Maravalli Kizhangu Vadai / Tapioca Vada / Kappa Vadai

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.


Basic Information:

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

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


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.
3) Grind it without adding water.
4) Transfer the ground tapioca to the mixing bowl. Add rice flour to it.
5) Add finely chopped onion, green chilli, ginger, cumin seeds, curry leaves, coriander leaves and salt.
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.
8) Deep fry it in the oil until it turns golden brown.
9) Once done, drain the excess oil and transfer to a plate.
10) Serve hot with your favorite chutney.

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.

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Banana Stem Mor Kootu / Vazhaithandu Mor Kootu

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.
Basic Information:

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 10-15 minutes
Servers: 4

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

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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
9) Allow it to boil until the required consistency reached and turn the flame off.
10) Pour the beaten curd now and mix well.
11) Mix well one more time and server hot.

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.

Spring Onion Paratha / Hara Pyaaz Paratha


I had a big bunch of Spring onion sitting in my refrigerator after a food photo shoot. There are many ways to use Spring Onion in your daily recipes and Paratha is one among them. I use it along with other ingredients as stuffing or sometimes I just mix it with flour and roll it as parathas.

In place of Spring onion, scallion or Green onions can also be used. Spring onion has a white bulge at its bottom whereas scallion or green onion doesn't have such an appearance. Spring onion's green part has more flavors compared to scallion or green onion. Except this there isn't much difference between both.

Now we will see how to make Spring onion paratha step-by-step.


Basic Information:

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes
Makes: 7 parathas



Wheat Flour / Atta - 1 cup + for dusting
Spring onion / Scallion / Green onion - 1/2 heaped cup
Red chilli powder - 1 teaspoon
Cumin seeds - 1 teaspoon
Turmeric powder - 1/4 teaspoon
Salt - to taste
Water - little less than 1/2 cup or as required
Oil - as required


1) Chop the green part of the spring onion finely using knife or scissors.
2) In a mixing bowl, mix wheat flour, chopped spring onion, red chilli powder, Cumin seeds, turmeric powder and salt.
3) Mix everything using a hand.
4) Slowly add water and make a smooth dough.
5) Towards the end, add a teaspoon of oil and knead few more minutes.
6) Divide the dough into 7 equal parts.
7) Roll into a circular disc with the help of Wheat flour.
8) Heat tawa and when it is hot enough, place the paratha on it.
9) When the colour of paratha changes, turn it to other side and smear oil. Flip it again and cook it completely on both the sides.
10) Server hot with curd and pickle.


1) Keep covered until you serve the paratha.
2) You may also rest the dough for 10 to 15 minutes before rolling into parathas.
3) You may also add the bottom white part of spring onion but make sure to chop it in a very fine manner before adding into dough.

Coconut Milk Rice / Thengai Paal Sadam

Indian curry trail wishes you a very happy new year !!!
I just took a break from blogging and it is almost a year since I updated my blog. However I've been keeping my culinary experience active through other social media sites like Facebook, twitter and Instagram.

Over the past few months, I am super active on Instagram. Whenever I post a dish on my instagram account, visitors used to ask me a recipe, so I thought I need to revive my blogging. Amidst my personal and official commitments, it is becoming quite difficult to publish recipe on a daily basis. So I limit myself by updating one recipe a week.

Here comes the first entry of the year and my first ever attempt from my end to shoot a video. Please view and make sure to comment and subscribe it. Thank you!


Basic Ingredients:

Ghee - 2 tablespoons
Cloves - 3
Cardamom - 2
Cinnamon - 1
Bay leaves - 1
Fennel seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Cashew nuts - 2 tablespoons
Curry leaves - 1 spring
Green chilli - 2 numbers, slit
Onion - 1 , sliced
Ginger garlic paste - 1 teaspoon
Coriander leaves - 1/4 cup
Basmathi Rice - 1 cup
Coconut milk - 2 cups
Salt - to taste


1. Wash the basmati rice 2 or 3 times and soak it for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, slice onion, slit green chilli and mince ginger and garlic.
2. In a pan, add two tablespoons of Ghee and let it melt down completely.
3. Add the spices ( clove, cardamom, bay leaf, cinnamon and fennel seeds) and fry till it releases nice aroma. Then add cashew nuts and fry till golden brown.(Not shown in the step wise pictures but in video)

4. Add curry leaves and green chilli
5. Add onion and saute till it is translucent. 

6. Add ginger garlic paste and let the raw smell go off.
7. Add finally chopped coriander leaves and saute for few seconds
8. Drain the water from basmathi Rice and add to the pan and saute a minute.

9. Add coconut milk and salt to taste. Mix well.
10. Cover the pan using lid and let it cook well till the water is absorbed.

11. Once cooked, fluffy it and transfer the rice to a wide pan to avoid sticking together.
12. Serve hot with any of your favorite gravy.

Restaurant Review - Food Nirvana

On a fine Saturday Oct month, myself and the housemate(TH) decided to go out for lunch. When he suggested a Full Buffet in Accord Metropolitan I gave a long look. That look had at least 100 meanings in it :-). But no guy can completely decipher a woman's thoughts. Right???.

