Friday, March 21, 2008

Idli with coconut chutney

Update - This is the recipe for idli batter I followed when I used my Mixie to grind the batter.The proportions differ while grinding in a wet grinder.

I am always amazed when people say,"idli..??noooo".I wonder why people disliked such a tasty and wholesome breakfast.At my place,Idli was an all time favourite.My amma makes yummy soft,spongy and tasty.That's how I developed a taste for idlies.Idli with Sambhar and Chutney was the ultimate combo for breakfast.My ma-in-law on the other hand makes a different type of idli,tasty nevertheless!!She makes those granules type idlies which are melt-in-the-mouth types but has a granule texture to it.The difference lies in the batter,while my amma's batter is ground to a very fine paste,ma-in-laws' batter is ground to a suji/rava type consistency.No favouritism here..I love both!!;-)

When it comes to my batter,well..I follow both methods alternatively;-).This time I chose amma's type of idlies.There were no enough veggies to go into a Sambhar,so served them with just coconut chutney.


Raw rice - 1 cup
Urad dal - 1/2 cup
Fenugreek/Methi seeds - 1 tsp
Salt to taste


Soak rice and urad dal seperately for at least 4 hrs.
Soak the methi along with urad dal.
Grind urad dal to a smooth paste adding water little by little.
Similarly,grind rice to a smooth paste adding little water.
Mix both the batters well,add salt to taste.
Kep the batter for fermenting overnight.
This batter can be used for making idlies,as well as dosas.
If you are living in a cold climate and the batter did not rise well,do not make idlies because they will be very hard.Make dosas instead.
If the batter has risen well,mix the batter very lightly.
Take greased idli moulds and pour the batter into each mould filling only 3/4 of the mould.
Steam for about 15-20 minutes.
Wait for it to cool down a bit before taking them off from the moulds.
Steaming hot idlies are ready to be savoured!!!

P.S-In Kerala there is a saying which goes "thumbapoo polathe idli" meaning,idlies which look like a flower.To this date I don't know why idlies are compared to a flower and in what way they could be similar.But today when I saw the photos of idlies,I thought they looked like a flower..what say??;-)

Coconut chutney


Grated coconut - 1/2 of one coconut
Roasted red chilles - 6(3 byadgi chillies and 3 normal ones)
Tamarind - size of a channa/bengal gram/chickpea
Salt to taste
For seasoning-
Coconut oil-1 tbsp
Mustard seeds - 1tsp
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Hing/asafoetida(optional) - a pinch

Grind coconut,chillies and tamarind together till smooth.Add salt,grind again.
Transfer to a serving bowl.
Prepare seasoning in a pan with oil.
Add mustard seeds,when they start spluttering add curry leaves.
Add hing(if adding) and switch off the flame.
Add the phanna/tadka to the chutney and serve.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Eggless Dates Cake

Eggless Dates Cake

Baking/making a cake has always been a passion for me.Whenever I had those yummy cakes from bakeries or at some friend's place I used to wonder how can someone make something like this.My vanni(co-sis)makes amazing cakes.Whenever both of us meet up at our in-laws' place I ask her to make a cake just for the sheer pleasure of watching someone actually making a batter and pouring it into a baking pan and place it inside an oven and not to forget the aroma which comes out of the oven when the cake is being cooked/baked.I couldn't wait for the cake to cool down..I used to have it almost hot..fresh out of the oven.;-)

I did not have an oven,so making a cake was still a dream.Recently we got a microwave and my cake making dream popped up almost instantly.Along with the MW I got Nita Mehta's IFB MW Cookbook,so thought of trying out those yummies.But I've been waiting to make Shilpa's eggless date cake ever since I read her post about it.She has said that this cake is very easy to make and nothing could go wrong with it.So I thought why not this cake be the first ever cake to bake..??Off went a mail to my vanni who's an expert in MW cakes.She gave me the temperature settings and timings and Tadaaa..I BAKED MY FIRST CAKE!!! I was sooo happy..I've made this cake at least 4 times ever since..this cake is indeed a never-go-wrong cake.I think everyone should try it.

Eggless Dates Cake-ingredients

Eggless Dates cake


Seedless dates-18

Milk - 3/4 cup
Sugar - 3/4 cup(use 1 cup if you want the cake to be very sweet)
Maida - 1 cup
Oil -1/2 cup(I used sunflower oil)
Baking soda - 1 tsp
Cashewnuts,Walnuts - 1 tbsp(optional)


Eggless Dates Cake-step1 

Add sugar to the dates and grind them to a smooth paste along with the milk in a blender/mixie.
Add oil and blend/mix again.
Eggless Dates Cake-step2 

Sieve together maida and baking soda.
Add the maida-baking soda mix 1 tbsp at a time to the date mix and mix well.
Add the nuts and mix again.
Eggless Dates Cake-step3 

Pour the cake batter into a greased pan and MW it.
Directions-MW on 70-80% power for 7-8 minutes.
Do a toothpick test before taking out from the MW.

