Vegetarian Manchurian – Indian Chinese dish!



Do you know that there is nothing like a spicy and warm bowl of Indian Chinese food during winter like  soup or a dish called Manchurian or Hakka noodles which fall under Indian Chinese food category?

Indian Chinese food is adaptation of Chinese flavors and cooking techniques but suitable to Indian tastes. Originally, Indian Chinese cooking became famous or developed when Chinese immigrants moved to Calcutta now known as Kolkata  in 18th century. Chinese cuisine is very popular within Indian communities. It is really different from the authentic Chinese dishes and often influenced by Indian flavors.

If you are interested in learning more about the history of Indian Chinese Food then I would recommend this article.  It is interesting to know how one culture can influence others through food and has a wonderful result. With out further ado, try it for yourself with this recipe. Please don’t freak out with the list of ingredients.  I usually have most of them in my kitchen and I am sure you do too.



For the vegetarian balls:

4-5 medium sized shredded carrots

1/2 cups Shredded cabbage

1/2 cups shredded green bell pepper

1 tbsp Green Chilies

1 tbsp Ginger

1 tbsp Garlic

1/2 cup boiled rice

¼ cup bread crumbs

3 tablespoons Corn starch

Salt to taste

Black pepper to taste

Oil for frying

For the Sauce:

1 tbsp oil

1/2 Green Bell pepper, cubed

1/2 onion, cubed

1 teaspoon Chopped green Chilies

1 1/2 teaspoon Chopped Ginger

1 1/2 teaspoon Chopped garlic

salt to taste

Black pepper to taste

3 tbsp Soy Sauce

2 tsp Corn starch

1 tsp sugar or honey

1/4  cup Scallions

1 cup water or vegetable stock

Garnish – Chili oil


DSC_6393Method for the balls

Shred the vegetables using a food processor . Make sure you do not blend it and make a paste. Because it is easy to do so. In a separate bowl add corn starch, bread crumbs, boiled rice, vegetables, salt pepper, soda bicarbonate, ginger chili paste, soy sauce and mix well. Add two tablespoons of water if needed. First check whether you can form balls without adding extra water. There is usually water from the vegetables that helps bind everything together.

Make rounds about the size of tennis ball out of the mix and deep fry them until golden and crisp. Keep them aside till we are ready to serve them. Lot of times, I make a big batch and then once they cool down, store them in ziploc bags to and freeze them for future use. It saves so much time and the sauce hardly takes 10 mins to prepare.

Method For the sauce/ gravy –

Take oil in pan, saute the onions and green bell peppers. Add ginger, garlic and chilies. Mix well. Let it cook for couple of minutes and add soy sauce.

Dissolve 2 teaspoon corn starch in 1 tablespoon of water. Mix the cornstarch mixture to the pan. Add in the sugar, salt and black pepper and the 1 cup of water. Mix well. Let it simmer for sometime and add in half of the scallions.

Once the sauce thickens, add the fried manchurian balls to the sauce. Let it cook for two minutes and soak in the gravy. Garnish it with remaining half of the scallions. If I am making this dish for a party or so, I would only add the manchurian balls just few hours before serving so as to avoid them becoming more soggy and loosing its shape.

You can also freeze the sauce. Only thing you have to keep in mind is that once you defrost it, it will have thickened because of cornstarch so much that you need to add water and may be season it a little bit.





I served them with hakka noodles. I will share the recipe some other day. But you can serve it with boiled rice. You can also make fried rice out of the gravy and balls and serve it as rice dish. Either ways you will love this dish.

Bon Appetite!

Pistachio Pancakes with Rose Butter !

Pistachio Pancakes with Rose Butter 


I had been thinking about this flavor combination since many days. Initially, I was in the mood to make a cake and fill it with rose cream. But, before I could experiment I thought of trying it in small quantities. I had this perfect opportunity last week when I was home alone and wanted to eat something for breakfast but turned out I made it to lunch. I had prepared some apricot pistachio frangipane tart and had some leftover pistachio frangipane so what is the best use of it then try making pancakes. I used the pistachios we bought from our Greece trip. Oh , I tell you they turned out so good. I felt so happy and content. And, I had perfect lunch of pancakes. Yes, lunch. You can have them for dinner as well.



