Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Zucchini Blossoms Fritters / Bajji

Hi All! Its been a while since I updated my blog. I was just busy with my routine and too lazy these days. Today, my husband asked me in the morning, "why don't you talk about updates from your blog and your blogging friends?" I usually tell my husband about the blogs that I find interesting, nice articles, nice recipes, I also show him pics of the dishes etc.. I haven't updated myself with the blog for some time. So  I guess he missed my updates. I was really happy to see him ask me such a question because usually whenever I tell him about my blog or updates he would just say "ok" ! I always thought these things never interest him. But today when he asked that question is when I understood he actually paid attention to my updates. Anyways, I will try and be sincere to my blog which I keep telling all the time but this time, I hope to be more frequent in posting my recipes. 

Coming to this bajji, I saw long time back in Now Serving's blog about these fritters. She has also explained nicely how to distinguish the male and female flowers. I would like to add one point to hers. The male flowers are just flowers that comes from a long stalk. The fruit bearing ones (female flowers) have the fruit just below the flower which can be easy identified. We use the male flowers for this bajji.

I tried these fritters and it came out really well. My husband loved it too. The original recipe is here. I added few ingredients and omitted the ones that I din't have. So my version goes here.. 

Zucchini Blossoms - about 5-6 that i had from my garden washed thoroughly 
Gram Flour / Besan Flour - 3 tbsp
Rice Flour - 1 tbsp for crispness
Salt - to taste
Asafoetida - a pinch
Red Chilli powder - 1 tsp or to taste
Turmeric powder - a pinch


Mix gram flour, rice flour, salt, chilli powder, asafoetida and turmeric with water and bring it to a nice thin batter ( similar to pancake /dosa batter) 

Dip the blossoms in the batter and deep fry in oil. 

Serve with hot sauce or some chutney. 
Sending this to Bookmarked Recipes hosted by Priya and started by Aipi 

See you soon! 

Saturday, July 16, 2011


My husband and I went to a restaurant here in San Diego for a buffet. Being vegetarians, we knew our options would be limited but still we wanted to give it a try since its a very famous restaurant here in San Diego for Sunday Brunches. So there we tasted this butternut squash soup and I fell in love with this soup immediately. It was so rich and creamy. I can never forget the taste of it ever. We really loved the soup. Not only soup, we had so many vegetarian options as well. But this was super hit. So I decided to make this at home but never got a chance till now. When I went to my market this week for my veggies, I found butternut squash and I picked it immediately.  So, today, I am presenting to you all my fav butternut squash soup. 


Butternut squash - 1/2 of medium sized squash - 1.25 cups diced chunks
Onion - 1 medium
Carrots - 2 chopped
Garlic - 2 cloves (optional)
Butter - 1 tbsp
Salt - to taste 
Red Pepper flakes - 1 tsp
Black pepper powder - to taste
Water/ Veggie broth - 1 cup
Heavy cream - 3 tbsp or to taste


In a pan, melt butter and add 2 cloves of garlic. When it turns golden brown take it out and toss it away. In that same pan, add onions and saute till it becomes caramelized. 

Add carrots and squash and saute for about a min and add water/ veggie broth just enough to cover the squash, salt and cover it. Let it simmer for about 20 mins. 
Make sure the squash and carrots are cooked well and is tender. If not let it simmer for another 10 mins till it becomes tender (You should be able to mash the squash with a fork).

Take the veggies in a blender and blend it to a smooth paste. 

Transfer the contents back to the pan with the stock and add spices according to needs. 

Let it cook for couple of mins and add about 3 tbsp heavy cream. 

The color of the soup is similar to color of carrot but since I added cream, the color is lighter than the usual. 

Serve hot with garlic bread and relish the soup! 
Sending this to Deb' Souper Sundays

Friday, July 15, 2011


This month Srivalli sent us the recipe of Punjabi Mango Pickle from Simran's Blog for ICC. It was really exciting for me because I don't make pickle so much. I always thought it is a process to make pickle and I assumed that I might not be so good like our grand moms or mom. But as soon as I saw this recipe, I was so excited to try it as soon as I could. It was very different. I am so used to the south Indian type of pickle. This one was a change for us.


