Classic Sakkarai Pongal| Traditional Sweet Pongal Recipe

Hola, guys and girls!

Warm wishes from our family to you for Pongal, Lohri, Makar Sankranti and Magh Bihu! I hope all of you are enjoying the festivities in your part of the world.

Today, I’m sharing with you all the recipe for Classic Sakkarai Pongal or sweet pongal made the traditional way. Made with rice and moong daal, jaggery, loads of dry fruits and ghee, this sweet pongal surely is a lovely treat for kids and adults alike. We make the Sakkarai Pongal in a pressure cooker, and not in a pan as is done traditionally, which ensures that it gets done in a jiffy and is still every bit just as delicious!

Check out our family recipe, just in on my photo blog!

 

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Menthiyakeerai Thokku| Fenugreek Greens Pickle

We, as a family, are big fans of fresh methi or fenugreek greens (‘menthiyakeerai’ in Tamil). We make it a point to consume them throughout the year, but the beautiful, big, fat, fresh bunches of these greens that are available right about now simply refuse to be ignored. In winters, I cannot resist picking up a fresh bunch of methi greens whenever I visit the vegetable vendor’s – I love adding them to just about anything I am cooking. We adore the slightly bitter taste of these leaves, the lovely flavour they impart to dishes. The most recent experiment in my kitchen with them was this Menthiyakeerai Thokku or a Fenugreek Greens Pickle, which turned out absolutely, finger-lickingly delicious.
 
Check out the recipe for Menthiyakeerai Thokku or Fenugreek Greens Pickle, just in on my blog!
 
 

Butterfly Pea Lemonade| Colour-Changing Magic Lemonade

Today’s recipe is a magic one! Christmas time, the season of Santa Claus and fairies and unicorns and secret gifts and all that, eh? 🙂
 
Now, this is a simple lemonade recipe at heart, but a magical, colour-changing one! When served, this drink is a pretty, deep blue. Squeeze some lemon into it, and it changes colour to a gorgeous purple! Let me hasten to add that this happens very naturally, without the help of any artificial colouring agents. The secret ingredient here is butterfly pea, a beautiful blue flower that grows in several Asian countries, including parts of India.
 
Head to my blog to read more about this wondrous butterfly pea flower, and for the recipe for the colour-changing lemonade!
 
 

Eggless Steamed Christmas Pudding

It’s almost Christmas! I absolutely have to share this Christmas-sy recipe with you – one for a Eggless Steamed Christmas Pudding!
 
As the name suggests, this is a delicious eggless dessert, a steamed one made in a pressure cooker, just perfect for the holiday season. It contains loads of fruit and nuts, cinnamon and cloves, like a Christmas fruit cake. Texture-wise, this is less dense than a fruit cake, a bit softer. Taste-wise, this is an almost-fruit cake.
 
If you are looking for something different, yet awesome to make for the Christmas season, do try this recipe out. The process is a bit time-consuming, but I wouldn’t call it laborious. The end result is totally, totally worth it, I can assure you of that.
 
Check out the recipe, just in on my blog!
 
 

Vazhaipazham Sakkarai Pongal| Banana Sweet Pongal

Vazhaipazham Sakkarai Pongal is a lovely twist to the regular sweet pongal that is commonly prepared in South India on auspicious occasions. Adding bananas elevates the taste of the sweet pongal up by several notches, and is a great way to get the goodness of the fruits in. This little touch makes the regular sakkarai pongal more exotic, makes it just perfect to serve guests on parties and other festive occasions.

This is a simple pressure-cooker recipe that can be put together in a matter of minutes. I’m sure it will be much loved by people of all age groups, including fussy kids. My daughter absolutely adores this!

Let’s now check out the recipe for this Vazhaipazham Sakkarai Pongal aka Banana Sweet Pongal, shall we?

