Sunday, October 31, 2010

Pappulu Kajjikayalu or Pappulu Karjikayalu Step By Step Recipe | Deepavali Sweets | An Anniversary to Celebrate!

There are days that you ought to make sure you remember and make memories even if the days are made hard. An Anniversary is not something you forget, you are made sure you remember. Last year Hubby dear made sure he treated me with a trip I will never forget, by taking me to a place that was my favorite. We celebrated our decade of marriage last year with a trip ahead of the day. This year we didn't plan for a trip as I was already away for a while and wasn't prepared for another one.

When we thought we can safely forget, family and friends won't accept it anyways. Lataji remembered to wish me even while she was traveling. Friends make the occasion so much so wonderful. So a cake and special lunch is a must. With Peddu being down with a viral fever, we didn't want to do anything. But kids insisted on a cake. Eleven years is not that comes every day.

An Eggless Blackforest Cake was ordered for the occasion. Not something that I could ignore that easily!

After a tiring lunch, we wanted to retire for a nap. But the Diwali fever has caught the neighborhood already and since morning there was insistent firecrackers played with. There are times when you feel silence can be so overpowering. I felt this at my Sister's place at San Jose. There was no a drop of sound, not even a bit. All I could feel was my own heart beat. And here I was trying to catch a nap amidst a commotion that was inconceivable. Finally I thought I might just ignore napping..

As a continuation of making something for the Diwali and for the special day today, Athamma wanted to make Kajjikayalu, but with a different stuffing.

Step by Step making of Pappulu Karjikayalu

Get the dough ready and let it rest for 15 minutes

 Grind the stuffing together and keep it aside

 Roll out the dough and place the stuffing on the discs

 If you making the half moon shapes, take the rolled out disc on your palm,

 Place a spoon of the stuffing in the center.

 Close your palm and bring the sides together, slowly close it

Once you close the entire sides, press strongly to close together

 Roll one side inside, continue doing like that as shown in the picture.

Continue doing it with the rest.

 For the full shaped discs, roll out the dough into a small circle, with the stuffing in the center.

 Place another rolled out disc over this and press the sides.

 Firmly press the sides like this.

 Now you have all the shaped ones ready

Heat a pan with required oil for deep frying these Kajjikayalu, fry them on slow flame.

Once they are cooked on both sides, drain them on a kitchen towel.

Ingredients Needed:

For the cover:

All purpose flour / Maida - 1 cup
Ghee - 2 tsp
Salt - a pinch
Water to knead

For the filling:

Fried Gram Dal - 1 cup
Dried Coconut/ Copra - 1/2 cup
Jaggary - 1/2 cup or (you can increase as per your taste)
Cashew nuts - 10 whole
Cardamom - 2 nos

Oil for Deep frying

Method to prepare:

Kajjikayalu are normally made in half moon shapes. There are many ways to make this. You can even make these in the molds available.

To make the dough

To make the dough, take the flour, salt and ghee in a bowl. Mix well. Then slowly add water to knead into a stiff dough. If you want to get a crispy cover, the dough has to be stiff. When you allow it to rest, it will get soft again. So either you mix some more flour before rolling out. Or you knead and roll out immediately

To make the filling

Grate the Copra or the Dried coconut. This tastes great and also stays longer as the fresh one might get spoiled.

Pulse the fried gram dal and cardamon in a mixer, then add the jaggary and pulse again. Chop the cashew nuts into small pieces. This will be a dry mixture.

Making the kajjikaya on the rolling board.

Once you are ready to roll out, divide the dough into small equal balls. Using the rolling pin, dust the balls, flatten them into small circles, like the puris.

Scoop a spoonful of the dal filling and place on the middle. List one side of the dough, bring to the other side and press well. You can dab some more flour and press well so that the filling doesn't come out.

Making it in your palm.

Once you roll out the cover, take it on to your left palm. Hold it while you scoop in the fillings. Now gently cover both open sides. You will end up having a half moon.

