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Black Currant cake with Idly pot

Cakes are not that difficult to make as you think. I said so because I never tried it for a while. The main reasons that I never tried cakes were, I do not have an electric oven or OTG and also an electric beater. Trust me, you can make yummy cakes even without an electric oven or an electric beater.

To tell the truth, those machines really save us a lot of effort and time. But not having those machines is not a fair reason saying ‘NO’ to baking! In this recipe, I have used my electric beater which I purchased recently. It is really easier and time efficient to prepare toppings and also to beat eggs.

The better is to try cakes even without those machines and later you can buy as you develop the baking skills!

Let’s jump to the recipe now!

Steamed black currant cake with Idly pot. Easy to make cake with an idli pot or any steamer. You can also use a microwave or OTG and bake for 10 to 12 minutes at 180 degree celsius (settings might change depending on the machine).

The topping that I used is a simple one prepared with condensed milk, black currant crush, and cream cheese. You can just use the black currant crush and it tastes good.

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Black currant cake recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 No Eggs
  • 1/2 Cup Milk
  • 1/4 Cup Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Black Currant Crush
  • 1 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 tsp Baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/4 Cup Powdered Sugar

Instructions

  • Beat the eggs with an electric blender or hand mixer.
  • Add the milk to the beaten eggs.
  • Now add oil. You can also use butter at room temperature for a better taste.
  • Add the black currant crush.
  • Just powder the sugar in a mixer jar and add to the mixture
  • Mix them all.
  • Now add the flour.
  • And mix well.
  • Add salt.
  • Then Baking powder.
  • and Baking soda. Mix them well and the batter is ready.
  • Grease a baking tray and pour the batter. Gently tap twice to release air bubbles.
  • Pre-heat an idly pot or steamer with about 2 cups of water.
  • Now steam the cake for 30 minutes or until it's baked.
  • Once done, allow it to cool down. Gently flip over a plate and the spongy cake is ready.
  • You can have it as such or add toppings of your choice.
  • Yummy, spongy black currant cake is ready!

Video

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Featured

Anti-inflammatory Chutney

We have been hearing about healthy diet for a while! I’m sure, we have made a lot of changes in our eating habits too. Right from the selection of ingredients to the cooking utensil used, we are careful in every selection. But how about just making our daily food an anti-inflammatory one, without giving up the taste?

Try this anti-inflammatory chutney made with ginger & tomato. Trust me, it goes well idly, dosa, chapati or roti and even with pooris! The easiest part is you can make it with in 10 to 15 minutes!

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Anti-inflammatory Chutney Recipe

Anti-inflammatory chutney made with tomato & ginger.
Course Breakfast, dinner, easy cooking, Side Dish
Cuisine asian, Indian, south indian
Keyword chutney, ginger chutney, tomato chutney
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 7 minutes
Servings 6 Person

Equipment

  • Mixer-Grinder

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 1/4 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Urad Dal
  • few Curry leaves
  • 7 to 8 no Red Chilli
  • 5 no Onion
  • 6 to 7 no Tomato
  • 2 Strips Coconut
  • 1.5 Inch Ginger

Instructions

  • Heat oil And splutter the mustard seeds. Then add curry leaves, red chillies & urad dal. Saute till the dal turns to light brown color.
  • Now add the chopped onion and saute till it changes translucent.
  • Drop the chopped tomatoes and saute till it turns soft. Add required salt.
  • Once sauted, allow it to cool.
  • Meanwhile, chop the coconut into small pieces.
  • Also, chop the ginger into small pieces.
  • Add the ginger & coconut into the mixer jar and grind without adding water.
  • Now add the cooled mixture and grind coarsely.
  • Tangy Chutney is ready!

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Featured

Schools online, No tiffin box but Banana box!

With classes started, children tend to take biscuits and snacks for their breakfast. Here is an interesting yet simple recipe made with red banana, that’s really delicious!

