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February 23, 2011


PHIRNI, a famous North Indian dessert is usually made with rice soaked & grind to a smooth paste.For a change i tried with rice flour suggested by MB in her cookbook. Its very easy to make and tasted great .Its a very good replacement for Payasam .Usually Phirni looks thick. I made it little thin as per our taste.Please make it as u need.I have updated this recipe as per the suggestions given by an anonymous reader...If u want to make badam phirni, soak few badams in water , blanch & chop them finely. Add the chopped badam at the end after switching off the flame.I used badam just to garnish.


  • Milk – 1/2 litre ( around 2 cups )
  • Rice flour – 3/4 tbsp
  • Sugar – 1/2 cup
  • Cardamom powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Cashewnuts , pista & badam – Few (finely chopped)
  • Rose water  or kewara - 1/2 tsp (for additional flavor , i dint use)
  • Mix rice flour in 1/2 cup of milk and without forming any lumps.
  • Heat rest of the milk in a heavy vessel.
  • When it starts to boil ,add the rice flour paste and cook stirring constantly.
  • It takes nearly 15-20 minutes to thicken . Keep the flame medium low - high to avoid spilling.Stir now & then..
  • When the milk becomes thick add sugar & switch off the flame..
  • Stir well till the sugar dissolves completely. Check for sweetness .
  • Mix cardamom powder , rose water & chill in refrigerator (* Do not freeze )
Serve in small cups with fried nuts on top !!
  • I made it slightly thin..Add milk if u want more diluted.Adjust sugar accordingly.
  • Thickening time of milk may vary according to the heat. 
  • U can add saffron soaked in warm milk instead of cardamom powder & name it as “ kesar phirni “
  • We can use fine chiroti rawa for thickening of milk instead of rice flour.
Phirni collage


  • Health benefits of milk include good bone health, robust skin, good immune system, prevention of illnesses such as hypertension, dental decay, dehydration, respiratory problems, obesity, osteoporosis and even some forms of cancer. The beneficial health nutrients obtained from milk are mandatory for human body and help in prevention of chronic ailments.
  • The nutritional value of milk have always influenced people all over the world to include it in diet. Addition of milk in your daily diet can also help in achieving a well-balanced diet. Milk is an ideal source of nutrients such as vitamin A & B, calcium, carbohydrate, phosphorous, magnesium, protein, zinc and riboflavin. The Teagasc Dairy Products Research Centre at Moorepark, Fermoy has reported recent research on the utility of milk in neutralizing cholesterol content in the body.
    Many animals do provide us with this vital health substance, but cow’s milk is considered the best wholesome supplement for children as well as adults. Milk of other animals buffalo, goat, sheep, camel, reindeer and yak. Milk of horse and donkey is also consumed by humans, though this is rare.
    The health benefits of milk can be achieved from milk directly or its products such as cheese, butter, curd, clarified butter or ghee, dairy whitener, ice cream, cottage cheese or paneer, flavored milk, milk sweets etc. The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has clearly mentioned in its Dietary Guidelines to include milk and milk products in the diet.
    Deficiency Symptoms: Milk deficiency can cause severe anemia, osteoporosis and other related illnesses. Milk consumption is very essential to maintain good health and doing normal activities. It is the best source of calcium for all age groups.
    Benefits: Milk is extremely beneficial drink for mankind. Some of the advantages of drinking this life-giving nectar are as follows:
    • Calcium: Milk is the best source of calcium supply to our body. Calcium protects the body from major chronic ailments such as cancerous chemicals, bone loss, arthritic condition, migraine headaches, pre-menstrual syndrome, and obesity in children and aids in losing unwanted fats.
    • Healthy Bones: As mentioned above, milk is rich in calcium, which is very essential for growth and proper development of strong bone structure. Bone disorders such as osteoporosis can be prevented with daily intake of adequate quantity of milk. Children deprived of cow milk have an increased chance of bone fractures when injured.
    • Healthy Teeth: Encouraging children and youngsters to drink milk would give them excellent dental health, as milk protects the enamel surface against acidic substances. Drinking milk for energy and health would dissuade children from consuming soft drinks, thus reducing the risk of decayed teeth and weak gums.
    • Rehydration: Fluids are an integral part of human body. The body needs to be replenished with liquids at regular intervals. It is very essential for growing children and they must drink at least six to eight glasses of fluid every day. Milk contains a good quantity of water molecules and is considered the best fluid for rehydration.
    • Skin Care: Have you heard of Cleopatra, the Queen of Nile? She was considered one of the most beautiful women of all times. Well you will be surprised if I tell you that Cleopatra used to have a milk bath daily! She used to mix honey and milk and take a bath daily enabling her maintain soft and beautiful skin. Since thousands of years, milk is known to benefit our skin by helping us maintain a fair and smooth complexion. Hence, even today milk and milk products are used in a number of cosmetic preparations. Milk is also good for dry skin. If you have a dry skin apply milk on your face (and other body parts), leave it for about 15 minutes and then wash it. The milk solids nourish and smoothen your skin. The lactic acid present in milk is known to aid in removing the dead skin cells, thereby rejuvenating your skin.
    • Improving Diet and Vitamin Intake: According to medical research, drinking milk considerably improves our intakes of vital minerals and vitamins. A man who consumes a carton of whole milk doubles his chances of fulfilling calcium requirement per day, whereas, another person consuming a can of fizzy or carbonated drink may in reality lower his calcium levels by one third percent.
    • Acidity Reduction: Consumption of milk products can also help in reducing acidity
    • Wholesome Food: It contains a whole lot of vitamins and minerals to keep you fit, healthy and strong. A glassful of milk contains vitamin A & B for good eyesight and increasing RBC count, carbohydrates for vitality and energy, potassium for proper nerve function, magnesium for muscular function, phosphorous for energy release, protein for body repair and growth.
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February 17, 2011



