Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Dry Fruits Milkshake - A tasty, healthy, energy booster



Dry fruit Milkshake is a healthy, nourishing and energy boosting refreshment in summer. Anybody needing a quick supply of vigor and punch can have it. This could be served as breakfast supplement for kids, an energy booster after school or office for both old and young and of course a refreshing drink after fasting of Navaratri or any vrat (religious fasting). This is an assortment of nuts, grapes and fruits mixed with goodness of milk which provides a very filling meal for every one who wants to have a spike in his/her energy level.  This drinks is rich in Iron, Calcium, Potassium,Vitamin E, Fibre, antioxidants and Omega 3 fatty acid. In short it is beneficial for your heart, brain, skin and hair, prevents blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, thyroid and constipation. For more details about the benefits please refer to This milkshake is a super food which does not take much time to prepare and is one of the yummiest drinks. Your kids will fall in love for it. Here is the recipe….

There are many dry fruits available in the market and almost all of them can be used for the milkshake and depending upon your availability you can use few or all of them. I describe here my favorite ingredients and all others are optional.

You can watch the recipe in as well

Preparation Time: - 30 min

Cooking Time: - 5~10 min

Servings: - 2~3 persons


  1. 3 tbsp unsalted pistachios, shelled
  2. 10 Almonds (Badam)
  3. 10 whole Cashews (kaju)
  4. 2~3 dried Figs (dried Anjeer) - optional
  5. 4 unseeded Dates (Khajur)
  6. ¼ cup Raisins (Kismis)
  7. ¼ cup Walnut (akhrot)
  8. 2~3 pieces of Apricot - optional
  9. Pinch of Saffron (Kesar)
  10. ½ tsp Cardamom powder (Elaichi powder)
  11. ¼ tsp Vanilla essence
  12. 2 tbsp Honey
  13. 2 tbsp Powdered or crushed Sugar – optional
  14. 2 cup or 500 ml toned Milk


  1. We need to peel the almonds now. For that put the almonds in warm water for 5 min.
  2. In the meantime boil the milk and keep aside to cool down. If you use Tetra pack milk no need to boil. Once the milk is cooled to room temperature put it in Refrigerator.
  3. Now put the almonds in cold water and after few seconds peel them. The hot-cold treatment will make the peeling easier.
  4. Once almonds are peeled chop the figs and dates. If you are preparing the milkshake for your smaller kids you should avoid figs as their digestion may be affected by sour figs.
  5. Shell the pistachios if not already shelled. Keep 1~2 pistachio and 1~2 almonds for Garnishing.
  6. Now mix the almonds, pistachios, raisins, walnut, apricot, chopped figs and dates. I prefer to use black raisins as they are healthier than green ones but some kids may not like it. Hence the choice is yours to use the kind of raisins you want. Pour all of them in cold water and soak for 15 minutes.
  7. Refrigerate the mixture for another 15 min.
  8. Once the milk and the mixture is sufficiently chilled take out them. Strain the water from the dry fruit mixture with the help of a strainer.
  9. Combine the dry fruits with 1 cup of milk and honey and blend in a mixer till smooth. You can use sugar if you want. The amount of sugar depends upon your taste.
  10. Add cardamom powder, vanilla essence (optional – I do not use it) and rest of the milk—again blend it to make a smooth little bit frothy milkshake.
  11. Pour them in 2~3 glasses and garnish with the pistas, almonds and few strands of saffron

Serve this shake as it is or you can refrigerate it for some time to have the chilled refreshing feeling.


  • You can add a scoop of ice cream on top of it to make it more interesting but I do not prefer this.
  • You can use Soya milk or almond milk instead of cow’s milk for making it a vegan recipe.                       

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As always please feel free to comment, criticize and seek if any help is required. I am all ears.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Echor / Enchorer Dalna - Spicy Traditional Bengali Raw Jackfruit Curry

Summer is in full swing and fresh vegetables are not available in market for extreme heat. The dietician inside me tells that it is always good to have seasonal vegetable in the diet. But question is which one…options are limited. Suddenly another old Bengali dish comes to my mind from my grandma’s kitchen. It is called  Enchorer Dalna or raw / green Jackfruit curry. Jackfruit is easily available in summer and at the same time it is Vegan too.

An aromatic raw jackfruit dish, this Enchorer Dalna Recipe is a traditional Bengali Style Raw Jackfruit cooked in mustard oil, and the jackfruit pieces have a lovely coating of thick gravy it is cooked in.

