Monday, October 11, 2021

Paal Kesari | Milk Kesari | Milk Halwa | Sweet Recipe

Paal Kesari, a delicious and easy to make sweet pudding with semolina, milk and flavored with cardamom & ghee. Traditionally, for kesari, water is used to cook the semolina. But for this kesari, milk is fully used to cook the kesari. 

Using milk for cooking the semolina gives great flavor and is rich in taste. And also, here in this milk kesari, i have avoided using any food color like traditional kesari and want to keep that rich cream color as it is. But if you like bright colored kesari, you can add a pinch of orange or red food color in this kesari too.

In our home, kesari is one of the common sweets that we used to prepare for serving with breakfast or as an evening snack. We all loved it very much and this milk kesari is our recent favorite. 

Before moving on to the recipe, let's answer some of the FAQs about kesari. 

What is the proportion of semolina to milk in this kesari?
For all types of semolina / rava kesari, the proportion of rava to liquid ratio is 1:2. The liquid may be water,  milk or any puree like mango or pineapple.

What type of milk is best for this kesari ?
I have used full fat milk for richness. But you can also use 2% milk or even you can use 1/2 amount of milk and 1/2 amount of water for this kesari.

Any other tips for beginners ?

Here are a few tips to make perfect kesari 
  • Make sure to roast the rava till it's aromatic without changing its color.
  • Make sure that the milk is hot while pouring into the rava, it will avoid the lump formation.
  • Add the sugar only when the rava is completely cooked and the milk is all absorbed.
  • If you like to cut the kesari into pieces, pour the kesari onto the ghee creased plate and let it cool for about 30 mins. It would firm up nicely and you can cut into desired shapes.
Hope i have answered almost all the FAQs about kesari, now let's see how to make this delicious rava kesari.  

Paal Kesari | Milk Kesari | Milk Halwa

Preparation Time : 5 mins | Cooking Time : 20 minsServes :
Recipe Category: Sweet | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
Paal Kesari, Paal Halwa, Milk Kesari, Milk Halwa Paal Kesari, a delicious and easy to make sweet pudding with semolina, milk and flavored with cardamom & ghee.
Rava /Semolina - 1/2 cup
Sugar - 1/2 cup
Milk - 1 cup
Ghee - 3 tbsp
Cashews - 5 
Cardamom powder - 1/4 tsp

Heat the pan with 1 tbsp of ghee and then add the broken cashews and roast till they are golden brown.
Keep the flame in medium and add the rava and roast until they are aromatic.
By the side, heat the milk in a sauce pan and bring into boil. Then pour the milk into the roasted rava slowly with one hand and mix it with another hand. 
With a min, the milk would be absorbed by the rava and it's all well cooked, then add the sugar. 
The rava mixture starts to loosen a bit because of sugar and then start thicken again. Once it became like a thick mass, add a tbsp of ghee at a time and mix it well.
Finally add the cardamom powder, mix it well and switch off the flame.
Tasty Paal Kesari is ready to serve.

Related : How to make Mango Kesari

  • When you pour milk in to the rava, be careful, it splatter a lot, use long handle spoon helps to mix easily.
  • Both the milk and rava should be hot, so that no lumps will be formed.
  • Here i have used whole milk, but you can 2% milk also or you can use 1/2 quantity of  milk & 1/2 water.
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Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Palkova Mothagam | Khoya Modak

Palkova Mothagam is also known as khoya modak or palkova kozhukattai is a sweet dumpling made from the rice flour dough as outer cover and milk solids as inner filling.  It's super easy to make these kozhukattai provided that you have palkova in your hands and it's lip smacking delicious ! 

For Ganesh Chathurthi, sweetened chana dal and  coconut are the most popular filling in making these kozhukattai. But for a quick and easier version, you can try these palkova kozhukattai. 

Before moving on to the recipe, let's check out the FAQs about making kozhukattai.

Palkova Kozhukattai

What type of rice flour is good for making kozhukattai?

