Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Oma podi (sev)

Omapodi (plain sev) is a savory snack of India. The flavor of these crispy snacks comes from a seed called omam / ajwain / bishop weed. This is one of my most favorite snack. I prepared this on a Friday evening to give as surprise gift for my hubby. In my house, preparing some snacks for weekends is a must, otherwise hubby will buy a pack of snack from any first grocery store we enter :)  Homemade snacks are not only fresh and delicious, they are definitely an inexpensive way to show our love for our family :)  This recipe is my mom's , which she got from our 'Tuticorin ladies club cook book'.
Omapodi (sev) ready to be served with evening tea.

various sev / omapodi pressing molds. I used the middle one for a Tamilnadu style omapodi. Very thin sev is used for chaats.

Ingredients: Flours and ajwain seed powdered.
The flavor of the oma podi comes from omam seeds (ajwain).
Before squeezing omapodi.
Oma podi gets crispy within a minute of frying.

Perfectly prepared oma podi should not absorb any oil.  Anyways stack them over kitchen towel.

Besan flour - 1 cup
rice flour - 1/4 cup
salt - 1 tsp (to taste)
ajwain (omam) - 1 tsp
oil - to deep fry

Put the flours in a wide mixing bowl.
Run the ajwain seed in mixie and powder it finely. Add some water and make a fine paste. Add the above said salt to this and dissolve it in 1/4 cup water. Extract the omam juice. Likewise extract another time.
Add this to the flours. Mix well , so that it gets a 'soft sticky chapati dough' (or cookie dough) consistency. Fit a required sized hole in the pressing mold (see photo above). Fill the omapodi / sev presser (idiyappa kuzhal).
In the same time , heat enough oil to deep fry in a frying pan.
As soon as the oil got hot, reduce the flame to medium heat and squeeze the omapodi directly to the oil in a circular form. Oma podi gets cooked in less than a minute. So flip once and cook both sides and take out still it is yellow in color, but completely crispy. This is the correct texture for the sev / oma podi. keep it over paper towels to drain oil.  Oma podi is ready.

Serving suggestions:
Serve as snack with evening tea.
Omapodi is one of the major ingredients in the popular Indian snack , the 'mixture' / namkeen.
The same sev, if prepared using a very fine pressing mold , is used as a garnishing item in chaat foods.

Perfectly prepared omapodi should not absorb oil.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Fruit custard

We tasted this fruit custard in a nearby Indian restaurant called Mirchi in a buffet and loved it very much. This simple dessert which could have taken only a few hours to prepare was seemed to be cherished by many on that day.
I have a passion for 'easy to cook recipes' as they come handy for a weekend lunch :) I prepared this dessert on a Friday evening and we shared and enjoyed it with our friends on that weekend. In this recipe I have used Brown & Polson brand vanilla custard powder along with assorted fruits. Try this and enjoy a very quick dessert !
Fruit custard

Fruit custard : ingredients

Ingredients: (makes 5 1/2 cup approx)
Any Custard powder - 3 tbsp
milk - 2 1/2 cup
condensed milk - 2 tbsp (optional)
powdered sugar  or sugar - 4 tbsp (to taste)
mixed fruits - 2 cup
(apple - 1/2 , pear - 1, banana - 1, seedless grapes - 10, pomegranate - 1/2 cup, dates - few)
cardamom powder - 3/4 tsp

Peel the apple, pears, pomegranate. Chop the apple, banana and pear into bite size cubes and keep aside. chop dates, grapes and keep aside.
Bring milk to boil and add the chopped apple, pear and cook till semi-soft. switch off. Then add chopped banana and cook in that heat.
Dissolve the custard powder in few tbsp of cold milk and add to the cooked fruits. Start heating and cook for 2-3 minutes or till the custard gets thickened.
Add required sugar, condensed milk , cardamom powder, chopped grapes, dates and pomegranate arils. Let cool to room temperature. Keep refrigerated for 2-3 hours or till chilled.
Fruit custard is ready!

Serving suggestions:
Serve chilled as dessert.

I am suggesting condensed milk, as we generally have fat-free milk only at home and this dessert tastes nice with a rich milk content.
Instead of fresh fruits, we can use canned fruits too, to save time.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Happy Easter ,

Easter cake I prepared (April 5 2015)
 This is the carrot cake I prepared for Easter 2015.  I just prepared this cake and enjoyed icing it. Also showed one of our neighborhood friend Amritha some of my icing techniques. I have used buttercream icing and readymade marshmallow birds and bunnies to decorate the cake. The nest is made of dry shredded coconut and eggs are from Hershey's chocolate eggs.
Please click the links to see the recipes: Carrot cake

Wishing all a very happy and blessed Holy Easter !