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One of my favourite south Indian breakfast is this paniyaram. Unlike most homes where it is made of rice flour or a dosa batter, I make mine with sprouted moong (green gram) with no rice at all. That does make it a longer process, almost 5 days, but if your home is like my home, which always has sprouts it’s easy-peasy.
The most difficult thing about being on a diet is staying away from breads, cakes, cookies and everything else that comes out of an oven! But dieticians also give you cheat dates…and I made the most of it with this Chocolate Sandesh that has more proteins than fats!
I actually made a sugar-free low-fat milk version for the husband, but a full-fat and sugared version for the girls at my workplace! This dish is turned around in less than 30 minutes, that is if you’re making cottage cheese too, otherwise it takes less than 10 minutes!
And you might think I’ve gotten completely carried away with my need to eat and produce healthy food! How can that weird combination even work! But it does. And what I haven’t added in that mighty long title, is that the ragda was made with sprouted white peas. don’t look at me in disdain! try it and decide for yourself. It’s chaat with the same flavours we all love just super healthy and protein heavy!
It’s not often that i read a veggie recipe and get inspired to try it out immediately. But last evening a friend posted a recipe of oats and semolina dhokla–(steamed cake), and that kind of tickled my senses. Plus I have been accused of step-motherly treatment towards Indian food by a very dear doctor friend! I love to cook healthy and i find it really tough to make oil free Indian food, but yes I will try get back into R&D and split the oil away from the masalas and work on it Ash.
The idea for this recipe was inspired from Masterchef Australia. They often cook their meats (or proteins as they are called) with whole masoor (lentils) and I’ve wondered what kind of a combination that was. My mom does use a mix of three dals, which include masoor dal, when she’s cooking mutton on the bones, but just masoor? Umm, it needed to be tried out.
Since I wasn’t too sure of the marriage of flavours, I went back to my bible, the Food Thesaurus. The combination didn’t exist. Should I or shouldn’t it. I have never been one to shy away from experimentations. So out came the dal and the chicken. What followed thereafter were pure instincts. And am I glad I did try this one out.
This is a breakfast dish you will find in every Gujarati home. It’s simple, easy to make, can be churned out in 30 minutes and what’s more can be created out of as many different kinds of veggies as you wish. What’s more since it is traditionally steamed before it is sautéed, it can be made in advance and sautéed just before you are ready to serve it with a dollop of green chutney.
It’s been a crazy two weeks. I’ve been attempting to pack all my belongings into cartons to move home. Though I’ve moved less than a kilometer away from where I stayed earlier on, the process has been cumbersome, fatiguing and has washed me out of every ounce of energy. So when we did move and I started cooking in the new kitchen, instead of the traditional sweetmeat that is supposed to be cooked, I made this super healthy Barley Upma! It brought back some spring to my steps.
This is one of those evergreen recipes that are passed on from mother to daughter or son and from there on to the next generation. I however happened to get it some 20 years from a chef, whose name I sadly can’t recollect anymore, but he worked at the Taj property in Periyar, Kerala. Of course he used the freshest produce possible (plucked off the tree and dried in his own backyard) whereas I had to go to the closest mall!
We were recently invited to a Onam Sadya where my friend had doled out close to 15entrée all by herself and fed 10 hungry mouths! My…was it a feast for the kings. My only contribution was the Sugar-free Seviya Payasam or Kheer as the rest of India likes to call it.
Where my weekend meals are all about fun, flair and proteins, my weekday meals are generally put together without much of an ado. Some weeks ago a friend commented on the fact that I didn’t have enough vegetarian stuff on my blog…the next Sunday was thus dedicated to this friend. Though recipes for everyday meals come without a blink of an eye, when you want to take it a notch higher, you need a recipe. Indian food is very precise. An extra teaspoon of a particular spice can change the end product, and taste.