June 26, 2015

Litchi lemonade recipe - How to make lychee limbu sharbat

lychee lemonade in a serving glass
Litchi lemonade recipe - Litchi lemonade is a refreshing drink made with litchi, lemon juice and sugar. When litchis are in season I make it quite often. Try out this lemonade to treat your family and friends. Now to the recipe.

Litchi Lemonade 

Prep time : 10 mins
Cook time : 0 mins
Total time : 10 mins
Recipe type : Drinks-Beverages
Cuisine : Indian
Yield : serves 2
Author : Vidya Chandrahas

Ingredients 
  • 10 litchis
  • 1 large lemon
  • 2 glasses chilled drinking water
  • 5 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 cardamoms / elaichi, powdered

Method
  1. Wash and peel the litchis. Remove the seeds and separate the litchi flesh.
  2. Put the litchi flesh in a mixer jar. Add 1/4 cup of drinking water and blend it to a smooth paste. Set aside.
  3. Put the sugar and salt in a large bowl. Squeeze the lime in it. Mix well with a spoon. 
  4. Pour chilled drinking water and mix well till the sugar dissolves. Add the litchi paste and cardamom powder. Mix well. Serve the litchi lemonade chilled.

lychee lemonade

June 25, 2015

Curd rice | Mosaranna recipe - South Indian yogurt rice recipe

mosaranna in a serving plate
Mosranna or curd rice recipe - Curd rice or mosaranna is one of the simplest and popular rice dishes of South India. I make it quite often even with leftover rice. I prepared this mosaranna with freshly cooked rice, curd, cucumber and then tempered with my favorite tempering.  So, you can imagine what the taste of this curd rice is. The curd rice in itself is a whole meal which I relish in all seasons. When I am getting tired of cooking like making roti, sabzi, rice, curry etc. then I make curd rice with fresh curd which is not too sour. This is the most easy, healthy and scrumptious meal which goes well with all types of pickles and papads. The first morsel of the curd rice creates the desire to eat more and more. Try out this curd rice and enjoy.

Curd Rice or Mosaranna 

Prep time : 10 mins
Cook time : 30 mins
Total time : 40 mins
Recipe type : Main Course
Cuisine : Karnataka
Yield : serves 4
Author : Vidya Chandrahas

Ingredients 
  • 1 cup raw rice ( Ambemohar ) or 4 cups cooked rice
  • 2 cups thick yogurt / curd /mosaru / dahi
  • 1 large cucumber
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 1 tsp salt or as required


For the tempering
  • 1 tbsp oil or as required
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp split black grams / urad dal
  • 1 green chili, chopped
  • A generous pinch of asafoetida / hing
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 7 - 8 broken red chilies

Method
  1. Wash, peel and chop the cucumber into small pieces. Set aside.
  2. Wash the rice thoroughly and add 2 + 1/4 cups of water. ( if the rice is old, add 2 + 1/2 cups of water ) 
  3. Pressure cook till 4 - 5 whistles. When the pressure releases, remove the rice container and allow the rice to cool.  
  4. When it cools, transfer the rice to a large pan.
  5. Pour the curd on the rice.
  6. Pour 2 tbsp of milk and mix well.
  7. Add the cucumber.
  8. Add the chopped cilantro.
  9. Add a tsp of salt and mix till all the ingredients combine well.
  10. Heat oil in a small pan. Add the mustard seeds.  When mustards start spluttering, add the urad dal, saute till aromatic. 
  11. Add the green chilies and hing. Saute for a while. Add the curry leaves and red chilies. 
  12. Saute till red chilies become light brown and aromatic. Pour this tempering on above prepared curd rice.
  13. Mix well with a spoon. Add more curd if required.
  14. Serve the curd rice or mosaranna  with pickles and fried papads.

Curd rice or mosaranna - step by step pictures

1.  Wash, peel and chop the cucumber into small pieces. Set aside.
chopped cucumber

2.  Wash the rice thoroughly and add 2 + 1/4 cups of water. ( if the rice is old, add 2 + 1/2 cups of water ) Pressure cook till 4 - 5 whistles. 
3.  When the pressure releases, remove the rice container and allow the rice to cool.  When it cools, transfer the rice to a large pan.
cooked rice

