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Simple Fresh Lemon Mint Basil Hummus Dip

Simple Fresh Lemon Mint Basil Hummus Dip

Simple Fresh Lemon Mint Basil Hummus Dip, easy to make and with all the flavours of the herbs and garlic. Serve with homemade pita bread

Easy Uppu Seedai From Store Bought Flour

Easy Uppu Seedai From Store Bought Flour

Simple step by step recipe for making easy Uppu Seedai from store bought flour, for a traditional Tamilian savoury made for Gokulashtami naivedyam

Festive Pineapple Rasam -How to make Pineapple Rasam

Festive Pineapple Rasam -How to make Pineapple Rasam

This recipe has appeared first on the blog Tangy Tales when fellow Food Blogger Aparna Parinam asked if I would do a Guest Post on her blog. I had been experimenting with different rasams, all using my homemade rasam powder, and looking at the fresh sliced pineapples on sale at my local grocers, I thought it high time I made the Festive Pineapple Rasam.

The rasam is the South Indian staple and every home has its own favourite recipe. My everyday recipe for Tomato Rasam is with the homemade Rasam Powder from my Mom’s traditional recipe. I sometimes stray from the narrow path and make rasams that are different and equally delicious. Like the Lemon Thyme Rasam (recipe link below). This Festive Pineapple Rasam however is now a special favourite and everyone at home loved it when I made it a couple of weeks ago. My granddaughter Tamma, like most children, is very fond of pineapple and was delighted to find some in the savoury rasam for lunch.

The sweet and tangy tastes of the festive Pineapple Rasam, surprisingly go with each other. I had fresh juicy tomatoes and chunks of pineapple that my daughter had got for me from the store. Pineapples are not easy to peel and slice, and one is never sure if they are ripe and sweet, so its nice to be able to get them already sliced or diced. I prefer them in rings as that makes the slices uniform in thickness and become easier to cook,  however as they were available in chunks, I only had to slice the chunks into even sized pieces.

As I had written in blog post in Tangy Tales, the festive Pineapple Rasam is a great favourite in wedding lunches at Chennai as it brings a touch of the exotic to the regular sambar and rasams that are served in the traditional ‘ellai pottu’ or banana leaf lunch. It is also a popular item on the menu of the restaurants run by Hotel Saravana Bhavan, the large chain of vegetarian restaurants which have several branches in India as well as in many countries in the world.

Festive Pineapple Rasam

The aromatic and flavoursome festive Pineapple Rasam is easy to make though it needs a little more effort when compared to the regular tomato rasam. It can be made without rasam powder, using only ground pepper and cumin, but I like the more robust version below, with homemade traditional rasam powder. If you are buying rasam powder, try to get a South Indian brand as it is likely to be more authentic. And do follow the steps below to get the real taste of the rasam.

The making of the festive Pineapple Rasam is different in some ways from the traditional rasam as we need to prepare the tempering separately and also puree the pineapple as well as the tomato to different consistencies, before they are added to the boiling rasam. There are several steps, however each of them is easy and it is worth the while when your family tastes this unusual rasam.

Festive Pineapple rasam

Some Kitchen Tips for making festive Pineapple Rasam:

  1. Th rasam should be made and served when hot and fresh. Reheating can impact the flavours and its not advisable to keep in the fridge for later use and reheat. If you are not going to serve it as soon as it is made, you could keep the rasam as well as the tempering ready, without adding the pineapple puree. When you need to serve the rasam, add the puree to the rasam, boil it for about 30 seconds, add fresh coriander leaves and then the tempering. last of all. You would then be able to serve it freshly made.
  2. I use home made Rasam powder in this recipe as it gives flavour and authentic ‘rasam taste’. As I said earlier, you could substitute it with fresh ground pepper and cumin seeds (increase the volume of pepper and cumin in the recipe by 1 teaspoon). However in my experience, the festive Pineapple rasam tastes best with rasam powder.
  3. The measurements used in this recipe are based on 1 standard cup = 250 ml

The recipe below is laid out in stages to make it easier to understand and follow. However the tempering could be made while the rasam is boiling, to save time.

