Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Mandakki OggaraNe/ Puffed Rice Poha/Soosla


Puffed rice is nothing but kadle puri, mandakki or murmura. We enjoy any snack associated with this i.e churmuri, bhel puri, khara hacchida puri or even puri unde i.e puffed rice balls. It’s light and not to worry much about the fatty stuff.

It’s something different than our usual stuff of upma, pasta, burgers etc. This is a combination of sweet and spicy flavours enhanced with zesty lemon.

Am sure by now, regular visitors to my kitchen can depict our dinner style– 1 item that is light, tasty and convenient. Mandakki oggaraNe is a readily suitable item in our family on any days of the weekJ. Here’s a wonderful method that I have adopted from my MILJ!!!

Ingredients

Medium sized onion finely chopped –2

Green chillies finely chopped – 1

Putani/hurgadle/roasted Bengal gram+ Grated dry coconut - less than ¼ cup

Puffed rice – 6 cups

Turmeric powder – ¼ tea spoon

Asafoetida - pinch

Mustard seeds/ sasive – 1tspn

Kadle beLe/ chana dal – 1tspn

Udina bLle/ urad dal – 1tsp

Cumin seeds/ jeera – 1tsp

Oil – 3tbspn

Salt to taste

Lemon juice to taste

Coriander for garnishing

Method

  • Grind the roasted Bengal gram and dry coconut in a mixie to a fine powder and keep it aside.
  • Heat oil in a pan, add mustard seeds and allow it to sputter. Next add both the grams, cumin seeds, turmeric powder, asafoetida, green chillies and fry for a second.
  • Then add chopped onions and sauté for some time.
  • Later, take a large bowl filled in water. Soak the puffed rice well in the water and remove it in both the hands and squeeze the water completely and add this puffed rice into the pan. Repeat this procedure till all of the puffed rice is over.
  • Sprinkle some salt and add ground powder and mix well on low flame.
  • Take it off from the heat to garnish with chopped cilantro and a dash of lemon!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

KodubaLe or crispy fried rings

Hello everybody! Sorry for an abrupt break from my side. I didn’t have a clue either about my time off until just a day before we boarded the jet. Today I am back with a yummy spicy karum kuram KodubaLe......KodubaLe kodubaLe kaasigondu kodubaLe i remember hearing this kannada song sometime ago.......

KodubaLe is a famous traditional snack of Karnataka, particularly in south india. It’s a spicy fried item that goes well with tea; coffee or now-a-days even with a mug of beer ;). This particular dish originated many years back and I can vouch that grandmas age band used to make the best of the lot – after all the experience, patience and skill required to do it.

It’s fairly easy to prepare but involves persistence and a bit of endeavour:). But once ready, you can keep it in an air tight container for about 15days to 1month and enjoy it whenever you want - as a evening snack with hot hot coffee on a rainy day or just as a nibble while studying for your exams or even just while watching some TV program or just to give some company for your guests......you just need a bahana to take the pleasure of this crunchy snack!

Yesterday along with my mom, I attempted making these kodubaLes and it was really an enjoyment – initially we went on eating kodubaLes while checking if the spice/salt was right proportion and finally got just the right thing in there. Now-a-days all these foods items r so easily accessible in most of the stores which has made the busy city life much simpler but still somehow I fancy homemade ones where you know what all goes into it and of course the flavours does matter :)!
Heres my version of KodubaLe which I have picked up from my mom :)

Ingredients

Rice flour – ½ kg
Red chilli powder – 4tsp
Freshly grated coconut – 1cup
Cumin seeds – 2 tsp
Maida/Plain flour – 2tsp (dry roasted maida)
Hot oil/Ghee – 2 tbsp
Putani pudi/hurgadle pudi/roasted Bengal gram powder– ½ cup
Salt to taste
Oil for frying

Method

  • Grind cumin seeds and coconut in a mixie without adding water to a fine powder. Add all the above ingredients along with the grinded mixture in a thali or a big plate one after the other and mix well with hands.
  • To this add hot oil or ghee and mix well again with hands. Next add little water at a time and blend with your hands to make smooth firm dough. Knead well and keep it covered.
  • Take lemon sized dough and roll it smoothly on a flat plate without putting much pressure to form a long thread like structure. Then join this thread end to end to form the ring shape or bangle shape OR you could also make 2 or 3 rounds and keep it aside as show in the picture (You can give the desired shape).

  • Repeat the same procedure with rest of the dough.
  • Heat oil in a kadai or a pan, drop around 6-8 of these prepared rings into the oil and deep fry them on a medium flame.
  • Turn around couple of times and fry them until golden brown in color. Remove them on a paper towel to take off the excess oil.
  • Now once KodubaLe is cooled, its ready to get into an air tight container and later into our tummy as and when required ;)

Hope you all enjoy my KodubaLes :)! Have a nice day!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Shavige uppittu

Shavige in kannada means vermicelli or kind of thin noodles. Most commonly used one is akki shavige which means rice vermicelli. We make different dishes like shavige uppittu or upma or bath, shavige payasa (kheer). Shavige uppittu is served as a breakfast item in most of the houses in south india. I use the shavige/vermicelli that we get in the market. Homemade shavige tastes best and I believe making shavige/rice noodles is an art and 1 has to have lots of patience to achieve good results.

I remember Upahara Darshini was the 1st among the restaurants to serve this scrumptious dish along with chutney and there used to be such heavy rush irrespective of the day/time. It was the fastest way to get a meal nearer to homemade ones.

We prefer Shavige uppittu as our dinner item as its quite healthy and filling with varieties of vegetables of our choice, not oily at all and of course can be made colourful in no time:)!

Ingredients

Shavige/Rice noodles – 100gms
Chopped carrots – 1 cup
Chopped beans – 1 cup
Green Peas – ¼ cup
Grated ginger – 1 tsp
Spring onions cut into circles for garnishing
Chopped green chillies -1
Finely chopped onion – 1
Handful of curry leaves
Oil – 4tspn
Mustard – 1/2tsp
Chanadal/Kadale beLe – 1tsp
Urad dal/ Uddina beLe – 1tsp
Cumin seeds/Jeera – 1tsp
Turmeric powder -1/4tsp
Asafoetida - pinch

Method
  • Microwave carrot and beans in a MW safe bowl with some amount of water for 3-4min and keep aside.
  • Cook rice noodles in boiling water for 5min and once done, transfer all of the rice noodles into a colander & run under the tap water (this is a tip to avoid the stickiness of the rice noodles)
  • Heat oil in a pan, add mustard seeds and allow it to splutter. Next add chana dal, urad dal, turmeric, asafoetida, green chillies, grated ginger and curry leaves.
  • To this add the finely chopped onions and sauté. Then add the boiled vegetables along with green peas and fry for some time. Add salt and mix well.
  • Next add the cooked shavige or vermicelli to the above vegetable base and mix well on low flame.
  • Lastly take off from the heat and enhance the freshness with some zesty lemon juice. Generally chopped cilantro or coriander leaves is used for garnishing but I like garnishing with spring onion circles which gives a fiery effect:)!!!

