Thursday, 30 April 2015

Netholi Meen Peera / Kerala style Anchovies with shallots and coconut

Meen Peera / thoran is a kerala style side dish with fish and fresh coconut and shallots. Fresh anchovies / nethili meen is cooked with lots of coconut, green chillies, ginger, garlic and shallots. So easy to make and can be made quickly. Best served with steamed rice and fish curry.



  • 300 Grams fresh anchovies / nethili meen - ( remove head , retain the tail,  clean and wash with salt and turmeric powder)
  • 1/2 Cup fresh coconut slices
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Jeera / cumin seeds
  • 5 Shallots chopped finely
  • 1/2 inch ginger chopped finely
  • 2 large garlic cloves crushed and the chopped finely
  • 2 Green chillies ground to paste
  • 2 sprigs of curry leaves julienned
  • 1/2 cup raw mango cut into small cubes
  • 1/4 Teaspoon turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon of tamarind extract ( Use kodampuli for authentic taste)
  • 2 Tablespoons of coconut oil


1. Add coconut and cumin seeds to the food processor and pulse it 4 times until it resembles coarse powder. Set aside
2. In a small mixing bowl, mix together ground coconut, shallots, ginger, garlic, julienned curry, green chilli paste
3. Sprinkle 1/2 Teaspoon salt , 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder to the above mixture and toss / mix together
4. In a wok / kadai, add nethili / anchovies
5. Add the coconut mixture we prepare at step number 3 to the anchovies
6. Add 1 tablespoon tamarind extract
7. Add 1/4 cup water
8. Now place the wok on the medium flame and cover it with a lid
9. Cook for 2 minutes
10. Then add raw mangoes and toss the mixture gently. Handle gently, otherwise anchovies might break / fall apart
11. Cook for 5 minutes or until the water evaporates
12. Finally add coconut oil to the nethili peera and toss
13. Serve hot with steamed rice and fish curry

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Honey Lemon Ginger Tea

Immune boosting, flu fighting tea with lemon and ginger ! Sip this tea to get relief from sore throat, flu, cough, runny nose, head aches. A natural way to help fight flu and increase your immunity.

Yield : 2 Servings
Recipe Source : Femina magazine


  • 3 Cups of water
  • 1/4 Cup Honey
  • 1/2 Inch fresh ginger piece
  • 1 Large strip of lemon rind ( Just the yellow part of lemon skin)
  • Juice of Half lemon
  • 2 Tea Bags ( I used twinings Darjeeling tea bags)


1. Peel ginger and slice the ginger into thin coins
2. In a small pot, add water, honey, ginger, lemon rind and bring it to boil
3. Switch off the flame and stir in lemon juice
4. Add tea bags to the pot and let the tea steep in
5. Once the tea is ready, remove tea bags and serve tea in cups


Chin Chin - sweet pastry squares

Chin Chins are deep fried West African pastry squares. These are crispy, crunchy on the outside and soft and melting from the inside. These cute little bites are flavored with cinnamon. Perfect tea time snack !



  • 2 and 1/2 Cups of all purpose flour or maida
  • 2/3 Cup of granulated white sugar
  • a big pinch of salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon / cinnamon powder
  • 6 Tablespoons cold butter
  • 2 Large eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons cold milk
  • Peanut oil or vegetable oil for deep frying ( I used peanut oil)


1. In a large bowl mix together flour, sugar, salt , baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg
2. Add cold butter to the flour and using a pastry cutter / blender blend the butter in the flour until it is crumbly mixture
3. In a  small bowl, beat eggs using a fork. Then stir in milk in the eggs and beat again
4. Make a well in the centre of the flour butter mixture and pour egg milk mixture in the well
5. Using hands mix the dough until it comes together
6. Roll the dough into ball, wrap it with cling film and  refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes
7. After 30 minutes, roll the dough into sheet of 1/4 inch thickness. sprinkle flour if the dough is sticking.
8. Using a pizza cutter, cut small 2 inch squares
9. In a pan / wok / kadai heat oil for deep frying
10. Once the oil is hot, reduce the flame to medium. Drop in 10 to 15 pastry squares / chin chins in the hot oil and deep fry until they are golden
11. Repeat the process for the remaining chin chins
12. Drain on paper towel and cool completely
13. Once cooled, store in airtight container

Friday, 24 April 2015

Mushroom and chickpea open faced sandwich

An open faced sandwich with garlic herbed butter sautéed mushrooms and chickpeas topped with cheese and made on pan / tawa. Hearty and filling sandwich to serve for breakfast / after school. You can grill the sandwich on the griller  / sandwich maker. I was feeling lazy to do so and making it on tawa was quicker than grilling it on the sandwich maker.


