Saturday, July 08, 2006

Garden Project 2 - Peas

This is the first year I ever saw fresh pea pods. So when I first saw it, I was mesmerized by its freshness, so I bought a lot of peas. The sweetness of the fresh peas is amazing. I had some left over pea pods sitting in the refrigerator for few days and its sprouted by itself. So I kept it in little bit of soil to see what happens. Only out of curiosity, never had any plans for big harvest. Because like any other seed, I thought you should let the seed mature in the plant, dry in the sun, before you want to germinate and grow.


In couple of days everything is germinated well.


After a week... still in yogurt box, I think it deserves atleast a small container...


In containers... Do you see the small vines coming out?


After a month.... Look at these pretty white flowers.

Young and mature pods. I still can’t believe I grew this one. ;) It is time to munch some.

It only takes 50 days to get mature pods, next year I have plans for a big patch.

O.k guys, I am off to cook some wonderful dishes with my own peas. :)

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Eggplant curry - Kathirikkai Pulikkulambu

Who wouldn't love spicy pulikkulambu, pair it with dal and papad, it is a fulfilling menu. Especially if you have access to pinju kathirikkai/tender eggplant it is gonna be even tastier. Hope my plants will give enough brinjals soon. :)


Ingredients

Brinjal/eggplant - 6 to 8
Onion small size - 1 chopped
Garlic - 5 cloves chopped
Green chillies - 5 chopped
Tomato - 2 chopped
Tamarind - cherry size
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Red chilli powder - 1 tsp
Sambar powder - 1 tsp
Brown Sugar - 1 tsp
Oil - 1tblspn
Salt to taste.

For Tempering

Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Urid,channa dal - 1 tsp
Curry leaves - few
Methi seeds - 1/2 tsp
Asafoetida/perungayam - a pinch

Directions
  1. Cut the eggplants into bite size pieces and keep it in a bowl of water till you cook to prevent turning brown/bitter.
  2. Temper the ingredients and add chopped green chillies, onion, garlic. Saute it in the same oil till it turns light brown.
  3. Add chopped tomato, fry well and add brinjal, sambar powder,chilli powder, turmeric, salt, sugar and tamarind.
  4. Pour a cup of water let it simmer in medium heat till it cooked. Serve hot with rice.

Note: You can substitute eggplant with okra, bittergourd, sweetpotato. If you have tried with any other vegetable, I would love to hear and experiment too. :)

Links : Anthony's Curry Mela

Thursday, June 29, 2006

White Roses

From my Garden to yours...
Click the photo for a larger image.














Tag World Confessions

Thank you Sudha, Krithika, Vaishali for tagging me. Here is my list...

5 items in my Freezer

Chochlate icecream bars
Frozen peas, drumsticks, french beans
Ice cubes
Garlic bread
Puff pastries

5 items in my Car

Maps
Hard candy
Umbrella
Fresbees
Water

5 items in my Purse

Lipstick
Mobile
Credit, debit cards, cash
Driver license
Library card, grocery card, health cards

5 items in my Closet

Salwars, Sarees
Pants, Capris
Skirts
Tees
Shorts

I would like to tag Santhi, L.G, Indira, Archana, Vineela, Lera, RP, Kitchenmate, Indiandoc, Yum, Sumitha, and
all who would like to play this meme.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Cooking from fellow bloggers- Peas Rice

Jeera Rice with Peas recipe from Myriad Tastes.
I have sprinkled some black pepper to make little bit spicier. Other than that I have followed her recipe exactly. Simple and delicious. Thanks for the wonderful recipe Lera, we loved it very much. Nice lunch box recipe too.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Pudalangai Poriyal - Snake Gourd Curry

My liking for this vegetable grew considerably after coming here. Not sure why, perhaps we don't see these often in stores so it could be the rare stuff thing. They started showing up only for the past couple of months near our place. You can make yummy dishes with 'em like pudalangai-thayir kulambu/ yogurt curry, sambar and so on. It is still a relatively costly vegetable in our stores, but sure tastes good.