Eggless Dates Cake
Shilpa's tips-

PS: If you use ‘baking powder’ instead of ‘baking soda’, cake becomes a bit harder.
PS: The color of the cake largely depends on the dates used. I have made it with different varieties of dates and sometimes it turns out black and sometimes it is very light in color. So do not panic if your cake does not look exactly like mine.

Pictures updated on 11-9-12

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Dudhi Alchikeri -Pumpkin curry

Dudhiya Alchikeri is pumpkin in a coconut,dal based curry.Dont get confused by the name,this is a very simple dish to make.In Ernakulam,during aarat(temple festival which is celebrated once in a year) alchikeri is a common item on the platter or rather plaintain leaf on which the jevan/prasadam/annadanam is served.In fact,whenever I tell my hubby that I want to go to Ekm for aarat he teases me saying that I go there for the feast rather than to pray.I don't correct him coz it is partially true!!!

During the sambradan jevan/annadanam I wait eagerly to see whether alchikeri is served(festival and feast is there for 8 days,alchikeri will be there at least on 2 days).I gorge on it as though I've never seen food before;-)I do not even hesitate to ask for more..yeah!!hehe.

Dudhiya Alchikeri


Ripe pumpkin - 1 piece(I buy sliced pieces of pumpkin from the market,comes to about 150-200 gms)-cut into cubes with the skin on
Toor dal - 1/2 cup
Grated coconut - 1/2 of 1 coconut
Red chillies-3
Haldi/turmeric - 1tsp
Mustard seeds - 1tsp
Jeera - 1tsp
Curry leaves - 1sprig
Oil - 2 tsp


Cook toor dal in a pressure cooker for about 3-4 whistles(it shouldn't be fully cooked)
When it cools down open the lid and add pumpkin pieces and cook for another 3-4 whistles.
By this time toor dal and pumpkin would be fully cooked.
Make a masala of grated coconut(keep 1 tbsp aside for seasoning),haldi and red chillies.
It should be ground coarsely by adding very little water.
Add this to the cooked dal-pumpkin mix and let it boil,add salt to taste.
Prepare seasoning in a pan by adding oil,mustard seeds,jeera,curry leaves and coconut.
When the coconut starts getting brown,switch off the flame and add to the curry.

P.S-The curry tastes slightly sweet if ripe pumpkins are used.I used not so ripe pumpkins,so I added a small piece of jaggery for the sweet taste.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Sanna Polo -Drumstick leaves dosa

Polo,Dosa, many names..but once you have it,you wouldn't mind whatever the name in which it is called..after all "what's in a name..??"I doubt whether anyone would dislike dosa.It is an all time favourite for most people.There are so many varieties of dosa that you wouldn't know when to stop counting.I remember,in Cochin there's a dosa restaurant called "Pai's thattu kada".Its not exactly a restaurant,as in you cant find any fancy tables and chairs there.But you can be assured that the dosa's are coming straight from the tava,to your plate.When they started it,their speciality was "36 varieties of dosa".This was about 15 years back and I am sure they would have increased the number of varieties now.

Recently I saw a programme on NDTV where students from a reputed Hotel Management College were conducting a Dosa Mela and they had come up with 1055 varieties of dosa!!!After all,its all about creativity.If you love dosa you can come up with more than that number I guess.

Sanna polo is one such dosa.It is not the regular dosa which we can eat for breakfast with chutney.This can be had like an upkari/side dish which you can have with rice and dal.As in other dosas,this one too can be made in a variety of ways.As in,the batter is the same but the add-ons differ.Here I have added drumstick leaves.

Sanna Polo


Raw rice -3/4 cup
Toor dal -1/4 cup
Red chillies -6(3 normal and 3 byadige chillies)
Grated coconut-1/2 cup
Tamarind-Small piece
Drumstick leaves(Muringa ila)-a bunch
Asafoetida-1 tsp
Salt to taste


Soak rice with toor dal in water for about 2 hours.
Grind grated coconut,red chillies and tamarind to a fine paste.
Add the soaked toor dal-rice to the mixie and grind well.(the batter should not be too smooth nor too coarse).
Add salt and asafoetida and mix well.
Add drumstick leaves.
Keep the batter aside for about half an hour so that the drumstick leaves gets all soaked up in the ground batter.
Heat a greased dosa pan and make slightly thick dosas.
Pour a few drops of coconut oil(optional-you can add any oil of your choice),turn over,roast the other side also till brown.
Serve with brown rice(matta ari),dalitoy(dal)and pickle.

