July 18, 2011

Garlic Fried rice with Paneer Manchurian

Sunday lunch is usually an unhurried and elaborate affair, often a 3 course meal. However, with S out this Sunday too, me n kiddo had this yummy Garlic fried Rice and Paneer Manchurian - a combo that never fails to deliver the punch and excitements for kids and adults alike. With the entire combo made in just 2 tsp of olive oil and no MSG and with carrots and paneer added, this is an extremely healthy meal to regular junk food dished out at restaurants / food courts at malls .

July 17, 2011

Sprouts Rava Idli with Ginger-Carrot Chutney



Day 2 of Blogging Marathon saw me dishing out Sprouts Rava Idli with Ginger-Carrot Chutney for a combo meal. Adding some sprouts + boiled veggies upped the health quotient of this meal quite a bit, and perfect for snack boxes and No Oil cooking options or even for breakfast.. Let's proceed to the combo dish, shall we ?


July 16, 2011

Low Fat Carrot-Feta Grill Sandwich with Mango-Pepper Salad




Frankly, this was my first shot at using Feta Cheese, especially in a sandwich. I was quite apprehensive on how it would turn out , but it did, fantastically at that !! Loved the salty cheesy combo with freshly grated carrots, and I must say it was quite a sellout even with mom who detests bread of any kind ! Am quite confident about using this cheese, and although I am still looking for stores that sell tortillas around where I live, with which I could use some more feta.


I guess this with added spinach can be served baked / stove top with chapatis as a roll too .. ummm... that's an interesting lunch box snack. Having chosen  Combo meals for Blogging Marathon , I served this with Mango-Pepper Salad for Day 1 of the Blogging Marathon.


Check out the Other Marathoners here


July 14, 2011

Oats Kharabhath ~ Oats Upma

Ok, now that the 'health meter' is ringing loudly at home , am looking for ways to use up the Oats lying for soooo long in my pantry and made Oats Kharabhath. Kharabhath is 'kannada food' slang for savoury Upma with Sambhar Powder. If you prefer, you may make this sans this spice powder too, and you would get the normal upma taste.


This was lying in my draft to be posted for the last Blogging Marathon, but somehow never got to do it.. Better late than never, I guess. I have adapted PJ's recipe as I was paired with her for the previous marathon. For those who like Upma and also Oats, this is a great option, and a healthy one at that, for breakfast or even for dinner as an One Pot Meal. But for people in the 'no like' category for either ingredient, this is something that will be an acquired taste.

Prep time : 10 mins. Cooking time: 20 mins. Serves : 2


Ingredients:


  • Oats (quick rolled) - 2 cups (I used Quaker brand)
  • Chopped veggies (french beans / carrots/ cabbage/peas) - 1 cup
  • Onions- 1 chopped (opt)
  • Sambhar powder - 2 tsp ( I used Vangibhath powder)
  • Salt - to taste
  • Turmeric - 1/2 tsp
  • Hing / Asafoetida - a pinch
  • Oil - 1 TBSP
  • Mustard seeds, Urad dal - 1 tsp each
  • Curry leaves, coriander - few stalks
  • Green chillies - 1 or 2 (opt)
  • Lemon juice - 1 TBSP
Method:


1) Dry roast Oats in a pan. Powder them into a coarse powder if preferred (I used them whole)
2) In a non stick pan, add oil. Splutter mustard, urad dal, hing, curry leaves, turmeric and green chillies.
3) Then add onions and fry well. Once translucent, add salt and the chopped veggies. If the veggies are not previously blanched, add 1 cup of water. Cover and cook for 5 - 8 mins till done.
4) Now add the sambhar powder and the Oats. Cover and cook. Check if you need more water (may be 1/4 cup at this stage). Cook till Oats and veggies are done. Garnish with coriander. Take off the stove and add lemon juice and serve hot with chutney/ chilled curd or just as it is.


Sending this to Vardhini's event - fast food, not fat food ! originally started by Priya

July 12, 2011

Round up of My Mother's Kitchen(MMK) Edition # 1 - One Pot Meals

20 lip smacking entries to the first edition of My Mother's Kitchen (MMK) - One Pot Meals :) Am surely impressed, although am sure there are a hundred more in the blogosphere with you lovely bloggers..

