Monday, October 22, 2012

Purple cabbage slaw with hung curd dressing

Cole slaw or just slaw is nothing but a salad that consists primarily of cabbage and is dressed with mayonnaise and buttermilk. Cole slaw is quintessentially a picnic salad There are a lot of variations to the coleslaw. I have seen recipes that include fruits, cheese, cream cheese, sour cream, seeds etc. This recipe however, is my way of making this traditional slaw.

Apart from fruit juices, salads also make regular appearances on our dining table. This cabbage salad is something that I make from time to time and we all love it. This salad can be made with white cabbage as well but I love tossing this salad with purple or red cabbage. Simply because of it's vibrant colour.

A versatile salad that makes a great side dish with Indian breads or it can be used as a stuffing in wraps and sandwiches. I normally make this salad in the night. That way, I can use the left overs in my sandwich the next day. Cool isn't it?

Purple cabbage slaw with hung curd dressing recipe:
Preparation time: 15 min
Cooking time: nil
Serves- 4

Purple cabbage- 450gm, shredded
Carrots- 2, grated
Spring onion whites- 1tbsp, finely chopped
Spring onion greens- 2tbsp, finely chopped
hung curd or greek style yougurt- 1/2 cup
Sugar- 1tsp
Salt to taste
Pepper powder- 1/2 tsp
Lemon juice- 1/2tsp

  • Place the vegetables in a salad bowl and mix
  • In another bowl, mix together the curds, salt, sugar, pepper, lemon and finely chopped onion
  • Add this dressing to the vegetables and toss well and chill
  • Garnish with spring onion greens and serve.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Rava Kesari- Semolina Pudding

Rava kesari or Sajjige as we call it is one dessert that does not need any introduction. I think this is one of the easiest and most common sweet dish that is prepared in most of the Indian house holds. This halva is a customary offering during Sathyanaraya Pooja. It is also called as Sapaatha Bhaksha.
Needless to say, this was one of our favourite dishes during our growing years. Since me and my little sister knew that this pudding could be conjured in minutes, we would often pester my mom to make it for us. Sajjige used to be our weekend breakfast treat. Even after all these years, I ask my mom to make sajjige for me every time I visit her. 

This recipe for the opulent dessert is just the basic recipe. There are several ways you can dress this dish up. You can flavour this pudding with chopped fruits like banana, pine apple or mango. Or, you can add other nuts like almonds, hazelnuts or walnuts. You can also caramelise the sugar for a contemeporary twist. This is one dessert where you can let your imagination go wild. This pudding when served hot can make an irresistible dessert. No matter how full you are, there is always room for at least two helpings of this dessert in the end

Rava Kesari recipe
Preparation time: 10min
Cooking time: 10min
Serves- 4-6


Rava or semolina- 1-1/2 cup
Ghee- 1 cup
Raisins- 2tbsp
Cashew nuts- 3tbsp, chopped
Milk- 2-1/2cup
Sugar- 1-1/2 cup
Cardamom powder- 1/2tsp
Salt- a small pinch
Saffron- 8-10 strands

  • Soak the saffron strands in a tea spoon of warm milk and set aside.
  • Heat a tea spoon of ghee in a pan, add the cashew nuts and raisins and fry till they turn brown. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  • Heat another tea spoon of ghee in the same pan.Add the semolina and fry till it turns brown and Fragrant. Take off the heat and keep aside.
  • Combine the milk, ghee and the saffron mixture in a thick bottomed saucepan and allow it to simmer for 3-4min. 
  • Gradually add the semolina and mix gently to break any lumps. Add the sugar and salt and mix well. Cover and allow the mixture to cook for 2-3min umtill all the liquid is absorbed.
  • Stir in the powdered cardamom and the fried nuts and raisins and mix well.
  • Serve rava kesari either hot or at room temperature

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Banana and coconut bread

This recipe should have been posted on my blog on Monday itself. Thanks to the bad internet connection, I had to wait for two days more just to click on the "publish" button. But then it is always better late than never isn't it?

