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Friday, June 23, 2017

Mango Chia Overnight Oats | Healthy Breakfast


Recipe of Mango Chia Overnight Oats :- Overnight Oats is like music to my ears. The popularity of these easy to make Overnight Oats are un-matachable, reason being many like incredibly easy fix for breakfast, simple to prepare the night before, power packed energy jar in no time to count a few. So if you have been trying to cut down time to prepare healthy breakfast, Overnight Oats is your answer. And the options are unlimited ! I now make 3 bottles at a one go for a quick rush free morning breakfast. Be creative and you can add any variety of your favorite toppings. 



Today's post is Mango Chia Overnight Oats recipe. The choice is endless with dry fruits, chopped nuts, flower seeds, maple syrup and so on. All the below recipes are made with Old fashioned Oats also called regular old oats. Don't try to settle down with the steel -cut oats as they when soaked with milk overnight turned out chewy. The thumb rule is to add fruits, nuts, crunchy toppings at the last minute so that the chopped fruits, nuts remains fresh. Where as previous night you can add the seeds, spices along with yogurt and milk with old fashioned oats. After my workout session a glass of chilled Banana Oats Smoothie , Mango Lassi or Kiwi- Cucumber Juice along with few walnuts becomes my mid-time snack. I only use Quaker's old fashioned oats as the taste is really good.

Ingredients: 
1/2 cup Old fashioned oats {NOT THE QUICK OATS}
3/4 cup Almond milk
1 tbsp Honey
1/2 cup diced Mango
1 tsp Chia seeds
1 tsp Honey

Method:
In a bowl mix together chia, oats seeds, honey and milk and pour in a mason jar. Keep in mind that next day we will be filling the diced mangoes on top of this overnight soaked oats, so make sure to leave 2 inches of room at the top of mason jar. Close the lid and refrigerate overnight.

Next morning just pop it out from the refrigerator, add diced mangoes. Top with desired optional toppings. 

read more.. "Mango Chia Overnight Oats | Healthy Breakfast"

Monday, June 19, 2017

Summer Special Falsa or Phalsa Juice | How To Make Falsey Juice


Botanical name of Falsey / Phalsa is Grewia Asiatica, a tiny looking purple fruit which is available during peak summer months (May- June). This delicate fruit, Phalsa, is a native of India and other sub-continent. During summers in North when heat wave is at it's peak, Falsey's consumption gives cooling effect. In most homes Falsa is eaten raw with a sprinkle of black pepper and salt. I still remember during our way back from school to home, a street vendor would be there at a corner selling huge batch of Falsey placed on a small wet jute, to keep it cool and from drying. It came with a special kind of Chat Masala which was a must to have with Falsa. And within few hours the huge batch of Falsa would be sold out in no time. Falsey is sweet with a hint of tanginess and is so refreshing that it vanishes as soon as it hits the market during summer. 


The health benefits are plenty ! Rich in Potassium, Calcium, Vitamin C, low on Sodium and many more health benefits. It is the nature of Falsey that it's shelf life is short so it can not be transported to other cities, hence only in Northern region the small time street vendors are often seen selling Phalsa. Sadly they are rarely sighted these days selling these beautiful purple gems. Lack of knowledge of conservation and it's benefits could also be another reason of it's disappearance. 

If you are looking for similar summer juices then click on the below recipes:-



Ingredients:
1 1/2 cup Falsey / Phalsa
1/4 cup Sugar
2 tsp Chat Masala powder or Black Salt
1/2 cup Chilled water + 1 cup for making sugar syrup
1/2 cup crushed Ice

Method:
Wash the fruit thoroughly in water and leave it for 15 minutes. Mix sugar and water to make sugar syrup. Boil water for 5 minutes and turn off the heat. Soak the cleaned falsa in sugar syrup and let it sit for 5 minutes. Add chilled water and pass it through a strainer, rub the pulp through the strainer to get rid of seeds. Pour into glasses over ice and serve them with mint leaves (optional). Generally the fruit seller give a special masala with it which is khatta-meetha. I love adding it to the juice as it brings out the best taste.


read more.. "Summer Special Falsa or Phalsa Juice | How To Make Falsey Juice"

Friday, April 21, 2017

Quaker Feed A Child - Flags Off Feeding Drive in Chennai with Chef Vikas Khanna


I was invited by Quaker India, to be a part of Quaker Feed A Child campaign in Chennai this week. Quaker Feed A Child is an initiative that aims to bring a fistful of nutrition to lakhs of underprivileged children. To mark the launch, Quaker India along with celebrity Chef and Nutrition Brand Ambassador of PepsiCo Vikas Khanna was present for the cause. Popular actresses Shriya Saran and Meenakshi Dixit also wholeheartedly joined to share a meal with the children to mark the occasion.

