While we enjoy having our everyday food of Maharashtra, we also are partial to Western or Pan-Asian cuisine on special occasions. But we do want it to be healthy, fresh and easy so that anyone can cook these dishes at home without having to buy expensive ‘videshi’ ingredients.
While planning a party, food and drinks are the most important aspects that need to be executed with precision as we all remember a party for not just the great conversation, music or games we enjoyed but also for the food we had and the drinks that gave us literally a happiness-high.
These days many prefer to order food so that they spend less time in the kitchen and more with friends and family. But these recipes are pretty straightforward and can be made in advance so that you are free and ready to receive your guests.
They require minimum effort and can be made with readily available ingredients. Here, we are also trying to tell you how unique and versatile Aazol's Maharashtrian food products are, and we hope it lights a bulb in your mind too, and you come up with a unique way to use Aazol's products.
Let’s start at the very beginning, with some cocktails and use the famous Food of Maharashtra and unique export to the world – The Kokum Agal.
Cocktails are the life of the party, and a well-made cocktail can make you a master party planner. Gone are the days when we would enjoy a chilled beer or a peg of Scotch at a party. We want something dazzling and outstanding with which to wow our guests and here is one such recipe.
|30 ml White Rum|
|20 ml Lychee Juice (Additional sugar syrup if you like it sweeter)|
|10 ml Aazol Kokum Agal|
|Half a pinch Roasted Cumin Powder|
|5 Lime Juice|
|Sparkling Wine – as required|
Mix all the ingredients except the sparkling wine in a cocktail shaker, shake it well and serve it in a tall wine glass. Top it up with sparkling wine. The wine is added to bring the flavours together.
There you go, we have the perfect aperitif.
Poha Dangar Dip with Charcuterie Board.
Nothing screams continental cuisine like a Charcuterie Board. A well-known board to be enjoyed since the Roman empire and further popularised by French cuisine. On the regular board, we have an assortment of cured meats, cheeses, fruits, breads and fruits. To be enjoyed with a glass of wine. Here we have all the elements and add the secret food of Maharashtra – Poha Dangar, raita mix . Made with poha or flattened rice and a few spices, it adds uniqueness to your board and makes it truly special. Here is the recipe and idea for a Desi Tadka Special Charcuterie Board.
|Poha Dangar Dip||Other items on the board|
|2 tbsp Aazol Poha Dangar||
1 Carrot & 1 Cucumber peeled and cut into neat sticks
|3 cups Curd||
¾ cup Green Olives
|1 Onion, finely chopped||
2 types of crackers
|1 Green chilli, finely chopped||
1 cup Red grapes
|1/4 tsp Mustard seeds||
½ cup Mixed Nuts
|1 dry Red chilli||
Baby Swizz Cheese
|4-5 Curry leafs||
Black Truffle Brie Cheese
|½ tsp Oil||Salt to taste|
In a bowl, take curd, add onions and chillies, with a bit of salt and poha dangar. Mix well and add a simple tadka of curry leaves, oil and mustard seeds.
Now you can set up your board on an actual cutting board or any such large serving dish with the other elements. This board can be enjoyed with oodles of conversation or a cozy tete-a-tete.
Chilli Garlic Chicken Fry with Aazol's Red Chilli Chutney.
Indian Chinese is a cuisine which we have made our very own. We give you a recipe which is the ideal party starter or can be made into a gravy dish to be enjoyed with piping hot fried rice. A small secret - we make the gravy version of this one and order the fried rice from a restaurant – which means less chopping and less time in the kitchen.
We suggest you simplify cooking the Chicken Fry by using Aazol's Red Chilli Chutney, or Thecha which is made in a rustic way, i.e. it is hand pounded with minimal ingredients. Check the recipe for the same.
|400 gm boneless chicken cut into bite size pieces||2 tablespoons water|
|1 tbsp dark soy sauce||
1 tbsp Cornflour
|¼ teaspoon ground black pepper||
3 tbsp Garlic – finely chopped
|3 tbsp Ginger – finely chopped|
¼ cup sesame oil
|1 small bunch Spring Onion – the white part chopped fine and the green part sliced thick|
|½ cup finely chopped spring onion||1 tsp Black Pepper|
|1 tbsp Aazol Red chilli Chutney||Salt|
|1 onion – cubed||1 tbsp Chilli Oil|
|1 medium Capsicum - cubed||
Oil for frying
3-4 pieces of red dry chilli
|2 – 3 tbsp Sesame Oil|
|1 tablespoon white vinegar||3 tbsp Aazol's Red Chilli Chutney|
|4 tbsp Soya Sauce|
Take garlic, ginger, salt, pepper, soya sauce, and chicken pieces in a wide bowl. Mix them well, and then add an egg and cornflour to bind them well. Fry these pieces in hot oil till they are crispy.
Now in a wok, add sesame oil, fry the remaining garlic, ginger, and the white part of the spring onion and saute them well. Add soya sauce, Aazol's red chilli chutney, and white vinegar, and keep stirring while they are all cooked.
Add the chicken pieces, onion and capsicum cut into cubes, and mix well while tossing. Add the green part from spring onions and chilli oil. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and serve hot.
When shared with our near and dear ones, food builds bonds that help us sail through all times, good or tough. We will share more traditional and international recipes in the next part. Our constant endeavour is to innovate and expand both the joy you feel in making and your friends in eating dishes made with Aazol's homemade food products. Filled with love and laughter for all who eat them.
Author: Jinal Aidasani