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

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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Aadi Perukku / Aadi 18 Recipes

Posted by on Aug 2, 2013 in Indian Festival, Rice dishes | 3 comments

Aadi Perukku / Aadi 18 is a Tamil festival celebrated on the 18th day of the Tamil month Aadi (July mid to Aug mid). Usually it comes on Aug 2nd or Aug 3rd of every year. The Adiperukku, as a water-ritual, celebrated by women is to honor nature. It is celebrated near river basins, when the level of water rises because of Monsoon. On this day, we will prepare different rice varieties and worship Goddess Parvati. I am happy to share our Aadi 18 special recipes. Kalkandu Chakkarai Pongal Sarkarai Pongal / Sweet Pongal Thengai Sadam / Coconut Rice Elumichai Sadam / Lime Rice Puli Sadam / Tamarind Rice Thakkali Sadam / Tomato Rice Thayir Sadam / Curd Rice Medu...

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Rava Kesari with Jaggery

Posted by on Jul 20, 2013 in Desserts, Indian Festival, Onam and Vishu | 1 comment

Usually we make Kesari with sugar. In this recipe there is a twist…Yeah I am adding Jaggery instead of sugar. I got this recipe from my cousin and people who like sweets using Jaggery will love this recipe. Time of Preparation : 20 minutes No of Servings : 1 or 2 Ingredients: Rava / Sooji coarse – 1/4 cup Jaggery – 1/2 cup (crushed) Milk – 1/4 cup (I have used skimmed milk) Water – 1/4 cup for jaggery + 1/2 cup Ghee – 2 tbsp Cardamom – 1 (crushed) Cashews – few Rasins – few Method of Preparation: Heat 1 tbsp of ghee in a vessel and fry the rava in low flame until it starts to change the color. Add jaggery and cardamom to 1/4 cup of water and let it boil. When it completely dissolves,  strain...

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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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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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Puli Inji – Tangy Ginger Curry

Posted by on May 16, 2013 in Onam and Vishu, Pickle | 5 comments

Puli Inji is a tangy and spicy dish with ginger and tamarind paste as the main ingredients. It is a perfect condiment with curd rice or any other rice. Easy to make and you can store it in the refrigerator for upto a month. It is more like pickle but tastes like Vathakuzhambu. My mother in law is here and I learnt this recipe from her. She makes authentic Palakad dishes which are simple and delicious. I am looking forward to share more recipes from her. So keep posted!! Ingredients: Chopped ginger – 4 tbsp Green chilies – 2 Whole tamarind – one lemon size Fenugreek seeds – 1/4 tsp Mustard seeds – 1/4 tsp Sesame oil – 2 tbsp Curry leaves 1″ piece of jaggery A pinch of turmeric powder A pinch of asafoetida Salt to taste Method of...

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Mambazha Pulissery – Ripe Mango in a Yogurt Curry

Posted by on May 4, 2013 in Kootu/lentil Stew, Onam and Vishu, Veggie Entrees & Sides | 10 comments

Mambazha Pulissery is an authentic Kerala style curry in which ripe mangoes are cooked in a yogurt and coconut based spicy curry. It is sweet, sour, spicy and a little tangy. It is a tradition to make this dish on Vishu and Onam festival. It tastes more like Mor Kootan or Mor Kuzhambu except for being a little sweet. Mango season is here, so try this delicious curry and serve as a side to chapathis, rice and also as raitha to pulao or biryani. Ingredients: Ripe mango – 1 Grated coconut – 3 tbsp Dried red chilies – 2 Fenugreek seeds (methi) – 1/2 tsp Thick buttermilk – 1.5 cups Oil – 2 tsp Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp A few curry leaves Salt to taste Method of Preparation: Peel the skin and cut mango into big pieces. Boil it...

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Kathirikkai Avarakkai Murungakkai Sambar – Mixed Vegetable Sambar

Posted by on Feb 21, 2013 in Kootu/lentil Stew, Onam and Vishu, Veggie Entrees & Sides | 4 comments

Kathirikkai, avarakkai and murungakkai (brinjal, broad beans, drumstick) is one of the popular combination for making sambar. I made this sambar using freshly ground sambar powder which makes it more tastier. It is a perfect combination with rice as well as idi/dosa. For those who doesn’t know about sambar: Sambar is a staple food in the Southern parts of India. Vegetables are cooked with lentils and spices and served with boiled rice or idli/dosa. Preparation time: 20 minutes Cooking time: 30 minutes Spice level: 3.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Broad beans (avarakkai) – 1 cup Brinjal (kathirikkai) – 4 2″ long drumstick (murungakkai) pieces – 7 or 8 Toor dal – 2/3 cup (133 gram) Tamarind juice – 1 cup (from a small lime sized tamarind ball) Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp Roast and grind: Oil – 3/4 tsp...

