Kerala Puttu and Kadala Curry

Friday, July 31, 2009

Vineela Siva,Sreevidya and EC have passed on the “Creative Blogger”award.This award is pretty unique as it has certain rules attached to it:)

1.You must thank the person who has given you the award.
2.Copy the logo and place it on your blog.
3.Link to the person who has nominated you for the award.
4.Name 7 things about yourself that people might find interesting.
5.Nominate 7 other Kreative Bloggers.
6.Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate.
7.Leave a comment on which of the blogs to let them know they have been nominated.

I thank Vineela Siva,Sreevidya and EC for this lovely award.

I have been tagged earlier with similar rules and am jes copying what I had mentioned earlier.So here are few things about me......

1.Kitchen is my exclusive paradise, an area where I pursue my culinary endeavors , no one gets to cook..It’s MY SPACE!

2.I am a cleanliness freak, particularly Kitchen & Bathroom.Utensils lying in the sink is a good enough reason for me to lose my temper.P bares the brunt most times.

3.I drink gallons of water,so I use the loo a lot:-P My friends always take a dig at me for this!

4.I believe,am not only good in making friends but keeping them too,still in touch with folks I’ve known since I was 5yrs old.Touchwood!

5.As a kid I’ve been told” books are like god”,if your feet happens to touch it,take it immediately and hold it close to your eyes (actually its like saying sorry god).Just for fun,my Dad and bro torture me by actually taking a newspaper,touch it to my feet,hide it & make me run around the entire house,I would be relieved only when I find it. Its quite funny but I still believe in this.

6.I don’t claim to be a Master neither a geek,but certainly good at excel and numbers, after all that’s been my bread & butter for long.

7.I drool over Death by Chocolate & Tiramisu,the latter being my fav one.Am crazy to the extent of naming P’s number on my mobile phone as “Tiramisu”

I am passing this on to - Varsha,Prathiba,Vijitha,Supriya,Mahimaa,Vidya and Lubna.

Now coming to the post,of all the Kerala food that I've had,Puttu always remains close to my heart.This is one such food that I simple can't resist.Typical Puttu is made using the Puttu Maker.I had picked one such during my India trip this year,however had to drop it due to weight constraints.So I am sticking to my own way of making it using a cooker.


Prep Time - 10 mins
Start to Finish - 20mins
Servings - 2 to 3


Store bought Puttu powder/Rice flour – 2 cups
Salt – a pinch
Fresh shredded Coconut – 1 cup


If using rice flour,heat a pan and sauté the flour until raw smell disappears.In a big bowl mix the flour,salt and li’l water until you end up with a crumbled texture.Do not add a lot of water,as we don’t need a dough like consistency.For best results,sprinkle water li’l by li’l and gently mix the flour.Add coconut and mix well.Place the mixture in a wide vessel and steam it for about 8-9mins in a pressure cooker.You may use an idly stand or jes a plain wide vessel.Serve hot along with Kadala curry(recipe follows).

Infact,if you have a sweet tooth,you may add sugar and cardamom powder to the steamed mixture and have it along with riped bananas,a typical way of relishing them.While sauting the flour,ensure not to burn them.I generally use a 2:1 ratio for the flour and the coconut,you may choose to lessen the quantity of coconut.These days Puttu powders are easily available in any Indian Grocers which comes very handy,I've used Ragi Puttu Powder, which is very high in proteins.I came across an interesting way of making them in Divya Vikram’s blog,you may check that out too.

Kadala Curry

Prep Time – 10min
Start to Finish – 45 min(excluding soaking time)
Serves – 2 to 3


Black Chana/Konda Kadala/Black or Brown chickpeas – 2 cups (soaked overnight and cooked with salt until soft)
Tomato – 2 (pureed)
Onion – 1 small (finely chopped)

For the masala(to be grinded):

Coconut – ½ cup
Onion – 1 small (roughly chopped)
Ginger – an inch
Garlic pods – 3 nos
Coriander and Cumin seeds – 2 tbsp each dry roasted (optional)
Coriander cumin powder – 1 tbsp
Garam Masala – 1 tbsp
Green chillies – 2 nos
Red Chilli Powder – 1 tbsp

Seasoning -

Mustard seeds – 1/ tsp
Curry leaves – a few
Coconut Oil – 2 tbsp


1.In a wok/skillet,heat oil and add mustard and curry leaves.Add Onions and sauté until translucent.
2.Add the grinded masala paste,sauté for few minutes.Add the tomato puree and cook until the raw smell disappears.
3.Add salt(salt has been already added while cooking the chickpeas,hence be careful while adding it the second time).
4.Add the boiled/cooked chickpeas to this gravy.Add a cup of water and allow it to cook until it thickens.Serve hot with Puttu.

