Thursday, April 22, 2010

చట్ని పొడి / Chutney podi/ Chutney powder

chanadal/senagapappu 2cups (rice cooker measure cup)
uraddal/minapappu 11/2 tbsp
Tamarind 1 small marble size or 1/2tbsp Amchur

Daniyalu/coriander seeds 2tbsp
Avalu/ mustard seeds 1tsp
Red chillys 15
dry coconut powder 11/2 cups
Heeng 1tsp
sugar or jaggery 1tsp
salt for taste

Dry roast chanadal and uraddal separately. Let it cool.
Heat one tbsp oil in a pan and add mustard seeds, then chillys and then coriander seeds
Roast them until brown and add heeng and turn off heat.
Now add coconut powder and stir it.
Grind dals first and keep aside.
Grind the rest of the ingredients along with salt and tamarind
Add ground dals to this mixture and mix well.

This powder goes with all alpaharams/snacks and rice also.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

పచ్చి పెసర పచ్చడి: Pacchi Pesara Pacchadi- Split green gram chutney

Serves: Five. Preparation time: 5 minutes. But soaking takes 1 hour. 

1 Cup Yellow (split and dehusked) Green gram dal (Dhuli moong dal, Pesara pappu)
4 Dry Red Chillies
1 Tsp Salt
1 level Tsp Cumin seeds
2 pinches Asafoetida
1 Tsp Lemon juice

1. Soak the Pesara pappu in water for one hour. Add enough water to immerse the pulse. 
2. Grinding: Grind the soaked Pesara pappu, Salt, red chillies, cumin seeds and Asafoetida into a smooth paste. Do not add water, the moisture from within the soaked pulses is enough. 
3. Squeeze 1 Tsp juice of Lemon over it and mix in properly. 

1. Lemon juice turns bitter if squeezed and left exposed. Hence, squeeze the lemon fresh over the Pacchadi.
2. Adjust salt and red chilli to taste.

Culture & Health:
This very-easy-to-prepare pacchadi is made fresh in small batches just for immediate consumption. It is rich in protein, has no oil at all, very good for health. The fresh lemon squeezed over it provides vitamins and phytochemicals. Can be prepared in a jiffy if you have the soaked pulse ready. It doesn't use the stove/heating at all, all ingredients are raw, hence the name "Pacchi pesara pacchadi".
A close cousin of this pacchadi is 'Vada pappu' (whole soaked pesara pappu with salt, red chilli) which is usually served as a prashadam especially on Rama Navami.

Dry roast the Pesara pappu instead of soaking it. Also dry roast the red chillies & Cumin seeds and grind with salt, asafoetida & water, the recipe is similar to Kandi pacchadi. It can be eaten plain as 'Pesara pacchadi'. Alternatively, add roasted Eggplant to this to make Vankaaya-Pesara Pacchadi.

This Pacchi pesara pacchadi recipe is courtesy Manju pinni, it is a regular item on the Chivukula family menu.

నువ్వుల పచ్చడి -Nuvvula Pacchadi: Sesame seed Chutney

 Serves: Five. Preparation time: 15 minutes. 
1 Cup Sesame seeds
4 finely sliced Green chillies or Dry red chillies
2 Tsp Salt
1 Tsp Jaggery (or Brown sugar)
1 Tbsp Tamarind paste

1. Dry roast the Sesame seeds on low heat until they turn brown, around 4 minutes on a fresh saucepan. Set aside to cool. 

2. Dry toast the chillies for a minute until the green ones wither, or the red ones give off an aroma. Set aside to cool. 

3. Grinding: Add the cooled sesame seeds, salt and chillies to the mixer jar. Sesame seeds are rich in oil and clump together when ground. Hence, grind for short durations of time and mix the contents so that the ground seeds come up while unground seeds go down. Coarse grind. 

4. Mix in the sugar, tamarind paste and water (3/4 cup but adjust according to the water contributed by Tamarind paste+green chillies). Run the mixer once so that they get thoroughly mixed. 

