Mahanandi

Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Strawberry & Mango ~ Popsicles or Icepops

Mango and Strawberry - The King and Queen of Fruit Kingdom
Mango and Strawberry - The King and Queen of Fruit Kingdom

RP of ‘My Workshop’ commented that if mango was the king of the fruits, strawberry could be the queen of fruit kingdom. Very true, indeed. The kind of fervor we, Indians, reserve for mangoes is often shown for strawberries by the people here in the States. Romance, weddings and any special occasions of life… there come the strawberries.

The delicate ruby red beauties, the queens of berries, strawberries are high maintaince as queens should be. They don’t like to be crammed and they need a certain temperature for their beauty regime. If it is too hot, they will get spoiled within a day. Too cold, their flavor becomes elusive. Divas and prima donnas, with a mind of their own, they are the attention grabbers. Color, shape and smell… nothing subtle about them, except may be their sweet flavor. Though looks red and bulky, the supermarket variety is more tart than sweet. One has to have a taste of Indian mangoes to know how good mangoes are. Just like mangoes, one must taste freshly picked strawberries from farms or from open meadows to really know how good they are to understand the reason for fervor. Fortunate are those, who have tasted the real things in this life.

Here is a recipe showcasing them both - popsicles or ice pops of mango and strawberries.

Mango and strawberries with little bit of limejuice and little bit of sugar - blend, pour and freeze - homemade popsicles for hot summer days would be ready. Who doesn’t have memories of hot summer days and colorful popsicles?

Pouring the strawberry juice into molds

Recipe:

2 mangoes - peeled, cut and seed removed, finely cubed
15 to 20 strawberries - stems removed and cut into half
Sugar to taste
2 tablespoons of limejuice
****
Blender
Popsicle mold with sticks or popsicle sticks and small cups
Refrigerator

1 Prepare Mango Juice: Take mango cubes in a blender. Add a tablespoon of sugar (adjust depending on the sweetness of mangoes) and a tablespoon of limejuice and blend into smooth puree.

2 Prepare Strawberry Juice: Take strawberries in a blender. Add a tablespoon of sugar (adjust depending on the sweetness of strawberries) and a tablespoon of limejuice and blend into smooth puree.

3 Making Popsicles: Pour the juice into popsicles mold or small cups in a tray. You can prepare at least 4 different types of ice pops with these two juices. Plain strawberry, plain mango, mango (bottom half)-strawberry (top half) and strawberry (bottom half)-mango (top half) combinations. If you are using the cups, then place popsicle sticks into cups. Freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight.

4 Popsicle time: Place the tray in hot water for few seconds and pull out the pops from the molds or cups. Enjoy!

Mango-Strawberry Popsicle
Saying Goodbye to Mango Month and Welcoming the Strawberry Month with Mango-Strawberry Popsicle

Strawberry Popsicle
Strawberry Popsicle for JFI~Strawberries

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Fruits, Mango, Strawberries, Jihva For Ingredients (Wednesday May 31, 2006 at 3:07 pm- permalink)
Comments (34)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Three-Bean Curry (French, Indian and Lima)

Green Beans, Shelled Indian Beans, Baby Lima Beans
Green Beans, Shelled Indian Beans, Baby Lima Beans

Here in the US, farmers’ markets are usually bursting with fresh green beans during this time of the year. When we first moved here, during my getting to know the US veggies better phase, regular staple in my kitchen was curries and pulaos prepared with frozen green beans. Frozen green beans are cheap, already cut and cook easily. Taste not that good, still I bought them. But after a year of frozen stuff, I had enough and I’ve sworn off green beans entirely. Then, I discovered the farmfresh green beans of springtime and how good they tasted. From then on, along with radishes, beans became a springtime staple at my home.

My recipe here is same as the old classic, the favorite of Indian cookbook authors, where beans are cut into quarter inch length pieces, saut?ed with onions and green chilli-coconut paste. To this basic recipe, I have also added two other types of shelled beans to increase the nutritional value as well as taste. The shelled Indian beans (Papdi Lilva, the middle ones in the photo above) are available in frozen section of Indian grocery shops here, year round and baby lima beans; you could get them from regular grocery shops. They both taste little bit sweet and starchy, compliments the mildly woodsy taste of fresh french beans.

