Author Archives: Gouthami Yuvarajan

Tindora/Ivy Gourd/Kovakkai Fry – Jusss yummmm!!!

I saw this recipe on a YouTube channel a few days back and tried it at once. It was really good. But since we do not use a lot of oil in our family’s daily cooking, I did not try it out after that. With torrential rains hitting Chennai over the past week, I was literally craving to have something spicy, oily and just tasty!! That is when I decided to try this once again and woohoo the result was much better this time!! With rains lashing out on your window panes and the chillness brushing your face, one bite of this (just this..no rice nothing!!) and a hot cup of tea would take you to seventh heaven!! Trust me. This tasted great specially in this weather. Of course, it tastes best when accompanied with sambar rice or curd rice or just steaming hot rice with ghee ๐Ÿ™‚ So has your tongue started tickling already?? Wait not..Straight to the recipe and then to your kitchen. Grab your tindoras and masalas.. And treat yourself!!

Tindora Fry

Serves: 3

Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

Tindora/Ivy Gourd – 2 cups (sliced into thin rounds)
Onion – 1 medium sized finely chopped
Oil – 4-5 tsp
Coriander Powder – 1 tsp
Cumin Powder – 1/2 tsp
Chilli Powder – 1/2 tsp
Turmeric Powder – 1/4 tsp
Garam Masala – 1/2 tsp
Curry Leaves – a few
Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
Salt – to taste

Method:

1. Cut tindora into thin slices. Mix the slices with all the masalas and little oil. Leave this aside for 15 minutes.
2. Heat oil in a pan. Temper mustard seeds and curry leaves.
3. Add onions and saute till they turn almost golden brown.
4. Now add the marinated tindora slices and required salt.
5. Mix well. Sprinkle water and keep cooking on a low-medium flame till the vegetable is soft and cooked fully.
6. Garnish with coriander leaves.

GUEST RECIPE – Almond Burfi – melts away in your mouth!!!!!

Back with a guest post after a long time. Had been to my relatives house for Diwali when I tasted this sinfully delicious burfi/fudge made of almonds. Requested for the recipe and here it is. Thanks to Mrs. Latha Sivakumar for this droolicious sweet recipe.

Almond Burfi

Yield:ย 40 pieces

Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

Almonds – 1 cup
Sugar – 1.5 cups
Ghee – 100 gms

Method:

1. Soak almonds in hot water for about 30 minutes. Take them out and remove the skin.
2. Grind the peeled almonds with little water.
3. Mix the almond paste and sugar together.
4. Heat a pan. Once hot, add the almond – sugar mixture and keep stirring on medium flame till it reaches a semisolid consistency.
5. At one stage, it will become very tough to stir. Add ghee at that stage and mix well. Leave for a minute till the ghee is absorbed well.
6. Grease a plate with ghee. Now pour the almond mixture and leave it for 10 minutes so that it sets well.
7.Once set, cut into pieces and serve.

Sojji – easy to make tiffin :)

If you are from Tamil Nadu reading this, am sure you must be familiar with the phrase bajji-sojji. Haha, yeah.. This is the same sojji. After all the heavy diwali feasts, if you need something mild and soothing, go with this. This is extremely simple and tasty too. It uses ingredients similar to pongal. Check out the recipe below.

Sojji

Serves: 4

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

Raw Rice – 1.5 cups
Moong Dal – 0.5 cup
Red Chillies – 4
Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
Urad Dal – 1 tsp
Channa Dal – 1 tsp
Oil – 2 tsp
Water – 5 cups
Curry Leaves – a few
Salt – to taste
Grated Coconut – 1 tbsp

Method:

1. Dry roast rice and dal till it gives a nice aroma and the rice changes bright white.Keep aside.
2. Heat oil in a pressure pan. Temper mustard seeds. Once done, add the dals and let them turn brown.
3. Now add red chillies and saute for a minute.
4. Add water and required salt and bring to a boil.
5. Now add the roasted rice and dal. Mix well.
6. Once the water is almost absorbed, close the pan. Wait for steam to release and put the weight on.
7. Cook for 10 minutes with weight/whistle on.Switch off after 10 minutes.
8. Once pressure subsides, open and fluff up with fork. Add grated coconut and serve hot.

Note:

– The water quantity depends on the quality of rice used.
– The cooking time also varies with the pressure cooker used. Mine takes 10 minutes after the weight is put. I generally wait for the steam to build up before I put the weight.

Banana Flower Usili / Vazhaipoo Usili – Healthy and tasty!!

Almost every part of the banana plant is edible and the flower is one of the most healthiest option available. Though the cleaning and chopping part involves some work, the health benefits that this offers is worth the effort taken. This is a stir fry recipe and goes very well with sambar rice or just plain rice with ghee. As regards the health benefits, it wards off infections and is very very good for people with diabetes. Apart from this, it is a rich source of vitamins and minerals. I had already posted a guest recipe(dosa recipe) with banana stem/ Vazhaithandu (Check it out here). Lets move on to this recipe now.

