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Aayi’s cooking tips

These are some of the very useful tips which aayi keeps telling me always. When I follow them properly, the result is always good.

  • While cooking potatoes, Cut them into half and add a pinch of turmeric. This makes the potatoes cook faster.
  • While cooking toor dal, add a pinch of turmeric and a drop of oil. Toor dal cookes faster.
  • While cooking pulav, wash the rice in water and spread it on a cloth or paper for drying. Leave it for around 15-30 min. This makes the rice grains separate.
  • While cooking pulav in kadai (i mean not using cooker), do not mix the ingredients frequently, if u mix it, the rice becomes paste. So after 10-15 min of cooking, just open the lid and have a look. If you feel it is cooked, gently mix the contents once or twice.
  • Use water always in 1(rice) : 2 (water) for pulav. After 10-15min of cooking, if u feel water is less, just add little water.
  • Always cook pulav on very low flame.
  • While making chapathi, leave the dough for 30 min to make soft chapathis. Some more tips here
  • Over roasting/burning/over frying any spice changes the taste of the dish. So be careful while handling the spices. (Mustard turns bitter when fried for a long time).
  • Puri dough should be made little harder than chapathi dough. This prevents puri from retaining more oil when it is deep fried. Also once dough is prepared, make the puri immediately. Some more tips here
  • While adding tadka(seasoning) to any curry or dal, add it once the curry/dal is completely cooked. Close the lid immediately & remove from flame. This will retain the seasoning aroma. Do not cook after adding seasoning.
  • Put the brinjal(eggplants) pieces or peeled smoked brinjal in water for around 10 mins. Discard the water. This removes any bitter taste from them.
  • Do not hold any spice powder packets directly on the dish while cooking, the hot vapors get into the packet and spoil the powder. Take out the required amount of powder on a spoon and then add it to the dish.
  • Always use a flat bottomed pan for cooking (except for frying puris, they need depth), this helps in equal distribution of heat. Also, use broader vessel compared to thin tall vessel.
  • If your kitchen stove has got black mess on it, spread some baking soda and rub lightly. Leave it for around 15mins and give it a good rub and wipe off. The hard mess usually comes off easily.
  • For good fermentation of idlis and dosa batter, read this post and comments.
  • While cutting boiled potatoes, dip the knife in water. This avoids sticking to knife.
  • While grinding coconut during cold days or while grinding frozen/cold coconut, use warm water. This helps in easy grinding and also avoids the fat floating on top.
  • Add 1/2 tea spn of sugar while cooking beetroot in cooker. This avoids the spreading/splashing of color.
  • To remove the black marks from the stove top (the kind of stoves in US particularly), spray some oven cleaner, leave for around 10mins and then gently scrub them off. Difficult marks come off easily.
  • Never put garlic or cardamom, which are not peeled in hot oil. They pop up and can cause serious burns. If you need to use them whole, slightly open up the skin from one side.
  • Add a little salt when frying tomatoes, this helps to get them mushy faster.
  • To remove black stains in cooker or vessels, add a small piece of lemon and 1/2 cup water. Heat for few minutes and wash immediately.


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{ 243 comments… add one }

  • Anonymous April 26, 2006, 6:09 am

    Hai shilpa,
    Thank you for your nice tips.

    • Bonnie June 2, 2014, 7:46 pm

      I need to know if you please tell me what to do if the tandoori chicken got a little dry and hard. Can I make tikka masala or something similar?


    • Shilpa June 3, 2014, 11:41 am

      Yes, I think it will be good in tikka masala

  • Haripriya Prabhu April 26, 2006, 6:09 am

    Hi Shilpa
    You are right about the puri dough because last time I had made the dough ghatti as I usually do, only I kept it aside for half an hour or so and the dough became soft; I was wondering about it.Thanks I got the answer now.

  • deepa September 6, 2006, 10:24 am

    hi shilpa…
    had a look at your site..gr8 job…keep going

  • Pramod Batra October 11, 2006, 12:47 am

    can some body tell me receipe for making papad from dal and potato.

  • Anisha November 30, 2006, 4:45 pm

    hi here are some tips from my side…..

    dunno whether ppl know this aleady or not…neways….for making chana / peas / beans recipes we need to soak t nuts 7/8 hour ahead of time…sometimes it happens so tat we wud need it urgently n wont have them ready to cook…to avoid such sitns, wat u can do is when u buy such peas / chana / chole etc soak them in water tat nigt itself and when they are completely ready, drain t water, pack them in small amounts and keep in freezer…whenever u want to use them, jus defreeze n use it…one of my neighbour cooks n freezes…in tat way i guess i may lose nutrients….

    another one..

    for instant tea…those who dont like tea bag yet annoyed by t time tat takes in traditional tea making….can try this……take a small jar…boil enough water to fill water, when water is at high temp, put enough tea leaves(tat means tea powder), and close it, shut t gas……let it cool down itself….once done transfer to t bottle n keep in fridge…u can use this for 1/2 weeks…i wud wait for a reply from shilpa on this…

    k..tat’s all from wat i know. bye

  • Anisha November 30, 2006, 4:51 pm

    one more i remembered…..when cooking a lot of veggies at a time say like beet, carrot, potato,beans etc….t color of one veggie may spread to t other and destroy ur colorful meal, to prevent it…when u boil these veggies add one teaspoon of sugar in it…(this wont make t veggies to taste sweeter..)but wud help t veggies to retain t color themselves…this one is a tried n valid info from many sources…try out

  • Shilpa December 1, 2006, 2:24 pm

    Anisha, thanks for those tips. I will try them. Usually I soak chana/peas/beans in hot water for around 1 hr and use them if I need them urgently. I haven’t tried freezing.
    The third tip, (retaining color of veggies) looks very very useful. I will try it. Thanks a lot.

  • Medha December 13, 2006, 11:33 am

    Hi Shilpa
    Wanted to ask u few tips..firstly when i make chicken curry here somehow the chicken pieces
    do not soak the curry in .. dont know y ..
    Secondly wanted to ask u something diff if u use aluminium kayl how do u maintain and clean them
    bcos after ive used them a lot of times for making talasan and frying things they are turning black now
    Pls adv if possible ..Thanks Medha

  • Shilpa December 13, 2006, 11:51 am

    Medha, If you marinate the chicken well before cooking and serve it after 4-5 hrs, it might solve the problem. I think it is because of the frozen chicken. The pieces become very hard after freezing. In case you get fresh chicken somewhere(say in chinese store), use that and I feel this problem will be solved. I used fresh chicken from a Pakistani store here recently and the curry came out very well.

    After cooking, put a small piece of lemon skin (instead of discarding the skin after taking out lemon juice) and 1 cup water in the kayl(vessel). Heat it for 2-3 mins till the water boils. Now wash it. The kayl becomes like new. Same thing you can do with cooker, while cooking(if you are using cooker vessels in it), add a small piece of lemon along with water at the bottom and then keep the vessels. While it is still warm, wash it and all the black marks goes off.

  • Medha December 14, 2006, 10:00 am

    Thanks a lot Shilpa for ur prompt reply
    Will surely follow ur advice ..Yes i did use frozen chicken
    so maybe that was the problem ..
    Abt the tip for kadai and cooker will definitely
    try it out next time when i have lemon at home
    Thanks very much once again

  • Aparna Prabhu December 19, 2006, 10:10 am

    hi shilpa.. great site.. this is the first time i happened to see this while i was searching for the recipe of missal.. and am sure will be hooked on to it..thanks for all ur cooking tips..

  • somia March 20, 2007, 2:20 am

    dear shilpa, hi

    i m very thankfull to u for ur delicious resipes and very helpfull cooking tips. it is my first time that i find a very beautiful site. congratulations for a very good site.

  • mamatha March 23, 2007, 9:49 am


    There are so many websites offering recipes but yours is different
    …accidentally i happened to come here for chutney powder recipe and really liked the way the website is designed, very appealing and the best part is to know that they are all tried and tested recipes :)

    Keep up the good work!

  • Nayak Mayi March 28, 2007, 12:26 pm

    Hi Shilpa,
    I have benefited a lot from some of your tips and from your reader friends tips too. Thanks. I have a question, not sure if this is the right place to ask. Related to frying bajos in advance for party. How do i heat them again and make them crisy just before serving. Any ideas?

