Dec 31, 2009

Lasagna

This is gonna be one of those special recipes. Yeah, this recipe is from my youngest contributor to the blog. Her name is Shiny and I suppose shez in her eighth grade...She did this lasagna during our first meetup...V have moved to AZ recently, n her's was the first Indian family I encountered :) I'm glad they were the first...They were such a lovely family, who made me feel at home, nt wen I first saw 'em...it was even before tat...yeah, wen I first spoke to 'em over phone :) I've been quite missing my large rocking band of frnz from IL...looks like I've settled in a similar group nw...no place is gud wen u don't have frnz to talk n share...n tat too for me, who spends most of my time talking...talking...n talking, I NEED FRNZ alltime :)

Coming to Shiny....Shez one of those well mannered kids around...amazing part of her being, she loves to experiment cooking at tis young age...I swear, I was nowhere arnd the kitchen at her age...to be more precise, nt even till i got married and "had" to cook...I knw itz nt too much of a proud secret to share :( still got to accept the truth...Time to present, Shiny's Lasagna to u all nw :)

Prep Time: 20 Min
Cook Time: 45 Min
Ready In: 1 Hr 5 Min
Original Recipe Yield: 9x13

Ingredients :

  • 1 (16 ounce) package lasagna noodles
  • 4 cups ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 eggs
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (32 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Directions :

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain and lay lasagna flat on foil to cool.
In a medium bowl, combine ricotta, Parmesan, eggs, salt and pepper; mix well.
In a medium saucepan, heat oil over medium heat and saute garlic for 2 minutes; stir in spaghetti sauce and Italian seasoning. Heat sauce until warmed through, stirring occasionally, 2 to 5 minutes.
Spread 1/2 cup of sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Cover with a layer of noodles. Spread half the ricotta mixture over noodles; top with another noodle layer. Pour 1 1/2 cups of sauce over noodles, and spread the remaining ricotta over the sauce. Top with remaining noodles and sauce and sprinkle mozzarella over all. Cover with greased foil.
Bake 45 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly and top is golden.
    Note: We did take a pix of it...will upload it soon...
    @ Shiny : Thanks a ton for the wonderful dish darl...

    Maida honey biscuits:

    This was a recipe which I came across in some TV program. Since I don't have much of a sweet tooth and also trying to stay on a diet these days, there is no way that I might try out this quick yet yummy recipe in the near future....Me not going to try it out, isn't going to stop me from sharing the recipe :) Here you go....

    Preparation:
    From maida, make a dough similar to the one made for poori. Then spread it out like poori after applying some oil in hand and dusting in maida. Make some rectangles from the poori. Fry them in hot oil.Fry till golden brown and remove it once done.

    In another pan, add butter. Add cashews + badam + pista + dry fuits and saute till well fried. Cool it. Transfer the fried biscuits to this.Once cooled add honey to it.

    Dec 30, 2009

    Cucumber salad/Raita

    Since I'm stuck on to my plan of making some healthy salads for hubby dear these days, i try to come up with some variations in salads everyday. This one was passed from one of my friends. The recipe sounded more like a raita when I got it from my buddy...bt who cares...cos the salad/raita was good and tatz wat matters :)

    Preparation:

    To finely chopped cucumber add thick yogurt. Add very less yogurt. Do not add like you add for raita.
    In a pan , heat oil and once it is hot, temper with some urad dhal, dry red chillies and curry leaves. Add this to the salad. Add salt and pepper as req. Also garnish with some coriander leaves.

    It was yummy. So try it out.

    Simple Mushroom Thokku


    Ingredients:
    • Onion - 1
    • Tomato - 1
    • Turmeric pdr - 1/4 tsp
    • Chilli pdr - as req
    • Coriander pdr - as req
    • Mushroom - 1 box
    • Ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp (opt)
    Preparation:

    In a pan, heat some oil...add mustard seeds (opt)...Once the seeds splutter, add onion and saute till it changes to brown. Then add tomato to this and saute till it becomes mushy. Add mushroom, salt, chilli pdr and coriander pdr. Cook in a closed pan for 5 minutes. Yummy Mushroom thokku is ready. Goes excellent as a side dish for rice. Can also be had with rotis.

