Tuesday 19 May 2020

Easy Moru Kachiyathu | Kerala Style Kachiyamoru | Moru Curry without Coconut | Seasoned Buttermilk

This is a simple, ready in a jiffy and yet a yummy gravy with yogurt that can please your palate as well as your time :) I make it mostly once a week, especially when I have non vegetarian side dishes like chukka or roast or some grilled chicken. My folks are happy and that makes me too happy :) It is basically nothing but tempered curd or yogurt. So I don't want to ramble much.. Just one more thing before we head on to the recipe. It tastes great with potato fry or koorka upperi as well ;) Here in this pic I have served it with Unnipindi upperi, simple chicken kebab, beef roast & beetroot pachadi :)

Serves: 2 persons

I Took: 

Preparation Time: 15 minutes

I Used:

Coconut Oil - 1 tbsp
Mustard/Kaduku - ½ tsp
Fenugreek/Uluva - ¼ tsp
Ginger - 1 tsp - finely chopped
Garlic - 1 tsp - finely chopped
Red Chilly - 2 nos - chopped/broken
Green Chilly - 2 nos - chopped/broken
Curry Leaves - 2 sprigs
Turmeric powder - ½ tsp
Salt - As Needed
1 cup - beaten/whisked
As Needed - If required

The Way:

1. Beat the curd nicely and keep aside. You can use a mixie or whisk for this. If using a mixie, add the curd in the jar along with water and salt and pulse them once or twice and you will get smooth curd. If using whisk, add water to the curd along with salt and whisk well till no lumps are there and the curd is smooth

2. Heat coconut oil in a pan/kadai. When it's hot, splutter the mustard. When it splutters,add the fenugreek seeds 

3. Then the chopped ginger and garlic and saute for 30 seconds 

4. Then add the chopped green chillies, red chillies and curry leaves and give a quick saute

5. Finally add turmeric powder (with the flame at low, else the powder will get burnt easily) and asafoetida if using and saute for another 30 seconds

6. Now add the whisked curd and give a quick stir and switch off the flame. Else it will start to split

Serve warm with matta rice and a spicy non veg side dish of your choice!


Friday 1 May 2020

Coconut Chutney | White Coconut Chutney | South Indian Thengai Chutney with Pottu Kadalai | Easy Side dish for Idly/Dosa/Uthappam/Pongal | Vella Cutney

This is one of the most versatile and easy chutney that you can ever make. You know why versatile, coz it can be paired with almost many of the South Indian tiffins/breakfast dishes like idly, dosa, uthappam, pongal, upma, vadai etc etc.. It is a simple, clean and yet another ready in a jiffy recipe :) Since it is a basic recipe I am tagging it under basics here :) Most of the households would have a variant of this chutney recipe yet some of the ingredients remain the core ;) Grind, taste, adjust and repeat.. That's how you roll when you are a beginner. After a few times you will get the hang of it. So let's see how this simple humble chutney is made..

Serves: 4 persons

I Took: 

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

I Used:

Grated Coconut - ½ cup
Green Chilly - 2 nos
Ginger - An inch piece
Fried Gram/Pottukadalai - 2 tbsp
Salt - As Needed
Water - As Needed

To Temper:

Oil (Coconut/Sunflower) - 2 tbsp
Mustard - ½ tsp
Curry Leaves - 2 sprigs

The Way:

1. Take the grated coconut and ginger in a mixer jar. Add little water (¼ cup) and grind them coarsely

2. Now add the green chilly, fried gram dal/pottu kadalai and salt and grind them nicely to a smooth (as smooth or coarse as you want) consistency

3. In a tadka pan, heat oil. Splutter mustard seeds

4. Then add the curry leaves. Switch off flame

5. Add the tadka to the chutney

Serve with idly, dosa, uthappam, pongal !