Thank you so much for your enthusiastic participation, and look forward to more deilightful entries on the current events at my space - MMK Edition # 2 - Indian Mithai Mela and Dish it out with Mushrooms n Onions

Cheers,
Kalyani

Shall we proceed to the round up? By alphabetical order, we have:

Champa’s delightful Minty coconut Rice intrigued me quite a bit, liked the addition of coconut milk to mint rice

Jayashree’s Bisi bele Bhath with broken wheat was certainly healthy and flavourful

Kaveri's Spinach and Corn Pulao was healthy and nutritious too :)

 
Madhavi’s Pudina Bhath – a restaurant speciality in Darshinis @ Bangalore - certainly made me very nostalgic

Priya Sreeram’s Orange and Peas Pulao was an eclectic but delightful combo

R & R’s space Tadka Pasta had this fiery n spicy Pop’s Peppery Chilli to go with Makai Rotis – now who could resist that??

Sangeetha’s Broccoli flavoured Rice is definitely lipsmacking, not to forget one more way of bringing Broccoli back to the Dining Table. She has also sent this Pigeon Peas Tomato Bhath



Sravani has sent in two yummy entries :  Quick and Healthy Tomato Coconut Rice and Healthy Carrot Rice


Vaishali’s Broccoli and Bean wrap and Veg-Corn Handvo are perfect ‘mini meals’ for snackboxes and lunchtime too !



Vardhini’s entry Vermicilli Upma is my all time favourite for a quick One Pot Meal :)

One Pot Meals from my own space "What's cooking?"

                           


Two more dishes that I received were not exactly One Pot Meals. But I have included them in the round up as well.
Akheela of Torview Toronto has sent this delectable Lotus Root Curry that goes well with steamed rice !


Zareena's VazhaiChandu Thoran is definitely a healthy curry


 

July 9, 2011

My Mother's kitchen # 2 : Indian Mithai Mela - send in your sinfully sweet entries..

                                          

Thanks to the sellout of the first edition of MMK- My Mother's Kitchen (One Pot Meals) , I present here the 2nd edition of MMK with the theme "Indian Mithai Mela" .. With the Indian festive season around the corner, these entries would be a one-stop shop roundup soon :)

Running from today 9th July - 10th Aug , please do link in your entries based on Indian Sweets like kheer / laddoos / barfis / jalebis / pedas /Halwas etc

Even archived entries linked to this announcement are accepted !!   Do earmark all your entries as MMK - Mithai Mela while telling your blogger friends a line or two why the dish is your favourite.

I am sure that you all would rush in your entries to this sinfully sweet event :-)

My email ID is momchef77(at)gmail(dot)com



cheers
Kalyani
                            
learnt or bookmarked from mom / Mother in law/ friends / magazines to this announcement.

Arichivitta Kootu ~ Veggies in spiced lentil gravy


Kootu (Tamil = coming together) is a Tamilnadu dish with main ingredients being vegetables and dal (lentils) and therefore rich in proteins and vitamins. Of course, there is the faux pas of even Thovve (just dal + vegtables) being called Kootu. As S says, if its not sambhar or rasam, it has to be Kootu. Earlier on, I used to address to correct this issue, but now let it pass - after all, what is palatable is what counts, nomenclature be shifted to the back burner.


Today's dish, Arichivitta Kottu is a staple dish that goes well with Rice or chapatis alike. Any vegetable can be added to this (barring of course, Lady's finger /brinjal etc), this medley of vegetables can be had in the Kurma form (with onions / garlic / ginger) or today's dish with more saatvic ingredients of black pepper, Urad dal and cumin freshly ground.

Over to today's dish:

Prep time : 10 mins. Cooking time : 20 mins. Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • Veggies - Carrots / Cauliflower/French beans  - finely chopped - 2 cups
  • Moong Dal / Toor Dal - 1 handful (1/2 cup)
  • Salt - to taste
  • Turmeric - 1/2 tsp
For tempering :
  • Oil - 1 tsp, Mustard seeds-  1 Tsp, Curry leaves - few, Peanuts (handful)- Optional
Spicy Masala (for grinding):
  • Urad dal / Split black gram - 1 TBSP
  • Jeera / Cumin - 1/2 TBSP
  • Black Pepper - 1/4 TBSP
  • Dhania / Dry coriander seeds - 1/4 TBSp (opt)
  • Red chillies - 2 or 3
  • Hing / Asafoetida - 1/2 tsp
  • Freshly Grated coconut - 2 TBSP
Method:

1) Wash and par boil all veggies in a pan of water with a pinch of salt till 3/4 cooked but not mushy.
2) Pressure cook the dal with little water and a pinch of turmeric till done. Cool
3) In a pan, add 1 tsp of oil and gently fry all ingredients of masala (excluding coconut) one by one till Urad dal is browned and other ingredients leave out a gentle nice aroma. Grind with coconut to a smooth paste.
4) In a deep bottomed pan, prepare the tempering. Add the boiled dal, ground spice mixture, salt, and the veggies and let it simmer covered on a gentle boil for 3 - 6 mins.
5) Uncover, transfer to dish and serve hot with Rice or Rotis. Tastes yum even with curd rice !:)

Tips:
1) You may add any medley of vegetables to this curry. I have even added a handful of boiled jackfruit seeds and 1 chopped potato to enhance the taste.


