My 19 year old a converted health nut, there is god after all!!!! The stir fry that he ate and loved

I think it is a similar story in many households, teenagers and their appalling food habits.From a young age both our kids have been exposed to varied cuisines so their taste buds are quite evolved and they are able to pick and notice the absence or presence of finer nuances and subtleties in food .

At home of course they have lots of greens and whole grains as I try to sneak in lot of good stuff in the popular foods like pastas, stir fries etc. Needless to say they love to eat out in restaurants, but my older son more so it is almost as if he is enamored with outside food.

He is home from the University and can not stop teasing me about the extra pounds that I need to lose. It was one of those non stop teasing sessions that I turned around and pointed to him about the layer of fat that he had accumulated on his abdomen in spite of his regular workouts. Voila that did it, it was one of those rare moments in a parent’s life  when you have really gotten through to your teenage child.

From that point on it has been a mission for him to lose that unwanted layer of fat. I must say I admire him for his dedication towards accomplishing that goal and that has been nothing short of exemplary.

He is now eating only quinoa, brown rice, spelt pasta, black beans etc.no more junk food for him and NO CHEATING WOW!!! Wonders never cease. Needless to say the results are evident.

This is a very simple stir fry that I put together for him ( with the zucchini and kale from my garden) and he happily had it with brown rice and plain black beans.

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INGREDIENTS

1 yellow zucchini squash sliced

1 red pepper sliced

1 cup mix of tender leafy greens ( baby spinach, kale, chard etc)

2 cloves of garlic sliced

1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

1 tbsp. olive oil or ghee

slice of a lemon

salt to taste

METHOD

In a cast iron pan or skillet heat the oil and add all the vegetables .Stir for few minutes and add cayenne pepper (to speed up the metabolism).

Add salt and lemon juice (aids in digestion) just before serving.

Enjoy!!!!

Greens Galore Black Bean Soup (with radish greens and beet greens)

A super delicious super healthy summer fresh soup rich  in antioxidants, iron and protein.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup boiled black beans
  • 1/2 cup radish greens with stems finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup beet greens with stems finely chopped
  • 1 big leaf of ruby chard finely chopped
  • 3/4  cup sorrel leaves finely chopped ( optional)
  • 1 bunch green onions finely chopped ( white bulb and the leafy tails )
  • 2 medium sized green house tomatoes pureed ( use more  if you do not find sorrel leaves)
  • 2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • 1 jalepeno finely chopped or 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp. ghee and 1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
  • salt to taste
  • 2 cups of water

Method

  1. Heat the ghee and saute’ all the greens (except sorrel) ,garlic ,jalepeno and onions .
  2. After 4-5 minutes or maybe little longer making sure all the crunchy stems are cooked, add the tomato puree, beans and sorrel leaves.
  3. Let it come to a boil , now add 11/2 cup of water,  salt and let the soup come to a boil and simmer for another 15 – 20 minutes.
  4. Drizzle soup with olive oil and serve with crusty bread.

Enjoy !!!!

P.S. You could make the soup thicker or more watery according to your preference. My son did not want a thick soup that is why this soup is more liquidy.

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Superhealthy Simply Delicious Kale and Roasted Sweet Potato Salad

I love Kale, I have loved kale from before its celebrity status as a super food. Since it grows in abundance in my backyard through the summer well into winter, my family gets their frequent dose of this delicious vegetable in soups,curries, vegetables and breads.This is the first time I have made a salad with it and my family loved it, you tell me how you liked it.

A Beta – carotene and antioxidant rich simple salad combining 2 superfoods kale and sweet potato.The taste of the vegetables is enhanced with simple lemon juice and oil dressing. Sweet potatoes are nutritional powerhouse of nutrients like vitamin B6, manganese , vitamin c, magnesium and also very high in fiber. Kale is another super food having high antioxidant ratio and anti inflammatory properties. Both vegetables combined not only facilitate heart health but may prevent many degenerative diseases.

Ingredients

  • 3-4 cups washed and chopped kale leaves ( 2” pieces )
  • 1 big sweet potato peeled and sliced into approx. 1/2 ” thick slices
  • 1 red onion peeled and sliced
  • 1 tbsp. mixed sunflower seeds and dry cranberries or sliced almonds
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • herbal salt to taste
  • pinch cayenne pepper

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Method

  1. Toss sweet potatoes with 1 tbsp. of oil and spread on a baking tray.
  2. Roast the sweet potatoes on broil setting for 20 – 25 minutes turning occasionally so all the sides get well roasted.
  3. Steam the kale in a steamer for 10 -12 minutes so it is glistening dark green and tender.
  4. Marinate the sliced onions in juice of half a lemon for 20 -30 minute (it will change color and lose its pungent taste).
  5. Line a tray with steamed kale leaves , top it up with roasted sweet potatoes and marinated onions.
  6. Drizzle olive oil over the vegetables and squeeze the lemon over the same.
  7. Sprinkle the salt and cayenne pepper according to taste.
  8. Garnish with the nuts and seeds and serve.