  • Use freshly broken & scraped coconut. The taste really differs when you use even a day old (refrigerated) coconut
  • While you grate there will be some red or brown coloured scrapings as well. Avoid them for this chutney as it will affect the colour ;)
  • Avoid using old coconut and also kopra
  • Add water according to the consistency of the chutney that you need. I would suggest using less water while grinding. Add more if needed once you grind and transfer the chutney to a container
  • For runny chutney you can add more pottu kadalai but be cautious if you do not like the taste
  • Ginger is optional. Pottu kadalai is also optional. Add both or either one or none as per your liking
  • Adjust the chillies as per your taste. Quantity of ingredients given are guidelines and can be adjusted to suit personal tastes
  • You can use the green chillies which has become ripe and turned red in colour. They might slightly change the colour of the chutney but tastes yum
  • If the chutney becomes too runny, add more grated coconut and grind
  • While tempering can add a tsp of urad dal as well


Saturday 11 April 2020

Rava Upma | Upma recipe | How to make upma?

Upma is one of the easiest breakfast that can be made in a jiffy. If you ask me, that would be the fastest breakfast that I can make, not considering idly and podi. But for idly, I would go slightly overboard and make chutney and mostly sambar as well ;) So coming back to upma, many do not like upma. In fact I hated it as a kid. I must say that I started appreciating it more after getting married ;) Not coz it's easy to make. But because my mil makes some kickass upma which is neither dry nor gooey but the perfect consistency. The key is in finding the correct ratio of water required for the consistency that suits your liking. The rest is breeze. Experiment with that and I am sure you will reach there too soon :) The ratio I have mentioned here is for a more firm and fluffy upma. So let's see how to make it..

Serves: 2 persons

I Took: 

Preparation Time: 5 minutes

Cooking Time: 15 minutes

I Used:

Oil/Ghee - 1 tbsp
Mustard - 1 tsp
Urd Dal - 1 tsp
Curry Leaves - A sprig
Roasted Rava/Semolina - 1 cup
Onion - 1 no (medium sized - chopped)
Green Chilly
2 nos 
¼ tsp
Water - 2 ¼ cups
Salt - As needed

The Way:

1. Take the rava/semolina in a kadai. Roast the rava on a low or medium flame for 3-4 minutes till they are crisp. Keep stirring else it will get burnt

2. Heat oil in a kadai/pan. Splutter mustard. When it splutters add the urd dal. Allow it to turn golden. Take care not to burn

3. Add curry leaves, chopped onions and green chilly and saute 

4. Add salt and asafoetida as well and saute till the onions slightly turn colour. I don't make them brown and just saute for 2-3 minutes as we like it that way

5. Now add water (refer notes) and check salt. It should taste salty. If not adjust salt. Allow the water to boil

6. Once it boils, reduce the flame and add the roasted rava little at a time and constantly stirring with your other hand. Keep the flame reduced, as the water can splutter 

7. The rava will absorb the water and become thick. Then close the pan with a lid and allow the rava to cook in low flame for about 5-6 minutes

8. Now open the lid and check. You can stir in between if needed or you are worried that it might stick to the bottom of the vessel

Garnish with little grated coconut or coriander leaves before you serve !


  • Use ghee for a more yummy flavour and taste
  • You can also add fried cashews for a richer taste
  • I always use roasted rava/semolina as it makes my life easier! If you are using unroasted one, then as the first step roast the rava in a pan for 3-4 minutes in medium flame until you get a nice roasted flavour. Keep stirring else it will get burnt
  • We like our upma plain. If you want to add veggies like carrot, beans or peas, you can add them after sauteeing the onions and then proceed to the next step once the veggies get cooked
  • You can even add tomatoes for a tangy flavour
  • My mom adds some chopped ginger along with the onions, so if you like that flavour you can add them as well
  • The quantity of water mentioned here is for a fluffy upma. If you like more gooey one increase the quantity of water. Either ways make sure the rava is properly cooked. Low flame and covered cooking is the key for a properly cooked and fluffy upma !


