Tuesday, October 30, 2012


~ Healthy Halloween~

Halloween brings out the kid in all of us. Funky costumes, crazy 
decorations , colorful marketplaces and tons of treats -everything 
just looks out of some story tale. No doubt Halloween  the most fun
yet scary time of the year . With all the trick o treat fun, comes a scary 
 overdose of artificial colors  and sugar laden candies causing cavities.

Hungry ghouls and goblins would surely love to munch on these 
 sandwiches without actually losing out on fun. Just a few ingredients 
and you are ready to scare away your kiddos sugar cravings with 
these easy to make cutie treats .......make sure to prepare these in 
advance so that  you can fill the lil tummies  with lots of whole 
grain and veggies before they hit the streets to trick or treat. 

Funky Frankenstein 

Turn a simple sandwich into cute green monster Frankenstein 
sandwiches.... What about pairing the fun with a ghosty egg ???

Spread some mayo, bread spread or flavored cheese spread on a slice
 of bread. Lay some cucumber ribbons and top with slices of carrot , 
olive, pea , and red bell  pepper ( for mouth). Use cheese and nachos to
 make teeth , scar and hair respectively. Draw some funky features 
on a hard boiled egg andf let the fun begin.

Juicy Jack- o - Lantern 

This adorable Jack o lantern sandwich is easy  to make  and frightfully
 fun to eat ... pair it up with an eyeball egg n let the voodoo begin.

Spread some mayo, bread spread or flavored cheese spread on a slice
 of bread. Lay some carrot ribbons and top with some beet and cilantro.
Draw a scary eyeball and veins  on a hard boiled egg and let the fun begin.

Yummy Mummy 

Yummy mummy starts as a simple slice of bread but slowly slowly 
takes shaaaaape of a MUMMeeeeeeehhhhhhh  !!!!!!!!! Add more 
fun and life by serving with a zombie egg......

Spread some hummus, pesto  or flavored cheese spread on a slice
 of bread. Lay carrot & olive eyes & top with radish  ribbons . Draw 
some zombie features on a hard boiled egg n get ready to cast a spell. 


Some unshelled hard boiled eggs & colorful food markers &  is 
all that you need to make this lil Halloween edible craft. 

Have a wonderful Boolicious Halloween .......full of fun & frights .

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Halloween -2

~Happy Halloween~

The magic of Halloween , big bright orange pumpkin o lanterns , colorful
candy corns and uncanny devilish food had made a silent place in my little
teen mind. My first introduction to the eeerie ghostly festival was through
Agatha Christie's - Halloween party . During that time the dictionaries and
 encyclopedias were our Google and I still remember the endless hours and
efforts i had put in to know about this festival extravaganza  absolutely
unknown to the Indian kids back then. Mom ,  an ardent listener to both
my sensible and senseless teenage talks listened  patiently about my
stories from the other half of the globe.

Till half a decade back Halloween was almost unheard here but 
the popularity of the festival grew in leaps and bounds ... n today 
many homes, offices , restaurants and  clubs are a part of the ongoing 
scary fun. Funky Jack o lanterns, eerie masks, creepy costumes and
bewitching knick n knacks are a common sight at  upscale markets. 

During this time of the year when the markets are full of brightest 
pumpkins and the tables and minds are flooded with craziest 
 spookiest hallowlicious treats - a punch  of pumpkin is perfect to 
pamper little ghouls and goblins . Pair this pumpkin cake with some
 funky and  healthy Halloween  treats and  let the magic begin ......

 Healthy Halloween

Halloween is incomplete without draculicious foods. These creepy
delicious treats are easy to make and free from artificial colors 
n  preservatives. 

Choco Pumpkin Bundt 
 (with glazed ganache) 

partially adapted from joyofkosher

1/2 cup whole wheat flour , 6 tbsp all purpose flour, 3/4  cup brown sugar -
( can be substituted with regular sugar ),6 tbsp cocoa powder,   3/4  tsp baking
 powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1/4  tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp allspice, pinch of
nutmeg, pinch of salt, 1/2 cup milk mixed with 2 tsp lemon juice, 200 gms
 pumpkin puree( I used freshly boiled n mashed pumkin) , 1 eggs, 2tbsp
olive oil, 2tbsp  honey , 1 tsp vanilla extract.


Preheat oven to 180C. Grease n dust a  6'' bundt and keep aside.
Sift together flours, sugar , cocoa , baking powder, soda, spices & salt.
In another bowl whisk egg n mix in milk & puree. Stir in oil , 
honey n vanilla.Gradually stir in the dry ingredients . Transfer the batter
 to the prepared pan.Bake in a preheated oven for 40 -45 mins or till
 toothpick inserted in thecentre comes out clean. Cool on a wire 
rack for 15- 20 mins. Unmold n cool for an hour. 
Drizzle with glazed ganache.

For ganache - Melt 150 gms dark cooking chocolate add 1 tbsp butter ,
 n 1/2 cup cream ( I used Amul with 25% milk fat  )- stir until completely
mixed and  glossy . Cool n pour. Serve.

