June 28, 2019

Badami Matar Paneer - Side Dish for Roti | Gluten Free Recipe

Badami Matar Paneer was one of the few dishes I liked at an all-vegan dinner party a few months ago. A friend of mine who co-hosted this party along with me prepared this dish & I took the recipe from her and made a few tweaks. She had used soft Tofu & I subbed it with Paneer as we don't like Tofu at home. It was so creamy and delicious that we absolutely loved it  !

Almonds and Kasuri methi (dried fenugreek) leaves were given by Sasmita - my paired blogger - for this edition of Sshhhh Secret Cooking Challenge and it seemed the right time to share this recipe here. Sasmita has some great food pictures on her blog, and I particularly love how she captures the beverages !! Check out here what she cooked with the ingredients I gave her. 

In the above dish, you could sub the paneer with Tofu / Tempeh for a 100% Vegan dish, but the kids loved this paneer dish a lot with Wholewheat Kalonji Naan and a salad. 

Prep time - 15 mins, Cook time - 20 mins, Serves - 4

If like my kids, you are a Paneer-loving family, do check out the following paneer-based dishes on the blog:

Nargisi Kofta Curry (Mock-Egg Gravy)
Shahi Paneer Masala (Side dish for Roti)
Paneer Pudinawale (Paneer in Mint gravy)
Paneer Tikka Manchurian
Matar - Paneer (Peas - Paneer gravy)
Paneer Potato Curry ~ Cottage cheese and Potato curry
Low fat Palak Paneer
Paneer Kulcha (stuffed flatbread)
Paneer Kebab (appetiser)
Paneer Chilli Bites (Appetiser)
Pista Rasabali (a delicious sweet from orissa)
Mini Paneer & Spinach Tarts (Appetiser)
Paneer Manchurian (indo Chinese starter)
Paneer Bharwa Shimla Mirch (Bell peppers stuffed with scrambled and spiced Paneer)
Paneer Gulab Jamun (Indian Dessert with a twist)
Paneer Aloo Paratha
Low Fat Paneer Makhanwala
Raisin and Paneer Pulav
Palak Paneer Parathas (Flat bread stuffed with spinach and Paneer)
Paneer Pav Bhaji
Methi Chaman

Paneer - 200 grams (sub with tofu if vegan)
Matar /Fresh or frozen peas - 3 handfuls
Frozen / fresh mixed veggies-  1/4 cup (I used baby corn, carrot, beans)
Salt - to taste
Oil - 2.5 TBSP
Onions - 1 small - sliced thin
Spice powders : Coriander powder 2 tsp, Cumin powder 1 tsp, Kashmiri Red chilli powder 1 tsp, Garam Masala 1.5 tsp
coriander leaves for garnish


To grind:
Badam / Almonds - 1/3 cup - soaked in hot water for an hour
Pistachio - 2 tsp
Paneer / tofu grated - 3 TBSP
Kasuri Methi - 1 tsp
Khus khus / poppy seeds - 1 tsp (soaked in hot water for 30 mins)
Onions - 1 large
Tomato - 2 large
Dalchini / Cinnamon - 1/2 inch
garlic pods - 2 large
Ginger - 1 inch 
Green chillies - 2 (adjust spice) - I used the really spicy variety

How to:

Saute the paneer cubes in a tsp of oil till slightly crisp , drain and soak in slightly salted warm water for 3-4 mins. Blanch all veggies with a pinch of salt, drain and reserve. 

In a pan, add 1 TBSP oil, saute all the ingredients under "to grind" one by one except the first 5 ingredients. Let the onions and tomatoes saute well and shrink a bit.  Cool this and grind with the rest of the ingredients to a smooth paste

In the same pan, add the remaining oil, add sliced onions and let them brown a bit, now add the ground paste and saute on low flame for 5-7 mins continuously till the oil separates. Now add the salt and spice powders and mix well. Next add the veggies and mix gently. Finally add the peas and sautéed paneer and adding 3-4 tsp of water to get to a gravy consistency if required, simmer it gently for 2-3 mins. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with Roti / Naan / Plain Pulav too 

June 24, 2019

Quick Besan Pudla with Dill | Gluten Free,Vegan Breakfast | Diabetic friendly food

Besan or Chickpea flour is a versatile GF ingredient that lends itself to both Indian and non-Indian dishes beautifully. Made from grinding Channa Dal / Whole chickpeas, Besan (Hindi) / Kadalmaavu (Tamil) / Gramflour is a choice ingredient to make Bhajiyas (fritters) or Pakoras. Besan Cheela / Chilla is also called Besan Puda / Pudla.  

