May 31, 2010

Carrot Rice

My family is weird when it comes to carrots .. We buy heaps & heaps of it. Well, there is no specific reason as to why we buy this veggie so much. Somehow, whoever makes a trip to the market, is sure to carry some juicy carrots back home. So, this way, I always have quite a lot of carrots stocked up & despite adding it to every dish under the sun, there are always a few leftovers which eventually wilt.

And this is exactly how, Carrot Rice came into being at home. Whenever I have loads of leftover carrots, This dish simply shoes up in the menu.

Carrot Rice 1

This one really is as easy as it can get. Just a few grated carrots, some basic spices & its done in no time. Its a great option with leftover rice too.

You Will Need:
  • 5 medium sized carrots - peeled & grated
  • 1 cup Rice - Any Variety ( I used Sona Masuri )
  • 4 - 5 green chillies - finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 tsp Red Chilli Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tsp Kitchen King Masala
  • chopped Cilantro for garnish
  • Salt as per taste
  • 1 tbsp oil

How To:

  • Clean rice in several changes of water. Pressure cook rice. Set aside & allow it to cool
  • Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan, splutter cumin seeds, add chopped green chillies & ginger garlic paste & fry for a few secs.
  • Add grated carrots, turmeric powder, red chilli powder & saute till the raw smell disappears. The carrots need not be cooked completely.
  • Add rice, Garam Masala, Kitchen King Masala & Salt. Mix well.

Transfer to a serving bowl. Garnish with chopped cilantro. Serve with Raita & Potato chips. Enjoi !!!

Carrot Rice 2

You could make it more elaborate by adding a few more vegetables. You could use some onions too. The next time, I will be adding some green peas for a nice bite.

If you have a house like mine, with loads of leftover carrots, you know what to do !!!

May 19, 2010

South Indies: Balaka/Majjige Menasu - Sun Dried Green Chillies

When the sun is at its peak, why not make good use of it?? Atleast this is what my grandmom believed in. Of all the things that my grandmom made during summer, I particularly love Balaka - sun dried green chillies.

Though these are readily available in most stores, there is something very charming about home made stuff .. Go ahead & make good use of the sun.

Balaka 1

These are usually made in bulk & are stored for over more than a year. And, these are fairly simple to make as compared to papads & the like. Though, a time consuming process, its totally worth the wait. These are perfect for monsoons, when one craves for something fiery & spicy.


You Will Need:

  • 50 Green Chillies
  • 3 cups Sour Buttermilk
  • 3-4 tsp Salt

How To:

  • Wash & pat dry green chillies. Make slits halfway along, such that the chillies remain intact & do not open up. You could use a toothpick or a small knife for this
  • In a huge bowl, mix buttermilk & salt
  • Immerse the slit green chillies in the buttermilk-salt mixture. Keep them in the mixture for 3 complete days. Keep stirring the chillies atleast twice a day.
  • Now, take a wide plate or spread a huge plastic sheet & sun dry the chillies. At the end of the day, transfer the chillies back to the buttermilk mixture.
  • Repeat the procedure for about 3 days.
  • Throw way the sour buttermilk & sun dry the green chillies for another 4 days until the chillies lose all moisture & are completely dry.
  • Store in a air-tight container.
  • Fry them for a few seconds, until golden brown.

Enjoi with a simple Dal Tadka , Majjige Huli or Curd Rice . . .


  • You could also use these chillies to temper plain Dal Tadka & Green Mango Dal in particular.
  • Those of you who are not used to spicy food may find this very fiery. So first, take a small bite to see if you can take the heat :)

May 11, 2010

Evening Treats - Spiced Puffed Rice

Almost every morning, I promise myself to eat healthy. I normally do good throughout the day, But by evening, this little monster in by belly craves for some evening munchies. And, thanks to my family, there is always an ample stock of Aloo Bhujia, Sev & some yummy Kodbale.

I honestly feel that I would be doing much better, if I could curb my Evening Munchies. I guess the best way to deal with this is probably eat a fruit or something

But a low-calorie snack is even better. It takes care of your tastebuds. Which is why I love Spiced Puffed Rice. Works great as an evening treat

Spiced Puffed Rice

You Will Need:

  • Puffed Rice/Mamra/Kadle Puri - 3 litres
  • 2 fistfuls - groundnuts
  • 1 fistful - Roasted Split Gram/Dalia
  • 2 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 8 - 10 dry red chillies - broken
  • A few sprigs of curry leaves
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 6-8 garlic pods
  • Salt as per taste
  • 2 tbsp Oil

How To:

  • In a large heavy bottomed pan, heat oil. Splutter mustard seeds. Add groundnuts & fry on low flame for a couple of mins.
  • Add dalia, red chillies, turmeric, red chilli powder, curry leaves, garlic pods one at a time. Fry on low heat until groundnuts become crisp.
  • Add puffed rice & salt & mix well till the puffed rice is fully coated with spices.
  • Let it cool & store in air-tight jars.

Enjoi your evenings with a HOT cuppa Coffee & Spiced Puffed Rice ...

This is a great option, if you are seeking far more unhealthier stuff like pakodas & Bhajjis. And yes, they are great for picnics too.

Happy Munching :)

May 4, 2010

Indian Spice Box - Masala Dabba

Lets say, I am not in the greatest of moods to write out a recipe at the moment. I have something else for you. I was quite restless yesterday, So I was playing around with my camera & suddenly my Masala Dabba caught my fancy. A few clicks later, I already felt better. See what photography can do to you :)

Masala Dabba 2

The Masala Dabba that you see here should be more than 40 yrs old. My MIL has been using it since, I don't know when. And, I just love to treasure such things.

What goes into a Masala Dabba would depend on which part of India one comes , I have the usual ingredients needed for tempering any South Indian dish. Mustard seeds, Cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, Urad Dal, Chana Dal & Red chilli powder. All the other additional spices are there in the rack.

Masala Dabba

If you can see the background, there is 'Simply South' by Chandra Padmanabhan. Its been more than a year since I bought this one, But I haven't tried a single recipe. In case any of you have tried any recipes from it, any recommendations?? I shall be glad to give it a try.

See you soon with a recipe :)