Pongal Gotsu | Tiffin Side dish

pongal gosthu
Pongal gotsu is one of the easiest Break fast side dish . It can be made in jiffy ! flat 20 minutes, Yes Though we make Easy gotsu for other south indian tiffin varities like idly, dosai. This Gotsu is very apt for pongal ! All you need to do is ready with the chopped veggies ! Saute , add then leave for 3 whistles, Your Gotsu is ready ! Its very handy when you are in hurry ! I have already shared the two varieties of Gotsu Both made with brinjal one without coconut and other with coconut version . The method of making is different and so the ingredients .

If you have get to gether or guest coming you can make this in bulk and it can be served for Hot pongal, idly and dosai.  Pongal is our all time favorite ! my husband wont expect anything extra if you serve this pongal and gotsu combination ! That too if you serve three times a day . This is my mother version of gotsu! I enjoyed the combination hope you do !

Preparation Time : 15 minutes
Cooking Time : 20 minutes
Serves - 4 people


Onion - 2 medium size
Tomato - 2 medium size
Brinjal - 2 medium size
Carrot - 1 medium size
Ginger - 1 tbsp
green chilly - 3 nos finely chopped
moong dal - 3/4 cup
salt - as required
red chilly powder - 1/2 tsp
water - 2 1/2 cups
oil - 1 tsp
ghee - 1 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
jeera - 1 tsp
curry leaves /coriander leaves - few to temper


Take the pressure cooker , and add the ghee and oil once its hot, add the mustard seeds once its cracked add the jeera and green chilly saute for minutes, then add the onion and tomato saute till tomato oozes its water,

Then add the brinjal and carrot and saute for a minute and add the turmeric and red chilly powder. add 1/2 cup of water. allow it to boil,once its starts boiling, add the moong dal and add required amt of water,  i added 2 cups of water and adjust salt. Then close the lid and leave for 3 whistles.

Once the sound off, open the lid and give a nice stir, consistency can be adjusted by adding the water, if you are adding water, then keep it in the flame for 5 more minutes, else garnish with coriander leaves and serve it with Hot pongal.

P.S: I have wrongly written it as gosthu in the image, its gotsu . 

  • Adding red chilly powder is an optional, you can adjust as per family need. 
  • Adding potato and green peas is other option . 
  • Few ppl grind coconut along with red chilly and a tsp of cumin seeds and add it to the gotsu finally  
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Aloo Gobi Masala (dry sabzi)

Aloo gobi s great classic combination , i have already shared my Gravy type recipe which has mutter, this is a simple gravy with garlic ginger paste and few spices,  but this aloo gobi dry is different from the gravy I have prepared this aloo gobi dry subji with the spices that available in my pantry , heard few people use 3 to 8 spices that available in their pantry ,  So the spices can be very well customized as per the availability . It has n no of variations , people use different spices and different ingredients too , It can be made without onion and garlic too, i have avoided the garlic flavor where as i have added the onion. This is a classic dry sabji  and well go with Roti, phulka, naan, butter naan,kulcha some mild flavored pulao and jeera rice too . This aloo gobi combo never go wrong ! So if you are beginner, or newly married or a bachelor , do give a try ! I am sure you will succeed. 

Aloo Gobi1

Preparation Time : 15 minutes
cooking time : less than 25 minutes
servings - 3


Potato - 3/4 cup chopped
Cauliflower - 1 cup half boiled and strained.
onion - 1 large size finely chopped
Green chilly - 2 nos finely chopped
ginger - 1 tsp grated
spring onion leaves - 1/4 cup chopped(optional)
red chilly powder - 1 1/2 tsp (adjust the spice as per family choice)
coriander powder - 1 tsp
garam masala powder - 2tsp
Turmeric powder  - a pinch
kitchen king maslaa powder - 1tsp (optional else use pavbhajji  masala)
Kasthuri methi leaves - 1 tsp crushed btw palm
salt - as required
Oil - 2 tbsp +  1 tsp
mustard seeds - 1 tsp
cumin seeds - 1 tsp
coriander leaves - for tempering
Lemon juice - 1/2 tsp
Aloo Gobi1


chop the vegetables and boil the cauliflower as per the method and strain the water,  do not over boil it , half cooked is enough
Aloo Gobi1

