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Saturday, 31 January 2015

Masala Dosa (Dosa stuffed with cooked vegetables)




Masala Dosa


Dosa is everyones favourite...

Whether its for breakfast or for a quick snack in the evening or a light dinner, Dosa goes well anytime. 

Varieties such as Ghee Dosa/Roast, Masala Dosa adds to the popularity of Dosa... 



Lets prepare Masala Dosa today...


Ingredients:


For Dosa Batter-

Idli Rice/Dosa(Raw) Rice - 5 big glass (1000 gms)
Urad dal - 1 glass  (around 200 gms)
Fenugreek seeds - 1 tablespoon
Salt to taste

The ration of Urud Dal to rice is 1:5

For Masala-

Carrot-2 nos
Onion-2(big)nos
Potato-2 nos
Turmeric powder-1 teaspoon
Chilly powder-1 pinch
Green chilly-2 nos
Curry leaves-4-5 nos
Salt to taste

Process:

For Preparing Dosa batter-

Wash and soak rice and urad dal  in plenty of water for 4-5 hrs along with the fenu greek seeds (by adding fenugreek, the dosa would get a great smell).

Drain urad dal and preserve the water to use it for grinding. 
In a grinder (in case you dont have a grinder, a mixie will be ok but not as good as a grinder) grind urad dal to form a smooth and fluffy batter. During grinding add 2 glasses (around 300 ml) water. Transfer this urad dal batter into a bowl.
In a grinder, grind together drained  rice and just enough water to form a smooth batter. Around 500 ml of water would be fine. If the batter is not smooth pour little more water into  it.

Mix the rice batter along with the urad dal batter. Keep the batter aside to ferment in a warm place for about 10-12 hours. The bowl should be large enough  to accommodate twice the volume of batter. After fermentation the batter will be light and fluffy. This is the method to prepare the dosa batter. 
Use sufficient  quantity of this batter to prepare masala dosa. Usually for each dosa you would require around 50 ml of batter.
You can refrigerate the remaining batter for later use.

For preparing the Masala for Masala Dosa-

Clean and chop the Carrots and Potatues into small pieces. Clean and cut  the onion into two long pieces. Chop the green chillies vertically. Put all these into a vessel, add around 1.5 glasses (around 300ml) of water, chilly powder, turmeric powder and salt to taste. Allow to boil and once the water boils, cook it in a low flame. Once vegetables are cooked then mash  the potatoes a bit to bring in consistency. Masala for the masala dosa is ready.



Finally, the process to prepare Masala Dosa-

Take a dosa tawa and heat in high flame. Lightly brush it with oil preferably sesame (til/gingelly) oil. If  you are using a non-stick pan, do not brush the tawa with oil; if you do so you will not able to spread the batter on the tawa. Pour around 50 ml dosa batter in the dosa tawa and spread it on the tawa to form a thin and large circle. Spread oil or ghee over the dosa. Ghee is more tasty and healthy.
When it is cooked, the edges start to turn brown. Put 2 or 3 teaspoon of the masala prepared earlier over the dosa. Fold the dosa and serve with sambar and chutney.




#masaladosa, #potatoes, #carrotss, #dosa,  #keralarecipes, #indianrecipes, #vegetarian

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Gothambu / Wheat Puttu (Wheat flour steamed with layers of grated coconut in cylindrical shape)

Gothambu Puttu recipe

We have earlier seen how to make Puttu with Rice - which is the default method! Now we will see how to make puttu with wheat flour.

In Kerala, Puttu is make mainly in cylindrical shape in the vessel specifically made for this called Puttu Kudam with Puttu Kutti.

Like the puttu made of rice flour, this one is also a breakfast dish is usually eaten with green gram curry, banana, pappadam etc. 

