Whenever I eat at vegetarian Indian restaurants, my go-to dish is Bhindi Masala with Aloo Paratha. This is a version I made with paneer, to add to my Blogging Marathon theme. I created a spinach paratha recipe to go with it.
3 cups Chapatti Flour
2 teaspoons ghee
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups water (This will vary, depending on humidity and other variables. Add a little water at a time, until the dough comes together.)
To put together the dough, combine flour, ghee and salt.
Add water a little at a time, until the dough comes together.
Cover with a kitchen towel and let rest for 30 minutes. While the dough is resting, prepare the filling.
2 teaspoons ghee or oil
4 cups spinach leaves, thinly sliced
1 onion, chopped
4 chiles, finely chopped
1/4 cup mint, chopped
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
Extra ghee, for frying
Extra flour, for frying.
Make sure you wash spinach thoroughly. Spinach and basil are the two vegetables that I hate to wash. They are usually filled with so much dirt, it is necessary to wash it several times. The last thing you want is gritty tasting paratha!
Heat ghee in a skillet. Add onion and chili and saute, until onions are translucent. Add garam masala and turmeric.
Add spinach and cook until wilted.
Add herbs. Stir to combine and let rest for 10 minutes.
The dough should have rested enough by now. Divide dough into 14 portions, rolling each portion into a ball.
Now the stuffing and the rolling of the parathas is the most difficult part of this recipe. Eventhough I have been making Caribbean style rotis for a long time (see recipe here), stuffing parathas was a new experience. I tried a few procedures (two ended up in the garbage) until I found one that worked.
Using your palm and your fist, press dough on one of the balls of a dough until you have a circle. Place on a lightly floured surface. Place about 1 tablespoon of the filling in the middle and spread on the circle a little bit.
Then place another flattened circle of dough on top.
Using a rolling pin, roll as thin as you can without breaking.
This was my first time making stuffed parathas, so I have not yet mastered the skill of making perfectly round shaped parathas. Too bad, I don't have an Indian mausi to teach me this technique. This is something I am just going to have to practice, but it still all tastes good!!
We use a roti iron in the Caribbean and in India, they use a tawa. Whatever flat instrument you have can be used to fry these flatbreads. If you have a double sided griddle, use the flat side.
Coat tawa or whatever you are using with a little ghee. Place rolled paratha and cook for a few minutes on each side, until golden brown.
Bhindi Masala with Paneer
2 teaspoons plus 1 tablespoon mustard oil
1 teaspoon dhana-jeera powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon red chili powder (cayenne)
7 ounces paneer, cubed
14 ounces okra
1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons ginger, grated
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/8 teaspoon asoefetida
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 black cardamom pods
1/4 teaspoon green cardamom seeds
salt, to taste
1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped
Sprinkle turmeric, dhana-jeera powder, chili and salt over paneer cubes and toss.
Add okra, tomatoes, black pepper, asoefetida and cardamom.
|Submitted to Susan's Black and White Wednesdays|
Add cilantro, cooked paneer and salt, to taste.
Serve with Spinach Paratha and a cold refreshing Indian ale. I also had some leftover dahl from when I made the Indo-Mex tacos, which completed this Indian meal.
If you want to really create an authentic, Indian experience at home. Go to an Indian market and get a thali, which is a traditional round plate, where food is usually served on in South India and places like Nepal and Tibet. The individual food components are served in small bowls on the thali. In the NY area, you can get these at Patel Brothers supermarket or Bhutala Emporium (2 locations - one on 74th Street in the heart of Jackson Heights' Little India across the street from Patel Brothers. The other location is on 28th Street, right off of Park Avenue in Manhattan).
Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#12
3/14/2012 Update: this archived recipe being contributed to
Chef Al Dente's