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Jan 30, 2010

Rava Dosai - not the usual one!!

Remember me telling you sometime in december that I was not keeping a good health . Yes,I had had an eye inflammation and was unable to cook or do any of the chores. Thats when my kind neighbours came to my rescue!!! . During that time, one of my telegu friends made these dosas for our breakfast. It tasted really good and I asked her for the recipe.
 She promptly gave me the recipe and since then, this has been a regular breakfast thing at my place. It doesn't involve a lot of preperation and is very easy to make. The recipe is slightly different from the usual rava dosai. Its not as crispy as they usually are, but are softer in texture.

Ingredients-
Rava/semolina - 1cup
Maida- 1cup
rice flour- 1/2 cup
Curd- 1 1/2cup
Red chilly powder- 1tsp
Salt- to taste
Onions- 1 chopped fine
Coriander leaves- a small bunch chopped fine
Curry leaves- 1 sprig chopped
Green chillies- 1 finely chopped (optional)
Whole pepper- 1/2tsp
Oil- 1tsp + 1tbsp
different rava dosai

Method-
Mix rava, maida and rice flour with curd, mix well and leave it overnight.
The next day, add salt and red chilly powder to the mixture.
Heat oil in a pan. Add onions, curry leaves , pepper, green chillies. Saute till the onions are golden brown. Add this to the mixture. Pour some water so that the batter is of a watery consistency.
different rava dosai Now to make the dosas, heat a tava/girdle.
This batter cannot be spread on the tava easily as in case of the normal dosas. So what you have to do is, first pour some batter in the form a ring and then pour some in the center of the ring and try spreading that into a circle.
They are slightly thicker. It depends on the way you pour. With practice, the dosas turns to be more lacy and crispy!!
Now cook on one side till it appears golden brown in colour.
Pour some oil on the sides of the dosa. Now flip and cook on the other side too.
Serve hot with chutney , sambar, milagai podi or pickle.

different rava dosai

Jan 27, 2010

Spicy bittergourd- side dish for chapati

I have always loved the humble bittergourd even if it is detested by so many of them. It can be cooked and combined in so many ways that you can actually forget the bitter taste and enjoy it. Like in my stuffed bittergourd and now this one, the bittergourd gets blended with the spices, and you will actually love it. Try it to believe it!!

bittergourd masalaIngredients-
Bittergourds- 5-6 nos
Onion- 1 big chopped
Grated coconut- 1/2 cup
Bayleaves- 1
Cinnamon stick- 1 small piece
Cloves- 2-3
Cardamom- 2-3
Cumin seeds- 1 tsp
Fennel seeds- 1tsp
Ginger- 1' chopped
Garlic- 2cloves chopped
Dried red chillies- 4-5
Coriander powder-1tsp or you can use fresh coriander seeds- 1tsp
Red chilly powder- 1tsp(optional)
Salt to taste
Jaggery- a small piece
Turmeric powder- 1/2tsp
Oil- 1tbsp +1tsp

Method-

Cut the bittergourd into rings. Remove and discard the seeds. Add some salt and turmeric powder and leave it for around one hour. After an hour squeeze out the water completely.
Pour some oil in a pan. Shallow fry the bittergourd till golden brown and keep aside.
bittergourd masala Heat oil in another pan. Add the spices(red chillies, bayleaves, cinnamon,cloves,cardamom,and coriander seeds if adding) followed by ginger ,garlic and the onions. Saute for sometime. Now add the grated coconut and saute for one more minute. Cool and grind this to a paste.

bittergourd masalaHeat 1tsp of oil in a pan. Add the paste along with turmeric powder and salt along with coriander powder and red chilly powder if adding. Mix well and cook for around 5 minutes. Now add the bittergourd pieces. Mix well and add some water. Cook well till the bittergourd has blended with the spices in the gravy.Add a lump of jaggery and mix well.
Serve hot with hot chapatis.

Jan 25, 2010

No cook No sugar dryfruits nuts fudge!!

I started this food blog two years back in Jan 2008 and cant believe that I have already completed another successful and a beautiful year with creative Saga. Yes, Creative saga is now two years old. I have got to learn a lot in these two years .Not only did I learn cooking and baking, but also technical aspects like photography. I have also given a new look to the blog after a lot of stuggle with the coding.
So thats it for the last year and hope to do much more this year - HAPPY BIRTHDAY CREATIVE SAGA!!!
I decided to give a sweet start when Creative Saga steps into its third year. So the recipe for today is a no cook, no sugar fudge using nuts and dry fruits. I saw this recipe in Indian vegeterian kitchen and wanted to give it try. It tasted awesome. So heres the recipe and thanks to maahima for it.

nuts fudge
Ingredients-
Nuts- 3/4 cup( I used 10 almonds, 10 cashews and a few walnuts)
Instant Oats- 1/2 cup
Dates- 15 dates( Deseeded)can add more.
Cardamom powder- 1/2 tsp
Ghee- 1tsp

Method-
Grind the oats and nuts seperatly. Nuts should be ground to a coarse powder. Blend the dates in a blender to a smooth paste. Mix everything together to form a dough. Add ghee while kneading the dough to prevent it from sticking. Spread this dough by pressing it on a plate or rolling it with a rolling pin and cut them into desired shape.

