Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Vegetable Stew Recipe - How to make kerala style vegetable stew

One of my friend had been asking me to post the recipe of this vegetable stew for a very long time. Minimal ingredients and the simplicity of the recipe is what wins you over.  The stew is flavored with warm aromatic spices along with giner, fresh coconut milk and finally tempered with coconut oil. It goes well with idiappam or appam or even with plain steamed rice.


 Ingredients

Onion -1
Ginger - 1 inch piece
Garlic - 3 cloves
Green chilli - 2 slit, adjust according to taste
Mixed vegetables - 2 cups ( carrot, beans, potato, cauliflower, peas etc)
Thin coconut milk – 1 1/2 cup
Thick coconut milk – 3/4 cup
Pepper powder - 1/2 tsp
Salt as required

For the seasoning

Bay leaf -1
Cloves -2
Cinnamon - 1 inch piece

Final seasoning

Coconut oil - 1 tsp
Curry leaves - few

Pre-Preparation - How to extract coconut milk

Take coconut gratings of a medium sized fresh coconut in a mixie jar, add 1 cup of water and grind well for couple of minutes. Strain the ground coconut using a strainer. You can even use tea strainer or a colander lined with a soft cotton cloth or cheesecloth. Press it with a ladle or squeeze to extract as much milk as possible. What you got now is the first extract or thick coconut milk or onnam paal. This thick coconut milk cannot be boiled, if boiled it will curdle. 

Now add 1 more cup of water to the already ground coconut and grind it again nicely. Again strain the ground coconut with a strainer. The milk extracted now is the second extract or thin coconut milk or rendam paal which is thinner than the first. This can be boiled and generally can be used for cooking vegetables or payasams.


Chop all the vegetable into medium sized pieces or cubes. Finely chop onion, garlic and ginger.

Method

Heat oil, add the ingredients mentioned under seasoning, saute for a few seconds, then add onions and garlic. Saute till onions turn transparent.

Then add ginger, green chilli and the rest of the vegetables.

Add thin coconut milk, required salt and pepper powder. Cook till the vegetables are soft.

Once the vegetables are cooked, add thick coconut milk and heat it a little. Its very important not to boil the stew after adding the thick coconut milk. The consistency of the stew should be thin.

Finally, heat a tsp of coconut oil, saute curry leaves in it for a second and add to the stew. Serve Kerala style vegetable stew with aappams or steamed rice.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Rava Kesari Recipe - How to make Rava Kesari - Easy Indian Sweets

Rava Kesari is one of my favorites. I really don't know why I kept delaying to post such an easy and basic sweet.  Today is a special day, VijosKitchenCorner is 2 years old and its our 7th wedding anniversary too. Every year we used to plan something for our anniversary. This year we were not in any celebration mood with all the floods and the scars it has left in most of the families here. VJ and his friends are volunteering to rebuild an orphanage home nearby which has been completely washed out with the floods. We hardly have any time on hand for us. So today morning I thought I can atleast prepare this quick kesari on this day, because it is very very special for us :-). Now, to the recipe.



Ingredients

Rava - 1/2 cup
Sugar - 1 cup or a little lesser than that
Water - 1 & 1/2 cups
Ghee - 1/4 cup
Cardamom - 3-4 crushed
Cashew nuts - 10-15, broken into quarters
Raisins - 10
Kesari colour - a pinch

Method

Heat a heavy bottomed pan and add a teaspoon of ghee and roast the cashew nuts until they turn golden brown. When they start turning golden brown add the raisins and fry until it puffs up. Transfer them to a separate bowl.

In the same pan add the rava and fry until a nice aroma comes out of it. Transfer the rava to a plate. Then add the water, kesari colour and the crushed cardamom to the pan and bring it to a boil. When the water starts boiling add the roasted rava, simmer and cook.

After all the water evaporates, add sugar, roasted cashews and raisins, mix well and cook on low flame until the kesari starts to leave the sides of the pan. Serve hot or warm.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Badam Halwa - Almond Halwa - Diwali Sweets - How To Make Badam Halwa

The festival of lights, Diwali is round the corner. And I have been getting requests from my friends for some new sweets. When one of my friend asked for a sweet made out of badam I remembered Chef Venkatesh Bhat making halwa out of almonds in a show. I had roughly noted then. So for an exact recipe I had to do a little bit of googling and finally adapted with this version. I had made few alterations to the sugar and ghee proportions, still the halwa was super delicious and soft.

Badam halwa is a rich and delicious Indian sweet made with pureed almonds, milk, ghee, sugar and
saffron. Stirring continuously at the right heat is the key for this recipe. Over heat can very easily
burn the halwa. Just make sure you follow the exact steps, the yummy halwa will melt in your mouth


Ingredients (serves 3-4)

Badam - 1/2 cup
Sugar - 1/2 cup
Milk - 1/2 cup
Ghee - 1/4 cup
Water - 1/4 cup (for dissolving sugar)
Yellow food colour/kesari color - a pinch
Saffron - few strands


Method

Soak almonds overnight and peel the skin. Alternatively you can boil them in hot water for a few minutes and peel the skin.




Grind almonds with 1/4 cup of milk to a smooth paste.




Take a heavy bottomed pan, (I used a non-stick pan, so that it doesn't stick to the bottom) bring 1/4 cup of water to boil, switch off the flame, add sugar and stir, so that the sugar dissolves completely.



