Sweet Potato Toast

One day, while I was grocery shopping, I saw a box of sweet potato slices in the frozen section. I decided to try it at home. It is easy to make, healthy and for those who are on a low carb keto diet, whole 30, have gluten or dairy allergy or just want to eat less carbs, this is great. I had just made sundried tomato pesto and used that as a spread. I also added avocado on that and made my version of avocado toast, which is the ‘in’ thing to eat. My son commented that I was eating like the millenials. I had some baingan bharta which I used as a spread too. Top it whatever catches your fancy.

Ingredients

  • 1 Sweet potato
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 375ºF (190ºC)
  • Slice sweet potato , 1/4 inch thick
  • Place on a pan in one layer
  • Drizzle with olive oil
  • Bake for 15 to 20 mins
  • If you do not have an oven- parboil teh sweet potato, slice and pan fry with a little oil.
  • Top with whatever you want and have it as breakfast, snack or as dinner.

My Mom’s Tomato Thokku/ Chutney

My mom is a wonderful, gutsy, amazing woman. Some of my first memories of her was playing volleyball with her students, her saree tucked up. She was the first person in her village to go to college. She is a sportswoman who was a sports teacher at a college in Bangalore. She treated her students like her kids; sometimes making me jealous. She was hard working and passionate about her profession. I must have imbibed that from her. She has slowed down with age, but she is still that gusty woman. I don’t think I have ever told her this, but I am so proud of her and look up to her!

My mom

My mom never cared about cooking much; maybe with her busy schedule. However, there were certain dishes that she made superbly. There were some dishes which are not common, some of them are from Coorg, others she picked up on the way. Today is her birthday and thought I would put up one of her recipes in her honor. Happy birthday, Mummy!

My mom made a lot of chutneys. One of her favourite was coriander chutney. She also made a mint chutney to go with sandwiches. I remember her making mint chutney sandwiches to take for her students when they went for day long athletic events. This is another chutney my mom makes. It does take time to make but it stays for at least a month in the fridge. The ingredients are few, but it packs a punch. It goes really well in sandwiches, idli, dosas and methi roti/theplas. I used heirloom tomatoes for this. But any tomatoes will work, preferably meaty ones.

Ingredients

  • 3 kg ( approx 6 pounds) tomatoes, (try to get meaty tomatoes)
  • 4 tbsp salt
  • 10-12 dry red chillies (or fewer if you do not want it spicy)
  • 1/4 tsp asafoetida powder
  • 10 cloves garlic
  • 4 tbsp oil

Directions

  • Cut tomatoes in pieces. Sprinkle salt and let it sit in the fridge for a day
  • Drain the tomatoes in the colander and let it sit
  • Squeeze the juices out of the tomatoes
  • Spread it on a pan
  • Preheat oven to 200F (approx 100C)
  • Place tomatoes in oven for about an hour till it dries out. (My mom dries it in the sun)
  • Cool
  • Grind the tomatoes with garlic, asafoetida and red chillis
  • Heat oil. Add tomato mixture and fry on a low flame
  • Cook for about 30 mins and keep mixing
  • Cool and store in an air tight container
  • Stores for at least a month, if it lasts that long

Stir fry Dumplings/ Momos

Last week I bought some chinese dumplings. They used to be something I liked to eat as a snack. The last ten years in India I was introduced to momos, they are tibetan dumplings and were available everywhere, small stalls outside supermarkets to restaurants and I loved them.

My friends Angie and Upesh invited us for dinner and made momos. They make some of the best, tasty momos. After eating their momos, everything else paled in comparison. If I had their momos, I would just eat them plain.

Once, in a small food truck, I ate momo chilli fry. This can be considered an indian-chinese dish. I tried making something similar but added more vegetables to make it a wholesome meal and easy one to make on a weekday. I found some enoki mushrooms which I used other than the button mushrooms. You could use any dumplings you choose, vegetarian or otherwise. I love adding dumplings/momos to soups in the winter too.

Ingredients:

8-12 momos  / dumplings

½ large onion or 1 medium onion

1 tbsp chopped garlic

½ tbsp chopped ginger

1 carrot – sliced lengthwise

5-6 broccoli flowerets

4-5 mushrooms, sliced

Capsicum/ Green peppers – ½ to 1, sliced

Baby corn (optional)

Green chillies (optional)

Soy sauce approx. 1 tbsp

Red chilli / siracha sauce approximately 1 tbsp

Rice wine vinegar 1 tsp

1 tbsp vegetable oil

Spring onions- 2 tbsp chopped

Salt to taste

Directions:

Heat oil in a pan or wok

Add momos/ dumplings and pan fry them. Remove and set aside.

In the same pan, add a tsp of oil if required. Add onions, garlic and ginger and fry till golden. Add green chillies if you want it extra spicy. I did not add it.

Add veggies (choose 2-3 vegetables of your choice) and stir fry till crisp. I usually add mushrooms first and cook and add the others later so they do not get overcooked.

Add sauces and salt. Be careful with the salt as soy sauce has salt. Also, different soy sauces have different sodium levels.

 Add the dumplings/ momos and stir fry.

Sprinkle chopped spring onions and serve hot as an appetizer or a main. Enjoy!

Mango Salsa

Mango is called the ‘King of Fruits” and in India, we believe it is. When mangoes are in season, we hardly even look at another fruit. We are lucky to live near an agricultural campus where they grow organic mangoes and a huge variety of them. During the season, we eat mangoes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The season starts beginning of April and goes on till the monsoons hit in July and every few weeks we get new varieties of mangoes, which taste different. Other than just eating them, we make curries (with small ripe mangoes) and other savoury dishes like mambalam pulliserry, morkootan, etc.

Ingredients

  • 3 ripe mangoes – chopped
  • 1-2 green chillies, chopped finely
  • 1 onion, chopped fine 1 tomato, chopped
  • 2 tbsp coriander leaves/ cilantro – chopped
  • juice of 1 lime
  • salt to taste

Directions

  • Mix all the above ingredients. Serve with tortilla chips