28.5.09

Curried Pasta




Curried Pasta:

Indianized Pasta dish. Spicy Pasta. Curry Flavoured Pasta.

I pretty much Indianize anything that I like! I can't really help it, I love spicy food! Pasta is one of favourite food, although I make it in a usual way...today I was really playing in my kitchen!! Curry powder, Garlic, Thyme and Tomatoes really gave lots of flavour to this dish, I am glad that I fused!! Its easy to fix meal, hope you guys will like it!!

Ingredients:

Pasta 1 cup
Salt to taste
Thyme 2-4 teaspoons (fresh leaves)
Garam Masala powder 1/4 spoon
Chili Powder 1/2 spoon
Coriander seeds powder 1/2 spoon
Cumin seeds powder 1/2 spoon
Garlic 5-7 cloves chopped & minced
Tomato Sauce 1 cup
Curry leaves 2 twigs
Oil few spoons.

Method:

Cook pasta as per the directions and set aside.

In a wide wok, heat oil. Add curry leaves and garlic. Fry for about 2 minutes or until fragrant.

Now stir-in tomato sauce. Cover and cook for few minutes.

When oil shows up on top, add salt and all the spice powders.

Stir-in cooked pasta and thyme. Cook over high heat, without lid. Maybe till the sauce is absorbed.

Serve warm, garnish with cheese!!!

17.5.09

Falafel



Falafel:

Middle East Falafel recipe. Middle East Fried Chickpea Fritters. Middle East form of Indian Vada!!

One my friend's friend is doing her Ph.D(in International Studies)at The University of Mississippi. The interesting subject she chose was 'Studying the similarities between all the Southern Food'. I mean...below the equator(a rough scale)to see the similarities through food!

I generally see some commonalities between every culture, every ethnic group in fact...what can I say 'Psychic Unity of Mankind'!! Well...I could relate Mississippi pan-fried catfish with my own authentic South Indian preparations and Kentucky fried chicken with Indian chicken 65(the butter milk marination, fried in peanut oil...etc)!! Same goes for bread...universally every culture has its own bread!! Every meals has a staple from carb' and protein! Even in deep thick Africa...they tend to eat more carb' (from corn), like rest of us do with rice, wheat etc.

Anyway, coming to the point...when I tried this 'Falafel', for the first time. I felt I like...what a wonderful form of Middle East Vada!! After seeing my friend Sufian's culinary skills(who is from Lebanon)...I learnt so much about their culture! Interestingly we do have lots of commonalities to cherish!!

Ingredients:

Chickpeas/garbanzos 1 cup (soaked and drained)
Onion 1 large finely chopped
Garlic 2 cloves crushed
Parsley 1 fistful finely chopped
Cilantro few chopped
Salt
Pepper
Cumin powder (optional)
Sesame powder 1 spoon
Oil for deep frying.

Method:

Grind the chickpeas coarsely and set aside.

Combine all the ingredients together, except oil.

Heat oil in a frying pan. Make small roundels out of the batter and deep fry them till golden to reddish brown.

Serve warm as an appetizer.

13.5.09

Mithai Mela - Special Round Up

Halwa Candies

Jack Fruit Payasam

Wheat Halwa

Makkan Peda

Boodhi

Baasandhi

Nuts Halwa

Walnut Halwa

Nuts Kheer

Milk Kowa

Sugar Cane Pongal

Black Gram Kali

Fruit Halwa

Almond Halwa


Mithai Mela - Special Round-Up:



These recipes are going to Srivalli's Mithai Mela Event!!!

15 Minutes Cooking

Masala Pongal


Milagu Pongal


Gothumai Kitchedi

When it comes to solo cooking, we'll always end up making a quick crock pot meal or a stir-fry for an accompainment! Generally such menu will be simple and easy to flip in minutes. Most of my dinner menus are all cooked under 15 minutes!! So here, I have listed some of my easy cooking recipes. Hope you all will enjoy it.



These recipes are going to Mahimaa's 15 minutes Cooking!!!

Water Melon Sorbet



Water Melon Sorbet:

Water Melon Sarbeth. Tarpoosani Sharbeth.

When I was a kid, we had 2-3 water melon vines in our garden. Each vine produces just one, but big, big, very big melon! The stumpy vine always spread on the ground to support their extraoridinary large fruit. It was fun getting up early morning and take a look at the fruit(how big it has grown today)!!! Nostalgic childhood memories.

