Pavakaai (Bittergourd) thokku


2 medium sized bittergourd chopped
1 small onion chopped
2 tsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
Salt to taste
1/2 tsp tamarind paste
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp vangi bhath powder
Few curry leaves

Heat oil and add mustard seeds. When it splutters add curry leaves and onions. Fry for a minute and add the chopped bittergourd and enough water to cook. When it becomes soft, add turmeric powder, tamarind paste, vangi bhath powder and salt. If there is no water left, add a little more water to it and allow it to boil for 2-3 minutes.

Cool and serve with rice or rotis.

Sending over Kozhakattai, Sundal and Semiya payasam to Divya for her for her Global Ganesha DLC Food festival

This time for ganesh chaturthi, tried out kozhakattais for the first time...they came out really nice. I followed the recipe given by Viji.

For Kozhakattai (Modak)

1 cup raw rice
A pinch of salt
2 tbsp milk

For coconut filling

1 cup grated coconut
3/4 cup jaggery
1/2 tsp cardamom powder

For sesame seeds filling

1/2 cup roasted black sesame seeds
1/4 cup jaggery
1/4 tsp cardamom powder

Soak the rice for an hour in sufficient water. Drain out the water and grind to a fine paste with 1 cup of water. Heat one more cup of water in a vessel and add a pinch of salt and milk to it. When it starts boiling, add the rice paste and keep stirring on low flame for 15-20 minutes. To check if the dough is ready, spread a drop of oil on the palms and take a small ball of the dough. Knead well and roll out into a long thread. If it doesnt break, then the dough is cooked well and of the required consistency. Switch off the gas and cover it with a wet cloth and let it stay covered for an hour.

For the coconut filling, heat the jaggery with some water and when it starts boiling add the cardamom powder and grated coconut. Cook till it becomes one big lump. Cool and make small balls of it.

For the sesame seeds filling, grind the sesame seeds, cardamom powder and jaggery together. Make small balls of it.

Now make small cups of the rice dough and keep the desired filling inside. Now shape it into modak/kozhakattai. Repeat for the rest of the dough. Also you could make small rounds of the rice dough, spread the filling in half of it and cover it with the rest of the dough to get semi-circle shape.

Steam the kozhakattai for 5-8 minutes in the idli cooker. Cool a bit and serve Lord Ganesha's favourite prasadam.

For Sundal-


1 cup Chick Peas/Kabuli Chana (to be soaked in water overnight)(red or white chickpeas)
2 tsp of oil
1 tsp Coriander Seeds
2 tsp Bengalgram dal
2 tsp Blackgram dal
1 tsp of mustard seeds
1 Red Chilli
4 tbsp of grated coconut
Salt to taste
Few curry leaves

Pressure cook the soaked chick peas.

In a kadai, first roast 1 tsp of bengalgram dal, 1 tsp of black gram dal, red chilli and 1 tsp of coriander seeds. Grind it with coconut.

Now heat oil, add mustard seeds and the remaining 1 tsp of bengalgram dal and blackgram dal. Add the curry leaves and then the cooked chick peas. Dont throw away the water used to cook the chick peas. Add them also here and cook till the water is absorbed. Now add salt and the grinded masala paste.
Mix well and serve.

Semiya Payasam


1 cup vermicelli (semiya)
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup milk
Few Cashews
2 tbsp of ghee

First roast the cashews and vermicelli in ghee and when it starts turning brown, add 1 1/2 cups of water to it. Let it cook for five minutes.

Now add sugar to it and cook for 2 more minutes.

Let it cool a bit and then add the milk to it.
Serve hot or after refrigeration.

Check out the review of Indian Vegetarian Cooking by Devagi Sanmugam sent in by Sudha of Malaysian Delicacies at her blog and also at Cookbook Reviews

how to make bittergourd, karela gojju recipe, recipe variety with bittergourd


chakhlere said...

Looks a yummy tangy dish!!

bindiya said...

With Tamarind, this must be really yum!

Anonymous said...

i like pavakka dishes.but wat is vangi bhathpdr?

Hari Chandana said...

Woww.. looks tempting.. very innovative.. u rock :)

Anonymous said...

thanks for reposting the picture for DLC, please also copy paste the recipes of kozhakattai, sundal and payasam in this page itself...

EC said...

Thanks all of you..

@ Sangi..Please refer for vangi bhath powder recipe

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Simple Indian food blog (author- EC) is the legal copyright holder of the material and pictures in this blog and it may not be used, reprinted, or published without the written consent of the author. All the measures used in the recipes are approximate. Please adjust the spices as per your taste. For any queries, please email us at