Sunday, February 24, 2013

Chicken Curry– Quick, Easy & Homely

Nadan Chicken Curry 8

Chicken                                   --    1 kg
Finely Chopped Onions    --    3 – 4 medium size onions
Ginger                                      --    1 inch thick piece
Garlic paste                           --    4 - 5 cloves
Green chillies                        --    3 -4
Tomato                                    --    1 medium size
Turmeric powder                --    ½ tsp
Chilly powder                       --    2 -3 tbsp
Cloves                                      --    5 - 6
Cinnamon                               --   2 inch piece
Fennel seeds                          --   1 tsp
Curry leaves                          --   1 sprig
Coriander leaves                  --   ¼ cup finely chopped
Salt                                             --    to taste
Oil                                               --    2 tbsp, preferably coconut oil

Nadan Chicken Curry 6
Preparation of Chicken Curry:
Clean and cut the chicken into medium size pieces.
Grind the cloves, cinnamon, and fennel seeds into a coarse powder. Keep aside. Crush the ginger and garlic and keep aside.

Nadan Chicken Curry 1    Nadan Chicken Curry 2
Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan. Add the finely chopped onions, green chillies and curry leaves. Saute for 2 - 3 minutes. Add the powdered garam masala and crushed ginger garlic paste. Saute for 4 - 5 minutes. Then add the turmeric powder and chilly powder. Saute until the mixture turns dark brown. Keep an eye and make sure that the it doesn't burn or stick to the bottom of the pan.
Nadan Chicken Curry 3    Nadan Chicken Curry 4
Add the cut chicken and mix well. Add water only if required. Let it cook on a medium flame. Adjust the gravy as required. Add the coriander leaves.
Serve hot. This goes well with appam, chapathi, pathiri, idyappam, rice etc.
Nadan Chicken Curry 7

Recipe Courtesy: Amma 

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Vendakka/Lady’s finger Curry

Vendakka Curry 3
Ingredients:(Serves 3 - 4)
Vendakka/Lady's finger --   200 gms
Onion                                     --   ½ of a medium size
Tomato                                 --   1 small
Green Chillies                    --   2 - 3
Ginger garlic paste          --   1 tsp
Turmeric Powder            --   ¼ tsp
Chilly Powder                   --   1 tsp
Shredded coconut          --   ¼ cup
Salt                                        --   as required
Water                                   --   as required
Mustard Seeds                 -- 1 tsp
Curry Leaves                   --   3 - 4 leaves
Oil                                         --    1 tbsp
Vendakka Curry 4
Preparation of the curry:

Chop the onions, tomatoes and lady's finger in small/medium size. Slit the green chillies. Keep aside. Grind the coconut into a fine paste adding few tablespoons of water as required and keep aside.
Heat oil in a sauce pan. Add the mustard seeds and let it splutter. Add the chopped onions, tomato, green chillies and ginger garlic paste. Saute for 4 - 5 minutes on a medium flame.

Vendakka Curry 1      Vendakka Curry 2
Add the chopped lady's finger. Saute for 2 minutes. Add turmeric powder, chilly powder and salt. Saute until the raw smell goes off. Add the ground coconut and mix well. Add water as required for the gravy and let it boil. Once the gravy boils, do a salt check and garnish with curry leaves. Serve hot with rice.

Vendakka Curry 5

Recipe Courtesy: Amma  

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Malabar Fish Curry–Amma’s Special

Fish Curry 6
Ingredients: (Serves 5 - 6)
Fish                              --    1 lb
Onions/Shallots     --    ½ cup chopped(I always prefer shallots)
Garlic                          --    3 - 4  big cloves
Ginger                         --    1 big piece
Green chillies           --    3 - 4
Tomato                       --    1 medium
Turmeric powder   --    ¼ tsp
Chilly powder          --    2 tsp
Kokum/Kudampuli  --    3 - 4 small pieces(You can see the size of a piece in the pic)
Ground coconut     --    ½ cup
Curry leaves             --   For garnishing
Oil                                 --    2 tbsp (Preferably coconut oil)
Salt                               --    to taste
Fish Curry 7
Preparation of Fish Curry:
Soak the kudam puli in 2 cups of water. Clean the fish, cut into small pieces and keep it aside.
Fish Curry 2
Take a clay pot and add the finely chopped shallots,ginger,garlic,green chillies, tomato, turmeric powder, chilly powder, salt, kudampuli and coconut oil. Mix it well, preferably with hand, so that they are well mixed. Add the water in which the puli was soaked. Keep it on a low flame and let it boil. Once boiled, let it simmer until the gravy is slightly thick.

Fish Curry 1
Add the fish pieces and let it cook until done. Add the ground coconut and let it boil. Garnish with curry leaves and close it with a lid.

Fish Curry 3
Serve hot with rice.

