Aaloo Tikki

A quick evening snack item prepared with potatoes and green peas. There are few variations of this dish, and I love to keep the preparation simple.

Preparation Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:
1. Potato - 2 medium sized
2. Green Peas - 1/2 cup
3. Red chilli powder - 1 tablespoon
4. Salt - to taste
5. Garam Masala - 1 teaspoon
6. Corn Flour - 2 tablespoon
7. Oil to cook

Preparation:
1. Boil the green peas in required amount of water.
2. Grate the potatoes to thin strings.
3. Mix the potatoes and peas with the other ingredients (except oil) and rest for 10 minutes.
4. Make small patties with the mixture.
5. Heat a shallow pan and place the patty in it and start cooking. Add required amount of oil around the patty.
6. Turn the patty and cook both the sides until it turns golden brown.

Serve it hot as a snack accompanying tea/coffee

Garlic Rasam

This is a simple variety of rasam with garlic. Since we dont use cooked dhal in this preparation, this consumes lesser time to prepare.


Preparation Time: 20 minutes


Ingredients:
1. Tomato - 2 
2. Tamarind juice - 2 tablespoon
3. Oil - 2 tablespoon
4. Garlic - 6
5. Curry leaves & coriander leaves for garnishing
6. Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
7. Red chillies - 2


To make paste:
1. Garlic - 5 pods
2. Red chillies - 3
3. Coriander seeds - 1 tablespoon
4. Toor dhal - 1 tablespoon
5. Methi seeds - 1 teaspoon
6. Curry leaves - 4 to 5
7. Asafoetida - a pinch




Preparation:


1. Dry roast all ingredients given for paste, cool them and make a wet paste.
2. Chop the tomatoes to fine pieces and cook in 2 cups of water along with 6 pods of garlic.
3. When tomatoes are almost cooked, add tamarind juice, the ground paste and salt. Bring it to boil for 5 to 7 minutes and bring it off the stove.
4. Season the rasam with mustard seeds, red chillies and asafoetida in 2 tablespoon of oil.
5. Garnish with curry leaves and coriander leaves.


Serve it with hot white rice.

Kathirikai MochaiKottai Kuzhambu (Brinjal and Val bean Gravy)

This is a gravy recipe with Brinjal and white Val bean (mochai) in tamarind juice and coconut paste. Freshly prepared coconut paste adds a rich flavor to this dish. 

Preparation Time: 1 hour


Ingredients:
1. Brinjal - 3
2. White dried Mochai - 1/2 cup
3. Onion - 2 medium
3. Tomato - 1 medium
4. Tamarind juice - extracted from small lemon sized tamarind.
5. Sambhar Powder - 2 tablespoon (you can vary this per your spice level)
6. Salt to taste
7. Oil - 3 tablespoon
8. Mustard seeds - 2 teaspoon
9. Methi seeds - 1/2 tablespoon
10. Vadagam - 1 tablespoon
11. Curry leaves - 5 to 6
12. Garlic - 10- 15 pods


To make paste:
1. Coconut - 1/2 cup
2. Poppy seeds - 2 teaspoon




Preparation:
1. Soak mochai in water overnight and boil them in the cooker for 2 - 3 whistles.
2. Cut the stem of brinjal and slit it into 4 to 5 pieces, do not cut them separately. Chop onions into fine vertical pieces and tomatoes into fine pieces.
3. Make a paste with coconut and poppy seeds.
4. Heat oil in a pan, and when hot add mustard seeds, vadagam and methi seeds.
5. Add onions and fry until it turns transparent. Add garlic, tomatoes and curry leaves and fry well for 3 to 4 minutes.
6. Add the brinjal, boiled mochai, sambhar powder, salt and mix it well and cook for another 5 minutes.
7. Now add the tamarind juice bring it to boil and cok until the raw smell of tamarind goes off. This would take atleast 15 to 20 minues.
8. Add the ground paste of coconut to the boiling mixture. Cook for another 5 to 7 minutes.


Spicy, yummy kuzhambu is ready to serve. This can be served with rice/idly or dosas.


Tips:
1. You can roast the beans a little before cooking. This will give an additional flavor.

