Healthy Desi Chicken Tikka Wraps

It is of utmost importance to eat healthy, especially in Ramadan, when our bodies need the best foods to get the best of the nutrients.

I have been trying to eat healthy as much as possible since the last two Ramadan and alhamdulillah I am able to see results. I am feeling much better and able to to do a lot and not feel lazy and lethargic like I used to before.

Full of fresh flavors, these semi homemade wraps that I made for my family were a hit. They make a fun change from regular dinner fare. The parathas were store brought, and the chicken tikka were prepared and frozen the week before Ramadan. So I only just had to assemble the wraps and serve them for dinner. The chicken tikka was baked using a little bit of olive oil. These wraps are healthy and provide your body with good nutrients.

Chicken Tikka Wraps

Ingredients:

Parathas – 8
Chicken Tikka – 6 cups
Olives – 1 cup
Avocado – 2, diced
Tomatoes – 2, diced
Romaine or leaf lettuce, shredded – 2 cups
Sriracha Hot Sauce or any other hot sauce – to taste
Whipped Yogurt – 8-10 tbsp
Lemon/lime juice

Method:

Divide the chicken, and everything else between each wrap, squeeze over the lime juice, then fold over one end to tuck in, and roll up to serve.

A few Ramadan Tips:
~ Chew your food well before you swallow
~ Eat a Multi-vitamin with your meals

Luv,
Mona

Healthy Ramadan Meal – Baked Chicken with Vegetables, Couscous and Tatziki

We desi people tend to eat unhealthy especially during the month of Ramadan. We should all be making a great effort to cook healthy meals for our family and take care of our loved ones instead. Inshallah from this Ramadan onwards, I will posting healthy meal ideas for Iftaar and Suhoor. Keep watching this space for more healthy recipes and meal ideas to come.

The following recipe is just something I made on a whim. It is easy, healthy, and makes a perfect meal for ramadan.

Baked Chicken with Vegetables, Couscous and Tatziki

Chicken Legs/thighs pieces – 12-15 pieces
Black Pepper powder – 1/4 tsp
Salt – 1 tsp
Turmeric – 1/4 tsp
Onion – 1, roughly chopped
Ginger garlic paste – 1 tbsp
Mixed Chopped Vegetables – 4 cups, carrots, grape tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, olives, green beans, broccoli, radish, baby bok choy etc
Garam masala – 1/2 tsp
Olives – pitted, 1/4 cup
Olive oil – 2 tbsp
for Couscous:
Couscous – 1 cup
Olive oil – 1 tbsp
Tomato paste/Pasta sauce (store bought) – 1 tbsp
Fresh leaves and Cilantro – 1 tbsp, finely chopped
Water/Chicken/Vegetable stock – 2 cups, very hot
Salt – 1 tsp
for Tatziki
Cucumber – 1/2, peeled and grated
Garlic clove – 1, mashed
Salt – 1/2 tsp
Fat-free Yoghurt – 1 cup
Juice of half lemon
Fresh mint – 4-5 leaves, finely chopped

Ingredients:
Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a mixing bowl bowl, add chicken, black pepper powder, turmeric, salt, ginger garlic paste, onion, garam masala, olives, olive oil and mix well. In a baking dish with high sides, add the vegetables in a layer. Over them add the marinated chicken again a layer. Cover with aluminium foil and bake for 35-45 minutes covered, then the next 15-20 minutes uncovered until the chicken is juicy and done.
Add pasta sauce/tomato paste, chopped herbs, olive oil, and water/chicken stock in a kettle and let it come to a boil. Add couscous in a bowl. Once the water/chicken stock is boiling, pour over the couscous in the bowl and cover with a tight lid. Keep adise and let rest for 10 minutes. Then fluff with fork.

Using a box grater, coarsely grate the cucumber. Sprinkle it with a 1/2 tsp of salt. Let rest for 10 minutes. Then squeeze and scrunch with clean hands to get rid of the excess salty water. Add it to a bowl. Also add yogurt, mashed garlic, lemon juice, chopped mint leaves and salt. Tatziki is ready.

In a serving dish, add the couscous in a layer. Top it with baked chicken and vegetables. Serve along with tatziki on the side.

Healthy Desi Meals Ideas for Iftaar/Suhoor:
For Iftaar
~ Chanay ki Dal – Lemony Boiled Split Bengal Gram 
~ Jaam ka Kachalu – Guava Chaat 
~ Fruit Chaat – Fruit Salad
~ Baked Samosas – bake the samosas instead of deep frying
~ Ragda Cutlet – alter the recipe by not adding any oil to cook the onions, just saute them in a pan until they get a nice brown color; bake the potato cutlets instead of shallow frying; also do not sweeten yogurt
~ Pita Pockets made using Sheekh Kebabs 

Luv,
Mona

Chicken Tikka Pizza

A while back I got a request from hubby dear that I am not preparing specials that often as I used to before babyjaan happened.