Jan 20, 2010

Mixed vegetable masala- version 1

Its really boring to decide a side dish for chapati everyday. Isn't it?I buy my vegetables every weekend and by the time the week is over , most of the vegetables are over .Thats when I make these subjis using the left over vegetables in the pantry. I make it a little different each time. So , I thought of posting the different versions .
This one is a very simple version with the usual onions and tomatoes and the spices. It tastes really nice and goes well with chapatis and even as a side dish for pulao.

mix veg masala
Ingredients-
Potato- 1 big chopped into cubes
Carrot- 1 big chopped into cubes
Peas- 1 cup
Onion- 1 big chopped fine
Tomato- 1 big pureed
Ginger garlic green chilly paste- 1tsp
kasuri methi- 1tsp
Oil- 1tsp
Mustard seeds- 1tsp
Cumin seeds- 1tsp
Turmeric powder- 1tsp
Red chilly powder- 1tsp
Garam masala- 1tsp
Coriander powder- 1tsp
Salt to taste
Milk- 1/4cup

Method-
Heat oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds and cumin seeds .Then add the ginger garlic green chilly paste followed by the onions and saute for sometime. Then add the chopped vegetables. Sprinkle some water , cover with lid and cook till the vegetables are tender. Now add the tomato puree followed by all the spice powders along with kasuri methi and salt. Cook till the vegetables blend well with the spices. Add the milk and cook for a minute.
Serve hot with chapatis.

Notes-
To make the tomato puree, I place the tomato in boiling water for a minute or two, peel off the skin and puree it in a blender.

Jan 18, 2010

Apple crisp -easy fruit dessert recipes

This one is in my drafts for a couple of months now. I remember making this dessert a day before we left for our India trip last year. I had a huge stock of apples in my pantry which had to be finished the same day and now that was practically impossible. So I thought of baking a cake or something similar so that I could even carry some for my relatives out there in India. Finally I made this apple crisp.I dont remember carrying a parcel of this to India anyway!!But it tasted quite nice and I want to try making this again maybe with strawberries and have it in leisure.( I made this one in such a hurry that we could not really sit, relax and enjoy the dessert.)
I browsed the net for the recipe and found a similar recipe in most of the sites. A few of them used eggs. But I wanted to make it eggless . I have taken the recipe from here and modified it slightly.

apple crispIngredients-

Apples- 3 numbers
Lemon- 1tbsp
All purpose flour- 1/4cup
Granulated sugar- 1/2 cup
Instant oats- 1/2 cup
Butter- 4tbsps
Soft brown sugar- 1/4 cup
Cinnamon sugar powder- 1tsp

Method
Peel and chop the apple into pieces. Add the lemon juice and mix well. Arrange this pieces on a baking dish. Sprinkle some brown sugar on the top. Now combine the flour,oats and granulated sugar. Add the butter and mix well till its crumbly. Now spread this mixture on the top of the pieces. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar powder on the top.
Bake this at 180c for 35 minutes.
Preferably serve it warm with vanilla icecream.


apple crisp

Jan 14, 2010

Pineapple rava kesari

A very happy pongal to all the readers of Creative Saga!!!
The delicious delicacy chakkarai pongal or sweet pongal which is made for the festival was already posted last year. So , I decided to celebrate pongal in Creative saga with the ever delightful pineapple kesari. This recipe is almost similar to fruit kesari which I have posted long ago. But this one is exclusively with the pineapple and its flavour. It tastes awesome and one with a sweet tooth cannot just stop eating this one. You have to try it to believe me!!!So here goes the recipe.

pineapple rava kesariIngredients
Rava/semolina- 1 cup
Sugar- 3/4 cup
Ghee- 1tbsp
Yellow food colour- a pinch
Milk- 1 cup
Pineapple -1/2 cup chopped into tiny bits.
Pineapple essence- 1 tsp(A must)
Cashews/almonds- 1/4 cup chopped into small bits

Method-

Melt 1tsp of ghee in a pan. Add the nuts and roast till they turn a golden brown. Keep aside.
Add another teaspoon of ghee and roast the rava for about 5 minutes. Meanwhile add 1cup of water to the milk and bring it to a boil. Mix the pinch of food colour in a small quantity of milk.
Now melt a teaspoon of ghee in a large pan. Add the pineapple bits and saute for sometime. Add the roasted rava and the nuts. Now add sugar and mix well. This is followed by the addition of boiled milk along with the food colour mixed in milk. Add the essence . Now keep stirring till everything gets mixed well into a thick mass. Add the remaining ghee and mix well.