Pacharisi / Raw rice flour is the most commonly used flour for making kozhukattai. You can make your  own rice flour at home or use the store bought flour. 

If you're buying from the store, make sure that the rice flour is very fine. Usually it's available in the market in the name of kozhukattai maavu or idiyappam flour.

In our home, while we grew up, Amma always made dough from idli rice batter for both kozhukattai and idiyappam. The flavor and the texture are so unique compared to rice flour dough. 

Related : How to make kozhukattai dough using idli rice 

Related : Video Recipe : Wet batter method for making kozhukattai dough

PalkovaWhy can't I shape the modak / mothagam ?
Dough consistency is the key to making modak shapes easily. There are a couple of things to be taken care of for making the dough. Those are 
  • Rice flour should be fine enough such that adding hot water into the flour makes it almost cooked. 
  • Almost cooked rice flour is pliable and easy to make shapes. Otherwise you can't make shapes and the dough would be easily breakable. 
  • Water should be boiled for making the dough.
  • Grease your hands well to avoid the dough sticking to your hands while shaping.
  • If you're a beginner, buy a modak/mothagam mold, it will do your job a lot easier. 
Why do my modak/mothagam get cracked after steaming?

Steaming for a longer time would make the modak crack on the outer layer. Since the dough is almost cooked already, there is no need to cook for a longer time. Just 5-7 mins of steaming is enough. 
Palkova Kozhukattai


Palkova Kozhukattai | Khoya Modak

Preparation Time : 10 mins | Cooking Time : 8 minsServes :
Recipe Category: Sweet | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
Palkova Kozhukattai, Khoya Modak, Palkova Mothagam Palkova Mothagam is also known as khoya modak or palkova kozhukattai is a sweet dumpling made from the rice flour dough as outer cover and milk solids as inner filling.
Rice flour - 1/2 cup
Sesame oil - 1/2 tsp
Salt - a pinch
Boiling water - little less of 1/2 cup
Palkova - 1/2 cup

Palkova Mothagam

First for the dough, take the rice flour in a bowl, add salt and oil. 
Palkova Mothagam Step by Step Pic 1
Mix it all well together. Then pour the boiling water & mix it with a wooden laddle.  Palkova Mothagam Step by Step Pic 2
Once the dough start comes together, use you hand and make a soft dough. Take a pinch of dough and form a ball. Palkova Mothagam Step by Step Pic 3
Grease your hand with oil well, take a dough and gently press it with your fingers around the edges and move towards the center, it will make a small bowl like the below image ,take a spoonful of palkova(5 mins microwave palkova recipe) and add into the center and then close the dough as shown below.Palkova Mothagam Step by Step Pic 4
Do the same for all the dough and filling. Put it in a steamer basket and steam it for 5-7 mins. Palkova Mothagam Step by Step Pic 5
Delicious Palkova Kozhukattai is ready ! 

Related : How to make Thengai Poorna Kozhukattai / Coconut Modak 

Palkova Kozhukattai
  • The above quantity makes 6 regular size modak and 12 mini modak.
  • You can use the store bought palkova also for this recipe. 
  • Don't overfill the kozhukattai otherwise the filling will come out while steaming
  • Khoya Modak

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Thursday, August 19, 2021

Vadai Mor Kuzhambu | Buttermilk Curry with Masala Vada

Vadai Mor Kuzhambu, a delicious South Indian style buttermilk curry with masala vadai soaked in it. Mor Kuzhambu is a traditional South Indian buttermilk curry made with varieties of vegetables like okra, ash gourd and many more. 

But in our home, while we grew up, this vadai mor kuzhambu is the only variation that Amma used to make and I absolutely loved it back then and still do ! So far I have never made mor kuzhambu without masala vadai whether the curry has vegetables or not. 

If you haven't tried mor kuzhambu with vadai, then do give it a try ! It's absolutely delicious with steaming hot rice ! 
Vadai Mor Kuzhambu
Can I use urad dal vadai / ulundu vadai / medhu vada in this curry?
Yes, you can ! I have seen many recipes using urad dal vada. But in our home we only used masala vadai.  So I'm more inclined to masala vada than the urad dal vada. 

