Appetizers

Matar ki Kachori (Green Pea Kachoris)

Kachori

Quintessential winter staple snack at my home is the matar ki kachoris. An irresistible mouth-watering appetizer that vanishes in minutes once it reaches the dinner table.

Best made with fresh peas that flood the markets specially in the northern parts of India during these few months.

So all the kachori fans hurry and make this one before the season ends!

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Desserts

Gond ke Ladoo

Gond ke Ladoo

A winter ritual in my home every year is the making of gond ke Ladoo . Dadima ka nushka to keep us healthy warm and strong during winters is to have one ladoo a day . We usually make a big batch for the winter months and have one heated up each day.

Gond is a good source of calcium this helps in keeping the bones and joints strong. Being heaty, it hereby helps in providing heat to the body during cold winters. Also given to nursing mothers during their confinement period as it helps in strengthening the backbones and aids in lactation.

Care should be taken whilst buying gond. Good quality gond should be sourced. Also, the gond should be fried well as a slightly raw one can cause stomach problems.
So here’s the traditional recipe of my home. Each household has their own secrets. Some also include coconut, turmeric, ground ginger etc in it.

So what’s the wait for! Hurry and make this soon before the winter ends. Do share the feedback as always!

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Desserts

3 Layer Toblerone Mousse

Toblerone Mousse

With the Christmas festivity in the air and holiday season approaching, it’s time to indulge in easy to make party desserts. Sharing with you all a recipe I learnt in a class a few years ago – A three-layer Toblerone chocolate mousse. This triple chocolate mousse is the dream of every chocolate lover like me. Simple and easy to make the same can be replaced with any rich – dark, milk, and white chocolate slabs such as Lindt, Callebaut etc. 3 layers of this smooth, silky & creamy mousse can be set in a bowl or individual jars. So what’s the wait for. Hurry and try this perfect dessert recipe for parties, birthdays, Christmas celebrations, holidays, etc

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Soups & Salads

Protein Packed Salad in a Jar

Salad

So much talk about immunity, and rightly so, is the reason you see this myriad of nutritious colours stacked in a jar! A complete jar of protein that I carry to work on busy weekdays.

A great go-to meal for practically anytime, you can simply alter the jar size and change ingredients to suit one’s palate and nourishment requirements. Oh, and you have the flexibility to dress your own salad to deal with the fuss of children and adults alike!

I have done mine in a way that works best for me but feel free and experiment! It’s your playground so obviously your game and your rules! Just make sure, your body and senses both win!

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Mains

Pindi Chana

Pindi Chana

Synonymous with North Indian cuisine my Pindi Chana recipe has truly been perfected over the years. Loved by my close friends and family, this dinner time staple is a must-try. As promised here is the full recipe for all my followers to try out! Do share your feedback on Instagram.

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Menus, Meals and More

7 unique recipes that are a must try this Diwali!

Diwali dishes

The first thing that comes to mind when you think of Diwali is the lights and the festivities but for me, a close second has to be food– and plenty of it! Let’s face it Diwali is the one time in the year you can gorge on these delectable delights without the guilt! Here are my top 7 must-try Diwali recipes to make for your family, this festive season! These recipes include some of my personal tried and tested favourites, so you can be sure to wow your family as you enjoy the festive cheer!

Wishing you and your family a very happy Diwali and a Happy New year in advance!

 

1. Bedmi Puris Served With Sweet N Sour Pumpkin and Potatoes in Tomato Gravy

The epitome of Festivity and Celebrations…yes, that’s what Diwali symbolises for me… it’s the glitter of lights… the joy of adorning myself…mingling with family n friends alike…the sound of crackers, but above all, it’s the sheer indulgence in our traditional foods!!! Click here for the full recipe.