For diabetics, GF and protein rich dishes make for a wonderful breakfast option. Given that this Cheela (or gram flour crepe) can be made in just 5 mins, I often make it for myself even for lunch. Add any veggies - think bottle-gourd (lauki) / grated carrots / chopped methi (fresh fenugreek) or even fresh dill (Suva bhaji) , this is a great breakfast that tastes yum as it is or with some ketchup / Coriander-mint chutney on the side. 

Do watch the youtube video embedded here and please leave your valuable comments too :-) Thanks ! 

Like the Vegan Tomato Omelette (eggless) , this too is a great option for Bachelors (bachelorettes included :p) or those living in a hostel / Dorm to rustle up something quick and healthy. 

Let’s get to making this Besan Cheela with Dill - a Vegan, GF delicious Breakfast / Snack

Prep time - 5 mins, Cook time - 5 mins, Makes - 3 Cheelas (or Crepes)

What you need:
Gramflour - 1/2 cup
Water - 2/3 cup (or as required)
Salt - to taste
Red chilli powder - 1/2 tsp (can sub with grated ginger + finely minced green chillies)
Chopped fresh Dill leaves - 2 tsp (can sub with fresh fenugreek or coriander leaves too)
Toasted Sesame seeds - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
Roasted Cumin powder - 1/2 tsp (opt. but recommended)
Cooking / baking soda - 1/8 tsp (optional)
Oil - for making the Cheela (approx 1/4~1/2 tsp per Cheela)


How to:
Whisk all the ingredients except dill. Make the batter to a flowing consistency - not too thick or too thin. Add the dill leaves, let it sit for 5 mins.
Pour a ladleful onto a heated tava, don’t spread too thin, drizzle oil around the sides. Let it brown around the edges, flip once and let it cook for 1 more min
Serve hot with green chutney / sauce. 

This goes to week #201 of #FoodieMondayBloghop where Gujarati Cuisine is featured  under the #JamvaChaloJi theme. Theme was suggested by Mayuri.

If you are like us who love Gujarati Cuisine, check out the following Gujarati recipes on the blog:

June 17, 2019

Jain style Tindora and Corn Shaak | Vegan, GF | Gujarati Side Dish

Birthdays are so special and if its the 200th, makes for a great celebration right ? At the @FoodieMondayBloghop, we are doing just that - celebrating 200 weeks of non stop blogging every Monday with a theme that’s suggested by each of the participating members by their turn. 

I have been part of a lot of other online groups too, but this group is moderated very well - its a well documented democratic process right from choosing the theme to commenting in place (and mostly meaningful commenting) and a lot of learning offline on newer trends on social media / blogging etc. 

This week the theme is unique - we are paired with another blogger in a round-robin kind of theme. So, that way blogger A chooses a recipe from the paired blogger B, and blogger B from blogger C and so on and the final blogger (alphabetically listed) cooks from blogger A.

I am paired with Mayuri - one of the members who continues to blog even while on vacation (and that’s a huge inspiration for most of us).

Mayuri’s blog - Mayuri's Jikoni- is a versatile spread of Indian and International spreads - from bakes to Gujarati khana to Kenyan cuisine (where she’s based out of). Her detailed blogposts relating the day-to-day stuff along with her committed, meaningful commenting is something I truly admire :)

With some personal work taking me in and out of town for the past 2 weeks, I had some trouble figuring out what I could cook with the ingredients on hand. Fortunately, I could decide on this Tindora-Corn Sabji that was a welcome change to our weekend meal. I served up an entire quick Gujarati Thali with this shaak (sabji / dry saute) which comprised:

Gujarati Farali Kadhi
Moong Dal Khichdi
Sev Tameta nu Shaak
Tindora-Corn nu Shaak (I hope I got the grammar right)
Raw Mango Pickle

Let’s get to Mayuri’s recipe that was made with a few changes to make a delicious satvik , Jain style, GF, Vegan side dish Tindora and Corn Shaakthat goes great with Dal-Rice or even Thepla / Rotla/ Roti. 

