Vegan Recipe | Suranaache Kaap |Maharashtrian style, hand cut, griddle fried crisp yam chips with semolina coating

Suranaache Kaap: Maharashtrian style, hand cut, griddle fried crisp yam chips with semolina coating

Suranaache Kaap: Maharashtrian style, hand cut, griddle fried crisp yam chips with semolina coating

A while back I saw suranaache kaap posted by Saee and it sent me down the memory lane – Aai making suranaache kaap in the month of shravan (that is when this tuber is available the best) and then trying to feed it to us (rather successfully) saying that it is fried fish! Suran also known as the elephant foot yam is a seasonal tuber consumed in many parts of India. It is most widely available in the late monsoons through winter. Yams may not be widely popular these days but it makes a lot of sense to incorporate them in our everyday diet as they are a good source of complex carbohydrates, vitamins C and B complex and minerals like potassium, copper and manganese. Yam has more fibre than standard potatoes and hence are lower in glycemic index and more slowly digested than potatoes or other refined flours and its products.

The recipe here, suranaache kaap are hand cut, griddle fried yam chips made crisp with a light semolina coating. These are low in fat and a great snacking option.

You will need:

250 g yam, peeled, sliced to about 2 cm thickness

1 piece of tamarind, dried

1.4 cup fine semolina

2 tbsp rice flour

a pinch of powdered sugar (optional)

1 tsp asafoetida (hing) powder

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1 tsp chilli powder

salt to taste

3-4 tablespoons of oil for griddle frying


  • In a bowl take the tamarind and pour about 1/4 cup boiling water over it. Keep it aside for 5 mins. Then mash the tamarind with your hand to make it pulpy and remove the string, seeds etc. Add about 1/2 tsp salt to this pulp.
  • Add this tamarind pulp water to the bowl of yam slices and steam them in a pressure cooker for 5-7 mins. Be careful not to completely cook the yam as it will them become very fragile and difficult to handle.
  • Once the yam has been steamed, remove the bowl from the pressure cooker, drain out any excess liquid. Now sprinkle the turmeric powder and red chilli powder on to the yam slices and spread it on all slices, making sure that all slices are coated with the masala.
  • Preheat the griddle/tawa on the gas.
  • In a shallow dish take the semolina, rice flour, a pinch of salt, asafoetida and pinch of sugar and mix it well. Now coat eat slice of yam with this semolina mix and fry it on the tawa adding a little bit of oil.
  • Fry on a low flame till it is golden brown and crisp.
  • Serve hot!


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The Secret to Healthy Snacking



– Snacking is an effective way to fit extra nutrients into your diet and prevent overeating at mealtimes.
– According to a study approximately 97 percent of Americans snack, getting an average of 24 percent of their calories from snacks.
– With snacking providing this much of the day’s calories, choosing healthy options is crucial.


– Don’t snack right before a meal, and only eat a snack if you are truly hungry.
– Snacking out of boredom or for other emotional reasons isn’t healthy and can lead to overeating and weight gain.
– Most snacks should be around 100 calories, but if you need to use a snack in place of a meal, eat a slightly larger snack containing about 250 calories

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Do I really need to be drinking protein powders and shakes?

The market is flooded with protein powders and supplements with tall claims of muscle gain, chiseled bodies and weight loss. A lot of times as soon as you enroll to a gym, you are convinced that only if you start taking some protein powder or shake will you be able to lose fat and build more muscle. While you do need extra protein if going in for an intensive workout, what is actually necessary is that you drink something which will help your body to replenish the electrolytes and relieve the fatigued muscle. High protein powders and isolates are also recommended for athletes, under strict medical and nutritional supervision, so that their muscles are not damaged by the strenuous physical activity and their endurance increases. But does any man or woman doing a basic workout of about 45 minutes a day need protein powder? No. Are protein powders the only way of getting good quality proteins? No.

