Sep 30, 2008

Zucchini Bread recipe

zucchini bread After baking the buns last time, I was a little disappointed because of the crust. And somehow I could not gather courage to play with the yeast again. I had bought a zucchini almost a week ago. This was the first time I bought it as it is not so common here and I was browsing for a recipe. I came upon this Shilpa's(aayis recipes) zucchini bread and I was tempted to try this. Indeed, bread baking is certainly addictive. So I went ahead with the recipe and it came out really good this time.It tasted delicious and was quite soft too. I just made minor changes to the recipe.

Plain flour- 1cup
wheat flour- 1cup
Zucchini - 1 cup grated
ginger - 1tsp grated
instant dry yeast- 1 envelope
Sugar- 1tsp
salt- 1/2tsp
Vegetable oil to grease a vessel

Heat a little water. It should be lukewarm. Add yeast, sugar and salt and leave for 10 minutes for frothing. Meanwhile combine rest of the ingredients. Add the yeast mixture and knead into a smooth dough. Use more water or flour if necessary. Grease a big vessel with oil and keep the dough for rising for 2 hours. Then press the dough and knead again and then keep in a oven proof dish giving the dough a desired shape. Let it rise for another 30 minutes. I sprinkled some sesame seeds on it. Its purely optional.
Bake in a preheated oven for 30 minutes or till baked.
zucchini bread Navarathri starts today, so wishing you all a very "Happy navrathri. " Hoping to post navratri sundals and other prasadams for the next few days. Next 10 days will be quite busy for me. I have a get together at home too. So no baking and time consuming recipes. So do have a great time and enjoy yourselves and keep visiting for simple yummy recipes.
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Sep 28, 2008

Nellikai thokku/gooseberry pickle

I was doubtful whether I could send my entry for the AFAM-gooseberry this month. Gooseberries are available only in the Indian stores and I had no plans and time to go to the stores this month. I looked for them in other local shops,but could not find them. But due to some reasons, I had to go to Mustafa(Indian shop) and could get the gooseberries. I had never tried making anything with gooseberries.
I was wondering what to make with them. I was very fond of Awle ka murabba, my mom had made once. I had also tasted awla supari (a flavoured mouth freshner),one of my very friendly neighbours used to make during the summer seasons. It was chopped into small pieces and appropriate spices were added to it and then dried under the hot sun. It tasted fantastic.Then another thing I really enjoyed was awla tea or juice which was available at certain places only in the morning. We used to have it after a brisk morning walk and it tasted divine.
My hubby asked me to make gooseberry jam. But I was apprehensive about making it. I did not want to waste the gooseberries which I managed to buy just in time. I browsed for many recipes and found thokku easy and interesting and useful too as it goes well with curd rice,dosas and chapatis. So here's the recipe.
nellikai thokku

Gooseberries- 250g
Oil- 1/2 cup
Mustard- 1tsp
Fenugreek seeds- 1/2tsp
Asafoetida- a pinch
Turmeric powder- 1/2tsp
Chilly powder- 2tsp
Salt -1tbspn

Cook the gooseberries in a pressure cooker till soft.
Remove the seeds and skin and slice into small pieces. Add half of the oil in a pan. Add mustard, fenugreek seeds and asafoetida.
Add the Gooseberries. Add turmeric powder,chilly powder and salt. Mix well.
Keep mashing it with your potato masher .
Keep stirring till it becomes a thick paste.
Add the remaining oil and cook for another 10 minutes.
Keep stirring taking care it does not burn at the bottom.
Remove from flame.
Store in a clean sterilized glass container.

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Sep 25, 2008

How to make Carrot halwa/pudding/gajar ka halwa -- with condensed milk-- Indian sweets and dessert recipe

        Carrot halwa was one of the very first desserts I had learned to make from my mom. Her recipe was slightly different. I have made so many times by now that I have learned to perfect the recipe each time I make.I once made a huge quantity for a friends party and everyone loved it.  Its a dessert with which you can impress your guests and its actually very easy to make as well. Its a little time consuming especially when it comes to grating the carrots, but its worth the time.
Carrots- 500gms
Milk- 500ml
Condensed milk- 250ml or 1 cup
Sugar- 200-250gms.(add according to sweetness you prefer as you are adding condensed milk which is also sweet.)
Cashewnuts - 4-5 chopped
Ghee- 1tsp(optional,if you find it too sticky)

