Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Chicken 65

A dish that is always seen in a typical South Indian restaurant menu. This dish has always been a favourite among kids as well adults, something that is always ordered as a starter or side dish. The story behind how this dish got its name has many versions, as well as the way how this dish is made also has many versions. The weather here now leaves us with the craving to eat something hot and spicy. So gave a try to this spicy and juicy chicken dish. I have used yoghurt in this recipe, but I feel lemon juice or vinegar could have also been used instead of yoghurt, that would have been equally good too. You can try it that way too!
A perfect starter, this can be added to your New Year party menu:)
For marination
1/2 kg boneless chicken cut into small cubes
1 Tbsp ginger- garlic paste
1 Tbsp kashmiri chilli powder
1 Tbsp crushed black pepper
2 Tbsp corn flour
1 egg beaten well
 a pinch of red food colour(optional)-(I didn't use)
For the masala
1 cup yoghurt
few curry leaves
2-3 green chillies slit
1/2 tsp crushed red chillies
1 Tbsp ginger- garlic paste
2 Tbsp tomato ketchup
1/4 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp garam masala powder
1/2 tsp cumin powder
2-3 sprigs of spring onion, chopped for garnishing
salt to taste
oil for frying

  • Marinate the chicken with all the ingredients under marination and keep it overnight in the refrigerator or at least for 3-4 hours.
  • Fry the chicken pieces in hot oil until dark red in colour and keep aside, drained onto a kitchen towel to absorb the excess oil.
  • In another pan, heat approximately 2 Tbsp oil. Add the mustard and cumin seeds. Once it splutters add the curry leaves too.
  • Now add the ginger-garlic paste, crushed red pepper and fry for a second. Remove the pan from the flame and add the yoghurt and tomato ketchup. Mix well and return it back to the flame.
  • Add the fried chicken pieces and mix well.
  • Add the green chillies, garam masala powder and cumin powder. Check salt and add as required(as there is already salt added to the fried chicken).
  • Cook till the masala is fully absorbed by the chicken and it becomes dry.
  • Garnish with the chopped spring onions and serve hot.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Fruit Cake

Merry Christmas to all !
 Won't your Christmas be incomplete without a classic Christmas cake on the table? If there is no time left for a traditional Christmas cake that involves the months long procedure of soaking the fruits and nuts in rum, preparation of the caramel syrup etc, you can give a try to this simple fruit cake that can be made easily without rum or juice, not even eggs. What more this doesn't even require a beater to whip up the ingredients. If not for Christmas this cake is perfect for tea time too.

300gms mixed dry fruits( black raisins, chopped dates, walnuts, glaced cherries, cashewnuts)
125 gms soft  brown sugar
125 gms unsalted butter
200 ml brewed tea(preferably Earl Grey flavour)
2 tsp ground allspice powder(powder 1 stick cinnamon, 2-3 cloves, 2 cardamoms, a small piece of nutmeg with a pinch of sugar)
finely grated zest of 1 orange
225 gms self raising flour, sifted
1 Tbsp warm honey


  • In a saucepan place the mixed fruits and nuts, sugar, butter, tea and allspice powder. Heat until the butter melts, stirring occasionally.
  • Bring it to a boil. Allow it to boil for 1 minute. Then remove from heat and add the orange zest. Mix and set aside. Leave this overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 180 degree Celsius. Grease and line a 6 or 7 inch baking pan.
  • Fold the sifted flour into the fruit mixture. Mix gently then pour it to the prepared baking pan and bake in the oven for 50- 55 minutes or until golden and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and brush the top of the cake with warm honey.You can also place some ccaramelized nuts on top.
  • Leave it to cool completely and then turn out and serve in slices and enjoy.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Chettinad Chicken Biriyani

An aromatic biriyani cooked in a pressure cooker wherein the rice is cooked with the chicken infused with the richness of coconut milk and spices. This biriyani was bookmarked in my to make list since a long time, finally made it as per the recipe in my dear friend Rafee's blog. She has got an amazing collection of biriyanis and moreover each recipe I have tried out from her place was absolutely lip-smacking.

1 kg chicken, cut into medium pieces
3 cups basmati rice, washed and drained
3 tbsp ghee
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp black peppercorns
2 cardamoms
1 inch cinnamon stick
1 bay leaf
3/4 tsp fennel seeds
3 large onions, sliced thin
4-5 green chillies ,slit
2 tbsp ginger paste
2 tbsp garlic paste
2 large tomatoes, chopped
1/2 tbsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
Salt to taste
1-1/2 cup hot water
1-1/2 cup coconut milk
a handful of mint and coriander leaves chopped

  • Heat ghee in a pressure cooker(you must use a big one). Add the cloves, peppercorns, cardamoms, cinnamon, bay leaf and fennel seeds and fry for a minute.
  • Now add the sliced onions and green chillies. Saute until the onion turns translucent.
  • Add the ginger paste and garlic paste. Saute well until the raw smell goes.
  • Add the tomatoes and cook until the tomatoes turn mushy.
  • Add the coriander powder, chilli powder, turmeric powder, chicken and salt. Mix well and cook until the chicken is three fourth cooked.
  • Pour the hot water and coconut milk. Add the rice, half of the mint and coriander leaves and mix well. Close the cooker. Put on the whistle and cook on medium flame.
  • Once the cooker gives off one whistle, switch off and allow the pressure to go by itself.
  • Once the cooker is ready to open, open and fluff up the rice with a fork.
  • Garnish with the remaining coriander and mint leaves.
  • Serve with an onion raita, pappad and pickle.

*You can garnish with ghee fried cashewnuts and raisins too.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Ari Unda


1 cup matta rice
1/2 cup cashew nuts
1/2 to 3/4 cup grated coconut
1 1/4 cup grated jaggery
1/2 teaspoon powdered cardamom
A pinch of salt


Wash matta rice 3-4 times in water and drain.
Heat a non stick pan and add rice to it.
Stir on medium flame for 15 -20 minutes until the rice pops up.
Turn off the flame and allow it to cool.
In the same pan dry roast cashew nuts  on low flame until the colour changes to light brown.
Grind the roasted rice and  cashew nuts to a coarse powder.
In a bowl,add rice,cashew nuts,coconut,jaggery,cardamom powder and salt.
Mix everything well with hands and make small balls out of it and serve.