COLD WATERMELON SALAD

1Hi. You know in my part of the world it is quite hot with a surprise drizzle sometimes. Hence, we try to keep ourselves hydrated and cool. Today’s recipe is a simple salad that I had in evening. There is a famous recipe of watermelon salad with feta cheese. Well I am not even sure we get feta cheese here. Anyways I wanted to have something light, refreshing and yet filling salad. So a little dressing and mix and match ingredients gave this wonderful salad.

Do try and let me know if you liked it.

INGREDIENTS:

  1. Cold Watermelon pieces – 1 cup
  2. Mint leaves – 4-5
  3. Lemon Juice – juice of half a lemon
  4. Honey – 1 tblspn
  5. Black salt – a pinch
  6. Puffed rice/ Murmure – 1/4 cup
  7. Nuts – your choice (I added chopped walnuts)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Lets start with making the dressing. In a small bowl, add chopped mint leaves.
  2. Add lemon juice, honey and black salt.
  3. Whisk it well.
  4. In a salad bowl, add watermelon pieces.
  5. Pour the dressing over watermelon pieces and mix well.
  6. Garnish with puffed rice and nuts.

Enjoy. 2

TOMATO RASAM – SOUL/COMFORT FOOD

IMG_2577Hey There. You know what is soul food? Or comfort food? The food that satisfies your soul on a tough day is known as soul/comfort food. Or the food that reminds you of your home or native is soul/comfort food. Today I am posting one such soul food. Rasam. Now there are many types of rasam and many recipes out there.

Rasam is a famous south indian dish that is known for its digestive powers. It is known for its cleansing properties. It is very good to have it as a soup or shorba when you are fighting a cold or chest congestion.

IMG_2579INGREDIENTS:

Tomatoes – 2 ripe

Coriander Seeds – 1.4 tblsp

Black Pepper corns – 8-10

Garlic – 5-6 cloves

Asafoetida powder – a pinch

Tamarind – 1 small lemon sized soaked in ¼ cup water

Dry red chilli – 2-3

Oil – 2 tblspn

Coriander Leaves – 3-4 tblspn

Salt to taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Fry red chilli in oil. Remove and take it in blender.
  2. Blend into coarse paste red chilli, coriander seeds, black pepper and garlic.
  3. Put this mixture back into oil and saute for a minute.
  4. Add asafoetida powder and mix well.
  5. Add chopped tomatoes and cook the tomatoes till soft.
  6. Add tamarind pulp and mix well.
  7. Add salt and 1.5 cups of water and bring it to a boil.
  8. Let it boil for 10 minutes.
  9. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.

Serve hot with rice or drink it as it is.IMG_2578

MINTY GREEN PEAS SOUP

1The weather is playing hide and seek these days. Yesterday all of sudden it rained in the evening and when I thought it would rain more it didn’t. Some days its sunny and hot and humid while on some days cold breeze is flowing. It is difficult to stay away from cough and cold these days.

Hence it is important eat healthy and stay strong. All my soup posts I have mentioned that I prepare soups only when someone is under the weather. Well that’s true. Soup in my house is rare. When someone falls sick we usually make ‘kanji’. But soup has its own benefits. Usually kids take a liking to soups. It is a wonderful way to include veggies in your diet. And it is lighter on the stomach. If you notice all my soup recipes do not have corn flour added. Usually soups require corn flour. But I try to replace corn flour with healthier options like the vegetables.

So here we go. A simple minty pea soup.

3INGREDIENTS:

Frozen/ Fresh green peas – 1 cup

Onion – 1 medium

Garlic – 2-3 cloves

Mint Leaves – 2 tblspn

Pepper Powder – 1/2 tsp

Vegetable/ Chicken Stock/ Water – 1 cup

Butter – 1 tblspn

Salt to taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Melt butter and add chopped onions.
  2. Saute them till translucent.
  3. Add chopped garlic and saute them.
  4. Add green peas and saute them for a minute.
  5. Add stock/ water and salt and bring it to a boil.
  6. Once boiled lower the flame and close and cook till the peas are soft.
  7. Switch off the flame. Drain the contents. Do not throw the liquid.
  8. Take the mint leaves and green peas mix in a blender and pulse till smooth.
  9. Transfer it back to the pan and add the liquid back to adjust the consistency. Mix this on low flame. Remaining liquid if left can be discarded.
  10. Add pepper powder and give the soup a nice mix.
  11. Once nicely hot switch off the flame and serve.

