February 12, 2009

Soy Cutlets...

Last week, I opened my pantry and it seemed to have a taken a life of its own, growing and reproducing more than I actually stored in it. For every box that I take out, two more fall out from behind it. However organized the pantry is, after the kids ransack through it and I shove stuff into it, during instant clean ups, it gets messy soon enough.
Every 2-3 months, I have to reorganize and take stock of the endless grocery outings. I am sure all of you have had this experience at least once. So I set out to clean it and guess what I found? Amongst all the spice jars and sauces and powders, there was a packet of Nutrela Soy Chunks that I had bought in the hope and dream of feeding my family healthy food. Once I followed a Sanjeev Kapoor recipe of soaking the soy in milk and making a subji with it, but that turned out to be too sweet. Unfortunately, soy was a failure as a stir fry, as a subji, as a curry and now it lay neglected and unwanted in the corner.

Soy is the poor man's meat..it looks like meat( vegetarians will disagree!!)though it doesn't taste anywhere near meat!!So I minced it and treated it exactly the way I cook with minced meat..sauteed with onions and spices and then mixed with potatoes..viola.. there you have it..soy cutlets...other than the slight taste of soy, the cutlet sensation took over and the chewy granules makes it taste just like meat cutlets.

Vegetarians may wonder why the emphasis on meat cutlets, given that they may like the taste of soy as is, but meat lovers will understand the point. If I made it into a tikki, it just tastes weird and chewy. Getting a meat loving household to try anything remotely soy and healthy is a challenge and when they like it, it is worth blogging. Try it and let me know if it passed in your house or not.

You will need: To make 10-12 cutlets

Nutrela Soy chunks- 1 cup
White Potato-3 medium sized
Onions- 2 medium sized ones
Green chilies- 8
Roasted Coriander Powder- 1 tsp
Turmeric- A pinch
Ginger-garlic paste-1 1/2 tsp
Black pepper- 2 tsp
Biryani Masala/Garam masala- ½ tsp (optional)
Lemon juice- 2 tsp.
Salt to taste
Coriander leaves- 1 cup chopped finely
Canola Oil- ½ cup
Egg –1
Bread crumbs- 1 cup
1. Soak the soy chunks in warm water for half hour and then squeeze out every ounce of water from it. Mince the soy chunks in a mixer/food processor without water.
Chop the onions, garlic and chilies finely and put in a shallow pan, with 1 or 2 tbsp oil. Let it saute for 5 minutes and then add the minced granules, turmeric,and coriander powder. Keep stirring to prevent any particles from sticking to the pan. 2. After 10 minutes, take the mixture off the flame and add the lemon juice, garam masala and pepper.
3. Meanwhile, wash each of the potatoes, wipe them dry and cover with plastic wrap. Place them in the microwave and adjust the setting for the baked potatoes. All the potatoes can be cooked at the same time. Alternatively, the washed potatoes can be pressure cooked with ½ cup water for a single whistle.
4. Peel the potatoes and mash them with your hands/potato masher or the back of a spoon. There should be no lumps.
5. Add the soy mixture to the potato, and add the chopped coriander leaves and salt. Mix and taste and add more salt or lemon juice if needed.
6. Make lemon sized balls of the mixture and shape it into an oval or round shape.
Beat the egg (Use just the egg whites) with a pinch of salt. Keep a plate with bread crumbs also ready.
7. Dip each oval ball into the egg and then into the bread crumbs. Give it a final shaping.
8. Heat little oil (should cover the cutlets only half way) in a pan and shallow fry the cutlets till brown on either side. Serve with ketchup/chutney.


indosungod said...

I know what you mean, I am not fond of soy granules or chunks. But the cutlets sure looks delicious. Should I try ;)

Happy cook said...

I love cutlets it always reminds me oiof Bharath coffe house and indian coffee house.
I have never made them with soy.
Looks so yumm.

Asha said...

Sounds exactly like my pantry! Hahaha! I know! Once my kids move out, I have big plans to clean up and organize everything in the house, it is useless to do that now, specially their rooms.

Soy chunks, I tried once, didn't like it and never bought again. I know it's nutritious but can't bring myself cook with that again. Your cutlets looks golden brown and looks delicious, may be I will try one more time! :)

My comfort food network said...

I get your point, in a meat eating household, soy takes the back seat. My mom used to make it at her place, but very very rarely. Soy has never come into my kitchen here. But I sure would like to try your recipe. Looks as good as the meat cutlets.

Mallugirl said...

indo..do try..and let me know honestly. i won't feel bad if u don't like it.

happy cook..ICH.. a very venerable institution!!have u been to the ICH in TVM?

Asha, once the kids move out, u will be so bored of doing the cleanup with no one to mess it up, that u will stop cleaning. I agree, soy chunks taste too medicinal..but would love to get ur opinion after trying this.

MY comfort.. ur name is a mouthful.. :)
so u know what i mean. hah haa.

TBC said...

I use 'cutlet' and "tikki" interchangeably. Did not even know that there is that much of a difference...
I too try incorporating soy granules/nuggets into various dishes but it always tastes funny and the rubbery/chewy texture ( despite the soaking, squeezing etc) is all too obvious in the final product...
Your cutlets look good.

Geeta said...

Those cutlets look so mouth wateringly great.
Wish we were neighbors and could swap food.

Nags said...

mu husband is veg but he loves soy chunks. I tried a few diff curry recipes but his favorite is soy chunks in the egg curry gravy, with a dash of coconut milk.

i have to try these cutlets but i am so lazy at the thought of making them..

Anonymous said...

lol...enjoying cleanups..worth it..
soy cultlets looks yummy and tempting yaar..pass on the plate.

Anonymous said...

the soy's meat texture generaly
really put me off.. but cutlets sounds like a gud option..
here chinese veg restuarants u can get veg chicken, veg mutton/beef/fish etc..they do tast gud...whn u com i'll take u ;)

Mallugirl said...

TBC, tikki is unbreaded and fried with very little oil on slow heat to get the crunchy hash-browny crust. Cutlets are breaded and shallow fried. It's ok to use it interchangeably .:)
Geeta, cmon over and we will make food for each other.

Nags, u ..lazy? with all the time to sit and take such wonderful photos? not really hard..takes as much time(or even less) as your spicy baby potatoes which i made recently.ha ha.

ki, The chewy texture does stand out a lot when it's used in curries and rice so i stopped adding them in everything. i tried soy cheese once ..ugh!! and there are veg hot dogs here..ugh!!! and so when i visit you , no way u are going to take me to the fake places..only good food.

Ann, a yaar from you sounded so funny!!made my morning cuppa smile.

lan said...

oh my goodness! i literally drooled over those cutlets! don't do this to me on a relaxed friday evening:-)

sra said...

I got a recipe for soya cutlets from a low-carb cookbook - with soyabean dal, etc. It was v involved, never made it again, but they were delicious. I, for one, don't mind the taste of chunks - they're tolerable when they don't taste of themselves :-) so the gravy becomes paramount.

Sukanya Ramkumar said...

This is a very nice recipe. Looks so good. Very different idea....YUM!.

Sandeepa said...

I love both soy granules and chunks. They don't have a taste of their own, but soaks up taste of the gravy.

That pantry sounds very familiar.
Those soy cutlets look great and anyway i love soy in almost all forms :D

Superchef said...

that sounds healthy!! good way of soy intake for me...im generally not a big fan!the cutlets look soo crispy and perfect!!glad to have found your blog..

Namratha said...

I've been looking for recipes to use up the box of soya chunks lying in my pantry, this sounds like a good one! The cutlets are perfect :)Thanks for sharing!

vids said...

hi Shaheen,

i am a big fan of your blog. love reading all the stories about the recipes as well as trying to make some of them :)
On a side note, I wanted to see some recipes from the essence of kerala cuisine link, but I am unable to see any recipes there. Do I have to subscribe to it?

Jyothsna said...

I found a bag of soy granules that I gave away!! Next time I'll try your method - not a fan of soy!

Neha said...

Your cutlets looks good. I too wanted to incorporate soya in my diet, but only dish i liked it is with Ridge gourd turai, which i make often, now can try this too, as its there in my pantry too... waiting..

Anonymous said...

Looks delicious....!!!!! Am trying them today and will post for the taste :))

Anonymous said...

as expected they turned out to be too good :)) Now I have my family like SOY! not to forget I also added spinach to the mixture before frying :)