Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Fruit Custard

Making fruit custard is one easy way of reaching my 5-a-day target. Fruits are instant energisers and love to include them everyday in some form or the other. This recipe has been requested by my friends several times but i miss out taking snapahots every time . I made this for 'Oliver's Picnic' recently.

You can use any fruits of your choice but try to avoid citrus fruits as it doesn't go well with custard.

Apricots - 2
Plums- 2
Blush Pears -2
Pink Lady Apples - 2
Kiwi - 2
Instant Custard Powder - 1 pack
whole Milk - 3/4 of a pint
Sugar - 1/4 cup (optional)

Preparation Method:
   In a wide bowl,  mix the instant custard powder with  3/4 pint of whole milk with hand thoroughly without lumps and clots.

 Start cooking a medium flame for 5 minutes and stir occasionally.Bubbles starts coming up at this stage

Stir continously for another 3 minutes. Add sugar and stir for a couple of minutes and switch off the stove .Cool it down.Once the custard is cooled down .Chop the fruits and add the fruit slices to the custard.

Mix the custard and the fruits well and refrigirate it for atleast 10 minutes. Best served Chilled!

Monday, 24 June 2013

Oilver's Picnic - A picnic for a good cause

Yesterday we invited a couple to our house. We also came to know about the fundraising event 'Oliver's Picnic' through  our friends falling on the same day. It was also  coinciding with the last day of the  'National Picnic Week'  so we  decided to take our guest for a picnic and wanted to have a three-in-one picnic.

I started cooking with so much of enthusiasm.  I cooked everything in the menu except Tortillas(readymade) for 4 of us and our little one.This was the menu i planned for the picnic.
 I've linked my previous posts for some recipes .Was too busy cooking and missed out taking pictures of some and will be posting a few soon.

Salads :
Coleslaw salad -
Lettuce and cucumber salad with stuffed olives(All i've done for this recipe was just chopping and decorating)

Masal Vadai (Channa dhal Fritters)

Main Meal :

Peas Pulao
Chettinad Mutton Masala -
Balti Chicken Curry -

Fruit Custard -
Carrot Halwa

It was a big relief for me after cooking everything on time.

Before talking more about Oliver's Picnic. Let me explain  who is Oliver and why a picnic on his name?

Oliver Scholes is a toddler who passed away sadly last year at 2 years of age  because of  haemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis and his parents hosted  'Oliver's Picnic'  in memory of him  as a fundraising for  'The Histiocytosis Research Trust' . To know more please visit

When we were about to start packing for the picnic, it started downpouring. We didn't want our guest to feel uncomfortable having their lunch drenching  in heavy rain and decided to have our picnic meal at home.  That didn't stop us going to the picnic. We packed some crisps & juice and headed to 'Oliver's Picnic' to celebrate the National Picnic Week' for a good cause.

The rain has stopped for a while when we reached there.The entry fee was very much affordable £1 per adult and just 50p per child which included a free drink too.

There were  lot of games for children.

It started downpouring again.

We went inside an eatery to escape rain and had some yummy snacks.

A newspaper has reported, despite the rain 1000 people attended 'Oliver's Picnic ' yesterday raising £5000

Sending this  Picnic Entry to Four Seasons Food Summer
Four Seasons Food
Four Seasons Food hosted by Delicieux and Chezfoti


Saturday, 22 June 2013

Spicy Puffed Rice

As it was raining yesterday, we wanted to eat something spicy which can be made very quickly. My friend recently vistited India and brought me some nice roasted peanuts . Would love to add curry leaves to this snack but it's not easy to get hold of curry leaves in the UK at the moment. I made my  rainy-day favourite snack which took just 5 minutes .
Puffed Rice - 150 gms
Roasted Peanuts - 1/2 cup
Bengal gram - 1/4 cup
Dried red chilli - 1
Garlic - 3 cloves
Turmeric powder - 1 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Salt - 1/2 tsp
Oil - 2 tsps

Cooking Method:

 Heat the oil in a pan and do the seasoning with mustard seeds. Crush the garlic and roast it in the oil.Add the peanuts and bengal gram at this stage and roast for a couple of minutes.

Add the rest of the ingredients and stir for 3 minutes.

Thursday, 20 June 2013

Telegram going into History

BSNL  announces it's plan to the end its Telegram services in India . The apparent reason being the losses incurred , many people are unhappy with it. I would call telegram as the SMS of the olden days. As a child i use to watch my dad's expression wide-eyed until the news is confirmed good or bad.

Though the telegrams were used to convey any type of message say wishing a couple on their wedding ,i would say mostly it was used to convey any sad news. 'START IMMEDIATELY'  being the commonly used telegram.

I'll finish it with a telegram style note  'SAD TO C U GO'

Monday, 17 June 2013

Saag Aloo

As her buddy i'm joyfully celebrating Gayathri's first year blog anniversary by dedicating this post to her. Keep up the good work. You are truly dedicated in what you do.

