Wash Rice and Moong daal thoroughly. Dry roast moong daal for about 4 minutes. Let it not get burnt.
On medium heat, in a pressure cooker add the rice, roasted moong daal and cumin seeds. Add 4.5 cups of water.
Pressure cook for 5 whistles. After the pressure is released, immediately mash the rice and daal with back of a ladle.
On medium heat, in a large pan, add 2 tbsp ghee. Once hot add peppercorns, green chillies, ginger and cashews. As the color of cashews begin to change, add asafoetida, ground pepper-cumin powder and curry leaves.
Add the mashed rice and daal mixture. Add salt, cilantro and remaining ghee. Mix well and remove from heat.
Ingredients for Ven Pongal:
3-4 tbsp ghee
4.5 cups water
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/3 cup moong daal
1 cup basmati rice
1/4 tsp asafoetida
Salt – to taste
1/4 tsp peppercorns
3 green chillies
Few strings of curry leaves
1 tsp of ground pepper-cumin powder
2 1″ ginger piece(roughly chopped)
Method for Ven Pongal Arancini:
Remove the pan from the heat and spread the rice daal mixture on the baking sheet lined with parchment paper to allow it to cool. Once it has cooled, roll portions of the mixture in your hands to form balls of about 4 ounces, and stuff each one with a piece of mozzarella and coconut, sealing any holes.
Place the flour, beaten egg, and breadcrumbs in separate bowls. Coat one ball first with the flour, then with the egg, and finally with the breadcrumbs, then place it back on the baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat this process until all the risotto balls have been
In a large, heavy-bottomed skillet, heat 1 cup of oil until it is almost smoking. Cook the arancini in the oil until they become golden brown all over. Remove each rice ball to a plate lined withpaper towels to drain.
Add carrots, cardamom powder and saffron to milk and bring to a boil. Cook on slow flame, stirring occasionally till milk dries up and the raw smell of the carrot disappears.
Add ghee, nuts, raisins and the paneer cook for another 10 min. Add condensed milk and sugar. Cook on a slow flame till dry (about 25 to 30 min) stirring occasionally.
Ingredients For Gajar Halwa:
5 cups milk
2 oz raisins
1-2 tbsp sugar
½ cup grated paneer
2 oz cashew chopped
2 oz chopped almonds
2 oz pistachio, chopped
1 tin condensed milk
1¾ lbs carrots, grated (preferably red)
3-4 pods cardamom, powdered
4 tbsp ghee, clarified butter
Method Swiss Roll Sponge cake:
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Line the base of a 10 by 15 inch Swiss roll or jelly roll pan with greaseproof or parchment paper. Brush the base and sides of the pan with melted butter, and dust with flour.
3. Whisk the eggs, and sugar together, until light and fluffy, and then add the water, and vanilla extract.
4. Sift in the flour with cardamom powder, about a third at a time, and using a large metal spoon, fold it into the egg mixture.
5. Pour the mixture gently into the prepared pan, and bake in the oven until the center of the cake is slightly springy and the edges have shrunk a little from the sides of the tin, about 12 to 15 minutes.
6. Spread out a piece of parchment paper (slightly larger than the tin size) on a work surface and sprinkle evenly with caster sugar (this stops the roll from sticking to the paper). Turn or invert the pan onto the sugared parchment paper, and then carefully remove the tin and parchment paper from the bottom of the cake.
7. Place a slightly damp, clean tea or kitchen towel over the cake while it cools- this will prevent it from drying out and cracking when you roll it.
8. When the cake is cool, spread gajar halwa over the cake, leaving a 1-inch border. Repeat with the whipped cream. With the longest side facing you, roll up the Swiss roll away from you, then transfer to a plate to serve. Sprinkle the cake with caster sugar or dust with icing sugar to finish.
Ingredients Sponge Cake for Swiss Roll:
1 tsp cardamom powder
2 tablespoons warm water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 1/2 ounces all-purpose flour
4 1/2 ounces caster sugar (superfine)
plus 3 tablespoons for sprinkling or use icing sugar (confectioners'), for dusting
Method for Heart Gulab Jamun and Strawberry Mousse:
Preparation of sugar syrup:
Mix together water, sugar and crushed cardamoms in a pot.
Boil the syrup until it turns slightly sticky. Turn off the stove before it goes to a 1 string consistency.
Add rose water and mix. Set aside to keep it hot.
Making the dough:
Sieve together flour, milk powder and soda in a bowl. Add ghee to it and mix well.
In a small bowl, mix together yogurt and 2 tbsp milk. Pour 1.5 tbsp of this to the flour mixture.
Begin to bring the flour together to make a dough. If the dough is too dry, add little more milk & yogurt. Do not add too much, use only as needed. The dough turns sticky.
Between two sheets of greased paper, roll the dough to a thin sheet. Cut heart shaped pieces.
