Sunday, July 24, 2011

Bitter Gourd Podi

Again this week end was busy with cooking session and ended up making 7 dishes (< last weekend).  Weekdays are more relaxing without cooking.                      
Bell Pepper Sambhar  - I froze a bowl of Sambhar for future use.                   
Paruppu Rasam                       
White Gourd More Kuzhambhu                       
Clustered beans Poriyal                       
Potato Kara curry                    
Bitter Gourd Podi                     
Poori Kizhangu -I froze a samll bowl of hers too.                                             
Here I go with the recipe of Bitter Gourd Podi
I donno how to name this recipe, I learnt it from my friend Suneetha(from Andhra). My DH also likes it very much, and I make it once in 2 ,3 months because it calls for deep frying.                      
After tiresome cooking, we went to Vanaathi - Mohan's Place for dinner. She made spicy & yummy Veggie Cutlets for appetizers. Definitely I should get her recipe and try it soon as a surprise.                
It was fun playing cards, delicious dinner and me falling from the swing tops them all. Kids played nicely in the swing. Shame on me…L
Bitter Gourd ---------------------> Slice into thin rounds
To Grind                     
* Dhalia -------------------------> ½ cup (Pottukadalai/Roasted Split Channa Dhal)
* Dry Coconut Powder ---------> ½ cup
Red Onion -----------------------> one half hopped into chunks
Chilli Powder --------------------> 2 tsp              
Salt ------------------------------> A2Y taste
First grind * marked items alone in the mixie and then add rest of the items to make a coarse paste.                    
v  Marinate bitter gourd in salt, turmeric for 30 minutes; then squeeze excess water and keep it aside          
v  Deep fry the Karela rounds in oil; I just pan fried, but it takes longer time                
v  In a wide pan, add oil; pour the Channa Dhal mixture and fry for few minutes                       
v  Now add the fried Bitter gourd and mix well              
v  Keep it for few minutes and remove it from heat
v  Make small balls when it is warm enough                  
v  Mix each ball in the hot rice and serve it with Pulikuzhambhu

Gongura Leaves & Ridge Gourd Skin Thovaiyal

This time the Ridge Gourd skin looks very good and I don't feel like wasting it. At the same time I was already in the process of making Goungura Thovaiyal. Suddenly my idea is bulb is switched on. Yes I made the thovaiyal with Gongura leaves & Ridge gourd skin.                              

Gongura /Sorrel leaves are very sour in taste, so need to add Tamarind as you do for any other thovaiyal                           

Gongura Leaves ---------------> Washed leaves alone
Ridge Gourd Skin --------------> Peel the skin along with the ridges
* Channa Dhal -----------------> 2 tsp
* Corriander Seeds ------------> 2 tsp
* Urad Dhal --------------------> 2 tsp
* Methi seeds ------------------> ½ tsp
* Sesame Seeds ---------------> 2 tsp
* Red Chillies ------------------> 3
Salt -----------------------------> A2Y                               

v  Dry roast the * marked items one by one or add one item at a time in the same order with a minute of gap in between.                    
v  In a pan, add oil. When it is hot add Gongura leaves and fry for few minutes..                       
v  Do the same for Ridge Gourd Skin.                 
v  Grind the dry Ingredients with.without water.   
v  Now add the Gongura Leaves & Skin     
v  Serve it with Hot rice & Gingelly Oil/Sesame oil                       

Kids Special - Garlic Rasam

When my DD gets cold or Cough or Fever, I make Garlic Rasam &  Par boiled Rice(Puzhungal Arisi). That’s the only taste she likes when she is sick and don't want to eat anything.                 
Par boiled rice is easily digestible and has more nutrients than Raw Rice(Pachaai Arisi)              
I cook the par boiled rice as whole or crack it down coarsely in a blender before cooking. Add little extra water so that rice will be cooked softly.             

