October 15, 2011

Baked Kothmir Vadi - Baked Coriander Snack - Guest post for Jabeen via Bonjour Series

Happy to present my guest post written for Jabeen's blog as part of her guespost series - Bonjour. Today's dish - Baked Kothmir Vadi -  is a small giveback to Mumbai, my current city. I truly enjoyed writing for Jabeen and as she requested, with a small background on myself and this city too. Thanks Jabeen for this wonderful opportunity ! Kothmir Vadi is a scrumptious snack seen all over Mumbai and Maharashtra. Usually steamed and then deep fried, I have baked this after after steaming it in my maiden venture to make the same. Its a wonderful appetiser / snack for any party / potluck including high tea etc.


Sending this to : Archana's Fast food not Fat food, event by priya , Appetisers event @ Manjula's kitchenHCC healthy Bakes - event @ Priya's blog , originally by Smita and also to Kid's Delight event @ Srivalli's space.


Read on here for the full post and the recipe :-)





October 14, 2011

Radish stir fry with Moong Dal ~ Mulangi Palya


One of childhood's earliest memories was of Amma (mom) or Paati (grandmom) making sambhar with Raddish and we used to play with the thick roundels of steamed raddish in the broth by slowly peeling off the skin of the roundel and wrapping it around our thin fingers like it was the greatest accomplishment on earth . I remember that me n sis used to even compete on how many such rings we could each peel off without breaking ! Golden days :-) Now, why am I speaking about raddish sambhar when the post clearly says its Raddish Stir fry ? Coz till very recently (read about a decade), we had no idea what else could be made from raddish, apart from Mooli Paratha and Sambhar. And then one day, mom discovered that raw grated raddish made for very good Kosambari (South Indian Salad) and was great for the heart too. Despite the rather pungent smell that raw / cooked raddish gives off, its heartening to read that raddish is very good for liver related ailments, weight loss, cardiac 

ailments. And then also realised that steamed raddish can also be made into a stir fry. 


So, today's dish is a simple stir fry that you can put together. It tastes great with hot rice and any sambhar (gravy) or even curd rice and pickle. Do check out similar dry curries here.


Sending this to Suma's MLLA,  event by Susan and also to Anyone Can Cook by Umm.

Prep time ; 10 mins, Cooking time : 15 mins. Serves : 2

Ingredients:
  • Radish - 1 large (or 2 medium)
  • Moong Dal / Split green gram - 2 handfuls (1/5 cup approx) 
  • Oil - 1 tsp
  • Tempering : Mustard seeds, curry leaves, red chiiles (2), asafoetida (a pinch)
  • Salt - to taste
  • Turmeric - a dash (opt.)
  • Grated coconut and coriander leaves for garnish.


Method:
1) in a bowl of hot water, wash and soak moong dal for 10 mins. Meanwhile, wash, peel and cut raddish to bite sized bits.
2) Steam cook the dal and the radish for 1 or 2 whistles with minimum water. Drain.
3) In a skillet, heat oil and add the tempering. Once the mustard stops spluttering, add the turmeric and boiled radish-dal combo (ensure both of them are not over cooked, but just al dente). Stir once
4) Add salt, adjust seasonings and grated coconut / coriander for garnish. Voila ! perfectly cooked radish stir fry ready in minutes :-) 

October 12, 2011

Herby Cheese Pizza , with an Indian twist

Another edition of Blog Hop Wednesdays is upon us. This week, I am paired with Archana. Her menu card offered me quite a choice , and I selected Bread Pizza. As always, I was keen to give this a slight twist - so used store bought base but gave this a totally Indian Twist using cumin powder and such Indian Masalas, along with the usual suspects like Oregano and Basil. And the result - Herby Cheese Pizza -  was a super hit!  The only thing which I would have preferred for this post is pix with natural light, but had to be contended with the ones taken indoors as the overcast sky offered very little hope for clear snaps ! Without much ado, lets get on to the recipe. You may make this for kids party or dinner. Am sure it would be a hit with kids and adults alike :-) Surely enough, you can also play around with the toppings with veg / non veg options. I loved this recipe especially as I used homemade pizza sauce as the base (reipe below) and the taste was heavenly.




