Another variant of the coconut chutney is the one where ginger is used to flavour it. The earlier one that I had posted contained asafoetida. This one too goes equally well with Idli, Dosa or even Upma.
1/2 coconut grated
4 green chillies
One inch piece of ginger
1/4 tsp tamarind paste
2 sprigs curry leaves
1 tsp mustard
2 tsps coconut oil.
Grind the grated coconut, green chillies, ginger, tamarind paste and salt to a fine paste. Adjust consistency by adding water. Heat oil in a pan. Drop in the mustard. After it splutters add the curry leaves. Toss. Drop the seasoning into the chutney. Mix well and serve.
These Bhavnagari chillies are the mildly spiced ones, making them ideal for making fritters or what is known as Mirchi Bhajia. An Andhra delicacy, they are now found in every region in India, as they go well with Dal Rice or even as an evening snack with a cup of hot tea.
9 medium sized Bhavnagari chillies
150 gms Besan/Chickpea flour
50 gms rice flour
A large pinch of hing/Asafoetida
A large pinch of ajwain / Carom seeds
A pinch of haldi/ turmeric powder
Oil for frying
Wash and slit the green chillies in the centre, keeping the ends intact. Remove seeds if any gently. Mix together the Besan, rice flour, salt, haldi, hing and ajwain. Add enough water to make a thick batter. Fill some of the batter in the chillies. Heat oil in a pan. Check the temperature of the oil by dropping a spoon of batter in it. It should immediately rise to the surface. Lower the flame. Gently dip the chillies in the batter and drop them into the oil. Fry on a medium flame to a nice golden yellow. Serve hot.
Greens contain a lot of iron, hence I prefer to make them once a week. One can make a meal of these simple stir fries which are seasoned either with garlic or a pinch of asafoetida. This time round, I found a big fresh bunch of Malabar Spinach. I had a few jackfruit seeds too. Combined them to make a stir fry with lots of garlic. The aroma in the kitchen is irresistible!!
A big bunch of Malabar spinach
15 jackfruit seeds
15 cloves of garlic
3 dry red chillies
2 tbsps Coconut oil
Wash the Malabar spinach well and chop along with the tender stems. Discard the hard ones if any. Deskin the potato, wash and chop into tiny cubes. Peel the jackfruit seeds. Wash and crush them with a mallet. Pressure cook to five whistles. Do not discard the water in which the seeds have been cooked. Crush the garlic roughly. Heat oil. Add the garlic and roast to a rich golden brown. Drop in the broken red chilly bits. Toss. Add the chopped Malabar Spinach, potatoes and the cooked jackfruit seeds along with the water. Add salt as required. Cook till done.
Chibda Harshallein / Muskmelon Harshallein is a Konkani delicacy which is enjoyed during the summer months when Musk melon is in plenty. Though fruits are best eaten as is, this is one preparation I just cannot resist. You can serve it as a dessert or for for brunch as well.
1 medium sized musk melon
Coconut milk extracted from half a coconut
Jaggery as per requirement
A pinch of kesar/saffron
Poha/ flattened rice
Scoop and chop the musk melon fine. Add the coconut milk, jaggery, kesar and Cardamom powder and mix well. Refrigerate for an hour or more till it is chilled. Serve with poha.
Note: poha should not be added beforehand as it turns soggy. It is dropped into the harshallein in small quantities and eaten immediately.
One of the best ways of utilizing those over ripe bananas is by making a fragrant Banana Sheera or Kela sheera. The aroma of the banana combined with ghee/clarified butter makes this sheera a one of its kind. It needs no additional condiments like Cardamom or saffron to enhance its taste.
200 gms Rava/Semolina
200 gms sugar
2 elaichi Bananas
600 ml milk
100 ml water
100 gms ghee/ clarified butter
A handful of Cashew nuts and Kishmish
Roast the Rava in 5 tbsps of ghee till it turns to a golden brown and gives its aroma. Roast the cashews and kishmish in a little ghee to a golden brown. Boil the milk and water together and pour it into the roasted rava. Cook till done. Slice the banana finely and add it to the Sheera. Keep roasting till the bananas get mashed. Add the sugar and keep stirring till it starts leaving the sides of the pan. Add the remaining ghee and the roasted Cashew and raisins. Mix well. Serve hot.
