AF Veggie Poha (Flaked Rice with veggies) – yum!

Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start…

When  you sing you begin with Do Re Me, Do Re me; when you cook you begin with the ingredients… 😉

Music and cooking – a tapestry of creative instinct!! I was listening to this melodious Julie Andrews song as I wrote this blog post today… 

Read on for delecious, nutritious, AF (allergy-friendly) 1-dish dinner recipe…

Continue reading “AF Veggie Poha (Flaked Rice with veggies) – yum!”


‘Lentil Bites’ – allergy-friendly protein punch!

I have been feeling like a kid in a candy store all week. In my quest for allergy friendly dishes through the lanes of international cusine, I came across some amazing dishes from the state of Gujarat in western India. Without any substitutions – so many of their dishes are naturally allergy friendly and high on nutrition. At such moments I am reminded of a line from the song  – I hope you dance…’Promise me that you will give faith a fighting chance.’ To thrive with food allergies, one must always keep this song very close to their heart 🙂

‘Lentil bites’  – mmmm’ilicious’…what more can I say 🙂 The essential ingredient is mung beans! This bean has always been one of my favorites – high in protein, fiber, essential vitamins and minerals, low fat but still manages to feel light on the stomach…go figure! 

The following measure will yield approximately 75 bite sized pieces. Ideal as finger food for a small group of 6 – 8 people.

1. 1 cup  split, husked mung bean (available at stores like Whole Foods and also in regular grocery stores in the International Foods aisle)

2.  1 tbsp. Eno’s fruit salt (available in Indian grocery stores) : This ingredient is optional
3.  Salt and pepper to taste
4.  ½ cup of vegetables like grated carrot, finely chopped fresh spinach
5. ½ tsp mustard seeds (black)
6. ½ tsp.  cumin seeds
7. 2 tsp. oil (any oil like vegetable, corn, canola or olive oil)

1. Soak the mung bean in 3 cups of water for 4-6 hours. It should be soft to bite. Drain the water.

2. Grind the soaked mung bean to form a coarse batter with about ¼ cup of water.

3. If you have the fruit salt, add it at this point along with the salt  and vegetables and continue with step 5.                                                                                                         4. If you dont have fruit salt, let the batter ferment overnight and then follow the same steps below.
5. To prepare seasoning – heat the oil on medium heat in a small saucepan. Add the mustard seeds and cumin seeds.

6. In about a minute the mustard seeds will crackle. Remove from fire and add the tempering to the ground batter. Be watchful else the seasoning will burn.

7. Mix the batter thoroughly.

7. If you have a steamer, add 2 inches of water to it. and bring it to a boil. A big pot can be used instead of a steamer.

8. Grease a flat stainless steel dish/plate that can go into the steamer and put 1 tsp.  of the ground batter at 1 inch intervals on the plate. Place it carefully inside the steamer.
9. Cover the steamer/ pot and let it steam for 10 minutes.

If you have an idli mould – it can be effectively used for steaming.


Potato-peas loaf

Allergy friendly so often tastes ‘blaah’ or at best ‘just ok’ that this dish took me by surprise – pretty darn yummilicious. A double thumbs-up as an appetizer or a side dish on a fancy dinner table 🙂 The best part is it is so simple to put together – less than half an hour excluding time taken to boil the peas and potatoes. So, here is my modern take on a traditional dish from the western part of India…

1) 4 large potatoes, boiled (Yukon gold or red potatoes work best)         
2) 1 cup cooked peas
3) 2 tablespoons rice flour (use organic brown rice flour to enhance nutrition)
4) Salt and pepper to taste
5) Oil to grease the baking tray  (any oil is suitable)

1) Preheat the oven to 400 degree F.
2) Roughly mash the peas in the blender
3) Mash the potatoes roughly and mix in the mashed peas, rice flour, salt and pepper well.
4) Grease a standard 9″ bread loaf pan.
5) Press the mixture into the baking tray and lightly brush the top with oil.

6) Bake for 20 – 25 minutes till it is golden brown around the edges and crisp.

7) Cut into bite-sized pieces and serve with salsa or a dollop of dairy-free butter on top 🙂


Allergy friendly Mung Bean Soup

Can it get any colder?! Feels like NJ is getting slammed by snowstorms like never before…what better time for a bowl of warm mung bean soup – rich in proteins, fiber and as always allergy friendly. It also happens to be my little one’s favorite – yayy!


