Archive | May, 2012

Amaranth Leaves with Toor Dal

31 May

amaranth_toor_dal
Thotakura Kandi Pappu Podi Pappu.

Fresh amaranth leaves are washed and roughly chopped. They are then cooked in oil along with whole spices. Toor dal is boiled till soft but whole and added to the amaranth leaves. Serve amaranth leaves with toor dal over plain steamed rice and dollop of ghee or with roti.
Makes: around 4 Servings of Amaranth Leaves with Toor Dal.

Ingredients:

Amaranth Leaves 2 1/2 Cups Packed
Toor Dal 1 Cup
Garlic 5 Cloves
Green Chiles 2 – 4
Turmeric Powder 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste

Talimpu:

Urad Dal 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/4 tsp
Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Broken Red Chiles 2
Asafoetida a Pinch
Curry Leaves 6
Oil 1 tsp

Method of preparation:

Separate leaves, wash and roughly chop amaranth leaves.
Remove stems, wash and slice green chiles.
Peel and roughly chop the garlic pods.

Wash the toor dal under running water.
Pour few cups of water and boil toor dal in enough water until just cooked.
Make sure toor dal is soft but still holding its shape and looks translucent.
Strain the boiled toor dal and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan, add garlic and all talimpu ingredients in order.
When urad dal changes color, add green chiles, amaranth leaves and salt.
Cook covered on low flame for around 5 – 8 minutes or until amaranth leaves change color and turn soft.
Add few splashes of water if the leaves start sticking to bottom of the pan and cook covered again till done.
Then add boiled toor dal, turmeric powder and stir fry for a minute or two to evaporate any excess moisture from the dal.
Serve amaranth leaves with toor dal over plain steamed rice and dollop of ghee.
Notes: Make sure toor dal is cooked right.

Suggestions: If toor dal is not cooked properly, add few splashes of water to the pan and cook covered till done.
Variations: You can also boil the amaranth leaves in enough water and strain them before adding to the pan.
Other Names: Amaranth Leaves with Toor Dal, Thotakura Kandi Pappu Podi Pappu.

Fenugreek Leaves Tomato Curry

30 May

fenugreek_tomato_curry
Menthi Kura Tomato Kura.

Fresh fenugreek leaves are washed and roughly chopped. Gravy is prepared with onion, tomato and spices. Fenugreek leaves are cooked in the gravy along with dalia powder and other powdered spices. Serve fenugreek leaves tomato curry with steamed rice or with roti.
Makes: around 4 Servings of Fenugreek Leaves Tomato Curry.

Ingredients:

Fenugreek Leaves 1 Cup Packed
Onion 1
Tomato 2
Green Chiles 2
Garlic 2 Cloves
Dalia / Roasted Gram 2 Tbsps
Turmeric Powder a pinch
Red Chile Powder 1/4 tsp
Coriander Powder 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste

Talimpu:

Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/4 tsp
Urad Dal 1/4 tsp
Broken Dried Red Chiles 3 – 4
Curry Leaves 5
Oil 2 tsps

Method of preparation:

Wash, separate leaves and roughly chop the fenugreek leaves.
Remove stems, wash and slice the green chiles.
Peel, remove ends and finely chop the onion.
Wash and finely chop the tomatoes.
Peel and crush the garlic cloves.

Grind dalia into fine powder using spice blender.
Mix dalia powder with few tablespoons of water and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan on medium high heat, add all talimpu ingredients in order.
When cumin seeds start to sizzle, add chopped onion and garlic cloves.
Fry the onion till it turns light brown around the edges.
Then add green chiles and chopped fenugreek leaves.
Fry till fenugreek leaves wilt, stir in chopped tomatoes and cook till tomatoes soften and become mushy.
If tomatoes are not juicy enough, add few tablespoons of water along with tomatoes.
Then add dalia paste, coriander powder, red chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt.
Cook briefly and remove from heat.
Serve fenugreek leaves tomato curry with steamed rice or with roti.
Notes: Make sure to cook the fenugreek leaves well.

Suggestions: Adjust the amount of fenugreek leaves according to your preference.
Variations: You can also add a pinch of garam masala powder in the end if you wish.
Other Names: Fenugreek Leaves Tomato Curry, Menthi Kura Tomato Kura.

Bottle Gourd Gravy Curry

29 May

bottle_gourd_gravy
Bottle Gourd Gravy Curry.

Bottle gourd / Anapakaya is peeled, chopped up and boiled in water till just soft. It is then cooked in oil along with onion, tomato and with freshly ground peanut spice powder. The gravy curry is cooked till it comes together and finished with cilantro. Serve bottle gourd gravy curry with steamed rice or with roti etc…
Makes: around 4 Servings of Bottle Gourd Gravy Curry.

Ingredients:

Bottle Gourd 1/4 of Small Head
Onion 1 Small
Tomato 2 Medium
Green Chiles 1 – 2
Raw Peanuts 1/8 Cup
Garlic 1 – 2 Cloves
Whole Red Chiles 2 – 3
Coriander Powder 1 tsp
Red Chili Powder a Pinch
Cilantro few Sprigs
Salt to Taste
Oil 1 tsp (app.)

Talimpu:

Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/4 tsp
Urad Dal 1/4 tsp
Curry Leaves 2
Oil 2 tsps

Method of preparation:

Peel, remove outer ends, wash and chop the bottle gourd into small pieces.
Remove stems, wash and slice the green chiles.
Peel and finely chop the onion.
Wash and finely chop the tomatoes.
Peel and crush the garlic clove.
Wash and finely chop the cilantro leaves.

Boil around 2 cups of water in a sauce pot, add chopped bottle gourd and salt.
Cook till bottle gourd is just soft and strain the bottle gourd.

