Lite Bite http://litebite.in Light recipes for right health. Sat, 18 Oct 2014 11:25:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 Recipe | Easy Gulkand Mewa Burfi or Fig & Date Fudge with Rose preserve – And I am not complaining.. http://litebite.in/recipe-gulkand-nuts-burfi-fudge/ http://litebite.in/recipe-gulkand-nuts-burfi-fudge/#comments Sat, 18 Oct 2014 11:24:38 +0000 http://litebite.in/?p=11336 There are many things in life that I wish I could keep with me forever. The memories and days spent at my hometown in Udiapur tops that list.

I had a chance to visit Udaipur last week, which incidentally was my shortest ever trip to my hometown. I started at the wee hours of morning, left my children behind for a week, changed two fights, killed never-ending transit time at airport, and then traveled by road again to finally reach Udaipur late in night.

Yes, I did it all in one day. But I am not complaining.

The post Recipe | Easy Gulkand Mewa Burfi or Fig & Date Fudge with Rose preserve – And I am not complaining.. appeared first on Lite Bite.

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healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

There are many things in life that I wish I could keep with me forever. The memories and days spent at my hometown in Udiapur tops that list.

I had a chance to visit Udaipur last week, which incidentally was my shortest ever trip to my hometown. I started at the wee hours of morning, left my children behind for a week, changed two fights, killed never-ending transit time at airport, and then traveled by road again to finally reach Udaipur late in night.

Yes, I did it all in one day. But I am not complaining.

I never believed in the saying that one travels more useful when they travel alone till I did it this time. Infact I don’t recall taking time to get away from daily responsibilities and having that solitude after my marriage in 1996.

I had lots of time to reflect on the past years and the years to come during my travel. The wonderful memories and days spent with family & friends, how I have changed and grown over past few years, the opportunities lying ahead and what I want from my life.

It was a wonderful experience to escape from the fast and complex modern world and live a quieter life for a few days.

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

I wanted to make full use of my short stay in Udiapur this time and planned for a walk down memory lane.

I got up at 5.30 am and went for a walk to a popular lake Fateh Sagar near my house with mom and my camera.

Ah..the joy of breathing, walking and smelling the fresh air…one of the beautiful experiences I miss a lot living in a metro city.

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

I walked down the old city of Udaipur…reliving the childhood moments spent in the narrow streets and temples around the area.

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

Nothing much has changed except that a mall has appeared where my granny once lived.

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

I saw many shops cropping up in the neighborhood selling antiques, now that Udaipur is one of the popular tourist destinations of India.

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

Mom roasted a few local varieties of corn or Bhutta on a Sigdi (indigenous Indian stove).

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

Me and mom had a wonderful time sitting in her verandah discussing food, garden, children and  life in general.

She loves gardening and I spotted these round beautiful chillies there.

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

How can my Udaipur trip be complete without the popular ‘Matka Kulfi’…mom holding the Kulfi for a click.

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

I asked her to prepare some of my favorite dishes…Makki ki roti, Tinda subji and Gunda Achaar on my plate…happiness is home!

Some more pictures of Udaipur trip here.

Rose preserve or Gulkand

I did not inform any of my relatives about this trip as I had very little time in hand. But the neighbors got to know that I was there and I was pampered with delicious Rajasthani delicacies every day. One of them brought these Gulkand mewa burfi and also presented a bottle of Gulkand (rose preserve) to me.

The base ingredient for this Burfi is Mewa, which is nothing but an assortment of dried fruits and nuts. Rose preserve adds a wonderful flavor to the fudge.

Back at home I made my own Gulkand and recreated the same Burfi for Diwali. I prefer these delicacies over the milk based sweets which are way to sweet for me.

Normally desi variety of pink roses or Damascus roses is used to make the Gulkand recipe. These roses give lovely flavor and perfect wetness to the preserve. The Gulkand can be used to flavor ice-creams, Firni, milkshakes, smoothies, Indian desserts or even in baked goodies.

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

Ingredients;

  • 1 cup packed rose petals
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 10-12 cardamom pods

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

Method; Remove petals from the flower and rinse in plain water.

Spread the petals on a towel and let it dry.

Remove seeds from cardamom and crush it coarsely.

Take a clean sterilized glass bottle and add handful of petals in the bottle, sprinkle a little cardamom powder and layer it with little sugar.

Repeat the same process till the bottle is full.

Cover the bottle with a clean muslin cloth and place the bottle in sunlight.

The Gulkand will be ready in 3-4 weeks time. The Gulkand stays good for many months.

Fig & Date Fudge with Rose preserve aka Gulkand Mewa Burfi

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits
Ingredients;

(make 20 small pieces)

  • 1 cup chopped Dates
  • 1/2 cup chopped dried Figs
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts
  • 1 tbsp. Ghee
  • 1 tbsp. Gulkand or rose preserve
  • Silver foil (optional)

healthy festive sweet with nuts and fruits

Method; Soak chopped Figs and Dates in 2 cups of warm water for 3 hours. Drain the water and grind both the dried fruits in a blender. Add a little water if you find it difficult to grind. You don’t need to soak the dried fruits if you get the juicy variety of the same.

Coarsely crush all the nuts with a rolling pin. I used Pistachios, almonds and a few cashew nuts in this recipe.

Heat ghee in a non-stick pan, add all the crushed nuts in it and sauté for a few seconds.

Add ground figs and Dates puree in it and cook it on medium heat till the mixture becomes dry and starts leaving the sides of the pan, about 10-12 minutes.

Add rose preserve, combine well and take the pan off flame.

Grease a flat tray with oil and spread the cooked mixture over it. Press it with the back of a ladle to make it even.

Decorate it with a silver foil, if using. Refrigerate the tray for 2-3 hours before slicing the Gulkand Mewa Burfi or Fig and Date fudge.

Notes;

  1. Use dried edible rose petals if you can’t find rose preserve.
  2. Add 2-3 tbsp. Mawa or thickened milk while cooking the dry fruit puree to get a richer version for the recipe.
  3. Mawa could be substituted with milk powder mixed with cream.
  4. Add extra sugar if you find the recipe less sweet, the sweetness from Dates and figs make it mildly sweet and relatively healthy recipe.
  5. Gulkand has loads of sugar, use it sparingly in your dishes.
  6. Increase the amount of ghee or clarified butter to get a sheen on the Burfi.
  7. Try this fudge recipe for another healthy sweet.

Happy Diwali to all of you!

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Recipe | Indian style open-faced Sandwiches – A walk down the memory lane http://litebite.in/healthy-breakfast-sandwich-recipe/ http://litebite.in/healthy-breakfast-sandwich-recipe/#comments Mon, 13 Oct 2014 09:16:49 +0000 http://litebite.in/?p=11314 "We do not know the value of our moments until they have become a memory.”  ~Sam H. The saying reflects my school days, perfectly. I didn’t give much thought back then, but school days and school friends were the best.

Days pass and memories fade. We just didn’t realize how soon time flew past. Distance, family commitments and work pressure is keeping many of us away from each other. But our bond of friendship is still strong and the good memories are with us forever.