Before we move on, a quick recap of the last 5 weeks of Bloghop where I dished out:


Sugarfree Date n Almond MuffinsBaked SamosaDal Vada (Paruppu Vadai) - step by step recipeSugarfree Ginger MocktailBharwa Bhindi Jain Style


Today's dish goes to Blog hop wednesdays as well as Susan's BWW and my own event - Global Food festival (100 days of global food), and Fastfood not fat Food by Archana, event my Priya


Prep time : 20 mins. Baking time : 16 mins. Makes : 2 medium sized pizzas


Ingredients:


  • Pizza base ( I used store bought) - 2 nos
  • Oil - 1 TBSP or butter
  • Salt - to taste
Pizza Sauce:
  • Tomato puree - 1 cup
  • Peeled garlic - 1 small pod
  • Onions - 1 no (grated)
  • Red chilli - 1 no (soaked in water)
  • Salt
Topping:
  • Onion rings - 5 to 6
  • Capsicum / bell pepper - 1 no (cut into roundels)
  • Tomato - thick slices - 8 to10 nos
  • Pineapple chunks - few 
  • Grated processed cheese - 1 cup
Spice powder mix:
  • Oregano + Basil - 1 tsp
  • Garam Masala - 1 tsp
  • Jeera / cumin powder - 1/2 tsp
Method:


1) Grind the ingredients of the pizza sauce into a fine puree. Heat 1 tsp of oil and lightly saute this for about 2 - 4 mins till the raw smell disappears. Keep aside.


2) Preheat oven to 180 Deg C and grease the baking tray with cooking spray


3) Take a pizza base. lightly grease with olive oil. Apply 1 TBSP of the pizza sauce. Arrange the toppings. Sprinkle the spice powder mix. Top again with processed cheese. Bake @ 180 deg C for 12 - 14 mins, and then set to grill for 2 mins more till you see the cheese melting.


4) Repeat with the other pizza base. Serve with tomato ketchup ;-)


Yummylicious homemade veg cheesy pizza is ready to be devoured :-)



October 11, 2011

Corn Almond Kurma ~ Corn and Almond in spicy gravy ~ Side dish for Chapati

There was literally a deluge of corn last week with me and S both picking up corn cobs during grocery shopping. So, while most of the time, we love to steam them whole and devour them with salt and chilli powder, I chanced to see this post by Nithya which intrigued me quite a bit and bookmarked it immediately to make it. This must be one of those posts which got done as soon as I bookmarked it :-) I wanted to give this a twist by adding blanched almonds in place of the usual cashew for Kurma, and the result was a nutty flavoured Kurma which went very well with phulkas / chapatis for dinner last night :-) I would definitely increase the spice next time, and even kiddo who is averse to such concoctions also lapped it up happily, which was kind of a relief coz her daily quota of veggies came in through this dish :-)





October 10, 2011

7 tags linking game

Its been quite a while since Sangee tagged me in the now popular 7 links game thats doing the rounds in the blogosphere. I had this in my drafts but never got around to publishing. So, here they are :


Category 1 : The most beautiful post(s) have to be Healthy Potato Roast & Cheesy Snacklets 



Category 2: The most Popular posts(s) to me (by sheer virtue of number of comments) are: Baked Samosa & Sugarfree Ginger Mocktail




Category 3: Most controversial Post till now : Thankfully I am spared of any ;)


Category 4 : Most Helpful post : how to make Jain style Green Chutney




Category  5 : The post(s) that was surprisingly successful have to be Palak Paneer Parathas with Tomato Chilli Relish & Baked Tacos with Tomato Salsa Dip (Both were combo meals)





Category 6 : The post(s) that didnt get the attention it deserved : Thayirvadai (Curd Vada) and Nelli Pachadi (Gooseberry chutney)





Category 7 : A post that I am proud of - Actually there are two of them : Instant Healthy Dhokla and Low Calorie Basil Chilli Cheese Toast





Now, as per the game's rules, I am playing it forward and tagging seven of my friends to take this game ahead :



October 9, 2011

100 yummy treats in an e-book for Diwali by Indus Ladies

I am re-posting the following recipe for the E-book by Indus Ladies. Check out the details of the book in the following post.


