Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Jolada Mudde | Jowar Mudde | Indian spicy sorghum porridge : A Vegan Sorghum Recipe

I always gravitate towards "known to me" grains than the "new to me" grains. May be I play a safe game :p Jowar | Sorghum | Jola is one such grain that I love to bits. I love everything made using jowar. So, when my cousin told me about this mudde (rather porridge), I tried it the very next day. I have made this at least 20 times by now & still like to eat it every other day.

This is a North Karnataka specialty. I do not know why it is called mudde. Well, mudde according to me is something solid and takes a shape (mainly a sphere/ball). But, this is more like a porridge. The consistency of this is more like a mousse. If you know why this is called 'mudde', please comment or reply back.

Preparation Time: 3 mins
Cooking Time: 5-7 mins
Serves: 1 

Sorghum flour | Jolada hittu | Jowar flour: 1/4 cup, heaped
Onion: 1/3 cup finely chopped or 1 small
Green chilies: 2-3 nos, chopped, refer notes
Curry leaves: 2-3 nos, torn
Grated coconut: 1 tsp
Oil: 1 tsp
Mustard seeds: 1/4 tsp
Salt: As needed
Water: 1 & 1/4 cup

Other ingredients:
Clarified butter/ghee: a pinch, optional, refer notes

Add jowar flour to a mixing bowl, add the water, salt and whisk until no lumps. Keep it aside.

Heat oil in a medium wok. When oil is hot, throw in the mustard seeds. When mustard seeds crackle, throw in the curry leaves, green chilies and onion.

Saute till the onions turn translucent.
Whisk the flour mixture again and pour it over the tempering. Add the coconut too.

Cook the whole mixture on a low medium heat for 4-5 minutes stirring occasionally.Keep in mind, low-medium heat only.
The mixture thickens and when it starts thickening, keep stirring it continuously.

When the mixture turns to a mousse consistency, turn off the heat.
Serve it hot with few drops of ghee on top and a salad of your choice.


  • I like my mudde spicy, hence I add 3 chilies. You can adjust according to your preference.
  • I recommend serving it with a little ghee. If you are vegan, you could replace it with some extra virgin coconut oil.
  • If you cook this on a high heat, the mixture thickens quickly but the flour remains uncooked. Hence, do it on a low it. I am repeating again :)

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Banana Huggi Recipe | Banana Pongal : Unique pongal recipe

Wishing all of you a very happy Makara Sankranti | Pongal | Lohri.

 Did I mention before that we are moving again? Hold on.., this time we are moving to another house near by and not to another Country. I have made good friends here at my apartment and am definitely gonna miss them. Banana pongal is one of the recipes that I learnt from my friend here. I am planning to get as many recipes possible from her and try before I move. Keep watching this space, there's more coming :)

The color of the pongal will be anywhere from light brown to very dark brown depending on the type of jaggery used. However, the color does not alter the taste of the pongal in any ways.

Other pongal recipes 
Khara Pongal

Preparation Time: 10 mins
Cooking Time: 40 mins
Serves: 3-4

Raw rice: 1/2 cup, refer notes
Water: 1 cup,
Banana: 1 medium sized, refer notes

Jaggery | Brown sugar: 1/2 cup, refer notes
Water: 1/4 cup, more or less
Ghee | Clarified butter: 3 tbsp + 2 tsp
Grated coconut: 1 tbsp, fresh or frozen
Cardamom powder: a pinch
Cashew nuts: 1/2 tsp
Chopped almonds: 1/2 tsp
Raisins: 1/2 tsp

Wash the rice thoroughly and let it soak for 30 mins.
Add the water to it. Pressure cook the rice for 4-5 whistles.Allow the cooker to cool for 10 mins.
Meantime, add water to the roughly pound jaggery and heat it on a medium heat.

When the jaggery is dissolved in water, strain the jaggery water. (Refer notes below)
Put the water back in the same sauce pan and bring it to a boil.
Mash the cooked rice.
When water starts boiling, add the cooked rice to it and mix well. Add 2 tbsp of ghee and allow the rice to cook again for 3-5 mins on low-medium heat.

Finely chop the banana and add the chopped banana to the rice mixture along with a tbsp of ghee.

Mix well and cook again for couple of mins.
Mash the bananas along with the rice and add the cardamom powder, grated coconut. Cook for 3-5 mins.