1 1/4 cup of ground pistachio

1 tsp cardamom powder

¾ cup all Purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

½ tsp Salt

1 egg

2 tbsp melted butter plus extra for pancakes

½ cup – 1 cup milk



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Compound butter:

4 tsp of rose petal jam (I used the one I bought from SOFRA, Boston)

½ cup Butter



Compound butter

Place softened butter in a medium sized bowl. Mash with a fork. Add rose petal jam to the butter. Mix well. Place on a square of wax paper, shaped like a log. Roll it around a bit, so it’s nice and compact and uniform. Roll the wax paper around the butter. Twist the ends like a piece of candy. Refrigerate until firm (about 1 hour).  You can also use it immediately; it would not be firm but nice at room temperature. For pancakes, anyways it will melt and taste better. So, I prefer serving it at room temperature.



Take all the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl ground pistachios, cardamom, all purpose flour, baking powder and salt. Mix it well.

Take ½ cup milk, add the egg and butter and whisk all the wet ingredients together in a separate bowl.

Now, mix the wet ingredients to the dry mix and mix well until it does not look lumpy. If the batter is thin, I would add a little bit more flour.  If the batter is too thick then add the other half of the milk. That way you get the consistency that you want.

On the hand, heat a griddle or pan to cook the pancakes on medium heat. Grease it with a little bit of butter.

Using a measuring cup, pour about ¼ cup of batter enough to form a pancake.

Let it cook on one side, you will be able to see bubbles and then flip it. Let it cook on another side for half a minute and check if it is well done.  Work with rest of the batter in the same way until you have used all your batter.

Just before serving you can warm them in the pre heated oven for few minutes.

Serve it with a dollop or two of rose petal jam butter.

Variations: You can also use rose petal cream cheese or whipped cream with rose petal jam. I went with simple butter which packed a lot of flavor in itself.   Next time, I thought of trying a nice sabayon sauce with rose petal jam flavor. I assure you it will fantastic in any way you make it.


Hope you like it ! Happy Valentine’s Day !

Mango Creme Doughnuts


I know, it has been a long overdue for a recipe or an update from me. I still have to share with you my readers about the Greece trip. But, before I could share  everything about our trip;I would like to wish you all a very Happy New Year! And, a recipe of Mango creme filled donuts or doughnuts. Whatever you might wanna spell it as. I don’t care about how you spell it; I only care about the doughnuts. Don’t you..too..

DSC_6355 (2)Since, so many months I have been dreaming of making doughnuts at home and fill them up with some delicious mango creme. So, I did some research for a good doughnut recipe and came across one and decided that the first thing we eat on the New Year’s day should be a doughnut. Ahh, I did it! I started my New Year with a nice, soft, pillowy doughnut filled with sunshine. They are so good. I think I kept on tasting until my stomach begged no more. Wait, I have to before passing on the recipe. I have no choice. Somebody gotta do the tough job  of eating :-)

So, get your apron on and make some doughnuts. I know you want some.

DSC_6348 (2)Recipe for raised Doughnuts: adapted from Lara Ferroni’s recipe on Food 52!

2 teaspoons active dry yeast

1/2 cup lukewarm milk (about 110 F)

1 1/4 cup bread flour

1/4 cup whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 large egg

1 tablespoons cane sugar

1/4 teaspoon  salt

2 tablespoons butter (unsalted)

oil for frying the doughnuts


For the Mango Filling: 

6 egg yolks

1/4 cup sugar or more (depends on the mango pulp)

1 cup mango pulp

1/4 cup corn starch

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons unsalted butter


Mango creme:

First let me share the recipe for the mango curd.

Take everything in a pot and using the double boiler method, keep stirring the yolk mixture until it thickens and comes together and is hot enough. It hardly takes 10 minutes. Remove it from the stove and stir in the butter until it mixes well.

