October 25, 2008

Rava Kesari ~ A quick and easy way

I wonder if anybody as a beginner in cooking has ever got making kesari correctly. I never did. No matter how much I made it with care it never came out well. Finally I gave up and vowed never to do it until my MIL’s neighbour told me to do this kesari in this way. This is a fail proof method where there is no fear of any lumps forming or getting over cooked or under cooked.
Ever did Kesari in Pressure cooker? Because that is how I did this kesari. This is an easy and quick way and a boon to people who don’t have a Microwave. It also always comes out very well. Here goes the recipe.
Rava Kesari

Rava / Sooji / Cream of wheat – 1 cup
Sugar – 1 ½ cup
Milk – 1 cup
Ghee – ¾ cup
Water – 1 cup
Cashew nuts – 1 tbsp
Salt – 1 pinch
Cardamom powder – ½ tsp
Kesari or Orange food color – 2 pinches


In a little ghee roast the cashew nuts to golden brown and keep aside.
In a heavy bottomed kadai pour the ghee and melt it. Once it melts, put the rava into it and fry it well till the raw smell disappears. Take care that the rava does not change color. In another stove boil the milk. Pour the hot milk into the kadai. Mix well. And keep aside.

In another vessel heat the water and add sugar to it. Cook till the sugar dissolves completely. Now add the cardamom powder, food color and a pinch of salt. See to that this vessel fits into the cooker. Now to this sugar water add the rava and milk mixture and mix it well.

Place this vessel in the cooker and on a high flame cook for 1 whistle sound. After the pressure gets released, take the vessel out and add the roasted cashews and mix well. Serve hot.

This rava kesari is off to JFI : Festival treats hosted by Srivalli
WYF – party Food event hosted by Easy Crafts.

A Very Happy Diwali to All the Foodies and their Families.
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October 21, 2008

Carrot and beans Sambar

I am a great fan of this sambar and my mother does this sambar very well. This was new to my MIL as she was not aware that sambar could be made with carrots and beans. After she tasted this she immediately fell in love with it. She uses only country vegetables also mentioned Nattu Kaikari like drumstick, yam, Brinjals etc.,. We both learned a lot from each other and I am forever grateful to my mother and my MIL for having the patience and mention the mistake gently when something went wrong in the cooking when I was initially learning to cook.
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October 20, 2008

Komola Kheer

During my childhood I remember the Durga pujas being celebrated grandly by the Bengalis as they lived at large in our colony. They used to rent the community hall and they will invite all the people to get the blessings. A big statue of Durga Ma will be kept and the celebration will go on for 9 days. During that time variety of sweets are made by the women and presented as Prasadams to appease Goddess Durga. After the elaborate puja ceremony the Bengalis distribute the sweets as prasads to all the people present there.
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October 17, 2008

Pulichakeerai Thokku ~ Gongura Pickle | Step by Step Recipe

Being a typical Andhraiite Hubby dear loves this. Though I did nor favour this before my marriage I now like this very much. Gongurra leaves being rich in iron content is a must eat for an anemic person. This thokku is very handy and I learned this version from my MIL. The shelf life is more than two weeks and you don’t have to refrigerate it.

Pulichakeerai / Gongurra Thokku

Here is a step by step method for doing this recipe

Heat Gingelly oil in a kadai and add the cleaned gongurra leaves and start sauteeing. You can see that the leaves will start to shrink and become pulpy.

The leaves have become to a pulp and are ready to be ground along with spices

You'll Need:

Pulichakeerai / Gongurra leaves – 1 bunch
Red chilli powder – 2 ½ tsp
Vengaya Kari Vadagam – ¼ tsp (optional)
Mustard seeds – ¼ tsp
Channa dal – 1 tsp
Salt – 1 tsp or to taste
Gingelly Oil – 10 tsp


Pick just the leaves. Clean and wash them in water and spread them on a cloth and let the leaves dry. There should be no moisture left in them.

In a pan heat 4 tsp of oil and add the leaves. You can see them starting to shrink and change color. Keep stirring till all the leaves have shrunk and it fully changes color.
Now in a mixie jar add the coriander, red chilli powder, salt and the gongurra leaves and grind it without adding any water coarsely or till all of them mix together.

In the same pan add the remaining oil and put the vengaya vadagam or the mustard seeds and the channa dal. Now add this ground paste to it and mix well. Cook for 5 minutes till all the oil gets completely absorbed. Store in an air tight container and use when needed. This will stay good for more than 15 days in room temperature.