Cocktail Idli Flowers| Beetroot, Carrot & Spinach Mini Idlis

Toddlerhood – the time when a child is between 1 and 3 years of age – is a precious phase. This is the time when kids are at their most notorious, driving their parents up the wall every so often – yet, this is when they are at their most vulnerable and adorable best. This is also when the time when they are exploring the world around them, food included. They are slowly learning to navigate the world, understand what they like and what they don’t and, as parents, it is our duty to help them do just that. In terms of food, toddlers should be exposed to a variety of finger foods – stuff they can easily hold in their little hands and eat on their own. This has a number of benefits, from improvement in gross and fine motor co-ordination and sensory integration to improved bonding with the parents and a deeper sense of ‘home’.

This week, the theme at Foodie Monday Blog Hop is just that – #ToddlerFingerFoods. For this theme, which is super close to my heart, I decided to prepare one of the bub’s favourite toddler snacks – pretty Cocktail Idli Flowers or naturally coloured mini idlis arranged into flowers.

Check out the recipe, just in on my photo blog!

Choclo Al Comino| Peruvian Style Corn With Cumin & Lemon

Choclo Al Comino, the recipe that I present to you today comes all the way from the fantastical land of Peru!
 
Peru, also called The Republic of Peru – home to the Incas, Machu Picchu and the Amazonian rainforest – is a place that I am sure has every traveller charmed. The country boasts of a rich culinary legacy as well, influenced by its indigenous people as well as the various immigrants who came to it in the later years.
 
Choclo Al Comino is the Peruvian way of eating corn, sauteed in butter, seasoned with salt and pepper, with a dash of cumin and lemon. It is so simple to make, yet a delight to tuck into, especially when served straight off the pan. This is now our family’s new favourite way of eating corn, too!
 
Check out the recipe for Choclo Al Comino or Peruvian-style corn with cumin and lemon, just in on my blog!

Mor Keerai| Keerai Mor Kootu

The first of the winter greens have started appearing in the markets, here in Bangalore. It is a soothing sight to see those lush, fresh greens piled up at the vegetable vendor’s. I love playing with leafy greens any day, and winter provides me just the perfect opportunity to cook with a variety of them. Spinach or palak is one of the most commonly used greens in India, and I present to you today a beautiful way to use them. Say hello to a traditional Tamilnadu recipe – Mor Keerai or Keerai Mor Kootu, using spinach.

Here, spinach is cooked and mixed with a freshly ground spice paste (that includes coconut and a few other ingredients), to which whisked curd is added later.

Check out my family recipe for Mor Keerai or Keerai Mor Kootu, just in on my blog!

Masala Dosa Recipe| How To Make Masala Dosa

I would have been around 12 years of age when my first real spark of interest in cooking ignited. I don’t remember precisely which grade I was studying in then, but I do remember the particular day when it happened very, very clearly. Masala Dosa was the first-ever recipe I made on my own. Making Masala Dosa isn’t a big deal for me today, but back then, it was. It was a huge thing, an achievement!

The Foodie Monday Blog Hop group that I am part of has ‘#MyBeginnerRecipe’ as the theme this week, wherein we are required to share the recipe for the very first dish we cooked on our own. Head over to my blog post to read my beginner cooking tale, and my beginner Masala Dosa recipe!

Vatana Ni Kachori Chaat| Making Chaat From Matar Kachori

Winter is, slowly but surely, settling in in Bangalore. And one of the things that is synonymous with winter, for me, is the piping hot, home-made lilva kachoris that I grew up eating in Ahmedabad. With a gorgeous pigeon pea (fresh tuver) and/or fresh green peas (vatana), these kachoris had the power to brighten up a gloomy winter’s day – they still hold the same magic for me.

When the Foodie Monday Blog Hop team decided upon #ChaatsForDiwali as the theme for this week, I instantly knew that I had to make use of the fresh green peas that have begun to appear in the markets of Bangalore. The making of green pea kachoris aka Vatana Ni Kachori, and subsequently converting them into a chaat, came naturally.

So, here’s presenting to you Vatana Ni Kachori Chaat or Matar Kachori Chaat! Deep-fried, sinful, chatpata gorgeousness – that is this chaat for you. This beauty surely deserves to find pride of place in your Diwali party. Try it out, and I’m sure you will fall in love with it too!

Check out the recipe, just in on my photo blog!