Monday, May 31, 2010

Color Mania #3: Pink Poori

Pink poori1

Pink poori!!!! That sounds crazy and exciting na ;)

Using beets was a quick thought that came up in my mind when I decided to play with colors in food. ;)

So I had to get a little unusual with it to make it more interesting. Was wondering if it would work out. But it really did. It tasted so good and the light pink look was so cute and attractive ;)

color mania

Color Mania #3: Pink

Did you know?
  • Pink signifies happiness and joy
  • Cheap dyes, made from the madder root, were used to produce the color pink
  • The pink ribbon is an internationally recognized symbol of hope and awareness in the fight against breast cancer.
  • Jaipur City is a foremost tourist attraction in India because of its superlative forts and its distinguished pink color to which the city owes its oft-used name "The Pink City".
  • Pinkie finger is the smallest finger on the human hand
  • Pink slip refers to the notice that employment is ending
  • Pink Collar refers to a particular class of jobs filled only by women
  • The color pink has always been closely associated with ladies and young girls.
  • In Japan, the color pink has a masculine association.
  • Pastries taste better when they come out of pink boxes or served on pink plates (it only works with sweets). Pink makes us crave sugar. Try to use this secret when you make pastries next time ;)
I have a big collection of watches and the best and treasured one is my Pink strapped watch ;) and my blog is pinky pink ;)

Pink poori4

Ingredients:

Beetroot - 1
Wheat flour - 1 cup
All purpose flour - 1 cup
Sooji/ Rava - 1/4 cup
Chilly powder - 2 tsp (according to your taste)
Sugar - 1 tsp
Salt - for taste

Pink poori

Method:

Chop and cook the beetroot. Grind and strain it to get the extract.

Now take all the dry ingredients in a bowl and make dough by adding the beetroot extract. Bring it to a poori dough consistency.

Roll into small balls. Press them in the poori press and fry in hot oil to make pooris.

The sooji and the sugar would do the magic of keeping the pooris puffed up for some time. :)

The beets give the lovely pink shade but do not worry, its a subtle flavor and would not affect the taste of the poori. Chilly powder makes the poori spicy and adds to the color too :)

You can also make chapathi with the same dough. Believe me, the color showed off so well in chapathi.

I am really sad that the color does not show off much in the pictures. May be I should have used white background. :( Anyways it does show off in real.

Pink poori3

You can serve this with any kind of subzi or chutney.

I made Chocho(chayote) chutney.

Ingredients:

Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Urad dhall - 1 tsp
Chocho - 1 full
Onion - 1
Green chillies - 3
Coconut scrapped - 3 tblsp
Tamarind extract - 1 tblsp
Salt - for taste

Method:

Take a tsp of oil in a pan and add mustard and urad dhall. Once it splutters, add chopped onions, green chillies and chocho and fry for a while. Now grind it with all the other ingredients.

Chocho chutney is ready.

You can serve this with poori or even with rice. :)

Pink poori2

Written by: Nithya
Send in your queries by clicking here.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Color Mania #2: Mango Sorbet & Pops

Mango Sorbet1
Could you believe it was 45 degrees yesterday! I am getting baked and my room resembles an oven :(

All I could do is to enjoy an ice cold sorbet and few fruit pops now and then and sit back the whole day right under the AC.

Enjoy the yellows of life. :)

It was really a challenge to click the sorbet and pops since they were melting down in seconds. The sorbet has a grainy texture which the photo failed to show. :(

color mania

Color Mania #2: Yellow

Did you know?
  • Yellow is psychologically the happiest color in the color spectrum.
  • Yellow depicts caution.
  • To the ancient Greeks, yellow denoted air.
  • Leonardo da Vinci wrote that yellow represented earth.
  • In India it is the symbol of the merchant and farmer.
  • In 10th-century, The doors of felons, traitors, and criminals were painted yellow in France.
  • Yellow is representative of "Greed" in Christianity.
  • School buses are mostly painted in yellow.
  • 75% of the pencils sold in the United States are painted yellow.
My All time favorite T20 team Chennai Super Kings has its official uniform color as Yellow :)

Mango Sorbet

Ingredients:

Mangoes - 2 large (Alphonso or Malgova)
Sugar - 1 cup
Water - 1 1/2 cups
Lime juice - 3 tsp
Salt - a pinch

Mango Sorbet3
Method:

Chop the mangoes into small pieces and puree it using a blender.

