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Recipes - Spring


Buckwheat and Sprouts Khichadi


½ cup yellow Moong dal
¾ cup buckwheat
3/4 cup mixed sprouts
1 tsp oil
2 whole peppercorns
1 to 2 cloves
½ tsp cumin seeds
½ tsp asafetida
1/4tsp turmeric pwd


Clean and wash the moong dal and buckwheat together. Drain and Keep aside.

Heat the oil in a pressure cooker and add the peppercorns, cloves and cumin seeds. When they crackle add the asafetida,mooong dal and buckwheat and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the turmeric pwd, salt and approx. 4 cups of water and pressure cook for 2 ot 3 whistles.  Serve hot


Tofu rolls in betel leaves


1 (12-ounce) package firm tofu
1-1/2 tablespoons canola oil
2 shallots, finely diced
1 small yellow onion, chopped and fried
1 tablespoon cilantro, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
3.5 ounces green lentils  1/2 cup
2 teaspoons fresh ginger, thinly sliced
1 small carrot, shredded
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
1 (2-ounce) package dried bean thread noodles
2 dozen betel leaves, stemmed


For the tofu: Drain any liquid from the tofu. Pat dry with a paper towel. Slice the tofu into 1/2-inch thick pieces. In a large pan, heat about 2 tablespoons of oil; pan-fry the tofu slices until slightly golden. Don't overcook the pieces or they'll start to get hard. The tofu should still be moist. Transfer the tofu to a plate. Once the tofu is cool enough to handle, cut the pieces into very thin strips. Set aside.

For the bean thread noodles: Place the whole package of dried bean thread noodles in a bowl. Don't forget to cut the little threads and discard them! Soak the noodles in cold water for 30-40 minutes and drain. Chop into 1 inch threads. Set aside.

For the green lentils: Place the lentils in a small saucepan, barely cover with water and slowly cook for about 30 minutes. It will form a dry paste. Set aside.

For the filling: In a saucepan, heat 2 teaspoons of canola oil. Add the garlic and 1 finely minced shallot. Cook until slightly golden. Transfer to a bowl (don't drain). Let cool. In a large bowl, combine the shredded carrots, soaked bean thread noodles, lentils, ginger, tofu and cilantro. Mix well. Add the garlic and shallot with oil, raw shallot and onion. Sprinkle with salt and sugar. Mix well. Refrigerate the mixture until you're ready to wrap.

Check seasoning: In a small pan, heat about 1 teaspoon of peanut oil. Add about 1 tablespoon of the tofu mixture. Cook for about 2-3 minutes. Taste the filling. Adjust seasoning if necessary. Season with more salt and pepper if necessary.

Assembly time:

Place a betel leaf, vein side up, and spoon about 1 tablespoon of the tofu filling at the base of the leaf. Form a log with the filling and roll the wrapper once towards the top corner of the leaf. You want to make sure not to over-fill the leaf; otherwise the excess filling will burst out of the sides while cooking. Using kitchen shears, snip the excess ends of the leaf. Secure a toothpick. Repeat until all the ingredients are used.

Brush a grill pan with the remaining oil. Place the tofu stuffed betel leaves on the grill pan. Sear them for about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove and discard the toothpicks.

Serve immediately!

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