Monday, 28 December 2009

Falafel (Repost)

Preparation time: 25 min | Cooking time: 15 min

This is a repost to participate in the WYF-Tea time snack event.

This is a famous Lebanese delicacy. It can be savoured as a snack or rolled up into a sandwich with a salad.

Dry chick peas-1cup
Parsley-1 bunch
Coriander leaves-1/2 bunch
Whole cumin seeds-1tbsp
Cumin powder-1tbsp
Coriander powder-1tbsp
Whole coriander-1tbsp
Black pepper-1tsp
Mixed spices(optional)-1/4tsp
Oil for frying
Salt to taste

Soak the chick peas overnight, drain and wash well. Add chopped parsley, coriander leaves, onions, salt and black pepper. Mix them well and blend it in a food processor to form a coarse mixture. Now add rest of the ingredients and keep it in the refrigerator for about an hour. Divide and shape the mixture into small balls and flatten with your hand. Deep fry until brown. Serve it warm.

Note: Mixed spice is a mixture of traditional 7 spices that is available in the supermarkets.

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Season's Greetings

Wishing everyone peace and prosperity in the coming year.

Happy blogging and have a wonderful holiday!! :-)

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Kodubale and Awards

Preparation time: 15 mns | Cooking time: 45 mins

This is a snack from Karnataka. I've had this numerous times but I have never tried making it myself. Traditionally it is made into larger rings but the smaller format is widely available.

Rice flour-2cups
All-purpose flour (maida)-1/2cup
Dry coconut(copra) or desiccated coconut-1/2cup
Fried gram powder (pottukadala)-2tsp
Red chilli powder-1tbsp
Sesame seeds-2tsp
Asafoetida-a pinch
Salt to taste
Oil for deep fry

Fry all-purpose flour and coconut slightly for few minutes. Then add the rice flour, fried gram powder, red chilli powder, asafoetida, sesame seeds and salt and mix well. Heat oil and add to the mixture. Add enough water to make a dough. Knead well. Pull out small balls from the dough and roll them into strands of desired size with your hands. Moist your hands and join one end to the other to form a circle. Heat oil in a kadai. Drop the kodubales into the oil and fry on low-medium heat. They are done when they turn golden-brown in color. It usually takes about 8-10 mins. Remove from oil and drain on paper towels. Store in air-tight containers after they cool down.

Now here comes the awards.

Malar shared this award with me. Thank you. It means a lot to me.

Ally gave me this award. Thank you very much.

The comments by my blogger friends are a great encouragement for me. I would like to share these awards with all of them. Please feel free to collect & post them in your blog :-).

Sunday, 20 December 2009

Mutton fry (Kerala style)

Preparation time: 15 mins | Cooking time: 45 mins

Mutton (clean and cut into small pieces)-1/2 kg
Ginger-1" piece
Garlic-6 cloves
Turmeric powder-1/2 tsp
Curry leaves-2 sprigs
Coconut(cut into small bits)-1/2 Cup
Coriander powder-3 tsp
Chilly powder-1 tsp
Pepper corns-8
Cinnamon-1" stick
Coconut oil-2 tbsp
Salt to taste

Add about 1 tbsp oil, turmeric powder, coconut bits and a few curry leaves to the mutton, mix well and keep it aside.

Dry roast coriander powder, chilly powder, pepper corns, cinnamon and cloves and grind it to a paste along with ginger and garlic. Now mix this paste with the mutton mixture, add salt and cook until mutton is soft.( Add very little water, if cooking in a pressure cooker).

Heat oil in a pan, add the mutton with the remaining curry leaves and fry until they are dry.

Friday, 18 December 2009

Potato fry

Preparation time: 15 mins | Cooking time: 45 mins

Potatoes-4 medium
Chilli flakes-1tsp
Cumin seeds-½tsp
Fennel seeds-½tsp
Crushed coriander seeds-½tsp
Onion (sliced)-1
Curry leaves-2 sprigs
Chopped fresh coriander-1tbsp
Salt to taste

Boil the potatoes in salted water until soft but still firm. Remove from the skin and cut into small cubes.

Heat oil in a pan, then add the chilli flakes, cumin, fennel and coriander seeds and salt and fry for 2 mins. Add the sliced onion and fry until golden brown. Then add the potatoes, curry leaves and fresh coriander.

Cover and cook for 5-7 minutes over a low heat. Serve hot. This goes very well with curd rice.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Palada Pradhaman

Cooking time: 90 mins

Palada pradhaman is from our native Kerala. It is a famous payasam made from cooked flakes of rice, milk and sugar. This is served as a dessert after a sadhya (feast in malayalam). It is pretty easy to make but need a little patience for the milk to condense :-) My kids love the payasam and so, often visits my menu.


Rice ada-200gms
Whole milk-3ltrs
Sugar-500gms (can be varied as per taste)
Cashew nuts-few
Cardamom -3

Cook the adas as per instructions on the packet. It may differ for each. I soaked it in hot water for 20 mins and then rinsed in cold water, so that they do not stick to each other. Keep it aside.

Now in a heavy bottom vessel, boil the milk until it reduces and gets a light pink colour. Now add the adas and cook on a slow flame for about 15 mins and then add the sugar, mix well and cook until the desired consistency.(It will get thicker when cold, so do not make it too thick). Add the powdered cardamom. Heat ghee in a pan, fry the cashews and raisins till golden and add to the payasam.

Note: If the adas are big, you can put it in a mixer and crush it a little.

