Maa Inti Vanta

Namaste,…Swagatam,..suswagatam….Welcome to Maa Inti Vanta and enjoy my dishes

Aavadalu Monday, March, 5, 2007

Filed under: Andhra Bhojanam — coolpepper @ 8:07 pm

                                                            I like to start the A –Z of typical Andhra food. This is inspiration I got from Nupur. I think its good start and hope I ll continue it and finish it properly.
Aavadalu :

What is this?
Aavdalu is a yogurt based snack in Andhra Pradesh. It is also called as Perugu garelu. It is similar to the famous north Indian snack – Dahi vada.

                         Aavadalu

                                              Aavadalu garnished with coriander leaves

Vada/Garelu : Its a Indian snack shaped like doughnut and made from black gram lentils.
When is it made?
Garelu/vada is the mandatory first course of any festive meal and also during the guest visits.

How is it different from dahi vada?
The basic idea of either dahi vada or Aavadalu is same – The hot deep fried vadas/garelu are put in thick beaten yogurt. The difference is – in aavadalu, the blackgram lentil`s vada/garelu are dipped in a seasoned yogurt. The yogurt is seasoned with blackgram lentil, bengalgram, mustard seeds, green chilli, and curry leaves. Whereas in dahi vada, the vadas/garelu are dipped in a plain yogurt, and topped with crushed black pepper, chat masala, coriander leaves, etc..

Proverb associated with garelu:
                                                    “Thinte garelu thinali, vinte bharatam vinali”
This is very popular saying/proverb in Andhra. This means “Either you have to eat garelu or have to listen bharatam.”  Bharatam/Mahabharat is a Sacred and India’s greatest epic. This dish is related with the epic for the reason of its taste, a heavenly taste to say.

How is it served?
Whether it’s a dahi vada or aavadalu, they have to be soaked( in yogurt) for atleast 2 hours before serving. Can be served chilled or at room temperature( as long as the yogurt doesn t turn sour).

The funny explanation that my grandmom gave to me about the name aavadalu when I was kid 

 “Ee vadalu kadu kaabatti aa vadalu.” I hope telugu friends have understood this. The meaning goes like this :
Ee = These ; Vadalu = Plural form for vada ; Kadu = No/not ; Kaabatti = so ; Aa = Those ;  – “Not these vadas so that vadas. She meant by these vadas are the normal vadas that we prepare.
She also told me that, in olden days, when there was no fridge, this method was used to avoid throwing away of leftover vadas that were made. Vadas/ Garelu was/is the mandatory first course of any festive meal and also during the guest visits. ” Hope this is not a funny explanation.

This is my entry to VCC Q4 – You can cook for FAHC Campaign

Recipe :
Source – Grandmom
Makes – 7 – 8 medium size

Things needed for recipe :
For Vada/garelu :

Blackgram lentils – 1 cup
Ginger – Small piece
Green chillies – 2-3 finely chopped (acc to ur taste buds)
Cumin seeds – 1-2 tspn
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

For seasoning:

Curd – 2 – 3 cups
Blackgram lentils – 1 tspn
Bengalgram – 1 tspn
Mutard seeds – 1/2 tspn
Green chillies – 1 finely chopped
Curry leaves – 7-10 leaves
Turmeric powder a pinch
Coriander leaves for garnishing

How do we prepare :
1. Soak the blackgram lentils for 4-5 hours.
2. Clean them well and grind to paste by adding ginger and little salt. Remember it should be a tight paste.So do not add water.
3.Now remove from the grinder , add jeera, finey chopped green chillies. You can also salt at this point if you feel it to be less salty.

Vada/Garelu batter  Vada / garelu Batter with cumin seeds – Just before frying
4.Take a deep frying vessel and add enough oil for deep frying.

 Batter made into doughnut shape 5. Wet your hands with water and take a lemon sized ball and flatten it into a vada on a greased sheet. Make a hole in the centre of the vada.

Getting fried 7. Slowly drop it into the hot oil carefully and fry it on both sides on medium heat to a     golden brown colour.

Vada/garelu in seasoned yogurt8.Immediately drop them into the seasoned yogurt.

