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Sunday, October 28, 2007

Coconut Almond Cookie

Cookies anyone ?? A mix of coconut and almond enriches the taste of this cookie.


1 cup - All purpose flour
3/4 cup - Almond powder ( not very fine powder, a bit coarsely powdered without the skin )
1/2 cup - Fresh coconut, finely grated
1/2 cup - Unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup - Sugar
Few Almond slivers for decorating


1 ) In a mixing bowl, mix and the ingredients together to form a dough. Preheat oven at 350 F.

2 ) Make small balls of the dough, flatten and place them on baking tray. Leave some space between them. Place a almond sliver in the middle of the dough and gently press in.

3 ) Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, till the bottom of the cookie turns light golden in color. Cookie will be soft to touch, but will harden as it cools.

4 ) Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack.

Serve as a snack.

Check out this simple cookie too.

Note - I have put together ingredients & created this recipe. Please do not copy, reproduce or blog this recipe.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Naranga / Lemon Curry

Naranga curry or Lemon pickle curry is traditionally served as a pickle along with other dishes on a the banana leaf for onasadhya or any sadhya.


4 - Yellow Lemon
6 to 8 - Green chili, cut round
1/2 cup ( 4 oz ) - Water
Salt to taste
Sesame oil

Seasoning powders

4 tsp - Red chili powder
4 pinches - Fenugreek powder
1/4 tsp - Asafoedita / Hing


1 ) Take off the skin from the lemon, cut to small pieces. Marinate cut lemon pieces with green chili and salt. Keep aside for half an hour.
2 ) Keep powders mixed and ready. Warm 4 tsp sesame oil, add the powders and mix. Take care not to burn the powders. Do on low heat. Add water and bring to a good boil for a minute.

3 ) Add marinated lemon pieces and bring to a boil. Turn off stove. When cool store in a glass bottle and keep it refrigerated. Always use a dry spoon to serve. Start using from the next day.

Serve as a pickle with rice.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Strawberry Fig Jam

Trying out home made jam with different fruits has been thrilling, especially when the jam tastes so good. When making jam without commercial pectin, use fruits that are naturally high in pectin. When the natural pectin level is low in a fruit used for making jam, then combine with fruits that have high level of natural pectin in them. Apple, berries, citrus fruits have high level of natural pectin in them. Using 25 % under ripe fruit also helps, as it is high in pectin than fully ripe fruit. Strawberry and fig have low level of natural pectin in them. Adding fruits with naturally high pectin will help in thickening the jam. Dry golden fig has been used to make this jam.


1.5 cup - Mashed Strawberry
15 - Dry fig, chopped very finely
1 cup - Sugar
Juice from one orange
Juice from half a lime


1 ) To a heavy bottom pan, add mashed strawberry, fig, sugar, orange juice and lime juice. On a medium high heat, stir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 10 to 12 minutes. While cooking, mash strawberry and fig with a potato masher to further mash the ingredients.

2 ) Cook till thick bubbles start forming and the jam reaches a semi-liquid consistency. Turn off the stove.

3 ) After the jam cools down a bit and when still warm pour the jam into sterilized glass jars. In the glass jar the jam will settle down and thicken up even more, when it has completely cooled down.

4 ) Store in the refrigerator after completely cooling down.

Serve spread on a toast with butter.

Check out other jams

Monday, October 22, 2007

Aval Upma

A quick and easy upma to make, if you have the ingredients ready. I love to have this upma with boiled eggs, seasoned with pepper and salt on the side. Sometimes i mix scrambled egg with the upma in the end. On it's own, it's a tasty upma. Aval is the malayalam name for poha / rice flakes.


2 cups - Beaten rice / Aval / Poha / Rice flakes
1 cup - Water
5 big - Shallots, chopped
4 to 6 - Green chili, chopped
1/4 cup - Freshly grated coconut
Salt to taste


1 tsp - Mustard seeds
1 tsp - Urad dal
2 Sprigs - Curry leaves
Coconut or sesame oil


1 ) First moisten beaten rice. For this, add salt to taste to one cup of water and stir. Now sprinkle water on the beaten rice little by little and moisten beaten rice well. Beaten rice will soak up the water little by little. Use up one cup water to moisten beaten rice and keep it ready.

2 ) Heat oil in a swallow pan, add mustard seeds and pop mustard. Then add urad dal, curry leaves, stir for a minute. Add shallots and chili and fry to a light brown color. Simmer heat to a low and add moisten beaten rice mix with seasoned ingredients. Add grated coconut, cover with a tight lid and cook for 5 minutes on very low heat. Turn off the stove, open the lid only after 5 minutes. Stir and mix.

Serve hot. Makes a great breakfast.

Note : Aval will lose moisteness and become dry if you have this after 2 - 3 hours of cooking. Best when still warm. If dry, you can sprinkle some water and microwave.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Nadan Kozhi Curry

This chicken curry is more of a dry preparation, with less gravy. Cooking with coconut oil, imparts a very nadan taste along with other masala powders. If you have a mannchatty ( earthen pot ) to prepare; then cooking in this earthen pot will enhance the flavours.


1.5 lb - Chicken, cut to pieces
2 to 4 - Green chili , slit in center
1/2 tsp - Black pepper powder
1 tbsp - Lemon / Lime juice
Salt to taste
Coconut oil

To dry roast & marinate

6 tbsp - Coriander powder
2 tsp - Red chili powder
1/2 tsp - Turmeric powder
1 tsp - Garam masala powder

Coarsely grind

10 medium size - Shallots, chopped
1'' piece - Ginger, chopped
5 big flakes - Garlic


1/2 bunch - Coriander leaves, chopped
3 sprigs - Curry leaves


1 ) In a pan dry roast the masala powders listed on a low heat. With little water, make a paste of the roasted powders. Add salt to taste. Apply this marinade on the cleaned and cut chicken pieces. Marinate for 1 to 2 hours.

2 ) Heat oil in a shallow utensil or mannchatty, add green chili, black pepper powder and curry leaves. Fry for a second, then add the coarsely ground ingredients and fry lightly. Add marinated chicken and stir and mix. Cover with a tight lid and cook on low heat till the chicken is fully cooked.

3 ) Add lemon juice, stir and mix. Adjust salt as to taste. Garnish with coriander leaves.

Serve with rice or chapati.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Tea Cake - To Rejoice a Year of Blogging !

Blogging has been so addictive for the past year and can't believe, it's been a year of blogging. Always there has been a passion in me to try new / traditional recipes and serve it to my dear and near ones, eagerly wait for their reactions. Now sharing what i cook through blogging, i eagerly wait for the same reactions. So I thank each and every visitor, who come by every time i post a recipe and encourage me with positive words. Also to those very readers who try my recipes and give me a feed back, i can't thank them enough.
Rejoicing a year of blogging with a tea cake, which is moist, soft and yummy. This cake brings back memories of childhood, when mom baked cake at home in a bundt Cake pan. I have used a 8'' spring form cake pan to bake this cake.


1 cup - All purpose flour
3/4 cup - Sugar
3/4 cup (1.5 stick ) - Unsalted butter, softened at room temp
2 - Eggs, at room temperature
3/4 tsp - Baking powder
1 tsp - Vanilla extract
4 tsp - Warm milk


1 ) Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Generously butter pan and dust with flour, shake off excess flour.

2) In a bowl, sift together flour and baking powder, two times.

3 ) In a blender, cream butter until fluffy. Add sugar and continue to beat for 5 minutes. Add egg one at a time and beat well after each addition. Add vanilla extract and beat well.

4 ) Pour the creamed ingredients to the shifted flour in the bowl. Mix and whisk the flour and creamed ingredients. Add warm milk, mix and whisk in a clock wise direction, very well till you see air bubbles in the batter.

5 ) Pour the batter into the cake pan and level the batter. Bake for 25 minutes or until done. You can insert a wooden pick in the center of the cake to test if the cake is fully baked. Cool in pan for 30 minutes. Then invert cake onto cooling rack to cool completely.

A delicious tea time companion.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Chana Dal Curry

A simple, yet a tasty chana dal curry.


1 cup - Chana dal
1 cup - Freshly grated coconut
1/4 tsp - Red chili powder
1/4 tsp - Turmeric powder
About 1'' piece - Tamarind, seedless
Salt to taste


1/2 tsp - Mustard seed
1/4 tsp - Jeera
1 sprig - Curry Leaf
2 - Dry whole red chili
2 pinches - Asafoetida / hing (optional)
2 to 3 flakes - Garlic, crushed


1 ) Soak chana dal for one to two hours. This helps in reducing cooking time. Cook dal in 4 cups water on low heat till 3/4 th cooked.

2 ) Warm tamarind in little water, in the microwave and soften it. Add to the cooking dal. Then add red chili powder, turmeric powder and salt to taste. Cook till the dal is fully cooked.

3 ) Add grated coconut and mix with dal. Cook till water evaporates and reaches a thick gravy consistency. Take off the stove.

