August 31, 2020

Diabetic Friendly Methi Sprouts Pickle Recipe | How to make Fenugreek Sprouts Pickle | Vegan, Can be GF too

Yeah, you heard it right - Methi Sprouts Pickle !! At first, even I thought it was impossible - that for me to eat Methi (fenugreek) or for that matter to make pickle out of the same. But I saw this at a neighbour's house last year, and it didn't taste bitter like I thought it would. 

I learnt this from the old lady who was gracious enough to share her version. I quickened the time with making a smaller batch and  reduced the oil from the original version, but the taste was heavenly. 

Methi is traditionally included in South Indian spice powders like Rasam Powder, Sambhar Powder and Menthyada Hittu (a Spicy Condiment made with Methi Seeds). Methi is also given to lactating mothers in the form of laddu. My grand mom used to make us eat the seeds soaked in water overnight when we started menstruating stating that methi helps us strengthen the pelvis and hips that aid in child birth. 

For diabetics, its also recommended that overnight methi seeds (had with the soaked water) also lowers the Insulin. Although methi is bitter, this pickle is absolutely not.  

Sasmita gave us the theme of #BItterbutGood theme this week. She has an amazing collection of bakes and Bengali recipes, beautifully styled. 

This bitter-sweet pickle goes well with Dosa / Parathas / any flatbread OR steamed rice and is yummy with curd rice too :-)

Preparation Time: 2 days (for soaking and sprouting)
Cooking Time : 15 minutes
Makes : approx 100 gm of pickle and keeps for about 1 week to  10 days refrigerated.

You may also enjoy these pickles:


  • Methi / fenugreek seeds - 200 grams (sprouted)
  • Gingelly / Sesame oil - 1/4 cup (60 gram) + 3 tbsp (Can add a little more if required)
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tbsp
  • Methi Seeds - 1 tsp
  • Hing / Asafoetida - 1 pinch (skip for GF)
  • Turmeric - 1 tsp
  • Jaggery - 1 TBSP
  • Tamarind pulp - 1 TBSP
  • Red chilli powder - 2 tsp
  • Salt - to taste

Check out the Youtube Video embedded below. If you are visiting the channel for the first time, please like and subscribe to the Channel. Your valuable comments are welcome on the recipe too. 

August 30, 2020

No Bake Choco dipped Biscuits with Sprinkles | Quick Sweet Nibbles for Kids

Chocolate - that magical word that conjures up an entire universe of exotic dishes. From a vegan Chilli Chocolate Mousse to Triple Chocolate Muffins to Choco-chip Bread, the quick choco-bites are quite popular at home. Today's is a delicious treat for those kids' parties or even as a quick midnight snack for adults. The recipe can be easily tripled or multiplied based on the number of servings. The only wait time is till the chocolate discs set in the fridge. The rest is, literally, child's play.

The little munchkin was very excited to make this treat to congratulate her older sister on her board exam results. We wanted a quick treat, and with the lockdown, all pastry shops were closed. So, with just under 10 mins of prep time and 1 hour of setting time (yeah, I know that’s the hardest :p), this comes together almost immediately.  Needless to say, we are very grateful for the impromptu celebrations and the love between the two sisters. The treat itself was a smashing hit.

Mayuri suggested "Chocolate" as a theme for this month's challenge of #SShh Secret Cooking Challenge, and I was paired with Sujitha. Her Hot milk Cake caught my attention (which I plan to make without the eggs though :p).. Sujitha gave me butter scotch chips and Orange Cocoa Powder as the secret ingredients. I gave her Coconut and Caradamom as the secret ingredients. 

No bake and if you actually use the microwave (which we did on the second try) to melt the chocolate , there’s no reason you can’t be making this often. Mayuri’s Chocolate Time theme this month has seen us all dish out chocolatey treats. 

If you are a chocolate fan like my family, am sure today’s treat and the following too would surely indulge you. 

Prep time - 5 mins, Cook time - 15 mins ; 
Setting time - 45 min - 1 hour minimum
Serves - 4

What you need:
  • 4 Marie Biscuits (or any plain unsalted crackers)
  • Butterscotch Chips - 2 TBSP 
  • Choco Chips - 3 TBSP
  • Orange Cocoa Powder - 1 tsp
  • Butter - 1/2 tsp (optional) 
  • Vanilla extract - 1/8 tsp
  • Sprinkles - for topping

How to:
In a microwave safe bowl or over a double boiler, melt the choco chips and butterscotch chips till melted and glossy. At this point add the orange cocoa powder , extract and butter (if using). Mix well. 
When still slightly warm, gently dip the biscuits / Crackers in the chocolate mixture and let it coat evenly. Place gently on a lined foil tray. Top with sprinkles and allow to set.
Repeat with all crackers. 
Refrigerate till done.
Gently un mould and serve immediately.

