30 January, 2007

Uppu Menasu Dosa (Spicy Dosa)

I love dosas and like it more when you can right away make them with out fermentation process. This is very old recipe from my Atte and Amma’s kitchen. They learnt it from their mothers. I am not sure as why it’s called as Uppu Menasu Dosa (Uppu means Salt and Menasu means Chilly in Kannada). Well what’s in name? It’s been my favourite dosa since as long as I can remember having it for the first name. Some what after coming here I had forgotten its existence. Yes… not anymore… Not for long time….

Uppu Menasu Dosa

Ingredients:
2 cups Rice
2 medium Onions
1 tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
1 tbsp Coriander Seeds
5-6 Dry Red Chillies (acc to taste)
Handful of Poha
Salt to taste

Uppu Menasu Dosa

Method:
Soak rice in water for 1-2 hours.
Add all the ingredients and grind them to smooth paste adding enough water.
Heat the tava and pour a spoonful of batter and spread them evenly.
Cook till it turns golden brown and crisp and turn it over.
Serve hot with any chutney/yogurt or it can be eaten as it is.

Uppu Menasu Dosa

Variation:
You can also add ½ cup of grated coconut while grinding.


Uppu Menasu Dosa
How my blog buddies look like MEME:
I’m tagged by Pooja for the MEME How my blog buddies look like. Well… it was rather difficult one as here I have to write about blog buddies whom I have never seen. I have my own vision of some blog friends with whom I interact on this virtual world of internet on almost daily basis. Although I have not met anyone of them (may never meet face to face), I have developed a very strong emotional bond with them. I think of them in terms of colours as every individual has some stong colour which portraits them. I have had never thought that I will be making so many friends here in food blogging and this is my tribute to all my blog buddies.
Everything I have written here is purely based on my imagination. So please correct me if I am wrong and do let me know as how far I am right in this guessing game. And also I could write about people with whom I have known since long time. So here we go…

POOJA:
She is mischievous and naughty to the core with streak of moodiness. She has 100 watts smile and light any place with her good sense of humour. One thing she can’t stand is sitting idle for long. Always up to something or the other.

SANDEEPA:
She is one pretty girl with short and silky hair. She is adventurous and fun loving person. I don’t know why I always imagine her in jeans and t-shirts.
LAKSHMI:
She is one busy mom with big dreams for her two little darlings. She has beautiful smile and dimple chin.
LAKSHMIK:
I feel she is much organised and also vivacious reader. I imagine her in kid’s park playing with her little one. She is passionate about everything she does and she is a terrific cook.
VIJI:
She can beat everyone’s record of cooking and blogging. One enthu person who has so much to give it to the world. If anyone deserves an award for enthusiastic food blogger, then I will definitely vote for her.

ROOMA:
I always visualise her as a leader rather than a follower. Intellectual person with brick sized book in her hand and her spectacles fixed on tip of her nose. She knows what she wants from her life and she is on the way of making it happen.

ASHA:
One busy mom working in her white kitchen creating mouth watering delicacies for her family and friends. I think that she has her camera around her neck while cooking (looking at her step by step shots of cooking). She is humble and kind. It is very difficult to imagine her as she has so many ‘avtars’.

USHA:
Ahhh… she is one sensitive soul who cares deeply for her family and friends especially her better half. She loves to make friends and can easily mingle with any crowd. She is the one who has gone through many difficulties in her life and has emerged as a role model for others. I imagine her as a person with beautiful eyes which reflects her lovely heart.

VINI:
She is a doting mother who loves to bake goodies for her little princess. Her world revolves around her daughter. I feel she is a person with big dream which she has tucked away for now, but I don’t have any doubt about her achieving it one day. And one more thing, I think she has long beautiful hair.
Although I have seen Seema, Soumya, Trupti, Dilip, Vani, Supriya, Manjula and Nidhi, I have not met most of them. So here is the picture I have of them.

SEEMA:
One creative lady blessed with magic touch. She can turn shambles into palace and give complex to any top interior decorator. Talkative who can talk for hours without taking any break.
SOUMYA:
She has a heart of gold and a face to match. Kind hearted doctor who can never think of harming even an ant.
TRUPTI:
She is a multi-tasker, able to juggle many things at once. She’d be cooking dinner and helping the kids with homework and answering the phone and keeping an ear on the radio, all at the same time. Her world revolves around her family.
VANI:
Proud mommy and wonderful wife cooking in her kitchen with her ‘Ginger’. She is gorgeous yet so simple.