Meantime, heat about 2 tsp of ghee in a small sauce pan. When ghee is hot, throw in the chopped cashews and almonds.

When nuts turn golden brown, turn off the heat and add raisins. When raisins plump up, pour the nuts over the cooked pongal.

Mix well and serve it hot.


  • Raw rice is preferred for the pongal. But, if you do not have it, you could make is using ponni or sona masoori rice (or any small grain rice). I suggest adding a little more water to the sona masoori rice as they dont turn soft or mushy easily. (My rice did end up grainy as you can see in the pictures. I did not have raw rice).
  • When the rice is still hot, mash the rice so that the huggi/pongal becomes mushy. 
  • A well ripened banana is what we need for this huggi. Do not use the green ones.
  • Our family prefers huggi to be sweeter. You could reduce the amount of jaggery to a little more than 1/4 cup (for the quantity mentioned above).
  • Jaggery has lot of impurities. Hence, it is advised to strain the jaggery water before making anything using jaggery.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Oats Pongal

I bought a big batch of old fashioned oats from Costco thinking that I'll use it more often. The oats took a back seat as both the boys of my family avoid it. As I have mentioned many times before, I hate wasting and so, am trying to use up the oats now. One of my friend's told me that she made oats pongal and everyone liked it.

So, I thought of giving it a try for a weekday lunch. I was pretty sure that my boys wouldn't eat it. Hence, I cooked it for myself and I kinda liked it. I might make it again sometime for my weekday lunch.

Preparation Time: 20 mins
Cooking Time: 15 mins

Old fashioned oats: 3/4 cup, refer notes
Moong dal | Skinned gram dal: 1/3 cup
Turmeric powder: a pinch

Oil: 1 tsp
Ghee/Clarified butter: 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds: 1/2 tsp
Cumin seeds: 1/2 tsp
Cashew nuts: 1 tbsp
Curry leaves: 6-8 nos, torn
Grated ginger: 1 tsp
Pepper powder: 1/2 tsp
Green chili: 2 nos, chopped
Salt: As needed
Water: As needed, refer notes


Wash the moong dal thoroughly in water. Add the turmeric to the dal and pressure cook the moong dal for 3-4 whistles. Allow the dal to cook.
Heat oil and ghee together in a sauce pan. When the oils are hot, throw in the mustard seeds. When mustard seeds crackle, add the cumin seeds. When cumin seeds turn golden brown, add the green chilies and the torn curry leaves. When leaves wilt, add the cashews and roast till the cashews turn golden brown.
When cashews are golden brown, add the grated ginger, pepper powder, turmeric and saute.
Add the water to the tempering and boil the water. Add the salt, oats and cook the oats on a medium heat for 5-7 mins.

The oats fluffs up and becomes soft.
Meantime, mash the cooked dal and keep it aside.
Added the mashed dal to the oats mixture and cook again for 5-7 mins until the oats is well blended and mushy.
Garnish it with some shredded coconut and serve the pongal hot.


  • I added about 2.5 cups of water. You would need about 2 cups of water for every 3/4 to 1 cup of oats. 
  • I have made this pongal with instant or quick cooking oats too. If you use quick cooking oats, you would need much lesser water, and the cooking time would be very less too. I suggest adding 1.5 cups of quick cooking oats for 1/3 cup of moong dal.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe | Chocolate Icing

 Last year, when I made these angry birds cupcakes.., my hubby didn't support me much. Not because he did not believe me.., but he didn't want me to take the trouble to make them. I took the initiative and did them for my pleasure. It was such a huge hit among children that this year, my hubby was like.., what are you planning to do? He in fact sat with me to browse the cupcake pics on the web. We decided on making the owl cupcakes together. He even helped me to take step by step pictures to put them on the blog.

However I did not want to buy the icing from the store. I wanted to make them at home. I made few small batches and once I was happy with the outcome, I made a big batch to frost the owl cup cakes.

Here is my version of chocolate buttercream icing using cocoa powder.

Preparation Time: 5-7 mins
Cooking Time : Nil
Makes: About 2.5 cups of frosting

Unsalted butter : 1 stick or 1/2 cup, refer notes
Cocoa powder: 1/3 cup
Confectioners Sugar: 2 cups, refer notes
Vanilla Extract: 1 tsp
Milk: 2-3 tbsp, as needed

Let the butter sit on the counter until it reaches room temperature.

