Sep 30, 2014

Rava Dhokla

An incredible recipe from Gujrat made with a jiffy mix of semolina(rava), yogurt, green chilies, ginger and turmeric. I found this recipe online, but I have made few variations to this recipe by adding ginger and turmeric. Adding ginger to this recipe boosted the flavors and the light yellow color from turmeric make this dhokla very appealing.


For the batter-
1 cup Upma rava (semolina)
1 cup Yogurt, beaten
1/4 cup Water
1/2 tsp Green chili paste
1/2 tsp Ginger paste
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Fruit salt

For seasoning-
3 tsp oil
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
Few sprigs of Cilantro, finely chopped
Few sprigs of Curry leaves


  • Roast rava on a flat pan for 2-3 minutes. Let it cool
  • Mix together rava, yogurt, water, green chili paste, ginger paste, turmeric powder, salt and fruit salt. Set aside for 10 minutes until rava absorbs all the moisture from yogurt
  • Pour the batter on a greased pan and steam for 12 minutes
  • Let it cool for 2 minutes. Dip knife in cold water and cut the dhokla 
  • In a pan, heat oil. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, cilantro and curry leaves. When it starts to sizzle, pour the seasoning on dhokla
  • Serve hot

Jun 24, 2014

Kovil Sakkarai Pongal

Sakkarai pongal is the original sweet pongal recipe taught to me by my Father-in-law. The pongal is absolutely divine recipe served specially as temple prasadam. This religious recipe just melts in your mouth.  The edible camphor and cardamon boosts flavors and the dry fruits adds crunch in every bite.


1 cup Rice (sonamasoori)
5 cups Water
1 1/4 cup Jaggery, powdered/grated
5 Cardamom, powdered
1/4  Ghee
8-10 Cashewnuts
Handful Raisins
Pinch of edible camphor


  • Soak rice in water for 10-15 minutes
  • Boil water in a pot. When water begins to boil, add rice. Cook rice until it is completely cooked with mashed rice consistency
  • To this add jaggery and cardamom. Stir until it is completely melted about 10 minutes. Set aside 
  • In a separate pan, heat ghee. Add cashew nuts and roast until it is light brown. Add raisins and roast until raisins puffs up. Then transfer it to the cooked rice
  • Add camphor and mix well
  • Serve hot

Jun 19, 2014

Egg Puff

Enjoy this mini appetizer made in just 30 minutes. This mini appetizer is  made from puff pastry and hard boiled eggs with onion filling. Yummy!!


4 Hard boiled eggs, halved
8 Pastry shells
1 Egg white

For onion filling:
1 Medium sized onion, diced
2 Garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp Chili powder
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
1/2 tsp Coriander powder
1/4 tsp Garam masala
4 tsp Oil


  • For onion filling-
    • Heat oil in a pan. Add garlic and onions. Saute on medium heat until it turns light brown. Reduce the heat, then  add chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder and garam masala. Add 2 tsp of water to avoid spices getting burnt
  • Preheat oven at 400 F
  • Place pastry shells on a greased tray. Apply egg white on each pastry shell. Top each pastry shell with a spoon of spiced caramelized onions and hard boiled egg. Place in oven at 375 F for 20 minutes. 
  • Serve hot 

Jun 10, 2014

Nippattu | Thattai

Nippattu is a spicy and crunchy snack from South Indian cuisine.  This tea time snack is made from rice flour, peanuts, Bengal gram and chilies. 

The secret to this recipe is using thin and dry cotton cloth to flatten the dough. By using cloth; it absorbs excess water, reduces cooking time and the end product turns out to be extremely crispy. 


