The Most Productive Meal Menu

What is a productive meal menu, you ask? Depends on what you are trying to achieve from your food habits, but I classified this week as productive because I managed to completely clean the fridge before I embark on my trip for two days and also didn’t order in even once! Not that anything is wrong with ordering in, in fact, its one of the things I enjoy, but you know what I mean.

You will notice as you go along in the list of things I ate over the week, that the consumption of protein was not as good as I would have liked, but that’s because I was focussing on using up stuff. In general, I am critical of food wastage and my fridge is usually easier to clean before a trip because its not filled with a lot of store-bought condiments or things like that which you can’t consume in one go.

Have a look at what I ate this Monday to Friday 😀 and I am thinking of doing this again soon, when I eat more of what I wanted to and didn’t focus on fridge cleanse. This week also had a lot of other things that are not part of my usual routine. For example, it was a chill work week, so I was waking up quite late which meant a heavier breakfast & a snack type lunch. Also, a friend was staying over, so lots of rice type one pot meals instead of roti (Indian flatbread) which require more effort.

Also, I enjoy Youtube content of meal plans and such a lot, do share your food related stories in the comments as I would love those!

Don’t forget to look beyond the picture for some explanation of the meal menu :D:

I created this table in my notebook especially for this post and I am going to give you some more context if you are not an Indian & some of the words don’t make sense. First of all, my husband and I usually can’t do without three proper meals. However, in this meal menu, you would notice two lunches as just chai (Indian milk tea) and something to munch on. As I already mentioned, that’s because I was waking up late and breakfast was heavier than usual. Aside this, I would like to incorporate a lot more protein and actually my other weeks are definitely better than this one in that regard.

Now, a glossary of sorts 😀 –

Roti is nothing but the staple Indian basic flatbread, I usually use multigrain flour for this, but its traditionally meant to be whole wheat.

Chawal is nothing but plain boiled white rice.

Chai is Indian milky tea, which some people call as masala tea, but just so you know, I hate masalas in Chai. Only ginger and tulsi (holy basil) for me.

Idli is steamed rice cakes, traditionally made in South India.

Sambar is a vegetable stew that goes well with Idlis.

Poha is cooked rice flakes, and I would say its an acquired taste, but its a staple in our home, especially because its filling but not as carbs heavy as bread and also because we make it with matar or green peas always, which are high protein.

Gobhi is cauliflower & paratha is a heavier Indian flatbread. So, Gobhi paratha is an Indian flatbread stuffed with cauliflower and then fried with ghee (clarified butter), again a winter delicacy but this is one of my husband’s favorite treat so its a regular with us.

Methi is fenugreek leaves, which is a gift of winters in India and both of us love it.

342 | Easy Recipes 101 | #2 My Sandwich Recipe

If organising thoughts are an effort, at least I can post a recipe. I love the idea of having all my favorite recipes over here. The best part about this one is that its a favorite among many. Friends & family (even people who aren’t big on sandwiches) love this.

I don’t remember a time when I didn’t love sandwiches but the key is that its the homemade sandwiches! My mom used to feed me a basic one by slathering butter (one of my most favorite things on Earth, so she made sure to put a lot :*) followed by slices of cucumber & tomato with some salt & pepper. This is ultimate comfort food for me, but I realize now that I haven’t had it in a long while! Then, the Bombay sandwich – oh God! how I love it. I find the typical grilled sandwiches at cafes a bit average. Still, this recipe is of a grilled version but, but, it has all the feels of a no-fuss ghar ka (homemade) sandwich. Do try it once! (I’ll also update the pictures of this sometime later on this post).

Considering sandwich is a very simple thing, I wouldn’t call it the easiest sandwich recipe. It does require a bit of an effort for a sandwich but still not much. Let me get right into it.

What you’ll need:

1. Carrot – thin strips/julienned
2. Capsicum – thin strips {Edit: Lately, I have realized a lot of people do not like Capsicum also :P, so take whatever you want, the hero is anyway the 5th ingredient :P)
3. Onion – thin strips (optional, depending on whether you like onions)
4. Bread
5. Paneer (Indian Cottage Cheese – you can replace it with any cheese if you don’t have Paneer, but tastes best with Paneer)
6. Salt & Black Pepper
7. Oil – preferably Olive oil – you need a tablespoon or more depending on your quantity of the veggies, you have to saute the veggies in the oil
8. Ketchup
9. Ghee/Butter
10. Sandwich Griller (Yeah 😛 it doesn’t taste as good if just toasted on a pan)

Steps:

1. Pour your oil in a pan, let it heat for about half a minute.

2. Dump your veggies into the oil one by one in this order – Onion > Carrot > Capsicum. Onion need to just start turning translucent when you add carrot. When you see the carrot is a bit cooked and doesn’t feel totally raw, add capsicum. When that is also cooked a bit, add salt & pepper as per taste. Switch off the flame. The idea is to cook the veggies a bit, but most of their crunch still retained.

