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Home Made Yogurt

14 Jan

yogurt
Perugu.

Home made yogurt can be prepared in multiple ways. By using yogurt or using store bought cultures. Yogurt machines can also be used to get the best results. Here, yogurt is prepared by simple method without using any tools and store bought cultures.
Makes: 2 Cups of Home Made Yogurt.

Ingredients:

Milk 2 Cups
Whisked Plain Yogurt 1 tbsp

Method of preparation:

Bring milk to boil in a sauce pot.
Let the milk bubble for 3 – 5 minutes and remove from heat.
Alternatively, warm the milk in a microwave using a microwave safe bowl.
Stir in yogurt when the milk is warm but not hot.

Cover the pot and keep undisturbed for 5 – 8 hours or overnight.
Depending on the season and the bacteria active in yogurt, the fermentation may take more time.
Once the milk is tight, refrigerate to remain the yogurt fresh for couple of weeks.
Save a tbsp or more of the prepared yogurt for fermenting next batch of milk.
Serve home made yogurt when necessary.
Notes: Make sure milk is not too hot or not too cold.

Suggestions: To accelerate the process, add a whole red chili or whole green chili to the milk before leaving undisturbed. You can also place the milk pot inside the oven with its light switched on to create a warm place.
Variations: You can also use store bought culture instead of using fresh yogurt.
Other Names: Home Made Yogurt, Perugu, Dahi.

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How to make Moong Sprouts

9 Jan

moong_sprouts
Molakettina Pesalu.

Sprouts can be made in quite a few ways. Here, there are couple of easy ways to sprout any lentils or beans.
Makes: around 2 1/2 Cups of Molakettina Pesalu.

Ingredients:

Whole Moong 1 Cup

Method of preparation:

Method 1:

Wash and soak whole moong in water overnight.
Refresh the soaked moong in fresh water next day.
Drain the water and tie the moong in a muslin cloth (or spread on one and cover with another kitchen napkin) and leave for 2 – 3 days.
Wash the muslin cloth every 6 hours under running water and hang it to drain the excess water.
Sprinkle water every few hours to make sure the cloth is always damp.
Once the moong sprouts, untie the cloth, refresh the sprouts under running water.

Method 2:

Soak whole moong in water overnight.
Refresh the soaked moong under running water the next day.
Spread the soaked moong on a wide colander and cover with wet towel for around 3 days.
Every day, place the colander under running water to refresh the moong.
Once the water is drained, cover again with wet towel.
Always make sure the towel is damp else sprinkle water to make it wet.
Once the whole moong sprout, refresh under fresh running water for the last time.

Method 3:

Soak whole moong in water overnight and then refresh under running water.
Transfer the soaked moong in to a box having multiple perforations.
Wash the moong every 6 – 8 hours under running water and close the lid of the box.
Once the moong sprouts, refresh under running water.
Alternatively, use a wide jar with perforated lid for the same purpose in which case, always stand the jar on its lid to drain excess water.

Method 4:

Using a sprout maker, arrange the soaked moong in one of the middle tier (with a water outlet).
Fill the top tier with water and close the lid.
First, place the empty bottom tier, then layer it with the moong tier and then finally layer it with water tier.
Discard the bottom tier water every day and fill the top tier with water every day.
Once the moong sprouts (2 – 3 days), refresh the sprouts under running water.

Notes: Once the sprouts are done, refrigerate for a week or two.

Suggestions: Make sure to soak the moong in water well before transferring to the sprout maker. When the sprout is a little longer than the size of its lentil or bean, its ready to eat.
Variations: The same process can be followed during making any kind of sprouts (lentil sprouts / bean sprouts).
Other Names: Sprouts, Moong Sprouts.

Coconut Apple

2 Oct

kobbari_puvvu
Kobbari Puvvu

Ingredients:

Coconut 1

Method of preparation:

By carefully breaking and opening a sprouting coconut, you will find what is called coconut apple.
Coconut apple is delicate spongy mass with slight sweetness and pleasant coconut aroma.

Ligthly scrub the coconut apple if required.
Skin has all the texture and flavor, so make sure not to scrape deep.
This coconut apple can be eaten fresh as is or can be chopped and sprinkled with sugar crystals.
Notes: Make sure not to store this coconut apple more than a day or two in refrigerator.

