Thai Spiced Vegetable Brown Rice

Thai Spiced Brown Rice with exotic vegetables

Thai Spiced Brown Rice with exotic vegetables

Its been quite sometime now since I started brown rice. And let me tell you the transfer has not been easy. Those who are used to eating soft white rice dotted with pure ghee will tell you why.

Perfectly steamed gorgeously white rice is what it is because of what it is. Brown rice pales in front of it, literally. But I am girl on a mission. Mission to curb my growing waistline and lose some serious weight. So naturally I shun the shiny rice and ghee. Adopt the brown version and…my dal rice has never tasted the same again.

I have to add paneer ;)

I have to add paneer 😉

I had to love what I embraced or I would be running back to my ex. So began my tryst with the healthier grain. Looking for ways to improvise it, I have tried innumerable options.
Sautéing mushrooms and zucchini in some thai red curry paste and throwing in brown rice, seemed like a bit of an experiment. But what an attempt! That bowl was supposedly my lunch, but he and she took great big bites and kept asking for more. Now that’s a good way to rate my dishes, don’t you think?

Something to drink with

Something to drink with

The recipe:

Ingredients

  • 1 cup brown rice, cooked.
  • 1 medium sized onion, sliced thinly
  • 3 tbsp red curry paste
  • 1/2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp vinegar
  • 3/4 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced thinly
  • 1/4 cup zucchini, sliced thinly
  • 3 tbsp paneer small cubed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tsp olive oil or any oil you wish
  • basil leaves and coriander leaves to garnish

Method

In a large skillet, heat oil. Saute garlic and onions till pink. Mix in the red curry paste. Fry till oil leaves the sides. Throw in the mushrooms and zucchini. Cover and cook till almost done. Mix in the brown rice along with soy and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper. Mix well. Garnish with cubed paneer, basil and cilantro leaves.

Best with something cold to sip on.

Simple and delicious

Simple and delicious

Note: Use any vegetable you like, carrots, broccoli, beans ..

Note: Instead of paneer, boiled soy Nutrela nuggets taste great.

Note: Adjust the quantity of red curry paste according to the heat you can take.

Note: Boiling brown rice has been a continuous trial and error process with me. One of the recent methods and almost close to getting perfectly cooked rice is to soak the rice well for at least 2 hours, and then cook in a large pot of salted boiling water. Once the rice is cooked, strain the excess water and use.

High on heat

High on heat

If you have any more ideas to deal with brown rice, please holler. I am listening.

This is my entry to Angie’s Friday Fiesta #25. Sneak in to see some gorgeous recipes here. You will thank me for sure.

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Makhni Paneer

Classic Paneer Makhani

Classic Paneer Makhani

I am highly skeptical about this. Taking an old post, revamping it with new photographs and republishing is a first for me. I have my doubts and reservations. The old one is very much a part of me, an integral part of my growing up here. Now with a wee bit more photography skills, to demolish the old one simply seems cruel.

Well, I did it anyways. And for keep sake, this picture below shows you what it was when I shot it a year back 🙂

Cottage Cheese in Creamy tomato gravy

Cottage Cheese in Creamy tomato gravy

I have an improved version of the same classic recipe. Adding whole kashmiri red chilies to the gravy worked fabulously on the gorgeous deep red colour!

Now for keep sake, I even lifted some of my original words and placed it here –

Makhani Paneer is a popular curry from the northern states of India. Add fresh home-made paneer or cottage cheese to a simmering hot blend of onions-cashews and tomatoes. Crushed kasuri methi lends that mesmerizing aroma, which fills your home with such love, that neighbors know you are cooking something special. It’s a great accompaniment with naan, chappati, rice or simply toasted bread.

Top on the husband’s list of favorites, it’s a sure winner every time I make this. Ideal for sunday lunches and on party menus. I make it rarely as it is loaded with butter and cashews and FAT. But whenever I do, the family pigs out.

Well.. er… that rarely has become quite regularly in my house. And yes, they still pig out.

Rich and creamy

Rich and creamy

Ingredients

  • 200 gms paneer, diced into neat big pieces
  • 3 onions, chopped
  • 6-7 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 small tiny piece of ginger
  • 4 tomatoes, chopped
  • a fistful of cashew nuts
  • 1 cardamom
  • 2 cloves
  • 3/4 whole kashmiri red chilies
  • 1 small stick of cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp red chili powder or according to taste
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp crushed kasuri methi or dried fenugreek leaves.
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tsp butter
  • salt according to taste
  • 1 small capsicum or green bell pepper, sliced
  • chopped coriander to garnish

Method

Heat oil in a kadai/pan. When hot, throw in garlic, ginger, onions, cashews and the whole spices. Add little salt, cover with lid and let it cook. After 5-6 minutes, add tomatoes, along with the dry masala powders – turmeric, red chill, whole red chilies and coriander. Now cover again and cook for 10-15 minutes, taking care to keep mixing it in between. It should be cooked well enough for the oil to leave sides. Once done, cool the mixture.
Then with the help of milk, grind the cooled onion tomato mix to a fine smooth orange paste. In another pan, heat butter, saute the sliced capsicums. Once almost done, add this orange gravy, and let it simmer for a minute. Sprinkle crushed kasuri (fenugreek) leaves and salt. Mix well. Add the diced paneer. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.