Serve with hot rice. 

1. If you want to refrigerate this pacchadi to last for a few days, use dry red chillies. However, if you prepare a small quantity for immediate consumption as was made traditionally, use green chillies.
2. This simple pacchadi has extensive scope for improvization. You can add roasted Cumin seeds. You can omit the jaggery and include some roasted peanuts, or grated coconut, Or roasted Chickpeas (Putnala pappu). Follow your heart.
3. Ingredient measures can be adjusted to taste.
4. Sesame seeds are rich in oil & very tiny in size whereby they get heated up very quickly and can get burnt in a matter of seconds. Hence, while roasting, make sure the heat is low and keep stirring frequently for even browning. They continue to brown even when taken off the heat. 
5. Sugar caramalizes if heated. Mixer jar & blades heat up while grinding. Clumps of sugar can stick to the heated mixer jar blades and spoil the apparatus if not mixed in properly. Therefore, be sure to thoroughly mix in the sugar right at the end.

Culture and Health:
This pacchadi is rich in protein and essential minerals.
Sesame seed is a wonder food. It is an excellent source of heavy metals and minerals such as Calcium, Magnesium, Iron, Copper, Manganese. It is rich in antioxidants and has anti-cancer properties. The unpolished creamy-brown Sesame seed is better for health since the husk is rich in minerals while the polished shiny white seed loses most of its mineral content. A common traditional Indian snack is prepared by combining Jaggery-Sesame seed, the perfect protein-carbohydrate balance food. Ayurveda classifies Sesame seed as a 'heat giving' food. It enhances the metabolism and is advised to be consumed during severe winter months. 
Sesame seed oil is extensively used in cooking. It doesn't easily go rancid  & preserves food due to its high anti-oxidant load. Hence, it is used in preparing long-life preserves such as Avakaya & Mukkala pacchadi . It is a very light oil that can be easily absorbed into the skin, an ideal base for perfumed oils, massage oils, medicated hair oils in Ayurveda.  
The Sesame plant was first domesticated & farmed in India, it has been found in the ruins of the Harappan civilization. Unprocessed whole black Sesame seed is part of the Nava dhanya used in Yagnam. It is called तिल (Til) in Sanskrit. In fact, the word तैल (Teyla), Sanskrit for Oil, has its origins in Til. It is considered the next best to Cow ghee for use in religious ceremonies and can be offered to the Elements. One cannot stress the importance of this tiny little seed in Hindu culture.

My mother told me about this recipe. It is part of the quick బండ పచ్చడులు (Banda pacchadulu) that her grandmother used to make with a mortar-pestle.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

పిండిమిరియం: Pindi Miriyam- Pigeon pea broth with black pepper & banana plantain

(Serving for 4)

1 cup Toor Dal/Kandipappu
1 Medium size Plantain/Arati kaya
Salt to taste
1/8 tsp turmeric/pasupu
Big marble size tamarind

For paste

1/2tsp Rice/biyyam
2tbsp Grated Coconut Powder
1Tsp Black Pepper
1 Tbsp Chana Dal
1 Tbsp Urad Dal
1/2 Tbsp Coriander Seeds
2 Red Chili(option)


1/2 Tsp Avalu/mustard seeds
1/4 Tsp jeera/ jeelakarra/ Cumin seeds
Pinch of heeng
Few curry leaves/karivepaku.


. Peel banana plantain and cut into desired size pieces
. cook them adding turmeric and little bit of salt until soft
. Sqeeze tamarind and keep it aside.
. Pressure cook Toor Dal Keep it aside.
. Heat a pan and dry roast Rice, Black Pepper, Chana Dal, Urad Dal, Coriander Seeds & Red Chili's except Grated Coconut. Now grind them all into paste along with Grated Coconut and Salt.
. Add the paste ,tamarind puree to Toor Dal, plantain and cook them by adding 21/2 cups water in low heat for 10mins
. Heat a pan with oil and add the seasoning to it. Once the mustard seeds start spluttering, add the heeng and curry leaves to it and mix the seasoning with the Pindi Miriyam..