Thursday, October 18, 2012


~ Healthy Halloween ~

Halloween is incomplete without  adding fun to food . 
During this time of the year when kids are sinking their teeth into 
junk foods, calorie and artificial color laden desserts and whackiest 
candies wouldn't it would be wonderful to give a twist to their 
 treats with some Boolicious Spooky Oats Apple  Spiders . 
Just a few slices of apples, black grapes/ berries  & Strawberry
 flavored Quaker Oats is all thats needed to add some Halloween 
goodness and lots of fun to their breakfast !!!! 

Itsy Bitsy Oatsy Spider 

Strawberry flavored Quaker Oats , 2 black grapes/ berries, few apple slices .

While the rest of the world is gearing for Halloween , India 
is gearing up for the festival season too . Check out my recipes and
 photographs - Sweet Surprises in the October issue of Child 
magazine India (Pg 70 -74 and  also some Ethnic Entree on Pg 50) 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Mexican Mania

~ Mexican Mania ~
The Indo Mexican way

Nothing can be easier than making some  power boosting, protein 

and energy packed Quesadillas. Besides being a perfect crowd pleaser ,
 this versatile Mexican snack is great kick of nutrition for tiny little 
taste buds. Wiki says - Quesadilla ( pronounce - kesadiya) is a flour
 / corn tortilla ( pronounce- tortiya) or a roti filled with a savory 
mixture containing cheese , bean mash and other ingredients , folded 
into a half moon shape and warmed till the cheese melts and 
the top becomes slightly crisp. The dish originated in Mexico 
and the name is derived from Queso - cheese in Spanish . 

A fusion of Indian and Mexican taste this Indo Mexicana version boasts

 of some boiled and  mashed kidney beans ( rajma beans ) tangy tomatoes,
 crunchy onions and peppers and a pep of  garlic - but you can add just about
 anything to customize these to your taste buds. I love my portion with some 
extra punch so off goes in lots of  green and red chillies and roughly torn
 aromatic basil ........ :) :) 

I always dream of making some  corn ones with the traditional Mexican flour  
Masa Harina someday  - but its unavailability urged me to switch over to the 
multigrain version. Hidden with the goodness of whole wheat flour, soy flour, 
oats and  some cornmeal ( makki ka atta) these are perfect for a snack or a 
complete meal.  

It wouldn't  be incorrect if i call these a colorful  makeover of the age old humble 
stuffed parantha . A generous mash of spiced veggie bean mixture , some cheese 
and lots of love is all thats required to make these .

 Even if there are some left over rotis -go ahead with those !!!! A stylish name 
some tangy accompaniment and it sets off to become a hit with the family esp the
 lil ones. Paired ours with some  mango salsa- I was lucky to spot some
imported varieties of mangoes even in this off season . But you can replace
 it with some kiwis, avocados , melons, pineapples even papayas or any soft 
pulpy sweet fruit of your liking. 

Multigrain Quesadillas 
(Multigrain tortillas filled with cheesy bean and veggie mash )

Serves 2-3 
For tortillas -1/2 cup whole wheat flour ,1/3 cup oats flour (powder Quaker Oats
in a mixer till fine ), 2 tbsp soy flour, 2 tbsp cornmeal ( makki ka atta ) , 2 tbsp milk, 
salt to taste and some warm water for kneading . 
For bean mash filling - 1 cup boiled and mashed kidney beans( rajma) , 
1 large onion finely chopped , 2 tomatos finely chopped, 1/4 cup chopped bell 
peppers , 2 tsp chili -tomato sauce ( or regular tomato sauce) 2-3  flakes crushed
 garlic, 1/4 cup  grated mozzarella /  cheddar cheese,  Salt to taste, 2-3  tsp vegetable oil 
( for shallow frying) 

Mix all the tortilla ingredients & knead into a soft pliable dough. Keep aside for
 10- 15 mins. Divide into 4 roundels & roll into flat discs or rotis on a lightly
 floured surface. Put on a hot skillet and flip once small specs appear . 
Cook from the other side till lightly browned. Place on a clean paper towel 
and cover  loosely with a cloth napkin. Keep aside. 
Heat a tsp oil in a pan, sauté garlic and onion. Add tomatoes and cook till mushy.
Mix in bell peppers, mashed beans, sauce and salt. Cook for a  min .
Spread the bean mixture on a tortilla ,sprinkle grated cheese & cover 
with the second tortilla.Cook on a greased skillet for 3-4 mins or till both
 the sides are crisp and golden.Cut into wedges and serve. 

Sweet & sour Salsa - Mix together  1/2 cup chopped ripe mango / kiwi/ 

 avocado , 1 chopped onion, 1 chopped tomato, 2 tsp lemon juice, 1 tbp finely 
chopped mint/ basil/ coriander. Season with  some salt and pepper . 
Toss well and serve. Tastes great cool. 


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