Sprouts dosai, crispy, delicious dosai that is healthy too

Sprouts Dosai | Tastiest breakfast that includes sprouts

I want to share a spectacularly easy and delicious Sprouts Dosai recipe with you but I want to tell you a little story first.  Story I was cycling away at the gym. A mobile phone rang somewhere nearby. The person next to me on another cycle picked up one of his two mobiles. It was one of those large screen LED TV type mobiles and there was a bright flash of light which even I with my poor eyesight could see quite clearly. A woman’s photo flashed on the screen. I turned away because I am decent and well-mannered and I don’t peep into people’s mobiles. He spoke for a couple of minutes which I did not listen to. I happened to turn that way when he hung up, the light caught my eye and I saw “Wife Darling” in big bold letters on his phone. Now I didn’t know which way to look. I looked at others who were very seriously going about their workout uncaring of what I had witnessed. I had to say this to somebody. So I am writing it on my blog. I’ve also seen a few men who stored their wife’s number as “My Wife”. This particular Parthiban and Vadivelu scene comes to mind. Why the “My”? It’s not like you have the numbers of all the wifes in your apartment – “ABlock 19 Wife”, “B34 Wife”, “Carparking fighter’s wife”… I tried to understand the characters who’ll store their wife’s number as “Wife Darling”, “My Wife”, “Wife Chellakutti” and so on. I know we store our mom or dad’s number as mom/amma, dad/appa because that’s how we call them. But “Wife Darling”?! I tried to list down the kinds of people who’ll do that: New to marriage Is the expressive kind of person who’ll write long posts on facebook praising his wife for cooking for him and having his socks sorted. Is the kind of guy who likes to be “mothered” (smothered), the one whose wife calls him 20 times a day, tells him what to wear, what to eat, answers for him and accompanies him everywhere he goes. This is the kind of guy who’ll willingly hand over his phone to the wife who’ll read his whatsapp messages, change his picture and then name herself “wife darling”. This could be the person who forwards exclusively “nagging-wife” kind of un-funny jokes to all whatsapp...
Bean Sprouts kurma

Bean sprouts Kurma – Tasty way to include sprouts into your weightloss diet

I have immense respect for people with fit bodies. It tells me that they work hard, are disciplined and can control their mind and mouth, the last of which I’ve never fully mastered. It is no mean feat. It is not easy eating healthy. Don’t agree? Try eating a bowl of raw bean sprouts every morning for breakfast. Why bean sprouts are so good for your weight-loss diet Bean sprouts have been a part of the diet of weight-watchers and fitness enthusiasts for ages because: They are low calorie but nutrient dense and full of fibre which means they fill you up, add a ton of good things to your body but don’t count for much. One cup of bean sprouts is just 100 calories. Bean sprouts are a good source of vitamin B2 that helps boost your metabolism. The high fibre helps ease bowel movements. The Vitamin C in bean sprouts keeps your skin, nails and hair healthy. More Sprouts Recipes to Come Knowing all this makes eating bean sprouts a no-brainer. But it doesn’t make it any easier. So I racked my brain to come up with recipes where I could incorporate these sprouts. I remember making a sprouts stuffed paratha awhile back that everyone really enjoyed. I wanted to add more easy recipes to that list. Thus was born this sprouts kurma and the sprouts dosai, sprouts stir-fry and other sprouts recipes you’re about to see in the coming days. Keep watching. This sprouts kurma is such a delicious, creamy rendition of the sprouts, you’ll have no qualms at all polishing off a cup of this sprouts kurma with rotis or idiyappam or dosai. I promise. I served them with benne kadubu – karnataka style rice dumplings. Oh My, they were such a pair. Also this kurma is so much easier than your regular vegetable kurma because there are no vegetables to cut. Easy and healthy. Win-win. And you managed to down your day’s dose of sprouts in style without gagging. Win-win-win! Try today! Do let me know in the comments if you have your favourite sprouts recipes. I’d love to hear.  
Sprouts stuffed paratha

