Friday, December 26, 2014

Dil Leaves - Sweet Potato Palya (Dry Curry ) & Samosa

Palya (Kannada language) is a dry curry and we can prepare palya with almost all vegetables. It is one of the side dish and goes well with plain rice, chapatis, roti and poori. I just tried Dil leaves- sweet potato palya as I always do a bit different from the normal. Combination of dil leaves and sweet potato goes very well. A bit of sweetness from sweet potato and aroma from dil leaves makes the dish really yummy.

I prepared Samosas using the same palya. Used 2 cups of wheat flour and 1 cup of maida for the outer layer. Indeed Samosa came out very well and no need to say that we all enjoyed eating and eating these Samosas
I have not used onions or garlic but there is always an option you can add onion & garlic if you wish to.

Things Needed : Dil Leaves - Sweet Potato Palya .(Dry curry)

Sweet Potatoes : 5 to 6
Dil leaves : 1 Bundle
Green chilly : 2 to 3
Ginger : grated : 1 Tea spoon ( a small piece )
Garam Masala powder : 1/2 Tea spoon
Mustard seeds : 1/2 Tea spoon
Jeera : 1/2 Tea spoon
Curry leaves : 6 to 8
Coriander leaves : 2 Table spoons
Salt : to Taste
Oil :1 Table spoon

Method : 

1. Wash and cut dil leaves. Remove the outer skin of sweet potato and cut them into small.
2. Wash and cut green chilly, grate ginger and keep it aside.
3. Keep a pan on the fire and heat. Add  1 Table spoon of oil and mustard seeds. Let the mustard seeds splutter.

 4. Add jeera and fry for 10 seconds. Add dil leaves and cut sweet potato and fry for 1 minutes.

5. Add little (1/4 cup or less) water and cook on low flame. Let the vegetables cook. (Do not over cook).

6. Mix it nicely and add grated ginger, garam masala  and cut green chilly. Mix it well.
7. Let all the moisture disappear. Add little turmeric and required salt. Mix it well.
8. Add coriander leaves and mix it well and put the ready palya to a serving bowl.

Note : 

Do not over cook or do not add more watery. The taste differ. You can also add cut onions to this Curry. Adding less oil is always a heathy  ppoint. You can also add grated coconut to this curry. ( I did not add coconut ). You can also add little red chilly powder to make the palya little spicy.
Time : 15 Minutes.
Serves : 4 to 5

Dil Leaves - Sweet Potato Samosa

Things Needed : 

Dil leaves - Sweet Potato curry : 2 Cups
Wheat Flour : 2 cups.
Maida (All purpose flour) : 1 Cup
Oil : 2 cups
Ghee : 1 Table spoon
Salt : to taste
Jeera : 1/2 Tea spoon

Method :

1. Dry roast wheat flour and maida separately for 2 to 3 minutes each. Allow them to cool.

 2. Put roasted flours in a big pan or bowl and add a spoon of ghee and mix it well.

3. Add water ( little by little ) and prepare the thick dough.
4, Divide the dough in to small portions and turn the small portion in to round.

5. Dip each ball before you roll and flatten it with a chapati roller. Cut the rolled chapati in to two portions.
6. Take one cut flattened chapati and fill Dil leaves - Sweet potato palya and press it nicely and prepare samosas.

7. Keep a frying pan and put oil. Heat oil and fry Samosas one by one on low flame till they turn crispy.

 Fry on both sides til brown and remove from the pan. Place it on kitchen tissue. It helps to absorbs extra oil.

 8. Repeat the same with remaining dough and prepare samosas.
9. Serve with any type of chutney or ketch up.
10. We had this samosa with green and sweet chutney and coconut chutney.

. We also had this Samossa with a cup of Curd (Yogurt ).

Note : 

Do not prepare the dough too soft. It will absorb more oil. Fry them on low flame to get the crispness.
Use of Maida instead of wheat is optional. I just tried with wheat and it was good . Use of more vegetables like carrot, peas and beans also can be used along with sweet potatoes.Do not roll the dough too thin or too thick. Do not use stale palya. It should be fresh.
Time :  40 Minutes
15 to 16 Samosas can be prepared.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Bottle Gourd - Carrot - Gooseberry Curry

Bottle Gourd- Carrot - Gooseberry curry is a gravy dish. It is very easy to prepare. We can eat this curry with chapati, rice, dosa, poori, roti and idli. Using goose berry in Indian curries are usual. We can prepare Tambuli ( Butter milk mixed curry), chutney, pickles. You can even grate gooseberry and top  up with salads.