The easiest part is, you can prepare the batter and store it in refrigerator for 2 to 3 days. So just make your yummy breakfast everyday with in few minutes.

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Breakfast Banana box / Quick & nutritional breakfast recipe

Breakfast recipe with banana.
Course Breakfast, Brunch, Dessert, dinner, Snack
Cuisine asian, Indian
Keyword banana breakfast, breakfast recipe, breakfast recipe with banana, dinner recipe with banana, easy breakfast with banana, healthy breakfast recipe, nutritional breakfast with banana, recipe with banana, recipe with banana for breakfast, simple breakfast with banana, snack with banana
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Servings 3 Persons

Equipment

  • Mixer-Grinder
  • Pan (preferably iron)

Instructions

  • Add coconut pieces into a Mixer jar.
  • Grind for few pulses without adding any water.
  • Add wheat flour & egg to the coconut.
  • Add salt and required jaggery.
  • Also add baking powder and some cardamom powder for flavor.
  • Cut the ripen red banana into small slices.
  • Pour the batter over a dosa tawa.
  • Cook on both sides. Place some banana pieces, some cashew nuts and a tsp of grated coconut.
  • Fold it on all four sides like a box.
  • Apply ghee and toast on both sides.

Video

Notes

Juicy and tasty!
Crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside.
Featured

Chinese Cuisine Indian taste

Let’s make a different egg fried rice with a never before chicken gravy! I bet you would love the taste. Yes, we are making a delicious Chinese Fried rice with absolute Indian taste. Also, a perfect chicken gravy with Indian spices but it goes well with the Chinese fried rice.

All the products used here are in our SHOP page.

Egg Fried rice Recipe

Local streets of India serve one of a kind Fried rices that are often better in taste than the ones served in star hotels. Why not we cook the same here? With no delay, let’s get started.

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Fried Rice Recipe – Indian & Chinese

Let's cook a simple Chinese fried rice with Indian masala & taste!
Course buffet, dinner, Festive, Lunch, occasional, Party, Weekend
Cuisine Chinese, Fusion Food, Indian, Indo Chinese
Keyword Egg fried rice recipe, Fried rice recipe, local fried rice recipe, street style egg fried rice recipe
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 4

Equipment

  • Chinese wok

Ingredients

  • 1/2 Kg Basmati rice
  • 1 whole Garlic
  • 200 gm Carrot
  • 200 gm Beans
  • 6 number Egg
  • 6 Tbl sp Oil
  • 1 Sachet Maggi Masala
  • 1 tsp Chicken masala
  • 1/2 tsp Pepper powder

Instructions

  • Cook basmati rice with salt & water. Toss with 3 table spoon oil & just keep aside. Heat oil in a Chinese wok and add the chopped garlic.
  • Then add the chopped carrot & beans.
  • Once carrot & beans are half cooked add the sliced cabbage. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Now, add a sachet of maggi masala. It gives Indian taste & flavor to the fried rice.
  • Also, add a tsp of chicken masala for a desi taste fried rice.
  • Beat 6 eggs with salt.
  • Pour the beaten eggs over the vegetables and let it remain as such for 30 seconds.
  • Then start stirring.
  • Finally, add the cooked rice and pepper powder. Also, add salt if required.

Notes

Please follow the below notes for a perfect Fried Rice recipe: 
  1. The basmati rice shouldn’t be over cooked. If so, fried rice would turn sticky. I prefer Unity Basmati rice as its super non-sticky.
  2. Chicken masala should be sauted well to avoid raw flavor. Maggi Fried rice masala results in restaurant style rice.
  3. Vegetables needn’t be full cooked to remain its crunchiness. 
  4. For better tossed fried rice use a Chinese wok.

Our yummy Chinese fried rice from Indian kitchen is ready now. Let’s make a different chicken gravy to serve with the rice.