Can I use buttermilk instead of curd ? 
Even though the curry name has buttermilk in it(Mor means buttermilk in tamil), it's usually made with thick curd whisked into thin buttermilk. But if you already have buttermilk, you can very well use that instead of curd.

Vadai Mor Kuzhambu

Preparation Time : 1 hr | Cooking Time : 15 minsServes :
Recipe Category: Curry | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
Vadai Mor kuzhambu, Buttermilk curry with masala vada, Paruppu vadai Mor kuzhambu Vadai Mor Kuzhambu, a delicious South Indian style buttermilk curry with masala vadai soaked in it.
Onion (sliced ) - 2 tbsp
Tomato - 1/2 
Turmeric powder -1/4 tsp
Salt - to taste 
To Grind 
Toor dal - 2 tsp
Coconut - 3 tbsp
Cumin seed - 1/2 tsp
Red chili - 4 (adjust to your taste)
To Temper 
Coconut oil - 2 tsp
Fenugreek seed - 1/4 tsp
Mustard & urad dal - 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves - few  

Vadai Mor Kuzhambu
Soak the toor dal in 1/2 cup of water for 1 hr. Then add the soaked dal and other ingredients listed under "To Grind" into a mixie/ blender jar and grind into smooth paste by adding the needed water and set aside until use.

Heat a pan, add the coconut oil and temper the ingredients listed under "To Temper" one by one and then add the sliced onions & saute till the onions are translucent. 
Next add the roughly chopped tomatoes and give a quick stir. Then add 1 cup of water. 
Next add the dal-coconut paste and turmeric powder. Mix it well and then add the enough salt for the curry.
Bring into boil and then simmer the curry for a few mins until it turns slightly thick. Take the curd in a bowl and whisk it smoothly without any lumps. 
Keep the heat in the lowest possible setting and add the whisked curd, give a quick mix  and switch off the flame. 
Transfer the curry into a another bowl and add the masala vada. Let it soak for 5-10 mins and it's ready to serve. 
Tasty Vadai Mor Kuzhambu is ready to serve . Serve it with hot rice ! 

Related : How to make Crispy Masala Vada 

Vadai Mor Kuzhambu
  • Adding water into the kadai before adding the coconut masala helps to avoid the masala sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  • Because of toor dal, the curry tends to thicken quickly so adding enough water ahead is essential. 
  • Don't add the dal more than the mentioned quantity otherwise the curry would be so thick.
  • Instead of red chili , you can use green chili too for vibrant yellow color curry
 Vadai Mor Kuzhambu

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Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Restaurant Style Mint Chutney | Mint Chutney with Coconut

Restaurant Style Mint Chutney, a delicious and flavorful green chutney that goes well with South Indian Breakfast items like idli, dosa and so on. This mint chutney is one of my recent favorite chutneys that i often make as side dish for breakfast and dinner. It tastes exactly like the restaurant mint chutney ! 

Already i have a mint chutney recipe which doesn't have any coconut. If you're interested in no coconut mint chutney, then check out this mint chutney recipe.  

This Mint chutney recipe is vaguely inspired from the Chef Ventakesh Bhat mint chutney recipe. I have made a little tweak in the recipe to suit our taste. 

Substitution Ideas 
  • Instead of green chilies, you can also use the red chilies. But the color of the chutney is not as vibrant as here.
  • If you don't like the garlic flavor, then skip it or add a piece of ginger.
  • Fresh or frozen coconut can be used in this recipe.