Have a colourful week ahead and ciao all soon!


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

ChavaLikaayi Maatvadi Palya/Guar or Cluster Beans dry curry


Our London trip is always a resultant of many yummy south Indian veggies that we are deprived off here. Yes you have guessed it right. We shop veg like crazy – shaamegedde, tondekayi, menthya soppu, seemebadnekayi, chavalikayi, maavinakayi etc. Many a times I get teased as, I go to London to shop vegetables :-p. Well, I feel we value a thing when it is not amongst usJ.

So this week’s playa is also from London chavaLikaayi ;). ChavaLikaayi/Gorikaayi is also known as guar in hindi or cluster beans in English is a very nutritious vegetable. They are rich in proteins and carbohydrates. I recently came to know that it also produces gum and this guar gum is used as a thickening agent in ice creams, dairy products etc

I think this vegetable is used all over India in fried, steamed or boiled forms. The style of curry that I would be presenting today is a traditional one carried on from grandmas but ofcourse done in a modern way using a grinder instead of pestle & mortal :d. It’s a dry curry, I really wonder what the word ‘maatvadi’ means? Will update this post once I find it J. The combination of chapattis and chavaLikaayi maatvadi playa is a complete protein meal! Here’s what you have to do to achieve good results ;)

Ingredients

ChavaLikaayi/Guar/Cluster beans – 250gms (washed wiped and cut into 1/2inch pieces)

Oil – 2tbspn

Mustard seeds – 1tspn

Kadale beLe/Chanadal – 1tspn

Uddina beLe/Urad dal – 2tspn

Cumin seeds – 1tspn

Turmeric – ½tspn

Asafoetida – 1/4tspn

Lemon juice – 1tspn

For grinding

Dried red chillies – 1 (for medium spice)

Red chilli powder – 4tspn

Chanadal/KadalebeLe soaked in water for 2hrs and drained – 1/2cup

Freshly grated coconut – 1/3 cup

Coriander leaves

Method

  • Grind the soaked dal along with red chilli powder, salt, red chillies, coconut and coriander leaves into a coarse paste.
  • Next heat oil in a pan or a kadai and add mustard seeds and wait for it to splutter. Then add the chana dal, urad dal, cumin seeds, turmeric powder, and asafoetida and lastly add chavaLikaayi/cluster beans. Sprinkle some water and cook.
  • Now add the ground paste along with some salt to the pan and mix well. Keep on low flame for around 15min & cook or till the dal is cooked. Add some amount of oil if required and keep stirring so that it doesn’t catch the bottom. Once both the masala and the beans have blended well, it’s time to take off from the heat.
  • Mix in the lemon juice & let it cool. Wonderfully tasting dry playa is ready to be served!!!

Serving Suggestions: ChavaLikaayi maatvadi playa can be served with chapathis or even makes a good combo with hot rice + ghee + some fried items like sandige, happala (papad). It can also be served as a side dish with rice + tomato saaru/rasam!

Variations: Cluster beans can be replaced with chopped Menthya soppu/fresh methi leaves. Whenever we make this menthya soppina maatvadi playa, my MIL prepares yummy stuffed pooris with the left over subji as stuffing; we enjoy them with some pickle and yogurt yum yum J

I am so fond of this dish that I end up eating just this by itself after the first round of meal :-p.

Hope you all enjoy this healthy dish! Ciao sooooooooooooon!!!!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Maavinakaayi Chitraanna/Raw Mango rice



I was off on family trip to london all these days and subsequently couldn't update abhi-ruchi kitchen, sorry for disappearing abruptly. Our trip also was formed in a whiz. Though it was an adventurous trip we had a good time. We celebrated P’s 2nd year bday with his favourite thomas tank engine cake and a dinner party @ pizza hut. He was thrilled to see an edible thomas :d. Heres a glimpse of my son’s all time choice – Thomas tank engine!

I call it an adventurous trip because the flights got diverted to Malaga which was the nearest city aiport as the visibility got messed up. And we were taken in an airport authority bus to Malaga airport (which took us almost 1.30hrs drive) from where we continued the journey and reached our destination sometime midnight. The 2.30hrs flight transformed into almost 9hrs flight ufffff.

Even the giant Rock of Gibraltar was completely covered with mist and nothing was visible even just outside the window. Yeah weather plays a vital role here wrt landing/taking off the flights. I guess even pilots are highly skilled.

Now let me tell you more about the Gibraltar airport runway in this post.

Gibraltar airport run way is on a reclaimed land. Its in the proximity of the Mediterranean and Atlantic. The run way is also used as a road that connects Gibraltar to Spain. If somebody has to drive from Gibraltar to Spain then they have to cross the runway. Yes it sounds a bit strange but this is how it works. The road traffic is stopped with a signal light when there are aircrafts landing or taking off. The security is excellent here.

The airport is distinct in its own way – probably its 1 of the closest airport to the city, i think its just around 500mts to the city centre J. If we are picking up some guests from the airport, we have the privilege of starting from home, only after we have seen the air craft land, from our balcony ;). Best part is many a times we have even walked down to the airport when we are not in a hurry or do not have much bags with us.

Here are few pics showing flights landing on the runway taken from our balcony. These pics are taken initially when i was crazy about watching every flight landing and take off :d. P is happy to see all modes of transport daily in the evenings – bus-car-bikes, boat, air crafts. He even identifies the airlines now ;)

Recently we had a stunning air show performance by the famous Red Arrows and we were lucky to watch the whole presentation. We did manage to capture few of their tricks in our SLR, heres a peek....

Now coming to my foodie talk, today am presenting an easy way of making Mavinakayi chitraanna or raw mango rice. I am not sure if this is a common method, we just tried something different in a jiffy and liked this recipe. Here goes the procedure for making it.

Ingredients

Serves 4

Raw rice – 1 cup

Raw mango grated – 2 medium sized

Fresh coconut grated – ½ cup

Mustard seeds – ½ tsp

Chana dal/ kadale beLe – 1tsp

Urad dal/ uddina beLe – 1tsp

Cumin seeds/ jeera – 1tsp

Turmeric powder – ½ tsp

Asafetida – 1/4tsp

Red chillies – 2 (medium spice, u can adjust according to your spice level)

Groundnut – 3tbspn

Handful of curry leaves

Salt to taste

Oil – 3tbspn

Method

  • Wash the rice till the water is clear and cook it with 2cups of water in an electric cooker. Once the rice is done spread it on a thali or a large plate and let it cool.
  • Heat oil in a pan/kadai, add all the tempering ingredients one by one i.e mustard, both the dals/lentils, turmeric powder, asafetida, red chillies, curry leaves. Next add groundnut to this and fry for a min or so till you hear some cracking sound.
  • Then add the grated raw mango and fry for about 2-3min and turn off the heat.
  • Lastly add this to the rice along with grated coconut, salt and mix well with your hands.

Mavinakayi chitraanna is ready to be served.

