Saturday, February 26, 2011

Exotic Khakra snack

I wouldn't have thought of making this snack if it wasn't for the Khakras that were given by my neighbour. I came to know about the khakra only through the TV soap "Krishnaben Khakrawala". I must say that after tasting these khakras, I wondered why I hadn't heard or tasted the khakras earlier. Though, not perfectly circular, they were crisp on the outside and yet melted in the mouth. They tasted just PERFECT.

The idea for this snack came from Tarla dalal's healthy snacks for kids. I have tweaked the recipe to suite my tastes and I must say that this snack proved to be a great hit with my little Purvi. She just couldn't get enough of these. This is definitely the best way to make a child eat vegetables. The whole wheat and  fibre rich khakras, topped with fresh vegetables and cheese makes a great tea time snack for adults as well as an amazing finger food for tiny tots.

Exotic Khakra snack recipe:
Preparation time: 20 mins
Cooking time: 15mins
Serves- 4

Khakras- 4-5, broken into bite sized pieces

For the topping:

Carrot- 1, diced
Beans- 6-8, chopped fine
Cabbage- 1/4 cup, chopped fine
Capsicum- 1, diced
Onion- 1, chopped fine
Garlic- 1clove, minced
Jeera or cumin powder- 1/2 tsp
Pepper corn- 4, powdered
Paprika powder- 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste
Sugar- 1/2tsp
Butter- 2 tbsp
Coriander leaves to garnish
Mozzarella Cheese to top

  • Heat butter in a pan and add the minced garlic and onion and saute till translucent.
  • Add the chopped, carrot and beans and fry on high heat for 3mins till half done
  • Add the cabbage and capsicum and fry for 2 more mins
  • Add the chopped tomatoes and saute for 2-3 mins
  • Add the salt, sugar, paprika powder and Cumin seed powder and fry till all the water is absorbed and the oil is separated
  • Take off the heat and garnish with coriander leaves and keep aside.
  • To serve, arrange the khakra pieces on serving dish and sprinkle the topping mixture on top.
  • Grate some mozzarella cheese over the topping and serve immediately.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Tovve- The south Indian Dal

Tovve aka the south Indian dal is an ultimate comfort food for me. I really don't know why I didn't post this earlier when I make this at least once in every week. 

This recipe uses very few simple ingredients to create this heavenly and heart warming side dish for rice or rotis. Lightly spiced moong dal and the ridge gourd combination is a match made in heaven. The addition of lime, lends a zesty flavour to the dal.

Tovve recipe:
Preparation time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 15 mins
Serves- 4


Moongdal or Tur dal or masoor dal or a combo any of these dal- 1 cup
Ridge gourd- 1 large, cubed and par boiled
Coconut- 1 tbsp (optional)
Turmeric- 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste
Sugar- 1 tsp
Juice of 1/2 lime
Coriander to garnish
For the seasoning:
Oil or ghee- 2 tsp
Mustard- 1/2 tsp
Jeera- 1/2 tsp
Hing- A pinch
Green chilli- 1, finely chopped
Curry leaves- 1 sprig

  • Pressure cook the dal or dals along with turmeric and 1/4tsp of oil for 5-6 whistles or till done and keep it aside.
  • Add the cooked ridge gourd and some water to  the dal and bring the miture to a boil on a low flame.
  • Add the salt, sugar and coconut and boil for 1 more min and take off the heat.
  • For the seasoning, heat oil or ghee in a pan and add the mustard seeds
  • Once they pop, add the jeera and rey till they turn brown
  • Add the hing and the curry leaves and green chillies and  fry for a min
  • Add the seasoning mixture to the dal and mix.
  • Garnish with lime juice and coriander leaves and serve hot with rice or rotis.
P.S. I have used ridge gourd for this recipe. You can use other vegetables like coyote squash, carrots, cabbage or just tomatoes.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Hagaljayi Gojju/ Bitter gourd in Sweet tamarind gravy

I know that Bitter gourd is nor a preferred vegetable by many. However, if this bitterness is combined with the sweetness of the jaggery and the sourness of the tamarind, then the dish transforms itself into a lip smacking curry or gravy. Once such Preparation which is undoubtedly loved by all is the gojju.

Gojju is an authentic Kannadiga dish which is cooked for everyday meal. This gravy tastes great with either rice or rotis.There are many recipes for gojju. Infact, my mom makes it in a different way and so does my grandmother. This recipe has been there in my recipe book for 4 years now. So I really don't remember where I got this from. So Sorry Aipi and Priya :-(

In this recipe, the bitter gourd is fried till crisp and then simmered in the gravy of coconut, tamarind and jaggery. This dish is sure to win the hearts of every Karela hater :).

