RSS Feed

Category Archives: peanut

Peanut and Tomato Chutney

Posted on

I dont know how or why, but I have unwittingly eliminated fresh coconut from my pantry for the last few months. We stopped adding it to the araichavittu sambhar and the assorted poriyals. but what i miss most is to dip my idli or dosa into some nice tangy spicy chutney. there is only so much of kaaram podi / milagai podi i can eat. So a few days ago, taking advantage of the extra tomatoes at home, I made this chutney. Its delicious and worth the effort of roasting all the ingredients before grinding.

Peanut and Tomato Chutney (makes 5 generous servings)

1/2 cup peanuts, roasted without oil till the colour changes

1 cup chopped tomatoes ( i used the local variety)

3 green chillies, slit

2 tablespoon curry leaves

2 tablespoons coriander leaves

1 medium onion, roughly chopped

1/2 teaspoon cumin (whole)

a few grains of whole fenugreek seeds

a small marble of tamarind

salt to taste

1/2 cup water

2 teaspoons oil ( i used gingely oil)

for the tadka

a few curry leaves

1/2 teaspoon whole mustard seeds

1-2 dried red chillies

1/2 teaspoon urad / black gram dal

in a pan, dry roast the peanuts and set aside. heat one teaspoon of oil, add the whole cumin seeds and fenugreek seeds and fry a few seconds.  add the onions and green chillies and fry till the onions are beginning to change colour. add the tomatoes and fry till they begin to shrink. set it aside and cool it completely.

In the jar of the blender, add the peanuts, cooked onion and tomato, tamarind, curry leaves, coriander leaves, water, salt. Pulse till you get a smooth paste. remove to a serving bowl. in a small pan, heat the remaining teaspoon of oil. fry the urad/ black gram dal till it is pale golden, add the dried red chillies and wait for a few seconds till they begin to change colour. add the mustard seeds and allow them to splutter, finally add the curry leaves and turn off the heat. Pour this over the ground chutney. Mix and serve with idli or dosa. This can be stored in the fridge for upto 3 days.

The Year That Was ~ 2007 ~ A Roundup of Recipes

Today’s the last day of this fabulous year….and tho I hate to see it go; I am filled with hope for the year that 2008 will be…. In many ways, 2007 has been a defining year for me…. If you read my other blog you will know that there have been many firsts for me this year…..things that I gingerly took a step forward to and they firmly became some of the best things I ever did…… this blog for instance…..for much time I was a lurker and trawler of food blogs and looked at them with amazement and awe….and then with one uncertain step I plunged into it…..not knowing if I would be read at all…yet the want to be part of this celebration of all things food was too strong for me to ignore….. I watch with amazement as the modest numbers go up on my stats counter…. More than anything, I am happy with the people I have met and the familiar comfort I feel when I know I am part of this tribe that celebrates food just like I do….the people I have learnt so much from, who’s recipes I have tried with much success, today I am so much more sensitive to what I eat, cook and try out…I am more observant of ingredients and flavors and most of all am willing to try out anything atleast once….of course K accuses me of not cooking for him but for the blog these days…. but then I guess all spouses of food bloggers suffer from the same malaise…..

Apart from a look back and nostalgia, Nupur called out for the best of 2007….. so here it is…..with less than 50 posts and almost those many recipes … top ten recipes of the year….these aren’t in any particular order….they’ve graced my blog, table and parties…. Its great to be able to revisit them and share them with you…..

Chocolate Truffles

Chocolate Truffles

Hand Made Chocolates

Hand Made Chocolates

Truffles and homemade chocolate

For the contribution they have made to my life this year, truffles and homemade chocolates they deserve pride of place on this list….chocolates in a way liberated me…from the shackles of identity, possible depression and self belief….they made me do something I loved and enjoyed, brought me a lot of success….much more than I’d have hoped for and even put me on tv!! Chocolates made me choose what I wanted to do…. Enjoy what I chose and reveled in the success that was 100% my own…..they have made me believe in a lot of things I never would have thought possible and put the crown on this fabulous year that 2007 has been for me personally……..

Date and Fig Ravioli

Date and Fig Ravioli

Date and fig ravioli

This one was truly a masterpiece…it is a show stopper and became so popular that I have already made it 3 times…. The light melt in your mouth crust….The ever so slightly sweet filling, the flavours and textures that mingle and make you savour it…. Ravioli…I am glad we met and made acquaintance….the best part is that filling can be varied both sweet and savoury…

Eggless Butter Cookies

Eggless Butter Cookies

Tarts and biscuits

For the sheer simplicity of ingredients and procedure, cookies and tarts make it to my list…again the tarts can be filled with a variety of things both savoury and sweet….makes for a simple yet well appreciated home made gift….it made me believe I can bake much more than bricks!!

