Friday, October 29, 2010

Poha (Atukula) Upma

Atukula Upma is one of the quick and easy breakfast/brunch/evening snack when running short of time and energy. I remember making it often while pursuing my master's after a hectic schedule at school. This is great when eaten hot and I enjoy it with curds. Few of them prefer tomato sauce. This is a dry item, so sometimes is preferred to be eaten with buttermilk.


2 cups Poha (thick Atukulu)
1 small onion
2 tbsp peanuts
2 tbsp cashews
1 green chilly
1 lime
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp oil


1 tsp Cumin seeds
1 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tsp Channa dal
1 tsp Urad dal
1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
1 red chilly
Curry leaves


1. Add oil to a pan, and add all the seasoning ingredients.

2. Add peanuts and cashews and fry it for some time.

3.In a bowl of water, soak the poha for about a minute and drain the water. meanwhile, fry the chopped onions and green chilly.

4. I don't prefer the poha to absorb much water, so I quickly drain the water, it depends on how you want the poha, if you want it to be soggy/soft you can soak them in water for more time. After the onions are fried, add the drained poha.

5.We don't use the chilly powder here and instead get the hot taste from the red and green chilles. The chilly powder doesn't get dissolved as there is no water. Add the turmeric, this gives a nice color to the poha.

6.Add some salt and saute everything and remove it from the flame.

7. Squeeze a lime at the end before serving.

+1 (IDEA)

Can grate carrots/beets in the end. I enjoy the raw vegetables, so this makes the poha nutritious. I also like it with yogurt/buttermilk since its a dry dish.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Beerakaya(Ridge Gourd) Egg Curry

Lets see how to make this curry combination. Egg is added to this recipe as sometimes, the ridge guard is too sweet and most people don't prefer the sweet taste.Egg adds a different flavor to the curry


2-3 long Ridge Guards
1 onion
2 long green chillies
1 tsp ginger garlic paste
1 tsp coriander powder
2 tsp milk
2 tbsp olive oil (any oil of your choice)
Few chopped cilantro
Chilly powder


Mustard seeds
Cumin seeds
Urad dal
Channa dal
Curry leaves


1. Firstly, remove the outer layer of the ridge guard and finely chop it into pieces. This outer layer of the ridge guard is used to make a chutney/pickle. I would add that recipe shortly, this was called "Beerakaya Pottu Pachadi" by my granny and I just love it, in combination to the curd rice.

2. Add oil to a pan, after heating for a while, add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds,urad dal, channa dal, curry leaves, chopped green chillies and onions.

3. Finely chop the green chillies into thin pieces, this adds to the taste and also if eaten doesnt burn. Fry it till the onion turn golden brown.

4.Now add the ginger garlic paste and fry it till the raw smell disappears.

5.Now add the choppped and washed ridge guard pieces. The water used for washing is sufficient enough for it to boil and no need to add any extra water. Close it with a lid for about 8-10 mins and let it boil on medium flame.

6. Next, add the milk and saute it. Add the salt and chilly powder accordingly. Since we added green chillies, we may add some less chilly powder. Add the coriander powder and mix everything together.

7.Lastly, Break an egg into this curry and mix everything till it gets dry. Egg brings a different flavor to the curry. Style it with chopped cilantro.

This is great to be eaten with chapathi's and rice.Some people don't really like ridge guard and find it boring, so hopefully this combination might catch their attention!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Custard (Fruit salad)

Fruit Salad is one of the simple recipe's one would learn.This is mostly served in parties and weddings or lunches and get- together functions.This is one of the earliest recipe I learnt, could be in my 8th grade if I am right.We used to make it in the night and prefer eating the next day after lunch, specially during the Indian summers, this would be a treat! I would love to add mangoes, as it is my fav fruit and so for most of them.


3-4 cups of Milk
2 cups of water
2-21/2 cups sugar
Custard Powder
Few Tutty Fruity
Any choice of your fruits


1.Boil Milk and water on a medium flame. Add the sugar and stir well. Here you could check the sugar levels and add according to your levels.

2. Now take the custard powder into a bowl and add some water, mix it thoroughly and then add this into the milk. We do this because if the custard powder is added directly to the boiling milk, this causes some small clusters. So, we need to first dissolve it in water and then add it to the hot milk.

3. Stir well for some time to observe a thick cream forming. At this point, remove it from flame and place under a fan or near a cool place and let it cool.

4.After it is completely cooled, add the tutty fruity and all the fruits of your choice. My choice would be peeled and finely chopped apples, bananas,strawberries,oranges,cantaloupes and pomegranates.

+1 Idea

Can style it with nuts like cashews or raisins and add some thick cream to make it more rich. Can add a variety of fruits such as Honey dew melon, kiwi or blue berries etc.

