Monday, October 29, 2012

Mix Veggies with Sausage served with Quinoa

Generally on weekdays, we try to eat healthy and save all the binging for the weekends :)  This is one of the healthy, quick and easy and tasty recipes for a weekday dinner/lunch.

  • Asparagus - 1 pound - Cut into bite size pieces
  • Zucchini - 2 medium - Cut into bite size pieces
  • Carrots - 2 medium - Cut into bite size pieces
  • Onion - 1 small - Chopped fine
  • Chicken/Vegetable stock - 2 cups
  • Sausage - 2 number - Cut into bite size pieces (I used Italian hot chicken sausage) - This is optional if you want to keep it vegetarian
  • Olive Oil - 1 table spoon
  • Soy sauce - 2 table spoon
  • Garlic powder - 1 tea spoon
  • Ginger powder - 1 tea spoon
  • Italian seasoning - 1 table spoon
  • Salt - 1 table spoon (Add per taste. Soy sauce contains salt also) 
  • Pepper - 1 tea spoon (Crushed)
  • Corn flour - 1 table spoon (add this to 1/2 cup of water and mix well)
  • Quinoa - 2 cups Cooked (to serve it with)

To a pan on medium heat, add chopped Onions.  Saute till translucent.  Add sausage and stir fry for 5 minutes (omit this step if you are keeping it vegetarian).  Add all the other vegetables and stir fry for 5 more minutes.  Add all the other ingredients except the corn flour and let cook covered till the vegetables and sausage is cooked. Open the lid and add the corn flour mixed with water.  Let cook for another 2-3 minutes till the stock thickens.  Serve it hot with Quinoa, Brown or white rice.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Bread Upma (Stirfried Savory Bread)

Breakfast for lunch or dinner is my favourite.  One pot meal..quick and easy to make...delicious to eat!!  This dish takes about 15 to 20 minutes including the preparation.

  • Bread -  8 to10 slices (I used sourdough with crust on) - cut roughly into bite size pieces
  • Olive Oil - 2 table spoons
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tea spoon
  • Cumin seeds - 1 table spoon
  • Turmeric powder - 1 tea spoon
  • Curry leaves - 8 to10 number
  • Green Chilies - 4 to 5 chopped fine (add per taste)
  • Salt - 1 table spoon (add per taste)
  • Water - 1/2 cup to 1 cup

To a pan on medium heat, add Olive oil.  Once the oil is heated, add Mustard and Cumin seeds.  Wait for them to splutter.  Then add the curry leaves and Green Chilies.  Then add Salt and Turmeric powder.  Lower the heat on the pan.  Now add the cut bread and mix well.  Sprinkle water till the bread is a little softer but not wet.  Mine needed about 1/2 a cup.  Cover the pan and heat for about 5 more minutes.  Turn the heat off.  Hot fragrant Breat upma is ready to be served.  You can serve it by itself or with some plain yogurt.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Slow Cooker Quinoa Khichidi (Quinoa and Lentils Indian style)

Khichidi is soul food for many.  I could eat it from breakfast, lunch or dinner.  It is so easy and quick to make and so very delicious to eat.  Also guilt free as I am using Quinoa.  Slow cooker (crockpot) is my best friend on weekdays.  This is one of those recipes which just takes 5 minutes to assemble.  Just put it to cook when you leave to work in the morning and you will enter a fragrant home. 

  • Quinoa - 1 cup
  • Toor dal (split yellow lentils) - 1 cup
  • Jeera (Cumin) - 1 tea spoon
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tea spoon
  • Curry leaves - 5-8 number
  • Salt - to taste
  • Pepper corns - 1 tea spoon crushed (add per taste)
  • Olive oil - 1 table spoon
  • water - 6 cups (use less if you like thick consistency.  I love it a little runny)

Add all the above ingredients to the slow cooker.  Put it on low for about 6-8 hours.  Hot and fragrant Khichici is ready to be served.  You can serve this with some potato chips, pickle or just plain drizzled with some ghee.

  • If you do not have a slow cooker, you can use a pressure cooker instead.  Just add all the ingredients (water=4 cups instead of 6) and pressure cook it until 3 whistles (that is about 10 minutes depending on the size of the pressure cooker).
  • You might need to adjust time for the slow cooker depending on the kind of cooker and sometimes the type of dal also.  Just increase the cooking time by another hour or two if you see that the dal is not completely cooked.  Also, cooking for little longer does not harm the taste or quality of the dish.  The slow cooker does not burn food.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Almond Mint Chutney (Badam Pudina Chutney)

Of lately, my daughter has taken a liking to chutneys.  She loves them on anything.  I have been trying chutneys that are simple, quick and healthy.  I tried this combination last week and it turned out really good.

