Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Barley Adai

You must be wondering why I don’t post breakfast/tiffin recipes regularly on my space. It is not that I don’t prepare tiffin, just that they are prepared mostly at dinner time and not for breakfast, which makes it really difficult to click pictures. Moreover, I’m really not good at clicking pictures of these Dosai/Adai varieties. So even if I make them at some time when there’s enough light to click, I keep postponing the task of taking pictures of these items.

The other day, I tried these Barley adais for dinner and they tasted really good not to forget the goodness of barley. Also they were not as heavy as the ones made with the combination of rice and lentils. So couldn't resist clicking. I had some batter leftover, so prepared them the following day morning and took pics. As expected, pics were not up to my expectation, but still I decided to post. Do try these healthy barley adais some time; I am sure you will not miss the rice adais. 

What you’ll need
  1. Barley Flour – 3 Cup
  2. Raw Rice – ½ cup
  3. Tuar Dal – ½ cup
  4. Bengal Gram Dal – ½ cup
  5. Urad Dal – 2 tbsp
  6. Horsegram – ¼ cup (optional)
  7. Dried Red Chillies – 3 to 4
  8. Asafoetida – a generous pinch
  9. Curry Leaves – few sprigs
  10. Salt to taste
  11. Oil – as required

  1. Soak the rice, dals and red chillies for 3 to 4 hours.
  2. Grind to a coarse paste adding water. Add the barley flour to the ground paste and mix well.
  3. Add the salt, asafetida and curry leaves and mix well.
  4. Add water as required to make the batter of pouring consistency.
  5. Heat a tava. Now pour a ladle of batter on the tava and spread in a circular motion from center to outside. Just like making a regular dosa.
  6. Drizzle oil on all sides and cook on medium flame. Flip and cook the other side too until brown spots appear and adai is crisp.
  7. Remove from heat and serve immediately with chutney of your choice.
We had it with Maanga Kootan.

  1. The adai batter does not require fermentation and can be prepared immediately after grinding. But I like to rest my batter for a couple of hours.
  2. You can replace the barley flour with barley pearls. Soak the barley pearls for a minimum of 5 to 6 hours.
  3. You can add Moong dal/pasi paruppu instead of horse gram.
  4. You can add finely chopped onions to the batter.
  5. You can replace dried red chilies with cumin and black pepper, that gives a unique flavor.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Mango Coconut Milk Smoothie

I am here with another mango post today. Mangoes are the most versatile of all fruits and hence are rightly called the King of fruits. Apart from eating the ripe juicy mangoes as such, they can be had a variety of forms. You could make anything from a Pulissery, Cheesecake, Kulfi, Milkshake or this Smoothie. You could even use it in muffins and Kheers. 

Here is a wonderful combination of mango and coconut milk. So if you are tired of making the regular milkshake try this, I'm sure you will love it. The amount of coconut milk mentioned in the recipe below, makes a really thick smoothie. If you would like a runnier consistency then feel free to add more coconut milk.

What you'll need
  1. Ripe Mango – 1 Big, peeled, diced and frozen
  2. Thick Coconut Milk – 1 Cup* (See notes)
  3. Sugar – 2 Tbsp

  1. Add all the ingredients and blend until smooth.
  2. Serve Chilled.

That's how quickly the smoothie disappeared, even before I could clear the set up, so thought of clicking the empty glass.


  1. The smoothie was really thick, you can dilute it with a little more coconut milk if you want. I will be adding a cup more the next time.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Mango Kulfi

Today is one of those days, where I have been sitting in front of the computer, writing sentences after sentences and deleting them all. Just not my day to write a post I guess. But I did not want to postpone posting this delicious kulfi. So, go ahead and make these delicious kulfis at home and treat your family.

What you'll need
  1. Milk – 2.5 cup (500 ml)
  2. Condensed Milk – ¾ cup
  3. Mango Pulp – 2 cup (I used the pulp of 2 mangoes)
  4. Sugar – 3 tbsp
  5. Cardamom – 3 to 4
  6. Saffron – few strands
  7. Cashewnut/Almond/Pistachio Powder – 2 to 3 tbsp
  8. Cornflour – 2 tbsp
  9. Pistachio – few sliced for garnishing (optional)