 Completely ignoring the scorching heat children came over happily wearing  green caps and welcomed New York based Michelin starred celebrity chef Vikas Khanna, noted actresses Shirya Saran and Meenakshi Dikshit. 
Deepika Warrier, Vice President - Nutrition Category PepsiCo India, says "According to recent reports nearly 3,000 children die daily in India due to poor diet related cases and hunger."
To combat this problem Quaker Feed A Child has committed to serve 200,000  under privileged children in India through various initiatives like Cook With Smile, Dine With Smile, Million Dollar through Smile Foundation. 

Giving back to the society was the essence of the event, actress Shriya Saran recalls how her trips to a blind school in Delhi in her school days had a marking impression that later she opened  a spa for visually challenged people in Mumbai. She said "I pledge my support to the Quaker Feed A Child initiative and applaud Quaker India and Smile Foundation for their efforts to bring smiles to the faces of hundreds of children in Tamilnadu."



In the same line PepsiCo's Nutrition Ambassador , Vikas Khanna said "The problem of hunger and malnutrition in India cannot be solved in a day and certainly can't be achievable by one person or entity, so if each of us makes small effort to help even one child, then only we can take a big leap towards ensuring no child sleeps without food."

Echoing the same sentiments actress Meenakshi Dixit said "Even after getting success in my film career, I was not getting inner peace. So when Smile Foundation approached me for supporting this initiative by Quaker, I grabbed the opportunity. I whole heartedly pledge my support to Quaker Feed A Child and urge everyone to feed one child everyday."


Later all the kids got a cap signed by none other than the handsome, humble chef -Vikas with a smile. And when the children enjoyed a fulfilling meal, this was the biggest take away. 

I was feeling privileged to be a part of this wonderful event. Also meeting maestro Vikas Khanna was itself a dream come true. Leaving you with some memorable pictures of Quaker Feed A Child event. 






read more.. "Quaker Feed A Child - Flags Off Feeding Drive in Chennai with Chef Vikas Khanna"

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Jhuri Aloo Bhaja Bengali Style | Julienne Potato Fries


Jhir-Jhirey-Aloo-Bhaja is a traditional Bengali recipe where finely grated potato sticks are fried till crispy and crunchy. A favorite for all ages as the simplicity of the recipe appeals to all. Jhuri Aloo Bhaja as the name suggests is crispy fried potato julienne, one of a staple side dish at any Bengali home, best accompaniment for Dal-Rice. If you are looking for many such Bhaja / Bhajis that are regular at Bengali's kitchen do check out 





Jhir-Jhirey Aloo Bhaja is a very simple recipe which are super addictive when tossed with few curry leaves and fried peanuts. Very little seasoning is needed as Chat masala, salt and red chili powder does the trick. These munchies are great for tea time snack also.

Ingredients:

3 large Potatoes
handful of Peanuts (optional)
2 sprigs of Curry leaves
1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
1/4 Chat masala
1/4 tsp Red chili powder
A pinch of black salt
Salt
Oil for deep frying

Method:

Wash and peel the potatoes. Cut potatoes razor thin sticks with a sharp knife or you can use Mandoline (*see the video for reference below). 


video

Transfer the thinly grated potato sticks on a sieve and run under tap water. Now take a bowl full of chilled water, rinse the potato in cold water to remove the surface starch.

