Kamal Kakdi /Lotus stem Koftas/ dumplings

lotus root            Kamal Kakadi Kofte 2

Kamal Kakdi /Lotus stem Koftas/ dumplings

Lotus root, known as renkon in Japan and Lián ou in Chinese, hold a special place since older times in their cultures. The roots as well as lotus seeds, raw or cooked, have found application in variety of oriental recipes in East, Southeast Asian, and Pacific regions.

To prepare, break the root at nodal intersections into individual parts. Wash it thoroughly in cold running water before use. Trim the ends. Peel its inedible outer tough skin using a paring knife to expose ice-white, daikon (radish) like flesh underneath. It can be cut into cubes, or chopped to fine sticks in a ways desired as in other vegetables. Rinse the slices immediately in the vinegar or acidulated (lemon) water to prevent from discoloration.

Hi friends! today I have prepared Kamal Kakdi /Lotus root Kofte/ dumplings. It is a tasty, nutritious and easy to make curry.

Kamal Kakdi /Lotus root Kofte/ dumplings

Cooking time : 20-25 minutes

Servings : 4

Cuisine: Indian

Course: Main Course-Veg

Level Of Cooking: Easy

Ingredients:

For koftas / dumplings

  • 250 grams Lotus leaves cleaned grated and soaked in water
  • 2 medium Potatoes , boiled peeled, grated
  • 1 medium size Onion, finely grated
  • 1 level tsp Salt / or to taste
  • 1 ” ginger piece , finely grated
  • 1/4 tsp Red chili powder
  • 4 tbsp Gram flour /besan/ chick pea flour
  • 1 tbsp Corn flour
  • Oil to deep fry

For Gravy

  • 2 medium size Onions, grated
  • 2 medium size Tomatoes, grated
  • 2 ” piece Ginger, finely grated
  • 15 cloves of Garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 3 tsp Coriander powder
  • 1 tsp roasted cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp Red chili powder
  • 2 tbsp Cilantro/ coriander, finely chopped
  • 1 level tsp Salt / or to taste
  • 1 tsp corn flour
  • 1/2 tsp Garam masala powder
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil

Method :

For lotus stems/ kamal kakdi koftas or dumplings:

Step 1.

Wash lotus stems/ kamal kakdi well. Scrape lightly each lotus stems/ kamal kakdi. Grate the lotus stems/ kamal kakdi in a mixing bowl.

Step 2.

Add boiled ,peeled and grated potatoes into the same mixing bowl with grated stems/ kamal kakdi bowl. Add salt, ginger, red chili powder, gram flour and corn flour and mix well. Shape into small balls and keep aside.

Step 3.

Heat sufficient oil in a kadai, slide in gently the stems/ kamal kakdi balls and deep fry on medium heat till golden. Drain on a paper kitchen towel to remove excessive oil.

For Gravy

Step 4.

To make gravy heat oil in a non stick pan. Add onions and sauté till translucent and light golden brown.

Step 5.

Add grated ginger, garlic paste and mix and fry for 1-2 minutes. Add turmeric powder, coriander powder, roasted cumin powder, red chili powder mix well and sauté for few seconds.

Step 6.

Add tomato puree and mix and continue to sauté. Add 1/2 cup water and mix. Sauté, stirring, till oil begins to separate. Add 2 cup water and mix.

Step 7.

Mix Corn flour in 4 tbsp water till lump free. Add this to the gravy and cook till the corn flour gets cooked and blended.

Step 8.

Drain kofte / dumplings and add to the gravy and simmer for a few minutes. Add coriander leaves, salt, garam masala powder and mix. Cover, reduce heat, cook for 7-8 minutes.

Step 9.

Serve hot garnishing with finely chopped coriander/ cilantro.

Health benefits of Lotus root:

  • Lotus root is one of the moderate calorie root vegetables. 100 g root-stem provides about 74 calories. Nevertheless, it composed of several health benefiting phyto-nutrients, minerals, and vitamins.
  • Lotus rhizome is very good source dietary fiber; 100 g flesh provides 4.9 g or 13% of daily-requirement of fiber. Dietary fiber together with slow digesting complex carbohydrates in the lotus root help reduce blood cholesterol, sugar, body weight and constipation conditions.
  • Fresh lotus root is one of the excellent sources of vitamin C. 100 g root provides 44 mg or 73% of daily-recommended values. Vitamin C is a powerful water soluble anti-oxidant. It is required for the collagen synthesis inside the human body. Collagen is the main structural protein inside the body, required for maintaining integrity of blood vessels, skin, organs, and bones. Regular consumption of foods rich in vitamin C helps the body protect from scurvy, develop resistance against viral infections, boosting of immunity, wound healing and to scavenge cancer causing harmful free radicals from the body.
  • In addition, the root contains moderate levels of some of valuable B-complex group of vitamins such as pyridoxine (vitamin B-6), folates, niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, and thiamin. Pyridoxine (vitamin B-6) acts as a coenzyme in the neuro-chemical synthesis in the brain which influences mood. Adequate pyridoxine levels help control nervous irritability, headache, and tension. It also cuts heart-attack risk by controlling harmful homocysteine levels in the blood.
  • Further, the root provides healthy amounts of some important minerals like copper, iron, zinc, magnesium, and manganese. Copper is a cofactor for many vital enzymes, including cytochrome c-oxidase and superoxide dismutase (other minerals function as cofactors for this enzyme are manganese and zinc). Along with iron, it is also required in the production of red blood cells.
  • Crunchy, neutral yet delicate flavor of root lotus is because of its optimum electrolyte balance. It composes agreeable ratio of sodium to potassium at the value 1:4. While sodium gives sweet taste to the root, potassium acts to counter negative effects of sodium by regulating heart rate and blood pressure.Ref.http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/lotus-root.html

Selection and storage

Lotus root (renkon) harvest begins by August and last until fall. Traditionally, farmers sink thier legs in knee-deep ponds and try to feel for the rhizome guiding their toes, which are then dug out by hand. Southeastern region of China and lake Kasumigaura in Ibaraki prefecture in Japan are known for renkon production.

From a distance, lotus rhizomes appear as big size bananas arranged in sausage pattern. While buying, look for clean, firm roots with smooth unblemished skin. Fresh roots are readily available year-round in major cities in the USA. One can also buy sliced, canned, and freeze-dried roots in the supermarkets or Japanese and other Asian stores.

Once at home, place the roots in cool, dark place away from humidity for 3-4 days. Uncut rhizomes can stay fresh for up to 2 weeks inside the refrigerator.

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.

Oats Dosas

Oats Dosa 1

Oats Dosa

Hi friends ! Doasas are crispy savory pancakes/ crepes from South India is a staple food in its home region. In entire country too, Dosas are hugely popular. Instant dosas always come handy when nothing is preplanned for breakfast. There are many instant version dosas, my oats dosa recipe is easier to make than you think ! The good thing about these dosas is that they are thin and crisp and are delicious and healthy for you.For complete range of various breakfast options do check out my recipe menu.

VARITIES OF DOSAS: There are more than hundred different varieties of Dosas in India with a brilliant blend of taste, flavors, nutritional balance and seasonings. Oats dosas are special Dosas in this catagory and make healthy, nutritious breakfast or  great all time snacks! There are many instant version dosas, my Oats Dosa recipe is easier to make than you think !This recipe of Oats dosa is simple, easy,instant and gluten-free recipe. Once tasted, will definitely become hot favorite!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup white oats, I used Quaker’s quick white oats
  • 1/2 cup rice flour
  • 1 carrot, finely grated
  • 1/2 cup yogurt , whisked well
  • 1 pinch asafetida
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 green chili, finely chopped
  • 2″ ginger piece,finely grated
  • 1 tsp salt / or salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp cilantro/ coriander, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • 2 level tsp ENO fruit salt,Regular / 1 small pouch
  • 3 tbsp Olive oil

Method:

Step 1.

Make fine powder of oats in a grinder, keep aside.

Step 2.

In a mixing bowl take the powdered oats, rice flour, salt, asafetida, cumin seeds  and whisked yogurt, mix the ingredients well. Gradually add water as needed to make batter consistency of dosa/ pancake mix. Set aside for about ten minutes.

Step 3.

Add green chilies, finely chopped cilantro /coriander, grated carrots, add  ENO fruit salt mix it well, batter will become little frothy.

Step 4.

Place a non-stick tava / griddle over medium flame. Grease the non-stick tava / griddle lightly. Test by sprinkling a few drops of water on it if water sizzles right away non-stick tava / griddle is ready for making dosa.

Step 5.

Pour a ladle full of the batter mixture onto the non-stick tava / griddle and spread evenly with the back of the ladle, about six to eight inches in diameter.

Step 6.

When the batter begins to dry a bit, gently pour one tsp of oil over and around it. Wait about 20 seconds, then flip the dosa using a spatula.

Step 7.

Press the dosa very gently with the spatula all around to ensure even cooking, when dosa is golden brown on both sides, fold it once with the help of spatula and slide it gently on a plate.

Step 8.

Repeat this process for the remaining dosas.

Step 9.

Serve oat dosa hot. The best accompaniments with the Oats Dosas are coriander/ coconut/ curry leaves or tomato chutney.

Note:

  • The key for the perfect and crisp lacy dosas lies in the consistency of batter, so please stick to the measurements provided in the recipe.
  • Mix the batter well before use.
  • The tawa / griddle used to prepare dosas, preferable should be flat an iron or non-stick tawas work best, use a properly heated tawa /griddle ( not cold , not too hot) for best results.
  • For the instant dosas pour the batter mixture onto the tawa / griddle and spread in a circular way evenly with the back of a ladle, about six-eight inches in diameter.
  • Dosas are best when eaten hot. Cold Dosas turn soggy and become slightly sticky.
  • For complete range of various chutney options do check out my recipe menu.
The Benefits of Eating Oatmeal Every Morning :
Whole Grain

Oatmeal is a whole grain, and eating whole grains can lower your risk for several diseases, including high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. Oatmeal also contains lignans, a plant chemical that has been found to prevent heart disease. The food label on your package of oats should list one ingredient: whole grain oats. Avoid prepackaged oatmeal that may be high in both sodium and sugar and lower in beneficial fiber. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010 recommends eating whole grains to reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. In addition, whole grains such as oats are a source of iron, magnesium and B vitamins.

Lower Cholesterol

Eating oatmeal can lower your cholesterol, especially your LDL, or “bad” cholesterol. If you’ve been diagnosed with high cholesterol, consider adding oatmeal to your daily menu. MayoClinic.com even recommends oatmeal as one of the top five foods to eat to improve your cholesterol numbers.

Lower Weight

Oatmeal is a source of fiber. That means when you eat oats for breakfast, you’re going to feel full for a long time. Breakfast foods high in sugar and fat can make you feel full for a brief period, but then you’re hungry again. A breakfast smoothie, consisting of blended oats, fruit and ice, can satisfy your hunger easily until lunch.

Oatmeal Options

If you’ve tried oatmeal before and didn’t like it, reconsider. Combining fruit or nuts with your oats while they’re cooking adds more nutrients. Spices like cinnamon and nutmeg give great flavor to your oats. Limit any sugars and let the natural flavor of the fruits and spices take over. Blend your oats with different fruits into a healthy oatmeal smoothie. Because oatmeal is such a beneficial food, try to find a different way to eat it every day.

 

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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Broccoli Salad

Brocolli salad.JPGBroccoli Salad

Preparation Time : 10 minutes

Cooking time : 10 minutes

Cuisine: Fusion

Course: Salads

Level Of Cooking: Easy

Servings : 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 small head Broccoli
  • 1 small size potato boiled and cut into tiny cubes
  • 1/2 cup walnut kernels
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp Dijon’s mustard paste
  • 1/2 tsp salt / or Salt to taste
  • 6 cloves Garlic , crushed
  • 4tbsp extra virgin Olive oil
  • 1 tsp apple cider/ Vinegar
  • 1 tsp red chili flakes
  • 1 1/2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 2 tbsp Sesame/ Til seeds , toasted

Method :

Step 1.

Remove the broccoli florets keeping the stems . Cut each floret vertically into halves.

Step 2.

Boil 4 cups water in a pan, add broccoli florets and salt , leave the florets in hot water foe 5-7 minutes.

Step 3.

Remove the broccoli florets from the hot water and refresh in ice cold water. Drain the water and keep the florets aside .

Step 4.

Take walnuts in a small microwave proof bowl, add 1 cup of water. Microwave it for two minutes. Take out keep aside to cool.

Step 5.

Take a boiled potato, cut it into tiny cubes, keep aside.

Step 6.

For the salad dressing, take extra virgin olive oil in a mixing bowl, add crushed garlic cloves, apple cider/or vinegar, salt, sugar, mustard paste, fresh lime juice and red chili flakes and mix well.

Step 7.

In a mixing bowl take broccoli florets, potato cubes, walnut kernels and add the prepared salad dressing and mix well.

Step 8.

Transfer the salad into a serving bowl. Just before serving sprinkle toasted sesame seeds on top and serve .

two heads of broccoliBroccoli belongs to the cruciferous vegetable family, which includes kale, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, bok choy, cabbage, collard greens, rutabaga and turnips. These nutrition powerhouses supply loads of nutrients for little calories.

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Baigan/Brinjal / Aubergines Stir fry

Brinjal Fry AndhranBrinjal / Aubergines Stir fry

Cooking With Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplants:

Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant  is a vegetable that can be prepared in a variety of ways. It is excellent when grilled, stuffed, roasted, sautéed, puréed or served in soups or stews. It can also be used to make curries, stir-fries and kababs. Eggplants offer endless possibilities to try something different this year and in years to come. Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplants offer endless possibilities to try something different now and in future too. Naturally low in calories, fat and sodium, Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant is also high in fiber and an excellent source of potassium, as well as folic acid, copper, vitamin B6, vitamin A, and magnesium.

Hi friends !

If you can’t remember the last time you ate Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant, this is the season for something new. As a gardener, be adventurous. Grow a new variety in your garden. As a chef, be creative. Try my new simple yet delicious recipe Brinjal / Aubergines Stir fry for your table.

Preparation Time : 5-6 minutes

Cooking time : 15-20 minutes

Cuisine: Indian, Andhra pradesh

Course: Main, Vegetables

Cooking Level : Easy

Servings : 4

 Ingredients:

500 gms. Long Brinjals, Cut into Vertically Long Pieces

1/4 tsp Turmeric

2/3 tsp Salt

For masala / Paruppu podi :

2 tsp Coriander powder

1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds

1/2 tsp Fenugreek Seeds

2 Red Chilies, whole

2 tsp black gram dal / udad dal

2 tsp Chana Dal/ bengal gram dal

3 tbsp Olive Oil or / any cooking oil of choice

Method:

Step 1.

Heat1/2 Tea Spoon of Oil in a pan and fry White Gram, Chana Dal, Coriander Seeds, Cumin Seeds, Fenugreek Seeds, Red Chilies. Transfer the mixture into a tissue paper for the oil to get absorbed.

Step 2.

Grind this mixture to powder and keep it aside for use later.

Step 3.

Add remaining oil in a fresh pan. Add cut long pieces of Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant to the hot oil and let it cook covered on low flame. Stirring it at a regular intervals.

Step 4.

After the Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant is half cooked add Turmeric and Salt.

Step 5.

After a few minutes add the masala /ground powder/ Paruppu podi .Cook for 5-6 minutes more, switch off the stove.

Step 6.

Serve hot with steamed rice or Indian breads of choice !

Some tips for cooking Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant for the new chefs :

Use good varieties that have been developed of Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant for good flavor.

The Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant’s flesh discolors fast after being cut so it should be used right away. If you want to cook little later cut Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant slices / pieces can be lightly sprinkled with lemon juice to help prevent browning. Also, slice eggplant with a stainless steel knife to avoid blackening.

Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant is more than 90% water, the larger fruits also tend to release water when cooked. We can reduce the excess moisture by marinating the slices or cubes of Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant with salt for 1-2 hours. Drain, rinse thoroughly to prevent excessive saltiness, and pat dry on a kitchen towel before using.

When deep-frying or pan-frying eggplant for the first time note that it absorbs high level of oil. To avoid excessive absorption of oil by the Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant prior to frying, the pieces / slices can be coated with bread crumbs or a flour.

Health benefits of Brinjals / Aubergines /Eggplant :

Consuming fruits and vegetables of all kinds has long been associated with a reduced risk of many lifestyle-related health conditions. Many studies have suggested that increasing consumption of plant foods like the eggplant decreases the risk of obesity and overall mortality, diabetes, heart disease and promotes a healthy complexion and hair, increased energy and overall lower weight.

Heart health

The fiber, potassium, vitamin C, vitamin B-6, and phytonutrient content in eggplants all support heart health. According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, eating foods containing flavonoids is affiliated with a lower risk of mortality from heart disease. Consuming even small quantities of flavonoid-rich foods may benefit human health.2

Several studies show that consumption of the flavonoids known as anthocyanins has played a major role in lowering risk of cardiovascular disease. One particular study revealed that those who consumed more than three servings of fruits and vegetables per week containing anthocyanins had 34% less risk of heart disease than those who consumed less. In another clinical study, researchers found that increased intake of anthocyanins was associated with significantly lower blood pressure.

Blood cholesterol

Research on the effects of eggplant consumption in animal studies has shown that rabbits with high cholesterol that consumed eggplant juice displayed a significant decrease in weight and blood cholesterol levels.5

Laboratory analyses of the phenolic compounds in eggplant reveal that the vegetable contains significant amounts of chlorogenic acid, which is one of the most powerful free radical scavengers found in plants. Chlorogenic acid has been shown to decrease LDL levels, and also serves as an antimicrobial, antiviral, and anticarcinogenic agent.4

Cancer

Polyphenols in eggplant have been found to exhibit anti-cancer effects. Anthocyanins and chlorogenic acid function as antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds. They protect body cells from damage caused by free radicals and in turn prevent tumor growth and invasion and spread of cancer cells. They also stimulate detoxifying enzymes within cells and promote cancer cell death.3

Cognitive function

Findings from animal studies suggest that nasunin, an anthocyanin within eggplant skin, is a powerful antioxidant that protects the lipids comprising cell membranes in brain cells from free radical damage. It has also been proven to help facilitate the transport of nutrients into the cell and wastes out.6

Research has also shown that anthocyanins inhibit neuroinflammation and facilitate blood flow to the brain. This helps prevent age-related mental disorders and also improves memory.

Ref.http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/279359.php#possible_health_benefits_of_consuming_eggplant

 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.

 

Gram Flour/Besan Uttpam

Besan Dosa with cheese 1

Gram Flour / Besan Uttapam

Gram flour, also known as garbanzo bean flour, chickpea flour, or besan, is a pulse flour made from ground chickpeas. Used in many countries, it is a staple ingredient in Indian, Pakistani, Nepali and Bangladeshi cuisines.

Hi friends! Gram Flour / Besan Uttapam is a tasty dish for breakfast or as a snack. This recipe is easy and quick to prepare and can be served with coriander / cilantro chutney. It is a favorite dish of the family for breakfast, folded with cheese.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup gram flour / besan
  • 150 gms fresh cottage cheese / paneer, grated
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 level tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp Ajwain / Carom seeds
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tbsp cilantro / coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • 6 tbsp of oil to cook

Method:

Step 1.

Grate the the cottage cheese/ paneer and keep aside.

Step 2.

In a mixing bowl take Gram Flour / Besan, rice flour , add salt, baking soda, carom seeds, coriander powder, red chili powder slowly add water mix to make a smooth batter. The mix consistency of pancake batter or Dosa batter.

Step 3.

Take  a non-stick pan /tava and place on medium flame. To check the heat level required, test by sprinkling a few drops of water on it. Water should sizzle right away.

Step 4.

Pour about 1 ladle of the batter onto non- stick pan / tava stick and spread evenly with a back of ladle. Starting from the center, with spiral movement spread the batter outward evenly to form a circle about 6″ in diameter.

Step 5.

Immediately after spreading the batter onto non-stick pan /tava , spread evenly two tbsp grated cottage cheese/ paneer, 1 tsp finely chopped cilantro / coriander leaves on the dosa.

Step 6.

When batter starts to dry a little, slowly spread little cooking oil over and around it. After 30 seconds; flip the uttpam using a flat spatula. Press the uttpam lightly all around with the spatula to make the cheese and uttpam cook evenly until crisp and golden brown on both sides.

Step 7.

Repeat the process for the remaining uttpam. Serve uttpam hot with cilantro / dhania / coriander chutney.

Note:

Quick spread of the batter on hot non-stick pan / tava, will make the spreading easier and will give better results.

Health benefits of Besan/ gram flour:

Besan flour, or gram flour, may not sound familiar until you hear its third name: chickpea flour. The characteristic nutty flavor from finely ground chickpeas gives besan flour the ability to create tasty, simple breads that stand on their own with few ingredients. It also stands above wheat flour in protein and folate content.

Basics

Besan flour is naturally higher in protein than wheat-based flours. One-half cup contains 10 grams of protein, compared to 8 grams in whole-grain wheat flour and just 6 grams in white flour. One-half cup of besan flour has 178 calories and 3 grams of total fat. Even though that’s double the fat of whole-wheat flour, 70 percent of the fat in besan flour comes from healthy unsaturated fats that can lower cholesterol. The same portion has 5 grams of fiber.

Vitamins

One-half cup of besan flour has 201 micrograms of folate, compared to 26 micrograms in whole-wheat flour and 182 micrograms in enriched white flour. If you consumed an entire half-cup of besan flour, you’d get 50 percent of the recommended daily intake of folate. This important vitamin is critical for the production of proteins and genetic material. In this role, folate is especially important during periods of rapid growth. When taken before and during pregnancy, it helps prevent birth defects of the brain and spinal cord. The same portion of besan flour is a good source of thiamin and vitamin B-6. Thiamin converts food into energy, while vitamin B-6 is needed for the synthesis of red blood cells and the neurotransmitter serotonin that regulates appetite and mood.

Minerals

Besan flour delivers a boost of iron, magnesium and phosphorus. Well known for its role carrying oxygen, iron also functions as an antioxidant and it’s needed for the production of collagen. Magnesium causes muscles to relax, which helps maintain vascular health and regulates blood pressure. Phosphorus combines with calcium to form the primary compound used to build bones. It also carries lipids through the body and activates enzymes that produce energy. One-half cup of besan flour has 2 milligrams of iron, 76 milligrams of magnesium and 146 milligrams of phosphorus.

Preparation Tips

Besan flour is usually mixed with water, olive oil, yogurt or milk to make a paste that can be any consistency depending on the desired use. The paste is seasoned with any combination of parsley, cumin, coriander, turmeric, red chili, rosemary, onion or garlic. It’s traditionally cooked in a skillet to create a flatbread called socca or fried into fritters. Use a thick besan flour batter to coat and fry vegetables or add small shrimps to a thin batter and fry them into appetizer-like pancakes.

Gluten Free

Besan flour doesn’t contain gluten, so it makes a good substitute for wheat flour in gluten-free diets. Depending on the food you’re making, the bean taste may not create the best result. Try mixing besan flour with white rice flour, making sure that the total amount is the same that’s called for in the recipe. You’ll probably need to adjust the fluids to create the same consistency achieved with wheat flour. If you’re making yeast dough, you’ll need to add about 1 teaspoon of guar or xanthan gum for every 1 cup of flour so that the yeast can rise.

Ref. http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/nutrient-besan-flour-3167.html

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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Stuffed Bitter gourd /Karela -2

Bitter gourd stuffed 2Stuffed Bitter gourd /Karela -2

bitter-melons in a vine

Bitter gourd /Bitter melon / Karela is one of popular edible pod vegetable in many Asian countries. It is grown widely as a field crop as well as backyard vegetable and, in fact, is among the most bitter tasting of all culinary vegetables.bitter-melons in a vine. Bitter gourds hanging down in a vine. This variety commonly found in Indian subcontinent. Noted for pointed ends. Bitter melon is a temperate/tropical vegetable probably originated in South-East Asia. Like in other members of the Cucurbitaceae family, it too is a fast-growing, trailing or climbing vine with thin stems and tendrils which require trellis to support their climbing vines.Bitter gourd pods are characterized with soft lengthwise ridges and uneven pebbly surface. Depending up on the cultivar type, its immature pods can be light to dark green and have oblong or oval shapes with a pointed tip at the blossom end. Internally, the flesh is white with rough edged seeds, somewhat similar to ridge gourd seeds in appearance. As the fruits begin to mature, they gradually become hard, turn yellow or brown in color.

Hi friends! Bitter gourd / Karelas stuffed with fresh Indian spices is irresistible. The spicy onion masala stuffing works wonders with Bitter gourd / Karelas. The stuffed Bitter gourd / Karelas are best enjoyed with Indian breads.

Preparation Time: 30 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes Approx.

Servings : 3

Level Of Cooking : Easy

Cuisine: Indian

Course: Main Course-Veg

Ingredients:
6 medium sized bitter gourd /karela

  • For stuffing the bitter gourd / Karela :
  • 2 big onions, finely grated
  • 1 level tsp salt / or as per taste
  • 1 tsp  cumin seeds /jeera roasted and powdered
  • 2 tbsp coriander /dhania powder
  • 2 tbsp Fennel seeds, powdered
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder /haldi
  • 1/2 tsp Red chili powder
  • 1 tbsp dried mango powder /amchur
  • 2 tbsp Mustard oil / or any other cooking oil

For Serving the bitter gourd / Karela :

  • 2 medium size onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 medium size tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 2 tbsp mustard oil / or any other cooking oil

Method :

Step 1.

Wash and with a peeler peel the bitter gourd / Karelas and keep the peel / scrapings aside for using later.

Step 2.

In boiling, water add 1 tbsp salt and put the bitter gourd / Karelas in it. When the bitter gourd / Karelas become a bit softer take them out of the water.

Step 3.

Let the bitter gourd / Karelas cool. With a sharp knife. Slit each bitter gourd / Karela length wise on one side,  if the seeds are big scoop out and discard them.

Step 4.

Mix wheat flour, little turmeric powder and salt apply the mixture inside and out side of the bitter gourd / Karelas and keep asides for 1/2 hour. This will reduce the bitterness of the bitter gourd / Karelas.

Step 5.

For preparing the masala for stuffing the bitter gourd / Karelas:

Heat oil, add grated onions, salt, turmeric, roasted cumin powder, red chili powder, coriander powder and dry mango powder/amchur and cook on low flame till light golden brown.

Step 6.

Take out the mixture from the pan in some other container and let it cool. Stuff this well cooked masala tightly in each bitter gourd / karela. Tie thread all around the bitter gourd / karelas so that the mixture doesn’t comes out from the slit. keep aside.

Step 7.

In a pan take 3 tbsp of oil and heat it. Slide gently all the stuffed bitter gourd /karelas in the pan and fry it on low flame, keep turning the bitter gourd / karelas at regular intervals till it is golden brown. Cover and cook for few minutes.

Step 8.

For Serving the bitter gourd / Karela :

Step 9.

