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

Thavala Adai (Delicious South Indian Snack)

Posted by on Aug 21, 2013 in Breakfast Menu, Snacks | 3 comments

Thavala Adai is a delicious South Indian dish made from rice and lentils. My mom makes lovely  Thavala Adai and this is her recipe. I am not sure how they named this dish but all I care about is its wonderful taste. It will be a nice variation from the regular snacks. My mom makes it for the evening tiffin or sometimes even for dinner. It is crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. It can be served with coconut chutney, tomoto gothsu or eggplant gothsu. Preparation time: 45 minutes + 1 hour for drying rice Yield: 15 Spice level: 2.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Raw rice – 1 cup Toor dal – 1/4 cup Chana dal – 1 tbsp Urad dal – 1 tbsp Black peppercorns – 2 tsp Dried red chili – 1 Cumin seeds...

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Varalakshmi Vratham and Recipes

Posted by on Aug 16, 2013 in Indian Festival | 3 comments

Varalakshmi Nombu Or Varalakshmi Vratham is a sacred ceremony observed by Hindus in the tamil month of Aadi or Sravana (Hindu Calender month) which falls between July and August. Aadi is an auspicious month and a lot of festivals and religious ceremony are observed in this month such as Aadi Perukku, Aadi ammavasai, Aadi Velli, Aadi Pooram, etc. On the day of this Vratham, married women worship Goddess Lakshmi for the well being of their husband and family. Varatham is a Sanskrit word, meaning “Vow”  or “Promise”. It denotes a religious practice or actions which includes fasting, doing pooja, reciting mantras/prayers, etc. I am sharing a detailed procedure of the Varalakshmi Vratham rituals that we follow at home. It may vary with each household. This may be of help to the beginners or anyone who wants to know about...

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Stuffed Mini Peppers

Posted by on Aug 14, 2013 in Appetizers, Slideshow | 2 comments

Stuffed Mini Peppers are perfect party appetizers. They are easy to make and you can prepare them ahead and pop them in the oven just before the party. I got the idea of making this dish from Giada’s foodnetwork show. But I made the filling with an Indian touch. These are crunchy and mild, a little sweet when you bite with a savory touch inside. Their lovely colors attract both kids and adults and well garnish your table. Preparation time: 45 minutes Yield: 16 stuffed peppers Spice level: 2 out of 5 Ingredients: Stuffed mini peppers – 16 Paneer – 1 cup Cream cheese – 1/4 cup Onion – 3/4 cup Green chilies – 2 Garlic pods – 4 Fresh mint leaves – 2 tbsp Fresh cilantro – 1 tbsp Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp Oil – 3 tsp...

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Homemade Brown Sugar

Posted by on Aug 12, 2013 in How to?? | 5 comments

Making brown sugar at home is very easy. It is fresh, moist and cheaper than the store bought ones. It takes only 5 minutes to make this. You just have to whip up some granulated sugar with the molasses and tada!! it is ready. You can control how light or dark you want your sugar to be. Store it in an airtight container to prevent it from hardening. Yield: 1 cup of Brown Sugar Ingredients: For Light Brown Sugar: Granulated sugar – 1 cup Molasses – 1 1/2 tbsp (unsulphured) For Dark Brown Sugar: Granulated sugar – 1 cup Molasses – 3 to 4 tbsp (unsulphured) Method of Preparation: Add a cup of sugar in the food processor along with molasses. Pulse for a few times and then process until you get a fluffy and soft brown sugar. Alternatively, mix...

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Chocolate Oatmeal Larabars

Posted by on Aug 8, 2013 in Fudges and Bars | Comments Off on Chocolate Oatmeal Larabars

Larabars are energy bars made with a blend of delicious fruits, nuts and spices. I came to know about these Larabars from pinterest. There were lot of interesting recipes for making different types of Larabars. Today I have made Chocolate Oatmeal Larabars with the ingredients that I had at home. Actually I added in a lot of other ingredients too but wanted to keep the title short. It is very easy to make these energy bars and you can save some money by making it at home. You can carry them to your trekking, biking or picnic with your friends and family. Or you can also munch on this healthy treat after your lunch. Kids will love it. Ingredients: Pitted dates – 1 cup Rolled oats – 3/4 cup Unsweetened cocoa powder – 2 tbsp Walnuts – 1/4 cup...

