Monday, July 16, 2018

Nadan Beef Curry ~ Kerala Beef Curry

Jacob is not very picky about food. So it gets so easy to plan a meal. But if its Kappa, he just can't think of any other side but Beef curry. So if we have Kappa vevichathu at home, then its for sure we have Beef curry also. I am slowly starting to like that combo too; but my first preference would be Kappa and Meen curry. We are yet to find out, which combo is going to be Jordan's pick. For now, he will dig into both.

Cooking the beef in a pan rather than in the pressure cooker enhances its taste, as the beef pieces tend to get soaked up in the gravy as it cooks. However, pressure cooker is easy way to cook up the beef, but only when the curry sits for a while will the beef pieces soak up the gravy and enhance its taste. I usually go by the pressure cooker way to cook it up, because that's easy. The recipe remains the same whether you cook it in the pressure cooker or a pan. So, would you like to have some beef curry to go with your Kappa /Rice/ Chapathi/ Appam etc. then here is the recipe to the Nadan Beef curry.

  1. 1 lb of beef, cut into cubes and cleaned
  2. 1 1/2 cups of sliced red onion
  3. 2 chillies, slit
  4. 1 tbsp of finely chopped ginger
  5. 1 tbsp of finely chopped garlic
  6. 1/2 tsp of pepper powder
  7. 1/2 tbsp of red chilly powder
  8. 1 tbsp of coriander powder
  9. 1/4 tsp of turmeric powder
  10. 1/2 tsp of fennel seeds
  11. 2 star anise/thakolam
  12. 2 cinnamon sticks (1 inch pieces)
  13. 2 cloves
  14. 2 cardamom
  15. Salt to taste
  16. 1 sprig of curry leaves
  17. 3 tbsp of oil
  • In a grinder, grind the ingredients 4-10 into a fine paste by adding 2 tbsp of water.
  • In a pressure cooker, heat up the oil. Once hot, turn down the heat and add the ingredients 11-14. Roast it lightly untill a nice aroma starts coming. Add the onion, curry leaves and salt. Saute it till the onion turns tender. 
  • Now add in the ground masala. Cook it till the oil starts appearing or clearing up. Now add the beef pieces to it. Mix it well so that the beef pieces gets coated with the masala.
  • Cover and cook it for about 5 minutes while you stir it at times. 
  • Now the water from the beef would have been released. 
  • Cover the pressure cooker and put on the weight. Let it cook untill the beef gets cooked. For me it usually takes, 1 whistle on high heat followed by 3 whistle on low heat. However, the cooking time varies with the variety of beef.
  • Turn off the heat and let the pressure go down on its own. Open the lid and check if the beef is done and the gravy is enough. If not, add little water and let it come to a boil and cook for a minute or two. Switch off the heat.
  • Serve it with Bread, Chapathi, Roti, Puttu, Rice, Kappa, Appam, Parotta, etc.
  1. Do not over cook the beef, else they tend to fall apart. They should stay in perfect cube shapes that they are cut into.
  2. Do not add too much onion, else the beef curry would get a sweet taste.
  3. You could cook the beef curry covered in the pan itself. Just that they would take longer to get cooked. But cooking it covered, tastes better than being pressure cooked. Also the gravy penetrates into the beef pieces while cooking it covered. If pressure cooked, it takes time for the beef pieces to absorb the gravy. I usually tend to pressure cook it, for the ease of cooking.
  4. Do not add too much water into the beef curry. A thick gravy is what is desired, which comes out of the beef when it gets cooked. However, if you have a gravy demanding family then you may add in some water but don't overdo it.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Homemade Granola

Remember the homemade Yogurt that I had posted a week back. Well we use the same yogurt to top it on this homemade granola to make it our breakfast or tea time snack. They are super delicious and addictive. And what is wrong in getting addicted to such a super delicious, healthy and easy to make granola.

Dropping all the ingredients in a bowl and tossing it is all it takes from our end. Rest the oven takes care off, i.e. to make it crunchy. 

Monday, July 2, 2018

Cherry Galette

With summer comes cherries, one of our favorites to munch on. Not just raw, but it tastes great in the cooked form too. This cherry galette remains as just a fade memory, because it hardly survived 2 hours after it came out of the oven. As if it was a competition, each one of us just didn't stop untill the last crumb was wiped off. Ufff, they were delicious. 

If you happen to be in a region where you can get hold of fresh cherries, it is a must try. A warm piece of galette is just perfect for tea time snack. The crisp edges and the melt in the mouth cherries are a joy to have. You should try it to know what you are missing out on. It is just heaven !