Fish Curry 5

Recipe Courtesy: Amma  

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Chocolate Almond Upside Down Cake – For Valentines Day :)

Being Valentines Day, I see a lot of heart shaped items on all blogs.. Here  comes my entry with a heart shaped upside down cake. I tried to create a heart shape in the center of the cake as well, which was a flop. Then went with some m&m drops to decorate it. The caramel and the almond topping is really great and I realized that it was a bad idea to leave that empty space to create a heart shape.
Chocolate Almond Upside Down Cake 6
For the Caramel topping:
Butter, melted     --   4 tbsp
Brown sugar       --   ¾ cup
Honey                    --   ¼ cup
Almonds thinly sliced, lightly toasted --   1 cup
For making cake:
All purpose flour --   1 ¼ cups
Cocoa powder     --   ½ cup
Baking soda          --   1 tsp
Salt                           --   ½ tsp
Butter                      --   ½ cup or 1 stick, at room temperature
Sugar                      --   1 ½ cups
Eggs                        --   3 large
Buttermilk            --   1 cup
Vanilla extract   --   1 tsp

Chocolate Almond Upside Down Cake 7
Preparation of the cake:
Prepare the topping.Generously butter a 10-inch cake pan. I used a heart pan, this being valentines day special.
Pour 6 tablespoons melted butter into the cake pan and swirl to coat the bottom. Sprinkle in brown sugar. Drizzle honey over sugar and sprinkle evenly with almonds.
I tried to leave a heart shape in the middle, but the shape did not come out well :(
Chocolate Almond Upside Down Cake 3      Chocolate Almond Upside Down Cake 4
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Sift flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together three times to make the cake extra light. Using an electric mixer beat the butter until smooth and fluffy. Add sugar and continue mixing. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Continue beating until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
With the mixer running on low speed, add a third of the dry ingredients and mix to combine. Add half the buttermilk and continue mixing. I used low fat yogurt instead of butter milk. Add another third of the dry ingredients, mix, and add remaining buttermilk and vanilla. Add remaining dry ingredients and mix until smooth. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
Chocolate Almond Upside Down Cake 1    Chocolate Almond Upside Down Cake 2     Chocolate Almond Upside Down Cake 5
Bake for 45 to 55 minutes. Insert a tooth pick or knife in the center and it should come out clean. It took 50 minutes in my oven.
Run a knife around the edge of the pan and immediately invert the pan onto a serving platter. Let it sit with the pan still on top for 5 minutes so the caramel can soak into the cake a bit, before removing the pan. If the topping is sticking to the pan, warm the pan surface over a low burner to loosen the caramel and then pour it over the cake. If there are almonds sticking on to the pan, use a spoon to remove them and stick it on the cake.
Let cool completely. Cut and serve. The delicious cake is ready.
Chocolate Almond Upside Down Cake 9
Recipe Courtesy: Martha Stewart

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Chatti Pathiri

Chatti Pathiri 9

Ingredients (Serves 12 - 16):

Chicken breast         --   1 lb
Turmeric Powder   --   ¼ tsp
Chilly Powder          --   1 tsp
Salt                               --   as required


Onions                            --   3 medium sized
Green Chillies              --   5 - 6
Ginger Garlic Paste  --   1 tsp
Coriander leaves      --   a handful chopped
Turmeric Powder     --   ¼ tsp
Pepper Powder         --   1 tsp
Garam Masala          --   1 tsp
Salt                                 --   as required
Oil                                   --   1 tbsp


All Purpose Flour   --   2 cups
Eggs                             --   2 large
Salt                               --   as required
Water                          --   2 cups or as required for a thin consistency
Ghee                             --   2 tsp

Custard mixture to dip the layers:

Eggs                            --   5 large
Milk                             --   ½ cup
Salt                              --   as required


Cashew Nuts           --   10 - 15
Poppy Seeds            --   2 tbsp

Chatti Pathiri 8

Preparation of chatti pathiri:

Marinate the chicken with turmeric powder, chilly powder and salt. Cook until done and the water is completely evaporated. Shred the chicken pieces with a fork or spoon. Keep aside

In a large frying pan, add oil and saute the thinly sliced onion, green chillies, ginger garlic paste and salt until the onions are translucent.Add turmeric powder,  and pepper powder and saute for few more minutes. Add the shredded chicken and mix well. Saute for few more minutes until they are well combined. Switch off the flame and add the coriander leaves and garam masala and mix well.

Chatti Pathiri 1

Make the custard mixture to dip the layers.In a wide bowl, add the eggs, milk and salt and combine well with a whisk. Keep aside.

Chatti Pathiri 3   Chatti Pathiri 4

Prepare the batter for making the pancakes/dosas for the layers. Mix the all purpose flour,eggs,salt, water and ghee until well combined and with no lumps. The consistency should be thin, to make thin pancakes.

The pancakes should be of the same size or preferably slightly bigger than the pan you use to bake.This helps to keep the pathiri in shape.

Pour a ladle full of batter into a frying pan at medium flame. Swirl the pan to create a thin round pancake of required size. You can also spread the batter the same way as making dosas. When the pancake is cooked, may be in a minute, flip over to the other side and let it cook for another minute or half. Repeat until the batter is over. I got around 14 pancakes to fit into my 8 inch pan. Make sure that the pancakes do not stick to each other, it might be a pain to separate them retaining its shape.

