January 14, 2008


Hello everybody, wish you a very happy Sankranthi/Pongal to all you! I will resist cooking any sweets atleast until next month!!:)

Now on to a hearty meal!
I am posting a delicious combination of Kashmiri Kidney beans masala and Wheat Bread Baturas (my mom's style), I made last week.Nothing makes you feel better than sitting down with a plate of comfort food, wouldn't you say?
Rajma is also called Kidney beans in English which is different from Rajma, a Punjabi dish which is also made with Kidney beans I posted a while ago, usually served with rice in India. I am talking about Kashmir grown petite Kidney beans cooked in onion-yogurt masala in this post, not the Rajma dish itself. Did you get all that?:D

I am sending this platter of my comfort food to Meeta from "What's for lunch Honey?" blog for her Monthly Mingle theme of "Comfort Foods". Thanks Meeta!:)

Bread Baturas and Kashmiri Rajma masala:
Serve these soft and delicious Bread Baturas with Rajma masala, sliced red onion and a green chilli pepper. Chilli is just for garnish, don't eat that thing!:D

When I was a teenager growing up in India, bread making and cake baking at home was not the norm. It was a luxury to own the little electric oven and bake quick breads which we used to call cakes! Yeast was not available either, now I hear EVERYTHING is accessible there which is wonderful. To cut the story short, my mom used 3-4 slices of regular white bread to replace the yeast to make Baturas softer than the Aloo Baturas or regular Baturas we made at home. These bread Baturas are that version. I used whole wheat bread to mix with this dough which makes it a tad bit more nutritious and adds a great flavor too!

Baturas made with Whole Wheat bread:

To make Baturas, you need these:

1 1/2 cup plain flour (or white bread flour),
3 slices of whole wheat bread,(Crust is okay too,I add it but you can cut them off)
3 tbsp plain yogurt,
1/2 cup milk to soak the bread,
1 tsp salt.
To make them:
1. First soak the bread in milk for 5 mins, squeeze and mash well until it looks like thick, smooth mashed potato.
2. Add this to flour and all the ingredients, mix and knead to a stiff dough adding just enough water by tbsps. DO NOT make it too soft.
3. Cover and let it rest for atleast for 3-4hrs. Knead again, make bit smaller than Tennis ball size rounds, roll out to 5-6" circles,about 1/8" thick,cover with a towel until the oil heats up. Do not fry until oil is hot to avoid oil clogged Baturas.
4. Heat oil to 375F (hot), then fry each Batura as shown here for Pooris and drain on paper towel. Serve hot.
Note: If you want little stiffer and puffed Baturas than soft, you can add 2 tbsp rice flour or cream of wheat(fine Rava/semolina) to the the flour when mixing and kneading.

Susan from "The well seasoned cook" blog has asked us to cook with beans for her "My Legume Love Affair" event. As we all know, beans and pulses are easiest to cook with for all of us from India. I am sure she will be flooded with Indian dishes full of beans! Here is one from me for you Susan. Enjoy and thanks for hosting!:)

Red Kidney beans in general,are a very good source of cholesterol-lowering fiber,minerals,Vitamin B1,Iron, low in cholesterol, provide virtually fat-free high quality protein combined with plain cooked rice, according to WHF foods.
Kashmiri Kidney beans are beautiful in appearance, lot smaller like the size of a Navy beans as you can see in the collage, almost half the size of regular red Kidney beans we usually see in the grocery store with intense red color and very flavorful to cook. Kashmiri Kidney beans are available in dry form in any Indian grocery store. You need to soak them overnight and pressure cook gently until they are soft but still whole, not mushy. This is my own recipe, not my mom's btw!:)

Kashmiri Kidney beans masala:

You need these to feed 4 or more people:

