Friday, November 2, 2012

Recipe for a Quickie - Berry Blast

A perfect non-alcoholic thirst quencher when you really don't have the time to be creative and original.

Things Needed:

1 Cup of Cold Curd
2 Teaspoons of any Fruit Jam
3 Tablespoons of Sugar
4 Teaspoons   Cold Water as needed
.. And a pinch of Vanilla powder

To Do:

Take the curd, add some water and stir continuously to reduce the thickness. During the process, add sugar as well. Pour the mixture on to the blender and add in 2 spoons of Fruit Jam. Add a pinch of vanilla powder.Blend the mixture for 2 minutes. Pour the mixture on to a tall glass and let it settle for a minute. 

Friday, September 28, 2012

Rum-Pum Soup of Thong Lo Street

On my first night at Bangkok, I decided to stroll through the wet streets of Thong Lo to fulfill my primary and ultimate objective of the trip - FOOD (You can read more about the trip in here). And in less than 2 minutes, there I was, waiting in front of a roadside hawker selling this delicious soup. Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you, the Rum-Pum Soup of Thong Lo.

As like many vendors in Bangkok, they do focus on one product, the soup. The ingredients were right in front of us but at first glance, they were confusing as nothing seemed working together. At one point,  I even noticed rotten eggs!

The soup seemed like a mix of various seafood, pork, chicken and eggs. And the bowl came in three sizes. I chose the medium one which was TBH 40/-

The soup was a decent mix of all meat. It had a good balance between the tanginess and spices. Seasoned with Coriander, Spring Onions and Shallots, the soup had a strong fish sauce flavor to it. On the downside, you might end up with a lot of liquid once after you have finished all your pieces and the only option is to leave it (which could be a little heart-breaking). 

Rating: 3/5 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Taste of Kerala at Vembanadu:The Paul

When I am eating outside I dont usually prefer keralite cuisine. For one reason that paying 350 INR for an  'Avial', which I consider as a 'throw-out-without-touching' part in the daily meal, doesnt make any sense. 
But when I stepped out of Vembanad lounge at The Paul, my perception got a big make over! 

Vembanad is the in-house keralite restaurant of The Paul. You will be taken to your table by the well-mannered and soft spoken staff. The ambience is comforting with dimmed mood lighting and retro malayalam instrumentals. 

They had an amazing range in their slightly over-priced menu. As I was browsing through the familiar yet forgotten names, my table was equipped with a set of assorted regional starters. Every single element tasted awesome, especially the Powdered Prawns and Fish Pickle.

I ordered a Central-Kerala delicacy for my Non-Vegetarian start up for the day. Meen Nirachathu (Filled Fish). Well cooked fish filled with a paste of green mango and coconut inside. Hmmm, that was heaven inside the mouth for 47 seconds.

For the main part, I chose Pathiri (Rice Toasts) along with Crab Ularthiyathu and Duck Curry. The Crab was shell-free which made the eating process a lot easier. The combination was awesome. 

Overall the experience was good enough that I would recommend the place to every foodie that I know. Slightly over priced but worth every single penny. An average meal for one should be somewhere around 1000 INR. 

Vembanad: The Paul is located in Domlur near Diamond District, Bangalore.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Mutton Ularthiyathu

Things Needed:

a.     Oil 3 Table Spoon
b.     Curry Leaves 15 leaves
c.     Big Onions 2
d.     Chilli Powder 2 Table Spoon
e.     Turmeric Powder 2 Tea Spoon
f.      Coriander powder 2 Table Spoon
g.     Coconut Half cup grated
h.     Salt To taste
i.      Mutton 250 grams
j.      Pepper powder 1 tea spoon
k.     Garam Masala/Meat Masala 1 Tea Spoon


Bring oil to heat in a pan, and add dried red chilli, mustard seeds, curry leaves and sauté for 1 minute. Add green chilli, ginger and garlic finely chopped to the pan and after a minute add finely chopped onions also. Add garam masala, chilli powder, turmeric, coriander powder and pepper powder to the mixture in the pan. The mutton pieces (cooked with a pinch of turmeric powder and salt) and half cup grated coconut can be added. In low flame mix the mixture for 10 minutes. 