Another variation-Cabbage and Onion dosa-Add chopped cabbage and onions to the batter and there you have your cabbage and onion dosa!!

I am sending this entry to Srivalli's Dosa mela.

Check out the much awaited Dosa mela round up here-Part 1,Part 2,Part 3.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Batate Vaagu-Potato curry

Batate vaagu or simply vaagu is a curry I learnt from my ma-in-law.When she told me once that she has prepared vaagu with shevai/idiyappam I was like..vaagu..??(vaagu means tiger in konkani,so I was wondering whether I heard her right).Vaagu is a potato,coconut based curry which is served with shevai.It is very similar to batate song and batate humman. I was used to having idiyappam with potato stew ever since I could remember.So I was quite hesitant to try out this new combo..but boy..if I had not tried I would have missed this ultimate combo of blandish idiyappam with spicy curry.It is not as spicy as it looks because of the use of byadige/kashmiri chillies which give the curry its reddish colour.



Potatoes-3 medium sized
Carrot-1 medium sized
Tomatoes-2 medium sized
Red chillies-6(use 3 normal red chillies and 3 byadige chillies)
Grated coconut-1/2 cup
Coriander seeds-1 tbsp
Mustard seeds-1 tsp
Oil-2 tbsps
Curry leaves- 1 sprig
Coriander leaves- about 1/2 cup
Salt to taste.


Wash and peel potatoes and carrot and cut into small cubes.Pressure cook it for about 15 minutes or till well cooked.
Fry red chillies and coriander seeds in a little oil and keep aside.
Grind grated coconut with fried red chilies and coriander to a fine paste.
Prepare seasoning in a frying pan with mustard and curry leaves in oil.
Add the masala and tomatoes(cut into small cubes) and mix well.
Add the cooked potatoes and carrots and salt to taste.
Add more water if required.
Add the coriander leaves. Serve hot with Idiyappam/Shevai.

Thursday, March 13, 2008


Idiyappam/Shevai is one of the most common breakfast dish in Kerala.It is often served with thenga paal-coconut milk mixed with jaggery and ishtoo-potato stew.Soft idiyappams garnished with freshly grated coconut..oh yum!!!I absolutely love having this for breakfast.Hubby loves this with sweetened coconut milk.My initial attempts at making idiyappams were a big flop.There was a time when I almost gave up making idiyappam and started buying dried idiyappams.But then,in cooking there's no such thing called GIVING UP right?So I tried again and again and have come up with a foolproof recipe!!



Idiyappam flour-1 cup(I use Nirapara)
Water- 1- 1/4 cup
Oil- 1tsp
Salt-To taste
Grated coconut-1/2 cup


Take the idiyappam flour in a wide pan and add salt and oil.Mix well.
Boil the water and add to the flour little by little.Mix well and close the lid.
After it cools down a bit knead it into a smooth dough.Make small balls of it and keep aside.
Grease the idli mould and idiyappam press with coconut oil to prevent sticking.
Take one ball at a time and put into the idiyappam press to make idiyappam.
Add 1 tsp grated coconut to each mould.
Steam in an idli cooker or steamer for about 15-20 minutes.
Allow it to cool a little bit before taking them off from the idli mould.
Serve with potato ishtoo/stew or Vaagu.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Broccoli Stir Fry

My first post..will start with a healthy one!!Health Food-Naay.Broccoli-No way!,this was how I reacted before.I always believed that food should be what if there's loads of butter whats if there's loads of sugar added?I never cared for such things and no wonder my health went for a toss and I put on kilos of weight without even realizing.When I was required to lose all that weight,I was forced to go on a healthy diet which I followed strictly.I fell in love with the tasty and healthy alternatives for all that fatty food and my body is thanking me for it!!

Broccoli Stir Fry


Broccoli -1 medium sized-cut into florets
Onions-1 chopped into cubes
Mushrooms-10 chopped into four pieces
Stir fry sauce-2 tbsp(It can be substituted with 2 tbsp soya sauce and 1 tbsp tomato sauce)
Oil-1tbsp(preferably refined oil)
Salt and Pepper-To taste


Wash Broccoli florets well in hot water.
In a Wok/Kadai pour 1tbsp oil and fry onions on high flame till they become slightly brown in colour.
Add the mushrooms and fry till mushroom loses its moisture.
Add the broccoli and mix everything well.
Add the stir fry sauce,salt and pepper.Mix well.
Keep stirring till the broccoli gets cooked-it takes approximately 5 mts.
Serve it on a bed of lettuce leaves.

