Wednesday, 31 July 2019

Shahi Tukda/ Bread pudding/ Double ka meetha

This Hyderabadi sweet dish is generally made by soaking deep fried bread slices (in oil or ghee) in sweetened thick milk/ rabri/ condensed milk. Here is my trial of shahi tukda in microwave with less ghee or even no ghee which tastes great too! Also bread can be toasted on a tava/ griddle too. This sweet turns to be very delicious which makes you crave for more. The process of making it is not very complicated and hence a fresher can also make this.
This Eid special dish can be made quickly for sudden craving of sweet or any other occasion. I used whole wheat bread to make this and did not cut off the edges too. 

Bread pudding

Here you find the recipe...

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves: 6
Ingredients:
Whole wheat bread slices – 6
Milk –2 cups, preferred full fat milk
Milk powder – 3 tbsp
Sugar – ½ cup, adjust as required
Cardamom – 2
Chopped dry fruits/ nuts (cashew, almond, pistachios) – 2 tbsp
Rose essence – 2 drops or 1 tsp of gulkand, I used homemade gulkand
Ghee – 2 tsp
Saffron – few strands (optional), I haven’t used in this

Method:
  • Take milk in a thick bottomed vessel, dissolve milk powder in it and bring to boil. On boiling, add sugar & crushed cardamom. Boil further on low flame until it thickens a bit and reduces to about 1.5 cup. Stir occasionally in order to avoid sticking of milk to bottom of the vessel.
  • Switch off the stove and add rose essence or gulkand. If you prefer saffron flavour, then add saffron while boiling milk and leave rose essence.
  • Cut the bread slices into desired shape, you can remove the edges of bread which I don’t do inorder to avoid wasting. It does not make much difference too.  Shape of pieces can be  triangular or into smaller squares or rectangles.
  • Brush each piece of bread with little ghee and place on a microwave safe baking tray spreading evenly. Keep it in the microwave oven and heat for 2 minutes.
  • Now turn each slice on the tray so that other side faces up. Heat it for one minute again.
  • If you don’t want to use microwave, then heat a griddle and roast both sides until it turns little crisp.
  • Arrange the roasted bread pieces on a tray or bowl as desired.
  • Pour the prepared milk/ rabdi/ rabri on it so that every piece of bread gets milk to absorb.
  • Garnish with roasted nuts pieces and rose petals/ saffron. Set aside for 5-10 minutes.
  • You can serve it warm or chilled. Both taste great.

Notes:
  • You can prepare rabri (milk) in microwave too.
  • I suggest to use either of saffron or rose essence instead both.
  • You can also use sweet condensed milk instead milk powder. I this case add it to the milk to boil and reduce the sugar as required.
Shahi Tukda/ Shahi Tukra

Sunday, 28 July 2019

Dates, tamarind sweet & sour chutney

Chutney is a best accomplishment to any south Indian breakfast like idli, dosa… When it comes to dishes like Gujarathi dokla, samosa or chats, sweet chutney makes a great combination. I am sharing a simple & healthier sweet chutney recipe in today’s post that is nothing but dates & tamarind sweet chutney. It is rich in iron as main ingredient is dates. Tamarind, another main ingredient has number of health benefits. It is good appetizer, rich in fiber and improves hair & skin health.

Dates, tamarind sweet & sour chutney

Please check for the recipe of Moong dal dokla here. Here is another sweet chutney recipe,  which is Horse gram sweet chutney!

