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Monday, January 18, 2021

Pacha Kapplanga(Omakka) Halwa | Raw Papaya Halwa (Step by Step Pics)

How fast is time flying? We have crossed half a month since New Year and I had been quite busy since Christmas vacations. If you ask me what kept me busy, I don't have one particular task to list down but ever since we visited families at both homes and then last week we visited home again which was like an unexpected visit in a short time. All these with a few things here kept me busy and so hardly found any time to pen down my thoughts. Drafts are pending to be posted but I hardly get time these days with both kids online classes. Most of the time the laptop is with them so I keep ignoring my space due to time constraints. Anyways these are a few lame excuses but still when it comes to prioritizing, I do shift my blog as the last one to update. 

Coming back to today's post is a special halwa made with raw papaya. Sounds strange? Then how about a lauki or doodhi halwa. It tastes almost the same like the lauki halwa. The natural color of this halwa is a light sea green color and to your surprise none will guess the veggie used in this halwa. Back home in our backyard, there are plenty of papaya trees and I have made it a habit of plucking a few each time I go home. Few goes in making papaya thoran or raw papaya pullisery or ripened ones are had as fruit. This time I thought to give a change to the usual preparations with raw papaya as kids don't like this veggie much. So making halwa was a good way to finish the raw papaya however I wouldn't recommend making halwa is a good choice to get the nutritious benefits of papaya as there is use of granulated white sugar. And as I just said my family couldn't guess the veggie and they happily devoured this halwa. I made half portion of a big papaya and that halwa just finished in minutes. The grated papaya is cooked and reduced considerably so you hardly get a cup of halwa after cooking. The strands are cooked nice and are coated with sweetness, milk adds to the taste as well. Cardamom adds a nice flavor to get the desi feel. Adding khoya(mava) will make the halwa more delicious. So if you are looking around for some sweet raw papaya recipes then go ahead and give this a try. Am sure you will love this halwa too.

Preparation time ~ 10 minutes
Cooking time ~ 30 minutes
Serves ~ a small bowl of halwa
Author ~ Julie
raw papaya half of one or 3 cups grated
granulated sugar 1 cup
cardamom powder 3/4 tsp 
almonds and cashews chopped 2 tbsp each
whole milk 2 cups
ghee 3 tbsp + 1 tbsp


  • Wash, peel the skin of the raw papaya and scoop out the seeds with the help of a spoon and the white strands like thing which may taste bitter. Then grate the papaya pieces using a grater, keep aside.

  • Heat ghee in a heavy bottomed pan and add the grated papaya. Saute the grated papaya on low flame till it’s half cooked. 

  • Then add boiled milk to this sauteed papaya. Keep cooking, may take 7-8 minutes to reduce completely and the moisture to get absorbed(you may find the milk gets curdled and whey separating but don't worry as this is like making kalakand). Then, add sugar and mix well which will in turn watery. Cook again to reduce and the moisture to get absorbed for 7-8 mins. (If you are using khoya/ mava add at this point crumbled with sugar).

  •  Finally fry the chopped almonds and cashews add to the halwa along with cardamom powder.
* Adding khoya or mava adds to the taste of the halwa, so feel free to add crumbled or grated khoya (1/2 cup) along with sugar. I haven't used khoya in this recipe.

* Raw papaya Paratha

Thursday, January 07, 2021

Pazham Chips | Sweet Banana Chips | Ripe Plantain Chips (Step by Step Pics)

Wishing all a very Happy and Prosperous New Year !!
Hope everyone had a great start this year and hoping the pandemic scare gets over soon with the coming of vaccines. Though majority have only bad to share about 2020 but if you look close there were many good things that happened last year too. Before the lock down, family meals were a rare entity or just for dinner but these days during corona we had most of the meals together. Kids became more tech-savvy and more independent to do online projects and assignments. We have learned to refrain from frequent hospital visits for cold, minor injuries and have started using grandma's tips and tricks. Also, people have started to be more hygiene freak and health conscious. Although there wasn't much outing or sight seeing or shopping but whatever the family time we had been very good. Though I too felt bad about lock down and bored by sitting at home but when thinking of the first line health care workers, many people who had to move out to earn their living then our pain is nothing. Anyways let's hope 2021 is better for all.

Today's post is a simple post that many of us have tasted sometime or the other in Kerala. I tasted these chips the first time after marriage as we didn't have these sweet chips in our part of Kerala. H's place had these in bakeries at Thrissur and I was in love with them because of its sweetness and crunch. I used to buy these chips from H's place and take home. As years passed by, we have started getting these chips all over Kerala. Now its an easy entity in most of Kerala bakeries. My love for these chips made me try these multiple times till I cracked the right selection of these bananas(plantains). There were multiple flaws due to the wrong selection of these bananas(plantains). After the selection, its quite easy to make these chips just like the regular Kerala chips and there you go with your favorite chips fried in no time. Do give this a try with the tips and tricks mentioned below. Enjoy !!

Preparation time ~ 10 minutes
Frying time ~ 20 minutes
Serves ~ one jar of chips
Author ~ Julie
semi ripe plantain 5
salt water 2 tbsp
oil to deep fry(preferably coconut oil)


  • Please select the right bananas to make this chips else the chips gets stickier in oil and remains soft even after frying deep brown. Selecting the right banana is the key to get this chips right. So select the ones (in the pic) just started to be yellow with the stem(thandu) still green. If you select any ripe bananas more than this wouldn't be proper to get the right texture.
  • Cut open the peel of the bananas using a knife(don't wash or drop in water)  and try using a slicer or with the help of a knife cut long slices. That's the usual way we get sweet chips in bakeries else cutting rounds in regular kerala chips can also be done though. I made half as roundels and half as sliced long. The roundels are easy to grate using cutters. The cutting part was taking long unlike for the regular kerala chips where you can directly hold the grater on top of hot oil and grate over it.

  • Heat oil in a wok and when its hot enough(drop a slice and check if it goes down the pan and then floats on top of oil then oil is ready). Drop slices in the oil and fry both sides using a slotted spoon by flipping all sides. Add a tsp of salt water in the oil (there will be splattering and buzzing sounds but don't worry it may take a minute to settle down.These chips turn brown faster so keep flame a bit low and as soon as there is no much bubbling in oil, drain the chips using a slotted spoon. The chips may be soft immediately after draining so leave to cool.
  • Place on paper towels and after 5 mins move to a dry utensil or earthern pot(mann chatti) till it cools down completely before storing. Store in air tight containers.
* Select the right kind of bananas as described above and in pic. Else the chips may not turn correct.
* The addition of salt water is optional but it enhances the sweetness of the bananas.