Thursday, August 27, 2009

Kulambu milagai thool

The word kulambu milagai thool brings me the memories of the days when people rush towards the grinding mill with their big size vessels with handle (the vessel is called thookku pathiram in Tamil) filled with sundried spices at least once a month. Even though my mom had a different version of making the powder / mixture...I started using this powder recently. It is the basic powder for many delicious South Indian curries.

Kulambu milagai thool is an all purpose curry powder used in many Indian houses. It is similar to the sambar powder except for some ingredients and the large amount of dry red chilly.
This powder can be used in making puli kulambu,kara kulambu, vatha kulambu, meen (fish) kulambu or any non vegetarian curry.

Kuzhambu mil'agai thool / All purpose curry powder


(Multiply the below ratio to get bulk quantity. If you are interested in grinding large quantities in a mill, then sun drying the below items is the best idea.)
Dry red chilly - 2 cup
coriander seed - 1 cup
cumin - 1/4 cup
Black pepper - 1/4 cup
Asafoetida - tiny piece (1/4 inch cube)
Channa dhal - 1/4 cup
fenugreek (venthayam) - 1 tsp
Curry leaf - 2 brigs

Dry roast all the items given above individually .
Roast the curry leaves till it looses all the moisture.
Let it cool completely.
Grind to a fine powder using a coffee grinder / Indian mixer.
Spread it to cool again.
Store in an airtight container for use.
No need to refrigerate it.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Ginger chicken (Indian version)

Ginger chicken is a chinese dish. Sometime before, I tasted this chicken dish in a restaurant in Tuticorin (TN, India) with more Indian touch. It was so tangy and spicy drenched with all that ginger .
Here I should mention, Tuticorin is famous for exotic non vegetarian food.
I tried many permutations and combination to arrive at a formula to make this.
So here is my version of ginger chicken.


Chicken (boneless) - 1 lb (1/2 kg)
Ginger - 50 gm
clove - 5
cinnamon - 1 inch
black pepper - 1 tsp
Red chilly powder - 1 tsp
Red color - 3 drops
Salt - to taste
egg - 1
lemon - (1 juice)
plain Indian yogurt - 4 tbsp
AP flour / maida - 1 tbsp
oil - To deep fry


Cut the chicken into small cubes.
Grind the ginger to a fine paste along with cinnamon, cloves, salt and black pepper. Marinate the chicken with all items given above except the oil for 2 hrs or overnight in fridge.

Heat oil in a wok and deep fry the marinated chicken pieces till it is completely cooked. keep aside.

To Temper (finishing touch):
Onion - 1 (big)
oil - 1 tbsp
salt - to taste (3/4 tsp)
curry leaf - 1 sprig
Red chilly powder - 1 tsp
Lemon - 1
slivered ginger - a handful

Cut the onion into thin long pieces.
Heat a wok with a tbsp oil.
Add the onion and fry for a while till it gets half cooked.
Then put the curry leaf, salt, chilli powder, the fried chicken and mix well.

Put off stove.
Squeeze the lime juice and add the finely slivered ginger pieces. Check for salt.
Mix well and serve hot.

Serving suggestion:

This is a dry curry.
Goes well with chapathi, roti and rice.
Serves 6 people.


Ginger chicken goes as the 'Side dish for chapathi', an event hosted by me.
Rush your entries before September 15, 2009.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Garlic milk

How about a drink that fights the bad cholesterol , provides immunity and puts you to a good night sleep? Here is it, prepared in viki's kitchen to make you all fall in love with milk.
This is a medicinal drink prepared with garlic and milk. Surprisingly the presence of garlic will not be felt in that milk and I am sure every one will like it.
Sending this recipe to Sanghi's FIL - Milk event. Grab it before it gets cold:)

Poondu paal / garlic milk:

Milk - 2 cups
sugar / palm crystalline sugar (panai karkandu) - 3 tbsp
Garlic - 6 pearls

Boil the milk . Add finely sliced garlic along with sugar and cook till the garlic becomes soft.

Serving suggestions:
Serve hot as bed time milk. The left out garlic should be consumed.
Good for reducing the body fat and bad cholesterol.
Helps lactating mothers , improves immunity, cures allergies, cold and to control blood pressure .


The following entries are for Sanghi's FIL - Milk event.

Milk Porridge:

Paal payasam:

The below entry is for EC's WYF: Breakfast event.

Venn Pongal:

This carrot cake goes to Raaji's Anniversary special cake event.

Carrot cake (Easter theme):

Sending the below dinner for the Cooking for guest event by Rak's Kitchen.

