Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Festival recipes

Arudra Darisanam[Thiruvadirai] and Thiruvadirai Kali.

Falling on the day of Thiruvadirai star in Marghazhi [November-December] this is a festival of great importance. The sweet dish offering on this day, Thiruvadirai kali, is something with which everyone is familiar. Thiruvadirai Kali and 7 vegetable Kozhambu or sambar/Kootu along with butter, are the naivedyam items prepared for Thiruvadirai.

My Puja Room-Naivedyam of Kali onThiruvadirai 22-12-2010

Here is the recipe for Thiruvadirai Kali:


*Raw Rice 2 cups
*Green gram dal 1/2 cup[optional]
*Jaggery 21/2 to 3 cups[depending on individual taste]
*Water proportion: 1: 2 1/2 
*Grated coconut 1/2 cup]
*Cardamom powder 1tsp.
*Ghee 1 tbsp.
*Cashew nuts: 10 to 15 Nos.
*Raisins: 10 to 15 Nos.


1.  Wash the rice well and dry. Roast the dried rice to a light pink color and powder. Roast the green gram dal to a light brown color.  

2.  Melt the jaggery in 3 cups of water and strain to remove dirt and sand particles. In a large thick bottomed kadai pour the melted and strained jaggery and boil. 

3.  Add the  grated coconut and cardomom powder. When the mixture starts boiling, reduce the heat and add the roasted rice flour, little at a time, stirring well all the time. 

4.  When all the rice flour has been added, keep stirring well until all the water has been absorbed and rice flour is well cooked. Add the ghee and mix well and remove.

I learnt this recipe from my mother and this is the traditional kali as was being prepared by my mother right from my childhood days. It can be optionaly decorated with cashewnuts and raisins fried in ghee, to make it richer in taste. 

Thiruvadirai kali can also be prepared in a pressure cooker with more ease.  

1.  Open and pour the strained jaggery, coconut gratings and cardomom powder. When the mixture starts boiling,  add the roasted rice flour gradually, stirring well. 

2. When all the rice flour has been added, close the cooker and reduce the heat to the minimum. When steam starts coming out , place the weight and cook for 15-20 mnts and switch off. 

3.  Open the lid of the cooker and put the cooked Kali in the Kadai  and pour the ghee and mix well until it is smooth without any lumps.  The delicious Kali is ready to be served. 

4.  Stir in fried Cashew nuts/raisans and cardamom. Serve with Butter and Sambar.

This dish tastes good especially when served hot. 

2.  Vegetable Kozhambu/ kootu:


Carrot - 1
French Beans or Green beans - 50g
Broad beans - 50g
Cluster beans - 25g
Brinjal - 3 to 4
Potato - 2
Yam - 25g
Pumpkin - 50g
Sweet potato - 3 to 4
Chow chow [small ] - 1
Plantain - 1
Hyacinth bean or field bean [ Mochai in Tamil ] - 25g
Ash gourd - 50g
Coriander seeds - 1 cup
Red chillies - 5 to 6
Grated cocunut - 1 cup
Channa dhal - handful
Toor dhal - 1/4 cup
Tamarind - 1/2 the size of lemon
Tumeric powder - 2 tsp
Mustard seeds - 2 tsp
Fenugreek seeds - 1/2 tsp
Oil - 3 tsp
Salt - As per need


1. Pressure cook toor dhal by adding water and little tumeric powder and keep it aside.
2. Peel the skin of ash gourd, pumpkin, sweet potato, chow chow, yam, plantain, carrot and cut it.
3. After cutting brinjal and plantain , put it to water so that they will not become black.
4. Pressure cook potato and yam together and peel the skin of potato.
5. Cut broad beans, cluster beans , green beans, field bean , carrot to medium size and cook it.
6. Cook sweet potato seperately as it will cook fast.
7. Heat oil in a pan and fry coriander seeds, channa dhal, red chillies and grated cocunut and allow it to cool for some time.
8. Grind the above to a fine paste.
9. Heat 1 tsp oil in a pan and put mustard seeds.
10. When mustard seeds sputters out, add fenugreek seeds and remove it from flame after a minute.
11. Take a broad vessel and put chopped ash gourd, pumpkin, chow chow, plantain, brinjal.
12. Add tumeric powder and water to the above and boil it.
13. Extract tamarind juice for 1 cup and 1 cup of water to it.
13. When these vegetables are cooked, add the tamarind juice and the remaining cooked vegetables, salt [broad bean, cluster bean,
field bean, green beans, potato, sweet potato, carrot, yam ].
14. Smash the cooked dhal and add to the vessel and mix it well.
15. After few minutes, put the grinded paste and mix it well.
16. When yellow colour comes on the corner of the vessel, switch off the stove.
17. Add the mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds to kootu/Kozhambu and mix it well.

Note :

If you find kootu is not very thick, take 2 tsps of rice flour , make a paste by adding water and put it into the kootu while it is boiling.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Indian Starters/Appetizers - Paneer Tikka Recipe

Paneer Tikka is very delicious, especially for parties, as Starters/Appetizers, loved by one and all.  

Paneer cut into cubes
Nutritional Analysis:
Good Points:
*Low in Cholesterol
*High in Vitamin A

Negative Points:
*High in saturated fat


*1 Large block of Paneer
*1 Onion
*1 Tomato
*Finely chopped Coriander leaves

To Marinade:

*1/2 Cup Curd[plain Yogurt]
*1 tsp Garlic paste
*1 tsp Ginger paste
*1 tsp Tandoori Powder
*1 tsp Jeera Powder
*1 tsp Chaat Powder
*Salt to taste
*Red Chilli Powder to taste


1.  Cut Paneer into long 1/2 inch thick cubes.
2.  Cut all vegetables into cubes.
3.  Mix all ingredients for marinade and keep aside.
4.  Brush the marinade to the Paneer and refrigerate for 3 hours.
5.  Heat oil in a kadhai and fry marinated Paneer till fully done.
6.  Also fry other vegetables.
7.  Arrange the fried vegetables and the Paneer in a plate.
8.  Garnish with coriander and lemon slices.
9.  Serve Paneer Tikka hot with any chutney of your choice.

