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Monday, January 28, 2013

Prawns Biriyani (Shrimp/ Chemmeen/Konju)

               Finally !!! This was something I wanted to post long back...since this is a common dish which I prepare for most occasions, right from the time I started learning to cook...Yes..!! It's with biriyanis that I really came into this wonderful world of cooking...But never got time to click pics & write it out...I prepared this with loads of love for my hubby as he is really crazy of prawns..

             Right from my childhood, have helped my mom in layering the biriyani & to garnish it as well.. & start licking my fingers soon after that...Sweet memories...Though there are many steps involved in the preparation of a biriyani...each mouthful is totally worth ..You'll enjoy enjoy each & every step too... As the crazy aroma would be breezing your whole house...This is my mom's recipe which I still follow..Never felt like searching for a new one...The same procedure can be used for any biriyanis..
           Apart from any other biriyanis...I personally feel prawns as the tastiest & easiest one...Make any occasion even more special by serving this delicious one-dish meal.... Biriyani goes really well with a green salad(onion as the main ingredient), any special pickle and raita of your choice...

So let's start the journey into the making of a biriyani..!!
Hoping your feedback & some special biriyani memories too.. 

Ingredients  (for masala)

1.Prawns-1 kg
2.Onion-5 (large..sliced)
3.Green chilly-6-7
4.Garlic-15 pods
6.Tomato-2 (large)
7.Coriander powder-1 tbsp
8.Pepper-1/2 to 1 tsp
9.Turmeric powder-1/4 tsp
10.Yoghurt-1 tbsp
11.Lemon juice- 2 tsp
12.Garam masala-1 tsp
13.Coriander leaves-1 tbsp or little more
14.Mint leaves-1 tbsp or little more
15.Ghee + Oil
16.Salt- as required

Ingredients (of prawns fry)

17.Chilly powder-1 tsp
18.Pepper-1/2 tsp
19.Salt-1/2 tsp
20.Garam masala-1/2 tsp

Preparation (of prawns)

~Clean the prawns as shown in the below image.(I have googled this image since i couldn't take pics while doing this..)

~Wash the de-veined prawns thoroughly & wash with little vinegar & salt too..& drain properly.
~Mix the ingredients for the prawn fry with little water & make a thick paste.
~Spread the paste over the prawns.
~Heat oil in a fry pan.
~Shallow fry both the sides of the prawns in batches & shift them to paper tissues & keep aside.

Preparation (of masala)

~Heat 1 tsp ghee with 1 tbsp oil in a non-stick cookware.
~Saute the sliced onions with 1/2 tsp salt.

~Meanwhile grind green chillies, garlic & ginger & keep aside.
~Once the onions become transparent add the chopped tomatoes & saute till mushy.

~Now add the grinded items & mix well & cook for 2 mins.
~Add the powders...Coriander powder, pepper & turmeric powder & mix & cook for 1 min.

~Now its time to add the fried prawns & mix safely.

~Cook for 3 mins.
~Add yoghurt, lime juice, garam masala, chopped mint leaves & coriander leaves..Mix well & close the lid & cook for sometime.(5-10 mins in low flame)
~Check the taste & adjust salt & pepper accordingly.
~Remove from flame & keep aside.

Ingredients (for rice)

1.Basmati rice-2 1/2 cup
2.Water-3 1/4 cup (depends on the type of rice used)
3.Lemon juice-1 tsp
4.Salt- accordingly
7.Cinnamon-2 piece
8.Ghee-2 tsp
9.Onion-1 (medium)

Preparation (of rice)

~Wash the rice thoroughly & drain.
~Heat 1 tsp ghee & 1 tsp oil in pressure cooker.(or in which you do cook your rice)
~Roast cardamom, cinnamon, cloves & bay leaf for 1 min.
~Saute the sliced onion till transparent.
~Now add the washed rice & stir fry for 2 mins in low flame.
~Add the required water with salt & lemon juice & mix well.
~Pressure cook till 2 whistles .
~Off the flame & let the steam release by itself. 

Ingredients (for packing/layering)

1.Onion-2 (small)(finely sliced)
2.Cashew Nuts- 10 (slit into 2 pieces each)
3.Raisins-1-2 tbsp
4.Pineapple essence-1 tsp or more
5.Rose water- 2 tbsp
6.Mint & Coriander leaves- 1 tbsp

Packing(Layering) of Biriyani

~Fry nuts & raisins & finely sliced onion in ghee/oil & keep aside.

~Take 5 tbsps of prepared rice in a small bowl & mix pineapple essence in it.
~Take a large, deep, heavy bottomed, non-stick dish in which to prepare the biriyani.
~Heat 1/2 tsp of ghee & spread inside the dish & remove from flame.

~Start layering the dish with rice as first layer.
~Then layer with the prepared masala.
~Then again layer with rice.
~Above that sprinkle little of the pineapple essenced rice..Also little roasted onion, nuts & raisins.
~Now reapeat by layering the masala & then again the rice.
~Now final garnishing.
~Sprinkle the whole of essenced rice along with roasted onions, nuts & cashews.
~Sprinkle rose water on the sides of the dish.
~Press the top of the layered biriyani with a spoon evenly.
~Garnish with mint & coriander leaves.
~Close the lid & simmer till little steam comes from inside the biriyani.. (almost 10 mins.)
~Off the flame & serve...

Really craving for another biriyani soon...!!

Don't forget to share your biriyani memories below..:)

Linking to :  Hema's Cooking with Spices - Cloves 

Linking to :  Sara's Traditional and Native Recipes 


Saturday, January 26, 2013

Easy Semiya Payasam/ Vermicelli Kheer (Indian Dessert)

             This is  a very popular traditional Indian dessert, which is usually prepared at all special days including birthday, wedding or other festive occasions....It has a rich and creamy which vermicelli is sweetened with milk...Served warm, cold, or at room temperature, this creamy, delicious milk pudding is sure to please every age..Its the basic recipe here, but we can do a lot of improvisations to this to make it in your own style.... 

      So gonna enjoy this Republic day with something really sweet...something really INDIAN..I suppose..



1.Semiya (Vermicelli)-  200 gm (1 1/2 cup)
2.Water- 2 cup
3.Milk-1 litre
4.Sugar -12 tbsp
5.Ghee-2-3 tbsp
6.Nuts-1-2 tbsp
7.Raisins-2-3 tbsp
8.Milkmaid Condensed milk- 180 gm (2 small tins) (optional-else you can add extra sugar)
9.Cardamom powder (elakka podi/elaichi)-1 tsp
10.Salt- a pinch 


~Heat ghee in large non-stick heavy bottomed cookware or uruli.
~Roast nuts & then raisins & keep them aside.

~Into this ghee stir roast the semiya for 2 mins.
~Now add water & let it boil.

~Once it starts boiling add the milk & mix well & allow it to boil. (stir occasionally)

~When it starts boiling & raises, reduce the flame to low.
~Add milkmaid condensed milk & mix well.
~Check the sweetness & add the sugar accordingly .
~Cook till the semiya is soft (Take little in a spoon, cool it  & check)

~Off the flame & add the roasted nuts, raisins,salt & cardamom powder & mix well.

  Easy, Tasty & Yummyy Payasam is ready to serve !!

             As it cools down, it gets thicker.... So if you want 'Drinkable' payasam, add more milk accordingly... 
You can serve hot or cold or at room temperature too...
I love it in all ways !!

Linking to :  Sara's Traditional and Native Recipes 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Banana Scrambled Egg Sweet - Kids Special !!

             This is a sweet I used to have in my childhood...Its a trademark of my mom.... Never have I seen this sweet being sold in any shop nor anyone making it except my sweet mom....I have seen many cooking the same sweet with only bananas(plantains), but not along with eggs..The natural taste of bananas & eggs meshes  together & gives a perfect blend of taste along with the special aroma of cardamoms...The riper the banana is, the easier it is to digest & yes...the more tastier...!!

             This is a very easy and sweet recipe with nutritious value and health benefits specially for kids..After an age of 1, this would be something perfect as an evening snack for them...Lets see the benefits of each item used in this recipe...

1.Bananas (Sweet plantain/ethakka) are without a doubt one of the tastiest, healthiest convenience foods that are available all year round.... They are an excellent source of carbohydrate, the preferred fuel for muscle activity...Very good for pregnant women...If you feel your baby to be slim, try this out...

