January 28, 2017

Stuffed Snake Gourd


Snack gourd dal curry is what I cook frequently using this vegetable.  I found this recipe in Kabita's Kitchen and I tried it over the weekend.  It taste really delicious with spicy stuffing and perfect side dish with rice or rotis.  


Ingredients :

  1. Snack gourd - 5 inch piece
  2. Onion - 2 nos
  3. Ginger - 2 inch piece
  4. Garlic - 8 pods
  5. Cumin seeds - 1 tbsp
  6. Coriander seeds - 1 tsp
  7. Black pepper corns - 1/2 tsp
  8. Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
  9. Red chilly powder - 1/2 tsp
  10. Garam masala powder - 1/2 tsp
  11. Dry mango powder (amchur powder ) - 1/2 tsp
  12. Salt to taste
  13. Oil  

Method :

Spice paste preparation :

1.   Grind together 1 onion, ginger, garlic, cumin seeds - 1/2 tbsp, coriander seeds & pepper corns using little water to thick paste.  Keep aside.

Preparing snack gourd :

2.   Wash and dry the snack gourd (Don't peel the skin).  Cut them around 5 inch piece and remove the seeds from the inner part using knife and keep aside.

Preparing the stuffing :

3.   Heat oil in the pan, add cumin seeds, finely chopped 1 onion and salt to taste.  Saute till tender.

4.   Add grounded spice paste, turmeric powder, red chilly powder, garam masala powder, dry mango powder and saute.

5.   Add the snack gourd seeds and salt if required.  Cook till done.


Assembling :

6.  Gently stuff the snack gourd with the masala.

7.   Heat oil in the frying pan, add the stuffed snake gourd and gently fry them till done or golden brown on all the sides.  Cook them over low heat (it may take more time to cook).

8.   Garnish it with coriander leaves, if desired.


Serve with rice / rotis.

January 26, 2017

Vallarai Keerai Podi | Brahmi Leaf Rice Powder !!!


Homemade vallarai keerai podi is my hubby's favourite rice mix powder.  We get this keerai only occasionally in my place & I make this podi little more than the usual quantity and freeze them for longer use.  It taste great with hot steamed rice and a drop of ghee.  This will be handy when I feel lazy to cook.    


Ingredients :
  1. Vallarai Keerai - 2 bunch
  2. Channa dal - 3 tbsp
  3. Ural dal - 2 tbsp
  4. Peanuts - 2 tbsp (or Sesame seeds - 1 tbsp or coriander seeds - 1 tbsp)
  5. Dry coconut powder - 1 tbsp
  6. Hing - 1 tsp
  7. Tamarind - small lemon size
  8. Salt to taste
  9. Garlic - 2 cloves
  10. Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
  11. Dry red chillies - 10 nos
  12. Ghee - 2 tsp    

Method :
 
1.  Clean, wash and dry the Brahmi leaves( Vallarai keerai) over paper towels for an hour and dry roast them over pan till crispy.

2.  Alternatively, we can sun dry them for 1 - 2 days. 

3.  Heat ghee in the pan, roast channa dal, urad dal, peanuts, tamarind, garlic, cumin seeds, red chillies and allow them to cool completely.

4.  Grind them to coarse or fine powder along with the vallarai keerai/brahmi leaves, salt and hing.


Store it in air tight container.

January 24, 2017

Special Ghee Mysore Pak - Just like Krishna Sweet !!!



Mysore pak is my favourite sweet.  Krishna sweets in chennai is very popular for this sweet and this recipe almost taste like the same.  The quality of sweet highly depends on the ghee we use.  This is quite a easy and foolproof recipe.  Mysore pak stays good at room temperature for a week or more.  I prefer to warm it in microwave for few seconds before serving. 


Ingredients :

  1. Gram flour / Besan - 1/2 cup
  2. Ghee / Clarified Butter - 3/4 cup 
  3. Sugar - 1/2 cup
  4. Water - 3 tbsp

Method :

1.   Dry roast the besan / gram flour.  Keep aside.

2.   Heat ghee and divide it into two portion i.e. 1/2 cup and 1/4 cup.  

3.   In a heavy bottom pan, bring the sugar and water to boil until it forms single thread consistency.

4.   Meanwhile, mix together fried gram flour and 1/2 cup of hot ghee without any lumps.  

5.   Once, the sugar syrup is ready add the flour ghee mixture to it and keep stirring without any lumps over low heat.  


6.   After 3 mins, slowly add the remaining 1/4 cup hot ghee to the minute and keep stirring until the mysore pak mixture rolls like a ball and doesn't stick on the sides of the pan.

7.   Grease the tray with ghee and pour the mixture and spread evenly.  Allow the mixture to cool down slightly.

8.   Cut the mysore pak using greased knife to desired shape. Allow them to cool completely before removing them off.


Ready to serve.

January 19, 2017

Lion Face Chocolate Cherry Butter Cake !!


Chocolate cherry butter cake is moist and tender.   This is the cake I make for birthdays or for special occasions.  This unique chocolate cake flavour depends on the chocolate we use.  Perfect celebration cake & this time is lion face theme.  


Ingredients :

  1. Unsweetened Chocolate - 120 gms
  2. Unsweetened cocoa powder - 3 tbsp (25 gms)
  3. All purpose flour - 2 1/4 cups
  4. Baking powder - 2 tsp
  5. Baking soda - 1 tsp
  6. Salt - 1/2 tsp
  7. Hot coffee (or Boiling water ) - 1 cup
  8. Butter - 1 cup (225 gms)
  9. Sugar - 1 cup
  10. Light brown sugar - 1 cup
  11. Eggs - 3 nos, room temperature
  12. Vanilla extract - 2 tsp
  13. Milk - 1 cup, room temperature
  14. Canned Cherries (drained) - 1 cup

Method :

1.   Preheat the oven 180 C.  Grease and line up the baking pan with parchment paper.

2.   Mix together unsweetened chocolate, cocoa powder and hot coffee / water.   Stir well until the mixture is smooth and bring it room temperature.

3.   Sieve together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Keep aside.

4.   In a mixing bowl, beat butter until smooth and slowly add the sugar.  Beat until smooth and fluffy.  

5.   Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.  Add the vanilla extract and chocolate mixture, cherries - 1/2 cup and beat to combine.

6.   Add the flour mixture alternating with the milk, starting and ending with flour mixture.  Beat until the mixture in incorporated nicely.

7.   Pour the batter in the prepared baking pan and bake it for 30 mins or until the toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Allow the cake to cook completely and slice them for frosting.


For Frosting :

8.   Whip together whipping cream, vanilla extract & powdered sugar to stiff peaks.

Assembling :

9.  Place the first layer of cake.  Sprinkle some sugar water / cherries drained sugar syrup over the cake and spread the whipped cream evenly.   Arrange the balance cherries over the cream and place he second layer of cake.   Repeat the step.

10.  Frost and decorate the cake.  Refrigerate over night.


Happy baking :)

January 11, 2017

Oats Khichdi !!


If you are looking for healthy breakfast, then oats chichi made with tomato and vegetables is an interesting recipe that can be served with hot tea or coffee.


Ingredients :
  1. Oil - 1 tsp
  2. Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
  3. Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
  4. Green chillies - 2 nos
  5. Onion - 1 no, chopped
  6. Tomato - 1 no, chopped
  7. Oats - 3/4 cup
  8. Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
  9. Salt to taste
  10. Vegetables (Carrot, beans, peas, potato, corn, capsicum) - 1 cup
  11. Moong dal - 1/4 cup (washed and soaked for one hour)
  12. Coriander leaves
  13. Mint leaves
  14. A ping of hing
  15. Ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
  16. Water - 3 cups
  17. Lemon juice - 1 tsp

Method :

1.   Heat oil in the pressure cooker, add cumin seeds, mustard seeds and finely chopped onions.  Saute till tender.

2.   Add chopped green chillies, tomato, hing, mint leaves, ginger garlic paste, turmeric powder, cut vegetables and salt to taste.  Saute for few mins.

3.   Add moong dal, oats, lemon juice and water.  Pressure cook the khichdi till done.  Garnish it with coriander leaves.


Note :

1.  Instead of green chillies, we can add chilly powder or even both.

2.  Instead of moong dal, we can use masoor dal too.


Serve immediately.



January 9, 2017

Indo-Chinese Chicken Fried rice (Without Soy sauce)


Healthy and delicious Indo-chinese fried rice made without soy sauce.  


Ingredients :

For chicken :

  1. Chicken breast - 250 gms
  2. Salt to taste
  3. Ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
  4. Lemon juice - 1 tsp
  5. Chilly powder - 1 tsp
  6. Cornflour - 2 tbsp
For Rice :
  1. Basmati rice / Jasmine rice - 1 cup
  2. Water - 1 1/2 cup
  3. Salt to taste
  4. Lemon juice - 1 tsp
  5. Olive oil - 1 tsp

Other Ingredients :
  1. Sesame oil - 1 tbsp
  2. Garlic - 3 pods
  3. Green chillies - 2 nos , optional
  4. Vegetables (carrot, beans, capsicum, spring onions) - 1 cup, sliced
  5. Onion - 1 no,sliced
  6. Salt to taste
  7. Black pepper powder - 1 tsp

Method :

For chicken :

1.   Clean and cut the chicken into small pieces.  Mix together salt, ginger garlic paste, lemon juice, chilly powder and cornflour.  Shallow fry (or) deep fry them till done.  Keep aside.

