Mowgli Street Food: Recipes from Nisha Katona’s Mowgli Street Food Restaurant!

December 12, 2018

Food straight from the streets of India brought to you by Nisha Katona, the founder of Mowgli Street Food restaurants…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Masala Omelette Wrap

Wow, the power of social media cannot be understated. Nor can its absolute usefulness in being able to turn a business like Mowgli around on a dime. The omelette wrap is a very common Indian meal. We have it at breakfast, lunch, dinner or supper. It is a delicious, oozing dish, but it sold terribly. I put the question out on Facebook as to why it was unpopular – had it been flavour, I would have pulled it off the menu. The feedback was instant. No-one in England wants to go to a restaurant and order a dish with the word ‘omlette’ in it. Overnight it became the Mowgli masala wrap and the sales trebled. This is one of our staff favourites.

Prep: 5 minutes/ Cook: 10 minutes/ Serves: 1

Ingredients:

  • 50g/2oz/½ cup grated cheddar cheese
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh coriander/cilantro
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • ¼ red onion, finely sliced
  • 1 small red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
  • 2 eggs
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 chapati
  • 1 tbsp Mowgli chutney

Method:

  • Preheat your grill/broiler. Mix together the grated cheese, ground coriander, ground cumin and fresh coriander and set aside.
  • Put the vegetable oil in a small non-stick frying pan and set over a medium heat. When hot, add the red onion and red chilli and fry for 4 minutes or until the onion is soft and translucent.
  • Whisk the eggs lightly with a fork, then pour into the pan and give everything a quick mix. Season with the salt and cook gently until the eggs are just set, then sprinkle the cheese mixture on top of the eggs and place under the grill. Grill/broil for 3–4 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling and golden.
  • Take your chapati and spoon on the Mowgli chutney, then carefully slide the cooked omelette out of the pan and on top of the chapati. Roll tightly, slice in half at an angle and serve immediately.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mowgli Chip Butty

Indians who live across the world cannot help but pimp local dishes to make them taste more Indian. Spice is a drug for us. We can go a couple of days on bangers and mash but then we start to sneak adulterants into our grub to get that spice hit. Whenever we brought chips into our home, if we turned our back on them, my mother would have done this chip butty thing to them. This involved red onion, green chilli and a hot pickle in a roti wrap. It drove me and my brother mad, but we loved it. This is one of our big sellers, so well done Maa.

Prep: 5 minutes/ Cook: 20 minutes/ Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 5 large Maris Piper potatoes, cut into 1cm/½ inch cubes
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped red onion
  • 2½ tsp chat masala
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tbsp fresh coriander/cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 4 tbsp green chilli pickle
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 4 rotis
  • 4 tbsp Mowgli chutney

Method:

  • In a large saucepan set over a medium-high heat, add the chopped potatoes, salt and ground turmeric and cover with cold water. Bring up to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 8–10 minutes or until the potatoes become soft but still hold together. Drain well and set aside.
  • In a large non-stick frying pan set over a medium-high heat, add the vegetable oil. When hot, add the drained potatoes and fry for 8 minutes, stirring regularly, until golden brown and crisp.
  • Put the potatoes into a large bowl and add the red onion, chat masala, ground coriander, fresh coriander, green chilli pickle and salt and toss well until everything is fully combined.
  • Lay each roti out on a flat work surface, then spread a tablespoon of the Mowgli chutney down the middle of each. Spoon equal amounts of the fried potatoes onto the Mowgli chutney, then carefully roll each roti tightly. Using a sharp knife cut each chip butty in half, then serve with the remaining fried potatoes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Treacle Tamarind Fries

I eat in Mowgli twice a day. I am forever in the kitchen looking at new permutations and combinations of what lies within to perk up my lunch. I found myself often going in to chat to the chefs, dipping the Fenugreek Kissed Fries into the sauce of the Tamarind Treacle Ribs. This is how this dish evolved, from my hungry childlike meddlings around the Mowgli hobs. These fries are sweet, you don’t need many, but there is something so wrong yet so right about them. And I bet they are the only Treacle Tamarind Fries on the planet.

Prep: 5 minutes / Cook: 20 minutes / Serves: 4–6

Ingredients:

  • 4 large Maris Piper potatoes, cut into 2cm/¾ inch cubes
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp ground turmeric
  • 100ml/3½fl oz/scant ½ cup tamarind
  • treacle sauce, more if needed
  • 1½ tsp chat masala
  • ½ red onion, finely diced
  • 1 small red chilli, finely sliced
  • ½ bunch of fresh coriander/cilantro, roughly chopped

Method:

  • In a large saucepan set over a medium-high heat, add the chopped potatoes, salt and ground turmeric and cover with cold water.
  • Bring up to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 8–10 minutes or until the potatoes become soft but still hold together.
  • Drain well and set aside.
  • In a large non-stick frying pan set over a medium-high heat, add the tamarind treacle sauce and reduce by about a half until sticky and gloopy.
  • Toss the drained potatoes with the chat masala, then add to the tamarind treacle sauce and toss vigorously until fully coated. The potatoes should have a glossy sheen.
  • Finish by sprinkling over the red onion, red chilli and fresh coriander just before serving.