This item tastes best with rice.

Variations : Instead of banana plantain we can use potato or beans or chamagadda.

కంది పచ్చడి: Kandi pacchadi: Pigeon peas chutney

Serves: Three. Preparation time: 15 minutes

1 Cup Pigeon peas (Tuvar dal, Kandi pappu)
3 Dry red chillies
3 Tsp Cumin seeds
1 Tsp Salt or to taste
1/2 clove Garlic

1. Dry roast the peas on low heat until they turn golden brown and give off an aroma, approximately 3 minutes.

2. Break up the dry red chillies into smaller bits and dry roast them on low heat until they are brown-black & give off an aroma, around 1 minute. 

3. Dry roast the Cumin seeds on low heat until they turn darker & give off an aroma, it takes less than a minute. If making a small quantity, you can drop them into the roasting peas when they are almost done. 

4. Crush the garlic clove and dry roast it until it turns golden in a few seconds. If making a small quantity, you can drop it into the roasting peas when they are almost done instead of roasting separately.  

5. Grinding: When all the roasted ingredients cool down, grind them to a powder along with Salt. 

6. Add some water and grind once again so that it is evenly mixed in. 

7. Add water until the preparation looks a little runny. The peas soak up the water in a few minutes and the consistency improves. 

Serve with hot rice and a generous topping of ghee
This pacchadi goes well with Ullipaya pacchi pulusu. It is delicious when mixed into rice with Avakaya

1. You may use a drop of oil while roasting the ingredients. 
2. Stir the ingredients frequently during the roasting process to ensure uniform browning, make sure the heat source is low as the ingredients can get burnt within a few seconds. 
3. Adjust dry red chillies, salt, Cumin to taste. 
4. Some recipes include grated coconut. 
5. This pacchadi is best prepared fresh before mealtime. If left over, the ground pigeon peas absorb the water & dry into a soggy lump. Hence, leave the almost-done pacchadi at step 5. Follow up on step 6 & 7 just before mealtime. 

Culture & Health:
The term 'Pacchadi' usually conjures up the image of a fruit or vegetable in our mind. However, traditional Telugu cuisine has Pacchadis such as Kandi pacchadi, Pesara pacchadi, Nuvvula pacchadi which are made from grains/pulses.
This genre of pacchadis is rich in protein. Combined with rice, it makes a protein-carbohydrate balanced diet that only needs some fresh vegetable/fruit to supply vitamins. Hence, it is paired with liquid vegetable preparations such as Ullipaya pacchi pulusuVankaya pacchi pulusuMenti pulusu, etc...
These pacchadis are prepared fresh daily in small quantities, they are also called 'Banda pacchadulu' (బండ పచ్చడులు) since they were traditionally just ground with a mortar-boulder using very few basic ingredients.
It is also eaten mixed into hot rice and Avakaya.

This preparation is a star item on the Chivukula family menu.
The recipe is courtesy Manju pinni.

దోసకాయ పచ్చడి: Dosakaya Pacchadi: Round Yellow Cucumber Chutney

Serves: Fills a 450 ml/16 fl oz bottle. Preparation time: 1 hour including assembling ingredients, washing, chopping, roasting, grinding. 

