Mahanandi

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

Artisan Food with Daikon Radish


Daikon and Chana Dal (Mullangi mariyu Sanaga pappu)

A tablespoon of grated radish eaten daily for several weeks has long been recommended by traditional healers in the East as treatment for Kidney and bladder stones, and for sinusitis. Low in calories and an all around detoxifier, radishes are excellent for us health wise.

The following is my mother’s recipe in which the white radish also known as Daikon, Mooli or Mullangi, is cooked with chana dal and potatoes, and seasoned with dahi mirchi tadka. The recipe is easy to prepare and incredibly tasty. Great when eaten with rice, roti, pasta or with millet.


White Radish Subzi with Pita Bread and Aachar Avocado ~ Brunch Today

Recipe Details:

Artisan Food: Daikon Subzi (Mullangi Kura)
Ingredients: Daikon, Potato, Chana Dal and Tadka Ingredients
Skill level: Easy. From Novice to Expert
Labels: Traditional-India, Vegan, And Wholesome Food
Price: $2.00
Format: PDF

Artisan Food with Daikon Radish Recipe PDF


Buy Now

How it Works: After payment via Paypal, PDF will be emailed to you to download the recipe. For any questions about the recipe or the download process, please email me at mailmahanandi@gmail.com .

****************

Artisan Food Aim and Purpose:

“Artisan Food ~ Revenue through Recipes” program aims to raise money, however small the amount, to support the children at Swami School at Nandyala. This will also lend a sense of purpose to my food blogging, and help me feel like I am accomplishing something through my activity in this Web world.

Previously in Artisan Food:

Artisan Photo Gallery

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Radish, Chana Dal, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Artisan Food (Monday May 12, 2008 at 12:01 pm- permalink)
Comments (3)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Bottle Gourd with Chana Dal

Sorakaya Sanagabedala Kura

Bottle Gourd (Sorakaya, Dudhi, Lauki, Opo Squash)

I love this 20-minute preparation very much. The pale green beauty, Sorakaya is simply seasoned to show off its supple texture and slight sweet flavor. Like many recipes from my home, Nandyala, the flavoring is daal. And in this dish it’s the tasty and healthy chana dal. Not only traditional, recipes like these are also waist-friendly and stamina building. They will be part of my diet and featured frequently at Mahanandi, as I start to prepare for my trip to India late this summer.

Cook this kura with young and fresh looking sorakaya for best results.

Recipe:

Soak quarter-cup chana dal in water for at least 30 minutes.

Peel the skin, and cut the sorakaya (bottle gourd) into half-inch cubes. (I added 3 cups.)

In a pot, add and heat a teaspoon of oil. Add a pinch each cumin and mustard seeds. And also a pinch of asafoetida (hing, inguva). When the mustard seeds start to pop, add the rehydrated chana dal. Stir-fry for about two minutes.

Then add the bottle gourd cubes. Sprinkle ¼ teaspoon turmeric and ½ teaspoon red chilli powder. Also about quarter cup of water. Mix. Cook, covered on medium-heat, until the white bottle gourd cubes turn to translucent pearl like.

Stir in quarter teaspoon salt and a teaspoon each - jaggery and coconut gratings. Mix and cook for few more minutes. Serve immediately. (Sorakaya Kura is a wet preparation, but with no sauce or gravy.)

To serve, heat a chapati. Place a big spoonful of kura in the middle and spread, leaving about an inch border. Fold and roll to wrap. Eat.
(Sorakaya kura is good with chapati only, and not that good with rice.)

Health Labels:
Vegan, Waist-friendly
Sorakaya (bottle gourd): Pitta pacifying vegetable
Chana dal: Known for its anti-diabetic properties
Spices-cumin, mustard seeds, hing, turmeric - aid digestion and well-being

Bottle Gourd (Sorakaya, Dudhi, Lauki, Opo Squash)
Sorakaya Kura Wrapped in Chapati, with Steamed Carrots on the Side ~ Meal Today

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Chana Dal, Indian Vegetables, Sorakaya(Dudhi,Lauki), Amma & Authentic Andhra (Monday March 10, 2008 at 5:34 pm- permalink)
Comments (3)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Dalma

Chari Phutana and Dried Red Chillies
Chillies and Chari Phutana (Cumin, Fennel, Fenugreek and Mustard Seeds)

Dalma is a popular Oriya comfort food, and prepared with dal-vegetable combination. In dalma, the demure dal becomes dashing, due to a special spice-mix called chari phutana. You know how sunshine can cure winter blues? The chari phutana is the sunshine for this dal-dalma. While preparing Dalma, I realized the reason for the recent negative outburst on my website. Winter blues! No wonder people are cranky. I can’t wait for the spring and sunshine to get here.

Dalma recipe is courtesy of doctor, food writer and nutritional expert, the lovely Nandita of Saffron Trial. You can find her recipe and my photos in January edition of Men’s Health India magazine. I would like to thank Nandita, and Tithi Sarkar, the sub-editor of Men’s Health India for contacting and giving me this photo opportunity.