July 6, 2011

Karivepalai Podi ~ Curry leaf Spice Powder



Like the Chutney Podi (Lentil spice powder) is to Karnataka, this Karivepalai Podi Or Curry leaf powder is to Tamilnadu. I make this infrequently, but the end of last week saw my pantry inundated with curry leaves, and then I decided to make this. Both hubby and me love curry leaf, even in the whole form and I am told regular intake of this leaf reduces greying and hairfall too ! I love the fried and crushed curry leaves in most South Indian Bhakshanams (fried snacks) , Chivda and Neer Mor (Light and frothy buttermilk). More health benefits of this leaf can be found here


Update : Sending this to Valli's Condiment Mela and Jaya's Back to Basics 


Also sending this to Tastejunction's event - cooking with herbs and flowers , started by PJ

 Shall we go to today's recipe then? Eaten primarily with Steamed rice and sesame oil, you may have it even with Dosa / Idli . Takes under 20 minutes to prepare about 100 gm of this podi (Spice Powder). Only precaution is to wash and dry the leaves thoroughly before roasting and grinding it, else its shelf life will be drastically reduced.

Check out similar spice powders / Condiments here


Prep time : 10 mins. Grinding time: about 10 mins. Makes :approx 100 - 150 gms.


Ingredients:


  • Curry leaves - about 50 - 75 stalks (or leaves -1 cup pressed)
  • Urad Dal - 1/4 cup
  • Channa Dal - a handful
  • Hing - 2 tsp
  • Salt - to taste
  • Tamarind - 1 small lemon sized
  • Oil - 4 TBSP
  • Jaggery - 1 TBSP (opt)
  • Dry grated coconut (Copra) - 1/8 cup
  • Red chillies - 4 or 5 (not Kashmiri variety)


Method:


1) Wipe the leaves with a soft white damp cloth and immediately with a dry cloth. If you are washing the leaves, ensure ALL water drains off and they are perfectly dry and clean.
2) In a pan, heat 2 TBSP of oil and fry these curry leaves in batches (with stalks if you are using them) thoroughly in the oil till they are crisp to the touch. Add 1 or 2 tsp more oil if required. Transfer and cool in a plate.
3) In the same pan, heat 2 TBSP more oil and fry the Urad Dal, Channa Dal, Tamarind, Red chillies one by one till the dals are golden brown. Cool.
4) Now turn off the hot pan and dry roast the grated copra / dry coconut without any oil for 1-2 mins till they turn slightly brown and crusty.
5) Now, dry grind all the ingredients except coconut in a spice mixture. Add salt, jaggery and hing and grind once more. You may prefer the final texture to be coarse or smooth.
6) Now add the roasted coconut and grind just once, else the oil from the coconut will seep into the mixture and turn it slightly soggy.
7) Check for salt. Cool and store in an airtight glass jar !
8) Keeps well for 4 - 5 weeks without refrigeration.


July 5, 2011

Healthy Carrot Garlic Chutney


One of the first dishes that got exported from Sailu's Food into my kitchen was this spicy and tasty Carrot Garlic chutney  -she is one of my favourite food bloggers and both her writing and Andhra preparations appeal to me :) This dish - Carrot Garlic Chutney - is a favourite in my family and I make this often with Dosa / Adai and use the rest to spread it on bread to make a sandwich etc. Its a lovely scrumptious chutney, and tastes great with hot steamed rice and ghee too :) Loaded with the goodness of beta carotene (from carrots) and Vit B12 from the Pottu Kadalai (fried gram),  this also helps me cut down the coconut required for any chutney. In fact, I have made this with no coconut at all many times in the past without compromising on the taste.

