Salmon, Corn, Veggies

Cherie expressed a desire to eat salmon a few days ago. The challenge is usually using up all the ingredients that I’m experimenting with, leftover vegetables and putting all of them together into a single platter.

There were a couple of sad carrots in the fridge accompanied by an equally glum green bell pepper. I had made soaked and boiled a batch of chickpeas a couple of days ago and that needed to be used. There was a batch of toor dal that I had soaked for a few days to see when they would be tender enough to quickly cook in an open pan with a little water. Indu had picked up some corn on the cob, a pomegranate and some spinach a few minutes ago. Here’s what happened.


  • Salmon, steaks; salted, drained and rinsed
  • Corn on the cob, boiled with a pinch of sugar
  • Carrots, sliced fine.
  • Green bell peppers, sliced fine
  • Chickpeas, boiled and drained
  • Tahini (sesame seed paste in oil)
  • Garlic, raw, a few pods; sliced
  • Toor dal; boiled and drained
  • Pomegranate seeds
  • Honey
  • Eggs, boiled
  • Spinach; blanched, drained and squeezed
  • Black peppercorns; freshly cracked
  • Olive oil
  • Sesame oil


  • Blend boiled chickpeas with a couple of pods of garlic, some tahini and some salt. That’s your hummus. Start with two pods of garlic and a tablespoon of tahini for about 150 gm of boiled chickpeas and adjust per your taste. Blend finely or coarsely; your call. Set aside.
  • Mix the boiled toor dal with pomegranate seeds, salt and a little olive oil. Set aside.
  • Toss the carrots and bell peppers in a hot pan with a little oil, and then add a bit of honey, some salt and take off the flame. Mix well. Set aside.
  • Mix the blanched spinach with sliced fresh garlic, salt and sesame oil. Set aside.
  • Slice the boiled eggs.
  • Sprinkle salmon with a little salt, fry on that side in a little oil for about 2 minutes on a medium flame. Sprinkle freshly cracked black pepper on the side facing you and then flip it over and fry for another couple of minutes or so, depending on the thickness of your steaks.
  • Plate it all. Serve.


  • When the layers of salmon are perfectly visible and separable, it’s well cooked. When they’re fused together, it’s overcooked.
  • Use extra virgin olive oil if possible.
  • Free range eggs are good. Don’t over boil the eggs as I’ve done. Yolks ought to be a bit moist.
  • Feel free to change the dal used. Don’t nuke it though, while cooking. We don’t have to pressure cook everything to death.
  • I used wild honey.
  • If you’ve prepped beforehand, don’t pre-mix the dal and spinach mixtures. Rinse the dal, spinach and corn in in hot water to reheat them. Re-toss the carrots and pepper if you wish at the last moment. Don’t fry the salmon prior.

Vegetable and Dahi Stew

As a family, we like our food and we both love and hate our carbs. So we cooperate with any attempt to reduce their presence in our lives. Elimination, in case you’re wondering, is both impractical and not really healthy unless you know what you’re doing.

This stew is a mixture of a number of vegetables and one grain – bajra. I soaked the stuff for 3 whole days, trying to see if it would grow in size and when it would soft enough to eat by itself. The water was changed every 12 hours or so and it lay on the kitchen platform, it being cool enough these days to do so. It never grew in size, though it did get soft enough to eat by itself, though with a slight bite.


  • Lauki, 1 small-medium, diced
  • Radish, 2 medium, diced (root and leaves)
  • Carrots, 1 small, diced
  • Spinach, one bundle, washed, trimmed and chopped
  • Mushrooms, 1 packet, diced
  • Parval, 2 pieces, trimmed, cleaned and sliced (no seeds)
  • Bell peppers, 1, sliced
  • Bajra, 6 tbsp, pre-soaked
  • Dhaniya powder, 1 tbsp
  • Garam masala, 1.5 tbsp
  • Chilli Garlic chutney, 1 heaped tsp
  • Fresh ginger, 1 – 2 inches, finely diced
  • Dahi (yogurt), 250ml
  • Haldi powder, 1.5 tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp oil


  1. Heat oil. Saute bajra for a few minutes on medium heat.
  2. Add all spices. It’s okay if there isn’t enough oil in there to drown them. Saute/stir for a minute on low heat.
  3. Add all vegetables, except spinach.
  4. Add chutney, ginger and dahi.
  5. Mix. Lower heat. Cover and cook until vegetables are tender or as you like them. Took me about 20 minutes.
  6. Add spinach, mix, wait for a minute for it to wilt.
  7. Serve.


  1. Serve as is, or with rice, roti etc. We ate it in bowls as a chunky soup, without any accompaniments.
  2. Pre-cook the bajra in a pressure cooker if you don’t want to pre-soak for 3 days.
  3. A bit of ghee on top would taste quite nice.
  4. Keeping the bajra a little hard helps reduce post meal fridge visits because the mouth has yet chewed enough.
  5. Add any more or less vegetables you like.
Doesn’t look that great, but definitely tasted quite nice.

Spicy Hash Browns

Hashed brown potatoes were a popular breakfast dish in New York City in the 1890’s and were served in the finest hotels. And how about serving them from your kitchen?


  • Potatoes, grated, 3.
  • Egg, 1 nos, beaten.
  • All-purpose flour, 4 tbsp.
  • Cheese, grated, 4 tbsp.
  • Coriander, chopped, 1 tbsp.
  • Red chili powder, ½ tsp.
  • Black pepper, ¼ tsp.
  • Onion, chopped, 1 whole.
  • Garlic, grated, 1tsp.
  • Salt, to taste.


  1. Rinse the grated potatoes in ice cold water, then strain and squeeze out all the excess water. Then transfer to a bowl.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well with the help of a spoon.
  3. Take a non-stick pan, put one ladle full of the mixture on it. Spread and shape it as desired. Cook well from both sides, covering if necessary and reducing the heat, depending on the thickness.
  4. Your spicy hash browns are ready to be relished.


  • You can use cheese of your own choice. I have used mozzarella but you can use Parmesan as well.


Gooey Chicken Kathi Roll Filling

We wanted to eat a gooey, rich stuffed chicken roll for dinner, and this is the filling we used.


  • Chicken breast, 2 pieces, diced
  • Mayonnaise, 3 tbsp
  • Garlic powder, 2 tsp
  • Onion powder, 1 tbsp
  • Cornflour, 1 tbsp
  • Garam masala, 1 tsp [optional]
  • Chilli powder, 1/2 tsp [optional]
  • Freshly ground black pepper, 1 tsp [optional]
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil for deep frying


  1. Mix all the powders and salt.
  2. Moisten chicken and combine it with the powder mixture.
  3. Shake the pieces of chicken in a sieve to dust off excess powders
  4. Deep fry till golden brown
  5. Remove from oil, let cool and mix with mayonnaise
  6. Use as filling in rolls


  • To make the rolls, I used a teaspoon of chilli garlic chutney, a tablespoon of stirred cream and this filling, all rolled into a large paratha.
  • I used homemade honey mustard mayonnaise. You can use whatever you’d like or is available.
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Apple Cinnamon Cake

We all know that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, so why not have it in a special way .


  • Apples pureed, 1 cup
  • All-purpose flour, 1 cup
  • Wheat flour, 1 cup
  • Baking soda, 1/2 tsp
  • Baking powder, 2 tsp
  • Cinnamon powder, 1/2 tsp
  • Powdered sugar, 1 cup
  • Melted butter, 150 gm 
  • Oil, 1 tbsp.


  1. Sieve flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking soda and baking powder. Keep it aside.
  2. In a separate bowl whisk together the butter, milk, and apple.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet batter.
  4. Fold in well .
  5. Add the oil .
  6. Transfer the prepared batter to the baking tin.   
  7. Bake in a preheated oven for 25 minutes at 1800 Celsius.


  • All the ingredients should be at room temperature.
  • The baking tin should be big enough to accommodate the batter until half.
  • Puree the apples as soon as you cut them or else they will turn black.
  • When you are mixing the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, make sure to use a wooden spatula and fold it in the same direction to avoid any lumps.
  • Grease and line the baking tin with a parchment sheet before transferring the batter.

