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Swetha's Fusion
Where there is Fusion there is Creation!

Coconut Ladoo with Condensed Milk - Quick and easy recipe

Saturday, October 21, 2017

When short on time during festivals, I reach for Condensed-Milk. Always have a stock of at least one can in my pantry. This is one of such festive-sweet recipe, which turns out very delicious and just melts in your mouth. If you have all the ingredients, it takes less than half an hour to make these yummy ladoos. Remember the ratio is 2:1, that is, for 2 cups of Coconut, you need 1 cup of condensed milk.

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup - tightly packed fresh grated coconut
  • ½ cup - Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • ½ tsp - Ghee 
  • 1/2 tsp - Elachi/cardamom - freshly crushed powder.
  • 2 tbsp - Cashew nut - chopped into pieces 
  • 2 tbsp - grated dry(or fresh) coconut 
Method:
  1. On low heat  add ¼ tsp of ghee to a wide fry-pan. 
  2. And chopped cashew nuts and slightly roast them.
  3. Transfer the roasted cashew to a plate and keep aside.
  4. To the same pan add freshly grated coconut and turn the heat up to medium. Saute it to remove excess moisture. Do not let it brown. This may take about 2 to 3 minutes depending on how tender the coconut is.
  5. Add the condensed milk and mix it well on medium heat for about 3 to 4 minutes until the mixture thickens. 
  6. Lower the heat, add  ghee, cardamom pdr and roasted cashew-nuts.  Mix them all and keep stiring
  7. When you notice that the mixture does not stick to the pan any more, turn-off the heat.
  8.  On a flat plate spread the grated dry coconut for rolling the ladoos.
  9. You need to work while the mixture is still warm. Apply ghee on your palm, so that the mixture won't stick to your palm or burn. Pinch out the coconut mixture and by rolling your palms together form small lemon sized balls.
  10. Roll the ball in the dry coconut and place it on a tray or a container line with parchment paper.
  11. Repeat the steps 9 and 10 with rest of the cooked coconut mixture.
  12. This should yield about 20 ladoos.  (small lemon sized)  
  13. Store the ladoos in refrigerator. Should last for 3 to 4 days. 

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~ Coconut Ladoo with Condensed Milk - Quick and easy recipe ~
Posted by Swetha @ 10/21/2017 03:03:00 PM :: 0 comments

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Kosambari

Sunday, October 15, 2017
Kosambari is a Karnataka dish. It is salad made with Hesaru-bele/Moong-dhal/Split-Green-gram. It is offered to god as Naivedyam during festivals especially for Rama Navami, also served as side dish during functions. 

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup - Hesaru-bele/Moong-dhal/Split-Green-gram
  • ½ cup - Fresh Grated coconut
  • ½ cup - Cucumber - finely cut (optional)
  • ¼ cup - Carrot grated (optional)
  • ¼ cup - Fresh coriander/cilantro leaves - chopped
  • 2 - Green chillies (or to taste)
  • 2 tsp - Lemon juice
  • Salt - to taste
  • For Tempering (optional)
    • ½ tsp - Mustard seeds
    • 2 springs - curry leaves
    • Pinch - Asafoetida
    • 1 tsp - Oil
Method:
  1. Preparation: Soak moong dhal in enough water for at least 2 hours.
  2. Drain the soaked moong dal and place in a colander for a few minutes. Once the water is fully drained, place the moong dal in a large bowl.
  3. Add the chopped cucumber, grated coconut, grated carrots, slit/cut green chillies and half of the coriander leaves and mix well. 
  4. Add salt and lemon juice. Note: if cucumber is used mix salt just before serving as cucumber leaves water.
  5. Optional tempering: Heat oil in a small pan. Once it turns hot, add the mustard seeds and allow to splutter. Add the asafoetida and curry leaves and saute for a few secs. Turn off the heat. Pour this seasoning over the moong dal and mix well. 
  6. Garnish with rest of the coriander leaves and serve.

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~ Kosambari ~
Posted by Swetha @ 10/15/2017 07:09:00 PM :: 0 comments

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Mangalore Buns

Saturday, October 14, 2017
 Mangalore Buns are one of my favorite evening snacks my mom used to make. These are not baked but deep fried instead. They are fluffy sweet pooris(puris).  There are prepared as breakfast dish or evening snacks. This is one of the snack you could make when you have really ripe bananas at home which no one wants to eat. In my case, I will let the banana ripe to make this dish.

