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Thursday, September 23, 2010

Palak Amti (Spinach & black eyed peas curry)

Tried this recipe when I had to finish off the last portion of my sprouted black eyed peas. I blamed myself for not  noticing her blog till now. I might have seen it here & there, but never noticed that she has such a huge collection of recipes. Impressed by her! I have made some minor changes in the recipe to suit our taste buds. I must admit that, this is a non-tiring & nutritious recipe. Thank you Nupur.

Ingredients:

Black eyed peas: 1 cup (Soaked in water for 3-4 hours)
Spinach: 2 cups or around 200gm (finely chopped)
Tamarind paste: 1 tbsp
Jaggery: 1 tsp
Salt: According to taste

For grinding:
Raw rice: 1 tsp
Grated coconut: 1/2 cup (fresh or frozen)
Green chillies: 4 nos

For tempering:
Oil: 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds: 1/2 tsp
Shallots/sambar onions: 4 nos (finely chopped) (Original recipe didnot have this)
Asafoetida: a pinch
Curry leaves: 5-6 nos

Method:

  • Pressure cook the peas with a big pinch of salt for 2 whistles. Let the cooker cool for 5-10mins.
  • Meantime, make a fine paste of the coconut, green chillies & rice. Keep aside.
  • Add a cup of water to the chopped spinach & cook them on medium heat for 3-5mins (Spinach gets cooked fast). Add the cooked peas, tamarind paste, salt, jaggery & the ground paste to it. Boil on a medium heat for 5-7mins (Let the peas & spinach absorb the spices). 
  • Finally prepare the tempering. Heat a small pan. Add oil to it. When oil is hot, add mustard seeds. When seeds splutter, add curry leaves & finely chopped onions.Saute till the onions become translucent. Finally add the asafoetida & turn off the heat. Pour the tempering over the curry prepared & mix well.
  • Serve hot with plain or mildly flavored rice. We preferred it with plain rice.



Notes:
Original recipe had garlic, that I have avoided. If your family prefers garlic, you could use it too.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Thili Saaru (Udupi rasam/soup)

Did I mention before that we shifted to a new place? We moved to a different locality here. This is our first high floor house (yippee.., we are in 16th floor!). The beautiful & quiet view of the sunrise, orange-ish red evenings & the lights at night is awesome. Greenery, sun & sea is what I see from my balcony. I wake up happily to see the beautiful sun rising. My son enjoys seeing the flights landing & taking off. He sometimes gets overjoyed to see 4-5 flights at a time. (Yes, we are near the Airport). I am really happy with the move we made (though we had to sacrifice the distance from the city!). This is what we see, the moment we open our eyes.
I eagerly wait for the sunrise these days :)


Back from the trance to reality.


Here is the recipe that was waiting for the longest time in my drafts. Every time I wanted to publish this recipe, I would postpone it, just because of the pictures. I wanted to make complete justice for this exquisite dish. I donno how successful I am, in this...


Serves: 4-6
Preparation time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 45 mins (including the time to pressure cook) 
Recipe source: mom-in-law and sis-in-law.

Ingredients:


1. Tomatoes: 2 nos
2. Green chillies: 2 nos
3. Curry leaves: 4-5
4. Coriander leaves: 1 tbsp (finely chopped)
5. Pigeon peas/toor dal/togari bele: a fistful
6. Thick tamarind extract: 1.5 tsp 
          or
    Tamarind: medium lemon sized ball (soak it in water & extract the juice)
7. Rasam powder: 1 tbsp
8. Thick coconut milk: 1.5 tbsp 
        or
    Thin coconut milk: 1/2 cup
       or 
    Milk: 3 tbsp (low fat or full cream milk)
9. Jaggery: 1 tsp (powdered)
10. Salt: According to taste
11. Coriander leaves: 1 tbsp (for garnishing)
12. Water: 3 cups


Ingredients for tempering:
Coconut oil: 1 tsp (Other cooking oils could be used too)
Mustard seeds: 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves: a string (6-8 nos)
Asafoetida: a big pinch


Method:

  • Wash the tomatoes, green chillies, curry leaves & chop them into finely.
  • Wash the pigeon peas/toor dal. 
  • Add the tomatoes, green chillies, curry leaves, coriander leaves to the pigeon peas. Add a cup of water & pressure cook for 3 whistles. Allow the pressure cooker to cool a bit.
  • Meantime, in a broad vessel add a cup of water. To that add tamarind extract, salt, jaggery & heat it on a medium flame. When the mixture starts boiling, add the cooked pigeon peas mixture & boil it again. 
  • When the mixture just starts to boil again, add the rasam powder, coconut milk or normal milk & boil it on a medium-high heat (Turn off the heat when the rasam reaches the rolling boil state).
  • Prepare the tempering. Heat oil in a small pan. When oil is hot, add mustard seeds. When mustard seeds splutter add curry leaves & asafoetida. Turn off the heat & pour the tempering over the rasam prepared.
  • Garnish it with coriander leaves & serve it hot with steaming hot rice, palya, pickle or papad/fritters.