I mentioned that the coriander and cumin seeds is optional,I add them because it brings an extra flavor when grinded fresh and also brings in a nice aroma when blended with coconut.


Puttu and Kadala Curry is the best combo that I can think of.Though it tasted very well,i somehow feel that the ones made with rice flour tastes the BEST!

Sending Kadala Curry to MLLA 13 hosted by Harini of Tongueticklers,which is the brainchild of Susan of Well Seasoned Cook


Crispy Onion Rings and FIC reminder!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Two more days to go for FIC – Express your Mood.I have been wondering now for a while about the nature of the event, was it complex?.My apologies to my fellow bloggers if they have found it a li’l complex,however that wasn’t my intention.I really wanted to kindle the creative instincts in each one of us.In any case, I thank the people who have shown interest and I must say am indeed impressed with your innovation.Am looking forward to more entries for the event.

Have you seen “What about Bob”? or its remake the tamil movie “Tenali”.Its about this main character who fears about anything and everything,be it crossing the road,heights,water basically he is someone with multiple phobias. I feel embarrassed to admit but I do,I have some too,though I feel phobias is a very big a word to use,I would say am scared of certain things be it darkness,heights or water.Two weeks back we had been to Wisconsin Dells which is the “Waterpark Capital of the World”.The name says it all,it was water rides and dry rides everywhere.Me not being a ride person,wasn’t too keen on this trip.But P wanted to visit this place and hence the plan was made.We tagged along with our eight other friends and it was surely a fun filled trip.I was ready for any group activities/group rides but nothing alone,I am not all that brave and daring.sigh! I was scared even of Go Karting…can you beat that??? Huh! That’s me.

I thoroughly fell in love with the Dippin’ dots Icecream which i tried there - they are icecream snacks , very tiny beads of icecream,shaved ice and yogurt.I took this pic from the net,this is how they look.

They come in different flavors chocolate,cookie dough,vanilla,banana split and bubble gum to name a few.The craze for this continued even after I got back from the trip.I looked for this icecream on the net,found the nearest location,with few other friends I ended up going and to my surprise it was not a shop but jes an vending machine inside a movie theatre.What amused me was the fact that the details of a small vending machine was available on the net.Wow!!!!

Onion rings are my all time fav appetizer.I have had them in “n” number of places but the best one would always be in Applebees.Tried this out at home, keeping the taste in mind and I was very excited,it was jes perfect!

Prep time – 5 min
Start to finish – 15mins
Servings - 2 to 3 (as an appetizer)


White Sweet Onion – 1 large sliced into ½” thick pieces and separated into individual rings.
Buttermilk – 1 ½ Cups
All Purpose Flour/Maida – 1 ½ cups
Breadcrumbs – ½ cup
Black Pepper powder – ¼ tsp
Chilli powder – 1 tsp
Oil – for frying
Salt – as per taste


Soak the Onion rings in buttermilk for about 20 – 30mins. Mix all the dry ingredients together except for the bread crumbs which has to be kept in a wide plate separately. Heat oil in a wok/skillet.Take one ring at a time,coat them with the flour,dip it again onto the buttermilk and coat it back with the flour,immediately drop them onto the breadcrumbs,coat it well and drop them in hot oil and fry until golden crown. Don’t crowd them in the fryer.Use paper towel to drain off the excess oil.Serve hot with any sauce.

Note: Soaking the rings in buttermilk for long might end with sour onion rings,so be careful.Adding breadcrumbs surely makes a difference in the taste,however this can be avoided.As the flour by itself will make the rings crispy,but adding crumbs might help it stay crispier for a li’l long than usual. Dropping them one by one for frying might be a li’l time consuming,instead keep about 5 to 6 rings ready and fry them at once,in the meanwhile keep the next batch ready.

Verdict : Its simple awesome....i have no other words to say:)

Sending this to CLICK Allium hosted by Jugalbandhi,FIC Express your mood hosted by me and to WYF - Fried Snack hosted by EC.


Chocolate covered Marshmallow Cookies - Daring Baker's Challenge July 2009

Monday, July 27, 2009

The July Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Nicole of Sweet Tooth. She chose Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies and Milan Cookies from pastry chef Gale Gand of the Food Network.

