Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Vegetable Stew(Kerala Style)

      Though the traditional kerala style vegetable stew is made with coconut milk, stew can also be made using whole milk with no compromise in taste.To me stew has to look white , that's how i've been taught from my keralite friend.

Diced carrots - 1 cup
Chopped Sugarsnap peas - 1 cup
Sliced potatoes - 1 cup
Ginger grated - 2 tsps
Chopped garlic - 2 tsps
Chopped Red onions - 1 cup
Curry leaves chopped - a few
Chopped coriander - a few
Cinnamon - 1 inch stick
Bay leaf - 1 (optional)
Cloves -2
Whole milk - 2 pints
Oil - 2 tsps
Salt - 1 tsp

Cooking Method:
Bring the wholemilk to a boil in a saucepan for 5 minutes in medium heat. In a wide bottomed pan heat 2 tsps of oil and add the bay leaves,cloves and cinnamon . Wait until the aroma starts coming . At this point add garlic and saute for a couple of minutes followed by onions for 3 minutes. Add the boiled milk and rest of the ingredients except coriander and keep stirring occasionally  until all the vegetables are cooked.Garnish it with coriander and serve.
I've added homegrown sugarsnap peas.Podless fresh/frozen peas can also be added. If you are not worried about the amount of calories involved, add cocnut milk instead of whole milk.Tastes best with kerala appam. Can also be served with idli/dosa/bread/chappathi/Naan

Saturday, 24 August 2013

Homemade Garlic Naan Bread

Naan bread need not be made with tandoori oven always. I made this naan bread using a normal pan/tawa with few simple ingredients.

Preparation time :10 mins
Cooking time: 2 mins for each bread  
Serves - 4
Number of breads : Makes 8 to 9 approximately

Egg - 1
Milk - 1 pint
Plain Flour - 4 cups
Garlic - 1 bulb
salt - 1/2 tsp
Oil - 1/2 cup

Peel the skin of the garlic and grate using a cheese grater.

Dough Preparation:
Break the egg and mix  it well with the milk. Add the salt with the flour so that it is mixed evenly.Knead the dough by adding little by little of the milk and egg mix with the plain flour until it becomes soft. If it is sticky add a bit more of the flour and continue kneading until it becomes soft.

 Divide the dough into several portions by making small balls using the palm .
Rolling the Dough:
Do a bit of dusting and roll it using a rolling pin until all the corners are evenly flattened. If any edge gets sticky while rolling repeat the dusting process .

Step 2 :
Pull the edges of the rolled dough and make a small well. Add a teaspoon of grated garlic and roll it to a ball again

Step :3
Repeat step:1 by rolling the dough again to make the naan ready to cook.

Cooking Method:
  Heat a flat-bottomed pan for 2 minutes. Transfer the rolled dough into the pan. Add 1/2 a tsp of oil. Cook on one side   for a minute on a medium flame , turn it over and repeat the process by cooking on the other side of the Naan.

Naan bread is ready to serve. Serve it with any curry/gravy of your choice. I served it with Jalfrezi.

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Raspberry Tart with Chocolate and walnuts

            After my strawberrymania it's time for raspberries. Unlike strawberries my hubby doesn't show much interest in raspberries. I have to pile it up for jam making if i fail to make any interesting desserts. Using up fresh raspberries in the form of tart is much simpler if the tart case is ready.

 Raspberries - a punnet
Milk Chocolate - Half a bar
Sponge Tart case - 1
Walnuts - 1 cup

Wash and hull the rsapberries.Grind the walnuts into a fine powder

Preparation Method:
Melt the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl for 1 and a half minutes. Mix the powdered walnuts with the melted chocolate and make it into a smooth paste. Apply this paste to form a layer on the tart case. Alternatively you can use use coacoa powder and caster sugar.

If you like the crunchy bits of walnut , you can pulse it and break the nuts coarsely. Top it up with fresh raspberries to form the top layer.

The chocolate layer can also be topped up with raspberry puree followed by the fresh fruit layer.
As i'm a chocolate lover i've added only the chocolate and nuts.Refrigerate for 1 hour , slice and serve.

