Wednesday, August 30, 2006


Kerala Style Sambar

Sambar is a lentil based dish common in South India. In Kerala the Sambar would contain different vegetables, which is similar to avial recipe. During one of our potlucks, one of my friend made this recipe and it tasted something similar to my mom makes. So instead of making an ISD call to get the recipe, I got the recipe from my friend. Here goes the recipe!!

What you need

  • Vegetables: Cooked potatoes, egg plant, drumstick, okra, and carrot (You can add any veggies you like)
  • Lime Size tamarind soaked in warm water
  • 1 cup toor dal pressure cooked with turmeric, mash the dal to a smooth paste.

Sambar Masala

  • Sauté handful of coriander seeds (4-5 tsp of coriander seeds), asafetida, and 4-5 red chilies in a pan without oil and keep aside. In the same pan sauté 4-5 tsp of shredded coconut until it turns to brown color.
  • Grind coriander seeds, asafetida, red chilies, coconut, and 1 tomato into a paste.


  • In a pan add oil; sauté mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and curry leaves.
  • Add handful of chopped shallots or pearl onions and sauté until it turns translucent.
  • Add the vegetable and little water and cover cook them for few minutes .Add the tamarind water and cook for few minutes.
  • Add the boiled potatoes, cooked dal, and sambar masala paste.
  • Mix everything and add required salt for taste. Cook in Medium heat for another 10 minutes and turn off the heat.
  • You can also add red chili powder as per your taste before cooking.
Serve hot with rice, idly, and dosa.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006


Idiyappam (Rice Noodles)

Idiyappam is one dish I make quite often at home for breakfast or dinner. It takes less time to make and very tasty to eat. Idiyappam and Stew or Idiyappam and Chicken curry are the best combo for me. My mom makes Idiyappam in a hard way; she soaks rice in water for some hours then dries it, then grinds it to make fine powder. Since we are comforted with all the flours why to do the hard way!! Here goes the recipe :)


  • Mix 1 cup of rice flour with required warm water and salt.
  • Knead into smooth dough. Apply little oil over the dough and insert into the cooking press.
  • Put a small quantity of dough into the “cooking press" and press it on the idly moulds greased with oil. Add grated coconut on top of the idiyappam.
  • Steam the idly cooker for 8-10 minutes.

Serve hot with the curry you like:) I had it with Vegetable Kurma.

This is my entry for Weekend Breakfast Blogging #4 hosted by Pavani

Look for Idiyappam recipes from fellow bloggers
Towards a Better Tomorrow
Salt and Pepper

Saturday, August 26, 2006


Modakam ( steam-cooked rice dumplings)

Sweet and Spicy Modakams
The modakas (Kozhakatta -sweet as well as spicy) are prepared and placed in front of Ganesh idols/photo in the house. Modak is a ritual sweet dish, specially prepared on the day of Ganesh Chaturthi. Today I made sweet as well as spicy modakam for Lord Ganesh. I think the shape of the modakam looks different like a cone and I made shapes which looks like a ball. The sweet Modakam is made of coconut and jaggery (brown sugar) but I tried the filling with chana dal and jaggery. Here goes the recipe!!!

Sweet Filling

  • Sauté 1 cup of rice flour in a pan without oil for few minutes.
  • Allow the flour to cool down. Add warm water with salt to the rice flour and make into mini balls.

For the Filling

  • Pressure cook 1cup of chana dal with ½ cup of water. Switch off after 2 whistles. Drain the chana dal and use the water for making the rice dough.
  • I used chana dal water to make the rice dough. Grind the chana dal and 1 cup jaggery in a mixie/blender to a smooth paste with few cardamoms.
Chana dal, Rice dough, and Jaggery

Chana dal and Jaggery grinded into a paste

To make sweet dumplings

  • With help of your hand press the mini rice balls into flat surface like puris.
  • In the center of the rice dough add a tsp of chana dal filling and bring the rice dough together and make a ball.
  • Roll it nicely and make nice shapes of balls with help of your palm. You might need oil—so have little oil while making these balls.
  • Steam cook the sweet dumplings. I used idly moulds to steam cook the modakams.

