Whole Green lentils (whole green mung dal) with cilantro and mint. 

Whole Green Lentils | The Novice Housewife

I was a picky eater growing up. The only lentil dish I would eat was maa ki dal – a lighter version of the popular dal makhani. My mom tried her best to make me eat more varieties but I just wouldn’t. She had a tough time cooking for me – rajma chawal, aloo parantha, ande ki bhurji (indian scrambled eggs), bhindi
(okra), dal makhani, cholle bhature made 90% of my Indian food diet. Anything else generally met with a lot of resistance.

So while I have been experimental with my cooking and baking, I have been pretty restrictive with Indian cooking, focusing mainly on stuff that I have grown up eating. The only lentils I generally cook are urad saboot (whole unskinned black lentils that I use in my dal makhani recipe) and toovar dal (yellow pigeon pea). Toovar dal only made an appearance in my diet post marriage since V, being from UP, is a big fan of it.

Whole Green Lentils | The Novice Housewife

When my mom was here she used the other lentils that were in my pantry and made different dals for us and both of us really enjoyed. And I realized I should start including them in our diet more.

The other day when I was menu planning, I came across this recipe for whole green lentils with cilantro and mint in Madhur Jaffrey’s Quick and Easy Indian cooking . Although not the most attractive looking dish, it definitely is tasty and a perfect healthy side for your indian meals. You can also make it a little more watery and have it as a lentil soup. I served it with indian flat breads and my favorite achaari paneer recipe.

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Chicken Fajita Quinoa Bowl | The Novice Housewife
The Chicken Fajita Quinoa bowl that I am sharing today is adapted from What’s Gaby Cooking’s Chicken Fajita recipe.

I have only recently joined the snapchat bandwagon. I am yet to post anything but for now I am enjoying all the BTS my favorite photographers post on snapchat. (Stalking has become so easy thanks to social media.)

One of the first few people I started following on snapchat was What’s Gaby Cooking. On one of her Friday snap episodes, she showed how to make Poblano Chicken Fajitas. She made it look so quick and easy that I had to try them for myself.

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Turmeric Milk | The Novice Housewife

Spices are what make Indian cooking. Besides giving flavor to Indian dishes, spices carry a lot of antiseptic properties and the reason why they are used in a lot of Ayurvedic medications. While I love adding ajjwain (carom seeds) in the pastry I use for samosa, ajjwain is also perfect for upset stomachs. When mixed with water and boiled, it works as a great remedy for gastritis. Cinnamon is great for cinnamon rolls, but it is also a great anti-oxidant, is anti bacterial, controls blood sugar and has anti-cancer properties.

The award for the most multi-purpose spice though, at least in my dictionary, has to be given to turmeric, or what we Indians call haldi. Besides being a part of most of the Indian dishes we cook, turmeric is also a great healing spice. The anti-inflammatory elements we have always known about for ages, are starting to make rounds with foodies. The spice is trending online right now and is being predicted “super food of the year”.

And rightly so.

Turmeric Milk | The Novice Housewife

Turmeric, which has been used medicinally for over 4,000 years in India, is excellent for arthritis, the skin, digestion, our immune system, and cancer. A recent article by Time of India, mentioned that India’s premier medical institution, AIIMS is now testing alternative therapy that uses turmeric as a treatment for epilepsy.

It’s rich with anti-oxidants, which is why it’s been part of the beauty rituals of Indian women for years now. When I got married, like all other brides-to-be, my skin was rubbed with a mixture of haldi and besan (gram flour). This mixture of haldi and gram flour, results in a clearer, brighter skin and lends the bride-to-be to the perfect glow.  Turmeric is an effective treatment for dark circles too. Mix turmeric with buttermilk and apply on your face. Wash, repeat and be amazed. For acne free glowing skin, use this treatment by Farah D for your face.

And while turmeric is excellent as a topical treatment, its real benefits shine when you consume it. So today as part of Garam Masala Tuesdays, I am sharing a recipe for turmeric milk/ haldi doodh. It’s so easy that I kind of feel like I am cheating by calling it a recipe. You can’t call two steps a recipe- can you? Recipe or not, this turmeric drink is a gold mine of health benefits.

The only strife I have with turmeric is that my ladles, white utensils and cloths turn yellow on contact. Recently though I learnt that putting turmeric stained cloth out in the sun for a few hours will remove the stain. Problem solved.

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