DILIP:
He is a lover of everything ‘hot’ and ‘spicy’. He is a doting husband who loves to cook and experiment.
SUPRIYA:
She is a fun loving, bindas girl who lives her life to the fullest. She has got the attitude to match her personality. Bubby and friendly and also no nonsense girl.

NIDHI:
Here comes our little master chef for whom we all are proud of. She is born with silver spoon in her ‘hand’ to create magic with food. She is a lover of everything elegant and elegance is her second name.
MANJULA:
She is an attractive girl with flawless skin and beautiful eyes. Quiet,kind hearted and fun loving.
Uff... That was really difficult but it was real fun.... I quite enjoyed thinking about it.

28 January, 2007

Veg Balls in Garlic Sauce

Love Thy Neighbour... And their food;)
The unique tang of fresh ginger combined with the pungent flavor of Garlic in Chinese food is some thing I love. It is not just pleasant to one’s tongue abut also to one's the eyes, nose and imagination. For me best Chinese food is the one which has color, aroma and unique fragrance. The aesthetic presentation of food itself is an art and I’m still learning to master this unique food style. Today I am posting my favorite side dish Veg Balls in Garlic Sauce. This is my favorite side dish which goes very well with veg noodles or steam cooked rice. Well, this is my own recipe which I shaped to match my taste.
Check the recipe of Veg Fried Rice.

Veg Balls in Garlic Sauce


Ingredients:
For Veg Balls:
¼ cup Carrots
¼ cup Cabbage
¼ cup Beans
¼ cup Mushrooms
½ cup Fresh Bread Crumbs
2 tbsp Corn Flour
¼ tsp Ajinomoto
¾ tsp White Pepper Powder
1 tbsp Soya Sauce
Salt to Taste
Oil for deep frying



Veg Balls in Garlic Sauce


For Garlic Sauce:
6-7 Cloves of Garlic, chopped finely
3 spring Onions, chopped finely
3-4 Green Chillies, de-seeded and chopped finely
½ tsp Ajinomoto (Optional)
1 tsp Sugar
¼ cup Tomato Sauce
2 tbsp Soya Sauce
2 tsp White Pepper Powder
1½ tbsp Corn flour
Salt to taste
1 tbsp Oil


Veg Balls in Garlic Sauce served with Veg Fried Rice

Method:
For Veg Balls:
Cut the vegetables into very small pieces.
Heat oil in wok and stir fry the vegetables with ajinomoto for 2-3 minutes.
Turn of the gas and keep it aside to cool.
To these vegetables add salt, soya sauce, pepper powder, bread crumbs, corn flour and mix well. Add water only if required.
Make small lime sized balls and deep fry in oil till they turn golden brown.
Drain them in paper towel and keep them aside.


Veg Balls in Garlic Sauce

For Garlic Sauce:
Heat oil in wok and add finely chopped garlic, spring onion, green chillies and ajinomoto and fry for 2-3 minutes.
To this add tomato sauce, soya sauce, salt, sugar, pepper powder and enough water.
Add water to corn flour and make thin paste and add this into wok slowly.
Keep stirring the sauce till it thickens. Usually it takes 5-7 minutes.
Dip veg balls into the hot garlic sauce just before serving.
Serve this hot with veg noodles or veg fried rice and enjoy!


Hot Pot of Veg Balls in Garlic Sauce


Some Facts about Garlic:
Garlic was worshipped by the ancient Egyptians, chewed by Greek Olympian athletes and thought to be essential for keeping vampires at bay! But it is also good for zapping bacteria, keeping your heart healthy, warding off coughs and colds.

25 January, 2007

Navaratna Dosa with Coriander Chuteny

Lentils/beans are important part of diet in India. Be it plain rasam, sambar or dal lentils/beans are the main ingredients. I try to include lentils as much as possible as they are not only nutritious but also taste good. My hubby prefers dosa/pancakes for breakfast. Dosa can be made using just one ingredient. But here I am posting a recipe of dosa where I have used 9 different lentils/beans, so the name Navaratna which means 9 precious gems. The recipe source is of course my mother.