Ingredients:


Wheat flour - 200 gms 
Coconut - 1, Grated
Salt to taste

Process:


Pour around a litre of water into the puttu kudam (the pot - the bottom portion of the vessel) and keep it in low flame for it to heat up and boil.
Meanwhile, take the wheat flour in a wide mouthed pan; wide mouthed pan is for your hands to be able to freely move around inside the vessel when you mix water with the flour. Add one teaspoon of salt.  
Take around 200 ml of water and sprinkle one handful of that into the flour in the vessel. Make sure water is sprinkled consistently and slowly. Mix thoroughly. 

Since wheat four absorbs water quickly and forms lumps, we have to be very careful while sprinkling water. Each time you sprinkle a handful of water, mix it thoroughly to avoid lumps formation. The moment lumps get formed in wheat flour, its difficult to bring them back to the powdery form and the puttu will not come good. So sprinkling less water at a time and mixing the water and the flour immediately and thoroughly is very important.  For Puttu, we need to m
ake the complete wheat flour WET and NOT a dough.

Repeat this step  5-6 times.  Make sure there are no lumpsIf you require more salt, you can mix salt into the water being sprinkled...  
Wet wheat puttu mix

After around 5-6 times - which mean you would have added around 150 ml water into the wheat flour - the complete flour would have become wet. It should hold its shape when pressed between your fist and crumble easily when pressed harder/poked
Now, take the puttu kutti (the cylindrical upper portion of the puttu maker) and put some grated coconut into it. Make sure you put the mesh that comes alongwith the vessel into the cylinder.Then add the wet rice flour for till it reaches around half of the kutti. Now add some more grated coconut, and add the wet rice flour for till it reaches  almost the top of the kutti. Add grated coconut again and close the kutti with its lid.

Wheat puttu requires more grated coconut to be added than rice puttu... 


Place it into the puttu kudam (bottom portion, in which water would have started boiling by now). Keep in medium flame. After sometime steam would start coming out oif the pores in the lid. Once the steam start coming out, keep in low flame for about 5 more min.
Now remove/detach the upper cylindrical part from the bottom part and remove the lid from the cylinder. Push out the cooked puttu from inside the cylinder into a plate. 

Gothambu Puttu is ready. Can be eaten with Green gram stir fried, bananas etc.



#wheat, #wheatrecipes, #puttu, #greengram,  #cherupayar, #keralarecipes, #indianrecipes, #vegetarian

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Mix Vegetable Thoran (Mix vegetables stir fried with grated coconut)

Thoran is made using many vegetables, the most common being cabbage, beans, snake gourd etc. Here we make a thoran using multiple vegetables. The idea is that if a little of different veggies is available, use them to make thoran... 



We have used Beans, Carrot and Elephant foot Yam here.

Ingredients:

Beans - 8 to10  nos.
Carrot -3 nos, medium sized
Yam - 100 gms
Turmeric powder - 1/2teaspoon

Onion - 1 big, Shallots can also be used
Coconut - 1/2, Grated 

Green chilly - 3 nos
Dry red chilly - 3-4 nos
Curry leaves - 4-6 nos
Mustard - 1 teaspoon
Salt to taste

Process

Clean and chop the beans, carrot and yam into small sizes. Keep these chopped vegetables aside.
Chop the onions too into small pieces and keep aside. 

Take a frying pan and pour 2 table spoons oil and put 1 teaspoon mustard into it. Once the mustard splutters, add red chillies and and curry leaves into it. 
Now, add the chopped vegetables into it. Add turmeric powder, vertically split green chillies and salt to taste. Also, add the chopped onions into it, sprinkle some water, mix  well and close the pan with the lid.

After sometime check whether the vegetables have been cooked. Once cooked, add grated coconut into it and mix well. Leave it for few minutes in the frying pan for it to get little fried.

Mix veggie thoran is ready… Serves 3 to 4 people... 

#vegetables, #thoran, #mixvegetablethoran,  #keralarecipes, #indianrecipes, #vegetarian

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Chuvanna Cheera Thoran (Red Amaranth stir fried with coconut / Sevappu Keerai Poriyal)

Chuvanna Cheera or Red Amaranth is considered to be one of the most healthy leafy vegetables. In Kerala, this leaf is consumed extensively and one of the most common dishes made using this leaf is called cheera thoran. 

