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Friday, October 29, 2021

Mutton Thengapaal Curry | Mutton Curry with Coconut milk (Step by Step Pics)

Did you know the mutton meat that we get in India is not actually 'mutton'? 🧐 
I know most of you know this fact, but I am sharing this for people who had no clues on this aspect. Mutton is the meat of an older sheep, more than two years of age or much older. And the meat we get as mutton in India is the goat's meat. There is also lamb meat available in some places, which is referred to be the meat of a sheep of above one year of age. But as per my knowledge, goat's meat is healthier compared to the actual mutton(sheep's meat). The goat's meat is less on the fat side (leaner and tougher) and contains more protein. Goat meat is low in cholesterol and saturated fats than chicken, too.

Today's post is a simple mutton  curry in a coconut milk based curry. As the name says, it's a nutty sweetly flavoured, thick and delicious curry. Though Mutton Stew is also prepared using thengapaal or coconut milk, but this recipe is different. This curry can be served with steamed rice and even with Indian staples like chapathis/ rotis / appams or even bread. What's your favourite dish with mutton? My family loves biriyani the most and then the curry recipes. I have not yet shared the mutton biriyani recipe, though make it once in a while. I have already posted a roasted coconut mutton gravy (Varutharacha mutton curry), do check that out too if interested, which is the authentic Kerala style mutton gravy. This curry is very simple to prepare and all you need more is half a cup of coconut milk. Do give this curry a try and let me know too 😊

Preparation time ~ 15 minutes
Cooking time ~ 40 minutes
Serves ~ 5-6
Author ~ Julie
mutton 750 g
hot chilly powder 1/2 tsp
pepper powder 1/2 tsp
turmeric powder 1/4 tsp
water 1 cup

for masala
savala / onion 2 medium-size
shallots / kunjulli 1 cup sliced
ginger- garlic paste 2 tbsp
tomato 1 small chopped
coriander leaves 2 tbsp
curry leaves 3 sprigs
kashmiri chilly powder 1.5 tbsp
coriander powder/ malli podi  1.5 tbsp
turmeric powder 1/4 tsp
salt to taste
coconut oil 2tbsp

to temper 
shallots 3 sliced
curry leaves, a sprig
coriander leaves 1 tbsp

  • Wash the mutton pieces under running water 3-4 times, drain water completely and place in a strainer to remove excess water.
  • Heat a cooker and add the mutton pieces, add the turmeric powder, pepper powder, chilly powder and salt. Cook the mutton by mixing all the spices and keep sautéing till the mutton leaves out water. Let the water in the mutton dry up and cook lightly(may take around 7 minutes). Then add a cup of water and cook the mutton on medium flame for 3-4 whistles, wait for the pressure to release(see the pics in the second image 1,2,3,4).

  • In another pan, add oil and add the ginger- garlic paste and sauté until the mix gets lightly crisp and is fried. To this add the sliced shallots and sauté till lightly translucent. Then, add the sliced onions and chopped coriander leaves along with curry leaves. Sauté till lightly browned, add a pinch of salt to speed it up.
  • Then, add the coriander powder on low flame and sauté till the raw smell disappears. Add the remaining spices listed in the masala on low flame and mix well till the raw smell disappears.
  • Slide in the chopped tomato and add 1/4 cup water and switch off flame. 

  • In the meantime, open the cooker after pressure is released and transfer the cooked masala to this. Mix well to combine, add salt as needed. There should be enough stock to cook the masala, if not, add water. Cover the cooker without any whistle on the lid and cook on low medium flame for another 10 minutes till the gravy thickens and masala gets combined well in the mutton. Finally, add half cup coconut milk(thick) on low flame and wait for a few bubbles to appear at the corners of the pan. Switch off flame and leave covered till serving.
  • In another pan, heat oil and add sliced shallots and curry leaves. Sauté till the shallots turn slightly browned and then finally add coriander leaves. Mix well and pour over the curry.
* If your garam masala  have fenugreek powder, omit adding separately. Adds a nice flavour.
* You can add 1/2 tsp of garam masala listed at the end while tempering. In that case add only 1 tsp in the curry and add 1/2 tsp at the end while tempering, adds a nice flavour.
* You can find the coconut milk  recipe here.