2.Palm jaggery (karipetti)/Jaggery (sharkkara) is a natural sweetner and Energy Food...Its  rich in calcium, iron and other useful vitamins and minerals...It may be used sufficiently by people who suffer from diabetes...It is used as a substitute of sugar in the preparation of coffee, tea, etc....If you feel your kid is anaemic, or somewhat pale..palm jaggery is the answer...(high iron content)

3.Eggs as you all know apart from being inexpensive, they are a superfood which contain large amounts of protein, amino acids, vitamins & minerals....It has been proved that a breakfast with a boiled or poached egg before children goes to school may help them boost energy and improve their brain power.... The unborn baby also has a higher IQ when expectant mothers routinely intake one or two eggs a day.... Its also an important source of vitamin D, which is important in strengthening the bones and improving immunity.... & Many more benefits to say ..!!

The rest is milk,ghee & cardamom powder which is also very beneficial in their own ways for your kids...So here comes a perfect breakfast or an nutritious evening snack...

1.Ripe Plantain (ethakka)/Banana-2
3.Palm Jaggery (karipetti)/Jaggery (sharkara)/ Sugar-As required
4.Ghee/oil-1 tbsp
5.Milk-4 tbsp 
6.Cardamom powder-1/2 tsp or more


~Chop the plantains & keep them ready.
~Heat ghee/oil in a saucepan & saute the chopped bananas.
~Cover the lid & cook in medium flame till it becomes tender. (stir occasionally)
~Meanwhile melt palm jaggery/jaggery/sugar with little water & keep in low flame.
~Once the bananas are tender enough pour the melted palm jaggery with milk into this & mix well.
~Crack an egg into this with cardamom powder & stir well & cook for 1 min & remove from flame ..
~Check the sweetness & adjust accordingly.
~Garnish with desired nuts..

Linking to :  Sara's Traditional and Native Recipes 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Sweet Gooseberry Juice/ Nellikka(Amla) Juice

           Gooseberry has a sour taste and a sweet after taste.... Mostly people find it difficult to have the juice as it is salty & sour enough...So lets try something different..A sweeter version...This juice resembles the taste of lemon juice + sugarcane juice...Yes...the taste is really amazing ...I have tried this for the first time in my hubby's house...& it was a grand success...All were really fond of this juice....& more and more gooseberries were bought to me to prepare this juice & store in the refrigerator... So whoever comes..or whenever one feels thirsty...Gooseberry juice was at call..... If interested you can add little ginger juice to this...for the extra punch....

            The juice, prepared from this fruit is highly rejuvenating and nutritious.... Regular intake of Gooseberry juice helps in digestion, brings glow to the skin and hair, it even prevents hair from getting white.... The season of this fruit begins in December and extends to April with the  highest content of Vitamin C  which  helps in reducing blood cholesterol by dilating the blood vessels and there by reducing the blood pressure..... It also strengthens heart muscles.....Daily dose of gooseberry can relive you from day-today stresses....You can take out gooseberry juice and can even store and preserve it to use after the season.....


1.Gooseberry (Nellikka/Amla)-4 (large for 1 long glass)
2.Sugar-4-5 tbsp (or more)
3.Water-1 glass (in which you are serving)
4.A good strainer


~Cut/Chop the gooseberries deseeding them.
~Grind the thick sliced gooseberries.
~Add this to the blender along with 1/2 glass water & blend well.
~Filter/Strain off the grinded gooseberries to get a clean extract.
~Clean your blender with little water & then add the juice extract to this along with rest of the water to dilute it & also add sugar & blend well.
~Now open up & give it a taste..
~Adjust the sugar accordingly....
~Repeat the steps unless all the gooseberry pieces are used up.
~Refrigerate the juice in a glass or plastic  container. 
~You can store and use this juice for 15 days.

Linking to :  Sara's Traditional and Native Recipes 

& Priya's Page.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Cabbage Pakoda/ Fritters (Patta Gobi Ke Pakore)

            This is an easy Indian Snack...Onion pakoras (Ulli vada) are the common ones which is accompanied by cabbage...No one will find out the hidden veggie ....If you have picky eaters who do not touch cabbage this might be one way to sneak it in....& include it in your healthy diet too...Cabbage is rich in calcium & pottassium & is great for controlling blood pressure...

