Vegetarian cooking blog

Thursday 30 July 2020


This is an epic post because I love Blueberries(any berry for that matter) and I  have perfected this Blueberry cheesecake finally. And for a recipe to feature on my blog, I should have perfected it before I put it out before you, and that is when I have tried it out 3 times without any mishaps. 
Over the years I have tried this recipe quite many times and it would taste fine but,  consistency wise there would be some glitch or the other. Also in India, we don't get fresh Blueberries very often, and even if we do they are expensive. So in this recipe, I have used dried Blueberries that are available in all departmental stores. I wanted to give you a recipe in which things are accessible. The Cream Cheese I have used here is also available at all outlets with a Chiller isle. The recommended one is Philadelphia Cream cheese but I have not used that, just to try if other brands work fine, and yes they do. 
This Cheesecake turning out so well is a dream come true for me, as its always been my wish to make one. Since I love berries I have loaded my Cheesecake with a lot of them, one can reduce the quantity too if they desire. 
This recipe is a no-mess, one-bowl recipe so not much of clean up is required. It is light and creamy with a blueberry topping. The thing about them being baked is that they hold well at room temperature, but since I am using a blueberry topping I had to refrigerate for 2 hours. The topping is just an option and is not at all mandatory.
I have simplified the recipe quite a bit. In this recipe, I'm giving stepwise instructions directly.

while you are here please try my other recipes like Apple Crumble, 
Pineapple Jam tarts, Nutella fudge brownies, Berry Smoothie Icecream, and more...

Here is the recipe of Blueberry Cheesecake for you-

     PREP TIME: 20 Mins                                          COOK TIME: 40 Mins
     TOTAL TIME:60Mins                                           COURSE:  DESSERT
     CUISINE:  WORLD FOOD                                  SERVINGS: 6
     AUTHOR: Rajni Ram

Ingredients for Base:

 Marie Biscuit 1 sheet(20 nos)
Unsalted butter 100 gm
Sugar 2 tbsp(powdered or fine sugar)

Ingredients for Filling:

Creamcheese 320 gm softened(keep out of the refrigerator for 1 hour)
Plain flour/Maida 1 tbsp
Sourcream/Curd 1/3 cup
White Sugar 1/2 cup 
Vanilla extract 1.5 tsp
Zest of Lemon- Grate the rind of one whole lemon
Eggs 2
Blueberries(dried) 250 gm (soak in warm water for 30 mins and drain the water)
Icing Sugar for dusting(optional) (refer note2)

* Reserve some blueberries(unsoaked) for later.

Ingredients for Blueberry topping/Sauce:

Blueberries(dried) 1 cup (soaked for 30 mins in warm water and drain water)
Sugar1/4 cup
Cornflour 1 tbsp
Lemon Juice 1 tbsp
Butter 1 tbsp
Blueberry preserve 3/4 of a 240 gm bottle(around 180 gm) 

Directions for Sauce:
Place the Blueberries and remaining ingredients(except the preserve) in a saucepan and cook over medium flame. Bring them to a simmer and cook until few of the blueberries burst, around 3 minutes. Keep stirring. Now add the preserve ad stir again. The sauce will come together and become jammy. Remove from flame and cool completely.

Directions for Base:
1.Grease or spray a round baking tray/mould with oil and line with parchment paper/butter paper. Place the biscuits in a blender and powder them. Add the butter and sugar to the powdered biscuits and blitz again. It should look like wet sand.

2. Put this mixture into the baking mould and using something flat press it down into the base and also rise in the sides, as this is going to hold the filling and topping, it needs some height. See pictures for reference.

Directions for filling:

1. Firstly preheat the oven to 160 C or 320F. Now start making the filling. Beat Creamcheese(just a spatula will do, stand mixer or electric beater not required, remember I said it a one-bowl recipe😉) until smooth, it need not become fluffy. Now add the flour and beat again until just combined.

2. Add sour cream/curd, sugar, vanilla and the lemon zest and beat until combined. Add the eggs one by one beating in between, until just combined. Do not overbeat.

3. Now ensure you have drained all water from the soaked blueberries and add the berries to the cream cheese batter and fold gently. Now pour this batter into the prepared base and top with the reserved unsoaked blueberries.

4. Bake for 40 minutes at 180 C or until the cheesecake is set, but the middle of the cake should wobble when you shake it and when you stick in a toothpick it should come out clean. There can be little cracks on the cake, so don't worry.
Baked Cake

5. Cool the cake completely and spread the Blueberry sauce over it( the sauce might have thickened, just microwave it for 20 seconds and it will be spreadable again). Refrigerate for 2 hours and its ready. Enjoy the Berrilicious flavour. Bon Appetit.


