Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Mukka Pachadi


Summer doesn't end without my mom making this pickle. After pickling 'Avakaya', there are left over raw mangoes which don't have strong pit, these are the lucky ones which get pickled into 'Mukka Avakaya' and hence get eaten away within a week, instead of staying in the 'Jadi'(earthen pot) for rest of the year.

The process is very simple and the flavor is surprisingly very strong. The trick is fenugreek powder instead of regular mustard powder. Another good thing about this pickle is you can make this in matter of minutes and don't have to sun dry anything. You don't need mangoes that have strong pit, even the regular one's with soft pit are fine. Just pick the one's which are sour. The sourer the better.

INGREDIENTS:

1. 1 large raw, sour mango- not peeled and cut into very small pieces.



2. 4 to 5 spoons of fenugreek, roasted evenly and powdered fine.
3. 4 spoons of salt
4. 4 spoons of red chilli powder
5. pinch of turmeric




INGREDIENTS FOR TAMPERING:

6. 5 spoons of sesame oil
7. 2 spoons of mustard seeds
8. pinch of fenugreek seeds
9. 2 whole red chillies
10. 4-5 dashes of hing

Process:

Step1: Take a medium sized bowl and add finely chopped mango pieces.

Step2: Add turmeric, salt, chilli powder and fenugreek powder. Mix throughly. Cover
and leave for 3 hrs.



The mango mixture becomes slightly moist as salt dissolves.



Step3: Do the tampering with ingredients 6-10. Let the tampering come to room
temperature before adding to the mango mixture.

Stir well and serve with piping hot rice and a dallop of ghee.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Tribute to Veturi !!

An intimate communion of touching lyrics and Veturi Garu is what we hear and feel in every song he wrote for us. The world of music looks so void without him...

Honestly, I cannot think of one song that is on top of my head right now, but here is one that is my all time favorite...

'Chinukula Rali"

Will miss you Veturi Garu....will miss you earnestly..

Madhoo....

Friday, May 21, 2010

Dosakaya Mukka Pachadi



Who ever invented or discovered this recipe, is to me a genius in the cooking world. Now, before you say that I am exaggerating, I have a good explanation. All the fresh chutneys or 'Rotti Pachalldu' that we prepare with fresh vegetables are either shallow fried in oil or steam baked. However, this pachadi is prepared with raw 'Dosakaya', yes you saw that right and believe me you won't be complaining at all. And to my wonder I really cannot imagine 'Dosakaya Pachadi' any other way at all.

Not to mention the nutrients, low calorie value and ultra flavorful taste.

Dosakaya(yellow Indian cucumber) is a vegetable very low in calories and very high in nutrients and fiber. Here is a scoop on the total number of calories in this recipe.

Chutney made with 1 medium Dosakaya yields about 5 to 6 servings.

Approximate amount of total calories :300

Ease of preparation :Very Easy

INGREDIENTS:

1. 1 medium Dosakaya. Wash and peel. As Dosakaya has seeds, taste both the flesh and the seeds. If the seeds are bitter, scoop and garbage them or the chutney will not be edible. If the flesh is slightly bitter then you can still use it, but if its very bitter then you will have to dump it too and pick another Dosakaya. Also pick a firm one not soft or mushy one.

2. 1 bunch of Cilantro. Washed and chopped.

3. 1 1/2 spoon of Sesame or Peanut oil.

4. 1 spoon each of Urad dal and Mustard seeds.

5. Pinch of fenugreek seeds and couple of dashes of hing.

6. 2 red chillies.

7. 5 or 6 green chillies or as per taste.

8. 4 to 5 spoons of tamarind pulp.



Method:

Step 1: Take 1 1/2 spoons of Sesame oil or Peanut oil in a wok.

Step 2: Add Urad dal, Mustard seeds, Fenugreek seeds, Pinch of hing and red chilles.

Step 3: Add green chillies, switch off the stove and put a lid.

Step 4: Let the tampering cool a bit.




Step 5: Coarsely blend tampered ingredients. Add Cilantro and blend some more. Salt.

Step 6: Add tamarind pulp and blend some more.

Step 7: Remove the blended ingredients into a bowl and add finely chopped raw Dosakaya and some more Cilantro.

Step 8: Stir in well and check for salt.

Serve with hot rice and ghee.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Vankaya Kothimera Kharam


Cilantro is like the ingredient in my kitchen. I really cannot imagine my kitchen without it. That said I always added a handful of Cilantro leaves in all my curries including 'Vankaya'(eggplant/brinjal).

But my co-sister's family is from Godavari District and I heard of this recipe at her home. This recipe was talked about for quite a while until I decided to give it a try and to my amazement I could not believe the flavor and taste that a big bunch of Cilantro and Green Chilli paste added to this otherwise normal curry.

Not to mention the total Calories! Check it out yourself...

Total amount of Calories (approximately) - 300
Total servings - 4
Ease of prepartion - Very easy
Nutrition Value - Medium

INGREDIENTS:

1. 1 medium Chinese egg plant(rounded one) or 2 lengthy Indian store brinjals (my preference). Wash and chop into chunks.



2. 2 cups of chopped Cilantro



3. 4 to 5 green chillies or as per taste
4. 1 spoon peanuts (optional)
5. stalk of curry leaves
6. 1/2 spoon urad dal
7. 1/2 spoon channa dal
8. 1/2 spoon mustard seeds
9. 1 red chilli broken into pieces
10. Salt per taste

METHOD:

Step 1: Add 1 spoon of sesame oil to iron a skillet or bhandi

Step 2: Add peanuts, urad dal, channa dal, mustard seeds, red chilli and curry leaves. Let them fry.