Change the water again with chilled water and dip the grated potato sticks for half an hour. Heat oil in a deep fried pan. Fry peanuts in hot oil and keep aside. Now fry the curry leaves, drain and keep aside. Squeeze out as much water as possible with your hands and keep aside in plate. And divide the razor thin potato sticks into 5-6 batches as we can not crowd the pan /kadhai or else you will end up a huge lump of potato sticks. Add a pinch of turmeric and mix with a fork Do not add salt at this stage.


video

Fry one batch at a time and keep stirring as it will ensure even cooking. Fry till they turn crispy, sprinkle salt. Drain on an absorbent tissue. Repeat till all the batches are done. Sprinkle red chili powder, chat masala, fried peanuts and curry leaves. Crispy and super crunchy Jhuri Aloo Bhaja is ready to serve. 

read more.. "Jhuri Aloo Bhaja Bengali Style | Julienne Potato Fries"

Monday, March 27, 2017

PepsiCo expands Nutrition Portfolio | Quaker Nutri Foods & Tropicana Essentials


What comes in your mind when you think of having something quick for breakfast cereals category? Perhaps Oats or Conrflaxes, right? World's renowned oats brand from Pepsico has launched Quaker Nutri Food ready to cook packet of goodness and Tropicana Essentials has introduced Tropicana Essentials Fruit & Veggies on 22nd of March 2017 at Chennai. When we talk about Quaker, it is a known fact that it is 130 years old and world leader in the oatmeal segment.


Commenting about the expansion, Deepika Warrier, Vice President, Nutrition Category - PepsiCo India said -" With the launch of Quaker Nutri Foods and Tropicana Essentials, we are moving one step ahead to become every consumer's journey towards a healthier lifestyle. She also said that they had got into global mapping of breakfast patterns to understand the micro and macro nutrients."




Quaker Nutri Foods
Keeping South Indian consumers taste bud in mind and of course the rushed lifestyles of office goers, there is a need for healthy options. Tamil Nadu and Kerala are the main key growth market for them. So PepsiCo India is certain that income should not be the barrier to have a proper balanced meal. The new range includes Quaker Nutri Upma and Quaker Nutri Khichdi, Quaker Nutri Idli and Quaker Nutri Dosa, with the goodness of up to 40% -56% Quaker oats to make mornings healthy. Within a week I found the newly launched packets in various departmental stores, More, Spencer to name a few. Since the target is economic class, the prices are INR.40 for 40 gms to start with. All the new varieties will be available in 40g and 150g packs across all stores.
I personally tried Quakers Nutri Dosa and Quaker Nutri Umpa, both tasted good.


Tropicana Essentials
Those who are not familiar with Tropicana, it's world's number one packaged juice brand! On 22nd March 2017, the Tropicana essentials has introduced 'Fruit & Veggies, with Vitamin A and Vitamin C present in fruits and vegetables to the people of Tamil Nadu. So now whole family can enjoy the delicious range of functional juices that have been created skillfully to combat the deficiencies in Indian urban diets and lifestyle. WHO recommends consuming 5 servings of fruits and veggies in a day, a study by ICRIER found that  Indians consume only 3.5 servings. So the picture is younger generation and students were found to consume much less what is being prescribed. Every packet of 200 ml pack of Tropicana Essentials- Fruit & Veggie delivers the goodness of juice of one serve of fruit and veggies each. April 2017 will see the launch of another juice product in the Tropicana essentials category.

read more.. "PepsiCo expands Nutrition Portfolio | Quaker Nutri Foods & Tropicana Essentials"

Monday, March 20, 2017

Royal Oreo Brownie Recipe



Friends, am I so thrilled to share with you one of the most delicious and chewy dessert of all times. Does the name tempts you that is Royal Oreo Brownie! What not to love about it? I call it Royal because it's got Oreo when mixed with brownie batter is a sure winner. I did a guest post on Lubna's blog during last Christmas when she was hosting Christmas special baked goodies. You could check my post at Yummy Food by Lubna Karim. I guarantee you that the taste of this brownie drowned with coffee would truly make this phrase come alive that “ Way to heart is through the stomach”. Not to mention the emotions of the movie would ensure that you finish up this meal in no time. So please try this exercise and I guarantee that both of you would have a time of your lives. 
Do check out my earlier brownie recipe which is my most searched recipe on my blog 'Nutty Dark Chocolate Brownie'

Ingredients:

1 cup plain Flour plus extra for dusting
140 gms Caster Sugar
3 tbsp Cocoa powder
1/2 tsp Baking powder
1 cup melted Butter (unsalted)
100 gms Dark Chocolate, grated or finally chopped
2 Eggs, beaten
1 tsp Vanilla extract
150 pack of Oreo cookies, broken into pieces
Marshmallows (optional)


Method:

Preheat the oven to 160 Degree Celsius, grease a 9 inch square baking tin and line with baking paper with extra hanging over the sides. Sift together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and make a well in the center.



