Semiya Idly

I'm the only one to say a big NO to Idly in our family.Breakfast may be anything like Dosa,Poori,Upma,Pongal but Idly has to be on side,each time when I sit to have Breakfast with my dad we both will have a small discussion on it but finally I'll not have Idly.I feel that its a sick persons food,but I know that its the best food and healthy too,don't know why I had developed such a feeling for it.
This is all about ordinary Idly,when it comes to Ravva Idly,Semiya Idly,Guntur Idly I love them.It has been years I had this Semiya Idly,my mom lost her recipe book and got it back few days ago,she told me this Proportions and made them yesterday for the 1st time.They turned out perfect.Smooth and soft.Here is the recipe..


Ingredients:

Semiya:2 cups
Sooji:1 cupCurd:2 cups(Beaten)
Water:1 cup(add according to the consistency)
Salt:To Taste

Tempering:


Oil:2 spns
Cumin Seeds:1 spn
Urad Dal:1 spn
Mustard Seeds:1/2 spn
Chenna Dal:1 spnCurry Leaves:8-10
Green Chillies:5(cut into thin pieces)
Red Chillies:3(cut into rounds)

Procedure:
1.Dry roast Semiya and sooji separately till they turn light golden color and gives out nice aroma and put them together in a bowl.
2.Heat oil in a pan and add the ingredients listed under tempering and fry them till they turn golden color.
3.Now add the tempering to the dry roasted Sooji and Semiya,add the beaten curd to this mixture,mix well and add 1/2 cup of water if necessary.Add Salt to taste and let this mixture rest for 6 hrs for the semiya and sooji to soak well in the liquid and become soft.After 2 hrs check if the mixture needs any mositure,if so add little more water,mix well and allow it to rest.
4.After 6 hrs u can make Idly anytime u want.Make sure that the batter should be same as the Idly batter consistency.Add water to bring it to that consisctency.
5.Grease the Idly plates and fill them with the batter and cook them on steam for12-15 mins on medium flame.
6.Semiya Idly will be ready after 15 mins and serve it hot with Coconut Chutney.

Gongura Pacchadi

After long time I could find fresh Sour Green Leaves in our Local grocery store,picked and made Gongura Pacchadi,my all time F avourite.Making this is very simple.

Ingredients:

Goungura Leaves(Sour Greens):3 cups
Tamarind:Small Gooseberry Size(soak in water,just to make it soft which helps while blending)
Salt:To Taste
Red Chillies:To Taste
Oil:2 spns
Onion:1 small(very finely Chopped)
Garlic:3 cloves(Finely Chopped/Crushed)

Procedure:


1.Heat a pan on flame,add oil when hot add the gongura leaves,red chillies and fry till the gongura leaves are not sticky(Usually the gongura leaves are sticky when we fry them).
2.Now add salt,tamarind ,fry for 2 mins ,turn off the flame and then let the mixture cool down,once done add it to a blender and make a smooth paste.Add water if needed.
3.Finally add onion and garlic that are sauted in oil.
4.Serve it with hot white rice and it tastes heavenly.

Watermelon Carving

Last weekend I tried my hand on watermelon carving,we had a BBQ party with friends on Friday evening,I made a melon dessert and served it in a basket made with watermelon,saw in recipe in food network that is prepared by Giada De Laurentiis I love her recipes and the way how she makes the dishes easy.She used some rum which gives a nutty flavor to the dish,I didn't have it so I used Vanilla extract instead and it turned out well.

Ingredients:
Watermelon:1 medium SizeHoney Dew Melon:1 medium SizeSugar Syrup(1/2 cup of sugar dissolved in 1/4 cup of water and bring the mixture to a boil)
Lemon Juice:Extracted from 1 medium sized Lemon
Mint:1 spn(finely chopped)Vanilla Extract:1/2 spn

