Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Saarina powder /rasam powder

Ingredients,

1 cup Red chillies [byadagi chilly preferred]
11/2 tbsp cumin seeds
1tsp methi seeds/fenugreek seeds
5-6 tbsp coriander seeds
2 branches of curry leaves
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
1/2 tsp asefotida/hing powder
2 tbsp coconut oil

Method:

Fry each ingredients separately in a pan or microwave [no oil if doing in microwave].until it gives nice aroma.let it cool
After it is cooled blend it in a mixer/blender to a very fine powder.Mix well and you can store this in a Airtight container.

Rasam {Bele saaru}

Bele Saaru is a simple lentil soup which is tangy and just nice to drink as such or even eat with plain rice.

is very famous for its temples.Udupi food is very popular in many parts of the world. The temples here serve one of the tastiest meals. Bele Saaru and Plain Rice is a comfort food for us.This is one item which is liked by my Dh and Ds.Here goes the recipe.


Ingredients


Togari Bele/Split Pigeon Peas/Toor Dal-1 fistful
Tomato - 1
Turmeric - 1big pinch
Curry Leaves - 1 line
Coriander Leaves - 2tbsp (chopped)
Saarina pudi/Rasam Pudi - 1bsp [ Saarina pudi ]
Tamarind paste 1tbsp
Salt and a little jaggery to adjust flavor


Tampering :
1tsp Ghee/Oil, 1/2 tsp Mustard, 1red chilli broken into pieces, Asafoetida/hing one big pinch


Method:
Cook daal with turmeric in a pressure cooker.
Take out the juice of tamarind (or dilute tamarind extract) in 1 cup water and keep it aside. Add jaggery, green chilies(if using),chopped tomatoes and cook till jaggery melts,and the tomatoes become tender.
Add daal and boil for minutes,then add saarina pudi  , salt, chopped coriander, curry leaves and cook for another 3-4 mins.
Heat oil/ghee and add mustard seeds. When they start popping, add asafoetida, red chilies cut into 2-3 pieces. Add this seasoning to the daal and mix well. Serve hot with rice.

Serves : 2
Preparation time : 20mins

Mushroom munchurian

from long time i was thinking of completing the writing for this but couldnt do it,here it is i hope you guys enjoy it.

Mushroom Manchurian, dry (To serve 4)

Button mushrooms,15-20 (I used a 200gm packet)

For the batter:

3/4 cup maida
1/4 cup cornflour
A green chilly, crushed or 2 tsps of green chilly sauce or 1/2 tsp red chilly powder
2 shallots/small onions-crushed
A tsp of minced garlic
Salt, to taste
Water, to make a thick batter

Oil- to deep fry

Final Mix up:

2 tbsp- Oil
A tbsp of ginger + garlic, julienned (or paste)
A green bell pepper- cut into 1/2 inch squares
A big onion - cut into 1/2 inch squares
2 tbsp- dark soy sauce (I used Ching's secret)
1 tbsp- green chilly sauce ( I used Weikfields)
1/2 tsp red chilly powder or 2 red chillies broken into 3 pcs each
1/4 tsp white pepper powder
Salt- to taste (be careful, the sauces contain salt)
Scallions- to garnish


Method:

1. Wash and slice the mushrooms thin and long.

2. Prepare the batter with the ingredients listed, thick, which resembles dosa/idly batter, in a wide vessel.

3. Dump the sliced mushrooms into the batter and mix well. Drop small bite sized pieces into hot oil and deep fry until browned, as batches. Keep aside.


4. Now for the mixing up part; in a broad and wide wok, heat 2 tbsp oil and sauté the sliced ginger-garlic,(broken red chillies if you substitute red chilly powder), onion and capsicum in that order and sauté for a couple of minute. The onions and bell pepper should retain its crispiness and do not let them turn brown.They need to be just translucent.

5. Now add the red chilly powder(if you omit red chilly bits), soy and chilly sauces along with white pepper powder in high flame and mix continuously for a few seconds.

I took off the dish from the stove at this stage after adding the fried mushrooms and mixing it up well together allowing the sauces and spices to seep in and did not add any water as I needed the dry version. I served hot garnished with scallions (spring onion greens).

If you prefer a semi dry version;

6. Add ½ cup of water at the end of stage 5 above along with the fried and cooled mushroom chunks.

7. Sauté again for 3-4 minutes to absorb excess water of any and switch off fire when it is semi dry/ saucy consistency has reached. Let the pieces be 'a li'l crisp' and not soggy at this stage.Garnish with scallions and serve hot with Indochinese fried rice or noodles.

