Snake gourd & Red lentil Kootu

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All my life I hated eating kootu though my mother never gave up trying to feed it to us. Then I got married and became fully incharge of the kitchen which is when I realised how easy and nutritious and tasty the kootu is. It has a beautiful blend of vegetables and lentils, not to forget the ever evolving spice blend and a crackling tadka to top it all. So I have earned my mother’s wrath by making kootu more often than she ever did.

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Serves 3-4

WHAT WE NEED

200 gms Snake gourd

1/4 cup Masoor dal / Red Lentils

2 tbsp Roasted gram

1 tsp Coriander seeds

1/2 tsp Cumin seeds

1-2 Dried Red chillies

2 tsp Coconut oil

1/2 tsp Mustard Seeds

1/2 tsp Bengal gram

1/2 tsp Urad dal

1 sprig Curry leaves

Salt

WHAT TO DO

  • Cook the lentils till it is mushy and can be mashed. If using a pressure cooker, add 3/4 cup of water and cook till 2-3 whistles
  • Chop the snake gourd into thin semi circular pieces and cook it in water for 8-10 minutes
  • Dry roast the roasted gram, coriander seeds, cumin seeds and red chillies individually for 1 minute each
  • Let cool and grind to a coarse powder
  • Add the snake gourd to the cooked lentils in a vessel and let it cook for 5 minutes
  • Add salt and the spice mix and simmer for 7-8 minutes
  • The water in the lentils and snake gourd should suffice. If t turns too thick then add water to dilute it
  • Take it off the heat
  • In a small pan, heat coconut oil and add mustard seeds
  • Once it splutters, add the Bengal gram and urad dal
  • When the lentils turn brown, chop and add the curry leaves
  • Pour the entire mix on to the lentil mix
  • Serve warm with rice and ghee
  • Enjoy!

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This is my post for the Blogging Marathon under the theme, ‘Indian Dishes’.

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Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM

Capsicum Rings

To continue my story about the Radio City contest – I was selected for the final round the requirement of which was that it had to be a rice dish and to be completed in 45 minutes.

I decided on capsicum rings with rice and vegetables stuffed in it since I did not want to go the mixed rice routine . Its easy and looks nice too! I called it ‘Ring-a Ring-a Rice. So though I did not win the prize, Iw as told my recipe would feature in their Radio City Cookbook which they will be publishing soon. So Yay to me!!!

INGREDIENTS

Rice                   1/4 cup

Capsicum, large  1

Onion                   1

Tomatoes             1

Garam Masala     1/4 tsp

Ajwain                  1/4 tsp

Green chilly         1

Oil                        2 tbsp

Salt                      to taste

DIRECTIONS

1. Cook the rice with little extra water than you usually add so that it becomes a little soggy.

2. Fry the onions and tomatoes in 1 1/2tsp oil along with the green chilly, ajwain and garam masala

3. Cut the capsicum into roundels / rings and apply little salt to the inner side of the capsicum and keep aside

4. Once the rice and masala mixture has cooled, mix both of them nicely so that the rice has completely taken the flavour of the masala

5. Heat a tava and add oil

6. Place the capsicum rings on the tava

7. Fill the rings with the rice mixture

8. Cook on both sides till golden brown

9. Serve warm

Capsicum Rings

NOTES

1. The filling can be a mix of different vegetables. If you are excluding rice then you need to add potatoes so that the rest of the vegetables can be bound together

2. If you are not adding rice, then paneer can also be added.

3. If you want to add cheese, then grate it on the capsicum after the cooking is complete and the gas is switched off. Leave it covered for a couple of minutes.

Happy Cooking

Oats and vegetable tikka

Did you know Radio City is organizing a cookery contest across the country in various apartment complexes. It held one in my apartment last Sunday. The process was that they would select three best dishes and those cooks needed to participate in the second round where they had to cook within 45 minutes and ingredients available and that one had to be a rice dish.

I had decided on my favorite banana bread. But as luck and the Bangalore Electricity Department would have it, the power went out as soon as I put the bread in the oven to bake. So I pulled it out and finished it off in the pressure cooker. But the end result, though tasty, did not seem fit for a contest. So, I decided on this simple and very nutritious recipe that I had come up with few days ago. And I did make it to the Top 3. Yay!

INGREDIENTS

Vegetables               1 Cup

(any combination of peas, cabbabge, cauliflower, carrot, baby corn, corn, broccoli)

Oats                          1/2 Cup

Oil                              2 tbsp

Garlic                         2 pods

Ajwain                       1/2 tsp

Garam Masala           1 tsp

Green Chilly               1

Red chilly powder      1/2 tsp

Coriander leaves        8-10

Salt                              to taste

DIRECTIONS

1. Cut all the vegetables, boil them till soft and set aside to cool

2. Fry chopped onions, garlic and green chilly in 2 tsp oil

3. Add the onions to the vegetables and grind them into a coarse paste adding minimal water.

3. Take oats in a bowl and add ajwain, garam masala, red chilly powder, coriander leaves and salt

4. Add the vegetables and mix well to form a dough

5. Make lemon sized balls and flatten it

6. Heat a tava and add oil

7. Fry the tikkas on the tava till golden brown on both sides.

Oats Veg roll cook

8. Serve with ketchup or coriander chutney

Oats Veg Roll

NOTES

1. You can add potatoes also to the vegetables. I like to keep them as healthy as possible and so do not add them

2. If you have added too much water while grinding the vegetables and the mix does not reach a dough like consistency despite the oats then add 1 or 2 spoons of chickpea flour / besan. Again, this is not very healthy and so try to limit the water while grinding

3. If you are adding besan, then add it in small quantities till you reach the required consistency. Too much besan suppresses the taste of the vegetables and masala