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Saturday, November 10, 2007

Away from home

Hi everyone

I am leaving for India on a long vacation. Will be back only this year end. I will try to blog during my stay in India or else will be able to post in only early next year.

WISH YOU ALL A VERY HAPPY AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Cashew Halwa

Ingredients
Milk - 4cups
Sugar - 1.5cups
Cashew paste - 1cup
Saffron - few strands
Ghee - 1/2cup or as per need

Method
1. Dissolve the saffron in very little milk. Keep aside.
1. Boil milk and when the quantity comes to half, add the cashew paste, mix well and then the sugar. Mix well adding ghee now and then. Once it is like a mass, pour the saffron milk. Mix and stir continously. Remove from fire when the mixture leaves the sides. Transfer to serving bowl and decorate with cashews.


This is my submission for WYF Dessert/Sweet hosted by Hima of SnackoRama.


Thursday, November 1, 2007

Deepavali - Festival of lights.

WISH YOU ALL A VERY HAPPY DEEPAVALI

Diwali is one of the most enchanting festivals of India. Deepavali is celebrated by South Indians in remembrance of Naragasura, a demon who was killed by Lord Krishna, who in his death bed wanted a boon that people must celebrate his death anniversary happily with colorful lights and this occasion also commemorates the return of Lord Rama with his holy consort and brother from a war in which he vanquished the demon Ravana. The people of Ayodhya gave a rousing welcome to the divine hero Rama by lighting oil lamps along the way leading to the city. Deepavali symbolises good over evil.

North Indians celebrate Diwali as a symbol of the Festival of Lights. People from business community start their venture on this auspicious date. Different parts of people in India celebrate the festival in their own traditional way.

Staying away from India, makes me a bit lethargic in celebrating the festivals, but i make it a point to celebrate so that my children will get to know about them. I often explain to them as to how i would celebrate the festival when i was in India with my parents. My sister and I would eagerly wait for our Deepavali purchases which would be followed by a sumptuous dinner. Back home the day before deepavali i used to go to my uncle's house to eat steaming hot bajji's. Then late in the night, we used to apply mehandi for our hands and legs. My mother will apply turmeric and kumkum to our new dresses and keep them before GOD. The next day we will get up early in the morning around 4am, and my mother will make us sit in a manai (wooden plank) kept on top of a beautifully drawn kolum. She will then give betel leaves with pakku and a pinch of banana fruit. After that she will keep nalanku on my feet. Nalanku is a mixture made from turmeric and sunnambu with little water. This will be applied around the foot edges. After that heated oil (with pepper, turmeric and curry leaves) would be applied on our head, legs, hands and face. After bath we would get our new dressess from our parents who would have taken their bath and worn their new dresses before we do. We used to be extremely excited about who would light the first cracker. As a family we would go out, greet everyone nearby and burst crackers. Every year we used to buy the latest cracker that was launched in the market. We will ensure that our loved and dear ones are near us when we crack that special one and feel proud after bursting it. Later after the sun rise, we used to pray GOD following which my mother used to give us the specially prepared legiyam(it has medicinal value good for digestion since our taste buds would be hogging on foods rich in oil, sugar and ghee) and then distribute the sweets and savouries to our neighbours. We then go to our grandparents house where all our family members (my aunts, uncles, cousins) unite to have a sumptuous breakfast. My grandparents would give us each a new dress. After that we will burst crackers pooled by everyone. We then visit other relatives. Evening we again burst crackers and watch our favourite channels in TV.

But staying in singapore, i prepare simple sweets and savouries without much trouble, getup around 6am, have oil bath, wear new dress and visit our friends place or call them home for breakfast. The kids these days who stay abroad definitely miss the fun and frolic.

I prepared muruku with the flour that my mother sent me from India, sweet n nut bites and cashew halwa.




Sweet n Nut Bites
Cashew Halwa

In Singapore, there is a place by name Little India, where you can find shops filled with latest designs of fashion wear, crackers, decorative items, deepams, flowers, and one can get an experience of having mehandi in the hands in just 3-5minutes. You can get any items there for the Deepavali celebrations. The roads will be lit with colorful decorative lights. Every year there will be a theme for the decorations. There is a make-shift bazaar in front of the famous Mustafa Center, which sells are the items needed for Deepavali. There are shops selling exclusive artificial jewellary. People throng to such shops to buy matching bangles, earrings and necklaces.




This is my submission for Jihva Special Editon : 2007 hosted by vee of Past, Present and Me.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Sweet N Nut Bites

Ingredients

Maida flour - 1cup
Cashew - 5nos
Badam - 5nos
Pista - 5nos
Cardamom - 1no
Sugar - 1/4cup
Milk - few drops
Oil - for frying

Method
1. In a blender add cashew, badam, pista, cardamom (remove skin), sugar and grind it into powder.
2. In a mixing bowl add maida flour and the above powder.
3. Mix it and make it into a tough dough like chapathi. Use few drops of milk if needed. Do not use water. Since nuts have oil in them, you would not need much milk. So be extra careful in making the dough.
4. Take a small dough and roll out and cut into diamond shapes using a knife. If you have patients then you can cut into different shapes.
5. Heat the oil in a kadai and deep fry the diamonds. Turn them on both sides (not immediately after dropping them in the oil) and remove from fire once they are golden brown and drain them in a tissue paper.