Other Rasam recipes on the blog, including Rasam Powder:

Tomato Rasam

Spicy Tomato Rasam
Spicy Tomato Rasam

Home made Rasam Powder

 

Rasam Powder Homemade
Rasam Powder Homemade

Lemon Thyme Rasam

Lemon Thyme Rasam
Lemon Thyme Rasam

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Quick Rotini Pasta in Garlicky Burst Cherry Tomato Sauce

Quick Rotini Pasta in Garlicky Burst Cherry Tomato Sauce

Easy, quick Rotini Pasta in Garlicky Burst Cherry Tomato Sauce made from colourful, juicy cherry tomatoes, garlic, fresh basil and whole wheat spirally pasta

Delicious Summery Fresh Cherry Mint Chutney with Orange Peel

Delicious Summery Fresh Cherry Mint Chutney with Orange Peel

Exotically different from most chutneys, the fresh Cherry Mint Chutney has a refreshingly sweet, slightly tangy taste, subtly flavoured with orange peel

Cherry Compote Yogurt Parfait with Granola

Cherry Compote Yogurt Parfait with Granola

A foodie’s happiest times are when the berries are all around in abundance, gorgeously coloured: sapphire blueberries, startling pink strawberries, ruby red cherries, like jewels waiting to be snatched off the shelves in the grocery store or the farmers market. Deep red cherries are the hero of this so easy to make Cherry Compote Yogurt Parfait with Granola. It won me lots of brownie points at home.

Fresh Red Cherries

 

This recipe uses fresh Cherry compote, and I have given the link for the recipe below. I have included the time for making the Cherry Compote in the estimated time for this recipe, though the parfait itself takes only 5 minutes to put together, while the cherry compote, though easy to make, takes 15 minutes or so for the cherries and the syrup to reach the right consistency for a compote. The time consuming part is for pitting the cherries and I have provided 10 minutes for this as I sliced the cherries into two and dug out the pits. It would take slightly less time and effort with a cherry pitter.

Click here for my Recipe for the Easy Homemade Cherry Compote used in this delicious Cherry Compote Yogurt Parfait with Granola. The Compote may be prepared ahead and frozen in small packs, and the required quantity be taken out for adding to the parfait.

Cherry Compote
Cherry Compote

Quantities in the recipe for the parfait are only indicative, you may change the same according to taste. The cocoa powder is of course the secret ingredient to make the parfait really special. Use a nice sweet honey to the yogurt. I had a bottle of First Agro Farms organic  unprocessed white Kashmir honey that I had brought with me fromIndia and this enhanced the flavours of the parfait.

Some variations to the recipe for Cherry Compote Yogurt Parfait with Granola:

  1. The Parfait may be frozen after preparation, and served just like ice-cream. (It is even more delicious when frozen!)
  2. Add finely chopped nuts instead of granola – chopped green pistachio would go well with the cherry compote.
  3. Make as many layers of fresh cherry and granola as you wish, between layers of yogurt.
  4. Substitute finely minced dark chocolate for the cocoa powder.
  5. Plain yogurt or those with your preferred flavour may be substituted for the banana yogurt in this recipe, though banana would be the best as it lets the flavour of the cherries shine through.

 

Easy Homemade Cherry Compote

Easy Homemade Cherry Compote

Easy Homemade Cherry Compote of fresh dark red cherries flavoured with cinnamon and vanilla. Add some to ice cream and parfaits, drizzle on desserts or pancakes, make a sandwich!

Brown Rice Salad with Roasted Tomatoes and Asparagus

Brown Rice Salad with Roasted Tomatoes and Asparagus

Healthy Brown Rice Salad with Roasted Tomatoes and Asparagus. Delicious, Nutritious and Easy to make. Refreshing and just right for a meal whatever the weather

Roasted Pumpkin Labneh Buckwheat Salad with Pomegranate and Rocket

Roasted Pumpkin Labneh Buckwheat Salad with Pomegranate and Rocket

At first glance, Shaheen Peerbhai’s  (aka the Purple Foodie) Roasted Pumpkin Labneh Buckwheat Salad with Pomegranate and Rocket leaves sounds like a cosy winter salad. It is however a light and refreshing summer type of salad with some unlikely ingredients coming together with a medley of colours and flavours. The roasted pumpkin salad is easy to put together, though it does need some preparation, most of which can be done before hand. The roasted pumpkin drizzled with olive oil and the honeyed buckwheat come together beautifully with the creamy labneh (Arabian strained yogurt or hung curd) and the fresh rocket and pomegranate seeds. A secret ingredient in the salad is the pistou of basil leaves. All together a delicious, nutritious and fun salad for lunch, with a tall glass of iced tea.