Ingredients:
1 cup Rice
1 tbsp Methi/Fenugreek Seeds
½ cup Grated Coconut
Handful of Poha
4-6 Dry Red Chillies (adjust acc to taste)
Salt to Taste
Lentils/Beans used:
2 tbsp Whole Green Gram
2 tbsp Split Green Gram
2 tbsp Toor Dal
1/4 cup Urad Dal
2 tbsp Split Chana Dal
2 tbsp Chana Dal/Chickpeas
2 tbsp Kidney Beans/Rajma
2 tbsp Whole Wheat
2 tbsp Black Eyed Beans

Navaratna Dosa with Coriander Chuteny & Soppu Sambar
Method:
  1. Soak rice, fenugreek seeds and all lentils/beans in water for at least 4-5 hours or preferably overnight.
  2. Add poha, chillies and coconut and grind them to smooth paste adding enough water and salt to taste.
  3. Keep it over night to ferment the batter in warm place.
  4. Next day prepare dosa and serve hot with any Chutney or Honey or Sambar

Navaratna Dosa
I served this dosa with Coriander Chutney. Here is the ingredient and method for making fresh coriander chutney.
Ingredients:
Small bunch/handful of Fresh Coriander Leaves
½ inch Ginger
1 cup Grated Coconut
2-3 Green Chillies
½ tsp Cumin/Jeera Seeds
1 tsp Tamarind Paste
Salt to taste
Navaratna Dosa with Coriander Chuteny & Soppu Sambar
Method:
  1. Grind all the ingredients adding little water at a time to smooth paste.
  2. You can also season it with mustard and curry leaves.

Happy Republic Day


19 January, 2007

Kashi Halwa

My MIL has so many traditional recipes in her magic hat and always surprises me with one thing or the other. I always wonder if I will have that kind of enthusiasm, patience and energy to cook complicated and very time consuming delicacies. She always makes me speechless with her delicious parade of dishes. I feel like an amateur when I compare my cooking with that of my Amma and Atte. I guess most of us will have same kind of feeling. The extra oomph comes with the love with which they cook and serve.

Kashi Halwa


Today is a time to share one of the very few sweets I love. (Oh yes!!! I am not a sweet person but my hubby compensates that part for me.) This delicacy is popularly known as Kashi Halwa. Ok!!! Now I need a favour from you guys. I have no idea as why it’s called as Kashi Halwa. Is it because it’s served as Prasad in Kashi or these are some other reason? All I know is its made using white pumpkin and its tastes heavenly. So here is the recipe.


Kashi Halwa


Ingredients:
1 kg Ash Gourd
2 cups Sugar (Adjust according to your taste)
2 cups Ghee
Few Cashew Nuts

Kashi Halwa

Method:
Remove the skin and seeds of the ash gourd and grate it.
Cook it till it looses all its moisture and becomes dry.
Now add sugar and again keep stirring till it becomes dry and changes its colour to golden brown.
Now add ghee and keep stirring continuously till the ghee floats on top.
Add cashew nuts and mix well.
Remove from fire and transfer it into storage container once it cools.
You can serve it hot or cold as desired.

Kashi Halwa


I love eating it as it is as it simply melts in your mouth. Or if you want to make it more interesting you can serve this with a dollop of vanilla or any other ice cream. I have figured out that it tastes divine with saffron ice cream. Although it’s very time consuming the end result is simply superb.

17 January, 2007

Plantain Kababs

This time when I was in India the very common veggie used by my Amma and Atte was Plantain. I had plantain Palya (Subji), Sambar, Huli, Chips, Stir fry, Kofta, Bhajia and ultimately Plantain Kabab. I know it’s a long list but I never got bored of eating them. Every dish cooked has its own taste and texture. They excel one another in different way. I loved my culinary adventure with this humble yet versatile veggie. Here is a recipe for making Kababs using plantain.