Have this hearty healthy green soup along with some toasted bread. 2

 

 

 

PUMPKIN SOUP

2I never thought I would be posting soups recipe. The only reason is soups are not my personal favorite. The only soups I order in restaurants is the tomato soup or hot and sour chicken soup. But recently I have this new found love and respect for soups. They are not only flavorsome but also very soothing to the stomach. Sometimes I use them as my side curry for hot chapathis.

These days I have a new mantra. Don’t reject until you have tried it. Many dishes that have been mediocre in my list or to my liking are now matching up to my taste. My mother when she sees me gorging on some side dish she prepared, she smiles and says that as a kid I simply refused to eat this. I guess people change and so do their taste.

Anyways coming to today’s recipe, this is one quick soup. Whenever I am under weather I make this soup. In US, pumpkin holds not only culinary significance but also traditional value. Halloween is incomplete without pumpkin decorations. Pumpkin also finds its place in many folklore and fairy/fiction tales aka cindrella, harry potter. And Thanksgiving is coming up and soup is a must. Do try this and let me know if you liked it.

3INGREDIENTS:

Pumpkin – cubed 1 cup

Onion – 1 medium

Garlic – 2 cloves

Butter – 2 tblspn

Dried Mixed herbs – 1/4 tsp (Optional though I would strongly recommend this)

Water – 1.5 cups

Black pepper powder – 1 tsp

Salt – as per taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Heat butter in a pressure cooker.
  2. Add chopped onion and garlic and saute well.
  3. Saute till the onions have become translucent and the raw smell of garlic disappears.
  4. Add chopped pumpkin and saute well.
  5. We are looking for slight brown color on the pumpkin.
  6. Add water, salt and mixed dried herbs and close the pressure cooker.
  7. Pressure cook for 2 whistles and switch off.
  8. When the pressure has settled, blend the contents to a smooth paste.
  9. Add more water based on the consistency you desire.
  10. Add pepper powder and mix well.

Serve hot with croutons.1

 

CHICKEN SOUP FOR AILING SOUL

1Do I need to outline the health benefits of chicken soup? As the famous adage goes “Chicken soup for the soul” it actually helps to sooth your senses. On cold or rainy days hot chicken soup works wonders for your body. I make this soup for my kid and myself whenever we are under the weather.

Do try this delicious power packed soup yourself and get its numerous health benefits.

INGREDIENTS:

Chicken pieces with and without bones – 4-5

Onion – 1 medium

Garlic – 2 large cloves

Ginger – 1 inch piece

Carrot – 1

Bay Leaf – 1

Star Anise – 1

Cinnamon – 1 small piece

Cloves – 3-4

Black Pepper – 3-4

Fennel Seeds – 1/4 tsp

Green cardamom – 1

Turmeric Powder – 1/4 tsp

Dry Basil Leaves – a pinch (optional)

Butter/ Olive oil – 1/4 tsp

Salt to taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a pressure cooker, melt some butter.
  2. Add cinnamon, cloves, black pepper, bay leaf, star anise, fennel seeds and cardamom and saute for 30 seconds.
  3. Add chopped onions and saute for a minute.
  4. Add finely chopped garlic and ginger and saute for another minute.
  5. Add chopped carrots and chicken pieces and saute on high heat.
  6. Add turmeric powder and basil leaves and continue sauteing on medium heat for another minute.
  7. Now add salt and 2 cups of water and pressure cook for 2 whistles and switch off the flame
  8. Once the steam settles drain the contents into clean bowl.
  9. Drink the soup when it is still slightly hot. 2