Chicken Tikka Kawabs – Murgh Tikka

So one weekend I adorned my chef hat and got onto making something especially to please him. I had prepared chicken tikka a day earlier and there was some leftover. The idea to make a pizza immediately popped in my mind and I am glad he thoroughly enjoyed what I made for him.

Chicken Tikka Pizza

Ingredients:

All purpose flour – 4 cups
Yeast – 1 packet – 7 gms
Warm water – to make a dough
Salt – 2 tsp
Sugar – 1 tsp
Olive oil – 4 tbsp
(Store-bought) Pasta Sauce [or] Tomato Chutney – 3/4 cup
Sun dried tomatoes – 1/2 cup, cut into small pieces
Chicken Tikka – 1 cup, cut into small pieces
Green/Red Bell Peppers – 1/2 cup,
Green Olives – 1/2 cup, sliced
Mozzarella Cheese – grated, 1 cup

Method:

1. In a cup of warm water, add one packet of yeast and mix using a spoon. Add salt and sugar and a cup of flour and mix to make a wet dough. Pour olive oil all over the dough. Cover with a wet towel and keep aside for an hour. Later you will notice that the dough has almost doubled in size.
2. Add the remaining flour to the dough and add water as needed to make a soft dough. Do not work the dough a lot. Mix it lightly ans make sure it is soft. Let it rest for 30 minutes while you prepare the toppings.
3. Preheat oven to 450 F.

4. Line a large rimmed baking sheet using waxed paper. Dust lightly with flour all over it. Drop the ball of dough over it and working with your fingers spread the dough so that it completely covers the entire baking sheet. Slather the pizza with the pasta sauce or chutney whatever you are using, then add all the toppings spreading them all over the dough. Lastly add the grated cheese and transfer the baking sheet into the oven. Your pizza will be ready in about 20 minutes.

For Thin crust pizza: use a rolling pin and roll the dough to achieve the thinness you want. Then transfer the rolled dough to a baking sheet and add the toppings.

FREEZE: To freeze, set dough balls on a plate (they should not touch); freeze until firm, about 1 hour. Then freeze in a resealable freezer bag for up to 3 months. If you plan to use it in a recipe that calls for half a batch, divide it before freezing. Thaw overnight in refrigerator.

Luv,
Mona

Colourful Pasta

There’s one thing about pasta that I like a lot. It can be made in a thousand different ways changing the flavours with every ingredient you wish to add to it. While preparing pasta you can experiment a lot, with whatever you like, and it gets ready instantly for a delicious heartful meal.

This recipe which I make is loved by everyone in my home. You can substitute meat in this recipe with the same amount of chicken breast pieces, or omit both and make it a vegetarian pasta dish.

Serves : 4

Colourful Pasta

Ingredients:

Lamb/Veal meat – 110 gms, cubed into bite size pieces
Fusilli Pasta – 400 gms
Ripe Tomatoes – 2, large, chopped finely
Canned Tomato paste – 1 cup
Carrots – 2, washed peeled and sliced
Red capsicum – 1, large
Green beans/Binees – 1 cup, washed and chopped
Canned Black beans – 1 cup, drained and gently washed
Salt – to taste
Red chilli powder – 1 tsp
Turmeric – 1/4 tsp
Garam masala – 2 tsp
Yellow Onion – 1, small, sliced
Canola Oil – 4 1/2 tbsp
Parmesan Cheese – 1 cup, Grated (optional)
Black Olives – 1 cup, sliced and deseeded (optional)

Method:

  • Put a pressure cooker on heat and add half a tablespoon of oil to it. Add the washed and cubed lean meat pieces and stir until no longer red. Pour a little water and pressure cook till it becomes soft. You can even use some left over meat. Just shred it into bite size pieces. Remove the meat with all its juices to a bowl once done.
  • Take a pan and add two teaspoon oil to it. Fry the cut carrots, capsicum, french beans individually for 3-4 minutes each and remove in an another bowl.
  • In a sauce pan, add the remaining oil and put it on heat. Add the sliced onions to it and let them turn translucent. Add the finely chopped tomatoes and cover the lid for a few minutes till the tomatoes have become soft. Add the tomato paste and stir to mix. Add salt, chilli powder, garam masala and turmeric and stir again. Now add the meat pieces with all its juices to the tomato mixture and let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Meanwhile cook Fusilli according to instructions and reserve half cup of the water in which the Fusilli was cooked. Drain and keep aside.
  • Add the drained pasta with its reserved water, the drained black bean and the sautéed vegetables to the tomato mixture. Reduce the heat to medium low and let it cook uncovered for 5 more minutes.
  • Serve immediately into individual plates sprinkled with grated parmesan cheese and sliced olives on top.

Luv,
Mona