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Butter naan with chicken kurma

All purpose flour(Maida)-250 gm
Low fat yogurt -2tbsp
Warm water-2tbsp
Active dry yeast-1tsp
Salt as per taste
Baking soda/baking powder-1/2 tsp

Dissolve yeast along with sugar in lukewarm water and leave it for 5-10 mins for the yeast to be frothy. Mix the dry ingredients (maida, baking soda and salt ). To this add milk, yeast, oil, yogurt and knead it well until you get a very soft dough(add water if needed). It will be very sticky initially but by continuous kneading and by adding very little flour, it will become non sticky. Do not add more flour because naan will become hard.

Keep the dough covered with a damp cloth for 4 hrs(better to keep it in a warm place), by then it would be double in volume. Knead the dough and divide into equal portions. Flatten and mould into typical 'pear' shape naan.
Preheat oven to 450F/230C and bake for 10 mins. Brush with butter and serve.


Heat an iron griddle on the stove and transfer the naan onto the griddle. Wait until it starts to bubble on the top side. Cook the other side in flame and brush it with butter.

Serve hot with your favourite gravy.

Preparation time: 25 mins | Cooking time: 60 mins

Chicken Kurma
Chicken (cut into small pieces)-750gms
Ginger-1 1/2"piece
Garlic-5 to 6 cloves
Low fat yogurt-1/2 cup
Chili powder-2tsp
Coriander powder-2tsp
Turmeric powder-1/2tsp
Grated coconut-1/2cup
Pepper corns-10
Cinnamon-1" stick
Fennel seeds (saunf)-1/2tsp
Cashew nuts/almonds-10 to 15
Coriander leaves for garnishing
Salt to taste

Blend ginger, garlic and yogurt to a fine paste. Heat oil in a pan and fry the onions until golden brown. Add the yogurt paste to the onions and fry till brown. Add chili powder, coriander powder and turmeric powder. Fry for 2 more minutes. Add the tomatoes and fry for another 4-5 minutes. Add chicken and salt. Cook under low flame for 40-45 minutes or till the chicken is cooked by covering the pan. While the chicken is being cooked, blend coconut, cloves, pepper, cinnamon, fennel and nuts to a fine paste. Add the above paste to the cooked chicken and bring to a boil. Garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves.

This dish tastes good even without cashews or almonds. I have added them just to give a creamy texture to the gravy and enhance the flavour.

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Chole tikki

Preparation time: 60 mins | Cooking time: 45 mins

Chole tikki are flavourful potato patties smothered with a sauce made with chick peas. It is then garnished with sweet and spicy chutneys, sev, onions and fresh coriander leaves. Chole tikki, sometimes called aloo tikki chaat, is a street favorite in Mumbai.

For the chole
Chick peas (kabuli chana)-1 1/2cups
Ginger-garlic paste-1tsp
Coriander-cumin seed powder-1tbsp
Chilli powder-2tsp
Garam masala-1tsp
Turmeric powder-1/4tsp
Tomato (chopped)-1
Salt to taste

For the Tikkies
Bread crumbs-1/2cup
Garam masala-1/2tsp
Cumin powder-1/4tsp
Coriander powder-1/4tsp
Corn flour (Adjust acc to requirement)-1tbsp
Oil for frying
Salt to taste

For the chole
Wash and soak the channa overnight. Cook it until done in a pressure cooker. Heat oil in a pan add chopped onions and saute until light brown in colour. Add the ginger-garlic paste and saute for another 2 minutes. Now add all the dry masalas and saute until they lose their raw smell. At this stage add the tomatoes and cook until everything blends well.

Add the cooked channa to this mixture and cook for about 5 to 10 minutes. Additional water may be added to get desired consistency.

For the tikkies
Cook potatoes till tender, peel and mash well. Mix in garam masala, cumin powder, coriander powder, salt to taste, corn flour, bread crumbs and combine well. Adjust the corn flour as per requirement as it helps in holding the shape of the tikkies while frying. Make a small lemon sized balls and press them down. Shape them into round or oval shape (about 1 cm thick round or oval tikkies).

Heat tawa/griddle and place tikkies on it. Add about 1 tsp of oil for each tikkies and fry them on medium to low heat on both the sides till they turn golden brown. Repeat till you have cooked all the tikkies and place them in a kitchen towels to remove excess oil. Alternatively you can also bake the tikkies till they turn gold and crisp on both the sides.

To serve
Place 2 to 3 tikkies in a serving dish. Garnish with coriander chutney or mint chutney, tamarind chutney, sev, chopped onions and coriander leaves.

I've not used the chutney's instead replaced them with youghurt, ketchup and sprinkled a little chaat masala.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Mushroom Dopyaza

Preparation time: 20 mins | Cooking time: 30 mins

Garlic-4 cloves
Turmeric powder-a pinch
Chilli powder-1tsp
Coriander powder-1 1/2 tsp
Garam masala powder-1/2 tsp
Coriander leaves-to garnish
Fresh Cream-1tbsp
Salt to taste

Cut the mushroom into quarters. Make a paste of half the onions & garlic cloves. Heat oil in a pan & stir fry the onion-garlic paste till pink. Add turmeric, chilli, coriander powder & salt. Sprinkle 1 tbsp water & fry the masala mixture. Add chopped tomatoes and stir fry till tomatoes are tender. Add mushrooms & rest of the chopped onions, mix well and cover the pan with lid and cook till onions are soft. Open the lid and sprinkle garam masala and fold in the cream. Garnish with coriander leaves.

