July 2014
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Adiperukku is a unique South Indian and specially a Tamil state festival celebrated on the 18th day of the Tamil month of Aadi.. To show our gratitude to the nature and to Thank Mother Cauvery river, we celebrate Aadiperukku. People celebrate this auspicious day by making many different variety rices along with a sweet and vadai and offer all of them to Goddess nature and then enjoy with their family. Aadi Perukku Lunch menu is very special and yummy. We can make sarkarai pongal (Sweet pongal) or payasam along with medhuvadai , coconut rice, puliyodarai, lemon rice and curd rice. We can have aviyal and papad as accompaniment for this wonderful lunch menu. People who live in villages, would make this variety rices and take it near the banks of the river and would enjoy sitting in the banks and have the food. 

Aadi Perukku Lunch Menu
Aadi Perukku Lunch Menu

Very simple lunch menu. We just need seasoning for coconut and lemon rice. A very simple effort needed for puliyodarai. We need considerable effort for vadai as it requires frying in oil and also with respect to aviyal, cutting vegetables take more effort than cooking. We can finish off this menu within 90 minutes.

Aadi Perukku Lunch Menu
Aadi Perukku Lunch Menu

We can also make this menu occasionally in normal days too. I always love variety rices and some of my close friends actually request me to prepare this menu when they plan to visit me. I have given below all the individual recipes which would be helpful for you to prepare great menu for Aadi Perukku.

Gobi Paratha, Cauliflower stuffed Indian Bread is a famous paratha variety. Grated cauliflower with coriander and ajwain seeds along with handful of chopped coriander leaves, gives a wonderful flavour to the filling. Stuff the yummy gobi filling inside roti and make wonderful paratha. Serve the yummy Gobi Paratha with plain curd or Paratha Chutney

This is again a combination of onion and tomato, but there is a slight variation. In this, we are going to use all the ingredients as raw and not going to saute them. This spice-sour raw chutney is a wonderful combination for parathas. We generally serve parathas with plain curd or raitha. But this Paratha Chutney is a perfect accompaniment for all types of parathas. Try this chutney and serve with paratha and enjoy the taste!

Sweet Aval or Aval jaggery or Sweet Poha is one of the simplest sweet dish and it is very instant too. Aval Jaggery is one of the most important neivedhyam dish for Krishna Jeyanthi / Gokulashtami. As per our tradition, Little Krishna always love to have this yummy dish and hence we offer this for Lord Krishna on this birthday. This dish is also healthy as aval and also jaggery is good for health.In my childhood, my mom used to make this as an evening snack when we return back from school. Lets see the simple steps to make this tasty dish! 

Carrot Beetroot poriyal is one of the healthiest and yummy side dish for any rice dishes. I have seen may kids hate beetroot because of its color, but my daughter simply love beetroot than any other veggie. So I often do beetroot poriyal. She loves to mix the poriyal with the rice and ghee. I often combine carrot and beetroot to make the poriyal more healthier.

I prefer to add a teaspoon of grated coconut which enhances the flavor and taste of the poriyal. But you can very much skip the addition of the coconut if you prefer to have more 'health friendly' recipe. 

This week, I have given here one of the rich NorthIndian Lunch Menu. Chapati with Dal Makhani, Paneer Butter Masala, cluster beans curry and vegetable pulao. I like this wonderful dishes. This is one of the richest lunch menu and I always love to prepare this yummy dish when there are guests in my home. 

North Indian Lunch Menu 2 - Chapati, Dal Makhani, Paneer Butter Masala, Cluster Beans Curry, Vegetable Pulao, Curd and Salad
North Indian Lunch Menu 2 - Chapati, Dal Makhani, Paneer Butter Masala, Cluster Beans Curry, Vegetable Pulao, Curd and Salad 

We all know Dal Makhani is one of the richest dal variety usually called as "Maa ki dal". The richness of butter cooked together with lentils gives a wonderful flavour. This flavour and texture rich dal goes well with vegetable pulao and chapati. This is a very special Punjabi dish.

Next, Paneer Butter Masala, we all love paneer and again richness of butter with paneer and gravy makes it so delicious. This is again another famous punjabi dish. Paneer Butter Masala is a wonderful accompaniment for chapati. As the the dal and paneer gravy are rich with butter, I thought of making a simple vegetable curry as a dry accompaniment for the roti.  

