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jihvarice.jpgUrad dal vadai is made in the same way as the recipe already posted for thayir vadai. The only difference is to make a hole in center before frying. Soaking in curd is optional.

For details of pooja and Kozhukattai recipes click here.

For Raw Rice Idlies click here.

Appam

I have prepared the appams in a kadai,(the big ones) as well as the appa kuzhi (small ones).

Appam

Ingredients

  • Raw Rice – 1 cup
  • Urad dal – 1 teaspoon
  • Grated coconut – 2 table spoons
  • Jaggery – 3/4 cup
  • Cardamom – 1 no
  • Oil – 1 cup for deep frying

Method

  1. Wash and soak the rice and urad dal for 1 hour
  2. Grind to a smooth paste adding very little water.
  3. Add the jaggery and coconut and grind to mix well.
  4. Add cardamom powder.The batter should be like dosa batter.
  5. Heat oil in a kadai on a medium flame and pour ladle full of batter in the center of the kadai.
  6. Smear oil on the appam using the chattuvam (slotted spoon). Once the appam rises turn slowly. cook both sides till brown.
  7. Drain the oil and take out on a kitchen paper.

You can also make the appams in a appa kuzhi.

This appam is my entry for JFI Rice event hosted by Sharmi of Neivedyam. I’ll post the pictures when I prepare the prasadam tomorrow.

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Plagiarism can be very entertaining at times – I think I quite like the bit where one is negotiating and putting pressure on the person who grabs your content and uses it without attribution. Perhaps it has to do with my social science background where even if an “a” written or professed by someone is to be borrowed, one needed to attribute with the minutest of details of authorship that go beyond the author’s name.

What was entertaining about today’s brush with plagiarism was the fact that it actually resulted in a new recipe – workable or not is of course a different question.

The plagiarised post by Nausheen initially resembled this recipe from the Yum blog word to word and used the pics , but then it progressively changed with every comment I left at regular intervals.

The proportions of the three flours used for making Pani Puris first changed drastically. Then poor wheat flour was shown the door. In the next edit the quantity of maida dropped and Kabuli Channa gave way to sprouts. Subsequently dates went thrown out of the pani and the whole spices substituted with powdered ones. A pic was removed. The most innovative edit of course was the inclusion of soda in the recipe.

Here’s the link:

http://pakistani-hot-recipes.blogspot.com/2007/08/chatkharay_21.html

Update: She seems to have removed the post and interestingly also turned off comments on her blog.

I have no idea what state this is in right now. The last I saw the recipe had changed but she had retained one pic from my post.

I dint even want write about this today (thinking that perhaps she did it out of ignorance) – but I seek attribution want her to remove that pic, even if her blog may be small and even if this may be insignificant to my larger goals in life. Repeated requests in comments dint work (she deleted most religiously) and hence this post.

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Update: Four Varieties of Kozhukattai (steamed stuffed rice flour wraps) have been given below. We prepare this for Ganesha Chaturthi. Scroll down for recipes.

I humbly Offer this to the lotus feet of the Supreme Mother Goddess Raja Rajeshwari.

VaralakshmiViratham is Observed by most families in south India. Varam is boon. Varalakshmi is the goddess who bestows upon her bhakthas, health, wealth, prosperity, joy, peace, etc.(Ashta Aishwaryam).

Though as Iyengars my family does’nt observe this festival, being a devotee of the goddess Raja Rajeshwari I always perform a simple Varalakshmi puja on this day. I have collected details of puja procedures from my neighbour, an Iyer aunty, Mrs.Rajam Sunderajan. Thankyou mami!

On thursday, the kalasam is made and decorated as Amman. For the kalasam you can use a jar or sombhu made of silver, bronze or brass. Even mud pots were used for kalasam in olden days. Fill the pot with a little rice, toor dal, 4 betal leaves, 2 betal nuts, 2 turmeric pods, a 1 rupee coin, 1 lemon. place 5 different kinds of leaves or 5 mango leaves on the mouth of the pot and cover with a coconut that is smeared all over with turmeric powder(manja thengai).

