I have been away from the blogging world for almost 3 weeks now and it feels like forever. But I’m back in action!!! So many wonderful things have happened in the last 3 weeks including my first scientific publication, writing a book chapter, writing my PhD thesis and several dance performances, that kept me away from my camera. Ofcourse, cooking happened regularly because nothing can keep me away from food :). Anyway, several crazy weekends later I have finally found time to use my camera and hence decided to update my blog. This weekend was more of a chai drinking…book reading…sleep/relaxation weekend. Hence I wanted to make something that would go well with chai and there was only one thing that came to my mind: Vegetable puff. I’ve had some really yummy ones during my undergrad days in Chennai. The crispy outer layers and the spicy potato based stuffing inside…Ooohhh…YUM. There are several ways of making the stuffing but here I will be presenting my mom’s recipe. With the frozen pastry sheets this dish is so easy to make.
You can either use pastry sheets or pastry shells. With pastry sheets you have to cut them to suit your requirements whereas the pastry shells can be used directly because they have been precut.
Onion – 1 large (chopped)
Tomato- 2 (chopped)
Potato – 3 large (boiled and mashed)
Carrots – 1 cup (boiled and mashed)
Peas- 1 cup (boiled)
Garlic – 3 pods
Chilli powder- One and a half tsp
Coriander power – 2 tsp
Salt to taste
Cumin seeds – 1tsp
Oil – 2 tsp
To make the stuffing:
1. Boil all the vegetables and mash them up. I usually boil the potatoes in a pressure cooker (3 whistles) and the carrots & peas (in water) in the microwave.
2. In a sauté pan, add 2 tsp oil and add cumin seeds and sauté till the seeds turn golden brown.
3. Add chopped onion and garlic and sauté till the onion turns translucent and slightly golden.
4. Now add the tomatoes and sauté for another 3-4 mintes.
5. Now add the spices (chilli, coriander and salt) and cook for another 3-4 minutes.
6. Add the mashed vegetables and cook them till the veggies take up all the spices.
7. Add finely chopped cilantro at the very end and mix it well.
Now the veggie stuffing is ready
To make the outer layer:
You can either use pastry sheets or pastry shell:
1. Thaw the shells at room temperature and bake them at 400F for about 17-20 minutes (till the outer coat becomes nice golden brown) in a baking dish.
2. Cut open the shells and place 1 tbsp of stuffing (depending on how much stuffing you want to add) into the bottom half of the shell and close the top half to make a nice sandwich.
1. Cut the pastry sheets into 4 slices (as shown in the picture).
2. Place the masala on one of the sides and use the other half to cover it
3. Bake it for 20 minutes at 400F with the stuffing inside.
So the basic difference is that the pastry sheets are baked with the stuffing inside and the pastry shells are baked separately and the stuffing is added later.
Serve it with tomato ketchup.