1. If using Fresh Blueberries use 1/2 cup sugar for the filling and the entire bottle of the preserve.
2. Topping the cake with Blueberry sauce is optional. If not topping it dust icing sugar over the cake before storing.
3. Try using a spatula for beating as we don't want the batter to air up and rise. If the batter becomes fluffy, the cake will rise while baking and then go limp on removing it from the oven.
4. If topping the cake with sauce, don't forget to refrigerate it, only then the topping will set, otherwise when you cut the cake it will drop everywhere.

If you tried this recipe and liked it please comment below. I would love to hear from you. If you have a query about the recipe email us and ill respond as soon as I can.
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Wednesday 29 July 2020


I have realized that people either like Karela/Pavakkai/Bittergourd or don't like it at all. There is no in-between here. Those who like it, love it. So here I bring to you an everyday subzi that is made in most houses, does that sound boring? Then read ahead and you will realize that I'm not going to stuff it with the regular Amchur powder, coriander, and red chilli powders. Ok, I'm using Coriander seeds and I shall make the stuffing from scratch, which makes it aromatic, and yes my favourite word flavourful.

Actually, before deciding to blog this recipe I was in two minds as to whether you all will be interested in a bitter gourd recipe and then thought even if half my Karela eating followers try the dish, it would be worth it. In this recipe, I slow-roast coriander seeds and lentils and spices along with tamarind to form a powder and fill the karelas with it. After stuffing them saute over a low fire until done and they get a beautiful glaze on them.

I am using the small Bitter gourds as then the filling is intact. But believe me, if you like this dish you are going to make it with the big ones too, and  I will tell you how to by the end of the recipe.

While you are here please take a look at my other recipes like Drumstick Curry, Brinjal Pepper fry, Mushroom Do Pyaza, Palak Paneer, Gutti Vankaya Kura and more.

Here is the recipe of stuffed karela/Bitter gourd for you--


      PREP TIME: 15 Mins                                            COOK TIME: 20 Mins
     TOTAL TIME: 35Mins                                           COURSE:  MAIN
     CUISINE:  NORTH INDIAN                                 SERVINGS: 4
     AUTHOR: Rajni Ram


Small Bitter gourd 20 pcs
Coriander seeds 2 tbsp
Urad dal 1 tbsp
Chana dal 1/2 tbsp
Tamarind gooseberry size ball
Dry red chillies( whole) 5
Jaggery 1 tsp(optional)
Asafoetida 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Salt as per taste
Oil for sauteeing

Slit the Bitter gourd midway to form a +. Now put the slit Bitter gourds in hot water, add some salt and keep covered for 5 minutes. After 5 mins drain the water and cool the bitter gourds. Now in a pan add 1 tsp oil and heat. First, add the coriander seeds and fry for half a minute. Now add both the dals and fry until golden brown. Add the dry red chillies and fry until crisp, add tamarind and fry for 30 seconds and put off the flame( roasting of all these ingredients should be done only on low flame and take care not to burn them). Cool the roasted spices and grind to an almost fine powder. Add the turmeric powder, salt and jaggery(if using) and give another spin in the blender. Now fill this mixture in all the Karelas and set aside( if the filling is left, reserve it to add in the end for that lovely glaze, or better make a little extra of this powder). Heat oil in a Karahi/ pan, pour 1 tbsp oil and heat. Now slowly add the stuffed Karelas to the Karahi one by one and start sauteeing over a low flame. Cover for 2 minutes and stir again. Cover the karahi, let it cook for 2 minutes, then again open and stir. Repeat this until Karela are cooked well but not limp. They should retain shape. Finally, add the reserved stuffing to the Cooked Karelas and cover and cook for a minute on low flame. Put off the stove and its ready to serve.

Serving Suggestions: Serve hot with Rotis, Plain Parathas, Dal Chawal, Kadi Chawal and more...

1. Assemble all ingredients. Slit the Karela/Bitterourd as shown in the picture, put in salted hot water and keep covered for 5 minutes. Drain the water and cool the bitter gourds.

2. In a pan add 1 tsp oil and on slow flame roast coriander seeds until you get a nice aroma or until it turns light brown. Now add the Urad dal and chana dal and roast until they turn light brown. Follow up with dry red chillies and roast until crisp. Finally, add the tamarind and fry for 30 seconds. Cool. Grind to almost fine powder, add turmeric powder, salt and jaggery if using) and give it a final spin in the blender.

3. Fill this stuffing(masala) into the bitter gourds. Reserve some stuffing. 

4. Now in a Karahi take 1 tbsp oil and heat. Now drop the bitter gourds one by one into the oil and fry on a low flame. Keep covered to 2 minutes, open, give a stir and cover and cook again. Repeat this process until all the Karelas are cooked, but not limp and mushy. 

5. Finally, add the reserved stuffing powder to the Karelas, stir and cook covered for a minute or two on low flame, to get that nice brown glaze.