Grate the carrots.
Heat little ghee in pan.
Roast the cashews till they are golden brown.
Remove them and keep aside till use.
Add the grated carrots in the same pan.
Saute for 2-3 minutes in medium flame.
Add the milk.
Keep stirring till the carrots cook well and the milk is totally absorbed.
Then add the sugar and condensed milk and keep stirring till it thickens.
This will take around 30 minutes.
Garnish with the cashews.
You can serve it hot .
You can also chill and serve with vanilla ice cream.
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Sep 23, 2008

Adai- Mixed dal dosa

adai/mixed dal dosa I love adais from the very beginning and my mom used to make it for dinner.It used to taste delicious with butter and jaggery. Though I never learned to make them. After getting married I learnt that it was my hubby's favourite too. So I browsed for the recipe in the net and made for him. It definitely tasted good , but yet was not upto the mark and he said that his cousin made the best adais. So I asked her the next time we met and took some tips from her. Now ,this is a regular thing at my place and of course now he says that mine is the best.hehe:)) Though adais has usually three dals in it, I add all the dals for a different taste and also good on the healthier side.
After coming to singapore, I came to know that aviyal is a good combination with adais. Adai - Aviyal is a very popular in the Indian restaurants here. And yes indeed, the combo is really good.
Rice- 2 cups
Chana dal- 1/2cup
Tuvar dal- 1/2cup
Udid dal- 1/2cup
Mung(green)- 1/2cup
Masur dal- 1/4 cup
Dried red chillies- 4 -5
Asafoetida- a pinch
Salt- to taste
Curry leaves- 4 to 5 leaves cut to small pieces
Clean and soak the rice and dals seperately for around 4 hours. Grind the dals into a coarse paste(it should not be very smooth). Then grind the rice along with red chillies into a smooth paste. Mix the ground dals and rice mixture.Add asafoetida,salt and curry leaves. Mix well.You can make this immediately. The batter should be of dosa batter consistency.
On a dosa tava, pour the batter and spread it. Add oil on the sides. Cook on one side and then turn it and cook on the other side.
Serve hot with aviyal or butter or Jaggery.
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Sep 22, 2008

Bhappa Doi - A Bengali sweet

bhappa doi I am very fond of Bengali sweets. And there are a list of other sweets like rasmalai , rasgulla ,sandesh, pantooa which I have been wating to try for a very long time and am going to try them soon. I made this bhappa doi which is also a Benagali sweet. It is basically steamed sweet curds. In this, condensed milk along with curds is taken in a mould , covered with a foil and steamed in a vessel containing boiling hot water for about 20 minutes.
But I saw in Tarla dalal's cookbook that it could even be microwaved. So I decided to follow the microwave version.
It tasted really delicious, something very similar to shrikand.

Sweetened condensed milk- 1 cup
Curd/yogurt- 1cup
Almond/pistachios for garnishing

Mix the condensed milk and curd and mix well. Make sure there are no lumps.
Microwave this mixture for 1 minute and stand time for another 3 minutes.
Keep this in a refrigerator. Chill and then garnish with saffron, almonds and pistachios before serving.sweetened curd
I am sending this to LG who is hosting SWC- Bengal this month.
This also goes to mythreyee's sweet series where the theme is steamed/deep fried sweets.
Do have a look at temple of heaven in my craft blog.
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Sep 21, 2008

Temple of heaven- Woodcraft

This is made from pieces of wood from a woodcraft construction kit I bought from the popular book shop more than six months ago. Somehow I kept on postponing it. It seemed to be very easy. Of course, it is easy, but you have to have lot of patience, I think. I started with great enthusiasm and it was taking a good shape, but during the final construction, the pieces kept on falling. I lost my patience and kept it back and somehow I never brought myself to complete it.Finally, today my hubby said he will help me with this and we decided to complete it. It looks so elegant that it is certainly worth the patience and efforts you put into it.

