Sunday, January 29, 2012

Handvo/ Savoury Lentil And Vegetable Cake

I am very fond of Gujarati dishes, one such dish which is very much liked by me and my family is Handvo or Ondhwa. This is a baked savoury cake made with combination of rice with lentils and vegetables. This is very healthy and ideal for breakfast. Even my daughter who rarely eats anything apart from bread for breakfast, enjoyed this a lot. This recipe is from my dear friend Meghana's blog.

I have used store bought Handvo flour for this, but this should not be confused with readymade Handvo mix. 
Those who cannot get this flour, look out my notes at the bottom of this post.


Handvo Flour- 2 Cups
Grated Bottlegourd- 2 Cups
Fenugreek Leaves- 2/3 Cup (Chopped)
Corn- 1/4 Cup
Onion- 2 Medium Sized (Chopped)
Ginger-1 1/2 Inch Piece and Green Chillies- 2 ( Make a paste out of it)
Jaggery- 1 Tbsp
Turmeric- 1 Tsp
Red Chilli Powder- 1/2 Tsp
Salt- To Taste
Yoghurt- 1/2 Cup (Well Beaten)
Canola Oil- 2 Tbsp
Baking Soda- 1/2 Tsp

For Tempering:

Oil- 2Tbsp
Mustard Seeds- 1 Tsp
Cumin Seeds- 1/2 Tsp
Whole Red Chillies- 2
Asafoetida- A Pinch
Sesame Seeds- 1Tsp + 3 Tbsp for sprinkling on top

  • In a mixing bowl mix together all the ingredients except baking soda and tempering. Make a medium consistency batter with some water and let the batter rest overnight.
  • In the morning check seasoning and consistency, if required add little more water.
  • Preheat the oven at 190 Degree C. Grease a baking dish with oil and keep aside.
  • Prepare the tempering by heating oil in a pan. After the oil gets hot add in asafoetida, mustard seeds and cumin seeds, once they splutter add in red chillies and 1 Tsp of sesame seed.
  • Mix this tempering with the batter and now add in baking soda. Mix well.
  • Pour this batter in the baking dish and sprinkle generously with sesame seeds.
  • Place in the pre heated oven and bake for about 45- 50 minutes. Bake until the corners turn slight brown and a toothpick inserted should come out clean.
  • Now broil for another 5 minutes to get a crispy crust.
  • Remove the dish from the oven and let it cool for around 15 minutes before cutting into slices. 
Serve warm with green chutney and/or ketchup.

  • These can be made vegan as well by omitting yoghurt and adding vegan buttermilk and juice of 1 lime.
  • Those who cannot get handvo flour can use this combination instead- 1 Cup of rice + 1/4 Cup- Pigeon peas+2 Tbsp- split bengal gram +2 tbsp- split green gram +1Tbsp -split black gram. Soak the rice and lentils overnight and grind them in a smooth batter in the morning using little water. Now mix other given ingredients except tempering and soda. Add little water in the batter if required. Now keep this mix for about an hour and proceed as per point 3 in the procedure written above.
Sending this to my own event Veggie/ Fruit A Month- Bottlegourd which was started by Priya of Mharo Rajastan.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Sweet Cinnamon Roasted Chickpeas

I am so much hooked to Pinterest these days, its a great place to pin and categorize all things which we like. There are great resources out there ranging from photography to yum recipes, and I am loving it. I came across this recipe in Pinterest which is from The Pastry Affair and I knew that this is one of the recipe which is easy to make, healthy and quite addictive. Apart from the baking time, this requires just a few minutes of assembling. 


Chickpeas/ Garbanzo Beans- 2 Cups cooked or one 15 ounce can
Cinnamon Powder- 1 Teaspoon
Granulated Sugar- 1.5 Tablespoon
Canola Oil- 3 Teaspoons
Maple Syrup/ Honey- 1 Tablespoon


Preheat the oven to 190 Degrees C. Drain and rinse the chickpeas and keep aside. In a small bowl mix together oil, cinnamon and sugar. Now mix this paste with chickpeas so that beans is evenly coated. Spread the chickpeas on  baking sheet and bake for 45-50 minutes, shake the tray in between for one or two times. After 45 minutes check for the crispiness. If more crispiness is required then bake for few more minutes.

