Saturday, June 7, 2014

Whole Wheat Banana Bread

  1. Whole Wheat Flour – 1½ Cups
  2. Bread Flour -1 Cup
  3. Baking powder – 1 tsp
  4. Baking soda – ½ tsp
  5. Salt – ½ tsp
  6. Overripe Bananas – 6 
  7. Brown Sugar/Sugar – 1 ½ Cups
  8. Eggs – 3 (at room temperature) 
  9. Melted Butter – ½ cup 
  10. Walnuts or Pecan or Any nuts roasted and chopped  - ½ Cup(I mostly add it but did not use it this time)
  11. Luke Warm Water – ½ Cup(only if required i.e. if batter is too think)

How I made It:-
  • Pre-heat the oven to 350 degree F.
  • Grease a bread tin or cake pan with butter or cooking spray
  • In a wide bowl add Wheat flour, bread flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Either sieve or mix very well with a wire whisk to remove lumps if any.
  • In another bowl, add the melted butter and sugar. Use a hand mixer or electric mix to beat them well until creamy.
  • Add Eggs one at a time beat well again till it becomes creamy.
  • Add quarter portion of the flour and blend well with a spatula or run the hand mixer in low speed. Keep adding the flour and blending them together.
  • Now grind or mash the bananas very well and add it to the batter little by little and  gently blend the whole mix till everything is incorporated well.
  • Pour into the pan and bake it for 40-45 minutes or until a tooth pick/tester inserted comes out clean.
  • Serve warm for breakfast or with a cup of coffee

Monday, May 19, 2014

Green Beans Thoran/Stir Fried Green Beans

Ingredients Used:
  1. Beans – I bunch
  2. Onion – 1 chopped fine
  3. Green chilies – 3
  4. Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
  5. Urad daal – 1 tsp(optional)
  6. Dry red chilies – 4
  7. Curry leaves – 2 sprigs 
  8. Turmeric Powder – ¾ tsp
  9. Salt to taste
  10. Coconut Oil/Vegetable Oil – 1 tbsp.
  11. Grated Coconut – ¼ cup(optional)
Preparation Method:
  • Wash and drain the beans, pat dry them with towel/paper towel. Chop them fine and set aside. Finely chop onion and green chilies
  • Heat up a wide pan or Kadai, pour Oil to the pan. Add mustard seeds and wait till they splutter. Reduce the heat to medium
  • Add urad daal, curry leaves, dry red chilies and stir for a minute or till the urad daal turns golden color
  • Add Onion, green chilies and sauté till the onion turns translucent. Add turmeric powder and stir for few seconds
  • Add chopped beans, sprinkle the salt and stir well. Cover with a tight lid and keep the heat in low-medium.
  • Let it cook for five-seven minutes, make sure you lift the covered lid and stir well couple of times making sure the beans do not stick on to the bottom of the pan and burn.
  • Open the pan and check if the beans are cooked enough by gently pressing them, beans will turn soft as you press them
  • If they are not cooked enough cover and cook for another three-five minutes. Open the lid, check for the salt and adjust accordingly. Switch off the stove when they are cooked enough.
  • Add the grated coconut and stir well to combine. Add more curry leaves and keep it covered till they are ready to serve.
  • Move to a serving bowl and serve warm with Rice or Roti !!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Kozhi Nirachathu Malabar Style/Stuffed Chicken Roast in Spicy Gravy Malabar Style

I had been planning to post the recipe of this wonderful dish from not sure how long, every single time I make this delicious Kozhi Nirachathu/Stuffed Chicken, I take pictures and save them but then compiling and editing pictures and composing this post took me for ever. Better late than never right?? 

Kozhi Nirachathu is one of the most popular dishes of Malabar region of Kerala (Northern Kerala). The whole chicken is first marinated in spices and then either braised or broiled(even pressure cooking works). The broiled chicken is then stuffed with some boiled eggs well coated with sauteed onions, raisins and cashews. OK.. mouthwatering isn't it? The process is not done yet.. The whole chicken is then cooked in spicy onion tomato sauce to perfection. Now without delaying further let me go ahead a post this very delicious, Malabar Special Recipe - Kozhi Nirachathu - Akka Stuffed Chicken in Spicy gravy.