Preparation time: 1 hour (soaking time)
Cooking/ making time: 15 minutes
Serves: 3-4
Ingredients:
Dates – ½ cup, seedless or seeds removed
Tamarind – ¼ cup or little less
Jaggery – 2 tsp
Salt – ¼ tsp, to taste
Cumin – ½ tsp
Coriander – ½ tsp
Red chilli powder – ½ tsp, as needed
Water - 1 - 1.5 cups

Method:
  • Remove the seeds of dates if you aren’t using seedless.
  • Wash the dates and soak in 1/2 cup of warm water for an hour, along with tamarind.
  • Now roast cumin and coriander seeds until they turn to brown in color. (You can use ready made cumin & coriander powder after heating it for a minute).
  • Now take all the prepared ingredients together in chutney making mixer jar. Blend to get a smooth paste adding little water if needed.
  • Transfer to the serving bowl.
  • Serve fresh as side dish for dokla, chapathi, dosa or use in chats.


Dates, tamarind chutney

Notes:

  • You can use roasted dry red chilli instead of chilli powder.
  • Optionally you can prepare a seasoning with coconut oil, cumin and boil the chutney for a while to increase the shelf life.
  • Refrigerated chutney can be used for 2 days if not boiled.

sweet & sour chutney

Monday, 22 July 2019

Palak Kichdi/ Spinach kichdi/ Green pongal

If you are looking for a healthy protein rich one pot rice dish for lunch box or lunch, then my first suggestion would be Kichdi/ pongal. It is one such nutritious & easy to make dish which can be served even without side dish. A choice of pickle is good to go. Generally kids like it at the time they are initially introduced the solid food world as it is mix of mild flavors. You can make it interesting with the addition of veggies too. Today, I am sharing one such healthy recipe, that is spinach kichdi which is attractive with its green color.

Palak Kichdi


Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Serves: 3
Ingredients:
Fresh palak/ spinach leave – 2 cups, tightly packed
White rice – 1 cup
Moong dal – 1 cup
Salt – 1 tsp, adjust as required
Tamarind – ¼ tsp (optional)
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Black pepper – ½ tsp, Adjust as desired
Cumin powder – ½ tsp
Coriander powder – ½ tsp
Dry red chilli -1
Cooking oil/ butter/ ghee – 2 tsp + 2 tbsp additional butter/ ghee
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Cashews – 10 – 12 (optional)

Method 1 (one pot dish):
  • Initially, If you don’t have ready to use cumin and coriander powder, then make it. To prepare it, dry roast these seeds and crush using a mortar pestle or dry mixer jar.
  • Clean & wash palak/ spinach leaves. Take cleaned leaves in a mixer jar, grind to make smooth paste adding tamarind. You need not add water. Keep this puree aside.
  • Slightly crush pepper & cumin seeds just to release flavor.
  • Was rice and moong dal and keep that too ready.
  • Heat pressure cooker with 2 tsp added oil/ butter.
  • Add mustard seeds, crushed cumin & pepper and cut dry red chilli. On spluttering add curry leaves.
  • Add Cumin & coriander powder and sauté once.
  • Add the palak puree to it and sauté for couple of minutes or until raw smell goes off.
  • Now add washed dal and rice. Add salt and turmeric powder.
  • Pour in 5 cups of water. Close the lid and pressure cook for 3 whistles.
  • Wait until pressure releases. Then open the lid.
  • If it looks dry, then add water as needed and boil to get kichdi consistency.
  • Fry cashews chunks in a tea spoon of ghee and add to the kichdi.  Serve the steaming hot kichdi with preferred side dish or as it is.
Method 2 (Preparing spinach puree separate): 

In this method, all the above steps remains same except addition of spinach/ palak puree initially before pressure cooking.
  • Initially prepared seasoning, and pressure cook rice & dal with other spices adding water as needed.
  • Meanwhile, blanch or boil cleaned palak leaves with little water and make a puree of it on cooling.
  • Once the pressure settles down, add spinach puree & boil well adding required water.
  • In this method, the color remains richer.
Spinach kichdi

Notes:
  • If you like to add more flavour, then add 4 cloves of garlic & half inch ginger while grinding palak leaves.
  • If you love to enjoy plain kichdi/ khaara pongal, then just leave palak puree. Rest of the process remains same.
  • Replacing palak by tomato makes red tomato kichdi.
Green pongal