    Dec 29, 2009

    Kara Poli

    (tried to make like the one we get from Sri Krishna sweets Came out well ... )


    Ingredients :

    for dough :
    • Maida flour - 2 cups
    • Turmeric powder - little
    • salt - little
    • Oil
    for stuffing :
    • Potato - 4
    • Onion - 1
    • Red chilli powder or green chillies
    • Jeera powder - 1/4 tsp
    • Dhaniya powder - 1/4 tsp.
    Method :

    for dough :
    • In a bowl add maida flour + turmeric powder + salt + oil and add water little by little and knead the dough and set aside for atleast 2 hours ..
    for stuffing :

    Boil potato and mash it well... Chop onions finely and keep it ready. In a Kadai add 2 tsp. of oil , once it is hot add onions + salt + chilli powder or green chillies + dhaniya powder + jeera powder and saute well till it becomes golden brown colour now add the mashed potatoes and mix well and allow it to cool then make small balls of the potato masal and keep it ready ...
     
    for Poli :
     
    Take small amount of dough and flatten it with hands by applying oil in your hands ...the procedure is same as we make sweet poli or stuffed parathas place the potato masal in the middle and close it with maida dough from all sides then gently again flatten it with hands .Now heat a tawa , and place this poli and heat it on both the sides ...by adding little oil ...hot hot kara poli is ready.

      Dec 24, 2009

      GG-CC Brinjal Curry


      I know the recipe name sounds different....trust me, the taste was equally different and nice...wanna give it a try...here comes the recipe :)

      Well, to start off, reason behind the name...GG - Ginger Garlic, CC - Chilli, Corriander :) Howz tat ???

      Ingredients:
      • Ginger - 1 inch
      • Garlic pods - 4
      • Green Chilli - 1 or 2
      • Coriander leaves - 4 or 5 strings
      • Brinjal - 5 small or half of a large eggplant (cut into small cubes)
      • salt - as req
      Tempering:
      • Oil
      • Mustard seeds
      • Urad dhal
      • Dry red chilli - 1
      • Cumin seeds - 1/4 tsp
      Preparation:

      Once you cut the brinjals into small cubes make sure you put them into salted water with turmeric so that they don't discolor.
      Grind ginger, garlic pods, green chilli and coriander leaves to a coarse paste without adding any water.
      In a pan, heat some oil, temper it with the above listed tempering ingredients and then add the brinjal cubes. Once they are almost cooked, add the ground masala to it and cook on a low-medium flame,covered, for 10 minutes. Add salt as req to this. Once the masala leaves the raw smell, switch off the flame. This dry curry goes excellent with rice and roti..Try it and lemme knw how much u enjoyed it.

      Healthy Veggie Salad



      Ingredients:
      • Carrot
      • Capsicum
      • Cucumber
      • Mango
      • Coriander leaves
      • Olives
      • Beans
      • Chickpeas - soak in water overnite and pressure cook for 2 whistles (1/2 cup)
      • Lemon juice - as req
      • salt - as req
      • pepper pdr - as req
      Preparation:

      Finely cut all the veggies. Semi-cook carrot, beans, capsicum. Mix all the veggies, chickpeas. Add lemon juice, salt and pepper as req. Garnish with some coriander leaves. To this healthy salad, you can also make a small twist. Wanna knw hw...add some ginger or lemon or mango pickle (very lil...juz the pickle alone).

      Dec 16, 2009

      Non-Spicy Mushroom Pulao

      Ingredients:
      • Basmati Rice - 2 cups
      • Butter - 1 tbsp
      • Whole garam masala - as req
      • Onion - 1
      • capsicum - 1/2 of a medium, cut as julienne
      • Mushrooms - 1 cup
      • salt - as req
      • pepper pdr - as req
      • soy sauce - 1 tsp
      • balsamic vinegar - less than a tsp
      • spring onions and coriander leaves for garnish
      • cashews - as req

      Preparation:

      Presoak rice in water for 10 mins. In a wide pan, add lil butter or ghee. To this add whole garam masala (cloves, cardamom, bay leaf), cashews and finely chopped onion (1/4 of a large onion). Saute it for sometime and then add already presoaked rice. To this add water ( 1 cup rice : 1.5 cup water). Let it cook. Once cooked, cool it and set aside.

      In another pan, add onion cut as julienne (1/4 of a large onion). Add capsicum. Saute both till onion turns golden brown. Now add the mushrooms. Saute for 2 minutes. Then add salt, pepper and some soy sauce, balsamic vinegar(careful juz add less than 1 tsp). Add the cooked rice to this. Mix well. Garnish with some spring onions and coriander leaves.

      How gud is this going to be....hmm...well, i the dish scored 9/10 from hubby dear...trust me, tatz nt an easy score :)

      Dec 15, 2009

      Chettinad Mushroom

      Ingredients:
      • Channa dhal - 1 tbsp
      • Peppercorns - 2 tsp
      • Dry red chillies - 2 or 3 nos
      • Oil - as needed
      • Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
      • Curry leaves
      • Mushroom - 1 cup
      • salt - as req
      • Tamarind paste - 1/2 tsp
      • Cilantro - for garnishing
      Preparation:

      Dry roast channa dhal + peppercorns + dry red chillies. Cool it and grind it to a fine powder.
      In a pan, add oil + mustard seeds + curry leaves. When the seeds pop, add mushroom, req amt of salt (mushroom needs less salt than usual) + already made spice powder + tamarind paste. Cook it till it leaves oil and then garnish with some coriander leaves.

