Thursday, May 30, 2013

Celebrating 300th Post with Wheat Flour Halwa

Wheat Flour Halwa is a simple yet delicious halwa. I learnt making this from my mother. We call it 'Karkala Cake' as this is commonly made and served in many local hotels of Karkala (Karkala is a small village near Mangalore, Karnataka, India). It had really been a long time since I had this halwa. So thought of making it, to post as my 300th post. Yes, you read it right- 300th post!!

I cannot believe that I finished posting 299 recipes! The journey was indeed a good one so far. It is almost two years since I started blogging and I learnt a lot with each passing day. I am always thankful to my husband who has been a constant support in this journey. I also thank all my readers for encouraging me. Happy Cooking!!

  • Wheat Flour- 1 cup
  • Melted Ghee (Clarified butter)- 5 Tbsp
  • Sugar- 3/4 cup (adjust accordingly)
  • Water*- 2 cups
  • Cardamom pods- 4
  • Cashews and raisins- As required
*Use can as well use milk or a mixture of milk and water.


Heat 4 Tbsp of ghee in a deep pan (save 1 Tbsp of ghee to add at the end). Now add the chopped cashews and fry it until it turns light brown.

Then add the raisins and fry for few seconds. Then add the wheat flour and mix well until the ghee gets distributed evenly.

Now fry this mixture on a medium flame with constant stirring until it turns deep brown color. Care should be taken to stir it constantly to avoid burning. While the flour is getting roasted start heating water in another pot.

When the flour turns deep brown, add the hot water slowly with constant mixing (mixing has to be done constantly to avoid lumps).

Once it absorbs all the moisture, add sugar.

Mix well and heat the mixture for another 2 minutes. Then add the remaining 1 Tbsp of ghee and turn off the heat. Finally add the crushed cardamom and mix well. 
Wheat Flour Halwa is ready!!

Serve it warm or at room temperature. Above measurement serves 2-3 people.

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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Potato- Onion Curry (Coconut Based)

Potato- Onion Curry is a simple coconut based dish. I got this recipe from my mother. Potato is a universal vegetable. Addition of potatoes to any dish makes it very tasty. The potatoes taste amazingly good when they are deep fried or roasted. I was not a big fan of potato. But I have started to like it as I am married to a 'potato lover' family.

I grew eating this curry. My mother used to make this whenever she made chapathis. She has been making this for years but she doesn't remember the source of the recipe. Indeed this is a unique dish because the basic konkani masala is paired with garam masala (In konkani dishes we never use garam masala). I made this for the first time and the first bite into it took me down the memory lane. It had been years since I ate this. For the first time this curry tasted amazingly good. My husband liked this a lot. So at the end it was worth a try for me :-)

  • Potato, medium sized- 4
  • Onion, medium sized- 1
  • Grated Coconut, fresh/ frozen- 2/3 cup
  • Roasted Dry Red chilli- 3-4
  • Tamarind- A small piece (gooseberry sized)
  • Garam masala- 1 tsp (adjust accordingly)
  • Oil- 2 tsp
  • Mustard seeds- 3/4 tsp
  • Curry leaves- Few


Wash and peel the potatoes. Then cut them into small cubes. You can add them in a bowl containing water (to avoid browning). Then chop the onions as well (not too fine though).

Then start heating water in a pot (enough to cook four potatoes). Add salt to it. Once its hot, add the potato cubes, chopped onion and close it with a lid. Allow it to cook for 10- 15 minutes. While the potato, onion is cooking, prepare the masala.

For the masala: Take grated coconut along with roasted red chillies and tamarind in a mixer jar.

Grind them to get a smooth paste. Add water as required while grinding to get a thick paste.

Add this masala to the cooked potato- Onion mixture (they should turn soft yet hold their shape. Don't overcook the potato cubes). Bring it to a boil. Add more salt, if required. Mix well. Then finally add the garam masala powder.

Once it comes to a boil, continue heating for 3-4 more minutes and turn off the heat. The final consistency of the dish should be thick (I kept it little bit on medium thick). Then finally add the seasoning.

For Seasoning: Heat oil. Then add mustard seeds. Once it starts spluttering, add curry leaves and turn off the heat. Add this to the prepared curry and mix well. Potato- Onion Curry is ready!!

Serve it hot with Chapathi or phulkas. Above measurement serves 3-4 people.

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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Kokum Juice (Using Dried Peel)

Kokum Juice is a simple, healthy drink. Kokum Fruit (Birinda in Konkani) is commonly found in the western ghat region of India. It is a seasonal fruit and has a taste which is a mixture of sweet and tartness. These fruits are available in summer. People use the pulp  to make juice and then save the outer skin. The skin is then sun dried for many days and stored in an air tight container for year- long use. The dried skin is used to make saaru (Indian soup). The skin is also used as a tamarind substitute.

Kokum fruit has a cooling effect on our body. Hence it is good to have Kokum juice during summer time. Do give this a try if you can find the dried peel. 

  • Dried Kokum Peel- 8-9 pieces
  • Water- 2 cups
  • Jaggery/ Sugar- To taste


Dried Kokum Peel looks like this-

Now wash the dried peel and then add it in a pot containing water. Turn on the heat.

Let this mixture boil for 7-9 minutes until all the flavor and juices of the kokum is transferred to the water. Then turn off the heat and add jaagery/ sugar at this point. Mix well.

Then discard the kokum peel. Kokum juice is ready!!

Serve it warm or cold. Above measurement serves two people.

