Monday, January 21, 2019

Masiyal Kofta Curry | Fried Vegetable balls in Spinach Curry | Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe | Masterchefmom's Fusion Recipe

Masiyal Kofta Curry

Hi Supermoms,

For me, planning weekend lunch menu is always tricky. I am torn between North Indian and South Indian cuisine. As my children grew up in the North, they love North Cuisine equally or more than South Cuisine. A kadhi chawal or chole chawal will any day rank higher in their favourite list than a rasam or kootu. Whereas, it is not the case with us. 

Few days ago, I striked a balance between these two great cuisines and created 'Keerai Masiyal Kofta' or "Masiyal Kofta Curry' and  it worked out brilliantly. 'Masiyal' in Tamil language means 'To mash'. The flavours were on point and liked by every one. The best part were the koftas ( fried vegetable balls ) that were so tasty to eat. Some were gobbled even before I dunked them in the spinach gravy. 

The spinach gravy was also yummy . Interestingly, it can be served as one single curry dish or can be served as Kofta pakoras and spinach chutney . Either way, they are going to be loved. I added tamarind to bring more tanginess to the dish and to pair it with rice. If you are going to serve it along with roti/phulka/chapatis, then you can add an extra tomato and skip the tamarind. 

Also, I have added garlic to the masiyal , which is  optional. You can add or reduce the amount of green chillies according to your spice preference. I loved the texture and taste of the spinach masiyal . I have combined two, not so popular( at home) but very healthy vegetables - spinach and bottle gourd in this recipe . 

When you fry koftas with oil in the right temperature, it does not absorb too much oil. Also, grate the bottle gourd, only when you are ready to fry them. Squeeze the extra water from the bottle gourd and add chick pea flour to make a stiff dough. Alternatively, you can use a Appe pan to shallow fry the kofta. 

The Masiyal Kofta Curry  served with steaming hot and fluffy rice turned out to be a super delicious and satisfying weekend meal. You are sure to love it. I am so excited to share this recipe with all of you.

Masiyal Kofta Curry

Masiyal Kofta Curry :

Preparation time : 15 minutes
Cooking time : 50 minutes 
Serves : 4
1 cup = 250 ml cup 

Ingredients :

For the Kofta :

2 cups grated bottle gourd ( peel, de-seed and grate) 
1 small onion ( finely chopped)
1 green chilli ( finely chopped)
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro/coriander leaves 
1/4 cup chickpea flour/besan 
1 teaspoon corn starch ( optional)
1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder ( I used Kashmiri chilli powder)
1/4 teaspoon jeera powder/ roasted cumin powder 
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
pinch of asafoetida
salt to taste
oil to fry 

For the Keerai Masiyal :

3 cups fresh spinach ( washed and finely chopped)
1 tomato ( finely chopped) 
1 onion 
2 garlic pods 
1/2" ginger 
2-3  green chillies 
1/4 teaspoon thick tamarind paste OR marble size tamarind ( deseeded) 
1/4 cup toor dal/pigeon peas 
salt to taste

For tempering :

1-2 teaspoons oil 
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1-2 dry red chillies ( halved)
2 garlic pods ( finely chopped, optional)
1 sprig curry leaves ( torn roughly)

Method :

1. In a heavy bottom vessel or kadai, add the spinach, tomato, onion, garlic , ginger , green chillies and tamarind.
2. Add salt and  let them cook over low flame for 10 minutes and switch off. 
Chef tip : You can add 1/4 cup of water if required. Spinach leaves water and you can also cover the vessel with a lid . Alternatively, you can also steam the vegetables . 
3. Once the mixture cools, add the cooked dal with the boiled spinach mixture and grind into a creamy masiyal and set it aside.
4. In a wide bowl add all the ingredients given ' For the Kofta' and mix well to form a stiff dough. Roll them into equal size balls.
Chef tip : Squeezing water out of the bottle gourd is an important step. Also add more flour in case the dough is runny. The dough will be a little sticky. 
5. Heat oil in an iron kadai/wok.
6. Drop a small piece of the dough to check the temperature of oil.
7. If it instantly sizzles up, the oil is ready to fry the koftas. 
8. Gently drop the koftas in batches and fry them till they are fully done on all sides.
Chef tip : Once the oil has reached the right temperature, reduce the flame to low/medium to retain the temperature. 
9. Drain the fried koftas on a kitchen towel .
10. Repeat the same process for the remaining batter.
11. In a wide pan or vessel, add the ground masiyal and adjust water quantity.
Chef tip : You can add 1- 1.5 cups of water.
12. Add salt and let the mixture simmer for 10 minutes.
13. Add the koftas and switch off.
14. Heat a small ladle/pan with oil and temper with all the ingredients given for the same.
15. Pour it into the Masiyal Kofta Curry. 

