A wholesome additive-free comfort food that promotes healthy life without causing any food allergies.

Phool Makahana / Lotus Seeds

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LOTUS SEED/PHOOL MAKHANA CURRY

Ingredients 60g lotus seeds/Phool Makhana

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 50g cashew nuts, soaked in 100ml of warm water
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 large tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp ginger and garlic paste
  • 1 tsp Kasmiri chilli powder (less if you prefer it less hot)
  • 1/2nd tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 70g frozen peas
  • 2 tsp dried fenugreek/methi leaves
  • 200ml water

Method

Place the olive oil in a non-stick saucepan and gently fry the lotus seeds, stirring continuously for 5 minutes to allow them to bronze slightly and crisp up. Place in a bowl and leave to one side. In the same non-stick pan gently fry the onion for 5 minutes to allow to soften and become translucent. Add the garlic ginger paste and stir into the onions. After a minute, add the tomatoes and stir into the other ingredients. Now add the Kashmiri chill powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, garam masala and salt. Stir well and leave to simmer for 3 minutes. Transfer the contents of the pan into a blender and then return to the blender once you have a smooth sauce. Continue to simmer for a couple of minutes. Place the cashew nuts, and the water they are soaking in, into a blender to form a paste. I find that my spice grinder works well at blending the nuts smoothly (do not add the water to the spice grinder!) and then stir into the water after they have been ground up. Add to the main pan and simmer for a minute. Add the dried fenugreek/methi leaves and the peas and stir into the smooth sauce along with 200ml of water and simmer. After 5 minutes add the lotus seeds and stir thoroughly into the sauce. Simmer for a further couple of minutes then serve. Serve with some chopped fresh coriander and a wedge of lemon.

PHOOL MAKHANE KI KHEER

Ingredients (measuring cup used, 1 cup = 250 ml)

  • 500 ml organic milk
  • 1 cup Makhana/fox nuts
  • 2-3 green cardamom, husked and powdered in a mortar-pestle
  • 10-12 almonds, blanched & sliced
  • 10-12 cashews, sliced
  • 3 to 3.5 tbsp sugar or as required
  • a pinch of saffron

INSTRUCTIONS

Heat the milk, when the milk comes to a boil, add Phool Makhana and simmer the milk with occasional stirring on a low to medium flame. After 5 mins. Add the sugar, cardamom and pinch of saffron. When the kheer is simmering, blanch the almonds. To do this, microwave or boil 1 cup water. Add the almonds to the hot water and keep aside for 8-10 minutes. Drain and peel them. Slice the almonds and chop the cashews. The kheer would have thickened very little by now. Simmer the milk for a total time of 12-15 minutes on a low to medium flame with occasional stirring. if you want you can simmer for some more minutes to get a slightly thick consistency. However keep on stirring often. Lastly add almonds and cashews. Switch off the fire and serve the makhane ki kheer hot, warm or cold.

ROASTED MAKHANA

Ingredients (measuring cup used, 1 cup = 250 ml)

  • 3 cups Makhana/Phool Makhana/fox nuts/lotus seeds
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder/haldi
  • ½ tsp red chili powder/lal mirch powder or as required
  • 1 tsp chaat masala or as required
  • Rock salt as required
  • 2 to 3 tsp oil or ghee

Method

Heat oil in a pan or kadai. Add the Makhana and roast for a good 10-12 minutes on a low flame till they become crisp and crunchy. Keep on stirring in between. Lastly add all the spice powders and salt, except chaat masala. Switch off the fire as you don't want the spice powders to get burnt. Stir the whole mixture well. Lastly sprinkle the chaat masala powder and again mix well. Serve roastd makahana straightaway or else they cool down become limp. Store roastd Makahana in air-tight container.

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