Thursday, September 28, 2006


Moist Chocolate Cake

Back to square one from this week. My college has started and finding no time to sit in front of the computer. I took a break from my assignments to post a recipe. For a long time I wanted to bake a cake. I and my hubby are not sweet lovers, so I don’t get motivated to make cakes or any sweet dishes. After seeing Sudha’s chocolate cake I was all interested to bake a cake. I was crazy to bake the cake in the middle of the night around 12 a.m. and kept in the fridge after baking. I know that’s crazy thing to do...well that’s me. I got this recipe from Chow time’s blog and just followed her steps. Here goes the recipe!!


Sift 3 cups of flour, 6 tablespoon of cocoa powder, 2 tsp of baking soda, ½ tsp salt.

Whisk 2 cups of water, 2 cups of sugar, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 2 tsp vinegar, ½ cup oil. Whisk until the sugar gets dissolved.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well with help of hand mixer. Pour the batter into a greased oven pan or parchment paper lined. I used parchment paper since it is easy to clean.

Pre- heat the oven to 350 F and bake for 35 – 40 minutes. Keep checking once in a while, and insert a tooth pick into the cake, if the tooth pick comes out without sticky of cakes, you are all set. Take the pan from the oven.

Let it cool and keep in the fridge. Serve it cold.

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Friday, September 22, 2006


Lentil dumplings in coconut curry

I got to taste this curry for the first time during my recent visit to India. That time I never bothered to get the recipe for this curry. Few weeks back I went to my friends place and we got to talk about this recipe and she said she makes it in different ways. I know this recipe needs only lentils and coconut so I mailed her asking for the recipe as I was running out of veggies. She promptly replied my mail and that’s how I tried this recipe today. This looks like malai kofta but this curry is made of lentils steamed and cooked in coconut curry sauce. Here goes the recipe!!!

Method to make the lentil dumplings
  • Soak ½ cup chana dal & ½ cup toor dal in water for 2- 3 hours.
  • Grind the dals with 2-3 red chilies, 1 tsp cumin seeds, and salt without adding water. Grind to a coarse paste and not to a thick paste.
  • To the ground paste add ½ big onion finely chopped and mix with the paste. Make lemon size balls with your hands.
  • Arrange the balls on idly moulds and steam cook for 9- 10 minutes until the ball gets cooked.

Making lentil dumpling with coconut curry
  • For the curry heat the pan with 2-3 tsp oil, add mustard, cumin, and curry leaves and saute for few minutes.
  • Add ½ big onion finely chopped, 1 tomato finely chopped, ¼ tsp fenugreek powder, and pinch of asafetida and saute them well.
  • Add 1 ½ tsp chili powder, 3 ½ tsp coriander powder, ½ tsp turmeric powder, lemon size tamarind soaked in 1 cup of water, and salt. Mix everything and cook on low-medium heat for few minutes.
  • Grind ½ - ¾ cup of coconut and pour it to the curry and cook for another few minutes.
  • Slowly drop the lentil dumplings to the curry and cook for another few minutes.

Serve hot with rice :)

See Priya's lentil dumpling curry, Sudha's lentil dumplings in Yogurt sauce
and Manpasand's Lentil soup

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Thursday, September 21, 2006


Chilli Paratha: Baked and Broiled

Until this evening I was in no mood to cook something delicious for dinner. I thought of just making dosa and eat with left over chutneys. Since I dint have much plans for dinner I called my friend and was chatting for while about food blogs. She listed the food she tried and how well it turned out be... so as we were talking Archana’s Chilly crepes came into our topic. She suggested me to give a try since it was a hit at her place. I had tried Archana’s Naan which turned out so delicious, so I gave a try to her chilly crepes. I dint have all the ingredients which she used, so I cooked with the available ingredients and made some changes to recipe. I also broiled at the end to give a crispy texture for the parathas. So those who haven’t tried this recipe do give a try because it is super delicious. I made spicier version by adding masalas. Here goes the recipe!!!!