Heat the mustard oil in a non-stick pan add sliced onions, sauté till turns translucent.

Step 10.

Add the tomatoes, bitter gourd scrapings, turmeric powder, red chili powder dry mango powder, salt and coriander and mix well.

Step11.

Sauté till the mixture leaves oil and keep aside. Take out this well cooked mixture in a serving dish and place the stuffed cooked bitter gourd / karelas on this mixture after removing the threads.

Step 12.

Serve hot with any Indian bread of your choice like chapatti, paranthas etc.

Health benefits of Bitter gourd / Karela (Bitter melon) :

  • Bitter melon is very low in calories, carrying just 17 calories per 100 g. Nevertheless, its pods are rich sources of phytonutrients like dietary fiber, minerals, vitamins and anti-oxidants.
  • Bitter melon notably contains phyto-nutrient, polypeptide-P, a plant insulin known to lower blood sugar levels. In addition, it composes hypoglycemic agent called charantin. Charantin increases glucose uptake and glycogen synthesis inside the cells of liver, muscle and adipose tissue. Together, these compounds may have been thought to be responsible for blood sugar levels reduction in the treatment of type-2 diabetes.
  • Fresh pods are an excellent source of folates, carrying about 72 µg/100g (18% of RDA). Vitamin folate when taken by mothers during their early pregnancy time, would help reduce the incidence of neural tube defects in the newborn babies.
  • Fresh bitter melon is an excellent source of vitamin-C (100 g of raw pod provides 84 mg or about 140% of RDI). Vitamin-C is one of the powerful natural antioxidants which helps scavenge deleterious free radicals from the human body.
  • Further, it is an excellent source of health benefiting flavonoids such as ß-carotene, a-carotene, lutein, and zea-xanthin. It also contains a good amount of vitamin-A. Together, these compounds help act as protective scavengers against oxygen-derived free radicals and reactive oxygen species (ROS) that play a role in aging, cancers and various disease processes.
  • Bitter melon stimulates easy digestion and peristalsis of food through the bowel until it is excreted from the body. Thus, it helps in relieving indigestion and constipation problems.
  • In addition, it is a moderate source of B-complex vitamins such as niacin (vitamin B-3), pantothenic acid (vitamin B-5), pyridoxine (vitamin B-6) and minerals such as iron, zinc, potassium, manganese and magnesium.
  • Early laboratory tests suggest that certain phyto-chemical compounds in bitter melon might be effective in the treatment of HIV infection.

Ref. http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/bitter-gourd.html
Note:

Bitter gourd / karelas may contain alkaloid substances like quinine and morodicine, resins and saponic glycosides, which may be cause intolerance in some people. Their bitterness and toxicity may be reduced somewhat by parboiling or soaking in salt water for upto 10 -30 minutes.

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.

Chaulai Bhurji /Amaranth Greens

Amaranth greenChaulai Bhurji /Amaranth Greens

Hi friends! Today I am going to share an extremely nutritious  recipe of Chaulai Bhurji /Amaranth Greens. It has a salty flavor, learn how to make delicious and very easy Chaulai Bhurji/ Amaranth Greens by following the easy steps.

Amaranth, tender-: Amaranthus gangeticus

Names in other Indian Languages: Notya (Bengali) , Chaulai sag (Hindi) , Dantu (Kannada) , Cheera (Malayalam) , Math (Marathi), Thandukeerai (Tamil) , Thotakoora (Telugu)

The word ‘Amaranth’ is derived from the Greek term ‘amarantos’ meaning ‘unwithering’. The term was applied to Amaranth for its hearty characteristics that for the people that used it, came to symbolize immortality. The Hindi term for Amaranth, Ramdana, means God’s own grain. This bountiful seed is grown all throughout India from the high slopes of the Himalayas to the many coastlines of the country. Numerous different Amaranth varieties are grown throughout the country, but the Himalaya region is known as the Amaranth ‘centre for diversity’ for the number of varieties that grow in the region. This crop is also a native species to the Andean region of South America, including Argentina, Peru and Bolivia. In the Andes region it remains widely grown today. This crop has been called ‘Incan Wheat’ because it was a staple food for the Incas, but was used long before this time. Today the grain often goes by the name kiwicha. In North America/Europe where this crop is sometimes sold, it occasionally goes by the name ‘love-lies-bleeding’ due to its bright, fluorescent colour ranges.

Amaranth is a hardy crop, high in fiber. Using amaranth in combination with wheat, corn or brown rice results in a complete protein level as high as the value found in fish, red meat, or poultry. The grain is very easy for the body to digest and so is traditionally eaten during fasts, and given to those who are recovering from illness. Amaranth is consumed as both a vegetable and a grain. The leaves of the plant are frequently used in countries throughout Africa, the Caribbean, China and even Greece in various dishes and stir-frys. In China, it is believed that eating Amaranth greens are great for improving eye sight, and in countries throughout Africa it is recommended by doctors for people with low red blood cell count. The Hills People in India believe they get their strength from the daily consumption of this super grain! Commonly, the grain is popped before it is consumed which is often made into gruel called sattu or laddoos. The grain can further be ground into flour and mixed with other types of flours to make everyday staples like chapatti.

While amaranth may be known as a ‘forgotten food grain’ its taste and exceptional health benefits recognized around the world make it a grain that is still prominent in the lives of people in many different places and should not be soon forgotten!

Ref. http://seedfreedom.in/amaranth-a-himalayan-treasure/

Prep Time:10 minutes

Cook Time :20 minutes

Recipe cook time : 25 minutes

Course : Main

Cuisine : Indian, Uttar Pradesh

Serves : 4

Ingredients

  • 500 gms.Chaulai  /Amaranth Greens
  • 1/2 tsp of turmeric
  • 2 medium size Onions ,finely chopped
  • 1 Green chili, finely chopped
  • 12 Cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 level tsp Salt/ or salt to taste
  • 3 tbsp Olive Oil or any cooking oil of choice

Method :

Step 1.

Wash and soak in cold water with a pinch of salt for ten minutes.

Step 2.

Drain and finely chop the Chaulai  /Amaranth Greens, keep aside.

Step 3.

Heat oil in a wok /Kadahi /pan, add chopped onions and fry till light golden, add finely chopped garlic saute for twenty seconds or so.

Step 4.

Add  turmeric, chili powder, salt and chopped Chaulai  /Amaranth Greens, stir and cook on low heat till the water dries.

Step 5.

Then fry for a few minutes and remove from heat.Serve with hot chapatti, boiled rice etc.

Note:

Do not add any water to chopped Chaulai  /Amaranth Greens while cooking.

Health benefits of Cholai or Chaulai or Amaranth leaves

– Good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, and folate,thiamine, niacin, and riboflavin

– Good source of minerals eg calcium, iron, potassium, zinc, copper, and manganese

– Regular consumption reduces blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

– Improve antioxidant level.

– Strengthen immunity.

– Saag form helps to cure constipation.

– Blood purifier.

– Drinking 15-20 gm cholai juice reduces swelling in eyes due to heat, reddishness and improves eyesight.

– Mix 25 ml Cholai juice with misri and drink to reduce burning sensation in urine and calm down body heat.

– Drinking Cholai juice purifies blood and removes toxic substances from the body.

Ref. http://www.bimbima.com/health/post/2012/09/18/health-benefits-of-cholai-or-chaulai-or-amaranth.aspx

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.

Brinjal /Aubergines fry

Brijal fryBrinjal /Aubergines fry

The scientific name of brinjal/ aubergine is “Solanum melongena” and is a member of nightshade family. It is a member of the genus Solanum which is related to both potato and tomato. Brinjal is also called as Egg plant because it is named by Europe farmers in 18th century as they  actually look like white and yellowish goose or hen eggs, hence it is named as Egg plant. It is believed that brinjal is originated in Indo- Burma region and is distributed in south East Asia, southern Europe, China and Japan.

Brinjal /Aubergine is a common vegetable that is grown in all most all parts of India. It comes in different varieties of colors like yellow, green, dark purple, reddish purple and white. It tastes good when it is cooked or fried rather than eating it raw because the raw fruit somewhat tastes bitter. It is used in some of the Ayurvedic medicines due to its medicinal properties also extremely advantageous through the health perspectives.

Hi friends! here is a simple easy and delicious recipe to add on to the Vegetarian main course.

 Preparation Time : 10 minutes

Cooking time : 15 minutes

Servings : 4

Cuisine: Indian

Course: Main

Level Of Cooking: Easy

Ingredients:

  • 300 gms long purple Brinjal, cut into long thick strips
  • 1 medium size potato, peeled, cut into long strips
  • 1 medium size Onion, cut into Slices
  • 1/2 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida / heeng
  • 1/2 tsp Bengal Gram dal
  • 1/2 tsp Black gram dal
  • 1/4 tsp Red Chili powder
  • a small pinch Turmeric powder
  • 2 sprigs Curry leaves
  • 1/2 level tsp Salt
  • 1 tbsp Olive oil /cooking Oil
  • To be mixed into a marinade:
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder (haldi)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp oil

Method:

Step 1.

Combine the brinjals /Aubergines thick strips with the prepared marinade and toss gently. Keep aside for 15 minutes.

Step 2.

Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan / wok / kadahi and add mustard seeds.

Step 3.

When mustard seeds start crackling , add cumin seeds and dals. Fry for a few seconds until the dals turn light golden brown in colour, add the curry leaves.

Step 4.

To the step two seasoning add cut potatoes strips, marinated brinjals /Aubergines and turmeric powder, chili powder , salt and mix well.

Step 5.

Cover and cook vegetables on low flame till soft and well cooked. Switch off the stove and transfer the contents to a serving bowl .

Step 6.

Garnish with coriander and serve hot with steaming boiled rice or Indian bread rotis.

Health benefits of Brinjals / Aubergines:

Brinjals /Aubergines , known as baingan in Hindi, is known to be king of vegetables.  High on nutrients, this vegetable has many health benefits and hence, it should consumed at least once a week. Although a lot of people don’t like the taste, if cooked well, it can be extremely delicious. Here is why this vegetable should be on list of groceries the next time you shop for vegetables.

Prevent cancer

Fibre and antioxidants are just two of the nutrients that make Brinjal /Aubergine a food that can keep cancer at bay. Fibre helps clear the toxins present in your digestive tract and has been found useful in the prevention of colon cancer. Additionally, the antioxidants help in fighting free radical damage to your cells which helps keep cancer at bay.

Great for weight loss

Brinjal /Aubergine are great for weight loss as they are low in calories with 100g of the vegetable containing just 25 calories. It is also rich in fibre which helps in promoting the feeling of satiety which means that eating a small serving will make you feel full and prevent you from overeating.

Prevent heart disease

Like most fruits and vegetables, Brinjal /Aubergine too are great for your heart. Being rich in fiber, potassium, vitamin B-6 and phytonutrients like flavonoids, this vegetable lowers the risk of heart disease. The presence of antioxidants keeps your arteries healthy and prevents heart attack.

Controls blood pressure

Brinjal /Aubergine contains potassium, an important mineral, which plays a key role in maintaining electrolyte balance in the body. It also helps in neutralizing the effects of sodium on the body thereby aiding in blood pressure control. Apart from this, increased intake of anthocyanins that are present in high amounts in brinjal /Aubergine, also lowers your blood pressure.

Good for diabetics

As brinjal /Aubergine are low in carbohydrates and high in fiber content, they are known to be good for people suffering from diabetes. This is because, the high fiber causes helps in controlling blood sugar levels in the body by controlling the absorption of glucose from food.

Lowers cholesterol in the body

Brinjal /Aubergine is rich in chlorogenic acid that acts as a powerful antioxidant agent, lowering cholesterol levels in the body.  It also contains high amounts of fiber that increases the absorption of blood cholesterol by the liver to produce bile.

Gives your skin a natural glow

As we age, our skin undergoes free radical damage which can cause the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines on our faces. The antioxidants and vitamins present in brinjals /Aubergines can prevent this from happening. Additionally, it is also high in water which flushes toxins from your body and gives your skin a nice and healthy glow.

Good for your brain

Eating brinjals can prevent brain damage as it contains phytonutrients that can protect your cell membranes. These phytonutrients are also known to boost memory function and aid in transferring messages from one part of your body to another.

Help you to quit smoking

Apart from these benefits, brinjal /Aubergine is also known to have small quantity of nicotine and thus helps in quitting tobacco.

Tips you should follow while incorporating brinjal /Aubergine in your diet:

  • Instead of metal knife, use a stainless steel knife to cut the vegetable as it prevents the chemical reaction between pytochemicals present in brinjal /Aubergine and metal.
  • As you cut brinjal /Aubergine, put them in salt water or sprinkle salt over the pieces. This removes the compounds that render bitter taste to the vegetable. It also makes your dish more tasty and palatable.
  • Brinjal /Aubergine can be added to any dishes like sambhar, pizza or pasta or can be consumed even in fried, baked, sauteed, grilled, roasted or in steamed form.

Ref. http://www.thehealthsite.com/fitness/health-benefits-of-brinjal-baingan/?gclid=CjwKEAjw_MisBRCTuNPfoMqU4ngSJACrJv1V1wHMItH-2DzS-hzF_J6DV3lyJebwMXxWUk1A_auePRoCFzvw_wcB

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.

Kala Namak / Black Salt

Kala Namak / Black Salt

Whole Kala Namak salt crystals

Kala Namak or Himalayan Black Salt (Urdu کالا نمک; Bengali Biit lobon (বিট লবণ); Newari Be Chi; Nepali Birae Nun (बिरे नुन) ; Hindi काला नमक   Marathi काळं मीठ ;kālā namak; Gujarati સંચળ Sanchal; Tamil இந்துப்பு; Malayalam ഇന്തുപ്പ്) also known as sulemani namak, black salt, or kala loon, is a type of rock salt, salty and pungent-smelling condiment used in South Asia. The condiment is composed largely of sodium chloride with several other components lending the salt its colour and smell. The smell is mainly due to its sulphur content. Due to the presence of Greigite (Fe3S4, Iron(II,III) sulfide) in the mineral, it forms brownish pink to dark violet translucent crystals when whole, and, when ground into a powder, it is light purple to pink in color.

Production

The raw material for producing kala namak was originally obtained from natural halite from mines in Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan in certain locations of the Himalayas salt ranges, or from salt harvested from the North Indian salt lakes of Sambhar or Didwana and Mustang of Nepal

Traditionally, the salt was transformed from its raw natural forms into commercially sold kala namak through a reductive chemical process that transforms some of the naturally occurring sodium sulphate of the raw salt into pungent hydrogen sulfide and sodium sulfide. This involves firing the raw salts in a furnace for 24 hours while sealed in a ceramic jar with charcoal along with small quantities of harad seeds, aamla, bahera, babul bark, or Sajji. The fired salt is then cooled, stored, and aged prior to sale. Kala namak is prepared in this manner in Northern India with production concentrated in the Hisar district, Haryana. The salt crystals appear black in colour, and are usually ground to a fine powder which is pink in colour.

Although the kala namak can be produced from natural salts with the required compounds, it is common to now manufacture it synthetically. This is done through combining ordinary sodium chloride admixed with smaller quantities of sodium sulphate, sodium bisulphate and ferric sulphate, which is then chemically reduced with charcoal in a furnace. Reportedly, it is also possible to create similar products through reductive heat treatment of sodium chloride, 5-10 percent of sodium carbonate, sodium sulphate, and some sugar.

Composition

Kala namak consists primarily of sodium chloride and trace impurities of sodium sulphate, sodium bisulfate, sodium bisulfite, sodium sulphide, iron sulfide and hydrogen sulfide.

Sodium chloride provides kala namak with its salty taste, iron sulphide provides its dark violet hue, and all the sulphur compounds give kala namak its slight savory taste as well as a highly distinctive smell, with hydrogen sulphide being the most prominent contributor to the smell. The acidic bisulfates/bisulfites contribute a mildly sour taste. Although hydrogen sulphide is toxic in high concentrations, the amount present in kala namak used in food is small and thus its effects on health are negligible: Hydrogen sulphide is also one of the components of the odor of rotten eggs and boiled milk.

Indian Black Salt

Indian black salt has been used as a condiment for many hundreds of years in Asian countries surrounding the Himalayan mountains. It was originally obtained from either natural volcanic mines in Northern India and Pakistan or the surrounding salt lakes of Sambhar or Didwana.

Potential Health Benefits

Indian black salt is considered a cooling spice in ayurvedic medicine and is recommended for many health issues such as constipation, indigestion, heartburn, bloating, flatulence, goiter, poor eyesight and hysteria, according to the book “Herbs that Heal.” In India, black salt is sometimes recommended to people on low-salt diets due to hypertension because it’s believed to be lower in sodium content compared to regular table salt. Of course, the composition of Indian black salt varies quite a bit and depends mainly on whether it’s manufactured using traditional or modern techniques. Synthetically made black salt has a sodium content very near to regular table salt. Discuss your salt options with your doctor if you have high blood pressure.

Uses

 

Kala Namak is used extensively in South Asian cuisines of Bangladesh, India and Pakistan as a condiment or added to chaats, chutneys, salads, all kinds of fruits, raitas and many other savory Indian snacks. Chaat masala, an Indian spice blend, is dependent upon black salt for its characteristic sulfurous hard-boiled egg aroma. Those who are not accustomed to black salt often describe the smell as similar to rotten eggs. Kala Namak is appreciated by some vegans in dishes that mimic the taste of eggs. It is used, for example, to season tofu to mimic an egg salad.

Kala Namak is considered a cooling spice in ayurvedic medicine and is used as a laxative and digestive aid. It is also believed to relieve intestinal gas and heartburn. It is used in Jammu to cure goiters. This salt is also used to treat hysteria, and for making toothpastes by combining it with other mineral and plant ingredients.

Cooking Benefits

Indian black salt is used extensively on Indian food, including chutneys, yogurts, pickles, salads and all kinds of fruits. It’s often appreciated by strict vegans because it mimics the taste of eggs in tofu and other vegetarian dishes. During the hot Indian summer months, it’s also sometimes used to flavor cool drinks, which is a practical way to replace sodium lost through excessive perspiration.

Ref. http://www.livestrong.com/article/557587-what-are-the-health-benefits-of-indian-black-salt/

Ref. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kala_Namak

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.

 

Sesame -Seeds

Sesamum indicum - Köhler–s Medizinal-Pflanzen-129.jpgSesamum indicum 2.jpg

Kingdom: Plantae      (unranked): Angiosperms  (unranked): Eudicots (unranked): Asterids

Order:   Lamiales Family: Pedaliaceae Genus: Sesamum Species: S. indicum

Sesame (/ˈsɛsəm/; Sesamum indicum) is a flowering plant in the genus Sesamum. Numerous wild relatives occur in Africa and a smaller number in India. It is widely naturalized in tropical regions around the world and is cultivated for its edible seeds, which grow in pods.

Sesame seed is one of the oldest oilseed crops known, domesticated well over 3000 years ago. Sesame has many species, most being wild and native to sub-Saharan Africa. Sesame Indicum, the cultivated type, originated in India. Sesame is highly tolerant to drought like conditions, and grows where other crops may fail.

Sesame has one of the highest oil contents of any seed. With a rich nutty flavor, it is a common ingredient in cuisines across the world. Like other nuts and foods, it can trigger allergic reactions in some people.

The world harvested about 4.8 million metric tonnes of sesame seeds in 2013.The largest producer of sesame seeds in 2013 was Myanmar.The world’s largest exporter of sesame seeds was India, and Japan the largest importer.

Flower of Sesamum indicum

Sesame in Panchkhal valley, Nepal

Magnified image of white sesame seeds

It is an annual plant growing 50 to 100 cm (1.6 to 3.3 ft) tall, with opposite leaves 4 to 14 cm (1.6 to 5.5 in) long with an entire margin; they are broad lanceolate, to 5 cm (2 in) broad, at the base of the plant, narrowing to just 1 cm (0.4 in) broad on the flowering stem.

The flowers are yellow, tubular, 3 to 5 cm (1.2 to 2.0 in) long, with a four-lobed mouth. The flowers may vary in colour with some being white, blue or purple.

Sesame fruit is a capsule, normally pubescent, rectangular in section and typically grooved with a short triangular beak. The length of the fruit capsule varies from 2 to 8 cm, its width varies between 0.5 to 2 cm, and the number of loculi from 4 to 12. The fruit naturally splits open (dehisces) to release the seeds by splitting along the septa from top to bottom or by means of two apical pores, depending on the varietal cultivar. The degree of dehiscence is of importance in breeding for mechanised harvesting as is the insertion height of the first capsule.

Sesame seeds are small. The size, form and colours vary with the thousands of varieties now known. Typically, the seeds are about 3 to 4 millimeters long by 2 millimeters wide and 1 millimeter thick. The seeds are ovate, slightly flattened and somewhat thinner at the eye of the seed (hilum) than at the opposite end. The weight of the seeds is between 20 and 40 milligrams. The seed coat (testa) may be smooth or ribbed.

Sesame seeds come in many colours depending on the cultivar harvested. The most traded variety of sesame is off-white coloured. Other common colours are buff, tan, gold, brown, reddish, gray and black.

Sesame seed is sometimes sold with its seed coat removed (decorticated). This is the variety often present on top of buns in developed economies.

Sesame seeds nutrition facts

One of the first oil seeds known to humankind, sesame seeds have been widely employed in culinary as well as traditional medicines for their nutritive, preventive, and curative properties. Sesame are an important sources of phyto-nutrients such as omega-6 fatty acids, flavonoid phenolic anti-oxidants, vitamins, and dietary fiber with potential anti-cancer as well as health promoting properties.

Sesame plant is a tall annual herb in the Pedaliaceae family, which grows extensively in Asia, particularly in Burma, China, and India. It is also one of the chief commercial crops in Nigeria, Sudan and Ethiopia. Scientific name: Sesamum indicum.

Sesame requires well-drained sandy soil and tropical environment to flourish. It grows about 5 feet in height and bears plenty of pink-white foxglove type flowers. The pods appear soon, containing white, brown, or black seeds depending upon the cultivar type, arranged in rows inside. Each pod (2-5 cm in length) is a long rectangular box like capsule with deep grooves on its sides. A single pod (1 to 2 inches in length) may contain up to 100 or more seeds.

Sesame seeds are small, almost oblate in shape. Toasted seeds feature pleasant, nutty flavoror.

Health benefits of sesame seeds

  • Flavorful, crunchy sesame seeds are widely considered healthy foods. 100 g of seeds carry 573 calories. Although, much of its calorie comes from fats, sesame contains several notable health-benefiting nutrients, minerals, antioxidants and vitamins that are essential for wellness.
  • The seeds are especially rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acid, oleic acid, which comprises up to 50% fatty acids in them. Oleic acid helps lower LDL or “bad cholesterol” and increases HDL or “good cholesterol” in the blood. Research studies suggest that Mediterranean diet which is rich in mono-unsaturated fats help prevent coronary artery disease, and stroke by favoring healthy lipid profile.
  • The seeds are also very valuable sources of dietary protein with fine quality amino acids that are essential for growth, especially in children. Just 100 g of seeds provide about 18 g of protein (32% of daily-recommended values).
  • In addition, sesame seeds contain many health benefiting compounds such as sesamol (3, 4-methylene-dioxyphenol), sesaminol, furyl-methanthiol, guajacol (2-methoxyphenol), phenylethanthiol and furaneol, vinylguacol, and decadienal. Sesamol and sesaminol are phenolic anti-oxidants. Together, these compounds help stave off harmful free radicals from the human body.
  • Sesame is among the seeds rich in quality vitamins, and minerals. They are very good sources of B-complex vitamins such as niacin, folic acid, thiamin (vitamin B1), pyridoxine (vitamin B6), and riboflavin.
  • 100 g of sesame contains 97 µg of folic acid, about 25% of recommended daily intake. Folic acid is essential for DNA synthesis. When given to expectant mothers during their peri-conception period, it may prevent neural tube defects in the newborns.
  • Niacin is another B-complex vitamin found abundantly in sesame. About 4.5 mg or 28% of daily-required levels of niacin is provided by just 100 g of seeds. Niacin helps reduce LDL-cholesterol levels in the blood. In addition, it enhances GABA activity inside the brain, which in turn helps reduce anxiety and neurosis.
  • The seeds are incredibly rich sources of many essential minerals. Calcium, iron, manganese, zinc, magnesium, selenium, and copper are especially concentrated in sesame seeds. Many of these minerals have a vital role in bone mineralization, red blood cell production, enzyme synthesis, hormone production, as well as regulation of cardiac and skeletal muscle activities.

Just a hand full of sesame a day provides enough recommended levels of phenolic anti-oxidants, minerals, vitamins and protein.

See the table below for in depth analysis of nutrients:Sesame seeds (Sesamum indicum), whole, dried,
Nutritional value per 100 g.
(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)

Principle Nutrient Value Percentage of RDA
Energy 573 Kcal 29%
Carbohydrates 23.45 g 18%
Protein 17.73 g 32%
Total Fat 49.67 g 166%
Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
Dietary Fiber 11.8 g 31%
Vitamins
Folates 97 µg 25%
Niacin 4.515 mg 28%
Pantothenic acid 0.050 mg 1%
Pyridoxine 0.790 mg 61%
Riboflavin 0.247 mg 19%
Thiamin 0.791 mg 66%
Vitamin A 9 IU <1%
Vitamin C 0 0%
Vitamin E 0.25 mg 2%
Electrolytes
Sodium 11 mg 1%
Potassium 468 mg 10%
Minerals
Calcium 975 mg 98%
Copper 4.082 mg 453%
Iron 14.55 mg 182%
Magnesium 351 mg 88%
Manganese 2.460 mg 107%
Phosphorus 629 mg 90%
Selenium 34.4 µg 62.5%
Zinc 7.75 mg 70%
Phyto-nutrients
Carotene-ß 5 µg
Crypto-xanthin-ß 0 µg
Lutein-zeaxanthin 0 µg

Selection and storage

Sesames can be readily available in the spice stores all around the year. You may choose from whole, husked or air-dried, toasted seeds in these stores. There may be black, brown, yellow or white color seeds packed in air-seal packs as well as in bulk bins. Husked seeds appear white.

Sesame composes significant proportions of unsaturated fats, and hence, should be stored in airtight containers to avoid them turn rancid. At home, place them in cool dark place. If stored properly, dry seeds generally stay fresh for several months. Store hulled “white” seeds always inside the refrigerator.

Avoid old, offensive smelling (rancid) seeds.

Culinary uses

Sesame seeds have a delicate nutty flavor. Their flavor indeed becomes more pronounced once they are gently roasted under low flame heat for a few minutes.

Sesame seeds are used liberally in cooking. The seeds ground with olive or any other vegetable oils to prepare semi-solid, flavorful paste, which is then added to different cuisine.

