Tuesday, July 14, 2015


Falafel with Tzatziki Dip

Ground Chickpeas mixed with spices and shallow fried and served with a nice dipping sauce makes a yummy veggie snack. It can also be served with Pita bread to make a whole meal.

Ingredients: Quantity
Chickpeas* 1 cup
Onions finely Chopped 1/4 cup
Garlic minced 2 nos
Pepper Powder** 1/2 tsp
Chili Powder** 1 tsp
Coriander Powder 1 tsp
Cumin Powder 1/2 tsp
Salt To taste
Cilantro and/or Parsley 2 tbsp
Baking Powder 1/2 tsp
All purpose flour*** 1 tbsp + extra for dusting
Vegetable Oil For shallow frying
For Tzatziki Dip: Quantity
Cucumber Peeled & grated and water Strained 1 nos
Greek Yogurt/Thick Yogurt 1/2 cup
Sour Cream 1/2 cup
Dill Leaves 2 tbsp
Salt To taste
Garlic Powder 1/2 tsp
Lemon Juice 1-2 tsp

1) Soak the chickpeas for a couple of hours or overnight and pressure cook until well done. Smash them into a coarse to fine paste, without any large pieces.
2) Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan and add onions and garlic and sauté until the onions turn translucent.
3) Add the sautéed onions and garlic into the smashed chickpeas and add the spices, chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, pepper powder and chopped cilantro/parsley.
4) Add one tbsp of all purpose flour and baking soda. Adjust salt as required. Make equal sized balls of the prepared chickpeas and shape into patties and dust it with all purpose flour
5) **** Meanwhile heat enough oil to shallow fry in a pan and shallow fry the prepared patties in the medium hot oil for couple of min's and turn sides and let it cook for a couple of more min's (2-4 min's approximately)#.
6) Serve hot with Tzatziki Dipping sauce.
7) For the Tzatziki dipping sauce, just mix all the ingredients mentioned in Tzatziki Dip.

Shallow Fry

Note: * You can replace the dry chickpeas and the cooking process with one can chickpeas.
** Adjust chili powder and pepper powder according to your taste.
*** You can use breadcrumbs and egg wash instead of all purpose flour esp. it is good when oven roasted.
**** You also oven roast instead of shallow frying. Bake at 375°F for 12-15 min's on each side and broil for 1-2 min's.
# Shallow fry timing varies on the size of the patties. Experiment with one or two and check if they are cooked well.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Dry Fruits Milkshake

Dry Fruits and Nuts Milkshake

I tried to make this dry fruits and nuts milkshake with ice cream to satisfy my carving for Fruit Shop's (on Greams road, Chennai) Jughead special. Thought not exactly the same one as I am not sure what gets into Jughead special, the one I tried was a bit similar to it in taste and texture.

Ingredients: Quantity
Almonds (Soaked and peeled) 5-6 nos
Cashew 3-5 nos
Pistachios (shells and skin peeled) 3-4 nos
Walnuts (shells and skin peeled) (optional) 1-2 nos
Raisins 3-4 nos
Dates Deseeded 2-3 nos
Dried Figs 1-2 nos
Sugar/honey (optional)* 1-2 tsp
Milk 1 cup
Ice Cream (Preferably Vanilla) 1-2 scoops
Crushed Ice(optional) 3-4 tbsp

1) Add 1/4 cup milk and all the nuts and dry fruits and blend into a paste (Not very coarse or not super fine).
2) Add the remaining milk and blend for a couple of seconds.
3) Add the ice cream and crushed ice (if using) and just pulse it to blend well.
4) This holds good into a large serving cup. Serve chill.

Note: * You need not use sugar/honey. The dry fruits and ice cream add enough sweet taste to the milkshake.
** You can use all the nuts and dry fruits or just mix and match of your own choice.
*** You can add different flavors like cardamom powder or saffron soaked in milk.
**** You can use almond milk instead of milk.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Strawberry Granita

Strawberry Granita

Cool Strawberry Granita tastes even better during a terrible hot summer day. It is made with simple ingredients but the process and freezing consumes some time.