As i have shown in my earlier posts, you can also make mavinakayi chitraanna using chutney or even make this way. You can adopt whichever is easy for you. Any variations are welcome. Hope you all liked this week’s shoot & narration.

Happy reading J!!!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Nougat


Rachel Allen is 1 of my favourite chefs and I really enjoy watching all her popular series. Her charismatic and natural style makes her interesting to watch. I like her way of cooking, as it’s practical, simple yet delicious. I fell in love with this dish called Nougat while watching her Home Cooking series recently and thought why not give it a shot? And here’s the right week to indulge in yummy treats as I have mentioned in my earlier post ;).

Nougat is a term used to describe variety of traditional goodies made with sugar and roasted nuts. There are two types of nougat i.e. white and brown. White nougat is made with beaten egg whites and is soft and brown nougat is made with caramelized sugar and has a crunchy consistency.

Sugar is heated at different temperature before mixing it with the egg white & nuts. I felt this dish is something similar to Chikki , a traditional Indian sweet made from jaggery syrup and nuts. Here goes the recipe for Nougat

Ingredients

Caster sugar – 450g

Powdered glucose – 225g

Water – 150ml

Egg whites – 2

Rice paper – 8sheets, measuring 6x15cm

Almonds, pistachio nuts roughly chopped and toasted – 150g

Candy thermometer

Method

  • Add the sugar, powdered glucose and water in a pan on a medium heat and bring it to boil. Keep stirring till the time sugar dissolves. Then reduce to the heat to low and simmer without stirring. Keep on low heat until the mixture reaches 121deg Celsius (Dip a sugar thermometer/candy thermometer to measure this). This might take 10-15min.
  • Next add the egg whites in a large mixing bowl. Once the sugar temperature reaches 110deg Celsius begin whisking the egg whites to stiff peaks in an electric food mixer on a low setting. Once the syrup reaches 121deg, pour a quarter of it on a slow, steady stream into the egg white and continue to whisk.
  • Immediately return the remaining syrup to heat and keep it on heat without stirring till it reaches 149deg Celsius. All the while continue whisking the egg whites on a slow speed. Egg white is used as a whipping agent here.
  • Once the syrup reaches the required temperature, pour carefully in the same way as u did earlier into the whisking egg whites. Continue to whisk the egg whites for about 30minutes. By then the mixture would be stiff and halved in the volume. Now the nougat mixture is ready. If the mixture sticks to the sides of the bowl, you can scrap down the sides of the bowl with a spatula dipped in boiling water.
  • Meanwhile, place half the rice paper at the bottom of a cake tin measuring 25x15cm (you can use any rectangle shallow cake tin).
  • Stir the nuts into fully whisked nougat mixture and mix well. Pour this mixture into the prepared tin and spread quickly using a spatula dipped in boiling water. Place the remaining sheets of the rice paper on the top to cover and press down to stick.
  • Allow it to cool and then place in the refrigerator overnight or 4-6hrs until set.
  • Then remove the block of nougat from the baking tin and cut into fingers. This has to be stored in fridge, wrapped individually in parchment paper or cling film.

We are enjoying these delicious candies after every meal :d. Here’s the first look of Nougat after it is set –

Now that I have given the details about Nougat and share it with you all, I think its time for me to have a bar of Nougat; wont you join me ;)?

Monday, October 5, 2009

Boondi Ladoo


Its festival season around and the fast approaching celebration is Deepavali/Diwali. Besides, this week is our lil ones bday too & his likes and dislikes are also seasonal: d – so the current trend is towards sweetie :d. So thought why not make few of the luxurious sweets and rejoice the whole week. So here’s a ‘sweet week’ from abhi-ruchi as well this timeJ! Hence I would write few of my real-time tryouts which were winners right away……..

First dish of the week would be Boondi Ladoo i.e. an Indian sweet prepared out of gram flour, flavoured sugar syrup and dry fruits which later are formed into balls.

Making boondi ladoos was a nightmare for me. I had just eaten these ladoos in functions like weddings, naming ceremony or in any sweet meat shops. I never had seen or heard people make these ladoos at home for festivals or any celebrations. I came across this lady describing boondi laddo as such a simple and speedy dish which made me curious to do a trial run @ abhiruchi_kitchen J and here is the result. But yes of course the main part in making Boondi Ladoos is to use the right kind of utensil i.e. the perforated ladle or a grater and the consistency of the sugar syrup. Let me try and explain you the whole episode of making of Boondi Ladoo.

Makes around 16-18 Ladoos of the size you see in the pic below.

Ingredients:

Gram flour/ Besan – 2 Cups

Water – 1cup + I added another 2tbsp of it. You can see the consistency and then a

dd if reqd

Sugar – 3 Cups

Water – 2cups

Ghee – 2tbsp

Cashew – 2tbsp

Raisins – 2tbsp

Cardamom powder/ elachi powder – 1 to 2 tspn

Oil for frying

Perforated ladle/Grater

Candy thermometer (this is the easiest way when 1 cannot make out the exact consistency of the syrup)

Method

  • Add the water and sugar in a pan and bring to a boil on medium-high heat. When the syrup comes to a boil, reduce the heat to medium and stir to dissolve the sugar. Then let it simmer until the syrup is about half thread consistency or 220 degrees on the candy thermometer.
  • Next mix the gram flour with water to make a smooth batter without any lumps. The batter consistency should be slightly thicker than dosa (pan-cake) batter.
  • Heat the oil in a frying pan on medium heat.
  • Hold the perforated ladle/grater just 1 to 11/2 inches above the oil with 1 hand and with the other hand pour some of the batter onto the grater/ladle such that the batter covers all of the holes.
  • The batter will start dropping through the holes into the oil. Drop enough boondi into the oil so that they just cover the surface of the oil in a single layer.
  • Fry them until the sizzling sound stops and the boondis are slightly gold in colour but not crispy. (When you try to break a boondi between your fingers, it should not crack; it should just squeeze in and comeout)
  • Pick up the boondis with another slotted spoon and put them directly in the warm sugar syrup.
  • Repeat the process of making boondi and adding to the syrup with rest of the batter. Make sure you wipe clean the ladle/grater after pouring 1 bath of batter. Let the boondis soak in the sugar syrup for few minutes.
  • Next add the cardamom powder and dry fruits to the syrup.
  • Boondis soak most of the sugar syrup. Drain off the excess syrup (not much will be there)
  • Let them sit until they are warm enough to handle. Remember not to let them cool off completely. If the boondis become cold then it will not be possible to form them into ladoos or balls (sugar will crystallize)

To make Ladoos

Reality struck me when I started making the ladoo’s – the fun part of the whole evening was just about starting…..

  • First take some of the boondi mixture into your palm with a spoon. Gently squeeze the mixture between both the palms (you can refer the pic here) and give a round ball shape. Whilesqueezing some of the syrup might drip, that’s normal.
  • As you finish making the ladoos go on keeping them on a plate and continue with the next ladoo. As the ladoos cool to room temperature they will become firm but moist.

