Monday, 26 August 2013

Slicing Tomatoes into small pieces


Slicing Tomatoes into small pieces






One more cut cross-wise will do all that, shown below:



Rangarajan Ramaswamy Bangalore 26.08.2013



Sunday, 28 July 2013

Hinglish Breakfast

Hinglish Breakfast


The left over vegetables with the total quantity available for cooking for 2 persons. There is no list of ingredients. 


Cut the available vegetables into small pieces and organise them in order. Enjoy the arrangement.



Mix all the cut pieces together and you will have an idea of the quantity available for cooking from the left over vegetables. 


By the usual method indicated in my earlier posts, cook the vegetables properly keeping the ingredients mix in mind. Cooking is over.


Now get 2 loaves of un-sliced bread from the bakery and make 4 pieces out of the 2 loaves.  


Slice about 1/2 inch from the top of each portion to be used as a lid. Now scoop out the middle portion of the remaining part using knife or by any other means and carve out a portion looking like a well. It is this well which will be used for stuffing the left over cooked vegetables. Now you have a well with a lid. Enjoy your carving for a while.


Use a spatula from the cooked stuffing and transfer it inside the well. Do not ram the stuffing, as it may open out from the thin wall. Fill the well to the brim and flatten the top of the stuffing with the spatula. You can smear the left over tomato sauce for the lid to cover the well. 




I could get 3 wells filled with the available left over cooked vegetables and I have a ray of pride in making use of the small one off quantities of the vegetables. You can add warm milk to the scooped portion without added sugar and offer to the kids. Do not mix the scooped portion with the stuffing.

The exclusive moment to enjoy the dish with the satisfaction that nothing has been wasted. 




Vazai Kai Podimas

Vazhai Kai Podimas


Select two pieces of Vazhai Kai of green colour and with some portion with a brownish tinge. The brownish tinge indicates the Vazhai Kai is matured enough.



Ingredients for the Podimas. The grated Coconut, Lemon juice and Ginger, add to the taste.


These ingredients are used for sautéing. Cut all the ingredients into small, uniform pieces. I normally use extra-virgin-olive-oil and Sundrop Sunflower oil in the ratio 1:3.


Cook the 2 pieces of Vazhai Kai in the pressure cooker. Wait only for one whistle and switch off the heat. This will prevent the Vazhai Kai from overcooking and soggy.Spare a minimum of 15 minutes to cool off.



When the Vazhai Kai is still warm, strip off the outer skin with a flat knife and the skin will come out nice and smooth. This is how the Vazhai kai look after peeling off the skin. 


Now you can grate the Vazhai Kai in a grater. You should select the course side with larger holes. Have a look at the consistency of the grated Vazhai Kai. Always use stainless steel grater. Otherwise the Podimas will quickly turn black. 


Add 2 table spoon of oil in a kadai. While on heat, add mustard seeds and when the cracking stops, add udad dahl, chena dahl , Curry leaves, ginger, Chillies, Asafoetida. At the end add the grated Vazhai Kai and grated coconut. Add salt, Turmeric and just turn the podimas a couple of times without exerting any pressure. You can add maximum ½ lemon Juice if you like for the 2 vazhai kai. The Podimas goes well as a side dish with rice, sambar and rasam. It also goes well with anybody born on Mother Earth without any side dish. If you minimise the chillies, the children and the guests alike will make frequent visits to the kitchen. So, make more than 2 Vazhai kai, maintaining proportions. Best wishes

Ingredients
Vazhai Kai
Vazhaikai Podimas

Raw Banana
2 Nos
Coconut gratings
1/4 cup
Ginger
chopped
Lemon
1/2 piece
Salt
to taste

Podimas

seasoning

Cooking Oil
3 teaspoon
Mustard
1 tea spoon
Udad dahl
10 to 12 Round
Chena Dahl
10 to 12 split
Turmeric
1/2 cup
Green Chilli
1 No
Red Dried Chilli
1 No
Curry Leaves
8 to 10
Coriander Leaves
Finely chopped
Click any image with Left Mouse Key to see all the enlarged images. 