Sprouts Stuffed Paratha

I always feel responsible when my maamiyaar seems cross. She may have had some disagreement with Jagan. She may be upset that the maid retorted defiantly. Relatives may be giving her grief. She may have an upset stomach. I still feel responsible. Most times I don’t know the reason but because I feel responsible I don’t ask. I need to know though. So I rewind and play the day’s happenings in my mind stopping to scrutinize at every step – Did I say the truth? Did I make seppankezhangu fry? Did I not react cheerily enough to something? Did I react cheerily to something? Last week she seemed particularly morose. I felt I was responsible. I didn’t ask. But I worried. I pondered aloud to Jagan who admonished me for being irrational and dismissed me as an obsessive worrier. He triumphantly told me later that day “She was unwell. She had had an upset stomach yesterday night and that is the reason she looks dismal. I told you, you are wrong. This is the way you screw up things.” Taking the opportunity, Jagan went on about how my instincts were not always right. I needed to be more chatty, I needed to text her, call her and generally act sweet. Sweet?! How do ya be that to the Maamiyaar? Somebody please (don’t) teach me. Hmm, Maybe I am overanxious. Maybe, I am over-reacting to everything. Knowing it wasn’t me I asked her that night “I heard you were sick. What happened?” “Was a terrible case of food poisoning. It was the tamarind rice I had at lunch.” I stutter “Puli Puli sadam? Maybe it was the medhu pakoda we bought yesterday”. I had made the tamarind rice (puli sadam) the day before. “No, it must be the Puli sadam. The Puli kaachal in the fridge was too old. I should have thrown it out.” “Hmm.. Oh” I slink off. I had not made the puli kaachal. She had. I had used the leftover puli kaachal sitting in the fridge. I had wronged. She had an upset stomach and I was responsible. I made these sprouts stuffed parathas in a fit of health consciousness. I realized I wasn’t replacing everything with millets. I wasn’t substituting all purpose flour and granulated sugar with ragi and beetroots. I reckoned a little bit of sprouts stuffed inside parathas would compensate in some way.  ...
light diet

Diet Plan for weightloss

I hope you’re doing great. How is weight-loss journey shaping up? Do you have any goals you want to achieve before the end of the year? I was thinking of setting a mini-goal for end of the year within my project 50k. End of the year is a little over a month away. But there’s a lot you can do in a month. I am going to be sharing a diet plan for weightloss today to help you stay on track. Truth be told, I’ve barely stepped in the gym the last few weeks. I spent the past few weeks hugging a hot water bag, a pain relief spray in one hand and popping tablets every now and then. I’ve been plagued by a persistent back-ache that still hasn’t gone away. I know now how it feels to not be able to bend at all. I also realized that I bend only when I am putting on my shoes or photographing food. I lower myself gradually into the chair and get up even slower. Nobody dare hustle grandmas and grandpas for being slow! It is easy to slip off the diet when you are not exercising. There just isn’t that motivation. But it is so important to stick to your diet to stay where you are, to not ruin the work you’ve done all along. I had a few readers ask me about the diet to follow for weightloss. So I decided to put together a couple of diet charts for the benefit of those who wish to lose weight. There are two versions of these diet plans – the light version is for beginners and anyone who doesn’t want to make too many drastic changes to their daily diet. The Advanced version is for the seriously disciplined kind who are up for a challenge. I have the vegetarian and non-vegetarian options for both diet versions. Feel free to use the diet plan that suits your goals best. I am no expert, far from it. I have lost weight in the past with the “light diet” and regular exercise (5-6 days a week). Jagan follows the advanced version of the diet plan and has seen impressive results. He works out 5 days at the gym in addition to a cross-fit class he attends 3 days a week. These are also some of the things that I’ve heard from dieticians. This...
Project 50k kickoff

