Authentic Recipes from the Kitchens of Shriya, Nithu & Arthi!

Homemade Grape Juice

Posted by on Nov 13, 2013 in Beverages & Drinks | 3 comments

Do you have a lot of grapes sitting in your refrigerator for a long time? Then it’s time to make some grape juice. I was bored of eating all the grapes by myself and I thought why not make some juice which will be refreshing. It also has a lot of anti-oxidants and other benefits. It is very easy to make and nothing is better than a fresh homemade juice. You can cut down the sugar or even avoid it if you like. Enjoy!! Preparation time: 20 minutes No. of servings: 8 Ingredients: Black grapes – 1.5 lb ( 680 grams) Sugar – 1/2 cup Juice from one lemon Method of Preparation: Wash grapes, remove from their stem. Grind it in a blender until smooth. Strain it through a wire mesh or a strainer and extract the juice. Grind...

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Paneer Jalebi – Chanar Jalebi

Posted by on Nov 6, 2013 in Desserts, Diwali Recipes, Slideshow | 5 comments

Paneer Jalebi or Chanar Jalebi is a delicious cheese dessert made with fresh cottage cheese or paneer. It will be a nice variation from the regular jalebi. It is airy, soft and juicy. My fried told me about this dish and she asked me give it a try. I am glad I did. It turned out so good and I loved it. Try this dish for any special occasions or festivals and enjoy with your family. Preparation time: 90 minutes Yield: 18 to 20 Ingredients: Fresh Paneer – 1 cup Corn flour – 1 tbsp Maida (all purpose flour) – 1 tbsp Baking powder – 1/2 tsp Milk – 2 to 3 tbsp Cardamom – 4 (powdered) Rose essence – 1 tsp Saffron – a few strands Orange food color – a pinch (dissolved in 1 tbsp of water)...

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Moti Pak

Posted by on Nov 1, 2013 in Desserts, Diwali Recipes | 3 comments

Wish you all a Happy Diwali!! Moti Pak is a delicious sweet burfi made with chickpea flour (besan) and sugar. It tastes more like laddu but it has khoya in it which makes it rich and special. You can make this at home which tastes amazing like the ones from sweet shops. Follow the step by step procedure and prepare this wonderful sweet for Diwali. Preparation time: 90 minutes Yield: 16 pieces Ingredients: Besan flour – 2 cups Sugar – 2 cups Milk – 4 tbsp Khoya – 1/4 cup Ghee – 2 tsp Rose essence – 1 tsp Saffron – a pinch Powdered cardamom – 1/2 tsp Nutmeg powder – a pinch (optional) Yellow and red food color Method of Preparation: Sift besan flour to remove any lumps. Mix the yellow and red food color in a tbsp...

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Kasi Halwa – Poosanikkai Halwa

Posted by on Oct 28, 2013 in Desserts, Diwali Recipes, Slideshow | 4 comments

Kasi Halwa is a traditional South Indian dessert made with ash gourd or poosanikkai. This halwa is served in weddings and special occasions. It is one of the most delicious halwa I have eaten and definitely made it to my favorites list. You need very less ghee to make this dish and the ingredients are pretty simple. Only thing is the yield is less compared to the amount of vegetable you use. Try this delicious Halwa for this Diwali and enjoy with your family and friends.   Preparation time: 75 minutes No. of servings: 7 to 8 Ingredients:  White pumpkin or ash gourd – 4 lb (around 2 kg) Sugar – 2 1/2 cups (500 grams) Cardamom – 4 Cashew nut – 2 tbsp Ghee or clarified butter – 3 tbsp Orange food color – a big pinch Method...

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Black Eyed Peas Curry

Posted by on Oct 25, 2013 in Veggie Entrees & Sides | 4 comments

Black Eyed Peas Curry is a delicious curry made with the nutritious black eyes beans cooked in an onion tomato based gravy. I used dried beans and soaked it over night. You can also use low sodium canned beans. Serve this dish with roti or rice. Preparation time: 40 minutes No. of servings: 5 Spice level: 3.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Black eyed peas – 1 cup One big onion Tomatoes – 2 Green chilies – 2 Ginger garlic paste – 1 tbsp Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp Chili powder – 3/4 tsp Coriander powder – 1 1/2 tsp Cumin powder – 1/2 tsp Garam masala – 1/2 tsp Cilantro or Coriander leaves – 1/3 cup Oil – 1 tbsp Salt to taste Method of Preparation: Pressure cook black eyed peas with 2 1/2...