 Nothing would be more appropriate than a popular Veggie recipe for the celebration.As i'm enjoying the British Summer the organic spinach from my garden calls for this recipe.

Only after checking g3's blog i've realised it's almost 5 years since i started blogging.You are inspiring me to celebrate my 5th year Blog Anniversary in style. Happy Blogging!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1. Boil three medium sized potatoes , peel the skin and slice them to the sizes you prefer
2. Finely Chop the spinach, onion, garlic and ginger

Spinach - 1 bunch
Garlic Cloves  - 2
Ginger - 1 inch piece
Chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
Cummin Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Red Onion - 1/2
Potatoes - 3 (medium sized)
turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp(optional)
salt - 1/2 tsp
Olive Oil - 1 tbsp

Cooking Method:

    Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pan and add the cummin seeds. Once it splutters saute the chopped onion, garlic and ginger. At this point add the spinach and cook for 3 minutes in medium flame without adding water.Spinach can be added without chopping but chopping helps to save cooking time.

Once the spinach is cooked add the rest of the ingredients and cook for a couple of minutes

I know u'll love this with ur thayir saadham..............

Saturday, 15 June 2013


Suzhiyan is a  South Indian sweet made using channa dhal. I was not a big fan of this sweet during my childhood but after marriage i started making it frequently as this is my hubby's most favourite sweet.
I never remmember celebrating a  single diwali while i was in India without suzhiyan as my mum used to make this for every diwali following the family tradition. She follows a time-consuming method to make this sweet but i derived my own version by following shortcuts.

 Making this sweet involves three processes

 1. Making the dough/batter
 2. Making the puranam
 3. Binding the puranam with dough and deep frying


Plain Flour/maida - 200 gms
Channa dhal - 200 gms
Jaggery - 100 gms
Dessicated Coconut - 1 cup
Cardamom (powdered) - 1/2 tsp
Salt - 1/4 pinch
Oil - 200 ml


  Soak the channa dhal for 3 hours and pressure cook it with just one whistle

Dough/ Batter preparation

    I'm not sure if i should call this as a dough or batter as it is in between the consistency of these two but my granny is an expert in making this sweet and recommends this consistency to make a successful suzhiyan.Mix the plain flour with water and 2 tbsps of oil to bring it to a consistency between a batter and a dough as below

Preparation of puranam:

 Drain the water from the pressure-cooked channal dhal completely and mix it with  jaggaery ,cardamom and dessicated coconut. You can use fresh coconut instead of desicated coconut. 

Preparation of Suzhiyan:

     Spread the dough in a thick plastic by applying few drops of oil and place a spoon of puranam at the the centre. Using Banana leaf is the best way to do this but i cannot expect to get banana leaves in the UK easily. Heat the remaining oil in a thick bottomed pan . Deep fry the suzhiyan.



Monday, 10 June 2013

Vendakkai Poondu varuval(Okra Garlic Fry)

There are many ways to make vendai varuval and this the simplest and tastiest method . Garlic brings in a distinct flavour while cooking along with okra.


   Wash the okra and carefully dry it with kitchen tissues to make it less sticky while cooking

Okra - 150 gms
Garlic cloves - 3
Fennel seeds - 1/4 tsp
Chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Salt - 1/2 tsp
Oil - 1 tbsp

Cooking Method:

   Heat the Oil in a pan and add the fennel seeds anad garlic . fry until garlic turns brown. At this point add the rest of ingredients and close the lid of the pan and steam cook without adding water for 12 mins. Stir every minute to cook evenly.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Dessicated Coconut Biscuits

Self raising flour - 1 cup
Butter - 125 gms
Sugar - 200 gms
Dessicated coconut - 200 gms

Preparing the dough:

      Mix up all the ingredients except butter . Melt the butter and add it little by little to the mix. To make the dough without lumps and clots use the spatula to mix the dough thoroughly. The dough will be a bit sticky as i've added more coconut and less flour. Adjust the ratio according to your preference. Spread the dough and cut into the shapes you prefer.

Baking Method:

     Pre-heat the oven to 175 degrees. Grease the baking tray with butter and arrange thebiscuits for baking with sufficient space so that the biscuits won't stick to each other while baking. Bake the biscuits until golden brown . 


Monday, 3 June 2013

What is 5-A-Day?

5-A-Day is all about consuming 5 portions of fruit or veg a day.  We might  ask why just 5 ? 5 is the recommended  number but you can eat as much as you want. They have arrived at this number so that atleast we get different types of vitamins for our everyday nutritional needs. Here in the UK most of the fruits and vegetables sold in the shops contains information about how much is 1 portion in the packaging. Fresh , frozen ,tinned all counts. Even juice is counted as long as it contains more fruit content.Potato is an exception as it is considered for the carbohydrate intake. Consuming 5-A-Day helps  to stay fit and healthy in the long run.