Category Archives: South Indian

Broccoli Walnut Soup

Broccoli Walnut Soup

From a very long time, I’ve been debating on this combination. Finally I made this Soup today. Was creamy to the core. Subtle garlicky flavour and a gentle sprinkle of coarsely crushed pepper further enhanced the taste. Broccoli and Walnuts are a  Sure Shot Winning Combination. 

Ingredients

Steamed Broccoli florets – 4 cups

Finely chopped walnuts –  2 tablespoons

Milk powder – 3 tablespoons

Salt to taste

Coarsely crushed black pepper powder – 2 pinches

Water – 3 cups

Slightly Sauté in oil 

Oil – 1 tablespoon

Chopped onions – 1 cup

Chopped  garlic flakes –  6

Saute  to a  transparent  colour

Topping for the Soup

Grated Cheddar Cheese – little

Chopped steamed Broccoli florets – little

Onions – sliced and deep fried in oil to a  dark golden colour – little

Method

Take a big blender jar. Add in all the above mentioned ingredients along with the sautéed onion and garlic. Blend to a fine purée. Transfer the Broccoli Walnut purée to a pan. Heat the pan. Keep it on sim flame. Once the Soup boils, switch off the stove. Pour into Soup cups and garnish.

Chef’s Tip’s

1) While warming the Soup , please be careful to keep it on simflame, so that the Soup will not discolour.

2) The consistency of the Soup has to be thick, so as to hold the toppings.

3) The crunchy fried onions used for the Soup topping  just melts in the mouth as you bite into it.

 

 

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Beetroot Chawli Soup with Paneer Mini

Beetroot Chawli Soup

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Beetroot Chawli Soup  with Paneer Mini

Chawli is Black Eyed Beans ( lobia, Karamani or thattai payaru ). I had lots of Chawli and Beetroot at home. As  I was making breakfast, I was contemplating to make this Soup for dinner. I sort of formulated this recipe. The taste was delicious, creamy and thick. Quite filling. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Serve this Soup piping hot with Paneer Mini.

Ingredients

Boiled Chawli – 1 cup  + 3 tablespoons for garnishing

Boiled Beetroot pieces –  2 cups

Milk powder – 3 tablespoons

Onion – 1 ( chopped )

Garlic – 6 flakes ( chopped )

Green chilli – 1/2 piece

Salt to taste

Coarsely powdered black pepper powder – 3 pinches

Water   –  1  cup

To Season

Butter – 1 teaspoon

Oil – 1 tablespoon

Jeera – 1 teaspoon ( cumin seeds )

To Garnish

Grated Paneer – little

Boiled Chawli – 3 tablespoons

Finely chopped green coriander leaves – little

Boiled and finely chopped beetroot pieces – little

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Method

Heat a pan. Season. Fry onion and garlic till transparent. Add the green chilli. Sauté for 2 minutes. Switch off the flame. Transfer to a plate. Cool. Take a blender jar. Add the onion mixture, boiled Chawli, boiled beetroot pieces, salt, pepper powder, milk powder and water. Cover the mixie jar. Blend to a fine purée. Pour the blended ingredients in a saucepan. Boil for 5 minutes on sim flame. The Soup will thicken. Switch off the stove. Pour into soup bowls. Garnish. Serve hot with Paneer Mini.

 Chef’s  Tips

1) Do not add more than 1/2 piece of green chilli, the Soup will become very spicy.

2) Chawli Beetroot Soup is very, very soul filling.

 

Winter Vegetable Soup

 Winter Vegetable Soup

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Winter is the best season as you can see abundant produce of various exotic fruits and veggies. Was just debating to make this Soup. Madras Curry Powder plays a great role by imparting a superb flavour to this dish. Best served with buttered toast.

Ingredients

Broccoli Florets – 1 cup

Sliced carrots – 1/4 cup

Diagonally cut beans – 1/4 cup

Diagonally cut  baby Corn – 1/4 cup

Sliced yellow and green zucchini – 1/4 cup

Sweet corn niblets – 2 tablespoons

Green peas – 1/4 cup

( Boil all the veggies in 4 to 5 cups of water and keep aside )

Boiled  Basmathi rice –  2 tablespoons

Boiled  broken moong dhal  (Pasi paruppu ) –  2 tablespoons

Chopped  onions – 1/2 cup

Grated ginger and garlic – 1  teaspoon ( each)

Diced tomatoes – 1/4 cup

Madras Curry Powder –  1 and 1/2 teaspoon ( available in all big super markets. I usedLalah’s  Madras Curry Powder)

