Monday, October 27, 2014

Nature's holiday land Oman

Nature's holiday land Oman

 
We planned for Oman trip and booked our flight tickets-Bahrain to Muscat, Muscat to Salalah round trip. Hotel accommodation was booked. Now we need to plan the itinerary.I searched the internet for itineraries and also the places to visit. There ended our preparation for the trip. On reaching Muscat, we rented a car from Budget Cars as no other car rental agency had any cars. We asked for directions to our hotel Al Maha International hotel in Al Ghubrah. We drove for a long time following the directions we received and we felt we almost lost the route. We stopped and asked few people and continued driving and finally reached the hotel. After check in, we again continued to Saravana Bhavan hotel in Ruwi to have dinner.

  Next day we planned to cover the places covered by the Big Bus tours. We had breakfast at the hotel. Breakfast was not great as there were many Non vegetarian dishes leaving us vegetarians with less choice. We first visited the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, which was very close to our hotel.Then from there we left for Al Qurrum Park.The Park had a big fountain, but it would be switched on only in the evening. There were few gym equipments which could be operated without electricity in the park. We just went around the park and left for Al Qurrum beach. The beach was shallow , but we didn’t go in the water , just clicked some pics.We then went to Royal Opera House .Took the photos from outside and left  for Matrah.But later  my Colleague told me , we can enter the Opera House even if there is no Programme and also visit the restaurants inside..Matrah souq was closed and supposed to be open only at 4 pm.So we took photos at the Corniche and had lunch in a restaurant (the only restaurant that was open) near the Matrah souq. We drove through the Matrah fort, Museum and left for Al Alam Palace. There are two sides to the Palace. We visited 1 side near the 2 forts and left .But on the way to the View point of the port; we saw the other side and stopped by. Then went to the viewpoint and drove past the parliament and other big palace to Ruwi.

   We reached the hotel and left for Saravana Bhavan again for dinner. We bought sim card for GPRS and internet access. Next day we left for Nizwa using the GPRS, roads were very good. There were 2 Major roads in Muscat. One is the Muscat expressway; this connects all the places nearby Muscat and the other Sultan Qaboos highway ....As long as you are on these roads you cannot get lost.

Nizwa is a 2 hour drive from Muscat. Nizwa is an old city and was the capital of Oman before Muscat. We went inside the Souq and then discovered that the Nizwa fort and castle are also just behind the souq. The souq had all beautiful pottery and the lovely lamps. Nizwa fort had a small museum inside. The fort had big rooms and the terrace had stairs to climb up and watch over the outside. The Fort had a mechanism of watching from upstairs for people who come near the entrance and to shoot them or even pour boiling oil over the enemies. The castle had a dates room where dates bags are arranged one over the other, dates juice is extracted naturally due to the weight of the bags lying on top of it. This juice was channelled through channels built. There were rooms for the shepherd. The sheep without the owner were brought to the fort and when the owners came, the owners were fined for their irresponsibility. The fort had a prison too. The castle had kitchen, guest rooms, room of the king and queen, Children’s room, mosque with place to wash legs before prayer. The fort had a coffee grinder too from Britain.

From Nizwa we drove to Bahla fort.Bahla fort was very big with separate buildings.Bahla fort is in the UNESCO list of Heritage sites. The fort also had dates room, rooms for reading, many round pillars. The site had 2 storeyed buildings. From Bahla we left for Hoota caves, but only on reaching there we found that the caves were closed for maintenance. We then we left for Wadi Ghul as we had many places to visit from there. But GPRS didn’t give the directions and there were no directions on the way either. We wanted to visit the Diana point, Jebel Mountains. But we couldn’t reach Wadi Ghul even after travelling a long distance.So we returned back to Nizwa.We couldn’t  find Falaj Daris either, the biggest natural water system.So we halted and had all snacks in our bag for the late lunch and continued to Muscat. It rained on the way and we had early dinner as we already skipped lunch and reached hotel.

