Category Archives: Curry house

Banana stem salad | Banana stem Kosambari | Banana stem Upkari | Gabbo recipes Konkani

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There was a time when I used to make only one or two curries for our matta rice meals. Since I cook the matta rice very soft like a gruel, a side dish would be sufficient to enjoy a simple dinner. Don’t know when I started cooking more, maybe lockdown effect πŸ˜„ or to deviate my mind πŸ˜… or listen to more music 😍, I now make atleast 3 to 4 varieties of curries daily. It makes me very happy to see the thali with different colours and nutrients too.❀️

My son is also a huge fan of his plate filled with curries and says, “Amma, Wow 😍” when I bring his meal to feed him. I am glad that this boy needs no extra efforts to make him eat veggies. He already loves vegetables (even traditional ones) so much that I am sure he was a farmer in his past life and a Konkani for sure. πŸ˜…

As for me, due to him, I too have learned to like these vegetables which I did not like as a kid (Amma, true na? πŸ˜‚). So, as a mother, at 31 year old, I am learning healthy eating habits from my 2.5 year old son ( how cool is that πŸ˜„). But honestly, not only this, if I have learned to be happy at the simplest things, it is through my kids, if I have learned to enjoy life with whatever we have, it is through them. Even if I scold them, they still come back to me with the same amount of love and hug me saying, “Love you, Amma”. That forgiving, non judging, free thinking, trusting nature of kids and the innocence, which gets lost as we grow up, have to be learned from kids. Maybe that’s what is a part of the circle of life. ❀️

So, on this thoughtful note, sharing the recipes with Banana stem. Hope you all like it. Happy and healthy cooking!

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

Banana stem (inner pith)/ Gabbo as available {mine was 35 cm in length}

For Kosambari:

1/4 Cup Moong dal

1 Cup finely chopped Banana stem

3 Green chillies

2 Tbsp Coriander leaves

2 Tbsp grated Coconut

A pinch of Hing/ Asafoetida

1 tsp Oil, 1 tsp Mustard seeds, A sprig of Curry leaves – for seasoning

Lemon juice from 1 Indian lemon for garnish

Salt to taste

For Salad:

1 Cup finely chopped Banana stem

1 Cup Curd / Yogurt

2 Green chillies

Salt to taste

1 tsp Oil or ghee, 1 tsp Mustard seeds, 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds, A sprig of Curry leaves – for seasoning

Step by step recipe:

1. First wash well and soak the moong dal in enough water and keep aside till use. This is for the kosambari.

2. Next, wash the Banana pith well. I get the outer parts of the stem already removed. So I don’t have pictures of how to remove that. Please check YouTube videos on how to use banana stem if using for the first time. Cut into roundels while removing any fibres which may come out. Immediately put in a vessel filled with water as shown.

3. Now finely chop these roundels and add little to a bowl for the salad. Also add finely chopped green chillies.

4. Now add curd and salt. Mix well.

5. Season oil or ghee by spluttering mustard seeds and adding cumin seeds and curry leaves. Pour this seasoning over the salad. Mix well. Salad is ready.

6. For the Kosambari, now again finely chop the banana stem and add to the soaked, drained moong dal along with green chillies and coriander leaves.

7. Now add coconut along with the seasoning of mustard seeds and curry leaves in oil.

8. Add lemon juice and salt. Mix well. Kosambari is ready.

9. For the Gabbe Upkari, cut the rest of the Banana stem into long pieces. Heat about 2 tsp Oil in a pan. Add a pinch of Hing along with 3 to 4 broken red chillies and the chopped Banana stem pieces with salt and little water. Cover and cook till the stem pieces turn soft. Garnish with grated Coconut and mix well.

10. Serve the Banana stem salad, Banana stem Kosambari and Upkari with rice meals.

Notes:

* I also make a simple sambar along with these three dishes as it makes a great combination and a very wholesome meal.

* Remember to remove the outer parts of the Banana stem if you have the stem with outer parts intact. Check YouTube videos on how to use Banana stem. I get it with the innermost pith in my nearest supermarket.

* While chopping the pith, you will get some fibres come out. Discard it.

* Keep the chopped pieces in plain water or tumeric water till use, else the pieces turn black very quickly.

* Don’t worry about using banana stem without cooking it in salad and Kosambari. It can be had raw and tastes really good too. Just chop it very finely.