Remove it in a bowl and let it cool a little bit and then wrap it with a saran wrap. At this point you can either use it immediately or refrigerate it over night. You can actually store it for one week in the fridge.

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For the Doughnuts :

Take 1/4 cup of lukewarm milk to 110 F and dissolve 1 teaspoon of yeast and 1/4 cup of flour and stir make a smooth paste. Leave it covered at a warm spot for about 30 minutes.

While the dough is resting, you can make the mango creme. It take them 10 minutes to prepare and another 10 to cool down. If you are planning to make doughnuts the next day then you can leave the mango creme covered with a plastic wrap in the refrigerator.

In another bowl, take rest of the 1 teaspoon of yeast and dissolve it in to the remaining milk and add the rested flour mixture that we prepared in the 1st step along with egg and vanilla extract. Stir it well so that everything mixes well. Then go ahead and add the all purpose flour or if you are using whole wheat flour. Top it with sugar and salt and mix it up properly. Then , add butter and keep adding rest of the flour until you have no flour left out and you can form a ball of dough. It might be a little sticky but do not worry.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it rest at a warm spot for another 30 minutes.

Once it has rested, punch it down and then refrigerate it for over night. Resting the dough overnight and then frying the doughnuts in the morning is the best thing as the dough is easy to manage and roll after being rested.


Once you are ready to roll out the dough and fry the doughnuts, line a baking sheet with a dish towel and sprinkle some flour on it. Roll out the dough about 1/2 inch as Lara suggests in her recipe and then with the help of a cookie cutter or doughnut cutter, cut the rounds. If you do not want to make a round shape then you can also cut them into diamond shapes or squares like the shape of beignets.

Place the cutouts carefully onto the floured dish towel and let them rest for about another 30 minutes or so. You would know when they have risen, Lara suggests testing with the finger tip and if they spring back slowly then they are ready.

Heat a heavy deep pot of oil, as the doughnuts are proofed they are ready to be fried. With the help of a flat spatula lift them carefully and drop them in the oil . Fry them for about 1 minute on each side. The way to test your oil is ready to fry or not, I use old school method of dropping a small piece of dough and if it springs back to the surface of the oil then the oil is ready. If it sinks in and takes time to float up then give it few more minutes to heat up.

Use a slotted spoon to remove them from the pot once they are done. They will have nice golden brown color.

As I was making creme filled doughnuts I had to wait for them to cool down. But, there are so many ways you can have them. Incase, if you like glazed, then let them cool a little bit and then immediately dip them into the glaze. If you want sugar coated then also you follow the same method. But, incase if you wanted powdered sugar on it then you have to wait until they are completely cool.

Once they cooled down, we can fill them up. In order to do so, hollow the doughnut with the help of a chopstick and insert the piping bag filled with creme and withdrawing outside towards you as it is filled. Bring the creme a little bit outside as to know what it is filled with.

It’s always good to have a peekaboo of the delicious filling. Isn’t it?

Ready to dig in…I thought you might have already tasted the first filled one before moving onto filling the others. I did so, I could not wait until I filled all of them. Other doughnuts were busy cooling down, so what are going to do; of course give a taste to the first one. That’s the best part of blogging you taste everything you make.

Stop dreaming of the delish doughnuts filled with mango creme! Get up and make some, they are super easy and tasty and share them with friends and family.

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French Souffle Omlette

French Souffle Omelette! 

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Who doesn’t love eggs? Most of of us, as they are nutritious and also quick to prepare. I started eating eggs when I was almost in 3-4 grade. There is a reason I hadn’t tried eggs until. My mom is a strict vegetarian. Eggs were not even allowed in our house. But, there was a time when due to political reasons my dad had to stay in a secured place and that was his company guest house (sounds like a perfect bollywood movie). We had cops sitting outside our house to protect us. That’s when we would visit my dad because he could hardly come home to see us and we  would stay overnight with him on weekends and by the time Monday came  we would be back to home as schools can’t be missed. That’s when we got to eat omelettes that the chefs prepared for his breakfast. So, we got addicted to having omelettes. But, even today we have never prepared one at my mom’s home.

