Wednesday, February 18, 2009


It was a really nice long weekend for us.I made some delicious cranberry chocolate cookies for valentine's day.It may not be the appropriate sweet for the day but anything with chocolate in it sounds good to me.And if its combined with something like cranberries then there is no doubt.This heavenly combo is what attracted me to this in the first place.I saw these cookies on HC's My kitchen treasures blog and i knew it right away i have to make it.They were absolutely delicious.A little crunchy but i didnt mind that at all as long as i get a chocolate and cranberry in every bite.
The only small change i made is i added equal quantities of white and dark chocolate chips.Thank you HC for this wonderful recipe!!!

Friday, February 13, 2009


Recently i have been trying to recreate the dishes that i ate during my college days.Palak rice is one among many such dishes.It brings back the nostalgic memories of my good old college days.I prepared the rice in coconut milk instead of plain water and then mixed in the paste made of spinach,coriander leaves and green chillies.It was truly delicious.It tasted close to the one i ate in manipal.It tastes great on its own but one prefers a side dish then a spicy fish curry or lijjat pappad is the best combo.

Basmati rice - 1 cup
Chopped ginger - 2 tsp
Chopped garlic - 2 tsp
Cinnamon stick - 1/2 of a small stick
Canned coconut milk - 1 cup
water - 2 cups
Ghee - 2 tsp
oil - 2 tsp
shredded coconut - 1 tbsp, to garnish
salt to taste

For Grinding:-

Spinach - A whole bunch
Cilantro - A small bunch
green chillies - 4 nos


Wash , clean and soak the rice for about 15-20 mins.Grind the required ingredients and keep aside.Mix the canned coconut with 2 cups of water and keep aside.
Heat a large deep pan on medium.Add ghee and oil.When it gets slightly hot add ginger,garlic and cinnamon stick.Saute for a few seconds and then add the rice.Saute that for about 2-3 mins and then add the coconut milk mixed in water.Add salt.Leave it uncovered.Let it come to a boil and cook until 3/4 th of the water evaporates.Ones it comes to a boil keep stirring it frequently.After most of the water evaporates slowly stir in the spinach,cilantro and green chilli paste little by little.Remove from flame and garnish it with shredded coconut.Serve it warm with lijjat pappad or spicy fish curry or like me eat it just like that.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Pickles are a must for me while having meals.Eggplant pickle was something i had heard of before but never tried.I had a couple of chinese eggplants in stockand so i wanted to give it a try and WOW!!it was simply delicious.Even my husband who is not fond of pickles loved it.The base of my pickle is made of garlic and pearl onion paste.It also adds a lot of flavour to the pickle .For heat and the red color i used a lot of kashmiri red chilli pdr.This gives the right heat without making it too spicy.I baked the eggplant pieces before adding them into mixture.The end result is too good.Other than with rice , it tastes great with chapathis too.


Chinese eggplant - 2 nos, diced small
Pearl onions - 10-12 nos, peeled
Chopped garlic - 2 tsp
turmeric pdr - 1 /2 tsp
Kashmiri red chilli pdr - 2-3 tbsp(If you dont have kashmiri red chilli pdr then reduce the amount of red chilli pdr)
Asafoetida - a pinch
mustard seeds - 1 tsp
curry leaves - of 1 sprig
Tamarind paste - 2 tsp
Vinegar - 1 1/2 tsp
lemon juice - 1 tsp(optional)
salt to taste

Preheat oven to 375 deg F.Arrange the diced eggplant pieces on a baking dish.Sprinkle with some salt and let it bake for about 15-20 mins or until they become soft and tender.
In the meantime grind the pearl onions to a smooth paste and keep aside.