Ingredients:

Red Cheera leaves - One bunch (around 500 gms)
One medium sized onion, chopped
Coconut - Half, grated
Turmeric - 1/2 tea spoon
Green Chillies - 2, slided long
White rice (raw, uncooked) - 1 tablespoon
Salt to taste

Method:

Chop off the roots of the plants. Clean the leaves thoroughly multiple times in tap water to ensure the mud in the stem, leaves etc are removed. 

Its is good practice to soak the leaves in salt water for an hour prior to chopping. This minimises the effect of chemicals/pesticides attached to the leaves. This practice can be followed for most of the vegetables and fruits that we buy.

Once cleaned thoroughly, chop the leaves into small pieces.

Pour 2 table spoons of coconut oil into a tava (frying pan). Once the oil is hot, put one teaspoon mustard into it. 
Once the mustard seeds splutter, put the raw white rice and a couple of red chillies into it.  Stir till the rice turns light brown and put the chopped leaves into it. Add turmeric powder, sliced green chillies and salt into it. 
Mix these and close the pan for the leaves to cook. It takes approx. 10 min for the leaves to cook. Always cook on low flame. 
Check whether stem has cooked. Once the stem is cooked, the leaves are obviously cooked. 

Then add the chopped onion into the cooked leaves and again close the lid. After a min, add the  grated coconut and mix it thoroughly with the cooked leaves.


Red cheera thoran is ready. This quantity is enough to serve 4 people.


#cheera, #chuvannacheera, #thoran, #redamaranthleaves,  #keralarecipes, #indianrecipes, #vegetarian

Monday, 26 January 2015

Pal Ada Payasam (Rice Ada/flakes cooked with milk and sugar and Garnished with nuts and raisins) - Easy Dessert using milk

Pal Ada payasam is a very popular kerala dish and is specially made during the traditional Onam and Vishu festivals.. Pal Ada Payasam (apart from Ada Pradhaman) is one of the popular sweet delicacies of the Kerala cuisine prepared using Ada.



Rice flakes are made out of cooked rice made into a paste and dried. Normally the rice flakes are made a few days before the festivals and are dried  in sunlight. 

However, here we are not covering the process to make the Rice Ada per-se, but the process to prepare the payasam using the Ada or cooked rice flakes.

The ada used here was a readily available one from Nirapara... You can prepare rice ada yourselves or use the ones sold in the market by companies such as Nirapara, Double horse, Eastern etc.

Pal Ada Payasam Ingredients:

Ada - 200 gms 
Image courtesy -  http://www.nestle.in/brands/nestlemilkmaid 
Ghee- 3 tablespoons
Milk-  1 litre
Condensed Milk - 400 gms (milkmaid was used) 
Water - around 500 ml
Sugar - 5 tablespoons
Cashew nuts (Kaju in Hindi / Mundhiri in Tamil / Kashu andi in Malayalam) - around 30 nos.
Raisins (Kismis in Hindi / Unakka mundiri in malayalam / Draksha in Tamil) - 30 nos.

Process:

Take a pan or a cooker and pour 2 tablespoons ghee into the pan. Put the ada into the pan and stir well. Keep stirring in low flame till the ada turns light brown. Keep it aside.

Take a vessel (around and add 4-5 glasses of milk (1 litre), add  2 glasses of water5 tablespoons of sugar and cook over medium heat, stirring continuously until it comes to boil. Make sure that you stir continuous so that the Ada doesnot stick to the bottom of the pan resulting in 

Then add the Ada into the boiling milk and mix well. Cook for about 10-15  minutes  over  low flame or until you see Ada flakes on the surface of the payasam. This means that the ada is now cooked in the milk.