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Vegetable Bonda

Posted by on Oct 21, 2013 in Appetizers, Diwali Recipes, Navratri Recipes, Slideshow, Snacks | 4 comments

Vegetable Bonda is a popular snack made with mixed vegetables which is then dipped in a gram flour (besan) batter and fried in oil. It is more like Aloo Bonda but with a lot of other vegetables in it. You can serve it as an evening snack with a cup of tea or as an appetizer. Serve it with coconut chutney. Preparation time: 75 minutes Yield: 16  Spice level: 2.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Potatoes – 2 or 3 (big) Mixed vegetables – 2 cups (peas, carrots, beetroot, beans, cauliflower) Medium size onion – 1 Green chilies – 3 Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp Finely chopped ginger – 1 tbsp Chili powder – 1/2 tsp Oil – 1 tbsp Chopped coriander leaves (cilantro) – 1/4 cup Salt to taste Oil for frying For Batter: Besan (gram...

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Erissery – Pumpkin Curry with Black Eyed Peas

Posted by on Oct 15, 2013 in Kootu/lentil Stew | 6 comments

Erissery is an authentic dish from Kerala and one of the important dishes prepared for Onam Sadya. You can prepare this dish with pumpkin or chenai (yam) or raw plantain. The cow peas or the red beans added to this dish makes it more nutritious and healthy. Serve this delicious curry with rice or roti. Preparation time: 40 minutes No. of servings: 4 Spice level: 2.5 out of 5 Ingredients:  1″ Cubed Pumpkin – 2 cups Cow peas or Van payar or Red beans – 1/3 cup Curry leaves – one sprig Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp Coconut oil – 1 tsp Turmeric powder – a pinch Salt to taste To Grind: Shredded coconut – 1/4 cup Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp Green chili – 2 Method of Preparation: Grind coconut, cumin and green chilies to a fine paste with...

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Tomato and Mozzarella Panini (Panera Style)

Posted by on Oct 10, 2013 in Sandwiches | 1 comment

Tomato Mozzarella Sandwich is one of my favorite sandwiches in the Panera Bread (a chain of bakery-cafe in the U.S. and Canada). It is also a delicious choice of sandwich for vegetarians. I am obsessed with Panera’s bread loafs specially the Ciabatta and Tomato Basil Bread. We buy it at least once in a month and try their sandwiches at home. This sandwich is a copycat recipe of Panera’s Tomato Mozzarella Panini. I bought the bread from Panera but you can use any thick slices of bread. My other favorite breads for making panini are Italian bread and sour bread. Preparation time: 30 minutes Yield: 4 sandwiches Ingredients: Ciabatta bread – one big loaf (or 4 sandwich bread) Mozzarella cheese – 4 slices Fresh basil leaves – 8 Salt and pepper to taste Olive oil for brushing For Sun-dried...

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Olan Recipe – Winter Melon Coconut Stew

Posted by on Oct 2, 2013 in Kootu/lentil Stew | 1 comment

Olan is a traditional dish from Kerala Cuisine. It is made for special occasions such as Onam, weddings, etc. It is one of the most simplest dish you can make. It has winter melon, red cowpeas, coconut milk which is flavored with green chili, coconut oil and curry leaves. You can serve this dish as a side with rice and sambar/rasam or any variety rice. Preparation time: 30 minutes No. of servings: 3 Spice level: 2 out of 5 Ingredients: Cubed winter melon – 1 cup Cooked red cowpeas (karamani or vanpayar) – 1/4 cup Green chili – 1 or 2 (adjust to taste) Thick coconut milk – 1 cup Salt to taste Coconut oil – 1 tsp Method of Preparation: Peel the skin and chop winter melon into small cubes. Wash and pressure cook cowpeas with 3/4 cup...

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Vendakkai Pachadi – Okra Pachadi

Posted by on Sep 30, 2013 in Veggie Entrees & Sides | 5 comments

Vendakkai Pachadi or Okra Pachadi is a delicious yogurt based side dish. It is very easy to make and one of the few minutes wonders. Pachadi is considered one of the important dish in any traditional feast in South India. You can make pachadi with fresh vegetable such as beetroot, winter melon, cucumber, carrot, etc. Serve this pachadi with rice, dosa, idli or roti. Preparation time: 30 minutes No.of servings: 3 Spice level: 1.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Chopped okra or lady’s finger – 2 cups Shredded coconut – 3 tbsp Green chili – 1 Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp Plain yogurt or curd – 3/4 cup Oil – 1 tsp Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp A few curry leaves Method of Preparation: Wash and let the okra dry. Chop the ends and and cut it into slices. Heat...