Monday, October 25, 2021

Nippattu | Karnataka Style Nippattu(Step by Step Pics)

How are your preparations for Deepawali going on? 
I know all must be busy buying diyas, decorations, lights, dresses and crackers. Sweets are an inevitable part of this festival, and so does the savoury snacks. Nippattu is one of the snacks made in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh made during Sri Krishna Jayanthi (Janmashtami) and in festivals like Deepawali. I have made this as per the Karnataka version. This version has peanuts in  them whereas the Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu version doesn't. We loved the peanut version, as you get to bite a crunch in between. If you are allergic to peanuts, omit the peanuts and try. The rest of the recipe remains the same. 

These rice crackers are made with rice flour, roasted gram a little maida, dessicated coconut and spice powders. These are deep-fried in oil and the shape of a nippattu looks similar to mathri. They are quite addictive. They are flaky, and you can't resist munching these. Likewise, they can be stored in airtight containers for more than ten days. Do give these a try this Diwali and enjoy with your loved ones !!

* If pottukadala is added more than mentioned, nipattu will drink oil.
* If the bubble settles, and you leave in oil, then nipattu drinks oil.
* If dough is loose, then also nipattu absorbs more oil.

Preparation time ~ 15 minutes
Cooking time ~ 20 minutes
Serves ~ 20 nippattu
Author ~ Julie
roasted rice flour / ari podi 1 cup
maida / all-purpose flour 1/4 cup
roasted peanuts /kappalandi  1/4 cup
roasted gram or pottukadala 1/4 cup
dry dessicated coconut  1/4 cup
red dry chilies / vattal mulaku 5
curry leaves / kariveppila  2 sprigs
coriander leaves / malli ela 2 tbsp
sesame seeds / ellu 1 tbsp white
cumin seeds / jeerakam 2 tsp
asafoetida/ hing / kayam podi a good pinch
water 3/4 cup
salt 1 tsp
oil 1.5 tbsp

oil for deep-frying 

  • Dry roast the maida(all purpose flour)in a heavy bottomed pan for about a min. To a bowl add rice flour, maida and salt. Dry roast the red chilies, curry leaves and coarsely powder the mix. Dry roast the peanuts and pulse twice in the blender jar. Dry roast the pottukadala and pulse twice. (Don’t do more than twice as it gets powdered. Small bite here and there adds the crunch).
  • Then add dry grated coconut (if using fresh grated coconut then dry roast the coconut before use, I used grated kopra but I crushed the grated coconut as there were long strands).
  • Then, mix all the crushed items with hing. Heat oil (1.5 tbsp) and pour over the mix. With hands rub the hot oil in the flour mix to combine well.

  • Then, add water little by little to knead a smooth dough(I used 3/4 cup water). The dough shouldn’t be very tight or loose, the chapathi dough consistency is good if it’s loose else will drink oil.
  • Scoop out small portions of dough (about gooseberry size) and flatten to the disc shape. Apply oil on a polythene cover and place one ball on it, flatten or use banana leaves. Then transfer the prepared disc to prepared oil. Wait till each one pops up and floats to the surface to add the next disc in oil(don't overcrowd the wok).
  • Then wait till bubbles settle down to flip (about 2-3 minutes) on medium flame. Flip and cook the other side till bubbles settle. Finally remove immediately after the bubbles disappear(else will drink oil). Repeat the same step till you finish frying all nipattu. Drain on layers of paper towel. Cool completely and store in air tight containers.