Next day we left for Al Daiqah Dam. The Dam was really good with green water and a lovely garden. From there we went to the place where the water was flowing out from the dam and took some photos. In Oman, wherever we went we saw people camping and picnicking. They were so organised in planning for the picnic. We left to Bimmah sink hole. The sink hole was really like a big well. The water was clean and looks like the water was getting replenished.On the way back, we went to the beach.The beach had a lot of urchins. The beach was clean and green. From there we left for Matrah souq as we couldn’t go there last time. Then we shopped around Matrah souq and went to the Shiva temple near Matrah and left for Ruwi, had dinner again in Saravana Bhavan and left for the hotel.

Next day we left for Nakhal fort.It was 1 hour drive from Muscat. The fort had many guns in all the rooms. The guns were iron casted and heavy. The fort was a small one.Just close by is the hot spring Ain Thwarah.The whole area near the spring was a picnic spot with people swimming, cooking,camping,singing.From there we left to  hotel, Checked out and  had lunch. Then we went to Al Qurrum beach and from there to Oman Oil and Petroleum Exhibition, but unluckily it was closed. Read that Oman Oil and Petroleum Exhibition is very informative and very good. So we left for the airport many hours before, returned the car and left to Salalah.

In Salalah, we were picked by the Hotel Haffa House from the airport. We skipped dinner then we slept and woke up next day. The hotel looked a little old. The room was big, but the AC didn’t give any cooling and also it made enough noise to be compared with a powerful motor. The room also smelled of some rustic flavour. We struggled to sleep the first day. The breakfast at the hotel was very good. It was even better than our hotel in Muscat. 
          After Breakfast, we had to rent a car, so we went to Airport which is around 1-2 kms from Haffa House by walk. We rented a Mazda 6 new car and did some shopping to buy water and left to Mirbat.Our first stop in Mirbat was the Mirbat fort. The fort was closed but it was on the sea shore, so we took few photos and left for the Tomb of Zuhayr. There was a big graveyard next to the tomb. Then we left for the Tawi Atayr Sink hole or Well of Birds. 
           On the way to sink hole we saw the anti gravity road. There were many cars going slowly on either side of the road. So we tried driving in neutral gear, and left for the sink hole. The sink hole unlike the one near Muscat was too deep and also too huge. We couldn’t really see the water except for the crater. I read that there are many varieties of species of water life in the sink hole. After this sink hole we tried to go to Tayq cave but after driving for some time, we couldn’t find the way, so we returned back to the viewpoint, which was on the way towards the sink hole. From here we again drove along the anti  gravity road for few minutes and left for Sumhuram Village.
          Sumhuram Village is on the UNESCO World Heritage site and it’s an archaeological park. We drove inside the park, and then stopped to see the main building. There was a Temple of Sun, other small rooms. Without a guide its difficult to appreciate the place. The park is just adjacent to a Water lake. Its green water was very refreshing. The Park has separate buildings for Labourers. It had a museum with all the posters. From there we returned to the Taqah fort/Khor  Rawri .Taqah fort was also closed. We skipped our lunch today too.We asked the locals about Wadi Darbat waterfall nearby and they said there is no water in this season there.Also the map showed a backwater nearby, but the locals said that there is nothing like that. Hence we left for the Museum of the Land of Frankinsence.Then we realised that the site Al Baleed which is an archaeological park and also one of the UNESCO Heritage sites is also inside the same place.We first went inside the museum, but we must have seen the park first. Because after the museum when we  wanted to go see the ancient site, it was dark and we could hardly understand stuffs.The museum had separate  halls for architecture,coins,ships,gifts,etc.The site had separate cities , surrounded by backwater and it was used as a port  .It was a big walk around the site and then we returned to the hotel.
        After  getting  refreshed, we left for dinner to the road behind us. We then reached Cascade restaurant. We went inside and there were many Indians which assured us we were in a good restaurant. We ordered for Veg biryani, but on getting the food I received few chicken pieces in it. We reported this to the server. Also when I asked for paneer tikka, the server asked us to order some other dish, but I refused. Later on receiving the food, the dish wasn’t paneer tikka, because paneer has to be marinated and  grilled and then put in a tomato sauce, but the paneer wasn’t grilled at all.Anyways the food was tasty and  reasonable. Then we returned to Lulu to get some stuffs for the next day and left to hotel.

