chana masala

Here it is, after some requesting from my son and some of his friends. A quick and easy Chana Masala recipe. Enjoy!

  • 2 cans 15.5 oz Chick Peas
  • ½ tsp. Chili powder
  • ¼ tsp. Turmeric
  • ¼ tsp. Salt
  • 1 tblsp. Garlic and ginger paste
  • ½ cup Cilantro, freshly chopped
  • 1 Onion, medium sized, freshly chopped
  • 1 Tomato, medium sized, freshly chopped
  • 1 ½ cup Water
  • 2 tblsp. Lemon juice
  • 2 tblsp. Cooking oil
  • 2 tbslp. SHAN Chana Masala mix (available in any Pakistani or Indian store, like this »)


Empty the cans of chick peas in a strainer and rinse them under cold water. Set aside.

In a medium pot, heat the oil. Add 1/3 of the onion when the oil is a little hot, and sautee until golden brown. Add garlic and ginger paste. Stir for a minute then add 1 cup of water. Add the chili powder, turmeric, salt. Stir. Want things more spicy? Increase the amount of chili powder, or put 2 chopped, hot green chili peppers in the mix.

Add chick peas. Lower the heat to medium. Cover and let cook for 4-5 minutes then add ½ cup of water. (more if you feel that it’s sticking to  the bottom of the pan). Add Shan Chana Masala mix and mush the chick peas a little to give it a little thickness. Stir.

Add chopped onion, tomatoes and cilantro. Lower the heat and let cook for 5 minutes. Take the pot off the stove. Let it stand for a while then add the lemon juice.

If you want to add a little something extra for texture and taste, try adding potatoes:

Take 1 large or 2 medium potatoes, take care of the eyes, then wash and dice them with the skin on. Microwave them on high for about 8 minutes, covered with a paper towel. You’ll want to add them into the pot and cook them for 2-3 minutes and then add the chick peas.

gulab jamun

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups carnation milk powder
  • 3 tbls ( heaped ) all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp ( level ) baking powder
  • 3 tbs vegetable shortening
  • 2 eggs


Mix water and sugar in a saucepan. Boil. Then let it simmer, but do not make it thick and sticky. Keep it hot till the gulab jamuns are added.

Mix milk powder, all purpose flour, baking powder and shortening. Mix thoroughly with hands.

Break eggs, one at a time and mix with milk powder mixture. Knead to make it smooth , dough like.

Take a small portion of the dough and rolling it on the palms of your hands, make a ball. (makes about 24)

In a wok, heat oil ( vegetable oil ) To test the temperature, put a small bit of this gulab jamun dough in the oil, . If it rises up immediately, the oil temp is accurate, if it does not then wait for a few moments and then reduce the temperature to medium and start frying the gulab jamuns. Fry till they are deep brown. Put them in the syrup. Crush a few cardamoms and sprinkle over gulab jamuns. Cover the pan. Let it stand for fifteen minutes. Gulab jamuns will become fat and juicy.

Serve and enjoy !! Or if you prefer, store them in the fridge to make them cold.

roasted artichoke pesto

Courtesy Michael Chiarello,
Show: Easy Entertaining with Michael Chiarello
Episode: Appetizers for Dinner

  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3 large cloves garlic, quartered lengthwise
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon gray salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 packages frozen artichokes
  • 1/2 cup tightly packed fresh basil leaves


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

In a deep ovenproof pan, combine 1/2 cup olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, salt, and pepper.

Add the frozen artichokes and mix to coat.

Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally.

Cover with aluminum foil, transfer to the oven, and cook until the artichokes are browned in spots and tender when pierced, about 35 minutes.

Allow the artichokes to cool in the liquid.

Remove the bay leaf.

Put the cooled artichokes with the liquid into a blender.

Add the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil and basil leaves and process until smooth.