3 cups Rice flour
3/4 cup Peanuts
1/2 cup Dalia (roasted channa)
Handful of Green chilies
1 cups Bengal gram, soak in water for 3hours
1/4 tsp Asafoetida (hing)
1/2 cup Hot oil
Oil for frying


  • Roast rice flour in a pan for 5 minutes sauteing frequently without burning flour. Set aside
  • Roast peanuts until brown. After it cools, remove the skin by rubbing peanuts between your palm. Then make a coarse powder of peanuts
  • Make smooth paste of green chili by adding very little water
  • Drain excess water from Bengal gram 
  • Make smooth powder of Roasted channa (dalia)
  • Mix together roasted rice flour, powdered peanuts, green chili paste, soaked Bengal gram and season it with salt. Add hot oil and mix again
  • Make a smooth and stiff dough by adding water. Divide the dough into 1 inch balls. Take a ball of dough and flatten it on a dry cloth. You can apply on your fingers to flatten the dough for non sticking purpose

  • Heat oil for deep frying. When oil is ready for frying, gently drop the flattened dough  in oil. Fry evenly on both the sides until it stops bubbling
  • Use an absorbent paper to drain excess oil
  • After it cools, store in an air tight container which can last to 2-3 weeks

May 19, 2014

Onion-Tomato Upma

Upma is a hot South Indian breakfast and tiffin food. Cracked wheat is seasoned with Indian condiments, onions and tomatoes. Its a simple recipe made effortlessly.

I like keep upma recipe very simple. My brother who likes upma often complained that he fails to achieve perfection with right consistency either its too soggy or it is too dry. The secret of upma lies in its moistness and cracked wheat separated from one another. With right proportion of water and few drops lemon juice this consistency can be achieved.


3 cups Cracked wheat
2 Onions, diced
1 Ripened Tomato, diced
1 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tsp Cumin seeds
1 tsp Bengal gram
8-10 Curry leaves
1 tsp Grated ginger
5-6 Green Chilies, cut lengthwise
5 cups of water
Juice of 1/2 Lemon
6 tsp Oil


  • Roast cracked wheat on a preheated pan over medium heat. When cracked wheat starts to turn light brown, turn off the heat and set aside
  • Heat oil in a large pot. To this add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, Bengal gram and curry leaves. 
  • When it starts to sizzle, add green chilies, onions and ginger. Saute until onions turn transparent
  • Then add tomatoes and saute for a minute (do not over cook tomatoes)
  • Add water, lemon juice and season it with salt. When it starts to simmer, lower the flame and slowly add cracked wheat stirring in one direction without forming lumps. Cover the pot and cook in low heat for 3-4 minutes 
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve hot

May 14, 2014

Breaded Chicken Manchurian

A delicious Indo-Chinese recipe made from Chinese ingredients. This recipe is a great appetizer to start off. The only difference from this recipe to the traditional machurian recipe is the breaded chicken. 

 I had couple of breaded chicken left out and wanted to infuse Chinese sauces. So I settled with  manchurian  influenced from eastern and western ingredients making it an excellent finger food. 


2 Breaded Chicken fillets
1 Onion, thinly sliced
1 Green bell pepper, thinly sliced
2 cloves of Garlic, minced
2 green Chilies, finely chopped
1 tsp Dark Soy sauce
2 tsp Red Chili sauce
4 tsp Ketchup
5 tsp Water
Pinch of Aginomoto


  • Bake breaded chicken in oven for 15- 20 minutes at 250 F. After it cools, chop them into cubes
  • Heat oil in a pan. Add garlic, green chilies, onions and bell pepper. Stir fry for 2 minutes
  • Then add cooked breaded chicken
  • In a bowl, mix together soy sauce, chili sauce, ketchup and water. Pour the sauce over chicken
  • Add aginomoto and salt. Mix together on high heat for 2 minutes
  • Serve hot

Kathirikai Vattal Kuzhambu

Kathirikai Vattal Kuzhambu is a traditional tamil curry made from Kathirikai Vattal. This curry has tangy and spicy flavors of tamarind and coriander-chili powder. Kathirikai Vattal is made from brinjals which are soaked in warm water and then mixed in salt dried under sun until it is crispy. 