Now add the badam paste, remaining milk, kesari color, sugar, saffron and cook on medium flame stirring continuously.



Add ghee little by little, mixing evenly. Add all the ghee except 2 tsp and cook stirring continuously on low flame.

 

It will start bubbling and spluttering. Cautiously keep stirring.



At one point, the ghee will be completely absorbed and the halwa will start leaving the sides of the pan. This took around 15 minutes for me.

Now switch off the flame, add the remaining 2 tsp of ghee and stir for about 3-4 minutes. I learnt that this is important to keep the halwa softer when it sets. The halwa will thicken even more when it cools down.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

How To Cook Corn In Pressure Cooker

What else can be a better snack on a rainy or misty evening. A boiled corn, few shakes of salt with a mild layer of butter and its all ready to munch on!


 Ingredients

Corn, salt and a little butter is what all you need.

Method

Take a pressure cooker, drop in the corn (break them into halves so that it fits well), add water, the corn should be all immersed. If you like salted corn, add some salt. Cover the cooker with its lid. Turn on the flame to high. After the first whistle, simmer for 3-5 minutes and then switch off the flame. Wait until the pressure subsides, then open and strain the water. Spread a smear layer of butte and ta..da.. boiled salted corn ready for munch'in!!

Kathirikai Rasavangi - Brinjal Rasavangi

This is the first time I am trying this rasavangi. This has been in my to-try list for a very long time. I haven't tasted this before. I came to know about this recipe couple of years back when I used to browse for a variation to our regular sambars and rasams. When I decided to make this few days back I pinged all of my brahmin friends to get the recipe :-) As always there are a number of ways to make the same dish and I got different versions too. From that I had to adopt my own version. Rasavangi is one of the traditional and authentic Tamil Brahmin recipe made using brinjals or ash gourd. I would say this is very much close to the way we prepare arachu vita sambar with a slight twist in the ingredients and you end up in different taste. A perfect alternative for the regular sambars. I prepared bitter gourd poriyal for side and it matched perfectly with the rasavangi. This is a no onion-no garlic recipe too. 



Ingredients

Toor dal - 1/2 cup
Brinjal - 1/4 kg
Tamarind - a small gooseberry size, soaked and extracted
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Hing - a pinch
Black channa - 2 tbsp, soaked overnight (optional)
Jaggery - 1/2 tsp
Salt as per taste

To Grind

Coriander seeds -1 tbsp
Bengal gram/Kadalai paruppu - 2 tsp

Pepper - 1/4 tsp or some 10 peppercorns
Red chillies - 2 or 3 ( adjust as per your spice level)
Grated coconut - 3 tbsp


For seasoning

Coconut oil - 2 tsp
Mustard seeds, urad dal, red chillies and curry leaves as per taste

Method
  1. Pressure cook the dal along with turmeric powder, mash it and set aside. Also pressure cook the black channa until soft.
  2. Meanwhile dry roast all the ingredients mentioned under "To Grind" section one by one, allow to cool down and grind to a smooth paste by adding very little water.
  3. Wash and cut brinjals lengthwise or into bite sized pieces. Keep them soaked in water until we cook them to avoid discoloration.
  4. In a broad vessel or pan take the cut brinjals and add water, turmeric powder and salt and allow the brinjals to get cooked. Once half cooked add the tamarind extract and allow to get cooked until soft. Now add the mashed dal and boiled black channa. 
  5. Then add the ground paste, jaggery and mix well. Allow this to cook for few more minutes until everything blends together. Once done, turn off the flame.
  6. Now do the seasoning. Heat 2 tsps of coconut oil, add mustard seeds, when it splutters, add urad dal, red chilli and curry leaves and pour it over the rasavangi.  Mix well and enjoy with rice.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Instant Millet Flour Dosa - Easy Millet Dosa Recipe

 I bought this Instant Millet Dosa flour few months back and tried making dosas for breakfast. I made few adjustments with the suggested making method printed at the backside of the packet and it turned out good. So, here is the recipe!


Ingredients
 
Millet Flour - 1/2 cup
Rice Flour - 1/4 cup
Big Onion - 1 small sized finely chopped
Curry Leaves - 1 tbsp, finely chopped

Coriander leaves - a fistful, finely chopped
Green Chilli - 1, chopped finely

Ginger - 1/2" piece, peeled and chopped finely
Cashews - 8-10, chopped finely (optional)
Water - 3/4 to 1 cup(adjust)
Oil - for preparing dosas
Salt - to taste


Method
  1. In a mixing bowl - add millet flour and all the ingredients except water and oil. Mix well. Now add water little by little and mix well using a whisk. Set aside for 30 mins. Then add more water and make a thin batter as we make for rawa dosas.
  2. Heat a dosa pan. Once the tawa is hot enough, take a laddle full of batter and start pouring it in a circular motion starting with the outer corners towards the center. Keep pouring until it fills the whole skillet. 
  3. Cook in medium flame.The dosa should be thin so don't pour over then we will get thick dosas. Drizzle oil and cook until the top looks cooked.Fold and serve hot with any spicy chutney or simply with idly podi.
Notes
  • The batter should be very runny. Adjust the water measurement as per the right consistency.
  • Also you should not spread the batter as we do for regular dosas, the laddle should not touch the dosa tawa itself. Hold the laddle about 10 cm height above the dosa tawa and start pouring.
  • Always use a deep curved laddle while pouring as it holds more and will cover the puter circle fully in one go.Then again you can take the batter another time to fill in the center areas.
  • It is very important that the dosa tawa should be really hot. When you pour you should see the batter spreading by itself with tiny holes in it that the right contistency of the batter and it shows the dosa tawa is perfect for making dosas.
  • You can even pour few drops of water to check if the dosa pan is hot.If you hear a bold shh sound then the dosa tawa is ready.
  • After you make 2-3 dosas check the batter, if it becomes thick adjust by adding little water. Remember to mix the batter well everytime you prepare a dosa.

