Monday, November 14, 2011


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Andhra chicken curry

When the hubby made a puppy face and asked “can you make chicken gravy with rice today please?” It did melt my heart, but I couldn’t help remembering the horrendous disasters I had with a simple chicken curry. The next few words out the husbands mouth “Ask mom how to make it” and then I was more determined than ever to make a chicken curry of my own, I was determined to make it as tasty as I could... And yes, my determination did yield some spicy fruit... Me: “is the curry good?” Husband: “Yes, Yummy!” Me: “Great, so my recipe worked...” Husband: Stares at me and asks “u dint ask mom how to make this?” Me: “Nope” and I give a toothy smile:-D
½ kg chicken (preferably chicken thigh) Marinade: 2 tbsp curd ¼ tsp turmeric ½ tsp salt Juice of half lemon Mix all the marinade ingredients in a bowl and rub it through the chicken and let it marinate for 20 minutes. Ingredients 3 Tbsp oil 1 green cardamom ½ inch cinnamon 2 cloves 5-6 black pepper corns 3 green chilies slit into half (adjust according to heat tolerance) 3 medium sized onions, 2 medium sized tomatoes 3 tbsp ginger garlic paste 3 tbsp freshly grated coconut 1 tsp coriander powder 1 ½ tsp chili powder ½ tsp roasted cumin powder ½ tsp garam masala Salt to taste 1 bunch coriander leaves Cut 2 onions into slivers and keep aside. Roughly chop one onion, 2 tomatoes and puree in a mixer (Food processor) and keep aside. Heat oil in a pan; add the chicken pieces and fry for 5-8 minutes till they turn light golden brown. Take out the chicken keep aside. In the same oil, add cardamom, cinnamon, cloves and peppercorns. Sauté for 1 minute, add the onions fry till translucent ( About 4 minutes ), then add the ginger garlic paste and sauté for 4 minutes ,add in the coconut and fry for another 3-4 minutes. Now add the onion and tomato puree, half bunch chopped coriander and fry till oil starts separating. Add in the cumin, coriander and chili powder and fry for 2 minutes. Add 2 ½ cups of water cover and cook for 10 minutes. Then add in the chicken pieces, salt, cover and cook for about 15-20 minutes, till the gravy thickens. Garnish with chopped coriander and serve with Rice or roti. Note: If using chicken breast, fry the chicken till 80 % cooked and add cook the chicken in gravy only for 5 minutes. Cooking the chicken breast in tomato sauce tends to make it rubbery.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Nune Vankaya Kura / Stuffed Brinjal in spicy coconut gravy

This a very classic dish made my by MIL, she makes to such perfection that you can never stop eating it. It goes well with anything, with dosa, rice, roti… or just slather some gravy on the bread, wedge a lil aubergine between 2 slices add some fresh salad to it and you are good to go! It is a versatile, very forgiving dish; you can sneak in some more spices or just leave out some and it will still taste good.. But I followed my MILs recipe to the T as the hubby is not very happy with experimenting as he loves this dish as his mom makes it... so I dint have much freedom to fiddle with it..
What all is needed 1. ½ KG fresh small purple brinjals. ( Preferable even in size ) 2. ½ cup coconut pieces/1/4 cup shredded coconut 3. ¼ cup peanuts ( If allergic to nuts, replace with same amount of coconut/ add a large tomato ) 4. 3 tbsp white sesame seeds ( Dry roast and keep aside ) 5. Key lime size tamarind, soaked in warm water for 15 minutes / 2 tbsp thick tamarind paste 6. 6 cloves garlic 7. 1 large onion cut into chunks 8. 4 tbsp red chili powder 9. 1 tbsp coriander powder 10. Sprig of curry leaves 11. 1 tsp each mustard seeds, cumin seeds 12. ¼ tsp turmeric powder 13. 1 green cardamom,2 cloves, ½ inch cinnamon stick 14. ¼ tsp fenugreek powder ( Dry roast and grind fenugreek seeds ) 15. ¼ + ¼ cup oil 16. 1 liter tap water, add 2 tsp salt to it and keep aside 17. 1 bunch coriander leaves
Add the cocnut,peanuts (if using, else tomato ), toasted sesame seeds, onion, garlic, chili powder, coriander powder, tamarind paste in a food processor / mixie and pulse to form a smooth paste. Heat ¼ cup oil in a pan, add ingredients 10-13 to the oil and toast for 2 minutes, and then add the coconut paste and fry for 15-20 minutes on a medium heat till the oil separates and take off heat and let it cool. While the paste cooks, wash the brinjals, keep the stems intact, hold each brinjal near the stem and make a “+ “shaped slit from the broad base. Now put these slit brinjals in the salted water. Stuffing the brinjals: Gentle open the slits and put 1 tbsp coconut paste in the slit. Now, put a wide pan on heat and add ¼ cup oil and heat. Add the fenugreek paste and fry for 20 seconds, now gently place all the stuffed brinjals. Fry on each side for about 2 minutes. Now add the rest of the coconut paste, add 2 cups of water and half bunch chopped coriander , cover and cook for 25 minutes / till the brinjals are soft but not mushy ( Test by picking one brinjal by its stem, it should hold shape but should not fall off the stem/ press and see if it gives any hard resistance ) If using pressure cooker, cook on low flame till 3 whistles.
Garnish with some more coariander and serve.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Salted Caramel and crunchy caramel chocolates

