I grew up in the lovely eastern state of Orissa sun drenched and bordered by the mighty India Ocean. The abundance of rich soil and the industry of the farmers meant that fresh food was always plentiful and the variety of fruits and vegetables encouraged the local populace to experiment with different ways of cooking and with the introduction of spices from the southern states and the influx of the Moghuls from the North who bought their meat & saffron & sweetmeat resulted in a confluence of culinary delights that was simply pure soul food. I should remember to write up a post on the culinary journey of my humble home state in India.
Food became such an entrenched part of the culture that even today at the Jaganath temple in Puri the lord enjoys a hearty breakfast of 7 dishes, his mid-morning snack around 10:00 AM has 13 dishes to appease him, not surprisingly lunch is the highlight with a whopping 40 dishes that are offered to keep the lord’s belly full, This allows the lord to enjoy a wonderful nap to which he wakes up to a 9 dish offering around 8PM and finally wrapping up the evening with a 8 dish offering at late night.
This elaborate ritual of cooking can be traced back to the 4 sacred places of pilgrimage that every devout Indian makes, it is said and believed that the lord Vishnu takes His bath at Rameswaram, meditates at Badrinath, dines at Puri and retires at Dwarika.
Hence, the temple food “Mahaprasad” (not simply prasad) at Puri is held to be of supreme importance. The Mahaprasad is sold in Anand Bazar or the Pleasure Mart of the temple which is situated on the north east corner of the outer enclosure of the temple. It is the biggest open-air hotel in the world where every day thousands of devotees purchase and eat together forgetting their caste, creed and status.
Little wonder food has percolated into the common person’s household. Watching my mom cook meals full of flavour as part of our daily repertoire. There was a constant humdrum in the kitchen starting from the elaborate spread of breakfast to lunches, afternoon snacks and dinner of course topped up with a sweet meat at the end.
Every meal that my mum cooked was hearty and often reflected our moods and emotions for the day. I have fond memories of our monthly supermarket trips and regular visit to the local vegetable vendors, often haggling for the best possible price. Some days my mum would quickly rustle up something quick and then there were many occasions we were treated with varieties, more evidently dished out after watching some of her favourite cooking shows on the television.
Coming to my in-laws family, I found the same spirit and same saga with an even greater enthusiasm & momentum. The constantly busy kitchen with even more varieties and more gourmet style cooking was absolutely thrilling for me. Being more inclined towards baking and a self-professed foodie myself. I found a common platform with my MIL to share my recipes and get exposed to some of her fine authentic recipes handed down as a family heirloom.
This particular recipe reminds me and my husband of the fond memories of our mum’s cooking and interestingly when I spoke to him about this, he was very excited about the boiled egg being coated with minced chicken and deep fried….It is like an Indian version of the traditional English meat loaf.
Originally this recipe is made with boiled egg and wrapped with sausage meat and deep fried. With spices and seasoning added to mince chicken keema, it has its own distinct flavor, A bit tedious & time consuming but definitely worth trying.
- 6 Eggs
- 500g Chicken mince
- 1 tsp Ginger paste
- 1 tsp Garlic paste
- 3 to 4 crushed cardamom
- 3 to 4 crushed cloves
- 1 inch stick cinnamon
- ¼ cup fresh coriander leaves
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp Chaat masala
- ½ lemon juice
- 1 cup Bread crumbs
- ½ cup or more plain flour
- oil for deep frying
- Boil and shell 5 eggs and reserve 1 Egg for coating.
- Take a bowl and add chicken mince,garlic paste, ginger paste, whole spices, dry masala powder and coriander leaves.
- Add lemon juice and season it with salt.
- Arrange two plates one with plain flour and other with the bread crumbs and a bowl with reserved egg whisk properly.
- Take a boiled egg,roll it in the plain flour and take some mince and wrap it around the egg covering it properly.
- Roll it again in the flour and dip it in the whisked egg and coat it with bread crumbs. Follow the same process with remaining eggs.
- Heat oil in a deep frying pan and fry them on a medium heat until golden brown.Drain excess oil using the paper towel, Serve them hot with preferred
- sauce or chutney