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North Indian Punjabi Recipes

North Indian Punjabi Recipes
If Punjabi recipes tempt your taste buds, then this page is a must-visit. Take a peep into Anita Chahal aunty's kitchen and see what authentic Punjabi food is all about. You will also find fusion recipes from Anita aunty's Punjabi kitchen. Not to mention, she has started to share OPOS recipes as well.

Authentic South Indian Recipes

Authentic South Indian Recipes
If you love south Indian food, do not leave without checking this page. Dedicated to Chitra Balachander, a south Indian homemaker, the page is all about taking a journey into her south Indian kitchen. Travel with me to her kitchen to savor traditional south Indian food.

Bengali Sukto Recipe



Bengali sukto


Bottle gourd (Lauki) is not a favorite with anyone. It wasn't happily savored in my home either unless I learned a Bengali recipe that uses boiled lauki.
I must say anyone who tries this SUKTO recipe will fall in love with lauki smile emoticon

Introduced to me by my Bengali neighbor - this traditional recipe is a treasure! In north India, we couldn't have thought of this version of lauki.

Thanks to the fusion of recipes these days,and of course, the Internet, we get to savor and learn recipes from across the country, if not the world. It's great to learn about the food habits of people from across the world.

Let's come back to the sukto recipe.


I have been in love with traditional recipes. When I learned this recipe, I was on cloud nine. There is a funny story behind my learning of Bengali sukto recipe. Would talk about it later.

The star ingredients in this recipe are lauki and karela. I did not have karela so I made it without bitter gourd. Nevertheless, it tastes yum. Ideally it is not so watery, but I kept it little flowy!

It has become a favorite ever since. A healthy blend of boiled vegetables, sukto uses bottle gourd and bitter gourd as star ingredients. You may include other veggies as you wish. However, I often make with bottle gourd, bitter gourd, potato, and cucumber.

Recipe
Bottle gourd (Lauki)- 1 medium size
Potatoes-3
Cucumber (kheera) - 1 (optional)
Bitter gourd (karela)-1
Mustard seeds (soaked) - 1 tsp
Poppy seeds (soaked) - 2 tsp
Green chilly/red chilly
Panch Phoron - 1/2 tsp (a blend of equal proportions of mustard seeds, cumin seeds, nigella seeds, fennel seeds, fenugreek seeds)
Mustard Oil- 1 tsp
Ginger -1 tsp
Salt as per taste
Sugar- 2 pinches

Process

  1. Cut bottle gourd, potatoes, and cucumber in small pieces and boil with little water. Add salt+ turmeric.(2 whistles will do).
  2. Soak mustard seeds and poppy seeds in 1 tbsp of water for an hour (water should be just enough to soak the seeds. we do not want more water). After an hour or two, grind mustard+poppy+green chilly/red chilly together. Set aside.
  3. Take little oil and stir fry bitter gourd. (Sometimes I skip adding bitter gourd, though this is a must-have for a traditional poshto recipe.
  4. Take oil in a pan.
  5. Add panch phoron. Let it splutter.
  6. Add grated/ground ginger. Stir fry.
  7. Add mustard+poppy paste and fry very well.
  8. Add little water and keep stirring.
  9. Add sugar.
  10. Add boiled veggies and stir well.
  11. Keep stirring.
  12. Add little water. You can add the water used for boiling the veggies.
  13. Mix well. Stir for 5 mins until water evaporates. If you want to keep it watery, do not let the whole water evaporate.
  14. Add fried bitter gourd and mix well.
  15. Switch off the flame. Enjoy with steamed rice. I can have this soul-pleasing food with roti (Indian flat bread).

Basbousa - No Butter, No Oil, No Sugar Eggless Semolina Coconut Cake

eggless suji oats coconut cake
Basbousa is a Lebanese cake that uses semolina flour, which is healthier alternative to white/all-purpose flour. What attracted me most to the eggless cake was its use of semolina, yogurt & coconut. The native Egyptian cake also belongs to traditional Middle East.
The sweet moist cake made from cooked semolina uses soaked simple syrup that gives Basbousa a glossy look.

If health is a top priority, but you still want to indulge in, this guilt-free Basbousa cake can come in handy.

 This yogurt cake flavored with coconut is the solution to all your cake baking problems.  Simple, quick, and healthy sugar-free semolina cake recipe that you would want to bake again and agai

The semolina (suji)-coconut cake is sweetened with dates and flavored with coconut. The roasted semolina flour takes its taste to another level. If this isn't enough, I have added oatmeal to the recipe to include some fiber to the recipe.