August 27, 2020

Vankaya Nuvvula Masala - a guestpost by Amara | Guestpost Series #25

Amara from Amara Cooking is the guest blogger this month. Soft Spoken and a wonderful human being who is always, always willing to help out, she's a dear blogger friend as well as an Ice Cream expert. Check out her Mocha Caramel Ice Cream, Jackfruit Ice Cream and so many many more varieties on the blog. Amara also features Andhra Cuisine as well as World Cuisine primarily on her blog. I am particularly drawn to her Colourful Veggie Noodle Salad

Blogger friends from the BM Meet would recall the extensive logistical support that Amara rendered to the meet. Thank you Amara for doing this Guest post. Amara has shared her family's recipe for Vankaya Nuvvula Masala - Eggplant in a spicy and tangy sesame sauce. 

For previous versions of guest post series held earlier. check here

Now off to Amara and her recipe in her own words...


At first I started this blog as an online cook book for my nieces who were newly married and calling me daily for recipes but seeing all the feedback from readers and after making so many friends among bloggers, I became very much interested. I started experimenting with different cuisines and baking. Kalyani became a friend thru our blogging marathon family. Love her healthy and delicious recipes and of course her writing. She is such an amazing talented individual. Happy to associate with her.

Vankaya Nuvvula Masala is made with small eggplant/brinjal. Masala made with onion, ginger garlic paste, spices and sesame seed powder. Frying the eggplant before adding them to the masala adds a lot of flavour to the dish.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time : 25 minutes
Serves : 3-4

Ingredients :
  • Chinna Vankaya/ Small eggplant : 1/4 kg
  • Onion : 2 large chopped
  • Green chillies : 2 slit
  • Ginger garlic paste : 2 teaspoons
  • Red chilli powder : 2 teaspoons
  • Garam masala : 1 teaspoon
  • Turmeric : 1/2 teaspoon
  • Oil - 4 -5 TBSP
  • Salt to taste
  • Sesame seeds : 3 tablespoons
  • Gasagasalu/ white poppy seeds : 1 tablespoon

  1. Slit the vankaya, immerse them in salt water for 5 minutes. Then drop them in hot oil and fry them for 5-7 minutes. Take them out of oil and keep aside.
  2. Dry roast sesame seeds and gasagasalu for 2 minutes.
  3. Heat oil in a pan and Sauté onion, green chilies for 3 minutes until they turn golden brown.
  4. Let the onions cool. Take a blender, add onions, sesame seeds, gasagasalu and make a paste.
  5. Heat a pan, add some oil, onion pasta, ginger garlic paste and fry for 1 minute. Add Red Chilli powder, salt, Garam Masala, mix well and fry for 2 minutes.
  6. Add fried vankaya, 1 cup of water and stir. Cook for 7 minutes or until the masala is thickened and oil floats on the top. Turn off the stove and serve with rice or roti.

August 17, 2020

Instant Bread Halwa Recipe | How to make Bread Halwa | Easy Sweets for beginners

It's just under a week to the local Ganpati festival , and am sure you have loads of sweets and savouries planned or prepared. This sweet today is not just for any festival but for those last minute eats for Parties and potlucks. Its surprisingly easy to put together even for amateur cooks (and yes, converts the leftover slices of bread to a decadent dessert). No syrup, no heavy duty cooking. The only thing is you need to watch it carefully as it can burn quickly.

These can be one of those desserts you can rustle up for unexpected guests or to satiate a midnight sweet tooth craving. I generally don't make or post too many sweets, but with our dear and Rasgolla Queen Sujata asking us to relieve some Meethe Pal (Sweet moments), this is an apt choice. Sujata has some amazing rasgulla varieties (I have stopped counting how many!) but if you are a fan of Chilli or Mango or even watermelon rasgulla, just head over to her blog.

Other Quick Halwas you can look up on the blog include:

Prep time - 5 mins, Cook time - 20 mins Makes - 2~3 small servings

What you need:
  • Bread slices ( I used Brown Bread) -  8 slices - cut into cubes
  • Ghee / clarified butter - 2 TBSP (divided use)
  • Cow Milk - 1.5 cups (1 cup = 200 ml)
  • Powdered Sugar - 1/3 cup (adjust to taste)
  • Saffron threads - few
  • Food colour - a tiny pinch (opt.)
  • Elaichi / cardamom powder - 1/8 tsp (opt.)
  • Vanilla extract - 1/4 tsp (I added, but this is totally optional)
  • Sliced almonds / cashews - for garnish - 1 tsp

How to:
  • In a pan, roast the cubed bread slices in half of the ghee till aromatic. 
  • To the same pan, add 3/4 of the milk and mix it well. 
  • Let the bread get mushy and soft in the milk. Now cook it gently on a low flame till it comes together. 
  • Now add the rest of the milk and sugar and mix it well, scraping down the sides of the pan,
  • Add the saffron and. the food colour (if using). Let it come to a halwa consistency
  • Add the rest of the ghee now slowly.
  • When the halwa starts to leave the sides of the pan, add the cardamom powder and extract. 
  • Top with slivered almonds and serve the halwa warm. 