This is the most popular stir fry or upkari as it is called in Konkani cuisine. A must on occasions, get togethers and weddings. Tender Cashew is a delicacy and when in season, a variety of dishes are made. Posting a combination of Ivy gourd and Tender Cashew today.
250 gms Ivygourd
250 gms Tender Cashew
6 dried red chillies broken into bits
3 tbsps coconut oil
1 tbsp mustard
A large pinch of hing/asafoetida
Grated coconut for garnish
Wash and slice the Ivygourd lengthwise. Soak the tender Cashew for a couple of hours in warm water and deskin them. Wash thoroughly. Heat oil. Add the mustard. After it splutters add the broken red chilly bits and toss. Add the tender Cashew, two glasses of water and salt. When half done add the sliced Ivygourd. Cook till done. Add the hing and grated coconut. Heat well. Serve with Rice and dal or with Poori.
Smoothies are not only a quick and easy way of taking care of those hunger pangs, but are also healthy and delicious. I usually have one mid afternoon when it’s too hot for that cup of tea or coffee. Posting a Banana Smoothie today.
4 elaichi /small variety Bananas
1 litre thick curd/Yoghurt
3 tbsps honey
Sugar as required / I use Sugar free
A few ice cubes
Chop the Bananas into tiny pieces and blend them along with sugar, curds, honey and a few ice cubes. Serve with sliced Banana.
A variety of Sambhar can be made by using a variety of vegetables. No two Sambhars taste the same because of the distinctive flavour of the vegetables used. I have posted an Okra and, a mixed Vegetable Sambhar too earlier. Posting a Sambhar which I made using only three vegetables that I had in my fridge. It turned out delicious!
125 gms toor dal/ split Pigeon peas
2 medium sized potatoes
1 medium sized carrot
2 large onions
3 tsps sambhar powder
1 heaped tsp tamarind paste
Kidney bean sized piece of hing/asafoetida powdered fine
2 tbsps ghee/clarified butter
4 sprigs curry leaves
1 tsp mustard
Chop the vegetables into size of your choice and boil them with salt and sambhar powder till done. Pressure cook the split Pigeon peas to three whistles. Churn well. Add the churned dal, tamarind paste and vegetables and boil well.
Heat the ghee. Add a tsp of mustard and after it splutters add the hing. Add 4 sprigs curry leaves. Toss and drop the seasoning into the Sambhar. Switch off and keep aside for the flavours to infuse for about 15 minutes . Add a tsp of ghee before serving.
Lassi thougha Punjabi delicacy, is now popular in even the remotest parts of India. It is nothing but Yoghurt churned and sweetened with sugar or with salt. Fruit Lassi in a variety of flavours too is available but my most favourite is the Kesar Elaichi Lassi that is the Sweet Lassi flavoured with Saffron and Cardamom and garnished with Pistachios. The traditional Rajasthani churner is a gift from a very dear friend Ramesh Chittal.
1 litre thick curd/Yoghurt
15 tsps sugar
9 Cardamom pods
A large pinch of Saffron
12 Pistachios shelled and slivered.
Churn the curds well. Powder the sugar, saffron and Cardamom and tip it into the churned yoghurt. Mix well. Pour in tall glasses or even tiny earthenware and serve chilled garnished with pistachios.
The aroma of Chapati or Roti being roasted with ghee and sprinkled with sugar is a fond childhood memory. Dieting was unheard of, ghee and sugar used liberally, and the sweet aroma clung to the house like a dear friend. Thought of posting it today as I was feeling particularly nostalgic about my childhood as I went through the old photographs.
300 gms wheat flour
A tsp of salt
200 ml hot water
Heat the water enough to handle it. Add the salt, flour and oil and bind a soft dough. Cover it and keep it aside for 15 mnts. The hot water softens the dough. Knead it well for a couple of minutes. Make 18 balls. Flatten them. Dust them with flour and roll into six inch diameter disc’s. Heat a skillet. Apply a tsp of ghee. Place the rolled Roti over it. Roast till small bubbles start appearing. Drizzle a tsp of ghee on the uncooked side and flip the Roti. Roast till the Roti turns a golden brown, gently flipping it all the while to see that it is roasted evenly on both sides. Remove. Sprinkle with sugar and serve hot.