 

2. Chilli & Basil Paneer

Start your Diwali festivities with this Chilli & Basil Paneer and experience your palates flooded with delectable textures and flavours! A great source for vegetarian protein, this recipe is best served as an appetiser and has anunflinching flair to jazz up any party. A pleasant twist to the ubiquitous Chili Paneer, this concoction is marinated in Schezuan sauce and topped with crispy fried basil for thatdistinctive zingy flavour! A sure shot rage no matter who’s on your guest list!!! Click here for the full recipe.

3. Kesari Meetha Chawal or Sweet Saffron Rice & Mogar or Sookhi Moong Dal

Merely the thought of this timeless dish makes my mouth water. However, every time I thought of making it, an apprehension gripped my mind. Will I ever be able to make it as well as my grandmother does? Initially, even my knowledge and experience of making complex western deserts did not give me the adequate confidence to make such great Indian / Marwari classics! The thought of making “Chashni” (Sugar syrup) always seemed like an uphill task, almost akin to the fear of a horror film! Click here for the full recipe.

 

4. Traditional Marwari Diwali Thali

Lights, Fire crackers, festivity, and celebration is what instantly comes to my mind on the auspicious occasion of Diwali !The shopping, the parties, the Mithais and Namkeens are added childhood memories for me.But what really stirs nostalgia is the traditional Diwali dinner, churned out of age-old recipes which include an array of savoury and sweet dishes. This elaborate meal is served in ourChandi Ki Thali (Silverware), a once in a year indulgence and truly a treat to the eyes as well. This Diwali is no exception! Click here for the whole recipe.

 

5. Gulab Jamun dunked in Gulkand Rabri

Gulkand ‘n’ chewing Pan is widely synonymous in India and never fails to stir sweet memories! Added to the quintessential Rabri with its history from Varanasi and Kolkata, the culmination is an absolutely divine concoction! Dunk the ubiquitous Indian sweet Gulab Jamuns into it and you can be sure of an explosion of flavours and textures on your palate!!! A great Mithai to lighten up your Diwali n a pleasant spin on the traditional offerings!!! Click here for the full recipe.

 

6. Nolen Gud Sandesh layered with Edible Gum

Nolen Gud Sandesh layered with Edible Gum !!! The artisan Gud travels all the way from Kolkata to Indore during winter months and gets ensconced into this delectable Bengali speciality adorning your table like a priceless artefact! Served warm, this dessert has a smooth texture which simply melts away in your mouth! Click here for the full recipe.

 

7. Almond Praline Phirni

I have always detested milk and milk-based desserts since childhood. My mom not only struggled to flavour it but also disguised its whiteness before I would even consider having it. Great Indian favorites like Rabri, Kheer, Phirni were a strict ‘No’ for me! However as things had to turn out, my husband simply loves all of them and any dessert with the remotest resemblance to them. Click here for the full recipe.

I hope you give these recipes a try and I’m sure your loved ones will really enjoy these unique recipes! Don’t forget to share your recreations with me on Instagram. @dinewithgitanjali 

Soups & Salads

Pomelo Salad

Pomelo Salad

Ancestor of the grapefruit, this gorgeous fruit tends to be quite citrus, however, inspite of the innumerable health benefits may require an acquired taste! Loaded with vitamin C & antioxidants, its sought after ability to keep you fuller for extended durations makes it highly desirable. Not a common sight in Indore, I was delighted when a few from my friend in Ahmedabad landed in my kitchen, though it left me wondering how to make it palatable for my kids and husband! One thing for sure, my whole family is quite the connoisseur of Thai food so I had most of concerns ironed out. I Immediately put together a few Thai essentials such as basil, birds eye chilli & soy sauce and voila this salad was ready…Believe it’s really this simply, delectable, nutritious and can become the talk of any gathering!!!

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Menus, Meals and More

6 Healthy Navratri Dishes to try this festive season

Navratri

Navratri, a Hindu festival that spans nine nights and ten days, is celebrated every year. “Nava” in Sanskrit means nine and “ratri” meaning nights. During these nine nights and ten days, nine forms of Shakti Devi are worshipped.

