YOGURT DILL DIP-दही की चक्का सोई चटनी

Gluten Free, quick and nutritious
Ingredients:
750 grams yogurt
1 teaspoon salt
2 inch frozen crushed green chilli
2 teaspoon dill weed or fresh dill
Preparation:
Put yogurt in the muslin cloth and hang it for 1-2 hours for the water to drain out.
STEPS:
Step 1. Remove yogurt block from the muslin cloth and put it in a container.
Step 2. Add salt, frozen garlic, frozen crushed green chilli and dill weed.
Step 3. Mix everything thoroughly and store in refrigerator.
Handy Tips:IMG_0450
1. You can be as creative as you want to be , replace Dill weed with other herbs like chives, rosemary, basil, mint, coriander or spices like red chilli pepper, black pepper.
2. You can also add finely chopped bell peppers, mushrooms or cucumber.
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Roast Eggplant Mash (Baingun Bharta)-गुणों वाला बैगुन भर्था

Why this recipe? How is it green? Am I saving some time by following four steps or less recipes?

GLUTEN FREE, Source of  dietary fibre, vitamins and rich in antioxidants compounds

Using Pre sautéed onions and pre roasted eggplant/Aubergine is saving 15-25 minutes of your time.

You save: 40% of fuel energy and 15-25 minutes of your precious time that is about 8 to 10% of the total time you spend in kitchen on an average(assuming you spend a total of 2-3 hours in a day in the kitchen).

COOKING TIME: 10-15 Minutes with preparation following time saving tips 

INGREDIENTS:
1 teaspoon oil
1 large roasted egg plant, peeled and cut into small pieces
1 big tomato chopped
2 big onions chopped small (and sautéed, if you followed save time for next time tip)
2 inch frozen ginger
1 inch frozen chopped green chilli
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon red chilli powder
1 ½ teaspoon coriander powder
½ teaspoon of mango powder or pomegranate powder
Coriander leaves or spring onion for garnish

STEP 1. Put bay leaf and cinnamon into heated oil, let them get brown and add sautéed onion (If using fresh cut onion , sauté until they are translucent)
STEP 2. Add chopped roasted aubergine, salt, chilli powder and coriander powder
STEP 3. Add chopped tomatoes and sauté until all water from tomatoes dries out
STEP 4. Add pomegranate powder or mango powder before putting it in serving dish.

HANDY TIPS:
Aubergine/eggplant can be roasted right on the stove by putting it on a metal mesh or in the oven. Conventional recipe requires it to be roasted in a clay oven called tandoor. To get the smoky flavour on an oven or stove roasted eggplant, follow the process in smoking hot tip

To ensure energy efficiency and minimize carbon footprint of your cooking, put the eggplant in the oven when you are using the oven for some other baking. Roasted eggplant can be stored in fridge for days before you make the bhartha/Mash.

To save time for this recipe use pre sautéed onions that you stored in your fridge the last the time around. (remember the save time for next time tip)

Cocothai curry-गरीथाई करी


SERVES: 3-4

Why this recipe?

Gluten Free , Quicker than any quick recipe. Just 3 Steps

COOKING TIME: 6-8 minutes

INGREDIENTS:
1 teaspoon oil
2 teaspoons of sesame seeds(white til seeds)
1 tablespoon of Thai curry paste (Red, Green or Yellow)
1 can of coconut milk or coconut cream
500 grams of mixed frozen vegetables or fresh mixed veggies

STEP 1. Put sesame seeds in heated oil. Stir for 30 seconds and add thai curry paste to it.

STEP 2. Thaw frozen veggies in microwave for 2-3 minutes or steam fresh veggies with a cover in microwave for 2-3 minutes.

STEP 3:Add coconut milk, thawed frozen vegetables and salt. Keep it on the heat for 2-3 minutes with lid covered. Let it simmer for 3-4 minutes with lid covered.

HANDY TIPS:thumb_IMG_0381_1024
1. You can add boneless chicken or any other meat to make it a non-vegetarian option.
2. This preparation can be served as a soup, a topping on grilled veggies or meats or as curry to go with rice or with roti, naan or bread.
3. Bring your creative side to play and add some flavourful herbs like lemon basil, rosemary, cilantro or dill.
4. If you do not have readymade curry paste, make a paste with ginger, green chillies and fresh curry leaves or coriander leaves for a green curry.

Coconut Veggie – Cocotom curry-तु॑गटम सब्ज़ी


SERVES: 3-4

Why this recipe?

Gluten Free , Quicker than a quick recipe. 