Vazhaipoo Usili

Serves: 3

Preparation Time: 1 hr soaking time + 30 mins cleaning time
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

Chopped Banana florets – 2 cups
Toor Dal – 1/2 cup
Channa Dal – 1/4 cup
Red Chillies – 3 or 4 (depending on the level of spiciness)
Lemon juice – 1 – 2 tsp (optional)
Oil – 2 tsp
Salt – to taste
Curry Leaves – a few
Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
Asafoetida/Hing – 1/4 tsp

Method:

1. Remove the florets from the banana flower. Chop them finely and immerse in buttermilk so that they do not turn black in color.
2. Soak the dals together for 1 hour. Grind the soaked dals along with red chillies, hing and salt to a coarse paste.
3. Pressure cook the florets and the dal paste for 3 whistles.
4. Heat oil in a pan. Temper mustard seeds and curry leaves.
5. Add the florets and dal mixture. Add required salt for the florets.
6. Mix well.
7. Garnish with coriander leaves. Switch off the flame and add lemon juice if you wish to have a tangy taste.

Capsicum Salan – tasty gravy made with tricolor capsicums!!

Mirchi Ka Salan is a very famous gravy that is had with biryani. I tried the salan recipe long back with long chillies that are used to make bajjis. After a long gap, wanted to try the recipe with capsicums. Luckily, had all the three colors at home and this tasted great with capsicums too. PAired this wRead on for the recipe.

Capsicum Salan

Serves: 3

Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

Green Capsicums – 2 medium
Red Capsicum – 1 medium
Yellow Capsicum – 1 medium
Coriander Powder – 1 tsp
Cumin Powder – 1/2 tsp
Chilli Powder – 3/4 tsp
Garam Masala – 1/2 tsp
Turmeric Powder – 1/4 tsp
Tamarind – gooseberry sized
Ginger Garlic Paste – 1 tsp
Cumin Seeds – 1 tsp
Oil – 2 tsp
Salt – to taste

To roast and grind:

Grated fresh coconut – 1/4 cup
Peanuts – 1/4 cup
White Sesame Seeds – 2 tbsp
Onion – 1 medium sized
Oil – 2 tsp

Method:

1. Heat oil in a pan. Roast the coconut till brown and keep aside.
2. Next add peanuts and sesame seeds and roast till brown. Keep aside.
3. Finally add onions and saute till they turn golden brown.
4. Blend all of the above to a smooth paste.
5. Heat remaining oil in a pan. Temper cumin seeds.
6. Add the chopped capsicums and ginger garlic paste. Saute for 2 minutes.
7. Now add all the masalas and saute for sometime.
8. Finally add the ground paste and tamarind extract. Mix well.
9. Add required salt and let the mixture simmer for sometime.
10. Garnish with coriander leaves.

Note:

– You can just use green peppers if the other two colors are not available.

Masoor Dal Fry – yummy!!

Started to cook masoor dal only recently. And we loved the taste at the very first attempt. This is a very very simple recipe that can be done in a jiffy. It tastes great with jeera rice, pulao and rotis. This uses easily available ingredients at home and can be prepared easily by a beginner too. Masoor Dal is one of the healthiest dals with a unique taste of its own. Let us have a look at the recipe.

Masoor dal fry

Serves: 3

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

Masoor Dal – 1/2 cup
Onion – 1 medium sized
Tomatoes – 2 small
Green Chillies – 3
Cumin Powder – 1/2 tsp
Chilli Powder – 1/2 tsp
Turmeric Powder – 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds – 1 tsp
Oil – 2 tsp
Salt – to taste
Coriander Leaves – for garnish

Method:

1. Pressure cook dal for 5-6 whistles or till soft.Mash and keep aside.
2. Heat oil in a pan. Temper cumin seeds.
3. Add chopped onion and slit green chillies. Saute till they are done.
4. Add tomatoes and little salt. Cook till the tomatoes turn mushy.
5. Add cumin, chilli and turmeric powders and mix well.
6. Add the cooked dal and water to get the desired consistency.
7. Add salt. Allow to simmer for 10 minutes.
8. Garnish with coriander leaves.

Notes:

– Oil can be replaced with ghee/butter for a richer taste.
– A tadka with red chillies can be added at the final stage.

Baby Potato Masala – very very simple!!

I am a huge huge fan of potatoes and I am sure most of you would be like me. I can just die for baby potatoes. They are a feast for the eyes and palate. This recipe is very very simple and anybody just starting to cook can try this. I bet you will love it ๐Ÿ™‚ This can be had as a starter though it tastes great with sambar/curd rice.