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Amma’s Carrot Upkari | with ground masala

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This recipe of carrot upkari is simple but the blog is very special as I am posting it on my Amma‘s birthday today. Since I am not with her, this post is my gift for her, my little way of showing my love to make her feel special (the least I can do ❀️). Hope you like it Amma. 😍

Amma and Aanu (my dad) got married in March 1989 and I was born in December the same year. So Amma always says that I am the greatest gift from God as I came into her life so quickly. As for me, her love made me so close and attached to her that even today, she’s the one I am closest to, in my life. ❀️

Amma was a working woman and I am amazed at how well she used to manage both work and home together. She used to cook very lovingly for me and my brother, which made the food taste so delicious that I still remember the flavours and aroma of her dishes (Maa ke haath ka jadoo ❀️).

These are some of my favorites from what she used to make and each of these dishes carry a special memory of Amma in it. ❀️

The moong curry with chapatis which I used to take in my college lunch box, a favorite among my friends too.. ❀️

The eggless Tomato omelette which Amma used to make with the most pieces of tomato in my omelette (out of extra love for me 😍).. ❀️

The panpolos with tomato chutney which Amma made during my pregnancy craving, not one or two but more than 15 at a time, while using her walker for support.. Can never forget that ever in my life.. ❀️

The piping hot, delicious Alu parathas and carrot pulao which were made during weekends by Amma after we were bored of regular meals.. Her love made it extra tasty for sure. ❀️

Same is with today’s recipe of Carrot Upkari.. Though it’s a very simple dish, Amma made it so well that I used to ask her to make it always.. ❀️

This is a collage of pictures of Amma with me in the first two photos and with my kids in the photos below it. The left side picture is of Amma with my daughter, when she had come here to Qatar and we had taken her to Villagio mall. I captured this moment between the loving grandmother in Amma and her first grandchild, to be treasured forever. ❀️ The right side picture is with my son, her second grandchild but not loved any less. This is when he had worn the Krishna costume on Janmashtami. Such a beautiful moment this was, my Shankar Krishna immersed in grandma love. ❀️

As loving a mother Amma is, she is equally my kids’ most loving grandmother too, their moga mamama, as they call her. 😍

I searched for many quotes to describe her, to make a card and found this one apt for her. ❀️

Her beautiful smile is always reassurance for me, that I have her with me, to share my feelings and thoughts, to listen to my woes, to feel happy for my happiness and to pray for me always. ❀️

Amma suffers from muscular dystrophy in her legs since many years and needs wheelchair for movement. But the way she lives her life, happily, filled with devotion to God, music, even doing many household chores while sitting on the wheelchair, without complaining, is commendable and very inspiring for me. Hats off to you, Amma. So proud of you! ❀️

A mother’s love is always exceptional and unconditional. I believe that we can’t be loved by anyone more than our mother can love us. Even if we are far from her, she only wants us to be happy and will always pray for us. Her love is not based on conditions that I should be with her, I should talk to her or even does not expect me to love her as much as she loves me. She just loves truly with all her heart, irrespective of any conditions. ❀️

On this note, here’s wishing you a very Happy Birthday, Amma. May you always be healthy and happy. Love you so much. ❀️❀️❀️❀️❀️❀️❀️❀️

For my readers, excuse me for such a long write-up. But I know you all will also agree that no matter how much we write for our mothers, it’s very less for their love. Anyhow, hope you all will try this recipe and remember my Amma when you do. Happy and healthy cooking! ❀️

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

3 Cups peeled and chopped Carrots

1 medium sized Onion

3 to 4 Red chillies (depends on the variety)

6 to 8 Curry leaves

Salt to taste

2 tsp Coconut oil

2 Tbsp grated Coconut for garnish

Step by step recipe:

1. Take chopped onion, red chillies and curry leaves in a mixer.

2. Now add little water and grind to a smooth paste.

3. Heat oil in a pan and add the ground paste. Fry for couple of minutes till the raw smell of onion goes away.

4. Now add chopped carrots and salt. Mix well. Add little water, cover and cook till the carrots turn soft.

5. The mixture turns dry on cooking as all the water is absorbed. Remove from flame. Garnish with grated Coconut. Serve with rice meals.

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Notes:

* The number of red chillies depends on the variety of chillies you have. Since carrots are sweet, the masala needs to be spicy to make the curry spicy too.

* Remember to fry the ground paste well in oil. Else there will a raw smell of onions in the curry.

* Curry leaves adds a wonderful aroma and flavour. So don’t skip it.