Oatmeal benefits are aplenty. Let's do a recap here


This is my take on the famous Lebanese Basbousa cake - Mediterranean sweet semolina cake.

I must say this is the tastiest cake on earth.

Here's some feedback on this cake by Radha Natarajan:
feedback on modified Basbousa by Radha Natarajan


Enjoy the modified Basbousa guilt free!

Eggless Semolina Coconut Cake Ingredients
Suji - 1 cup (roasted)
Coconut- 1 cup (desiccated - I dried fresh coconut on gas)
Oats- 1/4 cup
Curd- 1/2 cup
Milk- 1/2 cup +1/4 cup
Cream- 1/4 cup (I used malai)
Baking soda- 1/2 tsp
Lemon juice - 1 tsp
Dates- 8-10 pieces (if you like it sweeter, you may add more dates or replace dates with sugar)
Almonds -15-20 (8-10 for garnishing)
Cinnamon- 1 tsp
Nutmeg powder - 1/4 tsp (optional)

suji cake before baking


semolina oats cake
Eggless Suji-Oats Cake Procedure

  1. Roast suji.
  2. Roast coconut (if you have desiccated powder, then no need for roasting. I had fresh ground coconut, so I had to roast it on gas).
  3. Mix suji and coconut.
  4. Roast Oats for 2-3 mins (keep an eye on oats, they roast too quickly).
  5. Once Oats are roasted, add 1/3 cup of milk to them.
  6. Meanwhile, boil dates with little water until they become tender. Remove the scum.
  7. Mix cream, 1/2 cup milk,  and curd.
  8. Add cinnamon, nutmeg to the milk mix.
  9. Whisk milk mix with dates, almonds, and oats. I used a whisker to blend everything well.
  10. Add this to suji-coconut mix.
  11. Blend well, but do not over mix.
  12. The batter should be like idli batter.
  13. Take baking soda and mix with lemon juice.
  14. Instantly mix with the batter. Just mix twice.
  15. Pour the batter in a greased baking pan.
  16. Refrigerate the batter for 30 minutes
  17. Preheat the oven for 10 mins at 180 degrees.
  18. After half an hour, take out the batter and cut into shapes and place chopped almonds on each piece (as in the picture).
  19. Bake the cake at 180 degrees for 20-25 mins (time may vary depending on your oven). I baked in microwave convection.
  20. Check after 25 minutes. If done, let the baking pan stay in the oven for 10 mins.
  21. Let the cake cool down completely. Do not touch unless it has cooled down. (I suggest keeping it for an 1 hour or longer). Else, the cake may crumble.
  22. Enjoy this healthy Basbousa cake with a cup of tea!
  23. You may bake this semolina coconut cake no sugar on a stovetop - Place the baking pan in a cooker covered with the lid without whistle. Keep the flame on high for 2 minutes and then lower the flame. It will take about 20- 25 minutes for baking the sugarless cake with semolina and coconut.
  24. Enjoy a finely baked aroma while the cake is baking!

Happy baking this eggless sugarfree semolina cake with coconut guilt free.

Atta Nankhatai: Whole Wheat Flour Cookies, Healthy Indulgence


In pursuit of healthy recipes, I am now attempting a few simple cookie recipes without raising agents. You are here for a no baking powder cookie recipe as well. Worry not! I am making a collection of such cookie and cake recipes that do not use raising agents. I have tried out a few and shall continue to update the page as I go along.

This page is all about healthy nankhatai - say oats nankhatai, and atta nankhatai.

atta nankhatai

So let's come back to the atta nankhatai recipe without baking powder. I would have never thought of it a year back. But these days, I am experimenting with a few bakes to make my previous baked goodies healthier.  

Let's see what I have come up with here in this new atta oats nankhatai recipe without baking soda or powder.
nankhatai atta whole wheat flour

Ingredients
1/2 cup- whole wheat flour
1/2 cup- oatmeal (or you make take an additional 1/2 cup of whole wheat instead)
2 tbsp- desi ghee/ butter at room temperature
2 tsp- olive oil (or any other vegetable oil)
1/4 cup- jaggery powder or sugar powder
cardamom powder for flavor
finely chopped nuts of your choice
1 tsp- milk (optional)
wheat nankhatai no baking soda, no baking powder