This is a versatile curry recipe with steamed rice.


1 cup Kathirikai Vattal
1 Onion, paste
3 cloves of Garlic, paste
1 Tomato, paste
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
1/2 tsp Coriander-chili powder
1/2 cup Tamarind pulp
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
4 tsp Oil

For spice powder
2 tsp Bengal gram
1 tsp Pepper


  • Dry roast bengal gram and pepper until Bengal gram turns light brown color. After it cools, make a smooth powder

  • Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, onion and garlic paste. Cook for 5 minutes. Then add Kathirikai Vattal. Cook for another 2-3 minutes
  • Add turmeric powder, coriander-chili powder, spice powder , tamarind pulp and tomato paste. Add water to adjust thickness of curry about 1 cup

  • Bring it boil and season it with salt
  • Serve hot with steamed rice

May 13, 2014

Mysore Masala Dosa

Mysore Masala Dosa !! An iconic Karnataka recipe predominant in Bangalore and Mysore regions. The specialty  of this dosa is the red chutney smeared inside and stuffed with  potato filling which is served with gatti chutney and sambar. This is a crowd pulling recipe which immensely popular in Indian restaurants, almost every Indian restaurant have this recipe added to their menu.  

This dosa recipe is a delicious treat for entire family for a weekend breakfast. 


For the batter
2 cups Plain rice (sona masoori)
2 cups Idli rice
1 cup Urad Dal
1 tsp Fenugreek Seeds
1 cup Yogurt
1 tsp Sugar
1 1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
Water as needed

For red chutney
10-15 whole Red chilies
1 pod of Garlic, peeled
2 sticks of Cinnamon

For Potato filling
5 medium sided Potatoes, halved
1 onion, finely chopped
1 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tsp Channa dal
3-4 Green chilies, cut lengthwise
A sprig of curry leaves
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
1/2 tsp freshly grated Ginger
3 tsp Oil
Water as needed

For White coconut chutney

For sambhar


  • For the batter
    • Wash and soak plain rice, idli rice,Urad dal and fenugreek seeds  seperately in water overnight
    • Wash the soaked rice and urad dal in water for 2-3 times 
    • First grind the rice in wet grinder into a smooth batter. Next grind urad dal in wet grinder into a smooth batter. Add water as needed
    • Mix batter with salt and baking soda. Ferment for 8-10 hours until batter turns spongy 
    • Remember- do not add to much water. The ladle should have a thick covering of batter after it is dipped in the batter
    • After the batter ferments, add yogurt and sugar. Mix well
  • For Red chutney
    • Cook red chilies in water for 2-3 minutes. Make a smooth paste of red chilies, garlic and cinnamon
    • Season it with salt
  • For potato filling
    • Cook potatoes in water using a  pressure cooker for 10 minutes.  After it cools, peel and mash the potatoes
    • In a pan, heat oil. When it turns smoky, add mustard seeds, bengal gram, curry leaves and green chilies. Saute for few seconds
    • Then add turmeric powder and onion. Cook until onions softens
    • Add Potatoes and season it with salt. Add 2 cups of water and mix well. Cook for 2 minutes 
  • Making of Mysore Masala Dosa
    • Preheat full flat pan on medium heat. Pour a scoop of batter in center of the pan. Using back of the ladle spread the batter in clockwise direction. Wait for a minute to cook
    • Now smear a tsp of Red Chutney on top of dosa. Wait for another 30 sec. Until dosa turns golden brown and crisp
    • Place a scoop of potato filling in the center of dosa
    • Fold the dosa 
    • Serve hot with chutney and sambhar

May 12, 2014

White Bass Puli Varuval | White Bass Fish Fry

Meen varuval (fish fry) is an exotic shallow fried fish from coastal TamilNadu. This recipe is a reminiscent of both flavors and textures. The marinade is a family recipe made from tamarind pulp, rice flour, chili-coriander powder, turmeric and salt. This shallow fried fish is crispy on the outside, juicy and succulent inside. 

