Strawberry and baby spinach salad

Its summer time everywhere although in California the weather is pleasant and there is still a chill in the air. One of the ways to beat the heat is to eating a cool, refreshing salad.  What better way to make this than picking up fresh produce from the farmers market.  The cool thing about shopping at the farmers market is they give handouts of recipes based on the produce of the season. I picked up this recipe and the ingredients along with what goes into the salad and added few ingredients of my own and the result was a very delicious salad!

Ingredients :

3-4 packed cups of baby spinach (washed and dried)

8-10 strawberries, cut into quarters

Handful of mint leaves, chopped finely

2-3 tablespoons toasted and slivered almonds

1 handful of raisins

1 tbsp honey

Parmesan shavings(optional)

Juice of 1 lime/lemon

1 tbsp olive oil

1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Salt to taste

Whisk together the olive oil, honey, lime juice, salt and pepper. Taste to make sure the dressing has the right amount of salt and pepper.  In a big salad bowl, add the spinach, mint leaves, strawberries, almonds and raisins. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well. Add Parmesan shavings for garnish. I didn’t have any at home and so I left it out. Serve the salad immediately.

Menthyada pudi/ Fenugreek spice powder/ Kari pudi

I am back to the blogging  world after a long hiatus. I have been busy getting a hang of motherhood to my 7 week old baby boy! Still catching up on posts from the bloggers whom I follow.

My parents are here to help us out with the baby and amma is dishing out all my favorite recipes! Feels good to be eating regular food after being on a diet for almost 3 months because of gestational diabetes!

This recipe is amma’s preparation and is similiar to chutney powder or chutney pudi. It is usually eaten with steaming hot rice and ghee and is delicious! Perfect for those days when you are bored of cooking rasam, sambar or some other accompaniment for rice. Kari pudi is what we Iyengars call it. I have no clue what “kari” means! 🙂 This doesn’t require any elaborate steps for cooking except for dry roasting all ingredients and grinding them to fine powder.


1 cup chana dal

2 cups toor dal

1 cup moong dal

1 cup urad dal

1 cup wheat

1 cup coriander seeds

1/4 cup black pepper

1/4 cup methi seeds or fenugreek seeds

1/2 cup cumin seeds or jeera

2 cups curry leaves ( packed )

2 pinches of asafoetida

5-6 red chillies

Salt to taste

Dry roast the chana dal and urad dal until golden brown. Dry roast toor dal and moong dal separately. Mix black pepper, methi seeds, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, asafoetida and dry roast them. Roast the curry leaves until they are dry.

Let all the roasted ingredients cool.  Grind everything to a fine powder and adjust the salt level according to taste.

Enjoy with some steaming hot basmati rice and a dollop of ghee or peanut oil. This can also be used to thicken the gravy for gojjus.