You can store these Boondi Ladoos in covered container up to 10days and can be refrigerated up to a month.

A long procedure isn’t it? No wonder that we finished the first part of making boondis and the sugar syrup in less than 30 minutes… binding the ladoos together, took more than an hour ufffff. This surely needs a lot of practice and patience. Ultimately we succeeded doing it hurrayyy!!!

Tip: Making Ladoos is not a 1man show – yes it might not be possible for the 1st try to do everything alone, you might need a helping hand.

Please note that the sugar syrup is at the right temperature, orelse you will not be able to form the ladoos.

Don’t worry if you are not able to make ladoos, you can still enjoy them as “see boondi”or “sweet boondi” or “meethi boondi”

Enjoy life as it comes J! Have a nice day!!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Saagu/Mixed vegetable in spicy coconut gravy


Saagu is a traditional dish of Karnataka in which the spices are blended with coconut and cooked with varieties of vegetables. It’s a side dish for poori, chapati or even some hotels in south India serve set dose, rave dose along with sagu.

We have a preference of poori-sagu combo during winters on a cold & wet day for 2 reasons i.e. I don’t get prickly and provoked by the time I finish frying the pooris and we can do a good batting and justice to our stomach too ;).

Chopping veggies are a bit time consuming, as the range has to be cut into small pieces. After this part everything gets ready in a zoom. If your kid gets hang of this masala, I think you can add sagu as 1 of the top dish in your list as it’s a good mixture of vegetables in 1 go.

Here goes my style of making Sagu

Ingredients:

Carrot finely chopped – 1Cup

Cauliflower cut into small florets – 1 Cup

Beans finely chopped – 1 Cup

Potato finely chopped – ½ Cup

Green Peas – ½ Cup

Masala to grind:

Cumin seeds/Jeera – 1tsp

Green chilly – 2 or 3

Ginger – 1inch

Poppy seed /Gasgase/ khus khus – 1tsp (sleep-bringing

poppy ;)…..na don’t worry its just 1sp)

Cinnamon – 1inch piece

Roasted chanadal / Putani/– ¼ Cup

Freshly grated coconut – ½ Cup

Onion – ½ (optional, its just that I am ‘irulli priye’;)

Coriander leaves – ½ bunch

Few leaves of curry leaves

For tempering/tadka

Oil –2 tbsp

Mustard seeds – ½ tsp

Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp

Asafetida – ¼ tsp

Method

  • Grind all the masala ingredients into a fine paste by adding little water and keep aside (this looks like a chutney consistency).
  • Heat oil in a pan or kadai. Add mustard seeds and allow it to splutter. Then add turmeric and asafetida.
  • Next add the vegetables that take more time to cook like carrot and cauliflower mix well and cook for sometime. Then add beans, potato and mix well.
  • After that, add salt, mix well, cover and cook.
  • Lastly add green peas (this hardly takes a min or 2 to cook so u can add just before adding the masalas). Add the masala paste to this vegetable mixture, mix together and cook. Add water do your desire consistency and bring it to boil. Stir intermittently and make sure that it doesn’t catch the bottom.

Saagu is ready to be served.


Variations: There’s no hard and fast rule with the vegetables to be used here. You can use vegetable of your choice. Sometimes I do use sweet corn kernels to make sweet & spicy style sagu! My mom uses green leafy vegetables also in sagu but am not sure which 1 in particular will ask her and update here soon.

Serving Suggestions: Poori + Sagu is an ideal combination aging from centuries. It can also be served with chapati or rice or even dosa. We luv eating leftover sagu with mosaru anna or curd rice :d.

I hope you are enjoying my array of cooking. Any suggestions/feedbacks to perk-up abhi-ruchi are always welcome at abhiruchi_kitchen@yahoo.com

Have A Nice Day J!!!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Theplas/Methi parathas/Fenugreek flatbread from Gujarat


I love Gujarati cuisine for all its sweet-spicy taste. Thepla, khandvi, chhundo, khaman dhokla….wow am drooling :d. Thepla or the methi parathas being the famous are 1 of my favorites. This reminds me of our exciting train journey where we used to carry these yummy thelpas with tomato pickle and plain yogurt – it had its own unique charm adding to theplas. I think it’s quite a common practice for any gujarati to carry theplas for their trips/journey for the basic fact that it has shelf life and tastes equally good as it was on the day of preparation.

Though the fenugreek leaves/methi leaves have a distinct bitter taste, this becomes negligible with rest of the spice mix in this particular recipe. I feel this is a terrific way to get our kids eat the greens. Pizza is a magic word for my son so I slice a thepla into 4quarters (something like a regular pizza) and serve each quarter as a pizza ;). I have heard that in areas where you don’t get methi leaves/fenugreek leaves you could also make it with zucchini, carrot, lauki (though I haven’t tried)

Well, many of them use a mixture of gram flour and wheat flour for preparing this dish but as we are not a big fan of gram flour, I have just used wheat flour and also eliminated the usage of ginger garlic paste as in the standard recipe for making this simple parathas.

Here goes the recipe for 10 theplas approximately….

Ingredients

Wheat flour – 2 cups

Methi leaves/fenugreek leaves finely chopped – 1bunch

Cumin powder/ Jeera powder – 1tsp

Red chilly powder – 1/2tsp

Green chilly finely chopped – 1 or 2

Turmeric powder/haldi – 1/2tsp

Pinch of asafoetida

Salt to taste

Water

Oil/ghee

Method

  • Put all the ingredients except oil in a large mixing bowl or a thali and mix together adding little water at a time. Knead well so that the ingredients blend well together to make soft and smooth dough.
  • Cover and keep this finished dough aside for about 20-30min to rest.
  • Make even size balls from the dough. Very lightly flour the rolling board and roll each ball using a rolling pin into round shape say around 6-7” diameter.
  • Meanwhile heat the griddle, put the rolled thepla on the griddle and do the first flip when you see tiny bubbles rise on the top surface of the thepla. As soon as you flip, spread some oil/ghee on surface of the thepla. Flip again in about 30sec and drizzle oil/ghee on this surface too. The thepla is done when it’s crispy and golden brown on both the sides.

Hot hot theplas are ready to be served with chhundo and yogurt or with your favourite pickle or chutney J

Variations: You can mix the dough with curd instead of water to make soft parathas.

I would like to thank all my readers for taking interest in reading my blog and appreciating all my cooking trails - this is really encouraging me to tryout new things and post more frequently. Thanks a lot for encouraging me!!!

Will be back with another chatpata recipe soon, till then have a fabulous week ahead!!!





Monday, September 28, 2009

Happy Dasara


Navaratri and Dasara are festivals celebrated over a period of ten days. The first nine days represent Navaratri festival. As the names itself explains – Nava means nine and ratri means night. Dasara, which is the last day and the tenth day, is also celebrated as Vijayadashami (Vijaya in Sanskrit means Victory). The celebrations begin on the first day of the month of Ashvin month or Ashvayuja masa according to the Hindu calendar.

