Everyday Cooking/ Maharashtrian/ Spring - Summer Special/ Subji / Curry/ Superfoods

कारल्याची भाजी / Karlyachi Bhaji / Bitter Gourd Stir Fry in Maharashtrian Style

5 different tastes in one bite! It's a culinary master piece!

I have always told people who asked me about my favorite vegetables that I love Karlyachi Bhaji and especially the way my mom makes it. The surprise on their face made me feel proud for earning brownie points for being a good kid who eats all vegetables, including bitter gourd.

Any preparation of bitter gourd will have a pronounced bitter taste and it should, it’s not easy to mask bitter taste but it plays well with well chosen ingredients. This particular preparation which uses tangy tamarind, nutty peanuts, creamy coconut, sweet jaggery and spicy Goda Masala is a classical example of Marathi cuisine from Konkan region.

karlyachi bhaji

I was very happy with my attempt to mimic  mom’s magical taste. The best reward was that my husband really enjoyed it, which was quite a shock for me!karela with Goda masala

Karlyachi Bhaji

Karlyachi Bhaji

5 tastes in one byte! It's a culinary master piece!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. If you are using ready made tamarind paste, skip this step. Else, in a small bowl add 1 spoonful of tamarind and some water, microwave it for 10 seconds and let it sit aside.
  2. Wash bitter melons and cut them length wise, if you see any bigger seeds remove them with a spoon or inner side of a peeler. Now chop them into smaller equal sized pieces.
  3. Add these chopped pieces to a bowl with some water and add 1 tbsp of salt, mix it well. The salt makes the bitter gourd release some juice and it takes away some bitterness. This step is optional but highly recommended.
  4. Now in a kadhai / heavy bottomed pan, heat some oil.  I use peanut oil and it works really well for this dish.
  5. Prepare phodani or tadka, by adding mustard seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, hing and turmeric powder.
  6. Now add bitter melon pieces by removing all the water. If you like squeeze out the water as much as you can.
  7. Stir fry it for 2-3 minutes.
  8. Now add ground peanuts, grated coconut, tamarind paste and mix it well.
  9. Add red chili powder, cumin-coriander powder, Goda masala and finally some salt. Mix everything together and let it cook for another 2-3 minutes.
  10. Add jaggery, cook it further for 2 minutes.
  11. Adjust the amount of jaggery / salt as per your taste.

Enjoy it hot with poli or fulka! Bon apetite!

bitter gourd stir fry

Back to Basics

How to make Yogurt / Curd / दही at Home

Yogurt is a complete protein (it contains all essential amino acids) and is also a healthy source of calcium, magnesium, and other essential vitamins. More importantly its active bacterial cultures aid in digestion. No wonder it’s an important part of any Indian meal.

Making yogurt at home is very simple and it will also save you some bucks. Like most other homemade things, you will love the yogurt you will make at home because

  • It tastes much better
  • Its healthier with no added preservative, sugar or any thing else you don’t recognize as food
  • It’s as much Organic and Natural as the milk and the yogurt you use.
  • It’s fresh
  • It’s less expensive.

homemade_yogurt

If you use whole milk, you will get fuller, creamier and thicker yogurt and these qualities reduce as the percentage of fat in the milk used. So I generally add some whole milk to 2% to make yogurt with better consistency.  I don’t believe in zero-fat foods so I haven’t tried making zero-fat yogurt at home.

Before we make yogurt, let’s see if you know the answer to this question. If we have 1 cup of milk and 1 cup of yogurt, which one do you think has more moisture or more water content? The right answer is they both contain equal amount of moisture. The yogurt contains about 86% of water and milk contains about 87% of water.

So how do we obtain yogurt from milk? We add a small quantity of starter yogurt which contains active bacteria to the milk and let it sit for a while with a lid on it. You will notice there is hardly any evaporation so the moisture content in the milk is preserved. So what happens is when you add the bacteria and let it ferment the milk, the bacteria eat the lactose (the sugar found in milk) and produce lactic acid. The lactic acid will reduce the pH of the milk to 4 to 4.6. Finally it reaches an isoelectric point for the protein when the protein starts coming together and forming a kind of gel matrix. The gel matrix entraps the moisture and you have your yogurt. It’s the protein structure which gives the yogurt its firm consistency and due to the lactic acid, it’s not good if you have acidity issues. In fact it will increase your Pitta if you have sour yogurt without any sugar.