Raw Mangoes - 5 kgs
Mustard oil - 250 ml
Salt - 700 grams
Methi / Fenugreek seeds - 100 grams 
Kalonji / Nigella seeds - 50 grams 
Saunf / Fennel Seeds - 100 grams
Turmeric powder - 100 grams 
Whole Peppercorns - 50 grams 
Sugar - 2 tbsp 

But we got the quantity reduced by Srivalli which is below

Raw Mangoes - 1/2 kgs
Mustard oil - 50 ml
Salt - 70 grams
Methi / Fenugreek seeds - 10 grams 
Kalonji / Nigella seeds - 5 grams 
Saunf / Fennel Seeds - 10grams
Turmeric powder - 10grams 
Whole Peppercorns - 5grams 
Sugar - 1/2 tsp


Wash mangoes and cut into small cubes and dry it under sun for 2-3 hours. 
Keep creamic/glass bowl dry and ready.
In the bowl, add  all the following whole spices - kalonji, fenugreek seeds, pepper, salt, sugar, turmeric and mix well. 
Transfer it to another ceramic jar and keep in the sun for another day. 
Add mustard oil to cover the mangoes. 
The flavors are well brought out if it is left in the jar for about 15 days. 
Shake the jar everyday for 15 days. 

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


I always wanted to send in recipes for the Bookmarked Recipes but somehow I fail in my attempt. The other main thing is, though I do send recipes to the event now and then, I always thought I must try Aipi's recipes and send it to her event so that it will be added fun and a simple way to make  my blog friend feel nice :-) So finally, the day came and beginning of this week I was looking at her blog to see what I could try. I am a pasta fan and so is my husband. But too bored of the regular white and red sauces mixed in it. So this penne in spicy pepper sauce grabbed my attention. Yesterday, I made all arrangement, bought necessary grocery and made this recipe. We both really enjoyed our dinner so much. I loved the spicy sauce ( I made it little bit more spicy) with basil flavor... It tasted sooo good. I am really happy that I am posting this recipe for her event and I wish and pray that I should be able to send in entries to all my blogging friends events.  Without any delay, I shall now give you the recipe.

The original recipe is here. I followed the exact same recipe with smaller proportion for just the two of us.


Red Bell Pepper - 1 chopped roughly
Garlic - 2 cloves
Tandoori Masala - 1 tsp
Walnuts - Less than 1/4 cup chopped
Red Chilli flakes - to taste
Salt - to taste
Basil - 2 tbsp chopped 
Olive Oil - 2 tbsp
Veggies - own choice - i used carrots, zucchini and squash - 1/2 cup chopped
Penne Pasta - 1 cup


Cook the pasta and set aside. 

In a pan, heat oil and saute red bell pepper and garlic until tender. Blend them in a blender with walnuts, basil, tandoori masala. Grind it to a smooth paste. 

In a pan, heat another tbsp of oil and saute onion and other squash till they become tender. Mix in the ground paste and let it cook for about a minute or two until it blends well with veggies. Add salt according to taste. 

Now stir in the pasta and mix well and let it cook for another minute or two till the sauce mixes well. 

Serve hot with garlic bread. 

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Kala Channa Sundal/ Black Chick Pea Salad

My husband and I love this type of sundal. I try to make sundal  often to balance our proteinn intake. This is really simple and you can just have it as a salad or as side dish to rice. I usually try to sprout it for more fiber but today I dint really have time to let it sprout so I just made this sundal. 


Black Chickpea/ Kala channa - 1 cup soaked overnight
Oil - 1 tbsp
Salt - to taste
Coconut - 1 -2 tbsp grated
Asafoetida - a pinch
Mustard - 1 tsp
Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp


Cook chickpea ( with some salt )separately and leave it aside. 

