Thursday, November 30, 2006

Tomato Rice

It feels like forever since I posted an entry. Ive been crazily busy at work and my brother visited me for Thanksgiving, so was busy showing him around and cooking for him. I did take pictures of dishes that I made but did not have the time to post. I hope to post more regulary now.

This is one easy instant recipe that I make a lot when I am too tired to cook after a long day at work. You can either start it from scratch or use already made tomato thokku. I store 2 bottles of tomato thokku in the fridge and use it whenever necessary.

Ingredients:

Basmati rice (cooked with a little salt) - 2 cups
Green peas - 1/2 cup
Tomato thokku - 4 tbsp
Onion (finely chopped) - 1
Cashews (roasted) - about 10 pieces
Salt - as needed
Oil - 2 tbsp
Coriander leaves - for garnishing

Seasoning ingredients:
Mustard seeds
Split urad dal
Curry leaves

Method:

Heat oil is a big pan and add the seasoning ingredients. Once the mustard starts to splutter add chopped onions. Fry the onions till they turn translucent and then add the peas. Once the peas are half cooked add the tomato thokku and cashews. Simmer in medium heat for about 10 min and then add cooked rice and stir well. Lower the heat and cook till the rice mixes well with the thokku. Remove from heat, garnish with coriander leaves and serve with raitha and chips. This is an ideal dish to pack for picnics.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Shredded chicken fry

Last Friday was my dad's birthday and I decided to cook one of his favorites. It took me a long time to decide what to make and finally chose to make pichu pota kozhi fry (shredded chicken fry). My dad took us often to a restuarant called Ponnuswamy in chennai. Most of the times he would order this dish and so I thought why not try this dish out. I did not have a recipe for this but just went with my instincts and came up with this dish. It did come out well and I am sure I will be making it often in the future. So this one is exclusively for my dad.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD

Ingredients:

Chicken (cut into small pieces) - 200gms
Turmeric - a pinch
Onions (finely chopped) - 1
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Green chillies - 3
Cumin (Jeera) powder - 1 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 tsp
Pepper powder - 1 tsp
Salt - as needed
Oil - 4 tbsp

Method:

Boil 2 cups of water and add salt, turmeric and the chicken pieces and let cook for 15 min. Remove chicken from water, let it cool and then shred into small pieces by hand. Heat oil in a pan and add chopped onions and sliced green chillies. Fry till the onions turn golden brown and then add curry leaves, shredded chicken, coriander powder, cumin powder, pepper powder and salt. Fry in low heat till the chicken pieces are coated well with the masala and the dish becomes dry. Serve hot with rice and sambar. Infact it tastes good just by itself.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Chow chow (chayote squash) kootu

I never used to like eating kootu back in India. I always had to choose betweek kootu or chicken fry, mutton fry, fish fry, aloo masala, bindi masala. So naturally I opted for one of those and my mom would forcefully put a spoonfull of kootu in my plate and make me eat it. Now living here for about 6 years I crave for anything Indian. So I do make kootu atleast once a week with different vegetables. Cabbage, Spinach, Snake gourd and actually most vegetables can be used to made kootu. I used chow chow, also called bengaloor kathirikai (bangalore brinjal) in tamil. The first time I saw it in walmart, I was really surprised but then realised that its used in mexican cuisine too. Kootu can be served as a side dish (cooked a little dry) or as a main curry dish to go with rice. I prefer the dry variety.

Ingredients:

Chow chow - 2
Moong dal - 1/2 cup
Green chillies - 3
Tomato (chopped) - 1
Jeera (cumin seeds) - 1tsp
Coconut - 3 tsp
Turmeric - a pinch
Salt - as needed

For seasoning:
Oil - 1 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Split urad dal - 1 tsp
Red chilly - 1
Curry leaves - 1 sprig

Method:

Remove the inner white seed portion of the squash and chop it into small cubes. Pressure cook the chopped squash along with moong dal, turmeric, 2 slit green chillies, chopped tomato and enough water, for just one whistle. After pressure subsides remove the lid and let it cook in medium heat till most of the water evaporates. Meanwhile grind the coconut, jeera, 1 green chilly with little water to a paste. Add the ground paste along with salt to the squash dal mixture and heat till the dish becomes as dry as required. In a seperate pan heat oil and add the seasoning ingredients and once the mustard splutters, remove from heat and add the seasoning to the squash mixture. Serve with rice and dal or rice and sambhar or just with rice as a curry.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

A great new website - NewsGulp.com

I have a tough time keeping up with fellow bloggers and their recipes. There are so many Indian cuisine related blogs that its not fun anymore to go check out each of them for new recipes. Add to that the need to keep yourself updated with all sorts of news and current events, so that you dont feel like an ignorant idiot during those lunch discussions and arguments with co-workers.