Lets see some benefits of eating Gooseberry in our diet.
Indian Gooseberry is also known as Amla. It is rich in Vitamin C. Gooseberry helps to absorption of food. balances stomach acid. fortifies the liver, nourishes the brain and mental functioning. It also supports the heart. It strengthens the lungs. It enhances the fertility, helps the urinary system and increases skin health. It acts as a body coolant and flushes out toxins. It strengthens eyes. It act as an antioxidant.It is good for people who suffer from diabetic.
I have not used either onions or garlic in this curry. 
Here is a recipe of Bottle gourd- Carrot -Gooseberry Curry, it is prepared using some spices which are used daily and you can give a try and the whole family will surely enjoy having this curry.

Things Needed :

Moong Dal : 1/2 Cup
Bottle gourd : 2 Cups
Carrots : 2
Goose berry : 2
Coconut : 1 Cup. ( 3 to 4 Table spoons)
Red Chilly : 4 to 5
Channa dal : 1 Table spoon
Methi (Fenugrik seeds) : 1/4 Tea spoon
Pepper Pods : 5 to 6
Jeera : 1/2 Tea spoon
Tamarind : a marble size
Salt : to taste
Oil :  2 Tea spoon
Mustard Seeds : 1/2 Tea spoon
Urid Dal : 1/2 Tea spoon
Curry Leaves : 6 to 8
Ingh : Asfoetida : a pinch

Method :

1. Wash and remove the outer skin of bottle gourd and carrot (scrape out the layer of carrot) and cut them in to small and cook till soft.
2. Wash moong dal and pressure cook for 5 minutes. Leave it for cooling.

3. Grate coconut and Grate Gooseberry and keep aside.

4.Keep a small pan on a fire and heat. Put a spoon of oil and fry channa dal and methi seeds til they turn slightly red. (fry on low flame).
5. Add red chilly, 5 to 6 curry leaves, ingh and pepper pods and fry for 30 seconds. Put off the fire and add jeera.and coconut. Let the fried mixture cool down. 
 6. Grind fried mixture and tamarind along with coconut with little water. ( nice paste consistency)
7. Keep a bigger pan on the fire and put  cooked carrots- bottle gourd, cooked moong dal and ground mixture.

8. Add salt and required water and mix it well and cook for 3 to 4 minutes.Let it be bit thick. Switch off the gas.
9. Shift cooked curry to a serving dish. Add grated Gooseberry and mix it nicely.
10. Fry mustard, urid dal in a spoon of oil and add curry leaves and a pinch of ingh. Add this fried mixture to the curry and serve.

Note :

Vegetables must be cooked till soft but do not over cook. Adding toor dal instead of moong dal is optional. Normally said that moong is more healthier than toor dal. Adding more or less chilly is also optional. You can also use some green chilly to make it more spicy. Adding onions or garlic is optional. You can fry them along with mustard fry and mix it with curry.
Time :    30 minutes
 Serves : 4 to 5

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Flax seed -Uchellu - Stuffed Brinjal

Flax seed is Agase Beeja ( Kannada Language), Uchhellu  or Huchellu ( Kannada Language) is Niger seeds. Niger seeds are bit different from sesame seeds but having somewhat same aroma of sesame seeds. I do come across some crazy ideas to prepare some of our dishes with little twist. I am using flax seeds for Chutney Pudi (Chutney Powder), Rasam and chutneys also. Even Uchhellu (Niger seeds) also can be used for Chutney powder and chutneys. When you mix this with Tamarind rice Uchhellu gives a good aroma and taste. So I thought of combining these two and prepare our stuffed brinjal (North Canara Special). I also used Puliyogre gojju instead of plain tamarind to give little more spicy touch to the dish. Stuffed Brinjal dish was very nice with spicy taste, flax seeds richness and uchhellu aroma.