Friday 27 March 2020

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Sunday 22 March 2020

Chow Chow Kootu | Chayote Squash Kootu | South Indian Kootu with Bangalore Kathirikkai

Kootu is one of my favourite side dishes. It is a wholesome meal in itself and requires really less effort and time. And luckily my little one also loves it, so I find making them often. Usually I make kootu with any veggies similar to this Pudalangai kootu (Snake Gourd) or this Yellow Pumpkin Kootu (Poosanikai) without coconut. At times I use coconut but do not grind them like in this Vazhaithandu Kootu (Banana stem). For me those recipes are very light on the tummy and the one like this Chow Chow kootu recipe today is a little heavy with coconut and rice flour ground and mixed in. But I like this one too. It also tastes yum and is like the one in restaurants or the ones that they serve in weddings :) 

Recipe Source: Ma


I Took: 30 minutes


Serves : 2 persons

I Used:

Chow Chow (Chayote)-1 medium sized one
Channa Dal/Moong Dal-¼ cup
Ginger-An inch piece
Garlic-2-3 cloves
Turmeric powder-¼ tsp
Salt-As needed

To Grind:

Grated Coconut - 3-4 tbsp
Red Chilly - 1 no
Cumin Seeds/Jeerakam - ½ tsp
Rice Flour - 1 tsp

To Temper:
Oil-1 tbsp
Mustard -½ tsp
Urad Dal-1 tsp
Red Chilly-3 nos
Curry leaves-A sprig
Asafoetida-2 pinch

The Way:

1. Rinse channa (or moong) dal thoroughly in water. Then soak the dal in water (I took 1.5 cups) for 20-30 minutes. Channa dal pairs well with chow chow but at times I use moong dal too

2. Remove the skin of chow chow (and also the seed in the middle) and dice it and keep aside

3. Add salt & turmeric powder to the soaked dal, diced chow chow, crushed ginger (optional) & crushed garlic (optional) in a pressure cooker. Pressure cook it for 3-4 whistles or until it is done 

4. Alternately you can cook them in a pot as well. If using a pot, make sure you add sufficient water and cook the dal & chow chow. Also take care to see that the water doesn't dry up and leave you with a burnt vessel. However chow chow takes longer to cook. So it's better to use a pressure cooker for faster cooking

5. While the chow chow is getting cooked, take the grated coconut, cumin seeds, red chilly & rice flour in a mixer along with 2-3 tbsps of water and grind it to a smooth paste 

6. Once the chow chow is cooked and the the pressure is released, open the cooker. Add the ground paste to it and give a nice stir

7. If water is less, add enough for your desired consistency. Allow the kootu to boil in low flame

8. Now for the tadka/tempering, heat oil in a tadka pan/kadai

9. Add the mustard seeds. When they splutter, add the urd dal. As it slightly turns colour add the remaining ingredients (red chilly is optional - add to adjust the heat of the kootu) and give a nice stir

10. Add the tadka to the kootu and mix and serve

Tastes awesome with Plain Rice / Rasam Sadam / Kathirikai Kara Kuzhambu / Pavakkai Puli Kuzhambu


Instead of boiling the moong dal, you can pressure cook as well. Just about 2 whistles should suffice. 


Wednesday 12 February 2020

Chammanthi Podi | Nadan Chammanthi Podi | Nalikera Podi | Kerala Style Roasted Coconut Powder for Rice

Chammanthi Podi needs no intro for a Malayalee ;) It is a staple at many Mallu homes and almost every other mallu going abroad would have taken this condiment, packed & sealed tightly and buried deep inside the suitcase :D If they do not take it during their first visit, they will definitely remember to pack some when they come & go back after the vacation :)

It is really yummy, easy to make, can be stored for quite some time if handled properly and can be had with just rice and curd. It is the most yummax combo if you ask me :) And we eat a pot full of rice when we eat them with matta rice & curd combo. Of course, we make a fluffy omelette loaded with onions also to go with it ! So now without much talk, let's see how this is made.. 

P.S: This one is made by my mil & I took only the pics :D And these are one of the first set of food pics taken with iPhone XR. Am going to ditch my SLR for a while now...

