Chef Maneet Chauhan was born and raised in India. It was there that her love of food was born as well.
As a young girl she would eat dinner at home, then head to a neighbor's house and eat there. But Maneet Chahan wouldn't just eat -- she would head to the kitchen and ask the cooks about the ingredients they were using. This curiosity and love of food has served her well during her career.
Chauhan is now the executive chef and co-owner of Chauhan Ale & Masala House in Nashville, where globally-influenced Indian cuisine is served, alongside their own Indian spice-infused microbrews. She is a regular judge of The Food Network's hit show, "Chopped," as well as a "James Beard Award of Excellence" winner.
Chauhan joined "CBS This Morning: Saturday" to discuss her first book, "Flavors of My World: A Culinary Tour Through 25 Countries" and share some of her recipes.
Here's how to make some of her signature dishes:Tilwala chili crab, beet salad with mustard yogurt pachadi, bolinhos de arroz tikki, sarson saag paneer spanakopita and limoncello rose.
Tilwala Chili Crab
1 Dungeness crab (about 2 lb size)
1 tbsp of sugar
2 tbsp of tamarind concentrate
Salt to taste
2 tbsp of peanut oil
1/4 cup of water
4 scallions, sliced thin
1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 serrano, chopped
1 tbsp toasted sesame seed
2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro leaves, plus more for garnish
8 dried red chilies (soaked in hot water and deseeded)
6 cloves of garlic
1 inch of fresh ginger
1/4 cup tomato ketchup
½ cup roasted unsalted peanuts
¼ cup toasted sesame seed
2 tbsp hot chili paste
2 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tbsp dark soy sauce
1. Clean the crab and chop it into pieces.
2. Grind all the ingredients for the spice paste to a smooth paste in a food processor. Make sure that the spice paste is finely blended.
3. Heat up your wok and add cooking oil. Add scallions, ginger, garlic and serrano chili.
4. Stir-fry the spice paste until fragrant. Add the crab and 1/4 cup of water and do a quick stir. Cover the wok with its cover for 3 minutes
5. Add in sugar, tamarind juice, a little salt to taste and continue stirring for about 2 minutes or until all crab pieces turned red.
6. Serve garnished with chopped cilantro and sesame seed.
Beet Salad with Mustard Yogurt Pachadi
Assorted beets 2 lbs
Red wine vinegar ½ cup, per pot
Salt 2 tbsp.
Coconut oil 2 tbsp.
Coconut, grated ¼ cup
Curry leaves 5 leaves
Mustard seeds ¼ tsp
5 Indian green chillies, chopped
Asafoetida 1/2 tsp
Yogurt 2 cups
Salt 2 tbs
EVOO 2 tbs
Sea salt as per taste
Black pepper as per taste
Toasted cumin pinch
Balsamic vinegar 1 tbs
1. In a large pot, cook the beets in water with the red wine vinegar and salt until they are cooked through. Note: Cook different colors separately, as the deep red color of the red beets will stain the colors of other beets.
2. Next, drain the liquid and immediately transfer the beets into mixing bowls and wrap in plastic. Then, when the beets are still warm, use paper towels or a kitchen towel to remove the skin off the beets. Note-keep the colored beets separated from lighter colored. Cut the beets in small oblique cuts.
3. In a small sauté pan, heat the coconut oil and then add mustard seeds and curry leaves, till they sputter. Sprinkle asafoetida and toast till aromatic.
4. Add the grated coconut to the pan and toast. Add this mixture into the yogurt and cool. Remove the curry leaves and reserve.
5. For pick-up, dress the beets separately with balsamic vinegar, EVOO, sea salt and black pepper.
6. Arrange the mixture on a plate and dollops of yogurt and sprinkle with toasted cumin powder and micro herbs.
Bolinhos de Arroz Tikki
1 red onion, finely chopped
1 serrano, seeded minced
2 tbsp chopped cilantro
1 clove garlic, minced
2 large boiled potatoes
1 tsp salt
1/4th tsp ground black pepper
1 tbsp milk
1 cup cooked basmati rice
Oil for pan frying
2/3 cup green peas - frozen peas defrosted
½ tbsp scrapped and minced ginger
¼ tsp chaat masala
¼ tsp salt red chili powder to taste
1 tsp coarsely ground dry-roasted cumin seeds
1 tsp chaat masala
1. Roughly mash the peas using a spoon or a fork. Add all the stuffing ingredients except oil and mash briefly.
2. Peel the potatoes and mash them. Add the rest of the ingredients. Mix well.
3. Take each portion of potato rice mixture and make a ball.
4. Gently flatten each ball into a round patty of about 1/2-inch thick and place a portion of stuffing in the center and fold the edges together very finely so that mixture does not come out.
