Yesterday, a friend of mine who is in India, asked me whether I was happy here and do I see myself settling here. She is thinking of moving to the States, but loves India too much to ever think of settling anywhere else and wanted my take on the whole thing.

To be honest, if given a chance I would move to India in a heartbeat. Not to discard the lifestyle I have here, its great. I have great friends, without whom I don’t think I could have lasted as long as I did in this place and I would definitely miss the luxury of certain food items available here, especially when it comes to baking. I will aslo miss the TV shows that you get to see as soon as they premier instead of hoping and praying for the Indian channels to think that the show is worthy of broadcasting in India and then only getting to see it.

But that said, India has always suited me more. They say you always do better in your habitat and well, India is my habitat.


Even when I was in Moscow, even though I had a much busier life there, I literally craved India. So while Indians my age looked at places abroad for higher studies, I knew whatever I chose to do, I had to do in India.

Staying abroad was never in my plan.

I remember a friend of my granddad’s, who is a fortune teller, told my parents that I would get married to someone settled abroad. To that I would always think fortune tellers know crap. Well, guess who was proved wrong (by the way I still think fortune tellers know crap- the same fortune teller had told my mom that I would be a boy, and I am most definitely NOT). But then, fortunately for me V made it clear from the beginning that eventually he plans to move back to India, the only thing is I thought it would have happened by now.


Anyway, this ain’t bad either. 🙂

And food like this helps immensely.

These kebabs are just great. Not only they come together in a jiffy, they are succulent, juicy and oh so flavorful!

It was a task to keep my hands off them while taking the pictures for the blog. As soon as I managed some shots, I nibbled on five one after the other. And then some more a little later. And a few more after some time. I had so many that I am now feeling sick.

I have made this recipe plenty times and somehow forget where I originally saw it. I did modify it a bit , but it’s pretty close to the original. So if it’s yours I am sorry for not giving due credit!

I made these in a meatball shape, but you could make them in any kebab shape you like. I plan to use these meatballs in an indian based gravy and that’s why I chose the shape.

Sprinkled with some lemon juice and some chaat masala, these are great as appetizers. And since they come together so easily, bookmarking this recipe would be the best thing you do to yourself today.


Garam Masala Tuesdays: Mint kebabs
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: appetizer
Cuisine: Indian
Serves: depends on the size I got 30 meatballs
  • 1 packet of ground chicken (about 1-1.2 pounds)
  • 2 tbsp corn starch/ corn flour
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • a pinch baking soda
  • about 2 tsp oil
  • ½ cup finely chopped onions (to be put later)
  • 2-3 tbsp fresh mint, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger, grated
  • depending on how hot you want add green chillies ( I use 2 if I am serving these to foreigners, otherwise I use 4-5 and I also add a tsp of red chilli powder which you could skip depending on how hot you want them to be)
  • a pinch garam masala (I use a homemade one that I have for meats, I will post a recipe for it soon)
  • salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • oil to shallow fry
  1. Combine all the ingredients except for the onions and the oil required for frying. Allow the mix to rest for at least half an hour in the refrigerator. You can keep it covered overnight in the refrigerator as well.
  2. When ready, mix the onions in with a spoon.
  3. Divide the mixture into small handfuls and roll into desired kebab shape.
  4. Heat the oil in a skillet and cook the kebabs over low to medium heat for 10-15 minutes, turning them occasionally (so that all sides are cooked). (I always cook one- two and check the seasoning and if I feel anything is amiss make adjustments)
  5. Sprinkle with chaat masala and lemon juice and serve with sliced onions.
  1. You could also bake or grill these.




9 Thoughts on “Garam Masala Tuesdays: Mint kebabs

  1. These kebabs are making me drool at breakfast time 🙂 They looks real good…beautiful props and great clicks
    Shema George recently posted..Vishu Sadhya RecipesMy Profile

  2. Beautifully juicy kebabs!!!
    indugetscooking recently posted..Sausage BitesMy Profile

  3. Thank you so much. I love trying different amd unfamiliar recipes. I’m sorry you miss your Country. I know how that is. Just hink positive and good things here as there are many and your life will become happier.