It is a good accompaniment with any Indian bread.

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Kariveppila chicken (chicken with curry leaves)

Preparation time: 15 mins | Cooking time: 45 mins

As the name suggests, curry leaves dominates all other ingredients :). This was introduced to me by my cousin and she made it so simple with just chilli powder, salt and curry leaves. It was very tasty. The curry leaves brings out its flavour to this dish. In order to add a little punch to this, I made my own version.

Chicken (cut into medium pieces)-1kg
Ginger-garlic paste-2tsp
Coriander powder-2tsp
Chilli powder-2tsp
Turmeric powder-1/4tsp
Garam masala powder-1tsp
Curry leaves-6 to 7 sprigs
Oil(preferably coconut oil)-5tbsp
Salt to taste

Marinate the chicken with ginger-garlic paste, all dry masalas and half of the curry leaves for about 2 hrs. Heat about 1tbsp oil in a pan(preferably one with a larger circumference, this would help chicken cook evenly), add the chicken along with the marinade and cook (do not add water).

When the chicken is half done, add the rest of the curry leaves with the remaining oil and cook until the chicken is brown on all sides.

Thursday, 3 December 2009

Mutta avial (Kerala egg delicacy)

Preparation time: 40 minutes | Cooking time: 30 minutes

This is indeed a Kerala dish but not found in all part of Kerala. It is more famous in the southern and central parts. I got introduced to this dish only after my wedding. In my recipe I've cut the eggs in such a way that the yolk is not disturbed. This is a better option otherwise the yolk will get mixed with the gravy.


Hard boiled eggs (cut lengthwise)- 5
Boiled potato (cut lengthwise)-1 medium
Grated Coconut-2cups
Cumin seeds-2tsp
Red Chilli powder-1tsp
Turmeric powder-1/4tsp
Green chillies-2
Curry leaves-2sprigs
Coconut Oil-2tbsp
Salt to taste

Make a coarse paste of coconut, turmeric powder, garlic, shallots, cumin seeds and green chillies. Keep it aside.

Take about 1tbsp oil in a pan, add the drumsticks(slit it length wise and cut into 4-5 pieces), a few curry leaves and the chilli powder, saute for 2 mins. Add a little water and let it cook. Once the drumsticks are almost done add the potato, tomato and the ground coconut paste, adjust the salt. When the gravy starts to boil, add the egg pieces, mix carefully and cook on slow flame, add some water if needed. When everything is blend well , turn off the flame, add the remaining coconut oil and the curry leaves. Keep it closed until you serve.

This goes well with rice and chappati.

Note: Traditionally this dish is cooked in mann chatti (earthenware) to bring out the authenticity.

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Pav bhaji

Preparation Time: 15 mins | Cooking Time: 20 mins

This is a spicy blend of vegetables in tomato gravy served with pav that is cooked with butter. I used the normal white bread rolls instead of the actual pavs.

For the pav
Pavs (small squares of white bread)-8

For the bhaji
Potatoes(boiled and mashed-1 1/2cups
Cauliflower(finely chopped)-1cup
Green peas-1/2cup
Capsicum(finely chopped)-1/2cup
Tomatoes(chopped)-2 1/2cups
Turmeric powder-1/2tsp
Chilli powder-1tsp
Pav bhaji masala-1 1/2tbsp
Ginger-garlic paste-2tsp
Butter or oil-4tbsp

For serving
Large onion(chopped)-1
Lemon wedges-4
Chopped coriander-1 tbsp

For the bhaji
Boil the cauliflower, peas and carrots till they are soft. Drain out the excess water. Heat the butter or oil in a large pan, add the onion and capsicum and saute for 2 minutes. Then, add the ginger-garlic paste and saute till the onion softens. Add the tomatoes and simmer till the oil separates. Add the turmeric powder, chilli powder, pav bhaji masala and salt and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the boiled vegetables and potatoes and mash thoroughly using a potato masher, adding ½ cup of water if required.

For the pav
Slice each pav horizontally. Apply a little butter to each side. Heat a large tava and cook the pav on both sides till the pieces are lightly browned.

Serve the hot pav with hot bhaji topped with the onion & coriander, and lemon wedges.

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Aloo palak

Preparation time: 30 mins | Cooking time: 30 mins

Chopped spinach-3cups
Onion(finely chopped)-2big
Potatoes(boiled and peeled)-2big
Green chillies-2
Ginger-1" piece
Lemon juice-1tsp
Red chilli powder-1tsp
Cinnamon-clove powder-1tsp
Turmeric powder-1/4tsp
Cumin seeds-1/2tsp
Garam masala-1/2tsp
Salt to taste

Put the washed spinach in a pan, add very little water (just sprinkle) and a pinch of salt. Cover and boil over a high flame for 2 minutes. Cool quickly, or hold under running water in a colander.
In a mixie, make a coarse paste of the spinach & green chillies. Keep aside. Cut the potatoes into big pieces. Heat oil and fry potatoes till light brown. Drain the potatoes, keep aside. In the same hot oil add the cumin seeds. When they start to splutter add the chopped ginger, onions and fry till very tender. Add the tomato and further fry for 2 minutes. Add all the dry masalas and fry till oil separates. Add spinach and potatoes. Boil for 10 mins . Add lemon juice and mix well. Serve hot with naan or parathas or even rice.

Note: You can add the potatoes without frying too, in doing so add them to the onion mixture, saute for about for 5 mins and then add the spinach puree.

