Monday, May 17, 2010

Guest Post - 11 : Today's Guests - Maya & Lakshmi

Today, we have two lovely cousins from a yummy blog "Yummy'O'Yummy" with us. Both of them holds Masters degree. Now, let us hear from Maya & Lakshmi...

Nithu's Kitchen : Tell us about you.
Maya : I am a homemaker staying in the United States. I was born and brought up in Tiruvalla, Kerala and am a post graduate in chemistry. I got married a year back and now am staying in Seattle with my husband.

Lakshmi : I hail from Mavelikara in Kerala. I am a post graduate in physics and education. I worked as a teacher in a plus 2 school for about 3 years. I got married 2 years back and came to US with my husband. We moved back to Kerala a month ago.

Nithu's Kitchen : Good to hear about you both. How did you girls arrive at the idea of starting a blog?
Maya : I am an absolute lover of good food from my childhood. I was the official taste-checker at home and that was something at which I was really good. I always wanted to try the new recipes that came in Vanitha magazine but my mother being a cleanaholic kept me away from the kitchen as I was (and still is) very messy. After getting engaged my hubby was too scared of my cooking skills that he literally requested my mother to teach me cooking. My mother decided to teach me cooking but by the time I wake up she will be done with breakfast and lunch cooking. So when I got married, all I knew were a few chicken, prawn dishes, fried rice and a few vegetarian dishes but I didn’t know how to make tea or a coffee, cook rice, operate a mixer or a pressure cooker. I landed in US one night in January 2009, and I wanted to have only rice for dinner, after having all those food in the flights! So that night itself I cooked up some stirfry, poriyal, omlette and had them with rice and yoghurt. I could never compromise with food matters. When I started cooking by myself I began to try lots of dishes everyday mostly from VahrehVah and my mother’s recipes. I and Lakshmi used to call every other day and share each others’ recipes. We used to invite friends for dinner every weekend and I would then be busy cooking non-stop for 7-8 hrs. My hubby began taking pictures of all the different dishes I tried and we used to upload and send them to all our friends. Here is the link, you can have a look at it. The dishes wouldn’t be looking very nice but those are my first cookery works. I used to prepare at least one unique dish every day and my hubby was not allowed to have them unless he clicked it’s picture. This continued for 3 months (march – may) after which both of us got bored. Friends started asking for the recipes so my hubby asked me to blog it but I humbly declined as it seemed too big a step for an amateur (and lazy) cook like me who had absolutely no idea about blogging. After about 4-5 months I gathered my nerves and asked my hubby to lecture me about blogging. I shared this idea with Lakshmi and she offered to send me her recipes to try out and then on an impulse I asked her to join me. Lucky me, she said yes and we planned to start our blog on Jan 1st 2010. That didn’t work out because of our laziness and finally we started on the 19th of jan. Both our husbands were really supportive about this. My hubby provided all the technical help to start us off.

Lakshmi : I had learnt to cook while I was small since my mother was a working woman. She was a teacher and there were times when she went off for camps for 10 – 12 days so I had no other alternative than cooking. I also used to help my mother and grandmother in the kitchen and slowly learnt all the traditional dishes of our region. I had great interest in watching kairali cookery show but I had no time to experiment new dishes since I was busy with studies and work. During my studies I was in hostel for more than 4-5 years and I missed homely food like anything. I had lots of friends who used to bring home-made food for me. Their moms were all expert cooks and I got to learn the recipes from other parts of Kerala too. I would say I became really passionate about cooking after marriage. After marriage I got lots of spare time so I began trying out new dishes. My husband had been my greatest inspiration to cook. I was also lucky to get a few friends who had great interest in cooking. We all used to meet every other weekend and try out new dishes. My friends used to compel me to start catering or a blog but I had been too lazy to do all that. It was at that time that Maya invited me to join her to start a new blog. And I immediately said yes. That is how this blog happened. We are still new and learning things. Now that I am in Kerala we hope to post all the traditional dishes of our Central Travancore region over time. We take this opportunity to thank all of you out there for your motivation and support.

Nithu's Kitchen : How you chose this name for your blog?
Maya & Lakshmi : When we started off, we had a name in our mind but it was already chosen by some other blogger. We tried so many names but again they were all already chosen. Then we thought about the word yummy, after all every blogs are about yummy food. We are two people, so we chose yummy yummy. Again that was already chosen so we just put an “O” in between :-)

Nithu's Kitchen : What are your interests apart from cooking?
Maya : My other interests apart from cooking and blogging are travelling, dancing and watching movies especially horror movies :-) My hubby loves long drives and photography. We travelled a lot last summer and are looking forward to this summer to travel to at least some of the places in our list. My hubby is also very interested in watching movies and film making. We have a Netflix membership and watch around 15 – 20 dvds a month not to mention the movies I watch online while cooking :-)

Lakshmi : I used to watch a lot of movies and travel when I was in the United States. My other interests are teaching, dancing and listening to music.

Nithu's Kitchen : Share us an interesting anecdote happened in your kitchen.
Maya : I was once preparing a rajma curry in the evening at around 7 pm. My hubby was really tired that day and wanted to sleep early. I totally forgot about the rajma and we both went to sleep. We awoke hearing the sound of our smoke alarm at 10 pm. The whole apartment was filled up with smoke and the rajma had burnt to coal. It took us 5-10 mts to put off the alarm and I spent hours cleaning the pressure cooker.

