Monday, November 23, 2009

Aval Dosai

This is a simple yet delicious recipe for people who love dosas in any and every form. This batter will yield neither quick nor crispy dosas. But I can assure you that they are absolutely yummy with coriander chutney.

This is what you will need:
Rice - 1 cup
Aval [Puffed Rice] - 1 cup
Salt to taste

And, here's how to prepare the batter:
Wash the rice well and soak in plenty of water for an hour. When you are really pressed for time, 20 minutes of soaking will do.
Repeat the cleaning and soaking routine with the puffed rice as well. Take care to soak them separately because puffed rice grinds faster.
Drain and preserve the water from the soaked rice. You can use a mixer to grind the rice to a very smooth paste. Use a bit of the preserved water if the batter turns out to be very thick.
Finally, drain the water from the puffed rice, add it to the rice batter and grind.
Add salt and mix well.

Note: When you feel the batter in between your fingers, it should not feel grainy.

You can also spice up the batter with finely chopped onions, coriander leaves and green chilies. Ohhhhh, I am already drooling. I guess I know what to make for dinner this weekend. :)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Cabbage baffle

Have you ever made cabbage curry and seen it wither before it has been cooked? Today is the second time it has happened to me. A kilogram of cabbage reduced to just a small bowl of curry!!The first time it happened, I figured I had added salt too early in the cooking process. This morning I was really careful to add salt only after the cabbage was nicely done. Imagine my horror when the cabbage again withered and I was left with only a small bowl of curry. I mentioned this to my mom in our chat session and she tells me that while picking cabbages I need to make sure the leaves are densly packed and the cabbage feels heavy. Damn! I always thought the ones that feel fluffy are the fresh and best ones. Better late than never I suppose.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Chance Penne

Few days back, while chatting with my best friend, she mentioned pasta and that is when I decided on a Saturday night soup-pasta dinner. Little did I imagine that Zeus would try to spoil it all. Little did he know that come rain, come shine, my hubby and I do grocery/vegetable shopping over the weekends [he he he he :D].

We went out to the local super market and got all that I'd need to make pasta. I was very pleased with myself, until I realized that the spark plug in the bike had soaked through and the bike wouldn't start. Such things do happen so I took a rickshaw home.

I finally put the penne to boil and started chopping veggies. But things were not meant to go smoothly. Yes, the power went out!grrrr. I wanted to chuck the saucepan. No,I wasn't going to give up on a pasta dinner. I was considering using torch light and candles to get through, when the lights came back on. I guess when you want something badly, things just fall into place. Well, atleast a stomach full of yummy home made pasta makes you think such stuff!

Home made Penne with White Sauce

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Sambhar without tamarind

I understand anyone will get bored eating the same food everyday. Imagine getting borrrrred cooking the same food day in, day out! My husband loves sambhar and I being a novice knew just about two sambhar recipes. Using different vegetables was the utmost variation I could manage.
I was always under the impression that tamarind extract is a must in any kind of sambhar. That is probably why I was skeptical when my mother-in-law [amma in all future blogs] told me about this simple variation, during one of my rantings about having to cook the same stuff everyday.


Onion - 1, chopped into medium sized pieces
Tomatoes - 2, one finely chopped and one blanched and pureed
Thoor dal - 1 big cup
Sambhar powder - 1 heaped tablespoon
Mustard seeds - 1/4 teaspoon
Urad dal - 1/4 teaspoon
Salt - as required
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Curry leaves - few
Oil - 1 tablespoon

Here's how you make the sambhar. Pressure cook the thoor dal along with turmeric powder and enough water. Heat the oil in a kadai and temper mustard and urud dal. Add the curry leaves just as the urud dal turns golden brown. Add the onions and fry till translucent. Add the chopped and pureed tomatoes. Allow to cook for few minutes. Add salt and sambhar powder. Fry for 15-20 secs and add the boiled thoor dal. Pour a small cup of water and allow to boil for 5 minutes. Sambhar without tamarind is ready!!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Just the beginning

For quite sometime now, I have been thinking about setting up my blog - food blog if you can call it that. What with work, MBA exams and home-making, I haven't really gotten down to it. Finally, here I am, all set to blog away.
I have always taken good food for granted, having been blessed with a mom who can cook amazing stuff! Married life has taught me that even a simple meal takes a litre of effort, a pinch of interest and a dash of creativity. I will mainly use my blog to share recipes that I have tried & loved. I might also post stuff that I think are worth sharing.
I keep asking my mom or mom-in-law for recipes that just end up in a book on the kitchen shelf. This morning I vowed to spend my weekends making yummy stuff, recipes and photos of which will be posted here :)