Friday, 27 November 2009


Preparation time: 30 mins | Cooking time: 45 mins

During tea time there's always an array of questions about snacks. This prompted me to prepare something that is easy to make. Easy in the sense, no moulds or special gadgets :-). It stays fresh for over a week when stored in an air tight container. Karnataka is the origin of this recipe. It may be called with different names in other states of India. My kids are not fond of nuts, so I haven't used it though the recipe demands it.

Rice flour-1 1/2cup
Roasted and coarsely powdered groundnuts-100gms
Fried gram(pottukadala) powdered coarsely-50gms
Cumin seeds-1/2tsp
White sesame seeds(till seeds)-1tbsp
Red chilli powder-2tsp
Hing(asafoetida powder)-a pinch
Hot oil-2tbsp
Salt to taste
Oil to deep fry

To the dry flours add hot oil, salt, hing, chilli powder and mix well. Add rest of the ingredients, mix well, add water and knead to form a stiff but pliable dough. Take a heaped teaspoon full of the dough and roll it into a tight ball between the palms of your hands. Grease a sheet of plastic/butter paper and flatten out the ball to form a round disc of about 3 inches diameter. Prick the disc with a fork, to prevent it from puffing up while frying. Deep fry in hot oil. Flip once or twice in between and fry until golden brown.

Note: You can also do with
Maida-2 cup
Rice powder-1 cup
Rice powder-1 cup
Urad dal powder-2 tsp

and rest of the ingredients are the same

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Parippu (moong dal curry)

Preparation time: 10 mins | Cooking time: 30 mins

This needs no introduction to Keralites, as this is the first dish served as a main course for any
sadya (Kerala feast). There are various versions of the curry. I was introduced to this one only after my marriage.

Moong dal-1 cup
Turmeric powder-1 tsp
Cumin seeds -1tsp
Garlic clove-1
Fresh coconut(grated) or Desiccated coconut-1/2cup
Curry leaves-a few
Salt to taste

Dry roast the moong dal on medium heat for ten minutes. Cook it with sufficient water and turmeric. Grind the coconut with a little water and cumin seeds. Add to the boiling dal along with the curry leaves and salt. Cook for about 5 minutes and it is ready to relish with rice, ghee & pappadam.

Monday, 23 November 2009

Chicken satay with crunchy peanut sauce

Preparation Time : 1 hour | Cooking Time : 20 minutes

This is a Thai dish which is not very spicy. I've had this a couple of times in restaurants and always wanted to make one myself. It is a very good starter. At home the kids usually enjoy it without the sauce though these both go hand in hand.


Chicken breasts(boneless)-4
Fresh red chillies(chopped)-1
Soy sauce-2tbsp
Thai fish sauce- 2 tsps
Lemon juice-1 tsp
Garlic (crushed)-4 cloves
Ginger (crushed)-1 inch piece
Brown sugar-2 tsps
Salt to taste

For sauce
Peanut butter-3tbsp
Onion (chopped)-1small
Ginger (crushed)-1/2inch piece
Garlic (crushed)-4cloves
Soy sauce-1tbsp
Coconut milk-4tbsp
Lemon juice-1tbsp
Oil- 1tbsp
Salt to taste

First slice each chicken breast horizontally so that you have two thinner slices and then cut each of these into three or four strips lengthways.

Take the chicken strips in a bowl. Add salt, soy sauce, Thai fish sauce, lemon juice and mix. Add garlic, ginger, brown sugar and honey and mix. Let it marinate for an hour preferably in the refrigerator.(The more the better)

Heat oil in a griddle plate. Thread the marinated chicken strips onto satay sticks and place on the griddle plate. Pour some of the excess marinade over the chicken and cook. Turn the satay stick on the griddle to cook the other side.

For the peanut sauce heat oil in a pan, add the onion and saute. Add ginger and garlic to the onion in the pan and continue to saute. Add soy sauce, peanut butter and two tbsp of water. Mix and add coconut milk, lemon juice, salt and honey. Add fresh red chilli and mix. Take the peanut sauce off the heat.
Serve the satay with the sauce immediately.

Note: The sticks have to be immersed in water for about 15mins before cooking. You can also cook this without the satay sticks.

Friday, 20 November 2009

Chettinad mushroom gravy

Preparation time: 30 mins | Cooking time: 30 mins

I had a craving for some spicy dish. As most of you all know 'chettinad' recipes are known for its hot & spicy flavour, I opted this dish.

Mushroom- 250gms
Ginger-a small piece
Garlic-3 cloves
Turmeric powder-1/4tsp
Curry leaves-a few
Coriander leaves-a few
Bay leaf-1
Salt to taste

Spice mixture
Dry red chillies-2
Coriander seeds-3tsp
Cumin seeds-1/2tsp
Fennel seeds-1/2tsp
Pepper corns-1tsp
Poppy seeds-1tsp
Split roasted gram(pottukadala)-1tsp
Cinnamon-1 small stick
Dessicated/fresh coconut-3tsp

Dry roast all the ingredients under spice mixture taking care they don't get over burnt. Saute the onions, ginger & garlic with 2 tsp oil until soft. Now make a paste of the spice mixture and sauteed onion mixture. Keep it aside.

Heat some oil in a pan, add the curry leaves and bay leaf. After 2 mins add the cleaned & sliced mushroom, turmeric powder and saute for 5 mins. Now add the ground paste and saute until they are brown in colour. Add chopped tomatoes, salt and cook until the oil separates. Add a little water and cook for 10 mins on slow flame. Mix in the chopped coriander leaves.