  • Dry, roasted sesame seeds and vegetable oil are ground into a thin light brown color paste known as tahini. Tahini is one of the main ingredients in famous middle-eastern dip, hummus.
  • Dry fried seeds sprinkled over toasts, biscuits, breads, cakes, salads, stir fries, etc.
  • The seeds are largely used in the manufacture of margarine in Europe.
  • The seeds are used in many traditional south-Indian sweet delicacies, often mixed with roasted peanuts, almonds, and jaggery.
  • Roasted and crushed seeds often sprinkled over salads, desserts, particularly sundaes and other cream based preparations.
  • Gomashio is a Japan’s specialty, which uses ground sesame seeds.
  • Sesame oil obtained from the seeds is one of the most sought after cooking oil in Malaysia, Indonesia and southern states of rural India.

Safety profile

Sesame seed allergy is a kind of hypersensitivity reaction in some sensitive individuals. Generally, the reactions include hives, dermatitis and itching. Sometimes, the disease manifestation may be severe and may lead to serious physical symptoms like vomiting, stomach pain, swelling of lips and throat leading to breathing difficulty, chest congestion, and death. It is, therefore, sesame products may be avoided as food in these individuals. 

Ref.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sesame

Ref.http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/sesame-seeds.html

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.

 

Green chickpeas curry

Green Chick peas Image    Green chickpea curry

dried Green chickpeas / green chanas / sukha hara Chanas

Hi friends ! Another of healthy and simply delicious recipe of chickpeas it has numerous benefits to offer to healthy eaters. Dried Green chickpeas / dried green chanas/ Hara Chanas is protein rich curry is a good accompaniment with basmati rice or any Indian bread of your choice.

Main Name: Chickpea

Biological Name: Cicer arietinum

Names in other Indian languages: Kothu kadalai (Tamil), Kadala (Malayalam), Sanagalu (Telugu), Chana (Gujarati), Chola (Bengali), Harbara (Marathi), Buta (Oriya), Chole (Punjabi), Chana sabut (Urdu)

A staple of Middle Eastern, African, and Indian cuisines, chickpeas are believed to be one of the oldest cultivated beans, dating as far as 5,400 BC. The first record of consuming chickpeas can be traced back to about seven thousand years back. They were first cultivated in the Mediterranean basin around 3000 BC amongst Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans and were then introduced to other subtropical regions by the Spanish and Portuguese explorers in the 16th century. Gradually, the Indians who had immigrated to other countries brought back chickpeas and integrated them into their cuisines. Today, India is the largest producer of chickpeas, supplying around 80 to 90 percent of the world’s production. Other commercial producers include Pakistan, Turkey, Ethiopia, and Mexico.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dried Green chickpeas / dried green chanas / sukha hara Chanas
  • 2 medium size onions, finely chopped
  • 4 medium size tomatoes, cut into small pieces and pureed
  • 1/2 tsp Red chili powder
  • 2 cloves, powdered
  • 4 peppercorns, powdered
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 3 tsp Coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 1 ” piece Ginger, finely grated
  • 15 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/4 tsp Salt / or as per taste

Method:

Step 1.

Wash dried Green chickpeas / dried green chanas / sukha hara Chanas well and soak it overnight in 600 ml of water.

Step 2.

Peel wash and cut the onions fine, keep aside.

Step 3.

In a pressure cooker take the soaked dried Green chickpeas / dried green chanas / Hara Chanas along with the water soaked in. Add finely chopped onion and 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.

Step 4.

Let the cooker come to room temperature, open the lid and take out the cooked dried Green chickpeas / dried green chanas / Hara Chanas in a mixing bowl. Keep aside.

Step 5.

Wash tomatoes well. Cut the tomatoes into small pieces and put them in a blender and puree it. Keep ready.

Step 6.

Mince the garlic cloves, peel and finely grate the ginger, keep aside.

Step 7.

Heat olive oil in a heavy bottom sauce pan, add cumin seed , wait till it crackles. Add Bay leaves sauté for few seconds, add powdered cloves, peppercorn, Cinnamon, coriander powder, turmeric, red chili powder . Mix and sauté for few seconds add ginger garlic paste fry for few seconds . Then add pureed tomatoes and cook covered on low flame , till oil starts to surface.

Step 8.

Now add to the sauce pan cooked dried Green chickpeas / dried green chanas / sukha hara Chanas along with the onions and water it is cooked in. Mix it well.

Step 9.

 On high flame, bring dried Green chickpeas / dried green chanas / sukha hara Chanas and masalas

to a boil and reduce to low flame and cook for 15-20 minutes more. Switch off the stove, serve hot with steamed rice or any Indian bread of your choice like fresh naans, parathas, chapattis etc..

Health benefits of Dried Green chickpeas / dried green chanas/ Hara Chanas:

Rich in both types of fiber, soluble and insoluble, chickpeas escort the trapped bile acids out of the body and lower cholesterol levels, thereby contributing to cardiovascular health.

The insoluble fiber content in chickpeas helps in preventing digestive disorders, like irritable bowel syndrome and diverticulosis; hence, promoting positive digestive health.

With folate and magnesium in high amounts, chickpeas protect the body from cardiovascular diseases. Folate reduces the levels of the amino acid, homocysteine which causes damage to the lining of arteries and increases the risk of blood vessel blockages.

With a rich supply of soluble fiber, chickpeas help in balancing blood sugar levels; thus, providing support to diabetic patients suffering from highs and lows of blood sugar levels.

The high fiber content in chickpeas induces feelings of satiety, thereby cutting down the intake of unwanted calories and keeping your appetite under control.

An excellent source of the trace mineral manganese, chickpea boosts production of energy and defends against several diseases.

Molybdenum is a mineral and an antioxidant important for stimulating the body’s mechanism for reducing symptoms of energy, helping with impotency in men, fighting against tooth decay and irritability, and preventing anemia. Molybdenum is found in chickpeas in abundance.

Chickpeas contain phytochemicals called saponins which are highly beneficial for the health of women. They act as antioxidants, providing protection against osteoporosis, lowering the risk of breast cancer, and minimizing hot flushes in post menopausal women.

Chickpeas help in meeting your daily iron requirements. The deficiency of which reduces the delivery of oxygen throughout the body, resulting in feelings of weakness and tiredness, difficulties in concentration, and increasing the risk of infections.

A good source of iron, chickpeas also help with the proper functioning of the human system and preventing conditions, like anemia, weakness, hair loss, headaches, and other critical health concerns.

Regular consumption of folate is important for the production and maintenance of new cells, particularly during periods of rapid growth, like during pregnancy and infancy. Women, who consume adequate amounts of folate during their childbearing years, can reduce their risk of delivering babies with a neutral tube defect.

Enriched with the amino acid tryptophan, chickpeas are a good source of serotonin which regulates fluctuating moods and sleeping disorders. Eating chickpeas before bedtime leads to calmness and induces a good night’s sleep.

Ref. http://recipeclout.india-server.com/chickpeas.html

 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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Kulfa / Purslane Bhurji

Kulfa Bhurji

Kulfa / Purslane bhurji

Hi friends ! Looking for an easy yet tasty Kulfa/Purslane recipe? Learn how to make Kulfa/ Purslane Bhurji using healthy ingredients.We love  Kulfa ki bhurji . Kulfa / Purslane has thick and spongy leaves, and reddish stems, both of which are edible.

Botanical name : Portulaca Oleraceaa

Indian name : Kulfa

Kulfa Image 1

Although purslane is considered a weed in the United States, it may be eaten as a leaf vegetable. It has a slightly sour and salty taste and is eaten throughout much of Europe, the middle east, Asia, and Mexico. The stems, leaves and flower buds are all edible. Purslane may be used fresh as a salad, stir-fried, or cooked as spinach is, and because of its mucilaginous quality it also is suitable for soups and stews. Australian Aborigines use the seeds to make seedcakes. Greeks, who call it andrakla (αντράκλα) or glystrida (γλυστρίδα), use the leaves and the stems with feta cheese, tomato, onion, garlic, oregano, and olive oil, add it in salads, boil it or add to casseroled chicken. In Turkey, besides being used in salads and in baked pastries, it is cooked as a vegetable similar to spinach. In Albania it is also is used as a vegetable similar to spinach, mostly simmered and served in olive oil dressing, or mixed with other ingredients as a filling for dough layers of byrek. In the south of Portugal (Alentejo), “baldroegas” are used as a soup ingredient.

Names of this green leafy vegetable in other languages:

  • Bengali: Lunia, Bara Lunia
  • Hindi: Kulpha, Khursa,
  • Gujarati: Luni bhaji
  • Maharashtrian: Ghol
  • Tamil: Pachiri
  • Telugu: Gangapaayala, Peddapaayala, Payala kura, Peddapaavila aaku koora, Goli Kura
  • Kannada: Doddagoni Soppu
  • Arabic: Ba’le, Bakli, Farfhin, Arnuba, Bighal, Barabra (Maghrib), Rijl, Rujila, Al-hamqa, Al-baqla, Badalqa, Kharqa
  • Armenian: Perper
  • English: Purslane, Garden purslane, Pigweed, Hogweed
  • French: Pourpier potager
  • Greek: Glystiritha, Andrakln
  • Italian: Portulaca, Porcellana, Perchjazza (Bari, Apulia)
  • Spanish: Verdolaga
  • Turkish: Semizotu, Temizlik (Aksaray Province)
  • Urdu: Kulfa ki bhaji

Purslane / Kulfa is actually a super food. High in omega 3 fatty acids, purslane also possesses a variety of other nutritional benefits. Making appearances in farmers’ markets and even fancy restaurants, purslane should also become a household staple, as it is a potent health remedy.

What is Purslane?

Often labeled as a “weed,” purslane is actually a succulent herb. The plant is formally known as portulaca oleracea and less affectionately called little hogweed. The plant looks similar to the common jade plant and generally has fleshy, round leaves growing from a thin stalk.

The flavor components alone are often enough to make individuals try the herb. The leaves are the most important part of the plant and offer a moisture-rich bite similar to the crispness of a fresh cucumber. The leaves also render a note of lemony tang with a bit of a peppery finish.

Taste is not the only reason to eat this plant, however. It is considered by many as “a miracle plant.” Purslane / Kulfa literally has the highest level of omega 3 fats than any other green plants. It also boasts an assortment of other vitamins and nutrients.

 

Ingredients :

  • 500 gms Kulfa / purslane, washed and finely chopped
  • 2 Medium size onions, finely chopped
  • 4 tbsp Chana dal / Bengal gram split
  • 1/4 tsp Asafetida / hing
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 level tsp Red Chili powder
  • 3 tbsp Olive oil or any other cooking oil

Method:

Step 1.

Heat the oil in a wok / kadahi / pan add asafetida / hing, sauté for few seconds till turns pink.

Step 2.

Add onions and fry onions in hot oil. When onions turn light golden, add Kulfa / Purslane, washed Chana dal / Bengal gram split, red chili powder and salt.

Step 3.

Mix well, sauté for a minute. Cover and cook on low flame till Chana dal / Bengal gram split is well cooked. Switch off the stove.

Step 4.

Serve hot with steamed white rice or any Indian bread of choice.

Health Benefits of Kulfa / Purslane:

In addition to its nearly 400mg of omega 3 fatty acids per serving, purslane also offers a variety of other nutrients.

The tender, leafy plant also possesses a number of nutrients including vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, iron, calcium, manganese, magnesium, and potassium.These nutrients make the plant an effective herbal refreshment for health and wellness.

Its high concentrations of omega 3 fats make it an effective treatment for boosting heart health, lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, and controlling symptoms of attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism.

Its nutrient profile also make it an effective treatment for diabetes, asthma, migraines, and osteoporosis.

The herb can even prevent cancer, promote skin health and boost immunity.

While labeled by the U.S. Department of Agriculture as a “noxious weed,” Kulfa / purslane is actually a beneficial health supplement. Above all, it is a taste and treat combination !

Ref. http://www.earthclinic.com/herbs/purslane.html

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.

 

 

 

Panna /Green Mango Drink

Aam panna 1 copy Aam panna

Panna /Green Mango Drink

Hi friends! I am introducing a delicious summer drink Panna, it is a raw mango drink. This is made with green cooking mangoes. It is a very well-liked drink for hot summer days. In India and Pakistan people prepare a very refreshing drink from fresh raw mangoes. it’s sweet and sour in taste. The pulp of raw mango should be mixed with cumin seeds, black pepper, and black salt. Blend and serve this chill drink in sizzling summer to overcome dehydration. The summer has almost reached its peak and we need such summer coolers to cool our self’s. Raw mangoes are also good source of B vitamins that are beneficial to maintain good health it can be used in preparing numerous dishes. Due to the presence of vitamin C, they are highly beneficial in strengthening immune system. It helps in throwing away from all waste products from the body.

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time : 15 minutes

Course : Beverages, Cold beverages

Cuisine : Indian, North Indian

serves : 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 raw green cooking mangoes
  • 1/2 cup sugar/ 6 tbsp sugar/as per taste
  • 1tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black salt
  • 1 tsp cumin seed , dry roasted and powdered
  • 1 tbsp dry mint leaves, powdered
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • fresh mint leaves, few leaves
  • Ice cubes

Method :

Step 1.

Wash the mangoes well and place them in the pressure cooker on high flame with three glasses of water.

Step 2.

The moment full pressure is formed reduce the heat to low flame for 10 minutes. Switch off the stove, let the cooker cool down to room temperature, open the lid and remove the mangoes and water in to a mixing bowl.

Step 3.

After cooking the raw mangoes, the peel comes off easily. Scrape the pulp from the peels and mangoes, collect the cooked mango pulp in a bowl discard the peels and seeds.

Step 4.

Blend the mango pulp along with the water it was cooked in add sugar, black salt, salt, cumin powder, dry mint leaves powder and black pepper powder.

Step 5.

Aam panna/ raw mango drink is ready. Store it in a decanter /bottle / jar in the fridge.

Step 6.

Serve with ice cubes and garnished with fresh mint leaf.

Health benefits of Raw mangoes:

Tenderizing Agent

Mango, both in its green & ripe form is a very good tenderizing agent due to these same enzymes, therefore ideal to include in any marinade.

Gastro-Intestinal Disorders

Unripe green mangoes are beneficial in the treatment of gastro-intestinal disorders. Mix one chopped raw mango with honey and salt. Consuming this mixture is very much effective in curing for summer diarrhoea, dysentery, piles, morning sickness, chronic dyspepsia, indigestion and constipation.

Heat Stroke

Raw mango guards you from negative effects of excessive hot temperature. The harmful sunrays and sizzling winds are dangerous to the health of your skin. To prevent from excessive loss of water from the body, you may consume raw mango sprinkled with salt. This simple snack quenches your thirst. Heat stroke leads to extreme exhaustion & weakness, which can be treated with raw mango drink. You need to cook raw mango in hot ashes and mix the pulp with sugar. This recipe provides amazing energy. Drinking raw mango juice helps in preventing from extreme loss of sodium chloride.

Scurvy

This remedy is highly popular in the scriptures of Indian traditional medicines. Dried powder of raw mango that is prepared after drying in sun is highly useful in the treatment of scurvy (Scurvy is a disease resulting from a deficiency of vitamin C).

Herbal Remedy for Bilious Disorders

Unripe mangoes are an excellent fruit remedy for bilious disorders or liver disorders. The acids contained in the unripe, green mango trigger the secretion of bile and act as an intestinal antiseptic. Consumption of green mango with honey and pepper alleviates biliousness, and thereby diseases like urticaria and jaundice.

Blood Disorders

The fresh green raw mango is highly valued for its ability to cure blood disorders. It increases the elasticity of the blood vessels and helps the formation of new blood cells. It aids the absorption of food, iron and prevents bleeding tendencies. It increases body resistance against tuberculosis, anaemia, cholera and dysentery.

Precaution

We know excess of anything is bad, so avoid eating raw mangoes in-excess. Their excessive intake may cause throat irritation, indigestion, dysentery and abdominal colic. One should, therefore, not consume more than one or two green mangoes daily. Drink water immediately after eating raw mangoes as, it clots sap and makes more irritated. Do not eat raw mango without draining its sap. The intake of sap may cause gastro- intestinal, throat, and mouth infection.

Ref. http://www.khanapakana.com/article/ced410b8-af11-4a98-a330-0b784a162737/-raw-mango-natural-benefits-and-curative-properties

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.

 

 

Raw Papaya curry

Raw papaya curyRaw Papaya curry

Hi friends! Green papaya is a powerful fruit full of essential nutrients and enzymes to promote digestive health. Since enzyme levels decline as the fruit ripens, raw papaya is picked when it is still green to retain all of its natural enzymatic qualities.

Raw Papaya curry

Ingredients:

  • 4 Raw papaya small size, cut into medium size pieces
  • ½ cup Grated Coconut
  • 1 medium size Onion , finely chopped
  • 6 cloves Garlic , minced
  • 2 Green Chilies
  • 1/2 tsp Salt / or salt to taste

For Seasoning:

  • 1/2 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1 Dry Red Chilies
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida / hing
  • 2 sprigs Curry Leaves
  • 2 tbsp Coconut Oil

 For the marinade:

  • 2 tbsp Curd / yogurt / dahi
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder

Method:

Step 1.
Peel the skin of the papaya, clean from inside, remove seeds and wash well.

Step 2.

Cut the papaya into small pieces. Marinate the pieces in a mixing bowl with salt, turmeric , red chili powder and half cup of whisked curd for 2-3 hours .

Step 3.

Place a pressure cooker on high flame add marinated papaya pieces and half cup of water, close the lid of the pressure cooker. The moment full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. let the cooker cool to room temperature, open the lid and remove the papaya in to a bowl. The papaya is soft and it turns transparent when it is cooked.

Step 4.
Grind the grated coconut, garlic, onion, green chilies with 1/4 cup of water to a very fine paste.Keep aside.

Step 5.
For seasoning heat the oil in a heavy bottom pan. After a minute, lower the heat and add the mustard seeds wait for mustard to crackle, add asafetida, the curry leaves and fry, add the ground coconut masala to the seasoning. Cover and cook for 3-4 minutes. Add steamed papaya to the masala, mix well. Cook for 4-5 minutes on low flame, switch off the stove.

Step 6.

Serve hot with steamed rice or chapattis.

Health Benefits from Green Papaya:

The anti-inflammatory virtue from the papain in papaya greatly reduce inflammation in diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, gout and asthma.

The rich fiber in papaya bind to cancer-causing toxins in the colon and is eliminated from the body during bowel movements.

Papaya is commonly known for its fine and natural laxative virtue which aids digestion. Taken regularly, it can help habitual constipation, bleeding piles and chronic diarrhea.

The three very powerful anti-oxidants in papayas help prevent the oxidation of cholesterol. Oxidized cholesterol forms dangerous plagues that can eventually cause heart attacks or strokes.

Vitamin A available in papaya helps to reduce lung inflammation. So it is useful for active as well as passive smokers.

The papain in unripe papaya is extremely beneficial for those who are deficient in gastric juice, have excess of unhealthy mucus in the stomach, dyspepsia and intestinal irritation.

Consumption of unripe papaya juice help to contract the muscle fibers of the womb, resulting in proper and regular menstrual flow. It is especially helpful in cases of menstruation cessation in young ladies due to cold or trauma.

The juice from unripe papaya is highly beneficial in treating skin disorders like acne and psoriasis. When applied to wounds, it prevents pus formation and swelling. Paste made from unripe papaya when applied to the face, may remove pigmentation or brown spots, and making the skin smooth and delicate. Try it.

Immerse cut ripe papaya in vinegar for a week, then consume twice a day with meals until spleen is normalized.

Drink honey mixed in fresh juice from unripe papaya regularly over inflamed tonsils for diphtheria and other throat disorders. It dissolves the membrane and prevents infection from spreading.

 Ref.http://www.amicusfoods.com/green_papaya.html

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 Chutney

Andhra DosaAndhra Tomato Chutney withPoha dosa / Attukula Attu .

Hi friends! Among the myriad varieties of chutneys, a special mention must be made of this easy to cook, delicious Andhra tomato chutney. It is a very good accompaniment to Poha dosa / Attukula Attu .

Nutritional Value of Tomatoes

The many health benefits of tomatoes can be attributed to their wealth of nutrients and vitamins, including an impressive amount of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as significant amounts of vitamin B6, folate, and thiamin. Tomatoes are also a good source of potassium, manganese, magnesium, phosphorous, and copper. Tomatoes also have dietary fiber and protein, as well as a number of organic compounds like lycopene that also contribute to the overall health benefits that tomatoes can confer to our health!

Prep time: 2 minutes

Cook time: 5 minutes

Serves: 4

Cuisine : Indian, Andhra Pradesh

Course: Chutney and Dips

Level : Easy

Ingredient:

  • 3 medium tomatoes
  • 2 green chilies
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp Asafetida / hing
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 tsps olive oil

Method:

Step 1.

Wash and cut tomatoes into small cubes. Heat two tsp oil in a pan, add cumin seeds sauté till cumin starts crackling, add asafetida. when asafetida turns light pink in colour add tomato cubes and green chilies.

Step 2.

Cover and cook on low flame till tomato turns soft. Switch off the stove and cool.

Step 3.

Grind the cooked tomatoes along with salt to a smooth paste. Remove in a small serving bowl.

Step 4.

For seasoning, heat a tsp of oil in a pan, add mustard seeds , when mustard starts crackling add asafetida, dry red chili, few curry leaves and turn off heat. Pour this seasoning over the chutney and serve with Attukula Attu /Poha dosas.

Health Benefits of Tomatoes:

The health benefits of tomatoes have been known to mankind since ancient times. Tomatoes are rich sources of antioxidants that have been proven to be effective against many forms of cancer. Some of the other health benefits of tomatoes are as follows:

Abundant Source of Antioxidants: Tomato contains large amount of lycopene, an antioxidant that is highly effective in scavenging cancer causing free radicals. This benefit can even be obtained from heat-processed tomato products like ketchup. The lycopene in tomatoes defends against cancer and has been shown to be particularly effective in fighting prostate cancer, cervical cancer, cancer of the stomach and rectum as well as pharynx and esophageal cancers.

Rich Source of Vitamins and Minerals: A single tomato can provide about 40% of the daily vitamin C requirement. Vitamin C is a natural antioxidant which prevents against cancer-causing free radicals from damaging the body’s systems. It also contains abundant vitamin A and potassium, as well as iron. Potassium plays a vital role in maintaining nerve health and iron is essential for maintaining normal blood health. Vitamin K, which is essential in blood clotting and controls bleeding, is also abundant in tomatoes.

Reduces Cholesterol and Protects the Heart: The lycopene in tomatoes prevents serum lipid oxidation, thus exerting a protective effect against cardiovascular diseases. The regular consumption of tomatoes has been proven to decrease the levels of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood. These lipids are the key culprits in cardiovascular diseases and lead to the deposition of fats in the blood vessels.

Counters the Effect of Cigarette Smoke: The two main components of tomatoes, coumaric acid and chlorogenic acid, fight against nitrosamines which are produced in the body and are the main carcinogens found in cigarettes. The presence of vitamin A in such high quantities has also been shown to reduce the effects of carcinogens and can protect you against lung cancer.

Improves Vision: Vitamin A, present in tomatoes, aids in improving vision, as well as in preventing night-blindness and macular degeneration. Vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant that can be formed from an excess of beta-carotene in the body. A lot of vision problems occur due to the negative effects of free radicals, and vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant.

Digestive Health: Tomatoes keep the digestive system healthy by preventing both constipation and diarrhea. It also prevents jaundice and effectively removes toxins from the body. Furthermore, tomatoes have a large amount of fiber, which can bulk up stool and reduce symptoms of constipation. A healthy amount of fiber helps to stimulate peristaltic motion in the smooth digestive muscles, and also release gastric and digestive juices.

Lowers Hypertension: Daily consumption of tomatoes reduces the risk of developing hypertension, also known as high blood pressure. This is partially due to the impressive levels of potassium found in tomatoes. Potassium is a vasodilator, meaning that it reduces the tension in blood vessels and arteries, thereby increasing circulation and lowering the stress on the heart by eliminating hypertension.

Manages Diabetes: A study conducted by the Journal of the American Medical Association shows that daily consumption of tomatoes reduces the oxidative stress of type 2 diabetes.

Healthy Skin: Tomatoes aid in maintaining healthy teeth, bones, hair and skin. Topical application of tomato juice is even known to cure severe sunburns. Daily consumption of tomatoes protects the skin against UV-induced erythema. Tomatoes rank high in the preparation of anti-aging products.

Prevents Urinary Tract Infections: Tomato intake also reduces the incidence of urinary tract infections, as well as bladder cancer. This is because tomatoes are high in water content, which can stimulate urination, so tomatoes are a diuretic in certain ways. This increases the elimination of toxins from the body, as well as excess water, salts, uric acid, and some fat as well!

Ref. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/vegetable/tomatoes.html

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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Poha dosa or attukula Attu

Andhra Dosa Poha dosa or attukula Attu

Hi friends ! this Dosa recipe is an Andhra Pradesh specialty and is known as Attukula Attu or Poha Dosa. It is an amazingly soft, spongy, porous dosa. Is fluffy inside and crisp on the edges and makes a delicious week end breakfast. It can be served with tomato chutney and sambar like any other South Indian dosa.

Prep time : Soaking over night + 15 minutes

Cook time : 30 minutes

Cuisine : Indian , Andhra Pradesh

Course : Breakfast

Serves: 12 dosas

Ingredients :

  • 2 cups rice sona masoori (variety of rice) gives good results
  • 1/2 cup poha/ Flattened rice /also called beaten rice
  • 1 1/2 cup sour curd whisked with 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 tsp Fenugreek seeds
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • 2/3 tsp salt
  • oil for frying the dosa

Method:

Step 1.

wash the rice and poha / Flattened rice /beaten rice in a bowl. Soak the rice, Fenugreek seeds and poha in the buttermilk mixture over night.

Step 2.

Grind to a smooth batter along with the soaked in buttermilk. Add soda ,salt and mix well. Keep aside for 1/2 an hour.

Step 3.

Heat a non stick tava or griddle take a ladle of batter and spread the batter and make a ¼ inch thick dosa.

Step 4.

Drizzle oil on the dosa and around the edges. Cover the dosa with a lid and cook on medium flame for 1-2 minutes till the base is cooked and crisp and the top is soft and spongy. Flip and cook the other side.

Step 5.

Serve poha dosa hot with Tomato /coconut chutney and pumpkin sambar.

 

Andhra Pradesh cuisine is a cuisine of South India native to the Telugu people from the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. It is also the cuisine of the Telugu-speaking population of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu with slight variations due to local influences. Generally known for its tangy, hot and spicy taste, the cooking is very diverse due to the vast spread of the people and varied topological regions.

All three regions — Coastal Andhra, Rayalaseema and Telangana — have distinctive cuisines, where in semi-arid Telangana state region millet-based breads (roti) is predominant staple food, while rice is predominant in irrigated Andhra and Rayalaseema regions and ragi is popular in Rayalaseema regions which is predominantly semi-arid. Many of the curries (known as koora), snacks and sweets vary in the method of preparation and differ in name, too.