I am also planning to colour it. Will update the post with the painted pictures when I do it and if I do it!!!
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Sep 19, 2008

How to make Aviyal--South Indian mixed vegetable side dish recipe

      As many of them know that I hated cooking before marriage. Though I had made few north Indian cuisines , I never ventured on trying south Indian food. After marriage, my hubby who had not explored much of the north indian cuisines enjoyed the north indian food made by me. But I decided to learn some popular south Indian food. There were very few south indian dishes I liked, aviyal was one of them. I learned making this during my initial (trial and errors)days of cooking. And this was one dish which used to come out really well and hubby liked it too. Of course, now I enjoy cooking as well as eating most of the south indian food. I remember a funny incident too , that was when I was learning to cook south Indian food. Once I had made sambar ( so called,because I had added sambar powder in it), but it was so dilute that my hubby(who encouraged me always) when he came from office that day said "rasam was good today" and I told him with disappointment that it was sambar and not rasam. :((
As this is a popular dish in Kerala as well as Tamilnadu,there are various ways people make it . So here's how I make it.

Mixed vegetables-I used 4 potatoes, 2carrots, french beans, Peas. You can also add cauliflower, Cluster beans, broad beans, winter melon, pumpkin. Do add drumsticks, I did not get it.
Tamarind pulp- 1tbspn
Salt- to taste
Turmeric powder- 1tsp(optional)
Asafoetida- A pinch
Grated coconut- 1cup
Jeera- 1tsp
Green chillies- 3
Curry leaves- a few
Coconut oil- few drops

Cut the vegetables into long slices( lengthwise). Boil them in a tamarind water along with salt and turmeric powder and asafoetida. Cook well.
Combine coconut gratings, Jeera and chillies in a blender and grind into a smooth paste.
Add this and curry leaves to the cooked vegetables. Cook till everything mixes well into a thick consistency. Add the curd. Mix well.
Sprinkle little coconut oil on the top.Serve hot with rice and dal

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Sep 18, 2008

Orange chutney/pickle!!

orange chutney I have been craving for a particular taste and it will be very difficult for me to explain that. It was a kind of spicy, tangy and sour taste. And that is how this orange chutney or pickle came into existence. I had one orange sitting in my fridge for a long time. I was not sure what to do with it. Suddenly yesterday when I wanted something which would taste as I have mentioned above , I thought why not a pickle. So after some browsing, I did find some interesting recipes. I found most of the recipes included pieces of apples. So I decided to put together all the ingredients and add some to meet the requirement of my taste buds and made this one. Yummy..I loved it. And next time, I plan to make this in a bulk. This is how I made.

Orange- 1 (Peeled,deseeded and chopped into small pieces)
Apple- 1 small(peeled and chopped into small pieces)
Raisins- 1tbspn
Brown sugar-1tbsp
Turmeric powder- A pinch
Chilly powder- 1tsp
All spice powder- 1tsp
Cinnamon powder-1/2tsp
Mustard- 1tsp
Fenugreek seeds- 1/2tsp
Salt to taste
Oil- 2tsp

Heat the oil in a pan. Add mustard and fenugreek seeds. Then add the pieces of orange, apple and raisins.Mix well and keep stirring. Then add brown sugar and rest of the spices. Keep on stirring till everything mixes well and the fruits get cooked properly. It should become thick and gooey mass. Allow to cool. Goes well with chapatis.

Usha of veg inspirations has passed me the wonderful "Arte Y Pico "award. Thanks a lot Usha. There are few rules. The rules of the award are:
1. Choose five blogs you consider deserving of this award. (Creativity, interesting material, etc.)
2. Each award includes the name of the owner of the blog and his/her link.
3. Each award winner has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given her or him the award itself.
4. Award winner and the one who has given the prize have to show the link of “Arte y Pico” blog, so everyone will know the origin of this award.
I would love to pass the award to Priti, Priyanka,Sireesha,Jayashree, Sukanya.
Priti of Indian khana who has always inspired me with her beautiful comments, has passed me the "Perfect blend of friendship Award". Thanks priti. I always cherish our friendship.(See the picture in the awards link in sidebar.)
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Sep 16, 2008