Sauteing the three-bean curry
Sauteing the three-bean curry

Recipe:

Fresh Green beans - 2 cups of chopped quarter-inch length pieces
Shelled Indian broad beans - ½ cup
Baby lima beans - ½ cup
Onion - 1, finely chopped
Green chillies- 4 to 6 and coconut powder, a tablespoon - made into smooth paste
Turmeric - ½ teaspoon
Salt to taste
For tadka or tiragamata:
1 tsp of peanut oil
1 tsp of mustard seeds, cumin, minced garlic and few curry leaves

Heat peanut oil in a kadai or a wide pan. Add and toast the tadka ingredients. Add and stir-fry the onions for about 2 minutes. Add the green beans, Indian beans and Lima beans. Cook, covered for about 5 minutes on medium heat. Beans will soften within 5 minutes by cooking in their own moisture, sort of like steam cooking. At this stage, stir in green chilli-coconut paste, salt and turmeric. Cover and cook on medium heat for another 5-10 minutes stirring in between. Serve hot with chapatis or with rice and dal.

3-bean curry with chapatis
3-bean curry with chapatis

More about Indian Bean Seeds, Papdi Lilva or Chikkudu Vittanalu - Here

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Green Beans, Lima Beans, Chikkudu Kaya (BroadBeans) (Tuesday May 30, 2006 at 1:17 pm- permalink)
Comments (25)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Four Seasons Farmers/Flea Market


Four Seasons Farmers and Flea Market, Youngstown, Ohio
(About six miles from my home in Boardman)


Boxes and Crates - Out of State Produce


Unloading the Produce


Shopping, Shopping


Flower Pots For Sale


Red Radish Bunches 3 for $1.25


Limes 6 for 1 Dollar


Hot and Fresh Kettle Popcorn - For the Ride Home


Fruits and Vegetables from Farmers Market - Pineapple, Cantaloupe, Grape Tomatoes, Beans, Bell Peppers, Red Radishes, Green Onions, Corn, Baby Red Potatoes and Limes
Total Money Spent - 12 dollars


Strawberries from Local Farms

This is our local Farmers Market in images, for Farmer’s Market Parade hosted by Melissa of Cooking Diva.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Zen (Personal) (Sunday May 28, 2006 at 8:26 pm- permalink)
Comments (26)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Pickled Cucumber

Crunchy Cucumbers
Sandwich Fillers and Crunchy Side Snack
Hothouse Cucumber Slices Pickled in Lime juice, Salt and Black Pepper

This is a simple version of cucumber pickle that I often prepare at home. I usually prefer long, smooth, thin skinned cucumbers for this pickle. Mainly because they taste great and I don’t have deal with thick, ugly wax coating that is common on ordinary cucumbers.

How to:

Cut one cucumber into thin rounds.
In a bowl, squeeze 2 or 3 cut limes. To the juice,
Add and mix salt and black pepper powder to taste or about ¼ teaspoon each.
Add and toss the cucumber slices to coat with juice.
Store in a clean jar. Stays fresh upto two weeks, when refrigerated.

Going to be busy for few days for Memorial Day Weekend. Have a great holiday or a neat weekend, my friends!

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Cucumbers (Thursday May 25, 2006 at 1:54 pm- permalink)
Comments (19)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

The Arisiupma trilogy (Guest Post by Janani)


Food blogging has opened a window for me to meet interesting and like-minded people who also share my passion and philosophy of cooking. Janani Srinivasan from Toronto is one such person. After reading her comments on some of my blogged recipes, I knew I found a friend and I had to ask her if she would be interested to share her family recipes on “Mahanandi”. She agreed enthusiastically and readily to my delight. Here she is, sharing her family’s treasured, traditional recipes in “The Arisiupma Trilogy”. Enjoy!
- Indira

My fondest childhood memories are of mealtimes at the home of my maternal grandparents where my grandmother- Annapurani in nature as in name- would whip up meal after magical meal prompting my late grandfather to often say in Sanskrit “Anna dhaata sukhi Bhava” (May the giver of rice be happy). If the story of a people’s deepest aspirations can be seen in their metaphor, then this poetic conflation of rice as food itself speaks volumes to the centrality of grain in the foodscapes of India’s many cultures.