  1. Heat milk, condensed milk together until it starts boiling.
  2. Add saffron strands and powdered cardamom
  3. Also add the sugar and mix until the sugar is dissolved.
  4. Make a paste of corn flour with 3 tbsp of cold milk.
  5. Add this paste to the milk mixture and keep stirring on medium flame until it starts thickening.
  6. Remove from flame and cool completely.
  7. Once cool add the mango mixture and the nut powder and mix well until homogenous.
  8. Pour into Kulfi moulds or paper cups close lid or cover with aluminum foil and freeze until set.
  9. If you want to insert a stick, then, once the kulfi is half set insert the stick cover with aluminum foil and set to freeze again for about 5 to 6 hours.
  10. To serve, run the outside of the kulfi moulds under tap water for a minute, this enables the kulfi to come out of the mould easily. Serve as is or cut and serve garnished with few saffron strands and pista slices. The garnishing is optional.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Cucumber Mint Cooler

A glass of fresh lemonade is always a welcome relief on a hot sunny day. I remember I started making lemon juice on my own when I was around 10 years old, but my daughter who’s just 7 surprised me the other day, by preparing this refreshing juice. And she even presented it with a straw and a slice of lemon. Now our family has totally stopped tea in the evenings and look forward to a chilled glass of lemon juice prepared by my daughter.

Now, if you are a person who likes experimenting with your cold drinks, then here is a refreshing way to do so. This summer, try this cucumber lemonade, with the freshness of cucumber, mint and lemon. There are many variations to this drink you can try, apart from the one mentioned below like use honey to sweeten the drink instead of sugar. Why think of only sweet juices, you could completely skip the sugar and spice up the drink with some black pepper powder and chaat masala.

What you'll need
  1. Cucumber – 2 cups, peeled and chopped
  2. Mint – 8 to 10 Leaves
  3. Lemon Juice – 1 tbsp *
  4. Sugar – 2 tbsp*
  5. Salt – ½ tsp
  6. Water – 1.5 cup
  7. Ice Cubes

  1. In a blender, add the cucumber pieces, mint leaves, sugar and salt and grind.
  2. Strain using a fine strainer, add the water while straining.
  3. Add the ice cubes in serving glasses and pour the drink over it. Serve chilled, garnished with a cucumber slice and sprig of fresh mint.

  1. Adjust lemon juice and sugar according to taste.
  2. For a variation, skip the sugar and spice it up with some black pepper and chat masala.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

New York Style Pizza with Homemade Pizza Sauce

Making a pizza from scratch has been on my to-do list, ever since I bought the oven. But, you can say my laziness, it never materialized.  When the Baking Partners announced the challenge for this month I was really happy. It was a great experience making the Pizza at home. My first attempt at making the pizza itself was a success. The pizza’s turned out super delicious and needless to say, kids and elders loved it. My in – laws preferred it to the store bought ones. Any day, homemade is homemade; it is better liked with its small flaws isn't it?

Yield – 3, 8” pizzas

What you'll need for the Pizza Crust
  1. All Purpose Flour – 3 ½ cup
  2. Active Dry Yeast – 1 tsp
  3. Salt – ¾ tsp
  4. Sugar – 1 tsp
  5. Olive Oil – 2 tbsp
  6. Water – 270 ml

  1. Heat about ¼ cup of water, from the mentioned amount (270 ml), the water should be just warm.
  2. Add the yeast and a pinch of sugar.
  3. Set this aside for 5 to 10 minutes.
  4. Once the mixture starts bubbling, you can be sure your yeast is working else start afresh.
  5. In a wide mouthed bowl, add the all purpose flour, salt, sugar and mix well with hands.
  6. Now add the yeast mix and give a good mix.
  7. I used my Philips Mixer, add the required amount of water and mix until the mixture comes together.
  8. Next add the oil and mix for 15 at medium speed or until the dough passes the window pane test.
  9. Grease a bowl with oil and place this dough in it.
  10. Cover tightly with a cling wrap and refrigerate ideally for 72 hours. I refrigerated for 24 hours.
  11. Take out the dough and keep it outside atleast an hour or 2 before preparing the pizza.

What you'll need for the Pizza Sauce
  1. Tomatoes – 400gm
  2. Onion – ½ of a small, sliced
  3. Garlic – 2 cloves
  4. Dried Basil – 1 tsp
  5. Oregano - 1/2 tsp
  6. Red Chilly Flakes – ½ tsp
  7. Sugar – 1 tsp
  8. Butter – 1 tbsp
  9. Olive Oil - 1 tbsp
  10. Salt to taste

  1. Grind the tomatoes. It can be a little chunky.
  2. Heat a non stick kadai, with butter and olive oil.
  3. Add the crushed garlic, basil, oregano and chilly flakes. Sauté for about 2 mins.
  4. Next add the sliced onions, tomato puree.
  5. Cook covered on low heat till the mixture reduces to ½ its volume or has reached a saucy texture. Keep stirring once in awhile to avoid burning.