How to make atta nankhatai without baking soda or powder

  1. Mix sugar or jaggery with butter/ghee and oil in a bowl and whisk until the mix turns light and fluffy.
  2. Throw in cardamom powder. Mix.
  3. Make sure the wet ingredient mix looks light.
  4. Add whole wheat flour and gather all ingredients.
  5. If the dough looks dry, please add milk - half teaspoon at a time.
  6. We just need to collect the dough. DO NOT KNEAD. Kneading will create gluten, which will make your nankhatai chewy.
  7. Add in finely chopped or ground nuts if you want.
  8. Preheat the oven/microwave convection at 180 degrees for 10 mts.
  9. Roll out into lemon-sized balls. Or you may take a small round spoon or ice cream scoop - fill it with dough and place each ball on the baking tray - lined evenly. Just be careful with the dough. It is more crumbly.
  10. Bake the atta nankhatais for 15-18 mts. Keep an eye on your nankhatais after 15 mts.
  11. The temperature settings vary from oven to oven - some ovens may need 20 mts as well.
  12. Allow the nankhatai to cool down completely and carefully store them in an airtight jar. Upon cooling, there is less risk of the oats nankhatai crumbling.  I did not add milk for binding, so my nankhatais were crumbling. So I realized adding milk should help bind the nankhatais properly.
  13. But this is one oats nankhatai recipe that you can enjoy guilt free.
  14. It's time to indulge in healthy, melt-in-the-mouth oats wheat nankhatais.

Here's the second nankhatai recipe that uses baking powder


atta nankhatai
Atta nankhatais? Surprised, are you?

Of course, you have heard about besan nankhatai and maida nankhatai, but nankhatai with atta might make you a little surprised. But worry not! I have given this recipe a try and found that this does make a happy happy treat for me.








Atta Nankhatais: Easy to Dish Out, Delicious in Every Bite
Whole wheat flour cookies anyone? If you are a cookie lover as well as a health freak, then you have got to find a balance between both.

While baked goodies aren't the best thing on earth to savor for health freaks, you can certainly enjoy these bakery items guilt free on some days.

My funda is eat one cookie with a cup of tea. After all, one never hurts.!!


Nankhatais are a hot favorite in my home. In fact, I have been in love with besan nankhatais since childhood. After having tried nankhatais with chickpea biscuit recipe, I attempted using wheat, and the results do not disappoint either.

After all, whole wheat flour cookies get an edge over maida (all-purpose flour/refined flour/white flour). I have stopped buying white flour for some time now. I am happy I try to avoid this kind of bleached flour that only adds empty calories to your body.

whole wheat flour benefits




besan nankhatai



Baking with whole grains is simple and addictive. As a health freak, you might want to experiment with different whole grains to find a perfect balance between taste and health. Surprisingly, most of the time, you would end up with dramatic results that give you delectable goodies.

Yes, atta nankhatai, unlike its traditional nankhatai counterpart, is another healthy yet yummilcious blend of whole wheat flour and spices that led it a unique flavor, while clarified butter helps the healthy cookies retain shape and texture. You won't mind gobbling up one cookie fresh from the oven.


Wheat Nankhatai Ingredients
1 cup - Whole wheat flour
4 tbsp - ghee (clarified butter) - you may add more and reduce the amount of milk)
1 tsp- Elaichi (green cardamom) powder
1-2 tbsp- milk (you may skip milk if you want to add more butter)
1/2 tsp - nutmeg powder (jaiphal) - Optional
1/2 tsp- baking powder
4 tbsp -Sugar (as per taste)

Atta Nankhatai Procedure

  • Sieve flour with baking powder 5-6 times.
  • Mix ghee and sugar. Whisk very well.
  • Make sure it is fluffy
  • Add cardamom powder and nutmeg powder to the ghee-sugar mix
  • Give it a good mix
  • Add wet and dry ingredients.
  • Combine the flour into dough. DO NOT KNEAD. Just gather the ingredients into a ball.
  • If the dough feels dry, add little amount of milk.
  • Make small balls and press them little
  • You may make cuts on the balls with a knife
  • Bake for 15-20 mins at 180 degrees. It may take longer.
  • I baked on a skillet (tawa) - Place tawa on a gas stove. Put salt/sand over it. Place a stand and on the stand, keep the baking tray. Make sure there is some distance between the cookies. This will ensure even cooking. Cover with a big vessel so that the wheat nankhatais cook well from all sides. Keep an eye on them after 10 mins.
  • Once done, take them out on a wire rack so they cool down completely before you can store these baked goodies.
  • Enjoy with a hot cup of tea!
  • You may want to try the delectable classics besan nankhatai - chickpea biscuit recipe.

Poi Saag Bengali Style Mix Veg Recipe


A sheer delight for vegetarians, this Bengali Poi saag recipe, with Poi, pumpkin, potato, and capsicum, is a soul pleaser :) Add vegetables of your choice and delight your family with this easy peasy recipe!

