By Pratishtha Rana

Nutritionists say that one must eat all the seasonal ingredients to keep the mind and body healthy in that particular season. The rains bring with it an array of fruits and veggies, delighting the chefs. This season, we ask the culinary masters to share with our readers some of their easy yet yummy recipes that can be tried at home with friends and family.

Pickled Ice Apples (Tadgola) and Kokum Granita by Chef Pratik Sadhu of Masque

Pratik Sadhu, Executive Chef and Co-owner, Masque tells LuxeBook, “The menus at Masque are largely dictated by the seasons. Cooking with seasonal produce means you’re eating ingredients that are at their peak, and it’s also better for the environment.”

Monsoon Food Recipes
Pickled Tadgola and Kokum Granita by Chef Pratik Sadhu

INGREDIENTS

For Kokum granita:

  • Sugar- 100g
  • Water- 400g
  • Kokum juice- 350g
  • Lemon juice- 10g
  • Salt- 2g

Ice Apples (Tadgola):

  • Ice Apples (5 nos.)
  • Kokum juice- 200g
  • Sugar- 15g

For Garnish:

  • Coriander microgreens

METHOD

Kokum granita:

  • Melt sugar in water. Cool the water. Add remaining ingredients and freeze. Scrape as it freezes to make granita.

Ice Apples (Tadgola):

  • Peel the ice apples and cut them in big slices. Soak in kokum juice for 2-3 hours.

PLATING

  • Assemble the pieces of ice apples in a bowl and spoon the granita over and garnish with microgreens.
  • Serve immediately.

Fresh lotus root in Tamarind Broth or Vatha Kuzhambu by Chef and host Rakesh Raghunathan of Dakshin Diaries

Monsoon Food recipes
Vatha Kuzhambu by Chef Rakesh Raghunathan

INGREDIENTS

  • Tamarind – 1 tbsp tightly packed
  • Sambar powder – 1-2 tbsp
  • Fresh lotus root– 1 med size (cut into rounds)
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig
  • Salt as required
  • Sesame oil -4 tbsp
  • Jaggery – 1/4 tsp
  • Coconut paste or milk- 2 tbsp (optional)
  • Mustard seeds- 1 tsp
  • Fenugreek seeds- 1/2 tsp
  • Red chili – 3
  • Asafetida (Hing)- 1/4 tsp

METHOD

  • Soak tamarind in 3 cups of warm water and extract pulp. Discard fiber.
  • Heat oil in a wok, once hot and not smoking, splutter mustard, fenugreek seeds, asafetida, dry red chilies and fresh lotus root.
  • Add salt, curry leaves and sambhar powder and sauté.
  • Add the tamarind extract and let it boil until it thickens.
  • Check for salt and see if the raw taste of tamarind fades.
  • You will also notice the oil on all sides of the wok when cooked.
  • Add jaggery and mix well.

PLATING

  • Finish with the coconut paste/milk and serve hot with rice.

Ghee Mutton roast with spinach upma by Chef Vineet Bhatia from Ziya, The Oberoi

Monsoon Food Recipes
Ghee mutton roast with Spinach Upma by Chef Vinit Bhatia

INGREDIENTS

For upma:

  • Ghee- 60 gms
  • Mustard Seeds- 5 gms
  • Curry leaves- 20 nos.
  • Onions- 100 gms
  • Green chilies- 2 nos.
  • Semolina and spinach puree- 200 gms

For Ghee Mutton:

  • Mutton- 500 gms
  • Ginger garlic paste- 20 gms
  • Turmeric- 5 gms
  • Ghee- 100 gms

For masala:

  • Dry red chilies and Tamarind pulp – 10 gms
  • Garlic, Kashmiri red chili powder, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds- 5 gms, each
  • Coriander seeds, pepper corn- 10 gms, each
  • Mace and cloves- 1-2 nos.
  • Cinnamon stick- 300 gms
  • Fried Onion
  • Curry leaves- 10 nos.
  • Salt and Lemon juice- to taste

METHOD

For Upma:

  • In a pan heat ghee and add mustard seeds
  • Once the mustard seeds splitter, add curry leaves, chopped chilies and onions
  • Sauté the onions till they are translucent and add semolina and roast it together.
  • Add spinach puree and season with salt and cook for 2-3 mins until it thickens.

