Thursday, November 21, 2013

Adai- Rice and lentil crepes

A few months back a reader had commented that this blog lacks some Indian breakfast recipes. And I completely agree with that. The reason there are not many breakfast recipes is because, our breakfast mainly consists of either cheese Sandwich or Granola. The elaborate Indian breakfasts is reserved only for weekends. During weekends, we make sure that we have a relaxed and filling breakfast. In fact, I spend so much time in relaxing and savoring each morsel of my breakfast that I just don't get a chance to photograph the dish. But these days I am working on that. I try and wake up a little early so that I can get the breakfast ready and photograph the before serving. I did exactly that with these crepes a few days back.

During my growing years, Adai made a frequent appearance on our breakfast table. Since amma was working, she used to make these pretty often. Since these crepes does not need any fermentation, like dosa, they can be prepared instantly after grinding. Unlike dosa, the adai has a mixture of all the lentils. Because of which, this crepe is a tad bit more healthier and filling than the dosa.

There are many recipes for the adai. but I follow the recipe that I had read a long time back in a Kannada weekly. This recipe works perfectly for me. The Adais come out brown and crisp. 
The adai can be made served with any kind of chutney or with the humble chutney powder. But personally, I just love having adais with coconut chutney and a huge dollop of butter. Ah!!! That's what I call heaven.

Adai Recipe:
Preparation time: 10min+ soaking time
Makes- Approximately 20 adais

Rice (preferably sona masoori) - 1 cup heaped
Toor dal or split pigeon peas- 3tbsp
Chana dal or bengal gram- 3tbsp
Moong dal or split green gram- 3tbsp
Urad dal or split black gram- 3tbsp
Poha or beaten rice- 3tbsp
Kashmiri red chilies- 3-4
Freshly grated coconut- 2tbsp (optional)
Salt to taste
Curry leaves a few
Oil to shallow fry- As required

Equpment required:
A wet grinder or blender
A non stick or cast iron girdle or skillet
A spatula

  • Wash and Soak the rice, lentils, beaten rice and red chilies in 3 cups of water for 5-6hrs or overnight.
  • Grind the soaked mixture, coconut and curry leaves to a fine batter. Transfer the batter to a vessel and add salt and water to make a loose batter. The consistency of the batter should be such that that it coats the back of the spoon.
  • Heat a skillet and pour a ladle full of batter to the skillet and immediately spread the batter in circular motion so that the batter spreads to the edges. 
  • Pour a tea spoon of oil around the edges and cook the crepe till brown and crisp.
  • Carefully remove the adai from the skillet and serve hot with coconut chutney.
  • The red chilies can be replaced with green chilies.
  • Pepper corns can be added to make the adai extra spicy.
  • You can add vegetables like grated carrot and finely chopped onions to give the crepes a healthy boost and color.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Curried rice noodles

I love noodles. There I said it!!! Noodles of all forms are my favorite. I like them so much that you can always find a packet of noodles in my pantry. There is something irresistible about this stringy food. To me noodles is the ultimate comfort food. You can cook the noodles in a hundred ways using a myriad of ingredients. 

As for this rice noodles, I have used the humble curry powder and the fiery Sri racha sauce to flavor the dish. This wholesome noodle dish is full of flavor and taste. But what I really like about this dish is the fact that it can be put together in no time. One the vegetables are chopped and the noodles are cooked, it hardly takes anytime to put this dish together. If you feel that veggies are not your thing, then you can cook this vibrant dish with Paneer or tofu as well or with meat as well. Now isn't this versatile?

The curried rice noodle was huge hit with me and the kiddo. But S said that he preferred the hakka noodle to this anyway. But then this opinion is from a man who just can't like a new flavor. As for me, I feel that this is a fun dish to make as well to eat. For I thoroughly enjoyed this spicy noodle dish!!

