Friday, April 29, 2016

Chia Seed Pudding

This recipe has been inspired by, wherein I came across a variety of post-workout snacks.Being a physical therapist, I understand the importance of working out and eating healthy . A healthy balanced diet goes hand in hand with a regular exercise regime to give one a healthy body. You can read more about the exercise portion below under " tip for healthy living". Coming back to diet, it is important to eat the right kind of food at the right time.  Frequent small meals are recommended to maintain a steady blood sugar level and to prevent binge eating. It is important to make sure that every meal has some protein in it. Proteins keep us from getting hungry as it takes longer to digest. Protein is needed for growth and regeneration of the body tissues. It is also needed to build muscles. Today, I am sharing with you a recipe that would make for a great way to start the day, or used as a mid-day or a post-workout snack to refuel your day. It could also make for a healthy guilt-free dessert. This is perfect for those who want to lose weight and even diabetics( as long as they don't add any additional sugar/sweetener into it). 

Dietary protein comes mainly from non-vegetarian sources. There are fewer vegetarian sources of protein and only  a handful of them are complete proteins. Proteins are made up of 20 amino acids, 9 of which our body cannot produce and therefore need to be sourced from our diet. Although lentils and nuts are great sources of protein, they are not complete proteins, that is why they are usually paired with grains ( eg: idli-sambar, rice & beans, Hummus& pita). The handful of vegetarian sources of complete protein are soy, quinoa, buckwheet, hempseed and chia seeds. 

Chia seeds are native to central and southern Mexico and Guatamala. It is used in south American countries as part of their regular diet, due to it's nutritional value which provides them energy for their hard work in the fields. Chia seeds are not only a great source of protein and vitamins, they are the best plant-based source of omega-3 fatty acids. You can find more information about chia seeds here.

Being predominantly vegetarian, I am constantly striving to include protein in my diet. Chia seeds are a great source of protein for vegetarians, providing 4 grams of protein for 2 tablespoons serving ( recommended). I have always added Chia seeds into my daily oatmeal,  into my smoothies and salad dressings, but had never made a pudding out of it until my co-worker introduced me to it. She is a health-conscious person who works out regularly and eats healthy. She has been making this pudding for a while now and uses it as a mid-day or post-workout snack.  When I tried it, I fell in love with it! It was light, yet filling, making it a perfect snack! I then had to make it for myself. My co-worker had also shared the original source of the recipe with me, which you can find here.The original recipe calls for plain unsweetened almond milk, plain Greek yogurt. I had some flavored coconut yogurt  and  some plain Greek yogurt that I wanted to finish.

I decided to make the pudding using it. I mixed 1 cup of Greek yogurt with 1 cup of coconut yogurt and 1/4 th cup and 2 tbsp chia seeds.

I decided to bring it to my friends at a gathering that we were having. When I took it out of the fridge to bring it with me, I felt that the pudding was too thick. I then decided to add another cup of plain coconut yogurt to make it a little thinner and it worked. The best part, my not-so-healthy eating friends also enjoyed it. The only fruit I had on hand were strawberries and therefore that's all I used. You could top this pudding before serving with any topping of your choice: fruits of your choice & nuts of your choice if you wish!

The making of this pudding is also very versatile. You could make it vegan if you wish by using almond milk/ soy milk/coconut milk/ soy yogurt/coconut yogurt if you wish. Or you could just make it with regular milk and yogurt. I used Greek yogurt to increase the protein content of my snack. You could make it sweetened or unsweetened. When made unsweetened, it makes for a great snack for diabetics as well. If you wish to sweeten it, you can sweeten it with healthy sweeteners like maple syrup/honey/agave or with regular brown sugar/sugar.I chose to make it healthy and used honey. You could even drizzle honey on top before serving  instead of mixing it in.

The beauty of this recipe is that it is just mixing of a few ingredients together and putting it in the refrigerator. You could make a batch on Sunday night and take them a little everyday , topped with freshly cut fruits to eat at work or after your work-out. Do try this, you might like it, just the way I do! Yes, the texture does take a little getting used to! Then again, I love textures in my food.