In all shapes, to get the design, you have to turn the sides like tuck in and then press. Then again tuck in. As shown in the picture.

Round Kajjikaya.

This is much easier way to make. Roll out two small puri size dough. Place the filling in the middle. Place the other puri on top and press down well.

Once you have all the Kajjikaya filled and ready, Heat the oil for deep frying. Once the oil is hot, simmer and gently drop in the kajjikaya. Fry in low flame, only then the outer layer will be crispy.

Turn to the other side, when its cooked on one side. Once its done on both sides, drain them on to a kitchen towel.

The dal stuffing will be more than what you need. You can make so many other varieties with it.

I am hoping to get some more sweets to be featured..stay tuned!

Have a great week ahead!

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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Microwave Chocolate Burfi in 5 minutes | Deepavali Sweets | Step By Step Recipes

I missed celebrating Navrathri as grandly as we did last year. So thought I should alteast welcome Deepavali in that manner. Yesterday I took out all my cookbooks, paper clippings to browse through the possible sweet and savories that can be done this year. I have shortlisted it to Basundi, Mohanthal, Mysore Pak (looks like both recipes are almost the same, will have to check again) Cheeroties. When it came to Savories, I have fallen short! I don't know what to make. Please do leave your suggestions. Will be great to get ideas.

We will also have my both SIL and their families visiting us for the festival. So we are gearing ourselves for the grand get together and much merry and fun to happen. While my older nieces are grown up, we still will have five hyper active kids to cater at home.

Hubby dear has already listed out the dishes that I might have to consider making for them. As a prelude, plus as a part of our anniversary, I thought I should make this quick Chocolate Burfi. Also I promised Smitha I will send her one more dish for the MEC: Festive Dishes she is hosting for me.

Read this Chocolate Halwa, you will pretty much know how passionate I am on this halwa. This Chocolate Burfi is almost the same, except different cooking mode and timing. And it gets done by itself in flat 5 minutes! Can you imagine indulging in a sinful treat within 5 minutes of craving for it? This answers your query. Of course provided you stock the ingredients on hand.

If you are anything like me, you will have condensed milk, Cocoa powder and butter all the time on hand. So why wait, just whip and indulge in this tempting Burfi.

As per my own description, I always consider a Halwa to be more lose without any shape. While a Burfi to be able to retain a shape. Well you can ask how Kerala halwa which is mostly cut into cubes are referred as halwa. I don't know I may call it as halwa but I consider it as Burfi. Another aspect that can contribute would be the texture of burfi tending to be more crumbly. while halwa is mostly chewy. Is that right?

Whatever you may call it, either burfi or halwa this is a time for indulgence and let's not waste it by discussing on the name!

Making Chocolate Burfi Step By Step

Get all the ingredients ready at hand. That tray is for making brownies. It works fine with this too

In a microwave safe bowl, add the condensed milk.

Next add the cocoa powder to the CM.

Mix the cocoa powder well into the condensed milk.

 Continue until the powder is well blended.

Next add the sugar and butter

Cook the mix in micro mode for 5 minutes

At 3 minutes, take it out and stir well.

After 5 minutes, it will look like this.

Mix well and transfer to the greased plate.

Spread it neatly on the plate

Garnish with Almond slivering.

Cooking Method : Microwave Mode
Preparation Time : 2 mins
Cooking Time : 5 mins
Setting Time : 30 mins or less

Chocolate Burfi in Microwave

Condensed Milk - 400 gms
Cocoa powder - 2 tbsp
Sugar - 4 tsp
Butter - 25 gms (increase more if required)

Slivered Almonds

Method to prepare:
In a microwave safe bowl, take the condensed milk, add cocoa powder mix well. Then add the sugar and butter. Combine everything together.

Micro for 5 mins. At 3 minutes, stop, stir the mix and keep it back for the remaining minutes. At 3 minutes the batter will still be watery.

Once 5 minutes is done, the moisture would have evaporated and it will resemble a crumbly texture. Mix everything well together.