4.  Pour the curd on the rice.
curd added

 5.  Pour 2 tbsp of milk and mix well.
milk added and mixed

6.  Add the cucumber.
cucumber added

 7.  Add the chopped cilantro.
cilantro added

8.  Add a tsp of salt and mix till all the ingredients combine well.
curd rice mixed

9.  Heat oil in a small pan. Add the mustard seeds.  When mustards start spluttering, add the urad dal, saute till aromatic. Add the green chilies and hing. 10.  Saute for a while. Add the curry leaves and red chilies. Saute till red chilies become light brown and aromatic. Pour this tempering on above prepared curd rice.
tempering poured

11.  Mix well with a spoon. Add more curd if required.
tempering mixed with curd rice

12.  Serve the curd rice or mosaranna  with pickles and fried papads.
curd rice in a serving plate





June 23, 2015

How to make yogurt at home - Homemade curd

yogurt image
How to make yogurt at home - Today I have come up with easy method of making yogurt at home. Yogurt or curd is one such essential item that I need everyday. I make yogurt to churn buttermilk which we need compulsorily with every meal. We also eat small amount of curd rice in the last round of the meal. 

Yogurt is superior to milk as it is in a predigested form and more easily assimilated. Conversion of milk to yogurt increases the digestibility, palatability and nutritive value. Yogurt helps to boost the immune system and assist in digestion. Yogurt is a rich source of  protein, calcium, vitamin D, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12. 

Despite its health benefits, it is also used to make varieties of raitas to serve as a side dish. Among them cucumber raita, beetroot raita, onion raita, pineapple raita and boondi raita are very famous. Buttermilk or chaas or taak is a fabulous drink served in the last round of the meal which is easily digestible. 

Besides this, varieties of lassis are prepared and served as a dessert or refreshing drink. Curd rice or mosaranna is also very popular in Southern part of India. Uses and benefits of yogurt are many. Hence, yogurt should be added to the diet.


How to make yogurt at Home 

Prep time : 5 mins
Cook time : 20 mins
Total time : 25 mins
Recipe type : Main Course
Cuisine : Indian
Yield :4 cups yogurt
Author : Vidya Chandrahas

Ingredients
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 4 tsp curd / yogurt / mosaru / dahi

Method
  1. Home made yogurt recipe with step by step pictures
  2. Boil the milk and keep it aside till it becomes lukewarm. 
  3. Remove the cream or malai formed on the surface.
  4. Pour 4 tsp of curd in another stainless steel vessel.
  5. First add 3 - 4 tbsp of milk and mix well. 
  6. Then pour the remaining lukewarm milk in it. 
  7. Mix well with a spoon till curd and milk combine well.
  8. Cover the vessel with lid and keep it aside for about 3 hours in a warm place. 
  9. Don't disturb the milk in the vessel  by moving the vessel too rapidly. 
  10. When the thick yogurt forms, keep the vessel in refrigerator so that the curd doesn't become sour.

Home made curd - step by step pictures

1.  Boil the milk and keep it aside till it becomes lukewarm. Remove the cream or malai formed on the surface.
boiled milk

2.  Pour 4 tsp of curd in another stainless steel vessel.

curd in a vessel

3.  First, add 3 - 4 tbsp of milk and mix well. 
little bit of milk added

4.  Then pour the remaining lukewarm milk in it. Mix well with a spoon till curd and milk combine well.

remaining milk added

5.  Cover the vessel with lid and keep it aside for about  3 hours in a warm place. Don't disturb the milk in the vessel  by moving the vessel too rapidly. 
cover the vessel with lid

6.  When the thick yogurt forms, keep the vessel in refrigerator so that the curd doesn't become sour.
yogurt ready to serve

yogurt picture

Note 
  • For quick and effective curdling, use lukewarm milk.
  • Time for preparation of curd varies depending upon the atmosphere.
  • During summer milk curdles fast and the curd is ready within a couple of hours, however, during winter  it takes little bit of more time.

June 19, 2015

Fried namkeen moong dal recipe - Fried green gram dal

namkeen moongdal in a bowl
Fried namkeen moong dal recipe - Fried namkeen moong dal is a munching snack which can be enjoyed at any time. I am neither  craving for fried snacks nor celebrating any occasion. I had a cup of split green grams in box and wanted to finish it with a nice way before it gets spoiled. This is the reason why I have prepared this snack. Every evening we need something crunchy along with tea or coffee.  Fried moong dal is a healthy snack which absorbs very less oil on frying. Few days back I had posted fried peanuts and corn flakes chivda which is also a crunchy tea time snack. For a change, try out this fried namkeen moong dal to treat your family.