   On the next day we left for Mughsayl first. Mughsayl beach and blowholes were amazing. The Marneef cave was also big and nice. The blowholes didn’t give a shower but just a sprinkle, because it wasn’t season. But everything nature has to offer is beautiful. Then we left for Taqah for the many springs. We initially went to Ain Ishrat which was nothing but a dry crater. From there to Ain Atlum and Ain Tabraq.Ain Atlum was dry again with no water but the huge mountain was really great. I could imagine how the spring would be with the water during season.Ain Tabraq had water flowing from a hole. On the way back the same spring was flowing like a waterfall down.Ain Atlum and Ain Tabrooq were twin springs. 
          Then we left for Ain Razat.The water spring was a flowing from many sources from the mountain.The water was clear and there was a cave near the spring on the top. Also the spring had a big nice park, we stopped for some time in the park to eat our snacks for lunch. Most of the days in Oman we skipped lunch and had our snacks from our backpacks. Then we left for the main city, and then we came across a signboard saying Ain shahalnawt.So we decided to see the spring as well. It was really cool with water flowing all over the place and also a small green pool where people were swimming. 
            We also went to Tomb of Mohammed of Arabia. Then we went to tomb of Abir Bin Hud, it was a small tomb near Crowne Plaza hotel in the middle of a farm. Then we also went to the Tomb of Al Nabi Umran which was just on the same road as our hotel. We drank tender coconut in one of the stall near Al Baleed which was selling all farm fresh stuffs. Then we left to the hotel.Then we left for the Salalah Gardens Mall. Roamed around and had dinner in the food court at Kabab Bollywood.Next day we checked out and returned our car at airport and left for Muscat. We were there in Muscat airport for 4-5 hrs. Then boarded the flight to Bahrain.

Overall I loved Salalah for all its nature places and would love to go out picnicking in those places. Muscat was more Indians and busy. Searching for places and going around on our own gave much flexibility and made the trip adventurous. Overall very good experience.
BIMMAH SINK HOLE
Mughsayl beach
Nizwa fort
Daiqah Dam
Ain Tabrooq
Ain Shahnawt
Bimmah sinkhole
Sultan Qaboos mosque
Al Alam Palace
Royal Opera House
Matrah Corniche

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

SPECTACULAR JORDAN

We decided to tour Jordan after seeing its spectacular places on films. We did a lot of research on the internet about the places we need to visit and stay. We booked our tickets online for the travel. We were searching about the hotels to stay, the rooms, facilities, place, etc. During this time we had been to the Jordan embassy to apply for Visa and I picked 1 book and 1 flyer from VisitJordan. These materials had lot of information about the places to visit and the other details required including 3 itineraries …Things made easy!! Wow! We don’t need to plan anymore that was my thoughts after seeing the itinerary. We visited the Visit Jordan website and there were a list of websites of tour operators. We handpicked few and contacted them through email, telephone. We received a prompt reply from Jordan Experience Tours. They gave us an itinerary with the cost. Then we asked them to add some more places to visit and chose our hotels. The package was ready and we were told we will be picked at the airport and that we can pay the package cost to them there in Jordan.
We reached Jordan from Bahrain in Etihad airways. We were picked at the airport by the driver Mr.Bassim. We insisted on meeting the sales person of Jordan experience Tours who was communicating with us over email. So we went to their office, met the lady and paid the package cost. Then we were dropped at RUM hotel for stay. After taking rest and freshening up we went for a walk and reached The Galleria Mall, Amman. We walked around, took few pictures and returned to the hotel after buying some Nestle water in a store just next to Rum hotel. We were served dinner in hotel.