Baby Potato Masala

Serves: 2

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

Baby Potatoes – 35-40
Onion – 1 medium finely sliced
Oil – 5 tsp
Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
Curry Leaves – a few
Coriander Leaves – for garnish
Turmeric Powder – 1/4 tsp
Chilli Powder – 3/4 tsp
Tamarind Water – 1.5 tbsp
Salt – to taste

Method:

1. Pressure cook baby potatoes with enough water for about 5-6 whistles. Once pressure subsides, open the cooker and peel the potatoes. Prick them with a fork and keep aside.
2. Heat oil in a pan. Temper mustard seeds and curry leaves.
3. Add onions and saute till they are done.
4. Now add the potatoes, tamarind water and the powders.
5. Stir well. Add required salt.
6. Keep roasting on low flame if you want the potaoes to be well roasted else you can switch off the flame and serve as such.
7. Garnish with coriander leaves.

Puffed Rice/Pori/Borugulu Upma – can be had as a chat too!!

Had this on my to do list for a very long time. Finally it was destined for yesterday’s dinner. I would rather say this is a chat instead of an upma and can be had to satisfy your evening cravings.

Pori Upma

Serves: 3

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

Pori/Puffed Rice – 18 cups (around 4 packets)
Onion – 1 big finely chopped
Tomatoes – 2 medium sized chopped
Green Chillies – 3 slit
Paruppu Podi – 2.5 tbsp
Chilli Powder – 0.5 tsp
Oil – 2 tsp
Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
Cumin Seeds – 1 tsp
Salt – to taste
Curry Leaves – a few
Coriander Leaves – for garnish

Method:

1. Wash the puffed rice in water 2 times to remove dirt. Squeeze the excess water and strain the puffed rice. Keep aside.
2. Heat oil in a pan. Temper mustard, cumin and curry leaves.
3. Saute onions and green chillies till onions turn pink.
4. Add tomatoes and little salt. Saute till they turn mushy.
5. Add the puffed rice and mix well.
6. Now add the paruppu podi and chilli powder and little oil.
7. Add required salt and garnish with coriander leaves.

Notes:

– Do not soak the puffed rice. This might spoil the texture of the upma.
– Urad dal and channa dal can also be added to tempering.
– Paruppu podi is nothing but a mixture of fried gram (pottukadalai/dalia) and red chillies in powder form. You can substitute with powdered fried gram and increase the quantity of chilli powder to your taste.
– Lemon juice can also be added at the last.
– Raw onions can also be used for the topping.

Idli Podi – the perfect accompaniment for your idlis and dosas!!

Idli Podi/Molagapodi or Gunpowder – yes, the name is so common in almost all South Indian homes. When you run out of time to prepare a chutney or sambar, just a dash of gingelly oil into this yummy powder does the magic!! This can be used for stir fries/poriyals too. Goes really well with idli, dosa, uthappams etc. A South Indian tiffin menu is incomplete without this. This recipe is from my mother in law and it tastes great. Now off to the recipe.

Idli Podi

Ingredients:

Dry Red Chillies – 35-38
Coriander Seeds – 3/4 cup
Urad Dal – 3/4 cup
Channa Dal –ย little more than 1/2 cup
Asafoetida/Hing/Perungayam – 3 or 4 pieces
Oil – 2 tsp
Salt – to taste

Method:

1. Heat oil in a big kadai. Once oil is hot, add asafoetida pieces and roast till they change color and are soft.
2. Add the chillies with the stem and roast till they are crisp and give a tingling sound.
3. Add urad and channa dals. Once they start to turn brown, add dhania/coriander seeds and roast till the dals are golden brown. Switch off the stove.
4. Let the whole mixture cool down.
5. Discard the stem of the chillies.
6. Blend everything along with required salt to a powder.
7. Store in airtight container.

Notes:

– Please ensure the roasting is done on a low flame.
– Take care not to burn the chillies. They should not become black.

Cabbage Stir Fry with Moong Dal – Simple yet satisfying!!

Well, a post after a very long time!! So, posting something very simple and easy to make. Most South Indian lunch menus have the following items; Sambar, Rasam and a poriyal/stir fry. This is a very common stir fry/ poriyal made with cabbage. I learnt this from my mother-in-law. She makes a spicy poriyal version too. However, this tastes mild and is a very good combination with spicy sambar rice. One small tip here ๐Ÿ˜‰ You can even use this as a sandwich filling ๐Ÿ˜›

Cabbage Stir Fry with moong Dal

Serves: 3

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

Cabbage(shredded) – 2 – 2.5 cups (not very finely shredded)
Green Chillies – 3
Moong Dal – 2 tbsp
Turmeric Powder – 1/4 tsp
Grated Coconut – 2 tbsp
Salt – to taste
Oil – 2 tsp
Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
Curry Leaves – a few
Water – as required

Method:

1. Heat oil in a pan. Temper mustard seeds and curry leaves. Saute green chillies.
2. Now add the cabbage and mix well. Saute for 2 minutes.
3. Now add the moong dal and turmeric powder. Sprinkle little water. Mix well.
4. Keep sprinkling water in small amounts and cook closed on a low flame.
5. Repeat this until the cabbage and moong dal turn soft.
6. Add required salt and grated coconut. Mix well and saute for 1 minute.

Notes:

– Do not overcook the cabbage or dal. The texture should be intact.
– You can increase/decrease the amount of dal and coconut depending on your taste.