Apple Dates Milkshake - Apple Milkshake - Healthy Milkshake

Milkshakes are always nutritious, quick and easy to prepare. Apple and dates are a wonderful and healthy combination, so you can have this for breakfast and they leaves you feel healthy and filling for the entire day. Adding a drop of vanilla essence enhances the flavor and kids would love this for sure. You can also pack this for your kids snack box or for meal time.


 Ingredients

Apple - 1
Seedless Dates - 10-12
Milk - 1.5 cups (chilled or plain)
Vanilla essence - a drop or two
Honey or sugar - 1 tsp or as per taste
Almonds or Pistachios for garnish

Method
  • Wash the apple, peel the skin and cut into cubes.  Chop the dates into small pieces. Transfer the chopped apples and dates to a blender or mixer. 
  • Add little milk, vanilla essence and honey/sugar and blend until smooth. Now add the remaining milk and blend until mixed well. Add more milk if you want a thinner consistency.
  • Transfer to glasses, garnish with chopped almonds or pistachios and serve as such or chilled.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Mushroom Kuzhambu - Kaalaan Kuzhambu

Mushrooms have wonderful health benefits . It is been said that Mushrooms contain some of the most powerful natural medicines on the planet. They are a low-calorie food (i.e no fat, no cholestrol), high in proteins, vitamins and minerals, fiber rich etc. And so, eventually they are natural disease fighters. Including mushrooms in our diet regularly boosts our immune system and keeps the body healthy.
This mushroom kuzhambu is a wonderful combination for plain rice or with idly, dosas. Here comes the recipe.



Ingredients

Mushroom - 1 pack
Onions - 2
Red Chilli Powder - 1 tsp
Cumin Powder - 2 tsp
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
Coconut Milk - 1 cup
Salt as per taste

To Temper

Oil - 2 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Urad dal - 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves - few

Method

Extract Coconut Milk -Take gratings of 1/4th of a medium sized coconut in a mixie jar, grind for few seconds. Then, add about 1/4 to 1/2 cup of water and grind to a smooth paste. Strain the ground coconut using a tea strainer or a soft cloth. Press it with a ladle or squeeze to extract as much milk as possible. For this recipe the coconut milk should be thick, only then you will get a nice flavor and taste. So do not add more water for extracting more milk. Coconut milk is ready. Set aside.


Clean the mushrooms well and cut into 2 halves.Chop the onions. Set aside.
  1.  Take a pressure cooker, add oil, once it is hot enough add the mustard seeds and allow to splutter.  Add urad dal and curry leaves, fry until dal turns golden brown.
  2. Add the chopped onions and fry until they turn transparent.
  3. Then add the chopped mushrooms and all the spice powders along with the salt. Saute for 3-4 minutes.
  4. Then add the coconut milk and a little less than 1/4 cups of water. Stir well. Cover the pressure cooker and cook for 3 whistles. Turn off and allow the pressure to release on its own. Serve hot with plain rice along with papads or with idly or dosa.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Jeera Rice - Jeera Pulao - How to make Jeera Rice

Jeera rice or Jeera Pulao is a very simple and flavorful rice that can be prepared in a few minutes with very few ingredients. You don't need to have any vegetables in hand for preparing this aromatic rice. It is the simplest of all flavored rice and goes well with most of the north indian gravies or dals that we usually prepare for roti/chapati. Raitas will not go good with this rice. Here comes the recipe for Jeera Rice!



Ingredients

Basmati Rice - 1 cup
Water - 2 cups  
Salt as per taste

For the seasoning

Ghee - 1 1/2 tbsp
Cinnamon - 2 inch piece
Bay leaf - 1
Clove - 2
Jeera/Cumin Seeds - 2 tsp


Method
   
Wash and soak basmati rice in water for 20-30 minutes. Drain and keep it aside.

In a pressure cooker heat ghee and add cumin seeds, bay leaf, cinnamon and clove. Saute for a       minute. Now add the soaked and drained rice and fry for 2-3 minutes. 

Then add 2 cups of water and required salt. Close the lid and cook for 1 whistle in high flame and simmer for 2 minutes. Once the pressure subsides completely, open the lid and fluff it up with a fork gently taking care not to break the grains. Enjoy hot with any gravy or dal of your choice.

Peas Pulao - Matar Pulao Recipe

Peas pulao is my lo's favorite rice varieties. He loves to pick those sweet and soft cooked peas, eat them first and always asks for more peas :-) This pulao can be done in a jiffy and also tastes delicious. I would prefer using fresh peas over the frozen peas, as the aroma from fresh peas is what makes this dish inviting. I usually pressure cook my pulaos as it takes less time, alternatively you can also make them in pots or pans or even in rice cooker.