How to serve :
While using mix 2 tsp of this thokku  to cooked hot rice. Add one tsp of ghee or gingelly oil. Mix well and serve with pappadams.

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October 16, 2008

Tickling Palates


I'm Radhika, a mother of 2 young boys and love to cook for them. 

As I had a full time working mother, I think I started learning to cook right from an early age say 11 or 12 in an effort to help her. Food has always been a subject of sustenance to me till I had kids on my own. 

I believe that once you have kids on your own the entire perspective on life and food changes. At least it did for me. I started looking out for healthy and easy to cook food to make meal times for interesting for them. As of now the elder one happens to be "THE" foodie of the family and is my best critic. The youngest one is the hardest to please, a picky eater who has slowly started to eat just now. On the whole, I like and enjoy cooking for my family.

I reside in Chennai, India. I'm game for trying out any recipe as long as it happens to be vegetarian as I happen to be one too. In this space you will find vegetarian recipes with an exception to some egg based recipes for the sake of my children.

Baking has become my new found love ever since I got my Microwave oven with the convection mode. I concentrate more on learning the techniques of this science called baking. I'm making slow progress but will definitely reach there where I can boast that I'm one among the best.

You can contact me at ticklingpalates@gmail.com  You can find also find me on Facebook and TwitterHope you all get to spend a great time in my space and enjoy the recipe collection.

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October 13, 2008

Coriander and Carrot Soup

Arjun happily returned home on Saturday after a week of staying alone with his grandparents for the first time. He felt very proud that he did not ask and cry for Daddy or mummy. Though I felt sad when he left I felt quite happy and proud that he behaved himself and didn’t create any problems during his stay. I was going thru my emails when he returned on Saturday and all of a sudden he asked me whether I had posted any soups in the blog during his absence and I said no. Though I make soups often and have lots of them in my drafts I wonder why I never got around to posting them. As this will be my first blog on soups I did not want to post any from the drafts and wanted make a new one.  

Contrary to last week’s MET Department’s forecast that there will be a three week delay in the starting of monsoon, it has been raining since Saturday night which makes a pleasant change after the scorching heat. May be the rain God took pity on us. What better time to make soup and enjoy the weather. This was the decent shot that I could manage before being carried off to the table as we had some family friends while I was making this soup. They enjoyed it very much.

The first time I made this recipe was seven years back which I got from a monthly magazine. I followed the instruction to the T and the result was that you should have seen my Hubby’s face after he took a sip. He said that it tasted like more like a kashayam than a soup and smelled of raw coriander. It was a lesson that I would never forget that not to follow instructions blindly but to imagine it in my mind and be sure whether it would really work out. Since then I had made some changes to this recipe till it tasted right and it is now a keeper and the most often requested one in my house hold.

Coriander and Carrot soup

Coriander leaves with the stalk– ½ bunch
Carrot, big - 1
Toor Dal – 2 tbsp
Onion, small – 1
Green chili, slit lengthwise – 1 (optional)
Ginger – 1 small piece
Garlic – 2 pods
Aji-no-moto – ½ tsp
Salt – to taste
Oil – ½ tsp
Water – 3 cups
Whole spices
Coriander seeds – 1 tsp
Cumin seeds – ½ tsp
Pepper – ¼ tsp
Bay leaf – 1


Clean and wash the coriander leaves and chop them roughly. Chop the carrots and onions roughly. Crush the whole spices roughly except the bay leaf.

In a pressure pan heat the oil and add the onions. Saute for aminute and now add the carrots and coriander leaves and sauté them just for a few seconds till the coriander leaves shrink in their size. Now add the toor dal and 2 cups of water.

In a soup bag or a piece of clean white cloth place the crushed whole spices along with bay leaf, ginger, garlic and green chili and tie them into a bag and place this bag into the cooker. Close the cooker and cook in a medium flame for 3 whistles. Wait and open after the pressure gets released.

Take out the soup bag and squeeze out well and put it away. Pour the contents in a liquidizer and blend them well. Strain the blended mush through a strainer.

Place the strained soup in a pot. Add one more cup of water, aji-no-moto, salt and reheat for two minutes, sprinkle more pepper powder if you want and serve piping hot.

The addition of toor dal gives the soup more body and good texture. Keep this hot and spicy soup as your company on a rainy day and you won’t feel like asking for more.

This soup is off to Siri’s Herb Mania: Coriander started by Ammalu's Kitchen
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October 10, 2008

Paneer Makhani

The love for paneer seems to be growing more and more day by day in my house hold. Every week my kids insist on making a new dish out of paneer which makes me go in search for more paneer dishes. Here is one such paneer dish which I made yesterday.

