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Friday, September 28, 2012

Ellu urundai

Today's recipe is Ellu urundai. I can't believe how simple it is, to make this dish. It required just 2 ingredients- sesame seeds and jaggery. When I came across this recipe, I definitely wanted to try this. I tried this morning and it tasted awesome, brought back all the child hood memories. It is after so many years am tasting ellu urundai. 


What are the ingredients needed?

Sesame seeds, 1 cup
Jaggery, 3/4 cup

How it is made?
  1. Try roast the sesame seeds till they lightly change colour and aroma starts coming out.
  2. Grate the jaggery or powder them.
  3. Let the sesame seeds cool down a little and powder them coarsely in a blender.
  4. Then add the jaggery and blend them in the blender.
  5. Take 2 tablespoons of this mixture and roll them into balls. 
  6. Ellu urundai is ready.Enjoy!!


Notes
  • You can use black sesame seeds, I have used white sesame seeds here.
  • If needed, you can add some cardamom powder too, just a pinch for flavor.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Easy Modakam Recipe | Inippu Ellu Kozhukattai | Kozhukattai with sweet stuffing

Today's recipe is Inippu ellu Kozhukattai that is coconut, jaggery and sesame seeds stuffed kozhukattai. Every year for Vinayagar Chathurthi, Mom used to make this kozhukattai. It is my favorite and now Thaara also loves this. For this Vinayagar Chathurthi, I made plain kozhukattai, this sweet kozhukattai, Kondai kadalai sundal  and Besan Ladoo.



What are the ingredients needed?

For outer covering,
Rice Flour, 1 1/2 cup
Salt, a pinch
Hot Water, as needed (about 3/4 cup)

For stuffing
Grated coconut, 1/2 cup
Sesame seeds, 1/2 cup
Grated jaggery, 1/2 cup
Cardamom, 4-5 nos.
Sugar, 1 Tbs


How it is made?

The outer covering
  • Mix the rice flour with a pinch of salt and add required hot water and knead them to a dough.( Mom doesnt use any other special process, just mix with water to form dough.I too follow that)
For the stuffing
  • Dry roast the sesame seeds. 
  • Remove the skin of the cardamom and powder its seeds with a tablespoon of Sugar.
  • Mix the sesame seeds, grated jaggery, grated coconut and powdered cardamom. Mix them well till they are fully incorporated.
The assembly.
  • Take a lemon sized ball of dough and make it into a shape of a cup.
  • Then stuff the cup with the prepared stuffing.
  • Close it  and seal it. 
  • Steam cook this kozhukattai  for 6-7 minutes
Offer to God and Enjoy!

Notes
There are other methods of preparing the dough for the kozhukattai. This method for me is simple and it works just fine. 

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Kondakadalai Sundal/ Black Chickpea Stir fry

Sundal is the stir fried legumes of your choice. It is a must have for any festival or offering to God .It can be made with chick peas, peas, channa dhal etc., It is simple and easy to make. It makes a healthy snack too. I made this sundal for Vinayagar Chathurthi.


What are the ingredients needed?

Black chickpeas, 1 cup
Oil, 2-3 teaspoons
Mustard seeds, 1/4 teaspoon
Red chillies, 2-3 (depending on the size, required spice level)
Curry leaves, a sprig
Asafoetida- a pinch
Salt, to taste
Grated Coconut, 3 tablespoons

How it is made?
  1. Soak the chickpeas for 5-6 hours, preferably overnight.
  2. Then pressure cook the chickpeas for 3-4 whistles.
  3. Then let the pressure release, drain the water and set the cooked chick peas aside. 
  4. Heat oil in a skillet, add mustard seeds, when they crack add red chillies, curry leaves and fry for a minute or two, then add asofoetida, cooked chickpeas, salt to taste and mix well.
  5. Cook this for a minute or two, then remove from heat add the grated coconut, mix well and serve.

