15 February 2022

Puli Upma/ Puli mavu /Simple Rice Upma

I wonder if any other cuisine in the world would have as many starters, naashta and in-betweener varieties as ours. Take Upma for eg, so many varieties with so many ingredients and so many variations too. In that train of thought, one of the simplest upma recipes that's a personal favourite is - Puli Upma made with Rice flour and just few other ingredients.

Each one has their own version of this dish or preference of how they like it. I personally like it little crispy and brown, while some like it pasty.

How you like it is up to you, here's the base recipe though as a guideline.



Rice flour - 1 cup

Tamarind extract - 1 cup (1 lemon size tamarind made into 1 cup using enough water)

Salt to taste

Hing powder - 1/4 tsp


Sesame oil - 4-5 tbsps

Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp

Urad dal - 1/4 tsp

Dry Red Chili - 2 medium


1. Add rice flour, salt and hing to a bowl. Knead into a soft dough using the tamarind extract water as required. Keep aside.

Note: Check for salt at this stage itself.

2. Heat oil in a wok. Add sesame seeds and let splutter.

3. Add urad dal and red chilies, roast till dal turns golden brown.

4. Using your hands, sprinkle the kneaded rice flour dough into the oil carefully, like you would do for Onion Pakoda. Basically, take small portions of the dough and drop into the oil using your fingers as a nozzle.

5. Mix well with the oil On low-medium flame, so that it gets absorbed evenly into the rice flour dough. Keep stirring, breaking down the dough bits as you stir till you get Sago/sabudana size bits.

6. Stir for about 5-7 mins till the upma leaves its raw smell. You can switch off the flame if you don't want it too brown and crispy.

Serve hot. Tastes best with yogurt or curd rice.

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.

30 October 2020

Homemade Peanut Butter

 How many times have you been tempted to reach out for the peanut butter bottle in the supermarket?

But did you know it is downright easy to make it at home? Takes just about 10 minutes. Here's how...



Whole Peanuts - 200 gms

Olive/ groundnut or refined oil - 1 tbsp

Optional for flavouring - Cocoa powder


1. Dry roast groundnuts in a pan for about 5 minutes or till the peel starts to crumble

2. Let cool a bit and sift the peel from the nuts

3. Add to a blender jar and grind till it becomes a paste. Add the oil and give it another quick run. Oil is optional, I add it to give it a little shine, smoothness and make it easier to grind.

That's it! Refrigerate in an air-tight jar and use as you like! 

For flavoured peanut butter, add cocoa powder while grinding. Experiment with other flavours and let me know :)

16 September 2020

Kacche kele ke kebab

 Had some extra Raw bananas leftover after Mahalaya daan. Overdone the Podimaas and roasted sabjis. This was a long pending one on my bucket list. So tried Kacche kele ke kebab the weekend. Super super super it turned out. And the recipe is simple too. Here we go...


Ingredients :

2 raw bananas

1 -2 medium potatoes, boiled and peeled

2 Green chilies (medium), finely chopped

1 tbsp Cornstarch

1 inch piece Ginger

Salt to taste

1/4 cup fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped

1 tsp Cumin seeds (Jeera)

1 tsp Black pepper powder (or Red chili powder)

1 tsp Garam masala (optional)

Bread crumbs or crushed Oats for coating

Oil to shallow fry

Note: You can also add methi leaves if you have and/or chopped Banana flowers


1. Pressure cook the bananas upto 1 whistle. De-skin and mash them

2. Add the boiled, peeled potatoes and mash them as well.

3. Add the rest of the ingredients (except oil) and mix well. Check for taste.

4. Heat oil for shallow frying on medium flame. Divide the kebab mixture into equal portions. Roll in bread crumbs. I personally prefer crushed oats. The texture is so good.

5. Drop the kebabs into the oil and let cook on low-medium flame till golden brown on both sides.

6. Remove and drain excess oil. Serve hot.

15 July 2020

Dosa with Leftover Rice

Our Moms and Grandmoms have always nailed it when it comes to making the best of leftovers and not letting anything go waste. Agree? Here's a simple Dosa recipe made with leftover rice.