Plantain Kababs

Ingredients:
2-3 Raw Plantains, peeled, cooked and roughly mashed
1 large Onion, finely chopped
3-4 Green chillies, finely chopped
½ inch ginger, finely chopped
1 tsp Red Chilly Powder
1 tsp Turmeric Powder
½ tsp Jeera/Cumin Powder
½ tsp Coriander Powder
1 tsp Kitchen King Masala
1 tsp Garam Masala
2 tbsp Corn flour
1 Lemon Juice
2-3 tbsp Coriander Leaves, chopped finely
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

Plantain Kababs

Method:
Take a pan and heat 2 tbsp of oil.
To this add chopped onion, chillies and ginger. Sauté them till onion turn transparent.
Add mashed plantain, salt, chopped coriander, corn flour and the entire masalas one after the other and mix well.
Switch off the gas and keep the mixture aside to cool down.
Take lemon sized balls of mixture and give them a desired shape.
Deep fry them in oil till they turn golden brown colour.
Serve them hot with tomato ketchup or any sauce/chutney of your choice.

Plantain Kababs


Tip:
Try to avoid adding water while mixing the mixture. The plantain when cooked well has enough moisture to bind all the ingredients together.
You can coat the kababs with very thin coat of corn flour paste before deep frying.

Plantain Kababs

16 January, 2007

Stuffed Aloo Tikkis

Last week I was on sick leave and had to stay away from my work which at least keeps me busy. As usual while surfing through hundreds of channels I came across my favourite show “Khana Khazana” hosted by Chef Sanjeev Kapoor. It's one of the programs I have grown up watching. As a kid I always loved watching my grandma, aunties and Amma cook wide range of delicacy. And when I was away from home I substituted this with all cookery shows aired on Telly’s. What made me get hooked to these shows were the way they chop vegetables, throw them in a pan and toss them in air like some artists in circus. Even today I wish to cook like them at some time in future…. Hope… A big hope…

Stuffed Aloo Tikkis

Well… sorry friends… I got lost in memories… coming back to reality, here is the recipe for making Stuffed Aloo Tikki. As soon as I saw them I tied my apron and started making them for my hubby dear who pampered me throughout. Here I have made little variations to the one showed by the chef as I am very good at forgetting things especially ingredients. It did turn out to be big hit with my hubby. So roll up your sleeves and get ready for cooking very simple and colourful stuffed aloo tikkis.

Stuffed Aloo Tikkis


Ingredients:
3 medium Potatoes, boiled and mashed
1 tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
2 tbsp Channa Dal, roasted and powdered
½ inch Ginger, finely chopped
½ tsp Garlic Paste
1 medium Onion, chopped finely
1 tsp Garam Masala
1 tbsp Oil
Salt to taste

For Stuffing:
½ cup Green Peas, cooked and mashed
¼ tsp Hing/Asafoetida
1 tsp Amchur/Dry Mango Powder
2-3 Green Chillies
1 tbsp Oil
Salt to taste



Method:
Take oil in a pan and all cumin seeds.
Add finely chopped ginger, onion and garlic paste. Sauté them for 2 minutes.
To this add powdered channa powder and mix well.
Now add mashed potatoes, garam masala and salt to taste.
Mix all the ingredients and let them cool.
Now for stuffing, take little oil in a pan and add hing.
To this add mashed green peas and sauté them till they lose all moisture and becomes dry.
Add amchur powder, green chillies, chopped coriander leaves and salt.
Mix them well and keep it aside to cool.
Take potato mixture and make poori size balls.
Press them a little and make small hole in the center.
Now take a spoonful of green peas mix and stuff them in a center.
Make balls and flatten them using little pressure.
Shallow/deep fry till they turn golden brown.
Serve hot with chutneys or tomato sauce.

Variations:
Add bread crumbs instead of channa powder.

Stuffed Aloo Tikkis ready to be frozen


Tip:
I usually prepare tikkis in bulk quantity. The main reason being I freeze them in freezer and use as and when required. It makes my life much simpler when we have unexpected guests knocking our door. So all you have to do is just take them out from freezer and shallow/deep fry them and serve. So along with home made frozen Paratas and French fries, my freezer also contains loads of tikkis and cutlets.

Stuffed Aloo Tikkis

09 January, 2007

Genasale (Coconut+Jaggery stuffed Rice Cakes) and 3 Things MEME

Well friends, at last I am over (not entirely) with jetlag and homesickness. Thought I will start my new year's blog entry with our all time favourite Genasale aka Kai Kadabu (Kai means Coconut in Kannada) which is very well known and loved dish in Karnataka, especially in South Canara. It’s so much loved back in India that its one of the main Prasad offered to Lord Ganesha on the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi.
It is one of the easiest recipes and requires very less preparation and ingredients. So not wasting much of your time I’ll straight away come to the point.

