Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Ginger Capsicum Fried Rice from The Mainland China and a review

I'm sure all of us must have tried at least once to recreate our favorite dish from a restaurant from which we have ate once or we frequent often. We usually try to guess that secret ingredient that gives the dish a unique flavor or taste. So how will it be when you have a ready reckoner to whip up a complete meal with the dishes from your restaurant coming from the person who started the chain of restaurants.  Yes, I am talking about The Mainland China chain of restaurants, started by Anjan Chatterjee. Anjan Chatterjee has come up with a cookbook to help in cooking Mainland China's signature dishes right at our homes.

The book starts with an introduction from the author and moves on to a briefing on Chinese regional cuisines, the utensils and various cooking methods, to  give a sneak peak into the Chinese cuisine. Notes about the ingredients commonly used in the book and with possible substitutes is quite helpful. The recipes for basic sauces, dips and pastes are interesting. The recipes are neatly divided into sections as starters, vegetables, fish, chicken to name a few.

A recipe is more interesting with a snapshot of the dish along with. Probably, coming from a famous restaurant, I guess, the recipes have taken the priority since the readers must be familiar with the dishes. This is not to say that the book is devoid of any pics. There are few drool worthy pictures in the middle of the book. 

I liked the two column lay out of the recipe with ingredients and method. There is ample space on each page to jot down your notes too. The only downside of the recipe is that there is no uniform format followed for the the measurement of ingredients. Its a mix of gm, ml, tblspn and tspn. Some of the recipes calls for 2gms of ginger/onion etc, which could have been made simpler and easier to comprehend. And a kitchen scale is not very common in Indian kitchens. I don't own one. But our Indian style of cooking with eyeball measurements comes in handy here.

When I received a mail from the publishers, I wondered if  I could do justice to the book, being a vegetarian. I was happy seeing the book, since I had enough choices to try from. Already I have tried their Ginger capsicum Fried Rice and crackling spinach. I have bookmarked many more - Hot and Sour vegetable Soup, Steamed Rice rolls with Vegetables, Cashew and chilly fried rice to name a few and their basic sauces and dips which are doable too. 

Here is the recipe for Ginger Capsicum Fried Rice as given in the book. The measurements I used is given in brackets


  • Long grain rice, cooked - 500 g (2 cups of cooked rice)
  • Groundnut oil - 30 ml
  • Ginger, shredded - 40 g ( 2inch piece)
  • Capsicum, shredded - 80 g (half of a capsicum)
  • Salt - 1 tsp
  • White pepper - 1 tsp
  • Spring onion, chopped - 2 

Heat the wok till it is smoking hot

Add oil and moderately heat to 120 C. You can either use a thermometer or put a cube of stale bread into the oil. It should get brown slowly and not immediately.

Add the ginger and stir-fry.

Add the capsicum and stir-fry til you can smell the aroma.

Add the rice, salt and white pepper. Toss well.

Add the chopped spring onion.

Remove from heat and serve hot.

The dish is simple yet very flavorful and delicious. Ginger is a favorite with me and loved biting the  crunchy ginger.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Savory Wheat Biscuits

My mom used to make this snack often and I used to love it. You can make these biscuits in huge quantities and store for a few days. I will post the sweet version later. For now, enjoy my savory version.
This is the first time I am giving step by step procedure. Hope it will be useful for you.

Wheat flour - 1 cup
Oil - 1 tbsp
Hing - 1/4 tsp
Green chilli - 1
Mint & Coriander leaves - 2 tbsp
Butter - 1 tbsp
Oil - To deep fry

To wheat flour, add salt, hing, softened butter, finely minced green chilli, mint and coriander leaves.
Take about 1/2 cup water (approximately) and add it little by little to the flour and knead for 10 minutes. If the dough is tight, add some more water. If it is very loose, add some flour.
Add oil at this stage and make a soft dough.

Slightly dust the surface with some flour. Take a small portion of the dough. Roll it and flatten using a rolling pin into circular shape.

The roti should neither be too thin nor thick.

Heat a griddle and cook the roti for 10 seconds on each side. It should not be cooked fully.
Repeat this procedure for rest of the rotis.

Stack them and cut into squares.

Heat oil in a pan.
When it is hot, fry the cut pieces in small batches to golden brown.

Cool completely and store in air tight containers.
Serve with tea/coffee.

Make Sure You Have Proper Air Circulation Throughout Your Home

Going in Circles is Great for Heating & Cooling Comfort and Energy Efficiency!

Uneven air circulation and distribution of both heated and cooled air is a common problem in many households. Industry experts say that improper air flow can actually reduce the efficiency of your heating and air conditioning equipment by as much as 60%! They also say that improper air flow is one of the most common causes of heating and air conditioning system breakdowns. That's because when air is not flowing smoothly through your home, it puts extra demand on your heating and cooling equipment to force warm or cool air throughout the home.

Proper air circulation is extremely important if you want to get the most out of your heating and air conditioning system. Think of each room in your home as a section of a wheel. When you don’t get air good circulation in one room, it’s like having a flat spot on a wheel; the wheel is not going to roll smoothly. With central air conditioning and heating, one room with bad circulation can keep air from circulating smoothly throughout the rest of your house.

If your heating and air conditioning system lacks even air circulation between rooms and floors of the home, temperature and humidity can differ greatly from room to room. If one or more parts of your home are too warm or too cool, the overall comfort level of your home will feel out of balance. It may also force you to run your heater or air conditioner more in certain rooms; this can put unnecessary demand on your heating and air conditioning system, which can lead to premature breakdowns and higher energy bills.

The key to consistent year-round comfort is consistent air circulation. So how do you get proper air circulation throughout your home? It starts with installing a heating and air conditioning system that designed for your home's heating and air conditioning requirements. Is your heating and air conditioning equipment sized properly so that it doesn't produce too much or too little heated or cooled air? Does it have the proper efficiency rating? A system analysis of your home including a load calculation (a mathematical estimate of the amount of air that needs to be generated to efficiently heat and cool each room) can provide great insight as to whether your system is putting out too much or too little air.

Good ductwork design is another key component to getting good air circulation and consistent heating and cooling comfort. Because the ducts in your home carry the air to each rooms, it is important that they are the correct size and length to deliver the proper amount of heating and cooling. It's also important where in your home they are located and whether or not they have any leaks or damage.

If you're thinking of installing a new heating and air conditioning system, make sure your HVAC contractor not only explains how your equipment is sized and that it is of the right efficiency for your home, but that he submits and reviews with you a copy of the ductwork design. This will help assure you that you’ll be getting the proper air circulation and won't be disappointed with the way your new heating and air conditioning system performs.

At Horizon Services, our comfort consultants and HVAC technicians are always happy to discuss with you how to get the right air circulation and most consistent heating and cooling throughout your home. Give us a call!

Related Information from Horizon Services...

Mathan Pradhaman - Pumpkin cooked in jaggery syrup and coconut milk

Before I move on with posting the other recipes in my drafts, let me finish off the dishes that I made during the festivals in the last week. Last week, for two days together, it was festive lunch on account of Onam and Avaniavittom. For Onam, I made paladapradhaman. While I was chatting with my cousin over phone, who is a great foodie himself, asked me the payasams I am planning for  the oncoming festivals. I had decided paladapradhaman to make from scratch and I was contemplating on various options for another payasam. It was then he suggested about mathan paradhaman. He reminiscenced that our grand father had prepared this for grihapravesam after my parents wedding. And then, no one could find out the ingredient in the pradhaman. Recalling those instances were enough for me to decide that I will make this for Avaniavittom, provided I get ripe pumpkin.

You need

  • Cooked and pureed pumpkin - 1 cup heaped
  • Powdered jaggery - 1 1/2 cups
  • Coconut milk - 3 halves of coconut
  • Coconut bits fried in ghee - 2 tblspn
  • Dry ginger powder -1/2 tspn


Chop pumpkin into cubes. Pressure cook with just enough water to cover the pieces for 2 whistles. You can cook on stove top also till it is mashable. Drain the water and mash the pumpkin pieces till smooth. Alternatively can pulse for few seconds in the mixer grinder. The drained water can be used in soups.

Extract three sets of milk from freshly grated coconuts. I have written here about extracting milk.

Melt jaggery in a cup of water and strain for any impurities. Heat the melted jaggery syrup in a thick bottomed vessel. When the syrup thickens, stir in the pumpkin puree. Continue cooking till it thickens to a flaky consistency so that the pumpkin must have absorbed the sweetness very well. Add the third, thin coconut milk and keep stirring. When it reduces to half in volume, add the second, slightly thick coconut milk and continue cooking till it reduces to almost half in volume. Switch off the heat and stir in the first, thick coconut milk. Heat ghee in a pan and fry the coconut bits till brown. I did not have any coconut left so fried cashews instead. Add dry ginger powder. 

My husband and mother-in-law and friends who tasted this payasam could not guess the ingredient as pumpkin. It was very tasty and creamy, similar to parippu pradhaman.

P.S Watch out for the review of  a cook book, which contains recipes from a leading restaurant chain in India.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Badam Burfi/Almond Squares

In my Okra-Fry post, i have mentioned about Pongiduthal tradition. Now, for that feast we made some Badam burfi. This Is my SIL's(Brother's Wife) recipe. Though she was trying this for the first time, it came out great. Very soft and Flavourful!!!!

1 cup Almonds
1 cup Sugar
3- 4 tbsp Clarified Butter
Roasted Almonds for Garnishing

Soak almonds Overnight. Next Day Morning, peel the skin and Grind the almonds to fine paste, without adding any water.
In a Heavy Bottom pan, Put the almond mixture and Sugar together and keep stirring. The Sugar starts melting and this almond mixture gets cooked. Add the ghee and mix well. Keep Stirring. Mean-while, grease a flat plate with some ghee and keep it ready.

Once the Almond mixture, starts leaving the sides of the pan, Pour it on the grease plate and spread it flat.

Let it cool, then use a sharp knife and cut it into squares.Decorated the top with some roasted almonds.

 Store the squares in a Air-tight Container and Enjoy!!!

Sending this to Festive Food - Rakhi 2010 @ Indian Khana by Priti And to 'Only' Kids Delight @ Foodelicious by Pari and to Dish Name starts with A @ Akila's Kitchen

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Olan- ash gourd, red pumpkin and cowpeas cooked in thin coconut milk

Olan is a bland dish with the flavor of coconut. It is part of the traditional Kerala meal. It is a very simple dish yet very flavorful. Red pumpkin adds slight sweetness to the dish. Olan can be made with just ash gourd and pumpkin alone. You can throw in few long yard beans also to it. And cow peas (small brown colored beans) can also be added. Sometimes, few pieces of taro root/arbi is also added. You can mix and match the ingredients according to the availability.  The vegetables can be cooked in water or thin coconut milk to add up the flavor. 

You need

  • Ash gourd/Kumbalanga - 250 gms
  • Pumpkin/Mathanga - 250 gms
  • Long yard bean/Payar - 5 nos (optional)
  • Cowpeas/vellapayar - a handful
  • Green chilli - 1 no
  • Thick Coconut milk - 3 tblspn
  • Coconut oil - 1 tspn
  • Salt to taste


Pressure cook cow peas till soft. I have used black eyed beans. Peel the skin from the vegetables and remove the seeds. Chop both pumpkin and ash gourd into thin squares. Trim the edges of long yard beans and cut into 1 inch long pieces. Dilute 2 tablespoon of coconut milk in 1 1/2 cups of water. Add the chopped vegetables to it. Add a slit green chilly and salt to it.