Spicy Modakams

  • Heat the pan with oil; add mustard, urad dal, chana dal, few broken red chilies, and curry leaves.
  • Add half cup of water, salt, and allow it to boil. Add 1 cup of rice flour and make to a thick paste. Turn off the heat and allow it to cool.
  • Make them into mini balls (if it is dry, add some warm water to it to make balls) with help of your hand, and steam cook the spicy modakam’s.

It also serves as a good snack for the evening Tea or Coffee.


Happy Ganesh Chaturthi

Wishing everyone a Happy Ganesh Chaturthi !!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


Padavalanga Thoran ( Snake Gourd Fry )

I don’t see snake gourd often at the grocery stores, usually it comes during the summer season. Whenever I see snake gourd I try to pick them and make some dish with it. I am not a big fan of snake gourd, but I see this vegetable only on certain seasons so I buy them. This recipe I learned from my mom and here goes the recipe!!


  • To Grind: ¼ cup coconut, 3 green chilies, 2 garlic pod, ½ tsp turmeric, ½ tsp cumin, and few curry leaves.
  • Clean the snake gourd and finely chop them into small pieces. ( I used 1 snake gourd to make this recipe)
  • Heat oil in a non-stick pan; splutter mustard seeds, cumin seeds, 2 dry chilies, and few curry leaves. Add the chopped snake gourd and cover cook for few minutes. Once it is half cooked add the ground paste and salt; mix everything together and cook for another 3 minutes uncovered. Once it is cooked, turn off heat and serve hot with rice :)

Also look at Ingi’s Padavalangha thoran

Tuesday, August 22, 2006


Kozhi Porichathu (Fried Chicken)

Kozhi Porichathu or Fired chicken is another popular food among Keralites; the chicken is marinated with red chili paste, rice flour, and fired in oil. I fried and broiled in the oven for sometime for more crispiness. I learned this recipe from my dad who is a great cook when it comes to non-vegetarian recipes. My dad had hard time managing me and my sister when it comes to cooking chicken legs. I always wanted chicken legs to be deep fried and more crisper. My sister always wanted the chicken legs to be cooked well and she hates deep frying and crispiness. Most of the time my dad always cooked the way I wanted and my sister always felt that my dad is partial to me though I fail in all the exams. My sister has always been the outstanding student in her studies and me on the other side, I hate books and school :( but still I am the dad’s child. I would say it is an ever lasting fight even now, she always feel my dad pets me a lot compared to her. Well these things started from such small issues and she takes it serious! When I make such recipes I go back to the treasured moments of our childhood and feel happy about it :) oops!!! I think I am getting emotional now- let me go on to recipe :)

To marinate the chicken

  • Wash the chicken with salt thoroughly and add ½ tsp of turmeric powder and keep it aside for 10 minutes.
  • Add 3- 4 tsp of ginger-garlic paste, 2 tsp red chili powder, salt for taste, ½ turmeric, ½ tsp pepper powder, and 1tsp tandoori masala (optional), 1 tsp rice flour and marinate overnight or for 1 hr in the refrigerator.


  • Heat the non-stick pan at medium heat and add 4- 5 tsp of oil. Add the chicken drumsticks one by one and cover the lid. Cook for 25- 30 minutes by flipping the chicken legs now and then every few minutes for the chicken to cook thoroughly.

  • Broil the oven at high and broil for 4 minutes one side and again broil the other side of the chicken for another 4 minutes.

Serve hot with rice or have as starters :)

Monday, August 21, 2006


Vegetable Cutlet

I did some changes to my template to give a new look. I here means (my friend) who helped me to do the changes in my blog, and I thank her so much for taking time to work on my blog. Last weekend we had potluck in my friends place and guess what we had for the menu? We decided to have a simple potluck and planned to go with Tiffin varieties. The menu went like this: Cutlet as starters, Masala dosa, Pongal, Sambhar, Tomato chutney, and Ela ada. We just wanted to take a break from the normal routines like Pulav’s, chapattis, desserts and so on. After a long time I felt more like eating at home :) and was more relaxing for all of us. I decided to make Vegetable Cutlet and Ela ada; here goes the recipe for Cutlet!!!

