Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Dhaniya/Malli Podi/Poriyal Podi/Coriander-Lentil Powder

Dhaniya/Malli/Coriander Powder mixed with rice & ghee

This is also called as Paruppu podi, which is rich in protein.  It's particulary good for growing kids.
Ingredients for Dhaniya/Coriander Powder


Dhaniya/Malli/Coriander Seeds – 3 tbsp.

Channa dhal/Kadalai Paruppu/Bengal Gram – 3 tbsp.

Urad dhal/Ulundu/Black gram – 2 tbsp.

Jeera/Seeragam/Cumin Seeds – 1 tsp.

Dried Red Chillies – 10 (use less, if you want less-spicy)

Salt – to taste

Dry roast all the above ingredients, until good flavour emanates from them. Avoid burning; if chillies get warm, it’s enough.

Coriander/Dhaniya/Malli Powder

Grind coarsely in a mixer and store in an air-tight container. 

Final touch:

Kadugu/Mustard seeds - 1 tsp.

Curry leaves - few sprigs

Dry roast mustard seeds and curry leaves (slightly crushed), to garnish. This will give a wonderful flavour and crunchy texture.

 Serve with hot rice and ghee, alternatively you can use to garnish plain vegetable curries.

Coriander Podi!





Monday, 25 February 2013

Pudhina/Mint Adai Dosai - lentil, Mint Dosa

Pudhina/Mint Adai Dosai - lentil, Mint Dosa

This is a special variety of Dosa, which is very tasty. It's an excellent, protein rich food for growing children.  The combination of rice, lentils, Mint and onion, makes it healthy. It's a quick and easy breakfast food, which can be prepared and eaten immediately, no fermentation time required. Avoid storing it for the next day, try to consume the same day it is made.

It's an easy way to feed 'mint' to kids, which is an excellent source of minerals and vitamins.  It's very good for digestion too.



Idli Rice/Par-boiled Rice - 1 Cup

Thuvaram Paruppu/Toor Dhal - 3/4 Cup

Paasiparuppu/Moong Dhal - 1/4 Cup

Dried Red Chilli - 6 to 8 (or)

Green Chillies - 5

Finely chopped Big onion - 1

Finely Chopped Mint Leaves - 1/4 to 1/2 Cup

Ginger - 1 small piece

Seeragam/Cumin Seeds/Jeera - 1 tsp.

Sombu/saunf/Fennel Seeds - 1/2 tsp.

Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp.

Salt - to taste

Fine Pepper-Cumin powder - to toss over Adai/Dosa (optional)


Soaked rice with ginger and dried chillies, to grind


Soaked dhal


Mint and Onion


Batter/Adai maavu



Soak the dhal and rice separately, for about an hour. First grind the rice with chilli, ginger, cumin seeds and Fennel Seeds. Grind until it becomes very smooth. Secondly, grind dhal/lentils just for few seconds, even pulsing would do. It should be coarse. Now combine, rice batter and dhal with turmeric powder, mint, salt, Asafoetida/Perungayam and onion.

Adai in the making

Now the batter/maavu is ready. In Dosa pan, make Adai/Lentil Dosa, dribble 1 tsp. oil over it, if you like, toss a bit of Cumin Pepper powder and cook both sides. Serve with Chutney/Avial/Puzhi Kuzhambu/Sugar.

Pudhina/Mint Adai Dosai - lentil, Mint Dosa!





Sunday, 24 February 2013

Keppai/Ragi Dosai/Finger Millet Dosai

Ragi/Keppai Dosai/Finger Millet Dosa
Ragi is a wonderful cereal grain, which has numerous health benefits. It's rich in iron, calcium and dietary fibre. It gives a feeling of fullness, so weight watchers can conveniently consume Ragi.


Ragi flour/Keppai maavu - 2 cups
(Both Baba's & Alagappa's are equally good)

Black gram/Ulundu/Urad dhal - 1/4 cup

Fenugreek Seeds/Vendhayam - 1/2 tsp.

Finely Chopped Curry leaves - 1 tbsp.

Salt - to taste.


Ready made Ragi flour


Soak Ulundu/Urad dhal and fenugreek seeds/vendhayam for half an hour, and then grind it with water in a mixer. Add Ragi flour, salt and enough water; grind again until they're well combined. Store it in a box; leave it to ferment for 6 to 8 hours. To expedite fermentation, you can add mor/butter milk/ 2 tsp. yoghurt mixed well with water. Now the batter/Mavu is ready to make Dosai. Before making Dosa, add the finely chopped curry leaves. This makes the Dosa even healthier.

Alternatively, you can take Ragi/Keppai flour and combine with half cup of Idli Mavu/batter, yoghurt and salt. (but, when you have time, try to follow the method stated above, for tastier dosas)

Ragi/Keppai flour - 2 Cups

Idli Mavu - 1/2 Cup

Butter Milk/Mor - 1/2 cup. (Or)

Yogurt - 1/4 Cup
(blended with water)

Finely Chopped Curry leaves - 1 tbsp.

Salt - to taste

Combine all the above and leave for at least 1 to 2 hours, before making Dosai.

