The word "khana" in Indian Khana Made Easy means food. So come on, let's explore and cook some easy Indian food together including Gluten Free dishes.

March 18, 2018

2018 Ugadi Specials

I traveled two plus hours to get to my parents' place over the weekend to celebrate Ugadi with them. 

It was worth the travel! 

The aroma of sweet halwa puri hit me as soon as I walked into the house. I quickly took off my jacket and shoes and sat ready at the table. That was the signal for my mom!


I said "Mom, I'm hungry". She handed me a small bowl of Ugadi pachadi to drink so I can start off the "new year" properly. 

Then she placed a plate full of yummy food in front me. I was jumping for joy over the beautiful sight in front of me just like S.V. Ranga Rao's expression in the song, Vivaha Bhojanambu from Maya Bazaar (youtube link below). 

I enjoyed eating the mango pulihora, vegetable pakora, and of course multiple halwa puris. She also made mint chutney, green beans with moong, and Italian beans curry to eat with rice and chappati. 

I was all smiles by the end of my meal...hope to have a fruitful new year! 

                  From my family to yours... Happy Ugadi!! 

February 16, 2018

It's the Year of the Dog

Happy Lunar New Year, from our family to yours! 

Will be celebrating this holiday with my husband's family.

February 2, 2018

Spinach Raita with Naan Dippers

Looking for game day appetizer ideas? Expecting company? 

Look no further! 

I love making vegetable raitas or yogurt dips for guests. There are so many varieties you can make. 

The picture above is spinach raita with naan dippers by StoneFire Naan. I LOVE StoneFire's naans. They have different sizes; these bite size naans are great for dipping into your favorite dip or sauce. I also the texture; they crunchy and the flavor is on point. 

My husband and I hosted our first game night at our place a couple of weeks ago. I was trying to figure what snacks I can make using the ingredients I had at home and ones that are healthy; not too fattening. 

I searched my fridge and found yogurt. I always have yogurt on hand because I love yogurt and it's healthy (good probiotic).  I decided to make spinach raita and serve it with the naan dippers. 

Below is an easy recipe to make Spinach raita (in the microwave/stove top):

1 box of frozen chopped spinach (10oz)
6 oz sour cream (regular or fat free)
1 cup plain yogurt (any type as desired: fat free, regular or whole milk)
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder (optional)
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp whole cumin
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
5 to 6 curry leaves, fresh or dry (optional)
1/4 tsp salt or as per your taste

1) Break the spinach into pieces and transfer it into a microwavable container. Then add salt, chili powder, turmeric powder and microwave for 5 to 6 minutes or until the spinach is fully cooked.

2) Allow the vegetable mixture to cool for 10 to 15 minutes and then stir in the sour cream and yogurt.

3) In a small saute pan (or mini nonstick egg fry pan) heat one tablespoon of oil and add mustard and cumin seeds. When they start to splatter, add curry leaves, and mix well. Remove from heat and transfer the contents into the raita (spinach and yogurt mixture) and mix well. 

Finally transfer into your favorite serving dish. Raitas can be served with pulao, parathas, naan, or plain rice. They can also be used as a dipping sauce for some appetizers like nachos, tortilla or pita chips.

Quick Tips
- If you want a thicker dip, add more sour cream and yogurt. 
- You can adjust the spice level as per your taste. 

Click on each vegetable to be routed to the recipe page for other raitas you can try:
beetroot, green bell peppertomato and onion, eggplant or cucumber. We have other yummy snacks that would be great for game day. Check out our recipes page for ideas. 

January 15, 2018

New Beginnings: Cooking in a new Home

Nothing reminds me of home like the aroma of freshly chopped coriander and spices sizzling in the saute pan.

Carrots and Moong Curry and Beetroot Raita served with chapati

Moving to a new city can be unnerving. As I mentioned in my first post of the year, I got married recently and moved to New York.

I unpacked and organized the kitchen in my new home to my liking with my kitchen essentials: utensils, pans, and my Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer. I also brought the other essentials such as ready-to-use sauces, spices, spice mixtures, and herb plants etc, so I can enjoy my favorite dishes in my new home. 

I whipped out my newly filled spice box with garam masala, turmeric, chilli powder, curry leaves, etc and GOT COOKING. I love making raitas because they are so easy to make. And my husband loves moong, so I made Carrots and Moong curry and Beetroot Raita as the vegetable dishes and we ate them with chapati and rice.

Here's to trying new dishes and sharing my experience with you all!  

January 6, 2018

Time for Reflection and Renewal

Happy New Year everyone!!

Date and Almond Laddu
I always take time to reflect on the past year and look to the new year for renewal. This past year so much has happened that I am truly grateful for. My toastmasters club (Open Door Toastmasters) elected me club President for the 2017-2018 year, I became Area Director (for 5 Toastmasters clubs in District 83), and got married to my longtime friend and college classmate, Michael. I'm also thankful for my parents and good friends who always supported me.

We wanted to start off the new year with a healthy, sweet treat: Date and Almond Laddu (balls). Below are the ingredients and instructions on how to make this yummy treat; enjoy anytime of the year.

- 10 oz / 285g Pitted dates
- 2/3 cup Almonds
- 2/3 cup Milk Mava powder
- 2 Tbsp ghee or melted butter
- 3 to 4 drops of Pure Vanilla extract

In a food processor, add dates, almonds and blend them coarsely (approx. 6 to 8 pulses). Next add mava powder, ghee and vanilla extract. Pulse again 3 to 4 times until all ingredients are blended well. Remove the mixture from the jar and make 1" round balls or laddu. Mixture makes about 15 to 18 laddus.

Quick Tips:
1) If desired, roll the laddus in dry coconut. Food coloring can be added to the coconut powder for festive appeal.
2) If milk mava powder is not readily available, you can also use coconut milk powder.

Wishing all a very happy and prosperous new year. How did you celebrate the new year? Please share your stories with us.