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Vegetable casserole

Preparation time: 20 minutes | Cooking time: 30-40 minutes

Kids usually do not favour vegetables, but if you try to do something fancy with it, they somehow relish it. :-) This is one such recipe my kids love. I've used the vegetables of their liking. You could substitute it with any of your choice.

Mixed vegetables-500gms
(Cauliflower, mushroom, carrot, green peas & corn kernels)
Garlic-5 cloves
Mixed herbs-1tsp
Olive oil-1tbsp
Pepper corns -1tsp
Cream cheese-4tbsp
Shredded cheddar cheese-1cup
Salt to taste

Buttered Bread Crumbs:
Fine ground bread crumbs-1cup

Preheat the oven to 220 degrees.
Heat oil in a pan, add the crushed garlic and saute for 5 mins. Add cauliflower, a little salt and cook . Slowly add one after the other vegetables, see to that they are not overcooked(they have to be crunchy) . Add the herbs, crushed pepper and salt if needed, mix well. Place in a baking dish.

In a medium saucepan, over low heat, combine 2 tablespoons flour and 2 tablespoons butter until it makes a smooth paste. Stirring constantly, slowly add 1 cup milk and bring to boil to make a medium thick white sauce. Flavour with salt and pepper powder. Remove the white sauce from the stove and stir in the cream cheese. Stir until the cream cheese is melted and smooth without lumps.

Pour this mixture over the vegetables and stir together. Sprinkle the shredded cheddar cheese over the top of the vegetables.

In the microwave or in a small saucepan, melt 2 tbsp of butter and stir in the bread crumbs. Sprinkle the buttered bread crumbs over the top of the vegetable casserole.
Bake at 220 degrees until hot and bubbly, about 30-40 minutes.

Note: For best results serve it hot.

Layered Vegetable Casserole on Foodista

Saturday, 14 November 2009

Creamy mushroom

Preparation time: 20 mins | Cooking time: 30 mins

Mushroom is our staple diet :-) or should I say the most frequent item in my menu. They are also easily available over here and all of us like it a lot. At times I end up preparing something with whatever ingredients I have at home. This is one such recipe. To say the least, it was indeed a good one and so thought of sharing it with you all.

Ginger-garlic paste-1 tsp
Green chillies-2
Tomato puree-2 tbsp
Yogurt-1 tbsp
Coriander powder-1 tsp
Garam masala- a pinch
Fresh cream-2 tbsp
Coriander leaves(chopped)-2 tsp
Salt to taste
Oil-1 tbsp

Cut mushrooms into pieces. Make a paste of green chillies, ginger-garlic paste & yogurt, now marinate mushroom in this paste for about 10 minutes.
Heat oil in a pan, add the chopped onions and saute till they turn light brown in colour. Add the coriander and fry for 2 minutes. Now add the mushroom along with the marinade and saute for 5 minutes. Add the tomato puree and cook until it starts to boil. Now add a little water and cook till the mushrooms are done. At this stage add the cream, sprinkle the garam masala and cook for about 2 minutes.

Garnish it with coriander leaves. This goes well with Indian breads.

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Chocolate swirl cream cake

Preparation time: 25 mins | Cooking time: 60 mins

It was my younger son's birthday. He is very choosy when it comes to food. He likes cake but there are conditions behind it. :-) icing, no fruits or nuts etc. I thought of taking the opportunity to make a cream topping cake. I didn't have any prior experience but then thought..."what the hell....there is always a first time :-)". The decorations are as per his liking. I only wrote his short name on the cake as I wasn't so sure I could write all of it, instead I used the 'happy birthday' candles. In the end result wasn't that bad as I thought. My son was very happy which is by far the greatest compliment. :-)

Self raising flour-300gms
Vanilla essence-2tsp
Baking powder-2tsp
Cocoa powder-2tsp
Canned pineapple-small tin
Heavy cream-300ml.

Put the baking tin onto a sheet of greaseproof paper and draw around it. Cut out the shape and grease the tin with a little butter, then put the cut paper inside the tin. Grease the paper and set the oven to 180C/350F or gas mark 4. Sift the flour and baking powder into a mixing bowl. Add the butter, sugar and eggs to the bowl and mix until they are thick and creamy. Add the vanilla essence and mix well. Remove 6 tbsp of batter and place in a smaller bowl. Pour the remaining batter into the tin. Add the cocoa powder into the reserved batter and stir well with a fork. Drop the chocolate mixture in spoonfuls randomly onto the batter in the tin and using a knife swirl the chocolate mixture through the cake mix. Put the tin in the oven and bake the cake for 40-50 minutes. When the cake is cooked, take it out of the oven and leave it in the tin for 5 minutes. Turn the cake out and peel off the greaseproof paper, turn the cake over and leave it to cool.

Cut the cake in half horizontally. Drain pineapples and reserve the syrup. Beat cream in a bowl until stiff. Put the bottom cake layer on a board. Spoon the syrup over the layer (just to make it a little wet), spread the cream, now place the pineapple pieces to form a layer. Then place the other half on top. Spread a layer of whipped cream over top layer and the sides of the cake. Chill until ready to serve.

Note: Dip the knife in hot water at regular intervals while spreading the cream.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

Yamy yamy potato egg delight

Preparation time: 15 mins | Cooking time: 40 mins

Don't be startled by the long name of the dish. Its a fairly simple and quick recipe. It is one of my mother-in-law's collection of recipes which she found from one of the publications. This would get into the favourites of many, even the kids as it is a non-spicy and a creamy dish.

