Saturday, August 19, 2017

French Beans Recipes | Health Benefits of French Beans | Food Facts by Masterchefmom

Health benefits of French Beans

Hi Supermoms,

French Beans is full of vitamins and healing properties. From salads to stews, there is so much that you can cook with the french beans. Also you can alway use a handful of beans in some many dishes.It is so versatile and adds to the taste of the dish too. 

Here are a few recipe suggestions. 








Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom

Elephant Foot Yam Recipes | Health Benefits of Elephant Foot Yam | Food Facts by Masterchefmom

Health Benefits of Elephant Foot Yam

Hi Supermoms,

Elephant Foot Yam is filled with so much of health benefits. It is tasty and can be used in a variety of dishes. It is prudent for us to use this amazing vegetable in our daily diet. You can make so many interesting and delicious dishes using the elephant yam. Always apply some oil on your hands before you start cutting/chopping them. Also squeeze the juice of a lemon over the chopped yam and this helps prevent throat irritation of any kind. It is a good idea to use small amounts of tamarind or lemon in your yam preparations .

Here are a few yam recipes for you to try :





Bihar Style Yam Chutney 

Yam Erissery ( Kerala Style)


Avial ( Tamil Nadu Style Stew)


Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom

Ash Gourd Recipes | Health benefits of Ash Gourd | Food Facts By Masterchefmom

Ash gourd | Health Benefits of Ash Gourd

Hi Supermoms,

Along with recipes posts, I also wanted to share the health benefits of eating  vegetables. Ash Gourd/White pumpkin is commonly used in India in various preparations. It is filled with health benefits and it is wise to include ash gourd regularly in our diet. You can even drink the juice ( raw) of ash gourd on empty stomach for maximum nutrient absorption. You can also boil ash gourd, puree them and use it as a base to make North Indian Curries. 

Here are a few ash gourd recipes for you to try from my blog. 



Kashi Halwa ( Ash Gourd Dessert)

Tirunelveli Style Mor Kuzhambu ( Tangy Curd Curry)

Olan  ( Kerala Style Ash Gourd Stew)


Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom







Friday, August 18, 2017

Iyengar Bakery Style Cabbage Masala Dosai | Cabbage Masala Dosai Recipe | Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe

Iyengar Bakery Style Cabbage Masala Dosai

Hi Supermoms,

Iyengar Bakery Style Open sandwiches are famous in South India and I have loved them as a kid. A spicy cabbage masala is spread over bread and toasted. Yes, it is that simple. But the taste of these open sandwiches were such a rage. 

Recently I tried to recreate this sandwich in a more healthier way without compromising on the taste. Instead of the bread, I made dosai (gluten free and vegan crepes made from fermented rice and lentil batter) and it was so yummy !

Cabbage Masala



Iyengar Bakery Style Cabbage Masala Dosai :

Preparation time : 10 minutes
Cooking time : 20 minutes
Serves : 4-6 
1 cup = 250 ml cup

Ingredients :

3-4 cups dosai batter 
1 tablespoon sesame oil ( to cook dosai)

For the cabbage masala :

1 small cabbage ( finely chopped )
1 onion ( finely chopped)
2-3 green chillies ( finely chopped)
1/2 " ginger ( grated)
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder ( I used Kashmiri red chilli powder)
salt to taste

For tempering :

2 teaspoons oil
1 teaspoon mustard seeds 
1 sprig curry leaves

For garnish :

1/2 carrot (  grated) ( optional)
handful of cilantro/coriander leaves ( finely chopped)

Method :

1.  Heat a kadai/pan with oil and temper with ingredients given for tempering.
2. Add green chillies, ginger, onions , salt and spices.
3. Mix well and cook over low flame till the onions turn translucent.

4. Now add the finely chopped cabbage and cook over low flame till the cabbage is cooked and switch off.


5. Garnish and your masala is now ready.
6. Make dosai and spread the masala on one side and serve. 
7. Repeat this process for the entire batch . 

Your Cabbage Masala Dosai is now ready. 

Iyengar Bakery Style Cabbage Masala Dosai

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom






Sweet Potato Masala Dosai | Sakkaravalli Kizhangu Masala Dosai Recipe | Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe

Sweet Potato Masala Dosai

Hi Supermoms,

We all know that 'Masala Dosai' is World famous. Boiled and lightly mashed potatoes are cooked along with green chillies, onions and peas. Turmeric gives the vibrant colour and green chillies gives the right amount of spice. Spread inside a dosai and folded, the masala dosai is simply irresistible. You can get the complete recipe of classic masala dosai here. 