One of the other remarkable features of the Indian subcontinent, is that depending on what filter or combination of these that you use- language, religion, culture, region, social identity, you could carve it up into a delightful array of unique variants of regional cuisines.

If I were to cite the major culinary influences that shape my own approach to cooking, I would pick out, as my example, my paternal grandmother Vathsala’s austere, methodical, cooking-with-what’s-on-hand-to minimize-waste? Kumbakonam Iyer style, with Annapurani’s elaborate, lavish, incredibly rich preparations shaped by her own life in Hyderabad and Bangalore; to my mother Jayanthi’s innovative style from her many travels, her tendency towards the fiery twists of her life in the Rayalseema region but always with a strong adherence to the authentic approach of her own paternal grandmother.

So when Indira asked me to guest blog, I could not think of a better tribute to my heritage and to the food grain that has sustained generations of my family, than the humble “Arisiuppma” with two of its popular variations “Thavalaadai” and “Pudikozhakattai”.

Ingredients:

(a) For the “Upma Odasal” or the cracked rice meal:
Rice- 1 cup (Using Brown basmati for this takes it to a whole new level of dense nutty chewy perfection but regular basmati or ay other rice especially par-boiled rice is quite acceptable and is the norm)
Urad Daal- 1 tsp
Toor Daal- 2 tsp
Dried red chilies- 4- 6 (depending on the level of spice tolerance)
Black peppercorns- 1 tsp
Cumin seeds- 1 tsp

Ingredients for Cracked Rice Meal

(b) Tadka or seasoning:
Mustard seeds- 1 tsp
Urad dal- 1 tsp
Few Curry leaves
Green chilies- 3 to 4, chopped finely into rounds
Ginger root- 1inch, finely chopped .
Fenugreek seeds- Just a tiny pinch (optional)
Asafoetida- a pinch (the extract of the solid version soaked in water is ideal but the powdered form is acceptable too)
Sunflower oil- 1 tbsp (It is normally used but if you have the gutsJ, coconut oil tadka will make this dish quite ethereal.)
(c) Garnish:
Freshly grated coconut a fistful (can be omitted if it’s not preferred or my paternal aunt’s variation is to substitute it with sauteed onions)
(d) Salt to taste

Tadka or Seasoning Ingredients

Procedure:

1 In a blender/food processor coarse grind the ingredients listed under “(a)” to a cracked wheat consistency.

2 In a wide-bottomed pan, heat the oil and do the tadka.

3 Once the seeds start to sizzle and splutter, add fresh water in the proportion 1: 3 rice meal and water.

4 Once the water starts to boil, add in the coarsely grinded “(a)” list of ingredients and mix well.

Now when I made it this time, I had to ensure that my pipeline was effective since I was making three dishes with the exact same ingredients. Typically, one would only make one of the three preparations at any given time.

Up to step 4 above is common to all 3 dishes. After this point, the procedure diverges for each preparation.

Pudikozhakattai (Steamed Cracked Rice Dumplings)

Pudikozhakattai (steamed cracked rice dumplings)

When the mixture is well mixed and the water is just absorbed, take it off the heat. Depending on your heat tolerance, try not to let it cool down too much. Work rapidly using some cold water to wet hands and roll it into balls. Steam for about 8-10 minutes till done. A special twist here is to bury a smidgeon of jaggery in the center of this so you stumble upon a heart of sweet goodness as a surprise while biting into it.

Thavaladai (Rice Lentil Croquets)

Thavaladai (Rice lentil croquets

After step 4, take it off the heat. Once it’s cooled down shape into patties and shallow fry on a griddle. Can be served with ketchup or any chutney if desired or just plain.

Arisiupma

Arisiupma

(Try as I might, I could not come up with a nifty English equivalent for this dish. Let’s hope this will enter the lexicon alongside the likes of Bulghur, Couscous and Cream of Wheat. )

Keep going from step 4 till the uppma is well done. To serve, especially for kids, a popular pairing is with some ghee and sugar. Pickle and yogurt is also a combination but mostly its just eaten plain and piping hot.