9.Garnish with coriander leaves
Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Seasoning :

Ingredients needed for seasonig1. Heat the oil in a pan, add blackgram lentils, bengal gram, mustard seeds, green chill and turmeric powder. When mustard seeds pop, add curry leaves.
Seasoning, yogurt2. Switch off the stove and add this seasoning to the thick beaten yogurt. Add salt to taste

                          Aavadalu1

                                             Aavadalu garnished with coriander leaves

Notes:
1. Do not use sweetened yogurt. I have used dried curry leaves
2.  This dish can be served chilled or at room temperature but remember the yogurt should not turn sour.

 

Coriander-Tomato Chutney Saturday, March, 3, 2007

Filed under: Chutneys — coolpepper @ 12:54 am

                                                      This is my entry to weekend herb blogging.. The three important herbs which come to my mind are Coriander leaves, Curry leaves and Mint leaves. I can`t imagine preparing food without curry leaves and coriander leaves back home in India. In India, these are available year around with very nominal prices. Particularly in villages, every household will have a curry leaf tree, a small pot for mint and coriander leaves. I still remember my grandmom calling me from the kitchen and asking me to get the fresh curry leaves and coriander leaves from the garden. I used to obey her, and used to pluck the fresh greens from the garden and used to give to my grandmom. This was my daily routine every morning in every visit to her place. Coming to my mom, she has a small pot for coriander leaves n mint leaves in her apartment balcony.

                        But after coming to Tokyo, I started cooking with dry curry leaves which I always carry from India. And slowly got used with the curries without coriander leaves and particularly no mint leaves in Biryanis L. For me, these became seasonal greens.

                        Now, here its season for mint and coriander. Now I can blog on one of these herbs. I chose coriander leaves for my first weekend herb blogging

A little I know and read about coriander leaves:

Coriander is considered both an herb and a spice since both its leaves and its seeds are used as a seasoning condiment. Fresh coriander leaves are more commonly known as cilantro and bear a strong resemblance to Italian flat leaf parsley. This is not surprising owing to the fact that they belong to the same plant family. All parts of the plant, leaves, fruits (coriander fruits are often referred as seeds) , and root are edibleThe root of the plant is mostly used in Thailand. The plants develop leaves of two different shapesThe base leaves are broad and are reputed for the better flavorLeaves attached to the stems have a pinnate shape, and their flavor is said to be less fresh. Coriander, also commonly called cilantro in North America. Coriander is commonly used in South Asian, Chinese, South East Asian, African cuisines.

Purchasing and storing  :

1.Fresh coriander leaves should look vibrantly fresh and be deep green in color and should show no sign of yellowing and wilting. Try to buy coriander with their roots still attached. If you want to store with roots still then place the roots in a glass of water and cover the leaves with a loosely fitting plastic bag.. If you want to remove the roots then when you get your bunch home, immediately remove the roots and, wrap the coriander leaves in a damp cloth or paper towel and place them in a plastic bag..

2.Whenever possible, buy whole coriander seeds instead of coriander powder since the latter loses its flavor more quickly, and coriander seeds can be easily ground with a mortar and pestle. Coriander seeds and coriander powder should be kept in an opaque, tightly sealed glass container in a cool, dark and dry place. Ground coriander will keep for about four to six months, while the whole seeds will stay fresh for about one year.

3.Coriander seeds and coriander powder should be kept in an opaque, tightly sealed glass container in a cool, dark and dry place. Ground coriander will keep for about four to six months, while the whole seeds will stay fresh for about one year.

Health Benefits of Coriander:

Coriander is quite nutritious, and rich in Vitamin C. Research carried out in the United States suggests that coriander may be beneficial for lowering blood-cholesterol. In lab experiments carried out with diabetic mice, coriander also showed the effect of lowering blood sugar level. Coriander even contains antibiotic substances that can prevent some forms of food poisoning.

Source :
http://www.uni-graz.at/~katzer/engl/Cori_sat.html
http://www.whfoods.com/index.html
http://www.theepicentre.com/Spices/coriander.html
http://everything2.com/index.pl?node=coriander

Coriander – Tomato chutney :
The chutney is very common dish in our family whether it a coriander-tomato or anything else. See the list of chutneys we prepare in our family here.