Ragi Besan Ladoo







Following post by Indus Ladies:


For the upcoming Diwali on October 26th, 2011, we at Indusladies are compiling an E-Book called “100 Yummy Diwali SweetRecipes”. We are collecting sweet/dessert recipes from various bloggers to be featured in this E-Book. 

This E-book will be made available as a free download to our community's 1.3 Lakh+ members.
 In addition, we will also be making this E-Book available to our 9000+ Facebook fans and Twitter followers. It's LOTS and LOTS of exposure to those food blogs entering the E-Book!! 
We believe this would be a nice way to get the word out about a wonderful blog to the entire membership of IndusLadies!!

Those bloggers interested in submitting a recipe for this E-Book...all you need to do is as follows:
1. Send a link from your blog for a sweet / dessert recipe. It should also include the picture of the sweet/dessert. Your recipe, foodpicture, recipe URL as well as the entire blog URL will get featured in the E-Book.
2. In return, we need you to do two things:
Now make a blog post in your blog announcing the E-Book compilation by IndusLadies and the recipe you are sending for this E-Book. That way inviting your co-bloggers interested to send in their contribution by Oct 10th,2011.

Between Oct 11 and Oct 26, make a blog post featuring the E-Book and announcing it is available for FREE download in IndusLadies. We will be providing you sooner with the picture of the E-Book’s cover page that you will use to include in this blog post.

Come on...hurry! What are you waiting for?? 
Send a sweet/dessert recipe link from your blog to partners@indusladies.com by Oct 8th, 2011.

Ask your fellow food boggers to send a sweet/dessert recipe from their blog to partners@indusladies.com by Oct 8th, 2011.

October 8, 2011

Maa Vilakku for Purattasi Saturday | Iyengar Festival Recipe

Today's post is not so much a recipe, as its a recollection of Maa Vilakku Pooja for Purattasi Saturdays. In Srivaishnava community, during the month of Purattasi (Mid August/Mid September) on a Saturday, a lamp made of rice flour with added jaggery, Cashew, Ghee is lit. Normally, this is done on any one of the odd-numbered Saturdays(1st / 3rd / 5th) of Purattasi Tamil month.Many of the Tamilians [irrespective of the Sect & sub-sects] offer Maavilakku to the GOD of their choice; Amman, Perumal, Murugan ; in temples or at their homes. In Shaivites custom, they offer this on the 1st Aadi and 1st Thai Vellikizhamai [Kataka/Karkatam and Makara months' first Friday]. I remember my paati (grandmom) making this on a saturday, and its gooey concoction of aroma filled dish used to arouse our palates to no end. Of course, I cant imagine to use the same amount of ghee that she used to use (or even the same amount of fresh coconut). So mom n me devised this simple to make, yet ethnic Maa Vilakku dish to light the lamp. Also, the smell of the burnt wick (after the lamp dies out in the flour mix) may not be appetising to all. So we made a small roundel which had the lamp, and offered along with the bigger one (which is considered as a symbol of Malaiyappan (Lord of the hills - Srinivasa Perumal or Balaji).


Like I said earlier, this is not really a recipe, but a note for posterity to preserve some of the family tradition. So, let's get on how to make this.



