Cran-Pump Smoothie

Happy New Year!

It’s that time of the year for New Years Resolutions…

To kick off healthy eating in the new year, here’s a smoothie recipe following the theme of the 21 day diet recipes.


1/2 cup almond milk
2-3 tbsp greek yogurt
1/2 cup cranberries
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 tsp almond butter
1-2 tsp maple syrup
1/2 frozen banana

Blend all ingredients in a blender with a little water and enjoy!

See Also:

21 Day Tummy Diet
Reader’s Digest 21 Day Tummy Diet
Green Smoothie Challenge

Quinoa Dum Biryani

It has been some time since I made this. As usual, wasn’t disappointed. A little variation from the last time, but here’s how I made it this time.

1 cup Quinoa
1 cup Cauliflower florets
1 cup beans cut into 1in pieces
1 potato cut into 1in pieces
1 cup green peas
1/2 onion sliced
1tomato chopped
2-3 bay leaves
1/2tsp cloves
1 tsp cumin seeds
1-2 star anise
4-5 cardamon pods
1 tsp black pepper
1-2 tsp garam masala
1-2 tsp ghee
1-2 tbsp oil
1-2 bay leaves
handful of cashews and raisins
Cilantro and mint chopped to garnish
small piece of ginger
2-3 garlic cloves
dash of turmeric
dash of red chili powder
salt to taste

Bring two cups of water to boil. Rinse and add quinoa. Reduce flame to medium. Cover and cook for 12-15 min or until the water evaporates. Set aside.

Meanwhile place a large pan on the stove. Add 1-2 tbsp oil and let heat. Add turmeric, bay leaves, cloves, cardamon, anise, cumin, and black pepper seeds. Fry lightly. Add minced garlic and ginger and continue frying.

Thinly slice onions and add to the pan. Continue frying. Add chopped potato, carrots, beans, peas, and cauliflower. Mix well and continue frying. Season with salt, garam masala, red chilli powder as desired. Add a little water, cover and cook for 10-15 minutes or until vegetables soften and are cooked. Add cooked quinoa and mix well.

Heat a little ghee in a pan and lightly fry cashews and raisins.

Season biryani with cilantro, mint leaves, fried cashews and raisins. Serve warm with some raita.

Tis the Season …. for Airplane Cookies

Happy Holidays!

It is that time of the year…

I had some left over toffee bits and dark chocolate chips and went looking for a recipe that I could use. This year’s airplane cookies are loosely based on this recipe. As always I improvised and this is how I made mine.


2 cups whole wheat pastry flour

1/2 brown sugar

1 stick butter

1/4 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla essence

1 egg substitute

1/2 cup toffee chips

1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl.

Whisk together butter, sugar, egg substitute, vanilla essence with a wooden ladle in a separate bowl.

Mix dry and wet ingredients. Add toffee and chocolate chips. Use water as needed. Mix well.

Roll out the dough on a flat surface and shape cookies using airplane cookie cutter. Layout cookies on parchment paper in an oven safe pan. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Cool on a rack. Eat as is or decorate with some icing. Yummy!

Whole Wheat Cranberry Orange Bread

Thinking about this…

Fly 'n Cook

I decided to go all the way this time and use whole wheat flour and wasn’t disappointed. The final product  was tasty and healthy. And my friends at dinner thought so as well.

This recipe is adapted from here.

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup amaranth flour
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 cup fresh cranberries
3/4 cup fresh squeeze orange juice
1 tbsp orange rind
4 tbsp unsalted butter
1/2 cup walnuts
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl mix the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, baking soda and orange rind. Cut butter into cubes and using your hands mix it into the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl whisk together egg, orange juice and vanilla essence. Combine dry ingredients with wet ingredients. Stir in…

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Black Eyed Peas and Collard Greens

Happy New Year!

Staying with the ongoing tradition, I cooked black eyed peas and collard greens this New Years too. Rather than soup this year I tried this easy, quick, and simple recipe. I made no changes to the original recipe other than the quantities. It turned out delicious.

Here’s how I made mine.


  • 1/2 cup black eyed peas
  • 1 bunch collard greens
  • 2 Roma tomatoes
  • 1 clove garlic
  • salt and fresh ground pepper
  • cayenne pepper
  • lemon juice
  • some parmesan cheese

Soak dry black eyed peas overnight or for 8-10 hours in some water.

Rinse the black eyed peas, add one cup water and cook. I usually like to pressure cook my beans.

Heat some oil in a pan. Add minced garlic and fry lightly. Add chopped collard greens and fry for 5-6 minutes. Add chopped tomatoes, and black eyed peas and continue cooking. Season with salt and peppers. Drizzle lemon juice and continue frying till moisture evaporates. Sprinkle cheese and serve warm with some bread.

Have a Happy and Healthy New Year!