August 10, 2020

Sugarfree Apple Cinnamon Milkshake , and a very special post :-) | Kids Recipes | Zero Cook

Today is a quick Sugar free Apple Cinnamon Milkshake and its special for many reasons : my little one has completely made this by herself from chopping to pureeing to photographing, except the shots where she wanted her hands to be seen but not her face (well, I didn’t want to show the face on social media - that was entirely my call). 

Isn’t it fabulous when little munchkins help you out? And although I don’t generally add milk products with fruits, we can always, always make an exception, for occasions like these. As the apples were super sweet, and the cinnamon aids in getting it to taste sweeter too, we didn't add any extra sugar except ….. (check out the recipe below!) .Fruit in (or as) dessert. While we generally consume fruits as whole, there are a few dishes with fruits and bake-worthy veggies which go into delicious dishes like:

Smoothies and chilled desserts like : Mango Mastani , Sugarfree Muskmelon-Cucumber Cooler, Amrud ka Panha (Guava Cooler)

Fruit based Salads like :Melon ball Salad , Citrus Burst Salad, Pear Pomogranate Salad

muffins:  like the Sugarfree Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Muffins with Oats Streusel ,

bakes : (Wholewheat Pumpkin Coconut Chocochip bread) , Eggless Sugafree Raga Banana Bundt Bread , Eggless Mango Cardamom Cake

everything else as a mild dessert: think Almost Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Cake OR a Keto Friendly Apple Crumble made with almond flour with no added Sugar OR Wholewheat Apple Cinnamon Pecan Scones (yummmmm!) 

So, Archana who gave us Fruity Desserts as a theme today, this is a sweetish (no added sugar) dessert from my kitchen today. Archana’s Peach and Apple cobbler is a real treat for those wanting to indulge in an elegant, sophisticated dessert, but for now my little one says thanks to Archana aunty for she could ‘pose’ for the pics and make the delicious milkshake today. 


Prep time - 5-7 mins , No cook, Serves - 2 kids

What you need:

  • Chilled Apples -  2 medium (Red Delicious variety works best)
  • Chilled milk - 3/4 cup
  • Ice Cubes - as desired
  • Cinnamon powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Honey - 1 TBSP (as required) or add sugar if required

How to:

  1. Wash and cube the apples (with the peel on). You may peel them if you like, but we prefer it with the peel on
  2. In a blender, add apple, cinnamon powder, chilled milk and puree
  3. Add ice and puree it once more till frothy.
  4. Add honey and mix
  5. Serve immediately

August 6, 2020

Little Millet Onion Uttapam Recipe | Samai Vengaya Oothappam | Vegan and GF Breakfast

Millets are a great replacement to rice especially for diabetics / weight watchers. In Indian Cuisine, Millets can easily replace rice for IdliDosa , Pongal  . Today's dish is a play on the popular Onion Uttapam with a twist with millets. You could use the Millet Idli recipe to make the Uttapam, but I chose to make the Uttapam batter from scratch. If you are just venturing into millets, do check out various ways to use millets from One Pot Meals  to DosaIdli  Upma Pongal to Millet Cakes

Onions and garlic belong to the family Allium which are basically sulphur compounds, which helps in treating cardio vascular ailments, nasal congestions (best done with steamed onions), lowering blood levels of cholesterol and triglycerides and lowering blood pressure. 

This month on the A-Z recipe Challenge, we have alphabet O where we need to make a dish featuring a star ingredient which begins with O in its english name . Onions, olives, oysters are few ingredients that came to mind, of which I chose onions. 

I did make onion rings, but it was all gone before I could capture a few decent pics (and I am not surprised at all :-)) . 

Uttapam / Utthappam / Oothappam is a South Indian Pancake made slightly thicker than Dosa on a skillet topped with veggies / sauces / chutneys / Podis. As mentioned, one can use Idli / Dosa batter to make Uttapam, but let's make the batter from scratch. 

Other Uttapam recipes on the blog include:

Andhra style Erra Karam Dosa

Let's get to the recipe now.