* Here are the other recipes by Amma which I have added on the blog:

# Amma’s Moong curry with freshly ground masala

# Amma’s Carrot Pulao

# Amma’s Tomato Chutney and Panpolos

# Amma’s Alu Paratha

# Amma’s Eggless Tomato Omelette

Vegetable Paneer Chilly | Broccoli stir fry | Kid friendly recipes with Broccoli

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Broccoli is not something I grew up eating. In fact, don’t remember even seeing this vegetable till few years back (Talk about being desi πŸ˜…). In the winter months here in Qatar, which is between November and March, there opens a Mahaseel festival which sells varieties of flowers, indoor/outdoor plants and also fresh vegetables grown in different Qatari local farms. Inspite of the quality of the veggies being so good, the rate is surprisingly very cheap. I found this “pretty green vegetable similar to cauliflower” (exactly what was in my mind πŸ˜‚) in the festival and could not resist buying it. That started my love for Broccoli and my kids too love it so much now. ❀️

The Mahaseel festival is a treat to the eyes for flower lovers and I want to share a picture which I clicked when we went there in December 2019. Look at the beauties. 😍😍

This reminds me of my favorite song from the movie Silsila, Ye kahaan aa gaye hum.. That song too has been shot in midst of floral heaven. Admire how beautifully it has been picturized and such an eternal love song too. ❀️❀️

For me, merely looking at greenery, lush trees, mountains, fields, flowers, birds chirping, cows grazing, waves of the river, streams of water in a waterfall, early morning dewdrops on leaves, the heavenly aroma of the freshly wet soil in the first rain and so many similar such experiences brings so much unexplainable joy. ❀️ I don’t know about you all, but being with nature makes me feel so alive and refreshes me a lot. If I could, I would love to live atop a mountain, far away from the city, embracing nature in it’s purest form (One among my dreams in life. ❀️)

Among these, there is also the wonderful feel of cooking with freshly plucked vegetables. 😍 Now, since a year, these locally grown vegetables like Broccoli and cucumber are available in our nearby supermarket. It’s a boon since we can’t travel all the way to the Mahaseel festival due to the Covid situation.

My kids love these two ways of Broccoli that I make and they eat it as it is even without rice. Sharing it so that you can try for your family too. Hope you all try and love it too. Happy and healthy cooking! ❀️

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

For Broccoli stir fry:

2 Cups Broccoli florets
1 tsp Oil
A pinch of Pepper powder
Salt to taste

For Vegetable Paneer Chilly:

1 Cup Broccoli florets

1 Cup diced Carrots

1 Cup Paneer cubes

1/2 a medium sized Capsicum, cubed

1 medium sized Onion, cubed

3 Garlic cloves, finely chopped

3 to 4 Green chillies

2 Tbsp Tomato ketchup

2 tsp Chilli sauce

1 tsp Soya sauce

Pepper powder to taste

Salt to taste

1 tsp Vinegar

Finely chopped coriander leaves

Step by step recipe:

1. For Broccoli stir fry, take bite size broccoli florets in a bowl and wash it well. Drain and keep it ready.

2. Heat oil in a pan and add the broccoli florets. Also add salt and pepper. Fry on high flame for few seconds. Cover and cook on medium flame till the florets turn soft. Sprinkle water only if needed. You are done!

3. For Vegetable Paneer Chilly, take Broccoli florets, diced Carrots and cubed capsicum in a bowl.

4. In a pan, heat oil and fry the green chillies and garlic first. Then add cubed onions and fry till it turns translucent.

5. Now add the veggies along with Paneer and fry for few seconds.

6. Add very little water and cook till the veggies turn soft but don’t overcook them. Now add ketchup, chilli sauce, soya sauce, salt and pepper. Mix well and cook for 5 mins.

7. Remove and add vinegar. Mix well adding coriander leaves.

Serve both the Broccoli stir fry and Vegetable Paneer Chilly with fried rice or any variety rice or meals.

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Notes:

* I usually make easy Schezwan fried rice with this. You can check the recipe here.

* Skip Paneer if you don’t like it. Makes regular vegetable chilly.

* You can make it as a gravy if you want. Just add more ketchup and water. For a thicker gravy, add corn flour mixed in water to the gravy. It will make it very thick. I love this dry version though.

* The broccoli stir fry makes for a great snack for kids. My kids dip it it ketchup and eat by themselves. Great finger food for toddlers as well.