Lactic acid formation definitely benefits from heat. Hence in warmer climates as in certain parts of India, it takes only 3-4 hours for yogurt to set. But if you live in colder regions such as USA, you will have to do something extra to get the temperature right.

Let’s first look at the basic step to make homemade yogurt. You just need two ingredients

Homemade Yogurt

Homemade Yogurt

The healthy source of protein and calcium!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

Preferably use homemade yogurt. (Ask your friends!) Store bought yogurt doesn't always work as it may not contain sufficient bacterias and contains added preservatives.

  1. Add milk to a medium steel pan and bring it to a boil.
  2. Let it sit aside to cool down.
  3. When it's lukewarm add the yogurt and stir the milk in one direction, so that it mixes well.
  4. Now cover it and let it sit for 4-5 hours. Don't disturb the pot and strictly no peeping!.

To maintain the temperature of the milk, here are some things you can do.

  1. Preheat oven to 250F and keep the pot inside the oven for 3-4 hours. Switch off the oven as soon as it’s preheated. The heat is sufficient for the bacterias to start doing their job.
  2. Keep the pot in the sun, it will help only if it’s warm.
  3. Cover the pot with a blanket and keep it in a warmer area of your kitchen. You might have to keep it overnight.

Once it’s set store it in the refrigerator and make sure you consume it within 3-4 days. For next batch you can now use your homemade yogurt as a starter.

  •  I love plain yogurt mixed with a pinch of  sugar, salt and cumin-coriander powder.
  • Blackberries blended with yogurt, topped with honey makes a great breakfast smoothie.blackberry-smoothie
  • You can also enjoy it by making raita with cucumber, carrots or onion or try some fruits such as apples or pineapple.baked_falafel
  • If you feel adventurous, try this simple pumpkin raita recipe.BHoplyache Bharit pumpkin raita
  • Buttermilk is my favorite after-dinner drink and it’s also a refreshing summer drink!
    buttermilk
Rice & Dal/ South Indian

Chettinad Pakoda Kuzhambu

Chettinad is a region in south Tamilnadu and is well know for its unique cuisine which emphasize the use of various whole spices and fresh coconut. This month’s SNC challenge was a savory curry made in chettinad style. This was my first time preparing Chettinad cuisine and since I have not tasted this particular curry, I was not entirely sure about what to expect or how it should really taste. But take my word for it. it was absolutely delicious. The addition of coconut, cashews and roasted chana dal adds a whole new dimension to our regular onion-tomato gravy and also alters its texture in a soothing way. Curry leaves and the roasted chana dal reinforce the south indian flavors while chana dal pakoda with crushed fennel seeds offer a new surprise at every bite. All in all, it’s a wonderful dish, you can serve it with rice or idli or dosa.chettinad pakoda kuzhambu 2

south-vs-north-blue

 

Thanks to Priya from Priya’s Versatile Recipes for sharing this Chettinad speciality with us.

 

 

Chettinad Pakoda Kuzhambu

Chettinad Pakoda Kuzhambu

Chana dal pakodas dipped in South Indian gravy makes a perfect pairing with rice.

Ingredients:

Instructions:

For preparing Pakoda -

  1. Soak chana dal for at least two hours. 
  2. Grind chana dal with some fennel seeds and dry red chilis to a coarse paste. Add water only if needed.
  3. Heat enough oil in a pan so that you can deep fry multiple pakodas at a time. Make pakodas with your fingers and drop them in hot oil on low-medium heat. Fry them until golden brown. Keep them aside.chana dal pakoda

For preparing gravy -

  1. Grind all ingredients listed under "To Grind" above to a fine paste with some water.
  2. In a heavy bottom pan / kadhai, heat some oil and all whole Garam masala listed under "For Seasoning" and fry for a minute or so or until you can smell it.
  3. Add chopped onions and garlic and fry it for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add chopped tomato and let them cook for  sometime.
  5. Now add the coconut paste and also add 4 cups of water. Let it simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Add red chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder and salt and give it a stir. Let it cook for 5 minutes with lid on.
  7. Add pakodas and let it simmer further for 2 minutes. Add more water if needed. Pakodas will absorb the water so make sure you add enough.