Sunday, 18 August 2013

Coriander Falafels

         Falafels , we tasted these for the first time from Sainsbury's. The big list of ingredients at the back of the pack  made me think that it's complex to try at home. Unlike the ball-shaped falafels i tasted , Rachel has posted a healthy version Coriander Falafel on her blog . I can choose to ignore the shape as long as it is healthy and tasty. Her method of making falafels looked very simple to me with all the ingredients i regularly stock.I simply followed her recipe with an exception of replacing lemon juice with salt .


Boiled Chickpeas - 200 gms
Chopped Onions - 1 cup
Coriander - a small bunch
Cummin powder - 1/2 tsp
Coriander/Dhaniya powder - 1/2 tsp
Plain flour - 1 tbsp
Salt - 1/2 tsp
Garlic cloves - 3
Olive oil - 1 tbsp

Cooking method:
Simply pulse all the ingredients in a blender except plain flour and reserve a few coriander leaves for the decoration/garnishing. Make small patties and roll it in the flour. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large flat non-stick pan and cook  these patties until it turns golden brown on one side

Repeat the process by turning it over using a flat wooden spoon .Cook in a low flame for best results.Oops ! I realised that i've missed out the ground black pepper . That's okay, i'll add it next time.

The coriander i've used is homegrown and there's a big story to it. With super hot summer in the UK  this year,we were expecting a good supply of coriander but three batches of corainder were completely eaten away by the slugs and snails. They are the biggest challenge for organic gardening.I even tried lifting the plants back to a pot with compost. Nothing worked. I was not ready to give up and the coriander i used for this recipe is the fourth batch of coriander which made it to our plate finally. It's worth all the effort, they were very much flavourful.

 Sure will try it with a different shape again to get to perfection.The shapes might not look gr8 but it was truly deliiiiiiicccccccciiiiioooooouuuuus!

As i used Coriander linking it to this month's Cooking With Herbs hosted by Karen @ Lavender and lovage

Cooking with Herbs

Linking it to this month's Bookmarked Recipes hosted by Jacqueline

Friday, 16 August 2013

Paruppu Usli with French Beans

           We adore French beans as a family ! Yes, all of us love it and there's no limit to the number of recipes i tried with this beautiful vegetable. Ever since summer started i've been waiting for the flowers to turn into lovely beans so that i can make paruppu usli. Tender beans are the best for this recipe and nothing can beat the taste and tenderness of these home-grown beans.

I learnt this recipe from my family friend akka in Bangalore. Akka is an Iyengar and i can't ask any better person to learn this recipe. She is such a great cook. I still wonder how she makes a beautiful balance between her personal and professional life with all that cooking and working skills. Thank you very much akka for sharing this recipe!

I made it for the Aadi 18 festival and it was sitting in the draft long enough to be published..........

French Beans  finely chopped - 2 cups
Gingelly oil - 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Chopped Onions - 1 cup
Toor dhal - 1 cup
Dried red chillies - 1 or 2
Dried curry leaves - few leaves (Fresh Leaves adds better flavour)
Asafoetida - 1/2 tsp
Salt - 1/2 tsp

Soak the urad dhal along with red chilli in  2 cups of water and drain it after an hour. Grind it fine with asafoetida and  quarter of tspsalt without adding water .

 Cooking Method:
       Success of this recipe involves 2 key stages. Stage 1 is to steam cook the ground paste. I use the idli cooker to steam cook alternatively a steamer can be used. Steam cook the ground mix just like idlis until the dhal is cooked. Cool down and crumble it with fingers.

 Stage 2  is to make the normal beans poriyal . Heat the tawa add 1 tbsp of gingelly oil , do the seasoning with mustard seeds. Saute the chopped onion with 1/2 a tsp of salt  and add curry leaf.I add salt stagewise for a better taste.  Finely chopped french beans should be added at this point. Stir well ,close the lid of the tawa and cook the beans by closing the lid. I know is should've done justice to this by clicking a better picture  but i was in such a hurry on a festival day making multiple dishes.

Introduce the dhal crumble to the cooked beans mix it evenly and cook for a minute to make the usli ready. With the soaking, grinding, steaming and cooking this is defintely a time-consuming recipe but it's worth all the effort as the taste is heavenly!

