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Munch, munch, munch! There is not end to munching with snacks. Control the hands from reaching for fresh servings.
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Chakli – whole wheat version
Twisting, turning, going round and round with a crunch in each bite – this is our majestic chakli.
Making the chakli is no joke but once you have mastered the art you are not going to stop. The chakli is going to make a permanent place for itself in your snack rack.
When you get a wholewheat chakli the benefits are going to double. No worries of refined flour. On the contrary this chakli has an equal balance of protein too in the form of besan (gram flour).
My mother-in-law got this recipe from some friend long time back and it has stayed with us since then. I won’t say this is a low calorie recipe but it does use a little less oil than the others. But there is no compromise on the crunch.
One cup of wheat flour and one cup of gram flour and in all this we add only two tablespoons of ghee. Apart from this is the unavoidable deep frying oil.
There are two parts to this recipe – first we prepare the flour and then we prepare the dough. The flour can be prepared and stored upto week in advance.
Here goes the recipe
- Whole wheat flour – 1 cup
- Gram flour (Besan) – 1 cup
- Sesame seeds (Til) – 2 tbsp
- Ghee – 2 tbsp
- Red chilli powder – 2 tsp
- Salt – as per taste
- Oil for deep frying
Method – prepare the flour
Sieve the two flours together.
Place the flours in a large soft piece of cloth and tie it up into a bundle. We need to steam this flour.
Place the flour bundle in a steamer and turn on the heat. Mark the time. From start to finish, this flour has to be steamed for 20 minutes.
As soon as the time is up, take out the flour. The flour would be hard and stiff.
Break it up as soon as possible and make a fine flour of it. Sieve it once again to get rid of all the lumps.
Allow the flour to cool. You can store this flour in this state for upto a week.
Method – prepare the chakli
Add the chakli flour to a large mixing bowl. Add all the other ingredients except the oil of deep frying.
Adding a little water at a time, knead the flour into a soft dough.
Place the oil to heat. There should be enough to allow the chakli to float.
Fit the star shaped attachment to your chalk machine. (the one shown in the picture here)
This one will give you a hollow centre. If you do not have this one a simple star shaped one will also do.
Take your chakli machine and fill it with the prepared dough. Fill it upto an inch below the rim.
Now pressing the lever of the machine make spiral shaped chaklis.
When the oil is hot carefully slip the chaklis in. Let the chaklis cook on high flame for some time. When a little done, flip them over and lower the flame. This will ensure proper shaped and well cooked crispy chaklis.
If you add the chakli to cold oil the chaklis will break into pieces.
Prepare all the chaklis in a similar manner until you finish up the prepared dough.
Make sure to cook the chaklis once you have prepared the dough. DO NOT store the dough. Chaklis made out of stored dough do not turn out well.
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Vegetable Patties within Minutes
Easy, quick and delicious . . . Yes these are vegetable patties that were prepared in a hurry.
They serve as a yummy after school snack, meal starters or patties for burgers.
They are quick to make so let us get to the recipe quickly.
With the given ingredients I could make 5 decent sized patties.
- Potato – 1 medium sized
- Carrot – 1 small sized
- Peas – half cup
- Onion – 1 medium size
- Jeera – half tsp
- Haldi – one fourth tsp
- Chilli powder – as per taste
- Salt – as per taste
- Juice of one small lemon
- Garam masala powder – one fourth tsp
- Coriander leaves – 1 tbsp chopped
- Oil – 2 tbsp + 2 for shallow frying
- Rawa (semolina) for coating
Chop the potato, carrots and onion.
Heat oil in a kadai (wok).
Add jeera and turmeric.
When jeera is cackling add the onion. Cook till onion turns translucent.
Add the chopped potato, carrot and the peas.
Add the chilli powder, garam masala powder and salt.
Add a cup of water, stir the vegetables once and cover the kadai.
Allow the vegetables to cook.
When mashed return the kadai to the fire and let the vegetables cook a little more.
Stir frequently to avoid burning.
When the vegetables are mixed and come together in a ball turn off the heat.
Add the lemon juice and the coriander and mix well.
Allow to cool.
Take the rawa in a plate. Make small balls of the mashed vegetables and drop in the rawa. Roll it around to coat completely.
When well coated press between your hands to shape like a patty.
Heat oil in pan and shallow fry the patties in batches.
Serve with sauce, chutney or stuffed between a burger bun with cheese!
Enjoy it as you like it.
Fox Nut, Do We Know You?
How many of us have had this nut? I am sure all of us. However, not all of us know that is called a Fox Nut.
Strange right? Has no resemblance to a fox or a nut and yet it is called the Fox Nut.
We call it Makhana in hindi. Yes, our very own humble makhana. Makhana is a nut and the seed of the lotus.
Mostly found in Asian countries the health benefits of the makhana are many. Sadly it is a much ignored food item that mostly comes out during fasts. It is time we gave the makhana a little more importance and made it part of our daily snack list.
When cooked with butter the fox nut can serve as an excellent snack for children. The crunchy-munchy tasty nuts are far better than the popcorn too.
Health benefits of makhana are many. But what are these benefits? Let us take a look at them.
• Low in sodium and high in magnesium and potassium; this means these nuts are friendly to those suffering from heart diseases, obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure.
• The astringent properties of the lotus seeds are beneficial for kidney health.
• Fiber rich foods are good and going by that principle the makhana is definitely one of the best food ingredients.
• Kaempferol is a natural flavonoid which prevents aging and inflammation and the fox nut is one good source of this flavonoid.
• Our humble makhans is low on glycemic index too and that makes it a dieters’ choice. Grind it and add to the roti flour and give your rotis a nutritious kick.
• Easily digestible 9.7 percent protein in one serving of makhana is yet another point in its favour.
Ways to have Fox Nut
Ways to consume fox nuts
The simplest way to have the makhana is as a snack. Two cups of makhana roasted in two tablespoons of ghee and sprinkled with seasoning. Enjoy a hot cup of tea with this crunchy snack.
For children, replace the popcorn with fox nuts. Children might find this name to be interesting as well. Roast the makhana in butter to bring about the buttery flavour of popcorn.
As a main dish we can prepare makhana sabzi. Team it up with paneer, peas or any other vegetable. Make a rich narvratna sabzi by adding makhana to the recipe.
Fox nut can be served as desert too in the form of makhana kheer. While makhana and rice serve as the main ingredients add other nuts like cashew, blanched almonds, pistachio and raisins to prepare a royal treat.
One simple ingredient found underwater – the fox nut or makhana. From snack to desert we can savour it in multiple ways. Include it in your daily diet to experience the benefits.
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