Black beans, Corn & Rice Salad

I am thrilled to kick start the Light Lunches event here with one of our favorite rice salads; South west inspired corn, black bean rice salad. We eat this regularly at Chipotle (chain of fast casual restaurant) and its enticing taste has prompted me to try this at home.

With stuff like corn, black beans, peppers, cilantro and lime it is not only eye catching but bursting with flavors as well. It is light on the stomach but delicious and pleases the taste palette easily. 

The quantity mentioned in the ingredients is for reference. You may change the quantity as per your taste. For example, I like more of corn and less of black beans while DH is the other way around and adds lots of lemon and jalapeno. 

As you go along eating this salad, you might find it to be a little dry mainly because of the presence of black beans. So I suggest gulping this down with a healthy juice or a shake as that evens out the dryness.

On a final note, don’t forget to leave your comment on the Event page (if you have not done so) and win that cool Taste of Home cookbook. The event ends on June 20th and there are only 14 days left.


  • 1 cup white rice (already cooked)
  • 1/4 cup black beans ( rinsed and drained )
  • 1/4 cup corn kernels (fresh/frozen)
  • 1 small bell pepper/capsicum (any color diced)
  • 1 small onion chopped (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp of cilantro (chopped)
  • 1 medium jalapeno 


  • Juice of 1 lemon/lime
  • 1 garlic clove (peeled and pressed)
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 1-2 Tbsp oil (divided)
  • Salt per taste
  • Crushed pepper 


  • First prepare the dressing by mixing, lemon juice (only half), chopped garlic, chili flakes, salt, 1 Tbsp oil and pepper in a bowl. Keep aside.
  • In another bowl, add warm rice and mix it along with juice of remaining part of lemon, 0.5 Tbsp oil, salt, cilantro and mix well.
  • Take the beans, corn, jalapeno, onion and pepper in large serving bowl. Add rice after it has cooled.
  • Whisk the dressing slowly over this. Stir gently to combine.
  • Serve with juice or with tortilla chips.


Chettinad Potatoes

Inspiration as they say comes from unexpected places and this recipe is a testimonial to that. Few weeks ago, I was looking for some North Indian styled recipe using spinach on Sanjeev Kapoor’s website, hoping to find some inspiration and ideas, but few searches and clicks later I landed on a recipe of Spicy Tempered Potatoes called Urulai Chettinadu with which I was pretty impressed. Strange! I would have never imagined searching for Chettinad and Sanjeev Kapoor at the same time. 

Here is a good description of what Chettinad cuisine is on Sig’s blog. This cuisine originated in the southern parts of Tamil Nadu state. This cuisine is well known for its hot and spicy, aromatic non vegetarian dishes. Chettinad cuisine is different from the traditional healthy vegetarian cuisine of the Tamil Brahmins. (these sentences are rephrased from her blog)

Even though I was raised in Bangalore (South of India), I have/had not tasted dishes related to this either at family, friends or restaurants. To me, it meant some type of exotic cuisine which is spicy and consisted only of non-vegetarian/meat dishes.

 We do have a Chettinad restaurant in our part of town. But the restaurant I am told has nothing to do with Chettinad cooking specialty. They use it as a sort of advertisement and en-cash on the name. So I plead my ignorance about this cuisine and dare not make any authentic claims about this dish. But truly the dish is flavorful, spicy and delicious.

That being said, I am open to learning and I would love to hear from you dear readers about this cuisine and any vegetarian dish that you love and strongly recommend. 

Happy Weekend, ya’ll. If you are in the United States then wish you a very happy long weekend. We are off on a 3 day road trip, so see you all after that!

Tempered Chettinad Potatoes

Recipe Source: Adapted from Sanjeev Kapoor 


  • 10-15 Baby potatoes ( halved )
  • 15-20 small onions/ pearl onions
  • 4 dried red chillies ( I used byadgi variety)
  • 2 Tbsp split black gram (urad dal)
  • 1 Tbsp chana daal/ Bengal gram
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds
  • Turmeric a pinch
  • 5- 10 black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 5 – 10 curry leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil 


  • Peel the onions, cut the stems and keep aside. Peel the potatoes and cut into halves.
  • In a small pan, dry roast the red chillies, chana daal, sesame seeds, urad dal and black pepper. Let this cool and grind to a coarse powder. (This powder can be stored and used for other curries as well.)
  • Heat a big pan and add oil to it. Add mustard seeds, curry leaves and let it splutter.
  • Add the small onions and sauté till lightly browned and cooked.
  • Add potatoes, stir, add salt and sprinkle water. Cover and cook on medium heat check in between and sprinkle water as required and toss. This might take about eight to ten minutes for the potatoes to cook.
  • Now add the freshly prepared masala powder, turmeric and mix. Check for salt.
  • Cover and cook over low heat for about three to four minutes more till the potatoes are done.
  • Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot. 

Banana Pepper, Raw Banana Dry Curry

Hope you all had a good weekend. We had a wonderful yet busy weekend. We had a line of chores, but did not complete most of it. The usual complaint about the weekend is that it gets over very fast. During the week I enthusiastically plan for the weekend, but then most of the tasks don’t get done and before we know it gets over in the blink of an eye. So many things, so little time ! 

Last week we came up with this recipe on a whim after scanning through the ingredients in the fridge that needed immediate attention. The ‘culprits’ were banana pepper and plantain. Of course, when we bought them we had no plans of combining them together to prepare a dish. The initial plan was to make some bhajjis with the banana peppers and Spiced Raw banana fry with the plantain. 

Neither of them materialized and they sat there languishing in the fridge. So we did what any foodie would do, which is to combine them, throw in some spices and make a dry delectable dish which would pair well with rotis and rice.


  •  4 Banana peppers (use any pepper of choice)[ remove the seeds, so that it is not spicy]
  •  1 big raw banana/ plantain
  •  1 small onion
  •  1 tsp grated ginger
  • 2-3 crushed garlic pods (skin removed)
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  •  1 tsp Jeera/cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp  mustard seeds
  •  Oil
  •  Salt to taste
  •  Lemon juice  


  • Wash the banana peppers thoroughly, chop into bite size pieces and keep aside. (Not too small).
  • Peel the onion and chop it into small pieces. Chop the coriander leaves and keep aside.
  • Peel the plantain and chop it into small pieces. Now boil the chopped raw banana in water separately and make sure the banana is not completely cooked.
  • Powder the raw fennel seeds and raw coriander seeds together and keep aside.


  •  Take a heavy bottom pan; add about 2 tsps of oil. Add jeera, mustard seeds, and let it splutter.
  •  Add the ginger garlic and mix well. Add the diced onions. After the onions are sautéed, add the cut bell peppers, salt and mix well.
  • Add the powdered fennel and coriander seeds powder and stir until the raw smell is gone.
  •  Next add the cooked plantain to this and mix well. Add more salt and oil if necessary. Cover with lid and let this cook on a medium flame.
  •  Lastly garnish with chopped coriander leaves and lemon juice.

Serve hot with Rotis/ phulkas or with Rice.