4.16.13

Pallavi Sharma is on a mission to help people rediscover Indian food – a lighter, organic and more healthy Indian food than some of us may be familiar with. Her line of kitchen-ready spice blends are an evolved version of the processed taco and burger seasonings so many of our mothers once relied on. Vegetarians looking for fresh and easy new dinner ideas should pay attention. We’re loving Pallavi’s spice blend made especially for lentils! Cooking doesn’t get any easier or more nutritious than this. Here’s Pallavi…

Indian cuisine is often associated with heavy, over-spiced, sleep inducing restaurant fare, but true, traditional Indian, it is anything but! Indian food comes from the land of yoga, and, at it’s core, it is just as healthy! While certain dishes can be complex and require a long list of spices,  “everyday” Indian food is quite simple.

There are only a few key ingredients needed for traditional Indian cooking: ghee (or oil), spices, and a vegetable or protein. Ghee has a high smoke point, is full of fat-soluble vitamins, and contains short-chain fatty acids which are easily metabolized. The widely used spices are turmeric (natural antibiotic), cumin (anti-oxidant), coriander (digestive), and cayenne (circulation promoter).

Here are some quick and easy tips to infuse ancient and healthful Indian cooking into your diet:

  • Try savory yogurt for a change. Grate cucumber into some Greek yogurt, and add a pinch of roasted cumin powder and cayenne powder.
  • For a protein rich salad, try mixing some grated carrots and sprouted mung dal. Dress with lemon juice, cilantro leaves and Thai green chili for an adventurous kick.
  • Dress up brown rice or quinoa by adding a bay leaf, 1 teaspoon cumin seeds and 1/4 cup peas.
  • Make your own chai: simply boil water with a teaspoon of grated ginger. Then add a teaspoon black tea, splash of milk, a small pinch of ground cinnamon and cardamom. Strain and serve!

To take the intimidation out of Indian cooking, I’ve launched a line of organic Indian small batch, recent-harvest seasoning blends. They take all the mystery out of cooking Indian. Try this recipe with one packet of my organic vegetable seasoning that won’t take you more than 15 minutes to make!

  • Indian Spiced Rainbow Chard Sauté

  • Ingredients

    Serves 4-6

    3 T ghee, extra-refined olive oil or veggie-broth
    2 cloves garlic
    ¾ lb rainbow chard, chopped

    1 packet Easy Indian Vegetable Seasoning

    or

    1 tsp coriander powder
    1 tsp cumin seeds
    1/4 tsp turmeric powder
    1/8 tsp cayenne powder

    salt to taste

  • Instructions

    Heat pan on medium and add ghee (or oil/veggie broth).
    Add garlic and sauté for one minute.
    Mix in spices and stir for 20 seconds taking care not to burn the spices.
    Add rainbow chard and coat gently in spice mixture.
    Cover and cook until chard is wilted, stirring occasionally (10-15
    minutes).
    Salt to taste and serve with naan, roti or tortilla and enjoy!

  • Win these spices!

    Win Pallavi's Easy Indian 6-pack of organic seasoning blends including a variety of flavors! Tell us what you like to do to pack antioxidant-rich Indian spices into your regular diet and be entered to win!

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Comments


  1. I just discovered mixing cumin and cayenne pepper into greek yogurt- which I now put on EVERYTHING!
    YUM!!

    kristin conforti | 04.16.2013 | Reply
  2. I like to saute zucchini and yellow squash with cumin seeds, cumin, curry powder, turmeric, cinnamon and a few other ingredients for a quick side dish. It’s good with brown rice or quinoa.

    Lauren | 04.16.2013 | Reply
    • I love Indian-style zucchini. If you like the taste of fennel seeds–mix them in with your other spices next time–it comes out particularly good with zucchini (a bit of tomato).

      Pallavi | 04.18.2013 | Reply
  3. turmeric and cumin in everything!

    Caroline | 04.16.2013 | Reply
  4. I love Indian food and the concept of organic spice mixes that are already blended for me! With such a variety to choose from, it would be nice to use a differet blend each day of the week.

    Shaina | 04.16.2013 | Reply
  5. I made an Indian pizza with this spice blend. Super easy!
    1. Cook according to directions with your favorite veggies. Let cool a little. (You can also do this with just your leftovers if you have any.)
    2. Using Trader Joe’s pizza dough, shape the dough into your pizza.
    3. Top pizza with your Easy Indian veggie dish and mozzarella cheese.
    4. Bake according to directions for the pizza dough.
    5. Enjoy and savagely protect your pizza!

    Krystin | 04.17.2013 | Reply
  6. Add it to couscous and cooked spinach

    trista | 04.17.2013 | Reply
  7. cumin and turmeric on roasted vegetables is the greatest!!

    Kelsey | 04.17.2013 | Reply
  8. I would like to add the seasoning to my vegs dishes. My go to sauteed vegs is usually garlic and onion so this would be nice to try and mix things up a little with a taste of india.

    Tricia L | 04.17.2013 | Reply
  9. Just tried this spice blend with kale and it was delicious!

    Sheryl | 04.18.2013 | Reply
  10. We eat Indian food almost everyday. But, I’ve been excited to start using the spices in other ways recently. Every night I make this turmeric drink:
    Hot water
    1tsp termeric
    Honey
    1tsp chili pepper
    Half lemon
    Grated ginger

    A great way to finish the day.

    Next, I’m trying a termeric at-home facial I heard about:)

    Natasha | 04.18.2013 | Reply
    • That drink sounds amazing and energizing. Would love to hear the facial recipe. I know yogurt, turmeric, and chickpea flower are a standard mask for Indian women…especially before weddings!

      Pallavi | 04.18.2013 | Reply
      • *flour not *flower 😉

        Pallavi | 04.18.2013 | Reply
        • Thank you for sharing that mask! I am going to try it ASAP!:)

          Natasha | 04.24.2013
  11. OUR MOUTHS ARE WATERING – LOVE THESE RESPONSES! CONGRATS TO OUR WINNER, KRISTIN C!

    The Chalkboard | 04.22.2013 | Reply

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