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16.5.14

Mung Dhall Kadhi - What To Cook??



Pachai Payiru Mor Curry:

Why would someone want a funny story behind the recipes? Its very simple, storytelling at root...began with food! Remember Mommy's stories that fed you extra lump?! Awakening memoirs always percolate underneath food related stories. Life is all about food and celebrations. Many adults, enthusiastically recall their past' often revolving around experience of taste buds!

Deep down truth about 'my food blog' is like meeting a new unknown friend at a coffee shop! After dinning together and sharing thoughts, the actual bonding happens! Since now its the world of anonymity and constant phobia...maybe the 'food blog' touched the part of my soul! And mere blog-hopping satisfies the desire:)

Ingredients:

Mung dhal/ lentils - soaked overnight
Yogurts 4 cups
Salt
Turmeric powder 1/4 spoon
Asafoetida 1/4 spoon
Oil few spoons.

Wet Grind these to a Thick Paste:

Pepper 1-2 spoons
Green chilies 5
Thoor dal 1 cup - soaked
Tomato 1
Ginger 3-4 inch size. peeled.
Garlic 4 -5 cloves

For Tempering:

Mustard seeds 1/2 spoon
Cumin seeds 1/4 spoon
Urad dal 1/4 spoon
Asafoetida 1/4 spoon
Green chilies 3
Curry leaves few
Oil few spoons
Oil for shallow frying.

Method:

Cook mung dal in pressure cooker and set aside.

Heat oil, in a wok, add wet ground paste to it. Fry them till the raw odor is gone.

Further add asafoetida, salt, turmeric and cooked lentils/mung. Mix them well. Then add yogurts and bring it to boil.

In a separate pan, heat oil. Add mustard, cumin, asafoetida, chilies, pepper and curry leaves. Fry for a while...till they pop and splutter. Run this seasoning over the gravy made above.

Serve warm along with plain steamed rice.

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Paruppu Urundai Kurma - Real Comfort, Real Good!





Steamed Lentil's Balls In Spciy Korma:

Ingredients:


For Paruppu Urundai:

Thoor Dal(soaked in water for 20 minutes)
Salt
Ginger 2" peeled and grated
Garlic 5-6 cloves chopped
Dry red chilies 6-8
Salt
Fennel seeds 2 spoons
Curry leaves few
Cilantro.

For Kurma/Korma:

Fresh coconut milk 1 cup
Poppy seeds paste 1 teaspoon
Green chilies 3 slitted
Onion 1 small - grated
Onion 1 small sliced
Ginger-garlic paste 1 teaspoon
Tomato 1 crushed
Tomato 1 chopped
Salt
Turmeric 1/4 spoon
Chili powder 1 spoon
Cinnamon 1 stick
Cloves 3
Fennel seeds 2 teaspoons
Cardamom 1 crushed
Bay leaf 1
Curry leaves few
Mint leaves few
Cilantro leaves few
Ghee / butter 1 table spoon.

Method:

Wet-grind the first set of ingredients ( for urundai) and shape them into small ping pong size balls. Now, steam cook them for 10 minutes and set aside.

In a wide crock pot, heat ghee. Add the tempering spices. Followed by chilies, onions sliced + grated and ginger-garlic paste. Fry real good until fragrant.

Now add tomatoes too, fry real good until it turns pulpy.

Further add salt, turmeric and chili powder. Followed by 2 cups of water. Cover and cook over low-medium heat. Once the curry thickens, add poppy seeds paste and coconut milk. Bring this to boil, now add the steamed lentils balls one by one, without crowding. Cover and cook over low-medium heat, briefly.

Then, remove from heat and allow an hour of resting time...so that the curry is well-imbibed into the lentils-balls.

Serve to go with pilaf or soft rotis.

Vazhaikai-Karamani Kuzhambu - Country Style



Green Plantain n Kidney Beans Curry:

Other Names: Raw green plantain and kidney beans in tamarind based curry. Aratikaya Pulusu. Vazhaikai-karamani puli kuzhambu.