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Kootu Curry (Onam Special)

Posted by on Sep 28, 2013 in Kootu/lentil Stew | 5 comments

Kootu Curry is a delicious coconut based curry from Kerala cuisine. I made it for the Onam Sadya feast and it has become one of my favorite dish. It is a simple and fabulous curry made with plantain and chenai (yam). You can serve this dish with rice or roti. Preparation time: 30 minutes No. of servings: 5 to 6 Spice level: 3 out of 5 Ingredients: Black chickpea (kadala) – 1/2 cup Cubed chenai or suran (yam) – 1/2 cup Cubed plantain – 1 cup Cubed Winter melon or Elavan or Pusanikkai – 1/2 cup Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp Red chili powder – 1/4 tsp Salt to taste For Grinding: Grated coconut – 1/2 cup Cumin seeds – 1/4 tsp Green chili – 2 Shallot or small onion – 1 Grated ginger – 1/2 tsp For Seasoning: Oil...

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Posted by on Sep 27, 2013 in Beverages & Drinks, Indian Festival | 5 comments

Panagam or Panakam is a drink made with jaggery and spices. It is one of the best natural drink to beat the heat apart from Neer More (spiced buttermilk). Jaggery is unrefined natural sugar which contains iron and traces of other minerals. It is by far the most natural sweetener and it has the ability to cleanse your body, helps indigestion, relieves fatigue, etc. SInce it is unrefined it may contain some impurities but you can removed them by dissolving it in water and filtering it. Jaggery is used in many Indian sweets considering its health benefits. Panagam is one of the best way to add jaggery to your diet. This drink is generally made as a neivedhyam (offering to God) for any pooja at home and temples. Specially on the occasion of Rama Navami, it is one of...

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Palak Chana – Spinach Chickpea Curry

Posted by on Sep 23, 2013 in North Indian recipes, Veggie Entrees & Sides | 7 comments

Palak Chana or Palak Chole is a delicious Spinach and Chickpea Curry served along with roti or Indian breads. Spinach and chickpea is a wonderful combination for making curries. This curry is delightful, not too spicy and filled with protein and minerals. I have used dried chickpeas which was soaked overnight in water and pressure cooked. You can also use canned chickpeas and boil it a little longer for a soft texture. So enjoy this delicious and healthy curry with roti/ rice/bread. Preparation time: 45 minutes + soaking time No. of servings: 6 to 8 Spice level: 2.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Chickpeas (chana) – 1 cup Finely chopped spinach – 3 cups Onion – 1/2 cup Tomatoes – 3 Ginger garlic paste – 1 tbsp Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp Red chili powder – 3/4 tsp to 1...

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Kalan – Onam Sadya Special

Posted by on Sep 19, 2013 in Kootu/lentil Stew | 3 comments

Kalan or Kaalan is a traditional dish from Kerala, South India. It is a creamy dish made with plantain, yam and coconut spice mixture. Coconut plays an important part in Kerala cuisine. Most of the dishes calls for coconut in some way or the other. I made this dish for the Onam festival and it came out very well. Though the recipe is simple the flavors are amazing. If you carefully follow the steps you will achieve the right taste. You can serve it with rice and papad or any thoran/poriyal. I like to eat it with even rotis. Give this recipe a try and you will love it. Preparation time: 30 minutes No. of servings: 5 Spice level: 2.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Raw plantain (Vazhakkai) – 1 Cubed Yam (Chenai or Suran) – 1 cup Black pepper...

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Neer More – Spiced Buttermilk

Posted by on Sep 17, 2013 in Beverages & Drinks, Onam and Vishu | 3 comments

Neer More, that is what Spiced Buttermilk is called in tamil. It is a refreshing drink and the best drink to beat the summer heat. It is very easy to prepare in a short time. Back in India, during summer time there would be “More Pandhal”, places where “Neer More” is served on the road side under a temporary shed set up by well wishers. It is just to serve people a refreshing drink which gives them a temporary relief from the scorching summer heat. Some people have a big pot full of this beverage outside their houses for the passers by as a token of good will. There is nothing better than serving people around us without expecting anything in return. Have a glass full of buttermilk and get refreshed!! Preparation time: 15 minutes Servings: 4 Ingredients: Yogurt...

