Thursday, June 15, 2017

Pressure cooker pasta

This is one of our favorite lunch box recipes. The type of pasta, the sauce, the veggies that go into it - these change from one time to the next, but our love for this dish doesn't diminish no matter what avatar it takes.

What you need:
Pasta - 1 cup
Onion - 1 small, chopped fine
Tomato - 1, chopped fine
Capsicum - 1/4 cup, chopped fine
Pasta sauce - 1/2 cup + more, if desired
Butter - 2 tbsp
Italian seasoning
Grated cheese

In a pressure cooker, heat 2 tbsp. of butter. Add pepper corns followed by onions. Saute till they start to brown. Add tomato and capsicum. Saute well. Add the pasta, pasta sauce, salt and just enough water to cover the pasta. Cook till one whistle. Then reduce the flame and cook for another 3-4 minutes. When the pressure settles, add Italian seasoning, grate cheese and more pasta sauce if desired. Stir well. Serve hot.

This is my third post for BM#77 under the theme Healthy lunch box recipes.
Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Ven Pongal

Growing up, I wasn't very fond of Pongal - mostly because it was only made once a year in my home - typically during the Tamil harvest festival of Pongal. However, the ease of making it and the fact that paired with a good gothsu and chutney, it is a complete meal in itself, has made me rethink my opinion of this humble dish. Though it is considered a breakfast dish, whenever I make it, I make a little extra so that I can carry it in my lunch box.

What you need:
Rice - 1 cup
Split moong dal - 1/2 cup
Water - 5 cups
Ginger -  a small piece, julienned
Peppercorns - 1 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Curry leaves - a few
Ghee - 3 tsp
Cashew - a few (optional)
Salt - to taste

Wash the rice and dal well to remove starch. Add water, salt and ginger to it and cook on a medium flame in a pressure cooker until one whistle. Reduce the flame to low and cook for another 5 minutes.
Switch off the flame and set aside. In  a separate kadai, heat ghee. Coarsely crush the pepper and cumin. Toast the cashews in ghee until they turn reddish. Add the curry leaves and crushed spices. Saute and switch off the flame.
Once the pressure settles, open the pressure cooker and mix in the ingredients in the kadai. The pongal should not be too dry. It should be mushy and well cooked. If you feel that it is dry, add some hot water and stir.
Serve hot with chutney.

This is my second post for BM#77 under the theme healthy lunch box recipes.
Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM

Monday, June 12, 2017

Quick Veggie Sandwich

Sandwiches are some of the easiest lunches to put together. With a good, hearty bread on hand,, there's nothing to not like about a sandwich. To me, a good sandwich is one that doesn't get soggy in the lunch box. I've found that a layer of thick dips like hummus/guacamole usually keeps the liquid from the vegetables from seeping into the bread and making it soggy. This sandwich is one that I often pack for myself on week days to work. This is a highly adaptable recipe, and you can use any choice of fillings as per your taste.

What you need:
Bread (I love tomato basil bread and that's what I've used)
Vegetables (I've used, red onions, tomatoes and cucumber) -sliced into thin rounds
Grated cheese (I've used white cheddar)

Spread a thick layer of guacamole on one slice of bread. Top it with vegetables and grated cheese. Close with another slice of bread and if you like, slice it into half.

A week day lunch cannot get simpler than that, can it?

This is my first entry for Week 2 of Blogging Marathon #77, under the theme Healthy Weekday lunches.
Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM