Saturday, December 8, 2012

Akki rotti

Akki rotti is one of my favourite dishes. Back at my mom's place, my amma and nanamma used to do this and we call it as Biyyapu pindi rotte and i craved it a lot (because it is a rare dish at home). I used to think, that, it is a great dish and no one in this world would do that as tasty as my mom does. It was so childish of me to think so (that's when i was young). And later when i had the same dish at my friend's place, i thought my friend's mom's akki rotti was better and what is more surprising is she did it in a jiffy.

After my marriage i learnt that there are different ways of doing it. As far as my observation goes, i knew two methods of doing it. One was from my mom's and the other was my sister's MIL. Okay, let me not bother you about who taught what and how i learnt. The following method is the one i prefer most.

Ingredients

Rice flour - 4 cups
Water - 2.1/2 cups
Onions - 3 medium (finely chopped)
Chilli - 5 to 6 (finely chopped)
Curry leaves - few
Grated Coconut - 1 cup
Salt - as required
Sugar - 1 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1 tbsp
Oil - 4 tbsp

Method:

1. Take wide bottomed vessel and boil the water in it. Pour 2 tbsp of oil and mix it well.
2. In another big bowl, mix the rice flour, onions, chillis, grated coconut, salt, sugar and cumin seeds.
3. Add 2 tbsp of oil to the flour mixture and mix it well with your hands.
4. Make sure the flour and other ingredients are mixed thoroughly.
5. Once the water is boiled, pour the flour mixture and put a lid on it. (don't mix it)

6. Reduce the stove's flame to low and keep it for 5 mins.
7. After five minutes remove the lid and check the bubbles of water around the flour mixture.
8. Off the stove and mix the flour and water with a long ladle. Thoroughly mix it so that all the water and flour blend in to each other.

9. Let it cool for few mins. Rub some oil to your hands and knead the dough with your hands.
10. Take some dough in to hands and make a big lemon sized ball. Repeat the same until you make all the dough in to balls


11. Cut the aluminium foil in to 11" x 14" inches sized sheet and place it on a flat surface. Smear a generous amount of oil on to the sheet.
12. Take the dough ball and place it on the sheet and slowly start pressing the ball and make a flat roti with your hands.
13. Place the pan on the stove on high flame.
14. Keep two or three sheets ready, so that you can make alternatively in the meantime.
15. Once the pan becomes hot enough, turn it to low flame.
16. Take the sheet in to your hands and place it on the pan reverse side (roti facing the pan)
17. Slowly and gently lift the sheet while you separate the roti from the sheet with the help of ladle. This neeeds to be done very very carefully and if you are not gentle enough, you may end up tearing the roti.
18. After transfering the roti in to the pan, just poke few holes with a fork on the roti and add some oil around the roti. Keep a lid and let it cook for 2 or 3 mins.
 

19. When the roti is cooked on one side, turn to other side and add little oil again. Don't keep the lid now.

20. After 2 or 3 mins (appox) the rotti will be cooked and you can see the crisp layer of roti.
21. Take it off the pan and transfer to a serving plate.

I can eat it all alone, but for those who want a side dish, a simple coconut chutney to an elaborate curry or gravy would be a great accompaniment. So, Try yourself and let me know what tastes better with this.

Usha

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Khaman Dhokla

I'm back from my sabbatical. I've recently started working and that's the reason for my break. As i said in my earlier post, i may not blogging but i do still follow many and many food blogs. While browsing, i came across this blog by Niya http://niyasworld.blogspot.in/2011/12/khaman-dhokla.html and bookmarked few recipes. And khaman dhokla is one of them.

I've tried this and it came out really great. I told the same recipe to my Mom and she got hooked to this recipe. After her success with this recipe, she repeated it for 3 or 4 times and we are very happy that every time it is getting better. I've tweaked the recipe a little to taste my family's taste buds and here is therecipe. I've added finely shredded green chillis to the batter for the spicyness (we needed). You can omit adding chillis to the batter.


