WATERMELON BLUEBERRY COTTAGE CHEESE SALAD WITH CUCUMBERS

I wanted to create a refreshing salad that would cool you off without the need for ice cubes.  It’s starting to get hot and steamy here which makes me crave all the watermelon and cold cucumbers I can find.

It’s been so hot here the only thing I’ve wanted to eat is my Watermelon salad.
Did you know that Watermelon is 92% water and eating it keeps the body hydrated? This Watermelon and Cucumber salad with basil Lemon dressing are perfect in this hot weather as light lunch/ dinner. It’s simple, refreshing and big in flavour

My husband and I love salads. And I always try to make a new combination of salads every time. So here I present a cool combination of salad to beat the heat.

Refreshing and easy, Watermelon Blueberry Cottage cheese  Salad with Cucumbers is the side dish you’ll want at every meal.
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INGREDIENTS:
2 cups large diced watermelon
1/4 cups blueberries ( Here I used dried blueberries )
1 English cucumber cut into chunks
1/2 cup Cottage Cheese ( paneer) diced
1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
1 tablespoon Lemon juice
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup olive oil
kosher salt
fresh ground pepper
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INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a large bowl, add the watermelon, blueberries, cucumber, Cottage Cheese and basil. Toss to combine.picsart_06-09-058282747625511571277.jpg
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the Lemon juice, honey and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat.
    Serve immediately.

    NOTES:

  • Salad can be made up to 8 hours in advance. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container until ready to serve.
  • You can use fresh blueberries, cranberries and cherries too.

    If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment below or take a photo and tag me on Instagram with #AsthasKitchen

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RAW MANGO LAUNJI (AAM KI LAUNJI)

Do you guys like to have your Indian meal with some chutney or pickle on the side? Ever since I can remember, we always had some or the other chutney on our table for lunch. And yes there was always pickle on the table too. My Dadi  (grandmother) made the best Raw mango pickle and I was so obsessed with it as a child. She also made delicious Mirchi pickle, lemon pickle and so much more…Jadu hai unke hatho me.
That habit of eating pickle and chutney has stayed with me and I still find my meals incomplete without a side of them. I am freed of making pickle at home since my dadima since my dadi send me all kind of achars every year.
This dish is very close to my heart and it always brings out feelings of nostalgia of how we used to fight for it back when we were kids.
 I have always wanted to try this recipe to impress my bhua & my brothers and prove to them that I have inherited the magic of taste from my grandma.
I am so happy to have nailed it. Yoo-hoo!!
Hope you all enjoy my recipe.Do try & let me know.
INGREDIENTS :
6,7  raw mangoes(light, riped and peeled)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons panchporan, or use an equal amount of fennel, cumin, mustard, fenugreek and onions seeds
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder, or to taste
Salt(to taste)
1/4 cup granulated white sugar, +1-2 tablespoons as needed
1/3 cup water
INSTRUCTIONS:
  1. Wash and peel the mangoes and then Set them aside.
  2. Heat oil in a pan on medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add panch phoron (the 5 spice mix) to it and let the seeds sizzle for a few seconds.
  3. Then add in the cut mango slices and toss to combine well with the seasoning.
  4. Add in the turmeric powder, garam masala, red chilli powder and salt. Toss to combine until all the mango pieces are well coated with the masala. Cook for 1-2 minute.
  5. Then add in the sugar and mix well.
  6. Add water and mix well. Cover the pan with a lid and let it all cook for around 10 minutes on medium heat.
  7. After 10 minutes, the mangos will be soft. At this point, increase the heat and let it all simmer for another minute or so until the chutney thickens slightly.
  8. Remove pan from heat and allow it to cool. The chutney will thicken more as it cools down.
NOTES:
  • Adjust sweetness and spice levels in this chutney to taste. Use more sugar if you like sweet chutneys and more spice if you like spicy chutneys.
  • You may use jaggery in place of sugar if you want.
  • If you do not have sag ki Keri (slightly ripened mango)  then you can try it with raw mango by cooking it, taking 2-3 whistles in the cooker.
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KERI KA ACHAAR / RAW MANGO CHILLI PICKLE ( DADI’S RECIPE)

Wishing you all a happy #AchaarDay
I celebrated #achaarday to celebrate the vastness of India and it’s culture. Every home makes a different achaar, every person will make the same achaar differently .sabke hatho ka swad achaar me alag alag aata hai, aur dusre ke ghar ka achaar jayada bhata hai .This is what India is about.

I made Keri ka Achaar from my Dadi’s recipe.I tried my best ki Dadi ke hatho ka jadu chal jaye ..

Here’s my favourite mango pickle without which my daily meals would be incomplete .

INGREDIENTS : 

Raw mango 1 cup Chopped

Oil filtered1/4 cup ( You can use Mustard oil too)

Fennel seeds (saunf) 1 1/2 tablespoons

Salt 3 1/2 teaspoons

Split mustard seeds (rai ki dal) 2 teaspoons ( I used rai and crushed in the mixture )

Red chilli powder 2 tablespoons

Asafoetida a pinch

Green chilli chopped 1/4th cup
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INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Heat oil in a non-stick pan till it starts to smoke. Set aside to cool.
  2. Cut mangoes into quarters, remove the tender seeds, then cut into smaller pieces and put into a large bowl.
  3. Crush fennel seeds and Mustard seeds.
  4. Add salt,  crushed spices, asafoetida (heeng ) red chilli powder,  Raw mangoes and green chillies and mix well.
  5. When the oil is cooled add half of it and mix.
  6. Transfer into a porcelain or glass jar and add the remaining oil so that all the mango pieces are well covered.
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STRAWBERRY SPINACH SALAD

This simple recipe is a celebration of summers bounty in the most amazing salad you will ever eat. Fresh crisp spinach salad is taken to another level with bursts of sweetness from fresh strawberry.

