Versatile Baked Beans

We absolutely love baked beans, it’s a rare treat for us. Usually I buy store bought beans and put a ‘masala’ spin on it. However, the unavailability of canned product got me experimenting a little.

I figured any beans would do good as long as they were tiny in size. I chose red chowli (aka, black eyed peas). It barely took any pre-prep work apart form soaking the beans overnight and were ready in good time the next day.

These are so versatile because they can be dolloped on steamed rice, made quesadillas with, rolled up into chapatis as frankies, eaten as a dip, had on toast of course. The combinations are limitless!

Here’s the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • Red black eyed peas (laal chowli)
  • Tomatoes for puree or use canned tomato puree
  • Garlic
  • Onions, chopped finely
  • Bell pepper of your choice of colour, chopped finely
  • Cumin powder
  • Ginger powder
  • Chilli flakes
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Mustard powder
  • A pinch of sugar
  • Green chillies, finely diced (optional)
  • Red chilli flakes (optional)
  • Coriander, finely chopped
  • A little vinegar (white)

Method:

  • Soak the chowli overnight
  • Boil Tomatoes and puree them. If not use canned tomato puree
  • Pressure cook it until its nice and mushy
  • Keep it aside
  • Add olive oil to a sauce pan or skillet and on medium flame add garlic, chillies & onion and saute until the onions go a little soft (I prefer the onions a little crunchy)
  • Add peppers and salute a little more
  • Next add the pureed tomatoes
  • Once the sauce mix is nice and bubbly add the salt, pepper, cumin powder, mustard powder, sugar all to taste
  • Add the mushy chowli and ‘mush’ a wee bit more if required
  • Bring to boil until its all nicely mixed up
  • Add water to bring it to desired consistency
  • Turn off heat after a good boil
  • Garnish with fresh chopped coriander

PS: I sprinkle the red chili flakes only on our share, my children can handle a small hit of heat from the green chillies but the dried red ones will take some time.

Serve warm with your choice of accompaniment.

We had these for dinner followed by breakfast of fried egg on a layer of beans on toast the next day :)

How do you like your beans?

In Love with Paneer – Part 02 {Desi Quesadillas}

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Recycling old rotis! We’ve all been there at some point. I seem to be stuck with a surplus at any given time. So, when the excess paneer situation happened, an open face guac & paneer quesadilla was my go to.

It is super easy to make and it takes almost no cooking time. You can also crisp up the roti in the oven for an added crunch. Trilok loved and preferred the crisper version so here goes the recipe.

Here’s what you need:

  • A day old chapatti/roti
  • Half an avocado for the guacamole
  • Onions, chopped
  • Peppers in all colours, chopped
  • Spring onions
  • Coriander/cilantro
  • Garlic
  • Lime
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Olive oil
  • cumin powder
  • Amchur / dry mango powder
  • Tandoor paneer masala or garam masala

Guacamole:

Guac, is the easiest most delicious thing to make. It’s also so versatile. Use it as dip or on toast, fried eggs, omelette, heck parathas even!

  • Take a ripe avocado and scoop out its flesh (use only half).
  • With a fork squish it up. Set it aside
  • In the same bowl add the chopped onions, peppers and cilantro
  • Add the salt, pepper and cumin powder
  • Squeeze in the lime juice and a drizzle of olive oil
  • Now incorporate everything. Do it with a light hand you wouldn’t want the whole thing to go from looking fresh and green to earthy and brown
  • set it in the fridge until you get the paneer filling ready

 

Paneer/cottage cheese filling:

This bit is super easy too.

  • Crush the paneer
  • In a skillet, drizzle olive oil or ghee even
  • Simmer some powdered or whole cumin with freshly minced garlic
  • Add just a pinch of turmeric powder
  • Add the chopped onions, peppers, spring onions  and sauté until a little tender but still a wee bit crunchy
  • Now add the crushed paneer to the skillet and sauté for a few minutes
  • Add salt, chat masala, amateur (dry mango powder) and tandoori paneer masala to taste
  • Remove from stove and set it aside

Roti, the base:

Smear a little olive oil or ghee on both its surfaces and pop it in the oven for about 5 mins or until crisp. Same can be achieved on a tavaa on a low flame.

Once the paneer cools off a bit, get the guac out of the fridge and divide the two fillings on the crisp roti  half and half. Garnish with coriander. Also I’ve used peppers and spring onions for the paneer prep though one can choose absolutely any kinds of veggie additions.

Viola! Open face crisp desi quesadilla is all ready for demolition!!