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healthy breakfast sandwich recipe

“We do not know the value of our moments until they have become a memory.”  ~Sam H. The saying reflects my school days, perfectly. I didn’t give much thought back then, but school days and school friends were the best.

Days pass and memories fade. We just didn’t realize how soon time flew past. Distance, family commitments and work pressure is keeping many of us away from each other. But our bond of friendship is still strong and the good memories are with us forever.

I recently got a chance to attend an alumni meet of my old school in Udaipur.  I grabbed the golden opportunity and booked my tickets to meet some of the old teachers, catch up with old friends and to walk down the memory lane once again.

The meet was the outcome of hard work put in by some of our super seniors who managed to rope in many of our old teachers and KV students from as old as 1965 batches.

I reached the school premises well ahead of time to capture some of my favorite spots, classrooms and to relive the moments in silence.  Well, it’s hard to let go of the past when it’s holding some of the best memories.

Imagine my delight when the organizers asked me to share my experience on stage for two minutes. It was a privilege indeed!

healthy breakfast sandwich recipe

Two minutes may not be sufficient to sum up the experiences of ten years of my school life. Those beautiful memories and golden moments are beyond words. But I take the opportunity to thank our teachers who prepared us to face the bigger challenges of life and have made us the person we are today”.  this is how I summed up my ten years of KV school life in two minute impromptu speech.

Recipe | Healthy open-faced Indian style Sandwiches
Back to school after almost 30 years.

We were the naughtiest batch in our school. We would sneak around the corridor, jump and dance on the benches, polish off lunch boxes before the bell rings, shout, scream, tease…yes, we did it all :)

Not to mention, there are many achievers from our batch and many others have reached unprecedented heights with their careers.

healthy breakfast sandwich recipe

Walking down the memory lane….school corridor…those were the days…

healthy vegetarian sandwich recipe

 

Reliving the nostalgia…with some of the old classmates…nothing much has changed since 1986.

Healthy open-faced Indian style Sandwiches

Recipe | Healthy breakfast sandwich recipe

Leaving children behind for almost a week was the toughest decision for me. But on the other hand it makes me happier that by doing so their confidence level has increased manifold.

And this time around to my surprise they asked me not to spoon feed them with pre cooked food. “Mom, daddy’s Daal (lentil), Upma and Poha scores better than yours” was my son’s remark after I returned back from Udaipur.

Hmm….good for me.

One of the breakfast dishes they cooked when I was away for a week was this savory vegetables open faced sandwiches, which is a Sunday favorite at my home.

The sandwich daddy made was slightly gooey from inside but I liked it” my daughter told and smiled, making sure not to upset their daddy.

Recipe | Healthy breakfast sandwich recipe

Ingredients;

(serve 2)

  • 3 slices of brown bread
  • 1/2 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/2 cup green gram sprouts
  • 2 green chilies
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 large tomato
  • 1 capsicum
  • Coriander and mint leaves
  • 1/2 tsp chilly flakes
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Pinch of asafetida powder
  • Water as required
  • Oil to shallow fry

Recipe | Healthy breakfast sandwich recipe

Method; Finely chop onion, green chilies, tomato, coriander leaves, mint leaves and capsicum.

Take a large bowl and add chickpea flour, sprouts, salt, chilly flakes, asafoetida powder, turmeric powder and stir with a fork to combine all the ingredients.

Recipe | Healthy breakfast sandwich recipe

Pour sufficient water in the bowl to make a batter of pouring consistency.

Heat a griddle or set a sandwich toaster ready.

Slice the breads and dip each slice in the batter.

Place each slice on hot griddle, scoop out some chopped vegetables from the batter with a spoon and add it on the bread slices.

Recipe | Healthy breakfast sandwich recipe

Drizzle a few drops of oil around it and let it cook for 2-3 minutes on both the sides. Serve the savory open-face sandwiches with tomato sauce or any chutney of your choice.

Notes;

  1. Use the same chickpea flour batter to make crepes or Indian Cheela.
  2. Add grated vegetables of your choice to make this breakfast recipe more healthier.
  3. I have used my sandwich maker to cook these slices, you could use a griddle or tawa to make the same.
  4. Coarsely grind all the vegetables and sprouts for a different texture and easy to handle bread slices.

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Recipe | Quick Fried Rice with Capsicum and Almonds – It’s all Greek to me.. http://litebite.in/recipe-quick-fried-rice-with-capsicum/ http://litebite.in/recipe-quick-fried-rice-with-capsicum/#comments Fri, 26 Sep 2014 03:33:57 +0000 http://litebite.in/?p=11296 Any recognition feels good, as it is a reward and an affirmation of what one does...Hmm..agreed. But what one does when one is featured in two different magazines and is still trying to decipher what is written in there.

Google translation of both the articles makes it a comic read. Well, sometimes, somethings are best if left unsaid. Hoping good is written about me :)  here is how it all started...

The other day I received this mail from the editor of a popular Italian magazine;

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healthy, quick and easy fried rice with capsicum and almonds

Any recognition feels good, as it is a reward and an affirmation of what one does…Hmm..agreed. But what one does when one is featured in two different magazines and is still trying to decipher what is written in there.

Google translation of both the articles makes it a comic read. Well, sometimes, somethings are best if left unsaid. Hoping good is written about me :)  here is how it all started…

The other day I received this mail from the editor of a popular Italian magazine;

Dear Sanjeeta, I’m writing you from the Cucchiaio d’Argento office in Italy. We liked your blog and we’re wondering if you would like to be part of an extraordinary project with us. I am the ‘food’ media partner for The Hundred-Foot Journey” movie, which will be coming to the Italian cinemas at the very beginning of October.”

“So as you noticed the story brings together Indian cuisine, inspiration and love, which your blog is full of. We would be grateful if you represent India with some of the rustic foods from your country.” she continued and waited for my reply.

healthy vegetarian recipes

And then our humble ‘Raab‘ becomes Budino di farina di mais con latticello and Mooli Thepla travels to Italy as Thepla di ravanelli through a page called Amore, cucina e curry e le ricette di Sanjeeta or Love, food & curry recipe and Sanjeeta.

Recipe | Quick Fried Rice with Capsicum and Almonds
Oh…there is one more…a feature article about my work in a popular regional magazine of South India called ‘Aval Vikatan‘ this month.

Quick Brown rice with Capsicum and Almonds

Recipe | Quick Fried Rice with Capsicum and Almonds

This is one rice recipe which is an absolute favorite of my son. Good for me as apart from being a quick meal to cook, there is also a lot of goodness of brown rice, nuts and vegetables in it.

The brown rice I use is quick to cook unlike the normal brown rice which takes ages to cook even after soaking it for hours.

