How to make Bhel Puri | Bhel Puri for Kids - Cooking with Kids!

>>  Monday, April 26, 2010

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I was frequently asked if I make Bhelpuri at home or if Bhel puri is healthy for kids etc. I used to reply back saying yes, I have been making Bhel puri at home since my college days and it never was a tough nut to crack. It's only since blogging that I haven't actually made it. Come to think of it, I haven't made any of the chat items that used to frequent our dining table.

Konda loves bhel puri and would never say no to the stop wala bhel. But I always hesitate to give her. Alternative to that was Amma making it for it. Konda never used to believe that I could make it too. Well I thought maybe this summer I will finally make it for it. Having such sessions in mind, I was looking for recipes that a soon to be 9 year old can make herself.

When I announced the Kids Delight on Cooking with the Kids, I knew the first recipe that I wanted my daughter to make. I recently came across a recipe that was very simple, not involving the chutneys and all those elaborate process, yet very tasty. I immediately knew this recipe was for konda.

Konda has been enjoying her holidays with her friend K since her vacation started. Both the girls have been entertained by K's mom, who has been wonderful enough to occupy the girls with daily assignments of arts and drawing. Konda has been literally busy since her holidays started. I thought it was only fair that I do my small part in entertaining the girls and found that this cooking session was the best option.

I got all the things ready and told both of them about this session the previous day itself. Konda was so excited because I never allow her to do anything when I am cooking.




Konda was after me, asking when we were going to start. I said it was going to be in the evening. She was so restless and got her friend on dot.


I found a ready mixed Bhel mixture, which had the poha, sev, namkeen, friend ground nuts etc.


I decided to add boiled potatoes, tomato, onions, raw mango, carrots, boiled peanuts, coriander leaves, extra serving of Sev.


I pressure cooked potatoes. had all the vegetables ready. Once the potatoes were cooled, both Konda and K peeled the skin and chopped it fine.


Then came the carrot and raw mango grating. I chopped the onions and tomatoes finely and had the peanuts boiled too.


Out came the big bowl for each of them. The bhel and the sev were transferred to a bowl.


The girls took a ladleful of bhel mix, add a spoon of all the vegetables and shiftily mixed with spoon for a even mixing.


Transferred to a plate, garnished it with boiled peanuts, extra sev and coriander leaves.


Just as I remember, the taste was too good. I hardly missed the sweet or spicy chutney.

We were just in time to get this ready for the boys to come back from school. They all had a gala time snacking on the Bhel and sipping on the drink! I was glad that I finally was able to make Konda make something along with me and one which she loved making it with her friend. She was so happy telling her Tatha that she made it all by herself!

For the drink, I made a Chocolate Bourn vita Drink, which will be featured in Beyond Curries.

Best part was my parents liking this so much. They said this was really so good, so much better than the one made so spicy with chutneys.

Have you made any such interesting dishes with kids, do share them with me!

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Paneer Palak Tikki | Indian Cottage Cheese Spinach Patty - Healthy Snacks for Kids

>>  Wednesday, April 21, 2010

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In my quest to find low fat, healthy snacks for kids this is yet another Tikki that really gets everybody excited. Patties or Tikkis are such a wonderful snack that you can whip within minutes without much hassle. And it need not be that you need to plan for these easy to make, healthy alternatives for those chips or other junk food that's kids love so much.

This Paneer Spinach Tikkis were something that came about at home. Athamma was planning to make some Tikkis with paneer for a long time. When she couldn't get this done on time, it was chosen for a different time and finally never got around being done. We always have home made paneer at home stocked. So making this was also not so difficult to plan. Finally when we saw that we had spinach excess, it naturally had to get into other healthy ways for the kids to eat.

I was happy that this was done finally and not once but quite sometimes. I had to remember to take pictures as every time these were made, it vanishes before I even think about taking a picture.


Paneer Spinach Tikkis

Check here to know how I make Paneer at home

Paneer crumbled - 1 cup
Spinach - 1 bunch app
Onions - 1 medium
Ginger garlic paste - 1/2 tsp
Green Chilies / Red chili powder 1 tsp (as per taste)
Salt to taste
Wheat flour - 2 tbsp
Maida - 1 tsp
Bread Crumbs - 2 tbsp
Coriander leaves - handful
Ajwain/ Omam - 1/4 tsp


Method to prepare:

Crumble the paneer well. Wash and finely chop the spinach. In a bowl, take all the ingredients along with the flours. Mix well to get a smooth dough.

Ensure the tikki mix is not sticky, else add some more wheat flour.