* You can use chilli powder instead of red dry chillies, but the crushed chillies add speckles to the nippattu.
* Add mint(pudina) or moringa(drumstick leaves) for a different variation to this nipattu.
* Karnataka uses peanut, whereas Andhra version and Tamil Nadu ones have no peanut in them. So if you wish to try or if you are allergic to peanuts, then try making without peanuts.
* You can add ghee instead of hot oil too, makes more soft and flaky. Ghee should also be added hot. Hot oil/ ghee adds that extra crunch and flakiness.
* Don't flip the nippattu immediately as soon as it starts floating. Wait till the bubbles settle to flip (may take 2-3 mins) or else it breaks. 
* Usually maida is used to make as a binder or chirotti rava is used. You can use 1/4 cup chirotti rava too instead of maida.

Friday, October 22, 2021

Chocolate Banana Pancakes (Eggless)

What's the favourite breakfast item with your kids at home?  If you ask my kids, the reply would be none other than pancakes. They would be more than happy to devour pancakes for breakfast every day. And so, I have tried only wheat flour pancakes, I generally make them with the atta (wheat flour) that we make chapathis. But I don't like serving pancakes once in two weeks or in about ten days only. The leavening agents baking soda or baking powder may not be a healthy choice for an everyday affair. What do you say? 

Today's post is yet another eggless recipe that I tried with wheat flour and cocoa powder. The star ingredient of this recipe is overripe bananas I generally use up these bananas in baking and there are many recipes that I tried with overripe bananas which you can check in my page. The best part of trying out recipes with bananas is that the resultant product whether baked or cooked is very soft. My elder son doesn't like using bananas in baking, and so I served these pancakes to him. He is the first one to identify the bananas used in cooking but to my surprise, he ate heartily, and after he finished I told him the main ingredient in this pancake. He was like -what?? So, let me happily tell you that you can easily sneak in your over ripe bananas in this pancake. The only reason he couldn't identify is that it had cocoa powder and chocolate chips. These are very soft and are delicious to be served with maple syrup or honey. Do give these a try and enjoy for breakfast.

Preparation time ~ 10 minutes
Cooking time ~ 20 minutes
Author ~ Julie
Serves ~ 10 pancakes
wheat flour 1 cup
baking powder 1.5 tsp
salt a pinch
cocoa powder 2.5 tbsp
powdered sugar 1 tbsp
any neutral oil 2 tsp 
milk 1 cup
vanilla extract 3/4 tsp
banana 1/2 cup mashed / 4 small bananas / 1 robusta 
white chocolate chips 2 tbsp
butter 2tbsp (optional)

  • Sift the flour, powdered sugar with baking powder, cocoa powder and salt twice. Keep aside.
  • Mash the banana with a fork or add to a blender jar. (My kids don’t like chunks of bananas in between, and so I just blend to smooth).

  • Add the mashed bananas and milk to dry ingredients. Then add oil and vanilla extract. Combine everything well to a smooth batter.
  • Heat a non-stick pan, preferably, and add a ladle of batter. Wait for the bubbles to appear on the surface of the pancake. To this add a few white chocolate chips and 1/4 tsp butter(optional). Flip the other side and cook for half a minute and remove from pan (Each time, clean the pan and sprinkle some water to reduce heat so that the pancakes get a smooth surface just like store brought pancakes). 
  • Finish making all pancake with the batter and enjoy with maple syrup or a dollop of vanillla ice cream or just honey.

* You can use regular granulated sugar too, in that case just add to the bananas when blending.
* Omit if you don't like very sweet, as bananas impart a mild sweetness to the pancakes.


Indianised version of pancakes -

Monday, October 18, 2021

Petti Pathiri(Petti Pathil) | Chicken Box Patties (Step by Step Pics)

Petti Pathiri(petti pathil / pettiyappam) is a Malabar style iftar dish that gets its name by the shape of the pathiri. 'Petti' means 'box' in Malayalam, is an interesting pathiri shaped like a box or petti with a creamy white sauce chicken-veg filling. There are a number of pathiri recipes from Malabar that are prepared for Iftar and other festive occasions. The filling is placed on prepared pancakes (steps listed below) and then it is folded in a box shape, dipped in egg mixture, coated with bread crumbs and fried. The dough can also be prepared just like chapathis or pooris, roll out as pooris and the filling is kept on one poori and covered with another poori. The sides are cut in square shape and sealed by pressing with a fork and the remaining steps remain the same. 

