Friday, August 27, 2010

Egg Kheema: An Entry to Cooking with Seeds-Fennel Seeds

My university started back up last week; however, I am leaving in a few days to spend the year abroad in Paris. So, I wanted to prepare a nice dinner for some of my friends before I left. Previously, for my dinner parties, I had prepared mostly Italian/Mediterranean style food, but this time I wanted to come up with something different. So, I thought, what better alternative than a warm, comforting Indian meal? Of course, I just had to concoct something other than the ordinary restaurant fare that most people conceive of when they think of Indian cuisine. Thus arose this aromatic, scrumptious egg kheema. Kheema is traditionally made with minced meat(generally chicken or lamb) in a thick, spicy gravy. I prepared this version with boiled, grated eggs in place of the meat, also flavoring the gravy with fennel and saffon for a unique twist. The tiny amount of saffron adds a touch of sweetness that perfectly rounds out the overall spicy flavor of the dish, but only use a tiny amount as a little goes a very long way. I also used coconut milk to lend some richness to the dish. This gravy can be used as a base for any other type of kheema; I plan to try this with both tofu and paneer. Egg kheema lends itself to being served with paratha, roti, or in my case, Cilantro-Rosemary Naan(mmm...need I say more?), coming in my next post. This dish goes to the event Cooking with Seeds: Fennel Seeds hosted by Priya of Priya's Easy N Tasty Recipes.
Egg Kheema:
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
2 tbsp. oil
4 cloves garlic
1.5" piece ginger
2 green chilli peppers
1 tsp. fennel seeds
1 tsp. cumin seeds
1 bay leaf
2 potatoes, boiled, peeled and mashed
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
2 heaping tsp. coriander powder
1/2 tsp. cayenne powder, or to taste
1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
1.5 tsp. garam masala
1 cup chopped carrots, partially steamed
1 cup frozen peas, defrosted
2 tbsp. lemon juice
a pinch of saffron powder
salt to taste, or about 1.5 tsp
1 cup full-fat coconut milk
10 hard boiled eggs, peeled and grated

Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the bay leaf and cumin seeds, and let the cumin seeds begin to brown. After, add the fennel seeds, and let them just begin to brown until they give off a strong aroma. Add the chopped onion, and cook it over medium heat until transluscent and tender. Make a paste with the garlic, ginger and green chillis, and add the paste to the onion. Cook for 1-2 minutes, or until the garlic is no longer raw, but not brown. Add the tomato sauce, and cook for 2 more minutes. Add the coriander, cayenne and turmeric powders. Add the carrots and peas, cover and cook until the carrots are well-cooked, but still have a slight crunch to them. Then, mash the potatoes and add them to the mixture along with about 3/4 cup water. The potatoes act as a thickener for the gravy. Cook covered until the potatoes absorb the water. Add the coconut milk, garam masala, lemon juice, saffron and salt to taste. Let simmer for about 2 minutes, and then taste and adjust spices/seasonings as needed, especially the lemon juice depending on how sour as opposed to sweet you like it. Add the grated eggs, cover, and let the mixture simmer for about 5-7 minutes. Serve hot with rotis, parathas or naan.
Serves 8


Priya said...

Irresistible egg kheema, thanks for sending Ameya..

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