Ingredients 

Basmati rice - 1 cup
Onion - 1 big sized, cut lengthwise
Green chillies - 2 slit
Ginger garlic paste -1 tsp
Green peas (fresh or frozen)-1/2 cup
Fresh mint leaves - 15 nos approximately
Coriander leaves - fistful
Salt as required
Water - 2 cups

Seasoning


Oil - 1 1/2 tbsp (or oil + ghee)
Cloves -2
Cardamom -1
Cinnamon -1 inch piece

Method

Soak basmati rice for 20 minutes. Drain the water completely and keep it aside.

Heat oil in a pressure cooker and add the ingredients mentioned under "Seasoning" section. Saute for a few seconds, then  add  chopped onions, slit green chilli and saute until onions turn light brown.

Add ginger garlic paste and saute for a few more minutes. Add peas, chopped coriander leaves and mint leaves. Give a quick stir. Then add rice and saute until the water (if any) evaporates.

Add 2 cups of water, required salt and bring it to a boil.  Close the lid and cook for 1 whistle in high flame and simmer for 2 more minutes. Once the pressure subsides, open the cooker,  fluff the rice with a fork gently and serve hot with any raita of your choice and pudhina chutney.

Paneer Pulao - Paneer Pulav - Paneer Recipes

As I have already mentioned Pulaos are my favorite one pot meal for their easy to prepare thing and for the mild flavor that they give. A simple raita is all that you may need to complete the  meal. Or you can also prepare any gravies or curries to give a rich taste. Grinding fresh masala for this pulao helps for a better taste.  Also make sure the paneer is in room temperature  for preparing this pulao. As paneer has a bland taste it is important not to miss the  green chilli-ginger-garlic paste, mint and coriander leaves for this pulao.


Ingredients

Basmati Rice - 1 cup
Paneer - 150 gms
Onion - 1, sliced lengthwise
Fennel seeds - 1/2 tsp
Cardamom - 1
Cloves - 2
Cinnamon - 1/2" piece
Bay leaf - 1
Salt as per taste
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Oil - 2 tsp
Ghee - 2 tsp
Water- 2 cups


To Grind
Cloves - 2
Cinnamon - 1/2" piece
Marathi Moggu - 1
Garlic pods - 4 or 5
Ginger - 1/2" piece
Mint leaves - 10-12
Coriander leaves - a fistful
Green chillies - 2

Method
  1.  Wash and soak basmati rice in water for 20 mins. Meanwhile in a dry mixer powder the ingredients mentioned under "To Grind" column. Need not be a smooth paste, coarse powder consistency is enough.
  2. Heat a pan and add oil and ghee and add fennel seeds, cardamom, cinnamon stick, bay leaf and cloves and saute for a minute. Then add the onions and saute until they turn transparent.
  3. Then add the coarsely grinded powder and saute for couple of more minutes. Now add the soaked and drained basmati rice and fry gently without breaking the rice grains. Fry for 2-3 minutes and then add the cubed paneer, turmeric powder and salt. Add 2 cups of water, close the lid and pressure cook for 1 minute in high flame and simmer for 2 minutes. 
  4. Wait until the pressure subsides completely. Gently fluff it out with a fork and serve hot with any raita of your choice.

Mushroom Biryani - Kaalaan Biryani Recipe - How to make Mushroom Biryani

South Indian Style spicy Mushroom Biryani is always a winner. Mushrooms cooked with spices fills your house with wonderful aroma. And the best part is this biryani is very simple to prepare, but everyone will love it. Just keep in mind that you have to prepare this biryani with Basmati rice for the best taste. Now, here is the recipe!



Ingredients

Basmati Rice - 1 cup
Water - 2 cups
Cleaned button mushrooms - 3/4 cup
Onion - 1, chopped lengthwise
Tomato puree - from 2 medium sized tomatoes
Thick curd - 2 tbsp
Ginger Garlic paste - 1.5 tsp
Garam masala powder - 2 tsp
Red chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
Oil - 2 tsp
Ghee - 2 tsp
Salt as per taste

To Grind

Coriander leaves - a fistful
Mint leaves - 15 nos approximately
Green chilli - 1

To Temper 

Fennel seeds - 1/2 tsp
Cloves -2
Cardamom -1
Cinnamon - 1/4 inch piece
Bayleaf -1

Method
  1. Wash the basmati rice well and soak it in water for around 20 minutes. 
  2. Meanwhile grind the ingredients mentioned under "To Grind" column into a smooth paste. 
  3. Wash and clean the mushrooms well and cut them into desired sizes. Do not cut them too small. 
  4. Heat oil+ghee in a pressure cooker and add the items under 'to temper' then add the chopped onions and saute until they turn transparent.  Then add the ginger garlic paste and saute for a minute.
  5. Then add the tomato puree and add red chilli powder and garam masala to it. Allow to cook until the raw smell goes off completely. 
  6. Then add the coriander-mint paste and allow this to cook for couple of mins.  Then add the mushrooms, salt and mix well. Saute until water leaves. Now add curd, mix well and add 2 cups of water. 
  7. Once the water starts boiling add the basmati rice and close the lid and cook for a whistle in high flame and simmer it for 2 mins. Allow the pressure to subside and then open the lid.
  8. Gently fluff the rice with a fork without breaking the grains. Serve hot with any raita.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Ridge Gourd Skin Thuvayal - Peerkangai Thol Thuvayal

Ridge gourd peel thuvayal or Peerkangai Thol thuvayal is an easy thuvayal recipe made with ridge gourd peel or skin and other minimal ingredients.  Never let your ridge gourd peel go waste and try this easy thuvaiyal recipe which works as great side dish with dosa, idli and steamed rice. Rice mixed with this thuvayal and ghee along with some papad or potato chips is great combination to relish. 

