Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Palak Paneer

  • Ghee/Oil - 2 tablespoon
  • Palak - 5 medium bunches
  • Onion - 1 medium size
  • Green chillies - 2
  • Tomato - 1 medium size
  • Cloves - 2
  • Cinnamon - one inch stick
  • ginger-garlic paste - 1 teaspoon
  • salt to taste
  • Dhania powder - 1 teaspoon
  • jeera - 1 teaspoon
  • turmeric powder - a pinch
  • Pepper corns - 3
  • Cashew - 5
  • kasakasa - 1/2 teaspoon
  • garam masala - 1 teaspoon
  • lemon juice - 2 tablespoon
  • sugar - 1 teaspoon
  • curd - 1 tablespoon
  • kasuri methi - 1 tablespoon
  • Paneer - 200 grams,cut into cubes
  • Wash the palak in running water 2 to 3 times and cook for 3 min in little hot water.The palak will shrink.
  • Drain the excess water and set aside to cool.
  • Puree the palak using a blender.
  • Soak kasakasa and cashew in hot water for 10 min.
  • Heat a kadai,add 1 tablespoon of ghee,whole spices,chopped onion,ginger-garlic paste,green chillies,pepper corns and saute well till onions become transparent.Add the chopped tomatoes and curd .Cook for a min.
  • Set aside to cool.
  • Grind the cooked masala along with kasakasa and cashews into a coarse paste.
  • Heat the kadai,add 1 tablespoon of ghee and jeera.
  • When it splutters,add the ground paste and cook for 3 sec.The masala flavour comes out at this stage.Add the pureed palak,turmeric powder,salt,dhania powder,garam masala and cook for 3 to 4 min.
  • Add paneer cubes into it and cook covered for 2 min .If the consistency is slightly thick,you can stop cooking or cook for some more time till you get a slightly thick gravy.
  • Switch off and add crushed kasuri methi.Transfer to the serving bowl and add lemon juice.
  • Note:
  • Always do not pour lemon juice when the dish is very hot.It gives a bitter taste.
  • If you get frozen paneer,soak them for 10 min in warm water to make it soft.
Serve with hot rotis.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Idichakkai thoran

You would most likely find at least one Jackfruit tree in most homes in Kerala and when in season the fruit is used in various ways to make several interesting dishes, both sweet and savoury.
Idichakka thoran is one such popular dish in which tender, young, green jackfruit is cooked, then shredded and stir fried with coconut, green chillies and is usually served as a side dish with rice.

This recipe serves two.

  • Idichakai - 500 grams
  • coconut oil - 3 tablespoon
  • green chillies - 4 to 5
  • coconut - 4 tablespoon
  • curry levaes - few
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tablespoon
  • Urad dal - 1 tablespoon
  • asfoetida - a pinch
  • red chilli - 1
  • turmeric powder- a pinch
  • salt to taste
  • Remove the skin and slice the jackfruit into tiny strands.As the fruit is tender,you can even use the seed inside as it will be very soft.Its a messy and sticky process.So apply little coconut oil on your palms and then start the process.
  • Pressure cook the jackfruit strands with little water,turmeric powder and salt.The water level should be such that the strands are just immersed in water.Just a whistle on high flame would be sufficient.Do not over cook .
  • After cooking,strain the excess water from the strands.
  • Grind shredded coconut and green chillies in a mixer.Just a pulse would do.
  • Heat a kadai,add 2 tablespoon of coconut oil.
  • When its hot,add mustard seeds and asfoetida.
  • When it splutters ,add urad dal and curry leaves.
  • When dal turns brown ,add the cooked jackfruit strands and ground mixture to it.
  • Mix well and saute for 3 sec.

Yummy thoran is ready.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Rava Idli

This recipe can make 20 idlis.

  • Rava/Sooji - 300 grams
  • Sour Curd - 2 cups
  • salt to taste
  • Carrot,grated - l large
  • Coriander leaves - few
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tablespoon
  • chana dal - 1 tablespoon
  • Cashews ,broken - 10 to 15
  • Ghee - 3 tablespoon
  • Sugar - 1 tablespoon
  • ginger - a one-inch piece
  • green chillies - 2 to 3
  • Heat a kadai and dry roast the rava till it turns light golden in colour.
  • Set aside to cool down to room temperature.
  • Chop coriander leaves finely ,grate carrots and add to the roasted rava.
  • Chop ginger and green chillies finely and add to the rava.
  • Heat a tablespoon of ghee and add mustard seeds.
  • When it splutters,add chana dal and saute till it turns golden brown and add to the rava.
  • Add sour curd,a teaspoon of ghee and sugar to the rava.Mix well without forming lumps.Adjust the consistency with little water.
  • Set aside the batter for 30 min.
After half an hour,the batter would have become more thick.Add little curd and bring it to the consistency of normal idly batter.
  • Spread little ghee on each hole of the idly plate and pour a laddle of batter in each hole of the idly plate.
  • Steam for 15 to 20 min.
Yummy idlis are ready.Serve hot with special coconut chutney/Potato masala.

