Tuesday, December 15, 2009

CAFE TAPAS

This is the new boutique cafe recently opened in Velachery..a good thing to happen because on this road there was not a single eating joint where one could sit in comfort and enjoy.

They have given the deco of ecofriendly place..some walls are lined with bamboos, some lovely jute bags in their selling section..yes they have a few things to buy also. Seating is also good, not cramped, the only thing is tables are a little small.

Here one gets hot and cold coffees, shakes, smoothies juices and soups in drinks....Rs.40-65

Pizza, chaat, sandwiches,burger and salad for the main course.....Rs 35-99/--

Pastries in the dessert.

They have a NIrvana ...its a combo meal of..soup/salad......chat/burger/sandwich......smoothi/shake for 99/--only and
For children..chaat and smoothie....It is either for 35 or 55...I forgot:)

We ordered..Pizza Indiana.....it had a topping of paneer, onion and capsicum, I liked it.
Coffee was also very good , then pastry with hot choclate and cream was .just yummy.

Service is good with a smile.....place is worth a dekko,
The only thing I missed was that they should have icecream sundaes..I love them the most as a dessert or as it is..I am happy that now we have a neat and nice place in Velachery itself.

PS: In my next trip I tried cheese toasts and just loved them:) and cold coffee is also very good..so creamy..worth it.

CAFE TAPAS

47 B,Velachery Main Road
Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600042
098 40129493

Monday, November 23, 2009

WOODLANDS

When we went to shopping in Tnagar,we werelooking for a spotto have some food,and when I saw woodlands board,I thought thatnothing better than this,it is just next to Nallis.

But we were highly disappointed with everything..ambiance is sort of dingy type,no emphasis on cleanliness or hygiene.The glasses they serve water in,look so dirty,and when the waiter brought lassi..it was dripping from all sides.Their menu is Ok,it is a multi cuisine, but their rates are higher than Sarvana or equal in some,but nowhere near them in presentation or service.Though tea was very good in taste,but I felt appalled at their dirty and dark ambiance,crockery and cutlery.

Service..bad
Rates..high
ambiance..dark and dingy
Food...good

Nageshwara Rao Road, Panagal Park
T. Nagar
Chennai -600017

044-24346627

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

CAFE TAPAS

This is the new boutique cafe recently opened in Velachery..a good thing to happen because on this road there was not a single eating joint where one could sit in comfort and enjoy.

They have given the deco of ecofriendly place..some walls are lined with bamboos, some lovely jute bags in their selling section..yes they have a few things to buy also. Seating is also good, not cramped, the only thing is tables are a little small.

Here one gets hot and cold coffees, shakes, smoothies juices and soups in drinks....Rs.40-65

Pizza, chaat, sandwiches,burger and salad for the main course.....Rs 35-99/--

Pastries in the dessert.

They have a NIrvana ...its a combo meal of..soup/salad......chat/burger/sandwich......smoothi/shake for 99/--only and
For children..chaat and smoothie....It is either for 35 or 55...I forgot:)

We ordered..Pizza Indiana.....it had a topping of paneer, onion and capsicum, I liked it.
Coffee was also very good , then pastry with hot choclate and cream was .just yummy.

Service is good with a smile.....place is worth a dekko,
The only thing I missed was that they should have icecream sundaes..I love them the most as a dessert or as it is..I am happy that now we have a net and nice lace in Velachery itself.

TAPAS CAFE

47 B,Velachery Main Road
Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600042
098 40129493

Sunday, October 18, 2009

BESAN COCONUT BARFI

This Diwali I made besan( gram flour) and coconut Barfi, and everyone loved it, so thought of posting it but i forgot to take the picture, so i am writing the recipe will post the picture next time whenevr i make it.

Ingredients.....