5. Now very gently flatten it into a 2-inch patty. Repeat the procedure for all pieces.
6. Heat oil to come half way in a non-stick pan over a low heat to 350 degree. Slip in the patties, not too many at a time, and pan-fry on both sides till crisp golden brown, adding oil if required, on a very low heat. Drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with chaat masala.
7. Serve hot.
Sarson Saag Paneer Spanakopita
1 lb spinach washed and chopped fine (1/2 kg)
1 lb mustard greens washed and chopped fine (1/2 kg)
1/2 lb frozen fenugreek leaves (1/4 kg)
2 serrano chillies, thinly slices
1 tbsp grated ginger
1 tbsp grated garlic
Salt to taste
2-3 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)
1 large onion chopped
1 tsp garam masala powder
1 tbsp Bengal gram flour/ maize flour
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 cup grated paneer
1 cup ricotta or cottage cheese
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup olive oil
1 lb. Phyllo pastry sheets (1/2 kg)
1. Mix the greens, green chilies and salt to taste and boil in 1 cup of water till cooked, in a covered pot.
2. Puree the greens mix well to make a coarse paste. Drain and squeeze out the water.
3. Dry roast the Bengal gram till the raw smell disappears.
4. Heat the ghee on a medium flame. Add the chopped onion and sauté till pale golden.
5. Add ginger, garlic, garam masala and gram flour.
6. Add the greens mix to this and stir till blended. Remove and set the spinach aside to cool.
7. In a large mixing bowl, combine the grated paneer, and ricotta cheese. Add the cooled spinach mixture and mix until combined.
8. Combine the melted butter with the olive oil in a bowl. Using a pastry brush, lightly grease a 9 x 12 rectangular pans (or use your favorite pan).
9. Carefully remove the phyllo roll from the plastic sleeve. Most packages come in 12 x 18 inch sheets when opened fully. Using a scissor or sharp knife, cut the sheets in half to make two stacks of 9x12 inch sheets. To prevent drying, cover one stack with wax paper and a damp paper towel while working with the other.
10. Layer about 10 sheets on the bottom of the pan making sure to brush each sheet with the butter/olive oil mixture. Add the spinach mixture in an even layer and press with a spatula to flatten.
11. Layer another 10 sheets on top of the spinach mixture making sure to brush well with butter/olive oil mixture. Before baking, score the top layer of phyllo (making sure not to puncture filling layer) to enable easier cutting of pieces later.
12. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven until deep golden brown for approximately 20 to 25 minutes.
Bapa Doi Pots de Crème
2 cups heavy cream
2 vanilla beans
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup Greek yogurt
½ cup condensed milk
½ tsp green cardamom powder
Fresh pomegranate seeds
Finely sliced pistachios
1. Heat oven to 300 degrees. Pour cream into small saucepan. Split vanilla beans in half lengthwise and scrape seeds into cream. Put pod in cream, too. Heat cream until steam rises. Cover pan, turn off heat and let steep for 10 to 15 minutes.
2. Beat yolks and sugar together until light. Pour about a quarter of the cream (remove vanilla bean pod) into this mixture, and then pour sugar-egg mixture into cream and stir.
3. Mix condensed milk, yogurt and cardamom powder. Fold with above mixture.
4. Pour mixture into 6-ounce ramekins and place ramekins in a baking dish; fill dish with water halfway up the side of dishes. Cover with foil.
5. Bake 30 to 45 minutes or until center is barely set. Chill, then serve, sprinkled with pomegranate seeds and pistachios.
1 oz limoncello (30ml)
½ oz Campari (15ml)
2 tsp rose syrup
Pinch green cardamom powder
3 oz soda (45ml)
Organic red rose petals
In a cocktail shaker over ice pour the limoncello, rose syrup and cardamom powder. Shake well. Pour in a tall glass garnished with an organic rose petal.