Happy Diwali

Wishing you and your family a very Happy Diwali 🙂



Brown bread baked in Convection oven


Making your own bread needs a little extra effort but the fragrance and the taste of the freshly baked bread at home will make it worth while.

This was my first experience baking bread and hence I have tried with basic ingredients. Using just the whole wheat flour will make the bread dense – suggest adding all-purpose flour (or Maida) till you are comfortable with the measurements or getting the right consistency.

Let’s get started.


– All purpose flour/maida – 1 cup

– Whole wheat flour/atta – 2 cups

– Active dry yeast – 1.5 tsp

– Honey – 4 tsp

– Organic cane sugar – 2 tsp

– Regular salt or rock salt – 1.5 tsp or as desired

– Yogurt – 2 tbsp

– Refined (Sunflower/Rice bran/Olive) oil – 2tbsp


– 1-2 tbs of roasted (pumpkin/sunflower/flax) seeds or raisins or walnuts etc.,

– 0.5 cup ground oats


a. Yeast proofing:


1.Mix ½ tbsp sugar and yeast in warm water and allow to sit at room temperature for 10-12 mins.

2.The frothy texture indicates that the proofing is complete


b. Mixing/Kneading the ingredients

1. Sieve both the flours together with salt

2. Add flours along with other ingredients to the bowl of yeast mixture (after the yeast solution bubbles and is frothy).

3. Mix well and knead to a smooth and soft dough. Use warm water to knead the dough. Use extra wheat flour or oil as required to get the right texture.


4. The dough should be slightly sticky.

5. Rub oil on the whole dough and keep covered with a damp kitchen towel and lid for up to 1 hour.

c. Leavening the dough


1. Lightly punch and knead the dough again and leave for 1 more hour until leavened.

2. Roll a single log of the dough with the edges tucked town on both the sides

3. Grease the loaf pan and add the tucked edges of the rolled dough facing downwards

4. Cover the loaf pan with a damp cloth and lid for 45 min to 1 hour.


5. The dough should have risen as indicated in the picture.

6. Preheat the oven at 200 C for at least 10 minutes

7. Place the loaf pan in the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until the bread sounds hollow when tapped.

8. I used a convection oven and baked extra 3 mins at 180 C to get the right consistency.



– Place the loaf pan on the wire rack

– Place a small cup with water under the wire rack to retain the moisture in the bread

– Cover the surface of the bread with aluminium foil or butter paper if the bread turns dark brown or black.

d. Yummy brown bread ready!!

1. Remove the bread from the loaf pan and allow it to cool by placing it on a wired rack.


2. Slice the fluffy and soft bread. It is now ready to be served.


3. Store your bread slices in the bread box.

Share your comments after your successful baking experience 🙂

To download the steps in pdf format, Kindly refer to the Instructable link http://www.instructables.com/id/Brown-Bread-Baked-in-Convection-Oven

Quinoa with Soya chunks and Veggies

Quinoa has excellent source of protein and fibre. I have been using it for a while now and tried different recipes with that. I used the Organic tricolour/white quinoa from Trader Joe’s.


Compared to the Indian sooji/broken wheat, I personally found Quinoa to be delicious. Buying this grain in India is expensive.

The benefits of quinoa are available in the following link Quinoa benefits.

Ingredients: (4 servings)

Quinoa – 1 cup

Vegetables of your choice (carrots/ beans/corn/ baby corn/potato/zucchini/peas/red or yellow capsicum,etc) – finely chopped – 3/4 cup

Onion(big) – 1

Tomato medium sized – 2 or pasta sauce – 2 to 3 tbs,

Soya chunks(small) boiled and drained – handful

Olive oil – 1 tbs

Green Chilli slit- 1

Mustard – 1tsp

Urad dhal – 1 tsp

Cumin seeds- 1 tsp

Asafoetida – a pinch

Curry leaves – 4-5

Salt to taste


I used a small pressure pan to cook this easy recipe.

