Fro Yo Love!

It’s been 18 years and i am still hoping to shed off the extra kilos from my body! My weight loss pattern has been a yo yo one. There have been times when I’ve lost 15 Kgs over 3 months and then, I’ve not even lost an ounce.

Over the time, I’ve realized that every individual is different and so is his/her body pattern. What works for you may not work for me and vice versa. It is important to keep trying. It is more important to never ever give up! Some people might encourage but mostly, you will come across people who will look down upon you. Ignore all and keep walking.

And to keep myself going, i need to treat myself once in a week. Trust me guys, whether you are on a diet or no diet, a tad bit of indulgence is essential. So, i made some delicious Chocolate Banana Frozen Yogurt. And this recipe is a healthy one and packed full goodness.

The below recipe will serve 4 portions.

  • Bananas – 2 (sliced and frozen)
  • Honey – 3 Tbsp
  • Yogurt – 3 Tbsp
  • Vanilla Extract – 2 Tsp
  • Cocoa Powder – 1 Tbsp

The ingredients are not very many but they are just the right ones.

  1. Put all the ingredients in a food processor and blend it all for 3-4 mins.
  2. Pour it in an airtight container and freeze for about 6 hours. Preferably, overnight… That way, you need not wait for the froyo to set.
  3. I garnished my portion with some walnut caramel crumble but you can enjoy it just like that. I somehow feel that one can never go wrong with Bananas, Chocolate and Walnuts.. it is after all, a classic combination.

Can this recipe get any simpler or what!

As quoted by someone “All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.” And if it is your favorite fruit whipped up with some yogurt, it wouldn’t hurt at all.

Tea and Cookies anyone?

Ajwain a.k.a. Bishops Weed or Carom Seeds is a very popular spice and is used widely in daily cooking. It is known world over for its benefits and soothing effects to our body.

These tiny granules smell like thyme because it contains Thymol, an essential oil present in Carom Seeds. However, the taste is sharp and pungent. A touch of Carom Seed in any dish and the flavour is enhanced. And by touch i mean touch, really! An ounce extra and the taste will change completely.

I usually add Carom Seeds in my morning paranthas (fried flat bread) or to cookies. I love my afternoon tea and i always need something to go with it. A bite or two curbs my hunger pangs and keeps me going. What better option than Carom Seed Cookies.

 

Here’s my recipe.

  • All Purpose Flour (sifted) – 2 Cups
  • Clarified Butter – ½ Cup (you may even use regular unsalted butter, about 100 gms)
  • Confectioners Sugar – 1.5 Tbsp
  • Carom seeds – 1 Tsp and little extra to sprinkle on top
  • Salt – 1/2 Tsp
  • Baking Powder – 1/2 Tsp
  • Milk – 50 ml or as required to form the cookie dough
  1. Take a large bowl. Add sifted flour and baking powder, confectioners sugar, carom seeds and salt. Mix the dry ingredients thoroughly so the Carom seeds are well distributed.
  2. Tip in the Clarified Butter and mix well using your fingers. At this points, the mixture should resemble crumbly and just about to come together.
  3. Add 2-3 tbsp milk at a time and mix well. If the dough seems dry, then add 1-2 tbsp milk and mix. Knead with light hands just until the dough comes together. Cover the dough and keep it aside for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven at 180 degree Celsius – do this when you start the cookie cutting process.
  5. Sprinkle some dry all purpose flour on the counter top or on the surface you wish to roll the dough on. Place the dough on top and roll out until ½ cm thick. Just before finishing the rolling process, sprinkle few carom seeds on top and give it a light roll so as to stick the seeds to the cookie top.
  6. Cut the cookies using a a cookie cutter or even a glass.. i like a variety of shapes and so i used my flower shape cookie cutter.
  7. Place the cut out cookies on a greased and dusted baking tray. Ensure that they are placed at a distance.
  8. Place the cookie tray in oven (in the middle rack) and bake for about 12 – 15 mins until golden brown. Since, all ovens our different, temperature and timing may vary. To keep your cookies from burning, keep an eye on your oven at intervals.
  9. Once baked, open the oven door and let your cookies cool completely. Take them out of the oven and store in an airtight container.