Melt the butter in a pan over a medium heat. When the butter has melted, remove form heat and add grated chocolate. Leave to stand for few a minutes or until the chocolate melts and then stir together. Whisk the eggs one at a time and pour it in the well of dry ingredients. Combine well and then add broken Oreo cookies again stir until fully combined. Evenly spread batter in the pan and bake for 40 minutes. Just before 5 minutes of finishing time I did add some marshmallows but you can totally omit this step. Let the brownies cool in the pan for an hour or two. Pull the brownies out with the extended baking paper, cut them into squares and serve.



read more.. "Royal Oreo Brownie Recipe"

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Nutella Swirled Moist Banana Bread


Make Nutella Swirled Banana bread whenever you have over ripe bananas sitting at home. The moist bread tastes delicious as the addition of nutella adds more flavour. Don't believe me? Then simple make and watch it go vanish in no time. This Nutella Swirled Mosit Banana bread is great method to turn over ripe bananas into a hero ! Do try this moist and tender loaf, bursting with banana flavour and irresistible nutella.

You can also check out my Eggless Whole Wheat Banana Bread or even Banana Walnut Bread. Both the recipes have been appreciated by my readers who have tried it on their own.

 I remember that whenever I watched British sitcoms, during tea time such type of cakes were surely served and that ensured that the conversation went on along with the munching of cakes and sipping tea. Another advantage is that all the ingredients are easily available at home and no need to go to high end stores to purchase them. 

Ingredients:
3 Ripe Bananas, mashed
1 cup Nutella
1 1/4 cups Flour
1/2 cup Whole Wheat flour
2 eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup Sugar
1 cup Butter (unsalted) {Room temperature}
1 tsp Baking powder
1/2 tsp Baking soda
Pinch of Salt

Method

Pre-heat oven to 180 Degree Celsius and lightly grease and flour a 9 * 5 inch loaf pan. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. 

 In a bowl peel and mash the bananas using a fork and keep aside. In a mixing bowl melt the butter in a microwave for few seconds and let it cool slightly. Add sugar into it and beat until light in color. Add one egg at a time and beat with sugar batter. Fold in the mashed bananas until just combined.


 Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix till they are uniformly blended {Do Not Over beat}. Heat the nutella in a microwave for about 10-20 seconds to soften it. Drizzle 1/2 of nutella over the banana batter. Pour batter even into the pan and pour remaining nutella and make a thick swirl with a skewer throughout the loaf.



Place the baking pan on a baking sheet and bake for 50 minutes or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the pan to cool for 20 minutes and then transfer it to a wire rack. 
read more.. "Nutella Swirled Moist Banana Bread"

Friday, January 27, 2017

Phool Makhane Ki Kheer | LotusSeeds Or Foxnuts Recipe


Makhane ki kheer or Phool Makhane ki kheer is a delicious dessert that is often being made at my home during festivals. Makhana is a great traditional substitute of popcorns. Lotus seeds are very light and white in color. These healthy seeds when roasted with ghee and a pinch of salt, tastes awesome during winters.
Makhana or Phool Makhane Ki Kheer is delectable porridge like desse  with milk and dry fruits. This kheer was a must during Puja days in our childhood as Prasad to God. Before adding makhane to the milk we fry these foxnuts in ghee for better flavour and crunchiness. I have crushed some makhanas in the grinder to add in the milk, this gives very nice thickness and texture to the kheer. Another notable addition is the presence of Chironji which add a nice crunch to the kheer.

So learn how to make Phool Makhane Ki Kheer here by following some simple steps. Serve it warm or cold as your prefer. Garnish Makhane ki Kheer with chopped almonds, Pistachios, fried cashews and few strands of kesar.