Heat a pan with little oil. Divide the mix into small balls. Flatten each into 6' disc. Finally dust them well on bread crumbs.

Place on the hot pan, sprinkle few drops of oil. Cook on low flame for the tikkis to get cooked well.

Flip to the other side when it is done.

I made the potato peas Tikkis the same way.

Serve with ketchup

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Sagu Biyyam Muruku / Sago Muruku for Indian Cooking Challenge ~ Step by Step Recipe

>>  Thursday, April 15, 2010

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When you know to make muruku, you feel you can make anything. Still this muruku with Sago is really a challenge. I remember this being made many times by Amma, though I have never attempted it myself. It gives such a wonderful change to the regular murukus. I am sure you are going to enjoy this.

All those wonderful days during summer spent eating this comes to mind. And I hope to recreate those again.

I tried the sago muruku over the weekend. I made this along with my Mom, who was making this after a long time herself.


This is the Achu that we used.


All ingredients assembled together.


Soaked Sago in buttermilk.



Fried Gram Dal or Pappulu


Powdered flours, Fried gram dal is powdered and sieved to removed to get fine powder. The other yellow flour is besan.


Each ingredient measured.
Hot oil is poured over the flour, you will get bubbles when you pour it.

Add the sago first, followed by the buttermilk.



Mix everything well.

further more
Until you get something like this.


Heat Oil for deep frying and press the dough directly over the hot oil.

Sagu Biyyam Muruku / Sago Muruku

Rice Flour  2 cups
Besan flour  1/2 cup
Fried gram flour - 1/2 cup
Sago - 1/2 cup

Salt to taste
Curd - 50 gms (half of half cup)
Chile powder - 1/2 tsp or as per taste

Special Utensil

Muruku Achu

Method to prepare

Soak Sago in Butter milk for 3 hrs, please ensure that you soak it enough else you may risk having the sago burst.

Mix all the flour together, heat 50 gms oil, mix to the flour along with salt and chili powder. Then add the buttermilk soaked sago slowly and knead to a chapati dough consistency

Heat oil for deep frying.In the muruku achu, add the dough. When the oil is hot, press down directly as as murukus.

Cook on medium flame to ensure the muruku is cooked well.

Notes:

Ensure sago soaks in buttermilk well and is soft or else it will burst when you press it down in hot oil.
Cook on medium to ensure even cooking.

Fried Gram flour is fried channa dal that is available commercially. It is general sold as the dal, we have to powder it at home. This is also referred as chutney dal as it is used in making coconut chutney.



First time was a disaster as the Sago was not good. Meaning even after soaking for 3 hours, they didn't get soft. She realized that she didn't get the sago from the usual place. Normal time taken for her is about 2 hrs, by which time it is really soft.

We went ahead pressing the murukku only to have fire crackers. So everything went into dust bin.

Next day we got from the usual store. After soaking the usual time, the sago was really soft.

This time we got perfect murukkus. The taste was awesome. I remembered my childhood days all over again..

Another update, since we have Besan and Fried gram flour, these may not come out as the perfect murukku shaped. They may even break into long pieces. It is fine from what I hear from Mom.

To all my ICC members, please link your Sago Muruku post to Mr. Linky.

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Kid's Delight Wholesome Snacks Round up - Next theme!

>>  Thursday, April 8, 2010

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Summer is upon us and we find ways to dodge it. Well almost! One of the first thing that you get to notice is the heat, then is the restless children, trying to find ways to keep themselves occupied and over anxious parents like us, trying to find ways to keep the kids occupied!

Konda has still one exam to go, after which she will have her Summer vacation before the next academic starts. She is carefree to do what she wants for the next 40 days. As every time, I remember my own Summer vacation and the fun days that were, comes to mind. Parents rarely thought much on how to keep us occupied. We used to go out for playing in the morning, come back for lunch, rest for a while and again venture out. This used to be the schedule every single day. Unless we plan for a outdoor vacation.

Sadly though it is no more such an idyllic scene. Kids can hardly venture out, because there isn't enough green places for them to play and it is so HOT!

Parents are forced to keep them indoors and even more frustrated because they now have to find ways to keep them occupied.

This is where you are going to help me! Next theme in the Kid's Delight is around finding out ways to help and give ideas to pressured parents to bang on things that they can do with kids.

You want to know what you got to do? Well post some interesting crafts and other related activities that will engage kids. This may include hand crafts, hand works, just about anything that your kid does or you did as a kid. Get those ideas pouring ok!