Restaurant Style Mint Chutney

Preparation Time : 10 mins | Cooking Time : 15 minsServes :
Recipe Category: Chutney | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
Mint Chutney, Restaurant style mint chutney, Mint chutney with coconut,Chutney recipe Restaurant Style Mint Chutney, a delicious and flavorful green chutney that goes well with South Indian Breakfast items like idli, dosa.
Mint - 1/2 cup (tightly packed)
Onion(small) -1 
Tomato(small) - 1 
Green Chili - 4 
Garlic - 2 cloves 
Tamarind - a pea size 
Grated coconut - 3 tbsp
Coriander leaves - a few
Salt - to taste
Oil - 1 tsp
Cumin - 1/2 tsp
Urad dal - 1 tsp 
Chana dal - 1 tsp
To Temper 
Oil - 1 tsp
Mustard & urad dal - 1/4 tsp

Peel the onion. Chop the onion and tomato roughly into small pieces, slit the green chilies. Wash the mint leaves & also keep all the other ingredients ready to saute. Heat the pan with oil.
Add the cumin seed, urad dal and chana dal. Saute them till the dal turns golden brown. 
Then add the onions, tomatoes, tamarind, green chili & garlic. Saute them till the onions and tomatoes are soft. 
Next add the mint leaves and saute till the leaves are wilted and then add few coriander leaves. 
Give a good mix and then add the grated coconut , switch off the flame and mix a good mix in the residual heat. Let the mixture cool a bit.
Transfer the mixture into a mixie/blender jar and then add salt. Grind them into coarse paste. 
Then add the water as needed and grind them into smooth paste. Transfer into a bowl and temper the ingredients listed under "To Temper " and add into the chutney. 
Delicious Restaurant style Mint chutney is ready. You can serve this as side dish for idli, dosa and paniyaram varieties.

Related : How to make Soft Idli and Crispy Dosa

Related : How to make Chettinad Kuzhi Paniyaram

  • Cumin seeds give great flavor to the chutney so don't skip it. 
  • Add water little by little and grind the chutney till it's smooth. As it has dal, it takes time to become smooth. 
  • Adding dal increase the quantity of the chutney.  
  • Make sure that the mint leaves are wilted well to avoid the raw smell in the chutney.

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Monday, July 5, 2021

Brussels Sprout Stir Fry-Indian Style

Brussels Sprout Stir fry, a delicious and quick to make side dish for your meal. I have started including Brussels sprouts in our diet about a year ago, before that i had no idea on how it tastes! 
So as usual , initially I was skeptical to try but once I started cooking at home, we both liked it and this stir fry is one of our favorites. 

Brussels Sprout is a leafy vegetable and kind of looks like mini cabbage. Brussels Sprout is very popular in Brussels, Belgium for a very long time and hence it got its name(source:wiki)

Brussels Sprout tastes amazing when you make it as a simple stir fry. Here I have used some Indian spices like cumin & ginger garlic paste to flavor it. But you can play with your favorite spices and make it as per your preference.

Now, let's check out on how to make these Brussels Sprout stir fry!  

Brussels Sprouts Stir Fry-Indian Style

Preparation Time : 5 mins | Cooking Time : 15 minsServes :
Recipe Category: Stir fry | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
Indian Style Brussels Sprout stir fir Brussels Sprout Stir fry, a delicious and quick to make side dish for your meal.
Brussels sprouts - 10
Cumin seed - 1/2 tsp
Ginger garlic paste - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Red chili powder - 1/2 tsp
Salt - to taste
Olive Oil - 1 tsp

Wash and cut the brussels sprouts into half vertically, heat the pan with oil, add the cumin ,let it splutter then add the ginger garlic paste, stir it in the oil for 30 secs, then add the brussels sprouts.
Saute it in the oil for 2 mins and then add 1/2 cup of water and cover cook the brussels sprouts until it's tender.
Once all the water is almost absorbed, add the spices(turmeric &red chili powder) and salt.
Give a good mix and roast till it's brown on some spots.

Tasty Indian Style Brussels Sprouts stir fry is ready to serve.

Related:How to make Broccoli Stir Fry 


  • Cooking time varies depends on the size of the Brussels sprout, so cook till it's tender.
  • Adjust the spices as per your liking.

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