Lakshmi : I too have a similar story. I had been preparing black chana curry one day, in between I went to watch a movie and totally forgot about the curry. The smoke alarm went on and I didn’t know what to do. I opened the front door and then the whole apartment’s alarm went on. We had to call 911. The fire force arrived and put off the alarm.

Nithu's Kitchen : What are your favourite food items?
Maya : My anytime favorite food is biriyani especially chicken/lamb and the Kerala sadya.

Lakshmi : I love fish in any form but my most favorite is fish curry and that too accompanied with steaming rice.

Nithu's Kitchen : Who is your best critic about your blog?
Maya : I have lots of friends who share their opinion about the recipes and all. Sometimes I ask them for clarifications on my recipes and taste-testing too. But I would say my best critic is my elder sister Meera. I compel her to come online everyday and give opinion on each and every recipe we post. I would like to thank all my friends who helped us make this better especially Manju, Preetha, Reshmi, Lekshmy, Rajini, Neetha, Shyam and Anjana.

Lakshmi : My hubby and my cousin Priya used to be my best critics but nowadays they both are really busy. So I would say I am my own critic these days :-)

Nithu's Kitchen : What do you have today to share with us?
Maya & Lakshmi : We would love to share the recipe for roasted coconut chutney(chuttaracha chammanthi).

Nithu's Kitchen : Why did you select this today?
Maya & Lakshmi : This is one of our most favorite dishes and it is a favorite of both our families as well. It is an excellent combination with rice and yoghurt. We are pretty sure that anybody who have had it will never forget its taste. It is that delicious. The authentic recipe calls for coconut and dry red chillies roasted in an aduppu(traditional coal stove) and then ground in an arakallu (something like a grinding stone). But here since we have no such option, we pan roast the frozen or raw coconut slices, dry red chillies and grind them in a mixer along with ginger, shallots tamarind and curry leaves. We can assure you that it tastes almost similar to the authentic chuttaracha chammanthi. Many of our friends have given their positive feedbacks on this so we give 100% guarantee that you would love this.

Ingredients :

1. Coconut slices – 1 cup (We use frozen coconut slices. You can also use grated coconut but it tastes better with coconut slices)
2. Pearl onions – 5
3. Ginger – 1 inch piece
4. Curry leaves – 1 sprig
5. Dry red chillies – 5
6. Tamarind – Gooseberry sized or to taste
7. Salt

Method :

1. In a pan add the coconut slices and sauté until light brown at medium heat. Now add the dry red chillies. Sauté until the coconut slices turn brown and the dry red chillies turn crispy. Take care not to burn them.

2. When it cools down grind it together with pearl onions, ginger, curry leaves, tamarind and salt. Add 1-2 tsp water if needed. Enjoy!

Nithu's Kitchen : Thank you girls.

Dear friends, hope you all loved to read about the yummy team and their recipe. If you are interested to be featured as our blog's guest please do mail to


Kiran said...

Nice post.Thank you for introducing Maya and Lakshmi.Very nice coconut chutney from you Maya & Lakshmi.Will tyr it soon.

Vrinda said...

lov their blog..yummy and my fav chammanthi....

Sushma Mallya said...

Such a lovely guest post nithu, today only i got to know their names and i didnt know there are 2 people behind this yummy blog...loved knowing abt them and thanks for this yummy recipe too...

Bharathi said...

Hey Nithu,

Its really nice & interesting to know about Maya & Lakshmi.

Suji said...

Great read up Nithu..Lovely post..Kudos to you, Maya n Lakshmi..

Kairali sisters

Cool Lassi(e) said...

Nice to know all the brains behind the Yummy Team. Hello Maya and Lakshmi, nice recipe for the coconut chutney. Looks yum!

PranisKitchen said...

nithu nice post yarr..happy to know more about yummy team.the coconut dried chutney balls looks so delicious and yummy

Padhu Sankar said...

Dish looks delicious!!Nice to know about Yummy team

Shabitha Karthikeyan said...

Great Knowing the Yummy team..Super post Nithu !!!

Sanyukta Gour(Bayes) said...

great work....good to knw abt the yummy team...talented girls...appreciate featuring the coconut balls...cute

Unknown said...

LOvely post..i always loved the guest posts..which are always presented so nicely...yammy team really deserves to be such an introduction...

divya said...

Nice post.Thank you for introducing Maya and Lakshmi.Very nice coconut chutney from you Maya & Lakshmi.Will tyr it soon.

panchpakwan said...

Lovley post Nithu.
Nice to know more abt Maya& Lakshmi team.

Simplyfood said...

Lovely write up.Nice to get to know fellow bloggers better.

Unknown said...

Thanks a lot for featuring us in your guest post, Nithu..and we wish to express our sincere gratitude to all our fellow bloggers for encouraging newcomers like us..

Unknown said...

Another great guest post Nithu. Love the yummy team blog so loved knowing about them too :)

Mahi said...

Nice chutney and a nice intro! Liked the yummy blog.

Aruna Manikandan said...

Nice guest post nithu :-)

gtyuk said...

coconut chutney looks great; I'd love this with lemon rice :)