Showing newest posts with label Health Food. Show older posts
Showing newest posts with label Health Food. Show older posts

7.5.11

Mutton-Spring Onions Soup - Natural Remedy For Flu!





Meat-Green Onions Soup:

Other Names: Goat's meat and Spring onions Soup. Iraichi-Vengaya thaal Soup.

Ingredients:

Meat with bones 1/4 kilo
Spring onions 1 large bunch
Red onions 1 medium sliced
Ginger 1" grated
Garlic 2 cloves minced (use 7-10 pods, if you like)
Soy sauce 1 tablespoon
White pepper powder 1-2 spoons
Oil few spoons.

Method:

Cook mutton till tender in a pressure cooker, set aside.

Heat oil in a wide vessel, add ginger-garlic and onions fry real good. Further add cooked meat along with its liquid.

Add enough salt, soy sauce, pepper powder. Allow this to boil well, finally add chopped spring onions and continue boiling briefly...maybe until the greens wilt.

Serve warm as a starter.

26.4.11

Navadhanya Dosa - An Insight Into Nine-Planets!






Nine Planets (Navgrahas / Navagragangal):

Sun (Surya/Suriyan) -Wheat (Geghu/Gothuma)
Moon (Chandra/Chandhiran) -Paddy(Chawal /Arisi)
Mars (Mangal /Chevvai) -Lentils (Toor/Thuvar dal)
Mercury (Budh/Bhudhan) -Green gram (Hara Moong/ Pachai Payaru)
Jupitor (Guru/Brihaspati) -Garbanzos (Chana/Kondai Kadalai)
Venus (Sukra/Sukiran) -Val Beans (White Rajma/Avari)
Saturn (Shani/Sani) -Black Sesame (Ellu/Til)

Two Satellite planets (Ubha Gragangal):

Rahu -Black gram (Ulundu/Urad)
Kethu -Horse gram (Kollu/ Uluva)

The very idea of seeing the planets position, stars, and other celestial bodies as living entities is a rich source of knowledge with myth entangled to it! It has been observed cross-culturally around the world with numerous citations. Almost every known old civilization has its own story to tell.

According to Prasna Marga (Astrological treatise) all the planets: Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus and Saturn; the Sun and the Moon; Rahu (Ascending lunar node) and Ketu (Descending lunar node) are all cosmic powers. Astrologists claim that zodiac sign influence the minds and life style of human beings.

Many believe that performing navagraha pujas and conducting homas (yakhna) will please the gods. It brings an instant gratification and an emotional well-being state. As most of the rituals are still centered around brotherhood, charity, sentiments, sharing and enjoyment. Should it be the way of life?! Well, I never fail to acknowledge the wisdom at unusual places!

In Hinduism, nine different cereals are used to worship each deity. Whereas, I used my culinary ability to bring this into one dish:)

Navadhaniya Adai:

Ingredients:

The Nine Cereals that I mentioned above, each about a fistful.
Salt to taste
Dry red chilies 3-5
Ginger 2" grated
Peppercorns 1 teaspoon
Cumin seeds 1 teaspoon
Curr leaves few
Sesame oil few spoons for making dosas.

Method:

Soak all the above mentioned cereals overnight. Wet-grind the same along with spices mentioned above. Add just enough salt and water.

Heat up the griddle and make thin crepes or thick pancakes, as you please. Cook both the sides, drizzle with few spoons of oil.

Serve warm with chutneys.

21.4.11

Karamani Sundal - Pre or Post Workout Snack!




Black Eye Beans Sundal:

I have been up to all healthy ways for whatever reason that I needed. Most of the days, people stay active and choose only healthy food from Monday through Friday, as soon as they see the calender hit Friday...many want to break the rules for some take-away meals! Other than that, often dream about lazying on the couch! In fact, being idle makes the muscles ache more than by mere work-out. So, the agenda here today is protein-packed black eye beans sundal. This is best suited for weightlifting workouts. The idea of chronicling every simple recipe is for some motivation! The best part about this kind of snack is that they only take approximately 20 minutes to prepare. Moreover, cooking for evening munch shouldn't be a chore...it is a perfect opportunity to relax, re-fuel, ponder and awaken your senses.