Though i have posted some pickles from my MIL’s hand , I feel this post is somewhat special as i made it on my own using less oil for first time.The result was completely satisfactory.Click here to see another healthy , quick side dish  for rice using gooseberry if u r interested..

gooseberry pickle 



  • Big gooseberry  - 12 nos
  • Red chillies – 8 –10 nos (Long variety , adjust )
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Asafetida / hing – 1/4 tsp
To dry roast
  • Methi seeds – 1 tsp

To temper

  • Cooking oil – 1.5 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds –1 tsp
  • Urad dal – 1/2 tsp
Sesame oil – 1 tbsp



  • Dry roast methi seeds in a kadai till it turns brown with a nice aroma.Powder it along with asafetida and turmeric powder.Set aside.
  • Grind the red chillies to a coarse powder. Keep aside.
  • In a pressure cooker or in an idly pot ,steam cook the whole big gooseberries without adding water.After it cools down ,cut the gooseberry into bite sized pieces .( It will come off easily when u press it with ur fingers.)
  • Then in a wide mouthed kadai add a tbsp of oil and temper the items given above.Add the gooseberry pieces and the coarse red chilly powder.
  • Mix well for few minutes till raw smell disappears.Add the salt and toss well.
  • After sometime , add the ground methi seeds mixture and mix well .
  • Make sure everything gets combined well.
  • Keep in medium flame for 2-3 minutes .Finally add the sesame oil , mix well.
  • Switch off the flame. Let the pickle cool down .
  • Transfer it to an air tight container.
  • Tastes best the next day !!

Enjoy with curd rice !!



Indian gooseberry, due to its high vitamin C content, is effective in controlling diabetes. It will also prevent eye complications in diabetics.
  1. It is useful in the treatment of respiratory disorders. It is especially effective in tuberculosis of the lungs, asthma and bronchitis.
  2. As an extremely rich source of vitamin C, it is a very effective remedy for scurvy.
  3. The juice of Indian gooseberry with honey is beneficial in presenting eye sight.
  4. It is a valuable remedy for enriching hair growth and pigmentation. The fruit, cut into pieces, is dried, preferably in the shade. These pieces are boiled in coconut oil till the solid matter becomes charred. This darkish oil is excellent in preventing graying. The water in which dried amla pieces are soaked overnight is also nourishing to hair and can be used for the last rinse while washing the hair.
  5. The dried fruit of Indian gooseberry is useful in diarrhoea and dysentery.
  6. Most important is it has revitalizing effects, as it contains an element which is very effective in preventing ageing and in maintaining strength in old age. It improves body resistance and protects the body against infection. It strengthens the heart, hair and different glands in the body.