What you need

  • Vegetables of your liking
  • Breadcrumbs
  • For dipping the cutlets: 1 tsp All-purpose flour or Maida mixed in warm water or egg white.
How to make
  • Choose vegetable of your liking, I chose 2 big potatoes, 1 raw banana, 1 carrot, few beans, handful of green peas. Boil all the vegetables in microwave and allow it to cool.
  • Mash the vegetables in a whisk or with your hand. Add a tsp of ginger-garlic paste, 3-4 chopped green chilies, ½ tsp of garam masala, ½ tsp red chili powder, and salt for taste. Mix everything together and make into small shapes.

  • Mean while make breadcrumbs. Toast the bread and grind the bread with help of a mixer or blender.
  • Dip the cutlet shapes into the flour water. Mix a tsp of maida or all-purpose flour in 5-6 tsp of water. You can also use egg white instead of flour mix.
  • Coat the cutlet with breadcrumbs and fry in a non-stick pan with little oil.

Serve hot with tomato ketchup.

Thursday, August 17, 2006


Ribbon Pakoda : Savoury Snack

Yesterday I was chatting with my friend about Shree Krishna Jayanthi. As we were discussing, the topic went to the dishes we make for the festivals. She mentioned about Ribbon Pakoda, which they make for the festivals. I was all interested to know about it and got the recipe from her. I was enlightened by the recipe, since we have to use only rice flour and besan flour. The recipe was very simple to make, hence I decided to make for the evening snack. Here goes the recipe!!!

What we need:

  • 2 cups of Rice flour, 1cup of Besan flour (Chickpeas flour), 2 tsp ginger-garlic paste (optional), 2 tsp red chili powder, 2tsp sesame seeds, 1 tsp hot oil, salt for taste, and water to mix the flour.

How to make the dough:

  • Combine rice flour, besan flour, ginger-garlic paste, sesame seeds, red chili powder, 1 tsp hot oil, and salt. Add required amount of water and make dough. Keep it aside.
  • Take small quantity of dough and insert into the cooking press and fry them in hot oil. Do this batch by batch and store it in a container. The oil should be hot when you are deep frying the pakoda.

This is my entry for weekend curry mela of Anthonys Kitchen

Wednesday, August 16, 2006


Ashtami Rohini/Shree Krishna Jayanthi: Palpayasam

Ashtami Rohini also known as Gokulashtami or Sri Krishna Jayanti or Janmashtami, is the birthday of Lord Krishna. The birthday of Lord Krishna is celebrated with great importance on this day. It is held in the month of Chingam (Aug- Sept). Devotees visit the Krishna temples where special Pooja and cultural programs are held. Appam and Palpayasam (cakes of rice paste and jaggery) are considered to be Lord's favorite food .The houses are also decorated with special care. Patterns of small feet, drawn with rice flour are made, leading from the house entrance to the puja room, where the idol of Lord Krishna is kept. This symbolizes the baby Krishna coming to his devotees' house to bless them and leaving behind his footsteps. Today I made Palpayasam for the Guruvayurappan :) This is also my entry for JFI # 5 - Milk and Milk Products- Vineela’s Cuisine. Here goes the recipe!!


Add 3 cups of Whole milk to a vessel (avoid non-stick pan) and bring to boil. To this add ¾ cup of sugar and bring to boil. Now add ½ cup of red rice or raw rice washed into the milk. Add crushed cardamom to it and mix it well. Cook in a medium heat until the rice is cooked. It will take 30- 40 minutes, so be patient and keep mixing once in few minutes, the end results are worth waiting. When it is almost cooked, take a small pan, add 4- 5tsp of ghee and sauté cashews and raisins and add them to the payasam. Once the rice is cooked turn off heat and serve hot.

Pooja at Home

Look at Ingi Pennu's Palpayasam

Monday, August 14, 2006


Happy Independence Day

Wishing you all a Happy Independence Day!!

Sunday, August 13, 2006


Ela Ada: Steamed Sweet Coconut in Rice Flat Cakes

I first thank Suryafor giving the idea to use parchment paper instead of banana leaves to make this dish. For a long time I was craving for this dish after coming to the U.S. I used to check the grocery stores for the arrival of banana leaves for some occasion and so far I have never seen banana leaf’s in the Indian grocery stores. When I saw the recipe recently inSurya blog I was so happy because I got a way to make this dish in the U.S. using parchment paper.Ela Ada is a traditional Kerala recipe and we eat this for break fast.It is made of coconut and brown sugar (jaggery), which is layered inside the rice paste. Later the paste is folded with the banana leaf and steam cooked in an earthen pot or idly mould vessel.Ela ada can be made in wheat and rice flour. My mom makes with rice flour and she fills it with coconut and jaggery and also one filling just with coconut which is also called as “Poovada”. Since our family size was big and my mom had to manage work and family life, she makes this recipe on special occasions. She had to soak the rice, dry them and grind them to make this recipe, nowadays we are blessed with the ready made flours. I used rice flour to make this recipe and it is pretty easy to make. I always had a nostalgic feeling to this recipe and here it goes!!

