Microwave Paneer Cheese Rolls!

>>  Saturday, January 31, 2009

Well I had lot of plans for making something interesting and elaborate in microwave this month for my Microwave Easy Cooking event hosted by dear Raji. She did send a gentle threatening mail, saying afterall its my event, and I got to send her an entry...Ok, I know I have been kind of held up with lot of other things, that I hadn't been able to do things that I planned. I guess it happens to the best of us, so I can be excused. But how can I ignore her note, knowing well I got to pinch in!

Anyway brainwave for this roll came from the fact that Peddu loves bread and I was kneen on introducing him to Cheese. I had already given Paneer cubes and he liked it. When I show him bread, he is ready to eat it anytime. That is his love for bread. And he loves Jam and Sauce. Chinnu doesn't like neither. Konda loves both. Well I have a choice I know, so I decided to do this roll, that I normally do with either Jam or Potatoes.

Coming a bit early home today, I went along to pick them from school. The boys were elated seeing me, and we all happily took a ride back home. I knew I had to do something nice for them to munch on, so decided to do this immediately. Its very simple and there is really no recipe for this. You can let your imagination take charge!

Ingredients Needed:

Fresh Bread slices - 4
Cheese cube -1
Paneer - 150 gms
Salt to taste
Chili powder - 1/4 tsp
Pepper powder - a pinch
Oil - 1 tsp
Butter/ Ghee - 1 tsp

Method to prepare:

Fresh bread works out fine for this, as you need to roll them out flat using the rolling pin. Trim the ends if you must, most times I leave them on.

In a microwave bow, crumble the paneer, add the salt, spice powders, Oil and micro for 20 secs. The paneer will get soft but well mixed with spices.

Once you have the bread all rolled out plain, top it with the paneer and grated cheese. From one end, roll it tight, covering the paneer.

Brush the bread with ghee, micro on wire rack for 1 min.

Serve hot with sauce!

Peddu loved this a lot, am sure I am going to experiment a lot with the stuffing to suit toddlers

Sending this to Raji @ Rak's Kitchen, who is hosting the MEC themed on Paneer this month. Sorry Raji for such a late entry, hope you like this and make it for your lil one!


Introducing pulses or dals to infants or toddlers ~ Tadka Dal!

>>  Saturday, January 10, 2009

I know mothers with infants and toddlers will surely retort to this dal every other day. When my daughter was 6 months old, Dad said it was time to introduce dal to her diet. Since she was the first baby at home, we were all very apprehensive on her intake and the food we give. Of course the feeling never changes. But with the twins, I was able to fall back on our experience. As Amma was cooking my daughter's lunch most of time, she created her own dal which my daughter used to love very much. We started introducing the dal water or the water in which the lentils are cooked, at about 6 months. Then slowly we introduced well mashed dals mixed with ghee and rice together. This was her lunch for many months. Then carrots, potatoes and beans were introduced slowly.

With infants, you should first introduce a little, see if they like it and then make it a part of their meals. You can give it as a mixed vegetable or as a single one at a time.The dal that Amma used to make for Konda, the same one that we latter gave to the twins, was the Tadka dal. Its a simplest way of cooking the toor dal and then seasoning it with few other ingredients. The resultant one is a perfect one to introduce a baby too. One just has to start with the basic one and improvise on it as the baby grows. I can still remember the way Konda's dal evolved!

Amma introduced every spice in a span of few months. It was a gradually improvement, which gives you time to understand your baby's taste and preference. First you start with just plain rice, well mashed with ghee and dal water. Pressure cook the Toor dal with lots of water. Just take the water alone and mix with rice. This can be given for a week or so, based on the baby's preference.

Till my kids were almost 18 months, this is how we did this dal.

Pressure cook 1 cup of Toor dal with 3 cups of water with a pinch of Turmeric and Asafetida.
Heat a tsp of oil in a kadai, add a pinch of mustard, then add few chopped onions. Once they sautéed well, add half chopped tomatoes.
Then add the cooked dal with 1 cup water. Bring to boil, add salt to taste.

You can add little of Cumin seeds and then slowly include 1/2 tsp chili powder as the baby grows.

Now my sons are 26 months and pretty much eat most of the dishes that we make at home. Still we fall back on this dal at times. They also carry a packed lunch box.

Tadka dal gets its name by the process of doing the Tadka, which means seasoned dal.

