Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Nellikai Thuvaiyal | Gooseberry Thuvaiyal | Thuvaiyal Recipe

Nellikai Thuvaiyal, a healthy and tasty thuvaiyal made from gooseberries. Today's recipe is from my mom's place. Amma made this thuvaiyal for our lunch yesterday along with puli kuzhambu,katti paruppu & siru kizhangu thuvaram. All i did was clicked and had this yummy meal. Amma told me about this thuvaiyal a long time ago, since it's hard to find  fresh gooseberry in US, i haven't tried on my own so far. So this is the first time i had this thuvaiyal and really liked it a lot. Best accompaniment for curd rice for sure !!! If you're looking for some healthy & tasty thuvaiyal, do give this a try, i'm sure that you won't be disappointed.

Nellikai Thuvaiyal | Gooseberry Thuvaiyal

Preparation Time : 5 mins | Cooking Time : 20 minsServes : 5 to 6 
Recipe Category: Accompaniment | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
Gooseberry - 6
Red chili - 10 to 12
Urad dal - 1 tbsp
Garlic - 2 pods
Tamarind - 1/2 goose berry size
Grated Coconut - 2 tbsp
Curry leaves - 2 springs
Salt - to taste 
Sesame Oil - 1 tsp + 2 tsp

Wash the gooseberry and put it in the pressure cooker along with little water.Cook it for one whistle, let the pressure released by itself and then open the cooker, cut the gooseberry into four and remove the seed. Next heat a kadai with 1 tsp of oil and add the urad dal.Let the urad dal roast for one min, then add the red chili, tamarind, curry leaves,salt one by one and roast it till nice aroma comes from it.Then add the coconut and garlic, let them also roast till they are aromatic. Remove from flame and let it cool completely.First put the roasted ingredients into the mixie jar and grind into coarse paste, then add nellikai, if needed add water and grind into smooth paste.Heat the kadai with remaining oil, add the grounded thuvaiyal and saute it till it becomes non-sticky.That's it, Tasty and Healthy Nellikai Thuvaiyal is ready.
  • Depends on the tanginess of the nellikai, add more or less of tamarind.
  • Here i have used skinned & slitted urad dal for best flavor. But you can use whatever you have.
  • Sesame oil gives great flavor to the thuvaiyal.
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Monday, December 17, 2018

Double Layer Coconut Burfi | Coconut Burfi with Milk Powder

Double Layer Coconut Burfi, a delicious and easy to make burfi with coconut. I have a vivid memory of eating coconut burfi from the petti kadai(small shop) during my school days. In those days, these coconut burfi and pori vilangai were my favorite after lunch snacks and those were 50 paise/ piece then. In petti kadai, the coconut burfis were in two colors (white & pink) and i have a long term wish to make them at home.

Instead of making them in two colors separately, i thought of making them in layers, but i'm not sure about the flavors goes into that petti kadai coconut burfis, i remember only the colors not the flavors , it's really long time since i had. So i went with my favorite flavors, cardamom for white layer and rose essence for pink layer and also i have added a small amount of milk powder(i'm sure that this was not included in the petti kadai burfi recipe) for extra richness and taste. To my surprise, it turned out so soft and delicious. 

Before check out the recipe, here is a quick update, we're moving to the new place again, those who know me personally would have know that how many times we have moved since we got married, sometimes, it's kinda feel like a modern nomadic life. As much as we like to move to new place, at times, it's kind of tiresome to start from scratch again & again. Is anyone relate to it ??? So, coming to the point, since we're moving, there will a lack of post for a while until it got my own kitchen again. Meantime, enjoy your time here. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all. 

Double Layer Coconut Burfi

Preparation Time : 10 mins | Cooking Time : 20 minsMakes : 12 
Recipe Category: Sweet | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
For Cardamom Layer
Coconut flakes(unsweetened) - 3/4 cup
Milk Powder - 1/4 cup
Sugar - 1/2 cup
Cardamom - 2(crushed)
For Rose Layer
Coconut flakes(unsweetened) - 3/4 cup
Milk Powder - 1/4 cup
Sugar - 1/2 cup
Rose essence - 2 drop
Pink food color(gel) - 1 drop(optional)

