Showing newest 12 of 16 posts from February 2010. Show older posts
Showing newest 12 of 16 posts from February 2010. Show older posts


Kosamalli - Salem Dosai Kadai Special Side Dish


Side Dish for Idly and Dosa. Salem Dosai Kadai Special Side Dish - Kosamalli.

I freaked out a little at these small eat areas around Coimbatore and Salem cities. To discover the joy of eating at lollu(small, shady, nasty looking, not-so clean)' should have special trait 'cravings' or maybe let me call it 'an acquired taste' (sounds bit decent, huh)! When it comes to taste, its very hard to explain, you got to experience it. Kosamalli is served to go with your dosa and idlies at Salem Dosai Shops (Yes, Shops and that is how they define their hotels). I almost saw more than 50 different varieties of dosas and 50 different podis to accompany it with and the curry, gravy list is so endless!!! Since I have been only twice to these places...did't try everything, tomato dosa and kosamalli I ordered were so exquisite(its been more than 5 years, the taste still lingers in my mind).


Eggplant 1 large
Potatoes 2 medium
Green chilies 6 slitted
Ginger 2" grated
Purple onion finely chopped
Country tomatoes 4 chopped
Turmeric (optional) I didnt use them
Tamarind paste 1/4 spoon
Cilantro to garnish
Cumin seeds few
Oil few spoons.


Boil the potatoes and mash them. Broil and bake the eggplants and mash them as well. Set aside.

In a wide wok, hea toil. Add cumin seed followed by chilies, ginger and onion. Fry real good.

Add tomatoes and mashed potatoes plus eggplant. Now add 4 cups of water and tamarind paste. Bring this to boil.

Garnish with cilantro leaves, enjoy wiht dosas and idlies.


Marina Beach Special - Thenga Maanga Pattani Sundal

Beach Sundal:

I feel awful that I didnt fall in love:( Never got a chance to take that romanantic(eeeewh)beach walk...eating that dho' rupiah sundal...talking sweet nothing(stupid)... master planning to elope away...are the kind of moments' completely missing in my life:(

So, whenever my friends talk about their pre-marriage love affairs, I will be ready to listen to their story, but fail to catch up the actual romance'. I always end up asking some logical but lame questions and completely miss the fun of L-O-V-E; which will eventually make my buddies very angry at me!!!

Anyhow, so most of my Chennai friends, did have boy friends or friends who are boys or more than a friend & less than a lover kind of relationships(whatever, it doesnt matter now). They used to talk with great zeal, how they enjoyed talking hours together in that dirty beach, in an extremely crowded sandy land,...I dunno whats big romance in that!!!

Few a times, roamed with my friends (girls ofcourse) to marina beach...hmmm, I have to admit, it was really fun.:) I really didnt care much about the filth filled sundal or oily bajji...gosh they tasted heaven. With so many people passing by catch up that energy. I agree, Chennai may be a den of mosquitos, polluted to charr black, rough on innocent travelers...but sure the city and the beach has its own energy!

And I did like the sundal very much, guess that salty air makes it much more incredible. Aaah, what the heck if miss that boy friend stuff...I do know how to treat myself with food, he he:):)


Dry yellow peas 1 cup
Fresh coconut - sliced
Raw green mango - sliced
Cilantro - chopped
Curry leaves
Green chilies
Turmeric 1 pinch
Mustard seeds
Cumin seeds
Oil few spoon.


Soak the peas overnight and cook them the next day, in a pressure cooker...with enough salt.

In a wide wok, heat oil. Add the tempering items and followed by peas. Once the peas are done and no moisture left in the wok, remove from heat.

Now garnish with cilantro, coconut and mangoes. Wow, that is done...enjoy with your companion, people say they taste better:):)


Tandoored Cauliflowers - Impressing my Veg-Partner:)

Tandoori Cauliflower:

One thing that makes me very uncomfortable is to end up having vegetarian roomates, eggetarian friends and strict vegan family members around!!! Being a true carnivore' I consider myself, that I can manage decent cooking with flesh and the same time, feel so awful that none can be enjoyed(no appreciation as well) by my beloved buddies.:( So, there is always something getting stir-fried on the side G-R-E-E-N, in my kitchen! But, sincerely I do want to present that delicate taste by carefully replacing meat alternate items like mushrooms, broccoli and cauliflowers. This is one such lovely attempt...


Cauliflower 1 whole head - cut into small florets.

Do not attempt to use full flower/big florets...they didnt taste nice for me.

Spices to be Toasted & Powdered:

Coriander seeds
Tymol seeds

Use only a pinch of above spice blend.

