Your Healthy Tweaks To Traditional Indian Recipes ?

Discussion in 'Cuisines of India' started by startinganew, May 29, 2019.

  1. deepthyanoop

    deepthyanoop Gold IL'ite

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  2. Novalis

    Novalis Gold IL'ite

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    The spinach raita got me thinking...yogurt and spinach, never tried the combo. I tried today. Added spinach and sweet potato and plantain, giving it a carribbean callaloo twist. Surprisingly, the creamy curry turned out well. Thanks for the yogurt-based recipe tip of spinach.

    upload_2019-5-30_16-36-17.png
     
  3. KashmirFlower

    KashmirFlower IL Hall of Fame

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    @startinganew
    Very nice thread, I always looked how to avoid deep fries, I will try pakodas in oven.
    Can we make urad dal vada in oven? My kid loves vada but as want to avoid deep fry, i don't make them at home.

    Indian meal is complete with little changes.
    1) quinoa upma/pulov instead of ravva upma
    2) oats payasam with dates and raisins and alomonds and kaju instead semya and sugar . All nuts laddu with dates and raisins, no jaggery
    3) Replace tamarind with lemon, reduce chillis and masalas.(which is hot for body)
    4) use olive oil, whole wheat, brown rice and use other milltets
    5) avoid overcooking vegetables, but only to the level of sauteed (makes big diff)
    6) Replace fruit like mangoes, bananas for desert
    7) nuts and seeds like sunflower,sesame seed laddu for snack. Sprouts , salads , home made juices
    8) lot of grated carrot and coconut and nuts and less atukulu/avvalakki in atukulu upma
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2019
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  4. startinganew

    startinganew Gold IL'ite

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    Oh my - what a treat to the eyes @Novalis - thank you very much for sharing! You're quite the risk-taker in combining veggies together! :clapclap:That looks delicious. Did you just sautee the sweet potato and plantain or boil them before adding? Did you add any spices to this combination?
     
  5. startinganew

    startinganew Gold IL'ite

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    Haha! Mine loves vadai too - ever since he heard the story of the crow, fox and the vadai. But from day 1, I've been telling him the cutlets (potato, peas and carrots) made in the oven are a type of "vadai". (In a year or so he is going to be very angry with me when he discovers it is not really a vadai! ;)) No, I haven't tried to make urid dal vadai in the oven.

    Indian meal is complete with little changes.
    Super! Haven't tried both of these. Thanks, will give it a try. I will google for an easy 1 pot quinoa pulao using instant pot. (Am too lazy to use pan to cook quinoa and then pulao as step 2. :p)

    :-D Please take my words with a pinch of salt. I am the pro-spices/masala proponent of my family. Spices are after all plant products and have loads of micro-nutrients and healing properties. I do agree that usually recipes that call for more spices tend to need more oil and salt to compensate for the strength of their flavors - which is what makes it less healthy. Of course for specific health concerns, stomach ulcers, heat in the body, they need to be reduced somewhat. This is a to-do research project for me - catalogue and investigate spices and their beneficial properties. Disclaimer: I love my spices. The heat one feels when a nice blend of spices hit your tongue is pure pleasure for me.

    Fully agree! We are trying to replace rice with millets along with most indian curries.


    - @KashmirFlower So nice to hear someone else thinks so too! :cheer:
    The common opposition I've heard to this: but fruits are best eaten in the morning. And I scream inside my head: I don't know about that - but fruit as desert is MUCH better than eating the mysore pak or laddu packed from months ago after dinner. :BangHead:

    - Mango I try, but banana not really. But yes given how bananas are consistently sweet - good idea @KashmirFlower :thumbup:


    I love healthy dessert projects (and the only two I go for are almond flour + wheat, banana, nuts, etc - poured in to cup cake pans or normal cake pans). I don't use sunflower seed or sesame seed in my cooking at all. Thank you for these interesting new ideas! Making the laddu balls might also be a good play idea to do in the kitchen with the kid.


    Sprouts are a lot of work, na? Do you have any hacks on including this regularly? Which beans do you sprout? Shouldn't this be planned one day in advance and also eaten within a day/two of sprouting?

