Naaranga Sulaimaani ~ Lime Black Tea

  A sulaimaani is just that – a dreamy concoction. At any point of time, I prefer my paal chaaya, but at times I do get a bit fed up of it and get myself a small glass of sulaimaani. Normally, I make it this way with a dash of cardamom, but at times when I need a little kick, or when the meal has been too heavy, then a black tea with a nice squeeze of lime does the trick. While doing this post, I remembered this one that Sona (I wish she revives her blog for which I did a guest post sometime back…) had shared on her timeline…     I like this quote, though I have no clue how much I will stick to this. Improving ourselves is an ongoing process but I have never felt like giving it time and concentrating on it. I don’t know if it… 

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Gothambu Kanji ~ Broken Wheat Gruel/ Konji

  Season of flu is here! As much as I love the winters, I dread the illness which comes with it. Alhamdullillah, so far,  I have never had any drastic issues as such at home and I sincerely hope it continues the same way, InShaAllah. “Kanji” or gruel is a dish made very frequently if you have illness loitering in the house. It is calm on the tummy, digests very fast and keeps your system clean.   Mostly we make it with broken rice, and I have already shared this version previously. But at home,umma makes kanji with broken wheat as she is diabetic. The kids are so used to it that they love this version more than the original one. For umma, it’s an easy dinner, when she gets bored of eating chapathis. I was never fond of this earlier, but now I have gone to liking it, thanks to… 

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Kulukki Sarbath ~ Malabar Basil Limeade

  The climate maybe getting better over here, but sometimes it is really hot especially in the afternoons, that you still need something to cool you down instantly. A tall glass of Kulukki Sarbath always comes handy in this case. Kulukki Sarbath is nothing but a basil seed limeade which is so common in Kerala. Literally, it means “shaken drink”. To read a bit of its history, you can hop onto this link. Though it seems to have originated in Calicut, it has gained more popularity in Kochi. You can find these quite a lot on the streets back home but umma would never allow us to have them since you read all sorts of stories about what kind of water is used – better not dwell around it! With this legendary simple drink taking all sorts of variations now, I resort to making the basic simple edition of lime… 

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Sharjah Shake

  The name is intriguing, isn’t it? Yes, even I was intrigued… When we were kids, we used to have long trips with a whole bunch of relatives. Uncle (my aunt’s husband) is a total foodie so we were guaranteed that we would get non-stop eating all the way from start to finish. I still relish those days when we used to stand by sides of the carts – so lovingly called “pettikadas” (literally translates as “box shops”) serving hot dosas or porottas and beef varatti (roast), and hogging on them like crazy! Not to mention of how much the next day, we would be flat on the bed, in and out of the washroom – so typical of “Gulf kuttis”! 😉 But still, that wouldn’t stop us from eating, hehe… All that has come to an end now. D doesn’t like to eat much from such outlets, and HD… 

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Naaranga Soda ~ Lime Soda

  This drink gives me a lot of nostalgia. I remember having said it in one of the posts recently that HD is really fond of naaranga soda. The first time we went home after our marriage, it was peak of summer and since we weren’t used to the climate, we used to get tired immensely in between all the relative visits and walking. Even though I used to crave to have some exotic juices (read avocado or chickoo) or atleast a karimbu juice, he would always settle for this. He would tell me, it is cheap and best. 😀 And yes, it is! In front of your eyes, the “kadakkaaran” (shop keeper) would squeeze lime into the glass, add in sugar or salt as per preference, or both like I have mine, and then pour cold soda over it till the glass brims and sometimes some spill out too…. 

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Bathakka Edichathu ~ Mashed Watermelon

  We are already on day 5 today. As usual, Ramadan seems to be flying in full speed. The summer is at its best – really hot and humid at times making the time spend in the kitchen very uncomfortable. I haven’t been frying anything off late, just the fruits and the dinner, nothing more.  Alhamdulillah, so far it’s been good and hoping that it gets better. The kids and I am really excited that my parents and my sister will be joining us soon by end of this month, InShaAllah… 🙂   This is a hardly a recipe I am posting today. Just another way of having your watermelon! I thought this was the way done in my house, especially with B – he loves to scoop out from a big bowl and have it this way rather than bite into a big slice of watermelon. I seriously don’t… 

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Oats Kanji ~ Oats Milk Drink

  As much as focusing on our inner balance during the coming holy month, it also becomes imperative that we have good nourishing food to keep us going for the whole day. Nowadays, there is so much emphasis on what to eat and what not to eat. This left me intrigued as to how were the fasts during those days of the Prophet – when there was hardly any food to eat. There is emphasis on two foods – dates and water. Dates is a super-food that nourishes the body and brings it back to its normal state after fasting, without causing any disturbance to the balances. Water is also the same. There is no mention of any other kind of food – they used to eat whatever was available. And we plan and plan on what to cook and eat. I guess we need to reflect on the irony…… 

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Idli ~ South Indian Rice Cakes

  If there is a meal that I am assured my kids will wipe clean, then it is idlis with a simple white coconut chutney. Now those who are Indians, will already know what is an idli, and somehow, idli seems to be making its way into the culinary “hall of fame” for its simplicity! 😉 As usual, Wiki has its share of information about idli, so you can go ahead and read it… That is in case you don’t know what is an idli… 🙂   I used to always shy away from making idlis at home. I preferred having them from restaurants, especially our favorite vegetarian eatery called Sangeetha’s in Qusais. The kids would order and eat them as if there is no tomorrow and that is when I thought I must be mastering the art of making this at home. If the soaking, grinding and fermenting times… 