  • Shilpa March 28, 2007, 5:38 pm

    Nayak mayi, Usually deep fried food should not be fried before and used. But if you want to do it, you have to refry it before serving. But still the texture/taste would not be same. So my advise would be, keep ready everything before and just before serving, deep fry them. You can add a bit of rice flour or maida to batter to make them crispy.

  • karish April 4, 2007, 4:41 am


  • Sneha April 4, 2007, 9:06 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    Your tips are very thoughtful and very helpful! Keep them coming.Great work!

  • Manju April 10, 2007, 6:07 pm


    When ever I’m cooking the raw ground onion paste, the result ll be a great failure. can u give any tips for that?

  • Sachin April 13, 2007, 10:26 pm


    I am in Sydney. Please tell me can we blend the row rice in the food processor.

    Here I am not getting the Indian grander. So I wanted buy a food processor. Please suggest some tips for me.

    Thanks in Advance


  • Shilpa April 14, 2007, 7:51 am

    Manju, if you are using the raw onion paste directly, it will smell. You can cook the onions in water before and then grind them to get rid of the smell.

    Sachin, you can grind the rice in food processor. I use a blender(having glass vessel instead of plastic) to grind everything. I too don’t have an Indian mixer here. The blenders work very well. So I think you should buy a blender, but make sure you buy a blender with glass vessel. The plastic one might break very soon.

  • Sachin April 14, 2007, 10:18 pm

    Thanks for the Suggestions I am very greatful to u…

  • manju April 24, 2007, 1:52 pm

    Thank u shilpa….very nice of u!

  • Veena April 26, 2007, 10:04 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    I am travelling to India with my 4 year old son next week. Please let me know receipes of foods which I can prepare & carry with me for myself & my son.

    Thanks & regards

  • Shilpa April 26, 2007, 6:51 pm

    Veena, I don’t know much about what children eat :(. May be you can take some cookies(Nankatayi-homemade), cakes. I will try to find out more.

  • Vijeta April 30, 2007, 12:34 am

    Thanks you for nice tips

  • ramani April 30, 2007, 3:09 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    I feel your tips are very useful.I want you to give some more tips for sout indian brahmin recipes.

  • archana May 10, 2007, 2:01 pm

    I liked the way you have put up these rceipes. Also, I have fwded
    the url to my friends in different parts of the world who surely find it helpful. Thanks Shilpa.
    great work

  • Archy May 21, 2007, 2:22 pm

    Hi.. Shilpa..

    This site is too good.. For the first time i’m able to get all kind of recipes an tips in one site..Its really helpful for the beginers like me..

    Thank you for such a wonderful recipe site..!!

  • Neeraj May 26, 2007, 8:26 am

    hi shilpa,

    First of all gr8 job..its a wonderful site.My hobby is cooking its such a stress buster.Since im a bachelor many time i have nothing else to do.
    I live in China many things are not available easily here so would you suggest options to the following essential ingridients:
    1. Tamarind
    2. Vinegar
    3. Mint Leaves
    4. Green Chillies(here only the organic variety is available :( all size and color no taste)

    How does one preserve coconut after breaking them up?
    Awaiting your reply.
    Thanks .. Neeraj.

    Shilpa: Neeraj, if you tell me which exact recipe you are trying, I might be able to guess the replacement, there is no general replacement for all these, but we can guess depending on the dish. In the Chinese store here, I have seen a small variety of green chili which I used before I found out Indian store. They also had mint leaves and vinegar.

    • tanushree reddy April 10, 2014, 7:46 am

      Hi Shilpa,

      How are you ? Thank you for all the wonderful tips . Would like to clarify a doubt of mine, so please help me. i have used 1:3 proportion for making rava idli & the batter is fermented well. Idlis were soft too but the idlis were tasting & smelling strong of urad dal flavour. Please suggest me as to wat can be done to take of the smell from it . Eagerly waiting for your reply.

    • Shilpa April 10, 2014, 1:46 pm

      Sorry I am confused. Which recipe did you use? Rava idli does not have urad dal and does not need fermentation

  • bee May 27, 2007, 10:22 am

    just wanna know how can i make boneless chicken softer in curries

    Shilpa: Bee, you should use the chicken when it is very fresh. Once it is frozen, you cannot make it soft.

  • Maya May 28, 2007, 8:45 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    Great site. I’m visiting ur site for the first time..

  • Meera June 4, 2007, 1:20 am

    hi Shilpa,
    Your site is too good.First time i’m able to get all kind of recipes an tips in one site.Its really helpful for the beginers like me.Every month i will check your new recipies.

  • Meera June 4, 2007, 1:21 am

    hi Shilpa,
    Your site is good one.First time i’m able to get all kind of recipes an tips in one site.Its really helpful for the beginers like me.Every month i will check your new recipies.

  • Vandana Jadhav June 28, 2007, 10:33 pm

    Hi all,

    i’m in complete agreement with all, that this site no doubt is gr8!!!
    so i seek help in finding the recipe for “malvani masala” since i stay in gujarat (INDIA) where we don’t get these typical maharashtrian masalas, so pls let me know
    thanx n rgds

  • Seona July 4, 2007, 7:59 pm

    Hi shilpa
    i am from mangalore bsaed in sydney. i tried all your recipe they realy helped me to learn cooking, great site keep up the hard and good work. a big thankyou from me
    i hav a question how can i preserv curry leaves without loosing that original colour.

    Shilpa: Spread the curry leaves on a paper till all water dries out, water makes the leaves go bad soon, so make sure it is completely dry. Then separate out individual leaf and put in an airtight plastic bag(like ziploc) and keep refrigerated. This way the leaves remain fresh for more than a month.

  • Surabhi July 5, 2007, 1:39 pm

    I m very thankful that i got this site. This site is good one. Its very helpful.

    I just wanted to know how to make Dal Bhati(Gujrati/Rajasthani dish)

    Regards & Thanks

  • Ramya July 16, 2007, 7:10 pm

    Hi Shilpa,
    do you have any tips for fermenting dosa or any other batter in winter? I prepared urad dosa other day and kept it in warm oven but next it was bit hard and it did’nt taste well.

    Shilpa: Ramya, I had the same problem until I bought Sumeet mixer. The urad daal needs to be very very soft. You can keep the batter in hot water for sometime and close with a thick towel.

  • Ramya July 16, 2007, 7:10 pm

    Hi Shilpa,
    do you have any tips for fermenting dosa or any other batter in winter? I prepared urad dosa other day and kept it in warm oven but next day it was a bit hard and it did’nt come out well.

  • Ramya Mallya July 17, 2007, 5:43 pm

    Thanks a lot Shilpa. I’ll do the same next time. I had actually stopped preparing such dosas and used to prepare other dosas which does not need any fermentation.

    Shilpa: Ramya one more thing is to mix salt very well in the night. This helps in fermentation

  • Sanjana July 22, 2007, 4:26 pm

    Nice tips Shilpa.

    Very helpful.


  • Sanjana July 22, 2007, 4:27 pm

    Also, please let me know as to how can i post a recipe of mine on your site.


  • shobha July 25, 2007, 8:56 am

    dear shilpa,
    Nice site for people like me who search for recipes on the net. Good job!!! Keep it up.

  • Neha August 7, 2007, 3:25 pm

    This site is so so helpful and very well created. Can i post some of my own recipes?

    Shilpa: Neha, please mail the recipes to me, I will try them out and then post them here with due credits to you. Thanks

  • Rutu August 21, 2007, 8:42 pm

    Hi Shilpa
    Can you tell me what to do if I want to make a good amount of ginger garlic paste at home, what are the proportions to use and how much (hot)oil will I need to put in it to preserve it?
    And how long will it last?
    Do i grind it all in a mixer?

    Shilpa: Rutu, I think Anupama is the right person to ask this question. I haven’t tried it myself. But I have heard that ginger and garlic pieces(1:1) are fried in a little oil and then ground into paste and saved.

  • Bhagya September 1, 2007, 7:31 pm

    Hi, good tips ,
    one more tip if u r cooking green veg in a pressure cooker, to retain the color u release the preesure immediately and open the lid

  • sk September 5, 2007, 5:20 pm

    I have not tried cooking non-veg as my hubby is a veggie.I would like to try some chicken/fish recipes from your blog but I have to eat it alone.So I thought I ll ask for some tips from you before cooking.

