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Wednesday, 26 August 2020

Raw Papaya & Coriander Root Soup


         This is a very healthy and a refreshing one-pot meal. It is good for the tummy and has a very soothing and a cooling effect. It can be enjoyed as it is or with some bread sticks / croutons and a dash of lime for a light comfort meal. A hot bowl of this yummy soup is just perfect to warm you up on a cold wintry night. So check out the step by step pictorial recipe to prepare it. 






          Raw papaya is very healthy as it contains vitamins, enzymes, essential nutrients and minerals. It beats diabetes, aids in weight loss, improves digestion and helps beat constipation. 

          I have also added some coriander roots for a lingering aroma. It is packed with iron, improves digestion and lowers blood sugar. It also has anti fungal properties and is good for the skin. 

           So this rare combination of raw papaya and coriander roots in a soup form is just perfect for a healthy light meal. 





  • 1 cup raw papaya, chopped
  • 1 cup coriander roots
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1" cinnamon stick
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1-2 green chilies
  • 2 cups stock / water
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper powder 
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon powder
  • 1 tbsp. coriander leaves, chopped
  • pinch of red chili flakes
  • dash of lime





            Heat oil and temper with bay leaves and cinnamon. Add the onion, garlic and green chilies. Saute till it is translucent.

           Add the raw papaya and coriander roots. Saute for 2-3 minutes.  Add all the dry spices and give it a stir. 

          Add 2 cups water / stock and pressure cook for 3-4 whistles. When cool, discard the bay leaves and cinnamon. 

          Blend to a smooth puree. Heat through and garnish with coriander leaves and red chili flakes. Enjoy with bread sticks / croutons and a dash of lime for a light comfort meal.




                                 Heat oil & temper with bay leaves & cinnamon. 




                                Add onion, garlic & green chilies. Saute till light brown.




                                Add raw papaya & coriander roots. Saute for 2-3 minutes.



                                 Add all the dry spices and give it a stir. 



                 Add 2 cups water / stock & pressure cook for 3-4 whistles. When cool, discard 
                 bay leaves & cinnamon stick. Blend to a smooth puree.






                  Garnish with coriander leaves & red chili flakes. Enjoy with bread sticks /
                  croutons and a dash of lime for a light comfort meal.




















Tuesday, 25 August 2020

Punjabi Chana Dal (Bengal Gram Lentil Curry - Punjabi Style)


          This is a traditional Punjabi style lentil curry that is very commonly found in every Punjabi homes and dhabas across the country. It is a very yummy dal preparation that is basically cooked in ghee. However I also added some oil to prepare it. You can enjoy this dal with naan, tandoori roti, roomali roti or lachcha paratha for a great comfort meal. So check out the step by step pictorial recipe to prepare this wholesome rustic lentil curry. 








  • 1 cup chana dal (Bengal Gram), soaked for an hour
  • 2 tbsp. oil 
  • 1 tbsp. ghee
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds 
  • 1-2 dry red chilies
  • 1/4 tsp. asafoetida
  • 1 tsp. ginger, chopped
  • 1 tsp. garlic, chopped
  • 1-2 green chilies, chopped
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp. red chili powder
  • 1 tsp. garam masala powder
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tsp. kasuri methi, crushed
  • 1 tsp. coriander leaves, chopped 








          Pressure cook the dal in 2 & 1/2 cups water till soft, but not mushy. Keep aside. 

          Heat oil and ghee in a pan. Temper with red chilies, cumin seeds and asafoetida. Saute for a few seconds. 

          Add the chopped ginger, garlic and green chilies. Stir fry for a minute. Now add the onion and continue to stir fry till light brown. 

          Add the chopped tomatoes and give it a stir. Cover and cook till it is mashed well. Add all the dry spices (except salt) and mix well.

          Now add the boiled dal, salt and kasuri methi. Cover and simmer on a low flame for 4-5 minutes. When done, switch off the flame and garnish with coriander leaves. 

          Serve with naan, tandoori roti, roomali roti or lachcha paratha for a great comfort meal. 




                      Heat oil and ghee. Temper with red chilies, cumin seeds & asafoetida. 
                      Saute for a few seconds. 



                          Add chopped ginger, garlic & green chilies. Stir fry for a minute. 




                                Now add onion & continue to stir fry till light brown. 



                  Add chopped tomatoes & give it a stir. Cover & cook till it is mashed well. 



                                Add all the dry spices (except salt) and mix well.




                      Add boiled dal, salt & kasuri methi. Cover & simmer on a low flame for
                      4-5 minutes. 



                         When done, switch off the flame & garnish with coriander leaves. 




                      Serve with naan, tandoori roti, roomali roti or lachcha paratha for a 
                      great comfort meal. 



















Monday, 17 August 2020

Baked Chili Pepper Pakora


        One can't resist the temptation of deep fried pakoras. However, there is always a guilt attached while enjoying them. A healthy alternative to deep fried pakoras is baking them (either oil free or with minimal oil). They come out as crispy as their deep fried counterparts and are equally yummy as well. 

          So I baked these chili pepper pakoras that you should definitely try out. In fact, they are very easy to prepare and are completely hassle free. These crispy treats are just perfect with your evening cuppa. They also go absolutely well as an appetizer with any chutney, sauce, hummus or any kind of dip of your preference. So check out the step by step pictorial recipe to prepare this healthy monsoon delight.

