Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Malabar mutton curry/ Varutharacha mutton curry

We don’t buy Mutton/ lamb at home often, even when we buy it’s usually for biriyani so if you check my blog I don’t have much mutton recipes, but during this holiday time we have been entertaining a lot and I  have been cooking with mutton too. For my last party I promised my friends Keralan food so when I bought mutton, the first thing which came to my mind was this varutharacha mutton curry which my amma used to make a lot. To be honest I was never a fan of varutharacha curry back then so I rarely made it myself.

My hubby did ask me whether I am sure I want to experiment  as this is not something I cook often, usually when he say something like that I lose my confidence and give up on that dish and go for my tried and tested recipes but this time I was determined. I am glad that I didn't listen to him  as this curry turned out  super delicious. My friends loved  it too !

In this recipe I have added a leaf ( ramba leaf ) which was very new to me until my friend who is from Srilanka introduced this to me, something which they add a lot in Srilankan cooking usually to flavour rice. It’s readily available in Indian/Asian groceries here.You can read more about the leaf here. It's an optional ingredient so please don't bother if you don't have it. 

Recipe source – Amma and my own

Mutton/Lamb – 1 kilo
To marinate
Chilli powder -1 tbsp
Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
Ginger garlic paste – 1  tbs

Onion - 6 medium
Tomato -3 small
Ginger garlic paste – 1 tbs

To roast
Grated coconut/ ചിരണ്ടിയ തേങ്ങ – 1 ½ cup
Shallot/ചെറിയ ഉള്ളി – handful
Coriander seeds/ മല്ലി – 2 tbs
 Cinnamon /പട്ട– 1 stick
Cloves/ഗ്രാമ്പു– 4-5
Cardamom/ഏലക്ക -5
Star anise/തകോളം
Fennel/പെരുംജീരകം – 1 tbsp
Peppercorns/കുരുമുളക് – 1 tsp
Whole Red chilli/ വറ്റല്മുളക് – 3
Curry leaves/കറിവേപ്പില – 5-6 sprigs
Poppy seeds/cuscous/കസ്കുസ് – 1 tbs
Ramba leaf/ രംഭ ഇല /  ( optional) – 1 small piece

Coriander leaves/ മല്ലി ഇല
To temper
Coconut pieces/തേങ്ങാ കൊത്തു1 tbs
Shallots/ ചെറിയ ഉള്ളി  -4 thinly sliced

Curry leaves/ കറിവേപ്പില– few

  • Marinate the mutton with red chilli, turmeric, salt and 1 tbs ginger garlic paste for about 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • In a pan add some coconut oil and add the whole garam masala (cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, fennel,star anise) and when nice aroma comes out add grated coconut, coriander seeds, whole red chillies, curry leaves and roast for few minutes. When it start to turn change colour, add poppy seeds and carry on roasting until golden brown. DONOT roast beyond this point.

  • Once it’s cool grind it adding very little water into a smooth paste and keep it aside.
  • In a pressure add coconut oil and add chopped onion and saute until light brown.
  • Add in the rest of the ginger garlic paste and saute until raw smell goes.
  • Add chopped tomatoes, few curry leaves and cook for few minutes.
  • Add in the marinated mutton, 2 cups of water and pressure cook for 4 -5 whistles or until mutton is cooked.
  • Once the pressure releases open the pressure cooker and add the ground masala paste, curry leaves, ramba leaf and boil everything for 5-10 minutes. 
  • In a small pan add coconut oil and fry the sliced shallots, coconut pieces separately until brown, throw in some curry leaves along with them before you remove them fire and add it to the gravy.
  • Add chopped coriander leaves and garnish. 

Monday, January 4, 2016

Chilli fish with step by step pictures


Good time surely flies... before I blinked my eyes two weeks of holiday just flew past! sigh..No more late nights or alarm free mornings :( but I think to appreciate and enjoy the holiday we need to earn the break or it won’t be this fun. Anyway I am glad that I got back into the mood of blogging during this break and I actually took an effort to take pictures of things I cooked. I am not sure how long that is going to last though.