Grease a tray with butter/ghee. Transfer the chocolate mix to the tray and spread it even. Sprinkle the almonds slivering over the top and allow it to cool.

Cut into squares after 30 mins. You will not have perfect squares cutting on the sides as it will be chewy. But you will be able to remove them in shape.
This is the new brownie tray I got from SFO, hubby dear was expecting a brownie to be served. He was pleasantly surprised to bite on a chewy Chocolaty Burfi.

Will try to add either AP flour or Almond flour to get that crumbly texture next time.

Sending this to Smitha who is hosting MEC: Festive Dishes this month.  You have until 31st Oct to send in your entries to Smitha.

Other Halwa Recipes blogged

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Thursday, October 28, 2010

And the answer is..Banana Peel Halwa

Banana Peel!...yep..the halwa was unbelievably made with the peels. I refuse to believe it wasn't a mystery at all!..for the first person to comment was Ambika and she said bang Banana Peel. Now Ambika has to tell us know if it was purely a guess and she came home..:)

Thanks to everybody who played along. It was a total surprise for me when Athamma asked me what the halwa was made of. And none of my colleagues who tasted it was able to guess it right. So all you guys truly proved yourself to be the foodies that you all guessed it on the first shot.

Paaka Shaale, Prathiba and Priya guessed it right as Banana Peel. Now you will let me know your secret in guessing it so right.

Hubby dear had got some very fresh bananas and by evening most of them disappeared. I didn't think much about it. But Athamma said instead of food, boys snacked on them. Much later she got us this halwa to eat. She asked us to guess what it was. Well it was beyond me. And it was really very shocking when she said seeing such fresh peels, she wanted to experiment with it. And you have the halwa!
It was so good that Hubby dear, who normally never eats sweets, asked for a second helping. Athamma was even keen on getting my colleagues taste this. So naturally I would want to see if any of them would guess it. Not a single person was able to guess but came back for a second serve. And none could believe that one would actually make a halwa with the peels.

Banana Peel Halwa!

Banana Peels puree - 1 cup
Milk - 1 tbsp
Sugar - 1/2 cup
Fried Gram dal powder - 1 tsp
Cardamon powder a pinch
Ghee - 1 tsp
Water - 1 tsp

Method to prepare:

Take the peels, wash well and remove the stack. Remove all blacken parts. Cut into small pieces and make a puree of it in the mixer. If required add 1 tsp water to get a smooth puree.

Heat a thick bottom pan. Melt the sugar with milk and once it is melted, add the peel puree. Keep stirring.

Half way through it, add the fried gram dal, mix well. Continue cooking till the halwa reaches a thick consistency.

Finally add the ghee once you feel the consistency is good. You can know by feeling the texture, it would have turned grainy.

Notes: All the fresh parts is used for this peel. About 5 big banana peels were used to get about 1 cup of puree.

If you want to make it more rich, you can add cashew nut powder or add more ghee.

Once again thank you all for playing along!

I am planning on Deepavali Special Dishes. Let me know what you have in mind.

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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Guessing Game!

Well I know it's been ages since I had anything interesting to play this guessing game. I remember most of us doing it in the initial period of blogging. Guessing games are really fun as it makes you think had. But with natural ingredients, it is quite easy. 

Still I remember few bloggers who had natural ingredient yet it used to be so tough to guess them.

What I got to offer as a mystery is a cooked product. You got to guess what the main ingredient is. It is a sweet dish, well a halwa. I can see many of you saying not again! Yes I seem to have quite a few Halwa Recipes on the blog. But believe this halwa is not my creation. I would never have thought of getting this to the blog. 

But can you believe hubby dear actually asked for it couple of times, you can be sure it was excellent. Moreover I took the box to my office and nobody was able to guess the ingredient. But vouched it was really fantastic.

It is a halwa made with one unexpected part of the fruit. The fruit is very commonly available. But the main ingredient in this halwa is never used. Yet it turned out to be so delicious.

