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Mar 13, 2015

Peanut Coconut Chutney Kadalai Chutney Moongphali Chutney

There are variety of chutney that is made and served for Idli and Dosa. Sharing with you today another version of chutney such Chutney using "Rosated" peanuts / Groundnuts / Moongphali / Shengdana / Verkadalai/Kappalandi.

Roasted groundnut is used to replace coconut in traditional recipes. In this recipe, I am  using combo of groundnut and coconut.  Roasted peanuts is very healthy for heart. If you are looking for low glycemic index food this chutney is very good (Just replace coconut completely and use roasted peanuts). If you don't like garlic, just exclude that form your ingredient list.

A QUICK AND EASY Yummilicious CHUTNEY recipe!!

 Ingredients :-
  1. Roasted Groundnut - 1/2 cup
  2. Grated coconut   - 1/4 cup
  3. Green Chillies - 2 Nos. (or as per your preference)
  4. Garlic Pod - 1 No. (optional)
  5. Curry Leaves - 5 Nos.
  6. Salt to taste
  7. Water as requried
  • For tempering :-
  1. Oil for tempering - 3 tsp
  2. Mustard seeds  - 1 tsp
Procedure  :-
  • Put ingredients 1 to 6 in a blender and adding water grind to a smooth paste. 
  • You can add the water as per your required consistency to make it thick or thin or medium.
  • In a tempering pan, heat oil and add mustard seeds. After they splutter add it to the chutney and mix well.
  • Yummy Nutty Chutney is ready!

Mar 10, 2015

Tomato Rice Thakkali Sadam Tamatar Chaval

When I think of tomato rice, i was taken way back to my early working days when I used to buy food parcel from a mess on days when I don't carry my lunch box.  The word 'mess' has a special touch than a hotel because of its homely food.  

I remember those days....brownish green parcel was lying at a corner of the lunch table waiting to be opened ..... A look at the pack was enough to kindle my gastric juice .... I eagerly looked forward to lunch time.  I carefully unwound the thread and opened the crispy leaf parcel.....aha! colorful tomato rice packed in Patravali (Thayal Ilai in tamil) and the lightly oily layered inside of the leaf and the aroma it has given to the hot and freshly packed tomato rice is just enough to push me into the absolute foodie bliss....
Patravali or thayyal ilai is an eco friendly packing item made of leaves. The dried leaves of Sal or Jackfruit or Mandarai (still looking for the right english name. so please bear with me. it is a tamil name) are stitched together with the help of thin and tiny wooden sticks. Different regions in the country use different tree leaves for this purpose. They were used by sages and for offering and disbtributing prashad at the temples. We still can see these leaves in use in the country side.  Now with the help of machines these leaves are moulded into plate and bowl shape, are available in the market.

This is how Patravali - leaf plate looks. Got it from google search...

Let us get into tomato rice making..... this recipe is how we make it at home.

Ingredients :-

  1. Cooked Rice - 1.5 Cups
  2. Tomato - 1 Big
  3. Onion - 1 Medium (optional)
  4. Ginger - 1/2" piece  (optional)
  5. Curry leaves - 1 sprig
  6. Green Chilli - 1 No.
  7. Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
  8. Red Chilli Powder - as per taste
  9. Asafoetida powder - 1 Pinch
  10. Sesame Oil for tempering - 1 tbsp
  11. Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
  12. Channa dal - 1 tsp (split bengal gram)
  13.  Salt to taste
  14. A tsp of ghee
  15. Jaggery - 1/4 tsp
  16. Coriander leaves finely chopped - 1 tbsp (optional)
Procedure :

  •  Finely chop tomato, onion, ginger, few curry leaves, Green chilli.
  •  Heat oil, add mustard seeds. After they start spluttering, add channa dal. When the dal turns golden brown in color, add the curry leaves, finely chopped curry leaves, onion, ginger, green chillies and saute' till onion turns pink.
  • Now add the finely chopped tomato and add little salt so that tomatoes gets cooked quickly and turns mushy.
  • Now add the turmeric powder, red chilli powder, asafoetida powder and required salt and very little jaggery (to enhance the taste) mix well and fry for one minute.