How to make Gulab Jamun:
Heat up the pan with ghee or oil on medium heat.
Also check if the syrup is hot. If it is not hot, heat it up a bit. It must be hot but not very hot.
When the ghee is just medium hot, add the hearts. Make sure the oil is not very hot, else the gulab jamuns will turn brown without cooking well. To check the right temperature, you can drop a small piece of dough in the oil. It must rise slowly without changing its color. If it rises rapidly then you will need to cool the oil a bit before frying.
Fry the hearts on a medium flame until golden. Keep stirring gently to fry them uniformly.
Add them to the hot syrup. Allow them to rest for about 30 mins.
Whip heavy cream with sugar and salt. Add strawberry puree.
Layer 3 gulab jamun with strawberry cream and slices.
Garnish gulab jamun with chopped pistachios, fresh organic flowers and gold sheet
Dry roast nuts on a low flame for 3-4 minutes on a skillet. Add the saffron strands to the skillet and roast for 30 seconds. Let the nuts and saffron cool.
Add all ingredients, including the nuts and saffron, to a blender and blend until you have a fine powder.
Ingredients for Thandai Masala:
1/4 cup pistachios
1/4 cup cashews
1/4 cup almonds
2 tbsp melon seeds
2 tbsp white poppy seeds
Pinch of saffron
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1 tbsp milk powder
2 tsp dried rose petals
1 tsp cardamom powder
In a heavy bottom saucepan add heavy cream and thandai masala on medium-high heat and bring to a simmer. Add agar agar and whisk continuously until the cream come to a boil. Then simmer on low heat for 2 minutes. Keep whisking the entire time.
Pour cream into your mold or cup.
Refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight. If you used a mold, just gently pop the panna cotta out of the mold and place onto your serving plate. Garnish with additional thandai masala and enjoy!
Serve on a base of mango and strawberry coulis with thandai masala garnish and edible marigolds and micro mint.
Ingredients for Panna Cotta:
2 tbsp thandai masala
1/2 tsp agar agar powder
1 cup heavy cream
The Celebration: Vaisakhi, Tamil New Year, Gudi Padwa, Ugadi, Pahela Baishakh
Mix the greens, green chilies and salt to taste and boil in 1 cup of water till cooked, in a covered pot.
Drain and squeeze out the excess water. Puree the greens mix well to make a coarse paste.
In a pan dry roast the besan or chick pea flour till the raw smell disappears.
In a large pan heat ghee on a medium flame. When hot add the chopped onion and saute till pale golden. To this add grated ginger,grated garlic, garam masala and the roasted chick pea flour.
Add the greens puree to this and stir till its all combined. Remove from heat and set the greens aside to cool.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the grated paneer, and ricotta cheese. Add the cooled spinach mixture and mix until combined.
Combine the melted butter with the olive oil in a bowl. Using a pastry brush, lightly grease a 9 x 12 rectangular pans. (or use your favorite pan).
Carefully remove the Phyllo roll from the plastic sleeve. Most packages come in 12 x 18 inch sheets when opened fully. Using a scissor or sharp knife, cut the sheets in half to make two stacks of 9x12 inch sheets. To prevent drying, cover one stack with wax paper and a damp paper towel while working with the other.
Layer about 10 sheets on the bottom of the pan making sure to brush each sheet with the butter/olive oil mixture. Add the spinach mixture in an even layer and press with a spatula to flatten.
Layer another 10 sheets on top of the spinach mixture making sure to brush well with butter/olive oil mixture. Before baking, score the top layer of phyllo (making sure not to puncture filling layer) to enable easier cutting of pieces later.
Bake in a preheated 350-degree oven until deep golden brown for approximately 20 to 25 minutes.
Ingredients for Sarson ka Saag Spanakopita:
1/2 lb frozen fenugreek leaves (1/4 kg)
2 serrano chillies, thinly slices
1 lb. phyllo pastry sheets (1/2 kg)
1 cup ricotta or cottage cheese
1 tbsp grated garlic
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup olive oil
1 lb mustard greens washed and chopped fine (1/2 kg)
In a large shallow dish, whisk the sour cream, cream cheese with garlic, cumin seeds, garam masala, peppercorns, ground cumin, ginger and turmeric.
Coat shrimp (chicken or lamb) and vegetables thoroughly with the marinade. Cover and refrigerate for 3 hours.
Thread shrimp (chicken or lamb) alternating with vegetables onto skewers and season with salt. Place on a tray and cook at the broiler setting in the oven until cooked through. Sprinkle the kebabs with chat masala and serve with lime wedges.
Ingredients for Kebab Platter:
Assorted vegetables (red onions, peppers, mushrooms) – cut in cubes
3 tbs unsalted butter, melted
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp ground cumin
½ cup cream cheese
1” ginger, minced
16 jumbo shrimp, shelled and deveined. (Or small pieces of chicken or lamb)