Count down to Due date of my Second Blessing

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Puliangudi Special - Ulundhamparuppu Curry - Udad Dal Curry

I wanted to make my 50th post something special, everybody does it with sweets, but I wanted to do  something different. I decided upon this Ulundham paruppu curry as it is special to me.

This is one of the recipes that is unique to my native place, it is made in Puliangidi, Kadayanallur, Vallam Sengottai areas. I think Udad dal dishes are prevalent in this area because udad is the crop used in rotation between the rice crops.

During season, green udad bean pods are available (directly from the fields). These are boiled whole in salted water and then peeled and the green beans inside are eaten. Let me tell you they are really delicious and it is something I looked forward to when I visited during my summer holidays.

Girls who have attained age and pregnant and post partem women are given ulundh kali, ulundham paruppu curry, Ulundhu vadai, ulundhu choru in fact in Unlundhu/Udad Dal in as many forms as possible because it is said to srengthen the pelvic muscles and the back bone. The kali has a bitter taste due to the addition of aliyam vidhai. I remember being force fed the kali when I attained age. But I am grateful now, because I am relatively free of the backpain that seems to be so prevalent among women of my age in my acquaintance. I will post the recipes for the other items in future, if the almighty wills.

aromatic and creamy ulundham paruppu curry

Now for my favourite Ulundham paruppu curry.
First Step:
Udad Dhal - 1/2  cup
Jeera - 1/2 tsp
Garlic Cloves 2-3
Cook all the above together with water to cover till the dal is cooked but seperate.
Second step:
1/2 cup grated coconut
1/2 tsp Sombu / perunjeeragam/ sonf
1 " piece Cinnamon
1/2 tsp jeera
1 " piece Ginger
2-3 Garlic Cloves
Grind all the above to a fine paste.
Third Step:
1 Big Onion Chopped or a handful of Sambhar onions (preferable)
One tomato - fimely Chopped
two green chillies Slit
1 tsp Chilli Powder (Omit for post partem ladies and can use a bit of black pepper powder instead)
4 tsp Malli Masala Powder
salt to taste
1 tsp Mustard seeds
two sprigs curry leaves.

Heat oil in a kadai. Add mustard, after it splutters, add curry leaves and chopped onion. When onions change colour, add tomato peices, green chillies, salt, chilli powder, malli masala, and stir till raw smell of chilli powder goes. Add the ground coconut paste. Add water to make thick gravy and simmer till the masala is cooked. Last add the cooked udad dal with its water. Adjust for salt and serve with plain boiled rice and tomato chutney or any spicy curry. We had it with Pavakkai waruval & cauliflower jeera stir fry (recipes following soon).

When the masala is boiling you can add Drumsticks or Raw mango to it and boil till cooked to get a really different and delicious flavour.
For a non veg variation, after the dal is added, eggs are broken into the gently simmering gravy and cooked. This is also good, but my husband dosen't like it, so I take a little in another pan and do it seperately.
Instead of the cinnamon and sonf in the coconut masala, you can add a tsp of garam masala powder, but I prefer not to do so.
Remember not to overcook the paruppu/dal, if the dal disingerates, the curry will take on a slippery texture which is not palatable to some people.

I am sending this to Foodelicious - Only South Indian Event, Vegan Diet - Only Plant Based, Any One can Cook series 45, Healthy Morsels, Vidhya's and Vardhini's  - Love Locked - Legumes.

Koththu Parotta - Plain Version

Sometimes when we make or buy Parottas, there are leftovers. This can be turned into delicious Koththu parotta the next day. This is very simple & quick item.