Special coconut chutney

This chutney goes very well with Rava idly.

  • Coconut - shredded from one medium sized coconut.
  • Urad dal - 1 tablespoon
  • Red chillies - 3
  • Tamarind - a small ball of diameter 2 cm.
  • salt to taste
  • Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
  • curry leaves - few
  • oil - 2 teaspoon
  • Heat a tadka pan,add a teaspoon of oil.
  • When hot,add urad dal and saute till it becomes golden brown.Switch off the flame and add red chillies to it.
  • Add the roasted contents along with shredded coconut,tamarind,salt to a mixer and grind coarsely with little water.
  • Temper with mustard seeds and curry leaves.

Paruppu thogayal

This is a very simple and mild thogayal that goes excellent with vathakozhambu.

This recipe serves 4.

  • Pasi paruppu/Moong dal - 100 grams
  • Coconut,Shredded - 60 grams
  • Salt to taste
  • Red chillies - 2
  • Heat a kadai and add moong dal.Saute till it becomes golden brown in colour.
  • Wash the roasted dal and soak in water for half an hour.
  • Strain the excess water after half an hour.
  • Add the soaked dal,coconut ,little salt(always add half salt for this thogayal as it needs to have a bland taste) and red chillies in a mixer and grind to a slightly coarse paste.Add little water and grind if required.

Vendaikai vathakozhambu

  • Tamarind - tightly packed lemon size ball
  • Ladies finger - 250 grams
  • curry leaves - few
  • gingelly oil - 4 tablespoon
  • Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
  • Chana dal - 1 tablespoon
  • Red chilli - 2
  • Sambar powder - 2 tablespoon
  • salt to taste
  • turmeric powder - a pinch
  • jaggery - a pinch
  • asfoetida - a pinch
  • Soak tamarind in hot water and extract a thick juice out of it.
  • Chop ladies finger into small pieces and saute them well with a teaspoon of oil in a kadai.
  • Set aside.It has to be roasted.
  • Add 3 tablespoon of oil to the kadai.When its hot ,add mustard seeds.
  • When it splutters add chana dal and saute till its golden brown
  • Add red chillies,asfoetida,curry leaves and sambar powder and saute for only 2 sec.Do not saute for a long time as it may get burnt.
  • Add the tamarind juice extract,salt,turmeric powder,jaggery and cook well till raw smell goes off.
  • Now add 1 to 1 1/2 cups of water and cook till it becomes slightly thick.
  • You can have it watery or thick as per your wish.Some people prefer to have it watery ,but it is normally made thicker.You can store it in refrigerator for 4 to 5 days.
  • Note :To get a thicker consistency,dissolve a teaspoon of rice powder in little water, add it to the kozhambu afer adding water and then boil it.
You can make vathakozhambu with brinjal or any vathals like manathakali,sundaikai .When you use vathals,the recipe is slightly different.Add a teaspoon of ghee in a kadai,add vathals and fry them till it becomes crisp but do not burn them.After the kozhambu is prepared add the fried vathals to it just before serving so that it does not become soggy.

Serve with rice and pappad or paruppu thogayal.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Carrot Peas Pulao

This recipe serves two.

  • Basmati/Sona masuri rice - 200 grams
  • Carrots,chopped lengthwise - 5 large
  • Peas - a small cup
  • onion,chopped lenghthwise - 1 large
  • ginger garlic paste - a pinch
  • Coconut milk(optional) - 1/2 cup
  • Cloves - 2
  • Cinnamon - 1
  • Bayleaf - 1
  • Green chillies - 2
  • Pepper - 1/4 teaspoon
  • Garam masala powder - 1/4 teaspoon
  • Cashew - 5 to 6
  • Salt to taste
  • Ghee - 2 tablespoon
  • Wash and soak the rice for 1 hour.Drain the excess water after 1 hour.
  • Heat a heavy bottomed pressure cooker.Add ghee and the whole spices to it.Saute for a sec.
  • Slit open the green chillies and add to it.Saute for a sec.
  • Add the onions,saute for 2 sec and then add ginger-garlic paste.
  • Saute till onions become transparent and then add the veggies(carrots and peas)
  • Saute for 2 to 3 min till the raw smell of veggies go away.
  • Add the soaked rice and saute well.
  • Now add water in the ratio (Rice : Water = 1:1).To enrich the taste,instead of only water ,we can add a mix of water and coconut milk.
  • Add salt,mix well and pressure cook.(Just 3 to 4 whistles on medium flame).Do not over cook as the rice grains have to be separate.
  • Heat a tsp of ghee in a kadai and fry the cashews till golden brown.
Garnish the rice with cashews.The same recipe can be followed with any combination of veggies.

