Archive for June, 2015

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Mridula Baljekar will be joining Chaat! at the JustVShow at London Olympia 4 July 11 am, come along and watch the demonstration!

Follow the link to get your free entrance ticket!

Here is one of Mridula’s Recipes to give you a taste of her demonstration

Plantain Curry6190DF095-M

Plantains are used in this delightful recipe from Tamil Nadu, Vazhakkai Kari, and these are often sold by Asian grocers and larger supermarkets. Unripe bananas with a dark green skin also work well, although the flavour is different. Cook them on the day of purchase so that they do not get a chance to ripen. The food of this region is generally blisteringly hot, but the quantity of chilli can be adjusted to taste

Serves 4

4 plantains

15ml/1 tbsp full-fat (whole) natural

(plain) yogurtlogo

400ml/14fl oz/12⁄3 cups canned coconut milk

7.5ml/11⁄2 tsp chilli powder

2.5ml/1⁄2 tsp ground turmeric

5ml/1 tsp salt, or to taste

45ml/3 tbsp sunflower oil or light olive oil

2.5ml/1⁄2 tsp black or brown mustard seeds


.5ml/1⁄2 tsp cumin seeds

6–8 curry leaves

2 red onions, finely sliced

1–2 fresh green chillies, chopped (deseeded if preferred)

Plain Boiled Rice, to serve


1 Peel the plantains and halve them lengthways. Cut each into 2.5cm/1in chunks.


2 Rub the plantain with the yogurt, then soak in a bowl of cold water for 15–20 minutes. This removes any stickiness.


3 Drain the plantain chunks and rinse. Put them in a medium pan and add the coconut milk, chilli powder, turmeric and salt.


4 Add 200ml/7fl oz/scant 1 cup water to the pan and place over a low heat. Cover and simmer for 20–25 minutes or until the plantain is tender, but still firm.


5 Meanwhile, heat the oil in a small pan over a medium heat and add the mustard seeds.


6 As soon as the mustard seeds begin to pop, add the cumin and the curry leaves.


7 Add the onion and chillies and fry for

8–10 minutes, stirring regularly, until the onion begins to colour. Reduce the heat slightly halfway through the cooking time.


8 Pour the onion and spices over the curry, stir and simmer for 4–5 minutes. Serve with Plain Boiled Rice.


cook’s tip

Freshly made coconut-based curries thicken considerably upon cooling, so do not worry if the curry looks a little watery when you have finished cooking. Either leave it to cool slightly before serving, or cook the sauce for a little longer to reduce it to the desired consistency.

Vegetarian Indian Food & Cooking by Mridula Baljekar


Mridula in black chef coat 2 logo


Serves 4SGV Venison

Venison suits the strong flavours in this Thai curry. Some commercial Thai curry pastes are very hot so watch out.

3 tablespoons sunflower oil

1 onion, finely chopped

1 red pepper, halved, seeded and sliced

1 yellow pepper, halved seeded and sliced

4-6 tablespoons bought Thai green curry paste

2 x 400ml cans coconut milk

400 ml vegetable stock or water

3 kaffir lime leaves (or grated rind of 1 lime)

175 g (6 oz) small broccoli florets

75 g (3 oz) mange tout

2 courgettes, sliced

2 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander

salt and freshly ground black pepper

350g (12 oz) venison fillet, thinly sliced


Heat the oil in a large sauté pan until smoking and add the sliced onion and red pepper. Cook over a high heat until the onions are just beginning to catch and go brown around the edges. Stir in the curry paste, cook for 1 minute, then pour in the coconut milk, stock and lime leaves or rind. Bring to the boil then turn down the heat and simmer gently for 10 minutes. Add the broccoli and simmer for 5 minutes, then add the mange tout and courgettes and simmer for a further 5 minutes or until the vegetables are tender and the sauce very slightly thickened. Drop the sliced venison into the curry and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Serve the curry in warmed deep soup bowls with boiled Thai Jasmine ice.

“Venison” by Maxine Clark, published by / copyright Highland Game,

For venison supplies go to Seriously Good Venison


Perfect summer BBQ delight!