    I live in US too.So could you let me know what kind of chicken/fish you buy here?
    like do I buy fresh/frozen,chicken with bones/boneless, thighs/breasts/drumsticks etc?

    For fish,which fish can I buy here as all of them are new to me.

    And any tips which you remember while defrosting(how long to defrost in microwave) and cooking chicken/fish..I like it to be completely cooked without any raw smell(like we prepare in India),so how do I check if its completely cooked.

    Thanks in advance,will apreciate your reply.

    Shilpa: SK, I usually buy fresh chicken (the one in meat isle of grocery stores). I don’t buy the frozen chicken. I use the fresh one that is usually available in poultry section. It has to be finished in 2-3 days, but it is actually fresh and when cooked, gives good taste. You should buy the chicken depending on which dish you are going to cook. Since we like boneless, I buy boneless chicken breasts all the time. I don’t buy fish from American grocers. I just buy frozen shrimp there. I buy other fishes either from Indian or Chinese stores. If they look familiar then only I buy them.

  • sk September 6, 2007, 4:30 pm

    I will look for these next time I go to buy groceries.Thank you so much :)

  • kalyani September 9, 2007, 8:39 am

    hi shilpa,
    Thanks for the tips u have given.they r very useful for me.here is a tip from my side.I stay in denmarkt .When we came initially we dont have any stores where we get chillies.we use to bring chillies from india and freeze it.they stay from 9months to 1year.

  • priya September 18, 2007, 10:39 pm

    hey shilpa – i did try adding turmeric to the toor dal last nite while cooking – n yes it did cook faster n better than normal. Thank you :)
    one problem I have is rajma or kaala toor dal(used for dal makhani) never cooks enough , no matter how many whistles i keep for in cooker and notwithstanding the fact that I soak it over night. I even tried adding some baking soda before pressure cooking even that dint help.any tips?

    Shilpa: Priya, sometimes if the pulses are old, they take a very long time to cook. I am yet to find a way of making cooking of rajma fast :(. I too have same problem. May be next time you can try soaking it in warm water. While cooking add turmeric (a pinch won’t change the taste, so you can safely add). I will let you know if there are any more tips.

    • Abha December 1, 2013, 11:00 am

      To make rajma soft, soak overnight and add a pinch of baking soda when cooking it. It will cook much faster and be very soft. I also find that the darker rajma takes much longer to cook and the lighter variety less time.

  • Gayathri Shenoy September 23, 2007, 11:23 pm

    Hi Shilpa

    Impressed with your website especially the traditional Konkani stuff! Patholi, Bhakri and what not! Just curious to get to know you a bit more about yourself.
    I have been living in New Zealand with my husband and two children for the past 19 years. A response from you would be very much appreciated


    Shilpa: Thanks Gayathri. You can know all about me in the “About” page.

  • Swati rajesh September 28, 2007, 5:02 pm

    Hi Shilpa,
    Your tips are so helpful.

    How to make Gulab Jamun using milk powder.
    Thanks again.


  • Roopa September 30, 2007, 12:12 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    Really nice recipes. I am newly married and we came to US after 15 days of our marriage. I have tried many of your receipes it is really nice.
    I ma looking for Samosa Recipe, Can you please help me in that.


  • suhasi October 2, 2007, 11:59 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    Came across ur site recently and i must say its a really nice site for everyone.I have a question…i wanted to know the best method to make dosa batter..bcoz everytime i try its a failure..i mix 3 cups ponni boiled rice with 3/4th cup of urad dal soak it overnite n grind it in the morning n ferment it in the oven(not switched om) but still its not the perfect batter..pls advise..


    Shilpa: Suhasi, try using 2:1 (rice:dal)proportion. Mainly it all depends on how much smoothly you have ground dal. Grind it as smooth as possible. Then grind rice. Mix both, add salt and keep the batter in steel vessel(I donno if it makes difference. But last time when I used steel vessel, the fermentation was perfect). The oven thing for fermentation almost never worked for me. So I usually keep the vessel on the stove (after it is switched off but when it is still warm).

  • suhasi October 2, 2007, 8:26 pm

    Thanks a lot for ur suggestion..will surely try it out..


  • Varsha October 9, 2007, 9:17 am

    Hello Shilpa

    I was referred to your website from my in-laws , it’s great so i can go back to some amchi recipes i have forgotten

    keep up the good work and hope you will publish a book and realize your dreams of opening a restuarnt


  • Gillian October 10, 2007, 2:42 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    I just discovered your website yesterday and it looks really interesting. I haven’t tried out anything as yet but plan to do so next week.

    I have a problem which I’m hoping you can help me with. We have not yet been able to make sabudana khichdi properly. The taste is generally good but the dish turns out to be a sticky mess. I guess my problem is with the soaking of the sabudana. Yesterday I soaked the sabudana in plenty of water for 1/2 an hour, then drained it and left it like that for about 2 hours before cooking it. The end result was soft and tasty but was one big lump. What am I doing wrong.

    Shilpa: Please read sabudana khichdi for a the tips.

  • Gillian October 11, 2007, 3:11 am

    Thanks Shilpa. I think my problem was that I put too much water during the first half hour and I may not have drained it out very thoroughly. Also we get the small sabudana here not the big ones you get in India. Maybe that also makes a difference.


  • Pretty Woman October 16, 2007, 6:18 pm

    Hi Shilpa,
    This is a health query, i did not know where to write, so i am doing it here, hope its not inconvenient for u :(
    Query is, can we have yoghurt at night? is it good for digestion if we have it at night? I have always heard it is not good, whats your thought on this?

    Thank You :)

    Shilpa: PW, I heard that if we eat a tea spn of yogurt after every meal, it is very good for digestion. This was the suggestion by a doctor who is also a follower of Ayurveda. So I think it does not matter if you eat it at night. But then, I am saying only what I heard, I might be totally wrong.

  • Pretty Woman October 17, 2007, 7:20 pm

    Ah Thanks Shilpa, yes i do believe that having yoghurt after a meal is good for health… But i was saying on a regular basis (everyday) that too a cup full :) anyway i think ill try it and see if things are working, only then ill continue consumption.
    Take care! :)

  • Manisha Chaudhari October 22, 2007, 3:04 am

    Wow ! What a find…. This site is great and the name is a real eyecatcher. Wherever in the world you are, who would not want to have a taste of Aayi’s cooking. In this age of fast food, it is so imperative to document, preserve and pass on the rich treasure of simple home made recipes.

  • latha November 12, 2007, 2:01 pm

    Hi..a few tips from my side..When you have a fresh coconut grate it the way you like and freeze it. Also while cooking Rajma you can add a pinch of baking soda to the water while cooking if you feel that it hasn’t been soaked enough. It gets Rajma soft and completely done.

  • kishori , R,Rao November 21, 2007, 3:06 am

    Hi Shilpa, 2day for the first time I came across ur recipe site.Thanks It will help a lot of people with tips n all that. thanks a lot.

  • K.Boy November 21, 2007, 8:48 am

    Re:#46 SK comment and reply by Shilpa
    Shilpa, try fresh fillet fish called, Tilapia, in Costco . Two weeks ago my wife S…. treated me with this pan-fried Konkani style fish and it is close to Noguli available in our native place. She marinates just with Hing, salt, Haldi, mirchi powder just for ten minutes and then roll it in cream of rice(idli rava or tandla rulanvu not flour) and slowy pan fry it with little oil on flat chapati or dosa tava. It is very tender still and deliciously tasty, and healthy. I ate with plain rice and alasande upkari(long beans stir-fry Konkani style). Also she refrigerates after all cooked once otherwise fish will get spoiled. She was kind enough to pack me 7-8 pieces to bring here in northen calfornia apartment so that I can get good source of protein daily with Konkani way eating. You will change your mind about buying fish in American market after this.

    Shilpa: To add to this info..I tried cat fish recently. I made both fry and gravy with it. It was very good. Something like our surmai/king fish. Btw…please don’t leave your mail id in actual comment, spammers will catch it and your mail account will be full of spams.