Water Valley, Mississippi is the Water Melon Capital of the World!! This little town's name comes from the Melons they produce, actually. Water Valley supplies water melon, through out US. They have a Water Melon festival carnival,every year.

Tips: For more sweeter Water melons, always buy the eliptical ones!

This recipe goes to Maheshwari from www.publishtoday.blogspot.com

Event Hosted by Ashwini from Spicy Cuisine

Ingredients:

Water melon chunks 1-2 cups(deseed)
Sugar 1/4 cup
Mint to garnish.

Method:

Make a sugar syrup. Set aside till it cools down to room temperature.

Make a puree out of melon. Now mix this puree with syrup. Freeze them for 2 hours.

Blend them quickly just before serving.

12.5.09

Drumstick Greens Usili



Murungai Keerai Usili:

Moringa Keerai Poriyal. Murungai Keerai Masala Poriyal. Moringa ilai thoran(Tamil Nadu Style)

Moringha oleifera is the Botanical name of this tree. We call this as 'Murungai Keerai' in Tamil. The leaves are rich in iron and potassium. Rich source of dietary fibre. It is an aphrodisiac plus stimulant. It has good content of Vitamin A...as in folks words 'good for eye sight'! It is also considered as nerve tonic in many places(I have no clue about it). Leaves are diuretic in nature.

This recipe goes to Sowmya's Cooking with Greens Event!

Ingredients:
Drumstick Greens 1 large bowl
Mustard seeds 1/2 spoon
Cumin seeds 1/2 spoon
Chana dal 1/2 spoon
Urad dal 1/2 spoon
Curry leaves few
Green chilies 3 finely chopped
Dry red chilies 6
Chana dal 1 cup(soaked in water for 20 minutes)
Ginger-garlic paste 1 spoon
Fennel seeds 3 spoons
Salt(to grind with dal)
Salt for beans
Turmeric 1 pinch
Curry leaves few(to grind)
Oil 2 cups

Method:

In a blender dry grind fennel seeds, salt, dry chilies and curry leaves. Set them aside.

Wet grind chana dal bit coarsely and set aside.

In a pan, heat oil. Add mustard, cumin, curry leaves, chana and urad dal. Let them pop and splutter well.

To this add green chilies and cleaned drumstick greens. Fry well. Add salt and 1 pinch of turmeric powder. Sprinkle little water over this. Cover and cook.

When it is 3/4th done, add chana (wet-ground paste) and stir-fry. Let the dal-paste get well coated with the greens.Toss to all sides..until dal gets fried and cooked.

Run few spoons of oil now, if needed. The dal should not be wet or undercooked anymore. It should be sort of crispy and fragrant now.

Serve warm to go with plain steamed rice.

7.5.09

Ambur - Vaniyambadi style Mutton Biriyani



Vaniyambadi Mutton Biriyani:

India's finest cuisine developed after Mughal rule(14-16th Century), they took basic Indian cooking to art level! Since Mughal empire was widely spread, one could see biriyani recipe where they had strong foothold. Even now...several 100s of years after...local and outside influences fused together to create a unique style. To name a few Kashmiri biryani, Calcutta biriyani, Hyderabad biriyani etc.

Regional spcialites Tamil Nadu Biriyani: Nawaab a small time ruler of Mughal empire, introduced biriyani, kebab...to south Indians. The local influence could be...they tweaked the recipe with strong South Indian chilies and changed the rice from long grain to short grain. Tamil Nadu biriyani became famous after certain specific restaurants/hotels...which are all a centuary old!! To name a few, like Arcot Star biriyani, Vellore Jyothi biriyani, Ambur Ahmedhiya biriyani and Vaniyambaadi Khaja biriyani. Again when it comes to side dish...always I see is raita, its only in these regions its 'brinjal/eggplants curry' is served as side dish. Again there is a slight difference from town to town. Arcot Serwa and Vellore Serwa.