Heat the kadai and pour the 2tbsp of oil wait till its heat then add the mustard seeds once splutters add the cumin seeds then add the ginger and green chilly saute for 30 seconds and add the chopped onion saute till its turn to semi brown .
Aloo Gobi1

Then add the potato give a nice mix, add the required amt of salt and keep the flame in the medium and stir occasionally and wait till its half cooked, Then add the half boiled cauliflower and give a nice mix  now add all the spices mentioned and stir it for evenly mentioned and allow it cook completely. You can close it using the lid.
Aloo Gobi1

Check after 10 minutes almost everything is cooked and raw smell goes, if you feel its too dry just add the 1tsp of oil and if you feel it has raw smell then keep it for 5 minutes, Then add the crushed kasthuri methi leaves and add the lemon juice and saute. Adjust salt if needed. If you like to add the chopped spring leaves add at the last stage and close the lid and off the flame.
Aloo Gobi1

  • Any spices can be used it and customize the spices as per family choice. 
  • Make sure the raw smell goes before you add the kasthuri methi leaves and lemon juice. 
  • Adding lemon juice is for tangy flavor ,  you can omit if you do not want. 
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Vazhaipoo Thogayal Recipe ( Banana flower Thogayal)

Its been long i posted my Grandma recipes (patti) , i have already talked about her enough in here and here. In her life time she has not tasted  the onion and garlic and some few English veggies too. I have no idea why she has not take those healthy onion and garlic , i never questioned her too about the rituals she followed :) I was very small girl. So when she was with us even we have not tasted or cooked the onion and garlic at home ! . On top of that ,she was healthy till 87 yrs, last two months only she suffered . So after her death only my amma started including onion in her cooking but no garlic. Later due to circumstance and friends i adopted taking both , till date except functions i cook onion and garlic regularly. 
Oke enough about the story, coming to today's recipe, its banana flower thogayal  i.e thick chutney which is usually served with Hot Rice and ghee/ gingely oil. we have to mix the thogayal with Hot rice drizzling either ghee / oil.  The taste is too good, and you feel like having more. usually my patti use her small hand grinder, with out water she use to make. Plus she never grind like paste,  she make it coarse. Which has the little crunchiness from the vazhaipoo. Usually my grand ma add coconut where as my mother wont add coconut, But adding coconut has advantage of compensating the  pungent/ astringent taste {thuvarpu/karipu} . It has one disadvantage , Cleaning part . I seriously feel lazy for that , But knowing the benefits of vazhaipoo , the pain i spend for cleaning is nothing. 
So whats up , try this thogayal and let me know . ! 


Check out my other Vazhaipoo recipes too 

Vazhaipoo kuzhambu (south indian style) - Serve it with Hot Rice and pappad. Its very healthy. 
Vazhaipoo poriyal(stir fry south indian style) - Great accompaniments when you serve with sambhar and hot Rice . 
Vazhaipoo Vadai - Thats a good starter :) you keep munching :) 


Preparation Time : 40 minutes
Cooking Time : 20 minutes
Servings - 3 ppl


Cleaned Banana Flower - 1 1/2 cup (chopped)
Urad dal -  2 tbsp
Coconut - 1/4 cup shredded
salt - as required
Hing - a pinch
oil - 2 tbsp
Red chilly - 6 to 7 (depends on the family spice taste adjust)
Tamarind - a pinch


First clean the banana flower , by removing the two part from each flower! I have clearly captured the removing part of the flower , you can see in the below picture. just remove those part
Then finely chop the flower, if you are going to take time of chopping then a tbsp of curd in the butter milk will remain the color of the chopped flower after the cut.

