1. What are the measurements used in this blog?
Measurements used in all the recipes, unless otherwise specified
1 Cup = 240 ml
½ Cup = 120 ml
¼ cup = 60 ml
⅛ cup = 30 ml
1 Teaspoon tsp = 5 ml
1 Tablespoon tbsp = 3 teaspoon = 15 ml
2. Can you give exact water and salt measurements in your posts?
I have tried my best to give the details as much as possible for easy understanding, but it's really difficult to give exact measurements for water and salt. So all my recipes will be having "as needed" for these two. Because, it's all about how much its needed while the cooking is in process and your own taste. Also the saltiness vary from one brand to another.
3. Can you give cup measurements for chopped vegetables, onions, tomatoes etc..?
I am really sorry, its really difficult for me to give those measurements in cups, I understand some bachelors need this way, but I can't help!
4. How can I contact you? Can I add you in whatsapp/ skype and other social media networks?
You can drop me a mail at [email protected], I will reply you as soon as possible / within 3 days. And I am sorry I will not add you in my whatsapp/ skype. You can always follow Rak's kitchen in the social media networks, please click on the respective icons in the header to stay connected. Send me messages through that, I will reply you there.
5. What oven you are using? Give some basic tips.
I was using a combination oven (Panasonic Dimensions 4)which has microwave, convection and grill mode in it. All my baking recipes are done with the same oven but in "convection mode". I DO NOT bake in microwave mode unless otherwise specified. Generally people think if its a combination oven with microwave mode, convection mode and grill mode, they conclude I bake in microwave oven. There is a lot of difference between microwave baking and baking in "convection mode" in a combination oven.
Recently (2019) I am using convection oven which do not have microwave option.
6. I am new to baking and wish to own a baking oven. Can you suggest me any oven which will be useful to me?
This is the most asked question to me, first of all let you all know one thing. I am also like any one of you, a beginner in baking, who bakes very very very rarely. The oven I was using is not the one I bought, its left by the previous owner of the house I am staying, so I don't even have a manual for it. All I do is only through experience. So If you ask me which oven should you buy, I am really helpless. I just ask my friends what ovens they use and just reply you. So since I am using Panasonic, I know that's good, plus, I will suggest what 2 of my other friends use, thats what I can help about it. You can always browse in the internet before buying one and ask for assistance in the shop about the latest and efficient models depending upon your requirements. I am sure the person around that area can help you most than me.
6. You are not mentioning the preheat temperature in all of your posts, how will I know what temperature I should preheat?
Generally, ovens should be preheated to the specified Baking temperature. That is if the cake is baked at 190 deg. then the oven should be preheated for the same temperature. Also there will not be any specific time for this in my model. I will start the empty oven at the needed temperature and continue heating, when the oven reached the specific temperature, then it will beep indicating that the temperature is reached, then I proceed baking. Every oven is different, so please go through your owner's manual for exact way to preheat your oven.
7. I mailed you/ asked you in comments section a query, you never replied for it?
I am really sorry about that, probably I have missed to notice your mail/comment, after all I am also a human being like one of you. If I see your query un answered any time, I will reply you! Sometimes, if the query has been answered already in the above comments so many times, I might have ignored it, or there might be an answer in the post itself. So read the post thoroughly before leaving a comment or a mail.
8. I am a beginner in cooking. How you/ your site will help me?
If you are a complete beginner who has never cooked- or even tasted- Indian food, don't worry. This website describes step by step preparation with pictures as much as possible, using precise measurements. I only write and post what I experience while cooking, so that it will be helpful to others and sometimes me too, if I want to cook it again 🙂 Still Indian cooking is not inclined towards precise measurements. It all comes about practice. Cooking everyday or as much as possible continuously will teach you more than any other. So if it doesn't turn out properly for the first time, don't worry, you will sure get it right as you keep on cooking.
9. You have mentioned "temper" in most of your Indian recipes. What does it really mean and how to do it correctly?
Temper in south indian cooking means : Heat oil in a pan/ Kadai until it hot. If you drop the mustard seeds, it should pop immediately. Pop the mustard seeds until the last one. Otherwise it will be bitter. So make sure the oil to be hot as you drop the mustard seeds, it should pop (crackle) immediately. Then add the other items one by one and fry until golden. This will be happening soon, so keep everything ready to avoid burning. In North Indian cooking, just heat oil/ghee and add the whole spices and give it a fry.
10. Can you explain the equipment you use in your cooking?
You don't need any special equipment for Indian cooking, how ever, here are some equipment that I use :
Kadai / Irumbu satti (iruppu satti) : This is a must in Indian cooking for great results. Can be any metal : non-stick, indolium or cast iron.
Non-stick pan, sauce pans, very sharp knife, rolling pins and boards, mixie, grinder, blender, steamer, idli pot, dosa pan (non sitck or Iron), paniyaram pan (non stick, iron or indolium), different types of ladles.