Thavala Vadai | Mixed Lentil Fritters

Thavala Vadai – A festive special fried food prepared with mixed lentils, rice and with coconut but without any onion or garlic. Honestly, we don’t need any occasion to make this recipe. Crispy on the outside and soft inside, this vadai an anytime perfect recipe. Today I am happy to share my mom’s Thavala vadai recipe. Read further to check the detailed recipe with stepwise pictures.  Jump to Recipe 

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Little Millet Ammini Kozhukattai | Ammini Kozhukattai with Little Millet Dosa Mix

Little Millet Ammoni Kozhukattai

Little Millet / Samai Ammini Kozhukattai – A healthy and a delicious savory neivediyam for this Vinayakar Chaturthi, prepared with little millet dosa mix. You can prepare this vegan ammini kozhukattai in 30 minutes. Last week I posted the sweet nei appam, so this week it got to be a savory one. With Vinayakar Chaturthi coming up in two days, what’s better than this savory ammini kozhukattai? This ammini kozhukattai can be prepared any time for a healthy munch. These spicy balls are perfect for hunger pangs too.

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Javvarisi Payasam | Sago Kheer | Saggubiyyam Payasam

Kheer or Payasam is one of the quintessential recipes, in particular, on the festive days. And the South Indian Thali is incomplete without the kheer or payasam. When I was browsing through my payasam archives, I realized that I hadn’t posted the sago kheer or javvarisi payasam as we say in Tamil. Sago Kheer is my go to neivediyam recipes on most of my Thursday pooja. Sago is the tapioca pearl, and it is one of the widely used food ingredients during fasting days. With Holi festival coming up, I thought of posting it sooner than later. :-)

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Kadalai Paruppu Sundal | Channa Dal Sundal

Kadalai Paruppu Sundal

As karthigai deepam is right around the corner, I thought of sharing some of the neivediyam (offering to God) or prasadam recipes. Last year I posted the Pori Urundai recipe and I explained about the festival in the same post. Today I am going to share one of the simplest neivediyam. It’s the kadalai paruppu or the channa dal or the Bengal gram dal sundal.  Sundal is nothing but legume stir fry. Sundals are not meant only for Navratri, be it any festival, sundals are one of the easiest recipes to prepare.

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Quinoa & Nectar Kheer | Quinoa Pudding with Liquid Sweetner

I am wishing a Happy Navratri / Vijaya Dasami/ Durga Puja to all my friends. Today I am presenting a low calorie healthy kheer or Payasam or pudding. I can hear you asking, how can a kheer; a sweet recipe can be healthy and low calorie? What if it’s prepared with quinoa and without any sugar? Here comes my Quinoa Kheer prepared with Truvia® Nectar

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Adai Batter Vadai

 I always love quick and easy recipes, of course not compromising the taste though. So does everyone right? That’s the big motivation behind the Prep Once and Serve Twice series that I did for IMC. I always think, if a recipe/dish can be used in multiple ways. Again the credit goes to my mom for this kind of thought process. I need to post couple of her trademark recipes. Stay tuned for those but today’s recipe is going to be Prep once Serve Twice concept recipe or two in one recipe. By this time you might have guessed what it is from the recipe name – Adai batter Vadai.

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Garbanzo Beans Sundal

I cannot think navratri without Sundals. These sundals brings me back the fond memories of navratris in periyakulam. I used  go invite our neighbors and friends for thamboolam and this will be my standard dialogue – “Enga veetla golu vachu eruka, vethala paaku vangika vaango” (meaning we have kept golu come over for prasadam and thamboolam) and I have couple of standard songs to sing whenever some one asks me to sing. Sri mann Narayana, Thajanmendru Kenchikirom were my standard songs and our friends and neighbors started asking me to sing different songs and they started to tell my music teacher that I am not singing any other songs except these two. Now do I have an option? Nostalgic moments. :-)  In this inviting process, I collect sundals also and by the time I reach home I would have collected at least 1/2 kg of different varieties of sundal. I wanted to post some sundal recipes and when I went through my archived posts I realized I haven’t posted kothukadadalai or garbanzo beans sundal.