Notes
  • While eating as a snack, onion can also be used. But usually while offering to God, we avoid garlic and Onion.
  • For variation, u can add grated ginger too. Fry the grated ginger with other ingredients and proceed.
  • Red chillies can be replaced by green chillies too.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Besan Laddoo - A guest post for Priya

When Priya of Cook like Priya asked me to do a guest post, I was so thrilled, because it is my first time. I instantly accepted. I admire her blog - the layout, design, pictures, the words she uses and also her recipes. If you haven't been to her space take a peep here.    We both are in the baking group, so we got to know each other personally. She is a very bubbly cheerful person and am so happy to have her as a friend.
Initially I wanted to do some baked dish for the post, but later changed my mind thinking one after the other festive seasons are about to come , so Indian dessert would be most appropriate. Also Thaara loves laddoos (any type) a lot, that is also another reason for selecting laddoo. 


Below there are some pictures of the laddoo. The first picture you can also find in Priya's place, meaning virtually am bringing in laddoo to Priya for the guest post and after clicking the picture, I was focusing to click some pictures , by that time, Thaara is trying to take laddoo from the basket, she couldn't resist it. I clicked the picture of it too. That is the other picture. Anyway, the laddoo, was a hit at home, both Hubby and Thaara loved it. Most of it were gobbled by Thaara and rest by Hubby and few friends. 






The laddoo almost melted in the mouth and the toasted, chopped almonds added crunch to the bite. It is a yummy laddoo. Now you can imagine the taste of the Laddoo.. For the recipe, hop on to Priya's space. 

Friday, September 21, 2012

Palada Payasam- A guest post by Julie

I am so excited to have the first guest post at Divya's Culinary Journey by wonderful blogger, Julie of Erivum Puliyum. I have a huge respect for her, for her guidance  when I started taking baby steps in Blogging, also she is very friendly person. I love her blog which has a wide collection of over 330 recipes with lot of varieties. She is a dedicated blogger who updates her blog almost every other day, also when a fellow blogger posts a recipe she always stops by to read and comment. I really used to wonder, how she gets time for all this with 2 kids.This shows her dedication to blogging. She is also a creative person, who also has another blog, Beading beads. So when I thought about the guest post series, the first one to come in mind was her. Am so glad that she instantly agreed, when I requested her. 
It is a honour to have you here, Julie. Hearty Welcome to Divya's Culinary Journey! 
Over to Julie..


When Divya @ Divya's Culinary Journey asked me to join her guest post series starting off with me,I happily consented her.She is a very good friend of mine in the blogosphere.Her blog has many varied and beautiful collection of recipes.Thanx Divya for the wonderful oppurtunity and happy about this moment.And as always,I always celebrate my guest posts with something sweet,so does this .Sharing with you all,the tradtional sadya dessert and the preferred delicacy mostly in all sadya(banquet lunch) and marriage occassions is palada payasam(kheer).Palada is simply rice flakes made out of ground rice or rice flour.These are readily available in markets as palada.I have used here my home made ada recipe.You can use the store brought version too.The ada is then cooked in whole milk and it thickens in consistency,you get a light pinkish color.So,friends enjoy this yummy delicious kheer with your loved ones on any special occasions.


Ingredients
Ada (refer notes) 1 cup
Milk 4 cups
Sugar 4 cups or more as per taste
Cardamom powder 1/2 tsp
Raisins 1tbsp
Cashews 1 tbsp
Ghee 1tbsp

Method
  1. If you are using the store brought packet,boil water in a pan and add the ada.Let it cook like pasta for approx 15 mins and then drain water.Rinse in cold water to remove stickiness and keep aside.(I skipped the cooking of ada as I used the fresh home made ada,the recipe is here)
  2. In the meantime,heat the milk in a shallow pan and boil milk in it.Add sugar and let it thicken for about 30 mins.Keep stirring in between and keep on medium flame to prevent burning the milk at the bottom.
  3. Add the cooked ada in the milk and cook again till it reaches a consistency as of condensed milk payasam.(The perfect consistency is when u pour a drop on a plate it shouln't run watery)
  4. Add cardamom powder,cover and put off flame.
  5. Heat another pan,add ghee.Fry cashews and then raisins.Add to the payasam/kheer.
  6. Serve warm !!!
Serves 3 adults.


