Friday, February 27, 2015

Palak Raita

Most of us Indians are familiar with the word “raita” but to my surprise, I recently found out that “palak raita” as such is new to some of them. Hence I thought of sharing this side-dish with you all. This is not only easy to prepare but also tastes good with any rice dishes such as pulao, biryani, fried rice or even puliogare to name a few. It's also a good accompaniment to any rotis, phulkas or parathas.

If interested, you can check my other palak (spinach) dishes -  Palak Patradau and Dill and Spinach Curry.



Palak (Spinach) A small bunch
Curd (thick) 1 cup
Salt As per taste
For Tempering:

Oil 1-2 tsps
Mustard seeds 1 tsp
Cummin seeds 1 tsp
Fenugreek (methi) seeds 1 tsp
Dry red chilly 1-2


  1. Pick and wash the fresh palak (spinach). Roughly chop them into chunks. If using steamer, steam them for about 12 mins or if cooking in water, ( use very little water as it leaves its own water) cook till they are wilted.
  2. In the meantime, beat or whisk the curds well and keep it aside.
  3. When the steamed (or boiled) spinach has cooled down, pour the beaten curds over it.
  4. Then add salt and prepare the tempering - Heat oil in the tempering pan and add all the ingredients mentioned under it. When it stops spluttering, switch off the flame and pour the contents on to the spinach and curd mix.
  5. Mix well and it is ready to be served.

Main ingredients
Spinach chopped 
Chopped spinach in steamer
Just removed from the steamer
Curd beaten and kept aside
Beaten curd poured over the steamed spinach

Tempering under process

Tempering added to the above mix
Palak Raita ready to be served

Preparation Time: 10 mins
Cooking time : 15 mins
Seves : 2-3 persons

  • I used one red chilly for tempering. You can use more as per your taste.
  • Curd used should not be sour.
  • Ideal side-dish during the summers.
  • It tastes good when served chilled.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Punar Prathishtha of Venkatramana Temple, Katapady

Last week we returned from our long vacation at our village in Katapady, Udupi district where we attended the “Punarpratishta of Lord Venkaramana” followed by Rathothsav festival or “Teru” as it is called in Konkani language. “Punarprathista” means re-installing the deity in the renovated temple.

I am told that this temple is about 300 years old. It was unanimously decided by the residents to renovate the temple for various reasons. The renovation work started ten months ago and was reopened on 22nd January 2015 by Srimad Samyameendra Thirtha, the junior Swamiji of Kashi Mutt with great pomp and celebrations which lasted for five days from 17th Jan to 22nd Jan 2015. Many dignitaries from the Karnataka Government as well as religious heads from nearby places graced the occasion and were awed by the wonderful carvings on wood as well as stone in the sanctum sanctorum of the temple. The architect 25 years old, happened to be the youngest person to achieve this level of perfection.

We watched the actual ceremony of the “Punar Prathista” on the screen installed outside the temple as only a selected few (one of them was my senior brother-in-law) were chosen to participate in the ceremony.

Here are some of the glimpses of the the renovated “Garbha Gudi” and its peripheri. I regret not having taken our cameras. We took all the photos from our mobile phones. I hope we have done justice to the wonderful sculptures that depicted the “Dashaavtar” the intricate wood carvings and the “Vishnu Sahasnam” engraved on the four walls of the Garba Gudi which is unique to the temple.

Beautifully carved entrance door

The main entrance to the temple
Entrance to the Sanctum Sanctorum
The carved structures on the inside of the dome 

Some of the metal carvings inside the dome
Jaya  & Vijaya at the entrance 

Various carvings in the dome

Wooden carvings at the four corners of the Garba Ghudi walls
Close-up of the wooden carvings


The above 10 stone carvings depicting, Dashavatar (Matsya, Kurma, Varaha, Narsimha, Vamana, Parshurama, Rama, Krishna, Buddha & Kalki) at the front wall of the temple.

The illuminated temple

"Teru" in front of our house "Doddamane" being welcomed with "aarti"

The temple premises lit with hundreds of diyas 

Beautifully done Rangoli

Another Rangoli under progress

During this period everyone who attended the function, were served varieties of breakfast items and sumptuous meals on all the days of the festivities. We all had a wonderful time.