Saturday, April 26, 2008

Straight Out Of Puck's Oven # 2 : Twice Fried Rice

Welcome to the second edition of my weekly series - 'Straight Out of Puck's Oven' and here I present a rice dish - 'Twice Fried Rice' from Puck's cookbook - "The Wolfgang Puck Cookbook: Recipes from Spago, Chinois, and Points East and West".



Its a versatile dish and one can jazz it up with any kind of veggies that are in season. This is definitely one such Puck's recipes which can stimulate your appetite and would want you for more and being a huge veggie lover, I thoroughly enjoyed it...:)

Ingredients

2 cups Rice (Recommended: Long Grain Rice)
4 cups of Vegetable Stock
Salt to taste
Veggies I added- Cauliflower, Green Beans, Broccoli, Tomatoes (Original Recipe: Napa Cabbage, Mushrooms, Green and Red Bell Peppers and Snow Peas)
1/2 Onion - thinly sliced (my addition)
1 to 2 tablespoons Olive Oil (Recommended: Peanut oil)
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup soy sauce

Note: The original recipe asked for 1/4 cup of Soya sauce for 1 cup of Rice. But, I don't like the strong, pungent taste of Soya Sauce, so I halved it.

Preparation:

1. Place the rice in a saucepan and add the stock and salt. Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce the heat, cover and cook slowly for 15 to 18 minutes. It is important to cook the rice until dry. Turn the rice out onto a large platter or baking sheet and let it air dry for up to an hour. (or) Place the rice on a baking sheet and dry it in the oven at 200 degrees F for 30 minutes, stirring two or three times with a fork. I followed the latter option as its much quicker.

2. Take a fork and thoroughly fluff the rice.

3. Heat a wok or large skillet until it is very hot, pour the oil in around the edges, and then stir fry all the vegetables for a minute. Add rice and continue to stir fry for another 30 seconds. Pour the egg in around the edges of the wok or skillet and quickly stir it into the rice and vegetables.

4. Finally, stir in the soy sauce. Cook for couple of minutes. Serve hot with the choice of side dish!



Off this goes to Kalyn's Weekend Herb Blogging, this week guest hosted by Coffee and Vanilla.

Have a great weekend ahead folks!

Related posts:

Straight Out of Puck's Oven # 1: Couscous Salad


- Siri

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

MBP: Pateta-par-Eeda


'Pateta-par-Eada' is definitely one of the yummiest one-pot dish I had in a very long time. Its sumptuous and you just need nothing else as a side dish as 'this has it all' !!!

In Nupur's words:

"It is a Parsee recipe called Pateta par Eeda. "Pateta" as in potato, "Eeda" as in egga and "par" as in "upon which" (approximately). So it is basically eggs on top of potatoes.

The Parsees are a small but vibrant community that fled from Persia and settled in India several centuries ago. They are followers of Zoroastrianism and worshipers of fire. Their tiny community is astonishingly successful and much-admired for its philanthropic spirit. Parsee food is rich in meats and eggs and represents an amalgamation of Persian and South-Asian cooking styles. One of the favorite Parsee styles of breakfast foods includes pan-frying a variety of vegetables (leftovers work fine), pressing them down in the pan, then making wells and cracking eggs into it for a quick brunch dish. This one is my absolute favorite..."

... and now it became our favorite too!! Thanks Nupur for sharing such a gorgeous looking recipe and Off this goes to this month's MBP: One pot wonders initiated by Coffee, this month guest hosted by Pavani of Cook's Hideout.

Hop on to Nupur's blog to check out the recipe. and here is how my 'Pateta-par-Eada' looked like...


*Eeda on Pateta*



*Served Hot!!*


Enjoii!!

- Siri

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Bell Pepper stuffed with Black eye bean filling

The soul of typical Mexican cooking lies with the infinite number of *peppers* they have. Sweet or spicy, they are as brilliant as glistening jewels when fresh, but turn darkly mysterious, hinting at complexity and nuance when dried...:D

So, when Dhivs of Culinary Bazaar announced her A.W.E.D event with a Mexican theme, I knew whats my first entry would be - PEPPERS!!
Off I went for pepper-hunting last weekend. My initial idea was to get some Poblano peppers, but I ended up with some gorgeous looking - Green Bell Peppers.