First let's make the cardamom layer, take the sugar in a pan, add water just enough to cover the sugar and let it melt completely. Let it boil until the sugar syrup reach one string consistency, then add the coconut flakes and milk powder.Mix it well without any lumps and then add the crushed cardamom.Cook till the coconut mixture leaves the sides of the pan and then transfer the mixture into the ghee greased/ lined tray and flat the top with the ghee greased spoon/spatula.Next let's make the rose layer, take the sugar in a pan, add water just enough to cover the sugar and let it melt completely. Let it boil until the sugar syrup reach one string consistency, then add the coconut flakes and milk powder.Mix it well without any lumps. Then add the rose essence and food color into it and mix it well. Transfer the mixture on top of the cardamom layer and smooth out the surface on the top. Let it cool a bit and cut into squares.Let it cool it completely and store it in air tight container. Delicious Coconut Burfi is ready.
  • Instead of doing it in batches, you can make it in one shot and in the end divide the mixture into half and add the different flavoring into each one. 
  • If you're doing like me, make each layer separately, then you have to super quick in making the second layer before the first one sets. Other wise the layers cannot stick together. 
  • While making the second layer, keep the first layer near the stove itself, that way it won't set immediately.
  • Milk powder gives richness to the burfi.
  • You can add upto 1/3 cup of milk powder for this burfi.  
  • I have pulsed the coconut once in a mixie for fine texture. But it's optional.
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Friday, November 30, 2018

Carrot Cheese Paratha | Carrot Paratha | Paratha Recipe

Carrot Cheese Paratha, a delicious stuffed paratha that can be prepared in no time.  I have been thought of making this paratha for every long time, but ST is not fond of any meal with slight sweet in it. Also I was thinking that the paratha might have slight sweet in it,because of carrot. Finally keep the doubts aside and tried it last week, Yes it has mild sweet taste but not at all overpowering and with other spices and cheese, it tastes so good. Even ST had it without any complaints :- ). Ok, now let's check out how to make this super easy carrot paratha. 

Carrot Cheese Paratha

Preparation Time : 10 mins | Cooking Time : 20 minsServes :
Recipe Category: Paratha | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
For dough
Wheat flour - 1 cup
Oil - 1 tsp
Salt - to taste
Water - as needed
For Stuffing
Carrot - 2 
Cheese - 1/2 cup
Red chili powder - 1/4 tsp
Garam masala powder - 1/4 tsp
Salt - to taste

Take the flour in a bowl, add salt & oil and mix it with flour well. Then add water to the flour.Mix it with your hand and gather it together as a single mass , now knead the dough well until the surface looks smooth.Cover it with lid and set aside for minimum 15 mins.Next grate the carrot finely and add into the bowl along with the other ingredients of the stuffing. Mix it well.Pinch medium lemon sized balls from the dough and roll it as smooth. Take the rolling pin and roll into small disc, place the stuffing in the center.Pleat the sides towards the center and seal it. Keep the sealed edge downside and roll into thick paratha(if needed add more flour for dusting).Heat the tava, grease it will oil and place the rolled paratha on it.Cook it on both side until the brown spots appears on both sides.Tada, Tasty Carrot Paratha is ready.


  • You can add more or less cheese as per liking.
  • Here i have used Mozzarella cheese,but you can use any cheese you like.
  • Grate the carrot finely, it helps to roll the paratha evenly.

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Tuesday, November 20, 2018

How to Clean Vazhaipoo | Banana Flower

Vazhaipoo/ Banana Flowers are the blossom that grows on banana plant and it's used in south indian cooking a lot. We make usili, kola urundai, vadai,poriyal with banana flower, all are really delicious and we as a family love them in any form. But cleaning banana flowers is such a painstaking process and also many beginners are not aware of this, so this post might useful for all the beginners in cooking and  experts this post  is not for you :-) but if you're willing to take a look on how i clean my vazhaipoo/banana flower, you're more welcome.
At one time, when we were in hosur and i was still a beginner in cooking then, bought a vazhaipoo, called Amma & asked about the cleaning method and did all the cleaning, it took around 2 hrs. Once finished cooking them, i had noticed that it had a strong bitter taste and wondered why it had such a bitter taste, then again called Amma, she told that very rarely some vazhaipoo/banana flower has strong bitter taste(mild bitter taste is normal) and it's not advisable to consume them. Later i threw them in trash with heavy heart. So always taste a bit of  raw florets, if it doesn't have any bitter taste, proceed cleaning them, else discard them. Lesson learnt that day !!! Ok, now it's time to check out the cleaning method.