Onion-1 big
Ginger-a small piece
Cinnamon stick-1inch
Coriander powder-1tsp
Chilly powder-1 1/2tsp
Pepper powder-1/4tsp
Tomato puree (thick concentrate)-3tbsp
French fries for serving
Fresh cream-100ml
Coriander leaves to garnish
Salt to taste

Beat the eggs well with a little salt and pepper powder and keep aside.

Make a paste of onion, ginger, garlic & whole garam masalas.

Heat oil in a pan, saute this paste until oil separates. Now add coriander powder and chilli powder and saute for about 2 minutes. Add tomato puree, salt and cook for about 5 minutes. Now add a little water (1/2 cup) and allow it to boil. At this stage pour the beaten eggs slowly, stirring continuously so that no lumps are formed and cook until the eggs are done. Finally add the cream and cook for about 5 minutes. Garnish with coriander leaves.

To Serve
Spread a few fries on the serving bowl, pour the gravy on top and add a few more fries on top. This actually enhances the taste of the dish. The curry goes well with any indian bread. Enjoy!!!!!

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Egg molee (poached egg curry)

Preparation time: 15 mins | Cooking time: 20 mins

Eggs are usually prepared in different ways. This dish seemed new to me and I thought I'd give it a go. I made a few variations to suit our taste and in the end the curry tasted really nice. I thought I'd share it with all of you.

Onion (finely sliced)- 2
Ginger (chopped)-a small piece
Garlic (chopped)-3 cloves
Green chillies (slit)- 4
Coriander powder-1/2 tsp
Garam masala- 1/4 tsp
Thin coconut milk-50 ml
Thick coconut milk-50 ml
Curry leaves-a few
Oil - 3 tbsp(preferably coconut oil)
Salt to taste

Heat oil in a pan. Add onion, ginger, garlic, green chillies and curry leaves and fry, till they become soft. Add coriander powder, garam masala and salt. Add the thin coconut milk and allow it to boil. When it starts boiling, break the eggs into it one by one, without disturbing the other and cover it with a lid to set. Once the eggs are cooked, add thick coconut milk. Simmer for 2-3 mins.

This goes well with chapathi, parotta and appam.

I thank Sangeetha for passing on the awards.

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Cabbage Thoran

Preparation time: 15 mins | Cooking time: 15 mins

Thoran does not need any introduction to malayalees because it is one of the most common dishes. Having said that the dish has its variations as you travel across Kerala. Thoran is one of the main dish in any sadya (feast) and 9 out of 10 times the vegetable used is cabbage.

Grated coconut or desiccated coconut-1cup
Green chillies-3
Cumin seeds-1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder-1/2 tsp
Mustard seeds-1/2 tsp
Curry leaves-few
Oil-1 tbsp
Salt to taste

Heat oil in a pan. Splutter the mustard seeds, then add the curry leaves & the chopped onions, saute for 2 mins. Now add the finely chopped cabbage, salt & turmeric powder and mix well. Close with a lid & cook( do not add water). Make a coarse paste of coconut, cumin seeds and green chillies without water and add this to the cabbage, mix well. Cook on a low flame until done.

(Cabbage should never be overcooked, it tastes good when it is slightly crunchy). This goes well with rice & sambar.

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Sausage rice

Preparation time: 15 mins | Cooking time: 20 mins

My greatest dilemma is to decide what to pack for lunch for my family. I think a few of you might share my problem :-). This recipe is ideal for it because it is quick and easy at the same time taste is not compromised.


Sausages or frankfurters (cut in small pieces)-12
Basmati rice- 2 cups
Chicken cube(stock)-1
Garam masala-2 tsps
Red chilli powder -2 tsps
Coriander powder-3tsps
Garlic ginger paste-2 tsps
Soya sauce-2 tsps
Coriander leaves(chopped)-1 tbsp
Mint leaves(chopped)-1 tbsp
Oil-3 tbsp
Salt for taste

In a cooker, fry the onions in oil. Once the onions are translucent, add the garam masala, coriander powder, red chilli powder, garlic-ginger paste, soya sauce, chicken cube, coriander leaves, mint leaves and let it fry for a minute on slow flame. Add the frankfurters to this, mix the ingredients and fry again for a minute. Wash the rice, add to the frankfurters mixture and mix again. Add 3 cups of boiling water and salt. Close the lid and cook. Turn off the gas after 1 whistle. Let the cooker cool on its own for 10 minutes. Open, mix everything again and serve hot with raita.

Friday, 30 October 2009

Carrot payasam (kheer)

Preparation time: 10 mins | Cooking time: 60 mins

Oct-Nov is a birthday season in my home. My elder son's birthday falls just a few days after my husbands. I had made a few special dishes and my son kept reminding me of his and the long list of items he wanted on his birthday. He is a payasam lover and I prepared his favourite.


Milk-5 cups
Ghee-1 tbsp
Cashew nuts-10 to 15

Boil 4 cups of milk in a heavy bottom vessel(preferably nonstick). Cook on slow flame stirring constantly till it reduces to 3/4 of the quantity. Grate 2 carrots, saute this in ghee until all the water from it evaporates. Now add this to the milk and cook until the carrot is soft.