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Kadai Bhindi Jalfrezi

Capsicum and okra are our favorite veggies. And when they come together in a single dish it sure gets a thumbs up. 

This kadahi bindi is one big hit at our place. It goes equally well with both rice and roti. Though my favorite combo is this stir fry paired with some tadka dal, roti and mango pickle. It is just yumm.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Lemon Poppyseed Cake

How many of you associate lemon with summer? For me, I have some wonderful memories associated with, being served with lemon juice during my summer vacations. Well, who can forget the chilled lemon juice served to the very thirsty and tired kids after having run and play in the sun. Somedays we were given the task to make it by ourselves. It was so funny to see the younger ones wait for the elder ones to make the lemon juice. We, the elder ones would be stirring it for some time to get the sugar dissolved and younger ones would get impatient while waiting for the juice with the empty glasses in hand :).

Well, this summer we wanted to bake something with lemon and we chose to bake this Lemon PoppySeed and I am so glad we chose it. And my kido did most part of it. He thoroughly enjoyed making and eating it as well. And when Big J got back from work, little J with great enthusiasm served it to him saying he made it :). We would be cooking together as one of the activities for this summer. And by the way, I must share it here. For moms of picky eater, engage them in the cooking process of the the food that they hate. In our case, it has really helped us in bringing about a liking towards food that he used to hate.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Ragi Poori

Before being a mother, I never had to hesitate or give a second thought of trying new recipes which were complicated and would make me spend the major part of my day in the kitchen. But with a toddler, I have become choosy. Something that is quick to make but new in taste and nutritious yet delicious, makes it to the table. Believe me, its more difficult to think what to make rather than actually making it.

My toddler is not that fussy eater (touchwood), but he would like varieties. I won't blame him because I too would get bored of rice/ chapathi everyday. So we tend to create new things for him whenever possible to bring in variety, to avoid any scenes of tantrum that he might create and leave me crazy.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Kerala Fish Fry

Fish fry is one of the best thing to go with rice and moru kachiyathu and a stir fry. The only thing I hate about it is the smell that keeps lingering in the whole house after its done, making our clothes and bags also smell of it. Otherwise it is just super addictive.

At any point of the day, I would choose to go for fish fry rather than fish curry and so would Jacob and Jordan . They are so easy to fall in love with. Its so hard to drag my kido home after school or after play in the park. But bribing him to have fish fry for lunch/dinner after we get back home, would instantly turn him into a sweetheart who would listen to his mama :D. It is just so addictive and yum to have it with some rice and moru kachiyathu. If you do have a stir fry also to go with it, it can turn into a feast.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Beef Burger

There is no better time for burgers. But long weekends, spent grilling and picnicing can never be done without burgers on the menu. With the long weekend coming up, everybody is excited as this one happened after quite a gap of 2 or 3 months. We haven't made a plan yet. Just been lazing around rather than breaking out brains planning on a trip. So we might end up grilling or do a picnic in a park, as a memorial day weekend special. 

Burgers seemed to me as a task, untill I tried it myself. I used to go the hard way of organizing picnics. Pick up the most difficult dish to make and work in the kitchen starting early morning to take it for picnics. And by the time I get to the picnic spot, all I would want is to lie down on the picnic blanket and doze off. That is no fun at all. So I have finally started to do things smart. The carnivores in us would be happy if I packed up some non-veg. So I usually pack sandwiches or burgers that are quick to put together and save all the energy to be burned out at the picnic spot rather than in the kitchen. And that has been working well so far with us.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Mango Kulfi - Instant and no cook version

Summer is no fun without Icecreams and Kulfis. And if the kulfis are flavored with some fresh mangoes then that makes the summer complete. Sourcing some good mangoes here is not easy. But we have succeeded in getting something nearest to the perfect ones. We have been lucky to have found out one such source and we have put it to good use in every way possible - Mango Shakes, Mango icecream, Mango Shrikhand , Mango Lassi etc. It feels good to have tried a little bit of this and that, that you have grown up enjoying in the Indian summer.

