Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Eggless Almond Flour Scones(Grain & Sugar free)

Almond Flour is a blessing for people on a gluten free and grain free diet. Even though the texture of the baked goods can't be compared with the  one's made out of regular refined flour or wheat flour. I feel the taste is incomparable with a nutty flavor and taste. Best of all too good for your body with high protein and low carbohydrate. I made these scones  for a evening snack and we had a few right away as they do taste the best when taken fresh out of the oven.

Preparation Time - 5-10 Minutes

Cooking Time - 10-15 Minutes

Serves - Makes 8 Scones


Almond Flour - 1 Cup

Clarified Butter - 1 Tbsp(Ghee) (If you increase this quantity cut down the quantity of water)

Xylitol - 2 Tbsp or more to taste(You can use maple syrup but cut down on the water and add 1/2 Tsp of baking soda)

Powdered Chia - 1 1/2 Tbsp

Vanilla extract - 1/2 Tsp

Salt - 1/8 Tsp


Chopped Pecans - 1 Tbsp

Raisins or Cranberries - 1 Tbsp(Cranberries taste much better than raisin . Chocolate chips, chopped dates, apricots, dried cherries options are unlimited)


1) Combine Almond flour, Xylitol, salt, powdered chia,  well with your hands.

2) To this add pecans, raisins, melted clarified butter, vanilla extract and add water little by little kneading this into a stiff dough.

3) Preheat oven to 375 Degrees Fahrenheit and line a cookie tray with parchment paper.

4) Make a circle and flatten them with your hand slice them across and make 8 parts out of each circle using a pizza cutter and them arrange each of the scone with enough spacing between and bake for 10-15 Minutes till the top browns.

5) Cool them in a wire rack for few minutes 5 to 10 minutes and serve them warm with butter, fruit preserves or as it is.

Note - You can substitute Xylitol with maple syrup and if using maple syrup cut down the water and also add half tsp of baking soda.


This goes straight to Priya's(Now Serving) fast food not fat food event.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Ragi(Finger Millet) & Besan(Split Chick Pea Flour) Poori

Eliminating gluten from diet is a big thing, one has to miss out so many delicious dishes like Poori, Roti (Flat Bread), Fluffy cakes. But when on such kind of diet, one has to be very creative and come up with alternate for all these simple pleasures. This poori is one such thing, which I made a few months back. I wouldn't say it was soft, fantastic and fluffy. But if you on a no gluten diet, this is worth a try.  I normally restrain from fried foods and do it very occasionally, not because of any fat restrictions. Our only restrictions are carb and sugar, but when you fry foods most of the nutrients are lost. Coconut oil and ghee (clarified butter) or butter are only oils that are stable at high temperatures and don't turn into toxin and are good for frying. Indeed they are expensive and that is another reason, I shy away from frying and do it once in couple of months.

Preparation Time - 10 Minutes

Cooking Time - 20 Minutes

Serves - 4 to 6 (Depending on the size)


Ragi Flour - 1/2 Cup

Besan(Split Chick Pea) flour - 1/2 Cup

Ajwain (Bishop weed) - 1/4 Tsp

Salt - 1/2 Tsp or to taste


Coconut Oil for deep frying


1) Combine the ragi flour, besan, ajwain and salt.

2) Heat a wide mouthed pan and add coconut oil for frying and keep this in medium heat.

3) Slowly add water little by little and combine to make a stiff dough.

4) Pinch out four to 6 equal sized balls.

5) Press it slightly and dust it with little flour and keep on the palm of one hand and using another hand slightly keep pressing in all the sides till you get a thin circular shape.

6) Now put it in the hot oil and fry till one side is well cooked and using a slotted ladle turn to the other side and after that is also cooked, drain the excess oil and place it in paper towel covered colander.

7) Serve this hot with the side dish of your choice and enjoy. I served this with mung dal(bean), palak(spinach) & yogurt

Event Participation

1)  This low carb and high protein healthy Poori's goes to Fast Food not Fat Food event by Priya of Nowserving.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Vegan Banana Oat, Nuts & Cranberry Bar

Do you love to snack on granola bars and do you buy then often at the stores? Then this recipe is for you. Very easy to make and tastes so delicious without any additives of any kind. A very forgiving recipe and you can come up with any number of combinations. Combine all the ingredients, bake them, wrap them and take them.  I have this recipe for a long time with me and don't even remember where I came across it. But I have baked these bars lot of times and this sure is a no fail recipe.

