Mar 31, 2012 7 comments:

Papaya Smoothie

In no time Madness of March is over, I hope you are all done with your kids Exams Crush. Luckily my kids don't have the concept of final exams yet as they are still little. The sudden hot sun, crazy schedule at work, and the bash of festivals and witnessing some wedding events in March made it hectic and fun for me. Now the month of April begins with more challenges. As keeping the kids safe in this summer and entertaining and keeping them busy in their Holidays time. Here in Bangalore, the schools are closed by March 30th and it is holidays time for kids and challenging for working parents to find the ways and events to keep it fun and entertaining. 

Papaya Smoothie
I think in India we lost the concept of Spring  in seasons, as March already was like summer, And I heard it is going to be the rough summer here this year.  So I am planning to to make and write about summer spirit dishes or beverages in this month. My tip for you, keep your kids also involved while you cook or make healthy dishes so that they will know the importance of healthy eating and it is fun for them to eat what they make. With out any due, let me welcome this month Hot Summer, April with this Cool and Healthy Beverage, Papaya Smoothie!!!

Papaya - 1cup ( cubed and ripe)
Milk - 1 cup
Yogurt - 1/2 cup
Ice Cream - 1/2 cup (vanilla)
Honey - 1 Tbsp
Saffron - 1 tsp
Warm Milk - 1 Tbsp

1. Add Safforn in Warm milk and keep it aside.
2. Blend Papaya and Milk in the blender.
3. Then add, Yogurt, Ice Cream and Honey and blend it once until all the ingredients blends very well.
4. Now transfer this to cups or tumblers add 1 tsp of saffornish milk on top.
5. Chili it until serve it.
Take a Close Peek ..:-)
I like papaya until it becomes too ripe, as we have Papaya tree in the garden here, it has lot of yield. And  I am ending up with lot of ripen papayas even after distributing them to my neighbors. The ripe papaya has some strong smell which makes me turn away to them, and I found this is the best way to eat all those ripe papayas as the safforn avoids that smell and adds nice flavor to it. VJ loves the papaya as ti is, this didn't excite him much. That's even better for me, now i can have his portion as well ;-).

linking this to MizHelen's Full Plate Thursday 

Happy Smoothying in this Hot Summer,

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Mar 27, 2012 16 comments:

Palak Paneer ( Step by Step)

Usually I am not a big fan of Paneer recipes, as Paneer (Cottage Cheese), tastes bland by itself and I used to think it is fatty. But recently when i came to know about the nutritional values that it has, it is not only a good fat but also is a good protein source for vegetarians. When I was a kid Whenever we go out for dinner, My mom used to always order Pulkas along with the Palak Paneer as she is a vegetarian. I haven't realized the greatness of this combination until I have mastered this signature recipe and making it quite frequently. This rich creamy spinach gravy is not spicy but flavorful, and when the paneer gets simmered in this, it tastes Exotic and not bland. Here are the Step-by-Step instructions to make it easier for you, Enjoy!

Palak Panner
Chopped Onions - 1 cup
Chopped Tomato - 1 cup
cubed Panner -  1 Cup
Spinach ( Palak) - 4 cups
ginger garlic paste - 1 Tbsp
cumin seeds - 1 tsp
chopped garlic - 1 Tbsp
salt - 2 tsp
Red Chili Powder - 2 tsp
coriander powder - 1 tsp
cumin powder - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric poeder - 1 tsp
cinnamon - 2 flakes
cardamom - 1
clove - 2
Oil - 1 Tbsp


First Boil 3 Cups of water and add the spinach to it. Do not close the lid. After 5 min, turn off the heat drain the spinach and let it cool and make it into a paste using blender or mixie. 

Take the non stick pan and heat the oil. Once the oil is hot add the Cinnamon, cardamom, clove, cumin seeds.

Add Chopped Onions and garlic and saute for 3 min. 

Add Ginger Garlic Paste and wait until the oil separatesNow add turmeric powder and salt. Mix well. 

Add Tomatoes. Let it cook with onions for 2 min. 

Add Red Chili Powder, Coriander Powder and Cumin Powder. Mix it very well. 

Now add the spinach puree (palak paste) to the pan. 

and let it simmer by cooking it on low heat. so that all the flavors and spices will sink in. 

Taste and adjust all the seasonings and now add the paneer cubes.  

Now simmer for few minutes and let paneer get coated with all these spices.