Ingredients Used : -
To Marinate:
  1. One Whole Chicken ~ 2.2lbs/1 Kg (or use two small Cornish hens)
  2. Turmeric powder - 3/4 tsp
  3. Chilly powder - 1 tbsp
  4. Black Pepper powder - 1 tsp
  5. Salt - 1tsp
  6. Lemon/Lime juice from 1 lemon/lime
For Filling:
  1. Boiled Eggs - 2
  2. Raisins few (optional)
  3. Cashews few(optional)
  4. Onion sliced fine - 2
  5. Greens chilly chopped fine - 2
  6. Freshly crushed Ginger-garlic - 1tsp
  7. Raisins, cashews - 1 tbsp each (optional)
  8. Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
  9. Black Pepper powder - 1/2 tsp(or red chili powder)
  10. Coriander powder - 1/2 tsp
  11. Garam Masala - 3/4 tsp
  12. Curry leaves few
  13. Coriander leaves chopped - 2 tbsp
  14. Coconut Oil/Veg Oil - 2 tbsp
For Gravy: 
  1. Red Onion Sliced fine – 3 (~3 Cups)
  2. Tomato – 2(~2 Cups)
  3. Ginger chopped fine - 1tbsp
  4. Garlic chopped fine –1 tbsp
  5. Green Chilly slit into halves – 3
  6. Curry leaves – 3 to 4 sprigs
  7. Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
  8. Chili powder – ¾ tsp (optional)
  9. Crushed fennel seed – ½ tsp
  10. Coriander powder - 1 tsp
  11. Garam Masala – 1tsp
  12. Coconut Oil/Veg Oil

 Preparation Method:-
  1. First step is making the chicken ready for the preparation. Take out the chicken parts/giblets packet that comes with whole chicken from the cavity and set aside.
  2. Peel off the skin and make incisions on the whole chicken especially on chicken breast and legs.
  3. Squeeze a lemon/Lime, add a spoon off salt and apply all over the chicken. Wash the whole chicken one or two times and pat dry with paper towel.
  4. Make a marinade of items listed under marinate list. Marinate the whole chicken by rubbing  all parts of the chicken and making sure the marinate get inside the incisions. Set aside for 1 or 2 hours.
  5. Now you can either braise(fry or slow cook in reduced heat) the chicken or  pressure cook it according to the time availability. Pour coconut oil in a deep and wide pan big enough to hold the whole chicken. Add Curry leaves and saute. Now add the whole chicken
  6. Reduce the heat to medium and Cover with a lid. Let it cook for seven-nine minutes. Open the lid and turn over the chicken slowly making sure the chicken don't stick onto the pan and start breaking.
  7. Cover and cook again for another five-seven minutes or until chicken is well cooked inside. Take off the stove and set aside.

Egg Masala for Stuffing:-
  1. Heat up another frying pan, add coconut oil to it, add raisins and saute till it pop up, strain and set aside. Add cashews saute till golden, strain and set aside.
  2. Add curry leaves and saute for few secs, add onion, ginger, garlic and salt and saute till onion turns light brown.
  3. Add turmeric powder, chilly powder, coriander powder and saute well to blend everything. Add the garam masala and saute well to combine.
  4. Add the boiled egg, fried raisins, cashews and combine well to coat the boiled egg with masala. Set aside to cool completely
  5. Stuff this egg masala into the braised chicken cavity.
Chicken Gravy:-
  1. Heat up a kadai, preferably the same one used for braising so that the gravy gets all the chicken flavor. Add more oil if required, add curry leaves, onions, ginger-garlic, green chilies and saute well till onion turns golden color.
  2. Add chopped tomatoes and saute till they are fully mashed up.
  3. Add turmeric powder, crushed fennel, chili powder, coriander powder, garam masala and saute well till everything is combined.
  4. If the masala is very dry add some water or coconut milk to add gravy and let it come to boil
  5. Now add the braised whole chicken and spread the gravy  on the whole chicken. Cover and cook on medium heat for three-five minutes.
  6. Open the lid and turn the whole chicken over. Stir the gravy making sure not to stick on the bottom of the pan. Cover and cook again for three-four minutes. Remove from the stove. Sprinkle some more curry leaves and keep it closed until ready to serve
  7. Drizzle some lime/lemon juice just before serving.
  8. Serve warm with Rice/Roti/Chappathi. Enjoy !!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes ~ Soft and Fluffy


So, which is your favorite kinda pancake? And how do you make soft and fluffy? My pancakes are mostly wheat ones as I try to make a better and healthy breakfast/meal. I do a lot of fruity ones and banana pancakes are default when I see the overripe bananas sitting on counter-top crying for my 


My friend Manju gets vegetables and fruits from a near by store. On a Saturday evening she brought me a lot of banana which was really overripe and asked me to make some something out of it. Next day I made banana pancakes for breakfast and baked some banana bread in the evening. I served the pancakes topped with butter and whipped cream. Kids loved them with whipped cream


Ingredients: -
1.       Whole wheat flour – 2 Cups
2.       Eggs – 3
3.       Milk – ½ Cup
4.       Water ~ 2 ½ Cups
5.       Overripe/Ripe bananas – 4
6.       Salt a pinch
7.       Sugar – 2 tbsp.
8.       Baking  Powder – ½ tsp.(optional)
9.       Butter as needed(to spread  and top the pancakes