3 Minute Hunger Reducing Soup

This is a quick way to make a soup that’s healthier than the usual, and keeps away hunger plus is versatile enough to go with almost any vegetables available in the home . This is great for use when breaking an intermittent fast as well as a good snack idea when fasting.

While it literally takes 3 minutes to prepare, the time does depend on two ingredients that I try and keep in my fridge all the time – the chutney mentioned below and any kind of boiled lentils or legumes.

This soup is quickly made and the spice brings satisfaction as well as keeps off hunger.


  • Chilli Garlic Chutney (Click for recipe)
  • Butter / Olive Oil / other fat
  • Tulsi (Holy Basil), Basil leaves, chopped
  • Salt to taste
  • Chickpeas / safed chana, boiled with a little salt


  1. Heat a little fat in pan
  2. Add chutney as per taste
  3. Add a mug of water
  4. Add a mug of chickpeas
  5. Bring to boil
  6. Season
  7. Serve


  • Add fat, butter or olive oil as per your taste. If you choose to add none, start with water in a pan and then continue to step 2, omitting step 3.
  • Add basil and/or tulsi leaves as per your taste or availability. You can also try hara dhania / coriander leaves if both aren’t available. The leaves need to have some flavour though in my opinion, so spinach, for example, may not work well on its own.
  • Add chilli chutney per your tolerance / taste. This chutney can get pretty hot. To keep away hunger, ensure you add a little more chilli heat than you’re comfortable with.
  • You can add any other vegetables you want, such as carrots or peas among others.
  • Add a boiled egg or a omelette to it for extra nutrients and protein.
  • You can also have it as a soup without adding any chickpeas or other ingredients.
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Dhokla Bruschetta

When the hubby is travelling on a Sunday, sonny boy has a mixed bag of sadness and the grumps together. How about serving him a dish that’s a combination of Gujarati and Italian cuisine? You heard that right! Here, I present Dhokla Bruschetta.


  1. Besan / chickpea flour, 2 cups, sifted using a sieve
  2. Citric acid, 1 tsp
  3. Water, 1.5 cups, to be used in three batches
  4. Ginger and green chilli paste, 1 tsp
  5. Asafoetida / heeng, 2 pinches
  6. Turmeric powder / haldi, 1/2 teaspoon
  7. Baking soda, 1 tsp
  8. Powdered sugar, 4 tbsp
  9. Oil, 2 tbsp
  10. Salt, to taste


  1. To the sifted besan add the citric acid, ginger green chili paste, heeng, haldi, salt and the powdered sugar
  2. Now add half cup of water to the besan mixture and whisk well making sure that there are no lumps remaining
  3. Add another half cup of water and once again whisk until the texture is smooth
  4. Finally, add another half cup of water and whisk vigorously in one direction for at least  3-4 minutes until the batter is light, pale and fluffy
  5. Add oil to the batter and mix well and then keep it aside for 10 minutes
  6. In the meanwhile, heat water in the pan in which you will place the dish containing the dhokla batter, and grease that dish too.
  7. Add baking soda to the batter; mix well
  8. Transfer the batter to the tin/dis, place it in the pan with boiling water, cover and steam for 20-25 minutes.
  9. Check using a toothpick; if a toothpick inserted comes out clean, your dhokla is ready.

Ingredients for the topping:

  1. Chopped bell peppers, all 3 colours, ½ cup
  2. Onion, ¼ cup, chopped
  3. Tomatoes, ¼ cup, chopped
  4. Olive oil, ½ tsp, chopped
  5. Garlic, 3 -4 pods, chopped
  6. Salt, to taste
  7. Mixed herbs, ½ tsp
  8. Oregano, ½ tsp


  1. In a pan add olive oil
  2. Immediately add the garlic, then add the onions, bell peppers and tomatoes, stirring for a minute before adding each ingredient
  3. Add all the seasonings and cook on high flame for a minute

Final Assembly:

  1. Slice the dhoklas and spread the toppings on them.
  2. Bake at 1600 Celsius for 8-10 minutes in a pre-heated oven using top heating rods only
  3. Serve hot.


  • You’ll need a dish in which to steam the dhokla and a pan big enough to hold that dish and some water for the steam. Choose both carefully.
  • Optionally, mozzarella or other cheese can be added as a topping too.

Fudgiest Brownies Ever

I have a foodie in my house who is crazy about chocolates, and when it comes to chocolates, what better than fudgy chewy brownies to satiate the cravings of my chocolate dragon? Some people like their brownies to be cakey, but my choice are always the fudgy and chewy ones. So here is a recipe for you all for the fudgiest brownies ever.


  • Vegetable oil, 5 tbsp
  • Butter, 3 tbsp
  • Chopped dark chocolate, 1/2 cup
  • Sugar, 1 cup
  • Eggs, 2 whole.
  • Vanilla essence, 1 tsp
  • Flour, 3/4th cup, sifted using a sieve
  • Cocoa powder, 1/4th cup
  • Chocolate chips, 1/4th cup


  1. Heat oil, add butter and cook on low flame till the butter melts and mixes well with the oil.
  2. Remove the pan from the flame and add the chopped dark chocolate.
  3. Mix well till the chocolate is melted. Allow this to cool completely.
  4. Add sugar and mix well.
  5. Add the eggs one by one and then the vanilla essence.
  6. Now add the flour and the cocoa powder to the batter.
  7. Mix well and add the chocolate chips.
  8. Transfer the batter in a greased and lined 9 x 9 baking tin.
  9. Bake in a preheated oven at 190 degrees Celsius for 25 minutes.
  10. Allow cooling before you bite in; the centre may be much hotter than the outside.


  1. All the ingredients should be at room temperature.
  2. If you want to skip the eggs, add 1/2 cup curd/yogurt.

Veggies, Veggies, Veggies

Breaking an intermittent fast, or the last meal before beginning one can make quite a difference to how we feel and the success of the oncoming fast. Plus, due to the low quantity of food and frequency of meals, we need a boost of nutrition if we are to avoid excess nutritional supplements.

This recipe was created for The Right Side of Life, a Safal community on Facebook. If you’re interested in eating healthier and involving food in different aspects of wellness, this is a group for you. We’re planning lots of activities and content for this group that I’m sure you’ll love!

This recipe is of a style I favour for this purpose – lots of flavour, lots of vegetables, plenty of fibre, low carb, lots of different nutrients and so on. Give it your own twist by adding other vegetables such as differently coloured bell peppers for instance, which would taste and look great in this soup. Also, this isn’t very spicy, so you might like to add some of that too per your own preferences.

I’ll just list the ingredients, of which there are many, and ask you to please watch the video for the method. It’s just about putting them all into a pot one after another, simmering for 5 minutes and then a few steps to finish. The ingredients are listed in order of use.


  • Oil
  • Garlic, sliced
  • Spring onions (whites), sliced
  • Onions, sliced
  • Spring onions (greens), chopped, 3/4 of whatever you have.
  • Mushroom stalks, finely chopped
  • Mushrooms, sliced
  • Light soy sauce
  • Vinegar
  • Honey
  • Carrots, sliced
  • Paneer, diced
  • Singhada, coarsely chopped
  • Chinese cooking wine (optional)
  • Green chilli sauce
  • Add-It Vegetable Gravy Seasoning
  • Dried red chilli
  • Mustard greens
  • Green peas
  • Spring onions (greens), remaining amount
  • Coriander leaves, chopped
  • Dark soy sauce
  • Oranges

Yeah, that’s a lot. Don’t forget the dark soy sauce, or the soup looks really dull and drab.


Watch the video below please. :)


  • Go slow with the vinegar, they can be mild to sharp depending on the brand.
  • A dash of Chinese sesame oil over each bowl will lend a lovely aroma.
  • Add green chillies for spice if you wish
  • Add more vegetables if you want
  • Replace mustard greens with spinach or other greens if you want.
  • Using a stock cube might be an interesting touch.