Banana is one fruit that you are sure to find on my dining table on any given day. We have the habit of eating a banana everyday after dinner.  It so happened that during the last weekend, we dined out a couple of times and we went on a "no banana"phase. As a result, the bananas lost all their prime and my husband was all set to trash them. I hate to see food wasted. At first, I thought of baking the oatmeal banana muffins. But I had already baked them so many times, that it seemed to have lost it's novelty. So I googled for some recipes and I stumbled on this bread on I tweaked the recipe a bit to make it egg free as well as to adjust to my pantry requirements. The end result I must say was quite satisfactory. The bread turned out extremely moist and slightly chewy because of the coconut. The use of coconut and coconut milk gives a tropical feel to this bread. 

This banana coconut bread can either be served plain or it can be dressed up with some vanilla or lime glaze (recipe for the lime glaze can be found here). It can be served as a dessert or for breakfast or as a quick snack. It takes very little time to put this bread together and it is a definite hit with the kids. 

Banana and coconut bread recipe:
Preparation time- 20min
Baking time: 30min
Makes- 1 loaf

All purpose flour- 2 cups
Baking soda- 3/4tsp
Salt- 1/2tsp
Butter softened- 1/4cup
Sugar- 1 cup
Mashed banana- 1-1/4cup
Thick buttermilk- 1/4cup
Coconut milk- 1/4cup
Desiccated coconut- 1/2 cup+ 1tbsp
Vanilla extract- 1 tsp

  • Preheat the oven at 180C
  • Sift the flour along with the baking soda and salt and set aside.
  • In another bowl, cream the butter and sugar well. Add the mashed banana and butter milk and beat well.
  • Stir in the coconut milk and vanilla extract and beat until well blended.
  • Add the flour mixture and mix gently till well combined
  • Spoon the batter into a greased 9X5 loaf pan and sprinkle a table spoon of the desiccated coconut on top.
  • Bake at 180C for 40min or till an inserted skewer comes out clean.
  • Allow the bread to cool in the pan for 10min. Remove from the pan and cool the bread completely on a wire rack. 

This bread will be a part of Nancy's YBR event for the month of October

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Grape Juice

At last!! I am happy to say that summer is finally here. Yes!! The temperature is up since the past week and I have never been happier. As the days are getting longer, my energy level seems to have increased. Even the nasty flu that was caused by weather change could not dampen my spirits.

Summer- A time where the windows are open for the most part of the day. A time where flowers are in full bloom. The season when mangoes begin to sprout. Summer is the time when "madafu" or coconut water is sold in every corner of the street. Summer is also the time for ice creams, pop sickles  sorbets and all things cold. This season is also the time when salads and juices make regular appearances on the table. Apart from all these, one big advantage of summer is that the days are long and if the days are long, there is more time for food photography. Now do you need anymore reasons for not to love this season??

Summer is here and so is my juicer. I have been making quite a few juices since the past few days. But grape juice is something that I have made everyday for the last four days. Yeah it took me that long to photograph this drink right. 
Grape juice is something that I have loved since I was a kid. My mom used to make this juice whenever she brought the black grapes. I loved to watch the way she turned this "ugly" and "inedible" fruit into a beautiful,  nectar like liquid. My love for the juice did not end at the blending alone. I even loved to watch the way my mom strained the juice in the orange strainer. As a kid, even the strained pulp, somehow looked gorgeous in that Orange strainer. It's surprising how these small things always remain etched in your mind.

Did you know that grapes is one of the best nutritional fruits? It is considered to be one of the most beneficial juices. This "nectar of gods" has flavonoids that increase the good cholesterol  This juice has some anti aging properties and it reduces the risk of breast cancer. It relieves acidity and cough and helps to reduce weight. Apart from the health benefits, this pretty drink has the taste and feel of a sophisticated mock tail  A drink that you want to sip while lazing on the beach. Or like me, you can sip lazing on the sofa on a summer day listening to the tinkling of the wind chimes.

Grape Juice Recipe:
Preparation time: 5min
Cooking time: nil
Serves- 4

Grapes-1 cup or 200gm
Sugar- 3tbsp
Juice of half a lime
Water- 1-1/2cup

  • Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend till smooth.
  • Strain and serve immediately
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