Chicken – Main Course

Posted by admin | Poultry,Recipes | Friday 24 February 2006 6:27 am

Butter Chicken is considered the ultimate chicken dish, and is visible in almost any Indian buffet, in varying quality. It can single handedly be blamed for the Panjabi-fication of India.


Bird Who?

Posted by admin | Health Facts,Just Food Articles - writers invited | Friday 24 February 2006 6:26 am

All the human beings quarantined for suspected avian ‘flu have tested negative.
That’s great obviously. One daily I looked at this morning has simply wiped the bird ‘flu story off its front page. But then that raises a lot of questions. Is there a bird flu pandemic or isn’t there?

Incidently I just looked up the word that’s being used in every third line all over the newspapers. All it means is ‘widespread’. I really didn’t know, in fact I was a little disappointed. I’d somehow imagined that pandemic was a wonderfully creative word that aptly described an epidemic that was causing widespread panic. So much for imagination.

Meanwhile, someone we know working at a local poultry farm has offered us Chicken at Rs.10 per kilogram. That’s about one fifth the normal price. They’ve gotten an order of 10 kilos from an office of little over 10 people. How’s that for a panic-demic? I’m proud to be working with such brave people.

Here’s what I plan to do with part of my 1 kilo.


Who’s for chicken?

Posted by admin | Just Food Articles - writers invited | Thursday 23 February 2006 6:29 am

Bird ‘flu has landed.
After beating the odds the last two times round, after watching it land in far away Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia, Afghanistan and France, and ducking the migratory birds overflying us, India has finally caught bird flu. It’s almost the only thing in the papers, – who’s going to be eating the chicken, and who isn’t.

The government wants to limit the panic so it agrees that there will be as much public interaction on the matter as possible. Press conferences ended with the serving of fried chicken legs, breasts and liver, but their own personnel don’t seem very impressed by the show.

The armed forces and military training colleges countrywide have taken chicken off the menu. Trivia : that’s something like 1,20,000 kg of chicken consumed, and now not, every week!

The poultry barons are insisting it’s some other non-human-infecting disease like Ranikhet. At least they were till last night. They’re screaming their lungs hoarse about how chicken and eggs are still 100% safe. They’re going to have public cooking festivals, and demonstrate that as long as it’s treated right, humans can consume the chicken, no matter whether it’s diseased or not. (more…)


Rice & Pulses with Meat

Posted by admin | Meat,Recipes | Friday 10 February 2006 6:31 am

The recipe of Dhansakh, though cooked in thousands of Parsee homes on almost all Sundays, seems to vary. Here’s a recipe thats simpler than most.

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1 kg Mutton leg chunks
3 cups Toovar dal (pigeon Peas)
2 big Tomatoes skinned and finely chopped
2 small Onions, quartered
2 small onion finely sliced
1 Brinjal small, quartered (optional)
3 small bunches tiny methi bhaji, wash and cut (optional)
200 gm Red pumpkin chopped into squares (optional)
1 cup Mint leaves finely chopped (optional)
3 tsp ginger garlic paste
4 tbsp oil
1 tsp turmeric powder
Salt to taste

Grind to paste the following ingredients using vinegar and not water.
4-5 Red Kashmiri chilies
1 Garlic
1 tbsp Peppercorns
1 tbsp Cloves
2 inch Cinnamon stick
1 tsp Cumin seeds


Wash toovar dal. Soak in approximately two cups of water. Add turmeric powder, quartered onion, ginger garlic paste, salt, mutton chunks and all the chopped vegetables. Keep it aside for an hour.

Pressure cook until mutton tender, about 30 mins

Take mutton chunks out from the dal.

Take a medium sized vessel; add oil and place over medium heat.

Fry the finely sliced onion until dark brown.

Add the ground paste and sauté for a minute. Add chopped tomato.

Add the dal to the tomato and let it simmer for 5 minutes on low flame. Stir occasionally. If the dal is too thick add water.

Remove from heat and blend the dal with a hand blender.

Add mutton chunks and simmer for 5-7 minutes.

Browned Rice is a must with Dhansak dal

2 1/2 cups Rice
2 onion
1 tsp Peppercorns
2 Bay leaves
1 tsp Cloves
Salt to taste
1 tsp Cardamoms

Saute the onions in oil till pale gold and set aside.

Stir the spices dryly over a hot tava for 3-5 minutes till fragrant. Remove from heat, be careful not to burn them.

Wash the rice. Add the fried onions, spices and salt to taste.

Cook till rice is tender and every grain is separate.


Holy Dhansak!

Posted by admin | Just Food Articles - writers invited | Friday 10 February 2006 6:31 am

It is amazing that a dish, which is relished by the Parsees, is considered to be inauspicious and usually avoided at parties, weddings, etc. The reason being that after a death in the family, Parsees have to abstain from meat for the first three days. The first meal served on the fourth day is Dhansakh. However, the Parsees do serve a meatless dal to accompany a meat pulao on certain occasions.

by Rukhnaz
Ask a non-Parsee friend what he would like to eat and he would promptly reply “Dhansakh”.
Dhansak on Sundays are sacrosanct to a Parsee. This thick mutton (chicken) gravy cooked with lentil and vegetables are eaten with brown rice, mutton or prawn kebabs and a Kachumber or a salad made of raw onions, cucumber, tomato, raw mango in Summer, coriander and slices of sour lime. Dhansakh, which is eaten in the afternoon, is normally followed by a long siesta. In fact, the idea of Sundays without Dhansak is almost blasphemous to a Parsee.


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