Serve it hot with rice / idli or dosa.

chettinad pakoda kuzhambu 1

Breakfast/ Events/ Gujarati/ Snacks

હાંડવો / Handavo / Savory Lentil Cake and Bake Fest June 2013 Announcement

Gujaratis are known for their variety of farsan – snacks – dhokla, khaman, shev-khamni, khandvi, gote, lochyo, kachori, mathiya, muthiya …. it’s a long list. I have previously posted two recipes for muthiya – dudhi na muthiya and palak-methi na muthiya. Handvo or Handawa is yet another healthy Gujarati snack which is not deep fried. It’s actually baked!handvo

Traditionally this savory lentil cake is baked in an aluminium pot filled with sand in the bottom, which when heated, provides dry heat just like our modern ovens. I found it quite interesting. It’s prepared with a mixture of different dal flours such as chana dal, toor dal and urad dal and rice flour. The veggies such as dudhi (lauki), lilwa tuwer – which is a speciality of Gujarat and mutter maintain the moisture and yogurt helps it ferment before you bake it. It cannot be classified as a Gujarati dish until it’s seasoned with oil tadaka! You might be tempted to try it without the oil but please don’t unless you want to miss the real charm. The oil seasoning with mustard seeds and sesame seeds makes it very special and very Indian.

I used handwa flour I bought at an Indian grocery store. If you want to make it at home, please scroll down I have mentioned the proportions of the dals and rice. Don’t use the instant handvo mixtures, they contain lot of citric acid and the taste is nowhere close to an authentic dish.

Handavo / Handwa / Savory Lenti Cake

Handavo / Handwa / Savory Lenti Cake

Savory non deep fried lentil cake!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Prepare batter using handvo flour, yogurt, ginger-garlic paste, ajwain seeds, turmeric powder, chopped green chilis, salt and a pinch of sugar. 
  2. Let it sit for 6-7 hours or overnight.
  3. Then add grated doodhi and other vegetables.
  4. Add fruit salt and whisk it in one direction until the batter becomes light.
  5. Pour this batter in loaf pan or muffin pan and bake it at 350 F for 30-35 minutes for a loaf pan and 20-25 minutes for muffin pan.
  6. In a small skillet, prepare tadka with oil, mustard seeds, cumin seeds and sesame seeds. Add this on top and serve it warm.

Notes:

You can more veggies like fresh methi leaves, spinach leaves or zucchini.

For Homemade Handavo Flour soak all these ingredients for 3-4 hours and grind toa fine paste.

  • 1 cup rice
  • 1/4 cup tour dal
  • 1/4 cup chana dal
  • 1/4 cup urad dal

Sending this to Dish it Out event.

I am so happy to let you know that I am hosting Vardhini’s Bake Fest event for June 2013. Teh event is open from June 1st till June 30th. Here are some rules –

  • Send in any recipe which has been baked / broiled.
  • Only vegetarian or vegan recipes please.But Eggs are okay for baked dishes.
  • Usage of the logo is mandatory as it helps spread the word.BakeFest-200
  • Linking to original Bake Fest page and this announcement is mandatory.
  • Leave a comment below.
  • You can link your old entries if they are reposted with the below links and the logo.
  •  You can send in any number of new entries and a maximum of 2 old entries.

Looking forward to your innovative creations. Happy baking!


Spring - Summer Special/ Travelicious

Glimpses of Mt Shasta and Crater Lake

Blue clear sky, a canvas of lush green meadow with tiny bright yellow flowers, dancing with the wind, tall pine trees all around, snow topped mountains in the backdrop and the sweet chime of rushing water! The experience which will let you experience “bliss”! All my senses were awakened. Lying under the sun at noon turned into a joyful moment – at that moment I felt the connection with the nature. Pure happiness unfolded in my heart, that happiness was beauty, the beauty of the nature.mt shasta city park

The first unplanned trip we did which surprised us at every moment. The experience was worth sharing and hence this post all about our trip to City of Mount Shasta and Crater Lake National Park.

I am the planner in my family. I feel every trip should be well planned and timed depending on what we want to do. I  always do some research about the local places and the best spots to visit and eat. That makes it a successful, hassle free trip. Well I found an exception to my rule, which means the rule is now proven 🙂

Swapnil’s relatives booked a cabin near Crater Lake National Park and we decided to join them; we didn’t want to miss on an opportunity to play with their three kids. We started on Friday and stopped at Redding which is about 4 hours from our place. Redding is the largest city in the Shasta Cascade region. A good place for an overnight stop, has all typical chain restaurants close to highway so finding a familiar breakfast place is easy. The newest attraction at Redding is its Sundial Bridge, which is pedestrian bridge completed in 2004 over Sacramento River. The north-south orientation of the pylon happens to act as a sundial as well, not so exciting as it is accurate only on  the summer solstice. We skipped it.