Serve along with onion ring salad.

Ideally served with super soft rotis or naans. Any kind of bread or rice also goes well with this flavorful curry.

Note: If you like, slightly saute the paneer in butter and add them to the gravy. But I added them as it is. This is a rich full fat curry, did not want to add more.

Perfect with soft wheat rotis

Perfect with soft wheat rotis

When in no mood to experiment or debate or try, we turn to this fool-proof signature dish of mine. Returning from an erratic work schedule and long travelling dull days, he knows for sure what he will find on the table. His most favourite dish 🙂

Comfort Food

Comfort Food

I am taking this over to Angie’s Weekly Potluck Parties, Friday Fiesta #24! Do have a look at the other dishes and recipes.

Paneer Corn Mushroom Cilantro Whole Wheat Pizza

Simple tastes yet a curious palette. Fond of familiar comfort food yet experimental with myriad cuisines. Happily digg in to something alien and innovative but satiated only with those last bites of conventional native usual viand. Sounds primitive?

Pizza with Indian Flavors - paneer, corn and cilantro

Pizza with Indian Flavors – paneer, corn and cilantro

I married a simple man. He likes dal rice and will be happy if a papad is added. The same guy never shies away trying something new and bold. He is experimental but his taste buds are immensely hard to please. If he doesn’t like something he will not mince his words to say so. He eats without creating a fuss partly because it is already made and he hates to waste food and partly because he loves me 😉 but later declares full throttle, that he will not eat that particular thing again.

He prefers familiar food. Something he has grown up with. Well, his case is not as severe as a friend of ours who even after having a full blown chinese meal wouldn’t be satisfied unless he had a small bowl of curd rice. 🙂

Yummy Slice

Yummy Slice

Just 2 posts back, I tried my hand at this wonderful 100% whole wheat pizza dough, which was a fabulous sunday lunch for all of us at home. A simple margherita with astounding results.

Happily gobbled in no time, husband craved for something closer to home…No basil-shasil, lots of garden fresh veggies and a whole lot of coriander/cilantro leaves to garnish. The guy is in love with coriander leaves from time immemorial. He likes it in everything (except desserts). Daal, sabzis, soup/stew, pav bhaji, bread, rice or in parathas!

He told me to hide the basil, and get the coriander leaves out. Along came the corn paneer and mushrooms with a wee bit of tandoori masala to tantalize his austere palette.

One for all

One for all

The Recipe:

To make 1 medium sized pizza:

Ingredients

  • 100 % whole wheat pizza dough
  • 2-3 tbsp pizza sauce or simple ketchup
  • 1/2 cup sweet corn kernels
  • 1/2 cup chopped button mushrooms
  • 1 big onion, chopped
  • 4-5 tbsp grated paneer
  • 1 tbsp grated mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 tsp oil
  • 2 tsp tandoori masala
  • salt to taste
  • 2-3 tbsp fresh chopped coriander leaves to garnish
  • seasoning and red chili flakes – to serve with

Method

In a pan, heat oil. Saute onions. Once pinkish, add corn and chopped mushrooms along with a little bit of tandoori masala and salt. Takes hardly 3-4 minutes. Keep aside.

Roll out your dough into desired thickness on a pre oiled parchment paper. Spread the pizza sauce or ketch up on it. Spread the corn mushroom mix on it evenly. Top with grated paneer and little bit of cheese.

Ready for the oven

Ready for the oven

Bake at 200 degree celsius till the base slightly browns. Don’t wait for the paneer to brown, it won’t.
Once out of the oven. Sprinkle seasoning and chopped coriander leaves. Let is sit for 2-3 minutes – hardest to do. Then… Attack!

Right out of the oven

Right out of the oven

So, I chopped. He topped. We baked and then we devoured with such frenzy right on the kitchen top, that Milee definitely puts a check on the crazy parents box. The delightful bites with very Indian flavors won me over so much that I had to put this recipe up for you guys to try.

Healthy Indian flavored Pizza

Healthy Indian flavored Pizza

Milee did not care much for this mix mash of punjabi-italian slice. She was well fed with her simple margherita. But her amused, curious and ‘u guys are mad o wot’ look did seal the deal for a perfect end to a Sunday Brunch.