Thai Fusions – Quinoa Veg salad with Crunchy Cashews

#30days30salads

Day 2

 Day 2 dawned bright and early! Yay! No thunderstorms today. Plus its TGIF moment/ day/ revelation. While the hankering for tangy , spicy is inbuilt in my genes, the heat outside also meant I was not willing to eat something that was “right of the stove” kind. So needed something, that is cold and crunchy and yielded all nutrients as well and Voila!

Thai fusions – Quinoa Veg salad with Crunchy Cashews

 Cooking time : 15 min   Prep time : 15 min  Serves : 4

  •  Cooked Quinoa : 2 cups
  • Broccoli slaw : ¼ cup thinly sliced or finely chopped
  • Cucumber : ¼ cup thinly sliced or finely chopped
  • Red Cabbage : ¼ cup thinly sliced or finely chopped
  • Sweet mini peppers : ¼ cup thinly sliced or finely chopped
  • Raw or firm Mango : ¼ cup finely diced
  • Cilantro: ¼ cup finely chopped
  • Toasted Cashews : 12-14 halves
  • Red Onion : ¼ cup thinly sliced ( optional)

Dressing:

  • Peanut Butter : 3 tbsp
  • Fresh Ginger or Mango ginger, grated :1 tsp
  • Soy sauce : 2 tsp ( optional)
  • Honey : 1 Tbsp 

  • Red wine Vinegar : 1 Tbsp
  • Olive oil : 1 tsp
  • Sriracha hot sauce : 1 tsp ( optional )
  • Luke warm water : 3 Tbsp
  • Wedges of Lime /Lemon : Garnish

Prep work, Assembly and Serve: 

For the dressing:

  • Add in all the ingredients for the dressings in a bowl and stir until smooth and creamy.
  • Add in more water , if you would like to thin it out a bit more.

Salad Combine:

  • 
In a large bowl combine the vegetable ingredients of the salad and toss in gently with most of the salad dressing.
  • Gently fold in the quinoa.
  • Add in the remaining dressing to your taste.
  • Garnish with cilantro and chill in the refrigerator.
  • When ready to serve, add in a wedge of lime for garnish and preference.

  

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Cold Minty Garbanzo Salad – Farmer’s bounty in a bowl! (Chole/channa fruit and veg salad)

Gorgeous Garbanzo salad that simply explodes with flavors of mint and lime with fresh crunchiness of baby carrots and apples, and dash of tangy kiwi and crisp cucumbers.

Soaking time : Overnight                  Prep and cooking time : 30 min

 Serves : 4

Ingredients:

  • Garbanzo beans ( Kabuli channa ) ; 1 cup dry. Soaked overnight and pressure cooked with a pinch of salt the next day
  • English cucumber : 1 small (Finely chopped )
  • Red delicious apple : 1 small (Finely chopped )
  • Kiwi : Peeled,1 small (Finely chopped )
  • Baby Carrots : 10 (Finely chopped )
  • Mint : few sprigs (Finely chopped)
  • Cilantro : ¼ cup Finely chopped
  • Lemon or Lime : 1-2. Juice extracted
  • Salt : A Dash to taste
  • Chaat Masala : 1 tsp
  • Thai Green Chillies: 2 (Finely chopped ) Optional
  • Onion : ¼ (Finely chopped) Optional

Prep work and Assembly :

  • Soak the Garbanzo beans overnight in sufficient amount of water. The next day you can pressure cook it tender with a pinch of salt.
  • Let the beans cool down very well.
  • Next add in the finely chopped vegetables and fruits and gently toss it in. Add in the Onions and Thai chilies if you decide so.
  • Add in the chopped mint , salt to taste and chaat masala and juice of lime.
  • Gently toss the mix until it is finely coated
  • Chill in the refrigerator for an hour or so. Especially good in hot summer nights.
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve.
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Spicy Tomato Relish – Tomato Thokku (Zing in the tongue)

I often get into one of those “ I so need to clean the pantry “ moods .. especially when I have something major lined up. In this case , it was prepping for the 30 day salad event and with 2 family birthday part events lined up, including one with a herd of teenage boys in the house (shudder ) running amok fueled high on pizza and cake. If you think that’s bad, you see I have another one lined up in 48 hrs – this time it’s a bunch of rising first graders ! Try pizza, cupcake and juice this time .. Plus we do have a family and friends grilling event lined up as well. I love my life .. if I don’t have enough madness thrown at me, I am capable of self- inflicting it! And old habits die hard. You see , I would be one of these maniacs who believed that chasing the dust bunnies and labeling the containers, yields to peace of mind. After all, I would be the one majorly cleaning up my room before an exam !

In any case, I am digressing . So on one of these infamous treasure hunts through the pantry, I discover a stack of cans –3 organic Kirkland tomato paste and 3 cans of Hunt’s diced tomatoes to be precise. I toyed with making homemade pasta sauce vs a nice tomato relish in the tradition Indian style. And guess which won???

Prep time : 10 min                Cook time 30-40 min  

Ingredients:

  • Organic Tomato Paste : 3 cans
  • Diced tomato in juice : 3 cans ( blended )
  • Flavorless oil : 3 tsp
  • Mustard seeds : 2 tsp
  • Asafoetida : A generous pinch
  • Curry Leaves : 12 – optional. Washed and dried thoroughly
  • Tamarind paste : 1 tsp
  • Fenugreek seeds or Methi seeds : 1 tsp
  • Red chilli powder or Parika powder : 1-2 tsp

Method

  • In a nonstick pan, dry roast 1 tsp pf fenugreek seeds and mustard seeds till they sputter and you notice a faint red color on the former. Let this cool down and pulverize it to get a smooth dry powder and set it aside.
  • In a nonstick wok or big sauce pan , heat the flavor less oil and add in the Hing and 1 tsp of mustard seeds.
  • Once the mustard seeds sputter add in the blended ( run the diced tomatoes in their juices in a blender to smoothen it ) tomatoes and stir.
  • Cover partially and let the mixture reduce to half its volume. In effect you are trying to get rid of the water content through heat reduction.
  • Now add in the paste of the tomatoes from three cans and stir it well along with the added teaspoon of tamarind paste.
  • You will see the mixture thickening considerably.
  • Let it thicken some more and then add in the salt, and chilli powder and stir well.
  • In about 10-15 minutes, you will see the mixture thickened to a soft jelly consistency. Take care not to work this on very high heat.
  • Now add in the pulverized mixture of fenugreek and mustard seeds – 1 tsp. Stir well and turn off the flame .
  • Let this cool down completely before storing it in a dry mason jar.

 Notes:

  • Work the mixture on medium high heat. The idea is to get rid of the water content. Working on very high heart will risk the mixture getting burnt.
  • Add in the fenugreek mustard seeds at the penultimate stage. You really do not want to add it in early on. It might result in bitterness been imparted .
  • If you choose to add in the curry leaves, it needs to be added in the stage before you add in the blended tomatoes.
  • Check the spice and salt levels before you add in the dry powder mix.

This is a great side and accompaniment for Idli’s, Dosa’s, Bread  and more.

 

Tomato Thokku
Tomato Thokku

TK 2

 

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Chocolate Chip Banana Walnut Cake

Tweaked from my own recipe….The awesome light and fluffy banana cake..

The only addition I did was adding of handful of white chocolate chip and semi-sweek dark chocolate chip in the mix. Stirred some right in and just added a few to layer the surface.

Yield : 12 M-L muffins/ cupcakes and big fluffy 9 inch one !

Verdict : Delish!