Colocasia roast (சேப்பங்கிழங்கு வறுவல்)

Colocasia roast had been the most favoirte dish for me and my two little cousin sisters since our childhood.Whenever I make or eat this dish, it reminds me of my lovely sister who is crazy about this. She just loves eating the roast just as soon as it is taken from the pan and makes it vanish in seconds :) I found frozen Colocasia in the Indian grocery store here, after so many months and madeup my mind to make the roast and surprise my husband.

Preparation Time: 40 minutes

Ingredients:
1. Colocasia - 200 gms
2. Sambhar powder - 2 tablespoon
3. Salt- to taste
4. Rice flour - 2 tablespoon
5. Oil - to fry





Preparation:
1. Cook the colocascia in water with skin.
2. Once it is cooked completely, cool and peel the skin and cut into small round pieces with thickness of 1-2 cms.
3. Add sambhar powder, salt and rice flour to the cut pieces and mix it well. Add little water to blend it nicely with the colocasia. 
4. Set this aside for 20 to 30 minutes.
5. Heat oil in a deep fry pan. When the oil is hot, add 10- 12 pieces at a time and deep fry it.
6. Turn both sdes until it is roasted to a golden brown colour.

Crispy and hot roast is ready to eat.

Tips:
1. If you use frozen colocasia, since it comes without the skin, instead of boiling them in water, steam boil it.
2. If you dont have sambhar powder, use 1 tablespoon of red chilly powder and 2 tablespoons of coriander powder.

Tomato Thokku (with onions)

This is one of my most favorite dishes that can be made with very simple ingredients. This dish consumes a littler more time for preparation but the wait is really worthy for this delicious dish. By using 6 to 7 tomatoes we would get 1/2 of the initial volume of ingredients as we cook it for a longer time. You can prepare this dish in a large quantity and refrigerate it and use for 3 to 4 days.

Preparation Time: 1 hour
Ingredients:
1. Onion - 3 finely chopped
2. Tomato - 7 finely chopped
3. Garlic - 15
4. Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
5. Urud dhal - 2 teaspoon
6. Curry leaves - 6
7. Asafoetida - a pinch
8. Oil -  6 to 7 tablespoon
9. Sambhar powder - 2 tablespoon
10. Salt - to taste

Preparation:
1. Chop Onions and tomatoes into fine pieces. Peel the skin of garlic.
2. Heat oil in a pan, and when hot, add mustard seeds.
3. When it splutters, add urud dhal, asafoetida and fry until it turns golden brown.
4. Now add the onions, tomatoes, garlic and curry leaves and cook.
5. Add the sambhar powder and salt and mix well.
6. Now start cooking the mixture in a medium flame and stirring every 7 to 8 minutes until the tomatoes are completely smashed and cooked.
7. When the oil starts separating and the tomatoes and onions are perfectly cooked, thokku is ready to serve.
8. Garinsh with coriander leaves.

This mouth watery dish is a very good combination of idly/dosa/rotis/rice. This goes well with curd rice/lemon rice.

Tips:
1. Tomato rice can be made by mixing this tomato mixture with rice and serve with any curry.

Vaangi Bath (Brinjal Rice)

Brinjal rice often referred as Vaangi Bath is a very delicious rice variety made of brinjal and a spicy fresh powder. Vaangi bath ready mix powder is available these days in the grocery stores and makes the preparation very simple. But I prefer to make my own fresh powder to have the fresh taste.


Preparation Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:
1. Rice - 2 cups
2. Brinjal - 5
3. Onion - 1 medium sized
4. Slt - to taste
5. Oil - 1 tablespoon
6. Ghee - 2 tablespoon
7. Cashews - 10 to 15
8. Coriander leaves - for garnishing
9. Mustard seeds - 2 teaspoon

For Powder:
1. Urud dhal -1 tablespoon
2. Channa dhal - 2 tablespoon
3. Red chillies - 4
4. Coriander Seeds - 1 tablespoon
5. Fenugreek seeds - 1 teaspoon
6. Cloves - 2
7. Cinnamon - 1 small stick

Preparation:
1. Cook the rice with required water. Do not over cook the rice. Ensure that the rice grains are separate and cool it.
2. Finely chop the onion and brinjal into lengthy pieces.
3. Dry roast the ingredients given for powder and grind it into a coarse powder.
4. Heat oil in a pan and when hot add mustard seeds, when it splutters add onions and fry until it turns transparent.
5. Now add the brinjals and salt and cook for next 5 minutes.
6. Add the powder and little water and cook the mixture by closing the lid in a medium flame for next 10 minutes.
7. The brinjal would now be perfectly cooked and the water is completely drained.
8. Heat 2 tables of ghee in a separate pan and fry the cashews until it turns golden brown.
9. Add the brinjal mixture and cashews to the rice and mix it well without breaking the rice.
10. Garinsh with copped coriander leaves.
Hot and spicy vaangi bath is ready to serve. You can serve this with Raitha or appalam/papads.


