Cauliflower Pulao/Pilaf

Cauliflower Pulao 1.JPG

Cauliflower Pulao/Pilaf

Hi friends! Cauliflower Pulao/Pilaf is an easy recipe which can be prepared as one pot meal! Pulav/Pilaf, a rice dish consumed mainly in Central Asia, South Asia and the Middle East.

 Ingredients:

1 tea cup Basmati Rice

2 cups Cauliflower tiny florets

15 cloves Garlic, crushed

1 Bay leaf /Tej Patta

3-4 Cloves, powdered

3-4 black peppers, powdered

3 black cardamoms

2 ” stick Cinnamon

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1 tsp salt or salt to taste

3 tbsp Cooking oil

2 tea cups water

Method:

Step 1.

Wash well and soak the rice in water for 30 minutes. Drain and keep ready.

Step 2.

Wash the cauliflower florets well under running water. Drain and keep aside.

Step 3.

In a heavy bottom pan take the cooking oil and place it on high flame. Add Bay leaf/Tej patta, Black cardamom, Cinnamon, turmeric ,powdered cloves and pepper. Sauté for few seconds , add garlic paste stir for few seconds .

Step 4.

Add Cauliflower florets to these spices and sauté on medium flame for few more seconds.

Step 5.

Add drained rice, salt and two tea cups of water. Bring it to a boil and reduce the heat. Cover and cook on the slow flame for fifteen minutes or till rice is well cooked.

Step 6.

Serve hot with mint Raita, pickle and papads!

 Health benefits of Rice :

The health benefits of rice are many. Rice is the staple grain for more than half the world’s population, especially Asia. Rice is becoming increasingly popular in other parts of the world as well. Rice is a great source of complex carbohydrates which give us the energy we need. According to FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of United Nations), rice provides 20 percent of the world’s dietary energy supply.

Rice contains all the amino acids essential for building and maintaining muscle tissue, and make up antibodies, enzymes, and hormones. These amino acids also help maintain healthy skin, hair, eyesight, and nourish the heart, lungs, tendons and ligaments, brain, nervous system and glands.

Rice is low in fat, cholesterol, and sodium and hence makes a perfect food for those with high blood pressure and requiring a low-sodium diet. The calcium in rice (especially brown rice) helps lower blood pressure.

Ref. http://vegrecipes4u.com/health-benefits-of-rice/

Nick’s kitchen medical Disclaimer:

  • Nick’s kitchen is for Vegetarians. It sometimes provides education and support to individuals who want to become vegetarian, or move toward a more vegetarian diet.
  • Nick’s kitchen provides some information on vegetarian and vegan diets to the best of their knowledge and abilities.
  • Nick’s kitchen does not claim to be health care professional, nutritionist, nor does it claims to treat any illness through vegan or vegetarian diet.
  • If you have a medical condition,Nick’s kitchen recommend that you consult your health care professionals before changing your diet.
  • Any changes that you make to your diet, and the results of those changes, are your decision and your responsibility.

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Chickpea Pilaf / Chole biryani

Chickpea Pilaf / Chole biryani

chana pulao.jpg

Hi friends !Here is a yummy combination of rice, chickpeas / Kabuli chanas /Gabanzo beans, with spices. It is a complete, nutritious and healthy meal.

Cooking time: 20 minutes approx.

Cuisine: Indian , North Indian

Course : main

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 1 1/2 cup chickpeas/chole/garbanzo/kabuli chanas, canned or cooked
  • 3cups sliced onions
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds/jeera
  • 2 bay leafs/tejpatta
  • 11/2 tsp salt / or to taste
  • 3 cloves, powdered
  • 1 black cardamom, powdered
  • 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 6 black pepper corns, powdered
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 1/4 tsp gram masala/ mixed spices powder
  • 2 cups water

  Method:

Step 1.

Wash the rice well and soak it for 15 minutes.

Step 2.

Soak the dry chickpeas/chole/garbanzo/kabuli chanas overnight.In a pressure cooker take the soaked dried chickpeas/chole/garbanzo/kabuli chanas along with the water soaked in. Add salt to it and place the cooker on high flame. The moment full pressure is formed, reduce to low flame for twenty minutes. Switch off the stove.

( If using canned chickpeas/chole/garbanzo/kabuli chanas, drain the liquid out of the can of chickpeas and wash the chickpeas well. Keep aside.

Step 3.