Thursday, 18 July 2019

Creamy Peanut soup/ Ground nut/ Nelakadle Soup

Peanut is a commonly found nut/ legume in every Indian kitchen. It is called by various names such as Nelakadale/ Kadle beeja (in kannada), Peanuts/ ground nuts/ monkey nut… It is considered as badavara badami (literal translation is poor men’s almond) as it is easily available and inexpensive to buy. It is not any less in terms of nutritional values. Using peanuts in cooking is not new to us, without which many of the rice items are incomplete. Fried peanuts become favourite snack for many. It goes great as sweet (chikki) by adding jaggery.
‘Peanut Soup’ may be new to many; it was to me until my husband visited Germany for a short trip a couple of years back. His German colleague prepared this delicious soup when he invited for a dinner and the recipe was the one they shared. I customized a bit with fewer ingredients change, but originally credit goes to them. This is very easy to make with just 4-5 ingredients and goes vegan as no milk in this recipe.


This resembles almond soup in taste with flavor of peanut. Now let us see the recipe of this filling, protein rich and delicious soup.

Preparation time: 1 hour
Cooking time: 15 minutes
Serves - 2
Ingredients:
Peanuts – 3-4 tbsp
Water – 2.5 cups
Black pepper powder – ¼ tsp
Salt – to taste
Cumin seeds – ½ tsp

Method:
  • Wash peanuts and soak in water for an hour or two.
  • Drain water and grind in a mixer jar adding water as required. Few chunks are fine to have.
  • Transfer to a vessel, add remaining water. Add salt. Boil well until it thickens a bit. Roast cumin/ jeera in a dry pan. Crush a bit. Add pepper powder & crushed cumin powder to the soup.
  • Serve hot soup with toast or plain.
  • Optionally you can add choice of herb too.

Monday, 15 July 2019

Star fruit/ Daare Huli & vegetables salad

Have you ever come across these beautiful fruits called star fruit? It is called daare huLi in kannada. It exactly resembles a twinkling star when we do a cross section! It generally tastes sweet & sour with a unique flavour. It is mostly ignored & wasted in coastal Karnataka in my observation, though it goes great in juice, gojju, stew… In western countries, it is highly valued & used in juice making & food styling.
It is a nutritious fruit, low in calorie (carbs). It is rich in antioxidants. These juicy fruits have combination of sweet and sour taste. 
Now we have a small 3 year old plant in our garden, which started yielding this year. It is sweet variety & hence good to eat & use in salads. I tried this simple salad with locally available ‘garden night shade’ fruits (Ganike/ Kaasin hannu) & vegetables like tomatoes, onions seasoned with cumin, pepper, salt, lemon, fresh mint & coconut oil. I added 2 fresh & tender passion fruit leaves (wilted in oil) while seasoning! I recently came to know that these leaves are edible from a relative. You can add veggies & fruits of your choice too..

Note: I am not very sure about side effects of this fruit. Care should be taken before eating it if any pre existing health issues! 

Star fruit & vegetables salad

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Serves: 2
Ingredients:
Star fruits – 2
Onions – 1 (medium)
Tomato – 1
Salt – to taste
Pepper powder – a pinch (optional)
Cumin seeds – ½ tsp
Cooking oil – 2 tsp , I used coconut oil
Fresh mint leaves – 1 tsp, finely chopped
Lemon juice/ vinegar – 1 tsp, I prefer lemon juice. You can avoid it if star fruit is sour
Ganike/ black night shade fruits – 2 tbsp (optional)

Method:
  • Wash fruits. Slice star fruits so that you get beautiful star shaped pieces. Keep 6-8 of them aside to garnish the salad. Chop remaining pieces as you like.
  • Peel onions, wash and chop finely.
  • Chop washed tomatoes too.
  • In a serving bowl, mix chopped tomatoes, onions, star fruits. Add salt and pepper powder. 
  • Add finely chopped mint leaves, mix well.
  • Now prepare a seasoning/ tadka of coconut oil with slightly crushed cumin (I added 2 finely chopped passion fruit leaves & wilted it in oil). On spluttering, add it to the salad.
  • Add lemon juice/ vinegar and garden night shade/ ganike fruits.
  • Top with star fruit pieces kept aside for garnishing. Serve fresh colorful salad.