Pumpkin Labneh Buckwheat Salad
Pumpkin Labneh Buckwheat Salad

Last month I attended Shaheen’s second set of baking classes at Bangalore ( I had attended some sessions in the first batch in 2016, the first ever, held by this renowned Master Baker, at Bangalore). Though I am a veteran Salad maker (and eater), the name of this item on the Brunch list seemed to me rather unlikely – pumpkin and pomegranates? With hung curd and honey roasted buckwheat? As I watched the process of carefully prepping each ingredient and then finally putting it all together, it was beginning to look more and more interesting. The final taste of the pudding was in the eating – and it was so very melt in the mouth delicious – the roasted pumpkin still warm from the oven, dotted with fresh labneh and lathered with pistou, the sweetness of the pomegranate and the crunch of the honey buckwheat contrasting with the peppery rocket leaves – this Salad was a plateful of Gourmet Heaven.

When you watch Shaheen at one of her classes, this is one of the best take aways – the way you can mix and match ingredients to bring out their colours, textures and flavours, how to be bold and adventurous in shaping a dish to get the best of seasonal produce and the nutrition that comes with it. I would have thought of nuts and cheese in this kind of Salad, but the labneh and the buckwheat were just so perfect instead!

Buckwheat as you may know, is one of the superfoods and an ancient one, at that. Here is a link explaining some of its nutritional and medical properties, on a website that  I came across: Nutrition and you

When I tried to recreate the Roasted Pumpkin Labneh Buckwheat Salad with Pomegranate and Rocket, recently, I made only one change to the Purple Foodie’s recipe – I already had home made Basil Oil readily available so I substituted that for the pistou which the recipe calls for and then added a dash of lemon zest to the salad. Check here for my recipe on this Blog, for the Basil Oil.

Homemade Basil Oil
Homemade Basil Oil

The recipe for the Roasted Pumpkin Labneh Buckwheat Salad with Pomegranate and Rocket, has as you can see from the name, several ingredients, and each of them need to be prepared separately. Each one is easily made though, so don’t let that put you off trying this uber delicious salad. Just keep in mind that the Labneh has to be made ahead of time and needs at least 4 hours for the whey to drain away.
Buckwheat is available in India in most Gourmet stores, some traditional stores, as well as online.
The link below is to a brand of buckwheat that I have used, from a vendor to whom PepperOnPizza.com is affiliated. If you click and purchase through the link, I will earn a small commission. I only promote brands and products that I trust.

Mango Rice – How to make Raw Mango Rice or Mangai Sadam

Mango Rice – How to make Raw Mango Rice or Mangai Sadam

Easy, tangy and tasty seasonal raw mango rice or mangai sadam, Tamil style. Grate the mango with the peel and add peanuts for greater flavour and nutrition.


Festival Kheer

Vanilla Apricot Black Rice Kheer Payasam – a Festive Pudding

Vanilla Apricot Black Rice Kheer Payasam – a Festive Pudding

Make your festival meals exotic as well as healthy, with this Black Rice Kheer Payasam of Forbidden Black Rice flavoured with vanilla and enriched with apricots and pistachio. The result is a delicious festival treat, truly fit for the Gods! As the rice cooks, the aroma wafting through the house has to be experienced to be described! The kheer (pudding) is cooked on low heat for about 40 minutes after the rice is cooked in the pressure cooker. No ghee is used in this recipe. For a vegan version, substitute almond milk for the  dairy milk in the recipe. (more…)


Salad Dressings and Dips

Simple Fresh Lemon Mint Basil Hummus Dip

Simple Fresh Lemon Mint Basil Hummus Dip

Simple Fresh Lemon Mint Basil Hummus Dip, easy to make and with all the flavours of the herbs and garlic. Serve with homemade pita bread

Delicious Summery Fresh Cherry Mint Chutney with Orange Peel

Delicious Summery Fresh Cherry Mint Chutney with Orange Peel

Exotically different from most chutneys, the fresh Cherry Mint Chutney has a refreshingly sweet, slightly tangy taste, subtly flavoured with orange peel

Easy Homemade Cherry Compote

Easy Homemade Cherry Compote

Easy Homemade Cherry Compote of fresh dark red cherries flavoured with cinnamon and vanilla. Add some to ice cream and parfaits, drizzle on desserts or pancakes, make a sandwich!

Strawberry Poppyseed Dressing with Chia Seeds

Strawberry Poppyseed Dressing with Chia Seeds

Quick Easy Strawberry Poppyseed Dressing with Chia Seeds for a delicious and healthy Dip or Salad dressing. A cupful of nutrition in less than 10 minutes!

Black Rice Salad, Cranberry Orange Dressing

Black Rice Salad, Cranberry Orange Dressing

100 Healthy Recipes Challenge: Recipe 1 This Black Rice Salad has to be the most fun salad I’ve made so far. If you’ve been following my blog, you will know that I use several ingredients in each recipe, to bring together a variety of textures, […]