Narthangai Rasam / Citron Rasam / Dabbakaya Rasam

As I mentioned in my Citron rice post, one of our relatives used to send citron and citron leaves from their backyard tree and it has been continuing even now. 😃 From this time batch, I made rice and rasam apart from making pickle.

I extracted the juice to use in this recipe and I used the peel to make pachadi. so, if you are making this recipe, make sure to save the peel for making pachadi. Do not waste the peel. Citron is the excellent source of immune boosting vitamin c. This rasam is best to consume during winter/cold or flu season.

I also made the Narthangai leaf powder using the leaves she sent. I will make a detailed post on it in few days.
I tried my level best to capture the cooking process as video and attached below. Please view and make sure to comment and subscribe it. Thank you!

Basic Information:
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time:10 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients:

For Grinding:

Black Pepper - 1 and 1/2 teaspoon
Cumin seeds - 1 teaspoon
Garlic cloves - 6
green chilli - 1
Curry leaves - 1 spring

For Rasam:

Narthangai / Citron - 1
Water - 3 to 4 cups
Tomato - 1 medium size
Coriander leaves - 2 tablespoons, chopped
Turmeric powder - 1/4 teaspoon
Salt - to taste
Asafoetida - a big pinch

For Seasoning:

Oil - 2 teaspoon2
Mustard seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Fenugreek seeds - 1/4 teaspoon
Curry leaves - 1 spring

Method:

1. Cut the citron into two and squeeze out the juice from it. Keep aside. I got 1/4 cup juice from 1 citron.
2. In a mixer jar, add all the ingredients given under "For Grinding" to a coarse powder. keep aside.
3. In sauce pan, add 3 and 1/2 cups of water. add chopped tomato, turmeric powder and 1 tablespoon coriander leaves
4. Using the hand, squeeze out the juice from tomato until you don't see any trace of tomato pulp.
5. Now, add in the ground ingredients to the tomato juice. mix well and place it on the stove.
6. Add salt. When it boils, turn off the flame, add rest of the coriander leaves,curry leaves and asafoetida.
7. Filter the seeds from citron juice and add it to the rasam. Mix well.
8. In a seasoning pan, heat oil. When it smokes, add the mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds and let it splutter. Add curry leaves and let it becomes crisp.
9. Add this seasoning to the rasam.
10. Serve hot with rice.
Note:

1) Adjust the water according to the sourness of the citron juice.
2) Make sure to add the citron juice only after turning off the flame.
3) If you are using eeya chatti(tin coated vessel) for making rasam, then no not roll boil the rasam but keep rasam in low flame till it is frothy and add the salt and citron juice at the end after turning the flame off.

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Dates, Peanut & Sesame Seeds Laddu

Dates-Peanut-Sesameseeds-Laddu-1
It is weekend and I planned to surprise my kid by cooking simple kid friendly recipes and engage her in other house help activities. My kid always loves to help me in baking and this time she helped me in mixing and rolling of these tiny laddus.

This laddu just uses three ingredients. All I did was just roasting the sesame seeds and groundnuts. Rest of the steps were taken care by my little madam and she was more interested in eating as she was helping me.

This laddu perfectly fit for a kid's snackbox and good way of gaining the health benefits from dates, Peanut and Sesame or till seeds.
Dates-Peanut-Sesameseeds-Laddu-2
Basic Information:
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Makes: 15 Amla Size Laddus

Dates-Peanut-Sesameseeds-Laddu-3
Here is the recipe video of the same. Please view and make sure to comment and subscribe it. Thank you!


Ingredients:

Dates – 25 numbers or 1 heaped cup
Peanuts – ½ cup
Til / Sesame seeds – ½ cup

Method:

1) Remove seeds from dates and mash well. If the dates are soft, the job is easy, otherwise just grind it in using a mixie for a second.
how-to-make-Dates-Peanut-til-Laddu-step1
2) Roast the peanuts, allow it to cool down. Later peel its skin. Later grind it to a coarse powder in a mixie.
how-to-make-Dates-Peanut-til-Laddu-step2
3) Roast the sesame seeds till nice aroma comes from it. Cool down.
how-to-make-Dates-Peanut-til-Laddu-step3
4) In a wide bowl, mix mashed dates, powdered peanuts and sesame seeds.
5) Mix it well using your hands and make equal size balls. The given quantity can make almost 15 Amla size balls.
how-to-make-Dates-Peanut-til-Laddu-step4
6) Store it in a dry, clean container. It will stay good in a room temperature for a week.
Dates-Peanut-til-Laddu-4

Notes:

1) If the laddu is not binding, feel free to add some more dates to it.
2) No need to add sugar. If you need some extra sweetness, add some honey to it.

