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Sunday, December 14, 2014

LEMON RASAM

LEMON RASAM

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup tuvar dal (or masoor dal or yellow mung dal) 
juice of 1 lime
1 tomato - crushed 
a pinch of asafoetida
1/2 bunch coriander leaves
salt to taste

To temper:
1 tsp mustard seeds
2 tsp ghee or oil
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
a few curry leaves

Rasam Powder  2 tbsp
( In case you don't have Rasam Powder , go ahead and use cumin powder and black pepper powder )


METHOD:

Wash and cook tuvar dal till tender
Mash or blend it
Add tomato,masala powder,asafoetida,coriander leaves and salt to taste.
Add 3 cups of water.Bring it to a boil and let simmer for 5 minutes.
Add lime juice and remove from the stove.
Temper with mustard and cumin seeds
Serve hot


NOTE: It helps cut down on the cooking time to almost half if dal is washed and soaked for half an hour or a couple of hours. 

Parathas

PARATHAS

Simple Indian Flat Bread

Parathas are so simple to make that one need not buy bulk produced Naan or Pita bread. These can be made in minutes and fits into an incredibly low budget.

This recipe will yield 4 to 6 Parathas.

One must be brave and try to make it at least once !

 Ingredients:
  1. Whole Wheat flour - 2 cups
  2. Vegetable oil - 2 tbsp to add in the flour
  3. Oil to shallow fry - a few tbsps at the most
  4. Salt to taste - 1/5 tsp should be enough
  5. Water


Method:


  1. In a deep bowl, add flour ,salt and 2 tbsp oil. Mix well with your fingers.
  2. Keep adding a little bit of water and kneading until the dough has a soft pliable consistency.
  3. Cover with a tea towel and leave it aside for at least 10 minutes. 
  4. Apply little bit of oil to your palm and knead the dough for a minute or so.
  5. Divide into 4-6 equal sized balls.
  6. Heat a griddle on medium heat.
  7. Coat each ball in flour and roll out into rounds.The thickness depends on your liking.
  8. Cook one side, flip it over, smear a little bit of oil. 
  9. Flip it again and smear oil on the other side.
  10. Press with a ladle each time .
  11. Cook until light brown spots appear on each side.




GAAJAR HALWA

GAAJAR HALWA
( CARROT HALWA )
A very simple dessert and healthy too !
Great with vanilla ice cream.


INGREDIENTS:

Carrots - 500 gms  Peeled,washed and grated
Milk     -  1 Litre
Sugar   -   to taste
Cardamom powder - 1/2 to 1 teaspoon ( more if you prefer )
Ghee (clarified butter )  -  4 Tbsp ( less if you want to cut down on fat )


METHOD:


  1. Heat ghee in a non stick pan. Add carrots. Stir for a minute.
  2. Add milk.
  3. Cook in milk on medium to low heat until thick consistency.Keep stirring every few minutes so that it does not stick to the pan.
  4. Add sugar. Mix. Cook further until moisture evaporates.
  5. Add cardamom powder just before removing from the fire.
  6. Mix well.

If you like, you can add kesar (saffron). It should be soaked in a little bit of milk and then rubbed with fingers to release the colour and fragrance.
Pour it in right at the end when you add cardamom.

GLUTEN FREE GRAINS

                                                         GLUTEN FREE GRAINS



I have compiled together information about gluten free grains  in an effort to help one find it simpler to figure out the options when on a gluten free diet.
In an upcoming post, I will suggest how one can replace wheat based recipes and adapt it to suit a gluten free diet.

Please note that all varieties of LENTILS  are GLUTEN FREE.
  1. RICE
  2. WILD RICE
  3. OATS
  4. BUCKWHEAT
  5. QUINOA
  6. PEARL MILLET
  7. SORGHUM
  8. TEFF
  9. CORN
  10. RAAGI
  11. WATER CHESTNUT 
  12. CHICK PEA FLOUR

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Capsicum with chick pea flour



CAPSICUM WITH CHICK PEA FLOUR


This is one of my most favourite dish. It is yummy with plain chapati and kadhi or even with just rice and kadhi or any simple dal.    
Certain ingredients are optional because it's quite normal that when one does not have a full fledged pantry, all the ingredients might not be available. It is absolutely fine to go ahead and try a recipe with whatever ingredients you have handy because home made food is way better than any restaurant food.

I will be posting variations of this dish in my upcoming posts.

Peppers or Capsicum are alkaline . They are very good for the metabolism.

INGREDIENTS:                 

  • 2 Peppers - same colours or different ones
  • 2 tablesppons oil (vegetable or olive oil)
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds (optional)
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds (optional)
  • Asafoetida (Hing) a pinch  ( optional)
  • 2 tbsp chopped coriander (optional)
  • 1-2 tbsp dessicated coconut ,fresh or dry (optional)
  • 4 tbsp Gram flour (Besan)  
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 2 tbsp Coriander Cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp Red Chilly powder
  • 1/2 tsp Salt (more to taste )


METHOD:

  1. In a bowl, mix gram flour, 1 tbsp oil ,turmeric,chilly powder,coriander cumin powder and salt. Make sure there are no lumps.
  2. Wash and cut the peppers into cubes
  3. In a non stick pan, on a medium heat, add 1 tbsp oil
  4. When the oil is warm,add mustard seeds and sesame seeds.Let them crackle or change colour 
  5. Sprinkle asafoetida
  6. Add the peppers and stir well.Cover with a lid and cook for 2 minutes. Uncover and stir once again. Reduce the heat.
  7. Sprinkle  the gram flour mixture evenly.Cover and cook for further 5 minutes.
  8. Mix well. Cover and cook further for 2 minutes
  9. Sprinkle chopped coriander and shredded coconut 
  10. If you like to add more salt to your taste , sprinkle at this stage and mix well











Thursday, May 15, 2014

                                         BANANA BREAD (FAT FREE )





Ingredients:

  1. 2 cups flour ( white flour or wholewheat or any concoction. Should be 2 cups )
  2. 1/2 cup applesauce ( Recipe not yet posted on my blog)
  3. 4 lage overripe bananas - mashed
  4. 2 eggs ( or 4 egg whites )
  5. 3/4 cup Brown Sugar ( Or part any sugar and part honey, or just honey )
  6. 1 tsp baking soda
  7. 1 tsp vanilla 
  8. 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  9. 1/2 tsp salt



Method:


  1. Preheat oven to 175 C
  2. Mix the flour,baking soda and cinnamon in a large bowl.
  3. Mix brown sugar ( or an alternative) and applesauce until smoothly blended.
  4. Add 2 eggs , vanilla and mashed bananas to the sugar mix and blend well.
  5. Add wet ingredients to dry and fold until all ingredients are wet.
  6. Grease a 9 x 5 inch bread pan and pour the mixture into it.
  7. Bake on 175 C for 60 or 70 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. 
  8. Cool a bit before serving.


Notes:

  1. If really overripe bananas are used , the amount of sugar or any other sweetner can be reduced.
  2. Part of the flour can be replaced by powdered oatmeal.
  3. In order to bake  healthier ,you can try mixing parts of buckwheat flour or ragi flour or even spelt flour . Just make sure your measure of flour does not exceed 2 cups.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

KHEER

INGREDIENTS:

MILK     1/2 Litre
RICE       1 or 2 Tbsp
SUGAR   2 Tbsp  ( or more to your taste. Can be replaced with your choice of sweetner)
ALMONDS  1 Tbsp sliced thinly lengthwise
PISTACHIO- unsalted-  1/2 teaspoon chopped (Optional)
CARDAMOM POWDER  1/2 tsp

METHOD:


  1. Wash and soak rice for 20 minutes.  (If you don't have time,no need to soak!)
  2. Add to milk and simmer. 
  3. Stir few times till the rice is cooked.
  4. Add sugar.Cook further for 3 minutes.
  5. Add almonds , pistachio and cardamom. Stir and cook for 2 minutes.
  6. Serve hot or cold as desired.

Option:
You can use vermicelli ( found in the pasta section in the supermarkets) instead of rice.


Sunday, February 9, 2014

Broccoli and Courgette Soup

Another request from my niece.

Ingredients:
Broccoli    400 gms       Florets cut in halves . Stalk can also be used ,remove hard bits.
Courgette  150 gms       Washed and cut into chunks.No need to peel.
( Or bottle gourd / Doodhi/Lauki in case Courgette is not available. Need to peel and dice.)
Onion          1 medium , peeled and chopped
Celery  greens or stalks      1/2 cup  washed and chopped
Olive Oil    1 tbsp. 
Salt to taste
Pepper powder to taste
Boiling water     3 mugs / 500 - 600 ml




  1. In a heavy based pan , on a low heat, heat the oil. 
  2. Toss in the onion. Stir.Cover and cook for 2 minutes till it softens.
  3. Add the celery. Stir.Cover for 1 minute.
  4. Add the broccoli and courgette. Increase the heat. Mix well.
  5. Add the boiling water .Mix. 
  6. Cover and cook for 8-10 minutes till the vegetables soften.
  7. DO NOT OVERCOOK. Try to retain the green colour of the broccoli .
  8. Blend with a hand mixer.
  9. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  10. If you think the soup is too thick, add some more water.


Brown Bread

I have posted this recipe following my niece's request. I hope this will initiate her into baking bread at home!
I will post a picture pretty soon !


Ingredients:

Wholewheat flour    500 gms
Dry Yeast                    7 gms
Salt                           1 tsp.
Clear Honey             1 Tbsp.
Olive Oil                   2 Tbsp.