Now out with your answers!

Will post the answer and recipe tomorrow!

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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Microwave Easy Cooking Event Round Ups | Host Lists

Below is the list of future hostess for Microwave Easy Cooking Event and the past round ups

If you are interested to host, please leave a comment. Else I will email individuals myself..:)

Event Details for 2012
MonthHostRound up
JanuaryKalyaniMEC: Jan
MarchPrivishMEC: Mar
AprilNaliniMEC: Apr
MayPradnyaMEC: May
June MEC: Jun
July MEC: Simple n Easy Snacks


Event Details for 2011
MonthHostRound up
JanuaryIndrani Dhar of Appyayan
Combo Meals
FebruarySrivalliCurries and Gravies
Priya Mitharwal
Rice Dishes
Lunch Box Dishes
Lakshmi Venkatesh
Calcium Rich Food
Party Appetizers
Monika Manchanda

Microwave Potato Feast
AugustSrivalliPotluck Party 2011
SeptemberNutanTea Time Snacks
OctoberPradnyaOctober Edition
DecemberKaviDecember Edition

Event Details for 2010
MonthHostRound up
JanuaryManju Mahadevan
Dips and Spreads
MarchJay Celebrity Bloggers
Kids Party Food
MayECHealthy Diet Food
JuneKamalikaMEC Delicious Dals
JulyPJMy Favorite things
AugustSrivalliPotluck Party 2010
OctoberSmithaFestive Dishes
NovemberPriyadarshniSweet Tooth
DecemberMonikaSavory Snack

Event Details for 2009
MonthHostRound up
Microwave Paneer
FebruaryJayasreeMicrowave Puddings
Priya Suresh
Savory Snacks in Microwave
Microwave Nuts
MayRachelEssential Extras
JuneSimranBreezy Breakfast
JulyRamyaProtein Rich Foods
AugustSrivalliPotluck Party 2009
SeptemberSrivalliSeptember Edition
OctoberSumaMEC Fresh Produce
NovemberParoMEC: Sweets 'n' Savouries
DecemberChamMEC: Festival Foods

Event Details for 2008
MonthHostRound up
Microwave Tiffins
FebruarySrivalliMicrowave Greens
MarchSrivalliMicrowave Rice
Microwave Cakes
MaySrivalliMicrowave Steamed Dishes
JuneSrivalliMicrowave Preserves
JulySrivalliMicrowave Soups and Stews
AugustSrivalliPotluck Party 2008
SeptemberSrivalliMicrowave Chocolate

NovemberPavani Microwave Cheese
DecemberKamalikaMEC: Halwa

Event Details for 2007
MonthHostRound up
AugustSrivalliMicrowave Sweets

SrivalliMicrowave Basics
OctoberSrivalliMicrowave Snacks
NovemberSrivalliMicrowave Side Dish
DecemberSrivalliMicrowave Gravies

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Saturday, October 23, 2010

Microwave Chicken Biryani | Low Calorie Chicken Biryani | Indian Microwave Recipes | Step By Step Recipes

When I sat down to write down this recipe, I was remembering the dishes that I made for my sis during my stay at her place. I made Uggani for breakfast. Then very late into the night, we set out making Gongura Mamsam. Imagine I had made this only couple of times, always with Athamma around. This is typically her signature dish, I was lost wondering if the leaves have to be coarse in texture or can be ground into paste (as by mistake the boiled one became into puree). Nevertheless it was consumed with great passion and adulation. It was paired with my Mutton Roast that I have planned for the cookbook I made it especially for getting another opinion for the recipe that I have created. I was elated that it got raving reviews.

Then of course was this Tamarind Mix that I made for them to last for about 8-9 months. Believe me, it is really hard cooking in a new kitchen, not having all the paraphernalia you are so used to. Still we managed to filter and extract the pulp and finally got the masala mix done. Now I only hope it stays good for 8 months as I predicted. I was so happy hearing her say that her mom makes it the same way, as she learnt my Amma!