Ingredients:

Black eye beans 1 cup - soaked overnight
Salt
Turmeric 1 pinch
Green chilies 6 chopped
Ginger 2" chopped
Coconut chopped few teaspoons
Curry leaves few
Cilantro leaves few
Asafoetida 1/4 spoon
Peppercorns 4-6
Cumin seeds 1/2 spoon
Mustard seeds 1/2 spoon
Sesame oil few spoons.

Method:

Soak the legumes overnight in water. Boil the same in a pressure cooker...maybe add salt at this point.

Now, in a wide wok, heat oil. Add the tempering spices, followed cooked legumes along with its water. Cook over high heat...until dry without much moisture.

Serve warm as an evening snack.

18.4.11

Pesarattu / Green Gram Dosa - Recreating Perfection



Pachai payaru Dosai:

There should be at least one recipe for each one of us, that no matter how hard we try to replicate it, never able to master it, right? Somehow, the taste of first devoured dish still lingers on our mind! And even after a zillion painful experiments...we know that it is not even close to the original!! Well to me, I have bunch of such recipes...here is the one!

When I was studying at Hyderabad, a friend of mine Tulasi Ram, introduced me to this dish. That's right, I never heard or tasted 'Pesarattu' before! Was so skeptical to try the dish, with weird name (that was before I understood Telugu)! All I thought was...why this dosa is so green...what went wrong?? But the moment, I took a bite' of a thin, crisp, melt-in-mouth and practically like a 'see-through mirror' kind of dosa...just loved it.

Later I buffed my knowledge at my other friend's house...Kranti's Mom, who kept cooking all the goodness to us. Since, this dosa doesn't call for much carb' nor it requires any fermentation process, it quickly made an entry in my cook book. Yes, ever since I have been trying to perfect it!! No matter how hard I try the same, it just doesn't taste like the one I had for the first time:(

Note:
Well, 'Pesaru' means 'green' in Telugu. 'Pesaru Pappu' means 'Green Gram' (Hara Moong in Hindi and Pachai Payaru in Tamil). And hence the name 'Pesarattu', makes sense now:) And how I started liking the expressive language Telugu is yet another interesting story to come:)

Ingredients:

Green Gram - 1 cup
Rice 1 fistful
Green chilies 3
Ginger 2"
Salt
Oil for smearing and stuff.

Method:

Soak the lentils and rice together, overnight. Wet-grind the same with all the above mentioned ingredients.

Heat up a griddle, smear enough oil. Make a thin crepe as much as possible. Run few spoons of oil and cook both the sides. Once it turns golden brown, its done, remove from heat. Repeat the same for the remaining batter.

It would be a fulfilling tiffin, perfect for weekend brunch.

6.4.11

Pearl Millet Pancake - India's Own Pancake




Kambu Inipu Adai:

Ingredients:

Pearl millet powder 1 cup
Banana 1
Jaggery 3/4 cup
Cardamom powder 1 spoon
Milk 1 tablespoon
Ghee/butter for smearing
Honey to garnish
Pistachios nuts few to garnish.

Method:

Mix the first 5 ingredients together and make a smooth batter.

Heat the skillet, add butter and pour about a tablespoon of batter. Cook both the sides. Once it is golden brown, remove from heat.

Garnish with honey and nuts, serve as a breakfast.

9.3.11

Paruppu Keerai Poriyal / Greens Subzi - Green Leafy Vegetables Stir-fry






Greens Thoran:

I am not sure, what kind of greens these are!!! Found them lying in International market, untouched by many! I confidently bagged them with care, and once again, Mom's recipe helped me to creative this delicacy!