Dalma with Ruby Red Grapefruits
Dalma with Rice, and Ruby Red Grapefruit Juice ~ to Ease the Winter Blues

~ Indira

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Potato, Toor Dal, Chana Dal, Arati Kaaya (Plantain), Vankaya (Brinjal) (Friday February 8, 2008 at 4:44 pm- permalink)
Comments (3)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Chana Dal~Amaranth Curry from Nandyala

Sanagaballa Thotakura :


Fresh Amaranth Leaves (Red Spinach, Thotakura)

Regional Cuisines of India (RCI), a fresh food blogging event is started by Lakshmik of Veggie Cuisine last month. I loved this event idea very much. Great opportunity for those of us who would like to move away from restaurant created regional cuisine constraints. For example, stereotypes always associate dosa, sambar, green beans-coconut curry/poriyal and laddus with South India. The four southern sister states of India, share these. They are the Kohinoors, I agree but explore further, the chance to write/learn about the khajana of gems that sustain individual home plates are plenty. Certain recipes are much hard to find than others and that location is different for every enthusiast. You never quite know where you will find that great regional gem recipe that speaks to you. That’s why I am attracted to this concept very much. For this month, RCI is celebrating Andhra Cuisine and is hosted by lovely Latha of Masala Magic.

Although I am from Andhra Pradesh, India, I don’t dare to speak for all Andhra vasi. What can I do is to share my family recipes from Nandyala. My mother and father, my in-laws, they are all from this town and surrounding villages. The relations we have in this town go back at least 4 generations. The roots are deep. Nandyala may be a tiny town in Andhra but it sparkles like an electric dream at my blog, Mahanandi. Vijay and I are the first ones in the family who moved so far away from Nandyala. I think, that explains why the pull is so strong for us.

RCI provides me another chance to share Nandyala bounty. One special recipe is Chana dal-Amaranth Curry. The ingredients are all from around here (Seattle), but the method is from Nandyala. Fresh amaranth leaves and chana dal saut�ed with onions, grated coconut and green chillies make a deeply satisfying curry that tastes great with sorghum roti or with chapatis. Very tasty, very much Nandyala! Another must try for amaranth fans.


Chopped Amaranth Leaves and Chana Dal (Pre soaked in water)

Recipe:

I bunch fresh amaranth - washed and finely chopped, about 2 quarts
Half cup chana dal - soaked in water for about 2 hours
1 jumbo red onion - finely chopped
2 tablespoons of coconut and 5 green chillies - grind to smooth

Popu or tadka ingredients -
1 tablespoon peanut oil
¼ teaspoon minced garlic, cumin and mustard seeds

Heat oil in a wide skillet. Add and toast garlic, cumin and mustard seeds.

Add and saute onion and chana dal on medium heat for about 5 minutes. Onions become soft and chana dal turns to crisp.

At this stage, stir in the chopped amaranth leaves, along with coconut-green chilli paste, turmeric. Mix once and cook on medium-high, covered for couple of minutes until the leaves wilt. Increase the heat. Remove the lid and cook another couple of minutes until the water evaporates from the skillet. Sprinkle salt in the end, mix and serve hot.

The soft nutty chana dal plus potent amaranth makes a great combination and tastes quite good when eaten with sorghum roti or with chapatis.


Sanagaballa Thotakura with Chapati (Chana Dal Amaranth Curry with Chapati)
~ A recipe from Nandyala to Latha’s RCI Andhra Cuisine Event

Recipe Source: Amma

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Chana Dal, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Thotakura (Amaranth) (Tuesday May 8, 2007 at 10:37 pm- permalink)
Comments (27)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Palakura Pullakura (Spinach~Mango Dal)

I mentioned few times here on Mahanandi that I do not know much about the cuisine of Telangana, one of the three regional cuisines of Andhra. One reader picked up on that and mailed me her family recipes from Telangana region. It is surprising and very encouraging to see such passionate sharing of family heirlooms. Thanks Vijaya! Among her recipes, Palakura Pullakura with spinach and unripe mango caught my attention. This recipe is different from the preparations to which I am accustomed. No toor dal, but moong dal and chana dal used together. I have never heard of this combination before. I wanted to try this for JFI-WBB: Greens and made it for lunch.

To my delight, it came out exceptionally well. The combination of moong dal and chana dal worked. Who knew? The pleasant, mild taste of spinach balances and complements the sour and strong taste of raw mango. I can certainly give an A+ to this recipe. Long live Telangana cuisine, may it be part of Andhra Pradesh forever!

Spinach and Unripe Green Mango
Spinach and Unripe Green Mango

Recipe:

Half cup each - moong dal and chana dal
One or about 1 cup - unripe mango pieces
One bunch spinach - washed and chopped
10 to 12 green chillies (small Indian variety) - finely chopped
¼ tsp turmeric
½ tsp salt

For popu or tadka:
1 tablespoon oil
¼ tsp each - chopped garlic, dried red chilli pieces, curry leaves, hing, cumin and mustard seeds

I roasted the moong dal first to light brown color, because I prefer the roasted taste to plain. Then took them in a pressure cooker. Added chana dal and washed the dals together once.

