Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Water Chestnut Flour (Shingada), Almonds, Walnut and Date Cake (Sugar and Egg free)


Recently we celebrated my mom's birthday. She is a diabetic and can no longer enjoy sweet desserts. All through our growing years, she unfailingly and enthusiastically baked a variety of delicious cakes for us at home. So, I wanted to do something for her this time around. So I literally thought of all healthy things she could eat and baked them into a cake, and that is how this cake was created :) It is diabetic friendly: sugar free, gluten free, and egg free (vegetarian friendly) healthy cake.

Ingredients: Water Chestnut Flour (Shingada or Singoda): 1 cup, Almonds: 5-10, walnuts: 5-10, dates: about 20-25, yogurt: 1 tbsp, baking soda: 1/2 tsp, baking powder: 1 tsp, vanilla essence: 2 tsp, cardamoms: 5-6 pods crushed (optional).

Procedure: Soak Almonds, walnuts and dates in milk for about an hour. Grind to a fine paste (along with the milk they were soaked in - remove excess milk  while grinding - it should be about 3/4th cup while grinding). Grease a baking pan. Sift the Water Chestnut Flour (Shingada or Singoda), add baking powder and ground paste and yogurt. Mix thoroughly. Add vanilla essence and crushed cardamom pods (optional) and mix. Now add baking soda. Mix well and pour into greased pan (I used a loaf pan) and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 35-40 mins. Insert toothpick and check if the cake is done. If not bake for additional 5 mins on 300 degrees F. Let it cool. When the sides of the cake start leaving the pan, flip it over in a flat dish. Cake is ready to enjoy.

Tip: This cake can be made with sugar too if desired for non-diabetic people. It is really healthy. You can add 1/4th cup sugar or 1/2 cup condensed milk since it already has dates. Adjust sugar/condensed milk quantity as per desired level of sweetness. 

Till my next post, take care everyone.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Kalakand Barfi (Ricotta Cheese and Condensed milk - Microwave recipe)


With an ever so busy schedule, it is really challenging to spend a lot of time in the kitchen, especially during Diwali. But my family members have a sweet tooth and love Kalakand barfi, so I really wanted to make it this year. I was inspired by some recipes on the internet for Kalakand barfi made with Ricotta cheese, condensed milk and best of all in a microwave! So here is how I made it after browsing through a lot recipes.

Ingredients:
Ricotta cheese - 15 oz tub, Sweetened Condensed milk - 14 oz (1 small can), Milk powder - 1/2 cup, Cardamom powder - 1/2 tsp, Rose essence - 1/4 tsp, Saffron - 1 tsp crushed strands, Pistachios - 12-15 finely chopped, Almonds - 8-10 - crushed. **Additional sugar 2-3 tsp (I did not add since it was sweet enough for me, but if you feel you need more sweetness, you can add, it is optional)*


Procedure:

  • Take a large microwave safe bowl or container, combine ricotta cheese,condensed milk, milk powder, cardamon powder, rose essence and few saffron strands. Whisk till everything is mixed well without any lumps. (I have a 1200 watts microwave, but you can adjust cooking time according to your microwave wattage). 
  • Microwave it initially for 1-2 minutes, make sure the bowl is partially covered with splatter guard since the liquid boils over and splatters a lot initially. 
  • Check on it and mix well and microwave it partially covered for 1-2 mins, keep checking for boil over and splatter. Repeat 2 more times. 
  • By now, the mixture will start getting thicker. Now you can remove the splatter guard. 
  • Microwave uncovered for 2-3 mins and repeat 2-3 times. The mixture will start turning dry and grainy and will not stick to the bowl. (Keep microwaving for additional minutes, 1 minute at a time till you reach desired consistency)
  • When it reaches almost dry consistency, pour it into a greased container. Pat it to make it even and add crushed pistachios, almonds and saffron strands on top. 
  • Let it set for 30-45 mins, after which you can cut it into squares or any desired shape.

Enjoy quick and easy Kalakand Barfi!


