Thursday, October 23, 2014

Pudina thogayal / Mint thogayal (Mint chutney)

Mint has a very distinct flavour compared to coriander leaves or cilantro, which is a staple herb in every Indian kitchen.
In the part of the world were we live, we don't get mint that commonly in the market as we find the other herbs. So we tend to use it rarely and only when its an unavoidable ingredient .like say for Biriyani. I would say mint flavour is the heart of a tasty chicken biriyani...
But luckily, the place we stayed earlier, we had a abundant mint supply in the backyard itself. After months long of dead winter, one fine day i would wake up to see this surprising new sprigs of mint. The first time I saw it, i was totally taken aback.really, how did it survive this severe winter and snow. I used to have a lot of them that I could share a bunch every now and then with my friends too.Our house used to smell heavenly when we cut a fresh bunch of them.

Because of limited availability, my options with mint were also limited, say in biriyani and this mint chutney occasionally.
Now since I had this surplus mint supply, went out looking for more ways to use it.
And found a delicious thogayal (chutney like paste) at rakskitchen. My mom had made it a couple of times earlier and I had liked it then. So thought of giving it a try. And it is good. I like the tang of this thogayal. It refreshes you :)
Easy to put together, a very few ingredients too
Goes well with Idli, dosa, also as a condiment with rice.
Can be used to dress up a plain old cracker or a toast too, more like a spread.

Pudina thogayal / Mint thogayal (Mint chutney)

Published 10/23/2014
Adapted from here


  • Mint leaves: I cup (tightly packed)
  • Whole red chillies: 10-12 nos
  • Urad daal: 2 tbsp
  • Grated coconut: 2 tbsp
  • Tamarind: a small piece (in size of a gooseberry)/ 1/2 tsp, if using paste
  • Jaggery: 1 tsp
  • Salt: 1 1/2 tsp


  1. Place a nonstick pan on medium heat and dry roast whole chillies and urad daal until it turns golden brown.
  2. Add the mint leaves and tamarind and cook for a minute, until the leaves wilt and reduce in volume.
  3. Let the mixture cool down, once cooled, grind it into a smooth paste along with grated coconut, jaggery and salt.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Chunky Peach preserve

Ok, let me not start with my usual lame excuses for not updating this space for quite a long long time.
Because I don't have any good one expect for the fact that I was lazy. there you go.. i said it.
You call it writers block, lack of mojjo or whatever, I say its plain old laziness.

So now you would be wondering why I am writing this post....hmmm
A few days back my dear hubby was telling me, "Failure to plan is planning to fail".
C'mon, its me who get to use all the "quotes" in this house.( of course on him ;) ) men men
And for the first time he got to use one on me...oh no! it felt like one tight slap
Any way, I hope I will post more frequently here after....I have least to save my face

Its always towards the end of summer I get the urge to utilize the abundant supply of stone fruits that summer offers and preserve them for the rest of the year. I guess, one reason for that is, I don't want to let go of the summer...and also because I find it really hard to embrace fall n winter...yeah I hate cold weather and all that comes with it....The very sight of peaches, plums, nectarines all their cousins on the fruit stand in the farmers market makes my day. its such a visual treat..I love summer and all these yummy fruits. 

This peach preserve is a very versatile thing..can be used in a cake, or in a pie or use as a topping in any kind of pudding desserts,ice creams or simply just spread it on your Sunday morning toast and enjoy :)

Chunky peach preserve

Published 10/21/2014


  • Peaches: 3 lbs (ripe and firm ones)
  • Sugar: (5 cups)*
  • Lemon juice: 2/3 cup


  1. Wash and dry the fruits and cut a X on the rounded edge.Bring a large pot of water to boil and add the peaches to it, a few at a time and blanch them for 30 sec.
  2. Transfer to a bowl of ice water immediately to stop cooking. Let it cool, once cooled peel them from the X cut we made.
  3. Cut each peach into 6-8 wedges and each wedge into 3 pieces. Put them in a large bowl and add sugar and lemon juice and mix well. Let it stand for a few hours or even overnight, stirring it 2 -3 times in between until the sugar dissolves completely.
  4. Transfer the mixture to a large pot and cook it on moderate heat for 25- 30 min , until the syrup thickens and the peaches become soft.Skim off any white films that collects on the surface while cooking.
  5. Let cool the mixture, cover and let it rest overnight. Drain the fruits from the mixture using a sieve and set aside. Bring back the syrup to a boil on moderate heat for a few minutes, until it reaches the jam like consistency. To check the consistency, pour a spoonful of the syrup in a chilled plate and wait for a couple of minutes to cool down. If it thickens to a jam like consistency, you have got it rite.
  6. Add back the drained fruit pieces to the syrup and mix it all together and cook for a couple more minutes.
  7. Remove from the heat, let it cool and transfer to jars and wipe the rims with clean cloth. Crack open the lid until it cools down completely. Once completely cooled, tighten the lids and store in a cool place.

*I used only 4 cups of sugar in mine, because I like things less sweet. Adjust it to your sweet tooth level by tasting the mixture.

P.S: I leave mine in the pantry and it stays fresh for almost a year. You can also refrigerate it, if you want to keep it longer

And I'll see you all soon....i'm not kidding ;)

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