Suggestions: If the broken coconut has a very hard mass instead of soft spongy matter, the coconut might be too old and the sapling has absorbed all the juices. If there is a very small coconut apple instead of a fully formed coconut apple, the coconut might be too young for it has to develop the coconut apple.
Variations: You can also caramalize the coconut apple with few tbsps of sugar if you wish.
Other Names: Kobbari Puvvu, Coconut Apple.

Home Made Khoya

23 May

khoya
Pala Kova.

Khoya or mawa is a solidified condensed milk. Milk is boiled down till most of the moisture is evaporated and all left is a thick yellowish solid mass. It takes around 3 – 4 hours to reduce milk from 4 – 5 cups. Khoya is a very versatile substance which can be used to make both savory and sweet dishes (Khoya Puri, Gulab Jamun, etc…). A specially made tool is available in India which when placed in milk avoids scorching. Ceramic jar cap can also be used in this way.
Makes: around 1/2 Cup of Khoya

Ingredients:

Skimmed or Whole Milk 4 Cups

Method of preparation:

Heat a heavy bottomed wide vessel on medium – low heat, add milk and bring to boil.
Keep boiling the milk by stirring frequently to avoid scorching.
Reduce the milk till it reduces to almost 1/8th of original measure.
When milk thickens and turns grainy, remove from heat.
Cool and refrigerate the khoya in a tight jar till needed.
Notes: Make sure to always keep the bottom from burning.

Suggestions: If the bottom of the pan seems burnt, remove the milk into another pot to boil. The khoya becomes hard after cooling, so make sure remove khoya before its too solid.
Variations: Evaporated milk can be used to reduce the boiling time to half. Adding sugar at end makes it sweet and is called dhoodh peda / pala khova.
Other Names: Kowa, Mawa, Khova, Condensed Milk Solids.

Home Made Paneer

11 Apr

home_made_paneer
Paala Virugudu

Paneer is tasteless and saltless unaged Indian cheese. Paneer is made by heating milk to boiling point and curdling it with acid (lemon juice, vinegar, sour yogurt, etc…). The curdled milk is then strained into cheese cloth and pressed hard to remove excess water. Paneer can be pressed into a block by putting a heavy weight on the curds that are wrapped in a cloth. The squeezed curds are quite soft and can be used as a spread. The paneer that is pressed for short while called chenna is little soft and crumbling and can be used to make various sweets.
Makes: 1 1/2 cups of cubed paneer

Ingredients:

Full Fat Milk 1 gallon (app. 3.8 Litres)
Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice 2 – 3 tbsps

Method of preparation:

Bring milk to boil in a heavy bottomed vessel on medium flame.
Stir the milk frequently to avoid scorching.
When milk starts bubbling, switch off heat and stir in lemon juice into hot milk.

Stir once or twice around the sides with a spatula and let the milk coagulate.
After a minute or two, all the milk breaks down into white mass and floats on top of yellowish / greenish liquid called whey.

Place a cheese cloth or muslin cloth on a sieve and pour the milk into lined sieve.
Whey is drained out while white curds are left behind in the cheese cloth.
Wash the collected curd under cold running water for few seconds.
Squeeze off the excess water by twisting the cheese cloth.
At this stage, the collected cheese is soft and spreadable.

Twist and tie the cheese cloth tight and hang it for around 2 hours to drip off the excess water.
When most of the water is dripped off, cheese is chunky and breakable with little moisture. This can called chenna which is used for making various Indian sweets.

Loosen the knot, place the cheese still wrapped in a cloth on a perforated plate.
Put a heavy weight on top and leave it for 3 – 4 more hours to set the cheese in to a block.
Chop the paneer into small chunks and freeze it in a zipper freezer bag. Don’t freeze it again once taken out.
Use the paneer within in 3 – 4 days of preparation.

Notes: After adding the lemon juice, if you don’t see the milk coagulating, add more lemon juice.

Suggestions: Use milk having more than 5% fat (buffalo’s milk) to get best paneer. Use either vinegar or sour yogurt to break the milk instead of lemon juice. Use of yogurt doesn’t change the taste of paneer while use of vinegar gives it a light acrid taste.
Variations: Skimmed milk can also be used to make paneer especially chenna but full fat milk is best suited for paneer. Paneer can be flavored during the process of preparation. When the milk is boiling, crushed spices like cumin, black peppercorns, fennel etc… are added.
Other Names: Cottage Cheese, Indian Cheese, Paala Virugudu, Sanna, Chhana, Chenna, Chhena.