Monday, February 28, 2011

Broccoli, Carrot and Nuts stir fry

Broccoli, Carrot and Nuts stir fry 

My kids are very picky eaters, its very hard to get them excited about eating always in playful mode either physically or verbally , to get them to quite down for the few minutes while we sit down for dinner is a challenge everyday.

I try to cook what kids like and due to this we (husband and I)  have changed our food habits quite a bit  toned down the spiciness, less curries that are gravy kind its hard to cook for two different groups so we choose the easy way out to eat the way kids prefer.

So today's recipe is one of their favorites and takes me less that 10 minutes from start to finish has a good dose of vegetables and nuts  so it's a win-win for me and the kids.

2 cups of broccoli, cut into small florets
1 cup of carrot chopped finely, frozen carrots can be substituted
1 cup of mixed nuts ( blanched almonds, cashew nuts, chopped pecans)
for seasoning
1 tbsp of oil
1/2 tspn of ginger garlic paste
1 tbsp channa dal
1/2 tspn cumin powder
pinch of pepper flakes
salt according to taste

1. Microwave broccoli and carrot on high for 3-4 minutes, till they turn tender, adjust according to your MV settings
2. Toast the nuts lightly for few seconds and keep aside
3. In a pan add oil and when hot add ginger garlic paste, cumin powder, channa dal and pepper flakes, mix well until raw smell of garlic is gone.
4. Now add microwaved broccoli and carrot and saute for a minute or two.
5. Add toasted nuts and mix well.

Remove from heat and serve. You can add this as a filling to whole wheat tortilla and make it a wrap makes for an excellent lunch.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Leftover Mania - Rajma Chili Soup - Spicy Indian Red Bean And Lentils Soup

Leftover Mania - Rajma Chili Soup - Spicy Indian Red Bean And Lentils Soup

Weekend is almost here and I am looking forward to Oscars, there used to be a time in my life where I would have watched every movie nominated, it's a far cry from that today, however I did watch two of the three movies nominated in the animation category :)

This weekend calls for  snow in bayarea, yes you have heard it right if  indeed it  snow it's going to be the first time experiencing snow in valley for me , looking forward to it.

Today's recipe is a of leftover  makeover of Rajma and other miscellaneous vegetables lying in the refrigerator, I have been cooking since long yet I still can never cook the exact amount, there is always leftovers and most of the time its tossed out, however guilty I feel about throwing out I wish I had other options. Yesterday for some reason made soup/chili with left over Rajma and it turned out delicious,it was a soup kind of night cold and rainy.

1 cup of leftover Rajma (soaked or canned red kidney beans can be substituted)
2 ripe tomatoes
2 tbsp celery finely chopped
any soup flavoring , I used store brought maggi tomato soup flavoring or tomato paste
salt and pepper according to taste
1 tspn of chaat masala

for topping
green onions, avocado, tomatoes, coriander, red onions, bread.

1. Heat a tbsp of oil/butter add tomatoes and celery and saute till they soften
2. Add left of Rajma or canned red beans
3. Add soup flavoring and/or tomato paste.
4. Add water to thin and mix well, adjust for salt and pepper
5. Add chat masala and with a hand blender blend the above, depending on how you like your soup either make it completely blended or leave it chunky the way I like
6. Remove from heat and serve hot.

Add toppings of your choice and one hearty warm and delicious soup is yours to relish, felt so accomplished for using up all the left over sabji and vegetables, small things in life I say :)

btw bread I used was Masala bread from Rangoli, Rangoli is the go to place for sweets in the valley make sure to pick one next time you visit utterly butterly delicious.
Have a good weekend !!

Rangoli Sweets
1584 Halford Ave
Santa ClaraCA 95051

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Rajma & Jeera Chawal , Spicy Red Kidney Beans with Cumin Rice

Rajma And Jeera Chawal - Spicy Red Kidney Beans with Cumin Rice

Rajma and Chawal or Rajma and rice is a punjabi staple , it's what I call comfort food or soul food. It's not as complicated as it seems, with a little prep ahead it takes less than 30 minutes  from start to finish for both jeera rice and Rajma.

Ingredients for Rajma/Red kidney beans curry
1 cup red kidney beans soaked overnight
1 1/2 red onions sliced thinly
2 tomatoes chopped into cubes
1 medium sized potato, peeled and cubed into big chunks
about an inch of ginger, peeled and chopped into pieces
dry ingredients
tbsp of kasoori methi (dried fenugreek)
tbsp red chili powder
tbsp of amchur (dry mango powder)
tbsp of garam masala
salt according to taste
1/2 tbsp turmeric
2 tbsp of tomato paste (optional)

1. In a pressure pan add soaked red kidney beans, potatoes, ginger, turmeric , salt and fenugreek leaves and pour water accordingly and pressure cook till you hear three whistles.
2. While beans are cooking, heat a pan add 2 tbsp of oil, add all the dry ingredients saute for few seconds, then add onions saute till they turn translucent then add tomatoes and tomato paste.
3. Cook covered till tomatoes are well cooked.
4. Allow for the cooker to cool down and then transfer the contents into sauteed tomato and onion paste.
5. Mix well and adjust for salt, garnish with coriander and serve hot

Jeera Chawal - Cumin Rice

Seriously jeera rice takes 10 minutes from start to finish with less than 5 ingredients and tastes out of the world .

1 cup basmathi rice
3-4 bay leaves
5-6 cloves
1/2 tbsp pepper corns
2 tbsp cumin/jeera
2 tbsp oil/ghee (clarified butter)

1 In a heavy bottom pan add oil/butter, add bay leaves, pepper corns, cloves and cumin and saute for 30 secs.
2. Now add cup of basmathi rice and saute till its well coated with oil or butter
3. Add two cups of water and salt and cook covered on medium heat for about 6-8 minutes.
4. Remote lid and mix the contents gently taking care not to break the rice grains.
5. Cook covered for another two minutes.

