Modhagam

This is my first post in the second year of blogging! On this first anniversary I thank WordPress team for their fantastic support, readers & fellow bloggers for their amazing encouragement and my family, relatives & friends for their kind cooperation, invaluable assistance & honest reviews. Today I thank Lord Ganesh by posting the most…

Kummiyanam

Kummiyanam is a nutritious dessert made of rice, assorted legumes & palm jaggery prepared by the people in Tirunelveli, Nagerkoil, or Kanyakumari. It is offered to the lamented souls while remembering them in Aadi month (a Tamil calendar month usually falls between 15th of July & 15th of August). Likewise, I heard Japanese visiting cemeteries during…

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 &…

Sweet Pongal

Preparing Sweet Pongal used to be a difficult task for me when I started cooking, it took really a long time to meet my expectation (similar to the one that served in temples!). So here is my recipe that I learnt after several futile attempts; please note that the important steps that help perfecting it…

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…

Sacred Fruit Salad

Panchamirtham is a sacred fruit salad that we offer to God and is also used for abishegam (bathing deities) in temples. The famous Palani panchamirtham made using bananas that are exclusively grown near Palani hills is offered to Lord Muruga in Palani temple. You can check this video to see how panchamirtham abishegam is performed…

Idli Podi

Idli milagai podi is an indispensable condiment in every south Indian’s pantry.  I do not like to use store-bought idli podi as it is nicely powdered; I find idli podi satisfying only when I feel the coarse grits on my tongue. We use roasted rice for its sandy texture; roasted asafoetida & raw garlic for…

Ayurvedic Lemonade

Panakam is a traditional lemonade that we offer to God. Generally we end our fasting by drinking panakam as it helps to purify, energise & hydrate our body.          My grand father’s sister, a hardcore devotee of Lord Muruga, never missed to observe fasting on all Sashti days (once in every fortnight)…

Buttermilk & Lassi

Spicy buttermilk is a traditional south Indian drink usually served after taking heavy meal to improve the digestion. Buttermilk with jeera powder or chaat masala is popular in other parts of India. Lassi is a sweetened flavored creamier buttermilk served chilled as dessert in India. Generally buttermilk is kept in earthenware (mud pots) few hours…

Blackgram Rice with Sesame Chutney

Ulundham Paruppu Sadham (Black gram Rice) is a very unique rice prepared in almost every household 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…

Pounded Palmyra Sprout

Idicha panang kizhangu (pounded Palmyra sprout) is a traditional gluten-free fiber-rich snack that we relished during our childhood days. I still remember those sprouts pounded by my paternal grand mother; she used to pound them with great finesse that each & every bits were of same size! In those days our house was filled with…

Sweet Poha

Aval puttu (sweet poha) is a traditional sweet usually prepared on Tamil New Year day. It tastes scrumptious when sprinkled over a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Beaten rice is an easily digestible form of rice with less gluten. Please check the recipe for aval puttu as below: Time Taken: 30 min Serves : 3 Ingredients: Thick…

Savory Doughnuts

Ulundha vadai aka medhu vadai is a gluten-free South Indian savoury donut prepared using black lentils dough. Any feast or festival in South India is incomplete without making ulundha vadai; this traditional vadai is prepared for all special occasions or even on a normal day as an evening snack. Ulundha vadai can be served as…

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…

Shallot Chutney

Chinna vengaya chutney is a spicy tasty healthy traditional chutney mainly prepared for young girls & pregnant women. Health Benefits: Shallots contain flavonoids that have powerful antioxidant properties; shallots also useful for improving emotional health & heart health. Other ingredients in this chutney are curry leaves & black grams; curry leaves are rich sources of…

Mango Jam

Mango jam or maangai pachadi is a sweet sour & spicy jam prepared with semi-ripe mangoes. It tastes heavenly when a scoop of vanilla ice cream is glazed with this scrumptious mango jam. Mangoes contain dietary fiber, vitamin A & vitamin C; they also contain antioxidants that fight against free radicals. Please check this slideshow to…

Banana Flower Patties

Vazhaipoo Vadai or banana flower patties are gluten-free snacks prepared with yellow peas and banana flowers. These irresistible patties have crispy skin mainly because of yellow peas. Health benefits of banana flower: Banana flowers have flavor similar to that of artichokes. Banana flowers can be included in our diet as banana flower stir-fry (poriyal), coconut…