 Courtesy: Chitra

Kerala Prawns Roast

Things Needed:

a.     Prawns 250 gm
b.     Oil 3 Table Spoon
c.     Curry Leaves 15 leaves
d.     Small Onions 20
e.     Chilli Powder 3 Table Spoon
f.      Turmeric Powder 2 Tea Spoon
g.     Lime Juice 1 Tea Spoon
h.     Coconut 5-10 small chopped pieces
i..      Salt To taste

Bring oil in a pan to boil. Add finely chopped ginger and garlic to the pan with curry leaves. After sautéing the mixtures for a couple of minutes add chopped small onions and sauté, then add turmeric powder, chilli powder paste. Then add cleaned prawns (marinated in chilli powder, turmeric powder, lemon juice and salt). Close the lid and keep it cooking in low flame for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes add chopped coconut pieces to the pan and mix it well.

Courtesy: Chitra

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Taste Alert: Homegrown at Kanjirapally

A quick heads-up to anyone who are enroute Peerumedu/Kuttikanam via Kanjirapally. This one is a must-try.

You will find a Homegrown shop owned by Cadbury India LTD very near to Kanjirapally right on the (Kottayam-Kumili) main road, by your left side. Do stop there, Go in and Ask for Coconut Special Juice! 

They blends coconut water with the tender coconut kernel and added sweeteners along with milk and cardamom. 

You are in for a surprise treat, friend!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Behind the Scenes of a Chicken Curry

Another really basic cuisine breakdown. All I had in my freezer was Chicken Breasts left over from the Grilled Chicken Gig. I was really tired and wanted to finish off the dinner process. Finally decided to go for the basic traditional curry style.

Things needed:
Diced Chicken
Green Chillies
Mustard Seeds
Coriandar Powder
Chilli Powder
Turmeric Powder
Ginger and Garlic Pips
Chicken Masala Powder
Salt and Oil as needed

Action Plan:

1. Get all your ingredients ready. Take the ginger and garlic pips and crush it to paste on a traditional stone grinder. Add in some lemon juice during the process. (Now, grinding part is optional and the only reason I did it was because of being too lazy to turn on the electric mixer for this job).

2. Chop the onions to semi-rings, tomatoes to dices and chillies to tubes.

All the ingredients ready and handy to go! 

3. Mix well and Marinate for a few minutes, the Chicken Pieces with Chilli Powder, Turmeric Powder, Ginger Garlic Paste, Salt and 2 teaspoons of curd. 

4. Pour some oil in a heated pan and add cut Onions to it. Stir Fry till golden brown and add in tomatoes, green chillies, chicken masala powder, ginger garlic paste, turmeric powder and coriander powder. Stir well. 

5. Add in the marinated chicken pieces. Mix them well with the fried masala mix in the pan. Add in water and salt as needed.

6. If needed you can change the mix to a larger vessel. Cook thoroughly with the lid closed. At every occasional check, you can throw in some spices to add some flavor (Cardamoms,Nuts, Leaves, Sticks etc).

You now have a very easy to cook yet tasty Kerala Chicken Curry in front of you. 


Thursday, February 23, 2012

Orange Grilled Chicken: A quick and easy dinner

This is an extremely easy dinner recipe.

Things Needed:
Chicken Breast Steaks 2 Pcs
An Orange
Salt , Pepper Powder , Butter
Microsoft  Microwave Oven

1. Set up your workspace. Get everything ready and handy. Defrost the chicken. Pre-heat the oven and double check all the ingredients.

At this moment, I was pretty unsure on what to eat after 3 hours of day sleep! Photo: Tripod

2. Put the steaks in water and boil it till cooked. Add in some salt and pepper during the process. 

3. Use a fork to check the cooking progress and once done, take it out. Brush some butter over the cooked steaks. Also add some pepper and salt (If you want to use any grill-sauce on this, now is the time to add in and marinate the steaks). Place the steaks in the grill rack.