This seems complicated, but is actually quite easy to do and although using banana leaf will give the fish more flavour you can also use aluminum foil and still have a delicious, healthy dish. You can choose whichever fish you like, in Kerala they use Pomfret, here I have used Tilapia but use whichever fish is in season and which will work in this dish (your fishmonger will be able to help here). This is not a heavy dish but is really satisfying and just needs a little salad or some potatoes on the side to become a filling, healthy meal. If it is summer, try doing these on the barbeque, the extra smokiness is delicious.

More recipes like this get your copy of Chaat! now 

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4 tbs. coconut or vegetable oil

4 fillets tilapia or other fillets

14 curry leaves

1 medium onion, finely chopped

6 cloves garlic, finely chopped

6g ginger, finely chopped

½ green chilli, finely chopped, or to taste

2 small tomatoes, chopped

Salt to taste and 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

A pinch of powdered fennel seeds

A small pinch of powdered cloves

1/3 tsp. tamarind paste to taste

2 tsp. lemon juice and ½ tsp. turmeric powder to marinate fish


4 squares of banana leaves, large enough to wrap the fish in, or aluminum foil

String to tie or toothpicks to secure banana leaves


Makes 4


Marinate the fish in the lemon juice with good pinches of salt and turmeric per fillet. Leave aside for 20 minutes.

Heat half the oil in a large frying pan. Add the fish and fry on one side for 20-30 seconds then turn and do the same with this side. Place straight onto the banana leaves or foil packets.

Add the remaining oil to the pan and add the curry leaves, fry for 5 seconds and add the onions, cook well until soft and lightly golden. Add the ginger, garlic and chilli and stir fry for a minute. Add the fennel, clove, black pepper and salt along with the tomatoes and a splash of water. Cook for 5-6 minutes or until the whole thing comes together. Taste, it should taste cooked and harmonious.

Stir the tamarind paste. At this stage it should be a little salty and a little a bit spicy.

Heat the banana leaves over fire to make them pliable and smear the inside of the leaves with some oil. Spoon a little of the masala in the centre of each leaf. Place a piece of fish on top and smear over the rest. If using foil, the masala often sticks to it and you lose a bit so smear a good amount of the mix on top of one side only. Fold over the foil or banana leaf to enclose the fish (and possible juices) properly and secure using some string or toothpicks to help.

Heat the rest of the oil in a thick-bottomed pan or oil a BBQ rack or griddle pan. Add the parcels and cook, covered, for around 3-4 minutes on each side or until the banana leaf turns a pale brown. If using foil, you can also cook it in a preheated oven (200C) and bake for 10 minutes.

Serve hot with lemon wedges and a salad or some potatoes on the side.

Recipe provided by Anjum Anand


#SUMMER #Hamper includes @KingfisherBeer @Velvet_Lake @AldiUK @Bloomspopcorn @Liberation_Nuts @AmiraFoodsUK #TasteOfIndiaFoods @Teatulia

EMAIL: Send your details to competition with “SUMMER HAMPER” in the subject line
FACEBOOK:POST “SUMMER HAMPER” ON OUR WALL, ‘Like’ our page and share our competition post
TWITTER: Re-tweet our competition post and follow us


Kingfisher is India’s No.1, the first choice of the nation from Delhi to Doddanapudi, and the leading Indian beer the world over. Brewed to an authentic and most venerable recipe for more than 150 years, it is the perfect partnership for the heat and spice of even the richest of curries. Practice surely does make perfect.