Eggless banana muesli cake (A Healthy version)

healthy eggless cake I actually did not know how to name the cake. Baking a cake with with scratch has become a regular thing. And if I have over riped banana, it sure goes into my cake. And I don't have eggs and butter most of the times. So its just with what is available with me.
Nowadays, my son has started throwing tantrums while eating. I try to feed him so many varieties, try to distract him with cartoons, music, nothing seems to work, but he refuses everything without even tasting it. I really get stressed out sometimes.
I am sure this is not new to most of the mothers. I have heard most of them complaining. And few of my friends even gave me some tips and tricks to overcome this problem. Its really tough to make kids eat.
Actually the thing is, I got a packet of muesli hoping he likes it for his breakfast, but no, he did not. So, that too was thrown into my cake, convincing myself atleast he will eat the cake!!! Here's the recipe I used.

Plain flour- 1 1/2 cup
Wheat flour-1/2 cup
Muesli- 1/2 cup
Light brown sugar- 1/2 cup
Vegetable oil- 1/3 cup
Milk- 1cup
Bananas- 1 mashed
Cocoa powder- 2tbspn
Baking powder - 1tsp
Baking soda- 1/2 tsp
Icing sugar

Mix together all the dry ingredients. Then add milk and oil. Mix well so that no lumps are formed. Add the bananas. Its better to add muesli in the end (just fold in the batter) so that the grains remain intact.
Pour in the cake pan. Bake at 180c for 30 minutes in a preheated oven.
Sprinkle icing sugar on the top of the cake.
The cake is not spongy , it is soft and chewy.Tasted good!!
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Sep 15, 2008

How to make Cucumber kadi--- cucumber recipes

cucumber kadi I feel ,whatever we make, the new recipes, the traditional old ones ,though appreciated always, sometimes fails to satisfy the family members , especially when a particular demand is not fulfilled.Everything else made with love loses its value.Oh??You did not understand... Just a thought.
We have to keep on looking for new recipes or modify the old ones so that there is some so called change.
So today , I made this kadi( spicy buttermilk) the usual way, only, thought of adding some cucumber cubes. I have never used cucumber in anything expect in salads and recently in my bhel.
I have seen people adding Dudhi/lauki/bottlegourd in kadi. But cucumber also seemed a great idea and tasted delicious. Everyone loved it and the smile was brought back!!!

Cucumber- 1/2 cut in cubes
Buttermilk - 1 cup diluted to make 2 cups.
Besan/gram dal powder- 1tbspn
Ginger garlic green chilly paste - 2tsp
Bay leaf- 1 small piece
Cinnamon- 1''
Cardamom- 2
Salt to taste
Turmeric powder-1tsp
Asafoetida- a pinch
oil- 1tsp
Mustard- 1tsp
Fenugreek seeds-1/2tsp

After diluting the buttermilk, add besan and mix well. Keep aside.
Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds, jeera, fenugreek seeds and rest of the spices. Then add asafoetida and garlic ginger and green chilly paste.Saute and then add cucumber pieces. Saute well and add turmeric powder and salt and allow the cucumber to cook till tender. Then add the buttermilk and heat for another 4-5 minutes.
Serve with rice, but I love with chapatis too.
Do try , you will fall in love with the taste just like me.
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Sep 13, 2008

The best "Palak paneer" recipe- restaurant style

 I love anything with paneer. Though I wanted to make paneer at home, I somehow never manage to do it and end up buying it in the Indian stores whenever I visit. It happened this time too. But this time I made palak paneer very patiently using maximum ingredients for better taste quality and tried to do a bit differently than my usual procedure. It tasted very good and was over in no time. We all loved it. Indeed this is a restaurant style palak paneer recipe.

Palak- A bunch -washed and chopped
Paneer- 100gms cut in cubes
Onion- 1
Garlic- 1-2 cloves
Cashews- 5
Poppy seeds/khus khus- 1tsp
Sesame seeds/til-1tsp
Coriander powder- 2tsp
garam masala- 2tsp
Salt to taste
Wash and chop palak finely. Boil them in water with a little salt. Blend the palak into a puree.
Then cut the onions into big slices.
 Boil them in water. Then blend it with a garlic clove.
Mix together sesame seeds,cashews,poppy seeds in a bowl and add some hot water. Keep it for around 10 minutes and grind them too.
Now mix all the mixtures(palak, onion and the white paste) together.
Heat oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds. Then add this mixture into it.
Add coriander powder,garam masala and salt and allow it to cook well.
Meanwhile, cut the paneer in cubes and deep fry them till they are slightly golden brown.
Then add the paneer cubes in the palak mixture and cook for another 10 minutes.
Serve hot with rotis.
palak paneer