COOKING TIME: 6-8 minutes

INGREDIENTS:
1 teaspoon oil
2 teaspoons of mustard seeds
5-10 tender curry leaves
2 medium sized chopped tomatoes
1 can of coconut milk or coconut cream
500 grams of mixed frozen or fresh vegetables
½ teaspoon of red chilli powder
1 square inch of frozen chopped green chilli
2 square inch of frozen grated ginger or 25 grams fresh ginger

STEP 1. Put mustard seeds and curry leaves in heated oil. Stir for 30 seconds to a minute.
STEP 2. Add chopped tomatoes, ginger, green chilli and red chilli powder and let it simmer for 2 minutes with lid covered.
STEP 3. Thaw frozen vegetables or steam fresh veggies in microwave in the meanwhile for 2-3 minutes
STEP 4. Add coconut milk, thawed frozen vegetables and salt. Keep it on the heat for 2-3 minutes with lid covered.

HANDY TIPS:thumb_IMG_0374_1024
1. You can add boneless chicken or any other meat to make it a non-vegetarian option.
2. This preparation can be served as a soup, a topping on grilled veggies or meats or as curry to go with rice or with roti, naan or bread.
3. Bring your creative side to play and add some flavourful herbs like lemon basil, rosemary, cilantro or dill.

Luscious Indian baby pumpkin-पश्छिम के बेसनी टिंडे


SERVES: 2-3

GLUTEN FREE, HIGH IN PROTEIN AND FIBRE

Why this recipe? How is it green? How am I contributing to making this earth green by following four steps or less recipes?

Using Pressure Cooker will take 8-10 minutes whereas it will take 20-25 minutes in a regular pan.

You save: 70% of fuel energy and 10 minutes of your precious time that is about 5 to 8% of the total time you spend in kitchen on an average (assuming you spend a total of 2-3 hours in a day in the kitchen)

This is a completely gluten free recipe that is a delicacy from Western India.

COOKING TIME: 10 minutes

INGREDIENTS:
1 teaspoon oil
2 teaspoons jeera (cumin)
1 pinch of hing (asafoetida powder)
1 big tomato chopped
1 tablespoon besan (chickpea flour)
½ kilo tinda (baby pumpkin), each cut into 4 pieces
1 teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon red chilli powder
½ tablespoon haldi (turmeric powder)
½ teaspoon garam masala (all spice)
1 square inch of frozen chopped green chilli
2 square inch of frozen grated ginger or 25 grams fresh ginger
100 ml or 1/2 glass of water
Dhania (coriander) leaves for garnish

STEP 1. Put asafoetida powder and cumin seeds in heated oil and let it brown.
STEP 2. Add chopped tomatoes and besan (chickpea flour), sauté it with tomatoes for 2-3 minutes for chickpea flour to roast. This will take 1-2 minutes.
STEP 3. Add all of the rest of ingredients and 1/2 glass of water before you close the pressure cooker/pan lid.
STEP 4. Let it whistle 1 time (4-5 minutes) and open the cooker after all steam is released (it might take 5-7 minutes). Add garam masala and coriander leaves as you serve.

HANDY TIPS:baby pumpkin

Asafoetida has a very unique flavour, the recipe will still come out fine, even if you decide not to use it.

Always wait for the steam in pressure cooker to release by itself. This is a safety precaution as well as retains all flavour of the food.

Save Time for the Next Time-एक सलाह वक़्त बचाने वाली


Here is a tip to get the quick cooking going and to save time on the days you are really pressed for it and yet want to make something nice and elaborate. Most sumptuous indian curries and dishes require sautéed onion and this is what takes time. So, be smart and keep some chopped sautéed onions in your refrigerator. The day you are making a recipe with onions, plan on peeling and chopping some extra onions to save them for the next time. You can also do this on a weekend or at a time when you are anyway in the kitchen cooking something else and have your hands free in between to peel the onions and drop them in a chopper. Sauté all onions together for your current recipe as well as for the next one. Save sautéed onion in small freezer bags/containers for the next time for quick use. This has been a trick that has saved me time on many occasions. For some my upcoming recipes I will be using ready sautéed onions from my fridge. It’s all about saving time, the most precious thing..efficient use of time in the kitchen this time around will save some time for the next time you are in the kitchen.

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SPICY SWEET SQUASH/PUMPKIN-खट्टा मीठा सीताफ़ल


SERVES: 3-4

GLUTEN FREE- LOADED WITH VITAMIN A,C and FIBRE -QUICK TO MAKE

COOKING TIME: 8-10 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

1 teaspoon oil
1 small squash/pumpkin (about 500 grams) cut into 2 inch pieces with skin
1 pinch hing (Asafoetida powder)
2 teaspoons jeera (Cumin)
2 teaspoons methi seeds (Fenugreek)
1 teaspoon crushed saunf (Fennel seeds)
1 teaspoon sugar
1.5 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoons red chilli powder
¼ teaspoon garam masala

 

STEP 1.  Put hing (Asafoetida powder), methi seeds (Fenugreek seeds) and jeera (Cumin seeds) into heated oil, sauté for 20-30 seconds.