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February 15, 2011

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February 10, 2011


When i was searching for recipes using left over idlies , i came across this kaima idly in sharmilee’s blog. I got attracted by this title & tried it on the same day.It was very nice.Thanku so much sharmilee :). Now i am posting this for my future reference.Sure kids would love this..


  • Left over idlies – 5 nos  ( cube cut )
  • Big onion – 1 no (finely chopped)
  • Tomato – 2 nos (-do-)
  • Green chilly - 1 no ( finely chopped)
  • Capsicum - 1/2 no
  • Red chilly powder– 1/2 tsp
  • Dhania powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Garam masala powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Salt  – As needed.
To temper :
  • Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
  • Urad dal – 1 tsp
  • Channa dal – 1 tsp
  • Curry leaves – a few
To garnish :
Coriander leaves - few

  • Heat a kadai with 2 tbsp of oil and  shallow fry the cube cut idly pieces.( u can also deep fry)Set aside.
  • In the same kadai, add a tbsp of oil and temper the items given above.
  • Now add the  chopped onion , saute well.Add green chilly ,curry leaves & capsicum pieces.Saute well.
  • Then add tomato pieces and saute till it becomes mushy.
  • Finally add  red chilly powder , turmeric powder , garam masala powder & salt. Mix well.
  • Now add the shallow fried idlies and toss well .
Garnish with coriander leaves and enjoy eating hot !!


In the actual recipe, the idlies are deep fried .But for health concern, i shallow fried the idlies.For kids , u can deep dry & do.So its ur choice of making it.
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February 4, 2011


I learnt this from my MIL. Its a very tasty one pot meal recipe.I usually make it for dinner.I use noi arisi ( broken rice ) to prepare this upma. Its available in all grocery stores. If u don’t get this rice, u can just break the raw rice by running in the mixie once or twice. No side dish is needed. It can be made in jiffy.Apt for bachelors and working women!

Puli upma

Puli upma recipe

Puli upma recipe Puli upma recipe using broken rice/Noi arisi
Cuisine: Indian
Category: Dinner
Serves: Serves 2-3
Prep time: 5 Minutes
Cook time: 15 Minutes
Total time: 20 Minutes


  • Broken rice / Noi – 1 cup
  • Tamarind - A big gooseberry size ( soak & extract )
  • Turmeric powder – A pinch
  • Salt – As needed.
  • Water – 2.5 cups
To temper
  • Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
  • Urad dal – 2 tsp
  • Channa dal-1.5 tsp
  • Curry leaves – A few
  • Red chillies – 4 nos ( adjust)
  • Hing / Asafetida – 3 - 4 pinches

  • In a cooker base, add oil and temper the mustard seeds followed by urad & chana dal , pinched red chillies & hing. In a bowl , soak the tamarind in warm water  for 10 mins and take the extract using 2.5 sups of water mentioned above. ( if u take the extract with 1 cup of water, add the remaining 1.5 cups of water as it is.)
  • Then add the tamarind extract to the cooker base and the turmeric powder & required salt. Add a dash of hing again. Add fresh curry leaves too. ( these two items adding at the end gives a spl flavor for this upma ) Now add the washed & drained rice into the cooker.
  • Mix it well & close the lid.Keep it for 10-15 mins or 3 – 4 whistles. Once the steam is released , serve it hot. U can make the same in rice cooker too. For rice cooker,u need to add 3-3.5 cups of water.Enjoy eating hot topped with sesame oil.



  • If u don’t have broken rice in hand,just grind the raw rice in mixie very coarsely. Run the mixie once or twice to break the rice.Then use as mentioned above.
  • Adjust the quantity of red chillies based on ur spice level.
  • Do not add more water than the mentioned quantity.Upma will become mushy.


Broken rice is probably the cheapest rice available. Broken rice is simply rice grains that are too small to make the minimum grain length standard. So, it is packaged separately and given an attractive, low price. It doesn't affect the taste at all.
The broken rice is widely used in the food preparations and in the industries for making flour and in the manufacture of baby foods. The starch extracted from broken rice finds wider application in the pharmaceutical, textile and other industries.


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