May 29, 2016

Thengai Podi /Spiced Coconut Powder

How to make Thengai Podi /Spiced Coconut Powder (Side for Tiffin/Rice)

            This is one of amma's eagerly awaited dishes because, it was only made when we had to pack food  to take along with us on long distance  train journeys. There was something special about those trips. We (me & my siblings) had nothing important to do for more than 24 hours, our only duties were eating, napping, chatting (in person - not online!!) with fellow  travellers & more eating from the food vendors through out the journey. We had minimal physical activity, yet the thought of the special meals packed by amma, would make our mouth water & sure enough we would be hungry on time. Mom pretty much made the same items for every trip, but whatever she made was always a hit with everyone. Her menu would include Idli, spicy tomato chutney, Tamarind rice, potato chips Curd rice, pickle,  Poori, this thengai podi/spiced coconut powder mixed with gingelly oil. Breakfast, lunch & dinner; all pre-packed meal wise for every member of the family, individually wrapped in plantain leaves & newspaper, secured with a twine with their names written on it.

          Oh the thought of it, brings back so many wonderful childhood memories. The simple joys of a minimalist life. No video games, no mobile phones, no ipods & headphones. We were each  allowed to buy a comic, before boarding the train; which we would exchange once we were done reading it. Or we would just sit by the open window & enjoy the (hot or cool) wind blowing on our face; only to find out after a few hours that our face & hair is covered with soot!! Remember the good old steam engines? Those carefree days of fun & frolic, a time when we enjoy everything under the sun. 

           Getting back to the recipe, please take caution, (as mentioned below) while grinding the coconut; so you don't end up with an oily paste. Enjoy your Thengai Podi/Coconut chutney powder with a drizzle of sesame/gingelly oil & some steamed idli, dosa varieties or steamed rice. Sharing one of my favorite recipes from mom with my fellow bloggers at CCC# 32: May -- Week 4.


1 cup, Coprai/dehydrated coconut flakes
1.5 cups of fresh grated coconut
5 to 7 no:s, dry red chillies
Salt to taste
2 sprigs of curry leaves
a small marble sized ball of tamarind
1/8 tsp of asafoetida
1 tbsp, channa dal/bengal gram dal
1 tbsp, urad dal
1 tbsp, oil

May 22, 2016

Poosani kai/Ash gourd/Winter Melon Juice

How to make Poosani kai/Ash gourd/Winter Melon Juice

        If you are an avid cook, and you grew up watching your grandma/mom cook, you probably are going the Paleo way, unintentionally. Read the label on a packaged food that is purchased, chances are you will notice an extensive list of gmo, artificial ingredients & excessive amounts of sugar/salt hidden in every box. I have always been a fan of the Paleo template even before I knew the term - 'Paleo'. Call me old fashioned, but I strongly believe eating real, live, whole unprocessed foods is a way for optimal health. 

        I wanted to create a diabetic friendly recipe,as a way to use the leftover juice, while i needed the pulp for a recipe. Also because, I had heard that the winter melon was one the best live, positive prana foods. Here is an energizing coolant for the summer that you can enjoy with salt or honey as per your preference.

Ingredients for 1 serving:

3 to 4 cups of grated Ash gourd - squeezed & strained abt 8oz
1/2 tsp, fresh lemon extract
1/4 tsp, salt
1/8 tsp, pepper powder
mint leaves, for garnish
ice cubes (optional)

May 15, 2016

Tangy Beetroot Salad / Beetroot Elumichai Salad

How to make tangy beetroot salad

            Nothing beats the beets to help detox your system. Raw beets tend to give off an earthy aroma. That's why the beets in this salad are semi/flash cooked to make it more appetizing. Add to that, some raw mango, lemon juice, coconut & peanuts; and you got yourself a wonderfully delicious & nutritious side. I found this quick & easy salad recipe in my Isha recipe book. Sending this scrumptious recipe over to CCC# 32: May--Week 2. Give this beetroot salad a try today!

Ingredients for 2 servings:

1 medium sized Beetroot -peeled & grated
1 tsp, Lemon juice
1 tbsp, fresh grated Coconut
2 tbsp, green Mango - grated
1 tbsp, Peanuts (soaked overnight or dry roasted)
½ tsp, Pepper powder
Salt to taste

For the seasoning:

1 tsp, oil
½ tsp, Mustard
½ tsp, Split, husked black gram/Urad dal
¼ tsp, Chickpea/Bengal gram dal
A few shredded curry leaves

May 1, 2016

Almond Jam Macaroons

How to make Almond Jam Macaroons (Gluten & Dairy free)

         I have always loved a recipe which does not use ingredients, that are empty carb. Here is one such recipe, which uses blanched almonds as the main ingredient, that has all kinds of  health aspects in it. If you would like to further cut down on calories, you can skip the jam topping; as the macaroons are sweet enough on their own. I have been making these healthy cookies/macaroons for a couple of years, since the time it was aired on a TV show. Sharing this delightfully chewy & healthy recipe with my friends at CCC# 31: April -- Week 4.

Ingredients for about 20 macaroons:

1.5 cups blanched almonds (How to blanch almonds)
1/3 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 large egg white
1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup of your favorite jam
(I used raspberry jam & fig preserves)

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