You will need:

  • Rice flour - 1 cup
  • Jaggery - 1 cup
  • Grated coconut - 1/2 cup
  • Grated nutmeg - a pinch
  • Elaichi / cardamom powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Pachai Karpooram / edible camphor - teeny weeny pinch
  • Ghee - 3 TBSP

Method:


1) Grate Jaggery finely or pound into very small pieces.
2) Mix rice flour, jaggery and coconut well for about 8 - 10 minutes till they finely incorporate into each other. You may need to extend this for 5 more minutes depending on how coarse the rice flour is. Do remember to sieve the rice flour before use.
3) One the jaggery melts with all the kneading, add the ghee, cardamom powder, nutmeg, edible camphor and mix lightly till you get to make a roundel without adding any water. Make a big roundel for distributing as prashad (naivedyam) and a smaller one to light the lamp in 
4) Make a dent with your thumb on the smaller roundel and place a ghee soaked wick in the  dent. Add a tsp of ghee and light the lamp and complete the pooja. Once the lamp dies down, distribute the roundels as bits of prasadam.

October 7, 2011

Lavang Latika, and a lovely Guest Post by Radhika of Tickling Palates (Guest Post Series # 2)

Radhika of Tickling Palates is a wonderful blogger and has, over the past few months grown to be my to-go dear blogger friend. Her wonderful event - Blog Hop Wednesdays - is quite a rage in the blogging world, of which I am also a part of. When I asked her to do a guest post for this blog some time ago, she so sweetly agreed, and also has presented a traditional sweet - Lavang Latika along with describing how the palate of Chennaiites (her current city) has evolved over the years, yet the local food of Idli-Sambhar never failing to tickle your palate (no pun intended!) .. 


Read on for Radhika's wonderful post (reproduced here from the original text) and the yummy recipe too. Thank you,Radhika for your time:-)  



Radhika says:

I’m so happy to be doing a guest post for Kalyani (who blogs at this blog -Sizzling Tastebuds) , who has become a very close friend in the past few months. I wanted to do something very traditional and unique considering the festive month of the year. So I chose this “Lavang Latika” from my Grandmother’s kitchen which is prepared during Diwali time at home. The one question put to me by her that really got my attention was how the people of Chennai, youngsters to be exact are taking on the food revolution. With so many expats in the city I would say that Chennai has emerged as one of the popular food hubs in the country. Today’s youngster is well educated, well travelled and is able to handle any cuisine like a Pro. Their knowledge of International cuisine is not any more limited only to noodles and pizzas. This can be felt just by looking around the city as it has become home to many restaurants specializing not only in Multi cuisines but also many are dedicated to a particular type of cuisine pertaining to a particular country. The youngsters of today do not hesitate to experiment and explore with food. They do not restrict themselves to visiting the popular food joints but have also started cooking various cuisines at home itself. You only have to visit the food malls to find out this fact as the shelves are stacked and over flowing with so many international brands vying for our attention, just waiting to be picked up and used for consumption. You may grow, branch out and spread in your search for adventure but the roots still remain where they are. They always come home to idli, vadai and sambar for breakfast and I’m sure you will all agree that nothing can beat hot sambar rice or vattha kulambu with a dash of ghee. No matter what, traditional food is just incomparable especially in terms of health aspect. Now let’s go to one such traditional recipe ... Lavang Latika

You’ll need:
  • All Purpose Flour - 1 cup
  • Ghee - 2 tbsp
  • Salt - 1 pinch
  • Water - To knead
  • Sugar  - 3/4 cup
  • Cardamom Powder - 1/4 tsp
  • Milk - 2 tbsp
  • Cloves - As needed
  • Oil  -   For Deep Frying
  For Stuffing:
  • Khoya / Mava – ¼ cup
  • Almonds – 7 -8
  • Cashew nuts – 7  - 8
  • Powdered sugar – 4 tbsp
  • Milk / rose water – few drops
 Method:

For the Dough: In a bowl place all purpose flour with salt and mix well. Add ghee and rub with your fingers till they resemble bread crumbs. Add water little by little and make soft dough. Let it rest for at least 1/2 hour. Keep the dough closed with a damp cloth.
For the Sugar Syrup: Heat 1/2 cup of water in a vessel. Add sugar and let it dissolve completely. Add the milk at this stage and when the scum separates remove with a ladle or filter the syrup by passing it through a sieve. Cook further over low flame till you get to the one string consistency. Switch off stove and add cardamom powder. Keep it warm.
For the Stuffing: Coarsely powder the almonds and cashew nuts. In a bowl crumble and mash khoya. Add the powdered nuts, sugar and mix well. If it is dry add few drops of milk or rose water to make it moist. Keep aside.

