August 29, 2019

Raw Rice Idli | Pachai Arisi Idli


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For idlis , we generally use parboiled rice/puzhungal Arisi (ukkda chawal) or Idli rice or Idli Sooji/Rava  along with Udad dhall and fenugreek seeds .
On festive occasions like Ganesh Chaturthi, Varalakshmi Vratham or Avani Avittam (Upakarma) , generally boiled rice is avoided for making idlis as we make it as an offering to the Lord .
As the name suggests , parboiled rice means the rice is semi boiled before and anything that has been cooked before is not offered to the lord as prasad. Prasad or offerings have to be made fresh is what the general norm is.
The process of making idli is the same , just that the soaking time for rice is a little longer as it is raw and needs more time to soften before you can grind it.
Wet grinder will be the best option to grind the batter for the idlis to turn out soft, if no other option, blender or mixie can also be used.

Preparation Time : 4 hrs
Fermentation Time : 8-12 hrs
Cooking Time :  15-20 mins for 12-16 idlis
Complexity  : Medium


Recipe Courtesy  : Mrs Bageerathy Ramakrishnan - a dear friend of mine .

Ingredients
2 cups raw rice (sona masuri or any other except Basmati)
1 cup whole udad dhall
1 tsp methi seeds /fenugreek

Method

  • Wash the rice 3-4 times and then soak it in enough water for 4 hrs .
  • 1hr after soaking the rice, wash the udad dhall multiple times until you get a clear water and soak it with methi seeds for 3 hrs. 
  • Rice and dhall have to be soaked separately. 
  • Drain the water from the udad dhall and the  start grinding it in a wet grinder by sprinkling water little by little .
  • The batter will double up and appear fluffy after about 20 - 25 mins. 
  • At this stage , take out the batter and keep it in a large vessel .
  • Now , drain the water from the rice and start grinding it by adding a cup of water for 20 mins or till it appears smooth . It should not be very coarse or rough. 
  • Remove the rice batter from the grinder and mix it well with the udad dhall batter and keep it for fermenting in a warm place. 
  • Fermentation can take place anywhere between 8 to 12 hrs depending on the weather conditions. 
  • Once, fermented, mix the batter well , add salt and you are  now ready to make idlis .
  • Grease the idli plates and ready the idli pot or steamer with 2 glasses of water. 
  • Pour the batter in the idli plate , place it in the steamer and steam it for 12-15 mins.
  • Unmould it and offer to the lord as prasad .


Refer to the video link below for a detailed demonstration of how to grind regular idli batter .

The  same method is used for Raw rice idli except for the change in ingredients. Instead of parboiled or idli rice we use only Raw rice. 


August 26, 2019

Black Channa Sundal | Kondakadalai Sundal


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Sundal is variety of South Indian stir fry made out of  legumes like chick peas ,groundnut , dried peas , lobia/karamani etc.
Sundal is made as an offering to the Lord on auspicious occasions like Ganesh Chaturthi,Navratri ,Satyanarayan Pooja etc.

Today's sundal recipe is a favorite of Lord Ganesha and it is always offered to him as Prasad on Ganesh Chaturthi and SankataHara Chaturthi which occurs once a month - 4th day after the Full Moon Day.

Black Channa or karuppu Konda kadalai as it is called in Tamil is very rich in protein and dietary fiber.

Preparation Time : 8-10 hrs
Cooking Time : 30 mins
Serves: 4-5
Complexity: simple


Ingredients
150 gms black channa / karuppu kondakadalai
3-4 tablespoons fresh grated coconut
2 green chillies
Few curry leaves
1 tsp mustard seeds
Pinch of asafoetida
Salt as needed

Method

  • Wash and soak the chickpeas overnight or for 8-10 hrs .
  • Discard the soaked water , rinse it once and pressure cook with a little salt until it is soft and well cooked .( 5 whistles on medium flame ) 
  • If you find it uncooked you can pressure cook for another 2 or 3 whistles. 
  • Strain the water and keep the chickpeas aside.  The strained water can be used in dhall, sambar or rasam etc.
  • In a small blender, take the coconut, green chillies, curry leaves and give it a quick whip . No need to add water . 
  • In a kadai, heat the oil and splutter the mustard seeds along with asafoetida. 
  • Add in the coconut masala and give it a quick stir and add a little salt. 
  • Mix the boiled chick peas with the coconut mixture , sprinkle a little water and keep covered for 2-3 mins .
  • This step ensures that the flavor of coconut masala mixes well with the chickpeas. 
  • Turn off the stove and garnish with corriander leaves if you like. 
  • Offer to the lord as prasad and then distribute among family and friends. 


The other sundal varieties on my blog

Karamani Sundal (Lobia) 
Channa dhall sundal
Verkadalai Sundal (Peanut)

August 18, 2019

Butter Murukku | Benne Murukku


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Butter (Benne) Murukku is the
south indian version of the chakli made by Gujaratis or Maharashtrians . It is very simple and easy to make with the ingredients  available in our pantry. There can be various proportions to the ingredients used in making this murukku , my recipe uses rice flour, besan(gramflour/kadalai maav) and unsalted butter.
The slightly extra quantity of butter is what gives the soft crunch to these murukku.
You will need a chakli maker or a murukku press to prepare these crunchy bites .

Preparation Time : 10 mins
Frying Time : 20 mins
Complexity  : medium


Ingredients
1 cup rice flour (100 gms)
2 tablespoon besan
2 tablespoons unsalted butter (room temperature)
Salt as needed
1 tsp jeera
1 tsp white sesame /til/ellu (optional)
Water to knead
Oil to fry

Method
In a wide mixing bowl , add the rice flour , gram flour ,salt , cumin and mix it well .


Now add the butter and rub it well into the dry ingredients to form a crumbly mixture.




Slowly add water little by little and form a nice soft and pliable dough.


Grease the murukku press from the inside and fill it with a handful of this dough .


Heat the oil , drop a small piece of dough and it should sizzle up immediately.  This indicates that the oil is perfectly heated up .

Now , press the murukku maker over the oil carefully and fry the murukku /chakli.
Stir the murukku in the oil carefully and take it out once the hissing sound stops .

Note:
Keep  the oil temperature constant by  adjusting the flame of the gas . Too much heat will make the murukku dark from outside while less heat will keep it uncooked from within.

A little red chilli powder can also be added to the dough if you want the murukku to be a little spicy


August 16, 2019

Yam / Suran / Sennaikizhangu Roast Curry


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Yam / Suran / Sennaikizhangu is probably one of the ugly looking root  vegetables but it is packed with a lot of nutritional value .Yam has a good source of dietary fiber, vit C , vit B6 along with manganese and potassium .  The vegetable is a little difficult to handle as it has a thick skin layer which appears like a  bark of a tree and is generally coated with mud . You need a sharp knife to chop that off and then the vegetable can be cut into slices or diced as per recipe.
Today's recipe is my maternal grandma's signature recipe which was passed on to my mom and then now I have taken to it . Unfortunately I have not tasted the version  made by my grandma , but have eaten the preparation by mom N number of times .  The final product has  a burst of flavors in your mouth due to the spicy and tangy marination used to coat the yam cubes .

Preparation time: 20 mins
Cooking Time : 20 mins
Complexity  : simple


Ingredients
250 gms yam / suran/ sennai
1 tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp rasam powder
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 tablespoon thick tamarind extract
1 tsp jaggery powder
Salt as needed
Asafoetida / hing as needed
1 tablespoon cooking oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
Few curry leaves .

Method

  • Chop the hard skin off the yam and wash it thoroughly. 
  • Grease your palms and cut the yam into small cubes and wash them well . ( greasing with coconut oil prevents itching )
  • Drain the water and in a mixing bowl , add salt , turmeric, rasam powder, chilli powder and the tamarind extract and toss the yam cubes well until these spices coat each cube well . Let it rest for 10 mins. 

  • In a frying pan (preferably nonstick) , heat the oil and splutter the mustard seeds along with curry leaves and asafoetida.  
  • Add this marinated yam cubes in the oil and toss it well . 
  • Sprinkle some water and keep covered for about 8-10 mins . Open the lid occasionally and stir it.  

