Ingredients:
Makes 20-30 pieces 

  • 2 cups chickpea flour/channa besan/gram flour
  • 14 oz condensed milk (1 can)
  • 2 tablespoon + 1/2 cup ghee
  • 2 tablespoon + 1/2 cup liquid milk 
  • 1 tablespoon cardamom powder 
  • chopped nuts for garnishing 
  • 1/4 teaspoon mace/javatri powder *optional but highly recommended*
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt **if desired**
  • few strand of saffron * optional 

Method: 

  1. In a large bowl, add gram flour, 2 tablespoons of milk and 2 tablespoons of ghee. Mix well and rub between your palms to ensure that all ingredients are well incorporated. Break up any large lumps. You can sieve the mixture if you'd prefer or pulse in a blender for a few seconds to break up any lumps. 
  2. Add 1/2 cup of ghee in a heavy bottom pan over medium low heat. When warm, add gram flour mixture and roast for 20-25 minutes on low flame, stirring frequently. The mixture will turn to a golden orange in color and will have a beautiful aroma.
  3. Add 1/2 cup milk *you may soak the saffron in this milk if you're using it** and stir well. 
  4. Add condensed milk and spices and stir the mixture really well making sure all of the spices are well distributed. 
  5. Transfer mixture to a parchment paper / butter lined tray and spread well. Garnish with chopped nuts or edible silver. 
  6. Let set for at least 2 hours or preferable overnight. Cut into desired pieces and serve. 
Notes:
  • You can store this mohanthal in an airtight container for 10 days or in the refrigerator for up to 3 months. Bring to room temperature before serving. 
  • Be sure to roast this on low flame for at least 20 minutes or the mohanthal will taste raw. If your mohanthal doesn't set, let it sit out for longer. 

Mohanthal Recipe Fiji Style | Mohanthar Recipe Fiji Style | Easy Mohanthal Recipe

Sunday, August 14, 2022

 



Ingredients 
Makes about 15 pieces
  • 2 cups full fat milk powder 
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder 
  • 3 tablespoons liquid milk or heavy cream 
  • 3 tablespoons ghee
  • Sprinkles or nuts to decorate 
Syrup 
  • 1 cup sugar 
  • 1/2 cup water 

Method 

  1. In a mixing bowl, add milk powder, and the ghee in 2-3 increments. Mix well by rubbing in between your palms after each addition. 
  2. Add the liquid milk, 1 tbsp at a time and mix well. Mix until the mixture resembles coarse sand. 
  3. Sift cocoa powder into milk mixture and whisk to combine. 
  4. Quickly pulse milk & cocoa powder mixture in a food processor to break up any lumps and to mix thoroughly. Alternatively, you could shift or strain using a strainer. Set aside after blending well. 
  5. Line a baking pan or tray of your choice with parchment paper or grease with ghee.
  6. To prepare the sugar syrup, add sugar and water  to a heavy bottom pan and bring to a boil. Once the syrup boils, turn your heat to medium and let boil, stirring occasionally, for approximately 6-8 minutes. Start checking your syrup at the 5-minute mark. The syrup should be 1 thread consistency or about 240 degrees Fahrenheit (115C) on a candy thermometer. Please view video for a visual. 
  7. Once your syrup is ready, start adding it slowly to your dry mix. Don’t pour it all in at once, as you may not need it all (I’ve almost always used it all). The mixture will start to form a dough. 
  8. Quickly transfer to your prepared tray and flatten smooth. Add desired sprinkles and push into barfi with the back of a cup or spatula. 
  9. Let cool at room tempreture for approximately 30 minutes before scoring your barfi your desired pieces.  Let cool completely before taking out of pan. 
Notes:

I used a container that is 7.5 inches wide, 5.5 inches deep and 1.75 inches high. 

Chocolate Barfi Fiji Style | Chocolate Milk Barfi Recipe

Sunday, July 31, 2022


 

