Advance planning

Jalebi (Diwali Special – 1)

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How long it takes : 30 minutes

Number of servings: 25-30 of the above size

Jalebi is a crispy, colourful and a very popular sweet among all generations. In my young days in Bangalore, there was a Gujarati stall that made fresh sweets, and my dadwould bring bring hot jalebi from there. I fondly remember how our entire family enjoyed it with immense relish. Indeed I can never forget those days that especially came around Diwali and other festive seasons.   I tried this a couple of times at home and thought of sharing it with my fellow bloggers for this Diwali. People have different versions for Jalebi and this is my version.  Here it is:

What you need to have:

1. All purpose flour – 1/2 Cup

2. Gram Flour (Chick peas atta) – 1 Teaspoon

3. Dry yeast – 1/3 Teaspoon

4. Sugar – 1/2 Teaspoon

5. Cooking oil – 1/2 Teaspoon

6. Zip lock cover – 1

7. Water – A little less than 1/2 cup (Luke warm)

Ingredients of Jalebi

What you do with what you have:

1. Sieve both gram flour and all purpose flour in the atta sieve and keep aside.

Sieved mix of all-purpose flour and chick peas atta

2. Heat the water to a lukewarm temperature and keep it aside.  Dissolve 1/3 Teaspoon dry yeast in a bowl and keep aside for about 5 minutes.  Add the atta mix from step 1 to it.  Also add sugar, oil and luke warm water and stir in such a way that there are no lumps.

Jalebi batter mix

3. Allow it to ferment for about an hour and is as shown in the image below.

Fermented Jalebi batter

Ingredients of sugar syrup:

1. Sugar – 1 Cup

2. Water – 1/2 Cup

3. Saffron – A few strings

4. Cardamom powder – 1/2 Teaspoon

5. Lemon juice – 1 Teaspoon

How to make sugar syrup:

4. Mix sugar, water, Saffron strings in a wide bowl  and keep it aside.

 Ingredients of sugar syrup

5. Place a skillet which is around 4″ height and a little wide with cooking oil in it on medium flame.  Fill in the fermented Jalebi batter in  in a Ziplock cover with a 3 mm hole in its corner and squeeze it till you get the required size of the Jalebi.

Jalebi batter being squeezed to make Jalebi

6. Fry it on both the sides till brown and crispy.

Jalebi being fried

7. Heat the sugar syrup from step-4 on medium flame. When it starts boiling, switch it off and add cardamom powder.

Sugar syrup being boiled

8. Dip the crispy fried Jalebi from step-6 into it for a few seconds and since both Jalebi and sugar syrup are hot, the syrup will be absorbed fast.  Repeat the process for the remaining fried Jalebi.

Fried Jalebi being dipped in sugar syrup

8. Enjoy hot crispy Jalebi .  Yummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm  Remaining may be refrigerated.

Ready to serve Crispy Jalebi

A closer view of Jalebi

How long it takes : 30 minutes

Number of servings: 25-30 of the above size

Good to remember: 

1. Use fresh maida, chick peas atta for the dish.

2. Adding lemon juice makes the syrup ideal.

3. Use fresh dry yeast, else the batter will not ferment.

4. While frying Jalebi check oil. If it is over heated, switch off and fry after it cools a bit.

5. Adding of colour to Jalebi is one’s choice.  I have not added colour at all as I prefer to avoid colouring agents.

Making Ghee from Butter

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Home-made Ghee

This recipe is dedicated to the many enthusiastic amateurs and beginners who visit my website, and to the seasoned kitchen chiefs and chefs who love to make things from scratch and to anybody who likes to know and preserve tradition.

What you need to have:

1. Butter – 2 cups (Approximately. Home-made or bought from store)

2. Cardamom or Turmeric leaf – 1or 2 (optional)

How to prepare butter at home

It is an easy process to make ghee from butter.

