Hakka noodles/Chinese noodles

1 packet Hakka Noodles
1 spring onions bunch, sliced crosswise (I forgot to do it) greens and whites separated
1 cup cabbage shredded
1 cup thinly sliced multi colored capsicum
1 medium carrot, grated
1-2 garlic, finely minced
1/2 inch ginger finely minced
1 tsp White pepper powder (adjust as per taste)
2 tbsp Chings All in sauce  (If you don't have this use schezwan sauce or soy sauce, vinegar and tomato ketchup)
1 tbsp red chilli sauce (adjust as per taste)
Salt to taste
2 tbsp oil 

How I Made

1. Boil water in a large pot. Add noodles and salt to boiling water.
When noodles are about 90% cooked, drain noodles and run it under tap with cold water for a minute. Drain it completely and set aside until ready to use.

2. Heat up oil in a wide skillet. Once oil is hot add garlic, ginger saute for few seconds then add white part of spring onions,  capsicum, cabbage, carrots and toss on high flame for 2 minutes. Add sauces, salt and pepper and give everything a toss. 

3. Add noodles and saute for couple more minutes.

4. Garnish noodles with spring onions and serve it hot.

Note: You can add any other veggies. I did not have beans so I skipped it.  Adding bean sprouts also gives a good taste and increase the nutrition value of the dish.

Aloo methi/Potato Fenugreek Curry

Aloo methi is such a easy and a go to side dish which you can make in 20-25 minutes. Recently I had my cousin and her family visiting us from NY and this dish was on the menu and everyone liked it.

3 potatoes, peeled and cut into small pieces
1 big fresh fenugreek (methi) leaves bunch (use only leaves, wash thoroughly and chop it roughly)
4-5 finely chopped green chilies (adjust as per taste)
2 tsp coriander/dhania powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder/haldi
1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida (hing)
4 tbsp oil
Salt to taste
White sesame seeds (2 tbsp for garnish, optional)

How I Prepare

1. Heat oil in a pan, add hing, mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Allow mustard seeds to crackle. Add green chilies and potatoes and stir-fry for about 5 minutes.
2. Add turmeric powder, coriander powder and salt. Cook covered for 5 minutes on a medium flame. The potatoes should be 3/4 cooked by now.
3. Add fenugreek leaves and mix everything nicely and allow to cook for 5 more minutes on low flame.
4. Add sesame seeds and serve hot with roti's.

1. If you don't like the bitter taste of methi leaves, then soak it in salt water for 10-15 minutes and then squeeze the water out and use the leaves.
3. Also increase or decrease the quantity of methi leaves as per your taste

Green Chutney/Hari Chutney

Green chutney also known as Hari chutney is one of those ingredients without which our Indian chaats are incomplete. Probably it is most favorite sauce for dhoklas, samosas, bhaji... etc. and also used as a sandwich spread.  The chutney can be stored refrigerated for up to a week without freezing.

Green chutney is mainly made from mint leaves and coriander leaves. In addition to these  leaves few other ingredients like lemon juice, green chilies and salt are added to this chutney. I recently started to add 1/2 green capsicum to get some thickness.. Add little cooking oil if you are going to freeze the chutney. Adding oil increases the shelf life of chutney. 

2 cups chopped mint leaves (phudina)
1 cup chopped coriander (dhania)
1/2 capsicum chopped  (Optional)
1 - 2 tbsp lemon juice (Required - Helps in preserving chutney's green color)
4 - 6 green chilies (adjust as per taste)
salt to taste
1/4 tsp roasted cumin powder (optional, if add enhances the flavor)
1-2 tbsp oil

How I Prepare 
Combine all the ingredients and grind to a smooth paste in a blender. Add little water if required.
Refrigerate and use as required.

If freezing it 
1. Add 1 tbsp of cooking oil, during the last stage of blending and give a quick mix.  
2. I pour the chutney into the ice cube tray and keep the tray in freezer for few hours.

3. After few hours, take the chutney cubes out from the ice tray and store it in zipper lock. The chutney stays fresh for 2-3 months.

4. Take cubes as needed and defrost it.  It's ready to use. Enjoy !!!!

Storing Mint leaves (pudina)

Here in US everything you buy comes in bulk, same is the case with mint leaves. The bunch you get is similar to size of the spinach bunch or coriander and many times I don't need the entire bunch :( and not using it within a week or so... decrease the shelf life of the leaves and finally they end up in trash.  Finally I found a great tip to preserve them :) and there is no need to make chutney out of them or dry them or powder them. I have tried this tip multiple times and every time it's been a success.

Here goes the tip
(Leaves stay fresh like this for 2-3 months)
1. Separate the leaves from the stem.
2. Wash them and pat dry them.
3. Roughly chop if leaves are bigger  in size.
4. Take a ice cube tray, and arrange the leaves in it. Each cube should only be 3/4 filled with leaves.

5.  Fill the remaining 1/4 area of cube with cold water.

6. Place it in freezer for couple of hours.

7. After few hours remove the mint cubes from the ice tray and place them in zipper lock bag. Then seal the bag airtight.

8. When you are in need of mint, take a cube out. Defrost it and you have your fresh green mint leaves ready for use :)