STEP 2.  Throw in the cut pieces of squash/pumpkin, sugar, salt, red chilli powder and ¾ cup of water.

STEP 3. Cover the pan and let everything cook until squash turns soft and turns a little dark in colour.

STEP 4.  Add garam masala and serve with coriander leaves garnish

HANDY TIP:thumb_IMG_0138_1024

Asafoetida has a very unique flavour, the recipe will still come out fine, even if you decide not to use it.

You do not have to take the skin off for most sitaphal/petha (in India)(squash/pumpkin in North America) for this recipe, however if you have already used a particular kind of pumpkin that is known for coarse skin, you may remove the skin.

 

Sarson Saag -Mustard/Rapini/Broccoli Medley – प॑जाबी शान-सरसो॑ का साग


SERVES: 4

GLUTEN FREE- LOADED WITH MINERALS AND FIBRE -QUICK TO MAKE

Why this recipe? How is it green and quick? How am I contributing to making this earth green by following this four steps or less recipe?

Using Pressure Cooker will take 10 minutes whereas it will take 15-30 minutes in a regular pan. 

Using frozen chopped spinach, fenugreek leaves, garlic, green chilli and ginger will save 10-12 minutes of your time.

By using this recipe you save: 50% of fuel energy and 15 minutes of your precious time that is about 5 to 8% of the total time you spend in kitchen on an average (assuming you spend a total of 2-3 hours in a day in the kitchen)

COOKING TIME: 10 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 tablespoon oil
1 cinnamon stick (dal chini)
1 star anise (chakraphool)
1 big cardamom (elaichi)
2 bay leaf (tez patta)
1 bunch of mustard (sarson) / rapini leaves (half kilo) or Broccoli florets
10 frozen spinach (palak) pellets (100 grams)
3 frozen fenugreek (methi leaves) pellets (100 grams) or 50 grams of dried fenugreek (methi) leaves
1 large onion – chopped any size
1 large tomato -chopped any size
1 inch frozen crushed green chilli
2 inch frozen garlic or 4 crushed cloves
2 inch frozen ginger or 50 grams freshly grated ginger
1 tea spoon salt
2 teaspoons red chilli powder
2 tablespoons coriander powder
1.5 teaspoons all spice (garam masala)
Butter dollop or butter oil (ghee) for topping (optional).

STEP 1. Put cinnamon stick (dal chini), star anise (chakraphool), big cardamom (eliachi) and bay leaf (tez patta) into heated oil, let them get brown

STEP 2. Add rest of the ingredients except all spice (garam masala) and cook for 2 whistles in cooker or until everything is tender in a pan (about 10-15 minutes).

STEP 3. Remove whole spices and run the hand grinder for 1 to 2 minutes right into the cooker/pan to make it smooth. You can then put the whole spices back in.

Step 4. Add garam masala and let it simmer for 5 minutes until you see that water has evaporated. Add butter or ghee, if desired.

HANDY TIPS:thumb_IMG_0232_1024
As very little oil is used to prepare this recipe, you can add a dollop of butter or butter oil (ghee) when serving.
You can replace the mustard leaves with fresh or frozen broccoli florets or rapini if the mustard leaves are not available. It will give close to the same original sarson saag (Mustard) taste.

What is a Pressure Cooker?

A pressure cooker is the only saviour of earth! I am not joking.. the rate at which mankind is currently consuming fuel energy, it is only the pressure cooking that can make a significant difference over time on the carbon footprint that our beloved planet is taking on. One of the main elements of green cooking is using pressure cookers. Pressure cookers not only cook food quickly but also retain the vitamins and minerals that are otherwise lost using other cooking methods.

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Pressure cookers have been in use in most parts of Asia, more so in India and Asia for decades now. Trust me, they are safe. You just need to understand how they work. There can however be a little bit of a learning curve if you’re using a pressure cooker for the first time. It’s important to know how to get started safely. If you know how the basic mechanism works it will be easy for you operate it with ease.

There are a wide variety of pressure cookers available in different shapes and sizes. All work on the same principle. When the pressure cooker is heated by the stove, the heat produces steam which cooks food faster by using the effects of pressure combined with heat.

A pressure cooker consists of the main pan, a lid, a rubber gasket that goes on the lid to seal pressure and a steam release system that includes a whistle and a safety valve. The whistle blows when steam reaches its maximum capacity. This is a way to time the cooking as well as a sign that the pressure cooker is working properly. The cooking time for many of my recipes is measured by the number of whistles that blow!