1 1/2 cups of dry Kashmiri Kidney beans (or you can use regular Kidney beans),
1 tbsp butter + 1 tbsp oil,
2 large onions,
1" fresh ginger and 2 large Garlic, ground to paste,
1/2 cup Tomato sauce,
2 tbsp plain yogurt or sour cream,
1/2 tsp chilli pd,
1/4 tsp turmeric,
2 tsp Chickpea flour/Besan (or cornstarch) to thicken
(1 tbsp Coriander seeds powder,
1/2 tbsp Cumin seeds powder,
1/2 tsp Garam masala)

(You can skip all 3 of the above dry spice powders, if you add 2 tbsp of MDH brand Kitchen King Masala you get in the Indian grocery store which gives a great taste. That's what I usually use in this dish)
Aromatics to garnish:
1/4 tsp Cardamom pd,
a pinch of Nutmeg gratings
Cilantro to garnish.

To make Rajma masala:
1. Soak Beans over night, cook in the pressure cooker with some water until soft but whole, not mushy. Set aside.
2. Slice onions,add a cup of water, cover and microwave for 5-10 mins until opaque and soft. Yeah, it stinks but what can you do?:D
3. When onion is cooler, grind in the blender to coarse paste. Set aside.
4. Heat a deep dish, add butter+oil, heat. Add ground onion,salt and turmeric, stir for 5-10 mins on medium heat. Add ginger-garlic paste, stir for 2 mins.
5. Add all the dry spices, mix well. Pour in Tomato sauce,let it cook until you see it thicken and shiny on top for 5-8mins.Adjust the salt and chilli pd.
6. Turn down the heat to low, add yogurt and mix well, simmer for 15mins.
7. Add all the aromatic powder, minced cilantro and mix well. Tastes better the next day or two. Chill in fridge and reheat when needed in the microwave.

Bon Apetit!:))

Enjoy Foodie's Hope and Aroma, have a wonderful week!


Anonymous said...

posting on monday
sis u changed a lot
nwyays happy to hear abt u
luv those wheat baturas and rajma masala...i have a can....vl try it.
read lots of books sis....
btw i just luv kite runner...your blood just boils at times.....doesnt it
have a great time
we all miss u

FH said...

EVERYTHING is changed indeed!:D
LOVED Kite Runner, will list the books I have read so far next time. Any day is posting day for me now Anusha!:)

Keshi said...

hey Asha!

**When I was a teenager growing up in India, bread making and cake baking at home was not the norm

WOW so u did well. Cos look how FINE a cake-maker u hv turned out to be!

**may be twice a month or so.


Anyways as long as ur ard, Im happy :) HUGGGGGGGGGGGZ!


Anonymous said...

Nice bread bhatura and the rajma is so colourful Asha. Both go very well each other I feel. Enjoy your time and try know more about YOU to achieve your goal Asha which is very important. When time permits do write. Have a good day. Viji (Vcuisine)

Anonymous said...

This seems to be a wise decision. And yes we all have our priorities and we should stick to them. I am there with you on this....:)

Hope we can discuss the books we read, for a change.

Have a great time.

FH said...

Viji, Keshi, Bha, thanks. Yes, I will take it easy but will visit you whenever I can, I promise!:)

Srivalli said...

wow...its good to be here again...nice to know you are enjoying your time...read all that you want and post when you can...Its real fun checking out your posts...

FH said...

Thanks for your support Sri, I will list the books I read. Hugs to you!:)

ChrisB said...

You have so many fans that I can just imagine how much time you spent visiting everyone. You musn't feel obliged to visit and comment.It has to remain fun for you. I visit blogs I enjoy and quite a few never (or rarely) leave a comment on my posts. I always look for you on a Weds.

FH said...

Chris,thanks for understanding!:)
It's always a pleasure to visit you, something to think other than food all the time!:D
I don't mind visiting blogs at all most of the time but will be taking it easy now and make some time for reading.

TBC said...

I hope you are taking it easy and are finding the time now to enjoy other aspects of life besides blogging.:-)

vimmi said...