This post will be dedicated to my darling husband!.. cause the recipe that I am going to share is a sweet one and the surprise is that the DH doesn't run away at the name of sweet... but he loves this as they taste similar to the Cadbury's 5 star chocolate and this was the first ever chocolate the DH had had as a child and loves it with his heart and soul!!
caramel.. as complicated as it sounds... it is one of the most easiest things that you can make... so here goes the recipe.. Ingredients for the caramel 1. 200 ml cream ( I used Amul cream ) 2. 1 1/2 cups caster sugar 3. 1 cup water 4. 1/4 tsp cinnamon 5. 1 tsp vanilla extract 6. 1/8 tsp salt in a heavy bottomed pan, pour in the water, add the sugar in the center of the pan. Let the sugar melt by itself on a low heat, restrain from stirring. once the sugar is completely melted add the cinnamon and vanilla, turn the flame to high and allow the sugar to turn a golden brown. The whole process may take from 10-15 minutes. Keep an eye on the pan as in no time the beautiful golden brown will turn to a black burnt mess. while the sugar is melting, heat the cream in microwave for about 30 seconds to bring it to a thin pour-able consistency. once the sugar is turned golden brown, reduce heat to low,wear oven mitts, whisk the cream into the sugar syrup. whisk for 2 minutes. Take off heat, add salt whisk and leave it to cool off completely.
ingredients for the chocolates 1. 100 grams semi sweet cooking chocolate 2. 20 grams rice crispies and corn flakes crushed slightly 3. and of course the caramel chop the chocolate into very small identical pieces, put it in a microwave safe bowl, heat in microwave for 30 seconds, take out the bowl and stir with a spoon. heat again for 30 seconds in microwave and stir with a spoon. Note : when chocolate is in the microwave do not go by the look of the chocolate, it will hold shape even when it is almost melted. take a chocolate mold, pour 1/4 tsp chocolate in each mold, then add some caramle, sprinkle some corn falkes mixture and fill the mold with chocolate again. Freeze for 20-30 minutes.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Lahsun Chutney

I tasted this chutney from my roomie a few years ago, she used to get it in small zip lock bags and it used to disappear in no time. I got the recipe from Janhavi's ( The roomie )mom... she is an amazing cook.. and we had the best food when we visited them in Mumbai.this chutney almost tastes like the south Indian ground nut podi, But it had a very distinct smell and taste of garlic... So is the name lahsun chutney.. A very popular accompaniment in Maharashtra… it can be had with any Indian meal. You can use it a spread on your sandwiches also…


1 full dry coconut
¼ cup peanuts
10 dry red chilies (modify according to spice tolerance)
15 small cloves of garlic (if using large cloves, cut down to 10)
2 tsp sugar
Salt to taste

Break the coconut into small bite sized pieces. Dry roast separately the coconut till it is golden brown, dry roast the peanuts, red chilies. Set aside to cool. Remove the skins of the peanuts. Meanwhile peel the garlic. Put all the ingredients in a mixer grinder and pulse to a fine powder. Store in an airtight container.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Raw/green tomato chutney

I tasted this beautifully tangy chutney when one of my colleague brought it in her lunch box... it had the sour n hot taste... I immediately asked her for the recipe... but sadly, she dint know all the ingredients... all she could say was it is made of green tomatoes... so my vigorous search on the internet, showed me umpteen recipes.... but none of the recipes gave me the "yes this is it" kind of feeling. so I got down to test my palette, and yay!! the end results were amazing... :-)

4 medium sized firm green tomatoes

1/2 medium sized onion
1/4 cup coriander leaves ( Loosely packed )
3 cloves of garlic
1 inch ginger
8 dry red chilies ( adjust according to heat tolerance )
salt to taste
1/4 tsp amchur
1/2 tsp powdered jaggery

dry roast and grind 1/4 cup peanuts with 2 red chilies and keep aside.

for tempering

5 tbsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
10 curry leaves
1/4 tsp hing/asafetida

roughly chop the green tomatoes, onion and coriander. Blend tomatoes, onions, coriander, garlic, ginger, red chilies and salt in a mixie.

Heat oil, add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, hing, curry leaves and fry for a minutes. then add the blended paste of tomatoes and fry till the oil leaves the sides of the pan. then add the jaggery powder, amchur, 2 tbsps of peanut powder and cook for 5 minutes. serve with steamed rice or chapati... this can be had as a chutney with idli/dosa.
Sending this post for back to basics B2B event hosted originally by, B2B chtney event hosted by Siri @

Friday, August 5, 2011

Puliyogare / Tamarind rice

In southern India any festival is incomplete without this dish. It is one of those dishes which is very frequently served in many temples as an offering/ prasadam. It is a spicy tangy preparation and is widely eaten as a breakfast too. It is very popular in Tamil and Telugu households...
Tamarind – ¾ cup
Jaggery - 1 tsp ground
1 cup warm water
½ tsp methi seeds
1 tsp dhaniya seeds
½ tsp black pepper
Dry roast all the above ingredients and make a powder in a blender.
For tempering
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Dry Red chilies – 8-10 ( according to the spice that you can handle ) broken into small peices
Curry leaves – 15
Chana dal – 1 tsp
Urad dal – 1 tsp
Asafetida powdered - 1/4 tsp ( use less if using the hard and dark variety )
Oil – 10 tsps
Salt to taste
Coriander leaves for garnish.
Soak the tamarind in 1 cup of warm water for 15 minutes and pulse it in a blender to get a thick paste, run it through a sieve and Keep aside.
Heat oil in a pan, once the oil is hot, add the mustard seeds and let them splutter, add the asafetida, then add red chilies, chana dal, urad dal and fry for about 1 minute, add curry leaves, then add the tamarind pulp. Boil it till the oil starts separating ( about 10 minutes on low flame ), then add the powder made of methi dhaniya and pepper, stir and cook for another 5 minutes add salt according to taste.

Cook 2 cups of rice in 3 ¾ cups of water. Do not mush the rice as each grain needs to be separate. Mix the prepared past according to taste, garnish with coriander leaves.