Saturday, June 9, 2018

Palak Makai Rice Recipe | Indian Style Spinach Corn Rice | Gluten Free Recipe


Palak Makai Rice Recipe

Hi Supermoms,

I try and add spinach in our meal as frequently as possible. I am sure all of you do the same. We all know the great health benefits of adding spinach in our family's diet. But, the challenge is in bringing variety. To bring some excitement, I try and present spinach in different styles ๐Ÿ˜. Many of you who follow me and my recipes would understand what I am talking about ๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ˜…. 


 Spinach and Corn taste great together. I teamed them up in today's recipe - Palak Makai Rice . This is a healthy and tasty variety rice that will also be  great for lunch box . Due to extreme heat conditions here, I am cooking more of one pot dishes, variety rice and quick meals last  few days. 

I was able to make this rice quickly and was so happy that even the 'fussy' eater loved it. 

Indian Style  Spinach Corn Rice

Palak Makai Rice Recipe:

Preparation time : 10 minutes
Cooking time : 25 minutes
Serves : 4
1 cup = 250 ml cup 

Ingredients :

To steam and grind :

1/2 kg spinach leaves ( wash and chop roughly)
1 large onion ( chopped roughly) 
4 -5 garlic cloves ( peeled)
1 green chilli

To fry :

1 teaspoon ghee ( or oil for vegans)
1 onion ( finely chopped)
1-2 green chillies ( cut lengthwise)
1/2 teaspoon sugar ( optional)
5-6 cashew nuts 

Other Ingredients :

2 cups basmati rice 
2 cups water
1/2 cup sweet corn 
1/4 cup fresh peas 
1 bay leaf 
2 cloves
1 green cardamom
1"cinnamon stick
2 teaspoon ghee 
salt to taste

Method :

1. Wash basmati rice and cook along with 'Other ingredients ' in an open pot or pressure cooker. 


Chef tip : Pressure cook for upto one whistle only . If cooking in open pot make sure that the rice does not become mushy.
2. Steam all ingredients given under ' to steam' for 10 minutes.

3. Once cool, grind it to a paste and set it aside.
4. Heat a kadai/small wok with ghee and fry onions and green chillies  till the onions are brown ( caramelised) and transfer it to a different vessel.


5. Place the kadai back on flame and add 2 teaspoons of ghee and the ground spinach paste , salt.

6. Fry for 4-5 minutes and then add the cooked rice and switch off .
7.  Mix the rice well .
8. Garnish with the fried onions , cashew nuts and green chillies .

Your delicious Spinach Corn rice is now ready !

Palak Makai Rice

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom












Thursday, June 7, 2018

Karaikudi Kathirikai Thokku | Karaikudi Style Brinjal Fry | Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe


Kathirikai Thokku

Hi Supermoms,

Kathirikkai/Brinjal/Aubergine is my husband's favourite vegetable. So, I make it a point to try various dishes using this vegetable. Though Gutti Vankaya Koora,  is his most favourite way of enjoying brinjal, this Chettinad Style fry is a close second. Spicy, tangy and tasty Kathirikkai thokku tastes best when mixed with hot rice and ghee. 

The recipe is not complicated but still requires  patience as slow cooking brings out the best flavours in this dish. The onions have to fry well. The brinjal can be deep fried or pan fried so that they retain taste and texture when mixed with the tomatoes. If you have brinjal lovers at home, this is a must try recipe . 

It is interesting to note that  over the years I have come across people who are either brinjal lovers or haters. There is no mid way ๐Ÿ˜…. 

Kathirikai Thokku

Karaikudi Kathirikai Thokku : 

Preparation time : 10 minutes
Cooking time : 40-45 minutes
Serves : 4
1 cup = 250 ml cup 

Ingredients :

1/2 kg brinjal ( I used small size purple ones)( Cut them into thin slices )
1 red onion ( finely chopped)
1 teaspoon red chilli powder ( adjust)
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
2 tablespoons oil ( I used sesame oil)
salt to taste 

To grind :

1 large tomato ( chopped)
1 red onion ( peeled and chopped)
10 small garlic cloves ( peeled)
1/2 " ginger ( peeled and roughly chopped)

To temper :

1 teaspoon oil
4 cloves
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 sprig curry leaves 

Method :

1. Heat a kadai/small wok with oil and add the cut brinjal.
Chef tip : keep the cut brinjal in water to avoid any discolouration.
2. Keep frying them over low/medium flame till they fry well on all sides.
Chef tip : This step will take 20-25 minutes.
3. In the mean time, add all the ingredients given under 'to grind' into the jar of a mixer and make a smooth paste.
4. Heat a pan or a earthen vessel with oil  and temper with the ingredients given under 'to temper'. 
5. Add the finely chopped onions , red chilli , turmeric powder and allow the onions to fry till they are slightly brown.