You can easily get high quality proteins in your diet by increasing the amount of lean meat, eggs, dairy, green leafy vegetables like spinach, nuts and oilseeds (sunflower seeds, hemp) and whole grains. In fact, you can also make protein powder free, high protein shakes by blending yogurt, banana and berries. So then why would you want to pay through your nose to buy a protein powder which not only smells awful but also has a smaller shelf life? The biggest problem with consuming protein powders is that most often people end up taking more protein than prescribed in hopes that it will work its (assumed) magic faster and then that leaves them with indigestion, stomach cramps and in extreme cases it increases the load on kidneys and hence causes problems with renal function.

Need more reason to check what you are drinking post work-out? Here you go. Unlike regular protein rich foods, these protein powders are highly processed products which have plenty preservatives, genetically modified protein sources and other synthetic products like saccharin, aspartame and artificial flavors. Whey proteins can also be allergens for people who cannot digest dairy products easily. Since protein powders are considered to be supplements, there is very little regulation on the products available in the market. A recent study also reported some of these protein supplement powders to have high levels of cadmium and lead, which are toxic in nature.

Always remember, it is always better to eat or drink foods that are as natural and whole as possible and avoid commercially manufactured, synthetic products.

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Why do we overeat? Beware: It’s not just the overweight who overeat

We all know that if we overeat, we will end up being overweight. But have you ever tried to know why we overeat? Take a look at this post I had written a long time ago which is still relevant today.

Healthy Feasts

A couple of days back we saw a post from Nachiket, who had described his daily eating pattern, especially that on Monday (a day when everyone is struck with the blues!). On any given Monday, Nachiket was consuming more than 5000 kcal while his biological need was only about 2500 kcal. So how is it that he never realized that he was overeating? How is it ,that even after eating all that he was eating, he still felt envious of others whom he saw eating much more? Why were his Monday mornings, even more miserable than ever?

Let’s try and answer some of these questions.

There are two primary reasons behind overeating – biological and emotional (psychological).

The biological reasons for overeating can be as simple as too long a gap in between meals, resulting in a person overeating at the next meal time. A lot of us must have…

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When Raajas turned Three! | Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Birthday Party

Every year I keep waiting for the month of December because that’s the only time when I get to plan, like really plan, a birthday party and bake like there is no tomorrow. 20th December 2014 was no different. Raajas turned three and this time he was actually able to tell what was his favorite cartoon character – Mickey Mouse of course! With the theme sorted, I was poring over various ideas on Pinterest pinning about 100 ideas and things to do. Like always, I also ended up facing some epic fails with pinterest inspirations but whatever we did manage to do turned out good. 🙂 This birthday was special; more because we had many more friends of Raajas’ age thanks to the nursery school and park times and the birthday boy (unlike the previous years) was actually half (!)- excited about the birthday party. Of course he did start howling when we got all teenage-y and wished him happy birthday at midnight.. but well..

I have to share with you all the stuff I got to make, especially the birthday party menu and the buffet. Go ahead, take a look.

The mickey mouse cake

The mickey mouse cake

I used the recipe for the Chocolate Orange Cake to make this mickey mouse cake with orange whipped cream frosting.

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Inspired by Pinterest wall hangings, but not having that amount of patience I ended up just hanging mickey cutouts from the ceilings. But the kids and Raajas were thrilled to see ‘soo many Mickey Mouse’. 🙂


Red Velvet Cupcakes. Recipe adapted from Joy of Baking.


These chocolate spoons were a big hit as the kids were given these spoons to eat the chocolate mousse. I have to thank my friend Preeti of IsingCakes for this fab idea and the spoon moulds.


This was a simple chocolate cake covered with a vanilla bean whipped cream frosting. This number 3 cake went to his school for the birthday celebration.


The buffet table – Chicken and Veggie burgers (homemade of course), Quiche florentine, chicken and veggie samosas, bow tie baked pasta, red velvet cupcakes, chocolate mousse, cheese balls, chips and fruit juice.


Beautiful ideas on Pinterest for the party door signs, but with my limited drawing ability, I could only manage this!