Ta da! your restaurant stylish (or even better than restaurant) Palak Panner is ready now. Transfer this into a bowl and garnish it with red onions.  

Serve with Chapathi/Roti/Pulka and now dig in. To accompany this creamy taste you can add sliced red onion rings sprinkled with lime juice on top.

  • Cooking the spinach gravy on low will add good taste to this dish.
  • At the end you can add some fresh cream for creamy taste. 
  • go moderate with your salt, as spinach is already salty by nature.
  • Boiling the spinach with out the lid will make to retain it's green color. That is the reason  for this beautiful  and vibrant green color. If you over cook or close the lid, your spinach will lose color and it may turn into little black in the gravy.
linking this to following events
Nupur's For u Mum event, Resh's comfort Food Event, Aayesha's Healthy Morsels event, Rosh's Gimme Green Event,
Radhika's Let's Cook Greens Event Spring Seasonal Foods @ Srav's Culinary Concepts

-Take care until we meet here again

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Mar 22, 2012 3 comments:

Vankaya Pachi Pulusu / Roasted Eggplant Stew

Vankaya Pachi Pulusu / Roasted Eggplant Stew
First of all let me wish all my readers Happy Ugadi (నందన నామ సంవత్సర శుభాకాంక్షలు).  Hope you are celebrating this Telugu New Year festival with all the goodness of Mamidi Aakulu (Mango Leaves), Vepa Puvvu (Neem Flowers), Arati Aaakulu (Banana Leaves),  Ugadi Pachadi , and with Festive Meal. Last year I  wrote up How to make Ugadi Pachadi and the specialty of this Telugu Festival.  As this is my favorite festival and I celebrate this with my heart where ever I am.   This year being in India,  Waking up early, get the Mango Leaves during my morning walk,  getting the first pick of Raw Mangoes from the market and plucking the Fresh Neem Flowers on the Tree from our neighbors backyard made it even more special.  (In Dallas, I used to get the dry Neem flowers from Indian Stores for Ugadi Pachadi.).

While celebrating Ugadi, today I am featuring a south indian special dish, that is made with Eggplant / Vankaya.   and known as Vankaya Pachi Pulusu / Roasted Eggplant Stew. You can make this with out the egg plant also.  But I felt like addition of roasted egg plant gives a nice authentic taste. As name says, this a raw stew, not boiled but made with raw tamarind juice with the addition of tempering.  And this is very good during summer as it makes your tummy cool, with out missing any flavors in your meal.  With out any due, let me share the recipe here!!

Egg plant - 1 medium
Onion - 1 medium
Green Chili - 1 or 2
Tamarind  - 1  Tbsp or small lemon size
salt - 1 tsp
red chili flakes - 1 tsp


Ingredients for Tempering


  1. First Roast the Eggplant on the Flame on the stove. Or you can grill it for the best taste, if you have grill handy.
  2. And then peel all the roasted skin. (it comes very easily, if it is perfectly done). and take away the stem or trim the edge and let it cool.   
  3. Take 1/2 cup of water and add tamarind and microwave it on high for 1 min.  Let it cool, and extract the tamarind juice or thick paste out of it.
  4. Mash the roasted egg plant and take it into a bowl.
  5. Add salt, chopped onions, chopped green chili, red chili flakes and mix it very well. 
  6. Add the tamarind paste to the bowl and mix it very well and add 1/2 cup of water.
  7. Now taste and  adjust the seasonings accordingly. For your desired consistency add some more water as you needed. Top it with Tempering. That is it, it is ready to be served now.

You have to eat this with White Rice to get all the flavors in it. After eating this you will know, why it makes your cool... Usually we make this stew in the Summer.

Hope you had your Ugadi at your best, Wishing you one more time that, this New Year will bring wealth and prosperity to your and your family.

linking this recipe to ONLY South Indian Recipes event by Pari

Enjoy all those festive dishes.... until we meet here again.

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Mar 19, 2012 10 comments:

Choco Nutty Bars ( No Bake and No Egg)

When It comes to meeting the Team whether it is in Dallas or Bangalore, It does not stop me from indulging them with treats in order to appreciate team's efforts towards our product, more over I believe Food always brings people together and adds little fun to the team. and When it is Homemade, it's really special for them. :-) As my team has sweet tooth (unlike me),  I wanted to make something sweet and chocolaty, but I also wanted it to be quick. Oh Boy, That's the real challenge for me then! At that time, Aarathi's No Bake Choco Bars recipe comes to my rescue. I have made some variations by adding Walnuts to the original recipe. Here is the recipe, Enjoy!