Left over parottas - Chop into small pieces directly from the fridge. Its easier that way.
Onions - sliced - For three salad plate sized parottas, use one big Onion
Tomatoes - 2 - 3 finely chopped
Chillies - 2 slit
Salt to taste
Ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
Chilli Powder - 1/2 tsp or more if you want more heat.
Lemon Juice - 1 tsp Optional
Corrainder leaves - chopped - a little
Oil as required

Heat oil in a pan, add onions, fry till golden, add ginger garlic paste, green chillies and sautee till raw smell of masala goes, add the spice powders and tomatoes , add salt, stir till tomatoes are mushy, add a tbsp of water if the gravy is too dry, fold in the chopped parotta pieces and the corriander. Squeeze half a lime if necessary. Serve with chips or raita. Simple , fast, delicious.

Potato Biriyani

This is one of the recipes that bring back memories of myself fighting with my sisters to scrape the pan clean. Even my finicky younger sister would polish it off. The name is Biriyani, but my mother used normal rice (parboiled rice) for making it. When Rasi at Vegetarian Food & me asked for a dish which we make especially for ourselves, I was a little taken aback. I realised that though I like what I cook, most of my cooking is geared towards my DH & DD's preferences. I couldn't think of a single thing which was special for me alone!!! While I was pondering over this and whether I have lost myself and other great thathvams (philosophies), along came Aruna manikandans Baby Potato Biriyani. Now I remembered my Mothers Potato Biriyani, which graced our lunch box very often as it was a family favourite and is something which can qualify for what I make specially for myself.

Here come my mom's Potato Biriyani, especially for me:

1 1/2 cups Rice (Any Indian Non glutinous Rice - Just adjust water accordingly)
1 1/2 cups - Cubed potatoes (around 1 " Cubes)
1 Onion - Sliced
2 tomatoes - chopped
1 green chilli - slit
1 tbsp - ginger garlic paste
1 tsp or less - chilli powder
1 tbsp - malli masala powder
salt to taste.
Oil/ Ghee or a mixture - as required.
Powder together the following:
3 cardomoms
1 " piece cinnamon
4 cloves
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp jeera
1/2 tsp sonf
1/2 tsp Black pepper.

Wash and clean rice. Soak it till you process the other ingredients for this dish.
Heat oil in a pressure cooker or in a heavy bottomed pan. Add sliced onions, sautee till translucent. Add green chilli & ginger garlic paste. Add chilli powder, malli masala powder and the powdered masala and salt. fry till aromatic on low flame. add chopped tomatoes and sautee till mushy.
Now add the cubed potatoes, drained rice and enough water to cook rice (for parboiled rice the amount is three times the volume of rice, for raw rice 2 times and for jeerakasala rice 1.5 times). Check for salt at this stage. Close the lid and cook till done. Garnish with chopped corriander leaves.
Serve with a salad or pappad or potato chips.

I am sending this to Vegetarian Food & Me - I am the star ,  Any One Can Cook Series 45 and to Comfort Food

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Strawberry Dates Milk Shake

Freshness in a Glass


10 sttrawberries
10 pitted(seedless) dates - chopped
2 Ripe bananas
1 - 2 cups Whole Milk
date syrup - as per taste.
Strawberry Ice cream - 1 scoop

Blend everything smoothly, serve chilled. easy peasy and so wholesome. I felt instantaneously energised and my daughter loved the strawberry flavour.

I am sending this to Kalyani's Kitchen Chronicles - Summer Splash guest hosted at Sangeethas Kitchen

If I have given the wrong link please feel free to correct me, I am confused about this hosting business. Still am a baby blogger. :)

Update: 27-03-2012:

I am also sending this to Tase of Pearl City's Any One Can Cook: Series 45 and Healthy Morsels
For those ladies during their first trimester with the morning sickness may not be able to drink milk can try this with Yoghurt, it will be more soothing. One thing I did to combat this is to have a glass of water which I drank as soon as I woke up , I also kept sliced cucumber with lemon juice and salt in the fridge, peeled orange segments in covered bowls so that I had something to change my mind when I thought I was feeling nauseous. It worked very well.