Heat the water in a pan and add sugar to it. Keep stirring it till the sugar melts completely. Allow it to cool for a while.

Now mix in the pureed mango to the sugar syrup and add lime juice and salt to it.

Transfer the sorbet to a freezer proof container and put it into the freezer. Whisk to break down crystals every hour. Do this using your ice cream maker if are lucky to have one. ;) Leave it to set over night.

Scoop out and serve with mango pieces :)

Mango Pops

Fill in the pop molds with the sorbet mixture and freeze it over night.

Get excited with yummy mango pops this summer. :)

Note: You can add some ginger extract or basil leaves or some cardamom to it to make it different and interesting.

Mango pops1
Written by: Nithya
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Monday, May 24, 2010

Color Mania #1: Purple Cabbage Rice

Purple cabbage rice4

Imagine life to be just black and white.... uffffff how boring could it be without colors. Colors break the monotony and they bring imense joy. :)

I am gonna freak with colors and celebrate Color Mania in my blog :) isn't it exciting to eat colorful??!!! :)

color mania

Color Mania #1: Purple

Did you know: -
  • Purple was the color of the first dye made by man. It was called "Mauveine" and was made out of coal tar. The recipe was discovered by William Henry Perkin in 1856.
  • In Japan, the color purple signifies wealth and position.
  • Purple denotes virtue and faith in Egypt.
  • In Thailand, purple is worn by a widow mourning her husband's death.
  • Purple was the royal color of the Caesars.
  • The purple in the U.S. military Purple Heart award represents courage.
  • Purple represents the planet Jupiter.
  • Purple is representative of "pride" in Christianity.
  • February is the month associated with the color purple and the birthstone for those born is February is amethyst.
  • Purple is the color of the highest denomination poker chip = $5,000
And you know, my first BSA Lady bird cycle was purple in color :) :) :)

So I looooooove purple and was dreaming of food in purple and here goes my purple creation just for you.

Purple cabbage rice1

Ingredients:


Purple cabbage - 1/2
Rice - 1 cup
Green chillies - 4
Onion - 1 large
Ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
Cloves - 3
Cardamom - 2
Cinnamon - 1 inch piece
White pepper - for taste (optional)
Salt - for taste

Purple cabbage rice3

Method:

Wash and soak rice in water for a while.

Dice onions into small pieces and split the green chillies.

In a pressure cooker, take few tsps of oil or ghee and add the spices. Fry for a min and then add the ginger garlic paste as well as the diced onions and chillies. Saute for a few minutes.

Dice cabbage roughly and grind in a mixie into a paste by liberally adding water to it.

Now take three cups of the ground cabbage and water mixture and add it to the pressure cooker. Drain the soaked rice and transfer it to the cooker. Close the lid and wait till steam comes.

When it starts to steam, open the lid and add salt. Mix well and close it again. Wait for two whistles.

Bright and vibrant Purple cabbage rice is ready to eat :)

Serve it with onion raitha.

Purple cabbage rice

Note:

I have used 1:3 ration of rice and water. Adjust this according to the rice variety you use.

Add some white pepper if you love your rice spicy.