NOTES
* You can use store brought ada packet.Just make sure to cook the ada before adding to milk.
* You can add condensed milk to thicken the kheer but the authentic taste is with the whole milk thickened.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Orange Cranberry Muffins- Low calorie version


Today's recipe is Orange Cranberry Muffins. When I took up the theme Low calorie healthy breakfast for the blogging marathon I wanted to have atleast one baked breakfast recipe. So browsed and came across this recipe from Madhuram's Eggless Cooking. So did some minor changes to suit our taste and my kids loved this muffin and My hubby who is a health freak didn't have anything to complain. It is eggless, sugar less made with combination of oat flour, wheat flour and all purpose flour. Also it is low calorie. I replaced sugar from the original recipe to agave nectar, which has low glycemic index. (It does not increase blood sugar level rapidly compared to consumption of normal sugar).This is a mildly sweet muffin and also the cranberries you get in each bite compliments the orange flavor. 


What are the ingredients needed?

Wheat flour, 1 cup
Oats flour, 1/2 cup
All purpose flour, 1/2 cup
Salt, 1/4 teaspoon
Baking powder, 1 teaspoon
Baking Soda, 1/4 teaspoon
Agave Nectar, 1/2 cup
Oil, 1/4 cup
Low fat yogurt, 1/4 cup
Skimmed fat free milk, 3/4 cup
Orange juice, 3 Tablespoons
Orange zest, 1 teaspoon
Dried Cranberries, 1/2 cup
Oats , to sprinkle on top(optional)


How it is made?
  1. Pre- heat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Prepare the muffin pan by greasing and flouring it or simply use the paper liner and set it aside.
  3. In a bowl, combine all the dry ingredients together.(flours, salt, baking soda and baking powder) Set them aside.
  4. In another bowl, combine the Nectar, oil and yogurt till they are well combined.
  5. Add this mixture to the flour mixture, alternating with milk to form a homogeneous mixture.
  6. Now fold in the cranberries, orange zest and orange juice till they are fully incorporated.
  7. Spoon in the batter to the muffin pan. (approximately 3 tablespoons per cup) 
  8. If using, sprinkle oats on the top and bake for 18-20 minutes until the fork inserted comes out clean.
  9. Let it cool, enjoy.

It yields 12 muffins.


Notes
  • The muffins taste better when it is completely cooled off compared to eaten warm. So wait till it is cooled completely.
  • If you want, you can add some 1/4 cup of chopped walnuts to the batter.
  • For the oat flour, if you have rolled oats or quick cooking oats, just powder them finely and use.You get it in the store too. But I just powdered the oats and used.


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Oats Kara Kozhukattai Recipe | Spicy Oats Pidi Kozhukattai

Lord Ganesha is widely worshiped as God of,wisdom, prosperity, good fortune and health. Also before beginning anything new, he is the one worshiped first. He is believed to remove all the obstacles, destroy all evils and bring in success.It is his birthday today. On this special occasion, wish you all a Happy Vinayagar Chathurthi!!
The most famous dish made on this day is kozhukattai. What can be more apt than Oats Kozhukattai for breakfast on this special day?  Yes. Today's recipe is Oats Kozhukattai.


What are the ingredients needed?

Rolled Oats- 1 cup
Rice flour, 1/2 cup
Oil, 2-3 teaspoon
Mustard seeds, 1/2 teaspoon
Split Urad dhal, 2 teaspoon
Red chillies, 2- 3 nos(depending on the size of chillies and spice level required)
Cilantro- 2 Tablespoon(chopped)
Curry leaves, 1 sprig (chopped)
Salt to taste