If you like the gravy version of the same, add some more water, say 1/2 - 3/4 cup more and make it thick by adding a tspful cornflour while you bring it to boil. Simmer for a few minutes and serve hot. Again, see to it that you add a little extra amounts of the sauces and spices as the water dilutes the final taste of the gravy version.

Rasgulla from scratch

A year long graving to make rasgulla from scratch came true at last. I had made this in India but was reluctant to make it here so long.

Ingredients:
For chenna/paneer
6 cups milk (I used whole milk)
1-2 tbl spns lemon juice

For syrup:
1 cup sugar
2 and 1/2 cups water
1/4 tea spn cardamom powder

Method:
Heat milk in a heavy bottomed pan. When it is hot, add the lemon juice. Mix with a spoon and cook for a few minutes till the milk separates.
Sieve it through a clean cloth.
Tie the towel in a pouch and squeeze it to remove any extra water.
Hang the towel for about 30mins allowing all the water to fall down. Now the paneer/chenna is ready.
Take it on a plate and knead it very well to remove any chunks. This is very important to get good quality rasgullas. Now make small balls (of peda size), remember, when they are cooked, they increase in volume, so don’t make them too big. It is quite difficult to make these as they break very easily. So apply a bit of pressure to hold them together. Try to give them as smooth surface as possible.

In a big vessel, heat sugar and water. When the sugar is dissolved and syrup comes to boil, slowly add the balls. Remember they increase in size by 2-3 times. So make sure to use big enough vessel to hold them easily.
Now, bring down the heat to medium and close the lid (I made up this step. I didn’t want to cook them in cooker as mentioned in some of the links I saw, I felt by this way, I could take them off heat once they are cooked). Let it cook for about 25mins or until they are cooked. They are cooked when they have considerably increased in size. Take one rasgulla out and slightly apply pressure, if it comes back to original shape, it is cooked.
Add the cardamom powder and take off the heat. Serve them chilled.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Tiramisu for two

I wanted to try this tiramisu dessert without alcohol and egg so i did some reasearch and i got this recipe in which i gave my own changes to the original .
This is banana tiramisu

Ingredients
3/4 cup ricotta cheese ( you can take fat free cheese)
2 tbsp confectioner sugar
1 cup banana( you could use fresh or frozen straw berries )
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup choclate sause
1 and 1/2 tbsp sugar
3/4 cup cool whip cream
1 cup vanilla Wafer biscuits
1/2 tsp cocoa powder
2 tbsp coffee liquor

Method

In a large bowl add ricotta cheese,sugar and vanilla extract Wisk it until smooth bu hand or hand mixer
In another bowl wisk whip cream and sugar keep aside
Chop the banana's into small piece to decorate the tiramisu take some wine glass or you can take in decorative glass in the bottom layer crumble the biscuits Add some coffee liquor then on top add 1 tbsp of ricotta cheese mixture,then add banana to next layer ,add whip cream on top of this repeat this layering .Top this with one spoon of whip cream And sprinkle cocoa powder and refrigerate till it sets or till you serve the desert.

Enjoy Tiramisu ..

Vegetarain Lasagna

Today i hosted Playdate at my place after a long gap ,i was thinking what would be the menu for lunch as we meet at around 12 in the afternoon .We usually have playdate every week at and everyone gets their turn.So as i decided on making vegetarian lasagne for grown up and peene in white sause for kids(this recipe i will post next).
Here goes the recipe for lasgne.

Ingredients

1 box of lasagne sheets( i bought whole wheat sheets)
3 cherry tomato ( you can use canned tomatoes)
1 cup of mixed vegetables
1/2 cup of chopped onion
1/2 cup of spinach
1/3 cup of milk ( cream )
1 tbsp of Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
Salt to taste
1 tbsp oil
3 green chillies
1 inch ginger
1 cup mozzerela cheese
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup parmessan cheese


White sause

1/2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp corn flour
2 cups milk

Method

First cook all the vegetable in a pressure cooker for 1 whistle ( you could steam it too)
Then in a wok add Oil after it gets hot add the vegetables and saute for a minute add turmericpwder,red chilli powder ,italian seasoning and salt saute this for a minute add spinach and milk cover this mixture cook till it in slow flame for a while at last add chopped tomatoes .

For tomato sause
In the boiling water add the tomatoes ,green chillies And ginger cook it till the tomatoes are tender ,after it cools blend this in a mixture to get fine paste after which take this in a pan and.add salt ,italian seasoning and keep aside.