Remote from heat allow it to cool down and gently toss the rice as you can see if fluffs up pretty well. To make the rice grains not sticky spray pam either while cooking or once after you remove from heat.

Rajma and Chawal comfort food that I can eat any time of the day !!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Quinoa Upma

Quinoa Upma

My current fad for Quinoa is still going strong, I am so in love with this grain, absolutely lost any cravings for rice I had previously, Quinoa keeps me full for a longer times and helps control hunger prangs.

Today's recipe is a variation of classic south indian breakfast Upma substituting rava with quinoa and with generous dose of nuts.

1 cup quinoa 
1 cup frozen peas and carrot
1 small potato peeled and cubed into small pieces
1 onion chopped finely
1/2 tomato cut into small cubes
2 tbsp oil for thadka
1/2 cup of mixed nuts (cashew nuts, blanched almonds, pecans, peanuts)
2 tbsp ginger finely chopped
2 G.chilies cut finely
8 - 10 curry leaves
1 tbsp jeera
1 tbsp urad dal

1 tbsp channa dal
1 tbsp mustard seeds
Salt according to taste
1. Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a pan ,add Jeera , Urad dal, Mustard ,Ginger, G.Chiles, channa dal, nuts and curry leaves, allow mustard to splutter
2. Now add Onions ,Potatoes , Tomatoes and frozen peas and carrots, when onions turn translucent add 2 glasses on water add salt according to taste
3. let water come to full boil then add quinoa and stir well.
4. Mix well and cook covered for 4-5  minutes.
5. Let is cool for 5-10 minutes this will make quinoa fluff up

Sprinkle lemon juice and serve hot with ketchup or just plain. One simple, delious and healthy brunch/lunch or breakfast option.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Curried Spinach Egg Fry - Spinach Egg Burji

Curried Spinach Egg Fry - Spinach Egg Burji

Sun has been playing peek-a-boo off late, we got our first taste of spring last week and this week it's supposed to a soggy one , grrrrrrrrrrr
Hope all of you had a good Valentines and made sure to tell your special ones how precious they are !!

Today's recipe is simple yet packed with nutrition, easy to make and goes well with roti's or rice. So here it is .....

About a 1lb of Spinach fresh or frozen
2-3 eggs
1 red onion finely chopped
2-3 garlic cloves chopped finely
tbsp of cumin powder or garam masala if you prefer
1/2 cup milk , I use 2%
Salt according to taste

for seasoning
1 tbsp jeera/cumin seeds
1 tbsp mustard seed
1 tbsp urad dal seeds
few curry leaves
2-3 red chilies

1. Heat a pan, add tbsp of oil, add all the ingredients for seasoning, add chopped garlic and saute till garlic turns brown.
2. Add finely chopped onion and saute till they turn golden brown.
3. Add finely chopped spinach either fresh or frozen add salt and saute for 2-3 minutes, till the rawness of spinach is gone.
4. Add cup of milk and mix it well.
5. Now break two or three eggs in a separate bowl or you could directly break it in the pan.
6. Either way add cracked eggs and mix well, till egg seems to have scrambled and well mixed with spinach.
7. Add your choice of garam masala or cumin powder and saute for a minute or so.

Remove from heat and serve it hot with roti or rice, excellent protein filled curry.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Tomato ,Ginger & Pepper Rasam

Tomato, Ginger & Pepper Rasam

Just got back normal from a bad week of cold and flu, all those medications sure make you loose your taste buds, it takes few days to get back to routine. My mom mentioned quite a few times that I make pepper and ginger rasam, which would help heal cold so here it is recipe for today.

2-3 ripe tomatoes
about an inch of ginger
tbsp of tamarind paste
1/2 tbsp pepper (adjust according to taste, intent is to have a spicy rasam)
salt according to taste
1/2 tbsp of sugar or jaggery

for seasoning
1 tspn mustard seeds
1 tspn jeera/cumin seeds
1 tspn urad dal
pinch of hing
tbsp of oil/ghee
few curry leaves
3-4 red chilies

1. Boil water and allow whole tomatoes to be cooked for about 30 to 45 seconds
2. Remove from heat and add to iced water.
3. deskin tomatoes and keep aside
4. Blend peeled tomatoes and ginger together using either a hand blender or grinder.
5. Heat a pan add the tomato ginger mixture, add about a glass of water to thin the mixture.
6. Add tamarind paste,pepper,salt ,tumeric and sugar and allow to boil for 3-4 minutes, till raw taste of tamarind is gone.
7. In a separate pan add oil/ghee and when hot add all the ingredients for seasoning and saute till mustard seeds start to pop.
8. Add the above seasoning to boiling tomato mixture.
9. Add generous dose of coriander and serve hot.

Makes an excellent companion with rice, specially during colds when everything seems taste less.

On an other note if you are a regular you must have observed that I changed my layout, looking forward to your comments on my layout it indeed was quite an effort to redo, I am very excited about it hope you guys would like it too.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Monday Cheer

The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer someone else up ~ Mark Twain

                                  (Pic taken by me @San Simeon Beach during Christmas break)

Happy Monday everyone !!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Super Bowl Food- Kick it up a notch will ya !!

Of course had to share my finds with my readers don't I , tried the Masala lentil dip from Trader Joes, loved it adds so much more kicked up flavor to your regular pita chips or tortilla chips.
Few dips blogged previously

My absolute favorite Baked Chick Peas from Trader Joes

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