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Sesame Seeds filling for Kozhukattai / Ellu pooranam / Chiguli

As I mentioned in my yesterdays post this time I am planning to post only the pooranams or the fillings for kozhukattai. From last year we started the tradition of making play dough pillaiyar. We don’t get it perfect but it’s always fun making together. It’s a great family activity for us. Kiddo is always worried about the mooshaka – Ganesha’s vaahanam. Vaandu loves the  mooshaka character very much. Here are our funny creations. I know it doesn’t match the original pillaiyar but our humble attempt.





So now back to the recipe, this pooranam is also a sweet pooranam and it is very simple to make. You don’t need to cook like for coconut filling. Just soak the black sesame seeds for sometime and dry roast it. Then grind it along with jaggery. That’s it the pooranam is done. We call this Yellu Chiguli in kannada. For all the gowri vrathams this chiguli and Thambittu (rice/wheat flour dumpling) is a must. These are standard neividiyams in our custom.


Here is the recipe,


  • Black Sesame seeds – 1/4 cup
  • Powdered Jaggery – 3 tbsps (The ratio of sesame seeds to jaggery is 1 : 1/2 )
  • Water for soaking sesame seeds
  • Elaichi / Cardamom powder – 1/2 tsp or 1 whole elaichi


  • Soak sesame seeds in water for 15 minutes.
  • Now squeeze the water and dry roast till they splutter. Do add any oil.
  • As they start to splutter turn off the heat and let it cool.
  • Now dry grind it along with jaggery and elaichi.


That’s it the pooranam is ready. You can prepare this pooranam well ahead also and this stays unto 1 week when refridgerated. Now you can prepare the outer covering and fill this in and steam it.


Kaara Kozhukattai Pooranam / Urad Dhal Kozhukkati/ Mothak filling


I can’t believe that I am posting two recipes in one day. This month seems pretty crazy with all the festivals. Thank God, Amma is here so I am able to manage this marathon and other posts along with work :-) I think Ganesha/Vinayakar/Ganapathy is everyone’s favorite God and thanks to Bal Ganesha cartoon He is kiddo’s favorite God too. I love collecting Ganesha Idols and I have one dedicated shelf full of His idols. These collections are from India and from the local pooja stores in US. This festival is always fun. With Gowri nonbu or habba the previous day – both days are filled with sweets and delicacies. I wish I could be in India and get a day off for this festival and celebrate it leisurely. Here is my collection.  

TheRackGanesha Idols

Last year I posted the Mothakam or Sweet Kozhukattai recipe.  



This year I am posting the spicy or kaara kozhukattai filling. The procedure for preparing the filling differs but the procedure for making the outer layer or the cover is the same for all kozhukattais or Mothakams. The kaara kozhukattai filling is so yummy that it doesn’t need the outer cover at all. If the festival falls on weekend I fill this into kozhukattai if not I just keep the steamed filling itself as neivediyam.  You can add this into the sambhar like purupu urundai or in rasam too. 

Here is the simple kozhukattai recipe. All you have to do is soak the urad dhal along with a teaspoon or channa dhal and toor dhal and red chilly. Grind it. Do the tadka and steam it. That’s it. After the steaming process we usually crumble it and prepare the kozhukattais or you can leave as is without crumbling.       


Kaara Kozhukattai Pooranam / Urad Dhal Kozhukkati/ Mothak filling
The spicy filling with urad dhal for the kozhukattai - Vinayakar Chathurthi Special
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
20 min
  1. Urad dhal - 1/2 cup
  2. Channa dhal - 1 tsp
  3. Toor dhal - 1 tsp
  4. Coconut - 2 tbsp
  5. Turmeric - 1/4 tsp
  6. Salt - 3/4 tsp
  7. Red chillies - 2 (adjust according to your taste)
  8. Hing - 1/2 tsp
  9. Curry leaves - a couple
  10. Oil - 1 tsp
  11. Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
  1. Soak urad dhal, channa dhal, toor dhal along with red chillies for 30 minutes.
  2. Grind them into a coarse paste by adding not more 2 tbsps of water along with salt and hing.
  3. Now heat the pan or tadka vessel. Add oil.
  4. Once the oil is hot add the mustard seeds and curry leaves.
  5. As they start to splutter add it to the grinded mixture.
  6. Now add the turmeric and coconut and mix well.
  7. Grease the idly trays with oil and take a medium lemon sized ball of the grinded mixture and place them in the idly tray.
  8. Steam them for unto 15 minutes.
  9. Let it cool and that’s it the filling is ready.
  1. Before prepare the kozhukattai crumble the steamed urad dhal dumplings.
Vidhya’s Vegetarian Kitchen

