Sunday, June 30, 2013

Karathe Chips ( Bitter gourd Crisps)

Karathe Chips is a recently learned recipe. In Konkani, Karathe means bitter gourd (bitter melon). This is a very easy recipe and requires only few ingredients (and of course they taste awesome). Hence I instantly fell in love with it. I am glad that I was able to learn it from my SIL. This was my first try in making it and they turned out just as she had made them. We enjoyed every bit of it.

Like many people, I am not a great of these bitter beauties. But trust me these chips turn out very tasty and don't taste bitter at all. Best thing is it can be stored for many days. I love to have these with rice and dal. Do give it a try and enjoy as I did :-)


  • Bitter gourd, medium sized- 4
  • Rice flour- 1/4 cup
  • Red chilli powder- To taste
  • Salt- To taste
  • Oil- For deep frying


Wash the bitter gourd and chop off its end. Then make thin slices of it.

Then remove the seeds from each slice and put them in a bowl. Now sprinkle with generous amount of salt and give a gentle mix.

Let it rest for 4-5 hours (I kept it over night). Now discard the liquid that has accumulated in the bowl. Then add the rice flour, red chilli powder and salt (only if required) and mix it well. Sprinkle little water at a time so that the flour coats the bitter gourd rings (mix it gently such that the rings do not break and all of them gets a coating).

Meanwhile keep the oil for heating. When the oil is hot, add each coated bitter gourd rings and fry them (in batches) until they turn golden brown and crispy.

Then put them on a paper towel to drain excess oil (I fried them in four batches). 
Karathe Chips is ready!!

Store them in an air tight container, once they cool. Above measurement serves 2-3 people and stays good upto a week.

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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Cornmeal Idli and Two Years of Blogging!!

Hello Everyone..You read it right..'Lakshmi Canteen' turned 'Two' today. Looking back- I still remember the day my husband gave me the idea of starting a blog in which I document all the Konkani recipes. I just nodded and thought to myself- "Really?"..Then I started working on it after a month and finally Lakshmi Canteen was born. With each passing day, I started to make my posts better. I also started to work more on the presentation of the final dish. And finally this is where I reached..But I always keep reminding myself- There is no end to learning. Whether it is cooking or something else. Each day is a surprise and I am looking forward to more vegeterian experiments in my kitchen. I would like to thank everyone for joining me in this exciting culinary journey :-)

Coming back to my recipe- Cornmeal Idli. This recipe is similar to my Rava Idli post. I got this recipe from here. I was totally impressed by her recipe (she has a good collection of video recipes). Never knew that we can make idlis using cornmeal. I made slight variations to the original recipe and the idlis turned out very tasty. Indeed a filling breakfast :-) Do try making these yellow beauties and enjoy!!


  • Yellow coarse Cornmeal*- 1 cup
  • Yogurt/curd, thick- 3/4 cup
  • Eno fruit salt- 3/4 tsp
  • Water- 3/4 cup (vary accordingly)
  • Coriander leaves (Cilantro)- 6-7 Sprigs
  • Ginger, grated- 1/2 tsp
  • Oil- 3-4 tsp
  • Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
  • Curry leaves- Few
  • Green Chillies- 3-4
  • Urad dal/Split black gram- 1 tsp
  • Chana dal/ Bengal gram- 1-2 tsp
  • Salt- To taste
  • Roasted Cashew nuts- As required
*You can substitute semolina(rava) for cornmeal, if you can't find it.


Chop green chilli, cilantro and grate ginger.

Heat oil and add mustard seeds. Once it starts spluttering, add chana dal, urad dal, chopped green chillies, grated ginger and curry leaves. Fry until chana dal and urad dal turns slight brown.

Once it turns light brown, add cornmeal and fry it until a nice aroma is got. This step might take 3-4 minutes. Cornmeal has to be constantly stirred and heat should be medium.

Once a nice aroma is got, turn off the heat and add chopped coriander leaves. Allow it to cool. Once it cools, add yogurt, water, salt.

Mix well. Let this mixture sit for half an hour.

Now grease the idli moulds with oil and keep the roasted cashew in each small mould.

Now add the eno fruit salt to the batter and mix well. Then start putting the batter in each mould (fill upto 3/4 th of it).