  • anitha satish abidjan November 23, 2007, 6:35 am

    hi shilpa i was searching exactly these type of recipes.great job keep it up.

  • ushma williams December 5, 2007, 1:06 pm

    with regards to having yoghurt at night. it is not advisable as it increases Kapha in the system and over a period of time one will feel more congested in the mornings. yoghurt is best eaten in the earlier part of the day as it is Pitta time of the day and therefore easier for it to be assimilated by the body. A very good book for people who are interested in Ayurveda is Dr Vasant Lad’s AYURVEDIC HOME REMEDIES.

  • nila December 7, 2007, 10:04 am


    when i make chapati in roti maker, it turns out to be hard 5 minutes after it is made. is there any way that it can be soft?

    how can a chapati be heated in microwave(if i take that for lunch to office). tawa made chapati’s too turns out hard, when it is heated in microwave oven

  • Rashmi December 15, 2007, 12:44 pm


    After making chapati,wrap it in the paper towel and put it in the zip lock. You can refrigerator the ziplock

    Microwave the chapatis without taking it out from zip lock for 15 to 20 seconds. The chapatis will be very soft.

    Make the paper towel little wet before microwaving to make chapatis even softer.

    Hope this helps.


  • shilpa December 20, 2007, 12:47 am

    HI Shilpa,

    Your website is truly helpful. I am from Karwar. Not a good cook, but am sure your recipes & handy tips will make me one.

    Thanks & keep up the good work
    All the best.

    Will keep in touch


  • Rashmi December 21, 2007, 3:29 pm

    Does anyone have any tips to get good fermentation for Dosa batter during winters(especially in US)?

  • preeti December 31, 2007, 11:51 pm


    please advise me as to how can I remove the taste of Soya from soya chunks completely thereby not giving a soy flavour while chewing on it. I don’t like the soy flavour coming through and prefer the same to absorb the curry flavour and taste like meat !!!!!!!

  • Namita January 2, 2008, 10:38 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    You are simply awesome..!!yesterday i tried ur Butter chicken recipe and it was the best butter chicken i’ve ever tasted in my life..!!:-)

    You have a fantastic website and doing a wonderful work.

    And i know alreday many people had requested it, but i am requesting again for ‘samosa’ recipe.

  • Uma January 18, 2008, 11:46 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    Nice job, regarding rajma try using a pinch of eno fruit salt instead of soda bicarb, eno makes the rajma or for that matter any kathor beans like choley, kala channa very soft.

    With regards

  • Chitra January 20, 2008, 1:38 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    I came across your site while searching for Tandoori Aloo recipe. I like the one posted by you as it is very simple.
    You have some good recipes here, keep up the good work.

    I have a tip to share. To cook Rajma well, opt for the Kashmiri Rajma beans (the smaller kidney beans). Soak them overnight, and add a tea bag while cooking them in a pressure cooker (3-4 whistles). Discard the tea bag once the beans are cooked. This trick also works while cooking Chole/channa (chickpeas).


  • Shilpa January 20, 2008, 11:34 pm

    thankssssssss for sharing such a nice tips wid us

  • Aishwarya January 24, 2008, 8:54 am

    Ohh man!..u made me cry..this is the 1st time i accidentally visited ur website..& itz amazing how u hv put up all the mommy’s recepies- i have been living in the US..( Chicago) for like as long as i rember now!.& itz been soo many years since i ate a simple-“aayi chya hatachi chappati”! & u with ur wonderful recepies bring my mom closer to me..thankyou soo much ..hopefully i will squeeze some time to try one of ur dishes over the weekend..thankyou soo much..God bless ya! :) .. Love- Aishwarya .(.P.S. after reading all this i realize how much i miss my parents who r back home in India..bt it feels real good to even see all this mommy food) ..thanks a ton :)

  • AshwiniBalaji January 28, 2008, 8:26 am

    Hi shipa…

    Your tips are very useful..
    I like palak paneer very much
    Pls help me how to prepare palak paner..


  • Krishna February 6, 2008, 9:28 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    Just happend to come to your website searching for gravy to go with biryani………..i cook biryani well but wanted to cook something else for the mrs. so would add this gravy as a side dish for the weekend’s briyani…….

  • Krishna February 6, 2008, 9:34 am

    Thanks a lot and your website really is worth a lot of appreciation. one of the best sites i have visited

  • Lalitha February 7, 2008, 1:58 pm

    How do you make salt adhere to chicken well? My chicken tastes saltless and also a bit dry. Some recipes looks and sounds like the meat is going to fall off the bones so nicesly with the bone tasting salty and chewy..
    Can you help?

    Shilpa: Lalitha, can you tell me any particular recipe where you found this? Marinating chicken with salt for sometime might help a bit. I have noticed that, whenever I used the frozen chicken, it always becomes dry, hard and tasteless. So try using the fresh ones.

  • Lalitha February 7, 2008, 5:15 pm


    Thank you for your immediate response. I have been enjoying your website and some mouth watering recipes you have posted. Cant wait to try them all.. The chicken recipe I was looking for some spicy chicken curry..Later on I saw several notes that mentioned to use fresh chicken than frozen ones. I will give it a try. Thank you again and keep posting those wonderful recipes..

  • NEELIMA February 11, 2008, 5:40 am


    Shilpa: Please check out chapathis and phulkas post.

  • shashwati February 11, 2008, 2:08 pm

    Hi Shilpa,

    On some tips on making chapatis, I dont know why the dough that i make for phulkas always becomes very dry.
    I add oil also in the start…something always goes wrong.
    Please suggest something.

    Thanks so much

    Shilpa: Please read the post about chapathis and phulkas (I have given the link above)

  • monika February 19, 2008, 4:28 am

    hi shilpa,
    nice reciepes. Nice answers u r giving. I want to give u some tip for making toor dal or rajma fast. Soak them overnight in water add some baking soda to them. When u boil them, boil with the same water. Don’t change it. then u will get good result. Try it.

    from MONIKA

  • caprisonal February 20, 2008, 12:52 am

    a friend sent me this link n i jus went thru some of ur recipes. Even ur list of top 10 sounds yumm! I read a few to my mother-in-law n she too found it exciting to see a site like this. Wht is ur complete name n who is aayi? Ur mom or grand mom? My m-i-l’s askin. I thk u spendin ur precious time in sharin these recipes is an amazing thg. A Big round of applaus n i bow to u with respect. U know our generation n the gen aft ours need to know them. some of these recipes are kinda there somewh in our minds but lost in our busy lives. Anyway, thnx n continue ur great work. Eagerly waitin for some more. tc n God bless!

    Shilpa: Capri, Thanks for the kind words. Please read about me in “About” page. I call my mother “Aayi”

  • sadhana February 23, 2008, 8:19 am

    hi ma’m,

    Your site is really interesting and everyday i keep checking the updates..Appreciate your dedication to this site..wonderful website.Gr8 work.Keep it up.


  • Anirudh February 28, 2008, 7:06 am

    excellent tips shilpa ! especially about the pulao Thanks

  • vani February 28, 2008, 4:14 pm

    nice tips. will be really helpfull.

  • nita pai March 10, 2008, 9:42 am

    Hello Shilpa,

    Do U know any recipe that has overcooked rice in it ..?
    Please let me know..Thanx!!!

  • menka March 14, 2008, 7:46 am

    u have great job.i love cooking.can i send my some recipies to ur site …..for this what should i have to do.

  • Pradnya March 27, 2008, 1:13 am


    Thansk for your helpful tips!


  • dimple March 29, 2008, 4:23 am





  • hasi April 1, 2008, 4:15 am

    hi Shilpa,
    I came across your website quite “accidentally” while searching for gas tandoor recipes.

    I usually make “baked dish” in my gas tandoor. But I wanted to know whether I can experiment with an eggless (or with egg) cake with it? Any ideas..? Appreciate any help.

    I will probably try your eggless date cake in it first :)

  • hasi April 1, 2008, 4:19 am

    I forgot to add that I read the few tips that were posted here and found them extremely useful.
    thanks for these..
    hope to go through many of your mouth-watering dishes as well, now that i have discovered your site.

  • hasi April 1, 2008, 4:20 am

    Btw Shilpa,
    I forgot to add that I read the few tips that were posted here and found them extremely useful.
    thanks for these..
    hope to go through many of your mouth-watering dishes as well, now that i have discovered your site.

