Light and Flavorsome!
Esgee's Kitchen

Light and Flavorsome!


Here are three recipes with no added fat in them. This makes the food lighter and yet retains the flavor. These are traditional foods tried and tested without the added fat which makes them excellent for the health conscious.

1. Coconut Pancakes

Popular both in North and South India, these pancakes may be served hot or cold. An old traditional recipe without the heavy ghee ingredient, these pancakes/ crepes are delicious.

Prep Time: 30 minutes Cooking Time: 30 minutes

  • 1 cup flour [wheat is best]
  • ½ cup semolina
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • For the filling:
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup grated coconut
  • ½ cup jaggery/ palm sugar
  • 1-2 tsps raisins [pitted]
  • ½ tsp cardamom powder
  • For sauce:
  • ½ cup jaggery/ palm sugar
  • 10-12 dates chopped [optional]
  • ½ cup water

First make the pancakes and set aside. For this, mix the flour, semolina, milk and fennel in a bowl. Make sure there are no lumps and set aside for 15 minutes.

For the filling: heat milk, grated coconut and jaggery in a saucepan. Cook this for approximately 20 minutes, stirring well. Add the raisins and cardamom powder and cook till all the milk is absorbed.

In a nonstick pan pour in 3 tablespoons of the batter and swirl to make an even, flat pancake. Cook on low heat till it browns lightly. Fill the pancake with the coconut mixture using about 2 teaspoons full each time. Roll the pancake. Remove and place on a plate. Repeat process till all the batter and filling is used up. Arrange the pancakes neatly side by side.

To make the sauce- boil the jaggery with water and cook till pouring consistency. Add the chopped dates and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Pour the sauce over the pancakes and serve.

2. Prawn Chilli Curry

Prep Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 20 minutes

  • ½ kg prawns [deveined and washed]
  • ½ tbsp tamarind pulp
  • 4 small onions/shallots
  • ½ inch piece of ginger
  • 2 flakes garlic
  • 2 green chilies
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 small stick of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 cup water some coriander leaves chopped
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • Salt

Strain the tamarind through a sieve and set aside. Grind together onion, garlic, ginger, turmeric and green chilies with a little water. Put all the ingredients except the chopped coriander and prawns into a pan and bring to boil. Lower the flame and cook for around 10 minutes. Now add the prawns and cook for 3-4 more minutes. The gravy will have thickened and the prawns cooked. Check for salt. Sprinkle coriander over the top and serve.

PS. This is best served with steaming hot rice!

3. Lentil Soup

Prep Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: 30 minutes

An easy and healthy soup full of the spicy flavours!

  • ¾ cup red lentils/ Masoor dal
  • 1 onion sliced thin
  • ½ inch ginger chopped
  • 1-2 flakes of garlic chopped
  • 6 cups water
  • A small stick of cinnamon
  • ½ tsp cumin/jeera
  • 2 red chilies
  • 1 tsp tamarind
  • Salt

In a pressure cooker combine lentils, onion, ginger, garlic and water. Cook till lentils are soft [approx 18-20 minutes]. Cool and blend in a food processor. In a pan dry roast cinnamon, cumin and red chilies for 2 minutes. To this, add the lentil soup with tamarind paste and stir. Add salt to taste. Lower the heat and simmer for 3-4 minutes. Serve the flavorsome soup/ broth hot.

PS. Garnish with coriander leaves/ mint leaves or bread croutons.