Rangarajan Bangalore 28.07.2013 03:00 pm

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Alu Tomato Stuffing


Alu Tomato Stuffing

This is supplementary to my earlier post “Alu Simla Mirch Stuffing” . Many of my friends have told me to develop a step by step procedure to make Alu_Tomato Stuffing , as they are finding it difficult to retain the shape of tomato from collapsing. Here is my methodology. I do hope you enjoy the steps. 

Ingredients

Qty


Alu / Potato
2
Pieces
Tomato - Big Selected
5
Nos
Onion
1

No
Carrot
1
Piece
Simla Mirch
1
Piece
Green Chilli
2
Nos
Coriander Leaves



Chopped

Step 1 :
Select  5 good semi ripe tomatoes free from depressions and which can be retained in a perforated steel container, as shown.



Step 2 :           Keep the ingredients ready and handy.

Step 3 :
Finely cut the potato into small pieces and store it in water.


Step 4 :
Cook the ingredients and the potato separately in the usual method and keep it ready. Make sure that there is no water in the potato stuffing and allow it to cool.

Step 5 :
Now with a sharp knife slice each tomato near the top till the knife reaches the wall thickness.  Go a little more deep and cut upto the middle of the tomato thickness . The top portion will now open out like a door . Use can use the melon scooper as shown in the image. You can scoop out the centre portion and make each tomato hollow as shown. You can use a small square bowl containing cooking oil with added salt.  The oil_salt mixture is to be smeared on the outside and inside of the tomato for better taste.



Step 6 :
Now fill up the hollow portion of each tomato with the stuffing. When one tomato is removed , others may tend to cave in. To prevent that , keep one extra raw tomato in place as a dummy. You will like this idea.

Step 7.
Cook the tomato stuffing in a pressure cooker without weight  and wait for 10 minutes . You can allow the stuffing to cool for 15 more minutes.  


Enjoy as a side dish with rotis or chapattis. 


Rangarajan Ramaswamy Bangalore 16062013 05:00 pm



Tuesday, 16 April 2013

How to cut mangoes and serve


Summer special 


There are many kids who wait for the examinations to end  for the year and eagerly wait for the mango season to enjoy. I have spent all my childhood days in Madras ( Now Chennai ). My father had a fancy for cutting mangoes , which I have improvised in later years . I am detailing the art of mango criss-cross cutting with minimum wastage & maximum enjoyment with added fun , which is the theme of this post.  As you will see at the end , excepting the seed and the end part of the mango , everything is utilised .

I am using for this post , the Mango Alphonso , available in plenty in Maharashtra.

Alphonso : This is the leading commercial variety of Maharashtra state and one of the choicest varieties of the country. This variety is known by different names in different regions, viz. Badami, Gundu, Khader, Appas, Happus and Kagdi Happus. The fruit of this variety is medium in size, ovate oblique in shape and orange yellow in colour. The fruit quality is excellent and keeping quality is good. It has been found good for canning purpose. It is a mid season variety.

Final Product : 



Step 1:
Choose good quality Alphonso mangoes . The fruits should not be soft.

Step 2:
Make 3 slices of each mango as shown with a stainless steel knife. Do not use High Carbon Steel knives as they will react with the mango juice. 

Step 3:
Make straight horizontal cuts with a sharp knife . Please ensure that the knife touches the bottom but not touch the skin at intervals of 3 to 4 mm. Do not be in a hurry till you complete all the lines.  Repeat this procedure till all the four slices are cut horizontally . Next individually cut the side slices cross wise using the same knife and with the same precaution. The cut pieces appear square. 


Step 4:
Holding with both hands, sitting on a comfortable chair , slowly bend the edges and slightly pushing the bottom of the mango side slice upwards. Your patience and skill will be known now. 




Step 5:
Now , the seed part of the mango.
Remove the outer skin of seed leaving some small portion of the mango flesh  as shown. With small cutters or zig zag scissors or by any other means , you can make your own designs of the peeled skin. 



Step 6:
Make small cuts criss-cross on the edges of the seed and with a broad knife transfer the pieces into a small bowl. Use only stainless steel knife and  minimum use of hands. 



