Share Buttons

Showing posts with label RAITA / PACHADI. Show all posts
Showing posts with label RAITA / PACHADI. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


I am not a raita fan but Yo (my husband) likes raita. One such day when I was cooking up a storm for him, I decided to make a special raita for him. Everybody makes a cucumber raita or a pineapple raita. I thought why not combine the two. And lo and behold we had such a refreshing new dish to savor.
Cucumber is very cooling for the system and is good for our skin and eyes.
Pineapple is one of the most popular tropical fruit. Pineapple is rich in vitamin C, it also has fibers, and enzymes that are good for the digestive system and helps in maintaining ideal weight and balanced nutrition.
You can use either fresh or canned pineapples for this dish. But I decided to use the canned ones as they are softer and sweeter (as they are stored in a sugar syrup). If you are using canned pineapples, kindly rinse them under running water once you remove them from the syrup. We don’t want the sugar syrup in our raita.
Yogurt – 2 cups
Cucumber – 1 big one
Pineapple – 1 cup diced , save some for garnish.
Cumin powder – 1 tsp (freshly roasted and powdered is best)
Salt as per taste
Sugar – ½ tsp
Red chili powder – 1-2tsps
Chaat Masala – 1-2tsps
An Aerial view of the cool cucumber and pineapple raita
Peel and dice the cucumbers into small pieces in a vessel. Drain the water that seeps out of the chopped cucumber, we don’t want our raita to be very watery.
Use thick chilled yogurt, ensure that there is no whey else the raita will be watery.
If the yogurt is not thick, hang it in a cloth, so you can get the thick yogurt.
In a bowl add the yogurt, salt, sugar, cumin powder, 1tsp of red chilly powder and 1 tsp of chaat masala and stir well till the mixture becomes smooth and fluffy. Add in the diced cucumbers and pineapple chunks. After you prepare this keep it refrigerated.
Garnish with some red chilly powder and chaat masala powder before serving.
Serve the cool cucumber and sweet pineapple raita chilled, topped with a few chunks of pineapple. Enjoy this cool delight with your lunch/dinner.
A bowl of the cool cucumber and pineapple raita

Friday, August 29, 2008


I would like to send this for Sangeeth’s Eat healthy- Calcium rich event, as everyone knows that Yogurt is an excellent source of calcium. In fact, yogurt does milk one better, because its “active cultures” help digest the naturally occurring sugar (lactose) in milk. Everyone knows that a child suffering from Diarrhea is asked to abstain from milk, but it is advisable to eat yogurt when u suffer from diarrhea.



I could easily make a statement that Boondi raita is one of the most popular raitas. The "King" of raitas. This savory raita, is cold, crispy and tangy and what can be better than that. For those who don’t know, Boondi is a crispy gram flour savory, similar to rice crispies. You can buy boondi from Indian stores and alternatively you can make it at home.

To make Boondi at home


Gram Flour (besan) – 100 gms

Chilly powder – 1tsp

Salt as per taste

Oil to Fry


Mix the above ingredients with water to a creamy pouring consistency. In a wok heat some oil. When the oil is hot, reduce the flame. Now take a draining spoon and hold with your left hand over the hot oil and with your right hand pour the batter over the spoon and ensure that you don’t drop in one place but move the spoon all round while dropping, you will see that small balls of batter are getting fried in the oil. Keep the flame low and keep frying until the balls are golden and crisp. Remove with a strainer and place on kitchen towel to remove excess oil. Your boondis are ready.


Yogurt – 2 cups

Boondi – 1 cup

Cumin powder – 1 tsp

Salt as per taste

Red chili powder – 1-2tsps

Chaat Masala – 1-2tsps

Finely Chopped coriander leaves


Use thick cold yogurt. In a bowl add the yogurt and stir well till the mixture becomes smooth and fluffy. Add salt (be careful while adding salt as boondis also have salt), Cumin powder, 1tsp of red chilly powder and 1 tsp of chaat masala and mix well. The chaat masala adds the tanginess to the raita. Add ½ cup of boondi and mix gently. Keep refrigerated. When it is time to serve, you will notice that the Boondis have become soggy, this is how many people like it. But I like mine with some crunch to it, so before serving I add one tablespoon of crunchy boondi and garnish with some freshly chopped coriander leaves and sprinkled with some red chilly powder and chaat masala powder. Serve boondi raita chilled.

Tips: If you feel that the boondis are set with the yogurt when you pull out from the fridge, then u can add some more yogurt in and mix gently with a spatula, to loosen it up.

Some people like to add in the boondi at the time of serving. But I beg to differ, the boondis must be soggy(soaked in the yogurt), so when you put one spoon of this tasteful raita in your mouth not only do you get some of the soggy boondis but also the crispy ones. So I top up the raita with a spoonful of crispy boondis at the time of serving. Enjoy this raita as a side dish or meal accompaniment.