Ingredients: (Makes about 9-10 dosas)
Leftover rice - 1 cup
Sooji - 1 cup
Yogurt - 1 cup
Curry leaves - a few (optional)
Green chilies - 1 medium (optional)
Salt to taste

1. Whisk together Sooji and yogurt. Blend it along with the cooked rice, curry leaves and green chili in a mixer to a smooth batter.
2. Let the batter rest for at least 2 hours before use.
3. After the resting period, add a little salt and whisk the batter well. Add water to adjust consistency.
4. Prepare dosas as you always do.
Serve with Ginger chutney

Ginger Chutney:
1.5 inches Ginger, roughly chopped
2 dried red chilies
Urad dal/Black gram - 1 tbsp
Tamarind  - 1 small lemon size
Salt to taste
Oil - 1/2 tsp
Jaggery - 1 tsp (optional)

1. Heat oil in a small pan and roast ginger, red chilies and Urad dal till the dal is golden brown.
2. Add the tamarind bits in the end and saute a little. Let cool a bit.
3. Grind to a smooth chutney in a blender along with salt to taste and jaggery (optional).
Check for salt and serve with any dish of choice.

23 June 2020

Atte Ke Namak Pare

Perfect season for crisps and what better than homemade fried food isn't it :)
Try this recipe for Whole Wheat flour salted biscuits or Namak Pare as they are called.

Atta Namak Pare

Atta - 1 cup
Sooji - 1 tbsp
Hot oil - 3 tbsps
Salt to taste
Ajwain - 1/4 tsp
Black pepper powder - 1/4 tsp
Water as required
Oil for frying

1. Mix together the dry ingredients.
2. Add hot oil and mix again for a crumbly mixture but that holds shape to an extent.
3. Add enough water to make a stiff dough.
4. Heat oil for frying on medium flame.
5. Divide dough into equal portions.
6. Roll out into thin rotis nd cut out strips of desired shapes.
7. Drop them into the oil and fry till golden brown.
Drain excess oil and store in an air-tight container.

24 May 2020

Spicy Mango Curry

Come summer and it's unquestionably Mango time :) And also when pictures and videos of Poori-Aamras start making the rounds.
Luckily got hold of some good mangoes amidst this Lockdown so thought of ticking that box. But wanted to try something different. That's when I remembered the Mangalorean delight - Ambe Upkari.
This Mango curry is not the same but inspired by it.
If you are using the Sugar Baby Mango, then take 4-5 for this recipe, whole, not chopped. I had the Badami so roughly chopped and used it.
Here's my recipe..


For the Spice Paste
1 tbsp Coriander seeds (Dhaniya)
1 tsp Cumin seeds (Jeera)
2-3 Medium Dry Red Chilies
1 tsp Black Peppercorns (Kali Mirch)
1 tsp Fenugreek seeds (Methi)
2 tbsps Coconut, grated
1 inch piece of Ginger

Main Ingredients:
1 Ripe Mango, medium size, chopped into big pieces ( I used Badami, if using smaller mangoes, take 3-5, whole not chopped)
1 cup Mango puree
1 Medium potato, Boiled, peeled & chopped
1-2 tsps Tamarind (Imli) paste
Salt to taste
1 tsp Kashmiri (or normal) Red chili powder

For Tempering
1 tbsp Oil
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
2 medium Dry Red Chilies
A few Curry leaves

1. Dry roast the ingredients for spice paste, except for grated coconut and ginger. Add the Methi seeds towards the end and take care not to over-roast it. Remove from flame and let cool.

2. Grind to a smooth paste along with grated Coconut and ginger using a little water. Keep aside.

3. Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds. Once they splutter add the red chilies and curry leaves. Saute a bit.

4. Add the ground spice paste, a little water and fry for 2-3 minutes on low-medium heat. Drop in the chopped boiled potatoes, add red chili powder and salt to taste and mix well. Cover cook for 5-6 minutes till spices coat potatoes well.

5. Keep the flame low, add the mango puree and little water more (about 1/4 cup) to adjust consistency. Stir well and check for salt and spice. If too sweet, add a little more chili powder to suit your taste.

6. Finally add Imli paste and stir. Cover-cook on low heat for 3-4 minutes. Remove from flame and serve hot with Roti/Poori or Rice too.