Update : 14-07-2012

I am sending this refreshing drink to Ramadan Friendly Recipes @ The Halal Foodie

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Kathirikkai Poriyal (Brinjal Stir Fry)

Even though it is not a popular vegetable it is amazing how many delicious dishes can be made with this bland spongy vegetable. It is an indispensable vegetable, economic and available through out the year. In my native place, we mostly use the light green striped variety or the white one. It is versatile and takes on the flavour of whatever spices or masala added to it. One of my favourites is this simple poriyal.
I got this recipe from my relative in sharjah, by relation she is my grandmother ( My own grandmothers cousin sister).

Brinjal - Cubed 2 cups ( Since my hubby bought Long narrow variety I just sliced into 1/2 inch thick roundels so that they will hold their shape when cooked)
Onion - 1 Nos chopped
Curry leaves 1 sprig
Turmeric Powder - 1/2 tsp.
Jeera - 1 tsp
Red chillies - 4 nos
Garlic - 1-2 cloves
Coconut - 2 tbsp grated
salt to taste
Oil - 2-3 tbsp.
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Udad dal - 1 tsp

Cur brinjal, put in salted water to draw out the bitterness if the brinjal is not tender. If the seeds are prominent, then the brinjal is well ripened and may be bitter to taste in whatever dish it is used. Best not to use such in poriyals. You can use them for kaarakuzhambu, not even sambhar.
Grind Jeera, red chillies, coconut and garlic into a coarse dry mixture. Don't add water.
Heat oil in a pan, add mustard and udad dal, after mustard splutters add Chopped onions, and when it turns colour add turmeric powder, salt and the ground mixture. stir fry the masala, you will get a wonderful aroma at this stage with the frying of the coconut, garlic & jeera. If you dont add salt and by chance the masala burns, the red chillies will smoke and choke you. Believe me I have experienced this. Next add the drained cubed or sliced brinjals and stir well to coat well with the masala. Cover and cook for around five mins. It should not cook too much or you will end up with a paste, tasty but nonetheless a paste.
Stir well on medium flame to lightly roast the cooked brinjal pieces and remmove from flame. Your Kaththirikkai poriyal is ready.

I am sending this to Foodelicious 'Only' South Indian event, Vidhyas and Srav's Vegan Diet - Only Plant based Food and to Taste of Pearl City's Anyone can Cook : Series 45

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Spinach & Chana Curry

This is a curry I started making when I wanted something low carb as usually I paired it with Parotta made from maida, or Khubz same maida but baked so I console myself healthier. There's something fascinating about the huge round oven in which the baker puts the flat disc of dough inside and it puffs beautifully into Khubz. We have been having Khubz regularly for years because my Hubby like arabic food.
I try to compensate by overloading the fiber factor in the accompaniments, it has worked so far because even though we regularly take parotta or khubz, we are free from constipation, cholesterol etc...

Weelllll coming to the recipe, this is a very healthy recipe full of the goodness of Spinach and Chana.


1 1/2 cups Cooked Chana (or one can)
2 cups - chopped spinach
1 cup  - Chopped Onion
1 cup - Chopped tomato
1/4 cup - Chopped corriander leaves
2 Nos - Chopped green chillies
1 Tbsp - Ginger garlic paste
1 Tbsp - Corriander powder
1 tsp - Chilli Powder
1/2 tsp - garam masal powder
1 tsp - Pepper - jeera powder
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt to taste
Oil as required.

Heat oil in a kadai, sautee onions till golden.
Add ginger garlic paste and the chopped green chillies and sautee till it turns colour.
Add chopped tomatoes and a little salt and cook till tomatoes are mushy.
Add all the spice powders excepting pepper jeera powder and stir till masala is aromatic.
Add Chopped spinach and stir a little, add a little water and allow the spinach to cook till semisoft.
Mash the cooked spinach with the back of the spoon.
Stir in the cooked chana and corriander leaves and let it simmer for five mins or so to blend the flavours.
The consistency should be semi solid, add water as required and check for salt level.
After switching off the stove, stir in the pepper jeera powder and the lemon juice.

This amount was just right for the three of us, but it will serve four persons witha little more water added to the gravy.