Servings: 4-6 ( one cup each)

Ingredients :

Plain/ flavored Greek yogurt: 1 six-oz cup
Plain/ flavored Coconut yogurt: 2 cups ( any yogurt can be used)
Chia seeds: 1/4 cup and 2 tbsp
Vanilla essence: 1/2 tsp
Salt: a pinch
Honey/maple syrup: 1 tsp ( optional)
Strawberries: 4-6 , one sliced strawberry per cup.
Nuts of your choice: 1 tbsp, chopped ( optional)


Add the chia seeds, yogurt, salt, vanilla essence to a bowl. Use a whisk/ big spoon and mix thoroughly.

Cover the bowl and refrigerate it for 3-4 hours minimum.

When ready to serve, using a whisk, mix it once thoroughly to make sure there are no lumps.

Serve in bowls the desired amount ( around 3/4 cup per person).
Top it with sliced fruits of your choice. In my case, strawberries.

Garnish with chopped nuts if you wish.


You can find more post-workout  healthy snacks and high protein snacks  by clicking on them.

I am bringing this healthy snack for all my friends to try at Throwback Thursday#36, Fiesta Friday#117 and Saucy Saturdays#42! The co-hosts this week are two excellent bloggers, Mollie @ The Frugal Hausfrau and Scarlett @ Unwed Housewife

Cooking made easy:

This pudding can be adjusted to your desired consistency by adding some kind of milk to the mixture.

 If you are wary of the chia seeds, a good place to start would be with a little bit of chia seeds and use Greek yogurt so that you still have a protein-rich snack. As you get used to the texture, you can increase the amount of chia seeds used.

It is a good idea to serve this pudding with fruits that are sweet and not use much of the sweeteners to sweeten it.

Tip for healthy living:

When one decides to exercise, choosing the right kind of exercise is just as important. There are 2 types of exercise: aerobic and anaerobic. Aerobic  exercise is low-impact activity that you can do for a long period of time. Some examples are walking, jogging, cycling and swimming. Anaerobic exercises are those that are high-impact or strenuous and  can be done for only short duration. These  include sprinting and lifting weights.  If your intent is to loose weight, you need to do aerobic exercises. If your goal is to build muscle, you need to focus on anaerobic exercise such as lifting weights. Regardless of your intent, the best exercise regimen is one that makes you do a combination  of aerobic exercises and lifting weights. When you build muscles, they burn energy even when you are not exercising and this helps accelerate loss of weight. 


Food for thought:

The greatest deception men suffer is from their own opinions. Leonardo da Vinci

Please do share your thoughts. Your opinion matters!

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Guest post series: Quinoa-Beet Patties by Preethi Prasad

I hope all of you enjoyed Sushma Mallya's Dahi Bhendi/ Bhendi Sasam last week. This week we have a very enthusiastic, health-conscious, innovative, new kid on the block ( of blogging world) Preethi Prasad from Preethi's Cuisine. She hails from Bangalore and has been residing in Singapore since 18 years.

Like many of us, Preethi is a working mother. She has two boys ages 16 and 11 who love to eat! While Preethi has always cooked as a hobby, she started actively cooking and experimenting with food a couple of years ago. She then wanted to document and share her experiments in the kitchen with others. With this intent, Preethi's Cuisine was born. Her blog is turning one on . I wish her much success! She has many healthy and innovative recipes on her blog. Do visit her blog Preethi's Cuisine for all the yummy recipes.

Today, Preethi is sharing with us a delicious recipe of Quinoa & Beet Patties. Preethi says: "These yummy patties are loaded with the goodness of Quinoa and other multigrains and beetroot. It is easy to make and can be used in Burgers too".

Servings: makes 12 medium-sized patties


3 Beetroots 
2 Potatoes 
4 Garlic Cloves
1 Cup Quinoa cooked in Vegetable stock 
1.5 Tsp Garam Masala
2 Tbsp Gram Flour/ Besan
1 Tsp Chilli Powder
Salt to Taste
1 Tsp Jeera
1 Tsp Chaat Masala
1 Cup Multigrain Powder( A mix of roasted and powdered Green Gram ,Flax seeds and Chia Seeds)
1 Green Chilli
Finely Chopped Coriander


Pressure cook Beets, Potatoes, green chilli,Ginger and Garlic with 1 glass of water for up to four whistles. In case the beets are not fully mashed, blitz once in a blender to get a fine paste. 