Next, I added the unripe mango pieces, spinach, green chillies and turmeric along with about 4 cups of water to pressure cooker. Covered and cooked for one whistle. The recipe instructions say do not cook more than one whistle, maintain chana dal integrity. So to do that, I turned off the heat after one whistle and waited for the valve pressure to get released. Once the valve pressure cleared, I opened the lid and added salt. Mixed and Mashed the dal lightly.

Time for the final step - popu or tadka. Heated the oil in a pan and toasted the popu ingredients listed above one after another in the order written. When mustard seeds start to jump around, I added the mashed dal to the popu and mixed everything thoroughly.

I also fried some papadams, sundried yogurt chillies and pumpkin vadiyams (courtesy of my blog neighbor Mythili of Vindu who returned from India trip recently.) to accompany the dal and rice. Served hot with rice and little bit of ghee, and a cup of yogurt on the side, our meal today was heartwarming and fulfilling. Thanks Vijaya for this family recipe and thanks Mythili for the tasty vadiyams. Here is to the power of sharing!


Palakura Pullakura with rice and ghee with a Side Snack of Sundried yogurt Chillies and Pumpkin Fritters

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Spinach, Chana Dal, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Moong Dal (Washed), Mamidikaya (Green Mango) (Tuesday April 3, 2007 at 11:08 pm- permalink)
Comments (39)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Jaggery~Coconut Puffs


Jaggery-Coconut Puffs

Many thanks to lovely Kay for hosting this month’s Jihva. Being a first time mother of two month old baby girl, she could have easily said “no” to very demanding and time consuming work of event hosting, which she booked 7 months ago. I asked her to see if she’d take a break, but she insisted to do it. I restect people who keep their word without missing a beat. I also commend Kay for her dedication towards Jihva and also all the participants for their enthusiastic support with interesting entries. To make this event hosting as smooth as possible for Kay, I would greatly appreciate if you could send your entries with the details she requested (blog name, entry URL and images etc), so that she could do the recap of the event in short time. Thank you.

Kay also requested for new jaggery recipes. So here is one - Jaggery-Coconut puffs. Homemade puff pastry and sweet jaggery coconut filling. I borrowed the recipe idea from Fethiye of Yogurt land. I have changed the recipe little bit. Instead of egg in dough, I have added mashed ripe banana as I was preparing the puffs for naivedyam (puja offering) and also used ghee. Preparation was easy, and the end result was smooth silky puffs with sweet filling. We liked them a lot and they are definitely going to join my cherished recipe list. Thanks Fethiye for a great recipe idea, thanks Kay for inspiring me to experiment.


Dough, melted ghee, jaggery-coconut filling and jaggery-chana dal purnam filling

Recipe:
for 12 to 14 sweet puffs

For filling:

I’ve prepared two different fillings.
1: jaggery-coconut lauju: Follow coconut burfi recipe. Replace sugar with jaggery and stop cooking before the sweet reaches burfi stage. I have also added sesame seeds to the lauju.
2: jaggery-chana dal purnam : like we do for Bhakshalu (bobbatlu, puran poli, holige). Recipe is here. Small quantity, just half cup each is enough and can be done in 30 minutes with some preplanning.

For dough:

3 cups of all purpose flour
1 cup of warm milk
1 ripe banana - mashed smoothly
¼ cup of oil
1 teaspoon each - sugar, salt and cardamom powder
1 teaspoon of active dry yeast, stirred in 1 T of warm water

Take them all in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Prepare the dough like we do for chapatis, sprinkling warm water if necessary. Without giving any rest period, divide the dough into 8 rounds. Roll out small salad plate shaped rounds.

Apply general coating of ghee or melted butter to each one, on one side and layer them. (See the photo below).

Roll again these 8 rounds into one big dinner plate shaped circle of about 10 inches in diameter and ¼ inch thick. The size is really big, and I had to roll out on my kitchen countertop. Divide and cut this circle into 12 to 14 triangles of equal size.

Top the wide edge of each portion with 1 tablespoon of filling. Start rolling from the wide edge down to the tip. Curve in tips to close the gap on the sides. Now the rolling part is over, give the dough a break and allow to rest for about 15 minutes so that yeast can work its magic.

Arrange them nearly in rows on a greased baking sheet, leaving a little space between pieces. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 F for about 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Serve warm.


Rolling out the rounds and arranging one over another after applying ghee


Placing the jaggery-coconut filling and rolling the wedges to croissant shape


After a 15 minute rest period, the puffs are ready for baking


Hot Jaggery-Coconut Puffs for Birthday Girl Kay and my entry to JFI-Jaggery.


Recipe adapted from Yogurt Land
Flour Choice: King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Mitai, All-Purpose Flour(Maida), Chana Dal, Jaggery, Coconut (Fresh) (Friday December 1, 2006 at 7:25 pm- permalink)
Comments (33)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Paruppu Usli with Gawar Beans

As winter approaches, the weather is turning to cool but the political scene here in Seattle is warming up to hot.

Midterm elections, where the locals would elect members to both Senate and House of Congress are in November and the candidates of both parties are in full campaign mode. It’s not only war of words and but this is also a gender war. On one side, that is on Democratic Party side, two pretty ladies. One is who looks like a confident, capable person for the Senate and for the House, the candidate name is Darcy Burner. She looks like someone from a stupor of mind numbing desk job one day got real mad at the current state of affairs and decided to run for the office. I really like her; she looks very professional, intelligent face and cute nerdy haircut. On the other side for Republican Party, two guys. For Senate, a guy who looks like a used car sales man trying to make a quick lemony sale, that kind of cunning personality and for the House - this guy looks like someone who took steroids in teenage years, off-putting, muscle/no brain kind of type.

There is an ad war going on between these candidates on local TV programs including cable. From what I have noticed so far, Democratic Party ads usually mention what they are going to do for the people of Washington state and country. Where as Republican Party ads are mostly about how “illegals” and Mexicans are going to take away the money, benefits from US or bad people are coming to our shores, boo… be very afraid and hide in your closet always, but vote for us in November. Sickening to watch that kind of sick, hate crime inducing ads from this party. That’s what going on in Seattle airwaves currently, thought some of you politics buffs would like to know.

When it comes to my kitchen, what’s going on is, I have prepared Paruppu usli with some leftover gawar beans of last week. This is another way I like to prepare these beans and the recipe inspiration is from this paruppu usli curry I have prepared last year adapting Shammy’s recipe. Gawar beans (from party of vegetables) and chana dal (protein party) are steamed and then stir-fried with onions and seasoning. End result is a pleasant, nutty taste that would be great with rice and sambhar/rasam/majjiga pulusu combination.


Steam-cooked Gawar Beans, Grinded Chana dal- Green Chilli Mixture, Onion and Curry Leaves

Recipe:

Gawar Beans (Mattikayalu): Washed, ends stringed and cut into one-inch pieces. Steam-cooked or blanched for few minutes to tender - about 2 cups

Chana dal: 1 cup, soaked in 2 cups of water (to soften the dal) for about 2 hours. Water drained and the chana dal is grinded to coarse mixture along with 10 green chillies, one-inch fresh ginger and one teaspoon of salt in a food processor.

Onion: Big one, finely chopped to small pieces

Popu or tadka ingredients along with two teaspoons of peanut oil


Sauteing the Curry

In a big, wide skillet, heat peanut oil. Do the popu or tadka (toasting curry leaves, dried red chilli pieces, cumin and mustard seeds - in that order).

To this tadka, add and saute onions and also the grinded chana dal-chilli mixture. On medium heat, constantly stirring, saute the mixture for about 10 to 15 minutes, until the raw smell of chana dal goes.

At this stage, add the steam-cooked gawar beans. Add turmeric and salt to taste also a pinch of asafoetida. Mix and cook by covering the pan for about another 10 minutes, occasionally stirring.

This curry tastes great when served hot and I have been preparing it as a side dish to rice and sambhar. Good combination.


Paruppu Usli with Gawar Beans, Okra Sambhar and Rice

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Chana Dal, Indian Vegetables, Matti Kaayalu(clusterbeans) (Monday October 23, 2006 at 11:48 am- permalink)
Comments (24)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Sanagalu (Kala Chana, Black Chickpeas)


One Chickpea (Chana, Choleye, Sanaga) ~ Different Forms
For This Week’s Indian Kitchen

Green fresh chana - Shelled from pods (and available frozen in Indian grocery shops).

Black chickpeas (Kala Chana) - Result of green chana dried under the sun.

Chana Dal (Bengal Gram, Sanaga Pappu) - Prepared by splitting the black chickpeas and removing the brownish-black outer skins.

Roasted Chana Dal (Dalia, Pappulu) - Prepared by roasting black chickpeas in special kilns and then splitting and removing the brownish-black outer skins.

double_curve.gif

Contributions From Fellow Bloggers For Indian Kitchen Series

Kavvam (Buttermilk Churner)
Kavvam (Buttermilk Churner) ~ To “Cool Those Summers”, from Yadbhavishya

Boondhi Maker
Boondhi Strainers and Makers ~ To Prepare Boondhi Laddu, from Foodnewbie

Thanks Vidyanath and Sudha for sending me these photos for Indian Kitchen series.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Chana Dal, Indian Ingredients, Indian Kitchen, Indian Utensils, Chana Dal-Roasted (Dalia), Chickpeas-Black (Sunday July 23, 2006 at 3:08 pm- permalink)
Comments (6)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Colorful Idly with Carrots & Chana Dal

Back home, a breakfast is still a breakfast. It is not brunch, lunch or supper. Breakfast items are few, and everyday one of them is prepared and eaten by 9 AM. My mother never uttered the words - “I’m not feeling well today and not making any breakfast for you”. As a grown up, living in a silent world with plenty of time to reflect back, now I realise, my mother like me, must had several reasons to slack off, if she wanted to. But she never did. I am sure many of you can relate to what I am talking about. That kind of devotion was given to us when we were children. This is the reason why I often mention ‘amma (mother)’ as recipe source. If I have the courtesy to write a cookbook author’s name as recipe source for a blogged recipe, why shouldn’t I return the same courtesy to amma, from whom I learned most of my cooking from.