Procedure:
1.Using a melon scooper carefully scoop the balls from water melon and honey dew melon.
2.Take these melon balls into a bowl,add sugar syrup,vanilla extract,lemon juice and mint toss them well so that they are well coated with all the ingredients and then serve them in the watermelon shell.The extra flavor of vanilla,lemon juice and mint adds extra flavor to the melon.I'm sure you will like the taste also.I also made a baby stroller with watermelon and used different fruits to fill the stroller.I saw the video from Youtube and tried to make the same ans was successful.I made this for a baby shower party of my friend who are going to have a baby boy,along with this watermelon stroller I made a 3 tier diaper cake and decorated it with small baby stuff which the parents can use once the baby is arrived.
Cute little Gifts for Baby Shower.Good Luck to the parents :)

Chocolate Pavlova-Daring Bakers Challenge-June '10

Chocolate Pavlova,The Daring Bakers Challenge for Month Of June.I loved doing this challenge,a delicious and delicate dessert topped with Whipping cream,fresh fruits and crushed Almonds. This Australian Dessert became our favorite.

I made few pavlovas for single serving and used to remaining to make a big pavlova which look like a cake,they were simply delicious.

Here is the recipe from daring bakers


Recipe 1: Chocolate Meringue (for the chocolate Pavlova):

3 large egg whites
½ cup plus 1 tbsp (110 grams) white granulated sugar
¼ cup (30 grams) confectioner’s (icing) sugar
1/3 cup (30 grams) cocoa powder

Directions:

  1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 200º F (95º C) degrees. Line two baking sheets with silpat or parchment and set aside.
  2. Put the egg whites in a bowl and whip until soft peaks form. Increase speed to high and gradually add granulated sugar about 1 tbsp at a time until stiff peaks form. (The whites should be firm but moist.)
  3. Sift the confectioner’s sugar and cocoa powder over the egg whites and fold the dry ingredients into the white. (This looks like it will not happen. Fold gently and it will eventually come together.)
  4. Fill a pastry bag with the meringue. Pipe the meringue into whatever shapes you desire. Alternatively, you could just free form your shapes and level them a bit with the back of a spoon. (Class made rounds, hearts, diamonds and an attempt at a clover was made!)
  5. Bake for 2-3 hours until the meringues become dry and crisp. Cool and store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Recipe 2: Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse (for the top of the Pavlova base):

1 ½ cups (355 mls) heavy cream (cream with a milk fat content of between 36 and 40 percent)
grated zest of 1 average sized lemon
9 ounces (255 grams) 72% chocolate, chopped
1 2/3 cups (390 mls) mascarpone
pinch of nutmeg
2 tbsp (30 mls) Grand Marnier (or orange juice)

Directions:

  1. Put ½ cup (120 mls) of the heavy cream and the lemon zest in a saucepan over medium high heat. Once warm, add the chocolate and whisk until melted and smooth. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and let sit at room temperature until cool.
  2. Place the mascarpone, the remaining cup of cream and nutmeg in a bowl. Whip on low for a minute until the mascarpone is loose. Add the Grand Marnier and whip on medium speed until it holds soft peaks. (DO NOT OVERBEAT AS THE MASCARPONE WILL BREAK.)
  3. Mix about ¼ of the mascarpone mixture into the chocolate to lighten. Fold in the remaining mascarpone until well incorporated. Fill a pastry bag with the mousse. Again, you could just free form mousse on top of the pavlova.

Recipe 3: Mascarpone Cream (for drizzling):

1 recipe crème anglaise
½ cup (120 mls) mascarpone
2 tbsp (30 mls) Sambucca (optional)
½ cup (120 mls) heavy cream

Directions:

Prepare the crème anglaise. Slowly whisk in the mascarpone and the Sambucca and let the mixture cool. Put the cream in a bowl and beat with electric mixer until very soft peaks are formed. Fold the cream into the mascarpone mixture.

Recipe 4: Crème Anglaise (a component of the Mascarpone Cream above):

1 cup (235 mls) whole milk
1 cup (235 mls) heavy cream
1 vanilla bean, split or 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
6 large egg yolks
6 tbsp (75 grams) sugar

Directions:

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until the mixture turns pale yellow.
  2. Combine the milk, cream and vanilla in a saucepan over medium high heat, bringing the mixture to a boil. Take off the heat.
  3. Pour about ½ cup of the hot liquid into the yolk mixture, whisking constantly to keep from making scrambled eggs. Pour the yolk mixture into the pan with the remaining cream mixture and put the heat back on medium. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens enough to lightly coat the back of a wooden spoon. DO NOT OVERCOOK.
  4. Remove the mixture from the heat and strain it through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl. Cover and refrigerate until the mixture is thoroughly chilled, about 2 hours or overnight.