Coming to today’s post, chilli fish is one of my favourite dishes. I have been making this for a long time now, especially when I have friends over but like many other recipes it never found its way to blog. It’s such a hassle free recipe with no deep frying bit but still tastes awesome.Talking about the  step by step pictures eventhough I managed to click all the steps they are not really good ones as my helper (hubby) got so impatient and ditched me after taking 1-2 pictures so I  had to click most of it with one hand  :)

 For marinade and frying 
Boneless fish - 500 gm
Maida/ Plain flour - 6 tbs
Cornflour - 3 tbs
Ginger garlic paste - 2 tsp
Pepper - 1 tsp
Water - 1/4-1/2 cup
Egg -1
Oil for shallow frying 

For sauce
Onion - 3 medium (cubed )
Spring onion – 5 ( chop whites and green and keep them separate)
Capsicum/ pepper - 1
Green chillies - 2( cut diagonally )
Minced ginger – 2 tsp
Minced garlic – 2 tsp
Tomato sauce/ tomato ketchup – 5 tbs
Soya sauce - 4 tbs
Chilli garlic sauce - 2 tbs
Oyster sauce ( optional ) – 1 tbs
Cornflour - 2 tbs
Water - 5 tbs

  • In a bowl add Plain flour, cornflour, salt, pepper, ginger garlic paste, egg and water and make a batter ( thick enough to coat the the fish) 

  • Dip the fish in the batter and shallow fry them in a pan adding oil flipping the sides until they are golden brown for about 5 minutes on each side. Drain it on paper towel / kitchen tissue and keep it aside.

  • In the same pan add minced ginger, minced garlic and fry for 1-2 minutes.  
  •   Add cubed onions and chopped green chillies and sauté until onions are soft.  
  • Add spring onion whites and saute for a minute or so.
  • Add tomato sauce.  
  • Add soya sauce.
  • Add oyster sauce.   
  • Add chilly garlic sauce and cook for few minutes until oil starts to separate. 
  • Add chopped capsicum and stir for 1-2 minutes.  
  • Now add the fried fish and coat it in the sauces and cook it covered for 3- 5 minutes.   

  • Finally dissolve 2 tbs of corn flour in 5 tbs of water and pour this to the paneer and mix well. 
  • Cook for another 1-2 minute and  sprinkle the sprinkle the spring onion greens turn of the flame.            

Enjoy !                                                                                                                                               

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Mirch ka salan / Green chillies curry

A New year again..fresh chapter, new hopes, new resolutions.. Let’s hope this year is going to be a great one for all of us. Wishing you all a very Happy New Year once again.

“A curry with chillies! OMG ” Is that what you are thinking ? That's what I thought  when I saw this curry in other blogs.  Our spice tolerance level is really low now, so there was no way I was going to try this until I tasted this from S’s place. She served  Hydrebadi biriyani with this salan and it was a great combination indeed so it didn’t take long before I tried it myself. I made it several times with biriyani but when we smell biriyani we are always hungry and never wait to take any pictures before we eat. Wondering how I manged this time? This time I made the curry first so I had some time while biriyani was on Dum J

I still don’t dare to use green chillies for this salan instead always use milder versions of chillies but if you think you can handle hotter green chillies go ahead and use it !