[ washed, peeled, unpeeled snake gourds ]

[ Seeds scooped out and sliced thin ]

Ingredients:

Snake gourd/ Pudalangai - 2 sliced thin
Mustard Seeds - 1 tsp
Urid Dal - 1 tsp
Red Chillies - 5
Sambar Powder - 1 tsp [optional]
Onion (medium size) - 1 chopped
Curry leaves few
Oil - 1 tblspn
Salt to taste
Shredded coconut - 1 tblspn [optional]

Directions:
  1. Wash gourd and peel/scrape the outer skin with a knife. Cut lengthwise to scoop out seeds [they are not edible] and slice it thin as shown above.
  2. Heat oil in a pan and put mustard seeds and let it crackle. Add urid dal, curry leaves, red chilles, onion in the same order and saute it till it turns light golden brown in color.
  3. Add sliced gourd pieces, salt, sambar powder and mix everything; close the pan with a lid and let it cook in low-medium heat. You might want to add some shredded coconut.
  4. It is a good side dish for rice or any kind of bread.

Note: When I cook it with slow heat I don't add water. When you mix it with salt, gourd pieces yields enough water to cook it.
Here is Indiandoc's another nice version of snake gourd recipe, she listed out the medicinal uses too. Another good reason to love this vegetable.

Links: Anthony's Curry mela
Links: Cate's ARF/5-a-day Event.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Pasipparuppu Sadam - Lentil Rice

When you are in a hurry, you can prepare this one in no time. Dal and rice blend in nicely giving rise to wonderful taste. It is a one-pot wonder and a high protein meal too.


Ingredients

Basmathi Rice - 1 cup
Moong Dal - 1/2 cup
Onion (small size) - 1 chopped
Garlic - 7 cloves chopped
Green Chillies - 6
Red Chillies - 5
Tomato - 2 chopped
Turmeric Powder - 1 tsp
Butter or Ghee - 1 or 2 tblspn
Salt to taste

For Tempering

Mustard Seeds - 1 tsp
Urid Dal - 1 tsp
Curry Leaves - few
Cumin/Seeraham Seeds - 1 tsp
Fennel/Sombu Seeds- 1 tsp

Directions:
  1. Pour oil in a pan/cooker and add mustard seeds. Let it crackle and add urid dal, and curry leaves.
  2. Add cumin, fennel, and chilles one by one and allow it to fry in the same oil. [careful not to burn the cumin seeds, otherwise it goes bitter]
  3. Saute onion and garlic till they become light golden brown.
  4. Add chopped tomatoes, turmeric, butter, and salt to the mixture and cook until oil floats on the surface and then add moong dal and cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add rice and 3 cups of water and cook until it is done.

Note:
Dry roast moong dal (without oil) to a light golden color and soak it for 10 minutes in hot water before cooking. It will lead to soft dal texture, nice aroma and taste. You can add ghee while serving it instead of cooking with it. To get even richer paruppu sadam, add 1/2 a cup of coconut milk while cooking the dal. My mom adds scrapped coconut at the last stage. Yummy :-)

Links:
Paz's From My Rasoi - For the Love of Rice
Links: Anthony's curry mela

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Roses-Sunsprite

This is a floribunda rose named "Sunsprite". Bright yellow flowers has a strong scent and Hybrid Tea like flower form. The foliage is dark green and healthy. Couple of flowers is good enough to perfume a whole room and it blooms in clusters too. I bought it only couple of months ago and it is blooming ever since. It is a real winner. Hope you like it too. :-)













Monday, June 19, 2006

10 things I miss the most of my moms cooking

Thank you Sudha, Archana and Krithika for tagging me to participate in this wonderful event. In my college days I spent most of my time away from home and whenever I came home my mom always made murukku - my all time favorite. I miss you amma :-) Anyways, here is a list of things I miss from my mom's cooking the most:
  1. Murukku
  2. Pavvakkai/Bitter gourd Poriyal
  3. Chicken Rasam
  4. Chicken Varuval/fry
  5. Ragi Vada
  6. Santhavai/ Idiyappam
  7. Wheat Roti
  8. Coconut chutney
  9. Thandu/Banana stem Poriyal
  10. Drumstick/Murungaikai Varuval
And thank you Garam Masala for this thoughful idea.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Egg Paniyaram