4 Round yellow Apple cucumbers (Dosakaya)                    
2 Tbsp Oil
2 heaped Tsp Split Black Gram
4 Dry Red chillies
1 heaped Tsp Coriander seeds
1 heaped Tsp Cumin seeds
1 level Tsp Mustard seeds
1 level Tsp Turmeric
1 level Tsp Asafoetida
1 level Tsp Fenugreek powder
1 heaped Tsp or to taste; Salt
1/4 Tsp Sugar
3 sprigs Cilantro

1. Wash Dosakaya and pat dry. Cut into half, peel the outer skin.  Scoop out the clump of seeds from its middle and discard. Finely chop into small pieces. Set aside. 
2. Wash Cilantro in fresh water and chop fine. Set aside. 
3. In a saucepan/wok, heat the oil on medium-low flame. As it is heating, break dry red chillies into small pieces. 
4. When oil is medium hot, add Black gram and dry red chillies. Stir frequently so that all ingredients are evenly browned. When black gram turns golden yellow, add Coriander & Cumin seeds. When black gram turns golden red, add Mustard seeds, Asafoetida & Turmeric (if you add turmeric initially, you won't be able to make out the colour difference in black gram), mustard seeds will splutter.
5. Switch of the heat and add Fenugreek powder. Let this tempering cool. 
6. Grinding: First grind the spice mix resulting from steps 4&5 along with the salt. Next, add the finely chopped Dosakaya and grind with a quick spurt of power on whipping/Pulse mode. Open the mixer jar, add sugar and mix the contents so that the mashed pieces come up while untouched pieces go down. Grind once again on whipping/pulse mode. Repeat this process until all pieces are roughly mashed, around 4 times for the quantity mentioned in this recipe. 
7. Transfer contents into a clean glass jar, garnish with the Cilantro and refrigerate. 

1. Dosakayas sometimes turn out bitter. Hence, while chopping the Dosakaya, taste a tiny piece of each fruit. Discard any bitter fruit otherwise the entire dish can turn out bitter.
2. Manju pinni suggests: If you like whole crisp grains in your recipe, you can grind the tempering-Dosakaya together so that the blackgram doesn't get properly ground down. Or, you can grind Dosakaya and pour the tempering over it.
3. One can use green chillies too in this recipe.
4. The basic tempering mix used in this recipe has been described earlier in Beerakaya, Tomato pacchadis too. Several chutneys can be made with this same spice base. You can prepare the spice base to last for a week and make a fresh chutney everyday using a small quantity of fresh vegetable and some of the spice base. This way, we can have quick variety frequently.
5. Dosakaya is a sour fruit, hence the recipe doesn't need a souring agent. However, if you feel the need, you may squeeze in a few drops of lemon juice just before serving, or mix in some tamarind paste.
6. If you don't have Dosakaya, you can use the ordinary English cucumber, it closely mimics the flavour, but will need a souring agent (tamarind paste or lemon juice).
7. If you intend to make a large quantity of this chutney, it may be advisable to dry roast the Coriander and Cumin seeds separately and then mix into browned black gram & red chillies. This is because all these spices have different cooking times and easily stay undercooked/get burnt within a few seconds of delay.
8. Coriander & Cumin Seeds may be substituted with powders.
9. If using whole Fenugreek seeds: Dry roast them to a brown-black, let them cool, powder and then add to the cooled tempering.

The-Hunt-For-An-English-Name, Culture and Health:
Dosakaya is a South Indian cultivar of Cucumber/Melon. It belongs to the 'Cucurbitaceae' plant family, to which all gourds & melons belong. Cucumber (Cucumis sativus) originated in India. Hence, there are several species and cultivars of cucumber/melon/gourd unique to the Indian subcontinent, with no Western/English equivalents. 
It can be translated at best as a round yellow cucumber... Some people describe it as a 'Lemon Cucumber', others call it an 'Apple Cucumber', but it is really not one. I even heard the term 'Melon Cucumber'. After much research into the species of edible cucumbers & melons (during which I collided into more confused people like me, without any conclusive results), I concluded that it does not have an accurate English name, the closest I got to in scientific names was "Cucumis melo var. agrestis". 
The presence of the chemical 'Phenylthiocarbamide' is believed to lend bitter tones to some fruit. Dosakaya is rich in vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals, low in fat. Fruits/vegetables from the 'Cucurbitaceae' plant family are full of water & fibre, need very little oil to cook and are said to be very good for health according to Ayurveda. Traditional Telugu cuisine exploits a variety of these fruits/vegetables: Beerakaya, Potlakaya, Boodida gummadikaya, Erra gummadi, Kakarakaya to name a few.  
This pacchadi is especially very good for health since the Dosakaya is consumed raw. 

I learnt this recipe from my mom-in-law(Indira aunty), she cooks an amazing variety of delicious pacchadis and podis. My foray into the world of pacchadis started all because of Krishna's love for pacchadis. Now I am addicted to aunty's pacchadi recipes even more than he is!
I added some minor precautions/suggestions from various sources into it. 

Monday, April 19, 2010

దోసకాయ పప్పు: Dosakaaya Pappu- Pigeon peas with Yellow Cucumber

(Serves 2)

1 medium size yellow Cucumber/ dosakaya
2 green chillys/pachimirapakayalu
1 cup toordal/kandhipappu
few leaves of cilanthro
salt to taste
1/2 tsp chilly powder/karam (as you desire)
2 tsp oil
1/4 tsp avalu/mustard seeds
1 tbsp minapappu/uraddal
1/4tsp jeera/jeelakarra
pinch of heeng


Pressure cook toordal for 3 whistles
Wash and peel yellow cucumber. Cut into half and remove seeds.
Taste the pieces.(some times it tastes bitter, donot use if it is bitter)
Cut into pieces as shown.
Cut chilys length wise make two halves.
Take a bowl put all the pieces, chilly slices and add 1/2 cup water cook until soft.
If you want it more sour add 1/2 Marble size tamarind puree.
Add salt , chilly powder and cooked dal.

Heat oil in a pan and add seasoning.
Add this seasoning to the cooked dal and garnish with cilanthro.

This pappu goes with rice and dal.

మెంతి ఆకు-టమాట అన్నం: Menti Aaku Tamata annam- Fenugreek greens & Tomato rice

Serves: Four as a snack. Preparation time: 1 hour including assembling ingredients, washing, chopping, cooking.

1 bunch Fenugreek greens 
2 medium sized Ripe Tomatoes
1.5'' Ginger piece.
1.5 cloves Garlic
1 Tsp Cumin seeds
1 Tsp Turmeric
1 medium sized Onion
4 Green chillies or to taste
1 Tbsp Salt or to taste
0.5 Tsp Sugar
2 Tbsps Oil
2 Rice cooker cups of Rice
3 stalks of Cilantro
Optional: Green peas

1. Wash the rice and boil it. Boil it with slightly less water (2 Tbsps less than normal) so that it is well cooked but grainy in texture. Set aside and leave to cool. 
2. Meanwhile, pluck the leaves from the stalks of Methi greens. Discard the stalks. We can use any tender stalks if they are not fibrous. Wash the Methi & Cilantro thoroughly in clean running water. Immerse them in salt water for ten minutes if you wish. Place in a colander to let the water drain out. 
3. With a mortar & pestle, pound the ginger and set aside. Pound the garlic and set aside. Pound the green chillies or chop them very fine and set aside. 
4. Finely chop the Onion and set aside. 
5. Chop tomatoes into chunks and set aside. 
6. Finely chop the Methi greens and set aside. Also chop the Cilantro. 
7. In a wok, heat the oil. Add Cumin seeds. When they splutter, add the turmeric, Garlic paste, Ginger paste, Green chilli paste and Onions. Let it cook until onion browns. You can add the salt at this stage since salt draws out moisture from the onions & makes them crisp. However, traditional cooks like to add salt right at the end. 
8. Mix in the chopped Methi greens and tomato chunks.  Add red chilli powder if you like the taste (optional). 
9. Cover and cook for six to seven minutes by clock. The tomatoes soften and make the mixture go soupy. 
10. Mix in the sugar (and the salt if you didn't add it earlier) and rice. Let it cook for a minute. The rice soaks up the soupy juices and turns out dry. 
11. Garnish with chopped Cilantro. 