Recipe Source: Amma

Serves: 3-4 persons

I Took: 

Preparation Time: 5 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes

I Used:

Coconut - 2 medium sized coconuts - Around 4 cups - grated
Tamarind - 3 tbsp - A big lemon sized 
Shallots - 15-20 nos - medium sized
Curry Leaves - 4-5 sprigs
Red Chilly - 20-22 nos

The Way:

1. Grate the coconut finely without bigger scrapes. If you get big scrapes while grating, then you can add them in a mixie jar and give a quick pulse so that the scrapes are even. This will ensure that the colour of the powder/podi is even and dark without white specks

2. Take the grated (& pulsed) coconut in a wide and thick bottomed pan/uruli. Roast them on a low/medium flame. Keep roasting them as often as possible to ensure that they do not get burnt or get stuck at the bottom of the vessel

3. Once the coconut starts to brown slightly, add the tamarind pieces (If you wish, can wash them and add) and keep roasting

4. After 2-3 minutes add the curry leaves and shallots. If shallots are bigger, slice them and add

5. Keep roasting them till they turn deep brown in colour. Keep caution to not to burn them else the taste of the podi will not be up to the mark

6. In a separate kadai/vessel roast the dry red chillies for 2-3 minutes till they swell up and give out a good glaze. Do not roast for long as it will get burnt 

7. Now allow them to cool till they reach room temperature

8. Then add all the contents including the red chilly to a large mixie jar and grind them coarsely. Ideally it should be a little coarse. You can grind them as fine or coarse as you wish though :)

Serve with matta rice, curd & pickle :)


Monday 3 February 2020

Dal Palak (without onion and garlic) | Palak Dal | Easy Dal Palak Recipe

Recipe for the day is this warm and yummy Dal Palak which always reminds me of our Pune days. This hot bowl of simple yet flavorful palak dal was enough for us to eat scores of phulkas and extra extra helpings of rice. Did I slightly go overboard? Maybe ;) But you get the drift right. It is healthy too. All you need is that bowl of dal and maybe a sabzi. Even if I don't get time to make a sabzi, we manage with boiled egg fry or paneer burji. I love to make this with the palak I used to buy in Pune which gives an earthly flavor to the gravy. With the Chennai palak I feel that's missing. So without much further talk, let's get to the recipe.

Recipe Source: Here

Serves: 3-4 persons

I Took: 

Preparation Time: 5 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes

I Used:

Palak - 2 cups
Tur Dal - ½ cup
Oil/Ghee - 2 tbsp
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Ginger - An inch piece - chopped
Green Chilly - 2 nos (medium sized) - chopped 
Red Chilly powder - ½ tsp
Asafoetida - ¼ tsp
Turmeric powder - ½ tsp
Salt - As Needed

The Way:

1. Rinse the lentil with water for 2-3 times. Then take them in a pressure cooker and add around 2 cups of water. Add salt and turmeric powder to it. If you have time soak the dal for 15-20 minutes before cooking so that they cook faster

2. Pressure cook the dal for 5 to 6 whistles till it becomes soft and mushy

3. Now rinse the palak in water for 2-3 times. Drain them of water. Then chop finely and keep aside. Also clean and chop the ginger and green chillies and keep aside

4. In a pan heat oil/ghee. Using ghee gives a very nice aroma and flavor to the gravy. Then temper the cumin seeds 

5. Reduce the flame to low and then add the chopped ginger and fry till the raw smell goes off

6. Then add the chopped green chillies & fry for 30 seconds

7. Now add the chopped palak and saute for a minute

8. Then add the red chilly powder and asafoetida

9. Now cover the pan and cook for 6-8 minutes till the palak is cooked. Palak will release some water. So no need to add additional water at this point. Just open the lid and saute twice or thrice in between so that the palak doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan

10. Mash the cooked dal so that it is smooth. Once the palak is cooked, add the mashed dal to it

11. Add water (1-2 cups) depending on the consistency you want or the gravy and give a nice stir

12. Check salt and add if needed

13. Simmer the dal for about 5 minutes and then switch off

Serve with nice phulkas/rotis, rice & a sabzi of choice :)