Good nutrition does not always have to be about eating healthy foods while sacrificing taste and enjoyment. By choosing the right ingredients, it is definitely possible to arrive at a point where health and flavour intersect – in a delightful manner. The recipe we have selected today is a good example of this aspect. It combines the health and nutrition benefits of beetroot and cold-pressed Mustard Oil with the delightful warmth and fullness of carefully selected spices to create a dish that you can tuck into without any pangs of guilt.
Beetroot is very good for your heart – and in fact, your entire cardiovascular system. It is rich in folate (Vitamin B9) which is known to keep cells healthy, protect blood vessels from getting damaged, and reduce the risks associated with heart disease and stroke. It also lowers blood pressure and enhances the functioning of the immune system. Interestingly, cold-pressed Mustard Oil also does all this – and more. It is a cooking medium that is good for the heart, blood pressure, cholesterol, digestion and immunity. It is also proven to reduce the risks of cardiovascular disease (CVD), hypertension and stroke. Today’s recipe leverages this formidable combination of beetroot and mustard oil; in fact, it also uses mustard seeds to accentuate the overall “Mustard Experience”.
The dish that we are making is a Beetroot Curry prepared in a north Indian style. Here are the ingredients that you will require.
Beetroot (Chukandar): 3
Onion: 1, medium-sized
Green Chillies: 3
Yellow Lentils (Moong Dal): 30 grams
Mustard Oil: 4 tablespoons
Mustard Seeds (Rai): 1 teaspoon
Cumin (Jeera) Seeds: 1 teaspoon
Cumin (Jeera) Powder: 1 teaspoon
Turmeric (Haldi) Powder: Half a teaspoon
Sesame (Til) Seeds: 1 tablespoon
Coriander (Dhania) Powder: 1 teaspoon
Coriander (Dhania) Leaves: 2 tablespoons
Salt: to taste
The quantities mentioned above are for two servings. Adjust the quantities proportionately to suit the number of servings that you require.
Wash and peel the outer skin of the beetroot and discard the peeled skin. Then finely chop the beetroot – or better still, grate it. During the chopping or grating process, the beetroot will release a lot of juice. Carefully collect the juice and keep it aside. We will be using it during the cooking process.
Soak the yellow lentils for around 30 minutes in water. Then drain the water and keep the yellow lentils aside.
Peel, wash and chop the onion into small pieces.
Chop the green chillies.
Coarsely chop the coriander leaves.
Heat the Mustard Oil in a pan on a High flame. After some time the oil will reach its smoking point and streams of aromatic white smoke will rise from the surface of the hot oil. When this happens, reduce the flame to Medium. Your oil is now ready and you can start the cooking process.
Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds and sesame seeds to the hot oil and sauté till the seeds start to splutter.
Next, add the onion, green chillies and salt to taste. Stir to mix all the ingredients well.
Now add the beetroot along with the juice that you had kept aside. Also add the yellow lentils and turmeric powder, and cook till the lentils are done. (You may add a little water to cook the lentils properly but make sure that all the water evaporates.)
Next, add the cumin powder and coriander powder, and continue cooking till all the moisture evaporates.
Finally, add the chopped coriander leaves and stir to mix well. After a minute or so, turn the flame off.
Your traditional north Indian Beetroot Curry is now ready. Serve it hot with chapatti or roti. Like we said earlier, this is one of those amazingly flavoursome dishes which you can eat to your heart’s content without worrying about health issues. So enjoy!
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