The state is the leading producer of red chili, rice and millets in India influences the liberal use of spices — making the food one of the richest and spiciest in the world. Vegetarian as well as meat and seafood (coastal areas) feature prominently on the menus. Dal (lentils), tomato and tamarind are largely used for cooking curries. Spicy and hot varieties of pickles form an important part of Telugu cuisine.

Ref.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telugu_cuisine

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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Raw Mango curry

Raw mango curryRaw Mango curry

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cuisine: Indian ,South Indian

Course: Main , side dish

Cook time: 15 minutes

Level :Easy

Serves: 4

Hi friends! This is my summer season posting. It is a delicious curry which is made with few ingredients. It is Mango season and raw mangoes are available , this raw mango curry is a good accompaniment to steamed rice.

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium size Raw Mangoes
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp Salt/ or salt as per taste
  • 1 tsp Ginger, finely grated
  • 1/2 cup Thick Coconut Milk
  • 1 cup thin coconut milk

Masala to grind:

  • 1/2 cup Grated coconut
  • 2 Green Chilies
  • 6 Garlic cloves
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds

For Seasoning:

  • 1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp Fenugreek seeds
  • 1 Small onions, finely chopped
  • 1 sprig Curry leaves
  • 2 Dry red chilies
  • 1 tbsp Coconut oil

Method:

Step 1.

Wash and chop the mango into medium pieces.

Step 2.

On high flame place the pressure cooker , add the raw mango cubes and one tea cup water, turmeric powder, chili powder, 1/4 tsp salt and close the lid. As full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. Let the cooker cool down to room temperature, open the lid and remove the cooked mango pieces in a mixing bowl.

Step 3.

Grind coconut, green chili, garlic cloves and cumin seeds with little water to make a smooth paste. Keep it aside.

Step 4.

In a pan, heat the oil add mustard seeds, when mustard starts crackling, add fenugreek seeds. Add the curry leaves and dry red chilies, grated ginger, sauté for 1-2 minutes, add chopped onions. Fry onions till light golden in colour and add coconut masala paste and mix well.

Step 5.

Now add cooked mango along with little water. (can use same water used for boiling mango).

Step 6.

Add 1/4 tsp salt and mix well. Curry should be of medium consistency and simmer for about 5-6 minutes on a low flame. Switch off the stove. Serve hot with rice.

  Health benefits of mangoes:

Lowers Cholesterol

Eating mangoes regularly can keep cholesterol levels in check. The high vitamin C, pectin and fiber content present in mangoes helps lower cholesterol levels, especially the ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol as well as triglycerides in the blood. At the same time, they help increase the ‘good’ HDL cholesterol.

Plus, mangoes are a rich source of potassium, which plays a key role in increasing blood flow in the nervous system, which in turn controls heart rate and blood pressure. They also reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes.

 Rejuvenates Skin

Mangoes are amazing for your skin and are often used in face masks and scrubs. Being a great source of antioxidants, particularly vitamin C, mangoes help keep your skin healthy and glowing.

Plus, the vitamin A and beta-carotene in this fruit can restore, rejuvenate and revive your skin with vigor as well as give it a beautiful shine. Mangoes can also reduce dark spots, blemishes and acne.

To enjoy beautiful skin, do not throw away the skin after peeling a ripe mango. Rub the skin over your face, allow it to dry for 10 to 15 minutes, and then rinse it off with warm water. This simple remedy will make your skin soft and blemish-free!

 Prevents Heat Stroke

To reduce your risk of getting heat stroke, it is important to maintain the fluid level in your body. Being a rich source of potassium, mangoes help maintain the sodium level, which in turn regulates the body’s fluid level and protects you from heat stroke.

During the summer days, you can eat ripe mangoes or raw green mangoes daily to help cool down and rehydrate your body quickly. If you are eating ripe mangoes, soak them in water for one hour before eating to enhance their cooling effect.

You can make a healthy drink with raw mangoes to prevent heat stroke. Boil two raw mangoes in two cups of water until they become soft. When cool, squeeze out the pulp of the boiled mangoes and add it to a glass of cool water. Add rock salt and sugar for taste. Drink it once or twice daily.

 Improves Vision

Mangoes are also food for your eyes. The high amount of vitamin A present in mangoes is an important nutrient for eye health. Vitamin A promotes good eyesight and prevents various eye-related disorders like night blindness, cataracts, macular degeneration, dry eyes, soft cornea and general ocular discomfort.

Also, the flavonoids like beta-carotene, alpha-carotene and beta-cryptoxanthin present in mangoes are essential for good vision.

So, eat mangoes daily to improve your vision. Just one cup of sliced ripe mangoes fulfills 25 percent of your daily requirement of vitamin A.

 Alkalizes the Whole Body

This popular summer fruit also has an alkalizing effect on the body. The tartaric acid, malic acid as well as the small amount of citric acid found in mangoes help maintain a healthy alkaline level in the body.

This in turn prevents several health problems like chronic metabolic acidosis, kidney disease, muscle impairment and weakened bones.

Eating mangoes on a regular basis helps maintain the normal and slightly alkaline pH of the blood between a healthy 7.35 and 7.45. This helps transfer more oxygen throughout the body, increases energy levels, combats weight gain and prevents various digestive problems and osteoporosis.

 Aids Digestion

The high fiber content in mangoes helps digestion and elimination of waste products, as well as normalizes bowel movements. They can also help prevent gastrointestinal disorders like Crohn’s disease, according to a study published in Gastroenterology in 2013.

In addition, the fruit can provide relief from constipation and stomach ulcers. Mangoes also have enzymes that increase the breakdown of carbohydrates and protein, thus promoting conversion of food into energy.

Eating both ripe and unripe mangoes on a regular basis will improve digestion and reduce your risk of different types of gastrointestinal disorders.

Fights Cancer

The promising anti-carcinogenic properties of mangoes come from its high fiber and vitamin C content, along with the presence of several phenols and enzymes.Several studies have shown that the anti-carcinogenic and antioxidant compounds in mangoes can protect against colon, breast, lung, skin, leukemia and prostate cancers. Some of the antioxidant compounds found in mangoes that help fight cancer are quercetin, isoquercitrin, astragalin, fisetin, gallic acid and methyl gallat.The anti-cancer compounds in mangoes effectively target and eliminate harmful cancer cells, without harming healthy, normal cells.The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute based in Boston recommends drinking one to two glasses of mango smoothies daily as part of a healthy diet for those who suffer from cancer.

Boosts Immune System

The high amount of vitamins C and A in mangoes plays a key role in keeping your immune system healthy and strong. Vitamin A is essential for proper immune system functioning.

It also maintains healthy skin and mucosal membranes, minimizing the risk of entry of various harmful bacteria and fungi. Vitamin C keeps the skin healthy and restricts the entry of infectious particles. It also boosts white blood cell production that strengthens immunity.Plus, mangoes have 25 different kinds of carotenoids that are good for your immune system. A strong immune system can easily fight common diseases like cold, flu and infections.Summer is here and so are the tasty and delicious mangoes. Considered the ‘king of the fruits,’ mangoes are loved by people of all ages and are eaten fresh more than any other fruit in the world. The sweet and aromatic taste of mangoes can refresh the mind and make you feel happy.

The health benefits of mangoes come from its rich content of nutrients, bioactive compounds and fiber. Mangoes are one of the richest sources of vitamins A, C and E, as well as minerals including potassium, magnesium, copper, calcium and phosphorus. They are also packed with pre-biotic dietary fiber and poly-phenolic flavonoid antioxidant compounds.

Improves Memory

Mangoes also promote brain health and improve concentration level. According to a study published in the journal Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity, there are several components in mangoes that help increase cholinergic function and decrease oxidative stress. This, in turn, enhances memory.The glutamine acid provided by mangoes is also known to boost memory and promote mental alertness. Plus, mangoes contain vitamin B6, which is vital for maintaining and improving brain function.

Ref.http://www.top10homeremedies.com/kitchen-ingredients/top-10-health-benefits-mangoes.html/3

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.

Raw Banana curry

 

Raw bananana curry

Raw Banana curry

Hi friends! One benefit of green bananas is the high resistant starch content.  For anyone trying to avoid food with high sugar content, green bananas are an option whereas yellow bananas are not.  So those suffering from Type 2 Diabetes can eat the unripe fruit while maybe ripened bananas are not as compatible. Unripe bananas also have pro-biotic bacteria, a friendly bacterium .  In addition, green bananas also help you absorb nutrients better, particularly calcium.

Cuisine : Indian, south Indian

Course: Main, vegetarian

Level : Easy

Serves : 8

Ingredients:

  • 4 Raw Bananas small size, cut into medium size pieces
  • ½ cup Grated Coconut
  • 1 medium size Onion , finely chopped
  • 3 cloves Garlic , minced
  • 2 Green Chilies
  • 1/2 tsp Salt / or salt to taste

For Seasoning:

  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 2 Dry Red Chilies
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida / hing
  • 2 stalks Curry Leaves
  • 2 tbsp Coconut Oil

 For the marinade:

  • 2 tbsp Curd / yogurt / dahi
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder

Method:

Step 1.

Place the raw banana pieces in a mixing bowl, marinate with curd, turmeric powder and salt and red chili powder. Keep aside for 2-3 hours.

Step 2.

In a blender take the grated coconut, green chilies, onion and garlic and grind them well. Keep aside.

Step 3.

Place a Wok/ kadahi/pan on high flame for seasoning and heat coconut oil in it. Add mustard seeds, when it starts crackling and add red chilies and curry leaves.

Step 4.

Add the marinated banana pieces and cover and cook on low flame, till soft. Stir intermittently.

Step 5.

Mix in ground coconut, onion, green chilies mixture. Cook for 3-4 minutes more.

Step 6.

Serve hot .

Why You Should Eat Green Bananas

Of course, you’ve eaten a banana – but have you ever eaten a green banana? If not, maybe you should. Eating green bananas offers some advantages you won’t get from eating the ripe, yellow fruit. What are the health benefits of green bananas?

Health Benefits of Green Bananas:

Green bananas aren’t a new exotic breed of fruit. They’re the unripe version of the same old banana most people know and love. Green bananas are “starchier”, but the type of starch they contain is resistant starch. Resistant starch is a type of starch that isn’t digested in the same way as most starches. Instead of being broken down, they pass through the intestines unchanged – which gives them the characteristics of an insoluble fiber.

Eat Green Bananas and Reap the Benefits of Resistant Starch

The resistant starch that comes from eating green bananas has some interesting health benefits. It may even help with the battle of the bulge. High fiber foods and foods that contain resistant starch increase satiety and reduce overall calorie consumption, probably due to their effects on digestion and satiety hormones.

According to one study, the resistant starch in green bananas increases the rate of fat burning by blocking the ability of the body to use carbohydrates as fuel. When the body can’t burn carbohydrates as fuel, it’s forced to use fat instead. Foods high in resistant starch also increase insulin sensitivity, which can help people with type 2 diabetes better control their blood sugars.

Another Reason to Eat Green Bananas

Resistant starch has another important function. It helps to keep the digestive tract healthy by acting as “food” for friendly, probiotic bacteria. These good intestinal bacteria ferment the resistant starch in green bananas and use it to make energy. This helps to drive away bad bacteria that can cause anything from a bad case of diarrhea to chronic colon problems. When resistant starch is fermented it produces short-chain fatty acids that help to keep the colon healthy, and, possibly, reduce the risk of colon cancer.

Another surprising benefit? The short-chain fatty acids produced by the fermentation of resistant starch increases the ability of the body to absorb nutrients – especially calcium.

Other Health Benefits of Green Bananas

All bananas are a good source of vitamin B6, vitamin C, and potassium, and green bananas are no exception. People on low carb diets often avoid bananas because of their higher sugar content, but eating green bananas, in moderation, could have benefits for both dieters and diabetics.

Ref. http://www.aviva.ca/article.asp?articleid=173

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.

Kadahi Paneer With Kasuri Methi

Kadahi paneer KMKadahi Paneer With Kasuri Methi

Hi friends! Quick and easy nutritious Paneer / cottage cheese grated, cut, marinated and cooked with cream, kasuri methi, cashew nuts, tomato, and a variety of Indian spices.

Ingredients:

  • 200 gm paneer/ cottage cheese
  • 3 medium size tomatoes
  • 1 ” ginger, finely grated
  • 15 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seed, roasted and powdered
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cloves
  • 2 green cardamoms
  • 1 whole red chili
  • 1/4 tsp mace
  • 1 tsp Kasuri methi
  • 2 black pepper corns
  • 1  onion medium size , finely chopped
  • 15 cashew nuts, powdered
  • 1tbsp fresh cream
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil / clarified butter
  • 1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
  • 1 tsp of lemon juice

For the marinade:

  •  2 tsp ginger paste
  • 2 tsp garlic paste
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Method:

Step 1.

In a mixing bowl cut half the paneer / cottage cheese into tiny cubes and grate the other half. Marinate the paneer / cottage cheese with the mixture of ginger and garlic paste, salt and red chili powder. Keep aside.

Step 2.

Cut tomatoes into small pieces. Heat oil in a wok / Kadahi add bay leaves, green cardamoms, whole red chili, black pepper corns, mace, cloves, sauté for few seconds.

Step 3.

Add minced garlic and finely grated ginger. As the garlic turns golden brown, add the tomatoes, salt and cook covered on low heat. Cool and puree the tomato mixture in a blender. Keep aside.

Step4.

Grind the cashews in a grinder. Heat a tbsp of oil in a wok / Kadahi and add cumin, when it starts crackling, add chopped onions. Sauté the onions till golden and add the pureed tomatoes, Kasuri methi, powdered cashew nuts, cook covered for 8-10 minutes on a low flame.

Step 5.

Add marinated grated and cubed paneer / cottage cheese, mix , cover and cook. Add cumin powder, cream and mix well.

Step 6.
Add lemon juice and cook for a minute or so on low flame. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with any Indian bread of choice.

Paneer/cottage cheese is a type of cheese that was originally found in the area that today encompasses Iran, India and Pakistan. It is a high protein food; it is often substituted for meat in many vegetarian entrees of Indian cuisine. It is commonly used in curried dishes. Paneer is quite easy to make at home. Bring 2 litres of fresh whole milk to the boil. Add 2 table spoons of vinegar or lemon juice or curd and stir well. Put aside. After the milk has curdled, wrap it in a clean muslin cloth, rinse with fresh water and drain well. Form a ball and place it under a heavy saucepan for approx. 20 minutes. 200 g of your paneer is ready. 100 gms of paneer made from cow milk provides 18.3 gms of protein, 20.8 gms of fat, 2.6 gms of minerals, 1.2 gms of carbohydrates, 265 kcal of energy, 208 mgs of calcium, 138 mg of phosphorous. It contains reasonably good amounts of fat and cholesterol. It would be better to avoid it for those with hypertension and diabetes due to its high fat content. It can however be used in small quantities for such patients one or twice a week. It is suitable for all age groups. Cheese is nutritious food made mostly from the milk of cows but also other mammals, including sheep, goats, buffalo, reindeer, camels and yaks. The milk is curdled using some combination of rennet (or rennet substitutes) and acidification. Bacteria acidify the milk and play a role in defining the texture and flavour of most cheeses. There are hundreds of types of cheese. Different styles and flavours of cheese are the result of using different species of bacteria and moulds, different levels of milk fat, variations in length of aging, differing processing treatments (cheddaring, pulling, brining, mould wash) and different breeds of cows, sheep, or other mammals. Other factors include animal diet and the addition of flavouring agents such as herbs, spices, or wood smoke. Whether or not the milk is pasteurised may also affect the flavour. Paneer is a type of cheese. It is the Indian name for cottage cheese. Paneer, unlike other cheeses, has not been matured and it is rather bland. While making paneer from milk, don’t throw away the paneer water. This nutritious water can be used for making soft dough for chapattis or can be used to cook dals. Yoghurt is what we commonly called curd or dahi. It is a wholesome food rich in protein and riboflavin. The versatility of yoghurt or curd in cooking is amazing. It can be used in desserts, dips, breads, soups, rice, salads, and vegetable dishes.

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.

Matra / dried peas Chaat

Matra chaat G  

Matra  Chaat / dry peas Chaat

This is a delicious spicy, very healthy, cooking medium free snack. Matar Ki Chaat can be served as a snack or as a main dish with Indian bread Kulchas.

Although dried peas belong to the same family of beans and legumes, they are classified in a separate group due to the preparation. The fully matured pea pods are dried to get dried peas. It is harder and starchier than that of fresh peas and can be readily used when fresh peas are not available. Dried peas are available in yellow, green, and red colors. Health benefits of dried peas are numerous due to their nutritional value.

Prep time : Soaked overnight + 15 minutes cooking time

Cuisine: Indian

Course : Main / snack

Serves : 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup matara / dried peas
  • 1/2 tsp salt / or salt to taste
  • 1/4 tsp black salt / or salt to taste
  • 1 tsp cumin seed, roasted and powdered
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder, dry roasted
  • 1/4  sp black pepper
  • 1/4  tsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp ginger juice, (finely chopped and squeezed)
  • 1 tsp red chili powder / or to taste
  • 2 tbsp tamarind pulp

For Garnishing

  • 2 tbsp ginger finely chopped

Method:

Step 1.

Wash and soak matra / dried peas in four cups of water overnight.

Step 2.

On high flame place the pressure cooker with the soaked matra/ dried peas along with the water soaked in, and salt. The moment pressure is formed, reduce to low flame for 5 minutes. Switch off the stove. Let the pressure cooker cool down to room temperature. Open the lid take out well cooked matra / dried peas in a bowl and keep aside.

Step 3.

Dry roast the coriander powder for half a minute, add roasted cumin seeds powder. Add the cooked matra / dried peas and mix cook on low flame. Add pepper, red chili powder, ginger juice and tamrind pulp, mix well cook for 5-6 minutes.

Step 4.

Garnish with finely cut ginger threads , serve hot . If serving for main course, serve with Indian bread Kulchas.

 Health benefits of Matra / dried peas:

They are packed with dietary fiber and are a good source of nutrients such as proteins, molybdenum, thiamin, folate, potassium, and phosphorus.  Half a cup of cooked dried peas provides: 

  • 144 calories
  • 26 g carbohydrates
  • 10 g proteins
  • 10 g dietary fiber
  • 1 g fat
  • 2 mg sodium
  • 0 mg cholesterol
  • Since dried peas have high fiber content, they have a cholesterol lowering effect.
  • People with diabetes, hypoglycemia, or insulin resistance problems suffer from irregular glucose metabolism. Dried peas helps to maintain blood sugar levels as it slows down the burning process, thereby providing steady amounts of glucose to the blood.
  • A cup of dried peas provide 65.1% of the daily value of fiber, and the fiber helps to relieve constipation and prevent gastrointestinal disorders.
  • The isoflavones present in dried peas prevents health conditions like prostate and breast cancer.
  • Dried peas are good sources of iron and by eating a quarter cup of peas daily, one can meet 8% of his/her daily iron needs.
  • Other dried peas benefits include the lowering risk of heart disease. The ingredients folate and magnesium present in dried peas help to maintain the level of homocysteine and help to avert heart diseases.
  • Dried peas are rich in magnesium and potassium. The former helps to improve blood flow, and the latter helps to maintain blood pressure, thus lowering the chance of plaque buildup in blood vessels.
  • Sulfites that are commonly used in salads and processed foods cause headache and disorientation. Molybdenum present in dried peas play a vital role in detoxification of sulfites. One can obtain 196% of the daily value of molybdenum by consuming a cup of cooked dried peas.
  • Dried peas are also great protein snack with fiber that helps with weight loss. They will curb hunger pangs by keeping the blood sugar levels under control.

Ref.http://www.diethealthclub.com/therapeutic-value-of-different-foods/beans-and-legumes/dried-peas.html

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.

Lotus Seeds and green peas Curry

lotus seeds and green peas curry 1Lotus Seeds and green peas Curry

After trying out the shallow fried lotus seeds as a healthy snack, here is a delicious curry with the lotus seeds.

Ingredients: 

  • 3 cups Lotus seeds
  • 2 medium size Tomatoes
  • 2 medium size Onions, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Ginger , finely grated
  • 15 cloves of Garlic, minced
  • 12 Cashews, powdered
  • 1 cup Green Peas , fresh or frozen
  • 2 peppercorns, finely powdered
  • 1/4 tsp Cinnamon powder
  • 3 Clove, powdered
  • 1 tsp Fennel / saunf seeds, powdered
  • 1 tsp Chili powder
  • 2 tsp Coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 3 cups Water
  • 1 tsp Salt/ or as per taste
  • 1tabsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 tbsp Coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp Curd / yogurt/ dahi , whisked
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil

Method:

Step 1.

In a heavy bottom pan, put the ghee/ oil and when hot add the lotus seed stir fry until crisp over medium low flame. This takes 5-7minutes. Keep it aside.

Step 2.

Roast the cashew nuts in the microwave for two minutes. Cool and put in a grinder. Powder the cashew nuts in a grinder and keep aside.

Step 3.

In a pressure cooker take green peas add 1/4 cup of water. On a high flame when full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. When pressure cooker cools down to room temperature, open the lid and keep the peas aside.

Step 4.

Cut each tomato in two halves to blanch. In a pressure cooker take the cut tomatoes add 1/4 cup of water. On a high flame when full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. When pressure cooker cools down to room temperature, open the lid and take out the tomatoes in a small bowl, remove the skin from all four pieces with a fork and put them into a blender, along with cashew powder to it and blend the mix. Keep aside.

Step 5.

Cut the onions in to small pieces put in the pressure cooker add 1/4 cup of water. On a high flame when full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. When pressure cooker cools down to room temperature, open the lid and take out the onions into a blender jar. Blend the onions in to a fine paste and keep  aside.

Step 6.

Heat oil in a wok/ Pan / kadai add green cardamom, cinnamon, black pepper, fennel / saunf powder and sauté lightly add the onion paste and sauté for 5-8 minutes on medium flame. Add ginger paste and garlic paste and sauté for half a minute.

Step 7.

Add blanched tomatoes, cashew nut powder paste. Cook for five to seven minutes on low heat. Add salt and turmeric, red chili powder, mix well. Add 3 cups of water bring it to boil add the peas mix well and cook for another 5-7 minutes on low heat.

Step 8.

Add the fried lotus seeds, whisked curd / yogurt / dahi and mix thoroughly . Cook for 2 to 3 minutes and switch off the flame. Add the lemon juice now and mix it well.

Step 9.

Serve hot garnished with coriander leaves. Delicious Lotus seeds Curry can be served with Indian breads of choice!.

Health and beauty benefits of Lotus seeds:

Lotus seeds, commonly known as makhana in India, are the seeds of the water lotus plant. The seeds are small, round and white or off-white in appearance. They are the edible seeds of lotus flower which can be roasted or fried. Lotus seeds are used for nutritional and healing properties in Chinese medicine. The lotus seeds are highly useful in terms of nutritional benefits and are low in saturated fats, sodium and cholesterol; high in magnesium potassium, thiamine and phosphorus. Besides being edible, the lotus plant has many health and beauty benefits as well. You can use makhana seeds in desserts, rice porridge, soups and stir fry dishes.

Lotus seeds are also a good source of protein, iron and zinc, which makes them extremely nutritious. They contain the anti-aging enzyme, which assist repair damaged proteins. Due to this anti-aging propery, many cosmetic companies are trying to include the seeds in their products. Along with it, the seeds have a natural flavonoid which prevents inflammation. Lotus seeds have an astringent property which benefits the kidneys and helps to restore vital energy within the body. The sweet and neutral taste of makhana seeds nourish the spleen and alleviate diarrhea. Makhana seeds are endowed with sedative properties and are used to treat insomnia or restlessness. The lotus embryo is useful for heart because of its bitter and cooling properties. Also it can help dilate blood vessels, thus reducing blood pressure.

According to western research, the seeds are antiviral which help fight the herpes 1 virus. Also it has been founded useful in lowering hypertension. One of the vital medicinal benefits of lotus seeds is stopping chronic diarrhea. Due to astringent properties, the seeds are consumed to help relieve the symptoms of diarrhea and improve appetite. Other major benefits of lotus seeds include palpitations, insomnia and irritability. They are also used to control bleeding.

Since makhana seeds are high in fiber, it helps to avoid constipation. Also they help the body to remove the waste; prevent the accumulation of toxins.  Lotus seeds are low in calories, fat and high in fiber and thus helpful in diabetes. It lowers the blood sugar level. The seeds are recommended for women during pregnancy and post natal weakness; helps in female infertility. The makhana seeds are also used in the treatment of arthritis and rheumatic pains. Further, the seeds are beneficial in weight loss too as they are high in fiber and low in calories .Lotus seeds are also very useful in anemia. The lotus seeds can be digested by all age groups. They are a healthy snack for children .Just roast the seeds a bit and add a pinch of salt.
Ref. http://healthyfoodsonly.blogspot.in/2012/11/health-and-beauty-benefits-of-lotus.html

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.

Beans Curry

Beans curryBeans Curry

This delightful food group is a must try, as beans are tasty and nutritious.

Bean Main Dishes: beans are in stews and casseroles; they’re baked with meat; in some cultures, like that of Mexico, they’re unique dishes that are served constantly [think tacos, enchiladas, chalupas]; cattle drives moved across American eating huge pots of beans at every meal; Indian tribes ate beans for thousands of years.Vegetarian Bean Main Dishes: vegetarians like me frequently fix main dishes without meat, using beans as the filling ingredient, rather than animal products. With a salad and crusty bread, they’re yummy!Baked Beans: are the most famous bean dish and they’re baked with all kinds of different ingredients: onions, garlic, barbecue sauce, cranberries, mushroom, pineapple – even Dr. Pepper and beer.Bean Salads: everyone has eaten cold beans in salads. Bean Soups: there are bean soups in cultures all over the planet from Cuban black bean soup to Mexican spicy soups to French Canadian pea soup and my favorite, our American Senate Bean Soup.Bean Dips: are a favorite of most people and are quite popular at all kinds of social gatherings and surely go well at a Super Bowl party with a huge bowl of chips.

Beans Curry:

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup red kidney beans
  • 1/2 cup black eyed beans / lobiya
  • 6 cups water
  • 3 medium size onions, finely chopped
  • 2 tabs ginger, finely grated
  • 2 tabs garlic, minced
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • 1tsp cumin
  • 3 cloves , powdered
  • 1 bay leaf / Tej patta
  • 2 tabs coriander powder
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds, roasted and powdered
  • 1 tsp kashmiri red chili powder
  • 1 tsp dry mango powder /amchoor
  • 4 medium size tomatoes , finely chopped
  • 1 tsp Gram masala, optional
  • 2 tbsp cilantro/ coriander / dhaniya leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp salt /or salt to taste
  • 3 tabs olive oil / any cooking oil

Method:

Step 1.

Rinse the soaked kidney beans and Black eyed beans overnight.

Step 2.

Now on a high flame in a pressure cooker take the soaked lobia / Black eyed beans/ kidney beans, five cups of water, salt close the lid . After the pressure is formed, reduce the heat to low flame for twenty minutes switch off the stove. Let the cooker cool open the lid and check, beans will be soft.  Set aside with the cooking liquid.