 On the next day after breakfast we left to Citadel. Amman has Roman, Turkish, Muslim civilization. The Citadel is a city destroyed by the earthquake in 749AD.There is a mosque, Temple of Hercules, Cemetry,WatchTower,Well,Souq, Palace, Houses, Caves used as tombs,TurkishBath,Palace Tower inside the Citadel. We hired a tour guide and went around Citadel.The Citadel had a very good view of Amman and it had a big museum showcasing the pottery, coffins, warfare, ornaments restored from there and from Jerash. Then we left to Roman Theatre in Amman.There is a museum inside the place. Then we left to see the desert castles. The Desert Castles were built as a rest house for people going on a pilgrimage to Mecca or for those who are hunting in the desert. Since the castles are built with sand stones, the temperature inside the castle is very low keeping it cool. First we went to Qasr Al Kharana Castle.this was a big one and in the centre there is no roof and anyone in the first floor can look into the centre of the castle. The rooms were very big to accommodate many people. Then we left to Um Al Khas Desert Castle. It had painting on the floor, walls, Cielings.The paintings were being restored by UN and work was going on when we had been there. This castle is in the world heritage site list because it is the only building restored from the Umayan period.The castle also had mosaic work in its paintings. Then next we visited Azrak castle.It was a very big one with a huge empty space in the middle and many empty rooms.It was built for soldiers to stay. It had stone doors and 1 storey. There was a well and mosque. It was built using asphalt stones. After the visits we had lunch in a local restaurant and we were dropped at hotel. We again went around wakalat street .We had avocado and honey milkshake, strawberry milkshake at lebnani snack. Awesome taste. Then we took a taxi and reached Mecca Mall. Then had some Indian snacks there in an Indian Restaurant and left back to hotel and had dinner.

Some Knowledge sharing: There are 19 hills in Jordan. There are colours in Jordan flag: White Umayan rule Green Fatima rule Black Ottomon Rule Red Hashemite Kingdom 7 stars are the 7 phrases of Quran.(knowledge given by the Guide at Citadel)..

 On the 2nd day, we left the hotel after breakfast and reached UM Qaais after a looooonnnnng travel. In Umqaais, we hired a local guide Ahmed.Umqaais was a whole city built by Romans. It was in the shape of Cross. It had a nympheaum,Shops,theatre,Church,Octagon point, Temple of God of Fertility,WaterChannels,A good Viewpoint, Houses of people who lived there. The people were living there for a long time till recently. There was a school there which had been turned into a restaurant there. The roads had diagonal laying of stones for easy movement of chariots. The stones were shaped into bumps because of the chariot wheels going on them. It had a museum inside it where the different statues of the god of fertility was restored and kept. This city was also destroyed by earthquake. Then we again travelled for a long time and reached Jerash. We bought tickets and went for Lunch in a nearby restaurant. The food was good. We had some dessert like gemat. Then we went to Atljun castle. Atljun castle is high up on the hill. Walking just few meters on the steep road tore my muscles apart…Took some rest and went inside the castle. The castle was built high on the top to check for any enemy movement. The military base was stationed there by the ARAB Rulers. After the tired uphill climbing and going around, we left for Jerash . At exactly 5 PM we reached Jerash in 30 minutes. Then we arranged for a guide and rushed inside. Jerash city was built by Romans. It has an Oval Centre, west gate and north gate, 1 arch to commemorate the visit of Roman King, A Very big temple of Jupiter, A temple of the God of hunting, 18 Churches, 1 nymphareum, 1 hypodendrum where the chariot races were held, 1 olive oil press, the colonnaded street, and 2 theatres at two different locations of the city. One private bath and 1 public bath. Later we went to Mr.Basim’s home. We had some Turkish coffee and few desserts. Loving family who welcomed us well. We went to the hotel, had dinner and took rest.