Tomato ------------------> 1, Sliced
Garlic --------------------> 15 Cloves, minced
Tamarind Water --------> ½ cup
Green Chilli --------------> ¼ inch
Pepper-Jeera Powder ---> 4 tsp
Methi Seeds Powder ----> ½ tsp
Turmeric -----------------> 1 tsp
Curry leaves Powder ----> 1 tsp
Salt -----------------------> A2Y

v  In a pan, add little oil; when it is hot add minced Garlic and fry for few minutes                    
v  Add Tomato, Green Chilli & turmeric; fry for a minutes                       
v  Now add all the powders(Pepper Jeera Powder, Methi Seed Powder, Curry leaves Powder)    
v  Pour Tamarind water & 1 cup of plain water                
v  Leave it in medium, when it starts boiling remove rasam for the stove.                    
v  Do the seasoning if needed. I didn't do it because she was sick.                   
v  Serve it with hot rice.              

Yesterday she was sick & didn't eat very well throughout the day. For dinner I made this Rasam & Vendaikkai Poriyal. Surprisingly she finished the dinner in 20 minutes, usually she takes nearly 45 minutes.                 

ü  If the powders are not handy, just dry roast Pepper, Jeera, Methi & powder it freshly.          
ü  If you are making the powder freshly, include corriander seeds as well. It also has medicinal properties to relieve cold & cough.  

Kids Special -Corn Pasta

After so many experiments with pasta, finally my DD is happy with this healthier version of Pasta made without any other secondhand ingredients.                       

Organic Pasta --------------------> 1 cup, Cooked & Drained (Any kind)
Organic Frozen Corn ------------> 1 cup
Organic Butter -------------------> 1 tsp
Milk -------------------------------> 4 tsp
Shredded Cheese ---------------> As desired
Salt -------------------------------> A2Y Taste

v  I used the Alphabet Pasta from TJs.                
v  In a pan, melt the butter; add the corn and fry for few minutes                    
v  Now add the pasta, sprinkle salt                     
v  Finally add milk and stir it well             
v  While serving add cheese on top and microwave it.               
ü  Mixed Vegetables can be added to. I haven't tried yet.                      

Kids Special – Potato Gravy

This is a little modified verison of poori kizhanghu we make it for Pooris in hotels.                
It goes well with Chappati kind of dishes, sometimes If I mix this gravy with rice too. A different taste.            

Potato ---------------------> 2, Cooked & Peeled, cut into small cubes
Onions ---------------------> ½ cup
Tomato --------------------> ½ cup
Green Chilli ----------------> ¼ inch
Carrot ----------------------> 1 chopped fine
Zucchini --------------------> 1 chopped fine
Salt -------------------------> A2Y Taste
Mustard Seeds -------------> 1 tsp
Turmeric --------------------> ½ tsp
Curry leaves powder -------> ½ tsp
Methi Powder ---------------> ¼ tsp
Hing -------------------------> ¼ tsp

v  In a pan, do the seasoning followed by onions, Chillies & Tomato.                 
v  Add 1.5 cups of water. Remove chilli piece to avoid extra spiciness for the kids; but optional           
v  Add tomatoes, Carrot & Zucchini + Salt.                     
v  Bring it to boil and close with the lid.              
v  Leave it in medium for few minutes and remove from heat               
v  Serve it with Chappati, Puri or Dosa.               

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Kale - Mango Dhal

Really I too was confused to name this blend of dhal & I never made this combo in any dishes. Yetho thonichu, I started making it. I shared it with my friend Nithya and she liked it to my surprise.              
No doubt, I'll also like whatever I make. This time when I went to india I got freshly made Red Chilli Powder & Corriander Powder. There is a drastic difference in taste, smell & color with this homemade powder. We have many plants back in India for curry leaves. So we made powder out of it by drying it and I am using it directly in all the curries. Voooooow very tasty & healthy. My DD is also consuming curry leaves happily.                    
Methi powder I just grind it in Mixie and have it ready all the times.               
Moong Dhal -------------> 1.5 cups                   
Kale ---------------------> 1 bunch, chopped
Raw Mango -------------> Chopped into big chunks
Zucchini -----------------> 1, cubed
Onion --------------------> 1 cup Chopped fine
Tomato ------------------> 1 cup chopped fine
Green Chillies -----------> 2
Methi Powder -----------> 1 tsp
Chilli powder ------------> 2 tsp
Turmeric ----------------> 1 tsp
Tamarind Water --------> 1 cup
Salt ----------------------> A2Y taste