Prep time - 10 mins, Soaking + grinding time - 6 hours, 
Fermentation - overnight / 8-10 hours.
Makes - 15~20 Uttapams

You would need:
  • Little Millet / Samai / Samo  - 3 cups (1 cup = 120 ml)
  • Urad Dal (Split / Whole) - 1 cup
  • Methi / Fenugreek seeds - 1 tsp 
  • Salt - to taste
  • Oil - to fry (approx. 1/4 - 1/2 tsp per Uttapam)
Chopped Onions - 1 cup
Chopped  coriander - 2 TBSP
Chopped curry leaves - 1 tsp
Crushed black pepper - 1/2 tsp 
Minced ginger & green chillies - to taste
Idli Podi - 1/2 tsp per dosa (optional).

How to:

Day 1:

Wash and soak the millet + methi and Urad in minimal water separately for 4-6 hours. 
Grind the Urad dal and methi first to a smooth fluffy batter. Grind the millet to a slightly coarse texture. 
In a bowl, mix both the batters and add salt and fluff it up well. Close and ferment the batter for 8-10 hours or overnight. 


To make the topping:
Heat 1 TBSP oil, add the ginger, green chillies, curry leaves and minced onions and caramelise it well. Add black pepper and mix well. Add the chopped cilantro and mix well. Keep ready.

Once the batter has fermented well, mix well with a deep ladle. Heat the skillet to medium-hot. Pour 1-2 ladles of the batter to a thick dosa (uttapam consistency) and drizzle the oil around, while topping the dosa with the minced onion mixture and some idli molagapudi (opt,). Let it get golden brown on one side

Flip to the other side if required. Or serve the Millet Onion Uttapam immediately with more Idli Molagapodi / Chutney of any sort.  

August 3, 2020

15-min Matki Chi Usal Recipe | मटकीची उसळ| Moth Beans Gravy | Vegan and Gluten Free Recipes

Matki chi usal is a delicious gravy from Maharashtra. It’s a semi solid kind of gravy made with moth beans (a.k.a matki in local lingo), although Usal is also had in the dry sautè form. Having been in Mumbai for considerably long now, we have started adapting these local cuisines as part of the daily menu plan and these sprouted curry is part of a fortnightly meal rotation. 

The kids love this with hot chapatis for dinner. It also makes an excellent source of fibre (due to its sprouting, although sprouting is optional) and protein as a legume. 


Other Maharashtrian dishes on the blog are 

Priya Vijay who blogs at SweetSpicyTasty gave us #Maharashtrian cuisine as a theme. Her Farali Chivda is something I would love to try out soon. 

Vegan GF and filling - that’s a good dish to have for your meal, isn’t it ? Let’s get cracking. 

Soak time - 8 hrs of soaking time + Sprouting (optional). 
Prep time - 10 mins
Cook time - 15 mins
Serves - 4
Cuisine : Maharashrian (indian). 
Course : Side dish / snack; 
spice level - medium 

What you need:
Moth beans / Matki (you can also make this with cow pea / alasandhe OR dried vatana / dried peas) - 150 grams
Oil - 1 TBSP
Tempering : Curry leaves, Mustard seeds 1/2 tsp, Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
turmeric -1/4 tsp
Potato - 2 medium (or 1 large)
Onion - 1 large (minced)
Ripe Tomato - 1 large

Spice powders:
Goda Masala - 1/2 tsp
Garam masala - 1/2 tsp
Red Chilli Pwdr - 1/2 tsp
Dhania powder / Dry Coriander powder - 1 TBSP
Kashmiri Red chilli pwdr - 1 tsp
Amchur / dry mango powder - 1/2 tsp
Sugar - 1/2 tsp (opt. But recommended) 

Garnish - Lemon juice 1 TSP + chopped coriander - 1 TBSP

How to:
  1. Soak the moth beans overnight (or till they double). Drain (at this stage, you can sprout them or use as is).
  2. In a pressure pan, heat oil. Splutter the tempering ingredients. Add turmeric, minced onion .Add salt and sauté well till onions turn golden brown. Now add soaked matki (moth beans), cubed potato  tomato and the spice powders. 
  3. Sauté well for 3-4 mins till the oil slightly separates. Add 1-1.5 cups of water and pressure cook for 4-5 whistles.
  4. Let the pressure come down on its own. Mash up the potatoes a bit to give the gravy more volume and body. 
  5. Add 2-3 TBSP water if you need to adjust the consistency to a gravy like texture.
  6. Let it simmer for 1-2 mins , at this stage adjust salt and spices. 
  7. Finish with lemon juice  and chopped cilantro. 
  8. Serve hot with Chapatis or Pav (bread rolls)

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