Chettinad Chicken

For paste
1 tspn each of coriander seeds, cumin & fennel seeds
3 no. red chillies
1" piece of cinnamon stick
2 cardamom pods
2 cloves
2 tspn poppy seeds
4 tspn coconut
3 garlic
1" ginger
4 small onion or 1/4 chopped big onion

For Sauteeing
Curry leaves
Star Anise - 1
Onion - 1 large
Tomato - 2
Chilli powder - to adjust your taste
Turmuric powder
Chicken - 2 pounds or 1 kg

Dry roast all the ingredients given above for paste until it gives out a nice aroma. Grind into paste when cool.
In a pressure cooker season the curry leaves; star anise & kalpaasi. Saute the onions &  tomatoes. Add the cleaned chicken pieces & saute them with some salt till raw smell from the chicken goes off. Now add the ground paste, turmeric powder, chilli powder & saute them for 2 more minutes. Add water according to the consistency of the gravy you desire. This dish normally has a semi gravy(not too runny) consistency.  A teaspoon or two of yogurt can also be added at this stage to soften the chicken. Pressure cook in medium for 1 whistle. Open the cooker when pressure goes off and add some lemon juice & garnish it with coriander leaves. Enjoy the chicken with rice or roti. It goes well with almost anything.

Rasam powder

Red chillies - 4-5 nos
Coriander seeds - 2 tbspn
Toor dal - 1 tbspn
Channa dal - 1 tbspn
Black pepper - 2 tbspn
cumin - 2 tbspn
Turmeric - 1 1/2 tspn
Asafoetida (Hinge) - 1 tspn
Fenugreek powder (Methi seeds) - 1/4 tspn
Curry leaves

Dry all the ingredients under sun light (if possible) except for the powders & grind them till they become coarse. If you can't dry them under sun, dry roast just the curry leaves till it gets crispy & turn off the heat & add the remaining ingredients. Let them sit in the skillet  for some time. Your rasam powder is ready. The picture show above is not the actual quantity. It is just for picture purposes.

Paruppu podi

Toor dal - 1/2 cup
Black pepper - 1 tspn
Hinge - 1/2 tspn
cumin seeds - 1 tspn
red chillies - 2 nos
garlic powder -1/2 tspn
curry leaves

Dry roast all the above ingredients separately except for garlic powder. Grind the dry roasted ingredients together with salt & garlic powder. Paruppu podi is ready, so simple, isn't it? Store the podi in an airtight container. Podi will be fresh for 3-4 months. You may consume it by mixing it with rice & ghee.

Tea Masala Powder

Dry ginger powder - 2 tbspn
Black pepper - 1 tspn
Cinnamon - 1 inch
Cardamom - 1 tspn
cloves - 3 nos
Nutmeg powder - 1/2 spoon

Grind all the above ingredients together in a mixer or blender. Add 1/4 teaspoon for 2 cups while tea is boiling. Store any remaining masala powder in an air tight container for future use.

Door draft stopper

Things needed
Closely woven fabric
Pipe insulation - 2
Sewing machine

Measure the length & width of the door. Measure the diameter of the insulation. Fold the fabric lengthwise. Cut the fabric to the door's measured length plus 2 inches for seam allowance. Multiply the diameter of the insulation by 2 & add the width of the door + 1 inch for seam allowance. Measure this width from folded side & cut the fabric. Now sew the top & side of the fabric to make it into a pocket. Flip the pocket inside out. Insert the two insulation & make a stitch in the middle so that the insulation won't move back & forth.

Barley Tea

Barley tea is known as Horicha in Korea & Mugisha in Japan & China. Asians drink this tea to cleanse their blood & to calm down the nervous system. It also aids in relieving constipation & indigestion. It is made by roasting whole barley & it has toasted cereal flavor.Aside from being a popular comfort food throughout the world, barley is highly regarded for its many healthful properties. Studies have indicated that barley has the capacity to lower blood cholesterol and help moderate blood glucose levels. It is high in fiber, rich in vitamin B, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, and is a source of calcium, protein, iron and phosphorus.
Roasted barley tea is a very popular hot weather beverage that’s noted for cooling down the body and cleansing the system. Barley-based teas are used as treatment for hemorrhoids, inflammatory arthritis and are believed to reduce toxicity and side-effects of radiation and chemotherapy.
For treating fever this tea should be sipped cold.For inflamed mucous membranes I find it is more soothing when taken warm. Because barley contains hordenine, a substance noted as useful treatment for asthma and bronchitis, it can help bring relief to sufferers.

Roasting Barley
Wash the whole barley in water, drain it & spread it in a towel to dry for sometime.You can roast it either in skillet or in oven. If you choose oven, spread it in a cookie sheet & put it in the oven at 350 degrees till the barley gets evenly browned. If you choose to do it in the skillet, dry roast them at medium heat till you get the desired color. The color can vary from golden brown to coffee brown. Darker the color,  stronger the flavor. After it cools down, store it in an air tight container.

Making Tea
Add 2 teaspoons of  roasted barley per liter of water & boil it. Let it steep for some time & strain the tea & drink it with honey or sugar.