Sunday, April 20, 2014

Plantain Masala Curry / Vazhakkai Poriyal

 photo Plantaincurry_zpsa6e70da3.jpg

I love and respect the plantain tree! Its one tree which could be useful for men from top to bottom :)

Plantain is a very versatile vegetable since it can simply take the flavors of the masala that we use and taste yummy. This time I tried a new version of curry with it by infusing two flavors - garlic and saunf. It turned out to be extremely aromatic and delicious :)

 photo Plantaincurry2_zpsf689a9d8.jpg

Ingredients:

Plantain / Vazhakkai - 2
Saunf / Sombu - 2 tsp
Urad dhall - 1 tsp
Garlic pods - 4
Curry leaves - few
Mustard - 1/2 tsp
Chilly powder - 1 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Salt - for taste

 photo Plantaincurry3_zps9fe47298.jpg

Method:

Take saunf and urad dhall in a dry pan and roast it for two minutes. Now powder this in a mixie and keep it aside. 

Peel and chop the plantain into small square pieces. 

Take 2 tblsp of oil in a pan and crackle mustard seeds, curry leaves and now add the chopped plantain pieces and fry until the plantain becomes soft and cooked. 

Add salt, turmeric powder, chilly powder and the above made saunf & dhall powder to the plantain and mix well. 

Now crush the garlic pods roughly with a mortar and pestle and drop it into the curry. Mix well and fry for few minutes. 

Transfer to the serving bowl. 

Aromatic plantain masala curry is ready :) 

Serve hot with rasam rice or curd rice :)

 photo Plantaincurry1_zpsdb6523d3.jpg

Written by: Nithya
Send in your queries by clicking here

Friday, April 11, 2014

Paneer Samosa / Cottage cheese Samosa

 photo Paneersamosa3_zps70a27490.jpg

Fried snacks always have a special taste!! I am sure no one would deny this fact. When compared to bajji's and bonda's, this little samosa steals the list and goes to the top easily for me. I like samosa's a lot, be it the one from the near by road stall or one from the reputed chaat houses. I just love these mildly spiced crispy beauties a lot :)

It so happened that I found a pack of ready made samosa patty strips during my grocery shopping and I couldnt not control drooling and thinking of various options of fillings :) Immediately picked a pack and did it the very same evening and enjoyed for the evening snack :) 

This is first of the fillings that I tried with the soft cottage cheese. Wait for more experiments to come! :P

 photo Paneersamosa1_zpsbf31df92.jpg

Ingredients:

Paneer / Cottage Cheese - 500 gms
Onion - 1 large
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Chilly powder - 1/2 tsp
Garam masala powder - 1/4 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 tsp
Kasoori methi - 1/2 tsp
Tomato sauce / puree - 2 tblsp
Salt - for taste

 photo Paneersamosa_zpsbc1c09f8.jpg

Method:

Grate paneer and keep it aside. Chop onion finely. 

Take a tsp of oil in a pan and add the cumin seeds. Once it splutters, add the chopped onion and saute until golden brown in color. Now add the tomato paste and saute for few minutes. 

Now add the chilly powder, salt, garam masala, coriander powder and kasoori methi leaves and cook until it starts smelling good :)

Finally add the grated paneer and mix well. Do not cook for long after adding paneer else it would turn hard. 

Remove from flame and allow it to come to room temperature. 

You can either make the samosa dough by mixing in 1 cup of maida and a pinch of salt with just adequate water and allowing it to sit in a closed bowl for an hour, else you can buy the ready made samosa patty strips or spring roll strips and make your samosa. 

I so happened to spot one pack of samosa patty strip this time when I went for grocery shopping and I had to make it instantly since it was way too tempting and simple to use :)

The samosa patty strips are frozen products, hence remove from freezer and thaw it for a while. When it is at room temperature, keep a spoon of filling on the corner of the strip and start folding into triangles until you reach the other edge of the strip. Seal the strip with a paste made by mixing maida with few drops of water. 

Deep fry in hot oil until evenly browned on all sides and enjoy eating it with tomato ketchup :)

 photo Paneersamosa4_zpsdb62b175.jpg

Written by: Nithya
Send in your queries by clicking here

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Broccoli & Almond Soup

 photo Broccolialmondsoup3_zps657ba31a.jpg

Green vegetables are said to be the most healthiest ones and so is this Broccoli. I love them in my pastas or just as stir fries too. They are just so soft and delicate and cook so fast that I always enjoy using them in my dishes. 

I had this soup in a wedding reception recently and mind cooked the recipe and recreated it in my kitchen yesterday :) Oh God!! it was really delicious and all of them at home enjoyed it. Rich, creamy and healthy soup :)

 photo Broccolialmondsoup_zps12a6395b.jpg

Ingredients:

Broccoli - 1 flower
Almonds - 10
Butter - 1 tblsp
Onion - 1
Potato - 1
Garlic - 3 pods
Salt - for taste
Pepper - for taste
Cheese - for garnish

 photo Broccolialmondsoup2_zps01566411.jpg

Method:

Soak almonds in water for 2-3 hours. 

Wash broccoli and cut into large florets. 

Chop onions roughly. Peel and chop potato roughly. Dice garlic into small pieces. 

Take a pressure cooker and add a tblsp of butter. Once it melts add the chopped garlic and fry for a min. Follow it by chopped onions and fry for few minutes. Now add the potato and broccoli. Pour a cup of water and pressure cook the contents for 2-3 whistles. Open the cooker once the steam releases and allow it to come to room temperature. 

Meanwhile peel the soaked almond skin and grind it into a smooth paste by adding just a little water. 

Now grind the pressure cooked vegetables into a smooth paste. Transfer this content into a thick bottomed vessel and add adequate water to get the soup consistency. Also add the ground almond paste to it. 

Heat the soup for a boil or two. Add required amount of salt and pepper. Pour into the serving bowls and grate some cheese on top before serving. 

Enjoy the hot and creamy soup :)

 photo Broccolialmondsoup1_zps683bfd2d.jpg

Written by: Nithya
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