Mini Idly

Given the relatively short duration I’ve been cooking regularly ( less than one and a half year now), and given the long time I’ve been away from home (since 2008 for my first job), I don’t come up with dishes that easily. I just stuck to the basics. For instance, idly occurred to me, but it took quite a while for me figure out that I need a mini-idly pan.

My kitchen cookware was pretty basic, and for the most part, it still is. The list of things I need keep growing – but I want to buy things only that I realllllllyyyyy will use on a regular basis. I add it to my list – when I miss it for a few times, then I buy it. This is mostly because I have a smaller kitchen at present, but i realize it’s a good habit that i hope to carry on. I bought a set of baking tools recently, and i love using them. Similarly for an indian-mixer grinder. I guess my motto is somewhat like – “Anything that deserves a counter space on my tiny kitchen has to really prove its worth” LOL

Anyway, I ran into mini-idlies while browsing through a list of recipes online, but then I only had regular idly pans. That didn’t deter me when it came to making mini sambar idlies for a couple of friends visiting that evening. I used the regular pans, and added very (very!) little batter, and cooked them. Well, that gave about 12 idlies for one run. Took me about 3 hours to make enough idlies for 4 people, and they turned out to be flat in shape. After a couple of times making mini-idlies this way, I finally made mom send me mini-idly pan through someone who was visiting.

These idlies do look like they were made with mini-idly pans. My favorite way of eating them is as sambar-idlies. Hmm, mouth watering.

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Aloo Egg curry

I have made this curry for many get togethers. It’s a kerala dish, but it goes especially well with fried rice. It’s pretty simple – the aloo gives the gravy a nice thick consistency.

MAB made it this time. He usually helps me with one dish when we have many guests, and I’m multi tasking with many dishes. Oh, even writing about it makes me want to eat this dish NOW!

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Chocolate Cake

I made this for Hubby’s birthday in 2014. I’ve experimented with this cake few times since then

  • Writing on it ( I said experimented – not succeeded 🙂 )
  • Decorating. Again no comments on how it turned out.
  • 3 layers instead of just two – Gooooood!!
  • Altering chocolate and whipped cream filling – This was the best

No matter how I do it, it has been incredibly tasty – I hope some folks can attest to it. Especially if served after a day or two of baking – Talk of all the filling soaking into the cake, and making it oh-so-moist!! I’ve even helped a friend bake it at our home for her family party. I wish there was a different name to it – calling it just a regular John-Doe-Chocolate-Cake seems to do injustice to it. Oh well!

It’s a shame I don’t have more pictures of it – I will update this post if I find more pics somewhere hidden, or when I make it the next time.

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Tofu Tikka

I find myself using the oven more and more these days – at least for one meal of the day. Though this Tofu tikka is perfect for barbecuing, it came out pretty decent when I grilled in my conventional oven.

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Chapathi, Shrimp curry, and fish fry

Somedays, I’m in the mood for eating healthy, tasty as well as trying something new. This was one of the days. I made

  • Chappathi
  • Chettinad Shrimp – Turned out to be 6 out of 10, Also took long to prepare. Maybe not worth the time.
  •  Fish Fry – I used Tilapia as I get it easily here. I used to make it in smaller pieces, but now prefer the whole slice. I believe the flavor gets locked in better; also you run into the risk of burning faster if you used smaller pieces.

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Low fat chocolate parfait

I have made this so many times this year. Hubby also made it once for 8 of us

Made from fat free chocolate pudding (with 2% fat milk), fat free whipped cream and fruits, this dessert doesn’t pack as many calories as it appears to. There are many examples where fat free equals taste free (read fat free milk, Hershey’s fat free and the like!), but this one is an exception, and I hope some friends can vouch for it
It’s also very light – because of alternating layers of ingredients providing different flavor and texture while eating.

It’s one of those foods where presentation takes more time than preparation. Love it any day.

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Baked potato crisps

Who doesn’t crave potato fries.. It’s the best mid night snack (second in line is popcorn). Baking is a slightly healthier (and easier!) option than frying. Cut the oil and just get the carbs. It was nevertheless very tasty.. Guess the salt and paprika made up for not frying.

Made this a couple of months back, and hopefully again soon this holiday season

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