      Raw plantain peel fry



      Quick Hi n a Quick Recipe :)  -

      I knw...I knw...I knw :D Guess wat I knw..."I'm an irregular student to my dear most blogging school" :(               
                       Apologies for staying away from you all for the past couple of months...and special thanks to Gaays for her thoughtful blog anniversary wishes, for sharing her yummy recipes inspite of my absence, for being such a chweet friend and for also missing me :) I also missed u soooooooo much Gaays....As usual, everytime I get a reason and this time itz gonna be sure a special one cos it includes my india trip...Yeah, had a blast back in India for some time and here I am... fully exhausted and tired(hahaha....did u expect me to say "back in form")  Pulling those words from my mouth is gonna be really tough for a while :)
                       If I start my notes on India trip, then I wud end up being all sober again...So for heaven's sake letz catch up with some quick recipe my fellow blogmates...To start with, I'm gonna use something which I have considered to be a waste for years...Never knew that someone cud make a dish out of it....Got this recipe from my mom...No justice if I don't share it with u...So here it is !!!

      Watz the secret ingredient....Raw Plantain "Peel"...Yeah, u heard it rite...this was quite new for me...hope it wud be for some of you too...if itz nt, then I accept tat I am the dumb one ;)


      Ingredients:
      • Raw Plantain peel - 1 ( cut as juliennes)
      • Salt and pepper – as req 
      • Vadakam - for tempering
      • Oil - as req
      • Turmeric pdr - a pinch

      Preparation:

      First cook the raw plantain peel in warm water after adding lil salt and turmeric pdr to it. I microwaved it for 7 mins. In a pan , add oil. Once itz hot add the vadakam. You can also substitute this with mustard seeds + urad dhal or even juz skip the tempering. After tempering add the cooked peels (after draining water) to oil and saute till it turnes 75% dark and crispy. When it is getting sauteed you can add pepper pdr and salt as req to it. Crispy raw plantain peel fry is ready to be served with hot rice. Enjoy !!!!

      Chegodilu / Chekodi

      Before starting with the recipe ... I have taken a long break from posting recipes ...as I said earlier , I was held up in house shifting and then for more than 10 days no internet connection , meanwhile we decided to go to Egypt and I was held up in that work ...we enjoyed well in Egypt ,we had a good escape from this winter for atleast 6 days ... though my son did not like the trip much ... it was a good break for us ...and I am back ..and expecting my dear friend / sister ...Kavitha to come back to blogging work soon ...as I am missing her a lot ...now to the recipe.

      The recipe chosen for november month in Indian cooking challenge by Srivalli is Chegodilu / chekodi .. in Tamil it is called as Kola vadai ...I have to say that the recipe came out very cripsy and my son enjoyed it a lot . I chose the second method :

      Chegodilu - Recipe 2 :



      Ingredients:
      1. Rice flour - 3/4 cup
      2. All purpose flour/ Maida - 1/4 cup
      3. Ghee - 2 tbsp
      4. Ajwain - 1/4 tsp
      5. Red chilli powder - 1/4 tsp
      6. Turmeric really a pinch
      7. Salt as per taste
      8. Oil to deep fry
        Method : 

        Boil 1 cup water in a bowl, add salt to it. When the water starts boiling, remove from stove, add ajwain, red chilli powder, turmeric and flours. Stir with a ladle to make sure it is mixed well. Pour ghee on it and cover. Once it cools, knead it to form smooth dough. Pinch out small balls of dough and roll them like threads between your palm, bring the ends together to form into small rings . Fry them in hot oil til they turn golden in colour . Check if the oil is in the correct temperature, by dropping a tiny bit into the oil. Then gently slide the rings or the chakodis in batches of 4 -5. The flame has to be on high until the chakodis come up to the surface, then lower the flame to medium and cook till you get a golden colour on the chakodis. When the chakodis are golden all over, using a slotted ladle, remove to a kitchen towel and cool. Store in an air tight container for longer shelf life.
          Notes: These should not be cooked on low flame as they will absorb more oil and can turn soggy also at times.

          Nov 11, 2009

          Milk Peda ~~ Blog First Anniversary


          Join with me in wishing Kavitha , on her blog's first anniversary.We all are missing you kavitha ... Hope to see you to blogging sphere very soon ... I am happy that , I was able to help her in blog work ..though not in full extent ....
          On behalf of Kavitha , I thank all friends for all your wonderful support and encouragement and helping us in continuing with the blog work ...as a special day today will share with you all Milk Peda recipe. 

          Got the recipe from here check this video for the recipe.

