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May 9, 2013

ALOO PALAK | ALOO PALAK GRAVY RECIPE

aloo-palak recipe copy
Aloo palak is in my try list for a long time. I have blogged Restaurant style palak paneer and Sindhi style palak paneer recipes..So I thought of trying aloo palak by combining those 2 recipes. It came out very well. We loved it a lot..We relished it with chapati....

 aloo PALAK

INGREDIENTS
1 cup - 200ml
To saute
  • Palak leaves – 2 cups
  • Sugar – 1/4 tsp
  • Cooking oil – 1 tsp
To pressure cook
  • Boiled Potato – 2 nos (big)
To temper & saute
  • Cooking oil + ghee – 1 + 1 tbsp
  • Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • Crushed fennel seeds powder – 1/2 tsp  (optional)
  • Big onion – 2 nos
  • Ginger Garlic  paste – 1 tsp
  • Tomato -  2 nos
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Red chilli powder –  1 to1.5 tsp
  • Dhania powder – 1 tsp
  • Garam masala powder – 1 tsp
  • Crushed Kasuri methi – 1 tsp
  • Salt & water – As needed
  • Milk – 1/4 cup
To garnish
  • Fresh cream or milk skin (paal aadai) -  1 tbsp
  • Lemon juice – few drops

HOW TO MAKE ALOO PALAK
  • Pressure cook the potato and cube cut into small pieces.Set aside.Chop the onions finely and cut tomatoes into small pieces..
  • Wash the palak leaves..Heat a tsp of oil and saute the palak leaves till it shrinks and gets cooked. Add 1/4 tsp of sugar to retain the color of palak.Let it cool down completely. Then grind it to make a paste adding little water.
Aloo palak tile1
  • Heat oil in a kadai , temper cumin seeds , fennel seeds powder &  then add the onions , ginger garlic paste.. Saute till raw smell emanates.Then add the tomato pieces and saute till mushy.
Aloo palak tile2
  • Now add all the spice powders and mix well. Then add the palak paste , salt & saute for sometime in low flame.
Aloo palak tile3
  • Lastly add the potato pieces , mix well. Add the crushed kasoori methi , milk and mix well..
aloo palak tile4
  • Add a tbsp of fresh cream or milk skin (paal aadai) before serving..Add few drops of  lemon juice & serve !

aloo piece

Note : For variations u can try adding green chillies instead of red chilli powder. If u use green chillies , saute them along with palak , grind and add..

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May 8, 2013

MILK KULFI | PAAL ICE – ICE CREAM RECIPES


kulfi plate
As i mentioned in my Matka kulfi post , i love kulfi ice like anything.. Next to kesar kulfi , i love this milk kulfi (paal ice) ..When i was young I used to go to my granny’s place (Tirunelveli) for every summer vacation and i enjoy “cup ice , paal ice & kuchi ice ” buying from vendors selling in a small cart. Every time I buy two varieties , hold them in both the hands and lick them side by side..Winking smile..Ok, coming to this post , I took this recipe from Spice india online. This recipe has milk and condensed milk. In the actual recipe , the quantity of condensed milk is more.But i wanted to use less condensed milk. So i used little corn flour to give the thickness..One sad thing is i couldn’t bring pure white colored  ice cream .It was half white in color. The addition of condensed milk changed its color..But it tasted great..I was completely satisfied with the outcome Smile..Kids would love this sure. Even we adults won’t stop eating one Winking smile.Sen loved it a lot & asked for more , hehe..
paal ice cream

INGREDIENTS
  • Boiled Milk – 2.5 cups
  • Condensed milk – 1/2 cup
  • Corn flour – 3/4 tbsp
  • Sugar – 1 – 2 tbsp (adjust)
  • Vanilla essence – Few drops OR cardamom powder- 1/8 tsp
METHOD
  • Dilute corn flour adding little milk .
  • In a wide bowl , mix the boiled milk , condensed milk , sugar and diluted corn flour . Mix well till sugar dissolves.Boil this mixture for sometimes till the raw smell of corn flour emanates completely.. Mixture will also become slightly thick.Switch off the flame and add vanilla essence..
kulfi tile
  • Let it cool completely. Then fill in kulfi moulds ,cover it with a plate or silver foil and freeze it overnight or minimum of 4-6 hours..The next day , take the mould and keep it immersed in water for few seconds..Kulfi comes out easily.
  • Serve immediately.

