Thursday, March 25, 2010

Tasty,healthy,yummy Gol Gol Alu Patties with Salad

An Evening with IPL

IPL3 is really taking big toll on our health and time. The life goes around watching the match from 2.30 pm till mid night. It makes us to be a couch potato. Being from Chennai, I am a strong supporter of Chennai Super Kings and my husband not so emotionally attached to Chennai supports Rajasthan Royals since IPL1 and the reason being RR were underdogs then and won the trophy. Unfortunately RR not so successful so far in this season,  he is on and off out of his couch!!. One such outing from his couch to the kitchen brought out this excellent combination and was a treat to me. You may try his instant time pass attempt and enjoy watching IPL.

Gol Gol Alu Patties:

Potatoes - 3 medium sized
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Red chilly powder - 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves - a sprig finely choped
Coriander leaves- 2 tbsp finely chopped
Salt to taste

Boil potatoes and mash it well. In a pan, add little oil, then add mustard seeds. Once it begins to splutter, add curry leaves  and keep stirring in low flame . Then, add turmeric powder and chilly powder and then add the mashed potatoes, salt and mix well. Finally add the chopped coriander leaves and allow it to cool. Once cooled, make small balls and shallow fry them in the non-stick Appam pan/Kuzhi Paniyaram Pan.

He found frying in Appam pan very easy and consumes less oil too. Further when it is done, the outer layer was crunchy while inner was soft and spicy.

The Alu Patties along with awesome sprouts and  salad was a real treat while watching your team win in IPL.   I loved it. The combination of the salad and the gol gol alu patties is incredible.
"It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes - Douglas Adams" - Certainly not Rajasthan Royals' losing spree!!!!!!!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Tasty,tangy Mango Thokku

Mango season must be on in Chennai.  I can imagine the scene in Mylapore Mada Veedhi where roadside vendors would be flooded with Avakkai mangoes and the small Vadu mangoes too. The vendors are very enterprising that they would offer to chop the mangoes for Avakkai with the shell after the purchase. You need special chopping knife to do the cutting.  Of course, nowadays one can find 'Kili mooku mango' (Literally meaning, the tip of the mango is slightly hooked and resembles the parrot beak ) almost 365 days in one place or the other.  This mango is best suited for 'Thokku'.  While visiting the temple in Dubai, I was overwhelmed to find these in the Indian store near the temple.  Grabbed some and here is the outcome.

Raw mangoes - 2
Chilly powder - 3 to 4 tbsp
Methi seeds - 1/4 tsp
Asafoetida - 1/4 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Sesame seed Oil - 1/4 cup

Dry roast Methi seeds and grind it finely and keep aside.  Wash the mangoes and dry it well. Peel the skin and chop into thin slices. You can either chop or grate too. I prefer chopping into thin slices as I love to have some pieces too in the thokku.

In a thick bottom pan, add Sesame seed oil and add mustard seeds. When it splutters, keep the flame in the lowest and add the chopped or grated mango pieces.  Keep stirring at regular intervals so that it does not get stuck to the bottom of the pan. After 15 to 20 minutes, you can see the mangoes becoming mushy.  Mash it well with a spatula and keep stirring.

 Once the mashed mangoes are devoid of water, add salt, red chilly powder and the dry roasted Methi powder. Stir well. In another small pan, add little oil and add Asafoetida to it. Once, it gets roasted in oil, add to the Mango thokku mix. Mix everything well and keep stirring.  It is done when the final outcome is thick and the oil leaves out.


Mangoes have to be dried well for the Thokku to have more shelf life.
Refrigeration is necessary.
I prefer adding Asafoetida finally as the flavour stays in the Thokku.
Do not cover while the mangoes are getting cooked. It may take a little more time, but it has longer shelf life this way.
Use a dry spoon always and do not keep the spoon inside the pickle jar permanently.

Enjoy preparing this pickle and goes well with anything and everything but my best option would be with curd rice.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Karadiyan Nombu Adai

Karadayan nombu is one of the major festivals in Tamil Nadu and is observed when the Tamil month 'Maasi' ends and 'Panguni' begins. It is observed by married women to seek blessings for the long and healthy life of their spouse.  Even unmarried girls observe this Nombu to get good husbands.  Karadaiyan nombu is celebrated tomorrow (Sunday, timing between 8.15 p.m. to 9.15 p.m.IST) and the Neiveidhyam (offering to Godess)  is  Uppu and Vella adai (Salt and sweet).  

On the day of the Nombu, kolams are put in front of the Pooja space and on it plaintain leaf is placed. On the plaintain leaf, Adai, butter, Vettrilai and Pakku, Bananas, Flowers and the Nombu charadu are placed.  Pooja begins by praying to Goddess Lakshmi and Neivaidhyam is done. Then, by chanting the following mantras, the charadu is tied in the neck:

Urukkatha vennaiyum Oru Adaiyum Naan Nootrein
En Kanavar ennai vittu piriyamal irukka vendum.

Vella adai recipe
Rice flour- 1 cup
Jaggery- 3/4 cup
Cardamom - 1/4tsp
  • Fry rice flour in low heat till the flour becomes dry (padham is if u take flour in ur hand it shd be very dry and u should be able to draw a kolam).
  • Add the jaggery in 1/4 cup water and keep it in low flame until it dissolves completely.
  • Once jaggery dissolves, strain to remove stones etc.
  • This jaggery water must be brought to a boil 
  • Add cardamom powder, coconut pieces and slowly add rice flour till u feel the batter is thick enough to make adais (patties).
  • Then make it into small adais(patties) as shown in the photo and steam in cooker like idli.

Uppu adai recipe:

Rice flour- 1 cup
Green chillies- 1nos
Ural dal- 1 tsp
Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp 
Asafoetida - two pinches
Curry leaves- 2-3
Water- 1 1/2 cup (adjust according to the quality of the rice flour- the batter should not be too thick or too watery)
Sale to taste
  • Take oil in kadai add urad dal, mustard seed, asafoetida, curry leaves, green chillies and pour water and salt.
  • Once water starts boiling put the fried rice flour till the mix is thick.
  • Make into adais(patties) as shown in the photo and steam in cooker like idli

Perform neivaidhyam and tastes best with butter.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Mor Kozhambu


Vegetables - 1 cup chopped (you can use ladies finger as used here, ash gourd, yam, aravi, red pumpkin)
Whole coriander - 1/2 tsp
Tuvar dal - 1/2 tsp
Methi seeds - 1/4 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp
Green chillies - 2 or 3
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Whipped buttermilk - 2 cups
Coconut - 1/2 cup
Curry leaves

  1. Boil the vegetables with salt and turmeric. Water should just cover the vegetables.
  2. Soak Tuvar dal and whole coriander for half hour.
  3. Grind coconut with soaked tuvar dal,whole coriander and green chillies to a fine paste.
  4. Once the vegetables are cooked, add the ground coconut mixture. Allow it to just boil.
  5. Add the thick buttermilk to it and keep in very low heat.
  6. Switch off the heat within 2 to 3 minutes of adding buttermilk, else it will curdle.
  7. Temper with mustard seeds and methi seeds.
  8. Add curry leaves and ur tasty mor kozhambu is ready.

Bon Appetit!

Thursday, March 4, 2010


Seas and the Oceans
Knows their limit
And do not cross theirs
To keep us all at peace

Animals and birds
Knows their limit
And does not attempt to hurt us
Unless we instigate

With ears and eyes a couple
God has given us only one tongue
He knows that this one is difficult to handle
For it leaps beyond limit.

Spitting venom would hurt many a hearts
Interference would break many  a relationships
With everyone aware of  their limits
World is a wonderful place to live in.

Fire and swords are slow engines of destruction, compared to the tongue of a Gossip.
Richard Steele
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