Tapioca pearls (commonly called ‘sabudana/sago‘ in India) are a very good source of carbohydrates. Most people in India eat sabudana on fasting days (as a vrat staple). But nowadays people enjoy various sabudana dishes in breakfast, snacks, lunch and dinner.Continue reading
Dosa is another gem coming from South Indian cuisine with an equally strong standing in rest of Indian states. For all my global friends, Dosa is essentially a rice and lentil fermented crepe. Masala Dosa is simply the filling based version of the plain Dosa. Dosa/Masala Dosa is best enjoyed with Sambhar and Coconut chutney – made perfectly, the combination is a bliss for any food lover !
Continuing my focus on South-Indian delicacies, this post today covers another quintessential dish of South Indian cuisine – Sambhar. Sambhar is a nutritious dish made up of tuvar/arhar daal (types of lentils) and mixed vegetables. You can use your own choice of vegetables in the Sambhar and make it healthy as per your preferences. I have made the Sambhar Masala Powder at home too, so that we have our own healthy Sambhar ! South Indian households consume Sambhar nearly everyday; it is served with idli, dosa, rice, vada, upma etc.
My health-freak husband, as you all know it 🙂 , bought a whole lot of green vegetables over the weekend for a cleansing/detox diet. However, since I did not do it with him this time 😉 , his diet also went out in 1 day 😜 . As a result, I had much greens in my fridge. So, I picked some of them last night and turned out a super healthy and tasty curry – Chickpea and Kale leaves curry.
Rajma (red kidney beans curry) comes from North India, specifically from the state of Punjab, and is omnipresent in eateries of all shapes and sizes. Rajma is essentially the Hindi name for red kidney beans. Rajma curry is prepared using a spicy onion-tomato gravy. People generally prefer this curry with rice as a quick bite, as evident from the consumption of Rajma-Chawal (Chawal is the Hindi name for rice) in Northern India.
Matar paneer is the most common form of paneer dish available in almost all Indian restaurants – big or small. It is a delicious curry made from soft Paneer (Cottage Cheese) and Matar (Peas) in a mild spicy tomato curry. It is a very simple, quick, tasty recipe which seems to be is loved by everyone. Today I have made Matar Paneer with only 1 tsp of oil but there is absolutely no compromise in taste and colour.
Broccoli is a very nutritional vegetables, full of many essential vitamins, minerals and low in calories. However today I have used the stems (Danthal in hindi) of Broccoli, which generally goes in the bin, to make Broccoli Stem Parantha. I am sure my previous dishes using Broccoli (Broccoli Parantha, and Broccoli Kofta Curry) would have at least made clear its rich nutritional value. Apart from these 2 recipes, I also make a Broccoli dry curry on a regular basis in my home ( I will post the recipe soon 🙂 )
Yes, you got it right 🙂 This is the continuation of my winter enjoyment theme. I am presenting my ultimate-winter delight -Gajar Ka Halwa (known as Carrot Pudding in English). Gajar ka Halwa has been a part of my family’s new year celebrations since my childhood, and it is the same with my husband’s family. I can safely say that I have successfully managed to follow this tradition post my marriage, as both of us (my husband and me) really relish this super-dessert.
With Christmas being just around the corner, the whole environment has turned real Christmassy. Just observing the whole festive spirit/theme, I simply cannot stop myself to be a bit merrier and feel enjoyed with some good cakes and muffins. So, my dear friends, let’s start rolling in this spirit with freshly baked Eggless Whole Wheat Carrot Muffins !
Winter seems to be on full swing here as temperatures are touching the 0°C mark. Harping on the need to eat sweet rich food with the objective of both enjoying the cold weather and also to feel some warmth, my darling husband asked me to make Coconut Burfi over the weekend. Getting two points in one shot (satisfying his demand, and presenting it to all you guys) 😊, I have prepared Coconut Burfi without khoya in a very easy way. I have made this Burfi with sugar so there is no hassle to make any form of sugar syrup.