Step 3.

Heat the ghee in a deep and heavy bottom pan, when its hot add the cumin. Wait for it to crackle. Add in the bay leaf, clove, cinnamon and sauté for few seconds then add in the onions and cook until the onions are golden brown.

Step 4.

Add in the ginger, garlic and sauté for a minute or so. Now, Add in the red chili , cumin, coriander powder, stir to mix and add in the tomatoes.

Step 5.

Reduce heat and cover and cook for 5 minutes, stirring every now and then. When the oil starts separating in the fried masala, add in the salt and cooked beans in along with the broth.

Step 6.

Stir to mix, bring to a boil, cover and cook for 15 minutes on medium low heat, till well blended and consistency thickens slightly. Switch off the stove.

Step 7.

Serve this delicious curry hot, garnish with cilantro / coriander/ dhaniya leaves with choice of Indian bread.

Health benefits of Beans:

Nutrients & Beans

Beans are loaded with nutrients that our bodies crave:

B Vitamins: are necessary for healthy brain and nerve cells, for normal functioning of the skin, nerves and digestive system.

Calcium:  for strong bones and teeth and to help keep the body more alkaline, rather than acidic.

Potassium: helps reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke.

Folate: a B vitamin that our bodies don’t produce yet dry beans are our single best source of this important vitamin which helps protect against heart disease and cancer.

Anything that I like to eat that makes me healthier definitely gets an A+

Ref.http://www.blissplan.com/wellness/the-benefits-of-beans-9-reasons-why-you-should-eat-beans/

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.

Butter murukkus

Butter murukkus     Murukku press        Butter murukkus                                                                             Murukku Press

Hi friends! We are a big fans of butter murukkus. The murukkus available in stores are very different from the home made ones. The texture and taste of the murukkus changes with the proportion of ingredients used in making the murukkus. While making this snack, the ratio of rice flour and the other flour will give different look and taste to the snack.

Recipe Cuisine: Indian, South Indian

Recipe Category: Snacks

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Rice flour
  • 2 tbsp Bengal gram flour/ Besan
  • 2 tbsp roasted gram dal flour/ Chutney dal flour
  • 2 tbsp Butter, melted
  • 1/2 tsp Black pepper, freshly ground
  • 1 tsp Cumin seed/ Jeera
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds / Til
  • 1/2 tsp Asafetida / heeng
  • 1 tsp salt / or as per taste
  • Oil For deep frying

Method:

Step 1.

Powder roasted gram dal flour/ Chutney dal flour in a grinder. Keep aside.

Step 2.

In a mixing bowl take rice flour, roasted gram dal flour/ Chutney dal flour, Bengal gram flour/ Besan, salt, pepper, asafetida , sesame seeds, cumin seed and butter. Rub in the melted butter well with your finger tips.

Step 3.           

Slowly add water to make a smooth soft dough easy enough to press.

Reason is we want the butter murukku in strips, not long, broken strips, bite sized. So if its but dry, it breaks by itself as we squeeze. But its not a must, you can either squeeze little and use ur hands to break or squeeze long strips and break later, or even make murukku shape. 3-rub

Step 4.

Heat oil in a wok / kadahi/ pan on the medium flame. Fill in the prepared soft dough in the murukku press with the three star plate at the base in the press. Squeeze the dough pressing the handle, and give it a little shake for the dough to break and fall into the oil. Fry these two to three inches long murukku pieces in to the hot oil. Cook on medium flame stirring in between and flipping the murukkus until cooked from all sides.

Step 5.

Drain the fried murukkus in a paper kitchen towel lined tray. Cool completely before storing in an airtight container.

Notes:

If you hold the press at an angle while squeezing the dough above the hot oil the murukku pieces break easily into the oil.

You can either press the dough down directly in the hot oil or make random lengths on a tray and gradually fry in batches.

Do not over crowd the wok / kadahi/ pan while frying the murukkus as murukkus absorb more oil.

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 kadhi

Tomato Kadhi GTomato kadhi

Sindhi cuisine (Sindhi: سنڌي کاڌا) refers to the native cuisine of the Sindhi people from Sindh, Pakistan. The daily food in most Sindhi households consists of wheat-based flat-bread (phulka) and rice accompanied by two dishes, one gravy and one dry. Today, Sindhi food is eaten in many countries including India, where a sizable number of Hindu Sindhis migrated following the independence in 1947.

Ref.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sindhi_cuisine

Tomato kadhi or Sindhi kadhi

Tomato kadhi or Sindhi kadhi – is a main dish for Sindhis known as curry chawara. Tomato kadhi is very nutritious because of the use of vegetables in this dish. Sindhi kadhi is an example where the dish is enriched with the vegetables providing great taste, colour and texture.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

 Category: Main curse

Cuisine: Indian , Sindhi

Serves: 6

Ingredients:

  • 8-9 medium size tomatoes
  • 3 tbsps Gram flour / Besan
  • 150 gms Cluster beans / Gwar Phali
  • 150 gms Lady finger/Okra/Bhindi
  • 1 carrot, washed, peeled and cubed
  • 2 medium size potatoes, each potato cut into four big pieces
  • 1 tbsp Ginger, grated and juice taken out
  • 1 tsp Red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 level tsp salt or / salt to taste
  • 3 tbsp Olive oil

For seasoning

  • 2 tbsp Olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin seed
  • 1/2 tsp Fenugreek seeds
  • 1/4 tsp Asafetida / Heeng
  • 3 sprigs curry leaves

Method :

Step 1.

Wash, remove side thread, cut cluster beans/ Gwar phali into two inch pieces. Cut the head and tail of Lady finger/Okra/Bhindi and cut into two inch big pieces. wash , peel and cut the carrot into small cubes. Wash peel and cut each potato cut into four big pieces. Keep aside.

 Step 2.

Wash and cut each tomato into four pieces. Grind it to make puree. Keep aside.

Step 3.

Take chopped potatoes, carrots and cut cluster beans/ Gwar phali in the pressure cooker, add 1/4 cup water and a pinch of salt and close the cooker lid. Place the pressure cooker on high flame the moment full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. Let the pressure cooker cool down to room temperature. Open the lid and take out the steamed vegetables in a bowl.

Step 4.

Heat 3 tbsp oil in a wok /kadai/ pan and sauté Lady finger/Okra/Bhindi on medium flame for 3-4 minutes. Lower the heat and remove the shallow fried ladies finger pieces in tray.

Step 5.

Add to the hot oil, asafetida sauté for a few seconds, add mustard and cumin seed. When mustard and cumin start crackling add curry leaves, reduce the heat to low flame.

Step 6.

To the above seasoning add the Gram flour / Besan and saute till it is golden brown. Add a cup of water and bring the mixture to a boil, mix in turmeric , red chili powder, salt and the pureed tomatoes. Mix it well.

Step 7.

When the mixture starts boiling, reduce the heat to low flame. Now add the sautéed Lady finger/Okra/Bhindi pieces, steamed potatoes, carrot cubes and cluster beans/ Gwar phali along with 1 1/2 cup of water and mix well. Boil it, cover and cook on low flame until gravy becomes thick consistency and oil floats.

Step 8.

Serve hot with boiled / steamed white rice, Aloo tuk and pappad !

Note:

  • Steaming cluster beans, potato pieces and carrot cubes in pressure cooker is time saving.
  • sautéing Lady finger/Okra/Bhindi separately is necessary .

Possible health benefits of Lady Finger :

Weight Loss – The low calorie content of Okra (30 kcal / 100 gm) and its high fibre content make it a suitable food for weight loss. It provides minimum calories and its high fibre levels help in keeping you full for longer.

 Heart disease – Okra contains soluble fibre pectin. Pectin helps in lowering bad cholesterol and prevents atherosclerosis by helping in elimination of deposited cholesterol and clots. Controls blood sugar levels – This benefit of lady finger may be attributed to its fibre content. Eugenol a type of fibre, helps in slowing down digestion and absorption of sugar from the blood stream. Hence it helps in avoiding sugar spikes after meal and stabilizes the blood sugar levels. Its fibre further helps in lowering blood sugar levels.

Improves digestion – The fibre content of lady finger helps in better digestion, and regularization of bowels. Pectin swells up in the intestine and helps in easier elimination of waste from the intestine. People suffering from constipation benefit from regular consumption of  lady finger.

Improves immunity –  Another important benefit of lady finger is that it contains Vitamin C which helps in improving immunity.

Anemia – Lady finger contains iron and folate and Vitamin K, nutrients that help in treating and avoiding anaemia. Prevention of colon cancer – Like all other high fibre foods, lady finger too helps in prevention of colon cancer by keeping the digestive system intact and functioning properly.

 Improves eyesight – The Vitamin A and beta carotene present in lady finger may be helpful in improving eyesight.

Treatment of dandruff and lice – Okra is used as  home remedy for dandruff and lice. Cut okra horizontally and boil in water, add lemon to this water and use this water for rinsing hair.

As you can see that most of the benefits of lady finger are attributed to its rich fibre content. Hence dietitians advise everyone to eat as many veggies with your meal as possible.

Ref.http://www.dietburrp.com/benefits-of-lady-finger/

 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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Parwal curry

Parwal Vegetable

Trichosanthes dioica / pointed gourd/ parwal/parval
Trichosanthes dioica is also known as the pointed gourd, parwal/parval (from Hindi),Kovakkai(fromTamil) or thonde kayi (from Kannada), or potol (from Assamese, Sanskrit, Oriya or Bengali (পটল) pôţol) “Paror” in Maithili, “Parol” in Magahi and “Parora” in Bhojpuri, Urdu and Awadhi. Colloquially, in India, it is often called green potato. It is widely cultivated in the eastern and some northern part of India, particularly in Odisha, Bengal, Assam, Bihar, and Uttar Pradesh. It is a good source of carbohydrates, vitamin A, and vitamin C. It also contains major nutrients and trace elements (magnesium, potassium, copper, sulfur, and chlorine) which are needed in small quantities, for playing essential roles in human physiology. parval (pointed gourd, Trichosanthes dioica)

 

Parwal Aloo Odisha

Parwal curry – Recipe is contributed by Mrs. Usha Mehta.

Hi friends! Enjoy this easily digestible vegetable cooked with potatoes and Indian spices. Parwal is a seasonal vegetable and is available during summers till monsoon season in India.

Preparation time : 10 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Serves : 4

Difficulty Level : Easy

Ingredients

  • 300 gms parwal / pointed gourd
  • 1 medium size potato, cubed
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds, roasted and powdered
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 12 cloves garlic , minced
  • 1 tbsp ginger, grated finely
  • 1/2 cup fresh coconut, finely grated
  • 1 cup curd / yogurt / dahi
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt or / salt to taste
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida / heeng
  • 1 tbsp coriander leaves, finely chopped

Method :

Step 1.

Wash and scrape the parwal / pointed gourd lightly with a knife ,cut the ends and cut them into halves horizontally. Remove any fibers and seeds that are yellow and hard. Keep aside.

Step 2.

Peel the potato and cut it lengthwise once and horizontally once to match the parwal / pointed gourd.

Step 3.

In the blender take the minced garlic, grated ginger, grated coconut and curd and blend it to a smooth paste. Keep aside.

Step 4.

Heat 3 tbsp oil in a wok / kadahi /pan and shallow fry the parwal / pointed gourd on medium flame till they become little soft and golden brown. Keep aside.

Step 5.

Then in the same heated oil add potato cubes and shallow fry the potatoes till they become little soft and golden brown and add shallow fried parwal / pointed gourd from step 3.

Step 6.

Add turmeric, chili powder, coriander powder, cumin seeds powder, salt to the shallow fried parwal / pointed gourd and potatoes . Cover and cook till soft.

Step 7.

Add garlic, ginger, coconut, curd paste to the cooked vegetable. Bring it to boil , let it simmer on low flame for 7-8 minutes.

Step 8.
garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves. Serve hot with rice or any other Indian bread.

Note:

  • Peel the skin of Parwal / pointed gourd lightly.
  • Parwal / pointed gourd is generally deep fried before using in the curry, shallow frying is healthier.

 Possible health benefits of Parwal / Pointed gourd:

Improves Digestion Parwal is easy to digest, and the fiber rich green vegetable is good for treating gastrointestinal and liver disorders.

Lowers Cholesterol & Blood Sugar The small round seeds of parwal benefits the health as it lowers cholesterol and blood sugar levels naturally.

Weight Loss This is another health benefit of having parwal. It is low in calories and keeps you fuller for a long time, thus aiding weight loss.

Treats Flu In Ayurveda, pointed gourd or parwal is used as a medicine to cure cold, fever and throat problems.

Blood Purifier According to Ayurveda experts, this is another health benefit of parwal. Pointed gourd is excellent for balancing Kapha. It helps purify blood tissue and this in turn makes it a good green vegetable for skin care as well.

Skin Benefits Parwal is rich in vitamins like Vitamin A and C, and antioxidants which makes it good for the skin.

Ref. http://www.boldsky.com/health/wellness/2013/health-benefits-parwal-036618.html#slide26319

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.

Cabbage Fry

Cabbage fryCabbage Fry

Hi friends! Try this healthy and simple and tasty recipe.

Preparation Time : 10 minutes

Cooking time : 15 minutes

Cuisine: Indian

Course: Main

Level Of Cooking: Easy

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 250 gms Cabbage, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup husked moong dal / Moong dhuli dal ,soaked in a cup of water for 15 minutes
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1 tps Mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp Asafetida / Heeng
  • 1 tsp Ginger grated
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp Red chili powder
  • 2/3 tsp Salt/ or to taste

Method:

Step 1.

Wash and Soak the Moong dal for 15 minutes.Cut the cabbage in fine threads or it can be grated too keep aside.

Step 2.

Heat oil in a wok / kadahi / or pan add mustard seeds, when it  starts crackling add asafetida / heeng saute till slightly pink in colour. Add curry leaves, ginger grated. Stir and sauté for a minute.

Step 3.

Add Moong dal, cabbage turmeric powder and salt, cover and cook on low flame stirring intermittently until moong dal is soft.Serve hot with rice or any Indian bread of choice.

Note:

1. Choose a cabbage that is heavy for its size. Make sure the leaves are tight and firm as loose leaves indicate an older cabbage. Store cabbage in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

2. Cabbage can be eaten raw, steamed, boiled, roasted, sautéed or stuffed. The sulfurous odor often associated with cabbage only develops when the cabbage is overcooked. The longer a cabbage is cooked, the stronger the odor becomes.

3. Add shredded cabbage to any salad or fresh coleslaw.

Quick tips for eating more cabbage:

  • Keep it simple and drizzle roasted chopped cabbage with olive oil, cracked black pepper and minced garlic
  • Add shredded cabbage to a fresh green salad
  • Add chopped cabbage to any soup or stew near the end of cooking.
Possible health benefits of cabbage:

Cabbage, which is often lumped into the same category as lettuce because of their similar appearance, is actually a part of the cruciferous vegetable family. Cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, kale and broccoli are notorious for being chock-full of beneficial nutrients. If you are trying to improve your diet, cruciferous vegetables should be at the very top of your grocery list.

Cabbage can vary in color from green to red and purple, and the leaves can be smooth or crinkled. With less than 20 calories per half cup cooked, it is a vegetable worth making room on your plate for.

Consuming fruits and vegetables of all kinds has long been associated with a reduced risk of many adverse health conditions. Many studies have suggested that increasing consumption of plant foods like cabbage decreases the risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and overall mortality while promoting a healthy complexion, increased energy, and overall lower weight.

Protection from radiation therapy

A compound found in cabbage and other cruciferous vegetables known as 3,3′-diindolylmethane (DIM) has been shown to protect against the harmful effects of radiation therapy. It is well-known that DIM has protective effects against cancer, but this study shows there is also hope for using it as a shield to protect healthy tissues during cancer treatment in the future.

Cancer prevention

Another cancer-fighting compound found in cabbage is sulforaphane. Research over the past 30 years has consistently shown that consuming cruciferous vegetables has been associated with a lower risk of cancer. More recently, researchers have been able to pinpoint that the sulfur-containing compounds (namely sulforaphane) that give cruciferous vegetables their bitter bite are also what give them their cancer-fighting power.

More studies with sulforaphane are testing its ability to delay or impede cancer. Promising results have been seen with multiple types of cancers including melanoma, esophageal, prostate and pancreatic. Researchers have discovered that sulforaphane has the power to inhibit the harmful enzyme histone deacetylase (HDAC), known to be involved in the progression of cancer cells. The ability to stop HDAC enzymes could make sulforaphane-containing foods a potentially powerful part of cancer treatment.

Another natural chemical found in cabbage, parsley, celery and other plants known as apigenin has been found to decrease tumor size in an aggressive form of breast cancer in a recent study conducted at the University of Missouri. Researchers claim that their findings show that apigenin has potential to be used as a non-toxic treatment for cancer in the future.

Red cabbage contains the powerful antioxidant anthocyanin, the same compound that gives other red and purple-hued fruits and vegetables their vibrant colors. Anthocyanins have been shown to slow cancer cell proliferation, kill already formed cancer cells and stop the formation of new tumor growths.

Heart health

The same potent anthocyanins in red cabbage that help protect against cancer have been shown to suppress inflammation that may lead to cardiovascular disease. A recent report in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition associated the intake of flavonoid-rich foods with a lower risk of death from cardiovascular disease and stated that even small amounts of flavonoid-rich foods may be beneficial. The high polyphenol content in cabbage may also reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by preventing platelet buildup and reducing blood pressure.

Immunity and digestion

A popular way to consume cabbage is in a fermented form such as sauerkraut and kimchi. Chocked full of probiotics, fermented foods are one of the best things you can consume for your immune and digestive systems. Healthy microbes generate an acidic environment to preserve and develop flavor and enzymes in fermentation that make vitamins and minerals easier to absorb.

The fiber and water content in cabbage also helps to prevent constipation and maintain a healthy digestive tract. Eating adequate fiber promotes regularity, which is crucial for the daily excretion toxins through the bile and stool.

Ref.http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/284823.php#possible_health_benefits_of_consuming_cabbage

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.

 

 

Kesar Phirni

Phirni Kesar GPhirni Kesar 1

Kesar Phirni /Rice Pudding

 Rice pudding is a dish made from rice mixed with water or milk and other ingredients such as cinnamon and raisins. Different variants are used for either desserts or dinners. When used as a dessert, it is commonly combined with a sweetener such as sugar. Such desserts are found on many continents, especially Asia where rice is a staple.

The following ingredients are usually found in rice puddings:

  • rice; white rice (usually short grain, but can also be long grain, basmati, or jasmine rice), brown rice, black rice
  • milk; (whole milk, coconut milk, cream or evaporated)
  • spices; (nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger etc.)
  • flavorings; (vanilla, orange, lemon, pistachio, rose water etc.)
  • sweetener; (sugar, brown sugar, honey, sweetened condensed milk, fruit or syrups)
  • eggs

Ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rice_pudding

Hi friends! A delicious and fragrant milk and rice based Indian dessert served cold. Milk thickened with rice flour and flavored with cardamom, and saffron.This recipe is contributed by an avid blog user Mrs. Usha Mehta

Cook time : 15 minutes

Cuisine : North Indian, Punjabi

Course : Dessert, Indian Dessert

Serves: 3-4                    

Ingredients:

  • 40 gms Rice flour
  • 500 ml Milk, Low fat
  • 1/2 cup milk, for mixing rice flour
  • 3 green cardamoms, powdered
  • A pinch saffron / Kesar strands
  • 60 gms sugar
  • 1 tbsp Almonds, slivered

Method:

Step 1.
In a mixing bowl mix rice powder and 1/2 cup milk together to a smooth lump free paste.

Step 2.

In a sauce pan take 500 ml milk, bring it to boil reduce the heat and add the rice paste stirring continuously .

Step 3.

Add cardamom powder, saffron, and sugar. Keep stirring till thick and lump free.

Step 4.

Once thickened switch off the stove, pour the phirni mixture into serving dish.

Step 5.

Top it with slivered almonds and some Chirongi.

Step 6.

Refrigerate for 2-3 hours. Serve chill.

Note: Serving and Eating of Phirni

Phirni is served as a dessert after meals. The way of serving this dish is quite distinctive. Traditionally, the rice and milk mixture is poured in separate earthen bowls. While serving, each bowl is served separately. Garnishing plays an important role in serving of this popular sweet dish. It can be done with chopped dry-fruits and raisins. Silver paper also known as ‘chandi wark’ is placed on top of the rice and milk mixture. It is usually eaten with dessert spoon or traditionally with wooden spoon.

Nutritional Facts Related to Phirni/ Rice pudding :

Being a milk based dish, phirni is quite healthful. Rice also adds to the nutritional value of the dish. Even nuts and raisins are full of vitamins, proteins and minerals. The only thing that let the consumers to avoid it is the use of sugar. It is a sweet dish, hence not recommended for obese and diabetic patients.

 Ref. http://ifood.tv/indian/phirni/about

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.

 

Mix Dals Fry

Dal Fry 1Dal Fry

Hi friends! A very popular reasonably spiced north Indian preparation.It is a tasty combination of husked moong dal and masoor dal  . Dal fry  is very delicious quick and easy to make.

Preparation Time : 10 minutes

Cooking time : 15 minutes

Servings : 4

Cuisine: Indian, Punjabi

Course: Dals / lentils

Level Of Cooking : Easy

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup Split husked Moong dal
  • 1/2 cup Masoor dal
  • 1 medium size Onion, finely chopped
  • 2 small size tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 2 green chilies, finely chopped
  • 6 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp Red chili powder
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 2 tbsp Ghee
  • 1 tsp fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1 level tsp Salt or / to taste

Method :

Step 1.

Wash well and soak moong dal  and masoor dal for ten minutes in 500 ml of water.

Step 2.

Pressure cook on high flame the dals in the same water in which it was soaked, with salt, turmeric powder and the red chili powder. The moment full pressure is formed,Switch off the stove.Let the cooker cool down to room temperature, remove the cooked dal in to a serving bowl.

Step 2.

Heat the ghee in a pan. Add the cumin seeds, when cumin starts crackling add chopped onions sauté till golden. Add minced garlic saute till light golden add green chili.

Step 3.

Add this seasoning to the dal, simmer for two minutes, add lime juice and remove from heat. Serve hot.

Possible health benefits of Moong and Masoor dal:

Moong Dal:Moong dal is a dieter friendly dal. This type of dal has minimal calorie and is a rich source of iron and potassium.

moong dal is hailed has the healthiest among the dals. Others like masoor dal have health benefits too.

Masoor Dal : Masoor dal is very good for people suffering from bile reflux, and it also improves the blood circulation in the body.

Ref. http://www.boldsky.com/health/nutrition/2013/ten-types-of-dals-their-health-benefits-035300.html#slide20026

Good point of mixed dals:

  • Low in saturated fat
  • No cholesterol
  • Low in sugar
  • Very high in dietary fiber
  • High in iron
  • High in manganese
  • High in phosphorus
  • High in thiamin
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.

 

Matar/Green peas Samosas

Samosa Matarwala G

Matar/Green peas Samosas

Samosa : A samosa /səˈmsə/ or samoosa is a fried or baked pastry with savory filling, such as spiced potatoes, onions, peas, lentils and also with ground meat. They may or may not also contain pine nuts. The samosa originated in the Middle East (where it is known as sambosa) prior to the 10th century. Its size and consistency may vary, but typically it is distinctly triangular or tetrahedral in shape. Indian samosas are usually vegetarian, and often accompanied by a mint sauce or chutney. Vegetarian samosas originated in Uttar Pradesh. Samosas are a popular entree appetizer or snack in the local cuisines of Indian subcontinent, Southeast Asia, Central Asia and Southwest Asia, the Arabian Peninsula, the Mediterranean, the Horn of Africa and North Africa. Due to cultural diffusion and emigration from these areas, samosas are today also prepared in other regions. Alternative names :  Samsa, somsa, sambosak, sambusa, samoosa, singada, samuza, somasi, somaas

Ref.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samosa

Hi friends! Here is the recipe of a crispy and spicy, yummy Indian snack which is crisp  and filled with peas and spices.

Preparation time: 10 minutes.

Cooking time: 20-25 minutes

Cuisine : Indian

Course : Savory Snack

Ingredients:

For Pastry/ dough

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour/ Maida
  • 1 tbsp Semolina /sooji
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 1/2 tsp Ajwain/ Carom seeds
  • 1/2 tsp salt or / salt to taste
  • 1/4 cup warm water

For Filling:

  • 200 gms  frozen green peas, boiled
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tsp dry mango powder /amchoor
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt or/ to taste
  • 8-9 cashew nuts, coarsely ground

 Method:

For  pastry/ dough

Step 1.

In a bowl mix all-purpose flour/ Maida, Semolina /sooji, salt, ajwain /carom seeds, oil and mix well. Gradually add  warm water to make a soft dough (adding water as much required).

Step 2.

Knead the dough well to make it smooth and pliable.Cover the dough and keep aside for ten minutes.

For Filling

Step 1.

In a pressure cooker take green peas add 1/4 cup of water. On a high flame, when full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. When pressure cooker cools down to room temperature, open the lid and drain the water take out the peas in a bowl. keep the peas aside.

Step 2.

Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium heat, and put the coriander powder, chili powder, dry mango powder/ amchoor, gram masala, cashew nuts and salt. Saute for few seconds add green peas mix, stir fry and  mash the peas to get a coarse mixture. Cook on low flame for about 5-8 minutes. Switch off the stove.

Step 3.

Let the let the filling cool to room temperature. Keep aside.

For making samosas

Step1.

Before starting, knead the dough for a few seconds again.

Step 2.

Divide the dough into 6 equal parts and roll each portion of dough with a drop of oil on the rolling board, into a thin flat round shape with about 5 inch diameter.

Step 3.

Cut the rolled dough circle from the center into two halves with kinfe. Make each half into a cone by sticking seam together with a little water. Pinch gently the side of this cone so that it is completely sealed.

Step 4.

Fill the cone with about 1.5 tablespoons of the cooked pea mixture. Press this filling down gently.Close the slightly wet top of the cone edges to form a triangular shape, pinching the top edge to seal it completely.This way fill in all the samosas and keep ready on a tray.

Step 5.

Heat sufficient oil in a wok, kadahi /frying pan on medium heat. To check if oil is hot enough place a tiny piece of dough in oil and if dough come to the surface , oil is ready for frying.

Step 6.

Slide in the samosas in the hot oil one by one carefully,frying a few at a time. Samosas should not overlap in the frying pan.When samosas starts floating on top of the oil, slowly turn them .

Step 7.

Fry the samosas until the samosas are golden-brown on all sides. This should take about 5-6 minutes. Take the Samosas out over a  paper kitchen towel for removing extra oil.

Step 8.

Green Pea/ Matar samosas are ready to serve!  Serve hot as tea time snack with fresh coriander / dhaniya chutney.