Ingredients:

Green plantain 1 diced / sliced
Kidney Beans - Seeds 1 cup(soaked overnight)
Pearl Onions chopped 1 cup
Garlic 5-7 cloves - crushed
Tomato 1 small - chopped
Salt
Turmeric
Chili powder
Jaggery/brown sugar 1 spoon
Coconut milk 1 small cup
Sesame oil 1 table spoon
Thalippu vadagam
Mustard seeds 1/4 spoon
Cumin seeds 1/4 spoon
Fenugreek seeds 1 pinch
Asafoetida 1 pinch
Dry chili 1 minced
Curry leaves few.

Method:

Pressure cook kidney-beans, and set aside. Do not discard the water.

In a wide iron wok, heat about 1/2 table spoon of oil.

Add the garlic, onions and keep frying. Now add tomatoes, cover and cook briefly.

Now add salt, turmeric, chili and jaggery. Followed by vegetables...stir-fry briefly. Add cooked beans along with its water. Continue cooking over low to medium heat with lid. Once the curry thickens, add coconut milk and bring this to boil.

In a separate pan, heat oil and add all the tempering spices, wait till they pop and splutter...now run the same over the curry prepared. Yum, right.

Serve warm with plain steamed rice, enjoy:)

15.5.11

Okra Masala - Taste of South India


Vendaikai Masala:

Other Names: Bhindi Masala - Tamil Nadu Style. Bhindi Subzi. Lady's Finger Fry. Vendaikai Varuval. Bendakaya Kura.

Ingredients:

Okra/lady's finger - 1 pound
Green chilies 3 sliced
Red onion 1 large sliced
Ginger 1" grated
Garlic 2 pods minced
Tomato 1 small - crushed
Salt
Turmeric 1/4 spoon
Chili powder 1 spoon
Sesame oil few spoons
Thalippu Vadagam - 1 spoon
Mustard seeds 1/4 spoon
Cumin seeds 1/4 spoon
Asafoetida 1 pinch
Curry leaves few.

Method:

Trim the ends and chop the veggie into 1-2" size bits.

In a wide wok, heat oil and the spices, followed by chilies, ginger-garlic, onions and tomatoes...fry real good till aromatic.

Now, add salt, turmeric and chili powder. Stir-in okras and stir-fry over high heat, till the texture is crisp without slime!

Serve warm as a side dish.

13.5.11

Soft Roti - Imitating Mom's Style:)





Hoooray Blogger Is Back:) You know what? I realized that, life really sucks without blogging:( When blogger was taken down for maintenance and debugging or something...I kind of went nuts!! First of all...I was looking out for a way to reach my fellow blog friends...yes, we all shared the same sentiments! Many expressed their regrets, some were really pissed-off and definitely we were all looking so dull without being able to post!Oops looks like we are all bit addicted to it! Anyhooo, now that it is back to normal, me too resumed back with same energy:) However, it has come to my notice that, my 12th May 2011 Post about 'Vegetables Tomato Soup' got disappeared!! And so does the comments:( I am terrible sorry for missing all your lovely words, friends:(
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Soft Roti:

Well, imitating someone's style is the last thing I want to do in my life! But, right now there is absolutely no lajja (shame)to adapt n copy Mom's style of culinary habits! Even though I spend awful lot of time in the kitchen n buffing my knowledge about recipes and techniques...you see, I couldn't be able to make the way Mommy did:(

I am simply amazed at her culinary skills. Even the simple recipe gets a lot of attention, the uniformity, consistency and that flawless completion! The things that went without notice and appreciation is now hitting back on me:( I am truly impressed when she intends to make chappathis / rotis. Trust me, she doesn't use even a pinch of dusting flour for rolling them! However, all the rotis at the end will be in geometrically perfect. If she aims at 8" round or if 6" triangle, every single piece will be done in a similar fashion!!! Whereas, me??? I am having hard time making one single chappathi with a perfect shape! I always end up having either Australia or Antarctica or Africa for my dinner...I meant the shapes of my rotis:(

Ingredients and Method:

Refined or fortified flour, salt as per taste, warm water and few teaspoons of ghee.

First warm the ghee and sprinkle over the flour. Mix well, so that the flour crumbles. Now add salt and pour warm water, little by little and knead through. Give lot of pressure while kneading, I guess this ensures softness. Well, bring this dough up to smooth-fissure less finish.

Now leave this set-up in the refrigerator for couple of hours.

Then divide them into equal parts and roll them down, fold two or three times...smear oil and dust flour, if necessary and roll them uniformly again. Repeat the same for all the remaining dough.