Next is about "Cooking with Kids" Now is the time you can introduce them into kitchen. Show them which simple dishes that they can prepare on their own. I have few already in mind for my daughter. So really appreciate if you can throw more ideas on this theme.

So from now until May 15th, share your interesting ideas on Crafts, Simple Dishes that kids can make on their own. Post on your blog, with a link back to this post.

Enter your details into the Kid's Delight Form below this post!

Lets now check out some really cool ideas for Snacks!

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Sharmilee makes this delicious Masala Bread Upma as a perfect evening snack for a rainy day. Though this makes a great snack for the pack


Umm razeen gives spicy twist to the sweet french toast and makes a Spicy French Toast. It works both well for a breakfast and for a bite in between!

Next from Umm razeen comes a snack that has now become a part of their regular menu. And finally gave a name too as Strawberry Syrup Sandwich

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For a healthy choice, Kiran tries her hand at making a cake that is good to eat and tasty too. Check out her A ..Z Cake which is also Eggless that got done using all healthy alternatives!

Reading Johanna, I felt I was running around her kitchen, trying to keep Sylvia, her daughter in place, while she bakes those tempting treats for her. Raspberry and Banana Muffins sounds way out of the world. And I am surely going to give it a try!

If you want some dhokas, sorry I read again to see Madhuri referred to these Corn & Makkai ki atta Dhoklas read the lovely tale behind this snack. I can have them as a meal too!

Priya Suresh sends in two delicious muffins to boot! First being a Eggless muffin made with Banana, Oats & Chocolate, because she had over ripe bananas on hand and next Eggless Pumpkin,Oats & Nutella Muffins


Radhika makes this Mom's Sweet Muffins one of those wonder dishes that can you help you during times you are struck for ideas!

Cakes are fun but making them savory is even more! If you dont' believe, check out the Savoury Vegetable Cake from Sowmya!

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Srividhya sends in a Skewers with Fruits that kids can pack. Check out her Fruit Skewers to see how it looks!


Swathi sends in this famous kerala dish the Ethapazham puzhungiyathu or boiled plantains which is packed with energy!


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Then we have Kamalika sending us two innovative Egg based dishes.



First one is the Stuffed mini boule and the other called as the Egg Delight!


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Not wanting to miss out the chance of eating with her kid, Deepti bakes the best pizza thats around the corner. Her Wheat Bread Veggie Pizza can pose stiff competition to the other!

For another wonderful idea for pizza is from Smitha, who makes Tortilla Pizza. I am sure kids love this snack!


Savory treats are such tempting ones. Espcially if it looks like these Onion Cookies that Sowjanya came up with! They not only satisfy your evening high teas, but fill as such wonderful dish for kids snacks!

Turmericnspice says one can never feel guilty after eating this snack that they made. Stuffed Zucchini Boats are perfect for noth adults and kids alike!

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Sweatha had a bunch of Flax seeds and came about this very healthy snack that gets done in no time and gobbled up in no time! Sounds like a perfect snack to pack for the little ones! Protein Rich Flax Seeds Balls looks very quick.



Having to whip up a quick snack in challenge that Kanchana has, she finally hits on this Kid Friendly Pasta.

Srividhya sends in Fruit & Milk Parfait for Breakfast that she made.

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Madhuri sends in some colourful chat that serves as a perfect snack for kids. Though this may not be packed, you can still send in the content! These Sweet-potato Chat can perk up anybody!

Priya Mitharwal sends in two delicious snacks that can be packed and sent. But I know they may not stay put for so long, looking as tempting as they do! Aloo Matar Kachori & Namakpara are just perfect!


Being a paneer lover, I can't say no. I am sure you do too when you see Srividhya's Paneer Balls

Then we have Sesame Squares from Tazaika.

As the lone sweet dish, Suma's Beetroot Dates Halwa makes it worthy while to drool!

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Moving on to some tiffin items that can be served as snacks too, we find Priya Suresh sending us Pumpkin Pancakes.

Then we have Silpa sending us Moong dal dosa and a Upma to pair!



If you care for a butter then these dosas are excellent choice! Butter Dosa from Srividhya sounds just right!

Finally we have Knolkhol Parathas and Spinach Carrot Dosas from Suma to wrap up this round up!

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I hope I have included everybody's entry. Do let me know if I have missed out!

