3 May 2021

Sembilai Vada (South Indian Patra)

 This one is a delightful dish. The Gujarati Patra is more popularly known but did you know there's an equally delectable South Indian version too?

Pair this Patra with Pepper/Jeera rasam and South Indian kadhi and your day's made :)



Arbi/Colocasia leaves - 8 small or 6 large leaves
Toor dal - 1 cup
Red chilli - 4
Salt to taste 
Hing - 1/4 tsp

1. Wash & soak toor dal for 1 hour. Drain and grind to a thick paste (use very little water) along with red chillies, salt and hing.

2. Wash and pat dry the arbi leaves. Place it face down on the counter and carefully trim away the thick back vein.

3. Spread the ground lentils mixture evenly over one leaf and place another leaf on top. Repeat the process with as many leaves as you want to layer with, but bear in mind that too many leaves will make the rolling part difficult; so best to limit it to max 4 leaves.

4. Roll the leaves a bit tightly and hold in place. Place on the steamer plate and steam cook for about 10 minutes. Remove and cool slightly.

5. Cut the roll into 1/2 inch thick rolls. Heat enough oil for shallow frying in a pan and fry the patra slices till golden brown on both sides. Alternately, if you are health conscious you can also brush the rolls with oil and fry in the microwave oven or Air fryer.

6. Drain excess oil and serve as desired.

11 March 2021

Apple-Banana Sheera (Halwa)

 Fruits are an amazing source of natural sugar. I  love using them in desserts. This one for example. First try and it came out so well. Do try it and let me know.



Semolina/Rawa - 1 cup

Ghee - 1 cup

Sugar - 3/4 cup

Water - 2 cups (For the roasted rawa I used, it absorbed a good 3 cups water, so please use as required)

Chopped apple - 1/4 cup

Chopped Banana - 1/4 cup

Sliced cashews - a few

Cinnamon powder - a pinch

clove powder - a pinch


1. Add water and chopped apples to a saucepan and let simmer so the apples cook. After about 5 mins, add the cinnamon and clove powders so the apple absorbs the flavour.

2. Once the apple pieces are tender, add the sugar and stir well. Simmer only till sugar dissolves. Turn off flame.

3. Meanwhile heat ghee in a non-stick pan and add cashews. Roast till golden brown, remove and keep aside.

4. Now add the semolina/rawa to the ghee and keep stirring on low-medium flame till rawa turns golden brown and you get a nice 'bhuna hua' or roasted aroma.

5. Add the chopped bananas and give it a good stir for 3-4 mins.

6. Now carefully add the apple-sugar water (it will splutter so be careful). Stir quickly and continuously to avoid lumps.

7. Once all the water is absorbed, check consistency and if the rawa looks cooked. If the halwa is too thick, add little more water.

8. Add the cashews and cover-cook on low for about 5 mins. Check the rawa again. If all looks good, remove from flame and serve.