Note:

  • If you use a high flame for frying, the samosa crust will remain soft and not cook properly.
  • Fresh shelled peas can be used too.
  • Raw Samosas can be made and refrigerated for two days
  • For a healthy snack, take just sufficient oil in the wok, kadahi /frying pan for frying the samosas and discard the used oil after frying.

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.

Mixed Vegetable fry

Mixed vegetable fryMixed vegetable

Mixed Vegetable fry

Hi friends! In Tamilnadu mixed vegetables with any vegetable are stir fried, served as a side dish for lunch or dinner with rice, dal and some curry. The vegetables that are used in this recipe are finely chopped, cooked and tossed with fresh grated coconut.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup green peas
  • 1/2 cup carrots, cut into tiny cubes
  • 1/2 cup French beans, finely chopped
  • 1 medium size potato, washed, peeled and cut into tiny cubes
  • 1 medium size Onion ,finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 3 tbsp Coconut , finely grated
  • 1/2 tsp Salt / or salt to taste

For seasoning

  • 1 tbsp Oil
  • 1/2 sp Mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp Split black gram /Urad dal
  • 1 red chili , Whole
  • 1 sprig Curry leaves
  • 1/4 tsp Asafetida

Method :

Step 1.

In a wok / kadahi / pan heat oil and add the mustard seeds. When the mustard starts crackling add asafetida, curry leaves and the dry red chili, split black gram dal.

Step 2.

Add onions to the step 1 seasoning. Sauté the onions and for a minute or till the onions are translucent.

Step 3.

Add the chopped beans, shelled peas, cubed carrots, and cubed carrots and salt. Cook the mixed vegetable covered till potatoes are soft and well cooked.

Step 4.

Finally add the fresh grated coconut, mix well with the cooked vegetable and switch off.

Step 5.

Mixed vegetable is tasty, nutritious as a side dish with boiled rice or pilafs.

The Health Benefits of Frozen Mixed Vegetables:

Frozen mixed vegetables provide convenience and nutrition.

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.

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.

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.

Preparation Tips

Combine mixed frozen 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 canned tomatoes. Alternatively, use them in a salad.

Ref. http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/health-benefits-frozen-mixed-vegetables-4299.html

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.

 

Khandvi

Khandvi

Easy Khandvi recipe

Khandvi is a savory snack in Gujarati cuisine. It consists of yellowish, tightly rolled bite-sized pieces, and is primarily made of gram flour and yoghurt.Khandvi is readily available across India, and is commonly eaten as an appetizer or snack. Many people choose to buy it from local shops rather than preparing it at home, though it is easy to make.In other parts of India, this dish is also known as Suralichi vadi or Patuli.

Hi friends! Gujarati khandvi, a delicious appetizer/ teatime snack is relished by all. It can be prepared easily .

Preparation Time: 5 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Cuisine: Indian, Gujrati

Course: Snack/ Appetizer

Serves: 2

Level : Easy

 Ingredients :

  • 1/2 cup Gram flour /Besan
  • 1/2 cup Curd
  • 2 tbsp Green coriander ,finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp Oil
  • 1 Green chili ,minced
  • 6 Curry leaves
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp Asafetida
  • 1/2 tsp Ginger paste
  • 1/2 level tsp salt /or as per taste

For tempering:

    • 1tabsp oil
    • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
    • 4-5 kadhi patta /curry leaves
    • 1 tbsp green coriander, finely chopped
    • 1/4 cup grated coconut

Method:

Step 1.

In a mixer jar take gram flour/ besan, curd, water, salt, turmeric, chili paste,  and make a smooth batter , without any lumps (batter can also be prepared in a bowl, by whisking it manually).

Step 2. 

Take the mixture in a non stick pan over high heat, and bring to a boil, stirring all the time ,to avoid scorching.

Step 3.

Keep cooking and stirring the mixture. It starts thickening, looking like a thick paste like consistency. Keep stirring continuously .

Step 4.

Mixture is ready, when a tsp of from it is spread on to an ungreased surface, and when cool, it should come off clean. mixture for making khandvi is now ready.

Step 5.

For spreading the cooked mixture, take a tray without greasing it with oil. With help of a spatula, spread the khandvi mixture over the tray very thinly. Within 15 to 20 minutes, batter cools and sets.

Step 6.

Now with a knife, cut the cooled khandvi spread into 6 inch long and 2 inch wide strips.Roll each strip like a scroll, as firmly as you can, without breaking them, make all the rolls and arrange  on a plate.

Step 7.

For tempering :

Now heat oil in a small pan. Chop the green chili lengthwise. When oil is sufficiently hot add mustard seeds into. when mustard seeds start crackling, add curry leaves . Spread this Seasoning /tadka over the khandvi .

Step 8.

Arrange them on to a serving dish. Garnish with the coriander, coconut and serve.

Step 9.

Tasty khandvi is now ready. Serve khandvi with coriander chutney/or ketchup or any chutney as per your taste.

Note:

  1. For making Khandvi mixture should be smooth, lump free.
  2. Sour curd / dahi / yogurt gives better results.
  3. The batter is cooked down to a thick paste and then spread thinly on a flat surface.
  4. It can be served hot or cold
  5. Besan flour is made from chickpeas.

Nutrient Facts for chickpeas / Gram flour /Besan Flour:

Besan flour, or gram flour, may not sound familiar until you hear its third name: chickpea flour. The characteristic nutty flavor from finely ground chickpeas gives besan flour the ability to create tasty, simple breads that stand on their own with few ingredients. It also stands above wheat flour in protein and folate content.

Basics

Besan flour is naturally higher in protein than wheat-based flours. One-half cup contains 10 grams of protein, compared to 8 grams in whole-grain wheat flour and just 6 grams in white flour. One-half cup of besan flour has 178 calories and 3 grams of total fat. Even though that’s double the fat of whole-wheat flour, 70 percent of the fat in besan flour comes from healthy unsaturated fats that can lower cholesterol. The same portion has 5 grams of fiber.

Vitamins

One-half cup of besan flour has 201 micrograms of folate, compared to 26 micrograms in whole-wheat flour and 182 micrograms in enriched white flour. If you consumed an entire half-cup of besan flour, you’d get 50 percent of the recommended daily intake of folate. This important vitamin is critical for the production of proteins and genetic material. In this role, folate is especially important during periods of rapid growth. When taken before and during pregnancy, it helps prevent birth defects of the brain and spinal cord. The same portion of besan flour is a good source of thiamin and vitamin B-6. Thiamin converts food into energy, while vitamin B-6 is needed for the synthesis of red blood cells and the neurotransmitter serotonin that regulates appetite and mood.

Minerals

Besan flour delivers a boost of iron, magnesium and phosphorus. Well known for its role carrying oxygen, iron also functions as an antioxidant and it’s needed for the production of collagen. Magnesium causes muscles to relax, which helps maintain vascular health and regulates blood pressure. Phosphorus combines with calcium to form the primary compound used to build bones. It also carries lipids through the body and activates enzymes that produce energy. One-half cup of besan flour has 2 milligrams of iron, 76 milligrams of magnesium and 146 milligrams of phosphorus.

Preparation Tips

Besan flour is usually mixed with water, olive oil, yogurt or milk to make a paste that can be any consistency depending on the desired use. The paste is seasoned with any combination of parsley, cumin, coriander, turmeric, red chili, rosemary, onion or garlic. It’s traditionally cooked in a skillet to create a flatbread called socca or fried into fritters. Use a thick besan flour batter to coat and fry vegetables or add small shrimps to a thin batter and fry them into appetizer-like pancakes.

Gluten Free

Besan flour doesn’t contain gluten, so it makes a good substitute for wheat flour in gluten-free diets. Depending on the food you’re making, the bean taste may not create the best result. Try mixing besan flour with white rice flour, making sure that the total amount is the same that’s called for in the recipe. You’ll probably need to adjust the fluids to create the same consistency achieved with wheat flour. If you’re making yeast dough, you’ll need to add about 1 teaspoon of guar or xanthan gum for every 1 cup of flour so that the yeast can rise.

Ref. http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/nutrient-besan-flour-3167.html

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.

 

 

Carrot Barfi

Carrot barfiCarrot / Gajar Barfi

Barfi or burfi is a sweet confectionery from the Indian Subcontinent. The name originates from the Persian word Barf which means snow. The confection is served in India, all year round, it has many varieties. Main ingredients of plain barfis include condensed milk and sugar. The ingredients are cooked in a vessel until the mixture solidifies.

Hi friends!Make this yummy barfi very easy to make and very delicious.

Preparation Time : 5-10 minutes

Cooking time : 20-25 minutes

Servings : 6-8

Cuisine: Indian

Course: Indian Desserts

Level Of Cooking: Easy

Ingredients:

  • 500 gms Carrots, grated
  • 150 gms Khoya/mawa, grated
  • 500 ml Milk
  • 2/3 cup Sugar
  • 2 tbsp Almonds, powdered
  • 2 tbsp Almonds , slivered
  • 1/2 tsp Ghee for greasing
  • 6 Green cardamoms, powdered

Method :

Step 1.

Wash, peel and grate the Carrots.

Step 2.

In a wok / kadahi/ heavy bottom pan take milk and add grated carrots, and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat and let the carrots cook on low flame till 90 % milk is absorbed.

Step 3.

Add grated khoya, cardamom powder and sugar. Mix well and cook for five to ten minutes or till mixture thickens. Add powdered almonds to the mix.

Step 4.

Grease an aluminum tray with ghee or take a non stick tray. Switch off the stove, pour the carrot mix into the tray and spread evenly.

Step 5.

You can even keep it in the refrigerator to set. Decorate chopped nuts and set aside for cooling.

Step 6.

Cut into squares and decorate each square with a slivered almond and serve.

 Possible health benefits of Carrots:

Prevention of Heart Disease: High cholesterol is a major factor for heart disease. Since regular consumption of carrots reduces cholesterol levels, it is a good idea to consume a healthy dose of carrots, in order to prevent heart-related problems.

Blood Pressure: Carrots are rich sources of potassium, which is a vasodilator and can relax the tension in your blood vessels and arteries, thereby increasing blood flow and circulation, boosting organ function throughout the body and reducing the stress on the cardiovascular system.

Immune Booster:  Carrots contain a number of antiseptic and antibacterial abilities that make it ideal for boosting the immune system. Not only that, carrots are a rich source of vitamin C, which stimulates the activity of white blood cells and is one of the most important elements in the human immune system.

Digestion: Carrots, like most vegetables, have significant amounts of dietary fiber in those orange roots, and fiber is one of the most important elements in maintaining good digestive health.

Prevents Cancer: Beta-carotene consumption has been linked to a reduced risk of several cancers, notably lung cancer.

Improves Eyesight: Deficiency of vitamin A can cause some difficulty seeing in dim light. Since carrots are rich in vitamin A, it is good for improving eyesight and preventing conditions like night blindness from developing as we age.

Oral Health: The organic compounds in carrots all by themselves are good for mineral antioxidants, but carrots also stimulate the gums and induce excess saliva. Saliva is an alkaline substance and combats the bacteria and foreign bodies that can often result in cavities, halitosis, and other oral health risks.

Stroke: Eating a carrot every day reduces the risk of stroke by 68%. Many studies have strengthened the belief in the “carrot effect” on the brain. Studies conducted on stroke patients revealed that those with highest levels of beta-carotene had the highest survival rate.

Diabetes: Carrots are good for blood sugar regulation due to the presence of carotenoids in this delicious vegetable. Carotenoids inversely affect insulin resistance and thus lower blood sugar, thereby helping diabetic patients live a normal, healthy life. They also regulate the amount of insulin and glucose that is being used and metabolized by the body, providing a more even and healthy fluctuation for diabetic patients.

Ref. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/vegetable/carrots.html

Nick’s kitchen 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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Olive oil dip

Garlic dip G      Toasted brown breadGarlic herb dip bread fingers

A dip can be prepared with sour cream, hung curd, olive oil, softened cheese, and/or mayonnaise with herbs and spices added.A dip or dipping sauce is a common condiment for many types of food. Dips are used to add flavor or texture to a food, such as pita bread, dumplings, crackers, cut-up raw vegetables, seafood, cubed pieces of meat and cheese, potato chips, tortilla chips, and falafel. Unlike other sauces, instead of applying the sauce to the food, the food is typically put, dipped, or added into the dipping sauce (hence the name). Dips are commonly used for finger foods, appetizers, and other easily held foods. Thick dips based on sour cream, crème fraiche, milk, yogurt, mayonnaise, soft cheese, or beans are a staple of American hors d’oeuvres and are thinner than spreads which can be thinned to make dips. Dip is a very widespread food, and various forms of dip are eaten all over the world. People have been using sauces for dipping for thousands of years.

Hi friends! Dip:A mixture of ingredients that complements other foods such as raw vegetables, chips, or toast, which are dipped into it. Enjoy this yummy dip on toasted bread fingers.

Ingredients:

  • 6 tablespoons oil extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vinegar ( I used apple cider)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 sp sugar
  • 1/2 sp Oregano
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper , freshly -ground
  • 9 cloves of garlic, minced

Method:

Step 1.

In a bowl take olive oil, vinegar, salt, sugar , oregano and pepper whisk all ingredients together in a in a small bowl.

Step 2.

When the mixture starts thickening add minced garlic and whisk some more.

Step 3.

Let the mixture stand for five minutes to rehydrate dried herbs and blend flavors. Mix again and use the delicious dip on toasted bread fingers( toast a brown bread slice in a sandwich toaster, cut into fingers). spread the dip on the fingers or dip the fingers and eat.

Health Benefits of Olive Oil & Bread

Eating fresh whole grain bread dipping in extra virgin olive oil as a side dish with dinner or as a light healthy snack or appetizer can provide health benefits such as:

  • A Healthy Cardiovascular System
  • Reduction in Strokes, Heart Attacks, and High Blood Pressure and Cholesterol
  • Natural Inflammation Relief
  • Younger Youthful Skin, Nails and Hair
  • A Stronger Healthy Immune System
  • Natural Prevention Against Certain Types of Cancers such as Digestive, Respiratory, Brain and Reproductive Kinds
  • Keeps the Mind Healthy and Strong by Enhancing Memory and Reducing Oxidative Stress

Ref.http://www.naturalnewsblogs.com/bread-dipped-extra-virgin-olive-provides-outstanding-health-benefits/

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.

 

Masaledar Lobiya Curry

Blackeyed beans curry 5

Masaledar Black eyed pea /cow pea /
Lobiya Curry

The black-eyed pea, also known as the cow pea, is thought to have originated in North Africa, where it has been eaten for centuries. It may have been introduced into India as long as 3,000 years ago, and was also a staple of Greek and Roman diets. The peas were brought to the New World by Spanish explorers and African slaves. The earliest records are from 1674 when they were introduced to the West Indies. They have become a common food in the southern United States, where they are available dried, fresh, canned, and frozen. 

Prep time : Soaking the beans over night

Pressure Cooking time : 15 minutes

Cooking time : 30 minutes

 Recipe type: main dish

Cuisine: north Indian

Ingredients :

  • 1 cup lobia /black eyed beans
  • 1 tbsp ginger finely grated
  • 15 garlic flakes crushed
  • 2 medium sized onion chopped
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped coriander leaves
  • ½ tsp of fenugreek seeds
  • 3 medium size tomatoes chopped
  • a small pinch of cinnamon powder
  • 2 tsp coriander powder/dhania powder
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder/haldi
  • 2 red chilies whole
  • 2 cloves
  • 5 cups of water
  • 4 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp salt / or salt to taste
  • 1 small black cardamom powdered

Method :

Step 1.

Soak the lobia/ Black eyed beans overnight or for a few hours.

Step 2.

Now take the soaked lobia / Black eyed beans, four cups of water, salt and keep the pressure cooker on high flame till pressure is formed. After the pressure is formed cook on low flame for fifteen minutes switch off the stove, cool and check, beans will be soft.  Set aside with the cooking liquid.

Step 3.

While the lobia /black eyed beans are cooking, heat two table spoons of oil in a pan ,add onions and sauté on medium-low heat for about ten minutes until the onions are slightly golden brown add tomatoes,  grated ginger , crushed garlic and cook for 5-6 minutes switch off the stove, cool the fried onion,tomatoes and ginger , garlic.Grind into a smooth paste in a grinder. Keep the paste aside.

Step 4.

In a separate pan, heat the remaining one tbsp of oil, and add the cumin seeds, wait till cumin crackles, add fenugreek  seeds, black cardamom powder, cloves, cinnamon, dried red chillies.  Fry the spices in the oil for one or two minutes or so (over frying will change the taste) cool and then transfer into a mortar.  Grind into a coarse paste.

Step 5.

In a separate sauce pan, heat the remaining one tbsp of oil, add tomato, ginger , garlic , onion paste from step 3. Saute this paste for two minutes on medium flame, add coarsely ground spice paste to it along with turmeric, coriander powder, fry for one or two minutes.

Step 6.

Add the lobia / Black eyed beans with its water into the above fried masala in the saucepan.  Add a little more water if needed. Cover and bring to boil, then simmer for at least ten to fifteen minutes.

Step 7.

Serve hot , garnished with finely chopped Dhaniya / Coriander/ Cilantro leaves with Indian breads like Chapattis, parathas etc. and boiled rice.

 Possible Health Benefits of Black-eyed peas/ Cow peas / lobiya:

Black-eyed peas have so many health benefits here are a few of them:

  • Aids the digestive system and the colon: Due to its high fiber content it helps with elimination and keeps cancer at bay. Fiber is a nutrient that helps regulate your digestive system, and increasing your intake could help alleviate constipation and symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. Fiber also helps keep your cholesterol levels healthy by preventing cholesterol from being absorbed into your bloodstream, which reduces your risk of developing heart disease. Additionally, high-fiber foods keep you feeling full, since they are digested slowly — which is important for weight control.
  • Good for the heart: It contains fiber, flavonoids no cholesterol and therefore is advantageous for the heart.
  • Good for the stomach: It helps with problems associated with the stomach, pancreas as well as spleen.
  • Helps in weight loss: Low in fat and calories makes them a nutritious accessory for a weight-loss diet plan. A diet which is lower in fat and calories can help you slim down, avoids putting on weight and safeguards you from numerous health problems, which includes cardiovascular disease, diabetes and also depressive disorders.
  • Helps with the bladder: It has been confirmed to be useful in reducing blockages or even discomfort related to urination problems.
  • Lowers cholesterol level: Cowpeas are well known because of their capability to reduce the plasma cholesterol within your body. This really is aided by them being recognized like an excellent method of obtaining proteins as well as dietary fibers, and it has a comparatively lower glycemic index.
  • Rich in anti-oxidants: The anti-oxidation property restricts the growth of the cancerous cells within the body.

Ref.https://godshealingplants.wordpress.com/2013/12/30/black-eyed-peas-health-benefits/

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.

 

Lasooni Palak Aloo

Aloo palak lahsunwala copy

Lasooni Aloo Palak/ Spinach, potatoes with Garlic, easy to cook and simply delicious !

Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Servings: 4

Preparation Time: 10-15 minutes

Category: Veg

Cuisine: North Indian

Ingredients:

  • 500 gms Spinach/ Palak
  • 2 medium size potatoes
  • 1/2 cup curd/ Dahi / Yogurt
  • 15 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida/ hing powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1pinch baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp Asafetida
  • 2/3 tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp Olive oil

 Method:

Step 1.

Wash the spinach very well, finely chop and keep aside.

Step 2.

Wash, peel and cut potatoes into small cubes, keep aside.

Step 3.

Heat the oil in a wok / kadahi and add the Asafetida. Fry for few seconds till pink in colour.

Step 4.

Add crushed garlic paste to the asafetida seasoning. Saute till slight change in colour, about half a minute.

Step 5.

Add in the spinach, potatoes, salt , red chili powder and baking soda . Cover and cook on a slow flame for ten minutes on low flame or till potatoes are tender.

Step 6.

Add whisked curd / Dahi / Yogurt , mix well. Cook for ten minutes or so on low flame till it is well blended . Serve hot with chapattis or any other Indian bread of choice.

Health benefits of Spinach / Palak:

Spinach is an excellent food loaded with tons of nutrients and a low calorie package. Greens like spinach are important for skin and hair, bone health, and provide protein, iron, vitamins and minerals.

As per studies the possible health benefits of consuming spinach include improving blood glucose control in diabetics, lowering the risk of cancer, lowering blood pressure, improving bone health, lowering the risk of developing asthma and more.

Ref. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/270609.php

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.

 

 

Moong Dal Halwa

Moong Dal Halwa1 Moong Dal Halwa 2 Moong Dal HalwaMoong Dal Halwa

Halva (halawa, alva, haleweh, halava, helava, helva, halwa, halua, aluva, chalva) refers to many types of dense, sweet confections, served across the Middle East, South Asia, Central Asia, West Asia, North Africa, the Horn of Africa, the Balkans, Central Europe, Eastern Europe, Malta and the Jewish world.Halva may also be based on numerous other ingredients, including sunflower seeds, various nuts, beans, lentils, and vegetables such as carrots, pumpkins, yams and squashes.

The mung bean (Vigna radiata), alternatively known as the moong bean, green gram, or mung Sanskrit मुद्ग / mudga, is a plant species in the legume family. Themung bean is mainly cultivated in India, China, and Southeast Asia.

Hi friends! Halwa made from moong dal and flavored with cardamom, saffron and almonds. It’s a traditional Indian winter dessert.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup split husked green lentil /yellow Moong dal
  • 150 gms Mawa / Khoya, grated
  • 1/2 cup pure ghee (cow’s milk ghee)
  • 1 level cup sugar
  • 6 Green cardamoms, powdered
  • Pinch of saffron
  • 1cup of water
  • 1 cup of milk (low fat)
  • 2 tbsp almonds powder
  • 2 tbsp of slivered almonds (sliced almonds) for garnish

Method:

Step 1.

Soak the moong dal or husked green lentil, in enough water overnight or for 5 to 6hours, drain and grind the  moong dal or husked green lentil to a slightly coarse paste with adding just enough water as needed to blend. Keep aside.

Step 2.

Melt ghee in a non stick wok/ pan, add the ground moong dal mixwell.Stir fry over low flame till fried well, approximately 20-25 minutes.Mixture in the first stage of frying is pasty, then starts getting lumpy and then starts breaking down and getting separated with the fat releasing from the sides, break the lumps while stirring.

Step 3.

In a non stick pan on low flame friy the grated mawa/ khoya. Mix it with the fried moong dal.

Step 4.

While the moong dal is getting fried, heat one cup of water and one cup of milk. Add sugar, saffron and green cardamom powder to the mixture. Bring it to a boil to dissolve the sugar, and keep hot till needed.

Step 5.

Add milk mixture to the fried dal mix and stir well to blend it , the mixture sizzles, so gently add the hot milk and water mixture.

Step 6.
Cook over medium low flame till the liquid is absorbed, and stir-fry till the fat separates and mixture leaves the sides of the pan / wok.Transfer on to a serving dish, decorate the Moong Dal Halwa with the lightly roasted slivered almonds and serve hot.

Possible health benefits of Moong dal:
It is used for making the legendary dal tadka and dal fry. It is eaten on a regular basis in every indian household in combination with rice and vegetables. Moong dal is a dieter-friendly dal rich in iron and potassium. Iron helps maintain haemoglobin levels and potassium helps reduce blood pressure, a boon for hypertensive people. It is extremely light and can be easily eaten when you fall ill and even by pregnant women. Moong dal is used for making soups, stews and purees. Boiled moong dal is also used for making delicious spicy parathas.

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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bottle gourd Barfi

Lauki Barfi 1

Lauki/bottle gourd Barfi

Barfi or burfi is a sweet confectionery from the Indian Subcontinent. The name originates from the Persian word Barf which means snow. The confection is served in India, all year round, it has many varieties. Main ingredients of plain barfis include condensed milk and sugar. The ingredients are cooked in a vessel until the mixture solidifies.

Hi friends!Here is the recipe of a yummilicious bottle gourd barfi . It is easy to make and is very tasty to eat!

Preparation Time : 5-10 minutes

Cooking time : 20-25 minutes

Servings : 6-8

Cuisine: Indian

Course: Indian Desserts

Level Of Cooking: Easy

Ingredients:

  • 500 gms Bottle gourd /lauki/Ghiya, grated
  • 150 gms Khoya/mawa, grated
  • 500 ml Milk
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 10 Almonds
  • 10 Cashews
  • 15 Pistachoos
  • 1/2 tsp Ghee for greasing
  • 6 Green cardamoms, powdered

Method :

Step 1.

Wash, peel and grate the Bottle gourd /lauki/Ghiya.

Step 2.

In a wok / kadahi/ heavy bottom pan take milk and add grated Bottle gourd /lauki/Ghiya, and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat and let the Bottle gourd /lauki/Ghiya cook on low flame till 90 % milk is absorbed.

Step 3.

Add khoya, cardamom powder and sugar. Mix well and cook for five to ten minutes or till mixture thickens. Add slivered almonds, cashews, and pistachios to the mix.

Step 4.

Grease an aluminum tray with ghee. Remove from heat, pour into the greased tray and spread evenly.

Step 5.

Sprinkle chopped nuts and set aside for cooling.

Step 6.

Cut into squares and serve.

 Possible health benefits of Bottle gourd /lauki/Ghiya:

In fact, traditional healers recommended consumption of this bottle gourd to treat various conditions. Here are some of its benefits you must know.

Aids digestion: People suffering from constipation should eat bottle gourd as it is high in fibre and helps clear the food stuck in your colon. Additionally, juice made out of bottle gourd also helps in the treatment of acidity as it is alkaline in nature [1].

Great for weight loss Bottle gourd is one of the best foods you can have if you want to lose weight as it is 96% water, and a 100g serving contains as little as 12 calories. The high fibre content will take care of your hunger, and keep you feeling full.

Helps treat urinary disorders Bottle gourd has a cooling effect on your body, and a glass of bottle gourd juice is a great diuretic that can be used to treat burning sensation while passing urine. This burning sensation is caused due to high levels of acid in the urine, which can be countered by the alkaline nature of bottle gourd juice.

Refreshes you during summers: Just like cucumber, bottle gourd too has a high amount of water which keeps you hydrated during summers. Drinking a glass of its juice will ensure that you do not face loss of sodium, fatigue or extreme thirst while you are out in the sun. This makes it great for people whose jobs require them to travel in daylight.

Prevents heart disease: Unhealthy lifestyles are leading to several cases of heart disease in urban India. So much so that, 70% of the urban population is at risk of heart disease due to wrong lifestyle choices like eating fried and processed foods, smoking, etc. Like a lot of fruits and vegetables, bottle gourd has zero cholesterol and is rich in vitamins like vitamin C and antioxidants making it good for your heart [3].

Reduces stress It is quite easy to feel stressed in today’s times, and unhealthy eating can only worsen the situation. Bottle gourd has a high water content has a cooling effect on your body which makes you feel better the very moment you take it. It also has diuretic, sedative and antibilious properties which makes your body feel better internally, and keeps stress at bay.

