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Mysore Masala Dosa

Mysore Masala Dosa with Tomato Methamba, Garlic Curry Hummus, Green Chutney & Sambar

This is my husband's most favorite dosa. I like to call it "Origami Dosa" as you gently fold the crisp dosa right on the tawa. Generally green or red chutney (depending on the restaurant you visit) is smeared inside. A dollop of potato masala is added. If you want a special touch, you can fry the dosa using ghee to make sumptuous "Ghee Mysore Masala Dosa".

Since I wanted to take a picture for my blog, I went a little overboard and served my Mysore masala dosa with four accompaniments. However, I must confess that, generally I serve it with just sambar and green chutney.

Mysore Masala Dosa
South Indian Crepe with Potato Mash - Mysore style

Suggested Accompaniments
  • Hotel Sambar
  • Chutney

1. Heat nonstick pan/tawa.
2. Add a ladleful of batter and spread it quickly to make a big circle.
3. Drizzle some oil or ghee - if using around the dosa edges. Cover. Let it cook on the medium heat.
4. Lift the cover. If the dosa seems to be cooked, smear the green chutney all over.
5. Add a dollop of potato masala in the center.
6. By now the edges of the dosa around the circumference should be crisp and almost curling up.
7. This is the indicator that the dosa is ready to be folded.
8. With a wooden spatula, fold all the three sides - one at a time - to form a perfect triangle.
9. Serve it on the serving plate so the folds are not visible.
10. Serve with sambar and chutney of your choice.

Note -
1. You can also smear ghee/clarified butter before smearing chutney to make it richer in taste.
2. After dosa is made, I always clean the nonstick pan with a clean towel to get rid of all the crumbs or marks.
3. Sometimes instead of smearing any wet chutney, I smear Molgapodi, pudi chutney or any dry chutney of your choice. Just make sure that the chutney is not too watery.
4. These days, instead of using coconut in the chutneys, I have started using garbanzo beans from the can.

Source:  Enjoy Indian Food

Crispy Uraddal - Pepper Fritters / Minapa Vadalu

Fourth week of BM#17 starts from today and I have chosen "vadas / fritters" as my theme. I am going with these crispy, urad dal fritters for my Day 1 post. These vadas are used to form the "vadamala"  - the garland of urad dal fritters, offered to Lord Hanuman on Hanuman Jayanthi festival or as an offering at temples. While the regular vadas are soft and fluffy these are on the crispier side and are spicy.
Though traditionally made for religious purposes, they are a wonderful accompaniment to evening coffee / tea.

  • 1 cup black gram / urad dal
  • 1 - 2 tsp rice flour
  • Salt to taste
  • Coarsely crushed pepper as per taste (Usually the vadas are on the spicier side.)
  • Oil to fry

* Soak urad dal for about an hour. Drain and grind dal into a coarse, thick batter adding no water. Or add a couple of teaspoons of water if grinding becomes difficult.
* Meanwhile, start heating oil in a frying pan or a kadai on medium flame.
* Transfer the ground dal to a bowl. Add rice flour, crushed pepper, salt and a Tbsp of hot oil to the dal and mix well. Addition of rice flour and hot oil is to ensure that the vadas stay on crispier side.
* Take a big marble sized batter and pat the batter ball as thinly as possible on a greased plastic sheet. Poke a hole at the center with the index finger. Open your right hand and gently flip the sheet onto the fingers so that disc is transferred to your hand. Gently slide it into the hot oil for frying. Fit as many vadas as the kadai can hold. Fry them on low - medium flame until golden brown. Keep flipping in between to ensure uniform cooking. 
If vadas are made for snacking, there is no need to poke the holes in discs. The holes are meant to thread the garland.
* Repeat the steps with the remaining batter, greasing the plastic sheet each time you use it.
* Store them in an airtight container.
Source:  Veggie Platter

Chives Daal

Once I had gone with my friend to visit her grandmother. My friend's aaji's house was near Pune. For lunch, aaji had made delicious daalichi amti. One unique thing that I noticed immediately was that the aamti was flavored with olya kaandyachi paat or spring onion greens. It was so different and delicious. Aaji had a little garden in her backyard and she shared that she would add the fresh herbs to the daily daal and each herb added its own unique flavor.
My friend's aaji's Daal was my inspiration when I decided to add chives from my backyard to my daily daal. Chives has a mild flavor - kind of a cross between garlic and onion. So it worked perfectly with my daal.
Chives Daal
Daily Daal with Chives
  • 3/4 cup toor daal
  • 1/2 tsp tamarind pulp
  • 1 tsp jaggery
  • salt to taste
  • 2 tsp oil
  • 4-5 fenugreek seeds
  • 1/4 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp asafoetida
  • 1/4 tsp cumin seeds
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 tbsp minced chives greens
  • 1/2 tbsp goda masala
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
1. Pressure cook toor daal and keep aside
2. Heat oil in a saucepan.
3. Add all the seeds. Add garlic cloves and chives greens. Saute for few minutes. Now add goda masala and paprika. Saute again for 1 minute.
4. Add  cooked & mashed toor daal & water as needed to adjust the desired consistency.
5. Now add salt, tamarind and jaggery. Bring to boil.
6. Switch gas to low and let it simmer - stirring in between - for at least 10 minutes.
7. Garnish with more chives greens if you like.
1. Do not make this daal watery.
2. Similar daal can be made using garlic greens or onion greens.
3. As a variation, you can add mixed daals instead of using just toor daal.
Source:  Enjoy Indian Food

