20 December 2015

How I made a cake on a pan on stovetop without oven |Chocolate cake recipe

                                                  
chocolate-recipe

This is my invariable advice to people: Learn how to cook- try new recipes, learn from your mistakes, be fearless, and above all have fun!” ― Julia Child

That's exactly why I simply adore her and I wish I was Julia Child's child :P..Anyways,I do see a version of her in my mother (don't worry mom) and both are definitely my cooking idols. All her quotes gives me inspiration to cook more FEARLESSLY yet have fun...  


how-to-make-cake-without-oven
        
Well,it is the most beautiful season around - the only reason I tolerate winter --because it is Christmas !!

Happy people,smiling faces,glittering houses and stores,jingles everywhere,all wishing and praising the lord,Christmas tree standing tall ,glamed and proud everywhere , gifts wrapped for everyone,waiting for Santa's arrival from North Pole followed by his reindeer ,elves and the fairy tale begins - the season of red,green and white ...and almost every kitchen is busy cooking /baking edible goodies ....mmm..Xmas is in the air !

christmas-cake
   
So,this Christmas,I already started baking .....Just like how I baked a moist yellow cake on a pizza pan on stove top last year,this year I dared to bake fearlessly on the pan itself ...I had an old,worn out pan sitting there like gloomy and useless and since I believe more in recycling stuffs as much as possible (in a healthy proper way of course)-from useless to useful ...So,I baked a moist chocolate cake without an oven right on the stove top in a pan.

unique-cake-recipe
             
Well,seeing is believing ! So,kindly watch my video which has the moist chocolate cake recipe in it and will show how I baked a cake without oven on stove top ,decorated it with my edible Christmas icing....
 
                      
May your home be warm,your holidays grand,and may your heart be held gently in the lord's hands.Happy Christmas my friends!! 


If variety is the spice of life, then my life must be one of the spiciest you ever heard of. A curry of a life. -Paul Child” ― Julia Child, My Life in France 


Happy B'day to Lord Jesus!!


Merry Xmas amigos!!




 

18 December 2015

Kerala Murukku recipe|Christmas Tree DIY


Murukku-Kerala-recipe

Do you know the savory,snacky,salty cousin of the famous Indian sweet,Jalebi ?? Well,if you ask me,it ought to be a "Murukku" or "Chakli" in Hindi .Murukku is a very famous South Indian snack made with rice flour and Black gram flour as the main ingredients plus other mild spices that varies from state to state in India.Chakli on the other hand is the North Indian version made with an additional main ingredient,the besan/Gram flour/Chickpea Flour.They ,more or less, look twins :D.Murukku is made with a special cookware called Murrukku press a.k.a"Seva Nazhi" in Malayalam.



Kerala-Murukku-recipe

I've loads and loads of memories attached to Murukku which my amma darling used to make for us .During those days,it used to be quite time consuming as the Murukku maker,Sev Nazhi used to be quite complicated one compared to the ones available nowadays.You ought to have Sumo muscles or strength to press them into aptly shaped murukks.
 
I remember how momma used to ask me to help her making those murukkus .Even though I used to be a little sumo :D ,I mean,chubby since birth and I had like Sunny Deol would say,"Dhaii kilo ka haath"and I would be praying ,"Daivammey minnichikkaney !" BUT "Ividey scene ellam contra" ; I would be pressing it forever and asking my amma,"Mom,is it poo*** yet..err ..something coming out ??" and my amma would be LOL'ing...and amma would say,"Molu poikkotto-amma pinne vilikyaam...joli kootadey "/my dear daughter go-study or play ..once I am done making will call you...don't increase amma's workload ...And I was like,"That's all I want to hear"..I would run for my life as if I just had a WWF with someone ...massaging my tender wriggly arms ...OH Lord!!


murukku-recipe

Once amma would make them,I would be there without a call as if I was in an invisible cloak before..I would better !..because on the other side my bro would be also keeping an eye ....my mom would sense the trouble coming ..so like clever kids,cleverer mom she was...she would hide lots of them in a tin in our storeroom and she would keep another one exclusively for us...She said it was an evening snack..but for me and my brother...it was anytime snack....eeeehaaa....

And my mom and dad would be grinning like..."Look at them no one has to remind them to eat those snacks !!" Well,it was a competition at home !! Alas...since it was a snack,Bro Won !!



murrukku-kerala-Tamil-Nadu-style


And my next agenda would be where did mommy hide rest of them?...She always hid it beside a long stick -like a reminder of the outcome if I or my bhaiya committed any crime of stealing'em....So,I would with a deep sigh watch my mom serving all the guests who would visit us ,sometimes distributed it to our neighbours ,sometimes came as a surprise surprise in my lunch box....My dear friends it was a biiig golmaal...