Put all the boiled veggies in a wide bowl without the stock .

Use the Vegetable stock to cook Quinoa as per the instructions on the package.

Add all the masalas( spices),  besan, coriander, jeera,multigrain powder and salt to the boiled veggies and mix well. 

Take a small quantity of the mixture and give a round shape. Repeat this process for the balance mixture.

Heat a heavy-bottomed pan. Smear a teaspoon of oil to the bottom of the pan. Place the round patties and cook on both sides with a teaspoon of oil.

Enjoy these yummy patties with green chutney!!!!

I am bringing this lovely dish of Preethi's for all my friends to try at Throwback Thursday#36Fiesta Friday#117 and Saucy Saturdays#42! The co-hosts this week are two excellent bloggers, Mollie @ The Frugal Hausfrau and Scarlett @ Unwed Housewife.

Please do share your thoughts. Your opinion matters!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Mixed Lentil Penne (Bean pasta); gluten free; Meatless Monday

When Meatless Monday reached out to me about trying out Bean pasta from Modern Table Meals, and coming up with a nice and easy recipe, I jumped at the chance! Why? Because, a) I am an ardent champion of the Meatless Monday campaign. I believe that they are doing a great job worldwide promoting vegetarian eating and thereby healthy eating! Vanessa Protass  is just awesome! b) I don't eat regular pasta as I avoid gluten in my diet. Therefore I was very excited to try a gluten-free pasta!

The package from Modern table came a few days later with two packs of Mixed Lentil Penne, a pack of wooden cooking spoons and a nice tote bag.

I must tell you guys that I was not at all disappointed with the Mixed Lentil Penne from Modern Table Meals.

It looks like regular pasta, it cooks like regular pasta and it tastes like regular pasta! No, No. It is not just me saying this. I had some friends over for dinner when I made this particular pasta dish and they couldn't tell me that it was any different!In fact, they didn't even know that it was not regular pasta until I specifically mentioned that it was bean pasta. It is also light and does not make your stomach feel heavy and bloated . The best part: it is loaded with protein due to the lentils present in it, so you could just toss it with some veggies and a nutritious dinner/lunch is ready!

Do try this quick and very easy recipe! You will not be disappointed . Also, it is a great way to sneak in protein and veggie into your kid's and your tummies!

Servings: 4


Modern table mixed lentil penne pasta: 1 package
Broccoli florets : 1 small bunch ( around 2 cups)
Endamame: 8 oz pack, ( peeled and shelled,ready to cook)
Olive oil: 1 tbsp
Butter: 1 tsp ( skip butter if vegan)
Garlic: 6-8 cloves, minced
Capers: 1/4 cup
Olives, chopped: 2 tbsp ( any olives may be used, I used black olives); optional.
Dried Italian seasoning: 1 tsp
Freshly ground black pepper: 1 tsp
Salt: as per taste


Boil water with 1/4 tsp salt,  in a big pot/ saucepan. When the water comes to boil, add the penne in and cook for 8-9 minutes or until al dente. Drain and keep aside. Reserve the water.

Boil the same reserved water. When the water comes to boil, add Endamame  and cook for 2 mins. At the end of 2 mins, add the broccoli florets and cook for another 2 mins. Drain and keep aside. Reserve 1/4 cup of the drained water.

Heat a sauté pan or skillet on medium heat. Add the butter, oil and minced garlic. Sauté the garlic for a minute until aromatic. 

Add in the vegetables, the capers, the chopped olives, the herbs and the reserved 1/4 cup of pasta water. Let it come together for 10 seconds. 

Now add in the  cooked pasta. Toss it all together.

Serve hot.


I am bringing this very healthy meal for all my friends to try at Throwback Thursday#36Fiesta Friday#117 and Saucy Saturdays#42! The co-hosts this week are two excellent bloggers, Mollie @ The Frugal Hausfrau and Scarlett @ Unwed Housewife.

Cooking made easy:

One of the things I like to do while making pasta/noodles is cook the veggies with the pasta. Depending on the amount of time required for each one, I add it one after the other. In case of the above dish, the pasta requires to be cooked for 8 mins, the Endamame for 4 minutes and the broccoli for 2 mins or less. So, I would start with boiling the water with salt, add the pasta and keep the timer for 4 mins. At the end of 4 minutes, I would add the Endamame and cook for another 2 minutes, at the end of which I would add the broccoli florets and cook for another 2 minutes. When it is done, drain it all together.