Serve with a Perugu pacchadi or Raita
1. Adjust the garlic, ginger, green chillies according to taste. 
2. Traditional cooks say that souring agents like tomato/tamarind etc halt the cooking process. If you feel touchy about that issue, let the Methi greens cook for sometime before adding the tomato chunks. I add them together since I like to expose greens to the minimum cooking time, my greens just get cooked along with the tomato instead of initially being cooked & then cooked again while the tomato cooks. 
3. I cook the Methi greens for only 6 or 7 minutes since I make a small quantity (it cooks quickly). Also, it is advisable to cook greens for no longer than 8 minutes to preserve most of the vitamins and phytochemicals. However, traditional cooks may complain that the greens are still raw, you can cook it for longer if you wish!
 4. This same recipe can be made with Pudina (Mint) greens instead of Methi greens & Tomato. Also, a mix of greens can be used (Spinach, Mint, Fenugreek, Cilantro). However, remember not to club Tomatoes with Spinach. 
5. Try tossing in a handful of green peas for taste, nutrition and visual appeal!

I have fond memories of this dish, mom made it once when my sister & I were in an 'I-am-not-hungry' phase, this made our mouths water and our stomachs rumble!! One of my all time favourites. Very simple to make, great taste along with the goodness of green leafy vegetable...
Aahaahaahaa, try this out if you want to know what "Yummy" means!

ముక్కల పచ్చడి- Mukkala pacchadi: Green mango-mustard-chilli marinade

Serves: Fills a 1 litre bottle. Preparation time: 1 hour including preparation of ingredients. Marination takes three days. 

2 large Green Mangoes (5 '' in length) 
1 heaped Tbsp Salt 
3 heaped Tbsp Mustard seed powder (Avapindi)
1.5 heaped Tbsp Red Chilli powder
1/2 level Tsp Turmeric 

1/3 cup Sesame oil (Til ka teyl, Nuvvula nuné)
4 Dry red chillies- broken into tiny pieces
1 Tsp Mustard seed
1 level Tsp Fenugreek powder 

1. Wash  green mangoes and pat dry. Dice into 3/4'' cubes. Discard the seed. 
2. Take a large mixing bowl. Add the diced mangoes. Add the Salt, Avapindi, Turmeric and Red chilli powder. Mix well. Set aside. The salt draws juices out of the mango and the mango marinates in the resulting Avapindi-Turmeric-Salt-Red chilli sauce. 
3. Heat the Sesame oil in a Tempering ladle or wok. Add the Dry red chilly pieces and roast until they brown & give off an aroma. Add the mustard seeds, they will splutter. Switch off the heat and add the Fenugreek powder. Let this tempering cool.
4. Pour the cooled tempering over the mangoes in the mixing bowl and mix well. 
5. Bottle into a clean dry glass jar. Let it stand still for three days. Mix well on the third day. 
6. Refrigerate. 

Goes well with hot rice. 
1. The ingredient meausures mentioned in this recipe are standard cooking measures. Hence, 1 heaped Tbsp of cooking measure may be upto 2.5 Tbsp of an ordinary cutlery tablespoon.
2. Avapindi sometimes turns bitter if left standing. Hence, powder mustard seeds just before you want to make this pacchadi.
3. Make sure that the tempering cools properly before adding it to the mangoes. Hot/warm oil can make the Avapindi turn bitter. 
4. Small Indian green mango cultivars are best suited for this recipe since they are sour. If the green mango is not sour enough (a common drawback with the large green mango cultivar available in N.America), you may add some Citric acid powder (one or two pinches is enough, depends on the mango. It imparts an artificial flavour so be careful not to put too much.).
5. If you do not have Fenugreek powder: Roast whole Fenugreek seeds until they turn dark brown-black. Let them cool and then powder them. Add this pre-roasted powder to the cooled tempering from step 3 and mix into the mangoes.