Regarding wild/domesticated greens...wash them several times in running water and let the greens sit in water filled vessel for a while, this will facilitate the fine-sand to settle down. And if you are wondering 'why I am ranting so much about cleaning the greens?...Here is a shameful incident, when I was an amateur cook (not that I am a good one, now:) I simply rinsed the greens and went ahead with cooking, so ended up with disaster keerai poriyal, but unknowingly served them to my guests, no one said a word' everyone quietly finished their lunch! But when I tasted it, it was so horrible...felt so bad! From that incident onwards, am being very careful these days. And also, never buy greens during rainy season...it gives out a funky odor!

Note:

Hoooray, this is called 'Paruppu Keerai' in Tamil. Special Thanks goes to Sheena Babu for helping me out. I was kind of wondering...the leaves look so familiar but I couldn't recall the actual native name of this greens, at the time of posting! Thanks to blogging and my buddies, once again:)

Ingredients:

Greens - chopped along with tender stem to 1 inch size
Garlic 7 cloves chopped
Green chilies 3 chopped
Salt
Turmeric 1 pinch
Chana dal 2 spoons
Urad dal 2 spoon
Mustard seeds 1/2 spoon
Cumin seeds 1/4 spoon
Peppercorns 2
Asafoetida 1 pinch
Oil few spoons
Grated coconut 2 spoons(I used dessicated one, here)

Method:

Wash and clean the greens several times to get rid of any sand particles. Hold them in a colander, till cooking.

Heat oil in a wok. Add the tempering spices, and wait till they turn reddish brown.

Now add greens, salt and turmeric...cover and cook briefly. Once the leaves wilt, remove the lid and stir-fry over high heat.

Garnish with grated coconuts, serve warm to go with South Indian meals.

8.3.11

Karuppu Ulundhu Vadai / Kala Urid Dhal Vada





Whole Black Lentils Fritters:

Other Names: Black Gram Fritters, Kala Urid Dhal Vada. Muzhu Ulundhu/Karuppu Ulundhu Vadai. Mina Pappu Garelu.

Ingredients:

Whole Black Lentils 1 cup
Raw rice 2-4 teaspoons
Ginger 2" grated
Green chilies 3 finely chopped
Curry leaves few
Peppercorns 1 spoon - crushed
Cumin seeds 1 spoon - pounded gently
Asafoetida 1 pinch
Oil for shallow frying.

Method:

Soak lentils and rice together for 20 minutes or so. And wet-grind the same to thick paste.

Further add all the above mentioned ingredients to it, except oil. Mix well.

Heat oil in a wok, make fritters with the batter and fry them till golden color and crisp.

Serve warm as a tea time snack, enjoy:)

2.3.11

Black Gram Laddu / Urid Dal Laadu / Karuppu Ulundhu Urundai - Just Like That:)






Urad Dal Laddu:

Curbing that 4 O' Clock sugar rush is a big thing to me! When I stock my pantry with only picky healthy ingredients...gosh, I am saved! I won't be carried away to make any unhealthy choice like pastries-cookies-chocolates! Good, to keep a track of what I put on the shelves, I started post-it notes, clues and cheat cards to keep me away from anything 'Sugary'!!!

Its needless to say' that whole lentils/ whole grains are packed with extra-vitamins and good fiber. Well, for this recipe' I chose, Black Gram and traded white refined sugar with that of brown one'...kool huh! Very simple to whip in minutes...we can make it' just like that:)

Ingredients:

Black Lentils/ Karuppu Ulundhu 1 cup
Brown sugar 1/2 cup
Cardamom pods 3
Milk 2 teaspoons
Ghee/oil few teaspoons
That's all:)

Method:

Dry toast the lentils and cardamom pods. Powder the same coarsely.

Now, mix all the remaining ingredients to it. Bring them into a dough. Divide equal parts and shape them into tiny laddus.

One can cover and place them in fridge for perfect solid laddus. However I end up eating immediately:)

1.3.11

Kollu Dosai / Horse Gram n Brown Rice Dosa





Kollu Dosai:

Kollu Adai. Horse Gram Dosa. Uluva Dosa.

Ingredients:

Brown rice 2 cups
Horse gram 1 cup
Fenugreek seeds 1 spoon
Salt
Baking soda 1 pinch
Oil few spoons.

