Shimla ( green capsicum ) Baingan ( Brinjal ) Raitha

Shimla Baingan Raitha

A very, very soothing raitha, a great accompaniment to the jack fruit biriyani. Use fresh thick curds. Top with a sprinkle of black pepperpowder and black salt. Wow, just amazing. Enjoy.

Ingredients

Fresh thick curds ( whisked ) – 3 cups

Chopped green capsicum – 1

Grated garlic – 1 flake

Salt to taste

Sugar – 1 teaspoon

To Season 

Oil – 2 tablespoons

Jeera ( cumin seeds ) – 1 teaspoon

To Garnish

Golden fried ( deep fried ) slices of brinjal – 1 cup

A sprinkle of Coarsely crushed black pepper powder

A sprinkle of black salt

Finely chopped green coriander leaves – little

Method 

Heat a pan. Season. Add the grated garlic and sauté on sim flame for 3 minutes. Add the chopped green capsicum. Sauté on sim flame for 3 minutes. Add salt to taste. Add the sugar and switch off the stove. Cool well. Take a bowl. Add the capsicum mix, whisked thick curds. Mix well. Garnish and serve at once.

Chef’s Tips

1) Always whisk the curds for the Raitha.

2) Just before serving the raitha add the deep fried brinjal slices. Do not add the deep fried brinjal slices earlier. The raitha will discolour.

3) This Raitha will also go well with any stuffed parathas, hot puris , phulkas and jeera rice.

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Jack Fruit Biriyani with Shimla ( green capsicum ) Baingan ( Brinjal ) Raitha

Jack Fruit Biriyani

This is an extremely exotic dish.  It should be served steaming hot so that the aroma and the flavours combine well. A very fruity Biriyani. The powdered masalas give a great punch to the dish. Serve with Shimla Baingan Raitha for that little extra taste.

Ingredients 

Cooked Basmathi rice – 2 cups

Jack Fruit – 1/2 cup ( de – seeded , chopped to thick long slices )

Boiled Vegetables – 1 cup ( carrots, beans, green peas)

Sliced onions – 1 cup

Turmeric powder – 1/2 teaspoon

Salt to taste

To pound together 

Garlic flakes – 5

Green chillies – 1

Peeled and chopped ginger – 2 teaspoons

Dry roast and powder little coarsely

Coriander seeds – 1 and 1/4 teaspoon

Kashmiri red chillies -4

Cloves -2

Cardamom – 1

Methi seeds – 4

Black pepper – 3

Cinnamon – 1 very small piece

Dry roast all the above mentioned ingredients to a golden colour on sim flame. Switch off the stove. Cool and powder coarsely. Keep aside.

To Season

Ghee – 3 tablespoons

Oil – 1 tablespoon

Jeera ( cumin seeds ) – 1 teaspoon

To Garnish

Jack Fruit – 1/2 cup ( de – seeded and chopped to long thick slices )

Finely chopped green coriander leaves – little

Finely chopped mint leaves – little

Method

Heat a big pan. Season. First fry the sliced onions on medium flame for 3 minutes. Once the onions turn transparent, add the pounded mixture. Sauté on sim flame for 5 minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes, turmeric powder, salt to taste and the boiled vegetables. Saute on sim flame for 5 minutes. Add the coarsely powdered spices and the cooked rice. Mix gently. Keep the flame on sim. After 5 minutes, add the jackfruit pieces. Mix . Keep on sim flame for 3 minutes. Switch off the stove. Garnish and serve piping hot with Shimla Baingan Raitha.

Chef’s Tips

1) Can add halved cashew nuts ( fried in ghee ) to the Biriyani.

2) Adding the jack fruit while sautéing and adding again with the garnishing ingredients, doubly adds to the taste of the Biriyani .

 

 

 

 

Pachai Malli (Green Coriander leaves ) Kootu

Pachai Malli Kootu

Pachai Malli in Tamil is green Coriander leaves. This herb is rich in vitamins, iron and calcium and green coriander leaves  has got many medicinal properties too .