kulfi-ice
NOTE
  • Adding condensed milk helps avoiding the ice crystals form while freezing. It gives a creamy texture..
  • In this recipe i used milk and condensed milk in the ratio of 5:1.So i added corn flour to bring the thickness and sugar to taste.
  • U can make this ice cream in a minute easily by just mixing the milk , condensed milk , vanilla essence and pour in kulfi mould directly without heating..But in this case , u should add milk & condensed milk in the ratio of 2:1..U don’t have to add corn flour & sugar ..
  • For making the same with kesar flavour , soak few threads of saffron in warm milk and add to the mixture instead of vanilla essence. It gives a natural yellow color to the kulfi..

kulfi pot


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May 6, 2013

MASALA RAVA KICHADI – BREAKFAST RECIPES


rava-kichdi

I got this masala rava kichadi recipe from my friend Megha.We used to talk more about food.She was telling me about this masala kichadi and gave me some to taste. I loved it a lot. I immediately noted down the recipe to try in my kitchen. Basically i am not a upma person Smile with tongue out..I don’t like rava based recipes but Sendhil loves it like anything. Just for him , I started trying varieties of rava recipes.Nowadays i too started liking it..This dish is the same as our usual rava kichadi and the only difference is the addition of masala like cinnamon , cloves and G&G paste.. Its a flavourful dish. It tasted great even after it cools down.I had the same for breakfast as well as lunch..The addition of oil & the water quantity gives the right consistency & taste... When u r bored of making our usual Rava kichadi , try this one. U’ll love it like me Smile .This kichadi has a mild masala smell which we both loved it ..Very soon i’ll post a No onion No garlic masala rava upma which i learnt from my neighbour ..

U may like to c

Soft idli using idli rava

Rava roti/ Sooji roti

masala rava kichdi

INGREDIENTS
1 cup - 200ml
  • Rava – 1 cup
  • Big onion – 1 no
  • Tomato – 1 no
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Water –   3.5 cups
  • Salt – As needed
To pressure cook
  • Carrot – 1 no
  • Potato – 1 no
  • Green peas – 1/4 cup
To grind
  • Green chillies – 3 nos ( add more if u want more spicy)
  • Ginger & Garlic paste – 1 tsp OR use 1 inch ginger , 6 garlic cloves
  • Cinnamon – 1 small piece
  • Cloves – 2 nos
  • Salt – little
To temper
  • Cooking oil – 2 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
  • Urad dal – 1 tsp
  • Channa dal – 1 tsp
  • Jeera – 1/2 tsp
  • Curry leaves – few
Ghee – 2 tsp
Coriander leaves – 1/4 bunch
Lemon juice – few drops

METHOD

  • Dry roast rava for 5-7 minutes in low flame without changing its color..Rava will be non-sticky after roasting..Set aside .. Coarse grind the ingredients given under “ to grind” to a coarse paste without adding water..( Adding salt helps to retain the color of chillies)
masala kichdi tile1
  • Pressure cook all the vegetables in high flame for one whistle. Drain  & reserve the excess water and set aside.Make sure vegetables should not be mushy..It should be cooked yet firm..
  • Now in a non stick kadai , heat oil & temper all the ingredients given above in the same order. After the dals turn golden brown add the finely chopped big onions & curry leaves.Saute well till onion turns transparent.. Then add the coarsely ground paste till u get a nice masala smell.Finally add the tomato and saute till mushy..
masala kichdi tile2
  • Now add the cooked vegetables and mix well..Then add the required quantity of water ( i used the vegetable broth + water  and added 3.5 cups in total). Now add the turmeric powder and salt and allow the water to boil for a minute.
masala kichdi tile3
  • When the water comes to roll boil ,simmer the flame completely and add rava slowly using one hand and stir the mixture simultaneously using the other hand.. Mix well and add 2 tsp of ghee,lemon juice , chopped coriander leaves & close the kadai with a lid .. Let it cook for 5-7 minutes in medium flame. Stir once or twice in the middle..
  • Now kichadi will be non–sticky to touch and it starts to roll in the pan leaving the sides .Make sure it is some moisture content in it.. Switch off the flame ..Scoop it in the plate. It will slide off from the scoop without sticking Smile..
masala kichdi tile4
Serve hot immediately with coconut chutney !


kichdi spoon copy

NOTE
  • Addition of oil and ghee gives a nice taste and flavour.So please add the above mentioned quantity to get a soft kichadi.
  • Here i have used less quantity of spices (cinnamon & cloves) which gives a mild masala smell. If u want to have more masala  try adding  1/2 tsp of garam masala powder..
  • Water content may vary from 3-3.5 cups based on the consistency u like..
  • Addition of tomato , lemon juice & coriander leaves is a must..