4 ) Heat oil in a pan, pop mustard, then add jeera, garlic, red chili, hing and curry leaves. Pour the seasoning onto the chana dal curry.

Serve with rice or roti.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Green Olive Pickle

Green olives blends in well with the pickle masala and along with garlic makes a good pickle to try. A friend of mine had an extra bottle of olives in hand and came up with this idea of making instant pickle with green olives.


6 oz bottle - Pitted green olives, cut into two
10 flakes - Garlic, chopped ( use more if you like garlic)
1 tbsp - Red chili powder
2 to 3 pinches - Fenugreek powder
1/4 tsp - Asafoetida powder / Hing
1 tbsp - Vinegar (optional)
Salt to taste
Sesame oil


1 ) Heat 3 tbsp oil in a pan, add garlic and fry lightly. Then add red chili powder, fenugreek powder, hing and stir for a second on low heat. Add green olives and mix with the masala. Take off the stove.

2 ) Taste to check if you need more salt. Since olives are soaked in salt, use less salt if needed. Add vinegar and mix. Store in a glass jar. Use after 2 - 3 hours, by then the masala will settle and mix well with olives.

Serve with rice or roti.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Cherupayar Kaya Puzhukku

Made with green gram dal and unripe plantain, this is a tasty puzhukku.


2 cups - Green gram dal
1 - Unripe plantain, chopped with the skin
Salt to taste

Coarsely grind

1 cup - Grated coconut
1 to 2 - Shallot
4 to 5 - Green chili
1/2 tsp - Cumin seeds


1 tsp - Mustard seeds
2 sprigs - Curry leaves


1 ) In a pressure cooker, cook green gram dal and plantain with 4 cups water. Add salt to taste. After the first whistle, lower heat and cook for 5 minutes. Turn off the stove, cool and open the cooker.

2 ) Coarsely grind ingredients listed without any water. Add the ground mixture to the cooked green gram dal. Mix well. Add little water if there is no water after cooking green gram dal. Keep the cooker back on stove and just cook for a minute, so the ground ingredients are lightly cooked. Turn the stove off.

3 ) Heat a pan with coconut oil / sesame oil. Add mustard seeds and pop, then add curry leaves. Pour the seasoning over the puzhukku.

Serve with Kanji or rice or chapati.

Also check out Cherupayar Kaya Erissery

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Kantola Subzi

Kantola is a Indian gourd, which i was not familiar with, until i came across it in the freezer section in the Indian store. It's mildly bitter in taste, but nothing like the bitter gourd bitterness.You can simply fry it in oil, sprinkle some red chilly powder and salt, which makes a tasty kantola fry.


12 oz / 340 gm - Kantola, chopped
1/2 tsp - Crushed red chili powder,
1/4 tsp - Turmeric powder
1/2 tsp - Garam masala powder
2 medium - Shallots, chopped
4 to 6 big flakes - Garlic, crushed


1/2 tsp - Mustard seeds
1/4 tsp - Jeera seeds
1 sprig - Curry leaves


1 ) Heat a pan with oil, add mustard seed and let it pop. Then add jeera, curry leaves, shallots, garlic and fry lightly. Then add red chili, turmeric and garam masala powder. Stir and mix.

2 ) Add kantola and mix with all the masala. Add salt to taste, sprinkle little water and cook on a low heat, covered with a lid. Once the kantola is cooked, add little more oil and stir fry. Take off the stove and serve.

Serve with rice or chapati.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Raspberry Jam

After trying out blackberry jam and discovering how tasty a home made jam can taste. My next attempt was to make raspberry jam and this jam sure is a home runner for it's taste, texture & ease to make this jam.


1/2 cup - Mashed Raspberry ( 6 oz yields 1/2 cup mashed berry)
1 - Grated Apple ( red delicious apple )
3/4 cup - Sugar


1 ) To a saucepan, add mashed raspberry, grated apple and sugar. On a medium high heat, stir and cook for 10 minutes. Ingredients will cook together and a bit of foaming layer can be seen forming. Lower the heat to medium and cook till thick bubbles start forming. Cook till the jam reaches a semi-liquid consistency. Turn off the stove.

2 ) After the jam cools down a bit and when still warm pour the jam into sterilized glass jars. In the glass jar the jam will settle down and thicken up even more, when it has completely cooled down.

3 ) Store in the refrigerator after completely cooling down.

Spread jam on a bread and serve.

Check out Blackberry jam and see some detailed pictures.

Note : If you prefer your jam a bit less sweeter, you can reduce the sugar to 1/2 cup.