Amma’s Moong curry (with freshly ground masala)

All of us have a special kind of liking towards our mother’s cooking and I am sure you all will agree that no matter which Masterchef cooks for us, our Amma’s food is the best. Why not, as she makes everything with a secret ingredient in it – Love. ❀️

My Amma too used to cook so well and the flavours of all her dishes are still in my taste buds. This moong curry was one among them and I used to take it with puris in my lunch box during my school/ college days. My friends used to love it too and I used to take extra boxes of it for them as well. The precious memory of those days is forever etched in my heart and I remember it each time I make this curry. ❀️

Now Amma can’t cook like before as she suffers from muscular dystrophy in her legs. Although she’s strong most of the days and remains happily engaged all day, there are times when she falls into self doubting sadness and I have to convince her my best that she is still very much loved and an important part of our lives. Right now, she’s going through a difficult phase and this post of mine is to cheer her up in my little way, by adding her recipe on my blog.

Amma, this is for you. ❀️ I am coming in few months to make this curry for you and you have to tell me if it tastes as good as yours or not. 😍 Loads of love to you Amma. 😘 Please be happy always as that is what makes me happy too. ❀️ Sharing some words for you which I found as best to describe our love for each other. Hope it cheers you up. 😍

Now to Amma’s recipe. Hope you all try her way of moong curry too. Tastes amazing with puris, chapatis or even with rice. Happy and healthy cooking!

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

1 Cup dried whole green gram/ whole moong

1 Tbsp Oil

2 tsp Red chilli powder or to taste

Salt to taste

For the ground paste:

1/4 Cup Coconut (freshly grated or desiccated)

6 to 8 sprigs of Coriander leaves

1/2 a large Tomato

1 small sized Onion

2 Cloves

1 Cardamom

1 small piece of star anise

1/2 tsp Cumin seeds or Jeera

1/4 tsp Turmeric powder

Step by step recipe:

1. Soak whole moong in atleast thrice the amount of water overnight or for 6 to 8 hours. When soaked, drain the water. Add fresh water enough to soak it in a pressure cooker and cook until soft. Takes 3 to 4 whistles on high in my electric stove top. Might vary depending on your cooking range.

2. Add ingredients to grind in a mixer.

3. Grind adding about 1/4 Cup water or as needed to a smooth paste. Now heat oil in a pan and add the paste. Also add red chilli powder and cook till the raw smell goes away. (About 5 mins and this paste splatters. So be careful and mix continually.)

4. Now add the cooked moong and salt. Bring it to boil and cook for 5 to 8 mins. Adjust consistency of the gravy.

5. Serve hot with Puris, Chapatis or rice meals.

Notes:

* The gravy thickens when kept at room temperature as moong absorbs a lot of water. So if serving later, add water that time to adjust gravy consistency.

* Star anise and coriander leaves make this masala very aromatic. So don’t skip it.

* The masala splatters while cooking. So be careful while sauteing.

* I also sprout moong and make this same curry.

* You can also check my mother’s other three recipes –

# Amma’s Carrot Pulao

# Amma’s Tomato Chutney

# Amma’s Alu Paratha

Paneer Butter Masala | No Onion No Garlic easy recipe | Ready within 20 mins

Ideally I should be sleeping now as my kids have finally slept after chattering and more chattering (just like me 😁) but I decided to finish writing this (blog baby calls ❀️). Had planned to give it a break, actually fully from social media as I am someone who needs quiet time to focus inwards (the other side of me πŸ˜„) but that went for a toss as I got many beautiful feedbacks from my near and dear ones. So I had to post it and hence was active on my Facebook page (perfect example of how life never goes as per my plans 😬).

But I did listen to a lot of songs on repeat from Sanam and Maadhyam bands (my latest favourites ❀️❀️). The meaningful lyrics, combined with the singers’ soulful voices soothes me so much that I wonder what my life would have been without music. It’s as important as air and water for me (I know I am going overboard but that’s the truth 😁). Don’t know if anyone can understand this but once you fall in love with music, you just fall crazily and there’s no going back. 🎢❀️

That’s why I guess it’s called “falling” in love.. We slowly fall, without our control and by the time we know it, we have already fallen quite deeply into it.. ❀️ (sometimes there’s no way out and you don’t want to come out either 😍) – proof of my craziness πŸ˜…

Now coming back to today’s post before I lose my focus in my chatter (night time gives me ample time to think and write πŸ˜„), this combination is what I regularly make especially on days when we are fasting and don’t consume onion/garlic. The paneer butter masala comes out so delicious that you can never say it is a Satvik one. I make it only this way now and it can really beat restaurant ones anyday for sure (not exaggerating. Try it to know the magic 😍)

Hope you all try this and love it. Happy and healthy cooking! ❀️

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

200 grams Paneer cubes

1 Tbsp Butter or Ghee

1 Bay leaf

1/4 tsp Turmeric powder

1/2 tsp Coriander powder

1/2 tsp Cumin powder

1 tsp Red chilli powder or to taste

1 tsp Shahi Paneer Masala (I use catch brand) *substitute with any Garam masala powder of your choice

Salt to taste

2 Tbsp Milk

3 Tbsp Coriander leaves to garnish, finely chopped

To grind to paste:

2 to 3 medium sized Ripe Tomatoes

1 inch Ginger piece

2 Cloves

1 Cardamom

Step by step recipe:

1. Grind tomatoes, ginger, cloves and cardamom with about 1/4 Cup water to a smooth paste. Heat butter in a pan and add bay leaf along with the ground paste.

2. Allow it to cook, sauteing in between till the mixture turns thick (takes about 10 mins) and leaves the sides of the pan. Now add all the masala powders and salt.

3. Mix well. Now add milk and bring to a boil. Also add paneer cubes and cook for about 5 mins till paneer turns soft.

The colour looks orangy due to my kitchen lights and my mobile camera clarity. It comes out as shown in the main picture which was captured in daylight.

4. Remove from flame and garnish with coriander leaves. Mix well. Serve with rotis, rice or pulav.

Notes:

* I serve this with Peas Pulav. For peas pulav, heat 1 Tbsp ghee in a pan. Add bay leaf. Add washed and drained 1 Cup Rice along with about 1/2 Cup frozen peas and salt. Add water and cook till the rice turns soft yet firm. Amount of water depends on the variety of your rice. Garnish with coriander leaves.

* Please use ripe and bright red tomatoes for best results as it really makes a difference in the flavour. You can increase the number of tomatoes to 3 if you want to make more of the gravy.

* Cooking the ground paste very well till the rawness completely goes away is the most important step in this recipe.

* You can also add 1 Tbsp Tomato ketchup to the curry along with the masala powders if you are not particular about “no onion no garlic”. I add when we are not fasting and it adds a wonderful flavour to the curry. ( Some brands of ketchup contains garlic paste.)

* I use Catch Shahi Paneer Masala to make this curry as the flavours are great and it does not contain garlic or onion powders. You can use any powder of your choice though.

* Milk can be substituted with cream for a richer version but add cream after cooking paneer and don’t cook much after adding it.

Aloo Corn Bharta with Milk Chapatis

I have had people tell me that social media friendship is fake and what matters is the friends we make in real life. Might be true for many but I feel finally it ends to the vibe you feel with each individual. Some people talk with so much sweetness that it might seem unreal in the beginning but when you get to know the person, you understand that they are really good natured. (my experience and I have been lucky that way to get to know many nice people. ❀️)

In real life, I talk with everyone (being the chatterbox that I am 😁) and have many friends but if I have to choose my close buddies, they are only two (my college besties ❀️❀️). Apart from that, through social media, I have many friends and some people offer so much love, encouragement and support that I have to call them my angels rather than friends. I sometimes wonder if I really deserve this love and it overwhelms me (not used to hearing praises and having had some self worth issues as a child). But these people keep me going, by motivating me with their kind words. So social media friendship can be anything but fake and gives you a chance to know genuine people too. ❀️

One among them is Ashwini Kulkarni whom I got to know through a food group. She had first tried my Masoor dal dosa and messaged me saying how much her daughter loved it. After that, she messages me whenever she makes the dosa and also sends many healthy recipes for me to try (that has been very helpful for me πŸ™).

This Aloo Bhartha is also her recipe which she learnt from Binita Mangaraj but added corn to it making it Aloo Corn Bhartha. I loved the recipe so much that I tried it instantly with soft Milk chapatis (that I recently learnt from Mukherjee Mala). It came out to be such a great combination that we all loved it a lot.