  1. Heat oil in the pan and add mustard seeds.
  2. When the mustard seeds start crackling, add cumin seeds along with urad dhal and sauté them lightly.
  3. Add the green chilli, curry leaves, asafoetida and fry for few seconds.
  4. sauté onions till they turn translucent.
  5. Add the pasta sauce or chopped tomato and fry for a minute till they soften. (I used pasta sauce)
  6. To the above mixture add the veggies and fry for another minute.
  7. Pour 2 and a half cups of water to the mixture and add salt as required.
  8. When the mixture starts to boil, add the soya chunks along with quinoa and pressure cook for 2 to 3 whistles.
  9. Garnish with coriander if desired.
  10. Serve with pickle.

Served with fried Cashew and Kara Boondi for the kids:

quinoa_topped with boondi

Curry leaves Dosa

The yummiest dosa packed with lots of nutrients and a super hit amongst my family. My close friend is a Bengali and she tasted this dosa at my house and has started making this dosa every week. She supplies the batter to me when I need 🙂

This dosa comes out spongy and the aroma from the curry leaves and the small onion tempts our taste palettes.

The benefits of curry leaves can be read in the mentioned link Curry Leaves


Raw rice – 1 1/2 cup

par-boiled rice – 1/2 cup

Poha/Flattened rice – 1/2 cup

Toor dal – 1 tbsp

Urad dal – 1/4 cup

Cumin seeds – 1 tsp

Fenugreek seeds – 1tbsp

Small Onion/Shallot – 10 or 12

Curry leaves – 1 cup

Green chillies – 2 or 3

salt – 1 tbs or as per your taste

Gingelly oil/ Sesame oil for smearing


  1. Soak the flattened rice separately.
  2. Soak the rest of the rice,seed and dal ingredients together for about 2 to 3 hours.
  3. Drain and grind the mixture to a smooth paste using water as required to a batter consistency.
  4. Grind the onion, curry leaves and the green chillies together and add to the above batter.
  5. Add salt to taste.
  6. Allow it to ferment for 5 to 6 hours.
  7. Heat a non-stick tava (griddle), sprinkle a little water on the tava (griddle) and wipe it off gently using a cloth.
  8. Pour a ladleful of the batter on it and spread it in a circular motion to make thick circle.
  9. Smear a little gingelly oil along the edges.
  10. Cover the dosa with a lid and cook on a medium flame. The steam cooks the top layer.
  11. Do not flip the dosa as the top portion of the dosa is cooked on covering.
  12. Serve immediately when the dosa is crisp at the bottom and spongy on top with Garlic Chutney or Sambar.

curry leaves_dosa

Let me know your comments after you taste it 🙂

Multicoloured nutritious chapati

As the subject goes, this chapati/roti has nutrients packed from spinach and beetroot. This is one of my kids’ favourite dish. The multicoloured chapatis are visually very appealing to the kids.

Spinach is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A (in the form of carotenoids), manganese, folate, magnesium, iron, copper, vitamin B2, vitamin B6, vitamin E, calcium, potassium, and vitamin C. It is a very good source of dietary fiber, phosphorus, vitamin B1, zinc, protein, and choline. More details about this leafy vegetable can be found in this link: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=43
Beetroot is an excellent source of folic acid and a very good source of fibre, manganese and potassium.
The green leaves of the beetroot can be used instead of spinach as they are rich in calcium, iron and vitamins A and C. The greens should not be overlooked.
Ingredients: (for 8-9 chapatis )
Palak leaves puree – 1/4 cup
Beetroot puree – 1/4 cup
Whole wheat flour/atta – 2 1/2 cups
Salt as required
Cooking oil/ghee – 1 tbs
1. The above mentioned puree is made by grinding the leaves/vegetable individually in a blender/mixer grinder.
2. Split the whole wheat flour into 3 bowls.
3. Add Beetroot puree and spinach puree respectively to the first and second bowl. Leave the third bowl as-is.
4. Add required amount of salt and oil to each of those bowls and knead them into a soft dough.
5. Roll the dough from each of those bowls into three separate Chapatis.
6. Stack the green, plain and red dough one above the other and roll it into cylindrical shape.spinach_beetroot_chappati_1
7. Slice the cylinder into medium sized pieces.
8. Roll each of the cut pieces into chapatis.
9. Cook it on the tawa and smear with a dab of ghee.
10. Serve with pickle, curd or cheese spread.
1. To make the chapati more nutritious, 1 tsp of oats flour/amaranth flour can be added to the wheat flour.
2. Carrot may be used in place of beetroot; carrot adds orange colour to the chapati.
3. The puree or the flour consistency may be altered based on the requirement.