          Ingredients needed :
          • Paneer - 3/4 cup
          • Milk Powder - 3/4 cup
          • Milk - 3/4 cup
          • Sugar - 1/2 cup
          • Butter - 3 tsp.
          • Cardamon powder - little
          For Garnishing :
          • Sliced Pistachios or Cashews or Badam 

          Method :

                      Heat a pan and melt butter and keep flame in low and add milk powder + milk and mix it well and cook it till it gets thick consistency keep stirring it continuously then transfer it to bowl and allow it to cool completely ..

          once cooled , you get the crumbled textured to this add elachi powder and sugar and mix it well and then take small portion and make soft balls and then flatten it and place pistachio / cashew / badam piece in the centre and serve it ... 

          Nov 2, 2009

          Cabbage Kofta Curry

          Ingredients :
          • Cabbage - ½ Cup
          • Onions - 2
          • Tomatoes - 3 or 4
          • peas - little (optional)
          • Chilli powder - little
          • Salt - little
          • Ginger and garlic paste - 2 tsp.
          • Maida 3 tablespoon
          • Cornflour 2 tablespoon
          • Oil - for deep frying


          Method :

          For making koftas :

          Chop the cabbage finely. Mix maida, corn flour , salt and add little water and mix until it has a paste like consistency. Add the chopped cabbage . Make it into small balls and deep fry in oil into golden brown colour .
            For making gravy :

            Chop onions and tomatoes into fine pieces take a pan, add oil, add ginger garlic paste , add onions and fry till golden brown. Add the tomato , peas , chilli powder, add water little if u need it like a gravy ...add little salt and allow it to cook until oil separates. Now add the cabbage koftas and cook in simmer for 5 minutes . Garnish with coriander leaves ..

              Oct 31, 2009

              Gulab Jamun

              Gulab Jamuns is the recipe chosen for the month of October by Srivalli at Indian Cooking Challenge .




              Makes: around 25 jamuns


              Ingredients :

              • Khova – 11/2 cups
              • Maida – 1 cup
              • Sugar – 3 cups (if you want excess syrup i.e floating jamuns increase by a cup)
              • Water – 1 cup (increase if you’re increasing sugar)
              • Cooking Soda – 3 pinches
              • Cardamom – 4 pods
              • Saffron leaves – a few
              • Oil – 1 cup (for deep frying)

              Method :

              For Making Khova :


              For Making Jamuns :

              1. Combine sugar and water in a flat bottomed broad pan and simmer on a low heat until sugar dissolves. Add cardamom powder and saffron leaves and remove from fire.

              2. Knead khova, maida and soda and quickly shape into balls.

              3. Heat oil on a medium flame. Fry the jamuns till golden brown over a low to medium flame, keeping oil temperature uniform. Oil should not smoke.

              4. Drain the jamuns and soak in the warm sugar syrup.

              Serve the jamuns after half an hour.

              Tips:

              You will achieve correct consistency for jamun syrup when 3 cups of sugar dissolves 1 cup water over low heat. Only when the syrup is ready, mix the jamun dough. Since the dough has soda, if its kept aside the jamuns will disperse while frying and will not hold well. Right temperature of oil of utmost importance to get soft jamuns.Never refrigerate jamuns. Jamuns when refrigerated will shrink and become hard. Jamuns will stay fresh for 4 days when stored in air tight containers. If you like you can add two drops of rose essence to the syrup to make it Gulab jamun.

              Ps. : I tried my level best to make it to perfect shape . My son wanted Gulab Jamuns in this orange colour ....so had no other option but to add little orange food colour , which is not in the rule ....

              Oct 28, 2009

              Vegetable Soup


              Ingredients needed :
              • Mixed vegetables (carrots, french beans, cauliflower, mushroom) - finely chopped 2 Cups.
              • finely chopped garlic
              • ¼ cup finely chopped onions
              • 2 tbsp quick cooking rolled oats
              • milk - little
              • salt and pepper to taste
              • oil - little
              • For the garnish - 2 tsp chopped coriander
              Method : 

              Heat the oil in a pan, add the onions and garlic and saute till the onions are translucent. Add the vegetables and saute for a few minutes. Add 2 cups of water , salt and pepper and allow it to boil and simmer till the vegetables are tender. Take a pan and add the oats and little milk and water and boil it for 5 minutes now add the oats mix to the soup and allow it to boil for few mins . Serve hot and if needed garnish with the coriander.

                Oct 13, 2009

                Kuzhi Paniyaram

                Ingredients needed :
                • Raw rice - 1 cup
                • Boiled rice - 1 cup
                • Urid dhal - 1/4 cup
                • Methi seeds - little
                • Salt
                Method : 

                Soak rice ,dhal and methi seeds together for 6 - 8 hours and grind it , same like idli batter by adding required salt and allow it to ferment overnight . Heat kuzhi Paniyaram mould and add little oil on each hole and pour the batter and allow it to cook for few mins, then slowly turn it to the other side and cook it again for few more mins ... your paniyaram is ready ...serve with onion chutney .

