Malli poo/ Mallige idli

Malli poo refers to the beautiful, fragrant, white jasmine flower in Tamil and Mallige in Kannada. The idli gets it’s name because of the softness and it’s whiteness. Sago pearls and beaten rice are what make this idli soft and white.

Ingredients:

250 gms split black gram/ Urad dal

500 gms Idli rava/ rice rava

100 gms Sago pearls/ sabudana

100 gms beaten rice/ Poha

1/2 tsp Fenugreek seeds/ Methi

Salt

Method:

Wash and soak the urad dal. Soak the methi seeds, sabudana and poha separately. All the three items are soaked for about four to five hours. Grind the urad dal to a smooth fluffy batter in the wet grinder for twenty minutes. If using the mixer ,cut down on the rice rava by half. Whisk well to incorporate air into the batter. The advantage of grinding in a wet grinder is that not only does the urad dal increase in volume but it also becomes extremely fluffy. Grind the sabudana, methi and poha in the mixer jar and tip it into the grinder. Grind for a further ten minutes so that the batter and the sago, poha ,methi mixture are mixed well. Tip the batter in a vessel. Wash the idli rava, drain, squeeze out the water and drop it into the batter. Add salt, mix well and allow to ferment for 12 hours. Mix the batter with a light hand. Grease the idli moulds with oil or ghee. Pour the batter into them and steam for ten minutes. Remove and allow to cool for five minutes. De mould and serve with chutney and sambhar. Recipe links to both Sambhar and chutney given below.

https://vinayasculinarydelights.com/coriander-leaves-chutney-2/

https://vinayasculinarydelights.com/mixed-vegetable-sambhar/

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Vermicelli Pulao

An easy to prepare, filling and delicious Pulao which can be served at breakfast or lunch. Ready in just fifteen minutes and is a real saviour when having guests. Link to the ‘All purpose chutney’ used in the pulao is given below.

https://vinayasculinarydelights.com/all-purpose-chutney-recipe/

Ingredients:

1 cup vermicelli

1.5 cups of boiling water

2 tsps ghee/ clarified butter for roasting the vermicelli

A mixture of 2tbsps ghee and 3tbsps oil for seasoning.

1 small capsicum chopped

1 small carrot chopped

1 large onion chopped fine

A fistful of peas

4 tbsps of all purpose chutney

2 inch piece of cinnamon

4 cloves

1 bay leaf

4 cardamom

1 tsp Biryani masala

1/2 tsp lemon juice

2tsps finely chopped coriander leaves

Salt

Method:

Roast the Vermecilli in ghee to a golden brown. Keep aside. Heat the ghee and oil mixture in a pan. Drop in the cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and bay leaf. After it splutters drop in the onions, carrots and peas. Add salt and saute till the onion turns translucent. Add the chopped capsicum and the ‘All purpose chutney’ and continue to saute for a couple of minutes. Add the Biryani masala and saute for a minute. Pour in the boiling water and bring the mixture to a boil. Drop the roasted Vermecilli and once it starts boiling lower heat cover and cook for around seven to eight minutes. Garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves and lemon juice. Mix well and serve hot.

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Abu Bakar

The name is very deceptive, but this long forgotten Konkani recipe used to be extremely popular about seven decades ago. It was prepared when people fasted as it contains no cereals. It is normally accompanied by fresh home made butter.

Ingredients:

250 gms urad dal/ split black gram

8 green chillies

2 inch piece of ginger

A kidney bean sized piece of Hing/ asafoetida

Salt

Oil to roast.

Method:

Wash and soak the urad dal for five hours. Grind to a smooth and fluffy batter in the wet grinder. This may take about twenty five to thirty minutes. Tip the batter into a vessel, add salt, mix thoroughly and allow to ferment overnight…. The next morning crush the green chillies, ginger and asafoetida and add it to the batter. Mix well. Heat a tava/ skillet. Pour a ladleful of batter, drizzle with oil (preferably coconut oil) and cover and roast on a medium to low flame. Flip. Roast on the other side too. Serve hot with home made butter.

Note:

You can make Abu Bakar without fermenting the batter as well.. Just grind, add the chilly, ginger and asafoetida mixture and make them.

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Bittergourd subzi

You can find any number of recipes of preparations of Bittergourd on this website. I had totally forgotten to upload this one which the children loved when they were young. My son who is still working from home, reminded me about it today and I realised that I had not made it ever since the children have left home. This subzi is not just easy to make but also goes well with both chapati and dal rice. I enjoy eating it with curd rice as well.

Ingredients:

2 medium sized Bittergourd cut into thin slices

2 tomatoes chopped fine

2 medium sized onions sliced thinly

1 tbsp Sambhar powder

1 tbsp Kashmiri Lal chilly powder

Salt

Oil to fry the bittergourd.