Recipe | Quick Fried Rice with Capsicum and Almonds

Ingredients;

(serve 2)

  • 2 cups chopped Bell peppers
  • 1 cup Brown Basmati rice
  • 1 large onion
  • 8-10 Almonds
  • 2 green chillies
  • 2 tbsp Peanut oil or sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp. chopped spring onions
  • 1 tsp. grated ginger
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • Salt to taste

Spices

  • 5-6 Black peppercorns
  • 3 cloves
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • A small cinnamon stick (1 inch)
  • 1 star anise

Recipe | Quick Fried Rice with Capsicum and Almonds

Method; Wash and soak brown Basmati rice for an hour.

Cook brown Basmati rice in a steamer or pressure cooker (one whistle) with one and a half cup of water.

Chop coloured Bell peppers (shimla mirch) into small cubes. Finely slice onion and grate a small piece of ginger. Roughly crush almonds into small pieces.

Heat oil in a wok or Kadai and add cloves (laung), peppercorn (kali irch), cardamom pods (elaichi), star anise and crushed almonds in it and sauté for a second.

Add sliced onion, grated ginger and chopped capsicum in the wok and sauté on high heat fro 3 minutes.

Take the wok off the flame and add lemon juice and chopped spring onions in it.

Add this Quick Fried Rice with Capsicum and Almonds in the wok and stir slowly to combine all the ingredients.

Serve with yogurt Raita.

Recipe | Quick Fried Rice with Capsicum and Almonds

Notes;

  1. You can cook the rice along with the vegetables, but this will make the veggies become soggy and loose the crunch in it.
  2. Use any other oil, but Peanut oil gives a better flavor to this recipe.
  3. Substitute brown rice with normal white or Basmati rice in the recipe if you wish.
  4. Do not overcook capsicum, keep the crunch in the vegetables for better taste.
  5. Walnuts, groundnuts or any other nuts would work as good as almonds in this recipe.
  6. Try replacing lemon juice with one tsp. of soya sauce for a different flavor to the recipe.

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Recipes | Three Quick Indian Stir-fry recipes aka Subzis http://litebite.in/recipes-indian-curries/ http://litebite.in/recipes-indian-curries/#comments Tue, 23 Sep 2014 11:30:17 +0000 http://litebite.in/?p=10847 A Subzi or vegetable stir-fry is an integral part of an Indian Thali (platter). If Subzi is one of the important components alongside a flat bread in a North Indian thali then it takes the form of an accompaniment to rice dishes in South India.

Subzi also refers to any vegetable in Hindi. I like these quick subzis made with fresh vegetables more than the slow-cooked curries wherein the vegetables are completely lost in the flavors of spices and gravies they are cooked in. Whether it is a rich Peas and paneer butter masala or a creamy malai kofta, to me they all taste same.

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Recipes | Quick Indian Stir-fry recipes aka Subzis

A Subzi or vegetable stir-fry is an integral part of an Indian Thali (platter). If Subzi is one of the important components alongside a flat bread in a North Indian thali then it takes the form of an accompaniment to rice dishes in South India.

Subzi also refers to any vegetable in Hindi. I like these quick subzis made with fresh vegetables more than the slow-cooked curries wherein the vegetables are completely lost in the flavors of spices and gravies they are cooked in. Whether it is a rich Peas and paneer butter masala or a creamy malai kofta, to me they all taste same.

I prefer the not-so-common indigenous or native vegetables some of which have a very peculiar taste for these stir-fry recipes.  Kantola or Kikoda, Parwal or pointed gourd, large chilies, bitter gourd, Karonda (a berry), Mogri fali (radish pods) make a wonderful stir-fry.

I don’t think one need to follow any particular recipe to get the best results when trying to cook a Subzi, they are so versatile. Just a few basic tricks, spices and fresh vegetables and you can make some of the most satisfying  meals ever.

I had some of the recipes for Indian Sabzis sitting in my draft for long and thought of making a combined post for the same.

1. Large Chilly-chickpea flour Sabzi

Recipes | Quick Indian Stir-fry recipes aka Subzis

Ingredients;

(serve 2)

  • 1 cup chopped large chilies
  • 2 tbsp chickpea flour
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp. dry mango powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Fenugreek seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. Nigella seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. aniseeds
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powde
  • 1/4 tsp. red chilly powder
  • A pinch of asafetida powder
  • Salt to taste

Recipes | Quick Indian Stir-fry recipes aka Subzis

Method; Wash and make slits in each chilly and remove the seeds from the chilies.

Chop all the chilies into small pieces.

Dry roast chickpea flour in a pan for 5-6 minutes on medium heat.

Heat oil in a nonstick pan and splutter aniseeds (saunf), fenugreek seeds (methi dana) and Nigella (kalonji) seeds in it.

Add chopped chilies, red chilly powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, salt, asafetida powder (hing) and cook on high heat for 2 minutes.

Reduce the heat, add roasted chickpea flour and dry mango powder in it and combine all the ingredients well.

Put off the flame and serve the spicy chilly stir-fry with Indian flat breads or as an accompaniment for rice dishes.

2. Quick Green Eggplant Mash or Baingan  Bharta 

Recipes | Quick Indian Stir-fry recipes aka Subzis

Ingredients;

(serve 2)

  • 7-8 long green Brinjals
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 large tomato
  • 3 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp. garlic-ginger paste
  • 1 tbsp roasted and crushed peanuts
  • Chopped coriander leaves to garnish
  • Salt to taste

Spices;

  • 1 tsp. Dry fenugreek leaves (Kasuri Methi)
  • 1 tbsp. coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp. red chilly powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. Garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • A pinch of asafetida powder

Recipes | Quick Indian Stir-fry recipes aka Subzis

Method; Roast the green brinjals on direct flame till their skin turn charred or black in colour. This gives a wonderful smoky flavour to the curry. Avoid roasting if you don’t like the smoky flavour and cut roundels of green brinjals instead.

Remove the charred skin and take out the pulp of each brijal in a bowl.

Finely chop onion and tomato.

Heat oil in a wok or kadai and splutter cumin seeds in it. Add chopped onion and sauté for 2 minutes.

Add ginger-garlic paste, chopped tomatoes, cover the kadai and cook for another 2 minutes.

Remove the lid and slightly mash the tomato.

Add chopped brinjal or brinjal pulp, coriander powder, chilly powder, turmeric powder, salt, cover and cook for 4-5 minutes on medium heat.

Put off the flame and add crushed Kasuri methi, garam masala powder, chopped coriander leaves and serve spicy Eggplant curry with flat breads or with plain rice.

3. Long Bean-Potato Stir-fry or Chawla Fali Sabzi

Recipes | Quick Indian Stir-fry recipes aka Subzis

Ingredients;

(serve 2)

  • 2 cups chopped Long beans
  • 2 potatoes
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp. grated ginger
  • 2 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. red chilly powder
  • 1/2 tsp carom seeds
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste

Recipes | Quick Indian Stir-fry recipes aka Subzis

Method; Wash and remove strings (remove hard thread or fiber) from the Long beans or chawla phalli from both the sides. These beans are also called Long beans/Yardlong beans/snake beans in English.

Peel and dice potatoes in small cubes and finely chop the onion.

Recipes | Quick Indian Stir-fry recipes aka Subzis

Heat oil in a pan and crackle carom seeds or ajwain in it. Add red chilly powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, asafetida powder, grated ginger and chopped onion in it and cook for 3-4 minutes.

Add chopped beans and potatoes in the pan and cook for 10 minutes stirring in between, and put off the flame.

Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve with Indian flat breads.

Notes;

  1. Do not over cook the vegetables, keep them slightly under-cooked to retain the crunch in them.
  2. These Sabzis taste delicious when they are served and eaten immediately after they are cooked.
  3. Keep the flame medium to high to while cooking these vegetables to seal the moisture of the veggies inside.
  4. I prefer adding salt at the last as vegetables tend to release moisture when salt is added to them while cooking.
  5. Use Capsicum instead of Bhavnagari mirch to make the spicy chilly stir-fry recipe.
  6. A little extra oil added to the chilly recipe would help make it stay for longer time.

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Recipes | Three easy Indian Stir-Fry recipes aka Subzis – Simple food big flavors http://litebite.in/recipes-indian-vegetarian-curries/ http://litebite.in/recipes-indian-vegetarian-curries/#comments Tue, 23 Sep 2014 11:29:49 +0000 http://litebite.in/?p=10850 I am jealous of your husband and kids, they get to eat five-star cooking every day” was one of the questions in an online interview on Ganga’s blog here. And she is the nth person to have said the same to me.

The fact remains that most of days what comes out of my kitchen is a simple one-skillet meal with whatever spices or vegetables I have on hand. Yes, my personal favorite is simple Indian food which is quick to cook and is very near to its natural state.

Well...competing for the title of Master Chef is never in my mind, every time that I take a ladle in my hand :)

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Recipes | Easy Indian Stir-Fry recipes aka Subzis

I am jealous of your husband and kids, they get to eat five-star cooking every day” was one of the questions in an online interview on Ganga’s blog here. And she is the nth person to have said the same to me.

The fact remains that most of days what comes out of my kitchen is a simple one-skillet meal with whatever spices or vegetables I have on hand. Yes, my personal favorite is simple Indian food which is quick to cook and is very near to its natural state.

Well…competing for the title of Master Chef is never in my mind, every time that I take a ladle in my hand :)

Indian Subzi (Indian vegetable stir-fry) or fresh vegetables cooked in minimal spices is an absolute favorite of mine. No matter what the occasion is, I always have a subzi or two on my thali (platter) to go with phulkas (Indian flat breads) or rice.

I do like the Indian spicy Channa masala, creamy Rajma (kidney beans) and paneer butter masala on my platter at times. But nothing makes me hungry faster, than a generous bowl of freshly cooked vegetables placed next to a Phulkas (Indian flat bread) on my plate.

I prefer the not-so-common indigenous or native vegetables such as Kantola or Kikoda, Parwal or pointed gourd, large chilies, bitter gourd, Karonda (a berry), Mogri fali (radish pods), some of which have a very peculiar taste but make a wonderful stir-fry.

These Indian Subzis are so versatile yet so simple to prepare. I don’t think one need to follow any particular recipe to get the best results when trying to cook a Subzi, they are so versatile. One just need to master a few cooking tricks and get familiar with the aromatic Indian spices to dish out a mouth-watering Indian food in minutes.

Subzis are similar to Asian stir fry recipes where vegetable is the star ingredient.  While the texture of vegetable in most of the Indian curries is lost and is overpowered by the spices, thick sauces and rich gravies.

But these easy- to-prepare, delicious and nutrient dense recipes are a wonderful way to please your taste buds without adding a calorie bomb to your diet.

1. Mixed Vegetable Stir-fry

Recipes | Easy Indian Stir-Fry recipes aka Subzis

Ingredients;

(serve 3)

  • 1 cup cauliflower florets
  • 1 large potato
  • 1/2 cup fresh peas
  • 2 large onions
  • 2 large tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp. Kasuri Methi (dry fenugreek leaves)

Spices;

  • 2 tsp. freshly ground coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp. chilly powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • A pinch of asafetida powder
  • Salt to taste

Recipes | Easy Indian Stir-Fry recipes aka Subzis

Method; Cut small florets of cauliflower and wash thoroughly with water.

Peel and chop potato.

Grate ginger, onions, tomatoes and garlic. Crush coriander seeds in a pestle and mortar.

Heat oil in a pan and crackle cumin seeds. Add grated onion, tomato, garlic and ginger into it and sauté for 2-3 minutes.

Add freshly ground coriander seeds, chilly, turmeric and asafetida powder in the pan and combine well.

Add chopped vegetables, fresh peas in the pan, cover and let it cook on medium heat for 7-8 minutes.

Take the pan off the flame and add garam masala and crushed Kasuri methi in the mixed vegetable curry. Serve with flat breads or plain rice.

2. Kantola Stir-fry or Quick Kikoda Subzi

Recipes | Easy Indian Stir-Fry recipes aka Subzis

Ingredients;

(serve 2)

  • 9-10 Kantolas or Kikodas
  • 32 large onions
  • 3 dry red chilies
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • Salt to taste

Recipes | Easy Indian Stir-Fry recipes aka Subzis

Method; Wash and thinly slice the Kikodas and onions. Break the red chillies into small pieces.

Heat oil in a kadai and splutter cumin seeds in it.

Add red chilly pieces, sliced onion, kikodas, salt and cook for 5-6 minutes on medium heat.

Do not overcook and let the vegetable become too soggy.

Serve this simple and delicious Kikoda curry with Indian flat breads.

3. Pointed Gourd Stir-fry or Parwal ki Sabzi

Recipes | Easy Indian Stir-Fry recipes aka Subzis

Ingredients;

(serve 2)

  • 7-8 Pointed gourd or Parval
  • 2 potatoes
  • 2 tbsp yogurt
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp. red chilly powder
  • 1 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste

Recipes | Easy Indian Stir-Fry recipes aka Subzis

Method; Wash Parwal & potatoes and chop into small pieces.

Roughly chop tomato and onion.

Grind chopped onion and tomato with yogurt into fine paste.

Add red chilly, turmeric and coriander powder into the above paste.

Heat oil in a wok/kadai and splutter cumin seeds in it.

Add yogurt and spice paste in it and cook for 4-5 minutes on medium heat.

Add chopped Parwal and potato in the pan and cook for 7-8 minutes till the potatoes are done.

Recipes | Easy Indian Stir-Fry recipes aka Subzis

Most of these native vegetables have acquired taste which many may not like.

Check Glossary for English & Hindi names of various foods and ingredients used  in Indian cooking.

Notes;

  1. Do not over cook the vegetables, keep them slightly under-cooked to retain the crunch in them.
  2. These Sabzis taste delicious when they are served and eaten immediately after they are cooked.
  3. Keep the flame medium to high to while cooking these vegetables to seal the moisture of the veggies inside.
  4. I prefer adding salt at the last as vegetables tend to release moisture when salt is added to them while cooking.

Check Glossary for English & Hindi names of various foods and ingredients.

