Independence Day 2020: Savour the taste of freedom with these tricolour dishes
With I-Day celebrations restricted to our homes this year, here are some recipes of delicacies inspired by the colours of India’s National Flag.Updated: Aug 14, 2020 22:17 IST
The Covid-19 crisis has affected our lives in more ways than one, but nothing can put a dampener on festive spirits in India. And a quintessential Indian celebration is incomplete without an array of mouth-watering delicacies.
On Independence Day and Republic Day, we often come across a range of dishes inspired by the colours of our National Flag. The colour in these dishes comes from ingredients such as carrots, coriander, spinach, capsicum, etc, which are not just tasty but healthy, too. For instance, carrots are rich in essential nutrients, while capsicum is rich in vitamin C – something that is of utmost importance to building immunity, especially at a time like this.
So, if you’re looking for some culinary inspo, here are some dishes you could try out.
Dumplings with a Patriotic Twist
(Recipe by chef Nishant Choubey)
For the dough, you will need 500g of refined flour, salt as required, 100ml of water
For the stuffing, take 300g of chopped mushroom, 1tsp of garlic, oil to cook, 30g of water chestnut, 1tsp of black bean paste, 1tsp of broth powder, 1/4tsp of dark soy, 1tsp of chopped spring onion, 50g of spinach puree, a few strands of saffron, 30ml of milk
Method: To make the dough, knead refined flour with water and salt. Cover and keep it for 20 minutes.
For the stuffing, heat a pan, add oil and chopped garlic and sweat it. Next, add mushroom and allow the water to get absorbed. Add black bean paste, broth powder, dark soy and finish with spring onion.
Make spinach puree by blanching spinach and then blending it. Cook it with bit of oil to ensure the puree is not watery and at the same time, it doesn’t lose colour. Meanwhile, soak strands of saffron in milk.
Divide the dough into three parts. Add spinach puree to one, saffron to the second and keep one part as plain. Roll and stuff with mushroom mixture. Steam and serve hot.
Straight from the Gujarati Palate
(Recipe by chef Ranveer Brar)
For the Dhokla mixture, you will need ½ cup of semolina, 4tbsp of yoghurt, 3 tbsp of oil, 2tbsp of fruit soda, salt to taste, 1 inch ginger (grated), 2tbsp of carrot pulp, 2tbsp of spinach pulp
For tempering, take 1tbsp of mustard seeds, 2 green chillies (slit), 1 sprig of curry leaves
Method: In a bowl, add semolina, yoghurt, grated ginger, salt, 1tbsp of oil and mix well. Add water to this mixture to form a batter consistency and keep aside for 20 minutes. Divide the batter into three separate bowls. Add carrot pulp to one bowl and spinach to the other. Mix well. Grease a loaf tin with oil. Add water to the steamer and bring it to a boil. Place a stand in it. Now, add fruit soda to each bowl and mix. Pour the orange coloured batter in the mould first and evenly spread it. Follow it up with the plain white batter on top of this. Spread it gently using a spatula. Finally, pour in the spinach batter and spread well. Place this mould in the steamer and cover it with the lid. Let it cook for 20-25 minutes. Once done, turn off the heat and let it cool.
For the tempering, heat oil in a small pan, and to it, add curry leaves and mustard seeds. Then, add the slit green chillies and cook till they turn a little brown.
Once the dhokla is cool, gently remove it from the mould and pour the tempering over it. Cut into 1 inch slices, garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot.
(Recipe by chef Rajesh Singh, Taj Mahal, New Delhi)
For tikka, you will need 500g of paneer, 3 tomatoes, 2 onions, 2 capsicums.
For base marinade, take ½ tbsp of cumin seeds, ½ tbsp of coriander seeds, 10 green cardamoms, ½ tbsp of cloves, ½ tbsp. of black pepper, 3tbsp of ginger-garlic paste, salt to taste, 2tbsp of mustard oil, 2tbsp of chopped green chillies, 200g of curd (hung), 1/2tbsp of garam masala
For saffron base, you will require 1/2g of saffron, 1tsp of turmeric powder. For coriander base, take 2tbsp of boiled coriander paste, 1tsp of red chilli powder. For malai base, take 1tbsp of cream, 1 tbsp of cheese.
Method: Dry roast and pound cumin seeds, coriander seeds, green cardamom, cloves, black pepper in a mortar and pestle. In a bowl, add ginger-garlic paste, coriander powder, salt, warm mustard oil, green chilli and whisked curd. Mix them all. Divide this mixture into three parts and then separately for saffron, add toasted saffron and turmeric and mix the base paste. For coriander base, add boiled coriander paste and red chilli powder to base mixture and keep it separately. For malai, mix cream and grated cheese to base mix and keep it separately.
Next, cut paneer into cubes, dice onions, capsicums and tomatoes. Divide and add this in all three mixtures and mix well. Rest it for 45 minutes. Once done, grill the paneer in a pan or in a tandoor. Serve hot along with some mint chutney.
A Taste of Royalty
(Recipe by chef Arvind Rai, executive chef, The Ashok – New Delhi)
For this, you will need 50g of carrots, 200g of spinach, 100g of paneer, 50g of boiled potato, salt to taste, 10g of white pepper, 5g of garam masala powder, 2-3 garlic cloves, 10g of cheese, 20g of refined flour, 5g of ginger (finely chopped), 5g of green chilli (finely chopped), 500ml of oil, 2 medium-sized onions (boiled), 30g of cashew nuts, 5g of ginger-garlic paste, 5g of green chilli paste, 3-4 cloves, 1 inch cinnamon stick, 2 green cardamoms, 2 bay leaves, 50ml of fresh cream
Method: Boil the spinach and finely chop. Heat oil in a pan and sauté chopped garlic. To this, add chopped spinach and stir till all the moisture evaporates.Add the grated cheese and keep aside.
Grate the carrot mix with some boiled potato and keep aside. Now, grate the paneer, mix boiled potato along with salt, white pepper, chopped green chilli, chopped ginger, garam masala powder and refined flour. Take a portion of sautéed spinach, form into a ball cover, stuff it into a ball of paneer and potato mixture. Cover this ball again with carrot and potato mixture, keep aside. Similarly make balls or koftas of the remaining mixture. Deep fry them in the remaining oil and keep aside.
For gravy, soak cashew nuts in water and make a fine paste along with the boiled onions. Heat oil in a pan, add cloves, cinnamon, cardamom and bay leaf and let them crackle for a few seconds. Add the onion and cashew paste along with green chilli paste and cook for 4-5 minutes. Cover the pan if the masala is spluttering too much. Add salt and white pepper powder and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add a cup of water and bring the curry to a boil. Cook for 2-3 minutes, add fresh cream and mix well. To this, add the kofta -- cut in two -- garnish with mint leaves or a sprinkle of kalonji seeds, and serve immediately.
Kuch Meetha Ho Jaye!
(Recipe by chef Nishant Choubey)
For this dessert, you will need filo sheets (enough to make the crisp), 50g of butter, 150g of ghee, 1l of milk, 1kg of red carrot, 500g of mawa, 1tsp of green cardamom powder, 200g of green capsicum, 250g of sugar, 120g of desiccated coconut, 50g of fresh coconut, 100ml of coconut cream
Method: Cut the filo sheets into any desired shape. Line it with butter and bake it at 275 degrees for 10 minutes or until it gets crisp. Meanwhile, grate red carrot and cook with ghee, milk, mawa, sugar and cardamom powder. Puree green capsicum and cook it with ghee, milk, mawa, sugar and cardamom powder. Also, cook the desiccated coconut with ghee, freshly grated coconut, coconut cream, mawa and sugar.
Keep the halwas separately and layer with crisp filo sheets and serve hot.
Author tweets @srinidhi_gk