Prep time - 15 mins, Cook time - 15 mins, serves - 2~3
Tindora / Ivy gourd / Tendli / Kovakkai - 200 grams
Sweet corn - boiled - 1/2 cup
Tempering : Cumin seeds 1/2 tsp, mustard 1 tsp, chopped green chilli 1/2 tsp
Cashewnuts - 2 tsp (chopped coarse)
Oil - 3 tsp (mixed use)
spices - turmeric , red chilli powder, Dhanu-Jiru - to taste
Fresh Grated coconut - 1/2 TBSP
Salt , sugar - to taste
Lemon juice - 1 tsp
Chopped coriander - for garnish

How to:
Trim the tindora and chop into roundels (not too thick or thin). In a grill pan, brush 2 tsp of oil liberally, place the chopped tindora on this medium- hot pan and sprinkle salt . Saute without disturbing them , tossing from time to time till they turn crisp (the original recipe from Mayuri had deep fried the tindora so you could do that too if preferred). Remove to a plate once slightly crispy.
In another kadai / pan, add the remaining oil. Add the cumin and other ingredients for tempering. Then add the corn, cashwenuts - saute for a minute more.
Now add the other dry spices and toss, add coconut, sautéed ivy gourd and salt. 
Adjust salt and spices. Turn off flame. Finish with lemon juice and chopped coriander leaves. 

June 15, 2019

Kadle Manoli Sukka Recipe | Mangalorean dish with Ivy Gourd + Chickpeas | GF and Vegan dish

Growing up in Bangalore, many of our dishes were from local influences of the state- be it Sankranti Ellu Bella (Sesame seeds and Jaggery Trail mix) , Mysore Rasam, Undlige (steamed rice rava cakes) from Udupi cuisine, Smartha Brahmin’s Heerehaki Huli Thovve, the popular Darshini Kharabath, Menthye Bataani Bhaath from Bangalore and so on.

Today, we travel to Mangalore - a coastal city of Karnataka - for this lip smacking dry-saute with Ivygourd and Chickpeas. I had posted Mangalorean Sajjige Rotti earlier. 

Called Manoli Kadle or Kadle Manoli Sukka, this goes well with both hot chapatis and hot rice+ghee+rasam / Saaru.  We had this dish  with Jeera Milagu Rasam (cumin pepper rasam), Carrot Kosambari, Tomato Thokku and piping hot rice. 

I was paired with Lathiya for this month’s edition of Recipe Swap Challenge. Its an interesting take on blog hopping where we recreate a post from our paired blogger for the month. Lathiya has an interesting blog replete with eye catching photographs and a lot of dishes for egg lovers. I have adapted her dish- Black Channa Tindora Masala with a few changes to suit my family’s palate.  

This dish is usually made with onions and garlic, but as we use them very sparingly I have made it without it. I have eaten both variations growing up and they are equally tasty.  Similarly, both white and black chickpeas are used, and I have used the former. 

Off to the recipe now.

Kadle Manoli Sukka - A vegan, satvik, GF side dish from Mangalorean / Tulu Cuisine

Prep time - 10 mins, Cook time - 10 mins, Serves - 2~3

White chickpeas  - cooked (I used precooked and frozen chickpeas, which I brought to room temperature) - 1 cup
Ivygourd / Manoli / Tendli / Tondekayi / Dondakaya - 250 grams - slit lengthwise into 2 or 4 slices
Oil - 2 tsp
Tempering : Mustard seeds , Curry leaves
jaggery - 1/2 tsp
Tamarind paste - 1/2 tsp
Salt - to taste
Turmeric-  1/2 tsp

To grind:
Fresh coconut - 1/2 cup
Byadgi chillies / kashmiri variety - 2 nos.
Red chilli / spicy chillies - 2 nos
Coriander seeds - 1 1/2 tsp
Jeera - 1 tsp
Methi seeds / fenugreek - 1/2 tsp

How to:
Steam ivy gourds with a pinch of salt, turmeric till 80% done. Drain and keep aside. Boil the cooked and frozen chickpeas in salted water for 3-4 mins till soft. drain. If using fresh chickpeas (black or white), soak overnight and cook till soft , drain all water and reserve.  
In a pan , saute all the masala grind ingredients one by one in 1 tsp of oil except coconut. Switch off the flame, add the coconut and saute till the coconut turns slightly brown. Grind to a semi-wet paste without adding too much water. 
Add this to the steamed veggies, saute a bit. Now add the salt, tamarind, jaggery, chickpeas and saute well. Adjust salt, spices
Serve warm with Rice + Rasam for a filling meal. 

June 14, 2019

Vengaya Vattalkozhambu - a guestpost by Priya Iyer | Guestpost series #19

Vattalkozhambu or a tangy gravy made sans vegetables (or using just a few or dried condiments) is a lip smacking dish that is a hallmark of Tambrahm households. Continuing our guest post series here on Sizzling Tastebuds , our guestblogger Priya Iyer shares her heirloom recipe that she learnt from her mom & grandma with us. Priya who blogs at The Photowali is an excellent travel+ food blogger and is a cooking enthusiast too ! I haven't met her yet but we hit it off majorly as we blog in a few common online blogging groups. Her no-nonsense approach to life, and her vibrant pictures across various cuisines is something that appeals to me. 

