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Showing posts from October, 2013

Lemon Yogurt Cake with a secret ingredient

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Urad Daal, Vigno Mungo has superhuman (should I say superplant?) properties attributed to it - Good for bones, Good for diabetes, Anti inflammatory, Improves digestion, strength and vigour etc...  It is one of the two daals allowed during Shraddam.  Unsurprising, since it originated here in the Indian subcontinent.  (I am so proud that mango is Magnifera Indica, sounds like magnificent Indian ;)

Idli, Dosa, Adai and every tadka here in the south uses Urad daal, but in the dehusked and sometimes split form.  Medhu Vadai is the epitome of urad daal cooking, deep fried, donut shaped savoury snack.  I suck at making it.

The batter itself is an art, urad daal soaked for optimal time and ground to an airy paste with salt added just at the right time so that it doesn't release too much water before we start frying. The shape is even more complicated, I never get the donut shape and I simply abandon it in favour of the north Indian dahi-vada shape - an ellipsoid.  I also have a tough ti…

Mango Chocolate Marbled Cake

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It rained cows and horses Sunday night, Monday morning 6 am felt like 2 am. DH who pretends to go to bed at 9.30 just to put my younger one to sleep, always ends up asleep by 10 and awake early.  I think it is just old age.   He listened to local news and found schools were left off for the day.  Yay!
I woke my older son around 8.30 yelling I overslept and he is late for school and he will have to miss his Physics midterm.  He woke up in shock and said no problem he will brush and get dressed, I can drop him at school.  Exams start only at 9.   I let him rush to the bathroom and got busy making the marbled cake to dam the  flood of righteous anger that would follow my little trick ;)
This is one of the few Nigella Lawson recipes that work perfectly for me.  I had to tweak a little of course, it is in my DNA.  It is still a little over the top, but what the heck, you live only once.  I have tried both the mango version and the orange version, mocha taste always dominates. 200g butter, …

Back to school specials - Stuffed theplas

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My cousin says she packs breakfast and lunch for her hubby in 30 - 45 min flat.  30 min seems impossible, 45 doable.  I decided this school year I will track my time and manage to pack my son's lunch in 1 hour; This means I will have to postpone coffee though  I will have my hot water + honey + lemon.  I will also spare 15 - 20 minutes to do Pranayama.  So, wake up at 5:30, go go go go, lunch and a breakfast ready by 6.50.  Then sit down to a  steaming cup of coffee. 
One of the first lunches I packed was a roll with sprouts and panner stuffing. The rotis are a variation of the Methi Thepla, I didnt have methi or pottukadalai in sufficient quantity. Thandu Keerai is Amaranth, a very good source of iron and has none of the bitterness of methi.  It's stem is very sturdy and can be made into a sambhar, definitely not something you would add to roti dough.
1 small bunch of Thandu Keerai Leaves only cleaned and shopped. (previous night)1/3 cup pottukadalai, ground to a fine powder…

Methi Paratha / Thepla

Nothing reflects the rising cost of fresh fruits and vegetables better than greens in Chennai, especially the slightly more North Indian ones like Methi and Palak.  Methi which had never exceeded 15 Rs now sells for a shocking 30 Rs on the streets of Besantnagar, on the rare occasions you actually find it!.
I normally buy vegetables and fruits from the road side hawkers - even if the cost is a 10 - 20% higher, it is a question of survival of small businesses and hopefully the produce is a little more fresh and a lot more local.  I visit big stores for exotic produce mostly, this time I found Methi in Pazhamuthir Cholai at a lovely 10Rs a bunch!  I bought 2 and we have had methi everything this week - Methi Sambhar, Methi leaves in Paniyaram and finally yesterday Methi Thepla a.k.a Methi Paratha in my house.
Gau has exams this week, he spends 2 hours in school writing the paper, then comes home and mopes around the house hardly studying and grabbing every second he can on the iPad and…