Theepi Pesara Punukulu / Sweet Moongdal Fritters

I am an ardent fan of a cooking show that airs on one of the popular Telugu TV channels and I particularly like the chef's style of cooking.  I am no longer watching the show but have some interesting and traditional recipes scribbled in my journal from the past shows. One of those happens to be these punukulu.

Punukulu / punugulu refer generally to the spicy fritters made with dosa / idli batter that is served as breakfast in Andhra homes. Though I am well versed with the spicy version, we are not the ones who would go with an oil filled kadai for the breakfast. I was contemplating whether to go with this traditional dish for this BM when I suddenly remembered the sweeter version from the show. I had jotted down the recipe since it was intriguing and probably if not for BM, I wouldn't have tried it. :) I prepared a small batch today and they came out really good. The recipe is a simple one and also the punukulu can be prepared quickly. These moong dal fritters are not overtly sweet and are delicious with subtle hints of pepper.

Ingredients: (Yield 10 fritters)
  • 1/2 cup moongdal
  • 1/4 cup powdered jaggery
  • 1 Tbsp rice flour
  • 1/8 tsp black pepper powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • Oil to fry

* Heat oil in a frying pan.
* Wash and soak moong dal for about an hour.
* Drain moong dal completely and grind without adding any water.
* Transfer the ground dal to a bowl, add the remaining ingredients to it and mix well.
* Take small portions of the batter, shape into balls and drop into the oil. Or drop spoonfuls of batter into the hot oil. Fit only as many as the frying pan holds.
* Fry on low flame until golden brown, turning around intermittently with a spoon ensuring that they are cooked through.
* Remove them with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
* Serve them warm.
Source: Veggie Platter

Tarbuj Rose Sharbat

I got introduced to this Watermelon-Rose syrup combo after my marriage. My MIL makes two types of these watermelon-rose drinks especially on the hot, sweltering summer days in India.

Tarbuj Rose Sharbat
Watermelon-Rose Syrup Drink
A small chunk of watermelon, cut into bite sized pieces
2 tsp rose syrup per glass
Ice-cold water

1. Place bite sized watermelon pieces in tall serving glasses.
2. Pour Rose syrup per glass.
3. Pour ice cold water and stir.
4. Serve immediately with a tall spoon and a straw.

Note -
1. Garnish with mint if desired.
2. You can use a melon scooper to make small watermelon balls.

Source:  Enjoy Indian Food

Taro Root Fry with Hot Chilli Ginger Dip

Some recipes are passed generation to generation.Todays dish was 
shared by my great grand mother in law to my MIL !! The beauty of this dish is the dip that perfectly compliments the flavor of the taro root. My MIL taught me this dish as it is one of my hubby's favorite. And sure you would enjoy it too...

  • 1/2 kg taro root medium size
  • salt to taste
  • oil for deep fry
For dip
  • 1 inch ginger
  • 6 long red chillies
  • salt to taste
Wash taro in running water and pressure cook it with enough water and salt for 3 whistles and sim it on low flame for 3 minutes. Switch off the cooker and once it cools discard the water totally and peel the skin.Cut the in circles with a 1/2 cm thickness. Heat oil in a pan and deep fry them till they are crispy and golden brown.Serve immediately with the dip. It can also be served with rice.

Grind all the ingredients to a smooth paste for the dip, traditionally 
it is crushed in mortar and pestle.
Note: It is ideal to prepare the dip before the fry as you can serve the taro fry crispy with the dip.
Source:  Super Yummy Recipes

Vegan Shevyachi Kheer

My Vegan co-worker wants to learn some Indian cooking with me. So I am trying to veganize some of my recipes. Before we actually cook together, I would like to make those dishes, taste them, take notes and be confident that they would work for my friend. So this is my first attempt at making a Vegan dessert by replacing milk with non-dairy milk.