I would also like to send this for Sunita’s Think Spice….Think Cumin event as I have used Toasted Cumin powder in my recipe.

Saturday, August 16, 2008


Today is Rakshabandhan(Rakhi Poornima) and today is also Avniavittam(for the Yajurvedis) celebrated in South India by the Brahmins. On this day, the male members who wear the sacred thread change into a new one. This ritual is known as Upakarma which means Beginning. The sacred thread is known as Poonal, Jahnva, Janeyu, Yagnopaveetam. Offerings of water using a Pancha patra udrani (A special vessel with a special spoon, usually found in all brahmin houses) are made to the ancient Rishis, there are prescribed procedures and mantras to be chanted, this ritual is usually conducted by the family priest or the head of the family who has immense knowledge of the Vedas.
Yagnopaveetam has three threads, each consisting of three strands. These threads represent: Goddess Gayatri (Goddess of mind), Goddess Saraswati (Goddess of word) and Goddess Savitri (Goddess of deed).

One of the important features if this festival is chanting of the “Gayatri Mantras”.
It is said that, chanting Gayatri Mantra can make you feel warm in the coldest of winters.
This mantra contains the spirit and energy of all the mantras.
There is a traditional saying in Sanskrit;
“Gayantam traayate yasmaat Gayatri'tyadhiyate. (This means Whoever sings 'Gayatri' is protected”)

Usually on the Avniavittam day the Gayatri japam is recited 108 times by the Male members of the family.
Below is the Gayatri mantra;

Which means : (meaning explained below),
We meditate (Dhimahi) on the Spiritual Effulgence (Bhargas) of that Adorable Supreme Divine Reality (Varenyam Devasya), the Source or Projector (Savitur) of the three phenomenal world planes, the gross or physical (Bhuh), the subtle or psychical (Bhuvah), and the potential or causal (Suvah), both macrocosmically (externally) and microcosmically (internally). May that Supreme Divine Being (Tat) stimulate (Prachodayat) our (Nah) intelligence (Dhiyah), so that we may realize the Supreme Truth.

Festival At home.........
The Female members have to wake up early, take bath, sanctify the house and the courtyard, draw Kolam inside and outside the house and start cooking for the lord without tasting the food. The food is offered to the Lord, this procedure is called “Neivedhyam” after which the food is served to the male members after they complete the rituals.

There is a comic line for this festival that goes “Avniavittam Komanam, Pullai Porandhal Shobhanam” which means that this festival has more relevance to the male and the family that has a son (heir to the family), is considered lucky. This festival holds relevance to the males and implicates that a son is a heir to the family.

The food cooked for Avniavittam is special (No onions or garlic are used in the cooking) and it is served on a fresh green banana leaf.
It consists of ;
Rice, Paruppu, Ghee, Sambhar, Rasam, Beans or Cabbage Poriyal(Curry/Podutuval), Kootu, Avial(Mixed vegetables), Pachadi, Chakara Pongal/ Payasam, Paruppu vadai, Pappadams, Banana chips(salted and sweet).Of course no Brahmin meal is complete without the yogurt and there are yet a lot of things that are part of the menu, but these days with single unit families, a lot of things have disappeared but I have tried to retain the staple things onto my menu and strive hard to celebrate every festival as these are the memories that we give our I cooked up a storm......Saddhi chapadu(as they say) and served it all on a Banana Leaf......for that wave of nostalgia....

Here is a recipe of the Chakara Pongal
CHAKARA PONGAL (SWEET PONGAL) There are many ways to make this dish, some use yellow split lentil(moong dal) also in the recipe. But this is a quick and easy recipe, which my mom makes and always a hit at my home.
Raw rice – 1 ½ cup
Jaggery – 1cup
Ghee- 2-3 tbsps
Cashewnuts – 2 tbsps
Raisins - 2 tbsps
Cardamoms – 5
First cook the raw rice as usual. Keep aside. Now in a wok, add 2 tbsps ghee, add in the cashewnuts, raisins and cardamom powder and fry until slightly pink. Now add in the jaggery and about 1 cup water. Wait till the jaggery melts, if there are any lumps crush it with the back of a spatula. When the liquid starts to froth, Add in the cooked rice and stir well with the jaggery syrup. Keep on a low flame. Keep stirring once every 2 mins. As the jaggery starts to thicken, the mixture will become uniform. Add one tbsp of ghee and stir. You will notice that the mixture starts to leave the sides of the pain. This indicates that it is done. If you cook more than this, the rice will become crispy. Mix well, transfer to a silver vessel. Keep a basil leaf (Basil leaf is also known as “Haripriya”(liked by the Lord), read about Tulsi in my blog) on top and offer as Neivedhyam to God. After that serve hot. Enjoy this South Indian delicacy.