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I learned this traditional recipe of Karnataka from my neighbour who is from Coorg, Karnataka. Though we make sweet samosas also known as somasis during the festival time the stuffing that we use is completely different from what they use. They both look alike but vary in taste. She told me that the Coorg cuisine is most popular for non-vegetarian dishes which use mainly pork but their sweets are very rich in taste and also famous all over Karnataka.

After making this when I gave her some for tasting she told me that I had gotten the taste correctly which made me quite happy. I had followed her quantity of the ingredients and instructions to the dot. They make this sweet dish during the durga pooja celebrations and also during Diwali. So here goes the recipe……..

All purpose flour / Maida – 500 gm
Ghee – 100 gm
Sugar – 200 gm
Jaggery – 200 gm
Coconut – ½
Cardamom – 5
Salt – 2 pinch
Oil – for frying

In a mixing bowl mix the maida and salt together and rub in a little ghee. Add little water and knead them into dough. The dough should be tight. Keep it aside.

Grate the jaggery and coconut and keep it aside. In a heavy bottomed pan melt the ghee, add the grated jaggery, coconut, sugar, crushed cardamom and mix them together. Keep stirring over a low flame till the jaggery and sugar melts completely and all of them get mixed and form a ball shape. Remove from flame and let it to cool. Make small lemon sized balls from this mixture.

Divide the dough into balls and roll them out into puris. Place one ball of the sweet mixture on one half the puri and fold the other part over the small part into a crescent shape and seal the edges with small twists provided you have the patience and experience to manage these twists. I used a karjikai or samosa mould for this to make my work easier.

If you are using the mould, grease the insides with a little ghee or oil and place the poori into the mould, place the sweet ball on one half and lock and press the mould. Make sure that the puris are bigger than the mould so that it will be easier for you to take out the extra dough that comes out of the mould to get a perfect shape.

Heat the oil in a kadai and deep fry these puris over a medium flame till they become golden brown in color and serve hot. you can decorate it with silver warq paper as I have done on top while the kajirakais are still hot.

This karjikai is off to the following events :
Yummy festival feast hosted by Pallavi
Deep fried sweets hosted by Mythreyee
JFI: Festival treats hosted by Srivalli
FIC : Brown hosted by Sunshine Mom
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October 7, 2008

Recipe Index

Thank you for showing interest in the recipes of this site.  All the recipes you see here are tried and tested in my kitchen. Hope you try out and enjoy these as much as my family did.
You may wish to subscribe to this site via RSS Feed, Follow me on Twitter, Like my Facebook page to get regular updates of this site.
And if you like what you made, do send a picture of the recipe that you tried to ticklingpalates@gmail.com and I shall share it on my Facebook Page

Chocolate Cup Cakes

Eggless Baking
Apple Crumble Rolls
Apple Banana Muffins
Baked Donuts with Chocolate Glazesalad
Banana Cinnamon Scones
Cottage Cheese Cake (Paneer Cake)
Chocolate Espresso Cake
Cookies / Biscuits / Biscotti

Butter Cookies

Dhoklas / Tomato Dhoklas
Eggless Oats and Dates Pancakes
Godhuma Dosa
Healthy Chewy Granola Bars
Idlis with Tricolor Chutneys
Idli Upma with Lemon
Onion Rava Dosa
Oats Rajma Toast
Instant Oats Idlis
Mung Bean Sprouts and Spinach Conjee (Porridge)
Mushroom Grilled Cheese Sandwich
Mushroom Stuffed Kuzhi Paniyaram
Onion Oothappam
Pasta Upma
Pasta In Roasted Red Bell Pepper Sauce
Paasiparuppu Puttu
Pesarattu Dosa
Rava Khichdi
Rava Semiya Idli
Rava Upma
South Indian Breakfast Thali
Venn Pongal

Chutney / Thuvaiyal / Thokku Varieties
Garlic Smoked Tomato Chutney
Ginger Chutney (Inji Chutney)
Ginger Thogayal / Allam Pachadi
Ginger Tomato Chutney
Hotel Coconut Chutney
Hotel Tiffin Sambar
Ketti Chutney
Onion Chutney
Onion Tomato Gotsu
Pachcha Thakkali Chutney
Peerkangai Thogayal / Ridge gourd Chutney
Pudina / Mint Thokku
Pudina Thogayal
Mango Pudhina Thogayal (without coconut)
Tomato Onion Chutney
Verkadalai /  Groundnut Chutney