Next, we need a rice to go with this menu. I want the rice to be richer with vegetables so I have opted for vegetable Pulao. Dal Makhani goes well with the vegetable pulao. Finally make some chapatis to enjoy the delicious dal, paneer butter masala and clusterbeans curry. We can plan to have tomato puree that makes our work easier and also we would get richer texture. Also don't forgot to soak the dals overnight. Clusterbeans takes only less time and also the vegetable pulao also would take only half an hour. So we could finish off this yummy menu with simple planning in 1.5 hours. Please refer to the individual recipes given below.

North Indian Lunch Menu 2 - Chapati, Dal Makhani, Paneer Butter Masala, Cluster Beans Curry, Vegetable Pulao, Curd and Salad
North Indian Lunch Menu 2 - Chapati, Dal Makhani, Paneer Butter Masala, Cluster Beans Curry, Vegetable Pulao, Curd and Salad 


Recipes :
Dal MakhaniPaneer Butter Masala

Cluster Beans SubjiVegetable Pulao

North Indian Lunch Menu 2 - Chapati, Dal Makhani, Paneer Butter Masala, Cluster Beans Curry, Vegetable Pulao, Curd and Salad
North Indian Lunch Menu 2 - Chapati, Dal Makhani, Paneer Butter Masala, Cluster Beans Curry, Vegetable Pulao, Curd and Salad 

Dal Makhani, often referred to "Maa Ki Dal" (Mother of all Dal varieties). Yes, the statement is absolutely true. The texture, flavour, taste is irresistible. It is one of the most popular Punjabi dish. No doubt, Dal Makhani is calorie rich dish. But a proper schedule of exercise should be healthy to burn the calories rather than taking low calorie food. So enjoy the calorie rich food making sure you are working out to burn the extra calories. The primary ingredients of Dal Makhani is Whole Black Urid Dal and Red kidney beans. We can also substitute the kidney beans with channa dal also.

Conventional way of cooking this yummy dish is a time consuming process which requires slow cooking of the dal and the gravy for atleast 6-8 hours. The texture and the flavour will be perfect if we cook in low flame for atleast 2-3 hours. But nowadays we should be cautious of the fuel and time and hence we can prepare it quickly doing some little tricks. I have shared below some of the tricks to get this dish in actual texture and taste within an hour itself. Lets see the recipe now...

I have often seen many kids tactically avoiding greens especially mint, coriander leaves and curry leaves. My elder daughter she spends more time to pick the coriander leaves and curry leaves from the dishes. These 3 leaves, mint, coriander and curry leaves are also part of spinach varieties which are very healthy and we usually include them on day to day cooking. So make her eat the greens, I usually grind all the leaves where ever possible. This is one such dish. I usually add the greens to the dosa batter so that my kid all the nutrients. My daughter call this as Green Dosa. This dosa batter doesn't need any fermentation and hence we can soak the rice and urid dal in the morning and plan this yummy dosa for dinner. Try this simple and healthy Mint, Coriander and Curry Leaves Dosa(Green Dosa). Serve this with either Kara Chutney or Poondu Kuzhambu and enjoy the taste!

Paneer Paratha, a very scrumptious Indian bread variety. Most of us are Paneer lovers. We can make many varieties of dishes with paneer. Paneer Paratha is another variety of Paratha where the Indian Bread are stuffed with crumbled paneer (Cottage cheese). Punjabi's make homemade paneer with which they do parathas. My daughter loves Paneer Paratha than any other Parathas. Paneer Paratha is a tummy filling dish and usually served with Plain Curd or Raitha or Chutney. 

Aadi month is full of many festivals and auspicious days. One such day is Aadi Krithigai which is dedicated to Lord Muruga. All tamil caldender month has krithigai nakshatra and special puja will be help in all temples. Aadi month marks the beginning of the southward (Dakshianayana) journey of the sun. Hence Aadi krithigai gets a special importance. Special abishegam , Pooja will be performed on the arupadai veedu and also in other Murugar temples. This year Aadi Krithigai falls on 28st of July 2016.
Image Courtesy - Google

We all know Lord Muruga is also known as Lord Kartikeya as he was raised by 6 kritika stars. Lord Muruga is the Devasenapathi (God of war) and was born to destroy the demons. It is very good to chant "Skanda Shasti Kavacham" and "Skanda Guru Kavacham" and Subramaniya Bujangam on this auspicious day. 

Special dishes such as Sweet pongal, payasam, vadai are prepared as neivedhyam dishes.

