Category Archives: Dry

Microwave Ladies Finger Fry

IMG_4402My hubby loves ladies finger, even If I cook It daily he will be happy. For me more than cooking ladies finger pre work is the one which demands a lot of time – Washing and patting well with a dry cloth or dry in a paper towel for a longtime. These days with my little one running around my legs I find it difficult to do the steps my mother usually does to avoid mushy ladies finger. As I mentioned in my Bhindi Masala, microwave helps me to skip those steps. One  day when I had microwaved ladies finger, I thought of giving a try with cooking the entire curry in microwave and it worked.

Ingredients:

Chopped Ladies Finger – 2 cups

Sambar powder/ chilli powder – 1 tsp  ( I used Sambar powder)

Coriander Powder – 1/4 tsp

Cumin powder – 1/8 tsp

Rice flour – 1/8 tsp

Asofetida – generous pinch

Curd – 1/2 tsp

Salt – to taste

Oil – 1/2 tbsp

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Method:

  • In a small bowl combine sambar powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, rice flour, asofetida and salt
  • Cut the washed ladies finger into small pieces and place them in a paper towel. In a bowl add oil and ladies finger; mix well

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  • Microwave them for 3 minutes, take out and add curd. mix well. Microwave for another 3 – 4 minutes till the mushy texture changes
  • Add the spice powder mix and combine well

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  • Microwave for 6 – 8 minutes or till the bhindi cooks well with spice powders flavors well incorporated. Serve it with rice/roti

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My Notes:

  • Can do tempering separately and add it to the curry but I skipped it
  • Curd is optional. Add it of you thinks Okra is very sticky than usual
  • Can bake ladies finger instead of using microwave method. Bake it for 375 degree Fahrenheit 20 to 25 minutes if its cut like this. If  cut pieces are lengthy baking time changes
  • Can add coconut for extra taste during the last minute
  • Can cut ladies finger into big pieces, slit and stuff the spice powder
  • Can add garam masala, chat masala or any other spice powder of choice
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Vazhakkai Varuval

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I am not a big fan of Plantain, occasionally I buy it. In our home we generally prepare Vazhakkai podimas or Vazhakkai podi curry as side dish for rice. This particular preparation I learnt from my friend’s mom and I liked it, so started cooking this frequently. This is similar to Plaintain chips but marinated and cooked
Vazhakkai Varuval
Ingredients

Vazhakkai (Raw banana) – 1, peeled and thinly sliced

Ginger garlic paste  – 1/4 tsp

Coriander powder – 1/2 tsp

Cumin powder – 1/4 tsp

Red chilli powder – 1/4 tsp (Adjust according to your taste)

Turmeric powder – 1/8 tsp

Garam masala –  1/8 tsp 

Asofetida/Hing(Perungayam) – pinch

Salt – as needed

Oil – 2 tsp

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 Method:
  • Parboil the raw banana ( I microwaved them for 5 minutes. You can also boil it in a cup of water until soft). Strain the water and keep aside
  • In a mixing bowl add raw banana, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, garam masala, coriander powder, cumin powder, ginger garlic paste, garam masala, asofetida and salt. Mix gently and Marinate them for atleast 30 minutes

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  • Heat the pan and brush (add) oil to the pan (Dosai tawa can also be used)  when the oil is hot, add the marinated raw banana slices and cook on both sides until they are golden brown

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My Notes:
  • Instead of shallow frying can also deep fry the plantains
  • Can keep the marination in refrigerator if you are running out of time

Avarakkai Kadala Paruppu Curry

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Usually my Amma prepares Avarakkai without adding onion. During my schools days, when mom is out of station, we used to have meals in “Data Udipi Hotel” in Chennai. One day, Avarakkai curry was there in the menu. After seeing that, I was totally disappointed, as I was expecting some fried stuff like Potato, Plaintain etc. But after tasting the curry, I was pleasantly surprised with the taste. I never tasted this combo before – onion, dal and coconut in Avarakkai curry, with coconut oil flavor. Since I liked the taste my Amma use to re-create their preparation in her own style. This side dish goes well any Rice Accompaniment.