NewsGulp.com is a new aggregation site focussing on the content that would interest the Indian community on the web. NewsGulp provides news from a varity of sources and also features blogs, videos and podcasts. In the blogs section, they have sections featuring popular tech,personal and food blogs. I was amazed to see recipes from my blog listed with other popular Indian cooking blogs. :-). The Food blogs section, though currently limited to recipes from only 12 blogs, is very useful. I am hoping that more food blogs would be added once they realise that a lot of users are interested in food related blogs.

So guys check out NewsGulp.com and let me know if you find it as useful as i do.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Gobi (cauliflower) manchurian

I have a friend who loves gobi manchurian. So I make this often with fried rice or vegetable noodles. I tend to make mine with a little gravy so that I goes well with the rice. If needed, it can be made dry and served as an appetizer or an evening snack.

Ingredients:


Cauliflower (cut into small florets) - 1 big
Chilli powder - 1 tsp
Ginger-garlic paste - 1 tsp
Corn flour - 4 tbsp
Maida (All purpose flour) - 2 tbsp
Rice flour - 2 tbsp
Soy sauce - 2 tsp
Ajinomoto - a pinch
Chilli sauce - 2 tsp
Tomato ketchup - 2 tsp
Spring onions (chopped) - 1 bunch
Onion (sliced) - 1/2
Capsicum (sliced) - 1
Garlic (chopped) - 2 cloves
Salt - as needed
Oil - for deep frying

Method:

Heat water till its boiling point and add cauliflower florets. Reduce heat and let it cook for 10min and then drain on a kitchen towel. Mix 3 tbsp corn flour, rice flour, maida, chilli powder, ginger-garli paste and salt with the cooked cauliflower florets. Just sprinkle enough water to coat the florets evenly. Heat oil and deep fry the coated florets till they turn golden brown. Finish the whole batch and then heat 2tbsp oil in another pan and add the chopped garlic. Add sliced onions and capsicum and fry till they look soft and cooked. Add chopped spring onions, soy sauce, chilli sauce, tomato ketchup (I use maggi's hot and sweet), ajinomoto and salt and stir for 2 min. Mix 1 tbsp of cornflour with 2 tbsp of water to make a thin paste and add it to the pan. Add a cup of water and cook till the gravy thickens. Finally add the fried cauliflower florets and serve hot with fried rice. Those who like it dry can reduce the amount of water added.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Era varuval (Shrimp fry - dry)

I used to love shrimps back in India but the ones that I get here dont have the same flavor. But still once in a while I cook shrimp with a lot of Indian masala to compensate for the lack of flavor. Shrimp also cooks fast hence this recipe is a definite time saver.

Ingredients:

Shrimp (de-veined and tail off) - 1 cup
Chilli powder - 3 tsp
Turmeric - 1 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 tsp
Lemon juice or vinegar - 2 tsp
Ginger-garlic paste - 1 tsp
Jeera (cumin seeds) - 1 tsp
Saunf (fennel seeds) - 1 tsp
Onion (chopped) - 1
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Oil - 3 tbsp
Salt - as needed

Method:

Wash shrimp and marinate for an hr with chilli powder, coriander powder, turmeric, ginger-garlic paste and lime juice or vinegar. Heat oil in a pan and add mustard, jeera and saunf. Once the jeera starts turning color add chopped onions and fry till they turn golden brown. Add curry leaves, the marinated shrimp and salt and fry in medium heat till the dish turns a little dry (about 15min). Remove from heat and garnish with coriander leaves and serve with rice and sambar. For those who like spicy food, either chilli powder can be increased or dry red chillies can be added along with the onions.