Project 50K – Kick Off

Thank you friends for the overwhelming interest and encouragement to project 50k. It is way beyond what I imagined. Project 50k is no longer my personal project. It is a community project. I am dead serious about this project. Let’s do this. Today I am going to help you kick-start your project 50K. Be ready to make some changes in your life. The weight-loss Ideology We are going to take the most old-fashioned route to weight-loss which is simply “burn more than you consume”. Exercise + diet. I am sorry but it’s the only method that works. I wouldn’t recommend crash-diets simply because they’re not sustainable. You are more likely to stick to a reasonable diet in the long run. Diet without exercise is like waiting for a leaking bucket to empty itself when you can grab a mug and pour out water. Without exercise, you will take longer to lose weight. What’s more, you’re more likely to stick to your diet when you’re exercising. Really. When you’ve spent 40 mins huffing and puffing, sweating it out, you will think twice when you see a laddoo.   Step 1 In order to burn more than you consume, you need to track everything you burn and everything you consume. This is easiest to do with an app. Just search for a “Calorie counter” app. There are innumerable apps out there that’ll let you log in everything you eat and every step you take. Download one of these. I am using Mynetdiary. Here is a snapshot of my daily log. You can use this app or any other calorie counter app that you like. The idea is to record everything as accurately as you can. Once you set up your app, enter your weight, the target you wish to reach and the timeline, the app will give you a calorie budget for each day. You need to keep within this calorie budget every day. I want to lose 1 kilo every 10 days. So my calorie budget happens to be about 1000 calories. Most of these apps are built with the American audience in mind. So you may not find some of the meals that you are eating. Find the closest substitute on the app or google up the calorie profile of your meal. Remember that these may not be precise but you should be close.   I’ve been using this app...

Beetroot Rice

Nobody will forget this beetroot rice at my house, ever. It will be part of family legend. Generations to come will talk about how some Jayanthi long back woke up one Monday morning blank and inspiration-less, stared at the vegetable drawer in the fridge for a full 5 minutes without registering anything, grabbed some beetroots, tomatoes and chillies, set out to make tomato rice and beetroot poriyal but along the way remembered She was a food blogger, She was making tomato rice every 4 days exactly and She owed it to the world to invent new food And then she made beetroot rice instead. And then all hell broke loose. No kidding. It didn’t help that I’d fallen asleep the previous night reading “GoodFood” magazine (No, even GoodFood didn’t come up with this ingenious recipe. GoodFood would never make “Beetroot rice”, they’d make arugula, bean sprouts & feta over couscous cooked in beetroot jus). If I ever write a book, you’ll read how this beetroot rice (almost) changed my life. For now I’ll just give you a hint – Joint family – new dish – cold shoulder – Kaboom!! Hey, before you think it sucks – this beetroot rice looks and tastes pretty. I had it for lunch and so did Hasini. Hasini liked it too. I chopped up the beetroots and cooked them in a spiced tomato puree which brought out the lovely colours – the pink of the beetroots and the red of the tomatoes coming together into a beautiful pink-red burst (whatever that’s called – Maroon? Coral?). I didn’t plan that really but I’ll take credit for it anyway. I cooked it down to a thickish curry that’ll coat the rice without being too runny. I’d suggest mixing up cooked (and cooled) rice and the beetroot mixture in small increments to attain your desired level of “mixing”. “Mixing” is as important for variety rices as it is for sarakku (alcohol). Too much curry mix can really kill the variety rice. Always tread on the lighter side. Serve the excess curry in a bowl for those who’d like to add more. And make sure to not cook the rice too soft. Since the beetroot rice shocker, I’ve not ventured past Idli-chutney, Idiyappam-soup and not to forget tomato rice-potato curry combinations restraining my creative side. It has been tough. What do you think of a ragu of fried onions...

