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Friday, October 13, 2017


How-to-make-porous-mysore-pak, How-to-make-crunchy-mysore-pak
The traditional porous mysore pak is a melt-in-mouth sweet made during festivals, functions and marriages. When I was young, elders at home made these type of mysore pak only. Being in Coimbatore, I can still remember the days when Krishna sweets soft mysorepa (I mention it as mysorepa and not mysorepak) was introduced. Elders would say, "Mysorepagunna kara karannu vaaila potta karaiya vendamo? Ennamo po" i.e., Mysorepak is meant to be crunchy and melt in mouth instead of being soft. Krishna sweets mysorepa is known for its taste and easy making though. 

Traditional mysorepak is a challenge to make. It requires continuous attention. I generally post stepwise pictures only for most needed recipes, because I don't have any assistance and some recipes need timely click. This is one such recipe.  Unfortunately, there was no power and the weather was also very gloomy. I had to be really fast and I couldn't click the final busy seconds, as I was concentrating on the right texture. Still, I have clicked with available light and to my might for easy understanding. As I felt it would be helpful/useful to all if I wrote the minute details and tips, it really took long time to write this post than making mysore pak.😃

How-to-make-porous-mysore-pak, How-to-make-crunchy-mysore-pak
Gram flour / Besan  - 1 cup
Ghee - 1 1/2 cups OR 
A mixture of Ghee - 1 cup  and oil -1/2 cup 
Sugar - 2 1/2 cups
Water - see method


Grease a tray with ghee and keep ready.

Sieve besan and keep it ready near the stove. (Some people dry roast besan). 

How-to-make-porous-mysore-pak, How-to-make-crunchy-mysore-pak
Take sugar in a thick bottomed kadai, add water, just to immerse the sugar and make sugar syrup for soft ball consistency. If you add a drop of syrup in a small plate of water, you should be able to roll it to a ball, without dissolving in the water or you can check the syrup with your index finger and thumb to get a thick, long one string consistency.  Meanwhile, melt ghee+oil mixture in another stove, in medium flame and keep it ready too. When you get the sugar syrup consistency, put the flour little by little in it, simultaneously add a ladle of hot melted ghee also and stir it non-stop without any lumps. 

NOTE: THE GHEE SHOULD BE REALLY HOT. Keep an eye so that it doesn't get burnt. A mixture of oil and ghee as mentioned in the ingredients, is safe and best to use as it prevents quick burning. It was really like multitasking. 😍

Each time when you pour the hot ghee mixture, the mixture hisses and frothes and you can see air bubbles. Pour the ladle of ghee in such a way that it spreads all over the mixture.These bubbles finally turn into beautiful pores and makes the mysore pak porous. This is the secret of porous mysorepak. 
How-to-make-porous-mysore-pak, How-to-make-crunchy-mysore-pak
Stir continuously in medium flame. Repeat the process until besan and ghee is finished. When the whole mixture becomes frothy, leaving the sides of the kadai (need not become a mass) switch off the flame and quickly transfer the mixture to a greased tray. Just tap the tray to get a uniform surface. (Do not press with a spatula to even the surface).  Wait just for a couple of minutes. When it is still hot, run a greased knife to get the desired shape. Allow it to cool and then take out the pieces.

Traditional, porous, crunchy mysore pak is ready. 😅😋

You can see the air bubbles in this picture.👇👇
How-to-make-porous-mysore-pak, How-to-make-crunchy-mysore-pak


how-to-make-manoharam-with-oosi-thenkuzhal, how-to-make-manoharam
Manoharam is a South Indian sweet made during festivals and functions. Manoharam in Tamil means beautiful. There is a practice of giving manoharam paruppu thengai (cones) as seer during brahmin marriages and family functions. Usually it is done with thenkuzhal. My mom and grandma makes this with oosi thenkuzhal. I have posted oosi thenkuzhal recipe earlier. For a change I also made it with oosi thenkuzhal and the sweet will be an easy bite even for elders.


Oosi thenkuzhal crushed -  5 cups
Crushed jaggery - 1 cup

Ghee - to grease hand
Cardamom powder - 1 tsp.

NOTE: There is no hard and fast measurement for jaggery syrup. Just add syrup to bind the thenkuzhals. Adding more will make this manoharam soggy because oosi thenkuzhal is very thin.


Crush oosi thenkuzhal into small pieces in a bowl and transfer to a wide plate. 

Crush and powder  jaggery. Dissolve in half a cup of water, strain without any dirt or mud.