Colorful idly with carrots and chana dal aka masala idly is one of her recipes. Finely grated carrots and chana dal along with green chillies and cumin etc. are added to the leftover idly batter for a next day morning breakfast. Imagine the taste of upma, and these idlies almost taste like that. Steam cooked in round shape, they are a pleasure when served hot with chutney and sambar. Though they are a breakfast item back home, here I often make them on a weekend for brunch, lunch or for supper.

Idly plates filled with idly batter - ready for steaming

Recipe:
This is same as idly preparation except that we add bunch of other ingredients and change the lilly white, cloud like plain idlies into colorful, somewhat dense masala idlies.

(for 16 idlies)
3 cups of Idly batter
(urad dal and rice ravva(cream of rice) in 1:2 ratio, soaked, grind into smooth batter and kept overnight for fermentation)
Ingredients to add to idly batter
1 cup of grated carrot (1 big carrot)
¼ cup of chana dal (soaked in water for atleast an hour)
¼ cup of coarsely crushed, roasted peanuts or cashews
¼ cup of finely chopped cilantro
2 to 4 finely chopped or minced green chillies
1 teaspoon of cumin and few curry leaves
¼ teaspoon of salt or to taste

Mix the ingredients with idly batter thoroughly. Fill the round impressions of idly plates with this batter. Place the idly stand in an idly cooker and steam cook them for about 20 minutes or until the batter sets completely. Remove the idly stand from the cooker, run a spoon under each impression and separate the cooked idlies from the impressions. Serve them hot with peanut or coconut chutney and sambhar.

Idlies with veggies, served with peanut chutney, and shallot sambhar
Masala idlies with peanut chutney and shallot sambhar

For more detailed recipe of idly, about idly stand, idly plates and idly cooker etc., - click here

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Carrots, Chana Dal, Urad Dal (Washed), Rice Ravva (Cream of Rice) (Tuesday April 11, 2006 at 1:54 pm- permalink)
Comments (25)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

13. Chana Dal Payasam (Sanaga Pappu Payasam)

Yesterday, on Ugadi, the weather was perfect with temperatures around 70 F. It felt like spring and Andhra weather. To celebrate this perfect day on Ugadi, I prepared chana dal payasam (sanaga pappu payasam) for puja.

Payasam is the most common type of dessert served in homes across south India. Prepared with basic ingredients and following a simple method, Payasam- the liquidy dessert, is a people pleaser. Usually the base is a thickened milk and sugar or jaggery syrup. The solid component varies - protein in the form of chana dal or moong dal are added. Or by adding carbos like rice, vermicelli, sabudana and nuts like almonds; different types of payasams are prepared. Real easy and the outcome is always sweet mouthfuls, it is a favorite among children and adults all alike. Here is the recipe for one of my favorite payasams:

Recipe:
(For two)

1 cup chana dal
¼ cup sabudana (Sago, Saggu Biyyam)
separately, soak them in water for at least two hours. Presoaking both chana dal and sabudana (sago) reduces the cooking time, considerably.
For sweet syrup
1 cup of powdered jaggery or sugar
3 cups of milk
Flavoring
1 tablespoon of ghee
¼ cup of cashews and golden raisins
4 cardamom pods - seeds finely powdered

Chana dal, Sabudana (Sago), Milk and Jaggery - Ingredients for Payasam

1. Take chana dal and one cup each of milk and water in a pressure-cooker. Pressure-cook the dal until one whistle, just to soften the chana dal. Do not disintegrate the dal; take care not to over cook.

2. Meanwhile in a thick bottomed, big vessel, take half cup of water. Add sugar or powdered jaggery. Stir and cook, until the sugar/jaggery melts. When the syrup starts to thicken, add the soaked sabudana, and 2 cups of milk. Cook them on medium heat for at least 15 minutes, stirring in between. To this milk-sugar-sabudana syrup, add the contents of the pressure cooker - chana dal and the milky liquid it is cooked. Stir and check the sweetness level, add sugar if needed. Simmer on medium heat, Uncovered, stirring occasionally for another 15 minutes or until it reaches consistency/thickness, you desire. Keep in mind payasam further thickens on cooling.

3. When all this is happening, heat a spoonful of ghee in a small pan. Add and toast - first cashews, then golden raisins until light brown. Add these toasted things along with ghee, to the simmering payasam.

4. Finally stir in powdered cardamom, simmer another 5 minutes. Switch off the heat, cover the pot with a lid and let it sit for at least half an hour. Serve warm or cold.

