Sunday, November 5, 2017

Chocolate Paan Bites

Chocolate Paan Bites

Desiccated coconut - ½ cup
Ccashewnuts and almonds (chopped) – 2 tbsp
Long betel nut strands (lacha supari) – 1 tbsp
Fennel seeds (saunf) or mouth freshener (any variety) - 2 tsp
Kolkata Paan finely chopped - 2
Gulkand (or as needed) - 2 tbsp
Dark chocolate - 150 gm (add more if desired)

Mix all the ingredients except chocolate
Freeze for a couple of hours
Make balls or any desired shape           
Melt dark chocolate
Coat the paan bites with the melted chocolate
Freeze for a couple of hours
Store in refrigerator

Health Benefits of Betel Leaf
Calcium rich
Contains Vitamins A, C, B1, B2 and B3
Improves appetite
Improves digestion
Reduces acidity
Has a component that reduces blood sugar
Said to increase metabolism
Helps in weight loss
Mouth freshener
Good for oral health

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Diwali Crackers

Diwali Crackers

Whole wheat flour – 1 cup
Kasoori methi (dried methi leaves) – ¼ cup (can add more
Ajwain – ¼ tsp
Oil + ghee – ¼ cup
Water – ¼ cup (vary according to consistency of dough)

Mix all the dry ingredients
Add oil + ghee to it and rub to form breadcrumb consistency
Knead it into a stiff dough using water as required
Cover the dough and let it rest for about 20 mins
Knead it again and divide it into 3 equal portions
Roll out each portion to form a roti and cut into desired shapes using a cookie cutter
Preheat oven to 160 degrees C
Bake for 15 mins or so till it turns crisp
Let it cool and store in an airtight container
Serve with a steaming cup of tea or coffee
Keep an eye on the crackers to prevent burning  

Health Benefits of Fenugreek Leaves
Helps to treat gastric problems and other intestinal issues
Used for curing dysentery and diarrhea
In powdered form, the leaves are used for treating Gastro-Intestinal issues, allergies or congestion of the upper respiratory zone
Helps to lower atherosclerosis
Reduces LDL and triglycerides while increasing HDL levels
Controls glucose metabolism. Also helps in preventing and treating of Type 2 diabetes
Reduces cellular insulin resistance
Reduces blemishes on skin
Its paste helps to give long, lustrous hair

Health Benefits of Wholewheat Flour
Rich in vitamins B1, B2, B3, E
Rich in folic acid, calcium, phosphorus, zinc, copper, iron
Rich in fibre, helps to lower risk of type 2 diabetes
Fibre also helps in weight loss
Helps women to avoid gallstones


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Stir fried Soba Noodles and Vegetables topped with dried Nori and Miso Chicken

Stir-fried Soba Noodles and Vegetables topped with dried Nori

Soba noodles is traditionally made using buckwheat flour. Buckwheat flour is locally referred to as kuttu ka atta. This makes it perfect for those on a gluten-free diet. But here you will find them made from buckwheat and wheat flour. So those who want to go gluten-free, please check the ingredients on the pack. But nevertheless it is a healthy option to the regular refined flour noodles packed with the goodness of buckwheat. 
So how does buckwheat score over wheat or rice noodles? Soba contains all eight essential amino acids. The amino acid, Thiamine, missing from white rice, is present in soba. Eating thiamine (vitamin B1) helps to prevent beriberi. Buckwheat also contains lysine, an amino acid which is lacking in wheat flour.
Besides the veggies, there are other two healthy ingredients - Miso paste and dried Nori. Read on for the recipe and the health benefits of these super healthy ingredients....


Soba noodles (cooked) – 1 cup
Broccoli, Mushroom, spring onions – ½ cup each
Garlic (minced) – 1 tbsp
Ginger (grated) – 1 tbsp
Miso paste – 1 tbsp
Pepper sauce - 1 tbsp
Spicy Black Bean paste - 1 tbsp
Soy sauce – 1 tsp
Oyster sauce – 1 tsp
Sriracha – 1 tsp
Black pepper powder – 1 tsp
Cayenne pepper/Red chili flakes (for topping) – according to taste
Dried nori – 1 tbsp
Olive oil – 1 tbsp
Stir fry the vegetables separately in olive oil
Add the sauces and vegetables
Add the noodles and mix slowly
Top with nori
Add chili flakes for a dash of extra spice

Miso Chicken

Chicken breasts – 4 to 5 medium pieces
Miso paste – 1 tbsp
Olive oil – 1 tsp
Sesame oil – 1 tsp
Soy sauce – 1 tsp
Sriracha – 1 tsp
Salt – according to taste
Mix all the ingredients of the marinade
Marinate the chicken pieces in this mixture for 1 or 2 hours
Coat the chicken pieces with sesame seeds
Bake at 180 degrees C for 15 mins
Turn them over and bake again for 10 to 15 mins till crisp on the outside