Gravies / Sambar Varieties
Idli Sambar  (with Moong Dal)
Kadappa Recipe / Kumbakonam Kadappa

Spice Powder / Podi Varieties
Idli Milagai Podi
Poondu Milagai Podi / Garlic Gun powder


Rice Varieties

Aloo Gobhi Pulao
Coconut Rice (Thengaai Saadam)
Coriander Biryani
Curd Rice ~ Thayir Sadam
Garlic Fried Rice (Sinangag)
Karuveppilai Sadam (Spicy Curry leaf Rice)
Mango Rice (Maanga Sadham)
Mushroom and Peas Pulao
Peas Pulao
Pepper Fried Rice
Poondu Vengaya Puliodharai
Soya Chunks Peas Pulao
Spicy Coconut Rice
Tomato Pulao
Tomato Methi Pulao
Tomato Rice
Vegetable Biriyani
Vegetable Brinji Rice
Vegetable Pulao

Capsicum Sambar
Carrot Beans Sambar
Chettinad Kalyana Vatral Kulambu
Chettinad Kaara Kulambu
Chettinad Kathirikkai Poondu Kulambu
Chettinad Thakkali Kulambu
Chow-Chow / Chayote Sambar
Drumstick / Murungakkai Sambar
Ennai Kathirikkai Kulambu (No Onion / Garlic)
Gongurra Pappu / Dal
Karuveppilai Poondu Kulambu (Spicy Curry Leaves & Garlic Gravy)
Kathirikkai Kaara Kulambu  (Brinjal Spicy Gravy)d
Keerai Masiyal
Kothavarangai / Cluster Beans Puli Kulambu
Mamidikaya Pappu / Mango Dal
Malli Kulambu
Milagu Kuzhambu
Milagu Rasam
Methi Dal
Mochai Kulambu
Mochai Puli Kulambu
Mor Kulambu
Mullangi / Radish Sambar
Murungakai Puli Kulambu
Murungakeerai Paruppu (Drumstick leaves Dal)
Pachcha Thakkalikkai Paruppu (Raw Green Tomato Dal)
Peerkangai Oorpu
Poondu Sambar
Pulichakeerai Thokku
Quick Rasam (With sambar powder)
Seeraga Kulambu (Spicy Cumin Gravy)
Vankayya Bhajji / Pappu (Aubergine Dal)
Vendakkai Puli Kulambu / Vendakkai Puli Pachadi
Vatral Kulambu 
Vengaya Kari Vadagam


Mango Thokku Pickle

Podi/Spice Powder for Rice
Paruppu Podi

Chinese Stir Fried Vegetable Parathas
Homemade Naan | without yeast | Stove top Method (Step by Step)
Homemade Whole wheat flour Tortillas
Methi Thepla
Paneer Parathas
Paneer Wraps


Aloo Gobhi
Aloo Channa Masala
Baked Shahi Paneer
Bhindi Masala
Broccoli Peas Kurma
Cauliflower Peas Kurma
Channa Masala
Chavli Amti (Black Eyed Peas Curry)
Chettinad Paneer Pirattal
Chettinad Vegetable Kurma
Chilli Paneer
Dal Makhani (Restaurant Style)
Dal Paneer Masala
Dal Tadka
Egg Masala Gravy
Egg Bhurji
Gobi Gulistan
Gulab Jamun Spicy Curry
Hot, Sweet & Sour Vegetables
Kadai Paneer
Kadai Mushroom
Kadai Vegetable Gravy
Kashmiri Dum Aloo
Kerala Kadala Curry 
Kothamalli Channa Curry
Matar Paneer
Matar Panner Butter Masala
Mixed Vegetable Kurma or Chapathi Kurma
Moong Sprouts Bhaji
Mushroom & Peas Makhani
Mushroom Masala
Mushroom Pepper Fry
Peas Masala (Restaurant Style)
Paneer Butter Masala (No onion, No Garlic)
Paneer Butter Masala
Paneer Gulshan
Paneer Kurma (without coconut)
Paneer Makhani
Paneer Makhanwala
Paneer Tawa Masala
Paneer Tikka Masala
Phalguni Dal
Pindi Channa/Chole
Rajma Masala
Shahi Paneer
Sirkewala Jhinga
Spring Onion Curry
Soya Chunks Kofta Curry
Soya Chunks & Mung Beans Sprouts Curry
Tawa Paneer Masala
Thakkali / Tomato Thokku
Vegetable Kofta Curry
Vegetarian Keema Matar (Minced Cauliflower & Peas Curry)