Our impromptu plan was to cover Mount Shasta vista points and head north to Crater Lake. There are many options with many scenic byways which slither through Lassen volcanic region. But constrained by limied time, we chose the fastest route – I5 North.

Just after 5-6 miles up north from Redding, there is a vista point from where you can see three Shastas – Mount Shasta, Shasta Lake and Shasta Dam. From intersection of Shasta Dam Blvd and Lake Blvd drive west, until you see a visitor center. You can see the wall of Shasta Dam and serene lake water behind it and mount Shasta in the background. They run hourly guided tours of Shasta Dam if you are interested.

We then headed back to I5 and went straight to City of Mount Shasta. On a clear day, you can see the snow capped mount Shasta as soon as you enter the city. It has a small downtown street with local coffee shops and bakeries. We drove ahead to Mount Shasta City Park. Located at the base of the mountain, this was a hidden gem. Every tourist site will mention this spot for the Sacramento River Headwaters but there is more to it.

As you enter inside, you will see a wooden structure and parking around it. Walk in the direction of the sound of water stream and you will be rewarded with the purest water on the earth. People filling up their water tanks is a common thing here. The Sacramento river, which flows 270 miles from here to the Golden Gate in San Francisco, originates in the ice-cold waters of Big Spring, issuing from a lava tube deep within Mt. Shasta. That water flows into Cold Creek here in the park, the Sacramento River’s most northerly feeder stream.sacramento river headwaters

Walk down a few steps and there is a small bridge which leads to small trails. The whole site was so soothing to eyes, green trees, fresh leaves and clear water making sweet natural sound. A small bench in front was a perfect place for meditation. I just loved that spot. mt shasta city park 2

I looked behind and I was thrilled to see the green grass field with small yellow flowers. I was so tempted, I looked at Swapnil and he just nodded  By the time he said “Go ahead”, I was already on the ground. DSC_0123The wet grass with the flowers didn’t bother me at all. I generally cannot stand the direct sun at any time of the day and here I was lying under the sun at noon. So relaxing! No wonder Mt Shasta is famous for meditation, there is something magical here. We were really happy to be there. There were some people playing drums and mouth organs and a beautiful lady doing belly dance moves matching the beats. Dancing in a park with strangers, not just strangers but hippie strangers, checked!

There are small trails which take you around the water but we did not have enough time to explore those as our under the sun relaxation lasted for a long time. We headed back to the downtown with our bottles filled with the cool water. While I was yelping for local places, “Prana Produce” caught our attention and we decided to check out that grocery store. We also wanted to buy some milk and fruits for the kids. Till now, I thought it was a popular meditation place among hippies and so we saw some at the park. But nope, I was wrong. We were the only non-hippies at the store. Their staff, their workers, their customers, all were hippies. And these are not your polished urban grown SF hippies or wannabe Austin hippies, these were real deal. No wonder organic, natural and healthy food, I mean “Prana Produce” were so easily available. Their blackboard read thisberryvale groceryberryvale grocery productsThe name of the store is BerryVale Produce. It also has a small kitchen which serves fresh sandwiches, wraps, pasta and soups also smoothies and coffee. We liked their Vegetarian Sandwich with pesto sauce. The carrot juice was way better than Jamba Juice. And the soup of the day – Punjab Lentil soup hit the mark. The aisles were filled with organic super foods and the religious stuff as well. Look what we saw –

Next time, I would buy food from this place and go to the park to have a picnic. There is always something going on so entertainment is taken care of and the nature and the water will always make you happy.

We wanted to reach out resort before dark, so we didn’t stop at any other spots. The drive was a real pleasure. Pine trees, green mountains and winding road with very little traffic. As we entered the Crater Lake National Park area, the road became so pristinely beautiful.  No turns, straight as a line, lined with tall Pine trees on both sides, chilly winds and no vehicles. It was picture perfect.DSC_0140

To our surprise, we saw Made in India Mahindra on the US soil! mahindra on US soilNext day, we started for Crater lake. The drive was smooth even though it was raining and snowing. We reached the visitor center and walked up a few steps in the snow.  The lake was beautiful, the blue water surrounded by snow capped mountains called for a long photo session. Found this time lapse video that captured the lake at night.