TRIED & TASTED BY READERS

My sister Radha tried this kichadi and shared this picture with me :)


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May 3, 2013

PUNJABI LUNCH MENU | NORTH INDIAN VEGETARIAN THALI RECIPES

PUNJABI LUNCH

Its been a long time I posted other state lunch recipes in my blog. So I tried this Punjabi lunch menu last weekend. After trying this Punjabi platter , I got tempted to try more North Indian vegetarian thali recipes as we loved this platter a lot. In this post, I have given the recipes of Amritsari aloo kulcha , dahi kadhi , Punjabi chole, jeera rice , restaurant style dal tadka and sweet lassi.. Everything came out very well even though its my first attempt. I forgot to keep a papad and pickle which makes it a complete punjabi lunch. Aloo kulcha tasted very soft and its the best kulcha I have ever had. Thanks to “The Hindu” food safari section from where I took this recipe. It was awesome in taste. For Punjabi chole and dal tadka, I referred veg recipes of india blog. For jeera rice, dahi kadhi and sweet lassi, I referred many blogs and made with some combinations. Its a very lengthy post, please excuse me.. I have given step by step pictures for some recipes. Please click on the title below to view a specific recipe.. Hope you’ll read , try and enjoy these recipes…

I took this recipe from “The Hindu” food safari section and this is a fool proof recipe. Actually kulchas look very thick and round. I have made it thin to suit my husband’s taste. It was very soft and delicious when served hot. I dint follow tandoori cooking. I just used my tawa to cook this kulcha. Cook the kulchas till golden brown and brush it with butter.

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 cups maida (All purpose flour)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 1/4 cup yogurt
  • 1/4 cup warm milk
  • 1/4 cup Warm Water
Butter – 2 tbsp ( for brushing the kulcha b4 serving)
For potato stuffing
  • 1 cup boiled and mashed potatoes ( use 3 potatoes)
  • 1 finely chopped green chilli
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala masala
  • 1/2 tsp crushed kasoori methi
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped coriander leaves


METHOD
  • Sieve the maida and then mix it with the baking soda, baking powder, oil, yogurt, sugar and salt in a bowl. Add the warm milk and knead into soft dough. Make sure to add the milk gradually.Mix well & add water slowly.Do not make the batter sticky.Cover the dough with a damp cloth and keep aside for an hour minimum.
punjabi kulcha tile1
  • For the Filling: Take mashed potatoes, chopped onions and green chillies, red chilly powder, cumin powder,garam masala masala , kasuri methi and coriander leaves in a bowl, mix everything and make medium sized balls and set aside.
punjabi kulcha tile3
  • Take out the dough, make a medium sized ball, flatten it and place the potato filling ball in the centre. Fold this ball again into a ball, with the filling at its centre, and dust the dough with flour. With a rolling pin, flatten this ball out into a thick disc.
punjabi kulcha tile2
punjabi kulcha tile4
  • Heat few drops of oil in a deep frying pan, and gently drop the flattened kulcha in the hot oil. Cook on both sides until the kulcha turns golden brown. punjabi kulcha tile5
  • The kulchas are ready to serve!!.Brush it well with butter …It can be served with raita & pickle or punjabi chole. But serve it hot !!

