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HEALTHY COOKING

CURRY, Dinner, healthy, HEALTHY COOKING, Indian, Lentils, Lunch, Non Vegetarian, Uncategorized, VEGETARIAN

Healthy Creamy Kale-Lentil Daal

Cremy Healthy Kale Lentil Daal -Indian style, Vegan #indiandaal #vegetarian

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! Wishing you all a very wonderful 2017!!

I woke up on NYE, reflecting on how it was a wonderful 2016.

When I say wonderful, it was, with some complexity.  It had its ups and downs.  And when I say wonderful, I meant that I chose to focus on the wonderful things.  I tried to focus on the positive things.  I learnt how to heal myself and look at what I had in front of me.  I learnt that there’s no right way of life, no right way of living, or a perfect life.  Perfection is a perception.  It’s what we make of it. Continue Reading

Appetizer, chickpea, Entertaining, healthy, HEALTHY COOKING, Pasta, VEGETARIAN, Walnut

Butter Bean Walnut Hummus and Broccoli-Spinach Butter Bean Pasta

Butter Bean Walnut Hummus and Broccoli-Spinach Butter Bean Pasta |foodfashionparty|

Life is Perfectly Imperfect.
 
The last three weeks have been blurry, chaotic, rushed, and imperfect in a way.  My car is messy, it looks like my garage has been hit by a mini torpedo, and my carpet, in a few places, looks muddy.  While folding laundry, I noticed my teen’s pants have rips…. I had to be careful that my little human boy has not been bitten in his private area ;).  I am more jittery, forgetful and haven’t got the time to spend a cozy huggy time with my human boys.
 
WE GOT A PUPPY.  Waffles.  He is a doll, a sweet sweet baby who turns rowdy for just a few minutes a day.
 
Yes, my laundry doesn’t get done fast enough.  My to-do list has been growing a little bit too fast, nothing gets ticked off.  As I drive off to a meeting, I have puppy hair on my pants.  My hair smells like Waffles, our home suddenly smells like a puppy.
 
I haven’t had anyone cling to my feet in 10 yrs.  All I do now is send pictures of Waffles shake hands, behave and just his cutest little pointy ears to everyone who shows the merest interest.  I’m like this crazy mamma.
 
As crazy as life sounds and looks right now, isn’t it what it is all about?!  Life is a learning process.  Sometimes, small simple struggles are exactly what we need in our life.  I had a period when everything was calm, and life was always quiet and peaceful.  Now, I appreciate the peace and silence, even if it’s for an hour a day.  When we have it all, we don’t miss it.  Why do we only miss something when it’s taken away?
 
I like my chaos.  I love my Waffles, the energy and endless kisses and love he gives us.  I like that my boys feel responsible for someone.  I feel COMPLETE.
 
Loving life in all it’s imperfections is the best.  Don’t you agree?
 
 This pasta, in a way, is what I call my accidental recipe gone good.  A bit of this, a touch of that, and some cheese, and it’s perfect in all it’s hotchpotch mess.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Butter Bean Walnut Hummus and Broccoli-Spinach Butter Bean Pasta
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer Lunch
Cuisine: American, Middle Eastern
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
For the Hummus
  • 2 16 oz cans butter beans rinsed and drained or 1 cup dried beans soaked in water overnight
  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • ¼ cup walnuts
  • 1 tsp red chili flakes
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • ½ lemon zest
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro(optional) or parsley
  • 1 tsp toasted and crushed cumin
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp of freshly cracked pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3-4 tbsp water
For the pasta
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 head of broccoli chopped to small 1 inch size
  • 1 cup of chickpeas/garbanzo cooked(use canned or cooked)
  • 1 cup packed spinach finely chopped
  • ½ cup of the hummus
  • ½ cup pasta water
  • 4 cups cooked wheat/semolina fusili pasta
  • Pepper jack cheese to top the pasta with or flavored hard cheese
Instructions
For the Hummus
  1. If you are using dry beans, soak it in water overnight. Cook with 4 cups of water with NO SALT. After about 15 minutes, check if it is cooked. Then add some salt, let it sit in the salted water for few minutes and drain. This way you will ensure that the beans are lightly salted and it does not get tough or rubbery. Cool before making hummus.
  2. If you are using canned, it's very easy, just drain and rinse well before using.
  3. Add everything for the hummus in a food processor except for the water and whip and grind it under a coarse paste is formed. If you want add a few tablespoons of water to make it slighly thinner. The thicker consistency is great for dips with crackers or bread sticks.
For the Pasta.
  1. Cook the pasta for 8-10 minutes in salted water or until al dente. Drain it, keep some pasta water aside.
  2. In a saute pan, add a tbsp of olive oil, let it get hot and add the fennel seeds and let it splutter. Add the chopped broccoli and salt it, saute and cook for a minute. Then add the chickpeas and the spinach and saute until the spinach wilts. Add the hummus and add hot pasta water to water it down and mix well. Add the cooked pasta, mix through and turn off the heat.
  3. Add the cheese and serve immediately.