Preparing pasta sheets
In a big vessel boil the water with apinch of salt ,add the pasta sheets and cook till it is soft ,drain the water and keep aside.( i took half box sheets )

Preparing white sause
In a pan add the butter and melt it ( dont wait till it turns brown) add the corn flour dont fry till it changes colour,add milk to this and keep on stiring till the mixture becomes thick.

Preparing lasagne

Preheat the oven to 350 degree mean time in a plater or it can be any glass ware ( but the saquare one)in the bottom layer put the tomato sause on top of it place the lasagne sheets then add the vegetable mixture on top of it put the white sause ,ricotta cheese ,mozerella cheese

Enjoy the vegetarian lasagne..

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Encampment

This Summer has been filled with fun and excitment for my son and us too.One was Camping, we have never been out for camping so this was something new for us and we enjoyed three days of outing in open air We sat around the campfire on chilli nights ,in the pale moonlight,then we added some more logs to make the fire bright,And when the fire flickered and embers began to form.we snuggled in our tents all cozy ,tired and warm.
Next day woke up and kids were excited to play in pool and water slides so we had finish our daily routine of carrying toilet papers and getting fresh ,those three days of camping made us feel that outdoor is fun .And since we spent 3 days in pool and it motivated All our friends to take swimming class . 



Sunday, May 1, 2011

Our first stage performance

This year in Kannada kuta's Ugadi celebration on 30th april 2011 we decided to take part as their rules says we need minimum of 6 people to do the show so since we were alredy 6 people in our playdate group we decided on doing one janapada nrithya based on women's journey from teenager to motherhood.

  We decided to give some part to kids also as they had done a small dance with less audience  so we were sure that kids can pull off the show.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KiwgwmXKEWQ

this is our second performance.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cSkM5XEtb44

So we started practice right away and it was coming really well we did the props as the day was getting close  days we took do the props and decide on the costume.I was getting scared thinking kids wont dance on stage but they proved me wrong ,the program came out really well i will post the video once i get hold of it till then i guess i will post some pics here.i must not forget me and Raghu had told him if he does the performance really well he will be getting some toys.We fooled him by opening his birthday toy and giving him,the happiness what he felt once he got the toy was really amazing .

Akshata

My little super star is 3

I just cannot believe its almost 3 years now .On this same day in 2008 pradhan was born in the afternoon and he was so little by then but now he is our little superstar .We had a blast on his Birthday this time as he had decided on the theme of the party which we had on both days 17th &23rd april 2011 Obivisouly the theme  was Thomas the tank engine,we got the cakes based on the theme and we had worn indian attire for both the days,both the party was really good,everyone enjoyed the party.

   Especially Pradhan as it was based on his favorite cartoon character.here is his evite which we had sent  http://smilebox.com/playEmail/4d6a4d354e7a51344d4464384e5455314d6a63344f44513d0d0a&sb=1


akshata

Friday, April 8, 2011

Vada


This week i had a Potluck and i decided to make Dahi vada,so i prepared this vada and i must it looked yum,my husband is fond of these vada so once in a while i do prepare them.Vada's are famous in South India you make with Channa dal and urad dal,here i have prepared urad dal vada but with a twist.


Ingredients
* 1 cup Urad dal
* 1/4 cup channa dal
* 1/2 cup onion
*2 spoons pepper corn
*chopped green chillies
*chopped coriander
*chopped ginger
*1/4 cup coconut pieces
*salt to taste
*oil to fry



Method

* Soak urad dal and channa dal for 2 hours and grind it to a thick & smooth paste ,add 1 spoon of water as required for the mixer.
*Grind ginger, chillies and pepper to a coarse mixture and add it to the batter.Also add the coconut pieces,salt to taste
*Take some of this batter on your left palm and make a small hole in the centre and carefully place it in the kadai with hot oil.
*Deep fry on a low flame till a reddish brown colour is reached.


Akshata






Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Aloo Mattar With South Indian touch

Ingreidents,


1 cup chopped Potato
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 chopped Tomato
1 cup peas (frozen/soaked overnight)
1 teaspoon redchilli powder
Pinch of turmeric powder
Small Sized Jaggery
Salt to Taste
!/4 cup of coconut
2 tablespoon Sambhar powder
1 teaspoon Ginger -Garlic paste
Pinch of Aseofotida
chopped coriander leaves
2 teaspoon oil
1 teaspoon Mustard seeds
1 teaspoon Urad Dal
2-3 curry leaf

Recipe

Peel the potato and chop it to medium sized,in the same manner chop the tomato and onion.
Put all the vegetables and the frozen or soaked Green peas in the pressure cooker,add salt ,redchilli powder,
turmeric powder,jaggery,and enough water to soak the vegetables cook them well (1-2 whistle)Once done transfer it to a bigger pan.

