Here are some pureed baby food ideas. What are some other ones you’ve made that you recommend?
Some mornings, you need something to just grab and go. I made these last night and left them in the fridge because I knew I probably wouldn’t get time in the morning. These are made with oatmeal, toasted coconut, chocolate chips, peanut butter, honey, flax seeds and almonds. #energybites #snacks #foodphotography #foodblogger #foodie #sweets #breakfast #instagood #instafood
Here’s the recipe:
- Oatmeal, 1 cup of raw steel cut oats (don't use flavoured oats)
- Toasted coconut, half a cup (preferably unsweetened)
- Chocolate chips, half a cup
- Peanut butter, 2/3 a cup
- Honey, half-2/3 a cup
- Flax seeds, ground to a powder, quarter cup
- Almonds, crushed finely or powdered, quarter cup (I used powdered)
- Vanilla extract - 3 tablespoons
- Mix all the above and let it sit for about 10 minutes.
- The consistency should be that it mixes well and can hold, if needed, you can add more peanut butter to help the hold.
- Make little round balls with the mix.
- Sprinkle some more toasted coconut flakes on them.
- Put it in the fridge for at least 15-20 minutes before serving. (After you can just keep it in the ridge and take them out when you're ready to eat them).
These cold winter days call for some warm milk with saffron threads. Saffron is the world’s most expensive spice. It has various healing properties, including helping to cleanse the blood and increase circulation. It also has sedative properties that help you relax, therefore, is consumed widely as a sleep aid. Saffron is also said to improve skin smoothness, blood pressure and memory. If you are looking for a goodnight’s sleep, make a glass of this milk, put on some warm socks, get a good book to read and head to bed. You will sleep very well.
In Tamil medicine, it is advised that pregnant women consume this to help blood circulation, control blood pressure and helping with mood swings. There are old wives tale saying this will increase the fairness of the baby, but that is completely false; saffron doesn’t play a role in the fairness of the baby, and neither should the fairness of the baby be of concern. You should also not consume this in excess during pregnancy because it can bring on uterine contractions. You should always consult a doctor before consuming anything new, especially during pregnancy and if you have other health concerns.
You can also add some lump sugar, crushed almonds and turmeric powder to this. Almond helps make this drink sweet. Make sure you brush your teeth an hour or so after so that you don’t go to sleep with yellow teeth!
- Milk - 1 cup
- Saffron threads - a pinch
- Turmeric powder (optional) - a pinch
- Almonds, crushed (2 tablespoons)
- Lump or rock sugar - to taste
- Warm milk on the stove, just until you know it will boil over.
- Add a pinch of saffron threads and stir.
- You can also alternatively add lump rock sugar, a pinch of turmeric powder and some crushed almonds if you like.
- Let it cool slightly to a temperature you are comfortable with and enjoy!
Idiyappam and Katharikai Poriyal (stringhoppers and fried eggplant) Sometimes it’s the simple dishes that taste the best #eelamflavour #homecooking#tamilfood #brunch #spices #instagood #instafood#foodie #chefsofinstagram #tamil #foodlover#foodblogger #foodblog
I wish you all a Happy Thai Pongal and Tamil New Year! Pongal is a Tamil harvest festival where thanks are given to nature, the Sun and farm cattle for providing grain and harvest. This year, it is celebrated on January 14th.
Traditionally, farmers also harvest their new crops for the year this day, including rice, sugar cane and turmeric. Farmers also honour the cattle the next day, for Maatu Pongal, where they give their cows a bath and adorn it. Pongal is not a religious festival, it is a cultural festival, therefore, Tamils of all faith participate in the celebrations.
The etymology of Thai Pongal can be traced to the meaning of its root words “pong” and “thai,” which mean “to boil” and “January” in Tamil. Thai Pongal marks the first day of a new year, and a new month of the Tamil calendar.
A special dish of Pongal is made to celebrate (what is a festival celebration without food, right!) Pongal is made with a pot of rice, milk and jaggery. You let this dish boil until it boils over the pot, in belief that doing so will result in a bountiful year. Other dishes are prepared in addition, including vadai, aval and kadalai.
If you grew up in a Tamil household, you probably heard the phrase “Thai piranthaal, vali pirakum;” many believe that with the onset of a New Year, better pathways and beginnings will follow. Traditionally, as the Tamil society has largely been an agrarian society, many weddings were held in January, as families were able to bear the expenses of a wedding. Nowadays, with migration, this has changed, and weddings are held throughout the year.
Here’s a recipe for Pongal. I hope you celebrate by giving thanks and making a dish of Pongal and other tasty treats!
- You can adjust the quantities if you are making more.
- Rice - 1/2 cup
- Jaggery - 1/2 cup (or more if you like your pongal to be sweeter)
- Pasi paruppu (Moong dal) - 2-3 tablespoons
- Nei (Ghee) - 2 tablespoons
- Cardamon - 3-4 made into a powder or use cardamon powder
- Cashews and raisins - 1-3 tablespoons
- Saffron - to garnish
- Salt - to cook rice
- Milk - 1/4 cup
- In a pan or pressure cooker, roast the pasi parrupu until it begins to brown.
- Add 2 1/2 cups of water, washed rice and let it cook until it becomes soft.
- In a separate pan, melt the jaggery into a liquid. Melt it on low heat so not to burn it.
- Mash the rice, which should be soft.
- Strain the jaggery liquid and add it to the mashed rice.