...in Mexican cuisine, I love Grilled Stuffed Chili Rellenos and this was a perfect opportunity to try them out (for the first time.. yipeee) in my kitchen and of course to impress some souls around.. hehhee..:D


I made few variations from the original recipe, made it more spicy (hey! we all love spicy food, don't we..:D ). The recipe called for some baked beans, instead I used some black eye beans (my favorite of all beans) with shredded potato!!! The taste was absolutely divine and I am so sure that I would end up making this dish again and again! All thanks to Dhivya's Worldly Delight, I have got to try something new and delish!!!

Adapted from here

Ingredients:

2 Green Bell Peppers
2 tbsp Olive Oil
1/2 cup fat-free shredded Cheddar Cheese

For the bean filling:

1 can Black eye beans
2 jalapeño peppers
1/4 cup chopped Onion
2 cloves of Garlic (grated)
3 tbsp crushed Tomatoes
1/2 cup shredded Potatoes (boiled and peeled)
1 tbsp Red Paprika
Salt to taste
Fresh Cilantro

Preparation:

Cut the bell peppers into two halves, remove the seeds. Preheat the oven for 300 deg.
Rub some olive oil on the peppers and bake them for 8-10 minutes.

To prepare the filling, in a wok, heat oil, add garlic, chopped jalapeño peppers and onions. Saute until brown. Now add in crushed tomatoes and shredded potatoes. Mix well and cook for couple of minutes.
Finally add the cilantro, beans and season with salt and red paprika. Cook for 4-5 minutes until done. Turn off the heat and mix 1/2 the cheese into the mixture.

Spoon the mixture into the baked peppers.



Sprinkle the left over cheese on the stuffed bell peppers.



Preheat the oven fro 375 deg and bake these for about 10-15 mins until the cheese melts.



To make it a sumptuous dinner bit, I served these with some Coriander flavored rice - Just dropped in few fresh Cilantro leaves with a tsp of oil and some salt while cooking up rice.


Stuffed Peppers served with Coriander flavored Rice

Hope you have a great week ahead!!

- Siri

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Straight Out Of Puck's Oven # 1: Couscous Salad

Wondering whats the title is all about? - 'Straight Out Of Puck's Oven'.

Prologue:


Wolfgang Puck is one of the popular chef restaurateurs in America and presides over a US$ 300 million food empire, which includes everything from restaurants and catering to prepared foods and pots and pans. He is well-known for his remarkable restaurants, including the famous Spago restaurants, Chinois on Main, Postrio, Granita, Trattoria del Lupo, and the Wolfgang Puck Cafes. Some of his famous cookbooks include 'Modern French Cooking for the American Kitchen' , 'The Wolfgang Puck Cookbook' , 'Adventures in the Kitchen with Wolfgang Puck' , 'Pizza, Pasta and More!' and 'Live, Love, Eat' .
The Austrian-born Puck is well-known for blending French flavors with American style of cooking which soon became a phenomenonal success and also Puck, re-defined the modern day American whimsical casual dining saga.

I first got to know about this culinary legend through Food Network's Chefography and soon became a huge fan of his innovative and inventive recipes.
Inspired by them, I thought of starting a weekly series which features some of Puck's vegetarian recipes (mine being a vegetarian blog!) and its aptly named - "Straight Out of Puck's Oven".
Also all of my recipes from Puck's book go to Kalyn's Weekend Herb Blogging, as a token of admiration and appreciation for her dedicated effort toward food blogging. :)). and Tadah..this week's recipe is..

Straight Out of Puck's Oven # 1: Couscous Salad
-----------------------------------------------------------------





Adapted from here - a vegetarian oven-baked version.

Ingredients:
  • 1 Eggplant
  • 1 Green Bell Pepper
  • 1 Tomato (unseeded and then chopped!)
  • 1/2 Cucumber
  • 5 oz Couscous
  • 1 1/2 cup of Vegetable stock
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Fresh Cilantro

Preparation:

Any kind of veggies would go perfectly well with this salad. Chop all the veggies and take them in a shallow baking dish.Sprinkle some olive oil and season the veggies with salt and pepper.



