Friday, March 16, 2012

Collard greens stir fry

From the start of March month, we can see a whole green look in USA because of St.Patrick day (Mar, 17). Its a tradition to wear a lucky green T-shirt or a shamrock logo for this festival. I can see everything green here in TV and streets ranging from T-Shirts, shamrocks, beads, hats, scarfs, face painting, hair colors, cakes, green thinking, green ads etc:) While we both are also getting green, I wanted my blog to have a green dish in its menu card too:) Here goes my collard greens stir fry with peanuts.

Happy St.Patrick day!

collard greens - 15 leaves.

To temper:
Mustard - 1/2 tsp
onion - 2 tbsp
garlic - 3 cloves
sesame / coconut oil - 1 tbsp

To grind:
grated coconut - 2 tbsp
ground nut - 20 numbers
rice - 1 tsp
fennel seed - 1/2 tsp
dry red chilly - 2

Rinse the collard greens and remove the mid stem. Chop finely.

Dry roast the peanut and remove the skin by rubbing. Crush it to very-coarse pieces (using a mixie or chopper).
Dry roast the rice, fennel seed, red chilly, till rice puffs. Coarsely powder it.
Keep the powders aside.

Heat oil and add mustard seeds. Add the chopped onion, garlic and fry for few seconds. Then put the chopped greens and cook covered in low heat along with a few tbsp of water. After it gets cooked add required salt. Before switching off put the prepared powders, coconut and stir in high heat for a minute.

Collard green peanut stir fry is ready!

Serving suggestion:
Serve as side dish with roti or chapati or rice.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Kara Paniyaram

Kara paniyaram - Spicy puff pancake.

This is a popular tiffin / snack / breakfast in chettinadu region of Tamilnadu. The batter is similar to idly batter with slight variation in proportion. The urad dhal should be much lesser for the paniyaram, so that the paniyaram comes off the hole easily.

Idly rice (parboiled rice / puzhungal arisi) - 1 cup
black gram lentil (ulunthu paruppu) - 2 tbsp
channa dhal (kadala paruppu) - 1 tbsp
salt - to taste ( 1tsp)
baking soda - 1/8 tsp
ghee /butter/  sesame oil - as per need

To temper:
mustard seed - 1/2 tsp
urad dhal - 1 tsp
sesame oil - 1 tsp
onion - 1/4 (small)
green chilly - 2
cilantro - few leaves.
asafoetida (hing) - a pinch

Rinse and soak the rice, urad dhal and channa dhal together for 6 hours.
Grind it to a fine to medium coarse batter with very little water.
The batter should be thick like a pancake batter / idly batter.
Mix salt and keep it to ferment overnight (cold weather) or 6 hours (in hotter weather).
The batter will ferment well only if the room temperature is above 85 deg F. Otherwise maintain the temperature using an oven.

10 minutes before starting to prepare the paniyaram, add the baking soda and mix well.
In the mean time prepare the tempering.

Heat 1 tsp oil in a small wok and add mustard seeds. Once they start splutter, add the urad dhal, asafoetida and finely chopped onion, cilantro, curry leaf, chilly and let it get slightly tender. Add it to the batter and mix well.

Now heat a paniyaram pan and brush some oil in all the holes. Then add 1 tsp sesame oil / butter in each hole. Reduce the flame to minimum and pour the batter to halfway in each hole. Click to see the picture. Cook covered or in open. (I prefer putting a lid to ensure uniform cooking). We can see the paniyaram getting cooked. Flip using a skewer or fork. Take out once done.

Serving suggestion:
Makes almost 21 paniyaram .
Serve with coconut chutney.


Do everything in low heat. It may take a little while but that is the only way to get whole fluffy paniyaram.
Non stick pans work the best. But I have used a pan similar to traditional thick paniyaram pan.
For the first round it may require more oil to fry, but it will take very lesser in the following.

Vazhaikkai Poriyal (Plantain stir fry)

This vazhaikai poriyal was a staple in our house as we had some (lot) of banana trees in our backyard. I have seen amma running there to pic...