Let's move over to Priya in her own words. Thank you Priya, for doing this yummilicous guest post for me. I sure would like to taste this when we catch at your hometown soon ! 

And dear readers, do make sure to read all her tips and tricks in the detailed Notes section at the end of the post 

Vengaya Vattalkozhambu | Onions cooked in tangy tamarind gravy

When Kalyani got in touch with me regarding a guest post on her blog, she told me to write about a family recipe that has always been comforting to me, and which I hold close to my heart. After a bit of thinking, I decided to share this Vengaya Vattalkozhambu recipe, the way my mom makes it.  

I have to thank Kalyani from the bottom of my heart for allowing me to share this recipe that is so close to my heart, allowing me to experience once again all those fond memories that are associated with it. I haven’t had a chance to meet Kalyani yet, but we have interacted more than a few times, being a part of the same foodie groups on Facebook. She comes across as a warm, humble and jovial person, someone who loves cooking – her passion for cooking clearly evident on her blog. Sizzling Tastebuds  is a treasure trove of recipes, including some age-old Tam-Brahm ones and several world foods, and I am glad to have a chance for one of my recipes to be published therein. 

Vengaya Vattalkozhambu, for the uninitiated, refers to onions cooked in a flavourful, tangy tamarind gravy. The Tam-Brahm way of making it is very simple, needing just a few ingredients. In fact, Amma tells me that, in the olden days, women would make vattalkozhambu in times when funds were low or when the house pantry didn’t have much to offer for any reason. It is a versatile dish that can be made using quite a few vegetables, and onion is one of those.  

Vattalkozhambu takes bare minutes to prepare, but is a finger-licking delicious confection that has the power to soothe your soul. At least, it does for me. This dish spells out ‘home’ to me. I remember Grandma - and my mother after her - preparing onion vattalkozhambu on good and bad days, as it was so much loved by everyone in the family. The mere smell of the gravy cooking was enough to bring a smile on my face, and that remains the same till date. No wonder this is the dish I resort to making when I am down or on days when I want to eat something hearty, but am clueless about what to make. 

Onion Vattalkozhambu, in my opinion, is best had with hot, steamed rice with cooked toor daal mixed in, with a little salt and ghee. Best combination ever! Appa loves having it with plain parathas and potato roast. For the purpose of this guest post, I served it with toor daal rice and potato roast, making a veritable feast out of it. 

So, without further ado, here’s presenting the recipe for Vengaya Vattalkozhambu a la Amma. Do try it out and let me know how you like it, will you? 

Ingredients (serves 4):
  1. 2 medium-sized onions 
  2. A gooseberry-sized ball of tamarind
  3. 1 tablespoon sesame oil 
  4. teaspoon mustard seeds 
  5. a generous pinches of asafoetida 
  6. A pinch of fenugreek seeds
  7. 2 sprigs of fresh curry leaves
  8. 2-3 dry red chillies 
  9. Salt to taste
  10. ½ teaspoon turmeric powder 
  11. Red chilli powder to taste 
  12. 1-1/2 tablespoon sambar powder 
  13. 1-1/2 tablespoon jaggery powder or to taste
  14. 1 tablespoon rice flour 

  1. Soak the tamarind in a little warm water for at least 10 minutes. When it has turned soft, extract all the juice from it adding about a cupful of water, a little at a time. Keep aside. 
  2. Meanwhile, peel the onions and chop them finely. Keep aside. 
  3. Heat the oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds and allow them to sputter. Add in the fenugreek seeds, curry leaves, dry red chillies (each broken into two) and asafoetida. Let them stay in for a couple of seconds. 
  4. Now, add the chopped onions to the pan. Saute on medium flame till they begin to turn brown. 
  5. Add the tamarind extract to the pan. Cook on medium heat for 2-3 minutes, or till the raw smell of the tamarind goes away. Stir intermittently. 
  6. Keeping the flame on medium, add about 1-1/2 cups of fresh water to the pan, along with salt to taste, sambar powder, turmeric powder, red chilli powder and jaggery powder. Mix well. 
  7. In a small bowl, make a slurry of the rice flour with a little water. Make sure there are no lumps. Add this slurry to the pan. Mix well. 
  8. Cook on medium flame for 3-4 minutes more, or till the gravy thickens slightly. Stir intermittently. Switch off gas. Serve hot or at room temperature with plain rice or rice with toor dal mixed in it. 