 


Ingredients
 
Ridge gourd (peerkangai) skin - 1 cup  (or skin from 1 or 2 ridge gourds)
Tamarind - small marble sized ball
Grated coconut -2 tbsp
Hing and salt as per taste
 
For Seasoning
 
Oil -2 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Urad dal - 1 tsp
Channa dal - 2tsps
Whole black pepper -1/4 tsp
Red chillies - 2 or 3

Method

Wash the ridge gourd well, peel the skin and chop it into small pieces.You can use the flesh for preparing kootu or chutney or poriyal. 

Heat oil in a pan and do the seasoning with the ingredients mentioned under "For Seasoning". Then add the chopped ridge gourd skin, hing, salt and tamarind and fry until the skin turns tender. Turn off the flame, add grated coconut, mix well and allow to cool down completely

Then transfer to a mixer and grind to coarse paste. This thuvayal can be served with rasam sadam or curd rice or even can be mixed with hot rice along with a tsp of ghee or oil.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Curry Leaves Rice - Kariveppilai Sadam Recipe

Curry leaves are commonly used in Indian seasoning which enhances the taste and flavor of the dish. Most of the times we used to throw these away without knowing the fact that these curry leaves are packed with carbohydrates, fiber, calcium, phosphorous, irons and vitamins like vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin E, curry leaves help your heart function better, fights infections and can enliven your hair and skin with vitality.The best way to make your family consume curry leaves is to cook them in the form of rice. I have also uploaded a Curry Leaf thokku recipe earlier. Here comes the recipe for Curry Leaves Rice.



Ingredients

Cooked rice - 1 bowl
Salt as per taste

To Temper

Gingely oil - 2 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp

Urad dal - 1 tsp
Channa dal - 1 tsp
Peanuts - 1 tbsp (optional)
Hing and turmeric powder - a pinch

To roast and grind

Curry leaves - 1 cup, tightly packed
Channa dal - 2 tsp
Coriander seeds - 1 tsp
Sesame seeds - 1/2 tsp
Dry red chillies - 2

Method
  1. Rinse the curry leaves well and allow them to dry completely. Heat a pan and dry roast all the ingredients except curry leaves mentioned under "To roast and grind" until they turn golden brown. 
  2. Then add the curry leaves and saute for couple of minutes until they turn crisp. Allow to cool and then grind to a coarse powder. 
  3. Take a wide pan add oil and do the seasoning with the ingredients mentioned under "To Temper". Roast them until all the ingredients turn golden brown. Add hing and turmeric powder, mix well and turn off the flame. 
  4. Add the rice, required salt and the ground curry leaves powder. Mix well. Serve with papad or raita.
Notes
  • You can even make this powder in bulk and prepare mix it with rice as and when needed.
  • You can also add cashews instead of peanuts.
  • You can also use this as a side dish for idly/dosa
  • Finely chopped onions can also be sauted till golden brown and added to the rice as we do for biryanis. This will enhance the flavor of the rice

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Colorful Mini Idlis For Kids - Cocktail Mini Idlis

Last week Prajju had Circle day in his school and kids were asked to bring Idly for their snacks. I was planning to send him mini idlis, but then I did not want to be the usual mini idlis. I had some mint chutney in hand which he loves the most. Idly podi is also his favorite. So I thought of giving a slight twist to the regular ones. And I had arranged them in a toothpick too. They looked very appealing, the moment Prajju saw his snack box in the morning he was very excited, needless to say the snack box was empty when he returned home :-)



Ingredients

Mini Idlis - 10
Idly podi -1 tbsp
Mint Chutney - 2 tbsps
Oil - 1 tbsp

Method

Prepare the mini idlis and store in a hot pack. When you are about to serve or pack the snack/lunch box make these colorful and flavor ful mini idlis.

Preferably in a non-stick kadai, heat few tsps of oil and add the idly podi to it and give a quick stir. Then add 5 or any number of mini idlis as per your need to it and toss well until it is coated evenly with the podi on all sides.  Mini Podi Idli is ready. Transfer to a seperate bowl.

In the same kadai add few more tsps of oil and add the mint chutney, a quick stir and then add the remaining idlys. Mix well until it is evenly coated on all sides. Switch off the flame and transfer to the bowl. Mini mint idlis are ready too.

Take a toothpick and arrange these idlis and per your preference and pack them to your kids lunch box.!!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Ragi Wheat Chapati - How to make Ragi Chapati

These days I have been preparing chapati's frequently for dinner. So, my son would love to have variations in it like Aloo Paratha, Cheese stuffed chapati, panner paratha, raddish paratha (will share the recipe soon) etc. And to this list got added this Ragi Wheat chapati. Ragi flour makes you feel filling too. Try this simple recipe!




Ingredients
Wholewheat flour/ atta - 1 cup Ragi flour - 1/2 cup
Oil - 1 tsp Salt - little to taste Warm water - 1/2 cup or less to kneed dough
Method




Take a wide bow and add the flour, salt and oil. Mix well.
To this slowly add water little by little and form a pilable dough. The dough should be really soft, only then you will get soft chapathi's. 
Keep covered with a wet cloth for 10-15 mins. Then divide it to equal size balls and flatten using a rolling pin into chapatis. 
On a hot skillet add the rolled chapati dough and cook on both sides until done. Refer to my Chapati post for more tips for soft chapatis. Serve hot with subji of your choice.