Fried Namkeen Moong Dal 

Prep time : 4 hrs + 5 mins
Cook time : 25 mins
Total time : 4 hrs 30 mins
Recipe type : Snacks
Cuisine : Indian
Yield : 2 cups
Author : Vidya Chandrahas

Ingredients 
  • 1 cup split green grams / moong dal
  • A generous pinch of alum powder / phitkari / turti
  • Oil for frying
  • Salt as required

Method
  1. Handpick the moong dal and put them in a large bowl.
  2. Rinse thoroughly and soak in sufficient water along with a pinch of alum. Keep it aside for 4 hours.
  3. After 4 hours, drain the water through a strainer and keep it aside for 15 minutes.
  4. Heat sufficient oil in a frying pan. Put fistful of moong dal in a stainless steel mesh strainer. 
  5. Place this strainer in the boiling oil and fry on medium flame till the moong dal floats and become crispy.
  6. Lift the strainer and drain oil in the same pan.
  7. Transfer the fried moong dal on an absorbent paper. Repeat the same procedure with remaining moong dal. 
  8. Once done, sprinkle some salt on the fried moong dal and mix well. Allow them to cool.
  9. Store the fried namkeen moong dal in an airtight container and serve.

Fried namkeen moong dal - step by step pictures

1.  Handpick the moong dal and put them in a large bowl.
handpick the moong dal

2.  Rinse thoroughly and soak in sufficient water along with a pinch of alum.
Keep it aside for 4 hours.
rinse and saok moong dal

3.  After 4 hours, drain the water through a strainer and keep it aside for 15 minutes.
drain water

4.  Heat sufficient oil in a frying pan. Put fistful of moong dal in a stainless steel mesh strainer. 
5.  Place this strainer in the boiling oil and fry on medium flame till the moong dal floats and become crispy.
frying moong dal

6.  Lift the strainer and drain oil in the same pan.
drain the oil

7.  Transfer the fried moong dal on an absorbent paper. Repeat the same procedure with remaining moong dal. Once done, sprinkle some salt on the fried moong dal and mix well. Allow them to cool.
fried moong dal

8.  Store the fried namkeen moong dal in an airtight container and serve.
store ina container


June 18, 2015

Kadai zucchini capsicum - zucchini recipe

stir fry in a plate
Kadai zucchini capsicum recipe - Today I am sharing a simple and easy side dish recipe prepared with zucchini and capsicum. It pairs well with Maharashtrian cuisine such as amti and dal tadka . This is one of the easy dishes to prepare in less time.

This kadai sabzi got the flavor from the spice powder, garlic and capsicums. Zucchini enhances the taste and its nutrient value. I did not add any water. Both vegetables have enough moisture and hence they  cook in its own juices. Instead of red capsicum, green capsicum can also be used in this dish.

Kadai Zucchini Capsicum 

Prep time : 10 mins
Cook time : 10 mins
Total time : 20 mins
Recipe type : Side dish
Cuisine : Indian
Yield : serves 2 
Author : Vidya Chandrahas

Ingredients 
  • 1 large zucchini
  • 2 red capsicums / bell pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cumin seeds powder / jeera
  • 1/2 tsp coriander seeds powder
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tbsp fresh corianders
  • Salt to taste


For the tempering
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • A pinch of mustard seeds
  • A pinch of cumin seeds / jeera
  • A pinch of asafoetida powder / hing
  • 7- 8 flakes garlic / lasun, peeled, crushed
  • 1 sprig curry leaves

Method
  1. Kadai zucchini capsicum (bell pepper) recipe with step by step pictures
  2. Wash the capsicums and zucchini. Pat to dry.
  3. Peel the zucchini and cut it into cubes. Cut the capsicum into two halves, chop off the rind and remove the seeds. Then cut it into medium sized pieces.
  4. Heat oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds. When start spluttering,  add the jeera and allow to crackle. 
  5. Add the hing and curry leaves and saute for a while. 
  6. Add the garlic and stir till it releases nice aroma. 
  7. Add the zucchini, capsicums, salt and stir to combine. 
  8. Cook covered on a low flame till the zucchini become soft. Let it cook in its own moisture. Do not add water.
  9. Once the zucchini become soft, add the chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, jeera powder and garam masala. Saute for 3 - 4 minutes. 
  10. Add chopped fresh corianders and mix well. 
  11. Serve hot with chapati, rice and amti or dal tadka.