- Add the cardamon powder and milk and let it cook for another 5 minutes. (Check the pot to make sure it does not burn, you don't want burnt pongal!)
- In a separate pan, fry the raisins and cashews in ghee.
- Remove from pan when it is golden brown and add this to the pongal and mix. Leave some aside to garnish the top.
- Garnish with saffron, cashews and raisins.
- The colour of your jaggery will determine the colour of your pongal. The more and darker jaggery you use, the darker your pongal will be.
- You can adjust the water and milk quantities if you need to get a soft pongal and prevent burning as everyones stove cooks slightly different depending on the pot you are using.
- You can add grated coconut also for flavour.
Drinking barley is highly beneficial and has been used in a variety of cultures for many, many years. Ayurvedic medicine also recommends the use of barley water to treat a variety of ailments.
Aids in controlling diabetes
Flushes out toxins
Cools the body (especially in the summers)
Aids in managing and treating urinary tract infections
Helps smoothen skin
You can drink this either warm or cold, but I highly recommend drinking it cold. I find that if you drink it warm with nothing added, it literally tastes like nothing. I find that if you just make some of this, add some salt and lemon juice to it and drink it throughout the day, its easy to incorporate into your everyday routine. Plus, you can save the barley and use it in soups or spice it up and eat it for breakfast as you would oatmeal. (Alternatively, you can just eat it with curry).
- You'll need about 2-3 cups of water for every half cup of barley you use.
- Boil the barley until it is fully cooked through in water.
- If you are drinking it warm, strain the water from the barley and drink this once a day.
- If you are drinking it cold, let it cool down, add some salt to taste and a squeeze of lemon and drink at room temperature once a day.
Warming up with some warm ulutham kali. This is very high in protein and fiber, low in fat, and said to be highly nutritious by Tamil grandmas. 🙂 I’ll post the recipe this week. #eelamflavour #eelam #tamil#tamilcooking #tamilfood #healthyeating#chefsofinstagram #foodphotography #foodpics#foodie #instagood #instafood #yummy #protein
Idiyappam (string hoppers) and sothi are one of those matches made in food heaven. My mom visited and brought me some idiyappam and fish curry. But since I had lots of the idiyappam left, I decided to make a paal sothi to go with it. My mother-in-law tells me that back home, many people eat idiyappam and sothi for breakfast. She said breakfast is always an important meal as it starts your day, so she use to always make idiyappam or puttu in the mornings.
Paal sothi is very simple and quick to make, but has such a comforting flavour. It reminds me of warmth, especially on those cold winter nights when you want to wrap yourself in a blanket. There are very few spices in this recipes, yet, despite that this is full of flavour. You can adapt this to any way you like. I added kari milagai (santa fe peppers) to this, because I had some lying around, but that is not necessary.
- Fenugreek seeds - ¾ tablespoon
- Turmeric powder - ½ tablespoon
- Salt – to taste
- Shallots – 4-5
- 1 tomato – chopped
- 3 tablespoons coconut milk powder
- ½ cup milk
- 3-4 green chillies slit lengthwise
- Curry leaves – 5-6
- Water – 2 cups
- Heat oil in a pan and fry the fenugreek seeds and cut shallots.
- Add the chillies, curry leaves and fry for a minute longer, but stir to prevent burning.
- Add the chopped tomato, turmeric powder and 2 cups of water and let everything boil. I also added the santa fe peppers at this time. Once the tomato has been cooked halfway, add the salt and coconut milk powder.
- Add the milk at last, adjust for salt. Do not let the milk boil. It will cook in the residual heat.
- Serve warm with rice, puttu or idiyappam.
Eggs are the perfect filling meal. This was a quick recipe to make, but very spicy. For this, I added 4 eggs. If you are just making it for yourself, you can halve all the ingredients. What adds the flavour to this is the cumin powder – make sure you use cumin powder and not cumin seeds and ensure that all the ingredients are all well mixed together before adding it to the hot pan.
I ate this with yogurt as a dip, and it really helped to balance the hot and spicy flavours.
Here you can see all the ingredients being mixed.
- Eggs - 4
- Shallots - 8-10
- Green chillies - 1.5
- Spinach - a handful
- Curry leaves - 5-6
- Salt - to taste
- Turmeric powder - half a tablespoon
- Jaffna curry powder - half a tablespoon
- Cumin powder - half - 3/4 a tablespoon
- Ground peppercorns - ground about 5 peppercorns
- Mustard seeds - 1/4 tablespoon
- Baking powder - a pinch
- Oil - to heat pan
- Cut up the shallots, green chillies, spinach and curry leaves finely. You can adjust how many green chillies depending on your heat level. I used one and a half large chillies from my mother's garden, which will make it pretty spicy.
- In a bowl, mix together the salt, turmeric powder, Jaffna curry powder, chilli powder, cumin powder (use powder not whole) and ground peppercorns with the shallots, chillies, spinach and curry leaves.
- Add eggs to this mixture and whisk together. Add a tiny bit of baking soda powder to help the eggs become fluffy and rise.
- Heat oil in a pan, add a few mustard seeds, and when they pop add the mixture to the pan. Cook on each side for 2-3 minutes (or as long as you need until it cooks completely through) to preventing burning. This will depend on the size of your pan and how many eggs you added. I added a medium stir fry pan and 4 eggs. Cover with a lid for another minute then serve.
- Serve with plain white yogurt as a side dip to help balance the flavours - it tastes pretty good with this.