How to make Latikas: 
Take a small lemon size ball from the dough and flatten it like you would for a poori. 

 
We are going to make an envelope here. Bring the opposite edges as shown in the picture.

Apply pressure gently so that they can stick well. Insert a clove in the center as securing it with a pin. 

How to proceed:  Heat oil in a kadai. Slip the latikas one by one and cook till golden brown and crisp. Drain on a kitchen paper and immediately put them in the sugar syrup. Let it soak for at least half an hour and then it is ready to serve.

How I made it: Usually Grandma deep fries them in ghee which I just can’t imagine  doing so. So I cheated by adding a few tbsps of ghee to the oil to not to miss out on the flavor part. Also I cooked the sugar syrup to 2 string consistency which she also does as it would make storage easier. The sugar syrup will coat the lavang latikas well and it would be easy to serve too.

Notes:
  • If you are unable to get hold of Khoya you can also use “paal kova” but leave out the sugar.
  • You can also coconut stuffing used for poli as a variant.
  • You can also add any food color to the sugar syrup.
 Enjoy this Diwali with this traditional sweet.

October 6, 2011

Konda Kadalai Sundal ~ Black Channa Sundal, and Navaratri Wishes to all !

Wishing all my readers a very Happy Dusherra / Navratri ! May Goddess Durga bestow the best of health and happiness to all. I am sure we are all done with atleast 9 - 10 varieties of Sundal this season. I shall post another variety today - with Black Channa Dal Sundal / Konda Kadalai Sundal. Like other sundals, this too is made the same way. But as this is offered as Naivedyam (offering to the Goddess), it is made sans Onion and Garlic. But on other days, please feel free to add both for a spicier version. Let's get on to the recipe now.




Sending this to Suma's MLLA # 40 , event by Susan, Radhika's Hibernating Foods, Krithi's Festival potluck

Similar dishes  :  Kadale paruppu sundal & Payiru Sundal (green gram salad)


Prep time : 15 mins. Soaking time + Cooking time : 10 - 12 hours. Makes : Approx 200 gms of Sundal


Ingredients:

  • Black Channa / Kala Channa / Konda Kadalai - 2 cups
  • Salt - to taste
  • Tempering : Oil (1 TBSP), Mustard seeds, Urad Dal - 1 TBSP, Red chillies - 2 
  • Grated ginger - 1 tsp
  • Asafoetida / Hing - a generous pinch
  • Coriander leaves + curry leaves - a handful
  • Grated coconut - 1 TBSP

Method:


1) Wash and Soak the Kala channa in tepid water for 8 - 10 hours or overnight.
2) Drain the water and add fresh water and pressure cook with a pinch of salt for 4 - 5 whistles. Uncover and drain all the cooked water from the lentils (I use this water in Tomato Rasam) 
3) Prepare the tempering with oil, mustard seeds, ginger, red chillies, urad dal, curry leaves and asafoetida. When the dal has browned, add the boiled lentils and salt. 
4) Stir well and add grated coconut, coriander leaves for garnish. Serve as prasad / naivedyam

October 5, 2011

Healthy Potato Roast, fingerlickin good :-)

I always thought I had posted this dish, but my menu card told me otherwise. Wondered why because this dish is a staple almost every week. Tasting yummy with curd rice or with phulkas (Indian flat bread) alike, this is something that is my paternal grandmom's signature dish. Made without onion, it also features on the festival menu most of the time and goes very well with Morkozhambu (south Indian Curd gravy) and hot rice ! Slurp ! A breeze to make, most of the time, the crust (roasted texture) comes from deep frying the potatoes. But given the fact that my family prefers low oil, I found this easy and healthy way to create the crust without deep frying or compromising its taste. Try it once, and you would definitely believe its finger licking good :-) Adjust spice according to taste. It definitely tastes better spicier;-)