                  Oct 10, 2009

                  Mushroom Soup




                  Ingredients :

                  • Mushroom - 2 cups
                  • Milk - 1 cup
                  • Salt & Pepper - little
                  • Corn flour - 2 tsp.



                  Method : 

                  Clean and chop mushroom into small pieces ...take a pan fry it for few mins and then add salt & pepper+  milk and allow it to boil well mix cornflour in little water and dilute it ..once the mushroom is cooked well add cornflour paste ,cook for few mins and switch off the gas and serve hot .

                    Oct 9, 2009

                    Neipayasam


                    Ingredients Needed :
                    • Raw rice - 1/2 cup
                    • Jaggery - 1 cup
                    • Ghee - 1/2 cup
                    • Elachi powder - little
                    • Cashews - 10
                    • Raisins - 10

                    Method :

                    Cook rice and keep it ready . Take a kadai add 1tsp. ghee and fry cashews and raisins and keep it aside ,and in the same kadai add jaggery and half cup water and allow it to dissolve well and boil it or some time ...if needed filter the jaggery liquid , keep the flame in sim and add the cooked rice to the jaggery water and stir well and make sure no lumps are formed ...slowly keep adding little by little ghee and keep stirring well , once the ghee separates , switch off the gas and garnish with fried cashews and raisins.

                    2. Maladu :








                    Sending these entries to Shanghi's FIL - Ghee event :

                    Sep 4, 2009

                    Ceeralam

                    Ingredients :
                    • Idli rice - 1 cup
                    • Toor dhal - 1/2 cup + 1 handful
                    • Ginger - little
                    • Dried Red Chilli or Green chilli- 1
                    • Idli milagai podi - 2 or 3 tsp.
                    • Onions - 2
                    • Corriander leaves
                    • Curry leaves
                    • Mustard seeds , urid dhal , jeera , salt , hing powder , oil - little
                    Method : 

                    Soak Idli rice and toor dhal together for 4 -5 hours then grind it like Adai batter along with ginger + salt + dried red chillies + jeera. Chop onions and corriander leaves finely and then add it to the batter and mix well in oil greased idli plates , pour a ladle batter on the required plates and steam it for 5 -10 mins. Once done , allow it to cool for few mins and cut it into pieces and keep it ready in a kadai add 1 tsp. oil and add mustard seeds + urid dhal + jeera +hing powder + curry leaves and then add the idli pieces + little salt + idli milagai podi and fry well till it gets crispy eat it hot with Tomoto thokku or Red capsicum chutney.
                     

                    Note :
                     

                    Either u can prepare immediately after grinding or u can allow it to ferment overnight while grinding the batter , you can use fennel seeds + garlic if you wish. Do no forget to add onions to the batter before steaming .. only then the ildi will be very soft.

                      Aug 24, 2009

                      Happy Ganesh Chathurthi !!!


                      This blog post is quite a special one cos it holds my celebration recipes of Ganesh Chathurthi...Ganesha has always been my favorite for sweet unknown reasons :) Thou my before-marriage times of Ganesh Chathurthi with my family at home sweet home are always a memorable ocassion...I've never been able to celebrate this occasion all by myself since I got married n settled in US...So this is officially ;) my first Ganesh Chathurthi in US...Hope I did my best n gave full justice to my love towards lord Ganesha..

                      The day started with me rising up early...whoo, wasnt tat really special...n tat too the reason being ..TO COOK :D The dishes I had planned to prepare for the pooja were Kolukattai (both sweet n spicy)...sundal and also sweet pori...Since itz my first try making kolukattai, I had no idea how long it was going to take me to prepare 'em...To get all the boost i needed, wat else did I need than a small talk to my mom in india :) yeah, gave her a call, confirmed the recipes once again n then "shoot-it" :)

                      The dishes turned out much much better than I expected...So with full guarantee here comes the recipes for 'em...

                      SPICY KOLUKATTAI:



                      Ingredients:
                      • Idli rice - 2 cups
                      • oil - 1 tbsp
                      • Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
                      • Channa Dhal - 1 tsp
                      • Urad Dhal - 1 tsp
                      • Onion - 1/2 of medium
                      • Curry leaves - as req
                      • Green chillies or dry red chillies - 2 or 3

                      Preparation:

                      Soak Idli rice in water overnight. Grind it adding very less water.

                      In a wide kadai(pan), add oil + mustard seeds + curry leaves + green or red chillies + onion + channa dhal + urad dhal + salt and saute till the onion becomes translucent. Then add the ground idli rice batter to this and keep stirring it well till it becomes like a ball. It should round up to an almost ball consistency(similar to the chapathi dough consistency). Then switch off the flame.

                      When it slightly hot, make round balls out of the dough and press it with ur fingers to make it into kolukattai shape or you can also make it to any shape of ur choice.

                      Spicy Kolukkatis are ready !!!

                      I have already blogged my sundal recipe... and for Sweet Kolukattai recipe, check here .