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Different Gravy for Frid rice

A must try Indian touch flavored gravy for fried rice.
Course buffet, dinner, Lunch, occasional, Party, Weekend
Cuisine Chinese, Indian
Keyword Chicken gravy, Chicken gravy for fried rice, Different gravy for fried rice, Gravy
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 4

Equipment

  • Iron Pan or kadai

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp Oil
  • 3 Number Onion Sliced
  • 1 Number Tomato Chopped roughly
  • 2 Number Green chilli Chopped roughly
  • 2 tsp Chilli powder used in chicken marination
  • 1 tsp Cumin powder used in chicken marination
  • 1/2 tsp Saunf powder used in chicken marination
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder used in chicken marination
  • 1 tsp Ginger-Garlic paste used in chicken marination
  • 2 tsp Soya Sauce
  • 2 tsp Corn Flour

Instructions

  • Heat 3 tbsp oil in an Iron pan.
  • Saute sliced onion and add some salt.
  • Saute tomato & green chillies.
  • Add the marinated chicken. (Chicken has to be marinated with chili powder, cumin powder, saunf powder, turmeric powder, ginger-garlic paste & salt for 30 minutes). Add some water & cook well.
  • Mic 2 tsp of corn flour with 1/2 cup water.
  • Pour the mixture into the cooked chicken gravy.
  • Also add 2 tsp of soya sauce.
  • Let it boil for a while & the gravy for fried rice is ready!

Notes

Follow the below notes for a perfect gravy:
  1. Marinate the chicken with the mentioned masalas for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Cook the chicken well before adding the corn water mixture.
  3. Adjust the consistency by adding water (after adding the corn flour mixture).
  4. Serve hot otherwise the gravy thickens due to the corn starch in it. 
Featured

Useful Iron utensils for everyday cooking

Iron is a metal which not only symbolises strength but it can also give us strength to live a disease-free life! We, as a part of modern living, started to use aluminium, non-stick, plastic utensils which do harm us directly or indirectly. Why not we pick the right utensils for our day-to-day cooking, so that we live a much healthier life?

Note: All the products in this article are available in our SHOP page.

Come on, let’s together make a change to bring a real change on our society!

This a beginner’s guide to start cooking with iron utensils that are basic for any kitchen. If you have already started using iron vessels, then I must say that you have already started a healthy lifestyle!

List of Top Ten Iron utensils for an Indian kitchens

1. Iron Dosa pan

Dosa is one of the common foods of South Indian kitchens and we can prepare a variety of dosas such with rice flour, ragi, wheat, rava dosa, onion dosa, etc. A single dosa pan can help you prepare breakfast and dinner for your entire family almost every day! so do invest such an useful iron dosa pan as it gives you paper-roast dosa with the goodness of iron. Buy dosa tawa or dosa pan here.

Dosa tawa buying guide:

– Choose a size which suits your need.

If you want Crispy dosas, get an iron dosa tawa

Dosa tawa of larger sizes (12 inches in diameter) require bigger burner to spread out heat uniformly. If you use a gas stove with smaller flame, go for a smaller size dosa pan.

– Weight of dosa tawa

Generally, more the weight of the dosa tawa is the more non-sticky the dosas are! So, don’t go for a light weight ones as they may result in burnt & stuck dosas.

Big size dosa tawa

– Pre- seasoned dosa tawa

If you are new kid on the block to seasoning iron utensils, better go for pre-seasoned dosa pans. It may cost you a litter more, but it saves a lot of your time and energy. If you are a beginner, you can watch the complete Iron utensils step-by-step seasoning guide here.

2. Iron kadai of various sizes

Iron kadai or iron pan (as it’s popularly called) is a must in South Indian kitchens. It serves a lot of purpose in Indian kitchens, such as tempering, sautéing, deep frying, side dish (subzi) preparations, etc.

Buy 10 inch Iron kadai here.

Buy 14 inch Iron kadai here.

