Thursday, March 29, 2007

Peas Peda

From a long time i wanted to try and make peas halwa and today is the day. When i started to make it, i was having doubts, will it taste like a halwa. Now the final taste is more like a milk peda. So i think peas peda will be a proper name.

Ingredients

1 lb - Frozen Sweet peas ( Defrost )
One 12 fl oz can - Evaporated milk
3/4 cup - Mawa powder
10 - Almonds
1 1/2 cup - Sugar
4 - Cardamom, powdered
1/4 to 1/2 cup - Ghee
Pinch of salt

Method

1 ) In a blender, grind peas to a paste. Put almonds in hot water and remove the skin. Chop the almonds a keep aside.
2 ) Heat a heavy bottom pan, add evaporated milk and the peas paste. Mix and stir well. Cook the peas on low heat for 5 minutes. Then add sugar, cardamom powder and mawa powder. Keep stirring till it thickens up.
3 ) Add the chopped almonds, pinch of salt and ghee. Stir till it has thickened and forms like a ball, leaving the sides of the pan.
4 ) Grease a plate with ghee. Transfer the contents to the plate and spread. Once cool you can shape it round or any shape you like.

Serve as a dessert.

What is Mawa or Khoya

Mawa or khoya is a dairy product used in making Indian sweets. Ready made khoya or mawa is available in indian stores. I found mawa powder instead of the solidified milk.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Tomato Rice

Tomatoes are packed with a lot of health benefits. Bright red tomatoes are the best to get good amount of lycopene, vitamins C, K & A, potassium, and fiber. Tomatoes does not lose it's nutritional benefits by cooking. Is tomato a vegetable or a fruit ? Tomato is actually a fruit, but considered a vegetable.

Here is a recipe to cook tomatoes and get the benefits of this fruit / Vegetable.

Ingredients

1 cup - Basmati rice

5 - Tomatoes, chopped

2 inch - Ginger, paste

5 flakes - Garlic, paste

10 - shallots , chopped

1 - Green chili, chopped

1/4 tsp - Jeera / Cumin

1/4 tsp - Fennel seeds / Perumjeerakam

2 sprigs - Curry leaves

Sesame oil

Salt to taste

Method

1 ) Heat oil in pan. Add curry leaves, jeera, fennel seeds and fry for a minute. Then add green chili, paste of ginger - garlic. Fry till lighlty brown.

2 ) Add chopped shallots and lightly brown them. Add chopped tomatoes, fry and cook till tomotoes are a bit mashed. Add salt to taste.

3 ) Add 1.5 cup water and bring it to a boil. Add washed rice, bring to a boil and then simmer. Close with a lid and cook till the rice is fully cooked. Take off the stove. Open the lid only after, it has cooled down a bit.

Serve hot and enjoy this tomato rice.

This is my entry for the Jihva for tomatoes, hosted by RP of My workshop.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Kallumakai Pickle - Mussel Pickle

Spicy and tangy Kallumakai pickle. Pickling mussels is done in North malabar region, with the abundance of mussels available in the area. This is not any traditional recipe from that area, but some ingredients i put together.

Ingredients

1 lb - Mussels / Kallumakai

2 tsp - Red chili powder

1/2 tsp - Turmeric powder

Sesame oil

Salt to taste

Ground to a paste

2 tsp - Mustard seeds

2 tsp - red chili powder

1/4 tsp - Fenugreek powder / Methi powder

1/4 cup - Vinegar

Seasoning

3 sprig - Curry leaves

2 inch - Ginger, minced

10 flakes - Garlic, chopped

5 - Green chili, slit and chopped ( Optional )

Method

1 ) Clean mussels and then marinate it with red chili powder, turmeric powder and salt for 10 minutes.

2 ) Place marinated mussels in a pan, cover and cook it on a low heat. Mussel will cook in it's juice. Once cooked, add oil and fry it well. Transfer the mussels to a plate.

3 ) Add more oil to the pan. Then add curry leaves, green chili , ginger, garlic to the oil and fry till light brown. Add the fried mussels, stir and fry.