Preheat oven at 375 deg and bake the veggies for about 10-12 minutes. Bring the stock to a boil. Add couscous to it and cover it up for 5 minutes.
Fluff couscous with a fork and mix in the baked veggies.



Garnish with fresh cilantro and Serve.


Off this goes to this week's WHB host: lovely Susan, 'The Well Seasoned Cook'.

Have a great Sunday ahead!

- Siri

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Oven Baked Paneer Shingaras





A Shingara is a Bengali samosa, consisting of vegetables such as cauliflower or potatoes, all nicely spiced, wrapped in a triangular pastry, and deep fried.


But, I didn't make these - the traditional way. Here's how I made them....

Ingredients:

For Shingaras

1 cup All purpose flour
3 tbsp Oil
1/2 tsp Salt
Oil

For Paneer Filling

1 cup Grated Paneer
1/2 cup boiled Potato - grated
Salt - to taste
1 tsp Red Chilli powder
1 tsp Garam Masala
1/4 tsp Turmeric
2 Green Chillies - finely chopped
Fresh Cilantro leaves - chopped

Preparation:

For a detailed pictorial version of making Shingaras: Click here.

and the paneer filling is made by mixing all the ingredients listed above.

Verdict:

Instead of deep frying these Shingaras, I oven baked them and served with some tamarind chutney. Preheat the oven for 400 deg and then on a baking sheet, arrange the prepared Shingaras, reduce the oven temperature to 300 deg and bake for about 45 mins. Look for them at regular intervals and flip them as and when necessary.

The oven baked Shingaras were very crispy and yummy. But, I must confess that I like the deep fried version more... Oh gosh, what about the extra calories?? Guess, I have to exercise a bit more to afford them!..:D.



Off these go to Sandeepa's RCI:Bengal event..:)

- Siri

Monday, April 14, 2008

Blogger Appreciation Day - Thank U all!

April 14th is [unofficially] celebrated as 'Blogger Appreciation Day'.

In Darren's words,

I’ve been chatting with a few bloggers of late who’ve been feeling a little down in the dumps about their blogging - so perhaps everyone could do with a little lift.

Lets spend today doing a few random acts of kindness and encouragement for our fellow bloggers.

I’m not writing this in the hope of getting more emails myself (I’ve got my share for today already) - but instead want to encourage you to take a moment to email another blogger and to thank them for something that you’ve appreciated about what they’ve done lately. In a sense it’s a ‘Pay it Forward’ exercise.

We’re in it together, blogging is about collaboration and together going further than we can by ourselves - so why not help another blogger today by shooting them a word of encouragement, a pep talk, a congratulations, an idea to help them improve or some other positive constructive message. Better still, do it publicly on your blog and tell the world about another blogger who you appreciate.”

- an excerpt from his post earlier today.





One thing I would truly cherish from my 8-month long blogging is my friendship with this wonderful person, so sweet, so lovable that she even managed to write an impromptu poem on me. Thank you sweety!

People come and go
The magic of life is so

But rare few make a mark
And shine they do among the surroundings dark

One among the few is you
Oh Siri - U r the best amongst my friends - so wonderful and soooooo true!


I would like to take this opportunity to thank her for brightening up my dull, boring days with her contagious smile (or should I say giggle!..:D).

Thanks Sailu for letting us all know about such a day - an entire day dedicated to say 'Thank You' to all you wonderful folks out there who appreciate my work with your sweet comments, invite to your blogs and effortlessly whip up appetizing dishes for all of us - every single day.

Wishing all of my co-bloggers a very happy and blissful life ahead and Happy Sri Rama Navami. May God shine all of his blessings on us.

Image Source

- Siri

Happy Sri Rama Navami



When the evil forces reign supreme, the Lord will come to the rescue and set things right. Sri Rama Navami marks the birth of Lord Rama, the seventh incarnation of Lord Vishnu. From Ugadi for the next 9 days, we celebrate the 'Vasantha Navarathri'. Sri Rama Navami marks its conclusion. The goodies we typically make on this day are Panakam, Vadapappu, Buttermilk and Panchamrutham.