Yeasted Hot Cross Buns

Yeasted Hot Cross Buns


This was a second attempt and met with much success…infact I ate a piece out of each of the 12 buns I baked just to make sure they really turned out as good as they looked…. It was my first attempt at bread of any kind and savoury baking….filled the house with that warm delicious smell that only bread can bring

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins

Whole Wheat Apple Muffins


Whole wheat and apple…with very little butter and full of wholesome goodness….these little ones were a big hit…and called for repeats….

Eggless Chocolate Pinwheels

Eggless Chocolate Pinwheels

Chocolate (Eggless) Pinwheel Cookies

Simplicity is the key that I look for in baking particularly because I am a novice baker….and I feel less nervous tackling cookies rather than cakes….. so chocolate pinwheels takes pride of place because it qualifies on the simplicity factor…but fools you with its beauty…. This is a recipe you can make dough out of and freeze till you are ready to bake…..

Idiappam and Ishtu

Idiappam and Ishtu

Idiappam and stew

Making this was so much like starting the blog…you wacth from afar with awe and respect…then take the plunge and never believe you are going to come into your own…. But you do…and it always surprises you!! Idiappam and stew has been like that for me… its simplicity bowls me over…perfect comfort food, and fix for all seasons

Hara Bhara Kabab

Hara Bhara Kabab

Beetroot Raw Banana Cutlet

Beetroot and Raw Banana Cutlets

All things kababish!!

the beetroot and hara bhara versions of what I dish out with alarming regularity are just a couple of ways to bring nutrition to the table…who can refuse a cutlet when offered? I haven’t encountered anyone till date who does…. Imagine nutrition and taste in one package….

Spice Powders

Spice Powders

Dynamite heaps

spice powders…or chutney podis make it to the list due to their sheer versatility…. They can spice up happenings like none other….idlies, dosas, steaming hot rice, bread and sprinkled on veggies too…..they are time savers and deliver a substantial spice kick




One of the simplest dishes to make and soothing on the palette and the digestive system….from my training under MIL dishes, this one takes the cake for simplicity, appeal and wholesome goodness….

As I went through the picture files, I have realized that I could have put up a much better show with all that I hoarded….so to more frequent and better posts in the new year then!! As I look back on the year of food blogging, I am so happy with finding and being a part of this world…. To meet so many people with similar interests….to be able to find almost any recipe that you are looking for…. With step by step instructions and pictures of real food…. to know that you are one with a tribe of people who don’t think it is weird to discuss kitchen ingredients….to see a little bit of everyones life at the table….peeking into personalities and homes and lives….we are interwoven in the strongest bonds of all….food…..of blog events, deadlines and celebrations!! Of not being able to wait till you post…taking endless pictures, editing and agonizing over them….of the reassurance in the form of comments and feedback….it brings joy known only to a blogger….

I also learnt so much about healthy vegetarian cooking…. That it doesn’t have to be drowning in oil and masala to tickle your tongue….

I learnt that tho this is part of my life for long time now….i need to let go of an all consuming obsession…. Infact in a surprising manner, this blog has helped me put so many things into perspective…and because its out there for the world to see….it has meant a deeper commitment to many of the decisions that I have made….

So in the new year, I hope to explore much more than I thought I would….to cook better, wholesome and innovative meals….to experience once again the joy of creating a meal or a dish … to eat healthier….

A big thank you to all my friends, family …..thanks for being there and for being you…

A warm hug and a huge thank you to you – my readers …………. thanks for coming back to Escapades…for holding my hand through these first few steps…..for all the feedback and encouragement, I am grateful….truly and honestly…..for appreciating all that I have attempted…. escapades has a little bit of me everywhere….and if there is something in particular you’d like to see here, please do let me know….

Finally….to K…my soulmate…. Who painstakingly sat through my bouts of cooking, serving, clicking, surfing, writing and posting…who became my unofficial photographer just to make things easier for me…. Who has valiantly tried to answer the barrage of most inane questions like the 3rd degree…. For being the taster, appreciator of all my culinary escapades…. You know what I want to say to you….

Have a great end to this year everyone……and have a fabulous new year, filled with all that you truly want….may we find answers to the questions we want to ask…and happiness in all that we do…. Have a wonderful new year!!


To the stars in the sky and our dreams!!

%d bloggers like this: