Ramanavami Special

Ramanavami Special

Lord Rama’s birthday is celebrated all over India on the 9th day, Navami of the Chaitra month. It also signifies the end of Vasant Navaratri. Lord Rama, the seventh Avatar of Lord Vishnu, was born to King Dasaratha and Queen Kaushalya, in order to slay the dangerous demon king Ravana. To celebrate his birth, devotees all over the country perform pujas, sing bhajans and offer a variety of  prasad as holy offerings to the Lord. Here are a few of them.

1.Panakam – Jaggery Water

A very easy drink to make, this dish is a coolant in these hot summer times.

You need –

1 cup Water

1/4  cup Jaggery

1/2 tsp crushed cardamom

1/4tsp dry ginger powder


Soak the jaggery in water for about 15 mins. Once it melts mix it well to make sure there are no lumps left. Strain it to remove impurities. Now add the cardamom and dry ginger and stir. It can be served as it is or chilled.

2. Neer Mor – Buttermilk

Add water to curd and churn it to get diluted buttermilk. Add salt, hing, chopped green chillies, grated ginger,curry leaves and coriander leaves. Serve chilled.

3. Kosambari – Moong Salad

Soak the Moong Dal for an hour. Drain the water. Heat a little oil and add mustard seeds to it. When it crackles add it to the Moong Salad. Add salt, chopped green chillies, grated coconut and coriander leaves.  This is served as it is to the God.

Hope you all enjoy preparing these simple prasadams.



Celebrate the Harvest

Celebrate the Harvest

Makar Sankranti, the four day harvest festival of India is here and we are ready to express our gratitude to the life giving Sun, the life bearing Earth and the bounty that we have received through them, through the year. Known by different names across the country Pongal, Lohri, Bhogali Bihu, the celebrations are diverse and specific to each region. The Sun moves into the Makar rasi or Capricorn constellation marking the end of winter and Dakshinayana and the start of spring and Uttarayana, the auspicious period.  Devotees take a dip in the holy rivers. Homes are stocked with newly reaped harvest and hearts are overflowing with thanks, joy and gratitude.

With more than half the population of the country engaged in agriculture and allied activities, the mood of celebration grips the entire nation. Preparations begin weeks in advance. City dwellers book their tickets in advance for a trip to the hometown because they know the last minute surge pricing will burn a hole in their pockets. Those who haven’t been able to go back hometowns take to rooftops and playgrounds armed with colourful kites because the breeze is inviting and the sun is nice and warm.

In every village, farmers clean and paint their homes. Old stuff is taken out and made a bonfire of, on Bhogi the first day of the festival. People dance and sing around the bonfire to keep the last of the biting cold away.  In a run up to the festival the front yard is given a cow dung water wash every morning. Rice flour kolams and colourful rangavallis decorate every threshold in the South.

Haridasu’ sing out their stories. ‘Gangireddu, the decorated bull who is seen as ‘Nandishwara’ dances to drum beats and music in every street. This is an ancient art form of entertainment that brings the community together. Recreational animal sports like cock fighting, jallikattu, kambala are looked forward to. On the third day of Kanumu, the ancestors are remembered and blessings sought from elders.

Women get busy making snacks like palli laddu, sakkinalu and muruku in the SouthIn the North they make gajak, a popular snackIn the South, cooking Pongal in a mudpot with milk and new rice is an age old tradition. As the milk boils over, everyone calls out ‘Pongalo pongal’ to usher in prosperity into their homes.


Try out these traditional recipes and relish during Sankranti. In keeping with the spirit of gratitude to mother earth, we recommend that you choose organic and locally sourced ingredients, pour out all your love and gratitude in the making of these dishes. Nothing describes celebration more than a delicious and nourishing meal.

Ven Pongal (Also called the Savory Pongal):


  • 1/2 cup rice
  • 1/2 cup split moong dal
  • Salt to taste

For Seasoning:

  • 2 tbsps ghee
  •  1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 inch piece of ginger
  • 1 tsp black pepper, coarsely pounded
  • 2 tsps cashew nuts pieces
  • 1 sprig curry leaves


Wash the moong dal and rice and keep aside. In a pot, add a little ghee and roast the dal till the raw flavour disappears. Add five cups of water and some salt. Cook till soft. Mash the dal rice mix well with a ladle. The consistency should be somewhat loose. In a seasoning ladle, take some ghee, add cashew nut and fry till golden brown. Remove and keep aside. In the same ladle, add cumin seeds, grated ginger and curry leaves. When it is spluttering, add to the pongal and stir well. Garnish with fried cashew nuts and serve hot with coconut chutney.

Sweet Pongal:


  • 1 cup rice
  • 1/4 cup chana dal
  • 1-1/2 cup jaggery
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups water

For Seasoning:

  • 2 tbsps ghee
  • Raisins, cashews, almonds, cardamom


Roast the rice and chana dal separately just till they are hot, not brown. Now boil the milk and water. Once the milk starts bubbling, add the roasted rice and dal and let them cook. In a separate pan, melt the jaggery in half a cup of water till it reaches one string consistency. When the rice and dal are cooked to a porridge like consistency, add this jaggery mixture and switch off the stove. Do not light the stove and cook once you add the jaggery mixture, as the pongal will curdle. (Jaggery and milk when cooked, curdle). Mix all the contents in your vessel, till they blend. In a seasoning spoon, add ghee. Once it melts, add the cashews,almonds, raisins and elaichi. Add this seasoning to the prepared Pongal and serve hot.

You can buy organic ingredients listed in the above recipes from Amazon or BigBasket

Sujata C

Recipes by Bhuvana

Sweet and Spice on a Platter – Thiruvadarai Kali and Kozhambu

Sweet and Spice on a Platter – Thiruvadarai Kali and Kozhambu

The cold Marghazi / Dhanur month of our Tamil Calendar brings in a series of early morning pujas and delicious prasadams, Ven Pongal being a standard neivedhyam for every Dhanur masa pujai. On the full moon day of this month, we celebrate Thiruvadarai, which has many a concept attached to it. Some say this is the day Shiva entranced his devotees with his Cosmic Dance, while some believe that Lord Shiva agreed to marry Goddess Parvathy and so, the beliefs go on. This is the day of the Aarudra/Thiruvadarai star which can be spotted shining bright red like a ruby, in the North-West skies.

The unique thing that is common across most tamil households is the Kali, that is made as prasadam on this day along with the Ezhukari kootu/kozhambu. This awesome combination is mouth-watering and irresistible.

KALI Recipe


  • 1 cup white rice
  • 1 tablespoon Toor Dal
  • 1 cup Jaggery (adjust acc to taste)
  • ½ cup grated coconut
  • 3 cups water

For Seasoning

  • 1tbsp ghee
  • Raisins
  • Almonds
  • Cashew
  • Cardamom


Wash the rice and dry roast till it turns brown. Cool it down and pulse it so the rice is broken. Sieve the broken rice and discard the fine powder. Boil the Toor Dal separately till it is half cooked.

Now boil 3 cups of water. (You can adjust the water according to how your rice cooks). Add the roasted broken rice to the boiling water and cook. In a separate pan, boil water and dissolve the jaggery in it. Add the half cooked toor dal and grated coconut and let it boil for a few minutes. We don’t need a one string consistency for this recipe. Add this jaggery water to the cooked rice and transfer the contents to a pressure cooker. Cook for 2 whistles (adjust according to your cooker). This helps in getting the kali to be soft and fluffy instead of being pasty.

Heat ghee in a pan and roast the almonds, cashews, raisins and cardamom. Add this to the hot kali and enjoy!


Ezhukari kozhambu, as the name suggests has seven vegetables in it. You can use more than seven too. It tastes awesome when taken with the Kali.


  • 4 cups Mixed vegetables (Carrots, Peas, Ash gourd, French Beans, Red Pumpkin, Potatoes, Cucumber, Flat Beans)
  • 1- 1/2 cups toor dal
  • 1/2 cup tamarind soaked in hot water
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/4th tsp turmeric powder

For Frying and Grinding:

  • 2tbsp chana dal
  • 2 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 5-6 red chillies
  • A pinch of asafoetida
  • 1 tsp raw rice
  • ½ cup grated coconut

For Seasoning:

  • 2 tsps ghee
  • 1tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/4th tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 1 pinch asafoetida
  • 8-10 curry leaves


Pressure cook the Toor Dal and keep it aside. Use the soaked Tamarind to make 5 cups of Tamarind water. Boil the vegetables in Tamarind water along with Turmeric and salt as required. Roast all the ingredients for the masala in very little oil and grind it in a mixer. Once the vegetables are par boiled, add this ground masala to the tamarind water and boil. When the vegetables are cooked, add the boiled Toor Dal along with little water left over from cooking the dal, for getting the consistency of the kozhambu.

Heat ghee in a seasoning spoon and add all the ingredients for seasoning. Once they splutter, add it to the kozhambu. Our Ezhukari Kozhambu is ready to be served with Kali.

Enjoy our traditional Kali and Kozhambu that taste like heaven, on a cold Marghazi Day!

Dwadasi Rasam

Dwadasi Rasam

Today is Ekadasi, the 11th day after the new moon (Amavasya). Traditionally folks used to fast on Ekadasi day. The terms of fasting ranges from full to partial depending on age, and how devout one is.

The following day, Dwadasi, in Tamilian families, they cook a special rasam, called Dwadasi Rasam. The main difference between regular rasam and this rasam is that moong dal is used instead of toor dal. Reason being that coming out of fasting, one should be eating food that is easy to digest. The traditional tamarind and tomatoes are also skipped, and lemon juice is used instead.

I have seen several recipes of dwadasi rasam include toor dal as well. As with the diversity of our country, one can expect many variations in this as well.

Try this dwadasi rasam. Tell us what you think, and please add your variations to the comments section as well.


  • Moong Dal (Split) – ¼ cup
  • Turmeric Powder ½ tsp.
  • Water 2 cups.
  • Grated Ginger 1 tbsp
  • Chopped curry leaves – a few
  • Lemon Juice 2 tbsp.
  • Salt to taste.

Roast and Powder coarsely

  • Urad dal (Split) ¾ tsp.
  • Chana dal ½ tsp.
  • Black Pepper 1 tbsp.
  • Jeera  1 tsp.
  • Red Chilies  2 no.
  • Curry Leaves


  • Oil 1 tbsp (cold pressed groundnut oil or sesame oil works great. Adds a nice aroma) .
  • Mustard seeds 1/2 tsp
  • Curry leaves a little
  • Crushed red chilies 2 no.
  • Asafoetida (Hing) a pinch
  • Chopped Coriander leaves for garnish


  • Pressure cook the dal with turmeric powder. Mash the dal and add 2 cup of water and dilute it. Transfer into the big vessel.
  • Add salt, turmeric powder, ginger, curry leaves and Hing and bring to boil on low fire.
  • In mean time, roast above ingredients (except jeera) and powder it coarsely along with jeera.
  • Add ground powder and boil , while rasam froths up, remove from the fire.
  • With one tablespoon oil, fry the mustard seeds ,when they burst add curry leaves crushed red chilies and Hing to it and pour them to the Rasam.
  • Add freshly squeezed lemon juice and mix well.
  • Garnish with chopped cilantro.

Note: Lemon juice gives the sourness and pepper gives the taste and strong aroma for the rasam.