Wishing everyone a very Happy Diwali and a Prosperous New Year 2016, till my next post take care everyone!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Baby Bok Choy, Tofu and Bell Pepper Bhaji


I frequently came across Bok Choy vegetable while shopping at our local Chinese market. One day I just bought it out of curiosity, but had no clue how to use it. I decided to give it an Indian twist and use it for making bhaji/Indian curry. The result was yummilicious. 

The garlic and bell pepper gives it a nice, rich and complex flavor. It cooks down quite a bit so adjust quantity accordingly. It is really healthy and nutritious and has lot of vitamins and is low in calories.

Ingredients: Baby Bok Choy - 5-6 heads (chopped), Green Bell Pepper - 1 chopped, Onion - 1 chopped, Tofu - 1 packet (about 12 oz), garlic - 5-6 pods crushed, tempering - 3-4 tsp oil, 1 tsp mustard seeds, 1/2 tsp asofoetida, 1 tsp cumin seeds, 1 tsp turmeric powder, 1 tsp red chilli powder, 1 tsp coriander powder, 1 tsp cumin powder, 1 tsp - garam masala. Few drops of lemon juice, salt to taste.

Procedure: Heat about 3-4 tsp oil in a pan. When it is hot, add mustard seeds. When they crackle, add 1/2 tsp of asofoetida, 1 tsp cumin seeds, 1 tsp turmeric powder, 1 tsp red chilli powder and 1 tsp coriander powder and 1 tsp cumin powder and 1 tsp garam masala. Add onions and crushed garlic. Saute till onions are a little soft. Add chopped bell pepper and saute for 3-4 mins, add chopped bok choy, stir, cover and cook for 3-4 mins. Add salt and check for taste. Then add cubed tofu, stir cover and cook for 4-5 mins on medium heat. Add lemon juice. Adjust salt if needed. Serve with Roti or side dish for rice. Enjoy!

Till my next post, take care everyone.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Shingada Flour Thalipeeth (Singoda/Waterchestnut Flour Pancake)


Happy Navratri!! This thalipeeth is usually made for fasting. The Shingada or waterchestnut flour makes it a more healthier alternative to sabudana (sago). Sometimes I make it at snack time for my kids if they are really hungry and need some variety. It is very quick and easy recipe, not to say tasty as well.

Ingredients: Singada/Singoda flour (Water chestnut flour) - 1 cup, Roasted peanut powder - 1/4 cup, jeera/cumin seeds - 1 tsp, red/chilli powder - 1 tsp or chopped green chillies - 2-3, salt to taste, chopped cilantro - 1 tbsp, oil - 1 tsp + 2/3 tsp for cooking, Water to mix dough.

Method: Take flour, peanut powder, jeera/cumin seeds, red chilli powder/chopped green chillies, cilantro, salt and little oil in a bowl and mix the dough.
Grease a pan/tava with oil and flatten the dough to make a thalipeeth/pancake. Cover and cook for 3-4 mins on medium high heat and turn over and cook the other side for 3-4 mins. When both sides are cooked, serve it hot with peanut chutney (see sabudana vada with chutney) or yoghurt.

Enjoy and till my next post, take care everyone!!

Monday, September 26, 2016

How to make healthy 'Sprouts' at home



Sprouts ( mod aleli kad dhanya in marathi) are extremely healthy and low in calories and a major source of plant based protein. They are also a source of fiber and other essential vitamins and minerals. They are also good for your skin, eyes and hair, known to boost metabolism and help to protect against many common ailments.

So, how do you make sprouts at home? I got this question from a lot of my friends, after I recently made Misal, so I decided to make this post.

You can make sprouts out of pretty much any kind of grain or legume. The more popular ones are moong (mung, green gram bean), matki (moth bean), dried green peas, horse gram, soy, fenugreeek, alfalfa to name just a few. 

Procedure:
  • First Day
Take desired quantity of legumes/grains (considering that they will double after sprouting). Wash and fill the bowl with lukewarm water till it is at least 2-3 inches over the legumes. Preferably soak them overnight.
  • Second Day
Drain the water and wash the soaked legumes/grains and place them on a colander to drain a bit. After that take a towel or soft cotton cloth and place it inside the colander, and pour the legumes/grains on it. Rinse the legumes/grains thoroughly at least 2-3 times during the day and return them to their sprouting position in the cloth/towel.
  • Third day
You will see that they have begun to sprout. By afternoon or evening, they are ready for use. If the weather is warm, they will be ready in the morning by 3rd day. The length of the sprout should be more than the legume/grain, that is how you know they are ready. 