Assembly:
Pipe the mousse onto the pavlovas and drizzle with the mascarpone cream over the top. Dust with confectioner’s sugar and fresh fruit if desired.

Bread Upma

Each time my hubby gets me a bread packet and wanted me to have it for my breakfast but never till now in the past 2 years I opened it,the bread packet simply lays on the fridge and goes into trash can after it gets expired.This time I decided not to waste it as I myself got this for my dad who visited us last week,so made Bread Upma which is a bookmarked recipe for long time.I got this recipe online,saw video of Sanjeev Kapoor and tried it by adding few ingredients to my taste.Thanks to the great Chef.


Ingredients:

Bread Slice:10 no(Toasted and cut each slice into 9 squares)
Onion:1 medium(finely chopped)
Capsicum:1 medium(finely chopped)
Carrot:1(peeled and grated)
Green Peas:1/2 cup(I used Frozen)
Tomato:1 big(chopped)
Ginger:1/2 spn(grated)
Green Chillies:To Taste
Tomato Ketchup:4-5 spns
Coriander Powder:1 spn
Mustard:1/2 spn
Urad Dal:1/2 spn
Cumin Seeds:1/2 spn
Chenna Dal:1/2 spn
Oil:2 spns

Procedure:

1.Heat oil in apan,when hot add cumin seeds,mustard,urad dal,chenna dal and fry till thry tirn golden color,now add the curry leaves,green chillies,grated ginger and fry till chillies are done.
2.Now add onion and fry till they turn soft,add capsicum,grated carrot,green peas and fry for 3-4 mins.When the capsicum turn soft add the chopped tomato,mix and cook them covered till tomatoes become smooth.At this time add the salt,coriander powder and fry for a min now add the tomato ketchup,mix evenly and sprinkle few drops of water.Make sure u dont add more water as this make the dish mushy.
3.Finally add the toasted and cut bread pieces,toss well so that all the bread pieces are well coated with the sauce and let it sit on low flame for 2-3 mins,turn off the heat and ready to serve.
4.U can add little lemon juice to this if u like.I added lemon juice jst before eating and it tasted good.

Variation:
U can use the bread directly to the sauce without toasting it but I did toast to my taste.

Cold Coffee

I'm a big fan of coffee.I usually drink coffee in the morning and skip my Breakfast,know that skipping breakfast is not good for health but not used to it.I can have coffee in any time of the day.When ever I feel low first thing I do is to go and grab a cup of it and I feel very refreshing.My mom makes good coffee I miss her every morning :(

Summer is the best time to have cool and refreshing drinks,so made a cold coffee.Each time I talk about cold coffee I always remember a joke from a Telugu movie(sorry I forgot the name of the movie)2 friends go to a coffee shop and order a coffee,one friend say 'A' haves it when its hot and the other friend say 'B' was chit-chatting and was late,then 'A' makes a comment that we can talk later,1st have the coffee else they would charge us Rs 50/- instead of Rs 5/-

Ingredients:

Instant Coffee Powder:2 spns
Hot Water:2 spns(just to dissolve the instant coffee powder in it)
Milk:1/2 cup
Vanilla Ice-Cream:1 scoop
Ice Cubes:4-5
Sugar :To Taste

Procedure:

Mix 2 spns of coffee powder in 2 spns of hot water,make sure that it has no lumps.Now add all the other ingredients listed to a blender and blend on medium speed till all the ingredients are well blended with each other.Now Drizzle little chocolate syrup in the glass and pour the coffee mixture an add little ice-cream if u want else just sprinkle little coffee powder on top and serve it chill.

Chocolate Dipped Apple

Best way to create any enjoy a fruit in the way we love.Recently I saw this apple in Costco,made fresh he gave me a small piece to taste.I liked it and asked him if he can sell 1 apple for me.He said Sorry we are not allowed to sell 1 piece u need to buy dozen of them.I was like hmmm how can I have them all,as my hubby is not a big fan of this kind of stuff,so thought of making 1 for me the way I want,used chocolate instead of caramel.Sky is the limit..right!!! u can make your own choice.I saw a store in vegas which sells Caramel dipped apples and topped with Marshmallow....Isn't yummmy.