In a pan, heat oil and add mustard. when it splutters, add cumin seeds and asafoetida. Add the cooked chickpea and saute for about a min. Taste and check if you need more salt. Add accordingly. 
Mix in the grated coconut and turn off heat. Serve hot. 
Sending this to Shoba's Cook it Healthy and also to Taste of Pearl City's Anyone can cook series

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Radish Leaves Paruppu Usili

We all are so used to the regular veggies for our paruppu usili. This is a different one. I was talking to my mom about these fresh leaves from my garden. She then said that even the leaves of radish are edible which I never knew. Later she gave me an idea of making paruppu usili with these leaves rather than the usual keerai sambar. So I tried this today and it came out really well. I just had handful of leaves so I got just the cup above full of paruppu usili. What ever said and done, it is always special when it is grown in your own garden. We really relished this for our lunch. It was so great to eat our home grown veggies. I used these radishes for my salad along with some cherry tomatoes ( home grown ). 

Nutritional Benefits:

Channa dal and toor dal are rich in protein. 
Radish leaves are said to be rich in Vit C content, calcium and protein. 


Radish Leaves - Handful (basically its leaves of a bunch of small red radishes)
Channa dhal - 2 tbsp (Soaked for about 4 hrs)
Toor Dhal - 2 tbsp (Soaked for about 4 hrs)
Red Chilii - 2
Oil - 1 tbsp
Asafoetida - a pinch
Salt - to taste
Mustard - 1 tsp
Urad dhal - 1 tsp
Turmeric - a pinch


Grind soaked toor dhal along with channa dhal, red chili, asafoetida, turmeric, salt into a paste. Add just sufficient water to make it to a paste. 
Heat a pan and add oil. When hot enough add mustard seeds. When splutters, add urad dhal and asafoetida. When it turns golden brown, add the groung paste and let it cook. Sprinke water when necessary to let it cook. Cover it with lid for about couple of mins till it cooks well. 

Add the chopped radish leaves and start to saute the mixture untill the dhal mixture becomes crumbly and does not stick to the pan. By then these leaves will also be cooked. Add salt if necessary. 
The dish is ready. Serve it with sambar rice or just mix with hot rice and relish. 

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Simple Salad With Home Grown Veggies

We were so excited to see our crops grow. The best part is when you see them give the vegetable. Believe me! Its such a great experience and feeling of accomplishment when you get fruits from your garden. We were so thrilled to see our harvest today. Let me take you through it. 

Some Cherry tomatoes and radishes


Few Fresh Basil and Mint Leaves


Can we call it a perfect HOME MADE SALAD?????  I squeezed some lime juice and salt and pepper. We wanted to relish every bit of the vegetable so we ate it raw. I din't want to disguise it in any form or curry or gravy just to bring out the fresh taste of the veggies. It tasted so good. We were fully satisfied with all our efforts in growing these.  

I made another dish with radish leaves. Will be posting it soon. Till then you all take care!
Sending this to Deb's Souper Sunday's

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Spicy Pakoda

My husband was working from home and as you know we feel hungry when we stay at home. So he wanted to eat pakodas. I am used to making pakodas according to my recipe book. This time I wanted to try something different. So as I was browsing internet, I found Vah Chef's pakodas. I tried the exact same way and it came out really tasty. I always felt my pakodas were not that spicy but this one was so good. My husband doesn't eat spicy food so much but he loved this dish. Since I took the exact same recipe, I am just copying the link here . The only thing is I dint have curry leaves and cilantro according to the video. So my recipe excludes those ingredients. 