Preparation Time - 10 Minutes

Cooking Time - 30-40 Minutes

Serves - 18 Bars (Makes 12 to 18 Depending on the bar size)


Old Fashioned Oats - 1 1/2 Cups

Bananas - 2 (Ripe & Medium sized)

Powdered Chia - 2 Tbsp

Maple Syrup - 1/2 Cup

Almond Milk - 1/4 Cup

Oil - 1/4 Cup

Chopped Nuts & Cranberries - 3/4 Cup ( Cashews, Pistachio & dried Cranberry)

Grated Coconut - 1/2 Cup

Baking Powder - 1/2 Tsp

Salt - 1/4 Tsp

Cinnamon Powder - 1/2 Tsp or Vanilla Extract - 1 Tsp


1) Combine Oats, Oat Flour, Baking Powder, Salt & Cinnamon powder, chia powder, grated coconut, nuts and cranberries in a widemouthed bowl.

2) Preheat an oven to 350 Degrees Fahrenheit and like a 8 inch baking tray with parchment paper.

3) Mash the banana with a potato masher and to this add Oil, Maple Syrup and almond milk and combine well.

4) Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the wet ingredients to it. Combine thoroughly and transfer the content to the baking tray, take a handful of sliced almonds and spread evenly on the top and bake for 30-40 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

5) Cool in a wire rack and then slice & enjoy.

These bars were baked quite often in my kitchen a year back. We have kind of moved out of grains like Wheat, Oats and Barley with Gluten. So even though they are quite delicious, I no longer bake them. Instead of these I go for Nut based bars. But you will still continue to see lot of recipes with Wheat and Oats because I have quite a few of them sitting in my drafts for more than a year. 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Grated Raw Banana Curry(Vazhaikkai Podimas)

Bananas are one of our best sources of potassium, an essential mineral for maintaining normal blood pressure and heart function. The potassium found in bananas may also help to promote bone health. Potassium may counteract the increased urinary calcium loss caused by the high-salt diets, thus helping to prevent bones from thinning out at a fast rate. But one thing that needs to be remembered about banana is they are high in carbohydrates. So if you are on a low carb diet, plan your meal remembering the fact that banana is a significant carbohydrate source.

This is a very easy and traditional curry made in our home. Steam it, peel it, grate it, saute it, spice it. The curry is ready in few minutes. Try it out and let me know how you liked it.

Preparation Time - 25 Minutes

Cooking Time - 10 Minutes

Serves - 2


Raw Green Banana - 2

Salt - 1 Tsp or to taste

Coconut Oil - 2 Tsp

Mustard Seeds - 1/2 Tsp

Split Urad Dal - 1 Tsp

Asafoetida - pinch

Curry leaves - few

Curry Powder - 1 Tsp or to taste

Grated Coconut - 2 Tbsp


1) Wash, cut and steam the raw banana for 10 to 15 minutes till they are slightly tender. (You should be able to remove the peel).

2) Rinse it in cold water and slightly cool and then remove the peel.

3) After the bananas are cold to handle, using a vegetable grater, grate them and keep them aside.

4) Heat a pan, add a tsp of oil and once the oil is hot, add mustard seeds. After the mustard seeds stop spluttering, add asafoetida, urad dal. Once the urad dal is slightly brown, add the curry leaves, grated raw banana, salt and curry powder and saute for few minutes.

5) Add the grated coconut, leave it in heat for 2-3 minutes and switch off and serve.

Note - You can add dry red chili also when tempering.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Eggless Whole Wheat Black Forest Cake

  Black Forest cake consists of several layers of chocolate cake, with whipped cream and cherries between each layer. Then the cake is decorated with additional whipped cream, maraschino cherries, and chocolate shavings.

 I made this Black Forest Cake exactly a year before and wanted to make it with Whole Wheat and with no refined sugar and with minimally processed ingredients without any additives.  I decided to make two layers of Whole Wheat Chocolate Cake then fill the layers, sides and top with Heavy Cream whipped with Xylitol. The toughest part was to find cherries, because it wasn't in season and the cherry pie filling or canned cherries all had high fructose corn syrup which I don't buy and was finally able to get hold of the Tillen Farms brand which had whole cherries in water and sugar. This is a very easy to make cake and is absolutely delicious, well worth the effort.

Preparation Time - 30 Minutes

Cooking Time - 30 Minutes

Serves - Makes 2 9 inch layer cake

The recipe will be for 3 steps making the cake, prepare the cherry filling and the whipped cream icing.

