Monday, August 31, 2009

Daat Polae(thick dosa) with chutney and potato bhaji.

In konkani we say polae for dosa and daat means thick.Daat polae or thick dosa with coconut chutney and potato bhaji. Scrumptious meal thats what my 5 year old son said when he saw what was for breakfast that day.
I am not much of a chutney or bhaji with polae person, I like mine plain dunked in chai(tea) as all the holes get soaked in tea and ummm... that's a totally different taste.

My Aayi(maternal grandma) makes the best polae in the whole wide world. When she makes them there are tiny holes(due to fermentation) all over the polae. Usually she serves it with channa ros.

When Ma made polae she never ever added udit dal, it was just rice and methi seeds along with sometimes a handful of cooked rice or soaked poha. So the polaes were always snowy white in color. Ma served the polae with coconut chutney.
Since coming to Canada I have missed the polae made by Aayi and Ma.

I do not have either of their recipe so I came up with my own proportions to make these dosa.

4 cups raw rice,
1 cup udit dal(split black lentil),
1 tbsp methi seeds,
1 cup cooked rice or soaked poha.
1 and 1/2 tsp salt and pinch of sugar.

  • Wash and soak rice, dal and the methi seeds in water separately for 5-6 hours.
  • Put soaked rice and cooked rice /soaked poha in a blender and grind to a fine paste, pour in a vessel big enough to allow fermentation.
  • Next grind the soaked udit dal and methi seeds till you get a fine paste.
  • Pour into the vessel containing the ground rice, add salt and sugar and mix well with a whisk.
  • Cover and let ferment overnight or for 8-10 hours in a warm place.
  • Next day the batter will be fermented and bubbly.
  • Heat a 8 inch non stick tava on medium heat, add 1/2 tsp of oil, use a paper towel and spread the oil and pour 3/4 cup of the batter on the tava, spread to make a circle, cover with lid and let cook for 2 minutes, then take off the cover and using a spatula flip the pola(dosa) over so that it cooks on the other side for another minute so that the other side gets cooked too.
  • If using non stick pan there is no need of adding more oil to the pan. Prepare the rest of the polae in similar manner. Serve hot with chutney and potato bhaji.

Traditionally in goa we use cast iron tava(bhidyacho tavo), but here I use non stick tava.
Whisk makes the mixing of the batter easy and even.
I use the same proportion to make thin polae or crispy masala dosa and idlis too.
Vary the amount of batter poured on the tava to get thin, thick or very thick dosa.


Green Chutney.

1 cup coconut,
1 green chilly(more if you like spicy),
2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves,
1 tsp grated ginger,
1/2 tsp sugar,
salt to taste,
2 tbsp lemon juice,
water to puree the chutney.

  • Put all ingredients in a blender and puree to a fine paste adding water as required.
  • Serve with dosa.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Cranberry Chicken

I simply like cranberry chutney/sauce with roasted chicken or turkey. I made loads of the cranberry sauce and stocked it in my refrigerator, so decided to make use of it by adding it to chicken and giving it some twist. My kids loved the dish a lot.

2 cups chicken, cut into pieces,
1 onion, chopped,
1 tomato chopped fine,
2 tbsp cranberry chutney/sauce,
2 tbsp tomato ketchup,
1 tsp garam masala,
1 tbsp ginger-garlic-green chilly paste(g-g-g paste),
1/2 tsp turmeric powder,
2 tsp paprika,
1 tsp salt,
1 tbsp oil.

2 tbsp chopped cilantro for garnish.


  • Apply g-g-g paste to chicken keep aside for 15 minutes.

  • Heat oil in a pan on medium heat. Add onions and cook for 5 minutes till onion is translucent. Next add tomato and cook till tomato is soft.

  • Then add all other ingredients except chicken. Mix well till all the ingredients are well blended. Finally add the chicken and mix well, cover and allow the chicken to cook till tender. Sprinkle chopped cilantro and mix well.

  • Serve with hot steamed rice and enjoy.

Add some more chilly powder or slit green chillies for a spicier version.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Doodh Pedas

I make microwave pedas using condensed milk or the stove top method using paneer. Today I decided to make the pedas using paneer.

1 and 1/2 cup paneer(boil 5 cups of milk, curdle and strain it),
3/4 cup milk powder,
3/4 cup milk,
1/2 cup plus 1tbsp sugar,
2 tbsp butter/ghee,
1/2 tsp cardamom powder,
slivered almonds /any nuts,
strands of saffron for garnish.


  • Heat butter in a pan on medium heat, when melted add the paneer, milk powder and milk.

  • Keep stirring on medium heat for about 18-20 minutes till the paneer mixture forms a lump and leaves the sides of the pan.

  • Add the sugar and cardamom powder (the mixture will become watery again) and stir for about 10-12 minutes till the mixture again becomes a big lump and leaves the sides of the pan.

  • Take off heat and let cool slightly, divide into 20-25 portions and roll into balls, press each ball slightly to flatten like a peda and stick a few strands of saffron and some slivered almonds on the top.
I pressed the peda mixture into molds that I got from India and that explains the flower shaped pedas.

