Daily Menu Planner

Today I was done in 90 minutes flat!
I made a complete breakfast and lunch with something green, something orange, lots of lentils.  The only dark spot was my white rice ;)
I remember blogging about a vegetarian food pyramid a while ago, complicated.  Pyramids, such as these, are out of fashion now, plates are in.  The gist of a vegetarian diet especially, is, 1/2 the plate should be fruits and vegetables, 1/4 grains and 1/4 proteins.

My usual plan is to cook to so that the resulting menu has 2 - 3 vegetables,  a good amount of protein and the usual grain(s). Today's lunch menu toed this guideline fairly well:

Recipe / Meal Planner

 This riff off the Weekly Menu Planner serves as a rather neat daily/lunch/dinner Menu planner right?
  1.  Kichdi with methi. 

    1 cup moong+masoor dal in any proportion or just 1 or the other dal
    1 cup raw rice
    1cup methi leaves
    1 medium sized onion
    2 spring onions cleaned and sliced white and green parts only
    3 pods garlic
    1 large red tomato

    2 tsp oil
    2  tsp ghee (clarified butter)
    1 tsp mustard seeds
    1 tsp jeera
    1 tsp ajwain

    1 tsp turmeric

    Soak the dal(s) for 20 minutes
    Thorughly wash and chop the methi leaves
    Chop the onion and garlic
    Heat Oil+ghee in a pressure cooker
    Add mustard, jeera and ajwain
    When they pop add the garlic, spring onions and onion and fry 
    Add methi leaves and continue frying.
    Chop tomato, add to the methi and continue frying
    Meanwhile wash the rice and the dals in 3 changes of water
    Add the rice and dals to the cooker, stir fry until the vegetables and rice are well mixed
    Add turmeric, salt and 4.5 cups of water
    Cook covered on high heat for 15 minutes

  2. Keerai Kadi (true north south combo, trust me)

    1/2 bunch siru keerai, leaves only
    1/2 cup yogurt
    1" maanga ingi or 1/2" ginger peeled
    1 amla (gooseberry) (or 2 or 3 or to taste)
    2 tbspoon fresh coconut
    2 tbspoon pottukadalai or popped chana daal
    2 green chillies

    1 tsp oil
    1 tsp mustard seeds
    1 tsp jeera
    1 tsp hing
    2 red chillies

    1 tsp turmeric 

    1 stick cinnamon
    2 cloves
    1 spring curry leaves

    Wash the siru keerai throughly and cook with the green chillies in a cup of water until done.
    Cool.  Meanwhile, chop the amla fine.
    Grind amla, cooked keerai, ginger, coconut and pottukadalai to a paste
    Mix with Yogurt and water until it becomes 2 cups
    Add salt, turmeric and cook for 8 - 10 minutes on medium heat until the kadi thickens.
    Heat oil in a separate pan, add mustard and jeera
    When it pops add the red chillies and hing
    Pour into the kadi and cover with lid

    This tastes awesome with the kichdi above.  
    You could and should add Curry Leaves to the tadka, I didnt have any on hand.
    Traditional north Indian kadi has cinnamon and cloves.  My DH and kids don't like that flavour much.
    I think you could easily use 2 - 3 amla in this dish, I was worried about my 2 year old's reaction to amla. High in Vitamin C, much touted in traditional medicines.
  3. Vaazhaikai, Carrot, Capsicum poriyal

    1 regular green plantain
    1 medium capsicum
    2 carrots
    2 tbsp coconut (optional)
    1 tsp pottukadalai podi (optional)

    2 tsp oil
    1 tsp mustard seeds
    1 tsp jeera
    1 tsp urad
    1 tsp chana
    1 tsp hing
    2 red chillies

    Peel and chop the plantain into batons and put it in water immediately (arrest oxidation)
    Scrape and chop carrots into batons
    the Yogurt and amla are for the kadi, 1 carrot is hiding somewhere
    Halve the capsicum, remove the stem, seeds and white ribs.  Chop into similar sized pieces (similar to carrot/plantain)
    Heat oil, do the tadka
    Add the plantain (drain water first) and fry for a few seconds
    Then add the carrot and capsicum and continue frying for a minute.
    Add 1/2 cup water, salt and turmeric
    Cook on low heat until done 8 - 10 minutes
    Add optional coconut and pottukadalai podi and saute for a minute more.

    Suprisingly good together, carrot capsicum and plantain
     I have not tried measuring and matching the quantities of the ingredients to the recommended table.  How do you go about it anyway, by volume/weight, raw vegetables or cooked vegetables?

Breakfast was Idli with Tomato Gojju and Pottukadalai Podi.  A little lacking in Protein, but Ash had a cup of horlicks to compensate and Gau needs more Carbs than Proteins.

I still wasted an enormous amount of time hounding my fairly well-behaved 10 year old and left home only at 10.  I also did not work out :(  But those issues are next on my list, not top of the list.

The poriyal qualifies as a 3 ingredient dish I think.

Quick Cooking Tip:  Use part of the tadka you make to start the poriyal to garnish sambhar/rasam/kadi.  Saves time and reduces dishes, just needs a little planning.
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