Ingredients:
Method:
  1. Peel and slice the bananas. Add them into a mixer/blender along with salt and sugar. Blend them into a fine paste. You may mash all these in a bowl using your hands.
  2. Transfer the banana paste into a mixing bowl, mix-in the curds, and baking powder.
  3. Heat 1 tbsp dalda/vanaspati or ghee or cooking oil in a tempering pan and keep it aside.
  4. Add maida/plain flour to the mixture in the bowl little by little and knead it into a soft dough. When you have a sticky dough, add in the melted dalda and knead well.
  5. Add in more flour if needed to make a nice dough that doesn't stick to your fingers completely. But we don't need a hard dough. We need a wet, soft, sticky, rubbery dough. (softer than chapathi dough). Note: Do not add any water while kneading the dough. Sugar when mixed with banana and curds gives out enough water to knead this dough. If needed add more curds or buttermilk.
  6. Spread bit of oil over the dough to keep it moist and prevents drying of the outer layer of the dough.
  7. Wet a thin cloth or paper-towel, squeeze out all the excess water, cover the dough completely with this damp cloth and allow it to rest at room temperature for 7-8 hours. The wet cloth helps retain moisture during rising of the dough. Make sure the cloth isn't too wet and is just damp enough.
  8. After at least 6 hours, lightly knead the dough before you role them out. Make tiny lemon sized balls of the dough, roll it out a little using flour to dust. Don't flatten the balls too much, keep them thick. This dough does not roll into round shapes so I use one of my glass bowls to press it into all even round shapes. You may use a cookie cutter too.
  9. Heat oil for deep frying, test if the oil is rolling hot by dropping a small piece of dough. If the dough emerges on top of the oil, that means the oil is hot enough. Lower the flame to medium heat.
  10. Dust excess flour off the rolled pooris and fry them one at a time on medium flame. As soon as you drop the pooris into the oil they puff up beautifully, flip them over, keep them pressed under the oil for few seconds, that helps the puri puff up more.
  11. Once they are cooked on both the sides and are golden brown, remove the poori from the hot oil and place it in a bowl lined with paper towel to drain out extra oil.
  12. Mangalore Buns will last for few days in air tight container. Difference between regular poori and Mangalore Buns is soft fluff inside which resembles a bread -see picture below.

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~ Mangalore Buns ~
Posted by Swetha @ 10/14/2017 05:33:00 PM :: 0 comments

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Weekend Beading



 


The above beads used for making the earrings, I first painted with nail enamel over black beads to make them unique. I propped the beads on a Styrofoam board with toothpicks for painting.







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~ Weekend Beading ~
Posted by Swetha @ 10/14/2017 04:39:00 PM :: 0 comments

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Weekend Beading with Wooden beads

Monday, October 09, 2017
  This is first time I am working with wooden colorful beads. 
I am happy that I can turn them into ethnic designs.





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~ Weekend Beading with Wooden beads ~
Posted by Swetha @ 10/09/2017 04:22:00 PM :: 0 comments

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Karela Bhaja/Fry

Monday, October 02, 2017

Kerala Bhaja or Bitter Gourd fry is a Bengali side dish commonly eaten at the beginning of a meal mixed with rice. Here is the recipe I learned from my mother-in-law with bit of my own twist.

Ingredients:
  • 2 - Bitter gourd / Karela
  • ½ tsp - turmeric powder
  • ¼ tsp - funnel seeds / Saunf 
  • 1 inch piece of cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp - red chili powder or black pepper powder (optional) 
  • Salt - to taste
  • 2 tsp - Oil
Method:
  1. Wash and cut the bitter gourds into thin round slices.
  2. Mix in turmeric powder and salt with the cut bitter gourd. keep aside for 5 to 10 minutes
  3. In a flat fry pan, add the oil and turn the heat to medium.
  4. To the hot oil, add funnel seeds and cinnamon piece. May also add a red chili for this tempering.
  5. Once the seeds splutters, add the bitter gourd. I usually spread the pieces flat on the pan and cover it for 3 to 4 minutes, then turn the pieces around to cook on the other side. You may also saute until it is cooked. 
  6. Serve hot with rice. The best way to eat it is to squeeze the cooked bitter gourd and mix it with rice and eat at the beginning of the meal to get all the health benefits of bitter gourd.