This Kootu is very nostalgic to me. It is my grand mother ‘s recipe. I am extremely pleased to share this recipe with you. We have been making and enjoying this Kootu for decades. Goes well with soft dosa, puri, phulka and plain rice. Can make it  in a jiffy.

Ingredients

Boiled toovar dhal – 1/2 cup

Peeled and cubed potatoes – 1 cup

Cubed brinjals – 1 cup

Chopped tomatoes – 1/2 cup

Turmeric powder – 3 pinches

Salt to taste

Jaggery – a very small piece

Water – 4 cups

Grind to a fine paste 

Grated coconut – 1/4 cup

Dried red chillies – 5 ( roasted in oil )

Rice flour – 2 teaspoons

Grind the above mentioned ingredients to a fine paste with little water.

To Season

Oil – 2 tablespoons

Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon

Asafoetida powder – 1/2 teaspoon

To Garnish

Finely chopped green coriander leaves –  2  cups

Method

Heat a pan. Add water. First cook the cubed potatoes on medium flame. When potatoes are half done, add the cubed brinjals and the chopped tomatoes. Cook on sim flame. Once the veggies are cooked, add salt to taste, jaggery and the ground paste. Cook on sim flame for 5 minutes. The Kootu will become thick. Switch off the stove. Season and garnish. Mix well. Serve hot.

Chef”s Tips

1) Chop the potatoes and the brinjals to big cubes.

2) Do not add curry leaves, the flavour of the green coriander leaves is just superb.

 

 

 

 

 

Thaen Mezhugu

Thaen Mezhugu

This is a very simple recipe. I learnt it from my mil. Goes well with adai and pidi kozhukattai. You will love this.

Ingredients

Grated syrup jaggery ( Paagu Vellam ) – 2 cups

Water – enough to cover the jaggery

Dry ginger powder – 2 pinches

Method

Heat a pan. Add the grated jaggery and enough water to cover the jaggery. Boil till the jaggery dissolves. Strain the jaggery syrup into a pan. Boil on sim flame till the jaggery syrup thickens.  The consistency of the syrup has to be thick like the dosa batter. Transfer to a stainless steel container. Chill it. Leave it in the fridge. Stays good for a week.

Chef ‘s  Tips

  1.  Use good coloured jaggery .
  2. The use of ginger powder will take care of the throat. You will not have  kich kich in the throat.

Traditional Adai with Thaen Mezhugu

Traditional Adai

Easily  the best , one of the authentic recipe for Adai that I learnt from my  husband’s aunt. Thick, crispy and tasty, I am sure you will enjoy every bit of it. The best combination for this Adai is  a big blob of Amul butter and Thaen Mezhugu. Do try this recipe for the weekend and please post your feedback.

Ingredients 

Idli rice – 4  cups

Thoovar  dhal –  1 cup

Bengal gram dhal ( Channa dhal ) – 1 cup

Urad dhal – 1 handful

Dry red Kashmiri Chillies – 12 ( soaked in water for 3 hours)

Salt to taste

Peeled small onions ( sambar onions ) –  2 cups( chopped to round slices)

Chopped  green coriander leaves – 2 tablespoons

Chopped curry leaves – 2 tablespoons

oil – enough to drizzle around the adai.

Method

Wash and  soak the rice and dhal for 4 hours. Take a big blender jar. Drain the  soaked rice and dhal. Addthe drained red chillies. Put the rice and dhal along with the chillies into the blender jar.

Add enough water to grind it to a coarse paste. Add salt to taste. Mix well. Next add the chopped small onions, chopped green coriander leaves and the chopped curry leaves. Mix well. Cover and leave it aside for 30 minutes. The consistency of the adai batter has to be thick like idli batter. Do not make the batter runny.

Heat a non stick pan. Grease the pan with little oil. Pour a ladleful of the adai batter.  Do not make the adai thin. Let the adai be thick. Make 3 holes in the middle of the adai. Drizzle oil into the hole and around the adai. Cook on sim flame till golden. Flip the adai. Again , drizzle oil  around the adai. Cook till golden. Transfer the adai to a plate. Use up the batter to make more adais in  the same way .Serve hot with a big blob of butter and Thaen Mezhugu.