Other Ingredients:

Black Salt
Regular Salt
Chili powder
Kashminri chili powder
Red food color
Lemon juice
Yogurts (hung)
Ginger-garlic paste
Onion paste
Mint paste
Few cubes of butter/ghee for basting
Chaat masala to garnish.

About 1-2 spoons of above ingredients (ratio? you must decide).


Mariante the flower with plain salt, lemon juice and chili powder for about a hour.

Then followed by all the above mentioned items, except ghee.

Maybe for couple of hours will do!

Now, smear them with ghee and grill them till tender on the inside and crisp on the outside.

If you prefer to do it in the oven, bake them for 30 minutes over 350 degrees and and broil them briefly for 2 minutes, often changing its postion!


Chettinad Style Vegetable Biriyani - Very Spicy

Spicy Chettinadu Vegetable Biriyani:

Spice-holics, listen up...this dish is certainly for you. I make vegetable biriyani very very rarely, just because they don't taste exactly like meat biriyanis. Something is always missing in there!!! The broth?! So I was practically attempting with quite different ways the each time. Finally came up with this idea of preparing my own vegetable broth using fresh vegetables. Bought the basic vegetables from the local market and meticulously prepared a spicy broth! Now re-created the same old biriyani with exciting chettinad touch of spices and simmered the whole thing to perfect meal.


Vegetable Broth:

Ginger 2"
Garli 2 cloves
Spanish onion 1
Coriander seeds
Cumin seeds
Bay leaves
Cilantro leaves
Butter 1 cube.

Now cook all the above using 4-6 cups of water, on low-medium heat for about 40 minutes. Once the vegetables are done and the broth should be reduced half of its original portion. Remove from heat, filter the same and store in an air-tight jar.

For Biriyani:


Cinnamon 1 stick
Cloves 5
Black cardamom 3
Green cardamom 3
Nutmeg 1 crushed
Birinji flower 1
Marati mokku 1
Green chilies 6 sliced
Onion 1 sliced
Toamtoes 2 chopped
Mint 1 fistful
Turmeric 1/2 spoon
Chili powder 1-2 spoons
Vegetables (potatoes, carrots, beans, peas, double beans)
Basmati rice 4 cups
Ghee 1 cup
Fried curry leaves to garnish.

Spices to be toasted and powdered:

Fennel seeds 2 spoons
Coriander seeds 2 spoons
Peppercorns 2 spoons
Cumin seeds 2 spoons
Dry red chilies 4-6
Poppy seeds 2 spoons
Dry coconut 6 spoons.

To be fried in oil and then wet-ground:

Onion 1 small
Ginger 2" grated
Garlic 6 cloves
Tomato 1
Green chili 1
Curry leaves few
Cilantro leaves few.


Marinate vegetables with enough salt, powdered spices, wet-ground spices and lemon juice.

In a wide vessel, heat ghee...throw in dry spices, followed by chilies and onions. Wait till they get golden color.

Then stir-in mint and tomatoes...cover and cook. Once they turn pulpy, add the masala covered vegetables. Do not cover, cook over medium heat.

Once the spices raw smell is gone and oil shows up on the top. Add turmeric and chili powders. Stir-in rice, cover and cook over least possible heat.

When the rice is done, remove from heat.


Ridge Gourd Masala with Shrimps - Very Ethnic!!!

Prawns - Redgegourd Masala:(Country Style)

Iral-Peerkankai Masala. Iral-Peerkankai Thokku. Iral Masala. Prawn Masala.

Nothing fancy today(as tho' it used to be everyday, huh?), okay okay usual simple food, alright. Well, the picture didnt turn out perfect(I know, as always)but you got to give me some credit for trying this recipe! I made this Iral Masala Thokku during my last vacation (Home-India). It sure makes a lot of difference to use fresh prawns than the frozen ones(and that too cooked!!). Anyhow...coming to ridgegourd, its been ages I have seen this vegetable, so when I was in India, just made use of all the possible native(?)vegetables. And pairing with shrimps is totally upto you,...I can never put any vegetable' in my mouth unless it looks or smells like fish/meat:( Too bad, spoiled to the core.

Vegetarian's Option

Just skip the shrimps part, thats all.


Shrimps 1/4 kilo
Ridge gourd 1 large chopped finely
Green chilies 3 chopped
Onion chopped 1 cup
Ginger 1" grated
Garlic 2 minced
Tomato 1 optional
Turmeric 1/4 spoon
Chili powder 1 spoon
Mustard seeds 1/2 spoon
Cumin seeds 1 spoon
Asafoetida 1 pinch(optional)
Curry leaves few
Sesame oil few spoons.


In a wide wok, heat oil. Add the spices and wait till they pop.