This is one recipe combination that I will be making regularly from on. Huge thanks to Ashwini, Binita and Mukherjee Mala for their recipes. Hope you all try and love it too. Happy and healthy cooking! ❀️

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

4 medium sized Potatoes

1/4 Cup Sweetcorn

1 medium sized Onion

1 medium sized Tomato

2 to 3 Green chillies

1 tsp Red chilli powder

1/2 tsp Coriander powder

1/2 tsp Garam masala powder

1/4 tsp Turmeric powder

Salt to taste

1 Tbsp Oil

1 tsp Cumin seeds

3 Tbsp Coriander leaves, finely chopped

Step by step recipe:

1. Pressure cook the potatoes till soft. Allow to cool. Then peel and grate using grater. You can alternatively mash it.

2. In a pan, heat oil and add cumin seeds. When it changes colour, add green chillies and onions. Fry till onions turn translucent.

3. Now add tomatoes and fry till it cooks and turns very soft. Now add Turmeric powder, coriander powder, red chilli powder and Garam masala powder. Fry for few seconds.

4. Now add the grated potatoes, sweetcorn and salt. Mix well. Add little water and cook for 5 mins on medium flame till sweet corn turns soft. Also add coriander leaves and mix well.

5. Serve hot with rice meals or chapatis/rotis.

Notes:

* I served this with Milk Chapatis. For milk chapatis, just add wheat flour and salt in a bowl. Also add milk and water. Knead to a soft dough and make chapatis as usual. I add about 1/2 Cup milk to 2 Cups flour and add rest water while kneading. Gives really soft chapatis.

* You can mash the potatoes instead of grating but grating gives a good texture to the curry.

* You can make the curry as thick or thin as you like.

* Sweetcorn can be skipped but it gives a good bite to the bharta.

* I used frozen sweet corn which cooks quickly. If your sweet corn variety takes time to cook, boil it separately and add.

Rajma Masala | No Onion No Garlic recipe

My husband’s aunt has asked us to take the “Solah Somavar vrat” which is fasting, without rice items for breakfast and eating only one satvik meal without onion or garlic on Monday for 16 weeks in a row.

Even though I am not someone who believes much in fasting, I am following it to respect her beliefs. My devotion to God is through bhajans and sthothras, along with talking with him believing he is always there with me ( My deep thoughts, example 1 😁).

So, even though I agreed to take the vrat, making no onion no garlic curries especially on days when the husband has to take lunch box is very difficult since he takes only north Indian dishes for his box. And all north Indian curries have loads of onions in it. That’s when I put on my experimental culinary cap and this Satvik Rajma Masala was born! πŸ˜…

The most important reason for me to add this recipe on the blog is my husband loving it like anything. And mind you, he’s not someone who is easy to impress (Precisely why I call him Mr Masterchef πŸ˜‚). Even though he can’t cook much, he criticises my dishes so well that even the tiniest mistake does not escape his taste buds πŸ™„πŸ˜„. That has been very difficult as a newbie married girl leading to many crying sessions πŸ˜‚.

Not now though. Now, it does feel sad sometimes but I go into my silent mode (inside my shellπŸ˜…) and then think that it’s for my own good and that’s how my cooking has improved this much (deep thoughts, example 2 πŸ˜‚). Honestly, that’s the truth too. His straight forward nature is the reason my cooking skills have improved. I have to thank him for that. πŸ™πŸ˜

So here’s sharing the Rajma Masala which my Masterchef judge of a husband loved so much that he found it perfect, much to my happiness. Hope you all try and love it too. Happy and healthy cooking! ❀️

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

1 1/2 Cups Rajma or Kidney beans

2 large Tomatoes

1/2 inch Ginger piece

2 Cloves

A small piece of Cinnamon

2 Tbsp Ghee

1 tsp Cumin seeds

1 Bay leaf

A pinch of Hing or Asafoetida

1/4 tsp Turmeric powder

1 tsp Red chilli powder or to taste

2 tsp Everest Chole Masala (the secret ingredient 😍) *can use any other masala but this is really very flavourful

Salt to taste

Coriander leaves, finely chopped to garnish

Step by step recipe:

1. Soak the Rajma is atleast thrice the water overnight or for 8 hours. Drain the water, add to a pressure cooker and add water only to soak it. Pressure cook till it turns very soft (this step is very important to get a good, thick gravy).

2. Grind tomatoes with ginger, clove and cinnamon to a fine paste.

3. Now heat ghee in a pan, add cumin seeds and allow it brown. Also add Hing and bay leaf. Now add the paste and allow it to cook really well sauteing in between. It should start leaving the sides of the pan.