While its half cooked, add the cooked cow peas to it. Be gentle while you mix the veggies when it is cooking so as not to break them much. Cook till the veggies are soft yet firm. Remove from heat. Add the remaining coconut milk and mix gently. Drizzle a teaspoon of coconut oil and cover it, for the flavors to steep in. Serve hot. The aroma of veggies cooked in coconut milk and of  coconut oil is very tantalizing. If cowpeas is used, it will slighty color the olan to light brown.

Friday, August 27, 2010


This is a famous poriyal in the native place though there are some variations in the cooking. Fresh and tender cluster beans taste delicious when they are cooked as poriyal.

கொத்தவரங்காய் பொரியல்


Cluster beans- 250 gm
Finely chopped onion-1
Finely chopped green chillies-2
Mustard seeds- 1 tsp
Black gram- 1 tsp
Curry leaves- 1 arc
Chopped coriander- 3 tbsp
Salt to taste
Oil- 2 tbsp
Turmeric powder- half sp
Shredded coconut- half cup
Asafetida- half sp


Cut the cluster beans into fine small pieces.
Boil them with salt, turmeric powder and enough water until they are ¾th cooked.
Drain off the excessive water.
Heat a kadai and pour the oil.
Add the mustard seeds and when they splutter add the black gram.
Fry it for a few seconds and add the onion with the green chillies, asafetida, curry leaves and the coriander.
Add a pinch of salt and cook for a few seconds.
Add the cooked cluster beans and fry them for a few seconds on a slow fire.
Lastly add the coconut, put off the fire and mix well.
Tasty cluster beans poriyal is ready now!!



Two months prior to the arrival of a new born baby, our ancestral home always transformed into a mini factory which produced various baby products. Great grand mother, grand mother and mother were buzzing like busy bees, preparing coconut oil and herbal baby bath powder for the baby's massage, kan mai ( kajal, eye liner ) to keep the baby's eyes cool and protect them from infection , legiyam (a tonic made out of 72 select ingredients) and fresh ghee for the new mother. Roots and fruits were collected, sterilized, dried and stored for administering 'urai marundu' to the new born after theoil massage. Old dothies were laundered and cut out and stitched into soft and comfortable nappies. Old cotton sarees were converted into small quilts for swaddling the new baby. Garments worn by the previously born babies which was considered auspicious for a new born's first use, were brought down the attic for repair and wash. Aunts were busy knitting sweaters and booties.

My mother was overwhelmed with a flood of old memories when she visited us to see her Sydney born great grand daughter. She felt immensely sorry for the baby who did not have the opportunity to enjoy the luxury of all the traditional pampering. To satisfy my mother, and out of my own curiosity I decided to make coconut oil at home for the baby's massage as directed by my mother.

Firstly, the selection of coconut is very important for extracting a thick and rich milk, which in turn would yield pure coconut oil. Big and ripe coconuts with thick kernels are favourable . coconuts with dark coloured shells indicate that they are ripe.

Ripe coconuts - 6
1. Break the coconuts into neat halves and grate them on a clean surface.
1. Using a sharp knife disengage the coconut kernel from the shell and cut into small pieces.

2. Grind the coconut gratings or the pieces using a mixer grinder into a smooth paste, adding little water if required.

3. Pass the ground coconut paste through a sieve which has a fine mesh, and squeeze out the coconut milk by pressing with the back of a ladle. Squeezing with a clean hand will give the best results.
3. Filter the paste using a clean cloth , wringing it to express the coconut milk.

4. After extracting the milk, add a little more water to the coconut gratings to extract as much as milk as possible.

5. Pour the coconut milk into a heavy bottomed vessel and start heating.
6. As the coconut milk boils, the oil will start separating from the milk solids and form into small globules. Keep stirring so that the coconut milk solids do not settle down at the bottom of the vessel and get burnt.

7. After almost an hour the white colour of the milk solids will change into a chocolate brown colour and the pleasant aroma of fresh coconut oil will start filling the air. This is the stage where children like to hover around to taste the flavoursome brown solids which tastes sweet like coconut toffees.

8. Keep cooking for a few more minutes till the milk solids crumble and acquire the colour of dark chocolate which will settle down at the bottom of the vessel. Pure coconut oil will be clearly visible on top of the residue.

9. Decant or filter the honey coloured pure home made coconut oil and store in a dry and clean bottle. If the selected coconuts are ripe enough, 6 of them will yield about 200ml of pure coconut oil.

This oil is very good for a baby's body massage.
Dishes like Avial, Mor Kuzhambu or Koottu taste heavenly when garnished with 1/2 tsp of home made coconut oil.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Merillat & Curtis Stone - What a Combo!

I recently received the below email from the Merillat cabinetry's marketing people:


Whipping up your dream kitchen is quicker than making dinner with new step-by-step planner

ADRIAN (Mich.), August 11, 2010 /PRNewswire/

Planning a dream kitchen has just gotten a little easier with Merillat’s new intuitive online tool called the Step-by-Step Kitchen Planner. Designed to guide homeowners through a customized planning process, the Step-by-Step Kitchen Planner helps them find the most appropriate styles, products and features for their lifestyles, and visualize their new kitchen choices in a virtual rendering that can be shared with their local Merillat dealer.

Intrigued, I linked over to their site and gave their "Step-by-Step Kitchen Planner" a test drive. They even have wonder-chef Curtis Stone as their spokesperson. Cool.

Here are the results:

Thing is: I requested a PENINSULA, not an island, in my "dream kitchen". I also requested provisions for my husband, who does his cooking in a wheelchair. Alas, not there. A cooktop and separate oven below??? Where are they? Many other details were also missing, but those are the biggies.

I guess this is what you can expect from a free design service from a contractor grade cabinet line. Your friendly Merillat dealer can make the corrections.


Memories of my India trip - Very sweet and a bit of sourness to it

Hi.I am back again on my blog after more than 2 months. I spent the first half of summer very fruitfully being in India and enjoyed a lot. Kaiyendhi Bhavan food, Gol-guppa's, Chai wala's chai and many more. Enjoyed all the platform shopping and did loads of shopping.

But fate had something else in store for me. A few days before my departure back to the US, I met with an accident and had a bad fracture in my left ankle. I am completely on bed rest for the next 6 weeks and I just hope that I will be back on my toes again and resume my normal activities as before. This accident has paralyzed a lot my activities and has made me very frustrated.

I want to get back home soon and return to my normal work schedule. I am finding out ways with which I can update some easy and simple recipes on my blog to make the best use of my time. I am wondering if I can update some yummy recipes and keep this blog more active.I am gathering a lot of courage and strength to be positive all the time and get well soon.

Fougasse 叶形烤饼

It has been quite a long time I didn't touch my mixer and oven. I do miss them and my hand do itchy but just can't help myself to get some energy to start with anything. Today, I feel a bit of strength to get into the kitchen. So, I decide to make something for breakfast and something savory that can suit my appetite. I flipped through 孟老师的100道面包 for reference and realized there is a Fougasse recipe which I haven't try before. As it's quite simple and I've all the ingredients on hand, without thinking much I quickly tuck into the kitchen and start making it.

Other than the herbs toppings recommended from the recipe, I would like to add some filling into the dough to make it much flavorful and tastier which is some fried back bacon, caramelized onion and cheddar cheese. I must say the result is so excellent! It taste really fantastic with the fragrant of herbs toppings. The crust is crisp and the fillings of back bacon, cheese and onion is a winner! This Fougasse do not need any companion as it taste good as it is. But it would be great to serve with soup, dippings or even half boil eggs for breakfast too. I will definitely bake this again. Very satisfy!

