Easy Black Eyed Peas Salad

Did you know that in the Southern United States, eating black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day is thought to bring prosperity in the New Year? Quite frankly I did not know this either and heard about it only recently from a friend. Not sure if it brings good luck or not, but I am pretty sure that they are good for you. Black-eyed peas are very good fiber sources, rich sources of potassium, natural sodium and zinc.

These legumes are pretty versatile. They can be used for making dry stir fry, soups, gravy based curries and salads of course.

I like preparing salads like these ahead of time so that the flavors of the dressing can marinate and incorporate with the peas and the vegetable. I make a big batch of this and snack on them when I am hungry. It is not only filling but then I feel good about what I am eating. 

The predominant flavor of this salad comes from the lemon juice, so use it liberally. Substitute the beans and veggies with your choice if you do not prefer the ones that I have suggested here.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can black eyed peas (rinsed and drained )
  • 1/2 cup red onion chopped
  • ½ cup chopped cucumber
  • ¼ cup corn (fresh/frozen)
  • 1/2 cup bell pepper chopped
  • 1 jalapeno seeded and chopped
  • handful cilantro, chopped
  • 3 Tbsp lemon juice
  • Salt to taste
  • ¼ tsp sugar
  • ¼ tsp Pepper powder /crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 Tbsp oil

Method

  • If using canned black eyed peas then drain the liquid and rinse the beans. Drain water completely.
  • Else you can soak the black eyed peas overnight and pressure cook the following day. Drain the cooked liquid (or use it for something else) and use only the cooked beans.
  • In a big bowl add the veggies first and toss it gently. Add the cooked peas, cilantro, corn and combine them well.
  • Add salt, sugar, lemon juice, pepper powder and stir well.
  • Let it sit aside for an hour or so, so that veggies soak up all the goodness. 

Kulith Idli/ Horsegram Idli and the Giveaway winner….

Thank you dear readers for participating in the Masala Dabba giveaway. Based on the response it appears that many people are impressed with the ying yang version of the Masala Dabba designed and created by GitaDini. 

As promised I did a lucky draw with help from random.org and my 7 year old. Without much ado the lucky winner is “Triveni Limye”. I have sent her an email and she has gladly responded back. Congratulations Triveni, hope you enjoy the sleek masala box which you will receive shortly.

And now off to today’s recipe of making Idli using Kulith/ Horse gram. Traditional Idli is quite common in our house. But then I love making tweaks and adding other nutritious lentils, beans and making it much more nutritious. So I tried making Idli by using Horse gram along with the usual Urad daal. 

There is no much difference in taste with the addition of Horse Gram in this batter as compared to the usual idli (provided correct fermentation is done).  However if you are not used to eating brown idli or having for the first time, then you may feel a slight after taste than that of regular old idli. But this can be overcome by serving this along with good chutney or a side dish. 

Ingredients

  • ½ cup horsegram/kulith
  • 1/2 cup urad daal (split and de-husked)
  • 1 ¼ cup idli rava
  • Tablespoon of cooked rice/ poha (beaten rice) [soaked]
  • 1 tsp methi 

Preparation:

  • In several changes of changes clean the urad daal, horse gram and methi seeds.
  • Soak the horsegram. urad daal along with methi overnight (6-8 hours) in enough water. 
  • The next morning or after 8 hours soak the idli rava in water for 1-2 hours.
  • Grind the urad daal, methi with cooked rice/poha and required amount of water to make a paste. 
  • Do not add too much water; the water should be sufficient just so that the mixer/grinder motor runs smoothly.
  • When I notice some small fine bubbles (maybe about 4-5 of them) on the top I stop the grinding. (This is optional and may not be the case all the time).
  • Drain the water completely from the soaked rava and add this urad daal paste thoroughly with washed idli rava. This should be as thick as possible.
  • Keep it aside to ferment for at least 8 hours (14 hours in winter atleast).

Method:

  • After the batter is fermented, add salt and water and mix the idli batter well. The batter should not be very thick. (it needs to be of pouring consistency)
  •  Grease the idli stand and pour batter in each of the container in the idli stand.
  • Steam this in a pressure cooker without whistle/weight for 15 minutes.
  • Take the idlis out and serve along with chutney. Serve hot.

Healthy Alfalfa Sprouts Salad

 

Wishing you all a happy and healthy New Year. Hope the New Year is filled with joy and love!

I feel so good kick starting the first recipe of the year with this simple and healthy salad. It is so light and delicious that you will not feel that you are eating something so healthy with each bite.

 One of the major goals for me this year is to be fit and healthy. With our hectic lifestyle of balancing life, family, work, homework, extracurricular activities it gets challenging to squeeze in time to exercise and stay fit. So the idea is to incorporate as much of these light foods as possible to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

 I had the opportunity to try out different recipes during the last part of December which are healthy and not time consuming and so I will be posting them as I go along.

 Alfalfa sprouts are readily available in the supermarket and I add them to salads and sandwiches whenever I can. A little goes a long way and they last for a long time in the fridge.

Ingredients: 

  • 3 cups spring greens  mix( I used the store bought one) [cleaned and coarsely chopped]
  • 3/4 cup of chopped cucumber (seeded)
  • ¼ cup chopped carrots
  • ½ cup snow peas
  • 1 avocado (peeled and chopped)
  • ¼ cup blueberries (optional)
  • Handful of alfalfa sprouts
  • ¼ cup chopped onions
  • 1 medium tomato (seeded and chopped) /grape tomato
  • Handful of pepita seeds
  • Bread croutons (optional)

 Dressing: 

  • 1 Tbsp oil
  • Crushed pepper
  • Juice of a lemon
  • 1 tsp finely grated ginger
  • ¼ tsp sugar

Other suggestion: Raspberry vinaigrette/ Balsamic Vinaigrette 

Method: 

  • In a big bowl add the greens and make a bed of it. Next add the chopped veggies, fruits and mix them well.
  • In a small bowl mix the ingredients for dressing, shake well and keep aside.
  • Transfer to serving plates and add the dressing as required. Top with pepita seeds.