This same recipe can be replicated with Dosakaya or firm red tomatoes instead of green mango, it is then called Dosakaya mukkala pacchadi or Tomato Avakaya respectively.

This is Manju pinni's recipe. Even the photo is of Manju pinni's Mukkala pacchadi which she made for us. 
Since this recipe uses Avapindi, it is a close cousin of Avakaya, Krishna grades it to an almost 'A', all other pacchadis are inferior B graders in his eyes ;-) 
I have memories of my mom making green mango mukkala pacchadi and Tomato Avakaya, she would eat it all by herself since we kids weren't fond of pickles. Her colleagues tasted some of her Chilli & Tomato pacchadis and told her that they'll sell like hot cakes if she bottled some & tried selling it!!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

పెసర ఆవకాయ: Pesara avakaya- Green mango in Mung bean-mustard-chilli marinade Pickle


3 Mangoes (medium size)
2 1/2 cups pesarapappu/moongdal
1/2 cup chilly powder/karam (if you want little spicy add more)
1/2 cup mustard seeds/aavalu
1/2 cup salt
2 1/2 cups gingely(sesame) oil/nuvvula nune


Clean mangoes and wipe with cloth.
Cut the mango into half and remove the seed from inside. Now, cut the mango into small(desired) size pieces as shown in the picture.
Make powder of moong dal and mustard seeds separately.
Mix moong dal powder, mustard powder,chilly powder and salt.
Add oil into the mixture .
Take small amount of mango pieces and little amount of mixture and mix well.
Take this into a glass bottle and do the same with all the pieces.
Now close with tight lid.
Mix well again on 3rd day.
Your avakaya will be ready to eat after five days.

This is our family favorite dish. This will go with rice, breakfast and snacks.
This recipe I learnt from my mother-in-law.

పొట్లకాయ పెరుగు పచ్చడి: Potlakaya perugu pacchadi- Sautéed snake gourd in yogurt gravy


2 to 3 Snake gourds (Potlakayalu) (small)
2 cups Yogurt (Perugu)
2 green chillys (Pachimirapakayalu)
salt to taste
cilantro for garnishing

For tempering/Tiragamata:
1tbsp minapappu
1/2 tsp Avaalu/mustard seeds
1/2 tsp jeera
1tbsp oil

Chop snake gourd into small pieces
Heat 1/2 tbsp oil in a pan and add chopped pieces and cook until it becomes soft. Let it cool.
Take curd and add salt, chopped chillys and cooked gourd.
Now, add thadaka and garnish with cilanthro.

This item goes with rice and roti.

Friday, April 2, 2010

టమేట పచ్చడి- Tamata Pacchadi: Tomato Chutney

Serves: Fills a 500 ml bottle. Preparation time: 30 minutes.

Green Tomato Chutney

6 medium sized Green Tomatoes
5 Green chillies
6 tsp Oil
2 Tsp Mustard seeds (Rai, Avalu)
1 Tsp Turmeric
1 shallow Tsp Asafoetida
1 shallow Tsp Fenugreek powder
1 Tbsp Tamarind paste
1 Tsp or to taste; Salt
1/4 Tsp Sugar
3 sprigs Cilantro

1. Chop Tomatoes, Green Chillies into chunks. Fine chop the Cilantro.
2. Heat 4 Tsps oil. Add Green chillies and Green tomatoes. Cover and cook on low flame until tomatoes soften, around 6 minutes.
Add Tamarind paste and leave to cool.
3. Heat 2 Tsps oil in a pan. Add Mustard seeds. When they splutter, switch off flame and add Fenugreek powder, Asafoetida, Turmeric. Let it cool. 
4. Grinding:
First grind the spice mix from step 3. Next add the vegetables from step 2, mix in salt & sugar and grind on pulse/whipping mode with quick spurts of power so that the tomatoes are not completely mashed
5. Add Cilantro, transfer into a bottle, and refrigerate.

Ripe (Red) Tomato Chutney

6 medium sized Ripe (Red) Tomatoes
3 Tsps Oil
2 heaped Tsp Split Black Gram
4 Dry Red chillies
1 heaped Tsp Coriander seeds
1 heaped Tsp Cumin seeds
1 level Tsp Mustard seeds
1 level Tsp Turmeric
1 level Tsp Asafoetida
1 level Tsp Fenugreek powder
1 Tbsp Tamarind paste
1 Tsp or to taste; Salt
1/4 Tsp Sugar
3 sprigs Cilantro

1. Chop Tomatoes into chunks. Finely chop the Cilantro. Break up the Dry red chilli into small bits.
2. Heat 1 Tsp oil in a pan. Add tomatoes, cover and let simmer until tomatoes wither/go tender, but not completely done. Add Tamarind paste and leave to cool.
3. Heat 2 Tsps oil in pan. Add Black Gram and Dry Red chillies. When black gram turns pale gold, add Coriander and Cumin seeds. When Black Gram goes golden brown (dry chillies would be dark brown & giving off an aroma by now), add Mustard seeds, they'll splutter. Switch off flame and add Fenugreek powder, Turmeric and Asafoetida. Leave to cool.
4. Grinding:
First add the spice mix from step 2 and grind. Then add Salt, Sugar and the Tomatoes from step 3 and coarse grind on pulse/whipping mode with quick spurts of power.
5. Mix in the chopped cilantro. Bottle and refrigerate.

1. You can mix and match the ingredients as per taste, like I made a red-green tomato pacchadi recipe mix since my green tomatoes were actually yellowing.
2. Manju pinni suggests: Prepare the chutney first and then pour the tempering  of step 3 over it right at the end. This way, the spices smell fresh, the seeds (black gram, mustard) are whole & crisp instead of being ground down.
3. If preparing a large quantity, it may be wise to first dry roast the Cumin and Coriander seeds separately and then add them to the fried black gram-red chillies. This is because all these spices have different cooking times and can easily stay undercooked/get burnt within a few seconds of misjudged timing.
4. Cumin & Coriander seeds can be substituted with powders. 
5. If using whole Fenugreek seeds: Roast to a black-brown, leave to cool and powder. Then add to the cooled tempering from step 3

Culture & Health:
Green or Ripe tomato pacchadi is eaten with fresh hot rice & ghee. It is also an excellent accompaniment with Dosas, Idlis, Uttappams. It is an awesome spread for sandwiches and savoury snacks. Totally yummy with yogurt-rice.
Fresh pacchadis are full of vitamins and antioxidants, they can be made with very little oil & salt for the health conscious.

The Green Tomato pacchadi recipe is my mom-in-law's (Indira aunty), Krishna's favourite favourite favourite.
The Ripe tomato pacchadi recipe is mom's, it was an ever-green (or should I say ever-red) part of our family menu, my sister LOVED it like crazy, and mom makes it frequently.
Do you guys know what Tomato is called in Telugu? A local cultivar that produced small sour fruit was called "Ramamulagakaaya" during my mother's childhood. Of course, it is a now-extinct name, we only see normal tomatoes in the market, and Tomato is Tamata for us! :-)

Thursday, April 1, 2010

గుత్తి దొండకాయ: Kurina Dondakaya- Stuffed Tindora (Ivy gourd)

This is the 50th recipe of our blog and 20th recipe of mine.


15 dondakayalu/tindora
2 tsp senagapindi/chana flour
1/2 tsp karam/chilly powder(as desired)
salt to taste
1/4 tsp jeera/cumin powder
1 to 2 tbsp oil to fry


Wash and trim two sides of tindora and slit them length wise.
Steam them for 10 min
Mix chana flour, chilli powder, jeera powder and salt in a bowl
Stuff tindoras wit the above mixture.
Heat oil in a pan and fry them on a low flame till they turn to brown color.
Serve them hot with rice.