  4. I really know what you mean about doing better in your native habitat – even though we lived overseas for decades, San Diego is still my habitat where I’m most comfortable. I’m glad you are in the U.S. and cooking Indian food and blogging about it, though, as I’ve learned so much from your experience here. Thanks for your posts!
    Donna Amis Davis recently posted..Tamilok – Crispy Fried Woodworm – Yum!My Profile

  5. How do I ground the chicken..sob sob…shalloooooooo

  6. I am a kebab lover…your recipe & pics looks so tempting ….will try out your recipe soon after the bird flue gets over in China

  7. Mark on 8 May, 2013 at 10:17 pm said:

    I understand Shumaila.. all too well. I’m not Indian- I’m a gora through and through- but I was raised in an Indian community. I was raised with Bharata Natyam, Ramayana, Indian food, Bollywood movies.. I’ve always said about myself, phir bhi dil hai Hindustani.. I’ve always felt very comfortable around Indian people, and frankly uncomfortable without them! My roommate in graduate school was an Indian medical student. He was a Bombay-born Gujarati Hindu, a devotee of Sai Baba of Shirdi. We sang beautiful bhajans, I ate all of his rasmalai LOL, he got me the good mangoes and said I should marry an Indian person. I know you are probably rolling your eyes and thinking, great another pagal angrezi obsessed with some romantic notion of India… I know India is not perfect and no country is. I also know a little bit of the circumstances that have somewhat contributed to the exile of many Indian professionals. Most of the kids I went to high school with were the American born children of people who left during Indira Gandhi’s regime of the 1970s.

    I’ve tried to read anything written in English about India, and I continue to do so. But this meandering does have an actual point, and a question for you, Shumaila. As an Indian living in the United States, what advice would you give to an American wanting to travel in/ live in India someday?

    • It was so nice reading your comment. I just think its commendable when anybody from a different culture embraces another culture so well 🙂

      Well, as for advice, I would warn the American that travelling to India can be overwhelming- the population, the poverty, the traffic, the blaring bollywood music, the noise, the dirt- everything will be and is overwhelming. In fact whenever I go back, it takes me time to adjust to everything. One is so protected in the US, so especially if you see poverty it kind of hits you hard. But well, maybe, I am just a little too sensitive to such things.
      You will definitely get a lot of attention too, especially since you are a gora. So get used to it. Most of the people will be nice to you, but still they will be many who will be nice and still try to fleece you. So just know that you need to bargain, but even if you don’t you will still get a good deal.
      Also, I am sure you are not one of those people who thinks India is full of snake charmers and elephant riders and cows on the street. Well, the latter is kind of true. But, I know many people who go to India thinking that and then they hit Delhi and are amazed how different it is.

      The food is lovely in India. But you need to slowly get used to it. Bottled water always, else you will surely get the famed Delhi belly. And also public restrooms are horrible, stinking, unhygienic. So always go to the bathroom before you leave your place/hotel.

      Also yes India is unsafe for women. But on this last trip of mine, during my Vipasana course I met so many international women travelers and all of them were traveling alone. This was the time when India was full of rape cases news. I asked one of them, who had come from Germany, how come after hearing all this rape news and warnings she wasn’t scared of traveling alone. And I loved what she had to say. She said that if she was to get raped, she could get raped in her country as well. But more than that, she realized that Indian men did not look at her weirdly if she was dressed in spaghetti straps and skirts. I guess Indian men accept foreigners and the way they dress because they see it as a part of their culture. I, on the other hand, have to be very careful as to how I dress if I travel to places other than the mall or a restaurant or if I choose public transport to travel in India.

      Hope this helps. If you do choose to travel to India, please let me know. I will see what I can do from my end 🙂

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