On 3rd day, we had breakfast, did checkout and left with a new driver Mr.Baher.On the way to Madaba, we went to the automobile showroom, but it wasn’t opened yet. So we continued to Madaba church. Madaba is the mosaic city. The church has a mosaic map where all the Christian places are marked. The Church itself has many mosaic hangings. Then we left to a mosaic workshop where we were explained about the art of making mosaics and the artificial mosaic mimic painting on pottery. I bought few Dead Sea salts and Dead Sea pack in the workshop. Then we left to Mt.Nebo where Moses tomb is present. There we saw the serpentine cross standing high above us. Pope John Paul has visited there and it’s a very holy place for Christians. We can see the different places where Moses and Jesus were present from the viewpoint. It’s said that Moses went into the desert with a stick and sphere which turned into a snake. Its believed that anyone bitten by snake can be cured if they see the serpentine cross. From Mt.Nebo we went to Beyond the Bethany. This is that place where Jesus was baptised. We had to wait for an hour for the bus to take us inside as private vehicles are not allowed. Then we went to the river where Jesus was baptised. Then we were taken to the border between Jordan and Israel and touched the holy water of the Jordan River where Jesus was once christened. We saw the people from Israel on the other bank of the river. We also saw the Church of John who baptised Jesus. Then went to Hotel Warwick at Dead Sea. After lunch at the hotel, we went to the Dead Sea, had a nice float with the Dead Sea pack. The water in the Dead Sea was oily, salty and also little itchy and caused little irritation. After the float, had a bath, swam in the swimming pool and went to the room. In the room we had a nice view of the sunset. Then had dinner and slept.

 On the next day we had breakfast and checked out from hotel and left to Mt.Mukawir castle. On the way we stopped for a photo of the hot springs from the mountain. The Mukawir castle is where the John the Baptist was beheaded by the king upon his woman’s request. It had 2 pillars and the castle was very steep and too much to climb. We didn’t climb the whole stretch. Then we went to Karak Castle, it was a 2 storied castle. It was destroyed and later rebuilt again. It was used as a place to view the entire city. It had balcony, windows and ventilators. It was biggest of all castles we visited. Then we left to The Dana village. Dana village is where the Dana biosphere is. It is the place where people who go trekking rests and carry their journey. It has been restored using US Aid. The stone houses have been used as rooms for the rest houses. We had a lovely view of the Dana biosphere. Then we travelled to Little Petra. Little Petra is a miniature version of the actual Petra. Little Petra has many buildings, with 2 and 3 rooms. These rooms have ventilation, channel for water and other facilities. The interior looks painted and there is a painted room.The sand stones are scooped and looks like a man’s face. After taking a walk around the little Petra which in itself has an hour of touring, we left to Petra and checked into EDOM Hotel. This hotel is only 5 minutes walk to the Petra Visitors centre. After checking in we went for a walk to buy water .Then we had dinner and slept.

Next day was the most tiring day of the entire tour. We had breakfast and left to Petra. We had a guide for an hour. He had studied medicine but had taken guide profession as this is more profitable. We walked inside Petra listening to all that the guide was talking about. We were told about the Bedouin people who lived in Petra till recently. They were sent to the nearby location and allowed to come and sell goods, crafts and to operate other shops, camel, horse, donkey ride. We saw the main entrance, the red snapper, temple of sun, the carvings on the walls, the water channels. After walking through the passage , we got a sneak peek of the Treasury. We weren’t allowed inside the Treasury as this is stopped now to prevent the erosion of the sandstones. The Treasury has 2 tombs in the entrance .Inside there is a big hall and 2 rooms. In the centre is a tomb. The Bedouin people believed that it contains treasure and shot at the building. The bullet marks can be seen on the building. Then we walked from there passing the Highest Place of Sacrifice, other tombs. We then reached nympheum.The guide bid us bye, explaining the different places we need to see. We went to the church, the different cemeteries. The two storied cemetery which looks painted and had good acoustics. Then we went to the temple of Lion God and passed the colonnaded street. Then we took a donkey ride to the monastery and returned back. We were extremely tired. Walked and walked extremely exhausted and reached the treasury. From the treasury to the entrance where the horses are available, we stopped at 2 places for rest. We then took 2 horses 1 each and took a ride till a little before the ticket counter. I was extremely tired unable to keep a step forward, but I managed to reach a restaurant just before EDOM Hotel. I had my lunch there at around 5 pm.I ordered Shawarma but it was a big bread with grilled chicken unlike what I have eaten in Bahrain. I didn’t like it, but I had starved and need to eat something to get my energy and reach my hotel room. I went to hotel, took rest. I was really doubtful if I can really walk for Petra by night. We already took tickets for Petra by night. We had a bath and refreshed. We had dinner again within 2 hours of eating lunch at 7 pm and left for Petra by night. I was still unsure if I would be able to walk again till treasury. But walking in is down hill, hence I reached treasury without any effort. We were served Bedouin tea. There were performances of music from rababa, shababa.Then a small story telling. The whole place from the entrance till treasury was illuminated only by candles .This was lovely. Then we walked back to the entrance which is uphill. I dreaded this but I was able to walk without taking any rest. We had movenpick ice-cream and reached hotel. Took rest.