I never ate any store bought murukku when I was little until I Left India.Then I don't buy snacks that much even though I gain weight without so.However,if I am a sweet person ,my hubby, just like my bro, is a snack person ..He loves murukku!!...And I hate buying from stores as much as I can..So,I woke my mom as always from sleep one day as if it was an emergency and took the recipe through phone..And I've been making since then...My mother is very happy if she comes to know that I am making exclusively for my hubby..which my parents say is their priority ...(Otherwise they think he is starving :| )...

Christmas-DIY

 So,though murukku is made with rice flour and black lentil flour and some spices,my amma's version is exclusive one- one of a kind..all my friends used to be a big fan of !....However,she used to wash rice,dry it ,roast and grind it to make murukku traditionally ,my amma suggested that I can also use the ready made rice powder as well ..so,as you might have guessed,I chose the latter easier version....

Christmas-TREE-DIY-FOOD-IDEA

So,pls watch my quick video which has the Murukku recipe and will show you how to make a murukku Kerala style with my mother's secret ingredients that takes this murrukku to an awesome another level...Not only that I also have a Christmas DIY- my edible Christmas tree !! Pls watch to see how I made a Christmas tree that I can eat !

                                            

So,what do you think,"Naughty or Nice " ?? Will you let the Santa know,I've a long list for him ,so pls share ;D...

Ho hO Hooo



14 December 2015

Mughlai Soya Chunk recipe|Nutrela Soya chunk curry|Nawabi Soya mealmaker recipe

 soya-chunk-recipe
How do you define soya chunks/nutrela/mealmaker ? If you ask me,I define them as "Vegetarian meat chunks" !! When I was little,I thought Soya chunks were nothing but meat pieces that my clever mommy darling mixed with lots of different vegetables like peas,carrots,potatotes etc etc to make her clever picky daughter EAT!

But the moment I put those chunks into my mouth ,I would realize how really clever I was :| ..well,it tasted like...blaaah..blue...bloop !! They tasted like some rotten vegetable flesh :P.. I simply hated those soya chunks in short,still I am not a big fan of them..but my better half is !! Well,there is a reason I call him my better version..for his choices are always...now for example,"ME" :D;D:D:P....OK jokes apart....like my mother would emphasize how nutritional they are,so does my hubby ...Guess what they are right...

soya-chunk-mughlai-curry-recipe

Did you know ? Because I didn't !
  • According to the Ruchi nutrition website,Soya chunks contain about 54.2 gm of protein,more than the protein found in meats,eggs,milk and wheat.It also has all the necessary amino acids needed by the human body.
  • Since Soy contain,phytoestrogen,they may be useful for menopausal women especially easing the symptoms like osteoporosis etc..
  • Soya chunks are also good source of Vitamin Bs , Omega-3 fatty acids,calcium and iron.
So,nowadays,I am coming in terms with Soya chunks dheere dheere...Here is one Soya Chunk recipe in Mughlai style procrastinating in my draft quite long..it's time to publish it before passing it to new year...Well,new year's new resolution...before I enter the New Year and break it as always..Here is how I make a Nutrela soya chunk/mealmaker recipe in a Nawabi style....

soya-mealmaker-recipe

Mughlai Soya chunk/Nutrella/Mealmaker  

Ingredients

Soya chunks,soaked in warm water until puffed up- 1 cup
Green Peas,boiled - 1/2 cup
Carrots,chopped - 1/2 cup
Onion,medium,chopped - 1 no.
Ginger-garlic paste - 1 tsp
Tomato,big,chopped - 1 no.

To Grind:
Cinnamon,1 inch 
Cardamom - 1 no.
Cloves - 2 nos.
Peppercorn - 1/4 tsp
Coriander seeds - 1-2 tsp
Dry red chillies - 4-6 nos
Cashew nut,soaked - 1 tablespoon
Coconut ,grated - 2 tbsp

Oil /Ghee- 1-2 tbsp
Shahjeera - 1 tsp (optional)
Bayleaf - 1-2 no.
Salt to taste
Water -1-2 cups 
Cilantro leaves for garnishing(optional)

Method:
  1. Dry roast everything under "To grind" (except cashew nut) until it releases aroma.Once it cools,grind it into fine powder .Then add little water and grind again with cashewnuts to make it into a fine paste .Keep it aside.
  2. Heat oil in a pan.Add shahjeera and bay leaves to it,saute for a few seconds.(Ghee will make it more yum)
  3. Add chopped onion ,saute until they become translucent.
  4. Add ginger-garlic paste,saute until the raw smell disappears.
  5. Add soya chunks ,saute for a minute.
  6. Add tomato,saute,cover it until tomato turns soft and mushy.
  7. Now add the above ground paste to it.Saute for a minute.
  8. Add water.Bring it to boil then let it simmer for a while until they thicken.
  9. Add salt to taste.
  10. Serve hot with rice,roti,puri,chapathi,parotta etc...
A royal edible dedication exclusively for my king !!
 Eat,love,live deliciously,