When thinking about Vegan Indian desserts - without tweaking anything - I can think of Puran PoLi and Ukadiche Modak which are totally vegan. Of course they are served with clarified butter/toop/ghee, but if you hold that off, these are vegan desserts. But I don't think that we have that much time to make Puran PoLi or Modak. So I thought of tweaking my Shevyachi Kheer recipe.

I went to the Whole Foods to check out the "non-dairy" milk. There were plenty of options which made me dizzy. Rice Milk, Soy Milk, Almond Milk, Hemp Milk, Oats Milk. Finally I decided to use "Almond Milk" thinking we use almond slivers in many Indian desserts so it may work ok.

When I tried the recipe, I was pleasantly surprised to see the result. I was feeling a bit adventurous that day so instead of sugar, I used "Agave Nectar".

Vegan Shevyachi Kheer
Vegan Vermicelli Pudding
  • 1/2 cup roasted vermicelli
  • 3 cups almond milk
  • 2 tbsp agave nectar (or sugar if you desire)

Crush to powder
3-4 Green Cardamoms, peeled

1. In a heavy bottomed saucepan, roast vermicelli lightly on a low flame.
2. Add almond milk. Bring to boil while stirring continuously.
3. Add agave nectar or sugar and crushed cardamom powder.
4. Simmer for few minutes.
5. Serve warm.

Note -
1. If made too much in advance, vermicelli may soak up all the almond milk. In that case, add some more almond milk and adjust agave nectar/sugar accordingly.
2. You can use more agave/sugar if you want your kheer to be sweeter.
3. I like to keep some liquid in my kheer. But if you want you can decrease the amount of almond milk and make thick pudding.
4. If you like, you can also add some raisins and almond slivers. Roast them before roasting sevya and let them plump up in the almond milk.
5. 1 tsp sugar =  1 1/4 tsp Agave Nectar. So use it accordingly.
6. For making Indian desserts, I buy vermicelli from the local Indian stores.

Source: Enjoy Indian Food

Pesara Pindi Bellallu / Green Gram Bubbles

A traditional dish always brings back sweet memories of childhood.And my mom was a expert to dole out so many savory dishes throughout the year.She ensured every season and moment had a special dish.She recently came over and I requested her to prepare this savory green gram bubbles tradionally known as pesara pindi bellallu. The texture and flavor of this savory evening snack can make your family rejoice the moment.The best part is it should be eaten warm with unlimited servings of ghee.!!So enjoy this savory snack my mom has prepared for me and my hubby.

  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 1 cup green gram flour (see the note )
  • pinch of hing
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1/4 cup sesame
  • oil to fry
  • salt to taste
  • ghee for accompaniment

Mix all the above ingredients except sesame. Add enough water to it into make a nice soft dough.Divide the dough into equal part of medium size balls.Sprinkle sesame on each ball.On a plastic sheet take each ball and press it firmly to shape it in a round shape. Heat oil in a pan and deep fry it on a medium flame till each side is golden brown. Serve warm with a dash of ghee.

1. To make green gram flour grind it into a fine powder and sieve it. 
2.While pressing each ball do not press to much, it should be little thick for it to bubble.
Source: Super Yummy Recipes

Green apple and cucumber salad

Sunday means waking  up late in the morning  have a heavy breakfast, this is the time table for us almost every Sunday. Like every Sunday we wake up late in the morning, we have Pesarattu- upma and Allam chutney with coffee for break fast. This is a quite a heavy breakfast so we want to do some work to digest that heavy breakfast. So i changed mud from my pots and put some new plants and cleaned the place where i kept the pots. Still we are not hungry we went out for our week end shopping to by vegetables and other stuff.
sunday lunch                                                                        When i enter the vegetable and fruit shop this green apples said welcome to me i was very happy to see this green fresh apples and i picked some. That time i didn't have this salad idea in my mind. when we come back home, Feeling little hungry so my husband surprisingly asked me to make a salad and some drink. Then i thought of making green apple salad with mango badam milk (recipe coming up). I didn't have any idea what dressing i am going to add to this salad. I just added what i have in my ketchen and what i like, even vegetables and fruits what i brought from the market i used them in this salad. And the salad came out really so delicious. From now this is going to be one of my favorite salads. That crunchy vegetables and fruits make you very refreshing. Like me hope you also like my salad.
Lets check how i made this green, crunchy salad...
green apple salad INGREDIENTS:--

  • Green Apples  -- 2 cut in to bite size pieces
  • Red apple   --- 1 cut in to bite size pieces
  • Cucumber  --- 2 cut in to bite size pieces
  • Green bell pepper  -- 1 big cut in to bite size pieces
  • Lettuce  --      8 leaves break them in to small pieces
For Dressing:--  
  • Honey -- 1 tab sp
  • Olive oil  --- 1 tab sp
  • Lemon juice  -- 1 tab sp +1 tea sp
  • Red chilli flakes -- 1 tea sp
  • Salt a pinch
1. Cut apples in to bite size pieces apply 1 tea sp lemon juice set a side then cut the other vegetables because apple changes it's color if you cut and leave it like that.
2. Mix all dressing ingredients in a big mixing bowl and whisk well to combine every thing.
3. Now add fruit and vegetable pieces to the dressing and mix gently to coat the dressing over the vegetable and fruit pieces.
Serve immediately. 