Can substitute drained ricotta cheese for paneer.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Snap Peas Bhaji

I was very excited to get these snap peas and couple of pods of green peas from my garden. Just made a simple stir fry dish out of it.

2 cups chopped snap peas,
1/2 onion, chopped ,
1 tomato, chopped,
1/2 tsp cumin seeds,
pinch of sugar,
1 tsp salt,
1 tbsp oil,
2 tbsp grated coconut,
1/2 tsp turmeric powder,
1/2 tsp garam masala (optional),
2 tbsp green peas.

  • Heat oil in a pan on medium heat and add cumin seeds. Then add the chopped onion and fry till onion is cooked, then add the tomato and fry again for few minutes.
  • Next add the chopped snap peas and green peas, stir again.
  • Finally add the salt, sugar, turmeric powder, garam masala and the coconut.
  • Mix well and add few tbsp of water and cover the pan with a lid. Reduce the heat to very low and allow the vegetables to cook till tender.
You can just stir fry and keep the snap peas crunchy if you like or cook till very soft and tender.

Vegetables from my kitchen garden

Yellow beans, green peas, snap peas & zucchini.
Snap Peas.
Coriander leaves.
Radish leaves.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Modak for Ganesh Chaturthi.


Saturday, August 22, 2009

Cornflour Delight

Nothing can be more simpler than this delight.
It is very quick and easy to prepare and elegant enough to serve guests. I like the one made with coconut milk and cashew pieces added to it.
This recipe is very dear to me and one of my all time favourite sweets. Very dear bcoz it was one of the last sweets I ate made by my Ma before she passed away.

1 cup cornflour/corn starch,
1 cup sugar,
6 cups water/coconut milk/milk,
1/2 tsp cardamom powder or any essence,
slivered almonds or any kind of nuts for garnish,
food color(optional).

  • Mix cornflour, sugar, water in a pan and keep on medium low heat. Keep stirring frequently till it becomes very thick paste( about 8-10 minutes)
  • Take the pan off the heat, add cardamom powder or essence (mix food color if adding) and pour into a 8in x 8in pan and smoothen the top with the back of a spoon.
  • Garnish with slivered almonds. Cool completely and cut into desired shapes.
  • Serve room temperature or refrigerate and serve cold.
Add any variety of liquids mentioned or a combo of the liquids.
You just need your imagination to make different creations from this one basic recipe.
Today I made it two toned, I poured half of the cornflour paste in the tray then added 2 drops red food coloring and mixed the remainder of the paste and that gave me pink layer, which I poured over the white layer.

Ma sometimes made it three colored, she added soaked haleem seeds in between the two colored layers.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Tiny Samosa Bites

My 5 year old son simply loved these bites and has requested that I pack these for his school lunch when he starts grade 1 in the fall.

4 sheets phyllo pastry,
2 cups filling, vegetable or chicken,
oil to brush the pastry,
1tsp cornflour mixed with 1tbsp water.
Oil for deep frying.

  • Take one of the phyllo sheet and lay it flat on a board. Brush it with oil using pastry brush, fold in half.
  • Cut 4 long strips of the sheet. Take 1 strip and put 1tbsp of filling mixture on one end, then flip the corner end over filling to make triangle, keep flipping and making triangle of the sheet till the end then apply cornflour paste on the edge and stick the edge over the triangle.
  • Keep covered under a moist towel. Make the rest of the samosas in similar way.
  • Heat the oil, and deep fry the samosas in batches till brown and crispy.
  • Serve with chutney or ketchup.
  • Makes 16 tiny samosas.


I used potato filling to make these samosas, but you can use whatever filling you like or have on hand.

For a healthier version you can bake them in the oven at 350F for 20-30 minutes. Just for a change I wanted the fried goodies :D

Coconut Mawa Barfi.

August 5th was Raksha Bandhan and Narali Poornima so I made this Coconut Mawa barfi. My 2 year old daughter gobbled a couple of the barfi pieces before even tying the rakhi to her brother's hand. :)

1 cup mawa,
1 cup fine ground dry coconut,
1/2 cup fine rava,
1 cup sugar,
1 tsp cardamom powder,
slivered almonds.

  • Heat a pan on medium heat and roast rava.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients and cook on slow flame till it becomes a soft dough and leaves the sides of the pan.
  • Grease a tray (8inch x8inch) with a tsp of ghee and pour the coconut mixture in the tray and spread to form a neat layer.
  • Arrange the slivered almonds on the top and press them slightly into the coconut layer.
  • Keep in refrigerator for a couple of hours and then cut into desired shape and size.


For 1 cup mawa, I boiled 5 cups of milk and added 2-3 tbsp yogurt, allowed the curdled milk to boil for few minutes so that the channa(soft paneer) is nice and firm. Then strained the channa through a fine seive and rinsed with cold water. I got 1 cup of home made mawa.

Instead of mawa or channa you can use 1 cup strained ricotta cheese.