Method:

Soak the horse gram, fenugreek seeds and brown rice overnight.

Wet-grind the same, add salt, soda and few spoons of oil. Allow this to ferment on its own.

Then, heat up the griddle, make thin or thick crepes, as you wish.

Serve warm along with chutney and sambhar.

28.2.11

Godhumai Ravai Kushka / Samba Rawa Birinji / Cracked Wheat Pilaf




Godhumai Rawai Masala Kitchedi:

You don't have to make that grumpy face at dinner time, anymore! Is healthy food is scaring you a lot? Prepare it enthusiastically with your favorite spices and treat yourselves with exciting morphed recipes:) Well, its not that the wheat (or cracked wheat for that matter) is less in calories than white polished rice, certainly not! All it has is...some extra fiber and am positive that you guys are aware of the health benefits it possess! So, include them in your diet now and then...try to skip white rice, refined flour and fortified-enriched carbohydrates as much as possible! Besides, these tips are only for people who want to cut down their calories (due to health reasons, like diabetes or obesity or simply to stay fit). One common thing' that people on strict diet do is to give up eating quality food! No doctor advises you to starve or deny the basic likings for 'tasty meals'! Just swab fresh produce in place of mere energy foods, tweak your regular meals a little by including healthy ingredients and last but not least, try to get enough physical activity:)I am happy to share this recipe of mine with you all today...I fix this quite often upon request by my social group - relatives n friends! People ranging from senior citizens to adult-kids, who are overwhelmingly alert to stay fit! Oh yeah, I have received lots of appreciation for this:)

Ingredients:

Cracked wheat - 1 cup
Curry leaves few
Green chilies 6-7 slitted
Onion 1 large sliced
Garlic 10-15 cloves
Tomatoes 2 crushed
Mint leaves 1 fistful
Cilantro leaves 1 cup
Salt to taste
Meat/Chicken Broth 2 cups(Vegetarian's options, Veg broth or thin coconut milk)
Fennel seeds 1 spoon
Peppercorns 1 spoon
Cumin seeds 1 spoon
Cinnamon 1 stick
Cloves 3-5
Cardamom 3 crushed
Black cardamom 1
Bay leaves 1-2
Birinji flower 1
Star Anise 1
Ghee or Oil 1/4.

Method:

Dry toast the cracked wheat and set aside.

Heat oil in a wide, deep-heavy bottomed vessel. Throw in all the whole spices, followed by curry leaves, chilies, garlic and onions. Fry real good, till fragrant.

Followed by mint, cilantro leaves and crushed tomatoes. Fry till oil shows up on the sides.

Now add the veg or meat broth, bring this to boil. Further add the cracked wheat without forming any lumps. Cover and cook over low-medium heat.

Once all the moisture is sucked up, and the pilaf looks glossy enough, remove from heat.

Serve warm along with fresh raitha/pachadi or yogurts.

25.2.11

Ragi Paniyaram / Kezhvaragu Paniyaram - Graceful Shapes n Earthy Flavor






Finger-Millet Paniyaram:

Ingredients:

Ragi flour 1 cup
Green chilies 3 chopped
Ginger 1" grated
Onion 1 small chopped
Cilantro leaves few
Curry leaves few
Salt
Asafoetida 1 pinch
Chana dal 1 spoon
Urad dal 1 spoon
Mustard seeds 1/2 spoon
Cumin seeds 1/2 spoon
Sesame oil few spoons.

Method:

In a small pan, heat oil and throw in all the spices one by one and fry real good. Now mix this to the flour and add water, make a heavy consistency batter.

Smear the paniyaram griddle with oil. Fill them up with this batter. Cook both the sides to perfection. There you go...got it.

