Monday, November 30, 2020



Dosas are an integral part of our South Indian cuisine! They are served for breakfast in many homes in South India, and increasingly are becoming popular all over the country. Many friends, both here and abroad, not familiar with our cuisine have been astonished at the wide variety of dosas that we make! 

In this blog, for example, you will find recipes for different types of dosas such as:-

They differ in terms of the ingredients that go into making them and the process for making them. Usually we make dosas by soaking the ingredients, grinding them to form a batter then leaving the batter to ferment.   

However, there are some types of dosas for which fermentation of the batter is not required. You need less time to make them and they come in handy quite often when you are hard pressed for time. 

Today's recipe is for a dosa which does not need fermentation of the batter. It is made using cooked rice, rice flour and wheat flour. We also add semolina to give the dosas a good texture. In this recipe, we can make best use of the left over cooked rice. I have adapted this from Instant Dosa With Leftover Rice from Chitra's Foodbook. 

I tried this out the other day and it came out very well.

If you try this out and like the recipe, please do leave a comment in the blog. Thank you! 


  • Cooked Rice, 1 cup
  • Rice Flour, 1 cup
  • Wheat Flour, 1/4 cup 
  • Curds, 1/4 cup
  • Semolina/ Rava, 2 tbsp
  • Salt, to taste
  • Cooking Soda, 1/4 tsp
  • Oil, as required for making dosas

Grind together the cooked rice, rice flour, wheat flour, and curds, in a mixer, to a smooth paste adding the required amount of water. ( This batter should be of the consistency of the regular dosa batter)  
Transfer the ground batter to a vessel 
To this add the semolina, salt to taste and cooking soda
Mix well and set aside for 5-10 minutes 
Check the consistency and add very little water if required
Heat a tawa and when it is sufficiently hot add a ladleful of batter and spread it to form the dosa
Drizzle a little oil on and around the dosa 
Cook covered on medium heat till one side of the dosa gets done
Flip and cook the other side likewise
Serve hot Instant Dosa with a chutney of your choice

Thursday, November 26, 2020



In the Udupi- Mangaluru area of my Home State of Karnataka, "Menaskais "( also called Gojjus)  are spicy- sweet gravies made of different types of vegetables, and some fruits. They are served as an accompaniment to hot steamed rice. Today's is made with capsicum/bell peppers. 

Capsicums are strong in Vitamin C and have other health benefits as well. Elsewhere in this blog, you will find other recipes made with capsicum, such as :-

I have adapted this recipe from Udupi style Capsicum Gravy/Menaskai in the popular website: Veg Recipes of Karnataka. 

We loved this and I'm sure if you try it out, you will love it too! 


  • Capsicum, 3
  • Tamarind, a lemon sized ball 
  • Turmeric Powder, 1/8 tsp
  • Jaggery, grated, 1 and 1/2 tbsp 
  • Oil,  1 tsp + 1 tsp for roasting ingredients for grinding 
  • Salt, as per taste
Grind To A Smooth Paste : -
  • Sesame Seeds, 1 tbsp
  • Coriander Seeds, 1 tsp
  • Byadgi Red Chillies, 5
  • Fenugreek/Methi Seeds, 1/4 tsp
  • Coconut Gratings, 1 cup
For Seasoning:--
  • Mustard Seed, 1/2 tsp
  • Chana Dal, 1/2 tsp
  • Urad Dal, 1/2 tsp
  • Red Chilli, 1, broken into halves
  • Curry Leaves, a few 
  • Oil, 2 tsp 