1. Boil either cow milk or the usual dairy milk and keep it aside for about an hour to cool down.

2. When cool, preserve it in a bowl / vessel in the refrigerator for about 3-4 hours until the time you want to use the milk again.

3. The thick crust formed on the top of the refrigerated milk is actually cream. Collect the cream in a separate bowl stored in the refrigerator.

4. One has to accumulate and gather the cream for about 7 days depending upon the quantity of milk you buy and the quantity of cream you get daily.

5. After a week of collecting cream, keep the bowl of cream at room temperature for about 4-5 hours.

6. Then, add 1 Teaspoon curds to it and let it stay at room temperature for about 8-10 hours (overnight as convenient).

7. Once the aroma of the curds is sensed, just run it in the mixer using the particular blade. Run the mixer for about 10 minutes to get the supernatant butter while butter milk is the residue.

8. Homemade butter is here.

                                                                                                        Extracted butter from milk cream

Number of servings: 1 and half cup of home-made butter

One can even buy unsalted butter from the super market and prepare ghee.  I always prefer home made ghee which is aromatic and fresh too than those available in super markets.

Making Ghee from Butter

What you need to have:

1. Butter – 2 cups (Approximately. Home-made or bought from store)

2. Cardamom or Turmeric leaf – 1or 2 (optional)

What you do with what you have:

1. Wash butter in water 2-3 times to get rid of the traces of butter milk in it and to wash off any odour in butter bought from the bazaar.

2. Place a skillet with washed butter with a spatula on medium/high flame if stirring continuously. Always better to keep it on medium flame to minimize chances of burning/overtly heated butter. Once it starts melting it makes a hissing sound.

                                                                                                           Butter being heated in a skillet

3. Keep stirring till all the vapours evaporate and the hissing sound stops.

                                                                                                          Preparation of ghee in progress

4. When it is about to be done, the bubbling will slow down and there is a brown powdered residue at the bottom of the skillet. Add crushed cardamom and switch off the flame.

                                                                                                     Ghee is in the process of being done

                                                                                                                                  Pure ghee is read

5. Pour it in a bottle on cooling.  I have poured it in a measuring cup to prepare laddoos. 🙂

                                                                                                          Ready to serve pure home-made Ghee

Number of servings: 3/4 cup ghee

Brown Cow Peas Saru-Upkari

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Ready to serve Cow-peas Saru-upkari

How long it takes – 45 minutes

Number of servings: 4-5

Brown cow peas in English is Alsandebi in Konkani. I have already put up Brown cow-peas gravy and is well received by the viewers and fellow bloggers as well. Today I would like to put up a healthy lunch side dish which can be relished with rice and plain papad. We normally sprout the lentils for extra flavour. Here it is.

What you need to have:

1. Brown Cow-peas – 1 cup

Brown cow-peas

Sprouted Cow-peas

What you do with what you have:

1. Wash and soak cow-peas in water for about 8-10 hours.  Drain water and tie it in cloth and keep it aside for over night. It will have been sprouted by then as shown in image-2.

2. Cook the sprouted peas in the cooker adding 3-4 glasses of water and a little salt as usual for about 30 minutes till done. Transfer it to a broad based bowl. Add required quantity of salt and water if needed and bring it to boil. (note – some salt added while cooking earlier)

Cooked peas being boiled adding salt

Ingredients of Seasoning:

1. Red chillies – 3-4

2. Garlic cloves – 10-12

3. Cooking oil – 2 Teaspoons

Ingredients of Seasoning

3. Place a spatula with 2-3 Teaspoons of cooking oil in it on the flame. Add pealed and crushed garlic cloves and fry it till light brown and crispy. When about to be done, add red chilly pieces to it.

Seasoning in progress

4. When the seasoning is ready, add this to the cooked peas from step-2 to it. Yummmmmmmmmmm and enjoy hot with rice and plain papad.