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 lbs firm white fish, gutted, cleaned, and cut into desired pieces (650 grams approximately)
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 8-10 cloves of garlic, crushed 
  • 1 inch ginger, crushed 
  • Hot pepper to taste, crushed 
  • Curry leaves, 1-2 sprigs
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon asefotida/hing
  • 2 tablespoon gram flour/besan
  • 2  tablespoon hot Fiji Masala or garam masala
  • 1.5 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 tablespoon oil for curry
  • 2 tablespoon tomato paste or 2 whole tomatoes chopped 
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind paste/concentrate mixed with 1/4 cup water 
  • 13.5 fl oz canned coconut milk (398 ml)
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2-1 cup water *adjust to your liking*
  • oil to fry fish
  1. Take garlic cloves, ginger, and hot peppers and crush into a paste. 
  2. In a shallow bowl, take cleaned and cut fish and marinate using 1 teaspoon of the ginger/garlic/pepper paste, 1/2 teaspoon turmeric, 1 tablespoon Fiji masala, 2 tablespoons of gram flour, salt and some water to coat fish properly. Let fish marinate for 30 minutes if desired 
  3. Heat enough oil to fry fish in a heavy bottom pan. Once oil is hot, add fish pieces, making sure to not crowd the pan. Fry until golden brown. Fry all fish pieces and set aside. 
  4. In a different pan, add 2 tablespoons of oil and heat on medium. Once hot, add onions and curry leaves and sauté for a few minutes or until onions are translucent.
  5. Add cumin seeds and cook until they splutter. 
  6. Add ginger-garlic-pepper paste and cook for a couple of minutes. 
  7. Add fiji masala, turmeric, asafetida, and tomato paste. Cook for a few minutes or until the oil separates from the spice mix. 
  8. Add tamarind water,1 cup of water, and coconut milk and mix well. 
  9. Add fried fish pieces and stir gently. Season with salt and cook covered for about 10 minutes on medium low heat. 
  10. Garnish with cilantro, additional chopped peppers and enjoy! 

Fresh Fish Curry Fiji Style | Machari Ke Surwa Fiji Style | Fijian Fish Curry

Thursday, July 28, 2022


 Ingredients:

  • 1 (4-5 lb) chicken cut into pieces 
  • 3 cups basmati rice
  • 1 cup onions, sliced
  • 1 head of garlic, crushed
  • 2 inch ginger, grated/crushed
  • handful of cilantro leaves (plus some more for garnishing) 
  • 5-8 chili peppers crushed/grated (or to taste)
  • 1 sprig of curry leaves
  • 2 Indian bay leaves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 star anise 
  • 2.5 tablespoons + 1 tablespoon pulao masala
  • 1 tablespoon hot Fiji masala or garam masala
  • 1/4 cup ghee
  • 3 tablespoons oil (or additional ghee)
  • salt to taste (start with 1 teaspoon and adjust to your liking)
  • 4.5 cups room temperature/cold water 
Method:

  1. Thoroughly wash your chicken pieces after cutting. Marinate your chicken pieces with 1 tablespoon of pulao masala either overnight or 1-2 hours before cooking. The longer you marinate it, the better!
  2. Grind your garlic, ginger, hot peppers, and cilantro to a fine paste. 
  3. Wash and soak your rice right before you start cooking -- approximately 30 minutes
  4. In a big, heavy bottom pot, add ghee and oil on medium high heat. Once hot, add onions and fry until brown, about 5-8 minutes. 
  5. Add in the whole spices - cinnamon, bay leaves, star anise, and cumin seeds. Sauté for a couple of minutes. 
  6. Add the curry leaves, ginger-garlic-pepper-cilantro paste, and cook for a few minutes or until ghee/oil separates from the paste. Be sure not to burn the garlic. 
  7. Add in 2.5 pulao masala and/or hot Fiji masala and cook for 2-3 minutes or until the ghee/oil separates from the spice mix. 
  8. Add chicken pieces, salt to taste, and stir until all of the spices have coated the chicken. Scrape all the spice mix throughly. Cover your pot, lower your heat to medium/medium-low and cook for 10-12 minutes or until the chicken juices/water/liquid dries up. Be sure to stir frequently to make sure the spices don't stick to the bottom of the pan. 
  9. Once the liquid has dried up, add the water and stir well. Make sure all of the rice is submerged under the rice. Let water come to a boil. 
  10. Once water boils, cover with a lid, lower your heat to simmer or the lowest setting on your stove and cook for 20-25 minutes undisturbed! Do not uncover and peak, just let it cook. 
  11. After 25 minutes, turn off the stove and stir your pulao carefully to ensure rice pieces don't break. 
  12. Cover again for 10-15 minutes and let sit. Keep the stove off! 
  13. After 10-15 minutes, you can garnish with chopped cilantro and lemon wedges and serve hot! 
  14. Enjoy! 

