Ramadan Recipes: Chicken Box Patties

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Ramadan is finally upon us, and with it, the culinary experiences we typically associate with this holy month. The activity in and around the kitchen increases significantly, owing to the maddening aromas emanating from the kitchen right around iftaar (time to break the fast). Family members who usually don’t even bother with the food-prep start hovering around to see what’s on the menu.

I belong to a family of food-lovers. Some of my fondest childhood memories are of my mother planning her iftaar menu weeks before Ramadan. I still remember how she wrote everything on a wall calendar; everything from appetizers to desserts. She made rainbow-colored jelly eggs and lip-smacking kukray (D-shaped samosas with mung daal and minced meat filling),  always on the hunt for new recipes to try. Watching her make those things was the highlight of my day and I have only her to thank for my culinary passion.

The Ramadan dastarkhwan (floor mats/carpets on which food is served) is empty without a selection of appetizers. I know of some families who absolutely positively need to have samosas and pakoras at iftaar, whereas others try different things. Luckily, I belong to the latter group. For me, an appetizer is the most important course, as it is the first thing you attack after breaking the fast. Thinking about first impressions, it can make or break your entire dining experience.

This Ramadan, I shall be sharing with you some appetizers handed down to me and others acquired along the way. The first entrant in this series is Box Patties. These perfect squares, created using samosa strips, are filled with a savory shredded chicken mixture that instantly satiates your spice cravings.

Prep time: 35 minutes for the filling and the box patties + 4 minutes for frying (per batch)

Yields: 18-20 patties

Serving size: 2 patties per person

Ingredients

  • 250 grams chicken breast
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon green chili paste
  • 1 tsp salt (for chicken)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 medium potato (boiled and diced)
  • 1 medium green bell pepper (capsicum – diced)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoon all-purpose flour (stirred in with 1 tablespoon water – for filling)
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (for filling)
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (for paste)
  • 1 cup water
  • 40-50 samosa pastry strips

Method

  1. Add chicken, ginger paste, garlic paste, green chili paste, salt (for chicken) and water to a pot and cook it till the chicken is tender and the water has dried up
  2. Once the chicken is cool enough to handle, shred it and keep it aside
  3. Heat butter in a pan and add the green bell peppers to it; stir-fry for 1 minute
  4. Add soy sauce, salt (for filling), black pepper and red chili flakes to the capsicum and stir for a minute
  5. Add potatoes and the shredded chicken and mix it well
  6. Finally, add the flour and water mixture to the chicken; mix it immediately to prevent the flour from turning the filling too sticky
  7. Cook for a minute before turning the stove off
  8. In a bowl, mix the flour (for paste) in water; microwave for 40-50 seconds to get a thick glue-like consistency
  9. Fold the box patties as instructed in the video
  10. Deep fry in hot oil till the patties are crisp and golden-brown
  11. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce and enjoy!

Note: Ramadan is an ideal time to get in touch with your spiritual self, but sometimes, we just get too fixated on food and what to make for iftaar. I prefer making these appetizers in a larger batch and freezing them; they can be used for up to 15 days. This will give you plenty of time to reflect on yourself and significantly lessen your kitchen workload.

Please remember me in your prayers!

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Chicken and Vegetable Patties

Puff Pastry is very versatile and is used to make sweet and salty biscuits, patties and pies. Popularized as 24×7 snacks, 70% of the people I bump into the bakery come in there to by at least one puff-based item. My wife and I tried making these patties at home for a friend’s get together and they turned out real nice, just like the ones sold in the bakery. For some people, making the puff can be quite a chore since it requires a lot of kneading and rolling, so it’s better if you get some (uncooked) from your local baker. If you still wish, I will post the recipe for you.

Vegetable Patties
Vegetable Patties

Ingredients

  • 3 medium Potatoes (boiled)
  • 1/2 tsp Blackseeds (kalonji)
  • 2 tbsp Peas (boiled)
  • 1 medium Onion (thinly chopped)
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder (haldi)
  • 8-10 Mint leaves
  • 5-6 Coriander leaf stalks
  • 4-5 Green Chilies
  • 1/4 tsp Coriander seeds (coarsely chopped)
  • 1/4 tsp Red Chilies (coarsely chopped)
  • 1/4 tsp Cumin (zeera)
  • 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 Egg

Method

  1. Heat oil in a pan and add the chopped onion to it; fry the onion until translucent – don’t let it change color
  2. Now add Kalonji, Turmeric Powder, Coriander leaves, Mint leaves, Green Chilies, Coriander seeds, Red Chilies, and Cumin seeds to the frying onion
  3. After about a minute, add little chunks of the boiled Potatoes and the peas to the mixture and cook until everything is properly mixed
  4. Add Lemon juice to the mixture and take it off the flame – let it cool before making the patties
  5. For making the patties, roll the puff to about 1/8 inch thickness and cut in square pieces
  6. Fill the center of the square with some filling
  7. Beat egg and apply a little along all the sides of the square using a pastry brush
  8. Fold the diagonal sides to make a triangle and press along the edges
  9. Brush a little egg on the top of the patty
  10. Put all patties in a pre-heated oven at 350 °C for about 20 minutes or until nice and orange

Chicken Patties

Chicken Patties

Ingredients

  • 1 Chicken breast
  • 5 Green Chilies (thinly chopped)
  • 4-5 medium Onions (cut into rings)
  • 4 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 1/3 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp MSG (Monosodium glutamate – Ajinomoto)
  • 1 1/2 tsp Corn Flour
  • 4-5 tbsp Oil
  • 1 Egg
  • Salt to taste

Method

  1. Boil Chicken Breast in water with 2 thinly chopped Green Chilies and some salt
  2. Once boiled, take out the chicken, shred it and keep it aside
  3. Put Oil in a pan and saute the onions until translucent; don’t let it change color
  4. Add to the onions, Soy Sauce, Black Pepper, MSG, the remaining Green Chilies and some Salt
  5. Now mix the shredded chicken to the onions
  6. Finally, sprinkle the corn flour to give it a creamy texture (just like the bakery filling)
  7. For making the patty, roll out the puff pastry to a 1/8 inch thickness
  8. Using a cookie cutter, cut the pastry in circular shape (3-inch diameter)
  9. Take one pastry circle, put the mixture in the center, and cover it up with another pastry circle
  10. Firmly press down the edges and apply egg on top of the patty
  11. Put all patties in a pre-heated oven at 350 °C for about 20 minutes or until nice and orange

These patties stay good for a day. If you wish, you can keep the leftovers in an airtight container and in the refrigerator. Microwave to serve.

Happy eating! 😀
Yousuf

Vegetable Patties