I also read in Devi Bhagavatham another method to make the kalasam. You can fill the pot partially with holy water from any river and place some gold jewellary. cover the mouth of the pot with 5 mango leaves and a coconut smeared with turmeric.

If you have a ambhals Mugam(Face) you can attach it to the kalasam. you can also draw the face of Goddess on the kalasam.If you have a statue of the goddess You can decorate that for the puja. kalasam is further decorated with jewels and silk saree. All this is done in the puja room or a place at home where you want to do the puja. Manja pongal is prepared as prasadam on thursday. At the beginning of the puja Devi is invoked in the Kalasam (Aavahanam). From now we will refer to kalasam as Devi. The devi can be placed on a special platform(mandapam) decorated with Vaazhai kannu or young plaintain trees and maavilai thooranam.

The method of making the kalasam varies, you can stick to the method passed on by your family. Devotion and faith are most important for the puja.

On friday, the day of varalakshmi puja, the front yard is cleaned and decorated with kolam(As we do everyday). Devi is carried from the front door to the puja room and placed in the Mandapam.

Now the Kalasa pujai, archanai, ashtothra pujai and charadu pujai are performed by a sasthrigal(purohit). If you live in a place where you cannot invite a purohit you can do the puja yourself. puja CDs are easily available. Neivedyam is performed.(offering).

The charadu(yellow thread) is worn in the wrist and the purohit is honoured with sambavanai (Vaayanam).*Thambhulam is distributed to ladies.

On saturday punar pujai is done for the Devi and the neivedyam offered is sundal. Thambulam is distributed to ladies. This culminates the puja.

On saturday night after Deeparaadanai the kalasam is kept in the rice pot for a day.

May the world be blessed by the Goddess Vara Maha Lakshmi!

I humbly request The Devi and all my visitors to forgive any mistake in the procedure.

The neivedyam prepared on the day of the puja are

  1. Kozhukattai (kadubu, moodak) prepared with 4 variety poornams (fillings)- which has been posted below.
  2. Appam
  3. Vadai
  4. Idli made from raw rice.(Paccharisi idli)

All recipes will be posted in a day or two.

Kozhukattais steamed in crystalwave Mw dish
Sweet Kozhukattais/ Modhaks steamed in the Microwave. Green container is perforated and the yellow is filled with 1/2 cup water

Kozhukatai(Modhak)

Ingredients

For the outer cover

  • Rice flour -3 cups
  • salt to taste
  • Water 3 cups
  • Oil – 1 table spoon

For the Coconut filling

  • Grated coconut – 1cup loosely packed
  • Jaggery – 1/2 cup
  • Cardamom – 1 no

For the sesame filling

  • Sesame seeds (Til) – 1/2 cup
  • jaggery – 1/2 cup
  • cardamom – 1 no

For the urad dal filling

  • Urad dal – 1/2 cup
  • green chillies – 1 no (finely chopped)
  • curry leaves – 1 twig(finely chopped)
  • Oil – 1 table spoon
  • Hing – 1/4 teaspoon
  • salt to taste
  • mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon

For the channa dal filling

  • Channa dal (kadalai paruppu) – 1/2 cup
  • jaggery – 1/2 cup
  • cardamom – 1 no
  • Grated coconut – 1 table spoon

Method

For the outer cover

  1. Bring the water to boil in a heavy bottomed pan.
  2. Reduce the flame to medium and add the oil and rice flour and stir well to get a smooth dough.
  3. Take off the flame and mix further to remove lumps thouroughly.
  4. Cover and allow to cool.

For the Coconut filling

  1. Melt jaggery with a little water, in a kadai on a medium flame.
  2. Add coconut and cardamom powder and cook for 2 minutes.
  3. The filling will become thicker when it cools.Transfer to a container.

For the sesame filling

  1. Dry roast the sesame seeds till they crackle.
  2. Allow to cool and grind in a mixer.
  3. Mix with powdered jaggery and cardamom.

For the urad dal filling

  1. Wash and soak urad dal for 1/2 hour.
  2. Drain well and grind coarsely adding salt and hing adding 2 table spoons water.
  3. Heat oil in a kadai and add mustard seeds.
  4. when it crackles add the curry leaves, green chillies and the ground urad dal.
  5. Cook on a low flame stirring well for 3 minutes. Urad dal will be cooked by now.