And then add the condensed milk (milkmaid was used here) into it. Mix well. Add sugar if required according to your taste. Cook for another 5 minites or until the payasam  turns slightly thick.
Turn off the flame.

Garnishing:


Take a frying pan and pour 1 table spoon ghee. Once the ghee is reasonably hot, put  cashew nuts and stir in low flame till they become light brown in colour. Add  raisins (unakka mundiri/kismis)  into it and keep stirring it in low flame till it expands and it becomes round like grapes. Put the stir fried Cashew nuts and raisins into the payasam.



Around 7-8 glasses of Palada payassam is ready. It is best served hot after lunch. Tastes good when cold too...

#paladapayasam, #palada, #payasam, #vishusadya, #onasadya, #desserts, #keralarecipes, #indianrecipes, #vegetarian

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Mathanga Parippu Kootaan (Yellow Pumpkin/Manja Poosinikka in Tur Dal in Coconut paste gravy)


One of the easy curries for rice is the Mathanga Parippu kootaan. The health benefits and the taste of this curry - both are awesome.

We have already covered the health benefits of the Mathanga or Yellow Pumpkin in this earlier post on Erissery
Yellow Pumpkin (Mathanga)

Lets directly get into the cooking method...

Ingredients:
Tur Dal 

Yellow Pumpkin-1/4 Kg
Tur Dal- 100 gms
Coconut - 1/2, Grated
Turmeric powder-1 teaspoon
Chilly powder-1 teaspoon
Green chilly - 3-4 nos
Curry leaves - 6-8 nos
Dry Red chilly - 3-4 nos
Mustard- 1 teaspoon
Salt to taste

Process:

Put  the dal  in the cooker, add 2 glasses of water (approx. 300-350 ml) and cook well. keep it aside.
Chopped Yellow pumpkin
Chop the yellow pumpkin into small cubes of approx. 2 cms  each aside and put these in a vessel. Add two glasses of water. Add  chilly powder, Turmeric powder and salt to taste.
Cook it in a low flame. Once the pumpkin is cooked,  add the cooked dal  into it and mix it well. Keep it aside.

Coconut green chilly paste
Next, put 2-3 green chillies into the grated coconut, add ¼ glass of water into it and grind it to make it a paste.

Add the coconut paste into the cooked pumpkin-dal kept separately and mix it thoroughly.

Tempering:

Take a small frying pan and pour two tablespoons of oil into it. Once the oil is hot, put one table spoon of Mustard. Once all the mustard  splutters, add the broken dry red chilies into it and mix it with the mustard for it to get fried. After that add the curry  leaves.

Pour the contents into the curry…. Mathanga Parippu Kootaan is done!!
It serves 4 members in a family…

   #dal, #pumpkin, #kootan, #mathanga, #kootucurry, #keralarecipes, #indianrecipes, #vegetarian

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Achinga / Payar Chena Mezhukkuparatti (Cowpea pods and Elephant Foot Yam Stir fried Kerala Style)




This is again a very commonly prepared dish in Kerala and one of the easiest too... The only thing that takes a bit of time is to chop the Achinga (Cowpea pods) and also take out the cowpeas from the pods from which peas can be taken out. 
As we had explained the health benefits of Cowpea Pods in the earlier post on Achinga Mezhukkuparatti , we are not detailing it here again. The same is the case with the health benefits of Yam which we have explained in the earlier post on Chena Mezhukkuparatti. You can refer to these posts for details.

So lets directly get into preparation method.


Ingredients:

Cowpeas pods - 250 gms

Elephant foot Yam-100 gms
Onion - Big, 1 no. or medium - 2 nos. OR Shallots (chuvannaulli/cheriya ulli) - 10 nos.
Red Chilly flakes - 2 teaspoons
Turmeric powder - 1 teaspoon
Curry leaves - 4-6 leaves
Salt to taste

Process:

Clean the cowpeas pods. Chop the cowpeas at length of about 2 cms. If there are pods from which you can take the peas out, do the same. The combination of pods and peas improve the taste of the dish to a very great extent.