                      So tatz it...Happy Vinayaka Chathurthi to all !!!

                      Sweet kolukattai

                      Ingredients:
                      • Channa Dhal - cooked for 3 whistles - 1/2 cup
                      • Grated coconut - dry roasted - 1/4 cup
                      • Well mashed jaggery - 1/2 cup
                      • cardamom pdr - 1 tsp
                      • Rice flour - 1.5 cups approximately
                      Preparation: 

                      Grind the cooked channa dhal in mixie without adding any water. In a pan, add the well mashed jaggery + very lil water and allow it to boil. When the jaggery starts to boil (make sure there is no lumps in the jaggery) + add ground cooked channa dhal and roasted grated coconut(we roast it to remove the water from the coconut). Also add some cardamom pdr. Stir it till it becomes thick and loses all the water in it.
                        This is called the pooranam which is going to be used as a stuffing inside our sweet kolukattai. Next, coming to the kolukattai preparation....Boil some water(about 2 cups) in a wide pan. To this add rice flour slowly, stirring will you add it. At a certain point, you will notice that the rice flour starts to get thick. This is where you stop adding rice flour. Add some oil (1 tbsp) to this now and keep stirring this mixture for another couple of minutes. Stir it until it becomes like a thick dough and you should be able to make round balls out of it.

                        Take a plastic sheet and spray some oil on it. Then make round balls from the dough and spread them as a circle on the plastic sheet. Fill it with already prepared "pooranam" and fold it to a semi circle in the form of a kolukattai.


                        Yummy, all time fav, sweet kolukattai are ready !!!

                        Aug 17, 2009

                        Kung Pao Chicken



                        Ingredients:
                        • Chicken breast - cut into small pieces (make sure that there is no bone in the chicken pieces)
                        • cornstarch - 1 tbsp
                        • sesame oil - 1 tbsp
                        • peanuts - 1/4 cup
                        • green onions - as req
                        • garlic - 4 pods
                        • ginger - 1 inch
                        • red pepper flakes - 2 tsp (change it as per ur spice level)
                        • vinegar - 2 tbsp
                        • soysauce - 2 tbsp
                        • sugar - 2 tsp
                        • salt - a pinch

                        Preparation:

                        Combine Chicken and cornstarch. Make sure the cornstarch gets well coated on the chicken pieces. Heat sesame oil in a deep non-stick pan to medium heat. Add chicken and stir fry for 10 minutes on low medium flame. Make sure the chicken is well cooked, that is, the inside of the chicken should no longer be pink. Once well cooked, remove it and set aside.
                        In the same pan, peanuts. Once it is well roasted, add green onions + finely chopped garlic pods + finely chopped ginger + red pepper flakes and stir fry for a minute. Combine vinegar and soysauce with lil sugar and salt in a separate bowl. Taste it to make sure that it suits ur tastebuds. Add this sauce to the pan and also it to cook for a minute. Then add the already cooked chicken to the pan and toss it well to coat it with the sauce. Cook for another couple of minutes.

                        Aug 10, 2009

                        Marinated Mutton Curry


                        Ingredients:
                        • Mutton - 10 pieces
                        • Turmeric pdr - 1/4 tsp
                        • Red Chilli pdr - 1 tsp
                        • Mutton masala curry - 1 tsp
                        • salt - as req
                        • garam masala - 1/2 tsp
                        • yogurt - 1 tbsp
                        • egg - well beaten - 1
                        • ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
                        • coriander leaves for garnish
                        • curry leaves - as req
                        • onion - 1 small
                        • tomato - 1 medium

                        Preparation:

                        Marinate mutton in turmeric pdr + red chilli pdr + any mutton masala curry pdr + salt + garam masala + yogurt + well beaten egg + ginger garlic paste. Allow this to marinate to atleast half an hour.
                        Heat oil in a pan. In heated oil, add whole garam masala + curry leaves + onion. Saute onion till it turns golden brown. Then add tomatoes to this and saute till itz completely mushy. Finally add the marinated mutton. Adjust the salt and add very lil water if necessary. Close the pan and allow it to cook in low medium flame really well. Cook till the oil separates. Make sure that you saute in between at 5 minutes break so that it does not burn. After the meat gets cooked, switch off the flame. Garnish with coriander leaves.


                        Aug 5, 2009

                        Adai



                        Preparation:


                        Tur Dhal (1/2 cup) + Idli rice ( 1 cup) + Channa Dhal (1/4 cup) + Green gram dhal (1/2 handful) + Pacharisi (raw rice - 1/4 cup) --> Soak all this in water overnight.

                        Then grind it with cumin seeds (2 tsp) + dry red chillies (2 or change as req).

