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Navratri meal gets a yummy makeover

City chefs share with us their Navratri special recipes with a fashionable and healthy twist.

india Updated: Mar 26, 2012 11:05 IST
Hindustan Times

How about giving your Navratri thali a yummy makeover this time? From tofu berry smoothie to seasoned potato, cottage cheese and bell peppers bake, perk up your taste buds with creative recipes. Moreover, these special Navratri dishes are easy to prepare, and are healthy and low in calories.

Chef Amit Rana of Chef Tourant, The Imperial, says, “Navratri food helps maintain the nutritional balance in our body. It cleans and rests our system, if made the right way. You can go for dishes that are low in calories, yet have interesting and lively flavours. Even something like the traditional aloo subzi can be a low calorie dish when made with a few changes in the cooking style.” Here’s how to top your preparations with a dose of innovation.

Sitafal aur tamatar ka shorba

200gm sitafal
200gm tomato chopped
2-3tbs olive oil
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
Sendha namak to taste
1/2 litre water
Chilli flakes (optional)

Peel the fruit and de-seed it. Cut it in equal sizes. Apply some peanut oil on the pieces. Sprinkle sendha namak on it. Put in the oven to roast at 200° for 15
minutes. Blend the pieces in a blender. Now, add desi ghee in a pan, throw cumin seeds, add the sitafal blend and chopped tomatoes. Add water. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes. Add sendha namak. Blend and strain. Add paneer cubes to garnish and serve hot.

Recipe by chef Tarun Kapoor, The Metropolitan Hotel

Potato pumpkin pancake

1 large potato
1 big chunk pumpkin
2 green chillies
1 inch piece ginger
1/2 cup coriander leaves (chopped)
1 cup kuttu ka atta
1/2 cup singhare ka atta
1/4 cup curd
Senda namak to taste
Extra virgin olive oil to shallow fry

Grind ginger and chillies in a grinder. Set it aside. Grate potato and pumpkin in a bowl of cold salted water. Take kuttu and singhare ka atta in a deep bowl and add coriander leaves to it. Strain water from grated veggies and add to the flour. Add chilli-ginger paste and salt and make a batter. The batter must be thick enough to spread on a nonstick pan. Keep it aside for 30 minutes. Now, heat one tablespoon of oil and add it to the batter. Mix it well. Heat a nonstick pan and pour one ladleful batter in the centre and spread to form a pancake. Keep the pancake as thin as possible. Allow the pancake to cook, drizzle with
some oil and roast until crisp. Potato Pumpkin Pancake is ready to eat. Serve hot with pumpkin chutney or green chutney.

Recipe by chef Praveen Kumar, Et Al Café Plus Bar

Seasoned Potato, cottage cheese & Bell peppers bake

3 nos potato thinly sliced (without skin)
500gm cottage cheese thinly sliced
5 nos bell peppers (de-seeded and de-skinned)
Sendha namak to taste
250gm fresh tomato paste
20gm cumin powder
35gm coriander powder
15gm turmeric
7gm green chillies finely chopped
1 piece butter paper

Marinate paneer and peppers with the spices. In a baking tray, spread a butter paper on the base and the boundary of the tray. Then arrange the potatoes, paneer and bell peppers layer by layer and spread the tomato paste, chopped green chillies and sendha namak between them. In a pre-heated oven, bake the dish at 175° for approximately 30-45 mins. Check it after every 15 mins. Take the dish out, let it settle for 10 mins and then put it upside down in a big platter. Served.

By Chef Amit Rana of Chef Tourant, The Imperial

Chatpati fruit chaat


100gm apple
100gm watermelon
100gm guava
8-10 mint leaves
2 pcs sabudana papad
1/4 tsp deghi mirch powder
Juice of 2 lemons
2 tsp sugar

For the dressing, mix juice of one lemon with sugar and red chilli powder and keep aside till the sugar dissolves. Fry two sabudana papads and let its extra oil drain on a kitchen towel. Tear mint leaves and soak them in chilled water and keep aside. Now, cut the fruits and add the dressing. Crush the papads and add it to the chaat along with the mint leaves. Serve it chilled.

Recipe by chef Manav Sharma, Ignis

Tropical Tofu Berry Smoothie

1 cup light fat-free vanilla yogurt
1 cup skim milk
1 banana
3inch cube of soft tofu
3/4 cup blueberries
1 cup strawberries

Put yogurt, milk, banana, tofu, and Equal (sugar free) into the blender, and blend until smooth. Add berries and blend again until smoothie consistency is achieved.

Recipe by chef Brijesh Kumar, Zazen

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First Published: Mar 25, 2012 17:22 IST