Wash the capsicum, remove the core and de-seed. Chop the capsicum and keep aside
Soak the tamarind in 1/2 cup of warm water for about 10-15 minutes. Extract the juice and discard the pulp of the tamarind
In a thick-bottomed kadhai dry roast the sesame seeds till they pop. Keep aside
Next add 1 tsp of oil and on medium heat add and roast the coriander seeds and methi seeds till they change colour. Keep aside
Now roast the red chillies and keep aside
In a mixer jar, grind together the coconut gratings, roasted red chillies, coriander seeds, methi seeds and sesame seeds to a smooth paste adding the required amount of water
Heat 1 tsp of oil in the same kadhai, and add the chopped capsicum and sauté for one minute
To this add the turmeric powder, tamarind juice and grated jaggery and mix well 
Cover and cook on medium flame till the capsicum gets done (Please ensure the capsicum remains firm and does not get overcooked )
Now add the ground paste prepared earlier, salt to taste and mix well
Add water if required to get a thick gravy-like consistency and bring to a boil
Lower the flame and allow it to simmer for a couple of minutes
Heat 2 tsp of oil in a small pan and on medium heat add the mustard seeds, and when they splutter add the Chana Dal and Urad Dal and sauté till the dal change colour
Next add the broken red chilli and curry leaves and sauté for a few seconds
Pour this seasoning on to the Capsicum Menaskai
Switch off the gas and transfer the Capsicum Menaskai to a serving bowl 

Sunday, November 22, 2020



In my mother tongue, Konkani,  Whole Black Pigeon Peas are called "Kali Thori." A " Bhendi" in our cuisine is a spicy coconut-based side dish made with either vegetables or legumes with a distinctive seasoning of garlic. 

Kali Thori Bhendi is served as an accompaniment to hot steamed rice. 

 Today, I have made this dish using just Kali Thori but you can also make it with Mangalore Cucumber ( Magge) or Jackfruit Seeds (Bikkand) as well. 


  • Kali Thori ( Whole Black Pigeon Peas) , 1 cup
  • Coconut Gratings, 1 cup
  • Roasted Byadgi Red Chillies, 7- 8 or to taste
  • Tamarind, a small marble-sized ball
  • Raw Rice, 1 tsp
  • Garlic Cloves, 10-12 
  • Salt, to taste 
  • Oil, for seasoning, 1 tbsp

Wash the kali thori and soak it in with adequate water for 8 hours or overnight
Next morning, discard the water and add required amount of fresh water to pressure cook the kali thori for 2-3 whistles or till the it gets done
Once the cooker cools, remove the cooked kali thori and keep aside
(The residual stock from this process can be used to make Saaru later )
In a blender, grind together the coconut gratings, roasted red chillies, tamarind, and raw rice to a smooth paste adding the required amount of water
Lightly crush the garlic cloves ( as seasoning garlic cloves without lightly crushing them makes them spurt) and keep aside
Add the ground paste to the cooked thori, add salt to taste, mix well and adjust the consistency by adding water as required and bring to a boil
Let it simmer for about 5 minutes then switch off the gas
Heat oil in a small pan and when it gets hot add the lightly crushed garlic cloves and fry till they become golden brown and give off a good aroma
Pour this garlic seasoning on to the Kali Thori Bhendi

Wednesday, November 18, 2020



With idli and dosa being perennial favorites in South Indian homes, there is always the need to have freshly made chutney and or chutney powder as accompaniments for them. 

There are many methods of making chutney powder at home. The ingredients vary from recipe to recipe.  Today's recipe is for an easy-to-make Chutney Powder using Urad Dal and Chana Dal. I normally use the less spiced Byadgi Red Chillies in all my cooking. I mention this because the number of red chillies we use for this Chutney Powder will depend on the type of chillies used, apart from your taste, of course. 

This Chutney Powder goes great with both idlis and dosas..

Please do try it out and I am sure you will like it as much as we do. 