We had a great time with the kids, playing in the snow and building a snow man.fun in the snow

The visitor center was quite disappointing as it didn’t have any vegetarian food or it was over by the time we reached there. There is one restaurent on your way to Rim Village, called Annie’s Restaurant which has descent food options. The East rim was closed due to the snow so we couldn’t drive to the other side of the lake. We returned back to our resort, enjoyed homemade khichadi and talked till late hours. Next day we did stop at BerryVale Grocery place for a quick healthy lunch on our way back. It was a refreshing and rejuvenating trip.

Desserts/ Spring - Summer Special

Qubani Ka Meetha / Apricot Dessert

Qubani is an Urdu word for Apricots. And this dessert – Qubani Ka Meetha which itself translates to stewed Apricot dessert is a specialty of Hyderabad. It was the challenge posed by Roha from Hyderabadi Cuisine as part of  SNC ( South Vs North Challenge), which as you might know is a brainchild of Divya from YouTooCanCook, you can read about it more here.

When I first saw this in my inbox I was almost jumping with joy. Apricots are one of my favorite fruits. What I like about apricot is its distinct aromatic flavor. Currently farmer’s markets in the US are boasting California’s “spring gold” – the fresh Apricots. Its velvety golden skin, sweet-tart taste and the fragrance makes it unique.

Thanks to Roha, we now have an unbelievably quick recipe to enjoy apricots. No wonder the dessert is very common in  Hyderabadi weddings. It’s really really simple yet elegant. They generally use dried apricots as fresh apricots are seasonal and they are not native to India. It’s served with cream or custard or ice-cream on top which is completely missing from my plate this time but I have promised myself to do a complete justice to this delicious dessert next time!Stewed Apricot Dessert

Qubani Ka meetha

Qubani Ka meetha

Simplest Apricot dessert you have ever known!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. In a deep bowl, add washed apricots and cover them with water. Soak them overnight. (up to 4-5 hours)
  2. Apricots will become softer and will absorb the water. Take out the apricots and  keep the soaking liquid aside, it contains the apricot flavor.
  3. Now remove the seeds carefully and crack them open to get the apricot kernel, these will be used as garnish.Apricot Almonds
  4. In a non-stick saucepan, add soaking liquid, the apricots and some sugar. Let it cook on medium heat for 10-12 minutes until it turns golden brown. You can also add a few drops of lemon juice.Apricot Dessert in making 1
  5. Taste and add more sugar if you like, while it's still cooking. I also added some Apricot kernels so that they also cook little bit.
  6. You can also blanch the Apricot kernels and remove their skin. I skipped this step.
  7. Feel free to add some water or milk if the mixture looks very dry. It should be pulpy and mushy.
  8. When almost done, add few strands of saffron and cardamom powder.Apricot Dessert in making 2
  9. Let it cool down,

Serve it cold with your favorite ice cream scoop or fresh cream, topped with pistachios slices.

Desserts/ Festival Special/ Maharashtrian/ Smoothie/ South Indian

Moogachi Kheer / Parippu Kanji – A Festive Lentil and Jaggery Porridge

A healthy festive drink!

Last Monday we celebrated Akshay Trutiya, a religious occasion which calls for a sweet treat. “Akshay” means the never diminishing in Sanskrit and this day falls on the third Tithi (Lunar day) of Bright Half (Shukla Paksha) of the Indian month of Vaishakha and one of the 3 and 1/2 “the most auspicious days” or also known as “Sade-Teen Muhurt” considered by Hindus. It’s believed that Akshay Trutiya was the day when Lord Ganesha started writing epic Mahabharata to Ved Vyasa’s dictation. It’s considered auspicious to start a new venture or a new job, buy new property and jewelry too.

Every year my aajji used to celebrate Akshay trutiya by buying a gold coin and visiting the Vishnu temple. And I used to wait for her to come back so that I could get the prasad – the sweets! She tried making new sweets every time and this Moong Kheer (Porridge) was one of those innumerable treats I have had from her. Parippu Kanji

Traditionally it’s served warm but I like it chilled too. A very simple lentil kheer with just over 3 ingredients. Easy to make yet rates quite high on healthy spectrum which is quite unusual for an Indian sweet.Here is what you need.

