Savoury Welsh Cakes, with a Sri Lankan Twist

During my recent visit to Cardiff, I had the opportunity to go on a lovely complimentary Welsh food tour with Sian Roberts of Loving Welsh Food. Sian shared her recipe for orange and cranberry Welsh cakes with me. When I returned home, I wanted to make some for my family. However, given that no-one at home takes sugar, my mother and I decided to put a Sri Lankan spin on the welsh cake recipe and we came out with the Savoury Welshcakes. It was fun to make and the results of our efforts tasted like a cross between a roti and a cookie.

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It’s been a while since I posted a recipe here so I decided to share this recipe in time for Christmas.

Wishing you all, the best of the Season, and do let me know if you have tried putting your own spin on a Welshcake!

It’s been a while since I participated in Angie’s Fiesta Friday so bringing these savoury Welshcakes over to Fiesta Friday #152, co-hosted by Jhuls and Ginger.

Savoury welshcakes.JPG

Savoury Welshcakes, with a Sri Lankan Twist

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • Self-raising flour – ½ cup
  • Margarine – ¼ cup + 1 tsp
  • Mixed grated and chopped vegetables – carrots, leeks and chillies – ½ cup
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Method

  1. Sieve the flour into a mixing bowl and add a pinch of salt and pepper.
  2. Add the margarine and mix the flour and margarine.
  3. Stir-fry the chopped and grated vegetables with 1 teaspoon of margarine for about 2 mins.
  4. Mix in the lightly stir-fried veggies to the crumbled flour and make a dough. If you feel the dough is a bit dry or is breaking off, add a teaspoon or two of water or milk.
  5. Roll the dough into a log shape. Wrap with a cling film and refrigerate for 30 mins to an hour.
  6. Slice the dough and cook on a flat pan or griddle, a couple of mins each side.
  7. Serve the snack with a cup of Sri Lankan tea.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan, inspired by Sian Roberts’ recipe for Welsh cakes.

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Jaggery Chip Coconut Cookies

I am happy to announce the launch of my travel article apps on GPSmyCity and an app giveaway of one of my articles, valid this week only until August 7th. Please download the GPSmyCity master app first to access the free upgrade for my article and check out what additional features GPSmyCity offers to what is already out there.

To celebrate this launch, I am sharing a delightful cookie recipe of my mother – her delicious jaggery chip coconut cookies. So, do try out this cookie while you check out GPSmyCity and the free travel article app.

cookie 18.JPG

Bringing these cookies over to Fiesta Friday #131, co-hosted by Su and Laura.

Jaggery Chip Coconut Cookies

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • Jaggery chips – ¼ cup
  • Coconut – ¼ cup, freshly scraped and toasted
  • Flour – ½ cup
  • Butter – ¼ cup
  • Vanilla essence

Method

  1. Mix the flour and butter.
  2. Add the jaggery chips, toasted coconut and vanilla.
  3. Chill the dough for 15 to 30 mins.
  4. Slice dough and bake at 180C for around 15 – 20 mins.
  5. Serve with a cup of Sri Lankan tea.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

 

A Guest Post for Eid: Wattalapam or Steamed coconut pudding

Thank you, Indu, for inviting me to guest post during your Sri Lankan culinary journey. I am sorry that I had not been able to share a recipe then but I figured better late than never, when I sent you this post for Eid. Thank you so much for posting it and sharing it on your blog!

Indu's International Kitchen

Wattalapam(Coconut Custard Pudding)Happy Eid to all those who celebrate! Today marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting.  I sincerely hope that the new year will usher in peace and happiness for everyone and reduce the suffering that we have been recently witnessing across the globe. Life is simple and let’s keep it simple. Live and let live.

Anyways, today’s post is a guest post from a co-blogger and a good friend Ahila.  Ahila blogs at ‘ A taste of SriLankan cuisine‘ where she blogs authentic Sri Lankan recipes of her mom. When I had done my virtual tour of Sri Lanka earlier this year, I had asked Ahila if she could do a guest post. But she had been very busy with work and other engagements and so she was unable to do one at that time. But now she reached out to me when she finally had…

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Wattalapam Jelly Pudding

As I mentioned in my post on Wattalapam cake last week, my mother has been making a series of Iftar treats, several of which are her twists on the traditional Wattalapam pudding. Continuing with the theme of Iftar, today’s recipe is another twist on Wattalapam – my mother’s wattalapam jelly pudding.

Wattalapam Jelly 1.jpeg

I tried to make it once last year, following my mother’s recipe I had shared on this blog a few years back. It went quite well till I removed the cooked, fragrant pudding mix from the stove. I made the mistake of mixing the agar agar into the pudding mix, while it was still quite hot, due to which the pudding never thickened further even after being in the refrigerator for a whole day.

When I mentioned this to my mother recently, she immediately made this the following day making sure I saw the entire process especially when to mix the agar agar into the pudding mix.

Hope you enjoy this delicious pudding recipe! I am taking this dessert over to Angie’s Fiesta Friday #126 and for the first time to Cindy’s Gluten free Fridays #201.

Wattalapam Jelly Pudding

  • Servings: 2 or 3
  • Difficulty: average
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Ingredients:

  • Coconut milk – 1 cup, thick
  • Egg – 1
  • Jaggery – ½ to 1 cup, depending on taste
  • Cardamom – 3 or 4, crushed
  • Vanilla extract – 2 tsp
  • Flavour-less jelly mix or Agar agar – 1 ½ tsp
  • Hot water – 3-4 tbsp

Method

  1. Mix the coconut milk and jaggery.
  2. Lightly whisk the egg before adding the jaggery-milk mixture. Blend the mixture well.
  3. Add the crushed cardamom and vanilla extract to the mixture.
  4. Cook the pudding mixture on low heat, stirring continuously, for about 10 mins.
  5. Remove the thickened mixture from the heat and keep aside to cool to at least 50% what it’s heat was when removed from the stove. This is an important step.
  6. Mix the jelly or agar agar powder with the hot water and let it cool slightly.
  7. Beat the jelly mix into the cooled pudding mixture.
  8. Cool and refrigerate.

Wattalapam Jelly 5.jpeg

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Vadai with Sambal

I have been enjoying writing on my other blog, Perspectives Quilt, this month reminiscing about past travels. I have also just opened up a Pinterest and Instagram account, both of which I had been avoiding not only because I was busy but also because I am not a good photographer. However, since opening both accounts last week, I have found that I pay a little more attention to whatever photos I do take. I know I haven’t been doing justice, with my photos, to the delicious food that my mother has made though I have been diligently recording and sharing her recipes through this blog. I have resolved to try and work on my food photography skills a little, where possible.

So, when my mother made some vadai for tea this evening, I decided that it would be a good time to start experimenting with natural light and angles. Nothing major. Just a series of photos turning my little bowl, with my teatime snack, around. This is the photo I ended up satisfied with, after dozens of photos, which I then applied an instagram filter on.

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Vadai with Sambal

What do you think? Does this photo make you want to have some vadai now?

Well, whether it makes you want to try some right now or not, please do try out my mother’s famous (among family and friends) recipe for homemade vadai with sambal. They are delicious and lovely to share at Iftar parties as well!

I am bringing this over to Fiesta Friday #124, initiated by Angie and co-hosted this week by Lindy@Love in the Kitchen and Liz@Spades, Spatulas & Spoons.

Vadai with Sambal

  • Servings: 10
  • Difficulty: advanced
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Ingredients:

  • Urad dal/ black gram – 1 cup, skin removed
  • Green chillies – 2, chopped
  • Onion – 1, medium sized and chopped
  • Curry leaves – 2 sprigs
  • Coriander leaves – 1 tbsp, chopped
  • Baking powder – 1 tsp (optional)
  • Low fat oil (sunflower or canola) – ½ litre (for deep frying) + 1 tsp (for sauté)
  • Salt, to taste

Sambal:

  • Freshly scraped coconut – ½ cup
  • Red or Green chillies – 2, chopped
  • Onion – ¼, chopped
  • Ginger – ½ “ (optional)
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig, chopped
  • Salt, to taste