Method for making Parathas
  • Mix 1 cup of all purpose flour, 1 tsp salt, required amount of water to form a thick batter. Leave it for 10- 15 minutes.
  • Heat a flat pan, pour a ladle full of batter on the pan and spread it evenly like a circle. Spray or apply oil at the edges of the batter. Heat for about a minute and flip to the other side and cook for another minute. For step by step instruction see here. Keep aside and allow them to cool.
  • Cut them into square pieces, I used scissors to cut them into small pieces. Take an oven safe flat pan and put the aluminum foil. Arrange the pieces evenly.
  • Bake at 300 F for 10-12 minutes and broil at high for 3-4 minutes. While broiling keep an eye on the pieces, once it turns little crisper take it out and keep aside.

Method for making Chili Parathas

  • Heat non-stick pan with oil, add 1 onion cut into small pieces, few curry leaves, 1 tsp of ginger, 1 tsp of garlic, 2 green chilies finely chopped, ½ tsp chili powder, 1 tsp coriander powder, ¼ tsp garam masala and sauté them for a minute.
  • Now add 1 green bell pepper finely chopped or chopped length wise. Sauté them for another one minutes until it turns soft.
  • Add 1 big tomato grinded into a paste with ½ tsp soya sauce into the mixture and cook for another one minute.
  • Add the baked and broiled pieces into the mixture and saute them until all the spice covered with pieces.
Serve them hot with raita. I made raita very bland since the chili parathas were spicy. Just added onion, cilantro leaves, yogurt, salt, and mixed them together.

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Wednesday, September 20, 2006


Potato & Peas Cups

What should I call this Snack? Mini Puffs? Samosa? When I served this dish to my hubby this evening he asked me for the recipe name. I told him different names and he was confused and didn’t bother to ask me more about it and ate the snack quitely. So I quickly went and took the Puff pastry from the freezer and saw the recipe name; it had the recipe for Chocolate peanut butter cups and I replaced them as Potato- Peas cups. So that’s how I came up with this name. I just followed the instruction of the pack and just changed the filling. I served this with sweet and sour chutney. Here goes the recipe!!!

For Filling

  • Mash 1 boiled potato with ¼ cup frozen green peas, 1tsp garam masala, 1tsp of crushed cumin and coriander seeds, and salt. You can add any filling of your choice.


  • Unfold pastry sheet on lightly floured surface. Cut the pastry sheets into squares about 3 inches. Press squares into bottoms of muffin-pan cups.
  • Place about 1 tbsp. filling in center of each squares and bake 15-18 min or until it turns into a golden color.

Sweet and Sour Chutney

  • Heat pan with ½ cup of water; add ½ -1 tsp tamarind paste, 5-6 finely chopped dates, ¼ tsp salt, and 3-4 tsp jaggery or brown sugar. Boil them until it reduces to a semi-thick paste. Allow them to cool.
  • Grind the paste with few cilantro, few mint leaves, and 4-5 green chilies. Add water, salt, and sugar according to your taste.
This chutney can be served for any snack. You can use this for bhel puri

See fellow bloggers recipes using pastry sheets: Samosas, Vegetable Puffs, Vegetable puff.

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Tuesday, September 19, 2006


Onion-Tomato Chutney

I don’t know what to call this chutney- it has equal proportion of onions as well as tomatoes, so I call this chutney as Onion-Tomato chutney. I learnt this recipe from my sister in law and its one the easiest chutneys you can make when you are hurry to make something or lazy to cook. Here goes the recipe!!!


  • Heat the pan with oil, add 5-6 red chilies, 2 onions, 2 tomatoes, 5-6 flakes of garlic, 1 spring of curry leaves, few cilantro leaves, and salt.
  • Sauté everything for few minutes until the onion turns light brown and tomato becomes soft.
  • Turn off the heat and allow them to cool..
  • Grind to a smooth paste and serve with idlies or dosas.

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Thursday, September 14, 2006



Today I just took a walk from my house and ended up going to the grocery stores. As I was window shopping I was all interested to make rasmali. So I picked ricotta cheese and half and half from the store. I was introduced to this sweet in my school days by my friends. Most of my friends were from North and this sweet is quite famous out there. When I came to the US everyone told me that this sweet is so easy to make. And believe me this is one of the easiest recipe I came across which is also versatile for its own name. I got this recipe from my friend who directed me today step by step through phone conversation. Here goes the recipe!!!

