24 Dec 2017

Sprinkles Number Cake

This is an easy cake that you can make at home for a birthday party. It was my son's 5th birthday and this is the cake I made for the second birthday party. I made a Peppa Pig Cake for the first party and I chose to do this simple cake for the second party.

If you don't want to do an elaborate frosting, you can choose to do this simple design. Every child will love sprinkles and this easy method makes an ordinary cake look fantastic! My son loved to see the sprinkles on his cake!


Sprinkles Number Cake


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23 Dec 2017

Poosanikai Sambar

Sambar is a stew made with lentils, vegetables and tamarind juice. It is a staple of South India and we make some variety of sambar atleast twice a week. I love to make sambar with poosanikai. It makes it so delicious! I mostly use white pumpkin for my sambar.

Poosanikai is also called as Winter Melon/Ash Gourd and White Pumpkin. It is considered as a natural coolant to the body and is rich in anti oxidants and it can also reduce cholesterol. It also has anti-inflammatory properties and heals stomach ulcers. 


Poosanikai Sambar

You can add the poosanikai by itself or you can add it along with some other veggies and make the sambar.
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21 Dec 2017

Cabbage Egg Scramble

Cabbage egg scramble is an easy and simple dish that my husband enjoys having for breakfast. It is made just like the usual egg scramble but with the added goodness of cabbage. Cabbage is one of the vegetables that is low in calories and is an excellent source of Vitamin K and Vitamin C. Paired with protein rich eggs, this makes a very healthy breakfast. You can add this as fill ins in sandwiches too.


Cabbage Egg Scramble


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20 Dec 2017

White Chocolate Fudge

Growing up, I used to love the milky bar chocolate and now, I still love white chocolate. My family does not like the taste of white chocolate so I almost never make any desserts with white chocolate. They like this dark chocolate fudge which I make often.


White Chocolate Fudge

I made this white chocolate fudge to finish up some of the left over white chocolate from making this white chocolate mango mousse cake. Ans as always I simply loved this fudge! 
I added some dark chocolate chips to the fudge, you can add some chopped walnuts and it will taste really good!


White Chocolate Fudge

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19 Dec 2017

Peppa Pig Cake

My children love Peppa Pig! Since they love Peppa so much, they love anything that is related to the show! I usually make these Peppa Pig chocolates for them and they love it!  

Peppa Pig Cake

I have always wanted to make a Peppa Pig cake for their birthdays. This year for my son's 5th birthday, I made a simple and easy Peppa in muddy puddles cake. 

I used the Peppa toys on the cake, if you know to use fondant then you can make the characters in fondant and add it to the cake.


Peppa Pig Cake


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5 Dec 2017

Vegetable Fried Rice

Fried rice is a Chinese recipe but with an Indian twist to it. This is one of the most favorite rice recipes that my children enjoy. Whenever we go out to eat, this is the rice my daughter always orders. Since they like it so much, I make different version of fried rice at home and it is easy to pack for lunch boxes too. 


Veg Fried Rice


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4 Dec 2017

Vendakkai Varuval

Vendakkai or lady's finger is veggie that my husband loves. Vendakkai is a healthy veggie rich in calcium, vitamins and folic acid. I never used to buy this veggie earlier because of its's slimy nature but now I've learnt to cook this without any sticky problems! I will share tips on how to avoid the sticky nature of lady's finger later on. 

This varuval is very tasty! We don't add any onion to it and all the masalas together give it a deep spicy taste that we love! I don't add curd or besan to make it crisp or avoid stickiness, it takes very less time to cook too and gets done quickly. 


Vendakkai Varuval


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23 Nov 2017

Lamingtons

Lamingtons are nothing but square vanilla sponge cake dipped in chocolate and rolled in dessicated coconut. These lamingtons originated in Australia. It is believed to be named after Lord Lamington who was the Governor of Queensland. 


Lamingtons

I have always wanted to make a lamington cake and I finally made it and it tasted absolutely delicious! Everybody who had it simply fell in love with the cake! The vanilla cake, chocolate frosting and the coconut was just perfect! You've got to taste it to believe how good this is!! My next agenda is to make Pink Lamingtons!! 


Lamingtons

Today marks the 4th anniversary of my blog! What better way to celebrate than with my favorite lamingtons! I thank God for helping me through and through and for blessing this blog and making it a blessing to many! A big thank you to all who read the blog and leave comments!

