September 24, 2009

Arachuvitta Sambhar

Posted in Dinner, Gravy, Indian Lunch at 3:20 pm by kalpana


This sambhar tastes just like hotel sambhar.


  1. Chopped veggies (carrots, eggplant,beans)- 4 cups
  2. onion medium -1
  3. Toor Dal – 3/4 cup
  4. Tomatoes – 2
  5. Tamarind pulp – 1/2 cup
  6. Turmeric – 1/4 teaspoon
  7. Mustard seeds – 1
  8. Curry leaves – 1 sprig
  9. Ghee – 3 tablespoons

To Toast and grind

  1. Freshly grated coconut – 3 tablespoons
  2. Coriander powder – 1 tablespoon
  3. Chana dal – 2 teaspoons
  4. Cumin seeds – 1/4 teaspoon
  5. Dry Red chillies – 3 (can be adjusted to suit your taste)


  • Soak the toor dal in water for 4-5 hours.
  • Pressure cook the veggies,finely chopped tomatoes,toor dal,turmeric powder,tamarind pulp,salt with little water.
  • You can also cook the dal and veggies seperately, if you want to.This way, you need not worry about overcooking the veggies.In this case ,no need to soak the dal in water.
  • Heat a pan.slowly toast the coconut till it turns to a nice caramel brown color and keep it aside.This is a very important step for a delicious sambhar.
  • In the same pan ,toast chana dal,cumin seeds,red chillies till you get a nice aroma.
  • On a low heat,toast the coriander powder as it may burn easily.If you using whole coriander seeds,you can toast it along with the other ingredients.
  • Add a little water to the toasted ingredients and grind it to a fine paste.
  • Now ,add the paste to the cooked toordal-veggie mixture and bring it to a boil.Add water if it is too thick.
  • For tempering,heat ghee in a pan,add the mustard seeds,curry leaves,finely chopped onion and saute them for few mins.
  • Add it to the sambhar,mix well and garnish with cilantro.

July 9, 2009

Vatha Kuzhambu

Posted in Dinner, Gravy, Indian Lunch at 12:19 pm by kalpana



  • Gingelly oil – 3 tablespoons
  • Mustard seeds – 1/2  teaspoon
  • Fenugreek seeds – 1/4 teaspoon
  • Urad dal – 3/4 teaspoon
  • Toor Dal – 1 teaspoon
  • Red chillies – 3
  • Curry leaves – few
  • Sundakkai vathal ( dried turkey berry) – 1 tablespoon
  • Urad dal appalam (pappadam) -1 or 2
  • Chilli powder – 2 teaspoons ( I use good old sambhar powder)
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 teaspoon
  • Tamarind pulp -Less than 1/4 cup ( Adjust  to suit your taste)
  • Salt
  • Rice flour – 1 teaspoon
  • Coconut – 1/4 cup (optional)


  1. Heat oil in a pan.Add mustard seeds ,fenugreek seeds,toor dal,urad dal ,red chillies,curry  leaves,Asafoetida and fry for few seconds.
  2. Now tear the appalam and add it to the oil.fry for few seconds.
  3. Add the dried turkey berry and fry for a minute.It is usually fried separately and added to the kuzambu at the end.But the former works just fine for me.
  4. Dilute the tamarind pulp in 2 cups of water.
  5. Add the tamarind pulp, chilli powder,turmeric powder,salt and bring it to boil.
  6. Let it boil for 5mins.
  7. Dilute a teaspoon of rice flour in little water and add it to the kuzambu.This is just to thicken the gravy.
  8. If you want to add coconut, grind it in a mixer and add it to the gravy. ( In this case, you can skip step 7)
  9. Serve with piping hot rice and appalam.I am not even  going to bother describing the taste.It’s beyond words 🙂

March 2, 2009

Indian Thali

Posted in Dinner, Indian Lunch at 1:05 pm by messycooks


Inspired by asha’s awesome thalis, I decided to create my own thali.I went through her thalis and got some ideas on how to make a balanced meal.To start with,my thali is a combination of sweet ,spicy,hot,mild dishes.I  have made small thali with in the little time i could spare. I was so excited to make this meal that i even fell down spraining my ankle while multitasking 😀 …i didn’t care….thali came out fabulous!  🙂

Now  for the dishes (in clockwise direction):

Milagu smabhar,inji-onion rasam, paneer stuffed paratha,Avarakkai poriyal,sukiyan and rice.

sukiyan : It’s  a  deep fried sweet dish.


  • Chana dhal – 1 cup
  • Grated Jaggery – 1/2 cup
  • Powdered Cardamom – 1/4 teaspoonimg_31342
  • Maida – 1/2 cup
  • Salt – a pinch
  • Oil for frying

Method for sukiyan

  1. Soak the chana dhal in water for 4 hours.Pressure cook the chanadhal.It should be well cooked.
  2. Using  a masher or back of ladle ,mash the dhal.
  3. Add jaggery with little water in a pan and bring it to a boil.
  4. When it bubbles, add the dhal,cardamom and pinch of salt.
  5. keep stirring until all the water evaporates and dhal  hardens.
  6. Allow it to cool.
  7. Form small balls and keep it aside.
  8. Add little water, salt to maida and form a thick paste.Consistency should be like idli batter.
  9. Dip the balls in maida and deep fry them in oil.

lentils I am sending over  sukiyan recipe to Lentils mela hosted by ashwini.