Method:

Sprinkle a little salt on the bittergourd. Mix and immediately fry in hot oil till crisp. Those who want to tone down the bitterness can wait for the bittergourd to release water. Squeeze and then fry. I prefer not to wait as most vitamins are lost if the bittergourd is squeezed.

Heat the oil in which you have fried the bittergourd and drop in the sliced onions. Roast till translucent. Add salt and the chilly powder. Toss and drop in the tomatoes. Roast on a gentle flame till the tomatoes start releasing water. Add the Sambhar masala and keep roasting till the tomatoes turn mushy. Drop in the fried Bittergourd pieces, mix well , cover and cook for a couple of minutes. Switch off. Set aside for about fifteen minutes to allow the flavours to infuse. Serve hot.

Note: Use oil just enough to cover the bittergourd while frying to prevent wastage. The remaining oil can be used while seasoning the subzi.

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Rava appe

Appe can be made from a batter of urad dal and rice, urad dal and rava/ semolina or even just urad dal. Urad dal is split black gram which is used in most of the breakfast items in South India. Making of appe the above mentioned way includes soaking, grinding and fermenting which takes roughly around 16 hours. Fermented food is high in B complexes so highly nutritive.

What does one do when one is running short of time or wants to churn out a quick breakfast? Make instant ones using curds/ yoghurt to prepare the batter. You can use veggies of your choice to enhance the flavour and to get children to eat their veggies. Though appes are traditionally served with a chutney my family loves to eat them with fresh home made butter.

Ingredients:

500 gms rava/ semolina

1 cup/ 250 ml curds

1 large onion

1/2 of a bell pepper

A large fistful of boiled sweet corn

7 green chillies

2 inch piece of ginger

3 tbsps finely chopped coriander leaves

A large pinch of baking soda

Salt.

Seasoning:

1 tbsp oil

1 tsp mustard

2 sprigs curry leaves roughly chopped.

Method:

Chop the onion, bell pepper and coriander leaves fine. Grind the green chillies and ginger to a coarse paste. Tip the chopped vegetables, the ginger green chilly paste along with the sweet corn, rava, soda and curd into a bowl. Mix well adding a little water at a time to make a batter of flowing consistency. Heat oil in a pan. Add the mustard. Once it crackles drop in the curry leaves. Toss and drop the seasoning into the batter. Mix, cover and keep aside for ten minutes. You will notice that the rava has absorbed the water and is of dropping consistency. Add salt and mix well. Heat the appe pan. Brush it with oil. Pour the batter into each mould and drizzle with oil. Cover and roast on a medium flame till you see the appe leaving the sides. Flip and roast on the other side as well. Serve hot with chutney of your choice.

A variety of chutneys can be found in this website.

https://vinayasculinarydelights.com/chutneys/

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Mango curry-2

This is the second variety of mango curry also known as Ambya upkari in my mother tongue Konkani. Here pepper is used to spice the dish instead of the green chillies that were used in the earlier mango curry posted in this website. A special variety of mango called Ambya ghonta which is sweet and sour is used to make this curry. If unavailable one may use any small variety of sweet mango and add some tamarind pulp for tanginess.

Ingredients:

1 kg small mangoes ( around nine or ten)

150 gms jaggery

Salt

1 tbsp heaped pepper powder

Seasoning:

1 tbsp ghee/ clarified butter

1 tbsp mustard seeds

1 heaped tsp urad dal/ split black gram

Method:

Wash the mangoes well and de skin them. Tip them into a vessel. Take the peel in a large bowl. Add about two glasses of water and rub them well, changing the water thus thrice till all the pulp from the peel is extracted. Tip the water each time into the vessel containing the mangoes. Puree two of the mangoes and add it into the vessel. This is to thicken the curry. Add the jaggery, salt and pepper and mix well. Bring the curry to a roaring boil. Lower flame and simmer for a couple of minutes to allow the mangoes to infuse the flavours. Heat the ghee in a pan. Drop in the urad dal and as it turns golden yellow, drop in the mustard. Allow it to crackle. Pour this seasoning into the curry. Mix well, cover and keep aside for about fifteen minutes before serving .

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Tomato saar – 4

This was an experiment which turned out to be delicious. I was left with about four glasses of tomato juice and wanted to finish it off as soon as possible. I was wondering if I should make a soup and then I remembered that there was a half a tetra pack unused coconut milk lying in the freezer. I decided to make a Saaru which turned out to be simply amazing.

Ingredients:

8 tomatoes blended to a puree

Sugar, salt, pepper powder and a pinch of chaat masala.

