White Pumpkin (Ash gourd) Kootu | Vellai Poosanikai Kootu


White pumpkin(ash gourd) in Tamil it is called as thadiyangai or vellai poosani. White pumpkin is popular in South Indian foods and widely used in kootu, sambar and patchadi. This white pumpkin kootu is a traditional dish in Tirunelveli. White pumpkin kootu is cooked with coconut paste and chana dal.

 
This kootu is a best choice to pair with sambar and pulikuzhambu. Just like my other kootu varieties, I recommend to cook in a deep vessel with frequent stirs. This method gives you the perfect results rather than pressure cooking.
Here are my other kootu recipes

Coriander leaves Chutney | Kothamalli Ilai Thuvaiyal

Coriander leaves/Kothamalli thuvaiyal is a simple condiment for curd rice with a unique taste. Flavourful and healthy thuvaiyal. Kothamalli thuvaiyal and curd rice is a favourite lunch for my father. It was such a great accompaniment for the curd rice.

Coriander leaves /Kothamalli thuvaiyal recipe - How to prepare Kothamalli thuvaiyal with step by step instructions -


There are a few basics for this thuvaiyal that you must follow to achieve a tasty thuvaiyal. I prefer to use only the leaves for this thuvaiyal. So separate each leaf from the stem and then grind it. Just make sure to use fresh coriander leaves for this dish. The red chillies must be roasted for a second and then grind along with the fresh coriander leaves. Don't forget to add the tamarind because it helps to keep the thuvaiyal best for 2 to 3 days. After grinding the coriander paste do not saute them in the oil for too long because it will lose the wonderful flavours from the coriander leaves. You have to saute them in the oil just for a few minutes. Now let's see how to prepare this coriander leaves thuvaiyal.
Checkout my other condiment for curd rice

Kaju Katli | Cashew Nut Fudge

Kaju katli (Cashew nut Fudge) - a delicious sweet made within 15 minutes. For this kaju katli you just need 3 ingredients that you already have in your kitchen. They are the fresh whole cashew nuts, sugar and a tbsp of ghee. And the best part is the cooking method is very simple. For this sweet I recommend to prepare with the whole cashew nuts for the texture and the flavour. When grinding the cashew nuts, it is very important not to over grind it.

Kaju Katli | Cashew Nut Fudge Recipe | How to prepare Kaju katli | Cashw nut fudge with step by step photos | Kaju Katli | Easy Diwali sweets | Sweets recipes

As the grinding exceeds, the natural fat in the nuts start to release and it will change the texture of the sweet. The 2nd most important thing in this sweet is the sugar syrup consistency. You should add the cashew nuts powder when you get the one string consistency. After adding the cashew nuts powder, it will take only 3 minutes to complete the process. Do not do other things when preparing this sweet, focus entirely on the katlis and definitely you will get an amazing result.
Here is my other similar dessert recipes


Seepankizhangu Varuval | Taro root Roast

Seepankizhangu varuval is a spicy roast with flavours from red chilly powder and garlics. The seepankizhangu (taro root) are cooked in an open vessel and cut into small circles and mixed with chilly powder, gram flour, rice flour to roast it. The mixed taro roots slices  are deep fried in oil and then they are sauted with chopped garlics and curry leaves. The pressure cooking method for taro root gives you a mushy dish so I cook the taro roots in an open vessel. You can also steam the taro roots for 7 to 10 minutes.

Seepankizhangu Varuval | Taro root Roast | How to prepare Seepankizhangu varuval with step by step photos | Seepankizhangu recipes | Vegetable Side dishes for lunch

For kids we usually prepare tamarind rice or lemon rice or coconut rice for their lunch boxes. Some side dishes made with potatoes are best suitable for those kind of rice varities. We can prepare different varieties with any potatoes and the methods are endless. This seepankizhangu (taro root) varuval is the best side dish for kids lunch box.

Simple Vegetable Kurma

This is a simple vegetable kurma with a combination of vegetables made with coconut paste and little garam masala powder for the flavours. There are no other extra spices or some other special ingredients like fresh cream, cashew nuts or poppy seeds.

Simple Vegetable Kurma | How to prepare simple vegetable kurma with step by step instructions | Simple Veg Kurma recipe | Side dishes for roti, poori and parotta

Dinner plays an important role for a good sleep. Sometimes it is uncomfortable for us to have a kurma with lots of flavours for dinner.This kurma works well because there is no additional flavours and five different vegetables with fiber which helps in digestion. This kurma is also suitable for elderly people and people who have heartburns and also for your kids. Make sure to include carbohydrates (dosa, chapathi or idiyappam) along with this vegetable kurma to have a balanced dinner.
Here is my other kurma recipes

Millets and Toor dal dosa

Millets toor dal dosas are simple dosas made with millets, toor dal, red chillies and a small piece of tamarind. It is an easy recipe and can be made with any millets as you wish. In this dish I have used proso kodo millets. This dosa makes a great dinner without any much effort.