Kalakkai Pickle / Karonda Pickle / Bengal Currant Pickle

Kalakkai-pickle-recipe
I grew up eating this kalakkai as my school time snack with salt and red chilli powder. Even now, the thought about itself, salivates me.

It has got a kind of very sour taste which looks green in colour when it is not ripe and reddish black in colour when it is ripe. It can be simply eaten with salt and red chilli or you can make other recipes like pickle, Dal and chutney. It has small seeds in it. The seeds can be removed or we can use it without removing the seeds for preparing this pickle. But for cooking other recipes, the seeds have to be removed. I used it without removing the seeds as it helps to maintain the composure of this fruit. The procedure for making the pickle is same for both the cases.

Generally it is available from August to October every year in Tamil Nadu. In and around the surrounding villages of my native, it is also used as as a guard or fence in the farms to protect other plants, vegetables and crops from cows and goats from being grazed.
Kalakkai-pickle-recipe
Basic Information:

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time:15 minutes
Makes: 1 cup

Karonda-pickle-recipe

Ingredients:

Kalakkai / Karonda / Bengal Currant / Christ's Thorn Fruit - 1 cup
Dry Red chilli - 10 to 15, based on the spice level
Fenugreek - 1/4 tsp
Gingelly Oil - 1/4 cup
Mustard seeds - 1/4 tablespoon
Curry leaves - 1 spring
Asafoetida - a big pinch
Salt - to taste

Method:

1) Wash the Kalakkai well and remove the stem if any.
2) Wipe it using the kitchen towel.
How-to-make-kalakkai-pickle-step1
3) Take a thick bottom kadai and dry roast the fenugreek and dry red chillies one by one. Make sure not to burn any.
How-to-make-kalakkai-pickle-step2
4) Cool the roasted ingredients to room temperature and make a fine powder using a dry mixer. Keep it aside.
How-to-make-kalakkai-pickle-step3
5) To the same kadai, add gingelly oil. When it is hot and not smoking, add the mustard seeds and let it splutter.
How-to-make-kalakkai-pickle-step4
6)  Add curry leaves and let it become crisp.
7) Add the kalakkai to the kadai and mix it well. Let it cook in the medium flame.
How-to-make-kalakkai-pickle-step5
8) Once it becomes soft, add the powdered masala, salt and asafoetida. Mix well.
How-to-make-kalakkai-pickle-step6
9) In a very low flame, continue mixing the pickle for few minutes and turn off the flame.
10) Cool down to room temperature before storing in air tight container.
Bengal-currant-pickle-recipe
Note:

1) If you are using it with seed, discard the seeds while eating it.
2) The colour of pickle depends on the dry red chilli you use.
3) Instead of freshly grinding the spices, you can also use ready made red chilli powder and fenugreek seeds powder.

Maravalli Kizhangu Vadai / Tapioca Vada / Kappa Vadai

Maravalli-Kizhangu-Vadai-1
Tapioca is an addiction from my childhood days. I simply love to eat the boiled one with kara chutney. Once in a while, I make other dishes like chips, dosa, stir fry or vadai.

Today's Chennai weather demanded something hot to go with my usual evening ginger chai. so, without the further thinking, I prepared this quick vada. It doesn't need soaking of any dal and it can be prepared instantly.

Except the grating or chopping part, this vadai can be prepared in a jiffy.

