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The Nosh Pit- Kosher Indian Recipes

India may have a thriving Jewish community, but if you're unable to hop on a plane to Mumbai, here are some suggestions for Kosher Indian recipes you can make at home.

By: Sarah Bauder
Published: October 21st, 2013 in Culture » Food » Recipes

It could get messy, but it will always be memorable. Every week in the Nosh Pit, we’ll lead the gathering of an impassioned group of foodies, offering delectable dishes, seasonal treats, and other goodies to nosh upon.

We’ll introduce the timely scenario – what to bring to an obligatory sports party or contribute to a spring picnic--and share some auspicious recipes. Spice up a soiree, diversify your dinner, or help convince those reluctant souls that ‘soy substitute’ is not synonymous with ‘stale.’

Recipes are best shared, passed from one sated soul to the next, with everyone adding just their own flair, and creating endless yummy possibilities. At a concert, people shed inhibition and share passion in a moment of synergy and excitement; they will do the same in the Nosh Pit, directing their unparalleled enthusiasm towards food.

The exotic flavours and aromas of Indian food make it a culinary favourite for many folks. Likewise, there are thriving Jewish communities in different parts of India, complete with kosher shops and restaurants. However, one doesn’t need to hop on a plane and light off half way around the world to enjoy kosher Indian food. Nor do you need to make reservations at your local kosher Indian restaurant. Take a look at these delicious recipes to make at home for your family and friends.

Leftover Rice Vegetable Biryani from Joy of Kosher

Ingredients:

For masala sauce:

1 tablespoon cashews

1 tablespoon dried coconut

1/3 cup vegetable oil

2 small onions grated (about ½ cup when grated)

½ bay leaf

1 thin piece of cinnamon

4 cloves

2 cardamom pods

1 teaspoon ginger paste

1 teaspoon garlic paste

1/2 cup tomato sauce

1/2 cup plain yogurt

1 teaspoon garam masala

2 teaspoons chili powder

1/4 teaspoon cumin powder

1 cup roasted cauliflower

1 cup sliced mushrooms, sauteed

1/2 cup frozen peas

For layering:

4 cups leftover basmati rice

1/2 cup chopped cilantro leaves

1/2 cup chopped mint leaves

1/2 teaspoon saffron dissolved in 1/2 cup warm milk

2 tablespoons ghee

Directions:

Grind the cashew with dried coconut into a smooth paste, using as little water as possible. Set aside. Heat oil in a large skillet. Add grated onions, and cook on low heat till the onions are brown, about 10 minutes. Then add bay leaf, cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom. Bring the heat up to medium and stir for about 1 minute. Add ginger and garlic and stir another 30 seconds. Then add the coconut/cashew paste and stir. Add tomato sauce and stir, cook for a few minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and add the yogurt, mixing well.
Return the skillet to the stove. Turn heat to low, and add garam masala, chili powder, and cumin. Stir for 1 minute. Add the roasted cauliflower, sauteed mushrooms and peas and 1/2 cup water. Cook for 10 minutes until veggies are well coated. Taste the gravy and adjust salt if needed. Remember: this gravy will be spicy, but when you add the rice to it later, everything will balance out. Now you are ready to layer the biryani. Take a large baking dish or pot. Lightly oil the inside.
Layer everything in this order – half the rice, half the chopped cilantro, half the chopped mint, all the vegetables and gravy, remaining half of the rice, saffron dissolved in milk, remaining half the cilantro and mint. Drizzle the top with ghee. Cover the baking dish and bake in a 350f oven for 15 minutes or till the rice is cooked through. Turn the oven off, and let the biryani sit in the hot oven another 10 minutes. Enjoy!

Indian Spinach (Saag) from Yummly

Ingredients:

1 medium onion, chopped

2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger

6 garlic cloves, chopped

2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

1/2 teaspoon cayenne

1/2 teaspoon garam masala

1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom

2 pounds spinach leaves, chopped

1 cup low-fat plain yogurt

1 teaspoon kosher salt

Directions:

In a 6- to 8-qt. pot, cook onion in oil over medium heat until softened, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook 2 minutes. Add ginger and spices and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Working in batches, stir in spinach and cook until wilted, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in yogurt and salt. Serve with steamed basmati rice and warm naan (Indian flatbread). Enjoy!

Potato Bhajee from The Shiksa

Ingredients:

3/4 tsp whole coriander or 1/2 tsp powdered coriander spice

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/2 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp salt

Black pepper to taste

1 lb. peeled potatoes (Russet or Yukon Gold)

4 small onions, peeled and sliced

1/2 tsp minced fresh garlic

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. If using whole coriander seed, pour the seeds into dry skillet. Toast them over medium heat for 3-5 minutes, stirring constantly, till fragrant. Crush the seeds to a powder using a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder. Measure out 1/2 tsp of coriander powder; reserve. In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, coriander powder, turmeric, salt and pepper. Slice the potatoes into rounds about 1/4 inch thick; make sure all slices are of an even thickness. Place them on a baking sheet. Spray the sheet with nonstick cooking spray, or line the sheet with nonstick foil, if you have it-- it will help keep the potatoes from sticking. Brush each potato slice with a layer of the spiced oil. Turn the slices and brush the other sides with another layer of oil. Place baking sheet on the middle rack of the oven. Let the potato slices roast for 15 minutes. Remove the sheet from the oven and flip the potato slices. Roast for another 10 minutes, then set aside on a plate. Place the onion slices in a large saute pan. Pour the leftover oil from the baking sheet over the top of the onions, along with the reserved spiced oil. Stir the onions to coat them with the oil. Turn heat to medium and let the onions warm up, stirring frequently, till they begin to fry. Add potatoes to the pan and gently toss them with the onions, being careful not to break them apart. Let the mixture continue to fry for a few minutes longer until the onions caramelize at the edges. Enjoy!

Related articles: Nosh Pit, Kosher, Indian Food, Indian, Mumbai, Recipes, Curry, Spinach
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Since this rare convergence of Thanksgiving and Hanukkah will only happen once in our lifetime, we may as well enjoy it with as many sumptuous recipes as possible!

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