To give a variety to the dosai and also make the tiffin more healthy, I have used sweet potato. Sweet Potato is so nutritious and this is another tasty recipe for you to use the sweet potato(sakkaravalli kizhangu in Tamil ). 


You can get the Sweet Potato Halwa Recipe here . You can get the Sweet Potato Chaat Recipe here. You can also try Sweet Potato Chips

Sweet Potato Masala Dosai


Sweet Potato Masala Dosai :

Preparation time : 10 minutes
Cooking time : 15 minutes
Serves : 4-6
1 cup = 250 ml cup

Ingredients :

3- 4 cups Dosai batter 

For the masala:

1 large sweet potato ( boiled, peeled and cubed)
1 onion ( thinly sliced)
3 - 4 green chillies ( adjust according to the heat of the chillies)
1/4 cup fresh peas ( shelled)
1/2 " ginger ( grated)
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder 
salt to taste

For garnish :

4-5 roasted cashew nuts ( halved)
handful of cilantro/coriander leaves ( finely chopped) 
1 teaspoon lemon juice

For tempering :

2 teaspoons oil 
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon channa dal /bengal gram dal
1/2 teaspoon urad dal/husked and split black gram 
1 sprig curry leaves ( roughly torn)

Method :

1. Heat a kadai/pan with oil and temper with ingredients given under ' For tempering'. 
2. Once tempered , add thinly sliced onions, salt, turmeric powder and mix well.
3. When the onions turn transparent , add peas and 1/4 cup water.
4. Cover and cook for 2-3 minutes.
5. Now add the boiled sweet potato and mix well.

6. Cook over low flame for 5-7 minutes and switch off. 
Chef tip : Use the ladle to gently mash the sweet potato . The masala must be thick. 
7. Garnish and your sweet potato masala is now ready. 

8. Make dosai like regular dosai . 
9. Take two spoonfuls of the masala over the cooked dosai and spread it on one side.
10. Fold the dosai and serve.
11. Repeat the same process for the remaining batter.

Delicious and healthy sweet potato masala dosai .

Sweet Potato Masala Dosai

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom















Sunday, August 13, 2017

Village Style Milagu Biryani Recipe | Milagu Biryani | Pepper Biryani | Kali Mirch Biryani | Gluten Free Recipe

Milagu Biryani Recipe

Hi Supermoms,

Milagu/Kali Mirch means Black peppercorns. Black peppercorns have numerous health benefits. In India, they are even used in Ayurvedic medicinal preparations. Black peppercorns are believed to aid digestion, increase appetite, soothe gum and teeth problems , and even helps in combating arthritis. 

This Biryani is native to the Villages of Tamil Nadu, India. You can add vegetables of your choice. 

I have made the basic Milagu Biryani recipe as I had run out of fresh vegetables. So, this recipe is handy even for the days you do not have any vegetables in your refrigerator. 

The Biryani tastes best when you cook it in an earthen pot. However, you can also cook them in a rice cooker ( electric) or a regular pressure cooker.

Milagu Biryani

 Village Style Milagu Biryani Recipe :

Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time : 40-45 minutes
Serves : 4
1 cup = 250 ml cup

Ingredients :

1 cup seeraga samba rice ( or Sona Masoori boiled rice /Ponni boiled rice varieties)
2 & 1/2 cups water ( adjust)
salt to taste

For the Biryani Masala:

1 &1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
4-5 garlic pods ( peeled, crushed)
1/2 " ginger piece ( peeled, grated)
1/2 teaspoon oil

For tempering :

1 tablespoon ghee/clarified butter ( or oil)
1 bay leaf 
2 cloves 
1-2 green cardamom
1/2 " cinnamon stick
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds/jeera
12-15 shallots /sambar onions ( or onions, thinly sliced)
2 tomatoes ( finely chopped)

For garnish ( optional) :

1 teaspoon ghee or oil
5-6 cashew nuts 
1 onion ( thinly sliced, roasted in ghee or oil ) 

Method :

1. Wash rice and soak in water for 30 minutes.

2. In the meanwhile, roast the ingredients given for the biryani masala till they turn fragrant.

3. Switch off, transfer them to the jar of a mixer , powder them and set aside.
4. Heat the cooking pot with ghee over low flame.
5. Add all the whole spices,and cook for 1minute or till fragrant.