Iron pan

The choice of its sizes depends mainly on the quantity you cook with the iron pan. A small of family of 4 to 6 members can go for a pan of 8 inches in diameter whereas a larger family of 8 to 10 members can get an iron kadai of size 12 inches or bigger. Cast iron kadai is an excellent choice when it comes to health benefits but it weighs more than an iron kadai. If you wish to know more about Cast iron utensils, watch here.

3. Iron Ape pan (paniyaram maker)

Paniyaram or ape is a traditional south Indian food, that can be prepared as sweetish or saltish with spices! The crispy outer layer with a spongy inner makes it an amazing breakfast.

Buy pre-seasoned Paniyaram or Ape pan here.

Ape pan

Paniyaram maker is a circular(or square-shaped sometimes) pan with semi-spherical structures of various sizes & counts. A typical ape pan has 8 to 12 such holes that can make paniyarams of lemon size each.

Again, it’s very difficult to season an iron ape pan. You can better go for a pre-seasoned paniyaram pan made of iron or watch here to know How to season a paniyaram pan.

4. Iron Roti press

It is my favourite as it helps in making rotis, puris, phulkas, chapattis, boli or poli, etc very quickly and without leaving a mess. Many complain that rotis made with Roti maker are not soft and are thick than the ones prepared with a roller. This is absolutely wrong as simple tricks when used can result in super soft rotis! If you are interested in making soft rotis with Roti maker, just watch here that guides you right from dough preparation.

Iron Roti press with stainless steel inner surface

Buy Iron Roti press here.

5. Iron Aapam kadai

It is just an iron kadai with either shallow or deeper bottom. It’s bottom is usually thicker to avoid sticking or catching at the bottom. Few people prefer shallow aapams and others prefer deeper circular aapams. Iron aapam pans always make crispy outer & soft cantered aapams.

Buy pre-seasoned cast iron Aapam pan here.

6. Iron Sauté pan or Tadka pan(for omelettes & tempering)

It is a small sized iron pan that usually comes with a long handle for easier lifting. It’s comparatively lesser in weight as it’s smaller in size. It’s saves our time and heat energy as well. The all-round fluffy omelettes made with iron sauté pan are worthy tasting!

Buy pre-seasoned iron Tadka pan here

Sauté pan to make karandi omelette

7. Light weight Iron pan (for Chinese foods)

Almost all Chinese food serving restaurants would have these light weight iron pans, also called as Chinese wok. It comes with a long handle to toss fried rice, noodles or other Chinese food varieties.

Buy Chinese wok or Kadai here.

Stir fry with a Chinese wok

You must be careful while using such pans at home as they easily catch at the bottom. These are best suited for hotels and if you intend to use it at your home, then use it on a low to medium flame.

8. Grill pan (for Tandoor foods)

Such grill pans are innovation done in the modern iron utensils. They are heavy to lift, comes with grills on it and can be see just as a pan. Iron grill pans avoids catching at the bottom and you can prepare smoky grill chicken or grilled vegetables just at home!

Buy Grill pan here

Make smoky grilled food at home

9. Dutch oven (as hot packs)

Dutch ovens are rarely used utensils in Indian kitchens yet they have much more usability than you think! Of course, iron Dutch ovens are heavy to lift but they retain the hotness & freshness of food for a longer time. It is for this reason they are used as hot packs too!

Buy cast iron Dutch oven here.

Heavy Dutch ovens made from Iron

As with other bulky iron utensils, Dutch ovens consume more fuel (LPG) while cooking. But when you compromise on such things, the more healthier & tastier your food is!

10. Flat Jalebi pan (for shallow frying)

When I first bought flat jalebi pan, I had no idea of using it for my day-to-day cooking. Later, it turned to be an essential item in my kitchen with its uses ranging from shallow frying, toasting fish, chicken, vegetables, etc. You can also stir fry vegetables, if you intend to use lesser oil in your food. Pav bhaji is another exotic food that I used to make with this flat jalebi kadai. You can watch here to know How I made Pav Bhaji easily?.