Serve them with fresh mint or coconut chutney. Dinner ready:)

21.2.11

Karela Paratha / Bitter Gourd Stuffed Paratha / Bitter Melon Stuffed Flat Bread





Pavakkai Paratha

Are you a bitter melon hater? Well, maybe its time to re-consider including it in your diet. As more and more research keeps pointing out that 'bitter tasting gourds' does help to keep the blood glucose level low (I mean it will be highly appreciated by type-2 diabetes patients). I would like to share few tips to retain the essential vitamins fresh and at the same time, to put the bitterness at bay. Rinse the vegetable in sour butter milk several times. Include either lemon juice or tamarind while preparing curry out of it. And increase your spices in proportion, which will counter the bitterness' also enhances the flavor...balances the taste. When you scrape away the ridges and remove the seeds for 'Stuffed Karela', please do not discard the scrap. As you might be already aware of the fact that the seeds and peels are loaded with goodness. I make Sambar out of the scrap sometimes or use them to stuff the gourd/parathas. Works well. So here you go

Ingredients:

Wheat flour 1 bowl
Salt
Cooking soda 1/4 spoon
Warm water 1 cup
Ghee/clear butter

Dough preparation:

In a wide bowl, bring wheat flour. Add salt and soda. Further add warm water and knead this to smooth dough. Add ghee as a finishing touch.

Ingredients:

Bitter Gourd (de seed) and grated
Mashed potatoes 1 small cup(for texture)
Salt
Garam masala powder 1/4 spoon
Cumin powder 1 spoon
Chili powder 1/2 spoon
Coriander powder 1 spoon
Turmeric powder 1/4 spoon
Green chili 2-3 finely chopped
Onions finely chopped 1 cup
Ginger-garlic paste 1 spoon
Coriander leaves 1 cup finely chopped
Dry wheat flour and ghee for making parathas.

Masala preparation:

Heat oil/ghee in a pan and add cumin seeds.

Add green chilies, onions and ginger -garlic paste. Fry till fragrant. Add salt, turmeric, chili, coriander, garam masala and cumin seeds powders.

Now add grated vegetable and mashed potatoes to the above masala, continue cooking...maybe till the vegetable is done.

Paratha Preparation:

Divide the dough into equal parts. Roll them into thin flat breads. Place a table spoon of filling, place an other chappathi over it...seal the edges. Repeat the same for the remaining dough.

Now toss them onto heated griddle, smear oil and cook both the sides.

Serve hot with punjabi gravy.

4.2.11

Kezhvaragu Dosai/ Ragi Dosa /Finger-millet Crepes - The Importance of Good Diet!




Kezhvaragu Dosai:

Ingredients:

Ragi/finger-millet flour flour 1 cup
Urad dal 1/2 cup
Fenugreek seeds 1 spoon
Salt
Baking soda
Oil for the crepes.

Method:

Soak the lentils overnight along with the fenugreek seeds. Wet-grind the same, next day. Add the ragi flour, salt and soda to it. Allow this to ferment...the batter rises to 2-3 fold, so leave enough room for it(I mean, use a wide and large vessel).

Heat up a griddle, make thin crepes...run few spoons of oil, cook both the sides.

Serve warm with chutney, podi or sambar. Enjoy it for break-fast or dinner.

3.2.11

Kala Chana Sundal / Mookadalai Sundal - Make Healthy Eating a Priority!





Brown Mookadalai Sundal:

Spicy Garbanzos Snack. Mookadalai Masala Sundal.

Ingredients:

Brown/black Garbanzos - 1 cup
Salt
Turmeric 1/4 spoon
Chili powder 1 spoon
Green chilies 6 chopped
Ginger 2" chopped
Coconut chopped 1/2 cup
Curry leaves few
Cilantro leaves few
Asafoetida 1/4 spoon
Peppercorns 4-6
Cumin seeds 1/2 spoon
Mustard seeds 1/2 spoon
Sesame oil few spoons.

Method:

Soak the legumes overnight in water. Boil the same in a pressure cooker...maybe add salt at this point.

Now, in a wide wok, heat oil. Add the tempering spices, followed by all the other ingredients plus cooked chana along with its water. Cook over high heat...until all the moisture is gone.

Serve warm as an evening tiffin.