11 December 2015

Vendakka mezhukkupuratti |Okra stir fry|Lady's finger stir fry Kerala style|Vendkkai porial


vendakka mezhukkupuratti
 
Do you ever wonder why the heck is the vegetable "Lady's finger" called a lady's finger ?? Yeah,yeah,it is long ,slender just like fingers.I agree that ! However,look at those pointed tip,now,don't you think it should be called a "Witch's finger "? I mean look at my small,beauty full(well,in my dreams...),multicolored(except green) fingers ,they don't resemble that vegetable from any angle ...I think they are an insult to any lady of this world ..what say ladies ??

But you know what ,it may not be like a lady's finger but it sure is a lady's vegetable ..Why ??

DID YOU KNOW?
  •  It has loads of folate vitamin in it which is good for pregnant women and the baby.
  • According to Southdreamz.com,these vegetables boost sexual vigour and reduces excess blood during menstruation .So,it is very good for ladies at menopausal stage .
  • Not only internally it nourishes, but also externally too,boil it in little water and that water can be used as a last rinse for dandruff free hair and for making it very shiny and jhalke jhalke -bouncy.
Kerala-vendakka-okra-mezhukkupuratti

Now,dear men out there,don't be sad ...Awww..it is good for you too,in fact,for all...
  • Lady's finger is also one of the natural anti-diabetic vegetable available right in nature as it helps in controlling the sugar spike in the body ..
  • It is good for constipation,ulcers,acid reflex and soothes the bowel and the entire gastrointestinal track.
  • It has soluble fibers, so helps in controlling cholesterol and weight loss.
  • It is good for Asthma as well.
  • It has good amount of Vitamin A,vitamin C that can help in reducing the risk of any type of cancer. 
  • It is also good for eyes ,bones and skin.
 In US,UK,Philippines,lady's finger is known as Okra .In Hindi it is called,"Bhindi",in Malayalam,it is called,"Vendakka".So,today I am going to share a very simple Okra recipe,Vendakka Mezhukkupuratti in Kerala style ,a lady's finger stir fry in Kerala style.Not only that I will also show you how to make the okra less slimy or sticky .So,please watch my video that includes the recipe and will also show you how to make a very simple lady's finger stir fry ...


Wish my fingers really looked like those lady's finger ,would have come out useful to scare my hubby ...hehahhooooo....

 Eat,love,live deliciously,

05 December 2015

Two ways to make a Banana stem recipe -Vazha Pindi thoran|Vazhaithandu poriyal

 BANANA-STEM-RECIPE


Did you know that a Banana stem is actually not a stem ? According to Specialityproduce.com, A Banana stem is actually a flower stalk of the Banana plant ; The thick stalk grows up from the ground and becomes the backbone of the Banana plant .(Man,like I mentioned in one of my previous post -the Banana blossom/Vazha koombu recipe  ..looks like Banana tree has a complete identity crisis going on inside-out ! :P...) .Thanks Banana tree for making me realize how weak my G.K. is :| and how valuable you are !!

vazha-pindi-thoran-kerala-style

My mom is a big fan of these stems especially.Every single time she comes across this stems errr flower stalks (even if it is a phone conversation) ,her dialogue will be ,"Nallada,nallada,vaiittinnu nallada." meaning "They are really good..especially for your stomach .."

Amma darling is absolutely right it seems because these stems are made up of small fiber compartments .Once you try to chop it ,you will feel like a Dushassana from Mahabharata doing a cheer/vastra-haran of Draupadi (No pun intended !) - undraping/unwrapping its outer layer and its thready fibers from the Banana stem pieces forever .....

And as amma said,they are indeed good for stomach ,like she would always emphasize,they are the best detoxifier available in the nature .Because of their fiber texture ,the health benefits of a Banana stem are quite remarkable.

vazha-thandu-porial-thoran-recipe


DID YOU KNOW ? 
  • According to Ayurveda,Banana stems are diuretic in nature,so it can help in passing or dissolving Kidney stones-even lots of scientific research/studies have proved it .
  • Banana stems also act as laxative so good for curing constipation.
  • They are also good antacids and good for curing ulcers.
  • Just like the Banana,they are loaded with Potassium and Vitamin B6 ,which keeps Blood Pressure in check and also helps in producing Hemoglobin and insulin.
  • They are best for weight loss especially as a natural drink.
 
navdhan-grains-lentils-mix-9-beans-mix
When it comes to making a recipe ,it can come out as little tricky especially,if it's your first time as they are made up thready fibers,and one has to remove them to get to the actual edible parts of the Banana stem. Banana stem recipes are mainly popular in South Indian cuisine ,like vazhaithandu kootu ,vazhaithandu usli,vazahaithandu porial in Tamil Nadu and Thor chapper,in West Bengal.Similarly,in Kerala,we make Vazhapindi thoran or Vazhapindi curry .or Vazha thandu thoran...