For Rice :

2.   Clean the rice and mix together water, salt to taste, lemon juice and olive oil.  Pressure cook them till done.  Allow them to cool completely.


Fried Rice :

3.   Heat sesame oil in the pan, add garlic pods, onion, spring onion and vegetables.  Saute over high flame till vegetable are crispy.

4.   Add black pepper powder, salt to taste, green chillies, fried chicken pieces and rice.  Over low heat, mix together and garnish it with spring onions.


Serve hot.

January 6, 2017

Grated Mango Pickle | Instant Mango Pickle !!!


My mom makes this mango pickle for me always.  This pickle can be stored in the fridge for 6 months.  It requires less cooking time and can be served within two hours. I like to have this with upma, lemon rice, curd rice and with dal.  We can use mustard oil or sesame oil for this preparation.  Sometimes, I also use olive oil for variations.   



Ingredients :

  1. Sour raw mango - 2 small sized ( around 1 cup)
  2. Sesame oil - 3/4 cup
  3. Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp + 1/2 tsp
  4. Methi seeds (Fenugreek seeds)- 1/2 tsp
  5. Salt  to taste
  6. Red chilly powder - 2 tsp ( or to taste)
  7. Turmeric powder- 1/2 tsp
  8. Hing- 1/2  tsp

Method :

1.   Clean the mango and dry them completely.  Grate them finely along with the skin.  Mix together grated mango and salt.  Keep aside for few mins.

2.   Dry roast 1/2 tsp of mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds.  Cool them completely and grind them to fine powder.  Keep aside.

3.   Heat oil in the pan, add 1/2 tsp of mustard seeds.  Add hing, chilly powder and grated mango.  Keep the heat over low heat.  Stir for 2 mins and switch off the flame.

4.   Add grounded spice powder.  Mix well.

5.   Store the pickle in the clean container. 


Note :

1.   If the mango is not sour, add lemon juice.

2.  Refrigerate the pickle after two days.

3.   Pickle stays good for 6 months in the fridge.

4.   Garlic can also be added along with the mango.

5.  Sterilise & dry the container before storing the pickle.

January 4, 2017

Hyderabadi Chicken Curry - Simply Delicious !!!


I make this Hyderabadi chicken curry for special occasion.  This curry is rich in flavour & taste great with rice and rotis.  Special kind of paste is prepared using peanuts, poppy seeds, sesame seeds and red chillies and cooked along with other spices.  Addition of coconut milk makes this dish outstanding and perfect menu in any party table. 


Ingredients :

  1. Chicken - 1 kg
  2. Bay leaf - 1 no
  3. Cinnamon stick - 1 inch 
  4. Green cardamom - 2 nos
  5. Cloves - 3 nos
  6. Black pepper corns - 10 nos
  7. Hing - 1/4 tsp
  8. Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
  9. Curry leaves - 2 tbsp
  10. Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
  11. Onion - 1 no
  12. Sesame seeds - 1 tbsp
  13. Peanuts - 2 tbsp
  14. Dry red chillies - 4 nos
  15. Poppy seeds - 1 tbsp
  16. Ginger garlic paste - 1 tbsp
  17. Salt to taste
  18. Chilly powder - to taste 
  19. Coriander powder - 1 tbsp
  20. Coconut milk - 1/4 cup
  21. Water
  22. Tamarind juice - 1 tbsp
  23. Oil - 1 tbsp
  24. Coriander leaves for garnishing

Method :

1.   Soak poppy seeds and dry red chillies in water for 10 mins.  Grind them along with sesame seeds and peanuts.  Keep the masala aside.

2.   Heat oil in the heavy bottomed pan, add bay leaf, cinnamon stick, cardamom, cloves, black pepper corns & hing.  

3.   Add mustard seeds, curry leaves and finely chopped onions.  Saute till tender.

4.   Add ginger garlic paste, turmeric powder and salt to taste.


5.   Add cleaned and cut chicken pieces and grounded masala.  Cook for few mins.

6.   Add chilly powder, coriander powder, tamarind juice and water around 2 cups.   Cover and cook till done.  

7.   Once the chicken is cooked, add coconut milk and switch of the flame.  Garnish it with coriander leaves.


Serve with hot steamed rice / rotis /  naan / parathas.
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