Saturday, November 28, 2015

Tomato chutney for idli and dosas

Chutney and dips have a special place in Indian cuisine, different types of chutneys are made to serve along with snacks and meals.
 When ever we make south Indian snacks we usually make coconut chutney, but tomato chutney is also a  popular tangy and easy accompaniment to serve with soft idlis and dosas. It is easy to make and stays well for a fortnight if kept refrigerated. The roasted lentils give a nice nutty flavour and texture to this tomato chutney.

Tomato,chopped -400 gms (4 medium)
Bengal gram/chana daal - 3 tbsp
White lentil/urad daal -1 tbsp
Red kashmiri chilies -2
Curry leaves -10
Turmeric /haldi - 1/3 tsp
Tamarind/imli ,dried - 1tsp (optional, i did not add it)
Salt - to taste
Asafoetida /hing- 1/4 tsp
Cooking oil -2 tsp
Grated Coconut -  tbsp
For Tempering:
Cooking oil -1 tsp
Mustard seeds/rai - 1/2 tsp
Whole red chilies -2
Curry leaves-6
Wash and chop tomatoes into small pieces. Heat oil in a pan and bengal gram and white lentil.Saute on low heat till they become golden in colour.Add dried red chilies and curry leaves and saute till chili gets a nice colour,but do not overcook otherwise the lentil may get burnt.Add turmeric, asafoetida, salt  and chopped tomatoes.Cook on medium flame till tomatoes become soft.Remove the mixture in a bowl and let it cool down completely.Add the tomato mixture, tamarind (if using), grated coconut in the mixer jar.Grind the mixture to make a smooth paste.Take out the chutney in a bowl.Heat oil in a small pan and add mustard seeds.When seeds start crackling add whole red chilies and few curry leaves and  add in the chutney. Mix and serve with dosa and idlis. Keep refrigerated the left over chutney.

Lets check out what my fellow marathoners have cooked today for BM# 58.

Muhamarra dip

I made this dip and asked my friends at office and home to taste. I told them this does not have onion, tomato, ginger or garlic. So guess what it is made up of. Yep they could not guess it but loved the taste. I enjoyed watching them tickle their brains. And since they loved it so much and asked me so many times, I did share my secret..hehe

I know it is not much of a secret in the food blogging world, it is fun to share none the less..

I was simple amazed by the lovely red colour of this dip! With few healthy ingredients you have a yummy dip ready in no time.  It tasted heavenly with a toasted bread. Do give this recipe a try if you have not already made it.

Muhammara is a red pepper and walnut dip which originated in Syria. It is one of the most popular dips in Middle Eastern Cuisine. This is a very simple dip and one just has to blend the ingredients to a paste.
1 big red bell pepper
1/2 onion
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup bread crumbs
Handful walnuts
1-4 tsp red chilly powder
1/4 tsp cuminseeds
Lemon juice
Salt to taste

Roast the bell pepper on slow fire till completely charred.
Let cool.
Scrape off the charred skin.
Wash the pepper and chop it roughly.
Blend the bread crumbs in a food processor, adding a little water and making a purée.
Sauté the onion till golden.
Now add these onions to the bread crumb puree .
Also add the walnuts, pepper,chilly powder, cuminseeds, lemon juice , salt and olive oil.
Blend it to a smooth paste adding olive oil as needed to get the right consistency.
Serve as a dip with pita, wedges, chips or as a spread over a toast. It can also be served as a sauce with kebabs.

Lets check out what my fellow marathoners have cooked today for BM# 58.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Namak Paare | Easy diwali snacks

Hope you had a good diwali! Sharing one of the very popular diwali snack. .namak paare..these munchies are so addictive and so easy to prepare! 
You got to try these if not already! 
These are excellent with tea or pickle or on their own too :)

Ingredients -
  • 3 Cup – APF(maida)
  • 1 cup - Wheat flour
  • 2 tsp – Carom Seeds
  • 3 Tbsps – Oil for kneading the dough
  • 2 tsp - crushed kasoori methi
  • to taste – Salt
  • Oil for frying
Method -

  1. In a large bowl mix flour, salt, kasoori methi & carom seeds.
  2. Add oil for knading mix gently. Now hold the flour in your fist, if it forms a loose clump, then the amount of oil is fine, if it doesn’t then add a bit more oil.
  3. Using water knead the dough. The dough should be slightly hard to touch. Wrap in a wet muslin cloth & keep it aside for 1/2 hour.
  4. Form big balls with the dough. Roll these balls using a rolling pin. Use a knife to cut square or rhombus shaped pieces.
  5. Heat oil in a big wok, fry these pastry till golden brown.
  6. Enjoy warm with tea or coffee or pickle. :) It will store well in air-tight container at room temp for several days.

Sending this to blogging marathon 58 hosted by Srivalli.