Recipes:
Paruppu VadaiSweet Pongal


This week, its a simple menu. Sometimes we feel like eating a simple menu which is more yummy than even festival menu. One such menu is Milagu Kuzhambu with Paruppu Thugayal and Jeera Rasam. Paruppu Thugayal is a wonderful accompaniment for both Milagu Kuzhambu and Jeera Rasam. This simple and tasty menu is very scrumptious and I love to do this menu atleast once a fortnight. Milagu kuzhambu is a healthy dish which often heals our stomach upsets. Jeera rasam is also a healthy dish. These two healthy dishes together served with paruppu thugayal and sutta appalam makes the meal rich and healthy.

This menu, though simple, it requires grinding for all the 3 dishes. So proper planning of frying the grinding ingredients makes our job easy. After grinding all the ingredients for each dish separately, its hardly matter of minutes to finish off the full menu. Serve this simple and yummy menu with sutta appalam and enjoy your meal. 

Double Decker Vegetable Dosa , a very yummy dosa variety especially for kids to make them eat healthy vegetables. Double decker, as the name implies there are two dosa one on top of other and in the middle it is filled within delicious vegetable filling.  Our kids always have very some reasons to skip healthy vegetables. My daughter, especially hastes milk and not taking enough dairy. She is not a great fan of cheese too. So I thought of making a filling with lot of different vegetables and finally add some cheese and make a filling in-between 2 dosas and she really love the taste and the presentation. Try this yummy Double Decker Dosa and share your suggestions and comments!

Thepla, a famous Gujarati Cuisine Indian Flat Bread, wherein chopped greens or grated vegetables are mixed with whole wheat flour along with yogurt and spices. Thepla are thinner than Paratha and in Paratha we stuff the filling but in thepla, we mix the filling with the flour itself. We can make wide variety of thepla using different vegetables / greens. We can make methi thepla, carrot, beetroot, cabbage, mint, coriander leaves, radish etc. Bottle Gourd Thepla is another variety where we add grated bottle gourd and spices to the whole wheat flour and knead it to a dough and make flat breads out of it. This is often referred to as "Lauki Thepla / Doodhi Thepla". We can make this for breakfast / brunch or for dinner. We have to serve this yummy and healthy lauki thepla with plain curd or any raitha and enjoy its dainty taste!

This is one of my favourite soup. ChickPeas with Coriander leaves gives a nice flavour to the soup. Though this soup has Mexican flavour, it is not too hot and spicy but the presence of the chilli does give it a nice taste, and the flavour and texture of chickpeas is perfect for soup. Serve this yummy Chick Peas and Coriander soup with Bread croutons and enjoy!

Pizza is one of the favourite dish for all kids especially because of the cheese. How about Pizza Dosa? Sounds interesting! Most of the kids hate eating healthy vegetables and it is always a big work for the mom's to make them eat the vegetables. Making Pizza in home is doable and needs an oven to bake. But we can make this yummy Pizza Dosa with our conventional dosa batter in no time and we can make our children eat healthy vegetables and cheese. We just need to make thick dosa base and then top it with vegetables followed by sauces and cheese, cover it up so that the vegetables get cooked with dosa and the base of the dosa is nicely crisp. Pizza Dosa is more pleasing and appetizing and would attract all of us. 

This week in Lunch Menu Ideas, for a change, I thought of presenting NorthIndian Lunch Menu. This simple lunch menu is always a huge hit in my home. So I thought of sharing this delicious and easy menu. All North Indian lunch menu would have always have an Indian Bread like roti / Naan / Chapati and as an accompaniment with the Indian Bread we would have a gravy and a curry. Also we would have a dal to mix with plain rice or some kind of pulao / fried rice. 

I have presented here a menu with Chapati as Indian Bread, Mutter Paneer as gravy, AlooPattaGobhi as dry curry and simple Dal Tadka along with jeera rice. Curd, Pickle and salad are other accompaniments for this yummy menu. Most of us love Paneer especially kids and Paneer gravy would be a must in most of the NorthIndian homes. I love aloo with cabbage dry curry which is always a best dry curry with chapati. Dal tadka is one of the basic and simple dal which goes well with plain rice, Jeera rice or other Pulao.

Tadka Dal is one of the simplest dal variety and it is one of the usual dal dish in most of Punjabi homes. Tadka means "tempering" and in Dal Tadka (Tadka Dal) is a very simple and easy dish where we are going to cook everything with dal and finally add the tempering just before serving.  We can serve this delicious Dal Tadka with roti / chapati or any Indian Bread and also just with plain steaming rice. 