Can you believe, our day to day tea time companion Mary Biscuits is the Main Ingredient in this!!!!

Condensed Milk - 400 g ( 1 can)
Butter - 100 g
Cocoa Powder ( Unsweetened) - 4 Tbsp
Vanilla Essence - 2 tsp
Walnuts ((chopped)) - 1/2 cup
Mary Biscuits - 30


  1. First break the biscuits roughly and grind them into rough textured powder. 
  2. Take a Non-stick pan and Add the Butter, Condensed Milk, Cocoa Powder and Vanilla Essence.
  3. Heat the Pan Stove with medium heat, stir it until the butter melts completely. and Mix it very well.
  4. Take it off from heat and add the Biscuit Mixture and Walnuts. mix it well so that it forms like a sticky dough.
  5. Take a Pan and place Parchment Paper or Aluminium foil. Spread this dough evenly in the pan.
  6. Chill it in the Fridge and wait patiently for an hour or two.
  7. Take it out and cut into squares, serve with ice cream or as it is.
This has become my son's after school snack routine, these days. After making this once, I kept these ingredients handy in the pantry to serve this quick and rich dessert for those unexpected Guests. Isn't that something!!!  

Wait a sec, What is that big scream from my living room, Oh, Did we just won the India - Pakistan Cricket Match?  Hurray, One more excuse to celebrate and indulge with food..... ;-)  Come Here Again, to check with which Desert We celebrate this.... :-)

  • If my US friends are wondering about Biscuits,  in India they are nothing but Crackers. You can use Graham Crackers instead of Mary Biscuits in this recipe.
  • You have to heat the milk until the butter melts completely and boils little bit. Otherwise your supposed be sticky dough will be little runny. 
linking this to Kavi's No Sugar and No flour Desserts event

Happy ChocolatyNutting... Until we meet here...

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Mar 17, 2012 12 comments:

Guava Chutney

By looking at the title you must be confused, or wondering about my absent mind, instead of Guava Fruit Juice did i made the Chutney!!!!!! Don't worry, I am completely in my senses, what you saw is right. :-) There is a saying that if you add proper portions of Salt and Spices, even the Grass can be a new Dish. I think the Chef's in India are really turning Creative to make the above statement true. As you may know, Obviously this is not my Idea, but Recently When I went for wedding, I have witnessed this new Chutney made with this Wonderful Tropical Fruit Guava.  When they are serving, this chutney, I have asked several times 'Is this really made with Guava?' or did i heard it wrong. (Who can imagine, you can make a chutney with this rare fruit.) After they confirmed, I have tasted it and surprised that it is very tasty and could not make it out that it made with a fruit. So I remembered all the flavors then to bring this to my blog readers. After coming home experimented this Chutney in my kitchen and presenting it for you, Today. This recipe is same as any other chutney recipe, you have to be just bold enough to use the Guava here. :-) Here is the recipe,Enjoy!

Guava Chutney

Guava - 2 small
garlic - 4 cloves
cumin seeds - 1 tsp
green chili - 2
tamarind - 1 Tbsp
Oil - 1 tbsp
sugar - 1 tsp
lime juice or vinegar - 1 tsp
salt - 1 tsp ( according to your taste)


Tempering Ingredients

1. Cut the stems of guava on top and bottom , Wash and pat dry them
2. Cut into 4 slices and remove the seeds part. and cut the wedges into small cubes.
3. Heat oil in the non stick pan, add cumin seeds.
4. followed by garlic, green chili and tamarind.
5. Add the guava cubes to pan and fry it for 3 min.
6. Add the Sugar and simmer for 1 more min.
7. Let this mixture cool and grind all the ingredients in the mixie along with salt and lime juice. ( use water little as needed)
9. Now Take it into a serving bowl and top with Tempering.

To get the Goodness of this, Serve this over Hot White Rice with Ghee. Hmmm Yum, Yum...


  • Sugar and Lime Juice will remove the tartness of Guava.
  • You have to pick the Raw Guava ( not the ripe one)
  • The texture of this chutney will be little rough compare to other chutneys. This feels similar to Chintakaya Pachadi (Raw Tamarind Chutney).
  • If you use pink Guavas, you will light pink color in your chutney. ( But i prefer white Guavas for this)

Take Care until next time we meet here..