Notes:

  • Addition of jaggery makes this dish very unique. For authentic taste, do not skip the jaggery.
  • I have made this rasam with coconut milk & with normal milk (full cream or low fat milk). Both taste equally good. However, the actual recipe calls for the freshly extracted thin coconut milk.
  • In case you do not have home made rasam powder, use MTR rasam powder. I have tried with MTR rasam powder too. Tastes good too...

Thursday, September 16, 2010

One more milestone & a festive spread

Yippee.., Another day, another milestone...if you remember, I had recently celebrated 2nd year birthday of Savi-Ruchi. Now, with this post, I have completed 200 posts...Thank you for all the continued support. When I started, I really had not imagined that I will be enthusiastic for, so long. I am extremely satisfied with myself. I enjoy cooking; I like clicking; and I love blogging (Sorry..couldn't think of a good rhyming word :) :)...



Back to the festive spread. Thought of sharing with you my Ganesha festival thali or spread. We had a great festival this year. My son thoroughly enjoyed the prayers & the food. Poor guy was forced to fast with us, as I was busy preparing the prasadam(offerings to God).

Here is what I prepared.
1. Sabbakki payasam/kheer(Sago pudding)
2. Kosu palya (Cabbage stirfry)
3. Kadlekalu usli (steamed & spiced black chickpeas/garbanzo beans)
4. Puliyogare (Tamarind rice)
5. Thukudi/shankarpoli (Fried snack)
6. Modaka/modak (fried sweet dumplings)
7. Hayagreeva/maddi (Gram dal dessert)
8. Rice
9. Thovve (Dal fry)
10. Rasam
11. Karigadabu (Deep fried sweet dish)
12. Curd/Yogurt (It didnot take any effort to prepare this though!!)

Here is a picture for you (It has items 1-9). I was too tired & hungry after preparing. Hence, did not make effort to take pictures in different angles. Did not even bother to place them in different bowls. Will take better pictures next time. Promise!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Simple Carrot Palya(Carrot stir-fry): Beginner Series

Some of my cousins started cooking after they moved out for work. One such cousin requested me to share very simple & nutritious recipes for him to try out. He is very close to me since my & his childhood days. I specially prepared this dish for him, took step-by-step pictures so that it helps. This one is for you Ashwin. He was the inspiration behind me to start this new series. This is also for those who have just entered the kitchen & do not have much knowledge about cooking.  I will try to post a recipe at least once in fort-night for this series.

This dish tastes great when mixed with hot rice & a dollop of ghee. Tastes good with Indian breads (chapathi). Could be eaten as is.

Ingredients: (Serves 1-2)
Carrots: 1/4kilo (2-3 medium sized)
Oil: 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds/saasive: 1/4 tsp
Urad dal/uddinabele/black lentils (split & deskinned): 1 tsp
Kadalebele/Gram dal: 1 tsp
Menasinakayi/Red chillies: 2 nos (broken)
Karibevu/Curry leaves: 4 nos
Water: 1/4th cup
Salt: According to taste
Sugar: a pinch/ondu chitike

For garnishing:
Coriander leaves: 2 tbsp (finely chopped)
Grated coconut: 3 tbsp (fresh or frozen)

Method:

Wash the carrots & gently peel the outer skin. Grate the carrots & keep them aside.

Heat oil in a broad pan, when oil is hot. Add mustard seeds, when mustard seeds splutter, add urad & gram dal. When dal turns golden brown, add red chillies & curry leaves.

When leaves turn crisp, add the grated carrots & saute for 10-15secs. Add the water & allow the carrots to cook on a medium flame for 5 mins.

When carrot is soft, add salt, sugar & cook again on a low heat for a minute.
Turn off the flame & finally garnish it with coriander leaves & grated coconut.

Serve it hot with steamed rice or chapathi or roti.

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