Kanchipuram Idli

BM#102: Week 2, Day 2
Theme :
Restaurant recipes

Me and my husband are both from middle income families where eating out was a rarity. It wasn’t financially feasible for our parents plus there was this firm notion in their minds that outside food is substandard. After we got married and moved out of my in laws place, me and my husband used to eat out a lot. The kitchen was always closed on weekends.

My in laws and my dad still look at eating out as wasting money, but my mother, who was held back by the financial situation while we were growing up but more so by my dad, was quick to change. She always liked eating out, but lacked company to do it. I remember her trying kanchipuram idlis at a South Indian restaurant we had visited once. So when I made kanchipuram idlis recently, I was thinking of her :-).

Read on for the recipe.

Ingredients:

For the batter:

  • 1/2 cup raw rice
  • 1/2 cup parboiled rice
  • 3/4 cup urad dal
  • 1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • Salt as needed

For making the idli:

  • 2 tablespoons ghee
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, crushed
  • Handful of cashew nuts
  • 1/4 teaspoon dry ginger powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder

Method:

  1. Soak the rice, fenugreek seeds and dal together overnight. Grind next morning using a grinder or mixie. Set aside to ferment. Refrigerate once the batter is fermented and has doubled in quantity. This usually takes about 8-10 hours depending on the weather.
  2. When ready to prepare the idli, crush black pepper and cumin together using a mortar and pestle. Heat ghee and add the cumin pepper mix. Add cashews and sauté until it changes color. Remove from heat, let it cool completely and then add to the batter.
  3. Add the turmeric powder and the dry ginger powder also to the batter.
  4. Pour the batter into the idli molds and steam for 10-12 minutes until the idlis are cooked through.
  5. Take off the heat, serve with sambar and idli podi.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the recipe from other Blogging Marathoners.

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Aloo paratha

 

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 BM# 102 : Week 3, Day 1
Theme : Restaurant recreations

When we were growing up, the culture of eating outside wasn’t there. In fact, eating outside was considered as a last option when there is absolutely no other way out. There were two main reasons for this -1) there weren’t main clean and neat hotels then. 2) affordability. It was only after we got jobs and moved out of our home, that we started eating out.

My brother moved out when he got a job in Bangalore. The couple of times that I visited him, he had taken me to home style Punjabi dhabas near his place. The fare would be simple – couple varieties of parathas and maybe some curries. We have never looked at the Curries there. We would order aloo parathas most of the time and relish it with thick delicious yogurt and the pickle.

My husband wants a curry for parathas, where as I feel that the curry takes the limelight off the paratha. Aloo parathas are easy to make and there is no one single recipe to make this. Every household has its own variations but the end product is always delicious. If you are making parathas for the first time, it’s a good idea to watch some videos first. And also remember that rolling out rotis gets better with practice. So don’t be disheartened if the first few parathas tend to be a little difficult to make.

Read on for the recipe while.

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Ingredients:

For the dough

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon oil, optional
  • Salt as needed
  • Water for kneading the dough

For the filling:

  • 4 medium potatoes, boiled and peeled
  • 2 teaspoons of oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped finely
  • 1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon aamchur
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • Salt as needed

Method:

  • In a big bowl, add the flour. Add oil and slowly kneed together, adding water in steps to make a dough. Stop adding water when the dough comes together and kneed until it’s smooth.Set aside and let it rest for 30 minutes.
  • Peel and mash the boiled potatoes. There shouldn’t be any big lumps. Keep aside.
  • You can add all the masalas and the chopped onions to the potato mix directly, but I like to sauté the onions before that. It’s an optional step. Sauté the onions and ginger garlic paste in oil and once the onions turn pink, add the masalas. Turn off the heat and mix it in.
  • Add the mashed potatoes and mix everything well.
  • Take a lemon sized ball of the dough and roll it using a rolling pin into a 4″ size roti. You might have to use some flour to the rolling surface so that the dough doesn’t stick to it. Now Take a lemon sized ball of the filling and keep it in the middle.
  • Bring the edges together so that the filling gets enclosed inside the dough.
  • Seal the edges by pinching together so that the filling doesn’t come outside.

    Roll this again using some flour to a big paratha.

    Cook the paratha in heated pan and brush it with some ghee. While the paratha is cooking on the stove, you can start rolling and filling the next paratha.

    Once the bottom is cooked, flip it and cook the other side too. Brush with more ghee if you prefer. Take off the heat once it’s cooked and set aside. Repeat with the rest of the dough.

  • Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the recipe from other Blogging Marathoners.

    Blackberry Parfait

    BM# 100: Week 2, Day 2
    Theme : 3 
    ingredient Dishes

    Breakfast is not an elaborate meal at my place. It’s almost always a bowl of cereal or oatmeal. I like something with a bit of liquid in it than having to chew before you are completely awake (even if it’s 10 in the morning). The idea is I will close my eyes, drink it down and then wake up later when I have to deal with the day.

    You can see why a yogurt based parfait would work well here. It ticks off all the boxes for me. There is smoothness from the yogurt, a bit of crunch from muesli or granola, bit of sweetness from the berries, there is color, there is contrast and most importantly, it is ridiculously easy to make. Any jam would work instead of real fruit too. A spoon of sugar or salt is allowed for this theme, so I decided to add it to the berries. It’s optional and if you are using a jam, you won’t need it anyway.

    Scroll down for the recipe.

    Ingredients:

      1/2 cup yogurt*
      3 tablespoons granola/muesli
      8-10 blackberries
      1 teaspoon sugar, optional

    Method:

    1. Mix sugar with the berries and microwave for 20-30 seconds. Cool slightly and mash it down with the back of a spoon.
    2. Spoon some of this on the bottom of a glass. Top with a tablespoon of muesli or granola. Add some of the yogurt. Repeat the layers until it reaches the top. Mine was a small glass so it took only two layers of each.
    3. Top with muesli and serve cold.

    Note:

    *You can sweeten the yogurt as well with a spoon or two of sugar. I didn’t do it.

    Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM#100

    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