(A) 200g Bread flour / 50g plain flour / 10g caster sugar / 1/2 teaspoon salt / 1/2 teaspoon instant yeast / 150g water / 10g unsalted butter

(B) 1 red onion (finely chopped and stir fry with some salt until soften) / 2 slices back bacon (finely chopped and stir fry until crisp and golden) / 100g cheddar cheese (diced in small cubes about 1 cm)

(C) 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper / 1/4 teaspoon sea salt / 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves / 1/2 dried basil leaves / 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  1. Mix ingredients (A) except butter with a dough hook until everything form into a dough. Add in the butter and continue the kneading process until a smooth dough.

  2. Let it proof for 60 minutes while you prepare ingredients (B) and (C). Fry the onion until soften and the bacon until crisp and golden brown then set aside to cool. Cut the cheddar cheese in small cubes about 1cm. Mix all the prepared ingredients (B) together and divide into 7 portions. Mix ingredients (C) in another small bowl except the extra virgin olive oil.

  3. Divide the dough into seven portions and fill each dough with mixture (B) and shape them into small ball. Let them rest for 10 minutes.

  4. Roll out each doughs into an oval shape and cut a few strips on the flatten doughs. Brush the dough with the extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle over some ingredient (C).

  5. Proof for about 20 minutes and bake at 200C preheated oven for about 15 to 20 minutes. Enjoy!
PS: The crust of Fougasse will turn soft the next day. To get a crusty crust, reheat it in the oven at about 150C for less than 5 minutes.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sweet Sevai (Rice Noodles flavored with jaggery and coconut)

Sevai - A type of rice noodles,  is a light tiffin/snack item flavored with lemon, coconut or jaggery.  Today I am posting the sweet version using jaggery.

Serves 4
Instant Rice Noodles - 200 grams
Coconut - 1/2 cup
Jaggery - 3/4 cup
Cardamom - 1/4 tsp
Ghee - 1 tsp
Cashews - a handful
Raisins (optional) - 2 tsp

Immerse rice noodles in boiling hot water for 2 minutes and drain.
In another pan, roast cashews and raisins and set aside. In the same pan, fry coconut till it turns light golden brown.
Mix jaggery with 1/4 cup water and cardamom. Heat the mixture till jaggery dissolves in water and starts to thicken. It will take about 5 minutes. Filter the jaggery water to remove any stones.
Now mix the rice noodles, coconut, jaggery syrup and cashews and toss well.
Serve warm.

My close friend, Sharmi insisted that I should send some snack item for her event. I thought I will send this recipe.

BTUs and Your Air Conditioner

A British Thermal Unit -- or BTU -- is the measure of an air conditioner’s power output and cooling capability. Normal BTU range for most air conditioners goes from around 5000 for a small window unit to 30,000 or more for a central AC system. BTU output is directly related to the size and cost of a unit—lower BTU means less power and lower cost, higher BTU means more power and higher cost. When you’re shopping for a new air conditioner, pay special attention to BTU because this is the best indicator of whether the unit is powerful enough to meet your needs.

What is a BTU?
If you’re talking about air conditioners, BTU describes the power capacity of a specific unit. Generally, BTU output corresponds to the size of the space an AC can cool—a unit with more BTU can cool a larger room. About 20 BTUs are needed for each square foot of space in a room or home. Other things to consider are the height of ceilings, size and number of windows, and amount of insulation.

Still, BTU is a fairly accurate indicator of cooling capability, though it usually makes sense to adjust down. For example, if your living room is 10 feet by 15 feet and has a total area of 150 square feet, you’d multiply that by 20 BTUs to get 3000. Therefore, you’d need an air conditioner with at least 3000 BTUs to effectively cool your living room. However, when you take into account the other factors that impact the space—like cathedral ceilings, large windows, or an unusually warm climate—you may find that 3000 BTUs are not enough to keep you cool. In that case, it’s obviously best to choose a unit with higher BTU.