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Oats Pongal

Posted by on Jan 15, 2013 in Healthy Eats, Indian Festival, Slideshow, Veggie Entrees & Sides | 1 comment

Oats Pongal is a healthy South Indian breakfast dish. This is a wonderful way to incorporate oats in your daily diet. It is nutritious and very easy to prepare apart from the fact that it tastes very close to the original Ven Pongal. This fiber and protein rich breakfast dish can be served with sambar/chutney. You can use gluten free oats if you are on a gluten free diet. If you want to avoid dairy, substitute ghee with oil. Try this wonderful dish at your home and enjoy a healthy and hearty meal… Cooking time: 30 minutes No. of servings: 4 Spice level: 2.5 out of 5 Ingredients: Rolled oats – 1 cup Split moong dal – 1/2 cup Ghee or clarified butter – 2 tbsp Choped ginger – 1 tbsp Cumin seeds – 3/4 tbsp Crushed black pepper...

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How to Make Jalebi?

Posted by on Dec 7, 2012 in Desserts, Diwali Recipes, Indian Festival | 17 comments

Jalebi is one of the most popular Indian desserts. They are just like funnel cakes but soaked in a sugary syrup. Jalebi is an easy to make yet very tasty sweet that will satisfy anyone with a sweet tooth. If you go sweet shopping in India, you will find this in every sweet shop. It’s that popular. Jalebi is a thinner and easier version of another sweet – Jhangri. This is yet another recipe I was hoping to post for Diwali but I guess this can also be made for Christmas! Preparation Time: 60 minutes No Of servings : 9-10 No Of Jalebi’s : 30-40 Ingredients: Maida/all purpose flour : 1 cup Besan Flour : 1 tsp Warm water : 3/4 cup Oil : 1 tsp Rapid rise yeast : 1 tsp Cardamom Powder : 1 tsp Yogurt :...

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Chettinad Mutton Kuzhambhu

Posted by on Dec 5, 2012 in Chettinad Dishes, Diwali Recipes, Meat & Seafood Entrees, Mutton Dishes | 5 comments

I’ve made this dish a day before Diwali and since then I wanted to post it, but couldn’t find time to do it. Finally I am posting this recipe today. This mutton curry is one of the most easiest and flavorful dish I’ve ever made. It’s an authentic chettinad recipe I’ve got from one of my friend. Chettinad dishes are most popular in southern part of India. You can find chettinad dishes on any restaurant in South India. The ground masala is key to this dish and makes it more delicious and it gives nice aroma. Try this recipe and let me know how it turned out for you. Preparation Time : 45 minutes No of servings : 4-5 Spice level : 3 out of 5 Ingredients: Mutton : 500 gms Onion: 1 cup Tomato : 1 cup(chopped finely)...

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Vazhakkai Chips – Plantain Chips

Posted by on Nov 30, 2012 in Onam and Vishu, Snacks | 2 comments

Vazhakkai or Plantain Chips is an easy to make snack and my mom makes it often for most of the occasions. She is not a huge fan of store bought snacks or food and I have watched her make all different kind of chips and other snacks. Plantain Chips can be served with rice and sambar/rasam/yogurt or as a snack. They are savory and more like potato chips. Try this easy to follow recipe and enjoy your homemade chips. Ingredients: Raw plantain (vazhakkai) – 2 Chili powder – 3/4 tsp Salt – 1/2 tsp (adjust to taste) Curry leaves – 5 to 6 leaves Oil for frying Method of Preparation: Heat oil in a pan or kadai. I used canola oil. Any cooking oil would work. Cut the ends and peel the skin off plantain, cut into halves and...

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Pori Urundai for Karthikai Deepam

Posted by on Nov 27, 2012 in Cooking Videos, Desserts, Diwali Recipes, Indian Festival, Slideshow | 1 comment

Happy Karthikai Deepam to all our readers… Karthikai Deepam is a festival observed in India in the month of Karthikai (tamil month). Temples, houses and streets are lit with rows of oil lamps or agal vilakku and  the sky is lit with fireworks. This festival is grandly celebrated in Thiruvannamalai, located in Tamilnadu. It is celebrated for 10 days and on the 10th day Mahadeepam (a huge lamp) is lit on top of the Annamalai hill which is said to be visible around a radius of 40 km. This is perhaps the oldest festival in the history of Tamilnadu. On this day, we make Pori Urundai or Puffed Rice Balls, appam, Neyyappam and share it with our family and friends. A grand feast is also prepared on this day which includes rice, sambar, rasam, kootu, kurry, vada, payasam, appalam,...