Ingredients:
1 cup Phool Makhana (Puffed Lotus Seeds)
1 Ltr Full fat Milk
1/4 Sugar
1 tbsp Chironji
5-6 Pistachios
4-5 Almonds, sliced
6-7 Cashews
Few strands of Saffron (soaked in 1 tsp of warm milk)
2 tbsp Ghee

Method:
In a pan add 1 tbsp ghee and roast cashews, chironji and fry till lightly brown. Keep aside. In the same pan add remaining ghee and roast makhanas on low flame for next 5-6 minutes by stirring continuously until they become light brown and look crispy. Set aside to cool. And later crush 1/2 cup  puffed roasted nut which we are gong to add later while boiling milk for thickening porridge. Keep remaining roasted puffed nuts to add them whole. 

In another pan add milk and bring it to a boil. Keep stirring in between and once the milk is reduced to half, add powdered makhanas and whole makhana. Stir occasionally so that the kheer doesn't stick to the pan. Add sugar, add fried dry fruits and cook on low flame for 10-15 minutes. Add the saffron milk now and if you find the kheer very thick then add some hot milk and check the consistency. Turn off the stove. Garnish with sliced almonds, pistachios and silver varak(optional). Serve it warm or chilled. Enjoy !

read more.. "Phool Makhane Ki Kheer | LotusSeeds Or Foxnuts Recipe"

Friday, January 20, 2017

Methi Poori | How To Make Methi Poori | Fenugreek Recipes

Today's recipe is Methi Poori, a delicious, aromatic deep fried Indian flatbread. Great way to blend green leafy veggies into whole wheat flour with some spices, which in turn into nice earthy flavour. These pooris are loved by kids and a good option for school snack. Methi is also known as Feenugreek leaves which have a unique taste and flavour. 
We had our own kitchen garden in good old days and never had to buy methi leaves. The sight of dew drops on leaves, the fragrance of fresh methi while plucking from our kitchen garden is beyond words. Sigh !

Coming back to hero of the day -Methi Poori can can serve with Spicy Baby Potatoes Curry / Sukhe Aloo /  Kala Chana Gravy. Or this can be simply served with raita. 

Ingredients:
For Dough-
1.5 cup Whole wheat flour
2 tbsp All purpose flour
1 tbsp Carom Seeds (ajwain)
2 tsp Curd
1/2 tsp Red chilli powder
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
3 tsp Oil to knead the dough
Water required to make the dough
Oil for deep frying the pooris

Method:
Rinse the methi in water thoroughly to get rid of the soil particles. Chop the leaves evenly. In a wide bowl add chopped methi leaves, combine with whole wheat and all purpose flour, curd, ajwain, salt, turmeric, red chili powder. Pour 3 tsp oil in the middle of dry mixture and rub the flour using your hands without water at this stage. The curd in it along with oil will help in binding the dough, now add water little by little to make a soft dough. Cover the dough with a moist cloth and leave it to rest for 20 minutes. 

Make equal balls of the dough (equal sized) and roll out thin and small circles. Similarly shape all the dough same manner.

 Heat oil in kadhai to deep fry the pooris. Ensure the oil is very hot before you start or else you won't get puffed pooris. Slide one poori at a time in hot oil, after a second press it with  slotted ladle. This will make poori puff in no time. Once it starts floating, turn the poori and fry it on a medium flame. Serve hot.


read more.. "Methi Poori | How To Make Methi Poori | Fenugreek Recipes"

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Kurkurey Bhindi Fry | Indian Okra Recipe


Crispy, crunchy thin slices of fried okra still remains my personal choice when served with Dal-Bhaat. Nothing fancy about it, very simple yet quick and easy stir fry to accompany Rice- Dal. You can cut them in lengthwise or even round thin shape. Basically okra are thinly cut and marinated with different dry spices and besan. Later deep fried into hot oil till golden.