Ready to serve Cow-peas Saru-upkari

How long it takes – 45 minutes

Number of servings: 4-5

Note :

1. Both small and big varieties of peas can be used for the dish.

2. Always use sprouted peas. Without sprouting also can be prepared but will not be tasty. Sprouting also improves the nutritious value.

3. One can season with Mustard, Red chilly, and curry leaves as well.

Jackfruit Patholi (Jackfruit steamed pan cake)

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Jackfruit is a seasonal fruit which is available during the summer. It has a thorny covering outside and is availale in huge sizes depending upon the species. Jackfruit is the largest fruit in the world. Its consumed as a fruit directly as well a variety of dishes are made with jackfruits – chips, sweet porridge (payasam), idli and dosa etc. Raw/Tender jackfruits are used in curry and pickle as well.  I have already put up raw jackfruit stir-fry, jackfruit spicy dosa, mulika, jackfruit sweet idlis, raw jack chakko and also payasam (gharayi) and today I would like to put up jackfruit steamed dumplings (Patholi).    Read more about jackfruit on Wikipedia – among other things, its also the national fruit of Bangladesh !

The Jack tree with Jackfruits

What you need to have:

1. Jackfruit sheyaths – 2 cups

2. Sona masoori raw rice – 1 cup

3. Fresh grated coconut – 1/2 cup

4. Grated jaggery – A handful

5. Salt – A pinch

6. Cut banana leaves – 25
The You tube link is here


Fresh Jackfruit being cut


                                                          Seeds being removed                                                                                                              

Ingredients of jackfruit patholi

What you do with what you have:

1. Chop the ripe jackfruit and remove yellow sheyaths and also de-seed it and chop it.  Grate coconut and chop jaggery as well and keep it aside .

2. Soak rice in water for about an hour. Drain water and grind rice, jaggery, grated coconut and the chopped jack sheyaths in the mixer adding minimum water to a fine consistency. The dough should be to a spreading consistency and medium thick.

The ground patholi dough

3. This patholi should be stuffed with a mixture of fresh grated coconut and jaggery.

Ingredients of Patholi (stuffing)

1. Fresh grated coconut – 2 cups

2. Jagggery – 1 cup

Ingredients of stuffing

4. Mix both coconut and chopped jaggery in such a way that it will combine well to form a mixture                                                                                                                                              

The ready stuffing

5. Wash cut banana leaves and wipe it with a clean towel and spread the ground dough from step-3 on it .Place the stuffing also in it in the middle so that one is able to fold the leaf neatly.

Stuffing placed on the patholi

6. Repeat the process with the remaining dough and place the stuffing in the patholi. Place a wide bottomed bowl with required quantity of water in it. Bring it to boil and place the folded patholi in it in a row. Once it starts steaming, place the remaining patholi in the opposite direction above the it and cook it for 30-40 minutes closing it with the lid.

Patholi being steamed

7. When ready, enjoy it with honey and pure ghee. Yummmmmmmmmmm!!!!

Ready to serve patholi with ghee & honey

How long it takes – 1 hour

Number of servings – 20

Good to remember:

1. Always use sweet jackfruit for this dish so that jaggery can be minimised.

2. Make the dough to the required thickness so that it does not flow out of the leaf.

3. Placing the stuffing enhances the taste of the dish. Though many people add more of jaggery to the dough and avoid the stuffing.

4. One can even steam it in the pressure cooker like idly.

5. One can even use teak leaves  for the purpose.

6. One can enjoy better the next day than afresh!

Cabbage Sanna Polo

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Cabbage Sanno Polo

How long it takes: 1 and 1/2 hours

Number of servings : 15-20 of the above size

Cabbage in English, Pattha gobi in Hindi and Ele kosu in Kannada is a versatile vegetable which is used in so many dishes like the curry, bhuthi, ambat, cabbage vada, cabbage paratha, Cabbage bhath and finally Cabbage spicy dosa which we call “Sanna polo” in Konkani. It is a favorite in the Konkani community. Both my kids are great fans of this dish. It makes for a good combination with curd rice and dal rice. Here is the recipe for cabbage sanna polo:

What you need to have:

1. Toor Dal – 1/2 cup

2. Raw rice – 1 cup (sona masoori)

3. Fresh grated coconut – 2 Tablespoons

4. Red chilly – 20

5. Tamarind pulp – 1/2 Teaspoon Or (Bilimbi -4-5)

6. Asafoetida (soft ) Size of a peanut

7. Salt – To ataste

8. Cooking oil 1/4 cup

9. Chopped Cabbage – 4-5 cups(preferably tender)

10. Chopped onions – 2 cups

Toor dal and Rice for the Dosa batter

Chopped cabbage & onions

What you do with what you have

1. Wash and soak both Toor dal and rice seperately in two different bowls for about 2 hours.

2. Drain water from both soaked dal and rice and keep it aside.(To confirm if soaked or not pierce it with your nails and if it is done then it is confirmed.)

3. Wash and chop cabbage and peal onions and chop both of them fine and keep it aside seperately as shown in image-2.

Ingredients of Wet Masala & Batter

3. Grind fresh grated coconut, red chilly, tamarind and asafoetida, salt in the mixer to a fine consistency.

5. Add soaked toor dal to the wet masala and grind it to a fine consistency adding very little water so that it should be thick in consistency. Add soaked rice also to it and grind it to a medium coarse consistency.

Wet Masala Batter

6.Apply a little salt to chopped cabbage and onions mix well and add the wet masala from step-5 to it checking for salt.(The proportion of masala to cabbage-onion is 1/3 cup masala and 1 cup of the mixed veggies)

Spicy dosa batter mix

7. Place a dosa skillet with 1 teaspoon of cooking oil in it on low flame. When hot, just place a handful of the dosa-veggie mix on the skillet and flatten with your palm to required thickness and close it with a lid.

Dosa being fried

8. When cooked, just reverse the dosas and splash a little oil on it on medium or low flame depending upon your burners. Cooking on low flame will turn dosas very crispy and tasty.

Dosa being fried on the reverse

9. Ready to serve “Sanna polo” is as shown in the image below. Yummmmmmmm. Enjoy it with rice and dal!!!!

A closer view of “Sanna polo”

How long it takes: 1 and 1/2 hours

Number of servings : 15-20 of the above size

Good to remember:

1. The dough has to be a little spicy since on adding veggies it will turn bland.

2. Use very tender cabbage for this dish. One can even grate cabbage instead of chopping.

3. More veggies and less of the dough will turn dosas crispy and tasty. Always fry dosa on low flame only instead of burning it to make it bitter.

4. One can use drumstick leaves, in place of cabbage.

5. Jaggery is also used in some households.

Moong Ghashi (Coconut based Greengram Gravy)

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Moong in hindi – that is Hesrukalu in Kannada , Moogu in Konkani and Green gram in English. Sprouted grains is very good from the health point of view as well – look at the sprouted moong salad earlier on this blog. The dish I am putting up today – Moong Gashi – is considered a delicacy among the Konkanis, a favorite at home. It is almost mandatory on the menu at marriages and temple food. Do not forget to try the dish that is complementary with this – Mooga Saru.

What you need to have:

1. Sprouted Green gram – 1 cup

2. Chopped Yam – 1 cup

Sprouted Green gram

Yam and the plant behind

What you do with what you have:

1. Sprout the green gram at home by soaking it in water overnight. Drain water next morning, just tie it in a cloth and keep it aside for about 6-8 hours. By then it will have sprouted and is shown in the image above. Again soak it in water the next night. Morning it will be sprouted completely and you will be able to peal the skin.

2. Peal yam and chop it into small pieces.


3. Cook sprouted green gram directly on the flame in a skillet, adding salt and 4-5 glasses of water so that it is not overco0ked. Drain the water ( this is to be used to make the Mooga Saru ( soup ) and keep it aside.