This is my submission for WYF-Dessert/Sweet hosted by Hima of SnackoRama.




Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Cumin-Pepper Rice

Cumin is a spice which is used in everyone's kitchen daily. It is used as seasoning in many dishes. Cumin is used as an ingredient in curry powder, rasam powder and for flavouring soups, cakes and bread. It is also used in the concoction made for digestive disorders. In ayurveda, cumin is considered invaluable for digestion. The aroma of the grounded cumin is stronger than the whole cumin seeds. The cumin seeds flavour is accentuated by toasting it. Zeera pani is a refreshing and appetising Indian drink made from cumin and tamarind water. Cumin together with caraway flavours Kummel, the famous German liquer. Cumin in the form, is used in chutneys, lassi, and in salad dressing or to sprinkle over prepared foods. Cumin tea, prepared by steeping cumin seeds in boiling water, can be drunk after a meal to aid digestion. Superstition during the Middle Ages cited that Cumin kept chickens and lovers from wandering. It was also believed that a happy life awaited the bride and groom who carried Cumin Seed throughout the wedding ceremony.

Jeera rice is a very popular Indian dish. It is generally eaten with a gravy type of side dish. During my morning walk today, i met my friend Dhanam and in our casual talk she told me that her kids love the jeera-pepper rice with plantain curry. Immediately i asked her the recipe and tried it out for lunch today. Since i didnt have plantain at home, i prepared lady's finger crispy fry.



JEERA-PEPPER RICE
Ingredients
Boiled Rice - 1cup
Ghee - 3tsp
Hing - little
Mustard - 1tsp
Pepper - 8-10nos
Jeera - 2tsp
Urad dhal split - 1tsp
Channa dhal - 1tsp
Curry leaves - few
Dry red chilli - 1no
Cashews - 6nos


Method
1. Take the rice in a mixing bowl.
2. In a blender grind jeera and pepper. Pour it on top of the rice.
3. In a heated kadai, add ghee, to it add hing, mustard, urad dhal, channa dhal and stir fry, once they are golden brown, remove from fire, add the curry leaves and then pour it on top of the jeera powder on the rice.
4.Add salt and mix thoroughly.
5.Fry cashews in a tsp of ghee and decorate it before serving.

Tomato Chutney

This chutney can be stored in refrigerator in an air tight container for few days. It would be good to have it with iddli, adai, dosai and freshly made curd rice.


Ingredients
Tomatoes - 4nos
Bell peper red or green - 1no
Ginger - small piece
Garlic - 1pod (optional)
Onion medium size - 1no
Tamarind paste - 1/4tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/2tsp
Red chilli powder - 1tsp
Hing - little
Mustard - 1tsp
Jeera - 1tsp
Curry leaves - few
Oil (sesame or olive) - little

Method
1. Wash and dice tomatoes into big pieces, cut pepper with seeds into big pieces.
2. In a blender add the tomatoes, pepper, ginger, garlic and tamarind paste. Grind it without adding water.
3. In a heated kadai, add oil and to it add hing, mustard, jeera and curry leaves. Once u hear the split noice, add the blended mixture into it.
4. Then add turmeric, red chilli powder and salt. Cover it with a lid as it will spill outside when it boils. Stir it now and then. Once all the water has evaporated, remove it from the fire.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Aval (poha)

When guests come home and you dont have enough time to prepare snacks for them, this recipe will be of help to you. I bet you can prepare this in just 10minutes time. This can be sent to children in their snack or tiffin box too.



Ingredients
Aval (Poha) - 2 cup
Onion - 1no
Ginger - little
Green chilli - 1-2nos
Potato - 1no
Carrot - 1/2no
Peas - 1/4cup
Cashew - 10nos
Groundut - 3tsp
Curry leaves - 10nos
Coriander leaves - little
Lemon juice - few drops
Hing - little
Mustard - 2tsp
Urad dhal split - 2tsp
Channa dhal - 2tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/4tsp
Salt - taste
Ghee - 1tsp
Oil - 5-6tsp


Method
1. Take the aval in a basin and wash with running water. Set it aside.
2. Wash and grate carrots and ginger. Wash and cut onions, green chilli and potatoes into very fine pieces.
3. Heat ghee in a kadai and add broken cashews and groundnuts. Fry and remove once they are golden brown.
4. Heat oil and add hing, mustard, dhals, turmeric powder, green chillies, ginger, curry leaves, onions and saute. Then add potatoes, peas and carrots. Add salt and stir. The above vegetables must be cooked in oil to get the taste, but i sprinkled water and covered with a lid for few minutes. Once the vegetables are cooked remove from fire.
5. Add the aval, little salt, lemon juice and stir thoroughly.
6. Transfer it into a serving bowl and decorate it with coriander leaves, fried cashews and groundnuts.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Bread and Vegetable Mix

This is a good morning tiffin box dish. Though adults would like to have it hot, the kids would love to take it with them to school.