Fasting for these nine days is a common practice followed in many Indian homes. According to an ancient belief, one should adopt a saatvik diet during this period. But have you wondered why? Besides the religious belief and sentiment, there’s a scientific reason for the same.

Navratri usually falls around the month of March-April and the other during October-November. During this time of seasonal change, our immunity tends to decline, and therefore, it helps to switch to light, sativk food that doesn’t burden our digestive system.

For me fasting means completely giving my system a rest by eliminating all fried and fatty stuff as well. So here’s a list of recipes we usually prepare during Navratri which enables us to eat clean as well as gives us the required nutrition.

1. Water Chestnut & Cucumber Salad

My Water-chestnuts & Cucumber Salad ‘n’ it’s tryst with “Navratri”! Many across India change over to a ‘Satvik’ dietary mode during this festive time of the year. Wonder why ? To cut to the chase, October – November is when the seasons change and wage war against your immunity! This recipe is an absolute no-brainer! Click here for the full recipe.

 

2. Fariyali Dudhi Na Muthiya – Navratri special Muthiyas

Hi friends! Here’s to all those who are observing the traditional “Navratri” fasts. Don’t go on a feasting binge eating programme, by resorting to fried puris and halwas. Instead, look out for healthy, clean eating options to give your digestive system the much required rest. Click here for the full recipe.

3. Samak ki Tikki (Mordhan Tikkis) (Barnyard Millet Cutlets)

Samak, mordhan aka Barnyard millet, is one of my most favourite millets to cook with. With it being a good source of protein, and relatively low in calorie, this tikki features quite often in my regular dinner menus as well. Click here for the full recipe.

4. Fariyali Roestii

Despite the common myth, fasting can in fact be healthy. A spin on the authentic Swiss ‘Roestii ’ and voila, you have a delectable recipe to make Navratri fasting a celebration! Click here for the full recipe.

5. Barnyard Millet Salad

Of the myriad of Indian festivities “Navratri” is truly widely celebrated, one wherein many North Indians fast for these auspicious 9 days, some to please the deity and others to rest and rejuvenate their bodies. As a natural outcome respecting both, a conscious adherence to certain select foods has been practised over time. The “Barnyard Millet” or “Mordhan” or Samak” as many of us know it, is quite a multifaceted ingredient and can be used in an assortment of recipes including my all-time favourite salad. Click here for the whole recipe.

6. Nolen Gud Sandesh layered with Edible Gum

Nolen Gud Sandesh layered with Edible Gum !!! The artisan Gud travels all the way from Kolkata to Indore during winter months and gets ensconced into this delectable Bengali speciality adorning your table like a priceless artefact! Served warm, this dessert has a smooth texture which simply melts away in your mouth! Click here for the full recipe.

So happy fasting everyone! Do not feast but fast. Detox and clean up your system before the upcoming Diwali season.

Appetizers/ Others

Fariyali Roestii

Fariyali Roestii

Despite the common myth, fasting can in fact be healthy. A spin on the authentic Swiss ‘Roestii ’ and voila, you have a delectable recipe to make Navratri fasting a celebration!

I have simply substituted the regular potato with it’s healthier cousin i.e. sweet potato, one available in plenty during this time of the year and added grated carrots. A mini dollop of a cool ‘minty tzatziki dip’ makes it attractively delicious. Mostly loved by children and a great party snack as well, do give this ‘fariyali’ carrot and sweet potato rosti a try this Navratri season

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Appetizers

Samak ki Tikki (Mordhan Tikkis) (Barnyard Millet Cutlets)

Samak

Samak, mordhan aka Barnyard millet, is one of my most favourite millets to cook with. With it being a good source of protein, and relatively low in calorie, this tikki features quite often in my regular dinner menus as well.

Samak Tikki makes up an ideal carb protein fibre combination for a meal.

Instead of deep frying the same, I prefer to shallow fry them in organic ghee. So here’s a great recipe to try for those looking for a healthy detox during the ‘Navratri’ season

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