1. To make the same recipe with the big ones, cut them in halves and then slit then midway and fill. In this procedure, some stuffing will fall into the oil, but it is fine as long as you keep stirring it every now and then and don't allow it to burn.
2. The dish will taste good even without adding jaggery, so you can skip it entirely.
3. Once you grind the spices you can always check the taste and balance it, by adding red chilli powder or salt.

 If you tried this recipe and liked it please comment below. I would love to hear from you.
In case you wish to receive recipes as an email, please leave your id on the homepage near the mail icon. Whenever Rajjo's Kitchen has a new post the recipe will be mailed to you. 



Tuesday 28 July 2020


Mushroom Do Pyaza is a simple recipe made predominantly of Mushrooms and onions. At our home, I make it frequently to go with Rotis or pulav. Well, this dish is usually semi-dry but I prefer it with a little gravy, so you will find that my recipe is a little different from the other Mushroom Do Pyaz recipes. That said, it still is a very simple one. I have just included 2 ingredients that make it a little creamy.
Mushrooms by nature are a little bland so making this dish with a little gravy gives some texture and flavour to the dish. Even though the Mushrooms are bland they blend really well in Indian gravies and spices. Especially in this recipe of Mushroom Do Pyaza, you will see how surprisingly yummy they can be.
This recipe gets its name "Do Pyaza" from a cooking technique that requires adding Onion in two different stages. 
While you are here please check out my other recipes like Mixed Vegetable Curry

         PREP TIME: 15                                              COOK TIME: 15 Mins
      TOTAL TIME: 30 Mins                                     COURSE:  MAIN
     CUISINE: NORTH INDIAN                                SERVINGS: 6
     AUTHOR: Rajni Ram


Mushrooms 200 gm chopped in 4 lengthwise
Capsicum 1 medium chopped
Onion 2 medium chopped into petals
Besan/gram flour 2 tbsp
Tomato puree 1/2 cup
Cream 2 tsp
Curd 1/2 cup
Cumin seeds 1 tsp
Coriander powder 2 tsp
fennel powder 1 tsp
Red chilli powder 1 tsp (1/2 tsp if sensitive to spice)
salt as required
turmeric powder 1/2 tsp

Dry roast the gram flour until light brown and a nice aroma emanates. Cool the roasted flour. Now in the blender put in half the amount of chopped onions and the roasted gram flour and blend to a smooth paste. Now add the tomato puree to this onion- gram flour paste and blend again. Add the curd to the paste and blend it again. So now you will have a smooth puree of onion, roasted gram flour, tomato puree, and curd. Keep this aside and heat oil in a Karahi. When the oil is hot drop in the onion petals and saute them until light brown. Now add the Capsicum cubes and continue to saute for 1 to 2 minutes until a light brown tint appears. Remove them on to a plate. Now to the same kadai add the mushrooms and saute on high flame, until all the moisture escapes and it becomes dry. (refer picture).  Remember to saute all these vegetables over a high flame or else they will start releasing moisture. Transfer the sauteed vegetables to a separate plate/vessel. Now in the same Kadai pour some more oil and heat it. Put in the cumin seeds and as they splutter add in the puree from the blender jar and stir continuously for a minute so that it doesn't stick to the pan/karahi. Now add the coriander powder, followed by red chilli powder and turmeric powder and salt, and stir nicely. Let it cook for 2 minutes on medium flame. Now add the sauteed vegetables to the sauce and cook for 2 minutes. Add the cream and stir constantly for 30 seconds so that it doesn't split. Now put off the flame and add Garam Masala powder if you prefer. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and its ready to relish. Happy cooking, Enjoy, and Bon Appetit.


1. Assemble all the ingredients. Chop the mushrooms in 4, Chop the opinion into petals, and the capsicum to cubes. Dry roast the gram flour, puree the tomatoes.

In addition to the above vegetables, Red Bell peppers/ capsicum and green peas can also be added. However, these are optional and hence have not been mentioned in ingredients.

2. In a blender put in half the amount of chopped onions and the roasted gram flour and blend to a paste. Add the tomato puree and blend again. Now add the cuts and blend once again. You should have a smooth puree of all the above ingredients now. Set it aside.

3. In a pan/Karahi heat, some oil and saute the onion for 1 minute or until it gets a light brown colour, on high flame. Add the Capsicum and continue to saute until they get a light brown tint on them. Remove them on to a plate. Now to the same kadai add the mushrooms and saute on high flame, until all the moisture escapes and it becomes dry. (refer picture).

 Sauteed vegetables

4. In the same Pan/karahi Take some more oil and heat. Add the cumin seeds and when they splutter pour the prepared paste into it and stir continuously for a minute. 

5. Add the salt, coriander powder, fennel powder, red chilli powder, and turmeric powder, stir and cook for 2 minutes on medium flame. Add little water if the sauce is too thick. Now add the sauteed vegetables and cook for another 2 minutes. If adding green peas, cook them and add at this stage.