Chef’s Tips

1) Can add little drumstick leaves to the adai batter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kadarangai Ellu Pachadi (Citron Sesame Pachadi )

Kadarangai Ellu Pachadi 

Kadarangai or Citron or Wild Lemon belongs   to the Lemon family. Kadarangai has lots of medicinal properties. It works as a Liver Cleanser. High inVitaminC, Calcium  and Magnesium. My next door Aunty gave me some citron, I decided to prepare a Pachadi. The taste was tangy, refreshing and had a good aroma. Goes well with curd rice, roti, puri, mixed rice varieties, rasam rice and  sambar rice.

Ingrediens

Washed, wiped and  chopped ( de – seeded and chopped ) citron- 1 big one( Remove the seeds or  else the Pachadi will become bitter )

Turmeric powder – 3/4 teaspoon

Grated jaggery – 1 and 1/2 cups

Sugar – 3 tablespoons

Water – 1 cup

Tamarind paste – 1 Peanut size ( mixed in 1 cup of water )

Dry Roast And Powder Finely

Raw rice – 1 tablespoon

White Sesame seeds – 1 tablespoon

Dry red Kashmiri chillies – 6

Fenugreek seeds ( methi seeds ) – 6

( Dry roast the above mentioned ingredients to a golden colour  and powder finely )

To Season

Gingelly oil – 4 tablespoons

Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon

Jeera ( cumin n seeds )

To Garnish

Finely chopped curry leaves- little

Wheat Rava Upma and Kadarangai Ellu Pachadi 

Method

Heat a big wide – mouthed pan. Season. Add the chopped Citron pieces. Sauté on sim flame for 2 minutes. Add the tamarind paste mixed in 1 cup of water. Add the salt to taste, jaggery, turmeric powder  and sugar.  Cook it on medium flame for 5 minutes. Add the powdered spices. Mix well. Simmer for 5 minutes. Switch off the stove. Serve.

Chef’s Tips

1) Do not chop the Citron to small pieces. It will become mushy.

2) Store this Pachadi in the fridge. It will keep good for 3 to 4 days.

3) I have used sugar also. The sugar will give a sheen to the Pachadi.

4) Do not add too much tamarind. The taste will be too , too tangy.

 

Urad Dhaniya Sabzi

Urad Dhaniya Sabzi

A riot of colours, a very different  tasting sabzi. I learnt this recipe from  Sowdha Aunty. I would like to share a little info about Sowdha Aunty. She was a mother to me. I learnt a lot of  recipes from her. I still cherish the days I spent with her. I lived opposite to her house in Trichy.This sabzi goes well with roti, puri, jeera rice and tastes yum when served with plain rice and a dhal. This is a sookhi ( dry )  sabzi.

Ingredients

Peeled and chopped to little thick strips – Carrots, Potatoes and Knol – Khol  – each – 1/2 cup

Beans – 1/2 cup ( chopped to long pieces )

Green peas – 1/2 cup

Cauliflower – ( chopped to small florets ) – 1 cup

Onion – 1 ( sliced )

Tomatoes  – 2 cups ( chopped )

Turmeric powder – 1/2 teaspoon

Kashmiri chilli powder – 1 teaspoon

Salt to taste

Sugar – 1/2 teaspoon

Dry roast and powder finely

Urad dhal – 1 teaspoon

Dhaniya ( coriander seeds ) – 1 teaspoon

Black pepper – 1/2 teaspoon

Dry roast the above mentioned ingredients without oil on sim flame to a golden colour. Switch off the stove. Cool. Powder finely. Keep aside.

To Season

Oil- 4 tablespoons

Jeera ( cumin seeds ) – 1 teaspoon

To Garnish 

Finely chopped green coriander leaves – little

Method

Heat a pan. Season. First sauté the onions on medium  for 2 minutes. Next add the chopped veggies except the cauliflower. Add the chopped tomatoes. Add the turmeric powder. Cover and cook on sim flame. Once the veggies are 3/4 cooked add the cauliflower florets. Cover the pan and cook on sim flame. Once the veggies are fully cooked add salt to taste, sugar, chilli powder and the powdered  urad and Dhaniya powder. Sauté gently for 2 minutes. Switch off the stove . Garnish. Mix . Serve hot with phulkas.