  • Abhishek April 4, 2008, 5:21 am

    sorry to bother you but i just wana confirm that are Dal Makhani, Kali Dal and Ma ki Dal all the same things or different

  • Abhishek April 4, 2008, 5:23 am

    just wana confirm Ma Ki Dal, Kali Dal, Makhani Dal and Dal Makhani are all different preprations or are all the same names for the same product.

  • hemanth v nayak benne April 5, 2008, 11:31 pm

    hi shilpa,

    thank a lot for designing this web site,
    i am presently studying at Sydney, australia,
    i am from kumta native.

    I came to know about this “aayisrecipes” from my relatives who are of goa, “Shri Ashok & Smt mangala shanbhag baleri,”(kodkani)

    i am very comfortable in cooking now, earlier i used to find it difficult to eat homely food, i was just missing it so much as i had to eat only bread , burgers, pizza, pasta, etc etc. and some times indian food at indian restaurants, but now i cook it on my own at my home.I prepare daily new things with the help of your recipes.

    I live with some friends who are from other parts of india . they all like the food cooked by me very much, there is no doubt that i will learn to cook all our homely dishes within few months,

    thank you so much
    its really much , more, most appreciated.

    please do update more dishes as many as possible,


  • Nancy Medeira April 8, 2008, 2:54 am

    TOO, TOO GOOD FOR WORDS, I just love your lovely cusine, Its my kind. Thank you for all the effort taken

  • dolly April 13, 2008, 2:34 am

    pls let me know, when we preheat an oven using micowave plus grill option as in samsung ,do we need to keep a bowl of water inside so that the oven does not get damaged.
    also let me know how to prepare your eggless cake using convection mode in samsung microwave oven

  • Monica April 14, 2008, 1:52 am

    Hi Dear,

    I really enjoy reading through your different varieties of Receipes. I would really appreciate if you could guide me step by step the preparation of cakes. Cakes i mean simple cakes.

    Regards and lots of thanks

    Shilpa: Please refer cakes and cookies section.

  • R umamaheswari April 17, 2008, 10:38 pm

    very useful tips.

  • vijeta May 15, 2008, 12:12 am

    Hai Shilpa!
    thank you for yuor nice tips.

  • sheema maqsood May 15, 2008, 9:06 am

    i want to know the recipies of lal maas(rajasthani) hyderabadi biryani and nahari

  • minaxi May 24, 2008, 4:41 am

    i hv started with ur soft phulkas which was a real problem for me as they used to be hard. It was a great experience using ur techs

  • sri May 31, 2008, 3:28 am

    Very good receipe


  • k. krishnamurthy June 7, 2008, 1:43 am

    Like every year I had been to Kodkani along with my wife we had pleasure in going through your receipes which is a very good idea. I discussed this with some of relatives abroad surprised to k now that they were already following thois whenever theythink of some new menus.Congratulations for your idea. We have also tried to add to your recipes which we have suggested to your mother.Continue with more recipes which will definitely help bachlores.
    With good wishes,
    Murthy @ Aarati

    Shilpa: So nice to see your comment here Murthy bhavaji :). Thanks for your kind words

  • Latha Kurdekar June 11, 2008, 1:51 pm

    Dear Friend,
    Today i got the oppotunity to see ur website. I am thankful for the valued receips and its tips. its really informative and helps to those who are intrested in cooking. Thankning you Madam.

  • jitu bhaiya Patna wale June 11, 2008, 9:37 pm

    the tips given are very helpful. ye sab dekh ke jee se pani aa raha hai. WOW!!!!!!!

  • Roopali Halady June 17, 2008, 9:28 am

    Brown deposits in your cooker-
    Put lemon slices in to the cooker whenever it is being used.The lemon not only removes the brown stains but also gives a fresh aroma.
    Alternately, tamarind can also be used the same way if you do not have lemons.

  • RADHIKA PRABHU June 18, 2008, 1:59 am


  • jay June 26, 2008, 12:49 pm

    Hi Shilpa
    all ur tips are very useful .
    To roast cashew nuts to a golden brown color soak the nuts in water for about 5-8 minutes squeeze out the water and roast it with little butter so that the nuts will get roasted evenly. This could be applied to raisins as this will give a nice appearence.

  • Palak June 29, 2008, 2:06 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    thanks a lot for all tips.

  • Pravin Gupta July 2, 2008, 11:59 pm

    We are looking for a maharashtrain snacks caterer who can manage and operate a busy outlet in a very busy railway terminus.

    Pravin Gupta
    Mobile: 98206 26981

  • nita pai July 4, 2008, 8:45 am

    Hello Shilpa,

    Please suggest how to make use of overcooked rice… I dont know what I can do with it..!!
    PLEASE HELP !! Thanx in advance……

  • Rajni July 6, 2008, 6:09 am

    Thanks a lot for very useful tips…

  • Dev July 21, 2008, 10:29 am

    I just discovered this web site. Being from Goa, a lot of distinctly native Konkani dishes brought me back my childhood and my own Aayi’s fond memories – which are priceless.

    Thanks for managing this website and taking me back into my childhood for a while……….

  • janaki.s August 6, 2008, 3:11 am

    Hai shilpa, Really good and useful tips these are, thank u for giving nice tips.

  • Shradha August 21, 2008, 6:45 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    I have just got to know bout your site.I have just got married and your web site is like a saviour to me.Jokes apart i love to cook and beeing a maharashtrian i would want to learn some traditional maharashtrian spicy dishes.Can you help me please?


  • nazreena 27 August 31, 2008, 5:45 am

    chilly powder 5 tablespoon tomatoes 4 cut into 4 quaarter 1 onion chopped 1 cup water grind in the blender.
    lit the stove pour in the chillly mixture boil for 15 mins
    oil 1 tablespoon.put in the tahu in the chilly mixture for 10 mins

  • nazreena 27 August 31, 2008, 5:53 am

    mee hoon goreng 1 packet soack in luke warm water.
    dried prawns chilly powder 3 table spoons
    1 carrot cut into fine strips..i onion slice thinly
    lit the pan.pour in five tablespoon of oil
    put in the chilly mixture and simmer for 15 mins
    put in the mee hoon and mix in with the chilly mixture fry for 10 minutes put in 2 tablespooon dark soya sauce and some pepper if want it spucy

  • rohini September 5, 2008, 9:24 am

    I always go through your site when I want to do some special .
    I like this very much… I tried some of these recipies.
    So I want some suggestions from you…. I am celebrating My Son’s birthay in next sunday… & I want to call my 16-20 friends at my home for lunch…will you please suggest me
    some menu to prepare on that Day…. please remember I am alone to cook….
    Please reply me as soon as possible….

  • bhagyashri September 21, 2008, 3:00 am

    hi there….

    will u pls tell me what are d special kind of masala u have to use to make ur sabji’s more teasty……….. well had tried paneer sabji according to ur receipe but it was not teast like outside ……………

    so will b happy if u cud give me sum more tips specially for masala and all


    Shilpa: Bhagyashri, I am not sure which paneer subji you tried(I do not have any such recipe on the site!!!). Every recipe has its own masala and it is mentioned in the particular post.

  • Namrata September 23, 2008, 1:06 pm

    Hi, I am in US and we have Heaters for cooking (Coiled heaters). So when making Phulka’s i am not able to put them on coil directly. It turns black. also as there is no flame, My phulka’s dont turn into balls due to filled steam in it. anyother way so that Phulka’s can swell? Does any one know the process of swelling the roti on tava itself. Some ppl in India can do it and dont put roti on flames directly but instead do it on tava itself. Pls share the procedure with me

  • sudha September 23, 2008, 3:21 pm

    it ws quite helpful but i need to know how to warm already cooked chapatis in microwave

  • Carol Moraes October 1, 2008, 6:06 am

    Dear Madam,

    The receipes which you have put on the website are really very good and easy to learn for new commers like me.I really appreaciate the food you make and the pictures you have put on the website. The more insteresting thing is the description you have given on the Masala and the translated names in other languages.

  • Deepthy October 11, 2008, 9:52 am

    Aayi and you are godsend!!