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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Flax Seed Chutney Powder

Flax seed Chutney Powder is a very healthy recipe. Few months back I came to know that flax seeds (or alsi seed) has omega-3 fatty acid which is very essential for our body. So I was searching for a recipe so that I can use these seeds. While searching, I bumped into this recipe and liked it instantly. Hence thought of giving it a try. As assumed it turned out very good and hence made it couple of times later.

This recipe is very simple and can be made within 20- 25 minutes. Do give it a try and get the goodness of the flax seeds.

  • Chanadal/ Split Chickpeas- 1/2 cup
  • Urad dal/ Split black gram- 1/4 cup
  • Flax seed- 1/2 cup
  • Oil- 2 tsp
  • Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
  • Asafoetida (Hing)- A big fat pinch
  • Curry leaves- 1 sprig
  • Dry Red Chilli (Byadgi variety)- 15
  • Dry coconut- 1/2 cup
  • Tamarind- A big lemon sized piece
  • Jaggery- 1 Tbsp
  • Salt- To taste
I just halved the above measurement as it lasts for a month for two of us.


The first three items under the 'ingredients' has to be dry roasted separately on a medium flame. 
First dry roast chanadal until it turns slight brown in color. Transfer it to a bowl. 
Now in the same pan repeat the procedure for urad dal. Transfer it to the same bowl. 
Now add the flax seed in the same pan and start frying it. When it starts to pop, close the pan with a lid for 10-20 seconds. Then transfer it to the same bowl.

Now in the same pan heat oil. Once hot add mustard seeds. Once it starts to splutter, add the asafoetida, curry leaves and whole dry red chillies. Once the red chillies gets fried (say foe 30 seconds to a minute), add the dry coconut, jaggery, tamarind and the roasted mixture (of urad dal, chana dal and flax seed). Mix well and turn off the heat. Allow it to cool.

Once it is cool enough, transfer the mixture to a dry mixer jar along with salt.

Grind it to get a powder. Flax seed Chutney Powder is ready.

Store it in an air tight container. Serve it with idli, dosa or rice.

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Friday, May 3, 2013

Tomato Saaru (Without Dal) ~ Quick Version

Tomato Saaru is a popular South Indian dish. There are many variations available in the internet world. This recipe is my mother's version. She has been making it for years now. It is a quick and easy recipe. It requires only few ingredients as well.

If you are very lazy to cook something that takes lot of time and effort, then these recipes always comes to help. The tanginess is well balanced by jaggery and the garlic seasoning makes it even more tasty.

  • Ripe Tomato, medium sized- 2
  • Green Chilli- 1-2
  • Jaggery- To taste
  • Oil- 2 tsp
  • Garlic pods, big sized- 5-6
  • Salt- To taste


Wash the tomatoes and cut them into quarters.

Now put them in a pot and add water just enough to soak them. Add salt to taste and then start cooking it on a medium heat.

Once the tomato looks cooked (it turns mushy), turn off the heat.

Now blend this in a blender (I used a hand blender). The final mixture doesn't have to be perfect. A few small pieces of tomato here and there shouldn't bother (you can also crush the cooked tomatoes using your hands. For that the tomatoes has to cool down completely). Now add the green chilli pieces (cut lengthwise) along with jaggery to the tomato puree and then start heating. Once it comes to a boil, taste it and add more salt or jaggery, if required (you can as well add some water, if the mixture is too thick). Then turn off the heat after a good boil of 2-3 minutes. Finally add the seasoning.

For seasoning: Heat the oil and add crushed garlic to it. Fry it until light brown and add it to prepared tomato saaru. Mix well.
Tomato Saaru is ready!!

Serve it hot along with rice. Above measurement serves two people.

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Godu Appo ( Sweet Paniyaram) ~ Using Broken Wheat

Godu Appo is a very popular sweet dish. It is commonly offered as an offering to lord Ganesha. There are many ways to make them. I have already shared a recipe using wheat flour, long time back. You can check it here. Appo can also be made using rice, semolina. I will be sharing the recipes of those soon. 

Few months back I found this recipe on a FB group (posted by Priya). I found it very interesting as I didn't know that appo can be made using broken wheat. Hence tried making this and absolutely loved them. These are healthy as broken wheat is used. The jaggery makes it even more special. If the appos are served with a good drizzle of ghee then it tastes heavenly. Do give this a try and I am sure everyone will love including lord Ganesha :-)

  • Broken Wheat (Dalia)- 1 cup
  • Grated Coconut, fresh/frozen- 1/2 cup
  • Grated or crushed jaggery- 1/2 to 2/3 cup
  • Cardamom pods- 4
  • Ghee (clarified butter)- As required


Wash broken wheat 2-3 times and then soak it in water for three hours (I used warm water. Hence soaked for two hours).

Now take grated coconut, jaggery and cardamom in a mixer jar.

Grind it without adding water until everything comes together.

Now add the completely drained soaked broken wheat to the ground mixture.

Grind it again until everything comes together (Don't make a fine paste).
Transfer it into a bowl and let it rest for an hour. The final consistency of the batter should be thick but of dropping consistency.

Now heat the special pan (I got it from India), used for making Appo. You can as well use this pan.

Add few drops of ghee in each small moulds. Then pour the batter in each of them.

Let it cook on a medium heat, covered/uncovered until it turns golden brown on bottom part. Then carefully turn them using a fork/spoon.

Fry the other side until you get a uniform color throughout. Remove them and serve. Godu Appo is ready!!

Serve it hot with generous drizzle of ghee on it. Above measurement makes 17 appos.

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