Archive | August, 2009

Potatoes with Dill Leaves

31 Aug

potato_dill
Alu Suva Bhaji.

Potatoes are paired with aromatic herb called dill leaves in this recipe. Potatoes are first boiled in water till cooked and chopped into small cubes. Oil is tempered with spices, garlic and green chiles. Then boiled potatoes and dill leaves are cooked in tempered oil till done.
Makes: 3 – 4 Servings of Potatoes with Dill Leaves.

Ingredients:

Potatoes 4 Small
Fresh Dill Leaves 1 Cup packed
Garlic 3 Cloves
Green Chiles 2 – 3
Turmeric Powder a pinch
Salt to taste

Talimpu:

Urad Dal 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/4 tsp
Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Broken Red Chiles 6
Asafoetida a pinch
Oil 2 tsps

Method of preparation:

Remove stems, wash and slice the green chiles.
Peel and lightly mash the garlic cloves.
Thoroughly wash dill in fresh water, remove any tough stalks and finely chop it.

Wash and halve the potatoes.
Bring to boil few cups of water in a sauce pot.
Add potato halves and cook till they turn soft but not mushy.
Strain the potatoes, peel and chop them into small cubes.

Heat oil in a pan, add all talimpu ingredients in order.
When urad dal changes color, add sliced green chiles, mashed garlic cloves, cooked potatoes, chopped dill leaves and turmeric powder.
Stir well to let dill leaves stick to the potatoes and cook covered for few seconds.
Uncover, fry till potatoes start to brown a little and dill leaves are cooked.
Finally season with salt and serve potatoes with dill leaves with plain steamed rice.
Notes:Make sure potatoes are not overcooked.

Suggestions: If potatoes are not cooked properly, sprinkle a tbsp of water and cook covered on low flame till done.
Variations: You can add half a tsp of red chilli powder to tempering if you wish.
Other Names: Aloo aur Sowa Bhaji, Surva Bhaji.

Stuffed Plantain Fritters

29 Aug

plantain_bajji_stuffed
Aratikaya Bajji Masala.

Plantain fritters are made by dipping the sliced plantain in gram flour batter and deep frying them till golden color. Then the plantain fritters are stuffed with finely chopped onion and peanuts. Various spices are also mixed with the stuffing for heat. Finally lemon is squeezed to make the fritters little tangy.
Makes: 10 – 14 Stuffed Plantain Fritters.

Ingredients:

Plantain 1 Small
Besan 1 – 1 1/4 Cup
Onion 1
Roasted Peanuts 20 – 28
Red Chile Powder 1 tsp
Cilantro few sprigs
Salt to taste
Lemon 1
Soda bi Carb a big pinch
Oil for deep frying

Method of preparation:

Remove ends, remove thick outer skin and chop plantain into thin circles that hold their shape.
Make sure the circles are not too thin and soak them in cold water until required.
Peel and finely chop the onion.
Clean, remove hard stems and finely chop cilantro.
Halve the lemon and squeeze out the juice if you wish.

Heat oil in wok on medium high heat for deep frying, add few pinches of salt.

In a mixing bowl, add besan, salt and soda-bi-carb.
Add sufficient water little by little to make thick flowy batter almost having honey like consistency.

Dip each plantain circle in besan batter making sure the batter is coated on both the sides of the plantain.
Remove the dipped plantain circle from the mixing bowl and slowly drop into hot oil.
Plantain circle should sizzle once it hits hot oil else oil has not reached required temperature.
Repeat the same with other plantain circles until the surface of oil is full.

Fry on both sides until golden brown and remove the plantain fritters on to kitchen napkin.
If the oil is smoking hot, reduce the heat little bit and bring it back on after a while.
Once all the plantain circles are made into fritters, leave them until they are warm enough to handle.
Slit each of the fritter in the middle on one of the faces making sure not to cut them into half.

In a mixing bowl, mix thoroughly chopped onion, red chile powder, cilantro, salt.
At first, stuff each slitted plantain fritter with two or more roasted peanuts.
Then stuff the plantain fritters with spoonful of the prepared chopped onion mixture.
Squeeze few drops of lemon juice on top of each stuffed plantain fritter.
Sprinkle a pinch of red chile powder and little salt on top of plantain fritter for extra spice.
Serve stuffed plantain fritters as a snack with few wedges of lemon on the plate.
Notes:Make sure plantain fritters are fried properly before removing from heat.

Suggestions: If the fritters come out too thin and little hard, add another pinch of soda bi carb to the batter and try again.
Variations: Sprinkle chaat masala on top of the stuffed plantain fritters. You can also add red chile powder to the besan batter for extra spice.
Other Names: Stuffed Raw Banana Fritters, Barwan Kaccha Kela Bhajiya, Plantain Bhajia.

Amaranth Stems Curry

28 Aug

amaranth_stems_curry
Thotakura Pindi Miriyam.

Amaranth Stems are the young green tender stems left from plucking all the amaranth leaves. These amaranth stems are cooked in various ways just like drumsticks are cooked. In this popular recipe, rice and chana dal is soaked for sometime and ground into fine paste along with other spices. Amaranth stems are boiled till soft and cooked in the ground paste till done.
Makes: around 4 Servings of Amaranth Stems Curry.