BTU Range
There’s a wide range of BTU outputs available in both commercial and residential air conditioners. Most residential units average 5000 to 30,000 BTUs. 12,000 BTUs equals one ton of air; some units are marked with a measurement in tons rather than BTU. A “2-ton” AC, for instance, means that the unit has an output of 24,000 BTUs.

Portable air conditioners average about 5000 to 12,000 BTUs. Wall and window units can reach upwards of 24,000 BTUs at the high end. Mini split systems range from 9000 to 24,000 BTUs, while multi-split systems and central air conditioners can put out 30,000 BTUs or more. Industrial air conditioning systems frequently have BTU output significantly higher than 30,000.

Not only will BTU tell you how much room an air conditioner can cool, but it can also give you an idea of how much you’ll have to pay to run it. The more BTUs a unit uses, the more it will cost to operate. To save money on utilities, look for air conditioners with a high Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating (or SEER). Additional features like programmable thermostats, timers, fans, and power-saving settings can reduce strain on your system, boost efficiency, and lower your energy costs while still keeping your home cool.

Related Air Conditioning Information from Horizon Services...

Palada pradhaman from scratch ~ Kerala Special

Hope all of you who celebrate Onam had it in a grand way. This Onam, I wanted to make the most favored payasam of Kerala - Palada pradhaman. Now a days making palada isn't a big affair when you can have ready made ada packets off the shelf from stores. But I wanted to try it from scratch i.e prepare ada at home.

Traditionally the batter is spread on banana leaf and is rolled and tied with the string from the leaves itself. Then these rolled leaves are dropped in boiling water and cooked. The adai is peeled from the leaves and cut into pieces. I was thinking of doing it the same way. But I haven't seen this myself and all I have is the theoretical knowledge of it. Just before making, called my amma to clear my doubts. My sister picked up the call and I said the reason for my calling and she was like I am enough to clear your doubts. And she told she she has made ada twice from scratch. She suggested me to use the vadam stand which will be easier to manage.

Preparing the ada

You need

Raw rice flour - 1 cup

Salt a pinch


Soak rice for 5 hours or overnight.Grind to a smooth paste with a pinch of salt. The batter should not be very runny. While grinding the rice, take care not to add to much water and end up with a runny batter.
Spread the batter slightly thick on the greased plate.

Steam for 10 minutes. Remove the ada from  the plate and cut into four.

 Score into strips and chop into tiny bits.

By this time, the ada would have dried a bit and it will not be sticky. Transfer the bits to plate.

Repeat the steps with the remaining batter and store the ada in the refrigerator if you are not using it right away. If you have good sunshine, you could sun dry it and store in an air tight container for a long time. 

The ada measured to 1 cups heaped.

To prepare the palada pradhaman

You need
Ada - 1 cup heaped

Sugar - 2 cups

Milk - 2 litres


Usually, the ada is cooked in  a mix of water and milk , till it turns soft. Then milk is added in installments and cooked till it is thick and then sugar is added to it and it is further cooked to attain a creamy consistency. All this will take loads of time. So I tipped all the ingredients to my 7 litre  cooker and pressure cooked for one whistle and kept the heat in lowest flame and continued for another 15 minutes. By then the pressure had build up inside and milk started coming out of the pressure vent along with the whistle. I switched off the heat and left if for half an hour.

Opened the pressure cooker and went on to cook till it had a creamy consistency which took nearly an hour on medium heat. Cooking in the pressure helped to get that pink color which intensed on further cooking and could cut down the cooking time and constant stirring. Leave it for an hour or so to let the pradhaman mature the flavor further.  The test for doneness is when you pour a ladle of the pradhaman on a plate and draw a line it should not join immediately.

Tasting just one spoon of the luscious pradhaman will make you forget all the work that went into it.