Fiji Style Chicken Pulao Recipe | How to make Chicken Pulao Fiji Style

Wednesday, July 20, 2022


 

Ingredients: 

  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 tablespoon black peppercorn
  • 4 star anise
  • 1 whole nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon whole cardamom pods
  • 2 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cloves
  • 1 tablespoon broken cinnamon sticks (7 inch piece) 
  • 4-5 dry chilis
  • 1 mace/javatri (optional)


Method:

  1. Heat a heavy bottom pan on medium/medium high heat
  2. Once pan is hot, add black peppercorn, star anise, whole nutmeg, and whole cardamom pods. 
  3. Roast these larger spices for 5-7 minutes stirring frequently to avoid burning the spices or uneven growing. 
  4. Add all other spices and roast for an additional 5-6 minutes or until the coriander seeds turn brown. Be sure to keep stirring frequently to avoid burning your spices. 
  5. Turn off heat and keep stirring for an additional 2 minutes. 
  6. Transfer the spices to a open tray or plate and let cool completely.
  7. Once cool, grind the spices into a powder using a spice grinder or coffee grinder.
  8. Let spice mix cool completely before storing in an airtight container. Will last 3-6 months if stored properly. If you don't use this spice frequently, you can store it in a airtight container in the fridge to increase it shelf life to 1 year. 


Pulao Masala Fiji Style | Homemade Palao Masala Recipe | Fijian Pulao Masala Recipe

Monday, July 18, 2022


This shrimp dish is so quick and easy yet so satisfying! Growing up we had shrimp quite often as it was readily available on the islands! Now-a-days, I like to cook this at least once a month because its so easy and yet so delicious! 

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb/16 oz peeled & deveined shrimp 
  • 2 tablespoon oil
  • 1 cup onions, chopped (about 1 large onion)
  • 1 cup tomatoes, chopped (2-3 tomatoes)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 8-10 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 inch ginger, grated/crushed
  • hot pepper to taste
  • 2-3 sprigs curry leaves
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tablespoon garam/Fiji masala 
  • 1/4 cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 cup water ** adjust as needed
  • salt to taste 
Method:

  1. Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan on medium to medium high heat.
  2. Add onions and cook until soft and golden. You can add a pinch of salt to speed up this process. 
  3. Moving the onions aside, add cumin seeds and let splutter/crackle.
  4. Add chopped tomatoes and tomato paste and cook until tomatoes are soft, stirring often. 
  5. Add ginger, garlic, and hot peppers in using (highly recommended). Stir well and cook for a couple of minutes. 
  6. Add curry leaves, turmeric, and masala. Stir well and cook until well combined. Add 1/2 cup of water and cook covered for 5 minutes or until all the spices are well combined, the tomatoes broken down, and the onions have broken down.
  7. Add shrimp, chopped cilantro and salt to taste. Stir well and cook uncovered on medium high heat for 5-10 minutes or until the shrimp is well coated with the spices and the curry/tarkari is on the dry side. You do not want to overcook the shrimp as it will turn rubbery so pay close to attention to ensure that the shrimp is cooked, but not overdone. It shouldn't take more than 10 minutes. 
  8. Serve hot with a side of your choice! I love to eat this with roti or with daal and rice! Enjoy!!! 

Jinga Ke Tarkari | Masala Shrimp | Dry Shrimp Curry

Monday, July 11, 2022



Corned/Tinned mutton is a family staple in many Fijian households. I remember eating it at least once every couple of months while growing up in Fiji. Now, its more of an indulgence but definitely a family favorite! I like to cook tin mutton in a few different, but when I am in a hurry, this is my go-to method. Its fast, easy, and so good! It makes a wonderful breakfast with some roti and lal cha! YUM!!!


Ingredients:

1 can (11.5 oz or 326 grams) tin mutton (I swear these used to be bigger!)

1.5 tablespoon oil 

1 cup onions, sliced

2 tablespoons crushed garlic

1 inch ginger, crushed

3-8 chili peppers (or to your liking)

1 sprig of curry leaves (optional but highly recommended) 

1 tablespoon tomato paste or 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes  

salt to taste


Method:

Heat oil in a non-stick ceramic pan over medium heat. 

Once oil is hot, add sliced onions and sauté until golden, approximately 2-3 minutes. 

Add ginger, garlic, hot peppers, and curry leaves and sauté for a minute.

Add tomato paste and sauté for 2-3 minutes. If using fresh/canned tomatoes, sauté until the mixture is slightly dry. 

Add the can of corned mutton and break up the chunks. Mix well. 