For the toppings
I used
  1. Bell Peppers – ½ each of Red, Yellow and Green, cut into strips
  2. Onion – sliced
  3. Babycorn – sliced
  4. Cheese – I used Mozzarella – as required

To assemble the pizza
  1. Preheat the oven to 200C
  2. Flour a pizza pan or a baking tray, (I used the bottom of my spring form pan), divide the dough into 3 equal parts.
  3. Place the dough in the middle of the dusted plate, and start patting the dough and also keep moving the plate in circular motion.
  4. Press in such a way that you have a thick edges and the remaining area is thin and flat.
  5. Brush some melted butter or olive oil.
  6. With a fork, lightly prick the insides of the pizza, so that it doesn’t puff up.
  7. Now, apply a tbsp or 2 of the prepared pizza sauce and spread it all over, leaving the thick edges.
  8. Now, spread the toppings and top with the grated cheese.
  9. Place this plate in the oven and bake for 10 to 15 minutes or till the underside turns light brown and crisp.


  1. The dough should be ideally rested for 72 hours, but due to some time constraints, I rested only for 24 hours, but the results were good.
  2. Use toppings of your choice.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Ragi Dosa/ Finger Millet Crepes

Our family is not a big ragi lover. I don't remember even my kids relishing the ragi koozhu. They used to prefer Cerelac or koozhu made out of wheat flour. But somehow, they never took to this healthy grain. 
The only thing that goes down the throats of my family members is the Sattu Maavu Porridge, which also has ragi in it. 

In my effort to somehow feed this nutritious grain, long ago, I had tried an instant version of ragi dosa, using ragi flour, which was not well taken at all. I had to kind of throw away the entire batter and used the remaining ragi flour to make the porridge and somehow finished it. Since then I completely abandoned any efforts of using ragi in our diet.

The other day, while shopping for vegetables, I saw these ragi sprouts, and again I was tempted to buy them. So I just took couple of packets of these and prepared the dosas. The recipe is adapted from my favorite Mallika Badhrinath's book. 

The response was better, people had it without a word and were asking for more. But it really needs to be eaten hot from the tawa. So do try this nutritious dosas.

What you'll need
  1. Sprouted Ragi/Finger Millet – 2 cups (see  notes)
  2. Raw Rice -  ¾ cup (I used Sona Masoori)
  3. Par Boiled Rice – ¾ cup (Idly Rice)
  4. Urad Dal – ½ cup
  5. Salt to taste

  1. Wash and soak both the rice for 3 hours.
  2. Wash and soak the urad dal for about 30 minutes.
  3. Soak the ragi sprouts for about 20 minutes.
  4. Grind all the above together to a smooth batter adding water whenever required. Grind similar to Dosa batter.
  5. Add salt and mix well.
  6. Ferment for 4 to 5 hours or overnight.
  7. For making the dosas, Heat a tawa.
  8. Adjust the consistency of the batter, by adding water if required. It should be of pouring consistency. Not very thick, not very thin, just like the regular dosa batter.
  9. Pour a ladle full of batter in the center of the tawa, and spread from from center to outside in a circular motion.
  10. Drizzle some oil on the sides, cook for a minute then flip over drizzle oil if required, cook till crisp.
  11. Remove from heat and serve hot with a milagai podi, ellu podi or a chutney of your choice.

  1. I used store bought ragi sprouts. You can sprout them at home too.
  2. You may use just soaked ragi, for that soak ragi for about 5 to 6 hours.
  3. The batter will have the ragi skin, don’t worry about that.
  4. While pouring the batter on to the tava, make sure the tava is hot enough, but not very hot, else you may not be able to spread the dosa properly.
  5. Serve immediate, unlike the regular dosa, it doesn’t taste good, when not hot.

 Linking this to Healthy Diet - Cooking with Sprouts hosted by Roshni.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Ellu Podi/Kanu Podi

I had been to my grandmother's place last weekend and enjoyed my stay there. It was a complete break from cooking and other household chores. I got totally pampered by my dearest grandmother, uncles and aunts. More than me, my children loved their stay. On the way back home, yesterday, my little one tugged at my dress and said, "amma, ennakku, D Chitti, yosanaiaave irruku", (She was supposed to say "nyabagam") and started crying. She wanted to go back. I pacified her somehow, showing this and that and finally, agreeing to take her back, this weekend.