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Oven Roasted spicy Courgette Rings

Wondering what to do with those zucchini/courgette too big for a tender courgette and too small for a marrow?
Spice it up with chilli powder and roast it in the oven

Interestingly Wikipedia says 'In 2005, a poll of 2,000 people revealed the zucchini to be Britain's 10th favorite culinary vegetable'

Courgette - 1
Chilli powder - 1 tsp
Olive oil - 2 tsps
Salt - 1/2 tsp

Slice the Couregette into small rings. Make sure it's not too thin as it shrinks while roasting in the oven.

 Cooking Method:
  Marinate the courgette rings with chilli powder, olive oil and salt for an hour. Roast it in the oven until it turns golden brown and serve as sizzlers !


Monday, 12 August 2013

Berry Medley with Gooseberries,Raspberries and Strawberries

             With the last pick of gooseberries and strawberries from my garden and the first pick of fresh raspberries , it's a perfect opportunity for me to make this berry medley packed with antioxidants.

Strawberries - a few
Gooseberries - 4 or 5
Raspberries - 10
Sugar - 1/4 cup
water - 1 cup

Preparation method:

        Wash ,hull the berries, add sugar and blend everything by adding a cup of water. I have added gooseberries as they were super sweet. Don't add gooseberries if they are sour.

Friday, 9 August 2013

Veggie Singapore Rice noodles

               My mum makes a lot of  sweet and savoury dishes using rice noodles. Not until i moved to the UK, i realised Singapore rice noodles is such a popular dish. Preparing this dish is an easy way to make my family eat plenty of organic vegetables from our garden and reaching our 5-a-day target.

Sliced Carrots -1 cup
Sliced Runner Beans - 1 cup
Broad Beans - 1 cup
Spinach - 1 cup
Cabbage - 1 cup
Sliced onion - 1 cup
Corainder - Few leaves
Garlic - 4 cloves (peeled and chopped)
Oil - 3tsps
Salt- 1 tsp
Rice noodles - 500 gms
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp(optional)
Maggi hot and sweet tomato chilli sauce - 2 tsps


 Pre-Requisites :
    Boil 2 pints of water in a  saucepan for 5 minutes. Immerse the rice noodles, close with a lid and wait for 5 minutes.Drain the excess water and allow it to cool.

Cooking Method:
             Heat  3 tsps of oil is a wide-bottomed pan and saute the garlic and onion until it becomes translucent. Pop in the sliced vegetables to the pan, add 1/2 cup of water and boil until the vegetables are cooked. Add the remaining ingredients except coriander and stir well. Garnish with coriander and serve hot!

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Kumro Phool Bhaja / Pumpkin Flower Fritters(Bengali Style)

                 Plenty of pumkin flowers are blooming at the moment in my backyard. There are two types of flowers in pumpkin male and the female flowers. The female flowers blooms with a tiny little  baby pumpkin at the base.If pollinated these turn into the big pumpkins we eat while male flowers just has the stalk.The flowering starts off with plenty of male flowers .Once it falls off from the stalk, we used to add it to our home compost but now these organic goodies goes into our tums with this Bengali recipe.The transition of plant to the plate is adorable.


    Gently wash the pumpkin flowers .Remove the calyx and the stalk by retaining just the petals.
Crushed garlic  1 tsp
Gram Flour - 1 cup
Chilli powder - 1 tsp
Sunflower Oil - 1/2 cup
Pumkin Flowers - a dozen
Salt - 1/4 tsp

Cooking Method:
            Except the flower mix all the ingredients with the help of a spatula by adding required amount of water to bring it to a batter like consistency. Make sure there the batter is lump free and smooth.Heat 1/2 cup oil in a flat wide-bottomed non-stick pan .Dip the pumpkin flower in the batter by holding at the bottom and cook it in the oil for 3 minutes. Turn it over and cook for another couple of minutes.Make sure the flowers doesn't touch each other for better results.

 Serve it as a starter or a tea-time snack along with dips of your choice. We enjoyed this flowery one of 5-A-Day with yougurt and mint dip!

If you are a gardener , next time you know what to do with those pumkin flowers,don't you?

Monday, 5 August 2013

Celebrating 5 years of blogging with Semia Payasam( Vermicelli Pudding)!

                 Techie Cookie Freaky turns 5 today and i would like to thank my friends and family who inspires me to keep blogging. Initially i started off this blog as my online dairy to keep track of my dishes, when my friends or relatives ask for any recipe i used my blog as a medium to share the recipes with them. After being aware of some copycats i had to make my blog private so that only my friends and family can access it.Recently i decided to make my blog public with a copyright protection. As my blog is all about Technology and cooking i would like to write this post with a dessert recipe and a technology tip.