You can add salt at this point if you'd like, but note that corned mutton is already salty out of the can. I recommend waiting until the end to taste and adjust as necessary. Fry tin mutton to your liking. I like to cook it for 5-7 minutes or until its slightly crispy. 

Enjoy with hot roti or with daal and rice! 


Notes:

To reduce fat content of the tin mutton, you can put the unopened can of corned mutton in some hot water for 5-10 minutes to melt the fat. Then drain before cooking. 

Fiji Style Bhunjal Tin Mutton | Fry Corned Mutton

Sunday, July 3, 2022



 Ingredients:

  • 1.5 lb lamb cubed into 1 inch pieces (bone in or boneless)
  • 1 large onion sliced (about 2 cups)
  • 10 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 inch ginger, crushed 
  • hot chili peppers to taste, crushed
  • 4-6 shishito peppers, sliced (you can use any other mild pepper/bell pepper)
  • 2-3 dry chili peppers * (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoon light soy sauce (low sodium)
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce 
  • 2 tablespoon oil (any neutral oil is fine)
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala* (optional but recommended)
  • 1 tablespoon chili sauce* (optional but highly recommended)
  • salt to taste 
  • garlic chives/scallions/green onions to garnish 
  • water as needed 

Method: 

  1. Add oil into a pan or pot over medium heat.
  2. Add half of the sliced onions and sauté until golden brown. Lower heat if needed to ensure that onions are not burned. 
  3. Add shishito peppers (or any peppers you desire), dry chili peppers, crushed garlic, crushed ginger, and crushed chili peppers and sauté for 2 minutes. 
  4. Add lamb pieces keeping heat on medium high. Sauté for 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add dark soy sauce, light low sodium soy sauce, and oyster sauce. Mix well and cook covered on medium-low heat for 30-40 minutes or until your lamb is tender. Be sure to stir occasionally and add water if the lamb starts sticking to the pan. The amount of water varies on the lamb (cut/age/size etc.)
  6. Once lamb is cooked, add remaining onion slices, chili sauce, and the garam masala (if using). Taste for salt and add as needed. Stir well and turn off the stove. The remaining heat will cook the onions but the will still hold their shape. Garnish with chives if you'd like -- note** I haven't used cilantro as a garnish because it does change the taste of the dish. If you LOVE cilantro, you may add it, but I recommend garlic chives to add to the onion/garlic flavor profile. 
  7. Serve hot with rice, roti, or my personal favorite, dhal and rice! 

Fried Lamb in Soy Sauce Fiji Style | Lamb Stir Fry

Friday, January 21, 2022




Ingredients:
  • 1 large eggplant (choose a big variety like Italian or Black Beauty) 
  • 4-6 cloves of garlic 
  • 1 tomato 
  • Chili pepper to taste
  • sliced onions to taste
  • chopped cilantro to taste 
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste

Method: 
  1. Wash and dry eggplant. 
  2. Cut slits into eggplant and push one garlic clove into each piece.
  3. Roast eggplant over an open flame - you use use a gas stove or a open fire grill 
  4. Turn eggplant periodically to ensure that it is roasted evenly
  5. Once roasted, remove from flame
  6. Roast tomatoes and peppers on open flame if desired. 
  7. Once eggplant has cooled slightly, slice the charred skin into half and scoop out the pulp into a bowl. 
  8. Using a fork, potato masher, or your hands mash eggplant and garlic until a smooth paste is formed. 
  9. Peel charred tomato and peppers and add to your eggplants. You may chop them if you desire. Discard any stiff/hard pieces. 
  10. Add chopped cilantro and sliced onions and mash everything well. 
  11. Add salt and pepper to taste, mix well and serve with hot roti! 

Baigan Ke Chokha Fiji Style | Eggplant Chokha | Smoked Eggplant Dip

Saturday, January 15, 2022



If you love these sweet and crunchy "french fry sticks" as my daughter calls them, but have difficulty with the sugar syrup, then this recipe is for you. Not only is this route easier, but its a no-fail method that anyone can try! 

