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Some Indian cities are known for their age old civilization while others

for their modernity and development. There are others that lift people's heart with their absolute simplicity and harmony.
   
India is blessed with number of world heritage monuments
showcasing the breathtaking architecture and intricate work. Taj Mahal, a unique master-piece is the wonder in itself, an absolute epitome of Indian culture, heritage and civilization. Behind each monument is an underlying sense of mystery, intrigue and romance.
HYDERABADI BIRIYANI
Meat 1 kg
Semi cooked rice 750 gm
Sautéed brown onions to taste  
Ginger garlic paste 1 tbsp
Red chilli paste 1 tbsp
Green chilli paste 1 tbsp
Cardamom powder ½ tbsp
Sticks 3-4
Cinnamon  
Cumin seeds 1 tbsp
Cloves 4-5
Lemon juice 2 tbsp
Curd 250 gm
Clarified butter 4 tbsp
Mace A pinch
Mint leaves to taste  
Saffron 1 tsp
Water ½ cup
Salt 1 tbsp
Oil ½ cup
  METHOD
  1. Clean the meat.
  2. Now in a pan add meat, salt, ginger garlic paste, red chilli powder, green chilli paste, sautéed brown onions, cardamom powder, cinnamon, cumin seeds, cloves, mace, mint leaves and lemon juice. Mix it well.
  3. Add curd, clarified butter, semi cooked rice, saffron, water and oil and mix it well.
  4. Now apply sticky dough on the sides of the pan.
  5. Cover with lid to seal it and cook for about 25 minutes.
  6. Hyderabadi Biryani is ready to eat.
  7. Garnish with boiled eggs, sliced carrot and cucumber.
  8. Serve hot.
CHETTINAD CHICKEN
Chicken 1 kg
Large onions sliced fine 2
Tomatoes chopped fine 2
Ginger paste 1 tbsp
Garlic paste 2 tsps
Curry leaves 10-15
Chilli powder 1 tbsp
1 star anise
Lime juice 2 tsps
Salt to taste
Poppy seeds 1 tbsp
Coriander seeds 1 tbsp
Cumin seeds 1 tbsp
Aniseed/fennel seeds 1 tbsp
Dry red chillies 3
Cinnamon 1 Piece
Cardamom pods 2
Cloves 3
Grated coconut 3
Vegetable/sunflower/canola oil or ghee 2-3 tbsps
Chopped coriander leaves to garnish
  METHOD
  1. Heat a heavy pan or skillet on a medium flame and roast the poppy, coriander, cumin and fennel seeds, dry red chillies, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and coconut for 3-4 minutes. Remove from flame and allow to cool. Grind the mixture into a coarse powder in a clean, dry coffee grinder.
  2. Mix the ginger and garlic pastes with this powder and keep aside.
  3. In another deep pan, heat the oil and add the curry leaves. When they stop spluttering, add the sliced onions and fry till they are light brown.
  4. Add the spice paste and star anise and fry for another 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add the tomatoes and chilli powder and stir well to mix all the ingredients.
  6. Add the chicken, cover and simmer till it is tender.
  7. When the chicken is done add lime juice, mix well and turn off the flame.
  8. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve.
SAMBAR
Toovar dal 1 kg
Coriander seeds 2 tablespoons
Bengal gram dal 2 tablespoons
Turmeric powder 1/2 teaspoon
Tamarind paste 4 tsps
Green chillies 4-5 nos
Curry leaves 7-8 nos
Brinjals 100 grams
Grated coconut 1/2 cup
Mustard seeds 1 teaspoon
Poppy seeds 1 tbsp
Red chillies 4 nos
Asafoetida 1 pinch
Salt
Oil 3 tablespoons
  METHOD
Wash the toovar dal and boil with turmeric powder. When the dal is tender churn it completely. Dissolve the tamarind paste in 2 cups water. Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a small pan, add 2 red chillies, coriander seeds, chana dal, 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds and sauté for 2 minutes. Cool and grind to a paste. Sauté coconut in the remaining oil and grind to a fine paste.

Mix the masala paste with tamarind water, chopped brinjals, green chillies and curry leaves. Add this into the mashed dal along with more water if required. Cook this on a low flame till it starts boiling. Add coconut paste and continue cooking on a low flame till the gravy thickens slightly.