Below, you can see the picture of moon cakes. They are chinese pastries which are made for the mid autumn chinese festival. They are quite different from the regular cakes. It is basically pastry flour covering with some filling inside. The filling may be lotus stem, yam,sweet potato etc. My hubby received this very attractive box of moon cakes from a chinese colleague of his, so I thought of sharing with you all.
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Sep 11, 2008

Microwave Kasi halwa or Ash gourd halwa- easy microwave dessert recipe

microwave kasi halwa I usually make kootu with ash gourd or winter melon. But I am not too fond of it and buy it very rarely. This time , my hubby bought a big piece of ash gourd and was lying in my refrigerator for quite sometime. I somehow did not feel like making anything with it and was in look out for some new recipe with it. I even asked few of my friends. Actually nowadays we ladies who gather down in the evening for a chat, our conversation is mostly food ,recipes and potlucks and parties. One of my friends asked me to try olan.
And then just yesterday, while browsing, I saw this ashgourd halwa in jayashree's blog. She had posted it yesterday. The colour was so vibrant and recipe seemed to be quite easy, that too using a microwave. I wanted to make it immediately and felt that she had just posted for me!!!
It came out really good, tasted great and was a hit at home.

 Ash gourd(peeled, deseeded and grated) - a small one
Sugar - 1 cup
Red food colour - a pinch
Ghee - 4 tsp
Semolina/rava - 2 tsp

 Microwave ashgourd without adding any water for 8 minutes on high heat till the raw smell goes. Allow it to cool completely. Measure the pulp. I got a little more than 1.5 cups of pulp and used 1 cup of sugar for it. Adjust sugar depending on how much pulp you have left after cooking the gourd.
Combine the cooked gourd, sugar and food colour and microwave on high for 8 minutes. Add 2 tsp of ghee and mix well. Heat for another 6 minutes, checking every now and then to make sure it doesn't become too hard. Roast rava until golden brown in 2 tsp of ghee. Add this to the halwa and heat for one minute. Garnish with sliced cashews or almonds.
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Sep 10, 2008

Tamil recipe index

Being a Tamilian,I thought of sharing some easy and interesting tamil recipes which is a part of daily meals in a south Indian home. This section will be particularly useful for people who are just learning to cook the south cuisine. I have compiled few simple as well as exclusive recipes from Tamil nadu in this section. Just click on the title for the recipe. I will be adding more recipes soon. So keep visiting.

Morkali /morkoozhu
rava idli

Kuzhi paniyaaram
Oats paniyaram  
Vazhaipoo vadai
 Chundal for navrathri  
Masala dosa

 Rava semiya idli  
Puttu and kadalai curry
 Kali and thalaga kozhumbu
Sago idlis  
Set dosa
  Parappu vadai
Masal vadai 
  Vegetable Uthapam
Oats Rava idli
 Kancheepuram Idli
 Ragi idli
Cracked wheat and vegetable idli
Drumstick leaves dosa/murunga ilai dosai
Spongy idlis
Horsegram idlis/Kollu idlis
Arisi upma kozhakattai 
Ulundu vadai/medhu vadai 
Wheat adais 
Brown rice idlis 
Whole masoor dal chundal
Karamani chundal
Pachai payaru/green moong sweet chundal
idli milagai podi upma 
Semiya bagala bhaath 
Oats pongal 
Dried peas pasta chundal 

Pulihora (andhra style) 
Lime rice
Bisi Bela Bhaat
Ellu sadam
Kadambam sadam 
Thengai Sadam
maangai saadam 
maangai saadam- karnataka style
Kalkandu saadam (brown rice)

Kalkandu saadam

Kathirikkai pitlai
Chettinad curry
Chow chow kootu(in microwave)
Paharkai pitlai
Vegetable kurma(using coconut milk) 
kathrikkai rasavangi
kothavarangai puli kootu
Tirunelveli ashgourd and curd curry