Ref. http://www.thehealthsite.com/fitness/health-benefits-lauki-dudhi-bottle-gourds-sa114/

Nick’s kitchen 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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Mawa Gujiya

Mawa Gujia

Mawa Gujiya

Mawa/Khoa
Khoa is a dairy product widely used in South Asian cuisine of India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan. It is made of either dried whole milk or milk thickened by heating in an open iron pan. Wikipedia
 Region or state: Indian subcontinent

Hi friends! An all time favorite and delicious snack you can have round the year and not only for Holi!

Preparation Time : 20 minutes

Cooking time : 15 minutes

Provides : 18 Gujias

Cuisine: Indian

Course: Indian desserts

Type: Dumpling

Level Of Cooking: Easy

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all purpose flour/ maida
  • 250 gms Khoya/mawa , grated
  • 1/4 cup Ghee / olive oil
  • 10 almonds, coarsely powdered
  • 12 Cashew nuts ,coarsely powdered
  • 12 Pistachios, coarsely powdered
  • Oil for deep frying
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 6 Green cardamoms, powdered

Method :

Step 1.

Dough for Gujia Pastry:

Sift the flour into a big mixing bowl, rub 1/4 cup ghee / olive oil into the flour with your finger tips till the mixture resembles breadcrumbs and knead into a firm dough with milk. Cover with a damp kitchen napkin and leave to rest for at least half an hour.
Step 2.

For the filling:

Heat a non-stick pan add the grated khoya/ mawa and Sauté the khoya/ mawa over medium heat till it looks slightly fried. Mix in the sugar, cardamom powder, almonds, cashew and pistachios.

Step 3 .

Take off the heat and when it cools, and divide into eighteen equal portions.

Step 4.

For Gujias:

Divide the dough into eighteen equal portions and shape into balls. Roll out into thin rounds, like a puri.

Step 5.

Place one portion of the stuffing on one half of the rolled round /puri, lightly moisten the edges, fold the other half over the stuffing and press the edges to seal. Either cut off the edge with a fancy cutter or pinch the edges with the tip of a fork to make a design.

Step 6.

Make all the gujiyas in this way. keep aside

Step 7.

Heat sufficient oil in a wok /kadahi. To check if the oil is ready for frying, put a tiny piece of dough in it. If it comes up at once, add gently slide in a few gujiya at a time. Add as many gujiyas as fit in comfortably and deep-fry for five to six minutes.

Step 8.

Turn them over and lower the heat to medium. Fry till golden brown on all sides. Lift out and leave to drain on absorbent kitchen paper towel , cool and store in an airtight container when completely cold.

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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Mushroom Peas Curry

Mater Mushroom

Green peas and mushrooms cooked to a delicious gravy.

Mushrooms, though classified as vegetables in the food world, are not technically plants. They belong to the fungi kingdom and although they are not vegetables, mushrooms provide several important nutrients. Mushrooms are naturally low in sodium, fat, cholesterol, and calories and have often been referred to as “functional foods.” In addition to providing basic nutrition, they help prevent chronic disease due to the presence of antioxidants and beneficial dietary fibers such as chitin and beta-glucans.

Preparation Time : 15-20 minutes

Cooking time : 15 minutes

Servings : 4

Cuisine: North Indian

Course: Main Course

Level Of Cooking: Easy

Ingredients:

  • 200 gms Button mushrooms , finely sliced
  • 1 cup green peas, fresh or frozen
  • 2 medium size Onions, cut into small pieces
  • 2 medium size Tomatoes
  • 8-9 Cashew nuts, finely powdered
  • 12 Peppercorns, finely powdered
  • 1/4 tsp Cinnamon powder
  • 3 Clove, powdered
  • 1 tsp Fennel / saunf seeds, powdered
  • 1 Green cardamom, finely powdered
  • 3 Green chillies
  • 1 tsp Ginger paste
  • 1 tsp Garlic paste
  • 1/4 tsp Red chilli powder
  • 1 level tsp Salt or to taste
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil

Method:

Step 1.

Wash, clean and slice the mushrooms. In a pressure cooker, add sliced mushrooms and 1/4 cup of water. On a high flame, when full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. Once the pressure cooker cools down to room temperature, open the lid and keep the mushrooms aside.

Step 2.

In a pressure cooker take green peas add 1/4 cup of water. On a high flame once full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. When the pressure cooker cools down to room temperature, open the lid and keep the peas aside.

Step 3.

Cut each tomato in two halves. In a pressure cooker add the cut tomatoes and 1/4 cup of water. On a high flame when full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. When pressure cooker cools down to room temperature, open the lid and take out the tomatoes in a small bowl. Remove the skin from all four pieces with a fork and put them into a blender. Add finely chopped green chillies and cashew powder to it and blend the mix. Keep aside.

Step 4.

Cut the onions into small pieces. Put in the pressure cooker with 1/4 cup of water. On a high flame when full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. Once the pressure cooker cools down to room temperature, open the lid and take out the onions into a blender jar. Blend the onions in to a fine paste and keep  aside.

Step 5.

Heat oil in a wok/ pan / kadhai. Add green cardamom, cinnamon, black pepper, fennel / saunf powder and sauté lightly, till fragrant. Add the onion paste and sauté for 5-8 minutes on medium flame. Add ginger and garlic paste and sauté for a minute or so.

Step 6.

Add blanched tomatoes, cashew nut powder and green chillies paste. Cook for five to seven minutes on low heat. Add salt and red chili powder, mix well. Add 1 cup of water and bring it to a boil. To this, add the mushrooms, peas. Mix well and cook for another 5-7 minutes on low heat.

Step 7.

Serve hot with any Indian bread of your choice.

Possible health benefits of mushrooms:

Consuming fruits and vegetables of all kinds has long been associated with a reduced risk of many lifestyle-related health conditions. Countless studies have suggested that increasing consumption of naturally-grown foods like mushrooms decreases the risk of obesity and overall mortality, diabetes, heart disease and promotes a healthy complexion and hair, increased energy, and overall lower weight.

Cancer: Mushrooms contain just as high an antioxidant capacity as carrots, tomatoes, green and red peppers, pumpkins, green beans, and zucchini.4

Selenium is a mineral that is not present in most fruits and vegetables but can be found in mushrooms. It plays a role in liver enzyme function, and helps detoxify some cancer-causing compounds in the body. Additionally, selenium prevents inflammation and also decreases tumor growth rates.2

The vitamin D in mushrooms has also been shown to inhibit the growth of cancer cells by contributing to the regulation of the cell growth cycle. The folate in mushrooms plays an important role in DNA synthesis and repair, thus preventing the formation of cancer cells from mutations in the DNA.2

Diabetes: Studies have shown that type 1 diabetics who consume high-fiber diets have lower blood glucose levels and type 2 diabetics may have improved blood sugar, lipids and insulin levels. One cup of grilled portabella mushrooms and one cup of stir-fried shiitake mushrooms both provide about 3 grams of fiber.

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends 21-25 g/day for women and 30-38 g/day for men.

Heart health: The fiber, potassium and vitamin C content in mushrooms all contribute to cardiovascular health. Potassium and sodium work together in the body to help regulate blood pressure. Consuming mushrooms, which are high in potassium and low in sodium helps to lower blood pressure and decrease the risk of high blood pressure and cardiovascular diseases.

Additionally, an intake of 3 grams of beta-glucans per day can lower blood cholesterol levels by 5%.3

Immunity: Selenium has also been found to improve immune response to infection by stimulating production of killer T-cells. The beta-glucan fibers found in the cell walls of mushrooms stimulate the immune system to fight cancer cells and prevent tumors from forming.3

Weight management and satiety: Dietary fiber plays an important role in weight management by functioning as a “bulking agent” in the digestive system. Mushrooms contain two types of dietary fibers in their cell walls: beta-glucans and chitin which increase satiety and reduce appetite, making you feel fuller longer and thereby lowering your overall calorie intake.3

Ref.http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/278858.php

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.

 

 

Appam Dahi Vadas

Appam dahi Vadas 2Khara appam 3

Appam Dahi Vadas

Hi friends!Here is a simple,delicious and very healthy recipe of an Indian side dish of yogurt containing steamed lentil balls and spices.

 All varieties of dals/ lentils can be added to make Appam vadas nutritious.

Course: Appetizer

Cuisine: Indian

Category: Vegetarian

Serves : 6- 8

 Ingredients:

 For Appams

  • 1/2 cup Black gram dal (husked)
  • 1/2 cup Moong dal (husked)
  • 1/4 cup Rice flour or raw rice 2 table spoons soaked
  • 1/4 level tsp Asafetida powder
  • 2-3 Green chilies
  • 8 to 10 Curry leaves, finely choped
  • 1tsp Ginger, finely grated
  • 1 tsp level salt / or Salt as per taste
  • 1/4 tsp Baking soda
  • Olive oil for lining the appam skillet before Cooking

For the Dahi / curd / Yogurt

  • 4 cups chilled Dahi / curd / Yogurt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Black salt
  • 1 level tsp salt or / salt as per taste
  • 1/4 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper powder
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds, roasted and powdered
  • 2 tbsp coriander/ cilantro/ dhaniya leaves, finely chopped

Method:

Step 1.

Wash the two dals /lentils,raw rice (if rice powder is being used then no soaking of raw rice required) very well and soak in water together for overnight.

Step 2.

Grind soaked dals / lentils and rice, fenugreek seeds and finely chopped curry leaves, green chilies in a grinder, adding water slowly (so a minimum quantity is used), to a thick consistency batter.  Transfer the batter to a mixing bowl, add salt mix well. Keep it for fermenting for 2-3 hours.

Step 3.

Take a table spoon of oil in a pan , heat the oil add asafetida wait for a few seconds for it to turn pink, switch of the stove. Add this tempering to the batter. Mix rice flour (if no previously soaked raw rice added), salt, and baking soda in the dal batter, and mix well. Keep it aside for few minutes.

Step 4.

Place an appam skillet applying  or spraying oil to all the molds of the skillet.  When heated, fill in all the moulds of the skillet one by one and cover the skillet with a lid.

Step 5.                                         

After few minutes check if appams are cooked by inserting in a knife in the appams, if it comes out clean, appams are ready on one side. Flip each appam to cook on the reverse side, spraying or adding a drop of oil to each mould.

Step 6.

When cooked both sides to a light golden colour, remove from the skillet and soak in hot water.

Step 7.

Let the appams stand in hot water till water cools. Squeeze out water from appams and arrange in a serving dish.

Step 8.

Whisk yogurt add salt, black salt, roasted cumin powder, black pepper and red chili powder and mix it well. Pour the yogurt mix over the ready appams in the serving dish.

Step 9.

Garnished with finely chopped coriander leaves and serve cold.

Health benefits of Lentils/ Dals:

Lentils / dals are higher in fiber content, extremely rich in soluble fiber, which helps the digestive system.

Lentils prove to be significant for a healthy heart as they prevent heart coronary problems. It also helps in eliminating and reducing blood cholesterol levels. Besides fiber which contributes to the health of the cardiovascular system, lentils contain folic acid and magnesium, significant for reducing the level of homocysteine, a compound known to be dangerous for the heart and artery walls. Also, lentils promote better blood flow and passage of oxygen and nutrients to the organs.

The soluble fiber in lentils has the property of trapping carbohydrates. It slows down the digestion and absorption process, hence preventing major changes in blood sugar level throughout the day. This helps diabetic patients.

Lentils are rich in flavones, a class of antioxidants with antioxidant properties.

Lentils increase energy levels by replenishing iron reserves in the body.

Ref. http://nutrition.indobase.com/articles/lentils-nutrition.php

Health benefits Curd:

Being rich in calcium, curd is good for the health of bones as well as the teeth. For those who have difficulty in the digestion of lactose in milk, yogurt is an important source of calcium. Curd contains an enzyme which breaks down lactose to aid proper digestion.

Curd / Yogurt is rich in vitamin D which helps our body to absorb and use calcium.

Curd / Yogurt helps you feel fuller and is thus, a very good snack for those trying to lose weight.

Eating  curd / yogurt on a regular basis can help absorb the nutrients in other foods as well.

Ref. http://www.thehealthsite.com/fitness/9-reasons-curd-is-great-for-your-health/

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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Creamy Peas Soup

Pea soupCreamy Peas Soup

The green peas are not taken as an exotic food in terms of nutrient composition as green peas do contain some sugar and starch . But they also contain a unique assortment of health-protective phytonutrients.  Since one cup of green peas contains at least 10 milligrams of coumestrol, it’s not difficult for us to obtain this remarkable health benefit.

Hi friends ! Please try peas soup this winter. The green peas soup is very delicious and really easy to make.

Prep time: 7 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

Cuisine: North Indian

Course: Soups

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 cup  green peas (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 tbsp All purpose flour / Maida
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • 2 cups Milk (low fat)
  • 2/3 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper, freshly ground
  • 2 cups water
  • 8 Mint leaves, for garnishing

Method:

Step 1.

In a pressure cooker place the shelled peas with 1/2 cup of water. Close the lid and pressure cook on high flame. The moment full pressure is formed, switch the stove off. Let the cooker cool down to room temperature, and take out the peas in a bowl.

Step 2.

Use a blender to puree the steamed peas. Set aside.

Step 3.

Place a saucepan over medium-high heat and add butter. When hot, add the crushed garlic and sauté for 50 seconds.

Step 4.

Add  maida/all purpose flour. Stir and cook the butter-flour mixture/roux over low heat with a wooden spoon.

Step 5.

Once it gets the sandy texture, add cold milk and bring it to a boil, stirring continuously to avoid lumps.

Step 6.

Simmer gently for two minutes. Add pureed peas, salt and pepper powder and mix well. Serve hot, garnished with a pair of fresh mint leaves.

Health benefits of green peas:

  • Green peas are one of the most nutritious leguminous vegetables rich in health benefiting phyto-nutrients, minerals, vitamins and anti-oxidants.
  • Fresh, tender peas are relatively low in calories on comparison to beans, and cowpeas. 100 g of green peas carry just 81 calories, and no cholesterol. Nonetheless, they are a good source of protein, and soluble as well as insoluble fiber.
  • Fresh pea pods are an excellent source of folic acid. 100 g provides 65 µg or 16% of recommended daily levels of folates. Folates are one of the B-complex vitamins required for DNA synthesis inside the cell. Studies suggest that adequate folate rich foods when given in expectant mothers would help prevent neural tube defects in the newborn babies.
  • Fresh green peas are very good in ascorbic acid (vitamin C). 100 g of fresh pods carry 40 mg or 67% of daily requirement of vitamin C. Vitamin C is a powerful natural water-soluble anti-oxidant. Vegetables rich in this vitamin help human body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful, pro-inflammatory free radicals from the body.
  • Peas contain phytosterols, especially ß-sitosterol. Studies suggest that vegetables like legumes, fruits and cereals rich in plant sterols help lower cholesterol levels inside the human body.
  • Garden peas are also good in vitamin K. 100 g of fresh seeds contain about 24.8 µg or about 21% of daily requirement of vitamin K-1 (phylloquinone). Vitamin K has been found to have a potential role in bone mass building function (mineralization) through promotion of osteotrophic activity inside the bone cells. It also has established role in Alzheimer’s disease patients by limiting neuronal damage inside the brain.
  • Fresh green peas also carry adequate amounts of anti-oxidants flavonoids such as carotenes, lutein and zea-xanthin as well as vitamin-A (provide 765 IU or 25.5% of RDA per 100 g). Vitamin A is an essential nutrient required for maintaining healthy membranes, skin and eye-sight. Additionally, consumption of natural fruits/vegetables rich in flavonoids helps to protect from lung and oral cavity cancers.
  • In addition to folates, peas are also good in many other essential B-complex vitamins such as pantothenic acid, niacin, thiamin, and pyridoxine. Furthermore, they are rich source of many minerals such as calcium, iron, copper, zinc, and manganese.

Ref.http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/green-peas.html

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.

 

 

Bottle gourd Halwa

Lauki Halwa Arch

Lauki /bottle gourd Halwa

Locally known as “Lauki” (Hindi) or “Sorakkai” (Tamil), this veggie is not that popular in the western world.Found in every kitchen of the Indian household, bottle gourd believed to have originated in Africa, constitutes a major part of food in the Indian cuisine. Like it or not, this gourd has dominated the domestic main course menu for time immemorial.

Hi friends! Try this easy recipe to make  lauki halwa , it is simply delicious!

Preparation Time : 10 minutes

Cooking time : 30 -45 minutes

Servings : 4

Cuisine: Indian ,Maharashtra

Course: Desserts

Level Of Cooking: Easy

Ingredients:

  • 500 gms Lauki/Bottle gourd/Ghiya
  • 1/2 litres Milk
  • 1 cup Fresh cream
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 6 Green cardamoms, powdered
  • 9-10 Cashew nuts for garnishing
  • 1 tbsp Poppy seeds/ Khuskhus

Method:

Step 1.

Wash and peel the Lauki/Bottle gourd/Ghiya and grate it in a mixing bowl. Keep aside.

Step 2.

Heat milk in a wok/Kadahi/non-stick pan and bring it to boil. Add the grated Lauki and cook till it gets cooked and the mixture starts thickening.

Step 3.

When 80% of the milk evaporates, add sugar and poppy seeds and cook on low flame while stirring continuously, till the sugar dissolves.

Step 4.

Add cream and green cardamom powder to the cooked Lauki and mix it well.

Step 5.

Cook on low flame for another ten minutes or till very well blended. Switch off the stove.

Step 6.

Remove it in a dessert serving bowl and serve hot, warm or cold, garnished with slightly fried or roasted cashew nuts.

Health benefits of Lauki/ Bottle gourd/Ghiya :

What’s making this veggie popular these days is its enormous impact on the treatment of high blood pressure and heart disease. The myriad of health benefits of bottle gourd is least known to many.Bottle gourd is believed to help the liver function in a balanced fashion.

The juice from the leaves help cure jaundice and the juice from the gourd helps reduce graying of hair.

The gourd juice, helps treat burning sensation in the urinary passage if consumed with lime juice.

It reduces fatigue and keeps you fresh, especially during summer.

It helps fight constipation, as it is fiber rich. Because of its fiber and low fat content, Ayurveda highly recommends this food for diabetic patients and young children.

Ayurveda also recommends the juice of this gourd in the treatment of acidity, indigestion and ulcers as it serves as an alkaline mixture.

Indian traditional medicine claims that bottle gourd acts as a nerve tonic and can help improve obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). This claim has been confirmed by a study published in the journal Pharmacognosy Research where the investigators found that the plant possesses anti-compulsive (anti-OCD) activity although they are not certain about the mechanism of action of this plant.

Bottle gourd is also considered one of the best weight loss foods since it is 96 percent water and provides just 12 calories per 100g of serving.

It is rich in, thiamin, vitamin C, zinc, iron and magnesium thus helping in improving overall health.

The juice from bottle gourd leaf helps in curing baldness and aids in preventing tooth decay.

So the good old “lauki”, though neglected the most, has both healing and cosmetic benefits that many people are unaware of. These easy growing climbers have made a great impact on the domestic gardening segment as well, due to its enormous health benefits.

Ref.http://www.medindia.net/patients/lifestyleandwellness/nutritional-guard-bottle-gourd.htm#

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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Semolina Crackers

Semolina Crackers

Hi friends! Salted crackers are a very crisp and delicious tea time snack.

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cuisine: North Indian

Course: Snack

Makes: 24 discs

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Semolina/Sooji flour
  • 1/4 cup Olive oil
  • 2/3 tsp Salt or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp Black pepper, freshly ground
  • 1/4 cup Water (use as required)
  • Oil to deep fry

Method:

Step 1.

Mix Semolina/Sooji flour, salt, pepper, oil and rub it well with your finger tips.

Step.2

Add water little at a time, kneading the mix well with your palm into a soft firm dough. Cover and set aside for 15 minutes.

Step 3.

Divide the dough into about four equal portions. Take each portion of the dough and roll it into 4″ circles. With a cookie cutter cut 4-6 crackers/discs from each rolled out circle.

Step 4.

Prick each cracker/disc with a fork. Heat the oil for deep frying on medium heat. To check if the oil is ready (hot enough for frying), put a tiny piece of dough in the oil to see if it comes up slowly.

Step 5.

On low flame, fry the crackers/discs in batches, until both sides are light golden in colour.

Step 6.

Drain the fried crackers on a paper kitchen towel lined dish to drain out the excessive oil, if any.

Note:

  1. Cool and store in air tight containers.
  2. When you add the water little at a time the Semolina/Sooji flour will look scattered but slowly it will form a dough.

Health benefits of Semolina /Sooji:

  • Semolina is made from durum wheat, so it is digested slowly. This helps you feel full longer and prevents you from overeating.
  • Semolina improves kidney function, thanks to its potassium content.
  • Add some chopped nuts and raisins to your semolina porridge, and you increase its nutritional content as well as taste.
  • Add some chopped vegetables to savory semolina upma, and you have a power-packed, as well as delicious, meal in a bowl.
  • Semolina is a good source of two vital vitamins: E and the B group. Both, as we know, are essential for good immunity from disease.
  • For those who lead an active lifestyle, semolina is a quick and nourishing source of energy.
  • The trace minerals in semolina, such as phosphorus, zinc and magnesium, are beneficial for the health of your bones and nervous system.

Of course those with gluten intolerance would need to avoid eating semolina.

Ref.http://www.healthbeautyblogs.com/articles-flours-benefits/assorted-benefits-of-sooji-for-health-and-diet

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.

 

Aloo Matar Rasedar

Aloo mutterPotato peas curry

Sweet, delicious green peas or garden peas are one of the ancient cultivated vegetables grown for their succulent nutritious green seeds. Peas are probably originated in the sub-Himalayan plains of north-west India. Now, this versatile legume is one of the major commercial crops grown all over the temperate, and semi-tropical regions.

Botanically, pea plant is an herbaceous vine. It belongs to the family of Fabaceae, in the genus: Pisum. Scientific name: Pisum sativum. Some of the common names include english peas, sweet peas, garden peas, pease,…etc.

Preparation Time : 15 minutes

Cooking time : 25 minutes

Servings : 6

Cuisine: North Indian

Course: Main Course

Level Of Cooking: Easy

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup green peas, shelled
  • 2 medium size potatoes, cut in to small cubes
  • 3 medium size onions, finely chopped
  • 4  medium size tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp  turmeric powder
  • 2 tbsp of coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp  red chili powder /or as per taste
  • 2/3 tsp Salt / or salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup plain curd/yogurt
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil

Method :

Step 1.

Heat oil in a pan add add the chopped onions, when they soften and start to turn golden brown, add the turmeric powder, coriander, chili powder and salt. Fry on low flame till the masala smells nice and is blended well with the onions (about 1-2 minutes).

Step2.
Add the tomatoes and about half cup of water. When starts to boil simmer until the tomatoes are soft (about 3-5 minutes). Cool it to room temperature and puree this mixture in a blender .
Step 3.

Take the blended mixture in a pressure cooker, add cubed potatoes and shelled peas. Close the lid and cook on high flame.  The moment full pressure is formed, switch off the stove. When the  pressure cooker cools to room temperature open the lid.

Step 4.

Add the whisked yogurt and chopped coriander leaves. Mix well, the moment it starts boiling switch off the stove.

Step 5.

Garnish the curry with finely chopped coriander leaves. Serve hot with any Indian bread of your choice and Raita.

 Health Benefits of Green Peas:

Green peas are one of the most nutritious leguminous vegetables rich in health benefiting phyto-nutrients, minerals, vitamins and anti-oxidants.

Fresh, tender peas are relatively low in calories on comparison to beans, and cowpeas. 100 g of green peas carry just 81 calories, and no cholesterol. Nonetheless, they are a good source of protein, and soluble as well as insoluble fiber.

Fresh pea pods are an excellent source of folic acid. 100 g provides 65 µg or 16% of recommended daily levels of folates. Folates are one of the B-complex vitamins required for DNA synthesis inside the cell. Studies suggest that adequate folate rich foods when given in expectant mothers would help prevent neural tube defects in the newborn babies.

Fresh green peas are very good in ascorbic acid (vitamin C). 100 g of fresh pods carry 40 mg or 67% of daily requirement of vitamin C. Vitamin C is a powerful natural water-soluble anti-oxidant. Vegetables rich in this vitamin help human body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful, pro-inflammatory free radicals from the body.

Peas contain phytosterols, especially ß-sitosterol. Studies suggest that vegetables like legumes, fruits and cereals rich in plant sterols help lower cholesterol levels inside the human body.

Garden peas are also good in vitamin K. 100 g of fresh seeds contain about 24.8 µg or about 21% of daily requirement of vitamin K-1 (phylloquinone). Vitamin K has been found to have a potential role in bone mass building function (mineralization) through promotion of osteotrophic activity inside the bone cells. It also has established role in Alzheimer’s disease patients by limiting neuronal damage inside the brain.

Fresh green peas also carry adequate amounts of anti-oxidants flavonoids such as carotenes, lutein and zea-xanthin as well as vitamin-A (provide 765 IU or 25.5% of RDA per 100 g). Vitamin A is an essential nutrient required for maintaining healthy membranes, skin and eye-sight. Additionally, consumption of natural fruits/vegetables rich in flavonoids helps to protect from lung and oral cavity cancers.

In addition to folates, peas are also good in many other essential B-complex vitamins such as pantothenic acid, niacin, thiamin, and pyridoxine. Furthermore, they are rich source of many minerals such as calcium, iron, copper, zinc, and manganese.

Ref.http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/green-peas.html

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.

 

Chana dal Dosa / Bengal gram dal dosa

Chana dal dosa 1

Chana dal Dosa / Bengal gram dal dosa

Chana Dal: A Nutritious Boost for Your Weight Loss Diet

Different legumes and pulses benefit any diet because they are high in protein and other nutrients that contribute to proper nutrition. When you are on a weight loss program, eating balanced meals is essential to achieve your goals. In Eastern cuisine, chickpeas and its varieties are widely in use and they are often included in several curry dishes. Chana dal is one of such varieties that provides good nutrition .

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Chana dal /Bengal gram dal
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 2 Green Chilies
  • 1 Onion , finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp Coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • 2/3 level tsp Salt or / salt as required
  • 1/4 tsp Hing / Asafetida
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • Olive Oil for fryingMethod:

Step 1.

Wash well and soak the Chana dal /Bengal gram dal in water overnight.

Step 2.

With little water from the soaked dal grind the dal with green chilies, chopped onions , Hing / Asafetida

and salt into a batter. Take out the batter in a mixing bowl, keep aside.

Step 3.

Chop the coriander leaves into small pieces and add to the batter.

Step 4.

Heat a nonstick pan/ griddle / tawa and grease it with little oil.

Step 5.

On medium flame pour a ladle full of batter and spread it on the greased nonstick pan/ griddle / tawa

and pour oil around it.

Step 6.

After the dosa is cooked on one side, flip it on the other side and cook on low medium flame. Cook on both the sides, using a little oil, till they turn golden brown in colour. Now remove the Chana dal dosa on a plate. Serve hot with coriander or mint chutney.

