Sodhi with Inji Pachadi

Sodhi is an exotic Sri Lankan stew prepared with lentils and vegetables cooked in coconut milk. Although sodhi is not a spicy curry it has grown popular among people living in & around Tirunelveli. Meals with sodhi is a lavish spread in our wedding feasts comprising creamy sodhi, pungent ginger chutney, spicy potato fries, crunchy appalam, scrumptious…

Paneer Dum Biryani

Biryani is a medley of rice, vegetables (or meat) & spices and is popular among Indians & other south Asians. Traditionally biryani is cooked over hot coal in a sealed cooking pot allowing the aroma of spices permeated into the vegetables & rice (this method of cooking in low heat is known as “Dum” process). But…

Pineapple Rasam

Hot, sweet & sour pineapple rasam can be reveled as a comforting soup on a rainy day. Usually south Indian rasam is prepared with tomato or lemon but pineapple works wonders with rasam as it enhances its taste and flavor. You may also refer my recipes for lemon rasam & rasa vadai. When we like…

Radish Sambar

Radish (mullangi) sambar tastes as delicious as shallot (chinna vengayam) sambar because both absorb the taste & flavor of all the spices used in sambar. Hence I like to savour mullangi sambar with any south Indian meal whether rice, idli or dosa. Mullangi sambar tastes great with aviyal and it goes well with any kootu or…

Peas Pulao

Peas pulao is a delicious and aromatic rice dish and can be prepared in a jiffy. Peas pulao can be served with any spicy vegetable gravy or dal and also be packed for children’s lunch. Time taken : 15 min Serves : 2 Ingredients: Basmati rice – ½ cup Water – 1 cup Fresh peas – ¼…

Omam Kuzhambu

Generally I prepare omam kuzhambu when we return home from a vacation, or after attending a wedding ceremony for few days. I make omam kuzhambu and serve with hot steaming rice & roasted papad (sutta appalam), when we crave for a home-cooked food that soothes our stomach. Health Benefits: Omam (ajwain / carom seeds /…

Aadi Perukku

Aadi Perukku is a festival of fertility that is being celebrated by women in south India for more than 500 years. It was mentioned in Sangam Tamil literature, Paripadal, written in the 14th century. I like to quote them here: “Women getting ready to bathe in the river urging their men to dress in festive…

Tamarind Rice

Puliyodarai, a traditional rice dish, stays good & tastes divine even if it is kept without being refrigerated for 3 or 4 days.  I heard that my grand mother along with her younger children used to travel in a cart to a nearby town for their Diwali shopping; she preferred to carry tamarind rice &…

Chitrannam

Chitrannam is a platter of different rice varieties prepared on an auspicious Aadiperukku day, a day that brings in prosperity. It is believed that whatever we do on that day would grow manifold, so farmers used to sow their seeds and others would like to venture into new business on this day. I prefer to…

Blackgram Rice with Sesame Chutney

Ulundham Paruppu Sadham (Black gram Rice) is a unique rice prepared by people in Tirunelveli, a southern town of Tamilnadu. Sesame chutney is similar to Mediterranean Tahini sauce and is an essential side served with black gram rice. We usually serve this nutritious meal to young girls during their cycle every month. Although we prepare this meal specially…

Seeraga Samba Biryani with Brinjal Thokku

Interestingly Indian Biryani & Italian Risotto share some similarities: Seeraga samba rice & arborio rice have been cooked al dente in both the recipes as they both are of same texture. Seeraga samba rice is a quintessential ingredient of biryani in south India as it has a wonderful flavor, it does not gather into thick lumps…

Spicy Vegetable Gravy

Spicy Vegetable Gravy is a chettinad style Masala Kootu that I prepared using snake gourd in this post. Masala kootu may be prepared with other vegetables like ash gourd (vellai poosani), pumpkin (manjal poosani), ridge gourd (peerkangai), bottle gourd (suraikai), chayote (chow-chow), cucumber (vellari), or cabbage (muttakose). Health Benefits: Snake gourds have cooling effects on our…

Pigeon Peas and Rice

Thuvaram paruppu sadham (rice with split pigeon peas) is a traditional one-pot meal popular in Tirunelveli. This flavorful rice is an easy-to-prepare meal itself and hence can be packed for children’s lunch box. This is one of our favorite lunch meals on a lazy weekend. It is so delightful when we pour coconut oil lavishly…

Yogurt Curry

Morkuzhambu is a traditional South Indian curry prepared using sour curd. Since sour curd is enriched with probiotic organism, this healthy curry can be served to everyone young or old. Usually mor-kuzhambu is served with plain rice or rice with mashed greens (kadaintha arai keerai). Morkuzhambu may be prepared with single vegetable like ash gourd (vellai…