Heat the kadai and pour the 1 tbsp of oil and once heat saute the red chilly and transfer it to the plate , in the same oil saute the urad dal saute till it turns in to semi brown and transfer it to the plate. Now add the remaining oil and saute the chopped Banana flower, till its half cooked,  this take little time and keep stirring the chopped flower for easy cooking , once everything sauteed then cool down completely and grind it along with coconut ,tamarind , salt and hing. You can either grind it like paste , or else coarsely grind too. just Sprinkle some water do not pour

I preferably grind into coarse so that i can mix it with Rice, drizzle some ghee or gingely oil Divine taste.


  • If you are going to use it for 3 to 4 days then saute the coconut too. It gives nice shelf live.(if you store it in the fridge)  
  • Adding coconut, will compensate that pungent/ astringent taste in the banana flower. 
  • If you like garlic you can add for the variations too. 
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Baby Corn Fritters (oven Roasted)

Day are gone where we struggle to get back to the college friends and school friends , If at all we get to know , we never get opportunity to share everything we missed from college and schools. Now the technology upgrade , we can easily track our friends through facebook and from there we can interact through whatsapp too :) Thats how i got to know my college friends whom i missed exactly 10 years. 

Now we formed a group and daily interaction and chores its seriously lovely to get in touch with them . All are married and settled :) on top of that we do discuss more about food and recipes , thats how i got to know this baby corn fritters (oven roasted ) from a college friend Ramya. i got tempted from her picture and recipe and tried my hands with few variations it came out very well , as she mentioned it was crispy outside and inside its soft , i served along with Kebab Dip . I seriously loved the guilt free starter. AFter gobi i can assure this is one such healthy recipe, Though we cannot compare with fried ones taste, But health wise its too good , believe me over all i have used some 1tbsp of oil. 

Thank u so much Ramya ,  i completely enjoyed the recipe ! 

Check out my other baby corn Recipes /oven Roasted recipes

Baby corn Jalfrezi - An apt side dish for phulka, naan mild pulao
Baby corn Gravy - Which can be served for phulka,mild puloa
Oven roasted Mushroom - great appetizer. 
Tandoori Gobi - Great starter  very apt for weight watchers. 

baby corn

Preparation time : 1 hour (includes marination time )
Toasting Time : less than 30 minutes
Servings - 2 members


To Grind :

Pepper - 2tsp
Mint leaves - 8 strands
Garlic - 4 large size
Green chilly - 1 nos
Salt - as required
Olive oil - 1/2 tsp
Fennel seeds - 1/2 tsp

To Marinate:

Baby corn - 10 nos
Gram flour - 2 1/2 tbsp
Corn flour - 1 tbsp
red chilly powder - 1 tsp
Cumin powder - 1 tsp
salt - as required
Water -  just to sprinkle.
Oil - 1 tbsp
baby corn


Remove the skin of the baby corn and wash it , Then cut in to two halves and boil it till its 3/4th cooked. Then strain the baby corn completely.
baby corn

 Now take the to Grind ingredients and grind it nicely, Then take the paste and add the gram flour , corn flour ,red chilly powder, cumin powder along with salt, if you make a paste fine else sprinkle some water and tbsp of oil. make a nice paste. And  add the strained baby corn and coat it completely and allow it to idle for 30 minutes.
baby corn

After 30 minutes ,Take the oven tray and keep the baking paper and arrange baby corn in order. If needed you can brush it with oil too again . Pre heat the oven for 20 minutes as per the oven need.Then toast it for 20 - 30 minutes at 200 degree Delius . after first 10 minutes, turn the baby corn to other sides, so that it evenly toasted .