So,I've two ways of making a Banana stem recipe with lentils ,coconut and mild spices ...So,pls watch my videos that'll show you how to peel a Banana stem properly and how to make a Banana Stem recipe Kerala style aka VazhaPindi Thoran ...(The Vazha Pindi thoran recipe and method is in the video itself ..)

  1.Vazha Pindi Cherupayar Thoran 

 

    2.Vazha Pindi Navdhan thoran

 



It is amazing how simple yet tasty they are when cooked ; Just as amazing as its identity -  Simple,earthy,Wonder FULL !!

Again,bowing my head ,holding my hands -

Banana Tree namaha !

 



03 December 2015

Parval Aloo Bhujia|Parwal ki sukhi sabji Bihari style|Pointed Gourd recipe


parval-aloo-bhujia-Bihari-style
 
"Parwal or Parval" is the Hindi word for a Pointed Gourd .Whenever I come across this vegetable especially in Indian stores ,which is very rare,I am by default in a trance ,whirling back into my childhood days and I can smell the potol sabji made by my neighbour next door to the left, my dearest ,sweetest ,Late Bengali aunty (RIP!) ,an exceptional cook and another parwal sabji/bhujia by my neighbour next door to the right ,UP wali aunty (who would address my mother as Manoj (my Big bro) ki maa/Mother of Manoj,and it would piss me off a lot  :P).However,UP aunty's recipes were just fingerlicking and made me the  hardcore fan of Bihari cuisine and that definitely gave me the suffice reason to forgive her for not calling my momma ,Manju ki maa ...huhh...;P

pointed-gourd-parwal


Did you know ?
(Credit:Healthbenefitstimes.com)
  • Pointed Gourd is also known as green potato in India . :O
  • Pointed Gourd is filled with essential nutrients and are really good for gastrointestinal problems and liver detoxification.
  • They are good for weight loss,blood purifier,good for skin-hair and fights with aging factor . (I LOVE YOU ..Parval!)
  • They are awesome for diabetes and cholesterol control as well .(Aweeeesome!)
Pointed Gourd ,I believe is the smallest gourd from the Gourd family but its botanical name is definitely long ,"Trichosanthes dioica" ..(I had no idea ,the pet name I gave for this vegetable was actually its scientific name :P)...I've never seen this vegetable in Kerala as far as I remember but I think in Malayalam it is called "Patolam" and in Tamil ,"Kambupudalai",in Telugu,"Kommu Potla / Chedu Potla",in Marathi ,Gujarati,Paraval,"parora" in Bhojpuri, Urdu, and Awadhi,thonde kayi in Kannada,Potol in Bengali or Odia....

parwal-Bengali-style

In fact ,I can't imagine a recipe with pointed Gourd Kerala style ,it better ought to be in North Indian - Bihari or Bengali style ,especially for me.I think my mom used to make a Parval bhujia which was like a fusion of Bihari+Bengali style under the influence of our neighbour aunties,her besties and MAN,it would become from finger licking to plate licking...

SO,here is a very simple yet tasty Bihari style Parval aloo bhujia (stir fry) or say Bengali style Parval ki sabji with aloo aka potato...Very easy to make and it goes awesome with puri/poodi or just roti/chapathi ..I can eat it just like that...

So,pls watch my quickie video that will show how to make a parwal sookhi sabji or Parwal aloo bhujia and the recipe is included in it.



So,proud to have a childhood influenced by multi culture and regions of India .I believe I've a little bit of every state in me...I am a proud Bihariya just as I am a proud Mallu ....Again and again,Thanks to my lovely parents for giving me such a simple,humble yet colorful childhood memories......If I would get a time machine I would like to relive it again..and again and agaiiiiiiin...............Atleast food will always be there to rekindle and reminisce those bygone days....

I miss You,Bokaro




27 November 2015

Nadan Chicken Roast recipe |Chicken Roast Kerala style|Pan fried Chicken roast

chicken-roast-Indian-style

 "There is always,Always,ALWAYS something to be thankful for ." ~ Unknown

That is exactly my life's mantra !! That is exactly my simple prayer to Almighty is !! That is exactly what I remind myself whenever I encounter people or any circumstances that challenge me !! That is exactly no matter where I am in life or what I am,I remind myself of !! That is exactly how I celebrate Thanksgiving silently everyday of my God's gift to me ,this human life !!

