In India, poha (rice flakes) is a staple breakfast in many households because it is quick to prepare. Just soak poha in water for fifteen minutes and it is ready. Poha is unique because rice is flaked in the husk and handmade following traditional methods. Poha is the name of the dish as well as the name for rice flakes in Hindi.
My Amma (mum) likes to make sure there is enough protein in each meal and this is one of her recipes where she uses poha the same way you would use rice in rice salad. It is a lovely, gluten free and vegan lunch dish.
One of the reasons I love winter is because you can make a hearty soup that warms the body and soul. You kind of feel good tucking into a bowl of wholesome soup because you know it is very nourishing. I love to experiment not only with different flavour combinations but also incorporate beans or lentils or grains for the protein.
When I was growing up I hated cooked carrots, felt that they have a smell and it is more pronounced on cooking. Luckily I got over that and carrots cooked or raw are absolutely delicious. The soup is a bit different in the sense that I cooked the lentils separately.
Did you know that the cultivation of millet dates back to
6000 years? The tiny golden grain has nearly 15% protein, B- complex vitamins,
minerals like iron and magnesium. Interestingly millet used to be referred to
as the grain of happiness and it contains tryptophan – an amino acid that
affects appetite, mood and sleep! It is gluten free, alkaline, easily digestible
and rich in fibre. Super food really!
I substitute millet in all recipes that call for couscous, because millet is packed with nutrients. Great for weekday lunch and if you use dairy free yoghurt for the sauce it will be completely plant based. In this recipe I use the florets only but please retain the tender leaves and stems for use in a stir fry.
1 large broccoli, washed and cut into 2cm florets
1 x 400g tin of chick peas, drained and rinsed
1 cup of hulled millet cooked as per instructions on packet
A generous handful of fresh coriander finely chopped
Steam or microwave the broccoli for 2 to 3 minutes depending
on the doneness required. Set aside to cool.
Once you cook the millet, remove to a large plate and allow
to cool. If you leave in a bowl or saucepan to cool, the millet may all stick
together and get clumpy.
Place millet in serving bowl. Mix in the broccoli and chick
peas, the red chilli, the lemon rind, salt and plenty of freshly ground pepper
along with lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil. Taste for seasoning, toss
the coriander leaves and serve with yoghurt sauce.
This is from Peter Gordon’s cookbook “A World in My Kitchen”
which is one of his earlier cookbooks. This is simple, earthy and nourishing so
have made it many a time not only just in winter but anytime I want a quick and
easy meal. All you need is some good crusty bread.