Three dishes that combine the best of Indian spices

Blessed with a treasure trove of spices, Indian cuisine has always made best use of the different flavours to cook a variety of dishes, vegetarian and non-vegetarian. Here are three recipes that blend a variety of spices to come up with dishes that will go well with chappati or rice.

Curry patte aur kalimirch ka jhinga (Curry leaves and black pepper spiced tandoor cooked prawn)


Prawns (big): 8

Black pepper crushed: One and a half teaspoon

Curry leaves (fried and crushed): 3 table spoon

Lemon: 1

Salt: to taste

Freshly roasted cumin powder: 1 teaspoon

Chat masala: Half teaspoon

Ginger garlic paste: 2 teaspoon

Hung yoghurt: One and a half teaspoon

Refined oil (for basting): 1 tablespoon


Take a vessel. Add ginger garlic paste, black pepper powder, crushed curry leaves, cumin powder and hung yoghurt. Make a marinade with that. Sprinkle salt and lemon juice on the prawns and keep aside for five minutes. Add marinade in to the prawns, mix well and keep the prawns for five minutes. Skewer the prawn and cook in a tandoor oven till it’s done. Take it out, sprinkle some chat masala and serve with mint chutney.

Dum ki nalli (Lamb shank curry in Awadhi style)


Lamb shank (mutton nalli): 500 gm

Onion (sliced): 200 gm

Tomato chopped: 75 gm

Ginger garlic paste: 1 tbsp

Green chilli, slit: 4

Cashew nut: 2 tbsp

Refined oil: 3 tbsp

Kashmiri red chilli powder: 1 tsp

Turmeric powder: Half tsp

Coriander powder: One and a half tsp

Mace powder: Half tsp

Green cardamom: Half tsp

Garam masala: 1 tsp

Salt to taste

Mutton stock: 3 cup

Saffron: a pinch


Peel and slice the onion. Chop the tomato. Dry roast the cashew nut and make a fine paste. Wash and clean the shank. Take a thick bottom pan put it on fire, add oil and let it reach till smoking point, then lower the flame and add sliced onion and sauté till onion turns golden brown. Then add ginger garlic paste and cook till raw flavour is removed. Add lamb shank and sauté on medium flame for five minute. Add chopped tomato and cook till tomato gets mashed. To this, add the Kashmiri red chilli powder, turmeric powder, and coriander powder cook till oil leaves the side of pan. Put in the slit green chillies and cashew nut paste cook for five minutes. Add salt. Finally, the green cardamom powder, mace powder, and garam masala go in and cook for a minute. Put in the mutton, stock seal the pan with silver foil and cook the lamb shank till the shank leaves the bone. Garnish with saffron and serve the nalli with Indian breads.

Chilgoja palak Falli (Pinenut, spinach and beans subzi)


Beans: 150 gm

Tomato: 1

Spinach fresh: 75 gm

Pine nut (chilgoja): 2 tbsp

Chat masala: 1tsp

Cumin powder: Half tsp

Ginger chopped: 1tsp

Garlic: Half tsp

Lemon juice: 1 tsp

Salt to taste

Chopped coriander leaves: 1 tbsp.

Olive oil: 1tbsp

Dry red chilli: 2


Clean, wash and cut the spinach; cut the tomato in 1/8 size. Dry roast the pine nut, blanch the beans and keep aside. Take a pan, put It on the fire, add olive oil and chopped garlic and sauté for few seconds. Add chopped ginger and dry red chilli and cook till the raw flavoured is removed. Put in the blanched beans and sauté for one minute and then the shredded spinach. Cook for 1minute. Mix in all the powders, masala, lemon juice and salt and toss it for 30 seconds. Sprinkle fresh coriander leaves and serve hot.

(Rishikesh Rai is executive chef, Vivanta by Taj, Kovalam)