Homemade Hyderabadi Irani samosas

This recipe makes 15 samosas

For the dough
  • Atta/Wheat flour - 100 grams
  • Maida/All purpose flour - 100 grams
  • Salt - 1 teaspoon
  • Oil - 2 tablespoon
  • Water
For the filling
  • Onion,chopped - 3 large
  • Poha/Puffed rice - 100 grams
  • Chat masala - 1/4 teaspoon
  • turmeric powder - a pinch
  • Red chilli powder - 1/2 teaspoon
  • Coriander powder - 1 teaspoon
  • Jeera powder - 1 teaspoon
  • Salt to taste
  • Coriander leaves - finely chopped,4 tablespoon
  • oil - 3 tablespoon

For making samosas
Maida paste - Add little water to 5 tablespoon of maida and mix well to form a paste.the paste need not be very thick.


For the sheets:
  • Mix atta,maida,salt,oil in a wide open vessel.Add water little by little and knead well to form a soft dough.
  • Set aside for 20 min.
  • Make round balls from the dough which is of diameter,say 4 cm.
  • Spread the dough using a roller into a very thin sheet as we do for romali roti.Sprinkle maida flour onto the sheet as you roll to avoid sticking.
  • Cut the edges to form a rectangular shape.You can make two sheets from each ball.

  • Heat the tava on medium flame and place the sheet on it.
  • When you see one or two dots,flip to the other side.Remove from the tava when you see dots in this side too.

  • Do not allow brown dots to appear.Just heat it on both sides so that it becomes like pastry sheets.

Sheets are ready for making samosa.

For the filling:
  • Mix all the ingredients well.

  • Heat a kadai,add oil .When its hot add the ingredients .
  • Saute well till the onions turn light brown.
Filling is ready.Set aside to cool it down to room temperature.

Making the samosa:
  • Apply little paste along one side of the sheet.(along any length side of the rectangular sheet)[Fig A]
  • Start folding it from end to form a cone.[Fig B]
Step by Step pics to form a cone is shown below.
  • Add 2 to 3 tablespoon of filling into the cone.Do not over stuff it.
  • Close the top portion ,applying little paste to form a triangle.(as shown in fig.C)
Finally the Samosas.........................
  • Heat a kadai in high flame and pour oil into it.
  • When its hot,reduce the flame to medium and drop two to three samosas at a time.
  • Fry for few sec and turn over and cook the other side.
  • When the samosas turn golden brown ,take them off and place onto a tissue paper to absorb the excess oil.
Yummy samosas are ready for a tea time snack.

Mango rice

  • Raw mango - 1 large
  • Rice - 1 cup (150 grams -Sona Masuri/Basmati rice)
  • salt to taste
  • Red chilli - 1
  • Green chillies - 2 large
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tablespoon
  • Chana dal(kadalaparupu),soaked in hot water for 15 min - 1 tablespoon
  • Peanuts - 2 tablespoon
  • Cashewnuts - 1 tablespoon
  • curry leaves - few
  • turmeric powder - a pinch
  • asfoetida - a pinch
  • coconut,shredded - 5 tablespoon(optional)
  • coriander leaves,finely chopped - few
  • Wash and soak the rice for half an hour.
  • Pressure cook the rice.Spread the rice in a plate,add 2 teaspoons of gingelly oil,salt and set aside to cool.The grains should be separate.
  • In a kadai,add 2 teaspoon of ghee/gingelly oil and mustard seeds.
  • When it splutters add asfoetida,green chillies,red chilli and peanuts.
  • When peanuts get roasted,add curry leaves,coconut and mango and saute for a min.Do not saute for a long time as the mangoes may lose its tangy taste.
  • Switch off the flame.Add the rice and mix well with a flat spatula.Make sure that you do not mash or break the rice.
Heat a teaspoon of ghee and roast the cashews till golden brown.

Garnish the rice with cashews and coriander leaves.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Manga kari

This recipe can make a cup of pickle as shown above.Unlike other pickles,mango kari can be had immediately and tastes best when consumed within 2 weeks after preparation.

