Saturday, 31 March 2012

Phanna Thaak (Seasoned Buttermilk - Mangalore style)

A refreshing end to any heavy meal.
Seasoned buttermilk or "Phana Thaak" as its popularly called, is easy to make too.
Buttermilk is originally the liquid left behind after churning butter out of cream.
But since most people buy ready made butter, we normally do not get buttermilk at home.
So the next easiest option would be to use curds.

Friday, 30 March 2012

Bibbe Song (Cashewnuts in Tangy Chilli Gravy)

Here is a Classic Raw Cashewnut Spicy curry called "Bibbe Song" which is sure to make your taste buds sing.
Cashew nuts are significant sources of iron (essential for red blood cell function and enzyme activity), magnesium (promotes energy release and bone growth), phosphorus (builds bones and teeth), zinc (essential to digestion and metabolism) and selenium (has important antioxidant properties, thus protecting the body from cancer).
To reduce sodium and added fats in the diet, avoid salted, oil-roasted cashew nuts.
The healthiest form would be raw cashew nuts or dry roasted cashew nuts.
"Song" has no specific meaning in Konkani, but this dish definitely makes your taste buds sing. As this curry dates back to the time when India was ruled by the British, I guess the  educated English speaking Konkanis called this kind of dish as "Song".

This dish goes well with Puri's, Shevai (Indian rice noodles), chapatis and even rice and dal.
This dish is served in almost all weddings in the Coastal region of Karnataka during summer.
"Puri and Bibbe Song" or "Shevai and Bibbe Song" (Indian rice noodles), is a classic combination not to be missed.

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Hinga Mirsang (Hot n Sour Green Chilles n Tomatoes)

Green chillies contains six times the amount of vitamin C as a single orange. They also have high amounts of the antioxidant beta-carotene, which supports the cardiovascular system, as well as helps maintain the health of the skin, eyes and immune system. Green chilies are a good source of iron and potassium. 
Green tomato benefits include three times the amount of calcium as the red tomato. They also contain slightly more vitamin C than the red tomato.
Here is a simple side dish made of green tomatoes and Green chillies which is sure to tickle your palate to the maximum. Can be eaten with rice and dal, Curd rice or even with Dosas.
I learnt this dish from my Mom and Aunt.

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Crab Curry (Chilli based - Mangalore Konkani style)

Fish and seafood are rich in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, and eating fish and seafood is linked to lower rates of heart disease. Even though crabs are low in total fat, they are still a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. A three-ounce portion of cooked crab has about 300-500 milligrams of the healthy fats. That's about the daily amount recommended for healthy people. Crabs are also a lean protein source. And although they do contain cholesterol, crabs are very low in saturated fat, which is more important than cholesterol for maintaining healthy blood lipids.
Here is a dish made using blue crabs, which I learnt from my Mom and aunt.
A favourite among all of us especially kids.
Use the non-spicy red chilli powder if required, and a point to note, since crab meat is sweet and so are the red onions, the dish will not be as spicy as it looks. 

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Madgane' (Chana Dal payasam or Split Chickpeas Dessert)

"Madgane'" or "Chana dal payasam" is a dessert made of Split Chickpeas and Jaggery.
A traditional Konkani dessert made on almost all festivals and functions.
Chana dal or Split Bengal grams, is baby chickpeas that have been split and polished. They look and taste like small kernels of sweet corn and work well in soups, salads, and rice dishes.
Chana dal is high in fiber and help to lower cholesterol.
· Apart from having a great taste, it also has a very low glycemic index, which is important for those with diabetes.
· Chickpeas are a helpful source of zinc, folate, calcium and protein
· Chickpeas are low in fat and most of it is polyunsaturated.
I learnt this dessert from my Mom, who is an expert in making this.
I have however simplified it by using readymade "Coconut milk" as compared to my Mom who makes coconut milk at home, which is a slightly tedious process.

Monday, 26 March 2012

Meloney (Melon with Honey - A Healthy Drink)

Here is a good drink for summer evenings using Muskmelon.
The muskmelon or cantaloupe, is a perfect summer fruit. It's high water content can help take care of the fluid loss that our bodies go through due to perspiration in this season. It also helps to combat the heat in the body and thus, prevents heat-related disorders during summer.
If you are someone who is constantly counting calories then you should go the muskmelon way. This fruit is good for people who want to lose weight because it isn't high in calories or sugar, and can work as a great snack for those in-between-mealtimes when hunger pulls you towards unhealthy food items.
This drink, made from Muskmelon and Honey is as healthy as it can get. Honey we all know is very good for our health and a healthy replacement for sugar.
My daughter and I created this drink and its my daughter who combined the names "Melon" and "Honey" and called it "Meloney".