We call it Beans podutuval at home and some call it beans curry or beans poriyal.
French Beans – ½ kilo
Mustard seeds- 1 tsp
Udad dal - 1 tsp
Red chillies – 1-2
Grated Coconut - 2 tbsp
Turemric powder – 1 tsp
Asafetida – a pinch
Salt as per taste
Oil – 1 tbsp
Chop the Beans into small pieces, rinse in a colander and keep aside. Heat the oil in a wok and add the mustard seeds, when they start to splutter add the udad dal, when they are slightly pink add in the chillies broken into 2 pieces and fry for a minute. Now add the chopped French beans, turmeric powder, salt to taste and asafetida and mix well, Cook closed with a lid on a low flame and let it cook in its own juices. Open after about 3-4 minutes. Add some water if required. Cook till it is done. Once the beans are dry, add the grated coconut and mix well and cook for another 2 minutes till you get the faint aroma of the coconut. Serve hot with, rice and Sambhar / Rasam (Click on this link for the recipe in my blog)

and Cucumber – Tomato Pachadi for you;


Cucumber - 1
Ripe red & juicy tomatoes – 2
Curry leaves – A sprig
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Fenugreek seeds – ½ tsp
Asafetida – a pinch
Fresh Thick Yogurt – 5-6 big heaped tbsps
Salt as per taste
Vegetable cooking oil – 1 tbsp
Peel and chop the cucumber into small pieces, Chop the Tomatoes into small pieces also.
Put the chopped vegetables in a bowl, Add thick yogurt and salt as per taste and mix well.
Now in a small pan, take one tablespoon of cooking oil, Add the mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds, when the mustard seeds start to splutter, add a pinch of asafetida and the curry leaves, just fry a bit and pour this into the bowl. Mix well and serve with rice and curries.
You can find the recipe for Cabbage Poriyal and Avial here. (Click on the name which is a link to the recipe in my blog)

Thursday, August 7, 2008


Here's yet another post for Lore's Original Recipes Event

This is also known as Cucumber Raita in India. Raita or Pachadi is usually prepared by adding vegetables or savories to thick yogurt. This is considered very cooling to the body so it is served with spicy dishes. This recipe of mine is an ode to the Chef who prepared a similar raita at KK hospital(Singapore) where I delivered my second baby. I don’t know who prepared it but it used to taste awesome. The red jalapeno peppers have an awesome flavor and this raita is simply mindblowing. Don’t ever replace the red jalapeno peppers with any other chilly as the taste will not be the same. This is my version though, so here is yet another Original recipe for Lore's event.
Cucumbers - 1-2 big ones
Red Jalapeno peppers – 2
Yogurt – 10-12 tbsps
Mustard seeds -2 tsps
Fenugreek seeds – ½ tsp
Asafetida(Hing) - a pinch
Curry leaves – a sprig
Salt to taste
Oil – 1 tsp
Peel and grate the cucumbers in a vessel. Drain the water that seeps out of the grated cucumber, we don’t want our raita to be very watery. Use thick yogurt, ensure that there is no whey else the raita will be watery. If the yogurt is not thick, hang it in a cloth, so you can get the thick yogurt. Mix the yogurt with the grated cucumber with salt as per taste and keep aside.
Chop the red Jalapeno peppers, this pepper is not very spicy. If you don’t want even a tinge of spice, you can slit and remove the seeds. But if you don’t mind a little spicy punch to the raita, you can retain the seed. In my case, I de-seeded it as I only wanted the flavor of the jalapeno peppers and not the spice.
Now in a small pan, heat1 tsp oil, add the mustard seeds, when the mustard seeds starts to splutter, add a pinch of asafetida, now add the chopped jalapeno peppers and fry, the peppers should get slightly fried, they become even less spicy when fried. Add the curry leaves and fry. Now add this to the grated cucumber and yogurt mix and serve chilled. You can serve it with any meals or you can have it just like that. Indulge in this cool delightful condiment.

Friday, November 11, 2005


Thick Yoghurt – 2 cups
Ladies finger – 2 cups
Green Chilly paste – ½ tsp
Ginger paste – ½ tsp
Oil – for frying and tempering
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Asafetida - A pinch
Salt to taste
Curry leaves – 1 sprig (optional)
Coriander leaves for garnish (optional)
Chaat Masala – a pinch for garnish

Wash and dry the ladies finger. Cut the top and bottom and slice them into roundels.
Heat oil in a kadhai(wok), fry the ladies finger on medium heat un
til it is crisp. Don’t over fry it, as that will make it crumble like a biscuit. Drain the excess oil on a kitchen towel. Keep aside. Let it cool down. Add a pinch of salt to the fried Ladies finger.
In a bowl Take yogurt, beat the yogurt lightly, add green chillies and ginger paste, the fried ladies finger and some salt and mix well.
In a small pan, take a teaspoon of oil, add the mustard seeds and when they begin to crackle, add a pinch of asafetida and then the curry leaves. Pour this seasoning over the raita.
You can garnish with coriander leaves and chaat masala if required.
Serve chilled.


Related Posts with Thumbnails
LinkWithin Related Stories Widget for Blogs