I know it is not time for my afternoon tea. But still, I’m off to munch on my cookies.. see ya!

Breakfast Stories

Breakfast! My favorite meal – and you can be so creative. Breakfast is the time I splurge with calories, then I spend the rest of the day thinking how to get them off! Whether you friends and family around, a quiet little brunch for two, or an even quieter little brunch just for yourself, breakfast can set the mood and pace for the whole day.

My husband is picky when it comes to food and I have to decide the menu a day in advance giving me time to prepare for it. The husband is fond of heavy breakfast; so we have all kinds of Paranthas, Sandwiches and Poha cooking throughout the week. But what next… where is the change? What do I cook that is different? Something I haven’t made in a long time. And voila! Why not make Vegetable Uthappam with Green Garlic Chutney! Uthappam, a very popular South Indian dish is a pancake lookalike but in a savory form and is made with rice. A humble breakfast, Uthappam is filling and super delicious.

I’ll share my recipe with you, it is simple and easy to do.

To make the Uthappam Batter, you will need.

  • ½ cup Urad Dal (split black lentils)
  • 1 Tbsp Fenugreek Seeds (Methi)
  • 1 cup Raw Rice
  • 1 cup par-boiled rice
  • 2 Tbsp thick beaten rice (if available)
  1. Combine the Urad Dal and Fenugreek Seeds in a deep bowl, soak it in enough water for 4 hours.
  2. Combine the Raw Rice, Par Boiled Rice and thick Rice Flakes in a deep bowl, soak it in enough water for 4 hours.
  3. Drain the Urad Dal and Fenugreek Seeds and blend in a mixer to a smooth paste using approx. 1 cup of water. Transfer the mixture into a deep bowl and keep aside.
  4. Drain the rice, parboiled rice and thick rice flakes blend in a mixer to a smooth
    paste using approx. 1 cup of water. Transfer the mixture into the same bowl (as
    the Urad Dal mixture), add salt as per taste and mix well.
  5. Cover and allow the batter to ferment in a warm place for 10 – 12 hours.
  6. Store in an airtight container and refrigerate. Use as required. However, ensure that you use the batter within 3-4 days, else it will turn sour.
  7. With this batter, you can make a variety of Uthappams, Dosas and Idlis.

If you do not want to go through the tedious process of making the batter on your own, you may want to buy the fresh batter at any grocery store. You could also buy any Ready To Eat, dosa/idli mix. It’s the same thing.

To make 4 medium sized Vegetable Uthappam, you will need.

  • 2 cups of the Uthappam Batter 
  • 1 Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 Tomato, finely chopped
  • ½ Capsicum, finely chopped
  • 2-3 Green Chillies, finely chopped
  • Fresh Coriander, finely chopped
  • Oil for cooking
  1. Heat the tava/griddle/flat bottom pan. Lower the heat and sprinkle some water to
    bring down the temperature.
  2. Remove from heat and pour a ladle or two of the batter, depending on how big you want your Uthappams to be. Spread to about 5”/6” circle and the thickness should be little less than that of a pancake.
  3. Quickly sprinkle the finely chopped veggies and fresh coriander. This is optional and as per taste – you can use any veggies of your choice, just ensure it is very
    finely chopped.
  4. Add about a tsp of oil/butter on top and a little around the sides for crispy edge.
    Let the Uthappam cook for about 3-4 mins on each side (on low heat).
  5. Remove from heat and serve hot with ketchup/coconut chutney/onion
    chutney/coriander chutney/garlic chutney/idli podi.

 

 

If you like the recipe and want me to post a blog on various types of chutneys/accompaniments, please do let me know. I’ll be more than happy to share my recipes and cooking experiences with you. 

After all, food connects us. It brings families and friends together, and makes us happy. It can be our comfort and also our worst enemy (ask me). Food is a necessity. And for that reason, it will continue to be a topic of conversation for generations to come.