Next day we had breakfast and checked out and left to WadiRum.We stayed at the Rose Camp in WadiRum.We had lunch and waited for the jeep to pick us up for jeep ride. We went for a 4 hour jeep ride. We went to the house of Lawrence of Arabia, the mushroom, the natural arch, the place with inscriptions by the nabateans, the final arch with the Lawrence of Arabia face. We couldn’t see the sunset as the climate was bad. We reached our camp and refreshed ourselves. We then watched the way the buried dinner is excavated. We had dinner and went to our tent. We just couldn’t sleep in the tent because there was no air and we were feeling stuffed and heat. We slept for 3-4 hours.

On the next day we woke up and got ready for the air balloon ride. We were picked up from the camp by the company. We went to the place of action; the air balloon was aired and made ready. But finally due to the weather, the balloon was swaying left and right, so the driver of the air balloon said we will wait for some time. We waited, but the climate was the same, so the ride was cancelled. We were dropped back at the camp. We had breakfast at the camp and left for Aqaba. On the way to the hotel, we went to Aqaba birds observatory, watched the birds.Then left for Marine Aquarium, watched many new types of fishes –camouflaged ones,turtles,eels,etc.Then we passed through the city to the Mamoluk fort. We watched it from outside, since it was at a low level from the road. Then we left to Marina Plaza. We checked in the hotel. We had lunch in the hotel and went to sauna, steam bath, swimming pool, Red sea beach. We then had bath and left to the Red Sea beach again and took pictures. We left in the hotel’s shuttle bus to the city. We roamed around the city for 2 hours, looked around the souqs, shopping, went to a park nearby, to movenpick hotel and had ice cream there and went back to the post office and left to the hotel in the shuttle bus. We had dinner and slept.

 On the next day we woke up and found heavy rain. We had breakfast and checked out and left. We had to reach the Amman airport by 2 pm for the flight back. We were tensed as we heard that the roads are blocked as the mountains have flooded the roads due to erosion by rain. The roads were flooded too. Since there was a road inside the village we were able to reach our destination on time. Thanks to Mr Baher our driver.Mr Baher was a little rough and arguing and we had difference of opinions. But professionally he was very good. We tipped him heavily because we reached the airport on time and entered the airport. We did some chocolate shopping and boarded the flight. We had a nice time in Jordan with all people very courteous and helpful. The Place is also a very good with nature, history blended into one another. I bought few magnets in Petra. Bought the colour sand bottle from Petra, Dead Sea salts, Dead Sea Pack, Loads of memories from Jordan.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Chicken Chettinad


This recipe is from Sanjeev kapoor's book.Chicken recipes.Tried them many a times and everytime its just great.I have some modifications to the dish.

Ingredients:
Chicken: 1/2 kg
Red chillies: 3-4 nos
Grated coconut:handful(optional since adding coconut reduces the spicyness of the dish)
Coriander seeds:1 tsp
Cumin seeds: 1tsp
Cardamons: 2 nos
Cloves: 2 nos
Cinnamon : 1 pc
Fennel seeds: 1tsp
Ginger:2 tsp chopped
Garlic: 2 tsp chopped
Oil:3 tsps
Onion : 1 large Chopped
Tomato: 2 med size chopped
Curry leaves:handful
Turmeric powder: 1/ TSP
Coriander leaves: handful
Red chiili powder: 1tsp
Salt: to taste

Method:
Saute the red chillies, corinader seeds, fennel seeds,cumin seeds, coconut,cinnamon, clove,cardamons in a little oil and grind to a fine paste along with fresh ginger, garlic.