Source: plantain leaf(Andhra Recipes)

Mixed Vegetable And Olive Salad

Today's my salad is with crunchy vegetables and olives. I don't know why i like the flavor of olives in my salads so that i use a lot of olives in my salads. Actually i wanted to post Greek salad for today's post. I have every thing except feta cheese and Kalamata olives, I couldn't compromise. Greek salad is a traditional summer salad in Greek cuisine so i don't want to change the traditional recipe any way. I scratch my head for long time for today s salad recipe, because i planed for Greek salad and that idea was failed and i have to change my mind in the last movement. Finely some how i got this idea of mixing vegetables with olives. Believe me this salad is very refreshing and i like the taste too. Hope you all like this......


  • Carrot's --- 2 grated or cut in to long strips
  • Cucumber  ---  2 cut in to small bite size pieces
  • Cabbage  --- 1 cup cut in to small pieces
  • Capsicum  --- 1 cut in to small pieces
  • Lettuce  -- 6 leaves broke in to small pieces
  • Raisins   --- 2 tab sp Soaked in water for 10 minutes then drain the water.
  • Olives   ----  1/4 cup remove seeds, cut in to rounds ( green and black both you can use in this but i have only green so i used only green olives)
  • For dressing:---
  • Olive oil  --- 1 tab sp
  • Lemon juice   -- 1 tab sp
  • Black pepper  --- 1 tea sp crushed
  • Salt to taste
1. In a big mixing bowl mix all dressing ingredients and whisk well to conbine every thing.
2. Add all vegetable pieces, raisins to dressing and give a good toss.
3. Add olive pieces to salad and mix well gently and leave it in the fridge for 1 hour then serve chilled  with bread or roti.
You can use this salad as sandwich filling or a kati roll filling good idea no:).

Source: plantain leaf(Andhra Recipes)

Granola - Strawberry Smoothie & Blueberry Yogurt

Finally , the summer seems to be here and suddenly we are craving for cooler things. The two ideas, a smoothie and a yogurt posted today were prepared to beat yesterday's heat. They use the store bought granola bars and yogurt and suit my BM theme of "Food prepared using ready made stuff".
Check what the other marathoners are cooking during BM#17.

Ingredients: (2 - 3 servings)
1 cup or 6 oz strawberry yogurt / Plain yogurt
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup strawberries, halved
1 small banana
2 granola bars (I used Nature Valley' Oats n Honey bars.)
Sugar or any sweetener if using plain yogurt

* Place yogurt, milk, fruits, 3/4th of the granola bars and sweetener if using in a blender. Blend until smooth.
* Pour into glasses. Crumble the remaining bars and sprinkle in each glass. Garnish with strawberry slices if desired. Serve immediately.

Blueberry Yogurt

Another cool snack idea for these sultry days. Though I am not a yogurt - granola parfait eating person, a fruity yogurt sprinkled with a small quantity of nuts and crumbled granola bar is appealing to me. Here is blueberry Greek yogurt sprinkled with almond and crumbled granola.
Either get blueberry yogurt from the store or prepare your own. Using Greek yogurt is the shortcut version but straining the yogurt in the refrigerator for a few hours will also give the same results. For each cup of Greek yogurt, pulse about 2 Tbsp of blueberries coarsely. Add crushed berries and sweetener to the yogurt and stir. 4 - 6 fresh berries can be added as well. Sprinkle with nuts and granola bar pieces if desired and serve immediately.

Source: Veggie Platter 

Oats - Masoor Dal Bisibele Huli

The second week of BM#17 starts from today and I am going with "cooking with ready made stuff" theme. I did not have to go beyond my utility room (literally) for inspiration this time. I have a large utility room which doubles up as my second pantry or a mini grocery store as my mother calls it. We (particularly my husband ) know no boundaries when it comes to grocery shopping and keep stocking stuff as if there is going to be an emergency soon. My husband is very well versed with quality and price of the ingredients but goes overboard when it comes to the quantity. Result? My pantry and refrigerator are filled with loads and loads of grains, beans, dairy, veggies, fruits, snacks and so on enough to feed a crowd and to shock any newcomers to our home. :)

At any given time, I will also have a huge carton full of MTR instant mixes of all kinds. Not that I need instant mixes or use them enthusiastically but my husband feels that they will come handy during time crunches. For the first day post, I made use of MTR's bisibelebhath powder to prepare bisibele huli using oats and masoor dal for a quick and healthy lunch.
If you are bored to eat the mushy, bland oatmeal but would like to incorporate it into your diet, here is a spicy oatmeal preparation. This doesn't need even a pressure cooker as masoor dal cooks quickly and this comforting, one pot meal can be put together in around 20 minutes.