Heat oil in a small pan, add mustard seeds, remaining red chillies, fenugreek seeds and asafoetida. When the seeds start crackling add into the dal. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Serve hot with steamed rice
MASALA VADA
Channa Dal 1/2 Cup
Toor Dal 1/2 Cup
Urad Dal 1tbsp
Ginger 1 inch piece
Red Chillies 5-6
Salt to taste
Curry leaves Few
Onions big 1 no (finely chopped)
Oil for deep frying
  METHOD
  1. Soak all dals together for an hour.
  2. Grind all ingredients except onions to a coarse paste.
  3. Heat oil for deep frying.
  4. Add onions to the paste.
  5. Shape like Vada and deep fry.
DOSA
Plain rice 1 Cup
Parboiled rice 1 Cup
Whire Urad Dal 1/4 Cup
Methi (Fenugreek) seeds 1/2 tsp
soda bi carbonate 1/2 tsp
Curds 1/2 Cup
Ghee or oil as preferred 10-12 tsps
Water for grinding
  METHOD
  1. Boil the milk.
  2. Add sugar and mix well.
  3. When it boils again, add the washed rice in it. Simmer in medium flame.
  4. Cook till the rice is done.
  5. Serve hot.
PAL PAYASAM
Milk 3 litres
Sugar 700 gm
Dried red rice 180 gm
  METHOD
Wash the rices and dal together. Add plenty of water and methi seeds. Allow to soak for 7-8 hours or overnight. Rewash the rice by draining the water 2-3 times. Grind to a paste. Rawa -like grains should be felt in the batter. Add soda bicarb and salt and mix well. Keep aside in a warm place for 8-10 hours. Beat the curds well.

Add to the batter, add more water if required. The consistency of the batter should be thick enough to thickly coat on a spoon when dipped. Heat the iron griddle or non-stick tawa well. Pour a spoonful of batter in the centre, spread with the back of the spoon to a thin round. Pour a tsp. of ghee or oil over it. Remove with spatula when crisp. Serve hot with chutney and / or sambar.