This is my first experience at the Daring Baker's Challenge and am looking forward to more of it.

Mallow experience -

I was very fascinated with the entire process.Though the time mentioned in the original recipe was very reasonable but it took a li'l long for me.I have never used marshmallows in my baking and this was the first time.I had some store bought ones which came handy.I had halved the quantity of the ingredients which means I should have ended up with 24 cookies but I ended up with 36 of them!

Mallows (Chocolate Covered Marshmallow Cookies) Recipe courtesy Gale Gand, from Food Network website
Prep Time: 15 min (cookies only)
Inactive Prep Time: 1 hours or up to 3 days (cookies only)
Cook Time: 10 min (cookies only)
Serves: 36 cookies


1 1/2 cups All purpose flour
¼ cup white sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 eggs, whisked together
Homemade marshmallows, recipe follows(However I used the store bought ones)
Chocolate glaze, recipe follows

1.In a mixer with the paddle attachment, blend the dry ingredients.

2.On low speed, add the butter and mix until sandy.

3.Add the eggs and mix until combine.

4.Form the dough into a disk, wrap with cling film or parchment and refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.

5.When ready to bake, grease a cookie sheet or line it with parchment paper or a silicon mat.

6.Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

7.Roll out the dough to 1/8-inch thickness, on a lightly floured surface. Use a 1 to 1 1/2 inches cookie cutter to cut out small rounds of dough.

8.Transfer to the prepared pan and bake for 10 minutes or until light golden brown. Let cool to room temperature.

9.Pipe a “kiss” of marshmallow onto each cookie. Let set at room temperature for 2 hours.

10.Line a cookie sheet with parchment or silicon mat.

11.One at a time, gently drop the marshmallow-topped cookies into the hot chocolate glaze. Lift out with a fork and let excess chocolate drip back into the bowl.

12.Place on the prepared pan and let set at room temperature until the coating is firm, about 1 to 2 hours.

Note:If you don’t want to make your own marshmallows,you can cut a large marshmallow in half and place on the cookie base.Heat in a preheated 350-degree oven to slump the marshmallow slightly,it will expand and brown a little. Let cool, then proceed with the chocolate dipping.

Prep Time: 5 min (marshmallows only)
Inactive Prep Time: 2 hours (marshmallows only)
Cook Time: 10-20 min (marshmallows only, includes cooking sugar & whipping marshmallow)
Serves: About 4 dozen cookies at 1 - 1.5 inch
Homemade marshmallows:
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup light corn syrup
3/4 cup (168.76 grams/5.95oz) sugar
1 tablespoon powdered gelatin
2 tablespoons cold water
2 egg whites,room temperature
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1.In a saucepan,combine the water,corn syrup,and sugar,bring to a boil until “soft-ball” stage,or 235 degrees on a candy thermometer.

2.Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water and let dissolve.

3.Remove the syrup from the heat,add the gelatin,and mix.

4.Whip the whites until soft peaks form and pour the syrup into the whites.

5.Add the vanilla and continue whipping until stiff.

6.Transfer to a pastry bag.

Prep Time: 5 min (glaze only)
Inactive Prep Time: N/A
Cook Time: 5-7 min (glaze only)
Serves: Enough to dip about 4 doz. cookies at 1 - 1.5 inch

Chocolate glaze:

12 ounces semisweet chocolate
2 ounces cocoa butter or vegetable oil

1.Melt the 2 ingredients together in the top of a double boiler or a bowl set over barely simmering water.

Verdict –

The cookies even without the chocolate glaze tasted very well.I didn’t use a cookie cutter hence my cookies were quite big in size and the marshmallow on top looked too small.End of the day,I am satisfied with my experience with the mallows.It was tasty and very chocolaty.Since I had used store bought marshmallows,I had to bake it for few mintues.Guess I had left it for a longer time and they turned completely flat.Had to redo it.

I love the Peperridge farm Milano Cookies,was too keen on making them.However due to time constraint I had to choose between the Mallows and the Milano cookies.Chocolate always comes first,hence I decided on the Mallows.Will need to plan ahead of time in the future.Am eagerly looking forward to the other Baker's post.