Curried rice noodles recipe:
Preparation time: 30min
Cooking time: 10min
Serves- 4

Rice noodles- 200gm
Carrot- 1 med, chopped into thin strips
French beans- 6-8, stringed and chopped diagonally
Red and yellow bell pepper- 1/2 of each, chopped into thin strips
Cabbage- 1/2 cup, shredded
Ginger-garlic paste- 2 tsp
Light soya sauce- 3tbsp
Sriracha sauce- 1-2 tsp
Salt to taste
Freshly ground black pepper- 1/4 tsp
Curry powder- 2tsp
Sugar- 1/2tsp
Rice Vinegar- 1/2tsp
Sesame oil- 2tbsp
Spring onion- 3tbsp, whites and greens separated chopped into 1" pieces
Lemon wedges to serve
Bean sprouts- 1/4 cup

  • Cook the noodles as per the package instructions and keep aside
  • Heat oil in a large thick bottomed wok, and add the ginger-garlic paste and fry till the raw smell goes.
  • Add the spring onion whites, carrot and french beans and fry for 3-4 min till they are tender.
  • Stir in the cabbage and bell pepper and fry for 2min more. Add the soya sauce, vinegar, salt sriracha sauce, and pepper and mix well.
  • Add the curry powder and 2tbsp of water and mix quickly. Stir in the cooked noodles and the bean sprouts and mix well.
  • Turn off the heat. Garnish with spring onion greens and serve hot with lemon wedges on the side.

  • I used the every day curry powder for I did not find the oriental curry powder. Despite this I felt that this did have an oriental flavor. Maybe it was because of the vinegar and the sauces.
  • If you do not have the sriracha sauce, then replace it with chili flakes and increase the vinegar to 1 tsp.
  • Rice vinegar can be replaced with normal white vinegar.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Seven cups Burfi

There. I am late again. The Diwlai festivities are almost over and here I am posting the recipe that I had made for the festivities. But you cannot blame me for being late. The last three days has been hectic but equally fun. I had been busy cooking, shopping, visiting friends and family, and more cooking, bursting crackers, decorating the house and some more cooking. This Diwali has been one of the most fun filled Diwalis ever.

Now coming to this recipe, this is one of the most common edible gifts that is given. This dish is extremely versatile and the recipe can be moderated to your tastes. The seven cups barfi is very easy to our together and tastes brilliant. Perhaps it is because of this attribute, this fudge makes a great gift option for Diwali. 

This recipe is from S's paternal aunt who is an excellent cook. Her Mysore Pak and Seven cups are just out of this world. I vividly remember her instructions when she had given the recipe. She had asked me to mix all the ingredients and keep mixing till I could mix no more. That indeed was a great tip. It is only when the mixing becomes difficult that you will know that the fudge is ready to be transferred to the greased plate. This, indeed is a no fail recipe. So this my friends, is my sweet treat for Diwali. It just takes a few minutes to put together and for some thing so simple, it tastes absolutely delicious!!!

Seven cups Burfi recipe:
Preparation time: 10min
Cooking time: 20-30min
Makes- 25-30 pcs

Besan or gram flour- 1 cup or 240gm
Ghee or clarified butter- 1 cup+2tsp
Freshly grated coconut- 1 cup
Milk- 1 cup
Sugar- 3 cups
Cardamom powder- 1/2tsp
Saffron- a pinch, Toasted and crushed (optional)
Slivered almonds to garnish- optional


  • Grease a plate or tray with ghee and keep aside
  • Heat a tsp of ghee in a  thick bottomed wok. Add the gram flour and fry till the flour is fragrant and keep aside.
  • In the same wok, heat the remaining ghee, add the milk and sugar and mix till the sugar is dissolved.
  • Stir in the coconut and gram flour and mix on low flame for 5 to 10min. At this point you will see the mixture start to bubble.
  • Keep stirring the mixture by scraping the sides to avoid burning.
  • Continue with the mixing till the mixture thickens and it begins to leave sides.
  • Keep mixing till the mixing process becomes difficult. At this stage, stir in the powdered cardamom and saffron and mix well.
  • Take off the heat and tip the contents to the greased  tray and flatten the mixture with a spatula.
  • Allow the mixture to cool for a few seconds before cutting them into desired shapes.
  • Leave it undisturbed till the burfi is cooled completely and serve immediately or store in an airtight container.
  • For a variation, you can replace the coconut with ground nuts like cashews or almonds. Or with carrots. 
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