It is tossed in Lemon dressing and topped with crunchy walnuts and crumbled paneer.

The sweet taste of strawberry pairs perfectly with the tangy lemon dressing. I have used lemon dressing in this Strawberry Spinach Salad, but you can use a salad dressing of your choice.
You can use balsamic vinaigrette dressing too.

Perfect for everyone also for any time of the day. You can have this crunchy in your lunch.

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INGREDIENTS:

1 Cup chopped Spinach
1/2 Cup Sliced strawberries
1 tbsp chopped walnuts
¼ Cup paneer 1/ 2 tsp seasme seeds

LEMON & HONEY DRESSING:
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp Honey
1 Tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

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INSTRUCTIONS:
  1. Whisk together Lemon juice, honey, extra virgin olive oil and salt and pepper.
  2. Toss the spinach leaves and strawberries with ¼ cup of dressing.
  3. Divide the spinach and berries amongst two plates and sprinkle each with 2 tablespoons Walnuts and 2 tablespoons Paneer Enjoy!
  4. I used a small fondant cutter to cut paneer and strawberries in a heart shape.
  5. Makes 2 small or One large salad.
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NOTES:

You can also use nuts of your choice, try Almonds in place of walnuts, also you can use a combination of almonds and walnuts too.

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STRAWBERRY COULIS / SAUCE

A very simple recipe but filled with deliciousness… Versatile uses… On your ice cream or waffles or cakes/muffins or bread or chapati or tart …. Just keep licking it… It’s soooooo yummy…
Serve this coulis with a kick on ice cream, pancakes or cheesecake or tarts.
I hope you give this recipe a try and enjoy it as much as we do. Have a great day folks!
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INGREDIENTS
200 g Strawberries
8-10 Tsp Sugar
2 Tsp Corn Flour
1/2 Cup Water
1 Tsp lemon juice.
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Clean and wash the hulled strawberries.
  2. Put them in a food processor and puree it coarsely, that is, don’t make too smooth
  3. Transfer this coarse Puree to a pan.
  4. Add sugar and cook on medium heat for 2-3 minutes.5fa6c0fd-a4aa-46c6-8e7b-f9e9cd7e6b68
  5. Dissolve corn flour in water and add to the above mixture.08ee2c4b-4a7a-4742-a02a-3cb502563f11
  6. Keep stirring and cook for 4-5 minutes till the sauce/ coulis becomes slightly thick.
  7. Lastly, mix lemon juice and take off from the gas.
  8. Let it cool.
  9. Use as desired.
  10. Store in a glass bottle in the refrigerator
If you like this easy strawberry preserve recipe, then try making at home before the fruit goes out of season and give that extra love on your desserts and ice creams. Share your feedback with me in comments below. Your views are valuable to us!
NOTES
  • Hulled Strawberries mean that the green leafy top is being removed.
  • The quantity of sugar may vary depending on the sweetness of strawberries.
  • Don’t make it very thick as it thickens on cooling also.
  • You can puree it smooth in the blender too.
  • Lemon juice is added to give shiny texture to the coulis.
  • Remains good for 8-10 days in the refrigerator.
  • Thank you for visiting Astha’s Kitchen. I would love to hear your feedback. 

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BEETROOT WALNUT RAITA

This is a healthy, nutritious and beautiful raita. When I saw the colour of the beetroot raita..the first word I uttered was- WOW.

The curd is a very good source of vegetarian protein. Beetroot reduces toxic cells from the blood and also fights inflammation. Both beetroot and curd help in lowering the blood pressure

Beetroot is my favourite and because of its nutritional values, I’ve always wanted to use it in my recipes.
Walnut has never been my bowl of dry fruits yet I used it here for it is highly nutritious.
My kids simply loved it!

The goodness of beetroot with the crunchiness of walnut in this raita makes it a unique and must try the recipe .

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INGREDIENTS :

1 tablespoon beetroot puree
8 -10walnuts
1/2 cup yoghurt
1/2tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp roasted cumin (jeera)powder
salt to taste
1tsp sugar
4-6 mint leaves
Beetroot slices for decoration

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INSTRUCTIONS :
  1. Heat sufficient water in a non-stick pan.add walnuts and blanch them. Remove from heat, cool and roughly chop.PicsArt_11-20-06.51.31.jpg
  2. Mix together yoghurt, beetroot puree, chopped walnut, chilli powder, cumin powder, sugar, salt in a bowl.PicsArt_11-19-08.58.31.jpg
  3. add mint leaves, mix well and refrigerate to chill.
  4. Garnish with beetroot slices cut into the heart shape and chopped walnuts.

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NOTES :

I have not tempered the raita. If you would like to add more flavour, you could temper it.

You can add bell peppers too for crunchiness.

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