Add grated coconut ,ginger garlic paste and the sambhar powder in the mixer and grind it to a fine paste ,by adding enough water(if using frozen coconut thaw it priorly)

In a Pan add Mustard seeds,Urad dal and oil,once starts splattering,add aseofotida ,to this add the boiled vegetables,ground masala bring them to boil add required amount of water and salt,stir well for 3 -4 minutes in low flame and serve hot with chapati/poori.



Akshata






















Monday, March 28, 2011

Palak Paneer

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup ghee (clarified butter)
  • 1 bulb garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted cumin seed
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 (3 inch) piece ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon Dhaniya-jeera powder
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup water, or as needed
  • 1 cup ( (10 ounce) box frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained)/fresh Spinach
  • 1 pound paneer, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1/2 cup cashew nut paste for thick consistency 

Directions

  1. Melt ghee in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir in garlic and cumin seed; cook until the garlic softens, about 3 minutes. Add tomato paste, ginger,1 teaspoon dhaniya jeera powder, 1/2 teaspoon garam masala,1tea spoon red chilli powder ,cashew nut paste, salt, onion, and water. Increase heat to medium, and stir until the tomato paste dissolves. Simmer slowly , adding water as needed to maintain a sauce-like consistency.
  2. Stir in spinach and cook until hot, about 5 minutes. Add paneer, and allow to cook an additional 5 minutes, or until hot. Pour into a serving dish and sprinkle with cilantro and remaining garam masala.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Kajjikayi

When i was a child my neighbor would give me and my brother this KAJJIKAYI as they were originally from coorg they would prepare this regularly and we just loved it ,if i think of those days those where really fun..So today weather was moderate and was cold out here in chicago so i was getting this crazy craving for Kajjikayi and i decided to prepare it ,here goes the recipe

Recipe of KajjiKayi

Ingrediens

*cardamom -pinch
*cashew-nuts - 10 numbers
*ghee - 1tbsp
*grated coconut fresh or dry -1cup
*koya optional
*maida - 1cup
*oil to fry
*raisins- 10 number
*sooji- 1 cup
*sugar- 1 cup
*water as needed




Directions to prepare Kajjikayi

  1. In a bowl add maida,ghee mix well then add little water and make a dough.
     2.Take a pan add ghee,cashew-nuts,raisins saute them and then add Sooji roast for some then add coconut grated roast till it changes colour to slight golden brown,then add koya,sugar,cardamom powder mix well and keep it a side.

    3. Now take the dough make a small thin puris stuff the mixture and spread water at the edges and press the edges and make as shape at the edges make all and keep it a side.

    4.Now take a pan add oil to fry deep fry these stuffed kajjikayi and remove when it is slight golden brown colour.

Kajjikaya has a light, crisp exterior and as you bite into this crescent shaped sweet, its crunchy texture with the subtle sweet flavor of dried coconut and sugar laced with a tinge of cardamom, stretches into every bite, leaving you very satisfied and craving for more. The sweetness of the kajjikaya is subtle that you can easily have 2 to 3 kajjikayalu without feeling heavy.

Kajjikayalu can be eaten anytime of the day and makes a great tea time snack or an after lunch/dinner dessert. Kajjikaya is similar to the popular Maharastrian sweet ‘Karanji’ which is prepared using mawa (khoya /thickened milk) instead of semolina.

Monday, March 14, 2011

PLAY AND LEARN

As the spring is not officially started yet our park district sends us the booklet of activities in which kids can get enrolled so this time i have enrolled him in 4 classes so he is busy 4 days of the week and is away from Thomas .
Monday-Gymnastics
which he just loves because he gets to jump on the air bag and can do summer salts ,monkey bars everything each week they have theme and he has now another 3 classes he lost one class as he is really sick this week .and he enjoys maximum in half an hour we both head to our play date at our friends place and we get a chance monthly once and it will be at our place.