Tip for healthy living:

Reduce the oil/ butter content in pasta dishes and make it healthier. You can still have a pasta dish that is not dry by adding some of the pasta water reserved while draining the pasta! This makes the pasta creamy and delicious!

Food for thought:

To live a pure unselfish life, one must count nothing as one's own in the midst of abundance. Buddha

Friday, April 22, 2016

Guest post series: Bhenda Sasam ( Crispy Okra in a spiced yogurt sauce) by Sushma Mallya

The month of April is extra-special! It is my birthday month! This week is my birthday-week! Guess how I am celebrating??

 I am going away on a vacation next week since we are having Spring Break! Yay!! I am also celebrating my birthday by starting " the guest post series" which I have been planning for a while now! I am so happy that it is finally coming to fruition! As part of this series, you will be seeing healthy, quick and easy recipes from a variety of food bloggers: some new and some who are already established! It is going to be a nice mix! The guest post will be featured every Friday of the month. They will be accompanying me to many parties! It is going to be so much fun!! I am so excited!!

If you are interested in writing a guest post for my blog: Su's Healthy Living, please reach out to me at The criteria for the recipe is that it has to be healthy, quick and easy to make!! That's not too much to ask is it??;)

I am beginning this series with a guest post from a very good friend from the blogging world: Sushma Mallya! She blogs from Authentic Food Delights. She is one of the nicest, unassuming people that I have met in the blogging world. Believe it or not she has had her blog for 8 years now! Way before all the rat race that is going on today! She is a mother of two beautiful boys. Her blog started as a way to document all the recipes that she learnt from her mother, mother-in-law and friends. When she is not churning up delicious dishes in her kitchen, she immerses herself in her other passion, which is painting and sketching! Her creativity and artistry is evident in her food photography! Her blog has a myriad of recipes, mostly traditional Konkani recipes and a few fusion recipes. She has been residing in UK for the past 13 years. Do check out her blog  Authentic Food Delights for more amazing recipes.

Today she is sharing with us a recipe that she learnt from her mother: Benda Sasam ( crispy okra in a yogurt-based sauce). This is a very quick and easy recipe that is healthy too!  This dish brings along a variety of textures and flavors with crispy okra in a delicious spiced yogurt sauce.

Servings: 3-4 people


10-12 ladies finger (bhindi) (cut into thin slices )
2 tbsp cooking oil

For Masala

1/2 cup freshly grated coconut 

1/4 tsp Mustard seeds

3-4 green chilli (adjust according to your spice level)

1/4 cup Thick curd /yogurt 

salt to taste

For tempering /tadka

1 tsp ghee + 1 tbsp oil

1/4 tsp mustard seeds

1/4 tsp Jeera

1/4 tsp urad dal

1 red chilli broken into bits 

1 sprig of curry leaves 

  • Wash Bhindi and pat it dry . Cut Bhindi into thin slices and keep aside. Then take a non stick pan add oil then add ladies finger and fry till v crisp on a low heat and keep aside. ( This can be made well ahead of time and mixed at the time of serving).
  • Grind coconut, green chilles, mustard seeds,  yogurt and grind to a fine paste. Add water to thin it to the desired consistency.
  • Take it out in a container. keep aside.
  • Now Prepare the tadka ; Heat a non stick pan add in ghee and little oil then add in mustard seeds. Jeera, Urad dal, when it starts spluttering add red chilli, fry add in curry leaves.
  • Pour this tempering /tadka over the ground paste (NOTE: There is no heating in this type of curry ).
  • Add in fried bhindi at the time of serving (so that it stays crisp). Then serve it Garnished with finely chopped coriander leaves . Done it's awesome with Rice ...YUMM !

I am bringing this lovely dish of Sushma's for all my friends to try, at Throwback Thursday#35, Fiesta Friday#116 and Saucy Saturdays! Angie's co-hosts this week are Judi @ cookingwithauntjuju and Cynthia @ eatmunchlove.

Please do share your thoughts. Your opinion matters!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Diabetes Friendly Thursday; First Anniversary Special!