Ingredients:

Green Apple:2 medium
Sweetend Chocolate:4 pieces(I used a bar so used half of it)
Nut Topping:1 small pack(Bought a small packet from baking aisle)
Sweetened Coconut:1/4 cup

Procedure:

1.Wash the apples,pat them dry and put aside.
2.Take the chocolate pieces in a micro-safe bowl and turn on the oven for 30 secs bring it out and mix well.Now repeat again for another 30 secs.Stir well,so that chocolate is completely melted.
3.Remove the stem and pierce a candy stick to hold the apple easily.Now dip the apple in the melted chocolate and coat it evenly on 3/4 of the apple.Roll this coated apple on the nut toppings and put aside.Repeat the same with another apple and top it with sweetened coconut and cool them in fridge for 5-10 mins and serve them.

Sarson Ka Saag & Makki Ki Roti

Saag is leafy dish made in many variations.I saw this recipe from showmethecurry.com and followed the same and finally ended up with a yummy dish and Makki Ki roti is a good combination with the saag called Sarson Ka Saag.Thanks to Anuja and Hetal for this lovely dish.Check the videos from showmethecurry.com

The only variation I made is just added 2 spns of Wheat flour to the corn flour mixture in order to avoid the Roti to break while pressing and tranfering it to the pan.Try this and enjoy the dish as we did.

Veggie Loaf & Steamed Veggies

I'm very familiar with this combination from many years.Vegetarian Steak Sizzler is one of my favorite dish in a Restaurant at our home town .I love to hear the sizzling sound it makes when it is brought to the table when ready to serve.I never knew what a steak was when I was a kid.After my marriage was fixed I told my hubby about my favorite dish in our Local Restaurant and my hubby responded with exclamation "Is It!!! Do U eat Steak" then I came to know what is meant by steak and later I showed him the menu card when we went to that restaurant and later every time we talk about it,we have smile on our faces.2 days back I went to a grocery store and saw a Vegetable loaf in the frozen section and then got an idea of making this Veggie Pattie shaped as a loaf and after baking/grilling it would look like a loaf of steak and made the sauce as the one I had with Vegetarian Steak Sizzler for our dinner yesterday.That Was a big big hit,so want to share it here.


Ingredients:
Vegetable Loaf:

Potato:2 medium(boiled,peeled and mashed)Cabbage:1/2 cup(very finely chopped)Sweet Peas:1/2 cup(frozen)
Carrot:1(peeled and grated)
Salt:To Taste
Chilli Powder:To Taste
Garam Masala:A Pinch
Coriander Powder:1/2 spn
Cumin Powder:1/2 spnChat Masala:1/4 spn
Green Chilli:2-3(finely chopped)
Red Chilli Powder:1/2 spn
Lemon Juice Extracted from half lemon
Bread Crumbs:1/2 cupOil:2 spns

Procedure
(Vegetarian Loaf):

1.Heat oil in a pan,when hot add the finely chopped cabbage,grated carrot and fry for 2-3 mins now add the green peas and finely chopped green chilli,mix and now add salt,cumin powder,coriander powder,garam masala,red chilli powder,chat masala and mix well,if the mixture is too dry sprinkle few drops of water.
2.Now add the boiled and mashed potato and mix well so that all the masalas are very well coated to the veggies fry for 2 min on medium flame.
3.Turn off the flame and let the mixture cool down.Take the mixture to a bowl,add lemon juice,bread crumbs,mix evenly and check for the seasonings,adjust if necessary.
4.Pre-heat the oven at 350 degrees.Line a baking sheet with foil,take the prepared potati and cabbage mixture and make it into a loaf and spray cooking spray on top of the loafs and bake in the oven for 12-15 mins after that remove the sheet from oven and turn the loafs to the other side and bake them again for another 10-12 mins.5.By now the loafs will be perfectly done on both sides.Now the loafs are ready to serve.
Ingredients:

Steamed Veggies:

Capsicum:1 medium(cut into 1" pieces)
Onion:1 medium(cut into cubes and separate the layers)
Cauliflower:1 Cup(cut into flowerlets)
Beans:1/2 cup(cut into 1" pieces)
Carrot:1/2 cup(Cut into 1" Strips)Mushroom:1/4 cup(sliced)Green Peas:1/4 cup
Paneer:1/4 cup(cubed)
Butter:1 spn
Salt:To Taste
Pepper:To Taste

Procedure:
(Steamed Veggies):

1.Wash all the veggies under cold water and put them in the hot boiling water(other than capsicum,onion and paneer) and let them boil till they are 90% done.Put these boiled veggies aside.2.In a wok,add butter and when it melts saute onion,paneer and capsicum in butter,when they become soft put in the other boiled veggies,toss them so that butter is coated all over the veggies,now sprinkle salt and pepper to taste.
3.Veggies are ready to serve.

Ingredients:
Sauce:
Onion:1 small(very finely chopped)
Ginger:1 spn(finely chopped)
Garlic:1 spn(finely chopped)
Green Chilli:2(finely chopped)
Tasting Salt:A PinchSoy Sauce:1/2 spn
White Veniger:1 spn
Tomato Ketchup:2 spns(adjust to ur taste)
Corn Starch:1/2 spn(mix this in water to make a smooth paste)
Salt:To Taste
Pepper:To Taste
Oil:1 spn

Procedure
(Making Sauce):

Heat a wok,add oil when hot add chopped onion,ginger ,garlic and fry till onions turn soft,now add the tasting salt,white veniger,soy sauce,tomato ketchup and mix well.Add 1 cup of water and bring the mixture to boil.Taste the mixture and adjust the seasonings if needed.Finally add the corn starch paste to the mixture and cook it on low flame for 2-3 mins and finally add some spring onion and now the sauce is ready.

Assembling:
Place the done veggie loaf on one side of the plate and steamed veggies on the other side.Gently pour the sauce on the veggie loaf and serve it hot.I'm sure you will surely love this.

Frittata

Frittata is very much similar to an Omelet but the only difference is using some extra ingredients to improve the taste.I just used Ricotta cheese,as I don't have fresh Parmesan cheese at home.U can use the veggies of ur choice,ofcourse Pasta can also be of any shape and kind. This tasted good than a regular omelet.Here goes the recipe.


Ingredients:

Eggs:4 no(break open the eggs into a bowl and beat them smooth)
Onions:1 medium(cut)
Pasta(Any Shape of ur choice):1/2 cup(cook it in water by adding salt,drain the water and put aside)
Tomato:2(cut 1 tomato into cubes n 1 tomato into rounds)
Mushroom:10 no(cut into quarters)
Capsicum:1/2(chopped)
Ricotta Cheese:3 spns
Whole Milk:1/4 cup
Parmesan Cheese:2 spns
Salt:To Taste
Pepper:To Taste
Chilli Powder To Taste
Chopped Cilantro:2 spns
Green Chillies:2-3(Adjust to taste,very finely chopped)
Oil:2 spns
Procedure:

1.In a pan add a spoon of oil and add onion,capsicum,mushroom,tomato and toss them for 3-5 mins,till they are 50% done.
2.Add milk,ricotta cheese,salt,chilli powder,chopped green chillies,chopped cilantro,pepper and mix it well,make sure that the chili powder will not form lumps.
3.Now add the tossed veggies and cooked pasta to the egg mixture and pour this into a non-stick pan which is greased with oil.Put this pan on flame and wait till the batter settles down and cooks at the bottom.This make take around 3-5 mins.
4.Now when the bottom is well done place the tomato rounds and sprinkle the Parmesan cheese on the top and cover the pan with a silver foil and put it in the oven pre-heated at 325 degrees for 8-10 mins.By now the top also cooks well ,carefully take it to a plate and cut into 6 quarters.
5.Serve it hot with chilli sauce or Tomato Ketchup.

Note:

Using a non-stick pan in the oven is not at all suggestable but I don,t have a cast-iron skillet so had to use it.U better use a skillet if u have one.