                        Temper some onion + tomato + ulutham parupu (black gram dhal) in oil. Add this to the ground batter. Mix salt and water as req to the batter. Make sure it is not too thin consistency. Pour it like a dosa in the griddle. Enjoy ur adai when it is hot. Any chutney would be a lovely combination to this...feeling lazy to prepare a chutney...No worries..cos itz gr8 without a side dish too...

                        Jul 28, 2009

                        Semiya Payasam



                        This recipe is SUPER SPECIAL not juz for the reason it being a sweet but also cos I got this recipe from hubby dear...to add, not juz the recipe, he prepared it for me last weekend :) Loved it juz like I love my hubby with all my heart...Cooking tastes superb when it is prepared by someone else and all you have to do is juz sit and taste :) and it becomes super delicious when it is prepared by ur hubby himself :D ...Thanks darl...You made my day....again !!! Here comes the HUBBY SPECIAL SEMIYA PAYASAM ;) ..Trust me, it tastes heavenly wen ur hubby prepares it for u ;)

                        Ingredients:
                        • Vermicelli (Semiya) - 3/4 cup 
                        • Milk - 1 cup
                        • Water -2 cups
                        • Sugar - 1.5 cups
                        • Ghee - 1 tbsp
                        • cardamom pdr - a pinch (or change as req)
                        • cashews - as req
                        • Raisins - as req

                        Preparation:

                        Roast the vermicelli in ghee. To one cup of milk add 2 cups of water + 1.5 cups of sugar and boil well. Once the milk boils and thickens add the roasted vermicelli. Add cardamom pdr as required. I usually add a pinch of it.

                        In another pan, add ghee cashewnuts + raisins. Saute them for a while and then add them to the payasam.

                        Simple Semiya Payasam is ready to be served. You can serve it both hot and cold.

                        Jul 23, 2009

                        Baked Masala Peanuts



                        Preheat the oven to 450F.

                        Mix all the spices like red chilli pdr, coriander pdr, cumin pdr, turmeric pdr, garam masala, salt (you can vary this as per ur taste) using lil water to make a paste. Apply this paste to the Peanuts. Spray some cooking oil to it and then allow it to marinate for 5 mins.

                        Then on a baking sheet, apply some oil and spread the masala marinated peanuts on to the plate. Bake it for 20 mins. Make sure you toss the peanuts halfway. After 20 minutes, switch off the oven. Remove the plate from the oven and allow it to cool for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, itz time to taste the yummy peanuts :)

                        This is one of those, easy to make yet yummy to taste snacks....So don't fail to give it a try...

                        Eggy Onion Curry

                        Ingredients:
                        • Onion - 1 Big
                        • Broken Urad Dhal - 1/4 cup
                        • Dry Red Chillies - 3
                        • Tamarind paste - 1/2 tsp
                        • Salt to taste.
                        • Oil
                        • Curry Leaves
                        • Turmeric pdr - 1/4 tsp
                        • Frozen Peas - 1/2 cup
                        • Boiled eggs - 2 ( or as req)
                        Preparation:

                        In a pan, add oil. When oil is hot add mustard seeds + curry leaves + finely chopped onion. Once the onion changes color add lil turmeric pdr. Switch off the flame and set aside to cool.
                        In the same pan, add a tsp of oil, urad dhal + red chillies and curry leaves. Saute till the dhal changes color and then switch off the flame. Once cool, grind it well. Add salt, tamarind paste and the sauteed onion mixture and grind well to an almost smooth paste.
                        To the pan, add some oil + ground onion paste + frozen peas and saute it well. Cook really well. The more you cook, the more the taste. Juz couple of minutes before you switch off the flame, stir in the already boiled slit eggs to the curry.
                        Goes excellent with dosa, idli, roti and poori. Also this is a best option to take when you travel. You can skip the egg if u want to in this recipe.

                        Jul 22, 2009

                        Potato Masal ~ Type 2


                        Preparation:


                        oil + onion (1 medium) + capsicum(as req) + chilli paste (1 tsp) + tomato (2 medium) + turmeric pdr (1/4 tsp) + well beaten curd (1tbsp) + salt (as req) + frozen green peas (as req) + boiled potato (3 medium) + water (1/2 cup) + garam masala (1/4 tsp) + kasthuri methi ( 1tsp)+ coriander leaves (for garnish).

                        Jul 20, 2009

                        Chenna masala - type 2


                        Ingredients:
                        • Oil - as req
                        • Sombhu - 1 tsp
                        • Curry leaves - 7 or 8
                        • Onion - 1 medium
                        • Ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
                        • Green chilli - add vertically slit chillies - 2
                        • Tomato - 2 medium
                        • Red chilli pdr - 1 tbsp
                        • Turmeric pdr - 1/4 tsp
                        • Coriander pdr - 1/2 tbsp
                        • salt - as req
                        • Garam masala - 1/2 tsp
                        • curd - 1 cup (well beaten)
                        • Boiled channa - 1 cup
                        • Tamarind paste - 1tsp
                        • Coriander leaves - as req

                        Preparation:

                        soak chenna overnite and then cook it for 3 whistles.

