Tag Archives: Konkani

Daikon Radish Salad with Coconut (Koshimbir)


Hello! This post features daikon radish that we harvested yesterday at Muir Ranch. The radish is a bit smaller than usually found in the store, but tastes so yummy. It’s funny that one is spicier than the other. When shopping for daikon, look for firm specimens that aren’t too big – stick to less than 12″. I like to see some leaves growing on the end (these can be cooked too – I’ll try to post some recipes for these later) but it’s not necessary. If you do have greens growing on the end, trim them when you get home if you won’t be using the radish in the next day or two. This will keep the radish fresh longer. This goes for beets and carrots too.


The recipe here is based on a the Radish Koshimbir recipe from Rasachandrika, a wonderful and unique Konkani Indian cookbook. I tweaked it a bit by leaving out the typical green chilis and adding cilantro. Koshimbir is made with many other veggies such as carrots, beets and cabbage. Give it a try on a hot day, it’s refreshing!

Daikon Radish Salad with Coconut (Koshimbir)

1 medium daikon radish (about 1 cup shredded)
1/4 cup cilantro leaves, finely chopped
1/4 cup coconut (fresh-frozen or desiccated)
salt to taste
juice of 1/2 small lemon
1 tsp coconut oil (or other oil)
1 tsp mustard seeds

Wash and trim the tip of the radish. Peel the radish and grate into a bowl. Toss in the cilantro, coconut, salt and lemon and stir well. Set aside. Heat the coconut oil in the small pan over medium. When hot, add the mustard seeds. Once they start popping, turn off the heat and immediately pour over the salad.




Tomato & Onion Rice Flour Pancakes

Tomato & Onion Rice Flour Pancakes



Tomato & Onion Rice Flour Pancakes

Monday morning…we’re always running late in our house! Luckily I had already thought about what to make for breakfast last night. So I just had to get up and throw together this simple recipe for instant dosas.

Dosas are similar to pancakes but there are so many varieties and ingredient variations. A lot of times they are made with savory ingredients and eaten with chutney or curries. Dosas are one of my favorite foods to make and eat.

This recipe comes from “The Konkani Saraswat Cookbook” by Asha S. Philar. I made this version vegan, though the original calls for “buttermilk”. Rice flour is available in a lot of health food stores and Asian groceries. You can substitute other veggies such as grated carrots, finely chopped bell peppers, cilantro or radishes. In my version this morning I am using a leftover mixture of tomatoes and onions that weren’t finely cut so my dosas didn’t turn out as round as I usually like…oh well -that’s life!

Tomato & Onion Pancakes with Rice Flour

Makes 10 8″ dosas

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 2 tbsp grated coconut (optional)
  • 1 + cup of water
  • 1 cup of coconut milk, soy milk, buttermilk or other milk
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tomato, finely chopped
  • 1 green chili, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1 tsp oil
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 5-8 curry leaves (optional)
  • additional oil for frying the dosas

Mix the flours together in a bowl. Add the water and milk and whisk to a smooth paste, adding more water to make the batter pourable (it should pour off your spoon in a stream, not drop off in chunks). Add the onion, tomato, chilis (if using) and salt and mix well.



In a small pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the mustard seeds and curry leaves (if using) and remove as soon as the mustard seeds start to pop. Pour into the batter and mix.



Heat a flat skillet over medium heat. When it’s ready, put a few drops of oil on the pan. Spoon about 1/3 – 1/2 cup of batter in the center and smooth around quickly into a circle shape. When using chopped veggies in dosas, it’s difficult to get them perfectly round unless the veggies are chopped very finely. Put a few drops of oil on the top. Let it cook until it starts to get brown and crispy on the bottom. Flip over and cook the 2nd side until brown and crispy. Remove from the pan and serve with chutney.