Chana Ani Jeev Kadgi Soyi Bhajjile Ghashi (Chickpeas & Breadfruit in Roasted Coconut Gravy)

Here is a another dish from the Ugadi menu, 'Chickpeas and Butterfruit simmered in Roasted Coconut gravy'.
Breadfruit is low in Saturated Fat, Cholesterol and Sodium and very high in Vitamin C, Dietary Fiber and Potassium. The nutritional value of breadfruit helps you to maintain optimum health.
They are a very good source of folic acid, fiber, and manganese.They are also a good source of protein, as well as minerals such as iron, copper, zinc, and magnesium. They are good source of fiber, and can help lower cholesterol and improve blood sugar levels. This makes them a great food especially for diabetics and insulin-resistant individuals.
This dish has both Chickpeas and Breadfruit, simmered in Roasted coconut gravy and made on special days like festivals and functions.

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Batata Poha (Beaten rice with Potatoes - A High Energy Breakfast)

Another Breakfast dish for those who prefer a healthy non-fat yet easy to make breakfast.
Poha or beaten rice is healthy and full of carbohydrates so keeps you feeling full and energetic during the day.
Potatoes also contain carbohydrates so overall this breakfast is full on energy.
"Batata Poha" or Flattened or Beaten rice with Potatoes is a very famous breakfast in Maharashtra. My grand aunt who lived in Mumbai taught me to make this breakfast dish.
Do not forget to add lemon juice and lemon wedges, cause the Vitamin C in the lemon helps in the absorption of Iron from the Poha.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Charmuri Upkari (A Healthy Evening Snack made with Puffed rice)

Puffed rice are puffy rice kernels that have been steam-pressured.
Puffed rice is low in fat, and high in carbohydrates so is a healthy snack for the evening. Here is a puffed rice evening snack that is famous in Mangalore and surrounding regions. This snack is especially sold in food stalls during local festivals and food fete's across Mangalore.An easy to make, healthy snack just right for the evening.

Jeev Kadgi Podi (Breadfruit fritters)

Breadfruit provides high energy to those who eat it through its carbohydrate, mainly needed by the body for warmth and maintenance during daily activities. 
Breadfruit is a rich source of fiber.
This side dish is another delicacy prepared in the coastal region during summer especially on Ugadi.

Friday, 23 March 2012

Bibbe Upkari (Raw Cashewnut side dish)

"Bibbe Upkari" or Raw Cashew nut side dish, is a delicacy prepared for Ugadi which is almost like the beginning of the Cashew season, and then prepared in all types of functions in the Konkani community.
From protecting your heart to helping you lose weight, raw cashews provide some impressive health benefits.
Cashew nut is shaped like a “smile.” Yes, cashew nuts are good for depression, for helping to boost your moods and stabilize your thoughts.
This dish is made with Raw cashewnuts, but incase you cannot find raw cashewnuts you can use plain packed cashew nuts after soaking them in water overnight.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Ambuli Pacchadi in Konkani (Raw Mango Salad)

Raw Mango Salad or "Ambuli Pacchadi" is a very popular summer salad in Coastal belt.
Raw Mango or green mangoes have plenty of health benefits which are different from ripe mangoes. Green Mango is full of lots of vitamin C, and they are great for warding off anemia.
Green mangoes also enhances memory, guess that's why most women have better memory power since most women love green or raw mangoes.
Green Mango juice is also good for relieving sore throats.
This salad is mostly eaten as a part of a meal but can also be eaten as a evening snack and for those to love the tangy taste, it can be stuffed to make sandwiches.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Ethiopian Wot (Ethiopian Chicken)

My flair for cooking is not restricted to Indian Cuisine alone.
This dish is one of the first non-Indian curries, I learnt several years back while in Dortmund, Germany.
I remember going to this Ethiopian food joint in Dortmund, just to have a their bread called "Injera" and this tasty chicken called "Wot".I used to go this joint since "Injera" and "Wot" was the closest I could get to the Indian 'Butter naan' and 'Butter chicken'.
That Ethiopian lady made this dish so effortlessly, but yes her main ingredient was a masala just like the Indian Garam Masala, called "Berbere".
After persistently asking that lady, I found out that it had almost all the ingredients which we know and use,  but in different proportions.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Aloo Gobi (Potato n Cauliflower curry)