Tomato Peanuts Chutney

Tomato Peanut Chutney is easy delicious chutney for idli, dosa or for any South Indian tiffin/snacks items. The peanutty flavor is just delightful. Here comes the recipe!



Ingredients

Ripe tomatoes - 3
Peanuts - 2 tbsps
Dry red chillies - 2
Salt as per taste

To temper

Oil - 1 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp
Urad dal - 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves - few

Method
  1. Fry peanuts in a pan until they turn golden brown. Set aside
  2. In a pan, add a little bit of oil, add red chillies and fry. Then add chopped tomatoes  and salt and saute until it turns mushy. Allow it to cool down. 
  3. Add the peanuts in a mixer and grind to a coarse powder. Now add the cooked tomatoes and grind to a smooth paste. Transfer to a bowl and do the tempering. Enjoy with idly/any dosa recipes.

Oats Upma with vegetables - Indian Oats Breakfast Recipe

I have been getting requests for sharing healthy as well as easy to prepare recipes. Oats upma is one such, you hardly need 15 mins for the entire process. You can chop the vegetabes parallelly as you dry roast the oats and then you can prepare this upma in less than 5 mins. Eat it hot and it tastes heavenly with  all those crunchy veggies. This oats upma can be served plain, drizzled with few drops of lemon juice or also served with coconut chutney. You will enjoy every spoonful of it.



Ingredients

Oats - 1 cup
Water - 1 cup or little less than that
Onion - 1
Green chilli - 1
Mixed vegetables - as per preferance (carrots, beans, cooked peas, corn, capsicum etc)
Salt, hing, turmeric powder as per taste
Corriander leaves - a fistful, chopped finely (optional)
Lemon juice - 1 tsp (optional)

To Temper

Oil - 2 tsps
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Channa dal - 1 1/2 tsp
Urad dal - 1 tsp
Curry leaves - few

Method
  1. Dry roast the oats until you get a nice aroma, say for 3-4 minutes approximately. Parallelly chop the vegetables into small cubes.
  2. Heat a pan, add oil and do the tempering. Then add green chillies and onion and saute until the onion turns transparent. Then add the vegetables and saute for few more minutes. Now add salt, turmeric powder and hing and half quantity of the water and allow to boil.
  3. Then add the oats and mix well. Oats will imediately absorb all the water. Stir well and drizzle the remaining water and mix well. Keep covered and cook for 5-7 minutes or until done. Stir inbetween. If the mixture looks very dry, drizzle few more drops of water and cover and cook again. 
  4. Once done, turn off the flame and add lemon juice. Mix well and garnish with coriander leaves. Serve Hot!
Note:
  • You can add ginger for an enhanced flavor and to aid the digestion process.
  • Adjust the water quantity as per the quality of your oats. Start with half the ratio of oats and then drizzle little by little. This way you can have the right texture for the upma.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Baby Corn Rice Recipe

This baby corn rice is slightly different from the Baby Corn Pulav that I had posted earlier and is more flavorful. Looks very much appealing too. Try this simple recipe next time when you buy baby corns.



Ingredients

Basmati Rice - 1 cup
Water - 1.5 - 2 cups (adjust as per your soaking time and quality of the rice)
Baby Corn - 6-8 cut into small pieces
Onion - 1, cut  lengthwise
Curd - 1 tbsp
Red Chilly Powder - 1 tsp
Corriander Powder - 1 tsp
Garam Masala - 1/2 tsp
Salt, turmeric powder, hing as per taste

To Temper

Bay leaf - 1
Cloves - 2
Cinnamon stick - 1 or 2
Oil - 1 tsp
Ghee - 1 tbsp

To Grind

Onion - 1
Garlic - 5 or 6 cloves
Ginger - 1/2 inch piece
Mint leaves - 10

Method
  1. Wash the basmati rice well and soak for 15-20 mins.You have to wash the rice well before soaking. If you do the reverse process the rice grains will break and the pulav will not look good.
  2. Grind the ingredients listed under "To Grind" to a fine paste by adding little water.
  3. In a pressure cooker, add oil and ghee and do the tempering with the list of ingredients mentioned. Then add the onions and saute till they turn translucent. Then add.the baby corn, corriander powder, garam masala, hing, turmeric and the ground paste.
  4. Saute until the raw smell goes off, this might take around 5 or 6 mins. Then add curd, rice, water and required salt and pressure cook for 1 whistle and simmer for 2-3 minutes and then turn off the flame. 
  5. Once the pressure gets released fluff it up with fork without breaking the rice. Enjoy with any kind of raita.
Nutritional Information

Baby corn is a cereal of wonder which comes with loads of nutrition. It is a good source of folic acid, potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin C and fiber. Baby corns are low in fat and a good source of protein. It is said to have anti-oxidant which is supposed to prevent cancers and heart diseases.

Baby Corn Pulao/Easy Baby Corn Pulav

This recipe has been sitting in my drafts for more than a year and finally I am posting it now. Pulaos always make a great one pot meal and they go good with any kind of raita and are much easier to prepare too.This pulao is very flavorful and the crunchy baby corns adds more taste to the rice. So, here is the recipe!