 

Fenugreek Kissed Fries

No Indian would fry potatoes without first rubbing them with turmeric. Turmeric is a deep earthy flavoured root, ground to make a golden yellow powder. This spice adds to the earthiness of potatoes, which makes them taste sweeter and richer. I add fenugreek as it lifts them to another spicy level. This is how I cook my roast potatoes at home too, but with a sprinkling of brown sugar and garlic purée.

Prep: 5 minutes / Cook: 20 minutes / Serves: 4–6

Ingredients:

  • 4 large Maris Piper potatoes, cut into 2cm/¾ inch cubes
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • ½ tsp fenugreek seeds
  • ½ red onion, finely sliced
  • 1 small red chilli, finely sliced, plus extra to serve
  • ½ bunch of fresh coriander/cilantro, roughly chopped, plus extra to serve
  • 1 tbsp green chilli pickle

Method:

  • In a large saucepan set over a medium-high heat, add the chopped potatoes, salt and ground turmeric and cover with cold water. Bring up to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 8–10 minutes or until the potatoes become soft but still hold together. Drain well and set aside.
  • In a large non-stick frying pan set over a medium-high heat, add the vegetable oil.
  • When hot add the fenugreek and fry until the nuggets turn a dark brown. Add the drained potatoes and fry, stirring regularly, for 10 minutes or until the potatoes are golden and crisp.
  • When cooked through, put the potatoes in a large bowl and toss with the red onion, red chilli, fresh coriander and green chilli pickle until everything if fully coated. Finish by garnishing with freshly sliced red chilli and fresh coriander just before serving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yogurt Chat Bombs

Known in India as Dahi Puri, these are the ultimate flavour grenade and our

biggest seller by far at Mowgli. They have their own Twitter following and fan club. Introducing someone to their first chat bomb became something of a cult culinary practice in Liverpool. They are the fiddliest things on earth and only last about 5 minutes before turning limp and falling apart, so Mowgli has a dedicated chat chef who makes each one to order and sends them straight out. The pani puri are the trickiest part of creating the chat bomb. The casing is made of simple ingredients, but the devil is in the detail. The dough has to be exactly the right density and needs to be dry enough to form a tight, waterproof final fry. This is why Indians do not make these at home and instead street vendors become dedicated puri makers, making nothing else.

Prep: 25 minutes / Cook: 5 minutes / Serves: 2

Ingredients:

For the Tamarind Water: 

  • 45g/1½oz tamarind, seeds removed

For the Pani Puri

  • 80g/3oz/scant ½ cup fine semolina
  • 80g/3oz/½ cup plain/all-purpose flour
  • 3–4 tbsp soda water, more if needed
  • pinch of salt
  • vegetable oil, for deep frying

For the FIlling

  • 1 small red onion, finely diced
  • 50g/2oz canned chickpeas/garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 6 tsp green chilli pickle
  • 80g/3oz/¼ cup cumin raita
  • 2 tbsp pomegranate seeds
  • 2 tbsp fresh coriander/cilantro leaves
  • 4 tbsp sev noodles

Method:

  • To make the tamarind water, place the tamarind into a bowl and pour over 250ml/9fl oz/1 cup of boiling water. Leave to soak for 15 minutes. Using a fork mash the tamarind to a pulp, then strain the water into a clean bowl.
  • Pour 100ml/3½fl oz/scant ½ cup boiling water over the tamarind pulp and leave to soak for a further 15 minutes. Squeeze as much of the liquid as you can from the tamarind and add to the first batch of tamarind water. This makes more tamarind water than you need for this recipe and extra can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine the semolina, flour, soda water and salt. Mix until it forms a stiff dough, then knead well for 5 minutes. Rest under a damp cloth for 15 minutes.
  • Take the dough and divide into 40 equal-size portions. Roll each portion into 4cm/1½ inch circles, then place under a damp cloth and allow to rest for a further 5 minutes.
  • Take a large non-stick frying pan and set over a medium heat. Add enough vegetable oil until it is about 5cm/2 inches deep. To check the oil is ready for frying, take a little piece of dough and drop into the oil. It should sizzle, float to the top and turn a light brown.
  • When the oil is hot, carefully fry the pani puri in small batches for a couple of minutes. Give each puri a little press with a slotted spoon until they puff up and turn golden brown.
  • Remove from the oil and drain on paper towels. The extra pani puri can be put in an airtight container and stored for up to five days.
  • Take six of the pani puri and break a hole in each one large enough to add all the ingredients.
  • Put 1 teaspoon of the chopped red onion into each pani puri, then add six chickpeas to each.
  • Next, fill each pani puri a third of the way with the tamarind water, then add 1 teaspoon of the green chilli pickle and fill the rest of the way up with the cumin yogurt.
  • Finish by splitting the pomegranate seeds into each pani puri, add a few fresh coriander leaves and a pinch of sev noodles.
  • Eat in one bite!

 

 

 

Find Out More

Mowgli Street Food: Stories and recipes from the Mowgli Street Food restaurants, by Nisha Katona.
© Nourish Books, 2018. Hardback, £25.

 


Posted by: jack.hallam

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