Recipe source - Vahrehvah
Onion – 1
Cinnamon stick – 1 inch stick
Cloves – 2
Cardamom – 3
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Whole red chillies - 1
Cumin seeds – ½ tsp
Fenugreek seeds – ¼ tsp
Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp
Red chilli powder – 1 tsp
Coriander powder – 1 tbs
Tamarind paste – 1/4 tsp
Yogurt – ½ cup
Ginger garlic paste – 1 tsp
Sugar – 1 tsp
Green chillies/  milder green chillies – 100 gm
Curry leaves
Coriander leaves – finely chopped
Mint leaves- finely chopped

To roast
Sesame seeds – 1 tbs
Peanut – 1 tbs
Grated coconut/dessicated coconut – 1 tbs


  • In a small pan add oil and add peanuts roast for few minutes.
  • Add sesame seeds until slightly golden
  • Finally add coconut powder and roast for a minute or so. Let it cool down and then grind it to a smooth paste adding little water.
  • Slit the chillies , remove seeds if you want and shallow fry it in little oil and keep it aside.
  • In another pan add oil and add  mustard seeds when in sputters add  whole garam masala, cumin seeds and fenugreek seeds until it releases a nice aroma.
  • Add chopped onions and saute until it is brown.
  • Add ginger garlic paste and curry leaves saute for a minute or so.
  • Add chilli powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and hing.
  • Pour the ground paste, tamarind paste, some water and cook for 5 minutes.
  • Add beaten yogurt and cook for another 25 minutes or  until the oil separates.
  • Finally add the slit chillies, chopped coriander, mint and sugar and cook for another 5 minutes. 

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Tres Leches cake

This season is all about indulging isn’t it? I have been baking non- stop for almost the whole of the December; making edible gifts for friends, baking workshop, cake orders and also baking for dinner parties. My oven baked many batches of fruits cakes, brownies, apple roses, peanut crunchy bars, vanilla cake, cupcakes etc. Some nights, I used to be up in the kitchen until midnight baking and my legs ached like hell. But I really enjoyed making home-made gifts. This year I took a plunge and also tried my hands on some non - edible DIY gifts which I am really pleased with and can’t wait to share it with you all soon.

Anyway coming back to topic, I always like to try out new dessert recipes when I have friends over and Tre leche cake has been on my list for some time. I made this dessert when we had friends the other day and it was enjoyed by all. To be honest I won’t call this phenomenal, especially when I compare it with my other desserts, but the good thing is, it is so easy to put together and it’s yummy.

Recipe source - here

Plain flour – 1 ½ cup
Butter – ½ cup/ 115 gm ( melted)
Sugar – ¾ cup
Eggs – 5 large
Baking powder – 1 tsp
Salt – pinch
Vanilla extract – 1 tsp
For soaking
Condensed milk – 1 can /390 gm
Evaporated milk – 340 gm can
Milk – 1 cup
For whipping
Whipping cream/double cream – 2 cup
Icing sugar – 3 tbs/ as per taste
Vanilla extract – 1 tsp
Fresh fruits (optional)

  • Sift flour, baking powder, salt and keep it aside.
  • Cream eggs and sugar in an electric mixer for few minutes. The mixture will increase the volume.
  • Add vanilla extract and beat again.
  • Add the dry ingredients and fold in.
  • Finally add melted butter and fold in.
  • Pour the batter in a greased 9 inch cake pan and bake for 30 -35 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
  • Whisk condensed milk, evaporated milk and milk together in a bowl.
  • Transfer the cake onto a plate and poke holes on the hot cake and pour/spread the milk mixture slowly  on top of the cake with a spoon.
  • Let the cake cool for 1 hour.
  • Whip the cream with icing sugar and vanilla extract and spread it on top of the cake.
  • Decorate with fresh fruits or as you like. 

Monday, December 28, 2015

Prawn Tempura

Hello all,
Hope you all are enjoying the festive time. It’s all about good food and catching up with friends for us this time. I have been looking forward to relax this holiday but bizarrely holidays are busier than usual and time is flying.

We spent our Christmas at G's place and it was an amazing one this year. I feel stuffed even when I think about it.  G did most of the cooking; in fact she cooked up a storm. The only thing I made was this prawn tempura and a banoffee pie.

It was during one of my skype conversation with mother in law that she mentioned about this cookery show she has been watching and about the tempura recipe she was impressed with. I was in luck when I searched for the programme in youtube and got the recipe here.  The tempura tasted great when served hot. Before I took them to the party I quickly took few pictures for the blog just to break the silence. I have many food pictures in my drafts and some of them are really keepers, perhaps my New Year resolution this year should be to update the blog as much as I can. More than anyone I think I refer back to my blog for recipes so it would really help me to save the time when trying to recreate the recipe!

Before I sign off let me wish you all a very Happy New Year!

Prawns (large) -20
For batter
Corn flour – 3 tbs
Plain flour – 5 tbsp
Egg white– from 1 egg
Pepper – ½ tsp
Water – as required

Bread crumbs to coat (optional)
Toothpicks (optional)
Oil  for deep frying

  1. Deshell the prawn leaving the tails and keep it aside.
  2. Insert a toothpick inside the prawn ( this is to keep the prawns straight after  frying as prawns tends to curl when they cook)
  3. Make the batter with the ingredients mentioned under batter and dip the prawns in it and coat them in bread crumbs.
  4. Deep fry the prawns in a low flame for 3-4 minutes or until done.
  5. Remove the toothpicks from the prawns and serve hot with some dipping sauce.

Enjoy !

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Pesarattu/ Cherupayar dosa /Moong dosa

Hope you all are doing good. It has been a while  since I disapperaed isn’t it ? More than 2 months to be precise. My past two months have been really the best two months ever. I was holidaying in  Dubai and India for almost 6 weeks. It was an amazing one this year, catching up with friends and family, fun outings, Onam festival, get togethers … Infact after this years holiday we haven’t  recovered yet. The longer you go probably longer it takes to get back to routine, but gradually things are getting back to normal.

Coming to todays recipe, Its Pesarattu, it was something new to me until  I got to taste it from my friend  next door who is from Andhra. This recipe is from her and we all love this protein packed dosa at home. I pair it up coconut chutney and onion chutney and it works as a  treat for  us usually  on  weekends.

Whole green Moong/ cherupayar – 1 cup
Rice – ½ cup
Ginger -  2 inch piece
Green chillies – 2-3
For topping
Onion – 1
Coriander leaves – finely chopped few

Soak Moong and rice overnight.
Grind it with green chillies and ginger to a smooth batter.
Batter shouldn’t be too loose.
In a griddle or pan pour the batter and spread it as thinly as possible.
Sprinkle some finely chopped onions and coriander leaves on top.
Cook for a minute or so and flip it over and cook the other side.
Serve hot with peanut chutney, onion chutney or coconut chutney.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Curd rice/ thayir sadham

It has been only cakes recipes in my blog lately so I had to take an extra effort to post something different before another cake recipe and this Thayyir sadham which I prepare quite often these days  perfectly fitted the bill. The weather in this part of the world has been super hot and at home I don’t feel like eating  cooking any dinner on a hot day and  this curd rice is a life saver on such days...  a perfect comfort food for a hot day ! 

Rice - 1 1/4 cup 
Carrot - 2 grated
Cucumber - 1/2 of cucumber ( finely chopped)
Ginger minced - 1 tsp
Coriander leaves - finely chopped 
Yogurt - 1 cup
water - 1/4 cup

for tempering/tadka
Mustard seeds -  1 1/2 tsp
Peanuts -2 tbs ( optional)
Urad dal - 2 tsp
Whole red chilli - 2
Asoefitida/hing/ kayam - a pinch
Curry leaves

  • Cook the rice and drain. Mash it with a spoon.
  • Transfer the mashed rice into a saucepan and add yogurt/curd and water and place it on a low flame until yogurt is warm.
  •  Add grated carrot, chopped cucumber, ginger, coriander leaves and salt and remove from fire.
  • For tadka take a small pan and add oil and when its hot add mustard seeds when it sputters add urad dal , peanuts  and when it becomes light brown add  whole red chillies, curry leaves and hing and heat for few seconds and remove from fire. 
  • Add tadka to the rice and serve hot !
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