Mustard seeds -----------> 1 tsp
Jeera ---------------------> 1 tsp

v  In a wide sauce pan, pre wash moon dhal and cook it.                       
v  When it is half cooked, add Kale, Mango & Zuchinni, Salt; close with the lid               
v  In another saute pan, do the seasoning with 5 tsp oil; add methi powder, curry leaves powder, Turmeric Powder            
v  Add Onions, Tomatoes, Green Chilies, Chilli Powder until the onions are translucent.                        
v  Meantime, make sure dhaal mixture& the vegetables are cooked                 
v  Now add the onion mixture over the Dhal.                 
v  Pour the Tamraind water also.            
v  Bring it to boil then leave it in medium; close with the lid.                 
v  Garnish with Cilantro               
It goes well will any spicy curry like, Cauliflower curry or Potato kara curry                 
ü  I use both Moong Dhal & Red Lentils together or mostly Red lentils alone for making dhaal. I like the taste & smell of this lentil.                  

Palak Paneer

I am catching up again with my cooking marathon after my India visit. Last weekend I made 6 dishes for us and 2 for DD. I have to share this, my DH is now home and taking a break b4 starting on a new project. He is taking care of DD & Dishwasher loading J. When I go home I don't have much work apart from feeding her & packing lunch. I feel soooooo relaxed now. Piravi palanai adaintha mathiri irukku, athai naan konjam maathi, Kalyana panna palanai adiatha mathiru irukku yenakku.. avlo santhoshama irukku...             

Here I go with my list of dishes I made this weekend  
Sweet Potato Vatha Kuzhambhu                     
Mango, Kale & Zucchini Dhal               
Purple Cabbage Curry              
Cauliflower Poriyal                   
Tomato Subzi              
Palak Paneer                
DD's Veggie curry                   
DD's Poori Kizhangu                
So this whole week I din't cook, happily I enjoyed watching my missed out serialsJ.                       
I'll share the Palak Paneer Recipe                    
Paneer -------------------> 500 gms, diced into small cubes
Onion ---------------------> 1 cup Chopped fine
Tomato -------------------> 1 cup chopped fine
Chilli powder -------------> 2 tsp
Corriander Powder ------> 3 tsp
Turmeric -----------------> 1 tsp
Salt -----------------------> A2Y taste                       
To Grind                      
Spinach * ----------------> 1 box, I used Earth bound Organic from Costco
Green Chillies ------------> 2
Ginger --------------------> ½ inch
Garlic- --------------------> 4 cloves
* Wash & Cook the Spinach in a pan with Garlic & Salt            

Mustard seeds -----------> 1 tsp
Jeera ---------------------> 2 tsp

v  Shallow fry the Paneer cubes until lightly browned stirring occasionally, add them to the Water with Salt, Chilli Powder. Marinate them for at least 1/2 hour but it is optional            
v  In a Sauce Pan, do the seasoning with 5 tsp oil                      
v  Add Ginger Garlic Paste, Onions, Tomato, Green Chillies and fry until the oil comes out.
v  Make a fine paste with the items in "To Grind" Section. Add water if needed             
v  In a pan do the seasoning; add Onions, Tomatoes and fry for few minutes               
v  Add Chilli powder, Corriander Powder              
v  Add the Spinach paste and water necessary.             
v  Once it starts boiling then add fried cheese cubes                 
v  Close it with the lid; leave it in medium                      
v  Ready to serve with Chappati.