Great that u have enabled ur comments again. Thanks for ur comment on doodhi parantha. I had a question. Which brand of whole wheat flour do you use for rotis. I have an electric cooking system and rotis tend to become a bit hard.

Amna said...

HI Asha, always been a loyal visitor to your blog for many months now, will always wish for your well being and happiness, its always gud to have sometime for ourselves on our hands, being a voracious reader myself, here 's wishing you all the best in all your future endeavours.

Anonymous said...

ur post popped up on my foodblogs list.....thats how i know u posted it on monday :)
but i cant tell u how glad am to post the first comment
bale bale....

Anonymous said...

bhatura and rajma looks good Asha! Hope u're taking it easy and reading those wonderful books! Enjoy :-)

FH said...

Tbc, Vimmi, Amna thank you so much for your support. I am enjoying reading and taking time cook and spending time with kids. It really feels great.

Vimmi, I use Lakskmi brand atta most of the time. We don't have many choice here for atta, but L brand seems to work for me. Some Atta made of Durum wheat tends to make rotis hard, which I don't like either. Try different brands to find out which is suitable for you!:)

FH said...

Anusha, I think you can be first for every post now a days, I hardly have 10 comments here! Hahaha!!

Hi M, I am enjoying the free time, putting it to good use too. Thanks sweetie!:)

Mandira said...

Phew! you had us worried there asha with no comments :) glad that you enabled it again. Just take your time to enjoy life and continue blogging :)

FH said...

Thank you daring Mandira!:)
I scared myself too for a while, but I am back relaxed!:D

Kay said...

dear asha, your blog has been a huge inspiration for me and it will always be. thanks for sharing the blog with us.

I hope you get to enjoy everything that you enjoyed before and much more. I understand your decision, esp. after having taken one myself not too long ago. (but I just quit blogging for time being till I feel I've sorted it all out).

Much love to you!

FH said...

Thank you Kay. I really appreciate it. Many don't understand how it is, but we have to decide what's good for us sometimes and deal with it. That's what I did, I am much happier now!:))
Enjoy the blogs, hugs to you. Take care.

Anonymous said...

Hi I read your blog regularly.This post was a complete shock.Seems like you are addicted to blogging and you feel bad if you dont visit all blogs or don't reply to every comment.But disabling comments and the long post on how little time you have was like blaming your readers for your addiction ;)Nice to see you have enabled comments again.You can reply only queries on your recipes and acc to me no need to reply each and every one who says what a good post you have each wednesday.Most of the time they just write it without meaning much.I was wondering how u come up with so many recipes in each post.Relax since blogging isnt your job it's just a hobby.It shouldn't be taxing for you.Just my 2 cents.I admired your enthu but this post looks like a dead end where you need to take it slow.Have fun doing things u like and do post once in a while as they make a interesting read for us.

KonkaniBlogger said...

Hey Asha, Nice recipe as usual :)..You must be having a really strong will power to come up and then stick to all ur resolutions. So, good luck and do what makes you happy :)..

EC said...

Great to know that you are finding time now for other activities..i too have been noting that i tend to miss out so many of my other work once i get into blogging..Oh, now that you will post anyday, i need not wait for wednesdays...yaah. Baturas with bread look great

Bharathy said...

Thnks ton for Enabling the comments!..:)...felling soooo happy and releived!!!:)

Menu Today said...

Hi Asha,
All your Kerala dishes came out well and Rajma Masala soaked in tomato juice very colourful.

Take your own time to post.
I am ur side only, whenever i feel i will post. Enjoy reading books and taking care of ur kids.

Roopa (KitchenAromas) said...

Asha di! I am just returning to blog hopping slowly after our big big move back to India and I was in for a surprise! I have always admired your energy and enthusiasm at blogging and encouraging other bloggers. But I couldn't agree with you more that real life comes before blogging! I will stop by your blog to check out your new posts and the ones I have missed! Take care!
- Roopa

FH said...