And I love it ,when you have a day exclusively dedicated to emphasize it and celebrate it ,"The Thanksgiving !!" .Yep,in US and Canada,it is the pious month of Thanksgiving !  Though it was yesterday,I feel like this whole month is dedicated for the same.

Chicken-roast-recipe

We are living in such a fast world,super fast life that we often knowingly,unknowingly take it for granted, that ,I believe,it is good to have such a day that reminds us to have an attitude of gratitude ,to count our blessings more,life is not perfect ,it wasn't even to the Gods on Earth,that we are imperfectly perfect ,there is already a super power in "I" and  "YOU" ,that the little things in life or little ways can make a big difference in our's and someone's life , and just to be alive,live well and make the most of it ...just be thankful !

nadan-chicken-roast


I am thankful ,to my parents for giving  me this life to experience..

I am thankful to my parents for teaching me to be tolerant of all religion,multi-faceted people
,unfavorable circumstances and giving everything another chance...

I am thankful to my parents to remind me when I forget ,to breathe,to swallow,forgive and forget ..

I am thankful to my parents to keep me grounded,humble,compassionate towards others...

I am thankful to my parents for teaching me to never under estimate myself and others ...

I am thankful to my parents for teaching me ,there is a supreme power watching over us,in front of him you have to kneel down,you are answerable and accountable to your deeds ..

I am thankful to my life partner for his unconditional love ,immense patience and accepting me for the imperfect person I am,for staying by my side through thick and thins...

I am thankful to all those people who directly,indirectly help me,make my life worth(be it a family,friend,a soldier,a scientist,a doctor etc) ,you are my guardian angel from heaven on Earth,also to those who don't ,for proving what kind of person you are and you just made me more stronger ,self-reliable and more wiser ... and my life unpolluted ..without you..

I am thankful for all mistakes and failures,they are my biggest teachers

I am thankful for all good days,reminds me God is kind and for bad days,that reminds me to anticipate,appreciate good days more and keeps my true faith on Lord in check...

I am thankful for each and everyone and everything I have , and trust God blindly for what I need more ..

I am thankful for my life,for every breath I take,for every right decision and action that makes me and others happy..

thatukada-chicken-recipe

However,it may be a thanksgiving for human beings but when it comes to animal kingdom it may not be ...because the main food item that gives a zing to the thanksgiving is nothing but a Turkey .

Did you know ?

45 million turkeys (approx) are killed each year for Thanksgiving alone.:(... It is hard to digest that but may be that's a Turkey's role in the food chain perhaps ...Grateful to them too,I say !!

Anyways, me and my better half are a fan of a living turkey more than a dead one.However,when it comes to chicken ,we are a fan of them irrespectively :P...

So,this Thanksgiving we celebrated it with a spicy yummy chicken roast Kerala style,Naadan chicken roast ..It is a very basic chicken roast recipe yet my best chicken roast recipe ...Very easy to make and very difficult to stop licking fingers and plates ....(That day my stomach growls more and my fingers love getting messy and I don't have to wash my plates :P )

So,this is how I make chicken roast Indian Kerala style in a pan.Pls watch my quick video which has the recipe and shows you the method to do it...


For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food,
For love ,true family & friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
Father in heaven,We thank thee
. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thanks to all who follow this little blog .....



21 November 2015

4 ways/3 recipes to reduce the bitterness of a Bitter Gourd/Bitter Melon/Pavakka kaippu/Pavakka thorans


how-to-reduce-bitterness-of-bitter-gourd
"Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet." ~ Jean-Jacques Rousseau 

If there is any vegetable that really tests any person's (almost) patience from buying it,cooking it ,consuming it ,then that ought to be a Bitter Melon/Bitter Gourd.Pavakka in Malayalam , Karela in Hindi and Momordica charantia ,the botanical name (Man, that's how I cuss a Bitter Gourd !)

Well,the reason is simple, majority of people may ignore it because of its bitterness except my better 1/2 (the only person I know) ,who can gulp down the entire raw juice as if it is the elixir of life ...(Good for you Honey P !) .In fact,I don't argue with that, as the health benefits of the Bitter Gourd indeed makes it a BETTER Gourd and ultimately, our health - SWEET and nourishing !!