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 3 Tablespoon ghee (use vegan butter to make it vegan)
  • 3 Tablespoon powdered sugar/icing sugar 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom powder (ellaichi)
  • 1/2-1 cup of luke warm water
  • oil for frying
        Sugar Coating:
  • 3 Tablespoons powdered sugar (adjust to taste) 

Method:
  1. In a large bowl, mix flour and powdered sugar until well combined. 
  2. Add ghee 1 tablespoon at a time and rub into flour using your palms. The mix will easily clump together when pressed into a ball but will break apart easily too. 
  3. Add salt and spices to flour mixture and mix well.
  4. Slowly add water, a little at a time and make a stiff dough. Knead for few minutes and let it rest covered with a damp cloth/paper towel for 20 minutes.
  5. Divide the larger dough into 2 smaller loyahs (balls).
  6. Roll the dough with a rolling pin to 1/2 inch thickness and cut into thin strips to desired length (2-3 inches).
  7. Heat oil on medium heat and fry on medium heat for 5-10 minutes until fried to tan brown color. I raised my stove to high heat after 5 minutes to speed up the browning. Do not start off with high heat as it will brown too quickly but remain soft. Drain onto a cooling rack on a tray. 
  8. Transfer the lakdi mithai to a big bowl and dust with powdered sugar one tablespoon at a time.  Toss well to combine before adding more sugar if needed. You can taste to see when they are to your liking. 
  9. Let it cool completely before storing in an air tight container. 
Tips:
  • Do not use too much water when you start kneading the dough. This will ensure that your dough doesn't get too hard. 
  • Be sure to mix the ghee into the flour mix very well. This helps the lakdi mithai stay crispy and tender. 
  • The oil temperature must be medium hot when adding the dough to fry. The dough shouldn't rise up quickly when first added. 
  • Stir the ladki mithai occasionally while frying to ensure even browning. 
  • You can add white sesame seeds to the dough to add a different flavor profile. 


Fiji Style Ladki Mithai Without Paag - No Sugar Syrup Lakri Meethai | Lakdi Mithai | Lakri Mithai

Saturday, October 30, 2021


On a cold day, nothing beats a plate of hot bhajias with some cha (tea). Growing up, we had these as after school snacks from the ("gadi la") cart vendor, smothered in tamarind sauce. It was such a delightful treats, one that I clearly didn't start appreciating until moving away from Fiji. Even today, whenever I bite into these bhajias, I always remember those fond memories of my primary school days. Ahhh.. the "gadi la admi" (cart vendor guy) made childhood lovely!

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup gram flour/chickpea flour/besan
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour 
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric 
  • 1/2 teaspoon carmon seeds (ajwain)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds (jeera)
  • 1 cup finely sliced onions
  • 2 cups chopped spinach (measured after its cut)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro 
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, crushed 
  • chili pepper to taste 
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • water (enough to make a dropping batter consistency)
  • neutral-flavored oil for frying (I used canola)
Method:
  1. Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan on medium to high heat. We will be deep frying these. Be sure to add enough oil to the pan. 
  2. Dry roast carmon seeds and cumin seeds on medium heat for a few minutes to enhance their flavor 
  3. In a large bowl, add spinach, onions, and cilantro. Mix well. 
  4. Add in carmon seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric, and salt. Mix well making sure all the spices are well distributed. 
  5. Add in both chickpea flour and all purpose flour along with the baking powder. Combine well. 
  6. Add water gradually squeezing the batter/veggies with your hands until you the batter is at dropping consistency. The batter should be thick, yet slightly runny. 
  7. Once the oil is heated, carefully drop in batter into the oil. I like to make them golf ball size, but you can adjust to your liking. You may also drop heaping tablespoonfuls of batter into the hot oil. Try not to overcrowd the oil because it will result in greasy bhajias. Drop temperature to medium after 2-3 minutes to ensure the bhajias do not burn, and are well cooked. Fry until golden-brown. Drain the bhajias on a wire rack placed over a cookie sheet. 
  8. Repeat with the remainder of the batter. Serve the hot bhajias right away with Tamarind chutney, hot sauce, or any chutney of your choice. A cup of dood-la-cha (milky tea) is the perfect accompaniment.
Tips:
  1. Feel free to substitute the spinach for any quick-cooking greens. You can also add in any other quick-cooking vegetable of your choice. Grated potatoes are wonderful added in.
  2. Make sure to not over-crowd the pan – this will lower the temperature of the oil and you might end up with greasy bhajias
  3. Use a wire rack to drain your bhajias instead of paper towels– paper towel simply makes fried foods steam and get soggy. To ensure your bhajias stay crisp, drain them on a wire rack placed over a pan. This will allow the excess grease to drain without making them soggy.
  4. Don't try to make them all perfect sized/shaped. The rustic shapes of bhajias helps add texture (crispy bits).


Bhajia Fiji Style | How to Make Bhajia | Spinach Pakora | Crispy Fritters

Friday, October 29, 2021