Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Cherry chia jam

I found some lovely cherries at the market and ended up buying a few too many. Though we are loving eating them, I felt like making something using cherries. I already baked a cake last weekend so skipped that thought. Today morning we were having toast for breakfast and thought of jam and toast and that was it, cherry jam! :).

I have seen quite a few chia jam recipes doing the rounds so thought I'll give it a go too. Unlike a store bought jam, this one has very less sugar. Although the cherries I got were quite sweet, I wanted to make the jam a little sweeter so I have added some date syrup but you could use other sweetners or skip it completely. The jam takes hardly anytime to make. The only time consuming bit was the pitting of the cherries but you could just use pitted ones. 


250 gms cherries (pitted and roughly chopped)
3 tbsp chia seeds
1 tbsp organic date syrup
1 star anise (optional)


In a heavy bottomed pan, add the pitted cherries and star anise and cook for about 5-7 minutes till the cherries start to soften.

Remove the star anise and mash the cherries lightly with the back of a spoon. 

Add the date syrup and give it a mix. Take it off the heat and add the chia seeds. Spoon the jam into clean airtight jars and leave to set in the refrigerator, for at least an hour.

Smother a toast with the jam and eat! :)


Monday, 2 July 2018

Walnut and date protein balls

I like to keep healthy snack options around so I don't binge on something unhealthy. My go to snack is a few mixed nuts. My little one has started liking them too now. She is not a fan of walnuts but I want her to eat those too since they are a good source of omega 3. So I made these walnut and date balls today and she absolutely loved them and kept asking for more! These are quite filling so you won't end up overeating anyway but if you do, they are healthy and nutritious too. These are also refined sugar-free! I have added a little bit of date syrup to make it easy to blend and shape the balls but you could just use 3/4 cup dates instead and add a tsp of coconut oil if it isn't coming together.


1 cup walnuts
1/2 cup cashews
1 tbsp Chia seeds
1/2 cup pitted dates
1 tbsp 100% date syrup 
2 tsp raw cocoa powder


Add the walnuts, cashews, chia seeds, cocoa powder, dates and the date syrup to a food processor and blend until combined. Shape into balls and chill. You can also make them into bars - pat the mixture flat onto a baking tray, cool and cut into bars or bite size pieces.

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Roasted red pepper hummus (or houmous)

I don't remember the last time we bought hummus from the supermarket. I have always made it at home ever since I have realised how simple it is to make. I usually make a plain hummus (recipe here) to snack on with some veg or bread. You can also add different spices or veg while making hummus. I usually like adding cumin to my hummus and my current favourite is roasted red pepper hummus. Roasting the red pepper gives it a depth of flavour.  This tasted so good with some home made toasted bread!  

Try making hummus once, I bet you, you will never buy it again ever :)


1 400 gm can of chickpeas in water
1 red pepper, roughly diced
2 tsp tahini paste
1-2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp water (from the chickpea can)
Salt to taste
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil


Preheat the oven to 180 C. Place the diced red pepper on a baking tray. Drizzle with a little bit of oil and roast for 35- 40 mins. Check on them and toss them around halfway so they cook evenly.

In a food processor, add the can of chickpeas, the garlic cloves, tahini paste, lemon juice, salt, roasted pepper and about 2 tbsp of water from the chickpeas can. 

Turn the food processor on and pour in the oil slowly until it is combined. Check for seasoning.

Drizzle with some extra virgin oil before serving.


Thursday, 14 June 2018

Beetroot and coconut soup in a soup maker

I have been using my soup maker very often lately. I have tried different combinations and also just a simple tomato or a carrot soup, and they've all tasted delicious. Today felt like experimenting with beetroot. We don't really like eating it much but we do try to incorporate all vegetables in our diet and beetroot is said to be a good source of potassium and other minerals. This beetroot and coconut soup was so good, it had us going for second servings! Definitely a success! My Morphy Richards soup maker has become one of my favourite appliances now. :)


300 gms cooked beetroot, roughly chopped
3 tbsp fresh grated coconut
1 small onion, sliced
1-2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 litre vegetable stock
Salt and pepper to season


Heat the coconut oil in a pan. Fry the garlic and sliced onions until the onions are slightly brown.

Add the cooked beetroot, grated coconut along with the fried onions and garlic to the soup maker. Pour in the stock. Put the lid and select the mode. I like to set it on smooth mode.

Season with salt and pepper and serve with croutons.

* This is not a sponsored post

Thursday, 15 March 2018

Vegan Chocolate Brownies

Today morning our kitchen was smelling of these lovely chocolate brownies, which I baked for a bake sale organised for one of the charities I support. I decided to bake something vegan as some of my friends follow a plant-based diet. This was my first attempt at making vegan brownies and they went down a treat at the bake sale. So chuffed! :) 
I have used some coconut flour too in the recipe but you can use just plain flour. 


200 gms plain flour
50 gms of coconut flour
300 gms unrefined muscovado sugar
70 gms 100% unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 and 1/2 cups of boiling water
1/2 cup of cooking oil (I have used coconut oil)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup of walnuts, chopped
Desiccated coconut for sprinkling over (optional)


Preheat the oven to 180 C

In a large bowl. add the sugar and boiling water and combine. Add the vegetable oil, vanilla extract and salt and  mix well

Sieve in the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder to the wet mixture and using a whisk, mix it all together. I used an electric whisk

Pour the mixture into a 9x13 inch greased baking dish. Scatter the chopped walnuts and bake for 25-30 minutes. Insert a toothpick to check if it is cooked. 

Sprinkle over the desiccated coconut.  

Cool before cutting into pieces. 


Sunday, 21 January 2018

Peas pulao

Our Sunday mornings usually start early but today the little one decided to sleep longer and we all woke up quite late. We had a light breakfast but soon started to feel quite hungry. I remembered we had some stock leftover from the paella we made the other day and decided to use it to make a pulao! This is probably one of the quickest meals I have come up with. Didn't need any chopping and not much washing up either. And to top it all, it turned out tasty and the little one ate it very happily!  :)

I haven't added any chilli since I made it with my little one in mind, but if you prefer it to be spicy, add a fresh chilli after adding the cumin. 


1 and a 1/2 cup Basmati rice
2 cups vegetable stock (I used homemade vegetable stock. Stock cube or even just water is fine too)
1/2 cup frozen peas 
1/2 tsp cumin
1 bay leaf
3-4 cloves
8-10 peppercorns
1 piece of mace
2 tsp oil
Salt as per taste
Coriander to garnish


Wash the rice and soak it in cold water for 30 minutes.

Heat the oil in a pan, on medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and toss for about 30 seconds. Add the bay leaf, peppercorns, cloves and mace and toss for a minute.

Drain the rice and add to the pan. Give it a quick stir and then add in the frozen peas. Pour in the stock, add salt (note if using stock cube, check for taste and add salt only if needed) and bring to a boil. Once it starts to boil, reduce the heat to low and cover and cook for around 20 minutes or until the water is soaked up and the rice is done.

You could check on the rice after 15 minutes to make sure there is enough water. If it looks like the rice is almost done but there is a lot of water, cook uncovered.

Garnish with coriander and serve. :)

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