Sunday, March 30, 2008

Brinjal chutney

Lunch Box
Chapathi,Brinjal chutney and cabbage curry .

Brinjal chutney is new to me .It is not a konkani recipe and i had never tasted it backhome or at any of my friends placein india.A few months back when my friend P's in laws had come to stay with them,her mom in law had made this .P got it for me in a bowl and asked me to guess tasting it.I could not guess it though the very instant i liked the taste of it.I asked her mom in law for the recipe and forgot to note it down coming home.I am not sure about the origin of this recipe i liked it so felt like sharing it.
Brinjal is called NASU in japanese and available all the time in vegetable shops.It is long purple ones found in regular markets.Thai brinjals green small ones are found in chinese markets,which i buy once a month when we friends plan to go there.It is a summer vegetable here as it cools the body.No much takers in my house as both son and father dont have a liking for the vegetable. I buy a pack and make only aloo baingan out of it.So I made this chutney remembering and trying all the ingredients that i add for ridgegourd chutney .I also tried searching in some websites.Hubby says brinjal tastes better this way.yes here it is yummy brinjal chutney making its way into his lunchbox .To be accompanied by cabbage upkari,for can have the chutney with rice and dal too.

For chutney u need:
Brinjal-2 (purple long ones)

green chillis-2


urad dal2 tsp

mustard -1/2 tsp
jeera-1/4 tsp
garlic-4 flakes

tamarind-small marble sized

tomato-small half

turmeric powder-1/4 tsp

salt-as per taste
oil -for seasoning

asafoetida-less than 1/4 tsp

Wash and chop the brinjals into squares,and put them in a bowl of fresh water.keep them dipped for a while.

Heat oil for seasoning ,add mustard ,green and red chillis,hing.,garlic flakes.Add chanadal when it turns light brown add uraddal.saute and add brinjal pieces squeezed out of water.

add salt and turmeric powder.close lid and let it cook without water added for 5 minutes

open lid add tomatoes.saute again and close lid.let it cook for few minutes till lid and check if brinjal is it and grind to smooth paste with tamarind.

Finally season with heating oil.add mustard seeds,and curry leaves.This step is optional.

u can serve and also store for two to three days in fridge.

Friday, March 28, 2008


Describing tokyo to someone who has never been here is really difficult.when someone asks how is it ?i just cant find words.what i like about it so much cannot be given with a word.I began to like it slowly and began to fall in love with it.

The most important part is i began to appreciate nature and its beauty.without makeup...

The seasons here make it more special and also the way the people treat the seasons.
Be it fall or spring they love to go with their families to huge parks which adorn tokyo.

Spring is a season they look forward fro the cherry blossoms (SAKURA) to bloom.They go to view them and they call it HANAMI(HANA=flower ,MI=see)in japanese.People here make it a point to have their lunches packed ,and sit below the widely spread blooms and enjoy the lunch or dinner underneath.First time i felt this strange, imagine we going and sitting below mayflower tree and having lunch backhome....

But now its a part of our life ,we like all others waited the flowers to bloom ,had our picnic baskets packed ,searched for a place in the crowd where we could spread our sheet and had the delight of sharing the happiness of the season.

Sunday, March 23, 2008



My childhood memories are refreshed with this crunchy sweet stuffed delicacy.My grandparents would visit us in summer sometimes .And they would carry two big aluminium dabbas with them .one filled with nevri other with chakkuli or tinglod.I would wait for mamama(maternal grandmother in konkani) to open the dabbi and arrange them on plate.My granny would call it karanji and as it was a new name for me i would call it karinj ,even today when I made it, I called her and told i made karinj mamama.
Its made mainly during diwali and ganesh festival.As most of my friends here were making gujiya (as they call in hindi for nevri) for the holi festival i too got into the mood of making it.

To ask the ingredients i had called amma and noted it down.She told to give it to her grandson more. yes he had them and liked it because they had raisins.


MAIDA--2 cup

SUGAR-1 cup





COCONUT-2tbsp fresh or frozen.

OLIVE OIL-1tbsp for kneading

OIL -for frying

SALT -1/4 tsp

CARDAMOM-5 warmed in microwave


For the outer cover.

Sieve maida ,add salt to it.Heat olive oil and add to it.Knead it with water into a stiff dough.Keep aside for half an hour with a wet cloth or wet kitchen paper.

For the stuffing

Powder grind the sugar with cardamomseeds.clean poppy seeds under running water in a tea sieve, and spread on a kitchen towel.

Dry roast cashewnuts, fried gram (hurigadle) and poppy seeds .the poppy starts real poppy at this point. close a lid.for a second.and switch off the flame.

roast coconut grated till pink and remove.

roast raisins with little olive oil or ghee for nice aroma.

grind the cashewnuts and fried gram .combine the powders,coconut,poppyseeds and raisins with sugar.
The stuffing is ready.