Currys/Stir fries
Vazhaipoo parappu usli
Beans paruppu usli
Potato curry/urulaikizhangu curry
sennaikizhangu roast/yam roast 
plantain/vazhaikai podimas 
Seppangkazhangu /arbi/colocasia roast 
Puri masala/puri kizhangu 
 Ennai kathrikkai curry

Idli/dosa- Side dishes 
Vadai curry
Onion tomato gothsu(side dish for idli ,dosa and pongal)

Soya chunks sambar

Chinna vengaya/shallots vatha kuzhumbu

Onion tomato gothsu(side dish for idli ,dosa and pongal)

Mambazham morkuzhumbu
Ullundu vadai morkozhumbu
 Ashgourd/wintermelon/vella pooshnikai morkuzhumbu
vathal kuzhumbu
vengaya sambar
Mochai kottai kuzhumbu/hyacinth or field beans gravy
Muringakkai/drumstick poricha kuzhumbu  
Thalagam/ezhu kari kootu 
Mixed simple vegetable sambar 
Inji kuzhumbu/ginger gravy
Paneer and shallots in tamarind gravy(kuzhumbu) 

Pepper rasam
Pineapple rasam
Lemon rasam
Tomato rasam(without tamarind)
Mysore rasam
Kollu rasam
Drumstick rasam


Nellikai thokku
Red cabbage thuvayal
Kothamalli thuvayal

Milagai podi
Onion/vengaya thokku
Pudina kothamalli thuvayal/thokku
Zucchini thuvayal 
Curry powder/curry podi 
Parappu podi
Kovakkai chutney/ivygourd chutney 
Brinjal/kathrikkai thuvayal 
 Asparagus thuvayal 
Daangar/daunkar pachadi 
Arachu kalaki 
Beetroot thuvayal
Kollu thuvayal  
karuveppilai thuvayal 
Chowchow chutney

How to make sambar powder at home

Rava kesari-(step by step pictures)

Fruit kesari
Chocolate rava kesari
semiya payasam
kadalla parappu payasam
carrot payasam
Chakkarai pongal
Ravai payasam

Sago payasam
Seven cup sweet
Coconut Burfi
Maida burfi
Tirunelveli halwa
Pal payasam
Pineapple kesari
Banana payasam
Chakkarai pongal with brown rice 
Rava ladoo 
Arisi Pal payasam 
Pal payasam in pressure cooker
Brown rice payasam 
mango /mambazha kesari 
Raagi laddoo
baadam halwa/Almond halwa
Kalkandu saadam 
karthigai appam- low fat 
Vella appam- deep fry
Ragi Appam
Aval payasam 
Asoka halwa
coconut burfi with jaggery 
Soft mysore pak
Couscous kesari 

Tamilnadu savouries
Ribbon pakoda/nada
South indian mixture/madras mixture

Panakam and Neer mor for Ramnavami
Simple Tamil lunch
Navarathri prasadams
 Nombu Adai
- Vella adai
- Uppu adai/kara adai
Kozhukattai/modakam(using channa dal)- sweet and savoury versions
Ellu kozhukattai

Inji chaar/ginger juice 
 Inji lehyam/Ginger jam - Diwali special
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Sep 9, 2008

Ridgegourd/peerkankai/dodka/turai skin chutney recipe

Ridgegourd/peerkankai/dodka/turai skin chutney I had tasted this at my friend's place and I was quite amazed that even the rough skin of ridgegourd could be put into use. Many of you must be quite familar with a very popular chutney made in Maharashtrian homes with green chillies called 'techa'. This is prepared in the similar way. 'Techa' or the green chilly chutney has always been my favourite,but my hubby is never fond of anything hot (with green chilly).So, I remembered this and made this for him as the addition of ridgegourd skin makes it less hot and spicy. We loved it!!
I made this long ago and somehow never posted this one and it was lying in my draft before I though of putting it today.