Ingredients: (3 - 4 servings)
  • 1/2 cup masoor dal
  • 1/2 cup old fashioned oats (Dry toast oats until they start to change color.)
  • 1 to 1.5 cup chopped veggies (I used carrots, beans, potatoes and peas.)
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 - 3 Tbsp MTR bisibele bhath powder or homemade BBB powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 Tbsp thick tamarind juice
  • For tadka: 2 Tbsp ghee, 1 tsp mustard seeds, 1 Tbsp cashews and few curry leaves

* Wash masoor dal in two exchanges of water. Add washed masoor dal, prepared vegetables, turmeric powder and about 5 cups of water to a pan and cook until masoor dal is done. It will take around 15 minutes.
* When masoor dal is cooked, add bisibele bhath powder, salt, tamarind and oats. Continue to simmer until oats are cooked through.
* In the mean while, heat ghee in a small pan and toast the tadka ingredients. When cashews turn golden brown, remove and add to the cooked oats - dal mixture and mix well.
Serve warm with papad / chips / khara boondi.

Source : Veggie Platter

Mcqueen Car Mole Cake


Ingredients :
For the sponge :
  1. Egg whites ( medium ) - 4 nos
  2. Butter - 125 g
  3. Sugar - 125 g
  4. Vanilla essence - 1 tsp
  5. Egg yolks - 4 nos
  6. All purpose flour - 50 g
  7. Cocoa powder - 10 g
  8. Baking powder - 4 tsp
  9. Ground hazelnuts - 75 g
  10. Grated dark chocolate - 100 g
For the fillings :
  1. 1 jar cherries (drained weight 350 g)
  2. Medium bananas - 2 noa
  3. Lemon juice - 2 tbsp
  4. Chilled whipping cream - 600 g
  5. Icing Sugar - 25 g
  6. Vanilla essence - 1 tsp

Method :
1.   Grease & line up the baking pan with the parchment paper.  Preheat the oven about 180 C.
2.   Beat the egg whites so stiff.  Whisk the butter in a mixing bowl until soft.  Sir in the sugar, vanilla essence & whisk in the egg yolks one by one.
3.   Mix together the flour, cocoa powder & baking powder.  Stir in the hazelnuts and grated chocolate and whisk in two installments.  Then carefully fold in the beaten egg whites and whisk briefly.
4.   Transfer the mixture to the baking pan & bake it for 30 mins.  Allow it to cool completely.  
5.   Make a circular incision on the surface with knife to leave an edge 1-2 cm in wide all round.  Then, using a tablespoon, hollow out the cooled cake within the circle to a depth of about 1 cm.  Crumble the cake remains you have just hollowed out into a bowl.
6.   To make the filling, drain the cherries thoroughly, then put them on a kitchen paper.  Peel the bananas, cut in half lengthways, sprinkle with lemon juice and arrange in the hallowed-out cake.  Distribute the cherries in between the bananas.
7.   Whip the cream with the sugar and vanilla essence until stiff.  Spoon over the fruit to form a dome and sprinkle the crumbled remains of the cake on top.  Put the cake in the refrigerator for about 1 hour & then decorate it accordingly.

Happy baking :)
Source : Cooking with Swapna

Rainbow Chard Bhaaji

I use Rainbow Chard regularly in my American kitchen. It's easily available at the supermarket. It is very beautiful to look at as each leaf has a different color. and most importantly, this leafy greens does not have any strong, unique flavor or rough texture. So it can be used in any recipe without any issue. I was planning to make bhaaji very similar to Shepu chi bhaaji that I had blogged earlier. However, as all homecooks know, we change, twist, tweak the recipes based on the ingredients available in the pantry. So I changed this recipe very slightly. You can follow exactly same recipe as Shepu chi bhaaji for a variation.