Tadka Dal

Toor dal - 1 cup
Water - 3 cups
Turmeric a pinch
Asafetida a pinch

For Seasoning

Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Onions - 1 small (very little)
Tomatoes - 1 small
Red Chili - 2 long
Salt to taste
Oil - 1 tsp
Tamarind - 1 small piece.
Curry leaves - few

Method to prepare:

Pressure cook the dal till it is almost 90% cooked. Keep the dal aside and wash the cooker and heat with oil.

Splutter mustard, cumin seeds along with broken chilies, curry leaves. Sauté well. Then add the chopped onions, fry till its done. Then add the tomatoes. Cook for a minute.

Then add the cooked dal, enough water, along with salt and tamarind piece. Cover and pressure cooker for another 2 whistles or till the dal is well cooked.

Check to see if the dal is thin. When you serve the kids, remove the tamarind piece, chilies and mix with well mashed rice with ghee.

The way I normally do is, take the rice when its real hot, mash it with ghee. The aroma that comes out of this combo is awesome. Add the dal to the rice and mix well. The consistency should be thin, else the kids might have difficulty eating.

The above lunch box is what I sent my boys. I am planning to track and record what I send my kids so that it becomes easy for mothers with the same problem. Of course, this is a typical South Indian Lunch Box, but very suitable for any region!

It will be most interesting to know what you pack for your kid! Do share, I can have any many ideas as I can!

Sending this to Sunshinemon's FIC event, this month's being yellow!


Diabetes | What is Diabetes Mellitus? ~ An Introduction and a general note!

>>  Wednesday, January 7, 2009

I would like to introduce my father Dr. Nagarathnam Jetty, MBBS,DPH,DIH,FIAOH.

He specialized in Public Health and Occupational medicine. Additionally, he has been in-charge for AIDS and other WHO activities in Central Government sector, India. He is also a social activist apart from leading many organizational activities. He is a recipient of many awards, including President award which he received from Dr. Abdul Kalam.

When I started this blog, one of my intentions was to share his ideas and experience in handling certain common aliments that can be prevented with care and good eating habits. So first on the list is to focus on Diabetes. Diabetes needs awareness and this series is aimed at bringing that to core. The focus will be taking care and living with Diabetes, with special recipes and menu to help tackle Diabetes.

Feedback and suggestions are most welcome!

An Introduction:

With the advent of Modern Medicine, mankind has seen many things in progress. This includes eradication and control of certain diseases, relief of pain and suffering (reduction of morbidity), prevention of diseases and premature death and increased longevity.

Once a creature including man, is born, it has to die, but with medicine, we want to give a healthy life in between, devoid of disease and morbidity. Scientists and doctors from the beginning have been doing research, experiments and discoveries and inventions towards this goal. and they have been greatly successful.

With the vast improvements in the field of medicine, we could now eradicate certain diseases and achieve control over some. Addition of new drugs, techniques and biomedical equipments can now provide better health.

From a mere 37 years of Life expectancy at the time of Independency of India, we have come a long way to achieve the present level of 66 years. There are developed countries like Japan, where we have 85 years of life expectancy. If you consider the situation in India, out of the 66 years of life expectancy, the healthy life expectancy is only 53 years, which means that a period of 13 years a man has to make visit to the hospitals for medical care.

As we are living longer we many develop chronic diseases which can also be called life style diseases, like Diabetes, Hypertension, Heart Disease, Cancer and psychiatric problems. The major contributing factors for all the above diseases can be Obesity, lack of exercise, stress, food habits, smoking, pollution etc.

Diabetes and Hypertension has been increasing all over the world and India is definitely leading in the incidence. Food and food habits have a definite role in the process. In most of the developed and developing countries, the food availability has improved and consumption pattern has also changed. The incidence of obesity is increasing in all societies and it has reached almost 30% in certain society.

Food habits have changed and are continuously changing through the world. Junk foods are made available easily. With the improvement in Television and print media, we find habits and variety of foods traveling far and wide. Today it has become a fascination to know and try the diet and recipes of other societies and countries. Every magazine is seen publishing articles on new recipes and most TV Channels are broadcasting separate programs on cooking.

Today eating places, hotels and restaurants have become more and eating habits are fast changing. New recipes are introduced at hotels and at homes everyday. Recipes of all cultures are available in all countries. When a new recipe is introduced either at a eatery joint or at home, the medically important factors like calorie content, fat content, vitamins, minerals are neither considered nor thought to be important. Only the tastes and appearance and acceptability to customers and in case of house it is captive guinea pigs only matters.

In the coming weeks, the topics will cover How to diagnose. To take precautions, Dietary habits, Life style practices.


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