In Bengali the young or unripe jackfruit is called 'Enchor'. It has a subtle flavor and it is a healthy vegetable with a lot of protein. Raw jackfruit is great for diabetes as it has a much lower glycemic load than rice and wheat. But first without talking too much … the recipe..

Preparation Time: - 15 min

Cooking Time: - 30 min

Servings: - 2~3 persons


  1. 1 medium size, about 500 gm. Green/Raw Jackfruit (Echor / Encor)
  2. 1 large or 2 medium size Potato (Aloo)
  3. 1 medium size Tomato
  4. 1 medium size Onion
  5. 1 tbsp Garlic paste
  6. ½ tbsp Ginger paste
  7. 1 tbsp Cumin seeds (Jeera)
  8. 1 tbsp of curd /yogurt
  9. 1 tsp Kashmiri Red chilli powder (more for spice lovers)
  10. ½ tsp Cumin powder
  11. ½ tsp Coriander powder
  12. ½ tsp Turmeric powder (Haldi)
  13. ½ tsp Garam masala powder
  14. 1 small Cinnamon Stick (Dalchini)
  15. 3 Cardamom (Elaichi) Pods/Seeds
  16. 3 Cloves (Laung)
  17. 2 Bay leaf (tej patta)
  18. 3 Green Chillies (optional according to taste)
  19. 5~6 tbsp Mustard oil
  20. Salt to taste
  21. 1 tsp Sugar
  22. 1 tsp Ghee (optional)


  1. The difficult-most part of this recipe is to cut the jack fruit into pieces. That is because of the glue like sap present in the fruit. If you can get your maid to do that for you in lieu of some bribe do it J . Otherwise grease your hands and the knife that you are going to use, with some oil. Peel and cut the jackfruit into cubed form. Keep a bowl of water with some salt in it and put the cubes in the water to avoid discoloring.
  2. Put the echor in ¼ cup of water and pressure cook till about 2 whistles.
  3. In the meantime peel the potato, wash and cut into cubes. Chop the onion and tomato fine and with the help of grinder make ginger and garlic paste from fresh ones. The aroma and taste would be better if you do like this. If in shortage of time you can use readymade paste available in market.
  4. Allow the pressure off in the cooker and take out the jack fruit cubes. Toss the jackfruit cubes with Kashmiri Red Chili powder, ½ tsp of Cumin and Coriander powder each and keep aside.
  5. Heat 3 tbsp. mustard oil in kadai or non-stick pan in high heat. Authentic Bengali preparation use mustard oil but if you do not like the pungent smell of mustard oil then you can use any vegetable oil. Sometimes I use a 50:50 mixture of sunflower and mustard oil.
  6. When oil starts smoking turn the burner to medium setting and shallow fry the potatoes till golden brown. Drain it and place on kitchen towel to get rid of excess oil. Keep aside.
  7. Add 3 tbsp. oil with the remaining oil in the same kadai and heat again.
  8. Now add the cumin seeds, bay leaves and one green chili. If you want it spicier you can add whole red chili. Now I cook for my family with two kids – hence I did not use chilies here.

  9. Coarsely pound the Elaichi (Cardamom), Laung (Cloves) & Darchini (Cinnamon Sticks) in a pestle and mortar and add it to the oil. Stir to mix and add sugar. You can leave sugar if you have any issue with it. When spices started spluttering then add the onion.
  10.  Sauté till the onion pieces turn translucent.
  11. At this stage add the ginger garlic paste and cook for 1~2 minutes or till the raw smell of ginger is gone.
  12. Add chopped tomatoes. Sprinkle little salt, cover and cook till the tomatoes are mushy.
  13. Now add turmeric powder, rest of the silted green chilies (optional), sprinkle some water and mix well. Occasionally stir.
  14. After about 2~3 min. the spices will start to release oil. Then add the fried potato and jackfruit, stir to mix well. Cook for some more time till the masala coats the jackfruit and the potatoes nicely.

  15. Add warm water to the level such that it covers the vegetables. Bring the water to boil and add salt.
  16. Now cover and cook till the vegetables are done. Stir occasionally.
  17. Adjust the gravy to your liking – generally this dish is cooked with thick gravy.
  18. Finally add ghee (optional but I liked it personally) and garam masala powder, mix well.
  19. Switch off the burner, cover the pan and let it cool for some time.

Serve this side dish hot with hot steamed rice and some fries like brinjal or any starter of your choice. You can eat it with any coloured / fried rice as well.

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As always please feel free to comment, criticize and seek if any help is required. I am all ears.