I didn't think there will come a day when I will be feeling tired to even look at the monitor. But that is exactly what has happened. Since coming back to normal grind, I have been so tired to even think of doing anything with the system. The fact that even if I don't get to send an entry for any of the many events that are happening, I can't ignore my own event right. It worked out easy as Smitha choose a theme which gives us many options. So I decided I will send her this Chicken Biryani made in Microwave.

About the Title, yes there is no such thing as Low Calorie Chicken Biryani, yet this recipe calls for no butter or Ghee.

But if you feel it is a taboo, pls go ahead add some for taste!

This was a followup after the many recipes that the MW Chef showed us. Since I can't taste, I didn't know until I came back home and made it for the family that it was really good. Only I should have added ghee. What is a Biryani if it is not rich. Well Microwave Cooking is all about Low Calorie cooking using only tad bit of oil, but I was told that Biryani is not acceptable without being rich.

So this recipe goes without Ghee, but you can add it if you so wish.

I warn you ahead, it may appear making this in microwave is more time consuming and tedious than making it on the stove top or dum process. But you get to rest and do lots of other things during the cooking process. And making it in microwave is more for folks who can't make it on stove top!

Microwave Chicken Biryani in Step by Step

Microwave Cooking Mode
Cooking Time : 45 mins

Wash the chicken and keep it aside.

Wash and Soak rice for 1 hour.
 Chop the onions, tomatoes and get all the spices ready on a plate.
In a microwave safe bowl, add the onions, green chilies, ginger garlic paste along with spices with 2 tsp of oil. Micro for 7 mins.
Keep stirring in interval of 3 mins

 Then add tomatoes and micro for 5 mins.
 Remove and mash well using a ladle.
 Then add the red chili powder, Micro for 2 mins
 Then goes the chicken, mix well.
 Add the turmeric and mix well. Micro for 3 mins

 Then add the chicken mix to the rice that you have kept soaking. Add 4 cups of water and micro for 25 mins.
Stir it couple of times in between.

 When you reach the last 5 mins, add the salt.

Mix everything well.

Finally when it is done, remove from oven, keep a plate covered on the bowl for 5 - 7 mins. This ensures that it gets furthered settled well.

Ingredients Needed:

Rice - 2 cups
Chicken - 300 gms
Ginger Garlic paste - 1 & 1/2 tsp
Onions - 3 big ( 1 & 1/2 cups)
Tomatoes - 2 big
Green chilies - 3 long
Red Chili powder - 1 tsp
Cloves - 3-4
Cinnamon - 2"
Cardamon - 2
Bay leaf - 1
Oil - 2 tsp (replace completely with Butter/Ghee or half oil & half ghee)
Salt to taste

Method to prepare:

Wash and soak rice for 1 hour.

Wash Chicken and let it stand on a colander.

Meanwhile in a big microwave bowl, take the onions, green chilies, spices, along with ginger garlic paste. Micro for 7 mins. Stir in intervals.

Once done, remove and add the tomatoes. Micro for 5 mins.

Remove and mash well using a ladle. Then add red chili powder, chicken, turmeric and mix well. Micro for 5 mins.

Add this chicken mix to the rice (I did this as that bowl was bigger)

Add 4 cups of water and micro for 25 mins.

First stirring is done at 10 mins. Continue stirring after next 10 mins. When you reach the final 5 mins, add the salt.

Once done, remove from oven, cover with lid and keep it aside for 5 - 7 mins.

  • Please make sure the bowl you use is big enough to fit both the rice and chicken mix.
  • Always add salt at the end, else proper cooking will not take place.
  • With this amount it got perfectly cooked end of 25 mins, but if you increase, make sure you test the timing.

Sending this to Smitha who is guest hosting MEC this month themed on Festival Dishes, calling from all faith and culture!

Yes I am planning to send something more, hopefully so. Hope you have sent in yours!

Enjoy the weekends!

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