Paneer Cashew Korma

Raw Cashew is only available during Summer.I got this cashew from my Home town when I went to India for my sister's marriage.My hubby was asking me to make this dish from last 2 years but couldnt make it as I told u that the cashew I used in this dish is seasonal.Luckily I got it this time and made it from him.Paneer and Raw Cashew makes a yummy combination.

Ingredients:

Paneer:1/2 packet(Dice the paneer and shallow fry them till golden color on all sides)
Raw Cashew:250 gms(Soak the cashew in hot water for 30 mins and then peel the skin and use them)
Onion:1 Medium(finely chopped)
Tomato:1 mediun(finely Chopped)
Coconut:2 spns
Poppy Seeds:2 spns(soak tthe poppy seeds in water for 30 mins)
Ginger Garlic Paste:1.5 spn
Salt:To TasteGreen Chillies:4
Curd:1 spnChilli Powder:To Taste
Cilantro:To Garnish
Oil:3 spns
Garam Masala Powder:1/2 spn

Peeling the skin of the cashew is a time consuming part but its really worthy to spend that time.

Procedure:

1.Heat oil in a pan,add finely chopped onions,sprinkle little salt and fry them till the onions turns soft,add the cut green chillies,ginger garlic paste and fry till the raw flavor is removed.
2.Now add the chopped tomato,cover it and cook till tomatoes turn smooth and mushy,add a spn of curd and mix well.
3.Meanwhile blend the poppy seeds and coconut into a very smooth paste.
4.When the tomatoes turn smooth add the coconut and poppy seed paste,add 1/2 cup of water and mix well.
5.Add salt and chilli powder to taste,add garam masala powder and cook the mixture till oil separates,stir well and now add the shallow fried paneer and peeled cashew to the done mixture and cook it on medium flame for 8-10 mins and finally garnish it with cilantro.
6.Serve it hot with any flavored rice or Chapati.

Peppery Corn

Sweet Corn is now a common item in many shopping malls and movie Theaters in India,I used to have atleast two of them,of all the flavors I love to eat pepper flavored corn.Can be made in no time.


Ingredients:

Sweet Corn:1 cup(I used frozen corn)
Salt:To Taste
Pepper:To taste
Lemon Juice:To Taste
Butter:1/2 spn

Procedure:

1.In a pan,add butter and let it melt,now add the sweet corn and fry for 2 mins and cover it with lid for 4-5 mins,mix once in a while.
2.Fry well,add salt,pepper and toss well so that they mix evenly.
3.Finally add lemon juice,toss again and serve hot.

Strawberry Cooler

Chilling drink in hot summer,saw this recipe in food network channel and made it last week.Very simple ingredients,strawberry,orange and simple sugar syrup blended along with ice to make this cooler.
Ingredients:

Strawberry:1 cup(rinsed and chopped)
Orange:1
Water:1 cupSugar:1 cup
Ice Cubes:1 cup

Procedure:

1.In a sauce pan dissolve 1 cup of sugar in 1 cup of water,grate the orange zest from the fresh orange,turn on the flame and let this mixture come to boil,turn off the flame and let the mixture cool.
2.In a blender add the chopped strawberries,juice from the orange,sugar syrup along with the orange zest,ice cubes and blend them together,make sure that they r very finely blended.
3.When done serve them cool.

This would be a refreshing drink for those who love strawberries as I do :)

Sending this recipe to Show Me Your Smoothie Event at Dil Se.I'm also adding Carrot Orange Juice, Lemonade and Raw Mango Juice to go for this event.

Caramel Crunch Cake :)

On a boring day me my sister wanted to experiment a rolled cake,but unfortunately we couldn't make a roll out of the cake ,taste of the cake was yummy but the cake is very thin which broke the cake while rolling,I didn't want to trash the cake for its taste,finally I made the Caramel crunch to make a simple cake with whipped cream icing.Finally the cake was Superb.Wanted to share this pic with u here.

Covered the cake sides with the crunch and used a heart shaped cookie cutter as a guideline to decorate the top of the cake.

I still want to try a rolled cake as we all know the famous saying "Try n Try Till U Succeed" :)