Sunday, October 24, 2010

Spicy Powders from Indian Cuisine-6

I am sorry of late I am not able to post much on my blogs as I am always on the run. I am also not keeping good health. Writing out recipes as I found out is not that easy. I need time as well as the right atmosphere for it. More over when we cook, the measurements of various ingredients are not exact. They are just on an estimation. I don't bother with the measuring jars.But when I write them down I have to be very careful. Or else the dish will not be successful. That is why it takes time.

My previous posts on this topic are here.

Hope you are trying them out. I hope my instructions are clear and easy for you to follow. If there are any doubts or suggestions you can mail me at:

Here is one more:

1. Coriander Seeds Powder: Coriander (leaves) is known as Chinese Parsley, or Cilantro. The leaves are used very widely in Indian cuisine. Its fruit is also used. Coriander seeds or rather dried fruits are known as Dhania(धनिया) in Hindi- even the leaves are referred to as Dhania. In Telugu seeds are known as Dhaniyaalu  (ధనియాలు) and the leaves are known as Kothimeera( కొత్తిమీర). 
Dried seeds are not only used as spice but also has medicinal values and is used in many kitchen remedies. Here is the recipe for the spicy powder made from these seeds. This can be used to eat with idlis, Dosas, upma or other such South Indian snacks, boiled rice and also as taste maker in curries.

Coriander seeds     250gms
Chickpea     75 gms
Black gram    75 gms
Mustard seeds(black)  2 tbsp
Cumin seeds    2 Tbsp
Fenugreek seeds   2 tsp
Dried red chillies   20
Curry leaves  2 sprigs
Tamarind   size of a lemon
Salt To taste
Sugar 1-2 tsp
Oil    100 gms
Coriander seeds- dried.
Chick peas-split and husk removed
Black gram- split and husked
Fenugreek seeds
Black Mustard Seeds and Dried Red Chillies
Curry leaves
  • Heat oil in a pan. The flame should be turned to sim(low). First add chick pea and fry for two three minutes. Keep stirring.
  • Now add the black gram. Fry the lentils until they turn slightly brown. Keep on stirring  to avoid burning of the ingredients. Add Fenugreek and mustard seeds and fry for some more time till the crackling of the mustard seeds is observed. Fenugreek seeds emit a pleasant fragrance and turn brown.
  • Now add the cumin seeds, coriander seeds, red chillies and curry leaves and the entire mixture is fried for a few more minutes. Cumin and coriander seeds don't take long.
  • Cool to room temperature. Add the remaining ingredients and grind to a coarse powder. I prefer the traditional mortar to the modern food processor. It is a bit hard work, but the  powder turns out in the right texture.
  • Cool completely and store in air tight container.
This is how it looks.

You can add a few pods of garlic if you like but first peel them and dry them in shade for some time and then fry them along with other ingredients.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Spicy Chillies

OK once more I am posting recipes on green chillies or peppers. These are from authentic Andhra cuisine. I love them. They are very tasty and are eaten with cooked rice and Dal (lentil). The Dal can be Phikki Daal i.e., just boiled with enough water. Salt and turmeric is added. Some like it a bit watery-pouring consistency like in North India. In South it is called Mudda Pappu but it is very thick and turmeric is not added. Or the Dal can be prepared adding leafy vegetables or other vegetables. These spicy chillies go well with these Dals and also with curd rice.
Before I give you the recipes some points to be noted first. The chillies should be green, tender, medium sized but broad and thick skinned. Choose less spicy ones according to your taste. Too much spiciness will not bring out the taste of the ingredients used for filling them. Clean them and wipe them dry. Air them for an hour or two so that the moisture  completely dries off. If not they don't keep beyond a day or two.

1. Vaamu Mirapakayalu
Vaamu means Ajwain (Hindi) or Carom seeds or Bishop"s Weed in English. It is very pungent in taste. But has  excellent medicinal qualities. It is good for digestion, gastro problems, nausea, constipation etc. It improves our appetite. It is very widely used in Indian cuisine.

