmati rice thoroughly and drain in colander and set aside. 

  1. Turn on IP and keep in Saute mode, set time to 5 min. Add vegetable oil to IP pot, add all Pulao spices in the order given in list. After 1 min, add green chili, onion slices, Amaranth Greens, Mint Leaves, Cilantro and mix everything.  After 2 min add Potato, Carrot and Tomato Cubes. Saute for 2min. Now add salt, coriander powder and garam masala spices. Add 1.5 cup Water for each cup of rice (total 3 cups of water for 2 cups of rice) to pot and mix everything well. Add Basmati rice to Pot and mix everything well. Taste water and adjust the salt and seasonings as per your taste.
  2. Now Cancel the Saute mode in IP, keep the IP in Pressure Cook (or Manual) mode and set timer to 7 min and close the lid. (Click start button if you have Ultra IP). After 7 min done switch off the IP by removing the plug and let it for 3 min and do QR (Quick Release).  Fluff rice with fork from upside down and mix gently. Then transfer to wide plate and serve warm immediately with Aloo Kurma and/or Onion Raita. 
Here is the sequence:
Before you close IP
After 7 min done
After fluffing up rice with fork gently

Oh man, this tuned out super delicious! Give it a try all you need is 15 min on hand and big appetite! :-)


  • I have used my 3Qt mini to make this recipe, the same settings and time should work for any version of IP. 
  • This recipe yields 3 to 4 servings, you can easily double or multiply ingredients to make big batch for larger crowds.

Hope you have enjoyed this quick win, Will be back with more IP recipes, stay tuned!
Until next time, Take Care, ba bye,

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Jul 8, 2018 No comments:

Rotisserie Chicken Masala Rice ~ Fusion Recipes

My daughter loves Rotisserie Chicken, when she tags along with me for a grocery trip at Sprouts, she insists me to buy the Rotisserie Chicken. Though we enjoy the Rotisserie Chicken as a family,  we won't be able to finish the whole bird in one shot, kids don't show interest to eat it in second meal. So i convert the left over Rotisserie Chicken into Masala Rice, that does magic at the dinner table in this new Avatar! Since the rotisserie chicken is so tender and soft, it adds very nice flavor to Rice, and a touch of masala spices makes it zesty and delicious. I call it Win-Win recipe, here is the recipe, Enjoy!

Rotisserie Chicken Masala Rice

Rotisserie Chicken - 2 Cups (pull apart chicken pieces with bones)
Cooked Basmati Rice - 3 Cups
Veggies - 1 Cup (frozen, optional)
Onion - 1 medium
Green Chili - 2 medium
Oil - 2 tbsp
Crushed Red Pepper - 1 tsp
Masala Spices -  (Cinnamon, Clove, Star Anice, Shazeera, Bay leave)
Salt - 1 tsp (according to your taste)
Biryani Masala Powder - 2 tsp

Preparatory Steps:
  • Chop Onion and Green Chili length wise. Thaw veggies and microwave for 1 to 2 min.
  • If you are using left over cooked rice, crumble the rice in a wide plate, until each grain gets separated from each other with no lumps. 

  1. Heat Wide Pan on stove, add Oil. Once Oil is hot, add Masala Spices, followed by crushed red pepper. Saute for 1 min, so that oil gets infused with spices. Add onion and green chili slices to pan and mix with spices, saute for 2 min. 
  2. Add chicken to pan and mix gently until it is coated with spices. If you are adding mixed veggie add to pan now and saute with chicken and spices.
  3. Add salt and Biryani Masala to pan and mix with chicken and veggies.
  4. Add cooked rice to pan and mix gently up side down until rice is combined with chicken and spices. 
  5. Simmer for 3 to 5 min in low heat. Taste and adjust salt as needed. 
  6. Top with chopped mint or coriander leaves and switch off the stove. Serve warm immediately  and enjoy this fusion chicken rice as it is!

  • Veggie addition is optional in this recipe, if you don't like adding veggie in your chicken rice you can totally eliminate that with out losing much flavor. :-)
  • I add veggie as I am veggie lover and they add nice natural color to this rice. 

Will be back with another Fusion Recipe, 
Stay Happy and Keep Smiling, Bye until next time!

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Apr 17, 2018 No comments:

Kung Pao Chicken ~ Simple Recipes (Under 15 Min)

I love Kung Pao chicken as this is one Chinese dish loaded with spicy flavor on Chinese Menu that suits my Indian Tastebuds. :-) I always go for this dish on the Panda Express Menu for a take out. Though I love this dish, never experimented thinking the recipe might be complicated. But when I tasted this at one of our friends house, it was mind blowing and exactly tasted close to Panda Express Kung Pao Chicken. My friend is generous enough to share the recipe and assured it is very easy and perfect as quick appetizer on the menu to please your guests or crowd. This recipe calls for all simple ingredients that are readily available in your pantry, But Hoissan Sauce is the critical ingredient to get the authentic taste in this recipe. Make sure that you have that sauce handy before you try this recipe. Here is the recipe, Njoy!