"Aloo" or Potato as we all know is one of the best comfort foods. Potatoes are filling, moderate in calories, and non-fattening, and are an excellent way to ensure your continued success in eating healthy.
Potatoes are an excellent source of almost every essential vitamin and mineral.
Whoever coined the phrase "the lowly potato" certainly wasn't aware of its nutrient values. And anyone who still shuns the potato thinking it is fattening is missing out on a food tailor-made for the calorie-conscious person.
So here is another famous North Indian gravy " Aloo Gobi" or "Potatoes and Cauliflower in Tomato based gravy".

Monday, 19 March 2012

Pomfret Fish Fry

"Pomfret", is my daughter's favourite fish and also is the easiest to eat.
They are found in the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans, and hence easily available everywhere.
This is a quick recipe for fried pomfrets and goes well with Porridge or Red Rice Kanji. It is a very popular side dish with the fish eating people in the coastal belt of Karnataka, Goa and Mumbai.

Kiddies Meal Combo 6 - Corn Cutlets and Tomato Rice

Tips for lunch box:
1. Boil rice in the cooker the previous night but do not open the cooker.
2. Make the corn and potato mash the previous night and keep in fridge.

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Onion Pakoda (Onion Fritters)

Onion Pakoda or Onion fritters, everybody's favourite tea time snack.
Deep fried snacks are not the healthiest of options but then once in a while, we indulge in home made deep fried snacks..
Onion is also beneficial for our health, guess thats why we use onions in most Indian dishes.The nutrients in onion can protect against cancer, fight fungi and bacteria, promote cardiovascular health, reduce high blood pressure and insulin resistance, and aid in weight loss.

Some points to remember when deep frying
  •  discard the oil once used.
  • If you think we are wasting oil, then use as little as possible, even it means frying only 2 pakodas at a time.
I know most of my friends love "Onion Pakoda" but not many make it at home since they feel it doesn't turn out as crispy at home compared to outside.
Try this recipe of mine, you will be able to make yummy Onion Pakodas as crispy as in the hotels/shops.
And I feel eating deep fried home made snacks is better than eating outside.

Thuppa Dosa (Ghee Dosa/Ghee pancakes - Mangalore/Udupi style)

Popularly known as "Thuppa Dose" or "Ghee Roast" in the Mangalore/Udupi/Kundapur belt, this is an indulgence one should give into, while travelling in that area.
Served with "Alle Chutney" or Ginger coconut chutney, its one of the best breakfast dishes we all love.
What you experience after this breakfast is pure bliss...
After repeated attempts of getting into the kitchens of one such famous hotel in Mangalore, I managed to find out the exact balance of the various ingredients in the batter.

Alle Chutney (Ginger Coconut Chutney)

One of the best chutneys that go with idlis and some types of dosa.
The Ginger Coconut chutney is also known as "Alle Chutney" in Konkani.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Karathe God Thalasini (Bitter sweet bittergourd)

Bitter gourds are very low in calories but dense with precious nutrients. It is rich in iron, contains twice the beta-carotene of broccoli, twice the calcium of spinach, and twice the potassium of a banana.
Bitter gourd also has some nutrients that are suggested as insulin replacement in some diabetic patients.
So try to include bittergourd in your diet as often as you can.
This is another classic recipe from my Mom and Aunt, this one is sure to tickle your taste buds with its bitter sweet taste.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Gaajar ka Halwa (Carrot Dessert)

"Gaajar ka Halwa" or "Carrot Dessert" is one of North India's most popular desserts.
I love it since my childhood, and nothing compares to the Gaajar Halwa made by my Mom.I learnt this dish from her.The first time I cooked this independently was while I was in Frankfurt, taking instructions from my Mom over the phone. And my friends there really enjoyed this dessert.
I know lot of friends love it but think its lot of effort, but try making it my way, its both easy and tasty.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Mutter Paneer (Green Peas with Cottage Cheese)