This is completely a different recipe from what I have tried before. For this recipe, I used wild caught thinly sliced White Bass fish from Canada which perfectly suited this recipe.   This is a must try recipe for seafood lovers.


10 -12 Thinly sliced White Bass Fillets
Oil for shallow fry

For Marinade
1/2 cup Tamarind pulp (thick extract)
2 tsp Chili-Corander powder
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
2 tsp Rice Flour


  • Make a paste of all the ingredients under marinade
  • Apply marinade on fish and refrigerate for 30 minutes
  • In a full flat pan, add 1/4 cup of oil. Place fish on the pan. Shallow fry on both the sides until it turns brown and crisp on medium heat
  • Serve hot with lemon wedges and onion slices

May 8, 2014

Ragi Rotti | Finger Millet Falt Bread

"Ragi Rotti" is a traditional breakfast recipe in the state of Karnataka. Ragi is an extremely nutritious millet with an great source of carbohydrate, protein, fiber and calcium.  It is also an excellent food for weight loss program and for those who have diabetes. It is given to kids between the ages 1.5 yrs to 5 yrs in the form of ragi seri for development of bones.

Even today, consumption of ragi has been a staple diet in my house and it is prepared in the form of flat bread (rotti), ragi ball, Dosa, idli or Ragi kanji.  

This recipe is made with ragi flour combined with onions, dill, green chilies, cilantro and  cumin. It is quiet filling.


2 Cups of Ragi flour
1 Onion, finely chopped
1 Carrot, shredded (optional)
1 bunch of Dill, finely chopped
Handful of cilantro, finely chopped
5 Green Chilies, finely chopped
1 tsp Cumin seeds


  • In a mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients. Add enough water to knead it into a smooth dough 
  • Now divide the dough into equal portions and roll it into balls. About 3 inches each
  • Smear few drops of  oil on a full flat pan. Take a portion of ragi ball, place it at the center,  start patting along the edges and  flatten it into a circle 
  • Cover the pan and  fry evenly on both the sides. Add a little oil on the sides if needed
  • Serve hot with coconut chutney and Ghee

May 7, 2014

Idli Podi

Idli podi other wise called chutney powder is a great combination with steamed idli's. This idli podi is an exotic combination of lentils and spices like urad dal, Bengal gram, pepper,  red chilies, sesame seeds, coriander seeds and curry leaves which are roasted and ground into coarse powder that can last to several months. 

Idli powder is mixed with sesame seed oil or any oil and it is served with idli. Also, you can serve this idli podi with dosa or any south Indian breakfast dishes. This podi has a vibrant color and a great aroma.


1 cup Urad Dal
1 cup Channa Dal
3 tsp Pepper
10 Whole red Chili
2 tsp Sesame Seeds
1 tsp Coriander seeds
A Bunch of Curry Leaves


  • Dry roast all the ingredients seperately. Make slightly coarse powder using a blender
  • Season it with salt
  • Sore in an air tight container up to 4 months

May 6, 2014

Spicy French Toast

Its nothing better than  to have a French toast for breakfast. A very simple and easy breakfast recipe; and off course my favorite breakfast dish.

Best part of this recipe is.. you don't have to be an expert or a chef to make this recipe. 3 basic ingredients from your kitchen pantry- eggs, bread and milk. And how simple is that!! Bring all these 3 ingredients together to make this delicious English breakfast. Well, I added more pepper to give a kick and make it spicy.


4 Slices of Bread (any choice, French bread is more tasty!!!)
2 Eggs
2 Egg whites
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp Salt
2 tsp Milk


  • Whisk together eggs, pepper, salt and milk 
  • Soak a slice of bread in eggs and gently place it on a preheated griddle having butter on it. Add more butter on both the sides if needed to boost flavor
  • Toast on both the sides 
  • Serve hot with some fresh fruit on side