Making the rice dough
In a pan slightly roast 1 cup of rice flour and keep it aside. Once it is cooled down, add required warm water with salt to make nice dough. Remember it should be in the form of dough and not a batter or watery consistency.

In a skillet, melt the brown sugar with a tablespoon of water and add the grated coconut. Cook for 5- 10 minutes over medium heat, stirring constantly. When the mixture starts to thicken, remove from the heat and cool to room temperature.

How to make Ela ada

Cut parchment paper into small sizes.
Spread a ladleful of rice dough evenly on the parchment paper; use your hands to spread the rice dough. Place a tablespoon of sweetened coconut over this and spread it evenly. Fold the parchment paper in the middle and press the sides with to close it well.

Place the parchment paper flat in a steamer and steam the packets for 15 to 20 minutes. I used idly moulds to steam the Ela ada

Remove them from the steamer, peel off the parchment paper, and serve hot with tea.

This is my entry for the Independence day food parade by Indira

Friday, August 11, 2006


Supereasy Pulav: Potato and Peas Pulav

When I go to college I try to eat in the Cafeteria because of the live ness. Few weeks back I happen to make few friends in the cafeteria. So we started to meet everyday for lunch and started to share about classes, teachers and on. We were a group of three; one was from Japan. For the last day of the class we all decided to meet early so that we can share our email ids, phone numbers and talk for sometime. One buddy had potluck in her class on the last day of class and decided to bring pulav. Usually many teachers organize potluck on the last day of class, which is more fun and I like it. So my buddy brought pulav to everyone and it tasted yummy. So me, and the girl from Japan started to write down the recipe and were surprised to see that the recipe was so simple to make, yet it tasted delicious. As soon as I came home I made this pulav with Kurma. Here goes the recipe!!


  • Heat the rice cooker pan with oil, 1tsp mustard seeds, 1 tsp cumin seeds, ½ tsp sweet cumin (saunf), 2-3 cinnamon sticks, 2 cloves, and 2-3 bay leafs. Sauté them and add 1 Onion finely copped, ½ cup green peas, 1 chopped potato, ¼ tsp red chili powder, and 1tsp garam masala. Sauté everything together; add salt and 1 cup of Basmati rice and 1 ¾- 2 cup of water and plug on the rice cooker. I added few mint leaves (optional); I like the aroma and flavor of mint leaves.
  • Serve hot with Kurma (curry) and raita.

Friday, August 04, 2006


Kaalan: Bottle gourd (Churakka ) Curry

Kaalan is a Keralite dish made of yogurt and coconut with vegetable like nendraphalazam (plantain), raw banana (paccha Kai) or chena (yam). After seeing the recipe on Mahanadi- Bottle Gourd in Yogurt I was so tempted to have this curry with bottle gourd. Kaalan is thick gravy and it tastes sour, and it is served as part of Ona Sadhya. The end result of this recipe is mouth watering and it goes well rice and pappadam.


  • Grind the mixture: ½ cup coconut, 1tsp cumin seeds and 4 green chilies
  • Heat the pan with oil; add 1 cup of finely chopped bottle gourd, ½ tsp turmeric and cover cook for 5 minutes until the bottle gourd gets cooked. Add little water while cooking.
  • Once the bottle gourd is cooked, add the ground paste and 1 – 1 ½ cup of sour thick buttermilk to this vegetable. Add salt and cook for another four to five minutes. Once it is cooked turn off the heat.
  • In another pan, heat a tsp of coconut oil, mustard seeds, red chilies, ¼ tsp fenugreek seeds, curry leaves and sauté them. Once the mustard starts to splutter add this to the curry and keep it covered to absorb the flavor.

Serve with rice and pappadam