April 30, 2016

Upma Pesarettu






Pesarettu is a common breakfast in Andhra pradesh / Telangana which is prepared using green moong dal. This is easy to prepare and also healthy as it consists of green gram. Green chillies and ginger is added along with the green gram while grinding to enhance the taste of pesarettu. This can be served as such or stuffed with a prepared rava upma. To make it more healthy, wheat rava upma can also be stuffed inside. In few hotels, this upma stuffed pesarettu is also called as MLA pesarettu. One upma pesarettu for breakfast along with ginger chutney will be a tummy filling meal.




Ingredients :

1 Cup Green gram dal / Pachapayar / Pesara pappu
2 Tbsp Rice 
Salt to taste 
2 Green chillies
Small piece of ginger 
2 Cups Rava upma 
1 Cup Onions, Finely chopped 
Finely chopped coriander leaves or curry leaves 
2 Tbsp Red chilli powder 

Method :

Wash and soak green gram along with rice for 5 hours or overnight .

Drain the water completely and grind into batter consistency along with green chillies and ginger.
( Add very little water while grinding ).

Once done, transfer it to a bowl and add the required amount of salt.

Mix well and the batter should not be too thick or thin, so adjust water accordingly.

Heat dosa pan and using green gram batter prepare like regular dosa in a medium flame.

Sprinkle finely chopped onions evenly on the peserettu along with coriander leaves or curry leaves.

Sprinkle red chilli powder on top of the chopped onions and smear little oil.

Once the pesarettu gets cooked, spoon in one ladle of rava upma and evenly spread it on the pesarettu.

Fold the one side of pesarettu and cook it for half a minute.

Once done, remove from the flame and repeat the process for the remaining batter.

Serve hot.





Serving Options :

Serve hot with Ginger chutney.


April 29, 2016

Rajma Masala






Rajma masala is a very popular North Indian side dish which is prepared using rajma / kidney beans and onion - tomato masala. There are different varieties of rajma available in the market and I have used light red colored beans in this recipe. The cooked kidney beans is simmered in an onion - tomato mixture along with a spices to get a delicious gravy. This gravy goes excellent with hot rice and also can be served with Indian breads.





Ingredients :

1 Tbsp Oil 
1 Tsp Cumin seeds / Jeera
1 Onion, Finely chopped
2 Tsp Ginger - garlic paste
2 Large Tomato, Finely chopped
1 Cup Rajma / Kidney beans
1/4 Tsp Turmeric powder 
1 Tsp Chilli powder 
1/2 Tsp Cumin powder 
1/2 Tsp Garam masala powder 
Salt to taste 
Coriander leaves for garnishing

Method :

Wash and soak rajma over night.

Drain the water and pressure the soaked beans for 5 - 6 whistles by adding little salt and 2 cups of water.

Once done, remove from the flame and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan and add jeera followed by chopped onion.

Saute till the onion turns translucent and add ginger - garlic paste.

Saute till the raw smell of ginger garlic paste goes off.

Meanwhile, grind the chopped tomatoes into fine paste and add it to the onion mixture.

Cook it for couple of minutes in a medium flame.

Now add the masala powders and salt except garam masala powder.

Mix well and cook it for another couple of minutes.

Add 1/4th cup of water and cook it again till the oil separates from the masala.

Now add the cooked rajma along with half cup of water.

Cover it with the lid and cook it for 5 minutes.

Now add garam masala powder, mash few cooked rajma beans and cook it again for 10 minutes.

Once done, remove from the flame and garnish with coriander leaves.

Serve hot.





Serving Options :

Serve with hot rice or roti.


April 28, 2016

Tomato Biryani Using Brown rice


This biryani is a tangy healthy biryani which is prepared using brown rice. In this recipe, rice and tomato masala are cooked separately and layered in a pan for slow cooking which is also similar to dum biryani. Instead of using coals and dough to seal, I have covered it with an aluminum foil and pan of hot water to avoid the steam to escape from the cooker. Variations can also be made by including tomato puree instead of finely chopped tomatoes. This delicious biryani can be served with onion raita and kurma.






Ingredients :

1 1/2 Cups Brown rice ( I have used Dawaat basmati rice )
1 Bay leaf
1 Star anise
1/2 inch Cinnamon stick 
Salt to taste 
5 Cups Water
2 Tbsp Oil 
2 Onions, sliced 
8 - 10 Tomatoes, finely chopped 
3 Green chillies, slitted 
1 Tbsp Ginger garlic paste
1 Bay leaf 
1/2 inch Cinnamon stick 
1 Tsp Shajeera 
1 Star anise
1 Elachi 
1/4 Tsp Turmeric powder
1 Tsp Red chilli powder 
1 Tsp Coriander powder 
Salt to taste 
Handful of coriander leaves, finely chopped 

Method :

Wash and soak the basmati brown rice for 30 minutes.