Heat the oil in a deep heavy bottom pan, add cumin seed. When cumin starts crackling add the bay leaves, powdered cloves, pepper powder, cinnamon, cardamom powder sauté for few seconds. Add the sliced onions. Fry the onions till golden brown.

Step 4.

Add chickpeas/chole/garbanzo/kabuli chanas and rice, salt and water. After it comes to a boil, reduce the heat to low flame and cover the pan and let it cook till rice is well cooked (approximately 10-12 minutes). Sprinkle lemon juice and gram masala, switch off the stove.

Step 5.

Serve hot with  Potato Raita/ Coconut Raita or any other Raita of your choice !

Note:

Cover and cook the rice on low flame after water starts boiling. Don’t stir the rice while they are cooking.check the rice in about 110-15 minutes. Check when the  the water has evaporated and rice is tender and well cooked, switch off the stove.

HEALTH BENEFITS:

  1. White Chickpeas is a versatile source of protein in the human body.
  2. It helps in boosting the protein power and energy, which is a basic requirement for the healthy body.
  3. Chickpeas consist natural protein and vitamins which helps in muscle and body building.
  4. They are low in fat and cholesterol.
  5. Boiled chickpeas are highly beneficial to provide protein, foliate and zinc in the body.
  6. Chickpeas are high dietary fibre, which is an ultimate source of carbohydrates, hence strongly recommended to the diabetics
  7. Basmati is a healthy ‘supergrain’

    Basmati is gluten-free and low in fat. It contains all eight essential amino acids, folic acid, and is very low in sodium and has no cholesterol.

    Basmati has a low to medium glycaemic index, meaning that energy is released at a slower, steadier rate leading to a more balanced level of energy.

Ref.http://www.tilda.com/our-rice/why-basmati-is-best

Difference between basmati rice and regular rice (both the brown and white versions)?

Basmati rice is a unique species of rice originating from India. Just like all species of rice, basmati is available in white or brown versions, depending on the extent of the milling process. Like jasmine rice, it has its own unique smell. In the case of basmati, this smell is due to the presence of a chemical called 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline, which is found in basmati rice at about 90 parts per billion. That’s about 12 times more than in other types of rice, giving basmati its special aroma. Brown basmati rice is comparable to other types of brown rice in nutrient content (although it does contain about 20% more fiber compared to most other types of brown rice), and white basmati rice is comparable to other types of white rice.

Ref. http://whfoods.org/genpage.php?tname=dailytip&dbid=365

 

Nick’s kitchen medical Disclaimer:

  • Nick’s kitchen is for Vegetarians. It sometimes provides education and support to individuals who want to become vegetarian, or move toward a more vegetarian diet.
  • Nick’s kitchen provides some information on vegetarian and vegan diets to the best of their knowledge and abilities.
  • Nick’s kitchen does not claim to be health care professional, nutritionist, nor does it claims to treat any illness through vegan or vegetarian diet.
  • If you have a medical condition,Nick’s kitchen recommend that you consult your health care professionals before changing your diet.
  • Any changes that you make to your diet, and the results of those changes, are your decision and your responsibility.

 

Vegetable Fried Rice

Fried Rice

vegetable fried rice

Hi friends! Here is a quick recipe for Indo Chinese Vegetable Fried rice absolutely easy to make. Vegetarians will enjoy this delicious Steamed rice cooked with vegetables and  sauces. Serve with sweet and sour curry.

Preparation time: 30 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Course: main

Cuisine: Indo Chinese

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

for cooking the rice:

  • 1 cup long grained rice or basmati rice
  • 750 ml water
  • ½ tsp salt or as required

Vegetables:

  • 1/2 cup spring onion /Shallots
  • 1/2 cup carrots, into fine tiny cubes
  • 1/2 cup French beans, very finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup cabbage, very finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup Bell pepper (red and yellow) , chopped finely
  • 9 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1″ ginger, finely grated
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp vinegar
  • ½ tsp black pepper powder
  • 3 tbsp cooking oil
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped spring onions to garnish
  • 1 tsp salt or / salt as required

Method:

Cooking the rice:

Step 1.

Wash rice very well till the water runs clear and soak rice in water for 15 minutes,drain and keep aside.

Step 2.

In a sauce pan, bring to boil 750 ml. of water with salt , add the soaked and drained rice to the boiling water.

Step 3.

On a low flame cook the rice without the lid , when the rice is cooked, remove the pan from stove and drain the rice. Keep aside.