           Just serve warm with a hot cup of tea on a rainy day and you have a snack to provide comfort to your body, mind and soul....A great gathering crunchy snack prepared as a surprise for guests.... Do give it a shot this evening....!!


1.Cabbage (chopped) - 1 cup
2.Onion (chopped) - 1 (large)/ 1/2 cup
3.Green chilly (finely chopped) - 2
4.Ginger garlic paste/grated - 1 tsp
5.Curry leaves (finely chopped)- 2 springs
6.Gram flour/ Kadalamavu - 1 cup
7.Salt- 1/2 tsp
8.Chilly powder- 1/4 tsp
9.Turmeric powder- 1/4 tsp
10.Baking powder-1/4 tsp
11.Cornflour / Rice flour-1 tbsp (optional)
12.Cumin seeds powder-3/4 tsp (optional)


~Chop all the ingredients from 1 to 5.

~Add the powders to it along with little water to make a thick batter.

~Its better if you mix with your hands.
~Do give it a slight taste & adjust salt & chilly powder accordingly.

~Heat oil in a kadai.
~Spoon out the mix & drop the mix with another spoon into the oil...So your hands would be safe.. 

~Fry them in batches of 4 to 6 ...

~Fry both sides until golden brown & transfer them to paper towels..

Yummm... Yummm...Yummy snacks ready to serve with tomato ketchup or mint-coriander chutney..!!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Kerala Spicy Sardine/Chala/Mathi Curry (Mulaku Curry)

            This is a simple fish curry which is very very common in most Keralites menus....Sardines known as Mathi or Chala is well known as the ‘poor man’s fish’ as it is  easily available and inexpensive, nutritious because of the abundance of omega 3 fatty acids in them.....and of course delicious in dishes.....this red hot curry is made perfectly using Kudampuli... I love to fry sardines or make a curry with lots of chilies. ...Goes well with hot rose matta rice/any rice ,roti, Kappa puzhukku


1.Sardines(Chala/Mathi) or any fish- 1 kg
2.Mustard seeds (kaduku)-3/4 tsp
3.Fenugreek seeds (uluva)-1/2 tsp
4.Onion-2 or 3 (medium)/ shallots (cheriya ulli)-12
5.Tomato-1 (big)
6.Chilly powder-2 tbsp
7.Coriander powder-1/2 tbsp
8.Turmeric powder-1/4 tsp (optional)
9.Black peppercorns (crushed/grinded)-1/2 tsp
10.Fenugreek powder (uluva podi)-1/4 tsp
11.Kerala Black Tamarind (Kudampuli)- as per reqd.
12.Water- 3 cups
13.Curry leaves-2-3 springs
14.Cornflour/Raw rice powder (pachari podichathu)-1 tbsp
15.Shallots- 4/ Onion- 1 small (in blender)
16.Milk/Coconut milk-3 tbsp (optional)
17.Fennel seeds powder-3/4 tsp


~Clean your fish with water & also with vinegar & salt & keep aside. 

~Heat your kadai/ indian wok(man chatti) with 3 tbsps of oil.
~Add mustard seeds & wait till they pop.
~Then reduce the flame & add fenugreek seeds & stir.
~Add sliced onions along with 1/2 tsp salt & saute well in medium flame.
~Add chopped tomato & saute until mushy in high to medium flame.

~Meanwhile blend chilly powder, crushed pepper powder, coriander powder, fennel seeds powder, turmeric powder, thickly chopped shallots/onion along with 1 cup water.

~When the tomatoes are ready, pour the blended mix to the kadai along with tamarind pieces for sourness & allow it to boil.
~When boiling pour rest of the 2 cups water & mix well.

~Check the salt, sourness & spice & adjust accordingly.
~Add fenugreek powder, curry leaves & mix well.
~Now add your cleaned fish 1 by 1 into the boiling curry.

~Make sure all the fish is immersed in the curry& close the lid & cook for 15 mins in high flame.
~Slightly rotate the kadai occasionally without the lid...instead of stirring with a avoid breaking of fish..
~Combine cornflour/ raw rice powder in 2-3 tbsp of water & pour into the curry along with milk, curry leaves & mix well by rotating..
~Cook for 5 more mins in low flame.
~Remove from flame & keep the lid closed for atleast 10 mins..

Spicy fish curry readyy !!!!

Had a scrumptious dinner with fish curry & kappa...

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