Kadai zucchini capsicum - step by step pictures

1.  Wash the capsicums and zucchini. Pat to dry.
Zucchini capsicums

2.  Peel the zucchini and cut it into cubes. Cut the capsicum into two halves, chop off the rind and remove the seeds. Then cut it into medium sized pieces.
chopped capsicums and zucchini

3.  Heat oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds. When start spluttering,  add the jeera and allow to crackle. Add the hing and curry leaves and saute for a while. Add the garlic and stir till it releases nice aroma. Add the zucchini, capsicums, salt and stir to combine. 
tempering

4.  Cook covered on a low flame till the zucchini become soft. Let it cook in its own moisture. Do not add water.
cooking in a pan

5.  Once the zucchini become soft, add the chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, jeera powder and garam masala. Saute for 3 - 4 minutes. 
spice powder added

6.  Add chopped fresh corianders and mix well. 
fresh coriander added

7.  Serve hot with chapati, rice and aamti or dal tadka.
stir fry image

June 16, 2015

Sambar powder recipe - Sambar masala recipe

samabr powder
Sambar powder or sambar masala recipe - South Indian Idly and sambar is world famous. The key secret of tasty sambar depends upon the sambar powder that is used to make it. There are several versions of preparation of sambar powder. The recipe varies from person to person. 

This sambar powder recipe is my family's traditional recipe that we have been using since several years. It is the perfect blend of spices that  give out a perfect sambar flavor which creates a desire to eat more and more idly and dosa with it. In general, sambar powder is made using some dry coconut. 

But, I haven't prepared it with dry coconut to increase the shelf life. If you would like to have a flavor of coconut in your sambar, you may add half a cup of roasted dry coconut in this recipe. Otherwise, you may use fresh coconut paste while preparing the sambar. 

I have also used a small quantity of byadagi red chilies so that the sambar powder is not very spicy, as small kids do not like the hot chili taste. If spicy taste is required, chili powder can be adjusted  to suit the taste while preparing the sambar.

Sambar Masala or Sambar Powder 

Prep time : 20 mins
Cook time : 45 mins
Total time : 1 hr 5 mins
Recipe type : Sambar Powder
Cuisine : South Indian
Yield : 10 cups 
Author : Vidya Chandrahas

Ingredients 
  • 2 + 3/4  cups split bengal gram / chana dal
  • 1 + 1/3 cups split black grams / urad dal
  • 2 + 3/4 cups coriander seeds
  • 1+1/3 cups cumin seeds / jeera
  • 1/2 cup fenugreek seeds / methi
  • 2 tbsp black pepper
  • 12 X 5" cinnamon /  dalchini
  • 60 cloves / lavang
  • 5 tsp asafoetida powder / hing powder
  • 2 + 1/2 tbsp turneric powder / haldi
  • 40 dry red chilies (preferably byadadgi)
  • 2 cups curry leaves
  • 1/2 cup oil

Method
  1. South Indian sambar powder recipe with step by step pictures
  2. Handpick and clean the chana dal. Roast the chana dal in a pan on low flame till they become crisp. Roast in 2 batches. Set aside.
  3. Handpick and clean the urad dal. Roast the urad dal in the same pan on low flame till crisp. Set aside.
  4. Handpick and clean the coriander seeds. In the same pan, on low flame, roast the coriander seeds till they become  warm. Set aside.
  5. Handpick and clean the jeera. In the same pan, on low flame, roast the jeera till they become warm. Set aside.
  6. Heat little bit of oil in a small pan and fry the fenugreek seeds (methi dana) till aromatic and golden brown. Set aside.
  7. Heat little bit of oil in the same pan and fry the lavang, dalchini and black pepper separately  on low flame until they turn crisp and aromatic. Set aside.
  8. Heat little bit of oil in the same pan and fry dry red chilies on low flame until crisp and golden brown. Set aside.
  9. In the meantime, wash and spread  the curry leaves on a thin cloth and allow them to dry. 
  10. When the leaves dried, heat some oil in the same pan. Fry the curry leaves on low flame till they become crisp. Set aside.
  11. Combine together all the roasted and fried ingredients and allow  it to cool.
  12. Put the ingredients in a mixer jar. Add asafoetida (hing) powder and turmeric powder. Blend it to a fine powder to make a smooth sambar powder. Blend it in 2 - 3 batches. 
  13. Transfer the sambar powder to an airtight container and close with a tight lid. 
  14. This sambar powder or sambar masala can be stored for about a year.