Navaratri generally falls in the month of October; though the exact date differs from year to year. This is the time when we as kids waited for Dasara holidays ;). Though our holiday would be loaded with home works but still enjoyed the freedom.

Just thinking back why we celebrate Navaratri habba/bombe habba/ Dasara/ Durga Pooja/ Garbha etc. So here are a few, that I have come to know from my elders, books, articles…I hope I will be able to give the same cultural heritage and upbringing to my son as well J

The festival of Dasara is celebrated to worship the goddess Durga who is known in various forms i.e chamundeshwari, kali etc. It is celebrated in various versions as Durga Pooja in Bengal and Orissa and as Dasara and Navaratri in other parts of India, celebrating the victory of good over evil.

In Northern India Ramalila ceremony is observed on the dasara day commemorating the victory of Rama over the demon-king Ravana and the rescue of Sita. Gujarat states celebrates it with Garbha.

In southern India, usually Goddess Durga pooje, Saraswathi pooje, Maranavami or aayudha pooje and Vijayadashami is important. Celebrations include display of godess in various forms and toys for the nine days; hence it’s also called as ‘bombe habba’. I remember as a kid, I along with my mom and grandma’s help used to make playground, zoo, cricket field etc for the bombe habba. This used to be a huge step wise arrangement in our drawing room so the sofas, dining table etc would be moved for a couple of days. People who came to see bombe i.e the toy arrangement were given some sweets or candies called 'bombe baagana'.

During Saraswathi pooje, we worship books to symbolize the goddess of knowledge, on aayudha pooje we worship tools like scissors, knives, vehicles or machinery etc and the celebrations conclude with Vijayadashami on the tenth day of the month. Aarthi is performed daily in the evenings along with devotional songs.

On Vijayadashami day it is said that the Goddess Durga also known as Chamundeshwari killed the demon Mahishasura and got the name as Mahishasuramardhini, this event is said to have taken place near Mysore, city of Karnataka state. So event on this day Mysore dasara is very famous and people from all over the world come to see the celebrations. When the city was a princely state, celebrations on this day would include a gran procession of the king of Mysore in a golden ambari (elephant mounted throne) to banni mantapa (a playground) where he would symbolically cut a shami tree. Now with the integration of the princely states into the union of India, the maharaja is replaced by the idol of Godess Chamundeshwari. Variou artists from different fields like classical music, dance, flute, veena etc display their talent in the mysore palace grounds area. People thong to appreciate these performers.

The story of the Shami tree goes like this – The Pandavas had hid their weapons in a Shami tree when they underwent a period of exile. At the end, they returned to that spot and found their weapons intact and so they worshipped with prayers both the shami tree as well as the Godess Durga, deity of strength.

Meanwhile the kauravas got the news of Pandavas arrival and had invaded that area. Hence Pandavas fought the battle and won the fight. The day that all these events took place has been known as “Vijayadashami”. That’s why even to this day, people exchange shami leaves and wish each other victory in their own projects.

Overall, the main idea of Navaratri is the triumph of good over evil.

Wishing you all victorious in all your endeavors with my Shavige payasa/ Vermicelli pudding.

Ingredients

Shavige/ cut vermicelli – 1/3cup

Few cashews and raisins roasted in 1tbsp ghee

Water – 1/2cup

Sugar – 3tsp

Whole milk – 1cup

Cardamom powder/elachi powder – 1/4tsp

Method

  • Heat 1tbsp of ghee in a pan. Add vermicelli and roast till light brown in color.
  • Then add water and cook till soft.
  • To this add sugar and mix well.
  • Then add milk and bring it to boil. Keep stirring occasionally so that it doesn’t catch the bottom.
  • Lastly add the dry fruits and elachi powder and mix well.

Shavige Payasa is ready to be served.

Wishing you all a Happy Dasara!!!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Paneer Bhurji

Bhurji is a name used for dryish kind of a curry. Egg bhurji (something similar to scrambled eggs but with masalas) being the famous form. For people who don’t eat eggs, it can be substituted with Paneer or Indian cheese. This is a quick recipe and comes handy when you are left with no veggies/ minimal veggies or when you don’t want to get into an elaborate dish. Both egg bhurji and paneer bhurji tastes yummy when made with right masalas. I would like to mention that its 1 of our favorites during cold & wet day!

Here goes my version of Paneer bhurji

Ingredients:

Finely chopped onions – 1cup

Finely chopped tomatoes – 1cup

Finely chopped peppers – 1cup

Ginger grated – inch

Green chillies – 3 or 4

Red chilly powder –1tsp

Garam masala – 1/2tsp

Cumin seeds – 1tsp

Turmeric powder – 1/2tsp

Asafetida – ¼ tsp

Paneer grated – 200gm

Salt to taste

Oil – 2tbsp

Method

  • Heat oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds and allow it to splutter. Then add turmeric, asafetida, ginger, green chillies and along with this sauté onions.
  • Next add peppers and fry for sometime.
  • Then add tomatoes, salt, red chily powder and garam masala and mix well.
  • Lastly mix together the grated paneer and simmer for few min.
  • Garnish with cilantro.


Variation: There’s no hard and fast rule to be followed while making this dish. You can add any vegetables of your choice but remember they need to be finely chopped or else it doesn’t blend well with the paneer or egg. Paneer can be substituted with beaten eggs to make egg bhurji. Masalas also can be altered according to your taste.

Serving suggestion: It can be served with hot chapathis, rotis. Some prefer eating with rice and pickle as accompaniment.

Have a nice weekend!!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Vegetable Burger


Random is kinda becoming our favorite word nowadays :d. With a bubbly toddler, I feel sticking to the same rigid routine to optimize your time kills your ability to enjoy life. More so, imposing the same patterns on our children like filling their precious weekends with classes etc also makes them feel a bit L. So I felt injecting unpredictability and surprises in our lives brings back our zeal! Small things like taking a totally different route for your daily walk or taking kids to the park/zoo after their school instead of heading straight home makes them happy and am sure ‘happy kids means happy moms’ J.

To add this Vegetable burger also was a random pick during the week, when we got a surprise call that our little master’s seat was confirmed in 1 of the best schools here (am sure pple who have experienced in getting admission to schools realize how we feel about our victory). It was time to treat the lil one & of course ourselves too ;)

Pizza, burger, ice creams, chocolates r few of his desired items. As always I was keen on giving him a healthy supper rather than a chocolate filled pudding.

I had a clever idea to make sure nothing gets wasted so decided to make Veg burger – this has good nourishment & also satisfying too. It isn’t difficult at all. Infact we prefer homemade burgers as they are customized ;).

Just follow the simple steps and fail-safe tips, you will master in no time. Thus we felt sometimes spur-of-the moment decisions makes us feel light rather than having everything mapped out.

Treat your little ones too with this versatile dish.