Boil the measured water along with salt, star anise, cinnamon stick and bay leaf.

Drain the water from rice and add it to the boiling water.

Cook it for 15 minutes in a medium flame and drain the water.

Keep the rice aside.

Heat oil in a thick bottom pan or cooker and add shajeera followed by bay leaf, cinnamon, star anise and elachi.

Add the sliced onions along with ginger garlic paste and fry till the raw smell of paste goes off.

Add the chopped tomatoes and cook till it turns soft and mushy.

Add the masalas ( turmeric, chilli and coriander ) along with the required amount of salt.

Cook it till the raw smell goes off and add half cup of water.

Simmer the flame and cook till the oil separates from the gravy.

Once done, remove from the flame and evenly spread the masala at the bottom of the same pan / cooker.

Sprinkle little coriander leaves on top of the masala.

Now layer the masala with cooked brown rice and top it with remaining coriander leaves.

Cover the pan / cooker with an aluminum foil and place a big plate on top of it.

Fill hot water in a big bowl and place it on top of the cooker.

Heat an iron dosa pan and simmer the flame completely.

Place the cooker on top of it along with the hot water filled bowl.
 
Cook it for 15 - 20 minutes, switch off the flame and keep aside for 5 minutes.

Gently mix the rice and masala without breaking the rice.

Serve hot.





Serving Options :

Serve hot with onion raita.


April 27, 2016

Dondakaya Curry / Ivy Gourd Curry / Kovakai Curry


As I had mentioned in my Spinach Mango dal recipe, posting my second telangana style recipe which I learned from our friend. Ivy gourd is called donkaya in telugu and kovakai in tamil. This delicious curry goes perfect with any variety of rice and personally I served with curd rice. The addition of coconut paste is the key ingredient which enhances the flavor and taste of the curry.


Ingredients :

30 Dondakaya / Ivy gourd / Kovakai, sliced
2 Tbsp Oil 
1/2 Tsp Mustard seeds
1/2 Tsp Jeera / Cumin seeds
1 Tbsp Groundnuts / Peanuts 
1 Tsp Urad dal
A pinch of Hing
2 Onions, sliced
2 Green chillies, sliced 
3 Springs of Curry leaves
1/4 Tsp Turmeric powder
1 Tsp Red chilli powder
1/2 Tsp Cumin / Jeera powder 
1 Tsp Coriander powder 
Salt to taste

To roast and grind :

1/4 Cup Coconut pieces, finely chopped 
1 Tsp sesame seeds
1 Tbsp Ground nuts

Method :

Dry roast and grind  the given ingredients in "To roast and grind" to fine paste by adding little water.

Once done, remove and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan / kadai and add mustard seeds.

Once it starts spluttering, add jeera seeds followed by peanuts, curry leaves, urad dal and hing powder.

Fry and add the sliced onions along with green chillies.

Saute till the color of onions changes into light brown and add the sliced ivy gourd pieces.

Mix well and cook it for couple of minutes.

Now add the masala powders ( Turmeric, chilli, coriander and jeera ) along with the required amount of salt.

Cook it for a minute and add 2 tbsp of water.

Cover the pan and cook till the veggie gets cooked and turns dry in a lower flame.

Add the coconut paste and mix well.

Cook it again for 5 minutes or till the paste blends well with the veggie.

Once done, remove from the flame and serve.


 Serving Options :

Serve with hot rice or any rice varieties.








April 26, 2016

Minty Mango Lemonade / Summer Special


Quench your thirst with this flavorful refreshing tangy drink prepared using raw mango and lemon. The mango and mint leaves are pressure cooked and made into smooth puree is further mixed up with fresh lemon juice and sugar syrup. This can also be refrigerated in a glass bottle to beat the heat anytime of the day.


Ingredients :

1 Raw Mango ( Large size )
1 Lemon ( Large size ) 
1 Cup Sugar 
2 Cups Water for boiling mango 
1 Cup Water for sugar syrup 
Handful of Mint leaves
 
Method :

In a pressure cooker, add raw mango along with mint leaves and 2 cups of water.

Pressure cook it for 2 whistles and switch off the flame.

Once the pressure gets released, peel the skin of mango and grind the remaining ingredients into smooth puree.

