Tori/ Dudhi Muthias (Zucchini/Bottle Gourd Cakes)

Muthias are one of my favorite Gujarati snacks. They are steamed cakes made with a combination of healthy flours such as semolina, whole wheat, chickpea flour and so on combined with grated bottle gourd or zucchini. I make these all the time – it’s an acid friendly food – you just have to omit the chili from this recipe.

I learned this recipe from our family friend Neha Mazumdar who makes some of the best Muthias. This dish goes really well with a nice mint or coriander chutney. 

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Quinoa Veggie Cutlets

Here is a great kitchen sink, healthy veggie cutlet. I know in the United States – a cutlet implies a thin piece of breaded, fried meat but in India it is a mish mash of all kind of veggies and /or ground meat made into patties.  

You can substitute the veggies with what you have on hand and add ground meat if you wish. I love the addition of quinoa which makes these a complete meal. I usually serve them hot with mint chutney.  Click here for recipe.

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Very Berry Scones!

I have to say – I make kickass scones! 

I always have them handy in my freezer for the slew of scone lovers in my life. You can make these plain or with berries which adds a wonderful fruity bite to them. You can use fresh or frozen berries. Just bake them a minute or two longer if using frozen.

I love eating my scones with clotted cream (if possible) and jam. My nephews bury their scones in whipped cream. Do what you will with these scones – they are truly a favourite in our household.

Click here to print recipe.

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Spiced Roasted Sweet Potato and Yams

Roasting veggies is always my go to way of making everyday vegetables. I especially love roasting sweet potatoes and decided to add a little spicy kick to my usual recipe by adding some spices. It turned out really delicious. You can eat these as a side dish, top green salads with them or just eat hot and crispy off the pan as we do. Click here to print recipe.

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Bulgur w/ Roasted Vegetables and Lentils

I love bulgur – one of my favorite dishes is Mujadara ( a Middle Eastern lentil, onion, bulgur dish) which my dearest friend Rula Baki makes to perfection. It’s what made me fall in love with bulgur so much and now I use it all the time in my kitchen. 

Here is one of my go to dishes which combines lentils and a bunch of roasted veggies with bulgur. Its really easy and you can substitute th vegetables with anything you have in your fridge ( sweet potatoes, asparagus etc). I prefer to use a coarse grain of bulgur – my favorite one is Duru which has vermicelli in it too but you can use any kind. This dish so so versatile that it can be served alongside pretty much anything or be a meal in itself. Click here to print recipe.

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Rotis with Mint/Cilantro Gravy (Manni Sel)

Manni Sel is one of my very favorite Sindhi dishes. Sindh is a province that used to be in India before partition, but is now in Pakistan. Manni Sel is usually made with rotis or bread ( Indian bread) that is at least a day old. These rotis are soaked in a delicious cilantro and mint based gravy.

I don’t make rotis so I just use Trader Joe’s tortillas as a substitute. They work great. You could use any of your favorite tortillas or rotis in this recipe. Make sure that when you cook this dish –  you don’t put too much of the rotis in it – as it will become too dry. Keep the dish nice and gravied as the rotis tend to continue soaking the gravy long after the cooking process is done. This dish freezes really well too.

Nobody makes Manni Sel better than my best friends mother, Veena Thani does. I just love all her recipes because they are simple, really healthy and so so yummy!

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Squash Toast

This recipe is from ABC Kitchen, at one of New York City’s most beautiful stores ABC Carpet & Home.

The menu offers many seasonal dishes of which one I just could not get enough of. It was their roasted kabocha squash toast w/ fresh ricotta and apple cider vinegar”. The flavors and textures of this creation were simply divine. Thoughtfully layered with crunchy bread, salty cheese, sweet and earthy squash, topped with chili and mint – it was divinity in each bite.

I recreated this dish in my kitchen using Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s recipe and though I could not get it to taste exactly the same but it was still par excellence.

 

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You must use good quality bread and you can use any cheese from ricotta, goat cheese – I even tried it with a herbed cream cheese and it tasted so good. I would try it with butternut squash the next time around.

 

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This makes for a wonderful snack, appetizer or even a lunch dish!

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Tomato Pasta Salad

This is a great summer dish when you can get your hands on really great quality tomatoes. My mother in law Atsuko used to make this simple tomato pasta salad really often which was really refreshing and a hit with kids and adults alike.

The better the quality of your tomatoes – the better this dish will taste. You will have to adjust the quantity of tomatoes according to the type you use. I usually use heirlooms or new jersey tomatoes but you can also use super sweet cherry tomatoes, plum or Roma.

You can choose any kind of pasta though I prefer the the shorter tubular ones, farfalle or fusilli. Always use a good quality EVOO – I personally love Brightland. 

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Grilled Asparagus, Ramps, Scallions & Zucchini

It’s grilling season and as exciting as all the meats are to cook – for me there’s nothing tastier than throwing a whole lot of farm fresh veggies on the grill. This mix of seasonal greens served as a perfect accompaniment to our bbq pork. 

The fresher your vegetables, the less intervention they need. Just a brush of olive oil and some salt and pepper. I served them with a homemade ramp chimichurri but you really don’t need a sauce to go with these.  Just putting those grill marks and some char on those veggies takes them to the next level.

I chose a combination of ramps, scallions, asparagus and zucchini- as that was part of my veggie haul from Union Square GreenMarket and The Queens County Farm.

 

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Ramp Pesto Tartine

It’s ramp season and I went a little crazy at Union Square Market last week buying bunches of them. I’ve been experimenting a lot with them, adding them to this and that. I made a really nice pesto with ramps and pistachios and have been making gorgeous layered breakfast tartines with it.

I found a really good recipe by Kim Severson for a ramp pesto which can be used in several dishes.

It’s really easy to make a layered tartine – at the very least you could just do pesto, avocado and some greens on top. There are so many variations you could do – mine really depends on what I have in my fridge. I keep things like hummus, babganoush, labne, ricotta on hand and when in doubt just top any tartine with a fried egg. Use your imagination, tomatoes, cucumbers, mint – just about anything can make this even more really delicious. Also, the better the quality of bread – the better your tartine will be.

This one is with fresh ricotta, avocado, a beet puree, ramp pesto and some microgreens.

 

For the beet puree, I just roast or boil the beets till cooked, add some salt, pepper and olive oil to it and puree in a food processor until the desired texture is reached.

Just look at the beauty!

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