Stack them up and steam it for 15 minutes. Then allow it to cool for 5 minutes and then remove the idlis from the moulds using a spoon.

Cormeal Idlis are ready!!

Serve it hot with Coconut chutney or mint chutney. I served it with Sambhar. Above measurement makes 13 medium sized idlis.
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    Tuesday, June 25, 2013

    Kuve Pitta Duddali (Arrowroot Halwa)

    Kuve Pitta Duddali is a newly learnt dish. In Konkani, kuve peeta means arrowroot powder and duddali means halwa. I got this recipe from a cook book written by Jaya V Shenoy. This recipe is very simple and can be made within 15-20 minutes (cooking time). Its very hard to go wrong with the making of it and the best part is it doesn't demand any ghee :-)

    Arrowroot powder is generally used as a thickening agent. I have been thinking of making this from a long time. My mother never made this for us but she says that my grand mother used to make this regularly especially during summer time as it has a cooling effect on our body. I loved it the very first time I tried it. The halwa has a very different texture. Do try making this simple halwa and enjoy!!

    • Arrowroot powder(kuve peeta)- 1/2 cup
    • Sugar- 1/2 cup
    • Milk- 1/2 cup
    • Water- 1 1/2 cups
    • Cardamom pods- 2
    • Ghee- For greasing


    Take arrowroot powder in a bowl and add plenty of water to it and mix well. 

    Now allow this mixture to rest for half an hour. The powder settles at the bottom leaving clear water at the top.

    Now slowly drain the water (as much as you can). Then add 1 1/2 cups of water to the thick white paste and mix well. Now add this diluted paste to a kadai (or pan) along with milk and sugar. Mix well and start heating this mixture on a medium heat.

    Once the mixture gets heated, it starts to thicken. Keep mixing it continuously.

    Gradually the mixture thickens completely and reaches a halwa stage (as shown below). At this stage add cardamom powder and mix well.

    Then pour this mixture into a greased tray and even it out.

    Allow it to cool. Then cut it into desired shapes. 

    Kuve Pitta Duddali is ready!!

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

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    Thursday, June 20, 2013

    Ponsa Polo (Ripe Jackfruit Dosa)

    Ponsa Polo is a very simple breakfast. In Konkani, Ponosu means ripe jackfruit and polo means dosa (crepes). I got this recipe from my mother. This is my favorite dosa and it had been ages since I had this. This is my first try in making it and the first bite was the tastiest one:-)

    Jackfruit is abundantly available in Coastal Karnataka during summer. Generally we make dosas, idli, fritters, stir fry etc and have it for breakfast, lunch and evening snack. Jackfruit is a tasty fruit. The only thing which worries me about it- is cleaning. Recently we found fresh jackfruit in a Chinese store and hence picked it up and decided to make this and it turned out perfect. Thanks to my mother for the perfect measurements :-)

    • Rice- 1 cup
    • Ripe Jackfruit, chopped- 1 cup
    • Jaggery*- To taste
    • Cardamom pods- 2
    • Grated Coconut- 2 Tbsp
    • Salt- A pinch
    *The amount of jaggery required completely depends on how sweet the jackfruit is and how much more sweet you want. The jackfruit I used was mildly sweet. I like my dosas very sweet. Hence added more jaggery (nearly 1/3 cup). 


    Wash and soak the rice for 1-2 hours. 
    Remove the jackfruit pods and discard the seeds.

    Then give a rough chop.

    Now drain the water in which the rice was soaked. Transfer the rice along with chopped jackfruit, jaggery, cardamom pods and salt (you can also add the grated coconut too but I like to add to the batter to give it a nice texture).

    Then grind it without adding water to get a fine paste. At this point taste the batter to check for its sweetness. If desired add more and grind it further.

    Now transfer this paste to a bowl and add grated coconut and mix well. Add water in small quantities to get a thick batter but of pouring consistency (the batter has to be used immediately. If not, refrigerate it).

    Now heat a griddle (tawa) on a medium flame. When hot pour a ladel full of batter and spread it slightly (these dosas are generally thick and soft and they need to be cooked on a gentle heat. The dosa will burn on a high heat as it has jaggery in it).

    Once the lower part of the dosa turns golden- brown, flip it. 