Paniyarams are a tasty treat. It is somewhere between idli and dosa - soft on the inside and crispy on the outside. My family loves paniyaram very much. The other day, I was making paniyarams and started running low on batter. So, I mixed the remaining batter up with a couple of eggs. Oh boy! what a surprise!! the taste was amazing - I guess I didn't know what I was missing before this little adventure :-). From that day onwards I intentionally mix batter with eggs to make egg paniyarams!

[From Left to Right: Regular paniyaram, Puli/Tamarind Chutney, Peanut Chutney, Egg Paniyaram]

For Regular Paniyarams:
Season idli/dosa batter with tempered mustard seeds, urid dal, curry leaves, and few chopped onions. Pour batter mixture in paniyaram pan and cook to make regular paniyarams.


For Egg Paniyarams:
Mix the above seasoned paniyaram batter with 2 or 3 beaten eggs. Set the stove on low to medium heat. Add a few drops of oil in paniyaram pan and pour a heaping tablespoon of batter mixture in paniyaram pan. After a minute or two flip it and cook the other side. Egg Paniyarams are ready to be served.


[Note: All chutneys, sambars will go well with this paniyarams.]

Links: Anthony's curry mela.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Roses

Sorry guys, I didn't get a chance to write anything, instead I am presenting you something straight from my garden. I was thinking of selecting only couple of photos for this post, but I couldn't able to select one over the other because they are all look beautiful to my eyes. Click the photo for a larger image. Enjoy!
















This is a hybrid tea rose named "Rose Tiffany". It has an amazing fragrance. Growing roses is very exciting and rewarding too. :-)

Friday, June 09, 2006

Garden Project - 1

Tomato and Brinjal Seedlings

This is my first year into vegetable gardening. I started with some Indian brinjal and tomato seeds in paper cups in second week of April. Look what I found after 10 days...


Ideally each seed should be started in individual cups for easy planting and care. But I am a novice gardener and still learning a lot everyday. Speaking of learning, check this site for resources about how to grow and care for plants. It has separate galleries,forums for all the flowers and plants.

Three weeks later...

A month later...
I have planted them in containers around last week of May. They are all growing successfully.

Tomato plants in containers...
When you are planting, place the tomato seedling deep into the soil, clip-off the lower leaves and leave only the top leaves and branches. This will enable more roots to develope along the stem, speeding growth.

Brinjal plants in individual containers...

The green straws/stems are from methi greens. The stems act like mulch for the plants, saving these little ones from weeds and hot sun. I will update as it grows. Hope you enjoyed them as much as I did.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Quick Dinner - Tuna Sandwich

When I am too tired to cook this is an easy dinner at our home. I always keep tuna tins/packets handy. And tuna is a healthy food too, so I won't feel guilty of not preparing an elaborate meal. You can prepare this in no time. Pair it with a soup/salad/smoothie for a wholesome meal.


Ingredients:

6 ounce canned tuna, drained
4 slices bread
2 tablespoons minced onion
2 tablespoons minced bellpepper
1 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons shredded cheese
1 Tbsp. butter
black pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. In a small mixing bowl break up the tuna with a fork.
  2. Combine tuna, mayonnaise, onion, bellpepper, black pepper and cheese in small bowl and mix gently until combined.
  3. Glaze the grilling pan with butter. Spread the tuna mixture evenly on the pieces of bread.
  4. Grill sandwiches for 2-3 minutes, until bread is golden brown and cheese is melted. Yields 2 sandwiches.

Note: I use dosa pan for grilling, if you have a grill pan use it to have a wonderful grilling marks. You may add more cheese and mayo if you want. Toast it at low to medium heat to get golden crust on the sandwich.