  • 4 sandwich bread slices
  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 Cup sautéed mushroom and chickpeas
  • 4 Cheese slices ( I used amul cheese)
  • a pinch of red chilli flake
  • 1 teaspoon chopped cilantro leaves


1. Apply butter on both sides of bread slices and set aside
2. Top breads with generous portion of mushroom and chickpea mixture
3. Then top the mixture with a cheese slice
4. Sprinkle with red chilli flakes ( optional )
5. I used tawa / pan to make sandwiches. However you can use grill or sandwich maker
6. Place bread on the hot tawa / pan . Reduce the flame to the lowest setting. Cover the pan with a lid
7. Cook until the cheese on the bread melts
8. Serve hot with ketchup

Monday, 13 April 2015

Chilli Garlic Lemon butter prawns

Chilli garlic lemon prawns are super easy to make and tastes delicious. Natural sweetness of the prawns pairs well with garlic and spicy chilli. This is the most easiest way to prepare prawns and can be done so quickly , especially for busy week night dinner.  I served it with egg fried rice as a side. These are good as an appetizer with dip.


To Marinate ( 30 minutes)

  • 300 Grams raw uncooked Prawns - shelled , deveined
  • Juice of 1/2 Lemon
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Kashmiri red chilli powder / paprika

To Cook the prawns

  • 2 Tablespoon salted butter
  • 3 Garlic cloves chopped finely
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli flakes
  • 1/2 Teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 Teaspoon dried thyme + rosemary + Oregano mixture
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped cilantro leaves / parsley
  • salt to taste
  • Juice of 1/2 Lemon to squeeze
  • Lemon wedges to serve
  • 1/2 Tablespoon chopped cilantro leaves for garnish


1. Add raw prawns in a zip lock bag
2. In a small bowl, mix together minced garlic, salt, Kashmiri red chilli powder, juice of 1/2 lemon
3. Pour this mixture into the zip lock bag , close the bag and mix / toss to coat prawns with the marinate. Refrigerate for 30 minutes
4. To cook  the prawns : In a skillet / pan / wok, heat butter. When the butter melts, add chopped garlic and fry until they are light golden. Do not burn garlic



5. Reduce the flame to low. Add red chilli flakes, ground black pepper, dried thyme, rosemary, oregano mixture and give it a nice stir


6. Add marinated prawns along with the marinate juice to the pan

7. Increase the flame to medium high and cook the prawns 2 minutes on each side or until they are pink and cooked through
8. Switch off the flame and squeeze juice of half lemon and sprinkle chopped cilantro leaves
9. Serve hot immediately with lemon wedges and your favourite dip

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Cucumber mint lemonade with sweet basil Seeds

Stay well hydrated this summer with this natural body coolant drink - Cucumber, mint lemonade with sweet basil seeds. Cucumber and basil seeds are high in vitamins, Iron and Potassium. Both cucumber and sweet basil seeds are natural body coolants. Cucumber helps in weight loss and sweet basil seeds keeps filled for hours. Have this drink for breakfast and I can guarantee you that you will not feel hungry till lunch time. And one more health benefit of this juice is that it is good for your skin. Include this drink twice a week to get glowing skin.