Now heat a skillet and toast the flat bread till lightly brown on both the sides.

Enjoy with an accompaniments of curries, korma or masala.

12.5.11

Mixed Veggie Tomato Soup - Hearty Concoction:)



Mixed Vegetables in Tomato Based Soup:

Most of my posts of last year's was all about 'slow-cooking meals' and 'rich desserts'! I was cooking, cooking and cooking...all non-stop meals with extra care! What I liked about it...is yet another question! One fine day, I realized that I've been spending awful lot of time in cooking than actually eating. How ironical, right! That's when I decided to try 'Jiffy Cooking' league this year:) I would say...rather not a bad idea at all. It freed me from burdening myself with tedious slow-cooking episode. On the contrary...I could whip a salad and call it a d-a-y! Yeah, blame it on the 'mode' :) Well, things at least don't crop up and fright me anymore...I can handle even a dozen of my party freak friends!

Ingredients:

Mixed Vegetables (fresh)
Mixed legumes (fresh)
Tomato based spaghetti sauce 1 can
Crushed tomatoes 1 can
Garlic-chili based seasoning few teaspoons
Basil powder /fresh - as per taste
Parsley powder / fresh - as per taste
Salt - as per taste
Extra virgin olive oil 1/2 tablespoon.


Vegetables:
Carrot, beans, broccoli, baby corn, squash, cabbage etc
Legumes: Lima beans, butter beans, green peas etc.

Method:

Heat oil in a crock pot, add the vegetables and saute briefly. Further add the crushed tomatoes and followed by spaghetti sauce. Cover and cook till tender.

Later add the seasoning and herbs. Continue cooking till oil separates.

Serve warm:)

11.5.11

Vegetable Kothu Parotta - Multiple Choice Food!




Vegetarian Kothu Barotta:

Well, am not here to complain, but you see...If given choice, many want This, That and the Other. Oh yeah, I agree we all love some choices, (take a stroll to the nearby Super store, am positive that you will be bewildered by the numerous options at every section)!Anyhow...when it comes to multi-multiple choices, oh man, its pretty annoying!!

Host: What would you prefer Mam, coffee or orange juice.
Me: Juice, please.
Host: We have three brands...which one do you like?
Me: Muttering something...
Host: Do you like some ice for your beverage?
Me: Yes, please...
Host: Small, Medium, Tall - which glass is your preference?
Me: Just anything is fine...please 'Surprise Me':)

On the other day, myself and my significant other, were on a road trip. I was pretty hungry and I decided to stop by at any nearby eat area! Yes, I was terribly hungry and driving for straight 5-7 hours...I really didn't care whether its a junk food or gas-station food! However, as usual...he was using his GPS and his complex algorithms to analyze the best restaurant in the next 12 miles! He kept passing all the good places...complaining that their food would be greasy, they serve too much carbohydrate over there, here it is virtually no fiber in their diet, I don't like that place...as the waitresses are bit reluctant, this place is very creepy and the other one' has no good parking lot etc. There was a total disagreement where to stop and eventually battle broke. At the end I was pretty mad, angry and hungry at the same time. At last...we stopped at Cracker Barrel Country Restaurant for lunch! Which was overwhelmingly crowded...We were taken care of...like after 20 minutes of patient waiting:)

Anyhoo, looks like I never learned my lesson!! Coming onto today's recipe...Before' I intended to cook our weekend meals, I foolishly asked 'What would he prefer for dinner?' First we decided on Roti and Egg Masala. Later, he changed that into Parotta and Egg Korma. We argued a bit at this point and changed that into vegetable korma and egg-based Kothu parotta. The whole idea of peaceful dinner is completely moot by this time! Finally I decided Veg-egg-kothu parotta and used some kind of assertiveness to which sometimes, people submit! Voila...that's how after 2 painful hours of discussing on the menu, I prepared this! Yeah, some kind of dinner, right!! Well, otherwise my mantra is 'surprise'...no more choice for you:):)

How to make the barottas?