Enjoy your healthy sprouts in a variety of recipes. I will try to post a few more sprout recipes soon.

Till my next post, take care everyone!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Shravan Ghevda (Farasbeen) or French Beans Bhaji


This is a really quick and simple vegetable or bhaji that you can make on busy weekdays. When I am back from work and really tired, but still want to feed a healthy and tasty dinner to my family, this is my go to recipe.

I usually use frozen french beans (my favorite is french cut green beans from the frozen aisle of the local grocery store - they are nicely shredded up for you) or sometimes I buy fresh ones on weekends and prep and refrigerate them at that time for ease of use during busy weekdays. This is a very healthy vegetable that is high in fiber and rich in vitamins and minerals.

Ingredients:
French Beans or Shravan Ghevda or Farasbeen - 1 bag (just about a lb), Onion - 1 medium cut, shredded coconut - fresh or frozen - 6-8 tbsp, Oil - 3-4 tsp, garlic - 3-4 pods crushed, green chillies - 2-3 chopped (depending on your taste), cilantro - 2-3 tbsp chopped, turmeric - 1/2 tsp, Red chilli powder - 1/2 tsp (optional), sambar masala - 2 tsp, salt to taste, few drops of lemon juice.

Procedure: 
Microwave and cook the french beans or Shravan Ghevda or Farasbeen as per directions on the packet. If you are using fresh ones, cook them till they are soft but not mushy. I usually microwave them (frozen beans) for about 10 mins. Meanwhile, heat a pan and put some oil in it. Add the crushed garlic and chopped onion in it and saute till onion is slightly brown. Add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, sambar powder and a little water (2 tsp) and saute for a minute. Add chopped green chillies and saute for 1 more minute. Now add the cooked french beans or shravan ghevda (farasbeen). Cover and cook for 3-4 mins till everything is mixed properly. Add salt to taste and half of the shredded coconut and few drops of lemon juice. Cover and cook for 3-4 more minutes and add cilantro at the end and some more shredded coconut. Serve with Roti or side dish for rice.

Enjoy your quick and healthy meal :) Till my next post, take care everyone!!

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Spicy Indian Masala Omlette


This is a quick, easy and nutritious recipe for a hearty Sunday breakfast. Our family favorite. The green chillies, onion and cilantro add an Indian touch to the traditional western omelette. I also omit green chillies when I make them for kids so that they can enjoy the Indian flavors of the recipe without the spice. I am not sure how many people remember the catchy tv commercial that used to air in our childhood - Sunday ho ya Monday, roj khaye ande :) Nostalgic memories..... 

Ingredients:

Eggs - 4, Onion - 1 chopped, Cilantro - chopped, green chillies - 2-3 chopped (as per desired level of spiciness), black pepper - 1 tsp, salt to taste, Milk - 1/4th cup.

Procedure: 

Break eggs into a bowl and whisk. Add salt and black pepper and milk and whisk till everything is mixed properly. Add onions and cilantro and chopped green chillies. Heat pan and add a few drops of oil and pour the egg mixture in it. Cover and cook for 3-4 mins on medium heat. Flip and cover and cook the other side for 2-3 mins.

Delicious Spicy Indian Masala Omelette is ready. Serve with toasted whole wheat bread and ketchup.

Till my next post, take care everyone.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Corn and Potato Kabab (Kebab) #MonsoonMojo2


Hello all, I am back after a long break :) I was and still am super busy, but hopefully I will find time to post and visit my friend's blogs every once in a while.

If you want to make something quick and delicious for a casual snack or a party in a jiffy, try making these Corn and Potato Kababs or Kebabs...... (as some like to call it). 


Ingredients:

Fresh Corn/Frozen Corn - 2 cups, Onion (chopped) - 1/2, Boiled Potato - 1, Ginger garlic paste - 2 tsp, Chopped chilies - 2-3 (depending on your taste), Chopped cilantro - 2 tsp, Rice flour or corn flour for binding - 2 tbsp, coriander powder - 1 tsp, cumin powder - 1 tsp, Garam masala - 1 tsp, Fennel powder/crushed fennel (tastes better) - 1 tsp, lemon juice - 1 tsp and salt to taste. Oil to deep fry.