6. Finally, add the cream and stir nicely and put off the flame. Add garam masala powder. Garnish with coriander leaves and the Mushroom Do Pyaza is ready to serve.

1. Always saute vegetables such as onions, capsicum, mushroom, etc on high flame or they release a lot of moisture. Mushrooms should be added at the end as they don't withstand too much heat and become limp quickly.
2. You can add more cream if you prefer.
3. You can add or skip Garam masala powder if you prefer. 

This is my meal with Mushroom Do Pyaza. I served it with Warqi Parathas and Mango Chundo. 

  If you tried this recipe and liked it please comment below. I would love to hear from you.
In case you wish to receive recipes as an email, please leave your id on the homepage near the mail icon. Whenever Rajjo's Kitchen has a new post the recipe will be mailed to you. 

Monday 27 July 2020


Sugiyan or Sukhiyan as it is called is a traditional snack in Kerala and Tamilnadu. It is also made in Andhra Pradesh and is called Boorelu. This snack is like a sweet version of the Aloo Bonda where the Aloo is replaced with a sweet Chana dal or Moong dal and Jaggery filling and instead of Besan Urad dal and rice flour are used as a batter to cover the filling(Poornam). Coconut is also added to the filling that enhances the taste. This is also a snack that people make for festivals. As the festival time is nearing blogging this recipe may be helpful. I usually make it around Navarathri and Diwali to serve it to guests who visit home.
As I  had mentioned that the poornam (filling) is made with Moong dal too, but I personally feel the chana dal filling is tastier. Some also use whole moong(payaru) to make the filling.
 I use this filling of Sugiyan to make Puran Poli(Boli/Bobbatlu/Hoolige) also. So what I usually do is make them both simultaneously. I use wheat flour majorly with a hint of maida to make Puran Poli, the Sugiyan is had the same day as it doesn't taste fresh or hold good the next day, it is like an instant snack, whereas Puran Poli can be consumed with 2-3 days if stored properly.
One needs to grind the batter carefully and the rest of the recipe is quite easy. In this recipe, I will also show you an easy way to make the filling.

While you are here check out my other dessert recipes like Pineapple Rabdi,
 Carrot Kheer, Chakkara Pongal, Atte Ka Sheera, Akkara vadisal, and more. 

Here is the recipe of Sugiyan for you--
 PREP TIME: 20 Mins(1 hr soak)                         COOK TIME: 40 Mins
TOTAL TIME: 60 Mins                                          COURSE:  SNACK
CUISINE: SOUTH INDIAN                                   SERVINGS: 6
                                                                              AUTHOR: Rajni Ram

Urad dal 1 cup soaked for 1-hour 
Chana dal 1 cup roasted to light brown
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Rice flour 2 tbsp
Jaggery 1 cup powdered
Coconut grated 1/2 cup
Cardamom powder 1 tsp
Oil for frying

Directions: for the filling:
 Dry roast the Chana dal to a light brown, you will get a nice aroma of the dal. Switch off the flame, remove and cook in a pressure cooker with 1/2 tsp turmeric powder and adequate water for 2-3 whistles(not more), as we want the dal to be rightly cooked, not mushy. Once the dal is cooked and the pressure in the cooker has subsided, remove the dal and put it in a strainer for all the water to drain off for about 5 minutes. Now put the dal into the dry grinding unit of the processor and blitz. Open stir the contents well and blitz again to a fine powder. After grinding it will resemble wet sand. Now in a Karahi put in the jaggery and the ground dal, followed by grated coconut( add no water) and keep stirring, in low flame. The jaggery will start melting and within 5 minutes of stirring the filling will become well combined. Even if it seems a little dry, don't be tempted to add water. The jaggery will be enough to bind it. Add the Cardamom powder and keep stirring and when it forms a lump, put off the flame and let it cool. Once the filling has cooled, make small balls of them and keep aside.   

Directions for the outer crust:

Soak the Urad dal for 1 hour and grind. Don't allow it to soak for a long time, as then it soaks up a lot of oil while frying. The dal has to be ground to a smooth and thick batter, with water as required. The batter should stick to the filling and not roll off it, that should be the consistency. A runny or flowy batter will not stick to the filling. After grinding transfer to a dish, add 2 tablespoons of rice flour and 1/2 tsp salt. Now add little water if required as the rice flour would have absorbed all moisture from the urad dal paste. 

Directions to make Sugiyan:
Heat oil for frying to medium-high. Now take one ball at a time, roll it in the batter, or smear the batter all over the filling, it should be a thick coating or it will split in the oil and, drop them gently into the oil. Fry 4-5 of them at a time. Remove when golden brown in colour. Drain them on an absorbent paper. Repeat for the entire lot of filling. The delicious Sugiyan is ready. Serve with tea or make it as Prasad(offering) for Puja and enjoy it. Bon Appetit.


