Friday, 27 February 2015

Red Coconut and Sesame Seed Chutney

This chutney is commonly served with thosai, idli, vadai or any deep fried savory snacks. You can easily find this type of chutney when you visit any of the South Indian restaurants. This  chutney along with Green chilli coconut chutney and sambar are popular dipping for Indian breakfast type of food. It's fresh, spicy and salty with extra zing that comes from raw small red onions. By adding two tablespoons of toasted white sesame seeds infused the nutty fragrance and enhance the flavor of fresh coconut. A cup of grated coconut seems to be a lot but it is a crucial component in this recipe as it gives dept and richness. Furthermore, its a kind of dipping you could prepare in jiffy.

Red Coconut and Sesame seed Chutney



Ingredients :


Grated fresh white coconut : 1 cup
Small red onions : 8
Tamarind paste : 1/4 tsp
White sesame seeds : 2 tbsp (toasted till golden brown in a heated pan without oil)
Asofetida or hing or perungaiyam : 1/4 tsp
Mustard seeds : 1 tsp
White urad dal: 1 tsp 
Curry leaves : a sprig
Dry red chilli : 9
Salt :  as needed



Method :


1. Grind the grated coconut, 8 dry red chillies, 8 small onions, asofetida, tamarind paste, salt and toasted sesame seeds by adding little water. The consistency has to be a bit loose but not watery and good enough for dipping. Make sure you process the mixture to a smooth paste. If using chunk of asofetida, then fry it in a little oil before grinding along with coconut mixture. 

2. In a heated pan, pour 1/2 tbsp of oil, start tempering the mustard seeds until you hear the crackling sound and then followed by add urad dal. Fry the urad dal till golden brown and immediately add one dry red chilli and curry leaves.

3. Pour the fried ingredients into the ground paste. Mix well and check whether the seasonings are perfect. If it is too thick, add water.

4. Serve this chutney with thosai, idli, pakora or any fried savory snack items. 

-Abby

Thursday, 26 February 2015

Eggless Pineapple Custard Jelly


Enjoy this wonderful and cooling dessert. Use only fresh fruits such as pineapple, strawberries or peaches. This recipe is using minimal sugar you may add more according to your preference.

Bon App├ętit !




Eggless Pineapple Custard Jelly

Ingredients :


Plain jelly Stripes: 1/4 cup (cut into small pieces and measure)
Fresh ripe pineapple : 1 cup
Brown caster sugar : 3 - 4 t tbsp (or more)
Salted butter : 1 tbsp
Water : 3 cups
Unsweetened evaporated milk : 1/2 cup
Vanilla extract :  1/2 tsp

Method :


1. First, soak the plain jelly strips in a sufficient water for an hour.
2. Then, boil the squeezed jelly strips in 3 cups of water until the jelly strips dissolved.

3. While waiting for dissolving process to finish, you may proceed by melting salted butter and some brown sugar till lightly caramelized. 

4. Now, mix the cubed pineapples and saute for 10 minutes.

5. After, jelly strips dissolved completely, you may add 1/2 cup of evaporated milk. Let it come to boil. Switch of the stove. 

6. Lastly, add 1/2 tsp of vanilla essence and pineapple mixture. Give a good stir.

7. Pour the jelly in a preferred mould and chill before serving.

-Abby

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Green Chilli Coconut Chutney (Dipping for thosai, vadai and idli)

This green chilli and coconut chutney is a basic culinary skill that should be mastered by all in their household. It is essential for Indians to serve chutney as a condiment for thosai, idli or flat-bread or even fried savory snack items. This type of chutney is considered to be fresh since not much of cooking is done on stove. Infact, raw and wholesome ingredients such as grated white coconut and green chillies are acting as a natural antiseptic promoter and the tempering ingredients will be able to enhance our digestive system. Therefore, it is always great to serve this fresh on the same day and you may even garnish the chutney with some coarsely chopped fresh cilantro or coriander leaves.