For Ghee Mutton:

  • Marinate mutton dices with ginger and garlic paste and keep aside for 15 mins.
  • Next, sauté it for few minutes.
  • Add water and cook till the mutton softens.

For Masala:

  • In a heavy bottom pan, add all the dry masalas and onions and roast them to brown color
  • Add tamarind pulp and mix finely after the masala is cooled down
  • In another pan, add ghee and masala paste with curry leaves
  • Cook till the ghee separates and finally, add mutton and sauté for few mins.

PLATING

  • Place the upma at the bottom of the bowl and arrange ghee mutton on top of the upma

Prawn Pickle, Chef Aniket Das of The Westin Mumbai Garden City

Chef Aniket Das recalls one of his childhood memories and tells LuxeBook, With the approach of monsoon, the fishing season comes to a halt. I remember my mother buying fresh prawns in bulk beforehand and make pickle out of it. One can savour this tangy, spicy prawn pickle with piping hot home-made khichadi to complete the meal.”

Monsoon Food Recipes
Prawn Pickle by Chef Aniket Das

INGREDIENTS

For Marinating and Cooking Prawns:

  • 250 grams small prawns
  • 2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon red chilli powder
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil

 For the Pickle:

  • 60 grams ginger and peeled garlic
  • 20 green chilies (chopped)
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil and vinegar

Masala Powders (Spices):

  • 1½ tablespoon Salt
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 tablespoon red chilli powder
  • 2 tablespoon black pepper powder
  • 2 teaspoon turmeric

METHOD

  • Clean, peel and de-vein the prawns. Mix well with salt and turmeric and set it on a strainer to drain excess water
  • Let it marinate for 30 minutes.
  • Heat quarter cup of oil in a pan and add in the prawns and red chilli powder. Fry on low flame for 5 minutes until cooked. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Add the remaining quarter cup of oil in the pan and add in the crushed ginger and garlic mixture. Sauté for two minutes. Continue to sauté with added green chilies, until the garlic and ginger mix is nicely roasted.
  • Add in masala powders and salt and fry for a minute.
  • Add in the prawns, vinegar and quarter cup of water. Do not add vinegar all at once. First add ¼ cup of vinegar and taste it. Add more according to your taste. Let it simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Post 5 minutes, the mixture will turn slightly dry and the oil would start to float on top completely. Switch off the flame and allow it to cool for an hour.

STORE IT

  • Transfer the mixture to a ceramic or a glass jar. You can store it in refrigeration for up to a month.

Organic Vegetable and Finger Millet Quesadilla, Chef Ashis Rout of Swissôtel Kolkata

Monsoon Food Recipes
Finger Millet and Quesedilla by Chef Ashis Rout

INGREDIENTS

  • Finger Millet Flour (Ragi) – 120 gms
  • Refined flour- 200 gms
  • Horse gram flour- 100 gms
  • Olive Oil- 5 tbsp.
  • Milk- 75 ml
  • Salt- 1 tsp

For stuffing:

  • Carrot, cucumber and yellow zucchini- 1 no. each
  • Chopped Soya nuggets- 80 gms
  • Lentil sprouts- 100 gms
  • Shredded Bakchoy- 120 gms
  • Crushed pepper and salt
  • Olive oil- 50 ml

For refried beans:

  • Horse Gram- 60 gms
  • Green chillies- 5 gms
  • Chopped coriander and celery
  • Tomato sauce- 80 ml
  • Garlic cloves- 5 nos.
  • Grated cheddar

METHOD

  • Make dough combining millet flour, refined flour, horse gram flour, olive oil and salt.
  • Make it into thin sheets and cut rounds of 7 inches diameter.
  • Make a stuffing, using carrot, cucumber, yellow zucchini, shredded bokchoy, silken tofu and lentil sprouts.
  • Add salt and crushed pepper for seasoning.
  • Stuff the sheet with the stuffing & cheese, cook it on hot plate with little olive oil.

For Re-Fried Beans:

  • Boil horse gram and puree the 40% of boiled horse gram.
  • Sauté chopped garlic and chopped celery.
  • Add 40% of pureed horse gram and the remaining part and cook for a while.
  • Add tomato sauce, chopped chilies and cook.
  • Add seasoning and chopped coriander leaves.

PLATING

  • Serve the Quesadilla with re-fried beans & fresh tomato salsa.

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