Anon, thanks for your comment and insight.I appreciate it and will not reply to every comment from my next post unless they have any q's. I was joking about "addiction" btw, I am much stronger than that!:D
I have already wrote that it's nothing personal about bloggers or blogging in general,it's all me but I did feel guilty if I don't visit EVERYBODY EVERYDAY though, that's why I backed off for a while just give me some time to regroup and I am not visiting every blog now and taking it easy.
Posting 2-3 dishes or less per post is my goal now like in this post and absolutely will not be feeling guilty about not visiting blogs, I have conditioned myself!:D
Thanks again, I know you do care. Enjoy and next time tell me who you are!!;)

FH said...

Thank you Maya, EC, Bharathy, MT, Roopa, glad you support and understand girls. I really feel lucky to have so many caring blog friends. Hugs to you!:))

Anonymous said...

Blogging does take a long time and sure is addictive. I gave up on keeping track of all the blogs that are up and running now. AT home, I get no time and at work, I have the guilt factor:) Anyway, Love rajma and your's looks yummy. Feels good to leave a comment here BigS! Have not dont it in quite a while. Take care and enjoy your books!

FH said...

Hema, you take your time girl, no worries. It won't be addictive if we get our priorities right and stop feeling guilty! I had to learn that in the past 2 weeks the hard way!:D
I am good now, I can resist! YESSS!! Enjoy the recipes.Except for RCI, I will keep dishes to 2 or 3 from now on!:)
Hope you are all doing well at home. Winter is halfway over, hold on!:))

Jayashree said...

Nice pics and recipe, as always. Iam glad you've enabled comments again....helps me let u know how much I appreciate your effort....

Mythreyee said...

love the baturas and the rajma masala is just mouth watering. I wanted to let you know that I tried parotta from spice india online, posted by mullai. It came out really well. She has a video too. The only drawback is , it needs loads of oil. It is definitely worth the try, once in a while.

Padmaja said...

Asha!!Its all about what and how you feel asha. So get going n stock your shelves with amazing books, I for one can't resist a good novel.Take your time and enjoy anything you do but I will always wait for any happenings at your lovely blogs

FH said...

Jaya, thanks girl. I know most of you genuinely care about me and my blogs, really mean it when you all leave comments. I am glad too that I didn't make these blogs private!!:)

Good to see you Myth. Are you talking about Kerala Parotta? I think I have seen it, not sure though. But yeah, it does need lot of oil to make it soft and pliable. I will try sometimes next month.
I have one Malaysian Roti Canai recipe here at FH too. I know they taste great with veg stew!:)

FH said...

Padmaja sweetheart, I NEED more friends like you girl, thank you so much.
I have already read few books, watched few good old movies so far, been cooking quite a few great dishes too.Just made few changes to the way I blog and I am quite happy!:))
Take care, looking forward to your posts as well.

Laavanya said...

Asha, how are you? The bhaturas look great and that's a swell idea to add bread to soften it. Good to know you are having fun and doing fine.

FH said...

I am really doing well Laavanya, thanks buddy. Bread gives the flour a bit of yeast boost,so they really get soft. Try it!:)

Manju said...

im soo glad you enabled comments again!! if you wanna discuss more about foods..you can mayb try joining shelfari..its a good forum to have a list of your books...join in discussions regarding various books..just a suggestion!!

Ti said...

you really good cooking... im so jealous!

lakshmi said...

bad bad girl replying to each and every comment. :D

you really gave anon a shock - i think i should open a blogging de addiction center - i see good demand and market prospects - what say? ;)

FH said...

Hi Super chef, thanks girl. I will check out that although I am not really good at writing reviews but it will be fun to read!:))

Ti, I just checked out your blog. You are a great cook too. Loved the Ragout dish!:))
Thanks for visiting , enjoy your award.

FH said...