Golden Raisins fried in ghee, Cashews, Soaked Chana dal, Payasam (Sanaga pappu Payasam)
Chana dal payasam (Sanaga Pappu Payasam) ~ For this week’s Indian sweets 101

Variations:
I also prepare the same payasam with chana dal(bengal gram) without adding the sabudana(sago).
Sometimes, I also add fine semolina instead of sabudana to chana dal payasam.
Toasted fresh coconut gratings are also added along with cashews and golden raisins for that rich nutty sweetness.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Chana Dal, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Naivedyam(Festival Sweets), Milk, Indian Sweets 101 (Friday March 31, 2006 at 1:15 pm- permalink)
Comments (31)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Bagara Baingan (Nune Vankaya Kura)

Do you remember my post about stuffed brinjal curry with peanuts and sesame seeds? In that post, I also mentioned different kinds of stuffing that I know. Here is another type of stuffed brinjal curry, I am calling it by Hindi name - ‘Bagara Baingan’ - This time with purple brinjals, stuffing made with dals and fresh coconut and cooked in a pan. The stuffing doesn’t taste very good when pressure-cooked. So for this kind, I make it in a pan, like how they do it back home.

Fresh Coconut, tamarind, purple brinjals, roasted dried red chillies, cashews and mix of chana dal, urad dal, coriander seeds, fenugreek seeds, cumin  - ingredients for Bagare Baingan
Recipe:

Small, fresh, young, blemish free brinjals - 8 to 12

Roasting for stuffing and gravy:

Chana dal and urad dal - quarter cup each
Black peppercorns and cloves - 4 to 6 each
Dried red chillies - 6 to 8
Cumin, coriander seeds & methi seeds - 1 teaspoon each
Roast them in an iron skillet till golden. Mix them with
Fresh or dried coconut - 1/2 cup
Tamarind juice and powdered jaggery - 1 tablespoon each
Salt - 1/2 teaspoon
My addition: One fistful of roasted cashews
Ginger garlic paste and roasted red onions can be added to this mix.

Make a smooth paste of all the above ingredients without adding any water. Divide it into two portions. One for stuffing the brinjals and the other portion is for making the gravy.
Purple brinjals stuffed with roasted dal- coconut-cashew paste
Stuffing:

1. Wash to clean up the wax coating on brinjals. Neatly cut and remove the stem of each brinjal.
2. Starting at opposite side of stem, make a plus (+) shaped cut towards the stem side, but not all the way through. (See the photo above, to get an idea)
3. Gently separating the brinjal petals, fill the narrow gap with the prepared paste.

Cooking:

1. In a big, wide, flat pan - heat one tablespoon of peanut oil, do the popu or tadka (toasting one teaspoon each of mustard seeds, cumin, curry leaves and minced garlic).
2. Arrange the brinjals - stuffing side up, neatly in rows. Cover and cook them in their own moisture for about 15 to 20 minutes on medium heat or until they soften. The younger the brinjals, the faster they cook.
3. Once you are sure that brinjals are tender and cooked, remove them carefully without disturbing shape onto a serving dish.
4. Pour the remaining paste that was kept aside to the pan. Mix it with half glass of water. Sprinkle in turmeric and adjust the salt, spice (red chilli), sour (tamarind) and sugar to your taste. Cook for another 10 to 15 minutes on low medium heat, until the gravy thickens.
5. Now put the brinjals back into the thickened gravy. Cook for another couple of minutes.

With rice or roti, this curry is a party favorite and a crowd pleaser.
 Stuffed Brinjal Curry (Bagare baingan, Nune vankaya Kura) with rice

Bagara Baingan with Rice ~ Our dinner today.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Chana Dal, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Cashews, Coconut (Fresh), Vankaya (Brinjal), Urad Dal (Washed) (Thursday December 29, 2005 at 9:56 pm- permalink)
Comments (35)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Bhakshala Rasam (Bobbatla Chaaru)

As much as we like bhakshalu/puran poli on festival days, what we always look forward to is the tasty rasam, called bhakshala chaaru.

Bhakshala Chaaru is prepared with drained water from boiled chana dal of bhakshalu (Bobbatlu/puran poli). This leftover, rich in taste, chana dal water is simmered with tamarind juice and jaggery. A seasoning of tadka. That’s it. Prepared in small quantity on festival days, this tasty and nutritious bhakshala rasam is to die for. Saying this is a cliche, but I miss my mother whenever I make this recipe, because she prepares the best, the tastiest rasam I have ever had.

Water Drained from Boiled Chana Dal for Bhakshalu/Puran Poli
Drained Water from Chana dal of Bhakshalu

Recipe:

2 cups-drained water of boiled chanadal
Half onion, thinly sliced lengthwise (Optional)
2 tablespoons of tamarind juice
2 tablespoons of jaggery - powdered
¼ tsp of red chilli powder
¼ tsp of salt, or to taste
Pinch of turmeric
1 cup of water

For popu or tadka -
1 teaspoon oil or ghee
¼ tsp of mustard seeds, cumin, hing & curry leaves

Preparation:

Heat one teaspoon of oil in a heavy pot to medium high. Add the mustard, cumin seeds, hing and curry leaves. When the seeds begin to pop, add thinly sliced onions and saute them for few minutes to soft. This rasam is also prepared without onions.

Add the chana dal water, tamarind juice, jaggery, red chilli powder, turmeric and salt. Add water and stir. Bring this mixture to boil. Reduce the heat and let it simmer, uncovered for about 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve hot or cold with rice.

