Paneer/Tofu bhurji

     200 gms paneer/ tofu cumbled up
     100 gms coarsely chopped onions
     2 large tomaotoes skinned and chopped roughly
     2-3 green chillies
     freshly chopped coriander/cilantro leaves 3/4 t sp cumin seeds
     11/2 tb sp cooking oil
     salt and red chilli powder to taste

  • Heat oil in a kadai/ fry pan.
  • Add cumin but do not let it brown.
  • Add chopped onions and fry on high flame till golden brown.
  • Add chopped tomatoes and cookon medium flame till soft.
  • Add salt and chilli powder to taste.
  • Add the crumbled paneer/tofu and mix well.
  • Add green chillies broken into two.
  • Cook for 3-4 minutes and switch off the flame.
  • Do not over cook or the paneer will become hard.
  • Transfer to a dish and garnish with coriander leaves.
  • Serve with hot roties or on toasted bread.
  • Enjoy with lime pickle.


Masi's Pepper Chicken

  2 breasts of chicken
  3 tb sps onion paste
  1 t sp ginger paste
  1 t sp garlic paste
  3 cloves of fresh garlic crushed
  2 t sp crushed black pepper
  salt to taste
  1 tb sp yogurt
  1 1/2 tb sp cooking oil
  coriander leaves for garnish

  • Wash the chicken breast and pat dry with a kitchen towel.
  • Poke the chicken all over with a fork for the marinade to soak in.
  • Marinate the chicken with all the ingredients except oil and coriander leaves and let it soak for as long as possible. You could do it over night and leave it in the fridge.
  • Heat oil in a frypan or kadai till smoking. Lower heat , place the chicken pieces flat in the frypan and cook for a minute or so to seal . Turn and do the same to the other side.
  • Add any extra marinade and cover. Cook on a very low flame, turning the chicken once or twice.
  • Check to see if the chicken is cooked through.Dry out any extra liquid.It should be just coated with the masala.
  • Sprinkle fresh coriander leaves and serve with a salad and mashed potatoes.

Shahi Paneer/Tofu

  200 gms paneer/tofu
  7 cahews
  1/2 cup milk
  jeera/cumin powder
  1/4 t sp haldi / turmeric
  red chilli powder to taste
  salt to taste
  kasturi methi(dry fenugeric leaves)
  1tb sp cooking oil
  1 tb sp ghee/ butter
  1/2 t sp of sugar

  • Soak the cashew nuts in milk till soft. Grind and make a paste and keep aside.
  • Cut the paneer into large triangles.
  • Heat oil in a kadai. Turn the heat off and now add jeera and haldi powder.Quickly add the paneer pieces  and stir so that the masalas do not discolour.
  • Turn on the heat and cook for 1 minute.
  • Add the salt and chilli powder and stir it gently.
  • Add the cashew paste and stir to coat the paneer.Add the sugar and cook to melt it. 
  • Add the kasturi methi and cook for 3 minutes.
  • Serve with hot rotis or pulao.

    Note: Adjust the amount of the cashew paste to your liking.

Chatpatti Gajar( carrot)

  2 long red or orange carrots
  1 t sp. finely chopped ginger
  1 tb sp. finely chopped coriander leaves
  juice of 1/2 alime or lemon
  3/4th t sp. roasted ground jeera(cumin powder)
  chilli flakes to taste
  salt to taste
  cayene pepper to taste
  olive oil

  • Scrape, wash and cut the carrots  into 1/2" thick slices.
  • Put carrots into boiling water for 1 minute and turn off the heat.Let them be in the water for another minute or so. It should be crunchy.
  • Drain and add all the ingredients and a drizzle of olive oil.
  • Mix well and chill in the fridge.
  • Serve as short eats with cocktails or enjoy it as a side dish with an omelette, or grilled fish.
  • Takes not more than ten minutes for the entire process. an excellent healthy snack when you are short of time annd hungry.

Mangalore Prawn/ Fish /veg. curry

  200 gms prawns or your favourite fish cut into cubes
  1/2 cup chopped onions
  2 cloves of garlic
  small piece ginger
  2 medium size tomatoes chopped roughly
  3/4 dhania (coriander powder)
  1/2 t sp jeera (cumin) powder
  chilli powder to taste
  salt to taste
  2-3 green chillies slit and cut into half
  1 tb sp cooking oil
  1/4 piece of fresh coconut or 2 tbsps of coconut powder/dessicated coconut

  • Heat oil in a frypan, add chopped oniond and fry till golden brown .
  • Add chopped ginger, garlic, dhania powder and jeera powder and fry till the raw smell goes.
  • Add chopped tomaoes and salt and cook till soft.Remove from heat, cool and grind to a paste along with the coconut.
  • Put the ground  masala back in the fry pan. add the slit green chillies,and ginger julliens and cook for 5 minutes. Add 1/2 cup water if the masala is too thick and bring to a boil.
  •  Now add the prawns/ fish and cook till  tender. Do not over cook the prawns or they'll turn hard.
  • Serve with boiled rice.
  Vegetarian option
  Replace the fish with mushrooms or fried cubes of brinjal(egg plant) or try any of your favourite vegetable    that you feel  will taste good with this strong  robust masala.I repeat, use your imagination.


A quicker version is to grind the raw ingredients, fry for 5 minutes, add the fish/ prawns and cook till done.
Tamrind pulp can be added before adding the prawns to give it a slightly sour taste.
A really satisfying  quick dish for a cold winter evening .