Are you confused with the weather and the meal time ideas? While it feels like everything is in transition, one foot in winter and one in spring. The weather blows cold a lot of days, then an unexpected warm day gets our hopes up, well to be dashed again the very next day. We know spring will come, soon in a month’s time. Until then to sail you through the weather, we’ve put together a few quick meal plans with fresh, fast dinners and easy serving ideas.
Here are a few easy and nutritious recipes from Swasti Aggarwal Food Strategist, Foodhall India to make your meal time more interesting!
Beetroot and Carrot Shorba
This is a lovely soup dish that is really warming but it also have a wonderful sweetness that comes from vegetables.
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Difficulty: Easy
- Serves: 4 people
- 2 tbsp Oil
- 1 Arqa bay leaf
- 1 tsp Arqa cumin seeds
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 5 cm piece ginger
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 3 beetroots, peeled and diced
- 2 green chillies
- 750ml water
- Handful of coriander stalks
- Arqa salt to taste
- Heat oil in a pan and add bay leaf, cumin and garlic to gently infuse the flavours.
- Saute for 1 minute then add the ginger and sauté for another minute. Be sure not to burn the ginger.
- Add carrot, beetroot and green chillies and cook for five more minutes.
- Pour in the water and the coriander stalks then let it come up to boil. Reduce to a simmer for 20-30 minutes until the beetroot and carrots are cooked through.
- Puree the mixture and adjust the seasoning. If it’s too thick add a little water and stir it well.
- Strain the puree through a sieve to ensure it is smooth and check the seasoning again.
- Serve immediately with a slice of crusty bread and whipped yoghurt.
- A fresh and healthy Vietnamese appetizer enjoyed with a spicy dipping sauce.
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Difficulty: Easy
- Serves: 4
- 2 tbsp Salt
- 1 bag Rice vermicelli
- Assortment greens; (lettuce, bean sprouts, garlic chive, Thai basil and mint)
- 2 tsp Vegetable oil
- 2 Garlic cloves minced
- 1/3 cup Hoisin sauce
- 1/2 cup Peanut butter
- Garnish – Toasted peanut and sriracha sauce for spiciness
- Wash and process all the vegetables and set aside.
- Cook the rice vermicelli as per package directions, drain excess water, rinse and set aside to cool.
- To make the roll, rehydrate rice paper, one at a time in warm water. On one end of the rice paper, add a bed of noodles and an assortment of greens.
- Start rolling up the filled end, tightly tucking in as you roll up. Tuck in the sides when you are half-way through rolling.
- In a small sauce pan, heat up vegetable oil and add minced garlic to sauté until fragrant. Add hoisin sauce and peanut butter and whisk until smooth. Add a splash of water or vegetable stock and simmer for a thick consistency.
- Add Sriracha for a spicy kick and garnish with toasted peanuts.
Sprouted Moong Flour Pesarattu (or Sprouted lentil pancake)
- Pesarattu is one of the most commonly eaten breakfasts in South India.
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- Difficulty: Easy
- Serves: 4 – 5 people
- 1 cup sprouted Moong Flour
- 2 tbsp rice flour
- 1 tsp ginger, chopped
- 1 tsp dry red chili, chopped
- 1 tsp green chili, chopped
- Few curry leaves
- 1 tsp cumin, coarsely ground
- 1/2 cup onion, chopped
- Combine the Sprouted Moong Flour, rice flour, salt with water to make a smooth batter similar to the consistency of a dosa batter.
- Chop 1 tsp each of ginger, dry red chilli, green chilli & curry leaves. Add coarsely ground cumin to the pesarattu batter & let it rest for 30 mins till flavours infuse.
- Heat a greased dosa tawa, pour the batter with a ladle and spread it to a thin round layer with the base of the ladle.
- Evenly sprinkle chopped onion over the pesarattu, add ghee or butter & cook over slow flame till crisp & golden.
- Serve hot with coconut chutney.