Tag Archives: Healthy Eating

Cheers to a sweet indulgence that breaks no “keto” rules

Yesterday afternoon, my husband and I were at Saravana Bhavan for lunch.  Me hankering for my favorite combination platter, him scanning for his keto friendly options.  And when my plate came with sheera (a cream of wheat dessert), he was not a happy camper.  It was like a three-year-old who wanted to have the same dessert, but his disciplined nature would not allow him to!

Back home, I kept hearing the little groans of wanting a similar dessert.  So, with the ingredients in our pantry and fridge, I whipped up these almond dessert cups.  He loved them and of course, I was happy that they were ready in about 20 minutes (minus the refrigeration time, if you prefer it cold).

Ingredients:

1.5 cups milk (I used 2% since that’s what I had at home)

.5 cup heavy cream

1.5 cups almond flour

1 cup allulose (you could use erythritol)

1 tsp cardamom powder

2 tsp sliced almonds (plus a few more for decorating)

4 tsp ghee

How To:

Pour the milk and heavy cream into a heavy bottom pan and warm the mixture ever so slightly over a low flame.

Turn off the stove, sprinkle the almond flour, allulose, and cardamom powder into the milk/cream mixture and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon or spatula.

Turn the stove back on, add the ghee and keep stirring the mixture at medium heat till it thickens and is the consistency of thick glue (about 15 minutes).

Turn off the stove and portion the dessert into six little cups and top with the remaining almonds.

Enjoy!

PS.  You can have it warm or serve it cold after sticking it in the fridge for an hour.

 

Tangy meets spicy in this apricot chutney

I bought a batch of apricots from the farmers market and while they were yummy, they had a level of “new to the season” tartness to them.  Contemplating a variety of baking projects to use up the apricots, I hit upon an idea; could they take the place of tomatoes in a favorite, spicy chutney?

My excitement kicked up a couple of notches when I saw the farm fresh red onions waiting to be invited to this party.

Quickly, I assembled the ingredients.

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A few quick steps and out emerged a chutney which was fiery, tangy and super yummy!

Ingredients:

4 farm fresh apricots, seeded and cut into small chunks

2 farm fresh red onions, leaves removed and finely chopped

3 green chilies, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 1/2 inch piece ginger, finely chopped

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp mustard seeds

1 dried red chilly

1 heaped teaspoon hot curry powder

2 tbsps oil (I used avocado oil)

Salt to taste

1 heaped tsp cilantro leaves for garnishing

How To:

Heat the oil in a flat-bottomed pan or wok and when hot, add the cumin seeds, mustard seeds and dried red chilly.  When the mustard seeds stop crackling, add the onions, green chilies, ginger, and garlic and fry till the onions turn brown.

Add the chopped apricots, toss with the onion mixture and cook covered till the apricots are close to done.  They should be easy to smash with a spatula.

Add the salt and curry powder, mix well, turn off the stove and garnish with fresh cilantro.

The chutney is ready in 15 minutes and goes beautifully with steamed rice, flatbread, as a spicy condiment with eggs and more!

PS: Everyone’s spice tolerance varies, so please feel free to adjust the chilies and curry powder to suit your palate.

A Netflix episode of Chef’s Table inspires this dish

Like many of the foodies in the universe, I love watching food shows, listening to food podcasts, buying and getting cookbooks from the library….you get the gist.

A few nights ago, I started watching Episode 1 from Season 3 of Chef’s Table on Netflix.  In this episode, Jeong Kwan, a Buddhist monk from South Korea, espouses the virtues of cooking as a soulful process and how vegan food made with the simplest of ingredients can transport you to a state of bliss.  I don’t know if it was her energy, the beauty of the temple grounds, her artistic way of transcending simple ingredients or her penchant for storytelling that had me glued.  But when she narrated how her father transformed from feeling sorry for her because she gave up eating meat into a content man after tasting her shiitake mushrooms cooked with sesame oil and soy sauce, I could not rush out fast enough to grab ingredients to create this in my kitchen.

While Jeong Kwan did not necessarily share a recipe, it was simple enough to try.  I took the shiitake mushrooms and cut little indentations into the caps like she did.  I proceeded to saute the mushrooms in sesame oil and soy sauce with just one modification, the addition of thinly sliced ginger.

The result was a melt in your mouth amalgamation of flavors, one that took minutes to create but whose taste made me want to savor every bite 🙂

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Ingredients:

2 four oz packets of shiitake mushrooms

2 tbsp soy sauce

2 tbsp dark sesame oil

One inch square of fresh ginger, thinly sliced

Salt – only if needed

How To:

Remove the stems from the mushrooms and cut two slits crosswise across the caps (see picture).  Gently wash and dry the mushrooms.  Heat the sesame oil and when it is warm, add the ginger and fry for a minute.  Add the mushrooms and toss gently in the oil taking care that the mushrooms don’t break.  Add the soy sauce and toss the mushrooms gently again, coating with the soy sauce and sesame oil.  Add salt only if needed.  Cook for two-three minutes and turn off the stove.

Serve warm or at room temperature.

If you’ve created a dish from an episode of Chef’s Table, we’d love to hear about your version!

PS.  I’d like to give a shout out to chef Eric Ripert, a follower of Buddhist principles, for bringing us the talent and wisdom of Jeong Kwan.