Chatti Pathiri 2

Prepare the pan to make the chatti pathiri.Chatti pathiri can be made in a sauce pan cooking on the stove Or in an oven safe dish cooking in an oven. Grease the pan well on the bottom and the sides. If using the oven, preheat to 350F.

Take a pancake, dip it in the custard mixture and place it in the bottom of the pan. Do the same with the second pancake. On top of the second pancake, spread some filling and then place the third pancake dipped in the custard mixture on top of the filling. Alternate the filling and the dipped pancake until the you use up all the prepared pancakes.Divide the filling into equal parts too.

When done with the layering, pour the remaining custard mixture onto the top of the pathiri. This helps to hold the layers together and form a cake like structure for the chatti pathiri. If you do not have enough mixture, use one more egg and mix it with the left over mixture.

Chatti Pathiri 5

Garnish with fried cashews and also sprinkle the poppy seeds/couscous on top of it. Cover it with aluminum foil and bake for 30 - 40 minutes in the middle rack. It depends upon your oven. So bake until the custard mixture is well set and a toothpick / knife inserted at the center comes out clean. Remove the aluminium foil and broil it for another 2 - 3 minutes to make the top part light brown in colour.

Chatti Pathiri 6

Alternately, if preparing in a sauce pan, close the pan with a tight lid and cook on a very low flame until the custard is well set and completely cooked. Remember, the only uncooked item in the pan is the custard mixture. It might take around 25 - 30 minutes. Once done, flip over the pathiri into a plate and slide it back to the pan and cook for another 5 minutes. You can also flip it directly onto a wide pan and cook for another 5 minutes. It might be easy this way as you don't have to flip it multiple times, but at the cost of cleaning multiple pansJ.

Chatti Pathiri 7

Friday, February 8, 2013

Kozhi Nirachathu (Stuffed Chicken)

Kozhi Nirachathu 9


Whole Chicken       --   Around 1.5 to 2 kg
Turmeric Powder --   1 tsp
Chilly Powder        --   4 tbsp
Lemon Juice           --   2 tbsp
Salt                             --   as required
Water                        --   as required to prepare the marinade

Egg Masala:

Eggs                            --   1 or 2 per chicken, depending upon the size of the eggs.
Onions                        --   3 medium sized
Green chillies          --   3 - 4
Ginger                        --   1 tbsp,thinly sliced
Garlic                         --   1 tbsp,thinly sliced
Curry Leaves          --   1 sprig
Turmeric Powder --   ½ tsp
Chilly Powder        --   1 tsp
Coriander Powder --   1 tbsp
Cashews                   --   10 - 12, broken into pieces
Salt                              --   as required
Oil                                --   2 tbsp


Onions                       --   4 medium sized
Green chillies         --   3 - 4
Ginger                       --   1 tbsp,thinly sliced
Garlic                        --   1 tbsp,thinly sliced
Curry Leaves         --   2 sprigs
Tomato                    --   2 medium size
Turmeric Powder --   ½ tsp
Chilly Powder       --   2 tsp
Coriander Powder --   1 tbsp
Garam Masala      --   1 tsp
Fennel Powder     --   2 tsp or 1 tsp fennel seeds
Coriander leaves --   a handful, chopped
Salt                            --   as required
Oil                              --   2 - 3 tbsp

Kozhi Nirachathu 11


Clean the chicken and make shallow cuts on the breast and thighs. Marinate the chicken with the ingredients in the marinade section and keep it covered in the refrigerator for minimum of 2 hours. You can also leave it overnight.

Boil the eggs and keep aside. Heat oil in a pan. Add the cashews and fry until they are golden brown. Remove the cashews and keep aside.Now add the thinly sliced onions, green chillies, ginger, garlic, curry leaves and salt and saute until the onions are translucent. Then add the turmeric powder, chilly powder and coriander powder. Saute until the raw smell goes off. Add the fried cashews and boiled eggs. Mix well and keep aside.

Stuff the chicken with this mixture. It is easy to insert the eggs first and then the masala. Tie the chicken legs together with a twine. This helps to hold the stuffed masala in place. Tie the wings too.

Kozhi Nirachathu 8

In a large frying pan, add 2 - 3 tbsp of oil. Shallow fry the chicken in medium heat, flipping on all sides, until all the sides are light brown. Remove the chicken and drain on a paper towel.

In the same pan, add the thinly sliced onions, slit green chillies, ginger, garlic and curry leaves. Saute until the onions are translucent. Add the chopped tomatoes and fry until the tomatoes are squishy. Add the turmeric powder, chilly powder, coriander powder and fennel powder. If using fennel seeds, add them in the oil initially before adding the onions and let it splutter. Saute until the raw smell of the powders goes off.

Add water if required, just keep in mind that water oozes out of the chicken while baking and add water at this stage only if required to cook the onions and masalas. Add the coriander leaves and garam masala and mix well. The gravy is ready.

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Spread half of the gravy on to a baking tray and place the chicken on the masala. Spread the remaining masala on the chicken.

Tightly cover the tray with aluminum foil. Place it in the middle rack of the oven and bake for about 1 hour and 45 minutes. Remove the foil and cook for another 10 minutes.

Kozhi Nirachathu 10