Pink Pound Cake

Like most girls, little miss loves everything pink! And then she wanted a pink cake! I thought of few options to make the cake pink—beetroot, strawberry..then thought why not add rooh afza to the batter and get lovely rose flavoured and aromatic cake..and yes it was pink too J

Any suggestions to get a lovely pink color for the cakes ?


Unsalted butter (at room temperature) - 1/2 cup 
Sifted Cake flour - 150 grams 
Milk at room temperature - 3 Tbsp
Granulated sugar - 150 grams ( 3/4 cup)
Pure Vanilla extract - 1 and 1/2 tsp
Salt - 1/4 tsp
Baking powder - 1 tsp
Large eggs (at room temperature) - 2
Rooh afza - 2 tbsp
Preheat the oven to 350 F or 177 C and place the rack in the middle or center of the oven.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, rooh afza and the vanilla extract.
In another bowl add the flour, baking powder,sugar and salt and mix. you can use a hand mixer. Now add the butter and half of the egg mixture and mix at low speed just until the flour is moistened.
 If you are using hand mixer, you might want to do it a bit longer. This will help to aerate the cake batter and to develop the cake structure. Scrape down the batter and add the remaining egg mixture in 2 additions beating for about 30 seconds after each addition.
Scrape the batter in to the loaf pan which we kept ready earlier. 
Bake this cake for about 55 - 60 until the tooth pick when inserted comes out clean and the outer crust is golden brown. Keep an eye on the cake. At about 30 minutes, if you see that the outer crust of the cake is browning to too fast, here is what you do. Take an aluminium foil large enough to cover the open part of the loaf pan. Apply butter to it and cover the loaf pan with foil (butter side inside ).
When the cake is done, remove from the oven and let it cool for about 10 minutes. Transfer the cake to a lightly butter wire rack.
This cake can be frozen for up to 2 months or remains fresh in the fridge for about a week or so.


Sending this to blogging marathon 58 hosted by Srivalli.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Garlic and cilantro/fenugreek rolls | Bread baking

Baking is therapeutic, its like creating something magical! I baked these garlic cilantro fenugreek pull apart rolls for the first time for a birthday party. They came out excellent with the yummy filling.
It was loved by my friends and vanished in no time!


For the  dough

4  cups – All purpose flour  (Maida)
1 Tbsp Instant yeast
2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 ½ cups warm water
2 Tbsp olive oil/butter

For the filling

Mix all the ingredients given below to prepare the filling.

2 Tbsp butter at room temperature
1 tsp mixed herbs – oregano,basil,rosemary and garlic powder
¼ tsp fresh ground pepper
¼ tsp salt
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 Tbsp fine chopped cilantro/coriander leaves
Few sprigs of fresh fenugreek leaves.. You can use kasoori methi if fresh not available
Prove the yeast – add the sugar to 1/2 cup of warm water. Mix well. The water has to be just the right temperature- not too hot because that will kill the yeast not too cool because the yeast won’t prove. Drop some on the back of your wrist and it should feel warm there. Add the yeast and rest covered for 10-15 minutes. The yeast should froth like soapy bubbles. If it doesn’t, throw the mix and start afresh. Proper proving of the yeast is vital to good bread!
In a big bowl, take the flour and salt. Mix.
Once the yeast has bloomed, add it to the flour and knead the dough with the remaining 1 cup of water. It will be sticky and it is meant to be like that.
Add the Olive oil/butter and knead for another 10-12 minutes.
Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl, cover with cling film, or a kitchen towel and rest for 11/2 to 2 hours. The dough should double up. The time actually depends on the weather conditions-if very hot, it doubles sooner than the 1 ½ hours. This is the first prove.
Remove from the bowl once the dough is doubled and gently knock out the air. Here I split the dough into two. I used one half to make the pull apart rolls and the other half for a square focaccia and 6 mini burger buns.
Roll it out into a  big square or circle as desired of about one inch thickness . Spread the filling generously.
Roll the circle/square to make a cylinder.
Cut into equal pieces using a pizza-cutter or a knife.
Place the cut cylinders into a well greased baking pan.
Cover and let it rise for about 45 minutes (till doubled)
When there are 20 minutes to go, pre-heat the oven at 200C.
Brush gently with milk and bake  at 180C for 20-25 minutes till golden brown
Serve fresh out of the oven.

The pull aparts are great on their own or can be served for any of the meals :).
Happy Diwali! !

Sending this to blogging marathon 58 hosted by Srivalli.
Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#58

Monday, November 9, 2015

Kids rangoli

Wishing you a very happy diwali dear friends.  Today is the first day of this 5 day celebration called as dhanteras or the goddess of wealth is worshiped.

The above is a lovely rangoli prepared by my 11 year old niece.  Isn't it pretty :)


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