 

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Recipes | Healthy Wholegrain and Lentil Crepes with quick Spreads – Memories which root us in a time and place http://litebite.in/recipes-healthy-wholegrain-crepes/ http://litebite.in/recipes-healthy-wholegrain-crepes/#comments Mon, 15 Sep 2014 08:00:49 +0000 http://litebite.in/?p=10832 Growing up, we used to visit our granny every holiday. Reaching late at her house and being treated with warm and comforting Bajra khichda (millet porridge) was the best part of our trip.

She would welcome us with a sweet smile and rush to her kitchen to cook a quick meal. The wooden hearth would be hurriedly filled with charcoal to light the fire. She would then open the large round aluminum box placed neatly on wooden shelf and take out handful of wholegrain and lentil grits from it.

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healthy wholegrain crepes, egg free and vegan

Growing up, we used to visit our granny every holiday. Reaching late at her house and being treated with warm and comforting Bajra khichda (millet porridge) was the best part of our trip.

She would welcome us with a sweet smile and rush to her kitchen to cook a quick meal. The wooden hearth would be hurriedly filled with charcoal to light the fire. She would then open the large round aluminum box placed neatly on wooden shelf and take out handful of wholegrain and lentil grits from it.

The spice-mixed grits were added to the earthen pot of boiling water on the hearth. In between her cooking, she would look at us admiringly from the side of her glasses and continue stirring the pot vigorously with a wooden ladle pouring ghee at regular intervals.

The food she cooked was plain and simple but it has created many enduring memories. These  memories are so special that they root us in a time & place making us happy every time that we cook the same food at home.

My mom follows the same and her kitchen shelves are always stacked with jars filled with various combinations of spices, lentils, millet and other cereal grits.

At home I do follow the same. These time-saving, versatile wholegrain & lentil mixes are really handy when you need a quick meal or are lazy to spend hours in your kitchen. There are many other ways these grits could be used to make a nourishing meal. I whip up a savory porridge, a healthy vegetable Khichdi, breakfast pancakes or Bisi-Bhele Bhat with these mixes.

Here is what I did with one of my red rice and lentil mix the other day, I made delicious crepes or Dosas or Chilla as called in India. Call it an Indian Pesarattu, Adai, Cheela or any other name, these crepes make a filling and healthy breakfast treat.

I have used a mix of brown rice and a popular Indian variety of Kerala rice called ‘Matta‘ rice in this recipe, you can use any other rice you wish.

1. Red rice lentil crepes

Recipes | Healthy Wholegrain Crepes

Ingredients;

(makes 10-12 crepes)

  • 1 cup red rice
  • 1/4 cup split green gram
  • 1/4 cup pigeon pea
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tbsp black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  • Coriander leaves
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • Oil
  • Water

Recipes | Healthy Wholegrain Crepes

Method;

Wash red rice, green gram (moong dal) and pigeon pea (toovar dal) with water and dry in sunlight for a day.

Coarsely grind red rice, both the lentils, with black peppercorns (kali mirch) and cumin seeds (jeera).

Store the above mix in an air-tight container. It stays good for many days.

Recipes | Healthy Wholegrain Crepes

For making the crepes, take one cup of above grain and lentil mix and soak in water for an hour.

Grind the soaked rice-lentil mix into fine paste using a cup of water.

Add salt, finely chopped onion and coriander leaves to the batter and keep it aside for an hour.

Heat a griddle and pour a ladleful of batter on it. Spread the batter with the back of ladle into a thin circle.

Drizzle a few drops of oil and cook it for a minute.

Recipes | Healthy Wholegrain Crepes

Flip to other side and cook for another minute till the crepe becomes crisp.

Serve with green chutney or tomato sauce.

2. Foxtail Millet lentil crepes

Recipes | Healthy Wholegrain Crepes

Ingredients;

(makes 10-12 crepes)

  • 1 cup Foxtail millet
  • 1/2 cup Bengal gram
  • 1/2 cup Black gram
  • 2 dry red chilies
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tsp. grated ginger
  • Coriander leaves
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Oil
  • water

Recipes | Healthy Wholegrain Crepes

Method; Wash and soak Foxtail millet, Bengal gram (chana dal), and black gram (urad dal) in water for an hour.

Grind the soaked millet and lentil with cumin seeds and red chilies using one cup of water into fine batter.

Recipes | Healthy Wholegrain Crepes

Finely chop onion, ginger and coriander leaves and add it to the batter. Add salt to the batter and let it rest for an hour.

Heat a griddle and pour a ladleful of batter on it. Spread the batter to make a pancake or crepe.  Drizzle a little oil and cook on both the sides till it s crisp. Serve with chutney or a dollop of fresh butter.

Read on wiki about Foxtail millet . Here are the recipes of the two quick spreads served with these crepes above;

1. Coriander yogurt chutney

Ingredients;

  • 1 cup chopped coriander leaves
  • 1/4 cup chopped mint leaves
  • 2 tbsp. yogurt
  • 1 onion
  • 3 green chilies
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. roasted cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Method; Grind coriander leaves and mint leaves with green chilies, garlic cloves and salt into fine paste.

Take it out in a bowl and add rest of the ingredients and store in refrigerator.

2. Peanut-tomato chutney

Ingredients;

  • 3 medium tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup roasted and shelled peanuts
  • 1 tsp. tamarind paste
  • 2 tsp. red chilly powder
  • 1 tbsp. oil
  • 1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp. mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • A pinch of asafetida powder

Method;  Grind roasted and shelled peanuts into coarse powder.

Heat oil in a pan and add crackle mustard seeds in it. Add chopped tomatoes, , turmeric powder, red chilly powder, tamarind paste, salt and cook for 4-5 minutes on medium heat.

Add coarsely ground peanut powder, asafetida powder and take it off from flame. Store the chutney in refrigerator. The chutney stays good for a week.

Notes;

  1. Use buttermilk to grind the batter for Foxtail millet crepes.
  2. Use the grits to make a quick healthy Khichdi‘ or porridge.
  3. You can even powder the grits and store for making instant crepes.
  4. Replace Foxtail millet with any other millet of your choice to make these crepes.
  5. Keep the batter slightly liquid or runny to get thin crepes. You may find it slightly difficult to spread the thin batter initially.
  6. These crepes does not require any fermentation.
  7. Prepare the batter a day before and refrigerate to make quick healthy breakfast crepes in morning.

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Recipe | Healthy Papdi Chaat Tarts- It’s all about sharing my love for food http://litebite.in/recipe-savory-healthy-indian-tarts/ http://litebite.in/recipe-savory-healthy-indian-tarts/#comments Sat, 06 Sep 2014 09:20:28 +0000 http://litebite.in/?p=10812 “What keeps me motivated is not the food itself but all the bonds and memories the food represents.” M. Chiarello
I was slightly disturbed reading a message from a reader last evening which read like this “I love your recipes, but please include step-wise pictures of the recipes and increase the frequency of your blogposts.”
To which my reply was, “I am glad that you like the recipes here. But please understand that Lite Bite is not just a recipe blog, it’s my personal diary where I also love to share my ...

