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Upawasacha Dosa ani Ratalee!

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Another variety to keep the boring menu off while fasting are the dosas, not the regular ones but the ones made of Samo seeds or Vari or upawasacha bhaat. Simple yet flavoursome. This one was suggested by my Ma , as she was worried about my fast, that’s her love as always. Anyways, here’s is my take on dosa ani Ratalee for the Navratri !

Ingredients:

Dosa – Samo seeds 1 cup soaked for half an hour, freshly grated coconut 1 tabsp, green chilli’s 2/3, ground peanuts 1 tabsp, curds 1 cup, lemon 1 tsp, cumin seeds 1 tsp, salt to taste, ghee 1/2 tabsp.

Ratalee – sweet potatoes 1/2 kg, salt and freshly ground pepper, butter 1 tabsp.

Method

In a blender take the soaked and then drained samo seeds, add curds, lemon juice, coconut, peanuts, green chilli’s, salt and cumin seeds. Grind it to fine consistency. Heat a non stick griddle. Pour the batter with a laddle in a circular motion to make thin dosas. Drizzle a tsp of ghee and flip it over. Cook it till it turns golden. Serve hot with Ratalee. 

For the Ratalee, simply boil or bake the sweet potatoes till tender,  slice them, season it with salt and pepper and add a dash of butter. Enjoy the crispy dosa and sweet potato bhaji.

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Shingada Halwa 

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Shingada (water chestnut) is a very healthy option for those following fast, especially Navratri. Since the body receive less of nutrition and one feels low during the fasting period, use of shingada is very beneficial since it is full of protein, vitamin and minerals. It is low in fat, but high in potassium, gluten free and fibrous fruit. Shingada is indigenous in India and is used to cure many disease. So many benifits and when it is used in making halwa the taste too is enhanced. I make a simple halwa, thanks to my Rajputana roots I prefer using Jaggery over sugar. So here is my take on this power packed quick halwa.

Ingredients

Shingada atta (water chestnut flour) 1 cup, Jaggery 3/4 cup (I use the organic crushed one), 2 large tab so ghee, 2 cups milk, 1 cup water, cardamom powder 1tsp, a pinch of saffron, nutmeg powder 1/2 tsp and a pinch of pink salt. Almonds chopped for garnish a handful.

Method:

Heat ghee in a pan and roast the atta till it changes it’s colour to a slightly darker shade and becomes fluffy. Add milk , saffron and stirfry with a whisk continuously. Add Jaggery and some water, cover it and let it cook for 5 mins on low heat. Add cardamom powder, nutmeg powder and garnish it with almonds. Sprinkle a small pinch of salt, to cut the sweetness and clear the palate, mix well and enjoy it hot or cold.

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Chilli Chicken Fry – Indian Chinese

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Indian Chinese is not only popular but is demanded in every household. One of the most popular chicken dish in this cuisine is the Chilli Chicken. While making Indian Chinese one should keep the time frame in mind, that is cook just before serving and for a shorter period and always on high flame. Spicy, sweet and tangy is polished off in minutes… everytime I make it.

 Ingredients:

Boneless chicken 500 grams cut into small pieces, ginger and garlic finely chopped 1 tabsp each, soy sauce 1tabsp, oyster sauce 2tabsp, salt to taste, pepper 2tsp, chilli flakes 1tsp, whole dried Chilli 3/4, honey 2tabsp, cornflour 3tabsp, milk 1/2 cup, ginger garlic paste 1tabsp. Oil for frying and 2/3 tabsp for stirfrying . Onions and Capsicum chopped in chunks 2/3 each.  

Method:

Marinate the chicken in ginger garlic paste, add salt to taste, sprinkle cornflour and add milk. Mix well and keep it aside for a few minutes. Milk gives a creamy soft texture to the chicken. Heat oil in a wok and deep fry the marinated chicken. Frying should be on high flame and not more than 2minutes each batch of chicken. Remove the oil and keep only a couple of tabsp oil in the wok. Keep the heat of high flame. Saute chopped ginger garlic chillis and Capsicum onions for 2/3 minutes. Add soy sauce, oyster sauce, salt and pepper. Stir fry for another minute. Add the fried chicken and coat it with the sauce , ginger garlic, capsicum onion mixture thoroughly. Drizzle honey and stir-fry for another minute. Serve hot with rice. 

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Muffins can be Healthy too!

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When you get this strange and strong cravings for something sweet but have to watch your weight at the same time, this recipe is the perfect one to curb your cravings and satisfy your sweet tooth. This recipe has all the goodness of healthy elements plus have skipped the naughtiness of sugar, butter and refined flour. A wholesome experience indeed! 

Ingredients: (makes 15 muffins)

Oats 2cups, Greek yoghurt 11/2cups, honey 2 tabsp, ripe bananas 2, eggs 2, cinnamon powder 1tsp, pink salt 1/2 tsp, vanilla extract 1tsp, baking powder 2tsp, choco chips 1cup.

Method:

Mix bananas, yoghurt, honey and eggs in a blender. Take a bowl and mix the dry ingredients like the oats, cinnamon powder, salt, baking powder and chocochips. Fold in the blended mixture slowly and add vanilla extract. Preheat the oven at 180 degree for 10 mins. With the help of a spoon fill the lined muffin tray upto 3/4th. Bake it for 18/20mins on 180 degrees.

Another option one can use the same mixture for pancakes. 

Enjoy the Healthy treat!

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Tart with a healthy twist!

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Sunday is the binge day where in we all relish desserts. Most of the time it is either the Gaylord (Churchgate) or COO – Country of origin (Napeansea Road). We just end up eating as my friend David says “Trash” which is refined flour and sugar. Keeping the Healthy aspect in mind I made these tarts, using the 50:50 ratio…. Healthy : Trashy all I can say.  So here is my take on the Tarts. 

Ingredients:

Shortcrust pastry : (8tartlets)

250 grams multigrain atta /flour, 250 grams refined flour /maida, Butter 150 grams, cinnamon powder 1tsp, brown sugar 1tabsp and salt half a tsp. Milk 2/3 tabsp for binding.

Filling :

Cream cheese 2 tabsp, Greek yoghurt 2/3tabsp, whipped cream 2 tabsp, melted white chocolate 2/3 tabsp, fresh mulberries 2cups or if mulberries not available take strawberries and finely chop it

Method:

Short crust pastry : 

Chop the chilled butter into small cubes and in a big mixing bowl combine it with the maida and multigrain atta. Do not over work the process , use minimum touch and bring it to a sandy texture as fast as you can. Season with salt. Add sugar and cinnamon powder. Now bring it to a tight dough consistency by adding a tabsp of milk at a time. Roll the dough and cut as per the the size of the tart dishes. Cover the base and sides of the shells evenly and keep it to cool in the fridge for 20mins. Prick it with a fork so that it doesn’t fluff up. Bake for 20 mins at 200 degrees. Once baked, keep it on the wire rack to cool.

Filling

In a glass bowl, simply blend in the cream cheese, yogurts and whipped cream. Drizzle and stir the melted white chocolate. Make a nice velvety mixture. Now add the mulberries. The mulberries are very delicate fruit, so it will immediately start oozing out its juice and colour. Fold in lightly and fill in the cooled tart shells.  

Enjoy the tarts with 50% less of guilt. 

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Shevgachya Shengachi Daal

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Shevgachya Shengachi/Drumsticks dal is a typical Maharashtrian delicacy.  It has all the factors to complete a meal, very comforting and satisfies all the taste buds since it is spicy, sour, sweet and tangy.

