Cooking has always been my passion! It is therapeutic to me — especially when I am back in my familiar surroundings dishing out something for the family. I believe in simple living and that reflects in my cooking as well. So if you all have been wondering about what goes on in my kitchen, here’s a sneak peak into my kitchen life!
I prefer to go minimalistic while preparing my dishes. A light meal cooked with just the right spices is ideal. Given that I am a mother to a 3-year-old, I have to take care of her food requirements and always try to include Indian flavours on her plate. The regular lunch or dinner I make at my place mostly includes lentils — our ghar ki daal — with a non-vegetarian or vegetarian side dish and some fries. I usually don’t carry carbohydrates to the office, but prefer to have a full bowl of daal and sabzi for lunch. My hubby prefers roti, but our little munchkin loves rice being a perfect Bengali. Our dinner is, however, an elaborate affair as we get a chance to dine together.
I am a bit choosy about spices I use for cooking. I do prefer spices that I ground at home to get the best flavour and aroma, but it takes a lot of effort. At times, I purchase the ones I feel are on a par with home-ground spices.
Recently, I was about to re-stock my spice rack, when Tata Sampann surprised me by sending over a huge box containing some basic spices and some ready-mix spices for daal, chhole and paneer.
I have received a packet of 100g Tata Sampann Red chilli Powder, 200g Tata Sampann Turmeric, 100g Punjabi Chhole Masala, 100g pack of Tata Sampann Paneer and 100g Tata Sampann Daal Tadka Masala.
• 100g Tata Sampann Red chilli Powder: INR 36
• 200g Tata Sampann Turmeric Powder: INR 67
• 100g Punjabi Chhole Masala priced: INR 60
• 100g pack of Tata Sampann Paneer Masala: INR 77
• 100g Tata Sampann Daal Tadka Masala priced: INR 57
I would anyway buy their unpolished Chana Daal for their goodness as compared to the polished versions, but Tata Sampann spices were new to me. So thankful as I was, one fine day I decided to explore and put them to test:
For me, the first test of any spice (except those I grind myself) is dependent on the aroma. When I opened the packets of Red Chili Powder and Turmeric Powder, I was satisfied with their freshness. After using both the spices in my everyday dishes, I was satisfied with the taste as well.
For me, quality checking of any spice (except those I ground personally) is dependent on the aroma first. When I opened the packets of Red Chili Powder and Turmeric Powder I was completely satisfied with the fresh aroma coming from the packets and after using both the spices I was satisfied with the taste as well.
The Daal Tadka Masala, Paneer Masala and Punjabi Chhole Masala had rustic texture and were packed in 20g packs to retain the freshness. In my kitchen, I hardly make Punjabi Chhole once a month, so in a family of 3, a 100g packet of spice can be used at least five! Do the math now!
While the Tata Sampann spices are packed in 20g pouches, I immediately opened one to make Chhole Aloo Masala.
Here’s the recipe:
My little pumpkin loves her portion of Chhole with a touch of Aloo and she loves moderately spiced curry with her rice.
- Dry Chickpeas / Kabuli Chhole: 200g
- Potato: 2 (cubed)
- Onion: 1 (chopped)
- Ginger-garlic Paste: 1 Tsp.
- Pureed Tomato: 3 Tbsp.
- Whole Bay leaf: 1
- Whole cinnamon sticks: 1"
- Clove: 3-4
- Green Cardamom: 2
- Black Cardamom: 1
- Tata Sampann Punjabi Chole Masala: 20g
- Red Chili Powder: ½ Tsp.
- Turmeric Powder: 1 Tsp.
- Garam Masala Powder: ½ Tsp.
- Salt: to taste
- Mustard Oil: 1 Tbsp.
- Ghee: ½ Tsp.
- Soak Chickpeas overnight and boil Chickpeas with a little salt and water until 3 whistles. Switch off the flame and wait until the pressure drops. Heat oil in a pan and fry cubed potatoes. Temper the remaining oil with Whole Bay leaf, Whole cinnamon stick, Clove, Green Cardamom, and Black Cardamom and add chopped onion and fry till the onion turn translucent in colour.
- Add tomato puree and ginger-garlic paste and cook till oil leaves the sides.
- Now add Red chilli Powder, Turmeric Powder, salt and Tata Sampann Punjabi Chole Masala and cook for 5 minutes on a low flame.
- Add fried potatoes and boiled Chickpeas and cook for 5 minutes.
- Add 2 cups of the water used for boiling Chickpeas and cook until Chhole get a medium thick consistency.
- Add Garam Masala and Ghee.
- Serve Chole Aloo Masala with steamed rice.
Pasta enjoyed her portion of Chole prepared with the Tata Sampann Masala quite well and I found a genuine feedback in her smile ☺ So that’s a typical flavourful day in my kitchen life.
What’s so special in your day today? Share your comments.
Disclaimer: PR samples received from Tata Sampann.