Appetizers/ Mains

Healthy Low Carb Hara Bhara Kababs

When surprise guests grace my doorstep, I embrace the art of impromptu entertaining! A big reason for this is my arsenal of quick, healthy appetizers, which are always crowd-pleasers.

These Low Carb Hara Bhara Kebabs fit the bill. With their aromatic spices and vibrant flavors, they transform unexpected gatherings into unforgettable feasts.

Servings 3 – 4 persons
Course Appetizer / Main
Preparation Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes

Ingredients for the Low-Carb Hara Bhara Kababs

(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)

1 cup Spinach leaves (blanched & pureed)
1½ cups Cottage cheese, crumbled
¼th cup Coriander leaves, finely chopped
2 tsp Ginger garlic paste
1 tsp Green chili paste
1 tsp Red chili powder
1 tsp Coriander powder
1 tsp Roasted jeera powder
½ cup Powdered almonds (with skin)
2 tbsp Ground flax seed powder (optional)
As per taste Lemon juice (optional)
Salt to taste
Oil for frying

Instructions for the Low-Carb Hara Bhara Kababs

1. Mix all the ingredients for the kabab except the oil.
2. Taste and increase or decrease the seasonings.   The flax seed powder is used for kneading and binding the kababs.
3. Shape into round kababs and flatten them.
4. Heat a shallow fry pan and shallow fry the kababs with oil until golden brown.
5. Serve warm with chutney.


Appetizers/ Snacks

Rasgulla Chaat

Hold your horses, it’s time to reveal the mysterious case of Rasgulla and Chutney Featuring Rasgulla Chaat- I am guessing your initial reaction is “Not my cup of tea!” but I urge you to keep an open mind.

Many unexpected combinations in life yield fantastic results like Malai-Toast, and this chaat is just one of them. I was hesitant when I first tried this recipe. But as soon as I took a bite of this unconventional chaat all my doubts vanished into thin air. The sweet and spicy flavour of this spongy chaat is one of a kind. If you’re a fan of the texture of Dahi-Baras, this chaat is just for you!

Rasgullas are made of ‘Chenna’ (curd cheese) and are porous in texture. The rich and intense flavour of the chutneys penetrates the Rasgulla from within. Every bite packs a punch as it’s chatpata, meetha and teekha at the same time. This chaat is relatively healthy than other oil-laden chaats that are deep-fried.

Surprise your tastebuds with this mind-blowing chaat folks!

Servings 2 – 4 persons
Course Snack / Appetizer
Preparation Time 10 minutes
Cook Time

Ingredients for the Rasgulla Chaat

(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)

8 – 10 Nos. Rasgullas
1 cup Beaten yogurt
1/4th cup Imli chutney
1/4th cup Green chutney
1/4th cup Sev
A few Coriander leaves
Salt to taste
Red chili powder to taste
Chaat masala to taste
Roasted cumin powder to taste
A few Pomegranate kernels for garnish

Instructions for the Rasgulla Chaat

1. Squeeze the rasgulla of its juice up to 60%.  Pat dry and keep aside.
2. In case the rasgullas are big you can split into 2 halves.  Else layer the rasgulla as follows.
3. Put a spoon of beaten curd on each. Top with a tsp of imli chutney, followed by green chutney.  Season with salt, chaat masala, jeera and red chili powder.  Top with sev, coriander leaves and pomegranate kernels.  Serve chilled.



Palak Raita Spinach Raita – (A Sailana Recipe)

There’s nothing like a cooling bowl of raita on a hot summer day.  This Palak Raita is inspired by the regal culinary legacy of Sailana, a town in Madhya Pradesh.

Sailana has rich culinary history that traces back to its royal heritage.  The town was once the seat of the princely state of Sailana, known for its opulent lifestyle and royal kitchens.  The dishes skilfully balance spices, herbs, and ingredients to create a perfect amalgamation of sweet, spicy, tangy, and savoury notes.  This recipe is no different.