Serve it along with hot rice. Simply delicious !

Masiyal Kofta Curry

If you liked this recipe , you will also love  Kadhi Pakoda Kuzhambu/Kadhi PakoraKuzhambu recipe . 

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom
















Friday, January 18, 2019

Poori Kurma | Special Kurma Recipe for Poori/Puri | Spicy Vegetable Kurma without coconut | Gluten Free Recipe


Poori Kurma | Special Kurma Recipe for Poori/Puri

Hi Supermoms,

My husband's favourite tiffin combo is 'Poori- Kurma'. Poori with Potato Masala or Kurma are very popular in many families. I am sure there will be at least a few in your family who simply love this tiffin combination.  

Today, I made Poori and Kurma for lunch . Typical kurma recipes have coconut and poppy seeds as the main flavouring ingredients, right? There will also be cashew nuts ground into the mixture.  But, the beauty of today's Kurma recipe is that it does not have any of these ingredients. 

I have tasted Old Delhi's famous pumpkin and potato/aloo sabzi for poori and that inspired me to use baby pumpkin in this kurma.  Fry a few dry masalas and chillies along with onions and tomatoes and this forms a great kurma masala. I steamed the vegetables and added it to the kurma masala. The kurma gets it's finishing touches by adding well whipped curd. 

The entire recipe can be made within twenty minutes. The kurma was spicy, tangy and has all the right flavours. Finger licking good ! Beware of over eating pooris  ( which I just did 😋😉). 
The Kurma pairs very well with chapathi /chapati too. 

Poori Kurma | Special Kurma Recipe for Poori/Puri

Poori Kurma | Special Kurma Recipe for Poori/Puri :

Preparation time : 10 minutes
Cooking time : 20 minutes
1 cup = 250 ml cup 
Serves : 4

Ingredients :

For steaming :

10  french beans ( sliced into approximately 1" pieces)
1 carrot ( peeled and sliced into approximately 1" pieces)
1 potato ( peeled and chopped)
1 cup cubed baby pumpkin ( peeled)
4 small garlic pods ( peeled ) ( whole) 

For Kurma Masala:

1 teaspoon oil ( coconut oil or sesame oil )
1 teaspoon fennel seeds/saunf
1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds
1/2" cinnamon stick
1-2 pieces kalpasi/black stone flower
1 star anise
1 teaspoon channa dal/bengal gram 
2 dry red chillies ( I used Kashmiri Chillies)
2 green chillies ( chopped)
1 onion ( sliced)
2 tomatoes ( roughly chopped) 
1/2" ginger ( chopped)

For tempering :

2 teaspoons oil or ghee
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 bay leaf
1 onion ( thinly sliced)
1 tomato ( finely chopped) 

Other ingredients :

1/2 cup whisked curd ( add or reduce according to your taste)
salt to taste
handful of coriander leaves/cilantro ( finely chopped) 

Method :

1. Add vegetables given 'For steaming' in a steaming basket and steam till they are cooked.
2. While the vegetables are steaming, fry the ingredients given under 'For Kurma Masala'. 

3. Grind it to a smooth paste and set it aside.
4. Heat a kadai/heavy bottom vessel with oil and temper with ingredients given for the same. 
5. Now add the ground kurma masala.
6. Adjust water quantity and allow it to cook over low flame for 5 minutes.
7. Add the steamed vegetables and salt. 
8. Cook over low flame for another 5 minutes .
Chef tip : The kurma should not be too thick. It should have gravy so that it is ideal to enjoy along with pooris.
9. Add the whisked curd and cook for another 2 minutes , switch off and garnish.

Optional step : For more taste, you can heat a teaspoon of ghee in a ladle and pour the hot ghee over the kurma before serving. 

Your delicious Poori Kurma is ready !!

Poori Kurma | Special Kurma Recipe for Poori/Puri

Are you looking for more kurma recipes like this one? 