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~ Karela Bhaja/Fry ~
Posted by Swetha @ 10/02/2017 08:14:00 PM :: 0 comments

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Almond-Butter Spread

Tuesday, January 03, 2017
Here is my own recipe for a healthy bread-spread you and your family will enjoy. A good alternative for peanut butter or other sugar or corn-syrup loaded spread. I got my inspiration for this recipe from couple of traditional dishes - Baklava and Athirasam 
All the ingredients has its own health benefits. Almonds are packed with vitamins, minerals, protein, and fiber. Honey is a blend of sugar, trace enzymes, minerals, vitamins, and amino acids that has antibacterial, anti-fungal, and antioxidant properties. Honey has helped me a lot in reducing my seasonal pollen allergies. Found out consuming local honey works best as the bees interact with the local vegetation.  

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup Almonds
  • 1 tbsp Raw Honey
  • 1 pod cardamom (Ēlakki/Elachi)
  • 1 cloves (Lavaṅga/Laung)
  • 1 small piece Cinnamon (Dālcinni/Daalacheenee) 
  • 2 black pepper (Kaalu meṇasu/Kalee mirch)
  • ¼ tsp Ginger powder 
  • Optional - Nutmeg/Jāyikāyi powder and Saffron/Kēsari - a pinch
  • Optional - Brown sugar /Jaggery (Bella/Gud) - to taste
Method:
  1. Soak Almonds for at least four to five hours.
  2. Remove and discard the skin. Spread the almonds on a towel for about 10 mins to remove water  moistrue out.
  3. In a mortar, dry grind the spices (cardamom, cloves, cinnamon and black-pepper) into fine powder.
  4. In a blender or food processor, make almond paste. It is hard to get smooth paste, coarse consistence will do. 
  5. Transfer the paste in to  a bowl. Mix in the ground spices and ginger powder. Now add raw-honey and mix it all together. Note: You may blend ground spices and honey in the blender itself, but I found out it is difficult to clean the blender after that. I usually mix all together in the container I intend to store the spread and keep.
  6. Optional : may add jaggery, brown-sugar or sugar according to your taste... more sweet; Mix in pinch of nutmeg powder and saffron.
  7. Stored in refrigerator will last for a month.
  8. Enjoy your morning breakfast with toasted bread or croissant with homemade almond butter spread.
Tips:

  • For your child's lunch-box, spread this mixture on cooked Chapathi/Roti and roll it in to tubes for easy munching. 
  • This mixture may be used as stuffing for other dishes like Modaka, Kadabbu, Dilkush/Dilpasand, turnovers, puff-pastries (especially Danish Bear Claw : recipe ) etc.,

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~ Almond-Butter Spread ~
Posted by Swetha @ 1/03/2017 10:03:00 AM :: 0 comments

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Jola/Jowar Chakli

Sunday, January 01, 2017

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups Jawar ka atta / Sorgum Flour
  • 3/4 cup yogurt
  • 1 tbsp Oil/melted butter
  • 1 tbsp Sesame Seeds
  • 1 tbsp Red Chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp Coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Hing
  • Turmeric/Haldi - 1/8 tsp
  • 1/4 tsp Carom seeds / Ajwayan
  • Sugar - 1 tsp
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Oil for frying
Method:
  1. Take jawar flour in to a bowl.
  2. To that add red chilli powder, hing, coriander powder, oil, salt, sesame seeds, carom seeds.
  3. Mix very well.
  4. Then add yogurt and start to knead that in to a dough.
  5. Then add water and make that in to a stiff dough.
  6. Now divide dough in small cylinder shapes so that it will fit in to a chakali mould.
  7. Now start to make that in to chakali shapes on to a wax paper or clean wet towel. I use wet paper towel. Or if you don't care for the shapes, press directly into the hot oil. Just be careful. 
  8. Now deep fry chakali until it gets deep golden color.
  9. After chakali cools down store that in to a air tight container.
You may want to check out Muruku recipe too

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~ Jola/Jowar Chakli ~
Posted by Swetha @ 1/01/2017 10:48:00 PM :: 0 comments

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Kadale Kalu Usli


Kadale Kalu Usli / Kadle Usli / Channa Sundal - all different names depending on the different regions. This is a south-Indian dish prepared as offering (naivedyam) during Ganesha Pooja. A Festive food, but it is one of favored snack in our house. May be prepared with Kabul Channa (Garbanzo beans/ Chickpeas) but I prefer the Black or Green Channa / Kappu Kadle kalu or Hassiru Kadle kalu. 

