vegetarian

Pecan Chana Magaj….

Yudhika Sujanani's Chana Magaj...

Yudhika Sujanani’s Chana Magaj…

The food world is changing at an alarming rate…new trends are constantly being introduced and with so much emphasis being placed on ‘painting a picture’ on a plate, we lose the plot. I have a different approach to food and opt to keep it traditional especially with recipes like this Chana Magaj…’Why change it?’ It’s delicious, flop proof and a hit with my friends and family!

I remember paying an absolute bomb for a tray of ‘Chana Magaj’ many moons ago…much to my horror, when I sliced it, it simply crumbled. I was completely dismayed and cross (I will use a more acceptable word). I looked at the crumbled mess and tried to massage it back into a block! I eventually melted a large chunk of butter and mixed it into the chana crumble….it worked like a charm. The moral of the story is don’t scrimp on the butter!!!!

The ‘Devil is in the Detail’…As with most traditional recipes, patience is the secret ingredient. Put on some music and pour yourself a glass of wine while you are stirring the chickpea flour….taking your time makes all the difference. Use a 30cm AMC pot for cooking the chickpea flour…I know I do go on about it but ‘like seriously’…you can’t use a flimsy thin based pot for this! I get my daughters, Hetal and Tanvi, to take turns with cooking the chickpea flour. Every now and then, they bill me for their work and they do a fabulous job!

Chana Magaj keeps for ages in the refrigerator…so keep a few blocks away for ’emergencies’. I confess, I have lots of ’emergencies’ especially when I know these treats are resting in my refrigerator.

Pecan Chana Magaj

Ingredients:

500g chickpea flour
100ml milk, boiled
500g butter ghee
5ml ground cardamom
375g icing Sugar, sifted
100g Klim
100g pecan nuts

Place the chickpea flour and hot milk in a mixing bowl.
Rub the milk into the flour until it resembles breadcrumbs.
Leave the mixture to dry for an hour and then break down the large lumps using your fingertips.
Melt the butter ghee in an AMC pot on a low heat and then add the chickpea flour.
Continue stirring until the chickpea flour turns deep golden brown in colour – about an hour.
Leave aside to cool.
Grease a 25 x 25cm baking tray and line with plastic wrap.
Fold the wrap over the sides of the tray.
Stir in the ground cardamom, sifted icing sugar and full cream milk powder into the cooked mixture.
Work the icing sugar and milk powder into the chickpea flour using your fingertips.
Press the mixture into the baking tray – if the mixture is too dry, add a little melted butter.
Garnish with pecan nuts and leave aside to set.
Slice into blocks and lift the plastic wrap to loosen from the tray.

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Sunday Breakfast Blues…

Sunday blues...Aloo paratha and mint chutney

Sunday blues…Aloo paratha and mint chutney

It’s no secret…I have an ongoing love affair with food. I think about food almost all the time and I even dream about it! I woke up this morning craving one of my veggie favourites…aloo paratha and home-made mint chutney…this is what happens when there is leftover mashed potato from a steak dinner. Ahhh…mashed tatties are the best and only Up To Date Potatoes will do!

The craving was the good part…the downside was that I had to make the parathas…phew…the craving was serious enough for me to haul myself out of bed at an ungodly hour – in my world, any time before 9am on Sunday is still Saturday night.

I have not made these in ages but they are a treat…loved by all in my home and the fresh mint chutney scares off the Sunday blues…or a hangover as it is commonly known. These home-made ‘hotties’ served with a fiery mint chutney really fires up the metabolism.

I last cooked this about six months ago for the Garden and Home shoot with Lyn Woodward and Roelene Prinsloo…one of the fabulously enthusiastic kids did a video clip….click here to watch these being cooked: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tV7IYqcr1OE

I often use my very own Magic Masala in recipes…it’s my favorite spice and a must have…for a list of stockists, click here: https://yudhikayumyum.com/my-spar-stockists/

Here is the recipe…

Aloo Paratha

Ingredients

Dough:

750ml cake flour
5ml fine salt
320ml boiling water
60ml sunflower oil
60ml butter, melted

For the filling:

3 medium UTD potatoes, boiled in the skin
15ml finely crushed fresh ginger
4 green chillies, finely chopped
45ml finely chopped coriander
5ml Curry me Home red chilli powder
15ml Curry me Home Magic Masala
Salt to season

Place the flour and salt in a mixing bowl.
Pour in the boiling water and mix with a wooden spoon.
Pour the sunflower oil in and mix well to combine.
Knead the dough while it is still hot until smooth.
Roll the dough into a ball until the cracks are no longer visible.
Slice the dough into eight pieces and roll into a smooth ball.
Leave the pieces in a mixing bowl and cover with a damp cloth.

While the dough is resting, prepare the filling for the parathas.
Peel the skin off the potatoes and place them in a mixing bowl.
Mash the potatoes while they are still warm and leave to cool.
Pound the ginger and green chilli in a mortar.
Add the pounded mixture to the mashed potato.
Add the chopped coriander, red chilli powder and Magic Masala.
Season with salt.

To assemble the parathas:
Flatten each piece of dough and scoop the filling into the centre.
Gather the edges of the dough to the centre to enclose the filling.
Twist the centre and pinch of the excess dough.
Gently flatten the dough with a rolling-pin on a well floured work surface.
Roll the dough out into 15 – 17cm rounds.
Place the paratha on a heated tawa (indian griddle pan) and cook until freckles appear.
Turn the paratha over and drizzle a little melted butter over.
Turn again and drizzle a little butter over.
Remove from the pan when there are deep golden brown freckles on the parathas.
Serve hot with a dipping sauce of your choice.

Yudhika’s tips:
Smaller parathas are easier to handle especially if you are a beginner.
Adjust the green chilli if you would like a milder paratha.
Parathas can also be served with Mint Raita.