 Ingredients

Basmati Rice - 1 cup
Water - 1.5 - 2 cups (adjust as per your soaking time and quality of the rice)
Baby Corn - 6-8 cut into small pieces
Onion - 1, cut  lengthwise
Mint leaves - 10
Corriander leaves - fistful
Ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp

To Temper

Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Bay leaf - 1
Cloves - 2
Cinnamon stick - 1
Oil - 2 tsps
Ghee - 1 tsp

Method
  1. Wash the basmati rice well and soak for 15-20 mins.You have to wash the rice well before soaking. If you do the reverse process the rice grains will break and the pulav will not look good.
  2. In a pressure cooker, heat oil and ghee. Add cumin seeds and saute for few seconds. And then add the bay leaf, cloves, cinnamon and saute for few more seconds. Now, add the ginger garlic paste and fry until the raw smell goes off. Then add the onions and saute till they turn translucent. Then add.the mint leaves, chopped coriander leaves and baby corn and mix well.
  3. Then add required amount of water, salt and the soaked rice (drain the water before adding to the pressure cooker) and pressure cook for 1 whistle and simmer for 2-3 minutes and then turn off the flame. 
  4. Once the pressure gets released fluff it up with fork without breaking the rice. Enjoy with any kind of raita or gravies
Nutritional Information

Baby corn is a cereal of wonder which comes with loads of nutrition. It is a good source of folic acid, potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin C and fiber. Baby corns are low in fat and a good source of protein. It is said to have anti-oxidant which is supposed to prevent cancers and heart diseases.

Baby Corn Stir Fry/Baby Corn Sabzi

These days Prajju has become a die hard fan of baby corns due to its crunchiness. He loves it in any form. Today I prepared Corn Pulav for him for lunch. And there were few left over baby corns and I made these stir fry for dinner. The moment he smelled the baby corns he instantly wanted to have them. He didn't even allow me to click few pics. I had to compromise him for few and only then I was able to click the pictures :-) This is a very easy side dish which pairs up well with rice or rotis. Here comes the recipe!



Ingredients

Baby corn - 7 or 8, cut into bite sizes
Onion - 1
Capsicum - 1/2, cut into small cubes
Tomato sauce - 1 tsp
Soy sauce - 1 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Oil - for tempering
Salt - as per taste
Sesame seeds - 1/2 tsp, for added flavor (optional)

Method
  1. If using sesame seeds dry roast them and set aside. 
  2. Heat oil in a pan, add the cumin seeds. Saute for few seconds and then add the ginger garlic paste. Fry till the raw smell goes off. Then add the onions and saute until they turn transparent.
  3. Then add the capsicum and the baby corns. Add tomato sauce and soy sauce and little bit of salt. Mix well and cook until the raw smell goes off. Turn them every now and then to make sure it doesnt get burnt. At the same time baby corns and the capsicum should retain their crunchiness. So do not over cook.
  4. Once done, turn off the flame and sprinkle the sesame seeds all over and transfer to a serving bowl. Enjoy with any rice or rotis.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Eggless Mango Mousse Recipe

Mango season is here and I prepared this mango mousse which was in my to-make list for a long time. Mango Mousse is a very creamy, light and airy in texture dessert which can be prepared in less than 15 minutes. This is super easy to prepare and tastes so yummy. Only three ingredients, eggless, gelatin free or no cooking needed. You can also make this a day ahead if you are planning for a party.


 Ingredients

Mango Puree - 1/2 cup
Fresh cream/Heavy cream - 1/2 cup
Sugar - 2-3 tbsp, adjust as per taste

Method

If using fresh mangoes, puree them in a mixer/blender. Set aside.
Take a wide bowl and add the fresh cream and sugar, using a hand mixer whip until it forms soft peaks. Now add the mango puree and gently fold in using a spatula until well combined. All done, transfer it to a serving bowl and refrigerate for a minimun of 2 hours. Top it up with fresh mango pieces while serving.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Jangri - Jangiri - How to make Jangiri

I have tried my hands on with Jangiris only once and that was couple of years back, when I had no idea of food blogging. So I hadn't clicked any pictures of it then. From the day I started sharing my recipes I wanted to make them again and post the recipe. This time I prepared this for double dhamaka. Its a treat for VJ's bday and my FB page (https://www.facebook.com/ViJosKitchenCorner)  crossed 1500+ likes. That calls for a treat rite? :-)

Making these jangiris are not very tough. With little bit of patience and practice we can get perfect ones. Do try this recipe and let me know!!



Ingredients

Whole urad dal - 1 cup
Rice flour - 2 tsp
Orange food color/kesar color - 1/4 tsp

For sugar syrup

Sugar - 2 cups
Water - just to immerse sugar
Lemon juice - 1/2 tsp
Rose essence - 3 or 4 drops (optional)