Ingredients:

Amaranth Stems 1 Cup Packed
Rice 3 tbsps
Chana Dal 2 tbsps
Black Peppercorns 1 – 1 1/2 tsps
Coriander Seeds 1 tsp
Grated Coconut 2 tbsps
Salt to taste

Talimpu:

Urad Dal 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/4 tsp
Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Curry Leaves 6
Broken Red Chiles 6
Oil 1 tbsp

Method of preparation:

Soak rice and chana dal in enough water for an hour.
Grind the soaked ingredients into smooth paste using enough water.
Then add black peppercorns, coriander seeds, grated coconut and salt and grind again into smooth paste.
Take the ground rice paste into a bowl.

Choose thick amaranth stems and pluck all the leaves off.
Wash amaranth stems thoroughly, remove any hard fiber cover and chop the stems into 1-2 inch long pieces.

Heat few cups of water in a small sauce pot, add chopped amaranth stems, turmeric powder and salt.
Boil until amaranth stems are cooked and turn soft but not mushy.
Strain the cooked amaranth stems and reserve for later use.

Heat oil in a pan, add all talimpu ingredients in order.
When urad dal changes color, add cooked amaranth stems, ground rice paste and quarter cup of water.
Cook on medium flame until most of the water is gone.
Once the mixture stops sticking to the bottom of the pan, fry for 3 more minutes.
Serve amaranth stems curry with plain steamed rice and dollop of ghee.
Notes:Make sure amaranth stems are cooked well before straining them.

Suggestions: If rice mixtures feels raw, make sure the curry is cooked well before removing from heat.
Variations: You can also add green chiles if you like more spice. Amaranth Stems with Gram Flour, Amaranth Stems in Tamarind Sauce and Amaranth Stems in Sesame Sauce are few others.
Other Names: Amaranth Stems with Ground Rice.

Plantain with Mustard Seeds

27 Aug

plantain_ava_petti
Aratikaya Ava Pettina Kura.

This is one of the traditional and popular Andhra dishes. Plantain is cubed and boiled in enough water till just cooked. Oil is tempered with dals and plantain cubes are added and cooked in tamarind extract. Finally mustard seeds paste is mixed into the plantain curry.
Makes: 3 – 4 Servings of Plantain with Mustard Seeds.

Ingredients:

Plantain 3 – 4
Tamarind 2 – 3 inch sized ball
Mustard Seeds 1 tbsp
Turmeric Powder a pinch
Salt to taste
Oil 1 tsp

Talimpu:

Chana Dal 1/4 tsp
Urad Dal 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/4 tsp
Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Curry Leaves 8
Broken Red Chiles 10
Asafoetida a big pinch
Oil 1 tbsp

Method of preparation:

Remove thick skin and dice plantain into bowl full of water.
Soak tamarind in quarter cup of water for sometime and extract all the juice.

Bring to bubble few cups of water in a sauce pot, add chopped plantain and little salt.
Boil till plantain pieces turn soft but not mushy.
Strain the plantain pieces and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan on medium flame, add all talimpu ingredients in order.
When chana dal changes color, add cooked plantain, tamarind extract, turmeric powder and salt.
Mix thoroughly, mash lightly with the back of a spoon and remove the curry from heat.

Grind mustard seeds and pinch of salt with little water into smooth paste.
Immediately add the mustard seeds paste and a tsp of oil to the plantain mixture.
Mix everything thoroughly and serve plantain with mustard seeds over plain steamed rice and dollop of ghee.
Notes:Make sure to cook the plantain just right before adding to the tempering.

Suggestions: If plantain is not cooked well, sprinkle a tbsp or more of water and cook covered on low flame till done. Don’t add mustard seeds paste till the very end.
Variations: Spicy Raw Banana with Mustard Seeds is another variation to this recipe.
Other Names: Kaccha Kela Curry, Ava Arati Kaya.

Pumpkin Curry

26 Aug

pumpkin_coconut
Erra Gummadikaya Kobbari Koora.

Pumpkin is boiled in water till little soft. Oil is tempered with spices and cooked pumpkin is added along with sour tamarind extract, sweet jaggery and red chili powder. Coarsely ground mustard seeds and scraped coconut gives this dish its distinct flavor.
Makes: around 4 Servings of Pumpkin Curry

Ingredients:

Red Pumpkin 1/4 th of Small One
Scraped Coconut 2 tbsps
Jaggery 2 (2 inch blocks)
Tamarind 2 – 3 inch sized ball
Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Red Chile Powder 1/2 tsp
Turmeric Powder a pinch
Salt to taste

Talimpu:

Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Curry Leaves 6
Broken Red Chiles 5
Coconut Oil or Peanut Oil 1 tsp

Method of preparation:

Wash, peel and chop pumpkin into large chunks.
Soak tamarind in quarter cup or more of warm water for sometime and extract all the thick juice.
Make sure coconut is scraped or grind it into paste.
Pulse mustard seeds into coarse powder.

Bring to boil a cup of water, add the chopped pumpkin, turmeric powder and salt.
Boil till pumpkin turns little soft and later strain the pumpkin chunks.

Heat oil in a pan on medium flame , add all talimpu ingredients in order.
When mustard seeds start spluttering, add red pumkin chunks, tamarind extract and jaggery.
Let the jaggery dissolve completely during which pumpkin pieces start to fall apart.
Then stir in scraped coconut, mustard seeds powder, red chile powder and salt.
Stir well, taste and adjust any seasonings if required.
Serve pumpkin curry with plain steamed rice and dollop of ghee.
Notes: Little older coconut tastes good with this dish.

Suggestions: If the pumpkin curry is too sour, add more jaggery. If the pumpkin curry is too sweet, add more tamarind extract.
Variations: You can also grind green chiles with coconut for extra spice.
Other Names: Gummadikaya Pachadi, Mathan Puli Pachadi.