Once the corn is crispy and color changed , remove it from the oven and it can be served with green chutney or some kebab chutney.
baby corn

  • Do not use the tender baby corn use medium baby corn, which gives nice crispy corn. 
  • Spices can be adjusted as per family need. But do add mint leaves, it gives extra flavor. 
  • If you are doing large batch , toast it in two batches. 
  • It can be made in advance and before serving you can re heat the toasted baby corn. 
  • Mine got ready in 25 minutes so keep eye after 10 minutes. 
  • Using medium size baby corn gives nice crispy fritters outside and little soft inside. 
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Yellow Watermelon Juice (with sabja Seeds) | Summer Drinks

Finally Summer started at chennai :) Wait wait its not even end of Feb, Still its hot , we could feel the summer vaccation :) , So as usual i will concentrate more on the juice, salad part  to beat the heat. Already i have got a packet of sabja seeds . So do you know what is sabja seeds ? if not .... 
It is other wise called as chia or tukmaria or dried basil seeds, It is often used in Ayurvedic and Siddha medicine in India.
(source of the info - from google) 
  • It is usually consumed during the summer days to coolant the body. 
  • Sabja seeds has soothing effect on the stomach
  • Its also good for throat and helps in digestion too. 
  • they are good for skin infections
Last week i went for grocery shop, i found this yellow melon, though i have tasted many times as such , i have not tried juices with it, this time i wanted to blog it too. So i got  the fruit and here with the recipe :) Pls do read the note section  and customize the recipe as per need. 

melon juice

Preparation Time : 10 minutes
Grinding time : 5 minutes
Yield - 2 long glass

Ingredients :

Watermelon - 2 cups
water - 1/2 cup
sugar - 1 tbsp
lemon zest - 1 tsp (highly recommended)
sabja seeds - 2 tbsp for each cup
ice cubes - optional
melon juice


cut the watermelon in to small cubes, and transfer it to the mixie jar and add the lemon zest sugar and water, grind it , then strain the juice completely.
melon juice

Take the Sabja seeds add 1 cup of water and wait for 10 minutes you can see the doubled up sabja seeds . Now take a 3/4 cup of juice and add the 2 tbsp of seeds and if needed add ice cubes and chopped watermelon..
melon juice

Serve it chill
melon juice


  • Adding lemon zest is highly recommended , you surely find the difference. 
  • If you do not want sugar , you can cut off.
  • I got yellow melon, if you have that red melon you can try with same.
  • i have not added ice cubes , as i feel sabja itself is coolant. 
melon juice

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Vegetable Stew (ishtu) Recipe | Appam Side Dish

This is first time i tried vegetable stew at home , thought i have tasted this twice. Remember my Masala vadai post ? that was prepared for the the apartment potluck function there one neighbor aunty made potato stew it was good with white rice and idly . When i tasted i asked her what is this ? her pronunciation was like ishtu in Malayalam slang. It was very good in taste,  after that i wanted to try at home .  some have i couldn't make it.  I have tasted this in one restaurant , it was sweetish to the core i have no idea why the restaurant served like that. But when i made at home , it was good , i could smell the flavors, nutmeg taste and its blend nicely .

A stew is a prepared by cooking the vegetables in the coconut milk and adding the mild masala's , it has both veg and non veg options. It can be done with single vegetables or combination of vegetables too. Usually veggies are cooked in thin coconut milk later to get the gravy consistency thick coconut milk is added. But here i have already boiled the vegetables to half, and added the thin coconutmilk. It is well go with Appam and idiyappam. This is a very simple Side dish with loads of flavors from bay leaf , cinnamon , ginger garlic paste plus nutmeg. Do try and let me know


Preparation Time : 20 minutes
cooking time : 20 minutes
Servings - 3 to 4 ppl

Ingredients :

Ginger garlic paste  - 2 tsp
green chilly - 3 nos
nut meg - 1/2 tsp scrapped
bay leaf - 2 medium size leaves
cashews - 7  nos
cinnamon - 2 small sizes
onion - 2 medium size
salt - as required
boiled vegetables - 1 cup
thin coconut milk - 1 1/2 cup
thick coconut milk - 3/4 cup
coconut oil - 2 tsp


Soak the cashew in the water for 20 minutes and grind in to smooth paste , then add this paste to thick coconut milk along with nutmeg powder . Then boil the needed vegetables and strain the water. And get ready with the chopped onion green chilly ginger garlic paste . plus thin coconut milk.