Tuesdays and thursdays-Play and learn
This is a class where Pradhan has to leave me for one hour and must be by himself this just that he is getting ready for school he enjoys these kind of classes first day he was liitle quite he didnt play with anyone he was just glued to thomas as the teacher had place those toys in the class he didnt do any of the group plays or activity table ,but as he entered into second week of the class he had made a friend and would socialize with other kids too so these where the changes i noticed in his report card as they give it every class .
I was scared the first day to send him to the class how will he react as it was a change for him after coming back from India but he was normal he told me bye amma and gave me a hug ,and he wanted me to leave second week was even worst as soon as we entered the community center he gave me his coat and told me bye he didnt want me to come inside but i had to go as he could'nt recognise his name tag and has to wash his hands before entering the class and starting the day .


As he started leaving me and going to the class i have made time for myself and started to take a walk in the tracks so i can shed some weight


Wednesday-My own time


As the name suggests here he has to be al by himself in the class even this a 1 hour class he enjoys it,the only difference here from the play and learn class is he can take crafts home which he  has  done in the class i enjoy treasuring them here is the pic showing what he is doing in the class.




akshata

Having Fun with drums

I am posting this topic a bit late because didnt get time to write about this ,after coming back from india my friend called me for her Son's birthday party so i went out to the toy shop to get a toy ,Pradhan was sitting in the cart and he said to me amma i want the drum but i ignored it and i thought it would be a perfect gift to a 4 year old boy so without hesitating i picked it up and once we got home he was adamant that i open the drums for him and allow him to play it ,1 hour we tried to distract but in vain,at last we gave in and had to open the set and assembled it and gave him

To our surprise without any formal training he could play the drums as a proffesional ,we were just happy and proud of him at this small age he could concentrate on videos what he saw in youtube and reproduce it.Here is the peice.enjoy


Akshata

Friday, March 4, 2011

Pizza


Today as i had gone out for shopping groceries my son asked me mommy please can i have pizza,i just didnt want him to eat the frozen pizza so i decided to make pizza at home from scratch so i got all the ingredients and i must tell you it came out really good after having 1 slice my son told me mommy it is YUMMY..

here goes the recipe

ingredients

* 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
* 1 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
* 2 tablespoons canola oil
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 teaspoon sugar
* 2-3/4 to 3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
*

SAUCE:
* 1 can (15 ounces) Hunt’s® Tomato Sauce
* 3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/8 teaspoon pepper
*

TOPPING:

* 1/2 cup chopped onion
* 1 medium green pepper, sliced
* 1-1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Directions

* In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Add the oil, salt, sugar and 2 cups flour. Beat on medium speed for 3 minutes. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
* Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rest in a warm place for 10 minutes.
* Meanwhile, combine sauce ingredients; set aside Divide dough in half. On a floured surface, roll each portion into a 13-in. circle. Transfer to greased 12-in. pizza pans; build up edges slightly. Prick dough thoroughly with a fork.
* Spread sauce over to within 2-in. of edges; sprinkle with the onion, green pepper and cheese. Bake for 20 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Yield: 2 pizzas (8 servings each, 2 slices per serving).

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Fun In India

It is almost 2 months now that we are in India ,I must tell time just flies so fast i just feel its yesterday .Before coming to India i was feeling home sick because i hadn't met my parents,brother for almost 2 years,they were also eagerly waiting for us  here

I felt happy after seeing Pradhan get adjusted with his grandmother and cousins he enjoyed the stay there and he learnt to talk faster than i excpected ,everyone were happy to see him call his sister ananya as anina it became the talk of the house ,after initial 2 days of jet lag we got settled with the routine.
i wanted relish the food here in India so i had masala puri ,pani puri,cold badam milk which i drank in Asha sweets whenever i went to malleshwaram so gradually i gained weight and was feeling guilty but couldnt stop myself.
the daily routine of pradhan was to call our neighbours kids to home and play with them ,time flew so fast that Raghu came to India in december,we went back to Mavanthoor for our month long stay in the midst of nature , here pradhan enjoyed to the core as Medha [his cousin]had come to stay with us for her christmas vaccation so all the three cousins would wake up early and play the whole day ,we enjoyed seeing him play like that ,we know he would miss them all once we get back to US.

During our stay we visited Golden temple ,vellore we left home around 2:30 pm and drove for almost 4 hrs ,during which my brother drove so fast that raghu literally got scared because raghu is considered safe driver in his friends circle ,but once we entered the temple vicinity all the scareness vanished in air and we were mecmerised by the site of the temple as it was covered with gold and it was similar to amritsar's golden temple ,it was really good trip as we went as a family .and after the visit we left vellore around 9 pm and reached home around 1 am .

next 2 days we became busy and later on 10th raghu left to US and i had just 2 weeks more for me to leave all of them and fly to US