Home grown, handpicked tender ladies finger is my favorite. It has an advantage of coming handy when one is pressed for time as it gets cooked in a jiffy. Do try other Okra Recipes like Crispy Okra With Yogurt, Pyaaji Bhindi  or Stuffed Bhindi Fry (Bengali Style)

Ingredients:
250 gms Okra / Bhindi
1/4 cup Besan / Gram Flour
2 tbsp Cornflour
A pinch of Ajwain
Red chili powder
Amchoor powder
Chat masala
Turmeric
2 tsp oil
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

Method:
Wash and dry the okra, trim head and tail of it. Cut them into thin round, cutting them thin ensures that not only it gets cooked faster but very crunchy too. In a mixing bowl put all spices {EXCEPT chat masala} and toss the cut okra pieces well with your clean hand or with a fork. Toss it again with besan, cornflour and 2 tsp oil. Cover and keep aside for 15 minutes. 

Heat a pan with oil for deep frying the coated okras, when oil is hot enough, deep fry marinated okra in batches. Deep fry till golden brown and crisp. Drain out from oil and place them on a kitchen tissue. Do fry them in batches so that you don't cluster the pan. Sprinkle chat masala over the crispy bhindi. Serve them hot and crisp as a side dish with dal-chawal or just like that. 


Tips:

  • Always choose young and tender bhindis for this particular recipe as it gives crisper result.
  • Serve the crispy fried bhindis immediately to enjoy the crunchiness. 
  • No need to add extra water to make the batter as moisture and slimy nater of bhindi works as a glue.

read more.. "Kurkurey Bhindi Fry | Indian Okra Recipe"

Friday, July 22, 2016

How To Make Bengali Khichuri | Bengali Bhog er Khichuri Recipe



Khichuri Bhog is a much revered term in a Bengali household as it is an  offering made to God during Durga Puja, Lakshmi Puja, Kali Pujo, Swarasti Puja to name a few. Bhog Khichuri is prepared other than festival times too. Same khichuri when prepared on other days tastes different when served with a variety of accompaniments. The mere mention of Khichuri Bhog instantly conjures up the distinct flavour of Gobindo Bhog Chal. Which brings out the  true essence of Khichuri. Bengal's very own premium variety of rice which is aromatic and full of flavours.

A rainy day and a steaming plate of Khichuri along with Ilish Mach Bhaja is something to die for. One can experiment a whole lot of accompaniments besides Chutney and Papad. Being a one pot meal facilitates preparation time and can be cooked with or without vegetables.


Ingedients:

½ cup Gobindo bhog Chal (If not available then small grain variety like jeera rice will do but NOTHING LIKE GOBINDO BHOG CHAL)
½ cup Moong Dal
2 slit Green chilies
2 tsp Turmeric powder
1 tsp Jeera powder
5-6 Flat  Beans , cut into half
 8-10 Beans, cut into an inch
1 medium size Carrot, diced
1/4 cup Green peas
1 Potato, diced into 4 pieces
5-6 medium size florets Cauliflower
1 big Tomato, cut into four halves
Bengali Garam masala (Cinnamon, cardamom and cloves roughly crushed)
Around 4 cups of Water

For Tempering we Need:
2 tbsp Ghee
2 Tej patta
2 whole red chili
1 inch grated Ginger
1 tsp Panch Phoron
Salt to taste


Method:
Wash and soak  rice.  Dry Roast yellow moong dal till it leaves nice nutty aroma. The color of roasting dal should be light in color, over roasting may bring out different taste. Take a heavy kadhai, boil the roastedd al along with 2 cups of water, salt and turmeric. Allow the dal to cook partially. Now add rice with another 2 cups of water, stir it well. Let it come to boil, gradually add the vegetables, crushed garam masala, cumin powder, salt to taste. Simmer for 8-10 minutes to get the desired consistency. And the vegetables should be cooked till tender. Remember khichuri tends to get dry so the consistency should be monitored (smoothly porable). Neither too thick nor too runny. By this time, rice-dal and vegetables will be cooked. Add 1 tsp of sugar and mix thoroughly.


For seasoning heat ghee in a frying pan, add tej patta, red whole chili, panch phoron, grated ginger in this sequence. Pour it over the piping hot khichuri and enjoy it with phulkopir pakora, raita, aachar and papad.

read more.. "How To Make Bengali Khichuri | Bengali Bhog er Khichuri Recipe"