Update: Sending this to Vardhini's Herbs & Flowers - Garlic Event started by PJ


Other chutneys which you can check out are: Vegetable Peel Chutney, Inji Thogayal (Ginger Chutney)


Prep time : 10 mins. Cooking time : Nil. Serves : 3


Ingredients:


  • Carrots - 1 large (do not discard the peel) - cubed fine or wafer thin slices.
  • Red chillies - 1 or 2
  • Green chillies - 1 (opt)
  • Garlic - 4 -5 pods (medium)
  • Green coriander - about 3 TBSP (opt)
  • Grated coconut - 3 tsp (opt)
  • Fried gram / Dalia / Pottu Kadalai - 1.5 TBSP
  • Methi seeds / fenugreek - 1/2 tsp
  • Tamarind - small lemon sized
  • Jaggery grated - 1 tsp (opt)
  • Salt - to taste
  • Oil - 1 tsp
Tempering :
  • Oil - 1 tsp, Urad dal - 1 tsp, hing / Asafoetida - 1/2 tsp, Curry leaves - few


Method:


1) In a small pan, add 1/2 tsp of oil. Fry garlic and carrots (and washed peel) together till it leaves a fine aroma. Transfer and cool.
2) In the same pan, add another 1/2 tsp of oil, fry methi seeds, green coriander, red and green chillies and tamarind taking care not to burn the methi seeds. Cool and add fried gram and stir once more.
3) Dry grind ingredients from step 1 and 2 above with salt, jaggery and coconut. Now add very little water and grind to a a chutney consistency - this is thicker than the usual runny coconut chutneys. Transfer to serving bowl.
4) Check for salt. Prepare tempering with the ingredients. Pour on the chutney and serve with Kanjivaram Idli / Dosa / Adai / Akki Rotti or just lap it up with hot steamed rice and ghee !! Slurp !!

July 1, 2011

Guest Hosting : Dish it out with Mushrooms and Onions - Do send in your entries

Friends, glad to announce I am guest hosting Vardhini's "Dish it Out" with Mushroom and Onions this entire month - July 2011 !!

Am sure to receive lip smacking recipes from all of you bloggers and foodies out there. New recipes as well as archived entries (updated and linked to this event) are accepted.

Just a quick recap of how you can send in your entries:


1. Make a dish using the ingredients mentioned (mushroom and onion). We should be able to taste the ingredients in the final dish.
2. Only vegetarian entries. Eggs are allowed in baking.
3. Use of logo is appreciated as it helps spread the word.
4. Link to both Vardhini's Dish it Out announcement and this announcement is mandatory.
5. Archived entries are accepted as long as updated with these hyperlinks as above.

6. Non bloggers may also send in their entries.

You may tag all your delicious recipes and mail me : momchef77@gmail.com

(momchef77{at}gmail{dot}com)

Thanks Vardhini for this wonderful opportunity, and would be a pleasure to receive all your delicious entries using both these ingredients.

Cheers,
Kalyani

June 30, 2011

Healthy Brocolli Soup


 Broccoli is one super healthy veggie, but unfortunately relegated to the "hate-me" list by most kids.. It was due to this reason that I launched my ongoing event - Healthy Lunchbox Ideas and had Brocolli theme this month, being hosted by Vardhini. Sending this yummy and quick Broccoli soup that you can put together in under 15 minutes as a quick healthy alternative too ! This soup tastes yum with tossed mushroom and slightly burnt garlic as toppings, but I skipped them this time !! In case any of you have wonderful, healthy broccoli dishes (archived and linked to the above event), do rush them to Vardhini by 30th June end of day !


Prep time : 10 mins. Cooking time : 10 mins. Serves : 2

Ingredients:
  • Broccoli - about 100 gms (cut into bit sized florets)
  • Onion - 1 large
  • Garlic - 1 pod (peeled)
  • Potato - 1 medium (peeled and cubed)
  • Olive oil - 1 tsp
  • Milk - 1/2 cup
  • Vegetable stock - 2 cups (opt)
  • Fresh cream - 1 TBSP (Opt)
  • Salt and pepper - to taste
Method:

1) In a large soup pot / pressure cooker, heat 1 tsp of olive oil.
2) Saute Onions and garlic. When onions turn translucent, add the brocolli and potatoes.
3) Stir well
4) Add 3 cups of water and 1/2 cup of milk. Add half the salt
5) Pressure cook for 2 -3 whistles.
6) Once cooked, reserve half the brocolli aside and mash up the remaining ingredients,
7) Adjust salt and pepper and add the vegetable stock. Else, use plain water to get the required consistency.
8) Let simmer for 3 -4 mins. Add the remaining brocolli, top it with fresh cream and serve hot with garlic bread or just plain toasted bread !

Tips:
1)      You may also top it with grilled mushrooms and pan seared garlic if serving to adults.