Lunch-Box Event Round-up

Did you notice how it’s un-characteristically pleasant here in Chennai (not counting the oppressive humidity just before the rains)? It’s been raining on and off the past week and even yesterday. Nothing like rain to lift the spirits. I really don’t understand these Brits always complaining about overcast skies. We love our rains. We celebrate rains. Our heroines wait for the rains to break into a dance (Oho Megam Vanthadho – Mouna Ragam – Classic, Vaan Megham – Punnagai Mannan – Another Classic. I love love this movie and every Balachander movie). Why not? If only I knew a few more moves, I’d dance too instead of land on my bum like l did last time trying to kick-splash some water on Chinnu. I’ve been busy doing nothing. I slept in the past couple of weeks because there was no Tennis class to wake up for. I’ve been lazy, not done much cooking or writing but I’ve been very very busy as well. I can be lazy and busy at the same time. Can you? I’ve now been packing Hasini’s lunch box for more than a month and I dare say I’ve mastered it. I’ve learnt a few neat tricks and a lot of cheat tricks along the way and I’ll share them on my blog for the benefit of other lazy moms. I really do think the “Lunch-box” topic is absolutely crucial for our economy and I need to have a dedicated space on Foodbetterbegood for this topic and I’ll update the space periodically. For starters I’ve rounded up some really yummy lunch box treats from several of my blogger friends in this post. This lunch-box theme of Kid’s Delight event (Srivalli‘s idea) happened in May this year. I’ll need to thank all my blogger friends who sent in their lunch box recipes to the event. Most of the recipes are now on my to-try list. I am sure they’ll become your kiddo’s favourites too. Steer away from the usual and give these recipes a shot. This lunch-box round-up includes all the usual kiddie favourites of noodles, grilled sandwiches and Thayir sadam plus a variety of variety rices, paniyarams and stuffed parathas. I hope these recipes inspire you to create some delicious lunch-boxes. After all, an empty lunch-box is the best compliment to lunch-packing moms. I hope these lunch-box ideas bring you lots of empty, licked clean lunch-boxes. Not to...
Chicken stir fry

Chicken & Bell Pepper stir fry

In the early days of my marriage, when we were in Bangalore less the joint-family, stir fries where the staple. We had stir-fries every-day for dinner. I had a kitchen all to myself (glorious times those) and all I did were stir fries those first few weeks (dumb me). But Stir-fries are the easiest, quickest and sometimes the healthiest options too. We’d have stir-fried vegetables, stir-fried sprouts.. This stir-fried chicken is quick and yummy. This stir-fried chicken was perfect for my little ones. They loved it. Each picture shows you a dynamically changing bowl of stir-fried chicken. Because my kids kept nibbling on the chicken while I tried to click these pictures. There are innumerable ways you can vary this stir fry but just make sure that you adhere to the basic principle of stir-fries. Always stir fry at high heat, while constantly moving the food around. You want your food to cook but you also want to retain the freshness and crunch. So the order in which you add vegetables is important. Capsicum/Bell peppers cook very fast and therefore you add them towards the end. If you were to add carrots or baby corn, you’d have to add them earlier or leave them to cook a little longer. If you want to add mushrooms, cook them separately till all the water evaporates and they’re nicely browned and then combine them towards the end. And don’t ever overcook chicken, it gets stringy and tasteless. I served this stir-fried chicken along with Thai red curry and steamed rice. My kids ate the stir fried chicken as is. You could also serve these alongside Mexican rice, sandwich them between two layers of toast slathered with some mayonnaise or roll them up in a tortilla along with your favourite sauces. Another great way to serve these to kids is to give them little toothpicks to pick out the chicken. My kids recently went crazy using their toothpicks at a restaurant. Try it. Prep time: 5 minsCooking time: 10 minsServes: 3 Ingredients Chicken Breasts – 2 cut into bite sized piecesCapsicum/Bell peppers – ½ cup chopped into bite sized piecesGarlic – 4 pods mincedGinger – 1 inch piece mincedOil – 3 tbspSoy sauce – 1 tspBlack pepper powder – 1 tspSalt to taste Method 1.      Wash and clean chicken. Pat dry and chop into bite sized pieces. 2.      Heat up a pan, add oil...