Bhakshala Rasam/chaaru with rice
Bhakshala Rasam with Rice - a Raayalaseema Sweet and Spicy Special Chaaru.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Chana Dal, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Jaggery (Wednesday October 19, 2005 at 10:28 pm- permalink)
Comments (6)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Bhakshalu (Bobbatlu, Puran Poli)

Chana Dal (Sanaga pappu), Jaggery, Ghee, Gasa Gasaalu (Poppy Seeds, Kash Kash), and Cardamom

Ingredients:

For Purnam
One cup chana dal(sanaga pappu)
One to one and half cups of jaggery- powdered
One tablespoon of poppy seeds(gasa gasaalu)
Two cardamom pods, seeds powdered
Purnam Wrap
One cup all purpose flour (maida)
Quarter cup of ghee
Half cup of water

Dough made with All purpose flour(Maida) and ghee Cooked Chanadal on a towel

Preparation:

Step 1:(Two hours before)

Prepare soft, pliable dough with all purpose flour, water and ghee(1 or 2 tablespoons).

Pressure cook chana dal in plenty of water until one whistle. Do not Overcook the dal. The cooked dal must be rigidly soft and not broken. Drain using a colander. (We make a tasty rasam with this dal water called bhakshala rasam.) Spread out the cooked chana dal on a clean cotton cloth or on paper towels, for atleast one hour, so that all the moisture is absorbed from them.

Purnam - Chanadal, Jaggery, Cardamom paste Purnam on maida wrap on a aluminium sheet

Step 2:(one hour before)

Purnam: Using a food processor/blender make a paste of cooked and now completely dried chana dal and powdered jaggery, cardamom powder. Do not add water. The purnam should come out as firm ball. In case if it is more on the runny side or soggy, cook it on stove top on medium-low heat for about 5 to 10 minutes, continuously stirring and let it cool. This will definitely make the purnam firmer and that is what we want consistency-wise for this recipe.

Take the dough on a flat surface, add ghee and knead it for few minutes then punch with your fist few times. Pour ghee knead and punch, do these steps for at least 5 to 10 minutes. All this is to make the dough more pliable and when pulled, it should stretch without breaking.

Making Bobbatlu/Puran Poli Making Bobbatlu/PuranPoli on Iron griddle

Step 3:(Show time)

Divide the dough into marble sized balls.

On aluminum foil or on the back of a steel plate (traditionally banana leaf is used), apply liberal amounts ghee and roll out each ball into a small round using a rolling pin or with your hand. Keep a lime sized Purnam in the middle and cover it by bringing the edges together. Dip your fingers in oil and using them, flatten the ball, starting at the edges, gradually pressing towards the center, into a thin, flat, circular shape.

Lay the foil on the griddle and carefully using a spatula, separate the bhaksham from the foil onto the warm(not hot) iron griddle. Fry or cook it on medium-low heat, applying liberal amounts of ghee, till golden (14 carat gold), on both sides. Sprinkle some poppy seeds on each side, keep on the griddle for few more minutes and remove.

Naivedyam is ready.

Bhakshalu / Bobbatlu / Puran Poli / Holige

Serve them with ghee, chitrannam and some bajjis. Festival Feast is ready!

Recipe Source: Family - Amma & Attamma

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in All-Purpose Flour(Maida), Chana Dal, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Jaggery, Naivedyam(Festival Sweets), Indian Sweets 101 (Thursday October 13, 2005 at 4:58 pm- permalink)
Comments (40)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Undrallu & Kudumulu

During festival times, the sugar of choice at our home for Naivedyam is jaggery.

Jaggery - the pure, wholesome and traditional sweetener of India is made out of raw sugarcane juice by slowly simmering it in big pans until all the water is evaporated. The final solid product is then poured into moulds. The complete process is 100% chemical-free, prepared in natural way and no animal parts (bones) are used or added at any stage. This process is unlike the commercial sugar manufacturing, where cane juice is subjected to a potpourri of chemicals as sulfur dioxide, lime, phosphoric acid, bleaching agents & viscosity reducers.

How do I know all this? Well, some of our relatives cultivate sugarcane and produce jaggery in small scale. They do that in the fields after harvesting the sugarcane. It is quite an event with all the relatives and friends come to help and taste. The thing I always remember is the smell. The sweet smell of boiling sugarcane follows you forever.

It is the ancient wisdom and is now scientifically proven that jaggery is known for its many medicinal benefits. One thing I know is jaggery is rich in Iron. In India, people who know, even doctors advise anaemics and pregnant women to take jaggery daily to increase their hemoglobin levels.

What can I say about the taste of jaggery- there is always the sweet taste but there is something more. The taste is not a mind numbing sweetness but more subtle, much more flavorful and makes us want more. Its sweetness is quite different from that of commercial sugar, brown sugar or even molasses. Because it contains the minerals and vitamins inherently present in sugarcane juice.

In addition to using it for traditional sweets of festival times, like Undrallu, Jaggery is my sweetener of choice always, for ragi malt, vegetable curries, rasam, occasionally for tea & coffee. Compare to commercial sugar, it is not that expensive. You can buy a 10-pound block of jaggery for about 5 to 8 dollars in an Indian grocery shop, here in US.