Tips:
1. Use Basmathi rice to have a rich flavor.
2. You can also use 2 - 3 spoons of tamarind juice to add a sour taste to the rice.

Plantain Curry (வாழைக்காய் கறி)

There are many simple dishes that can be made with Plantain. Of course plantain bhajji is a very famous dish in Tamilnadu. This recipe is a spicy curry made with very minimum number of ingredients. It is very rare to get good plantain in my city. So after a long time when i happened to find fresh Plantain in Wal-mart, i was so excited to make this preparation and it came out yummy...

Preparation Time: 40 mins

Ingredients:
1. Raw Plantain - 2
3. Onion - 2
3. Garlic - 7 to 8 pods
4. Red chilly powder - 1 tablespoon
5. Coriander powder - 2 tablespoon
6. Salt - to taste
7. Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
8. Urud dhal - 1/2 tablespoon
9. Oil - 3 tablespoon
10. Curry leaves - 4 to 5
11. Coriander leaves for garnishing

Preparation:
1. Peel the skin of plantain and chop into medium sized cubes. Alternatively you can chop the plantains in a round shape.
2. Finely chop the onions and peel the skin of the garlic and crush it coarsely.
3. Heat oil in pan and when hot add mustard seeds and when it splutters add urud dhal and fry.
4. Add onions, curry leaves and garlic and fry until onions become golden brown.
5. Add plantain, red chilly powder, coriander powder and salt and mix it well.
6. Now add around 100 ml of water to the mixture and cook the plantain in a medium flame for another 15 to 20 minutes by stirring occasionally. Cover with a lid, to cook the plantain well.
7. When the water drains and plantain cooks completely, switch off the stove and garnish with coriander leaves.

Hot and spicy plantain curry is ready to serve. This is a very good combination with any rice, especially Rasam or Curd rice.

Tips:
1. If you do not like garlic, you can avoid. This is used to enrich the flavor of the dish.

Brinjal Gothsu

This is a very famous dish in Chidambaram in TamilNadu. Chidambaram has a very famous Natarajar temple and this dish is even known to be provided as offering to Lord Nataraj. This dish is made with brinjal and tamarind juice.

Preparation Time: 45 mins

Ingredients:
1. Brinjal - 6
2. Onion - 2 medium size
3. Tamarind juice - 300 ml  (you can make the juice from either a tamarind of small lemon size or from 2 spoons of tamarind paste).
4. Red chillies - 2
5. Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
6. Urud dhal - 2 teaspoon
7. Asafoetida - a pinch
8. Curry leaves - 4
9. Oil - 2 tablespoon
10. Salt - to taste
11. Coriander leaves - to garnish

To make Powder:
1. Channa dhal - 3 tablespoon
2. Red chillies - 4 (vary it according to your spice level)
3. Coriander seeds - 1 tablespoon
4. Methi seeds - 1 teaspoon

Preparation:
1. Chop brinjal into fine pieces and onions lengthwise.
2. Dry roas all ingredients given for powdering and make a coarse powder.
3. Heat oil in pan and when hot add mustard seeds.
4. When it splutters, add urud dhal, red chillies and asafoetida and fry until it turns golden brown.
5. Add the chopped onions and curry leaves and cook until onions turn transparent.
6. Now add the brinjals and salt and mix well for next 5 minutes
7. Add the tamarind juice and bring it to boil in a medium flame.
8. When it comes to boil, add the powder and keep it in a low flame and cook for another 15 minutes.

Garnish it with coriander leaves and tasty, yummy brinjal gothsu is ready to serve. This is a very good combination for Idly and Ven Pongal.

PS:
1. Based on the sourness of the tamarind you use, make sure to adjust the quantity.
2. You can also add a cup of cooked moong dhal to have an additional taste.