Step 7:
When all the pieces are cut , pour heated and cooled milk over the cut pieces and keep it in Fridge for a while.






You can use a spoon to scoop out the mango flesh. The designer-skin pieces can be swallowed as they are. 

Is  the minimum wastage ensured ?  

Wish you all a happy mango season. 


 Mallika :                   
   It is from a cross of Neelum x Dashehari. Its fruit is large in size, oblong    elliptical and in shape cadmium yellow in colour. Fruit and keeping quality are good. It is a mid season variety.                                                               

Today – 26.04.2013 , I could get a piece of Mallika Mango in Bangalore . You can see the thinness of the skin and the shining petals . The fruit is very tasty and enjoyable.

Guava Single stroke de-seeding : You like it ?



Your comments for improvements will be highly appreciated.  


Rangarajan  Ramaswamy Bangalore 16.04.2013  03:30 pm

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Shimla Mirch Aloo Stuffing


When I was working in Ajmer, Rajasthan during 1968 , I had a fancy for making this Shimla Mirch Aloo Stuffing just for fun.  Preparation used to consume lot of time and I could just afford it because there were not much of television those days. Though the utility gadgets have improved , the method remains the same.  You can try this recipe which has been supplemented by Digital Images as I am proceeding with the cooking. 

Ingredients
Quantity
Potato
_
500 grams
Shimla Mirch- Green
_
4 nos
Shimla Mirch- Red
_
1 no
Curry Leaves
_
6 to 8
Green peas
_
30 gms
Lemon
_
1 no
Cooking oil Refined
_
10 ml
Jeera
_
10 ml
Ginger         
_
Small pieces
Coriander Leaves
_
Finely chopped
Salt
_
to taste



Step 1 :
Keep the ingredients cleaned and handy.





Step 2 :
Make a “V” with a sharp knife and cut along the middle of the Shimla Mirch (Capsicum), separating the Shimla Mirch in two parts. You will know the importance of this V Cut , as you make them. Remove only the seeds and do not touch any other portion . You can use the Crochet needle , which is available for Rs 10 at any fancy and novelty shop. The Shimla Mirch without seeds has the much needed strength , when subjected to steam . Please keep this in mind. Store them in pairs, as they are cut.
                                 



Step 3 :
Mix a small amount of cooking oil and salt in a small container . Smear the Shimla Mirch all-round  with this , which will enable the Shimla Mirch to absorb the salt.

Step 4 :
Steam the potatoes and green peas separately in a pressure cooker for 3 whistles. Peel and mash the Potatoes into a fine dough with a little refined cooking oil and keep it aside for a few minutes.  Now heat a kadai and add cooking oil. In any usual method convenient to you , you can prepare the masala with Chilly Powder, Red Capsicum, Little Asafoetida , Jeera , Ginger, Curry Leaves and salt. When ready , add the Potato dough . Keeping the flame under simmer , heat the potato and the masala to a good consistency free from water. If you feel , you can add one lime juice and turn the stuffing , after the stuffing is cooled.  



Step 5 :
We are going to use 4 stainless steel small bowls. These square bowls help maintain the Shimla Mirch in vertical position when subjected to steam pressure. Fill both the halves separately with the potato mix and for consolidating you can use  the Chop Sticks , which I normally use. You  should always take Shimla Mirch in pairs. The “V Cut” now will help you to position the two halves properly .





Step 6 :
Now , keep the Shimla Mirch , positioning each of them carefully over the small square bowl to keep them vertical and stable during steaming. You can also use a small circular bowl as shown above for giving support to the Shimla Mirch. Use the pressure cooker with sufficient water below . You can wait upto 2 whistles for the cooking , since the potato is already cooked. Allow 10 minutes for cooling inside the pressure cooker. Take out the stuffing carefully and organise with the base bowl.




Step 7 :
The  Cooked Shimla-Mirch-Aloo can be served in the same square bowls. 




I have seen children eating the stuffing with a spoon and enjoying , holding the square bowl in their hands. I hope you are enjoying this methodology. This method demands concentration .


Rangarajan Ramaswamy Bangalore  06.04.2013