Preparation Method:
·         Add flour, salt, sugar and baking powder to a wide bowl and mix well using a wire whisk.
·         In another bowl, beat eggs very well.  Pour the beaten eggs to the flour mix and stir slowly with the whisk.
·         Add milk and gently mix. Make sure there are no lumps.
·         Grind the bananas in a mixer or Mash them very well using the whisk or fork.
·         Add the banana to the batter, combine well again. Add water if the batter is too thick, batter should be of pouring consistency. Set aside for 15-20 mins.
·         Wash a non-stick pan or griddle, wipe clean with a clean cloth/towel. Put on the stove to heat up the pan, make sure the stove is kept in medium heat. Butter the pan.
·         Mix the batter with a ladle/spoon. Pour a small ladle of batter, do not spread the batter. As the pancake gets cooked, you will see the bubbles forming on top of the pancake.
·         Turn the pancake upside down before the base gets darker. Let it cook for a minute or two. Take off the pan.
·         Wipe the pan with a damp cloth and repeat the process.
·         Serve the pan cakes topped with butter. Pair them with whip cream, strawberries and maple syrup. Enjoy!!!

1.       For the best tasting pancake, make sure the base of the pancake do not turn dark, it should be of golden brown color. For this maintain the stove temperature to medium or if it electric figure out the best temperature to make sure the pancakes are slow cooked.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Ambalappuzha Paal Paayasam and Happy Vishu Wishes/അമ്പലപുഴ പാൽപായസവും വിഷു ആശംസയും

Wishing Everyone A Very Happy Vishu !!
എല്ലാവർക്കും വിഷു ആശംസകൾ 

I agree, I had always been on and off throughout. But this phase of my life seemed the busiest ever. Family, Work and more work had kept me away from blogging for few months. I go through my fellow bloggers blog posts randomly but never get more than five minutes to sit infront of my laptop. I always feel guilty seeing my blog hybernating but did not have the time, energy and mindset to do blog post which needs a bit of compiling on write up and picture edits. I didn't want to do a random post which will not do justice to the recipe and myself.

Starting this year I have been actively involved in a Malayalee Association here in Washigton DC and is the Entertainment chair for Year 2014. We have a lot of events lined for year 2014 of which Vishu celebrtion was one of the most important one. NSGW celebrated Vishu 2014 on Saturday, April 12th for which we had in store a list of cultural programs. I had been co-ordianting for all the programs, finalizing the program chart, co-ordinating with choreographers, staging the kids group, conference calls on delegating tasks etc etc whick took most of my evenings and weekends. And at the proffessional end it is crazy  busy with Release deadline coming up by end Of this month.

Even though the past 3 months had been hectic, the end result was really sweet and memorable one which I will cherish in my entire lifetime. The Whole Vishu celebration was purely Vishu theme based.  We didnt have any cinematic dance kind of programs, instead we had a pure cultural event where the kids and adults performed on Vishu related themes/skits and songs. At the end of cultural programs we had a proffessional Drama 'Viradam' based on M.T Vasudevan Nair's Novel 'Randamoozham' performed by a 'Akkarakazhchakal' serial fame Haridev and Sanjeev's proffessional drama team from NJ. We were all excited meeting the team and working with the group, I also participated in a folk dance as part of the drama and also our ladies dance team including me from Maryland, USA performed a semi-classical dance.

Okk, I think thats enough about the stories, now let me share with you the recipe of this Ambalapuzha paalpayasam which is very apt for making on Vishu day to be served to Lord Sree Krishna. Ambalapuzha Palpaayam is considered as the most favorite payasam of Sree Krishna in Ambalapuzha temple, Alapuzha. There is a very beautiful story tale behind the evolution of this very famous and delicious payasam. You can refer to this link to read more.

Ambalapuzha paal paayasam Recipe as follows
  1. Unakkalari/Broken Matta Rice - ¼ Cup(If they are not available you can use Basmathi Rice)
  2. Milk - 1 ½ Litre
  3. Sugar - ½ Cup
  4. Raisins few
  5. Cashews few
  6. Ghee - 1 tsp
  7. Cardamom pods -6
  8. Sugar - ½tsp
Preparation Method:-
  • Pour milk into a pressure cooker, add sugar and stir well. Bring the milk to boiling point.
  • Rinse the rice one or two times and add to the milk. Stir well again till the bottom making sure rice is not sticking to the bottom.
  • Cover with the lid, put on the whistle. Reduce the heat to the lowest and let it cook for 20-25 minutes.
  • Put off the flame. Let it cool down completely to open the lid.
  • Heat up a small Wok/pan, add ghee, saute cashews and saute till golden brown. Remove and add to the payasam. Add raisins to the same ghee and saute till it pop. Add tot he payasam.
  • Crush/grind the cardamom with ½ tsp of sugar and add to the payasam. Stir well and serve warm. Enjoy!!
Note: The smallest jar of the Indian Mixer is very handy to grind the cardamom pods and sugar to get the cardamom powdery, it smells awesome and blend well with the payasam without any tiny lumps.

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