Bitter-melon-recipes-pavakka-thoran-kerala-style

DID YOU KNOW?
  1. According to the nutrition-and-you.com,Bitter Gourd is a member of the same family as Squash,Watermelon,Cantaloupes,Cucumber etc. (Now,don't make me hate those other veges!). 
  2. Bitter Melon is a natural insulin that helps in preventing Diabetes.(Bitterness to combat over-sweetness..hmm..Interesting!!).
  3. It is also a good Liver detoxifier and helps in keeping the digestive system intact,keeps the skin problems at bay,makes the skin glow(Read:Ditch those fairness creams-Fair & Lovely creams -Go go !) and helps in weight loss (Now we are talking !).
  4. They are an excellent source of Folate/Folic Acid which is really good for pregnant ladies and the baby.(Will it make the baby bitter??:0)) .
  5. It also has a moderate dose of Vitamin B complex such as Niacin(Vitamin B-3,Panthothenic acid (Vitamin B-5),Pyridoxine (Vitamin B-6 and minerals such as Iron,Zinc,Potassium,Manganese and Magnesium.(Awesome I say !!)
  6. It also has Vitamin C and Falvanoids which keeps the radicals in the body in check .(Good good !!).
  7. The research suggests that the Phyto-chemicals compounds in Bitter Gourd might be effective in the treatment of HIV infection.(That sounds promising - poor BG,I totally misunderstood you !!).
  8. However,too much is not recommended as it may be intolerant for some people .(Like me??)
 NOW,it sounds less bitter..A'int it ?? In addition to that,here are my ways ,tips and tricks to reduce the bitterness of a Bitter Gourd and make it quite tasty and tolerable to eat without missing those loaded health benefits for sure.

1.Pls watch my quick video that shows how to reduce the bitterness of a bitter melon :


Now comes the Bitter Melon recipes that enhances the tastes of the Bitter Gourd by reducing the bitterness.

2. Carrot Pavakka thoran Kerala style,a Bitter Melon stir fry recipe with Carrots and Coconut ...
pavakka-bitter-gourd-recipe-carrot-thoran

Recipe and Method : Pls watch my quick video .


3.Beetroot Pavakkai thoran Kerala style,a Bitter Gourd/Karela recipe with Beetroot and Coconuts................
pavakka-thoran-beetroot-thoran-recipe

Recipe and method : Pls watch the video for the same.


4.Carrot-Beetroot-Pavakka Thoran Kerala Style,a Bitter Melon Kerala special recipe with Beetroot,Carrot and Coconut....
Bitterless-pavakka-thoran-recipe

Ingredients - (Carrot,grated - 1-2 nos,Beetroots,grated-1-2 nos,Pavakka/Bitter Gourd ,grated - 1 no,Coconut ,grated - 1 cup,Onion,chopped - 1/2 cup,Curry leaves,a few,Coconut oil - 1 tbsp,mustard seeds - 1 tsp)
Method: Heat oil in a pan,splutter mustard seeds,add chopped onions,let it become soft then add the grated bitter Gourd,carrot and beetroot,cover until cooked,remove the lid,add the coconut and curry leaves)

So,basically the sweetness of Carrots and or Beetroots,Onions and Coconut helps in mellow down the bitterness of the Bitter Gourd to a large extent and their addition makes it more healthier too.I believe these recipes will be helpful especially to make kids eat those vege alligators without a miss...well,this is what I do to reduce the bitterness of karela/Bitter Gourd and make them bitter-less and tasteful .

Life is like a Bitter gourd,at times it may not look good,taste good but it does have a better/brighter side to it- we have to taste the bitterness first ,to know that.Isn't it ??

With bitter errr better regards,


17 November 2015

Vazha koombu thoran |Banana Blossom thoran|Banana Flower stir fry recipe Kerala style|Vazhaipoo poriyal|Mocha recipe

vazha-koomb-thoran-kerala-style


Did you know that a Banana tree is not a tree technically ????...A banana tree is actually a perennial herb and what appears to be the trunk is actually a ,"False stem"- they are nothing but leaves twisting and turning around each other to form a stem that can be approx 12 inches thick and can grow up to 40 feet tall.


Whoaa!..Then that should be one heck of a herb !! Anyways,thanks Wiki for enriching my G.K. !!

In my native place,Kerala, which is a hub of coconut trees swaying in every nook and corner ,if there is any other tree that can be deemed as the tough competitor to those coconut trees,then I believe it should be the "Banana trees...errr...Banana herb/plant".

how-to-peel-Banana-Blossom
Almost every household in Kerala has a Banana plant in their backyard ...Even in North India,we use to have one ...In North India,a Banana plant is worshipped as it is believed that Lord Vishnu resides in this plant ..In South India,it is more like an anna daaneshwari meaning "A provider of food" ! ...Each and every part of this plant is used in various ways especially in culinary area .

