Salted Lassi is a 10 rupee (15 cents) drink that Indians love, particularly in the morning. You can find it at most breakfast bars around Bangalore. It is drunk as a refresher and is considered to have good health properties.
- 1/2 c. yogurt
- 2 tbs. fresh coriander
- 1 tsp. ginger, rough chopped
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- Put all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.
- Add about 2 cups water to dilute.
Makes about 3 cups
Note: This drink is definitely an acquired taste. The salt makes it tart, the ginger pretty strong and the overall texture something not quite like a smoothy, but also not milk. I’m afraid neither one of us enjoyed it much.
Bangalore is a multicultural city with people from many parts of the country and the world. There is also diversity in language, religion and ethnicity. In particular Bangalore is known for big breakfasts and spicy foods. Here are examples of the kinds of cuisines from around Karnataka, our Indian state, which can be found here in Bangalore:
- South Indian Breakfasts – major hotels have huge spreads of many different cuisines, but an authentic Southern Indian breakfast might include:
- idli – fermented steamed cake. Very white with not a ton of flavor on its own, but good with different chutneys.
- Vada – savory fritter. I guess anything deep fried is good and at least worth trying. I’ve found them to be a bit doughy though.
- dosas – savory pancakes. Now we are talking. The thin pancakes resemble crepes, but are made from rice and beans (although you wouldn’t know it to taste them) and can be filled with all many things like masala dosa (a potato curry mixture that is delicious).
- other things include set dosa (fermented savory pancake), bisl bele bath (rice, lentil, vegetables), pongal (savory rice and lentil), uppittu (semolina porridge), avalaki (flattened rish), rava idli (steamed semolina cake), pesarattu (green gram crepe), idlyappa (string hopper), appam (fluffy pancake) and puttu (steamed rice cake).
- Chettinad Cuisine – Chettinad is a region in Tamil Nadu, home of a large and successful trading community. They use many spices and the food is hot.
- dosas (savory pancakes), appams (fluffy pancakes) or idlies (fermented steamed cakes) are used to offset the spiciness of
- pepper chicken, lamb varuval (dry curry) or kothu paratha (minced meat dish and bread)
- Kerala Cuisine – Kerala is on the southwest coast of India thus fish is a big part of the menu.
- puttu and karla curry (steamed rice cake with chickpeas curry)
- idli (fermented steamed cake)
- pidiyan (rice dumpling)
- Andhra Cuisine – Very cool because a traditional meal is served on a fresh banana leaf as a plate and fingers are used for eating. In the center of the leaf is a huge mound of white rice, usually with ghee (a kind of clarified butter that is everywhere). There might be a meat as well. Around the rice you’ll find many little dishes with:
- spicy pappulu podi (lentil-based condiment)
- pappu (lentils)
- vepudu (dry vegetables which means cooked vegetables, just not in a sauce)
- gojju (curries)
- pulusu (sour gravy)
- pappu chaaru (lentil broth)
- pachadi (chutney)
- rasam (soupy lentils)
- ooragaya (pickle)
- curd (yogurt)
- Coorg Cuisine – coffee country in South West Karnataka where Pandi Curry (pork) is a local speciality, but there are many different rice dish variations as well.
- akki roti (rice flour bread)
- puttus (steamed rice cakes)
- nei kool (rice dish)
- spicy rice dishes
- Coastal Cuisine – coastal Karnataka is far south and seafood specialities.
- Spicy coconut-based dishes with fish, prawns, clams and crabs
- kori roti (rice flour bread)
- neer dosa (rice pancakes
Just because I haven’t posted recently doesn’t mean we aren’t eating!
- 1 c. white rice
- 3 tbs. oil
- 1/2 c. beans, chopped
- 1/2 c. scallions, chopped
- 1/2 c. cauliflower, chopped
- 1/2 c. carrots, chopped
- 1/2 c. green peppers, chopped
- 1/2 lb. prawns
- 1 tsp. soy sauce
- 1 tsp. green chili sauce
- 1 tsp. tomato sauce
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. ground pepper
- Heat 1 tsp. oil in pressure cooker and then add rice and two cups of water. Close pressure cook and cook on medium heat for 3-4 pressure pops.
- Let pressure cooker cool.
- Heat large pan with oil.
- Add all the chopped vegetables and saute about five minutes or until vegetables have softened.
- Add prawns, soy sauce, green chili sauce, tomato sauce, salt and pepper and cook until prawns are just done.
- Add prawns and vegetables to rice. Mix and serve.
Makes 4 cups
When we first moved to India we went shopping for kitchen things. As with every country there are special foods and the pots and utensils have been made to suit the cuisine. You’ll recognize most of these items and will find in future posts how (and why) they are used.
Observation: I just learned watching Annette cook that when using a pressure cooker you use the number of times the pressure valve (at the top) pops as a unit of time measurement. Rice cooks in 3-4 pops, potatoes 3 pops, etc. And pressure cookers while sounding scary (they are just blowing off steam – literally!) are truly amazing at speeding up cooking times!
- Blender (with small chutney sized bowl)
- Marble rolling board and pin
You can see the size of this relative to my foot (nice nail polish, right?!). It is small, but quite heavy and cool so the perfect spot to roll the dough.
- Chapati pan (not edges) and flat wooden spatula
- Oil pot (this is pretty small, probably holds 1 cup and has a little ladle in it)
- Other special spoons – the ones on the left and center are general use and the spoon on the right for making dosas since it is more like a ladle, but flatter
- Metal bowls and covers – so simple and so useful but used for food mixing and storage
- 2 – 3 tbs. oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- 1/8 tsp. tumeric powder
- 2 small tomatoes, diced
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 4 eggs
- Heat oil in saute pan
- Add chopped onion, chili powder, tumeric, tomatoes and salt and cook for 10-15 minutes until very soft.
- Add eggs and mix vigorously to scramble them so there are no big pieces of yolk or egg whites.
- Cook for a few minutes until eggs are cooked through.
Makes about 1 1/2 cups
Observation: Tumeric is primarily used for coloring and to kills strong odors, in this case eggs!
Dinner (with Methi paratha and Chana)
Scrambled eggs with onions and tomatoes
Eggs just added