Now heat the kadai and add the oil once hot, add the bay leaf along with cinnamon and saute for 30 seconds. Then add the green chilly saute it then add the chopped onion saute till its half cooked, then add the ginger garlic paste and saute till raw smell goes.

Then add the boiled vegetables along with thin coconut milk. allow it to boil , once everything blend nicely, adjust the salt and add the thick coconut milk and give a nice stir , boil till the desire consistency occurred

It can be served for appam , idiyappam and to south indian dosai too.  I made the stew lightly thicker , so i was able to take it with plain Rice.



  • Usually vegetables are boiled in coconut milk , i do not want to add more coconut milk so i boiled and added, its your option to choose. 
  • I wanted light stew thats why increased the thin coconut milk to 1 1/2 cup . other wise usually people add equal proportion of thick and thin .
  • Do add nutmeg its give extra flavor. 
  • You can also make stew with choosing only one veggie . 

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Chikoo Rava Kesari (Sapota Kesari )

I make Kesari very very rare at home , last time i made this for a bajan at home After that i do not make it , its not that we do not like it, I do not get any opportunity to make it . :)oke  ..thats an excuse i know. So i went  out with my hubby for valentines day , while dinning out in sangeetha restaurant Adyar, he ordered for Kesari , and it was chikoo rava kesari , First i fell in love with the color, it was very appealing and nice. second Taste , its just delicious and melt in mouth . One thing i concerned was the amt of ghee that oozes from the sweet , Otherwise it was the wonderful easy sweet. 

While coming back, rajesh asked why do not you make it one more time , with less ghee.So i got the chance to make and blog too:) i loved the color again .i rarely get chikoo from shop as we are not big fan of this fruits , but its good when i tasted in kesari form . So i thought i should try other recipes using Chikoo instead of taking it as such . Planning for milkshake what else can be made ? just update it in the comments section. 

If you like semiya kesari , then check it here 

chikoo Kesari

Preparation Time : 5 minutes
Cooking Time : 20 minutes
Servings - 4 to 5 people


Sapota/chikoo fruits - 4 medium size
Sooji / Rava  - 1 cup
Sugar - 3/4 cup
ghee - 3 tbsp
nuts - few to garnish
Water - 2 cups
Elachi - as needed for flavors.

chikoo Kesari


Dry roast the rava if its not roasted one. Then peel the skin and remove the seeds and cut in to medium size cubes, and grind in to smooth paste.
chikoo Kesari

Heat the kadai and pour one tbsp of ghee, once its hot add the grind paste of chikoo and keep the flame in medium , stir it occasionally till its cooked, it will take less than 7 minutes, Then pour the 2 cups of water and allow it to boil completely.
chikoo Kesari

Once the water boils, add the Roasted rava slowly and keep stirring so that it wont form any lumps, once added , keep the flame in the slow mode, and cover it . 5 to 7 minutes it will get cooked. add a tbsp of ghee give a stir,
chikoo Kesari

Then add the sugar (at this stage if you like elachi it can be added )  and  stir it , now you will see the semi liquid kesari , but keep stirring it , automatically you can see the mass of kesari and will not stick in to the kadai, Mean while temper the kesari by adding the ghee in the separate kadai  and fry the cashews,  transfer the mixture to the kesari. Off the flame .
chikoo Kesari

It can be served as per your choice either you can shape it or put it in the cute bowl and garnish some nuts on the top
chikoo Kesari

  • Since i wanted the chikoo flavor, i have not added the elachi powder. purely optional. 
  • I have not added any colors , because i want the natural color from the chikoo. 
  • If you are a sweet tooth do add 1 cup of sugar , Because my proportion was perfect sugar,  not over sweet, 
  • I have used the double roasted Rava so i have not roasted it separately , if you are going to the use the normal rava , do roast it in ghee before you adding. 
  • If you like more fruits flavor you can add 2 more chikoo totally 6 instead of 4. 