Ingredients
Bread - 10slices
Onion - 2nos
Tomato - 2nos
Ginger (grated) - 1/4tsp
Bell pepper (any color) - 1/2no
Grean peas - little
Carrot (shredded) - little
Corriander leaves - little
Curry leaves - little
Green chilli - 1-2nos.
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Salt - a pinch
Sugar - a pinch
Hing - little
Mustard - 1/4tsp
Jeera - 1/4tsp
Urad dhal split - 1tsp
Channa dhal - 1tsp
Lemon juice - few drops
Chat powder - little
Oil - little

Method
1. Toast the bread in a toaster and cut them into small squares. This would avoid using too much of oil, if toasted in a tawa, though it would be tasty and have a different taste.
2. Cut onions, tomatoes and bell pepper and green chilli into small bits.
3. Heat the tawa, add oil and when heated, add on hing, mustard, dhals and fry till they are golden brown.
4. Add the onions and saute. Then add the green chilli, curry leaves and bell pepper. Add the turmeric powder and fry well.After two minutes add tomatoes. Stir and add peas. Add salt and sugar. Mix well. Add the shredded carrots. Remove from fire once the pepper is crunchy or till it is done - its your choice.
5. Add in the bread squares, chat powder, corriander leaves, lemon juice and toss well.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Baby corn fritters

Deep fried foods are bad for health. But children like any stuff that is deep fried. This recipe was given to me by my friend Pavitra. I tried it today and came out very well. My kids just finished it in no time.



Ingredients
Baby corn - 12-14nos
Corn flour - 2tsp
Besan flour - 1tsp
Ginger-garlic paste - 1/4tsp
Pepper powder - little
Red chilli powder - 1/4tsp
Tomato sauce - 1tsp
Soya sauce - 1/4tsp
Salt - taste
Oil - for frying
The above ingredients (pepper, red chilli, salt, ginger-garlic) can be added according to taste.


Method
1. Wash and cut the baby corns lengthwise. Make it thin strips.
2. In a mixing bowl add all the ingredients except the baby corns. Mix well.
3. Add the baby corns and toss them well. Keep it in the fridge for 1/2 hour.
4. Heat the kadai, and add enough oil for frying. Once the oil is hot drop the baby corns in them, turn them and remove once they are golden brown.

If you want to decorate it before serving, place the baby corns in a plate and to it add cut onions, corriander leaves, onion leaves, a pinch of chat powder and 2 drops of lemon juice.
Great, I bet you would love to have it to give your tastebuds a chance to enjoy.
I prepared the same batter mix and added bitterguard cut into semi circles. I deep fried them. Yummmm... they were very good. You can introduce this bitter vegetable to anyone who dislikes it. You can also try it with cauliflower. Cut the vegetable into medium size with the stalk and cook it for 5min. Then continue with the above procedure.



Monday, October 22, 2007

Potato Bread

A great snack for children. They would love to take it with them in their tiffin boxes to school. It is also very easy to make. If need be the potato filling can be prepared a day before and kept in the fridge.


Ingredients
Bread - 4 nos.
Potato - 2nos.
Turmeric powder - 1/4tsp
Red chilli powder - 1/4tsp or to taste
Dry Mango powder - 1/4tsp
Jeera powder - 1/4tsp
Corriander leaves - 3tsp (finely chopped)
Oil - little
Salt - taste.

Method
1. In a mixing bowl, add the potatoes, mash well.
2. Then add all the powders, corriander leaves and salt. Mix well.
3. Take a piece of bread, and take a spoon full of the potato filling and spread it over the bread evenly.
4. Heat the tawa, add a drop of oil and place the bread on it, filling facing top. Add a tsp of oil to the potato filling. Turn the bread and cook till both sides are golden brown.
If need be onions and a tsp of lemon juice can be added to the potato filling.

Kothu vegetable paratha

This recipe was told to me by my friend Janaki.


Ingredients

Paratha - 5nos.
Mixed vegetables - 2cups (shredded carrots, beans, cauliflower, peas, cabbage, baby corns split lengthwise)
Onion big - 1no.
Tomato - 2nos.
Ginger - small piece
Curry leaves - little
Corriander leaves - little
Hing - little
Sugar - 1tsp
Mustard - 1tsp
Jeera - 1tsp
Garam masala - 1tsp
Chilli powder - 1tsp
Turmeric powder - 1tsp
Corriander powder - 1/2tsp
Salt - to taste
Oil - little (5-6tsp)

Method
1. Wash and cut the vegetables. Cut the onion lengthwise. Dice the tomatoes. Grate the ginger.
2. Heat the tawa and cook the paratha's till both the sides are golden brown. Place all the parathas on top of each other and cut into small squares using a sharp knife.
3. Heat the kadai, add oil, then the hing, mustard and jeera. Once it splits add onions and sugar and fry for 2min. Then add tomatoes. Saute it. Add to it turmeric powder, chilli powder, corriander powder and garam masala powder. Once the oil in it seperates and the smell of the powders have disappeared add the vegetables, ginger, salt and sprinkle water and cover it. After 5-7min when the vegetables are cooked add the paratha pieces, curry leaves and mix well. Remove from fire.
4. If needed a tsp of lemon juice can be added and mixed well. Garnish with corriander leaves.
5. Serve hot with any type of raitha.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Navrathri