Method

  1. Soak the black gram, without the skin, for 3 – 4 hours.
  2. Grind the soaked black gram, adding a little water, to prepare the thick vadai batter.
  3. Heat 1 tsp oil in a pan and lightly sauté the chopped onion, chillies and curry leaves.
  4. Transfer the contents of the pan and the coriander leaves to the batter mix and add salt to taste. If you prefer, you can also add 1 tsp baking powder.
  5. Mix well and keep aside for 5 mins.
  6.  Heat the oil in the pan for deep-frying.
  7. Take a piece of banana leaf or something equivalent, dab some water on the surface and put a spoonful of batter onto the leaf. Shape it into a round or elliptical shape with a hole in the middle, like a mini doughnut.
  8. Transfer to the oil pan, 3 to 4 at a time, and fry until golden brown on both sides.
  9. Mix and grind all ingredients for the sambal and add salt, to taste.
  10. Serve the vadai with sambal and some Sri Lankan tea.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.

Salad Colombo

Since there were a couple of different mangoes in the house, I felt like using some in a salad. I was also curious about trying out tea in a salad dressing so concocted this – Salad Colombo. Why Salad Colombo? Because I used locally produced ingredients from different parts of the country brought together in Colombo. So, why not Salad Colombo? 🙂

Salad Colombo

I am taking this crunchy, tangy, bitter-sweet salad over to Angie’s FF#122, co-hosted this week by Aruna@Aharam and Mollie@The Frugal Hausfrau and for the first time, the party at Throwback Thursday #44, hosted by Quinn@Dad What’s 4 Dinner, Mollie@The Frugal Hausfrau, Carlee@Cooking with Carlee, Meaghan@4 Sons ‘R’ Us and Alli@Tornadough Alli.

I have been listening to Coldplay the whole day so decided to feature a song I liked.

Hope you enjoy the salad and the featured song for this week.

Salad Colombo

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • Lettuce leaves
  • Mango – ½ (large) or 1 (small)
  • Pomegranate – 2 tbsp

Pomegranate and lime infused Orange pekoe tea dressing:

  • Lime/ orange juice – 1 tbsp
  • Pomegranate juice – 1 tsp
  • Tea –  1 – 2 tsp
  • Salt and pepper, to taste (optional)

Method

  1. Clean and chop up the lettuce leaves and arrange on a plate or bowl.
  2. Add sliced mango and pomegranate to the plate.
  3. Prepare the salad dressing by preparing a strong black tea and transferring about 2 tsp to a little bowl.
  4. Add the freshly processed pomegranate juice to the tea. Let it sit for a few minutes before adding the lime juice. (I prefer lime to orange juice for the dressing)
  5. If you wish, add salt and pepper, to taste. I didn’t add any in my version preferring the tanginess of the lime to be enough but my mother preferred adding a pinch of salt and pepper.
  6. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and serve immediately.IMG_0234

 

Palmyrah Root Snack

One of our neighbours brought us some boiled palmyrah roots from their recent trip to Jaffna. My mother decided to make a snack that her grandmother used to make her during her childhood. So, today’s recipe is a palmyrah root snack or ‘panang kilangu urundai’. I am bringing this snack together with some music to Angie‘s Fiesta Friday #117, co-hosted by Mollie and Scarlett.
IMG_0118Today’s music feature is on the Carnatic progressive rock band, Agam, which is based in Bangalore. While the band has been around for a decade or so, I only heard their music when they played at the MTV Coke Studio. ‘Malhar Jam’ is the clip that introduced me to their music.

The second music clip is called ‘over the horizon’. I came across this Malayala song, which I liked, while listening to some of Agam’s music on their youtube channel.

Hope you enjoy both the snack and the music!
panag kilangu

Palmyrah root snack

  • Servings: 3
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • Palmyrah root (panang kilangu), boiled – 1 cup, chopped
  • Grated/ scraped coconut, fresh – ¼ cup
  • Green chillies – 1 or 2
  • Onion – ½
  • Pepper – pinch
  • Salt, to taste

Method

  1. Boil the palmyrah roots. Trim the edges and chop it up.
  2. Add chopped boiled palmyrah root pieces to a dry grinder together with the freshly grated coconut, chopped green chillies and onion.
  3. Grind the mix and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Form little balls of the mixture or in a mold and serve as a snack, to be eaten immediately.

Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.