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Semiya Ada Payasam ~ Vermicelli Rice Flakes Kheer

  Another brand new month begins! Isn’t it shocking that 2016 seems to be moving at such a fast pace… we are already entering month 3! Somehow I guess we don’t think about that side much… Sharing with you a slide that I so absolutely loved lately…     As I was digging through my pictures, I noticed I had ignored this post for quite some time. Gosh… During my last vacation, the day I was coming back, as soon as umma was done with the thalacurry, my sister and I got into the kitchen and got to making payasam. We had a small packet of ada, which is dried rice squares which was not enough for making payasam for a huge crowd of 25+. That was when our eyes went on to the small pack of vermicelli that we had got free along with the can of condensed milk…. 

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Muringayila Thengapaal Soup ~ Drumstick Leaves Coconut Milk Soup

  I have already written a long post when I had posted umma’s style of making muringayila, aka drumstick leaves. Once umma went back to stay for good, I never attempted to get any muringayila, or never got the chance to get them as well. They are never sold on supermarket aisles. At the end of last year, we had gone to a cousin’s wife’s house, where there are two big drumstick trees, so I pulled up some so that I could cook it up. The same day Azza went down with vomitting and fever, so we came back home soon and I was feeling totally mood off as she was sleeping and Rasha was spending her time watching her favorite “My Little Pony”. Not being in a mood to cook anything elaborate, I got down to making this soup and I must say that this is the best way… 

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How to make soft Chapathis? ~ Indian Wholewheat Flatbread

  I am surely guilty of something – of not including much of flatbreads or eat-alongs. I have posted quite a variety of rice on the blog, but when it comes to flatbreads, the only ones I seem to have posted is the neypathal, battura and the Sheermal. I don’t know whether I need to bow my head down in shame – but then… Being a working woman, I come home quite tired. After a little rest, I get back to the kitchen with a limited charge which hits the red while the curry is done. So the easiest thing I find doing is do order in for khubboos (Lebanese thin flatbread) or chapathis from HD’s restaurant closeby. It saves a lot of headache for me and also gives me some more breathing time before retiring to bed.   But sometimes, the interest does hit and I make my own… 

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Cherupayar Parippu Pradhaman ~ Kerala Moong Dal Kheer

  Last week, I happened to read this article. As soon as I started reading it, I related it to myself. I always have doubts about how I am doing, what am I doing, and so on and so forth. Each and every word seemed to just point at me and the checklist in that article, SubhaAllah, was a total eye opener. I would suggest my dear readers to go through it too, maybe it will answer a lot of questions for you, just like it did for me, Alhamdulillah… JazakAllah Khair to that sister who did the post… 🙂   It is not that I always crave for cakes and desserts… sometimes I crave for our humble payasam. Somehow, I don’t make the best payasams… I am more confident when it comes to baking or making continental desserts, but if someone asks me to do a payasam, I somehow… 

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Persian Payasam

  Intrigued by the title? Me too! When my hands landed up on the book called ‘Malabar Cuisine‘ that I had ordered through Amazon a couple of months ago, this is the first recipe that caught my attention.You may wonder why do I keep buying books that are related to Malabar cooking, when I am from the Malabar side. It is mainly because there are so many forgotten recipes, that I had eaten during my childhood, but have not had it since then for many many years. Some of these books have really helped me discover some of those forgotten tastes, that I have recorded here and would continue to record. But this payasam was something of the first kind for me….   Just before moving on, the Shhh Cooking Challenge that was started by Priya akka sometime back was on hold for the past few months due to her… 

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Elaneer Pudding ~ Tender Coconut Pudding

Tender coconut, or “elaneer” as we call it in Malayalam, is something that is so readily available back home, whether it is in your own house or with the street vendors. “Kerala” itself means “the land of coconut”, so you can understand it when I say that there is no dearth of coconut trees all across Kerala. Actually, I feel that the abundance of these tall beautiful palm trees is what makes the greenery back home very soothing. Making pudding with elaneer has been on my to-do since quite long. I really do not like having it as it is, somehow its taste doesn’t appeal to me. However, I have had some very good memories of having elaneer puddings at many functions back home and also relish it with a full mind. Once home, noting that time that D gets the “thengukayattakaaran” – the coconut tree climber – my sister… 

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Carrot Payasam/ Kheer

Onam was on while I was back home. The whole area was quite festive during the time. Though a bit hesitant, I went to the local LP (lower primary) school, where my aunt works as assistant headmistress, on the last working day before the 10 day Onam vacation. Since there was no teaching that day, the kids looked so excited. The atmosphere was really electric. Parents were cooperating and cooking up a mini sadya for the kids, who were so eagerly waiting for the sadya. I got some very curious looks as I went around with my I-phone taking some clicks. We had quite a filling sadya which was finished off with some semiya payasam. I really enjoyed the time spent with the kids over there. One of the boys managed to hide under the bench where my banana leaf was laid for food and pulled out the chips and… 

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