What you need
  • 15 oz Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese
  • 1 ¼ cup Sugar
  • One pint (473ml) Fat Free Half and Half Milk
  • A pinch of saffron
  • ¼ tsp crushed cardamom seeds
  • ½ tsp rose water (optional)
  • 3-4 tsp blanched almonds
  • 2 tbsp crushed pistachios

To make the syrup or Ras

  • Thicken the half and half by simmering over low heat for few minutes.
  • Add 1 cup sugar, cardamom, rose water, saffron strands, to the half and half. Heat for a few minutes and allow them cool.


  • Mix ¼ cup of sugar with the Ricotta cheese by using a spatula or hand mixer.
  • Spread on the oven safe dish- I used muffin pan. I added 2 spoons of cheese mixture in each cups. To spread evenly in the cups—place the bottom of glass in the cheese mixture or level it with the spoon.

  • Bake at 350 degrees for 35- 40 minutes or until it sets or until it turns light brown. You can also check with help of a tooth pick. Insert the tooth pick into the cheese- if the tooth pick doesn’t come out sticky with cheese it means you are all set to take the tray out from the oven :)
  • Remove from oven, cool at room temperature. Remove the shapes with help of your hand and place in the dessert bowl.
  • Add the cooked balls to the half and half and decorate with Pistachios and Almonds.
Let it stay immersed for about an hour. You can either serve it cold or warm. I usually keep in the fridge for few hours and serve cold:)

See fellow bloggers recipes: Asha's Basundi
and RP's Rasmalai


Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Gobi Manchurian

I wanted to try out something different with cauliflower and ended up making my favorite dish to comfort me. I love this dish which can be eaten as snack as well as side dish. It goes well with fried rice....well that’s my combo!! Here goes the recipe!!!

What you need

  • Cauliflower florets
  • 3-4 tsp of corn flour
  • 1-2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1tsp salt

For seasoning: 4-5 tsp tomato sauce, 1-2 tsp Soya sauce, onions, green bell pepper, green chilies, few cilantro.


  • Mix cauliflower florets with corn flour, red chili powder, ginger-garlic paste, and salt with 1- 2 tsp of water.
  • Deep fry the florets coated with corn flour and fry them until it gets cooked. Once it is cooked, keep them in the cloth tissue and drain the oil.
  • Heat oil in pan, add onions, slit green chilies, green bell pepper (I dint use bell pepper since I was running out of it), tomato sauce, soya sauce and add the florets and mix them well. Garnish with cilantro leaves.
Serve hot as a snack or as a side dish.
See fellow bloggers recipes:
Gobi Manchurian
Gobi 65
Gobi Manchurian

Monday, September 11, 2006


Carrot Halwa - Gajar Ka Halwa

Today I was in a good mood and wanted to do something except sitting in front of the computer and wasting my time. Sometimes computer can be an addiction for me. Once my hubby leaves I sit in front of the computer until he arrives back. So today I wanted to take a break from my normal routine and do something different. I and my husband don’t have sweet tooth but still like this particular dish- Carrot Halwa. So here goes the recipe!!!

What you need

  • 1 cup grated carrot, 2 cups of milk, ¾ - 1 cup of sugar, cardamom, 1- 2 tsp of ghee, few nuts of your choice, and pinch of saffron strands.


  • Bring grated carrot and milk together in a big pot and cook them in low medium heat. Try to do this when you have something to cook for dinner or lunch since this would take 1 hour to complete the whole process.
  • Keep stirring now and then, and cook until it becomes a thick consistency.
  • Once it becomes thick add sugar, crushed cardamom, saffron strands,and ghee.
  • Keep stirring until the milk evaporates and the mixture form to a solid structure.
  • Remove from heat and decorate with the nuts you like.