Toffee Chip Airplane Cookies

Line up & Wait

It’s that time of the year … for Airplane Cookies!

I have been wanting to use toffee for sometime and had picked a bag of them some time back. So the choice this year was easy. I went looking for an egg free toffee cookie recipe and I wasn’t disappointed. The shapes didn’t work out perfectly, but the taste was still delicious. My recipe is loosely based on this one. Here’s how I made mine.


2 cups whole purpose flour

1/2 stick butter

1/2 cup sour cream

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup toffee bits

1/4 cup water

chocloate icing for decoration

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix sugar, butter and sourcream and whip until well mixed. Meanwhile mix other dry ingredients. Combine everything. Roll out batter using additional flour to prevent sticking. Using airplane cookie cutters cut into desired shapes.

Lay out cookies on a baking plate lined with parchment paper. Bake for 20-22 minutes until cooked. Cool. Decorate with some chocolate icing if desired. Else can also add chocolate chips along with toffee bits.

Enjoy with a hot cuppa tea!

Happy Holidays!

Zoodles Week

I had a zucchini and yellow squash that were ready for use. Inspired by the Red Lentil Spaghetti from last week, I went looking for some zoodles recipes and I wasn’t disappointed. I was immediately attracted to this one: Thai Tofu Noodle Soup. Maybe it was because I recently had Panang Curry at True Food Kitchens. I only made minor changes to the original recipe, and it turned out delicious. Served with some wild rice, it was a perfect entry into the quick lunch series.


I still had left over zoodles and the second recipe I tried interestingly enough was also with Thai flavors: Thai Peanut Zucchini Noodles. I did not make too many changes to that recipe as well, other than sprinkling some sriracha, crushed red pepper, and Szechuan sauce. 


Sprinkled with cashews (instead of peanuts) and served with left over wild rice, it too was a perfect entry into the quick lunch series!


See Also:

Quick Lunch Series: Zoodles

Quick Lunch Series: Red Lentil Spaghetti

Last time I was in the grocery I had picked up some organic red lentil spaghetti. Although my original thought was to use it in a traditional pasta recipe, I changed my mind when I came across this twist on one pot Enchilada Pasta.


I did not have all the ingredients used in that recipe. As always, I improvised as I cooked. In the end, turned out great. Here’s how I made mine.


1/2 packet of organic barilla pasta

1 cup of frozen Santa Fe vegetable mix

1 green bell pepper

2 Roma tomatoes

some onion and garlic

some taco sauce

roasted corn and black bean cotija cheese salsa

sour cream


salt to taste

chili lime and taco seasoning

olive oil

Heat some oil in a pan. Add onion, and garlic and fry for 1-2 minutes. Add peppers and tomato and continue frying for a few minutes. Add salt and other seasoning, and sauces. Mix well. Add pasta whole or break into chunks. Add water and bring to a boil. Reduce flame to medium, cover,  and continue cooking for about 20 minutes or until the pasta cooks and water evaporates. Add sour cream and cheese and continue cooking for another few minutes.


Sprinkle some cheese and serve warm. Makes about 2 servings.

Quick Lunch Series: Quinoa Vegetable Soup

Good recipe when you have assorted vegetables and greens that you want to use off. This recipe is loosely based on this one.


1 can Great Northern white beans

1/4 cup quinoa

1-2 cups of assorted vegetables (I used bell pepper, yellow squash, carrots, celery)

2-3 Roma tomatoes

1/2 bunch of kale greens

green onions


lemon juice

salt and pepper


dashes of dried basil, thyme and oregano

Heat oil in pan. Lightly sauté onion and garlic. Add chopped vegetables and greens and continue to fry for 5-6 minutes. Add quinoa and two cups water (or use broth) and bring to boil. Reduce flame and continue cooking until the quinoa is cooked, about 15-20 minutes. Add more water if necessary.


Rinse and add beans. Season with salt and pepper and other seasoning. Stir and continue cooking for another 5-10 minutes. Makes about 2-3 servings.

Serve warm with some bread. Can also add some cheese if desired.

Mexican Cauliflower Rice with Black Beans

Here’s one more recipe with cauliflower rice that always works…


2 cups cauliflower rice

1 cup black beans

1 cup corn

3-4 mini tri colored peppers chopped

5-10 mini heirloom tomatoes sliced

some chopped onion

chopped avocado

pickled jalapeno slices


salt and pepper

chipotle chilli powder or chilli lime powder

some olive oil

lemon juice

sour cream (optional)

In a pan, add oil and sauté onions, peppers and tomatoes and continuing frying for 4-5 minutes. Add cauliflower rice, season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle some chipotle or chili lime pepper and continue cooking for another 5 minutes. Drizzle some lemon juice, sprinkle some cilantro leaves.

Serve warm topped with some avocado and pickled jalapeno. Can also add some sour cream.

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