Double Ka Meetha

Double ka Meetha or the bread sweet, however it is called, it is one of the hot favorites of Hyderabadi dessert! It is usually served in functions and parties. I learnt this dish from one of our cook's. She taught me how to do this easily and deliciously! So, lets see how to make this dessert.


White Bread
1 cup sugar (accordingly)
2 tbsp raisins
2 tbsp whole cashews
2 tbsp sliced almonds
1 cup water
2 cups Ghee (accordingly)


1.Firstly Boil about 2-21/2 cups of milk, according to the number of slices of bread, it is just an approximation. Add one cup of water and sugar and stir well till the sugar dissolves well. Check the sugar levels here and add if needed.

2. Now, in a frying pan, add about 1/2 cup ghee and fry all the nuts till the raisins bulge neatly. Don't over burn them as the raisins taste bitter if heated extra.Remove from the pan.

3.In the same pan, add the remaining ghee and deep fry the white bread slices. People prefer to do one by one, but this consumes a lot of ghee, so I prefer making the bread slices into 2 or 3 pieces and fry all of them at once so that every bread piece is fried in the ghee.

4.Now, add the milk into the bread, most of it is absorbed by the bread, style it with all the fried nuts.

+1 Idea

You could add some pecans or any of your fav nuts and heavy cream or sugar syrup to make it more rich.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Sunni/Minappa Laddu

Sunni/Minapa laddu's are considered to be very healthy, specially for kids. Since it consists of Urad dal/Minapappuwhich is fiber rich and also ghee. When made with jaggery it is very nutritious as you avoid the sugars but due to the bad quality of jaggery here in the USA, it gets difficult to make a fine powder out of it. This is recipe is made for about 6-7 laddu's, also it depends on what size you make the balls.


3 cups Urad dal
1-3/4 cup sugar
Cashew nuts
Cardamom seeds
1 cup ghee


1.Finely Dry Roast the Urad dal till you observe an amazing aroma. Don't burn it, but just dry roast till they change their color. Keep it aside and let it cool.

2. Add the ghee to a pan and fry the cashews and raisins. The raisins would bloat up and fry till the cashews are light brown, don't burn them, this might give a sour taste to the raisins. Add the cardamom seeds. This ignites a great smell and flavor to the laddu's.

3. After the Roasted urad dal is cooled, grind them into a fine powder. Sometimes, when you grind while the content is hot, it degrades the grinder/mixi performance, sorry for using the IT jargon, I will try to minimize that and include more of the cooking dialect.

4.Add the powdered sugar and grind the content together.

5 Now, add the mixture to the ghee and make round balls with your palms.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Quinoa Mixed Vegetable Upma

Quinoa is a south american grown grain-like crop. The reason for picking this recipe is due to its enormous nutritional values. It is compared to oats and unlike rice or wheat, contains a complete set of balanced essential amino acids for humans. It is gluten free and considered to digest very easily.This is one of the healthy breakfast which includes all the vegetables and nuts.


1 cup quinoa
1 whole onion
1 green chilly
1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
1/2 cup Mint leaves (Pudina)
1 1/2 tsp olive oil
1 cup finely chopped cabbage
1 cup grated carrot (Optional)
1/2 cup grated beetroot (Optional)
1/2 cup corn
1/2 cup peas
1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro
1/2 cut lemon
Mirchi powder (accordingly)
Salt (accordingly)


This is very similar to vegetable upma prepared by south Indian families using Bombay rava/Vermicelli.

1.Boil Quinoa:
For 1 cup of Quinoa, use 2 cups of water and boil it for about 15-20 minutes on medium flame. You can see the quinoa opening up with a white stalk coming out. Once all the water is evaporated and the quinoa is well cooked, remove from flame and keep it aside.

2.Take a pan, add about 1-1/2 tsp of olive oil.(Can use any oil, olive oil is preferred for its taste)

3.Add the finely chopped onions, chopped green chillies and fry till they turn golden brown.Add the mint (pudina) leaves and now you can smell an amazing flavor. The combination of onions, mint and oil creates an awesome mouth watering smell.

4.Add the Ginger Garlic paste and fry for 2 minutes.

5.Now add the chopped cabbage,peas and corn. Let it cook for sometime. No need to add water, as the cabbage is already washed and it retains water in it.

6. Add the well cooked quinoa that you kept aside and mix all the content together on a low flame.

7.Add the mirchi powder and salt according to the taste levels.Mix well and remove from the flame.

8.Finally, dress it up with the grated carrot, beetroot and cilantro.

9.Squeeze the Lime just before you eat for a refreshing yummy taste.

So, there goes the Quiona Mixed Vegetable Upma!

+1 (IDEA)
Can add boiled broccoli or chopped lettuce or meal maker to make it more nutritious and delicious! Style it with sliced almonds, cashews or walnuts.