Sending this to US Masala's Bookmarked recipes hosted by Priya of Mharo Rajasthan's Recipes

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Jackfruit Seeds Masala

My mom used to make it back in India and we loved this dish. I have actually been eating jack fruits here but haven't really tried to make this dish at home with the seeds. I bought jack fruit from a local store in San Diego and I collected the seeds from the fruit. This time I wanted to make this dish with the seeds. I asked my mom for the recipe and I made this dish. It turned out very good. My husband also liked it. It is a mix of spicy and tangy taste. So you can never dislike this dish. I just have very few seeds. I had bought already cut jack fruit and so I had about 15 seeds only. So i managed to make this dish with these seeds. They were also really small seeds. So we were actually fighting for the dish. Had I known that this would happen I would have bought more . It happens you see :-) Next time I am going to buy more of it so that I can collect more seeds and make sufficient quantity so that we don't fight  ;-)

These seeds are good source of protien which I just read here


Jack fruit Seeds - 15 (I had only 15 :-( )
Shallot - 1 cut lengthwise
Tomato sauce - 2 - tbsp
Salt to taste
Red chilli powder - 1tsp
Turmeric - a pinch
Oil - 1 tbsp


Cook the jack fruit seeds separately. I cooked it along with rice in pressure cooker for 3 whistles and it was perfectly cooked. Remove the skin from the seeds and cut it lengthwise into half or 4 pieces depending on the size. 

Heat oil in a pan. Add onions. Saute till it caramelizes. Then add turmeric, red chilli powder and the seeds. Saute it till the spices blend well with the seeds. Add salt and mix well. 

Fry for about 3-4 mins and add tomato sauce and mix well for another 2 mins. 

When the seeds are well mixed with the spices and sauce, remove and serve with rice or roti. 

Take care and catch you soon. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Coconut Rice

Hi Friends! Its been a while since I posted something. I hope you are all doing good. I am becoming lazy these days and that's the only reason I can think of  for not taking care of my blog. My laziness has affected my cooking too. I haven't been making anything great at home these days but for regular sambar and some curry. Today, when I took pictures of this coconut rice, I realized that I am so lazy and I better do something about it. My sweet husband's line " Take it easy today. Make something simple", made me take advantage and not really make interesting dishes. My poor husband has been so patient and quite. But I better wake up and do something before his sweet lines changes ..... :-) I have seen this coconut rice in many blogs and have commented saying it reminded me of my school days when my mom used to pack this for lunch. I was not a great fan of it those days but after coming to US, I started to appreciate my mom's efforts to cook three meals everyday if not 4 which includes a great evening snack. 


Grated Coconut - 3/4 cup
Rice - 1 cup
Oil - 1 tbsp
Mustard - 1 tsp
Urad Dhal - 1 tsp
Channa Dhal - 1 tsp
Curry Leaves- 6-8
Green Chilli - 3 chopped
Asafoetida - a pinch
Salt - to taste


Cook rice separately and let it cool. 

In a pan, heat oil and when hot, add mustard seeds. When it splutters, add urad and channa dhal. When it turns golden, add asafoetida, curry leaves, green chilli and fry for a min. 

Add grated coconut and fry for about 2 mins until coconut separates and turns slightly golden. Do not over fry it as it. You can add salt to this mixture. Turn off heat when you feel the color slightly changes.

Mix the coconut mixture with rice. Serve with any vegetable dish or just chips. I served with sauteed cauliflower

You can also fry cashews in a tbsp of ghee and add it to the rice. It adds taste and richness to the dish. I was in a hurry and I really couldn't add it. 

See you soon!!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Iyengar Bakery Khara Biscuits/ Savory Shortbread Cookie

This month we are supposed to amke this khara Biscuit for our ICC. As soon as I received this recipe, I was so excited. I love spicy cookie and I haven't tasted this ever. Also the pics looked so tempting and so delicious. Immediately I tried this cookie and it tasted very good. We loved it. Let me get into the ingredients and the preparation without wasting time. 


All Purpose Flour - 2 cups
Butter 1/3 Cup softened
Sugar - 4 Tsp
Salt- 1 tsp
Green chilli - 3 chopped
Cilantro - 3 tbsp chopped
Yogurt - 3 tbsp


Pre heat oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit. In a cookie sheet spread aluminium foil and grease it with oil.

Mix flour and salt and set aside. Now beat butter and sugar until creamy and then add 2 tbsp yogurt and continue to beat. 