Garlic bread rolls

This is the first bread recipe that I baked with the help of a recipe that I found on the internet. My anxiety levels were quite high right from the beginning until tasting the garlic bread. The taste was awesome and the flavour of garlic filled my home 🙂

Thanks to 

garlic_bread_roll2 garlic_bread_roll


For the dough:

  • 1 and ½ cup whole wheat flour/atta
  • 2 tbsp all purpose flour/maida
  • 1 tsp dry active yeast
  • 150-160 ml water – approx ⅔ cup water (depending on the quality of flour, you may have to add less or more)
  • ½ tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • ½ tsp salt
For the garlic spread
  • 2 tbsp dairy butter or vegan butter
  • ½ to ⅔ tbsp minced or chopped garlic or finely crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp chopped celery
  • ¼ tsp dry oregano
  • 2 pinch carom seeds/ajwain
  • 1 or 2 tsp nutritional yeast (optional)
  • ½ tbsp sunflower oil or olive oil
  • salt and pepper as required
  1. Mix  ½ tbsp sugar and yeast in warm water. allow to sit at room temperature for 10-12 mins.
  2. Add the flours, salt and oil to the bowl of yeast mixture after the yeast solution bubbled and frothy.
  3. Mix well and knead to a smooth and soft dough.
  4. Rub oil on the whole dough and keep covered for up to 1:30 to 2 hours until leavened.
  5. Beat the butter with a spoon till light and fluffy. add all the spices & herbs along with salt. mix well.
  6. Check the seasoning in the garlic spread and add more of the herbs, spices or salt if required.
  7. Lightly punch the dough before making the rolls on a work surface.
  8. Divide the dough into two parts.
  9. Take one part of the dough and on a lightly dusted flour, roll to a round or rectangle till you get ½ inch width in the rolled dough
  10. Spread the garlic butter evenly on the dough.
  11. Roll the dough till the end.
  12. Make a similar roll with the other part of the dough.
  13. Slice both the rolls
  14. First give a cut from the center and then equally cut the two parts. so you have now 4 equal slices of the rolled dough.
  15. Grease a pan in which all the 8 rolls will fit. place the rolls in the pan and brush their tops with remaining garlic butter. cover and let the rolls double up for 35-40 minutes.
  16. Sprinkle some sesame seeds on top of the rolls.
  17. Bake in a pre heated oven for 30-35 minutes at 180 degrees C till the tops are golden.
  18. Serve the garlic bread rolls with tea or coffee.

Cinnamon Water

Cinnamon as a spice has lots of health benefits and the details are available in the following link:



Cinnamon has been found to activate insulin receptors as well as stimulate important enzyme systems involved in carbohydrate metabolism. Therefore, it can regulate the levels of blood sugar and increase metabolism and this, combined with its ‘bad cholesterol’-reducing action makes it a wonderful weight loss aid.

I have posted this home-brew in Instructables at http://www.instructables.com/id/Cinnamon-Water



Water – 1 ltr

Cinnamon stick – 2 to 3 medium sticks


1. Soak the Cinnamon sticks in 1 litre of water for 3-4 hours.

2. Boil the water to half a litre and allow it to cool.

3. Drink this water in empty stomach before breakfast.

FYI: Adding a teaspoon of honey or lemon juice to the cinnamon water will enhance the taste and has additional benefits.

Cauliflower Sambar

Cauliflower is low in fat, low in carbohydrates but high in dietary fiber,water, and vitamin C, possessing high nutritional density. Steaming or microwaving better preserves anticancer compounds than boiling.