Genasale Served with Coconut-chilly chutney and Ghee


Ingredients:
2 Cups Rice
2 Cups grated Fresh Coconut
¾ Cup Jaggery (according to taste)
½ tsp Cardamom Powder
Salt to taste
Few Banana Leaves



Genasale


Method:
Soak rice in water for 1-2 hours and them grind to smooth batter with salt and enough water. The batter should be of pouring consistency.



In a bowl mix grated coconut, jaggery powder, cardamom powder and a pinch of salt. Mix them well. You can add more jaggery if you like.



Take a banana leaf and spread the batter thinly.



To this spread the coconut mixture evenly covering the batter well.




Fold the leaf like hand kerchief (as shown above).



Place them in a steamer and steam cook them for 10 minutes in high flame and another 20-30 minutes in medium flame.


Traditional Steamer


Let them cool down a bit before you serve. Serve them with dash of Ghee and Spicy Coconut Chilli Chutney.

Kai Genasale/Kai Kadabu



3 THINGS MEME:

Thank you Seema and Pooja for tagging me for 3 Things MEME..

3 Things that scare me:
Being alone
Rats
Losing loved ones

3 people who make me laugh:
Homer Simpson from "The Simpsons"
My little sis and hubby with their PJs
My Appa and Amma with their debates ;)

3 Things I love:
First rain and the smell of earth
Shopping
Long walks (Usually when I go out for shopping it also becomes long walks)

3 Things I hate:
Messy house
Mean and cruel people
Abuse in any form and mean.

3 Things I don't understand:
Finance Subjects
Spanish, Greek, German, French…
Some PJ’s cracked by my hubby

3 Things on my desk:
Laptop
Flowers
Cell Phone

3 Things I am doing right now:
Listening to music
Waiting for my hubby to return from his office
Thinking what to cook for dinner

3 Things I want to do before I die:
Bake tiered cake
Learn as many languages as possible
Learn pottery

3 Things I can do:
Watch boring movies till “The End”
Become a kid with kids and watch cartoon with them at streach
Listen (means actually listen) to anything my family and friends want to say

3 Things one should listen to:
Your loved ones
Music, any music which cheers you
Good advice which can make you a better person

3 Things I would never want to listen to:
Weather reports (Always give wrong info, but i still listen ;)
Liers
Nonsense

3 Favourite foods:
Masala Dosa
Ganji (Boiled rice)
Pickles, lots of them

3 beverages I drink regularly:
Water
Orange Juice
Butter milk/ Curds

3 TV shows I watched as a kid:
Udaan
Ramayan
Tom and Jerry Cartoons

3 books I read as a kid:
Amar Chitra Katha
Nancy Drew
Tinkle (I still have got shelf full of them)

3 of my dearest friends whom I would like to tag for this meme:
I guess most of my blog buddies have already been tagged...
So no point in tagging again:) Will check everyone's blog at leisure and tag..

Thanks to Seema and Pooja once again... I enjoyed writing this MEME...

05 January, 2007

!ncredible !ndia...

Hello to all my lovely blog friends,
Wishing you and your loved ones A Happy New Year:) May this new year brighten your each day with joy and happiness.
Celebration means......
A winter evening.
Four friends.
One barsaat.
Four glasses of chai.
Celebration means......
Hundred bucks of petrol.
A rusty old bike.
And an open road.
Celebration means......
Maggi noodles
Your friends
A hostel room.4.25 a.m.
Celebration means......
3 old friends.
3 separate cities.
3 coffee mugs.
1 internet messenger.
Celebration means......
Rain on a hot tin roof.
Pakoras deep-frying.
Neighbours dropping in.
A party.
Celebration means......
You and mom.
A summer night.
A bottle of coconut oil.
A head massage.
Gossiping about absent family members.
You can spend
Hundreds on birthdays,
Thousands on festivals,
Lakhs on weddings,
But to celebrate
All you have to do is spend your Time with your loved ones.
This New Year lets promise to keep in touch with our loved ones........
- Anonymous

I'm still busy with unpacking and getting over with homesickness... So just posting some snaps I managed to take from our busy schedule:) Will upload more photos ASAP. Cant wait to share the recipes from my Amma and Atte's kitchen. Till then enjoy a sneak peek at few snap shots:)
Cheers
Sia






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