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Ingredients:

Tur dal / Bengal gram 1 cup,oil 1 tabsp, Ginger finely chopped ½ tsp, garlic crushed 1 clove, Cumin seeds ½ tsp, Mustard seeds ½ tsp, Asafoetida ½ tsp, curry leaves 8 -10, green chillies slit 2/3, jaggery(Gul) 1 tabsp, kokum 4/5, turmeric powder ½ tsp, salt to taste, ghee 2 tabsp, drumsticks (shevgachi Sheng) 2/3 whole (peeled and cut into 4 inches lengthwise), freshly grated coconut 1 tabsp, chopped coriander leaves 1 tabsp.

Method:

Pressure cook the washed dal with some water, turmeric powder, asafetida and a tabsp of oil till soft.  Heat some ghee in a wok and tamper the cumin and mustard seeds, add the green chillies, curry leaves and stir fry for a minute. Add ginger garlic and the drumsticks, stirfry for another minute, pour 100 mil of water and cover it with lid, allow the drumsticks to cook. Now add the cooked dal , salt, kokum, jiggery and blend it well. If too thick in consistency add another cup of water. Let it boil and blend well. Garnish it with coconut and coriander. Enjoy it with Bhakri or Bhaat and get the ultimate comfort feel.

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Pizza Bianca

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Understanding the dynamic lifestyle and dietary changes coupled with stressful work schedules means that a family need added nourishment o combat daily challenges.  The Food Bloggers Association India and ITC group threw us a challenge with this Review Box. Aashirvaad Atta, one of India’s most trusted Atta brands in the country is committed to help the families with wholesome meal. Aashirvaad Atta with multigrain promises the goodness of six different grains – wheat, soya, channa, oats, maize and psyllium husk providing an added advantage over regular atta.

Aashirvaad the pioneer and market leader in the packaged atta segment has developed Aashirvaad Atta with Multigrains to address this aspect providing an uncompromising taste of rotis, with the wholesome goodness of grains. The extra fibre makes the food easier to digest and the extra protein in the atta helps to build strength.

I used this Atta to make the Neapolitan Pizza Bianca, in which one can taste the base with different flavours of cheese hitting the taste buds. There is no marinara sauce used in this type of pizza. I added my twist to the pizza by drizzling some spiced honey and thinly sliced apple.

So, here follows my recipe….

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Ingredients:

Makes 8 thin crust medium size Pizza.

Base – Aashirvaad Atta 500 grams, 25 grams of dry yeast, salt to taste, sugar 2 tabsp, extra virgin Olive Oil 2/3 tabsp and Milk  ¾ cups.

Toppings – 100 grams grated Parmesan cheese, 3 tabsp cream cheese, 200 grams Mozarella cheese, 200 grams Cheddar cheese, 200 grams Ricotta cheese. Fresh Basil leaves. 2 thinly sliced apples, Spiced honey (Honey induced with pepper), dehydrated garlic powder, dried oregano.

 

Method :

Base – Take half cup of lukewarm water in a small bowl, add sugar and dry yeast. Give it a stir and keep it covered for 15/ 20 mins for the yeast to activate. Take a big mixing bowl, pour in the Aashirvaad Atta, add salt, yeast mixture and start kneading the Atta with milk. The process of kneading takes atleast 25/30 mins. Make soft dough and drizzle some olive oil. Cover and keep it in an airtight cupboard for the dough to rise and double in size.

Toppings – Just grate all the above mentioned cheeses and keep it ready into bowls. Keep the rest of the ingredients ready too.

After an hour once the dough has risen, knock back the dough with your fist to take the air out. Divide the dough into 8 equal parts. Roll them into chapatti (circles) and roast each on a hot griddle for a couple of mins.

Preheat the oven to 250 deg. Centigrade for 15 mins.

Now place the rolled base on a wire rack of the oven, drizzle the cheeses except for the ricotta, the seasoning of garlic, oregano, place some thinly slice apples.  Grill the Pizza for 10 to 15 mins. Just before serving grate some ricotta, freshly torn basil leaves and drizzle a couple of spoons of spiced honey. Cut it and enjoy hot. The thin crispy base with different cheese, the oozing of honey is simply magical and takes you right back to the streets of Naples.

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