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healthy vegetarian recipes

What keeps me motivated is not the food itself but all the bonds and memories the food represents.” M. Chiarello

I was slightly disturbed reading a message from a reader last evening which read like this “I love your recipes, but please include step-wise pictures of the recipes and increase the frequency of your blogposts.”

To which my reply was, “I am glad that you like the recipes here. But please understand that Lite Bite is not just a recipe blog, it’s my personal diary where I also love to share my experiences and stories behind the food I present. There are millions of wonderful food blogs where you can check any recipe you wish.” .

But the message did get me thinking for some time, till I was convinced that blogging to me is not merely jotting down the ingredients and to post delicious pictures of the food.

Food blogging to me is all about sharing my love for ‘food’ and about how it has inspired me stepping out of my comfort zone and make real changes in my life.

Lo and behold….just when I was about to publish this blogpost, I got the information from the feature writer about the article in a popular Indian National daily  ‘The Hindu‘  to cheer me up :)

And the article ends with these lines….

Sanjeeta knows her blog hasn’t merely helped her make inroads into the food industry but has also been an immense confidence booster. After quitting corporate life to raise children, the blog has steered her to creative enterprises. “It is empowering, of course. The reader’s response has boosted my confidence and given me wings to fly,” she says.

Blog busters

Healthy Papdi Chaat Tarts

healthy egg free savory tarts

Coming back to the recipe, it instantly reminds me of Besan ki papdi my granny used to make. Though I spent very little time with my grandmother but the time and food she shared with me is memorable.

Her slow cooked Kadhi, Daal Baati, Churma Laddo, Besan ki chakki and those thick crisp roti with Bajra (pearl millet) and cornmeal (makki) are some of the food I relished the most. But I am afraid my children are not one with me.

Besan ki Papdi is one of the festive treats my grandmother loved making during Diwali. Oh..yes, we were given small hammers (musal) to beat the papdi dough with it, which was a fun activity for the children.

I enjoyed every single bite of those delicious, warm, crispy little discs. When I make the same at home my children would take one or two of the Papdis just to please me.

And this is when I thought of giving it a makeover and combined papdi recipe to make these Papdi Chaat Tarts.

Make these tarts ahead and refrigerate, it stays good for about 6-7 days.  Use them to make instant healthy breakfast or tea-time snack with interesting fillings and serve.

healthy egg free savory tarts

Ingredients;

(makes 10-12)

For Crusts;

  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 2 tbsp wheat flour
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp. red chilly powder
  • 1/4 tsp. Carrom seeds
  • 1/4 tsp. Baking soda
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 1/4th cup Water
  • Oil for deep frying

Filling;

  • 1/2 cup Green gram sprouts
  • 1/2 cup chopped coloured bell pepper
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tsp. oil
  • 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. Chaat masala (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • Fresh coriander leaves
  • Cheese (optional)

healthy egg free savory tarts

Method;

Chickpea flour Crusts; Combine chickpea flour (besan), wheat flour, carom seeds (ajwain), salt, chilly powder and baking soda in a large bowl.

Add oil and mix it with your fingers to make crumbs of flour.

Add little water at a time and knead all the ingredients to get a stiff or hard dough.

Cover the dough and keep it aside for 20 minutes.

Pre-heat over at 200°C and grease tart shells with oil.

Pinch small balls of dough and roll it into thin discs. Alternatively you can make a large thin chapatti and cut small circles with a cutter.

Place these small circles on tart shells and press firmly.

Prick each crust with fork.

Bake the tart shells for 10-12 minutes or until they turn golden brown in coluor.

Cool the tart shells and store it in air-tight container.

healthy egg free savory tarts

Stuffing; Finely chop onion and all the bell peppers (shimla mirch). Heat oil in a pan and cook chopped capsicum and sprouts for just 1 minutes on high heat.

Take the stuffing off the flame, add rest of the ingredients (except cheese, if using) and mix well. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.

healthy egg free savory tarts

Fill the tart shells with a large tablespoon of above filling and add grated cheese to make it more exotic snack recipe. Sprinkle a little Indian Chaat masala and serve.

healthy egg free savory tarts

Use this recipe of Mini Oat Tarts or these Wholewheat Tarts I posted some time back on Lite Bite. These tarts are thick and more crusty in texture to make these savory version.

Ingredients for Oat crust; 

  • 1/2 cup quick cooking oats
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp. or more milk
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon powder
  • A pinch of salt

Notes;

  1. Make sure you roll the dough very thin to get crisp tart crusts.
  2. Use vegetables such as grated coloured cabbage, corn kernel, fresh sweet peas or even boiled lentils and legumes such as peanuts, chickpeas to the filling.
  3. Chaat masala is a tangy Indian spice-mix made by powdering dried mango and cumin seeds.
  4. Add sweet and spicy Dates chutney to the filling to make it tastier.
  5. I often use these tart shells to make Paani- puri, a popular Indian street food.
  6. You can even deep fry the tarts instead of baking them for a much crispy treat.

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Recipes | Healthy Dill and Potato Oats Crackers – One opportunity leads directly to another http://litebite.in/recipes-healthy-dill-crackers/ http://litebite.in/recipes-healthy-dill-crackers/#comments Mon, 25 Aug 2014 09:04:55 +0000 http://litebite.in/?p=10772 'When you take the step towards your dreams, you will be met with fears because you have never traveled this way before. As you go, you will discover that you had nothing to fear.' ~ Gardner

Just as risk leads to more risk, one opportunity leads directly to another. And talking about this opportunity, quite honestly, I never thought that such opportunities could come my way through food blogging.

Some days back, I received a call from a representative of a very popular multinational food manufacturing company

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healthy dill crackers

‘When you take the step towards your dreams, you will be met with fears because you have never traveled this way before. As you go, you will discover that you had nothing to fear.’ ~ Gardner

Just as risk leads to more risk, one opportunity leads directly to another. And talking about this opportunity, quite honestly, I never thought that such opportunities could come my way through food blogging.

Some days back, I received a call from a representative of a very popular multinational food manufacturing company Kellogg.

Kellogg’s Asia pacific has organized a two day ‘Product Ideation’ workshop in Mumbai and they have selected you as one of the participants. The workshop is to generate ideas on Indian breakfast recipes which are convenient to cook in morning and are healthy too. There will be a mix of participants from India and abroad in a team to work on a given platform.” He informed me over phone and asked me to confirm my participation through mail.

And as I always do, I opened the topic to hubby on the dinner table that night. “It  sounded like a good idea with lot of scope for learning, sharing and making new friends. But then again, the thought of leaving children, traveling and staying alone makes me little apprehensive.”

Stop giving reasons now, you are fortunate enough to have been given a second chance to start a new life. Seize every wonderful opportunity coming your way. Learn new things and grow as a better person. Isn’t that what you want to show your children?” My hubby replied matter-of-factly and waited for my next question.