  •  Switch off the flame, add chopped coriander leaves, ghee and the cooked rice. Gently mix well.
  • Yummy tomato rice is ready to serve!  

Side dish : fried fryums, papad and curd makes a good combo.  I relish the tomato rice just plain :-)

There are few items mentioned optional. I sometimes add them, sometimes exclude any one or few of them to get variation in taste and flavour of this tomato rice.  If you want it to be more tangy, accordingly increase the measure for chopped tomato.

Mar 5, 2015

Venpongal / Pongal / Southindian Kichidi


Here I am again, after a long break......  with a yummy dish... A colleague of mine asked for this recipe. I noticed i have not made a post on Pongal making........

Pongal - falls into Breakfast Menu of Tamizh Nadu. It is one of my favourite. I love to have Hot pongal and Meduvada with chutney and sambar followed by a cup of Filter Coffee to complete the ritual!

It is a form of kichidi made in the state of Tamizh Nadu.  This is salty version hence the name 'Ven Pongal' (ven means white in tamizh). The sweet version is known as 'Sakkarai Pongal' which is made using jaggery hence little brown in color. The famous Harvest festival of southern india during Makarasankaranti - called 'Pongal' when the Salt as well as Sweet version is offered to the Sun God. Pongal also means rising... i.e. when you cook rice, when the water start boiling it rise and flow out.... it is considered auspicious on pongal day ... it is believed that "like the overflowing water happiness and prosperity should overflow in one's life".

Let's go ahead with the pongal making. It is very easy to make this dish. 

Ingredients :-

  1. Rice - 1 Cup
  2. Moong Dal - 1/4 Cup (split and deskinned green gram)
  3. Water - 3.5 Cups
  4. Milk - 1/2 Cup (optional)
  5. Salt to taste

For temepering :

  1. Curry leaves - 1 Sprig
  2. Black Peppercorns - 2 tsp
  3. Cumin Seeds - 1.5 tsp
  4. Asafoetida - less than 1/4 tsp
  5. Cashew Nut - Broken - 2 tbsp (optional)
  6. Ghee - 1 tbsp
  7. Sesame oil - 1 tbsp

Procedure :-

  •   Lightly dry roast the Moong Dal (split deskinned green gram) till nice aroma comes. Color should not change.
  • Add to the rice and wash it well. 
  • Add Water and Milk to it. mix. 
  • Crush the pepper and Cumin seeds coarsely using a mortal and pestle (this is to make the aroma blend well with the pongal. If you don't have one, no problem, crush the black pepper corns very lightly so that it will not burst while tempering)
  • Now heat a tempering pan, add sesame oil. When it is heated, add the coarsely crushed black pepper, cumin seeds, curry leaves, asafoetida, cashew nuts. Roast till cashew turn golden in color.
  • Add this tempering to the rice dal mix.
  • Add salt to taste.
  • Pressure cook till it turns mushy. (I never let the whistle come. When the first whistle is about to come, i lower the flame and cook for 15 minutes. Even the vessel and the cooker stays clean).
  • Once done, mix it well when the pongal is still hot.
  • Relish it with coconut chutney / sambar.

I enjoy the pongal even without any side dish.

I remember the yummy pongal prashad we get at vishnu temples in the month of Margazhi. This month which falls during winter season air is cold in the morning and the hot hot  prashad just slips in spreading the warmth and soothe the hungry stomach. Makes the early waking and visit to temple in the cold morning an interesting one!

It is an excellent Food and is very good to consume when you have cold / cough / sore throat. In monsoon, it is apt to have a bowl of hot pongal followed by a cup of coffee watching the rains pitter patter near the window sil......

I am not getting much leisure hours now but still i have very good memories of my favourite time and pongal breakfast is one such gastronomically nostalgic moment! - to cherish for the life time.

Here is a hot cup of virtual Filter Kaapi (coffee) for you......


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