Thursday, 26 April 2012

Poori Bhaji (Maami's Corner)

Nowadays everyone is conscious of what they eat, so much so pooris & other fried delicacies have disappeared from their daily menu.
Keeping the oil at the right temperature & ensuring that there’s minimum moisture in the material to be fried, you can successfully deep fry anything without making it soggy.

Whole wheat flour/atta: 1 cup (measured in a 200 ml cup)
Refined flour/maida: 1 cup
Semolina/rava: 1/2cup
Oil: to deep fry
Salt to taste
Water to knead


Mix atta, maida & rava together in a bowl.
Dissolve salt in water & knead the dough.
The dough has to be stiff.
Rest it for a while before rolling into small pooris.
Heat oil, fry pooris one at a time. Press the centre of the poori with a spoon, it will puff up, turn over & brown the other side too.
Drain on absorbent paper & serve with potato bhaji.
This quantity gives about 25 pooris.
 For the bhaji:
Potato: 200 g
Onion: 2 chopped
Green chilli: 2 chopped
Ginger: 1 tsp grated
Curry leaves: a few
Turmeric powder: 1/4tsp
Mustard seeds: ½ tsp
Black gram dal/urad dal: 1 tsp
Salt to taste
Oil: 1 tbsp

Wash potatoes well & pressure cook whole with skin for 7 minutes.
Cool, skin & mash them.
Heat oil in a pan, crackle mustard seeds, then add urad dal, when brown, add chopped onions, green chilli, ginger, curry leaves & turmeric powder.
Sauté well & add mashed potatoes & a cup of water.
Bring it to boil, add salt.
Serve with hot pooris.
If you like the consistency thick, do not pour water.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Murg Masala/ Chicken Masala (Party Menu)

This is how it looks initially.
Broiler chicken: 1
Onions: 6 sliced
Tomato: 6 chopped fine
Ginger-garlic paste: 1 tbsp
Red chilli powder: 1 tbsp
Cumin seeds: 2 tsps
Coriander powder: 1 tsp
Turmeric powder: 1/2tsp
Garam masala powder: 1 tsp
Lime juice: 1 tbsp
 Coriander leaves: 1 cup
Oil: 4 tbsps + for frying onions
Salt to taste


Clean chicken & cut into medium sized pieces.
Fry sliced onions brown, remove from oil & grind with ginger-garlic paste, chilli powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, garam masala powder, cumin seeds, lime juice & salt.
Marinate chicken with this paste for a minimum of 6 hours (keep in the refrigerator.)
Heat 4 tbsps oil in a pan, add marinated chicken & stir till it changes colour, for about 15 minutes.
Now, add chopped tomatoes. Keep stirring occasionally till it browns. (Do not cover & cook).
Sprinkle coriander leaves. Sauté till oil starts oozing from the sides of the pan.
Spicy & tangy chicken ready!
This takes about 45 minutes to cook on slow fire.
The end product!

"Varutharacha Kozhi" Curry (Traditional Fare)

Chicken: 500 g cut into bite-size pieces
Coconut: ½ grated
Coriander seeds: 1 tbsp
Dry red chilli: 6
Whole black pepper: 2 tsps
Fennel: 1 tsp
Cardamom: 2
Cloves: 4
Cinnamon: 1”piece
Shallots: 1 cup sliced
Garlic: 10 pods
Ginger: 1’piece
Turmeric powder: 1/2tsp
Curry leaves
Coconut oil: 2 tbsp
Salt to taste


To make the masala paste, first, dry roast coconut, coriander seeds, pepper, chilli, cardamom, cloves, fennel, cinnamon, a few curry leaves, ginger, garlic & shallots to a deep brown colour. Cool & grind without water.(This will give the paste a rich colour.)
In a kadai, pour oil, add chicken, stir till it changes colour.
Add turmeric powder, a cup of hot water.
Cover & cook till 3/4th done.
Now, put in the ground paste & add water according to the consistency you require.
Add salt & a few curry leaves, simmer on low flame till oil clears on top.
Serve with rice, idiappam or tapioca.
I prefer to use whole coriander & spices for the flavour they impart to the dish, also, you don’t have to worry about adulteration.

Monday, 16 April 2012

Raw jackfruit aviyal/chakka aviyal (Maami's corner)

Summer time in India means plenty of jackfruit & mangoes.  
Many a times when travelling in Kerala, we have seen jackfruits rotting away. Now, staying in Pune, we yearn for this fruit, for the many forms it can take in Kerala’s traditional cusine, as ERISSERY, AVIYAL, PUZHUKKU or CHIPS. 
Yes, it is available in the many “Kerala stores”  that continue to mushroom all over Pune & Mumbai, even though it is a bit pricey at Rs.50 per Kg. For a 10 kg fruit that should be....! Not bad for something that, not so long ago used to be rotting away with no takers!!  

Raw jackfruit: 250 g
Jackfruit seeds: 10 cut lengthwise
Drumstick: 2 cut into 2” pieces
Raw mango: 1 peeled & sliced
Coconut grating: ½ cup
Green chilli: 2
Red chilli powder: ½ tsp
Turmeric powder: ¼ tsp
Cumin seeds: ¼ tsp
Shallots: 3
Curry leaves: a few
Coconut oil: 1 tbsp
Salt to taste


Cook jackfruit, drumstick, jackfruit seeds & raw mango with turmeric powder, chilli powder & ½ a cup of water.
In the meantime, grind coconut, green chilli, shallots & cumin. ( adding a few fresh curry leaves will give a nice aroma.)
Add ground masala to the cooked vegetables & salt too.
Last, pour coconut oil & add a curry leaves.
Keep covered for sometime before serving.

"Kappa- Kallu shop" style (Traditional Fare)

Kappa/tapioca/cassava is something we Keralites enjoy, be it as chips, curry or just boiled.
“ Kappa Puzhukku”/tapioca curry is made with or without coconut. Here’s the recipe of the “kallu shop” style spicy Kappa Puzhukku to be served with a red fish curry!

Tapioca: 1 kg
Dry red chilli: 20 or KANDARI: 10
Cumin seeds/jeera: 1 tsp
Turmeric powder: 1/2tsp
Garlic: 5 pods
Shallots: 5 
Curry leaves: a few 
Coconut oil: 2 tbsps


Peel the skin & cut tapioca into small pieces. Boil 2 litres of water & add the tapioca, turmeric powder & salt.
Drain when done.
Grind dry chilli, garlic, cumin & shallots.
Make a hole in the centre of the cooked tapioca & put the ground masala into it & cover it.
Let it steam well. Mash it with a spoon.
Pour coconut oil & sprinkle curry leaves.
Mix it up well before serving.
This is spicy as it is, better still, if you serve with a fiery fish curry. 
That is the speciality of the “Kallu shop” style Kappa Puzhukku!