OMG the Food: Snacks – Hara Bhara Kababs, Mathri, Cheese Fingers, and Aloo Tikki

Good morning everyone,

Today we’re going to make some snacks – Hara Bhara Kababs, Mathri, Cheese Fingers, and Aloo Tikki.  These are great for entertaining or for when you just want a quick meal that can be taken on the road.  The Hara Bhara Kabab and the Aloo Tikki can both be made into veggie burgers too!  Bonus!

Hara Bhara Kababs

These are vibrant green in colour and can be made into small, two-bite patties for a snack or larger into a patty for a veggie burger.  This recipe will make about 12 snack size pieces.  Peas are generally available only in cans in our small northern Canadian town.

Ingredients
2 medium sized potatoes
2 cups loose spinach
1/2 cup peas, drained and rinsed under cold water
2 green chilies, chopped finely
1 thumb ginger, peeled and finely grated
handful of cilantro leaves, chopped
1 tbsp chaat masala (snack seasoning, available in Indian markets)
Salt, to taste
2 tbsp besan (chickpea flour, available in most Canadian supermarkets and in Indian markets)
A little olive oil for frying the patties

Method
In a saucepan of boiling, lightly salted water, blanch the spinach until wilted and remove to a colander.  Rinse under cold water and set aside.  Peel, chop and boil the potatoes until tender.  Rinse under room temperature water and set aside.  Chop the spinach.  In a medium bowl, mash together the potatoes. spinach and peas with the chilies, ginger, cilantro, chaat masala, and salt.  I will sometimes add a little pepper or ground cumin to the basic recipe.  Add in the besan and mix well.  Form into 12 small patties for snacks or into 4 patties for veggie burgers.

In a nonstick frying pan, heat a small amount of olive oil over medium heat.  Without overcrowding the pan, fry the patties on both sides until golden brown and repeat in batches until all the patties are cooked.  Remove to a plate or shallow dish lined with absorbent paper.  Serve hot.

The snacks can be served with a chutney of your choice.  Or make burgers as you like.

Mathri

These little crispy snacks were favourite road food while I was in India recently.  We took them everywhere to snack on between stops at dhabas for meals.  Delicious!  I eat them plain but they can be dipped in any chutney or sauce you want.

Ingredients
2 cups atta flour (available in most Canadian supermarkets and in Indian markets)
2 tbsp fine Cream of Wheat (sooji, available in Indian markets)
3 tbsp ghee
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp ajwain (also known as carom, available in some Canadian supermarkets and in Indian markets)
2 tsp fresh coarsely ground black pepper
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp dried fenugreek leaves
Water, up to 5 tbsp
Oil for deep frying

Method
Combine atta, Cream of Wheat, ghee and salt until blended.  Add ajwain, pepper, cumin and fenugreek and stir until evenly combined.  Add  3 tbsp of water and mix thoroughly with your hands until mixture forms a stiff dough adding up to 2 more tbsp of water slowly.  Shape dough into a ball.  Cover with a dry cloth and set aside at room temperature for 2 hours.

Heat the oil in a pot with high sides or a deep fryer.  The oil should reach 160C.  Knead the dough lightly andd divide it in half.  Roll it out to about 1/4″ thickness and using a cooking cutter, cut discs about 2 inches in diameter.  Prick the surface of the discs with a fork.  Repeat with second half of the dough.  Slip the discs into hot oil, a few at a time, and fry until crispy and golden brown, 3 or 4 minutes.  Remove to a plate or shallow casserole lines with absobent paper towel.  Makes about 40 mathri or so.

Cheese Fingers

Ingredients
250g firm paneer (Recipe here)
1/2 cup besan (chickpea flour, available in most Canadian supermarkets and in Indian markets)
1 tsp ajwain (also known as carom, available in some Canadian supermarkets and in Indian markets)
1 – 2 tsp red hot chili powder
Salt, to taste
Juice from 2 limes
1/2 tsp amchor powder (mango powder, available in some Canadian supermarkets and in Indian markets)
Oil for deep frying

Method
Cut the paneer into 24 or 25 small fingers.  In a shallow dish, mix together besan, ajwain, chili pepper and a little salt.  Put lime juice in another shallow dish.  Heat the oil to 200C in a deep fryer or a pot with tall sides.  Put the paneer, a few pieces at a time in the lime juice and let sit for a minute.  Dip in the flour and deep fry the pieces until just golden (this will go fast so be prepared).  Remove to a plate or baking dish lined with absorbent paper.  Sprinkle the amchor over the cheese fingers and serve.  You can serve these with any chutney that you like.

Aloo Tikki

Ingredients
10 medium potatoes
Salt, to taste
3 tbsp besan (chickpea flour, available in most Canadian supermarkets and in Indian markets)
4 tbsp canola, bran or olive oil, divided
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 cups chopped onion
1 cup peas, drained and rinsed under cold water
1 thumb ginger, peeled and grated
2 green chilies, chopped finely
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp red hot chili powder
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp chaat masala (snack seasoning, available in Indian markets)
2 tbsp cilantro leaves, chopped

Method
Peel, chop and boil the potatoes in a pot of slightly salted water until tender. Drain, mash and set aside. In a heavy pan over medium heat, toast the chickpea flour, stirring continuously, until slightly browned and fragrant, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle the toasted besan over the potatoes. Using the same pan, heat 2 tbsp of the oil over medium heat. Saute cumin for 1 minute. Add onion and saute until the onions are golden, about 6 or 7 minutes. Add peas, ginger, chilies, coriander, chili powder, garam masala and chaat masala. Mix well and saute for another 3 minutes. Let cool. Stir the cilantro into the potato mixture. Divide mixture into 12 portions for snacks and 4 portions for veggie burgers. Flatten each into a patty.

Heat a little more oil in a clean, heavy pan and fry the patties until brown on both sides. Transfer to absorbent paper towels. Serve hot with whatever chutneys you like or as burgers, as you like.

Enjoy!

Until next time,

Peace & love,

Himmatpreet

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