                         Coriander Tomato Chutney

                                                     Coriander – Tomato Chutney

Ingredients :
Coriander – 1/2 cup chopped
Tomato – 4 to 5 medium sized
Red chillies – 2
Garlic pods – 2-3 medium
Jeera – 1-2 tspn
Tamarind water – 3 tbsp
Oil – 2-3 tspn
Salt to taste

Method :
1.Heat oil in a pan and add red chillies, coriander, tomato and close with the lid.
2.Let them cook on slow flame.
3.Remove from the fire once they become soft (Takes roughly 7 min).Remember,….don’t overcook them.
4.In a mixie, add garlic pods, above mixture , jeera, tamarind water, salt. Grind them.
5.Serve with hot rice, indian clarified butter. Also goes well with Masala vada, pakodi,…

Note : This chutney can be served with / without tempering. Both versions tastes good. I do either way.In the picture above  u don’t find tempering.

For tempering :
1.Heat 1 tspn of oil in a pan , add red chillies(Check the spice level of the chutney once , since we have already added red chillies during frying.), 1 tspn of urad dal + Chana dal, jeera-1/2-1 tspn, mustard seeds-1/2 tspn.
2.When mustard seeds splutter add curry leaves – 10 no.
3.Add this mixture to the chutney.

                         Coriander Tomato chutney With rice

                                                   Coriander-Tomato chutney Rice

 Notes :
1.The quantity of the coriander should be less compared to the quantity of the tomato.

 

Potato Noodles in Veg Gravy Wednesday, February, 28, 2007

Filed under: Gravy Items — coolpepper @ 7:38 pm

                                                            From my childhood I have a habit of collecting the interesting articles from the news papers. Now when I look back to those articles, they seem to be nothing in this fastly growing internet age ( as everything is available in the net), but definetly interesting and important at that point of time. And one of the important things which I used to collect without fail was Cooking articles from Eenadu sunday magazine. I have been collecting cooking articles from almost 12 years. Even other magazines also used to feature the cooking articles, but I used to like eenadu`s. The thing which attracted me was, the presentation. I tried them only after my marriage, infact I started cooking after marriage. My mom always used to crack jokes on me about my recipe collection, since I never ever did anything in my mom` kitchen. Even now, whenever I go to my mom`s house, I don`t help her in kitchen. Neither I help her nor she asks me some help. Parents are so kind right, they don`t want their kids to work and get tired even for couple of minutes. Ahh,,,,where am I going… now coming to this potato noodles in veg gravy recipe, the idea of doing potato noodles is based on one of the Eenadu`s recipes. I don`t remember recipe properly since I did not get my heavy recipe file here :( becoz of the weight reasons. The airlines to Tokyo do not allow more than 33 kg per person. I know I know, I am deviating from the main point. Now seriously to the recipe…… So here comes my recipe for JFI-Potato.

                         Potato Noodles

                                                            Potato Noodles in Veg Gravy

Potato Noodles :
Source
: Eenadu sunday magazine.

Ingredients:
Boiled potatoes – 3 medium sized
All purpose flour – 2-3 cups
Coriander leaves 3 tbspn
Garam masala – 2tbspn
salt acc to taste
Oil – for deep frying

                          Muruku Maker

                                                                  Muruku Maker

Method:
1.Mash the boiled potatoe properly without any lumps.
2.Add all-purpose flour( add acc to consistency), salt, garam masala, coriander leaves. Mix well.
3.The dough should have smooth consistency and should be able make free move through the muruku maker.
4.Heat the oil under medium heat, untill hot. Now, take a small portion of dough, put in the muruku maker and press the muruku maker over hot oil, making concentric cirlces. Fry both sides till u get golden color.
5.Keep the fried potato noodles aside for veg gravy.
These potato noodles can be taken as snacks with evening tea, can be used with following veg gravy, with soups.

                         Potato Noodles 1

                                                                      Potato Noodles

Notes :
1.I used 2 tbsp of garam masala in the potato noodles. But do remember that even gravy will also have spices. So, be careful using garam masala here.
2.I did not mash the potatoes properly, which was my mistake. Mash properly in order to have smooth flow of dough through the holes of Muruku maker.
3.I used corinder leaves in dough. Curry leaves can also be used.
4.Don t fry them for longer time, as they ll turn brown easily.
5.Potato noodles can be stored upto 2 days in airtight container.

Veg Gravy:
source:
Mom

Ingredients:
Boiled potatoes – 2 medium sized
Cauliflower – 1 cup
soya chunks – 1/2 cup
Green Peas – 1/2 cup
Tomato – 1/2 cup
Carrot – 1/4 cup
Onion – 1 medium sized
Finely chopped ginger – 1/2 tspn
Crushed garlic – 2 pods
Red chillie powder – acc to ur spice level
Garam masala – acc to ur spice level
Coriander leaves – Optional
Curry Leavs – 5-6
Cloves – 3
Cinnamon – a small stick
Jeera – 1-2 tspn
Turmeric – a pinch
Salt – acc to taste
Oil – 2 tbspn

Method:
1.First boil the vegetables.
2.Heat oil in a pan, add clove, cinnamon, jeera, and turmeric. When jeers starts popping, add curry leaves, ginger n garlic. Fry for about 3 min and add chopped onions.
3.Add garam masala, salt and mix properly.
4.When you find onions turn golden brown, add tomatoes and let it cook for sometime by keeping the lid. This is the main step as this is the base gravy.
Adding redchillie powder and water should be done at this step.
5.Now add all cooked vegetables and mix them gently.
6.Remove from the fire after 5-7 min.
7.Garnish with coriander leaves.

Serving : Take the veg gravy in a serving bowl an put the potato noodles on top. Do this just before serving. Have with rice, chapathi, naan, poori,..
 

                          Potato Noodles2

                                                        Potato Noodles in Veg gravy

Notes:
1..Beans and capsicum can also be used, which I usually use.
2.I used tinned tomato chopped.
3.I prefer coriander leaves to coriander powder.
4.I pressure cooked potato, cauliflower, carrot and boiled the green peas, soyachunks in hot water for abt 10 min.
5.To make the gravy little rich, either add the brown onion paste in step 3 or add cashewnut paste.

 

Onigiri Indian Style Tuesday, February, 27, 2007

Filed under: Rice — coolpepper @ 12:24 am

                                                            This is my entry for Leftover tuesdays # 2. Being a South Indian, our staple food is rice, whether its for lunch or for dinner. So, the frequent left over item is cooked rice. So, daily  my thali will have atleast 1/4 cup of left over rice :(. 1/4 cup is manageable, but  sometimes, particularly during some family dinners, the quantity of leftover rice gets increased. So, here comes the  problem. Throwing away some food item is considered to be wrong in our households ( In most of the Indian families). So, we have to finish them off at any cost(obviously before they get spoiled). So, every family  has their own idea for left over rice. In our family, we either consume with curries, or with Tadkas..etc. After coming to Tokyo, I used to see the Japanese having Onigiri(Japanese rice ball) comfortably at any place. I liked their idea. So, I used my Indian brain and here is the result. Hmmmmm….we liked its taste,..an exceptionally tasty food.

                          Onigiri Indian Style before frying

                                                                       Before Frying

Ingredients:
Cooked rice – 150-200 gm
Finely grated potato – 3 tbspn
Finely grated carrot – 2 tbspn
Frozen Peas – 1-2 tbspn
Finely chopped shitake mushroom – 2 no.
Coriander leaves – acc to taste
Salt – acc to taste
Garam Masala - acc to taste
Unsalted cheese grated finely – 1 tbspn
Oil – 1 tbspn

Method:
1.Blanch the grated potato and carrot.
2.Fry chopped shitake mushroomss, and peas.
3.Take cooked rice in a plate (or wide opened vessel) , add blanched potato, carrot, fried shitake mushrooms, peas, coriander leaves,  salt, garam masala, grated cheese. Mix well.
4.Take the mixture and make the desired shape and fry briefly (both the sides) in 1 tbspn of oil for abt 5 min.
Serve with any chutney or have them as it is. We had with coriander chutney.
                        Onigiri Indian Style with chutney

                                            Onigiri Indian Style with coriander-tomato chutney

Notes:
1.I blanched the grated potato and carrot to make sure that they cook properly and also takes less time in frying.
2.I fried shitake mushrooms and peas with 1/2 tspn of oil and little salt.
3.I used jasmine rice. Jasmine rice is a sticky rice.
4.Can be made into any shape, like heart shape, triangular shape, oval shape.
5.It took abt 7 min for me in frying them, I breifly fried them as I have already added cooked ingredients to the mixture.