Ingredients

For Batter:
1. Besan flour - 1 cup
2. Salt - 1/2 tblsp
3. Sugar - 2 tblsp
4. Turmeric powder - 1/2 tblsp
5. Green chillis - 3 (finely shredded)
6. Fresh Curds - 3/4th cup
7. Lemon juice - Juice of 1/2 lemon
8. Oil - 1 tblsp
9. Eno salt - 2 tsp

Optional:
Water - 1/4 cup or less (For thinning the batter)

For tempering:
Oil - for greasing
Mustard seeds - 1 tblsp
Asafoetida - A pinch
Chillis - 2 slit length wise
Sesame seeds - 3 tblsp
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Coriander - 3 tblsp (finely shredded)

Method

Take Besan flour in a large mixing bowl and add curd.

Mix the besan flour and curd thoroughly with a beater.

Keep it aside for an hour.
Add  Salt, Sugar, Chillis, Turmeric powder, Eno salt, Lemon juice and Oil to the batter.

The batter should be of pouring consistency. It should not be too thick or too runny. If the batter is too thick, just pour little water. (Add only spoon fulls of water gradually and check the thickness of batter).
Grease a wide bottomed vessel with oil.

Transfer the batter in to the greased vessel and pressure cook the batter for 15 mins (approx) in a pressure cooker.

The cooking time may vary if your batter is more. Mine took approximately 13 or 14 mins. I just check the steam coming out of the cooker with my hand and decide).
Let the cooker cool for 5 minutes. In the mean time, start the process of tempering.
Heat Oil in the tempering ladle and add Mustard seeds.
Once the mustard seeds starts cracking, add Length wise slit chillis and fry them.
Then add Curry leaves and add Asafoetida and switch off the heat.
Take off the cooked dhokla from the pressure cooker and sprinkle the shredded coriander generously.
Add the Sesame seeds too.
When it comes to sesame seeds and coriander, i always outdo myself and end up adding more of the stuff (I didn't have the coriander handy, though, on the day i did this)

Pour the tempered oil on the cooked Dhokla and cut it in to pieces and serve it with mint chutney and tomato sauce.


It tastes so yummy with a hint of spicy, sweet and sour tastes in one. This is the first time, i did this Dhokla from scratch and it came out really well and it tastes no less than one made with store brought instant mix.

Hope you will like it and give it a try.

Thanks

Usha


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Corn & Capsicum Rice - A heavenly combo

Corn & Capsicum is my favorite veg combo. I really love to cook both of them individually or as a  combo. Whenever i cook this combo, i'll be waiting to finish the cooking wanting to grab the final outcome asap.
These both veggies tastes blend with each other like a heaven and again i just love it. 

Recently, i've got this vegetables in my refrigerator in abundance. So, i thought to cook a single rice item menu for lunch. whenever, i'm too tired to cook a full course menu, i'll just give my family a few options from which they can choose one. And that would be our single item menu for the day. This corn & capsicum rice is also one of those few items. 

I prepared this item on a tiral basis and it has come well. So, let us get in to the details of recipe.

Ingredients:

Corn kernels - 150 gms
Capsicum finely chopped -  150 gms
Onions finely chopped - 3 big onions
Chilli  (cut in to pieces) - 8
Cooked rice - 2 cups
Oil - 5 tblsp
Cumin seeds - 2 tblsp
Dhania Powder - 1 tblsp
Pepper powder - 1 tblsp
Dry Chilli powder - 1 tblsp
Garam Masala - 1 tblsp
Salt - as required
Sugar - 1/2 tblsp
Kasoori Methi - a generous pinch

Method

Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds to the hot oil.
Once they started crackling, add chillis and let them fry in the oil.
Then add cut onions and cook them until they are tender and soft. Don't over cook the onions because they are still going to be in the frying pan for some more time and going to be cooked along with capsicum and corn too.

When the onions turn to transparent, add corn and capsicum pieces together.

Add salt and sugar to the veggies and sprinkle some water.


Cook them with the lid on for five minutes in the low flame.
When the veggies become soft and tender, add Dhania powder, garam masala powder, chilli powder and pepper powder.
Take the Kasoori methi in to your palm and rub with your gently and add it to the vegetables in the pan.

If you think the vegetables are getting dry, add little water (about a teaspoon at time)

Mix well with a spatula.
Now add the rice and mix well with a spatula.