Fried vegetable rice :

Step 1.

As the rice is cooling, cut the vegetables finely and keep aside.

Step 2.

Heat oil in a kadahi /wok / pan, add the garlic and saute for few seconds till golden, add ginger and the spring onions /shallots and saute for about three minutes on medium flame stirring continuously.

Step 3.

Add all the finely chopped vegetables, increase the flame on a high initially and stir fry the vegetables on a high flame for 3-4 minutes. Then stir fry on a medium flame stirring continuously so that vegetables are cooked and also retain their crunchiness and crispiness.

Step 4.

Add the soy sauce, salt and pepper, mix and add the rice. Stir fry for a few minutes till the sauce is well blended with the fried rice well. Switch off the stove.

Step 5.

Garnish with finely chopped shallots/ spring onions and serve the vegetable fried rice hot, plain or with an Indo Chinese vegetable Manchurian.

Note:

  • Some green chili sauce can be added to make rice chili hot.
  • Salt is added a little less in Fried vegetable rice as Soy sauce too has salt in it.

Health Benefits of Frozen Mixed Vegetables:

Besides their convenience, mixed frozen vegetables are complementary — some vegetables add nutrients to the mix that others lack — giving you a wider variety of nutrients in the blend. The only nutrient you won’t get from mixed vegetables is vitamin B-12, because it’s found in animal products.

Fiber

Vegetables have soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber keeps blood sugar balanced by slowing absorption of carbohydrates. It also lowers cholesterol by carrying it out of the body. Insoluble fiber keeps food moving through the digestive tract, which prevents constipation and diverticular disease.

Healthy Eyes

The substances that give vegetables their color — carotenoids — provide nutrients for your eyes because they’re a form of vitamin A. Mixed vegetables contain several carotenoids: alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin. Alpha- and beta-carotene are converted into the form of vitamin A that is essential for vision. Lutein and zeaxanthin function as antioxidants. They’re the only carotenoids found in the retina, where they may help prevent age-related macular degeneration. One cup of boiled, mixed vegetables delivers more than 200 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin A.

Antioxidants

In addition to antioxidants that support your eyes, mixed vegetables have other antioxidants that fight free radicals. Free radicals are produced as a byproduct of essential biochemical processes. If they’re not neutralized by antioxidants, free radicals cause cellular damage that leads to illnesses, such as cardiovascular disease. The same portion of mixed vegetables has 30 percent of the recommended daily intake of manganese and 5 percent of the daily value of vitamins C and E. As a water-soluble antioxidant, vitamin C protects cells throughout the body. Vitamin E is a fat-soluble antioxidant, which gives it the ability to neutralize free radicals in lipids that have varied roles, such as providing cellular structure and transporting fats through the blood. Manganese has the job of protecting mitochondria, which are the structures inside cells that produce energy. Green peas are the highest source of vitamin C, while lima beans and carrots boost vitamin E. Lima beans also have at least double the manganese of other vegetables.

Strong Bones

Calcium and phosphorus combine to form the mineral that builds bones, called hydroxyapatite. Bones are continuously maintained through a process in which old or damaged bone is removed and rebuilt. You need a constant supply of these minerals throughout your life to keep your bones healthy and to prevent osteoporosis. You’ll gain 5 percent of the recommended daily intake of calcium and 13 percent of phosphorus from 1 cup of mixed vegetables. All of the vegetables have both minerals, but corn is low in calcium, while snap beans and carrots have less phosphorus than the others.

Preparation Tips

Combine mixed frozen vegetables with ground beef, onions and beef broth, and top them with mashed potatoes to make shepherd’s pie. Use them in a stir-fry with chicken and soy sauce or turn mixed vegetables into a casserole with the addition of onion, cheese and mayonnaise. Make a quick vegetable soup by adding a bag of mixed vegetables to beef broth and undrained, canned tomatoes. Alternatively, use them in a salad.

Nick’s kitchen medical Disclaimer:

  • Nick’s kitchen is for Vegetarians. It sometimes provides education and support to individuals who want to become vegetarian, or move toward a more vegetarian diet.
  • Nick’s kitchen provides some information on vegetarian and vegan diets to the best of their knowledge and abilities.
  • Nick’s kitchen does not claim to be health care professional, nutritionist, nor does it claims to treat any illness through vegan or vegetarian diet.
  • If you have a medical condition,Nick’s kitchen recommend that you consult your health care professionals before changing your diet.
  • Any changes that you make to your diet, and the results of those changes, are your decision and your responsibility.