Step 3: Add chopped brinjal.

Step 4: Salt and stir. Don't put a lid. Let them fry a bit on medium flame.

Step 5: Blend coarsely Cilantro and green chillies. Set aside.




Step 6: When brinjal feels cooked add the Cilantro and Chilli mixture.

Step 7: Fold in gently and let them cook for another 5 mins before turning it off.



Serve 'Vankaya Kothimera Kharam' with piping hot rice and ghee.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Apple Avakaya



This morning I had a strong craving for tart and strong South Indian 'Avakaya' which is typical made from raw and sour Mangoes. Back in Guntur this is the season for pickles. From regular 'Avakaya' to 'Bellam Avakaya', from specialities like 'Nuvvu Pappu Avakaya' to 'Bapaya Avakaya' every home is busy in preparing either Mustard powder base long standing pickles or Fenugreek powder based short term pickles which last for about a month.

I remember my aunts and grandmother used to gather at our home in Guntur where they all discussed the ratio's of 'Avapindi' to 'Salt' to 'Chilli Powder'. Every year it was new to them and every year the pickle came out different and more spicy. The jargon is so nostalgic. 'Peda Rasallu', 'Nuvulla Nune', 'Kalda Uppu', 'Baldari Kharam'..... so on..

So, finally I decided not to kill the tradition of cravings for Avakaya and picked up tart Granny Smith Apples from local grocer's. Honestly, I can't complain at all. It took me less than 10 mins of preparation time.

I am not filling in the calorie details today, I will come back to it later. I am quite eager to post my blog today...

INGREDIENTS:

1. 2 granny smith tart apples. Wipe, dry, cube without seeds with skin.
2. 7 spoons of mustard seeds. Powder fine in mixer/blender.
3. 4 heaped spoons of salt
4. 4-5 heaped spoons of chilli powder
5. 15 pods of garlic (optional)
6. 1/2 spoon fenugreek seeds
7. 1/2 spoon cumin seeds
8. pinch of turmeric
9. 3/4 cup of Sesame oil only.




Yields about 3 to 4 cups of pickle. Pickle stays for about 20 to 30 days.

PREPARATION:

Step 1: First take a big dry bowl and place the cubed apples in there.



Step 2: Add Salt, Chilli powder and Mustard powder.

Step 3: Using your hand mix thoroughly from inside out. You will feel the moisture oozing out of the apples.

Step 4: Add garlic pods, fenugreek, cumin and turmeric.

Step 5: Again stir well using your hand.




Step 6. Leave for about 1/2 hour, this lets salt dissolve.

Step 7. Pour in 1/4 cup of oil, gently stir again.

Step 8. Leave aside for half day. Moisture will come out of the apples.

Step 9. Pour in rest of the oil and let it sit for another half day.

Stir and serve with piping hot rice, ghee and papad...

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mothers Day to All!

If there is one thing that describes me the most and in totality then its 'Motherhood' and the fact that I am a mother. I have become a better person after giving birth to my son. Not to mention the fact that I gained enormous amount of patience too.

This mother's day has also been special to me job wise. After almost an year long search for job, I landed on my offer letter and gladly signed it. Hence the lapse in blogging these days.

I promised myself to catch up on the blogging world in a week or two once things have settled down a bit.

Until then, wishing all my readers a very happy Mothers Day.

To my Amma - 'I love you Amma... missing you!'

Madhoo

Friday, April 23, 2010

Pushpa Vilapam.... ! (Flower's lament)


Hmmm.....! After a short break of about 3 weeks from the blogging world, today I decided to write my post about what Iam reading lately. Other than few famous novels, non-fictions, I took up to read Karunasree Jandhyala Papaih Sastry's Poem "Pushpa Vilapam".

The beautiful poem in Telugu has been translated by Sri Kandregula Amba Prasada Rao into English and I have to say he has done a splendid job.

There are many stanza's to this poem, however I decided to pick 2 which I like the most.
Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

In Telugu....

"ma' velalEni mugdha sukuma'ra sugamdha maramda ma'dhurii
jiivitamella miikai tyajimci kRuSimci naSimcipOva ma'
yauvanamella kollagoni a' pai ciipurutODa cimmi ma
mma'vala pa'ravaiturugada'! naraja'tiki niiti yunnada'? "



Translated into English....

While our priceless and innocent,
Delicate, nectarean and fragrant
Life, for you is sacrificed and frayed
Withered and laid utterly destroyed -
Ravishing our youth, sweep with broom - Alas !
Is there morality among the Human Race ?


In Telugu...

"Ulu da'ra'latO gomtu kuri bigimci
gumDelOnumDi soodulu grucci koorci
muDucu komduru muccaTa muDula mammu
akaTa! dayalEniva'ru mii ya'Duva'ru! "



Translated into English...

Strangling us with wool and rings,
Piercing bosoms with needles and strings,
Adorn with us your braids fancy-
Alas! ye women are sans mercy.


I am no expert in reading telugu, unfortunately I have to blame it on my KV (central school) schooling. However, I decided to correct my telugu so that I can enjoy our rich telugu literature. For the first time I miss being fluent in reading Telugu while I struggle to read 'Pushpa Vilapam'.

There is a famous quote by Mark Twain, "The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them".

You never know which book it is that will change your life for good, so keep reading.

For now.. its 'Pushpa Vilapam' for me....

Until next time...happy reading to you all....