Wednesday, October 19, 2011


With winters just round the corner, sniffles are fast beginning to make an appearance. And the best way to combat this is with a hot glass of spicy South Indian Rasam. Besides warming your body and clearing your nasals, this drink is probably one of the most appetizing digestives. So what are you waiting for? Lets starting making our TOMATO RASAM.

Ing: 3 large tomatoes
       2 tbsp tamarind pulp
      1/4 tsp turmeric pd
       1/2 tsp chilli pd
     1/4 tsp asafoetida
       3 cups boiling water
      salt to taste
Rasam Powder: 1 tsp Cumin seeds
                           1 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
                          8 peppercorns
Method: Combine all the ingredients for the rasam powder and microwave at 70% power for 2 minutes. Cool and grind. Pierce the tomatoes with a fork and Microwave at full power 4 minutes. Peel and discard the skin and run in the blender till coarsely mashed. Combine the hot water and tomatoes. Add the rest of the ingredients, including the rasam powder. Microwave at full power for 4 minutes. Serve hot with steamed rice or slurp like a soup :)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Coconut Burfee

I admit i have a major sweet tooth! And one of my favorite childhood memories was sneakin Coconut Burfee while the clan took it's afternoon siesta :D
To put it simply, coconut burfee is a kind of fudge-like square of coconut heaven! It is easy to make and lasts days at room temp (well, that is if you resist temptation!!!). Iam biased here and like only my granny's recipe. The rest just don't match up. The measures are approximates rather than standards as is the norm with most old recipes. I have tried to simplify the guesstimates as far as possible. And for the very first time, sharing this family heirloom, you will need:

1 portion (ie 1 cup/glass/mixing bowl/ any constant measuring device)  grated fresh coconut
3/4th portion sugar (if you want to get really perfectionist, then it is 7/8th of a portion!!!)
Just enough milk to cover the sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla essence or green cardamom powder

Method: Heat the milk and sugar on medium flame, till the sugar melts. Take care to avoid crystallization, and keep stirring. When the syrup reaches a thick  dropping consistency, (beyond one-string), add the coconut. Let it cook awhile till it begins to bubble and thicken. Stir occasionally. When the mixture starts to dry slightly and sticks to the sides, turn off the gas. Add the essence and let it stand for a minute. Before it cools, quickly pour onto a well greased plate. Cut into squares once slightly cooler but not completely cold.
Pig out whenever you need a quick sugar fix ;D

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Pasta for One!

Lets be honest, everyone loves pasta...but often the effort prompts a takeout, especially if you are cooking for just one. So the other day when Ma decided she wanted pasta for dinner it prompted a long pros-cons discussion. But hey! when she wants pasta, she gets pasta!!! Rustling this pasta for one was a real breeze, just a few ingredients from the trusty cupboard and we were good to go :)

a handful of uncooked Spaghetti
2 cheese-chicken sausages
4 flakes garlic
1/2 tsp mixed herbs
2 1/2 cups hot stock or boiling water
2 tsp olive oil
salt  and pepper to taste

Method: Heat oil in a pan and fry the sausages till well done. Take out the sausages and in the same oil fry the minced garlic till brown. Add the stock/water, herbs, salt and the spaghetti. Cook till pasta is done. Typically, all the liquid should be absorbed by this point. If required, add more stock/water. Sprinkle pepper and top with  sliced sausages. Just dig in and go mmmmm!!
And hey, don't forget, all cooking is open to re-invention...share yours :D