When I had a larger fridge, I used to soak and sprout 1 kg chana at a time, pressure cook with salt to taste and divide into four or five parts and freeze. The chopped spinach usually was kept aside when I made poriyal the previous day or the day before. So all that remained was chopping the onion, tomatoes and green chilles. This you can do while the pan is heating on the stove so it was a quickie recipe for me. It takes maybe fifteen to twenty mins if all the ingredients are in hand.

Ladies pressed for time and energy can use canned garbanzo beans, frozen spinach. There is no problem in using what resources you have available to make a home cooked meal for your loved ones.

We have this with chappaties, poories or when tired with parottas from the nearby cafeteria or Khubz from the bakery.

I am sending this to Chel Al Dente's Gimme Green, Taste of Pearl City's Healthy Morsels, Vidhyas and Vardhinis Love Locked - Legumes, Srav's Vegan Diet - Only Plant Based, Show me Your HITs Series 2 Fiber Rich Foods

Iam also sending this to Taste of Pearl City's : Any One can Cook Series - 45

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Seven Cup Sweet

Or should I say 3 1/2 cup sweet ?

Of the three of us, me my DD & my DH, only my DH has a sweet tooth. So I make sweets rarely. My sweet making takes place during Ramdaan time, and when guests come. This is a simple sweet, nutritious sweet, easy to make and good for children. Bigger people can limit themselves to one piece if they can ;-).

The actual recipe is as follows, I halved the recipe.

1 cup - kadala maavu (Besan aka Chick pea Flour)
1 cup - Cocnut finely grated (avoid the brown part near the shell)
1 cup - Milk
1 cup - Ghee (Clarified Butter)
3 cups - Granulated Sugar

Take a heavy bottom pan, heat it, reduce the flame, add ghee, add besan, grated coconut, fry a little, then add other ingredients.
Stir continously for fifteen mins or so on medium flame. The whole mixture will give a toasted aroma and change colour slightly and come off the sides.
You can add 1/2 tsp of cardomom powder for flavouring, but it is optional.
Pour into greased plate and cut into squares or diamonds when half set. Break apart when fully set. I got around 15 pieces which will last around three days in my house :-)

Dont they look glossy ?

Toy from a small baby coconut

We used to make this from the small underdeveloped coconut which fell down and from the ribs of the coconut frond. I think the pictures will be sufficient. I wanted to record this somewhere - an example of the simple pleasures which made up my childhood.

From This

To This

If we hold the two sticks woven between the looped stick and the straight sticks and flick our wrist to rotate the baby coconut, it will produce a whirring tic tic sound.

This vacation when I went to TVM, I showed my daughter how to make it, she was enchanted that I used to make my own toys in my childhood. It was more fun or atleast it seemed like that to me.

I remember making whistles from leaves of a tree, I forget its name it had wonderful yellow flower with a deep reddish maroon center.

Anti caking agents

Usually I am ambivalent about chemical additives thinking that if so many people are having them without any side effects, I dont have to break my head about it. Afterall its not everyday that we have chips etc...
Anyways today I was fed up and asked my hubby to buy a big packet of name brand potato chips. I casually going through the list of ingredients Ok no big words only one - anticaking agent E535. Well I went to Google and this was the result:

An anticaking agent is an additive placed in powdered or granulated materials, such as table salt, to prevent the formation of lumps and for easing packaging, transport, and consumption.

I quote
"Sodium ferrocyanide is the sodium salt of the coordination compound of formula [Fe(CN)6]4-. It is a yellow crystalline solid that is soluble in water and insoluble in alcohol. Despite the presence of the cyanide ligands, sodium ferrocyanide is not especially toxic (acceptable daily intake 0–0.025 mg/(kg body weight)[2]) because the cyanides are tightly bound to the metal. However, like all ferrocyanide salt solutions, addition of an acid (a hydrogen donor) can result in the production of cyanide gas (HCN), which is toxic. In its hydrous form, Na4Fe(CN)6·10H2O (sodium ferrocyanide decahydrate), it is sometimes known as yellow prussiate of soda. The yellow color is the color of ferrocyanide anion.