Strain the puree and keep aside to cool.

Meanwhile, add sugar and water in a bowl and boil it for couple of minutes or till the sugar gets dissolved and gets thick consistency ( not string consistency ).

Once done, remove from the flame and cool it completely.

Add lemon juice to the raw mango - mint puree along with sugar syrup and mix well.

Transfer it to a glass bottle and refrigerate.


To Serve :

Fill the glass cup with 3/4th of mango lemonade and fill the remaining with chilled water to serve.

or

Fill the glass cup with ice cubes and pour the mango lemonade to serve.

Note :

While serving, adjust the water quantity according to taste bud.


April 25, 2016

Spinach & Mango Dal


Few days back, attended wedding function in my husband's colleague house and got a wonderful chance to learn lots of delicious authentic Telangana style cooking. His family members were so generous to share few recipes and also made me so comfortable to click pictures and videos. Among all the recipes, this delicious dal was on my cards to prepare first. While pressure cooking both the dals along with mango and other ingredients, my home filled with lovely aroma of mango and fresh coriander leaves. The addition of ginger garlic paste at the last stage of cooking enhanced the complete taste of the curry. This yummy dish goes delicious with hot rice and ghee.


Ingredients :

3 Bunches of Spinach leaves, chopped
Handful of Curry leaves
Handful of Coriander leaves
1 Raw Mango, peeled and chopped into pieces
1/2 Cup Toor dal
1/4 Cup Chana dal 
4 Green chillies
1 Tsp Ginger garlic paste
Salt to taste
2 Cups Water 
2 Tsp Oil 
1 Tsp Mustard seeds
1 Tsp Cumin / Jeera seeds
Less than 1/4 Tsp Hing powder 
2 -3 Dry red chillies

Method :

Grind green chillies into fine paste by adding little water and keep aside.

Wash and add both the dals in a pressure cooker along with spinach leaves, curry leaves, coriander leaves, green chilli paste, raw mango pieces and 2 cups of water.

Pressure cook it for 5 whistles and switch off the flame.

Once the pressure gets released, open the cooker lid and mash it using hand masher.

Add ginger garlic paste and required amount of salt to the dal.

Cook it again for couple of minutes.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a small pan and add mustard seeds.

Once it starts spluttering, add cumin seeds followed by hing powder and dry red chillies.

Fry and add it to the spinach - mango dal.

Remove from the flame and serve.



Serving Options :

Serve with hot rice.






April 24, 2016

Mint & Walnut Pesto Sandwich


Pesto is a blend of herb, olive oil, cheese and nuts which is widely used in pasta recipes and in addition, pesto sauce can also be served as a dip or spread. Though the basic pesto requires fresh basil leaves, I have used mint and cilantro along with walnuts to get a flavorful creamy spread for my sandwich. This is a very simple and tasty sandwich which is stuffed only with the flavorful pesto sauce. This is also a perfect breakfast meal as this can be whizzed up in 10 - 15 minutes according to our taste bud in busy mornings. Variations can be made by including veggies to get delicious pesto veggie sandwich.






Ingredients :

1 1/2 Cups Mint leaves
1 Cup Cilantro leaves
4 Garlic pods, peeled
3 Tbsp Walnuts, crushed
1/2 Cup Cheese, grated 
5 Tbsp Olive oil 
Salt to taste 
Bread Slices for sandwich ( I have used whole wheat bread slices in this recipe ) 

Method :

Add mint leaves along with cilantro, garlic pods and walnuts in a food processor or mixer grinder.

Blend it and add the olive oil.

Blend till the mixture turns into smooth paste.

Add the grated cheese and blend again.

Once the pesto gets a smooth and creamy texture, transfer it to a bowl and keep aside.

Take one bread slice, spread butter on one side of the bread and place it on the non stick grill tawa.

Gently spread the mint - walnut pesto sauce on top of it and place another bread slice on it.

Brush little butter on top of the bread slice.

Flip the other side and grill it till both the sides of slices turns golden brown color.

Once done, remove from the tawa and repeat the process for the remaining slices.

Serve hot.





Serving Options :

Serve hot with any fresh juice. 


April 23, 2016

Spicy Peanut Aloo


No veggies can beat potatoes when it is served as side dish and particularly with sambhar rice, rasam rice, lemon rice and curd rice. When crunchy peanuts are included along with the potato, it doubles the taste of curry. In this recipe, the potatoes are boiled in a microwave to speed up the cooking process and the roasted crushed peanuts gives a crunchy and yummy taste. This dish can also be served with phulka or Poori.