The rebel in me at that time, I started bringing once in a while eggs into the house for various purposes like using it as face mask or baking into cakes even though my mom didn’t like it.

When I moved to US, most times my husband would only make eggs whether it is this ‘Bhurjee” or omelette or any other breakfast with eggs. I would feel more comfortable using eggs in baked goods but savory eggs was kind of his department.

We love going out to have brunch. I think brunch is my favorite meal. And, one of our favorite place is The original pancake house. They serve delicious breakfast and brunch and no one can beat their Santa Fe omelette. The omelette is perfectly baked , yes it is a bakes omelette with nice amount of heat from the jalapenos, balanced by cheese, we like to add feta to it and then it is topped with a chimichurri sauce which give a nice herbal note.

I have tried to come up with recipe after many trials which close to the one that we love but not the same. I feel making a perfect omelette is a piece of art and eggs are personal, everyone likes them differently. Some like them gooey and soft. Some well done.


3 Large eggs, separated

1/2 cup of milk

1/4- 1/2 cup of feta, you can use any kind of cheese

Some chopped vegetables like onions, green and red bell peppers, tomatoes.

1 – 2 jalapenos, seeds removed and chopped

1 tablespoon dried herbs like oregano, basil

Salt to taste and black pepper

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Chop the vegetables in medium size. Then, take egg whites in a separate bowl and with the help of a blender whip the whites until they double in size and almost become white like the way we make meringue. Leave it aside till we assemble other ingredients.

In another bowl, take the yolks and whisk them  for few minutes till they become fluffy and add the milk, season it well with herbs and salt and pepper.

Add chopped vegetables to the yolk mix and then fold in the whites slowly and gradually till they are mixed.

Meanwhile, heat a nonstick pan and add a dollop of butter and throw the egg mix into it and let it cook at medium heat. Top it with crumbled feta and keep it in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes at 300 F  until the top is cooked and doubled in size.

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Give it a shot and let me know, if you have a favorite brunch spot or not and what are your favorite ways to eat eggs.

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Pear and Almond Tart and Our Paris Trip

Pear and Almond Tart  and our Paris Trip!


This time around I am not going to list the ingredients or provide a recipe.

DSC_6246 Poached pears

I have adapted the recipe from here.

DSC_6257Tart filled with almond filling and sugar poached pears

DSC_6284Tart is ready

But, I want to tell you all about our recent Europe Trip. Yes, finally we went took vacation for few days and spent a good time on beaches, on the streets of Paris and watched sunsets every day in Greece. So, we went to Paris and Greece for our vacation. Where do I start Europe is so different in so many ways than America.

While planning our trip to Greece we were getting a long layover but which we had to spend only at the airport , that didn’t attract me that we go to Paris airport and then take another flight to Greece without even getting out in Paris and getting the feel of Paris.

So, after a lot of research we found one flight which was giving us that perfect layover in Paris but just for one day. Unfortunately, my husband had to be back in certain time so we had to stick to our plan very strictly. I was even happy that we could visit Paris at least for a day. What if we couldn’t really get to see all that Paris had to offer. Next year or in future we can spend more time in Paris.

IMG_2942Outside train station Gare Du Nord


       Lovely building!

So, after booking our tickets and packing our bags we set off to Paris. We had decided that we would use the public transportation in Paris. So, as soon as we landed we got ready and went to our hotel which was very close to Gare Du Nord station which like the most important and busy train station. Our hotel was two minute walking distance. So, that was a relief. We set out to sightseeing once we checked in the hotel. Anyways, the room wasn’t ready for us so we left the bags with concierge and set off.


First thing on our list was Museum of Louvre. When we reached, I was totally aww struck I am not lying. What a building and the architecture not to be missed. We sat there , enjoyed the surrounding and took lots of pictures. We had planned to see the different exhibitions but when we saw the line to get in we decided that let’s skip it and keep it for our second visit to Paris. After spending  good time, we headed our ways to Palais De Garnier , the Palace of Opera.