1. Assemble all ingredients. Soak the dal for an hour. Dry roast the Chana dal and pressure cook for 2 -3 whistles and no more.

2. For the Outer crust(cover)- Grind the soaked Urad dal by adding little water to a smooth but thick paste(idli batter consistency or a little thicker also is fine). Stir in 1.5 to 2 tablespoons of rice flour. If the batter gets too thick, add a little amount of water to get it back to the right consistency, given above. ( I forgot to take a picture of adding Rice flour, so please keep in mind and ad it).

3. For filling- Dry roast the Chana dal until light brown in colour, you will get a nice sweet aroma when you are getting to that stage. Pour required water and add turmeric powder and pressure cook it for 2-3 whistles, and not more. Once the pressure reduces, take the dal and drain it completely of all the water and allow it to cool for 5 minutes.

4. Now put the warm Dal into the dry grinding jar and blend to a powdery texture, without any water. Give it a mix and spin again, the mixture should be fine and should resemble wet sand.

5. Put this ground Dal mixture in a Kadai and add the jaggery and grated coconut to it. Switch on the flame on low and start stirring this mixture. Do not add any water, the jaggery will start melting in the heat and help in combining. Add the cardamom and keep stirring until the mixture comes together and forms a lump. Put off the flame and cool the mixture.

6. To make the Sugiyan-  Heat oil in a karahi for frying. Heat should be medium-high. Now make lemon sized(or a little bigger too is ok) balls of the filling and keep it aside. Check if the oil is hot by dropping little of the batter into it. If it sizzles and rises immediately, it is ready for frying.

7. Now take the Urad dal - Rice flour batter and dunk each ball into it gently, use your hands to smear the batter on the filling if required ad cover the ball. Gently drop it into the oil and fry to a golden brown colour. 4-5 Sugiyans can be fried at a time. Drain them on absorbent paper. Repeat for the entire filling and enjoy them hot.

1. I recommend not soaking the Urad dal for more than an hour as it soaks in lot of oil while frying.
2. The jaggery can be reduced to 3/4 cup depending on how sweet it is.
3. I forgot to take a picture of adding the rice flour, so don't forget to add it if following only the pictures.

If you tried this recipe and liked it please comment/ tag Rajjo's kitchen on Facebook and Instagram and please follow us on my blog

If you wish to receive the recipes as an email please leave your id on the homepage near the mail icon. Whenever Rajjo's Kitchen has a new post it will be mailed to you.

Sunday 26 July 2020


  Palak Paneer is a dish I have relished since childhood, as I love Palak and Paneer both. This dish is popular in North India and is one of the most popular Paneer dishes. It is usually served with Roti, Parathas, and other Indian Bread. It goes really well with Plain Rice, Jeera rice and Pulav too. In this dish, the Palak is pureed and made into a thick gravy with spices and the Paneer pieces are cooked in it. This dish is a great way to add Palak to your diet.
Spinach/Palak is loaded with Iron and fibre and the Paneer is rich in proteins and so this makes it a healthy recipe.
Well, there are loads of Palak Paneer recipes that recommend using cashewnuts or cream for a thicker or creamier gravy, I feel that this makes the dish heavy. Palak by itself when pureed after blanching has volume, plus the onions and tomatoes sauteed and ground also adds body to the dish, so adding cashew paste or cream is not absolutely necessary, though if one likes the taste of it, then no harm in adding them too. That said it does not make much of a difference to the dish. I usually use the cream only as a garnish, that too around 1 tsp.  
There are many other Palak recipes from different cuisines and I will try and bring them to you over a period of time. While you are here please go through my recipes of other Subjis like  Drumstick curry, Brinjal pepper masala, Kadai Paneer, Mixed vegetable curryGutti vankaya Kura, Matar PaneerPaneer palak steamed Koftas, Arbi masala and Lauki Kaddu ke Kofthey.  
Please do try out my Dal recipes like Rajma masala, Dal Makhni, Choley, Pakodewali Dal and Hari Moong ki dal.

Here is the recipe of Palak paneer for you---

     PREP TIME: 15 Mins                                            COOK TIME: 25 Mins
     TOTAL TIME: 40Mins                                           COURSE:  MAIN
     CUISINE:  NORTH INDIAN                                  SERVINGS: 4
     AUTHOR: Rajni Ram

Palak 1 bunch
Paneer 200 gm
Onion 1 large or 2 small
Green chillies 2
Tomato 2 large to medium size
Ginger- garlic paste 1 tsp
Cloves 2
Cumin seeds 1 tsp
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Salt as required
Garam masala powder 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder 2 tsp
Fennel Powder 1 tsp
red chilli powder 1 ts
Oil for sauteeing