Remove the skin and clean the yam thoroughly. Chop the yam into small pieces of around 1 cm each. 

Chop onions/shallots into small pieces and keep aside. Shallots would be a better option since they add greater taste to the dish.

Take a frying pan/kadai (cheena chatti in Malayalam) and pour 2 tablespoons of oil. Once the oil is hot, put the chopped onion into it.  Add salt to the onions (adding salt will speeds up the frying of the onions). 

When onions turn into light brown colour, add the red chilly flakes and turmeric powder into it. 

Add the chopped cowpea pods and chopped yam into it and add salt to taste. Mix thoroughly and close the pan with a lid.
Once the cow peas almost cooked, open the lid. 

Mix the contents thoroughly and allow it to fry for 5 or 10 minutes with the lid open.
 
Pl. note that this is not deep fried and hence only 2 table spoons of oil would be required to cook this.


Achinga Chena Mezhukkuparatti is ready!! 

Serves 3-4…



#achinga, #cowpeas, #yam, #mezhukkupuratti, #keralarecipes, #indianrecipes, #vegetarian

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Chena Mezhukkuparatti (Yam/Elephant foot Yam and shallots Stir Fried)



Chena or Elephant Foot Yam  is one of the oldest plants known to provide food. It is widely consumed usually boiled or baked.


Yam is used in Ayurveda for numerous illnesses ranging from minor ailments such as cough to improving the quality of sperm and for liver and spleen disorders.

It is used as a treatment for piles and it helps to reduce cholesterol levels in blood. Irregular bowel movements as well as constipation can be cured by eating it.
It is high on vitamin B6 and Powerful antioxidant Vitamin C is present in it which delays aging. Vitamin A and  Potassium, Phosphorous & Magnesium are the key minerals found in elephant yam.
It can also be consumed by people looking for weight reduction as it is low on fat content.

Given below is the peparation method of one of the common dishes made out of this tuber - Chena Mezhukkuparatti


Its very easy to prepare and takes hardly 15 min to  cook...



Ingredients:

Yam-200 gms
Onion - Big, 1 no. or medium - 2 nos. OR Shallots - 10 nos.
Red Chilly flakes - 2 teaspoons
Turmeric powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Curry leaves - 4-6 leaves
Salt to taste

Process:

Remove the skin and clean the yam thoroughly. Chop the yam into small pieces of around 1 cm each. 
Chop the onion/shallots into small pieces and keep aside. Shallots are prefered since they are tastier than onions. 

Take a frying pan and pour 2 teaspoon oil into it. Once the oil is hot, add the chopped onions into it. Add little salt and stir  till the chopped onions start to turn light brown. Add 2 teaspoons of chilly flakes into it and stir well. 
Add the chopped yam into the pan, Sprinkle some water, mix well and close the pan with the lid.  
After around 10 min, open the lid and check whether the yam is cooked. 

If cooked, add curry leaves, stir well and leave it for few minutes in the frying pan for it to get little fried.

Chena Mezhukkuparatti is ready. Serves as a side dish for 3-4 people.
#chena, #yam, #mezhukkupuratti, #keralarecipes, #indianrecipes, #vegetarian

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Pavakka Mezhukkuparatti (Bitter Gourd / Karela / Pavakka Stir Fry)

Any dish made out of Pavakkya or Bitter gourd immediately generates a wide ramge of reactions - either love for Bitter gourd or hatred for it. I feel majority of people donot like this humble but great vegetable and ladies who cook bitter gourd try various means to reduce its bitterness so that it becomes a more "acceptable" vegetable in their family :)

However, if one understands the health benefits of this wonder vegetable, I think there would be many converts!! If I have to describe the benefits of bitter gourd, then this blog post would become too long !! However, if I dont mentionm a few of them, then I would be doing injustice to this vegetable.