JEERA RICE


INGREDIENTS
  • 1 cup basmati/ jeera rice
  • 1 tsp shahjeera or caraway seeds (black jeera)
  • 1 green cardamom
  • 1 no star anise
  • 2-3 black peppercorns
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 no biryani leaf
  • 1 inch cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 2 cups water

METHOD
  • Soak basmati or jeera  rice for 30 minutes.
jeera rice tile1
  • In a pan , heat a tbsp of ghee , add the cinnamon , cardamom , cloves , mace biryani leaf , pepper corns and shah jeera..
jeera rice tile2
  • Roast them well and add to rice along with 2 cups of water and the required salt.
jeera rice tile3
  • Serve hot with dal !
PUNJABI CHOLE

Punjabi chole should be dry , I made it slightly watery to suit our taste.  Please adjust the consistency as per ur wish. I used amchur powder instead of anardana powder. I heard adding anardana powder gives the exact flavour of chole. Try with anardana/ pomegranate seeds powder if you have it.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans, Kabuli Chana .I used white chana..)
  • Tea bag - 1 no
  • 1 no cardamom
  • 1 no cinnamon
  • 2 medium sized onions chopped
  • 4 medium sized tomatoes chopped
  • 1 tsp ginger paste or coarsely ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala powder
  •   1 tsp chilly powder
  • 1 tsp amchur powder/dry mango powder OR anardana/pomegranate seeds powder
  • 2 slit green chillies
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • Salt & water – as needed

    Spices for the punjabi chole masala

  • 3-4 black cardamoms
  • 1 inch cinnamon
  • 5-6 peppercorns
  • 3 cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3/4 tsp tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
  • 1 and half tsp coriander seeds (dhania)
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds (saunf)
  • 2 red chillies

METHOD
  • Wash and soak the chickpeas  with a pinch of cooking soda in enough water overnight or 8 hours.In a pressure cooker take the soaked chickpeas, enough water, salt, tea bag , 1 elachi , 1 small cinnamon and pressure cook for 5-6 whistles till the chick peas soft..Remove the tea bag , elachi and cinnamon.Drain the excess water which is called broth..set aside.
  • In a pan, dry roast all the spices mentioned above till brown. On a slow or moderate flame you can roast the spices. Keep on tossing it otherwise they may get burnt.Once they are cooled, grind them into a fine powder.
punjabi chole tile1
  • In the same pan, add oil. Once the oil becomes hot, add the chopped onions. Fry till they become transparent.Now add the crushed ginger paste.Once the raw smell of the ginger disappears, add the chopped tomatoes and saute till tomato turns mushy.. Add little salt so that the tomatoes gets cooked fast.
punjabi chole tile2
  • Add the powdered spices to the mixture. Saute for a minute.Now add the boiled chickpeas with a little quantity of cooked water. You can add more broth if you want more gravy.
punjabi chole tile3
  • Check for salt and simmer the gravy for 10 minutes..Finally, add the amchur powder.Garnish with chopped onions and cilantro leaves.
punjabi chole tile4

Serve punjabi chole with rice,kulchas, bhaturas & rotis along with sliced onions and lime.
DAL TADKA
INGREDIENTS
  • 1/4 cup toor dal
  • 1/4 cup moong dal  OR masoor dal
  • 1 or 2 green chillies, chopped
  • 1 medium sized onion, chopped
  • 2 medium size tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tsp finely chopped ginger
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala powder (optional, i used it)
  • A pinch of asafoetida/hing
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 tsp crushed kasuri methi/dry fenugreek leaves
  • 1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
  • salt as required
To temper
  • 2 tbsp ghee or oil
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 5-6 garlic cloves crushed
  • 2-3 pinched red chillies
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • a generous pinch of hing

To garnish
Few chopped coriander leaves

METHOD
  • In a pressure cooker base take all the ingredients given above and cook it till the dal turns mushy.Open the cooker and mash everything well..Check for salt.
  • Now temper all the ingredients given under “ To temper” .. Add to dal. Garnish with coriander leaves and Serve hot topped with ghee !
punjabi dal tile1

I couldnt take step by step pictures for kadhi. I’ll update it soon..Its very easy to make. It tasted yummy..

INGREDIENTS

For the onion pakoras
  • 1 cup of besan /gram flour
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 medium sized onions( sliced )
  • 1/2 tsp ajwain/carom seeds
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala powder
  • a big pinch of asafoetida/hing
  • Salt
For kadhi
  • 2 cups of sour curd / yoghurt ( more sour curd , more tasty kadhi)
  • 1/4 cup besan/gram flour
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala powder
  • salt to taste
For tempering
  • 2 tbsp cooking oil
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds (optional)
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp methi seeds
  • 1 big onion (finely chopped)
  • 2 tsp crushed ginger and garlic pieces
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1 green chilli  ( slit)
  • 1 pinched red chillies
  • Big pinch of asafoetida
Coriander leaves – to garnish




