Thursday, April 21, 2011

Soya Palak (Spinach w/ Soy Chunks)

Source:  SpicyWorld

I have been wanting to try out a recipe with soya chunks for a while now.  I bought a packet a few months ago and just haven't had the chance.  You can get Nutrela soya chunks in any Indian store.  It's high in protein and I've seen a lot of recipes where this is used as a meat substitute.

  • 1.5 -2 cups spinach (palak)
  • 1.5 cups soya chunks
  • 1/2 cup yogurt 
  • 2 onions
  • 4-5 green chillies
  • 2-3 tomatoes 
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 5-6 mint leaves 
  • Handful coriander leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 inch ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds 
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tablespoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder

Prepare Soya Chunks
  1. Soak the soya chunks in hot water for 1 hour. Then squeeze out the water completely.
  2. Marinate them with yogurt, salt, red chili powder and turmeric powder and a little ginger garlic paste for ~2 hours.
Prepare Spinach and Masala
  1. Wash and chop the spinach leaves finely. Chop 1 onion finely.
  2. In a pan heat a little oil and crackle the cumin seeds and add one sliced onion. 
  3. Stir fry and add a little salt and spinach and simmer until the spinach has wilted and cooked.
  4. Grind together one onion, mint, coriander leaves and green chillies.  Add a little water if you need to.  At this point I also added ~half the cooked spinach mixture and ground it together too.
  5. Add the mixture w/ masalas, ginger, garlic, chopped tomatoes, salt and simmer for 6-7 minutes.
  6. Taste and add more spice/ salt if necessary.  I added the tomato paste at this point because I thought it needed more of a tomato-y flavor.
  7. Add the soya chunks and let it cook for a few more minutes.
Kuty's Twist

So this really came out great!  My additions to the original recipe were only because of my own taste preferences.  I added more green chilies, ground the cooked spinach so the gravy would be more smooth, and added more tomatoes.

I also increased the amount of spinach and soya chunks so I would have a lot of leftovers!  This tasted a lot better after 2 days. I think it gave the soya chunks some time to soak in the flavors.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Persian Flat Bread Pizza

Source: Kuty's Kreations!

This was inspired by both a Sunday night pizza craving and a fantastic pizza crust find.  I was doing my weekly grocery run at my favorite Persian market and my eyes popped out when I saw a shelf full of large long pieces of Persian bread!  Why hadn't I thought of this before?  It is the PERFECT crust to use to make an insanely large amount of flat bread pizza.  So much so that I was able to make 4 different types of pizza.

  • Pizza toppings of your choice. (I grilled red peppers, zucchini, eggplant, red onions, and jalapenos.  I also used peas and corn.)
  • Tomato Sauce (I used 1 can of tomato sauce and simmered it with some red chili powder.)
  • Cheese (I used asiago, mozzarella, pepper jack, and cheddar)
  • 1 Large Persian Bread
  • Pesto (I had some leftover spinach and arugula pesto I had made last week)
  1. Pesto, zucchini, peas, corn, mozzarella and asiago cheese.  This was inspired by a pizza I've had at Bella Vista.  I know it sounds wacky, but it is such a great combo of ingredients.
  2. Tomato sauce, grilled jalapenos and red peppers, pepper jack and mozzarella cheese.
  3. Tomato sauce, grilled eggplant and red onions, mozzarella cheese.
  4. Tomato sauce, grilled onions, mozzarella and cheddar cheese.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Place the pizzas directly on the rack (this will make your thin crust pizza crispy).  Be careful not to put too much cheese on the sides of the pizzas.  The cheese on my pizzas melted over and dripped into my oven causing a mess =\.
  • Wait until the cheese starts to bubble and brown a little bit
Kuty's Twist

This can obviously become any type of pizza you want.  Have fun, be creative, and let me know what you end up making!  :-)