After the beans are baked take them out of the oven and pour maple syrup/ honey on it while it is still hot. Evenly coat the beans with the syrup and let dry for sometime. Store in an airtight container, but mine never made it to the container, the beans were devoured within the first hour of baking :)

Sending this to Priya's CWS event held at Saffron Streaks.
Also linking this to Priya Mahadevan's Fast Food Not Fat Food event hosted at Priya Sreeram's Bon Appetit.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Baingan Ka Bharta ( Smoked And Mashed Eggplant)

For me eggplant is synonymous to bharta, I like my eggplant smoked and mashed with lots of garlic and spices. Smoking of the eggplant on fire imparts a wonderful flavour to the dish. Long back in India we had a neighbour, who made this bharta with mustard oil and served with baati. I am not used to eating food cooked in mustard oil but enjoyed that rare treat by our wonderful neighbour, still that taste of bharta with baati soaked in ghee lingers on my tongue. And this bharta tastes wonderful with any Indian bread like naan and parathas.

The most important thing to remember is to buy a good quality of eggplant without any holes and to char the skin completely, so that the inside are cooked thoroughly and the eggplant gets tender and juicy. 

When I was removing the charred skin of eggplant, my daughter who just entered the kitchen stood on the door for a while and watched me curiously. After I had cut open the smoked eggplant, she seemed to be horrified and asked me..."mumma have we started eating non vegetarian food, is this some kind of fish? " . But when I explained her that this is eggplant she was relieved but still refused to eat the final I made some potato fry for her. I hope that when she grows up she will start liking this dish.


Eggplant- 1 Large
Onions- 2 Medium (finely chopped)
Ginger- 1 Inch Piece
Garlic- 4 Cloves
Green Chillies-2 ( chopped) 
Tomatoes- 2 Medium (finely chopped)
Green Peas- 1/4 Cup
Mustard Seeds- 1/2 tsp
Cumin Seeds- 1/2 tsp
Turmeric Powder- 1/4 tsp
Red Chilli Powder- 1/4 tsp
Coriander Powder- 1 tsp
Salt- To Taste
Oil- 1 tsp + 3 tbsp
Coriander Leaves- To Garnish
Fried Garlic slices- To garnish

  • Wash the eggplant and pat dry. Now rub 1 tsp of oil on the skin. Switch on the gas in medium flame and keep the eggplant directly on the fire. Let the skin char, keep turning the eggplant from all sides so that whole skin is charred and the eggplant is cooked from inside.
  • Once the eggplant is charred keep it aside on a plate to cool down for about 10 minutes. Then peel of  the skin and remove its crown. Cut the eggplant and mash it thoroughly with help of a fork.
  • Pound ginger and garlic together in a mortar and keep aside.
  • Heat the 3 tbsp of oil in a pan. Once the oil is hot add in mustard and cumin seeds. When the seeds start crackling add in green chillies, chopped onions and pounded ginger and garlic.
  • Once the onions turn brown add in chopped tomatoes, green peas along with turmeric, red chillies, salt and coriander powder. Let the mixture cook on a medium flame till the spices are cooked and the mixture starts leaving oil from the sides.
  • Now at this stage add in the mashed eggplant and mix everything together. Keep on cooking the mixture till a nice aroma comes say for about 7-8 minutes.
  • Now switch off the gas and garnish with chopped coriander leaves and some fried garlic slices.
  • Serve super hot.

Linking this to Dish it out- Brinjal and Garlic Event started by Vardhini and hosted by Sangee.
Also linking this to Hot & Spicy Treats event at Amy's space Foodssrilanka.

Sending this black and white picture to Susan's Black And White Wednesday.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Lauki Muthia Curry / Bottle Gourd Steamed Cake Curry

As I am hosting January's Veggie/ Fruit A Month- Bottle gourd event, I am sharing third bottle gourd recipe of this month..we all are having lots of bottle gourd in one form or the other and no body is complaining..what a relief. I have been making different kinds of dishes with bottle gourd and my DH and daughter are relishing them. In most of the dishes I have disguised bottle gourd and its working..yay.

After making bottle gourd steamed cakes I was left with lots of leftovers so I made a curry with yoghurt gravy, something like gatte ki subzi ( check for that recipe at mharo rajasthan). I made the curry with loads of spring onions and it was super delicious.


Leftover bottle gourd steamed cake/ lauki muthia- Around 15 pieces
Yoghurt- 1/2 Cup beaten
Spring Onions- 3 
Tomatoes- 2 big (grind and make a paste)
Paste of 2 green chillies and 1 inch ginger piece
Oil- 2 Tbsp
Mustard Seeds- 1/2 tsp
Cumin Seeds- 1/2 tsp
Asafoetida- A pinch
Red Chilli powder- 1/4 tsp
Turmeric Powder- 1/4 tsp
Coriander Powder- 1 Tsp
Salt- To Taste
Water- 1 1/2 Cup


Heat oil in a wok and add asafoetida, mustard and cumin seeds. Once the seeds splutter add in spring onions, ginger and green chilli paste and sauté. Now add in tomato paste along with turmeric powder, salt, red chilli powder, coriander powder and fry till the mixture is cooked nicely. Now add in well beaten curd and keep stirring till the mixture comes to a boil. Add in water and bring mixture to boil. Keep Check seasoning and add in the muthias/ steamed cakes and let it boil again so that all the flavours are soaked in by the steamed cakes. If the curry is too thick then little more water can be added to thin the gravy. Serve the curry hot with any Indian flat bread like naan, rotis or parathas.

Sending this to my own event veggie/ fruit a month- bottlegourd, brainchild of Priya.
Linking to Cooking with leftovers- kitchen chronicles, an event by Kalyani hosted by Veena.
Also linking to Let's cook with leftovers at Simply Food.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Lauki Muthia / Bottle Gourd Steamed And Seasoned Cake

Bottle gourd is not a favourite vegetable of many but as it has got mild flavour, it can be disguised in many forms. One such form is muthia or steamed cake. This is a Gujarati dish which is very healthy and at the same time too delicious. My mother used to make this and this was the tastiest and healthiest recipe of bottle gourd.

My mother is very fond of gardening and she grows a number of veggies like sponge gourd, bottle gourd, okras, potatoes and even cauliflower in her kitchen garden. Bottle gourd used to grow in abundance and even after distributing some to curious neighbours we were left with plenty so much that we were almost forced to consume it every day in some form or the other. I have to admit that I was quite not happy with it at that time, but now after so many years when organic is the choice for healthy living and it being so heavily priced I miss my mummy's home grown organic bottle gourd. 

This time when I went to India for vacations I enjoyed eating home grown veggies and now appreciate its goodness. The below picture is from my mom's kitchen garden..look at the fresh bottle gourd and sponge gourd.


For the Steamed Cake-

Bottle Gourd- 2 Cups grated
Gram Flour (Besan)- 1/2 Cup
Whole Wheat Flour- 1/2 Cup
Semolina- 2 Tbsps
Pearl Millet Flour (Bajra Aata)- 2 Tbsps
Corn Meal ( Makkai Aata)- 2 Tbsps
Rice Flour- 1 Tbsp
Ginger- 1 Inch Piece
Green Chillies- 2 or 3
Coriander Leaves- 2 Tbsp chopped
Turmeric Powder- 1/4 Tsp
Dry Mango Powder( Amchoor)- 1/4 Tsp or Juice of 1 lemon
Sugar- 2 Tsp
Soda- Bi- Carbonate- 1/4 Tsp
Oil- 1 Tbsp
Salt- To Taste

For Tempering-

Canola Oil- 2 Tbsp
Mustard Seeds- 1 Tsp
Cumin Seeds- 1 Tsp
Sesame- 2 Tsps
Curry Leaves- 10
Asafoetida- 2 Pinches
Lemon Juice- 1 Tsp

Coriander leaves- For Garnishing


  • Make a paste of ginger, green chillies and coriander leaves and keep aside.
  • Squeeze water from the bottle gourd and then add in all the flours, paste as made above and other ingredients as mentioned in the ingredients list for the steamed cake.
  • Mix everything together nicely so that a soft dough is formed. The dough will be little sticky, but if the dough is too sticky or wet then more gram flour can be added.
  • Keep the dough aside for 10-15 minutes.
  • Apply little oil in your hands and take out small portions of the dough and roll them into thick cylinder shapes. Similarly make all the cylinders. For this quantity you will get atleast 7 cylinders of about 1 1/2 inch thickness.
  • Place these cylinders in a steamer and steam them for about half an hour or till a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  • Let the muthias cool for sometime and then cut them into round discs of about 1/2 inch thickness.
  • Prepare the tempering by adding oil in a wok and once oil gets hot add in asafoetida, mustard, cumin and once they splutter add in sesame and curry leaves. 
  • Now put in the muthias and fry them in medium flame for 4-5 minutes taking care not to over stir the muthias as they may break. Switch off the gas and garnish with coriander leaves.
  • Serve hot with coriander chutney.

I had some muthias left over after snacking. To know what I did with them stay tuned for my next post.

Sending this to my own event Veggie/Fruit A Month- Bottle Gourd which was started by Priya of Mharo Rajasthan.

Fast Food Not Fat Food Event of Priya Mahadevan hosted currently at my dear friend Priya Sreeram's space.

Walk through Memory Lane at Gayathri's space.

Vardhini's New U event.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Bottle Gourd Chocolate Cake

New outlook towards resolutions...and a new what we all have in our minds. But do we need excuse of new year to start something which is good for us...No... Each day is a new day which brings lots of hopes, promises and good things in life, and the resolutions are meant to be do not make resolutions but make good choices and take decisions which have positive effect in life. 

I used to make resolutions every year but now have stopped making them cause I know I will not be able to stick on even a single of those. But I have promised myself to try to live each day to its fullest, to spend more quality time with my DH, play lot more with my daughter and make more new friends but cherish the old ones for ever :)

I am a big fan of veggies in baked goodies, earlier I have made a beet bundt, carrot muffins and even a savoury pumpkin scone, so now this time I sneaked bottle gourd in chocolate cake. The cake turned out to be super moist and no body could guess that bottle gourd was in it..hehe (evil smile).

I dressed up the cake with chocolate sauce and it was divine.

( Recipe inspired from goshthatssovegan)

For the Cake-

All Purpose Flour- 1 Cup
Unsweetened Cocoa Powder- 6 Tbsps
Sugar- 1/2 Cup + 2 Tbsps
Baking Soda-1 Tsp
Instant Coffee Powder- 1 Tsp
Salt- 1/8 Tsp
Canola Oil- 1/4 Cup
White Distilled Vinegar- 1 Tsp
Vanilla Extract- 1 Tsp
Water- 3/4 Cup (Approx)
Bottle Gourd- 1 Cup grated and packed

For Chocolate Sauce-

Sugar- 1/2 Cup
Soy Milk or Dairy Milk- 1/2 Cup
Unsweetened Cocoa Powder- 1/2 Tbsp
Salt- A Pinch
Vanilla extract- 1/4 Tsp
All Purpose Flour- 2 Tsp


For The Cake-
  • Preheat the oven at 180 Degrees C for 10-15 minutes.
  • Grease a cake tin with oil and line up with a parchment paper then grease the top of the paper with oil and keep aside.
  • Grate the bottle gourd and measure 1 cup packed and keep separate.
  • Sift all the dry ingredients ( flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, coffee, salt) together in a large bowl.
  • Make a well in the centre and pour the wet ingredients ( oil, vinegar, vanilla, water) in it.
  • Mix all the ingredients together. 
  • Squeeze out water from the gourd and mix the grated gourd in the prepared cake mixture. Stir gently till everything is combined.
  • Pour the batter in prepared cake tin. Choose a cake tin so that batter is more than 1/2 in the tin.
  • Bake the cake in the preheated oven at 180 Degrees for 35-38 minutes or till a toothpick inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. I baked the last 10 minutes with the top of the cake covered with aluminium foil.

For Chocolate Sauce-

Combine all the ingredients together in a saucepan and mix well so that there are no lumps. Boil the sauce for   
about 2 minutes in slow heat. Remove from heat. The sauce thickens as it cools. If the sauce gets too thick then add in more milk and heat it up a bit.

Pour the sauce on the cake and serve warm.

Sending this cake to Veggie/ Fruit A Month- Bottle Gourd which is a brainchild of Priya of Mharo Rajasthan and currently being hosted at my space.

Also linking this to Cooking Concept's Chocolate Fest.

Vardhini's Bake Fest #3 hosted at Pumpkin Farm.

Srivalli's Chocolate Mela

Vardhini's NewU event

Suma at Veggie Platter's Cook Eat Delicious Desserts event.


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