Well, hubby’s pep-talks have become a sort of ritual of late, before I take my first step to any new assignment :)

I took the assignment after a few days of cross-checking and bothering the concerned people from the company with my mails.

And it proved to be a wise decision!

It was one of those events where you meet people from across the world and get to learn the cross-cultural perspective of food.

healthy dill cracekrs

The cheerful and friendly  ‘Ideation team’ at Hotel Novotel in Mumbai.

healthy dill crackers and product ideation workshop

Met the talented trio of Mumbai food bloggers….Rhea, Kalyan and Romi.

healthy dill crackers and product ideation workshop

A click with the celebrity chef Ranveer Brar who pampered us with some of the most delicious spreads for two days.

healthy dill crackers and product ideation workshop

Room with a view

I took the early morning flight and reached the venue directly. My room was booked in the same hotel. The day was hectic with lots of engaging activities and insight on the food industry.

Evening was quiet, I went out for a walk on the beach. With overcast skies and intermittent showers, the weather was amazing in Mumbai. The enthusiastic evening walkers and playful children around the beach kept me engaged till it was too dark.

Back in my room, I started working upon the platforms given to us for the next day session. The sounds of the sea and splashing waves was soothing. I was completely at peace in my calm and serene room facing the magnificent Juhu beach.

As the lunch menu was too heavy, I skipped dinner and opted for a cup of warm Chamomile tea with a few Dill crackers I baked at home.

Healthy Dill and Potato Oats Crackers

healthy dill crackers and product ideation workshop

Dill or Suva is an annual aromatic herb used commonly in many North Indian dishes such as flat breads (roti), cold salads (with boiled aloo) and lentil (daal) recipes.

Due to the sweet after-taste of Dill, it is used as mouth freshener or Mukhwas in West India.  Dill has good digestive properties and imparts a distinct flavor to any dish.

I often use Dill seeds in baking savory dishes. These crackers are a twisted version of dill and potato rotis we make at home.

Check this recipe for more flaky and crispy biscuits.

healthy dill crackers and product ideation workshop

Check this recipe of quick and healthy warm chickpea salad with Dill leaves.

healthy dill crackers and product ideation workshop

Ingredients;

(Make about 15 crackers)

  • 1 cup Oats
  • 1/2 cup Wheat flour
  • 3 tbsp oil + 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 cup mashed Potato
  • 2 tbsp. chopped dill leaves
  • 2 tbsp yogurt
  • 1 tsp dry red chilly flakes
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. carom seeds

healthy dill crackers and product ideation workshop

Method; Preheat the oven to 190°C and grease a baking tray with oil.

Boil and mash the potato. Coarsely grind the Oats (I used quick cooking Oats).

Wash and finely chop Dill (suva) leaves.

Take both the flours in a large bowl, add carom seeds (ajwain), dried red chilly flakes, chopped Dill leaves, baking powder, salt to it and mix well.

Add oil and softened butter in the above flour and mix lightly to get bread crumbs like texture.

Add mashed potato and yogurt or curd (dahi) in the bowl and bring all the ingredients together to form hard dough.

Take a large portion of the dough, dust it lightly with dry wheat flour and roll it into a large thin sheet with a rolling pin.

Cut the rolled out dough into squares or rounds with a sharp knife or a cookie cutter.

healthy dill crackers and product ideation workshop

Arrange all the squares onto a greased baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes. Turn the crackers to other side and bake for another 10 minutes.

Notes;

  1. Two plastic sheets would be very handy to roll the cracker dough into thin sheet.
  2. Baking time would depend upon the thickness of the crackers.
  3. Olive oil works wonder to give lovely taste and healthy touch to these crackers.
  4. Crackers are generally hard and dry in texture, add a little butter to make these crackers crisp.
  5. Replace oil and use softened butter for much flakier crackers.
  6. Use dried fenugreek leaves (Kasuri methi), coriander, mint or any other dried herbs such as rosemary, oregano or thyme to add different flavors to these crackers.
  7. Substitute grated cheese with oil and butter in the recipe and get another delicious version of these crackers. Make sure you reduce the quantity of salt accordingly.

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Recipe |Easy and healthy Purple cabbage Coleslaw – Life is too short to be anything but happy http://litebite.in/recipe-purple-cabbage-coleslaw-healthy/ http://litebite.in/recipe-purple-cabbage-coleslaw-healthy/#comments Sun, 17 Aug 2014 11:38:14 +0000 http://litebite.in/?p=10752 Like many other enthusiastic food bloggers, I too started blogging with the notion of organizing my recipes and connecting with like-minded people.

Little did I know that this simple hobby of mine would bestow me with countless precious gifts and many remarkable moments of life to cherish. Good friends, hours of endless entertainment and wonderful creative outlet are a few.

I recently had a chance to attend IFBM 2014 in Bangalore, which was organized exclusively for Indian food bloggers.

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Recipe |Easy and healthy Purple cabbage Coleslaw

Like many other enthusiastic food bloggers, I too started blogging with the notion of organizing my recipes and connecting with like-minded people.

Little did I know that this simple hobby of mine would bestow me with countless precious gifts and many remarkable moments of life to cherish. Good friends, hours of endless entertainment and wonderful creative outlet are a few.

I recently had a chance to attend IFBM 2014 in Bangalore, which was organized exclusively for Indian food bloggers.

And what a fabulous meet it turned out to be. There were workshops on photography & styling, lessons on food writing & self-publishing your cook book, tips on SEO & social media awareness just to name a few.

The meet has surely given wings & hopes to many enthusiastic cooks, aspiring cook book authors and budding food photographers of India to soar.

Here are a few snippets from the fondest memories and beautiful times shared with friends from the meet;

easy vegetarian recipes, egg free baking and healthy desserts.

Pic. courtesy IFBM members

Happy people are beautiful…well, don’t you think life is too short to be anything but happy.

We had a wonderful time staying together as one big family, caring and sharing space with each other. One of our local friends took us for a midnight ride in search for a cup of hot filter coffee.

Oh and the ruckus we made….we laughed till we literally started to cry sharing some of the hilarious moments, giggling, shouting, running around…we had such a fun time together!

healthy vegetarian recipes

Pic. courtesy IFBM members

The excitement did not end there for me. I had some of the best times of my life sharing my room with Deeba, who constantly inspires me with her humbleness and the amazing work on her blog Passionate about baking.

We chatted till the wee hours, shared some of the priceless moments of our professional and personal lives with each other…and I know I have got a friend for life.

easy vegetarian recipes, egg free baking and healthy desserts.

One of the many delicious spreads in the hotel during coffee breaks. Had a tough time deciding what to eat and what to leave….

easy vegetarian recipes, egg free baking and healthy desserts.

Pic. courtesy IFBM members

I was in the panel discussion on the topic ‘From blogging to business’ with some of the talented bloggers and cook book authors.

easy vegetarian recipes, egg free baking and healthy desserts.

Pic. courtesy IFBM members

And there was a prize waiting for me from Urban Dazzle….

easy vegetarian recipes, egg free baking and healthy desserts.