  • Nita October 26, 2008, 11:57 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    your simple egg cake recipe was really marvellous. its so good an dyummy i can’t express. really mouthwatering. this is was the first cake i ever made that turned out perfect in one go! .. hats off to u !

  • kaveri October 31, 2008, 11:41 pm

    thanks for good site
    i wantd to know about how to fregmentng the dhokalas

  • Kavitha November 11, 2008, 3:18 pm

    Hello Shilpa,

    Your website is great. Good job!
    I have read many people asking you about the chicken. I would like to give the tip for cooking frozen chicken.. I do buy frozen chicken n cook tasty curries. Many people dont get fresh chicken…when cooking chicken curries, you ‘ve to cook chicken on very very low flame for longer time so that meet is tender and it absorbs all the juices from the curry…if you dont have much time, reduce the flame when chicken is 90% cooked and cook it on very very low flame for few mins atleast and see the difference. The longer you cook the tastier is your curry.
    Though the breast meet(white meet) is healthier( I donno how far it is true) than thigh meet(dark meet), breast meet becomes harder when cooked and is less tasty compared to thigh meet. That is the reason thigh meet is prefered for deep frying recipes like pakoda, manchuria, chilli chic etc. hope this will be helpfull.

  • bsraju December 24, 2008, 3:32 am


  • sindhu.s December 26, 2008, 10:06 am

    ur website is d best 4 cookin experience!!! plz gimme d recipe 4 coorgi dishes.
    and if u cud add more recipes it wud be gr8!! :)

  • mrs ali December 30, 2008, 8:01 pm

    adding some freshly sqeezed lemon drops to boiling rice make rice cook white and fresh smelling.

  • urvashi January 8, 2009, 3:29 am

    hi dear..first time i visisted your site..i find it interesting…i took recipe of sabudana kitchri from your site n it come comes out great…

  • Telma January 11, 2009, 5:14 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    I tried some of your simple egg cake and it really turned out well. Your recipes are really great and you have take a lot of effort to explain in detail. this will really help with fresh chefs.

  • aditee January 13, 2009, 7:28 pm

    i love ur recipes..thx for takin time and for ur gr8 lil tips n ideas !! very useful for a foodie like me :)

  • nav January 22, 2009, 8:19 pm

    How can i remove curry stains from clothing ?

  • swati January 28, 2009, 1:50 am

    Thanks for this website

  • SUMA February 7, 2009, 7:34 pm

    I liked your web site. To clean the burner stands and burnt kadais, greased containers, place them in a trash bag on the floor and add a cup of ammonia liquid in it and tie it tightly and leave it over night. (Available in grocery stores for $1 in US) . Next day clean them easily to get new shining articles. Leave a cup of ammia in the oven and leave to be able to clean the carbon. But BEWARE OF AMMONIA VAPORS!

  • swethaskitchen.com February 8, 2009, 12:10 am

    hi shipa
    very useful tips and keep up your good job.

  • nazreena April 1, 2009, 4:41 am

    hi its very nice tips keep it up thanks

  • Anu April 1, 2009, 8:54 pm

    To Keep ur coffee powder fresh for long time add 1/4 tea spoon of sugar to it.

    To keep away ants from sugar ( eternal problem in India ) add 3-4 cloves into ur sugar containner.

    While removing idlis from the idli plate, use a spoon which is dipped in hot water and remove the idlis so that lot of idlis portion are not stuck to the plate itself.

    Whenever u cook tomatoes sprinkle a pinch of salt on it so that it cooks faster.

  • Kaushalya April 8, 2009, 7:21 am

    i have learnt excellent cake recipes, let me try out, and shall get back to you. I am novice in cake baking.

  • Meera April 12, 2009, 5:35 pm

    I’ve read some of your recipes and you often mention “grinding”. With what do you grind? For example you grind the urad dal and rice sooji and I’d like to know if you use a blender or what?
    Thanks so much.

    Shilpa: I use sumeet mixer.

    • Smita May 29, 2014, 4:08 am

      Hi Shilpa,

      You have mentioned in a few comments above that you use Sumeet mixer. Can you please tell me which model do you use? I am really looking to buy one.


    • Shilpa May 29, 2014, 6:52 pm

      Smita, Sorry, I have no idea. I picked it up many years ago from some small shop from India. Unfortunately, the quality of it is not as good as it used to be. I have heard many good things about Preeti mixer, have not tried it though, might be a good idea to check it out.

  • Deepali Mehendale April 21, 2009, 8:39 am

    Hey just want to say thanks for giving so much of important tips and so very tasty dishes in some simpler way. God bless you,

  • Bhakti April 22, 2009, 5:08 am

    For Rajma/Chana that do not get cooked easily, here’s one tip. Soak the Rajma/Chana overnight. Pressure cook with enough water, 1tspn salt, 1tbspn oil for 4 whistles on high flame, then lower the flame and pressure cook it for 20 – 25 mins. Then again switch to high flame and let it cook for 1 whistle. Turn off the gas allow it to cool for some time. The Rajma/Chana gets cooked nicely. Salt gets absorbed by the Rajma/Chana. Drain the excess water. You can use if required. While seasoning adjust the salt as the salt is added earlier.
    One more tip is while pressue cooking the rajma or chana u can add 1 bay leaf, green and black cardamoms this enhances the flavor.


  • Mili June 27, 2009, 4:11 am

    What are Hindi names of Celery and Parsley . I come across these names too often but cant understand..what is their actual use .

    Shilpa: These are not Indian vegetables and I haven’t seen any Indian names for these.

  • jyoti July 2, 2009, 1:37 pm

    i love your site – very helpful

    can you tell me how to avoid a big mess on the gas range when i pressure cook dal? It always seems to come out of the whistle, i’ve tried puting it in a vessal first, but the consistency is not smooth. Toovar dal and urad dal are the worst…

    Shilpa: I use cooker vessel & close the vessel with a steel plate. It cooks well and also does not create a mess.

  • Nithu July 6, 2009, 2:09 pm

    Hey Shilpa!

    I have a tip for u, which really works and I think it would help others too if u would like to add it.

    To clean stubborn stains n grease on the vessel(Eg: To clean the vessel after making palkova). Add 2 tsp of baking soda n 2 tsp of vinegar to half the container full of water n boil it. All hard grease & stains sticking to the vessel lifts up easily while washing it. It really works.

    I hope u like it. Thanks & eager to hear from u.


  • Collection Of Stars July 9, 2009, 9:12 am

    Hi Shilpa, thanks for the cooking tips. They are great. I knew about just a few of them. This will surely help me a lot.
    The recipes in your blog are awesome. Plan to try them out. Thanks :)

  • swarna July 27, 2009, 7:57 am

    Hi Shilpa

    Do you know which chilly powder available in desi stores in US is an alternative for byadagi chilly powder you get in India? Both differ so much both is taste and color – please let me know if you have found byadagi chilly pwd in the USA or any other alternative which works best for curries esp the ones made with coconut..Thanks a Lot!

    Shilpa: I use Kashmiri chilli powder which is available in Indian stores. It is very nice.

  • shirley August 26, 2009, 3:41 am

    hi shilpa
    this tips very useful thanks for sharing

  • satish babu August 27, 2009, 2:07 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    Nice website. Nice receips. i want a small tip from you. that is while making puri it gets more oil. what i have to do for less observing oil while making puri.


    • Shilpa August 27, 2009, 2:46 pm

      Did you check out the link on puri making that I have provided above?

  • Anitha September 8, 2009, 9:30 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    I loved ur site esp coz of d presentation which makes it diff frm d rest of the recipes blogs. Just wanted a tip frm u regarding cooking of pulav. i add d rite proportion of rice n water but it comes out a lil dry. Esp if i keep it untouched for quite some time!! Im tired of findin a solution for this. Is this somethin tht u can help me out?


    • Shilpa September 8, 2009, 11:07 am

      You can add little more water and try. If you are directly cooking it on stove top, usually it requires little more water

  • Anitha September 12, 2009, 6:25 am

    Thanks for ur suggestion… i tried and now its fine:-)

  • vijeta September 23, 2009, 1:54 am

    very very useful tips

  • Sam October 11, 2009, 6:54 pm

    I wanted to know if i dont have Tirphala can i use an alternate ingredient.. if yes.. what .. and how much will the taste differ

    • Shilpa October 11, 2009, 6:55 pm

      Tirphal/teppal has a very unique aroma to it and I don’t think there is a good replacement. Just leave it out if you can’t find it.