Here's what I posted on my previous blog anniversaries!
1st blog anniversary   - How to make a Doll Cake.
2nd blog anniversary - Strawberry Chocolate Chip Loaf.
3rd blog anniversary  - Neapolitan Cake.


Lamingtons

You can choose any vanilla cake for this recipe. Make sure you bake it in a square pan. I made these lamingtons with this Best Butter Cake recipe. Or you can chose from one of these vanilla cake recipes. You can make these lamingtons with an egg free vanilla cake as well. You can also fill this cake with cream or jam before covering it with chocolate.


Lamingtons


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22 Nov 2017

Mosambi Juice Recipe | Sweet Lime Juice

This is the most common juice I make for my husband at home. Out of all the juice recipes I have posted, this is his most favorite and I make it quite often. It is simple and easy to make, tastes great and it has a lot of health benefits. It is loaded with Vitamin C and helps increase immunity, promotes bone health, improves eye sight and many more!
When selecting the fruit, do not pick green ones with thick skin, choose the ones that are yellowish with thin skin, ripe but without any dark spots. 


Sweet Lime Juice


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21 Nov 2017

20 Nov 2017

Triple Chocolate Banana Bread

Chocolate and banana is a wonderful combination and one of my favorites and I can finish up the left over bananas and the enjoy the chocolate too! This cake is even better as it has double the amount of chocolate! I made this for our prayer group and it disappeared quickly!



Triple Chocolate Banana Bread

The cake tastes amazing, so rich, moist and chocolaty! You can't taste the banana as we are adding too much of chocolate, the chocolate masks the taste of the banana. If you like chocolate then you will love this cake.


Triple Chocolate Banana Bread


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19 Nov 2017

18 Nov 2017

Bhindi Rice | Okra Rice

My son has started full day school and he likes to take only variety rice in his lunch box. He does not like taking sambar, rasam. So I make different kinds of pulao, fried rice often. This time I decided to make this okra rice as I wanted to include okra in my kids diet.


Vendakka Sadam

Okra is a healthy veggie, rich in vitamins, folic acid and calcium. It is low in calories and high in dietary fibre. Growing up, I was not very fond of okra but now it's one of my top favorite veggie!

Okra is called as Bhindi in Hindi and Vendakkai in Tamil. Many people don't cook okra due to it's sticky nature but if done properly, there will be no stickiness and it's a breeze to cook okra. 


Vendakka Sadam


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17 Nov 2017

Paneer Baby Corn Kurma

Paneer and baby corn kurma is a tasty dish that you can have as a side dish for pulao or roti. It's easy to make and tastes delicious. Both paneer and baby corn is something that all kids love and this dish will also be relished by kids.
I usually make any kind of kurma recipes to go as a side dish for pulao

Paneer Baby Corn Kurma


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16 Nov 2017

Mixed Vegetable Pulao

I have already posted one version of mixed veg pulao where I have used the microwave to partially cook the veggies and then used an electric rice cooker to cook the pulao. You can check that recipe here. This recipe is an easy one pot recipe that is pretty simple to put together. 

Mixed Veg Pulao


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15 Nov 2017

Egg Gravy

This is a tasty and rich egg gravy which goes very well with pulao or with roti. It's easy and simple to make and loved by kids too! I made this gravy with a puree of onion and tomato as we were having some kids over for lunch. If you prefer to have a little texture in your gravy then you can finely chop the onions and tomatoes and add it in.


Egg Gravy


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14 Nov 2017

Vendakkai Sambar

Sambar is a staple of South India, we make sambar every week and sometimes many times a week! I usually make my sambar with toor dal, you can add some split moong dal as well. Sambar can be made with multiple veggies or with a single vegetable. This time I made it with okra. 


Vendakkai Sambar

Vendakkai sambar tastes really good, the only thing to note is to make sure the vendakkai does not become sticky. To avoid the stickiness, cut the okra into 1 inch pieces and saute the okra separately before adding it to the sambar. By cooking it this way, you can make a delicious non sticky okra sambar.


Vendakkai Sambar


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13 Nov 2017

Fudgy Eggless Brownies

I love fudgy chewy chocolaty brownies and I have plenty of recipes of such kind of brownies with eggs. I have posted 2 eggless brownies so far and both are fudgy and chocolaty, just the way I like it! This time I reworked my eggless brownie recipe and ended up with this super fudgy egg free brownie! I loved it! And most importantly my husband who is not fond of chocolates, loved it too!