On such an auspicious day, I wish you all a very Happy Sri Rama Navami.


Image Source: chinnajeeyar.org

- Siri

Brown Rice Vegetable Pilaf

Do you know the fact that just 1 cup of brown rice provide about 88% of daily value for manganese, which in turn helps produce energy from protein and synthesizes the fatty acids. How about, if I say one who eats brown rice over white rice will weigh less ..Interesting huh?

A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition underscores the importance of choosing whole grains such as brown rice rather than refined grain, i.e., white rice, to maintain a healthy body weight. In this Harvard Medical School / Brigham and Women's Hospital study, which collected data on over 74,000 female nurses aged 38-63 years over a 12 year period, weight gain was inversely associated with the intake of high-fiber, whole-grain foods but positively related to the intake of refined-grain foods. Not only did women who consumed more whole grains consistently weigh less than those who ate less of these fiber-rich foods, but those consuming the most dietary fiber from whole grains were 49% less likely to gain weight compared to those eating foods made from refined grains.

[Source: WHFoods]


Such is the goodness of brown rice which typically takes a back seat when compared to white rice especially in our Indian households. (Correct me, if I am wrong!).

Once I knew, how to cook brown rice- the right way, brown rice became an integral part of our diet and here is one recipe which often included in our usual menu...



Ingredients:

2 cups Brown Rice
1 medium Onion (chopped)
2 Green Bell Peppers
1 tbsp All spice powder (Substitute: Garam Masala/Biryani Masala)
3.5 cups of Vegetable stock
Salt to taste
2-3 cloves of Garlic
PAM spray (or) 2 tsp Oil

How to prepare:

1. In a pan, bring vegetable stock to a boil and cook brown rice, coveredL with the stock. When done, let it rest for 5mins , fluff the rice and Keep aside.

2. Heat some oil in a wok, add garlic and chopped onion. Cook for 3-4 mins on medium heat until golden brown. Now, add in chopped bell peppers. Stir the contents well and cook for few mins.

3. Season the mixture with salt and all spice powder.



4. Preheat the oven to 300 deg. In a baking dish, layer the rice at its bottom and then spread the vegetable mixture evenly. Cover it with foil and bake for 10-15 mins.

5. When baked, toss up the contents well. To give it a cheesy flavor, one can sprinkle some Parmesan cheese and bake for 5 more mins until the cheese melts.

6. Serve hot.

The choice of veggies is entirely optional and I just had some left over bell peppers and onions in my pantry, so used just that. The goodness of the veggies make this dish, an excellent and nutritious One pot meal.



This week's Weekend Herb Blogging, initiated by wonderful Kalyn arrives at Jugalbandi. Off my Brown Rice Vegetable Pilaf goes to dynamic duo - Bee and Jai!

Also Enjoi:

Baked Broccoli Rice Supreme

- Siri

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Pesara Appachi

'Pesalu' in Telugu is 'Green Gram' in English. 'Pesarattu' is a very famous Andhra dish and its been a favorite for almost every 'Andhraite' except me...For some reason, I hated the smell of whole green gram, so most of the time, this breakfast item was off my list.



Just a couple of days back, I was watching this cookery show on Maa tv ( a telugu channel) - 'Ma Voori Vanta' (meaning 'Food from our Town/Village'.. hehehe.. I am so bad at translating..:D) and the lady made a yummy 'Pesara Appachi'. The recipe was indeed very quick, simple and believe me extremely healthy...:) As I googled a bit more, I found one more version of Appachi, which I would like to try later.

Ingredients:

1 cup raw Green Gram(Pesalu)
3/4 cup raw Rice
1 medium Onion (chopped)
few Green Chillies
Salt to taste
2 tbsp shredded Coconut (this is my inclusion for some extra taste!)
Freshly grated Ginger and Garlic (acc to one's taste)
Red Chilli Powder (optional)
Water
some Oil

Preparation:

1. Grind the raw green gram and rice into a coarse (rava-like) powder. The lady of the show didn't bother to soak them at all, so I followed the same and surprisingly, even I didn't feel that soaking was necessary. If you would like to, you can try soaking both of them for some time.

