Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Kitchen Khiladi 2015 - Cancer Institute Foundation

Cooking Competition and me? I am myself surprised that I participated in cooking competition last weekend (Oct 3rd). I came to know about this event when we visited Sunnyvale Hindu Temple on Ganesh Chaturthi. The first look of the flyer immediately got both of us (Manoj and me) excited to participate in this competition. This was an innovative way of Cancer Institute Foundation to raise funds and support Cancer Institute in all aspects of cancer treatment and research. For more information read here.

Although, I have never been into cooking and all (you probably know this if you know me as Jaya and not as Dhriti) but cooking for a good cause is what attracted us. Recently, Manoj and I have been thinking of ways to give back to the society, ways to help people in need, ways to help people who are putting in efforts to do something really big and this very well fitted into that bucket. 

But the challenge was cooking and that too with aroma, taste, nutrition and also with a great presentation! On the top of this, the main rule of this competition was to use TURNIP as the main ingredient. The first thing I did when I came to know this rule was to google and make sure what Turnip is. It is called 'Ghogdu' in Sindhi. In Hindi, people call it 'Shalgam'. 

And then I became aware of the health benefits of Turnip. Here are some very interesting facts about Turnip:
1. Turnip is a bulbous root with a creamy white color and a purple top where it has been exposed to the sun.
2. Turnip is a powerhouse of nutrients with a very low amount of calories.
3. Turnips are very good source of anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber.
4. Turnip greens compose of many minerals and vitamins several times more than that in the roots. The greens are very good source of antioxidants such as vitamin A, vitamin C, carotenoid, xanthin, and lutein. Further, the leafy-tops are an excellent source of vitamin K.
5. Turnip also has anti-cancer properties. Studies show that consumption of Turnip may help to reduce your risk of colorectal and lung cancer. 

On registering for this event, I started asking everyone around me for ideas on what I can cook with turnip. Two of my other friends - Richa and Namita were also excited after knowing about this contest. After a couple of days of brainstorming we finally decided to make Shalgam pav-bhaji (main course), Ghazal-e-Shalgam (salad) and Sweet-o-rosie (desert) and all made up of Turnip. I want to thank Richa and Namita for bringing in so much enthusiasm and creativity for the cooking competition and of course the creative names of all the dishes :) Although we didn't win, it was an incredible experience for all of us. I am definitely going again next year! 


Name of the dish: Turnip Pav Bhaji 

Serving size: 5 people

Main Ingredients:
Turnips 5
Onion 1 
Tomato 2
Egg plant 1 medium sized
Carrots 2
Peas - 1 cups
Gobhi 1/2 flower
Dudhi 1/2 - small portion
Pavbhaji masala
Red chilli whole
Ginger 1/2 inch
garlic 3-4
green chili 1-2

1/2 onion finely cut
2 green chillies 

Method to make Bhaji :

Take ginger, garlic and chill from main ingredients and make ginger garlic chili paste.
Take tomatoes and make puree.
Cut all other veggies into small cubes and wash them.

Put cooker on a stove and heat butter + little oil and add some jeera and let it splatter for few seconds.  Add ginger-garlic chili paste and let it cook for about 30 seconds or till you smell the aroma of ginger garlic. Then add chopped onions. Let it cook till it becomes pinkish brown. Add tomato puree and salt let it cook for 2-4 minutes. Then add all the veggies and saute for a few minutes.  Add 1/2 glass water and close the lid of the cooker and let it whistle for 6-8 times.  Open the cooker after 10 minutes and mash the veggies. 

Take a big frying pan and add oil and when it heats up add pav bhaji masala and cook for few seconds. Add the mashed veggies to this. Let it simmer for 10 minutes so that the veggies soak the masala. Squeeze one lemon and add some cut cilantro. 

Serve this hot with pav and garnish this with cilantro, chopped onions and sev.

Bread bowl Turnip bhaji!


  1. Grate the turnip nicely
  2. Put grated turnip in ice cold water for 15 minutes
  3. Squeeze out water from turnip
  4. Make a mixture of ginger, asafoetida, pepper, red chilli powder and add salt to taste
  5. Mix the turnip in the above mixture
  6. Take a container, put some oil and deep fry the mixture in whatever shape you want
  7. After frying let the pieces cool down to room temperature.
  8. Cut the cabbage into boat shape and put every piece of fried turnip on top of it
  9. Take cubes of cheese and fry them slightly
  10. Garnish the turnip boat with the cheese and mayonnaise


  1. Take one cup of flour (maida) and make the dough
  2. Keep it aside for 10 minutes
  3. Take one pan, put some water, honey and cinnamon and let it boil on medium flame for 10-15 mins
  4. Chop the turnip in half moon shape and put every piece in the the above pan and let it boil for 10 more minutes
  5. Take all the pieces out from water, drain out the water and keep the pieces aside
  6. Now make a fine rectangular strip using the dough made at Step 1
  7. Use the rectangular strip and the pieces kept in step 5 to make the rose flower shape
  8. Take one pan, put oil and fry the rose petals for 5-7 mins on medium flames
  9. Garnish the rose petals with butter and honey, keep them aside
  10. Take another pan, mix water, honey and cinnamon and put rose petals in it.

Few pictures from the event:

Presentation at the event! Front view

Our presentation at the event! Back view :)

Temptations Team at work!

All excited before judges start tasting the dishes ;)

Spreading some awareness!

Look who came to cheer us up!

Winners on stage!

Some posing! post event..
Just some more posing.. 

No comments:

Post a Comment