6. Now add the shallots, tomatoes, salt and cook for 3-4 minutes .
7. Add the ground masala powder , curd and mix well.

8. Now add the rice along with water.

9. Cover and cook till the rice is soft and switch off.

Chef tip : If using pressure cooker, let it cook upto just 2 whistles and switch off.
10. Toast the cashew nuts, add it to the Biryani and mix well. 


Your Milagu Biryani is ready for lunch. I served it along with Dangar Pachadi

Milagu Biryani Recipe

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom









Friday, August 11, 2017

Yellow Pumpkin Milkshake | Kaddu Ki Kheer | Gluten Free and Vegan Pumpkin Shake



Hi Supermoms,

Yellow Pumpkin / Kaddu ( Hindi)/Parangikkai( Tamil) is rich in beta carotene. It helps in  better vision , skin and hair . Also, yellow pumpkin is believed to control blood pressure. It helps to keep one energetic and active. It is high in nutrients and low in calories and this makes it a favourite vegetable even for people who are on a diet. 

Though I make various Indian curries using this vegetable, I love making dessert with them. I have earlier made a pumpkin cheese cake, using the yellow pumpkin and it was so delicious. Today I am sharing a simple kheer/milk shake recipe that can be made very quickly. 

You can make it with regular milk or use coconut milk/soy milk or any other nut milk ( like almond or cashew nut ) of your choice . This recipe is from my friend Mrs. Geeta Ganesh, who lovingly made this drink for us to enjoy during one of our get togethers. 

She played a guessing game asking us to identify the main ingredient . None of us could guess that it was pumpkin. It tasted just like Badam Kheer. 

If you have to make a drink for a large group ( Navratri is approaching😀 ) , then you can try this drink. Tasty and healthy too.


Yellow Pumpkin Milk Shake | Kaddu Ki Kheer Recipe :

Preparation time : 5 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes
Serves : 4-6
1 cup = 250 ml cup 

Ingredients :

250 gm Yellow Pumpkin( de seeded, peeled and cubed)
3/4 cup sugar ( adjust) 
3 cups milk ( of your choice ) 
1 cardamom ( finely powdered)
6-7 saffron strands 

Method :

1. In a heavy bottom vessel, add 2-3  cups of water, chopped pumpkin and cook over medium flame till they are tender. 
2. Drain the pumpkin and add it to the jar of a  mixer/food processor and grind it to a smooth puree, adding the drained water, little at a time.
3. Now add milk , sugar and grind again.
Chef tip: You can do this in batches.
4. Transfer the milk shake to a serving jug/jar/bottle , add the cardamom powder, saffron strands and mix well.

5. Refrigerate the milk shake for at least 30 minutes .

Your refreshing Yellow Pumpkin Milkshake is ready to be enjoyed. 

Yellow Pumpkin Milkshake

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom








Thanjavur Style Dangar Pachadi | Urad Dal Raita Recipe | Traditional Recipe from Tanjore



Hi Supermoms,

Have you heard about this pachadi ? 

Dangar Pachadi is a traditional pachadi recipe that is native to the Tanjore/Thanjavur district of Tamil Nadu. Though there is a Dangar in Chettinadu cuisine too ( shall share that recipe soon).  This is a heirloom recipe and  I make this pachadi when I do not have any fresh vegetables at home. Today was one such day and I had made this as a side dish to Milagu Biryani . 

All we need to make this dish is urad dal /split and husked black gram and curd. It is so flavourful and tasty. Also, it takes less than 10 minutes to prepare the pachadi. 

Dangar Pachadi


Thanjavur Style Dangar Pachadi :

Preparation time : 2 minutes
Cooking time : 5-7 minutes
Serves : 2-3 
1 cup = 250 ml cup

Ingredients 

1 tablespoon urad dal/split and husked black gram
1 cup curd ( whisked)
1/2 cup buttermilk ( adjust)
salt to taste

For tempering :

2 teaspoons oil
1/2 teaspoon mustard oil
1 dry red chilli ( adjust) ( roughly torn if using the long variety)
pinch of asafoetida
1 sprig curry leaves ( roughly torn)

Method :

1. Heat a small pan and dry roast the urad dal till they turn  light brown and switch off. 
2. Transfer it to the jar of a mixer and grind to a fine powder.

3. Add the ground powder , salt to well whisked curd and mix well without any lumps.


4. Heat a small ladle/pan with oil and temper with ingredients given under 'For tempering'.
5. Mix and serve.

Your Dangar Pachadi is ready !!

 Dangar Pachadi

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom




Thursday, August 10, 2017

Nellai Special Kootanchooru | Kootanchooru Recipe | Mixed Vegetable Curry Rice from Tirunelveli | Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe

 Kootanchooru Recipe

Hi Supermoms,

'Kootu' means 'to mix or to join' in Tamil. 'Chooru' means rice. A tangy mixture of various vegetables, lentils and rice that is cooked together is called 'Kootanchooru'. This dish is native to the Tirunelveli District ( Nellai) of Tamil Nadu , India. It is considered a picnic food as it is easy to prepare , carry and also tastes great even when eaten cold. 

The Kootanchooru might remind you of the Bisi Bele Bath of Karnataka as they look similar. While the bisibelebath is cooked (traditionally) without vegetables, the Kootanchooru has plenty of vegetables.Also, the spices used for both are completely different.  The main speciality of this dish is that all garden fresh (local and seasonal) vegetables are used.  Even better, the vegetables from one's own garden adds to the deliciousness of the Kootanchooru. 

Par boiled rice and lentils are cooked/simmered along with the vegetables for great tasting Kootanchooru. In short, a one pot healthy dish. They are served in banana leaves and vadams/appalams are perfect accompaniment. 

 Kootanchooru Recipe


Nellai Special Kootanchooru :

Preparation time : 10 minutes
Cooking time : 45 minutes
Serves : 4
1 cup = 250 ml cup 

Important Note : Vegetables that you can use for this dish are :

Brinjal/Eggplant ( smaller variety , halved)
Yellow pumpkin ( de-seeded, peeled and cubed)
white pumpkin ( de-seeded, peeled and cubed)
Raw Banana/plantain ( peeled and cubed)
drumstick (cut into 2 inch pieces, use tender ones )
drumstick leaves ( if available)
cluster beans OR Lima beans  ( cut into 2 inch pieces)
tomatoes ( the local variety, optional)
raw mango ( cubed with skin , optional)
15 shallots / sambar onions ( peeled)

Ingredients :

1 cup par boiled rice/puzhungal arisi ( I used Sona Masoori par boiled rice)
1/4 cup pigeon peas/tuvar dal 
2 cups mixed vegetables ( chopped)
medium gooseberry size tamarind ( soak in warm water and extract the juice) 
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder 
1 teaspoon sesame oil 
rock salt to taste 

For the Masala ( grind raw):

10 shallots/sambar onion
1-2 green chillies ( adjust according to the heat of the chillies) 
6-7 dry red chillies ( I used Salem gundu milagai variety)
1/4 cup fresh coconut ( finely chopped)
4-5 garlic pods  ( peeled)

For tempering :

1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon mustard seeds (OR you can use thalippu vadam for added taste) 
10 shallots /sambar onions ( finely chopped) 
pinch of asafoetida 
1 sprig curry leaves ( roughly torn)


Method :

1. Wash rice and dal and soak it in 4 cups of water for 30 minutes.
2. Grind the masala and set it aside.
3. Heat an earthen pot or heavy bottom vessel/ pressure cooker with oil.
4. Add all the vegetables, turmeric powder, salt and cook over low heat for 5 minutes.
5. Add the extracted tamarind juice , and the ground masala.


6. Add the soaked rice and dal along with the water.
7. Partially cover and cook the mixture till the rice and dal are completely cooked and soft.
Chef tip: You can pressure cook upto 2 whistles and switch off. But , avoid drumstick if you are pressure cooking. 
8. Heat a pan with oil and temper with ingredients given under 'For tempering '.
9. Pour it over the rice and mix well.

I always add a teaspoon of hot ghee to the rice, it adds great flavour . If you are vegan, you can skip this step .

Your wholesome and delicious Kootanchooru is ready !!

Nellai Special Kootanchooru |

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom












Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Arisi Payasam | Traditional South Indian Rice Kheer Recipe using Jaggery


Arisi Payasam

Hi Supermoms,

'Payasam' is the sweet preparation made on special occasions and festivals in most Indian  homes. There are so many varieties of payasam that you can make. Today, I am sharing a quick and easy payasam that can be made with just a handful of ingredients. Also, it is refined sugar free . Do you know that the word 'rice' originated from the Tamil word 'arisi'? 

'Arisi', is a gluten free and healthy grain . It is cooked along with bengal gram making it a tasty and wholesome preparation. 

If you are Vegan, you can substitute milk with  nut milk of your choice. Ghee can be completely omitted and you can dry roast the cashews. 

Rice Kheer

Arisi Payasam:

Preparation time : 5 minutes
Cooking time : 20 minutes
Serves : 4
1 cup = 250 ml cup

Ingredients :

1/4 cup raw rice ( I used Sona Masoori raw rice variety)
2 teaspoons bengal gram/channa dal
1/2 cup jaggery ( powdered)
3/4 cup water 
2 green cardamom pods ( powdered)
2 cups milk ( adjust)( coconut milk also tastes great in this payasam)

For garnish :

1 teaspoon ghee/clarified butter
5-6 cashew nuts ( halved)

Method :

1. Heat a kadai or pan over low flame and dry roast the rice and dal till they turn fragrant.
2. Cool and grind them coarsely .

3. Mix water with jaggery and filter.
4. Transfer the filtered jaggery water to a kadai or pan.

5. Place the kadai over low /medium flame.
6. When the jaggery water starts to warm up, add the ground mixture and stir continuously to mix without any lumps.
7. Cook till the rice and dal are completely cooked.
Chef tip : Adjust water quantity.
8. Switch off and add the roasted cashew nuts.

9. Once the mixture has cooled down a little , add milk and mix well.
Chef tip : Adjust milk quantity according to the consistency of payasam you like. 

Your Arisi Payasam is ready .

Traditional Rice Kheer

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom









Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Kalyana Kattu Sadam | Kattu Sadam Recipe | Variety Rice Recipe from India | Gluten Free and Vegan Recipe


Kattu Sadam Recipe

Hi Supermoms,


' Kattu Sadam' literally means 'Packed Rice'. This is the most ideal variety rice that is packed for travel. This rice is often associated with our marriages as it is packed and given to all the close relatives as a 'take away'. 

Marriage food is so rich ( our marriages are usually a 3 day celebration 😀) and this rice helps in detoxifying our system as it has the black night shade seeds/Manathakali Vathal and/or turkey berries/Sundakkai Vathal , known for their digestive properties. The rice absorbs all the flavours with time and  tastes great when eaten cold making it most ideal for lunch box/picnics etc., 

Kattu Sadam Recipe


Kattu Sadam Recipe :

Preparation time : 5 minutes
Cooking time : 15-20 minutes
Serves : 2
1 cup = 250 ml cup

Ingredients :

1 cup raw rice ( I used Sona Masoori raw rice)
small gooseberry size tamarind ( soak in 1/2 cup of warm water and extract the juice)
1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder
salt to taste

For roasting and grinding :

1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon channa dal/ Bengal gram
1 teaspoon dhaniya/coriander seeds
1/4 teaspoon methi seeds
6-7 dry red chillies ( I used salem gundu milagai)

For tempering :

2 teaspoons sesame oil
2 teaspoons manathakali Vathal OR sundakkai vathal
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 sprig curry leaves 
pinch of asafoetida

Method :

1. Cook rice with just adequate water so that they are soft but not mushy.
Chef tip : The water quantity will depend upon the type of rice you are using. The rice :water ratio that I kept was 1:2 .
2. Spread the cooked rice on a wide plate and allow it to cool.
3. In the meantime, heat a kadai/wok/pan with a teaspoon of oil, fry the ingredients giving under 'For roasting and grinding' till they turn fragrant .
4. Transfer them to the jar of a mixer and grind them coarsely.
5. Heat a wide pan/kadai with oil and temper with the ingredients given for the same.

6. Once tempered add the tamarind extract , ground spice powder,  turmeric powder and salt. 

7. Add 1/2 cup of water and allow the mixture to cook till it thickens .
Chef tip : The oil will start oozing out on the sides of the kadai.
8. You can switch off and add the rice.
9. Mix well to coat the rice evenly , taste and adjust the salt quantity. 


Your delicious Kattu Sadam is ready to be served or packed . Poppadoms/appalam, vadams go very well with this rice. 


Kattu Sadam Recipe

Happy Cooking !

With love,

Masterchefmom





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