Sesame Seeds Recipes

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Mirchi Ka Salan Recipe Recipe

Mirchi Ka Salan Recipe

02.26.11 by Jackie

I just learned how to make a variant of mirchi ka salan by Sheerin Auntie, who came to visit us during winter break week. This version is made with only white sesame seeds and originated from the region of Lucknow (Lakhnau) where Abbi, my husband Lulu's late grandfather was born. The previous version was taught by Baji (Lulu's late grandmother); they lived in Hyderabad where mirchi ka salan is made with peanut, fresh coconut and sesame.

The sesame seed variant is quite a bit milder. The sesame seeds are blended into a thick paste (tahini), then added to cumin-flavored oil (baghar). Whole chile peppers are cooked in the sesame mixture until softened. A drizzle of lemon juice finishes the dish. It's as simple as that. Prior to cooking the mirchi ("chiles" in Urdu), I had to be brave and estimate the level of spiciness of the peppers. If the heat is too fiery, you could cut a longitudinal slit and remove the seeds and more of the sesame sauce will enter in the cavity of the chiles for a milder taste.


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Khatta Recipe: Indian Sesame and Tamarind Sauce Recipe

Khatta is an Indian condiment that is generally served as an accompaniment to khichdi (coral lentil basmati rice). Unlike raita (Indian yogurt sauce) or chutneys, khatta has a thin consistency. Toasted sesame seeds are ground into a thick paste (tahini) and mixed with green chiles and tamarind. The sauce is then diluted with water and mixed with thinly sliced onions. The finishing touch is the usual top layer of baghar, which consists of fried garlic, cumin seeds, curry leaves and dried chiles.

The recipe was provided by Lulu's aunt, Sheerin Auntie, who is an amazing, gifted cook. Love is the most important ingredient that is required in any dish, and she has it in boundless quantities. She has agreed to teach me several Indian dishes that I've been wanting to learn, and of course, I'll share them with you once I know them well. Thank you, Sheerin Auntie for teaching me so many valuable lessons, culinary and otherwise.


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How to Make Sesame Chutney (Til Chutney Recipe) Recipe

Sesame chutney (til chutney in Urdu) is one of many Indian chutneys that we make regularly at home. First, sesame seeds are ground into a fine powder. Then, freshly grated coconut, spices and water are added to create a thick paste. The coconut is what gives the sauce a rich mouth-feel. The condiment can be served with rice dishes, idlis or dosas (enormous, thin, crisp, Indian-style crêpes).

Dosas are my husband Lulu’s favorite Indian food, and the reason I haven't posted a dosa recipe yet is that I haven’t been able to successfully make them on my own. Pali appa (Lulu's aunt), who lives in Oakland, comes to visit us from time to time and makes the best dosas from scratch. She taught us how to grind urad dal and rice and let the mixture ferment. On the several occasions when we've made the recipe with her, the dosas were wonderfully delicious. However, on my own, I've failed miserably so far. Will post a detailed recipe once I succeed. Stay tuned!


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Glass Noodles with Vegetable Stir Fry (Jap Chae) Recipe

This glass noodle dish (also known as cellophane noodles, dam myun in Korean and harusame in Japanese) is made from sweet potato starch. The dish is very similar to chow mein, but aesthetically the noodles look translucent once they're boiled and their texture is chewier.

I prepared the noodles with king mushrooms, oyster mushrooms, pan-fried tofu, baby spinach, carrots, sweet potatoes and cauliflower. The dish is relatively easy and quick to make if you have all the veggies prepped in advance.


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