I am a big fan of street food, chaat and tikkis. There was this small chaat shop near vitan in Mylapore and they used to make this awesome pav bhaji and bhel puri. Slowly, the tension of studies, thesis and work took over and I didn’t have time to go out in the evenings and grab some chaat. I got a bag of haldirams or banana chips or lays and munched them.
But when I went home for a vacation after long time(2 years) and after a scorching summer (We hit 110 a couple of days in TX), all tanned and clothes hanging everywhere, I was not able to eat the usual meals properly.
Sis and Brother in Law took me to this place one evening for dinner. If I remember well the place was Mirchi’s. They had this real, fire pit set up under each table and the appetizers were vegetarian kebabs of every kind you can think of. Though I have been to kebab factory and similar places, this concept was unique. Some of the kebabs were well done and they were warming in this BBQ pit on the table and some were cooking and we were able to toss them in to our plates depending on the done-ness we liked. I was so hungry and for a change, some one was cooking for me! I kept feasting on the kebabs (must have gobbled a dozen at least) when BIL looked at me kindly and reminded that there was a full buffet as well
It was embarrassing that I ate till I looked like I am going to burst, but they gave the best gift I ever got in a long time- good food and rest. Even if you are an adult and can run your own show, sometimes you just wish you were a kid, am I correct?
My mouth is watering now to even think of their golden-brown kebabs. This is a recipe from my sister and this book like the previous biryani and this is a healthy version of kebab as we use dried fruits and nuts and vegetables. I guess the restaurant used fresh nuts,figs and dates as that was the harvest season and boy, the fruits just melt and caramelize beautifully.
And this is what I am going to taste with tea during this recipe marathon , come on in with a blanket and make yourself comfortable by the grill!
Ingredients: (makes 6 cylinders)
Boiled Potatoes -3 (Medium size)
Grated Carrot- 1 medium size
Frozen peas -1/4 cup
Salt to taste
Tandoori masala- 3/4 tsp
Cashew nuts and almonds- 4 tsp (together)
Raisins- 3 tsp
Dates- 6 each
Chopped Green chilies-3
Ginger-garlic paste- 1/4 tsp
Butter- 1 tbsp
Chopped Cilantro- 2 tbsp
Sun flower oil- 2 tbsp
Bamboo Skewers -4
Mash the boiled potatoes. Remove the seeds from the dates. Finely chop raisins, dates and nuts. Soak the skewers in water for 10-15 minutes so that the dry sticks won’t catch fire when they are baking/grilling.
Heat one teaspoon oil in a pan and add grated carrots, mashed potatoes and peas. Add salt, stir fry them well, add ginger garlic paste and the tandoori masala powder. (If you do not use tandoori masala powder, use a mix of cumin powder, coriander powder and red chili powder).
Add the chopped green chilies and cilantro.
Do not add water but make sure that the vegetables are stir fried well. At the final stage, add nuts, dates and raisins and mix well. Add the butter and mash it well with the veggies . Let it cool. Divide it in to equal parts.
Take a skewer out of the water. Take one part of the kebab mixture. Dab it with a tea spoon of water so that it will hold it shape and make like a kebab (cylinderical) around the skewer. Arrange all other kebabs in a similar way. Brush with a bit of oil on top of the kebabs.
Baking: I baked these kebabs at 375 oven for 10 minutes each side as N tends to smoke them so much
Grilling : If grilling, wait till both sides are golden brown. Do not keep turning the kebab.
Pan frying: I made some patties as well, with the same veggie-nuts mixture and I shallow fried them in a tea spoon of sun flower oil till each side was golden brown. The raisins and dates may caramelize when you pan fry and the patties may get a brown color but that’s OK.
Serve the kebabs with a slice of lemon and ketchup. Enjoy with a cup of steaming hot chai and a favorite movie.
This is what we have been offering for the past few days during the marathon hosted by Nupur of One hot stove :
Day 1: December 25 : See the recipes here
Day 2: December 26: Check out what’s cooking here
Day 3: December 27: Still going strong, see the delicious recipes here
I am sending this easy vegetable seekh kebabs to for Oraphan’s Easy Veggie 50th Post celebrations.
I am glad that you visited us for tea. Waiting to see you all tomorrow with some “steaming” stuff to feast on.