How it is made?
  1. Dry roast the oats till it gives mild aroma. Then let it cool and powder it finely. 
  2. Heat oil in a skillet, add mustard seeds, urad dhal, red chilies and curry leaves and fry till urad dhal turns color lightly, then add chopped cilantro mix well and remove them from heat. Let it cool.
  3. Combine oats flour, rice flour and salt. Then add the tempered mixture to the flour and required quantity of hot water and knead the flour till they are fully combined and a dough is formed(Chappathi dough like consistency).
  4. Take this mixture, roll into equal sized balls and take each ball in palm close the fingers and press to get the desired kozhukattai shape. Do the same to all the balls.
  5. Then grease a idly plate and steam cook these kozhukattais for 7-8 minutes. 
  6. Remove from heat, keep them covered till it is ready to be served.
  7. I got about 12 kozhukattais. 
Note:
  • While roasting oats take care not to burn the oats, roast only till mild aroma comes and it will change color lightly but dont wait till it is golden brown. ;) 
  • For kneading, I used about 3/4 cup of hot water plus few more drops.  Take care not to add too much water.
  • While storing keep the kozhukattais covered, when kept open they get dried very fast.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Ragi Dosa/ Finger millet crepes

Today's recipe is Ragi Dosa. My mom used to make this when we were young and I too make it sometimes when we are bored with the usual dosa or just as an instant fix for breakfast/ dinner. Since it is made of Ragi, it is nutritious ( it is rich in calcium, iron & has got high fibre content) and also this dosa is instant, can be made immediately. It is also a diabetic friendly recipe.
There is a saying, " Eat breakfast like King", but how many of us are really doing it? Due to the crazy rush we have in the mornings, usually most of us, skip the breakfast. May be it may save time for the moment, but it definitely affects the health at some point. To have a healthy start(what I mean here is healthy for both mind and body) for the day, having  healthy wholesome breakfast is more important.



What are the ingredients needed?

Ragi flour, 1 cup
Wheat flour, 1/2 cup
Rice flour, 1/4 cup
Water, as needed
Salt to taste
Oil, as needed.

How it is made?
  1. Combine all the flours together.
  2. Add salt to taste.
  3. Add water and mix to get the desired consistency like the usual dosa batter.
  4. Heat nonstick pan, pour a laddle full of the batter and spread them into a large circle.
  5. Drizzle a little oil around them.
  6. Cover and cook for a minute or two. 
  7. If needed, flip the dosa and cook for another minute.
  8. Remove the dosa and serve with chutney of your choice.

Serves 3 people.


Note
  • In the picture, I have served it with coconut chutney, it is because my hubby and kids love it. If you desire to go for low calorie breakfast, stay away from coconut chutney. 
  • If you feel that this dosa is plain, you can add some chopped onions, chillies, curry leaves and cumin seeds for variation.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Corn flakes Cookies


I love to bake. Though my love for baking started years ago, I began baking only after landing in the US. So I joined a baking group and theme for the month was cookies and I selected Corn flakes cookies  from the book, Baking: Commonsense by Murdoch books
Corn flakes covering the cookies gives the crunch required on the outside and it is soft on the inside with a mild coconut flavor and loaded with raisins and cranberries. Yum!! 
I just halved the recipe and it yielded around 12 cookies(regular size) and 2 little cookies (I made for my son without the cornflakes) and also I added some extra cranberries along with the raisin except that I didn't change anything else much in the recipe.


What are the ingredients needed?

All purpose flour, 1 cup
Baking Soda, 1/4 teaspoon
Baking Powder, 1/4 teaspoon
Butter(room temperature), 1/4 cup
Sugar, 6 Tablespoon
Egg, 1 no.
Vanilla extract, 1/2 teaspoon
Raisins, 1 Tablespoon
Dried cranberries, 1 Tablespoon
Dessicated coconut, 1/3 cup
Crushed cornflakes, approximately 1 cup



How it is made?
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Sift together flour, baking soda and baking powder and set it aside.
  3. Cream together butter and sugar till they are fluffy and add a egg and beat them lightly and then add vanilla and mix them till they are well combined.
  4. Then add the flour mixture to this mixture and using the spatula mix them well, and now add the dessicated coconut, raisins and cranberries and mix them till they are fully incorporated and the dough is smooth.
  5. In a shallow dish take the crushed cornflakes and take a tablespoon of the cookie dough, drop and roll them in these cornflakes and arrange them in a cookie sheet.
  6. Once all the cookies are arranged, bake them in the oven for 12-15 minutes until they turn lightly golden.
  7. Let them cool completely then store them in airtight container. 
  8. Eat and enjoy as desired. 