Green Chilli Coconut Chutney



Ingredients :

Grated fresh white coconut : 1/2 cup
Green chillies : 2 
Ginger : 1 1/2 inch piece
Roasted gram dal (Pottukadalai) : 1 tbsp
Asofetida : 2 pinches
Mustard seeds : 1/2 tsp
White urad dal: 1/2 tsp 
Dry red chilli : 1
Salt :  as needed



Method :

1. Grind the grated coconut, green chillies, small piece of ginger and roasted gram dal to a smooth paste by adding little water. The consistency has to be a bit loose but not watery and good enough for dipping. 

2. In a heated pan, pour two teaspoons of oil, start tempering the mustard seeds until you hear the crackling sound and then add urad dal. Fry the urad dal till golden brown and immediately add dry red chilli, asofetida and salt.

3. Pour the fried ingredients into the ground paste. Mix well and check whether the seasonings are perfect. If it is too thick, add water.

4. Serve this chutney with thosai, idli, pakora or any fried savory snack items. 



-Abby

Tomato Chutney

I just simply adore the colour of this tomato chutney as I'm always perplexed at how simple and minimal ingredients could turn a condiment to a tasty and fresh finger licking relish. The best part of making chutney is effortless concept adapted to ones satisfaction. What more you could ask for. I cannot resist this magical tempering ingredients that once start spluttering in the hot oil release the authentic Indian food aroma. I don't prefer to add tamarind for my chutney as it gives a kind of artificial sourness so you can always add two or three tomatoes if they are medium in size. 

Tomato Chutney



Ingredients :

Red onion (big) :1
Large Ripe tomato : 1
Curry leaves : 2 sprigs
Asofetida : a pinch
Mustard seeds : 1/2 tsp
White urad dal: 1/2 tsp 
Dry red chillies : 3 (This is spicy, I warn you but you could go slow with 1 or 2 )
Salt :  as needed 

Method:


1. In a heated pan, pour a tbsp of oil, start tempering the mustard seeds until you hear the crackling sound and then add urad dal. Fry the urad dal till golden brown and immediately add dry red chilli, asofetida, curry leaves and salt. No need to fry the red chillies too much otherwise you will end up with burnt chillies. 

2. Now, chuck in diced onions, saute them till translucent. Then gradually add in diced tomato and keep stirring till the tomato is nicely mashed. Switch of the flame.

3. Pour the fried ingredients into a liquidizer. Blend it to semi- smooth consistency by adding little water at a time. I like my chutney to have tiny bits of urad dal and mustard giving that nutty texture but you may also grind it to smooth paste. Do as per your liking.

4. Serve this chutney for thosai, idli, pakora or any fried savory snack items. 



-Abby

Thursday, 5 February 2015

SPICY Guilt free steamed dumpling (kara pidi kolukattai)


These dumplings are easy to prepare with minimal ingredients that you can always find stored in your refrigerator. Plus, no deep frying with immersed oil dripping all the way through the food that sometimes leaves us with a sudden sense of guilt and repentance. This dumpling recipe is spicy and doesn't even need any condiment to dip. For me it's a worth trying dish not because I'm posting it here on my blog. Enjoy.



From the left to right : Idli and spicy steamed dumpling (kara pidi kolukattai)



Ingredients :

Rice flour or Idiyappam flour (can get it from any Indian stores) : 1 cup
Yellow moong dal (the one without skin) : 1 tbsp (soaked for 2 hours) 
Green chillies : 4 (I f you can stand the heat)
Grated coconut : 1/4 cup
Fresh ginger :  1 1/2 inches
Asofetida or hing :  a pinch (optional)
Mustard seeds : 1/2 tsp
Cumin seeds : 1/2 tsp
Dry red chillies : 1 (remove the seeds and nick it to small pieces)
Indian sesame oil or any cooking oil : 1/2 tbsp
Boiled water : as needed
Salt : as needed

Method :

1. Grind the green chillies, grated coconut, asofetida, ginger piece and salt by adding little water to form a smooth green paste. 