- Guest Post by Janani Srinivasan, Toronto
Jayasri Srinivasan - Ingredient lineups and picture arrangements
Dr.S.Ramachandran - Photographs

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Biyyamu (Rice), Zen (Personal), Basmati Rice, Sona Masuri Rice, Janani Srinivasan (Tuesday May 23, 2006 at 1:13 pm- permalink)
Comments (29)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Mango~Sesame Curry (Mamidi~nuvvula kura)

Before moving to US, we lived for about 2 years in Hyderabad, India. The capital city of my home state, Andhra Pradesh, lately known as Hi-Tech city, Hyderabad, has its own unique cuisine. A mishmash, a culinary amalgam influenced by people who migrated to this city from small villages, towns all over Andhra and from out of states on jobs, business and to work in political bureaucracy. Foodwise, you can get everything and anything there, almost:). Strong personalities and strong flavors are needed to survive in that city.

One such bold flavored recipe that I learned from a Hyderabad native, is this mango~sesame curry. Unripe mangoes are cooked in jaggery flavored sesame sauce. 3 strong flavors, unbeatable taste, perfect side dish for subtly bland naans/chapatis and puris.

Jaggery, Roasted Sesame Seeds, Unripe Mango
Jaggery, Roasted Sesame Seeds, Unripe Mango ~ Three Strong Flavors

Recipe:

2 green, unripe mangoes - peeled, seed removed and cubed into bite sized pieces
1 cup sesame seeds - lightly roasted and powdered
¼ cup of jaggery - powdered
1 teaspoon of each - red chilli powder, salt and turmeric
For popu or tadka:
1 teaspoon of peanut oil
½ teaspoon of each mustard seeds, cumin and few curry leaves.

1 Heat peanut oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add and toast cumin, mustard seeds, curry leaves.

2 Add mango cubes to the pan, stir in sesame powder, jaggery, chilli powder, salt and turmeric. Add about 2 cups of water and mix thoroughly.

3 Cover with lid and cook on medium heat for about 15 to 20 minutes, until the mango pieces soften and the sesame sauce comes together into medium-thick mass. Have a taste and adjust the salt, sweet, spicy levels to your taste. Cook for another couple of minutes and turn off the heat.

Serve warm with chapatis/naans or with puris and enjoy this unique curry of zinging taste.

Mango sesame curry with puris
Mango-Sesame Curry with Puris

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Sesame Seeds, Jaggery, Mamidikaya (Green Mango) (Monday May 22, 2006 at 6:20 pm- permalink)
Comments (19)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Menthi ~ From Pot to Plate

Menthi, Methi, Fenugreek:

Picking from the Planter
Plucking Menthi from the Planter

Cutting into Small Pieces
Cutting Menthi

Fresh, Flavorful Meal on a Sunday ~
Menthi Dal Mixed with Rice, and Mango Pickle
Menthi Dal Mixed with Rice, & Mango Pickle

This is my contribution to “Green Blog Project” started and hosted by my favorite newbie food blogger, lovely and talented, an avid gardener from Zone-10, Inji Pennu of Ginger and Mango.

How Menthi Started - Here
Menthi Dal Recipe - Here

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Zen (Personal), Indian Kitchen, Menthi Kura(Fenugreek) (Sunday May 21, 2006 at 4:47 pm- permalink)
Comments (14)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Weekend Cat Blogging

Kittaya Napping
Napping Kittaya

Checkout Curious Kiri checking out a Possum and all the other cute kitties of food blogging world at Clare’s Eat Stuff.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Kittaya (Saturday May 20, 2006 at 4:17 pm- permalink)
Comments (11)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Ridgegourd Chutney (Beerakaya Pacchadi)

It’s been raining hard for the past one week here. I’d have grown a sprout from my head if I were a seed. It’s been so much and non-stop drizzle. With all this wet rainy weather, I wasn’t doing much cooking for the past couple of days and yesterday, ridge gourd came to my rescue.