Jeera powder – 1/2 teaspoon

Coriander powder – 1/2 teaspoon

Turmeric powder – 3 pinches

Salt to taste

To  Season

Oil –  2tablespoons

Jeera ( cumin seeds ) – 1 teaspoon

To Garnish

Finely chopped green coriander leaves – little

Method

Take a big pan. Put it on the stove top and heat it. Season. First fry the grated ginger and garlic on medium flame. Next sauté the chopped onions. When onions turn transparent, add the diced tomatoes. Cook for 3 minutes. Add the Madras curry powder, salt , jeera powder, coriander powder and turmeric powder. Sauté on medium flame for 3 minutes. Add the boiled vegetables, boiled rice and dhal. Mix gently. Simmer for 5 minutes. Serve piping hot.

Chef’s Tips

1) If the Soup is too thick, dilute with little hot water.

2) Can also add little chopped paneer to the Soup.

 

 

        

 

 

Easy Corn Soup

Corn Soup With Bell PepperTopping

This Sweet Corn Soup is creamy and very, very easy to make. American Sweet Corn is available everywhere now. Very filling when served with garlic bread and a salad. The recipe for you.

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Corn Soup with  Garlic Bread

Ingredients

Boiled Sweet Corn – 2cups

Boiled cooled milk – 1cup

Milk powder – 2 tablespoons

Green chilli – 1/2 inch piece

Salt to taste

white pepper powder – 2 pinches

Method

Take a big blender jar. Add all the above mentioned ingredients. Blend till smooth. Transfer the mix to a pan. Heat it on sim flame for 5 minutes. Serve hot  with bell pepper topping. Serve with garlic bread.

For The Bell PepperTopping

Heat a pan. Keep the flame in sim. Add a tablespoon of olive oil. Add 1 chopped onion and 1 cup of chopped green, red and yellow bell peppers. Sauté for 3 minutes. Add salt to taste. Use as a topping on the Corn Soup.

Chef’s Tips 

1) Boil the Soup on sim flame, so that the Soup will not discolour.

2) Do not add too much green chilli as the Soup will become very, very spicy.

3) If the soup becomes little thick, dilute it with little boiled milk.

Magic Masial

Pidi Karunai Masial

When my vegetable vendor got this vegetable 10 days ago, I was so tempted to make and post this recipe for my blog. This is a signature dish of my mother-in-law. She makes a very unique podi (powder) for this masial. Masial is usually a little mashed curry. To store the pidi karunai  leave it on the plain floor for a week. This way, it will shrink little, and it will not itch or irritate the throat. You can also cook it with a couple of guava leaves (leaves of the guava fruit tree). Pidi Karunai is very good for curing bleeding piles and ulcer.

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Ingredients

Pidi Karunai – 5 nos (soak in water for 5 minutes, and wash well, till clean). Pressure cook for 4 whistles  and keep in sim flame for 5 minutes and switch off. Cool, peel and mash very slightly. See to it  that the pieces are really chunky.

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Picture of Pidi Karunai 

Boiled toovar dhal (boil the dhal with little turmeric powder) – 3/4 cup

Sambar powder – 1 tablespoon

Salt to taste

Jaggery – 1 teaspoon

Thick tamarind extract – 1 cup

Masial podi

Dry roast and powder finely

Raw rice – 1 teaspoon

Toovar dhal – 1 teaspoon

Dry red chillies- 4

white sesame seeds (til)  – 1 teaspoon

Urad dhal – 1 teaspoon

Jeera –  1/2 teaspoon

Dry roast till golden, cool and powder finely.

To Season

Gingelly oil (sesame oil) –  2 tablespoons

Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon

Slit green chillies – 2

Finely chopped  ginger  – 1 tablespoon   (heaped)

Finely chopped Curry leaves –  1 tablespoon

Grated coconut – 4 tablespoons

Asafoetida powder –  1/2 teaspoon

Method

Heat a pan, add the tamarind water. Boil for two minutes on high flame. Add salt, jaggery and sambar powder. Boil for another two minutes. Then add the boiled toovar dhal, slightly mashed pieces of Pidi Karunai. Cook for 2 minutes. Mix the powdered spices with 1 cup of water and add it to the mixture. Boil in sim flame for 5 minutes.

Heat a pan. Add gingelly oil, once the oil is heated add the mustard seeds. When the seeds crackle, then fry green chillies, ginger, asafoetida powder, curry leaves and lastly, add the grated coconut and fry the coconut till golden. Remove the pan from the stove. Add the seasoning to the masial and mix well. Serve hot with plain steamed rice, ghee and fried pappad.