Deep Fried

Baked Cauliflorets
Baked Chick Peas / Garbanzo Beans
Beetroot Tikki
Cheesy Bread Cups (baked)
Chilli Garlic Potatoes with Noodles
Chinese Egg Noodles
Chinese Veg Noodles
Kara Pori
Masala Kara Pori (Beach Style)
Noodles in Tomato Sauce
Puli Aval
Rajma Tikkis / Red Kidney Beans Patties

Creamy Pumpkin Soup
Creamy Vegetable Soup
Sweet Corn Soup
Tomato Pasta Soup
Vegan Tomato Soup
Watermelon Gazpacho

Kadalai Paruppu / Channa Dal Sundal (Tangy Version)
Macaroni Pasta and Egg Salad
Mint Yogurt Dip
Pacha Payaru Sweet Sundal
Peanut (Verkadalai) Sundal
Rajma Sundal
Thenga Manga Pattani Sundal

For Neiveidhyams
7 cup Burfi / Cake
Akkaravadisal / Akkara Adisil
Aval Payasam
Chakkarai Pongal  (Traditional Method)
Coconut Burfi (in Microwave)
Kalkandu Pongal
Kozhukattai / Modakam (step by step)
Medhu Vadai / Ulundhu Vadai (Hotel Style)
Nei Appam
Paal Kozhukattai
Paal Payasam
Paneer Payasam
Paruppu Payasam
Pineapple Rava Kesari / Halwa
Semiya / Vermicelli Kesari
Semiya / Vermicelli Payasam (in Microwave)
Thiruvadirai Kali

For Festivals or Special Occasions

Besan Coconut Peda
Bread Jamoon
Carrot Halwa
Chocolate Almond Bark
Chocolate Fudge
Chocolate Halwa (in Microwave)
Chocolate Jujubes
Chocolate Truffles
Coconut Poli
Doodh Bopla Peta
French Apple Pie (with No Bake Pie Crust)
Gulab Jamoon
Javvarisi Payasam / Sago Kheer 
Kaaju Katli / Cashewnut Burfi
Kesar Sandesh
Komola Kheer (Orange Kheer)
Lavang Latika
Maa Ladoo / Pottukadalai Urundai
Maida Burfi / Maida Cake
Mango Kheer / Mambazha Payasam
Pori Urundai
No Bake / No Cook Valentine Sweethearts
Orange Chenna Payesh (in Microwave)
Paal Pongal
Puran Poli
Rava Ladoo
Rava Kesari
Sohan Halwa
Somaas / Somaasi
Spiced-up Carrot Sago Kheer
Thengai Arisi Payasam / Coconut Kheer
Vanilla Panna Cotta with Basil Seeds (sabja) 

Butter Murukku
Cashewnut Murukku
Ghee Murukku
Cornflakes Mixture
Ribbon Pakoda / Naadaa Kaaras
Ring Murukku
Spicy Diamond Cuts / Maida Khara Biscuits
Uppu Seedai

Black Grape Banana Smoothie
Cantaloupe Slush
Chikoo Milkshake
Chocolate Banana Milkshake
Coconut Strawberry Banana Smoothie
Grape Fizz
Grape Juice
Dry Fruits Milkshake
Homemade Strawberry Crush
Lassi / Sweet Lassi
Lychee / Litchi Sparkler
Mango Jal Jeera
Mango Julius
Mango Milkshake
Mango Lemonade
Mango Oatmeal Breakfast Smoothie
Oatmeal Banana Breakfast Smoothie
Oats spiced Buttermilk
Orange Papaya Passion
Papaya Iron Punch
Rose Milk
Spicy Masala ButterMilk
Strawberry Lemonade
Sweet Lime / Satthukudi / Mosambi Juice
Watermelon Cooler
Watermelon Agua Fresca
Watermelon Slushies
Yellow Watermelon Juice
Homemade Coriander Powder
Homemade Ginger Garlic Paste
Homemade Red Chilli Powder
Homemade Rice Flour for Bakshanams
How to make/set Thick Yogurt/Curd w/o culture from Scratch
Kozhukattai Flour / Homemade Rice Flour
Make Cake Flour
Make Kopra / Dry Coconut Flakes from Fresh Coconut
Make Instant Buttermilk
Rice Flour
Retain the basmati rice to remain separate even after cooking / Prevent the Basmati rice from becoming mushy after cooking
Sambar Powder
Sundried Tomatoes
How to Sprout Mung Beans / Lentils
Vegan Roasted Red Bell Pepper Sauce

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