Have it cold or hot:)

Saturday, September 09, 2006


Vellarikka Pachadi / Cucumber Raita

I couldn’t take the pictures of all the dishes I made for Onam, yet managed to take some pictures of the recipes. Kichadi/Pachadi prepared from vegetables such as pine apple, cucumber (vellarikka), ladies finger (vendakka) , bitter gourd (pavayka) or similar, using yoghurt mixed with ground coconut, mustard etc. as masala. Cooked dish will be seasoned with mustard seeds spluttered in coconut oil. Taste of kichadi / pachadi is related to the vegetable ingredient- like the pine apple will be sweet and bitter gourd will be sour etc. I am still not sure of what are Pachadi and Kichadi. I think for Pachadi we grind mustard along with coconut and for Kichadi we just season with mustard with the other ingredients. I made Vellarikka Pachadi for Onam. Vellarikka is kept for Kerala New year (Vishu Kani) and pachadi is made for Sadhya (feast). I don’t see this veggie often at stores, but this time it was available during Onam. So here goes the recipe!!

Things you need

  • Peel the skin of Cucumber and finely chop them.
  • Grind (½ cup coconut, 3 green chilies, 1tsp mustard, and ½ tsp cumin seeds)
  • ½ cup - 1 cup curd or yogurt.


  • Heat pan with little oil, and add the cucumber with 2-3 tsp of water and salt and cover cook for few minutes until the cucumber gets cooked.
  • Add the ground paste to it and cook in medium heat. You can add little water if you need --the mixture should be thick.
  • Mean while- heat oil in another pan, splutter mustard seeds, 2-3 red chilies, and curry leaves. Add the above seasoning to the cucumber mixture and switch off the heat.
  • Allow the mixture to cool and add ½ to 1 cup of beaten curd or yogurt to the mixture.

Have with rice or as a side dish.

See fellow bloggers pachadi’s: Beetroot Pachadi, Cucumber Kichadi / Pachadi, Pineapple Pachadi, Mango pachadi, and Green Banana Pachadi.



Thanks Sudha for tagging me :) Meme is the one I like to do when I am lazy to post some recipes and Sudha tagged me at the right time..... Here goes my list!!!

I am thinking about: what to do after dinner
I said: Sudha had tagged me for the meme and I have to do it today without delaying!!!
I want to: have a house near the backwaters in Kerala
I wish: to talk less
I regret: receiving this questionnaire:)
I hear: vehicle noise through my window
I am: Priya :)
I dance: when I accidentally step on a cockroach:)
I sing: horrible
I cry: when I cut onions and while watching movies:)
I am not: away from my computer
I am: always in front of the computer
I write: shopping list
I confuse: everyone :)
I need: To learn to control my stress

Tagging bloggers is the easiest part and I like it--- so let me keep it to three... I tag Tasty Cooks, Menaka, and Deepa.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006


Silver Pomfret Fry ( Avoli Porichathu )

Recently while talking to my friend I came to know that pomfrets are available at Ranch Market. Usually I buy fish from the American grocery stores and I always end up buying salmon, cat fish, prawns, and shrimp. Pomfrets are one of my favorites and my dad use to make this at least once in a month. This fish were not available in the hometown where I lived back in India. So my dad used to drive to the market and buy these fish and they used to be very expensive :( I went crazy seeing them at Ranch market and picked few to make this week. Here goes the recipe!!!

To Marinate

  • Mix 3- 4 tsp of ginger –garlic paste, 1-2 tsp red chili powder, ½ tsp turmeric, ½ pepper powder, 1tsp fish masala (optional), and 1-2 tsp salt. Mix everything to a paste.
  • Clean the pomfret by making a slit at the side and take out the intestines. Wash with salt and turmeric. Make few slits on both sides of the fish with knife. Apply the paste all over the fish and allow to marinate for 1 hr in the fridge.


  • Heat the pan at low heat with 5-6 tsp of oil.
  • Once the oil gets hot add the fish and let it cook for 5 minutes. Turn the fish to the other side and let to cook for another 5 minutes. Do the process twice for each side and cook for about 20 minutes covered.
  • Be very careful while turning the fish, the fish can easily break into pieces, so handle with care.
Serve hot with rice :)

See fellow blogger recipes of Pomfret Fry

Monday, September 04, 2006


Happy Onam

Ellavarkkum hridhyam niranja Onaamshasakal:) Wishing everyone and their family a very Happy Onam:)