Ingredients :

2 Big Potatoes, Cut into small cubes
2 Tbsp Roasted peanuts, crushed
2 Green chillies, slitted
1 Tbsp Oil
1/2 Tsp Cumin / Jeera seeds
A pinch of Hing powder
Less than 1/4 Tsp Turmeric powder
1/4 Tsp Cumin powder
1/4 Tsp Chilli powder
Salt to taste
Finely chopped coriander leaves for garnishing

Method :

Take the cubed potatoes along with 2 tbsp of water in a microwave bowl.

Microwave it for 5 minutes by closing it with a lid.

Once done, remove and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds followed by hing powder and green chillies.

Add turmeric powder followed by chilli powder and cumin powder.

Fry it in a low flame without burning the masalas.

Add the potatoes along with the required amount of salt and mix well.

Cook it for couple of minutes and add the crushed peanuts

Mix well and cook it till the aloo turns dry.

Garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves and remove from the flame.

Serve hot.


Serving Options :

Serve with any variety rice like sambhar rice, rasam rice, curd rice etc.





April 22, 2016

Dal Jodhpuri


Dal jodhpuri is a rajasthani staple food which is served with Rice, Phulka or Roti. While cleaning my cookery book shelves, found this easy dal recipe which I had bookmarked some couple of years back from Good Food Magazine. This is also a healthy side dish prepared using two varieties of dal and also requires very less ingredients to prepare this delicious dal. Adding ghee in this recipe, enhances the taste of dal but for healthier version, substitute it with regular or olive oil.






Ingredients :

1/2 Cup Green Moong dal / Pachapayir 
1/4 Cup Chana dal 
1/4 Tsp Turmeric powder 
Salt to taste 
1 Tbsp Ghee / Oil 
1 Tsp Cumin seeds / Jeera 
1/4 Tsp Hing powder  
4 Dry Red chillies 
2 Cups Water 
Few Coriander leaves, finely chopped

Method :

Wash and soak both the dals for an hour.

Drain the water and add it to the pressure cooker along with turmeric powder, salt and 2 cups of water.

Pressure cook it for 5 whistles and switch off the flame.

Once the pressure gets released, open the lid and mash the cooked dal coarsely.

Heat ghee or oil in a small pan and add cumin seeds followed by hing powder and dry red chillies.

Once the cumin crackles, add it to the cooked dal and mix well.

Garnish with coriander leaves and serve.





Serving Options :

Serve with Rice, Roti and Phulka. 


April 21, 2016

Capsicum Groundnut Chutney / Bell pepper - Peanut Chutney



Healthy twist to our peanut chutney enhances the flavor and taste of chutney. The capsicum is sauteed with groundnuts and other ingredients is further ground into smooth paste to get a rich and creamy chutney. This flavorful chutney can be served as a side dish for Idli and Dosa. I have used green chillies in this recipe which can also be substituted with dry red chillies.


Ingredients :

1 Big Capsicum / Bell pepper, chopped
1/2 Cup peanuts, roasted and skin removed
3 - 4 Green chillies
1/2 inch Ginger piece
Salt to taste
2 Tsp Oil + 2 Tsp oil for Thalimpu
1/2 Tsp Mustard seeds
1/2 Tsp Urad dal
A pinch of Hing

Method :

Heat 2 Tsp oil in a pan and add the chopped capsicum.

Saute it for a minute and add green chillies followed by ginger pieces and groundnut.

Saute it together for another couple of minutes in a medium flame.

Remove from the flame, cool the mixture and grind into smooth paste by adding the required amount of salt and water.

Once done, transfer it to a bowl and keep aside.

Heat the remaining oil in a small pan and add mustard seeds.

Once it starts spluttering, add urad dal followed by hing powder.

Add the seasoning to ground chutney and serve.





Serving Options :

Serve with Idly or Dosa.









April 20, 2016

Iced Lemon Green Tea / Summer Special


The best way to drink tea in this hot season is by making it as a refreshing chilled drink. Quench your thirst anytime of the day by drinking this yummy drink and if the green tea cubes are prepared ahead, it saves lots of time too. Apart from getting refreshed, this iced tea helps in digestion too as it has handful of fresh mint leaves and lemon juice along with the slices.


Ingredients :

2 Cups Water 
2 Green tea bags
1/2 Cup Brown sugar ( can be substituted with white sugar and adjust according to taste ) 
1 Lemon
Handful of Mint leaves 

Method :

Squeeze juice from the lemon and keep aside.

Boil the measured cups of water and switch off the flame.

Add the green tea bags and brew it for 5 minutes.

