Dahi vada (Dumplings in spicy yogurt)
Dahi vada is a perfect summer snack. It can be made ahead of time and should be served cold, so makes it a great party dish. It is also a kid’s friendly snack.
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cooking time: 20 mins
For Dahi vada (4 servings)
Urad dal (white) – 1cups
Moong dal (yellow) – 1/2cup
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Asafoetida powder- 2 pinches
Freshly grounded black pepper – 1 tsp
Green chilies – 2
Cooking oil to fry
Salt as per taste
Yogurt – 2 cups
Whole milk – 1/2 cup
Chaat masala – 1 tsp
Black salt – 1 tsp
Sugar – 1/2 tbsp
Red chili powder – 1 tsp
Roasted cumin powder- 1 tbsp (grounded)
Tamarind Chutney – 1/2 cup
- Wash Urad dal and moong dal thoroughly and soak it in water for 6-7 hours.
- Grind soaked dal with green chilies in fine paste using very little water. Add asafoetida powder, cumin seeds, black pepper and salt to the paste. Mix the batter for few minutes. It will incorporate some air to the batter and make it light.
- Heat cooking oil for frying the vadas.
- Take small lemon size batter and fry it in the oil. Repeat till all the vadas are done. It should be golden and crispy.
- Keep some room temperature water in a big bowl. Put the fried vadas into the water submerged. After 5 minutes, take the vadas out of water and press each vada with your palm to take the water out.
- To prepare yoghurt, take yogurt in a bowl and add ½ cup whole milk and whisk evenly. Add salt, sugar and chaat masala and keep aside.
To serve, place 2-3 vadas in a shallow plate. Add yogurt on the top evenly. Garnish it with red chili powder, roasted cumin seeds, salt as per taste and tamarind chutney. Serve at room temperature or chilled.
Eggless blueberry muffins are great for healthy breakfast or a snack.
Approx. 12 muffins
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 25 mins
- All-purpose flour – 2 cups ( I used 1 cup whole wheat flour + 1 cup all purpose flour)
- Sugar – 1 cup
- Baking powder – 4 tsp
- Milk – 1 cup
- Melted butter – 3 tbsp
- Fresh or frozen blueberries – 1 cup
- Preheat oven at 350 degrees F.
- Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.
- Combine flour, sugar and baking powder in a large bowl. Stir in milk and melted butter slowly . Fold in blueberries.
- Fill each cup 2/3 full.
- Bake at 350 for 25 minutes.
This Mexican dip is a party favorite. It can be prepared in advance and refrigerated. It should be served at room temperature. You can add any ingredients of your choice but below is the list of most preferred ingredients in a seven layer dip.
Approx. 6 servings
- Re-fried beans – 1 can (16 oz)
- Taco seasoning mix – 1 (1 ounce) packet
- Sour cream – 1 (16 ounce) container
- Guacamole – 1 cup (homemade or store bought)
- Salsa – 1 cup
- Tomato – 1 large chopped
- Green bell pepper -1 chopped
- Green onions – 1 bunch chopped
- Sliced black olives – 1 (6 ounce) can, drained
- Shredded Mexican cheese – 2 cups
- In a medium bowl, blend the taco seasoning mix and re-fried beans. Spread the mixture onto a large rectangle glass container.
- Spread sour cream over the re-fried beans.
- Top the layers with guacamole and salsa.
- Now add layers of tomato, green bell pepper, half green onions and top with Mexican cheese.
- Garnish with sliced black olives and remaining green onions.
Serve at room temperature. Enjoy with your favorite tortilla chips.
Thali means platter. This platter is special because it has all the dishes served on festivals. This particular is for Navmi (last day of Navratra). This food is offered to Goddess and then to nine little girls. The compulsory dishes for the offering are Halwa (Pudding), Puri (Fried Indian flat bread) and Kala chana (Black gram). Rest of the menu is optional.
I have already posted the recipes for Halwa(Pudding), Kala Chana, Khaman Dhokla and Shahi Kheer.
Link for Aata Halwa or Pudding recipe:
Link for Kala Chana recipe:
Note: But for this special festival navratri menu, avoid using onions and garlic in the food.
Link for Khaman-Dhokla recipe:
Link for Shahi Kheer recipe:
Shakarpara means sugar treats. These are small diamond shaped sweets usually made during Diwali or other festivals. These sweets can be stored in air tight containers for 3-4 weeks.
Approx. 12 servings
- Wheat flour – 1 cup
- All purpose flour (Maida) – 1/2 cup
- Ghee or butter – 1/2 cup
- Sugar – 1 cup
- Milk – 1/4 cup
- Cooking oil for frying
- In a large bowl, combine wheat flour, all purpose flour and ghee. Mix well.
- Ina sauce pan, combine milk sugar and 1/2 cup water. Bring it to a boil till the sugar dissolves completely. Take it off the heat and let it cool.
- Now add sugar syrup little by little to the flour mixture and knead it into stiff dough.
- Let the dough rest for 5 minutes.
- Heat the oil in a pan for frying on medium heat.
- Divide the dough into 4 equal parts. Take each part and roll the dough into 1/4 inch thick sheet.
- Cut the sheet into small diamond shapes with the help of knife or the pizza cutter.
- Carefully fry these diamonds in the medium hot oil till it becomes golden on both sides.
- Drain them on the kitchen towel and cool them completely.
- Once these diamond shaped shakarparas are completely cool, you can store them in air tight containers for 3-4 weeks.
Enjoy these sweet treats with a cup of coffee or masala tea.
Here is an easy no-stove pasta recipe. It can be prepared before hand. And you are sure to impress the guests!
Approx. 6 servings
- Shredded mozzarella cheese – 4 cups
- Ricotta cheese – 1 (15 ounce) container
- Frozen chopped spinach – 1 (10 ounce) package thawed and drained
- Jumbo pasta shells – 1 (12 ounce) package cooked and drained
- Pasta sauce – 1 (28 ounce) jar
- Salt as per taste
- Freshly ground black pepper – 1 tsp
- Cook jumbo pasta shells as directed on the package. Do not overcook them. Keep them al dente.
- Preheat oven at 370 degrees F.
- In a large bowl, combine cheeses and spinach; stuff into shells.
- Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Lightly grease it.
- Apply a layer of pasta sauce in the cookie sheet.
- Arrange stuffed shells on the layer of pasta sauce. Pour remaining pasta sauce over the shells. Cover and bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes or until heated through.
- Uncover the sheet. Sprinkle some mozzarella cheese on the stuffed pasta shells and bake it uncovered for another 5 minutes, till the cheese melts and turns golden and crusty.
Enjoy warm Stuffed jumbo pasta shells with your favorite salad on the side.