 

 

 

 

 

Tomato Rice

Tomato Rice

Tomato Rice

It is easy and quick to put together recipe. The only precaution to be taken is that tomato gravy should be sufficient for the amount of rice.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 15 minutes

Cuisine: South Indian

Serves: 2

Ingredients:

3 cups cooked rice/boiled white rice

4 medium size tomatoes, puree it in the blender
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp salt or / Salt to taste
1 tbsp cooking oil
1 tsp sambar masala (Optional)
1 tsp mustard seeds
2 tbsp raw peanuts
1 sprig curry leaves / kadi patta
2 medium size onions, finely chopped

For The Masala Powder
2 tsp oil
1 tsp urad dal /split black lentils
1 tbsp chana dal / bengal gram dal
1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds
2 tsp coriander powder
1 red chili, whole
1 tbsp grated coconut
1/4 tsp asafetida/heeng
Method :

For the masala powder

Step 1.

In a pan heat the oil in a pan, add the chana dal, urad dal, saute for half a minute. Add fenugreek seeds and coriander seeds and sauté on a medium flame for a minute.

Step 2.

Add asafetida powder fry for few seconds, and cook on a slow flame for one minutes stirring continuously. Switch off the stove. Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature.

Step 3.

When cool, grind to a fine powder. Keep aside.

Method:

Step 1.

In a pan take the tomato pulp, turmeric powder and salt, mix and cook on a medium flame for three to four minutes, stirring at regular inter wells.

Step 2.

Add the prepared masala powder to the tomato pulp, mix and cook on a medium flame for a minute. Switch off the stove , Keep the tomato paste aside.

Step 3.

In a deep pan heat the oil and add the mustard seeds. When the seeds start crackling, add the curry leaves and peanuts, sauté on a low flame for few minutes or till the peanuts turn light golden brown in colour.

Step 4.

Add the onions, mix well and sauté on a medium flame for another couple of minutes, stirring continuously. Add the tomato paste and 1/4 cup of water, mix well and cook on a medium flame for two minutes.

Step 5.

Fold in the rice ,salt in to the tomato paste and mix gently cook on a medium flame for another few minutes, stirring occasionally.

Step 6.

Serve hot. Coconut raita / pachadi and papadams make very good accompaniments to tomato rice.

 

Rice with Lentil/Khichdi

Khichdi Moong DalMoong dal khichdi

Moong dal khichdi is a very basic and healthy food. Every house hold has their own recipe for khichdi. At my home khichdi was made with split moong dal and rice. Khichdi is probably India’s most popular version of the rice dishes. It is eaten when one is sick, has an upset stomach, needs some comfort food or wants to eat light yet filling. Every household makes khichdi and the taste and style of cooking may differ depending on the way it is prepared and ingredients used. But a basic khichdi is usually made from white rice, yellow, green or split moong dal and topped with some ghee. All these heal and soothe our digestive system. But khichdi is more than just a comfort food. It has numerous other benefits for our body.There are a variety of ways to make khichdi. Here is one  popular way of making khichdi:

Recipe will serve:

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup basmati rice
  • ½ cup moong dal / green gram lentil husked
  • 1 tbsp clarified butter (ghee) / or Olive oil as suitable
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds /jeera
  • 1/8 tsp asafetida /hing
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper powder
  • 1tsp salt
  • 2 1/2 cups water

Method:

Step 1.

Wash and soak the rice and moong dal in about four cups of water for at least 15 minutes. Drain the water and set aside.

Step 2.

Heat the clarified butter in a heavy bottom pan over medium high heat. When ghee or oil is moderately hot, add cumin seeds, when it starts spluttering, add asafetida.

Step 3.

After the asafetida is slightly pink in colour, add soaked and drained rice and dal, salt and water stir.

Step 4.

Let it come to a boil, reduce the heat to low flame, cover and cook for approximately 8-10 minutes.

Step 5.

Turn off the heat and wait for 7-8 minutes before opening the pan.

Step 6.

Mix the khichdi well, dal and rice should be very soft. Serve hot pouring hot butter over the khichdi.

Note: Papdam, pickle, yogurt and are very good accompaniments to the khichdi.

Khichdi – 4 reasons why it is more than just comfort food!

Wholesome meal: Khichdi is a balance of carbohydrate and protein. Moong beans additionally are a good source of dietary fibre, vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium. It has all the 10 essential amino acids, making it a complete protein. Freshly-cooked khichdi eaten with pure cow’s ghee provides the right amount of macro-nutrients, complex carbohydrate, protein and fat. Adding vegetables to it makes it a complete meal.

Gluten-free: People who suffer from gluten sensitivity or celiac disease, cannot process gluten which is storage protein found in certain grains like wheat, rye, barley. But they can opt to eat khichdi on a few days as it packs enough nutrition and yet is light and gluten-free. Many people who aren’t suffering from this disease also opt for gluten-free food as a lifestyle change. They too can eat khichdi.

Balances dosha: This dish can be served any time of the day. It is known for its ability to detoxify the body and balance the three doshas – Vatta, Pitta, Kapha. It is a tridoshic food which has a calming effect on the body and is a staple of an Ayurvedic diet. A delicious and nourishing dish of rice, moong cooked with ghee, salt and haldi (turmeric), adding the balance of  basic elements – earth and water for increasing energy and immunity, fire for stimulating digestive enzymes.

Easy to digest: Khichdi is soothing for the intestine and helps in settling an upset stomach when eaten with curd. (Read more benefits of curd). For babies and elderly, it is a hearty meal packed with nutrients and easy to digest as both have slow metabolism and their digestive strength is weak too.

Ref. http://www.thehealthsite.com/fitness/khichdi-4-reasons-why-it-is-more-than-just-comfort-food-k214/

Green Peas Rice

 Rice with peas 2

Green Peas Pulao / Matar Pulav

Serves: 2
Cooking time (approx.): 20 minutes
Cuisine: North Indian, Vegetarian
Ingredients:

  • 1  cup Basmati rice / long grain rice, uncooked
  • 1  cup green peas, shelled
  • 2  medium size onions, finely sliced
  • 1 tsp Cumin seed / Geera
  • 2  tablespoons butter olive oil
  • 2 1/2  cups water
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt to taste

Method:

Step 1.

Wash the rice well. Soak it in water for half an hour for best results. Keep aside.

Step 2.

Heat oil on medium flame in a large heavy-bottomed pan, add cumin seed, when it splutters add sliced onions .

Step 3.

Fry for a few minutes, till onions turn light golden brown.

Step 4.

Add the rice, green peas, water and salt to the fried onions. Mix well bring to boil on high flame. Once it stars boiling , reduce heat to low flame and cook covered on low level for ten to fifteen minutes or till all water is absorbed.

Step 5.

Serve hot , garnishing with a sprinkling of black pepper powder.

Note: Green peas / matar are a good way to add more taste to Basmati rice.Green peas rice is more delicious when served with curries, Raitas and salads .

Vegetable Rice

DSC02171

Prep time: 30 minutes

Cook time: 25 minutes

Total time: 55 minutes

 Recipe type: main

Cuisine: Indian

Serves: 8

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups long grained or basmati rice soaked for 30 minutes
  • 1/2 cup each (cauliflower, carrots, green peas, French beans )
  • 1 big potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
  • 2 medium onions, sliced
  • 4 1/2 cup water
  • 2 to 3 tbsp Olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt or / salt to taste
  • 1 tsp cumin Jeera/cumin seeds
  • 1 bay leaf / tej patta
  • 2-3 cloves/ laung
  • 1 black cardamom / badi elaichi
  • 1 pinch of Nutmeg/ Jayaphal
  • 1 inch cinnamon/ dal chini

Method:

Step 1.

In a deep sauce pan heat oil and fry all the whole spices for 2-3 minutes and a nice fragrance is emitted.

Step 2.

Add the onions and  fry them till golden brown .

Step 3.

Add all the veggies, potatoes and  1/2 teaspoon salt, saute again for 4-5 minutes on a low flame.

Step 4.

Drain the rice add to the fried spices and vegetables and mix well.

Step 5.

Add four cups of water, 1 1/2 teaspoon salt and stir.cover with well fitting lid and bring it to boil on high flame. Reduce the heat to low flame and let the rice cook till the water is absorbed and the rice is well cooked.

Step 6.

Switch off the stove and let the rice stand for 6-7 minutes.

Step 7.

Serve the vegetable pulao hot with some side dishes or raita.
Note: Aromatic, very delicious and wholesome,vegetable pulao is an easy and simple preparation, with Basmati rice.