A Simple Pizza dinner:

I am reposting the following sweets for the Festive food event conducted by Purva and Priti.
Sesame ladoo and mothagam are prepared during the Vinayagar Chathurthi festival. Click the links below to read more.

Sesame Ladoo

Mothagam (kolukkattai):

Wishing you all a very happy Vinayagar Chathurthi!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Aval vellam

Aval vellam is a special offering prepared during Saraswathi pooja and Krishna Jeyanthi. Because of its simplicity , we can prepare this sweet in just 10 minutes.
I am sending this sweet dish to Shanthi's State special event on behalf of TamilNadu and Purva's Festive food event for krishna Jeyanthi.


Poha / beaten rice / aval (thicker variety)- 1 1/4 cup
vellam / jaggery / brown sugar - 3/4 cup
shredded coconut - 1/2 cup
cashew - 10
cardamom - 3
Raisin - 10
almond slices - 10

Wash and clean the poha. Soak it for 3 minutes and drain the water completely.
Take 1/2 cup of water in a wok and heat it along with the jaggery.
As the jaggery dissolves, filter and remove the impurities.
Again heat it to achieve a thicker solution called one string consistency.
(One string consistency means, if you take the stirring spoon out of the jaggery solution and if you can get a thing string dripping as the last drop , it is called so).
Mix the poha, cashews, shredded coconut, powdered cardamom, raisin , almond and stir well.
Immediately switch off the flame.
Aval vellam is ready!

We can roast the nuts and raisins in ghee before adding. But I stick to the more simpler old version.

Serving suggestions:
In my home town, this sweet is served as a starter snack during festive occasions as soon as the guest arrives.
Serves 4 people.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Murungakkai masala poriyal

Drumstick is a very common vegetable in India. That too in the southern India, we cannot see a home garden without the drumstick tree. All the parts of the tree are of medicinal value. More over who can deny the taste of the sambar and curry made out of those freshly plucked drumsticks. So it is the favorite tree for many Indian housewives.Here I should mention, if we go on plucking the leaves of the tree it will not yield much drumsticks during the season. So it is a good idea to grow another tree also for our 'keerai' (greens) purpose.

Back home, my mom grew a big drumstick tree for our vegetable need and one small tree to reap the greens:) .
Even now the trees are serving the neighborhood along with some tales on mom's gardening and cooking skills.
Yeah, that is the gift we get by planting trees.....

During my 8 th standard summer vacation, Mom taught me to prepare this murungakkai masala koottu as my first dish....though I cannot tell u about my improper shaped hard dosas:) .Slowly I learned more dishes during that vacation .
I remember me announcing occasional kitchen holidays for mom from bed coffee to night dinner without allowing her to enter the kitchen, though everyone other than mom described those food as harassment:)

Shama's 'First cooked food' inspired me to cook this murungakkai masala and I am sending this to her event. Moreover this is my favorite side dish too.

Drumstick masala fry / murungakkai curry masala koottu


Drumstick - 3 (choose green, flexible and succulent ones)
salt - to taste (1/4 tsp)
curry leaf - 1 sprig
fennel - 1 tsp
Turmeric powder - a pinch
coriander powder - 3 tsp
Red chilly powder - 3/4 tsp
oil - 1 tsp
To grind:
Onion - 1/2
shredded coconut - 1/2 cup
cumin - 1/2 tsp

Cut the drumstick into 3 inch long pieces and slightly slit in one end.
Grind the items given to a coarse paste.
Heat oil in a wok.
Add fennel seed and let it get red. Now put the curry leaf.
Then add the drumstick pieces along with all the powders and masala paste.
Add salt , 1 cup water and cook covered till it becomes tender .
The curry should be like a very thick / dry gravy.
Drumstick masala is ready!

Serving suggestions:

Serve as side dish with sambar / rasam / curd rice .

How to eat drumstick ?
Gently scoop out the fleshy part with small spoon / fork and eat.
If in home feel free to scoop with hand and chew them gently without swallowing the outer skin. That is the real way to enjoy murungakkai:)
It is a very common dish in Tirunelveli and Tuticorin of TN , India.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Its Award time !!!

Hope it is raining awards now and I have received the kreative blogger award from many of you.
Thanks a ton to Suparna, Ramya, Anu, Sarah, Chithra, Ganga, Ann for sharing this award with me!!! This means a lot to me friends. I feel honored.

The rules for the Kreativ Blogger award is as follows:-
1.You must mention the person who has given you the award.
2.Copy the logo and place it on your blog.
3.Link to the person who has nominated you for the award.
4.Name 7 things about yourself that people might find interesting.
5.Nominate 7 other Kreativ Bloggers.
6.Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate.
7.Leave a comment on each of the blogs to let them know they have been nominated.

