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 and vegan dishes.


March 29, 2016

March Lentil Madness - The More Lentils, the Merrier!

Just because National Nutrition Month (March) is coming to an end, doesn't mean your effort to eating right has to. It's important to eat a well balanced meal with protein, carbohydrates, and fat to maintain an active lifestyle and enjoy life.

Below are few more lentil enriched dishes that we know you will enjoy:

Chunky Chana (chickpea) and Potato Curry

Steamed Rice and Lentil Dumplings (Undrallu) with Ginger and Coriander Sauce

Easy Indian Chili


Easy Dal Makhani

 The fun just started! We have more dishes for you to try...

March 24, 2016

March Lentil Madness Continues with Yellow Cucumber Dal

There are a variety of dishes that can be made with different kinds of dal. In South India, when we make dal, we usually cook it with vegetables and spices and eat with rice. One of my favorite dishes is with Dosakaya.  

Dosakaya dal mixed with rice and garnished with sesame and potato vadiyalu (fritters)

Dosakaya is a type of cucumber; which is yellow in color (pictured below). We use this vegetable when making this dish as well as when making pickle. Pickle means vegetables and spices that are cured in oil (like kimchi). 

It's time to get cookin'. Below are the ingredients for making the Dosakaya dal:

2 medium firm Dosakaya (yellow cucumber, pictured above)
1 cup Toor dal
1 tsp chili powder or as per taste
1 tsp Tamarind paste (or lime size tamarind can be used)
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
Salt, as per taste
Ingredients for seasoning
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
1-1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1-1/2 tsp cumin seeds
10 to 12 curry leaves (fresh or dried)
1/8 tsp Hing (Asafoetida)

We like using our pressure cooker when cooking dal. It's easy and cooks the dal fast. Let's begin: 

Peel and chop dosakaya into 1" pieces. (Please note: we don't discard the seeds; it's as per your taste.)

Add toor dal to the pressure cooker and wash dal. Then add water to the cooker so that the water reaches 1" above the dal. Next add dosakaya, turmeric powder, chili powder, and salt. 

Pressure cook the dal and dosakaya for 12 to 15 minutes until done. After the pressure is released, open the lid and mix in the tamarind. (Please note: if using tamarind, soak it in hot water and squeeze out the juice to add to the cooked dal mixture. If using tamarind paste, just measure out the amount and add it). Mix lightly to not mash the dosakaya pieces. 

In a small saucepan, heat oil over a low-medium flame for the seasoning. Next add mustard and cumin seeds. When they splutter, add hing (asafoetida), and curry leaves. Turn off the stove, and add the seasoning with oil into the dal and serve hot.  

Bon Appetit! 

March 21, 2016

March Lentil Madness - Spinach and Mango Dal


As college basketball season gains momentum, so should our focus on eating better and putting the Spring back into our step. We're celebrating National Nutrition month with dal or lentils. Dal dishes can be prepared and enjoyed in many ways.

Spinach and Green Mango Dal

1 medium green (unripened) mango, peel and chop into 1" cubes
10 oz (or 250g) frozen chopped spinach
1 cup Toor dal (also known as pigeon peas)
1-1/2 tsp red chili powder (or 3 green chilies, chopped)
1/2 tsp fenugreek powder (also known methi powder)
1/2 tsp Turneric powder
1-1/2 tsp salt or as needed
Ingredients for seasoning
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
3 garlic cloves, chopped finely
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp (a pinch) Hing

We used a pressure cooker for this recipe but a heavy bottomed saucepan or Dutch Oven can be used as well.

Cook toor dal, mango, green chilies, fenugreek powder, and turmeric with sufficient water in a pressure cooker until dal is cooked well. Then set aside. Next, heat oil in a medium saucepan and add mustard and cumin seeds. When they start to splutter, add hing and garlic. Stir for one minute and add the frozen spinach. Mix well and cook under closed lid for 5 to 6 minutes. Remove the lid and add the cooked dal and mango mixture. You may add additional water until it's to your desired consistency. Finally, add salt and cook under covered lid for additional 5 to 6 minutes on medium heat.

The spinach and green mango dal is now ready to be served and enjoyed with your favorite grains, whether it be rice or roti.  

We received an honorable mention on 2016 National Nutrition Month Blogroll - Savor the Flavor of Eating Right for this post. We're so excited!!