Savoury

15-minute Healthy Veggie Soup


Now who does not love those recipes that can be thrown together in under 15 minutes flat? This soup is one such recipe and is ideal for cold winter evenings when cooking a 6 course dinner is the last thing you want to do after slogging in office for the whole day.

It is actually a very good appetizer and can keep the flu, cough and cold at bay. It also works wonders for the days when you have already caught a cold, have a runny nose and want something warm and comforting to fill your tummy.

The fresh and crunchy winter veggies make the soup taste divine yet is super healthy so you can enjoy it without any guilt whatsoever. It is practically fat free except for one teaspoon of olive oil.


I have used very few spices in this recipe so that the intrinsic flavour of the raw ingredients is retained and the spices not only enhance the taste but are super healthy by themselves as well.


Bay leaf is used in many Indian recipes and I just love its mild flavour. Our weekend special Masala Chai at home is made extra special with the awesome flavour of Bay leaf. It also somehow makes the viscosity of the milk based tea just right and we just swoon over our delicious cup of masala chai. https://www.healthline.com/health/5-possible-uses-for-bay-leaf


Black Pepper is a super-spice and hundreds of years ago, traders considered black pepper the king of spices calling it “black gold,” It is a powerhouse of health benefits and helps to add a distinct earthy and balanced hotness to any dish.
https://www.healthline.com/health/black-pepper-king-of-spices


Chopping up the vegetables is the only time taking part of this recipe. That will take around 5 to 6 minutes and the cooking time is around 10 minutes. So overall this is a super quick recipe resulting in an extremely healthy and tasty soup!

Preparation time: 6minutes.
Cooking Time: 8 to 10 minutes
Ingredients:
1. 1 Orange carrot
2. 8 to 10 French Beans
3. 1 Red Onion
4. 4 to 5 Garlic cloves
5. 7 to 8 Green Onion leaf
6. 2 Green Chilli
7. 1 sprig of Fresh Coriander Leaves.
8. 1 Bay Leaf
9. 5 to 6 Walnuts
10. Freshly Crushed Black Pepper (To taste)
11. Salt (To taste)
12. ½ tsp dry mango powder
13. 1 tsp Olive oil
14. 5 to 6cups water
15. 1 cup chicken Stock(Optional)

Method:
• Start by dicing the carrots and chopping all the vegetables mentioned in the ingredients except the garlic.


• Heat up the water and keep it ready to use.
• In a sauce pan put in the olive oil and add the bay leaf.
• Add the garlic cloves and fry till light golden.


• Next add the sliced onions and fry till translucent.
• Add the carrots and the beans and stir.
• Sautee the vegetables for a minute or so and then add the hot water or the stock.
• Add coarsely chopped walnuts, dry mango powder ,salt and freshly crushed black pepper according to your taste.
• Bring the soup to a boil for 3 to 4 minutes and then add the chopped green onion leaves as if they are added near the end they will maintain their crunch.
• Check the salt and add some more black pepper if necessary.
• Garnish with slit green chillis and fresh coriander leaves.
• Serve hot with bread sticks or croutons or just as it is.

P.S
1.This quantity will make around two standard soup bowls full of soup.
2.You can add any vegetables of your choice as this is a very customisable recipe.
3. If you want an added protein kick throw in some shredded boiled chicken and you will have a wonderful chicken soup.
4. The walnuts give a great texture to this soup and I just loved their taste together with the vegetables.

Baked Goodies · Desserts

Blueberry White Chocolate Muffins

It was the countdown week before Christmas and I was playing with flavor combinations in my head to try out for muffins. I wanted to make these muffins in my brand new fun shaped silicon muffin moulds bought from one of my after office New Market sprees.

My husband loves blueberries and bought a packet of dried blueberries online to surprise him. Then there are these white chocolate and dark chocolate buttons available online which I love to use in my baked goodies. Voila! My blueberry white chocolate muffin recipe was born.

In my earlier days of baking when I had just discovered this wonderful hobby, I was in school and was intoxicated on the tales and stories of Enid Blyton. Thanks to her delicious description of food and an over-active imagination I was fascinated with exotic ingredients like berries, high-quality chocolate, fancy baking tools etc.

I was very wistful as these ingredients were not at all available in Kolkata in those days and I dreamt of the day when I would be able to bake with them. My days of yearning are finally over now! With the opening of the world of online shopping, I feel all the ingredients that I dreamt of being only one click away. This gives me a sense of immense peace and happiness.

One fine winter evening after returning from work, I decided I will bake the much awaited blubbery muffins today. So I began to gather all the ingredients and started baking with a strong determination to make the loveliest blueberry muffins.

These muffins are scrumptiously golden and dotted with juicy, dark blueberries and golden white chocolate buttons. I confess they are a bit sinful as I have used some cream in the batter instead of milk. But once in a while, you can get away with these things!