Heat some oil in a wok/kadai.Add mustard seeds.Once they start to crackle add curry leaves and garlic .Saute for a few seconds.Then add turmeric and red chilli pdr.Add the onion paste and some salt.Stir it for a couple of mins.Add a pinch of asafoetida.Now add the baked eggplant pieces .Mix it well until the eggplant pieces are well coated with the mixture.Add the tamarind paste and mix it well.Using the back of a wooden spoon mash the pieces into the mixture.Remove from heat and add the vinegar and lemon juice.Mix it again.Let it cool.Serve it with rice or chapathi.Refrigerate the remaining.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


Rasam is a spicy soup ,very popular in South India. Pineapple rasam is one of the different kinds of rasam prepared in south India.I hadnt even heard of it until my hubby mentioned it to me.He had eaten it in his hostel in madras during his college days.First I was quite hesitant to make it as i didnt know how this new kind of rasam would turn out and i loved the regular spicy rasam .Well i gave it a try and i was quite amazed as to how good it tasted.Pineapple gives the right amount of sweet and sour taste which is not at all dominating .From then on i prepare pineapple rasam more often than the regular spicy one.So friends those who havent tried pineapple rasam yet should definitely give this a try.

Tomato - 1 cup, chopped
Canned pineapple - 1/2 cup, chopped
pineapple juice - 1/2 cup,unsweetened
Toor dal - 1/2 cup, cooked
water - 1 1/2 - 2 cups (depending how thin one wants it)
garlic - 2 cloves,chopped
turmeric - 1/4 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Red chilli pdr - 1 tsp
Rasam pdr - 1 tbsp
red chillies - 2 nos
curry leaves - of 1 sprig
cilantro - a bunch, chopped
salt to taste

For Rasam pdr:-

Corinader seeds - 2 tbsp
Cumin seeds - 2 tsp
Black peppercorn - 1 tsp
Red chillies - 3-4 nos


Dry roast the ingredients for rasam pdr and grind it to a fine pdr.Keep aside

Heat some oil in a wok/kadai.Add mustard seeds.When it starts to crackle add cumin seeds,curry leaves,red chillies and garlic.Saute for a few seconds.Then add turmeric pdr,red chilli pdr ,tomatoes and pineapple pieces.Saute for a couple of mins and then add the rasam pdr and toor dal.Stir well.Now add the pineapple juice and water.Add salt to taste.Simmer and let it come to a boil.Add cilantro leaves.Serve hot with rice.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Vegetable puffs remind me of my good old school days.After school my friends and me used to hog on these crunchy puffs from the bakery before heading for our tuition classes.I loved it so much especially the egg puffs.Thats for later ,today its vegetable puffs.Its very easy to make this goodie as long as one has these store bought puff pastry sheets in their refrigerator.One can make any kind of filling,cheese and spinach or a sweet filling or a chicken filling.The one i have made is a simple potato and onion filling.I have taken this to so many get together parties and its always a hit.

Puff pastry sheets - 1

For Filling:-

Boiled potatoes - 2 nos
Onion - 1 medium size, sliced
Frozen peas - 1/4 cup
Fresh ginger - 1 1/2 tsp, chopped
Fresh garlic - 2 cloves, chopped
curry leaves - of 1 sprig
turmeric - 1/4 tsp
red chilli pdr - 1 1/2 tsp
cumin seeds - 1 tsp
coriander pdr - 2 tsp
cumin pdr - 1 tsp
amchur pdr - 1/4 tsp
chaat masala pdr - 1 /4 tsp
coriander leaves - a small bunch, chopped
salt to taste


Mash the potatoes and keep aside.Heat some oil in a pan.Add cumin seeds, ginger, garlic and curry leaves.Saute for a few seconds and then add the sliced onions.Saute it until they turn soft and translucent.Then add turmeric pdr,red chilli pdr,amchur pdr ,coriander pdr,cumin pdr and chaat masala pdr.Stir well and add the peas.Add salt and stir in for a couple more mins.Now add the mashed potatoes and mix well.In the end stir in the chopped coriander leaves.Keep aside and let it cool.

Follow the box instructions and thaw the puff pastry sheets.Preheat oven to 400 deg F.Sprinkle some flour on both sides of the pastry sheets and roll it out a bit.Cut it into 9 equal squares.take a spoonful of the filling and place it on the center of the square. Close it by lifting the opposite corner over the filling and pressing it tightly.Apply some water to help seal the edges.Bake for about 10-15 mins or until it turns golden brown.Serve it warm with coffee or tea.