    Wait till it gets golden- brown spots on the second side. Once done transfer it to a plate.
    Ponsa Polo is ready!!

    Serve it immediately with generous drizzle of ghee. Above measurement serves 2-3 people.

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    Wednesday, June 19, 2013

    Quick Vegetable- Pepper Rice (Microwave Method)

    Quick Vegetable- Pepper Rice is a simple rice recipe. I got this recipe from my husband. He used to make this regularly for his lunch box. 

    This recipe is very simple yet flavorful. The freshly ground pepper combined with cumin takes this rice to another level. I love this recipe and make it when I run out of ideas for lunch box. Do try this and I am sure you all will love it too :-)

    • Rice- 1/2 cup (I used Basmathi)
    • Cumin seeds/ Jeera- 1 tsp+ 1/2 tsp
    • Ghee (clarified butter)- 1-2 tsp
    • Freshly ground Pepper- To taste
    • Carrot- 1/2
    • Frozen peas- Handful
    • Beans, chopped- Handful (I used frozen)
    • Cauliflower- 4-5 florets
    • Salt- To taste
    Note: I have used the vegetables we like. Feel free to add your favorite veggies.


    Chop the carrot, cauliflower, beans.

    Now wash the rice and take it in a microwave safe bowl. Then add 1 1/4 cup of water, salt, few drops of oil, 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds and chopped veggies. Mix well.

    Now microwave it on high until all the water gets absorbed (It took 16 minutes for me. Check it every two minutes after 10 minutes of cooking).
    Once done, fluff it gently using a fork and allow it to cool slightly.

    Then finally add the seasoning.
    For seasoning- Heat ghee (it doesn't taste good if you use oil). Once hot, add 1 tsp of cumin seeds and fry until it changes color slightly. Then add pepper powder and turn off the heat. Add this to the cooked rice. Mix well. Quick Vegetable- Pepper Rice is ready!!

    Serve it as it is or with any curry of your choice. Above measurement serves one.

    Note: You can also make this without a microwave. Cook the rice- vegetable mixture in a cooker or in a pot on stove top.

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    Tuesday, June 18, 2013

    Baby Corn Manchurian

    Baby Corn Manchurian is a very popular Indo- Chinese dish. It is a very tasty dish and is liked by the kids and adults equally. This is one of my favorite and I learnt this recipe from my brother. Do try making this at home and enjoy :-)

    • Fresh Baby Corn*- 25- 26
    • Oil- 3 tsp + for deep frying
    • Garlic pods, big sized- 4-5
    • Bell pepper (capsicum), small sized- 1/4
    • Onion, medium sized- 1/2
    • Soy sauce- 1 Tbsp
    • Tomato ketchup- 1/4 cup
    • Chilli Garlic sauce- 1 tsp
    • Green Onion (scallions)- As required (optional)
    • Salt- To taste
    For Batter:
    • All Purpose Flour (Maida)- 1/4 cup
    • Corn Flour- 1/4 cup
    • Ginger- Garlic paste- 1 tsp
    • Salt- To taste
    *You can also use cauliflower or mushroom instead of baby corn.


    Cut each baby corn into two pieces.

    Also chop onions and slice garlic pods. Then cut the bell pepper into thin strips.

    Now prepare the batter. Take all purpose flour, corn flour, ginger- garlic paste (I used fresh) and salt in a mixing bowl. Add water in small amounts to make a thick batter.

    Add the baby corn pieces into the batter and mix it gently until all the pieces get a uniform coating. Meanwhile keep the oil for heating on medium- high heat.

    Now deep fry these battered pieces in batches until it turns golden brown on both sides. Once done drain them on a paper towel to drain excess oil. 

    Continue deep frying with the rest of the baby corns.
    Then take a wide bottomed pan and heat oil in it. Then add garlic slices, chopped onions and sliced bell pepper and start frying it on medium flame. Sprinkle little salt at this point.

    Once the onion turns slight brown, add the soy sauce and mix well. Then add tomato ketchup and chilli garlic sauce. Give a good mix.

    Then finally add the deep fried baby corns and mix well. Let it get heated for a minute. 

    Then turn off the heat. Sprinkle some chopped green onions. 
    Baby Corn Manchurian is ready!!

    Serve it hot as it is or along with noodles or fried rice. Above measurement serves two people.

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