In another vessel boil the remaining carrots & cashew nuts with 1 cup milk until done, cool it and grind it to a paste. Add this paste along with the milk to the above cooked carrot milk mixture and mix well. Now add sugar, cardamom powder and cook on slow flame until it blends well and is of semi-thick consistency.( Payasam well get thicker when it gets cool, so adjust the consistency accordingly). Tastes good when served cold.

Garnish with roasted cashew nuts and raisins.

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Cabbage Erissery

Preparation time: 20 min | Cooking time: 20 min

Erissery is an authentic Kerala recipe. This is made with different vegetables like yellow pumpkin, yam & drumstick leaves. I prepared using cabbage though it is not the traditional way of cooking this dish.


Tuvar dal -5tbsp
Chopped cabbage-2 cups
Grated coconut-1 cup
Cumin seeds-1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder-1/4 tsp
Chilli powder-1 tsp
Mustard seeds-1/4 tsp
Red chillies-2
Curry leaves- a few
Salt to taste
Coconut oil-1 tbsp( preferably)

Cook the dal until soft. Add the chopped cabbage, salt, turmeric and chilli powder to this and cook on slow flame. Keep about 2 tbsp grated coconut aside for tempering and now make a fine paste of the remaining coconut and the cumin seeds. Add this paste to the cabbage dal mixture, mix well and cook for about 15 mins.

Heat oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds , curry leaves & red chillies, when they start to splutter, add the grated coconut and fry until it turns light brown in colour. Add this tempering to the curry and mix well.

This coconut tempering adds the flavour to the curry. This goes well with rice and chapathi.

Monday, 26 October 2009

Chicken badami

This is an exotic dish which I learnt from my mother-in-law. It would serve as an ideal dish for any party. It reminds me of my brother-in-law because it is his favourite and relishes it to the last drop (in the literal sense :-))


Onions(medium)- 3
Yogurt-4 tbsp
Ginger garlic paste- 2 tsp
Kashmiri chilli powder-3 tsp
Turmeric powder-1/2 tsp
Almonds( badam)-20
Cinnamon- 2 small sticks
Chopped coriander leaves- 1 tbsp
Oil-3 tbsp
Salt to taste

Clean the chicken well and cut them into medium pieces. Marinate this with turmeric and yoghurt for about 3 to 4 hours.

Heat oil in a vessel, add all the whole garam masalas. When they splutter add the finely sliced onions and saute until light brown in colour. Add the ginger garlic paste and fry for 2 mins. Add the chilli powder and fry until it loses its raw smell. Now add the chicken along with the marinade, mix well and saute for about 5 mins. At this stage add the blanched & chopped tomatoes, mix well and cook along with a little water until the chicken is 3/4th done. Now add the fine paste of blanched almonds to this , cook on slow flame taking care that it does not stick to the bottom of the vessel. When the chicken is done, garnish it with chopped coriander leaves. Serve it with any Indian bread or ghee rice. Enjoy!!!

Note: Blanching is the process of immersing a fruit or a vegetable in boiling water for a short interval. In this recipe I have blanched the tomatoes and almonds which helps to remove the skins easily.

Now the accolades.....
I am very happy to receive this appreciation from Sushma which is a great encouragement for me. Thank you Sushma and all the rest of my visitors for your valuable comments. They matter a lot to me.

I would like to pass on this award to Sangeetha & Preeti.

Monday, 19 October 2009

Mutton Biryani

Preparation time: 40 mins | Cooking time: 60 mins

My 50th post :-)......

This blog is special to me for 2 reasons. First of all I'm completing half a century with this recipe, thanks to all my blogger friends for their encouragement and all the silent visitors who have dropped by. The second reason is-I cooked this for my husband's birthday, as it is the best among his favourites. :-)


For Gravy
Green chillies-3
Coriander powder-3tsp
Chilli powder-1tsp
Garam masala-1/2tsp
Turmeric powder-1/4tsp
Coriander leaves(chopped)-3tbsp
Mint leaves(chopped)-2tbsp
Salt to taste

For rice
Basmati rice-400gms (2cups)
Bay leaves-2
Cinnamon-2, 1inch stick
Water-3 1/2cups
Salt to taste

For layering
Onion (cut into rings)-1
Cashew nuts-a few
Coriander leaves(chopped)-1tbsp
Mint leaves(chopped)-1tbsp
Garam masala-1/2tsp
Lime juice-2tbsp

Clean the mutton and cut them into medium size pieces. Make a paste of ginger, garlic & green chillies and marinate the mutton in this mixture for about an hour.

Heat oil in a pan, add thinly sliced onions and saute until they are light brown in colour. Now add the mutton along with the marinade and fry until it slightly changes colour. Add all the dry masalas and fry for about 5 minutes. Add chopped tomatoes and cook until everything is blend well. Add the yoghurt, coriander & mint leaves to this. Adjust the salt and add a little water if needed, cook till the mutton is well done. The gravy should be of thick consistency.

Wash the rice well and soak for about 20 minutes, drain and keep aside. Boil water in a heavy bottom vessel. Add the whole garam masalas, ghee and salt. Now add the rice and cook on medium flame until the rice is done.

Layering and dum
Deep fry the onion rings in oil until golden brown and fry the cashews in ghee until light brown.

Smear the vessel(heavy bottom) with ghee. First add a layer of rice, top it with the mutton along with the gravy. Sprinkle some garam masala, lime juice, coriander leaves, mint leaves and the fried onions on top. Add another layer of rice and the secret lies here. Make sure that you press the rice well so that the flavour of the mutton mixes well with the rice. Repeat the same for another layer of mutton followed by rice. Finally add the fried cashews, onions and the coriander, mint leaves. Close the vessel with a tight lid or with an aluminium foil and keep it over a large pan and cook on slow flame for about 30 minutes. You may add water in the pan so that it does not get over heated. This procedure is to dum the biryani.