Thai Red Curry

You’ll want this one. This is the best Thai red curry out there and this recipe is absolutely fail-proof and you don’t have to import Kaffir lime or Galangal ginger from Thailand. You have my guarantee. What’s my guarantee? If it doesn’t turn out good, you can come here to my blog and swear/complain all you want and I wouldn’t retaliate. But you really wouldn’t have to. Just follow the recipe and don’t skip any of the ingredients and you’ll be on your way to a stunning restaurant grade Thai red curry. I say this with confidence because I’ve messed up before and spectacularly. I’ve not been to Thailand and I don’t know if Thai red curry is different there. I am talking about the Thai red curry in good Thai restaurants (Benjarong, Lotus and the likes) here. So purists who cannot tolerate substitutions, this may not be for you. I love a good substitution and this curry has a few beautifully apt substitutions. For those new to Thai cuisine, Thai red curry is a beautiful, aromatic curry (could be vegetarian or non-vegetarian) that is traditionally served with long grained steamed rice. The crux of the red curry is the red curry paste which is fried and then simmered in coconut milk. The ingredients that go into this curry paste are plain beautiful. We’re familiar with most of these flavours in Indian cooking but not in this combination or intensity. Lemon leaves, coriander root (or stems, the stuff we discard usually) fresh ginger.. Can you imagine how divine this must smell? The guy who thought of this combination is a genius. If you didn’t make out by now, I am a huge fan of Thai cuisine and I am not the type who orders the same thing every-time I go to a restaurant (I like to experiment, screw up), but with Thai food, it’s always Thai red curry for me.      I followed my instincts this time and didn’t follow any one recipe but combined and edited a few recipes (which among others includes a Goodfood magazine recipe and a Nita Mehta recipe) to arrive at my Thai red curry recipe. If you do have Kaffir lime, galangal ginger and birds eye chillies (cute looking little red chillies) by all means use them. I’ve listed both the original and the substitutes below so that you can use whatever you have...

Sweet Corn Fried rice

Sweet corn fried rice is a kid-favourite rice dish that is easy to put together (if you forget the vegetable chopping part for a minute) and would make a great main dish for a kid’s get-together. The adults will enjoy it just as much. The best thing about fried rice is that you can put in just about anything you fancy – mushrooms, peas, paneer, bean sprouts, shredded chicken, chopped up fried eggs or anything else and it’ll rarely disappoint you. When you are making fried rice in big batches like I did here, it is best to switch off the stove, combine the rice and vegetables and then heat through for a few minutes to avoid the rice sticking to the bottom of the pan and lots of scraping and stirring which would again break the rice. If you are doing in small batches, you can do this real time in a wok and even toss them around like they do in the fast food joints which would render that nice smoky flavour. A wok with a long handle is on my wish-list for some-time now. If I did get one I don’t know where I’d put it. The kitchen is already bursting at its seams with pots, kadais, sattis and gundaans. The kadais are already piled one atop another, masala dabbas in 3 lines and a another line stacked on top, the microwave oven stowed away in the loft and my convection oven and baking paraphernalia moved to a separate room. I think we should start using up the head room like they do in airplanes and trains (upper, middle and lower berths). Lower berth is full, middle is where we operate and half the counter is anyway occupied already. Upper berth is what we should target going forward. Prep time: 20 minsCooking time: 20 minsServes: 6-7 Ingredients Sweet corn – 300 gmLong grained rice/basmati rice – 3 cupsCarrots – 2 finely choppedGreen beans – 200 gm finely choppedGreen Capsicum – 1 finely choppedYellow capsicum – 1 finely choppedOnions – 2 large finely choppedGarlic – 6 cloves – finely mincedSpring onions – 3-4 chopped fine – whites and greens separatedSoy sauce – 2 tbspSugar – 1 tspWhite pepper powder/Black pepper powder – 2 tbsp (adjust)Salt to tasteOil – 2 tbsp + 3 tbsp Method 1.      Rinse the rice in 2-3 changes of water till the water runs clear....

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