2cups gram flour
2cups grated coconut
1 cup khoya (mawa)
2 and half cup sugar
1 and half cup water
half cup desi ghee

Roast the gram flour with ghee o0n a medium firt and then low heat....when it starts leaving the sides take it off.
Roast the coconut a little and keep it aside
Roast the khoya a little on a very low heat and keep it aside.
Now in a pan take sugar and water and make syrup of 3-4 consistency....to chk it take alittle(be caustious as its very hot) betweween your fore finger and thumb and seee that while stretching how many threads you see..its a thick consistency....then put all the things and take it off the heat and mix quickly thoroughly..... and shift it to a greased plate....and let it cool
Then cut into the pieces.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Ambode



Quantity: Approx 10-15

What you'll need:
1/4 cup chana dal
1/8 cup chopped onion
2 tbsp chopped cilantro
1 tsp grated ginger
1-1.5 tbsp chopped green chillies
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying
Method
  1. Soak the chana dal overnight in sufficient water.
  2. Grind the dal with as minimum water as possible. The final texture should be coarse, there maybe a few whole grains left. The more you churn the batter, the more fluffy the vada will be which we don't want.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients to the batter and mix well.
  4. Heat oil in a fry pan (for deep frying the vadas). Initially keep it at high flame so that the oil gets heated quickly, once the oil is hot reduce the flame to med-high.
  5. Take a heaped tbsp of batter in your paln, pat it a little to form a small disc and drop it in the oil. Fry them well so that the dal inside gets cooked properly. Each vada may take around 3-4 minutes. While frying turn over the vada when one side is done to let the other side cook. Remove when they're slightly dark brown.

Notes:

  1. Batter should not be fine-grained, it should be coarse.
  2. Don't worry if you'd to add a little extra water to grind, squeeze the extra water before dropping the vada into the oil.
  3. Fry the vadas patiently on a medium-high flame. If cooked on a high flame, they will become brown from outside but will not cook inside. If you're cooking a lot of vadas and you think the oil has cooled down a little, then increase the heat to high for sometime till the oil regains it's temperature.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

INFLUENCE


ENTRY

This is a new multicuisine restaurant designer in Chennai, owned by Manish Malhotra
. As soon as I came to know about it and read that even Waiters wear Manish Malhotra there, Iw as so curious to see it. Yesterday we thought of dining there. This is in Egmore near Dasprakash. It must be the first restaurant where the outer wall is completely transprent glass. Restaurant is on forst floor.
Entrance is wow with all that pink roses in water and then seating is very spacious.I just loved it..its comfortable, good to look and with sufficient privacy.
Now the food..they have north Indian food and pasta and pizza also. For a couple they have a package wherein you can get two soup, two starter, four main course and 2 desserts for 699/--only.

We started with golden tomato soup with saffron cream......it was yummy, this is the first time I liked soup outside, otherwise I dont ever take it outside..perfect creamy. served it a bread stick.

In the starters we chose.. dahi ware kabab and paneer tikka.....they are served in a long plate with green chatney....Kabab were delicious and my H liked even tikka also, and I really tasted this type of green chatney after a long time.

In the main course we had....vegetable khurchan and lawabdar paneer with alu kulcha and paneer kulcha...This is the first time in chennai where he brought green chatney, papad( rolled beautifully in cones), onion rings and pickle with the food.
Both the vegetables were good. For me Khurchan was a little spicy, as I love bland food. Paneer was very tasty and sowere the kulchas.

In desserts we took..Kulfi and gulab jamun with icecream.
Kulfi was more like Rabri,and tasy, icecream was just ok but gulabjamun was very good.

I know that we are going to frequent it very often.

Ambiance...Good because here most of the restaurants are cramped, and here even cutlery is very special.

Service....is good with a smile.

Food.....very good

Rates..I think very reasonable, if taken a.la carte..soups for 65/- main course..95/..and mocktails 95/--, for us quantity was more than sufficient, as we had to leave half of the vegetable, but otherwise its ok.