– Dehusked split dry Mung Bean: 1/2 cup

– Turmeric: 1/4 teaspoon

–  Pepper                                                                                                 –

– Olive Oil or any other oil (Corn, Canola, Vegetable):  1/2 tablespoon                      

– Salt to taste

– Optional: 1 cup finely chopped Spinach, 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds, pinch of asafoetida, 1 tbsp finely cut coriander leaves


– Measure  the mung bean in a 4 quart heavy bottomed saucepan.                               -Wash the mung bean and drain all the water. Add 3 cups of water and the turmeric and stir till the turmeric is completely stirred in.          

– Heat the saucepan on medium to high flame till the water comes to a boil. Turn it down to medium heat so that the water is simmering.  

– Stir the soup every 10 minutes to ensure that it is not sticking to the bottom of the vessel.                                                                                                                                                 – In about 30 – 40 minutes, the lentils will be completely cooked. Add the required amount of salt and turn down the flame to low.                                                  

– In a small saucepan heat the olive oil. When the oil is heated, add the cumin seeds (Omit the cumin seeds if you don’t want to add cumin seeds.) Switch of the flame and add ground black pepper and pinch of asafoetida (optional)   

Small saucepan to heat oil

– Add the heated oil with the seasoning to the soup and finely chopped coriander leaves. Give it a good stir and switch of the flame.


1) To increase flavor and nutritional content add the cut spinach in the last 10 minutes of cooking time.                                                                                                               

 2) Spinach is just one example. This lentil soup is remarkably versatile – add cooked carrots, cucumber, cabbage, or sauteed onions, green peppers. Let your imagination run wild and make this soup yours 😉

Ways to enjoy it…

1) Have it as a soup as is.         

2) Mix it with rice – yummy and nutritionally awesome!       

3) Use it as a dip for tortillas, pita bread etc.


Rice – Quinoa Pilaf

This nutritious and allergy friendly dish is a contribution by one of Allergy Foodie’s readers, Veena. Thanks Veena – it constantly amazes me how moms of kids with food allergies constantly innovate to make life better for their kids. The tip about overcoming the overpowering flavor of quinoa is a sure winner…

“The strong flavor of quinoa flour can be masked by adding fried black lentil powder(fry the powder either in the pan or in the microwave for about 5 min stirring every 2 min) or by adding rice flour to the quinoa.”

  Continue reading “Rice – Quinoa Pilaf”


Banana Fritters – Allergy friendly dessert :-)


This is the first guest post to AllergyFoodie so, I am very excited.  The recipe is thanks to Sunita Purushottam who is a PhD in Environmental Science and Engineering and the writer of the hugely entertaining and informative environmental blog, She is also one of the most thoughtful people I have had the good fortune to know. Every time we have gone over for a meal to her home (and we go quite often) she has made sure that a majority of the dishes are Arjun friendly. This may not sound like a big deal but every mom who has kids with food allergies knows that many people often forget to take into consideration people with food allergies when having people over. Thanks Sunita and looking forward to many more posts from your yummilicious kitchen 😉

Continue reading “Banana Fritters – Allergy friendly dessert :-)”


Instant Allergy Friendly Savory Pancakes (Dosa)

Raised in a South Indian household, I have grown up eating various types of yummy savory pancakes or dosas! The original recipe needs overnight fermenting but this is my quick version for all us parents who have kids with allergies and have to spend a lot of time cooking. My version of the dish uses more of the bean flour than would be used in the traditional recipe to make it a good source of protein. This alteration also yields softer pancakes.

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Allergy Friendly Amaranth Puffed Bread

Just got back from an invigorating vacation in Switzerland – yayy!  My greatest find during the trip…a friend in an amazing lady, Bhavna.  An acupuncturist by profession, she is also a store house of knowledge on health foods. She is the one who introduced me to the nutrition-packed, versatile Amaranth and this allergy friendly recipe is inspired by her. This incredible grain is rich in proteins, fiber and calcium which, makes it a great source of nutrition for those with multiple food allergies.

  Continue reading “Allergy Friendly Amaranth Puffed Bread”