[edit] Uses

Sodium ferrocyanide is a chemical additive known as E 535. It is added to road and food grade salt as an anticaking agent.[2] When combined with iron, it converts to a deep blue pigment called Prussian blue.[3] In photography, it is used for bleaching, toning, and fixing. It is used as a stabilizer for the coating on welding rods. In the petroleum industry, it is used for removal of mercaptans.

[edit] Production

Sodium ferrocyanide is produced industrially from hydrogen cyanide, ferrous chloride, and calcium hydroxide, the combination of which affords Ca2[Fe(CN)6].11H2O. A solution of this salt is then treated with sodium salts to precipitate the mixed calcium-sodium salt CaNa2[Fe(CN)6], which in turn is treated with sodium carbonate to give the tetrasodium salt.[4]""

End of quote.

The ingredients list told Anticaking agent E535, if it was mentioned anti caking agent sodium ferrocyanate I would have thought twice or maybe even five times before succumbing to dd's pressure and buying it.
Sure it tastes good. Real good. Less oil than if Imade potato chips at home myself.
In my mind cyanide is something used for secret agents and terrorists of the enemy country to commit suicide. Or some filmi villianess using it to kill the hero or related person. It is not a real happens to others not to me!
Is it some conspiracy? giving chemical additives inocous harmless sounding names and lulling the general public. It is supposed to be harmless in at small doses. But I am still leery. I have to search for more information on the net.

Not only chips, anti caking agents are added to Salt, dry milk powder, Egg mixes, Flours, goodness is there anything left?

It is said accceptable daily intake 0.025mg/kg body weight per day. Now there's no indication of the amount of caking agent in that packet. So my DD is 42 kg so her acceptable daily inkae is 42 x 0.025 = 1.05 mg. I know many kids who can polish off 5 or 6 packets at a time in one go. Thank God My daughter is not interested in packet chips most of the time, we buy only when travelling and at petrol stations.

What action can I take? Well I have written this post for one, second Iwill tell all my friends, third stricly keep consumption to one packet at the most, Fourth read the lable and google the ingredients.

I think instead of chips I will have to depend upon wadawams and pappads.....Hmmm. Some more experimental cooking coming up.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Chicken Cutlet and Womans Day

Today I made Chicken cutlet for the first time in my life..... I know, I know, most of my blogging friends seem to be such versatile cooks, me I am well versed in vegetarian snacks like bajji etc.. but in non veg I have only a few family favorites in my mind.

Blogging has given me the encouragement to try out new recipes by myself instead of inviting myself to friends houses :-) . I must say it came out very well, my DD & my hubby loved it. I thought making cutlet is a very time consuming process and involving a lot of vessels getting dirty... easy to give two dh and eat at the cafeterias. Well my friends you see me eating the Humble pie (or could I say Chicken Cutlet)... Yes there is pile of dishes in my sink but not so much as I thought. Only a pressure cooker for the potatoes, a pan for the chicken, a smaller saucepan for the onions, one plate for the bread crumbs, one bowl for the beaten egg. one plate for the crumbed cutlets, one plate for the fried ones....well you catch the drift. I think I will try out more items if I have somebody to clean the kitchen or atleast wash the vessels for me. Dear Dear India where I can get a housemaid to do such things without the jhanjat of visa etc...Once again I say pesaama Urmila maadhiri irundhirukkalaam...

Note to myself: use disposable dishes for the bread crumbs and beaten egg. OK so who wants to know how I accomplished this? I know my sister will read this and say yes she wants to know. so here goes... next time I will take step by step pictures for my discerning audience and upload it. For now there is only the photo of the end result.
Yummy Crisp on the outside soft on the inside Cutlets.mmm....