100 ml coconut milk

2 tbsps Ghee/ clarified butter

12 cloves of garlic crushed

1 heaped tsp chilly powder

3 tbsps finely chopped coriander leaves

Method:

Blend the tomatoes in a mixer and strain the puree. Tip it into a pan and add the sugar, salt, chilly powder, pepper and chaat masala. Add water as required. The consistency should be neither thick nor watery. Bring it to a boil and allow to simmer for about five minutes. Heat the ghee in a pan and drop in the crushed garlic. Roast till the garlic turns a deep brown. Pour the seasoning into the boiling Saaru and simmer it for another five minutes. Drop in the coconut milk and coriander leaves. Keep stirring for a minute. Switch off and serve hot.

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Mixed vegetable Sagu

This mixed vegetable Sagu is a speciality of Mysuru, a city in Karnataka and home to the elephants and vast stretches of sandalwood forests. Served with Rava idli, poori or sett dosa, it is a fragrant and nutritious combo with all the above mentioned dishes.

Ingredients:

One bowl each of the following vegetables

French beans chopped fine

Carrot chopped fine

Potatoes chopped fine

Peas

One large onion

Half a bowl of grated coconut

1 tbsp roasted gram dal ( Daalia/ Purani/ Hurakadle)

A large pinch of turmeric powder

6 green chillies

5 cloves of garlic

2 inch piece of ginger

6 pepper corns

2 inch piece of cinnamon

4 cloves

1 cardamom

1 tbsp coriander seeds

1/2 tsp cumin seeds

A small bunch of coriander leaves

1 tomato

Salt

3 tbsps oil

1 large Bay leaf

Procedure:

Cook the chopped vegetables in salted water till done. Keep aside. Grind the coconut, onions, tomato, green chillies, roasted gram dal, pepper corns, coriander leaves, coriander and cumin seeds, turmeric powder, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, ginger and garlic to a smooth paste. Heat oil in a pan. Drop in the bay leaf. Toss and add the ground paste. Roast on a low flame till it gives its aroma and the raw smell disappears. Add the cooked vegetables along with the water and bring to a boil. Cook on a slow flame for ten minutes. Serve hot.

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Ghee Rice

Ghee rice is a popular rice preparation prepared in the South of India and is accompanied by a korma or a spicy curry and raita. It is sans spice though one can add some ginger garlic paste for that slight punch. I have stuck to the original and authentic way of making it.

Ingredients:

250 gms Basmati rice

2 inch piece of Cinnamon

5 cloves

3 cardamom

1 star fennel

1 Bay leaf

10 cashews halved

2 medium sized onions finely chopped

Salt

5 tbsps Ghee/ clarified butter

500 ml boiling water.

Method:

Wash and soak the rice for about twenty minutes. Drain and keep aside. Heat ghee in a pan. Add the whole spices and allow to splutter. Drop in the cashewnuts and roast to a golden brown. Drop in the onions and roast till translucent. Add the drained rice and roast for a couple of minutes. Pour in boiling water and allow it to come to a roaring boil. Cover and cook on a gentle flame till the water has been absorbed and the rice is cooked and fluffy. Uncover and mix with a light hand with a fork. Serve it hot with korma or any spicy curry of your choice. Recipe link to the korma is given below.

Kashmiri Mix Vegetable/ Korma Recipe

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Bikkanda Tikshe midshe/ Jackfruit seed spicy curry.

When Jackruit is in season, the seeds are washed and stored to make a variety of dishes. These seeds are usually pressure cooked and added to other vegetables or lentils. They can also be roasted and served sprinkled with salt. Today’s dish is a slightly laborious one as it involves scraping off the skin of the seeds, but it’s well worth it as the dish is absolutely delicious.

Ingredients:

250 gms Jackfruit seeds

2 heaped tbsps Kashmiri chilly powder

1 heaped tsp tamarind paste

Salt

For the tempering:

1 tbsp coconut oil

1 tsp mustard

1 tsp Hing/ asafoetida powder

1 tsp coconut oil to garnish.

Method:

Remove the white dry skin of the seeds. Wash and soak the seeds overnight. The next day scrape off the brown outer cover and slice them into long strips. Wash thoroughly and pressure cook with salt in around two glasses (500ml) of water. It may take three to four whistles of the pressure cooker as it all depends on the variety of seeds. Allow the pressure to release naturally. Add the chilly powder and tamarind paste. Mash a few of the cooked seeds and tip them into the curry. This acts as a thickener. Bring to a boil. Heat the oil in a pan. Drop in the mustard seeds. After they crackle add the Hing. Toss. Pour the seasoning into the curry. Boil for a minute. Switch off and garnish with a tsp of coconut oil. Serve with Dal rice or plain curd rice.

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