Breakfast Bread with Coconut

Breakfast Bread with Coconut

Good Morning! Today my Sister-In-Law and I made a breakfast dish called “Bread Usli”. It’s so easy to make and puts to good use any stale or last bit of bread that no one wants to eat! This is a common dish in India, often made for a quick breakfast or snack. There are so many varieties, but we adapted a recipe from “The Konkani Saraswat Cookbook” by Asha S. Philar. It is almost identical to the recipe given to me by my Mother-In-Law many years ago. Hope you enjoy it as much as we did…

Bread Usli

Serves 4

  • 15 slices of wheat or white (a combination of the two is best), chopped into small cubes about 1/2″ x 1/2″ x 1/2″
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp warm water
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp urad dal
  • 2-4 red chilis
  • 5-8 curry leaves
  • 4 tbsp coconut (fresh, thawed frozen or desiccated)

Place the cubed bread in a big bowl. Dissolve the salt and sugar in 2 tbsp water. Sprinkle the water (using your fingers or a spoon) over the cubed bread, mixing the bread cubes so that the water is distributed pretty evenly.

Heat the oil in a large pan (a wok works well) over medium heat. Add the mustard seeds, urad dal, red chilies and curry leaves. When the mustard seeds start popping, reduce the heat to low and add the bread cubes. Gently stir, stir, stir, lifting the cubes from the bottom to the top. Keep stirring until the seasoning is mixed in with the bread cubes. Allow to heat for about 2 minutes over the low flame. When it’s done, sprinkle the coconut over the top and mix in gently. The texture of the bread shouldn’t be crispy or soggy. Serve.

Bread Usli

Deliciously Salty & Spicy Chili Poha

Deliciously Salty & Spicy Chili Poha

Salt & Chili Poha

Hello! Today for breakfast I tried out this yummy recipe from a new cookbook called “The Konkani Saraswat Cookbook” by Asha S. Philar. My husband was flipping through the pages and got so excited when he saw the recipe for “Meet-Mirsange Phov” (Konkani for Salty & Chili Beaten Rice). Apparently it is one of his favorite types of poha, so of course I had to try it out. I have to admit that whenever he gets excited about some Indian food that I have never tried or heard of I get a little bit upset! I ask him in a joking way “Why didn’t you tell me about this before?!?” So this is one of those recipes. If you come across thin poha / beaten rice at the Indian grocery, pick up a bag! You are going to like this one…here is my recipe adapted from “The Konkani Saraswat Cookbook”.

Salty Chili Poha

Serves 2-4

  • 4 cups thin poha
  • 1 dried red chili, toasted in a pan with a little oil
  • 1-2 green chilis (or to taste)
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp tamarind paste
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1/4 cup (or so) of water  (*see note below)
  • 1/4 cup desiccated coconut
  • 1/2 cup frozen (unsweetened) coconut (you can use all desiccated coconut if you can’t get frozen coconut)
  • 2 tsp oil
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 5-10 curry leaves

For the masala: Place into a blender the red chili, green chili(s), coriander powder, cumin powder, tamarind paste, sugar and salt. Add 2 tbsp water to start and grind the ingredients to a course paste. Add a little more water as needed, but try to use as little as possible. When it becomes a paste, add in all of the coconut and grind to a grainy paste (not too smooth, not too course). When done, move the contents of the blender into a bowl. You should have a very thick paste.

Now measure out 4 cups of poha. Do not rinse – just put straight into the bowl with the masala. Start mixing and mixing and mixing. It will take a few minutes. I used a flat rubber spatula to lift up from the bottom, almost like folding into a batter. The poha seems delicate but it isn’t so just mix it up well. Taste for salt.

Now make the seasoning by heating the oil in a small pan. Add the mustard seeds and curry leaves. As soon as the mustard seeds start to pop, remove from heat and pour into the mixture. Mix and serve.

Note that at first the poha will seem raw or cardboardy but as the masala soaks in it becomes a little softer. However, this is a “dry” poha dish, so don’t add any liquid. Just wait for a few minutes for it to pull together before eating!

(*In the original recipe, it specifically states to not use water at all. However, I could not grind the chilis down without adding a little water. I adapted by using dried coconut so that it would soak up the water used in the grinding.)