The secret to this crispy dosas is in the grinding the batter in correct consistency. After grinding the batter, I have added finely chopped onions and curry leaves. These dosas require no fermenting, so simply add the onions and any other chopped vegetables or greens and start preparing the crispy dosas. You can serve this dosa with any chutney or sambar. The combination of millets with toor dal is perfect for dosas plus this recipe is easy too.

Coconut chutney with red chillies - Sivappu thengai chutney

This coconut chutney with red chillies are also similar to the coconut chutney with green chillies. For this chutney also we use tamarind and small onions. This chutney is a very good side dish for idly, wheat dosa, upma and also good for travel foods. If you are packing this chutney for a long travel, saute the ground chutney in the kadai after tempering until the moisture in the chutney evaporates. You can also use one onion vadagam for tempering.

Coconut chutney with red chillies| How to prepare Coconut chutney with red chillies with step by step photos|Sivappu thengai chutney|Chutney recipes

Coconut chutney with green chillies- Pachai Thengai chutney

This coconut chutney with green chillies is a simple side dish for all the tiffin varieties. This chutney should be ground using the freshest ingredients. For this chutney do not use refrigerated coconuts and green chillies. Before grinding the chutney, keep the green chillies in room temperature 1 hour ahead of time. In Tirunelveli, for this chutney we add a small piece of tamarind and a few small onions for tempering. It is a very good chutney to serve with idly, dosa, pongal, vada, baji and bonda.

Coconut chutney with green chillies|Thengai chutney|How to prepare Coconut chutney with step by step instructions|Chutney recipes

Puliyodarai | Tamarind rice

Puliyodarai/Tamarind rice is an authentic rice dish in Tamil Nadu. The cooked rice mixed with the tangy and spicy tamarind paste prepared with the classic ingredients. Each and every ingredient in the pulikachal (tamarind mix) adds flavour to this rice.

Puliyodarai|Tamarind rice - How to prepare Puliyodarai/Tamarind rice with step by step instructions|Puliyodari recipe|Lunch recipes

If you miss any one ingredient you will miss the perfect taste also. Nobody can say no to this classic and evergreen puliyodarai. To reach the ultimate perfection you must follow each and every step carefully.  There are many ready- made rice mixes are available for puliyodarai but preparing your own pulikachal for this puliyodarai is interesting and also gives you a unique taste.

Puliyodarai|Tamarind rice - How to prepare Puliyodarai/Tamarind rice with step by step instructions|Puliyodari recipe|Lunch recipes

Now let's see the important steps before preparing pulikachal
  • You have to use only gingely oil for this rice. Other oils cannot give you the perfect taste.
  • You have to cook the tamarind paste (pulikachal) with all the basic ingredients such as fenugreek, red chillies, compounded asafoetida, curry leaves and black sesame seeds. Please do not replace red chillies with chilly powder, black sesame seeds with white sesame seeds.
  • The best part about this pulikachal is you can store the remaining paste in the refrigerator. So prepare a good quantity of this mix and store it in the refrigerator for future use.
  • The rice is another important ingredient for this dish.Try to use ponni raw rice for this puliyodarai. Ponni raw rice works the best. 

Collection of Pongal festival recipes

Wish you all a Happy Pongal. In Tirunelveli for Pongal festival we prepare Pongal in outdoors in a brass or clay pot and then offered to the sun. In the offerings we keep all the vegetables, coconut, bananas, sugarcane and the cooked rice.



We cook traditional sambar prepared with different kinds of vegetables, cabbage thuvaram, potato puttu, yellow pumpkin kootu, pachadi , vada and payasam. Here is a collection of the recipes for the Pongal festival. Click on the pictures to view the recipe in detail. We serve all these varieties in the plantain leaf.

http://www.virundhombal.com/2017/04/cabbage-carrot-and-beans-stir-fry.html

http://www.virundhombal.com/2017/01/aviyal.html

http://www.virundhombal.com/2017/03/ladies-finger-pachadi.html

http://www.virundhombal.com/2017/09/idi-sambar.htmlhttp://www.virundhombal.com/2017/11/yellow-pumpkin-kootu.html


http://www.virundhombal.com/2017/09/potato-puttupodimas.html

http://www.virundhombal.com/2017/10/ulundha-vadai.html

http://www.virundhombal.com/2017/08/moong-dal-payasam.htm

Shahi Gobi Masala

Shahi gobi masala is a super easy to make a restaurant style gravy with cauliflower, green peas and other basic spices. You can prepare this Shahi gobi for your weekend breakfast or even for your regular weeknight dinner.