Chef’s Tips

  1. Do not over mash the boiled pidi karunai as it will become like chutney.
  2. Do not cook the pidikarunai as soon as you buy it, leave it to sit for at least a week or ten days.
  3. Goes well with phulkas and plain rice.
  4. lf the  masial becomes thick, dilute it with little hot water.

 

Breakfast Special

Kal Dosai & Brinjal Race Kuzhambu 

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Kal Dosai

A Spongy, Softy, Snow white dosai loved by all. A great breakfast dish, really light on the stomach. Best served with brinjal race Kuzhambu & sesame seed chilli powder (refer to my recipe in the blog)

Ingredients

Idli rice –  1 cup

Raw rice – 1 cup

Whole urad dal – 1/2 cup

Salt to taste

Refined sunflower oil to drizzle around the dosai

Method

Wash & soak both the rice along with the urad dal for 3 hours.

Grind in a wet grinder to a soft dosa batter consistency.

Add salt to taste and mix well.

Cover and leave the batter to ferment for 8 to 9 hours.

Mix well. Heat a dosa tava (dosa pan), drizzle some oil and wipe with a tissue, pour a ladlefull of the dosa batter. Spread lightly. Keep the stove on medium flame. Drizzle oil all around the dosai, cover the pan with a lid. Sim the flame. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Do not flip. Serve hot.

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Brinjal Race Kuzhambu

I still remember my childhood days, when I used to go to my grand mother’s house in Coimbatore for my holidays, she used to prepare and serve this Kuzhambu with soft dosas or with steamed rice..A combination of vegetables- brinjals, ladies finger and drumsticks can be used to make this Kuzhambu.

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Ingredients

Slightly, thickly, sliced brinjals -2 cups

Tamarind extract- 1 cup

Salt to taste

Jaggery a small piece

Roast in oil and powder

Gingelly (sesame) oil – 1 teaspoon

Dry red chillies- 5

Coriander seeds – 2 tablespoons

Raw rice- 1/2 teaspoon

channa dal- 1/2 teaspoon

Urad dal -1/2 teaspoon

Black pepper-6 nos

Broken moong dal(Pasi paruppu) – 1/2 teaspoon

Fenugreek (methi) seeds – 1 pinch

Roast all the above ingredients in oil and cool. Then make it to a fine powder.

To season

Gingelly oil- 3 tablespoons

Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon

cumin seeds (jeera)  – 1/2 teaspoon

Asafoetida- 1/2 teaspoon

Garnish 

Torn curry leaves- little

Method

Heat a pan, add 3 tablespoons of gingelly oil. Season. Add the sliced brinjals, sauté on medium flame. Once half cooked, add the tamarind extract, salt and jaggery. Boil for five minutes on medium flame, add the spice powder, mixed in little water. Simmer for 5 minutes, once the Kuzhambu thickens, switch off. Garnish and mix well. Serve hot.

Chef’s tips

  1. Use of gingelly oil, gives a good flavour and taste.
  2. Do not cook the dosa in high flame as it will discolour.
  3. Kal dosai is a good lunch box option.
  4. Do not boil the tamarind water for too long.

 

 

Valadi Kootu and Jeera Roti

Oh! What is this Valadi Kootu? Most of you will be wondering about this title. Valadi  is a place near Trichy in Tamil Nadu , famous for the temples. My cousin hails from this place. I learnt this kootu from her which is very easy to make and extremely delicious. Please try this recipe. You will enjoy. Goes well with phulka, rotis or steamed rice. Three vegetables which are high in water content are used in this. The recipe for you.

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VALADI  KOOTU

Ingredients:

Boiled toovar dhal (with a pinch of turmeric powder)  – 1 cup

Diced brinjals – 1 cup

Peeled and diced ridge gourd – 2 cups

Thinly sliced snake gourd – 2 cups

Water – Enough to boil the vegetables

Salt  to taste

Rice flour – 1 table spoon

Fry 4 red chillies in oil and crush coarsely with fingers.

To Season

Gingelly oil ( sesame oil) – 1 table spoon

Coconut oil – 1/2 table  spoon

Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon

Urad dhal – 1 table spoon

Curry leaves – 6

Asafoetida – 1/2 teaspoon

Method

Heat water in an open pan. First boil the snake gourd.when half done, add the brinjals. Boil for 10 minutes in a medium flame. add the ridge gourd. Boil for 5 minutes. Add salt to taste. Mix rice flour in little water and add it to the vegetable mix. Boil on sim flame for 3 minutes.  Add the boiled toovar dhal. Add the hand crushed red chillies. Season.

Mix well. Give a boil. Take off the flame. Serve hot with jeera roti!

