Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Easy Chatti Pathiri

This is an item I learnt from a friend of mine who also was my junior in college. She is a great cook, hailing from Kozhikode. I love the food cooked in the calicut region of malabar . Women from this region are so good at cooking that the way they cook makes us feel that cooking is a very simple task. They can put up a feast in no time. Food is the main character at any special occation. These ladies have so many innovative recipes that you cannot imagine the pains they have gone through to achieve the end result.

This dish I am making today is a Kozhikode special-Chatti Pathiri. It is traditionally a layered dish. Thin chapathi's are rolled out and half cooked in a griddle. Then filling is made out of eggs, sugar, dried grapes, cashews, cardamom and cuscous. The chapathis are dipped is beaten eggs then laid out in a pan and altenated with the filling and cooked on a low fire. I am not a big fan of it, because of the large amount of eggs involved in its preparation and rolling out chapathis are not one of my strong points(I CANNOT MAKE A PERFECT ROUND TILL NOW!!). For a good chatti pathiri recipe you can go to shaheen's blog Malabar Spices , great recipes and you won't go wrong. But the same version is made with a meat filling. That is the one I love to make. But again, the chapathi rolling is a difficult procedure in this (for me). My friend saved me from this by telling me how to make chatti pathiri easily by using bread instead of the chapathis.

Today I am making it for iftar so I am posting my recipe for this particular chatti pahtiri.

Ingredients for the filling.

Chiken – 3or 4 pieces
Chilly powder – ½ tsp
Turmeric powder- a pinch
Fennel seed powder- ¼ tsp powder
Salt- 1 tsp
Onion -1
Ginger- ½ “ piece
Garlic – 3 cloves
Oil – 1 tbsp
Garam masala- ½ tsp
Bread for the layers should be dipped in a mixture of egg (slightly beaten with milk), a bit of salt, pepper and chilly powder.

Method for the filling

Marinate the chicken with chilly powder, turmeric powder, fennel seed powder and salt. Cook the marinated chicken covered with a couple of tablespoons of water. Let the chicken cook until all the water has evaporated. Now shread the chicken pieces. In a pan heat oil, saute the onions, ginger, garlic and green chillies until it is brown colour. Add few drops of water to this and add a pinch of chilly powder and put the shreded chicken to it.If all the chicken is not coated with the masala add a few more drops of water to it. Add the garam masala to this mixture and stir for a minute or so and switch the heat off and wait till it cools down.

For Layering

Oil the pan in which you decide to cook the chatti pathiri. (Iuse a small non-stick saucepan that I have, but our kunjumol chechi, in india uses a regular non-stick frying pan for this.)

Cut the edges of the bread. Dip the bread in the egg mixture.

Arrange the bread at the bottom of the pan so that the entire base is lined with the bread.Cut up the bread to sizes that fill the cracks in between.

Put the chicken masala on top of this in a fairly even layer.

Repeat the earlier bread layer and continue until you get the desired number of layers, finishing with the bread layer.

Put some ghee around the edges.

Cook this pan on a burner with the lowest sim.

Let it cook for about 5- 10 min. After this it is time to turn it over.

This is a tricky part. So it is better to use a pan with a long handle.Use a spatula around the edges to get the chatti pathiri to leave the edges. Put a lid or a wodden cutting board on top of the pan and just flip it (If using a good non-stick ware this should turn without a problem.)

Now put the pathiri back in the pan with the top side of it inside the pan.

Cook it for another 5 min and switch the heat off.

Once it cools down take it out and serve.

* Wanted to give a foto explanation of the process but could not get around to take the pics.

This is our entry for the ongoing event hosted by Kitchen Flavours Joy From Fasting To Feasting (Season-II)

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Meat Cutlet

Ramadan is a Holy month of the Islamic calendar. During the month of Ramadan, Allah showers on us rewards for each and every good deed that we do. Ramadan also shows the importance of food, teaches us what hunger is.

Iftar, is the time when we can have food after a whole day's fast. In our household,Ramadan used to be the time when all the oily and delicious snacks were prepared . We never make samosas, cutlets, puffs and all those things on normal days. Weight was the major issue. But during Ramadan all of these things were prepared and we ate to our hearts contend. We had Saina Itha those days who used to make these snacks abundantly and we used to wait for iftar just so we could eat these things. Me and my sisters used to love Ramdan when we were kids. One of my sisters used to bid farewell to cutlets and samosas on the last day of ramdan, she would say,"bye, bye will see you next year".

So in this month of Ramadan I will be posting all the iftar treats that I make in my kitchen. Today the first day of Ramadan and my menu for iftar is Cutlet, Shawarma, Fruits and Thari Kanji. We will have Pathiri and Mutton curry for dinner. I guess this makes for the whole day that we go without food or water (I guess more than makes up).

This is the recipe I used for the meat cutlet today. It changes everytime I make. Today it turned out really well so thought let it be my first post for iftar recipes.


Beef (cooked with salt and turmeric and shredded) – 2 cups
onion- 1 large
ginger – 1” piece
garlic – 5-6 cloves
green chillies - 3
fennel seeds - ½ tsp
turmeric powder – ½ tsp
chilly powder - ½ tsp
coriander powder - ½ tsp
garam masala - ½ tsp
coriander leaves- ½ bunch
pepper powder– 1 tsp
Potatoes (boiled and mashed)-3

  1. Cook the meat with salt and turmeric in a pressure cooker.
  2. While is meat is cooking, cook the potatoes. Microwave the potatoes in a microwave safe bowl covered with a cling wrap. If you have root vegetables menu on the microwave put it in that setting or else just microwave it on high for 5 min. Check for readiness by inserting a fork.
  3. Once it is cooked mince it and keep aside.
  4. Slice the onion finely. Crush ginger, garlic, fennel seeds and the green chillies. (I just put all of them together in a chopper and give it a whirr..)
  5. Saute all this with a pinch of salt till everything comes together and looks a little brownish.Add turmeric and saute a for a few seconds more.
  6. At this point, add a little stock of the meat you just cooked.
  7. Add red chilly powder and coriander powder and saute for a few min.
  8. Now add the meat and let it cook in the masala for around 3-4 min.
  9. Peel the potatoes and crush it into the meat masala.
  10. Once the whole mixture cools down knead the masala until it holds shape.
  11. Make it into balls and flatten it out to circles. To make all the cutlets in same shape you can use, cookie cutters. Or if you are really talented you can get it into same sizes without the cutters (but i am not that talented or professional, so my cutlets vary in shape.).
  12. Now take an egg beat it lightly and dip the cutlets in it.
  13. In another bowl take some breadcrumbs. Dip the cutlets that have been egg dipped into this to make a coating.
  14. Deep fry in hot oil
  15. Serve with ketchup.

* If the meat mixture is a bit watery even after adding potatoes, add in some breadcrumbs that will take away the moisture.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Ramdan Kareem.

May Allah Bring in joy and prosperity to all.