But for the witers wear..I was expecting something different..something in Manish Malhotra style, but was dissappointed, nothing special, I didnt like even, would have prefered if he had given some traditional wear with a different syle to their uniforms..here waiter were wearing black shirt and trouser with a little embroidery and other staff beige and black...both looking very drab and dull.
INFLUENCE
91,PONAMALLE HIGH ROAD
EGMORE
CHENNAI

It is closed now.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Eggless banana bread

This recipe is courtesy my daughter, i have included her in my team:) for this blog, She is very fond of cooking or should I say working:)..
Read it in her words.......
I got this recipe from Cook With Love and must say this was my best experience with a recipe tried for the first time! The banana bread came out perfect, in fact DH and I kept comparing it to the Banana Walnut loaf that Starbucks sells . Believe me, it WAS that good!
The crust has a slight crisp texture and the inside was soft and moist! Since I had 2 bananas, I scaled the recipe to 2/3rd and that seemed to suffice for 2+ persons.

Ingredients

1 cup sugar
3 bananas
4 tbsp melted unsalted butter
2 tbsp yogurt
1 and 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional), I’d 1/4 cup and that seemed fine.

Method

Pre Heat oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit
Mash the bananas.
Add sugar and yogurt to it.
Add butter, salt, and flour. Mix well.
Add Baking Soda, milk, vanilla essence and walnuts. Stir till everything is well blended.
Pour this batter in a greased bread tin and bake for about 50-60 minutes or till a tooth pick inserted comes out dry.

Monday, April 20, 2009

RANGOLI

This is the restaurant from Sarvanas, and I read everybody appreciating it so much at Swarna's Chennai Foodie, that it was on my list for long. This Sunday we decided to give it a Dekko.
I dont why restaurants have such strict timings like we reached there at 7PM as we dont want to get late and we had to wait there for 25 minutes, as they open it at 7.30 only for dinner. Its gujarati and rajasthani cuisine restaurant.

We ordered Thali.
So they started with jaljeera and in the starters we had..dhokla, gatta fried type, small khasta kachori with green and sweet chatney.....everything was so yummy and mouth watering and I wanted to fill myself with that only but then thought if starters are so good what the meal would be:)

In the main course we had..curd, gatte ki sabji, daal baati(I didnt get any baati in my daal), kadhi, beans, paneer curry, and poli, poori, chapati and rice and khichdi.salad----In this section except poli, I didnt like anything much, For me it was spicy

In dessert..they served mal pua and custard......custard was very hopeless, I am yet to see in any restaurant good custard, I think they shouldnt serve it, better to serve a gulabjamun or something like that.....malpua was good

Then they served paan:)

The ambiance was good, seating spacious--I dont like sitting too close to another table or if someone moves and touches other's table.

Service was Ok ,cant say very good because the waiter never notices my empty glass to fill water.

Serving are very good in quantity.

Prices are very easy on the pocket, it was 180/+ taxes per person.

RANGOLI RESTAURANT
102
T Nagar, Chennai, Tamilnadu 600017
044 28154662

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

SABUDANA BADA

Now.a days navratri is going on, so we fast for all the days and take some different food, sabudana bada is one of them, i forgot to take the photo but I am writing the recipe.

Ingredients:

1 cup sago or sabudana--soak in 3 cup water for 1 hour

300 gm Potatoes

2 green chilli

1 inch ginger piece

salt

red chilli powder

2 tbsp peanut..roasted.

oil for shallow frying

curd and green chatney and tamarind chatney

Boil the potatoes and mash them or grate them.

Squeeze the water out of sago.

Chop the green chillies and ginger finely.

Pound the peanuts coarsely.

Mix......sago, potatoes, green chillies, ginger,peanuts, and add salt and red chilli powder to taste.

Now make flat tikkis...make balls and flatten them .

They can be either deep fried or shallow fry as you want, both ways tasty.

Serve them either with green chatney only or like Chaat...spread curd, and both the chatneys.

Monday, March 16, 2009

VEGETABLE OMLETTE









This is the favourite dish of my family for breakfast. Very easily prepared , and the ingredients are also almost all the time available at home. its a complete food with all the nutrients....protein( gram flour) and vitamins (vegetables).

