Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Diwali Mini Vegetarian Thali ~ Wish You All A Dazzling And Prosperous Diwali

Dear Readers How are you all celebrating Diwali this year? For me Diwali starts and ends with food. I will be preparing a vegetarian Lunch Thali. Also there will be sweets galore and a very special sweet called Zauq E Shahi which means Royal taste and is mini Gulab Jamuns served in Rabri. In the evening when a thousand Diyas (Earthen lamp with a wick dipped in oil) will illuminate my home I will join my hands in prayer and just like every Diwali, this Diwali too, I will pray for Light over Darkness, Hope over Despair, Good over Evil and Love over Hatred. Along with all this I shall repeat something in my mind which I had promised myself to do many years ago. I will once again uphold my promise of embracing every aspect of the Globe while being rooted to my Rich Indian Culture and tradition. That's what my food too shall always reflect. Global with an Indian Soul.


Any festive occasion is not complete without an elaborate meal. In most Indian homes the idea of serving every element on a single platter or thali is still preferred over a buffet meal. People still like to sit together, chat away over a meal and like to be served rather than getting up and helping themselves. But this practice is slowly changing and in Cities Buffets are definitely taking over. However in my home, the Thali still rules supreme. So this Diwali even though I was racing against time, I decided to make a mini thali for the lunch get together at my home.  It's always fun when friends come over on these festive occasions, dressed in their finery, wish each other and then over a meal their is happy chatter, all stress and mundane chronicles of life left away for those festive days. 

Diwali Mini Vegetarian Thali ~ Wish You All A Dazzling And Prosperous Diwali

The Elements of the Diwali Mini Vegetarian Thali are ~

  1. Chutney Wala Dhingri Kabab Recipe / Green Chutney Coated Mushroom Kebab 
  1. Salad
  2. Poppadum
  3. Mint And Coriander Chutney
Chutney Wala Dhingri Kabab Recipe / Green Chutney Coated Mushroom Kebab ~

Flower. Then the vegetables are skewed onto individual skewers and grilled on a hot grill basting them with oil from time to time, till done. Keep your skewers ready with the chutney coated mushrooms. As the guests starThis is a very simple starter. The mushrooms, cherry tomatoes and green and yellow peppers are coated with a paste of mint and coriander chutney , mixed with yogurt, garlic paste and a tbsp of Gram t arriving, start grilling them. Should not take more than 10 minutes. Serve on the skewers. It is a guarantee that your guests will love them. So do keep a few extra skewers ready, because I speak from experience, there is bound to be repeat requests for Chutney Wala Dhingri Kabab.

Spicy Mexican Green Rice Recipe / Arroz Verde 

Try the Spicy Mexican Green Rice / Arroz Verde. This is made using a bunch of varied greens. The flavours are true blue Mexican, fiery, deliciously inviting and will be loved by one and all. This very healthy rice dish can be made children friendly .by reducing the quantity of peppers used.

Another wonderful way to pep up your Rice dish and make it fully loaded with flavour and taste. Arroz Verde beautifully compliments all Indian Curries. For Recipe, click the Heading just above.

The Beetroot Paneer Curry uses Beetroot as a main component in the gravy of the dish. Throw in pieces of lightly grilled Paneer / Cottage Cheese and believe me, apart from the gorgeous colour and the inherent benifits that it has imparted to the dish, there will be no other traces of beetroot. You must try My Beetroot Paneer Curry to believe how moreish this curry is. For my Vegan Friends substitute Cottage  Cheese with Tofu or Garbanzo beans and the dish tastes as amazing. 

The deliciousness lies in the testimony that when I was planning this years Diwali Lunch Menu, Beetroot Paneer Curry had the unanimous vote from all. As you can see from the pictures here that visually it will leave your guests a happy bunch, trust me this curry has the power to make their taste buds jump with joy. A very simple dish, the Beetroot Paneer Curry takes less than 30 minutes to be rusted up and served. What's more you can prepare the Beetroot gravy in advance and grill the paneer only before serving. This is totally my recipe with inputs from family and friends. For Recipe, click the heading just above.

