Main Dish

Chickpea Croquettes

I usually make my croquettes with leftovers–rice, beans, soy meat and whatever else I can find in the refrigerator. I also usually bake my croquettes. But this evening I didn’t have the time to bake; besides, my leftovers had disappeared.

So, I created this new recipe. I deep-fried these to save time–which means ten times the calories,  but also means at least triple the deliciousness.chick-pea-croquettes


2 15-oz cans chickpeas, rinsed and coarsely processed with 1/2 cup water
1  1/2 cup chickpea flour
1 cup finely chopped onions
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 cup veggie burger (Sanitarium Casserole Mince or Worthington Vegeburger*)
2 tsp Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda

Mix together. Shape into 3-inch logs. Deep fry till golden. I served mine with garlic stir-fried asparagus,  mashed potatoes, and  gravy.

*Morningstar Crumbles work well too. But they contain some egg white


Ragi Roti and Rajma Pyaz (Finger Millet Flatbread and Kidney Beans)

If you’re looking for healthful recipes, it doesn’t get better than this: this meal is vegan, gluten-free, and carb-free—with (possible) zero weight watcher freestyle points.



Unlike most Indian recipes for Rajma beans, this one doesn’t use red chili powder or turmeric. The main dominant flavor is onion (pyaz). This is big batch of beans. Without the turmeric this dish doesn’t have the Indian curry taste to it. So I save the leftovers to use as my base for a taco salad.

2 tsp—1/4 cup, oil (obviously, the less you use, the better it is for you; and the more you use, the tastier it is too)
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 cups finely chopped onions
1 Tbsp pressed garlic
1 1/2 Tbsp finely grated ginger
2 Tbsp coriander powder
3 cups chopped tomatoes
2 Tbsp tomato paste
4 green chillies, finely chopped
3 cups vegetable stock (or water)
1 cup chopped cilantro
3-4 cans red kidney beans, rinsed
salt to taste
2 tsp garam masala (every brand has its unique taste. This is the one I used)
1/8th cup dry fenugreek leaves (optional–called Kasthuri Methi at Indian Grocers)
1 Tbsp butter (optional)
1/2 cup fried onions (optional–I use the Indian variety because there isn’t as much batter; but you could use French’s too )

Heat as much or as little oil you want in a deep pot. Add cumin and stir for about 30 seconds. Add fresh onions and cook till every so slightly brown. (If you’re leaving out the oil, cook the cumin and onion in a little of the stock/water till slightly mushy.)

With heat on medium, add ginger and garlic. Stir for about a minute. Add fresh tomato and tomato paste, green chillies, half of the stock/water, and half of the cilantro. Cover and cook till tomatoes are soft and well cooked. Mash them up a bit.

Add beans, the rest of the stock/water, fenugreek leaves and the garam masala. If you like more of a gravy, use three cans of beans (I use four cans). Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for about 30 minutes or until it’s as thick as you like it–stir occasionally. Stir in the remaining cilantro. Cook for another 2 minutes. Turn off the stove, and add butter and fried onions.


Note: If these don’t turn out soft the first time, experiment with the heat setting on your stove till you get the magical one that’s right for the griddle you’re using. Even without butter or olive oil, mine were soft enough to roll into a burrito. I got 8 rotis.

1 dry measuring cup of water (Don’t use a liquid measuring cup because the ratio for water:flour is based on volume)
1 tsp oil
3/4 tsp salt
1 dry measuring cup of ragi (finger millet) flour
olive oil or butter (optional)

Bring water, oil, and salt to a boil.

Do this next step as quickly as possible (This all should take less than a minute): Turn down the stove as low as possible, add the flour to the boiling water, give it a quick stir, take off the stove, and keep stirring it all comes together in a Play Doh-like textured ball.

Cover the dough and let it rest for about five minutes. Pinching out about 1/8th cup or less of dough, use dry ragi flour and roll out as thin as possible. Keep the dough covered. Cook on a cast iron or non-stick griddle as you would whole wheat chapatis or roti–There are many videos on YouTube on how to cook roti. Here’s one–watch the last two minutes.