I have never tasted a ridge gourd dish that I didn’t like. Be it a simple homely dal with toordal, or cooked in coconut, milk or in tomato sauce… I like all versions of ridge gourd preparations. “Superlative” says SH of Saffron Hut and I totally agree with her. It is like potato, easily likable and adaptable to any type of recipe. This chutney I am writing about today is one such recipe.

Some vegetables suit for chutneys and some don’t. Of all the vegetable based chutneys, ridge gourd chutney is the best in my view. The sweetness of the ridge gourd perfectly complements the hot and sour flavors of onion, chillies and tamarind. The chutney will be a perfect side dish with hot rice and dal, or for tortilla chips dip. If you like the taste of ridge gourd and if you haven’t tried chutney with it, then you have to try this recipe. This is A+, I tell you!

Ridge gourd, Onion, Green chillies and Tamarind

Recipe:

1 Ridge gourd (beerakaya) - Peel the outer ridges, wash and cut into big chunks
1 medium sized onion - cut into big chunks
6-8 small green chillies - each cut into two or three pieces
1 garlic clove - peeled and halved
½ tablespoon of freshly squeezed tamarind juice
¼ teaspoon of salt or to taste
1 teaspoon of peanut oil
A skillet and a mortal and pestle or a blender

1 Heat peanut oil in an iron skillet on medium-high heat.

2 Add and sauté the ridge gourd, onion, green chillies and garlic until light brown. Turn off the heat and wait for 10 minutes to cool.

3 Take them in mortar, add tamarind and salt. Using the pestle make a coarse paste or you could do that in a blender, but use ‘pulse’ button few times.

4 Remove into a cup and serve with rice/chapatis or as a veggie dip for chips.


Ridge gourd chutney, Dal and Rice (Beera kaya pacchadi mariyu pappu annam) ~ My Comfort Food

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Amma & Authentic Andhra, Beera kaaya(Ridge Gourd) (Friday May 19, 2006 at 11:15 am- permalink)
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The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Ravish the Radish-2 (Radish-Potato Curry)

Yesterday, I was browsing through the nutritional guidebook - Wellness Foods AtoZ of UC Berkeley. The authors mentioned in that book, that radish-the root vegetable, has less than 25 calories per cup and supplies impressive amount of vitamin-C: 29 percent of the daily requirement in 1 cup of red radish slices. Not bad, right.

When it comes to cooking these red ping-pong ball sized beauties of spring, I have a strict dietary preferences. I don’t like them overcooked or raw. Overcooking usually results in no flavor and raw means the smell. Simple 5-minute stir-fry is a perfect way to enjoy their crisp flavor without the loss of nutrients and is the most common way I prefer. Because I do buy them almost every weekend during springtime from local farmers market, I had to come up with different ways to prepare this completely new vegetable (We don’t get this veggie at Nandyala). One way I make it more enticing is stir-frying it with baby potatoes and baby lima beans. Good and easy recipe with delicious crunchy results.

Recipe:

12 to 15 fresh red radishes - ends trimmed and sliced into medium thick rounds
6 to 8 baby potatoes - Boiled in water until just tender and quartered into 4 chunks
½ cup of baby lima beans - or any kind of beans like chickpeas/nuts of your liking
1 onion - finely chopped
seasoning
1 teaspoon of red chilli-garlic powder
½ teaspoon of each - turmeric and salt (or to taste)
For popu or tadka
1 teaspoon of peanut oil
½ teaspoon of cumin, mustard seeds, minced garlic and few curry leaves.

1 Do the tadka - Heat one teaspoon of peanut oil and add and toast tadka ingredients - cumin, mustard seeds, minced garlic and curry leaves.

2 Add and sauté onions, radishes and baby lima beans for few minutes on medium heat, stirring in-between, until they reach the crunchy/soft consistency you desire.

3 Stir in quartered potatoes and the seasoning (chilli-garlic powder, turmeric and salt). Cook for a further couple of minutes.

4 Serve hot with chapatis or with rice and dal.


Radish-Potato Curry Salad with chapatis and tomato dal


Ravish the radish - One

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Radish, Baby Potatoes (Thursday May 18, 2006 at 1:30 pm- permalink)
Comments (28)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Pulao with Red Radish and Fresh Corn

Red Radishes and Fresh Corn From the Farmers Market

We love going to the local farmers/flea market on Sundays during spring and summer here. They are the only natural atmosphere, which come close resembling to the vegetable markets of my hometown, Nandyala, India.