 

Strawberry Protector Monday, February, 19, 2007

Filed under: Cooldrinks — coolpepper @ 10:26 pm

                                                             Strawberry protector is my entry for this month`s AFAM-Strawberry. The word protector sounds interesting right? Hmmm,..Yes even I got interested with this word when we went to Freshness burger about 4 months back. Freshness burger is fast food restaurant in Japan. We like its Fish burger. So, whenever we go to freshness burger our standard menu goes like this – Fish burger ( Going to freshness n not having fish burger is a big NO NO for us), fried potato/Onion ring, chai (its not a typical Indian chai, it has different flavour and taste, my husband likes it). Since, I am not a big fan of chai, I usually go for some cool drinks or simply water. So, on that day while my husband was giving order, suddenly I happened to see Kiwi protector. I liked that word and guess what ….. I tried it.Hmm I liked it. Let me tell you…Kiwi protector is nothing but kiwi fruit juice. Ahhh……Simple thing with fancy name is a good way of attracting people,..right?  Whatever, I liked their concept of providing/ preparing some fresh fruit juice right in front of the customer.

                          Strawberry Protector

                                                                       Strawberry Protector

My version of protector:
                                                             When I saw strawberry as this month`s AFAM, I got some ideas like strawberry lassi, strawberry juice, etc. There is no point in making strawberry lassi as we are not great fans of lassis (we drink butter milk daily though). Strawberry juice is a good option but y not with twist like adding some other fruits. so here come my idea of preparing.

Ingredients:
Strawberries – 4 medium sized
Kiwi Fruit – 1/2 fruit
Orange juice – 1/2 glass (optional
Honey as per taste

Method:
1.In a blender, add strawberries, kiwi, orange juice, honey and blend it well
2.Garnish with strawberry n serve chilled.

Notes:
1.I used orange juice in place of water. Next time I am planning to use some other juice or just water as adding orange juice has  changed the natural color of strawberry to orange color.
2.I always prefer honey to sugar in fruit juices.

The little things which I know about strawberries:
1.Strawberries have higher levels of vitamin c, fiber than most other fruits like apples, bananas.
2.Strawberries are found to reduce risk of cancer.

 

Carrot Sweet Sunday, February, 18, 2007

Filed under: Sweets — coolpepper @ 1:17 am

                                          Hello Friends!! Its been a very long time since I blogged. Sorry,  if I made anybody to wait for my posts. I was little busy and could not give time for the blog. From now, I ll try my best to be more regular with posting. This time I came with carrot sweet, which I made on Valentines day. This is the experiment I made with traditional carrot halwa/kheer which uses milk.  We liked it, hope you too love it.

                         Carrot Sweet

                                                                   Carrot Sweet
Ingredients:
Ghee – 1-2 Tbspn
Brown sugar – 1 cup
Cardamom – 2 no.
Carrot grated – 2 cups
Water – 1/2 cup
Saffron (optional)
Cashewnuts – 1 Tbspn
Raisins – 1 Tbsbn

Method:
1.Heat ghee in a pan. Add brown sugar, cardamom. Keep stirring it until sugar melts ( Be careful while doing this. Avoid adding water at this satge as there are chances of catching fire).
2.Once sugar gets melted , add grated carrot.
3.Stir well for about 5 min, add water.
4.Let it cook for 10 min.
6.Garnish the sweet with fried (in ghee) cashew nuts, raisins
7.Serve this hot or cold. Both tastes good.

                        

                         Carrot Sweet 1

Notes:
1.BROWN SUGAR: Brown sugar is a sucrose sugar product with a distinctive brown color due to the presence of molasses. It is either an unrefined or partially refined soft sugar consisting of sugar crystals with some residual molasses content or produced by the addition of molasses to refined white sugar. Brown sugar has a slightly lower caloric value
by weight than white sugar due to the presence of water. One hundred grams of brown sugar contains 373 calories, as opposed to 396 calories in white sugar. However, brown sugar packs more densely than white sugar due to the smaller crystal size and may have more calories when measured by volume. Read more here.
2.In step one, be careful and avoid adding water at that stage, as there are chances of catching fire.
3.I added little saffron in 1/2 cup of water n used that water in step 3.
4.In step 2, I first removed the pan from fire n added the carrot.
5.It took about 15 min for me to cook.

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR Sunday, December, 31, 2006

Filed under: Festive Mood — coolpepper @ 9:16 pm

                  HAPPY NEW YEAR

Just as the flowers gives off fragrances…….
Wishes emanate from my heart…
Hoping that the year ahead is a great one
Right from the very start!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Noothana Samvatsara Subhakanshalu!!

 

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.