DSC_4789Museum of Louvre


Looking at the beautiful building we were excited  about the interior.

There was in fact no line to buy the tickets to visit the Palace from inside so we decided to go in and see the beautiful palace.


Palais Garnier from OutsideIMG_4415Palais Garnier interior

The palace had such beautiful architecture and lovely art work on the walls. We sat there and admired the beautiful interior for sometime, saw the oil paintings and then decided to head out for lunch. I had already thought of having lunch cum brunch at Angelina’s but wasn’t sure whether we could have it or not. But, luckily Angelina’s has many locations and one of the location was close to us. So, we headed our way to lunch.

IMG_4424Late Lunch at Angelina’s Tea house

IMG_4425And, their famous Mont Blanc dessert

So, Mr. pickyeater ordered a simple herb omelette which came with salad and a caffe au creme and I went with Zucchini Quiche which was also accompanied with salad and for drink I had caffe au lait my favorite! Angelina’s is also famous for desserts, but we were kind of full and decided to order only one dessert and so we went ordered their popular Mont Blanc. It was made with a meringue , creme filled and chestnut filling. It tastes just like an Indian dessert that we make during fast, of course it is made with chestnut flour and so it resembled the taste.  Overall, Angelina’s was okay to us. We could have dined at a better place. The food was kind of bland in terms of seasonings. As we were heading out of the place, I saw Pierre Herme macaron parlor. Immediately, I told my husband we have to get them. I am glad that we didn’t eat more desserts at Angelina’s. We got the assorted ones and decided to have them while enjoying the view of Eiffel Tower.

After lunch, our next stop was to see Pont Alexander III. We spent about half an hour . It is a beautiful picnic spot. There were lot of boat cruises that we saw while we were sitting there.


Pont Alexander IIIDSC_4928We set out to our next stop which was the E. Dehillerin Shop. Honestly, I was super excited to buy something from the shop but as our luggage had directly been sent to Greece. We were left with no choice. But, they also ship overseas. I might order something online. I was so excited to see the copper pots hanging around in the shop.


E. Dehillerin shop (above pic) and copper pots hanging inside the shop (below pic)IMG_4431From there, we headed to famous lock bridge. I do not understand the craziness about tying a lock to the bridge. I have heard that it is causing a lot of problems to the local authorities as the bridge cannot really bare the weight of the locks. We just took a selfie over a lock. I don’t think lock symbolizes our love.

DSC_4970Famous Lock Bridge

DSC_4942Our, second last stop was the Arc De Triomphe. It is a famous monument in Paris as it honors all those who fought and died in France for the French Revolutionary.

DSC_4982Arc De Triomphe


The beautiful sculpture depicts the soldiers DSC_5080

Eiffel Tower!

Our last and final stop was Eiffel Tower. We had decided we would be spending dawn and then the night to see the lights. We sat in the park and enjoyed our macaroons that we had bought from Pierre Herme and waited for the sun to set and lights to sparkle. We wanted to see the twinkling lights, but we had heard that it starts around 10 o clock, but we were so tired that we decided to head out to our hotel and we also had to eat our dinner. But, exactly when we started leaving the Eiffel Tower started twinkling lights. And, we were so happy and excited to see it. That just made our day and trip to Paris successful. And, oh the macarons were so awesome although they were expensive. I think we have tried so many different flavors and also bakeries for macarons. But, I have to say these are our favorite, period. Unfortunately, the Laduree disappointed us. The macarons were okay.




Assorted Flavors of Macarons

 With this our day almost ended in Paris. We went to our hotel and ate at a nearby bistro. With more excitement to come our way, we slept in a cute and cozy hotel. Next day we had our early morning flights to Athena, Greece.

Bonjour and Merci Paris for giving us a wonderful day to remember. Oh, Paris of my dreams…

Hey, don’t forget the Pear and Almond Tart. Give it a shot! It comes out really delicious and dream about visiting Paris. Such a beautiful city.

DSC_6286Bon Appetite!