Add the butter to a big mixing bowl. Beat the butter until it is fluffy. I used a hand blender to beat it. You could use a food processor or you could whisk it manually using a whisker. (Refer notes)

Once fluffy, add the cocoa powder, 1 cup of sugar, a tbsp of milk, vanilla extract and beat again until all the ingredients are combined well.

Add another cup of sugar, a tbsp of milk and whisk.

If you feel the icing is very thick after mixing well, add few drops of milk and whisk.
I prefer to keep the icing a tad thinner.
Voila, your chocolate buttercream frosting is ready. Isn't it quite simple?

Now use this icing on your cupcakes or cakes


  • When adding milk to the icing recipe, remember that little goes a long way. Do not add too much of liquid to make the frosting thin. Add few drops at a time.
  • If you do not like the buttery smell and feel much, you could replace half the butter with vegetable shortening like Crisco. Vegetable shortening is like Vanaspati (as called in India). I love my butter.
  • Confectioners sugar is powdered sugar. You could add the same amount of finely powdered sugar too.
  • I have made buttercream frosting using hand blender, food processor and also whisking it manually. One thing to keep in mind is, whisking buttercream frosting is not as hard as whisking whipped cream. You can easily whip it up manually. So, don't fret, if you do not have hand blender or food processor. 
  • You can save the left over buttercream frosting for a week easily in the fridge. If you pop it in the freezer, you can save it for 2-3 months. 

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Heerekai Chutney | Ridge gourd Chutney | Thurai Chutney | Beerakaya Pachadi : South Indian Chutney Recipe

Wishing all my readers a very happy and a prosperous new year. Hope you all have a wonderful year.

The first week of  2015 was eventful. We hosted a Vishnu Sahasranama Chanting on 1st Jan at our house. I cooked palahara and the chanting went as planned. The very next morning, I got a call from my sis and bro. They informed me that our grand mom(mom's mom) passed away. I was heartbroken and speechless. I could not control my emotions. I will not write more as I can go on for hours about my relationship with her. RIP ajji is all I say.

Now back to the recipe.

Heerekai Chutney is a very simple and flavorful chutney that can be cooked under 20 mins. And the best part is, you can use the skin of the ridge gourd too for this chutney.

Preparation Time: 3 mins
Cooking Time: 15 mins
Serves: 3-4

Roughly chopped ridge gourd: 1 cup, with the skin
Green chilies: 3-4 nos, refer notes
Tamarind : 1/2 tsp, tightly packed
Salt: As needed
Turmeric powder: a pinch
Jaggery or brown sugar: 1/2 tsp
Asafoetida: a small pinch
Curry leaves: 3-4 nos, torn
Coriander leaves: 2 tbsp, finely chopped
Water: As needed
Grated coconut: 1/2 cup, fresh or frozen, refer notes

For tempering:
Coconut oil: 1 tsp, refer notes
Mustard seeds: 1/2 tsp
Urad dal | Black gram dal: 1 tsp
Asafoetida: a pinch
Curry leaves: 2 nos, torn

Add the ridge gourd, green chilies, tamarind, jaggery, curry leaves, asafoetida, coriander leaves, and turmeric to a sauce pan.

Add enough water to cover the vegetables and boil until the vegetables are tender and cooked. Turn off the heat.

Allow the mixture to cool. Once cool, grind it along with the coconut to make a smooth paste.
Scoop out the paste on to a serving bowl.

Prepare the tempering. Heat oil in a small sauce pan. When oil is hot, throw in the mustard seeds. When mustard seeds crackle, add the black gram dal and roast till the dal turns golden brown. Throw in the curry leaves and when leaves wilt, add the asafoetida and turn off the heat.
Pour the tempering over the scooped chutney.
Mix well and serve it with chapathi/poori/rice or roti.


  • Instead of fresh or frozen coconut, you could use dry coconut powder that is available at Indian stores.
  • I have used Serrano peppers and Indian green chilies for this chutney. 
  • If you do not wish to use coconut oil, you could use any other cooking oil of your choice.
  • Do not add too much water to cook the ridge gourd. Just add enough water so that you could use the boiled vegetable water for making the smooth paste. In that case, you don't waste any boiled vegetable water which is filled with nutrition and flavor.

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