Navrathri or Dasara is celebrated for 9 nights followed by vijayadasami, when the preschoolers get initiated into academics with the blessings of Goddess Saraswati. Nava means nine and rathri means night.The festival is celebrated for nine days following the new moon day of the month of Purattasi (September – October). Usually dolls of deities are arranged in make-shift fixtures which resembles steps. The number of steps will be in odd numbers. People make traditional snack called sundal with one of the nava daniyams like Karamani, Kabuli channa, Kondakadalai, Green Payaru, Mochakotta, with a sweet to God offered as prasadam to guests who come home to see the dolls, known as Golu. The Golu arrangement is a sheer exercise of creativity which reminds us of the age old folk lore and puranas. In modern context it gives an opportunity for people to mingle with one another and relish the refreshments served. The guests invited are offered betal leaves (thambulam) which is mutually reciprocated during the visits of friends and relatives. On an auspicious note, exchange of thambulam spells harmony and good will for hindu families.

A snap of Thambulam offered to guests is as above.

Blackgram dhal (Black Kondakadalai)
Soak kondakadalai overnight. Next day pressure cook it with enough water and a little salt and allow 3 whistles. After it is cooled, drain the excess water. Place a kadai over heat, add little oil and add hing, mustard, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, dry mango powder, corriander powder and jeera powder. Saute and then add the cooked kondakadalai, a pinch of salt and curry leaves. Saute it for a minute or two. Add fresh corriander leaves and serve. Add the above ingredients according to the preference of your taste buds.

Carrot Halwa
Grate the carrot. Grind 3pods of cardamom with 1tsp of sugar after removing the outer skin of cardamom. Heat the kadai and add 2tsp of ghee, when hot add split cashews and then raisins. Keep them aside. Add 2tsp of ghee and add the grated carrots. Saute for few minutes. Then add milk, the carrots must be soaked in milk. Allow it to boil. Once it becomes a solid mass add the sugar and mix well, till the mixture leaves the sides. You can add 2-3tsp of ghee if needed. Remove from fire, add cardamom powder and then the fried cashews and raisins. Sugar can be added according to taste.

This is my submission for RCI Tamil Festival hosted by Viji of vcuisine and also for Jihva special edition 2007 hosted by Keep Trying - Past, Present and Me

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Oma (ajwain) Chapathi

Ingredients
Wheat flour - 1cup
Madia flour - 1 cup
Fresh corriander leaves finely chopped - 1/2 cup
Omam (ajwain) - 3tsp
Rice flour - 4tsp
Salt - to taste
Oil - 2tsp

Method
1. In a bowl add wheat and maida flour. To it add salt, omam, oil, corriander leaves. Add water little by little and make it into a dough. Cover it with a lid and set aside for 1hr.
2. Mix the dough well and divide it into small lemon size balls.
3. Take one ball and roll it in rice flour and flatten it into round shape. It should be made very thin.
4. Heat the tawa, put the chapathi on it and turn two sides and cook till golden brown on both sides.
5. Brush ghee on top of one side, if u like the taste of ghee or when you serve to children.

Peerkangai Kurma

Ingredients

Peerkangai - 1no
Onion - 2no
Tomato - 2nos
Mongdhal split - 1/4cup
Hing - little
Mustard - 2tsp
Jeera - 2tsp
Ginger - little
Garlic - 1no
Clove - 3nos
Cardamom - 2nos
Cinnamon stick - 1 small
Garam Masala - 1/4tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/4tsp
Red chilli powder - 1tsp or to taste
Besan flour - 1tsp
Corriander leaves - little
Lemon juice - 2tsp
Salt - to taste
Oil - 4tsp

Method
1. Peel and cut peerkankai into cubes. Cut onions and tomatoes into very tiny pieces.
2. Heat the pressure pan, add oil and put hing, mustard, jeera, cloves, split cardamoms, cinnamon fry for a minute and then add onions, fry and then add tomatoes, mix well.
3. Add turmeric powder, garam masala and red chilli powder. Mix well.
4. Add mongdhal split. Mix well. Add peerkankai, mix well. Add salt.
5. Add besan flour and pour water, just enough for the mixture to be soaked and mix thoroughly. Cover it and allow it to cook for 3 whistle. Cool it and then add lemon juice, mix well and serve with rice or chapathi garnished with corriander leaves.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Chakkarai Pongal

Ingredients

Rice - 1/2cup
Mongdhal split - 2tsp
Milk - 11/2cup
Jaggery - little more than 1/2cup
Saffron - few strands
Cashew - 10nos
Raisins - 2tsp
Clove - 1no
Cardamom - 2nos
Ghee - 1/4cup
Sugar - 2tsp

Method
1.Soak saffron in little milk. Keep aside.
2. Cook rice and dhal with milk. Remove and mash nicely. There should be no lumps. You can add little hot water in case it doesnt mash evenly.
3. Soak jaggery in little water, strain and remove the dirt.
4. In a heated kadai, add 2tsp of ghee, add clove and remove it out. To the same ghee add cashew and raisins, remove and keep it aside. Crush the clove into powder.
5. Add the jaggery water and allow it to boil nicely till you get a syrup consistency and then add the rice. Mix well, avoid forming lumps. Then add ghee little by little and mix thoroughly till the mixture leaves the sides.
6. Add the saffron, cashew, raisin, clove and powdered cardamom. Add 2tsp of sugar. Mix well and remove from fire.