Moogachi Kheer

Moogachi Kheer

A festive healthy drink!  the two words fit in one sentence quite rarely!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Lightly toast the moong dal with some ghee in a heavy bottom pan on medium heat. Do not let them turn brown. You should be able smell their nutty aroma.Toasted Moong Dal
  2. Add one cup of water to moong dal and pressure cook it for 2 whistels. They should be well cooked with very little water left in your cooking pot. It will have soft and smushy texture.
  3. Meanwhile, add jaggery in 1/2 cup water an dlet it dissolve completely. Strain the mixture in order to separate any impurities. Keep it aside.
  4. Using a potato masher or churner, mash the lentils so they become creamy but still have some bits in it.
  5. Put these cooked lentils and the jaggery solution in a pan and let it come to a boil, stirring frequently. Turn down the heat and let it simmer for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally to make sure it does not stick to the bottom and burn.
  6. Add the milk and stir till mixed well, and turn up the heat a bit. Bring it to a boil, and let it cook for another minute.
  7. Take it off the heat and then add the powdered ginger and the cardamom. Stir well.

Let it cool a bit before you pour it in glasses. Serve it warm. This recipe serves 4 to 6 depending on size of serving.

Tips:

  1. Toasting helps to bring out the nuttiness which makes the kheer more flavorful. But be careful not to turn them brown or it would overpower the taste.
  2. Before adding milk, stir frequently as it doen't contain lot of liquid and it may stick to the bottom and burn.
  3. Add basil leaves and a pinch of saffron before serving. Adds another dimension to the simple flavors.

Paruppu KanjiI recently came to know that this is also known as Parippu Kanji or Paruppu Kanji where “parippu” is lentils and “kanji” is  porridge in Tamil and it’s almost synonymous to Shivratri in some communities.  I think it completely makes sense. The kheer made of moong dal, a rich source of protein yet easy on digestion system and jaggery which is unrefined sugar, high in energy,  added with milk, sounds like a perfect recipe which is light but nutritious for a fasting day. Enjoy your healthy treat!

Smoothie/ Spring - Summer Special/ Superfoods

Almond Energy Drink

A drink that makes every morning a good morning!

We seem to be sacrificing more of our time and energy to our high-speed wireless culture and as a result exhaustion has become a familiar aspect of our lives. All too often we forget to take care of ourselves. How many times you consider yourself an important part of your life? Making room in your frantic schedule for some downtime is equally important as intentionally replenishing your energy with healthy and wholesome food.

Here is my recipe for an energizing drink, a perfect start for your day! It contains just 4 simple ingredients, natural sugar. And if you are searching for those buzz words, yes it’s high in protein and fibre.

Almond Energy DrinkThere is a small preparation involved, but the gains are sweet! Soak all the ingredients in water / milk on previous night. Dates provide the perfect sweetness with no added sugar. Almonds give some bite to this nourishing milkshake.

Almond Energy Drink

Almond Energy Drink

Ingredients:

Instructions:

Soak almonds in 1/2 cup of water overnight. No need to refrigerate almond.

In a medium bowl, add 1/2 cup milk and 2 dates, roughly chopped. Mix 1 tsp of poppy seeds and keep it in the refrigerator overnight.

When you are ready to treat yourself, peel the almond skin off and roughly chop them. In a blender all almonds, and the soaked dates and poppy seeds with the milk. Add more milk if you wish. Blend everything together.

Enjoy your nourishing drink!

Almond Date MilkshakeAccording to Ayurveda, almonds are energizing, nourishing and the only “satvic” nuts which do not increase “rajas” or “tamas” properties in our body. Also Date is the only fruit allowed to be paired with milk as it doesn’t contain any vitamin C that would react adversely with milk. Poppy seeds, the tiny little seeds also known as “Khas Khas” in Marathi, are a good source of dietary fibre and are also rich in minerals like Calcium, Manganese and Phosphorous.

Hope you like it. Join us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/MyHomeMantra) for more updates!

Happy mothers day!

Events

WTML April 2013 Roundup

I was happy to host Gayathri’s WTML event and was happier to see 159 entries! Assembling this post took lot of efforts, thanks to all the participants.

The winner as selected by Gayathri is Nabanita Das from Esho-Bosho-Aahare and her winning entry is Kesari Badam Kulfi. Congratulations!!

