Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Black-eyed peas salad, Pan fried potatoes, Stir fried verduras



It was one of those all veggies day. I have many of these days. Although I was born a hard core non-vegetarian, I grew to love my vegetables! That worked out fine for me, eventually, as for various reasons I had to restrict my intake of meats, of which red meat was totally out! And I loved my roti-boti or mutton curry and rice! Ironically I am off (doc's orders) quite a few vegetarian fare too. I try to keep it easy, light and as healthy as I can bear. Too healthy is tough on my palate, and I don't really need that!! Anyway, to carry on, here we go:


Ingredients:

For salad:

Boiled eggs..................................as required
Table radish................................as required
Boiled black-eyed peas (raungi/lobhiya beans)........as required
Tomato........................................as required
Lemon.........................................1 or acc to amount of prepared salad
Pepper corns..............................7-8 or acc to requirement
Extra virgin olive oil..................abt 1 tbsp., or acc to requirement
Salt.............................................acc to taste
Lettuce.......................................Use as many different salad leaves as are available. I had only these in store.

Note: Add to your salad according to your wish and availability of items. I usually go with whatever is in the pantry and it surprises me how much you can do with seemingly "nothing" or "kuch bhi nahin hai." I avoided any other dressing because I was planning on combining it with some potatoes and a dressing. So kept the flavours simple.


Soak the lobhiya for a few hours. If you've forgotten to do so, soak in hot water for an hour and pressure cook in salted water. This unlike rajma beans, soaks fast and cooks fast too. Drain a keep aside to cool.

Boil eggs, shell and quarter.

Wash the table radish. Scrape off the fine roots, if any. Do not peel off the lovely violet skin. Cut in half and slice across the breadth.

Cut the tomato in half. Remove the seeds. Slice lengthwise into slender slivers.

Wash the lettuce twice or thrice in cold water. Spread on a kitchen towel and pat dry. Tear into big pieces. If you are combining iceberg, then chop the iceberg into strips. Helps to hold the salad together.

Crack the pepper corns. Or use your pepper mill. Just don't use ground pepper (powder). Fresh pepper adds to the aroma and flavour, and cracked pepper adds a bite to the bite!

Mix all items, except the eggs, to a bowl and toss. Add lemon juice, salt, olive oil and toss again.

Now add the egg quarters and gently fold them in with a salad spoon.




For the Potatoes:

Potatoes...............................as required
Onions.................................1, sliced or acc to required quantity
Mayonnaise.........................2 tbsps., or as required. I use Kraft, which I recommend if you are using readymade mayo
Mustard...............................a few drops or as required. Use whatever mustard sauce you like.
Ketchup...............................a couple of drops or as needed.
Cream.................................2 tbsps.
Olive oil..............................a bit to pan fry the potatoes and some to fry the onions
Green coriander (cilantro)......for garnish
Salt
Pepper


Boil the potatoes in salt water. Do not over boil. They must be cooked to the centres, so that a knife can go through without the 'crunch' but firm to hold shape and not break into pieces.

Peel, halve across the breadth.

Brush some oil in a non-stick pan and heat. Place the potatoes face down (flat side down) and brown on high heat. Be careful not to over brown. You only want to add some colour in patches and extra flavour.

Wipe the pan with a paper towel, after the potatoes are done. Pour in a bit more oil and shallow fry the sliced onions. If you are preparing a larger quantity, fry in lots. Do not throw in the whole lot of onions, unless the pan is large enough to keep from overcrowding.

When the onions are brown (not black) remove and spread on an absorbent paper towel.

In a bowl mix the mayo, cream, mustard, ketchup. Ketchup has to be very little. Enough to add a mild taste of sweetness and make the mayo dressing blush delicately. Go slow on the mustard too, some are pretty sharp. But then the last word, go with your preference in flavour.

On a flat platter spread out the potatoes, sprinkle some salt and pepper pwdr. Scatter the browned onions over them. Using a tablespoon drop dollops of dressing over the onions. Sprinkle chopped cilantro.




For the Verduras:

Cabbage......................................acc to required quantity
Carrots........................................as required
Garlic..........................................one clove (big variety) or as required, chopped very small
Chicken stock..............................a couple of tbsps. or less acc to quantity required
Pepper to taste
Salt to taste
Sesame oil or Olive oil


Cut cabbage into fine strips.

Cut carrots in long medium sized strips

Heat about 1 n 1/2 tsp. oil (or more) depending on how much you are making, in a non-stick pan. Add the chopped garlic. Stir around in the oil and when they begin to change colour but not brown, add the carrots. Stir the carrots to mix with the garlic.

Now add the cabbage. Stir in.

Add a sprinkling of chicken stock. Home made or ready made.

If you are using a stock cube, be careful about the amount of salt you add to the veggies. There is usually salt already in the stock cube.

Keep tossing around to keep it from burning.

Keep the veggies cooked but crunchy.




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