Mutter Paneer or Green Peas with Cottage cheese, a North Indian delicacy and a big favourite at home.
The best mutter paneer I've had till now was in a Dhaba or Roadside Shack, while driving from Patna to Darjeeling. We accidentally stopped by this place, cause the gas station guy filled "petrol" in our "diesel" car and had to be repaired. Yet the journey was very good, thanks to the lovely weather and the lovely Mutter Paneer.
The Mutter paneer was so delicious with freshly made phulkas (Indian bread), I can never forget the taste.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Sukkal Sungata Upkari (Dry Prawns - Konkani style)

Dry prawns known as "Sukkal Sungat" in konkani is easily available in most Super markets all over the world, and can be good substitute when its not easy to go out and buy fresh prawns. It can be stored in air tight containers for upto 6 months and can be cooked in less than 10 mins.
I learnt this recipe from my Mom.You can add either small pieces of potatoes or brinjal in the curry to enhance the taste.
I have used green brinjal/eggplant in this preparation.

Kiddies Meal Combo 5 - Egg Sandwich & Bisibelebath

Tips for lunch box:
1. Boil rice with dal in the cooker the previous night but do not open the cooker.
2. Par boil the veges the previous night.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Batate Saaru (Potato Rasam)

Have you heard of "Potato Rasam" ?
Am sure not..
I too was quite surprised when I heard about this rasam from my Grand Uncle/Aunt.
And then one day I was amazed when I was actually served Pototo Rasam in my Grand Aunt's house in Pune several years back.
This dish is my Grand Uncle's creation.
So simple yet so tasty, I am sure you will love it just like I do.

Monday, 12 March 2012

Tawa Fried Cauliflower (Pan Fried Cauliflower)

Cauliflower is something you might want to add to your regular diet because of its multiple health benefits. Cauliflower consumption has been studied for its cancer-preventing potential and antioxidant properties. Cauliflower contains many nutrients, making it an excellent addition to any diet. So I buy a cauliflower everyweek and make different dishes. I know lot of my friends shun from buying it since they feel its tedious to clean it. The cleaning method is given in my recipe.

Created by my mom and aunt, this dish is a favourite with all of us including the kids.
The quantiity of spice can be altered according to the tastebuds.

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Mushroom Bhutthi (Mushroom Curry - Konkani Style)

Mushrooms are one of the most nutritious foods known to us.They provide the nutritional benefits of both vegetables as well as meat, beans or grains.
They are low in calories, fat free, cholestrol free and very low in sodium. Yet they provide very important nutrients for our body.
Mushrooms is one big favourite at home for all of us, so once a week I make mushroom curry in different styles.
This recipe is the "Konkani style curry" known as "Mushroom Bhutthi".

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Poo's Favourite Lamb Curry

Lamb or mutton curry, has also been one of my favourites since childhood. But somehow I have never liked lamb curry in most restaurants, cause either its not cooked well, or too greasy/oily. So I started making curry at home.
I cook lamb in different styles, but I created and perfected this dish after a lot of trials. Now my family loves this lamb curry so much that we have stopped eating lamb in restaurants. I make this dish using only 1 tsp of any oil. It is also very easy to make since almost all the ingredients are always available in the kitchen.

Friday, 9 March 2012

Kadgi Chakko (Raw Jackfruit curry)

"Jackfruit" also known as "Kadgi" in Konkani is a very popular vegetable in Coastal Karnataka.
Available in Summer season, this vegetable is cooked is several different styles and served in almost all functions during the summer season.
This dish "Kadgi Chakko" or Raw Jackfruit dry curry or "Jackfruit Sukka" is one of my favourite gadgi dishes.
My mom is an expert in this, but somehow over the years I have managed to prepare this dish after learning from her.

Kiddies Meal Combo 4 - Paneer fritters & Chapatis and Dal

Tips for lunch box:
1. Boil dal in the cooker the previous night but do not open the cooker.
2. Cut paneer into heart shape using mould as shown.
3. Make chapati dough and keep in sealed box.
All measurements are for one child.

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Punjabi Rajma (Red Kidney beans curry - Punjabi style)

"Rajma Chawal" or "Red Kidney beans curry and white rice", one of my favourite punjabi meals.
I was never a fan of Rajma or Red Kidney beans, but from the time I ate this curry prepared by one of my newly found Punjabi friend, I have started loving this dish.
When eaten with steaming white rice it really falls in my list of comfort foods or should I say comfort meal.
So not to mention, I learnt this dish from my Punjabi friend.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Grated Carrot Salad

Grated Carrot Salad, a simple and easy to make salad.
Can be eaten as a salad during a meal or as a snack in between meals.
My daughter loves to eat it 'cause of its color. This salad is not just colourful but also healthy.