Cubed Boneless Chicken Breast - 1 cup (I had kept aside the breasts of a 1 Kg Chicken aside)
Potatoes - 3 nos Fist sized
Onion - 1 small chopped finely
Green Chillies - 2 Nos Chopped finely
Turmeric Powder - 1/2 tsp
Ginger Garlic paste - 1 tsp or more if you like it
Garam Masala - 1/2 tsp
Chilli Powder - 1/2 tsp
Pepper Jeera Powder 1/2 tsp
1 tsp salt
Juice of one lemon.
Chopped Corriander Leaves - 2-3 tbsp.
Oil as reqd.
Egg 1 Nos beated lightly.
Large Bread slices 4 nos - process to crumbs.


Cook potatoes till soft. drain well. Mash to paste. Meanwhile cook chicken pieces with turmeric, salt, ginger garlic paste and water to cover. Let the water evaporate. When cool enough to handle, crumble with your fingers. You can use a fork, but I found this easier and more uniform.

Sautee the chopped onions and green chillies in a tsp of oil till onion is soft. Add to chicken. Add all the other spices. Add the mashed potato, corriander leaves and mix till well combined. Check for salt and spice level. Add 1/2 cup of bread crumbs if the mixture seems too wet for you to make into balls.

While it is warm itself, shape into flat circles or ovals as per your wish. Dip in beaten eggs then coat with bread crumbs pressing lightly to cover well with the crumbs.

Heat oil in a kadai. Deep fry two or three at a time to a golden brown color.

I was able to make 15 nos of cutlets around three & four inches round and 3/4 inch thick. I think it is a very good value for money. Two are sufficient for a person. My daughter had four :-) she liked it so much.

The Bread Crumbs were just enough for coating the cutlets. There were about 2 tsps of beaten egg left over. I mixed the bread crumbs which fell away from the cutlets , made into a ball and fried it. My daughter told it was tasty. So no Waste at all. Are'nt I Clever!!!

I have frozen the rest after crumbing them.

As my daughter said, this was a perfect way to commemorate Womans Day.

I am sending this to Any one can cook series 43 by Umm Mymoonah and Let,s part every month - snacks by Surabhi Nayak

I am also sending this to Ramadaan Friendly recipes event

Monday, March 5, 2012

Paruppu Rasam

My rasams excepting the traditional rasam paruppu combo from my native place were dismal. Infact my Dh who almost never complains about my cooking used to grimace when I told that rasam was on the menu. they were like kashayams on the first day and like poison on the next.

But now I got a good rasam recipe from Aval Vikatan. My daughter loved it as it comes close to the rasam from a one and only veggie restaurant in fujairah. It deosen't require store bought rasam powder. A small step to make the rasam powder but worth the taste and flavour.

Fragrant Paruppu Rasam

1/4 cup - Thuvar Dal (Thuvaram paruppu)
1 Nos - Tomato
1 tsp - Salt
1 small ball (2cm dia) - Tamarind
1/4 tsp - Turmeric Powder
2 - 3 Cloves - Garlic
For Rasam Powder:
1 tsp - Thuvar Dal
3 tsp - Dhania (Corriander seeds)
1 tsp - Whole Black Pepper
1/2 tsp - Whole Jeera
3 nos - Red Chillies
For Tempering (Thalippu)
1/4 tsp - Ghee
1 tsp - Oil
1/2 tsp - mustard seeds
Curry Leaves, Corriander Leaves - Little of each.

Coarsely powder the items required for rasam powder.
Ingredients for rasam powder

Coarsely powdered spices

Cook Thuvar dal with turmeric till soft. Soak and extract 1 1/2 cup tamarind juice. Crush tomato to pulp.

Boil tamarind extract, crushed tomato with salt. add lightly crushed garlic cloves sauteed in a little oil.

After it boils for a few mins add Rasam powder, then add cooked thuvar dal with water as required. Switch off flame when in comes to boil for one more time.

Temper with mustard seeds, curry leaves and corriander leaves in a mixture of ghee and oil. Serve with Rice.