Ingredients: Quantity
Fresh Strawberry 3 cups
Sugar 1 Cup (or according to taste)
Water 1 Cup
Lemon Juice 1-2 tbsp

1) Blend the chopped strawberries, water, lemon juice and sugar together.
2) Place it in a strainer and strain it. Discard the seeds and have a smooth strawberry mixture.
3) Add the strawberry mixture into a big box(freezer safe) and freeze it for 40-45 min's.
4) Take it out of the freezer when it starts to freeze on the sides and still wobbly at the center. Use a fork and scrape the frozen parts from the sides to the center and return back to the freezer. Make sure to scrape the entire mixture well.
5) Repeat the process in step-4 every 30-40 min's for a couple of times. Freeze it for couple of hours or overnight.
6) Remove from freezer and scoop the strawberry granules into a cup and serve immediately. You can return the box into the freezer and use it within a couple of days.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Fish Fingers

Fish Fingers - South Indian Style

The fish fingers served at Anjappar has been our favorite dish. As the kids enjoy finger foods, I had tried this fish fingers which turned out quite tasty. This fish finger is marinated with south Indian masala.

Ingredients: Quantity
Firm boneless fish cut finger size 10-12 nos
Egg 1 nos
Bread Crumbs 1/2 to 1 cup (As required)
Oil For Deep Frying
For Marinade:
Turmeric Powder 1 tsp
Chili Powder 1 tsp
Coriander Powder 1 tsp
Cumin Powder 1/4 tsp
Pepper Powder 1 tsp
Garam Masala 1/4 tsp
Mustard Powder (Optional) 1/4 tsp
All purpose flour 2 tsp
Lemon Juice 2 tsp
Salt To taste
Mayonnaise To serve

1) Mix all the ingredients listed for marinade and apply on the cut and cleaned fish fingers and marinate it for 15-20 min's.
2) Beat the egg in a small bowl and spread the bread crumbs on a plate.
3) Heat oil in a shallow pan. Meanwhile prepare the fish fingers for frying.
4) Take the marinated fish fingers and dip them in the egg wash and then roll it on the bread crumbs so that they are in cylindrical shape.
5) Fry them in the heated oil for 4-6 min's or until cooked thoroughly. Make sure to put the oil on medium heat, otherwise the bread crumbs will be overcooked and the fish undercooked.
6) Serve hot with mayonnaise.

Thursday, April 09, 2015

Podi Sambar

Podi Sambar for Tiffin

Podi Sambar is cooked with fresh ground spices and good to be served with Tiffin varieties like idly, dosa, vada and upma. This is my mother's recipe and I just love this one. This can be made as a simple onion sambar or we can add vegetables.

Ingredients: Quantity
Toor Dal 1 cup
Onions finely chopped 2 nos
Tomatoes finely chopped 2-3 nos
Tamarind paste 2 tbsp
Turmeric Powder 1 tsp
Salt To taste
Oil 1-2 tbsp
Spice Powder*:
Red Chili 6-8 nos
Coriander Seeds 1/4 cup
Cumin Seeds 1 tbsp
Black Pepper 1 tbsp
Fenugreek Seeds 1/2 tbsp
Asafoetida 1/4 tsp
Oil 1/2 tsp
Mustard Seeds 1 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1 tsp
Urad Dal 1 tsp
Curry Leaves 1-2 strands
Dried Red Chili broken 1-2 nos
Asafoetida a pinch
Onion Vadagam (Optional) 1 tsp
Oil 1 tsp
Coriander Leaves To Garnish