Hagalkayi Gojju recipe:
Preparation time: 15mins
Cooking time 15 mins
Serves- 4

Bitter gourd- 3 med, washed, deseeded and chopped fine.
Tamarind- Big lime sized
Jaggery- Big lime sized
Oil- 1tbsp
Salt to taste
Turmeric- 1 pinch
Fresh grated coconut- 2 tbsp,
For the Spice mix:
Channa dal or bengal gram- 2tbsp
Urad dal or black gram- 1tbsp
Coriander seeds- 1tsp
Pepper- 4-5
Jeera or cumin- 1tsp
Sesame seeds- 1tsp
Fenugreek seeds or methi- a pinch
Red chillies- 4
For the seasoning:
Oil- 2tsp
Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves- 1 sprig
Hing- a pinch


  • Soak the tamarind in water for some time and extract it's pulp and keep it aside.
  • Dry roast all the ingredients for the spice mix till brown.
  • Take off the heat and cool thoroughly
  • Grind along with the coconut and a little water to a fine paste and keep it aside.
  • Heat a tbsp of oil in a pan and add the chopped bitter gourd.
  • Fry the bitter gourd for 5-7 mins till crisp.
  • Add the turmeric powder, tamarind pulp and a little water and simmer for sometime.
  • Add the ground paste, salt, jaggery and mix.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil on a low fire and take off the heat.
  • For the seasoning, Heat oil in a pan and add the mustard seeds
  • Once it pops, add the curry leaves and hing.
  • Fry till the curry leaves turn crisp and add the seasoning to the gojju.
  • Serve hot with either rice or rotis.
P.S You make the same gravy by replacing the bitter gourd with okra.

This recipe is my contribution to Api and Priya's Tuesday book marked recipes.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Pina Colada cake

This is another recipe from Asha Khatau's Dlectable desserts book. Initially, I was a little skeptical about this recipe.Firstly because, the whole recipe seemed to exotic and fancy to me. And secondly, I had never tasted Pina colada (drink) before, and I was not sure if the coconut milk and the pineapple would go well together. There was one part of me which was reluctant to try the recipe and there was this other part of me who wanted to try out this exotic tasting cake. Eventually, with each passing word the adventurer part of me won. And I am glad that it did because I was completely blown over by the taste. It had just the right amount of sweetness. It was actually an elegant and delectable dessert. And moreover, after the cake was complete, I did not find it fancy either :)

Pina colada cake recipe:
Preparation time: 40min
serves- 6

Sugar- 1/4 cup dissolved in 1/2 cup of water
Lemon juice- 1tbsp
For Pina colada frosting:
Chopped Pine apple- 1cup
Coconut milk- 1 cup
Corn flour- 2tbsp
Powdered sugar- 2tbsp
Whipping cream- 1 cup
Lemon or Pine apple essence- 1 tsp

A few Pieces of Pine apple to Garnish

  • Slice the cake horizontally into two parts.
  • Place the top half down, cut side up on a serving plate.
  • Mix sugar, water and lime juice and soak the cake in this syrup
For the Frosting:
  • In a small pan, mix coconut milk, sugar and corn flour.
  • Heat on a low flame till the mixture is thick
  • Remove and cool completely.
  • Whip the cream till fluffy and add the lemon essence
  • Fold the pine apple pieces and thickened coconut cream.
To Proceed:
  • To frost the cake, pour half of the frosting to the soaked cake.
  • Sandwich it with the other half and top it up with the remaining frosting
  • Garnish with pine apple pieces and chill until ready to serve.
P.S.For the sponge cake, I have used the recipe from DK's You can however, make the sponge cake according to your recipe. For the syrup mixture, you can use 1/4 cup of rum instead of water. 

This recipe will go straight to Priya's Best western desserts event.

And also to Nancy's Your best recipe event

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Family Bread

Till a few days back, I used to think that baking bread at home was just a waste of time and precious energy. Infact, whenever my grandfather would say that he would bake wonderful milk breads years ago, I would ask him if breads were not available near their place at that time. He would say that  eating home baked bread had a different kind of pleasure. To which my reply would be, a bread is a bread. Home-made or store brought. And anyways, who would want to spend the entire day kneading away, when you can get white bread at every corner store??

All these views and assumptions changed after I saw this bread recipe in a book called "The natural baby food cook book" by Margaret Elizabeth Kenda and Phyllis S Williams. I found this book in a second hand book shop. It was actually this recipe that made me buy the book. This bread is much more than the normal whole wheat bread. It has all the necessary ingredients that can make a bread wholesome, nutritious and power packed. I have made some minor changes in the recipe to suit my pantry requirements. 