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How to make Gulab Jamun with Khoya?

Posted by on Nov 16, 2012 in Desserts, Diwali Recipes | 3 comments

Now a days making Gulab Jamuns with ready mix has become common. But we can find a huge difference in taste if we make them from the scratch. My grand mother and my aunt still make these for me if I ask for Jamuns. I got this recipe from my aunt and here goes the step by step procedure for making these delicious Khoya Jamuns. Time of Preparation : 50 minutes No of pieces : 30 Ingredients: Khoya – 1 cup (homemade or store bought) Maida / All Purpose Flour) – 1/2 cup Baking Soda – a pinch Milk – few tbsp Oil – For Frying Ghee 3 tbsp For Sugar Syrup: Sugar – 1 1/2 cup Water – 1 1/2 cup Cardamom – 4 to 5 (crushed) Method of Preparation: Sieve the maida and baking soda and mix...

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How to make Khoya?

Posted by on Nov 14, 2012 in Desserts, Diwali Recipes | 1 comment

Khoya / Khoa / Mawa is nothing but reduced dry milk. It is the key ingredient for the Gulab Jamun which makes the Gulab Jamun very rich. Believe me.. we can find a lot of difference between the ready mix Gulab Jamun and the traditional one. We have to put a little effort for preparing this Khoya but it is worth making like this. Here is the step by step method of making Khoya. In my next recipe, I will make traditional Gulab Jamuns using homemade Khoya. Time of Preparation : 1 hour 20 minutes Yield : 1 cup Ingredients: Whole fat milk – 1.5 liters Method of Preparation: Boil the milk in medium flame in a non stick pan. For first few minutes we can boil it in high but we should keep stirring continuously. When the milk...

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Posted by on Nov 13, 2012 in Desserts, Diwali Recipes | 2 comments

Wish you all a Happy and Safe Diwali!!! Badusha or Balushahi is a popular sweet dish in India. It is known as Badusha in the south and Balushahi in the north India. All purpose flour or maida is the main ingredient. Badusha is deep fried in oil and dipped in sugar syrup and served. It is easy to make this dish but perfection comes with practice. Sugar syrup and kneading the dough is the key for making this dish. Enjoy your Diwali with this tasty dish. Ingredients: All purpose flour or maida – 2 cups Baking soda – 1/2 tsp Butter or oil – 3 tbsp Yogurt (curd) – 2 tbsp Sugar – 3/4 cup Cardamom pods – 2 Grated nutmeg (jadikkai) – 1/4 tsp Oil for frying Water Method of Preparation: Sift or mix all purpose flour and...

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Sweet Somas

Posted by on Nov 12, 2012 in Appetizers, Diwali Recipes, Indian Festival | 1 comment

If you want to get into the Diwali celebration mood there is one sweet that will get you there right away- Sweet Somas. This is one of the most favorite Diwali snack my mom used to make when I was growing up. And I still hold it dear to my heart. If you like coconut and fried snacks this is just the ultimate combination of the two. It is basically a deep fried shell with sweetened coconut and sooji filling that tastes heavenly. Wishing everyone a Happy and safe Diwali!!! Preparation Time: 60 minutes No Of Somas: 18-20 Ingredients: Maida(All Purpose Flour) : 2 cups Oil : 1 tbsp Salt : a pinch Water : To knead the dough For Filling: Rawa : 1 cup(Lightly roasted in ghee) Sugar : 1 cup ( Cardamom Powder : 2 tsp Shredded...

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Badam Pista Roll / Almond Pistachio Roll

Posted by on Nov 12, 2012 in Desserts, Diwali Recipes | 3 comments

These Almond Pistachio Rolls are my husband’s favorite. They are very simple to prepare and making the sugar syrup to the proper consistency is the key. Time of Preparation : 2 hours + 20 minutes No of pieces : around 30 Ingredients: Almonds – 1 cup Sugar – 3/4 cup Water a few tbsp Cardamom powder – a pinch Ghee – 3 tbsp For Inner Layer: Pistachios – 1/2 cup Sugar – 1/4 cup Method of Preparation: Soak the almonds and pistachios overnight or in hot water for 2 hours. Remove the skin from the both. Dry them by spreading them in a cloth. If you feel still they are wet, dry roast them in medium flame for 5 minutes. Grind the almonds to powder and grind the pistachios along with 1/4 cup of sugar. Take a nonstick vessel...

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