July 30, 2010

Avalose Podi & Dates Avalose Unda ~ Traditional Kerala Snack

As with many Kerala specials, I was introduced to this sweet/snack by our neighbour V aunty. I have no clue what the name 'Avalose' implies. Because it doesn't indicate any of the ingredients used or the taste of it. If any of you have any idea of it do share it with me. Whatever be the name, the ingredients used easily available ones - Rice and Coconut and a little of jeera/cumin to flavor it up.  This was not part of the traditional cuisine (Kerala Iyer) followed at home. During my childhood days, when we were living as joint family, recipes outside our traditional cuisine were not very common. The occasional indulgence was chappati/ puri with Potato masala. As always, you will yearn for the goodies which is not available to you. Later on when we moved to our own house and with our constant pestering Amma got the recipe from V aunty. The recipe is very simple but the taste is simply out of the world. This is generally made in large quantities and is taken a snack. There are some flour mills, where they pound the rice and roast coconut and the rice flour together. 

You need

  • Rice flour - 1 cup, preferable home made
  • Fresh grated coconut- 1/2 cup
  • Cumin/Jeera - 1/2 tspn



Mix flour and coconut together and keep aside for an hour or so. While mixing this way, the flour will absorb the moisture from coconut and the flour will turn fluffy. The mixture will turn dry and it will ease in roasting.

Heat a kadai. Roast jeera ad then add the flour mix to it. Roast in medium heat, till it is light brown. I love the the aroma of roasted rice and coconut. If there is any lumps, try to break it with hand. Or to get a uniform texture, just pulse it in a mixer for few seconds.

While serving, take some avalose podi and mix in sugar and eat. Optionally, you can slice some banana pieces and mash it along and serve. Personally, I like to eat with sugar only.


 Note: Roasting should be done on medium heat so  as to bring out the flavors and for even roasting.

Avalose Unda
Traditionally, avalose unda is made with jaggery syrup mixed in and rolled into balls. Here I made the balls using dates. Finely chop the dates and pulse it in the mixer grinder. Mix in the avulose podi and make into balls. This makes a healthy snack with natural sweetener.

July 27, 2010

Chakka Pradhaman- Jackfruit & Jaggery cooked in coconut milk

I wrote in my last post, that I used up the chakka varatti. Yes, I prepared chakka pradhaman as neivedyam for the first friday of Aadi/Karkidakam. I usually make only neipayasam on all fridays. This time I made an exception. If you have chakkavaratti and coconut milk in hand, then making this pradhaman is a breeze. In Kerala, payasam is referred to as pradhaman when coconut milk is used. Now you might think, then how come palada pradhaman where milk is the ingredient. In earlier days, Ada pradhaman was made with jaggery and coconut milk. May be later on, with the availability of milk in abundance, some chef might have come up with this version.

As in all pradhamans, you need 3 sets of coconut milk- thick, medium thick and thin. The first extract from the coconut is the thick milk and subsequent extracts are the medium thick and thin, which are called as first, second and third milk in the order of extract. Coconuts used are not very matured ones. While selecting coconut for milk extraction, look for the coconuts which doesn't have dark brown shell. The ones which has shades of cream are good. Sorry, I forgot to click pics of the coconut. It would give a better idea.

For 1 cup of chakka varatti, you will need about 2 medium sized coconuts. Take the amount of chakka varatti and coconut milk given here as an indication. You go by your instinct and it cannot go wrong. Little less or more of any quantity may not effectthe end result in a big way. So here comes the recipe



You need

  •  Chakka varatti - 1 cup, packed
  • Three sets of milk extracted from 2 coconuts.
  • Chukku podi/Dry ginger powder - 1 tspn


Grate the coconut. Pulse the grated coconut with very little water. Add water just enough to ease the grinding. Squeeze the milk out with the help of a muslin cloth lined on a strainer. For the successive extract, you can add around half cup of water. Keep each set of milk separately.

1) Take a thick bottomed vessel or kadai. Dilute the chakka varatti in a cup of hot/warm water.

2) Then add the third milk. Bring to boil. Simmer for 10 minutes.

3) Add the second milk and simmer in medium low heat till it thickens. You can smel the flavor of jackfruit and jaggery as it thickens.

Once you add the first milk, no more cooking is done. So it will dilute the payasam. keep that in mind and let it thicken well. Finally add the first milk and remove from heat. Don't leave it on heat once you add the first milk, since there are chances of curdling. Add a teaspoon of dry ginger powder. Serve hot or cold.

You can add cardamom in place of chukku podi. Chukku/dry ginger will aid in digestion and probably thats the reason why it is added.

July 25, 2010

Chakka Varatti ~ Jackfruit Jam

Last few posts have been more of jack fruit and mango. I have some more posts lined up on jack fruit. During my childhood days, I have spent most of my summer vacation at my maternal home. Then, only my grand parents were there. Two months of vacation was full of fun. We spent the whole day playing in the back yard with children from the neighborhood. We were never bored. Those days, mangoes and jack fruit ruled the day.. in both raw and ripe forms. My grandma used to prepare chakka varatti from a minimum of 3 jack fruits in one go. Me and my sister used to help is separating the jack fruit bulbs. In the process, we would eat few also. Coming to the present, i have at most prepared chakka varatty from one jack fruit. Though the recipe is simple, the process is very laborious, it call for great shoulder strength for continuous stirring for a long time. Most of the times, I end making chakka poornam, which is used as filling for ela adai , since it calls for less work. When making the chakkavaratti with few jack fruit bulbs doesn't take much time. I'm sure my grandma  could never imagine making in such small quantity.  Here is how I make it

You need
  •  Jack fruit segments - 20 nos

  • Jaggery - 1 cup heaped

  • Ghee - a tablespoon


Chop the jack fruit into bite sized pieces. Cook in microwave or stop top till it changes it color. If cooking on stove top, sprinkle some water so that it doesn't stick to the pan.

Cool and puree the cooked fruit.

Take a thick bottomed kadai or pan. Mix the pureed fruit and jaggery. Cook till it is flaky like jam. Finally add a tablespoon of ghee. It will stay good for a year with out any refrigeration. The shelf life increases according to the consistency of the chakkavaratty. I haven't gone to that extent since I knew I would use it in a week.

July 22, 2010

Karuveppila Thokku /Curry Leaves Pickle

Curry leaves are good source of calcium and vitamins and minerals. Usually, curry leaves are used in the dishes for the flavor it imparts. And generally, these leaves are picked and kept side when served. When people discard/disown someone/something after using it for their benefit, its compared to leaving out the curry leaves while serving. (Kaaryam kazhinjal kariveppila pole)



I often make curry leaves powder and thogayal. Once I got to taste this thokku at my brother-in-laws place. My co-sister had got from her hometown. It was shop bought, probably packed by home based pickle makers. There was no ingredient list on it. Though, it was tad sweeter to my taste, I liked it. I tried to recreate it at home. It came out well. It goes well with dosa/adai and rice too. It keeps good for 2 weeks under refrigeration. I guess it will have shelf life of at least a week, even if kept outside.


You need

  • Curry leaves - 1 cup packed, separated from the stalk
  • Red chillies - 4 nos
  • Tamarind - gooseberry size
  • White Sesame seeds - 2 tspn
  • Hing - a small piece
  • Salt
  • Oil - 2 tblspn
  • Jaggery - a tiny piece



Wash and dry the curry leaves. Roast it in a kadai/Mw till crisp. Dry roast sesame seeds

Heat a teaspoon of oil. Drop the hing piece and when its fried, remove it. Then roast red chillies.
Powder curry leaves, sesame seeds, hing and salt.
When it is coarsely powdered, add the soaked tamarind and jaggery. Grind till smooth.
Use the tamarind soaked water to grind. You need to have a runny paste.

Heat 2 tablespoon of oil. Add the ground paste. Simmer till it thickens

Adjust the quantity of red chilly and jaggery to suit your taste palette.


July 20, 2010

Mango Murabba in Microwave

In my kitchen, raw mangoes is generally used to make instant pickles or in any kuzhambu/kootan. Blogging introduced chunda and henceforth I make at least two batches during the season.  This year two I made chunda. I just happened to find some raw mangoes in the market, even after the season has come to an end. I was searching for a raw mango jam recipe where in jaggery could be used in place of sugar. And I landed at Shubhada's place.

I decided to do it in microwave as is my practise whenever I make any jam. I find it easier than the stove top method.  It took only 7 minutes in MW and got around 200 gm of murabba with the following measurement. It stays good with out refrigeration. Since the quantity was less, it got over in a week.


  • Raw mango, grated - 1 cup
  • Jaggery powdered - 2 cup
  • Cardamom powder - 1/2 tspn


Mix the grated mango and jaggery in a microwave safe bowl. Micro high for 7 minutes, giving a mix at intervals of two minutes. Give a standing time of a minute or two and it will set.  Drop a spoonful and see if it falls in flakes and it is done.

Consistency is also important to determine the shelf life. While making in MW, you don't need to add extra water for cooking. This also helps in increasing the shelf life. It keeps good without refrigeration. I used mango:jaggery in the ratio of 1:2. Adjust the jaggery according to its sweetness and the sourness of the mango used. I wanted the tangy taste from mango also to be felt and not to be drowned in the sweetness of jaggery. I found using 2 cups was indeed very sweet.

 I am sending this to MEC:Favorites hosted by PJ, started by Srivalli. Also this joins the 365-days of microwave cooking project of Srivalli.

July 18, 2010

Chakka/Jackfruit Molagushyam and announcing the winner of the giveaway

My neighbor aunty gives me a share of jack fruit every time she cuts one at her home. They have a tree in their backyard. The thought of fresh, sweet jack fruit itself is very salviating, but it is also accompanied by the tiresome process of  separating the arils. But Aunty usually gives me the seeded arils and that leaves me with ready-to-use fruit bulbs. Most of the times, it will be just ripe and firm. Apart from making chakka curry, mostly I end up making this simple molagushyam. Though this doesn't take any ingredients other than salt, chilli powder and ground pepper to spice it up and light garnish of coconut oil and curry leaves, it tastes awesome. This can be prepared in 10 minutes.



You need

  • Ripe jackfruit arils chopped into bite size - 2 cups
  • Red chilli powder - 1/4 tspn
  • Ground pepper - 1/4 tspn
  • Salt to taste
  • Coconut oil - 1 tspn
  • Curry leaves - few sprigs


Take the chopped jackfruit pieces in a cooking bowl. Add the chilli powder, pepper powder and salt. Add a cup of water to it.  Cook on medium heat till the color of the JF changes to a darker shade of  yellow. Add more water as it cooks. The consistency is saucy. It thickens on cooling. So adjust accordingly. Serve as side dish for rice. It tastes good as a side for puri too. The sweetness of the fruit is balanced by the mild heat from chilli and pepper.




Now to the winner of the giveaway.  And the random number generated is

Vaishali is the lucky winner of $50 worth gift certificate sponsored by CSN stores. Vaishali, I have sent you a mail. And to the rest who took time to leave a comment there, sorry and better luck next time.
P.S: Thanks to all who appreciated the new look of my blog. The part of the appreciation should go to my dear friend Shoba, who was intrumental in getting this new look. She suggested the color theme and even picked the pictures for the header. She patiently gave feed back in the process of  updation and when she finally said its looking great and I know she means it.

July 15, 2010

Kara Sev for Indian Cooking Challenge

Srivalli challenged us this month to prepare kara sev, as part of the monthly Indian Cooking Challenge event. I missed the previous three challenges in a row. So this time, I prepared as soon as it was announced instead of  usual practise of making it nearing the post date. Kara sev was in my to-do list for a long time. I very much wanted to try it making with the ladle. I understand that there is a special ladle for that. I tried making with the perforated ladle. The holes are big enough in that. I found it very hard to press down the dough. It was falling perfect, about one inch in length. But it was time consuming. I guess it requires lot of practise. So eventually I went back to the murukku press and it was easy to press.

You need

  • Gram Flour (Besan)- 2 1/2 cups
  • Rice flour - 1 cup
  • Chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Black pepper coarsely powdered - 1 tsp
  • Ghee - 2 1/2 tsp
  • Cooking soda  - a pinch
  • Salt to taste.
  • Oil to deep fry.




1.Mix gram flour and rice flour well. Make a well in the centre.

2.Add chilli powder,pepper powder, salt,ghee and cooking soda.

3.Mix thoroughly with hands so that the flour mix resembles bread crumbs.  Divide the dough into 4 portions.

4.Take one portion of this mixture, sprinkle water, knead like Puri dough.

5.Heat oil in a kadai, Press dough using the sev maker. Drain when the sizzling sound round the sev subsides.

6. When it is cool, break them into one inch long strings and store in airtight container.



July 10, 2010

Peanut Podi & Pics of painting on pot by my niece

I love podis a lot. Growing up, podi meant kalathupodi, since it was the only one made at home. Later, staying in  a hostel for my graduation,  in Andhra Pradesh, I was introduced to variety of  podis by my roommates. Every year, Varalakshmi pooja was observed in our hostel. The pooja was set in our dining hall. So the food was served on the corridor outside and we were expected to eat on the verandha of the ground floor. Food was never allowed to be taken to the room unless someone falls sick and that too with the permission slip along with it. During this pooja, we somehow manage to take dinner to our room and enjoy eating with our room mates. In  our hostel, we were 8 in each room and seniors & juniors are mixed up. During those dinner sessions, one of us will mix rice with podi and ghee in a plate. It will be made into balls and passed to the rest of the roommates. I can go on and on about my hostel life. I surely miss those hostel days. 

Now coming to the recipe, I have written down this recipe from a Tamil Magazine.  Its very easy tasty and features in my kitchen very often.


  • Roasted groundnut - 2 cups
  • Chutney dal/Porikadala/Pottukadalai - 1 cup
  • White sesame seeds - 1/2 cup
  • Hing - a small piece
  • Khus Khus/Poppy seeds - 1 tblspn
  • Red chilli - 8-10 nos (Adjust according to your taste)
  • Salt
  • Oil  - a teaspoon


  1.  Dry roast sesame seeds and khus khus separately till they crackle.
  2. Heat a teaspoon of oil. Drop the hing piece. Remove it when it is roasted.
  3. Roast chilly in in the same oil.
  4. Powder the ingredients when its cool. Mix with hot rice and a dollop of ghee. I usually eat with sesame oil (Nallenai)

Here is the picture of a pot painted by my 16 year old neice, Soumya. She has not taken any formal training on this. I had posted some bookmarks done by her. She was overwhelmed reading the comments received for that. During my last trip there, I clicked few pictures of her paintings.

July 6, 2010

Eggless Apple Upside Down Cake with whole wheat flour

After my attempt at an upside down cake with pineapple, I wanted to try with apples. This time I didnot use any all purpose flour and did with whole wheat flour and arrow root flour. I usually stock arrow root flour or koova podi in Malayalam during the season(Nov-December), it is available in the market. I use it in baking and whereever corn flour is used in regular cooking. In case u don't have this flour, use corn flour or maida in place of that.

For the cake


  • Wheat flour/Atta- 1 cup
  • Arrow root/Corn flour - 1/2 cup
  • Baking powder - 2 tspn
  • Salt - 1/4 tspn

  • All spice powder- 1/2 tspn (Mix of cinnamon,nutmeg and cloves)
  • Vanilla essence - 1 tspn

  •  Butter - 1/2 cup
  • Sugar- 1/2 cup
  • Milk - 1/2 cup
  • Flaxseed meal - 1 tblspn mixed in 1 cup of water

  For topping

  • Butter - 2 tblspn
  • Brown Sugar - 1/2 cup
  • All spice powder - 1/4 tspn
  • One applie sliced

Melt sugar and butter in microwave for a minute. Stir in the spice powder.


Seive together the dry ingredients - Wheat flour,arrow root flour, baking powder and salt. I always measure the dry ingredients to an airtight container and shake it well for few times so that the ingredients gets mixed up well.


Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy.


Add milk and flaxseed meal mixed with water to the sugar butter mix. Fold in the dry ingredients to the wet mix. Finally mix in the spice powder and vanilla essence.


Grease the cake tin with butter or oil and lightly dust with flour. Pour the melted sugar+butter mix. Arrange the sliced appales overlapping each slice. Pour the cake batter on top of the arranged apple slices.

Bake in a preheated oven at 180 C for 55 minutes. Cool the cake and invert it carefully. The cake was slightly denser yet soft.

 P.S. Have you left your comment here to stand a chance to win $50 gift certificate? You have time till 15th July,2010.

July 2, 2010

Another CSN promoted giveaway for readers

Its time for another giveaway at Kailas Kitchen. Thanks to the promo team at CSN lighting for giving me the opportunity. CSN stores has more than 200 online stores, each catering to sepcific requirements.

Last time,readers had a limited choice in term of gift selection. Now, the winner is free to choose a gift from any of the CSN online store. Yes, you need not limit to one gift alone. You can purchase more than one to tally $50 gift certificate you are going to win.

You will be like a kid in the candy store not knowing what to choose, while you browse the online stores. Just to give you an idea, here are some of the items you can purchase.

        Green Empire Shade with Jacquard and Beads                 Angled Glass Shade in Blue


           Coffee Grinder                                    12 Piece Cookware Set


                                            Wallet in Red

All you have to do to win the gift certificate is to leave a comment below.  Please make sure your email will be available to me from your comment. The free gift will shipped to US/Canada only. For readers outside US/Canada,  if you can give an address in the shipping country, its fine. You have time till 15th July to leave your comment to stand a chance to win the $50 gift certificate.