Sunday, October 7, 2012

Vendakka Kara Kuzhambu/South Indian Ladies Finger/Okra curry - II

I have posted an earlier version of my south indian okra curry here. I was too lazy to refer my recipe and cook so today I tried a slightly different version based on the drumstick kara kuzhambu that I had tried last week. This has a more authentic taste with the sweetness of the fennel/saunf coming through. Do give it a try and let me know which one you prefer.

Ingredients (for 2 as a side dish) :
  1. 30 ladies finger pieces - cut into 1 inch pieces
  2. 1 medium onion finely chopped
  3. 1 medium tomato finely chopped
  4. 3 cloves of garlic
  5. 1/4 cup coconut
  6. 1 tsp fennel/saunf seeds
  7. 1/2 tsp methi/fenugreek seeds
  8. 5 dried red chillies - adjust as per spiciness desired
  9. 1 tbsp coriander powder
  10. Tamarind ball the size of a small marble soaked in water
  11. 2 tbsp oil
  12. 1 tsp mustard seeds
  13. 1/2 tsp fennel/saunf seeds - apart from what is mentioned in 7.
  14. 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  15. 1/2 tsp garam masala powder
  16. Salt to taste

How I made it :
  1. Grind ingredients 4 to 9 with enough water to make a smooth paste
  2. In 1 tsp oil, fry the ladies finger pieces till the edges start to brown. Let them retain their crunch.
  3. In a pan, heat the remaining oil.
  4. Put in the mustard and fennel seeds. Once they completely splutter, put in the onions.
  5. Fry till onions turn pink.
  6. Add the ground paste.
  7. Fry on low heat, mixing frequently to avoid sticking. Fry for about 8 minutes. 
  8. Add in the tomatoes. 
  9. At this point, I put this entire mixture into a pressure cooker, added about 1/4 cup of water and cooked until 5 whistles on low. 
  10. To this, I added the tamarind water, turmeric powder, garam masala powder and salt to taste. 
  11. Throw in the okra pieces. 
  12. Add water to achieve desired consistency of gravy. Boil on low heat for about 10 minutes.
  13. Garnish with chopped coriander and serve with rice.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Oats Muffins

I seem to be stocking up on a lot of things. One of the disadvantages of frequent visits to the supermarket - you do end up picking a lot of stuff that you don't really need, and I mean - A LOT. I had picked up this bag of oats for a quick weekday breakfast, just as I had many other such similar items. I got home last evening elated that I need not cook as I had lots of food leftover from the previous day. With time on my hands, I decided to make these oats muffins which I got from here.

If you are a Sindhi and know what "kutti" is, you will love these. It reminded me so much of the days when mom would fast on Teej and bring this delectable treat home. "Kutti" is something like roasted wheat flour with sugar. The sugar is added when the flour is hot which causes it to just melt, creating magical flavours and texture.

Ingredients (For 6 muffins) :
For Streusel :

  1. 1/8 cup all purpose flour
  2. 1/6 cup oats
  3. 1/8 cup brown sugar
  4. 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

For Muffins :

  1. 1/2 cup milk
  2. 1/8 cup oil
  3. 1 beaten egg
  4. 1/2 tsp vanilla essence/powder
  5. 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  6. 1/6 cup brown sugar
  7. 1/2 cup oats
  8. 1/2 tablespoon baking powder

How I made it :
Prep for stresel:

  1. Mix together the oats, sugar and wheat flour.
  2. Cut in the butter. Mix with a fork to form a crumby mixture. Keep aside.


  1. Preheat oven to 200 degree C
  2. Mix together the baking powder, wheat flour, oats and sugar. If using vanilla powder, add that now. If using vanilla essence hold off with that in this step.
  3. Mix together milk, oil and egg. If using vanilla essence, add that in.
  4. Mix the wet and dry. Pour into muffin moulds. 
  5. Sprinkle streusel on the top. Press it in lightly.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes.
The top has a light crunch which rates this quite high on my list of dishes to make again and again. Tastes best when had warm on the same day. It loses its crunch the next day.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Spicy Panneer Bhurji

I love Panneer, esp. home made crumbled panneer - just fresh off the heat. It has been ages since I made panneer and especially this recipe. So here goes..
Ingredients (serves 2):
For the panneer
Milk - 1 litre
Vinegar - 1 capful
Curd - 1 tablespoon

For the Bhurji

  1. Panneer - made from above
  2. 1 onion - finely choppped
  3. 1/2 capsicum - finely chopped - I used a large one. Use a full capsicum if the size is small. (optional)
  4. 1/2 cup shelled peas
  5. 1 cup tomato puree
  6. 1 tbsp ginger and garlic paste
  7. 1 tsp red chilli powder
  8. 1/2 tsp garam masala powder
  9. A pinch of kasuri methi
  10. 1 tsp cumin/jeera seeds
  11. A pinch of tumeric powder
  12. salt to taste

How I made it :-

For the panneer
In a pan, bring the milk to a boil. Add the curd and vinegar. The milk will curdle. Strain out the liquid and retain it. It can be used for making extra soft rotis or for naans. Make sure to drain out as much liquid as you can from the panneer - I use a cloth and tie the panneer in that while I proceed with the rest.

For the bhurji

  1. In a wok heat up oil. Throw in the jeera seeds and kasuri methi.
  2. Once fragrant, add the onions and capsicum.
  3. Once the onion is pink, add the ginger garlic paste and peas.
  4. Fry for a minute.
  5. Add the tomato puree and powders.
  6. Fry till fat separates.
  7. Add the panneer and salt.
  8. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with rotis.