Ingredients:

Boiled and peeled potato – 1

Boiled and peeled sweet potato –1 (I used this keeping my son in mind, as this wud make it a bit sweet and also healthy)

Capsicum finely chopped – ½

Onions finely chopped – 1

Carrot grated –1

Sweet corn – ½ cup

Ginger grated – 1inch

Green chillies –2

Oil – 2tbspn

Amchoor powder/ dry mango powder – 1tspn

Salt to taste

Bread crumps – ½ cup

Burger buns

Salad – Shredded Iceberg lettuce & peppers, Sliced tomatoes & onions, pickled gherkins

Tomato ketchup

Mayonnaise

Method

  • Heat oil in a pan. Add green chilles, ginger and sauté the onions.
  • Next add capsicum, sweet corn and fry for sometime.
  • Then add carrot, salt and mix well.
  • Lateron mix boiled potatoes, amchoor powder with rest of the ingredients.Take off the heat and let it cool.
  • Next add the bread crumps with the above and mix well.
  • Divide the mixture into 6, then using wet hands shape into burgers/patties.

  • Heat a non-stick skillet; place the burgers for 5mins on each side, until golden and crisp. You can brush them with slight oil.
  • Meanwhile, warm or toast the buns.
  • When the burgers are ready, spread each bun with some of the salad and top with the patties, ketchup and mayonnaise. You could also finish with a drizzle of green chutney or chili sauce.

It was quite impressive for our family, hope it works with you all too!

Happy cooking J

Variations: You could also add green peas, finely chopped green beans or any veg finely chopped for the patties, any masalas that you like. Sauces can also be altered to your choice like English mustard or Mexican salsa etc

Monday, September 21, 2009

Aloo Baingan /Potato and Eggplant curry


Cooking quick, tasty meals to keep our family happy can be a challenging job. Sometimes all planning and hard work just washes out completely. So I just thought why not try making something spur-of-the-moment, believe me it really worked. It had all the authentic flavors to create that fab, unfussy meal at home. I felt it was a brrrrrriliant idea to liven up quick midweek supper. So why not rustle up this classic curry yourself?

Here goes the procedure for it.

Ingredients:

Purple eggplant /baingan, un-peeled, cut into cubes - 1

Potatoes peeled and cut into cubes -2

Tomatoes cut into cubes -4

Chopped cilantro for garnishing

Oil – 1tbspn

Pinch of asafetida

Cumin seed –1tsp

Chopped green chili – 1 (adjust according to your taste)

Ginger paste –1tsp

Coriander powder/dhania powder – 1tbspn

Turmeric – 1/2tsp

Paprika – 1/2tspn

Salt adjust to taste

Water –2tbsp

Oil to fry

Method:

  • Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium high heat. Fry the potatoes till they are cooked. Take out potatoes with a slotted spoon and place on a paper towel. Fry the eggplant pieces same way.
  • In a small bowl, mix the shredded ginger, green pepper, coriander powder, paprika, turmeric, and water to make a paste.
  • Heat the 1 tbspn of oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds and asafetida after seeds crack add the spice mixture and stir-fry for a minute or until oil start to separate from the spice mixture.
  • Add chopped tomatoes stir-fry for a minute.
  • Add fried potatoes and eggplant mix it gently, let it simmer for three to four minutes. Subji should be not very dry if needed add few spoons of water.
  • Turn off the heat and garnish with chopped cilantro.

Aloo Baingan is ready to be served.

Serving Suggestions: Roti, naan, chapattis make a good combo with aloo baingan. It can also be served with rice.

Have a nice day :)!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Menthya soppina kalsidanna/ Methi rice/ Fenugreek leaves rice

Fenugreek is used as both an herb as well as a seed. The fresh leaves are used as greens and the dried ones are used to flavor the dishes (kasuri methi). It can also be sprouted. By nature fenugreek seeds tastes bitter but it has very high amount of nutritional value. It is rich in carbohydrates, proteins, Vitamin A and C, iron, calcium and minerals.

It’s also considered as the most beneficial medicinal herb. Due to the cooling and soothing effects of Fenugreek seeds, they are considered beneficial in skin irritation and inflammation. The other benefits of this herb includes solving digestive disorders, anemia, respiratoryinfections, dandruff, prevents blackheads, pimples, and premature ageing.

It also cures the diabetes and lowers the blood pressure. It’s also a strong stimulator of milk production in lactating mothers.

With all the detailed information I have known about methi, I simply can’t stay away from it here. Yes, another item that we are deprived off here is menthya soppu. Our desire for menthya soppina kalsidanna, methi parota, matvadi palya yum yum…led us to grow menthya soppu or methi leaves in our kitchen garden J. Take a peek of our 1st yield – its so fresh, green & tender and organically grown with healthy looks J.


So this has become our regular activity of sowing the seeds and wait for about 2-3weeks for th

e yield. Then we enjoy our menthya soppu + alugadde +batani kalsidanna thereafter! I thought of sharing this exceptional recipe with you all; hope you all will like it too. This is a dish that can be made just for a simple lunch/brunch or can be included as a side dish in the habbada oota i.e the festive lunch menu. Its quite common as a lunchbox item as well. Easy to prepare and non messy to eat at work J

Ingredients:

Finely chopped menthya soppu/ methi leaves – 1 cup

Peeled and cubed potatoes – 1

Green Peas – ½ cup

Oil – 2 to 3tbsp

Mustard seeds – ½ tsp

Cumin seeds – ½ tsp

Turmeric – ¼ tsp

Pinch of asafetida

Palyada pudi/ vangibath powder/ annadapudi – 1 to 2 tbsp

Salt to taste

Dash of lemon juice

Rice ¾ cup washed and cooked (rice to water ratio should be 1:2)

Method:

  • Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds and allow it to splutter. Next add cumin seeds, turmeric, asafetida and potato. Fry for sometime.
  • Next add green peas, mix well and cover and cook.
  • Then add menthya soppu/methi leaves, salt & cover and cook.
  • Lastly add bath powder and mix well.
  • Then add the cooked rice and mix up with a dash of lemon.

Menthya soppina kalsidanna is ready to be served.

Serving Suggestions: You can serve menthya soppina kalsida

nna with some papad, sandige, pickle or tastes good even with some raita.

Menthya sopina kalsidanna and mosaru anna (curd rice) makes an excellent combo for a packed lunch.

Ciao sooooooooooooooonnnnnnnn J!

Friday, September 11, 2009

We are a nation of snack lovers………..

Our summer trips were getting planned and as customary our trips involve many yummy snacks. This time I decided to make something new, which I haven’t tried earlier! We prefer spicy snacks to sweet dishes. So we concluded that we experiment mucchore in my workshop ;) for our Germany trip.