  • Once it is 3/4th done , add the jaggery powder and toss it again with a spoon of oil and cook until they turn crisp and crunchy. 
  • Turn off the stove and serve hot with rice and sambar or rice and kootu . 

August 13, 2019

Oats Coconut Ladoo - Vegan Dessert under 3 mins (Microwave recipe)


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Another quick ,but healthy Vegan dessert / sweet using oats , coconut and jaggery . A healthy after school sweet for kids to satisfy their sudden sweet tooth . Jaggery is rich in iron and helps fight anaemia and oats being rich in fibre helps in digestion and keeping the digestive track healthy .
The natural oil from the coconut helps in binding the ladoo and we need not add any extra ghee like we do for the normal ladoos.

Preparation Time : 10 mins
Cooking Time : 3-4 mins
Makes : 10-12 ladoos
Complexity : Simple


Ingredients
1 cup fresh grated coconut
3/4 cup roasted rolled oats
3/4 cup jaggery powdered . (I have used organic jaggery powder)
1 tsp cardamom powder
roughly chopped badam & cashews
1/4 tsp coconut oil to grease the palms

Method


  • In a microwave safe container , mix the jaggery powder , coocnut , roasted oats and m/w it for 2 mins.
  • Take it out from the oven, mix it with a spoon, add the chopped nuts , cardamom powder ; mix and microwave for 1 min again.
  • Take it out and let it cool for 2-3 mins.
  • Mix it again with a spoon, grease your palms with coconut oil and make ladoos or balls.
  • Enjoy it immediately or you can refrigerate and enjoy it chilled as well,

Note
You can roll the ladooos over dessicated coconut if you like. I personally don't like to mix the flavor of fresh coconut and dessicated coconut ,hence avoided it.

August 12, 2019

Coconut Burfi / Thenga Burfi - Vegan Sweet


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I am actually surprised as to how I have not blogged this very simple,yet a very tasty sweet in my blog :-(

Coconut Burfi or Thengai Burfi is very easy to make and almost a no fail sweet

This was the first sweet I learnt to make all by myself a few years ago and it has been a breeze from then .

Generally, there is always some hesitation especially for beginners to work with sugar syrup and making burfis.  That is because if you dont get the consistency of the sugar syrup right , the entire process can turn into a big time flop show.

Traditionally if we go to make we need to check for 1 string consistency and then add the coconut gratings to prepare, but this a quick but no fail recipe and will not let you down.

Preparation Time : 30 mins
Cooking Time : 20 mins
Complexity  : medium 



Ingredients 
1 medium sized coconut 
Sugar as needed 
2 tsp fresh cardamom powder 
1 tsp coconut oil for greasing 
(Ghee can be used if not Vegan)



Method 
  • Break the coconut into 2 halves and grate them such that you get only the white portion of the coconut. 
  • Dont grate it very deep else the brown portion also will get mixed giving the burfis slightly brown color . 
  • You can scrape them left over part of the coconut later to use it for cooking.In that way the coconut won't be wasted.
  • Transfer the grated coconut to a container and take sugar in equal measure or 3/4th .
  • (I.e if the grated coconut measures 2 cups take 1 .75 cups of sugar )
  • In a thick bottomed pan , add the sugar, coconut  and cardamom powder and on medium flame ,let the sugar melt and blend with the coconut. 
  • Keep stirring occasionally to prevent burning or sticking to the pan.
  • After about 10 mins or so the mixture will appear frothy from the sides and will bubble in center. 
  • Now , keep stirring and scraping the mixture from the sides and continue cooking until it forms a nice mass and leaves the sides of the pan .
  • Turn off at the stage and immediately transfer to a greased plate and level it quickly .
  • Cut squares or diamonds using a knife when the mixture is warm and allow it to set for a while.  Making the mark when warm is important. Otherwise the burfi will crumble when you try to cut after it is cooled .
  • Once cooled , remove the pieces carefully from the plate and then transfer to an airtight box and store it .