Panner Stuffed paratha

For the stuffing : Heat oil in a pan.Add 1/2 tsp cumin,1/2 grated ginger, 2 cloves grated garlic,1 teaspoon grated onion,1 tsp tomato paste, 1 cup grated paneer,3/4 teaspoon Chilli powder,1/2 teaspoon kasuri methi , one by one and saute them for 5-6 mins.

For paratha Dough

Ingredients :

Whole wheat flour – 1 1/2 cups

Water – 1/2 cup

oil – 2 tablespoons



  1. Mix all the ingredients and knead the dough for few mins.
  2. Make equal sized small balls out of the dough.
  3. Roll out  the ball  using rolling about tablespoon of stuffing in the center .fold the edges of the dough over the filling  and press it well  to form a ball.Make sure the stuffing is well sealed inside the ball.
  4. Roll it again to desired thickness and shape.
  5. Add little oil or butter to tava and cook it for 3-4 mins on each side or until it’s done.

Inji -onion rasam.

  1. Crush the 3 garlic cloves ,1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds,10 pepper corns using mortar and pestle.
  2. Pound 1 inch ginger,5-6 pearl onion with back of a skillet to release the flavor.
  3. Add the above ingredients,1 1/2 finely chopped tomatoes,few curry leaves, 1/2 teaspoon rasam powder,tamarind paste,little turmeric ,cilantro and water.cook it till you see bubbles around the edges of the vessel.
  4. Heat little oil in a pan,add 1/2 tsp mustard seeds,little fenugreek seeds,a pinch of asafoetida, 2 red chilles.cook it for few seconds and add it to rasam.Add some more fresh cilantro at the end.

Avarakkai Poriyal

Method:Heat oil in a pan.Add 1/2 tsp mustard seeds,1 tsp urad dhal,few curry leaves,3 sliced garlic,1 cup finely chopped onion,2 slit green chillies and saute them for few minutes.Add the 3/4 pound chopped avarakkai ,salt,sprinkle some water,cover it withh a lid and cook them on medium heat.Open the lid every 5 mins or so ,sprinkle water as needed and cook them till they are done.This way we dont overcook the vegetable and dont endup with mushy vegetable.

Milagu sambhar (Pepper Sambhar):

Method :

Heat oil in a pan.Add 1 tsp  mustard to it.When it pops add few curry leaves,1 tsp urad dhal,3 sliced garlic cloves,1 medium onion finely ,3 slit green chillies and saute them well.Add 3 finely chopped tomatoes and cook them for few minutes.Boil 1 cup thoor dhal in a pressure cooker and add it to the tomato mixture.Add salt,1/2tsp turmeric powder and some water and let it boil.Grind 1cup coconut and 1 tablespoon pepper to a fine paste adding some water.Add the coconut-pepper mixture and 3 tablespoons of  tamarind juice to the sambar and let it boil.Garnish with some coriander leaves.

Milagu sambhar recipe goes to Think Spice-Think pepper ,an event started by Sunitha. Divya is hosting it this month. .

And that’s how it’s done! 🙂

July 24, 2006

Aloo Bhatura

Posted in Dinner at 7:43 pm by messycooks


Maida/All Purpose flour : 2 cup

Aloo/Potatoes : 1 1/2 cup smashed

Oil for deep frying

salt for taste


  • Pressure cook potatoes and smash it without lumps when hot.(Do not let it cool)
  • Add salt to maida
  • Add potatoes(When warm) to maida little by little and make it dough.(Do not add water).
  • Make dough in small rounds and roll it one by one with roller making thick rounds.
  • Heat oil in pan.
  • Deep fry in oil until golden brown.

Serve it with Chana Masala. 


July 22, 2006

Adai Dosa

Posted in Dinner at 4:27 pm by messycooks


Toor Dhal – 1/2 cup

Chana Dhal – 1/4 cup

Rice – 1 cup

Red Chilis – 7

Cumin – 1 tsp

Coriander seeds – 1 tsp

Red Pearl Onions(small) – 15

Oil – for making dosa

salt for taste


Soak rice,Toor dhal,Chana dhal for 2 hours.Add red chilis ,cumin,coriander seeds,salt and grind it nicely.

Chop pearl onions in medium pieces and add  it in batter.Heat tawa and make like normal dosa(make the rounds thicker) adding oil.

Serve it with coconut chutney.

July 20, 2006

Rava Dosa

Posted in Dinner at 4:42 pm by messycooks


Rava – 2 cups

Rice flour – 1 cup

Green Chilis – 3 finely chopped

Ginger – 1 inch square piece finely chopped

Cumin – 1 1/2 tsp

Mustard seeds

Split urad dhal

Oil for frying


Soak rava for 2 hours.Add rice flour and water to it and grind it nicely.Heat oil in pan and add mustard seeds.After it poped up add urad dhal and leave it until it becomes light brown and then add cumin, finely chopped green chilis and ginger to it.Add this to the batter of rava and rice flour and add salt and mix it well.Add lot of water to the batter and make it very light..

Heat tawa in med high until heat spreads in all sides of tawa.Then take the batter and pour it in the corner of tawa and spread it inwards in a very thin layer.Pour 1 1/2 tsp of oil all over the layer.If needed add more oil.Turn it to the other side and leave it in med heat until it becomes crispy.Serve it with Sambar and coconut chutney.


Leave a minute to heat tawa after making each dosa.