Skin of ridgegourd-1 cup washed well and cut into smaller pieces.
Green chillies- 10to 12
Garlic- 5to6cloves
groundnut- 1/2 cup roasted and skin removed
Coriander leaves- chopped fine
Salt to taste
Oil- 1tbspn

Heat oil in a pan. Add the ridgegourd skin and cook till it is very tender. Then add rest of the ingredients and keep stirring for 5 to 10 minutes. Blend this mixture in a mixer to a coarse paste.
Serve with a little oil on top.
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Sep 8, 2008

Healthy Bhel - popular street food ,but strictly home made

healthy bhel We love chaat and I do make them once in a while on weekends as a evening snack. Bhel is a regular thing at home. I make the bhel quite healthy by adding mungbean sprouts and other raw vegetables. Its generally very filling , quick and easy to make ,healthy and has low calorie content, so good for dieters. So here's how I make.

Puffed rice- 2 cups
Mung bean sprouts- 1cup
Carrots- 1 chopped very fine or grated
Cucumber- 1 chopped very thin
Onion-1 chopped fine.
Tomato- 1chopped fine
potato- 1 boiled and mashed
Coriander chopped fine or garnishing.
Tamarind date chutney-2 tbspn
Salt to taste
Red chilly powder- to your taste
healthy bhelMethod-
For the chutney- I used readypaste this time, but generally I prefer to make it. So heres how I make it- Soak Dates and tamarind in hot water for 30 minutes. Squeeze out the juice. Boil the juice adding jaggery or sugar till it becomes thick. Allow it to cool.
For bhel- Mix all the ingredients together. Serve immediately garnishing with coriander leaves and sev.
Priti of Indiankhana has bestowed me with "beautiful site award" and "best blog darts thinker" award. Thankyou Priti.
Vani of illatharasi has also bestowed me with the "A perfect blend of friendship" award.
Thankyou vani.
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Sep 5, 2008

Apricot jelly recipe using gelatin--easy dessert recipes

apricot jelly I love apricots and add them in most of my cakes and pudddings. When I came across this recipe to make apricot jelly, it sounded very interesting. I made it and was over in no time. My hubby who is not too fond of dried apricots as it is liked the taste of the jelly. It can be served with cakes and icecreams . This is another one from Margaret's recipe book.So here's the recipe.

apricot jelly Ingredients-
Dried apricots- 250g(soaked overnight)
lemon juice- 1tbspn
Honey- 1 1/2 tbspn
Gelatine - 3tsp soaked in 3tbspn water

Place the apricots in a pan with the liquid in which they were soaked,adding more water if necessary to cover. Simmer for 20-30 minutes until tender.
Place the apricots and liquid in blender with lemon juice and honey and blend unti very smooth. Add water to make up 3 cups if necesary.
Place the gelatin in a bowl over a pan of simmering water and stir until dissolved .Stir into the apricot mixtue.
Pour into jelly mould and chill until set.
Dip the mould quickly into hot water to loosen and turn out onto a serving dish.
apricot jelly Serve chill as it is or with icecream and cakes.
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Sep 4, 2008

Spinach layer pancakes- savoury pancake recipe

spinach layer savoury pancakes Weekends are most difficult days for me. I am always in a fix on what to cook for dinner. I want to just relax during the weekends and I wish there was someone to cook for me. But I find myself spending a lot of time in the kitchen , yet till dinner time , nothing is cooked.
Last sunday, I made this pancakes for dinner. They tasted great. It did not take a very long time, yet they were quite filling and a healthy one too!!!I took the recipe from Margaret fulton's wholefood cooking.

Pancake batter
Wholemeal flour- 1cup
egg-1 beaten
Milk- 1 1/4 cup
Oil- 1tbspn

Spinach- 3 cups chopped
egg- 1 beaten
Salt and pepper
(you can also add cottage cheese according to the original recipe. But I did not have it)

To finish
Grated cheese- 1/2 cup

Place the flour in a bowl and make a well in the center. Add the egg, then gradually stir in half the milk and oil . Beat thoroughly until smooth . Add the remaining milk.
Heat a pan and add few drops of oil.Pour in 1 tablespoon of the batter and tilt the pan to coat the batter evenly. Cook till the underside is brown then turn over and cook for further 10 seconds. Repeat the same with the remaining batter to make 10 to 12 pancakes.
Cook the spinach in another pan with a pinch of salt for 5 minutes. Then add the egg and cottage cheese if you are adding it. Add required salt and pepper. Mix thorougly.
Place a pancake on a heatproof plate. Spread some filling and cover with another pancake . Continue layering. Sprinkle some grated cheese on the top. Cook in a preheated moderately hot oven at 180c for 20 to 25 minutes.
Serve immediately as a main dish.
spinach layer savoury pancakes
As this contains Spinach,cheese, and milk which are quite rich in calcium , I am sending it to Sangeeth's Eat healthy-Calcium rich event.
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Sep 3, 2008

Modak/Kozhakattai recipe(deep fried) for Ganesh Chathurthi!!!