Notes:
  • You can add fruits like guava/ apple or cucumber to this salad.
  • Coriander leaves can also be added for the flavor.
Star fruit salad

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Horse gram Dosa/ Huruli/ Kudu Dosa

Dosa is a staple food that we consume as breakfast in south India. It is a kind of mandate to have at least twice a week in our home. It is not only easy to make if batter is ready but also makes a wholesome meal, loved by most. So making it interesting, attractive by variety is all about the task of a homemaker! Nutrition value of it cannot be ignored too as it is to start the day. Unique dosa can be made by altering few ingredients or addition of goodness (vegetables/ fruits/ pulses) to the regular batter.
Check for few dosa recipes that I have already shared such as
Now, let us Horse gram dosa recipe!

Horse gram Dosa

Preparation time: 10 hours
Cooking time: 45 minutes (for making dosa)
Serves: 20 – 24 dosas
Ingredients:
Dosa rice – 3.5 cups
Urad dal – 1/4 cup
Horse gram/ Huruli/ Kudu – ¾ - 1 cup
Fenugreek seeds – 1 tsp (optional)
Salt – to taste (1.5 tsp. approx)
Oil & Ghee – for preparing dosa

Method:
  • Wash rice, urad dal, horse gram & fenugreek seeds with clean water and soak in water for minimum 4 hours.
  • When it is done, wash once again, drain water.
  • Take rice, horse gram, dal & fenugreek (soaked & washed) in a wet mixer jar or grinder. Grind to smooth batter adding required water. Add salt while grinding.
  • Mix the batter well and keep it covered in a warm place to ferment. It requires minimum 8 – 10 hours. Ideal timing is evening 4 – morning until you make dosas.
  • The batter rises as it ferments, so have enough space in the vessel.

Making dosas:
  • Heat the iron griddle/ tava. Apply little oil on top.
  • Adjust the consistency to that of plain dosa batter adding water. Take a ladleful of batter and spread on the griddle as you like. That is mini or single large, thin or thick dosa.
  • Cover with the lid and cook. Apply 1 tsp of fresh ghee on dosa, flip to cook other side. It takes approximately 2 minutes to make a dosa.
  • Serve hot dosa with coconut chutney, potato palya/ sambhar.
Huruli or Kudu Dosa

Friday, 5 July 2019

Kaadu mavina hannina sasive/ wild mango fruits seasoned in mustard flavored coconut gravy

Wild mangoes usually will be smaller in size, fibrous in texture and have sweet and sour in taste when compared to the non-fibrous varieties (hybrid) mangoes that we get in market. Now a day we can spot huge trees of wild mangoes only in few villages unlike before. Summer is the season of mangoes and it is the time of summer holidays for kids. Main activity of the kids enjoying holiday used to be picking and collecting the wild mangoes fallen down from the trees on daily basis as it is difficult to pluck them from the tree and harvest as the trees used to be really big.
Those days are gone, but still we get good wild mangoes even in markets. Sakkare kutti is one such variety which we get in Bangalore.  Also we are lucky enough to have few trees in our hometown from which we get plenty of fruits every year. In the season, it is the routine to have minimum one mango dish everyday in our homes. Still there will be extra fruits spared which either will be shared with friends & relatives or go in making of mambala (natural sun dried mango bar) or jam! Today I am sharing one of famous seasonal delicacy from southern Karnataka & Malnad region which is mavina hannina sasive. This recipe needs just few ingredients, no buttermilk/ curds added in it like other vegetable sasive. The acidic property of mango comes down with the addition of coconut. It tastes heavenly as combination to steamed rice.
Also look for wild mango/ kaadu mavina hannu hasi gojju recipe here.