This bread can be consumed by children and adults alike. I assure this has become our "family bread". Try baking this. I'm sure it will become your family's as well. 

Family bread recipe:
Preparation time- 3hrs
Baking time: 50 mins
Makes- 2 loaves


Dry yeast- 1 package or 1-1/2tbsp
Luke warm water- 1 cup
Brown Sugar- 2 tbsp
Warmed milk- 3 cups
Salt to taste
Oil- 2-3 tbsp
Whole wheat flour- 7 cups
Soy flour- 1 cup
Skimmed milk or whole milk powder- 1/4 cup
Rolled Oats- 1/4 cup
Poppy seeds- 2 tbsp
Sesame seeds- 1 tbsp


  • Mix dry yeast water and brown sugar and let it stand in a warm place for 45 mins
  • Mix the whole wheat flour, Milk powder, soy flour, rolled oats, poppy seeds sesame seeds and salt in  a large bowl.
  • Make a hole in the center and add the frothy yeast mixture and milk and mix thoroughly.
  • Knead the dough vigorously on a clean floured surface for 15 too 20 mins or till the dough is smooth and slightly sticky.
  • Cover and let it rise in a warm place for one hour.
  • Once the dough has risen to double the size, punch the dough and knead again for 5 mins and Place it , covered on a floured surface for 10-15 mins
  • Shape the dough into loaves and place it in a greased loaf pan.
  • Let it rise covered for 1hour ina  warm place.
  • Bake at 200C for 20mins and then at 150 C for 30 mins.
  • Remove from pans immediately and let it cool on wire racks and store in air tight containers.
This recipe will go straight to Pari's Cooking with bread event

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Akki roti/ Rice flour flat bread

Akki rotti aka a flat bread made out of rice flour is a popular karnataka dish. This is my favourite breakfast dish. Next to masala dosa ofcourse.  I am yet to come  across a kannadiga who does not like this dish. This versatile flat bread can be made in a number of ways. You can make it according to the recipe given below or you can go ahead and add veggies like grated carrots, or greens like methi and dill . No matter how you make it I assure you it will come out as tasty.

Akki rotti recipe:
Preparation time- 20mins
Cooking time 15mins
Makes 6 rotis


Rice flour- 2cups
Onion- 3 large, chopped fine
Jeera or cumin- 1-1/2 tsp
Green chillies-2, finely chopped
Coriander leaves- 2 tbsp, chopped
Fresh grated Coconut- 2tbsp (optional)
Salt to taste
Oil to shallow fry

  • In a bowl, mix the rice flour, onion, jeera, green chillies, coriander leaves, coconut and salt.
  • Add water gradually and make a smooth but firm dough.
  • Divide the dough into 6 equal portions and keep aside
  • Take an iron skillet or a  wok and smear some oil
  • Take a portion of the dough and place it in the centre of the skillet or wok.
  • Wet your hands in  alittle water and pat it evenly with your fingers to make a round roti.
  • Make 3-4 holes on the roti and pour a tspn of oil around the circumference of the roti and transfer the skillet to the stove.
  • Cook the roti on a medium flame 2-3 mins or till done.
  • Take off the heat and serve hot with butter, ghee or chutney of your choice.
P.S. I would suggest using two skillets or wok to make this roti. When one roti is being cooked, you can pat the dough on another skillet. Remove the cooked rotti from the skillet and hold it under running water or dip it in a large vessel containing cold water. This way the skillet/ wok will be cool enough for another roti

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Molten chocolate cake

This recipe is an extension of my previous post, Eggless chocolate cake. I could have posted this recipe yesterday itself. But then, I came to know about this recipe only after posting the chocolate cake recipe. I felt like kicking myself for not going through the recipe book earlier.

After posting the recipe for chocolate cake, I sat down to go through the book called Epicures Delectable desserts by Asha Khatau when my eyes fell on this recipe. This warm dessert involves the addition of chocolate syrup and Chocolate fudge sauce to the chocolate cake. It is then served with Vanilla ice cream garnished with almonds.  Each bite is of this dessert makes you feel like tasting heaven. Beware!! This is certainly not for calorie conscious people.