Kiddies Meal Combo 3 - Tricolor Sandwich & Peas Pulao with wgg curry or curd salad

Tips for lunch box:
1. Make rice in the cooker the previous night but do not open the cooker.
2. Puree the tomatoes the previous night and keep in fridge.
3. Par boil the peas the previous night and keep in fridge.
4. Keep mint chutney and the orange chutney ready in fridge.

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Majjige Huli (Ashgourd in Cocount & curd gravy)

"Majjige Huli" a very popular curry with the Kannadiga brahmins of Karnataka.
No festival or function is complete without this curry.
Mostly made using Ash gourd or White pumpkin, it can also be made using lady's finger.
I learnt this dish from my Mom. 

Kiddies Meal Combo 2 - Petal Parata & Potato cutlets

Tips for lunch box:
1. Make dough the previous night and keep in a sealed box.
2. Make the Paneer mix for the parata the previous day and keep in sealed box.
3. Keep the sealed boxes in fridge if its summer else they can be outside.
3. For lunch box - make a big parata and using petal mould (used for cookies) , make petal shaped paratas.
4. Make the potato mix for the cutlets the previous night and keep in fridge.

Monday, 5 March 2012

Granny's Puddi Sagle (brinjal masala dry)

Brinjal or Egg Plant, is rich in Vitamin A & B, Calcium, fibre, folic acid, sodium, vitamin C and potassium. It is also sometimes known as poor man's meat.
Brinjal however is not liked by many people, but try making this dry masala brinjals, which was made by my Granny, and trust me you will start liking brinjal rightaway.
This dish is a modified version of the so called "Ennegai" of North Karnataka.

Kiddies Meal Combo 1 - Aloo Parata and Paneer Sandwich

Tips for lunch box:
1. Make dough the previous night and keep in a sealed box.
2. Make the Potato mix the previous day and keep in sealed box.
3. Keep the sealed boxes in fridge if its summer else they can be outside.
3. For lunch box - cut into 6 equal pieces as shown.
4. Make the paneer stuffing the previous night and keep in fridge.

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Thakka Soda (Bubbly Buttermilk)

"Thakka Soda" or Aerated Buttermilk, is a drink mostly served in functions in Mangalore and surrounding places like Udupi, Karkala, Kaup etc during summer season.
Refreshing, healthy and easy to make this drink tops my list of summer drinks.

Kori Ghasi (Kundapur style Chicken curry)

"Kori Ghasi" is a very popular chicken curry in the coastal belt of Karnataka. This curry originally cooked by the Tulu or Bunt community of Karnataka, is now famous all over as "Kori Ghasi". Its usually served with Kori rotti (thin rice crisps) or steaming white rice. 
While driving from Mangalore to Goa, you can stop by any place for lunch, be it Kundapur, Kumta or Karwar, you will get to taste this curry as part of their "Chicken curry meal" or " Kori rotti meal".
Having lived in Mangalore for several years, I learnt to cook this dish from a friend's mom.

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Watermelon Crush

Watermelon crush...a very good cooler for the summer..
Watermelon is not only delicious, but very healthy too.
Here is a very easy drink made from wateremelon which is both healthy and refreshing for this summer.

Friday, 2 March 2012

Karathe Phodi (Bittergourd fritters)

'Karathe Phodi' or bittergourd fritters is one of my favourite fritters.
There is a famous saying in tulu language which says "Kanchala Etthanda, Encholu Unnoli", which means "If you have any bittergourd curry with you, you can eat a hearty meal"
Most of the bitterness of the bittergourd is removed first by peeling the skin off and then soaking it in salt water and turmeric.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Batate Humman

"Batate Humman" is a Konkani side dish. 
Potatoes simmered in mildly spiced coconut gravy with a dash of asofoetida.
A non garlic non onion gravy dish, cooked mostly on festival days when konkani people do not eat onion and garlic.
This is a very simple gravy dish which can be made with fresh or dessicated coconut.
A big favourite among most of the konkani community, but the biggest fan of this dish I know is one of my cousin, who loved this dish so much as a kid that he wanted his mom to cook large quantities of it and fill it in the well they had it in their backyard, just so that he could eat it whenever he wanted.

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