Kaadu mavina hannina sasive

Preparation time: 20 minutes
Serves: 4
Ingredients:
Small wild mango fruits – 6-8
Fresh grated coconut – ½ cup
Jaggery – orange sized, adjust to taste & depending on the sweetness of mango
Salt - 1 tsp
Dry red chilli – 1-2
Mustard seeds – 1-2 tsp

Method:
  • Wash mangoes clean. Cut off the stem. Peel the skin with your fingers. Take all the peeled skin in one bowl and all the seeds (hard kernel) in another larger bowl.
  • Add little water (say ¼ cup) to the skin and squeeze to extract juice completely. Discard the skin. Add collected juice to the vessel having seeds. Press the seed a bit with fingers just to loosen the pulp.
  • Add salt and grated jaggery to the mango. Mix well. Set aside for 10 minutes for the Marination.
  • Now take grated coconut, red chilli and mustard seeds in mixer jar and grind to smooth paste by adding little water.
  • Mix the ground coconut mustard gravy with the marinated mango mix.
  • Serve this sasive with rice and enjoy.
  • Refrigerate it if keeping for longer.
Notes:
  • The red chillis can be fried with few drops of oil before grinding as well.
  • You can make optional tadka/ seasoning of mustard, oil & curry leaves and add it to the gravy. It is just optional.
wild mango fruits seasoned in mustard flavored coconut gravy

Wednesday, 3 July 2019

Plantain stem Dosa/ Banana stem neer dosa/ Baale dandu dosa

Dosa, idli are the comfort and regular breakfast in many south Indian homes. Making variety of dosas than regular plain dosa is always better as it makes breakfast more interesting and nutritious. Plain dosa, masala dosa, neer dosa, cucumber dosa, Tender coconut dosa are some varieties I make in my kitchen. This plantain stem/ banana stem is one more addition to the list as it makes delicious dosa, at the same time it is safe for everyone and healthier option too. I need not mention about the goodness of banana stem as I have already posted some of the plantain stem dishes such as Plantain stem Bajji, Plantain stem sasive, Banana stem Palya, Barley plantain stem juice, Banana Stem chutney …

Plantain stem Dosa

Preparation time: 4 hours
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves: 16-20 dosa
Ingredients:
Roughly chopped plantain stem – 2 cups/ around ½ ft length cleaned banana stem
Dosa rice – 3 cups
Salt – to taste
Oil/ ghee – to make dosa

Method:

Making of batter
  • Wash and soak dosa rice in water for 2-4 hours.
  • Now, clean banana stem by removing outer covers. Wash clean and chop roughly using a sharp knife. Rinse chopped plantain stem in water.
  • Drain water from soaked rice completely. Take chopped banana stem, rice in a mixer jar.Add salt and grind it adding enough water to make smooth batter. Consistency of the batter should be watery like neer dosa batter or little thicker.
  • Make dosas with fresh batter or refrigerate this batter until dosa is prepared. Do not ferment this batter.

Making of dosa:
  • Adjust the batter adding required water to make the consistency that of little thicker than neer dosa batter. You can check and add more water after making one dosa if it is harder.
  • Heat iron griddle/ pan. Apply little oil or ghee.
  • Drop a ladle full of batter and spread to make dosa. Or you can follow the method of making neer dosa.
  • Close the lid and cook for a minute or until it is cooked properly and dosa comes out of tava clean. Apply ghee on top and roast inverting it for a while. (This is optional.)
  • Serve hot dosa with choice of coconut chutney.

Note:
  • You can add ½ or one small cucumber with banana stem while grinding dosa batter for the enhanced flavour.
  • Chopped onions, curry leaves, geen chilli and/ or coriander leaves can be added in the batter as well.
Baale dandu dosa