Showing posts from 2019

Back to school recipes - Oats Banana Date Breakfast Smoothie and Vegetable Wrap for School Lunch

I am back after what looks like a summer vacation. The schools have reopened for the new academic year after the much-needed summer break. For us, it was a very refreshing and revitalizing break because we spent a month at my parent's place. The distance and the change in routine allow us to look at our regular routine with a new pair of eyes and see what can be changed to make it better.

The daughter used to eat oatmeal cooked in milk with some cinnamon and sugar before leaving for school every day. She thought something to drink is more appropriate in the early morning and much quicker to finish in the rush to catch the school bus. I feel just drinking milk does not have the staying power to pull her through till the 9:30 am breakfast break in school. One day she, me and my mom had a casual discussion and came up with this smoothie which she is happy to drink before leaving for school.
Banana and dates add sweetness, fiber and good nutrition. Oats up the fiber content and add…

Using the last of winter carrots - Easy gajar halwa and halwa flavoured carrot cake

Summer is about to start here but I am still not ready to say good-bye to my favourite season of the year - winter. For me, the best part of winter is the abundance of beautiful vegetables. Sweet, red winter carrots are one such gem of a vegetable. We have been eating it raw every day for the whole season.
I also made our favourite winter dessert - gajar ka halwa on a few occasions. I tried a few tricks and have streamlined the long process of making the halwa into a less time-consuming and less labor-intensive one.

Gajar ka HalwaIngredients:1 kgcarrots1 ltrmilk*1 tbspcashew pieces1 tspcardamom powder1/2 cupsugarMethod
Heat the milk in a large vessel till it comes to a boil. Let it reduce on low flame stirring once in a while.Meanwhile, grate the carrots to a medium thickness. I outsource this to my husband who does it in 10 minutes.Add the grated carrots and a cup of the milk which was reducing to a pressure cooker and cook for 3 whistles on medium flame.Keep the milk reducing till thi…

Fasting recipes for Shivratri

I am not really a religious person. So Shivratri was another reason to try out new recipes; fasting recipes specifically. Shivratri is one of the major fasting days in Hinduism that is followed by a large number of people.
My thought process was that it is healthy and tasty to take a break from everyday grains like rice and wheat for a day. Instead of doing it on Monday as per the calendar, we did it on Sunday so that the husband would not miss out on the food.

Here's what I made for the day:
For breakfast, it was sabudana khichadi. It was certainly not a new recipe. It is our usual Sunday breakfast because the daughter loves it. The trick to perfect sabudana khichadi lies in the soaking technique of sabudana. I learnt this trick from my mom. After washing the sabudana a couple of times, soak it in enough water to cover it by an inch. Leave it for about 20 minutes. The sabudana would have soaked up some of the water by now. Drain the excess water leaving just a couple of tablespo…

A Bike trip to Revdanda beach and Alibaug

Yesterday was our 13th wedding anniversary. Being on a weekday, we decided to celebrate on the weekend by going on a bike trip for old times sake. We used to go on regular bike trips when we were in Bangalore during the initial years of our marriage.
We decided on Revdanda beach which is around 120 kms from Thane. We planned to start early on Sunday morning. The grandparents came to pick up the daughter on Saturday night. She stayed at their place for 24 hours until they dropped her off again on Sunday night. We are lucky to have such helpful grandparents who live close by.

We left home around 6:30 am. After we crossed Panvel and were out on the highway, it got so cold. We were freezing on the bike due to the bike induced wind chill factor. We stopped around 8:30 am for breakfast at Amantran hotel about 15 kms after Karnala bird sanctuary. 'Roti Shoti Chai Nashta' just before Karnala bird sanctuary is also a good place for breakfast if you want to stop earlier.
We were very cold…

DIY Condiments - homemade ketchup, homemade nutella and date-tamarind chutney

I used to buy bottles of ketchup and nutella but then I observed that the daughter was consuming large quantities of both of these condiments :). I switched to Heinz ketchup because they claim to be preservative-free but then I thought that it is so easy to make ketchup at home. Why am I not doing it myself? That's how I started on my DIY condiment making routine. Once ketchup was handled, I started making nutella. I am always worried about giving the kid any packaged products. Since she is not into eating our regular Indian food so much, these condiments are a way to get her to eat something healthy, like a vegetable paratha.

Homemade Tomato Ketchup
This is a very easy recipe with a handful of ingredients.
Ingredients:1 kg red,juicy tomatoes 1/2 cupsugar1/2 cupapple cider vinegar*1/2 tspginger powder1/2 tsppepper powder1 to 1.5 tsp rock salt*Method
Chop the tomatoes into large pieces and pressure cook them without water for 3 whistles on medium flame.*
Once cool, puree and strain the…

Highlights of the week - 14 to 20 Jan

This week was a leftovers kind of week. There was undhiyo and the rest of the items leftover from the family dinner on Sunday. My MIL had also brought over her signature aloo-gobhi, chole, boondi raita and gajar ka halwa for us. We had all of these for 3 days.

The daughter took methi paratha one day, potato sabji the next day, and pizza roti, featuring multi-grain roti and homemade pizza sauce after that.

15th January was Makar Sankranti. I had made tilgul vadis a few days ago. But the daughter wanted til gul ladoos. I find it impossible to eat store-bought til ladoos if they are hard. Our local store had run out of these ladoos by evening. So I made them at home. I melted a teaspoon of ghee. Then I added 100 gm of natural jaggery cut into very small pieces. I use all natural jaggery without any chemicals. This time I ordered this from Amazon and it is quite good. As soon as it melts, turn off the flame add 100 gm of til, 1/4 cup of roasted peanut powder, 1/2 tsp each of cardamom and …

Weekly recap - 7 to 13 January

The last weekend ended with pav bhaji. That was also the starting point of this week.

Monday, 07/01
The daughter took pav-bhaji sandwiches for lunch while we had it for breakfast.

For lunch, I made masoor amti with rotis. I boil the whole masoor which was soaked overnight in a pressure cooker. I use a good amount of garlic in the tadka with other regular tadka ingredients like mustard seeds, jeera, hing, and turmeric. Add it to the cooked dal, along with kokam, tiny bit of jaggery, salt and goda masala. Finally, coriander and coconut to garnish.
Tuesday, 08/01
The daughter had a roti spread with the last of the homemade nutella for her breakfast box and cheese stuffed dosa with salad for lunch box. For us, it was red amaranth (laal bhaji) made with lots of garlic and onion, finished with fresh coconut.

Wednesday, 09/01
I had put aside some laal bhaji to mix into some atta and make a paratha dough for the daughter. She ate that at school but god forbid, I give her the bhaji as is. :)
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