Mucchore is a savoury snack made in homes of Kannada speaking people. It is something similar to chakkuli with a spicy version. Generally this is made during festivals like krishnajanmaasthami, or during weddings and Aarathi ceremony i.e occasion during 7th month of pregnancy.
Many of them prepare it well in advance for their trips or picnic, as it’s easy to carry and to eat. You can have this anytime anywhere doesn’t require any frills like ketchup/chutneys or any serving dish. This can be stored in airtight containers for months.
Mucchore is one of the snacks that tastes best with evening tea or just a munching for that weak moment around 11.30ish or any other time during the day when one feels they need to exercise their mouth or to satisfy all those tindipotaru‘s (slang in kannada for snack lovers) hunger ;)
I think we are a nation of snack lovers. My mom used to make such snacks like kodbale, chakkuli, muchhore, nippatu, khara sev …and store them in a particular container. Whenever I entered the kitchen I knew its there right in that box and it used to be so tempting….. Peek a boooooo and one gone….so this way without anybodys notice or guilt muchhore enters your stream ;). Am sure this is the general trend and not just with me :)

While returning back from my India trip, by chance I carried along with me the chakkuli oralu or the murukku maker, which made my job easier. I got the victory over mucchore hurraayy!!!But yes credit also goes to my public-spirited mom who shares all the recipes and my supporting husband without whom I couldn’t have done so many trial runs/research for a successful release on abhi-ruchi :)!
Heres the recipe I followed for mucchore
Ingredients:
Akki hittu/Rice flour – 3cups
Putani powder/roasted chanadal – 2cups
Om pudi/Ajwain powder– ½ spoon
Red chilly powder – 2tbspn to 3tbspn
Ghee – 2 tspn
Hot oil – 4tbspn
Salt as per taste
Water for mixing the dough
Oil for deep-frying

Method

  • Mix all the ingredients in a big plate using little water at a time. The dough consistency should resemble that of chapathi dough (As shown in the picture below)
  • Fill the chakkuli maker till ¾ with the dough and press to make round shape or your desired shape
  • Deep fry these in oil on medium flame till golden brown & then remove them on a paper towel
  • They cool and are ready in a minute with your cuppa tea/coffee.
    Make sure you store them in airtight containers only after they are cooled.
    You all can pickup few from abhi-ruchi and enjoy with your evening tea ;)!
    Have a nice day :)!!!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Mouthwateringly deliciousssss…..

Gojju is a generic term used in kannada for a 3S dish i.e sweet+sour+spicy ;). We make gojju with varieties of vegetable like okra, peppers, onions, tomato, cucumber gojju etc.
Some vegetables are cooked and some are raw. So the gojjus that are made with raw vegetables are called as hasi gojju.

Today I am sharing maavinakaayi hasi gojju or raw mango hasi gojju. Generally the type of raw mango used in this particular dish is giNimoothi maavinakayi , literally means parrot’s beak raw mango – its called so as the mango is shaped like a beak of a parrot.

My granny was an expert in making this dish, ( belong to such pampered category that I didn’t even bother to ask her anything more about the recipe other than gulping it off ;)).
And now, I tried out my own ratio and luckily it turned out to be lip smacking. This dish is packed full of flavour and a doddle to make when you’re short of time – Yes it can be as quick as making maagi noodles ;).

Ingredients
Raw Mangoes (tastes best if it is giNimooti mavinakayi) – 1
Sarina Pudi/Rasam powder – 1tbspn ( you can add it according to your spice level)
Jaggery – 2tbspn
Salt to taste
For tempering
Oil – 1tbspn
Mustard seeds – 1tsp
Pinch of turmeric
Pinch of asafetida

Procedure

  • Wash and wipe the raw mangoes clean.
  • Cut the mangoes into small pieces including their skin but discarding their seed
  • Mix together all the ingredients in a bowl and let it sit for 10-15min.
  • Make the tempering in a kadai and add this to the mango mixture.
    Mix well and ready to be served.

    This can be refrigerated upto 15days.

Serving suggestions: It can be served with hot rice, chapatis or dosa.

Have a nice weekend :)!!!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Pani Puri

C for Chaats
Chaat is a plate of savoury snacks typically served at the roadside stalls or carts in India. Aloo tikkis, bhel puri, dahi puri, pani puri, papdi chaat, sev puri etc come under the Chaat category. Chaat specialty varies from city to city.
Chaats are one of the favorites among all ages. I was ready to eat Bangalore chaats anytime of the day :). I really miss standing in front of those small shops or stalls, where we buy coupons and wait for the vendor to prepare and present you some yummy colorful dish. They are easily accessible and customized to individual’s taste like more/less spicy; add more onions, tomatoes etc. And not to mention the car service that the shops offers – my goodness what a serviceeeee…..
Back to college days where we all were treating on our pocket money so this was the best option for all of us – all the items ranged between Rs.10 to Rs.25/-
We made Panipuri, the easiest amongst the lot last week and this reminded me of the C for chaats made in India.
Panipuri or Gol Gappa or Phuchka consists of a round hollow fried puri/sphere, which is filled with potato, onions, chickpeas and spicy water. Sometime ago I remember reading why it is called as Gol gappa - round crisp puris (gol) is placed in the mouth and eaten at once without many bites(gappa).
Let me take you to a virtual world of panipuris ;)
Typically Panipuris are served in 5-10 quantities, which makes a plate. Some shops also offer panipuris pre-prepared in a whole plate. But the most popular way is to be served 1 at a time from a roadside vendor. The customers hold a small bowl (made of dry leaves) and stand around the vendor’s cart. The server then starts preparing 1 puri at a time and gives 1 to each of them. Here the server has to remember each customer’s preferences eg: sweet panipuri or more filling or more onions etc. He also has to keep a count of how many panipuris each person has had. Thus Panipuri vendors are well known for remembering choices and numbers served. Thus he finishes his servings with a cup of pani.
Thus with your aah..aah or water in your nose off in a zoooooooom – Yes its as simple as it sounds :). What r u waiting for?

Ingredients
For filling
Puris/Gol gappas – 1 Pkt ( that u get in any Indian stores)
Finely chopped onions- 1
Grated carrot – 1
Boiled potatoes with skin peeled and mashed – 1
Finely chopped cilantro
Lemon Juice

Pani/Spicy water
Cilantro – ½ bunch
Mint/ Pudina leaves – ½ qty of cilantro
Cumin seeds – 2tsp
Tamarind – 2 lemons sized balls
Jaggery – double the qty of tamarind
Black salt – 2tsp
Garam masala – 1/2tsp
Green chillies – 3 or 4
Peppercorns – 2
Lemon –1
Onion –1
Preparing Pani : Grind cumin seeds, tamarind, jaggery, black salt, garam masala, green chillies, peppercorns, lemon and onions in a mixie to a fine paste.
Later on add mint and cilantro to the above paste and grind together to a smooth paste.Add this paste to 1litre of water and mix well. Pani is ready to be served

Meeta/Sweet chutney
Tamarind – 1 lemon-sized ball
Jaggery – Thrice the tamarind
Preparing Meeta/ sweet chutney: Soak both jaggery and tamarind separately in warm water for sometime. Squeeze all the juice from the tamarind and mix it with jaggery and bring it to boil and then take off from heat and cool. Sweet chutney is ready.