                        In a pan, add oil + sombhu + curry leaves + onion. Saute till brown. Then add gg paste + green chilli + tomato. Saute this till mushy + red chilli pdr + turmeric pdr + coriander pdr + garam masala + curd + coriander leaves + salt + grind one handful of boiled channa and add it now + remaining boiled channa + water + if needed add tamarind paste (opt). garnish with some coriander leaves.

                        Jul 18, 2009

                        Cantaloupe Agua Fresca (Mexican Delight)


                        Ingredients:
                        • 4 cups diced, peeled ripe watermelon or cantaloupe
                        • 3 cups water
                        • 2 to 3 teaspoons fresh lime juice
                        • 1 tablespoon sugar
                        Preparation:


                        Blend together cantaloupe with 1 1/2 cups of the water, the lime juice and the sugar at high speed until smooth. Strain through a medium strainer into a large pitcher or bowl. Stir in the remaining water. Refrigerate for 1 hour or longer. Fill a glass with ice, pour in the agua fresca, garnish with a mint sprig, and serve.

                        Yield: Four servings.

                        Variations:

                        * Stir an additional cup of finely chopped fruit into the strained blended drink      and refrigerate for 1 hour or longer.
                        * For the watermelon version, add 4 hulled strawberries.
                        * Mango or Pineapple Agua Fresca: substitute mango or pineapple for the          melon.

                        Omelette Bags



                        In a ziplock bag, break ur egg(I used 2 eggs) and add watever u need to spice it up (I used finely chopped onion, capsicum, coriander leaves, green chilli, grated cheese, turmeric pdr, curry pdr, chilli pdr, garam masala)....Mix everything well....Boil the ziplock bag in water for 15 mins and then take out the egg....ur omlette bags r ready :) Itz as easy as tat...juz another fun way to make omlettes....v loved the difference...

                        Jul 16, 2009

                        Mutton Soup


                        Ingredients:

                        Pearl onions or shallots - 15 (You can replace this with half of a medium red onion)
                        Tomato - 1
                        cumin seeds - 1 tsp
                        Saunf seeds - 1 tsp
                        peppercorns - 10
                        Mutton - bone pieces preferred
                        Water - as req
                        salt - as req
                        corriander leaves
                        Garlic pods - 4
                        Turmeric pdr - a pinch

                        Preparation:

                        Grind (obviously peeled) pearl onions (or shallots) + Tomato + Cumin seeds + Saunf seeds + Peppercorns + Garlic pods + turmeric pdr
                        Mix this grinded mixture with Mutton (bone preferred), req amount of water (depends juz how much of soup you want) + salt + corriander leaves. Pressure cook this for 2 whistles, keep it on low flame for 1 minute and then switch off the flame.

                        Remove the Mutton pieces from the soup. Adjust the pepper and salt in the soup as req. Serve them in soup bowls really hot for the best taste.

                        Optional:

                        I had some egg whites alone....I fried it in pan like Egg Burji and added it to the soup. Also garnish with some coriander leaves and croutons.

                        Ponnangani keerai sambhar





                        The Botanical name of this greens is 'Alternanthera sessilis'. Sanskrit name is Matsyakshi. The common English name is Dwarf copperleaf/ Joyweed/ Sessile joyweed. Well...we call that "Ponanganni keerai" in Tamil. It is body coolant. It gradually induces a change, and restores healthy functions without evacuations (Alterative). Specifically recommended in the case of - - Fever - Eye ailments - Asthma - Gonorrhea - Syphilis . It improves eye sight! As the name implies it improves one's complexion! People say its good for Piles complaint and reduces flabbiness. 

                        Source : http://www.ammas.com/topics/Cooking/a157400.html







                        Ingredients Needed :
                        • Ponnangani Keerai - 1 bunch
                        • Small Onions - 10 - 15
                        • Cooked Moong dhal - 1/2 cup
                        • Tamarind juice - little (or)
                        • Tomatoes - 2 
                        • Sambhar powder - as reqd.
                        • Salt - as reqd.
                        • Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp
                        • Urid dhal - 1/4 tsp
                        • Methi seeds - 1/4 tsp
                        • Hing powder - 1/4 tsp
                        • Oil - 2 tsp.

                        Method :

                                              Clean and remove the leaves from the stem and keep it aside ..(this was bit tedious job , but still as it is good for health ...we have to do it) 

                        In a Kadai Oil and temper with mustard seed + urid dhal +methi seeds + hing powder+ Small onions and fry well for few mins , then add the ponnangani keerai and fry for few more mins..now add tamarind juice or Chopped tomatoes + salt + sambhar powder and allow it to boil well then add cooked moong dhal and boil it for few more mins till done.  Once it gets thicker , switch off the gas.

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