This dish can be had as a meal by itself along with a salad.Broccoli is high in folic acids and is very good for health.Works well if you are a weight watcher!!


Hello all

This is my first post on the blog and I want to thank some of my fellow bloggers who are my greatest inspiration in starting this blog.Its been a long long time since I wanted to start a blog and I've been putting it off for quite some time now.Every time I read food blogs, I feel I should start writing one too,but at the very next second I feel I wont be able to pull it off.I am trying to overcome that feeling and I am going to start writing my first post.But before that let me thank the people who inspired me the most.

Shilpa of Aayis Recipes -Its from her that I learned to make authentic Konkani delicacies.Also she is my biggest inspiration for learning to bake cakes,thank you Shilpa.

Roopa of My Kitchen Treats-Hers is the first food blog I've ever read and she is the one who opened the doors of food blogs to me,thank you Roopa.

Srivalli of Cooking 4 all seasons-Reading her blog is like hearing your best friend talk to you!!I've tried so many of her recipes and all have turned out to be superb.Especially her Microwave dishes and North Indian ones.Mention Srivalli and how can I not mention her famous Paneer Butter Masala..??Thank you Srivalli.

Shn of Mishmash -Thank you Shn for your wonderful recipes and your story about the crocodile pool;-) which set me thinking -maybe I can start a blog too..?!

Injipennu of Injimanga -T
hank you inji for your amazing recipes of Kerala food and your guess games!!

I once again thank you all for being my inspiration and I hope I can carry this blog forward a long long way!!

Saturday, March 1, 2008

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About Me

Who am I?

I am Divya,a foodie at heart and a passionate cook.I love cooking and trying out new dishes in my kitchen.The joy I get from reading recipes and figuring out whether it would work or not and finally trying it out gives me an immense high.Every recipe published on this blog is tried and tested/tasted.

A li'l Background!

I was a complete novice in kitchen and just like girls my age,started cooking on my own after getting married.Boy,I was completely taken aback and saluted my amma for cooking up a variety of food day in and day out for us monster kids.I struggled to cook and we had similar looking/tasting food for days together.But slowly and steadily,I picked up the art.

My Lifeline!

Ajay,my husband has been a completely supportive partner to me in this regard.He kept giving me little tips and tricks here and there and I found myself enjoying my time in the kitchen.Moreover,anyone can take cooking seriously when the food they cook gets appreciated.The joyful look on people's faces when they eat my food,makes it all worthwhile.
My all-time love!

Baking is something I learnt sometime back and there's just no stopping me now.I love to see the glee on my loved ones' face when I bake a cake for them:).I've always loved writing and my food blog combines two of my passions-cooking and writing:).
What do I blog on Easycooking?

I blog about day to day recipes.Mainly Konkani food,in that too,a mix of Kochi Konkani fare and South Kanara[Mangalore]fare.With a dash of Kerala recipes and a bit of North Indian food too.Given my love for baking,some of my successful baking recipes would also feature now and then.

My Camera

I started blogging with no clue about food photography or rather photography in general.The initial pics were taken using my phone(then) W810i.I started using Fuji Fine Pix Z10 and then got myself a Canon Ixus 105.I am planning to get myself an SLR,all in good time.

I love collecting Cookbooks and am a proud owner of several baking books as well as books of cooking from other genre.Many of the recipes published here are from these books[always given credit],some from my Vanitha recipe collection,some from tv cookery show recipes and some from other blogs[with link to the original blog added].Traditional recipes from Konkani cuisine are provided by my amma and m-i-l.

Hope you enjoy your stay here as much as I've loved putting it across to you:). :). Thank you for visiting my blog and hope you would come back again!!

For Food products/Book reviews,contact me at


I was Featured on! 
Easycooking on Print Media!

Easycooking was featured in Economic Times.

My recipe for Palak Pathrodo was featured in Vanitha-March 1-15 edition.

My recipe for Ragi Neer Dosa was published on Hindu Metroplus.

Easycooking on Deccan Chronicle[Kochi edition]

Easycooking featured as one of the six most followed food blogs in Chennai on Indulge(Indian Express,Chennai edition) on May4th. Photobucket

Much Love,

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