Diabetes Friendly Thursdays is a noble cause initiated by Sonal Gupta @, a very versatile food blogger.  She hopped on this journey alone. Along the way, many of us joined her, some left, some remained . It has been a year already and DFT is celebrating it's first anniversary in April. 

To celebrate the joy and hard work of working on DFT for an year, team DFT is 

bringing a collection of Diabetes Friendly Recipes from individual contributors. 

BOOKMARK this post for the future reference.

                   Creating Recipes with a Cause! I am a proud DFT blogger. 
                                        To learn about DFT, Read this Link
                                        To view more DFT recipes, Click here!

The purpose of this initiative was to help diabetics worldwide eat healthy but delicious meals. Meals that would be delicious, yet healthy; simple and easy to make. Meals that wouldn't make them feel that they were missing out on food. Meals that wouldn't make them feel different from the rest of the members of the family. Meals that the lady of the house could put together without too much thought and serve it to all the members of the household. Meals that could be shared and enjoyed by all.

On the occasion of the first anniversary, it was decided that we will all share with you the best dishes from last year. It was suggested that we pick 5-6 of our favorite dishes! To me, that was a rather daunting task. I like all of them. However, upon   further contemplation, I chose the following six. There is a reason for this: all the following choices are appetizers or small healthy meals. I figured that these would make for perfect dinner options. It is preferred that diabetics eat light at night. When you eat a complete meal with several items on the plate, it adds up to a lot of calories. Instead, you are better off either eating a simple salad, wrap, or any other appetizer like items for dinner, again in limited quantities only and with no second helpings. Without further ado, here are the six delicious dishes. For detailed recipe of each one, click on the title itself.

Ragi ( finger millet) Porridge

Ragi ( finger millet) porridge is perfect for dinner and for any time that an individual experiences hypoglycemia. It is ready within a few minutes and is extremely nourishing. For recipe click here.

Kulith Kosumbari ( Horse-gram salad)

Kulith or horse-gram is a extremely protein-rich. This when combined with the goodness of all the vegetables into a delicious kosumbari, it makes for a filling meal. Also, kulith is one of the few lentils that is not gassy and therefore does not cause bloating. For recipe, click here.

Instant appe/paniyaram with vegetables

This is another of the dishes that can be put together pretty quick and the addition of vegetables makes it a balanced meal. For detailed recipe, click here.

Zucchini Boats

This is one of my all-time favorite meals. It is super-quick and easy to make, delicious and filling. I am yet to meet someone who does not like this dish. For detailed recipe, click here.

Quinoa-Sweet Potato Mini-Cutlets with Cranberry Chutney/Dip

Quinoa is a super-grain and sweet potato has several health benefits. Together, when combined in a cutlet, they are delicious, wholesome and nourishing. For detailed recipe, click here.

Tacos made healthy

I could talk volumes about tacos! They are so simple and easy to make. Yet, so versatile!! Anything can go into taco! Vegetables, quinoa, fish, chicken, eggs.. sky is the limit! Dips can vary as per your taste. Just ensure that it is healthy! For detailed recipe, click here!

Do check the Best of First Year from all the Teammates of TEAM DFT. If I start talking about them, I won't be able to stop. Each one is better than the other! So go ahead and bookmark this post! You will have so many wonderful recipes to choose from!

Sonal Gupta@simplyvegetarian777

Shailja@Sweet &Savory by Shailja  

Swati@ Let's Eat Healthy Tonight

Sarika @Tasteoftheworld.

Apsara @Eating Well Diary

Parvathy@Crackle & Temper

I am sharing this very useful post with my friends at Throwback Thursday#35, Fiesta Friday#116 and Saucy Saturdays! Angie's co-hosts this week are Judi @ cookingwithauntjuju and Cynthia @ eatmunchlove.

Tip for healthy living:

Always go for whole grain foods and food with a lower glycemic index value ( GI). These food items are digested, absorbed and metabolized  slowly and cause a lower and slower rise in blood glucose levels. 



I am not a nutritionist or dietician. My knowledge and information is based on my research and reading from different resources. Please consult your doctor or dietician before making any changes to your diet.

Food for Thought:

We must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right. Nelson Mandela

Please do share your thoughts. Your opinion matters!