Tamarind Curry

Puli Kuzhambu or Tamarind Curry is a spicy tangy traditional curry prepared with garlic & shallots. Garlic & shallots are considered to be very good for heart health as they reduce hypertension and control cholesterol. Also they help in removing toxins from our system. Besides garlic has antibacterial, antiviral & antifungal properties too. You can…

Ebony Sweetmeat

Ulundhangkali is a soft silky delicious ebony sweet; it is a traditional south Indian sweetmeat prepared mainly for teenage girls & pregnant women. Ulundhu kali is believed to strengthen uterus & bones and it is our customary to serve this kali to a girl when she attains her puberty. Traditional Breakfast with Kali This is…

Coriander Seeds Chutney

I love to use coriander seeds roasted as it is so aromatic that it elevates flavor of any dish. As per Ayurveda, an ancient Indian system of medicine, this spice has many healing powers; particularly it aids in digestion, stimulates appetite, prevents food poisoning and lowers blood sugar. Coriander seeds chutney is very effective in…

Simple Curd Rice

Curd rice is a simple traditional probiotic meal. I make sure to serve curd rice to my family specially when someone taking a course of antibiotics; when antibiotics kill both good & bad bacteria, probiotics help to replace good bacteria. Serving Curd Rice: Curd rice tastes best with udaitha kadalai thuvaiyal. It also goes well with…

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…

Golden Milk with Pepper

I remember drinking Golden Milk for the first time when I was about 5 years old. I was woken up from sleep by mother, she held a glass of golden milk near my mouth and made me to empty the glass. Although I was so drowsy, I still remember sweet ‘n’ spicy warm milk soothing…

Breakfast with Eggplant Gothsu

Eggplant (brinjal) gothsu is one of our favourite accompaniments for idli & dosa and I usually prepare this for breakfasts on Sundays. It is a very unique gothsu prepared by people living in Tirunelveli and is also known as kathrikai kichadi.  Similarly you can make gothsu using yellow pumpkin (poosani) or ridge gourd (peerk) also,…

Ginger Jam

Ginger jam is an easy to prepare digestive jam. A teaspoon of ginger jam  taken in the morning in an empty stomach helps improve digestion. It is mainly beneficial for children to increase their appetite. Coriander seeds, ginger & raisins all have medicinal benefits of balancing body temperature. Please check below my grandmother’s recipe for…

Adai Avial (Mixed Lentils Dosa with Mixed Veg Curry)

Adai (Mixed lentils dosa) is a protein rich crepe prepared by mixing small amounts of various lentils. It is found that the mixture of lentils provides a complete source of amino acids similar to animal sources of proteins. You may check this link from American Institute for Cancer Research to know more about nutritional benefits of lentils: http://www.aicr.org/foods-that-fight-cancer/legumes.html…

Mixed Vegetables in Coconut Gravy

Avial (Mixed Vegetables in Coconut Gravy) is one of the most popular side dishes served in almost every wedding lunch in South India.  We also prepare this at home for all the festivals, feasts, or functions.Most of the traditional Indian recipes use mixed grains, or mixed pulses, or mixed vegetables, or mixed fruits. Nowadays nutritionists…

Meals with No-tamarind Curry

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

Millet Payasam

Millet payasam is a dessert that you can take with no guilt as it is gluten free; I have used coconut paste instead of coconut milk so that it contains less fat. Everybody will surely love this crunchy yummy flavorful payasam. The millet I used here is foxtail millet very much suitable for making desserts….

Millet Pongal

Breakfast with millet pongal is an ideal way to start a day. It can be just served with simple coconut chutney and no need to prepare sambar also as an accompaniment. So your breakfast can be made quickly & easily. Millets I used here is varagu or kodo millet; you can try the same with…

Coconut Chutney

Coconut chutney is a commonly prepared accompaniment in every South Indian household. It can be served with idli, dosa, uthappam, pongal, kichadi, vadai or bajji. You can check the restaurant style coconut chutney recipe as below: Time Taken : 3 min Ingredients: Coconut pieces – 9 Nos. (each 1 inch) Green chillies – 2 Nos. Roasted…

Millet Porridge

Millet porridge is the best breakfast that can be taken on a scorching sunny day. It keeps us cool,  fresh & energetic all through the day. It is so filling that you don’t require anything till lunch. The millet I used here is pearl millet or kambu. Pearl millet is a flavorful protein-rich millet. Please…