This Kulfi is one big hit. It being a no cook version makes it even more favorite to me. So easy to make and such a hit at home that we have been addicted to it. It was hard to say good bye to the mangoes last summer. Now that summer is back and so are the mangoes, I can't wait to try it again. Well, this post was drafted last summer and couldn't see its existence on the blog ever since. This time I thought to let it go free and get published without fail. So here you go. Kulfi making can never get so easy as this one.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Aam Ka Achar / Indian Mango Pickle in Mustard Oil

Mango pickle is something that we love pairing with chapathi - dal or poori-bhajji combinations. They are a pure bliss. Having spend half my life in north India, I had a special liking towards this pickle. Every time my parents would visit us, they would bring a jar of this pickle knowing that it is my favorite. But J would never understand what is so special about this pickle. He has a hate relationship with mustard oil. But having lived together for some years together and me going umm ahh over it whenever I eat :D, he started trying it and guess what I have to share the pickle with him too now .. he he. My kido too likes it. He, for some reason, calls pickle as Olli. I have no idea where he got that word from, but every time he sees me take out the pickle jar he will go on saying he wants it. 

We used to help mummy break open the mangoes, as a kid. It was a family affair if we were pickling this particular mango pickle. Right from sourcing the mangoes from our own mango tree to pickling, everyone in the family would be involved. My brother would pluck the mangoes. Washing and wiping it dry would be done by mummy and me. Breaking it open would be done by papa and mummy and we used to pull out the seeds and clean up. And pickling would be done by mummy. Everyone would then wait patiently for the pickle to be ready to eat. It tastes good if you pickle it with the hard cover of the seed on it. But you can always use just the flesh part of the mango to make it. I was lucky that the vendor did chop it out for me, which made the whole process such a breeze.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Potato and Bacon soup

The weather has been super confusing. Just one week back, we had great sunny days that we thought that the outdoor times are going to increase for us. But over this weekend it had again gone back to cloudy and gloomy days. And with such weather, some comforting soup is all what we crave for, while we stay indoors.

This potato soup has been a hit at home. My kido is a big potato fan. Infact, he says his favorite veggie is potato :). I would have been glad if he said that for atleast one of the green and leafy veggies. Well, this soup has been liked by him too that we try it every now and then. This loaded potato soup is heavy and would leave you full.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Smoothie Bowl

Smoothie bowl has been all over the internet for a while now. Usually its said, the things that look pretty are bad for health. But these smoothie bowls are pretty, healthy, easy and yummilicous (if at all that is a word.) My kid hates fruits. And you would see me mentioning that quite often in posts that include fruits. It really bothers me. I don't know why, but I really wouldn't have bothered if he likes atleast one fruit. Anyways, so this time again, the smoothie bowl was tried, to make my fruit hater take in some fruits, while I have some nuts garnished over the smoothie to bribe him.

This is one awesome breakfast or after school snack option if you are running out of time or too exhausted to make something to feed yourself and your family. So filling, so colourful and healthy that anyone would wipe the bowl clean without cribbing even a bit. I have used papaya smoothie here. But you could use any smoothie and toppings of your choice.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Tuna Thoran

I have been meaning to try this recipe for a long time. I had got the canned tuna and had been sitting in my store for so long. But since the expiry of these canned tuna is long I kept on procrastinating. Every time I procrastinate, it makes me think of one of our professors back in college. Every time someone would delay in submission of assignments or projects he would be like "What were you doing? Sitting on it and hatching eggs?" :P It used to be so hilarious but that atmosphere wouldn't be the right one to just laugh our lungs out right, because the professor might have been actually scolding someone. Anyways, this recipe has been pending for so long that I finally thought of trying it. And guess what, I always have canned tuna fish handy these days, in case I might want some non-veg side to prepare in just matter of minutes.

This recipe is from Nisha's blog. The very look of the picture on her blog made me tempt and wanted to try it. It is a slightly tweaked version of how my family likes it. Trust me you got to try it to enjoy what you have been missing.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Chowari Payasam / Sabudana Kheer / Tapioca Pearl Pudding

It may be known by different names that may make it sound like too complicated or sophisticated, but it is just a very basic payasam or kheer that you can put together in a matter of time. With Vishu around the corner, I thought what best can be served to my blog baby than a yummy payasam. 

Not just for sadyas, it can make a super yummy tea time/after school snack for kids as well as adults too. With just minimal ingredients and most importantly with least efforts...when you can make such a yummy payasam, then why think twice. Just go ahead and make it.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Butternut Squash Erissery

The one thing I am thankful for is that my family is not very particular of having just the Indian veggies for our meals. We do cook any other veggie available, the Indian way and love them. Butternut squash is just one of them. When made erissery out of them, they are just perfect to even serve it for sadya. Since Vishu is almost around the corner, I thought I should be publishing this post for you guys to try for Vishu Sadya.

If you happen to be living in a place where butternut squash is available everywhere, but pumpkins are rarely seen, other than during thanksgiving, then this is one thing you should try, to relish on something similar to what your taste buds have been used to. Here's how to make it.

Blogging tips