Method of making Panipuri
  • Take 5puris and make a hole with your hand in the center.
  • Fill the puris with boiled potatoes,carrot, onions, cilantro
  • Top it up with some sweet chutney and fill the puris with pani/spicy water and gulp it at 1 shot.Enjoy your panipuris !
Variations: For the filling you could also add boiled green peas along with potatoes, add sprouts or chickpeas.
You can also chill the pani and serve.
Have a nice weekend!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Vegetable Puffs

Iyengar Bakeries – the wonder, the splendor…..
Bakeries dot every street of our town i.e. Bangalore, more specifically Iyengar bakeries. Sometimes I really wonder how this orthodox sect got into the making of all the English stuff using eggs etc.
Almost every corner in southern Bangalore has an Iyengar bakery.
Bakery’s specialties are the yummy potato bun, the spicy khara bun, really sweet benne biscuit (butter cookies), artistically arranged dilkhush and dilpasand, tasty veg pups (what they call for puffs) and to end with all this a cup of yellow colored badam milk :)! (Wow am drooling writing all these :-p).
I would like to mention that 1 of my buddy is closely associated with these famous Iyengar Bakeries, hence anything newly introduced in the bakery we would be the tasters ;). I was lucky to see few of the bakery’s daily activities – Got to know that earlier on the bakers used to do most of their jobs manually but now a days machines have taken over them.
As a college student I enjoyed these bakeries as our adda ;). The best time to eat bakery stuff was in the afternoons, when the eatables came hot out of the Iyengar ovens.
Iyengar Bakeries no doubt offers a variety of items but each one of them are carb feast, so better watch out. That’s why the Bangaloreans are spoilt/pampered with all the comforts of toast, puffs, alu bun, nippattu… along with the supporting weather.

Well…even after statying away from Bangalore for the last 7yrs, I get nostalgic thinking about the varieties of options that we have back home. I never bothered to try even knowing what flour was used to bake or make, courtesy darshinis & bakeries – seriously they are God’s Gift for the working couples I feel. But today, the urge to eat those delicacies has forced me to learn all those professionally made dishes, which seem to be so easy and interesting. Best part is you find all the required ingredients here in their best quality, which yield the best result when followed according to the instructions – something similar to the Iyengars :)! One such trail was Vegetable Puffs, which becaಮೇ a hit!( Thanks to 1 of my blogger frnds V)
Here is a peek for the dish –

Ingredients:
Puff pastry sheets (the one that you get in super markets in frozen section)
Boiled potatoes – 11/2 cup
Boiled veggies like finely chopped carrot, beans, and green peas – 11/2 cup (make sure all the moisture is removed from the vegetables using a cloth or a tissue)
Finely chopped onions – ¾ cup
Finely chopped cilantro – ½ cup
Finely chopped green chilly – 3 to 4
Coriander powder – 1 teaspoon
Cumin seeds powder/ Jeera powder – 1 teaspoon
Red chilly powder – 1teaspoon
Black Pepper powder – 1 teaspoon
Garam Masala – 1teaspoon
Chaat Masala – ½ teaspoon
Sauf – ½ teaspoon
Oil – 1 to 2 Tbsp
Salt to taste

Method
To make the masala
:
  • Heat oil in a pan and add sauf, let it splutter and then add onions and fry till golden brown.
  • To this add the boiled vegetables, mix well and fry for about 2min.
  • Lastly add all the masalas, salt and cilantro. Mix well and take off the heat.
To make the Puff :
  • Keep the puff pastry sheet out from the refrigerator for about 1hour till it is thawed completely. (Or just follow the instructions as mentioned on the box becos it might vary from brand to brand)
  • Unroll the pastry sheet carefully; cut the sheet into rectangular pieces.
  • Keep the above-prepared masala on one side of this rectangle; apply a little bit of water on all the four edges of the sheet and pull and cover the other side of the rectangle over the masala and seal it well on all the sides.

  • Bake on an aluminium sheet over 350 – 450 F for 30min.

Hot hot vegetable puff is ready to be attacked

Enjoy the aroma of the Bakeries at the comfort of your home over the weekend and ciao you all again next week!!!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Spice up your supper

Food becomes more delicious when it is associated with some good memories. And sometimes each one of them brings back many memories and I enjoy the thoughts that flow in my mind :)! I capture few delicious moments to cherish year after year.
I am presenting one such all time favorite item i.e. Mavinakayi chutney.

I had fallen in luv with this chutney sometime ago at 1 of our relatives place in a small town. It was hot summer afternoon when we were traveling by road to our village, where we stopped over for lunch at S place. Invariably during summer every house in India enjoys the most extensively exploited fruit for its juice, flavour, fragrance and colour . Yes we too enjoyed the BaaLe yele oota (banana leaf) with anna-saaru, payasa, chitra anna (rice-rasam, kheer, lemon rice) and ofcourse last but not the least tantalizing mavinakayi chutney. The hospitality & kindness shown by the hosts made it even tastier.

And now with my parents in-law around we are having a feast here – Kadubu, ambode, payasa, dappa menasinakayi chitraanna, usli, hoLige, mavinakayi chutney, mavinakayi chitraanna……..Yes my mil is an expert in making varieties of mavinakayi chutney which can be had with rice, chapathis, dosa, idli or as a spread also. Last week we all enjoyed the mouthwatering chutney made by her. Again it’s quite precious for us, as we don’t get raw mangoes here, so it was a watchful eating ;).

This mavinakayi chutney is a good choice if you fancy comfort food, but don’t want anything too calorific OR if you want something full of flavour & a doddle to make when you are short of time! All you need to do this is –

Ingredients
Menthya / Fenugreek seeds – 2tspn
Grated raw mangoes (skin peeled) – 2 to 3
Red chillies – 3 or 4
Dry coconut – 150g
Jaggery – 25g
Salt to taste

For tempering
Oil – 2tbsp
Mustard seeds – 1tsp
Pinch of asafetida
Turmeric – 1/4tsp
Few curry leaves

Method
  • Dry roast methi seeds and powder it. Dry roast the coconut and grind it along with the methi seeds.
  • Dry roast red chillies & grind it with the above and keep it aside.
  • Grind grated raw mangoes, salt and jagerry to paste without using water. To this add the methi-coco-red chillies and grind into a smooth paste. (Depending on the sourness of the mangoes you can adjust the quantity of the jaggery)

    To make the tadka/tempering
    Heat oil in a kadai, add mustard seeds, asafetida and curry leaves. Take off the heat and then add the turmeric to get a good colour.
    Now the most tempting Maavinakayi Chutney is ready to attack.

Serving Suggestions: It tastes best when eaten with hot rice and ghee. It can also be served with chapattis, dosa, idli or even can be used as a spread.

Variations: This chutney can be even made with fresh grated coconut but this is to be used within 24hrs of time.
When made with dry coconut, can be refrigerated upto 10-15days. But make sure you use a clean dry spoon to serve.
Chutney tastes equally good when made with the frozen raw mangoes also.

Have a spicy weekend & Ciao u all again next week !!!!

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