Happy making and happy eating :)

Purple cabbage rice2

Written by: Nithya
Send in your queries by clicking here.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Bisibelabath / Sambhar Rice

Bisibelabath5

Bisibelabath, the so called Sambhar sadam is one of the most favorite dishes of mine. And I have a lot of nostalgic memories for this dish. :)

Years back, during my schooling my best buddy who is a native of Karnataka used to bring this dish for lunch and I still remember the way I used to crazily eat it. :) And since then, we have been making it at home regularly and all of us truly relish it.

Yes, bisibelabath or bisibelahuliyanna is a dish that originated in Karnataka and would be found in restaurants that serve Udupi cuisine. The large amount of fresh and home ground spices give this dish a unique aroma and taste that would tempt you to eat more and more :)

Bisibelabath

Ingredients:

Rice - 1 cup
Toor dhall - 1/2 cup
Fresh peas - 1/2 cup
Small onions - 1/2 cup
Carrots - 3
Potatoes - 2

Tamarind extract - 1 cup
Asafoetida - a pinch
Salt - for taste
Ghee - 3 tbl sp
Cashew nuts - few

For masala:

Coriander seeds(Dhaniya) - 3 tsp
Fenugreek(Vendhayam) - 1/2 tsp
Black gram dhall - 2 tsp
Bengal gram dhall - 1 1/2 tsp
Red Chillies - 10-15 according to your requirement
Cinnamon - 1 inch piece
Cloves - 2
Grated coconut - 1 1/2 tbl sp

Bisibelabath4

Method:

Cook dhall and rice together in pressure cooker by adding 6 cups of water.

Dice potatoes and carrots into small pieces and pressure cook them along with peas.

Bisibelabath2

Fry all the masala ingredients except coconut in one tsp of oil till they turn light brown. Now add the coconut and fry for just a minute and powder it.

Heat oil in a heavy bottomed vessel and fry the peeled onions for few minutes. Add tamarind extract to it and boil till the raw smell goes. Mix salt, asafoetida, cooked vegetables and powdered spices to it. Now add the cooked rice mixture and mix well till everything blends.

Heat ghee and fry the cashew nuts and garnish it on top of the bisibelabath.

Bisibelabath1

Serve it hot with raw onions or onion raitha :) Potato chips goes great with it too :)

Yummy bisibelabath is ready. Happy making :)

Bisibelabath3

Written by: Nithya
Send in your queries by clicking here.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Marinated Chillies / Moar Milagai

Moar Milagai1

"Make hay when the sun shines" goes the famous saying. I would re-frame it as "Make marinated chillies when the sun shines" ;)

Yes! Hot.. hotter.. and hottest is the summer now and this is when you can make all your vadams(fryums) and moar milagai varieties.


I have a lot of nostalgic memories about grandma making vadam and moar milagai at home. Me and sis used to sit in the terrace to safeguard it and would easily blame the squirrels for every vadam we eat up ;)


This time grandma was sweet enough to make and bring some for me :)


So just thought of posting about it and her secret methods are gonna be revealed here....


Moar Milagai3

There are four types of moar milagai that granny makes. Each of it has its own taste and is yumm is all sense. Goes great along with creamy curd rice :)

Marinated chillies/ Moar Milagai

Moar Milagai7

You can use Long green chillies or the fat and short ones to make this variety of moar milagai.

Ingredients:

Long green chillies/Short and fat chillies - 1 kg
Sour Butter Milk - 1 Lt

Asafoetida(perungayam) - 2 tsp

Salt - 3/4 cup


Moar Milagai6

Method:

Wash and slit the chillies lengthwise, make sure you don't completely cut them off from their stalks. Carefully make a very small slit in the small variety. Now soak it in the buttermilk mixed with salt and asafoetida. Allow it to marinate for 2 to 3 days.

Remove the chillies from the butter milk and dry it on a thick plastic sheet under the hot sun. Soak the chillies in the buttermilk again at night. Dry it again the next day and carry on with this process for 3-4 days. The chillies would turn pale and yellow as in the picture, by the time it gets dried well.


Store them in air tight containers. You can preserve it for almost a year.


