Ragi Semiya

BM# 98: Week 2, Day 3
Theme : Dish for each meal

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, yet it’s one of the most neglected time in my house. My son prefers cereal over everything else. My husband has a full cup of Indian style milk coffee and calls it breakfast. And I join either of them depending on my mood that day.

Growing up, it was almost always dosa for breakfast at home on working days. That was the only thing all of us ate without bickering too much. When we were young, Amma used to make special breakfast for weekends, like poori masala, sevai or chole bhatura.

I remember amma making sevai at home. It’s a rice noodle based breakfast that’s made from scratch. It is also a time and effort consuming process. You have to press out a rice ball into noodles using a tool specifically meant for that purpose. Ours was the old fashioned one that has three legs and sits on the floor. You use your body weight (we were kids, so we had to use our weight) to squeeze the rice ball and feeling of accomplishment is high when done right.

Thankfully there is readymade sevai available now on the market and the process of making is a lot more easier. The recipe here is semiya made from ragi instead of rice. Read on for the recipe.

Recipe source : Megha’s Cooking channel

Ingredients:

  • 1 packet (180 gm) ragi vermicelli
  • 2 teaspoon oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, finely chopped
  • 2 green chilies, chopped
  • 1/2 cup broccoli florets, chopped
  • 1/2 cup cabbage
  • 2 tablespoons shredded coconut
  • salt to taste

Method:

  1. Follow the package instructions for making the ragi vermicelli. That involves soaking in water for three minutes and then after draining, steaming in a greased pan for 5-7 minutes. Greasing is important to avoid the semiya sticking onto the vessel. I used idli plates for steaming.
  2. Take off the heat, remove the sevai to a separate vessel, fluff with a fork to stop it from forming clumps. Set aside.
  3. Heat oil in a thick pan. Add mustard seeds. Once it crackles, add the onions and chilies Sauté for a couple of minutes and add the carrots and broccoli. Cover and cook for a couple of minutes until the veggies are soft. Add the cabbage in and sauté for a couple more minutes. Once all the vegetables are cooked, add the semiya and mix carefully. Add shredded coconut, if desired. Take off the heat and serve hot with chutney or even sugar.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM#98

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Instant Pot Ginger Almond Oatmeal

BM# 97: Week 2, Day 1
Theme : Vegan recipes

When I bought Instant Pot almost three years back, a friend of mine told me that I would stop using my regular pressure cooker shortly. I didn’t believe her for a single minute – How could I? I had been using my stove top pressure cooker for almost 2 decades! There was not a single day I wouldn’t use the cooker. So…No. No way that I would stop using my stovetop cooker.

Fast forward a couple of years and I can see what she meant. I have ditched my stovetop cooker for its electric counterpart. The only time I use the old one is when instant pot is not free.

I have resisted buying cookbooks for instant pot till now. Between the library and the internet I have never felt a need for it. But these books always have a long waiting period at the library. And now, there are so many Instant pot cookbooks just for Indian cooking that I finally felt compelled to buy one :D. I ended up buying The Essential Indian Instant Pot Cookbook and I absolutely love it.

This recipe is from the book and I have made it with homemade almond milk to make it vegan. Pressure cooking oats is not something I have done before and I couldn’t believe how creamy it turned out to be. I have already made this a couple of times and I love the taste and the texture a lot. Ginger, almonds, saffron and cardamom with oats…oh it’s delicious!

Recipe source: The essential Indian Instant Pot

Ingredients:

    1 cup rolled oats
    2.5 cups almond milk, divided
    1 tablespoon brown sugar
    1 teaspoon grated ginger
    1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
    A pinch of saffron
    A pinch of salt
    1 tablespoon each almonds and walnuts

Method:

  1. Add a cup of water inside the instant pot and keep the trivet inside.
  2. Keep 1 cup of milk aside. Add everything else into a steel bowl or Pyrex bowl that will fit inside the instant pot. Give a stir to combine everything and place the bowl in the trivet.
  3. Secure the lid and make sure it’s in sealing position. Set the timer for ten minutes in Manual setting. Let the pressure release naturally.
  4. The oatmeal would be thick. At the time of serving, add in the reserved cup of milk and mix everything. Serve with a teaspoon of maple syrup if desired.
  • Note:
    • You can use pot in pot method or cooking everything directly in instant pot.
    • If using regular cooker, about 8 whistles would do.

    Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM#97

    Kenyan Masala Chai

    BM# 96: Week 4, Day 1
    Theme : Southern Hemisphere

    My search for recipes from some of the African countries brought me so close to home that I was really surprised! I saw the recipe for Githeri at Mireille’s blog. I wanted to read up a little more about it and my search took me to YouTube. Video suggestions that followed the Githeri recipe showed one for Kenyan Masala Chai. I was intrigued by the name and reading more about it, I realize that it’s derived from the Indian masala chai. This particular video is by Jikoni Magic and is very well explained.

    Tea plantations were introduced in Kenya in the early 1900s by the British and they are now a one of the leading producers in the world. Apparently the country is a mix of lot of cultures with the presence of British bringing in a lot Indians/Asians as well. I knew that before but still looking at a recipe so far away from home, yet so similar to what you make everyday is a rather pleasant feeling.

    There is no one single recipe for the tea. Some add spices, some don’t. It’s all adjusted to suit your personal preference. So make your own call when it comes to what you add to your tea. The base concept is to boil the tea leaves with milk and water. So check out this recipe, prepare it at home and take a sip from anywhere in the world!

    Serves: 4

    Ingredients:

    • 3 cups water
    • 2″ piece of ginger, peeled and chopped
    • 4 cardamom pods
    • 1″ piece cinnamon stick,
    • 1 teaspoon black pepper
    • 2 teaspoons black tea leaves
    • 2 tablespoons sugar
    • 2 cups milk

    *the spices and the sugar can be adjusted according to your taste preference. You can add more tea leaves for a stronger brew.

    Method:

    1. Simmer water with the spices, tea leaves and sugar for about 10-15 minutes.
    1. Add the milk and simmer again for 5 minutes, making sure that it doesn’t spill over. If you mix the froth that comes up on top, the tea will go back to a simmer.
    2. Take off the heat and strain using a tea strainer. Serve hot.

    Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM#96

    Pinwheel crepe and fruit skewers

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    BMG # 82: Week 3, Day 1
    Theme : Crepes
    Recipe: Crepe and fruit skewers

    Like I mentioned in yesterday’s post, the batch of crepes helped me make three different kinds and this is the second one. The idea is from Kathryn Hawkins’  book Crepes, Waffles and Pancakes. The only modification I made was to spread a little jam to the crepes before threading them onto the skewers. This was a delicious and fun treat, I will try this again for sure. My husband, who doesn’t like to eat anything sweet, loved this one. This can definitely be a fun appetizer for parties or a quick snack that makes a good impression.

    I used the fruits I had (which also happened to be what the book recommended), but this would work with any combination of fruits. The bright red strawberry along with the green kiwi and yellowish guava was a good visual treat too. I followed the low fat honey crepes recipe for the crepes.

    This recipe goes to Cooking from Cookbook Challenge Group and Blogging Marathon. Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM#82 

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    Ingredients:

    For the crepe

    • 1 cup milk
    • 1/2 cup plain flour
    • 1 eggs
    • 1 teaspoons honey
    • 1 teaspoon oil
    • a pinch of salt
    • butter to grease the pan

    For making two fruit skewers

    • 1 crepe from above recipe
    • a teaspoon of jam, optional
    • 2 strawberries, halved
    • 1 kiwi, sliced
    • 1 small guava, sliced or sweet mango slices

    Method:

    1. Mix all the ingredients for the crepe using a wire whisk or blend in a mixer to get a lump free batter. This quantity makes about 8 crepes 6″ diameter in size. I used only one of those for the fruit skewer.
    2. To make crepes, heat a 6″ non stick skillet or pan. Spread a little butter to the base of the pan to grease it. Spoon 1/4 cup crepe batter and swirl/rotate the pan so that the batter coats the base. Try to avoid the batter going to the sides/walls of the pan. Cook until the batter is not wet anymore and the sides turn slightly brown. With a silicone spatula, carefully flip it over and cook the other side. Take off the pan and keep it on a plate. Make more crepes until the batter is used up.
    3. Take a crepe and spread a little jam or nutella and roll it up. Cut into 1″ thick pieces.
    4. Thread this pinwheel crepe with the different pieces of fruit onto a long bamboo skewer. Serve immediately.

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