  • Urad Dal ( Black Gram Dal) , 3/4 cup
  • Chana Dal ( Bengal Gram), 1/4 cup
  • Byadgi Red Chillies, 12
  • White Sesame Seeds , (Til) 2 tbsp
  • Hing ( Asafoetida), pea-sized ball or Hing Powder, 1/4 tsp
  • Salt, to taste
  • Oil, 1 tsp

 In a thick bottomed kadhai, heat 1 tsp of oil and on medium heat add the asafoetida and sauté till it becomes fragrant. Keep aside
In the same kadhai, roast the Byadgi Red Chillies till they become crisp. Keep aside.
Next roast the white sesame seeds till they change colour. Keep aside. 
Now roast the Urad Dal and Chana Dal separately till they turn slightly golden
Allow the roasted ingredients to cool
In a mixer jar, grind together the roasted red chillies, asafoetida, white sesame seeds and the roasted dals along with salt to taste to a coarse powder
Once the Chutney Powder cools completely transfer it to an airtight jar/container
Serve with idl-dosa with a dash of ghee or oil of your choice. I usually serve this with coconut oil.

Friday, November 13, 2020



It is customary in our Indian homes to make some sweets for festivals and with Diwali coming up, everyone is busy preparing sweets and savories for the family. For the health conscious and for those who are advised to avoid or reduce their intake of sugar, Dates & Dry Fruits Ladoos is a welcome option that I would recommend. This is because unlike most traditional Indian sweets, this does not call for the use of  sugar or even jaggery as dates have their natural sweetness. 

Dates are supposed to be very good for health . They are nutritious and high in fibre apart from having several antioxidants. Likewise, dry fruits too are rich in proteins, minerals and fibre, so this combination of ingredients makes for a tasty as well as healthy sweet! Readers outside India would probably use the generic term " nuts" for what we call " dry fruits"! 

There are many ways one can make Dates & Dry Fruit Ladoos. I have used this method which is quite easy and does not call for too much effort. 

If you are using seedless dates, they can be used as such but dates with seeds need to be de-seeded. You can use a variety of dry fruits. Today I have used almonds, cashews, pistachios, walnuts and raisins. 

Please note that we should make the ladoos when the dates and dry fruits mixture is cool enough to handle, without allowing it to cool completely. 

While signing off, here's wishing you and your family a Very Happy Diwali. Enjoy, but stay safe!! 


  • Seedless Dates, (Khajur) 2 cups 
  • Ghee, 1 and 1/2 tbsp
  • Almonds, (Badam), chopped, 1/2 cup
  • Cashewnuts, (Kaju), chopped, 3 tbsp 
  • Pistachios, (Pista), chopped, 3 tbsp
  • Walnuts, (Akhrot), chopped, 3 tbsp 
  • Raisins, ( Kishmish), 2 tbsp
  • Poppy Seeds, (Khus Khus), 2 tsp
  • Cardamom (Elaichi ) Powder, 1/2 tsp


Keep the dates in a microwaveable dish and microwave on high for about 30 seconds
( This will soften the dates)
Allow it to cool and transfer the dates to a mixer jar 
Grind  the dates to a coarse paste without adding any water. Keep aside
In a thick bottomed kadhai, heat the ghee and lightly fry the almonds, cashew nuts, pistachios and walnuts till they get roasted and give off a fragrance 
Next add the raisins and poppy seeds and roast for 1-2 minutes 
To this add the dates paste prepared earlier and stir continuously till the dates and nuts get well blended
Switch off the gas, add the cardamom powder and mix once again
Transfer the content to a plate and allow it to cool for a few minutes
When it is cool enough to handle, apply a little ghee to your palms and lightly knead the dates and dry fruits mixture 
Using your palms and fingers, shape the dates and dry fruits mixture into ladoos 
Store in airtight container 

Monday, November 9, 2020



Ridge gourd is called Ghosale in my mother tongue, Konkani. It is called Turai in Hindi and Heerekayi  in Kannada. We use ridge gourd at home from time to time as it has various properties that make it good for health. 

Elsewhere in this blog you will find recipes for other dishes made with ridge gourd such as:-
Today's recipe is from our Konkani cuisine and is for a curry we call Ghosale Ambat. In this we use tender ridge gourd to make a mildly spiced curry that is served with hot rice. 