Health benefits of chana dal:

This pulse is high in protein as well as dietary fiber that aids digestion and keeps you full for longer. Chana dal is high in fiber and help to lower cholesterol. Apart from having a great taste, it also has a very low glycemic index, which is important for those with diabetes. Chana dal can be a good food for people with diabetes because it has a low glycemic index. Chickpeas are a helpful source of zinc, folate, calcium and protein Chickpeas are low in fat and most of it is polyunsaturated.

Ref. http://www.mywellnessmart.com/products/121

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.

Halwa Bemisal

Millet Halwa VG

Millet Flour Halwa – In Hindi Bajre ka halwa -In Telgu- జొన్నలు

English Name-Pearl Millet ,Hindi Name: Bajra

A cereal, used a lot in rural India, it has a high fiber content. The most common millet is pearl millet i.e bajra, which is an important crop in India. India is the largest producer of pearl millet. Very famous in Rajasthan, it is the most famous type of millet. Bajre ki roti with sarsoon da saag is one of India’s signature dishes from the farms. These brown grains incorporate a nutty and bittersweet after taste. It is commonly prepared as a bread and stuffed parathas whereas the flour can be used to make dokhlas, Munn and chaklis. Bajra should always be consumed fresh therefore it is best to purchase it in small quantities.

Did you know?

Bajra is called babala and lebelebele in Africa and milheto in Brazil. One cup of dry pearl millet expands to three cups of cooked millet.
Usage :

Over 90 percent of pearl millet cultivated is consumed as food by humans. Having its texture similar to brown rice, it can be cooked like rice. It is also used in the preparation of flat breads.
Pearl millet is grounded to flour and is used in making various baking products like breads, cookies, muffins, chapatis/ flat bread and biscuits. It lasts for not more than 15 days. The dried bajra grains are ground to flour which is light brown to greyish in color with a nutty taste. Bajra flour is usually used in winters as it is known to warm the body.

Hi friends! A new recipe for the winter. Once you make this yummy halwa in winter, it will remain on your dessert’s menu  for every winter!!!

Cuisine: North Indian

Course: Indian desserts

Time : 20 minutes

Serves: 4

Ingredients :

  • 1 cup Millet flour , 120 gms
  • 120 gms Jaggery
  • 1/2 cup Ghee
  • 6 Cashews
  • 15 pistachios
  • 15 Almonds
  • 6 Green cardamoms,

Method:

Step 1.

In a pan take 2 cups of water add Jaggery to it. On a high flame bring it to boil, reduce to low flame till jaggery has melted in water completely.

Step 2.

Dry roast lightly the nuts in a non stick heavy bottom pan, keep aside to cool. When cooled coarsely grind cashew nuts, almonds and pistachios. Keep aside.

Step 3.

Heat ghee in a wok/kadahi add millet flour to it. Stir frying cook on low-medium flame until it changes colour and slightly golden brown in color.

Step 4.

Add the hot jaggery syrup. Mix well and cook on medium flame stirring continuously until it gets thick in consistency.

Step 5.

When halwa gets thick add ground nuts and cardamom powder. Mix all ingredients really well and cook for one more minute. Millet flour halwa is ready.

Step 6.

Garnish the halwa with a tabsp of ground nuts and serve hot.

Note:

You can increase or decrease the quantity of sweetness in halwa as per your choice.

Top of Form

Nutritional Value :

Bajra is high in proteins, iron, calcium, folic acid and prevents anemia. It is higher in calorie count than wheat. It also promotes a healthy nervous system. Many claim bajra is the key to a slim waist since it aids in burning fat. It helps to overcome acidity due to its alkaline nature.
Ref. http://food.ndtv.com/ingredient/pearl-millet-700926

Health Benefits of Millet:

  1. Millet is alkaline and it digests easily.
  2. The Hunzas – who live in a remote area of the Himalayan foothills and are known for their excellent health and longevity – enjoy millet as a staple in their diet.
  3. Millet will hydrate your colon to keep you from being constipated.
  4. Millet acts as a prebiotic feeding microflora in your inner ecosystem.
  5. The serotonin in millet is calming to your moods.
  6. Millet is asmart carbwith lots of fiber and low simple sugars. Because of this it has a relatively low glycemic index and has been shown to produce lower blood sugar levels than wheat or rice.
  7. Magnesium in millet can help reduce the effects of migraines and heart attacks.
  8. Niacin (vitamin B3) in millet can help lower cholesterol.
  9. Millet consumption decreases triglycerides and C-reactive protein.
  10. All millet varieties show high antioxidant activity.
  11. Millet is gluten-free and non-allergenic. A great grain for sensitive individuals.
  12. Millet’s high protein content (15 percent) makes is a substantial addition to a vegetariandiet.

Ref. http://www.care2.com/greenliving/12-health-benefits-of-millet.html

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.

 

Bajra / Millet Roti

Bajra Roti

Bajra / Millet roti or bajra bhakri

Bajra / Millet roti or bajra bhakri is gluten free flat Indian bread made from millet / bajra flour.

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 3 minutes

Cuisine: Indian

Course: Bread

Serves: 6 small flat rotes / breads

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups bajra /millet flour
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 level tsp salt or / as per taste
  • 1 tsp cumin seed, roasted and powdered
  • 2 tbsp coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 onion, medium size, finely chopped
  • 1 cup hot water
  • some bajra / millet flour for dusting
  • Olive oil / pure ghee for frying rotes

Method:

Step 1.

In a pan heat the water and keep aside.

Step 2.

In a mixing bowl, take the bajra / millet flour add salt, red chili powder, cumin seed powder, onions and coriander leaves. With the hot water knead the mixture into a smooth ,soft dough.

Step 3.

Divide the dough into six equal portions. Dust with flour the rolling board and roll each portion into 3″ disc/ roti/ flat bread.

Step 4.

Heat a griddle / tava on a medium flame, carefully transfer each rolled disc/ roti/ flat bread disc on to the hot tava / griddle.

Step 5.

Cook one side of the roti, flip and cook the other side. Put some ghee on the disc/ roti/ flat bread and fry slowly then flip a couple of times and cook till golden brown spots appear on both sides of the disc/ roti/ flat bread and it is well cooked. (fry the bajra rotis like parathas)

Step 6.

Fry all the disc/ roti/ flat bread one by one and stack all the rotis in a small bread basket or a casserole. Serve bajra roti / disc/ flat bread hot with a stuffed brinjals/ egg plants/ aubergines as side dish and dhaba dal (Sabut urad/ black gram whole with Bengal gram dal/ chana dal).

Health Benefits of Millet:

Millet is more than just an interesting alternative to the more common grains. Our food ranking system qualified it as a good source of some very important nutrients, including copper, manganese, phosphorus, and magnesium.

Heart-Protective Properties

Although oats have been widely publicized for their heart-protective properties, millet is a grain that should also be included on your list of heart-healthy choices because of its status as a good source of magnesium. Magnesium has been shown in studies to reduce the severity of asthma and to reduce the frequency of migraine attacks. Magnesium has also been shown to lower high blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart attack, especially in people with atherosclerosis or diabetic heart disease.

Development and Repair of Body Tissue

The phosphorus provided by millet plays a role in the structure of every cell in the body. In addition to its role in forming the mineral matrix of bone, phosphorus is an essential component of numerous other life-critical compounds including adenosine triphosphate or ATP, the molecule that is the energy currency of the body. Phosphorus is an important component of nucleic acids, the building blocks of the genetic code. In addition, the metabolism of lipids (fats) relies on phosphorus, and phosphorus is an essential component of lipid-containing structures such as cell membranes and nervous system structures.

Millet and Other Whole Grains Substantially Lower Type 2 Diabetes Risk

Millet and other whole grains are a rich source of magnesium, a mineral that acts as a co-factor for more than 300 enzymes, including enzymes involved in the body’s use of glucose and insulin secretion.

The FDA permits foods that contain at least 51% whole grains by weight (and are also low in fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol) to display a health claim stating consumption is linked to lower risk of heart disease and certain cancers. Now, research suggests regular consumption of whole grains also reduces risk of type 2 diabetes. (van Dam RM, Hu FB, Diabetes Care).

In this 8-year trial, involving 41,186 particpants of the Black Women’s Health Study, research data confirmed inverse associations between magnesium, calcium and major food sources in relation to type 2 diabetes that had already been reported in predominantly white populations.

Risk of type 2 diabetes was 31% lower in black women who frequently ate whole grains compared to those eating the least of these magnesium-rich foods. When the women’s dietary intake of magnesium intake was considered by itself, a beneficial, but lesser—19%—reduction in risk of type 2 diabetes was found, indicating that whole grains offer special benefits in promoting healthy blood sugar control. Daily consumption of low-fat dairy foods was also helpful, lowering risk of type 2 diabetes by 13%. Enjoy a hearty breakfast and get the benefits of both millet and dairy by serving a hot bowl of millet topped with low-fat milk and your favorite dried fruit, nuts or seeds.

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Helps Prevent Gallstones

Eating foods high in insoluble fiber, such as millet, can help women avoid gallstones, shows a study published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

Studying the overall fiber intake and types of fiber consumed over a 16 year period by over 69,000 women in the Nurses Health Study, researchers found that those consuming the most fiber overall (both soluble and insoluble) had a 13% lower risk of developing gallstones compared to women consuming the fewest fiber-rich foods.

Those eating the most foods rich in insoluble fiber gained even more protection against gallstones: a 17% lower risk compared to women eating the least. And the protection was dose-related; a 5-gram increase in insoluble fiber intake dropped risk dropped 10%.

How do foods rich in insoluble fiber help prevent gallstones? Researchers think insoluble fiber not only speeds intestinal transit time (how quickly food moves through the intestines), but reduces the secretion of bile acids (excessive amounts contribute to gallstone formation), increases insulin sensitivity and lowers triglycerides (blood fats). Abundant in all whole grains, insoluble fiber is also found in nuts and the edible skin of fruits and vegetables including tomatoes, cucumbers, many squash, apples, berries, and pears. In addition, beans provide insoluble as well as soluble fiber.

Fiber from Whole Grains and Fruit Protective against Breast Cancer

When researchers looked at how much fiber 35,972 participants in the UK Women’s Cohort Study ate, they found a diet rich in fiber from whole grains, such as millet, and fruit offered significant protection against breast cancer for pre-menopausal women. (Cade JE, Burley VJ, et al., International Journal of Epidemiology).

Ref.http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=53#healthbenefits

 

Cauliflower, Peas and Potato Stew

Cauliflower stew

Cauliflower, peas, potato Stew

 Vegetables usually show health benefits in long run by improving your overall health and keeping the internal systems in perfect condition. The consumption of vegetables takes care of your digestive, excretory, and skeletal system, as well as blood pressure levels. With a diet rich in vegetables, you are being benefited with abundant antioxidants that keep away diseases like cancer, cardiovascular problems and strokes. Moreover, vegetables deliver ample amounts of vitamins, including folate, vitamin A, vitamin K and vitamin B6, as well as carotenoids like beta carotene from carrots, lycopene from tomatoes, zeaxanthin from greens, and lutein from spinach and collard greens. Vegetables also help in keeping your weight under control and promoting healthy skin and hair. There have been innumerable research studies done all over the world that strongly suggest having fresh, green vegetables on a regular basis is far better than going for supplementary tablets to get the wholesome nutrition that you need.

Time: 20 minutes

Course: Main

Cuisine: India, Utter Pradesh

Level: Easy

Serves: 4
Ingredients:

1 medium size potato, boiled, peeled and cubed potatoes

1 cup cauliflower florets, washed

1/2 cup peas

1 medium size onion, finely chopped

1-2 green chillies

6 pods garlic, crushed

1 tsp ginger, finely grated

1 tsp dhania powder,

1/4 tsp black pepper powder

3 cloves, powdered

1″ Cinnamon stick

1/2 tsp jeera powder, jeera roasted and powdered

1 tbsp oil,

2/3 tsp salt or / salt to taste.

Method :

Step 1.

Wash, peel and cube potato. Cook the potato cubes and peas in a pressure cooker with one cup of water. The moment pressure is formed, switch off the stove. Cool the cooker to room temperature, open the lid take out the potato cubes and peas, keep aside.

Step 2.

Mash some green peas and potatoes coarsely. Keep aside.

Step 3.

Heat oil in a wok / kadahi/ sauce pan and add the cumin seeds. When cumin starts crackling, add the finely chopped onions. When onions become translucent add small florets of cauliflowers and potato cubes and peas mix. Stir fry the vegetables on medium flame till the gets pinkish brown in 3-4 minutes add salt.

Step 4.
Add cloves, cinnamon, dhaniya powder, pepper powder, jeera powder and the ginger-garlic-green chili paste to the above mixture. Mix well and fry the mixture on medium flame for few minutes.

Step 5.

Add water to the masala and vegetables. Add 1 1/2 cups of water. Cover and cook on low flame for about 6-8 minutes. The cauliflower florets should be soft but retain their shape .
Step 6.
Serve the stew hot garnished with finely chopped coriander leaves with any Indian bread of your choice and raita.

 

Nutritional Value of Vegetables:

Antioxidants: Did you know that including vegetables in your diet is probably the easiest way to stay healthy, trim and nourished? Since vegetables are low-calorie, nutrient-rich foods, they help you to stay in optimum health over the long term by keeping your weight in check. According to a recent study, plant-based foods contain antioxidants(polyphenols) that may improve blood sugar in people at risk for diabetes and heart disease.

As mentioned earlier, vegetables have abundant levels of antioxidants that prevent the growth of cancerous cells. Dark green vegetables have lots of phenolic flavonoid antioxidants and minerals. These vitamins and minerals are essential for the proper functioning of your body. Deficiencies of these vitamins and minerals can lead to serious deficiencies of your bones, teeth and vital organs. Moreover, antioxidants boost the body’s immunity and keeps from developing infections and diseases. Leafy green vegetables have a bioflavonoid known as ‘Quercetin’. This is responsible for the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities of vegetables along with its unique, anticancer properties. Quercetin also effectively cuts down the flow of substances that lead to allergies. This compound plays the role of an inhibitor of mass cell secretion, thereby decreasing the release of interleukin-6. Most of the green, yellow and orange vegetables also have high percentage of calcium, potassium, iron, magnesium, vitamin B-complex, vitamin A, vitamin-C, vitamin K, zea-xanthins, α and β carotenes and crypto-xanthins.

Dietary Fiber: Vegetables are great options for consuming dietary fiber. Owing to the high percentage of fiber level in vegetables, your digestive track stays well toned. Vegetables are abundant in soluble as well as insoluble dietary fiber, known as non-starch polysaccharides (NSP). This dietary fiber absorbs the extra water in your colon and thereby retains the moisture content in the fecal matter. This aids in digestion, preventing chronic constipation, hemorrhoids, rectal fissures, and diarrhea. Your digestive system becomes sleeker and its ability to process foods becomes smoother, keeping many ailments away.  Eating more fiber-rich foods keep your digestive system clear and healthy, helping you to avoid problems like constipation, bowel irregularity, colon cancer and even polyps. Since they have high fiber, vegetables also tend to make you feel full for longer, and stops unnecessary snacking, so they can help reduce your weight.

Cancer Prevention: Cabbage, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and broccoli have a high content of indoles and isothiocyanates. These components have protective properties against colon cancer, breast cancer, skin cancer and other types of cancers. Broccoli sprouts have immensely higher sulforaphane than the matured broccolis, which is a cancer-protective substance. Furthermore, as said before, since vegetables are great antioxidants, they also alleviate the chances of fatal diseases like cancer.

Proteins and Amino Acids: If you eat less animal products in your diet, you must ensure that your diet is high in protein-rich vegetables to compensate for the proteins that you are missing. Once you have the correct combination of vegetables in your meals, you will gain ample amount of amino acids that are required to live healthy. Eat plenty of beans and spinach, along with whole grain rice for a balanced meal.

Water Content: Vegetables naturally have high levels of water; this is the reason why they are generally fat free and low in calories. You can rest assured of both your weight and health once you start on a vegetable-rich diet. The more you consume vegetables, the more the water intake that flushes out waste products and toxins from your body.

Minerals: Green leafy vegetables are high in magnesium and a have low glycemic index, thus proving to be helpful for patients with type 2 diabetes. If you eat at least 1 serving of green leafy vegetables each day, it will considerably lower the risks of diabetes. Green vegetables are also rich in iron and calcium, except for Swiss chard and spinach, since they are high in oxalic acid.

Vitamins: In general, vegetables have a high vitamin content. However, vitamin K is usually prevalent in almost all vegetables. The high level of vitamin K in green vegetables makes them an ideal and natural way to prevent bone problems. Vitamin K is necessary for the production of osteocalcin, a protein mandatory for proper bone health. In a survey, the addition of green, leafy vegetables considerably decreased the chances of hip fractures in middle-aged women.

Prevention of Hypetension: Recent research study suggests that Mediterranean diet comprising of food rich in unsaturated fats (found in olive oil and nuts) and nitrite and nitrate (found in leafy green vegetables) may help protect you from hypertension.

Lycopene and Beta Carotene: Green vegetables have high levels of beta-carotene, which improve immune function considerably once it is converted into vitamin A. Tomatoes contain lycopene, which protects your eyes from vision problems. A diet deficient in green vegetables often leads to the possibilities of blindness, and other illnesses in children and adults.

Allyl sulfides: Garlic, onions, chives, leeks and scallions are rich in allyl sulfides that help in lowering high blood pressure and protecting the stomach and digestive tract from fatal diseases like cancer.

Multimorbidity: Recent research suggests that greater consumption of vegetable, whole grain products and fruits may lower the risk of multimorbidity.

Good HealthEating fruit and vegetables may promote emotional well-being among healthy young adults.  Research suggests that good mood may lead to greater preference for healthy foods over indulgent foods.

Ref. https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/vegetable/vegetables.html

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.

 

Stuffed Brinjals/Aubergines

Brinjals stuffed NG

Stuffed brinjals /aubergines /egg plants

In this recipe ground nuts and sesame seeds and coconut gratings are used for making stuffed baby brinjals /aubergines /egg plants.

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 35 minutes

 Course: main

Cuisine: Maharashtra

Serves: 4

Ingredients :

  • 200 gms brinjals /aubergines /egg plants
  • 1 medium size onions, finely chopped
  • 1 tomato medium size, finely chopped
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp salt or / salt to taste
  • 1/4 tsp asafoetida/hing
  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 2 tbsps Coriander leaves, finely chopped

For the filling

  • 1/4 cup peanuts, roasted
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 3 tbsp fresh coconut, finely desiccated
  • 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped or crushed well
  • 1 tsp ginger, finely grated
  • 1/4 tsp haldi/ turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp Fenugreek /methi powder
  • 2/3 tsp red chili powder
  • 1tsp coriander powder/dhania powder
  • 1 medium size onions, finely chopped
  • 1tsp aamchoor / dry mango powder
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds, roasted and powdered

Method:

Step 1.

Wash the brinjals /aubergines /egg plants well, Slit the brinjals /aubergines /egg plants, lengthwise, into four, but leave the stems on, so the brinjals /aubergines /egg plants remain joined at the stem and soak in salted water for 20 minutes.

Step 2.

Dry roast the peanuts first, when they start to become light brown, add the sesame seeds followed by desiccated fresh coconut. Roast these ingredients till all of them are light brown. Switch off the stove.

Step 3.

When the coconut, peanuts and sesame seeds cool down, put in a grinder, add one finely chopped onion , ginger, garlic, grind to a smooth paste with little water. Take it out in a mixing bowl.

Step 4.

Add salt , jeera powder, dhania powder, garam masala powder, red chili powder , fenugreek /methi powder and turmeric powder to the ground masala paste and mix well.

Step 5.

Stuff each brinjal/aubergine /egg plant with this ground masala. Keep aside.

Step 6.

In a skillet /pan heat oil, add one finely chopped onion and fry them till they turn transparent.

Step 7.

Add the pureed tomato to the lightly fried onions and fry for 2-3 minutes. keep on stirring continuously Add the stuffed brinjals to the skillet / pan fry for few minutes. Add water, and cover and cook for 20-25 minutes.

Step 8.

Switch off the stove. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with bajra / Millet flour rotis, rice or puris.

Possible health benefits of consuming eggplant:

Consuming fruits and vegetables of all kinds has long been associated with a reduced risk of many lifestyle-related health conditions. Many studies have suggested that increasing consumption of plant foods like the eggplant decreases the risk of obesity and overall mortality, diabetes, heart disease and promotes a healthy complexion and hair, increased energy and overall lower weight.

Heart health

The fiber, potassium, vitamin C, vitamin B-6, and phytonutrient content in eggplants all support heart health. According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, eating foods containing flavonoids is affiliated with a lower risk of mortality from heart disease. Consuming even small quantities of flavonoid-rich foods may benefit human health.2

Several studies show that consumption of the flavonoids known as anthocyanins has played a major role in lowering risk of cardiovascular disease. One particular study revealed that those who consumed more than three servings of fruits and vegetables per week containing anthocyanins had 34% less risk of heart disease than those who consumed less. In another clinical study, researchers found that increased intake of anthocyanins was associated with significantly lower blood pressure.3

Blood cholesterol

Research on the effects of eggplant consumption in animal studies has shown that rabbits with high cholesterol that consumed eggplant juice displayed a significant decrease in weight and blood cholesterol levels.5

Laboratory analyses of the phenolic compounds in eggplant reveal that the vegetable contains significant amounts of chlorogenic acid, which is one of the most powerful free radical scavengers found in plants. Chlorogenic acid has been shown to decrease LDL levels, and also serves as an antimicrobial, antiviral, and anticarcinogenic agent.4

Cancer

Polyphenols in eggplant have been found to exhibit anti-cancer effects. Anthocyanins and chlorogenic acid function as antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds. They protect body cells from damage caused by free radicals and in turn prevent tumor growth and invasion and spread of cancer cells. They also stimulate detoxifying enzymes within cells and promote cancer cell death.3

Cognitive function

Findings from animal studies suggest that nasunin, an anthocyanin within eggplant skin, is a powerful antioxidant that protects the lipids comprising cell membranes in brain cells from free radical damage. It has also been proven to help facilitate the transport of nutrients into the cell and wastes out.6

Research has also shown that anthocyanins inhibit neuroinflammation and facilitate blood flow to the brain. This helps prevent age-related mental disorders and also improves memory.3

Weight management and satiety

Dietary fibers are commonly recognized as important factors in weight management and loss by functioning as “bulking agents” in the digestive system. These compounds increase satiety and reduce appetite, making you feel fuller for longer and thereby lowering your overall calorie intake. Since eggplant is already low in calories, it makes a great part of a healthy, low-calorie diet.

Ref. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/279359.php

Yam/Jimikand Kebabs

Yam Kebabs NG 1

What is Yam / elephant yam?

The elephant yam can be described as an edible tuber, which is one of the most widely consumed food crops, mainly in the tropical regions. This tuber is called elephant yam because the plant that it is derived from is quite huge and resembles the foot of an elephant to a great extent. Therefore, some of the other synonyms for the elephant yam are elephant foot yam, sweet yam and elephant bread. The highest consumption of the elephant yam is in Africa, followed by some Asian countries such as India. Although in the United States sweet potatoes are often mistaken for the elephant yam, the two are actually quite different, since they belong to two completely different plant families.

Hi friends!On the health and nutrition front, elephant yams are very high in carbs and are also good sources of proteins and certain vitamins. Elephant yam antioxidants make it a nutritious food to eat. Here is recipe for Yam/Jimikand Kebabs.

Difficulty level : Medium

Cuisine : North Indian

Course: Appetizers / snack

Prep Time : 25 minutes

Cook Time : 15 minutes

Ingredients :

  • 250 gm Yam, cut into tiny cubes
  • 1 cup Bengal gram split and skinned / Chana Dal
  • 2 small size Onions, finely Chopped Onions
  • 3 tbs Corn flour
  • 1/2 tsp Red Chilli Powder
  • 1 tbsp White Vinegar
  • 2 tbsp Cilantro/Coriander , finely chopped
  • 1 tsp Ginger , finely grated
  • 1 tsp Garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 tsp Garam masala
  • ½ tsp Aamchur/Dry Mango Powder
  • ½ tsp Jeera/Cumin Powder
  • 4 tbsp Olive oil
  • 2/3 tsp Salt or / salt to taste

For filling:

  • 100 gms cottage cheese
  • 2 tsp Melon Seeds
  • 4 tbsp pista, coarsely ground
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Method:

Step 1.

Peel and clean Yam / Jimikand, cut into small cubes wash it well.

Step 2.

On a high flame in a pressure cooker put yam with white vinegar and 1 cup of water . Close the lid, when full pressure is formed reduce the heat to low flame and cook for 5 minutes. Switch off the stove and let the pressure cooker cool to room temperature.

Step 3.

Open the lid drain yam and using a colander drain the water and wash the cubes under running water to remove some starch. place it in the food processor and grind into a fine paste. Lightly fry the ground yam in oil for 10 minutes. Switch off the stove and let cool it to room temperature.

Step 4.

On a high flame in a pressure cooker put washed chana dal with 3cups of water . Close the lid, when full pressure is formed reduce the heat to low flame and cook for1 5 minutes. Switch off the stove and let the pressure cooker cool to room temperature.

Step 5.

Open the lid strain chana dal using a colander, drain the water and mash the cooked dal into a coarse paste.

Step 6.

Add boiled and mashed chana dal, coriander, finely chopped onion, crushed garlic, gram masala, amchoor/ mango powder, salt, red chili powder to the yam and mix well.

Step 7.

Divide into 12 equal portions. and keep aside.

Step 8.

For the filling, mix 1/2 tsp salt to grated cottage cheese, green chilies, melon seeds and pista. Make roundels with it, cover each roundel with yam mix.

Step 9.

Press each kebab and make it flat. Coat each kebab lightly in corn flour and set aside.

Step 10.

Heat about 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Fry Yam kebabs in batches until golden brown on both sides. Between batches, add oil as needed.and shallow fry in oil. Serve with green chutney.

Elephant yam health benefits:

There are several elephant yam health benefits that are quite well known.

Given below are some of the most common elephant yam health benefits:

  • The trace minerals and key minerals present in elephant yam include copper, zinc, selenium, phosphorus, magnesium and potassium.
    • The fiber content in elephant yam is naturally high and therefore, it is usually considered a slimming food, as it promotes weight loss and reduces the levels of cholesterol in the body. If elephant yam is cooked in the right way, it can be eaten without any fear of weight gain.Several low fat elephant yam recipes are easily available through online resources as well as recipe books.
    • It has a cooling effect on the body, which is why it is good for people who suffer from hypertension.
    • Elephant yams are very high in omega 3 fatty acids; they help reduce the bad cholesterol in the body and increase the good cholesterol instead.
    • People who are undergoing treatment for piles are usually advised to eat high amounts of elephant yam.
    • The anti-coagulating properties present in yam can prevent the blood from clotting.

Ref. http://www.diethealthclub.com/articles/360/diet-and-wellness/elephant-yam-and-health-benefits.html

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.