A few benefits are - it has folates that helps pregnant women, vitamin B, vitamin A and above all Vitamin C which is one of the most powerful anti-oxidants which helps body scavenge the free radicals that are generated in our body on a daily basis... 
However, one biggest benefit we all need to know is that this wonder vegetable is known to reduce blood glucose levels... in today's world where there is a vast population suffering from Diabetes, bitter gourd is definitely helpful in fighting this menace!!
We now see how to make a simple but very tasty and more importantly nutritious dish out of this veggie...

Ingredients:

Bitter Gourd - 200 gms (shown here is a smaller variety that we get in chennai, the normal dark green long one or the whitish one that we get in kerala can be used)
Onion/Shallots - one large sized onion or 8-10
shallots. Shallots are better sine they increase the taste of thiss  dish.
Turmeric - 1 teaspoon
Green Chillies - 2
Salt - to taste

Process:

Cut the bitter gourd vertically and remove the seeds. Chop the bitter gourd into small pieces. 
Chop the onion/shallots also into small pieces. Using Shallots would improve the taste of the dish. 

Now take a frying pan and add 2-3 tablespoons of oil. 

Talking of frying pan, the best one is the one made of clay (man-chatti). The next best is the one made of cast iron. This is the one that we use to prepare such stir fry dishes since it adds to the taste as well as nutritious value in a big way. If you dont have these, its better to buy atleast one of them if not both!! They are cheap too!! Another big advantage of these is that though they take a bit longer to get heated, once hot, they get really hot, they retain the heat for a much longer time compared to the ordinary aluminium/indalium and non-stick ones. The heat retained would be such, that you can switch off the flame even when the veggies inside are 90% cooked unlike the other ones.   

Avoid using a non-stick frying pan.  

Once oil is hot, put the chopped onions into it. Add some salt and saute in low flame for a couple of minutes. Add turmeric and mix well with the sauteed onions. 
Then add the chopped bitter gourd. Chop the green chilies vertically and add into the pan. Add salt to taste (for normal salt consumers, approx. 1 to 1.5 teaspoons of salt would be required). Mix well, sprinkle some water and close the  pan with a lid.

Since we have used a iron frying pan here, just after around 10 minutes, the bitter gourd would be almost cooked. Once the bitter gourd is almost cooked, mix well and switch off the flame. 

Pavakkya Mezhukkuparatti is ready. Serves 3-4 people.



#pavakka, #bittergourd, #mezhukkupuratti, #keralarecipes, #indianrecipes, #vegetarian, #karela

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Koorka Mezhukkupuratti ( Chinese Potato / Siru kizhangu stir fry)

Koorka Mezhukkupuratti

Koorka belongs to the tuber family and has all the health benefits attached to these kinds of vegetables apart from the added benefit of a very distinct taste. 

Every household in Kerala prepares different dishes out of this vegetable and Koorka Mezhukkuparatti or stir fry is one of the most common of them. 


Lets see the method to prepare this dish.

Ingredients:

Koorka - 200 gms
Dry red Chilly flakes -2 tablespoons
Curry leaves - 3-5 nos
Onions - 1 no. Medium sized. Shallots - 5-6 nos. also can be used

Salt to taste

Process:
Remove the skin of the koorka and clean it thoroughly. Slice the koorka into almost equal sizes. Boil the cleaned and sliced koorka and while boiling, put little salt into it. 

Once the koorka is cooked, drain the water and  keep it aside. 

Chop the onions/shallots into small pieces and keep aside. 

Take a frying pan and add 2-3 tablespoons of oil into it. Add the chopped onions into the pan. Add little salt into it. Stir the chopped onion till it turns light brownish. Add 2-3 teaspoons of chilly flakes into it and stir. 

Then add the cooked koorka into it. Stir well and leave it for a few minutes in the frying pan for it to get a little fried. This improves the taste of the dish dramatically.

Koorka Mezhukkuparatti is ready. Serves 3-4 people


#koorka, #chinesepotato, #mezhukkupuratti, #keralarecipes, #indianrecipes, #vegetarian