 
Onions, tomatoes, cashew nuts, ginger, garlic are the common ingredients in gravies and additionally we have to fry spices like cumins, coriander seeds, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves along with the cashew nuts are ground for the masala. Tomato paste which is deep red in colour give the dish a beautiful reddish appearance like restaurant style gravies. There are two major preparations for a perfect masalas or gravies. First, for any masalas if you use the ground masala paste you have to saute them on a low heat until the raw smell disappears. Second, the vegetables must be fully incorporated well in the gravy to get an aromatic masala. The cauliflower and green peas, cook easily to blend in the gravy. Now let's see how to prepare this restaurant style Shahi gobi with step by step photos.
Here is my other restaurant style gravy recipes

Black urid dal rice-Ulundam paruppu sadham

Black urid dal rice/Ulundam paruppu choru is another popular lunch food in Tirunelveli. It is also our favourite weekend lunch. Black urid dals are a good source of many nutrients. It is packed with proteins, fiber and folic acid. With so much nutrients packed in this dal, adding this dal in your regular diet can improve your health.

Black urid dal rice|Ulundam paruppu sadham|Tirunelveli Ulundam paruppu choru|How to prepare black urid dal|Ulundam paruppu sadham with step by step instructions.


This black urid dal rice includes all healthy ingredients like black urid dal, fresh grated coconuts, garlic cloves and gingely oil. We serve this rice with healthy side dishes like aviyal and black sesame seeds thuvaiyal. This urid dal rice give you a wholesome and energizing lunch completely free of saturated fats. This black urid dal rice is a one pot meal which can be easily cooked in a pressure cooker. Fresh grated coconuts taste good for this rice as it produces a natural sweet in the rice. Frozen coconuts or coconut powder won't have the sweetness when compared with the fresh coconuts. Don't skip the fenugreek and the garlic cloves in this rice since it brings out the best flavour for the entire dish. Now let's see how to prepare this Black urid dal rice.
Checkout my aviyal  recipe with step by step photos.


Mushroom Biryani

Mushroom Biryani is a wonderful rice prepared with onions, tomatoes, whole garam masala and the button mushrooms. Try to include mushrooms in your regular diet for twice or thrice in a week. Mushrooms contain so much nutritional benefit and they are also low in calories, fat-free and very low in sodium.

Mushroom Biryani|Rice with button mushrooms|One pot meal|Mushroom recipes|Lunch box recipes|How to prepare mushroom biryani with step by step photos

It is a very good food for kids, ladies and also for diabetes. Be it a biryani or kurma or any stir fry, try to add mushrooms in your regular foods. I have posted few mushroom recipes in my blog. Now let's see how to prepare this biryani. This biryani is a one pot dish prepared within 30 minutes. I have used basmati rice for this biryani you can use any jeera samba rice or ponni raw rice. Here is my other recipe with mushrooms

Sweet potato smileys

Preparing healthy and different snacks for kids is really an interesting work. Usually we prepare snacks based on potatoes. But this time I have changed with sweet potatoes.

Sweet potato smileys | Homemade smileys with sweet potatoes| How to prepare sweet potato smileys -  This smiley is prepared with mashed sweet potatoes and a very few ingredients for flavours. When you are in need of a quick and healthy snacks for kids this sweet potato smiley is perfect.
 
This smiley is prepared with mashed sweet potatoes and a very few ingredients for flavours. When you are in need of a quick and healthy snacks for kids this sweet potato smiley is perfect. You can ask your kids to make the eyes and lips. Come on, let's see how to prepare this smileys.

Vegetable Pulav

Vegetable pulav is one of the easiest rice prepared within 15 minutes. You can prepare this rice for your kids lunch box or any dinner party. In this pulav, the flavours get even better as it cools down. Sometimes this kind of simple pulav with fresh vegetables was so easy to prepare without any much effort.



Vegetable pulav is one of the easiest rice prepared within 15 minutes. You can prepare this rice for your kids lunch box or any dinner party. In this pulav, the flavours get even better as it cools down. Sometimes this kind of simple pulav with fresh vegetables was so easy to prepare without any much effort.
In this pulav I have used all the basic vegetables and few spices for the flavours. The tomatoes aren't necessary for this pulav, if you want, you can add a little one. Garnish with extra vegetables like red capsicums or green capsicums or any nuts whatever you would like. Now let's see how to prepare this easy and simple vegetable pulav. Check out my other pulav recipes here

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