Eat light ... with the changing season

Since home now is our refuge and can only limit ourselves to certain exercises , we must eat light and healthy. Try to reconsider your meals , timings , portion sizes and limit your food intake in terms of number of meals.

As winter turns into spring , I seem to remember the simple but oh so delicious and heart warming meals my nanny would prepare for us .She would always be at home , waiting for us as we came back from school , from college , from work or when we would visit our homes after our marriages..Probably the first words on our lips as we entered through the door was ...'Bua ...where are you?' We knew she would always be there. Now that we are home bound , we are all missing her presence.

One of the meals she would prepare was a light Masur (red lentil) daal with radish and stuffed capsicums. Very easy to prepare and perfect for the changing season. I don't have her recipe but I tried to think of the taste and prepare these.

Bua's Masur Daal or Red Lentils with Radish

Ingredients

1 cup Red Lentil or Masur Daal

1 no. Radish , peeled and cut into rounds

1/2 tsp ginger, freshly crushed

1 no. Whole dried chilli

1 no. Bay leaf

1/2 tsp cumin seeds

1/4 tsp turmeric powder

Salt to taste

1/2 tsp jaggery powder(optional)

Mustard oil

Coriader leaves, finely chopped to garnish

To prepare:

1. Rinse and wash the Red Lentil or Masur daal very well. Put in a pressure cooker with water 1 inch above the daal .

2. Add the radish, with a few drops of oil, 1/2 tsp salt and pressure cook the daal for 3 whistles.

3. Take a kadai or wok ,add 1 tsp of oil and temper the daal with cumin seeds , dry red chilli and bay leaf.

4. Once it starts to splutter , add the boiled daal , turmeric powder , sugar , salt and ginger. Mix very well and make sure the daal is on the thicker side. You may add water to correct the consistency. Check the seasoning.

5. On medium heat , give the daal a boil for 4-5 minutes. Serve hot , garnished with coriander.

Bua's Stuffed Capsicum, as I remember it ...

Ingredients

2 nos. medium sized green peppers/ capsicum

2 nos. medium sized potatoes

1/2 no onion, finely chopped

1/2 tsp cumin seeds

1/4 tsp turmeric powder

1/4 tsp red chilli powder

A pinch of asafoetida

1/4 tsp raw mango or amchur powder

1/4 tsp garam masala

A few sprigs of coriander leaves, finely chopped

1 tblspn of oil

Salt

To Prepare:

1. Cut the Capsicums into halves , and remove the stems and remove the seeds and at dry after rinsing.

2. Boil the potatoes and mash and keep aside. Preheat the oven at 200 deg C.

3. In a pan , heat oil, and fry the cumin seeds. After a few seconds, add the onions and cook till they are translucent .

4. Stir in the turmeric powder, red chilli powder and asafoetida and mix well.

5.Then add the potatoes and saute for 2 minutes.

6. Stir in the raw mango powder and garam masala and salt.

7. Add the coriander and see that the potato mixture is well mixed.

8. Take off the fire and let it cool down.

9. Spoon the mixtures into the capsicum cups and stuff them well and oil the cups all over.

10. Bake till the capsicum are golden and wrinkled .

Serve warm with rice and daal and eat with your hands.

p.s I have not added green chillies to the recipes. You may do so if you like it a bit spicy.

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