Coconut Jaggery filling Mothakam / Kozhukattai

This weekend was one of the exciting weekend. Met my undergrad buddies V & S. S had prepared a typical South Indian Meal. Rice, Sambhar, Puli kuzhambu, Rasam, Pudalangai kootu, Vazhakai Kai, Potato roast, Papad and spinach rotis too :-) Eat, chat and gossip – this is what we did. Came back home and slept crazily that I didn’t even feel the 6.1 earthquake that affected bay and Napa when all my colleagues felt it. Thank God, the majority of injuries are non-life threatening.  But its scary though.

When I goto India, I do get lot of gifts, but when my friends go for vacation and come back, I get gifts too. (I am spoiled that way :-) ) My friend P, got this cute mothak mould for me from Mumbai. So far I have never used mould for making kozhukattai. I make my own shapes :-) Before vinayaka chathurthi we wanted to try this mould. So sunday evening, we both decided to make mothakam/kozhukattai together.  We tried the mould, also we tried hand made mothaks and I tried my regular boat shaped kozhukattai :-)

2014-08-26 16.39.152014-08-26 16.39.22

Kozhukattai – I need to do this for Varalakshmi vratham, Garuda Panchami, first week of mangala gowri, Vinayaka Chaturthi and for saraswati poojai also. I need to do two varieties, coconut filling and sesame filling. Right now I am posting the coconut filling.

So here is the recipe:

For the filling: Coconut Pooranam

  • Grated coconut – 1 cup
  • Jaggery – 3/4 cup (Adjust according to your taste)
  • Water – 1/4 cup
  • Elaichi/Cardamom powder – 2 tsp
  • Poppy seeds/kasa kasa – 2 tsps (optional)
  • Ghee – 2 tsps
2014-08-24 17.05.08

Coconut filling ready..

For the cover:

  • Rice flour – 1 cup ( I just used the store bought rice flour)
  • Water – 1 cup
  • Gingelly oil or ghee – 1 tsp
  • Salt – a pinch
  • Sugar – 1 tsp
2014-08-24 17.16.04

Before kneading..

2014-08-08 08.16.09

After kneading


Pooranam or filling:

  • Heat the kadai and add ghee.
  • Once its hot, add poppy seeds, if you are using.
  • Let it roast for couple of minutes, then add water and jaggery.
  • Let the jaggery dissolve completely and then add coconut and elaichi powder.
  • Cook till the water gets evaporated and keep it aside.


  • Boil the water in deep bottomed vessel by adding oil/ghee, salt and sugar.
  • Once the water starts boiling, add the rice flour slowly and keep it mixing it.
  • Mix the flour well, cover it and reduce the heat.
  • Turn it off in couple of minutes and let it sit for 5 minutes.

Mothakam/Kozhukattai process:

  • While the flour is warm, grease your hand with ghee or oil, and knead the dough nicely  ( so that the outer cover doesn’t break.)
  • Now make small balls out of it and start  pressing it so that you get nice thin circle.
  • For boat shaped kozhukattai, take sufficient filling and keep it at the center of the pressed circle and close it so that it forms a semi circle. Now close the edges with your fingers and press the edges with fork to get nice pattern. (Pressing with fork is optional)
  • For mothak shape, press the dough balls into a small cup and fill the pooranam inside and bring the edges together and close them.
  • For the mould, we just followed the instructions and will post a video soon, before saraswati poojai :-)
2014-08-24 17.50.33

Left two are the boat shaped, middle four are using mould and right three are hand made

  • Once the kozhukattais are done, steam them for about 10-12 minutes and thats it yummy coconut filling mothaks/kozhukattais are ready.

Enjoy and Happy Vinayaka Chaturthi :-)

2014-08-24 18.10.10

After steaming…