So, you’ve finally decided to try something different in your kitchen — some challenging dishes and tricky recipes. Well, there are many dishes and recipes available, but Indian food has a unique flavor and feel, and it’s a typical south Asian way of sharing happiness.
Indian food has its own way of cooking, and it requires time. So, if you’re good at using pressure cookers, you will always deliver optimized flavors for everyone.
This post shares some of the best tips from Indian chefs, encompassing the following essential steps:
- Planning tips
- Prep before cooking
- Indian cooking
Furthermore, you will read about the essential elements that can help reduce your cooking time considerably. So, let’s dig deeper and find out how you can cut your cooking time and energy while preparing an Indian recipe.
3 Ways to Save Time in Indian Cooking
Planning is important because you’re not going to deal with simple menus and ready-made ingredients. So, here are some quick tips:
- Plan the Menu: Indian food will not be complete without rice, salad, raita (a mixture of yogurt, black pepper, and salt) and Parathas (flatbread having layers of cooked dough).
- Don’t stick to just one dish, but rather have a combination of sweet and spicy flavors for different kinds of people.
- Keep the Vegetables Fresh: Store the vegetables by wrapping them in paper in the refrigerator. It will help keep them fresh for longer than two days.
- Follow the Recipes: After following the entire recipe for the first time, make necessary adjustments the next time you cook, to get the right flavor and taste.
- Prepare a Comprehensive List: Categorize the items into special and unusual. It will help you keep a check on the things you already have and those that you should buy ahead of time.
- Preps Before Cooking
- Retain the Color of Vegetables: You can do so by adding a pinch of sugar. Do it with those green leafy veggies.
- For Beans, Pulses, and Vegetables: For quick cooking, soak these items for at least 25 to 40 minutes, and add a pinch of salt for flavor before cooking. With electric pressure cookers, you can put them in directly, but the cooking time will rise slightly.
- For Briyani (Decorative Rice): it is better to cook rice earlier, before layering it and mixing the gravy, then finally cooking the whole mixture.
- For Dosas: add one tablespoon of fenugreek leaves with pre-soaked pulses and rice.
- Defrosting: always defrost the ingredients and frozen items before cooking.
- Cooking Tips
You can cook many items quickly with the following tips:
- For Samosas and Pakoras (Snacks): add one tablespoon of rice and one cup of baking soda to preserve the crisp. For pakoras, you need to add a bit of hot oil before frying them.
- For Rice: to ensure perfectly cooked rice, cook it in a pressure cooker.
- For Fish: Add in the cooking oil before frying your fish. In this way, the fish will not stick to the pan.
- Be Ready Before Cooking: all ingredients must be in front of you before you begin to cook.
Essential Items for Indian Cooking
Here’s how you can save time with these common ingredients used in Indian recipes
For unique taste and flavors, Indian dishes always have homemade spices. They’re compulsory items for Indian cooking. Here’s what you should do:
- Before grinding, make sure all the spices are dried up completely. Expose the spices to sunlight. You can save your time by roasting them in an electric pressure cooker.
- In your free time, prepare the spices in powdered form
Now all you need is to blend these spices with the food.
#2. Paste & Puree
Pastes and purees, like ginger & garlic paste, tomato puree, and brown onion are important for different varieties of Indian food. You may want to add one or all of them to make the gravies thick. Here are some tips:
- For Ginger/Garlic Paste: If you add a pinch of salt and allow the paste to refrigerate, it will stay fresh for months.
- Tomato Puree: prepare the tomato puree and freeze it in ice-cube trays.
- For Onions: if you add a little bit of salt, your onions will brown faster.
We should mention that the majority of Indian food is eaten without spoons and forks. The reason is, people in South Asia like to eat nan, parathas, and chapattis made of wheat dough. You can cut your preparation time for Parathas and Chapattis if you prepare the dough during your free time and store it in a refrigerator. Prepare enough dough that can be used for five days, but not longer than that.