Fry them in medium hot oil for a while till it turns dark brown and crisp.

Serve it with creamy curd rice. Yummy moar milagai is ready to eat :)



Stuffed Marinated Chillies / Stuffed Moar Milagai


Moar Milagai4

Fat chillies are chosen to make such stuffed marinated chillies. Ramanathapuram is famous for this variety of chillies.

Ingredients:

Fat chillies - 1 kg
Fenugreek (Vandhayam) - 4 tsp
Cumin seeds (Jeeragam) - 5 tsp
Coriander seeds (Dhaniya) - 5 tsp
Asafoetida (Perungayam) - 4 tsp
Sour Curd - 1 cup
Salt - 3/4 cup

Method:

Wash and slit the fat chillies in the center to open it up like a pouch.

Coarsely grind fenugreek seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, asafoetida and salt together without adding water.

Now fill in the ground ingredients into the slit made in the chillies.

Soak the filled chillies in the curd and allow it to marinate for 2 days. Remove the chillies from the curd and dry it on a thick plastic sheet under the hot sun. Soak the chillies in the curd again at night. Dry it again the next day and carry on with this process for 3-4 days. The chillies would turn pale and yellow by the time it gets dried well.

Store them in air tight containers. You can preserve it for almost a year.


Fry them in medium hot oil for a while till it turns dark brown and crisp. Serve with curd rice.

These stuffed chillies are slightly hotter than the other varieties. Meant for fiery ppl :)


Marinated chilly patties / Moar milagai vadai

Moar Milagai5

This is pretty similar to the stuffed chillies but with a small difference in the method and a big difference in the taste :)

Ingredients:

Chillies - 1 kg
Urad dhall (Ulutham paruppu) - 1 cup
Fenugreek (Vandhayam) - 4 tsp
Cumin seeds (Jeeragam) - 5 tsp
Coriander seeds (Dhaniya) - 5 tsp
Asafoetida (Perungayam) - 4 tsp
Mustard seeds (Kadugu) - 3 tsp
Sour Curd - 1 cup
Salt - 3/4 cup

Method:

Soak the urad dhall in water for 2 hours and grind it into a coarse and thick paste adding just enough water.

Coarsely grind fenugreek seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds and asafoetida.

Grind the chillies and salt together into a coarse paste too without adding water.

Now mix the curd, urad dhall paste, coarsely ground seeds, mustard seeds and the chilly paste together into a thick mixture.

Now make small patties with the mixture on a thick plastic sheet and allow it to dry under the sun for few days until it is completely dry.

Store them in air tight containers. You can preserve it for almost a year.

Fry them in medium hot oil for a while till it turns dark brown and the mustard seeds in it starts crackling.

Make curd rice even more yummy with this accompaniment :)

Enjoy making. :) Happy eating :)


Moar Milagai

All credits and a big thanks goes to grandma for this lovely delicacy. :)

Written by: Nithya
Send in your queries by clicking here.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Black Nightshade Greens Rice / Manathakkali Keerai Saadam

Black Nightshade rice

There are nearly a 1000 varieties of plants that have edible leaves says Wikipedia. ;) isn't that wow??..

When you have so much, it really demands different varieties of dishes to be made with it.

Of course its more time consuming to clean the greens and chop them, but then when you get to know that it is low in calories, low in fat, high in protein per calorie, high in dietary fiber, high in iron and calcium, and very high in phytochemicals such as vitamin C, carotenoids, lutein and folic acid as well as Vitamin K, its really hard to ignore it.

Verdict: A greens dish a week will keep diseased away. :)

Black Nightshade rice4
Photo Courtesy: http://www.agroatlas.ru/en/content/weeds/Solanum_nigrum/

Ingredients:

Greens - 1 cup
Coconut - 3 tblsp
Green chilies - 3
Curd - 1/2 cup
Cashew nuts - 4
Asafoetida - a pinch
Salt - for taste

Black Nightshade rice2

Method:

Cook greens in microwave or stove top. Grind it along with coconut, green chillies, cashews, salt and asafoetida. Now mix in the churned curd along with it. Season with mustard seeds.