Chettinad Cauliflower Chukka Recipe / Spicy Dry Cauliflower Curry From Chettinad

For my family it is inevitable to gorge on either Chicken Chettinad (get the recipe by clicking on Chicken Chettinad. It is the most viewed post on my Blog) or Chettinad Chicken Chukka when we eat at a restaurant serving Chettinad Cuisine. After I had managed to get hold of the Recipe of Chettinad Chicken Chukka, I started cooking the dish at home. When at lunch or dinner get togethers, the fragrant Chettinad Chicken Chukka, would get my vegetarian friends intrigued, I decided to try out with vegetables, soya chunks, cottage cheese etc., so that even they would not be left out from experiencing this moreish Culinary creation of the Chettiers  The ingredient which was unanimously loved by one and all in the famous Chettinad Chukka Masala, was Cauliflower. Now Chettinad Cauliflower Chukka is always on the menu whenever it's non vegetarian counterpart is there. Not only that Chettinad Cauliflower Chukka has won the heart of many of my fierce meat loving friends and family.

The Chettinad Cauliflower Chukka retains each and every ingredient that is used in the non vegetarian version. Only Cauliflower replaces the meat here. The result is a pure gastronomic delight. I can guarantee that this recipe results in a dish which many find it hard to believe that it is homemade as the taste is absolutely similar to that of a restaurant. So while planning for the Diwali Lunch Menu, which is a pure vegetarian menu, Chettinad Chicken Chukka had to be there. A very simple dish to cook, the melange of spices used are responsible for making this iconic curry what it is. Like I always emphasize that the best curries are a result of freshly ground spices, this one is no different. So let us take a look at the ingredients.

Himachali Chana Aloo Madra Recipe / Traditional Garbanzo Beans Curry From Himachal Pradesh  

Himachali Chana Aloo Madra the decadent, rich dish from one of the most beautiful States in India is a complete treat for the senses. Himachal Pradesh which means abode or land of snow in Sanskrit is true to its name. Nature has showered it's bounty on this state. The cuisine of this region is spicy and makes use of a lot of yogurt, cardamom powder and is generally slow cooked to bring forth the huge array of flavours. 

Himachali Chana Aloo Madra is a very special dish from here. It is basically a chick pea / garbanzo beans curry, which is cooked in a yogurt gravy and is perfumed with spices. It is noteworthy, that unlike most Indian curries, this does not make use of onions, ginger, garlic or tomatoes as its base masala. The entire curry is slow cooked in a yogurt gravy. I thought to balance out the Spicy dishes in my Diwali Lunch Menu, this Garbanzo Beans Curry in a very flavourful, yet mild yogurt base would be just the dish. I was absolutely right. It perfectly compliments the Fiery Mexican Rice and Spicy Chettinad Cauliflower, and also balances the light sweetness of the Beetroot Paneer Curry with its hint of Tang. The exact balance of flavours that I was looking for, in my main course.

Zauq E Shahi Recipe / Mini Gulab Jamun In Rabri / Fried Khoya ( Milk Solid ) Balls In Very Thick Milk 

Zauk E Shahi translates to Royal Taste.This dessert from the Awadhi Cuisine treasure trove combines the very popular Gulab Jamun with the quintessential Rabri. In Zauq E Shahi the Gulab Jamuns are served in a bowl of Rabri. Rabri is MILK simmered on slow flame till it reduces to 1/4th of it's original quantity. So 40 kg Milk will yield 10 Kg Rabri. Rabri is truly decadent with the layers of the Milk fat which forms at the top of the boiling Milk and stays in the Rabri as the milk reduces. In Zauq E Shahi, the Gulab Jamuns are smaller in size and are generally stuffed with pistachios and poppy seeds. This is a very indulgent and rich dessert and so befitting to be served during festivities, weddings and other celebrations. Serving Zauq E Shahi is like serving a piece of your tradition in a bowl. For Recipe, click the heading Right above.

So here we are with all the recipes and a brief introduction of all the dishes which have been assembled together to make the Festive Diwali Vegetarian Thali. This Thali is sure to add more happiness and yum into your Diwali Cheer.

Would Love To Hear From You. Do Leave Your Valuable Feedback In The Comments Below. If You Have Tried This Recipe Please Let Me Know How It Turned Out. If You Have Any Queries Regarding This Or Any Other Recipe In My Blog, Please Feel Free To Leave A Comment Here Or Email Me At piyalimutha@gmail.com . For The Latest Updates Of My Blog And Loads Of Food Stories Stay Tuned To My Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Flipboard Accounts. Let The Food Adventure Continue In Your Kitchen...

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