Heat jaggery and make soft ball syrup out of the jaggery. Drop a little of jaggery syrup in a cup of water, and using your hand try making a soft ball. This is the perfect consistency for the jaggery syrup. Add cardamom powder. Mix well.

how-to-make-manoharam-with-oosi-thenkuzhal, how-to-make-manoharam
Add jaggery syrup to the crushed thenkuzhals. Mix well with a spatula. Grease your hands with ghee and make rough balls out of it.  When still warm and tighten and shape to even sized balls. 

Delicious Oosi thenkuzhal manoharam is ready.

Thursday, October 12, 2017


Kurkuri bhindi is a perfect tea-time snack which is made with ladysfinger/okra. 'Kurkuri' is 'crisp' in Hindi. 

Recently I received a request to review Philips Air fryer. I accepted the opportunity as I can try out recipes with new products and give my honest opinion about the performance of the product.  

Philips has introduced their Viva Collection Air fryers. The product which I received was Turbostar which cooks with rapid air technology. Philips claims tasty frying with 80% less oil. The product comes with a basket with an easy click handle, metal mesh and a recipe book.  Some accessories like grill pan, rack and baking pan can be purchased from their store.

I personally feel that Airfryer is a good option for low fat cooking and can be a healthy start. Cooking in Airfryer is an alternative to deep frying as we can use little or no oil. Health conscious people can prefer air-frying instead of deep frying.

Whenever I buy a new gadget/appliance, I think twice and ask myself, whether it is worth to get it? As regards Air fryer, I always had the doubt if it actually fries in air? Now, having used it, I can say it is nothing but a small oven. Unlike the convection oven, we can make only small quantities. You can fry, bake, grill and roast in Philips Air fryer. Philips Air fryer is small but heavy. So, keeping it on counter-top would be safe.  Easy to clean. As I cook only vegetarian, there is no unpleasant odour while cooking.

Disclaimer:  This review is done on request from Philips. The opinions are based on my personal experiences. Use your own discretion before buying the product.

What all can be made?

I have been using this for sometime now and tried some recipes. Masal/paruppu vadai, Kaarakari, chips, roasts, cutlets, baked samosas, biscuits/cookies, muffins, buns, bread etc. can be made. However, when I asked the demo person, about making poori and  poricha appalam, he said poricha appalam can't be made as sit is very light and will be blown away by air. So, I did not take the risk of trying it. We can't make poori also. DO NOT TRY appalam or pappadam by brushing oil, as it is very light and will get blown away by the air. Click here for Ragi biscuits/Ragi cookies in Philips Airfryer.

Now I am sharing an easy to make Air-fried Kurkuri Bhindi.

Kurkuri bhindi is a perfect tea-time snack which is made with ladysfinger/okra. 'Kurkuri' is 'crisp' in Hindi. Usually, this is deep fried. As a healthier option, I made the bhindis in Philips Airfryer. I was able to break the bhindis and felt the crunchiness while eating. The pictures are pretty much self-explanatory. Anyway, the recipe also follows is how I made it in an Airfryer. 


Okra / Ladysfinger - 1/4 kg.
Besan/gramflour - 2 tablespoons
Rice flour - 2 tablespoons
Turmeric powder - 1/8 tsp.
Red chilli powder + Sambar powder - 1/2 tsp. + 1/2 tsp.
Black pepper powder - 1/4 tsp.
Cumin powder - 1/4 tsp.
Coriander powder - 2 tsp.
Garam masala - 1/2 tsp. 
Amchur - 1 tsp.
Oil - 2 tablespoons

Chat masala - to sprinkle
A dash of lemon juice


Wash and pat dry okra. Remove both the ends and slit vertically to four pieces. Mix all dry ingredients well. Sprinkle this over the slit bhindis so that it is fully coated and well blended. Add oil and mix again with your hand.
Preheat air fryer at 180°C for 5 minutes. Transfer the coated bhindis to the mesh and air fry for 15 minutes at 180°C. Take out the basket and toss in between. If necessary air fry / bake for a couple of minutes more until crispy. 
Yummy Kurkuri Bhindi / Airfried Kurkuri Bhindi is ready. Serve hot by sprinkling chat masala on top with a dash of lemon juice. Goes well with Rice and dal. A perfect snack with tea/coffee.

Be careful and keep an eye after 12 minutes.
Any masala powders can be added/substituted according to your tastebuds. 
Kurkuri bhindi can also be deep fried in oil. It can also be shallow fried.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017


This is an easy and delicious sweet made during festivals. Since 7 cups of ingredients are used to make this, the barfi is named 7 cup barfi / 7 cup cake. It tastes like traditional mysorepa (the one with pores), with an added flavor of cashews and coconut, when done crunchier. As I preferred it to be rustic in look, I made it crunchier. You can make it soft too. See the post for details. Even a novice cook can make this easy seven cup barfi. 