  • Raw mango - 2 large
  • salt - 2 tablespoon(can vary depending on the mango)
  • Red chilli powder - 2 tablespoon
  • Gingelly oil - 4-5 tablespoon
  • Asfoetida powder - 1/4 tablespoon
  • menthya powder/fenugreek powder - 1/4 teaspoon
  • Wash the mangoes well and chop it into very small pieces.Do not remove the skin.
  • To the chopped mangoes ,add salt and set aside for 10 min.
  • In a kadai,add oil and when its hot,add mustard seeds.
  • When mustard seeds splutter,switch off the flame and add asfoetida to it.
  • Add red chilli powder to the mangoes.
  • Add the tempering to the mangoes.
  • Sprinkle menthya powder on top and mix well.
Yummy mangakari is ready.This goes well with molagootal,dosai and curd rice.Refrigeration is required if not consumed within two days.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Milagu vellam

  • Buttermilk - 1 1/2 cups
  • pepper - 1 tablespoon
  • Red Chilli - 1
  • Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
  • curry leaves - few
  • salt to taste
  • turmeric powder - a pinch
  • vendhayam - 1/4 teaspoon
  • Hing powder - a pinch
  • Add 1/2 cup of water in a thick bottomed vessel along with salt,turmeric powder,pepper and cook covered for 2 min.
  • When it boils,add butter milk and keep stirring it for a min and switch off.(Do not let it to boil)
  • Temper with mustard seeds,vendhayam,red chilli,curry leaves and asfoetida.

This is a very mild and simple recipe .Can be served with rice.Its also good to have it when you have fever or cold.

Potato podimas

This recipe serves two.

  • Potato - 5 medium size
  • green chillies - 2 to 3
  • coconut,shredded - 3 tablespoon
  • curry leaves - few
  • coriander leaves - few,finely chopped
  • mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
  • urad dal - 2 teaspoon
  • lemon - 1 medium size
  • salt to taste
  • oil - 2 tablespoon
  • Pressure cook the potatoes and mash it slightly with salt.(You still need to have some small pieces in it).
  • Heat a kadai,Add oil and mustard seeds.
  • When it splutters,add urad dal and saute till it becomes golden brown.
  • Add green chillies,curry leaves,coconut and saute for 2 sec.
  • Reduce to low flame and add the mashed potatoes and mix well.
  • Switch off and add coriander leaves.
  • Squeeze lemon juice to it.Mix well and serve hot.

This goes well with sambar,poricha kozhambu,more kootan.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Milagu jeeragam Poondu Rasam

This rasam is very good for cold/cough.

  • Coriander seeds - 2 tblespoon
  • Chana dal - 1 teaspoon
  • tuar dal - 1 teaspoon
  • Jeera - 1.5 teaspoon
  • Pepper corns - 1 teaspoon
  • Red chilli,dried - 1 to 3
  • fenugreek - 1/4 tsp
  • tamarind - 1 medium lemon sized
  • turmeric powder - a pinch
  • curry leaves - few
  • coriander leaves,finely chopped - 2 tablespoon
  • salt to taste
  • Hing/asfoetida - a very small pinch
  • jaggery - a half inch piece
  • garlic pods - 8 to 10
  • mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
  • jeera - 1/4 teaspoon
  • ghee - 1 teaspoon
  • tomato,chopped - 1 medium size
  • Soak coriander seeds,dals,pepper,jeera,red chilli,garlic pods and curry leaves in hot water for 20 min.
  • Soak tamarind in hot water for 5 min and extract the juice out of it.
  • Grind the soaked ingredients with little water . The ground paste should be sightly coarse.(not too fine)
  • In a thick bottomed vessel,add the tamarind extract,turmeric powder,jaggery,hing,salt,tomato and cook till the raw smell of tamarind goes off.
  • Add the ground paste to it and cook covered till the raw smell goes off.Open the lid in between and stir it.(otherwise it may overflow from the vessel).
  • Dilute the contents by adding 2 to 3 cups of water(Pour correct amount of water so that the rasam should not lose its taste on dilution and at the same time it should not be thick).
  • Do not allow the rasam to boil. When you see froth on the surface ,switch off and temper with mustard seeds and jeera in a tsp of ghee.
  • Garnish with coriander leaves.
Yummy rasam is ready.Fight your cold with hot rasam.

potato vegetable stew

This recipe serves four.