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Scrambled Cauliflower (Step - by - Step)

You must have heard Scrambled Egg Recipes before, but have you heard of Scrambled Cauliflower!! Well, you have heard it now. :-).  Today I am featuring a easy peasy recipe with the cauliflower, this recipe is perfect when you are in rush times as it takes only 15 minutes or less to prepare. And this is perfect for any husbands or bachelors to prepare as this has only less than 5 Ingredients. So Husbands, stop giving excuses and make this dish in no time and put a smile on your dear loving wife!!!! :-) As I have time, I was able to take pictures of the details.... Here it is pictorial step - by - step trail for you, Enjoy!
Scrambled Cauliflower
Cauliflower - 1 medium
Onion - 1
Green Chili - 1
Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp
Salt - 2 tsp
Turmeric - 1/2 tsp
Oil - 1 Tbsp
Spring Onions - 1 Tbsp
Grate the Cauliflower. Add 1 tsp salt and microwave it on high for 2 min.

Heat the Oil in the Non Stick Pan.

Once the oil is hot add the cumin seeds.

Add Chopped Onions and Green Chili.

After sauteing 1 min, Add turmeric and remaining salt.

Mix it very well, After 1 min add the Grated Cauliflower.

Mix it well with spices

...and fry it on high for 2 min. 

Add spring onions and fry it for 1 more min.

Now switch off the stove and transfer it to bowl and Garnish with some more spring onions.

See so simple, right. You are done with a healthy and colorful curry in less than 15 minutes.

Serving Tips:

  • You can serve this with white rice on any Day. But I liked it with Rotis and Have stuffed it in Dosas. 
  • You can put this as layer on your sandwiches or it gets perfectly rolled into your rolls.

this recipe goes to following events..
Krithi's Serve it - Stir Fried event

Until we meet here again..Have Fun in the Kitchen,

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Mar 4, 2012 7 comments:

Dum Aloo Methi Rice

If I have to cook Methi ( Fenugreek) Leaves, other than Dal, Aloo Methi is one quite common dish in my kitchen. Not sure, if Potato hides the bitterness of Methi or Methi enhances the taste of Potato, but the combination is always awesome. Today I have bought these small, cute round baby potatoes, and then I had to darn the experimental hat to come up with something innovative. Usually Dum Aloo is the spicy and tangy curry that you can make with these baby potatoes. By following the same spices that used in Dum Aloo,  and with the addition of methi leaves, Today this 'Dum Aloo Methi Rice' Dish has happened . Check it out and Here is the Recipe...

Dum Aloo Methi Rice

Baby Potatoes -  8
Methi Leaves - 1 cup
Cooked Rice - 4 cups

For Marination:
Yogurt - 1/2 cup
Curry Powder - 2 tsp
salt - 1 tsp
Red Chili Powder - 1 tsp

Oil - 1 tbsp
salt - 2 tsp
black pepper - 1 tsp
ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
Red chili - 1
cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Clove - 2
cinnamon - 1 stick
cardamon - 1
green chili - 2
Red Onion - 1 medium

Preparatory Steps:

  • Boil the Baby potatoes until they are soft. You can pressure cook for up to 1 whistle for medium soft.
  • If they are Red potatoes i usually leave the skin, as Potato skin has good nutrition values.
  • Separate the Methi leaves from stems, wash and drain them.


  1. First make slight slits to boiled baby potatoes. 
  2. Take yogurt in wide bowl, mix in Curry Powder, salt and Red Chili Powder. and add the baby potatoes and marinate them for 30 min. 
  3. Take a non stick pan, add Oil. Once the oil is hot, add red chilies, cumin seeds, clove, cinnamon, cardamom. 
  4. After 1 min, Add  ginger garlic paste, followed by green chili and chopped onions.  
  5. Saute Onions for 2 min, Add 1 tsp salt and black pepper. then, Add the Methi ( fenugreek) leaves. 
  6. Once the leaves wilted, add the marinated potatoes to the pan. Mix it well until all the spices are well coated. 
  7. Now add the cooked rice to the pan. Add remaining salt and Mix the rice together with vegetables. ( do it gently so that potatoes won't get mashed). Taste and adjust all the seasonings. 

Transfer to Serving Bowl and Hit that party with your new Dish. :-)


  • As the Yogurt and Potato softens all the spices, you can serve this rice as it is ( with out any side or Raita).
  • If you don't have curry powder handy, you can add 1 tsp of turmeric powder, 1 tsp of coriander powder and 1/2 tsp of cumin powder.

Take care until we meet here again
Ba Bye


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