Ingredients:

Cloves 3
Cinnamon 2
Cardamon pods 3
Bay leaves 2
Maratti mokku 2
Star anise 1
Ghee 1 cup
Mutton/goat's meat 1/2 kilo
Short grained rice 2 cups(seeraga samba)
Green chilies 6 slitted
Onion 1 made into puree
Garlic 6 cloves made into paste
Ginger 2" size peeled and made into paste
Mint leaves 1 fistfull
Coriander leaves alone few
Lemon juice from 1 fruit
Curd 1 cup
Salt

Note: There is no tomato in this recipe, in case if you like....just add 1 small size tomato.

Method:

In a bowl, marinate meat with ginger-garlic, salt, lemon juice and curd. Let it stand for at least half an hour.

In a crock pot, heat ghee. Add cloves, cinnamon, crushed cardamon pods, maratti mokku, bay leaves, star anise and green chilies. Fry them till chilies crack and try to turn opaque.

Now add onion puree to this and fry them really well, until its pungent smell is gone. Then add mint and coriander leaves. Fry them till the leaves wilt.

Add meat and fry real good. Cover and cook till tender and nice.

Now add rice and saute it for few minutes and add 1:1.5 ratio water. Here for 2 cups of water add 3 cups of water. Add enough salt again for the rice. Slow cook them.

Once it is done. Serve them in clean banana leaf with brinjal/eggplant serva.

5.5.09

Carrot Halwa





Gajjar Ka Halwa:(Marwadi Style)

Gajjar Ka Zarda. Carrot Halwa(version 2). 'Shree Mittai' Style Gajjar Ka Halwa.

Myself and our family friend Manoj Malaani are big fan of 'Shree Mittai' sweets, at Egmore-Chennai. Especially we are crazy for their 'Gajjar ka Halwa' made in such a way, looks so glossy, melt in mouth, ghee fried, saffron infused...they actually slice the carrots' instead of grating!! It was something grand than a home made version!!

This recipe goes to Sanghi's Food Event:



Ingredients:

Caarots 1/2 kilo
Kowa(Milk gova) non-sweetened 2 cups(substitute - Milk powder)
Half n half(tetra pack milk) 2 cups
Whole milk 2 cups
Condensed milk 1/4 cup
Sugar 1 cup
Saffron 2-4 pinch
Ghee / Clarified butter 1 cup.

Method:

Trim the ends of carrot and grate them. Set aside.

Heat a wide, deep vessel. Add sugar + 1/2 cup of water. Bring them to syrupy consistency. (when you drop a syrup in a water filled cup...the syrup should form like a pearl and settle at the bottom of the cup.)

Stir-in grated carrot. Cover and cook. Maybe till it absorbs all the sugar syrup.

Meanwhile wet-grind saffron using mortar and pestle. Add few spoons of milk to grind it. Set aside.

Add whole milk, half and half and condensed milk. Cook wihtout cover. Stir-constantly. Add ghee when ever you feel like. This may really take long time. Once halwa consistency is achieved, remove from heat and serve hot or cold with a scoop of vanila ice cream.

3.5.09

Eggplant Chutney




Brinjal Chutney:

Eggplant Dip, Baingan Chutney.

I like North Indian style 'Baingan ka Bhurta' so much, except the part of...skinning the eggplants!! I feel that violet colored skin is more appetizing than the pulp itself!! Moreover all the essential vitamins and minerals lie close to the skin or on the skin. Skin is the natural barrier against the nutrient loss!! So why to peel them? Here...I tweaked the same recipe into my favourite South Indian version 'Chutney'...how about that!!

Ingredients:

Eggplant 1 large
Green chilies 3
Onion 1 small bulb
Garlic 3 cloves
Ginger 1"
Tomato 1 large
Salt
Tamarind paste 1/4 spoon
Sesame oil few spoons.

For Tempering:

Mustard seeds 1/4 spoon
Cumin seeds 1/4 spoon
Asafoetida 1/2 spoon
Chana dal 1 spoon
Urad dal 1 spoon
Curry leaves few
Sesame oil few spoons.

Method:

Smear oil all over the eggplant and bake or preferably broil them. Then, please retain the skin!! Slightly mash them, set aside.

Now, in a wide pan, heat oil. add chilies, garlic, ginger, onions, tomatoes and eggplants.

Fry for few minutes and puree coarsely in a blender.

In a separate pan, heat oil...add the tempering spices one by one and wait till they pop and splutter. Now run this seasoning over the chutney made.

Enjoy as a dip or an accompaniment for pongal, pulav or birinji rice.