I have made this filling using chicken, but you can prepare with beef too. I saw this recipe in a cookery channel and the best part that I liked about this recipe is that the filling is not the traditional type and this is more of a chicken pot pie like filling. When I say chicken pot pie filling, its white creamy sauce filling with chicken and veggies whereas the traditional pathiri filling is just like we make Irachi Pathiri. But this filling tastes totaly different in a Kerala style recipe, but we definitely liked it. You can even add grated cheese to this filling to make it richer. Do give this a try if you liked it and enjoy with your loved ones !!

Preparation time ~ 20 minutes
Cooking time ~ 20 minutes
Serves ~ 8
Author ~ Julie
for filling
cabbage chopped 1/2 cup
beans chopped 1/2 cup
carrot grated 1/2 cup
pepper powder 1/4 tsp
oil 2tbsp

to cook chicken
chicken boneless 250 gms
pepper powder 1/4 tsp

for white sauce
butter 1tbsp
maida(all purpose flour) 1tbsp
pepper powder 1/2 tsp
whole milk 1 cup

for pancakes or pathiri
maida (all-purpose flour)1 cup
egg 1
pepper powder 1/4 tsp

for cover
egg 1
bread crumbs


  • Wash and clean the chicken pieces. Add the chicken pieces, add pepper powder 1/2 tsp and salt. Add enough water to cook the chicken and cook till done. 
  • Add the chicken pieces to a blender jar once cooled and pulse once or twice to get shredded chicken (reserve the chicken stock if any, can use this when making white sauce).
  • To make filling- Heat oil in a pan and add all the veggies, sauté till the raw smell disappears(a slight crunch is good in the filling). 
  • Add salt, pepper powder and add the shredded chicken. Mix well and remove from this from pan. To the same pan, add butter then and add all-purpose flour(maida) and sauté till its roasted nice To this, add milk gradually to make a lump free paste. When the sauce thickens(add any reserved chicken stock at this point), add the sautéed veggies and chicken mix. Give a quick mix, stir and switch off flame. Filling is ready.
  • Now, prepare a batter using the ingredients listed under pancake/ pathiri. Make a dosa like batter for making pancakes/ pathiri. Heat a pan and make thin dosas/ pancakes. Cover and cook for a minute (you don't have to wait for dosas/ pancakes to brown or get crisp, try making this on a non-stick pan). Remove each dosa on a plate and place 1.5 tbsp of filling in the center of the pancake and fold like a box/ pockets type(see pic). Repeat making all the pancakes till you finish with the filling (Don't try to make all pathiris and fill the filling because these pathiris may stick to each other. If you plan to make all pathiris and then do the filling, then place each pathiri separately rathe than stacking one upon another).
  • Dip the boxes or pockets in beaten egg and roll in bread crumbs. Repeat this step for all pockets.
  • Heat oil in a pan and shallow fry the pockets/ appams by flipping all the sides. Drain and remove on a paper towel. Enjoy warm with ketchup.

* You can use beef or use any meat but should be boneless instead of chicken. 
* Alter the veggies too as per preference or availability.
* You can even try the traditional style filling for this recipe like I made the Irachi Pathiri if you like that way instead of the white sauce type filling. And you can omit the veggies in the traditional filling.
* You can even add grated cheese to this white sauce filling for a richer variation.
* The dough can also be prepared just like chapathis or pooris, in that caseyou can omit the egg in the pancake batter and prepare the dough. Pinch out the dough, roll out as pooris and the filling is kept on one poori and covered with another poori. The sides are cut in square shape and sealed by pressing with a fork and the remaining steps remain the same. 


