Monday, July 24, 2017

Vegetable Ragi Soup - Finger Millet Soup with Vegetables

VEGETABLE RAGI SOUP
Restaurants serving millet based food are on the rise today.  Most of the eateries in Karnataka have always been serving Ragi Muddae Oota since a long time. After the rise of the millets in the urban scene Ragi Soup has become the in- thing in food courts of corporate offices. Traditional Ragi Kanji turns into a nutritious Ragi Soup with the addition of vegetables! 

INGREDIENTS
Ragi flour - 2 tbsps
Finely chopped vegetables - 1/2 cup
Onion (Slivered) - 1 tbsp
Crushed ginger and garlic - 1 tsp
Crushed pepper - 1/2 tsp
Salt - 1/2 tsp
Olive oil or sesame oil - 1 tbsp
Water - 2 glasses 
METHOD
1. Steam cook the finely chopped vegetables till al dante.
2. Heat oil in a pan and fry the onion slivers till they turn golden brown.
3. Add crushed ginger and garlic and fry till it gives out a pleasant aroma.
4. Add the steamed vegetables and saute for two minutes.


5. Pour the two glasses of water into the pan and bring it to a boil.


6. Mix Ragi flour with little water to make a paste and stir it into the boiling water.
7. Stir and cook till it turns shiny and reaches a thin soup consistency.
8. Mix in salt and turn off flame.
 Garnish with crushed pepper and enjoy the Vegetable Ragi Soup while it is hot. 


You may add a dash of Tomato Sauce or Chilly Sauce if you wish to. Thin Vegetable Ragi Soup with the crunch of crushed pepper is a healthy and appetizing starter.Where as a thick soup becomes a healthy meal in itself.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Godambi Tondekai Palya - Cashew and Ivy Gourd Dry Curry

GODAMBI TONDEKAI PALYA
Ever since the Portuguese brought Cashew to Goa, cashew nuts  have become an integral part of the traditional recipes of the Konkan Coast. Godambi Tondekai Palya (Cashew nut and Ivy gourd Curry) is my family's favourite after tasting it at a Mangaluru wedding lunch. There is always a rush to procure tender raw cashew nuts which are available only during the season. Since I prepare this curry often I use the normal cashew nuts which are readily available in the market. A tender texture can be obtained by soaking the cashew nuts in warm water for at least half an hour before making the curry.


INGREDIENTS

Ivy gourd/ Tondekai ( Chopped) - 1 cup
Cashew nuts - 1 cup  
Salt - 1/4 tsp
Sesame oil or coconut oil - 1 1/2 tsps
Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp
Split black gram dal - 1/2 tsp
Red chillies (broken) - 2
Asafoetida - 1 pinch
Crry leaves - a few
Fresh coconut gratings - 1/4 cup
METHOD
1. Soak cashew nuts in warm water.
2. Wash and slit the Ivy gourds/Tondekai length wise into 4 or 6 pieces. Cut them across if the gourds are too big.
3. Cover the chopped Ivy gourd/Tondekai in water, add salt and cook till just done without allowing it to become mushy. Drain if there is excess water.
4. Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds.
5. When the mustard splutters add split black gram dal and fry till it turns golden brown in colour.
6. Decrease heat and add the broken red chillies, asafoetida and curry leaves and stir well.
7. Add the cooked Ivy gourd/Tondekai and mix well with the seasoning.
8. Drain and add the softened cashew nuts and stir together till the curry becomes dry.
9. Mix in the fresh coconut gratings and switch off flame.


Enjoy the Mangaluru special Godambi Tondekai Palya with any meal.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Parangi Pinju Chutney - Baby Pumpkin Relish

 PARANGI PINJU CHUTNEY
 Mami (my maternal aunt) comes up with enthralling facts and stories behind the traditional and rural recipes she shares with me. Since Mama (maternal uncle) was a Sugar Technologist  she lived with him in serene villages surrounded by paddy, sugarcane fields and sugar factories until Mama's retirement. They lived in a traditional home with a 'mutram' (central courtyard open to the sky) surrounded by sturdy pillars. The backyard sprawling with lush green plants and vines yielded fresh organic vegetables for daily consumption. Mami utilized the produce to the maximum by cooking delicious traditional dishes. Some times pumpkins the size of oranges dropped off the vine well before reaching maturity. When I was under the impression that they would land up in the compost pit, Mami  cooked them (tender peels included) into a delicious finger licking Parangi Pinju Chutney. She smiled at the surprised look on my face and said ' Nothing goes to waste! This is the done thing here!'

Baby pumpkins in a Pumpkin Patch near Portland.


Due to the nonavailability of a backyard garden or a pumpkin vine which dropped off Parangi Pinjus, I have used a piece of the store bought Pumpkin to make the chutney for this post!

INGREDIENTS


Pumpkin (Peeled and chopped) - 1 bowl
Sesame oil - 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp
Split black gram dal - 1 tbsp
Red chillies - 4
Asafoetida - 1 pinch
Salt - 3/4 tsp
Tamarind - the size of a small marble
METHOD
1. Heat one tsp of oil and splutter mustard seeds.
2. Add the split black gram dal and roast till it becomes golden in colour.
3. Add the red chillies and fry till they become crisp.
4. Add asafoetida and remove the seasoning into a plate when it emanates a very pleasant aroma.
5. Heat the remaining oil in the same pan and add the chopped pumpkin pieces.
6. Saute for a few minutes, sprinkle little water and cover and cook on low flame stirring now and then.
7. Switch off flame when the vegetable is cooked and allow to cool.
8. Grind the cooked pumpkin with salt, tamarind and the fried red chillies into a smooth paste.


9. Add the remaining seasoning and blend coarsely.
Parangi Pinju Chutney is ready to be savoured with hot rice.


 It can be used as a dip for various snacks. It also makes a delicious bread spread.