Ingredients:-----

Gram flour(besan) 250 gm.

1 carrot grated

1 radish grated

a bunch of spinach leaves chopped finely.

2 green chilli finely chopped.

salt to taste.

oil to saute or shallow fry

make a thick batter of gram flour adding water.

Add al the ingredients..now it must be of flowing consistency.

Now heat a tawa or pan.

Spread 1 tsp. oil

and spread 2 tbsp. batter at a time . shallow fry it just like Dosa, but both the sides.

Enjoy it with curd and chatney.

As a variation you may add any other vegetable also, like cabbage, onions.

For making it more nutritious for kids, you may mix the fortified flour..multi grain flour....make it 50-50





Omelet on Foodista

Sunday, March 1, 2009

NAMKEEN DALIA


This is a very healthy breakfast for me and I like it also, almost no oil is used and it has lots of vegetables. and not much cooking even.

Ingredients:-----

1cup broken wheat

250 gm cabbage..julienned

1small capsicum..julienned

1 carrot grated

1 tsp. oil
1tsp. mustard seeds.

1/2 tsp. turmeric

1/2 tsp salt or as you like it

1/2 lemon

2 tbsp. roasted peanuts.

Green chilli(optional)

coriander leaves..finely chopped for garnishing.

Dry roast the broken wheat, till it is golden.

In a pan put oil, and when it is hot add mustard seeds.

When they start spluttering add all the vegetables.

saute them for 5-8 minutes, till they get shiny or loose water.

Keep them aside.

Now cook the broken wheat with 2 cup water, turmeric and salt, slow the fire and cook till all the water is absorbed.

Mix the vegetables in this.

Now while serving spread some peanuts and then sprinkle lemon.
TIPS:.....even you can roast the wheat in microwave also, you will have to stir it once or twice.
Some people add tomatoes also, but I dont because my H doesnt like them in this:)

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Rain Forest









When I heard that in Chennai, there is a theme restaurant...RAIN FOREST, I got curious to see it. I have seen Rain forest in Atlantic City and there ambiance and food both were very good.

So This Sunday we tried our Indian Rain forest...It is in Adyar on the main road only. They open it at &pm only, we were there early, so strolled around for 20 minutes, but it was good, because then we got a table, later on there was a waiting period of 45 minutes.

from the entrance onward, the ambiance is of Jungle..lighting, fountain, animals hanging here and there and even the waiters and waitresses all were dressed in animal prints
Since whenever we go to dine out, we normally prefer to order north Indian fare. So we ordered...tomato cream soup,masala papad, palak paneer,masala kulcha and pudina parantha. Except for pudina parantha, none of the preparations were good, as they all were prepared with garlic flavour which we dont like at all. The quantity they served was too much ,in fact so much that we couldnt order much variety, but it was not as delicious as it should have been.

They serve chinese and Indian veg and nonveg both.

so Ambiance......good

Rates..very reasonable.

Food.....just OK

Service....prompt

but there is not much of the privacy, as the waiters keep standing there.....This style, i just dont like in the restaurants of the office bearers standing on your head, i prefer them to take their orders and vanish discreetly.

Here is the venue......

No. 41 & 42, 1st Main Road,

Gandhi Nagar Adyar, Chennai,

Tamil Nadu 600020

044 42187777

Sunday, February 8, 2009

FRENCH LOAF

Though we have been getting the pastries and cake from this place for a long time, its only yesterday that I went inside. its a nice place with cafe ambiance..air conditioned and clean.
The pastries there are the best I have tasted..so yummy, specially the pineapple ones, they have chocolate, black forest, then little tarts and doughnuts.and of course the breads.
The variety is sufficient for a full meal even...coffees and tea for drinks., sandwiches for the main dish and delicious desserts, we tried vegetable club sandwiches..were superb, both in presentation and taste .
Prices are moderate........around 50/- to 60/- for every sandwiches and coffee and 35/for a pastry(8-2-09) and place is worth a dekko:)
It is below the naihu hall
Plot No 183 New Naidu Hall Door No 137 Ground Floor,
Bye Pass Road, Velacheri,
Chennai - 600042
044-42325103,
044-22552499
-9840366037,

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Starter snack




For serving as starters before dinner or even as a snack with tea its a tasty accompaniment.Its a non fried tasty snacking.



Ingredients
200gm peanuts---roasted----normally if you put them in microwave at high for 3 minutes, shaking them once in between-----they are well done.
2 tomatoes finely chopped
1onion finely chopped
3 green chillies finely chopped
half cup cucumber finely chopped.
2-3 tbsp. green coriander-finely chopped
1lemon
salt to taste
just before serving mix everything together and the sprinkle the lemon juice and serve it garnished with green coriander. its a very tasty, crunchy snack. In the garnishing you may add Bhujia also.



I'm sending this to "Let's go NUTS!", hosted by aquadaze!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

UPMA


I make Upma once a week in breakfast, i learned it from a north India friend who was very good in cooking, then improvised it with a maharshtrian friend. Actually I dont know Upma belongs to which region..maharashtra or south, but i like it as its a healthy breakfast, though i dont put the same quantity of oil one sees in the restaurants.


Ingredients:
one and half cup semolina
4 cups water
1 tsp mustard seeds
3 greenn chillies split
salt to taste(half tsp. for me)
5 french beans..chopped very finely
1small carrot..chopped finely
1 onion..chopped..optional( I dont use it)
1tbsp. roasted chana daal
few curry leaves
oil 4 tsp.
juice of one lemon
Take a pan, and roast the semolina on medium fire for 4 minutes., then take it off.
Now in the pan, put 1 tsp. oil, heat it.
add mustard seeds and when they start splitting add chana dal and roast till it is light brown.
Add curry leaves and green chilli and stir
add the vegetables and stir for 2 minutes.
Now add water.
Add salt, rest of the oil and juice of one lemon. and let it boil.
When it is boiling , slow the fire and add roasted semolina, stirring all the time, till the mixture is smooth.
Now cook for one minute and its ready.
You may garnish it with chopped coriander leaves and fried cashewnuts.
we enjoy this as it is or sometimes with pickle.
Tips......onion and tomato are optional, if you like them then add onion before curry leaves and tomato with the vegetables.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Shahi Paneer & Missi roti


Paneer is the most favourite dish for most of the north indians, rather mandatory for any festival or guest lunch or dinner. Paneer can be made with so many varieties, this is the speciality of my sister who stays in Lucknow. She makes it real yummy and this time I learned it, so friends here it is........

For Shahi Paneer,

4 medium sized onions
1/2 tsp ginger chopped
2 big tomatoes.
6-8 cashew nuts
1 cup fresh milk
2 tsp. kitchen king (MDH)
1/2 tsp. garam masala
1 tsp. coriander powder,
1tsp. turmeric powder
salt to taste
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
2 tbsp oil.
Cut the paneer in cubes and keep aside (here we have fried it because my nephew like it this way, but its very tasty without frying also)
Grind the onions. & ginger together
Put the oil in pan and add the onion paste and ginger and saute it.
grind tomatoes and cashewnuts together.
When onions become golden brown add tomato and cashewnuts paste and saute it
then add all the spices and stir it for 1 min.
then add milk and let it simmer for 5 minutes on fire
now add paneer and simmer for another 3-4 minutes.
garnish it with chopped fresh coriander leaves.


Missi Roti
1cup wheat flour
1cup gram flour(besan)
salt to taste.1 onion finely chopped
2 tbsp green coriander finely chopped.
Mix. all the ingredients and make a dough adding very little water at a time.
Dough must not be very soft, as then it will be dififcult to roll into chapatis.
now make small chapatis with this dough and serve with a dollop of butter or desi ghee and shahi paneer.