  









  • 2 chili peppers, sliced
  • 1/2 cup gram flour
  • 1 tsp. ginger, grated
  • 1 tbsp. coriander roots, chopped
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp. red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. roasted cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp. roasted coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. sesame seeds
  • pinch of baking soda
  • 1-2 tsp. oil








          In a bowl, combine all the ingredients (except oil). Add very little water and make a thick sticky batter. Cover and keep aside for 15 minutes.

          Grease a baking tray and put dollops of the batter. Drizzle few drops of oil on each of them and bake at 180 degrees C. in a preheated oven for 10 minutes. 

          Flip them over and bake again for 10 minutes more. Then grill them for 8-10 minutes on both sides till slightly browned and crisp. 

          Serve as a tea time snack or as an appetizer with chutney, sauce, hummus or any kind of dip of your preference. .




                    Mix all ingredients (except oil). Add very little water & make a thick 
                    sticky batter. Cover & keep aside for 15 minutes.



                    Grease a baking tray and put dollops of the batter. Drizzle few drops of oil on 
                    each of them.



                    Bake at 180 degrees C. in a preheated oven for 10 min. Flip them over
                    & bake again for 10 min. more. Then grill them for 8-10 min. on both
                    sides till slightly browned & crisp.









                  Serve as a tea time snack or as an appetizer with chutney, sauce, hummus or 
                  any kind of dip of your preference. .


















Chicken in Coconut MIlk


          This is a very easy and an equally yummy chicken curry cooked in coconut milk. I made it a bit spicy to balance the sweetness of the coconut milk. There is not much frying or sauteing required and is basically simmered till done. I kept the gravy a little runny - a soupy type. However, you can adjust the consistency according to your preference. So it is a complete hassle free dish that can be enjoyed with any form of rice like steamed rice, pulao, plain biryani or jeera rice. 








  • 500 gms. Chicken, curry cut
  • 2 onion. blended into a paste
  • 1 tbsp. ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 cup yogurt, beaten
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin-coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp. garam masala powder
  • 2 tsp. red chili powder
  • pinch of nutmeg powder
  • salt to taste
  • 2-3 tbsp. oil
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 2 dry red chilies
  • 1" stick cinnamon
  • 3 cardamoms
  • 4 cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. peppercorns
  • 1/2 mace
  • 1 & 1/2  cups coconut milk
  • 1 tsp. coriander leaves, chopped








           Marinate chicken with onion paste, ginger-garlic paste, yoghurt and all dry spices overnight or for a minimum of 3-4 hours. 

          Heat oil in a pan. Temper with bay leaves, dry red chilies, cinnamon, cardamom, mace, peppercorns and cloves. Saute for a few seconds. 

           Add the chicken pieces from the marinade. Saute on a high flame for 2-3 minutes. Add the remaining marinade. Cover and simmer on a low flame till the chicken is done.

          Now add the coconut milk and bring it to a boil. Switch off the flame and garnish with coriander leaves. Serve with pulao, plain biryani, steamed rice or jeera rice.
























Stuffed Labneh Paratha


           Parathas or Flatbread are the most popular and favoured breakfast in Northern regions of India. They can be plain or stuffed parathas. So here is one for you to try. A stuffed Labneh (Middle Eastern dip) paratha. You can serve these parathas with either chutney or pickles for a sumptuous and a wholesome meal. Besides breakfast, they are also ideal for brunch, lunch, dinner or as a lunch box meal too. So check out the step by step pictorial recipe to prepare this healthy fusion dish.






          Labneh is a traditional Middle Eastern dip prepared from strained yoghurt. In simple terms, it is basically hung yoghurt and also goes by the name of yoghurt / cream cheese. 

         It is almost similar to greek yoghurt and is generally served with hummus, grilled meat / fish, falafel or pita bread. It can also be relished as a dip with veggie crudites, chips, nachos or tortillas or as a spread on sandwiches and parathas. 

          You can also have it just with a drizzle of some olive oil, zaatar and sumac or with some podi (gun powde) a la Indian style. 





  • 1 & 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (atta)
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp. oil to knead
  • oil to shallow fry
  • 3/4 cup Labneh or as required














           Mix together flour, salt to taste and 1 tbsp. oil. Add required quantity of water, little at a time, and knead into a dough. Cover with a wet cloth and keep aside for 10-15 minutes.

          Divide the dough into 6 equal portions. Roll out each into a small disc, just like a poori, by dusting some flour. Take a poori and spread some labneh evenly over it, leaving the edges. 

          Cover with another poori and seal all edges. Roll out into a paratha. Make similar parathas in the same manner. 

          Heat a tawa / griddle and shallow fry the parathas, one at a time, by drizzling some oil. Cook on both sides till golden brown in colour. 

          Transfer to a serving plate and serve along with chutney or pickles for a sumptuous and a wholesome meal. 




                      Take a poori & spread some labneh evenly over it, leaving the edges. 



                      Cover with another poori & seal all edges. 




                      Roll out into a paratha. Make similar parathas in the same manner. 




                  Heat a tawa & shallow fry the parathas by drizzling some oil. Cook on both
                  sides till golden brown in colour. 






                  Serve with chutney or pickles for a sumptuous & a wholesome meal. 

















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