Puratasi Saturday

Puratasi is a tamil calender month in which we pray to God Lord Venkatesa or Balaji in a very special way. On the saturday of the first week, we make maa vilakku, yellu rice and chakkaraipongal to offer HIM.

To make maa vilakku:
This method was told by my sister-in-law. It came out very well.
Take 1cup of rice flour and mix it with 1cup of sugar. In blender dry grind little sugar and 2pods of cardamom. Add it to the rice mixture and mix well. Break a coconut and take the water in a cup. By using this water little by little to the rice flour make it into a thick dough. Then shape it into vilakku with a beak in front. Keep kumkum to it and into the deep hole in the centre put ghee and thread. Light it as a lamp to God.

Yellu (Sesame Rice)


Ingredients

Sesame seeds - 2tsp
Dry red chilli - 1 or 2 nos
Hing - little
Mustard - 1tsp
Urad dhal - 1tsp
Channa dhal - 1tsp
Curry leaves - little
Rice - 1/4cup
Salt - to taste
Sesame oil - 2tsp


Method
1. Wash and cook rice. Allow it to cool.
2. Dry roast sesame seeds and red chilli.
3. In a blender dry grind redchilli, sesame seeds and salt. Add it to the rice.
4. In a heated kadai, add oil, then add mustard, hing, urad dhal, channa dhal and fry. Once it is golden brown add it to the rice. Add curry leaves and mix the rice well.

This is my submission for RCI Tamil Festival hosted by viji of Vcusine.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Vegetable Greenmong Kurma


Ingredients
Greenmong Dhal - 1/2cup
Mixed Vegetable - 2cup (carrots, beans, cauliflower, potato)
Tomatoes - 2nos
Onion - 2nos
Ginger - small piece
Garlic - 1 pod
Cloves - 3nos
Cinnamon - 2 sticks
Cardamom - 2nos
Turmeric Powder - 1/4tsp
Red chilli Powder - 1tsp (according to taste)
Garam Masala Powder - 1/4tsp
Corriander Powder
Besan flour - 2tsp
Corriander leaves - 2tsp
Salt - to taste
Oil - 3tsp
Butter - 2tsp
Method
1. Soak greenmong dhal overnight.
2. Cut onions lengthwise.
3. Put the pressure pan on the flame, add butter and oil, once it starts to melt add the cloves, cinnamon and split cardamons. Later add onions and saute for a while and then add tomatoes. Then add turmeric, red chilli, corriander and garam masala powders. Mix nicely and saute till the raw smell disappears or till the oil is seen on the sides of the pan.
4. Add mongdhal and mix thoroughly. Then add vegetables and mix.
5. Add salt to taste and pour water till the mixture is submerged.
6. Add the besan flour and mix well.
7. Close the pan with lid and allow 3 whistle to come and switch off. Allow it to cool.
8. Garnish with fresh corriander leaves and serve with rice or chapathi.

Pudina-Chickpea Rice


This dish is my daughter's favourite. Pudina is rich in iron. The leaves has got good cooling properties and are commonly used as anti-inflamatory agents. It is used in ayurvedic medicine preparations.

Ingredients

Basumati Rice - 2cups
Chickpea - 1/2cup
Mint leaves - 2cups
Green Chilli - 2nos
Ginger - small piece
Garlic - 1 pod
Onion big - 2nos.
Sombhu (perunjeeragam) - 2tsp
Cloves - 3nos
Cinnamon stick - small piece
Cardamom - 2nos
Salt - to taste
Oil - 2tsp
Ghee - 2tsp

Method
1. Soak chickpea overnight. If u forgot to do it, use potatoes cut into big cubes instead.
2. Wash rice and soak for 10-15min.
3. Grind pudina, ginger, garlic, green chilli, sombhu and cardamom with little water. If u want you can add little grated coconut also.
4. Cut onions lengthwise.
5. Put the pressure pan on the flame add ghee and oil, once hot add cloves, cinnamon sticks and add onions and fry till it looks glassy. Then add the grinded pudina mixture. Saute till the raw smell goes.
6. Add the chickpea and rice. Mix well. Add salt and water (41/4 cups). 4 cups for 2cups rice and 1/4 cup water for chickpea. Cover the lid and switch it off after 3 whistle.
If u dont have pressure pan, you cook the rice and chickpea seperately and mix everything in the kadai after frying the pudina mixture.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Vinayaka Chaturthi


Lord Vinayaka or Ganesha (above) is the son of Lord Shiva and Parvathi. It is beleived that if we pray to him, all our obstacles will be removed. So before we start the day or any work, we pray to him.