Ingredients:

  1. 1 cup White Flour (100gm)
  2. ¼ cup flax seed powder (25 gm)
  3. 1 ½ tsp Baking powder
  4. ½ tsp Baking soda
  5. 3 eggs
  6. Vanilla Essence (few drops)
  7. Sugar (1/2 cup)
  8. Melted Butter 80 gm
  9. Yoghurt 2 tbsp.
  10. Cream ¼ cup
  11. Dried blueberries (15 to 20)
  12. White Chocolate buttons
  13. Mixing Bowls, mixing spoons, hand whisk/electric whisk.
  14. Silicon Muffin moulds and paper muffin cups.
  15. Oil/melted butter for greasing the muffin cups.

Method:

  • Keep all the ingredients on your work counter and all the mixing bowls, spoons, whisk etc ready.
  • Line the silicon muffin moulds with paper liners and grease them.
  • Mix the flour with the flaxseed powder, baking powder and baking soda.
  • Melt the butter.
  • Crack open the eggs in a deep bowl and mix with sugar.
  • Whip together the eggs and sugar mixture with a handheld mixer till light and frothy.
  • Add in the melted butter and vanilla essence and keep on mixing.
  • In a separate bowl take the yoghurt and with the help of a fork whip it till it becomes smooth and there are no lumps.
  • Pre-heat the oven at 180C.
  • Then when the egg mixture is frothy add in the flour mix and fold in with a spatula.
  • Add the beaten yoghurt and cream to the cake batter and mix in with the spatula.
  • Be careful not to over mix the batter but all the ingredients should be well combined.
  • Add the white chocolate buttons and the blueberries reserving a few for the topping.
  • The mixture will not be pourable.
  • With the help of a spoon put the batter into the muffin moulds. Dot the top of each muffin with the reserved blueberries and chocolate buttons.
  • Put the muffins into the preheated oven to bake for 20 minutes.
  • After 20 minutes check the centre of one of the muffins with a tooth pick. If it comes out clean, then the muffins are done. If not, then bake for 5 more minutes
  • Your scrumptiously yummy, blueberry white chocolate muffins are ready to be enjoyed with your friends and family. You can trust me that these muffins taste as good as they look!

P.S

  1. **All ovens are unique the timing might vary accordingly. So feel free to adjust the timing according to your ovens nature.
  2. The quantities that I have mentioned will make around 5 to 6 muffins.
  3. The sugar quantity can be reduced if you like your desserts on the less sweet size but the quantity of sugar I have mentioned in the recipe is optimum for this dessert.
  4. To make these muffins a bit less sinful, you can swap the white flour with whole wheat flour, the cream with skimmed milk and the white sugar with powdered jaggery/honey. But I just can’t compromise with the butter.
  5. The flaxseed powder not only gives these muffins a delicious nutty flavour but add to the health quotient of any of my baked goodies.
  6. I guess I will be coming up with a healthier version of this recipe some times soon.
  7. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask me anything about this cake in the comments section.
Baked Goodies · Savoury

Easy Yummy Savoury Muffins

Easy Yummy Savoury Muffins

I have a full time 9 to 5 job and I reserve minimum effort for breakfast as I am a zombie in the morning.

Yes…as all my friends and family know I am anything but a morning person. Whenever there has been any such situation in which I am required to get up very early mysteriously I have been spared. I guess there is a lot of power in prayers!
           Now, this healthy, savory, veggie-filled whole-wheat muffin can be made at any time of the day but somehow in my head, I was hell-bent on making it for breakfast! I pinned an egg-white and veggie healthy muffin on my recipe board for the past one year but never got around to making it.

So in my December baking spree, I decided I have to make something savory and remembered the egg white muffin recipe. To make the muffins more filling I have recreated the recipe in my way. It is a very easy recipe and other than the chopping part it takes only 10 minutes to put together. Yes! You heard me right I did say 10 minutes!
As luck would have it, my helper, Pinky was late that day and we got up late. I was running around like a headless chicken but the night before I had washed the vegetables and kept them ready to be chopped in the morning which helped a lot.

So after having our daily dose of seasonal fruits, I got together all the ingredients and my hubby was sweet enough to chop the veggies into perfectly immaculate little pieces!

To be honest I have made very few savory baked items and I was very nervous about the outcome.
So after putting the muffins into the oven for the baking fairies to perform their magic, I rushed to take my bath and get ready for office. After 25 minutes when I came into the kitchen, I found these golden muffins dotted with a rainbow of colored veggies waiting patiently in the oven to be gobbled up.

Frankly, these muffins are superbly filling, yummy, tasty, healthy and as a bonus look absolutely perfect. I am already thinking of ways in which I can change the ingredients and make a wide variety of savory breakfast muffins. They taste good by themselves or you can try some ketchup on the side as well.

Preparation time: 15 minutes**
Baking Time: 25 minutes**

Ingredients:

  1. 1 cup Whole-wheat Flour (100gm)
  2. ¼ cup flax seed powder (25 gm)
  3. 1 ½ tsp Baking powder
  4. ½ tsp Baking soda
  5. 2 Egg white + 1 whole Egg
  6. Melted Butter 100 gm (equivalent to a ¾ cup of butter cubes)
  7. Skimmed Milk 1/4 cup
  8. Spinach (8 to 9 leaves), Red Bell Pepper (1/4), Yellow Bell Pepper (1/4), Green Onion, Onion (1), Coriander Leaves (to taste).
  9. Salt and Pepper to taste
  10. Mixing Bowls, mixing spoons, cake mould/tin, hand whisk/electric whisk.
  11. Muffin mould and paper muffin cups.
  12. Oil/melted butter for greasing the muffin cups.

