Sunday, March 23, 2014

The Detox Series - Grilled Chicken Salad

Confession time! I was slipping away from my detox therapy and being lured towards food and more food again. But I quickly got my act together and got back to eating healthy and I intend to do that for a few more days. This salad I made today is one of the easiest really. No fuss, hardly any prep and what emerged was a plate full of gorgeousness! Didn't have too many fresh veggies at hand so had to make do with peppers,onion and chicken. Am not complaining though - it tasted superb. Sharing my Grilled Chicken Salad recipe with you all.


Bell peppers - 1 cup - diced - I used red and yellow ones

Chicken - 1 breast piece - diced

Green tomatoes - 2 small - diced

Tomatoes - 1 large - diced

Onion -1 medium - diced

Spring onion - 1 stem - finely chopped

Feta cheese - a handful crushed

Salt - to taste

Pepper - to taste

Honey - 1 tbsp.

Mustard sauce - 1 tbsp.

Olive oil - 2 tbsp.


Take all the diced vegetables (except spring onion) and the chicken in a baking tin. Drizzle a little olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Put the baking tray in a preheated oven and grill for 15 mins at 200 deg C.
In a glass bowl mix together the olive oil,honey and mustard sauce. Season with salt and pepper and mix well into the grilled vegetables.
Garnish with chopped spring onion and crushed feta cheese. Serve warm.


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The Detox Series - Wholewheat Pasta in a Chunky Tomato Sauce

Pasta is a saviour, it has always saved me whenever I have got stuck wondering what to cook for lunch/dinner.And it is again a family favourite. The wholewheat pasta however not so much. Never tried it before to be honest. But in my quest to eat and cook healthy detox meals I had to give it a shot. Fab India again has a very good collection of organic pastas. I picked up a packet of Machiato Rigatoni which is basically aata pasta! Keeping in mind how wholewheat pasta would taste i thought it would be best to cook up a robust spicy sauce to serve with it. So here's the recipe of Wholewheat Pasta in a chunky Tomato sauce


Wholewheat pasta - 1 cup - boiled & drained al dente as per instruction on the pack.

Green tomatoes - 2 small - roughly chopped

Tomatoes - 2 medium - roughly chopped

Onion - 1 medium - roughly chopped

Mushrooms - half a cup - thinly sliced

Olive oil - 1 tsp

Oregano - 1 tbsp. - use herbs as per your choice

Parsley - a handful - chopped

Salt - to taste

Pepper - taste

Chili flakes - 1 tsp


In a pan boil bring water to boil. Add 2 tbsp. of salt. Add the pasta and cook for 7-8 mins. Drain and run it under some cold water. Add a little olive oil,mix well and keep aside.

In a non-stick pan add 1 tsp olive oil. Add the chopped onion ans sauté till translucent. Next add the chopped tomatoes and sauté for another 2 mins. Add oregano,red chili flakes, salt and pepper. Cover and let the tomatoes cook till soft and mushy.

Next add the sliced mushrooms and cook for a min. Add the boiled pasta , mix well , garnish with chopped parsley and serve hot.


Friday, March 14, 2014

The Detox Series - Baked Eggs with Spinach

Continuing with my efforts to eat healthy today my breakfast was Baked Eggs with Spinach. A very simple recipe that I found in a book gifted to me by my mum recently. Eggs are anyways a favourite with the boys and adding a dash of spinach only made it so much healthier. I figured that one can do a lot of variation in this dish by adding mushrooms, sausages etc but since I am in a mood for detox I kept it simple.Just a tip I would mention here - the egg in this dish would ideally be cooked till the yolks are still soft in the centre. But I am not too fond of runny yolks so I baked it a tad bit longer than required.


Eggs - 2 nos

Spinach - a handful - washed and chopped roughly

Low fat cream - 1/4 th cup - I used Amul cream

Olive oil - 1 tsp

Salt - to taste

Pepper - to taste - freshly crushed

Parmesan cheese - 1 tbsp. grated


In a pan heat the olive oil. Saute the spinach lightly and season with salt and pepper.

Remove the spinach from heat and spread out on a baking dish. Break open the 2 eggs on top of the spinach.

Pour the cream over the eggs. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle the grated Parmesan on top. Bake in a preheated oven for 10 mins at 180 deg C.

Enjoy with multi grain toast or just like that!


The Detox Series - Multigrain Savoury Porridge

Till about last evening I was happily indulging in mindless gorging and gluttony and this has been going on since the past few months. It all started along with the winter holidays - first family weddings , then vacations and then a steady stream of visitors at home. All that I think I was doing is eat. So when I woke up in the morning today I told myself that I had to STOP. Stop being so callous with what I was eating and move towards something healthier and detoxifying. A visit to Fab India and I came back loaded with organic goodies. Grains, whole wheat pastas, herbs and dressings and I was all set. I also picked up a packet of multi grain porridge mix of pulses and grains which seemed very interesting. I simply followed the instructions on the pack and made it into a  porridge with a few additions. Didn't have too many veggies at hand so added few soyabean nuggets , green peas and a dash of mint.So here's the first of the recipe of my "Detox Series" - Multigrain Savoury Porridge. Kick start your day with this healthy breakfast dish and trust me you will feel so much better - like I am right now.


Multigrain mix - 1 cup - I used ready made ones but you can easily make it at home  combining your favourite pulses like musur and moong dal along with some dalia.