Discard the tea bags and add brown sugar to it.

Bring it to boil again till the sugar gets dissolved.

Remove from the flame and cool it completely.

Add the squeezed lemon juice and mix well.

Divide the juice and transfer one half to a pitcher along with the fresh mint leaves and refrigerate it.

Pour remaining half of the juice in a ice cubes tray and freeze it.

To serve : Take a tall glass or glass jar and add fresh mint leaves followed by green tea ice cubes, lemon slices and the refrigerated iced lemon tea juice. Serve chill.  



Note :

I have used green tea bags which can be substituted with green tea leaves too. If using leaves, brew and filter the leaves before adding sugar.

Adjust the brewing time according to the taste bud. 

Brown sugar can also be replaced with white sugar or honey.







April 19, 2016

Coriander Seeds Chutney / Dhaniya Chutney / Kothamalli Vithai Chutney


Coriander seeds chutney is a tasty and flavorful chutney prepared using coriander seeds along with onion, garlic, ginger etc. The ingredients are sauteed separately and ground into fine paste is further cooked in a low flame till the oil separates to gives a delicious finger licking taste. This goes perfect with hot Idlis and dosa. And also, this can be served with curd rice.


Ingredients :

2 Onions, Chopped 
2 Tbsp Coriander seeds 
5 - 6 Dry red chillies
1/2 inch Ginger piece
5 Garlic pods, peeled
Small piece of Tamarind 
Salt to taste
2 Tsp Oil  + 2Tbsp Gingelly oil 


For seasoning :

1 Tsp Oil 
1/2 Tsp Mustard seeds
1/2 Tsp Urad dal 
A pinch of Hing

Method :

Heat 1 tsp oil in a pan and add the chopped onions followed by ginger, garlic pods and tamarind piece.

Saute till the color of onions changes to light brown.

Remove from the pan and keep aside.

Add 1 tsp oil in the same pan and add coriander seeds followed by dry red chillies.

Fry it for a minute and remove from the flame.

Add it to the onion mixture and grind into fine paste by adding the required amount of salt and water.

Heat 2 Tbsp gingelly oil in a same pan and add the ground paste.

Cook it in a lower flame till the oil separates from the chutney

Meanwhile, heat 1 Tsp oil in a small pan and add mustard seeds.

Once it starts spluttering, add urad dal and hing powder.

Add the thalimpu to the chutney and serve.


Serving Options :

Serve with hot Idly or Dosa.







April 18, 2016

Spicy Potato Wedges Curry






Instead of preparing the regular potato kurma or curry for roti, I thought why not to use wedges shaped potatoes to prepare spicy gravy. Only the potatoes are cut into wedges and frying part is not involved. This spicy gravy goes perfect with Indian breads like Roti, phulka and naan. The onions and spices are sauteed and made into fine paste to get a delicious taste and texture. I have used pressure cooker method but this can also be prepared using boiled potatoes. Lemon juice can also be added after removing from the flame to balance the spicy taste.


Ingredients :


3 Potatoes, Cut into Wedges
2 Tsp Oil + 1 Tbsp Oil
2 Onions, chopped
1 Bay leaf
1/2 inch Cinnamon stick
2 Tsp Ginger - garlic paste
2 Tomatoes, Finely chopped
3 Green chillies, slitted
1/2 Tsp Kalonji / Onion seeds
1/4 Tsp Turmeric powder
1/4 Tsp Garam Masala
1/2 Tsp Jeera / Cumin powder
1 Tsp Red chilli powder ( Reduce the quantity if you want less spicy gravy )
1 Tsp Coriander powder
Salt to taste
1 Cup Water

Method :

Heat 2 Tsp oil in a pan and add the chopped onions.

Saute for a minute and add bay leaf followed by cinnamon stick and ginger garlic paste.

Saute till the raw smell goes off.

Once done, remove from the flame and grind into smooth paste by adding little water. Keep aside.

Heat the remaining oil in a pressure cooker and add kalonji seeds.

Once it starts spluttering, add the chopped tomatoes along with the green chillies.

Fry till the tomatoes turns soft and add the ground onion paste.

Now add all the masalas ( Turmeric, chilli, coriander, cumin and garam masala ) along with the required amount of salt.

Cook it for 3 minutes till the masala  blends well and add the potato wedges.

Add 1 cup of water and pressure cook it for 4 whistles.

Once the pressure gets released, open the lid and garnish with coriander leaves.

Serve hot.





Serving Options :

Serve hot with Indian breads like Roti, phulka and Naan.









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