Ground Ulundu/Urad and fenugreek seeds

Combined Ragi/Keppai and ulundu/Urad dosa batter


Ragi/Keppai Dosai in the making

When the Maavu/Batter is ready, make Dosa in a pan add one teaspoon of oil, cover it, when it becomes crispy, serve hot with Chutney/Sambhar/Kosamalli.
Tomato, Chilli Chutney makes the best combination ever.

I tried with Mint & Coriander Chutney, which you can find in my Chutney varieties, it goes very well with Ragi Dosai.

Keppai/Ragi Dosai with Chilli/Milagai Chutney!

Friday, 22 February 2013

Chettinad Muttai Kuzhambu/ Egg gravy

Chettinad Muttai Kuzhambu/ Egg gravy

In Chettinad, Muttai Kuzhamvu is a special gravy with wonderful flavour, yet very simple and easy to make.


Boiled Eggs – 5 (according to necessity)

Sliced Shallots/Small Onions – 10

Garlic Pods with skin, edges trimmed – 6

(If using Nattupoondu, which is available in Indian Stores, Little India, as well as Mustafa Centre – can use 10 to 12)

Sliced Tomato – 1

Tamarind Juice – ¼ cup

Sambhar Powder – 2 tsp.

Coriander Powder - 2 tsp.

Baba’s or less spicy variety chilli powder – 1 to 2 tsp.

Boiled Eggs

Soaked Tamarind

Slightly pounded Garlic pods with skin


Kadugu/Mustard seed – ¼ tsp.

Sombu/Saunf/Fennel Seeds – ½ tsp.

Vendhayam/ Fenugreek seeds/Methi seeds – ½ tsp.

Perungayam/Hing/Asafoetida – ¼ tsp.

Curry Leaves – few

Oil – 1 tbsp.

Tips Tips Tips…

To get a wonderful flavour from garlic, my mother adds garlic little later and not while frying

onion and tomato, she pounds the garlic slightly in a mortar and pestle, with skin on. When

the gravy gets cooked, the aroma of garlic will fill the entire house.

Slit the eggs slightly on both sides, so that the eggs will be able to absorb the gravy.

Soak the masala powders in water for about 10 minutes, so that it gets blended very well.

Soaked masala powders

freshly pounded garlic adds wonderful flavour


In a kadai, pour oil, add mustard seeds, fennel seeds, fenugreek seeds, Asafoetida and

Curry leaves.  Add onion, sauté for 2 minutes; add tomato and sauté for another 2 minutes. 

Combine masala mixture, salt and tamarind juice. Now toss in the pounded garlic

pods, cook for about 10 minutes, until the gravy gets rid of raw flavour.  Now add eggs,

simmer for few more minutes. Switch off and garnish with fresh Coriander leaves.

Simmering, to absorb the flavour

Flavourful, spicy Muttai kuzhambu/Egg Gravy is ready to be served with hot rice. Kids will

love it, I can guarantee. If you want to make it less spicy, reduce the chilli powder and add

more coriander and/or cumin powder.

Muttai Kuzhambu/Egg gravy!

With Brown Rice!

Nonya Achar/Fresh Vegetable Pickle

Nonya Achar



Nonya Achar is a popular Condiment in Singapore/Malaysian Restaurants and homes.

For me, this is more a Vegetable salad than a pickle.  Since it’s a mixture of fresh vegetables, it can be consumed more (without guilt feeling) than the other highly salted and spicy pickles.


Ingredients for Nonya Achar


Carrot – 1 (sliced into match-stick size)

Cucumber – 1 (sliced into match-stick size)

(Usually with skin, however I’ve peeled)

Lemon juice – 1 tbsp.  (Or)

Vinegar – 1 tbsp.

Roasted White Sesame seeds – 2 tsp.

Crushed Red Chillies – 1 tsp. (soaked in warm water)

Finely chopped Garlic – 2 pods

Grated ginger – ½ tsp.

Turmeric root crushed into paste  -  1/2 tsp. (or) 

Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp.

Shallots/Small onions – 5 (optional)

Olive Oil – 1 tsp.

Salt - to taste

Sugar - 2 tsp.


Crush the ginger and garlic in mortar and pestle lightly, combine the vegetables, chilli and lemon juice. (I always prefer fresh lime juice) Toss in salt, sugar, sesame seeds and Olive oil, relish with rice.

If you like, you can add Radish, and Cabbage, esp. the purple one. For a tangy taste, you can add raw mango and/or pineapple.

Sweet, sour and spicy Vegetable delight



Vegetable Spring Rolls:

Vegetable Spring Rolls


Spring Rolls are loved by everyone, irrespective of the age.  In Singapore, it’s a prominent item in most of the parties. It can be excellent an evening snack.


Spring Roll Pastry

Spring Roll Pastry (eggless) – 1 pkt

Oil – for frying



Vegetables for stuffing
Vegetable stuffing
Large Potato – 1(boiled and mashed)

Grated Carrot – 1

Shredded Cabbage – 2 tbsp.

Finely Chopped Big onion – 1

Ginger Garlic Paste – 1 tsp.

Kasoori Methi – 1 tsp.

(Dried fenugreek leaves – available at Mustafa Centre, Singapore)

Finely chopped Coriander leaves – optional

Turmeric powder – 1/8 tsp.

Chilli powder – ½ tsp.

Garam Masala – 1 tsp.

Cumin Powder – ½ tsp. (optional)

Salt – to taste



Cumin seeds – ½ tsp.

Mustard seeds – ¼ tsp.



Take the spring roll pastry out, cover with a clean damp cloth. 

In a kadai, add 2 tsp. of oil, followed by mustard and cumin seeds. Add Ginger Garlic paste, fry for one minute, followed by onion, cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Then add shredded Cabbage and Carrot and cook for few minutes.  Now, combine mashed potato, masala powders, kasaoori methi and salt and cook for few more minutes, in low heat.  Garnish with coriander leaves, set aside.  Stuffing is ready.



Take the spring roll pastry, one at a time, place one spoon of stuffing and roll it. (for sealing, you can use 2 tsp. plain flour mixed with little water)  Then deep fry the rolls in oil until golden brown.  Serve hot with tomato sauce.


Vegetable Spring Rolls

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Nellikkai Urukaai/Amla/Gooseberry Pickle

Gooseberry/Amla Pickle/Nellikkai Urukaai!

Gooseberry is a powerful anti-oxidant and is rich in Vitamin C; it’s a most important ingredient in many Ayurvedic medicines. It has immense health benefits.  We should find more ways of consuming Gooseberry.  Gooseberry pickle is very much palatable, thus making it easier to include in our menu.


Nellikkai/Amla/Gooseberry - 6

Red Chilli Powder - 2 tsp.

Turmeric Powder - 1/2 tsp.

Salt - to taste

Gingelly oil - 2 tsp. (final touch)

Steam Cooked Nellikkai/Gooseberry


Mustard Seeds - 1/4 tsp.

Perungayam/Asafoetida/Hing - 1/4 tsp.

Oil - 2 tsp.

Curry Leaves - few


Take Nellikkai/Gooseberry in a bowl and Steam cook in an idli pot or any other steaming mode. Alternatively you can add little water and microwave for few minutes, until it becomes soft & tender. Cut into wedges, toss in the chilli powder, turmeric and salt. Do the tempering with mustard, Asafoetida and curry leaves. Let the Asafoetida/Perungayam roast well, and then add the nellikkai/gooseberry. Dribble Gingelly oil over it.

Serve with Curd Rice/Thayir Sadham.

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Morkozhambu/Butter milk Kozhambu/Dahi/Yoghurt/Curd Gravy

Morkozhambu/Butter milk Kozhambu is a very delicious and unique gravy variety. Besides, all the ingredients have great medicinal value, which promotes digestion.

Morkozhbu/Butter milk Kozhambu with Winter Melon/Poosanikkai


Yoghurt/Thayir/Curd/Dahi (preferably sour) - 1/2 Cup

Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp.

Winter Melon/ Poosanikkai - 250gms
(Cut into 1&1/2 inch strips) or

Choyate - 1
(Cut into 1 & 1/2 inch strips)

Choyate/Chow Chow

To Grind:

Ginger - 1 small piece

Garlic - 2

Green Chillies - 4 to 5

Grated Coconut - 1 to 2 tbsp.

Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp.

Fresh Coriander – to garnish

Ingredients to grind



Mustard seeds – ¼ tsp.

Jeera/Cumin Seeds - 1/4 tsp.

Black Pepper (crushed lightly) – ½ tsp.

Dried Red Chilli – 1 to 2 (or)

Crushed dried red Chilli - 1/4 tsp.

Curry leaves – few

Asafoetida/Perungayam/Hing – 1/8 tsp.

Combine yoghurt with water using whisk, to avoid lumps 



Getting cooked in low heat


Grind the above ingredients with enough water.  Dilute the curd/yoghurt/dahi with 1 cup water and mix it well. (Use a whisk to combine well)  Add the ground masala, turmeric powder, coriander powder and salt to the diluted curd, and set aside. Wonderful flavor would emanate from the mixture. Check the salt level and add more if needed.

In a kadai/pot cook the choyate/winter melon with 1 cup water, salt and turmeric. Avoid over cooking, it should still be firm and not very soft, esp., the winter-melon, otherwise it tends to merge with the curd.
Cooked Winter-melon

Take a kadai, pour oil and do the tempering, then add the cooked Choyate/Winter-melon, after a minute.  Reduce the flame to the lowest, then add Yoghurt/dahi/curd mixture and cook in low flame until it boils. It will take 8 to 10 minutes.  Don’t ever increase the flame, or else the gravy might curdle.
Morkozhbu/Butter milk Kozhambu seved with Rice & Pappad

Garnish with fresh Coriander leaves, delicious Morkozhambu/Buttermilk Kozhambu/Dahi/Youghurt gravy is ready to serve. Serve with hot rice and Appalam/Pappad. It’s a great hit with our kids.