My husband indulges himself if I make this sambar and I don’t have to worry even if I have to buy a large flower 🙂

Cauliflower sambar
Cauliflower Sambar/Kuzhambu


Roasted Bengal Gram/ Pottu kadalai – 2 tsp
Sambar powder – 2 tsp
Coconut scraped – 3 tsp
Tomato medium sized – 1/2
Small onion – 2 to 3
Tamarind, lemon-sized, soaked in ½ cup of water for 10 minutes

Cauliflower medium sized -1

Toor dal, cooked – ½ cup

Mustard seeds – 1 tsp

Fenugreek seeds – ½ tsp

Curry leaves – 4-5

Coriander leaves to garnish

Salt to taste


1. Cut the cauliflower into big florets and steam in microwave for 2 mins. Ensure that the florets are not over-cooked.

2. Grind the ingredients that are in italics finely in a mixer grinder.

3. To the saucepan, add the ground mixture, cooked dhal and allow it to cook for few mins till the raw smell fades. Add salt.

4. Heat ¼ tsp of oil and sauté the mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, curry leaves and a pinch of asafoetida and add to the above mixture.

5. Add the half cooked cauliflower florets and allow it to boil with the mixture for few minutes. Kindly note that if the mixture boils for a long time then the florets will be over cooked and become mushy.

6. Garnish with coriander leaves.

Poondu karuvapillai milagu kuzhambu

Poondu(garlic) karuvapillai(curry leaves) milagu(pepper) kuzhambu(gravy) is another tasty south Indian dish that is prepared and served when one is recovering from fever or when the weather is very cold or as a special diet for feeding mothers. The garlic, pepper and curry leaves have lots of medicinal values and aid in easy digestion and improved lactation. This dish can be stored in the refrigerator and consumed within 10 days. This dish tastes best when mixed with rice and eaten with papad(appalam). Paruppu thuvaiyal is a good combination with this dish.

Poondu karuvapillai milagu kuzhambu:


Red Chilli – 4
Pepper corns – 1 tbs
Cumin seeds- 1 tsp
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Garlic pods – 10
Urad dal – 1tbs
Toor dal – ½ cup
Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
Tamarind, lemon-sized, soaked in ½ cup of water for 10 minutes
Curry leaves- ½ cup
Gingely oil – 2 tbs
Asafoetida – ½ tsp


1. Heat 1 tsp of oil in a pan and fry all the above ingredients except the mustard seeds,turmeric powder, asafoetida and tamarind. Add ¼ cup of water to the mixture and keep aside for 30 min. Fine grind the mixture.
2. Heat 2 tsp of oil in a kadai and sauté the mustard seeds, turmeric powder and asafoetida.
3. Squeeze out the thick tamarind juice using 2 cups of water and add to the above mixture. Add salt according to the taste and allow it to boil till the raw smell of the tamarind dissapears.
4. Add the ground mixture to the tamarind gravy and stir constantly till there are no lumps.
5. Add 1 tbs of gingely oil and allow it to boil and stir constantly till the oil seperates from the kuzhambu(gravy).

Sprouted Dalia(Broken Wheat) Upma

Sprouted Dalia is also known as Bulgar wheat or broken wheat. It is prepared after sprouting wheat of superior quality and then processing it on a solar-operated grinder, thus ensuring all the vitamins and minerals are well-preserved. When cooked, broken wheat has a very hearty, warm aroma and a grainy, delightful taste. It has a very good source of dietary fiber and manganese. It is also a good source of magnesium.

Ingredients (For 4 members) :

Sprouted Dalia rava – 1/2 cup
Onion, chopped – 1
Green chilli, chopped – 1
Green peas – 1/4 cup
Carrots, diced – 1/4 cup
Refined Oil – 1 tbs
salt to taste
Chopped coriander – 2 tbs


  1. Wash the dalia thoroughly. Blanch it in 2 cups of hot water for 4 minutes. Drain and keep aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a pressure cooker. Add the onion and green chilli and sauté till the onion turns translucent .
  3. Add the peas, carrots, dalia and salt and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes.
  4. Add 1 1/2 cups of water and pressure cook for 1 whistle.
  5. Garnish with the coriander and serve hot.


1. You can use any other vegetables of your choice.

2. You can use broken wheat instead of sprouted broken wheat.