 

  1. Take  a large bowl . Add the flour,yeast and salt  into it and  mix together with your hands. 
  2. Stir 300ml warm water with the oil and honey, then stir into the dry ingredients to make a soft dough.
  3. Place the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead for 5 mins, until the dough no longer feels sticky, sprinkling with a little more flour if you need it.
  4. Oil a loaf tin and put the dough in the tin, pressing it in evenly. Put in a large plastic food bag and leave to rise for 1 hr, until the dough has risen to fill the tin and it no longer springs back when you press it with your finger. ( Alternatively, you can divide the dough and roll  into small balls and lay them on a baking tray , cover with a moist kitchen towel or cling film and leave to rise for an hour.) The dough might rise quicker in warm and moist conditions.
  5. Heat oven to 200 C . 
  6. Scour across the top of the loaf with a sharp knife, then bake for 30-35 mins until the loaf is risen and golden. ( For smaller breads, it will take much shorter time. Keep an eye after 18-20 minutes.)
  7. Tip it out onto a cooling rack and tap the base of the bread to check it is cooked. It should sound hollow. Leave to cool.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Caramel Custard (Eggless )

This is a very simple caramel custard recipe.
I am posting it in a jiffy on a dear one's request.


Ingredients:

  1. Sugar       3/4 th cup
  2. Milk         1/2 Litre
  3. Cream      250 ml
  4. Vanilla Custard Powder      2 tablespoons
Method:


  1.  On a low flame , melt sugar in a sauce pan until completely dissolved, while stirring constantly till it changes colour to slightly caramel (brownish)
  2. Remove pan from stove. Add half of the milk i.e; 250 ml. Stir gently with a whisk until homogenized.
  3. Bring caramel and milk mixture to a boil  while gently whisking.
  4. Dissolve the custard powder to the remaining milk and add to the boiling mixture. 
  5. Cook further for 5 minutes on low flame or until custard become thick . ( Its advisable to read the pudding powder packet instructions.)
  6. Keep the custard aside to cool down.
  7. Mix cream well .
  8. Serve chilled.
Alternatively, you can add powdered sugar and vanilla essence to the cream and beat it well. Serve the custard topped with the cream or on the side with a thin wafer biscuit.


Thursday, January 30, 2014

Chinese Vegetable Fried Rice with Stir Fried Greens






ChineseCabbageBroccoliStirFry


Thursday, January 16, 2014

BRUSCHETTA

BRUSCHETTA


Bruschetta can be made in minutes. Easy and tasty. Can be eaten as a starter or a quick snack , way healthier than snacking on  crisps or cookies !
In case you don't have baguette or ciabatta , no need to go shopping. Any bread will do. Students have no time to waste shopping when they are busy studying !
Dry toasts are great too when you are so hungry !

Ingredients:
  1. 1 Bread -Any which is convenient : White or brown or mixed grains French Baguette  or  Ciabatta
  2. 500 gms Tomatoes ( any which is easily available. In summer, I love to use cherry tomatoes)
  3. Fresh Basil leaves - 6 to 8 leaves
  4. Extra Virgin (or any) Olive oil - 1 tbsp
  5. Balsamic Vinegar - 1 Tsp
  6. Garlic - 2 cloves - finely chopped or sliced
  7. Salt and freshly milled pepper - to taste
  8. 1/4 cup olive oil (of which use according to your liking)

Method:


  1. Turn on the oven to 180°C to preheat.
  2. While the oven is heating, chop up the tomatoes finely. Put tomatoes, garlic, 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar in a bowl and mix. Add the chopped basil. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Slice the baguette diagonally into about 1/2 inch thick slices. 
  4. On one side of each slice  apply olive oil using a pastry brush. Place on a cooking sheet, olive oil side down. You will want to toast them in the top rack in your oven, so you may need to do these in batches depending on the size of your oven. Once the oven has reached 180 C , place a tray of bread slices in the oven on the top rack. Toast for 5-6 minutes, until the bread just begins to turn golden brown.
  5. In case you don't have an oven, you can toast the bread without coating it in olive oil first. Toast on a griddle for 1 minute on each side. Take a sharp knife and score each slice 3 times. Rub some garlic in the slices and drizzle half a teaspoon of olive oil on each slice. 
  6. Arrange the bread on a serving platter, olive oil side up. Either place the tomato topping in a bowl separately with a spoon for people to serve themselves over the bread, or place some topping on each slice of bread and serve. If you top each slice with the tomatoes, do it right before serving or the bread may get soggy.
Serves 6-10 as an appetizer. Or 3-4 for lunch (delicious served with cottage cheese and a salad of your choice on the side.)













PACHADI

A South Indian Variation Of Raita




Ingredients:

Yoghurt - 250 ML
Onion - 1/2 finely chopped
Tomato -1/2 finely chopped
Green Chillies (Optional) - finely chopped
Fresh Coriander (Optional)- finely chopped
Salt to taste
Cumin powder(Optional)- 1/4 tsp
Chilly powder(Optional) - A pinch 




Method:

Mix all the ingredients together with a fork or a whisk.

As simple as that !

Can be eaten as a dip if you wish.

Great with any Indian meal.