Flat base, induction cook top friendly

Buy Flat Jalebi pan here.

It’s light weight yet rarely catches at the bottom. The flat base sits perfectly on induction cook top as well. Never miss out such an useful product in your kitchen! If you are still confused of its uses, just watch here to know How am I using it?

Featured

Traditional Pongal recipe with Red Rice

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Traditional Red Rice Pongal

Mapillai Samba rice is known for various benefits such as diabetic-friendly diet-friendly, gluten-free, etc.
Let’s make a healthy traditional Pongal recipe with this red rice.
Course Breakfast, dinner, occasional
Cuisine asian, Indian, south indian
Keyword Lets cook like experts, lets cook up, mapillai samba rice pongal recipe, pongal recipe that no one knows, red rice pongal recipe, traditional pongal recipe
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 6

Equipment

  • pressure cooker
  • Spatula
  • Mixing bowl

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Mapillai samba rice (red rice)
  • 1/2 cup Moong dal
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 2 tsp Ghee
  • 1/2 tsp Jeera
  • 1/2 tsp Black pepper
  • Few Curry leaves
  • 1 inch Ginger
  • 2 no Green Chilli
  • 10 no Cashew nuts

Instructions

  • 1. Wash & Soak the red rice in water for 15 minutes.
  • 2. Pressure the cook the rice for 3 whistles, by adding 5 cups water and salt.
  • Wash and add moong dal to the pressure cooker. Also, add 2 more cups water into it and again pressure cook for 2 more whistles.
  • Once cooked, mix and smash the rice & dal.
  • Heat 2 tsp ghee in a kadai.
  • Add Jeera, pepper, curry leaves, chopped ginger, green chilli and cashew nuts. Sauté well and add to the cooked Pongal.
  • Serve with Chutney and Sambar.

Video

Notes

1. Soak rice for 15 minutes.
2. Add 5 cups water for one cup rice & pressure cook for 4 whistles.
3. wash moong dal and add to the cooked rice. Also add 2 cups water for the dal to cook.
4. Cook for 3 more whistles for the dal to cook.
5. Once cooked, mix and smash the rice-dal mixture by adding salt. 
6.  Heat ghee in a kadai. Sauté jeera, black pepper, chopped ginger, green chilli, curry leaves and cashew nuts.
7. Add to the Pongal and mix well.
8.  Serve with chutney & sambar.

Featured

Kozhukattai with Roti Maker | கொழுக்கட்டை ஈஸியா எப்படி செய்யலாம்?

Kozhukattai (a South Indian Sweet stuffed with Coconut, Jaggery & Moong dal)

Kozhukattai with Roti Maker is one of the easiest and quickest ways to prepare delicious sweets. Of course, there are varieties in kozhukattais such as Pooranam kozhukattai, Pidi Kozhukattai, Pal Kozhukattai, etc. In the Pooraam Kozhukattai, the side stuffing i.e.,the Pooranam can be made with coconut, jaggery and moong dal or any thing of your choice! The aromatic ghee and the crunchy nuts add an extra taste and richness to the Kozhukttai Recipe. This South Indian Recipe is very popular during a festival called ‘Vinayagar Chathurthi’ and it is a must sweet for this festive at all South Indian Homes!

I have given the recipe card, step-by-step illustration of the recipe with photographs and the video of the recipe.

Let’s head on to the recipe video…

Kozhukattai with Roti Maker – Recipe Video

Step-by-step Illustration of the recipe with photographs:

Moong Dal soaked for 10 minutes to prepare the stuffing called as “Pooranam”

The Recipe has got it’s variants in name such as Kolukattai, Kolukatai, Kozhukatai, Pooranam, and the modern moms call it as Sweet balls! You can either stuff the sweet inside a coating of rice flour roti or can mix rice flour along with the sweet stuffing to prepare this recipe! Here, we are preparing a stuffed Kozhukattai.