Chef’s tips

Do not pressure cook the vegetables as they will lose their aroma.

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JEERA ROTI

Jeera roti is soft and tasty. Very simple.

Ingredients

Aashirwad multigrain atta – 2 cups

Whole jeera ( cumin seeds ) – 2 tbsp

Gingelly oil ( sesame oil ) – 1 tbsp

Salt to taste

Water – Enough to make a pliable dough

Refined sunflower oil and ghee – Mix in equal portions

Method

Take a plate. Add the multigrain flour, salt, jeera and gingelly oil. Mix well with the fingers. Add enough water to make soft roti dough. Cover and rest it for 1 hour. Make rotis. Cook on a tawa till golden brown with a mix of ghee and oil on both sides.

Serve hot jeera rotis with piping hot Valadi Kootu.

Every time we cannot serve rotis with rich gravies. A simple delicacy like this will be a good change.

Enjoy!!

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Please write your feedback to me. HAPPY COOKING!

 

 

 

 

Vegetable Soup Rasam

As the name suggests, it’s a delicious rasam that can be enjoyed on it’s own or with hot rice and seppankizhangu (Arbi) fry.

Let’s get started..

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INGREDIENTS 

Toor dhal – 1 cup

Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp

2 cups of Julienned mixed vegetables (carrots, beans, cauliflower, cabbage and green peas)

Drumstick – 1 (chopped)

Onions – 2 (sliced)

Jaggery – A small piece

Tomatoes – 2 cups (blended to a thick puree and filtered)

Capsicum – 1/2 sliced

Tamarind extract – 1 cup

Sambhar powder – 2 tsp

10 Peppercorns and 1 tsp Jeera coarsely powdered

Coriander leaves – To garnish

Curry leaves – To garnish

Ghee – 2 tbsp

Mustard seeds – 1 tsp

Asafoetida – 1/2 tsp

Salt to taste

METHOD

Pressure cook the items (Toor dhal, Turmeric powder, Veggies, Drumstick, Onion, Tomato puree, Capsicum) for 3 whistles. Lower the flame and leave it for 5 minutes.

Mix tamarind extract and sambhar powder to the vegetable mixture. Let it boil for about 5 minutes.

Sprinkle the coarsely ground peppercorns and jeera powder. Season one tsp of mustard seeds, 1/2 tsp asafoetida in 2 tbsp of ghee. Mix it in and leave it to boil for a minute.

Serve garnished with coriander & curry leaves along with hot rice and Seppankizhangu (Arbi) fry or Potato fry or Raw banana fry or Yam fry.

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Chef’s tips:

  1. Julienned veggies tastes better than chopping them into fine pieces. The vegetables will retain their shape and not get mushy.
  2. Adding Gingelly oil (Sesame oil) along with ghee in the seasoning imparts a distinct flavour to the soup rasam.
  3. If you don’t have a pressure cooker, cook dhal and veggies separately and follow the recipe as stated.

BELL PEPPER USILI SEVAI WITH MORKUZHAMBU

Sevai (ready-made rice sticks) is available in dry form in all grocery stores. Processing it is very easy. Sevai with morkuzhambu and fried papad is a delicious combo. Usili sevai tastes great and is easy to prepare. A wholesome dish!  The whole recipe is given in four parts. Enjoy!

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BELL PEPPER USILI SEVAI

To make Sevai

Take a pan. Boil 10 cups of water. Add ¼ teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon oil(refined sunflower oil). Add 3 big handfuls of sevai. Stir well. Switch off the stove. Cover the pan. Leave it aside for 5 to 6 minutes. Then drain in a colander and refresh with cold water. Cover and keep aside.

INGREDIENTS FOR USILI

Usili is made with dhal. Very nutritive and delicious.

1 cup – Bengal gram dhal

1/4 cup – Toor dhal

3 – Dry red chillies

Salt to taste

½ teaspoon – Turmeric powder

1 teaspoon – Asafoetida powder.

Soak the dhal for 2 hours. Strain the soaked dhal. In a blender add the dhal, salt, red chillies and the other ingredients and grind coarsely. Keep it aside.

OTHER INGREDIENTS

Red bell pepper          1

Yellow bell pepper      1

Green bell pepper       2

( diced to big cubes)

Oil                                1 tablespoon

Salt                              ¼ teaspoon

METHOD

Heat a pan. Add oil. Stir fry the bell peppers. Add salt. Switch off the stove. Leave it aside.