Kappa-Vadai

Basic Information:

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes
Makes: 17-20 small vadais
Tapioca-Vada
Ingredients:

Kappa / Tapioca / Maravalli Kilangu - 2 medium size
Rice flour - 1/2 heaped cup
Onion - 1 medium size
Green chilli - 2, finely chopped
Ginger - 1/2 teaspoon, finely chopped
Cumin seeds - 1 teaspoon
Curry leaves - 2 tablespoons, finely chopped
Coriander leaves - 2 tablespoons, finely chopped
Salt - to taste

Method:

1) Wash and peel the skin of the tapioca.
2) Chop it into small cubes or grate it. I had a tender tapioca and chopped it. If you find difficult to chop, grate it using grater.
How-to-make-kappa-vadai-Step1
3) Grind it without adding water.
How-to-make-kappa-vadai-Step2
4) Transfer the ground tapioca to the mixing bowl. Add rice flour to it.
How-to-make-kappa-vadai-Step3
5) Add finely chopped onion, green chilli, ginger, cumin seeds, curry leaves, coriander leaves and salt.
How-to-make-kappa-vadai-Step4
6) Mix well and make a dough.
7) Divide into a big amla size ball and then pat it according to your preference. I pat it like the urad dal vada.
How-to-make-kappa-vadai-Step5
8) Deep fry it in the oil until it turns golden brown.
9) Once done, drain the excess oil and transfer to a plate.
How-to-make-kappa-vadai-Step6
10) Serve hot with your favorite chutney.

Kappa-Kizhangu-Vadai
Notes:
1) After Grinding, based on the how wet the tapioca is, increase or decrease the rice flour quantity.
2) Make sure to serve the vada immediately. Once it cools down, it becomes rubbery.

Banana Stem Mor Kootu / Vazhaithandu Mor Kootu

Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-1
Plantain Stem Mor kootu or Vazhaithandu Mor kootu is one of the easiest dish to prepare. I prepare this often to go with any spicy south Indian gravies or variety rice.

The fresh tender banana stem does not quickly turn brown and I generally use to make dishes immediately after buying and don't intend to refrigerate it. The cleaning process takes little time but every effort is worth due to the enormous health benefit it carries.

Now off to the recipe with step by step pictures.
Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-2
Basic Information:

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 10-15 minutes
Servers: 4
Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-3
Ingredients:

Coconut oil - 1 tablespoon
Mustard seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Curry leaves - 1 spring
dry red chilli - 1
Banana stem / Vazhai thandu - 1
Salt - to taste
Coconut - 1/3 cup
Cumin seeds - 1 teaspoon
Green chilli - 1
Roasted channa dal - 1 teaspoon
Curd - 1/2 cup
Butter millk - 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup
Method:

1) Take a wide bowl and fill it to half with water and dilute the buttermilk in it.
2) Clean and remove the outer cover of the banana stem. You need to use the core part for cooking. Slice the core stem in round discs and again cut them into small parts. Remove the fiber that comes while chopping.
Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-Step1
3) Add these chopped pieces into the buttermilk diluted water to prevent it from discolouration or browning.
4) Dip a steel or wooden skewer in to the vessel where you kept the chopped banana stem and swirl it for 30 seconds. After 30 seconds, take the skewer out and if you see any fiber then slowly remove these fibers. Repeat the swirling step until you don't see any fiber.
Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-Step2
5) Heat oil in a pan. When it is hot, add mustard seeds and dry red chilli. Allow it to sizzle. Add curry leaves. Saute it for few seconds.
Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-Step3
6) Simmer the flame and drain the water from chopped banana stem and add it to the pan along with salt. No need to add water. The moisture in the banana stem is enough. Simmer and close the pan using a lid and cook it.
Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-Step4
7) While it is cooking, grind the coconut, cumin seeds, green chilli and roasted channa dal and make a paste.
8) Once the banana stem is almost cooked, add this ground paste to it. Use 1/2 cup or required water to rinse the mixie and pour it to the pan. Mix Well.
Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-Step5
9) Allow it to boil until the required consistency reached and turn the flame off.
Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-Step6
10) Pour the beaten curd now and mix well.
Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-Step7
11) Mix well one more time and server hot.
Banana-Stem-Mor-Kootu-4
Notes:

1) The gravy becomes thick while cooling down so turn off the flame when the kootu is little watery.
2) Instead of roasted channa dal, rice flour can also be used as thickening agent.
3) The tender and fresh banana stem stays fresh without discoloration which ideally fit for this kootu recipe. If the banana stem turns brown so quickly, then add a pinch of turmeric powder for improving the appeal of the recipe.

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