Rainbow Chard chi Bhaaji
1 bunch rainbow chard, rinsed, chopped
1/4 cup yellow moong daal, soaked for 2-3 hours
salt to taste
2 tbsp roasted unsalted peanuts powder/daaNyache kooT
1 tbsp roasted sesame powder (Optional)

2 tsp oil
1/4 cup chopped red onion
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1. Soak moong daal for 2-3 hours. Drain.
2. Heat oil in a saucepan/kadai. Add garlic. Saute for 1 minute. Add onion and turmeric powder. Saute till onion is soft.
3. Now add drained moong daal. Saute for 2 minutes.
4. Add chopped chard. Stir fry. Sprinkle some water drops.
5. Cover with a lid. Pour water on the lid. Let it cook. Check from time to time to make sure that the bhaaji is not sticking to the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle few drops of water if needed to prevent burning or sticking.
6. When bhaaji is cooked and wilted, add peanut powder, salt and sesame powder if using.
7. Saute till there is no water. Serve hot with chapati or bhakri.

Note -
1. Every moong daal grain should be seen and it should not be a mush.
2. Regular red or green chard can also be used. I prefer rainbow chard since it has many colors.

Source: Enjoy Indian Food

Papaya and Melon Salad

I like to have Salad as my meal for a day... yes Salads are my favorite. Once upon a time salads are consider as a diet food, which is low fat and taste less. Even today i know many people still thinking like that (my husband is one among them he don't like salads). But to day salads are among the ultimate health food. They can contain an exciting verity of colorful ingredients like fresh fruits and vegetables. And delicious ingredients like cheese, olive oil, lemon juice, honey mayonnaise. Only thing you have to find out which combination will go with the ingredients, in my view this is an art. I believe that a simple and fresh salad help you to take the stress out. in salads there is a wide verity of dishes in that array fruit salads are generally served as dessert salads with whipped cream, gelatin and honey dressing. today i am going to share with you a fruit salad which is very healthy refreshing and energy giving one. Here i go with the recipe....
In this recipe i used fresh cherry s, today morning i saw fresh Cherry's in the market I couldn't stop my self  buying them, i picked some of them so i add them to my salad. You can replace them with black or green grapes. But don't use any caned fruits they don't give fresh flavor to the salad.
pappaya and melon salad  
  •  Cantaloupe ( muskmelon or rock melon, Karbuja)  -- 1 small peel and cut in to bite size pieces
  • Papaya  ----   1 small peel and cut in to bite size pieces.
  • Raisins  -- 1/4 cup means 50 gms
  • Cherries --- 10 or grapes 10
  • For dressing:--
  • Ginger  -- 1/2 inch piece finely chopped or you can use a tea sp of fresh ginger juice
  • Honey --- 1 tab sp
  • Lemon juice  -- 1 tab sp
  • Few mint leaves for garnishing
1. In a bowl mix dressing ingredients mix well.
2. Add fruits pieces to the dressing keep a side few cherries to garnish, toss well.
3. Serve chilled garnished with cherries and mint leaves.

Source: plantain leaf(Andhra Recipes)

Poha - Coconut Halwa

My husband started throwing me options when I went to him to get some ideas for this week's marathon. His suggestions however made me suspect whether he was really serious or gone delirious with his work load. He had flown from his work the previous night, worked way past midnight and was up in the morning again with his laptop on.  And so instead of arguing over trivial matters and getting preached on how I refuse to see beyond my mother's kitchen, I walked out of the room and began thinking about it.
Among the ones, a few seemed feasible like this poha one. My husband had claimed that he had eaten it somewhere but I wasn't  sure whether he was joking or serious. However I tried it since the idea of poha halwa seemed appealing. I loved it and it is a simple and quick option when you are looking for some yummy stuff to satisfy your sweet tooth.

  • 2 Tbsp ghee
  • 1 Tbsp each - raisins & cashews
  • 1 cup thick poha / beaten rice flakes
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup fresh shredded coconut (I used sweetened coconut flakes.)
  • 2 Tbsp sugar (I used about 1 & 1/2 Tbsp as I used sweetened coconut.)
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder
  • A pinch of food color (optional)

* Melt the ghee in a pan and add raisins - cashews to it. Toast until the raisins become plump and cashews turn golden brown. Remove them with  a slotted spoon and keep them aside.
* To the same ghee, add poha and toast on low flame until it starts to change color. Transfer the poha to a plate.
* Add milk to the same pan and heat. Then add the food color, toasted poha and coconut and cook on low flame until poha is done.
* Next add sugar and cardamom to the poha. Continue to cook until the sugar gets dissolved and incorporated into the mixture.
* Turn off the stove and add the cashews and raisins toasted earlier to the halwa and mix well.
* Serve warm.

Source:Veggie Platter

Malabar Chicken Biryani

I've always been fond of thalassery biryani and ever since I wanted to give a try. Finally I've got a chance last week to cook  cos I finally landed on one youtube demo , learned from one of the video. The steps were so simple and as always, when made the taste was mild, fragrant and delish.It's such an easy dish ,u can whip it off in half an hour. And it's already an another add on in my menu list now.
Ingredients :

For Chicken masala :
Chicken -- 3/4 kg
Ginger garlic paste -- 2tsp
Green chillies,minced -- 2 tsp (acc to taste)
Mint leaves -- 1/2 cup
Coriander leaves -- 1/2 cup
Garam masala -- 3/4 tsp
Salt -- to taste
Onions -- ghee fried , around a cup
Tomatoes -- 2 nos. medium
Basmati Rice -- 2 cups
Lemon juice -- half a lemon
Mint leaves -- half a cup ,washed n cleaned
Coriander leaves -- half a cup ,washed n cleaned

For rice :
Ghee -- 1 tbsp
Cloves,cardamom,cinnamon,bay leaves,cumin seeds -- each 2 nos.
Cashews ,raisins -- each 2 tbsp ,roasted in ghee 
Rose water -- 2 tsp

For garnishing :
Onions -- 5 nos ,julienne 
Ghee -- 3 tbsp
Saffron -- few strands
Milk -- 2 tbsp

Method :
  • Heat a biryani pan with 3 tbsp ghee and fry the sliced onions till they golden brown. Remove from the ghee and spread it on a plate lined in a kitchen tissue. Fry the cashews n raisins in the remaining ghee and keep it separately.
  • In the same ghee ,add the chopped tomatoes along with lil bit of salt and cook till they break down and get cooked. Add the ginger garlic paste and saute for 2 minutes in medium flame.Throw in the minced green chillies and mix well for a minute.
  • Add the chicken pieces once the green chillies started changing colour and cook in the masala for few seconds. Add a cup of water to the chicken masala and combine well. Sprinkle the mint leaves on top ,cover with a lid  and cook for 7 to 8 minutes.
  • Open the pan , add a cup of ghee fried onions to the chicken ,clsoe the pan with th lid and gain cook for 2 minutes.Later, switch off the flame and add the garam masala powder ,coriander leaves and lemon juice and combine thoroughly .
Now making rice :
  •  Soak the basmati rice for 30 minutes.
  • Boil 8 cups of water with a tbsp of ghee/oil added along with cinnamon,cumin,cardamom,bay leaves and add the soaked rice. Cook the rice to almost 80 % ,now at this stage add in the rose water to the rice and mix well. Again cook the rice till it's 90% done..            
Layering the rice :
  • Keep the chicken masala mixture over medium low flame as we are going to make 2 process simultaneously. 
  • Now drain the rice completely and layer the chicken masala with the cooked rice,spreading evenly.
  • Top it with the remaining fried onions, cashews and raisins.
  • Finally sprinkle the saffron milk ( dissolve few strands of saffron in warm milk ,rest for 10 minutes earlier) across and close the pan with a lid . Keep some heavy weight on top of the lid and cook over low flame (dum) for 10 minutes /until it's done. 
  • Carefully mix the rice and serve with chicken ghee roast.
Happy eating guys,

Sorakaya Bajjilu - Boottle Gourd Fitters

I am not a big fan of snacks but my husband like to eat snacks other then main course. Bajji's (fitters) are one of the favorite snack for him but not mirchi bajji( green chilli fitters). He likes other vegetable bajjis like onion, brinjal, ridge gourd and bottle gourd. My favorite is mirchi bajji's..
 I never saw my MIL making bajji's but she makes onion pakodi's so very well. My mother used to make bajjis with almost all vegetables and she make a slit on bajjis and stuff them with chopped onion and coriander leaves .I like that way to eat bajjis.
Here to day I made bajjis with bottle gourd but you can make with any other vegetable like potato, onion, brinjal, ridge gourd, raw plantain, green leaves like palak and vamu aaku ( I don't know the name for this leaf in english), cauliflower, baby corn, capsicum.
Here is the recipe for Bajji's

  •  Bottle gourd--- 1 peeled and cut in to rounds
    Chick pea flour --- 1 cup
  • Ginger and green chilli paste  --- 1 tea sp
  • Ajwain(carom seeds) --- 1/2 tea sp
  • Red chilli powder --- 1/2 tea sp
  • Rice flour -- 1 tab sp
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil for frying


1.  Peal outer skin of bottle gourd ,wash and cut in to rounds make sure that seeds should not be there. If you find seeds cut in to half circles and remove the seeds.

2.  Mix chick pea flour,ajwain, ginger and green chilli paste,  chilli powder,salt to taste rice flour in a bowl add some water and make a batter for bajji's

3. In the mean while  heat oil in a deep frying pan, dip bottle gourd pieces in the chick pea flour batter and drop in to the hot oil and fry till golden color

 4.  Remove from oil and serve with tomato sauce or green chuteny and also you can serve with dal chaval and this bajji's.