  • Potatoes,cooked and mashed - 4 medium sized
  • carrot,chopped finely - 1 medium sized
  • onion,chopped finely - 1 large
  • Peas - 1 hand ful
  • coconut milk - 100 grams
  • Salt to taste
  • coconut oil - 2 tablespoon
  • refined oil - 1 tablespoon
  • curry leaves - few
  • ginger,finely chopped and crushed - 1 1/2 table spoon
  • Green chillies ,(according to taste) - 2 to 4
  • Pressure cook the potatoes.Peel off the skin ,add salt and mash smoothly without lumps.
  • Heat a kadai and add refined oil.Add onion and saute for 3 min.
  • Add carrots,ginger,green chillies and peas and saute for 2 sec.Pour water so that the veggies are just immersed and cook covered for 5 to 10 min till the veggies are cooked.
  • Now add mashed potatoes to it and little water as required to maintain the gravy consistency.
  • Cook on medium flame for 3 to 4 min and pour the coconut milk to it.
Extracting coconut milk at home

Grind the shredded coconut with little water in a mixie and extract the milk out of it using a strainer.Keep grinding and extracting with little water ,say 2 to 3 times depending on the coconut.Usually the first two extracts are preferred.
  • Do not cook for a long time after adding coconut milk.Just when its about to boil,switch off the flame.
  • Add curry leaves and garnish with coconut oil.
Yummy stew is ready.Mix well and serve with appam.It goes well with sambar sadam too.


This recipe serves three.

  • Rice (Raw rice/pacha arisi) - 200 grams
  • urad dal - 1 tablespoon
  • vendhayam/fenugreek seeds - 5 -6(exactly 1/4 of a teaspoon)
  • cooked rice, at room temperature - 30 grams
  • Salt to taste
  • sugar - 1 tablespoon
  • Coconut,shredded - 1/2 of a medium sized coconut
  • Dried yeast(optional) - just 4 in number (touch in fingertip an dissolve in little hot water)
  • Coconut water - taken from three coconuts
  • Soak rice,urad dal,fenugreek in water for 4 to 5 hours.

  • Grind the soaked ingredients with half of coconut water.

  • When its half ground,add coconut and cooked rice and remaining coconut water and grind finely.
  • The consistency of the batter should be lighter than dosa.(pouring consistency).When you pour the batter in the kadai,it should easily spread as you swirl the kadai.
  • Add salt,sugar and yeast(optional..) to the batter and stir well.
  • Leave the batter overnight at room temperature to ferment.
  • When the batter is fermented,its ready for making the appam.
  • When you are ready to make the Appams, heat a small non-stick kadhai on medium flame and pour a ladle of batter into the center.

  • Quickly swirl the kadhai to spread the batter thinly on the walls. What has not stuck to the walls of the kadhai should pool in the bottom (Appams should look like a bowl with thick bottom!).
  • Cover the kadhai and cook for 3-4 minutes or until the Appam is golden and crispy on its thin edges and cooked and fluffy at the bottom.
  • Gently run a spatula under the Appam to release it from the kadhai and serve hot.
  • Appam goes well with korma/coconut milk/stew.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Paneer butter masala

This recipe serves four.

  • Cottage cheese (paneer), cut into triangles 200 grams
If you like more paneer in your gravy,add 500 grams of paneer.
  • Butter 5 tablespoons
  • Oil 1 teaspoon
  • Bay leaves 2
  • Cloves 2
  • Cinnamon 2 one-inch sticks
  • Dried red chillies, broken 2
  • Coriander seeds, crushed 2 tablespoons
  • Onion , sliced 1 medium
  • Ginger garlic paste 2 teaspoons
  • Coriander powder 1 teaspoon
  • Red chilli powder 1 teaspoon
  • Tomatoes, chopped 5-6 medium(If using ready made puree,take 15-16 tablespoon of puree.)
  • Jaggery 1 tablespoon
  • Salt to taste
  • Kasoori methi , crushed 1/2 teaspoon
  • Fresh cream 3 tablespoons
  • corn flour 2 tablespoon

  • Heat three tablespoons butter with one teaspoon oil in a kadai.
  • Add bay leaves, cloves, cinnamon, red chillies and half of the crushed coriander seeds. Sauté for half a minute. Add onion and stir-fry for thirty seconds and add ginger garlic paste. Cook for another thirty seconds.
  • Add coriander powder, red chilli powder,jaggery and tomatoes/puree. Cook on high heat till oil leaves the masala. Puree the mixture.
  • Heat the remaining butter in a pan, cook the pureed mixture for two minutes.
  • Add paneer pieces and salt. Add half a cup of water. Cook covered on low heat for five minutes.
  • Dissolve 1 tsp of cornflour in little water and add to the puree.
  • Keep stirring till you get a slightly thicker consistency.
  • Sprinkle kasoori methi and mix in lightly. Remove from heat and mix in cream. Serve hot with rotis/phulkas, garnished with remaining crushed coriander seeds.

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