Heat few drops of oil in a pan, add bottle gourd pieces and salt.
Fry till bottle gourd pieces turn light golden brown and remove from heat.

Heat a tsp of pan on low heat, add peanuts and roast them till they turn light golden brown.
Remove the peanuts onto a bowl, add red chillies and garlic in the same pan.
Fry till red chillies change color and remove from heat.
Cool the fried ingredients to room temperature and grind peanuts, red chillies, garlic into fine powder using a spice blender.

Heat oil in a pan, add all talimpu ingredients in order.
When mustard seeds start spluttering, add green chiles and chopped onion.
Fry till onion changes color and starts to brown around the edges.
Stir in chopped tomato and salt.
Cook till tomatoes soften, add bottle gourd pieces, ground peanut powder, coriander powder, red chili powder and salt.
Cook on low flame (around 5 minutes) till the curry comes together and the bottle gourd absorbs all the flavors.
Stir in cilantro and remove the bottle gourd gravy curry from heat.
Garnish with cilantro and serve bottle gourd gravy curry with steamed rice or with roti etc…
Notes: Make sure not to burn any of the ingredients while frying.

Suggestions: Adjust spice with red chiles or with green chiles. If bottle gourd is not cooked well, put it back on heat and cook covered till done. If bottle gourd is overcooked in water and is falling apart, donot fry in the oil as described in the beginning of the procedure.
Variations: Check other bottle gourd recipes here.
Other Names: Bottle Gourd Gravy Curry.

Badam Pootharekulu

28 May

badam_pootharekulu
Badan Pappu Pootharekulu.

Poothareku is a famous coastal Andhra sweet made with thin flaky sheets of paper made of rice flour. For badam pootharekulu, blanched almonds are ground into powder along with sugar and is folded into the rice paper sheets along with pure ghee. Store the pootharekulu tight in a jar and they stay fresh for around a week or two.
Makes: around 5 Pieces of Almond Pootharekulu.

Ingredients:

Rice Paper Sheets 15
Almonds 15
Sugar 1/3 Cup
Pure Ghee 5 Tbsps

Method of preparation:

Microwave the ghee for around 20 seconds and keep it aside.
Soak the almonds in warm water for around 15 minutes.
Drain the almonds and peel the skin off and pat them dry.
Grind the almonds into fine powder along with sugar and remove onto a bowl.

Damp a kitchen towel with few splash of water.
Take a sheet of rice paper on the damp cloth.
Damp cloth helps to make the rice sheet little pliable.
Alternatively, sprinkle few tiny drops of water onto the sheet to make the folding easier.

Layer around a tbsp of almond powder onto the first rice paper sheet.
Pour a tsp of ghee all over the rice sheet.
Layer another rice paper sheet on the first sheet.
Spread around another tbsp of almond powder onto the second sheet.
Pour a tsp of ghee all over the rice sheet.

Spread around another tbsp of almond powder onto the third sheet.
Pour a tsp of ghee all over this rice sheet.
Fold one longest side onto the center of the sheets.
Fold other longest side to overlap the first folded side.
Spread around another tbsp of almond powder onto the folded strip.
Pour a tsp of ghee all over the rice strip.
Fold the ends of the sheet together once and fold the remaining part into a rectangular strip.
Repeat the same with remaining rice paper sheets.
Store the almond pootharekulu in a tight jar and serve when necessary.
Notes: Use 2 rice paper sheets during starting stage if one seem to be too thin and flaky.

Suggestions: Adjust the powdered sugar according to the preference.
Variations: You can also layer finely sliced bits of blanched almonds if desired. Bellam Pootharekulu made with grated jaggery.
Other Names: Badam Pappu Pootharekulu, Almond Pootharekulu.

Spinach Masala Fry

26 May

spinach_masala_fry
Palakura Masala Vepudu.

Fresh spinach is finely chopped and cooked in oil along with whole spices and freshly ground spices. Serve spinach masala fry with steamed rice and dollop of ghee or with roti etc…
Makes: around 4 Servings of Spinach Masala Fry.

Ingredients:

Spinach 3 Cups Packed
Green Chillies 3 – 4
Coriander Seeds 2 Tbsps
Clove 1
Cinnamon 1 inch Stick
Red Chili Powder 1/4 tsp
Salt to Taste

Talimpu:

Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/4 tsp
Urad Dal 1/4 tsp
Broken Dried Red Chiles 3 – 4
Asafoetida a Big Pinch
Curry Leaves 5
Oil 2 tsps

Method of preparation:

Heat a heavy bottomed pan on low heat, add coriander seeds and toast them till aromatic or till they change color.
Remove coriander seeds from heat and add the clove and cinnamon.
Fry for few seconds and remove from heat.
Grind the coriander seeds, clove, cinnamon and red chili powder into fine powder using a spice grinder.

Thoroughly wash, pat dry and finely chop the spinach leaves.
Remove stems, wash and slice the green chiles.

Heat oil in a pan, add all talimpu ingredients in order.
When mustard seeds start spluttering, add green chiles.
Fry briefly and stir in chopped spinach leaves.
Fry till spinach leaves wilt and start to crisp up.
Stir in freshly ground coriander seeds spice powder and salt.
Fry for few more seconds and remove from heat.
Serve spinach masala fry with steamed rice and dollop of ghee or with roti etc…
Notes: Make sure spinach is cooked well.

Suggestions: Adjust spice with green chillies. If spinach is not cooked properly, cook covered on low flame for few seconds.
Variations: Add a splash of lemon juice at the end of cooking process if you wish.
Other Names: Spinach Masala Fry, Palakura Masala Vepudu.