  • preeti October 12, 2009, 2:17 pm

    hey hi…
    this site is really good…
    i have never steped into the kitchen[my mom keeps yelling at me for this] but aft reading the way u explain how to make stuff i think im gonna try some:)
    thanks n keep up the good work:)

  • preeti October 13, 2009, 3:31 am

    hey i tried the batata talasane…it turn out pretty good :)
    thanks to you i can actually cook thoda sa! wow:)
    i think i cut the potatoes a bit to thick so it took long to cook but all in all in was good…:)

  • Anagha October 20, 2009, 11:59 am

    hi to make chirotas really crispy should rava be more or less to maida’s proportion?i dont like soft…i amde them this diwali but they turned out little soft the next day..

    • Shilpa October 20, 2009, 1:08 pm

      Which recipe did you follow? The one I have does not have rava.

  • punita October 29, 2009, 1:35 pm

    Nice compilations of recipes Shilpa. I do like and check your website daily but never commented.
    I made dosa(from scratch) recently after 3 years and it turned out really good.
    3:1 ratio of any rice to urad dal. But my Mom suggested to use 2 spoons of cooked rice and 2 spoons of avalakki while grinding the rice. This makes the dosa crepe like Masala Dosa.
    The dosa batter was next kept in the Oven BUT “with the oven light switched on”. This helped the batter. I do the same for the making yogurt in winter.

  • pranshu November 10, 2009, 5:46 am

    nice tips. i dnt knw cooking wid d help of dis site i learn more recipies. i really love dis site

  • vrinda December 6, 2009, 10:32 am

    this is my first visit to your site. creditable. great.
    my father is from south karnataka konkani, mom GSB maharashtrian.
    though i have been eating valval and yogiratna since childhood, did not know the difference.
    eager to see and try all of your recepies

  • medha shanbhag January 7, 2010, 1:30 pm

    can u tell how to make avala supari as the season in on

    • Shilpa January 7, 2010, 2:39 pm

      We mix the amla pieces with salt and sundry them. Sometimes we do add a little chilli powder to it along with salt. This is the traditional way of making the awla supari at our place.
      Some people mix little crushed jeera with amla before drying.
      Then there are other ways like soaking in buttermilk/yogurt along with spices etc. We usually make it simple as I mentioned.

  • Shilpa Rao January 11, 2010, 3:06 am

    Hi Shilpa

    Thanx for sharing these tips…I had a look at the making of chapathis. I have tried every possible way to make softer chapathis but it’s just not working for me…well I am now gonna try using ur tips…


  • Nalini February 2, 2010, 10:48 am

    Dear Shilpa

    your web site is cool and the recipes and tips are awesome.I tried the neer dosa and it came out well.but in chennai we make something similar like this called aappam which is fermented and done the next day.the taste was similar.

    thanks a lot and will keep visiting ur site often.


  • daaniyaal March 1, 2010, 2:20 pm

    helpfull tips

  • prajakta more March 17, 2010, 6:46 am

    Normally tea filter of steel gets early dirty and u cant clean it properly with Washing soap easy way is to keep it on gas stove and hit it for a minute to 5 all the Dirt will be removed from the Filter

  • Maaya April 26, 2010, 8:35 am


    How do you work with Okra. i love okra but sometimes it becomes all gooey and slimy…
    ideas or tips?


    • Shilpa May 2, 2010, 7:23 pm

      Apply some salt to okra pieces and leave it aside for few minutes. That reduces the slimy effect.

  • Andrea April 28, 2010, 7:00 am

    Dear Shilpa,

    Really enjoy your recipes and especially the pics. I wanted to give one small tip.

    Before you add crabs to the gravy, smash the tip of the claws thus making way for the gravy to penetrate in the claws while cooking.

    Trust me will definately make a difference especially for those who like to chew the claws before breaking them.

    Hope you’ll find my tip useful


    • Shilpa May 2, 2010, 7:11 pm

      Yes, I have mentioned this point in crab gravy post. We always crack the legs before adding to gravy.

  • kanthi May 13, 2010, 1:03 pm

    Iam a big fan of yours ma.in 2008 when i had been to my children and had a plenty of leisure time i used to read your blogs.Very decent site.

  • Neeta May 28, 2010, 11:56 pm

    hi shilpa, came across –awla supari in yr site.
    in this mango season, i suggest u one MUKHWAS !
    after eating ripe mangoes, preserve all gutlis, put in cooker adding lot of water in it. cook for a long time.
    let it cool, then take out the inner gutli of mango. make small pieces and add salt to it. let it merinate for a day or two. and then let it dry in sun until it’s water content is gone. ready to store in bottle–use it anytime.

  • Neeta May 29, 2010, 12:03 am

    we use cooker daily. so it becomes dark from inner side.
    to avoid this, make it a habit, to preserve lemon skins, after using its juice. (dry in sun) and when u are cooking in cooker, put single piece daily in water. yr cooker will shine- like new one.

  • bhuneshwari May 30, 2010, 5:08 am

    hi shilpa
    really ur cookong tips r very useful. thanks

  • Shilpa Bhambore June 25, 2010, 12:13 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    Very Useful Cooking Tips.Especially “While cooking pulav, wash the rice in water and spread it on a cloth or paper for drying. Leave it for around 15-30 min. This makes the rice grains separate”.


  • Ali July 3, 2010, 8:29 am

    Thanks a lot for sharing so many nice things.
    I want to know how to preserve ginger garlic paste so it doesnt turn green or spoil?

  • sud September 3, 2010, 4:18 am

    Superb site till date i have seen on recipes .Its really pictorial and very elaborate .Keep the good work and wish u all the success.

  • priya September 13, 2010, 7:13 am

    thx shilpa even ur tips r very helpful for me.

  • Mithun Kamat, Gokars-Kumta October 29, 2010, 8:53 am

    Hi to all,

    I am very happy from this site. I learn many homemade things here. Keep posting new and easy things bcoz we cant prepare tough reciepe na!!!!!! Thanks to all GSB’s.


    Mithun Kamat

  • anjali kadam November 9, 2010, 2:27 am

    hi shilpa ,

    nice site u got.congrats and good luck.
    I would like to know the receipe of layered karangi baked.I know the deep fried version.
    Also about cooking rajma and chole ..i try this and it works for me. After 2-3 whistles of the pressure cooker sim the gas flame and keep for 35-35 minutes. During this time there should be no whistle..the gas flame must be that low.
    try this and let me know ..i am eagarly waiting

  • Gayathree.J November 23, 2010, 6:16 am

    hi, these are really wonderful tips. thnx

  • jaya December 5, 2010, 9:46 am


    this is very useful site.have nice day.take care


  • Hema December 21, 2010, 9:55 am

    Hi Shilpa,
    Icame across to see your website while I was looking for some indian recipes. your recipes are really good! Keep it up,and please write some party recipes also.Your Tips are really usefull! Thank you so much.

  • Priya December 23, 2010, 10:38 am

    Hi Shilpa, I am a regular visitor to your blog. Tried and loved many of your recipes. I wanted to share a quick tip… Whenever you have to make batter with Besan, use cold water(from the fridge) rather than regular water and that gets off the clumps in the besan batter easily.. I have tried it many times and found it effective.. Thanks!!

  • Aparna January 10, 2011, 7:57 am

    I tried making Tandoori chicken.. The dish turned out to good tastewise. However it was lil dry. How to make it little juicy and tender??

    • Shilpa January 12, 2011, 9:02 am

      One of my friend told me he pulls out the chicken from oven every 15-20 mins, squeezes some lemon juice (you can just use water may be) and puts it back. I never tried it. Will try and post sometime

  • MELROY MISQUITTA February 9, 2011, 6:01 am

    This site is the best, I have visited many recipe sites but none as simple and tasty as this.

  • renuka shettigar February 12, 2011, 12:39 am

    thanks shilpa i liked this site and your easy tips

  • Krithika February 16, 2011, 2:22 am

    Hi Shilpa

    I have recently moved abroad and want to learn how to use an oven (not microwave, but the one fixed under the cook top). Are there any important do’s and donts while using these ovens? Are there different baking dishes(trays) suited to various temperatures?