Add a touch of majesty to your everyday meals with this layered Palak Raita.

Servings 4 persons
Course Main
Preparation Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes

Ingredients for Palak Raita Spinach Raita  – (A Sailana Recipe)

(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)

2 cups Spinach, washed and cut finely
1 no. Onion, cut finely
3 – 4 tbsp Ghee
½ inch Piece of ginger, grated
2 nos. Cloves powdered
3 – 4 Cloves, whole
½ tsp Powdered Cinnamon
1 tsp Black cardamom powdered
3 – 4 Cloves of garlic minced
1/4th cup Water
4 cups Yogurt, beaten and strained
1 – 2 tbsp Sugar
Salt to taste
Curry leaves for garnish

Instructions for Palak Raita Spinach Raita  – (A Sailana Recipe)

1. Heat about 2 tbsp ghee in a kadhai.  Sauté the onions until brown.  Sauté the spinach and ginger.  Add 1/4th cup water and cook the spinach until it softens and water dries out completely.  Set aside to cool.
2. Take the yogurt in a bowl. Add in the ground cloves and cinnamon powder.  Add in sugar, salt and garlic minced.  Now mix the above-prepared spinach mixture.  Chill for 1 – 2 hours.
3. For the tempering heat the remaining ghee – add whole cloves, grated cardamom and 3-4 curry leaves.  Sauté. Add the tempering to the raita just before serving.  Serve chilled with your meals.


Others/ Snacks

Pani Puri

Golgappa, puchka, pani puri, pani patashe – whatever you want to call it, we all know and love it!

Growing up, Pani Puri was always one of my favorite street food snacks, and it still is. It’s a classic street food that’s loved by people of all ages I remember waiting eagerly for the vendor to set up his stall in the evening, the aroma of the filling and the sweet-spicy chutney wafting through the air.

The first bite of the crispy purl, followed by the burst of the tangy filling and the refreshing pani was always a delight to my taste buds. My recipe for Pani Puri stays true to the traditional flavours of this beloved dish, with a few tweaks.

So go ahead and give my recipe a try, and I hope it transports you to your memories of Pani Puri.

Servings 4 persons
Course Snacks
Preparation Time 15 minutes
Cook Time

Ingredients for the Pani puri

(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)

½ cup Mint leaves
½ cup Coriander leaves
1 No. Raw mango
3 – 4 Green chilies
2 -3 Lemons
Sugar as per taste
Salt as per taste
1 tbsp Roasted jeera powder
3 – 4 cups Water, chilled
1 – 2 Ice cubes

To Serve

1 cup Aloo chana masala or ragda
Imli chutney
1 packet Puris

Instructions for Pani Puri

1. Blend the mint, coriander, raw mango, green chilies, sugar, salt along with ½ cup of water and ice cubes.  Blend into a smooth paste.
2. Strain the paste through a sieve.  Add the water.  Check for taste.  (You can increase or decrease the spicy and sour ingredients as per your liking).
3. Add in roasted jeera and black salt, chill for 1 – 2 hours.  Serve with the aloo chana masala and puris.


Muhammara Dip

Muhammara embodies all that I love about Lebanese cuisine – it’s exploding with flavour, easy to prepare, and packed with nutrients.

I also love its unique colour – did you know that the name “muhammara” comes from the Arabic word “hammara”, which means “reddened”?

Servings 4 persons
Course Appetizer
Preparation Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes

Ingredients for the Muhammara Dip

(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)

2 nos. Red bell peppers
½ cup Walnuts (raw)
½ cup Toasted bread crumbs
2 tbsp Pomegranate molasses
1 – 2 tbsp Chili flakes
1 tsp Sugar
1 no. Lemon juice
1 – 2 Garlic cloves crushed
1 tsp Cumin powder
Salt to taste
Olive oil

Instructions for the Muhammara Dip

1. Rub a little olive oil on the peppers. Roast the peppers on a flame or preheated oven @ 180°C until the skin chars.
2. Remove once the skin is black, wrap for a few minutes with a tea towel.  When cool, peel and slice them.
3. In a bowl, mix all the ingredients with the roasted peppers.  In a food processor blend into a smooth paste.  Add olive oil to smoothen.  Chill the dip for a few hours.
4. Before serving drizzle with olive oil.  Garnish with toasted walnuts and parsley. Serve cold with lavash and crudités.

Baba Ganoush

Preparing for the week ahead?  I love making a batch of this Baba Ganoush on Sundays – it’s perfect for any snacking I want to do through the week!

Baba ganoush is a rich and creamy dip that offers a delicious blend of earthy and smoky flavours.  The brinjal & tahini make it feel decadent, yet it’s so healthy and low in calories!

It’s also full of antioxidants from the brinjal, anti-inflammatory properties from the garlic, healthy fats from the tahini, and essential nutrients, like Vitamin C, Vitamin K, and potassium.

Servings 4 persons
Course Appetizer
Preparation Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes

Ingredients for the Baba Ganoush

(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)

2 med. Size Brinjals
¼ cup Tahini paste
1 no. Lemon juice
2 – 3 cloves Garlic crushed
1 – 2 tbsp Hung curd
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste (optional)
Olive oil – extra virgin
Toasted pine nuts for garnish
Sumac for garnish
Parsley for garnish
Pomegranate kernels (optional) – for garnish

Instructions for Baba Ganoush 

1. Wash and scrub the eggplants (brinjals) with olive oil.  Roast them directly over the flame.  Using tongs, keep turning eggplant every 5 minutes or so, until skin is charred on all sides.
2. Remove eggplant and allow it to cool.  Once cooled, remove all excess water thru a colander.  Remove the charred skin and just keep the flesh aside.
3. Take the eggplant flesh, mash with fork.  Add tahini, hung curd, olive oil, garlic, pepper, and salt.  Blitz for just half a minute in a food processor.
4. Now chill the dip for 1 – 2 hours.
5. Drizzle with olive oil.  Garnish with pomegranate kernels, sumac, toasted pine nuts, and parsley.   Serve at once with pita bread.

Tzatziki Dip

From Ancient Greece to your kitchen!

Tzatziki is one of the most well-known dips and for good reason.  It is a refreshing and zesty dip that bursts with a complex array of refreshing and tangy flavors. It’s particularly perfect for the summer – the combination of the cooling yogurt & cucumbers means you’ll stay hydrated through the rising temperatures.

Servings 4 – 6 persons
Course Appetizer
Preparation Time 15 minutes
Cook Time

Ingredients for Tzatziki Dip

(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)

2 cups Greek style yogurt
½ cup Finely grated cucumber
1 No. Lemon juice
2 – 3 tbsp Extra-virgin olive oil
2 – 3 Nos. Garlic cloves, grated
A few Mint leaves, shredded
1 tbsp Dill leaves chopped (optional)
Salt to taste

Instructions for Tzatziki Dip 

1. Hang the yogurt in a muslin cloth for 2 – 3 hrs.
2. Place the grated cucumber on a towel and gently squeeze out the excess water.
3. In a bowl, combine the yogurt, cucumber, dill, mint, garlic, lemon juice and salt.  Drizzle the olive oil.  Chill for a few hours until ready to use.  Serve with crudités and warm pita.

Mango Falooda Ice cream

I am the first to admit that I have a problem – whenever I see Falooda on a menu, or cart, I must have it!  While I know some don’t like it, I absolutely adore the silky and creamy feel of it.  Also, it doesn’t hurt that if someone else doesn’t want to share, that’s more for me.

This Mango Falooda recipe takes textural complexity to a different level.  With layers of falooda, luscious mango, velvety ice cream, topped with a perfect crunch of nuts, it’s the perfect quick, yet indulgent, dessert for those long summer days.

Servings 2 glass (tall)
Course Dessert
Preparation Time 10 minutes
Cook Time Nil

Ingredients for Mango Falooda Ice cream

(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)

2 tbsp Soaked subja seeds (basil seeds)
2 tbsp Falooda sev (cook as per packet instructions)
4 tbsp Rose syrup
6 tbsp Fresh alphonso mango pulp
6 – 8 tbsp Fresh alphonso mango diced
2 scoops Mango ice cream
½ cup Chilled milk
4 – 6 tbsp Mango jelly
1 – 2 tbsp Pistachios for garnish
1 – 2 tbsp Almond slivers for garnish

Instructions for the Mango Falooda Ice cream

1. In both the glasses add the following ingredients equally

a) Subza seeds

b) Falooda Sev

c) Mango pulp

d) Chilled milk

e) Chopped mango pieces

f) Mango ice cream

g) Rose syrup

h) Mango chopped once again

i) Mango jelly

j) Pistachio and almond slivers

2. Dig in immediately. Serve chilled.




Mango Shrikhand

Did you know that Shrikhand is one of India’s oldest desserts – it can be traced back to 500 BC!

While it originated in Gujarat & Maharashtra, it’s now loved nationwide, and I can understand why!

This traditional Indian dessert is made summer ready, with sweet mango pulp, creamy yogurt, and delicately flavored with cardamom and saffron.  It’s easy to make, and a real crowd-pleaser!

Absolutely perfect for a summer evening treat or a weekend brunch (or anything in between).

Servings 4 persons
Course Dessert
Preparation Time 10 minutes
Cook Time Nil

Ingredients for Mango Shrikhand

(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)

3 cups Fresh and thick yogurt (curd hung for a few hours)
1½ cups Alphonso mango pulp
¼ to ½ cup Sugar
¼ tsp Cardamom powder
3 tsp Saffron milk
Pistachios to garnish
1 No. Chopped mango to garnish

Instructions for the Mango Shrikhand

1. Whisk the curd and sugar together with the help of a whisk until smooth and creamy.
2. Add in the mango pulp, cardamom powder and the saffron dissolved in milk.  Whisk well.
3. Set aside to cool for at least one hour.
4. Before serving, garnish with chopped mango and pistachio slivers.
5. Serve chilled.

Note:   You can increase or decrease the sugar quantity based on the sweetness of your mango quality.



Keri Ki Launji

Who else can’t live without their favorite condiments?  Whether you’re a mustard fanatic or a hot sauce aficionado, they can take your meals to the next level! I love making my own, and this tangy, zingy, and delightful Mango Launji is the perfect accompaniment to my meals!

Servings 4 persons
Course Main
Preparation Time 10 – 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes

Ingredients for Keri Ki Launji

(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)

4 – 5 Nos. Small raw mango (kaccha keri) cut into cubes
3 tbsp Oil
2 tsp Methi dana
2 tsp Cumin seeds (jeera)
2 tsp Rai (mustard seeds)
1 pinch Of hing (asafoetida)
2 tbsp Kalonji
2 – 3 Bay leaves
2 – 3 Red chilies, whole
2 tbsp Saunf seeds
A few Curry leaves
½ tsp Haldi powder
1 tbsp Red chili powder
1 tbsp Coriander powder
1 tsp Jeera powder
Salt to taste
3 – 4 tbsp Sugar
2 tbsp Jaggery powder
½ – 1 cup Of water

Instructions for Keri Ki Launji 

1. Heat oil.  Splutter the bay leaves, red chilies, cumin, mustard, neem leaves, methi dana, hing, kalonji and saunf seeds.  Let it cook for 1 – 2 minutes
2. Add in the raw mango cubes and salt and haldi powder.  Add in about ½ cup of water.
3. Cover a bit and cook.  Once it softens, add in sugar, jaggery powder, red chili powder, coriander powder and jeera powder.  Cover and cook for a few minutes.  If its too dry add some water.
4. Once cooked, taste and check seasoning.  Season accordingly.  Serve hot.
Note:  The sugar and jaggery quantity also depends on how sour the raw mango is.  This dish should be sweet and sour in taste.