Going by my darling daughter’s favourites, and to ensure that she eats without much fuss, I try to use Matar (Peas in English) in most of my curries. On these lines, Kadhai Matar (Green Peas curry) is a very quick, easy, nutritious and a real tasty curry. This triggered last night in my kitchen when my little angel asked me as to what I was preparing; I posed a question to her instead asking what does she wants. And the reply was “I want to eat Matar” 🙂 The usual Matar Paneer immediately came to my mind, but I was in not really in the mood to eat Paneer; and thereby the idea came to me to make a Matar/Peas only curry – and here I present the output as “Kadhai Matar”.
Back to my love for street food/ similar savoury snacks – I would like to admit that this is pure experiment borne out of the love for taste :), and something which I have named as Baked Pinwheel Snack / Baked Samosa Bites / Samosa Bhakarwadi. The best point of such snacks is that they could be enjoyed in most of the seasons, and without much of a guilt. Now if the season is of winter, then nothing could beat them with a hot cuppa tea/coffee.
Continuing my traditional Indian winter specials and in accordance with demand from friends, this post covers another great Laddu that is undoubtedly my hubby’s favourite – Gaund ke Laddu. The logic of consuming these during winters is on the same lines as of Methi ke Laddu – getting the much required warmth and strength during the cold season. However one of the biggest difference/advantage of Gaund ke Laddu is that these could be consumed by all age groups, unlike the Methi ke Laddu which are usually meant for elderly people.
The super-food Avocado is mostly eaten plain, in salads, as a dip (most famous one is Guacamole) or in the form of shakes. But today I have given this amazing fruit an Indian twist – I have made Avocado Parantha😊. Obviously it is super-healthy, one that satisfies the Indian palate, and defintely a great way to add avocado in our meals. You can even give this as a lunchbox to the kids as the Parantha remains soft and good nutrients will get consumed without any significant effort.
Its breakfast time again 🙂 and I present another healthy Indian flat bread made with Spinach. This flat bread is called “thepla” (in the local dialect of the Western Indiuan state of Gujarat) and is a very healthy option for all times – breakfast, lunch or dinner. Thepla originates from the state of Gujarat, and can be termed similar to Paranthas. The main difference is that thepla is thin, with its dough kneaded with spices and yogurt while Parantha is comparatively thicker and its dough is kneaded with water without any spices.
For all my global friends, Kadhi (it is a Hindi word) is a spiced yogurt sauce thickened with Chickpea flour (gram flour/ besan). It is quick and easy comfort food in India, which is also very light, healthy and tasty. I have gone ahead and combined this light beauty with the more nutritious Spinach (Palak in Hindi), resulting in Spinach Kadhi. I am sure there are some people who may not like to have Spinach on its own – this could be one of the ways of getting this group to eat/like Spinach 🙂 ; I have already covered another way using Spinach Parantha, Spinach Kofta Curry.
This is back to basics for me – as this dish (again) comes from my native state of Rajasthan 🙂 I am sure all of us are aware of Fenugreek seeds (or Dana Methi in Hindi). However I am not so sure if this particular recipe has ever moved out of Rajasthani households; I say so as even my beloved hubby, a staunch Rajasthani, was not aware of this. Perhaps the bitterness of these seeds may have stopped people from experimenting with it. But that stops now, with this post 😉
As a true North Indian, I have to say that Dal Makhani is my favourite daal. For all my friends out there, Daal means lentil, and Makhani refers to butter (or buttery) thus making this lentil creamy, rich and heavy. I have been preparing Daal Makhani for the past couple of years but in my own healthy way – I have replaced the cream with milk & yogurt, and butter with olive oil. This is the way I prepare my Dal Makhani at least once in a month, but eat it twice (same daal on the next day) as I feel the taste reaches a new zenith on the next day 🙂 . My today’s post is this healthy version of Dal Makhani.