The leaves are used as a wrapper to make many one-of-a-kind dishes ; During olden days people used to even wrap their entire food in those leaves instead of a tiffin box and it just made the food taste more flavorful....The stems were used in making many recipes as well,the fruits -Green or Yellow Banana were used to eat simply or as any other recipes ,similarly ,the heart of Banana,the Banana flowers are also used for making many homely yet tasty dishes...

koomb-thoran


Not only that,just like any other herbs or vegetables they are loaded with many vitamins ,minerals,fibers and protein and render lots of health benefits :

DID YOU KNOW ?
(Credit :Livingstrong.com and Stylecraze.com)
  1. Banana Flowers can lower especially -Diabetes,Cholesterol,Blood Pressure,Infections,Anemia.
  2. Banana Blossoms are anti-inflammatory,anti-depressants,anti-aging and anti-cancer .
  3. Banana Blossoms are a superfood for women especially - it helps in keeping the uterus healthy,managing the PCOS(Polycycstic Ovarian Syndrome) ,irregular menses and according to HimalayanHomeRemedies.com,one cooked banana flower + 1 cup yogurt/curd can reduce the heavy menstruation by increasing the level of progesterone hormone .They also increase the milk production in lactating mothers.
WOW!! ...This was one vegetable I dared to cook for a long time .Why ? Well..because I was not sure of how to peel/cut a Banana Blossom properly .If not done properly,there is no doubt that the recipe will be horrible to taste and apt for feeding the cattle only.It is little tricky like the plant's identity itself I believe, but not anymore,now I know how to cut a Banana flower and I've also recorded it so that it will be helpful to any newly weds /very novice cooks especially.SO,please watch my quick video that will demo how to peel a Vaazha Koombu (in Malayalam) a.k.a Banana Flower properly in Kerala style ...This is how, it is done at my place.


Now ,once you know how to cut the Banana Blossom,it is very easy to make any recipe .So,I am gonna share how to make a Vazha Koombu thoran/Banana Blossom recipe ,a stir fry with coconut lentil and mild spices .It is very easy ,tasty and more healthy.

So,please watch the video below which has the recipe in it,so lazy me is not gonna write it again here .So,this is how I make a Vazha koombu thoran /Vazhachundu thoran/ Naadan Kudappan thoran Kerala style recipe at home...


Undoubtedly,a Banana plant deserves to be worshipped ,an unconditional provider for overall consumption and a treasure house of health benefits it is ...

Banana Plant ki Jai hoooo...








P.S.: Two ways to make Banana stem/Vazha pindi thoran

10 November 2015

Quick sugarfree low calorie Aata sheera|Wheat dessert|Edible Diwali diyas/lamps


edible-diwali-diya

 "Patakka" (In Hindi) or "A Bomb" (in English) ! are the slang, people or guys and even hatti-katti ladki/fatabulous girls like me use, when we see a lean girl walking beside us in a cute little flirty dress or ripped shorts that gives her an extra oomph .Well,good for her but we do secretly envy her and then there are those who are like that but they eat like a horse and me ,don't eat for a week and I'll be 1 kilo more ...envious-wise too....(There is also a similar word in Malayalam starts with "V",which I don't want to use as I feel it is so disrespectful and tasteless compared to the Hindi and English versions ..)

Shubh Deepawali !!
When it is festival and you are away from your motherland,festival seems to be less in air and more at home . So,to celebrate the festival,you end up giving your home a spic and span makeover - decorate it with lights,arts and crafts,shop without any excuse,make sweets and desserts a lot emphasizing it is festival after all and enjoy it with family and friends together ...

And people cursed with sweet tooth like me will be like ,"OH YESssss !" ..."How can I be behind ?"...Then my mirror reminds me,"Remember the outcome of the last festival sweet - cheeks as chubby as those rasogullas and overall,a ladoo appearance ?" ..Now I am intimidated but my never-give-up attitude starts itching too and then I torture my brain to wake up and come up with something sweet but somehow healthy....

aata-ka-sheera-recipe


This is what is happening to me right now .As it is Diwali - the festival of lights in India -where all kinds of light from electricity to earthen lamps to candles are used exceedingly to signify ,"Light over darkness - good over evil " and to enhance the celebration  - pattakas/bombs a.k.a. firecrackers are used all night non-stop by all as if to to let the whole world know it is Diwaliiiii .

This is the day when India is glorified to its best, which is visible even from the space -all glittering as if stars have shifted down to the Earth....and what more, it is celebrated by all religions equally and lots of other festivals fall on that day or a day more or less .So,it is like in Hindi we say,a double dhamaka - More the merrier ! Diwali is celebrated the best in states away from South India....

diwali-sweet-diya

However,though it is fun ,it can come with a price - Air and sound pollution which can badly impact our already struggling Planet Earth and I believe,it is our dire responsibility to do anything to protect our Mother nature and our beautiful green Planet Earth...We don't have to undermine our tradition but I believe we can strive to make it eco-friendly somehow like -
  • Use less electricity /electric lights or decorations and replacing with our simple yet traditional earthen lamps,it will save money as well.
  • Reuse the oil we used for deep frying or cooking in the earthen lamps...
  • I don't believe in a cracker-less Diwali ,if there are no crackers ,then what is the whole point of Diwali,it will be like just another festival or like I feel here --"Is it really Diwali?",as we can't use any firecrackers or hardly anyone would go to that extent ..BUT then we can use eco-friendly crackers and use a few comparatively and be careful not to harm us or others in the process/fun...
  • Use healthy sweets and snacks mostly so that everyone including old,ill,obese enjoys equally...
So,this Diwali,I made these low calorie,sugar free sweet/dessert "Aata ka sheera/a.k.a Multigrain flour dessert " in Microwave in just 4 minutes and moreover I turned them into my kind of an eco- friendly edible diyas /lamps like two-in-one :D...like eat it and "Light from inside is more important from light on outside .":P..

So,pls watch my video that will demo how to make a low calorie and sugarfree quick Aata ka sheera in microwave in just 4 minutes and edible Diwali special diyas within 10-30 minutes .(Your cooking time may vary as per your microwave)


Have a SAFE and sound Diwali...Enjoy but don't end joy ...

Take care,



05 November 2015

How well do you know your Pressure Cooker ?

all-about-a-pressure-cooker
A confused girl (like me) calling a Pressure Cooker manufacturer-"Hello ! The thing that whistles is missing.I want a spare !" ..Wrong guy & confused picks up- "Hello Ma'am.I'm already,will I be ok ?"

As I said in my previous post,if there is any cookware that is abUSED in my lab of edible experiments ,the kitchen,then that ought to be my mighty "Pressure Cooker !" . That was one of the cookware I brought with me for sure when I first came to US,the one I ,most of the time, buy whenever I visit India,the one if someone visits India from US,my parents would ask me if I want one,the one that scares my hubby whenever I am scanning the cookware section of any supermarket,the one which eventually becomes handicapped/with missing parts within a short period of time -the ONE and only my mighty "Pressure Cooker".

A handful of P.C. and its weights I own-between me and U....
I love my pressure cooker a lot because it just decreases the pressure of cooking for me meaning helps me in reducing the cooking time yet makes healthy (because of its steaming properties,it retains the minerals and vitamins of any vegetables cooked so) and tasty dishes fast for my family .So,I use them a lot ,abuse them a lot,eventually it becomes partially or completely useless and if it is completely useless, I end up buying another one but if a part is not working and can be replaced then I go for that option better ,but then the real problem arises ; Well,when a part of my pressure cooker is missing or should be replaced , I would be left wondering ,"What the heck is it called ?"

Then I ask my mom as usual ,confuse her too but later on somehow we would figure it out that we both are talking about the same part ,but then with a lapse of time, my memory also lapses and I would often ,either totally forget the name or get confuse with the name like the "weight" and the "Valve" for example.Then I would thank God that I've internet and my darlo Google ,that would later clarify my doubts and ease the pressure cooking in my brain...

So,I realized it's high time and since I've a blog I must store the details of this cookware and soothe the pressure not only in cooking but also in my mind and even for blogging purpose .So that ,next time ,I must not torture my mother or a friend or even Google ..Peace to all !!

So,here are the all abouts' of a pressure cooker- the vital knicks and knacks of a pressure cooker - or say,an Anatomy of a humble pressure cooker :

An Indian Pressure Cooker ! Image credit :Hawkins

Pressure-cooker-parts
An American Pressure cooker -Image :Presto's

Obviously,I owned both of them .Very soon I will be opening an antique showroom displaying the pressure cookers I owned till date .But I am learning to be more careful now -the optimum utilization of available resources in a cost efficient way....

So,here are the other important points to remember :
  •  Before using it for the first time or after every use,always wash the lid ,the gasket,the weight and the body in little soapy warm water.The safety valve should be clean and shouldn't be obstructed with any left over food particles.
  • Any label can be removed from the cooker like the price tag etc using a vegetable oil on it or using warm water over it.
  • Always cook with water,cut the vegetables or any meats in uniform sizes and never cook food beyond the 2/3rd level of the pressure cooker's capacity.
  • Never throw the instruction booklet that came with it (if you do,ask me,I've a set of them now piling up)and always refer for the optimum use of the cooker otherwise you will keep on buying like me :D .
Now,I can stop playing Pictionary and start referring this Pressure Cooker Dictionary forever stored in my virtual space !

With pressure whoops pleasure ,