Here are a few that I have shared earlier :



Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom












Thursday, January 17, 2019

Inji Sorasum | Detox Drink | Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe


Inji Sorasum

Hi Supermoms, 

Change of season, travel, outside/ greasy restaurant food can often cause stomach discomfort and throat irritations . At such times, it is always handy to know home remedies/recipes for immediate relief. Today I am going to share a soothing ginger drink, a signature recipe of my aunt Usha Ramesh. 

Having grown up in my grandmother's house for 7 years, I have spent a lot of time with my bubbly and vivacious aunt Usha ( my mother's baby sister). From cooking together to going out with her friends, I have had so much fun with her. I have always admired her smartness , cheerfulness and charisma. My aunt is a talented cook and I was so lucky to have tasted a lot of her yummy food  during my growing up years.

My aunt Usha in action
During my recent trip to the South , I met my aunt and we started chatting about our favourite topic - Food.   I was so thrilled to note down few recipes from her.  The first one is this 'Inji Sorasum'. My aunt shares that the recipe is a tried and tested one and she always makes this soothing drink whenever one is down with an aching throat. Interestingly, this drink can also be served as an appetiser. The Inji Sorasam acts as a stomach cleanser too. 

Inji Sorasam is a simple recipe which has just three ingredients and can be made easily without using a gas stove.  You are going to love this flavourful drink. 

Inji Sorasum

Inji Sorasum :

Recipe Courtesy : Mrs. Usha Ramesh
Preparation time : 1-2 hours 
Serves : 2-3 
1 cup = 250 ml cup 

Ingredients :

50 gm fresh ginger ( peeled and roughly chopped)
1/4 cup coriander seeds/dhania 
2 tablespoons cumin seeds/jeera 
1 teaspoon honey 
1-2 teaspoon lemon juice 
1 teaspoon jaggery or sugar ( to taste, adjust quantity) 
2 cups water ( approximately) 

Note : You can double the quantity according to the number of people you will be serving . You can add tulsi leaves or Karpooravalli /omavalli /Ajwain leaves also. 


Method :

1. Soak ginger, coriander seeds, cumin seeds in approximately 2 cups of water for 1 to 2 hours .
2. Filter the ingredients and set aside the soaked water.
3. Grind the three ingredients into a fine paste using little water. 
4. Add the paste to the drained water and add 1-2 cups of water. 
Chef tip : Reduce or increase the water quantity depending upon the strength of ginger . 
5. Add sugar or jaggery to taste( optional)
6. Add lemon juice , honey and mix well. 

Your healing ginger drink- Inji Sorasum is now ready !


Inji Sorasum

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom 





Monday, January 14, 2019

Thengai Pongal | Coconut Pongal | Masterchefmom's Pongal 2019 Special Recipe


Thengai Pongal | Coconut Pongal

Hi Supermoms,

I am super excited to share the special recipe that I have created for this year's Pongal Festival- Coconut Pongal . Before sharing the recipe, I need to share the story behind the recipe.

Though my husband , daughter and myself  love  Ven Pongal , my son is not a fan of this tiffin. So, whenever I make pongal for breakfast or brunch, I make something else that he likes. He liked the Pongal Fried Rice that I had made a few months ago and that really motivated me to keep trying different versions of pongal , so that he will fall in love with it just like us. 

I wanted to add his favourite ingredient - coconut and also use less of whole peppercorns and cumin seeds . The most favourite side dish for Ven Pongal is Coconut Chutney . So, thought of integrating coconut chutney into the pongal . Also, the big chunks of fresh ginger was not a very popular ingredient. So, used dry ginger powder . So, the coconut pongal has all the essential pongal flavours in a suble form , blended well along with red chillies and coconut. 

Adding ghee roasted cashew nut makes it richer and more delicious. A tasty pongal recipe that is so simple and refreshing. The coconut pongal was polished off in minutes and was finger licking good. You can serve it with Vengaya kosu Pongal Kuzhambu or Kathirikkai/Brinjal Gothsu

Thengai Pongal | Coconut Pongal

Thengai Pongal | Coconut Pongal Recipe :

Preparation time : 10 minutes
Cooking time : 20-25 minutes
Serves : 3
1 cup = 250 mlc cup

Ingredients:

1 cup raw rice ( I used Sona Masoori)
1/2 cup husked and split green gram/moong dal
4 cups water 
salt to taste 

For tempering :

1 tablespoon ghee/clarified butter 
1 teaspoon bengal gram/channa dal
4-5 dry red chillies
1/2 teaspoon grated dry ginger 
4-5 black peppercorns ( freshly and finely powdered)
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds ( freshly and finely powdered) 
1 sprig curry leaves ( torn roughly ) 
1 cup fresh coconut ( grated) 
5-6 cashew nuts ( halved) 
Tempering Ingredients


Method :

1. Wash  the rice , moong dal together.
2. Add water and salt  and pressure cook them over medium flame upto 4 whistles and switch off.

