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Recipes To Try At Home

Cooking Indian food is a lot of fun, bringing new flavors to your table or maybe recombining some familiar tastes in a new way.

Each region has its own type of food, but there are some Indian spices, such as turmeric, corriander, cumin, chili powder, and mustard seeds that you will use over and over. These can be found in most Indian speciality grocery stores, or ordered online from Ethnicgrocer.com

Some ingredients may be a little harder to find. Again, try the Indian speciality stores where there are many pre-packaged mixes of flours and spices that can be used in these recipes. This is especially true for South Indian dishes such as dosas and idlis. All you need to do is add the wet ingredients and follow the recipe to cook.

So...check out the recipes posted this month and keep checking back each month for new dishes. Don't forget to check the recipe archive for listings from previous months!

JANUARY RECIPES for Pongal Celebrations
Click here for starter ideas and recipes featured in the past!

Sarkkarai Pongal


8 cups milk
1 1/2 cups rice
1/4 cup dry yellow split-peas
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
about 1/8 cup chopped almonds
about 1/8 cup chopped cashews
1/4 cup raisins, soaked in water to rehydrate
1/4 tsp nutmeg powder
3 Tbsp melted butter (ghee)
1 tsp cardamom powder
1/4 teaspoon saffron (optional)


1. Pour milk into a large pot or pan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once the milk boils, add rice and dry split-peas. Cover, reduce to medium.

2. As the rice and split peas begin to soften (about 15 minutes), add the melted butter and brown sugar. Stir well to prevent sticking, and continue to cook. Make sure that the milk remains at a low boil.

3. After 15 minutes, add the cashews, almonds, saffron, and cardamom powder. Remember to keep stiring well.

4. Cook over medium heat for another 10 minutes or so, then add the raisins and raise heat to bring the entire mixture to another boil.

5. Serve pongal directly from the cooking pot, allowing all to share the meal together.



3 cups rice flour
1 cup cracked wheat (bulgar)
1/4 cup sesame seeds
3 tsp cumin seeds
salt to taste (large pinch)
1/4 cup melted butter (ghee)
oil for deep-frying


1. Toast the cracked wheat until golden brown in a skillet with enough oil to prevent sticking. Let cool, then combine with rice flour.

2. Add salt, sesame seeds, and cumin then mix well. Pour in the melted butter and combine to form a crumbly texture. Slowly add small amounts of water to form a VERY stiff dough.

3. Knead the dough gently and roll into a thin, long snake shape. Separate into 6 inch lengths. Roll each length into a tight spiral and set aside

4. Heat enough oil to deep-fry in a large pot over medium-high heat. Test heat with a small scrap of dough: oil should begin to bubble quickly. Deep-fry each spiral until golden-brown on both sides.

5. Drain the murukku spirals on paper towels and serve hot as a snack or appetizer.

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