  • 2 Lemons
  • Zest of a lemon
  • 1/2 Organic cucumber sliced ( 8 to 9 slices)
  • 4 Tablespoons of granulated white sugar
  • 1 Cup water to prepare the sweet syrup
  • 500 ml chilled water
  • 2 Lemons
  • 6 fresh mint leaves
  • 2 Tablespoon sweet basil seeds - soak them in 1/3 cup of regular tap water for 10 minutes
  • a big pinch of salt


1. In a pan, add 4 tablespoons of sugar and 1 cup water and bring it to boil. Reduce the flame to medium and cook the sugar syrup for 5 minutes until it thickens slightly. Switch off the flame and cool the syrup completely
2. In a food processor / juicer add sliced cucumber , mint leaves and process until the cucumbers are pureed to thick paste
3. Squeeze out juice of 2 lemons
4. In a large mixing bowl, add lemon juice, cucumber puree, sugar syrup and 500 ml of chilled water
5. Give it a nice stir. Add pinch of salt and stir in
6. Now, strain this lemonade through a strainer to remove any cucumber seeds or mint leaves. After straining the lemonade will look clear and see through
7. Stir in lemon zest and pour the lemonade to the pitcher
8. Pour in serving glass and top it with soaked basil seeds / sabja seeds

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Tandoori Prawns

Here is a quick and easy to make prawn appetizer / starter. It takes less than 5 minutes to put everything together and marinate for 20 minutes and then bake in the oven until crispy and have a nice char. These are spicy, sweet and tastes delicious. Serve it with red onion slices and a generous squeeze of fresh lemon juice and serve hot.  I used fresh prawns today, however you can use frozen prawns too. This one is definitely a crowd pleaser !  Serve it with mint cilantro chutney or your favourite dip.


  • 1 Cup Prawns
  • 1 and 1/2 Tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 Tablespoon plain natural yogurt / curd
  • 1 Teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Kashmiri red chilli powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli flakes
  • a pinch of turmeric powder
  • a big pinch of cumin powder
  • a pinch of Italian seasoning
  • a big pinch of garlic powder
  • Salt to taste
  • Juice of half lemon
  • 1 small red onion for serving
  • 1 Lemon cut into wedges for serving
  • 1 Teaspoon chopped cilantro leaves for garnish


1. Remove prawn shell, head and tail and devein the prawns
2. In a large mixing bowl, add prawns. Add vegetable oil, yogurt, ground black pepper, red chilli powder, red chilli flakes, turmeric powder, cumin powder, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt to taste and toss gently to coat all prawns with the spice mix. Set aside to marinate for 20 minutes
3. After 20 minutes, grease a baking tray / cookie sheet with generous spray of oil
4. Transfer the prawns to the cookie sheet and spread them with little space
5. Bake at 200 C in the preheated oven for 8 minutes. Remove the sheet from the oven, If there is any water in the pan, drain the water using a scoop / laddle
6. Flip the prawns so that the other side also gets cooked. Return the tray to the oven and bake at 200 C for 5 more minutes until all water evaporates and prawn is cooked through
7. Now change the oven to grill mode  / broiler and cook it for a quick 2 minutes until the prawns have a nice char on them
8. Remove the prawns from the baking tray. Squeeze juice of half lemon and toss
9. Serve with red onion slices and lemon wedges. And serve immediately

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Spicy Prawn Curry

Spicy prawn curry is super easy and on your table in less than 20 minutes. Perfect for quick week night dinner. Best served with steamed rice or roti.



  • 200 Grams fresh prawns - remove outer shell, devein
  • 2 Tablespoon vegetable oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon

To Grind

  • 12 Inch piece fresh ginger
  • 6 Garlic cloves
  • 6 shallots
  • 1/2 Teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon whole black peppercorns
  • 2 Tablespoon grated fresh coconut
  • 4 Dry red chillies
  • 1/4 water to grind


1. In a large pan, heat vegetable oil. When the oil is hot, add prawns, sprinkle with salt and fry on high flame until prawns turn light pink and half way cooked through. Remove from oil and drain on paper towel
2. Meanwhile, grind all the ingredients listed under to Grind to fine paste
3. Add this ground paste to the remaining oil in the pan and fry the masala on low flame for 10 minutes until the raw smell of ginger goes and oil starts separating from the mixture
4. Season with salt. Add 1/2 cup of water and cook the curry on high flame until it reaches required consistency
5. Add the prawns and cook in the curry for 5 more minutes
6. Switch off the flame and squeeze fresh lemon juice
7. Serve hot with steamed rice or roti


Yam Mamuang - Thai Green Mango salad

Thai Mango salad with peanut dressing. Super simple, easy to put together and tastes delicious. My family's favourite salad from the Thai restaurant in Chennai. It is refreshing, light, sweet and tangy !




  • one large green mango / Raw Mango ( I used totapuri mango)
  • 1 Carrot

For the salad dressing

  • 1 Shallot
  • 1/3 Cup roasted peanuts
  • 1 Tablespoon soy Sauce
  • 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli flakes
  • Juice of 1/2 Lemon
  • a big pinch of salt
  • a big pinch of ground star anise / star anise powder


1. Cut raw mango into thin strips. Alternatively , you can grate the mango into thin strips
2. Peel carrot and cut the carrot into thin strips. Combine mango and carrots strips in a large bowl
3. In a food processor, add roasted peanuts and shallots and pulse it couple of times to coarse powder
4. In a small bowl, prepare the dressing - Add soy sauce, brown sugar and mix well until sugar dissolves in soy sauce. Then squeeze lemon juice and season with a pinch of salt and star anise powder
5. Add ground peanut and shallots paste to the soy sauce dressing
6. pour this dressing over the cut mango and carrot
7. Sprinkle red chilli flakes according to your taste
8. Toss gently and serve

Skinny watermelon Mojito

A refreshing and light watermelon mojito with citrus rum , crushed mint and freshly squeezed lemon juice. This drink is bursting with citrus flavor, light and delicious ! A perfect thirst quencher on a hot summer day.

Recipe Source :


  • 1 Cup watermelon roughly chopped ( I used seedless watermelon)
  • 1 fl.oz Bacardi rum ( I used classic superior white rum)
  • Club Soda
  • 4 to 5 mint leave
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • a pinch of salt
  • ice cubes


1. In a small bowl / mortar pestle add lemon juice and mint leaves and a pinch of salt and muddle together gently
2. In a food processor, add watermelon cubes and blend it until smooth puree
3. Pour the watermelon in serving glasses
4. Stir in lemon and mint. Add ice cubes. Add Rum and give it a stir. Add club soda and serve immediately


Saturday, 4 April 2015

Raisin Pound Cake

A moist and buttery pound cake with raisins. So soft and buttery that it melts in your mouth. Not overly sweet and perfect accompaniment to tea  / coffee.

Preparation Time : 30 Min
Baking time : 50 Min
Yield : one 6 inch Loaf
Recipe Source :


  • 1 Cup All purpose flour
  • 3/4 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • a big pinch of salt
  • 2/3 Cup Unsalted Butter
  • 1/2 Cup granulated white Sugar
  • 2 Eggs at room temperature
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Cup golden raisins ( toss 1 Tablespoon of all purpose flour to the raisins )

1. Preheat oven to 180 C, grease a 6 inch loaf pan and set aside
2. In a bowl, sieve all purpose flour, baking powder, salt together for 2 times and set aside
3. In a separate bowl beat butter with a hand mixer for a min. Then add sugar and cream butter and sugar for 2 more min
4. Add eggs one at a time and beat well until everything is mixed together. Now add vanilla extract and beat one more time
5. Adding dry ingredients to wet mixture in 3 additions. Beat until dry ingredients are evenly incorporated in wet mixture and there is no lump
6. Finally fold in raisins in the batter
7. Pour the batter in the greased loaf pan and bake at 180 C for 50 min
8. Start watching the cake after 45 min. Bake until the tooth pick inserted comes out clean.
9. Once done, remove from the oven and let it cool in the loaf pan for 10 minutes. Then cool the cake on a wire rack
10. Serve with coffee/ Tea


Friday, 3 April 2015

Goat Brain Stir Fry / Bheja Dry Masala

A simple, easy to make and delicious Goat brain masala / stir fry.