 


Check out other soups here: Healthy Tomato Soup  and Squash-Dal Shorba

June 29, 2011

Baby Corn Pulav


Soups, Pakoras, stir fry, pizzas – you name it, baby corn features as a top favourite. Today, I made a flavourful Baby Corn Pulav – a perfect One Pot Meal. Got this recipe from a friend and sending this to my own event (One Pot meals) as well as Blogging Marathon’s Day 5 (group 2) – under “7 ways to use an ingredient” and also to Priya’s Tuesday’s bookmarked event.
This dish can be eaten as it is or with curd or mixed veg raita and is a wonderful option for lunchboxes too J
Preparation time  : 10 mins. Cooking time : 20 mins. Serves: 3
Ingredients:
·         Long Grained rice – 1 cup
·         Baby corn – 1 cup (cut into 2 inch long pieces)
·         Salt – to taste
·         Onions – sliced lengthwise – 1 large or 2 small.
·         Tomatoes – 1 no
·         Garam Masala – 1 tsp (opt. – you may also use Biryani Masala powder if you have it)
·         Oil – 1  TBSP
·         Tempering : Bay leaf , Cardamom (each 1 no.),  Black pepper (1/2 tsp), Jeera / Cumin (1 tsp)
·         Green coriander – 1/8 cup (chopped)
·         For the ground masala / wet spice mixture.
o   Diced Onions – ½ cup
o   Garlic – 1 or 2 pods
o   Ginger – ½ inch stick
o   Cinnamon – ¼ inch
o   Cloves – 2
o   Green chillies – 1 or 2 (suit your taste)
o   Cashews – 1 or 2 (opt)
o   Grated coconut – 1 TBSP

Method:
1)      Wash and soak the rice for half an hour. Drain.
2)     Grind all the masala ingredients to a smooth paste using very little water.
3)     In a cooker / pan, heat oil. Add the tempering ingredients and fry lightly. Add the onions and fry again till translucent. Now add the ground masala paste and fry on a low flame till raw smell disappears –this might take 5 -6 mins.
4)     Now add garam masala powder, tomatoes and stir well.
5)     Add baby corn, rice and fry again till the masala mixture is well coated.
6)     Add 1.5 to 2 cups of water (depending on the rice quality) and cook for 2 whistles (in a pressure cooker) or till done (in an electric rice cooker / open pan). Fluff the rice a bit to separate the grains ensuring not to break the grains. Garnish with green coriander
7)     Drizzle 1 tsp of ghee (if desired) and serve hot with Raita and papad
Tips:
1) You may add green peas / carrots / capsicum to the above dish too to make it more healthy and flavourful. Also, a few strands of pudina / mint leaves may be added to the masala for a different flavour. Feel free to try out these options.
2) If cooking with pressure cooker, add hot water (1:1.5 proportion) to get a dry pulav / fried rice consistency

June 28, 2011

Mushroom Capsicum Treat

As party appetizers go, most of them are finger food and mostly deep fried. But at home, we prefer quick to make and also healthy appetizers, especially on lazy weekends,  when Salads, appetizers and soup make the most of the evening’s dinner.
Last evening, when S arrived almost 2 hours early from office and asked for something quick before dinner, I quickly scrambled this spicy and tasty appetizer – Mushroom Capsicum Treat- and it was finger licking good ! Goes well as an accompaniment to Hot Rotis and Naans (Indian breads) too J  Sending this to Blogging Marathon Day 4 under Mini bites.
Preparation time  : 10 mins. Cooking time : 10 mins. Serves: 2
Ingredients:
·         Mushrooms – 8 – 9 (medium sized)
·         Onions – 1 large (sliced lengthwise)
·         Capsicum – ½
·         Minced garlic and ginger – ½ tsp each
·         Green chilly – 1  (opt)
·         Olive Oil – 1 TBSP
·         Soya Sauce – 1 tsp
·         Vinegar  - ½ tsp
·         Salt – to taste
·         Sugar – ½ tsp
·         White pepper powder – 1 tsp
·         Spring Onion leaves chopped-  2 TBSP.
Method:
1)      Wash and clean Mushrooms thoroughly.  Slice them thin.
2)     In a wok, heat olive oil. Fry garlic, ginger and green chilly.
3)     Add onions and capsicum and fry further till onions turn slightly brown.
4)     Now add mushrooms, soya sauce, salt, vinegar and toss well.
5)     Toss till the mushrooms are done. Check for salt and add sugar.
6)     Add spring onion leaves (I didn’t have any, so didn’t add) and serve hot !
 

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