Followed by chilies, ginger, garlic, onion and tomato. Fry real good, add shrimps and fry briefly.

Add the chopped vegetables, salt, turmeric and chili powders. Cover and cook over low-medium heat...till they are done and tender.

Remove from heat and serve to go with your steamed rice or rotis. It can be treated a side dish as well.


Malabar Special Ramzaan Sweet Treat

Unnakayi. Unnakaye. Unnakaya. Pazham Nirachadhu. Stuffed Plantains. Vazhai Kai Appam?Vayaka Adda. Vayyakada. Kai ada. Kayeada.

Generally I do cook several dishes from my blogger friends, but I don't picture or post them. This is the first time, I am so impressed with my fellow blogger's work and tried her recipe the very same day. When she posted this recipe' under Ramadhaan special, I was so curious to try it immediately. That was quite exciting and totally a new dish for me:) But I was so skeptical to post the same because' mine didnt turn out very well...hmmm but its okay for the first time, right! Anyhow, comeon please take a look, at the original version, here.


Semi ripe plantains (not raw, not got it?)
Egg with Sugar - scrambled
Cashewnuts and raisins - ghee fried.
Ghee for deep frying.


Steam the palntains, peel and core them. Now mash them coarsely.

Divide into equal parts, and flatten them...fill-in scrambled eggs plus nuts and raisins. Cover and bring them to elongated ball shapes. Repeat the same for allt he remaining stuff too.

Shallow or deep fry these in hot ghee. Yep, yummm:)


Mung Sprouts Korma

Sprouted Lentils Kurma:

Moong Sprouts Curry. Mung Sprouts Curry. Sprouted Mung Dhall Curry. Green Gram Sprouts Curry. Mulai Payaru Kuruma. Mulai Payir Kurma. Pachai Payiru Kuruma.


Sprouted Green gram lentils 1 cup
Grated coconut 1 cup
Coconut milk 1/2 cup
Green chilies 3
Onion 1 grated
Ginger-garlic paste 1 spoon
Tomato chunked out from 2-3
Turmeric powder 1/4 spoon
Chili powder 1 spoon
Coriander seeds 1/4 cup -toasted and powdered
Cilantro to garnish
Butter 1 cube
Cloves 3
Cinnamon 1
Bay leaf 1
Cardamom 3 crushed
Fennel seeds 1/2 spoon.


Melt butter, in a wide wok. Throw in the whole spices and green chilies. Wait to sputter.

Now add onion, ginger and garlic...fry till the raw odour leaves the pan. Followed by tomatoes.

Add sprouts, salt, turmeric, chili powder, coriander powder, grated coconut and coconut milk. Cover and cook over low-medium heat.

Once the gravy thickens and sprouts done, remove from heat.

Serve to go with your rotis, chappathis or rice.


Pasta Alfredo - Pasta it is!!!

Pasta Alfredo with Stir-fried Vegetables and Fried Shrimps on the side:

Cook Penne pasta as given in the box-directions.

Rinse and retain the shells. Mix with your favourite Alfredo's sauce, I like the one which has lots of garlic and mushrooms.:) Sprinkle a lot of Parmesan, as though you were waiting for me to suggest...duh!

Now for the side dish, if you're vegetarian...choose your favourite veggies. I picked broccoli and zucchini...not that I liked, but just had them in the fridge, lol.

Well, heat olive oil...add garlic powder?(yeah powder), salt and chili flakes(optional). Stir-fry vegetables briefly and set aside.

Here I come, Shrimps:) Okay, heat up the skillet, add olive oil. Put-in the garlic powder, chili flakes and shrimps...stir-fry for couple of minutes and add the tomato puree. cook over high heat...until the shrimps turn crisp and aromatic. Wow, its done.

Well, arrange them in a platter and treat yourself or others.


Eat Chicken Daily & Often!!!

Wok Chicken Fry:

There is nothing much to rant', the caption pretty much explains my love for chicken:)


Chicken 2-4 pieces
Turmeric 1/4 spoon
Garlic 2-4 cloves minced
Ginger 1" grated
Pepper powder to taste
Curry leaves few
Mustard seeds 1/4 spoon
Cumin 1/4 spoon
Sesame oil few spoons.


Cut and clean the chicken pieces, retain its skin and never de-bone...meat done with its own fat on and bone-in is easy to cook plus delicious:)

Heat oil, in a wok. Add the spices, wait till they pop and splutter.

Add meat, salt and turmeric. Cover and cook over low heat...minimum possible.

Keep turning the pieces in between, often. Ensure thorough cooking.

Once you are pleased with its aroma and in-depth cooking...add pepper powder and remove from heat.