Avarakkai Kadala Parappu Curry

Preparation time: 10 mins | Cook Time: 20 mins | SoakingTime :10 mins | Serves: 3

Recipe Category: Side dish

Ingredients

Avarakkai / Broad beans – 2 cups, chopped

Channa dal – 1/4 cup

Grated coconut – 4 tbsp 

Onion – 1, finely chopped

Coconut Oil – 1 tsp

Mustard seeds – 1/8 tsp

Urad dal – 1/4 tsp

Channa dal – 1/4 tsp

Green chillies – 1

Curry leaves – 1 sprig

Asafoetida – a pinch

Salt – as needed

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Method

  • Soak Channa dal in Luke warm water for 10 minutes
  • Cook Broad beans and Channa dal (can cook in boiling water or microwave for 8 – 10 minutes) and strain the water

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  • Add oil to the pan, and when it is hot, add the mustard seeds, urad dal and channa dal. After the dal turns light brown color, add red chillis and  curry leaves. Add onion and cook till onions are translucent

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  • Add the cooked Broad beans and channa dal to the onions and cook for 2 -3 minutes. Add coconut and saute for a minute and switch off

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Pattani Sundal (Frozen Green Peas Sundal)

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Yesterday evening after returning from work hubby asked what Sundal today. I had planned to prepare Moong Dal Sundal, but then I realized I forgot to soak Dal. Then I remembered I had some frozen peas.  Amma use to prepare Sundal with dry peas by soaking and pressure cooking them, but I thought of trying with frozen peas. Sundal was ready in 5 minutes – quickest Sundal I ever had

Pattani Sundal

Preparation Time : 3 min | Cooking time : 5 mins | Serves : 2

Recipe Category : Appetizer/Snack

Ingredients:

Frozen peas – 1 cup + 1/2 cup

Salt – To taste

Grated coconut – 1/3 cup

Green chillies – 1 (Adjust according to your taste)

Coriander leaves – 4 – 5 sprig

Ginger –  small piece ( approx 1/2 tsp)

To Temper:

Coconut Oil – 1 tsp

Mustard seeds – 1/4 tsp

Urad Dal – 1 tsp

Channa Dal – 1/2 tsp

Curry leaves – 1/2 sprig

Red chilli – 1

Hing – a generous pinch

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Method:

  • Microwave peas for a minute and set aside

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  • Blend coriander, chilli and coconut without adding water

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  • Add oil to the pan, when the oil is hot add the items under ‘To Temper’ and let them crackle. Add the green peas and salt, toss them for a minute

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  • Add the blended mixture and sautè for 2-3 minutes till raw smell goes off. Switch off the stove

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My Notes:

  • Coconut oil gives nice aroma for sundal, so it is preferred
  • If you are using Dry Peas, then soak them overnight, or at least for 4 hrs in warm water.  Pour enough water and pressure cook for 3 whistles
  • Instead of adding coconut mixture at the end, you can also add after tempering

Gobi 65 – Baked

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Ever since I had this dish for the first time, I have been having a big question in my mind – why is it named 65?. As I mentioned in Cauliflower Peas Masala, cauliflower is my sister’s favorite veggie, and this is her default order in most restaurants.  First time when I tried baking cauliflower, it was total flopshow. Invited Hubby’s friends for dinner and  thought of baking this. That day I added yellow corn meal. I marinated cauliflower for 2 hours, it was soggy and I didn’t get proper fries, then I did some gimmick and managed. Again I wanted to try this with white corn flour, and reduce my marination time, and finally succeeded!

Gobi 65 – Baked

Preparation Time : 10 mins | Standing time – 15 minutes | Cooking Time : 20 – 25 mins

Recipe Category: Snack

Ingredients:

Cauliflower -1 medium sized flower

Cornflour – 1/4 cup

Rice flour/ All purpose flour – 2 tbsp (I used rice flour)

Ginger Garlic paste – 1/4 tsp

Red chilli powder – 1/2 tsp (Adjust according to your taste)

Garam Masala – 1/8 tsp

Oil – 1 tbsp + 1 tsp

Turmeric powder – a pinch

Salt – to taste

Oil/Cooking spray – to grease (I used Pam olive oil spray)

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Method:

  • Parboil cauliflower and strain them

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  • Preheat the oven to 400 degree Fahrenhait and place the baking paper (I used Aluminum foil) on baking tray and grease

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  • Combine all spice powder and mix well. Add cornflour and rice flour and mix well, and if required sprinkle some water (I used around 1 tsp) and let it marinate for 15 minutes

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  •  Place the marinated cauliflower and bake them for 10 – 15 minutes and broil for 13 -18 minutes, turning in between

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My Notes :