I learned this recipe from a Bengali aunt, who has shared this delicacy with me umpteen times.I just love the sheer aroma and taste of this Bengali poi saag recipe.

poi saag recipe




Bengali Poi Mix Veg Recipe

Poi Saag - a bunch
Pumpkin - cubed-
Potato-cubed
Capsicum- thinly sliced
Green chilly
Salt
Sugar-2 pinches
Panch phoron- 1 tsp
Bay leaf -1
Mustard oil- 1 tsp


  • Heat oil in a vessel. 
  • Add panch phoron and bay leaf. Let the spices splutter. 
  • Add potatoes. Stir for a minute. 
  • Add salt & turmeric. Mix well. 
  • Add sugar. Mix.
  • Add the remaining vegetables.
  • Give them a good mix. Heat on a high flame for a minute. Keep stirring.
  • Cover & cook for 5 mins on a low flame. Open the lid and mix everything well.
  • Cover again for 5-10 mins.
  • Check if the vegetables are done. Make sure the veggies aren't overcooked.

Switch off the flame and enjoy with rice or roti :)

Eggless Semolina Cake Recipe With Coconut


suji coconut cake
The first time I came across semolina cake recipe, I was left wondering as to how our very own suji can be used for baking. I had never thought about it.

Instantly I baked an eggless semolina cake with that recipe from Radha Natrajan.

Once I experiment with something, my hands start itching to exploit that ingredient further. This is exactly what I have done to this recipe.

I love cakes.Of course, baked goodies aren't the best choices for a healthy me. But I do not indulge in these goodies frequently - once in a blue moon! yay!  Except my favorite cookies - that too, one cookie with a cup of tea. This is how I go about it!

When I am choosing healthy ingredients for my recipes, I can still choose to indulge. Isn't it?

But I rarely do so. I have my self-imposed limitations that do not let me rest. Yes, I am happy being myself. Why shouldn't I?

Yes, I prefer healthy baking - baking with healthy ingredients.


Did you know semolina is rich in carbs and proteins? But unlike white flour, it is not empty calories. Obtained from wheat endosperm, semolina is a healthier alternative to all-purpose flour. Of course, it does not give you the same texture of baked goodies or even fried snacks, but it is still a healthier alternative, which is easy to cook.



Do try my momos semolina recipe!

So if you are looking for a healthier cake option, look no further than this flavorful basbousa my style -easy recipe using semolina flour. Or I should say Suji-coconut cake my style! With the goodness of coconut and aroma of fennel, this easy semolina cake recipe is a must try at least once.

You will find numerous easy semolina recipes Indian style on this website. You are just a click away - from idlis to cutlets, from cakes to desserts, from sweets to savories.

Semolina Cake recipe

Suji - 1 cup
Coconut- 1 cup (you can use dry powder - I used fresh grated coconut)
Oil - 1/4 th cup
Powdered Sugar- 1/4th cup (you can add more as per your taste preference)
Milk -1/4th cup
Yogurt/curd - 1/4th cup
Fennel seeds powder (saunf) - 1tsp
Baking soda- 1/2 tsp
Lemon juice - 1 tsp
Nuts of your choice (you may use tutty fruity as well)

suji cake

Preparation

  1. Mix suji, sugar. coconut, milk, yogurt, and fennel seeds. Keep the suji for fermentation for 15-20 minutes.
  2. Keep a tawa on the gas stove. Place a wire stand upon it. Turn on the gas for preheating.
  3. Once suji ferments, mix nuts.
  4. In a separate tablespoon, mix baking soda with lemon juice and instantly add it to suji mix.
  5. Mix once. DON'T OVERMIX.
  6. Keep a baking pan greased and pour the batter in there (the batter should be like idli batter - not too runny). Pat the tin twice.
  7. Place the cake tin over the stand. Cover with a big utensil that covers the whole of tawa so that steam does not escape. Keep on low flame.
  8. Cover & cook for 20-30 minutes (took me longer). Just keep an eye on it.
  9. Since this is suji cake and contains coconut, it won't brown much. Worry not!. Once it is done, just take it out of the baking pan, place on a wire rack upside down. Keep the wire stand on the tawa. Cover with a big utensil and cook on medium flame for 6-8 minutes. You will be surprised to see the browned cake top. Enjoy with a cup of hot tea :)

Note: If you do not have coconut, you may skip it and add tutty fruity instead to make  tutty fruitty semolina cake. There are many more recipes using semolina flour. Don't forget to browse through the pages.

Here is pan fried semolina recipe - kachori or cutlet.
semolina kachori (pan fried)
semolina coconut cake

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