VELVET LAKE WINE  A trio of red, white and rose wine, from South Eastern Australia. The wines are sweet but well-balanced and have been placed in convenience retailers nationwide with an extremely affordable price point of £5.49 each. Now available in stores across the UK :

Taste of India Butter Chicken Curry sauce is a winner! Having won several international food awards including the prestigious ‘iTQi Taste Awards’. Gluten Free product with no artificial colours or flavours and comes with extra seasoning spices and simple recipe step by step guide. Now available in 375g and 2kg Foodservice pouches from Bestway & Batleys Cash & Carry depots and selected Best One Retail outlets. For more information please visit

Aldi Chocolate : Chocolate and cherries are one of the finest flavour combinations for a gourmet palate. Aldi’s Moser Roth Sour-Cherry Chilli Chocolate Mousse Bars combine the two, making the perfect treat for the modern chocolate connoisseur.  These slim bars of 85% dark chocolate have a lightly whipped mousse centre, giving that melt in the mouth sensation with the added thrill of a hint of chilli. Combined with a touch of sour-cherry, this chocolate bar is one not to be missed. You can pick up a bar for just £.179 in Aldi stores nationwide

BLOOMS POPCORN: Jumbo sized popcorn is hand popped in the traditiional way, in small batches to give crunch and character! Lots of great flavours Seasame & Sea Salt, Roasted Peanut, Caramel and Smoked Mexican Chili.

Santa Maria Natural Umami Seasoning 45G

Superior Aromatic – Amira Rice: A luxuriously extra-long rice grain that looks so beautiful you’ll be proud to serve it. Pure white perfection, extraordinarily elegant to the eye, our rice grains don’t stick – giving you a professional dish in under 15 minutes. With grains significantly longer than Basmati and aged for 12 months, Amira Superior Aromatic is delicately fluffy and fragrant, with the right balance of natural bite and sweet softness in the mouth

Liberation Nuts Liberation Foods is the UK’s only Fair Trade, farmer-owned nut company. Our vision is a world in which small-holder nut producers earn a decent, secure income and can plan for the future of their families and communities. We buy our nuts from the co-operatives of small-scale growers and farmers who own a 44 percent share of our company.

Organic Tea by Teatulia: For many tea lovers, choosing the right tea helps maintain a healthy lifestyle and a healthy environment. And for Teatulia, that means providing a range of organic tea to satisfy the palates of tea fans everywhere – it also means that our organic black tea and green tea is grown and cultivated in a way that respects the land on which it’s grown, the community of workers who produce it and the people who drink it.


The British summertime may be dreary, but things are heating up in Essex this June!

In the rural parts of Maldon Essex, The Great Wild Food and Chilli Fair will now be providing the opportunity for people of all ages and backgrounds to come together and appreciate the food of the forest, with a little fire to heat things up. This family friendly weekend event aims to celebrate the varied and plentiful produce of nature’s larder with all food and drink harvested locally.

Walk on the hot side colour

Here at Chaat! Magazine we’re all about the spice, and this show gives the opportunity to try chilli from all over the globe. In attendance will be some of the UK’s top sauce producers and chilli aficionados such as Hot Headz, Chilli Alchemist, Fiery Foods, O.Chilli.D, Grim Reaper foods, Twisted 7, Norfolk Chilli Farm, and the internationally recognised Clifton Chilli Club. It’s not just spicy sauces, once your tongue gets to numb to taste anymore, go check out some of the many delights the festivals three arenas have to offer.

Although consuming as much food as possible might be the goal of the weekend, entertainment is available for when you’re absolutely full of foraged delicacies. On the Saturday they have the Essex Regional Chilli Cook Off (where the winner will receive a place in the UK finals and a cash prize!), a Wild Arena Bushcraft Gathering, where you can learn the survival skills needed to become the next Bear Grylls. There’s no need to worry about the children while all this is going on, they’ll be busy having a great in the Kids Go Wild Zone. This is only a fraction of what this action packed Fair has to offer.

The fairs many attractions include a group of professional foragers and chefs who will offer eager guests a chance to learn exciting new cooking skills, ensuring that you can bring the fun of the fair back to your kitchen. The chefs also use locally grown produce, so attendees can discover how to live from the land, embracing nature whilst creating delicious meals! What could be better?

The large variety of activities and workshops ranges from First Aid and survival class, to cooking lessons, encompassing the ideas of the fair. Many of these classes require advance booking and they have limited spacing, so be quick to get your tickets online, or else you could miss out on all the food, fun and new knowledge.

Go to to find out more and book your tickets for the 27th -28th of June. Why not add a little spice to your life, and learn to be one with nature again?



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