Chop the Palak roughly and blanch them, I usually put them in the microwave for 2 mins. Alternately just put them in boiling water for 5 minutes. Drain the water and pour cold water over the Palak, this helps in keeping the green colour intact. Puree the Palak and keep ready.
Now in a karahi pour some oil and heat. Add 2 cloves followed by Cumin seeds and drop in the chopped onions. Saute for a minute, add the green chillies and continue to saute for 30 seconds, finally add the tomatoes and cook until the tomatoes turn mushy. Cool them. Now blend the onion-tomato mixture to a puree. In the same karahi take another 2 tsp of oil and heat.  Add the cumin seeds followed by turmeric powder and pour the onion-tomato mixture. Fry it nicely in the oil,  now add the Palak puree and stir. Cook for about 3 minutes on medium flame and add salt, followed by coriander powder, red chilli powder, fennel powder and continue to cook. Be careful as the palak splutters a lot while cooking, you can keep the karahi partially covered.  After about 3-4 minutes of cooking the Palak and tomato mixture will come together, at that stage add the cubed paneer and cook for another 2 minutes on medium flame so that the Paneer absorbs the masala. The delicious Palak Paneer is ready to serve.

Serving suggestions: with Rotis, Parathas, Kulcha, with rice varieties like Jeera rice, Mayar Pulav, 
Flavoured rice, vegetable pilaf etc;

1. Assemble all ingredients. Blanch the Palak, cube the Paneer, chop onion and tomatoes.

2. Puree the Palak and set aside. In a karahi take oil and heat. Put in the cloves and cumin seeds, and as the cumin splutters add turmeric powder followed by onions and sauté for a minute. Add the green chillies and sauté for 30 seconds and now add the tomatoes and sauté until mushy. Cool and grind to a purée, along with 1 tsp ginger garlic paste.

3. In the same karahi take 2 tsp oil and heat. Now add the cumin seeds and pour in the tomato and onion paste and fry nicely in the oil. 

4. Now pour the Palak purée and stir nicely. Add the salt, red chilli powder, coriander powder, fennel powder and stir. Cook on medium flame until combined, approximately 4 minutes.

5. Now add the cubed Paneer pieces to the gravy and cook covered for 2 minutes. Finally, add garam masala powder and turn off the flame. The delicious Palak Paneer is ready.

1. Blanching ( putting the Palak in hot water) is a critical step followed by dipping it in cold water.
2. I don’t usually fry the paneer before adding it to a subji or gravy unless the recipe demands it. While you are readying the gravy just put the cubed paneer in fresh water until it’s time to put it in the gravy. It will absorb the flavours better.
3. Don’t overcook the Palak, it loses its colour and taste.

If you tried this recipe and liked it please comment below. I would love to hear from you.
In case you wish to receive recipes as email, please leave your id in the homepage near the mail icon. Whenever Rajjo's Kitchen has a new post the recipe will be mailed to you. Your privacy is important to us and we will not share your id with anyone.

Saturday 25 July 2020


Kothimbir Vadi is a savory Maharashtrian snack. It is made of Fresh coriander leaves and Besan/gram flour. Coriander as I have mentioned in my previous posts is my favourite herb. So when there is a recipe predominantly with coriander leaves how could I let it go and hence the post.
This recipe is very simple, flavourful( this word is used many times across this blog if you notice, as I believe the flavour is a very important entity to any food.) and healthy. This snack has a strong resemblance to Gujarath's Muthias( will blog this soon).

Traditionally this snack is deep-fried, but now one can shallow fry or saute in a small amount of oil too. This dish is cooked twice as it is steamed first and then shallow fried. It is soft and moist when steamed and develops a nice crunch when fried. It goes very well with the sweet chutney and garlic chutney and makes for a great tea time snack. Made to bite-size pieces can be served as a starter in get-togethers. I have really wanted to try this recipe for a long while and I'm happy I did. Everyone at home was pleased by this dish😊.

While you are here please view other recipes by Rajjos kitchen like 
Moong dal Kachoris, and more...

here is the recipe of Kothimbir Vadi for you--

PREP TIME: 15 Mins                                            COOK TIME: 25 Mins
TOTAL TIME: 40 Mins                                          COURSE:  SNACK
CUISINE: MAHARASHTRIAN                             SERVINGS: 4
                                                                              AUTHOR: Rajni Ram


Fresh Coriander finely chopped 2 cups
Besan/Gram flour 1 cup
Green chillies 2-3
Ginger 1 inch piece
Salt as per taste
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Red Chilli powder 1 tsp( or as per taste)
Jaggery 1 tsp
Tamarind pulp 1 tsp
Curd 1/2 cup
Water as required
cooking soda 1/2 tsp
Mustard seeds 1 tsp
Jeera/cumin seeds 1tsp
Asafoetida 1 tsp
Grated coconut 1 tbsp
sesame seeds(white) 1 tsp

