Tuesday, April 17

Roasted Squash Soup

Both my husband and I are not great fans of pumpkin or the acorn squash, but I don't like to avoid any vegetable for lack of our liking because every other vegetable is unique in nutrients and taste. Luckily, any vegetable is passable for both of us in form of soups or stews; so here comes the creamy squash soup.

1. Squash - 1 wedge
2. Milk - 1/2 cup
3. Cumin powder - 1/4 tsp
4. Nutmeg - 1 pinch grated
5. Salt to taste
6. Pepper to taste
7. Olive oil - 1 tbsp
8. Pumpkin seeds - 1 tbsp


Step 1: In a non-stick pan, take olive oil and saute the roughly chopped squash in medium heat until they are roast and soft

Step 2: Let it cool and then blend it smoothly with milk.
Step 3: Bring it back to the same pan and heat on low flame.
Step 4: Sprinkle cumin powder, nutmeg grated, salt, pepper and mix well.

Step 5: Pour into soup bowls, top with crispy salted pumpkin seeds and serve immediately. This is another soup that you can have the temperature you like piping hot or warm or cold.

Saturday, April 14


Uppurundai is another signature dish of my mother-in-law, I've never had it anywhere else and even after trials we did not succeed in making them as good as her's. As a recipe it is plain and simple, it is just the knack we need to get. For those people who plan and execute all the wet grinder batches (for idlis, kanjeepuram idly, dosas, appams, etc) in one day of a week, this can be tried as another small batch for that evening's snack or dinner. 
Preparation Time: 5 min (Soaking time is 2 hours)
Cooking Time: 15 minutes


1.       Idly rice – 2 cups
2.       Salt as per taste
3.       Oil – 3 tbsp
4.       Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
5.       Urad dal – 1 tbsp
6.       Channa dal – 1 tbsp
7.       Curry leaves – 1 sprig
8.       Dry chilies – 3
9.       Asafoetida – 1 pinch


Step 1: Wash and soak the rice for 2 hours. Grind it smoothly with some water and mix required salt.
Step 2: In a heavy bottomed pan, heat 2 tbsp of oil, sprinkle asafoetida, splutter mustard seeds, add urad & channa dals, thrown in curry leaves & broken chilies and add the rice batter into it.
Step 3: Stir continously until it becomes thick and gooey. Turn off heat and make lemon sized balls out of the mass while it is still hot.

Step 4: Steam the rice balls for 5 minutes and serve hot as is or with idly podi.

Thursday, April 12

Payathamparuppu Ukkali

Ukkali is a traditional sweet that tamil people used to prepare for important occasions like when a marriage alliance is fixed and mainly for Karthigai deepam. The original version of ukkali is made with rice, jaggery and lots of oil. I had prepared a simple yet tasty and healthy version of ukkali which my amma had taught when I had guests at home sometime back.

Serves: 4
Preparation Time: 15 minutes (Excludes soaking time)
Cooking Time: 10 minutes


1. Moong dal - 2 cup
2. Salt - 1 pinch
3. Baking soda - 1 tsp
4. Oil - 1 tbsp
5. Ghee - 1 tbsp
6. Sugar - 2 cup
7. Cashew - 2 tbsp
8. Cardamom powder - 1 tsp


Step 1: Wash and soak the moong dal for 2 hours. Grind with minimum water into a smooth paste.

 Step 2: Mix oil, baking soda, salt and mix well. Pour into idly plates and steam cook them for 5-10 minutes.

 Step 3: Let the idlies cool down to normal temperature. Then break them into small pieces and whip them in a dry mixer jar few times not doing for more than two seconds per trip. You'll get a soft powdery consistency now. Repeat for all idlis and collect them in a bowl.

Step 4: Heat ghee, fry broken cashews and take the cashews in a bowl. 
Step 5: Add powdered sugar (my mom uses sugar crystals but I powder it), crushed dal idlies, cardamom powder and mix gently in low heat for not more than 2 minutes else they'll form halwa.
Step 6: Garnish with fried cashew nuts and serve warm.