Molten chocolate cake recipe:
Preparation time: 20mins
Cooking time: 30 mins
Serves- 6

For the chocolate syrup:
Makes 1 cup
Sugar- 1/2 cup
Water- 1/3 cup
Bitter cooking chocolate- 50gm

For the Fudge Sauce:
Fresh cream- 1/2 cup
Powdered Sugar- 1/4 cup
Corn flour- 2tsp, mixed with 2tsp of water
Bitter chocolate- 125 gm

To serve
Vanilla Ice cream
Toasted and Chopped almonds to Garnish


For the Chocolate syrup:
  • Mix sugar and water in a small sauce pan on low heat till the sugar melts.
  • Bring to a boil and simmer for 3-4 mins.
  • Add chopped chocolate and stir till the chocolate has completely.
  • Set aside and cool
For the chocolate Fudge sauce:
  • Combine the cream and sugar in a pan and stir till the sugar dissolves.
  • Add the cornflour paste and stir till the mixture thickens.
  • Remove from heat and add chocolate and stir until the chocolate is well combined with the cream mixture and keep aside.
How to proceed
  • Place the warm cake onto the serving plate and pour the syrup all over cake.
  • Each addition has to be absorbed before adding the next one.
  • Scoop the ice cream in the center of the cake and pour the warm fudge sauce over the ice cream.
  • Sprinkle toasted almonds on top and serve immediately.
This recipe goes to Delicious desserts event hosted by Aliena 

Priya's best western Desserts event

And to Aipi and Priya's tuesday bookmarked event

Eggless chocolate cake for my valentine

Happy Valentines day to all my blogger friends. I hope you all are having a very good time with your Loved ones. At my place, the only reaction I get from S is a chukle. As if to say that I am pretty silly to celebrate this day. Anyways, his indifference cannot drench my valentine spirit. I adore S way too much for that. 

I baked this chocolate cake especially for S. Why chocolate cake? you might ask. It's simply because S is a quintessential chocoholic. At times, he is worse than my 19 month old daughter. You give him a bar of Toblerone or galaxy and he is a happy man. That's the reason I decided to bake a chocolate cake for him. I had to go through the problems of power fluctuation  and  power cut while baking the cake. At one point, I thought that the cake would be spoilt altogether. But thankfully, it came out and quite well. The smile and glow on S's face when he tasted the cake was worth all the effort and hard work.

The recipe for this cake is taken from this  blog. I have not made any changes to the recipe. The cake came out just perfect with the same measurements. Go ahead and try this version of chocolate cake and I'm sure you will be floored as well

Eggless chocolate cake recipe:
Preparation time: 20mins
Baking time: 40 min
Makes a 9" round cake


All purpose flour or maida- 1-1/2 cup
Cocoa powder- 2tbsp
Condensed milk- 1 tin or 2 cups
Baking powder- 2tsp
Baking soda- 1tsp
Butter- 10tbsp or 150gm, melted
Vanilla essence- 2tsp
Water- 150mil or 2/3 cups

  • Sieve the  all purpose flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cocoa powder in a bowl and keep aside.
  • In another bowl, mix the condensed milk, water,vanilla essence  and the melted butter. 
  • Pour the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix gently till the mixture is uniform and without lumps.
  • Grease a baking tin and pour the batter into it. Bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 40mins or till a skewer inserted comes out clean.
  • Once done, Cool the cake on a wire rack and serve warm with frosting or topping of your choice.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Mixed vegetable Patiala style

This is another simple curry yet tasty at the same time. I got this recipe from Tarla dalal's Desi Khana recipe book. What makes this curry different, is the addition of cinnamon . The cinnamon lends a distinctive bitter sweet taste to the otherwise ordinary sabzi. Try this and I'm sure you will not be disappointed.

Mixed vegetable Patiala style recipe:
Preparation time: 20mins
Cooking time- 15 mins
Serves- 4


Mixed vegetables like carrots, beans, peas, cauliflower and potato- 2 cups, Par boiled
Onion- 1 large, Finely chopped
Ginger garlic paste- 1 tsp
Milk-1 cup
Cinnamon- 1" piece, powdered
Sugar- 1tsp
Salt- to taste
Rice flour- 2tsp
Oil- 2tbsp
Jeera or cumin seeds- 1/2 tsp
Turmeric- 1/4tsp
Green chilli- 1
Coriander leaves to garnish

  • Heat oil in a wok and add the jeera. 
  • Once they pop and turn brown, add the onion and saute till translucent.
  • Add the ginger-Garlic paste and green chilli  and saute for a min.
  • Add the salt, sugar and turmeric and saute for a min more.
  • Add the par boiled vegetables and mix thoroughly.
  • Stir in the milk and boil the mixture on a low flame.
  • Make a thin paste of the rice flour by adding a little water and add this paste to the boiling mixture.
  • Once the mixture thickens, add the cinnamon powder and stir.
  • Take off the heat, garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with rotis.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Aalu matar

I don't think this dish needs any introduction. I think it has been blogged  a100 times already. But then, this curry is so delicious that I can't help blogging this recipe again. 
This curry is my mom's specialty. I had learnt to make this curry from her during my college days. And this was one among  the few first dishes that I had tried after marriage. This was also the first curry that S had appreciated. So you see, this curry has a lot of memories. 
Aloo matar is very simple to put together and yet it tastes brilliant with either rice, rotis or naan. 

