• Idly

    October 16th, 2010MammuTiffins/Breakfast

    Preparing Idlys is very easy but need to plan ahead. It usually takes 24 hours for the whole process to complete and the batter will be ready to use. You can prepare the batter once, refrigerate and make idlys multiple times. I usually prepares the batter for 2 weeks and makes them 3-4 times.
    Idly is simple and very light breakfast. You can serve Idlys in a different combinations with peanut chutney, coconut chutney, karam podi, sambar. I also love eating them with sugar and Ghee ­čÖé


    1. Urad Dal – 1 cup
    2. Idly rava – 2 cups
    3. Salt – 1 1/2 teaspoon

    Cooking Procedure

    1. Soak separately urad dal and idly rava over night. Rinse them 3-4 times with cold water. Grind the urad dal to fine batter adding around 3/4 cup of water, and transfer to a big bowl that fits double the quantity of the batter, to allow it for fermentation with out overflowing. Squeeze out all the water in the idly rava and add to the urad dal batter. Add salt, mix the batter thoroughly and let it ferment for 12-24 hours.

    2. When you are ready to cook them, grease the idly plates with very little oil, and fill them with the fermented batter. Place these idly plates in a pressure cooker, cook under low flame for 10 mins, medium flame for 5 minutes and again simmer for 5 more minutes. Turn off the heat, let the pressure go away from the cooker and carefully remove the plates out. Using a spoon, separate the idlys from the plates and serve immediately.

    Tip: While grinding the urad dal, don’t over heat the batter. Give it a pause and grind again. But make sure to grind to very smooth, so that Idlys will be soft. Batter ferments well in warm weather, so if its cold outside preheat and store it inside your oven overnight. Make sure to leave enough space in the bowl for the batter to expand while fermenting, or else it will over flow.

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    September 13th, 2010MammuTiffins/Breakfast

    Rava dosas do not need any prior preperation like other dosas. This is one quick option when ever we crave for dosa but dont have the batter ready at home. You can customize these crispy dosas by topping with onions, chilies, ginger etc while its cooked.

    Preperation Time: 15 Minutes

    Serves: 8-10 Dosas

    1. Sooji/Semolina/Upma rava – 1 cup
    2. Rice flour – 1/2 cup
    3. All purpose flour – 1/2 cup
    4. Salt – 2 teaspoons / Adjust to taste
    5. Cumin seeds – 1 teaspoon
    7. Green chilies – 2, chopped
    6. Oil – To drizzle on dosas

    Cooking Procedure

    1. Mix together sooji, rice flour, all purpose flour, salt, cumin seeds, green chilies with water to make it a very thin batter, should look like butter milk consistency.(I added around 4 1/2 cups water)

    2. Heat a tawa/flat pan on medium-high heat. When its hot enough, using your hand sprinkle the batter on the tawa, so that it spreads evenly over the tawa.

    3. Drizzle some oil over the dosa, let it cook, gently scrape it and fold. We do not turn it cook on the other side for rava dosa.

    Serve instantly with some chutney or sambar.

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    August 27th, 2010MammuTiffins/Breakfast

    This is one of my favourite breakfast item since childhood. For special occasions or when we have guests, this dish always come first in the menu. Olden days this is considered as a rich dish, both in nutrition and cost wise. I tried adding dill leaves to regular garelu recipe from my mom and they turned out really yummy with a nice flavor.

    Preperation Time: 40 Minutes
    Serves: Makes 12 Vadas

    1. Urad Dal – 1 Cup – Soaked in water over night.
    2. Chopped Dill leaves – 1/3 cup
    3. Chopped onion – 1/3 cup for vada and 1/4 cup for grinding.
    4. Chopped Ginger – 2 table spoons
    5. Green Chilies – 5, Finely chopped
    5. Water – 1/2 cup
    6. Salt – 1/2 teaspoon
    7. Oil – to deep fry

    Cooking Procedure

    1. Wash urad dal 3-4 times thoroughly with water. Drain all the water from urad dal, add 1/4 cup chopped onions and mix well. Grind to a coarse paste in small batches adding very little water(Do not add more than 1/2 cup water for the quantity in this recipe). Do not make it too smooth, vadas with get a nice texture if you can see small pieces of urad dal.

    2. Transfer to a bowl, add ginger, green chilies, dill leaves, salt and mix well.

    3. Heat oil in to deep fry vadas. Scoop about 3 table spoons of vada batter, make a round ball and place on a plastic paper, or wet cloth. Gently press with your fingers to make like a flat cookie, and make a hole in the center. Gently flip the vada on to your palm and slowly dip it in oil. Add about 4-5 vadas in a batch and deep fry till golden brown.