TO SEASON THE SEVAI

Gingelly oil or Sesame oil – 4 tablespoon

Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon

Urad dhal –  2 teaspoons

Few finely chopped curry leaves

TO GARNISH

Golden fried cashew nuts (halved)        2 tablespoons

Finely chopped coriander leaves           little

PREPERATION

Heat a big wide-mouthed pan. Season all the ingredients for the sevai. Now fry the ground usili mix. Keep the flame in sim. Cover the pan. Cook for 10 minutes. Stir gently. Once the dhal paste is cooked add the stir fried bell peppers. Cook for 3 minutes on sim flame. Now add the boiled, strained sevai. Switch off the stove. Mix the ingredients gently. Cover the pan and leave for 5 minutes. Stir gently. Garnish. Mix again and serve with morkuzhambu.

RECIPE FOR MORKUZHAMBU

INGREDIENTS

Fresh curds ( whisked )              2 cups

Salt                                             to taste

TO GRIND TO A FINE PASTE

Grated coconut                     1 cup

Green chillies                        3

Red chillies                           2

Rice flour                              2 teaspoons

Turmeric powder                  a pinch

TO SEASON

Coconut oil                            1 tablespoon

Mustard seeds                       1 teaspoon

Curry leaves (chopped)         1 teasoon

TO GARNISH

Finely chopped coriander leaves             a little

METHOD

Take a pan. Add the whisked curds, salt and the ground paste.  Keep on low flame for 5 to 6 minutes. Switch off the stove.

Season, garnish, mix well and serve with usili sevai.

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CHEF’S TIPS

1. Do not mix the sevai with hands. It will get spoilt soon.

2. Using 3 colour bell peppers gives the dish a good appearance and tastes very good.

3. Never boil the morkuzhambu for a long time as it will split

4. We can also prepare the sevai with green peppers only. The option can be used as a variation.

5. This Morkuzhambu tastes excellent with plain rice and a potato fry too!!

KOVIL DOSAI WITH BLACK SESAME SEED CHILLI POWDER

Kovil in Tamil language means temple. This dosai is famous in Singaperumal kovil near Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

©Deepa Sekhar
©Deepa Sekhar

INGREDIENTS

2 cups – Raw rice
1/2 cup – Whole urad dal
1/4 cup – Urad dal with skin
Salt to taste
3 tbsp – Coarsely powdered Jeera
1 tbsp – Coarsely powdered black pepper
1 tbsp – Finely chopped curry leaves
1 tsp – Dry ginger powder
1tsp – Asafoetida powder
1tsp – Whole Jeera
Ghee and gingelly oil mixed together

©Deepa Sekhar
©Deepa Sekhar

METHOD

Soak raw rice and both the urad dals separately for 2 hours. Grind the urad dal separately for 20 to 20 minutes till the texture is fluffy and soft. Add the rice to the grinder and grind to a smooth batter along with the urad dal. Add salt to taste. Mix well. Ferment for 6 to 8 hours. Mix in coarsely powdered jeera, black pepper powder, dry ginger powder, curry leaves, asafoetida powder and whole jeera. Make little thick dosas and circle the edge with the mix of ghee and gingelly oil. Flip the dosa to the other side. Cook till light golden.
Serve with BLACK SESAME SEED CHILLI POWDER mixed in gingelly oil.

BLACK SESAME SEED CHILLI POWDER

This chilli powder tastes great with idlis, dosas and a sprinkle on curd rice tastes divine.

INGREDIENTS

1 cup – Urad dal with skin
1/2 cup – (Black gram) Channa dal (Bengal gram)
2 cups – Black sesame seeds
1 1/4 cups – Dry red chillies (broken to pieces)
1/2 cup – Curry leaves (washed and wiped dry)
A small piece tamarind
2 tsp – Asafoetida powder
1 1/2 tsp – Gingelly oil
A small piece jaggery

METHOD

Heat a heavy bottomed pan. First, dry roast the drained, dried black sesame seeds till it sputters. Remove in a plate and cool. Next in the same pan, add half teaspoon of gingelly oil and fry the curry leaves till crunchy. Remove in a plate and cool. Heat the gingelly oil and fry the urad dal, channa dal broken red chillies on sim flame. When golden add the salt, asafoetida powder and tamarind. Fry for two minutes. Remove in a plate and cool. Add jaggery. Blend this mix in a blender with curry leaves and black sesame seeds to a coarse powder. Transfer in an air tight bottle. Whenever needed, mix this powder with gingelly oil in small batches and serve with idli or dosai.

©Deepa Sekhar
©Deepa Sekhar

CHEF TIPS

1. Always use a combination of plain urad and urad dal with skin
2. Gingelly oil is sesame seed oil.