Chef’s Tips

1) Sprinkle little melted ghee on the sides of the sabzi pan and mix gently for that little added taste.

2) Knol – kohl  is Kohlrabi in  English .

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cookery Contest programme

I was invited today to judge a cookery contest event  Ammavum Naanum by Hello 106.4 fm. The event was sponsored by Aashirwad Atta and Preethi mixie. Had a wonderful time at the event. I was very happy to select 3 winners from about 75 participants. At the end of the programme they felicitated me for judging the event. I am very happy to share this with you all. 

Batani Kuruma Kootu

Batani Kuruma Kootu

Oh!  what is this Kuruma Kootu?  Batani is Green Peas, Kuruma Kootu is a special recipe which I learnt from my friend Suganthi . Kuruma Kootu has boiled dhal along with other ingredients. An exceptionally tasty recipe. Goes well with dosa, soft idlis, phulka, jeera rice, parathas and plain rice. Do try and enjoy .

Ingredients 

Boiled Toovar dhal – 3 tablespoons

Boiled green peas – 1 cup

Kashmiri chilli powder – 1 teaspoon

Turmeric powder – 2 pinches

Coriander powder – 1/4 teaspoon

Jeera powder – 1/4 teaspoon

Salt to taste

Sugar – 1/2 teaspoon

Oil  – 2 tablespoons

Ghee – 1 tablespoon

Water – 1/4 cup

Fry in oil and grind to a fine paste

Oil – 1 teaspoon

Chopped small onions ( sambar onions ) – 10

Chopped tomatoes – 3 ( use nice ripe red tomatoes )

Chopped garlic – 5 flakes

Chopped green chillies – 2

Grated coconut – 4 tablespoons

Halved cashewnuts – 2 tablespoons

Tamarind paste – 1/4 teaspoon

( fry the above mentioned ingredients in oil on sim flame for 5 minutes. Switch off the stove. Cool. Blend the ingredients in a blender with little water to a fine paste. )

To Season

Oil – 1 tablespoon

Cardamoms – 3

Cloves – 4

Cinnamon – 1 medium piece

Saunf ( aniseed ) – 2 pinches

To Garnish 

Finely chopped green coriander leaves – little

 

Method

Heat a pan. Add 2 tablespoons of oil and 1 tablespoon of ghee. First fry the blended paste on sim flame for 5 minutes. (Cover the pan and fry the paste to avoid splattering on the kitchen backsplash. )Next add salt to taste, sugar, turmeric powder, chilli powder, jeera powder and the coriander powder. Sauté on sim flame for 5 minutes. Add the boiled dhal and the boiled green peas. Mix well. Add 1/4 cup of water. Simmer for 5 minutes. Once the Kuruma Kootu starts to thicken, oil and ghee will start to seep, switch off the flame. Season and garnish. Serve hot.

Chef’s Tips

1) Since there is cashewnuts and dhal, the Kuruma Kootu will thicken. If it becomes very thick just dilute it with little hot water. Do not make it runny. The taste will not be there.

2) A very good dish for the lunch box. Goes well with curd rice too.

 

 

 

Banana and Peanut Butter Smoothie

Banana  and Peanut Butter Smoothie

Smoothies  have become increasingly popular. A Smoothie is a thick drink, mixed with fruits and dairy products. The combination of  Banana and Peanut Butter, OMG !  Just terrific.  A very filling Smoothie.

Ingredients

Peeled and chopped bananas – 3 cups

Peanut butter – 3 heaped tablespoons

Fresh thick Yogurt – 3 cups

Honey – 3 teaspoons

Milk powder – 3 tablespoons

Crystal salt – 3 pinches

Water – 1/4 cup

Crushed ice –  little

Method 

Take a big blender jar. Add in all the above mentioned ingredients. Blend well. Serve at once.

Chef’s Tips

1) Crush the ice  well and add it in the blender, so that the blades of the blender will be intact.

2) Certain blenders will not be able to handle the crushed ice, in which case, blend the Smoothie and top it with crushed ice and serve.

3) Use only fresh thick yogurt.