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Puliyodharai/Pulihora – Version 2

Posted by on Aug 5, 2013 in Rice dishes | 3 comments

Puliyodharai or Pulihora is a traditional South Indian dish made with rice and spicy tamarind mix. The spicy tamarind mix is called “Pulikaichal” or “Puliyodharai mix”. It is one of the popular prasadham recipes offered in Hindu temples. There are various methods for preparing this dish but the ingredients pretty much remains the same. My mom makes delicious Puliyodharai which tastes similar to the temple prasadham. This is her recipe and here I am sharing it with you. Preparation time: 60 minutes No. of servings: 5 Spice level: 3.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Raw rice – 1 and 1/2 cups (sona masoori or ponni rice) Tamarind – 2 lemon size Peanuts or Chickpea – 3 or 4 tbsp Dried red chilies – 8 Chana dal – 1 tbsp Urad dal – 1 tsp A few curry leaves Turmeric powder...

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Kara Pori – Spicy Murmura

Posted by on Aug 1, 2013 in Snacks | 1 comment

Pori or Murmura is Puffed Rice which is airy and light. We make a lot of dishes with this puffed rice such as Pori Urundai, Bhelpuri, Jhal Muri, etc. Today I have made a simple snack called “Kara Pori”, meaning “Spicy Puffed Rice”. You can make this simple snack for a movie night which will definitely leave your guests reaching for more. My friend Meena was talking about this dish and the flavorful roasted garlic which adds beauty to this dish. She made it for me today and what more can you ask for to enjoy it with a cup of hot tea.  Preparation time: 15 minutes No. of servings: 2 to 4 Spice level: 3.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Puffed rice or pori or murmura – 2 cups Peanuts – 4 tbsp Roasted chickpea (pottukadalai) – 2 tbsp...

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Vada Pav

Posted by on Jul 25, 2013 in Chaat, Slideshow, Snacks | 4 comments

Vada Pav is a popular Indian burger and one of the most favorite street foods in Maharashtra, particularly in Mumbai. It is priced fairly cheap which makes it a go to snack for everyone. Spicy potato balls known as “Vada” are deep fried in oil and served with toasted buns also known as “Pav” smeared with red garlic and green chutney. It has a perfect balance of spicy, tangy, crispy flavors which makes you enjoy each and every bite. Though it is a guilty pleasure, it’s okay to indulge in your favorite snack once in a while. I enjoy my Vada Pav with a little bit of garlic chutney and lots of green chutney. This will make a perfect snack for parties, picnics, game night, etc. For parties, you can make the potato vadas ahead and heat it in oven...

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Chocolate Banana Bread

Posted by on Jul 21, 2013 in Breads | 2 comments

Chocolate Banana Bread is a nice variation from the regular Banana Bread. Chocolate with banana is a wonderful combination for making a moist bread. I have added some walnuts and chocolate chips in this bread. You can skip them if you like it plain. If you have overly ripe bananas at home then it is perfect for this bread. It is also a perfect gift to give your friends and family. Refrigerate this bread for a longer shelf life. Preparation time: 75 minutes Yield: 1 loaf  Ingredients: All purpose flour – 1 cup Wheat flour – 1 cup Unsweetened cocoa – 1/2 cup Sugar – 1 1/2 cups Baking powder – 1tsp Baking soda – 1/2 tsp Salt – 1/4 tsp Eggs – 2 Butter – 2 sticks (at room temperature) Yogurt – 1/4 cup Oil – 1/4 cup...

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Easy Kulfi IceCream

Posted by on Jul 18, 2013 in Desserts, Ice Cream | 5 comments

Kulfi is a delicious frozen Indian dessert made from dairy products. It is a perfect summer treat for both kids and adults. This recipe for making Kulfi takes only a few minutes to prepare and is perfect for party treats and quick dessert ideas. All you have to do is blend the ingredients and freeze it. You can use aluminum or plastic molds for making Kulfis. I bought mine from IKEA. If  you do not have Kulfi mold, you can either pour the contents into a big box or tray, cover it with a tight lid or aluminum foil and freeze it overnight. Scoop and serve. Preparation time: 20 minutes Freezing time: 6 to 8 hours Yield: 50 small Kulfis Ingredients: Evaporated milk – one 12 oz can Condensed milk – one 14 oz can Heavy whipping cream –...