Method
  1. Wash and soak the urad dal for 2 hours. Drain excess water and grind it to a smooth and fluffy batter, without adding much water, as we do for medhu vada. Add rice flour and food color and mix well. Beat the batter nicely with your hands. Beating the batter is very important as it makes the batter more fluffy. Now the jangiri batter is ready.
  2. Take a ziplock cover or a thick plastic cover and make a hole with a thin nail, the hole should be very tiny.
  3. Prepare the sugar syrup - Heat a heavy bottomed pan, add sugar. Add water just to immerse the sugar. Stir the sugar syrup occasionally, boil until the syrup is sticking in hands or just when a string starts to form. Now add rose essence and stir it well. Switch off the flame. To prevent the sugar syrup from crystallizing,  add half a teaspoon of lemon juice. If the sugar syrup gets crystallized after some time we can again keep in low flame and add a tablespoon of water and dilute it again.
  4. Start piping the Jangiris. Fill half the cover with batter and try piping on a plate first to practice the patterns. First pipe 2 circles, then on the top of it make smaller circles without stopping. Try this once or twice before piping directly into the oil. 
  5. Take a  broad and flat bottomed pan with less oil, say 1inch depth. Heat the oil and reduce the flame to low and start piping the jangiris. The oil should not get fully heated,when it starts forming small bubbles in the bottom start the process.
  6. Fry on both sides until it turns golden brown and crispy. Use a stainless steel rod or a wooden skewer for flipping and taking it out. Handle the jangiris carefully, while touching the jangiris with skewer/rod if they feel soft they need to be cooked for few more seconds. 
  7. Once cooked remove it from oil and drop it into the prepared sugar syrup. Press it gently with a ladle inside the sugar syrup. Let is soak, meantime we will prepare the second batch as we did the first one. 
  8. Once the second batch is ready remove the first batch from the sugar syrup and keep it on a plate to dry, allow them a standing time of 30 mins to 1 hour for best taste. Then drop the second batch of jangiris into the sugar syrup. In this way repeat the process for the rest of the batter. Yummy and delicious jangiris are ready

Friday, February 13, 2015

Green Moong Pulav - Green Moong Rice

I always love preparing one pot meal, the reason being very obvious, they are healthy and quick. Here is another nutritious dish which also can be made when you run out of vegetables. That too prepare this with the sprouted moong, it is a perfect healthy lunch box recipe. Serve it on its own or with a spicy side dish or with a simple raita.



Ingredients

Sprouted moong dal or soaked moong dal - 1/2 cup
Uncooked rice - 1 cup
Water - 3 cups
Salt - as required
Onion - 1, sliced lengthwise
Green chilli - 1
Ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
Hing - a pinch

To Temper

Ghee - 1 tsp
Oil - 2 tsps
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Cinnamon stick - 2, 1" piece
Cloves - 2
Curry leaves - few

Method
  1. Wash and soak the rice in water for 15 minutes. Simultaneously prepare the other ingredients and start with the tempering.
  2. Heat ghee and oil, add cumin seeds and once they splutters add cinnamon stick, cloves and curry leaves. They add slit green chilli and onions. Saute until the onion turns transparent. Add ginger garlic paste and saute until the raw smell goes off.
  3. Then add green moong and hing. Mix well and add 3 cups of water. Add required amount of salt, allow the water to come to a boil. Now add the rice, give a stir, close the pressure cooker and cook for 3 whistles and simmer for 5 minutes. 
  4. Once the pressure subsides, mix gently without breaking the grains. Serve hot with any spicy gravy or a simple raita or your choice.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Sponge Dosa - Soft Sponge Dosai Recipe

Bored of preparing the regular dosa varieties? Try this sponge dosa, it is very soft and spongy and stays like that even after 4-5 hours of preparation. It tastes great with any chutney varieties. You don't have to add any cooking soda/baking powder for this recipe.



Ingredients

Idly rice - 1 cup
Poha - 1/2 cup
Urad dal - 1/4 cup
Fenugreek seeds - 1 tsp
Salt as needed

Method

Wash and soak rice, urad dal and fenugreek seeds for a minimum of 3 hours. After 3 hours, wash poha and add it in the mixer. Then add the soaked ingredients, grind to a smooth batter adding required amount of water. Transfer to a wide vessel, add salt, mix well and allow to sit overnight to get fermented.

In the morning, you can use this batter for preparing soft and spongy dosas. Heat a tawa, pour a ladle of this batter, add few drops of oil and cover with a lid. Cook until u hear a SSS sound or until one side of the dosa turns golden brown in color.  Now, take out the dosa from the tawa. You don't have to cook the other side as we are cooking this keeping covered.  Just make sure you keep the flame on medium throughout the process. These dosas are crispy outside and super soft inside. Yumm!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Appalam Kuzhambu - Papad Curry

Appalam kuzhambu is a simple recipe prepared with appalam/papad in tamarind gravy. It is very easy and quick to prepare. We can prepare this kuzhambu when we do not have vegetables at home. The process is almost same as we prepare VathaKuzhambu.





Ingredients

Tamarind - small gooseberry size, soaked and extracted
Sambar powder - 1 tbsp
Ulundhu Appalam - 2 or 3
Jaggery - 1 tsp
Salt, hing, turmeric powder as per taste

For Seasoning

Gingelly oil - 2 tsp
Mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, channa dal, curry leaves and red chilli - as per preference

Method



  • Heat oil in pan, add mustard seeds and when the mustard seeds starts to splutter, add channa dal, fenugreek seeds, curry leaves, broken red chilli and fry till dal turns golden brown color. To this add broken ulundhu appalam and fry for a minute.
  • Then add the tamarind extract, sambar powder, hing and salt and allow the mixture to boil till the raw smell of sambar powder goes off completely.  Add jaggery and mix well.
  • If the kuzhambu is very dilute in consistency, we can mix 1 teaspoon of rice flour with water and add this to the kuzhambu to make it thicker. Appala kuzhambu is ready, enjoy with hot steaming rice and potato poriyal. 

  • Note - You can also use the readymade vathakuzhambu powder instead of sambar powder.
    Also, you can use either fried papads or the unfried ones. If using unfried ones, you have to add them while doing the seasoning and saute for couple of minutes. If using fried papads, just add them while adding the jaggery.