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Top Indian foods for Superbowl

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Today is Superbowl. It is the time when many people are busy tailgating and eating chips, salsa, hot dogs etc. There are many items in Indian cuisine which are good for a Super bowl party. Here are some items that would make any Superbowl party a sure hit.

1. Bread Pakoras: Bread pakoras are made using bread filled with paneer (cottage cheese) along with some spicy chutney. They can be eaten as snacks or can also be used for a filling school lunch. Store bought paneer is available in many brands like Nanak, Shamiana, Gopi etc and available in Indian groceries in the valley.

2. Mini samosas: Mini samosas that can be made using any kind of filling and are a sure hit in any Super bowl party. Samosas are fried pastry with a savory filling like potatoes, chick peas etc http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samosa. They can be made in advance and deep fried just before the party for a tasty last minute snack. The crust can be made from scratch (like a pie crust) but a quicker alternative is to use uncooked tortillas. So happy munching during the game.

3. Puri Chana: Looking for inspiration for new recipes to serve during Super Bowl that would be fiery, spicy and hot? How about a common Indian snack called puri-chana? It is basically fried bread along with a spicy, hot chickpea curry. With some twists and tweaks, this time-tested recipe could easily be modified as a Super Bowl appetizer that would serve many people. In order to same time (and also calories) I thought of an easy way to make this. So instead of kneading dough to make puris, I substituted them with uncooked tortilla quarters baked to resemble mini wedge shaped puris (similar to nachos). Also, I figured out a simpler method to make the chickpeas. Topped with some salad, these mini nacho/puris with chana are good for any tailgating party.

4. Vegetable balls: A meatless meatball made from cottage cheese is a nice substitute that can satisfy all kinds of palettes. It is spicy, chili and tangy, so one can enjoy all three tastes without compromising on flavor.

5. Mozzarella bread rolls: Bread rolls are easy to make appetizers, made of bread slices filled with any kind of stuffing and rolled and deep fried. They are different from dinner rolls as they are stuffed and deep fried. For a little more on bread rolls check the article http://www.aayisrecipes.com/2005/09/12/bread-roll/

Bread Pakora
Bread Pakora S Biswas

Bread Pakora

Bread Pakoras

  • 4 slices of bread (white or wheat)
  • 4 slices of paneer (2” slices, store bought or fresh)
  • 2 tsp cilantro-mint chutney
  • 4 tbsp gram flour (besan)
  • 1 tsp rock salt (or table salt)
  • ½ tsp red chili powder
  • 1 pinch baking soda
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tbsp canola oil

Put 1 slice of paneer over a slice of bread. Smear 1 tsp cilantro-mint chutney over the paneer. Cover with the other bread slice to make a sandwich. Cut the sandwich diagonally. Repeat with the other two bread slices to get four half sandwiches. Add salt, chili powder and soda to the gram flour. Add water slowly to make a thick batter. Heat oil in a deep frying pan. When the oil is smoking hot, dunk one half sandwich in the batter and put in the hot oil. Turn over with a slotted spoon when one side is cooked (1 min). Remove and keep on paper towels to drain excess oil. Dip remaining sandwiches in the batter and fry in the oil. The bread pakoras are ready. Serve hot with some ketchup and a hot cup of tea or coffee.

Mini samosas
Mini samosas S Biswas

Mini samosas

Mini Samosas

The filling

  • 1 cup potatoes (diced)
  • 1 cup cauliflower flowerets
  • ½ cup peas
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • ¼ tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp raisins
  • 1 tbsp peanuts (can be avoided if allergic to nuts)
  • 1 tbsp canola oil

Heat oil in a skillet. Add the vegetables and sauté over medium heat. Add salt, turmeric, chili and cumin powders and continue sautéing. When vegetables are a little tender add raisins and nuts and the sugar. Keep aside to cool.

The crust

  • 4 uncooked tortilla rounds (cut into quarters)
  • ¼ cup flour (mixed with 1 tsp water to form a paste)
  • 1 cup canola oil

Take a quarter of a tortilla and form a cone by sealing the edges with the flour paste (check the slideshow for photo). Fill the empty cone with 1 tsp of the filling mixture. If you are short of time you can use cooked rotisserie chicken or garbanzo beans or mashed potatoes as filling as well. Seal the top edge of the cone with more flour to make a triangular pastry (see slideshow). Make cones with remaining tortilla quarters and keep the filled pastries aside.

Heat canola oil in a deep wok or a fryer. Fry the samosas in the oil over medium heat till golden on both sides (1 minute each side). Drain over paper towels to drain excess oil. Serve hot with ketchup and mint chutney.

Vegetable balls
Vegetable balls S Biswas

Vegetable balls

Vegetable balls

  • 1 lb raw paneer (made from ½ gal whole milk)
  • 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp ground rosemary
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 sprig of cilantro (chopped finely)
  • 2 green chilies (chopped)
  • 3 tbsp canola oil

Method

Knead the paneer with 1 tbsp all purpose flour and the rest of the ingredients in a food processor or by hand. Form into 1” balls. In a wok heat oil till it is hot. Roll the paneer balls in the leftover flour and fry in batches till golden brown. Be sure to turn the balls in the oil with a slotted spoon so that they brown uniformly from all sides. Drain the excess oil on paper towels. Serve in a platter with toothpicks inserted in the balls along with mint (pudina) chutney as a condiment.

Mozzarella Bread rolls
Mozzarella Bread rolls S Biswas

Mozzarella Bread rolls

Mozzarella bread rolls

  • 4 pcs bread slices (refrigerated and slightly stale bread, 1-2 days old)
  • 1 flat plate with water
  • Some potato filling (mashed or baked potatoes)
  • 1 tsp chaat masala
  • 2 mozzarella cheese sticks
  • 1 sprig of cilantro (chopped)
  • 1 tbsp oil

Mash the potatoes with a pinch of salt (if unsalted). Add the cilantro, chaat masala and keep aside. Dip a slice of bread in the water and squeeze out the excess water by pressing the bread slice between your two palms (the bread should flatten after this). Now put 1 tsp potato filling in the center of the bread. Slice the mozzarella cheese stick in half and place one half of the cheese on the potato filling. Using your palms, close the two ends of the bread over the filling in the center. Make sure the bread seals at all corners. Repeat the procedure to make four more bread rolls.  Heat oil in a deep wok. Fry the bread rolls in the oil till golden brown. Drain on paper towels and serve hot with ketchup.

Puri chips and chana
Puri chips and chana S Biswas

Puri chips and chana

Mini Puris

1 pack uncooked tortillas (Tortilla land uncooked tortillas from Costco)
Pam cooking spray

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Cut each tortilla into four quarters. Line a baking tray with foil and arrange the tortilla wedges on it. Spray each wedge with Pam spray and bake till slight brown freckles appear on the tortilla (5-6 mins). Turn the wedges over and bake for another 2 minutes. You will have to do this in batches so that you have a lot of tortilla wedges. Keep the cooked wedges in an airtight container to keep them warm.   

Spicy Chana

10 cans of garbanzo beans
2 onions (chopped)
2 tsp ginger paste
2 tsp garlic paste
2 cans of chopped tomatoes
2 tsp red chili powder
2 tsp chat masala
1 tsp garam masala powder
2 tbsp canola oil

In a wok heat oil till hot. Fry the onions till translucent. Add the ginger, garlic paste and fry for another minute. Add the cans of tomatoes. Keep stirring till the tomatoes are well cooked. Add the chat masala, chili and garam masala powders. Now add the garbanzo beans, two cans at a time and keep mixing with the spice mixture. Cover and cook on low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Keep warm before serving.

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