Get the steamer/ pressure cooker ready for steaming. By the time the batter gets ready, the water would have heated and the batter can be steamed immediately, after mixing.
Make a coarse paste of green chillies, ginger, and garlic(if using).In a dish take the Gram flour/besan, add the ginger-green chilli paste, followed by salt, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, jaggery, tamarind pulp. Mix nicely. Now add the curd and stir with a spatula. It will be a semi-wet mixture. Add in the chopped coriander leaves followed by a little water( around 1/2 cup) and make a thick batter. The batter should not be runny, so add water little at a time. Grease a plate or flat vessel with oil and before pouring the batter into the greased plate/ vessel add the cooking soda and stir nicely so that the soda combines well with the batter. Immediately pour the batter into the greased plates, tap the plate lightly, so that the batter settles evenly and place it into the steamer. Steam for 15 minutes. After steaming, remove and cool completely. Cut them into squared or diamonds and keep aside. Heat sufficient oil in a flat pan and put in the tempering of mustard and cumin seeds. As they splutter, add asafoetida and place the cut vadi pieces and fry until they turn brown. Keep turning sides for equal cooking. Remove when all sides are lightly brown and crisp. In the same pan drop the grated coconut and seame and roast until they turn light brown. Now scatter this on the fried Kothimbir Vadi for nice flavour.  Kothimbir Vadi is ready to serve with garam chai...Enjoy. Bon Appetit.

1. Assemble all ingredients. Wash the coriander leaves well and drain all moisture, chop them finely.

2.  Pour water into a steamer and get it going, so that by the time the batter is ready the steamer is ready. Make a coarse paste of the chilli and ginger(and garlic too if using) and keep ready.

3. Now in a dish take the besan and add the green chilli and ginger paste, salt, followed by turmeric powder, red chilli powder, jaggery, tamarind pulp. Add the curd and mix well with a spatula. It should be a semi-wet mixture.

4. Now put in the chopped coriander and mix well. Add water little at a time to make a smooth, yet thick batter. The batter should not be runny. Grease a plate or a flat dish with oil.

5. Now just before pouring the batter into the plate, add the cooking soda and mix well. Pour the batter into the greased plate and set it in the steamer for 15 minutes.

6. After steaming, remove the plate and cool completely. Cut into squares or diamonds and set aside. In a flat pan, pour sufficient oil for shallow frying. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds and asafoetida and place the cut Vadi pieces into the oil. Fry each side until light brown and crisp. Remove from pan. Repeat for all the pieces. 

7. Now in the same pan put in the grated coconut and Sesame seeds and saute until light brown. Put this on tempering on the vadi for a nice flavour. The Kothimbir Vadi is ready.

1. The ratio of coriander leaf to Besan is 2:1, stick to that. More quantity scale up the measures in the same proportion.
2. Wash and drain the coriander leaves well before chopping.
3. I have not used garlic, but it can be added.
4. If you like the Vadis deep-fried, go ahead and fry them. 

If you tried this recipe and liked it please comment below. I would love to hear from you.

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Friday 24 July 2020


Kuzhi Paniyarams are basically Lentil and rice batter dumplings. The batter is fermented and then poured into a Paniyaram pan which gives them the shape. Most often in South Indian homes the Kuzhi Paniyaram or Kuzhi appam as we call it is made from the Idli batter itself. When the batter becomes a little sour it is made into Paniyaram. That is because the Idli/Dosa batter is made for a whole week as a quick breakfast or dinner option. So day 1 is Idli, day 2 Dosa and day 3 onwards its Paniyaram and dosa with the batter, as sour Idlis are not that great to taste. However, when I have guests over I prefer making the batter especially for this as it makes the crust crisp and enhances the taste of the Paniyaram to a different level and the texture on the inside of the Paniyaram is lovely.

There are many variations of the Paniyaram batter. It is usually made with Urad dal and rice, Raagi(Finger millet)flour, Jowar(Sorghum) flour, Bajra(Pearl millet) flour, etc can also be used in the batter. The proportions of the Dal and rice also vary from home to home. The Paniyaram batter is used as it is or sometimes, finely chopped Onion, grated Carrots, and other vegetables can also be added. 

I have stuffed the Paniyaram with a mashed potato spicy stuffing which tastes wonderful, I have also added finely chopped onions, green chillies, ginger and curry leaves to the batter. This combination of onion in the batter and the Potato stuffing within is a perfect one.
I personally don't like using the non-stick Paniyaram pan for this dish, as the traditional brass or iron ones give the Paniyaram its crispy exterior. If you have only the non-stick one with you, that's fine too. 
Kuzhi Paniyarams can be served as Breakfast, starters or even for dinner with any chutney. 

