The current lockdown scenario, enforced to curb the spread of COVID-19, poses quite a challenge for nearly all families, what with having to cook at home every single day. Moreover, restrictions on travel and public gatherings make it difficult to procure a variety of unique and exotic ingredients, that are required to prepare traditional Indian delicacies. This invariably results in stocking up the pantry with only the basic commodities like rice, atta, ghee, dal, apart from common seasonal fruits and vegetables that are currently available in grocery stores.
And on certain days, there is that total reluctance to cook, out of sheer boredom or just plain laziness. Yes, not only is it a herculean task for single young adults or working couples to get out of their comfy couches, to dish out a simple meal for themselves, but even stay-at-home moms just don’t want to step into the kitchen anymore. Also Read: Comfort Food Sounds Boring? Add These Tasty, Healthy Toppings For A Nutritious Makeover
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Well, the simple solution is to make the job of cooking fast and effortless, so it doesn’t seem like an elaborate, mundane chore anymore. And if you’re wondering how to shorten the food preparation process, look no further. We bring you three unbelievably easy recipes, involving very few ingredients each – a perfect menu for the day - breakfast, lunch and dinner. These customary desi recipes are also wholesome and nourishing, supplying all essential nutrients including carbs, fats, proteins, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, to immensely uplift overall wellbeing.
Breakfast: Green Onion Uthappam
1 cup salted dosa batter
2 medium onions, finely chopped
2 cups coriander leaves, thinly cut
Take the dosa batter in a large bowl, add the onions and coriander leaves and mix thoroughly.
Heat a tawa on medium flame, pour the batter and spread as thick, circular layer.
Spread a bit of gingelly oil around the edges of the circle-shaped batter, cook fully on one side and flip it over, to steam the other side as well.
Enjoy the green onion uthappam hot with sambar and chutney, with some milk or coffee, for a hearty breakfast meal.
Dosa batter is made using urad dal, which is packed with proteins, vital for tough, strong muscles. Onions contain negligible levels of sodium and are fat-free, thereby augmenting heart function. Vast reserves of flavonoid antioxidants in coriander leaves help in arresting hair fall and promoting hair-root i.e. follicular growth. Also Read: Coriander Leaves: 5 Excellent Health Benefits Of Adding These Aromatic Leaves To Your Daily Diet
Lunch: Spicy Baked Potato
3 medium potatoes, peeled and cut
4 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp red chilli powder
Salt, as needed
In a vessel, add the olive oil, red chilli powder and salt to the potatoes and mix well.
Grease the bottom and sides of a baking tray and keep the spiced potato slices on it, spaced a bit apart.
Preheat oven to 360 degrees F/180 degrees C.
Place the tray with the potato pieces carefully inside the oven and bake for 30 minutes, until they turn crisp, soft and golden brown.
Relish the spicy baked potatoes for lunch, with tamarind rice, rasam rice or curd rice.
Potatoes offer plenty of calories and nutrient-dense complex carbohydrates, for instant energy to perform physical activities, as well as to fuel metabolism and enzyme functions in the body. Abounding in healthy unsaturated fats – PUFA and MUFA, olive oil assist in flexible movement of cardiac muscles, besides regulating blood pressure. Red chilli powder is loaded with capsaicin antioxidants, which lower the risk of cancer.
Dinner: Gobi Matar Masala
2 cups tomato-onion paste
1 cauliflower, chopped
½ cup boiled peas
Salt, as per taste
1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp coriander/dhania powder
In a pan, heat the tomato-onion paste on medium flame, add the cauliflower florets and cook for 5 minutes.
Transfer the boiled peas, along with salt, ginger-garlic paste, garam masala and coriander powder and warm in the pan for about 10 minutes, to allow all the flavours to blend in.
Serve the gobi matar masala hot, as a side for rotis, parathas and naans.
Tomatoes are a rich source of vitamin C, to bolster immunity and enrich skin texture. Being inherently high in vitamin B6, cauliflower improves brain function and maintains optimal nervous system activity. The profuse quantities of vitamins A and K in peas aid in enhancing vision, apart from sustaining red blood cell synthesis and bone strength.