Golden berries also known as Chilput/Chiraputli in India are also known as Peruvian wild berries. Sweet and tangy to taste, they are a favourite with the family. This particular batch was a little too tart, so ended up making a smoothie. Added a small piece of green chilly to give it an Indian touch!
12 Golden Berries
200 ml thick Yoghurt/Curds
1/2 green chilly
1 strand coriander leaves finely chopped
Sugar as per requirement
Wash and liquidise the golden berries along with the sugar. Tip in the green chilly and use the pulse mode to crush it. Drop in the chopped coriander leaves and the Yoghurt. Whip and serve immediately.
Note: The Yoghurt should be chilled well before making the smoothie.
Babies in most Konkani households begin their solids with this Nanchanya bolu/ ragi porridge. Finger Millet is highly nutritious, as it is rich in iron and vitamins and sprouting it increases the B complex content in it. This was one food that I continued giving both my children for breakfast instead of the usual glass of milk as it is not only nutritious but also very filling. Easier and faster instead of getting them to eat breakfast(which can be packed in the tiffin box) at 6 am in the morning before leaving for school.
1kg Finger Millet / Nachani/ Ragi
1/2 kg wheat
Wash both the Ragi and Wheat well and soak in water for a day. Drain out all the water and tie in a cloth. Allow it to sprout. Sprouting time depends on the humidity and temperature. After it has sprouted, dry it in strong sunlight for four days. Store it in an air tight container and powder as required.
To make the Porridge.
1 glass of milk (250ml)
1 tsp powder
1 tbsp jaggery syrup or a small piece of jaggery
A pinch of salt
Mix the powder well in milk and only then cook it along with the jaggery and salt on a gentle flame till it bubbles. Allow to cool and serve.
Futi Kadhi is traditional Kokum Kadhi made by the Goans and is served with lunch as it is a good digestive. It is made by soaking Kokum peel in hot water and may or may not be tempered as per preference.
10 Kokum peels
2 green chillies
A large pinch of Hing/asafoetida
5 tbsps of jaggery syrup
750 ml warm water
2 tbsps finely chopped coriander
Soak the Kokum peel in 250 ml of warm water for about half an hour. Crush them gently with your fingers and tip the extract into another container. Keep adding warm water to the peel and squeezing the juice out of the Kokum peel till all the 750 ml of warm water has been used up. Crush the green chillies coarsely and tip it into the Futi Kadhi. Mix thoroughly and strain it. Add the Hing, Salt, Jaggery syrup and chopped coriander leaves. Refrigerate. Serve chilled.
For the chai lovers here comes a freshly brewed cuppa. Ginger and Cardamom or the intoxicating fragrance of the freshly ground spices added to the chai while it is boiling away merrily add a zing to the good old method of brewing a cup of plain Chai.
1 tbsp each of the following spices:
Heat all the above mentioned spices in the microwave for about a minute. Powder them fine and store the spice powder in an airtight container.
250 ml milk
100 ml water
1/2 tsp of spice powder
3 tsps sugar
2 tsps tea leaves
Pour the milk and water into a pan. Add the spice powder and sugar and bring to a boil. Simmer gently for a minute and then add the tea leaves. Simmer again for a minute. Switch off and shut the pan tightly with a lid. Allow the flavours to infuse for about two minutes. Strain the tea and serve hot.
Water apples are in season, and I was lucky to get some juicy and luscious ones! Fruits are best eaten as is, but the colour was so tempting that I decided to juice them. Cool and refreshing!!
12 Water apples
1 heaped tbsp Sugar free
A pinch of salt
A pinch of pepper
Juice of one lemon
500 ml cold water
Wash and slice the Water apples. Blend them to a paste in the mixer. Add water and pass the paste through a seive. Add sugar free, salt pepper powder and lemon juice. Serve chilled with ice cubes added.
Sol Kadhi is a digestive made from Kokum/Garcinia Indica extract. A coolant and a delicious drink, the seasoning to the Kadhi depends on individual preference. Some prefer to season it with hing/asafoetida and some like it with a tempering of mustard seeds and curry leaves. I like mine with crushed garlic and green chillies and garnished with coriander leaves. It can be served as an appetizer or along with a meal.
1/2 of a large coconut
3 tbsps Kokum agal/extract
2 green chillies
5 garlic cloves
Grind the coconut to a fine paste with water. Extract the coconut milk. Strain and keep aside the first extract. Add half a glass of water again to the residue and grind. Strain again and add the first and second extract together. Crush the green chillies, garlic and salt and after straining it, tip it into the coconut milk. Add the Kokum agal , salt and chopped coriander leaves. Serve chilled.
Smoothies are not only a quick and easy way of taking care of those hunger pangs, but are also healthy and delicious. I usually have one mid afternoon when it’s too hot for that cup of tea or coffee. Posting a Banana Smoothie today.
4 elaichi /small variety Bananas
1 litre thick curd/Yoghurt
3 tbsps honey
Sugar as required / I use Sugar free
A few ice cubes
Chop the Bananas into tiny pieces and blend them along with sugar, curds, honey and a few ice cubes. Serve with sliced Banana.
Lassi thougha Punjabi delicacy, is now popular in even the remotest parts of India. It is nothing but Yoghurt churned and sweetened with sugar or with salt. Fruit Lassi in a variety of flavours too is available but my most favourite is the Kesar Elaichi Lassi that is the Sweet Lassi flavoured with Saffron and Cardamom and garnished with Pistachios. The traditional Rajasthani churner is a gift from a very dear friend Ramesh Chittal.
1 litre thick curd/Yoghurt
15 tsps sugar
9 Cardamom pods
A large pinch of Saffron
12 Pistachios shelled and slivered.
Churn the curds well. Powder the sugar, saffron and Cardamom and tip it into the churned yoghurt. Mix well. Pour in tall glasses or even tiny earthenware and serve chilled garnished with pistachios.
The Beetroot juice that I am posting today is flavoured with lemon, a couple of green chillies and a sprinkling of coriander leaves. Beet on its own is sweet, so addition of fruits only increases the sugar content of the juice.
2 large Beetroots
2 green chillies or as per taste
Juice of one lemon
Coriander leaves to garnish
Deskin the Beetroots and wash them thoroughly. Chop them into thin slices and juice them along with the chopped green chillies in a juicer. Tip the pulp into a bowl. Do not use a mixer to juice, as the heat causes the enzymes to break down. Add two glasses of water. Mix thoroughly. Strain. Add lemon juice and finely chopped coriander leaves. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
Thandai which literally means a coolant, is a drink made during the festivals of Holi and Shivratri. It is milk enriched with dry fruits, saffron and fennel. Traditionally ‘Bhang’ which gives one a ‘high’ is added to the drink. The one I have posted today is without it. It is absolutely delicious!!!
5 cups milk boiled ( do not use skimmed or low fat milk)
1/2cup powdered sugar
A few strands of saffron
1/4 tsp pepper corns
1/2 cup almonds
2 tbsp khus khus/poppy seeds
2 tbsp saunf/fennel
10 Cardamom pods
A handful of dried rose petals
Fresh rose petals for garnish
Soak the almonds and peel them. Powder the Cardamom, poppy, fennel, pepper corns and dried rose petals and mix it thoroughly in the milk. Grind the almonds to a fine paste and add them too. Refrigerate for three to four hours and then strain it. Add the sugar and saffron. Mix thoroughly and serve garnished with fresh rose petals.