Friday, October 15, 2021

Pineapple Halwa (Step by Step Pics)

Wishing all a Very Happy Dusshera !!
Last year most of us were confined at home, no getto or family visits during all festival times due to Covid-19. This year, the situation has improved in the majority of the states. Hopefully we can enjoy most of the upcoming festivities with the same zeal and enthusiasm. Schools are also re-opening by 1st November and everything is slowly moving back to track. Schools were closed for almost 1.5 years now and kids are also eagerly waiting to meet their friends.

Sweets are always a big 'yes' to my kids, and so do the halwa recipes. This is a simple halwa recipe that you can prepare in a jiffy and enjoy. This halwa has a tangy feel, and so people who don't like the tanginess may add more sugar to hide the tangy feel. Fresh pineapple recipes are listed at the end of this page if you would like to try out something new. The halwa is smooth and silky. I haven’t added any colour to this halwa and all that you see in pics is the real colour of fresh pineapple. You may add a bit of yellow colour if you like a vibrant colour to the halwa. Do give this a try this festive season and enjoy with your dear ones.

Please check out more halwa recipes listed in my space-

Preparation time ~ 15 minutes
Cooking time ~ 15 minutes
Author ~ Julie 
Serves ~ 6-8 pieces
pineapple medium size,1 or cubed 2 cups or 2 cups juice
sugar 3/4 cup -1 cup
corn flour 1/4 cup
water 1/4 cup
cardamom powder 3/4 tsp
almonds or cashews 1 tbsp
ghee 1.5 tbsp

  • Keep ready the corn flour mixed with water. Chop the almonds and keep ready. Powder the cardamom and keep aside.

  • Peel and clean the pineapple and chop small. Add to a blender jar and make a smooth paste. Add sugar and blend again till the sugar is completely dissolved. Strain the juice in a strainer so that we can get rid of the fibres.
  • Prepare a bread pan lined with parchment paper. Add chopped nuts(very few) at the bottom.

  • Add ghee and pineapple juice to a heavy bottomed pan. Cook the juice mixture till it's reduced slightly and thickened. At this point, add the corn flour mixed with water. Keep stirring till there are no large lumps and the mixture thickens.  
  • Add the cardamom powder and chopped nuts (1/2 tbsp).

  • Cook till the mixture starts to leave the pan(about 5 minutes). Switch off flame and transfer to the prepared pan. Smooth the top surface and garnish again with few more chopped nuts.
  • Leave to cool completely before you cut in squares. Enjoy.

* As pineapple is a tangy fruit, alter the amount of sugar as per the sweetness of this fruit. 
* You can even add a pinch of yellow colour for the vibrant look, but I haven't added any colour, it's the natural pineapple colour that you see.


Monday, October 11, 2021

Mixed Veg Dal Khichadi (Step by Step Pics)

When all are free sitting idle at home, especially weekends, I try making something simple yet nutritious for the family and so end up making a one pot meal. Mixed veg khichadi is one such type of comfort meal that you can prepare with any type of veggies and dal. There are multiple variations that you can try out for this recipe, and I too keep experimenting a lot of them. Mixed veg khichadi when served with a dollop of butter and hot rasam poured over it -awww !! Tastes heavenly. I love that combo so much, and all you need is a pappad(pappadam) by the side at the most. Do give this healthy one pot meal and try serving it hot for best tastes.

Preparation time ~ 20 minutes
Cooking time ~ 30 minutes
Serves ~ 6
Author ~ Julie
sona masoori 2 cups
tuvar dal or toor dal or sambar parippu 3/4 cup
water 5 1/2 cups
green peas 1/4cup
capsicum 1 small or 1/4 cup diced 
carrots 2 or 1/4 cup cubed
beans 1/4 cup
onion 1 medium-sized
ginger-garlic paste 1 tbsp
tomato 1chopped
coriander leaves 2 tbsp
curry leaves a sprig
chilly powder 1 tsp
kayam or asafoetida or hing 1/2 tsp
turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
whole spices (cumin seeds 1 tsp, cinnamon 2 pieces, cloves 3-4, peppercorns 4, cardamom 3)
salt to taste 
ghee or butter 1 tbsp 
oil 2 tbsp

  • Wash and cut all veggies, keep aside. Wash the rice and dal separately, keep soaked till use.