By the way, we also make full use of the ridge gourd by making a chutney with the ridge gourd peel. Please see the link given above. 

While you can use any cooking oil, we have traditionally used coconut oil for this seasoning which enhances the taste of the ambat. 

  • Ghosale ( Ridge Gourds) , 2 or about 250 gms
  • Thuvar Dal, (Split Pigeon Peas), 1/2 cup
  • Turmeric Powder, 1/4 tsp
  • Fresh Coconut Gratings, 1 cup
  • Roasted Byadgi Red Chillies, 5
  • Tamarind, size of a small marble 
  • Raw Rice, 1 tsp
  • Large-sized Onion, 1
  • Salt, to taste
  • Coconut Oil, 2 tbsp

Wash and peel the ridge gourd and cut them into 1/2 inch sized roundels
Finely chop the onion and keep aside
Wash and cook the thuvar dal in adequate water in a pressure cooker for 2-3 whistles or till it is done
Once the cooker cools remove and mash the cooked dal. Keep aside 
In a mixer jar, grind together the coconut gratings, roasted red chillies, tamarind and raw rice to make a smooth paste adding the required amount of water 
In a vessel, cook the ridge gourd roundels adding water as required along with a little salt and turmeric powder. Please take care that it doesn't get over cooked as ridge gourd gets cooked very fast
When it is nearly cooked, add the cooked and mashed dal and the ground paste
Mix well and bring to a boil
Add water as required to get a thick curry-like consistency. Check for salt and add if required
Lower the flame and let it simmer for 4-5 minutes stirring from time to time
Heat coconut oil in a small pan, and fry the chopped onion till it turns golden brown
Add this seasoning to the Ghosale Ambat
Serve as an accompaniment with hot steamed rice 

# Tip : adding 1 tsp of raw rice while grinding the paste improves the texture of the Ambat 

Wednesday, November 4, 2020



Lady's fingers/okra are called Bhindi in Hindi, Bhenda in my mother tongue, Konkani and Bendekayi in Kannada. Did you know that lady's fingers has a component called pectin which helps to reduce the "bad" cholesterol in our system? It has a number of other health benefits as well.

This has to be one of the more common vegetables in the Indian kitchen! I make use of lady's fingers quite often so elsewhere in this blog you will find other recipes for bhindi such as:-

Today's recipe is an easy to make side dish called Bhindi Kali Mirch which can be made quite fast. It gets its name from the black pepper ( Kali Mirch in Hindi) powder which gives this dish a distinctive taste. One of the reasons this can be made in a jiffy is that lady's fingers is one vegetable that gets cooked in no time! 

I have adapted this from Bhindi Kali Mirch by the legendary cookery expert Tarlaji Dalal. 

I tried this out the other day and it was most yummy!!


  • Bhindi ( Lady's Fingers, Okra), 250 gms
  • Large -sized Onion, 1
  • Green Chillies, slit, 2
  •  Roasted Cumin Seeds Powder, 1/2 tsp
  • Chilli Powder, 1/2 tsp
  • Freshly ground Black Pepper Powder, 1/4 tsp
  • Oil, 2 tbsp
  • Salt, to taste

Wash the lady's fingers and pat them dry using a clean kitchen towel
Snip off both ends and cut into 2" pieces
Slice the onion into thin slices
Heat oil in a thick-bottomed kadhai and on medium heat add the onion and sauté for a couple of minutes
To this add the slit green chillies and sauté for a few seconds
Next add the cut lady's fingers and salt to taste
Mix well and cook until the lady's fingers get done stirring from time to time
Please take care that the lady's fingers get overcooked to become mushy
Now add the roasted cumin seeds powder, chilli powder, and freshly ground black pepper powder and mix well
Cook for a few minutes until the lady's fingers is well blended with the spice powders
Switch off the gas and transfer the Bhindi Kali Mirch to a serving bowl
Serve hot as a side dish with rice or rotis