1) Cook dal in a pressure cooker with 2 cups water, turmeric powder, salt and a pinch of asafoetida and cook upto 2-3 whistles.
2) Add oil in a saucepan and sauté the onions and let them caramelize.
3) Meanwhile dry roast all the ingredients except red chilies for spice powder. Add oil and roast the red chilies. Blend them into a coarse powder and set aside.
4) Once the onions caramelize, add salt and spice powder and sauté for 1-2 min's.
5) Add the tomatoes and sauté for a min and let it cook for 5-6 min's, then add the tamarind paste and little water, cover and let it cook for few more min's.
6) Add the cooked dal and let it cook for 3-4 min's.
7) Meanwhile in a small pan heat oil and add all the ingredients for tempering and once the mustard sputter add it to the cooked sambar and garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with your favorite tiffin variety.

Sambar can be made slightly thick or thin in consistency, depending on the main dish you serve with. You can add more water and adjust spices and salt in step-5.
Note:* You need not add the entire spice powder to the dish. You can preserve the remaining powder in an air tight container for upto a month.
You can add vegetables like carrot, beans, potato at step-4, once the onions caramelize and let them cook until the vegetables are cooked and tender in step-5.

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Garlic and herb Roasted Salmon

Roasted Salmon with Garlic and Herbs

Roasted Salmon with garlic and herbs is very simple and easy to cook with few ingredients. You can serve it with any roasted veggies or with rice and a dipping sauce.

Ingredients: Quantity
Salmon without skin 1 lb (3-4 pieces)
Garlic powder 1/2 tsp
Paprika 1/2 tsp
Pepper To taste
Salt To taste
Dried Parsley 2 tsp
Dried Dill 1 tsp
Lemon Juice 1-2 tsp
Olive Oil 1 tbsp
Turmeric Powder (Optional)* 1/2 tsp

1) Preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with foil or spray with cooking spray/oil.
2) Clean the Salmon and pat dry with a kitchen towel.
3) Mix the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic powder, paprika, salt, pepper, dried herbs and turmeric powder (if using). Apply this mixture on the Salmon. Make sure it is coated thoroughly on all sides. Let is marinate for 10-15 min's.
4) Line them on the baking sheet and roast for 20-25 min's, then broil on high for 1-2 min's on each side until they turn crisp**.
5) Serve hot with roasted veggies (like broccoli or zucchini or squash or capsicum) or Corn Rice and with any dipping sauce like ranch or honey mustard.

Note: * I prefer to use Turmeric powder in most of the sea food recipes to get rid of the smell.
** Cooking time varies by -5 to +5 min's based on the thickness and size of the Salmon.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Corn Rice

Corn Citrus Rice with Herbs

Corn Citrus Rice with herbs is with simple flavors, yet tasty and easy to cook. It is the kind of rice cooked and served in restaurants. It is usually served with roasted or grilled or baked or broiled Chicken or Fish or Salmon. I have tried to cook the rice similar to the rice served in Chili's, which is served along with beans and chicken or fish.

Ingredients: Quantity
Long grain rice 2 cups
Corn Kernels Canned/Cooked 1/2 cup
Onions finely chopped 1/4 cup
Garlic crushed 3-4 nos
Cilantro Chopped 1-2 tbsp
Parsley Chopped 1-2 tbsp
Lemon juice 2-3 tbsp
Salt To taste
Pepper 1 tsp
Chicken Stock (Optional) 4 cups
Olive oil/Butter 1-2 tbsp

1) Wash and soak rice for 5-10 min's and set aside.
2) Heat oil in a wok or pan and add the onions and garlic and sauté until the onions are caramelized.
3) Drain and add the rice and sauté (lightly without breaking or smashing the rice) for 2-3 min's.
4) Add the corn, cilantro, parsley, pepper and sauté for 1 more min and then add the chicken stock or water and adjust salt. Let it cook for 15 min's or until the rice is well cooked.
5) Add lemon juice and serve with roasted or baked fish/salmon/chicken or vegetables.

Note: For a more zesty flavor, you can add the lemon zest and one tbsp of butter.