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Cabbage Masala Curry

Posted by on Jun 29, 2013 in North Indian recipes | 2 comments

Cabbage Masala Curry is a simple and delicious curry served with roti or naan. I learnt this dish from my father in law who is a great cook and appreciates good food. This is one of his signature dish and my favorite. You can add peas to this dish if you like. It is not spicy and perfect for kids and adults. Enjoy this dish with roti or rice. Preparation time: 60 minutes No. of servings: 4 Spice level: 2 out of 5 Ingredients: Cabbage – 3/4 kg  (1.6 lb) Chopped onion – 1 Tomato – 1 Green chili – 1 Garlic pods – 3 Ginger – 1″ piece Fresh cilantro – 2 tbsp Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp Red chili powder – 1/2 tsp Cumin powder – 1 tsp Coriander powder – 1 tsp Kasoori methi – 1...

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Lemon Pickle

Posted by on Jun 20, 2013 in Pickle | 7 comments

Homemade Pickles are the best. I always prefer them because they are fresh with less sodium and other preservatives. Lemon pickle is one of the easiest pickle to make at home. If you have a bag of lemons lying around in your pantry you can pickle them and store it in the refrigerator or gift it to your friends. It saves you a lot of money as well. Here is a simple recipe for making tasty lemon pickles. You can serve them with rice or roti. I love to pair them with curd or yogurt rice. It is perfect for this hot weather. Ingredients: Big lemons – 5 Salt – 3 tsp Dried red chilies – 4 Fenugreek seeds (methi) – 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp A small piece of asafoetida Sesame oil – 2/3 cup Method...

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Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

Posted by on Jun 12, 2013 in Cookies and Cakes | Comments Off on Best Chocolate Chip Cookies

This is one of the best  (or the best) Chocolate Chip Cookie I have ever had. No wonder it was featured in the New York Times. I came across this recipe in pinterest and decided to give it a try. I am glad I did and these are hands down the best CCC ever. It is loaded with chocolate. The bread flour and the cake flour does the magic. Try these delicious cookies and share with your friends and family. Preparation time: 40 minutes Yield: 18 cookies Ingredients: Cake flour – 2 cups minus 2 tablespoon (8 1/2 ounces) Bread flour – 1 2/3 cups (8 1/2 ounces) Baking soda – 1.25 tsp Baking powder – 1.5 tsp Salt – 1.5 tsp Unsalted butter – 2.5 sticks (1.25 cups) Light brown sugar – 1.25 cups Granulated sugar (white sugar)...

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Aloo Poha (Batata Poha)

Posted by on Jun 8, 2013 in Breakfast Menu, Snacks | 4 comments

Aloo Poha or Batata Poha is a traditional Maharashtrian recipe made using flattened rice or Poha (aval) and potatoes. A simple and delicious recipe served for dinner or a healthy breakfast. It can also be made during Navaratri festival for serving your guests. You can use thin or thick poha for making this dish except that the soaking time varies. Preparation time: 30 minutes No. of servings: 4 Spice level: 3 out of 5 Ingredients: Poha (flattened rice or beaten rice) –  2 cups Big potato – 1 (boiled, peeled and cubed) Chopped onion – 1 cup Green chilies – 3 to 4 A few curry leaves Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds – 1 tsp Urad dal – 1 tsp Peanuts – 3 tbsp Dried red chili – 1 Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp Oil – 3...

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Avial – Mixed Vegetable Stew

Posted by on Jun 5, 2013 in Onam and Vishu, Veggie Entrees & Sides | 4 comments

Avial is a delicious South Indian stew made by cooking vegetables in a coconut gravy. Avial is made during special occasions and festivals such as Onam. Avial and adai (Rice & Grain Pancake) is a famous combination served for breakfast or dinner. Avial is also served with rice. Preparation time: 30 minutes No. of servings: 4 Spice level: 2 out of 5 Ingredients: Vegetables – 2 cups (potato, carrot, beans, winter melon, pumpkin) Grated coconut – 1/2 cup Green chilies – 2 Cumin seeds – 1 tsp Oil – 1 tsp A few curry leaves (8 to 10) Yogurt – 1 cup Coconut oil – 3 to 4 drops Method of Preparation: Cut vegetables into 1″ pieces. Boil vegetables in a sauce pan or kadai with 1/2 cup of water and salt until vegetables become tender. Grind coconut, cumin...