Eggless Brownies

The most important thing with baking brownies, is when to switch off!! Brownies should never be baked through and through like cakes. It should always be removed when there are a few crumbs sticking to the skewer. I usually bake my brownies only for 25 minutes but for this brownie I had to bake for about 35 minutes. The only thing I would say about this recipe is, keep an eye on the baking time. Do not over bake.
Here are my other two eggfree brownies - eggless brownies, eggless brownie muffins.


Eggless Brownies


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Muttai Idli Upma

My husband made this dish one night, apparently he had seen this recipe in YouTube and he wanted to make it. I have only made plain idli upma, this seemed like a wonderful idea! You can have this as a breakfast or even as a snack. He made this with left over idlis from the morning. 


Mutta Idli Upma


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Kondakadalai Kuzhambu

My mum makes this kondakadalai kuzhambu and Mochai kottai kuzhambu very often. Rich in fibre and protein, chickpeas are very healthy. There are also many varieties of chickpeas but we mostly use these white ones and the brown/black ones. Since these are dry beans we need to soak them overnight and then cook it. These chickpeas are also called as garbanzo beans in English and Chana in Hindi. 


Kondakadalai Kuzhambu


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10 Nov 2017

9 Nov 2017

OPOS Tomato Coriander Thokku | Tomato Coriander Chutney

OPOS stands for One Pot One Shot, it's a new cooking technique pioneered by Mr. Ramakrishnan (founder of Pizza Republic and many other food joints in Chennai). It is the simplest form of cooking where all the cooking is done in One Pot and in One Shot, meaning there is no sauteing and no multiple steps involved. OPOS invloves layering the food methodically and cooking at high heat for a short time. There are many advantages of OPOSing but my favorite are the nutrition of the food remains intact and the taste is awesome.


OPOS Tomato Coriander Thokku

For more recipes and info, do check OPOS chef on YouTube.

This recipe was shared by one of the members of the OPOS facebook group - United by Food, unfortunately I forgot her name. I will update her name when I find it! The taste and flavor of this chutney is extraordinary! We simply love this and I make this often. You can make the same without the coriander leaves too but I like to add atleast a little bit of coriander as the taste is lovely with it.


OPOS Tomato Coriander Thokku


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8 Nov 2017

Sathumaavu Muttai Dosai

Sathumaavu is a powder made with lots of nuts and grains for young children. You can read all about it in this post on homemade sathumaavu powder.

I normally make sathumaavu kanji for them but they are not fond of eating it, I have to force feed the kanji. So I try to include the powder in other ways too. I make this sathumaavu dosa, which works out very well, I also make this egg dosa for my husband. This makes the breakfast very filling and healthy.


Sathumaavu Muttai Dosai


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6 Nov 2017

4 Nov 2017

How to thaw Fish quickly

It takes a long time to thaw fish taken from deep freeze. This method works well for me, it takes only about 15-20 minutes to thaw the fish as opposed to many hours of thawing. 

How to thaw Fish quickly


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Sathumaavu Kanji

Sathumaavu Kanji/porridge is an extremely healthy porridge you can make for your babies and children. The Sathumaavu powder is made with many healthy grains, millets, nuts, pulses which makes it very nutritional for young children. Even adults can have this porridge for breakfast, it makes a very filling breakfast. 
You can use homemade sathumaavu powder or store bought powder. I usually use my homemade sathumaavu powder but occasionally I buy from the store until my homemade powder gets ready. 
The amount of milk used depends on the consistency of the porridge you prefer so you can arrive at it only after some trial and error. I like a thick consistency hence use about 1/2 cup of milk. For a thinner consistency you will require more milk.


Sathumaavu Kanji


To watch this video in Tamil


To watch this video in English


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25 Oct 2017

Palak Moong Dal Khichidi with millets

I make moong dal khichidi often for dinner. Sometimes I make it with rice and sometimes with millets. This time I added some palak to my miller moong dal khichidi. As always a khichidi tastes fantastic and the millets and spinach makes it more healthy.


Palak Moong Dal Khichi with Millets


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24 Oct 2017

How to make Sathumaavu | Homemade Sathumaavu Powder

Sathumaavu powder is quite famous in South India. Almost all mother's give this for their babies,toddlers and young children. Even adults can have this for breakfast and it makes a very healthy, filling meal.

Sathumaavu (which literally means Health Powder) is made with different kinds of grains, millers, nuts which makes it rich in protein and iron. You can give this for babies after 1 year. 


