November 17, 2015

Karpooravalli Kuzhambu

There can be no greater joy of outsourcing the ingredients from your own garden for using in your kitchen.  We started our own karpooravalli or omavalli(tamil names for ajwain) plant from a cutting given to us by my cousin sometime last year just to add to our collection of health benefical plants like tulasi, curry leaves and manathakkali.  Ajwain is more popular in northern India and the seeds are used as seasonings in dal or in the parathas and more so in the snacks.  Who can forget the aromatic taste of these lovely seeds in the very popular "omapodi" in the tamil households. However the leaves in abundance on my plant tempted me to try this dish which I would be making it again and again for sure.  Infact I do not hestitate to add these chopped leaves anytime I make rotis and puris.....

/4 tsp methi seeds
1/4 tsp urad dal
2 tsp dhaniya
1 tsp each tuar and chana dal
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
2  long red chillies
15 to 20 black pepper
20 medium sized omavalli leaves

Roast all this in this order starting with methi seeds, dhaniya, pepper, the dals, cumin seeds and red chillies and add the chopped leaves in the end and saute it briefly

Grind with 3 tsp tamarind paste and about a tsp of salt and about 2 to 3 cups of water to make it into a fine paste.

Take about 3 tbsp oil season mustard hing, few curry leaves and add the ground paste.  Let this cook till the oil begins to separate.

Enjoy it by adding to hot rice!!!

October 27, 2015

Protein Rich Idlis

Coming back after a long time decided to start on a healthier note with some nutritious twist to the ever preferred idlis...

1 cup jowar
1/2 cup quinoa
1/2 cup whole green moong
1/2 cup idli rice
1/2 cup urad dal
1/4 cup poha
1 tsp fenugreek/methi seeds

Start off by soaking the quinoa, whole moong and the jowar.  Basically I soaked these three ingredients double the time that I did for urad dal, rice, poha and methi seeds.  Wash everything thoroughly before starting to grind.  Grind the urad and methi in the idli grinder first till it is smooth and fluffy.  In the meanwhile, grind the quinoa, moong and the jowar individually in the blender jar with very minimal water.  You do not want to add too much water which might end up in a runny batter.  Add the rice to this and let it grind to a coarse consistency.  Now add all the other ingredients and also the ground poha to the above batter and let the grinder run till it is mixed thoroughly.  

Transfer the batter, add the needed salt and let it ferment overnight or till it rises in quantity.  
The batter is now ready to make some nutritious idlis.