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Vegetable Bread Sandwich – Iyengar Bakery Style

Posted by on Jun 2, 2013 in Sandwiches, Slideshow | 7 comments

Most of you from Tamilnadu would have heard about Iyengar Bakery and their popular Vegetable Bread Sandwich. It is one of my favorite among the other dishes from the bakery. It is simple and very tasty. My father in law is an expert in making this sandwich and we all love it. He is here with us and now I get to eat it for breakfast on almost everyday. I can’t wait to share this simple sandwich recipe with you. Keep the vegetables chopped the night before and make it for a quick breakfast or even for lunch pack. It tastes great even after so many hours of making. All you need to do is wrap it in an aluminum foil and it will stay fresh until evening. It even tastes better. I am not exaggerating!!! It is healthy,...

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Lemon Sevai and Sweet Sevai

Posted by on May 30, 2013 in Breakfast Menu | 2 comments

Sevai is rice noodles made from parboiled rice. It looks more like Idiyappam but a thicker version. Also idiyappam is made from raw rice flour and it is very thin. This is pretty much the difference. Sevai maker or Sevai Nazhi is used for making this dish. Even murukku achu can be used for making this dish. You can make different varieties of Sevai from the basic recipe. Now I have shared the recipe for Lemon and Sweet Sevai which are my favorites. Sevai is a healthy dish and kids will definitely love it. You can serve this dish for breakfast or dinner or even pack for a healthy lunch. Preparation time: 6 hours Cooking time: 40 minutes Serving size – 3 to 4 Ingredients: Parboiled rice – 1 cup Raw rice – 2 tbsp Oil – 2 tsp...

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Restaurant Style Fried Rice

Posted by on May 26, 2013 in Indo-Chinese, Rice dishes, Slideshow | 3 comments

This is a simple recipe for making restaurant style Indo-Chinese Fried Rice. You can serve this dish with Gobi Manchurian or Veggie Manchurian or just ketchup. It is cooked with less ingredients and simple steps but the taste is unbelievable. Ginger, garlic and soy sauce plays the vital role in this recipe. Another important thing is rice. If the rice is hot, it will certainly break when you fry it in the hot wok or pan. So make sure you cool the rice before cooking. It is even better to cook well in advance to making the fried rice. You can add a pinch of MSG (ajinomoto) which is optional. I try to avoid it most of the times. Enjoy the homemade fried rice!! Preparation time: 40 minutes  Cooking time: 20 minutes No. of servings: 6 Spice level: 3 out...

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Elavan Mathan Pachadi – Pumpkin and Melon Curry

Posted by on May 23, 2013 in Kootu/lentil Stew, Onam and Vishu, Veggie Entrees & Sides | 4 comments

Elavan Mathan Pachadi is again a simple and traditional Palakad dish which is generally served with rice and Milagootal. Winter Melon (ash gourd) and Pumpkin are known as “Elavan or Kumbalanga” and “Mathan or Mathanga” respectively in Malayalam. This pachadi can also be served with any type of rice or roti. Both pumpkin and ash gourd are nutritious vegetables. So this is a perfect way to add these vegetables to your daily diet. Preparation time: 30 minutes No. of servings: 6 Spice level: 3 out of 6 Ingredients: Elavan (winter melon) – 1 cup Mathan or parangikkai – 1 cup Whole tamarind – small lemon size Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp Shredded coconut – 1/4 cup Mustard seeds – 1 tsp Green chilies – 1 Oil – 1 tsp Dried chili – 1 A few curry leaves Salt to...

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Keerai Milagootal

Posted by on May 22, 2013 in Kootu/lentil Stew | 4 comments

Keerai Milagootal is a Palakad dish made from greens and toor dal. You can use spinach, amaranth leaves or otheYou can serve this with rice or roti.  It is easy to make and a healthy dish with lots of protein and other nutrients. My mother in law is here and I am learning a lot of Palakad (Kerala) dishes from her. I really like the simple and flavorful dishes that she cooks. Keep posted for more traditional and tasty dishes… Preparation time: 30 minutes No. of servings: 4 Spice level: 2.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Spinach – 250 gram Urad dal – 1 tsp Dried red chilies – 2 Cumin seeds – 1 tsp Shredded coconut – 3 tbsp Toor dal – 1/2 cup Oil – 2 tsp Mustard seeds and urad dal – 1 tsp each Method of...

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