  1. Shallots or small sambar onions can be used in place of the red onions I have used here. 
  2. For best results, use good-quality tamarind. 
  3. If the tamarind you are using has impurities, do strain the extract before using it in making the vattalkozhambu
  4. Adjust the quantity of water you use, depending upon the consistency of the vattalkozhambu you require. 
  5. I use home-made sambar powder in the vattalkozhambu, which isn’t very spicy. So, I add a bit of red chilli powder for spiciness. You may skip the red chilli powder altogether if the sambar powder you are using is spicy enough. 
  6. Adjust the quantity of jaggery powder you use, depending upon personal taste preferences. I would not suggest skipping it, because it adds a lovely flavour to the vattalkozhambu
  7. Sesame oil aka gingelly oil or nalla ennai works best in the making of vattalkozhambu. You can even use more oil if you so prefer. 
  8. You can use wheat flour to make the slurry too, in place of the rice flour. Make sure there are no lumps in the slurry, before adding it to the pan. 

June 10, 2019

Eggless Sugar free Ragi Banana Bundt Cake

Ragi a.k.a finger millet - a love, hate relationship most kids (and adults) have over their life. Although they say its an acquired taste, mostly its a hate-all kind of ingredient for most of us. Teeming with calcium and other vitals, this millet is often best served to kids and adults (for those who are not used to it since childhood or cant develop a taste for it) in a disguised form. Ragi is an excellent food for #diabetics too since it releases the sugar very slowly into the bloodstream. 

For those of us who can take it in any form, this millet presents itself in so many delicious dishes such as

(Do check out for more Ragi recipes and pics at the end of this post...)

So, why are we talking Ragi today? Poonam - the host of this week’s Week #199RagiTales - has chosen this wonderful millet for FoodieMondayBloghop Challenge. I love her blog for two things mainly - the pictures are sooooo vibrant, and her eggless, no-refined-sugar has my attention always :-) 

My kids are on the other spectrum of ragi consumption so its best served in a sneaky , tasty chocoaltey form as Eggless , Sugarfree Ragi Banana Bundt Bread - with no refined sugars, this making for an excellent after-school snack / short break snack box food. 

I have adapted Poonam’s recipe wholly with one major change and I must admit it was one of the tastiest Ragi bakes (or sweet bakes, in fact) that I have ever made, if I say so myself.  Thank you Poonam, for an awesomely healthy AND refined-sugar-free and butter free recipe. My mom loved it a lot, and so did the kids (and psst. yes they still don’t know that it contained Ragi, although my elder one did say it was ‘differernt, but yummy’) 

Prep time - 15 mins, Bake time - 30-32 mins, Makes - 6 medium sized bundt cakes + 2 largish muffins


What you need: (all measurements are 1 cup = 200ml)

Dry ingredients:
Whole-wheat flour / atta - 3/4 cup
Ragi hurittu (popped ragi flour) - 3/4 cup + 2 tsp
Baking soda - 1/2 tsp
Baking powder - 1 tsp
Salt - 1/8 tsp
Cocoa powder - 2 TBSP + 1/2 tsp ( I used Dutch processed sugar free)

Wet ingredients:
Ripe Banana - 3 largish 
Olive oil - 1/4 cup
Curd/yoghurt - 1/3 cup
Vanilla essence - 1 tsp
Jaggery powder- 1 cup

Optional but recommended - walnuts (chopped into tiny bits) - 2 tsp 

How to:

Pre heat oven to 180 C. Grease the muffin pans / bundt pans slightly or a large 7 inch pan (and line it). 
Sieve the dry ingredients thrice over.
In another bowl, fork down the cut bananas to a puree ,add yoghurt , oil. vanilla essence and whisk till bananas are completely blended. Add the powdered jaggery and whisk again for 3-4 mins till completely dissolved. You should get a honey coloured liquid at this stage.    
dust the chopped walnuts in a tsp of the sifted flour and keep aside. 
Add the dry mix to the wet mix and fold slowly in batches using the cut and fold method. 
Fold in the walnuts gently and do not leave any dry streaks in the flour. 
Pour / spoon this batter gently into the greased pan / bundt moulds / muffin moulds. 
Bake for 30-32 mins or until a skewer comes out clean. 
Rest on a wire rack, unmould when completely done. 
Serve warm.
The leftover keeps up to 4-5 days under refrigeration. Microwave for 10-15 secs and serve warm  

Other recipes with Ragi on this blog

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