And finally I proudly present the handpainted Mickey no. 3 tee shirt, my first time painting on fabric, and oh yes, the birthday boy! 😉

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Healthy Recipe | Kande Pohe

Kanda Poha

Kanda Poha

In Maharashtrian households, Kande pohe is a staple breakfast or teatime snack made from beaten rice and onions with a tempering of mustard and chillies. It is also a popular snack when eating out in Maharashtra. Each part of Maharashtra makes it in a slightly different way- while in nagpur they add plenty green chillies, in Pune they add sev (bhujia) and grated coconut, in Mumbai it is often served with a garnish of coriander and a wedge of lemon whereas in Kolhapur it is served with ‘kat’ a spicy watery curry made from red chillies, onions, garlic and dried coconut. Whatever the version, it continues to be a healthy snack which is made fresh and served hot.

Kanda Poha are also the original gluten free snack that also come with a good amount of iron, carbohydrates, some protein and fibre. The addition of lime juice on kande pohe makes the iron absorption easier. Flattened rice digests slowly and hence keeps you feeling fuller for longer. And whats more, it takes only as much time to make as any instant noodles but is way way healthier and does not contain ANY additives!

To people who are familiar with this dish, it might seem like a very mundane recipe; but if not made right it can be dry, oily, soggy, difficult to swallow. A good ‘kanda poha’ is supposed to be fluffy, moist and not oily. So here you go!

You will need:

2 cups flattened rice, thick variety (jaada poha/jaade pohe)

1 large onion, finely chopped

2 green chillies, cut into halves

1/2 tsp mustard seeds

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1/2 tsp hing (asafoetida) powder

2 tsp oil (I used sunflower oil)

Salt to taste

1/2 tsp sugar (optional)


Take the poha in a strainer and wash it under running water for about 10 seconds. Keep it aside in the strainer. Do not drain out the water thoroughly, it is alright if some water remains and its not drained dry! 🙂

In a thick bottomed pan, heat the oil, then add the mustard seeds to it. Once the seeds start sputtering, add in the hing, turmeric and green chillies. Now add the chopped onion, salt and stir well. The salt will ‘sweat’ the onions and will draw the moisture out, which will in turn keep the poha moist too.

Once the onions are pink, add the washed poha and mix well. It might seem that the turmeric is less, but mix it thoroughly breaking lumps if any and it should be fine. If you prefer more yellow poha, then add a little more turmeric powder. Caution : addition of too much turmeric powder will make the poha bitter!

Sprinkle 2 tbsp water over the poha and the sugar, give it a quick stir and cover the pan, keep the heat low. After a minute, check the seasoning (salt) and serve hot with a garnish of coriander and a wedge of lemon.

NOTE: Washed poha make for a tasty breakfast cereal option when had with warm milk and a bit of jaggery or sugar.

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How to make ‘ghee’ (clarified butter) at home | Recipe

Saajuk Toop

Saajuk Toop

1. Collect the clotted cream (malai) for a week or ten days depending on how much milk you heat up everyday.
2. To the cream at a starter culture of curd, 1 tsp to 250 ml (approx) of cream. Make sure that the curd that you add in is NOT the thick commercial (Amul, danone, nestle) kind as it will give you a sticky sour cream and the ghee will smell different. Ask your local dairy to give you some dahi to set your own and use that.
3. Mix the starter dahi and the cream well and leave it overnight (or a little longer, in cold weather). You would now get sour cream (which can also be used in baking, dips etc.).
4. Churn the sour cream using a ‘ravi’ to make it a little grainy and then add some water (about 1/4 cup) and churn again. Once the butter begins to separate and float up, add more water (about 1 cup) and churn again.
5. You would now have the butter floating on top and buttermilk at the bottom. Remove the butter ( I do this by hand) and keep in a thick bottomed non reactive utensil or kadhai. Use the buttermilk to make kadhi or pancakes.
6. Now, heat the butter on a low heat and stir occasionally. Do not keep the heat high as the butter will froth up and ruin your kitchen counter.
7. The butter will first become all liquid, then frothy and then after continuous boiling turn into clear yellow ghee. You know the ghee is done when the solid residue at the bottom turns light brown.
8. Once cooled, strain (or decant) the ghee into a clean jar and store at room temperature. If the ghee is not going to be consumed within a month, store it in the refrigerator.
9. The solid residue can be mixed with sugar and eaten with a hot fulka.

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