3. Now its time to assemble. Take your bread, slather some ketchup on it, put the veggie mix.

4. Now comes the best part. Cut out a slice of paneer and top it on the veggie mix. If you are using any cheese, put a slice of that or grated cheese if that’s what you have). Add salt & pepper again if you wish, I usually don’t.

5. Cover with another slice of bread.

6. Put a bit of ghee or butter or oil on the outsides of both your bread slices and put it in the griller.

7. Grill for as grilled as you typically like a sandwich.

8. Enjoy!

Do let me know if you end up trying it, especially with Paneer.

37 | Easy Recipes 101 | #1 Dahi Aloo Sabzi

I see a lot of recipes on the internet which mention that most of the things needed must already be in your pantry. Well, when that’s not the case, I feel disappointed. More like, duped. Haha, I know its nobody’s fault, but you get what I mean right? Sometimes the recipe is more work than you expected and then the enthusiasm for something quick but delicious goes off!

I hope that’s not the case with this one. Its fairly easy and as all recipes must say: you have mostly everything in your pantry already. 😛 Its my flatmate’s recipe and is really one of the quickest and filling things out there. Only issue is that only those people who like tart-y kind of food will like this. The best part? Since you can adjust the yogurt as per your taste, you can increase it for that extra protein and I usually reduce my number of chapatis to one with this dish to make it a low carb meal, because it already has potatoes for carbs. You can skip chapati as well if that’s your thing!

Oh, also, do let me know how you like this recipe segment on the blog which I was excited to start after this post. 🙂 I have jotted down a couple of recipes previously on the blog, and I loved doing that, so here’s bringing it back!

Things you will need (for 2 servings/bowlfuls):

1. Boiled potatoes cut into cubes – 2 medium

2. Curd/Yogurt – as per taste, you will be putting it post potatoes, so you can choose how much you want to “cover” the potatoes, like, thick gravy or thin (guys, I will always be like this with measurements 😦 )

3. Kasuri Methi (Dried fenugreek leaves) – as per taste (This is the only ingredient which is slightly fancier and not everybody may have in their kitchen but mostly do :P)

4. Cooking Oil – 1.5 to 2 tablespoons

5. Jeera (Cumin Seeds)

6. Red Chilly Powder

7. Black Chilly Powder (Not necessary)

8. Coriander Powder

9. Turmeric Powder

10. Amchur (Mango Powder & Not Necessary)

11. Garam Masala (Not Necessary)

12. Salt

*All spices as per taste

How To:

1. Put oil in a pan and wait for it to heat up for around a minute. Heat should be medium or medium-low.

2. Add jeera and let it crackle.

3. To this, add the cubed boiled potatoes.

4. Add all spices except no 3, 10 and 11 mentioned above. Add them as per your taste & if you are just starting with cooking, half a teaspoon each for all these should do for 2 potatoes. You can taste once the dish is ready if you want to increase anything.

5. Mix everything so that potatoes are well coated with the spices.

6. Start adding kasuri methi to the pan. Again, you can decide how much based on the coverage you are getting on the potatoes, I feel 2 or 3 tablespoons maximum. A lot of people find it bitter when quantity is a bit too much, so you might want to start with little.

7. Now, turn the heat to low. Start adding yogurt/curd and stirring simultaneously so that curd doesn’t split a lot. For how much curd to add, go to point 2 in the ‘Things you will need’ section.

8. At this point, add amchur and garam masala if you have those. Again, as per taste or half a teaspoon each and give a good mix to the pan.

9. Taste the recipe to adjust for salt etc.

That’s it really! Do try this out once at least. Only thing remaining for me is to make Rahul taste this, who loves my regular yogurt sabzi (will post that someday). I am not a big fan of that one, but if he ends up loving this version, then it will be a win-win as I love this one!