Stir fry Bhindi

Bhindi Fry

I have not found anybody so far, who has a reluctance for the simple “Ghar ka Khana”, the home made food. The “Ghar ka Khana” is something, everyone staying away from home, be it a student, a working professional, a  bachelor or anyone, misses so much. For them, a easy non fussy meal of Daal-rice or chapati-sabjee is heavenly. These take care of taste without looking down at the health. My bachelorhood days were filled with these 2 combi usually. And one of my fav was simple bhindi, fried with few spices coupled with Chapati. Luckily, Mahi loves to savour Bhindi. A small  bowl of BHINNI is all what she needs in lunch. Chapati or no chapati…she decides after finishingSmile.

Bhindi Fry

Time: 30 mins or even less.

Serves: 3


  • 1/2 kg lady’s fingers / Bhindi / Okra
  • 2 big onions, finely chopped
  • 1.5 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp. each of cumin seeds/ jeera+ small mustard seeds/ rai +white sesame seeds/ til (vary acc. to your preference)
  • 1 tsp. freshly crushed ginger-garlic (I prefer mortar and pestle way)
  • 1 tbsp. dry mango powder/ amchoor
  • 1 tbsp. coriander powder
  • salt per taste
  • coriander leaves for garnishing


  1. Wash bhindi 2 times until clean and then pat dry. Keep in air for sometime for drying completely. This helps remove slime.
  2. Chop the head and tail off. Cut into small pieces. Chop the onions finely.
  3. Heat oil in a nonstick pan. I prefer mustard oil with bhindi. They, together, create an immensely strong flavor, which I like alot.
  4. Splutter jeera, rai and til seeds. Add ginger garlic paste and chilies. Fry foe 30 sec. Add onions and fry them till light brown.
  5. Add bhindi and mix all the dry spices except salt. Mix well but gently not to break the bhindi pieces.
  6. Cook uncovered on a low-medium flame for 15 mins approx. Keep stirring in between. This will help remove the slime and roast bhindis too.
  7. Add salt and amchoor powder, mix well and cook uncovered for 2-3 more minutes until salt and amchoor mingle with the rest.
  8. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve with Chapati.
  9. Relish the simplicity.

Bhindi Fry


To reduce slime:

Add salt towards the end of cooking. Pat dry the bhindis completely before chopping. Dry the chopped bhindi in air for sometime. Fry the onions until they turn light brown. READ of microwaving the chopped bhindis for a couple of minutes too.


Sabudana khichdi

Sabudana Khichdi

She talks too much, so much that at times, I think of finding a hiding den for me. I find it utterly difficult to answer her questions. Not because they are tricky but because, they are same and have no actual replies. I know, a few moms out there must be cursing me for saying this. But, common, I am a poor short tempered human!! I cannot be a super mom all the time. Yeah!! Now, I can see a few nods. Thanks!!

She is too talkative of her age.(Trust me, I am not praising my baby) The “mumma-mumma” song never seem to be ending. A thousand questions daily! What is this? what are you doing? questions are numerous but answers, they don’t find a way out from my mouth…becuz there are not any!! not as per her expectation. She starts babbling(which I though was a forgotten history) when she is having a fun time. I guess, we needs to be kid every next moment with them, to connect.

When it comes to food, most of you would agree that the sweat wringing task is ‘this’…feeding them…feeding them to full and feeding nutritious. Do you? Then, Fret not. At least I am there to company you. Virtually!! Smile 

This Sabudana khichdi, is loved by Mahi and good for her highly active(read busy) days. What can be better than breaking off the night long fast with sabudana khichdi? Sabudana or tapioca pearls or Sago are full of carbs, when mixed with protein rich peanuts and a dash of lemon juice, unbeatable, for the bundled energy it has, until lunch!! a power packed breakfast, a flavorful khichdi.

Tapioca Pearls

Time: 30 mins + soaking time

Serves: 2


    1 cup Sabudana / tapioca pearls/ sago 
    3 potatoes, boiled, peeled and cut into cubes
    3/4 cup peanuts, roasted, peeled and crushed. (I pulse it in mixer, this gives a portion with finely ground powder and a portion of small-big crushed peanuts)
    1 tsp. jeera
    1 tsp. freshly grounded black pepper
    1 tsp. lemon juice   
    1-2 dried red chilies
    salt to taste (replace with rock salt/sendha namak for fasting food)
    water for soaking
    2 tbsp. oil


    Rinse the tapioca with 1 water and soak in water until just covered. 2 hours soaking time is enough for small pearls, I usually do overnight as I use bigger pearls and due to time crunch in the morning.
    Lightly dry roast the peanuts. Peel them when warm between your palms (once cool down, it will be difficult to remove the covering) and pulse them in mixer once or twice to get coarsely crushed peanuts.
    Mix the crushed peanuts with the soaked tapioca and keep aside.
    Now, heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan.
    Splutter  the jeera and add red chilies.
    Roast for a while and add cubed potatoes.
    Once the potatoes turn golden brown, add the tapioca and peanuts mixture.
    Add salt and freshly crushed black pepper. Mix and cover.
    Cook for 15 mins approx., until you see all the pearls turned translucent. This is the hint that the tapioca pearls are cooked.
    Remember to keep stirring in between,gently, not to break potatoes. This ensures that khichdi will not stick to the pan and won’t be gooey.
    Once done, garnish with coriander leaves and serve with sweet curd (the mumbai style) 
    Relish!! anytime Smile.


Crushed peanuts are the key to get a non sticky khichdi. Vary the amount if you prefer.

Adding some chopped fruits is a good idea. I saw this option in a food show.

Soaking time for sago may differ, smaller the pearls, smaller the duration. Big pearls need 5-6 hours of soaking.

Sabudana Khichdi

Besan ka Chila ~ gram flour crepes

Happy Makar Shankranti to all !!

Chickpea Flour Crepes

“Besan ka CHILA” was a frequent in our breakfasts/eve snacks during childhood. My mom makes them very beautifully and fast. Appetizing and healthy!! I used to make them once in a while earlier but after making 2-3 crepes, I used to loose interest and got irritated. I never could make thin and round and they used to stick to the pan. What made the matter worse was, they never came out in 1 piece. Grrrr!! Each crepe used to break either while turning upside down or while taking off to plate. Alas!!

But now, when I have another member who needs something healthy and new day by day, I gave up my fear for the failure and tried again. And to sheer surprise, after a few trials, I perfected it (well almost!).

The secret is, a proper consistency, no lumps, properly heated and greased griddle. Once you get the batter with right consistency, which should be similar to dosa batter, spread a ladle full of it on hot tawa, immediately spread using the same ladle or tilt the griddle in all directions to spread. Once done, spread your choice of topping. Spray/brush some oil around the edges to not let it stick. This ensures the crepe to leave the surface properly once cooked. A thick crepe will take more time and chances are, the besan may not be cooked completely.

To speed up the process, my mom uses 2 tawas. Once the crepe is cooked from 1 side, she will spread it upside down on the other hot greased tawa. And, place another ladle full of besan batter on the first one. But this needs practice.

All said and done, time to switch to the method.

Besan Ka Chila

Time: 30 mins or even less.

Serves: 4-5 crepes


    1.5 cup besan / chickpea flour/ gram flour
    1.5 cup warm water
    1 medium onion, finely chopped
    2 green chilies, finely chopped, adjust per your taste
    1 tsp. ajwain/ carom seeds
    handful chopped coriander leaves
    1 tsp. jeera powder (optional)  
    salt per taste
    oil for preparing the crepes.


    Mix besan and water, water in 2-3 batches gradually for a proper consistency with all other ingredients except oil. The batter should have a consistency similar to dosa, a slight thinner would also go.
    Beat and mix well until lumps are removed.
    Rest it for 15 mins and mix again. This step ensures the removal of all lumps.
    Heat a heavy griddle/nonstick tawa.
    Pour and spread 1 tsp. oil. Pour a ladle full of besan batter and spread in clockwise direction to get a thin crepe. 
    Pour few drops of oil around the edges and on top.
    Cover and cook on a low to med-low flame.
    Once the edges leave the surface of griddle, use a spatula and delicately flip the crepe upside down.
    Cover and cook again for 2 mins.
    Serve with your fav chutney/dip or sauce.


It is a good idea to prepare a paratha on the tawa first so the the griddle is greased properly and the 1st crepe will not stick to it. Alternately, you can brush some oil on tawa, heat it and clean using a paper towel.

You can spread chopped onions over the crepe like we do for uttapam, instead of adding it in the batter. This allows smooth spreading of the crepe.

The batter should be of similar consistency of dosa.

To remove the lumps, another good idea is to mix besan and water, beat well and pass it through a steel wired sieve. Then mix in all the other ingredients.

Spread crumbled paneer on the top before flipping the crepe. This adds some more nutritional value. Adding methi leaves/ kasuri methi is a good flavor enhancement. Adding some black salt improves the taste. Remember to adjust the common salt accordingly.

Be patient, if you don’t get good crepes initially. You will perfect the process gradually.

Besan ka Chila


Because this recipe is something, I learnt many times from my mom (over phone and face to face) and succeeded only recently (I know, it might be very easy for many of you to perfect a crepe/chila/dosa, I am one exception!!), I really owe a big thank to her for her patience. So, sending this to the event dedicated to honor MOMs organized by PureVegetarianBites to honor my mom’s love to me.


Welcome 2013 !!

Aromatic Encounters wishes you all, a very happy and splendid 2013.

May Almighty brings each day, a cheerful new chapter in your life.




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