Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Sorekayi/Bottle gourd/Lauki_Channa Curry

According to my mom, Sorekayi/Lauki/Bottle gourd is some wonder vegetable. She says, and she heard somewhere(Baba Ramdev, I think), that no part of this vegetable should be thrown out. So I use it often... though only in south Indian curries and sambars, which only go well with rice and not necessarily chapathis. 

This recipe is more North Indian(like a sabzi) and could be eaten with Chapathis as well. It is very simple tasting, as well as easy to cook. Requires less oil, and tastes great.

Enjoy this healthy sabzi with chapathi/rice. 

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Low Fat Okra Fries

Happy New Year!!

Made any resolutions yet? Is losing weight one of them by any chance ;).. 
It was always on my list until one fine day I decided not to believe in making resolutions anymore :) If it’s going to happen.. it’s going to happen.. right? I don’t need to reserve one day for making resolutions and then the whole year for regretting for not keeping up with it ;) 

Anyways, if you are still making resolutions, and if eating healthy is one of them, then please do try these low fat okra fries.. they are yummy!

Okra has always been hit and miss for me.. okra dry sabzis are okay, but the moment you introduce any water into it, like in sambar, they become very slimy.. sometimes very very slimy, and this after taking all precautions that I know of.. 
So when I came across this promising recipe of okra, I tried it immediately.. and boy oh boy! does it taste good!! There is almost no oil in it, and still it tastes so crispy and crunchy!
My daughter just kept asking for more and more.. 
This is definitely a keeper of a recipe!

All you need to do is toss cut okra in bajji/pakoda flour and microwave them.. it’s that simple.. 

Do give it a try! 

Monday, December 22, 2014

Eggless Fruit Cake

It’s impressive how our elders insist on fresh food all the time, even on bakery items, which have pretty good shelf life. I remember, whenever we craved for some bakery food in the evenings, my mom would send my brother to get some freshly made stuff from the bakery. Fruit cake was always on my list. My mom would specifically instruct my brother to ask for fresh loaf of bread or any stuff; if it were an old batch he may not buy it. Packaged food was never appreciated. After coming to US, of course, all my “fresh food” privileges got hit. The packaged fruit cake available here in Indian stores doesn’t even come close to the fresh ones I used to gobble up back home. They were/are so bad that one would just give up the idea of eating it, than getting used to the taste of it. Few years back, when I came across this fruit cake recipe, I was more than eager to try it out. Who knows, if it clicks then I don’t have to wait to go to India to eat it again. And it did click! Actually it came out better than my expectations. Since it is eggless, many of those who don’t prefer a strong egg smell(particularly in fruit cakes) can also enjoy it. 

Only after coming to US did I realize that this cake is associated with Christmas. 

Make one right now and enjoy your holidays! 

Merry Christmas!!!

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Black Eyed Beans Vada

I don't know about you, but for me, deciding on what to cook is a nightmare!

My bookmark folder has grown so big that it needs another bookmark folder to sort it out. It's growing like Hanumanthana baala... it's becoming so taxing just going over the list. 

Whenever I find anything interesting I bookmark and then basically forget about it. Not only that, I also buy cook books whenever I come across anything interesting. Between these two humongous lists, I often get lost and sometimes get a head ache looking for something interesting to cook. Oh, the tragedy! 

When I saw this vada on my friend’s FB page, my memory was refreshed about this recipe that I had bookmarked long time ago. And so it got bumped up to the top on my todo list. So the next time when I got an opportunity to make an appetizer for a potluck, instead of going over and over again on my lengthy list, I instantly decided on this..

The vada is very much similar to Ambode(masala vada), except that, instead of using chana dal, it uses black eyed beans. Black eyed beans gives this a slightly soft texture compared to chana dal. 

Do try!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Dal Bukhara - Urad dal curry

Coming from South India, I'm alien to black urad dal... we hardly use any black urad dal in our regular cooking... the few places that we use them(that too de-skinned urad dal), is in making tadka, then the regular idli, dosa and stuff. 
In fact, I was really surprised when I first found out about its usage in curries!! I would’ve never guessed in a million years that out of all the dals, urad dal is the one used in my favorite dal makhni!! This after devouring dal makhni every time I went to North Indian restaurants back in India... such was my dispassion towards cooking :) *Sigh* how I've changed!!

The taste of black urad dal is such that, if you don’t get the masala right, then the taste of the urad dal becomes very overpowering. This is one of the few recipes of black urad dal that I’ve tried and liked.. the curry comes out very creamy despite the lack of any added cream.

Do try!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Pink Fruit Custard

Now that the Indian festivals are all over, it’s time to welcome the Holiday Season in the US. It’s time for parties, gatherings, costume parties and of course all the potlucks. 

This particular recipe is “inspired” from so many sources that I hardly remember where I got it from(kinda like movie Barfi :D)

The pink hue and a hint of rose essence gives the plain old custard an oomph factor. 

It's a great item to take for a potluck. Impress your friends and family with this pink fruit custard. 


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Vanilla - Chocolate Barfi

Check out these Vanilla-Chocolate Barfis! pretty fancy, eh?

I tried them for the first time and they came out pretty good. 

I saw this recipe online in one of my favorite blogs. I followed the recipe verbatim. This blogger always puts step by step recipes with pictures. It’s really hard to mess it up.

These barfis are not only awesome looking, they are awesome tasting too.. and they are pretty easy to make with just a few ingredients.

Enjoy Diwali with these homemade barfis. Happy Deepavali!!