IDLI
Idly rice(Ponni rice if possible) 2 Cups
Urad Dal 1 Cup
Cooked rice 1/2 Cup
Methi (Fenugreek) seeds 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste
  METHOD
  1. Soak Idly rice and Methi together in water for about 5-6 hours.
  2. Soak urud dal in water for 3 1/2 hours.
  3. Drain the water from urud dal and grind it in mixiewith little water.
  4. Fine grind it until the mixture is frothy. Keep aside
  5. Now drain water from soaked rice and methi.
  6. Grind these along with cooked rice and little water in mixie.
  7. Now mix the ground items and add salt.
  8. Allow it to ferment for 16 - 18 hours. Then make idlis.
MEDU VADA
Raw rice 2 Cups
Urad Dal 2 1/2 Cups
Onions big 1 Large chopped
Green chillies 4
Oil 2 Cups
Salt to taste
  METHOD
  1. Put dal and rice in water and leave it for 5 hrs.
  2. Drain it and grind it to make a paste.
  3. Now add chopped onion, green chilies and salt and make it like a batter.
  4. Heat the oil in pan.
  5. Take small portions of the batter in ball like shape and deep fry it.
  6. Fry it till it turns golden brown.
  7. Medu Vada is ready
KESARI BHATH
Rava/ Semolina/ Cream of wheat 1 cup
Sugar 1 & 1/2 cup
Ghee 3 tbsp
Water 1 cup
Milk 2 Cups
Colouring (optional) - Kesari colour / Saffron / Yellow
Garnishing : Cashew Nuts, Raisins, Almonds, Cardamom powder
  METHOD
  1. Heat a pan with 1 tsp ghee, roast all the nuts. Keep aside.
  2. Add another tsp of ghee, roast the Rava till it comes out non - sticky. Remove and keep aside
  3. Heat the pan with water and Milk and bring to boil. Add Sugar and let it dissolve.
  4. Then add the rava little by little so that lumps are not formed.
  5. Simmer and cover with lid so that Rava cooks well. Add all the garnishing ingredients. Top it with remaining ghee.
  6. Depending on individual liking, this can be served. It can be chilled and served. We like it hot!
AVIAL
Yam sliced thinly into 11/2" length pieces 1cup
Cucumber sliced lengthy into 11/2" thick pieces 1cup
Snake gourd sliced into 11/2" length pieces 1cup
Carrot sliced into into 11/2" length pieces 1/4cup
Long runner-beans sliced into 11/2" length pieces 1/2 Cup
Drumstick cut into 2" length pieces 2nos
Raw bananas sliced into 11/2" length pieces 1no
Mango pieces for sour
Turmeric powder 1/2tsp
Salt to taste
Grated coconut 1/2quantity
Green chillies 5nos
Cumin seeds 1/2tsp
Curry leaves 2sprigs
Coconut oil 3tbs
  METHOD
  1. Coarsely grind the coconut, green chillies and cumin seeds. Keep it aside.
  2. Clean the vegetables.
  3. Heat 2tbs coconut oil in a thick bottom vessel. Add the vegetables and cook in a low flame. Do not add water. When it is done, add turmeric powder, salt and mix it well. Remove the vegetables from the middle and put sliced bananas and mango pieces and cover it with the other vegetables. When steam comes out, add the coconut paste and stir well. Remove from fire. Mix the remaining coconut oil and curry leaves in the avial.
PINEAPPLE PACHADY
Ripe pineapple cut into - 1/2" square pieces 2cups
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste
Grated coconut 1cup
Dried red chilli 1
Coconut oil 2dsp
Mustard seeds 1/2 tsp
Dried red chillies 3 (cut into 6 pieces)
Curry leaves 1sprig
Crushed mustard 1tsp
  METHOD
  1. Boil pineapple, with turmeric and salt in 1/2 cup water. Grind coconut with dried chilli to a fine paste.
  2. Heat the oil and season with mustard seeds. Saute the coconut paste and add the curry leaves and dried red chillies. When it is done, add the boiled pineapple pieces. The gravy should be thick and the cover the pineapple pieces. Add the crushed mustard just before removing the pachhady from fire.
PINEAPPLE PACHADY
Ripe pineapple cut into - 1/2" square pieces 2cups
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste
Grated coconut 1cup
Dried red chilli 1
Coconut oil 2dsp
Mustard seeds 1/2 tsp
Dried red chillies 3 (cut into 6 pieces)
Curry leaves 1sprig
Crushed mustard 1tsp
  METHOD
  1. Boil pineapple, with turmeric and salt in 1/2 cup water. Grind coconut with dried chilli to a fine paste.
  2. Heat the oil and season with mustard seeds. Saute the coconut paste and add the curry leaves and dried red chillies. When it is done, add the boiled pineapple pieces. The gravy should be thick and the cover the pineapple pieces. Add the crushed mustard just before removing the pachhady from fire.
FISH MOLEE
Fish (preferably firm fleshed and single-boned) 500 gm
Onions 2 large
Tomatoes 3 medium size
Green chillies 4
Ginger 1 small piece
Garlic 4 cloves
Turmeric 1/4 tsp
Red chillies 2
Coconut grated 2 cup
Vinegar 1tsp
Cashew nuts 5-10 pcs
Salt to taste
Oil
  METHOD
  1. Cut fish into thick slices, wash and keep aside.
  2. Cut onions into fairly thick rounds, chop ginger fine and slit green chillies.
  3. Extract 1/2 cup of first milk from coconut and 2-1/2 cups of second milk. Keep aside.
  4. Chop tomatoes small, and keep 1/2 cup separately.
  5. De-seed red chillies and grind till smooth along with garlic and turmeric.
  6. Grind cashew nuts separately till smooth. Heat oil and put in the onion rounds and chopped ginger. Sauté till onions are transparent, but do not let them brown.
  7. Add the green chillies and sauté for a minute more. Then add the tomatoes and the ground ingredients and salt.
  8. Sauté till the tomatoes begin to turn pulpy. Pour in the second coconut milk and mix in the ground cashew nuts and vinegar.
  9. Stir till gravy is well blended, check for salt and gently drop in the fish pieces.
  10. Cover and cook over low flame till fish is done and gravy is thick.
  11. Add a little more water if gravy is too thick.
  12. Drop in the reserved tomato pieces and cook for 2 minutes.
  13. Gradually add the first milk and swirl the dish around till it is well mixed.
  14. Keep for just a minute longer on the fire and remove.
  15. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with a single sprig of mint.
  16. Serve with plain rice or thickly sliced fresh bread.
PONGAL
Rice 1 cup
Moong dal 1/4 cup
Jeera 1/2- 1 tsp
Peppercorns 1/2- 1 tsp
Pepper powdered fresh 1/2 tsp
A few Cashewnuts broken
Dessicated Coconut 1/2 cup
A pinch of Turmeric powder
Ghee
  METHOD
  1. Fry the Moongdal a little till you get a light flavour.
  2. Mix the dal with the rice, add 2 -3 cups of water (the rice should cook very very soft)
  3. Add turmeric powder, coconut, a few peppercorns and a 1-2 tsp of ghee to the rice and pressure cook till done.
  4. When done, take a kadai add sufficient of Ghee to it, more the ghee better it tastes, add jeera, pepper corns and cashewnuts.
  5. Add the cooked rice mixture, add pepper powder, salt and mix well with the ghee and jeera/cashewnuts.
 
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