Add finely chopped Coriander leaves and keep the lid on for 2 minutes.
Transfer in to a serving bowl and serve with curd raitha or tomato sauce.

My Notes
Chillis can be reduced to 6 (if you prefer then rice to be mildly spicy)
Chilli powder can be avoided (for the same above reason)
I would prefer this rice as it is (because i prepare the same with heavy dose of spicyness)

Since i'm back form a long break, more and more posts are coming up.

Usha


Monday, June 18, 2012

Random musings

Oh...It just don't seem to be ending...really..yeah..

If you are wondering of what i'm talking about, it is work. Yes. I've started working part time and most of my little left over time is going to it and thus my sabbatical from writing this blog.

I've been trying new recipes at home of late, but couldn't just post them because of my tight schedule. Took so many photos of my recipes and i'm yet to sort them out and write the recipe and attach the respective pic to it. This work, i recently took up, just seem to be unending at all.

I follow a handful of blogs (read FOOD Blogs) and i really wonder how they manage to post some or the other posts regularly. These girls must be having such a boundless energy to do it all. I really admire these people a lot and their work too. There is Nags of cooking and me, there is Maria of flavorsofmumbai and there is nithi from 4thsensecooking (to name a few) but there are a lot more out there who manages all and post consistently. Especially, this Nithi and Maria, these girls just don't seem to stop at nothing. Their recipes (and photos as well) need a special attention.

I tried to think of the reasons about my on and off blogging but couldn't put the blame on one. They must be organized or they must be more dedicated or they must be having more time. What ever be the reason, they are a bunch of dedicated bloggers and i just love looking their blogs and spending my time reading them. And i forgot to mention, i get inspired from their work (literally everyday) and i feel happy to visit their blogs everyday.

I just didn't get the balance of working and writing and home managing and baby sitting in a single day, i guess. Not that i'm less dedicated, but i don't find enough time to sit and write. The moment i sit in front of my laptop, my daughter comes asking for her favorite rhymes and songs on youtube or somebody calls me for something or my hubby is busy taking calls (and so my dear daughter is free from his clutches ;-) ) etc.,

I hope, after finishing my current assignment, i will sure try to be a little more organised write regularly.

Until then....

Usha

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Choco & Biscuit Fudge (without cooking or baking)

Hey there,

Its been so long since i wrote my last post. Was too busy with newly took up Part time assignment. That didn't stop me from cooking new dishes in the kitchen though. But, couldn't find time to write the same. This particular recipe was from Nags cookingandme. In fact, i tried this recipe a month before and it came out very very nice. I just did as she told except one ingredient.
I prepared this recipe, when my nephew's came to my place. And they were asking me to do something special. Believe me, It is so awesome and got over in a jiffy. I couldn't even take the snaps. Somehow, i managed to click a few of them. Here is the recipe.

Ingredients



Milk maid - 1/2 tin
Marie biscuits - 1 pkt
Dairymilk Hot chocolate powder - 2 tbsp (since it is a sweetened powder, i didn't use the sugar as told by Nags)
Butter - 50 gms
Nuts - 100 gms cashew/almond/raisin OR ALL

Method

Grease a plate with butter and keep it aside
Take the marie biscuits in to a ziplock cover and crush them using a rolling pin.

Take a large mixing bowl and add Marie biscuit crumble to it.

Add Hot chocolate powder to it and mix it well. (You can add more powder if you want)

Then add nuts & butter to the mixture. (Butter should be at room temperature)


Finally, add the milk maid gradually to the mixture while mixing it thoroughly. The consistency should not become loose or runny.

Mix thoroughly to let both dry and wet ingredients fold in to each other.


Then transfer the contents in to the greased plate and freeze it for an hour. After an hour, take the plate out of the fridge and cut the fudge in to pieces. (I've sprinkled some sugar and cocoa powder on top of the plate and that's the reason, it is looking dry in the above picture)

And here is the snap of the same.

Since i have used big plate i got very thin pieces of the same. This is so yummy and tasty and both my nephew's loved it and finished it instantly.

i hope you like the recipe and post. Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

Usha

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Nannari Sharbat

Whenever i have this cool drink, my memories go back to my childhood. This particular drink has a special place in my childhood memories which i cherish the most. Nannari (it is called so at my native place) is also called Sugandha water (at my grandma's place). The first time i had this drink was long ago in the 1990's at my grand mother's place, Kavali. 