Butter Bean Walnut Hummus and Broccoli-Spinach Butter Bean Pasta |foodfashionparty|

 

Appetizer, chickpea, Dinner, Entertaining, healthy, HEALTHY COOKING, Indian, International Cuisine, Party Ideas, Spicy, Starter, Vegan, VEGETARIAN

Spicy Baked Cauliflower Fritter(pakoda) TACO with Mango Sauce and Red cabbage Slaw(Vegan)

Spicy Baked Cauliflower Fritter(pakoda) TACO with Spicy Mango Sauce and Red cabbage Slaw(Vegan) |foodfashionparty|

The love of food the four of us shares is quite intense.

We all love to try different things, quite tough critics, and we might enjoy one more than the other.  We enjoy a good hearty Lamb chop meal as much as we enjoy a loaded salad with some dressing.

Trying to balance out the carnivore loving boys with a lighter fare which suits our taste is a challenge I take on happily and love.  I try not to fall into the routine of recipes and when variety is there, it makes it so much more fun.

This was one such thing.

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Dinner, HEALTHY COOKING, Indian, Salad, Side, VEGETARIAN

3 Insanely Delicious-EASY Raita (Yogurt based)

BEET RAITA with mango ginger tempering. 3 incredibly delicious and easy Raita. |foodfashionparty|I don’t know how to grow plants. I can’t grow plants.

We never know what we get into, until we are handed a tiny little bundle with just the face peaking, eyes stuck together with some liquid, flushed pink face, and a blue striped or pink striped cap.  We feel an overwhelming sense of joy, a chilling and warm feeling.  Tears swell up and the first smile you give your tiny baby is filled with so much joy and love (and oxytocin, as my teen adds).  It’s a feeling that has never crept up until then, and will never go away.

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Appetizer, Entertaining, healthy, HEALTHY COOKING, Indian, Lentils, Salad, Salad Bowl, Spicy, Vegan, VEGETARIAN

Lentil-Radish Salad with Chili-Lime Dressing (Guest Post)

Lentil-Radish Salad with Chili-Lime Dressing |foodfashionparty|Guest post by @boxofspice
 
With the rain and winds, the Bay Area is filled with pollen too.  The only way I can communicate now, without messing my vocal chords completely, is to whisper.  For some reason the husky and sexy voice(as someone called it) doesn’t seem to suit me and I’ve had a few people feel bad, laugh and make fun of me all at the same time :). It’s one of the worst sore throats I have ever had, and I refuse to go to the doctor.  Trying to have green tea with honey, fresh turmeric and everything to soothe my poor little throat.  I am so very thankful and grateful to Rakhee from boxofspice to fill my space today with one of her impressive salads.
 
As Rakhee puts it, we’ve known each other for the longest.  I fell in love with her gorgeous photography and this post in particular Chaat Salad, and now we are great friends and I am in love with her personality too.  She’s all ears when I want to and makes me feel like a million bucks (what more can anyone ask).  Her artistic eye for dreamy and moody photography requires a standing ovation and her salads all belong in a magazine.  Without further ado… Here’s Rakhee.  Take it away my dear…..

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Appetizer, healthy, HEALTHY COOKING, Indian, Side, Spicy, Vegan, VEGETARIAN

Taro/Arbi Spicy Stir Fry

Taro/Arbi Spicy Stir Fry. A healthier alternative to potatoes. Tips and tricks for less oil. |foodfashionparty|

She comes home and finds an empty container, which, only a couple of hours ago, had the very best tangy-spicy, oily, fried taro.