Back home at Nandyala, most of the produce sold in markets usually comes from neighboring villages or from the farms around the town. Whereas here in this small city in the USA, where we live now, most of the produce comes in boxes and crates from Oregon and California, even at the local ‘Farmers Market’. Thriving small farms are rare and few, it seems, surprising; after all this is midwest, the heartland of America.

But there are a couple of stalls that sell limited variety of produce and fruits, which are truly locally grown and from real soil. We usually buy whatever they had available that week from them. Along with some fruits and veggies, yesterday I purchased radishes, green onions, corn and I prepared pulao for lunch today with them.

Fresh corn, green onions and red radishes, they all have a very delicate flavor and they don’t take well to overcooking, particularly red radishes. Pulao is perfect recipe for them, lightly sauté and mix them with cooked basmati rice, sprinkle some limejuice, viola… delicious colorful meal with fresh spring flavors will be ready.

Pulao with Aloo Kurma

Recipe:
Cook:
1cup basmati rice in 2 cups of water
Wash, cut and chop:
1 bunch of fresh radishes - quartered
1 bunch of green onions - finely chopped
1 fresh corn - husked and kernels chopped
1 red onion and 4 green chillies - finely sliced lengthwise
1 fistful of fresh green peas - shelled from pods
Prepare or Take Out From the Pantry and Fridge:
1 teaspoon of ginger-garlic-cilantro paste (GGC Paste)
1 teaspoon of clove-cinnamon- cumin-coriander seed powder (CCCC Powder)
½ teaspoon of salt or to taste
Few sprigs of fresh cilantro - finely chopped to garnish
Lemon/lime juice to sprinkle
Sauté, Mix and Serve:
Heat 2 teaspoons of peanut oil or ghee in a big pan or kadai on medium heat. Add the GGC Paste and CCCC powder, sauté for few minutes, until they leave the raw smell. Continuously stir and take care not to burn the masala. Add all the veggies listed above and sauté for few minutes, until they soften. Add the cooked basmati rice to this sautéed veggie mixture. Sprinkle in salt and finely chopped cilantro. Mix thoroughly. Serve hot with a curry and a cup of yogurt for a light meal.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Radish, Biyyamu (Rice), Basmati Rice, Corn - Fresh (Monday May 15, 2006 at 3:51 pm- permalink)
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Tomato Plants

Tomato Plants from my balcony garden
From My Veranda Container Garden ~ Cherry and Grape Tomato Plants (2 each)

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Zen (Personal) (Sunday May 14, 2006 at 9:13 pm- permalink)
Comments (16)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Weekend This & That

Rose from my balcony garden
For All You Mothers Out There Who Visit My Blog and To My Dear Sisters ~ Happy Mother’s Day!

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Big, beautiful and just perfect to prepare authentic chutneys in 5 minutes - 13 dollar pestle and mortar from Marshalls. What a deal!

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Republican Congress wants to censor the free Internet and curtail the free flow of information. It’s going to be a big blow to all of us bloggers and leads to demise of web sites like ours. This coming Tuesday, some food bloggers are going to blog on this issue. Pay attention because it’d affect us all. - Check this link for detailed information on this topic.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Zen (Personal) (Saturday May 13, 2006 at 8:28 pm- permalink)
Comments (10)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Indian Broad Bean Stir-fry (Chikkudukaya Kura)

My next-door neighbor often complains, “We don’t eat enough greens like you guys do.” Some of my friends often complain, “We are not having enough protein in our diet.”

Usually they turn the blame on to their native culture and say that their American or Indian food doesn’t have enough of something or the other. See, for them, the fault is not with their eating habits; rather it is of the culture/cuisine. It’s always a surprise to me, when I hear that Indian food (particularly vegetarian) doesn’t have sufficient protein content. It is a big myth for me. People often have a mental picture in their minds, which shows only meat products when they think of protein. Since in our Indian food we don’t consume as much meat as our American counterparts do, we tend to think that we are not getting sufficient protein.