Thats right, dig-in:)


Sesame & Cilantro Fritters

Til aur Kothamir Vadi:(Maharastrian Style)

Ellu-Kothamalli Vadai. Til ka Vade. Corinader leaves Vada.


Oil for deep frying
Chana dal/chick peas 1 cup
Black sesame seeds 1 fistful
Peanuts/cashew nuts 1 fistful
Cilantro 1 bunch chopped
Jaggery 1 spoon
Tamarind pulp 1-2 spoons
Onions finely chopped
Green chilies finely chopped
Curry leaves
Ginger 2" grated
Garlic paste 1/2 spoon
Dry red chili flakes
Fennel seeds - powdered 1 spoon
Fennel seeds 1/2 spoon


Soak lentils for about 20 minutes and coarsely grind them with sesame seeds and peanuts by adding very less water.

Now throw in all the spices and stuff mentioned...bring it to vadai consistency batter.

For a change, I steamed the fritters and then shallow fried it in oil!

You can heat oil in a shallow frying pan, shape them and shallow fry till crisp and nice, directly for more crispy vadas.

Serve warm to go with you tea.


Valentine's Day Special - Love Chemistry!!!


Let me admit to you all that I am not the right person to talk on a Valentine's day occasion! I still see 'love' has a hardwired 'gene' that got engraved in our molecular level!! The chemical compatibility of two people is so fascinating science to me. How hormones like oxytocin and vassopersin plays their given role in bonding, parenting and long-term commitment. Why there is rush of chemicals in 'romantic lovers' blood stream and its so interesting to know...dopamine acts as a endo-genous opium. Is there something called 'love potion' that we could engineer in the lab?(clearly it is possible in future). Genetics is behind all the marriages.

Courtship & Feeding Courtship feeding has been observed in many species of insects, birds and primates. In almost in all species, it is always the male who provides his female. Feeding' could be an important source of nutrition for females during egg formation. The presentation of food is sometimes nutritional significance and usually taken as an act of appeasement in humans.

Insects Males of many species provide the female, during courtship with a nuptial gift...usually consisting of a prey. Bee eaters (Marops apiaster) male delivers his female before and during egg-laying and in fact they tend to eat themselves smaller portions in order to provide larger ones for females. In honey bees, sterile males are the ones which collects the honey, while fertile male's only job is to fertilize the queen bee's eggs. Soon after the mating, the male dies here. In some species of insects, the female devours the male after successful mating. (Example: Praying Mantis).

Birds Courtship feeding is observed in many species of marine birds like gulls, terns and skuas. The male lures his female by holding food in his bill. For example in Least Tern (Sterna antillarum) courtship is described as “ the fish flight”. Where the male initiates by carrying a small fish and calling as he or two or many females, will join him eventually for high-flying. Upon reaching the ground male offers small fish to females. Courtship feeding is a significant part and it continues throughout the incubation period. In parrots (A. albifrous), the males feed females. During the display, male grasps the bill of female and food is regurgitated into her mouth.

Humans Although in humans, courtship feeding is not that simple. But no one can deny the fact that it is socially accepted norm that man has to pay the bill, when he takes his woman for a dinner date.


Milk a litre
Cardamom powder/Rose essence
Lemon juice.


Heat milk in a wide, heavy bottomed vessel. Squeeze fresh lemon juice in it. Continue boiling for couple of minutes...once the milk solids separate, run them throw a sieve and retain the solids.

Now knead them into soft tiny balls.

Prepare a light sugar syrup and boil the rasgollas in it. Once they get cooked and have a huge increase in their volume...remove from heat.

Cover and chill. Serve chilled as a dessert.:)


Puzhungal Arisi Oma Kanji - Poor Man's Meal

Broken Par-boiled Rice Kanji:

Conjee – is a staple comfort food in India, which has a long history. In a tropical climate like south India, semi-solid liquid food is the most preferred form of diet among rural folks. There are various versions of congee prepared both cold and warm, using wide range of grains. The basic conjee is prepared using rice, which is boiled in many times its weight of water for a long time until the rice breaks down and becomes a fairly viscous white porridge. Seeds like tymol and cumins are added as flavoring agents. It is served warm along with stir-fried vegetables or grilled fish or with just plain sliced onions and green chilies.

However the best kanji is usually made with 'noi arisi' ( broken parboiled rice)...when rice is manually hulled, it results in wastage (more broken rice grains). In ancient culture, they don't waste anything because of poverty. Conjee requires very less rice than plain boiled rice to feed the same number of people. That is why, it is still considered as a poor man’s meal in India. And often associated with 'famine food' .