HeHe!! This is my last reply to any comment, no more replying from my next post. I just posted a new one along with a surprise for you!:)
Yeah, great idea, you have so many of us as clients already and you can money money too!!;D
Addiction is serous, I would say I got little obsessed with my blogs. That is almost cured now, one less patient for ya!:D

Bharathy said...

Hugs to you too Asha!..Sorry to have forgotten to comment abt the wonderful spread here last time when I visited here..:)..felt soo happy to see you back! thats why :)

Havnt tried bhaturae with wheat!But for sure they are wholesome than the reg maida ones!..love the unusual combo with rajma masala :)!

Cute pictures of kids!:)

FH said...

You are welcome Bharathy, always a pleasure to see you here. We had one day of snow, they are all gone now!:D
Have a great weekend.

MR said...

love the idea of wheat batura , good now I know what to make this weekend.
U enjoy ur time with kids they grow up in no time ,
also with urself.
and drop by sometimes too if time permits:)

Dalicia said...

exercise is good for your health. that was my purpose. forget about
being a size 2..that isn't happening to me! i enjoying reading books too.

i always like to explore my artistic ability. such as painting...but never had a chance to do much of it. so i hope i'll get to do explore more things.

keep up with what you're doing! :)

FH said...

Hi MR, thanks girl. I dropped in and commented on your Kerala post, beautiful.I loved all the pics, will be visiting you of course! My new plan is to click on the profile when somebody comments here to go and say hello there in their blogs, saves me time!!:))

Dalicia, I know!! Forget about size 2, I just to be little firmer! Some things are just unachievable, why try!:D
I am really enjoying the reading though, feels great. Have a great weekend D!:)

Reeta Skeeter said...

I had the Kashmiri Rajmah (the ones with more gravy) and rice at the Kashmiri food fest at Dilli Haat sometime back. It was served with mustard sauce made in dahi, which they told me is done in some aprts of J-K.
Being a Punjabi, I somehow cannot imagine Rajma without rice :D So I did NOT get that :P
Thanks for enabling the comments again! :D

Unknown said...

I read this post you wrote few days back and I truly agree with you regarding the changes you made with your blogging, infact I too got inspired reading that and trying to keep my hands away from the computer :) ....well, I seem to have more time for other activities which iam glad :) ....By the way, I tried this kashmiri masala dish and packed it for lunch for my husband. It came out well , thank you:)

FH said...

Hi Reeta, I know you like Rajma with rice, remember last time I posted Rajma?;D
This is different, just a Kidney beans masala dish for parathas etc. I loved the taste of Kashmiri Kidney beans btw.

Hello, rv. Thanks for your support and the feedback darling, glad you and hubby enjoyed it.
Few people felt offended when I wrote about it, even though I clearly said it's nothing to do with others,it's just my feeling but most bloggers understood me because we all go thru' same stress and lack of time! I am really taking my time now,blog only when I have some free time!:)

Inji Pennu said...

Asha dear,
I would say a great decision. Taking it slow will give you a good break. Bravo! Hope you are enjoying the new found freedom.

FH said...

I am Inji! Thank you for your support. I am reading more and blogging in a better way now, feels great!:)

Uj said...

Loved Rajma masala will try it this weekend.. I am visiting all your recipes that you have posted till date..Never know when blogger will be blocked again. There is a way to access it but i can only view current post. I cannot even make a comment :( Will let you know when i try this

FH said...

Hi Uj, blogger blocks you there,it's not fair! Sorry about that but when you can get in, save the recipes if you can. I just posted my last post Y'day with Éclairs and Biscuits and I will be on break until Sept. Have fun cooking, see you then.Take care!:))

sue said...

the batura is something that I WILL try looks so yummy. I just made Louisiana style rice and beans to day very similar except the tomato cilantro and ginger.

FH said...

Hope you try Baturas, Sue. They are almost like Native American Fry breads,only fluffier, not exactly healthy but yummy to have occasionally. Love Rice and Kidney beans! :)