Sunday, April 11, 2010

Dinner for Two!

I prepared dinner tonight. I made one vegetable dish and two rice dishes.

Here is what I made:
  1. South Indian Coconut Rice
  2. Tamarind Tangy Spicy Rice (Vathal Kozhambu Rice)
  3. Green Beans Coconut Curry
These recipes are probably available elsewhere on the net as well. I did not learn how to make these from a recipe book. I simply observed my mom when she cooked and tried to recreate them from memory. Of course, I have cooked them a whole bunch of times since I was a young man and so I don't need a recipe book for these items anymore.


Notations:
Tsp = Teaspoon
Tbsp = Tablespoon

My recipe for Coconut Rice
Ingredients:
Cooked Basmati Rice (2-4 cups)
While Lentil (Urad Dal) 1 Tsp (Garnish)
Mustard Seeds 1 Tsp (Garnish)
Yellow Split Peas (Channa Dal) 1 Tsp (Garnish)
Shredded Coconut 1 Cup
Sliced Ginger 1 Tbsp (Garnish)
Olive Oil 1/4 cup
Chopped Green Chilies 1 Tbsp (Garnish)
Chopped Curry leaves 1 Tbsp (Garnish)
Whole Cashews about 10 (Garnish)
Clarified Butter (Ghee) 1 Tbsp
Chopped cilantro 1/4 cup
Asafoetida 1 sprinkle (a pinch)




Preparation:
  1. In a sauce pan, heat up the olive oil, splatter the mustard seeds first (keep the lid on to avoid mess). When the first mustard seed starts popping, you can turn down the heat to low.
  2. After the mustard seeds are done popping, add the garnish items and roast them until the cashews and the lentils turn slightly golden.
  3. Turn up the heat just a tad, add the ghee to the pan. When the ghee melts, add the shredded coconut and sprinkle the asafoetida.
  4. Saute the mixture in the pan for about 3-4 minutes, until the shredded coconut starts to turn yellowish. I don't fry the shredded coconut until brown, while some may want to.
  5. Turn off the heat.
  6. Put the cooked Basmati rice in a large mixing bowl, add the contents of the pan to it, and the chopped cilantro, some salt to taste and mix the contents into the rice with a knife. Use caution so you don't mush the rice into a pulp.
Did someone say they are hungry?

My Recipe for Green Beans Curry
Ingredients:
While Lentils (Urad Dal) 1 Tsp (Garnish)
Mustard Seeds 1 Tsp (Garnish)

Yellow Split Peas (Channa Dal) 1 Tsp (Garnish)
Shredded Coconut 4 Tbsp

Olive Oil 2 Tbsp
Chopped Curry leaves 1 Tbsp (Garnish)
Chopped Cilantro 1/4 cup
Cut Green Beans 24 Oz
Dried Chilies 3 (Garnish)

Preparation:
  1. In a pot, cook the green beans until they are tender (but not mushy). Drain the water and set the green beans aside.
  2. In a larger skillet, heat up the Olive oil.
  3. Splatter the mustard seeds. When the first mustard seed starts popping, you can turn down the heat to low.
  4. After the mustard seeds are done popping, add the garnish items and roast them until the lentils turn slightly golden.
  5. Add the green beans to the skillet, add a pinch of asafoetida, a pinch of salt and a pinch of turmeric. Next, add the shredded coconut and saute for about 3-5 minutes on low to medium heat. You don't have to fry to green beans, so it might serve you well to keep the lid on.
  6. Turn off the heat, add the cilantro and mix into the green beans.
Did someone say dinner?

Tamarind Tangy Spicy Rice (Vathal Kozhambu Rice)
I do not have a quick recipe for preparing this dish. I simply cook the rice in a rice cooker and when it is fully cooked, I add a ready-made paste of Vathal Kozhambu to make this dish. This paste is available in bigger Indian Grocery stores. I know how to make this paste from scratch but I have not mastered the art quite yet and I think it is simply delicious as made by MTR (brand).
Is this one humongous ginger root or what?
Rambo supervised my cooking tonight and wants to say Hello!

That's all I got for my first post on this new blog!

Please feel free to share your thoughts with me.

Peace :)

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