For the channa dal filling

  1. Wash and cook channa dal with 3/4 cup water on a medium flame till all the water is absorbed and channa dal looks translucent.
  2. Allow to cool and grind to a powder.
  3. Add the coconut, jaggery and cardamom powder and grind to form a dough.
  4. Keep in a microwave safe glass bowl and micro for 2 minutes stirring in between.

How to proceed

  1. Make 1 and 1/2 inch diameter balls out of the rice dough. Shape it into a cup with your fingers.
  2. Place 1 teaspoon of the prepared filling and cover to form a modhak shape – i.e bring all the end of the cup together. You will get a round ball with a cone on top.
  3. Make these modhaks or Kozhukkatais with all the fillings.
  4. Steam in a pressure cooker without weight for 3 minutes. You can place the kozhukatais on an idli stand to steam.
  5. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before removing from the cooker.
  6. Your kozhukatais are ready for neivedyam (offering to Lord Ganesha).

Update: To see the microwave version of steaming head over here.

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We’ve started a new series of events on Festival Cooking. We’re a family that loves festivities – no we dont have grandiose celebrations neither do we indulge in sweets like we’ve never tasted sugar before.

But festivals give us the opportunity to celebrate the lovely little things in our culture, bond with neighbours and friends, wake up to white rice flour patterns on baked red earth (or even kolam on mosaic or tar road) , drown in the smell of camphor, be mesmerised by the golden glow of sesame oil lit lamps, sink our teeth into delicious goodies and end meals with a classic natural digestive or some such remedy for all the feasting 😀

Festivals are born out of human beings’ need to congregate and escape from the routine of life for a while. Most importantly without doubt one is left with a clean fresh home at the end of festivals because the preparations call for cleaning.

We’re hosting the first of the series here – starting with Srijayanthi that is on September 4th. Thanks to the logical arguments of our fellow food bloggers – we’ve postponed the deadline to submit entries to September 10th.

For Details on submission, head over here.

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krishna.jpg
Image courtesy of Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International.
Update: You can include any photo of Krishna or this as part of your entry if you like.

Hi friends,

I am just enjoying the blog events! So decided to host an event for Srijayanthi or Janmashtami. You can prepare any sweet or snacks or noorukku theeni like murukku, seedai etc. No onion and garlic please.

Srijayanthi is on 4 september. All bloggers and non bloggers can participate. If you do not have a blog, you can email me with a small photo and written recipe directly and they will be posted here.

1. Email me at naralatha@gmail.com , your entry with your name, your blog name, blog url, and your permalink on or before 4th september.
2. In your post, please include a link back to the event post to complete the circle.

3. The deadline for the entries is September4th 2007.You can send more than one entry also. Update: Deadline for entries postponed to September 10th 2007.

My blogger friends please help me out by posting your valuable advice as I am totally new. Participate in great numbers and make it a success.

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On 7th morning Deccan Herald I saw the picture of Taj made of roses with the announcement for the flower show from 8th to 15th of august. I decided to visit on a working day to avoid the maddenning rush (Stampede?).

As Tajmahal is voted to be one of the 7 new wonders, the horticultureral department decided on this theme for our 60th Independence day. There was a huge crowd on Friday afternoon also but fairly manageable. The Taj looked stunning. It was definitely a visual treat. It was an 18 by15 feet structure made using 26,000 roses! An amazing feat indeed! Hats off to all the artists who who put together this beauty.

There is a saying in tamil “yaam pettra inbham ,peruga evvaiyagam”, (Share your joys with the world ). I posted these pictures for all the Indians living all over India and world to share my joy.

Happy Independence Day!

Click here for Taj Pictures in roses 

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Taj Mahal in red roses
Taj Mahal in Red Roses

Taj Mahal
Taj Mahal in Red Roses

Sputnik in flowers
Sputnik in Flowers

A Pair in flowers
Floral Pair

A Pair in Flowers at Lalbagh
Floral Pair

The Annual Flower Show at LalBagh is always a delight for flower enthusiasts. Will post in detail later. For now, enjoy these photos.

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