4. Grill the steak for about 20 mins (turning sides at 10 mins). 

5. Once if its says Beep and you agree ; place the steaks on a plate and pour in few spoons of the stock (mixed with a cup of orange juice) over it. Serve the very next second!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Contemporary Cuisines of Mandarin Express

Mandarin Express is a contemporary chinese restaurant located in Church Street, Bangalore. My hunt for authentic (even a runner-up) chinese cuisine took me to this fine place, a couple of days back. It was a sunny day and I was really tired after an hour of used-book hunting at Blossoms. Mandarin Express was right across the street and as I was starving, to passing out and eventually death, the decision making process on where to eat was considerably short.

The place looked cozy and pleasant with mood lighting and bright red on everything. (They even had an Orange-tree prototype right at the centre!) 

That's me waiting for my menu to arrive

I started my course with a set of Non-vegetarian Dumplings. 

I am a non-alcoholic but cant resist the occasional vibes from a cold breezer. 

Dumplings came straight from heaven. Amazing mixture and perfectly cooked, it literally melted in my mouth. The texture and the aroma reminded me of the countless and awesome dimsums I had while being in Singapore. A sip of the cold orange flavoured breezer was a quick and effective reset before another fork of Dumpling.

For the main course, I ordered the house special, Meal in a Bowl. 

Another great choice, with a mix of vegetables, meat, rice/noodles and sauces - this will grow on you. The combination I proposed was a bit too spicy, but the breezer helped a lot.

Verdict: Must Visit. Mandarin Express is a bit expensive. An average meal for two should cost you 1500 INR. They have a great menu with a wide variety of Chinese Cuisine. The Ambience is good. They have a lounge area as well, which is open to the streets, but is poorly maintained. Its recommended that you enjoy your meal inside where you can watch all the things in red and once again...the Orange-tree prototype!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Nostalgic Home Food 2: Idiyirachi (Beaten Dry Meat)

Another Nostalgic tastebud memory. The warm crunchy pieces of beaten dried beef multiplying into a thousand little pieces inside your mouth. It was called 'Idiyirachi' (beaten meat) and I tasted it for the first time from an old friend's lunchbox. Making Idiyirachi is not rocket science, not even soup science, but its not a fast deal as well. Here's the recipe, try it out once. Its worth the effort.

Things Needed:

Beef Steak Slices.

Make thin little pieces of the steak slices. Sun dry the pieces for at least 24 hrs. (Ideally that means 24hrs of sun. Moonlight not applicable). Take the pieces and beat to death fibrous dry pulp. Its always good to use the traditional stone beater for this one, but you can alternatively achieve this with 2 or 3 dry spins on your electric mixer. Add some salt, mix and store it in an airtight container. Now remember that its still raw. You can now prepare a variety of dishes with this beauty.

Quickie 1: 
Shallow fry the pieces with a little oil and Chili powder = Total Awesomeness!

Quickie 2 :
Oil fry the pieces with some onions, red & green capsicums, pepper powder and sauces. 


Saturday, January 28, 2012

Nostalgic Home Food 1: Mango Rice with Green Chillies

Here guys and gals, this is one from the list of my all-time nostalgic home food favorites. Now, don't expect anything fancy here. This is a strictly limited list and something very personal. Sometimes its all about the combination, sometimes its a custom-made culinary art. I am sure that many of you might be familiar with the cuisine I am gonna show you today and for those who have no idea how this feels in your mouth, give it a try. 

Mango Rice with Green Chillies

(Not a real picture; doesnt even look the same; just ignore the pic)

Pretty easy to make, this one is definitely a heavy meal by itself. This is a mix and make dish which you can make in less than 5 minutes.

Things needed:

Cooked Boiled Rice.
Ripe Mango- 1
Green Chillies- 2
Mashed Tapioca

Squeeze till the last drop of Mango to the rice. Add Curd to the rice. Add in lengthy chops of green chillies. Mix well. Add in some Mashed Tapioca (which is thoroughly cooked with a pinch of turmeric powder and salt). Add salt to taste. Mix well and Eat. This tastes best when used as a stand-alone meal. Enjoy!