   [Calories per Serving: 266gms = 320 apprx.
     Type of Recipe: Veg.
     Serves: 4 persons]

Indian Starters/Appetizers - Raw Banana Chips Recipe

Banana Chips is a crispy, tasty recipe liked by one and all.  

Raw Bananas for Chips
Nutritional Analysis:

Good points
*No Cholesterol
*very low in sodium

Negative Points:
*Very high in saturated fat
*High in sugar


• ½ tsp Oil
• 2 tsp Ginger Garlic Paste
• 4 medium sized Raw Bananas
• 2 tsp Red Chili Powder
• Salt to taste
• A pinch of Turmeric Powder 


Slice the raw bananas into round shape after washing them properly.
Add red chili powder, turmeric powder and salt to the ginger garlic paste.
Smear a little paste on each slice of raw banana, making sure that the layer of paste is thin and on both sides of banana. 
Heat a frying pan and place these slices in the pan.
Shallow fry raw banana slices, turning them over frequently.
Remove them from the pan and drain the excess oil if any, on a tissue paper.

[ Calorie Count per Serving: 28gms = 147 approx.
  Recipe Type: Veg.
  Serves: 4 persons]

Indian Starters/Appetizers - Hot Cheese Dip Recipe

Hot Cheese Dip is a simple recipe that consists of melted, softened cheese to which other ingredients are added.  Very tasty for an appetizer. A favourite with the kids while partying. To be taken with crispy bread or crunchy Chips.

Nutritional Analysis:
Good Points
*High in Calcium
Negative Points:
*Very high in Saturated Fat
*High in Sodium
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped green onion.
  • 1 clove garlic, minced.
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon, crushed.
  • 1 tablespoon margarine or butter.
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch.
  • 3/4 cup  milk.
  • 2 cups shredded cheese.
  • 1 3-ounce package cream cheese, cut up.
  • French bread cubes or tortilla chips.

1.  In a saucepan cook onion, garlic, and tarragon in margarine or butter.

2.  Stir in the cornstarch.

3.  Add  milk all at once.

4.  Cook and stir till thickened and bubbly.

5.  Gradually add cheeses, stirring until melted.

6.  Serve with bread or chips.

[Calories per Serving: 15gms = 40 approx.
 Type of Recipe: Veg.
 Serves: Makes 2 Cups-16 Servings] 

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Indian Starters/Appetizers -Aloo Tuk Recipe

Aloo Tuk is a crispy, tasty appetizer, very apt as a starter in any party. These are spicy potatoes that are lightly pressed and deep fried. 

We are always in need of quick recipes for snacks that can be served in a jiffy when unexpected guests arrive or during parties.   One such recipe is Aloo Tuk.  It is so simple and yet so tasty that you can be sure that your guests would be demanding more and more and asking for the recipe from you!

Nutritional Analysis:
Good Points:
*No. Cholesterol

*Very Low in Sodium 
* High in Potassium
*High in Vitamin B6
*Very High in Vitamin C
• 8 Potatoes[Boiled] 
• 3 tsp Red chilli powder
• 2 tsp Mango powder
• 2 tsp Coriander powder
• Oil for frying 

• Salt to taste 


1.  Cut the boiled potatoes into round shapes[not very thin]. Heat the oil and fry the potatoes until they are creamy in colour. See that you do not over fry them.  Place the fried potatoes on a kitchen tissue to absorb the excess oil from them.  Flatten them with your hands when they are cool.  Keep aside.

2.  Once again heat the oil and fry the potatoes until they are totally crisp on the outside and turn into a lovely golden brown in colour.  Place the fried potatoes again on a kitchen tissue to drain the excess oil from them.  

3.  Now you may flavour them with salt, mango powder, coriander powder, chilly powder.  Shake them well till the masala is evenly distributed.  

4.  Place on a serving dish and garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves.  

5.  The Aloo Tuks are now ready.  They taste great when they are served hot and crispy. A favourite for the entire family indeed!

 [Calories per Serving:
  100gms Bolied/Fried Potatoes=83 approx.
 Type of Recipe: Veg.
 Serves: 4 persons]

Indian Starters/Appetizers - Baby Corn Finger Chips

Appetizers are a must for any occasion. This section on appetizers recipes contains various easy appetiser recipes that would add a dash to your party and arouse your hunger for food. 


Baby Corn
Baby Corn Finger Chips are a refreshing and healthy change from potato chips.  This is a very easy-to-make recipe loved by one and all inthe family. 

Nutritional Analysis:

Good Points: 
*Very high in dietery Fiber
*High in Iron 
*High in Vitamin A

Negative Points:
*Very High in Sodium 

• 10 Baby Corns
• 1 tsp Ginger-Garlic Paste
• 1 tsp Green Chilli Paste
• ½ tsp Pepper
• 1/2 tsp Mustard Powder
• 1 Egg
• ½ cup Bread Crumbs
• 1 tsp Soy Sauce 


Mix together ginger-garlic paste, green chili paste, pepper and mustard powder and soy sauce.
Marinate baby corns in the above mixture for 30 minutes.
Deep fry in hot oil.
Serve hot.

[Calories per Serving: 100gms Baby Corn=25
 Recipe Type: Veg.
 Serves:  4 Persons]
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