4. Now add Turmeric powder, red chilli powder and chole masala powder along with salt. Mix well. Now add the cooked Rajma.

5. Cook till it comes together as a thick gravy. Mash the Rajma slightly using the back of the ladle or masher.

6. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with rice. I serve with Jeera rice.

Notes:

* The main part here is cooking the Rajma to really soft that it’s almost buttery kind of soft, should easily mash between your fingers. That gives a thick gravy.

* Also don’t add much water while pressure cooking. Add water only till it soaks the Rajma.

* The number of whistles or the time for pressure cooking depends on your stove and pressure cooker. In my steel cooker and electric stove top, it takes about 6 whistles and then keeping till the cooker cools down completely.

* Everest Chole Masala really gives a good flavour to this curry. You can use any masala powder which you like.

* If you are not fasting, you can add an onion and about 3 to 4 garlic cloves and make paste with ginger, cloves and cinnamon first. Fry that in ghee and cumin seeds first till raw smell goes and then add the tomato paste. Continue the rest like the above curry. It tastes delicious too.

* The gravy thickens as you keep it and tastes best after couple of hours when the Rajma absorbs all the masala.

* For Jeera rice, Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds along with finely chopped green chillies. Add washed rice, salt and water. Cook till the rice turns soft. Garnish with coriander leaves.

Easy Kadala Curry | Kerala style chickpeas curry | Quick lunch box idea

Meet my “friend” (πŸ˜€) who’s my go-to quick fix curry with no much hard work involved yet comes out lip smackingly delicious and a huge favourite of my family – Kadala Curry. I learnt to make it from our Konkani neighbour, Padma akka in Kochi. She used to bring freshly steamed puttu and Kadala Curry with love for us whenever she made it and it tasted so heavenly that I still have that etched in my food memory. ❀️

When I asked her how to make it (imagining it to be a long, laborious recipe), it amazed me as to how simple it really was to make this curry. As is said by someone (don’t know who 😬), Simple is Beautiful ❀️ and in this case delicious too. πŸ˜€

Since then, it is a commonly made curry at my place and the only way I make my chickpeas. I had also shared it in my old blog in 2013 and here is the picture from my archives. (In the same plate too. My favourite plate that is! 😍)

It was my 100th post on that blog which is no longer available now. Feels really sad sometimes that all my hard work went for a toss but console myself that I could start afresh and got this new, better version of the blog. Also, learned a lesson about how not to give my precious blog in anyone’s hands and learnt to handle everything single handedly. That does make me feel good and proud of myself too. 😊

Sharing her easy recipe with all of you. Hope you all try and love it. Makes a wonderful combination with chapatis and a great idea for lunch box. Happy and healthy cooking! ❀️

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

1 Cup dried Black chickpeas/ Kala Chana

1 large sized Onion { or about 6 shallots }

1 medium sized Tomato

1 Tbsp Coriander powder

2 tsp Red chilli powder or to taste

Salt to taste

For seasoning:

1 Tbsp Coconut oil

1 tsp Mustard seeds

A sprig of curry leaves

Step by step recipe:

1. Soak dried chickpeas in atleast double the water overnight or for 8 hours. Drain the water.

2. Add to a pressure cooker along with thinly sliced Onions, finely chopped tomatoes and salt to taste. Pour water till it soaks the chickpeas and cook till it turns soft. { Takes 4 to 5 whistles on high for me on my electric stove top. Varies according to cooking range. }

3. Now open the cooker after it cools down. Keep the cooker on the stove top and add coriander powder along with red chilli powder. Bring to a boil.

4. Mash the chickpeas slightly using the back of a ladle or potato masher to make the gravy turn thick. Boil on medium flame for 5 to 8 mins till the gravy thickens.

5. Heat oil in a pan. Splutter mustard seeds. Add curry leaves and fry till crisp. Pour this seasoning over the curry.

6. Mix well and serve hot with chapatis/appams/ puttu/ dosas.

Notes:

* The main flavour of this curry comes from the coriander powder – red chilli powder combination. So do a taste test and add accordingly as it varies with your brand of both the powders. It may require more or less than I have mentioned.

* Cooking chickpeas till soft is important so that it can be mashed easily and the gravy turns thick.

* Curry leaves in the seasoning makes this curry very aromatic. Don’t skip it.