While still warm, lightly spread some olive oil or butter on one or both sides. (I didn’t use any on mine)


Curried Tuna Linguine

The older I get the less my body cooperates with dairy. So, I’ve been experimenting.

This recipe uses coconut cream, and the result is the creamy richness of an Alfredo sauce–with a twist of curry.


8 oz linguine, cooked al dente in salted water
½ cup oil
¼ cup chopped onions
2 cups fresh veggies, chopped (I used sweet peppers, asparagus, celery, and green peppers)
3 Tbsp chopped cilantro
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp Malliga Masala Red Chili Blend
1 can coconut cream
salt to taste
2 small cans of tuna, drained (about 10 to 12 oz in all)

Saute onions. When translucent, add rest of ingredients, except linguine and tuna. Bring to a gentle boil. Take care that veggies don’t overcook; they should be tender and crisp. Fold in linguine and tuna. Bring to boil and take off stove. Wait about 5 minutes before serving to allow coconut gravy to thicken


grapenuts and cottage cheese loaf

Yeah, I know, this looks like dog food. But it tastes really good. My meat-eating friend, Nicole, verified its deliciousness too. (Remembered to take a picture only after we all dug into it!)

2 cups Grapenuts cereal
2 cups cottage cheese
1 cup chopped nuts (I used walnuts)
2 eggs
1 tsp Italian seasonings
2 tsp minced garlic
1/4 cup oil
1 cup spaghetti sauce
1/2 cup grated cheese (optional)

Mix everything together, except the sauce and the cheese. Spread into greased casserole dish. Cover with foil. Bake 40 minutes, 350 degrees. Remove cover. Spread sauce. Sprinkle cheese. Bake another 10 minutes.

fyl’s unmeatloaf

Here’s our starch and protein coming out of the oven for dinner tonight: Scalloped Potatoes and my new creation–an unmeatloaf.  With a big green salad, it makes a great meal that’s so easy to fix.

3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
8 eggs
1 roll Ritz crackers, crushed
12 oz Morningstar crumbles, thawed
2 cups Special K cereal
1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup finely chopped onions
2 tsp Italian seasoning
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 1/2 cup spaghetti sauce

Mix together everything except spaghetti sauce. Pour into greased 9 x 12 pan. Bake 40 minutes in 350 degrees. Spread spaghetti sauce on top. Bake for another 5 minutes.


hot roast beef sandwich

slices of deli roast beef
shredded swiss cheese
french fried onions or caramelized onions
club sandwich rolls
mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, Sriracha sauce (all optional)

Spray some Pam on a hot non-stick pan.  Lay flat two slices of roast beef stacked, sprinkle Swiss cheese and onions. Repeat layers until you have the thickness you like. Lightly toast rolls. Spread one side of roll with any or all the condiments. Add roast beef. Done. Serve with roasted potatoes or french fries.

chicken nicole

The namesake of this recipe wanted a curry with which to impress her husband who loves to cook. So I promised her I’d come up with one. And here it is

2 to 3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into one-inch cubes
½ oil
1 cup chopped onions
1 cup chopped tomatos
2 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp grated ginger
2 tsp Malliga Masala Red Chili Blend
¼ cup sour cream
¼ cup finely chopped cilantro
¼ tsp ground cinnamon (optional)
¼ tsp ground cardamom (optional)
1/8 tsp ground cloves (optional)
salt to taste

Heat oil in a deep skillet. Saute onions till golden brown. Add tomatos, garlic, ginger, and Malliga Masala. Cover and cook on medium low heat till tomatos are well cooked. Remove from stove. Puree the onion-tomato mixture. Pour it all back into the skillet. Add rest of the ingredients and cook on low heat till chicken is done. (About 20 to 30 minutes). Serve over hot rice.

Note: It is really important to cook the chicken on low heat. The perfect chicken curry is never made with water. It gets its gravy from the natural liquid in the chicken and the vegetables.