Whole Wheat Berry Pancakes

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Okie am back again.After my long 2.5months India vacation,I thought I wudnt take a break again,but realized the break wasn’t enough.Now I blame it to the beautiful weather which has been terrific.Winter was more like a “Staycation” meaning a stay at home vacation.Hence,we want to make the best use of Summer.I haven’t been able to blog much,this is an old draft which am posting now.

There was a time when I envied my freedom of getting up in the morning and plan my day.It was only work,work and work that kept me occupied.Now I have all the time in the world and also the weather in favor, nothing stops me.We’ve been busy travelling and visiting a lot of new places,some new adventures,exciting vacations etc.

This month has been quite busy,started with an adventurous Houseboat trip – my first houseboat experience! Weekend in the water – that’s how I spent my July 4th long weekend.Well I have no words to describe.Here lakes are as huge as a Sea. Imagine you are in the water in a houseboat, jes given a Map for navigation,lake surrounded by hundreds and hundreds of islands,wudnt one get lost???? Which direction would one travel? Except for the radio base which cud be reached for help,there is nothing else other than water!Its a mini home kinda set up inside the houseboat with stove top,refrigerator,Oven,Bunk beds accommodating eight people,bathroom,dining table etc…wat more can one ask for?We docked the boat in different locations - at times in secluded places,once at the beach to feel the cold water.Too amused by our Vegas trip,we wanted to try our hands in the casino,so docked our boat at the casino too.We were abt 100miles away from Canada,that was exciting too.Am looking forward to more such trips in the future.Well this is how the houseboat looked.

Coming to the post,making a pancake always makes me happy.I ran out of whipped cream,but this tasted good even without it.


Whole Wheat flour – 1 ½ cup
Baking Powder – 1 tsp
Salt – a pinch
Sugar – 2 tsp
Egg – 1
Milk – ½ cup
Blueberries/Strawberries - ½ cup(only strawberries to be chopped)
Water – as required
Cooking Spray/Canola oil – for cooking.


Whisk egg and sugar together.Mix all the dry ingredients together.Add the wet ingredients to this and mix well.Add water,just enough to get a thin batter.Heat a pan,spray with cooking spray(you may use oil too),pour ¼ cup of the batter on the pan and cook on both sides just like Dosas.

Serve hot along with any syrup(maple syrup or any fruit syrup will do good).

Verdict – Its utterly delicious one.Soft and gui gui(with the syrup).Perfect for breakfast or Dinner.

Looking forward to more entries for FIC-Express your Mood.


Food in Colors(FIC)- Express your Mood

Thursday, July 2, 2009

First of all thanks to Harini for letting me host this event.

I believe our nature or personality traits or moods influences our creations .It could be as complex as an abstract painting or a brilliant piece of musical composition or as simple as the regular food we make on a day to day basis.Life in itself is so colorful,right from the the dresses we wear,the cars we drive,the walls around us,etc. Mother Nature too has blessed us with so much of color around us,be it the vast blue sea, dense green forest,dark brown mountains or the golden sand.Being in Midwest,how can I forget the white Snow?

Scientific studies have shown that there is a a strong link between Human Nature and their choice of Colors.On the same lines I thought,to host this event that brings about the dimension of color in the food based on our every day mood.For instance,if you are a vibrant and happy fellow,you may chose to cook something YELLOW;calm and quiet,you may choose WHITE;excited,enthusiastic and strange choose ORANGE;angry and stressed choose RED and so on.

So how are you feeling today?

It would be a fun exercise if you specify your current mood when you
send in the entries,to prove if there is indeed a scientific link between the mood and choice of colors!

Here are the rules for FIC:

1. Cook and post any food with emphasis on the theme "Express your Mood" in the finished product.

2.Please note that raw vegetables are allowed only in soups or salads. Also, do not re-post earlier posts for this event. It is fun when we get new entries.

3.Only vegetarian food allowed,no eggs too.

4.You MUST link your post to Sunshinemom's rules page and this post.Entries not linked to both these post will not be included in the final round up.

5.If your recipe is inspired or taken from a blog or site, please link by name instead of using a link with "here", to acknowledge the person and not the thing!

6.Send an e-mail to me at with the following details:

Your name:
The name of your blog:
URL of your blog:
Title of the dish:
URL of the post:
Your mood:
A 300px width image of your dish

It would be nice if you could use the logo in your submission.

6.If you do not have a blog and would like to participate, please e-mail your recipe and a 300px wide picture at my id

7.Multiple entries allowed,last date for submission is July 31,2009

Looking forward to all bloggers participation and make this event a great success.


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