3. Heat a kadai or a heavy bottom pan/vessel with ghee and roast the cashew nuts , remove and set them aside.
4. In the same kadai, using the remaining ghee, add other ingredients given under ' For Tempering'. 


5. Add the roasted cashews also along with the tempering and pour it into the cooked rice and dal mixture.


6. Mix well and serve immediately.
Chef tip : If the rice and dal mixture is too dry, you can heat a cup of water and add it to the mixture. Keep it on low flame for 5 minutes and keep stirring till well blended and serve. For additional taste, add a dollop of ghee on top of the pongal when serving. 

Thengai Pongal | Coconut Pongal

Your Scrumptious Coconut Pongal is now ready . 

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom










Friday, January 11, 2019

Puli Pongal | Thanjavur Style Puli Pongal Recipe | Gluten Free and Vegan

Puli Pongal | Thanjavur Style Puli Pongal Recipe

Hi Supermoms,

Recently during my trip to Thanjavur, I was reminded of a very traditional Pongal recipe- Puli Pongal . It was on the menu of a famous food joint and when I got back home, made this for the family. 

'Puli' means tamarind and as the name suggests, this tiffin is tangy and tamarind is the main ingredient. You might have tasted the popular Puliodarai /Puli Sadam , right? If you love that taste, then you are sure to love this recipe as well.

The puli pongal is made using broken rice . All the spices that are used for Puliodarai are used for this recipe too. In some families, this dish is called 'Puli Upma'. 

It is a great tiffin recipe and we enjoy it as early dinner. It is also a delicious evening snack and a speciality breakfast.  In some homes, the puli pongal is set and cut into cubes just like Mor Kali

The best part of this pongal recipe is that sesame oil is used to flavour the dish. If you are looking for weekday tiffin ideas, do not forget to bookmark this traditional recipe. 

You can enjoy this pongal as is or can serve it with Vedi Mor kuzhambu or your choice of chutneys or Traditional Thanjavur pachadi

Puli Pongal | Thanjavur Style Puli Pongal Recipe

Puli Pongal | Thanjavur Style Puli Pongal Recipe :

Preparation time : 40 minutes
Cooking time : 35 minutes
1 cup = 250 ml cup 
Serves : 2

Ingredients :

1 cup raw rice ( I used Sona Masuri)
1/4 cup tamarind ( loosely packed ) ( Soak in 1/2 cup warm water and extract juice)
4 cups water ( adjust)
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
salt to taste

For tempering :

1 tablespoon sesame oil
4-5 dry red chillies ( use Salem chillies for most authentic taste) 
1 teaspoon bengal gram/channa dal
1/2 teaspoon husked and split black gram/urad dal
1/4 cup peanuts 
1 sprig curry leaves ( torn roughly) 
pinch of asafoetida 

To grease ( optional)
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil 


Method :

1. Wash and soak rice in enough water for 15 minutes.
2. Drain excess water and spread it in a kitchen towel for at least 15 minutes. 
3. Grind the rice coarsely and set it aside.
4. Heat a heavy bottom pan with oil and temper with ingredients given for the same.
5. Add the tamarind water , turmeric powder and salt.
6. Cook over low flame for 5-7 minutes.
7. Add the remaining cups of water.
8. Once it starts to boil, add the prepared broken rice little at a time and keep stirring to avoid any lumps. 


8. Cook over low flame till the rice is well cooked and the excess water is absorbed.
9. You can finish off by adding a teaspoon of sesame oil on top of the puli pongal.
10. You can also grease a plate and spread the pongal.


11. Cut them in desired shapes and serve.
Puli Pongal | Thanjavur Style Puli Pongal Recipe

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom




Strawberry Gothsu | Strawberry Gotsu/Gostu Recipe | Gluten Free and Vegan


Strawberry Gothsu | Strawberry Gotsu/Gostu Recipe |

Hi Supermoms,

Pongal is a tasty and nourishing breakfast/lunch/tiffin option . In my previous post I had shared an interesting, easy and tasty Poha Pongal recipe. Do try it soon. 