Barottas

Ingredients:

Soft cold barottas 5-7(made into bite size pieces)
Mixed Vegetables 2-3 cups
Green chilies 3 finely chopped
Onion 2 finely chopped
Ginger-garlic paste 1 spoon
Salt
Turmeric powder 1/2 spoon
Chili powder 1 spoon
Garam masala powder 1/2 spoon
Coriander powder 1 spoon
Cumin seeds 1/2 spoon
Eggs 3 well beaten
Lemon juice few spoons
Oil 1 cup.

Method:

In a wide, non-stick wok, heat oil. Add cumin seeds, green chilies, ginger-garlic paste and onion. Fry them till aromatic.

Now add vegetables and stir-fry over high briefly.

Add eggs and scramble them completely. Further add salt, turmeric, coriander and garam masala powder to this.

Followed by chopped barotta, fry them till oil coats well. Run few spoons of lemon juice over this.

Garnish with cilantro leaves, serve steaming hot.

10.5.11

Dhall Makhani - Mood For Cooking!





Dal Makhani:

Once upon a time...when I was studying in New Delhi, they used to serve Dal Makhani in our hostel, quite often! Let me refresh your memory by saying 'Makhani' means buttery. Somehow, our cook completely misses the whole idea of adding it to the dish! He exactly knows how to ruin a particular dish...in his own way! My roomie(room mate) and I, used to pray sincerely...so that they wouldn't serve the dish forever! But, all our prayers went in vain!! Despite our miserable plea, Kamalesh (the cook) kept cooking it every week:( Thereby, constantly kept our weight on check!! That's why...I hated this dish for a long time. Since, most of my past bitter experiences are all better now (only in food context)...thought of experimenting this one too!! Rather not a bad idea at all! Yes, it turned out to be "The Best Dal Makhani" I ever tasted:) I am going to pat myself and indulge in little bit of more...does anyone care to join me?

Ingredients:

Whole Black lentils / karuppu muzhu ulundhu 2 tablespoon (I used split lentils, today)
Chana dal 1 table spoon
Red beans/ rajma 1 fistful
Green chilies 3 chopped
Ginger-garlic paste
Onion 1 large finely chopped
Tomato puree 1 cup
Fresh cream 1 cup
Salt
Turmeric 1/4 spoon
Chili powder 1 spoon
Coriander seeds powder (fresh) 1 spoon
Cumin seeds powder (fresh) 1 spoon
Garam masala powder 1/4 spoon
Cumin seeds 1/4 spoon
Asafoetida 1 pinch
Butter few spoons.

Method:

Soak all the three lentils together overnight. Then, throw away the water and wash the lentils several times. Now, pressure cook them till tender.

Mash the lentils coarsely using the back of the spatula.

In a wide wok, heat oil. Add cumin seeds and asafoetida. Wait till it sizzles. Then add chilies, ginger-garlic and fry real good, followed by onions. Fry till reddish brown.

Further add tomato puree, salt, turmeric and chili powders. Cover and cook briefly until oil separates. Now...stir-in cooked and mashed lentils to it. Cover and cook until oil separates.

Add garam maala powder, coriander and cumin seeds powder. Top with fresh cream and cilantro leaves.

Mix well, before serving. Serve warm to go with your rotis, chappathis, pulkahs.

9.5.11

Mutta Masala - Hot and Spicy!



Egg Masala:

Chettinad Style Egg Masala. Egg Chettinad. Muttai Masala Varuval. Mutta Varuthadhu.

Ingredients:

Eggs 4-6 boiled n peeled
Salt
Turmeric 1/4 spoon
Chili powder 1 spoon
Fresh tamarind 1 large pod
Sesame oil 1/2 tablespoon
Curry leaves few.

Spices Required:

Dry coconut 2 spoons
Coriander seeds 2 spoons
Fenugreek seeds 1/4 spoon
Poppy seeds 1 teaspoon
Dry red chilies 7-9
Cumin seeds 1 teaspoon
Peanuts 1 fistful

To Serve:

Steamed rice to go with.

Method:

Dry toast the spices and powder the same.

Slit the eggs twice but by still holding their shape.

Meanwhile, extract tamarind milk and set aside.

Heat up the griddle, add oil and tempering spices if needed. And followed by remaining powdered spices. Further add salt, turmeric, chili powder and tamarind milk. Cook over low-medium heat, without lid.

When oil separates, add the eggs and cook briefly.

Serve warm to go with your steamed rice. Enjoy your meal:)