6. Add the ground mixture , salt and cook over low flame for 6-7 minutes or till the time the extra moisture is absorbed. 


7. Add the fried brinjal and mix well.


8. Cook over low flame for 3-4 minutes and switch off.

Your delicious Karaikudi Kathirikai Thokku is now ready to be served !

Kathirikai Thokku

Also do try the tasty Dindukal Kathirikai Kurma recipe .

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom








Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Apple Cilantro Chutney | Green Chutney with Apple | Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe

Apple Cilantro Chutney

Hi Supermoms,

"Chutneys are like accessories, they are a must, but don't over do it" says Asha Shivkumar, the author of the cookbook " Masala and Meatballs". I met Asha through her delicious food in instagram and our common passion " Food" connected us instantly. I vividly remember Asha messaging me around three years ago, if I spoke Tamizh at home as I had posted about 'Palgova' that day in my instagram๐Ÿ˜€.

When she shared that she was writing a cookbook , I was more than thrilled. My happiness knew no bounds when I received a copy of the book as a loving gesture from Asha. The cookbook is truly one of a kind with delicious Indian recipes with an American twist . It has spectacular photography of food that tempts you to try them immediately. 

As a chutney lover, the recipe that I tried first was this Green chutney using apples. The taste was so good and it was a perfect compliment to the Potato and Chickpea Burgers that I also made from the book. 

Such a yummy and tasty chutney recipe that can be made in minutes. You can spread them on sandwiches , rolls , add them in your chaat or serve them as an accompaniment to your tea time snacks. 

Apple Cilantro Chutney

Recipe Courtesy : Masala and Meatballs by Asha Shivkumar 

Apple Cilantro Chutney Recipe :

Total  time : 10 minutes
1 cup = 250 ml cup 
Vessel/Equipment required : Food processor/ mixer grinder/blender
Storage : Keeps good for 3-4 days when refrigerated

Ingredients :

1 apple ( cored and chopped)
1 cup cilantro/coriander leaves ( washed and chopped)
1/2 cup mint leaves ( washed and chopped)
2 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/4 onion ( diced) 
2 garlic cloves
3 green chillies ( adjust according to the spice level of the chillies)
2 teaspoons oil ( I omitted as I used the chutney immediately)
salt ( adjust)


Method : 

1. Add all the ingredients into the jar of a mixer and grind to a smooth paste. 

2. You can add water while grinding, if the chutney is too thick. 
Chef tip : I did not add water as the apple was juicy. 

3. Taste and adjust salt.

Your simple and yummy Apple cilantro chutney is now ready.

Apple Cilantro Chutney


Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom








Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Jeeraga Rasam | North Arcot Style Jeera Rasam Recipe | Traditional Cumin Seed Soup Recipe of Tamil Nadu



Hi Supermoms,

To me, 'rasam' is an Emotion. It is  my favourite dish and I feel so happy when I make a great rasam. I have shared so many varieties of rasam before and each recipe is special. It always reminds me of my paternal grandmother Nagalakshmi aka Kuppu . She has set a very high standard for Rasam in our home and to be compared to her cooking , especially rasam is the ultimate compliment. 



I feel so lucky to have tasted her  rasams during my childhood. She was such a kind and loving human being. I often share stories with my children about my summer holidays spent in my grandma's house in Coimbatore. She used to take me and my cousin's to the near by 'Fancy stores' and indulge us with nail polishes and sticker bindis ( which was a big thing those days). All this without my grandfather's knowledge. It was a secret project between grandma and grand daughters and we used to feel so thrilled by our little adventure ๐Ÿ’ž. Small joys of life๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜. Visit to grandma's place is incomplete without enjoying her famous mouth watering  Gulab Jamuns. Well, I will share that story later...

Coming to today's rasam recipe , as the name suggests, the taste is  dominated by cumin seeds/jeera . We all  know the healthy benefits of including cumin seeds in our daily diet. So adding cumin seeds through this rasam recipe, is a great choice๐Ÿ’ฏ . The rasam is easy to make and can be enjoyed as a soup or an appetiser. 

I dedicate this rasam recipe to my dearest Kuppu Paati.



Jeeraga Rasam | North Arcot Style Jeera Rasam Recipe : 

Preparation time : 10 minutes
Cooking time : 20 minutes
Serves : 4
1 cup = 250 ml cup
Special Note on Vessel required : Rasam cooked in the Traditional 'Eeya sombu' gives the most authentic taste . You can however make rasam in earthen vessels or stainless steel.  Also, try using an iron ladle to temper the rasam .