It should be served with raitha, papadom and lime pickle.

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Fruit surprise

Preparation time: 20 mins

This is a very simple one, a mixture of custard and fruits. I presented it in another way so that the kids would relish it.

Fresh cream-1/2cup

Heat a sauce pan, add sugar, when it starts to melt add the chopped apple, toss it well, then add the sliced bananas, mix well and keep it aside.

Now mix the cream and the custard together. Beat well until it is thick and creamy.

To Serve
Add the fruits to the serving bowl, then top it with the custard mixture. It tastes best when it is chilled.

Cheese cake

Preparation time: 30 mins

October is a month of celebration for us. Three men of my family have their birthdays. I wanted to make a cheese cake since a long time and I thought my hubby's birthday would be the right occasion. He is anyway not very fond of payasam and other sweets.

Biscuits(choose the one that easily crumbles)-200 gms

Cream cheese-450-500gms
Cream-210 ml
Gelatin-7 tsp

Line a 17-18cm(7") sandwich tin with foil, ensuring that the foil overlaps the edges of the tin.
Melt the butter in a saucepan and stir in the crumbled biscuits, mix well.
Spread the crumb mixture over the base of the tin and press down with the back of a spoon. Chill in the fridge for 15 mins, until firm.

Add about 80ml of cold boiled water to gelatin. Let it sit for 1 hour. Then bring the gelatin to a boil, but do not keep boiling. Cool it. Beat the cheese with sugar. Add gelatin and mix well. Beat the cream separately.Combine the cheese with cream. Place this mixture over the biscuit base and smooth with the back of a spoon and place in the fridge for 3-4 hours.

Remove from the tin and peel away the foil. Keep refrigerated for not more than 2 days.

Decorations can vary as per taste. Here I've decorated with chocolate gratings and cherries.

Capsicum kichadi

Preparation time: 15mins | Cooking time: 15mins

Kitchadi is one of the dishes made for Kerala sadya(feast). This is not a traditional one but can be substituted for it. The preperation is slightly different and I often go for it whenever I'm short of ingredients ;-).

Green chillies-2
Mustard seeds-1/4tsp
Red chillies-2
Curry leaves-few
Salt to taste

Chop the capsicum into small pieces and deep fry until they slightly change colour. Deep fry the chopped green chillies too and keep it aside.

Beat the yoghurt along with the salt. Add the fried capsicum and green chillies into it.

Heat 2tsp oil in a pan, add mustard seeds, red chillies and curry leaves. When the mustard seeds splutter, add this to the capsicum mixture and serve immediately.

Jamaican jerked chicken

Cooking time: 60 min

Jerk is a style of cooking native to Jamaica in which meats are dry-rubbed or marinated with a very hot spice mixture called Jamaican jerk spice. I combined a couple of recipes to suit our taste. It has spices different from our Indian counterpart but it is no less in taste.

Onions(roughly chopped)-2
Red chillies (seeded and roughly chopped)-3
Garlic cloves-2
Ginger-1small 4cm piece
Allspice powder-½ tsp
Cinnamon-1small stick
Cider vinegar-100ml
Light soya sauce-100ml
Honey-1tbsp (optional)
Black pepper
Salt to taste

Place the onions, chillies, garlic, ginger,cinnamon, nutmeg and thyme in a food processor and grind until well blended. Add the allspice, vinegar, soy sauce and honey(optional) and mix again until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Deeply slash the chicken quarters and place them in a large shallow dish. Pour over the sauce and chill for 2-3 hours or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 200C. Transfer the chicken to a rack and sit it inside a roasting tin. Pour over any marinade from the dish and roast for 40-45 minutes, basting occasionally with the marinade juices in the roasting tin, until the chicken is cooked through and blackened.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Carrot delight

Preparation time: 10 mins | Cooking time: 30 mins

My kids are on vacation and that demands for more desserts. That's when I explored into my collection to get a quick and simple one.

Medium carrot(grated)-4
Custard powder-3tbsp
Dried fruits(almonds, pistas, raisins)-a few

Mix the custard powder to one half of the milk and keep it aside.

Heat ghee in a sauce pan (preferably non-stick) and add the carrots. Saute until all the water evaporates. Add about 2tbsp sugar and stir until slightly caramelised. Now add the other half of the milk to this along with the dried fruits and cook on low flame. When the milk evaporates add the custard powder mixture into this and continue cooking on low flame stirring constantly. When it thickens add the remaining sugar and mix well.

It tastes best when served cold.

Sangeetha of Kothiyavanu has given me these sets of awards.....Thank you so much dear and it is a great encouragement for me.

Crispy chicken wings

Cooking time: 60 mins

A very easy recipe and one our favourites. It can either be oil fried or baked. I took the healthier route ;-).

Chicken wings-4
Chilli powder-1/2tsp
Ginger-Garlic paste-1tsp
Lemon juice-1tsp
Bread crumbs
Salt to taste

Marinate the chicken with egg, salt, ginger-garlic paste & chilli powder for about 4-5 hours.

Roll on breadcrumbs and place them in an ovenproof dish greased with oil. Spray some oil over the chicken.

Pre-heat the oven to 220c. Bake the chicken for about 45 min turning it over once until they are golden brown.