I thought of blogging about my modaks today itself though I was a bit busy as well as tired. We did not have a elaborate pooja. I and my one year old kid celebrated ganesh chathurthi doing a Ganapati arti and neivedyam .
Traditionally in Tamilnadu, the modaks or kozhakattais are made by stuffing the poornam in processed rice flour and steaming it. But the laborious process was difficult for me to manage along with the kid. So I made by the easier version though this was also a bit time consuming. It tasted good. So here is how I made them.

Outer cover-
Plain flour/maida- 1cup
salt- 1tsp
ghee- 1tsp

Stuffing/poornam/puran -
Grated coconut- 1cup
Jaggery- 1cup
Cardamom powder- 1tsp
Grated nutmeg-a small pinch
Milk- 1/2cup(optional,can do without milk also)
Ghee- 1tbspn
Oil for deep frying

Make a smooth dough with the flour adding salt and ghee with some water. Keep it aside.
Now for the stuffing preperation, heat a heavy bottomed pan. Add jaggery and stir till it liquifies. Now add grated coconut, cardamon powder ,nutmeg. Mix well. Take care, it does not stick to the bottom of the pan and burn. Now add milk if using. Keep stirring till it thickens adding ghee in between.
Now make small balls with the dough. Roll each ball into a small circle. Keep the sweet stuffing in the center and seal from the top as shown in the picture below.
modak Repeat the same with all the balls. Deep fry them to a golden colour.
modakmodak I am sending this to Purva and priti who are hosting the Indian festive food event!!
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Sep 2, 2008

Jayashree's microwaved potatoes and zebra cake revisited!!!

When I saw the recipe of this tandoori aloo snack in Jayashree's blog, it surely sounded delicious. I had a bag of baby potatoes sitting in my kitchen for almost a week, so I decided to go ahead with her recipe. It was quite delicious and was over in no time. You can find the recipe in Jayashree's blog under the name of tandoori aloo or Microwavi aloo as she calls it!!!I followed the same recipe ,just added a little chaat powder to the marinade.
microwave baby potatoes
When I made the zebra cake last time,it surely came out very nice.It was spongy , moist ,soft and tasted great. But I couldn't get the perfect zebra stripes. Divya of easycooking asked me to use a smaller spoon to layer the cake batter in the tin. And this tip helped me and did the trick this time. When I tried the cake again yesterday, it came out really good and I got the perfect stripes. You can see the picture below. And the recipe for the cake here.
zebra cake

While on the sweet note, Divya has passed me the "blogging friends forever award." Thanks a lot Divya. I am honoured to have a sweet friend like you.
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Sep 1, 2008

Victoria Sandwich Cake/classic vanilla sponge cake recipe

victoria sandwich cake/classic sponge cake This month's bake at sweet and simple bakes was Victoria Sandwich cake. It is a timeless classic cake and the history behind the name of the cake is quite fascinating. As stated here , this cake was made popular in the Victorian times in the U.K. and named after Queen Victoria as her majesty was very fond of this particular cake.
Basically,in this cake, it consists of two sponges sandwiched together with a jam and castor sugar sprinkled on the top.
You can find the recipe here. I made exactly according to it. And used mixed fruit jam as that was available with me and I like the taste of it. I did not use buttercream icing. Maybe I will try using the next time I make this cake. I just added a thin layer of whipped cream above the jam.
The cake tasted great and was over in no time. It was quite easy baking this one and required less time too. Even my one year old loved it and wanted a big piece.:)
classic sponge cake
victoria sandwich cake/vanilla sponge cake Thanks Rosie and Marie for posting this one. It was great. Looking forward for the next bake.
I have updated my craft blog with shirt painting. Do have a look in case you are interested!!
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