Chicken Breasts - 2 medium ( 1 lb)
Soy Sauce - 1 Tbsp
Corn Starch - 1 Tbsp
Salt - 1/2 tsp
Black Pepper - 1/4 tsp

Soy Sauce - 2 Tbsp
Hoissan Sauce - 1 Tbsp
Red Chili Sauce - 2 tsp ( i have used sriracha)
Brown Sugar - 1 /4 tsp

Oil - 1 Tbsp
Garlic - 1 tsp ( chopped, minced)
Ginger - 1 tsp (chopped, minced)
Green Chili - 3 ( chopped finely) - Optional
Whole Red Chili - 5 to 6 ( medium size)
Green Bell Pepper - 1/2 medium (2 Tbsp)
Red Bell Pepper - 1/2 medium ( 2 Tbsp)

Peanuts - 1/4 cup

Preparatory Steps:

  • First cut chicken breast into small pieces, wash and add them to medium bowl. Add salt and black pepper rub it well to chicken pieces. Add 1 Tbsp Soy Sauce and 1 Tbsp Corn starch to the bowl, mix well until all chicken pieces are coated well. Cover the bowl with lid and let it sit aside allowing chicken to marinate.
  • Take a small bowl, add all the ingredients under Sauce section in that order. Whisk well and keep it aside. Kung Pao sauce is ready.
  • Mince Garlic and Ginger and keep them ready
  • Chop green chili into small pieces.  Chop Green Bell Pepper and Red Bell Pepper into medium size cubes. 
  1. Heat stove, place a wok or wide pan on the flame and add 1 tsp oil to it. Once the oil is hot, add peanuts to the pan and saute for 3 min until nuts are roasted. Take them out, transfer to wide plate allowing them to cool, once they are cooled, roughly chop the peanuts and set aside. 
  2. In the same pan, add marinated chicken and cook on both sides until chicken gets tender and soft. (probably takes 5 min). Once chicken is cooked transfer them to a plate.
  3. In the same pan, add remaining oil to it. Add minced garlic, ginger and chopped green chili. Saute for couple of min, then add Whole Red Chili and saute for couple of min, now the oil gets infused with all the spices. 
  4. Now add chopped bell pepper cubes and mix with spices. Then add sauteed chicken to the pan mix well with veggies. 
  5. Pour the Kung Pao Sauce on all over the chicken and veggies in the pan. Coat chicken well with sauce on all sides. Keep the flame on high and stir-fry for 2 min. 
  6. Top with chopped roasted peanuts and switch off the stove, transfer to wide plate and serve hot immediately. 

  • This dish tastes good when it is hot, serve immediately when it is hot. If it gets cooled off, heat it up once before you serve to guests.
  • This can be paired with any vegetable fried rice or noodles or even this tastes good as it is and can be served as Appetizer. 
  • It is better to add nuts in a separate bowl and add right before you serve it, otherwise nuts become soggy in the sauce and loose crunchiness.  
  • If you have nut allergies you can totally skip peanuts and can replace with sesame seeds to add some crunch. 

Enjoy this exotic yet simple recipe,
take care until we meet here again

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Feb 4, 2018 1 comment:

Chocolate Zucchini Loaf Cake

This easy Chocolate Loaf Cake is super moist, chocolaty and delicious and one of a kind, you will never know this is made with a green vegetable 'Zucchini'!

Making a Bread with Zucchini is pending on my 'Recipe to Try' list form long time. Finally one fine day, when I am set to empty the veggies in my fridge, then this recipe happened to make use of all of that zucchini. This loaf cake turned out super chocolaty, moist, delicious with very less effort. More over this recipe calls for minimalistic ingredients that are readily available in your pantry. I see this recipe happening many more times in my kitchen from now onwards (just like my eggless chocolate cake recipe), given that I have a house full of chocolate lovers! Here is the recipe, Njoy!

Adapted from: Two Peas and their Pod

All Purpose Flour ( APF) - 1 cup
Cocoa Powder - 1/2 cup ( Unsweetened)
Baking Soda - 1 tsp
Salt - 1/8 tsp ( a pinch) ( I have used kosher salt)
Eggs - 2 large
Oil - 1/2 Cup ( vegetable or canola, what ever you have)
Dark Brown Sugar - 1 cup 
Vanilla Extract - 1 tsp
Grated Zucchini - 1 1/2 cup ( 2 medium size zucchini yields this amount)

Preparatory Steps:
  1. Pre-Heat oven to 350 F.
  2. Grease the bread loaf pan with butter or brush with olive oil on all sides, corners and bottom of the pan. 
  3. Trim edges of zucchini and grate under large flake setting in grater. Measure 1 1/2 cup zucchini and set aside. 
  1. In a medium bowl add APF, Cocoa Powder, Baking Soda, Salt and mix every thing well together. Swift the flour to make sure there are no lumps, and set it aside. 
  2. Take another large bowl, break two eggs into it, add Oil and whisk it very well until combined. Add brown sugar to the same bowl whisk it well. Add Vanilla Extract and mix well. That makes the wet ingredients ready. 
  3. Now add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and whisk very well until everything is combined. 
  4. Add grated zucchini to this mixture and gently fold in well. DO NOT mix or stir here, you don't want to mash the zucchini. 
  5. Transfer this mixture to prepared bread loaf pan and tap on all sides to let the air bubbles out. 
  6. Bake in the oven for 50 - 60 minutes. Once it is done, take it out and let it cool for 15 min in the bread pan. 
  7. Once cooled off, invert into a plate and cut into slices and indulge into moist chocolaty-ness. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top of this warm loaf, Oh My, Heavenly! 