We celebrated Vinayaka Chaturthi today morning at 9.30am. I had made iddli, sambar, kozhakattai and channa sundal. We prayed God to get his blessings.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Pillayar Kozhakattai

Ingredients

Rice flour - 2cups
Salt - to taste
Oil - little
Coconut grated - 1cup
Jaggery - 1/2cup
Cardamom - 2nos
Rice flour - 1 or 2tsp
Ghee - 1tsp

Method
1. Mix rice flour, salt a pinch and 1tsp oil. Add water and make a dough (like chapathi dough). Cover it and set aside.
2. Add little water to jaggery and once it dissolves, strain it.
3. In a heated kadai, add the jaggery water and once it boils nicely with frothy bubbles add grated coconut and mix. Then add rice flour to it and mix till the mixture is without water bubbles. Finally add 1tsp ghee and powdered cardamom and switch off the flame. Allow this mixture to cool.

4. Keep 4-5tsp oil in a shallow plate, after dipping your fingers in it, take a small ball of rice flour, shape it into cups and stuff the coconut filling and close the edges at the top. After making all the kozhakattai, place them in a steaming pot and cook it for 12-14min. You can see the color change from pure white to a dull one. Remove from fire.

To get better results soak 1cup raw rice for 1/2hour and dry it out in a towel. Once it is semi-dry, you grind it and seive it. Using this flour if you make kozhakattai it will be very soft to eat.

Papaya (raw) Paal Kootu


Ingredients
Papaya raw - 1small
Milk - 250ml
Thur Dhal - 1/4cup
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Coconut - 1/4cup
Green chilli - 1no
Dry red chilli - 3nos.
Jeera - 1tsp
Curry leaves - 6nos.
Rice flour - 1tsp
Mustard - 1tsp
Urad dhal - 1tsp
Bengalgram dhal - 1tsp
Oil - little
Salt - to taste

Method
1. Cook thur dhal with little tumeric added to it.
2. Peel and dice papaya into cubes. Add a pinch of salt and boil it. Once cooked set aside.
3. Grind coconut, jeera, green and red chilli with little milk or water.
4. In a heavy bottom vessel, add the cooked papaya, milk, cooked dhal, grinded mixture, curry leaves and salt to taste. Mix rice flour with little water and pour this mixture also to the papaya-milk mixture. Allow it to boil. Mix thoroughly. After few bubbles switch off the flame.
5. Take a small pan and add oil, once heated add mustard seeds, urad dhal, bengalgram dhal and once they are golden brown add it to papaya-milk mixture.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Vegetable Pasta (Indian version)

Ingredients

Pasta - 1.1/2cup
Salt - to taste
Oil - 1tsp
Mixed vegetable (boiled) - 1cup (carrot, beans, cauliflower, peas, brocolli) or vegetables of your choice
Grated cheese - 1/2 cup
Tomato puree - 6oz (170gm)
(You can also make the above it by dropping 3 tomatoes in hot water and cover it with a lid for 5min. Remove skin and blend it into puree.)
Pepper powder - 1tsp
Italian classic herbs - 1tsp
Butter - 1tsp
Olives - 6nos.

Method
1. In a pan add pasta and pour water till it is immersed. Add a pinch or two of salt and a drop of oil. Allow it to boil. Once it is cooked, remove and wash it with running water. Set it aside.
2. In a heated kadai add butter, herbs and onions. Saute till the onions turn transparent or glass like.
3. Add boiled vegetables and saute for 2min. Then mix 1cup of water to the tomato puree and add it to the vegetables. Add salt and pepper to taste and allow it to boil. Once you see a bubble or two add the pasta and olives. Switch off the flame, immediately add cheese and mix well.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Cheese Chapathi

Ingredients

Wheat flour - 3cups
Salt - to taste
Oil - 1tsp
Grated cheese - 1/2 cup

Method :
1. Mix the flour, salt and oil with water and knead it thoroughly. Cover it and set aside for 1-2 hours.
2. Divide the dough into small rounds. Kneed it into round shape. Spread the cheese evenly.


3. Fold it into half and then again into half. Seal the edges and roll it out again slowly.
4. Heat the tawa, put the rolled out chapathi and try both sides till done.

It is advisable to roll out and make it immediately in the tawa, since cheese left outside will melt with time.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Krishna Jayanthi


Yesterday sept 4th, 2007 we celebrated krishna jayanthi at home in the evening at 7pm. My kids posing as Radha and Krishna. You know why we make Cheedai, because Kamsan used to grind his mouth "Nara Nara".

Monday, September 3, 2007

Vegetable Briyani

We had a get-together dinner on Sept. 2nd at the park near our house and I prepared this for about 15 people. It came out really well and everybody said it was very tasty.