Ingredients:

  1. Kari Kadale Kalu / Channa /Garbanzo / Chickpeas 
  2. Chili powder
  3. Lemon Juice
  4. Coconut
  5. Kadi Patha (curry leaves)
  6. Mustard
  7. Asafetida/Hing
  8. Salt
  9. Coriander (cilantro)


Method:

  • Soak Kadale/Garbanzo over night. Note: No need to soak if you are using canned chickpeas.
  • Wash and pressure cook with salt and water. Let it cool. Drain and keep aside.
  • Take 2 tsp., of oil in a pan and heat it on medium hot. Add mustard seeds, Curry leaves and asafetida. 
  • Once mustard starts to crack, add cooked Kadale/Channa to it. Mix in salt and chili powder to taste . After 2 minutes of stirring, add grated coconut.
  • Remove from the fire and garnish with lemon juice and chopped cilantro.



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~ Kadale Kalu Usli ~
Posted by Swetha @ 1/01/2017 12:50:00 PM :: 0 comments

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Khara (Spicy) Mangalore Buns


Mangalore Buns are one of my favorite evening snacks my mom used to make. It is prepared as breakfast dish too. They are fluffy sweet pooris(puris). But when it comes to pooris, my hubby does not like it sweet, so here is my version of spicy and savory Mangalore Buns.

For the original Mangalore Buns recipe, add more sugar (5 tbsp or to taste) and skip - chilli pdr, turmeric and coriander leaves.


Ingredients:
  • 1/2 kg maida/all purpose flour/plain flour
  • 2  ripe  bananas (fully ripe soft banana's are the best to use)
  • 1 tsp  sugar
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder (or Eno Fruit Salt - unflavored one) some use baking soda too.
  • 2 tbsp curds
  • 2 tsp cumin(Geera) seeds
  • 2 tsp red chilli pdr
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric(Haldi) pdr
  • 1 handful of chopped coriander/cilantro   
  • Oil for deep frying
  • Extra flour for dusting

Method:
  1. Peel and slice the bananas. Add them into a mixer/blender along with salt and sugar. Blend them into a fine paste. You may mash all these in a bowl using your hands.
  2. Transfer the ground banana paste into a mixing bowl, add in the curds, turmeric pdr, chilli pdr, cumin seeds, chopped coriander leaves and  baking powder and mix well. [Optional: ginger/garlic paste or Garam-Masala or one of your other masala may be added too]
  3. Heat 1 tbsp dalda/vanaspati or ghee or cooking oil in a tempering pan and keep it aside.
  4. Add maida/plain flour to the mixture in the bowl little by little and knead it into a soft dough. When you have a sticky dough, add in the melted dalda and knead well.
  5. Add in more flour if needed to make a nice dough that doesn't stick to your fingers completely. But we don't need a hard dough. We need a wet, soft, sticky, rubbery dough. (softer than chapathi dough). Note: Do not add any water while kneading the dough. Sugar when mixed with banana and curds gives out enough water to knead a dough. If needed add more curds or buttermilk.
  6. Spread bit of oil over the dough to keep it moist and prevents drying of the outer layer of the dough.
  7. Wet a thin cloth or paper-towel, squeeze out all the excess water, cover the dough completely with this damp cloth and allow it to rest at room temperature for 7-8 hours. The wet cloth helps retain moisture during rising of the dough. Make sure the cloth isn't too wet and is just damp enough.
  8. After at least 6 hours, lightly knead the dough before you make buns. Make tiny lemon sized balls of the dough, roll it out a little using flour to dust. Don't flatten the balls too much, keep them thick. This dough does not roll into round shapes so I use one of my glass bowls to press it into all even round shapes. You may use a cookie cutter too.
  9. Heat up oil for deep frying, test if the oil is rolling hot by dropping a small piece of dough. If the dough emerges on top of the oil, that means the oil's hot enough. Lower the flame to medium heat. If the oil's not heated up yet, wait for another 3-4 minutes.
  10. Dust excess flour off the rolled pooris and fry them one by one on medium flame. As soon as you drop the pooris into the oil they puff up beautifully, flip them over, keep them pressed under the oil for few seconds, that helps the puri puff up more.
  11. Once they are cooked on both the sides and are golden brown, remove the poori from the hot oil and place it in a bowl lined with paper towel.


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~ Khara (Spicy) Mangalore Buns ~
Posted by Swetha @ 1/01/2017 11:36:00 AM :: 0 comments

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