Note: The quantity of spices and sauces can be altered according to your taste in both the recipes

Health Benefits of Soba
Good protein content
Contains omega-3 fats
Lowers blood glucose levels
Lowers blood pressure
Lowers cholesterol
Rich in antioxidants

Health Benefits of Nori
Contains significant amounts of vitamin B12.. best source for strict vegetarians
Significant dietary source of iodine
Rich source of unsaturated fatty acids
Loaded with zinc, copper, and selenium
Rich source of free and bound amino acids

Note: Nori has high sodium levels

Health Benefits of Miso
Rich in antioxidants – manganese, zinc and copper
Rich in Vitamin K
Rich in phytonutrients
Provides cardiovascular benefits
Provides probiotics (good or helpful bacteria thaty help keep your gut healthy) 
Helps improve digestion
Has positive effect on blood pressure
Has anti-cancer effects

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Healthy Chocolate Lava Cake

Healthy Chocolate Lava Cake

How about a little healthy indulgence? I decided to try a healthy version of lava cake. I replaced all-purpose flour with wholewheat flour and butter with oil. And the result was a scrumptious, gooey cake. This is also an easy way out for people who do not have the time or the patience for icing the cake. So let's get on with it...

Wholewheat flour - 3/4 cup
Jaggery powder - 1/2 cup
Cocoa powder - 1/4 cup
Baking soda - 1/2 tsp
Milk - 1/2 cup (add more if required)
Vinegar - 1 tsp
(You can use buttermilk instead of vinegar+milk)
Oil - 1/4 cup
Salt - 1/4 tsp

Sieve the dry ingredients
Add vinegar to milk and let it stand for a minute
Add oil to it
Add liquid ingredients to dry mix and mix with a spatula till the batter is smooth
Do not over beat
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C
Bake for 15 to 20 mins or so till done 

Monday, October 2, 2017

Energy Bites

Energy Bites
This is the perfect way to enjoy the goodness of sesame seeds, black raisins and dates. Also, you can pamper your sweet tooth without feeling too guilty

White sesame (Til) – ½ cup
Black raisins – ¼ cup
Dates (deseeded) – ¼ cup
Cocoa powder – 2 tbsp (vary according to taste)

Blend all the ingredients in a mixer till you get a mass
Shape into rounds or squares

Store in an airtight container

Health Benefits

Sesame seeds
Reduces hypertension
Prevents diabetes and regulates insulin and glucose levels
Builds strong bones
Increase heart health
Helps cure sleep disorders
Improves digestion
Reduces inflammation
Boosts respiratory health
Strengthens oral health
Improves blood circulation

Black Raisins
Has potassium which regulates heart beat and lowers blood pressure
Has iron that supports the immune system and helps make amino acids

Contains sugars for instant energy

Has potassium which regulates heart beat and lowers blood pressure
Has iron that supports the immune system and helps make amino acids
Contains sugars for instant energy
Rich in antioxidants that helps to give clear complexion
Prevents premature ageing
Prevents hair fall and premature graying
Fight against bad cholesterol
Useful in treating osteoporosis

Monday, September 25, 2017

Tuna Kebab

Tuna Kebab

These kebabs are very close to my heart not just for their taste but more for their amazing health benefits. The best part about them is it's simple and quick to make. 

Tuna (cooked and skinned) – 3 slices
Potato (medium) – 1
Onion (medium) – 1
Egg - 1
Green chilies - 2
Coriander leaves – ¼ cup
Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp
Pepper powder – 1 tsp
Salt – to taste

Shred the tuna
Boil the potato and mash it
Mix them well
Add salt, turmeric, pepper powder, finely chopped onions, green chilies and coriander
Add egg yolk to the mixture
Mix thoroughly
Shape into kebabs and dip in egg white and roll in the brown rice powder
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a non-stick pan
Spread it well
Place the kebabs on the pan and fry till lightly browned on both sides
Serve hot

(You can use the kebabs to make healthy burgers or sandwiches)

Note: Fresh tuna has a strong odour. Apply wheat flour to the pieces before washing them. It helps to get rid of the odour.

Health Benefits of Tuna 

Has high level of omega-3
Lowers risk of heart diseases
Anti-inflammatory, can help reduce blood pressure
Packed with proteins
Helps in weight loss
Improves blood circulation
Boosts immunity

Health Benefits of Omega-3
Omega-3 fatty acids are a category of polyunsaturated fats (PUFA) that help to maintain cell membranes of every cell in our body.  Omega-3 fatty acids are considered essential, and we need them to function normally. The 3 main omega-3s are EPA, DHA and ALA. 