Sambar powder or Sambar masala - step by step pictures

1.  Handpick and clean the chana dal. Roast the chana dal in a pan on low flame till they become crisp. Roast in 2 batches. Set aside.
roasted chana dal

2.  Handpick and clean the urad dal. Roast the urad dal in the same pan on low flame till crisp. Set aside.
roasted urad dal

3.  Handpick and clean the coriander seeds. In the same pan, on low flame, roast the coriander seeds till they become  warm. Set aside.
roasted coriander seeds

4.  Handpick and clean the jeera. In the same pan, on low flame, roast the jeera till they become warm. Set aside.
roasted jeera

5.  Heat little bit of oil in a small pan and fry the fenugreek seeds (methi dana) till aromatic and golden brown. Set aside.
fried methi

6.  Heat little bit of oil in the same pan and fry the lavang, dalchini and black pepper separately  on low flame until they turn crisp and aromatic. Set aside.
fried spices

7.  Heat little bit of oil in the same pan and fry dry red chilies on low flame until crisp and golden brown. Set aside.
fried red chillies

8.  In the meantime, wash and spread  the curry leaves on a thin cloth and allow them to dry. When the leaves dried, heat some oil in the same pan. Fry the curry leaves on low flame till they become crisp. Set aside.
fried curry leaves

9.  Combine together all the roasted and fried ingredients and allow  it to cool.
combined all ingredients


10.  Put the ingredients in a mixer jar. Add asafoetida (hing) powder and turmeric powder. Blend it to a fine powder to make a smooth sambar powder. Blend it in 2 - 3 batches. 
11.  Transfer the sambar powder to an airtight container and close with a tight lid. This sambar powder or sambar masala can be stored for about a year.
  sambar powder
sambar powder



June 14, 2015

How to make peanut powder - Shengdanyachi koot

peanut powder in a bottle
Shengdanyachi koot or peanut powder recipe - I adore the Maharashtrian cuisine which is very unique and distinct. Many dishes are prepared using peanut powder as key ingredient. I have been making peanut powder based dishes for the past several years. So, I store home made peanut powder and use them as and when required. This powder is essential for dishes like bharli vaangi, bharli mirchi, bharli bhindi, bhrali karli, bharli dhodka, sabudanyachi khichdi, sabudana batata thali peeth, sabudana batata vada, kande pohe, susla, shengdanyachi chutney etc.


Shengdanyachi Koot-Ground Nut Powder

Prep time : 10 mins
Cook time : 20 mins
Total time : 30 mins
Recipe type :  Powder
Cuisine : Maharashtra
Yield : 4 cups 
Author : Vidya Chandrahas

Ingredients 
  • 2 cups peanuts / ground nuts / shenga

Method

  1. Handpick the peanuts and set aside. Heat a pan or kadai and roast the peanuts till crisp on low flame. Roast in 2 batches.
  2. Remove  into a plate and allow to cool.
  3. Then transfer the roasted peanuts onto a new paper.
  4. Take a rolling pin and gently roll it on the roasted peanuts to separate the husks.
  5. Transfer the peanuts along  with husks into a supli. Now  shake the peanuts and husks, blow lightly over the supli by shaking it slightly and separate the husks.
  6. Separate the husked peanuts.
  7. Put the husked peanuts to a mixer jar. Grind it in 2 batches to make a slightly coarse powder.
  8. Transfer the shengdanyachi koot to an airtight container and store. Use the shengdanyachi koot as and when required.

Shengdanyachi koot - step by step pictures


1.  Handpick the peanuts and set aside. Heat a pan or kadai and roast the peanuts till crisp on low flame. Roast in 2 batches.
roasting peanuts

2.  Remove  into a plate and allow to cool.
roasted peanuts

3.  Then transfer the roasted peanuts onto a new paper.
roasted peanuts

4.  Take a rolling pin and gently roll it on the roasted peanuts to separate the husks.
rolling with a roller pin

5.  Transfer the peanuts along  with husks into a supli. Now  shake the peanuts and husks, blow lightly over the supli by shaking it slightly and sperate the husks as shown below.
peanuts in supli

6.  Separate the husked peanuts.
husked peanuts

7.  Put the husked peanuts to a mixer jar. Grind it in 2 batches to make a slightly coarse powder.
peanuts in a mixer jar

8.  Transfer the peanut powder to an airtight container and store. Use the shengdanyachi koot  as and when required.
peanut powder
peanut powder in an airtight container


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