    Serve instantly with Peanut or ginger chutney.

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    August 15th, 2010MammuTiffins/Breakfast

    I tried to find ragi semiya in Indian stores here in LA, but no luck. So I tried this version of adding ragi flour to regular semiya and it turned out good. Steam cooking ragi flour is the key concept in this preparation. My friend Pavani told me this secret of steam cooking ragi flour, so that all the nutrition is preserved in the dish.

    Cooking Time: 20 Minutes

    Servings: 3-4


    1. Semiya – 2 Cups
    2. Ragi Flour – 4 tablespoons
    3. Peanuts – 1/2 Cup
    4. Red chili powder – 1 teaspoon
    5. Salt – 1 1/2 teaspoon
    6. Ginger – 1 Inch piece, finely chopped
    7. Green chilies – 2, finely chopped
    8. Onion – 1 cup finely chopped
    9. Oil – 2 tablespoons
    10. Lemon – 1 small
    11. Turmeric – A pinch
    12. Chopped Coriander – 2 table spoons

    Cooking Procedure

    1. Dry roast peanuts and let them cool. Grind together peanuts, red chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt to a coarse powder, keep it aside. (Don’t make it too powdery as it sticks to the mouth when added with semiya).

    2. Add 1 teaspoon of salt to 6 cups of water and bring to boil. While the water is boiling, heat the oil in a separate pan, add ginger, chilies and saute for 30 seconds. Add onions, turmeric and saute for 6-7 minutes. While the onions are getting cooked, add the semiya to the boiled water and cook for 3 minutes under medium heat. Drain semiya and add this to cooked onions immediately and mix well.

    3. Add ragi flour on top the semiya as shown in picture below, sprinkle some water on the ragi flour, don’t mix it, let it sit there, close the lid, simmer the heat and let it cook for 5 minutes. Ragi flour will be steamed cooked. Now add the peanut powder, mix gently if there any lumps, add coriander and turnoff the heat.

    Squeeze some lemon and serve instantly.

    Tip: Don’t cook the semiya for more than 3 minutes, or until just soft, else semiya will become soggy.

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    July 23rd, 2010MammuTiffins/Breakfast


    For dosa batter (You can use any left over dosa batter you have):

    1. Urad dal – 1/2 cup
    2. Rice – 1 1/2 cup

    For Punugulu:
    1. Dosa batter – 3 cups
    2. Onions – 1/2 cup, finely chopped
    3. Green chilies – 3, finely chopped
    4. Sooji – 3tbl sp
    5. Rice flour – 1 tbl sp (optional)
    6. Yogurt – 2 tbl sp
    7. salt – 1 tbl sp
    8. oil to deep fry

    For tomato chutney:
    1. Tomato – 1, cut into 8 pieces
    2. Green chilies – 3 (add more if you want it spicy)
    3. Jeera – 1/4 tbl sp
    4. Oil – 1/4 tbl sp
    5. salt – 1/4 tbl sp

    Cooking Procedure

    1. Dosa Batter: Soak the urad dal and rice for 10-12 hours. Drain the water and grind it well adding very little water, so that the better is thick. Keep aside for 24 hours to let it ferment. You can also use it instantly, by adding some grated mango or amchur powder to get the sour taste.

    2. Mix together Dosa batter, onions, green chilies, sooji, yogurt and salt. Adjust with rice flour if the batter is not thick. Heat the oil in a deep pan, take about 1tbl spoon of batter and gently put it in the oil in way that they make round balls. You can make about 10-12 punugulu in a batch. Keep mixing in between and fry until golden brown under medium heat.

    Tomato Chutney Preparation:

    1. Add oil to a pan and Saute the tomato and green chilies for 10 minutes. Let it cool. Grind together with cumin seeds and salt. Adjust salt according to the chilies spice level.

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    July 16th, 2010MammuTiffins/Breakfast


    Ragi (Millet) Flour – 1 cup
    Dosa Batter or Rice Flour – 1 cup
    Yogurt – 3/4 cup
    chopped Onions – 1/4 cup
    chopped green chilies – 2
    chopped cilantro – 1/4 cup
    Salt – 1 tbl sp
    Cumin seeds – 1/2 tbl sp (optional)
    Oats – 1/2 cup

    Cooking Procedure:

    1. Mix all the ingredients together and let it sit for 10 minutes.
    2. Heat the dosa pan or flat grilling pan, and sprinkle the dosa batter so that it spreads over the pan. Flip the dosa after 30 seconds and cook for 30 more seconds.

    Serve instantly with Tomato Chutney or peanut chutney. Makes 6 dosas.