ALA,DHA and EPA are not made by our body,  so we need to get them from our diet. EPA and DHA are the primary omega-3s you need to support heart health and can be found in fatty fish like tuna, salmon, mackerel and omega-3 supplements.

These fatty acids provide amazing health benefits ranging from improving symptoms of existing disease (like lowering triglycerides) to preventing occurrence of age-related macular degeneration and Alzheimer’s disease. They also help to keep our skin clear and beautiful, keep allergies and inflammation under control, reduce joint pain, reduce symptoms of depression, to name a few.
Heart Benefits
Lower triglycerides (blood fat) reduce heart attack, abnormal heart rhythms, and strokes in people with known cardiovascular disease. It also slows the buildup of atherosclerotic plaques (hardening of the arteries), and lowers blood pressure slightly.
Lowers levels of depression
research suggests that omega-3s may help protect against Alzheimer's disease and dementia, and have a positive effect on gradual memory loss linked to aging
Reduces Inflammation
Rheumatoid Arthritis:  A number of studies have found that fish oil supplements significantly reduced stiffness and joint pain.
Lubricates Joints

Fish high in DHA and EPA omega-3 fatty acids
Salmon (wild has more omega-3s than farmed)
Lake trout

Good food sources of ALA
Flaxseed and flaxseed oil

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Dark Chocolate Fudge Mung Brownies

Dark Chocolate Fudge Mung Brownies

Green gram (Mung) – ¾ cup (150 gms)
Oats (powdered) – ¼ cup (20 gms)
Jaggery powder – 4 tbsp (vary according to taste)
Dates – 6
Milk - 100 to 200 ml
Coconut oil – 1 tbsp
Vanilla extract – 1 tsp
Chocolate chips or chunks – ½ cup
Baking powder – ¼ tsp
Salt – a pinch

Chocolate chips or chunks – 1/4 cup

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C
Soak the mung for an hour and pressure cook till soft and mushy
Mix all the ingredients except the chocolate chips or chunks
Blend in a mixer till smooth using milk as required
Mix the chocolate chips or chunks and bake for 15 mins or so till done
Sprinkle the remaining chocolate chips or chunks and let it cool

Health Benefits of Green Gram

Rich in fibre and resistant starch
Helps in weight loss
Lowers blood pressure
Healthiest source of plant protein
Rich in manganese, potassium, magnesium, iron, folate, copper, zinc and various B vitamins
Helps lower cholesterol Levels and protect against heart disease
Controls sugar levels and helps prevent Type 2 Diabetes
Has anti-aging benefits

Resistant Starch

This type of starch is called Resistant Starch. It works like soluble, fermentable fiber. When the bacteria in our digestive system digest resistant starches, they form several compounds, including gases and short-chain fatty acids, especially a beneficial fatty acid called Butyrate. Resistant Starch appears to increase butyrate production more when compared with other soluble fibers.
Butyrate is the preferred energy source of the cells lining the colon. Butyrate has beneficial effects on the colon and overall health. It maintains the colon lining and is believed to prevent colon cancer. It also helps to increase metabolism, decrease inflammation and improve stress resistance.

Potential benefits of Resistant Starch

Improved blood fats
May help to lower blood cholesterol and fats while also decreasing the production of new fat cells
Can increase the amount of fat we utilize for energy.

Better Satiety
Can help us feel full by triggering the release of hormones that reduce the drive to eat. After someone starts eating more RS, it may take up to one year for gut hormones to adapt.
Slows down the amount of nutrients released into the bloodstream, which stabilizes appetite

Better Insulin Sensitivity
It doesn’t digest into blood sugar, so less insulin release
Lowered blood sugar levels
Might improve insulin sensitivity

Improved Digestion
May help alleviate irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), diverticulitis, constipation and ulcerative colitis
Can add bulk and water to stool, helping in regular bowel movements
Can prevent development of abnormal bacterial cells in the colon and enhance mineral absorption (especially calcium).

Better Body Composition
Since Resistant Starch has less energy (calories) per gram than other starches, it can help us eat less.
Improved immunity
Can influence the production of immune cells

Health Benefits of Jaggery
Excellent source of iron
Cleanses the liver
Prevents premenstrual syndrome
Has antioxidants - zinc and selenium which boost immunity

Health Benefits of Cocoa
Lowers blood pressure
Reduces risk factors for heart disease
Rich in antioxidants – protect skin from sun damage
Improves brain function