Brinjal Rava fry on tawa and Upkari

Even though my kids eat almost everything that I cook ( touchwood!), my 5 year old daughter is slightly choosy when it comes to vegetables. So my mommy brains have to work overtime to make her eat some of the veggies. πŸ˜…

Brinjal is a vegetable she won’t eat if I make a regular curry with it (wish I could capture her face and show you all when she hears it’s brinjal curry for dinner πŸ˜‚). I don’t blame her at all as I myself never used to eat any vegetable as a kid except for a few chosen ones like potato, elephant yam and beetroot. So I can totally understand her. πŸ˜ƒ

But once I happened to make these rava fries for a change and she absolutely loved it. So now I make it regularly even as an evening snack. She loves munching on it and I am happy that a healthy vegetable is filling her with nutrition.

Hope you all will try this as well. Happy and healthy cooking! ❀️

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

3 small variety Brinjals or 1 large Purple Brinjal

1/4 tsp Turmeric powder

A pinch of Hing or Asafoetida

Salt to taste

1/4 Cup Rava or Semolina (or as needed)

1 tsp Red chilli powder

Step by step recipe:

1. Wash the brinjals well and chop off the stem. Slice brinjals thinly for the rava fry and finely chop for upkari. Add both into separate bowls of water.

2. Now drain water and add Turmeric powder, Hing and salt. Mix well.

3. In a plate, take rava and mix red chilli powder in it. Roll the brinjal slices one by one over the rava mix.

4. Heat tawa and place these onto the tawa. Drizzle coconut oil while cooking both sides on medium flame till it turns brown in colour and the brinjal turns soft.

5. Serve with rice meals.

Notes:

* For Brinjal Upkari, fry about 4 to 5 finely chopped Garlic pods in oil till it turns brown and add finely chopped brinjal to it. Add red chilli powder and salt. Cook till it turns soft. Don’t add water at all.

* For the rava fry, slice brinjals very thinly. It helps them cook easily and also turns crispy.

* You can make this with any variety of brinjals.

Carrot Kismuri | Konkani style salad

Most days, our dinner is just ukde pej (matta rice cooked soft, eaten with its gruel) and couple of accompaniments to go with it. As much as it may seem from my posts that I cook a lot, our daily meals are very simple and basic.

One of the reason why I don’t (or rather can’t) cook elaborate meals are my kids who hardly give me time in the kitchen (I know it’s hard to believe πŸ˜€). My son pulls my dress (he literally roams around behind me with his fingers clutching my dress πŸ˜‚ #fevicolkajod πŸ˜…) asking me to play football with him while my daughter who loves colouring asks me to draw something for her to colour (One is making me a footballer and the other, an artist 😬😬).

But my time passes very well and both the activities are so good to calm the mind. Never knew drawing is such a stress reliever. And about football, try playing it with a two year old who knows only to laugh when you kick the ball. It’s such precious source of happiness that I can’t thank God enough for blessing me with both of them. ❀️

And on days when they don’t leave me to cook at all, this carrot kismuri or Konkani style salad is our accompaniment for the day. Very quick to make, hardly taking 10 mins and tastes heavenly with pej and some pickle to go with it. The kids love it very much which makes it a perfect side dish for busy days.

Hope you all try and love it too. Happy and healthy cooking!

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

2 large Carrots, peeled and grated (about 2 Cups grated carrots)

3 Green chillies or to taste

1/4 Cup freshly grated Coconut

3 Tbsp finely chopped Coriander leaves

Juice from 1 1/2 Indian lemons

Salt to taste

For seasoning:

1 tsp Coconut oil

1/2 tsp Mustard seeds

A pinch of Hing or asafoetida

One sprig of curry leaves

Step by step recipe:

1. Take the grated carrots in a large mixing bowl. Add grated coconut, green chillies, salt and lemon juice.

2. Now heat oil in a pan and splutter mustard seeds, add Hing and curry leaves. Fry till curry leaves turn crisp. Pour seasoning over the carrots. Mix everything well. Done!

3. It’s really that simple. Serve along with white rice and rasam or matta rice gruel with some pickle. Trust me, it tastes delicious!

Notes:

* You can add finely chopped onions to this too but I skip as after a while, it starts smelling. If made without onions, I can make even couple of hours beforehand and keep at room temperature.

* Some people add a tsp of Urad dal to the seasoning but I prefer only mustard seeds in it.

* If you add soaked moong dal and cucumbers to this, it becomes Kosambari which is another accompaniment that I make regularly. You can check the recipe here.