Jaggery & Cardamom seeds to be ground together without adding water

It is the stuffing i.e,, the Pooranam that adds taste to the sweet recipe. Healthy ingredients make it yet delicious and a great recipe even for kids! We also add Desi ghee (Pure Cow ghee) to make it super delicious and smell aromatic!

Coconut coarsely grind in a Mixer – wiper mode

All we need is a fresh coconut that can be ground to gratings with wiper mode in a Mixer. You can also use store bought desicated coconut and it tastes equally good! Why not use the fresh ones? After all, we are preparing the delicious recipe for our loved ones! So, give them the best and fresh at all times!

Cook the soaked Moong dal with little water just for 10 minutes!

All our ingredients for the stuffing are ready! So what next? Cook and mix! Cook the soaked moong dal by adding a little water and just for 10 minutes! Strain the extra water after cooking, or else our stuffing becomes watery. So it’s better to add only the required water for cooking!

Mix the ingredients of the Stuffing – Jaggery, Coconut & Cooked Moong Dal

Don’t forget to add a little salt to the stuffing i.e., the Pooranam as it enhances the taste! You can even add salt while cooking the dal but I added while mixing up all the ingredients together. Two table spoons of Desi Ghee add rich taste and aroma to the pooranam, so never ever forget to add it! This stuffing tastes great as such and you cab scoop it into a bowl and grab as such! I love to have it in such a way! So I always prepare some extra stuffing to be eaten without any outer layer of rice flour. Sometimes, I prepare Poli/Boli, another famous South Indian Sweet, made with the same stuffing but with a Roti like outer layer! So you can save some stuffing for making Poli/Boli the next day!

Rice Flour for the outer covering layer

The outer layer to cover the stuffing is made with rice flour. I have taken 1.5 cups of raw rice flour that we use to make Idiyapam (String Hoppers) recipe. You can also make Rice Flour Roti that’s another easier and healthier south Asian recipe made in just few minutes!

Add hot water (not boiling water) little by little to the rice flour mixed with salt & some ghee. You can forma thick dough after mixing up the water throughout the flour. Just look at the consistency in the above image. If you hold it, the shape retains! It’s perfect to make any kozhukattai and here we are going to stuff it with the authentic pooranam that we prepared just now!

The trick here we are going to use is a Roti Maker to make Kozhukattai! Yes, it sounds vague, right? With a roti maker we can make 3 to 5 kozhukattai in a minute but without using it we end up doing just one or two in the same time! You can check out the Roti Maker Useful or Not? video in my Youtube Channel “Let’s Cook Like Experts“.

Just press once with the rice flour kept in between two butter papers on the Roti Maker

As just shown in the image above, you can place a rice dough in between two butter papers that are greased with ghee and placed on the Roti Maker. For clear instructions on How to use the Roti Maker?, you can click the link.

The roti that we made should be of medium thickness and very thin roti may create holes while stuffing the Pooranam inside. So, what next? Just stuff and Steam the yummy Kozhukattai!

Placing the Pooranam inside the Rice flour Roti

After placing the stuffing, just fold in the middle to form a semi-circle. You can even press the edges with a fork to get beautiful designs on it! Multiple Kozhukkati shapers known as ‘Kozhukattai ache or Modak Mould” are available in the market. You can even try one to shape it like professionals!

Steam (on a oil/ghee coated plate) just for 10 minutes!

After Steaming in an Idly Pot or using any steamer just for 10 minutes, we are ready to taste the best ever sweet for the day! It’s really healthy and all authentic ingredients makes the recipe truly a South Indian sweet Recipe!

Yummy Sweet Pooranam Kozhukattai!

Just a give it a try and share your comments! The full recipe video – Kozhukattai with Roti Maker is available on our Youtube Channel “Let’s Cook Like Experts” and stay tuned for more yummy recipe!

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