Gram flour/besan/kadalaimaavu - 1 cup
Cashew powder - 1/2 cup
Grated coconut - 1 cup
Milk - 1 cup
Sugar - 2 1/2 cups
Ghee - 1 cup


Sieve besan. 
Dry grind cashewnuts coarsely. Grease a tray and keep ready.

Combine all dry ingredients in a heavy bottomed kadai and mix well. Add milk and ghee, mix well without any lumps.

Now, keep kadai on the stove and stir continuously in medium flame. When the mixture starts to boil, reduce the flame to low and keep on stirring. After some time, the mixture will start leaving the sides of the kadai and start to froth
. Check by dropping a small drop in a plate. It should firm up. This is the consistency. Pour the mixture on the greased tray if you like a soft set burfi. Personally, I like it crunchy. To get it crunchy with rustic look, I kept the mixture on stove for a couple of minutes more. Even the surface gently with a spatula. When warm, cut into desired shape. 

NOTE: It can be done with 3 cups of sugar minus cashews. As I felt sugar would be more and also wanted it to be rich, I made like this. Any nuts can be substituted for cashews.

Monday, October 9, 2017


pumpkin seeds-and-nuts-ladoo, How-to-make-protein-ladoo,How-to-make-pumpkin-seeds-ladoo
Pumpkin Seeds and Nuts Energy ladoo / Energy balls can be made with or without added sugars. These are easy to make, simple and healthy and is very nutritious.

Pumpkin seeds 
(yellow pumpkin seeds, NOT ashgourd seeds) also known as Pepitas, are good sources of magnesium, pottasium and zinc. They aid in lowering cholestrol, promote good prostate and helps in boosting metabolism. They are loaded with Omega 3 fatty acids and the antioxidants found in pumpkin seeds assist in maintaining blood sugar levels and is helpful in preventing complications of diabetes. It is also helpful in menstrual disorders and insomnia. Though available, these seeds are bit costly in India. My son sent me these from U.S.

Recently, I received a Turbo chopper from Preethi Kitchen Appliances. Preethi Turbo chopper is an easy to use, handy equipment used for chopping onions, cabbage, greens and nuts. Dips and chutneys with tomatoes, herbs, etc. can also be made with this small chopper. It just needs one press and does its job fast. I have used this Turbo chop for making this energy ladoos. You can also use a dry mixer jar.


Pumpkin seeds - 1/2 cup (yellow pumpkin seeds, NOT ashgourd seeds)
Cashews - 1/2 cup
Almond - 1/2 cup
Peanuts - 1/4 cup
Roasted gram -1/4 cup
Raisins- 1/2 cup
Palm candy - 1/4 cup
Honey - 3 tablespoons
Nutella - 160 gms.
Ghee- to grease hands


Dry roast pumpkin seeds, cashews, almond, peanuts and roasted gram separately, on low heat until hot. If kept in fridge, bring to room temperature and then dry roast. 

pumpkin seeds-and-nuts-ladoo, How-to-make-protein-ladoo,How-to-make-pumpkin-seeds-ladoo
When cool, grind along with palm candy to a coarse powder. 
pumpkin seeds-and-nuts-ladoo, How-to-make-protein-ladoo,How-to-make-pumpkin-seeds-ladoo
Now add raisins, honey and nutella, whip until mixed well. 
pumpkin seeds-and-nuts-ladoo, How-to-make-protein-ladoo,How-to-make-pumpkin-seeds-ladoo
Transfer the mixture to a bowl. Grease hands with ghee and shape to balls, pedas, or squares. If cutting like square, transfer to a tray, press the surface evenly with a greased cup and cut into desired shape.

Thursday, October 5, 2017



This is an easy to bite, melt in mouth snack for all, especially elders.Its been done for more than 100 years in our home by my grandma, great grandma... patti, Kollu, ellu paattis. I have not seen anyone making these type of thenkuzhals in any of our extended families. But my grandma says, it was common on earlier days and said its name as oosi thenkuzhal. I suddenly remembered this and made. It can be done with regular thenkuzhal maavu. My recipe is as follows:

Click 👉for Thenkuzhal and Millet coconut milk thenkuzhal  recipes


Processed rice flour - 5 cups
Urad dhal powder- 1 cup
Salt - to taste
Sesame seeds - 1 tsp.
Butter - 2 tablespoons
Hing - 1/2 tsp.
Oil - to deep fry


Sieve the flour well. Combine all ingredients and mix well to get a crumbly texture.

Add water little by little to make a smooth, manageable dough. 

Heat oil in a wok. Make balls out of the dough and fill it in 'Omapodi achu' and press in a circular motion directly into the oil. Flip on both sides until done. When cool, store in airtight container.  

NOTE: This gets cooked fast, so be careful and do not fry in oil for a long time, else it will turn brown.  

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