2. Now, add in all the other ingredients listed above and make into a coarse batter like consistency adding little water (not like our usual dosa batter). Rest this mixture for about 15mins, covered.



3. Heat a pan, put 1 tsp of oil on it. Take a big ball of appachi mixture and put that in the middle of the pan. Spread it into a dosa, by tapping with your fingers starting from the middle till edges. Make sure the thickness is even so that it cooks properly.

4. On medium flame, cover the appachi with a lid and let it cook for 3-4 mins until the bottom is golden brown. Repeat the same on the other side too.

5. Serve immediately with coconut chutney and karappodi..yummy!!!

Note: This by itself is very heavy breakfast and the appachis, when cold don't taste that good. ..:)



Off this goes to Srivalli's Dosa Mela!!

A FUN READ...


- Siri

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Who am I ?? - Revealed!!

I asked you to guess and you, wonderful folks came up with answers of almost all kinds - drumsticks to mushrooms!..:D... and here is folks.. the RIGHT ANSWER!!

Before that.. let me give a small gist of who all guessed it right!!

...On the whole, there were some correct answers by - First by,Dhivya, who 'personally' emailed me
the answer,

Dhivya said:

"Fried Capsicum / Fried Brinjal....Fried Brinjal in some curry sauce more so ...:D"


then its Sia who commented as:

"its capsicum or eggplant :)"

and finally, Ranji said:

"looks like some kind of manchurian...eggplant??".
.
No dear, its not a manchurian!!..:)

...But the bingo answer was by Anuzi, who correctly guessed at one shot!

"I think it maybe Egg plant. I can't imagine what else it could be. But I am extremely curious."

Great Job buddy!!..

...Saswati for close enough, by calling it a Chinese dish! Yes, it is one!!..:)






...and the correct answer is...............'Fried Eggplant dipped in Garlic Sauce!'





I was surprised when the waiter got this for me. I actually asked him -

" I am sorry! I think you got me a wrong dish!".

But, he was like -

"No madam! It is Eggplant with Garlic Sauce!"...;)

I must say, it tasted incredibly tasty and for 7 bucks he gave so much, that I had to get some as a takeout!. Hmmmm, cool huh?
In a nutshell, it was a lovely candle light evening for us with some yummy Chinese food on the table!...:D

Hope you all enjoied playing this Guessing Game as much as I did!

Thanks all for you participation and May you all have a lovely week ahead!

Siri

Monday, April 7, 2008

Sarvadharinama Samvatsara Ugadi Subhakanshalu

Source: APFAMGS


Wishing you all a very Happy and Joyous Ugadi.


A guessing game is on...Wanna play along?

Siri

Who am I ??

Yesterday, we went to try out a new restaurant nearby our place and I ordered this dish. I was totally surprised when this finally arrived our table. ..:)..

Can you guess whats this dish??..:)).. will raise the curtain after 24hrs and update the post with the names who correctly guessed it!

...till then keep guessing folks!!



P.S: Its a meatless dish! and No 'Anonymous' comments please!

Related posts: Who am I?? - Revealed!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Dosa 101 with Coconut Chutney and Dosa Podi

"So much to do, so little done, such things to be."

- Lord Alfred Tennyson 1809-1892, British Poet

For me, cooking is a journey where you have no idea whats gonna happen next?.. Confused??. I mean, one has no idea whether the *outcome* would be good or bad..in spite of that known, we always try .. put in our best to get the dish right..

...'Making a Dosa' is one such a thingy for me since a long time. . Hey, I always had these instant dosas.. which are so cool and damn easy. Though, I started *proper cooking* (..not bachelor cooking) just a couple of months back, I never dared to venture into the *DOSA* area.

What if the batter turns out too thin ?

What if they taste bad and I end up throwing up?

What if...

What if...

Thanks to Srivalli's Dosa Mela which pushed me to actually soak some rice and grind to make my first ever dosa...

....drumroll please...

Tada Tadah...Here I present people .. 'MY FIRST DOSA'... Yey Yey!!!