Technology Tip - Understanding Google's spam Inbox
                  Bloggers must have noticed google's spam inbox. Let me explain how it functions and how to deal with blog comments. I have noticed in many food blogs comments such as yummy! droolworthy! delicious! nice recipe etc.....With my understanding google detects these comments as spam and automatically sends it to the spam inbox. It might be upsetting for you to see your blogger friends comments going into a spam inbox. Google's spam detection is technically a function to help bloggers to avoid any spam messages. It functions in such a way if the number of words on the comments are too less it detects it as spam. If we have really read through the recipe and appreciated, we do leave a comment with some details , don't we?

Semia Payasam/Vermicelli Pudding -Recipe

    Payasam is a south Indian pudding traditionally made with milk and rice/lentils/semolina/vermicelli.


   Roasted Vermicelli - 50 gms
   Ghee - 3 tsps or  Butter- a small chunk
   Whole Milk - 1 pint
   Raisins - 1/4 cup
   Cashews - a dozen
   Cardamom - a few
   Sugar - 3/4 cup
   Raspberries - a few(optional)

Cooking method:
    Boil the milk in a saucepan in a medium heat until it foams up. Reduce the heat and start cooking in sim by adding the vermicilli and cardamom . Cardamom can also be added in the powdered form for a better flavour. Stir occasionally until the vermicilli is cooked thouroughly.Add the sugar at this point and stir until it dissolves. Heat up a small chunk of butter or 3 tsps of ghee and roast the raisins and cashewnuts .Add it to the pudding,mix well with a spatula,wait for the vermicilli to absorb the milk. Top it up with raspberries . Best Served Chilled !

Here's a virtual treat for all my loved ones and my readers

Sending this entry to FSF Summer - August Challenge  'Summer Puds'Four Seasons Food
Four Seasons Food hosted by Delicieux and Chezfoti

Saturday, 3 August 2013

Aadi 18 festival ! - 5-A-day in just one meal

Aadi 18 marks the start of monsoon in southern part of India  and is mainly celebrated on the river banks. On this day farmers pay tributes to life sustaining properties of water. Special prayers are conducted to Goddess Parvathi/Amman on this day in temples to get blessings from her for uninterrupted supply of water throughout the year for farming. Whether you do farming or not it's followed as a tradition for generations in families to visit nearyby river to pay tributes and needless to say good food guaranteed!

What food you make depends on the family tradition. Some families make 3 or 4 varities of rice with some crips and some make a complete south indian meal with vadai and payasam for the celebration.I moved to the UK right after getting married and learnt from my mum how to celebrate this festival. According to her Pear is an important fruit for this festival(Don't ask me why? I don't have an answer), Rice mixed with jaggery and  threads dipped in turmeric is a must.I follow these instructions from my mum and celebrate the festival accordingly.Flowers are an integral part of our festivals. Luckily our scented jasmines are in season at the moment in my garden. I chose to make a south indian meal platter with Sambar, Rice,Cabbage poriyal, Beans paruppu usli, Masal Vadai(Channa dhal Fritters) and Payasam(pudding). Will share some of these recipes soon.

 Let us pray to  our mother nature to provide good supply of water this year for all us. My wishes for all those who celebrate Aadi 18!

Friday, 2 August 2013

'5-A-Day Fundas'

To motivate myself to blog about my 5-A-Day intakes for a healthy lifestyle!

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Strawberry Preservation Fundas - Winner Announcement

  First of all i would like to thank the participants of my first ever event. The Winner of this event is Louisa  of Chezfoti for the recipe 'Strawberry and banana yogurt pops'. Congratulations!

Yogurt Lollies

Here is my version of your recipe Strawberry Lollies/Kulfi

A special thanks to Gayathri of Gajus kitchen for making this lovely Strawberry yogurt parfait  for this event

Strawberry Yogurt Parfait

Louisa in your post you mentioned that you are moving to the UK .As a resident of  UK and a UK blogger i would like to welcome you to the  UK with this hand-crafted crown with strawberries and strawberry leaves. Congratulations once again and thanks for Participating!