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Saravana Bhavan cauliflower chops Recipe

Saravana Bhavan White koorma is hit in this space, i got a great reviews from my readers , neighbours and family members, who tried and tasted , updated me saying thats 100% match with restaurant style :) One such reason i wanted to try their chops recipe, which they provide with Appam and idiyappam :) but it will well go with idly dosai , paratto and poori too . This time i never say its 100 % perfect recipe ! But i can assure i am close to 90% , because i am missing the creamy gravy ,though it matches with taste, consistency. I will keep trying till i get the perfect one ! Also i will update in this space

If you are not aware of what is chops recipe , its nothing but our usually koorma prepared using only cauliflower , potato with masala's, it will be perfect with the south indian tiffin items like appam, idiyappam, poori, idly and dosai. whenever i visit saravana bhavan i always order idiyappam to taste this chops recipe, only in the evening they provide this , morning they usually provide the white koorma. i am so happy that i have two great recipes from the restaurant in my blog . if you love koorma i am sure you love this chops too. Go head. ! waiting for your review ! 

Try my other koorma/ kuruma recipe too 

cauliflower chops

Preparation Time : 20 minutes
Cooking Time : 40 minutes
Servings - 3 to 4

Ingredients :

Oil  - 1 tbsp
butter / ghee - 1 tbsp
Cinnamon stick - 2 small pieces
fennel seeds - 2 tsp
mint leaves - 4 to 5 small leaves
Onion -  3 medium
tomato - 3 medium
ginger garlic paste - 1 tbsp
Cauliflower  - 1/2 cup
Potato - 1/2 cup diced
salt - as required
Turmeric powder - 1 tsp
Garam masala powder - 2 tbsp
Red chilly powder - 2 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 tsp
salt - as required
Coriander leaves - to temper

To grind :

Coconut - 1/2 cup shredded
Fried gram - 2 tbsp
Fennel seeds - 1 tbsp
Poppy seeds - 2 tsp
green chilly - 2 medium size
Cashews - 8 nos

cauliflower chops


Boil the cauliflower along with potato by adding the required amt of salt, mean while Grind the onion and tomato separately and make  a paste .
cauliflower chops

Heat the kadai and add the oil  and ghee once hot add the cinnamon saute for 30 seconds then add the fennel seeds saute for 30 seconds. Then add the mint leaves. saute till raw smell goes, add the grind onion paste saute till raw smell goes .
cauliflower chops

Then add the ginger garlic paste and give a nice stir. once the raw smell goes add the tomato paste and adjust some water and stir well , once everything blend add the spices and salt and give a nice mix.
cauliflower chops

Once tomato cooked well with spices add the boiled veggies and adjust the gravy consistency by adding water adjust salt. too . allow it to boil and mix completely . Mean while grind the ingredients given under " to grind" . Make a smooth paste. by sprinkling some water.
cauliflower chops

Now add the paste to the gravy and give a nice mix and stir well , wait till it reaches the gravy consistency ! finally temper it with coriander leaves.
cauliflower chops


  • You add clove and elachi to this gravy ! but i am afraid of using it in the savory so did not  use it . if you love those flavors do add. it  .
  • We are adding green chilly and other spices too do plan for the family taste you can very well customize the measurement. 
  • Make sure you are sauteing the veggies well till raw smell goes othewise entire gravy wont be good. 
  • Do not add carrot and beans veggies it become different taste, adding cauliflower and potato itself is enough. 

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