Ingredients :

1 small tomato ( finely chopped) 
small lemon size tamarind ( soak in 1 cup warm water for 10 minutes and extract juice)
1 sprig curry leaves
1 dry red chilli 
salt to taste

To fry and grind : 

1 tablespoon pigeon peas/tuvar dal/toor dal
2-3 dry red chillies
2 teaspoons jeera/cumin seeds
1 teaspoon ghee/clarified butter

To temper :

1 teaspoons ghee/clarified
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
pinch of asafoetida

Method :

1. In the eeya sombu or vessel of your choice add the tamarind juice, tomatoes, curry leaves , dry red chillies and then place it over low flame.
Chef tip : When you are adding the tomatoes to the tamarind juice, press the tomatoes as if you are juicing them into the tamarind extract. Also when you are cooking in eeya sombu , always cook over low flame . 
2. While the rasam is simmering, you can heat a ladle or small pan with ghee and fry the ingredients given under 'to fry and grind' till they turn fragrant and switch off.
3. Transfer this to the small jar of a mixer and grind them coarsely.
4. By this time, the raw smell of the tamarind would have escaped. Add 2 cups of water. 
Chef tip : You can adjust the water quantity after tasting the rasam. 
5. Now add the ground rasam mix and salt.
6. Allow it to simmer till the time the rasam froths on the sides of the vessel. 
7. Switch off.
8. Heat ghee and temper with ingredients given for the same. 
9. Pour it into the rasam and mix .

Your home will be filled with the aroma of this simple yet delicious Jeeraga Rasam. 


Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom








Sunday, June 3, 2018

Tava Somasi | Vegetable Tava Somasi Recipe


Hi Supermoms,

New school session starts in the second week of June in many parts of India . Though it brings a lot of relief to mothers, it also poses the challenge of 'lunch box/tiffin box' packing . To ease your work and bring in some excitement, I am going to share another tasty, wholesome and 'easy to pack and eat' snack, appealing to your younger ones. 

They are perfect for packing in a tiffin box and taste amazing even when eaten cold. During my recent trip to Bangalore, I had the chance to spend time with my friend Radha and while discussing about new tiffin box ideas, she shared a super hit recipe from her kitchen. 

Radha in her well organised kitchen
Radha always makes it a point to pack a lot of nutrients in her son's tiffin box in the most creative ways. I always learn a lot from her and I am so thrilled to share this recipe with you all. She asked me to name the dish and I am going to call it 'Tava Somasi'. Well, you can decide the filling of your choice, depending on the vegetables available in your pantry that day. I have used corn, spinach and colourful bell peppers. 

Tava Somasi | Vegetable Tava Somasi Recipe :

Preparation time : 10 minutes
Cooking time : 20 minutes
Serves : 2
1 cup = 250 ml cup 

Ingredients :

2 cups whole wheat flour
water ( adjust)
1/4 cup sweet corn
1/2 cup spinach ( washed and finely chopped)
1 cup mixed bell peppers ( finely chopped)
2 tablespoons cheese spread ( You can use cheese of your choice , grated cheese will work great )
1 teaspoon mixed  spices ( I used Italian dry spices , you can use spice and herbs  of your choice)
salt to taste 
1 tablespoon ghee or butter

Method :

1. Prepare the dough just like the way you make chapathi or phulka , cover and rest till the filling is ready
2. To make the filling, heat a kadai/small wok with 1 teaspoon oil or ghee.
3. Add all the vegetables and salt.
4. Allow it to cook over low flame till they are done. 
Chef tip : With the vegetables mentioned, the cooking time takes hardly 7-8 minutes over medium flame.
5. Add the spices and switch off.
6. Transfer it to a bowl and add the cheese and mix well.
7. To make the Somasi, dust the working counter with flour.
8. Divide the dough into small portions.
9. Roll them in the shape of a ball.
10. Gently press and roll them out into a small circle .
11. Spoon the filling onto one side of the circle.
12. Fold the circle into half .
Chef tip : You can dip your finger in water and spread it on the corner of the circle. Make sure not to wet it too much. 
13. Press the edges to seal them completely.
14. You can use a fork to seal and also make small fork impressions on the somasi so that there will be space for air to escape. 
15. Heat a tava .
16. Brush ghee or oil uniformly.
17. Place the shaped somasi on the tava and cook on both sides till they are cooked.
Chef tip : For the centre portion , you have to manually lift the somasi and cook on the side that does not touch the tava.
18. Repeat the same process for the remaining dough.


Your delicious Tava Somasi is now ready to be packed in tiffin box. 


For hundreds of my lunch box ideas click here

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom











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