Different types of lentils, legumes, some fresh vegetables (like the one below) contain high quality protein and so do chicken, egg and milk. Poor cooking/eating habits or lack of nutritional information about the ingredients that we use might be the main reason for complaining I think. Though we studied about these nutritional values in our school days, we tend to forget them very easily, it seems.

As I am writing these posts in my blog, I am learning a lot more about the nutritional values of the vegetables. One very important vegetable that is rich in minerals and protein is ‘Indian Broad bean’ or ‘Chikkudu‘. This is one of the very tasty vegetables available for us, here in US and the recipe shown below is a simple and traditional way of making a stir-fry curry with it.

Indian Broad beans (Chikkudu kaya)
Indian Broad Beans, Chikkudu Kaya

Recipe:
15 to 20 Indian Broad beans - ends trimmed and cut or teared into 1 inch pieces.
1 medium sized onion - finely sliced
4 green chillies and 1 teaspoon of coconut - made into smooth paste
¼ teaspoon of turmeric
½ teaspoon of salt or to taste
For popu or tadka:
1 tsp of peanut oil
1 tsp each of - mustard seeds, cumin, minced garlic and few curry leaves

Bring a pot half filled with water to a boil. When the water is at dancing stage with bubbles and everything, add and cook the cut broad beans pieces for two minutes. That’s it, don’t overcook and drain them into a colander. If the broad beans are very tender, then you can skip this step and proceed like below.

Heat peanut oil in a sauté pan. Add and toast the popu ingredients. Add and sauté the finely chopped onion for few minutes until they soften. Stir in green chilli-coconut paste and turmeric. Sauté for another 2 minutes. Add the broad bean pieces, stir in salt. Cover and cook the curry on medium-low for about 5 minutes or until the pieces are tender. Serve hot with rice or with chapati.

Chikkudu kaya Podi Kura with Chapatis
Indian Broad Bean Stir-fry with Chapati ~ Our simple Meal Today

Recipe source:Amma
Indian broad beans are avialable in Indian grocery shops here in US, almost year round.
Indian broad beans in Peanut Sauce - Recipe

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Amma & Authentic Andhra, Chikkudu Kaya (BroadBeans) (Thursday May 11, 2006 at 4:54 pm- permalink)
Comments (29)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Mango Shrikhand (Aamrakhand)

Manasa of San Jose, CA, a reader of this blog, sent me “Mango Shrikhand” recipe along with photo for JFI-Mango event. She wrote to me:

“I make Mango Shrikhand quite frequently and when I saw the “Jihva for Mangoes” event on Mahanandi, it occurred to me that I should also share this with everyone. This is one of my well tried out recipes. My whole family loves it. I even make it sugar-free (replace sugar with splenda and it still tastes fantastic).”

Manasa’s Recipe For Mango Shrikhand:
(to serve 2-4 people)

Mango pulp (sweetened kesar mango pulp) – ½ cup
Plain yogurt - 1 cup
Sour Cream (low-fat is good too) - 1 cup
Finely chopped walnuts and cashews - ½ cup (together)
Sugar (or Splenda) - ½ cup
(Less sugar is okay as the dish gets sweetened from Mango)
Cardamom powder - ½ tsp
Saffron soaked in 2 tbsp warm milk - a pinch.

1. Drain the water from the yogurt by tying it in a soft muslin cloth and hang it over the sink for at least 2 hrs.
2. Once all the water is drained from the yogurt, it automatically gets a creamy texture.
3. Mix the yogurt and sour cream thoroughly in a serving dish.
4. Mix in the mango pulp and sugar.
5. Check the sweetness and the flavor; add more sugar or mango pulp if needed.
6. Ensure that the texture of the dish remains creamy and not watery.
7. Mix in the chopped nuts, cardamom powder, and soaked saffron along with the 2 tbsp milk.
8. After mixing thoroughly, chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours before serving.

Mango Shrikhand By Manasa
Mango Shrikhand (Aamrakhand) By Manasa

Thanks Manasa for taking part in JFI-Mango event and for this fabulous mango dessert recipe.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Mango, Yogurt (Wednesday May 10, 2006 at 11:02 am- permalink)
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