Onion - 1 medium - finely chopped

Tomato - 1 medium - finely chopped

Soyabean nuggets - 8-10 soaked in warm water

Green peas - half cup

Turmeric powder - 1 tsp

Red chilli powder - 1 tsp

Coriander powder - 1 tsp

Cumin powder - 1 tsp

Salt - to taste

Sugar - a pinch

Cumin seeds - half tsp

Refined oil - 1 tsp

Lemon juice - 1 tbsp.

Water - 2 cups

Mint leaves - for garnish


Soak the multi grain mix in some warm water for half an hour.

In a pressure cooker add the oil. Once the oil heats up splutter the cumin seeds. Add the chopped onions and cook till it turns light brown in colour.
Next add the chopped tomatoes,soybean nuggets and green peas. Add the drained multi grain mix and saute for 2 mins.
Add in all the dry spice powders - turmeric,red chili powder,cumin powder,coriander powder,salt and sugar. Give it all a good mix.
Add 2 cups of water, close the lid of the pressure cooker and let it cook for 10 mins or till 6 whistles.

Remove from heat and serve with a dash of lemon juice and garnish of mint leaves.


Thursday, March 13, 2014

Nolen Gurer Payesh ( Rice Pudding with Datepalm jaggery) - A Divine Dessert

Every time my mother visits me this time of the year I make sure she treats us to Nolen Gurer Payesh  - Rice pudding with datepalm jaggery. Nolen gur is a seasonal treat and we Bengalis would not miss a chance to relish this divine delicacy around winter and early spring. I also stock up on some but the fresh jaggery tastes something else.You get the liquid variety that comes in a clay jar or can use the blocks. Its an easy recipe but it needs constant supervision. Maa of course has a few tricks which she has shared with me this time around and I am passing it onto my readers!


Gobindobhog rice - 1 cup - washed well and soaked in water for 15 mins

Milk - 1 litre - I used Amul Tazaa - but its better to use full cream variety

Date palm - 1 bar/block - around 200 gms

Milk powder - 5 tsps.

Water - 1 cup


In a thick bottomed deep pan bring the milk to a boil. Add the soaked rice into the milk and let it boil on low flame. Once the rice starts to soften add a cup of water and let it boil further till the rice is fully cooked and the milk has thickened.

Now add the nolen gur / datepalm jaggery. Since it comes in a block/bar its advisable to crumble it into small pieces so that it dissolves well into the rice-milk mixture.

Once the jaggery has fully dissolved add the milk powder and mix well.
Remove from heat and serve.


Monday, March 10, 2014

Royyala Iguru - Andhra Style Prawn Curry

I have been having a lot of fun lately. First it was my mother visiting us and spoiling us silly with her awesome cooking and now with my sister in town its only getting better! I am totally preoccupied with my 2 yr old niece and she is a treat. So as you can understand with family around I couldn't really focus that much on cooking and blogging. However I had to find some time to participate in the ongoing KFB  event "Kashmir to Kanyakumari" where we have to create a dish either from the north or the south.
Now to be honest I have been exposed to a lot of north Indian food be it their tikkas, butter chicken, naan/rotis etc . The challenge for me was to explore the South Indian cuisine which is so vast and rich. I have not really eaten that many south Indian non veg dishes except maybe a solitary Sukka dish or maybe a Prawn Gassi - thanks to Sagar Ratna in Delhi. The only way for me to explore this cuisine before I got down to making a dish was to google. So I googled for Kerala cuisine, Andhra cuisine and also Mangalorean cuisine. The search threw up at me a sea of recipes, most of it so amazing. But as you know I am a stickler for easy everyday recipes. One such recipe that caught my fancy was Royyala Iguru - Andhra Style Prawn Curry that would go so well with rice. My recipe has been broadly adapted from Sailu's Kitchen a treasure trove of authentic recipes. The ingredients used here are again very basic everyday ones , I just added a few more to make it my own.


Prawns - 500 gms - medium sized - deveined and washed

Onions - 1 large - finely chopped

Tomato - 1 large - finely chopped

Ginger & Garlic paste - 1 tbsp.

Red Chili powder - 1 tbsp.

Turmeric powder - 1 tsp

Coriander powder - 1 tsp

Cumin powder - 1 tsp

Curry leaves - 1 sprig

Poppy seeds & Cashew nut paste - 2 tbsp

Refined oil - 2 tbsp

Garam masala powder - 1 tsp

Warm water - 1 cup

Green chilli's - 4-5 according to your taste

Salt - to taste


In a non-stick pan , add the oil. Once it heats up add the curry leaves and the chopped onion. Once the onion is translucent add the chopped tomato and the ginger garlic paste.
Fry till the ingredients are light brown in colour.

Next tip in the cleaned prawns along with the dry spice powders - turmeric , red chili , coriander and cumin.

 Mix the spices well and cook for 5 mins on low heat so that the spices don't burn. Add the poppy seeds and cashew nut paste. Mix well and fry for another 5 mins on low heat. Pour in a cup of warm water , salt to taste and the green chillies. Cover and let it simmer for another 5-7 mins.

Once the gravy thickens add the garam masala powder. Mix well and serve hot with rice.

The family enjoyed this dish for lunch and I am going to be making it often from now on. I was a bit sceptical about adding raw prawns to the masala mix  as I thought it would leave a bad taste in the curry but it turned out just alright.

I am sending this recipe to the KFB event Kashmir to Kanyakumari