The freshly ground masala takes this rasam to a new level. I loved the fragrance in the kitchen when I made this rasam.  The ultimate test was that this rasam tasted great even reheated the next day.

Anything that tasted good after it acquired the status of a leftover is a keeper for me.

To save time and energy, I normally take out around half a cup of cooked dal when I cook dal for sambhar and keep refrigerated for making rasam a few days later.

I am sending this to Foodelicious Only Event - Only South Indian


Ginger Garlic Paste

I was in a dilemma whether I should post this or not. I mean ginger garlic paste is ginger garlic paste. What instructions are needed for that? But then I think of all the doubts I get when I think of some new cuisine maybe somebody or the other will find this post useful.

This is one of the essentials in my fridge. I usually prepare enough to last atleast two weeks. I remember when I was working, I used to recruit my cousins to peel ginger and garlic when they came for a weekend stay in my house and make enough to last three months atleast. I used to keep one batch in the fridger and the rest in the freezer.

There are two types of ginger and garlic that I know of. Both are available in India. One variety , the ginger is stringy and the rhizhomes are small, the thickness rarely more than finger size. The garlic also are small cloves, the other variety which is more readily available in the middle east, both are large. The ginge can be as thick as a small potato, it is more juicy.The garlic has nice big fat cloves, it has been referred to as malai poondu in some tamil TV programme I watched long back. The smaller variety has a more intense garlicky smell. So if you use the smaller variety of garlic, the ratio proportion is Ginger to Garlic 2:1. Since I use both of the larger varieties, I use equal quantities of ginger and garlic by volume, measuring after it has been chopped to small pieces.

Take care to cut the ginger against the grain, it will be easier to grind in the mixie, you will not end up with long fibres winding around the blade centre.

Ginger Garlic Chopped

When grinding use the dry grinder blade the one with the blades almost flat it the base of the blender. There will be no need to add additional water. Be a little patient and scrape the sides with a spoon. The water in the ginger will be sufficient to grind to a fine paste. Store in a airtight bottle in the fridge.

Dont be alarmed if the paste turns a light green in colour. I found that there was nothing wrong with the taste and no after effects as of date in my house. It did not always turn green for me maybe once in ten times. I was puzzled and for the first few times I threw away the paste, a great sacrifice on my part because I was working at a demanding job, my dd was toddler and I had to sacrifice my precious time to peel that damned garlic and ginger. Then I was presented with fait accompli and had to use the green coloured paste. Nothing happened and no percievable taste difference. So after that I stopped throwing it out and used it up. I came to the conclusion that it had something to do with the ginger and nothing to do with my hygenic practices.

Here endeth my discourse on ginger garlic paste.

I cant believe I had so much to say about ginger garlic paste, and I did not even mention anything about the medicinal benefits..... Well that will come another time.

Thursday, March 1, 2012


One of the traditional foods is pazhaya choru or saadham. In english it will translate to old rice. It is nothing but rice cooked on the first day afternoon, covered with water and consumed the next day. The rice becomes spongy and a light fermented smell is there. As with most traditional foods, some nutritionist has found that this form of rice is very good for the health. Hmm remember ragi, cholam (millet), they were considered poor peoples food and were looked down upon, even now I hear disdain in my friends voices when i say I made godhumai dosai for dinner, now they are health foods... I think this will also make the list of health foods when some fancy health guru takes up this as a cause till then enjoy this simple cooling drink in the summers.

For neerahaaram you need:

two handfuls of soaked cooked rice
Fresh water 1 - 2 cups
Salt to taste
Buttermilk 1/2 cup
Small onions - 4-5 nos

mash the rice with your hands add fresh water, a quarter cup or so of buttermilk and salt to taste. Chop onion finely and add to this mixture. Serve. It is served at room temperature. I can actually feel my stomach cooling when I drink this.

I am sending this to Beat the  Heat event.

I am sending this to Foodelicious - Only South Indian Event
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