Jaggery I brought from India
Jaggery from India

Vinayaka Chavati Festival Sweet - Undrallu

Undrallu is a sweet, especially prepared on Vinayaka Chavithi festival. They are made with jaggery and chana dal then wrapped in dough and deep-fried in oil or ghee. The tradition is we have to prepare 9 varieties of undrallu with different fillings for this festival. My mother prepares 9 varieties for puja whenever we girls visit home. She has a saint like patience and great time management. You see we have to prepare all varities on the day of festival, by afternoon while on fasting. At least the person who does the puja and cooking must be on fasting till the puja is done. Family members would taste the festival specials only after the puja and naivedyam are done. Our customs dictate that the first offerings on festivals and special occasions must be to God, a sign of respect.

Recipe:
(For two)

For Purnam:

One cup - chana dal
One cup jaggery (pounded into tiny pieces)
6 cardamom pods, seeds separated and powdered

Wash chana dal and take them in a pressure cooker. Add the cardamom and about one cup water. Mix and pressure cook to 3 whistles, till the chana dal is firmly-soft. There should be no water left in pressure cooker. and we want a tight cooked chana dal. If there is excessive water, drain the dal using a colander and then spread the cooked dal on paper towels or on a cotton cloth to remove the moisture and to make them firm.

In a food processor (mixer), or in a stone mortar, take the cooked chana dal. Add jaggery and grind to smooth. The end product must be solid and it has to hold the shape. Make baby’s fist sized small rounds. My mother also dips the rounds in coconut gratings.

This is Purnam.

Chana dal, Jaggery, Cardamom. Cooked and combined into a paste called purnam or puran.
Chana Dal, Jaggery and Cardamom ~ Pressure-cooked, Mashed and Made to Small Rounds called Purnam

Preparing the Dough:

There are two kinds of wraps for the Purnam.

1. Urad dal and rice flour wrap called chovi. For it, take quarter cup of urad dal and soak them in water overnight. First thing in the morning, drain water and grind the dal in a blender to smooth adding very little water. Remove to a cup and half cup of rice flour. Mix them together thoroughly. Keep it covered for about 2 to 3 hours. This is called chovi. Purnam balls are dipped in this batter and fried in oil or ghee. Tasty and good.

2. Maida (all purpose flour) wrap: My mother’s method and I prefer this wrap.
Take one cup all-purpose flour (maida) in a bowl. Make a well in the center and add about half cup water. Mix and make a firm dough. Sprinkle about 2 tablespoons ghee and gently knead the dough, until it becomes very soft and pliable. Keep it covered for about 2 to 3 hours. Preparing the maida dough is the first thing I do in the kitchen on festival day morning.

Preparing Undrallu step1 Preparing Undrallu step2

When you are ready with purnam:
Take out and knead the dough again adding ghee for about 5 minutes.
Divide the dough into marble sized rounds.
Roll out each one into a small round using a rolling pin or with hand, thin at the edges and thick in the middle.
Place a lemon sized Purnam in the middle and cover it by bringing the edges together. Place them on a plate and cover with a wet cloth, to prevent drying out.
Repeat the procedure for all the dough rounds with the purnam.

Once you are done, place a kadai on stove-top. Add and heat the oil or ghee for deep-frying.
Gently drop the rounds and deep fry them to pale gold. Offer them to God first, then enjoy.

I prepared them in two shapes, the round ones are called undrallu, and the other two are called Kudumulu in Telugu.

Undrallu or Boorelu(Round Ones), Kudumulu (The Other Two)

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in All-Purpose Flour(Maida), Chana Dal, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Jaggery, Naivedyam(Festival Sweets), Indian Sweets 101 (Thursday September 8, 2005 at 1:30 pm- permalink)
Comments (24)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org

Paruppu Usili with Green Beans

Paruppu Usili or Lentil Curry, even though it’s an old classic from South India, I never made this at home before. Shammi’s post tempted me to try it. I liked the ingredients and nutritional aspects of this curry and also the quick way it can be made.

I followed Shammi’s recipe mostly.Toor dal-Chana dal, red chilli paste and in the background finely chopped green beans and onions - Ingredients for Paruppu Usili

-Soaked two fistfuls each of toor dal and chana dal overnight.

-Grinded the dals with half tsp of salt and six dry red chillies and pinch of hing into coarse matter, without adding any water.
-Fresh green beans are the vegetable I chose to make Parappu Usli.
-I chopped beans, one medium sized onion and one garlic clove finely.

Did the popu (frying mustard seeds, cumin and curry leaves in 1 tsp of oil), then added onions and garlic, sautéed them for few minutes. Then added the coarsely grounded dal paste and green beans. Cooked them covered on low medium heat for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pinch of turmeric and salt to my taste, with these final touches and few more minutes on stove - my new favorite curry was ready for chapatis.

Chapati with Paruppu Usili made of Green beans (Roti and Lentil Curry with Green Beans)

Thanks Shammi for showing this classic recipe.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Toor Dal, Green Beans, Chana Dal (Friday July 8, 2005 at 6:56 pm- permalink)
Comments (21)

The New Home of Mahanandi: www.themahanandi.org