METHOD
  • Beat the sour curd well with a whisk and all the ingredients given under “ for kadhi” to make a mixture. Add salt and water..
  • Now temper all the ingredients given under “ to temper” and saute well.. Then add the curd mixture and allow it to boil well. Be careful it will spill while boiling , so choose a big bowl and also simmer the flame. stand nearby and stir now and then. Simmer for 10-15 minutes until gravy becomes thick. Adjust the water if the gravy is thicker..
  • In the meantime , mix all the ingredients for pakoras and make a thick mixture. Deep fry them in batches and drop them in the dahi mixture. Boil for a few seconds and switch off the flame. Garnish with coriander leaves.
Serve with rice topped with ghee !


INGREDIENTS

  • Fresh thick chilled curd – 1 cup
  • Sugar – 1 tbsp (adjust)
  • Rose water or cardamom powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Malai or fresh cream – 1/2 tbsp (optional , i dint use)

METHOD
  • Take all the ingredients except malai and whip it well.. U’ll get a thick , frothy lassi. Serve it chilled adding malai on top !!. Garnish with saffron and nuts if necessary ..
Note: Add 1/4 cup of water , if u want to make the lassi slightly thin


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May 2, 2013

Thakkali Sambar - Instant Tomato Sambar Without Coconut, dal For Idli

  Tomato sambar without dal for idli

I learnt this instant tomato sambar recipe / Thakkali sambar for idli without dal and coconut from my mom. This is our family's all time favourite sambar. Its very simple to do and its made without cooked dal & coconut. Sambar onions, hing and coriander leaves are the star ingredients. This sambar should be served adding sesame oil / gingely oil. It gives a nice taste and flavour. So add gingely oil on top of sambar before you eat . I have used Bangalore tomatoes here. Please adjust the quantity of green chillies based on the Tamil nadu tomato you use. Try this easy, instant tomato sambar for idli, you’ll like it for sure. It tastes similar to tomato soup with sauteed onions ;)

If interested , check out  my

Tomato sambar with coconut for idli

Tomato brinjal sambar for idli

Spicy sambar for dosa  

Thakkali sambar without dal

Tomato sambar for Idli Without coconut, dal


Tomato sambar for Idli Tomato sambar / thakkali sambar without coconut, dal for idli dosa.
Cuisine: Indian
Category: Side dish
Serves: Serves 2-3
Prep time: 10 Minutes
Cook time: 20 Minutes
Total time: 30 Minutes


INGREDIENTS
1 cup - 250ml

  • Ripe Tomato – 5 nos
  • Green chilli – 5 -7 nos (Use 7 for spicy sambar)
  • Hing / Asafetida – 1/4 tsp
  • Turmeric powder – A pinch
  • Salt & water – as needed
To temper
  • Oil – 1.5 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
  • Urad dal – 1/2 tsp
  • Sambar onion – 3/4 - 1 cup ( finely chopped )
Coriander leaves – a quarter bunch chopped for garnishing (must)
METHOD
  • Heat a tsp of oil in a pan and saute the slitted green chillies for a while till the skin shrinks. Cook the tomato and the green chilli with required water and let it cool. It should be well cooked ( Usually My mom pressure cooks it)
  • Filter the cooked water and grind the tomato, green chillies to a smooth paste adding the cooked water after it cools down. Add salt , turmeric powder and 1/4 tsp of hing to the paste and set aside. Chop the onions finely.
tomato sambar tile 1
  • Heat 1.5 tbsp of oil in a kadai and season with mustard seeds and urad dal. Now add the chopped onions and saute till they are transparent. Add the cooked tomato water. Give a boil.. Finally add the ground paste and add the remaining water, salt.(This sambar should be slightly watery. )
Tomato sambar tile2

  • Sprinkle few chopped coriander leaves and give a boil. Switch off the flame and garnish with the remaining coriander leaves.
Tomato sambar tile3
    NB: Please don't try this sambar without coriander leaves. You wont get the exact flavour and taste. Also small onion gives a special flavour to this sambar. So we don't use big onions. Please don’t use curry leaves in this recipe. It will change the flavour of this sambar. Enjoy !


Tasty tomato sambar is ready to serve hot with idlis !! Top with sesame oil / Gingely oil.
It tastes divine !!!

Instant tomato sambar recipe



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