I was super happy when they turned out good and my happiness had no bounds when I put the first piece (dipped in coconut chutney) into my mouth..:D

Ok guys.. enuf of my rambling, I will get to the recipe first. my mom also sent me this amazing 'Dosa podi' recipe which tasted just out of this world..

Dosa Batter:
-------------

3 cups of rice
1 cup split urad daal
1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds
Salt to taste

How to make:

1. Soak rice, urad dal with fenugreek seeds overnight.
2. Next morning, drain the water and grind to a smooth-slightly grainy paste, adding little amount of water.
3. Pour the paste into a bowl and add enough water to make a batter.
Consistency test: The batter should thickly coat a spoon dipped into it..:D
4. Now add salt and keep the batter aside, covered for an hour.
5. Heat a nonstick pan and spread the batter and make our usual dosas out of it!!
6. I served with some coconut chutney and dosa podi.

Coconut chutney:
-----------------

1 cup shredded coconut
2-3 Green chillies
1/4 cup Roasted Chickpeas (dalia/putnalu)
small Ginger very finely chopped

For tampering:

1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tbsp urad daal
2 dry red chillies
5-6 curry leaves
Salt to taste
2 tbsp oil

Preparation:

1. Grind all the ingredients listed (except for 'Tampering) into a fine/coarse paste in a food processor. Add water if desired.
2. Heat oil in a small pan and add in the tampering ingredients.
3. Add to the coconut paste and stir the contents well.



Dosa Podi:
----------

1 cup Fried, skin removed Peanuts
1 cup Roasted Chickpeas (putnalu)
2 tbsp Fried Coriander seeds
2 tbsp Jeera/ Cumin seeds
3-4 Red Chillies
1/2 tsp Fenugreek seeds
1/2 tsp sugar
Salt - to taste
2-3 Crushed dry garlic (for flavor)

How to make:

Mix all the above listed ingredients and Powder them into a coarse powder in a grinder. Store it in an air-tight container to stay fresh months.

Recipe Source: My Mom..:)



Hope you all enjoied my 'DOSA' adventure. Any suggestions/tips/tricks to make yummier dosas are always welcome. To keep safe them, I will update this post with ur tips. Being an amateur in making these, I would love to incorporate them next time around..:))



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Friday, April 4, 2008

Four Foods On Friday # 23

I am all set to play my second 'Four Foods on Friday # 23' Meme where we answer 'Four' yummy questions posed by Valerie.

Here are this week's questions...

1) American cheese. Sliced fresh or prepackaged processed cheese product?

I love love 'cheese' of any form and type. and prefer pre-packaged American cheese singles as they are easy to store and manage. Pop in a slice of American cheese between two toasted bread slices.. Vollah.. U have an amazing Cheese Sandwich!!

2) What is your favorite cracker?

My favorite cracker is CROSTINI flavored with some garlic, hummus and bell peppers.. yummy..!! These a little Italian bread toasts usually served as appetizers. For a simple crostini recipe, click here.

3) What hot breakfast cereal do you like? Think oatmeal, farina, grits, etc.

I prefer having some apple-cinnamon oatmeal and cornflakes with hot milk as my breakfast..:D

4) Share a recipe that uses corn.

Corn Kebabs
-------------------

Ingredients:

1 cup cooked corn
2 medium-sized boiled potatoes
Salt to taste
2 tbsp Corn flour
Grated ginger and garlic - as per taste
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
1/2 tsp Allspice powder
Oil to fry
Fresh Coriander leaves

Preparation:

1. Mash all the ingredients in a mixing bowl.
2. Make small flattened (kebab-shaped) balls out of the mixture.
3. Heat oil and deep fry these kebabs.
4. Drain excess oil using a paper towel and Serve hot with ketchup!!

Wanna check out my first FFOF ...click here.

Enjoii and Have a great weekend ahead!!




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Wednesday, April 2, 2008

My favorite combination - Broad Beans n Eggplant !!