2. In a heated pan, pour 1/2 tbsp of oil and start tempering the mustard seeds till they sputter and gradually add in the cumin seeds, dry red chilli. Start mixing the blended green paste with 1/8 cup of water. Let it boil for 5 minutes to get rid of the raw chilli smell.

3. After that, switch off the stove. To the same pan, add a cup of rice flour and start mixing green paste, flour and add the soaked yellow moong dal together. At this point, water may not enough so you will need to add only boiled water to form a non sticky pliable and smooth dough.

4. You may shape the dough into desirable patterns or round balls. Steam the balls in a steamer for a good 15 - 20 minutes.

5. Serve hot as it is or with chilli sauce.

-Abby

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Spicy Indian Omelette (Pure Vegetarian)

I love egg omelette but when I'm being vegetarian on certain days, this lentil based pancake or omelette makes my day perfect. It has all the nutrients and most importantly taste good without additional non-vegetarian items. It is an easy to prepare dish with aromatic herbs added as a  digestion improver and give a nice blend of flavor. Fermentation is not required when making this thick batter. But do not leave the batter outside as it has the tendency to turn sour and always keep the leftover batter in the fridge. I recommend you to use as much lentils as you want to make on that day and keep the extra soaked lentils in the fridge and you can use it again on the next day or you could even make pakora or deep fried lentil batter out of it. Always add the finely chopped onion when you are ready to make the omelette.

Spicy Indian Omelette


Ingredients :

Green Moong dal(with skin) : 1/2 cup
Raw rice : 1/4 cup
White soya bean : 1/8 cup
Toor dal (Pigeon eye dal) : 1/8 cup
Asofetida or hing : 2 pinches (optional because we already use saunf or fennel seeds)
Medium sized onions :2
Coriander leaves : 1/4 cup (Finely chopped)
Curry leaves : 4 sprigs


Ingredients to grind into smooth paste :

Dry red chillies : 6 (adjust accordingly, I prefer spicy)
Fennel seeds : 2 tsp
Cumin seeds : 1/2 tsp
Fresh turmeric :1 inch piece
Salt : as needed 

Method :

1. Soak dal and beans in a sufficient water for overnight.

2. After 9 - 10 hours, drain off excess water in a colander.

3. Grind all ingredients mentioned under 'Grind' section to smooth paste by adding enough water. Its okay if there are small particles of fennel and cumin seeds, I call that rustic way of cooking and it adds some kind texture to the omelette. Well, its an excuse for my hasty way of cooking.

4. Now, add drained beans and dal to the red paste and start pulsing the liquidizer after short run. You must add water little by little and turn the paste to coarse one. Do not make smooth paste as the omellete will be way too soft with no crispiness. The coarse paste is similar to the one when you make masala vadai. That means you can still see small bits and pieces of dals here and there. I would say 70 percent coarseness. 

5. No fermentation required here. 

6. Finely chop the onions, curry leaves and coriander leaves. Add all to the beans and dal mixture with salt if needed and 2 pinches of asofetida. 

7. Add enough water to make semi thick batter. Heat a flat pan, and take 1 small stainless steel bowl of batter and start swirling on the pan's surface forming a uniform circle which has to be slightly thin. Add Indian sesame oil or any cooking oil at the sides of the omelette and also on top of it. 

8. We are looking for nice brown crust at bottom and top of the omelette. Turn to the other side and cook till it's light brown and crispy. 

9. Unlike thosai, this omelette a.k.a pancake cannot be swirled smoothly and flawlessly because of the semi thick and coarse batter. You will have to struggle here but practice makes perfection. By adding oil to the bottom of the swirling bowl, you can swirl better.

10. Serve hot with green chilli and coconut chutney.

-Abby