Ingredients
Basumati rice - 2cups (400gm)
Mixed Vegetable - 4cups (carrots, beans, cauliflower, potato, peas)
Onion - 5nos
Tomatoes - 2nos
Oil - little
Ghee - 1tsp
Salt to taste

Masala
Yogurt (curd) - 3/4cup
Chilli powder - 4tsp
Ginger - a small piece
Garlic - 1 or 2 flakes
Mint leaves - a handful
Corriander leaves - little
Garam masala - 1.1/2tsp
Corriander-Cumin powder - 1.1/2tsp
Salt - to taste

Spices
Cardamom - 4nos
Cinnamon - 2 sticks
Cloves - 5nos
Peppercorns - 8nos
Big Jeera (sombhu) - 1tsp
Saffron - little

Garnish
Cashews - 10nos
Corriander leaves - little

Method
1. Soad rice for 1/2hour. In a kadai, add 1-2tsp oil and fry the rice, once done add the saffron and switch off.
2. Pour twice the amount of water, add little salt and cook the rice. Set aside to cool.
3. Add ginger, garlic, corriander leaves, mint in a blender and grind with little water.
4. Mix the above in curds, adding along with it garam masala, chilli powder, corriander-cumin powder, salt.
5. Pour the above mixture over the vegetables, mix thoroughly and marinate the vegetables for 1hour.
6. In a kadai, add 1tsp ghee and fry cashews split into 2. Keep aside.
7. Then add onions slit lengthwise and fry till golden brown, remove and set aside.
8. Add 2tsp oil and put all the spices except saffron. Fry and then add onions and tomatoes split lengthwise and fry for 3-4min. Then add the vegetable mix and cook till done.
9. Take a oven dish and place the rice and vegetable mix in layers alternatively and bake in an oven at 205degree for 12min. If you dont have an oven, just mix the rice and vegetables.
10. Garnish with cashews, golden onions and corriander leaves.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

MoreKuzhambhu




Ingredients
Buttermilk - 5cups
pumpkin boiled - 1/2 cup
turmeric powder - 1/4tsp

For tadka
Mustard - 1tsp
oil - 1tsp
Hing - little
curry leaves
dry red chilli - 1no

For grinding
Coconut - 2tsp
green chilli - 3nos
corriander seeds - 2tsp
bengalgram - 2tsp
urad dhal - 1tsp
thur dhal - 2tsp
raw rice - 2tsp

Method
1. Soak thur dhal and raw rice for 1/2hour.
2. In a kada, add 1tsp oil and fry corriander seeds, bengalgram, urad and green chilies. Allow it to cool.
3. Add coconut to the above and grind into a smooth paste in a blender adding little water.
4. In a vessel take the buttermilk, add the above grinded mixture, turmeric power, salt and mix well.
5. In a heated kadai, add little oil, put mustard, after it splits add curry leaves and hing. Pour it into the buttermilk. Mix the buttermilk well. Add the cooked pumpkin into it.
6. Put the buttermilk vessel on the flame and allow it to heat. Once u see the froth on top, switch off the flame.


Vegetable Dosai

Ingredients
Dosai Batter - 1cup
Onion - 2nos
tomatoes - 2nos
corriander leaves - little
grated cheese - 1/2cup
salt - little
oil - 1/4 cup


Method
1. Cut onions and tomatoes into small peices. Mix them with cheese, corriander leaves and salt.

2. Heat the tawa and pour a laddle full of batter and make a thick round dosa. Sprinkle the above mixture on top of it. Add 1/2 tsp of oil around it. Cover it with a lid and cook. Once u see the bubbles or hole on top of the dosa, remove from fire.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Mixed Vegetable Podi Rice





Ingredients
Boiled rice - 3cups
Boiled Mixed Vegetables - 1.1/2 cups
Corriander Seeds - 2tsp
Bengalgram - 3tsp
Whole Uraddhal gram - 3tsp
Dry Red Chilli - 5-6nos
Curry leaves - handful
Groundnuts - 1/4 cup
Mustard - 1tsp
Turmeric Powder - 1/4tsp
Hing - little
Ghee - 4tsp
Salt - to taste
Corriander leaves - to sprinkle

Method
1. Boil rice and set it aside to cool.
2. In a kadai, saute the mixed vegetable for 2min and then add little salt, tumeric powder and water. Cover it and cook.
3. In a kadai, dry roast corriander seeds, bengalgram and urad dhal, red chilli and curry leaves till the dhals are golden brown. Allow it to cool and then blend it into a powder.
4. Once everything is ready, heat a kadai, add 2tsp ghee put mustard, hing and groundnuts. Fry till nuts are brown and then the boiled vegetables. Saute it for 3min. Add salt and the powder. Mix nicely. Switch off the flame.
5. Add the boiled rice and mix gently. Add 1tsp of ghee and garnish with corriander leaves.







Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Sooji (Rava) Payasam






Ingredients

Sooji (Rava) - 1cup
Skimmed Milk - 5cups or Mix Fullcream Milk - 3cup and water 2cup
Jaggery - 2cups
Cardamom - 3nos.
Cashew - 6-7nos. (split lengthwise into two)
Dry Raisins - 8nos

Method
1. Heat kadai add ghee 1stp and add cashews. Once it is brown add dry raisins. Set aside.
2. Put jaggery in a vessel and 2 cups of water. Once it is dissolved strain it to remove dirts.
3. In the heated kadai add 1tsp ghee and fry sooji till golden fry. Add milk and stir constantly to avoid lumps. Once it is cooked, remove from fire.
4. Add jaggery water, stir and keep it back in flame. Add fried cashews and raisins. Remove from fire after you see one or two bubbles.







Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Coconut Podi

Ingredients

Coconut grated - 1cup
Hing - little
Urad dhal - 1/4cup
Dry red chilli - 5nos
salt to taste
oil - 2tsp

Method
1. Heat the kadai, add 2tsp oil and then add hing, dry red chilli, urad dhal and roast till golden brown.
2. Add the coconut to the above mix and fry till golden brown. Allow it to cool.
3. Put the mixture into blender, add salt and grind it fine.

Iddli-Dosa Milakai Podi




Ingredients

Whole Urad dhal - 2cups
Bengalgram dhal - 1cup
Hing - little
Dry red chilli - 2 cups
Curry leaves - 1 cup
Black sesame seeds (yellu) - 3tsp
salt - to taste (2-2.21/2 tsp approx.)
oil - little

Method
1. Dry roast sesame seeds. Keep aside.
2. Add 1tsp oil to a heated kadai and then add hing, urad dhal and bengalgram dhal. Roast them till golden brown. Set the ingredients aside.
3. Again add 1tsp oil to the heated kadai and put dry red chilli and curry leaves, fry till you hear the sound of dry leaves. Set aside
4. After all the ingredients have cooled, put the red chilli mixture, add salt and grind it. Then add dhal mixture in the blender and grind it coarsely. Then add sesame and grind.
5. Store this powder in a airtight container.

Yellow Pumpkin (Paranki) Molakootal




Ingredients

Yellow pumpkin - 1/2kg
Black Pepper - 2tsp
Dry red chilli - 1nos
Mustard - 1tsp
Urad dhal - 1tsp
Hing - little
Curry leaves - 6-7nos
Coconut - 1/4cup
oil - 2tsp
salt to taste

Method :
1. Peel, wash and dice yellow pumpkin into small cubes. Put them in a thick bottom vessel, add curshed black pepper, water and salt. Allow it to boil and once cooked remove from fire.
2. In a kadai add oil, put hing then mustard and urad dhal. Later add curry leaves and put coconut and fry till golden brown.
3. Add the above mixture to the cooked yellow pumpkin.

Monday, August 27, 2007

My Photo

Sunday, August 26, 2007

My Cute and Loving Kids



My daughter Madhuvanthi is 10yrs old and studying in primary 4th class. My son Saimadhav is 3.3yrs old and is going to playschool.

Party with my Friends


I always meet my friends everyday evening at the nearby park. While our children play, we all chit chat keeping an eye on them. I have invited them home for a get together. We had a great time on that day. I had made kaju-badam burfi, masala vadai with mint chutney and dhokla with readymade gits mix. After eating we all had ginger masala teal. We take turns and meet at everybodys house once in while just like that. Its great to be with friends, I just enjoy it !!!. In the photo my kids are with my friends and their kids. From left the first is Pavithra, my daughter madhu, shirley - dhruv, Reema - rishi, Janaki - maha and my son saimadhav.

Coconut rice and Potato Fry



Coconut Rice

My daughter's favourite dish. I occasionally prepare it at home since this receipe involves frying of coconut which is bad for health (cholesterol). For tadka using coconut oil will give the exact taste but i have used olive oil.




Ingredients:
coconut grated - 1 cup
boiled rice - 2 cup

for tadka
coconut oil or olive oil - 3tsp
mustard - 1tsp
urad dhal - 1 tsp
channa dhal - 2 tsp
hing - little
green chilli - 1 to 2 (depending on your taste)
curry leaves - 6 to 7
cashew - 6
salt to taste

Method
1. keep a kadai on a low flame. Add oil and put mustard, once you hear the crackling noice then add all the tadka ingredients and fry till golden brown. Break the cashew into pieces before adding them.
2. Then add grated coconut and fry till golden brown.
3. Allow to cool for sometime. The cooked rice must also be cooled.
4. Add the rice to the coconut mixture.
5. Finally add salt and mix thoroughly.


Potato Fry

Ingredients
Big potatoes - 4

for tadka
oil - 4 to 5 tsp
mustard - 1tsp
jeera - 1tsp
curry leaves - 6
hing - little
turmeric powder - 1/4tsp
red chilli powder - 3/4tsp or to your taste
dried mango powder - 1/4tsp
corriander powder - 1/4tsp
salt to taste

Method
1. Wash, peel the potatoes and dice it into cubes. Put it into a vessel containing water to avoid oxidation.
2. Keep kadai on the flame and add oil. Then add mustard, when it splits add hing, jeera and curry leaves.
3. Then add potatoes, mix well. Add to it turmeric powder, red chilli powder, corriander powder and dry mango powder. Add salt and cover it. Keep the flame slow. Toss it now and then. Prick the potatoes and see whether they are done. For want of time u can also pressure cook the potatoes first and then do the above procedure, but the taste will be definetly different.