Heat oil in a pan, add onions and fry them.Add curry leaves and the ground paste and fry.Then add tomatoes, chilli powder, salt,turmeric powder.
Add chicken and some water and cook them kept closed.

Finally garnish with coriander leaves.

You can try the recipe with mushroom for vegetarians.Probably name it Mushroom chettinad. :)

Kodubellas from leftover upma


Yes I tried this recipe yesterday.It came out well and thought why not share it.
This recipe is from http://swapnasridhar.blogspot.com.Of course I made some changes as usual.

Here goes the recipe:
Ingredients:
Left over upma:2 cups
Rice flour: 3 tbsp
Maida: 2 tbsp
Salt: to taste
Chilly powder: 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder: 1/2 tsp
Oil: to deep fry

Method:
First remove any slit red/green chillies in upma if any.
Then mix all the ingredients except oil.
Take a ball of the mixture and roll between hands to make it into shape of thin rope.
Just seal the ends to make a ring.
Deep fry in hot oil.
Serve with ketchup or it also tastes gud without ketchup.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

banana flower vadas(vazhapoo vadai)


Yeah it tastes wonderful and just sooo special from the usual vadas.

My mom taught me this recipe and she is an expert in doing it.

Ingredients:

kadalaparappu(chick peas): 1 cup (soaked)
Onions(finely chopped): 1 cup
Pudina(mint leaves)(finely chopped):2 tsps
coriander(chopped):2 tsps
Green chillies(chopped):2 tsps
Banana flower: 1 no.
Turmeric powder:1 pinch
Salt:as required
Oil: to deep fry

Method:
Soak chick peas in water for 4-5 hrs.
Also remove the banana florets from the flower.Remove the black stamen from the florets.Each floret has 1 black stamen.Very small florets can be used as it is.
Chop the florets.Steam them for 5-10 mins.
Grind the chick peas.Mix all the other ingredients and fry the vadas in oil till golden brown.
Tip: Do not grind chick peas very smoothly.Let it be a little coarse.Teh you will get very crisp vadas and tastes really good.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Tofu chapathis/rotis

Tofu is really a very good protein source and healthier than our very own panneer.

Ingredients:
Tofu:200 gms(very soft type)
Wheat flour:5 cups
Zeera/cumin seeds:2 tsp
salt: to taste
Chilli powder:1 tsp
Green chillies (finely chopped):3-4
Pickle masala(masala in any pickle): 1 tsp
Asafoetida:1/2 tsp
Coriander: 4-5 tsp
Oil: 2tbsp

Method:
Add the ingredients, mix well and knead into a soft dough.
Make chapathis and enjoy.
Please post your comments.

Thanks,
Priya

Masala idli





I prepared this recipe this week.Found it really interesting and different hence posting the recipe.I havent clicked the pics of idli.But will post them in 2-3 days after preparing them again.My mom's recipe.......

Ingredients for making the idli batter:
Urad dhall:2 cups
Rice :4 cups
Salt :as needed
Baking soda:a pinch or 1/4 tsp

Method for making the idli batter:
Soak rice and urad dhall for minimum 4 hrs.Grind both separately and mix them.
Add salt,baking soda,water and mix thoroughly.Allow the batter to ferment for 6hrs or even more till the batter rises.Usually it takes more time to ferment in winter season than summer.

Ingredients for masala:
Carrot grated:1 cup
Ginger(finely chopped):1 tsp
Mustard: 1 tsp
Urad dhall: 1 tsp
Oil: 1 tsp
Curry Leaves(finely chopped): 5-6
Coriander(finely chopped): 3-4 tsp
half cooked avarekaalu/hyacinth beans: 1 cup(soaked and coat removed)
Asafoetida: 1/4 tsp
Coconut: 1/2 cup

Fry curry leaves,asafoetida, urad dhall,mustard,ginger in oil.
Add these,carrot ,avarekaalu,coriander,coconut and steam the idlis.

Enjoy the masala idlis with the simple coconut chutney....
Post your comments..

Posted the photos...
Thanks,
Priya