  • Heat oil and ghee/ butter in a pan, add the whole spices, hing and sauté. To this add onion, sauté till translucent and then add ginger-garlic paste, sauté till raw smell disappears. Add the spice powders on low flame and then add chopped tomato. Cook till mashed.

  • Then add cut veggies and washed dal along with rice. Add salt and mix well. 
  • Finally, add the coriander leaves and water(5 1/2 cups). Cook for 3-4 whistles. Wait till pressure is released and then fluff with a fork to check if done. Serve on a plate with pappad and raitha as side.
* If you want the khichadi watery, then add a cup more of water when cooking.
* You can use tuvar dal too instead of moong dal.
* Add whichever vegetables are available in your kitchen.



Thursday, October 07, 2021

Shankarpali | Shakkar Para (Step by Step Pics)

Shankarpali or shakkar pare is a traditional Indian sweet prepared during Diwali and Holi. This is a famous snack of Maharashtra and in many other states like Karnataka and southern states. In Kerala, we prepare  Diamond Cuts. I have devoured a lot of shankarpali and Namak pare from Pune bakeries during college/ hostel days and loved these tiny squares a lot. These are typically square shaped biscuit and also called sweet tukdi' in  some places. The process of making this snack is quite simple and just needs the basic ingredients like maida, sugar, ghee and oil. In Rajasthan, people make this snack without adding sugar and coat with sugar syrup finally at the end just like Diamond Cuts.  Namak pare 
and Diamond Cuts  both have that flaky texture and is really addictive.

As we are getting close to Dusshera and Diwali, I thought to post this recipe here. I have been making both sweet and salty versions many a time and both are foolproof recipe that you can try out without much fuss. The only issue with this snack is that the plate gets empty before I even finish frying all batches. This snack is that addictive and loved by my family. This makes a small batch and if you plan to make larger batches, just double up the ingredients and prepare. The square pieces when added to oil should be dropped in hot oil, but then the heat should be lowered to finish the cooking process otherwise the outside may get browned faster (as the dough has sugar) and the inside may remain uncooked. Enjoy making this for Diwali and enjoy with family.

Preparation time ~ 15 minutes
Cooking time ~ 15 minutes
Author ~ Julie
Serves ~ a small quarter plate
maida 1.5 cups
milk 1/3 cup
granulated sugar 1/3 cup
melted ghee 3 tbsp 
cardamom powder 1/2 tsp
salt a pinch


  • In a sauce pan, add milk and warm it up, add the sugar and wait till sugar is completely dissolved. Then add melted ghee. Now, add this mixture to the dry flour mix and knead to a dough. 
  • Combine the dry ingredients; maida, salt and cardamom powder. Keep aside. You can start making from 15 minutes of resting, but I feel resting for an hour gives the dough more pliability. 
  • Divide the dough in equal parts and then roll this dough as a paratha, the thickness as of aloo paratha. Then, using a pizza cutter, cut out squares.

  • Heat oil in a wok and check if the oil is hot by dropping a small piece, if the dough goes down and then floats up. Then the oil is ready to fry.
  • Add the square pieces, don't overcrowd. Wait for the pieces to get lightly browned and then start flipping all sides, reduce the heat slightly so that the pieces get coked from inside else the outside gets browner faster and the inside may remain uncooked.

  • Once deep brown, drain using a slotted spoon on a paper towel. Repeat the same step of making till you finish the dough. Finally, cool the shankarpali completely and store in airtight containers.

* I used only 1/4 cup granulated sugar, but you can use upto 1/3 sugar. We like it mildly sweet. More the sugar, the pieces tend to become browner faster.
* Double the ingredients and make larger batches.

For more Diwali recipes, click here.