Tag Archives: calcium-rich

Methi Chole With Cashew Cream

A while ago, I had made Methi Malai Matar (fenugreek leaves and peas with cream) using soy creamer and having loved it, I had bought frozen methi leaves with the idea of making it again. When I saw the Vegan Mofo Iron Chef challenge to make something with chickpeas, I wanted to give it a shot. I also wanted to cook with Methi leaves this weekend, so I decided to make a ‘Methi Malai Chole’ instead. Not terribly original, I know! But I love chickpeas and doing something for the Iron chef challenge sounded like fun!

Having run out of soy creamer, I used cashew cream instead of malai. I had soaked cashews in the fridge overnight and the resultant cream is so potent, just a little goes a long way! I had also soaked the chickpeas for about 16 hours, so thanks vegan mofo for the chance to do a bit of stress free cooking on a Sunday morning. My husband is warding off a jet lag by sleeping, so its a quiet morning!

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Ingredients

  • Methi/Fenugreek Leaves, tightly packed – 1 cup
  • Chickpeas – soaked and cooked/ canned – 1.5 cups
  • Cashew Cream – ¼ cup [soak cashews overnight and blend until really smooth with enough water to achieve the consistency of heavy cream]
  • Tomatoes, chopped – 2
  • Onion, chopped – ½ cup
  • Ginger – garlic paste – 1.5 tbsp
  • Red chilis, finely minced – 3
  • Garam Masala powder – 1 tsp
  • Paprika/ Cayenne – 2 tsp
  • Oil – 2 tsp
  • Salt – to taste
  • Juice from half a lemon (optional)
  • Something to garnish – cilantro or spring onions

Directions

  • Heat oil in a wok/pot/saucepan
  • When the oil is hot, add chopped onions, ginger-garlic paste and red chilis; stir occassionally under the onions change color
  • Add tomatoes and cook the mixture for 5-7 minutes, until tomatoes are cooked
  • Add the methi leaves and a bit of water to prevent sticking.
  • In about 4-5 minutes, when the methi leaves have somewhat cooked, add the cooked chickpeas
  • Add salt, cayenne, garam masala and chickpeas and cook for another 5-7 minutes.
  • Add cashew cream and bring the heat down to a gentle simmer, for about 4 minutes.
  • Mix lemon juice and garnish with chopped spring onions.

Enjoy with carbohydrates of choice – rice, bread, rotis, quinoa, anything! According to the Methi leaves packet, 4.5 ounces of methi contains 39% of daily value of Calcium. Pretty neat!

Easy Dal and Collard Greens

As a vegan, I often get asked where I get my calcium from. I must admit that getting the recommended amount of Calcium takes a bit more mindfulness than I would like to let on, but I have come to realize that this applies to everyone, no matter what their dietary restrictions. Mindfulness in eating healthfully is key, no matter what the diet. Of course I have a bottle of Calcium supplements and I drink a lot of fortified non dairy milk, but I feel most satisfied when I get my Calcium through leafy greens. I had bought of bunch of Collards after reading Madhur Jaffrey’s recipe for Collard greens in her book World-of-the-east Vegetarian, which is really a delightful book. Its vegetarian, but nearly every recipe is adaptable to be vegan.

The collard greens (or Haak as its called in the book) is very simply cooked – stir fried with mustard oil and then cooked until tender with nothing but salt, asafetida, hot red chillis and green chillis to add to its flavor. The recipe calls for ½ cup of oil, while I only used 1 tbsp for about 4 loosely packed cups of chopped collards. I appreciated the simplicity of the dish as I could detect each and every ingredient.

Based on a quick research, I cooked one average sized bunch of collards and it has about a 5 cup pre-cook yield, so at least 300mg of Calcium to estimate conservatively.

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And the protein for the day was a very simple and really quick dal that came together in under 30 minutes. A simple search will result in a million variations for making dal, but here is my go-to recipe when I need it really quick. My super easy version, which is really perfect after a long day’s work!

Ingredients and Directions For Ridiculously Easy Dal:

  1. Pressure cook a cup of dal – I used ½ masoor dal and ½  mung dal (both skinned and split) with salt and turmeric. These cook really really fast, and hence my lentils of choice.
  2. In the meanwhile, chop ½ an onion, ½ a tomato and 1-2 green chilies very finely & do something else while dal cooks.
  3. After dal is cooked, heat 2 tsp of oil and add 1 tsp cumin and 1 tsp mustard seeds when the oil is hot (med-high heat).
  4. Add chopped onion, green chilies and 1 tbsp of ginger-garlic paste and let it brown a bit. 3-5 minutes
  5. Add tomato and stir another minute.
  6. Now add dal + 1 cup of water or more if you like it a thinner consistency.
  7. Here is where you go all out with spices: I used cayenne to taste, 1 tsp amchoor powder, ½ tsp cumin and ½ tsp coriander powder.
  8. Close the pot, bring to a boil, garnish generously with finely chopped cilantro and done!
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We had this with store-bought rotis and an evening of Netflix and quickly called it a night!