I had a bagful of goodies, especially made for me by my granny. She had given a batch of paruppu podi, and this delicious tasting ellu podi.  I was standing next to while she made it and noted down only the ingredients. Came back home and clicked the pictures. She was so nostalgic, while preparing the powder. She remembered my father, who used to love this.

This podi is not the regular ellu podi, that is used for making rice. This podi is also called Kanu Podi as it is made specially for Kanu, the day after Pongal. This one is sweet and spicy and goes best as a side dish for dosas and adais. Try it once, and I'm sure you are going to keep making batches of it again and again.

What you’ll need
  1. White Sesame Seeds/Ellu/Til – 1.5 cup
  2. Dried Red Chilly – 5 to 6
  3. Powdered Jaggery – ¼ cup
  4. Salt to taste

  1. Heat a heavy bottomed Kadai.
  2. Add the sesame seeds and dry roast until nice and brown or until the seeds start popping.
  3. Dry roast the red chillies too.
  4. Cool.
  5. Now add the sesame seeds, red chillies and give a pulse in the mixer. (See notes)
  6. Now add salt to taste and the powdered jaggery and pulse again, so that the salt and jaggery are mixed well with the sesame seeds powder.

Store in clean and dry containers. 
Tastes best with dosai, adai etc.

  1. Do not grind for too long, then it will become lumpy oily and not remain in powder form.
  2. This podi is sweet and hot. Adjust the spice level according to your tolerance level.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Vanilla Panna Cotta with Pomegranate Gelee

Panna Cotta – the name was alien to me until very recently. When the Groovy Gourmets decided to make Panna Cotta for this month, I was like what Cotta?? Thanks to the Internet, where everything and anything in world can be easily accessed. I came to know what it is.

So for all those who don’t know what is Panna Cotta, it is an Italian dessert, prepared by cooking, milk, cream and sugar and then mixing with gelatine. It is then cooled until set. It is usually served with any kind of fruit coulis or sauce. I have substituted gelatine with China grass strands and topped the panna cotta with pomegranate gelee.

This pudding is really soft, smooth and silky, the best part being that the cooking time is really minimum. It was liked even by H who doesn’t care too much about anything sweet. So, all in all, a must try for anyone who loves their desserts. 

What you'll need
  1. Milk – 1 cup (200ml)
  2. Cream – 1 cup (200ml)
  3. Sugar – ½ cup
  4. Agar Agar/China Grass – 5gm
  5. Water – 2 to 3 tbsp
  6. Vanilla Essence – ½ tsp

For the Pomegranate Gelee
  1. Pomegrante Juice – 1 cup (I used store bought)
  2. Agar Agar – 2.5 gm
  3. Sugar – 1 tbsp

  1. Prepare the moulds or glasses, in which the pannacotta is to be set, by washing them with water. Don’t dry.
  2. Soak the China grass in water for 30 minutes.
  3. In a heavy bottomed vessel, add milk, cream and sugar and heat on medium heat until the sugar is completely dissolved and the mixture is just about to boil, stirring regularly.
  4. Add vanilla essence and slightly cool the milk and cream mixture.
  5. In the meanwhile, remove the excess water from the china grass, keep only about 2 to 3 tbsp of water, and heat it on medium heat until it melts.
  6. Strain, this melted china grass and then pour into the milk cream mixture, stirring continuously.
  7. Pour this into the prepared moulds or glasses and allow to come to room temperature.
  8. Refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours.

For the pomegranate gelee:
  1. Heat half a cup of pomegranate juice with sugar until it is dissolved.
  2. Heat the other half cup of pomegranate juice with the soaked china grass until china grass is melted.
  3. Strain and pour the melted china grass into the sugar and pomegranate mixture.
  4. Pour over the set panna cotta and allow to set again for 2 to 3 hours.
  5. To de-mould, run a knife through the sides of the glass or mould and invert on a glass plate.

Serve chilled.

  1. The pomegranate gelee is totally optional, the pannacotta, tastes great just by itself. You could also serve it with any kind of berry coulis (sauce).
  2. I got a 10gm packet of agar agar /China grass, so I took half the quantity for 5gms.
  3. Measure with a measuring scale if you have one.

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