Weekend Lunch

This is the meal I prepare for lunch usually on Saturdays. It can be prepared easily within an hour, if you plan in advance and make all ingredients available. Everybody including kids will surely relish this delicious lunch meal. I find tiffin sambar a great accompaniment for citrus rice; Citrus rice & curd rice taste…

Chayote Delight

Chow-chow kootu is a South Indian curry prepared with lentils & coconut masala. Chow-chow kootu is my husband’s favorite dish and hence I prepare this dish quite often. It goes well any kuzhambu or rasam except morkuzhambu. Health benefits of chayote: It is recommended for women to include chayote in their diet before and during…

Citrus Rice

Citrus boosts immunity, energy & mood and aids in detoxification & digestion. This was one of the reasons that lemon rice was traditionally prepared & packed for short travels. Citrus Rice is a healthy non-sticky easy-to-prepare rice dish and hence can be used for packing children’s lunch box also. Recently I bought unripe citrons (naarthai)…

Soy Biryani

Soy biryani is a delicious wholesome healthy meal and is usually served with refreshing raita. It is particularly felicitous for people who wants to make a transition into vegetarian diet as cooked soy chunks & meat share the same texture. Soy may be recommended to include in the diet of women over 40 as it contains…

Simply Delicious Meal

Paruppu sadham with karunai kizhangu masiyal & elumichai rasam is a simply delicious meal that can be prepared easily even when you feel lazy. Surprisingly your family will simply enjoy this meal and also they will ask you to repeat the same some time soon. Please click on the images below for their recipes.  …

Grandma’s One-pot Meal

Kootanchoru is a traditional one-pot meal served for lunch by my maternal grand mother whenever we gathered during vacation. This meal used to be prepared by her with locally grown vegetables like drumsticks, raw mango, jack fruit seeds, etc. and served with home-made fried appalams & vadagams. I, my siblings & my cousins used to…

Classic South Indian Meals

This delicious meal seems to be a very satisfying healthy complete meal that we all love to relish on a Sunday. First we pour sambar generously over rice and have them with aviyal & poriyal; next we drink payasam and finally we take curd rice along with vegetables in sambar. For children we also serve sambar…

Red Lentils Sambar

Traditionally sambar (for rice) is prepared using thuvaram paruppu (red gram/ toor dal), but here I have used masoor dal (red lentils) to prepare drumstick sambar mainly because it is a rich source of protein as it contains an important amino acid. Red lentils are preferred over other lentils in restaurants as it adds more viscosity…

Mixed Vegetables in Coconut Gravy

Any lunch meal in South India is incomplete without aviyal (Mixed Vegetables in Coconut Gravy). Most of the traditional Indian recipes use mixed grains, or mixed pulses, or mixed vegetables, or mixed fruits. Nowadays nutritionists recommend to include mixed vegetables/ pulses/ grains/ fruits in our diet as it prevents vitamin & mineral deficiency; hence it is…

Meals with No-tamarind Curry

Meals with no-tamarind curry is one of the traditional meals that we all relished as children. My mother used to prepare healthy yet delicious meal with home-grown vegetables. I still remember our house filled with mixed flavors of coconut oil, fresh vegetables & spices while preparing this flavorful meal.  In those days we never said…

Drumstick Leaves Sambar

Drumstick leaves (murungai keerai) sambar is a flavorful nutritious curry prepared without tamarind and hence it is popularly known as puli illa curry (no-tamarind curry) in Tirunelveli. It is usually served with rice, any poriyal or aviyal & roasted appalam. Health Benefits: Drumstick leaves are rich sources of iron. If this curry is taken frequently by…

Millet Payasam

Millet payasam is a scrumptious dessert that can be prepared easily. We can serve this guilt-free payasam to even diabetic (with reduced jaggery) as millets are of low glycemic index. Millet I used here is foxtail millet very much suitable for making desserts.You can refer the table below for their health benefits. Cooking Time: 40…

Carrot-peas Poriyal

An irresistible and colorful carrot-peas poriyal can be taken as a salad or as a side for rice. Nowadays kids are spending most of their time with mobile phones and other devices, we need to protect their eyes by including carrots in their diet everyday.  Carrots & peas compliment each other in all respects whether…

Mushroom Pepper Fry

Mushroom Pepper Fry is a healthy dish that can be prepared quickly & easily. Mushrooms are the only vegetables that are rich sources of protein. So vegetarians or vegans can include mushrooms in their diet for their protein requirements. Mushroom pepper fry can be served with rice or roti, or it can be stuffed in…

Broad Beans Poriyal

Avaraikkai poriyal (Broad beans poriyal) is a tasty healthy side dish that goes well with sambar, rasam or morkuzhambu.  Kids also like this vegetable mainly for its tasty beans. Health Benefits: Broad beans are rich in protein & fiber and good sources of vitamins & minerals. It also helps lower blood sugar & LDL (bad…