While you are here please check out other recipes of mine like  Dahi Pohe, Adai,

PREP TIME: 20 Mins(+4 hrs soak)                    COOK TIME: 40 Mins
TOTAL TIME: 60 Mins                                      COURSE:  SNACK/TIFFIN
CUISINE: SOUTH INDIAN                               SERVINGS: 4
                                                                              AUTHOR: Rajni Ram

Here is the recipe of Stuffed Kuzhi Paniyaram--

Ingredients for batter:
Urad dal/black gram(whole without skin) 1 cup
Idli Rice/Boiled rice 1.5 cup
Raw rice(any variety except Basmathi) 1.5 cup
Methi seeds/fenugreek seeds 1 tsp

Ingredients for stuffing:

Potatoes 4 medium(boiled)
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Red chilli powder 1 tsp
Mustard seeds/Rai 1 tsp
Cumin seeds/jeera 1 tsp
Asafoetida 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves a few (finely chopped)
Salt as per taste
oil for tempering and for greasing the Paniyaram pan.

Directions for Batter:
Soak the dal and both rice varieties along with a teaspoon of methi seeds in a huge vessel for 3-4 hours and grind to a smooth paste to a batter of medium consistency(should resemble Idli batter). Add salt, and leave to ferment for 6-8 hours for a perfect texture of the Paniyaram. While grinding add little water at a time, the batter should be a smooth one, but not runny.

Directions for Stuffing:
Boil the potatoes, peel the skin and mash them well. Now in a pan pour some oil and heat. Add the mustard seeds, as they crackle, add the Cumin followed by turmeric powder, red chilli powder, salt, asafoetida and curry leaves. Nicely fry the masala in the oil for 30 seconds and drop the mashed potato into the tempering and mix nicely, so that the tempering is evenly distributed. Cool the mixture.
After it ferments temper the batter with mustard seeds and asafoetida.

Directions for Paniyaram:
Chop Onions, green chillies, ginger and curry leaves finely and add them to the fermented batter and stir well.
Put the Paniyaram pan on the flame and let it heat up. Pour oil into the moulds(if using a traditional metal pan, only the first round will need 1 tsp oil per mould, rest of the batches will need only a few drops). Wait for 1/2 a minute, let the oil heat up, now reduce the flame and with a small round ladle pour 1 scoop of batter into each mould, now take the stuffing little at a time with a spoon and drop it in the centre of the batter. Now cover up the stuffing with  1/2 scoop of batter and increase heat. Drizzle little oil around the corners of each mould, reduce the flame and slowly loosen them from the sides. Now flip each Paniyaram and cook the other side. When done loosen it from the mould and remove it. The crispy and tasty Kuzhi Paniyarams are ready..serve them with Tomato Coconut chutney or Tomato onion chutney. Enjoy. Bon Appetit.

1. Soak the dal and rice along with 1 tsp methi seeds for 3 hours minimum and grind to a smooth paste of medium consistency(Idli batter consistency). Add the salt, mix and allow to ferment for 6 to 8 hours.

2. Preparation of stuffing--Boil Potatoes, peel and mash them. In a pan take 1 tbsp oil and heat. Now add the mustard, followed by cumin, turmeric powder, salt, red chilli powder, asafoetida and curry leaves. Fry the masala for 30 seconds and add the mashed potato to the tempering and mix well. The tempering should have coated the potatoes well. Check for salt and spice. The stuffing should be a little spicy.

3. To the fermented batter add finely chopped onions, ginger, green chillies and curry leaves and stir nicely. Temper the batter with mustard seeds, cumin seeds and asafoetida.

4. Now put the Paniyaram pan on the flame and heat. Pour 1 tsp oil in each mould. Once the oil is heated, using a small round ladle, pour 1 scoop of batter into each mould. Now with a spoon drop little of the stuffing in the centre of the batter, now pour more batter to cover the stuffing. Drizzle some oil in the corners and cook for 1/2 a minute. Now loosen the edges of the paniyaram using a fork/ spoon or thin metal wire to flip them around, cook them and remove them from the pan when done. For doneness when you stick the metal wire or toothpick in the centre of the paniyaram, it should come out clean. 
(I have included a short video so that you understand the process of cooking the Paniyaram in the pan.)

5. Repeat this process for the entire batter or how many ever you wish to serve, the remaining batter can be stored in the fridge and used to make uthappam.
The Paniyaram is ready to serve. It goes well with all chutneys or just by itself as it has a stuffing. It can be served with Sambar too.

How do make this recipe without a Paniyaram pan?
well, make a thicker batter, and also make small balls of the stuffing. Now take the stuffing and drop it in the batter, use your hands to coat the stuffing with batter and deep fry them in a Kadai of oil.

1. As the recipe involves soaking and fermentation, plan your time. In winters give more time for fermentation.
2. The onion, green chillies, ginger and curry leaves can also be sauteed in oil and added to the batter.
3. If using a nonstick paniyaram pan, I recommend drizzling it with some oil for a crunchy exterior. 
4. Only small amounts of the stuffing as to put in the center of the batter, not too much of it. 

If you tried this recipe and liked it please comment below. I would love to hear from you.



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