Mix this paste with rice to make greens rice. :)


Black Nightshade rice1

Serving tips:

The rice goes best with raw onions.

You can also use it as a spread for bread.

Happy making and healthy eating :)

Black Nightshade rice3


I am happy to send this to Preeti's "Green gourmet" event happening in her lovely blog - W'rite' Food.

Written by: Nithya
Send in your queries by clicking here.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Fried Rice - My Style

Fried rice my style2

Mixed rice scores more than anything else in my lunch menu chart. Lots of kids would say "same pinch" to me right now ;) And for sure its an easy packing menu for parents too.

When I talk about mixed rice, fried rice is one thing that many of us would enjoy, be it Chinese style or Indian style. More of veggies and more of vitamins. :)

So here is my style of fried rice just for you all :)

Fried rice my style

Ingredients:


Rice - 1 cup
Mixed diced vegetables - 1 cup (Carrot, beans, peas, potato etc)
Ginger - 1/4 inch piece
Garlic - 4 pods
Paprika - 2 tsp
Chilly powder - for taste
Gharam masala - 1/2 tsp
Salt - for taste
Olive oil

Fried rice my style3
Method:

Cook rice and allow it to cool on a plate. Add few drops of ghee or olive oil to it and separate it into grains. Keep this aside.

Grind ginger and garlic together into a paste.

In a pan take 2 tsp of olive oil and add the ginger garlic paste as well as chopped vegetables. Saute well for few minutes and add 1/4 cup of water and cook the vegetables till tender.

Once done add the rice, salt, paprika, gharam masala and chilly powder to it and saute till everything blends well.

Yummy friend rice is done. :) Serve it hot with potato chips :)

Happy making and happy eating too :)

Fried rice my style1

Written by:
Nithya
Send in your queries by clicking here.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Carrot & Orange Soup

Carrot orange soup

I just love fruits so much. In fact there isn't a fruit that I deny eating. :) wow.. I just realized that. :)

I was always skeptical about cooking fruits and felt that "they taste really good as it is, then why cook them?". But then I was proved wrong when I tried this soup today.

Orange in a soup is extremely aromatic and taste fantastic too. The hint of the zest makes the soup different and exciting.

Do I need to say more when carrots are included too?! ;)

Carrot orange soup2

Ingredients:

Orange - 2 large
Carrots - 3
Zest of orange - 2 tsp
Onion - 1
Olive oil - 2 tsp
Vegetable stock - 2 cups
Paprika - 1/2 tsp (optional - but it definitely gives a good flavor)
Salt - for taste
Pepper - for taste

Carrot orange soup1
Method:

Heat olive oil in a pan and add roughly chopped onions and orange zest. Fry for few mins in low flame.

Now add chopped carrots and vegetable stock and bring to boil. Let it go on till carrots turn tender. Once done, remove from heat and puree it in a blender.

Boil the onion carrot puree in a fresh pan adding salt and paprika to it. Remove from the heat and add the orange juice. Do not heat the soup after adding orange juice, the flavor will disappear or even turn bitter. Finally add some cream and pepper before serving. :)

Orange and carrot soup is ready to eat. Enjoy a juicy soup :)

Carrot orange soup5
Note:

Zest, also known as citrus peel, is a food ingredient that is prepared by scraping or cutting from the outer, colorful skin of citrus fruits such as lemon, orange, citron and lime. Zest is used to add flavor to foods.

Check this link to know how to scrape zest of citrus fruits.

Paprika is a spice made from grinding the dried fruits of Capsicum. The seasoning is used in many cuisines to add color and flavor to dishes.

Carrot and orange soup8

Written by: Nithya
Send in your queries by clicking here.


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