I happen to see this recipe in one of the television shows and thought to share this with you all. Kachori is a very popular snack in Northern India. This is one of the yummy chaat variety in many of the chaat shops. There are variety of kachori we can make and I have already shared the recipe for Aloo Kachori and Sweet Bread Kachori. Poha Kachori is another delicious variety of kachori. Its very simple to make and tastes so good. Outer cover we are going to make with bread and potato and we are going to stuff this with poha / puffed rice and deep fry them. A perfect evening snack with hot cofee / tea!

Paratha's are always in a healthier side keeping in mind we use less butter or oil. We can make many different types of healthier parathas. In previous week, I have shared with you how to make healthy Soya Mince Paratha. This week, its mixed vegetable paratha. Kids always have some reasons to avoid some vegetables which are healthier. My daughter always come up with reason to avoid capsicum and cabbage. She loves to have aloo paratha. To make her eat all the vegetables, I usually make mixed vegetables paratha so that she cannot neglect any vegetables. 
Mixed vegetable paratha is a very healthy Indian Bread variety as we are including all healthy vegetables. Serve this yummy paratha with Plain curd or any raitha and enjoy the dish!

Paneer is favorite for most of us especially kids. My daughter just love to devour Paneer in whatever dish it is added. So I always have some paneer in my fridge. We can make variety of dishes with paneer. Paneer Pakoda, a very crispy and crunchy snack for a wonderful evening. This yummy snack is very simple and easy to make.  Serve this crispy Paneer Pakoda with hot coffee / tea and enjoy the evening. 

Gobi Manchurian is a famous appetizer and also a famous gravy. Instead of using only Gobi, we can add many vegetables and make it much more richer. This vegetable Manchurian is a real treat to us. It is so yummy and tasty and goes well with Fried rice / Pulao especially Chinese Vegetable Fried Rice. This dish requires more effort but it tastes dainty. A perfect dish for a party to treat our family and friends. Vegetable Manchurian can be done either dry or gravy. Dry Vegetable Manchurian is a perfect appetizer. Half of the method remains same for both the types of dishes. Final step varies as gravy needs thin and running consistency so we do a slight modification to the dry recipe to make it a gravy. Lets see the method now...

This week in lunch menu ideas corner, I have come up with simple and yummy lunch menu. Bittergourd pitali with Broadbeans curry, cucumber kootu, tomato rasam and rice. Bittergourd Pitali is one of the traditional kuzhambu variety and a common dish in my home. Avarakkai (Broad Beans) poriyal goes fantastic with this yummy kuzhambu. Cucumber is another vegetable which I often use in my kitchen. Cucumber kootu is a wonderful stew which goes well with most of the kuzhambu variety. It is so yummy and refreshing dish especially in summer. Finally tomato rasam, the conventional rasam helps us to digest our whole menu. Serve this yummy menu with hot steaming rice and some papad and enjoy your meal.

We all love Ghee Roast Dosa especially kids. In restaurants, we have seen ghee roast served like a cone. Especially kids dosa is served with a small umbrella just to attract the kids. All kids love to have this yummy and crispy cone dosa. My daughter always call this as Cone Dosa and by default her first choice in any restaurant is Ghee Roast / Kids Dosa. Preparing Ghee Roast in home is very simple and we can also fold the dosa like a cone and treat our kids with homemade kids dosa! Actually home made ghee roast is a quick breakfast dish. 

Maida dosa is one of the variety of dosa which is very instant and doesn't need soaking of any dals or rice. We all have maida in our home readily and this is one of the simplest and instant dosa recipe, if we don't have our conventional batter readily available. Maida is not an healthy ingredient but having maida dosa once a while doesn't harm us. So try this instant dosa and share your comments!

Methi Paratha, a healthy and yummy Indian Bread variety and a traditional North Indian breakfast dish. A healthy paratha with more flavors and nutrition.We can stuff the methi or we can just mix them with wheat flour and knead it. Either way is taste and yummy, I prefer mixing the methi leaves with the flour itself, that way it is so simple and quick. Serve this yummy Methi paratha with chillied curd or any raitha or Paratha Chutney and enjoy the healthy paratha!

I came across this wonderful recipe recently in one of the leading departmental store website. We all love the classic tomato soup. This tomato soup recipe has a slight variation from classic tomato soup as we are going to use red kidney beans and red capsicum (red bell pepper) but the soup tastes dainty.The red kidney beans and red bell pepper adds a nice flavour to the tomato soup. Try this yummy Tomato, red kidney beans soup and share your experience.

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