I have grouped the dishes roughly into appetizers / snacks, desserts and main entrees. Hope you find this helpful. There are more entries and I will add those to the list eventually. Meanwhile, join us at https://www.facebook.com/MyHomeMantra for more updates.







Breakfast/ Events/ Punjabi/ Roti Paratha Dosa & More/ Winter Special

मुळ्याचे पराठे / Muli Paratha and WTML April 2013 Event Announcement with a Giveaway!!

मुळा / Muli or White Radish and शेपू / Savaa or Dill, the two vegetables I hated from my core white I was little. I gave my mom hard time since she either had to convince me for eating it or make something else . Convincing me was a harder task than preparing something else. She tried many ways to hide these vegetables in other dishes. the characteristic smell the two vegetables have turned out to be my biggest advantage.

It was quite rare to have my mom open the door for me as I return from school since her office timings never coincided with my school hours. It was one of those lucky days during Ganapati Festival. The rains were unstoppable and my mom decided to come home early. When I saw her at the door, I could not stop smiling. She then served me a ‘garama-garam’ (hot from the pan) paratha with mango pickle which is her ultimate speciality I have yet to conquer and some yogurt. It was so yummy and so satisfying. You can imagine, the slight coldness in the air with continuous pouring rains, the background Ganapati music which does not stop until power is completely disrupted (including generators)  and these soft, hot yummy parathas. I gave my mom a tight hug and said thank you for such delicious “aloo parathas”. Her smile only became bigger at that point. She replied, “Sure only if aloo was a new name for muli in my dictionary” Duh! Well since then muli paratha has been a permanent entry in our house menu and my favorite dishes.

Muli Paratha

 

Muli Paratha

Muli Paratha

Healthy and hearty Indian flat bread with white radish stuffing!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

Method:

  1. Prepare chapati dough by adding chapato flour, salt, red chili powder, turmeric, oil and warm water. 
  2. Add a tsp of hot oil and knead well.
  3. To prepare stuffing, in a medium bowl add grated white radish and boiled and smashed potatoes.
  4. Now add other spices and finely chopped coriander and mix well.
  5. The actual paratha is similar to any other parathas. For detailed instructions follow this procedure.
  6. Serve it hot with pickle and raita.

Tips:

White Radish sometimes has very strong smell. You can squeeze out the water from grated radish by adding some salt to it. By adding fennel seeds and ajwain seeds  help to reduce the strong smell.  Be careful with the salt if you add it to the grated radish, the stuffing and the dough.

 

muli parathaAnd now the Event Announcement! Last year I came across this wonderful event called WTML – Walking Through Memory Lane”. The event is a brainchild of Gayathri, a lovely lady and super innovative cook who writes about her culinary creations at Gayathri’s Cook Spot. As the name suggests, the event is all about recreating your childhood favorite dishes prepared by your mom, gradma, aunt or anyone special in your life. This is our chance to pay a small tribute to their cooking. I was instantly drawn to this idea and I submitted my “Rava Cake” recipe to her event and luckily I was the winner for that month’s giveaway. I received the wonderful book – Chocolate Cookbook by Tarla Dalal from Gayathri.

Long story short, Thanks to Gayathri, I am hosting this month’s WTML event at MyHomeMantra. Here are some simple rules.

  • Make your favorite dish which makes you cherish your childhood moments and also tell us a small story about the dish. Not just the recipe!
  • No restrictions on the number of story telling entries.
  • Only vegetarians dishes please.
  • You can link your old entries if they are reposted with the below links and the logo.
  • Link your post to my announcement page and Gayathri’s  WTML event page. That’s mandatory.
  • Add this logo to your posts, it helps spread the word.
  • Non bloggers can send me your recipes at myhomemantra [at] gmail [dot] com
  • The event is open from April 1 to April 30th

And the Big Giveaway – Gayathri will select an entry through random selection and give away the book for the selected entry.

Note that the books Gayathri gives are not sponsored and it is her own contribution to the event. You get a whole year’s subscription of Tarla Dalal’s Cooking and More as the giveaway. I am not eligible for the give away.

On the first of May, Gayathri will select a lucky winner and send a mail. After receiving her mail,you can give an address to which she has to ship the book. She will ship the book within India so if you reside abroad, please give an address in India for her to ship.

Let’s cherish our childhood memories with this wonderful event!


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