Friday, September 14, 2012

Muttai Kuzhambu | Egg Kulambu (Gravy)

Being away from India, I really miss my Mom's cooking a lot. Special ingredient in her cooking will always be her love for us. I love everything my mom cooks, especially her egg kuzhambu. Though I have tried the recipe so many times, still it does not match with hers. But sure, it is my hubby and little girl's favourite. Just wanted to share my mom's Egg kulambu recipe here. It is a tamarind based spicy and tangy gravy made with boiled egg.
egg kulambu , egg gravy

Muttai Kuzhambu Recipe

South Indian style spicy tangy tamarind based gravy with boiled egg. This gravy can be had with rice, idli or dosa.
Prep time:   Cook time:   Total time:
Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients :

  • Eggs : 4 nos
  • Tamarind : a small lemon size
  • Water : 4 1/2 cups
  • Oil : 4-5 teaspoons
  • Salt : to taste
  • Cilantro : a bunch, to garnish
To grind
  • Scrapped coconut : 1/2 cup
  • Chopped onions : 1 cup
  • Cumin seeds : 1/2 teaspoon
  • Chilli powder : 1 teaspoon
  • Coriander powder : 2 teaspoons
  • Turmeric Powder : 1/4 teaspoon
To temper
  • Mustard seeds : 1/4 teaspoon
  • Fenugreek seeds : 1/2 teaspoon
  • Garlic (de-skinned) : 4 - 5 cloves
  • Asafoetida : a pinch
  • Curry leaves : 1 sprig
Egg gravy for rice, egg tamarind gravy

Instructions :

  1. Boil the eggs and remove the shell.
  2. Soak Tamarind and extract it.
  3. In skillet add two tsp oil,add cumin seeds,then add chopped onions, saute till its golden brown.Then to it add turmeric, chilli and coriander powders. Finally add coconut and switch the stove off , when the roasted coconut gives a good aroma. Let it cool for a while and grind it to paste.
  4. In a sauce pan, add remaining oil and then add mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds. Add asafoetida, curry leaves and garlic, cook till the garlic is a light brown colour. To it add the ground paste, and the tamarind extract. Let it cook for 3-4 minutes.
  5. Then add water and salt to taste. Finally, add boiled eggs.
  6. Let the gravy simmer till oil seperates.
  7. Finally garnish it with cilantro.
  8. Ready to serve with rice.

Notes :

  • I made small slits in the egg, so that the flavour of the kuzhambu can get into it.
  • I used frozen scrapped coconut, it has to be thawed before use.

Recipe Developed, Baked and Clicked By

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Panchmel Dal

For Dinner, I wanted to do something special, I was browsing for interesting dish to serve along with chappathi and came across this recipe by Tarla Dalal. I did some minor changes to fit our personal taste and it was a hit. Panchmel Dal, as the name suggests has five lentils. It is spicy and tangy gravy. 

Original recipe from Tarla Dalal



What are the ingredients needed?

Toor Dal, 1/3 cup
Channa Dal, 1/3 cup
Moong Dal, 1/3 cup
Urad dal, 1 Tablespoon
Whole moong, 2 tablespoon
Chilli powder, 2 teaspoons
Coriander powder, 2 teaspoons
Turmeric powder, 1/2 teaspoon
Garam masala, 1 teaspoon
Oil, 1 tablespoon
Ghee, 2 tablespoon
Slit Green chillies, 2 nos
Cloves, 5- 6 nos
Bay leaves, 2 nos
Cumin seeds, 1 teaspoon
Asafoetida, a pinch
Amchur powder, 2 teaspoon
Tamarind extract, 2 teaspoon
Salt, to taste
Water as needed
Cilantro, to garnish (optional)

How it is made?
  1. Wash all the five dhals together and pressure cook them.
  2. Let the pressure release and mash them.
  3. Mix chilli powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and garam masala with 3 tablespoons of water and set this masala mixture aside.
  4. Heat oil and ghee in a heavy bottomed pan, add cumin seeds,green chillies, asafoetida, cloves and bay leaves and fry them for a minute or two.
  5. Then add the masala mixture and saute for another couple of minutes.
  6. Then add the mashed dhals, amchur powder, tamarind extract and salt to taste and mix them well. Add water to get the desired consistency and simmer for 5-6 minutes.
  7. Serve them hot with rotis or any Indian flat bread.

Note:
  • It is a spicy gravy. You can adjust the spice level to your taste.
  • Keep an eye on the gravy while it is simmering, it gets burnt at the bottom, so use heavy bottomed pan, keep stirring occasionally.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Paruppu Thuvaiyal/ Paruppu Thogaiyal

School started for my daughter yesterday and today she is at home sick. She demanded my attention the whole time and I hardly got any time to cook. So made rasam and this thovaiyal to keep it simple.
Paruppu thovaiyal is the kind of spicy lentil chutney served as an accompaniment with the rice.

What are the ingredients needed?

Toor dhal/ Yellow pigeon peas/ Thuvaram paruppu, 1/2 cup
Oil, 2-3 tsp
Red chillies, 3-4 nos
Garlic, 5-6 cloves
Asafoetida, a pinch
Coconut, 3-4 tablespoon
Tamarind, size of a gooseberry
Salt, as per taste
Water, as needed


How it is made?
  1. Heat oil in a skillet.
  2. Add red chillies and garlic and fry them for a minute or two.
  3. Then add the toor dhal, a pinch of asafoetida and roast it in low heat till the dhal turns in color and nice aroma comes out of it. 
  4. Then add the coconut, tamarind mix well and turn off the heat.
  5. Let it cool off, add salt to taste and required water and grind it into a coarse paste.
  6. Thovaiyal is ready to be served.
Serve with Rice and rasam or just this thovaiyal with dollop of ghee in the rice. Serves 3-4 persons.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Arisi Paruppu Saadham/ Arisim Paruppu Sadham

I feel like it has been ages since I last posted any recipe in this space. It started off as a small vacation break and one thing lead to another and couldn't get back into action. Finally here I am with a recipe- Arisi Paruppu saadham. 
It is a simple and easy one pot meal, which makes it great for packing lunch on a busy morning. This dish is a special of Coimbatore and everyone have their own way of making this dish. When I decided to blog about this dish, I mailed my Mom for her recipe and made it. I prepared it one busy day and in a hurry clicked some pictures and I served it with some fry-yums. 


What are the ingredients needed?

Rice, 1 cup
Toor dhal/ Yellow pigeon peas, 1/2 cup
Oil, 1 Tablespoon
Mustard seeds, 1/4 teaspoon
Cumin seeds, 1 teaspoon
Cloves, 3 - 4 numbers
Cinnamon, 1 small stick
Garlic, 4-5 cloves
Curry leaves, 1 sprig
Chilli powder, 1 tsp
Turmeric powder, 1/4 tsp
Asafoetida, a pinch
Ghee, 2-3 Tablespoon
Grated coconut,a handful

How it is prepared?
  1. Wash the rice and dhal and set them aside.
  2. Heat oil in a pressure cooker, add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, cloves, cinnamon and fry them for a minute or two. Then add the garlic and curry leaves and fry for another 2 -3 minutes until they garlic turns a light golden brown.
  3. Then add chilli powder and turmeric powder,asafoetida then add the rice and dhal, add salt to taste and water (in the ratio 1:2.5) mix well and add a handful of grated coconut, close the lid and pressure cook.
  4. Once the cooker whistles, reduce the flame and let it cook for a 5-6 minutes in a low flame, turn of the heat.
  5. Once the pressure releases, add 2-3 tablespoons of ghee, mix well and serve.


Note
  • You can add tomatoes too. But I haven't used them.
  • Instead of grated coconut, you can chop up the pieces of coconut and add to the rice. Mom used to do it.
  • The rice will be mushy. If you want them to be less mushy adjust the proportion of water accordingly.