Now, off to the recipe !
Similar recipes : 


Prep time : 15  mins. Cooking time : 10 mins. Serves : 3


Ingredients:

  • Good quality potatoes - 3/4 kg (medium sized 8 - 9)
  • Oil - 1 TBSP (I use Olive oil)
  • Salt - to taste
  • Tempering : Oil (1 tsp) + mustard seeds + curry leaves

Spice powder mix : 

  • Gram flour - 1 TBSP
  • Red Chilli powder - 1/2 TBSP
  • Rice Powder - 2 TBSP
  • Turmeric - a dash
  • Amchur / Raw Mango Powder - 1 TBSP



Method:


1) Boil potatoes with skin on with minimum water for 2 whistles.
2) Drain all water, and quarter them (if using really large potatoes, try 1/6 or 1/8 pieces, but keep them chunky)
3) Mix all the ingredients of the spice mix along with salt. Toss in the boiled potatoes and ensure each piece of the potato is coated with the spice mixture well.
4) Keep for 5 - 8 minutes.
5) In a non stick kadai, add oil and prepare the tempering. Now add the spice mix coated potatoes and any remaining spice powder into the pan. Give it a nice toss and add in the 1 TBSP oil now.
6) Cook for 6 - 10 more minutes, WITHOUT covering while tossing them from time to time.  
7) If you want it a little more crusty, leave it on medium heat undisturbed for 9 - 10 more minutes.
8) Serve hot with Mysore Rasam or Curd rice. Yummy meal :-)




The b/w picture goes to Susan's BWW 

October 3, 2011

Corn Choliya Bhel

One of the simplest snacks I have put together is today's post - Corn Choliya Bhel. Totally oil free, filling and proteinicious - and is a total hit with kiddo too !! This was lying in my drafts for a long time as I was thinking this is not worth a post at all. Until last week, when I got talking to one of my friends on oil free snacks that she could send to kiddo at school. And the brainwave was to post it.. 


Gave her the recipe, and she totally loved it ! For those who are still wondering what Choliya means, its nothing but green Garbanzo beans. I loved this dish a lot coz I also got to use my homemade Green Chutney with this and it was a super hit. You can play around with the ingredients quite a lot, but I chose this to be a little less spicy as kiddo was having this. You could also make this as a quick fix when you are back from the gym, and its totally guilt free. Let's get on to the recipe now ! 
 
Check out other Bhel / Chaat items here. Sending this to Suma's MLLA event

Notes:
1) If you do not have baked choliya, soak and boil the beans till soft with a pinch of salt. Drain well and add.
2) If you are using Lemon Bhel (which is available in most parts of India now), dont add the lemon juice again to the dish.

Prep time : 10 mins. No cook time. Serves : 2

Ingredients :

  • Murmura / puffed rice - 3 cups
  • American corn shelled - 1/2 cup
  • Baked Cholia - 1 cup
  • Nylon sev - 1/4 cup
  • Green Chutney - 1 tsp
  • Onions finely diced- 1/4 cup
  • Lemon juice - a dash
  • Green chillies - 1/2 (opt)
  • Green coriander and mint leaves - few
  • Chaat Masala - a dash
  • Sweet chutney / Jaggery - a pinch

Optional veggies you can add : Deseeded & diced tomatoes, shredded carrots, boiled peas, cubed and boiled potato, diced capsicum, sprouted moong

Method:
1) Boil the American corn for 2 whistles or microwave with a pinch of salt for 10 mins. 
2) Add all the ingredients except murmura and nylon sev and mix well. Add murumura just before serving and give it a nice toss. 
3) Top with nylon sev and serve immediately.





 

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