Aloo matar recipe:
Preparation time: 20 mins
Cooking time: 15 mins
Serves- 4


Potatoes-2 large, boled, peeled and mashed
Fresh or frozen peas- 3/4th cup. Par boiled
Onion- 1 Large, finely chopped
Tomatoes- 2Large, Finely chopped
Green chilli- 1, chopped
Jeera or cumin seeds- 1/2tsp
Ginger- garlic paste- 1tsp
Red chilli powder- 1/2tsp
Turmeric- 1/4tsp
Coriander seed powder- 1/2 tsp
Garam masala- 1 pinch
Sugar- 1/4tsp
Salt- to taste
Oil- 1-1/2 tsp
Coriander to garnish
Juice of Quarter lime to garnish optional
  • Heat oil in a pan and add the Cumin seeds.
  • Once they sputter add the chopped onion and fry till pink.
  • Add the Ginger- Garlic paste and chopped green chilli and  saute till the raw smell goes
  • Add the chopped tomatoes and fry for a min.
  • Add the turmeric, salt, sugar, coriander seed powder and red chilli powder and fry for 2 more mins.
  • Stir in the mashed potatoes and the boiled peas and mix.
  • Add required quantity of water and bring the mixture to a boil.
  • Add the garam masala and cook the mixture of a min more.
  • Take off the heat and garnish with coriander leaves and lime juice and serve hot with rice or rotis.

Friday, February 4, 2011


Hello All!!! I'm back. Gosh!!! It sure feels good to be back after all these days. I had never realized that I would miss my virtual world/ kitchen as much as I missed my real one ;). I can't believe that only four days back I was in Bangalore struggling with the  packing and now I'm on the other end of the Indian ocean. 

As I am still in the process of settling down, I am not able to cook any elaborate meals. For the past three days, it has only been rasam and sambar. Today however, I decided to make kootu. I used to make kootu earlier but a little differently. This recipe for kootu was given to me by my ajji (grandma) during my visit. I must say that this is by far the best recipe for kootu. This gravy is so full of flavour that it sure to warm your mind, body and soul.

Kootu recipe:
Preparation time: 20mins
Cooking time:15 mins
Serves- 4

2 cups of vegetables like carrot, beans, peas, potato, ridge gourd, cubed
Toor dal- 1 cup, pressure cooked along with a tsp of oil and a pinch of turmeric
Ground nuts- a handful
Poppy seeds- 1tbsp, toasted till fragrant and brown.
Urad dal- 1tbsp
Channa dal- 1/2tbsp
Coriander seeds- 1/2tbsp
Pepper corn- 6-8
Cinnamon- 1” piece
Kashmiri Red chillies- 2
Oil- ½ tsp
Fresh grated Coconut- 3 tbsp
Salt- to taste
Jaggerry- 1/2tsp
For seasoning:
Mustard seeds- 1tsp
Ghee/ oil- 2tsp
Hing- a big pinch
Curry leaves- 1sprig

  •     Par boil the vegetables along with the groundnuts and keep aside.
  •     Heat ½ tsp of oil in a pan and add the pepper corn and cinnamon and fry for a min.
  •     Add the urad dal and channa dal and fry till brown
  •     Add the coriander seeds and sauté for a min more.
  •     Add the red chillies and fry till they are crisp.
  •     Take off the heat, cool and grind the mixture, along with the roasted poppy seeds  to a fine powder.        
  •     Add the shredded coconut and water and grind to a smooth paste and keep aside.
  •     In a thick bottomed vessel, mix the boiled vegetables along with the cooked dal.
  •     Add the ground paste and some water and bring the mixture to a boil on a low flame.
  •     Add salt and jaggery and boil for some more time. Take off the heat and keep aside.
  •     For the seasoning, heat 2tsp of ghee in a pan and add the mustard seeds.
  •     Once they pop, add the hing and curry leaves.
  •     Saute till the curry leaves are crisp.
  •     Remove from fire and add the seasoning to the kootu.
  • Serve hot with rice and papad

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