Well, one inference that the housemate got from my glance was that month being Purattasi, non veg was a complete no-no to us. So if non-veg options are curfew-ed, then I was not the one to spend a few hundred bucks on a veg buffet. My hubby was also against it. So both were quickly suggesting some veg outlets.

I suggested (Pizza) --- TH (oh no not for a Saturday lunch), He (Saravana Bhavan) --- Me (again a scornful look), I (Rajdhani) -- TH (he was interested in the huge platter they serve and was ok-ok). I told him to check if there are any other outlets apart from the one in Phoenix Mall, Chennai. He started checking it over web and stumbled upon something which he initially didn't reveal to me. He mentioned we are going to RA Puram and I heard it as Arya Gowda Road😆. I was wondering is there a restaurant in Arya Gowda road as I'm cognizant of this area and the nearby shops. 

So after a brief ride, I understood that he is taking me to some other place. I started pestering him with my usual questions "where are we going". He asked me to be blind and just accompany him.

After a quick ride for 15 minutes we reached "Cafe Nirvana". It is a vegetarian restaurant situated on the Chamiers Road in Alwarpet/ RA Puram area. Well, the board is not easily recognizable due to the tall trees on the road. Luckily TH was driving the car slowly. It is just a few yards from the Velveteen Rabbit Pub & Restaurant on the Chamiers Road. There is limited parking space available for the Cafe Nirvana restaurant. 2 or 3 cars can be parked and the rest have to be parked along the kerb. but good thing is that they do valet parking. The restaurant sits on the 1st floor. There is a ATM downstairs.There is no lift but stairs are comfortable to take. 

As I entered the restaurant, I found the ambiance to be simple and good. The restaurant was spacious and decent. We were asked to wait for few minutes and were taken to an enclosure inside (meant for exclusive family dining or small party, I guess). 

We were greeted by the waiters and were given the menu card to choose from. The menu card was clamped to a board which resembled like a cutting board to me👸. I started going through the menu and asked the usual question of what TH is going to order. The discussion with him went for few minutes and waiters had waited till we decide on the food from menu card. 

Hot Pepper Soup
TH started with Soup of the Day. Asked the waiter what was the variety for that day and it was Hot Pepper and I too got interested. Hubby asked the waiter to make it 1/2 and the waiter obliged kindly. TH ordered a Paneer dish - Paneer has become synonymous with desi vegetarian folks and also for TH. The dish he ordered was "Deggi Mirchi Paneer Tikka". I don't remember a day he hadn't order any paneer dish in any of our dine-outs.
Deggi Mirchi Paneer Tikka
I topped up the order with two more starters “BBQ Bell Pepper & Cottage Cheese Wrap“ and “Jamaican Jerk Chilli Cheese Toast”. While him and me were relishing the Soup, the 1st starter "Deggi Mirchi Paneer Tikka” came at the right time. The Paneer was soft and cut into nice square cubes and garnished with herbs. It tasted yummy. The “Jamaican Jerk Chilli Cheese Toast” and “BBQ Bell Pepper & Cottage Cheese Wrap” came swiftly one after the other. The Jerk Chilli was an absolute delight – not too spicy not too bland – just the right mix. The Cottage Cheese wrap was ok-ok. Nothing great about it.

The one thing which was common in all the plates was a beetroot noodles which was simply attracting and nice to eat as well. 

BBQ Bell Pepper & Cottage Cheese Wrap
For the main dish, he ordered one of his old favorite “Kashmiri Naan” and to go with this sweet naan he ordered spicy “Subzi Kofta Curry”. He didn’t have Kashmiri Naan for a very long time and when it was available on the menu, he quickly checked with the waiter if its available. Since my tummy was already full with the delightful starters, I didn’t go for a separate main dish and just asked the waiter to bring one more Kashmiri Naan. The Naan was great topped with dry fruits in abundance. The Naan was not too oily and was cooked to the right level. The Naan went well with the spicy Subzi and we really enjoyed the dish.

Both our tummies were full but still we were interested to try the “Paan Icecream”. We ordered one and shared it between us. The ice cream was heavenly and it signed off a well-fed lunch. He asked for the bill and it was not high considering the quality of dishes served. I would recommend “Café Nirvana” to any veggie lover who wanted to try slightly different but still not too offbeat. Happy Eating!

Jamaican Jerk Chilli Cheese Toast

Kashmiri Naan

Subzi Kofta Curry

Paan Icecream

Indian Curry Trail Ratings:

Vegetarian / Non - Vegetarian: Vegetarian Only
Cuisine: Continental, North Indian
Food: 4.5/5
Ambiance: 4/5
Service: 4.5/5
Kids Friendly: Yes 
Cost for Two: 1000 INR
Value for Money: Moderate
Parking: Yes (Valet Partking Available)
Address: 23/11, 2nd Main Road, RA Puram, Chennai

Disclaimer: This is not a paid review and opinions are truly mine.


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