Ingredients for the Cake

White Whole Wheat Flour - 2 Cup
Whole Wheat Pastry Flour - 1 Cup
Baking Soda - 2 Tsp
Salt - 1/4 Tsp
Unsweetened Cocoa Powder - 1/2 Cup
Vanilla Extract - 2 Tsp
Unflavoured Oil like Sunflower oil - 2/3 Cup
Raw sugar - 1 1/2 Cup
Warm water - 2 Cups
Apple Cide Vinegar - 2 Tbsp

For the cake please look into the Basic Chocolate Cake Recipe and bake two 9" inch cake and cool them in a wire rack and set them aside.

Ingredients for the Whipped Cream Frosting

Heavy Cream - 1 Pint(Increase this if you want a thick layer of frosting)
Xylitol - 1/4 Cup (Adjust this to your sweetness level)
Clear Vanilla extract - 1 Tsp

1) Beat the heavy cream till stiff peaks. (This will take at least 10 to 15 Minutes)

2) Add the vanilla extract and Xylitol to your sweetness and beat once to combine nicely.

3) Take the frosting and apply it one side of each cake and set them aside.

Ingredients for the Cherry Filling

All Natural Raspberry Fruit Preserves - 18 oz (Sweetened with fruit juices and no added sugar)
Merry Maraschino Cherries - 14 oz
Water - 1/4 Cup

1) Drain and rinse the cherries. Keep aside few cherries for decorating the top.

2) Add the fruit preserves, water  to a blender and blend till smooth, to this add the halved cherries and simmer for 5 minutes and let this cool.

3) Take this simmered fruit preserve with cherries and spread evenly to one of the cake layered with whipped cream frosting.

4) Now take the other cake spread with whipped cream frosting and place it gently on top of the cake layered with whipped cream and cherry preserves.

5) Now take the rest of the whipped cream and using a spatula spread on the top and the sides.

Finishing Touches

1/4 of 72% Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Bar  grated into chocolate shavings.

1) Take handful of these chocolate shavings and slowly put on the top and the side portions, decorate the top with cherries.

2) Refrigerate overnight and serve. The xylitol in the whipping cream, gives an ice cream effect to the whole black forest cake.

Event Participation

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Baked Spiced Almonds

Thinking of ways to include more protein in your diet. Think Almonds. Almonds are concentrated in protein. A quarter-cup contains 7.62 grams-more protein than is provided by the typical egg, which contains 5.54 grams. This is an easy breezy snack, good to eat, great for health, low in sugar and high in protein. 

This is another very interesting recipe I found in the Eating well Magazine. If you are craving for a spicy, crunchy snack, try this quick and easy snack.

Preparation Time - None
Cooking Time - 30 Minutes
Serves - 4


Whole Almonds - 2 Cups

Coconut Oil - 2 Teaspoon

Curry powder - 2 Tsp

Salt - 1/2 Tsp

Red Chili Powder/Cayenne Pepper - 1/4 Tsp or to taste


1) Preheat Oven to 300 Degrees Fahrenheit.

2) Line a baking tray with parchment paper.

3) Combine Almonds, Oil, Curry powder, Salt and Red Chili powder and toss to coat well.

4) Bake for 25 Minutes until lightly toasted.

5) Transfer to a wide mouthed bowl and cool.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ragi Puttu & Kadala Curry(Steamed Finger Millet with Brown Chick Pea Curry)

Ragi(Finger Millet), Quinoa all these are Pseudo grains meaning not actual grains like Wheat, Rice, Corn etc but seeds which are actually used as grains. If you are a vegetarian and looking for a gluten free and trying to eliminate grains like Wheat, Corn and Rice, these pseudo grains are a sure savior. Finger millet is a very good source of calcium and a good source of fiber and complex carbohydrates. This along with the protein rich Brown Chick Pea(the protein content in this is much more than the white variety), would make a perfect balanced break fast or lunch. 

Kadalai Curry


Kala Channa(Brown Chick Pea) - 1 Cup
Onion - 1 (chopped)
Tomato - 1 (chopped)
Grated Coconut - 1/3 Cup
Garlic - 3 Cloves
Ginger - 1 inch piece
Masala/Spices  - (1 Tsp Coriander seeds, 1/4 Tsp cumin seeds, 1-2 dry red chili, 1/2 Tsp Fennel seeds, 1 Clove, 1 inch piece of Indian Cinnamon Stick, 1/4 Tsp Black Whole Pepper Corns)
Curry Leaves - few for seasoning
Coconut Oil -2 Tsp
Mustard Seeds - 1/2 Tsp
Green Chili -2 
Salt - 1 1/2 Tsp or to taste
Turmeric powder - 1/2 Tsp


1) Soak the brown chick pea overnight and pressure cook with enough water to cover its surface by adding salt and split green chili for 3 to 4 whistles.