Method:
• I started by washing the veggies the night before and keeping them ready to be chopped in the morning.
• Then keep all the ingredients on your work counter and all the mixing bowls, spoons, whisk etc ready.
• Chop all the veggies i.e spinach, bell peppers, onion, green onion and coriander leaves into small pieces.
• Line the muffin mould with paper liners and grease them.
• Mix the whole-wheat flour with the flaxseed powder, salt, pepper, baking powder and baking soda.
• Melt the butter.
• Beat the egg whites and egg with a handheld mixer till light and frothy.
• Add in the skimmed milk, butter and keep on mixing.
• Pre-heat the oven at 180C.
• Then when the egg mixture is frothy add in the flour mix and fold in with a spatula.
• Mix in the chopped vegetables.
• The mixture will not be pourable.
• With the help of a spoon put the batter into the muffin moulds
• Put the muffins into the preheated oven to bake for 25 minutes.
• After 25 minutes check the center of one of the muffins with a tooth pick. If it comes out clean then the muffins are done.
• Your yummy, healthy, veggie muffins are ready to be gorged as a special treat for breakfast!

P.S

  1. **All ovens are unique the timing might vary accordingly. In this recipe, the vegetables tend to impart some moisture to the batter while the baking is going on. So feel free to adjust the timing according to your ovens nature.
  2. If you want you can add in some grated cheese to the batter but even without cheese, these muffins turn out pretty scrumptious.
  3. The quantities that I have mentioned will make around 6 muffins.
  4. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask me anything about this recipe in the comments section.
Baked Goodies · Desserts

Easiest Three Ingredient Cookie

Easiest Three Ingredient Cookies

I was thinking about baking some cookies for a very long time. But with the onslaught of pictures of Christmas cookies and cookie challenges on Instagram, I was very intimidated. Also, in the process of making cookies, there is an extra step which involves chilling the dough. This step really puts me off and makes me feel lazy. But drooling over all the yummy cookie pictures online, I did some extensive research on the “Science behind Making Cookies” and so this recipe was building in my head for the last few days. Anyhow, it was a weekday night and there was some raw chicken waiting in my sink to be washed and cooked into a wonderful, yummy gravy with some pureed spinach, and I suddenly decide that tonight is the night to make these cookies. You have to believe me that it took me exactly 15 minutes to get this cookie dough ready and in the fridge to chill!

My husband and my mother were like excited children when the first batch came out of the oven in all their golden loveliness. My sister has already coordinated the process of how I am going to bake the next batch of cookies and get them couriered to her! So, my friends, I will now tell you the recipe of the easiest three ingredient cookies in the world and believe me even if you are a novice in baking, these cookies will definitely turn out to be perfect. They absolutely melt in the mouth, crispy and golden pieces of heaven…….

Preparation time: 15 minutes.

Chilling Time: 30 minutes

Baking Time: 16 to 18 minutes

Ingredients:

  1. 1 ¾ cups Flour(175gm)
  2. ¾ cup powdered brown sugar(75gm)
  3. Softened Salted Butter 1 cup.(100gm)

*Chocolate Button/ Chocolate Chips

Method:

  • Start by keeping all the ingredients on your work counter and all the mixing bowls, spoons, and baking tray ready.
  • Cream together the softened butter and the powder brown sugar with a handheld mixer until it is fluffy and the colour of the butter changes. It will take you around 7 to 8 minutes at low to medium speed.
  • Now mix in the flour into the creamed butter-sugar mixture until combined and forms a dough. You might have to use your hands at some point to bring it all together, but in that case, do not forget to wash your hands well.
  • Roll the dough into 2 logs of about 1-inch diameter. Wrap each log in cling film or aluminum foil and put it into the fridge to chill for 30 minutes.
  • After waiting for 30 minutes and getting other work in the kitchen done, take out one of the dough rolls and unwrap it.
  • With a sharp knife cut the dough roll into cookies of the thickness of your choice. ¼ inch thickness was the magic number for me.
  • Pre-heat the oven to 180 C. Arrange the cookies on a baking tray with at least ½ a cm gap between them as the butter in them tends to make them spread while cooking. Bake for 16 to 18 minutes till crispy and golden.
  • If you decide to use chocolate chips, you can use the second roll of dough and cut them similarly and top them with the chocolate chip. But remember to press gently, as otherwise, the cookies will crack.
  • At 16 minutes your cookies will be baked, but they will be light in colour. If you want the golden colour you have to give the cookies 2 more minutes but under supervision.
  • When both the batches are baked, your easy, yummy, buttery, golden medallions of heaven are ready to be enjoyed with tea, coffee or just by themselves.