Make 1" balls out of the dough.Flatten each into thin circles.
place a teaspoon of the stuffing in the left half and wet the edges with water.wrap over the other end and close it to a the edges.
make a batch of 10 likewise.heat oil in a deep pan.and fry them both sides till light gold.finish the dough and stuffing in batches if doing alone.thats wat i did.

remove and drain on a papertowel to absorb the extra oil. when cooled store in airttight containers.munch them for a week or more if they are left.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Few minutes on air

Soon after coming to tokyo i began to miss the radiocity backhome in bangalore.I would turn it on in the morning and it would be going on till the time we sleep.I got so much used to it that i felt tokyo silent.And wud sing on my own at home to kill the silence.not that i didnt have music cd's but was much hooked on to radio's nonstop RJ's .

A little search on the net and tips from some friends we got online radio.but among all of them we liked the radio dubai city 101.6.It was superb.It had the groove.Its been more than 2 years now since we started to hear.i know u wilbe finding it wierd me sitting in tokyo and listening to dubai radio.I like RJ kritika and had written her a mail long back which she had promptly replied.So yesterday she had a show fro international listeners.she said we can send an email and she wud call us back.I sent my mail and phone number and here she calls me.

Nervous though ,it was an exhilarating experience.I still cannot believe i spoke to her on air 5 and half minutes.Hey krithika thanks.



This is a dish prepared during upvaas or fasting.when u cannot have onion garlic in u r menu.Made solely from potato ,a simple and tasty dish.
Amma makes it during shivrathri.we dont eat rice ,onion garlic on that day.There are different methods in different regions for shivrathri . and also recipes for vrath.
and the best part is we end up eating more than the normal days on the fasting day.
She makes chapathi ,puddi bhaaji,ragi juice,and shevai paaysu.Not to forget a huge watermelon,bought and consumed the same day.Will post ragi juice once i learn it from her this time in india.


Curry leaves-a sprig
cilantro-for garnishing
fresh or frozen coconut finely grated-1 tbsp
fresh lemon juice-2 tsp
green chilli-2
hing-1/4 tsp
turmeric powder-a pinch
salt to taste.
oil-for seasoning


steam potatoes in cooker.Not too soft.remove,peel and powder it with hands such that small bite sized lumps are formed.
Heat a kadai with oil for seasoning.add mustard,jeera,hing,urad dal.
when dal turns pink add green chillis.turmeric powder.Immediatly next add the powdered potatoes.mix well.add salt,saute and sprinkle little water .close the lid.
let it cook for 5 to 8 minutes ,mixing in between.add grated coconut.
finally sprinkle lemon juice ,mix once again and turn off the heat.garnish with cilantro.
u can have it with rotis.also goes well with rice and dal.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Somen in spinach tomato broth

The first thing coming to japan that worried me the most was the food.Had heard from many friends that it is not spicy as indian food,but my hubby after having a welcome japanese dinner went on and on about the delicacy.Being a seafood lover this was a place we could make the most for our tastebuds.Yet i was a bit reluctant when he said going out for a japanese lunch.believe me after lunch i felt an immense pleasure of tasting japanese food.Its been three years now and japanese food has made a place in my kitchen.thanks to my wonderful friends here who taught me the recipes.I indianised some of it accordingly as a token of indo japanese friendship.

My son loves any japanese dish.As long as its either vegetarian or seafood.

This is one of his favorites. Somen in hot broth of spinach and tomato ,with a flavor of miso makes this simple and delicious dish a perfect winter food.

Here is the recipe

Dried somen noodles-1 bundle

spinach-half bunch


miso paste-3 tsp

sesame seeds-fro garnishing

onionhal small and chopped finely


Boil enough water for the somen noodles.Add somen when at a rapid boil.Stir noodles briefly to separate.Cook for 2 minutes, then taste a noodle. It should be soft but not mushy.Immediately remove the noodles and plunge them into cold water.Run under cold water until noodles are cold and seperable.

meanwhile prepare miso soup cooking tomato ,onion and spinach with one cup water.when cooked add miso paste,mix well. swith off the flame before it boils.

Add the cooked soup on on a bowl of somen.garnish with powdered sesame seeds.serve hot.


Yes finally i made it.Burfis are something that i am not good at.I have been trying to make a perfect burfi from a long time ,and everytime i end up with pieces that are very tasty but cannot be passed as burfis.It takes place somewhere between duddali and burfi.Either too soft or hard and chewy ,u keep licking the stuff like son loves that way so that he can hold it for a long sweet tooth runs in the family finishing it off has been no problem for me.Hubby says" no probs its sweet right!".

Hmm..Amma told me keep trying it and u will make it perfect one day...and so did my freinds here.They got used to this varieties i make called burfis...and one day i make it .yippeee..

Yummy and easy coconut burfis were a bit chewy as i had added milk and the constant stirring had made it like khowa.But they were

here is the recipe

coconut milk -200 ml

milk -200 ml

sugar-100 g

ghee-2 tbsp

cardamom powder

I used tinned coconut milk here ,could not make much difference with the original burfi.


Arrange all the required ingredients near stove.Grease a deep dish plate with ghee .

Heat a kadai .add both the liquids .add sugar and keep stirring continuosly till the water evaporates and it forms into a lump in the center of the took me about 20to 30 minutes on medium heat.take care not to char it .the mixture changes color from white to cream .

add ghee on top mix once and switch off.transfer it to the greased plate.flatten it with a rolling pin.cut once it comes to managable it .And its ready to be hogged.

My hubby and son loved it.I am gonna try again with other burfis and yes and post them too.