  • Broil helps to get the fry texture so don’t skip it. Can broil for some more minutes if you need it crispier
  • After turning the oven to broil, keep monitoring frequently to avoid burnt texture
  • Avoid overlapping for even cooking
  • If there is excess moisture, they turn out to be sticky. So avoid adding much water, also grease the foil throughout to avoid sticking
  • Alternatively, you can also deep fry them in oil
  • Ajwain can be added while marinating cauliflower
  • Chat Masala or any spice powder can be added for taste

Brussel Sprouts Masala

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Two years back, I had brussel sprouts for the first time. One of my friends invited us for dinner, and she prepared an amazing south indian spread. When I saw brussel sprouts, I told my friend that I have never seen small cabbage like this. She told its called ‘Brussel sprouts’. She had prepared them with cumin and pepper powder. I loved it.  That week when we went to buy veggies, I was searching for this and got a pack.  Knowing all its healthy benefits Started cooking them regularly, vitamin A, vitamin C, folic acid and dietary fiber – so many good things about this vegetable. This version goes well with both rice and Chappati.

Brussel Sprouts Masala:

Preparation Time : 10 min | Cooking Time : 20 – 25 mins | Serves : 3

Recipe Category: Side dish

Ingredients:

Brussel Sprouts – 1 lb

Onion – 1 big, finely chopped

Tomato – 2

Ginger garlic paste- 1 tsp

Garam Masala powder- 1 tsp

Smabar powder /Red chilli powder – 1 tsp (I used sambar powder)

Coriander powder – 1/2 tsp

Cumin powder – 1/4 tsp

Turmeric powder – 1/8 tsp

Oil – 1 tsp

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Method:

  • Wash and remove a layer of leaves from the top and slit the sprouts, without cutting fully

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  • Add oil to the pan, when the oil is hot add ginger garlic paste and sauté for 30 seconds. Add onions and saute till onions are cooked, and then add tomato
  • After onions and tomato are cooked, add garam masala, coriander powder, cumin powder, sambar powder, turmeric powder and allow it to cook for 2-3mins

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  • Add the Brussel sprouts and Sauté well, and add required salt. Sprinkle some water and cover it with a lid and cook

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  •  Cook till Brussels sprouts are cooked well and Masala is well coated

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My Notes:

  • This dish goes well with plain/ variety rice  as well as with chappati
  • Instead of dry Masala, you can add water/ yogurt/ milk/fresh cream and make a gravy
  • Can add 1 tsp of tamrind pulp to make a tangy masala

Kondakadalai Sundal

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Today being Varalakshmi Pooja, I had prepared Sweet Kozhukkatai, Sundal, Wheat Appam and paruppu Payasam. Kondakadalai Sundal is also prepared during Vinayaka Chaturthi and Navarathri. It goes well with rice and as a tea time snack. Previously I had posted Channa Masala with kondakadalai, and this sundal is a no-onion no-garlic version, as it is prepared for pooja. Knowing today is pooja day, many of my friends asked for Kozhukattai recipe, knowing I would have prepared that. But to update the notes better, and to make a detailed recipe, I need to discuss with two Kozhukattai experts (my Mom and Mother in Law). Recipes for Sweet Kozhukattai and paruppu Payasam are coming soon.

Kondakadalai Sundal

Preparation Time : 5 min | Soaking Time : 8 hrs | Cooking Time : 25 min | Serves : 3

Recipe Category : Appetizer/Snack

Ingredients:

Chickpeas/Kondakadalai/Channa- 1 cup

Shredded Coconut (Fresh/Frozen) – 3 tbsp

Salt – as needed

To Temper:

Mustard Seeds – 1/4 tsp

Urad dal – 1/2 tsp

Dry Red chillies – 2

Channa Dal – 1/2 tsp

Curry leaves – 1 spring

Hing/Asefotida – generous pinch

Coconut Oil- 1 tsp

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Method:

  • Soak  Channa overnight, or at least for 8 hours. Drain the water, add 3 cups of fresh water and pressure cook for 3 whistles. Once the cooker comes to room temperature drain the water and keep Channa aside

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  • Add oil to the pan, when the oil is hot add ‘to temper’ items let it crackle
  • Add  chana and required amount of salt and mix well and cook it on low flame for 2 mins. Add coconut and saute for a minute and switch off

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My Notes:

  • Coconut oil gives nice aroma for sundal, so it is preferable
  • Tinned Chickpea can also be used
  • Instead of adding coconut at the end, you can also add after tempering