2) Heat a pan and add 1/2 tsp oil and roast the grated coconut and keep it aside.

3) Heat the pan once again and add 1/2 tsp oil and to this add the chopped garlic cloves, once this browns nicely add all the ingredients mentioned next to masala  in the ingredient list and once they slightly brown, add the onion and ginger as well and saute for a few minutes till it becomes translucent, now add the chopped tomato and saute till the tomato becomes tender. Keep this aside to cool.

4) Now grind the cooled coconut, onion & tomato mixture along with masala and add a handful of cooked chick pea (if you want a thick gravy) into a fine paste.

5) Heat a pan, add the remaining oil and add the mustard seeds. Once these seeds stop spluttering, add the curry leaves and the ground paste. To this add the turmeric powder, remaining salt and saute for 3-4 minutes.

6) Now to this add the cooked chick pea along with the water and simmer for another 5 minutes and then switch off. Add more water and salt at this stage based on your preference.

Ragi Puttu


Sprouted and Roasted Ragi flour - 2 Cups

Water - 1/2 Cup

Salt - 1 Tsp or to taste

Grated Coconut - 3/4 Cup

Warm Coconut Oil - 1 Tbsp


1) Warm the water slightly. Add salt, grated coconut and warm coconut oil to the ragi flour and set it aside.

2) To this slowly add the water little by little and combining it nicely, the flour should be slightly wet and damp enough for steaming. If you take a small amount of flour in your hands and give a slight pressure and set it down, the flour should be able to hold it's shape. If not add little more water and try. (Do not pour a lot of water at the same time,  since you are not trying to form a dough).

3) I don't a have a puttu maker, so I greased a idli plate and took the ragi mixture in a small greased bowl and  pressed it evenly and then inverted it in each of the idli mold and steam it for 10 minutes.

4) Serve hot with kadala curry.

Event Participation

This Olan goes straight to the Kerala Kitchen.

Monday, March 7, 2011

No Bake Cashew Bar(Grain Free & Sugar Free)

I love all kinds of bars, baked, no bake. The best thing about these bars are you can put in any number of things, without any rules, bake them or refrigerate them. Cut them into bite size pieces and have one whenever you crave for anything sweet. This is a very easy to do recipe and very healthy too, with protein rich cashew and omega-3 and omega-6 rich chia and sweetened with the no cavity causing xylitol.

This bar recipe, I saw in a book in Barnes and Noble long time back. I don't even remember the book name and I modified it a lot based on what I had in hand. This is a very versatile recipe and you can substitute this with any nuts or nut butter you have in hand.

Preparation Time - 10 Minutes

Cooking Time - 2 Minutes

Serves - Makes around 2 dozen bars


Raw Cashews - 2 Cups

Powdered Chia - (1/2 Cup -2 Tbsp)

Grated Coconut - 1/2 Cup

Cashew Butter - 1/2 Cup

Coconut Oil or Clarified Butter(Ghee) - 1/4 Cup (Either one of them will work, if you don't like the flavor of coconut oil, substitute with Clarified butter)

Xylitol - 2 Tbsp or to taste

Toasted Sesame seeds - 2 Tbsp

Toasted Chia Seed - 2 Tbsp

Salt - 1/4 Tsp

Vanilla extract - 1/2 Tsp


1) Take the cashews and make a coarse meal by placing that in a food processor.

2) To this add the powdered chia, grated coconut, cashew butter, xylitol,, salt and process for a few seconds.

3) Melt the oil/ghee(clarified butter - cassein free) till it is all liquid and switch off.

4) Grease a baking pan with few drops of oil/ghee and transfer the remaining ghee transfer it to the proccessed cashew, xylitol mixture. Add the toasted chia seeds, sesame seeds and you should be able to able to make a dough out of this mixture.

5) Using your hands take this dough and press evenly and firmly in the pan and refrigerate for 2  to 3 hours.

6) Once the bars harden, slice them and serve and remaining store them in the refrigerator. Keeps good in a refrigerator for atleast a week.

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