·         Almonds – 1 cup – I used the raw kind.  Not the roasted.
·         Mint – 1 cup loosely packed -  Take the leaves out of the stem.
·         Desiccated coconut – 2 table spoons
·         Garlic  – 2 pods
·         Salt – 1 tea spoon (add per taste)
·         Green Chilies – 4-6 in number (add per taste)
·         Tamarind paste – ½ tea spoon (add per taste)
·         Water – 1 cup (add more if you like thinner consistency)
For seasoning:
·         Olive oil – 1 tea spoon
·         Curry leaves – 4-6 in number
·         Mustard seeds – 1 tea spoon
Blend all the above ingredients well till a smooth paste like consistency is attained.  Dish it out in the serving bowl.  For seasoning, heat the oil in a small sauce pan on medium heat.  Once the oil starts smoking, add the mustard seeds and wait till they splatter.  Add the curry leaves and take the pan off the heat.  Add this seasoning to the chutney.  Simple, quick and healthy Almond Mint chutney is ready to be enjoyed with naan, chapati, roti, poori, idly, dosa, bread or just plain rice.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Simple White Sangria

It's summer and nothing sounds better than a Sangria for a weekend brunch with some cheese and crusty bread (or spicy chicken)...Here is a simple light, fragrant white Sangria to not only satisfy your taste buds but awaken your senses....

  • Good white wine - I used a late harvest Riesling - 1 - 750 ml bottle
  • Fruits -
    • Strawberries - 5 in number- sliced thinly
    • Oranges - 1 - sliced thinly
    • Pears - 1 - sliced thinly

Pour the bottle of wine into an airtight glass container.  Add all the ingredients.  Close the lid tight of the container and let stand in the cooler for a night (about 8-10 hours) so that the fruity tastes get infused into the wine.  Pour the wine into a glass with a few slices of the fruit and enjoy!!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Savory Lemony Quinoa (Indian Style)

Eating healthy....I used to think is a myth :) How can something healthy be tasty??  In 2009, I proved myself wrong...I wanted to change my (rather my family's) food habits and started looking for healthy options.  I found South Beach Diet.  I do not believe in dieting...cause I love food...both eating and cooking.  But, this was an eye opener to many foods which I had never heard of before and also the health aspect of them.  I started to make this more tasty and still keep it simple...Below is the result of one of those experiments....


  • Quinoa - 3 cups (cooked).  See the note below for more information
  • Olive Oil - 1 table spoon
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tea spoon
  • Cumin seeds - 1 tea spoon
  • Curry leaves - 10-12 number
  • Onion - 1/2 cup chopped finely
  • Peanuts - 2 tablespoons (optional)
  • Green Chilies - 3-4 finely chopped (add per taste)
  • Turmeric powder - 1 tea spoon
  • Salt - 2 tea spoons (add per taste)
  • Lemon juice - 1 table spoon (optional)
To a pan on medium heat, add Olive Oil.  Add the Mustard and Cumin seeds.  Let them splutter.  Add the Curry leaves and then the Onions.  Saute them till translucent.  Add all the other ingredients except Lemon juice and Quinoa.  Stir fry for about 1 minute.  Then add the Quinoa and Lemon Juice.  Mix well.  Savory Lemony Quinoa  is ready to enjoy...guilt free :)
  • Quinoa can be bought in most grocery stores now.  You get them in black and white variety.  I like the white one.  The black one is a little crunchy and nutty. 
  • I cook Quinoa in the rice cooker just like rice (1 cup rice to 1 1/2 cups water).  You can also follow the cooking instructions at the back.
  • For more information on Quinoa, see

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Simple Eggplant curry in a hurry

Eggplant is one of those vegetables which is very easy to cook and takes on the flavours very well.  This recipe is for one of those week nights when you don't have enough time or energy to make something elaborate but, want to eat something tasty, healthy and easy to make.