This is probably *the best* combination of veggies I ever had ( Ok, I hear some saying - NO WAY!!. Some do have a love-hate relationship with this curry! ).
... But, I love the subtle and beany flavor of Indian broad beans ( a.k.a Chikkudukaya/ Surti lilva) combined with that of Eggplant, which gives a very different and distinct flavor to this dish. Believe me, ever since my mama made this dish for me ( probably when I was in my 5th standard...), the entire bowl of this curry made is JUST FOR ME...!!! After I came to US, I hardly could find some fresh beans, Thanks to *frozen food*, I quickly grabbed a pack of frozen beans last weekend and made my favorite curry, almost an year later...!! Served with hot rice and a dollop of ghee, the taste of this curry enhances multi fold...:DDD

Ingredients:

1 frozen pack of Indian Broad Beans
4-5 medium sized Eggplant
2-3 tsp Oil
2-3 cloves of Garlic
3/4 tsp Red Chilli powder
Salt to taste
1/4 tsp Turmeric
fresh coriander leaves
3 tbsp grated coconut (optional, but enhances taste!)

For Tadka/Seasoning:

1 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tsp Urad dal
1 tsp Jeera/Cumin seeds
a pinch of hing/asafoetida
few red chillies



How to prepare:

1. Heat some oil in a pan, add in all the ingredients listed for 'Tadka' one by one until they splutter. Add the finely chopped garlic and saute until brown.
2. Then add in frozen beans ( which infuses some moisture into the curry) and let them cook for 2 mins until soft. Later, add the chopped eggplant and let the veggies cook for a while.
3. Season with salt, turmeric and red chilli powder. Mix the contents well.
4. Finally sprinkle some grated coconut over the top and cook for 2 more mins.



I served this dish with hot rice and spicy eggplant discs!! Yumm-O..:)

There are many variations to this curry, Some add jaggery, sesame seeds/powder, mustard powder etc etc. But, I like to have this basic curry as I don't want to add in stuff which can overpower the distinct taste of my beans!

I love the addition of garlic to this dish. So, off this goes to JFI: Garlic hosted by dear Mathy!

- Siri

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Storytime # 5 : Who is my favorite devotee?

One day Devarishi Narada, the wandering sage went up to Lord Vishnu and asked him who his favorite devotee was. Now as we all know, Narada is a great Vishnu bhakt. So strong is his devotion that he punctuates every sentence with the famous words, “Narayana, Narayana”. Narayana is one of the many names of Vishnu, as we all know.

Narada was sure that there was no one comparable with him when it came to devotion to Vishnu. So when Narada questioned Him, Vishnu replied thus,” There is a good farmer on earth to whom I am dearer than his very life, I choose him.”

Narada was shocked to hear this. His pride was broken and the words stung him. But he quickly regained his composure and said, “If that is so, I would like to test him.”

“By all means”, said Vishnu smiling kindly.

Narada arrived at the doorstep of the farmer’s hut. It was afternoon and the farmer had just come home. He stopped at the door, took the Lord’s name and went in. After eating and refreshing himself the farmer went back to the fields. He returned at dusk and again remembered the Lord before entering the house. Next morning the farmer prayed to the Lord before leaving for work.

Narada was keenly counting. He observed that the farmer took the Lord’s name only three times during the day – before going to the fields in the morning, before eating food in the afternoon and after returning from his field at dusk. So why did Vishnu call him his favorite devotee?

He was puzzled. On returning to the Heavens Narada asked Vishnu. Vishnu was expecting this.

He said, “Narada, before I answer you, I have some work that only you can do.” He handed him a bowl filled to the brim with oil and asked him to walk around the earth once without dropping any oil. “Not a single drop must fall, Narada”, Vishnu reminded him.

Source: Bolokids


Narada went away to do as he was bid. Understandably he took a long time to finish the task.

“So how many times did you remember me while walking around the earth, “asked Vishnu, when Narada got back him “Not once,” replied Narada, with some hesitation. “I was so engrossed in doing the work you assigned to me, that I completely forgot to take your name.”

“Narada, the farmer’s work is also given by me to him. He has many responsibilities, and he fulfills them all but still remembers me.” Vishnu said.

Narada was ashamed, “That is true,” he said, with his head down.

Vishnu explained, “Those who remember me while doing their duties are dearer to me than those who set aside all work and chant my name day and night.”

- A story by Sujata C

Source: Bolokids

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