As I have already posted my MeMe in the previous post, I am going straight to the QA part.

1. What is your current obsession?
Blogging, physical fitness, wanna get us green card.

2. What are you wearing today?
T shirt and casual pant.

3. What’s for dinner?
Puttu , sugar, green gram chundal.

4. What’s the last thing you bought?

5. What are you listening to right now?
Tamil movie song from the website

6. What do you think about the person who tagged you?
They are so sweet.

7. If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you like it to be?
Near my hubby's office and to a church , so that I can walk every day to attend the mass.

8. What are your must-have pieces for summer?
Cotton dresses, Lots of water, curd rice + pickle ,uninterrupted power supply.

9. What do you do when you “have nothing to wear” (even though your closet’s packed)?
Will wear a blue jean and my favorite pink tops.

10. Which language do you want to learn?
Just like Suparna told...the language of animals and birds:)

11. Who do you want to meet right now?
Jesus,  dad, Dr.Abdul Kalam.

12. What is your favorite color?
Lilac, purple.

13. What is your favorite piece of clothing in your own closet?
My wedding saree.

14. What is your dream job?
Want to take care of orphaned children and elderly people.

15. What’s your favourite magazine?
Vikatan , Thina thanthi, some comics .

16. If you had $100 now, what would you spend it on?
Will buy some dress for my hubby.

17. Where do you love to go for vacation with your loved ones!!!
Jamaica, Alaska :) and..... the list is endless.

18. Who are your style icons?
Always changes. First it was my mother and now, I can't even recognize...

19. Describe your personal style?
Simple and love to merge with where I live.

20. What are you going to do after this?
Take bath:)

21. What are your favorite movies?
A lot.. You can see my profile for the answer. I like fairy tales:)

22. What inspires you?
Good people, knowledge.

23. Give us three styling tips that always work for you:
Smile, a good hair cut, trim body.

24. Coffee or tea?

25. What do you do when you are feeling low or terribly depressed?
It depends... sometimes a shopping for anything will make me feel good..he he.
Online shopping, sweets, a call to my brothers, talking with hubby will make me alright.

26. What is the meaning of your name?
My official name means ,'Goddess who relieves the pain of others' also it is the name of Lord Ganesha.

27. What are three cosmetic/makeup/perfume products that you can't live without?
Only three...huh...
moisturizer, perfume, comb and a lot....

28. Favorite Dessert/Sweet?
Rasgulla, Jangiri, dark Chocolate cake.

29. Favorite Season?

30.Whats your pet name?

31. What do you try to cook when you have cooking blues (When you feel real lazy to cook some thing)?
I will have some semi cooked food like noodles or any frozen food .

The rules are: Respond and rework – answer the questions on your own blog, replace one question that you dislike with a question of your own invention, and add one more question of your own. Then tag eight or ten other people.

I have been searching a long time to see if anyone has not been tagged. But I can't find one:(
So I would like to share this award and tag every one who makes a comment here. So please feel free to accept the awards.


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Announcing an event ... 'Side dish for chapathi'

Indians make many kinds of flat breads namely roti, chapathi (chapati), naan, paratha, parotta etc., using wheat flour. Spicy curries are served as side dish.

The side dish for those flat breads play a major role in the dinning table. If you cannot make a delicious side dish, then the whole lot of bread will remain untouched. It is always a trouble for me to choose a perfect match for my roties.

So I decided to host an event 'Side dish for chapathi' , that can help many .

I invite you all to bring out your amazing side dishes to make the event a great success.

Here are some rules:

1) Make any side dish that suits Roti / chapathi/ naan/ paratha/ parotta / any flat bread / fried flat bread (poori) and post the same in your blog . No need to describe the roti procedure. But you can send the whole spread too.

Link back to this announcement. Feel free to use the logo.
You can send in your entries from the archive also, provided they are re-posted for this event between Aug 5 and Sep 5, 2009.

2)Multiple entries are always welcome. All edible ingredients are accepted.
The choice is endless. I will be glad if the side dish is more authentic . You can post some famous side dish of your region / state too. But you can post any dish of your choice also.

3)you can send your entries to and the Subject as 'Side dish for chapathi' with the following details.

Your Name:
Recipe Name:
Recipe URL:
Attach a picture of the dish. Non bloggers can send their entries with the recipe details and picture if any to my email account.

Send it on or before September 15 , 2009.

Looking forward for your delectable dishes.....


Perfect Traditional Adai Dosai

Perfect traditional Adai dosai. To grind: Idly rice / any rice - 1cup Raw rice (Basmati) - 1 cup Thoor dhal - 1/4 cup Channa dhal - 1/2 cup ...