  • I have modified several things in my recipe, compare to original recipe. To make it skinner I have used Oil instead of Butter. For more rich version you can replace oil with 1/2 cup butter. 
  • Since we are using Brown Sugar in this recipe, this cake won't be super sweet, it brings the more chocolaty-ness out. 
  • Zucchini makes this cake very moist and spongy, at the end you don't even notice a single flake of zucchini in this cake.

Hope you loved this Chocolate cake made with Green vegetable!
Will be back with another healthy recipe, take care until then!

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Jan 28, 2018 No comments:

Spicy Egg Biryani with Coconut Milk ( IP Version)

It is cold here, heart wants spicy and comforting food but body is lazy and couch potatoed, then mind is set to experiment with this Simple Egg Biryani in IP (Insta Pot), but it turned out as stunning and Spicy Egg Biryani. Love this version, keep sake recipe for rush times!

Spicy Egg Biryani in InstaPot!
Basmati Rice - 4 cups ( I used 3 cups Basmati + 1cup Brown Rice)
Vegetable Oil - 3 Tbsp
Pulao Spices  - (Cinnamon -2, Clove - 4, Cardamom - 2, Star Anice - 1, Shazeera - 1 tsp)
Bay Leaves - 5
Red Onion - 1 mediumGreen Chili - 4
Tomato Puree - 1 cup ( I am out of tomatoes used 1 can roma dice potatoes)
Green Sweet Peas - 1/3 cup ( Frozen)
Salt - 2 tsp
Cilantro - 1/2 cup
Everest Shahi Biryani Masala - 3 Tbsp
Coconut Milk - 1 can
Boiled Eggs - 4

Preparatory Steps:
  • Wash Rice and soak for 15 min and drain in the colander and keep it aside.
  • Chop onion and green chili lengthwise and keep it ready.
  • Grind 2 cluster tomato in mixie and keep the tomato puree ready. ( if you don't have tomatoes, no need to be panic, you can use 1 can diced tomatoes like I did, today :-))
  • Slice Boiled Eggs into halves and keep them aide in a wide plate.

  1. Start the InstaPot (IP) in sauté mode.  Add Oil to the inner pot. Once oil is hot (in 1 min) add pulao spices, sauté for 30 sec. 
  2. Next add chopped onion, green chili, frozen green peas and half of cilantro and mix with spices. saute for 1 min. Add 1 tsp of salt and mix it well.
  3. Next add Tomato Puree ( or 1 can of diced tomatoes) to the pot and mix with onion mixture. Add 1 Tbsp Biryani Masala, mix it well with onion and tomato mixture. Close the lid loosely and let it simmer for 2 min ( until gravy comes together). 
  4. Next add 1 can of coconut milk and mix well with onion tomato gravy, add 1 tsp salt and 1 Tbsp of Biryani Masala. Mix well everything and let it simmer for 2 min. 
  5. Now add drained rice to the pot (Spread on top of gravy). Add 3 cups of water on top rice. Add 1 Tbsp of remaining Biryani Masala on top. ( DO NOT Stir or mix rice)
  6. Now close IP with lid and secure/lock it. Change the IP setting to Manual/Pressure Cook mode and set it to 10 min. 
  7. After 10 min do QR (Quick Release by wiggling the vent seal) to let the pressure out. Open Lid carefully, inside the pot rice is fully cooked now, add the boiled egg halves (facing yellow downside) on top of rice and sprinkle remaining cilantro and close the lid tightly and leave for 5 min. ( No need to ON now, the built-in inside pressure is enough to infuse eggs with masalas)
  8. Now open the lid then fluff up the rice and transfer to serving bowl and serve hot with cucumber raita or onion raita on the side!


  • For more flavor you can add 1 Tbsp butter + 2 Tbsp Oil in place of 3 Tbsp of Oil
  • You can add some more sliced red onions on top while serving for extra zing
  • If you are not using coconut milk you can add 1/4 cup hung/greek plain yogurt to the gravy and adjust the water accordingly ( for 4 cups of rice - 5 cups of water, 3 cups of rice - 3 cups of water). This measure helps you to get the consistency that each grain is separate from each other.
  • Onion Caramelization and Coconut milk cream subtle the biryani masala spices in this recipe.  Cream and Caramelization is key to balance the spices in this recipe, otherwise it will turn out super spicy and ruins the flavor and taste.
  • You can try the same recipe in Pressure Cooker on stove top, make sure after 2 whistles switch off the stove, to get the perfect textured biryani rice.

Hope you like my first IP recipe post, more are yet to come, Stay Tuned!

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