Carom seeds     50 gms
oil                    50 gms
Turmeric powder   1/2 tsp
Salt      To taste
Lemons      1
Green chillies  100 gms

  • Grind together, carom seeds, salt and turmeric.
  • Piece the green chillies making a slit up to three fourths of its length. Don't slit them completely.
  • If you think the chillies are too spicy, remove the seeds. Otherwise not necessary.
  • Squeeze out the lemon juice mix with the spicy mixture thoroughly and stuu into the chillies. Place them in a bowl or a bottle-glass or ceramic and pour oil on them.
  • See that all the chillies are well coated in oil. Keep aside for 2-3 hours. Then use it.
  • Will keep for a week. You can refrigerate them to last for more days.
This is how the chillies should be stuffed.

2 Ava Mirapakayalu
Ava means mustard seeds. We in Andhra Pradesh use black mustard seeds for its pungent taste, in many curries and other dishes. This is powdered and used.
Mustard powder, Salt and turmeric powder

Mustard seeds Black    50 gms
oil                            50 gms
Turmeric powder       1/2 tsp
Salt                          To taste
Lemons                    1
Green chillies           100 gms

  • It is same as above.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Tasty Chillies

I have not been able to post in this blog for so long. sorry friends, I am travelling on and off. So it is difficult for me to keep in touch. But I am collecting many authentic, recipes from Andhra Kitchens. The moment i am back for good I will post many of them.

Any way here is one of our authentic, traditional recipes from Andhra Kitchens. Hope you like it. this called Oora (ura) Mirapakayalu or Challa or Majjiga Mirapakayalu.  Challa means butter milk and Mirapakayalu means peppers or chillies and Oora means to soak in Telugu.

This is prepared by soaking chillies in buttermilk. hence the name. this is one of the most favourite accompaniments like the papad. These are fried in oil and eaten with Dal (lentil)  dishes and rice. 

The idle time for preparation of this is summer time. But any time if it is hot for a week or two, we can make them and store.

For this purpose, broad, thick skinned but medium sized that is not too long chillies are used. Actually there is a special variety available locally, which is very good for this recipe. It is better to use those variety which not too spicy. They should be washed and cleaned, wiped dry and left for some time to completely dry. Sour curds should be churned after adding some water to make buttermilk. It should be thin.

Chillies   500 gms
Buttermilk   half litre
turmeric  1tsp
Salt  To taste

  • Don't remove the stalks of the chillies. Leave them.
  • Mix in salt and turmeric to the buttermilk. Mix well until the salt dissolves completely.
  • Put a slit on one side of the chillies up to three-fourths of its length. They should not be slit completely.
  • Soak the chillies in the buttermilk. Lightly stir the buttermilk now and then and leave them over night.
  • Next morning drain the chillies and place them in the sun to dry. Place the buttermilk also in the sun for an hour or two.
  • At the end of the day, bring the chillies inside and leave them to cool for some time.
  • Then again put them in the buttermilk to soak overnight.
  • Next day again repeat the process.
  • Repeat this for three to four days until all the buttermilk is exhausted.
  • Dry the chillies in hot sun until they are completely dry and rustling.They turn slightly brown on drying.
  • Store them in air tight container. This will keep for an year.
  • For using them, heat oil well and bring down the heat. Put some chillies at a time and deep fry till crispy. This will only take a minute or two. So be careful not to burn them. Drain them on a blotting paper or a tissue paper and serve with Rice and Dal. They are spicy, sour and tasty. Once fried, these can be kept for a week or two in a air tight container. But it is better to fry them and serve fresh.
This is the variety of Chillies. they are not that spicy as other varieties. I like their colour.
Buttermilk with salt and turmeric.
The chillies are slit and soaked in the buttermilk over night and dried in sun until completely dry.