    • Shilpa February 16, 2011, 8:55 am

      You can use any oven safe dish that is available in market.

  • lakshmi February 17, 2011, 9:55 am

    i have tried many of u r recipes all was good ,can u just help me to know how to make cakes and cookies without using oven.

  • Medha shenoy February 25, 2011, 7:29 am

    Thank u shilpa for u r tips.want to know much more from u.

  • RadhaRamesh March 3, 2011, 8:59 am

    Hai Silpa
    i m radha
    Thanks for ur tips.Ur way of explaining the process is so nice and simple and easy to under stand by all.I need a advice from u.My son is more liking the pani puri which i hv to get frm outside which i dont like.so pls tell me how to make puris which is harder(suitable for pani puri)i made but always it ssofter.pls advice.

    • Shilpa March 4, 2011, 10:16 am

      I will post it as soon as I find it

  • Shireen March 12, 2011, 11:48 pm

    my hubby will be feel happy.. thanks for tips

  • Shireen March 12, 2011, 11:50 pm

    i have tried that tricolour chappathi super..yummy..my mother in law said .. ur choo sweet..thanks

  • Melissa April 9, 2011, 8:05 am

    Hello I am a beginner in Indian cooking. I have recently discovered your site and I can’t wait to start trying these wonderful recipes! Several of your recipes call for “grind”ing certain ingredients..Can you please tell me which tool you use for grinding? Thank you!
    Kind Regards..

    • Shilpa April 10, 2011, 8:21 pm

      If they are dry ingredients, you can use a coffee grinder. For wet grinding, you can use a food processor. Indians normally use a mixer/grinder (you can google for Indian mixer/grinders) for most of the grinding.

  • Mary Susan April 16, 2011, 7:56 pm

    Hi Aayi,

    Great tips and great recipes. It’s nice to get the authentic thing. Thanks.

    Here are some abbreviations to make your life a little easier: teaspoon = tsp. ., tablespoon = T.

  • Sindhu May 19, 2011, 9:24 am

    Very good and useful info…..
    Nice website…. Thank u…..

  • Shilpa June 6, 2011, 5:23 pm

    Brilliant tips and amazing recipes…


  • Hema June 8, 2011, 9:19 am

    Wow amazing tips. I never knew that adding a pinch of turmeric in anything makes it cook faster.

  • reema July 17, 2011, 7:02 am

    how to protect sugar from ant

    • Shilpa July 23, 2011, 4:54 pm

      You can keep few cloves in the sugar bottle, which keeps ants away.

  • Nivi July 26, 2011, 11:14 am

    very helpful tips and a wonderful recipes .. thanks for sharing :)

  • Stephy August 10, 2011, 5:07 am

    very useful tips! thanks Shilpa coz ur work helps people like me who have no one to give tips or anything. I’m also a great fan of puri same like u, but i dint know how to do…. i tried urs and had 7 puries. thank u so much for sharing! potato bhaji is also great!!! Great work! keep it up!

  • ISHMEEN KAUR August 10, 2011, 11:24 pm

    shilpi, plz guide how to keep small ants away from home…. i have a small kid due to which every time some or other eatable is lying on the floor and results ants are there…..

    • John DMello August 29, 2011, 5:37 am

      Place the peel of cucumber in places where there are ants.

    • VINI September 21, 2011, 9:45 am

      just spread pinch of turmeric powder. the ants will never come at the spot. try it once. it will be very effective.

  • ISHMEEN KAUR August 10, 2011, 11:30 pm

    shilpi…. can you get me the resturent type recepie of chicken fried rice….
    as every time i prepare ,my husband comes with the comment its so desi…… some one told me for chinese we need to have high flame available as in resturents……but how its possible at home……..

  • Poonam Kaur August 19, 2011, 8:15 pm

    Hi Ishmeen
    I noticed ants in my kitchen couple days ago, I had heard turmeric (haldi) powder helps keep them away. So I put some turmeric in this opening on the floor I knew they were coming from. That worked miracles! I would recommend that.
    Also, I would get an ant spray and spray it around the perimeter of the house, and at the base of the doors, to prevent ants from getting in.

  • kavita September 12, 2011, 9:16 am

    there are so many ants on the floor. what should i do?

    • deeksha October 14, 2011, 7:02 am

      use turmeric powder around that area

    • Kavitha March 21, 2012, 3:07 am

      Sprinkle salted water or water mixed with camphor

  • deeksha October 14, 2011, 6:53 am

    Hi Shilpa,

    To get rid of cockroaches from your house u can try this.

    Mix 1tsp of maida with 1tsp of boric powder and 1 tsp of sugar with water and get the consistency of chapatti dough. Now make small balls and place them in corners of the house, cupboards.

    It is going to do miracles !!!!!

  • mrf November 21, 2011, 9:25 am

    Am going through an attack of weevils, flying, crawling all over my kitchen, please help.

  • soniya May 9, 2012, 5:06 am

    if u want ants outside from ur kitchen n house, turmeric is not sufficient.u have to use lakshman rekha a white stick like chalk, which you can easily find in the stores. this is the best best way to keep ants outside ur house,, u have to just draw the line from that chalk piece where u can find ants, and within 20 seconds u can see the results. the cost of lakshman rekha is Rs. 15/-

  • Kamlesh June 17, 2012, 10:10 am

    i have found camphor(a tab or piece of camphor or pieces of camphor )the best solution to get rid of ants try it and you will agree with me !

  • Mamatha July 24, 2012, 3:44 am

    to get away ants & mostle cockroes, i would suggest of No Entry paste which is availble in medical shop. Its 100% effective.

  • riva October 28, 2012, 6:54 am

    hi shilpa,anks to
    Its amazing ..this blog is very good comes out very aromatic .thanks to u n your parents god bless….please post some more konkanis recipes especially veg n fish.thanks

  • Lalitha Kishorekumar July 3, 2013, 7:05 am


    Your recipes are very systematic. Very useful cooking tips.

    Lalitha S.K.

  • Venilla Naidoo July 5, 2013, 1:08 am

    Hi Shilpa

    Great website. Thank you…Pls elaborate more on how if possible I can get rid of the burnt smell from my food as I cooked the most tasteful veg dish comprising of samp & beans and I burnt the bottom. All the food has the burnt smell now. Please help as I would really like to salvage this meal…

    Thanks & Regards

  • madan shet July 23, 2013, 7:29 am

    hey shipla,

    This is really nice to c’ these recipes that to in our konkani go, I m very happy to here these konkani words.
    ‘Ghar ki Yaad diladi yaar’


  • Harini August 26, 2013, 7:02 pm

    Hi Shilpa
    Thank u very much for ur tips.I came recently to US.Toor dal is not getting cooked,i have been struggling a lot.
    Thanks a lot for ur nice tips.

  • neha October 17, 2013, 4:30 am

    what happens if rice and urad daal is soaked together for idli batter

    • Shilpa October 17, 2013, 9:02 am

      Usually urad dal needs more grinding. For very soft idlis, dal has to be ground into very smooth paste. Rice need not be so soft. Infact we usually make it into rava/sooji consistency to make the idlis a little grainier. I use wet grinder, first grind dal for 20mins and then add rice to it and grind another 15mins.

  • pallavi December 29, 2013, 10:40 pm

    hi..we may cook all gr8! recipies but a salt is common n important which can make success or failure . pls can u suggest me how to make food with proper salt in taste i mostly fail in that .in currys n dals we can add if require but in any food like biryani or fried rice what to do .


    • Shilpa December 30, 2013, 12:17 pm

      I think amount of salt needed for any dish comes from practice. I would suggest starting from a small amount and keep track of how much you added. Next time you increase or decrease it. I don’t think there is a clear measure on how much salt to add.

  • Rachana August 26, 2014, 7:01 am

    Dear Shilpa,
    My husband really misses those samosas from Patna days. The samosa in delhi is too spicy. Patna samosas are simple and amazingly tasty. Grateful if you could guide me with the recipe, if possible for you. Regards.

    • Shilpa August 26, 2014, 11:16 am

      Sorry, I have no idea

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