Monday, February 27, 2012

Kathal Chana Sabzi / Raw Jackfruit curry with Green horsegrams

Raw jackfruit is one of my favorite vegetables. Ever since I stumbled upon this veggie at the local asian grocery store, I have been making curries of this veggie every week. It is very high in fibre content and very good for the digestive system. I have posted a kathal sabzi in my blog earlier. You can refer to that recipe without the chana. In this recipe, I am adding the chana and the masala is also going to be different. It tastes best when eaten with hot boiled Kerala Red Rice or with any plain white rice.


Green Chana - 1 cup
Raw Jackfruit - 1 can (yields about 2 cups)
Freshly grated coconut - 1/2 cup
Dry red chillies - 4-5
Tamarind pulp - 1 1/2 tbsp
Turmeric powder - 1 tsp
Red chilli powder - 1 tsp (optional)

For Tempering and Seasoning:

Coconut oil - 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Asafoetida - a pinch
Curry leaves - A few
Chana Dal - 1 tsp
Urad Dal - 1 tsp
Cilantro - For Garnishing
Salt - To taste


  • Soak the green chana / horsegram for about 3-4 hours until they double up in volume.
  • Rinse the canned raw jackfruit well and cut it into small bite sized pieces.

  • In a blender, grind the freshly grated coconut with the dry red chillies and make a paste.
  • Pressure cook the soaked chana and the jackfruit for upto 3 whistles.
  • In a pan, add the coconut oil and temper it with mustard seeds, chana dal, urad dal, asafoetida and curry leaves.
  • To this add the cooked chana and jackfruit.

  • Then add salt, turmeric powder and red chili powder.
  • Cook for 5-7 minutes. Then add the ground paste and tamarind pulp and cook for another 7-8 minutes until the raw smell leaves.

  • Garnish it with cilantro and serve it hot with Kerala Red Rice or any other cooked white rice. Enjoy!!

  • Adding red chilli powder is optional. I like additional spice and so added it. You can do with the ground red chillies.
  • You can use fresh raw jackfruit too. We do not get fresh ones here and hence we use canned.
  • You can use brown chana if you prefer that to the green one.
  • Coconut oil tastes best for this dish. You can substitute it with olive oil or canola oil as per your preference.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Avacado and Spinach Salad

Eating healthy is very important. In the present day scenario, everyone is leading a very busy and a fast life. It has become a burden for many to cook, go to work and manage home well. Salads come in handy in similar situations. Chop a couple of fresh veggies, empty a pack of store bought greens and toss it well with a few other ingredients from the pantry. Trust me, you will end up with a delicious and a wholesome dish that will satisfy your appetite.

Avacadoes are one of my favorite fruit and I live to have it as a milkshake and enjoy eating it with salads. The fruit is very buttery and smooth. The fruit can turn brown on exposure to air due to oxidation. To prevent this just coat with with lime juice and I will stay fresh. It has a lot of health benefits associated with it and considered to be very healthy (though it is high in its fat content).

Here is the recipe to a healthy and a delicious salad.

(Serves 2)
Avacado - 1 Ripe
Baby spinach - Cleaned,washed and chopped - 2 cups
Spring onions - 4 stalks
Red onion - Medium sized -1
Ripe tomatoes - medium sized - 2
Salt - To taste
Lime/Lemon juice - from 1large lime/lemon
Chat masala - 1/4th of a tsp
Ground black Pepper - 1/4th of a tsp


  • In a large bowl add the chopped spinach, red onions, tomatoes and spring onions.

  • Then add ground black pepper, chat masala, salt and lime juice.
  • Toss the salad and serve it with avacadoes.
  • Enjoy the salad.

  • You can use cherry tomatoes if you like.
  • You can use spring mix, arugula or watercress instead of spinach or with spinach.
  • You can prefer to add or skip chat masala.
  • Use raw veggies of your choice to make the salad more interesting.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Venn Pongal

Its been a while since I cooked patiently, clicking away pictures and doing things at leisure. Just got back from a beautiful short vacation and still in the holiday mood. DH wanted to have vathakuzhambu. Luckily had butternut squash at home and made it in a jiffy. The best complement to vathakuzhambu couldn't be better than a plate of hot venn pongal. Realized quite late that I had not posted pongal on the blog and was just in time to click a couple of pictures for the same.

(Serves 2)

Moong dal - Split - 3 tbsp
Rice - 1 cup
Black peppercorns - 1 tbsp
Crushed black pepper - 1/2 tsp
Grated ginger - 1 tsp
Curry leaves - A few
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Green chillies - A couple (optional)
Butter / Ghee - 1 tbsp
Salt - To taste


  • In a pressure cooker or a pressure pan, heat the butter / ghee and once it gets hot add cumin seeds, black peppercorns, grated ginger , curry leaves, green chillies, and crushed black pepper. Then add the moong dal and rice and roast all the ingredients well on medium flame for 3-4 minutes.

  • Then add water and salt and pressure cook for 3 whistles.

  • Pongal would have cooked well  after 3 whistles. You can adjust the proportion of water depending on whether you prefer it to be semi-solid or solid.

  • Enjoy the hot and tasty pongal.

  • Adding green chillies is optional. If you prefer spicy pongal you can add it or you can omit it.
  • Addition of crushed red pepper gives it a real pepper taste. You can add it according to your preference.
  • You can cube up ginger and add or you can julienne it. Grated ginger blends well with rice and will not be felt while eating.