Saturday, March 5, 2011

Jeeraga Rasam / Jeera Rasam

Jeeraga Rasam or Melagu Jeeraga Rasam is a rasam which we usually make on saturdays. This is very good for a cold and soothens the throat well. No Pizza or Pasta can ever match a meal of hot Melagu Jeeraga rasam served with hot rice and potato fry. 

Jeera - 1 spoon
Karivepilai / curry leaves - 5-6 leaves
Red chillies - 1 - 2
Melagu / pepper - 4 - 5
Tamarind - a big lemon sized
Rasam powder - 1 spoon
Toor Dal - 5 spoons
Hing / perungaayam - a generous pinch
Salt / mustard / ghee - as reqd

Method :
Keep aside half a spoon of toor dal and cook the remaining toor dal in pressure cooker.

Soak a spoon of jeera, half a spoon toor dal, curry leaves & red chilly in water for 10-15 minutes. Also wash & soak the tamarind in hot water for 10 minutes seperately. Grind together the soaked ingredients (Jeera, Dal, chilly, curry leaves & Tamarind) to a paste consistency. The Paste looks like this.

Then dilute the paste with water and filter the tamarind remains with hand if any.
Now add salt, hing, rasam powder and allow the mixture to boil once (Do not over boil when Jeera is added. Boiling Jeera for long time gives a medicinal taste to the liquid). You can also add some pepper powder at this stage to make it more spicy.

Now mash the cooked dal and add water and add it to the rasam. Again bring the mixure to a boil and put off the flame.
Tamper with ghee and mustard. Add fresh curry leaves on top.
Rasam is ready to be served hot.

Rajma Paneer

Rajma Paneer - A double Protein combo :)

I always used to cook Rajma in a typical manner. Though it is very healthy didnt seem so interesting to make it often. This time i had some paneer in my fridge and thought will add it to Rajma and make it in a different way. Came out well and people at home liked it :)

Ingredients :
Rajma / Red Kidney Beans - 200 Gms (soaked in water for atleast 8-10 hours)
Paneer / Cottage Cheese - 200 gms
Onion - 3
Tomato - 3
Ginger Garlic paste (optional) - little
Saunf - 1/2 spoon
cinnamon stick - 1 small piece
Garam Masala - 1 spoon
Oil / Salt / Chilly powder - as reqd

Method :
Soak Rajma for 10 hours. Cook for 2 - 3 whistles and keep it aside.
In a kadai heat oil and add saunf & cinnamon then add ginger garlic paste and saute till raw smell goes. Then add the onions and fry till onions turn color.
Next add tomatos, salt, chilly powder, Garam masala powder and cook well. Let the tomato and onion get well blended.
Now add the cooked Rajma and add water based on the consistency of the gravy. Let it cook for 5 - 6 minutes.
Then cut paneer into cubes and add to the gravy. Mix well and cook for another 5 - 6 minutes. You may add cornflour mixed with water if the gravy is not thick.
Rajma paneer is ready to be served with Roti / Puri

Palak Paneer / Spinach & Cottage Cheese gravy

Palak Paneer is a very healthy option for a side dish. It has all the goodness of iron & protein. Goes well with Roti, Puri, Pulav or even with hot plain rice.

Palak / Spinach -      1 - 2 Bunch
Paneer / Cottage Cheese - 200 - 250 gms
Onion - 3
Tomato - 3
ginger garlic paste - little
Saunf - 1/2 spoon
Garam Masala - 1 spoon
Chilly powder - 1/2 spoon
Salt - as reqd

Method :
Cook spinach and allow it to cool. Grind it to a smooth paste in a mixie. Keep aside.
In a kadai add oil. Add the saunf and then the ginger garlic paste and fry. Once done add the finely chopped onions and fry till the raw smell from the garlic is gone. Onion should be well fried.
Now add finely chopped tomatos and cook for few minutes. Then add garam masala, chilly powder & salt and cook for 5-6 minutes.
Next add the spinach paste and mix it well. Water may be added based on the consistency of the spinach paste. Allow it to get well blended and well cooked.
Finally cut paneer into small cubes of equal size and add to the boiling gravy. Mix and let it cook for 3 - 4 minutes.
Palak Paneer is ready.