How to Clean Vazhaipoo | Banana Flower

Preparation Time : 20 mins | Cooking Time : 0 minsServes :
Recipe Category: Basic | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
Banana Flower - 1 

First take the banana flower, peel the first layer of petal and you can see the banana florets inside, remove them and place it on the plate. Do the same for next couple of petals. Next take one flower in your hand and inside you can see a stamen(the one with round head ) and a transparent layer.Remove them and discard it. Similarly do the same for all the florets. As you go on, the florets became smaller in size inside. At that stage, there is hardly any transparent layer, so just remove the stamen alone.At one stage, you find it hard to remove the petals, at that stage, don't remove the petals, you can used them as it. Just remove the stem from it and chop them along them with florets.That's it, now it's ready to chop and cook.
  • Your hands may have dark stains while cleaning. To remove that, just apply some coconut oil on hand after cleaning , rub it with tissue paper and wash it with hand wash or you can use the hand gloves to avoid staining.
  • Banana florets becomes dark when keep it outside for long. If you're not cooking them immediately, put them in butter milk, it helps to become dark.

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Thursday, November 15, 2018

Home made Pav bread | Pav bread using Tangzhong method

Pav bread , a soft and fluffy dinner rolls & it's served with pav bhaji across India. Though i make pav bhaji at home regularly, i never tried pav bread on my own until very recently. Once i had started to make pav bread at home, i realized how soft and delicious it is than the store bought ones. Not only pav bhaji, you can make vada pav also with this pav bread.
Here in the recipe, the tangzhong method of bread making technique is used. Tangzhong is a method where  flour and water roux is used to make soft and fluffy bread which was originated from Japan. Before making this pav bread, i have baked coconut buns once using Tangzhong method and the bread was so soft and delicious, so when i saw this recipe  for pav bread using tangzhong method from Gayathri's space, without a doubt i tried it at once and as expected the pav bread was so soft and delicious. Sure it's a keeper recipe.
Before checking out the recipe, i have to let you guys know one thing first, here in the recipe, there is no step by step pics like my other posts. Currently i'm not having my camera with me and it takes another week to get my camera back, since i don't want to keep my space idle for that long, i'm posting this recipe without step by step pics, the final pictures was taken in one of my successful attempts of making this pav bread, once i got the camera, will update the step by step pics, Step by step pics are updated,now let's check out the recipe.

Home made Pav bread

Preparation Time : 2 hrs | Cooking Time : 20 minsMakes : 12 
Recipe Category: Bread | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
All purpose flour - 2 & 1/2 cup
Sugar - 3 & 1/2 tsp
Salt - 3/4 tsp
Curd - 1/4 cup
Milk Powder - 2 tsp(optional)
Instant yeast - 2 tsp
Butter - 3 tsp
For the flour roux
All purpose flour - 8 tsp
Milk - 1/2 cup

First let's make the flour roux, for that, take the all purpose flour and milk in a sauce, whisk it until all mix together well. Then put it in the low heat, continuously whisk & cook till it becomes thick dough.Remove from the flame,transfer the flour roux into a bowl,cover it with cling wrap(if you're using for later) and let it cool completely. Next for the dough, add the flour,sugar,salt,milk powder and yeast in a bowl. Mix it well.Make a well in the center and add the prepared flour roux, butter,curd  and mix it all together until it looks crumbled.Next add  1/2 cup(approx) of water and make a slightly sticky dough.Transfer the dough on to the working surface and kneed it for 10 mins until it becomes soft and non-sticky. It should pass the window pane test(That means you can able to stretch the dough without breaking such that the light can pass through it).Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover it with cling wrap, let it rise for double in size. It takes 1 to 1&1/2 hrs approx. Once the dough is doubled in size, punch down the extra air and cut the dough into 4 equal parts.Take each part of dough and make three balls out of it. Keep the dough inside your palm and roll into smooth balls. 
Do the same for the remaining dough and place it on the greased baking sheet. Cover it with cling paper and let it rise again for 30- 40 mins.Preheat oven at 350F. Once the dough doubled in size, brush it with milk on top and place it in the oven & bake it for 20-22 mins mins.Remove from the oven and brush the top with melted butter on the top. Let it cool completely on wire rack.
Tasty and soft Pav bread is ready to serve.
  • While preparing the roux, make sure to stir it continuously, it tends to clump together at the bottom quickly.
  • Cool the roux completely before use it in the dough.
  • Kneed the dough for 10 mins is must to get that soft , smooth & non-sticky dough. 
  • Even without milk powder also, it turns out fine. 
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