Just look at the amount of goodies some of the generous sponsors showered upon us…

easy vegetarian recipes, egg free baking and healthy desserts.

Well, these are the precious gifts I received from some of my thoughtful and loving blogger friends. The lovely handcrafted wooden tray with two spoons, antique kettle, grape-seed oil, black poppy seeds and a lovely cook book.

And I used the same grape-seed oil to make this healthy and refreshing coleslaw.

Quick and healthy Purple cabbage coleslaw  

easy vegetarian recipes, egg free baking and healthy desserts.

Ingredients;

(serve 3)

  • 2 cups shredded red cabbage
  • 1 cup grated carrot
  • 1 small cucumber
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
  • Coriander leaves to garnish

Dressing;

  • 2 tbsp Grape-seed oil/Olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. Black pepper powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

easy vegetarian recipes, egg free baking and healthy desserts.

Method; Wash and shred red cabbage finely and grate carrots. Dice cucumber, onion into very thin slices. De-seed tomato and chop finely.

Combine all the prepped vegetables in a large salad bowl.

In another small bowl whisk together the ingredients fro dressing.
easy healthy vegetarian recipes

Pour the dressing over vegetables, sprinkle toasted sesame seeds and serve chilled.

Notes;

  1. Replace grape-seed oil with Olive oil or even sesame oil as dressing.
  2. Use toasted nuts or seeds to increase the health quotient of this recipe.
  3. Chill the coleslaw before serving for the crunchy bites.
  4. Use colored capsicum or bell pepper to add colurs and nutrition in the recipe.

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Baking | Indian Parathas Calzone Way – There is nothing better than being able to bring a smile on someones face http://litebite.in/baking-sweet-corn-calzones/ http://litebite.in/baking-sweet-corn-calzones/#comments Wed, 30 Jul 2014 07:08:22 +0000 http://litebite.in/?p=10722 There is nothing better than being able to bring a smile to someones face and make them happy. Yes, I did it again!
I have other commitments lined up for this week already and I may not be able to take up this project. Moreover I am not a professional photographer, I can ony style the food to some extent. And doing 60 dishes in such a short span of time is practically impossible.” I replied showing my helplessness to accept the said project to my friend 'P' on phone.

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Healthy calzones

There is nothing better than being able to bring a smile to someones face and make them happy. Yes, I did it again!
I have other commitments lined up for this week already and I may not be able to take up this project. Moreover I am not a professional photographer, I can only style the food to some extent. And doing 60 dishes in such a short span of time is practically impossible.” I replied showing my helplessness to accept the said project to my friend ‘P’ on phone.

You cannot say ‘no’ Sanjeeta, you are doing this project for me. This is a small family cook book for a friend of mine and we are not keen on perfect pictures, your photos will do well.” She replied.

Taking up a task which should sensibly take about 25-30  days and completing it in a few days time sounds daunting. And I will be doing every work from selecting props, placing food, arranging backdrops, styling food to clicking pictures all by myself “. I tried explaining my situation to her.

Well, these are times, when your heart wins out over the head. And I accepted her project with few more commitments in hand.

In a normal Ad photo shoot I style for about 6-7 dishes for the photographer while most of our time goes in co-coordinating and accepting the ideas of the client and the art directors.

But for this project I had no time to pre plan for shoots or organize any props or garnishes for the recipes. In fact I never had any clue as to what dishes are going to come that day, will it be curries, sweets, flat breads or something else.

Baking | Sweet Corn Calzones

13-14 dishes would arrive each day at 2 pm and I had just 4 hours in my hand to shoot the dishes.

Yes unlike any conventional studio photo shoots where lighting and every other things are pre set and you just need perfectly styled food to click.

In natural light photography you are at the mercy of Sun god. You need to change the angles and composition of food to be shot every few seconds depending upon the sun rays. And to my bad luck I had over cast skies and rains on all the 5 days of shoot.

I would set my table in my patio, grab whatever prop I could, garnish the dishes lightly when suddenly the skies will be overcast and I had to move inside to continue shooting in my small homemade studio.

Even with my article deadline for an Indian Daily “Deccan Chronicle” and a restaurant shoot planning coinciding with the shoot, I finished the Herculean task of styling and clicking all 60 dishes individually in the stipulated time.

Baking | Sweet Corn Calzones

Fortnightly article in an Indian Daily

I worked late in nights and was able to complete and submit my article on time.

Baking | Sweet Corn Calzones

Packing sweets and some gifts for blogger friends…

After effects of this strenuous 5 days non-stop, high-pressure photo shoot is taking a toll on my body. What with a severe backache, sore legs and running with temperature.

My body has given up but the spirits are still high…yes, I will be meeting many of my food blogger friends in a days time :)

I still have energy left to make some chocolates for my friends and pack a few gifts for them. And yes, a recipe to post for one another contest on IFBM.

A very humble Indian flat bread or stuffed Paratha which takes the fancy name of Calzone (folded Pizza) to please children at home. Thanks to the contest, this old recipe is finally kicked out from the folders.

Indian Paratha Calzone with Fresh Corn

Baking | Indian Parathas Calzone Way

Ingredients;

(serve 3)

  • 1/2 cup quick cooking Oats
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup yogurt
  • 1 tbsp. oil
  • 1 tsp. Baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • Water to knead hard dough

Vegetables stuffing;

  • Sweet corn
  • Capsicum
  • Spinach
  • Boiled potato
  • Onion
  • 2 tbsp. cottage cheese (Paneer)
  • 4 tbsp. chilli-tomato sauce
  • 2 tsp. oil

Baking | Sweet Corn Calzones

Method; Preheat oven to 200°C and grease a baking tray with oil

Grind Oats into fine powder and mix it with whole wheat flour in a large bowl. I kneaded both Oatmeal flour and plain white flour dough (in the pictures above) to make Calzones.

Add baking powder, salt, oil, half a cup of water and bring all ingredients together to form dough.

Add yogurt and a little water (if needed) to make a pliable dough.

Cover the dough with a damp cloth and let it rest for 10 minutes till the vegetables are prepared.

Finely chop onion, capsicum, spinach.

Heat oil in a pan, add chopped vegetables and sauté on high heat for 3-4 minutes. Take the pan off flame.

Baking | Sweet Corn Calzones

Divide dough into 4 large balls and roll out each into small rounds.

Spread a little chilli tomato sauce, place chopped and cooked vegetables and grated cottage cheese in one corner of the circle.

Flip the other end and close the Calzone. Press the corners with a fork to seal the Calzones.

Baking | Sweet Corn Calzones

Coat the Calzones with oil using a pastry brush or your hands. Cut a small slit on top of the Calzones to let the steam pass.

Place all the prepared Calzones on greased baking tray and bake for 15 minutes or till the crust is baron in colour.

Baking | Sweet Corn Calzones

This recipe is an entry to IFBM and Freedom Tree Baking contest

Notes;

  1. Do not over stuff Calzones.
  2. Add any sauce or Indian spice-mix to the vegetables stuffing for making Calzones or folded stuffed Parathas.

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