  • 2 Goat Brains cleaned and chopped roughly
  • 2 Tablespoon sesame seed oil / vegetable oil
  • 1/4 Teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 Sprig of curry leaves
  • 1 Medium sized red onion chopped finely
  • 1 Teaspoon ginger garlic paste
  • 1 Teaspoon whole black peppercorns ground coarsely
  • 1/2 Teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1/4 Teaspoon turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste
  • chopped cilantro leaves for garnish


1. Place goat brains in a pot and add 1 cup of hot water to the brain. Add a pinch of turmeric powder. Close the pot with a lid and let the brain remain in hot water for 5 minutes

2. After 5 minutes, remove them from hot water. Using a sharp knife, pull out all the visible blood vessels/ nerves and discard. It is important to remove veins. At this stage, brain will be semi cooked and soft
3. Chop brain roughly and set aside
4. In a pan, heat oil. When the oil is hot, add fennel seeds and fry for 10 seconds
5. Then add curry leaves and fry until they are crispy
6. Add onions and fry until onions are slightly caramelized
7. Add ginger garlic paste and fry on low flame until the raw smell goes
8. Then add red chilli powder, turmeric powder, salt to taste and give it a nice stir
9. Add chopped brain and very gently toss them in the onion masala
10. Finally sprinkle ground black pepper and toss again
11. Drain excess oil from the masala and garnish with chopped cilantro leaves
12. Serve hot

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Mashed potato, Paneer and Carrot Grilled cheese sandwich




  • 4 white sandwich bread slices
  • 2 Tablespoons of salted butter at room temperature
  • 1 Large Potato - boiled and mashed
  • 1/2 Cup grated Paneer / Cottage Cheese
  • 1 Carrot grated finely
  • 1 Green Chillies chopped finely
  • 1 Teaspoon red chilli flakes
  • 1 Teaspoon cilantro leaves chopped finely
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Cheese slices ( I used amul cheese)
  • Salt to taste
  • Directions

    1. Boil the potato with 1/4 Teaspoon salt until they are soft. I pressure cooked the potato for 4 whistles. Peel remove the skin and mash the potatoes
    2. Add mashed potatoes, grated paneer, grated carrots, green chillies, 1 teaspoon of cilantro leaves, red chilli flakes, salt and 1/2 Teaspoon freshly ground black pepper in a large bowl. Mix everything together using a spoon / hand

    3. Apply butter on both sides of the bread slices and set aside
    4. Top a bread slice with potato paneer mixture.

    5. Top the mixture with a cheese slice
    6. Close the sandwich with the second bread slice ( buttered both sides). Repeat steps 4, 5 and 6 for the second sandwich 
    7. Grill the sandwiches on the sandwich maker until they are crispy and golden
    8. Serve hot

    Wednesday, 1 April 2015

    Chettinad Uppu Kari

    Chettinad uppu kari is a mutton delicacy from Chettinad region of Tamil Nadu. Its a delicious, mildly spiced mutton masala prepared with shallots, garlic and dry red chillies. No added masala powders. This one is easy to prepare and one of the best preparation with mutton. A must try !

    Recipe Source :


    • 500 Grams mutton cut into small cubes
    • 3 Tablespoon sesame seed oil / vegetable oil
    • 1 Teaspoon fennel seeds
    • 2 Sprigs of curry leaf
    • 6 Garlic cloves crushed and then chopped finely
    • 1/2 Inch ginger piece chopped finely
    • 10 Dry red chillies cut into small pieces or broke in halves
    • 1 Cup finely chopped shallots
    • 1 Small tomato chopped finely
    • 1/4 Teaspoon turmeric powder
    • Salt to taste


    1. Wash mutton pieces and set aside
    2. In a pressure cooker, add sesame seed oil. When the oil is hot, add fennel seeds and fry for 10 seconds
    3. Then add curry leaves and fry until they are crispy
    4. Add chopped garlic and ginger and fry until garlic turns light golden
    5. Add shallots and fry until they are soft
    6. Add broken red chillies and fry for a minute
    7. Then add tomatoes and fry until tomatoes are mushy
    8. Add mutton pieces and sauté on high flame for 5 minutes. Once the mutton changes color and oil starts separating from the mixture, add turmeric powder and give it a stir


    9. Add 3/4 Cup of water , season with salt and mix everything
    10. Close the lid of the pressure cooker and pressure cook for 10 minutes on medium flame

    11. Once the pressure drops, open the pressure cooker and cook the mutton on high flame until all water evaporates and mutton masala is thick
    12. Switch off the flame and serve hot with steamed rice as a side