Jan 8, 2010

Gobi/cauliflower Paratha

I am trying to blog every alternate days. Its not that , I have lots of time nowadays, infact I am busier now. But yes , its a new year resolution that I learn to manage my time and also my promise that I spend sometime everyday for my blog as well as some other activities which seems to have been forgotten. So thats it. I hope to continue this for the entire year. So dear friends, just give me a nudge, if I seem to go low and lazy again!!
Vegetable paratha is always for the weekend brunch. They are so filling, healthy and delicious too. They can simply be had with curds , ketchups or pickles. This time it was cauliflower.It is really delicious and a best way to sneak in some cauliflower for the so called picky eaters!!!

 border=Ingredients-
For the filling
Cauliflower-250gms
Turmeric powder- 1tsp
Red chilly powder- 1tsp
Salt to taste
Garam masala- 1tsp
Oil- 1tsp

For the dough
Wheat flour- 1cup
Oil - 2tsp
Salt- a pinch

Ghee for cooking the parathas

Method-

For the filling
Grate the cauliflower. Heat oil in a pan. Add the grated cauliflower followed by rest of the spices. Cook till the cauliflower becomes soft. Mash and mix well. Make small balls with the cooked cauliflower.

For the dough
Mix all the ingredients and make a soft and smooth dough with it. Make small balls(larger than the ball made with vegetable) with it.

Assembling the paratha
Roll the ball made with the wheat dough into a circle. Place a ball of cauliflower filling in the center. Seal the edges rolling them into a ball. Now roll them into a circle again. Place this on a hot tava/girdle and cook on one side and flip it to cook on the other side. Cook till brown spots appear. Rub ghee on both sides while cooking.
Serve immediately with curd, pickle or ketchup.

gobi/cauliflower paratha

Jan 6, 2010

Ragi Idli!!

Schools have re opened . My son started going to a small nearby playgroup. It was me who was more excited and nervous at the same time when he stepped into the tiny colourful classroom yesterday. I could see the happiness in his face when he saw the numerous toys and colourful pictures everywhere. He got lost in his own world along with the other kids and then suddenly amidst all the noise and excitement he looked at me and said " I like this place". I am still a bit nervous until he settles down soon in the new environment.
So coming to the recipe for today, which is a healthy, filling and easy to make breakfast. I got introduced to this ragi / finger millet /nachni when I was pregnant and the haemoglobin levels had dropped. My doctor advised me to have food which contained lots of iron and protein and ragi happened to be one of them. That time, I just used to add the ragi flour in idli and dosa batter. But that was so boring!!! Later on, I browsed the net to find a lot of yummy recipes with ragi. So now ragi has become an essential part of our diets. Idlis with ragi is one of them.
ragi idliIngredients-
Ragi flour- 2 cups
Udid dal- 1 cup
Salt to taste
Oil- 1tsp

Method
Soak udid dal for about 4 hours and grind it to a smooth paste. Add the ragi flour. Mix well, add salt and keep it overnight to ferment. Consistency should be that of a normal idli batter.
Grease the idli moulds with oil and pour the batter in them. Steam for about 20 minutes.
Serve warm with chutney or milagai podi.

Madhuram is hosting the JFI event and the ingredient is ragi. So this one goes to her event.

Jan 4, 2010

Peach crumb cake-fruit cake recipes

A very Happy new year to all the readers of Creative Saga. As I have mentioned in my previous post, I am going to spend a quality time blogging this year and please do expect more from Creative Saga. I know I am a bit late in wishing you all for the new year,but other priorities have kept me quite busy and I am waiting for things to come into a proper routine.
Last year saw only a few posts in Creative Saga,less of baking and more of healthy recipes and also a good focus on traditional Indian and Tamil recipes. The Traditional Tirunelveli halwa and baafle were the most popular recipes of 2009' in Creative Saga . My first food event called "cooking with greens" was a good success which recieved around 150 entries. I also spend a considerable amount of time working on the look of the blog and won appreciations from few of them too. I hope to continue the same work this year too and also host a few more events which has been going on in my mind for a long time. I also want to concenterate on food photography which I have already started last year.
So lets start this year with a cake as baking has always remained my passion.

peach crumb cakeIngredients-
For the cake
Plain flour- 2cups
Baking powder- 2tbsp
Baking soda- a pinch
Eggs-3
Sugar- 1 cup
Oil- 1/2 cup
Milk- 1/4 cup
Peach- 1 cut into very small pieces.

For the crumb topping
Flour- 1/2 cup
Sugar- 1/4 cup
Butter- 2tbsp
Peach- 1 cut into tiny bits

peach crumb cakeMethod-
Beat the eggs and combine with sugar to form a fluffy mixture. Add the dry ingredients and mix well. Then add the milk followed by oil. Combine everything well to form a uniform batter. Fold in the peach pieces just before adding it to the prepered well greased loose bottomed cake tin.
Mix the ingredients of the crumb topping (except the peach) to form a coarse mixture(like that of the bread crumbs).
Add the crumb topping on the top of the cake batter uniformly. Place the peach pieces on top of it evenly.
Bake this in a preheated oven at 180c for 35 minutes or till a skewer comes out clean.
Cool and loosen the cake from the cake tin. Slice and serve.
peach crumb cakeUpdate- I am sending this to Divya of Dilse who is hosting 'Show me your cake" event!!

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