A year is a long time to be away when you’ve stayed with someone for 21 years.  A trip to India after I came to US was an in-explainable feeling, and an exciting one.  There were a lot of things I wanted to enjoy, first being the food.  All the things I was overwhelmed to cook or plain didn’t know how to cook were the things I asked mom to make.  Sometimes we just have a mind block, don’t you think?  You believe it’s hard to cook something, just because.  This was one of those things. Continue Reading

Appetizer, Entertaining, healthy, HEALTHY COOKING, Lunch, Lunch Box, VEGETARIAN

Vegetable-Tofu Wrap with Spicy Almond Cream

Vegetable-Tofu Wrap with Spicy Almond Cream @foodfashionparty

Happy February!

The only thing that comes to mind during January is Downton Abbey.

We watched or let’s just say binge watched all 6 seasons under 3 weeks.  I know..I know..it’s crazy.  We did though.  For a month I spoke in an accent new to me, and I felt quite posh.  Now that fancy accent is fading away as fast as the memories of Downton Abbey are.  I enjoyed it so much that I pretty much have withdrawal symtom now.  I’m looking for another period drama. If you have suggestions, please do let me know.

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Appetizer, healthy, HEALTHY COOKING, Indian, Lentils, Lunch, Salad, Salad Bowl, Snacks, Vegan, VEGETARIAN

Garlicky Mung/Moong Bean-Dill-Pomegranate Spicy Warm Salad

Garlicky Mung Beans-Dill-Pomegranate Spicy Warm Salad @foodfashionparty

 

After a couple of years of pretty severe drought in the Bay, the wet weather for the past few weeks is a welcome change.  I definitely am happy to hear the pitter-patter of the rain and rumble of the leaves. The deep brown soil turning brown and the dry brown grass on the mountains turning green are some very pretty sights.

Waking up to dark gray clouds, the sounds of rain, the trembling trees all makes us want to snuggle a bit more.  Turning and struggling to wake up, going down for a hot cup of coffee and to a silent almost ‘pin drop silence’ except for the rain was an ideal start to my perfect day.

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CURRY, Dinner, Fusion, healthy, HEALTHY COOKING, Indian, Soups, Starter, Vegan, VEGETARIAN

Vegetarian Mulligatawny – Spiced Vegetable Pepper Soup

Mulligatawny - Pepper Spiced, Lentil and Vegetable Soup with Fried leeks and Onions. @foodfashionparty

One of the main things that makes me smile about this soup is its name.  The word is derived from Tamil (South Indian language).  Mulliga means pepper, and tawny/tanni means water.  I speak that language, so you can imagine why I find it slightly amusing.

I have had my share of this soup in restaurants, not because I love soups, but only because I was intrigued by the name. Because soups were not part of meals growing up, we were adventurous and just had to start off very daintily with a soup at restaurants.  When a bowl of soup was kept in front of us, I always had this expression: like how could this be pepper water?  Some served it with a mango relish, some were soupier and had tomatoes in it.  Chicken broth was used in many and chunks of chicken were found in some.  I even had mulligatawny soup once which was so bombarded with cream that I wanted to chat with the chef.  Honestly though, I have no clue what the original was and how it came about.

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Appetizer, Entertaining, Entree, healthy, HEALTHY COOKING, Party Ideas, Party TIPS, Salad, Thanksgiving, Uncategorized, Vegan, VEGETARIAN

Endive Boats with Beet-Carrot-Fennel-Pear in Asian Dressing

Endive Boats with Beet-Carrot-Fennel in Asian dressing

I’ve always been picky about my salads.  I will eat a salad only if it is spicy, crunchy, and made with some peanut butter dressing :).  Well, it changed.

I was invited to a clothing boutique opening a few winters ago.  That’s when I fell in love with these endive boats after avoiding it for about 20 minutes.  As we walked in, our coats were taken.  The wine was served and the conversations were on full swing, when a very prim and proper server walked by us bringing these beautiful salad boats.  I excused myself politely to walk across to the left of the room where the cocktails and desserts were.  After a few minutes, the guy comes again with this beautifully arranged platter of these boats, and I picked out a boat just to be nice to the guy.  He smiled because I had been avoiding him for at least 20 minutes.  I stalked him for the next 15; I am sure I would’ve eaten at least 10.

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