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Onam Festival Recipes

Posted by on Sep 15, 2013 in Indian Festival | 5 comments

Wish you all a very Happy Onam!! Onam is one of the most important festivals celebrated by the people from Kerala (located in South India). This festival is celebrated every year for 10 days in the Malayalam month of “Chingam” which falls between August and September. These 10 days are celebrated as a harvest festival and also as a homecoming for King Mahabali, who was banished by Lord Vishnu in Vamana avatar. For more details please refer here. All the 10 days are part of Onam celebrations and each and every day is  celebrated with various traditional rituals starting from making “Pookalam” (rangoli with flowers) on the front yard of houses everyday for the 10 days which marks the beginning of Onam and set the tone for the celebrations. The celebration continues with conducting Vallam Kali – Snake boat races...

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Paruppu Payasam

Posted by on Sep 12, 2013 in Desserts, Diwali Recipes, Indian Festival, Navratri Recipes, Onam and Vishu, Vinayagar Chaturthi | 5 comments

Paruppu Payasam is a delicious Indian dessert made with lentils, coconut milk, milk and jaggery.  It is made during festivals and special occasions. I usually make it just with milk but this time as per my sister’s advice I also added some coconut milk which made this a lot of more richer and delicious. Try to use the thick or the first milk extracted from the coconut. For more details about how to extract coconut milk, read “How to extract coconut milk“. Preparation time: 40 minutes No of servings: 5 Ingredients: Moong Dal – 1/2 cup Chana dal – 2 tbsp Jaggery – 1/4 cup Milk – 3/4 cup Fresh coconut milk – 1 cup Ghee or clarified butter – 1 and 1/2 tsp Cashew nut – 1 tbsp Cardamom – 2 pods A few saffron strands Method of Preparation:...

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Fruit Punch

Posted by on Sep 8, 2013 in Beverages & Drinks | Comments Off on Fruit Punch

This is a non alcoholic Fruit Punch which is easy to make and great for kids or adults parties. Adding soda gives it a sparkle and a refreshing taste. You can also add ginger ale to this punch if you like the taste. I made some strawberry ice cubes to float on top. You can either float the ice cubes on the punch bowl itself or you can serve individual glass of punch with one ice cube on each. If you have different shape molds, use it for making the strawberry ice. Kids will love it. Preparation time: 30 minutes Servings: 20 Ingredients: Frozen lemonade concentrate – 12 oz Frozen orange juice concentrate – 12 oz Frozen pineapple concentrate – 24 oz Sugar – 1 1/2 cups Water – 3 cups Strawberries – 2 cups (preferably frozen) Sprite or...

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Seedless Blackberry Raspberry Jam

Posted by on Sep 3, 2013 in Preserves & Conserves | 2 comments

Raspberry and Blackberry is an amazing combination for making preserves. This jam is sweet and a little sour because of the berries that I have used. You can add more sugar to balance the sour taste. But I like it this way. I have not used any pectin for preparing this jam other than the lemon and orange juice which acts as the natural pectin. I strained  the berries to make a smooth seedless jam. I don’t like the seeds in my jam and blackberry seeds are really big and annoying. But if you don’t mind the seeds then you can avoid the straining step. If you have a lot of berries grown in your garden, this is the perfect way to use them. Make lot of jam and freeze it or can it for the whole year round...

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Aval Vellam – Poha with Jaggery

Posted by on Aug 27, 2013 in Desserts, Snacks | 6 comments

Aval Vellam is a sweet dish made with jaggery and poha. I made this dish for Krishna Jayanthi or Gokulashtami (Lord Krishna’s birthday) since poha is one of his favorite food. It takes only a few minutes to make this dish and you can serve it for evening snacks to kids. Preparation time: 30 minutes No. of servings: 4 Ingredients: Poha or aval (thick or thin) – 3/4 cup Jaggery – 1/2 cup Cashew nut – 1 tbsp Cardamom – 3 pods Shredded coconut – 2 tbsp Method of Preparation: Wash and soak poha in water for 5 minutes or until soft. If using thin poha, just wash and soak for a minute. Strain the poha through a colander. Add jaggery and a little water in a pan and bring it to a boil. When jaggery dissolves, filter the...

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