    [/QUOTE]
    What is atukulu and avvalakki in English? I use grated carrots on dosai sometimes. Where do you use them?
    Coconut - I love it and use it a lot. At any point in time I have frozen grated coconut, fresh grated coconut, dry dessicated coconut, Instant coconut powder that is sold in a box, and now recently coconut flour to add to pancakes in my kitchen. Listing it here - makes me realize I just may be going overboard with coconut. :D


    @KashmirFlower Thanks a lot for sharing all that you do. :worship2:
     
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  6. KashmirFlower

    KashmirFlower IL Hall of Fame

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    @startinganew
    atukulu is called Flattened rice/poha, we wash it and set it for 10 min. after that given tadka, add grated fresh coconut, carrot, ground nuts. eaten as Breakfast.

    I like this almond flour and honey cake: Gluten-Free Honey Almond Cake - Cookie and Kate
    may be avoid almond burfi with this.

    Sprouts, with Green Gram is easy to make, Now a days I buy in Indian stores, vegetables section. they are ok for 4-5 days in refrigerator. Soaked nuts go well with this.

    raw vs cooked veggies: I like veggies in Thai curries crunchy, than mushy in our curries. i read several places, it is good to include uncooked food in your diet.

    Problem with spices and hot mirchi is after few days our tongue gets used to that taste and until we increase a bit it won't give that pleasure of spices. But anything little planned freshly cooked with less spice or more spices, is real joy to eat.
     
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  7. Novalis

    Novalis Gold IL'ite

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    I enjoy fidgeting in my free-spirited kitchen — what will happen if I add this to that mix blended in that paste. Thus, the curiosity in whisking yogurt in spinach curry on reading your insight.

    • Sweat the sweet potato and plantain in little salt and oil. Keep it aside. (this is my whimsical carribean runaway just because I had one of each kind languishing in my fridge)
    • Whisk the yogurt. Keep it aside.
    • Microwave sliced onion + chopped tomato with salt and chilly powder for 8 minutes on high.
    • Crackle cumin, mustard, curry leaves, garlic, ginger, coriander leaves, red chilly, green chilly, asafoetida, turmeric in a pan with a tea spoon of oil.
    • Add the sweated vegetables. Stir for 5 minutes.
    • Add chopped spinach to the pan. Cook for few minutes.
    • Add the microwaved and mashed onion and tomato. Gently stir, cover the lid.
    • Finally pour the yogurt. Stir, rest on low flame for 3-4 minutes.
    I had no idea how any of that would have turned out while cooking till I tasted. It exceeded expectation. Thank you for the uncommon yogurt and spinach hint :beer-toast1:
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2019
  8. SinghManisha

    SinghManisha Platinum IL'ite

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    Idli, dosa, upma, Omelettes, chole, chicken curry , chutneys etc.
     
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  9. SinghManisha

    SinghManisha Platinum IL'ite

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    @startinganew spinach pesto is easy to make and freezes well. I make a large batch and freeze in ice cube trays. Just thaw and use for a quick pasta on weekdays.
    Here’s my recipe
    Blend a big bunch of Basil leaves ( I add half or 1/4 as much of spinach), walnuts ( 10-12 halves), garlic ( 5 cloves or more, olive oil ( 1/4 cup), salt , red pepper flakes and (little water for blending ) .
     
  10. startinganew

    startinganew Gold IL'ite

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    Ok, got it. In the Aloo poha recipe I used to get in my lunch box (many many years ago) from mother, the poha after soaking was sauteed in some oil and potato was added to it. I like your healthy twist of carrots, coconut and water-cooked :grinning: poha.

    Nice, making a list of all the links I am getting in this thread - for when I stand in the kitchen and not know what to make. :hearteyes:

    I've seen it too! I have never bought it! That will change now. :banana:

    True. My next thread was going to be about raw foods/salads. :cool:

    Are you and my husband best friends? Just kidding. :laughing: He keeps telling me the same thing! I do see the point in it - it's like sound, the more you get used to being in loud environments, your brain loses differentiation of the softer sounds because they tend to get lost in the noise floor. And you need more and more to stimulate your senses.

    Well-said. :thumbup:
     
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