Homemade Sathumaavu Powder


Sprouted sathumaavu is more nutritious than the powder made without sprouting as sprouting enhances the nutritional value of the grains and also makes it easier to digest and absorb. 

We do get ready made packs of sathumaavu but I prefer making at home since it's more hygienic and you can decide what you want to add and what you want to omit. It took me more than a week to get this done so I generally make a large batch which will remain for about 3-4 months.


Homemade Sathumaavu Powder


HOMEMADE SATHUMAAVU
Preparation time 7 days | Cooking time 15 mins | Makes 2 kg

Ingredients
  • Ragi - 200 gms
  • Brown Rice - 200 gms
  • Jowar (Vellai cholam/sorghum) - 200 gms
  • Black gram (karupu ulundu) - 200 gms
  • Green gram - 200 gms
  • Corn (makka cholam) - 100 gms
  • Roasted gram (pottu kadalai) - 200 gms
  • Wheat - 200 gms
  • Sago (javarisi) - 200 gms
  • Peanuts - 200 gms
  • Chickpeas (kala chana) - 200 gms
  • Red rice - 100 gms
  • Cashew - 200 gms
  • Almonds - 200 gms
  • Pista - 200 gms
  • Horse gram (kollu) - 100 gms
  • Black eyed peas (karamani) - 100 gms
  • Barley - 100 gms
  • Kambu (pearl millet) - 100 gms
  • Ajwain (omam) - 10 gms
  • Soya beans - 50 gms
  • Cardamom - 15 gms 
  • Dry ginger (sukku) - 10 gms
Ingredients in picture



























Method
1. All the ingredients cannot be sprouted. Only a few can be sprouted. Here is a list of grains that can be sprouted.
  1. Ragi 
  2. Green gram
  3. Black gram
  4. Horse gram
  5. Wheat
  6. Kambu
  7. Jowar
  8. Chickpeas
2. Wash these 8 grains well in water until the water runs clear. 
Sathumaavu

3. Soak them in water for 12 hours or over night. 
4. Drain the water and tie each grain in a muslin cloth or kitchen towel. I used veshti thunni.

5. Tie them well and hang it under chairs or in your balcony or keep it in a strainer until the excess water drips off. Make sure you tie them securely. Or simply just squeeze out all the excess water. 
6. Then keep it all in a plate. You can also keep these in separate hot boxes (hot packs) until it sprouts. 



Note - Some grains sprout very fast and some take a lot of time. For eg: green gram, black gram sprouts very quickly. Whereas wheat and black chana takes a long time to sprout. You can choose to sprout wheat and chana first and then sprout the rest a day after.

Sprouted Ingredients




sprouted kambu





7. Once all the grains are sprouted, transfer it to plates and sun dry for 2 days. I dried for 4 days. If it's a hot summer day then it's enough to dry for 2 days. During winter, I leave it out in the sun much longer.


Sathumaavu

Sathumaavu

Note - it is very essential that there is no trace of moisture in the grains. If the grains are moist and humid that increases the risk of bacteria formation. Drying in sun and roasting the grains well and cooking the powder well before consumption nullifies this risk.

8. After sun drying, roast each ingredient for 3 minutes. Do not burn.


9. Also dry roast all the other ingredients for 3 mins.


10. Transfer to a vessel and let it cool down. Do not close immediately.


11. Once the ingredients have cooled down close the vessel and give it in a power mill to grind to a fine powder.


12. Once it's ground, again don't close the vessel immediately. Let it come to room temperature, then close and store.


Homemade Sathumaavu Powder

Storage
Store in airtight boxes in a dry place. It will stay good for 3 months. I put the sathumaavu in boxes and keep in fridge. I take what I need for a week and keep it out.

Notes
1. You can adjust the quantity as per your needs and requirements.
2. You can reduce the number of ingredients too.
3. Make sure there are no specks/dust in the grains before you start.
4. If you will make the salty version of sathumaavu kanji (porridge), then reduce the amount of cardamom added. Cardamom tastes good in the sweet version.
5. I will post a separate post on how to make sathumaavu kanji. You can make a sweet version or add salt and buttermilk and make a salty version.
6. It is very essential that there is no trace of moisture in the grains. If the grains are moist and humid that increases the risk of bacteria formation. Drying in sun and roasting the grains well and cooking the powder well before consumption nullifies this risk.


Until next time,
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