Source: plantain leaf

Bread Halwa

From this month, the marathon is going to be for 4 weeks - each one with 3 days of posting. And so, this edition of marathon seemed like a breeze and it's time already for the final post for the first week of BM#17. 
It's bread halwa's turn today under "Kheer / Halwa" theme. Like poori payasam, this is a dish I haven't made it in years though couldn't figure out why. :)) It is easy and can be prepared at a moment's notice besides being yummy. I should say the kind I prefer. :)

  • 12 bread slices ( I usually go with brown bread. This time however I have used white one and hence I think the color of halwa was lighter.)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup ghee
  • 3 - 4 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder
  • Nuts to garnish

* Remove the crusts from the bread slices and cut the bread into small pieces. Toast them in the ghee until golden brown and keep them aside. 
* Heat the milk in a pan. Add sugar and cardamom and wait until sugar dissolves. Add the bread pieces and cook on low flame until they get cooked and incorporated into the milk. Turn off the stove and garnish with nuts.
* This can be served either warm or chilled.

Freeze the crusts instead of trashing and when you have collected a substantial amount, just process them to prepare your own bread crumbs.

Source : Veggie Platter

Ruta Kahate's Quick-Fix Indian - A Book Review

When Barbara @Andrews McMeal Publications asked me if I would like to review a new Indian book "Quick-Fix Indian: Easy, Exotic Dishes in 30 Minutes or Less by Ruta Kahate, I accepted the offer very happily. After all, I love to read cookbooks like storybooks. They are even my own bedtime books. So I was happy to receive a new book. In a few weeks, I received the book by mail.

Ms. Ruta Kahate is a best selling author of "5 spices, 50 dishes". She ran a cooking school in california. She loved to make everything from scratch. But when her two daughters were born , she wanted to tweak the recipes and make them simpler. That's when she discovered her own shortcuts and convenient techniques.  Ruta provides a shopping list for a well stocked pantry for a busy homecook.

All the recipes of this book are quick and easy to follow (Instant Biryani, anyone?) Of course Ruta admits that this isn't 2 minute Biryani recipe but the overall time is substantially reduced and hence it's relatively "instant".

I tried her pickled cucumber recipe which we enjoyed.

If you ask me what I had wished more from this book? then my answer would be some colored photographs would have made this book more vibrant.

Pickled Cucumber Salad
From Quick Fix Indian - Easy, Exotic dishes in 30 minutes or less by Ruta Kahate
2 medium cucumbers, peeled
2 medium carrots, peeled
2 medium green Serrano chilies, deseeded, chopped into thin rounds
1 tbsp minced cilantro
3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 tsp sugar

1. Slice cucumbers and carrots in thin rounds
2. Mix all the ingredients using your fingers.
3. Let it sit in the refrigerator at least for 10 minutes before serving.

Quick Fix Indian - Easy, Exotic dishes in 30 minutes or les by Ruta Kahate

Source: Enjoy Indian Food

Sinful Spinach Pizza

Planing to invite a few friends for a pizza party, you can surprise them with this pizza.This delicious homemade pizza with some delicious toppings with prebought pizza base can make your party grow wild.Who said a perfect pizza has to have italian flavors,I have experimented with indian flavors ... it has a exceptional taste that will make your taste buds dance.So enjoy the recipe and celebrate your pizza party

Ingredients :

Palak/Spinach Sauce
  • 2 cups tightly packed spinach
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onions
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp kasuri methi
  • 1 tsp dhania/coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tsp chopped garlic
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp finely chopped green chilli
  • 1/4 tsp cummin/jeera seeds
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • salt to taste
  •  1/2 cup paneer cubes (1/2 inch paneer)
  • 1/2 cup sliced mushroom
  • 1/4 cup boiled sweetcorn
  • 1 tsp kasuri methi
  • 1/4 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp chilli flakes
  • 1/4 tsp chat masala
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
  • 4 pan size pizza base
Take a bowl and mix all the ingredient in toppings and let it marinate for 20 minutes.Boil the spinach for 2 minutes in microwave and make a puree out of it.

To make sauce heat oil in the pan add cummin seeds and when it splutters add onion and garlic, and let it fry till onion becomes translucent. Then add ginger garlic paste fry for another 1 min, then add tomatoes till they become soft. Add all the masalas and fry till begins to saturate. Now add spinach puree and let it boil for 5 min on medium flame.Add kasuri methi cook for a minute and switch off the flame.
To prepare the pizza , spread the sauce on the pizza base, sprinkle mozzarella cheese, add the toppings and grill it for 8-9 minutes.Your pizza is ready to eat.
Source:Super Yummy Recipes

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