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Ragi Roti with Peas Stuffed | Indian Flat Bread Finger Millet Recipe

>>  Friday, April 2, 2010

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One really wishes things turn out perfect. When one wants to diet, one can and when want to indulge one can. How marvelous that will be right? Sadly it is not so perfect all the time. When you want to diet, you get tempted with so many delicious treats that either you are forced to make or get forced by others. You indulge in guilt, thinking all the time how the scale is going to shoot up the next time you torture it. One of the best jokes that I remember on the scale has been the all time funny one. When a chap stands on the scale, the poor scale pleads back, "One at a time please!" Imagine if that could happen real time!

I plead guilty of not following the strict diet that I wrote down here. The very reason why I published was hoping on declaring it out, I will follow it religiously. But then hey, what's fun if I follow it without any break. So here I am with all broken diets, still trying to have a grip on what might go in! Though I confess I try my level best to follow the diet. Actually as long as I was updating everyday I was following it so well. Only when I stopped it almost stopped being strict. Anyway it is another effort

Anyway I was happy that there was no increase but rather no loss too. Still it is a good sign. Coming to the recipe for today. This was one of those healthy breads that is good during dieting. I followed the same original way it is done, except made it even more healthy by adding mashed peas to the dough.


Athamma normally makes Ragi Roti by patting it down on a muslin cloth, as shown in the Ragi Roti Post.
But this time, she made it as the way she does Jonna Roti. Please check out the video we took on making Jonna Roti

Ingredients Needed:

Ragi / Millet Four - 1 cup
Salt to taste
Water

Peas stuffing

Fresh Peas / Cooked Peas - 3 tbsp
Salt to taste
Green Chili paste - 2 tsp
Coriander leaves
If you are using dried peas, pressure cook the peas and mash the peas. With fresh peas, just mash them with ladle and mix in the salt, chilli paste and coriander leaves together.

Mix this paste to the Ragi flour and proceed as how it is shown in Jonna Roti post.

So this was my lunch during the weekdays. Planning to make other breads with whole grains for lunch, instead of the usual Goduma dosa/ Wheat flour Dosa that I have been carrying.


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Vermicelli Pulao | Semiya Pulav Recipe | Quick Kid Friendly Meals

>>  Thursday, April 1, 2010

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Best of the dishes get created when you are looking out for new ways to make the usual ones!.After thinking only of Dosas and Idlis for breakfast everyday, alternating with bread, we ran out of ideas. And on top with the boys refusing to touch Ven Pongal, we had no choice to think about. anything new It was almost like a threat that we were treated to. Both Peddu and Chinnu will come running to check what breakfast I was packing. I try to dodge most times, but I get protests from them in the evening and feel very bad.

Thinking of what else can make a good breakfast, we though Vermicelli can be used in a better way. Of course the vermicelli upma was out of question. Nobody likes it though on the rare occasion I make it, it does get completed. It was then that Athamma said she wanted to try a different one. So finally came this dish into existence. Cooking Vermicelli as a pulao. When I told Amma, she said she had made this many times. I, naturally won't know as I don't look at any vermicelli dish.

Most surprise was Konda loved eating the Vermicelli Pulao so much that she wanted it for school, which I packed for her. This not only gets done fast, it tastes really so very different. Why it is called pulao is because we used the same, well almost the same ingredients as in a pulao. 


Vermicelli Pulao ~ Semiya Pulav

Ingredients Needed 

Vermicelli / Semiya - 1 cup
Onions - 1 medium
Tomato - 1 medium
Ginger Garlic paste - 1/2 tsp
Cloves - 2
Cinnamon - 2"
Green Chilies - 2 long
Bay leaf -1 
Cardamom - 2
Salt to taste
Oil - 2 tsp
Ghee - 1 tsp (opt)
Water - 2 cups
Cashew nuts for garnish

Method to prepare:

Heat a non stick pan and dry roast the vermicelli till slightly golden. Remove and keep aside.

Heat the pan with oil, add the whole spices, saute for a minute. Then add the slit green chilies and onions. Fry till the onions are turning colour, add the ginger garlic paste. Cook till the paste is well done.

Then add the tomato and salt. cover and cook in sim till the tomatoes get soft. Then add water. Bring to boil.

Simmer and slowly add the roasted vermicelli. Mix everything well and cover with lid.

Stir in between to mix. Let it cook till done.

Finally garnish with roasted cashew nuts and coriander leaves.

Notes: I used a very thin vermicelli. Water ratio depends on the thickness and how gooey you want your pulao.

Increase the spices as per taste for more spicy pulao. I made this a bit mildly for my daughter. 

The taste of the whole spices along with Vermicelli was fantastic! Do try and let me know. Would love to hear how else you cook vermicelli.

Other Vermicelli Recipes


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