4 ) Grind mustard seeds, red chili powder, fenugreek with little vinegar. Add this ground paste to the pan, stir ad cook for 2 - 3 minutes. Add salt to taste. Add rest of the vinegar to the pickle. Add some oil to cut the sharp taste of vinegar. Take off the stove and cool.

Once cool transfer to a sterilized container. Can use after a day. Since vinegar is a good preservative you can store outside for some days. Then refrigerate it.

Some pointer to note when pickling

  • Always use well wiped and dried utensils to store pickle in. Moisture will spoil the pickle.
  • Deep frying meat pickle will make it stay longer to use.
  • Oil acts as a preservative, so use good amount of oil in making pickle.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Puran Poli

Puran poli is a sweet, prepared and served as a snack or a dessert in different parts of India for different occasions. Different stuffing's are used in making poli. I came up with a stuffing with Tapioca, coconut, groundnut and jaggery.

Ingredients

For dough

I cup - Whole wheat flour
1 cup - Maida / all purpose flour
Pinch of salt
Water

For stuffing

1 cup - Cooked Tapioca
1/2 cup - Sweetened coconut flakes or grated coconut
1/2 cup - Roasted groundnut powder
1 cup - Jaggery ( thick syrup )
2 - Cardamom , powdered
Ghee or oil

Preparation

1 ) Cook tapioca in water with little turmeric powder. When well cooked drain off all the water. Mash and make a smooth dough. Set aside.

2 ) Roast groundnut lightly and powder it.

Method

1 ) First make the stuffing.

In a utensil, add mashed tapioca, grated coconut, groundnut powder, cardamom powder and jaggery. Mix in all the ingredients well and make small size balls of it, like in the picture below. If the mixture has more liquid content, then add little roasted rice powder to make thick mixture dough.


Secondly make the dough, like chapati dough.

2 ) Add enough water to make dough, by mix all the ingredients listed. Make small balls of the dough equal to the number of stuffing balls.

3 ) Roll the dough and then place a stuffing ball in center, like the picture below.

4 )Wrap and cover the stuffing ball with the dough fully.

5 ) Roll out the dough with a rolling pin, as thin as possible.

6 ) Heat a pan and place the rolled out poli in the pan. Cook on both sides. Smear some ghee or oil on both sides. Take off the pan and serve in a serving plate.

Enjoy this puran poli as a snack.

Check out the recipe at Neivedyam for puran poli with a different stuffing.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Pazham Pori - Ripe Plantain Fritters


This snack is very popular in kerala. Quick and easy to make.

Ingredients

3 - Ripe plantains
1 cup - Rice flour
3 tbsp - Maida / all purpose flour
3 tbsp - Sugar
a pinch or two - Turmeric powder
a pinch - salt
oil to fry

Method

1) Peel the skin off the ripe plantain and cut into two parts. Then cut each part into 3- 4 slices,lengthwise.

2 )Mix rice powder, maida, sugar, turmeric powder and salt. Make a thick batter.

3) Heat oil in a deep frying pan. Dip the sliced plantains in the batter and deep fry till golden brown in colour.

Serve with evening tea.

Variation

With the sliced ripe plantain....Heat ghee or butter in a non-stick pan. Fry the slices on both side till light brown in colour.Drain and place on a serving plate. Sprinkle some sugar on the fried plantains and serve.

Also try pazham pori in slightly different batter. Check the recipe
here

Friday, March 09, 2007

Mutton Pickle

Pickling meat comes in handy for those lazy days when you don't want to cook an elaborate meal. So then you can cook some rice and have with pickle and maybe some yogurt.

Ingredients

500 gm - Boneless mutton, cut to small pieces

Masala

1 tbsp - Ginger paste

1 tbsp - Garlic paste

1/2 tsp - Turmeric powder

4 tbsp - Coriander powder

1 tsp - Black pepper powder

1 tsp - Red chili powder

1 tsp - fennel seeds

Roast and powder

5 - cloves

2 - Cinnamon stick

1 - Star Anise

Seasoning

2 to 3 sprigs - Curry leaves

5 - whole dry red chili

1/4 tsp - Asafoetida / Hing

1/2 cup - vinegar

Salt to taste

Method

1 ) Heat good amount of oil in a heavy bottom pan. Add ginger - garlic paste and fry till ginger- garlic is lightly browned.Then add turmeric powder, red chili powder, black pepper powder, coriander powder and fennel seeds. Fry on low heat for a minute.

2 ) Add mutton pieces, stir and mix in well with the spices. Add little water and salt to taste. Simmer and cook the meat till well cooked. Add oil and fry meat till lightly browned.

3 ) Heat oil in a pan. Add curry leaves, whole red chili, hing, roasted powder (star anise, clove and cinnamon ). Fry for a minute. Add to the meat, fry and mix in well. Then add vinegar and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Take off the stove and cool.

Put the pickle in a sterilized container. Start using pickle after a day or two of preparing it. Refrigerate after a day outside. All the masala will settle into the meat by then.

Some pointers when making pickle

  • Always use well wiped and dried utensil for cooking and storing pickle in.
  • Use more oil while making pickle. Oil acts as a preservative. So its good if some oil floats on top of the pickle bottle.
  • By frying meat well, you can store meat pickle for longer time.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Mango Kadhi with Onion Pakoda


Yummy yummy mango kadhi, relished with onion pakoda's. Kadhi's are very popular in northern India. This kadhi is sweet and sour in taste. You can enjoy this kadhi, on it's own.

First make Onion pakoda and keep it ready.

Ingredients

1 cup - Bengal gram flour / Besan

1 big - Onion, chopped

1/4 tsp - Turmeric powder

1/4 tsp - Red chili powder

1/4 tsp - Ajwain

Salt to taste

Method

1 ) In a bowl make a thick paste of besan, turmeric powder, red chili powder, ajwain and salt to taste with water.

2 ) Add chopped onions to the besan mixture and mix in well.

3 ) Heat oil in a wok or kadai. Take a small amount of prepared mixture and add to oil and fry to golden brown color. Strain and keep aside. In the same way make pakoda's with rest of the mixture.

You can serve this onion pakoda / fritters as a snack. Now for this recipe, keep pakoda's aside, to add later to mango kadhi.

This is similar to how cauliflower pokoda is made. Have a look to see pics....

Mango Kadhi

Ingredients to make mango kadhi

2 - Ripe mangoes, peel the skin & cut to pieces

2 cups - Yogurts / curds

2 tbsp - Besan / Bengal gram flour

1/2 tsp - Turmeric powder

1.5 cup - Water

For Seasoning

1 tsp - Mustard seeds (optional)

1/2 tsp - Jeera / Cumin seeds

1/4 tsp - Asafoetida/ hing

1 sprig - Curry leaves

2 - Whole dry red chili

1/4 tsp - Fenugreek seeds/ Uluva / methi

1 tbsp - Ginger & green chili paste

1/2 bunch - Coriander leaves, chopped

1 tsp - Sugar

Salt to taste

Method

1 ) Add mango pieces to a blender and blend to a smooth paste. Add yogurt, besan, turmeric powder and salt to taste to the blender. Run the blender and mix the ingredients well.

2 ) Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard. After mustard pops, add jeera, asafoetida, curry leaves, whole red chili , and fenugreek seeds. Fry for a minute on low heat.

3 ) Add ginger - green chili paste and fry for a minute or two. Now add the mango mixture, water and sugar. Bring to a boil, simmer and stir. Add chopped coriander leaves to the kadhi . Cook for 2 - 3 minutes on low heat. The consistency of the kadhi should be like a thick soup. Take off the stove.

4 ) Add the prepared onion pakoda's to the mango kadhi. Immerse pakoda's in the kadhi.

Serve hot with basmati rice.

Mango Kadhi is so similar in taste to mambazha pulissery of kerala.