 Uchhellu is known as Karale in Hindi, Khurasani in Marathi and Punjabi, Sorguja or sorguza in Assamese and Bengali. It is Huchellu or Karelle in Kannada and Payellu in Tamil.

Lets see some benefits of Huchellu or Uchellu and Flax Seeds.
They are rich in calcium, magnesium and other minerals. They also help us to lower cholesterol levels in the blood. Traditionally Uchellu oil is used as a massage oil and its properties offer relief for aches,pains, and skin problems.

Flax seeds are source of healthy fat, antioxidants and full of fiber. It can also help to lower the risk of diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
Flax seeds - Uchhellu Stuffed Brinjal can be eaten with plain rice, chapati, roti, poori. 
No onions or garlic is used in this Flax seed - Uchhellu Stuffed Brinjal dish. ( It is optional).

Things Needed : 

Brinjal : Small, tender and round : - 6 to 8
Flax Seeds :  2 Table Spoons
Uchhellu (Niger Seeds) : 1 Table Spoon.
Tamarind Pulp : 2 Table spoons' ( or You can use M.T.R. or Maiaya;s Puliyogre Powder).
Rasam Powder : 2 Table spoons
Coconut : 3 Table spoons
Salt : To Taste
Jaggery : 2 Table spoons
Curry Leaves : 6 to 8
Oil : 2 Table spoons
Mustard seeds : 1/2 Tea spoon
Methi (Fenugrik ) Seeds : 1/4 Tea spoon
Jeera : 1/2 Tea spoon
Ingh : a pinch

Method :

1. Wash and cut brinjal in to 4 to 6 until the end of the brinjal. Leave it in the water.

2. Keep a pan on the fire and heat. Dry roast flax seeds , Uchhellu on low flame. Leave it for cooling.
3.Add coconut and rasam powder. mix it well.

 4. Dry grind  roasted seeds and coconut. Remove from the pan and add salt.

5.Ad little water and mix the mixture nicely and fill this mixture to a cut brinjal. ( If you are using tamarind pulp add little more water to the ground spice and mix it well).

 6.Arrange all these stuffed brinjals in a plate.

 7. Now keep a big pan on the fire and add oil. Heat oil and put mustard seeds, methi seeds. Let the mustard seeds splutter.

8. Add jeera and ingh. Add curry leaves. Now arrange stuffed brinjals in the pan.

9. Put jaggery and remaining ground mixture on the top of brinjal and mix it slowly.

10. Add little water, a pinch of turmeri powder and cover the dish and cook for 3 to 4 minutes on medium flame.

 11. Turn the other side slowly and cook till they are soft. Add salt if required.

12. Now insert the edge of a knife or spoon to know that brinjal is cooked nicely. ( if not put little more water and cook for 2 more minutes). Cook till all the water disappear. ( It should turn thick).

13. Shift Cooked Brinjal to a serving bowl.
14. Serve with the main dish you have prepared. 


You can use more spices ( chilly powder or cut green chilly) if you like the dish to be spicy.
I have added Maiyya's puliyogre powder instead of  tamarind pulp and Maiyya's  rasam powder.
You can also use more jaggery if like the dish to be sweet and spicy.
You can also add lemon juice ( 1/2 lemon extract) at the end.
You can fry 2 table spoons of coriander seeds, 1/4 spoon of methi seeds, 1/4 spoon of jeera and 6 to 8 red chillies and powder it to get rasam powder.
Onions and garlic also can be fried just before adding brinjal ( mustard splutter) and fry it nicely and then add brinjal and cook. (optional).
Time : 30 Minutes
Serves :  4 to 5

Mixed Dal & Amaranth leaves Curry./ ಮಿಶ್ರ ಬೇಳೆ - ಹರಿವೆ ಸೊಪ್ಪಿನ ತೊವ್ವೆ

Dals are always protein rich. Its good for vegetarians to get proteins. Proteins help us get the bones strong. Here is a recipe which I have...


My name is Nalini Somayaji. Teaching is my profession. Cooking is my passion. Reading, travelling, visiting new places, having fun with kids are some of the hobbies I can say. My recipes are Healthy, quick, easy and simple. Grown up being a traditional family member I love and respect Indian culture and traditions. Love classical dance and music.
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