Add the flour mix and bend it to a crumbly dough. Add cilantro and chilli and mix well. Add 1 tbsp of yogurt if you feel the dough is too thick. I added and worked it with my hands. 

Roll the dough into 1/4" thickness and cut into cookie shapes. 

Place them in a cookie sheet and bake it for 20 - 25 mins. Mine took close to 25 mins. Rotate the cookies halfway. When you see them light brown, take it out, let it cool and enjoy. 

It tasted great even warm. 

Friday, June 3, 2011

Rajma Chawal

This is another dish that I learnt from my mom. Its really simple dish to make. My mom made this dish often if she dint feel like cooking anything elaborate. But to us it would be a great dish. Even now, she asks me to make this often as it does't take much time yet a very healthy dish. Its filling also. The first time my mom made this dish, we were all so excited. I am from South India and we are used to the southern Indian style food. These dishes used to be a treat for us when mom made it. We enjoyed our meal that day and it became our favorite dish. It was my mom's favorite too ( less work  you see ;-) ) 


Red Kidney beans - 1 cup soaked overnight
Onion - 1 finely chopped
Tomato - 2 pureed
Ginger garlic paste - 3/4 tbsp
Oil - 2 tbsp
Cilantro - to garnish
Salt - to taste
Rajma Masala - 1 tbsp ( I dint have it so I used little bit of garam masala, channa masala)


Cook the kidney beans and set aside. 

In a pan heat oil and cumin seeds. When it starts to splutter add ginger garlic paste and fry for a min. 

Then add onion and fry till it becomes translucent. Add tomato puree, masala powder salt and let it cook in medium heat untill the tomato puree cooks well. 

Add water to get to desired consistency. When the raw smell fades, add cooked kidney beans and let it cook for another ten min so that they get soaked well in the gravy. 

Garnish with cilantro and serve hot with Jeera rice, Basmati Rice or just plain white rice. 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Veggie Paratha

Hi Friends! Its been a while since I wrote something here. Once you are out of touch, its really hard to get back to our regular routine. I would say I was also lazy to get back to my blog after a break. Anyways, getting back to work - veggie paratha! Last night I was wondering what to make for dinner, as usual. I had paneer at home. My husband is not a great fan of paneer but I like it. So i usually add it in disguised forms. Dual benefit right! ;-) Its been a while since I made parathas. So immediately thought of making parathas with some veggies in it. Its simple. You can mix any vegetable according to your requirement. I am sure many of us would have already tried it, but thought will post my version of it ;-) 


For filling:
Carrot - 2 Grated
Radish - 4 ( Small red radish) grated
Onion - 1 medium chopped fine
Paneer - 3/4 cup grated
Garam Masala - 1 tsp
Salt - to taste
Oil - 1 tbsp

For Chapathi/roti :
Wheat flour - 2 cups
Salt - to taste 
Warm water - to knead the dough
Oil - 1 tbsp


First, knead the flour with salt oil and water into a soft dough and keep aside. Let it rest untill we make the filling. 

In a pan heat oil and add ginger and garlic. Fry till smell fades and then add onion. Fry till translucent. 

Add grated veggies and let it cook in medium heat for about 5 min untill it becomes tender. Do not add water as they will cook in the water that radish leaves. Add salt and garam masala

Add paneer and let it mix well with the veggies. When the filling is cooked keep aside. 

Now divide the dough into 9 parts . Also divide the filling into 9 parts. I could make 9 parathas out of 2 cups of flour. 

Now take one portion of the dough and make it into a poori with 2 inches diameter. Keep the filling inside and fold it. Leave it in a plate for about 5 mins till you are done with other dough. 

Now when you are done filling, take one at a time and roll it gently to make chapathis. 

Heat a flat pan and place chapathis on it. cook it on one side untill you see small bubbles popping up. Now toss it to the other side and let it cook. Repeat the process untill the chapathi is cooked evenly on both sides. You may also add little oil or ghee to make it softer. 

Serve it with pickle or yogurt. Delicious parathas are ready in minutes. 


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