Yes, it’s breakfast time once again 😉 and today’s healthy start of the day is Yogurt (Dahi in Hindi) Sandwich. I am sure all of us would have had sandwiches of some shape/form. I am also certain that all my fellow kitchen cooks would have surely done experiments on the basic sandwich as per taste/requirement. Keeping alive the streak of innovation, I am today presenting a light, healthy and refreshing sandwich involving Yogurt. Needless to say, the inclusion of some of my favourite vegetables and yogurt makes this a real good start to a lovely day (Amen!). It is also a real quickie in terms of its preparation, thus making it ideal for breakfast/snack.
Malai Kofta is a rich and a bit sweet (mildly) Indian curry. The name of the curry gives away its constituents – Malai is the Hindi word for cream and, Kofta refers to fried dumpling balls. The dumplings are usually made up of potatoes, with or without cottage cheese. The use of cream and frying the dumplings is what makes this curry rich. I have today prepared my own version of this curry but have tried to be on the healthy path by using less of the heavy ingredients; I have used only one tsp of oil, have baked the dumplings instead of deep frying, used more cottage cheese, used less of potatoes, and have omitted the cream.
Khichdi is a very simple, light, healthy and easy dish prepared in almost all Indian households albeit in different names. Khichdi is the food of choice for Indian people who are ill and/or who want to have something light but nutritious. Khichdi is also prepared during Navrata (Durga Puja) celebrations.However people do not generally have Khichdi as part of their regular meals and I am definitely one of them.
Yes, I understand that even though I go on saying healthy eating/lifestyle, I tend to come back with Indian dishes which are more of carbohydrates 🙂 In my defence, I would say that the mantra to a healthy lifestyle is eating a balanced diet, of which carbohydrates are an essential building block!!
At least for me it is a daily challenge to feed my 2.5 year old fussy angel a meal that she would love to eat; at the moment, she seem to have real sweet tooth, just like her father. Furthermore, I have to give her variety in her meals while not compromising the nutritional aspect. On these experimental lines, I have today made a twist to the simple omelette by adding oats, and have delivered it to my daughter’s plate in different shapes. And yes, she finished it quickly and happily 🙂
Having gained a few kilos/pounds over Diwali, I am now determined to get back on the healthy wheel 🙂 Hence this post covers another great nutritional dish using my regular/one of the favourite vegetable – Broccoli.
Broccoli is a very healthy vegetable and one that is full of nutrition. But broccoli is still trying to find its place in Indian kitchen due to its different taste and a slightly pungent smell. Most of us (Indians) seem to be oblivious to the place of Broccoli in our modern diet. Broccoli is rich in many essential vitamins and minerals, and is also very low in calories. It is a great source of vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B6), Iron, Magnesium, Potassium, Zinc in addition to fiber, folate, and lutein.
Curry leaves (kadi patta in Hindi) are normally used as a spice in Indian cuisine, mainly to give a distinct flavour to the dishes. I have mainly used curry leaves in upma, daal and select vegetable curries. But today I have went ahead and have prepared a curry leaves chutney; yes, you have read it right – a chutney. This chutney is very different and superb in taste.
My darling daughter loves black-eye beans very much; so much that she even eats them without any garnishing – simply boiled. She probably got this from her father (my husband) for whom black eye beans are a must to maintain his fitness regime. So this curry is a regular feature in my household – I usually make it once every week/10 days, if not more.
I love black chickpeas (kala chana) and so black chickpea with rice is one of my favourite combo. I usually make black chickpea (gravy one) and, plain rice separately; and enjoy them by mixing them together. However today for the first time I made it this Pulav and it was too good. It is quick, easy and a tasty recipe.
Most people use cucumber in salads and/or in raita (dip). I was also part of this group till marriage. I was introduced to this curry for the 1st time at my husband’s place. I have to admit it – it was a lovely surprise to see cucumber in curry form; and it was indeed tasty and, a quick one to turnaround when in hurry.