20-11-2008-042Cooked Greengram

4. Cook chopped yam in the cooker adding a pinch of turmeric powder and salt till it is soft.

Cooked yam pieces

Ingredients of Masala:

1. Fresh grated coconut – 3/4 cup

2. Red chily – 3-4 (less spicy)

3. Tamarind or Bilimbi – 1/2 Teaspoon OR 2-3

4. Turmeric powder – 1 teaspoon

20-11-2008-039Ingredients of Wet Masala

5. Place a spatula with 1 teaspoon of oil in it on the flame and fry red chilly in it. Grind the above shown ingredients of wet masala including the fried red chillies in the grinder adding water in steps to a fine consistency.

20-11-2008-041Ground Wet Masala

6. Transfer cooked Greengram and yam from steps 3 and 4 into a broad based bowl and add ground wet masala from step 5 to it. Add required quantity of salt and water to make gravy to the dish and bring it to boil stirring every once a while.


Ingredients of Seasoning

Ingredients of seasoning:

1. Mustard seeds – 1 Teaspoon

2. Red chilly – 1

3. Asafoetida powder – 1 Teaspoon

4. Curry leaves – 2 strands

Place a spatula with 2-3 teaspoons of cooking oil on the flame. On heating, add mustard seeds to it. On sputtering add asafoetida power, red chilly pieces, and lastly curry leaves and switch off the gas. Pour it into the dish from step 6. Serve hot with rice as lunch side dish.

20-11-2008-048Ready to serve Mooga ghashi

How long it takes: 45 minutes (other than sprouting)

Number of servings: 4-5 people

Good to remember

1. One can use raw banana, potato, bread fruit, raw jack pieces, Drum stick  as a combination for this dish. Here I have used yam as a combination.

2. You may also add onions to the seasoning.

Blackgram Dal Appam (Plain Appam)

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I have already put up sweet appam in the context of being a prasadam for Sankashti. This appam is normally prepared either for tiffin, breakfast or even for lunch box. For this variety of appam we need Blackgram Dal, raw rice and Fenugreek seeds soaked like the normal dosa. The difference here is mainly in the proportion of the ingredients.

What you need to have:

1. Blackgram Dal-1 cup

2. Raw rice-1and 1/2 cup

3. Fenugreek seeds-1 Teaspoon

pict0010 Ingredients of Blackgram Dal Appam

Ingredients of topping:

1. Curry leaves – 5-6 strings

2. Corriander leaves – a handful

3. Ginger  – 4″ piece

4. Green chillies – 2

5 . Fresh coconut pieces- a few

pict0013 Ingredients of Appam toppings

What you do with what you have:

1. Wash and soak Blackgram Dal, fenugreek seeds together in water in a bowl for about 3 hours.

2. Wash and soak rice as well in a bowl of water for about an hour.

3. Grind Blackgram Dal in the grinder/mixer to a fine consistency adding water in steps like you grind for idlies.

4. Grind rice in the grinder adding water in steps to a medium fine consistency. Mix this to the dal batter from step 3 and allow it to ferment overnight adding required quantity of salt. The fermented batter is as shown in the image below.

pict0012 The fermented blackgram dal appam batter

5. Chop green chillies, ginger, corriander leaves and coconut pieces fine and mix it to the batter and as shown in the image below.

pict0020 Appam batter mixed with the chopped toppings

6. Place appam tawa on medium flme and apply either cooking oil or butter to it. When heated simmer the flame and pour the batter into the moulds and close it with a suitable lid. The image below shows the holes once you have added the batter – this is due to the fact that the batter is fermented.


Appam batter being cooked in the moulds

7. Just reverse appam to roast on the other side and is as shown in the image below. They come out just by the touch of a spoon end or by a blunt knife.

26102008-025 Appam being cooked on the other side

When Appam is roasted light brown serve hot with either chutney powder/wet chutney/sambar or any of your favorite side dishes

26102008-0271 Ready to serve Blackgram Dal Appam with chutney