Pongal is traditionally served along with a tangy side dish known as 'Gothsu/Gotsu/Gostu'. I have shared my Grandmother's most popular gothsu recipe with you earlier. 

Strawberries are in season and it is one my favourite fruits to experiment. I served the Poha Pongal with Strawberry gothsu and it was such a big hit at home. 

You will be thrilled to know that this recipe just needs a handful of ingredients and within 15 minutes, you have a tasty and tangy side dish to serve along with pongal. 

I am so excited to share my Strawberry Gothsu recipe with all of you. 


Strawberry Gothsu | Strawberry Gotsu/Gostu Recipe |



Strawberry Gothsu/Gotsu: 

Preparation time : 5 minutes
Cooking Time : 15-20 minutes 
Serves : 2
1 cup = 250 ml cup 

Ingredients :

10 -12 strawberries ( finely chopped)
2-3 green chillies ( roughly chopped) 
1/4 teaspoon Kashmiri Chilli powder 
1/2 teaspoon jaggery ( optional)
salt to taste

For tempering :

1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds

Note : You can also add 1 tomato (finely chopped) or 4-5 cherry tomatoes ( halved) . Adjust green chilli quantity depending upon the tartness of the strawberries. 

Method :

1. Heat a kadai or pan with oil and temper with mustard seeds.
2. Add green chillies and fry them in oil for a few seconds
3. Now add the chopped strawberries ,salt and chilli powder.












4. Allow the strawberries to breakdown and become mushy.












5.Add 1.5 to 2 cups of water and allow the mixture to cook over low to medium flame for another 10 minutes.
6.Switch off. 

Your tangy and spicy Strawberry Gothsu is now ready to be served along with Poha Pongal

Strawberry Gothsu | Strawberry Gotsu/Gostu Recipe |

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom




Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Aval Pongal | Poha Pongal | Beaten Rice Pongal Recipe

Poha Pongal

Hi Supermoms,

The biggest Tamil Festival - 'Pongal' is round the corner. The four day harvest festival is celebrated throughout South India with great enthusiasm. The tamil word 'Pongal' literally means 'To boil to the brim' or 'Overflow'. 

Milk, sugar and rice are boiled together on this special Thanksgiving day .  When the milk overflows, it is our tradition to utter the words 'Pongalo Pongal' that is symbolic to bring prosperity and good luck  in our homes. 

There are so many varieties of Pongal that are made in different regions of the country. I have earlier shared different variations of Pongal like the Sigappu Arisi Pongal Ven Pongal, Rava PongalDhaniya Pongal, Pongal Fried Rice, Moonu Raja Pongal, Oats Pongal , Varagu Arisi Pongal  recipes with you all. 

Today, I am sharing an another interesting savoury Pongal variety that can be made in minutes. It is delicious, nutritious and is so simple for anyone to make at home. 

Poha Pongal

Aval/Poha Pongal :

Preparation time : 5 minutes
Cooking time : 15 -20 minutes
Serves : 2 
1 cup = 250 ml cup 

Ingredients :

1 cup poha/flattened rice/beaten rice
1/2 cup husked and split green gram /moong dal 
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder 
salt to taste 

For tempering :

1-2 teaspoon ghee/clarified butter
1/2" ginger ( finely chopped)
1/2 teaspoon peppercorns ( coarsely crushed)
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds/jeera ( coarsely crushed)
5 cashew nuts (halved) 
1 sprig curry leaves ( roughly torn)

Method :

1. In a heavy bottom pan /vessel heat 3 cups of water and add the rinsed moong dal .
2. Add turmeric powder and cook over medium flame till the dal is soft .
3. While the dal is cooking , wash the aval/poha/beaten rice and soak it in 1/2 cup water for just 5 minutes. 
4. Once the dal is mushy and well cooked, add the soaked beaten rice.
5. Add salt and adjust the water quantity if the pongal gets dry.
Chef tip : The pongal tastes best when served in a flowy consistency. 
6. Switch off.
7. Heat a small pan or a heavy iron ladle with ghee and temper with ingredients given for the same. 
8. Pour it over the poha pongal and mix .

Your delicious Poha Pongal is now ready to be served.

Poha Pongal

I have compiled more Pongal Recipes for all of you. Click here to get the recipes. 


Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom











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