Method:

Coarse grind corn in a mixer - do not make too mushy. Mash the boiled potato. Add this and all the other ingredients to the coarsely ground corn and mix thoroughly. Make cylindrical balls and deep fry them till golden brown. Serve with ketchup!!

Hope you enjoy the crispy kebabs as much as we did!!


Till my next post, take care everyone.


Submitting my entry for  #MonsoonMojo2

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Paneer Tikka Masala


Paneer tikka masala is one of my favorite curries. Love all the tangy, spicy, creamy and delicious flavors in there :)) It has a unique taste due to marination of paneer and veggies. So without any further delay, here is the recipe: (especially for my friends who wanted it that day):

Ingredients:
Paneer - 1 whole block of Nanak Paneer cubed
Veggies - Chopped (cubed) - 1 Large Onion, 2-3 Peppers Green/Red, 1 Tomato (optional)

For curry and marination: Yoghurt - 4-5 tbsp (adjust as reqd), Tomato puree/paste - 1 cup, Onion (large) chopped - 1, Whipped cream - 1/2 cup, ginger garlic green chilly paste, Lemon juice - 1 tsp,  2 tbsp, coriander pwd - 2 tsp, cumin pwd - 1 tsp, Red chilly ped - 1 tsp, Turmeric pwd - 1 tsp, Garam masala - 2 tsp, Chaat masala - 1 tsp, Cinnamom stick - 2, Cardamom - 2, Cloves - 3, Bay leaf - 1, Kasoori methi - 1 tsp, salt as per taste, cilantro to garnish.

Marination:
Paneer cubes
Chopped onion, peppers, tomatoes (optional)
1 Tbsp - Oil, Ginger garlic paste - 1 tbsp, Lemon Juice, Garam Masala 1 tsp, 1 Tsp Salt, 1 Tsp Red Chili Powder, 1 Tsp Coriander Pwd, 1 tsp cumin pwd.

Method:
For marination: Take Paneer, Capsicum, onion, tomatoes (optional) in a bowl. Add marination ingredients and mix. Keep for at least 30 mins - 1 hour. After that heat a pan and grill/cook the marinated paneer and veggies till light brown. If you have skewers, you could grill on barbecue or in oven.

For Tikka Masala:
Heat another pan. Add 3 tbsp of Oil and add the Cinnamon, Cardamom, Cloves and Bay leaf. Now add Chopped onion and fry till light brown. Then add tomato Puree/paste. Add ginger garlic green chilly paste. Fry for 4-5 mins. Add coriander pwd, cumin pwd, turmeric pwd, red chilly pwd, garam masala, and fry. Now add cream slowly. Finally add the grilled veggies and simmer for 3-4 mins. Adjust salt as per taste. Add kasoori methi, sprinkle chaat masala and some more garam masala at the end. Garnish with cilantro and serve with Naan!!

Till my next post, take care everyone.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Fiesta Salad with Creamy Chipotle Dressing


I made this easy breezy, colorful and healthy salad for a potluck recently. I forgot to take a picture that day, but this is an earlier file picture. Everybody loved it and wanted the recipe, so here it is:

Ingredients:
1 Lettuce head, 2 Tomatoes, 2 Cucumbers, 1 can Sliced olives, Corn (cooked if frozen), mixed peppers (yellow, red, green etc), 1 small bunch green/spring onion, cilantro (optional).

Dressing: 1/2 cup Olive oil, for all of these: sugar, salt and pepper, lime juice/vinegar - add to taste, 2-3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (canned) (as per desired spiciness), 1/4 cup sour cream. Blend everything in a mixer.

Topping: Crushed Doritos chips.

Method: Cut all the vegetables and put them in a salad bowl.Feel free to add other vegetables as per your liking. Pour the dressing over them and add crushed doritos. Mix lightly and serve.

The best part of this salad is that it is highly versatile. You can add or delete pretty much any ingredient as per your taste.

Works great for Cinco de Mayo potlucks!!