For the benefit of everyone, Pepper is also popular as Bell pepper or Capsicum. This Post is based one of my Mumma’s hit dish – she used to cook green peppers with chickpea flour so perfect that whenever she was cooking them, our neighbours would call in to demand some for themselves; they used to state that the aroma was simply irresistible.
Most people use tomatoes to make gravy; some also use them as a (minor) component of any curry or a chutney. However I have used tomatoes as the main part of today’s post – the tomato-peas curry. It is a very quick, super easy and lovely sweet / spicy curry. My hubby loves this curry so much and so I always make this curry as a mains not as a side 🙂
Bhakarwadi is a fried savory snack that has a spicy and tangy stuffing, rolled into a dough and, sliced into small pieces that look like pinwheel cookies. Bhakarwadi is a quite known in Western India, particularly in the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat. The best part of this snack is that it has a very good shelf life – it can be stored at room temperatures for around a month.
I believe that some people in India have a perception that Aubergine (Brinjal/Eggplant) has no benefits or is of no good. This may be because in Indian language (Hindi) it is called Baingan, manipulated in local dialects to Be-gun , meaning no good – this is certainly so wrong.
Me and my hubby are health conscious (well, try to be) so we generally avoid eating maida / all-purpose flour; and then it struck me – to make wholewheat Kulcha instead of the regular (maida) Kulcha. Generally kulcha is made in the clay oven (Tandoor) but I made it on a skillet (tawa), and it was very soft n tasty ! It was my first attempt at making whole wheat Kulcha and, it got great response from my friends and family. Hope you guys also like this recipe.
Upma is a regular breakfast dish in my household. Undoubtedly it is an healthy, quick and easy recipe. I have now made it in many different ways but today I am presenting the post on the basic/original upma with the touch of Turmeric (haldi).
Kadhi is a yogurt gravy with a little bit of chickpea flour, tempered with some spices. There are different versions of kadhi in each and every state of India – Gujarati kadhi, Punjabi kadhi, Rajasthani kadhi etc.
For the benefit of everyone, Laddu is mainly a round sweet ball which is very famous sweet/dessert in India. Laddu has been an integral part of any Indian celebrations, whether it was a wedding or big ceremony or as sacred prasad.
I have seen/observed that many people don’t like Spinach – my hubby being one such example 😉
Green vegetables should be a part of our meal but it seems hard to get some people to have spinach – especially men n kids 😉 For all these folks, I have today prepared Spinach Koftas – no, these are not the regular fried koftas. This is the baked version from my side – I mostly try to avoid deep frying. These green beauties (spinach kofta) have resulted in the delicious Baked Palak Kofta Curry !!
For the benefit of all, Nankhatai is a tea time snack that originated in the city of Surat, Gujarat. Essentially, it is an Indian short bread / cookie / biscuit.
The name Nankhatai is a combination of the Persian word ‘Nan’ (meaning bread) with ‘Khatai’ (meaning 6). A bread which made up of 6 main ingredients – semolina, chickpea flour, all-purpose flour (maida), sugar, butter/ghee and, nuts (almonds/pistachios). But nowadays there are many different versions of Nankhatai.
I have always fallen back on typical Indian snacks like samosa, kachori, chat, fritters etc., when I wanted the taste and had the time to prepare. Around a month back on one evening when the London weather suddenly turned rainy, it made me crave for some new snack. I wanted a snack which was spicy, tangy but not the regular Indian snacks. The curiosity in me arose and, then came to my mind – McDonald’s Veg Pizza McPuff.
Poha came into my breakfast life from my marriage. I know and accept that Poha in its original form itself is a light and healthy. But I got really bored eating the regular Poha twice a week that I desperately wanted to experiment. And then I came across this super-healthy recipe.
After making the Rasogullas, I didn’t wanted to discard that “protein and calcium rich” whey. So I thought why not make a soup of it – does it sounds wierd? Well, it’s a very quick, healthy recipe and uses only 3 ingredients. Believe me – the soup is very tangy, perfect bit spicy n refreshing.