We used to pack for the vacation in advance and start on the very first day of the holidays to this beautiful place called Musunur in Nellore dist. Kavali, AP. We would go to the Railway station and catch the Krishna Express in the early morning and reach Kavali by 9.30 AM. From Kavali town, we had to take a share auto or a special auto to reach home in our small village (Musunur) nearby. Before we get in to the Auto, my grand father would buy us this drink at a shop near Railway station. 

He used to wait in the Railway station for us and we could see him standing on the platform from the window of our bogie and wave to him until the train stopped. We could also see his eyes pop wide open and his teeth less mouth get a small curve with a smile, immediately after seeing us. It felt like, as if he was waiting for us, standing there, from so many days. It is true indeed (except for the 'standing there' part). My grandma and grandpa used to wait for us through out the year and we were treated like kings & queens. 

Even at my native place Tirupati, me and my sister used to go to a shop where it is always bustling with a long que of people for this drink. I still remember, even a few years before too, we went there and bought this same juice from the shop after a tiring shopping session. We just ran there and had this juice and it felt out of this world.

Hmmm...nostalgia. Okay, lets come to the present day and to this recipe. We get the concentrated solution of this nannari juice from shops. My father has brought this concentrated juice bottle for me as i like it very much. This has to be mixed with lemon juice and water / soda . But i found an alternative and here is the same. This is a  pretty simple drink, so i didn't take the photographs. :-)

Ingredients

Nannari sharbat (concentrate liquid) 
7up soda 

Take a tall glass tumbler and pour 3 tbsps of Nannari Juice (concentrate) in to it.
Then fill the glass with chilled 7 up soda up to 3/4th of the glass.
Mix it well with a spoon. 

Thats it. The great Nannari alias Sugandha water sharbat is ready. Generally this is mixed with half lemon juice and soda. But i'm too lazy to go buy a lemon and squeeze and mix it. I ran out of lemons at home. So, I found one 7up in the fridge and i made this easier.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great time.

Usha


Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Capsicum sabzi

Capsicum is one of my favorite veggies and i want to cook them often. I got fed up of having capsicum in onion and tomato gravy and want to try something new. Actually, this recipe happened accidentally and i was eagerly waiting to share it. Let me tell you how did it happen.

The other day, i was left with just a few capsicums and onions only. I was so confused and couldn't decide how to proceed further with these two things. i promptly turned to my SIL and asked for a quick recipe and got this.

Ingredients

Capsicum - 750 gms - cut in small bite sized pieces
Onions - 3 (Big size)
Chillis - 4
Coriander leaves - few sprigs
Cinnamon stick 1 inch piece
Cloves 4
Elachi 2
Marathi moggu (optional)
Oil - 6 tbsp
Poppy seeds
Coconut pieces
Cumin seeds
Salt
Sugar
Garam masala
Kasoori methi (Optional)

Method

Heat 3 tbsps of oil in a pan and add Cinnamon pieces, cloves, elachi and marathi moggu and fry them.
Add Onions and chillis and coriander leaves to this and saute them for while.
Keep a lid on the pan and let the onions and chillis cook on a low flame until the raw smell is gone.
In the mean time, boil a half cup of water and poppy seeds to it and let it sit for few minutes.
Switch off the stove and transfer the fried onions & chillies and poppy seeds in to the mixie jar
*(before doing this, i've removed all the masala items Cinnamon, elachi, cloves and marathi moggu as i don't want them to grind together with the onions).
Add half cup of coconut pieces to the mixie jar.
Grind the onions, poppy seeds and coconut together in a mixer to get a fine paste.
In a large frying pan, heat 4 tbsps of oil and add cumin seeds.
Once the cumin seeds starts crackling, add capsicum and saute them with a lid on the pan till they become soft.



Then add the onion and poppy seed paste to the capsicum and mix them well.

Add little water and cook it with the lid on.

Finally, add required amount of salt and a little sugar and tsp full of garam masala powder to the mixture and keep it on low flame for a minute or two.




Take off the stove and transfer the contents to a serving bowl.





Usha