  • Eggplant - 2 cups
  • Onion - Sliced thin and long - 1/2 cup
  • Tomato - Chopped fine- 1 cup
  • Cilantro - 2 table spoons - finely chopped
  • Coriander powder - 1 table spoon
  • Cumin powder - 1 tea spoon
  • Turmeric powder - 1 tea spoon
  • Garlic - finely chopped - 1 table spoon
  • Salt - 1 table spoon (add per taste)
  • Red chili powder - 1 table spoon (add per taste)
  • Olive oil - 1 table spoon
  • Water - 1 cup (add additional per desired consistency)


To a pan on medium heat, add onions.  Saute till translucent.  Add Tomatoes and saute till soft.  Add all other ingredients and close the lid.  Cook until the eggplant is soft.  This will take about 15 minutes.  Serve it with some Chapati, Roti or Rice.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Peppered Chicken

It is strange how certain smells...tastes…reminds you of certain time period in your life...certain people…certain incidents…
This is one of those preparations which reminds me of one of my good friends…the times we spent together…laughing, chatting, eating, listening to music….inspired by whose preparation I tried this...

·         Chicken – 2 pounds cut into bite size pieces (Boneless skinless)
·         Ginger paste – 1 tea spoon
·         Garlic paste – 1 tea spoon
·         Pepper Corns – 1 tea spoon coarsely crushed
·         Red Chili powder – 1 tea spoon
·         Crushed red pepper – 1 tea spoons
·         Onion – ½ cup chopped fine
·         Olive Oil – 2 table spoons
·         Cumin powder – ½ tea spoon
·         Clove powder – ½ tea spoon
·         Cinnamon powder – ½ tea spoon
·         Coriander powder – ½ tea spoon
·         Fennel seeds – ½ tea spoon
·         Turmeric powder – ½ tea spoon
·         Curry leaves – 8-10
·         Mustard seeds – ½ tea spoon
·         Lemon – ½ a medium (add per taste)
·         Salt – 1 table spoon (add per taste)
To a pan on medium heat, add oil.  Let it heat and then add the Mustard seeds to it.  Let them splutter.  Add Curry leaves and Onions.  Sauté till the Onions are translucent.  Add the rest of the ingredients except the Chicken.  Sauté them till u can smell the fragrance.  Add Chicken and sauté with the rest of the ingredients for 1-2 minutes.  Close the lid and let cook for about 8-10 minutes on medium heat.  Chicken breast meat cut into bite size pieces cook really fast.  Then, open the lid and sauté till all the water has evaporated.  Squeeze half a lemon before serving.  Serve it hot with chapatti, Nan, rice or Fragrant Ghee RiceThis can be served as an appetizer with a glass of good Cabernet or Port. 

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Hatch Chilli Fish / Tofu

My husband loves spicy food.  On one of our trips, we found roasted hatch chillies and fell in love with them.  They are so flavorful and makes any preparation finger licking good J  Below is one of the fish preparations.  It takes less than 30 minutes to make and is very easy.
·         Hatch chillies – 1 cup (roasted and coarsely pureed)
·         Garlic paste – 1 table spoon
·         Salt – 1 table spoon (add per taste)
·         Fish / Firm Tofu – 1 pound cut into desired pieces (I used Sole)
·         Onions – ¼ cup chopped finely
·         Butter – 1 tablespoon
·         Cumin powder – ¼ table spoon
·         Cinnamon powder – ¼ table spoon
·         Clove powder – ¼ table spoon
·         Water – ½ cup (add per desired consistency)

To a pan on medium heat, add butter.  Let it melt.  Then add onions.  Saute till translucent.  Then add Hatch chillies, Garlic paste, Cumin Powder, Cinnamon powder, clove powder and water.  Cook covered till it comes to boil.  Then, add the fish and salt.  Cook covered for 10-15 minutes or until the fish is cooked.
Serve it hot with Fragrant Ghee Rice
·         You can substitute firm or baked tofu for fish.
·         Please remove the seeds of the Hatch Chillies if you think they are very spicy.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Simply Easy Pomogranate Salad

My husband reminded me today that it has been a loooonnnngggg time since I posted any recipes on my blog.  Work and life has taken over all my time :)  I have still been creating and cooking quick and easy recipes..I need it more now than ever!! 

Here is a quick and easy salad recipe that goes with any dish or by adding some grilled chicken, you can make it a meal in itself.

  • Romaine lettuce - 4 cups shredded or chopped finely
  • Pomogranite seads - 1.5 cups
  • Carrots - 1 cup shredded or chopped
For the dressing
  • Agave Nectar - 1 tea spoon (you can also substitute this with Maple syrup)
  • Lemon Juice - 1 table spoon
  • Salt - 1/4 tea spoon
  • Nutmeg powder - a pinch
  • All spice powder - a pinch

Mix all the salad ingredients in a salad bowl.  Whisk the ingredients for dressing and toss it with the salad just before serving.  Else, the salad will wilt.  Simply delicious as a side to any main dish or add a few pieces of grilled chicken and this can be a delicious and light meal in itself!!