P.S. Do not premix the lemon juice, oil and salt as the dressing, drizzling and sprinkling the ingredients separately brings out the flavours very naturally. After asssembling the salad I did not even toss it and it tasted great.

Enjoy !!!!

Delicious Herbilicious Quinoa Tortilla / Paratha EASY BREEZY GLUTEN FREE

I bring to you today delicious finger licking old family recipe of a herbal chapati / paratha / herbal tortilla traditionally made with sorghum flour and tons of ( maybe that is a little exaggeration!! but lots nonetheless!!) ghee. Even sorghum is gluten free but it is a much drier grain and more difficult to work with than quinoa flour and you have also to use lot of oil or ghee for it to be soft .Well I will bring you the original recipe too but  I am quite excited about making the same with quinoa flour .The result is truely herbilicious.

I see lot of interest for the gluten free recipes but not as many comments as to if you have tried it ,how is the result ,do you find the measurements appropriate, results as expected or not, any difficulties or challenges? I am open to suggestions and candid comments .Because your input not only paves the way for better future recipes but also helps other people wanting to try out the same.

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Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cup quinoa flour
  • 100ml cup and a couple more tablespoons  of water
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped mint and cilantro
  • 1 small onion finely chopped
  • 1 green chilli or jalepeno finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 1 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder or cayenne pepper
  • salt to taste
  • 3-4 tbsp.oil or ghee
  • Little dry quinoa flour to roll the chapati

Tools

  • Rolling pin
  • Marble or wooden board
  • Cast iron or non stick skillet

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Method

  1. Mix the flour with all the ingredients except oil.
  2. Now slowly add the water and knead the dough.You may add a tbsp. oil so that the chapati/ paratha are soft.
  3. Soon the dough starts to take shape and come together, as the quinoa flour is sticky compared to wheat flour, lot of dough will be sticking to your hands.
  4. At this stage use a little oil to grease your palm and knead the dough, this will help some dough to come off your palm. For the remaining dough sticking on to your palm use a butter knife to scrape it.
  5. Now use a little more oil and the knead the dough a little more and form it into a smooth glistening ball .Do not leave the dough for more than 10-15 minutes as the moisture from onions and herbs makes it wet and sticky. (if that happens use some dry flour to soak up the extra moisture)
  6. Divide this dough into 6 – 8 balls of equal size. Meanwhile heat a seasoned cast iron griddle or nonstick skillet.
  7. Roll the ball between both your palms and make a smooth ball ( it would not be smooth like quinoa chapati because it has so many herbs and onions)
  8. Roll the ball in dry flour and with a rolling pin carefully roll it out an inch or two and carefully peel it off the board and roll it in the dry flour again. Use a spatula to peel it off the board as it will break and crack easier than plain quinoa chapati but still much easier than other gluten free flours like millet, corn ,sorghum etc.
  9. Carefully continue to roll and repeat the above step till you have a circle of 4-5 inch in diameter ( with practice you can make a bigger circle without it breaking apart ) of even thickness.
  10. Carefully peel it off the board and place it on the heated skillet on medium heat.
  11. This herbal tortilla / paratha will be thicker than the chapati and WILL take few minutes longer to cook because of its thickness but believe me the result justifies the time spent!!!
  12. Use a paper towel or a clean dish towel to press the thicker edges so that they are well cooked.
  13. Turn it few times at regular intervals, apply little ghee and press the edges so that there are no uncooked areas left, also ensuring that it does not become crisp and stays soft. You will see nice brown spots now and rest of the paratha with a golden hue.
  14. Do not let these instructions overwhelm you, with practice you wil get finger licking results!!! Patience has never had a sweeter reward or should I say SAVOURY reward!!!!
  15. Brush the tortilla with little ghee on both sides wrap it in clean cheese cloth and keep in a covered glass dish or steel container so that they stay soft.
  16. Serve with plain yoghurt spiced with black pepper and ground roasted cumin powder and ENJOY!!!!