Spicy Roasted Phool Makhana | A Low Calorie Snack

I am a recent convert to the pleasures of Roasted Phool Makhana. I discovered this low-calorie, nutrient rich snack in my quest to lose weight and satiate those 4 PM hunger pangs.

Roasted Phool Makhana (Fox Nuts, Gorgon Nuts or Lotus Seeds) spiced with chilli powder.
Roasted Phool Makhana | A Low Calorie Snack

Called Fox Nuts, Gorgon Nuts or Lotus Seeds in English, Phool Makhana in rich in fibre, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, iron and zinc; while being low on sodium. As a result, it is used to treat a variety of ailments from obesity to blood pressure to arthritis.

The health benefits aside, I love this crunchy snack as I could flavour the Makhana with whatever spices I wanted. In this batch, I used just some black salt and chilli powder. I have also tried spicing Roasted Makhana with Amchur, Chaat Masala, or even just Pepper Powder. Actually, I just roast a large batch of Makhana and then flavour portions of it with different spices. 🙂

Want more low-calorie snack recipes? Try Kolhapuri Bhadang and Low-Oil Chivda.

How to Make Roasted Phool Makhana, Fox Nuts, Gorgon Nuts, or Lotus Seeds

Spicy Roasted Makhana (Fox Nuts, Gorgon Nuts, or Lotus Seeds) | A Low Calorie Snack
Cook Time
20 mins

Spicy Roasted Makhana is a delicious, low-calories snack that is packed with nutrients and keeps hunger at bay. 

Course: Snack
Cuisine: Indian
Author: Aruna
  • 100 Gms Phool Makhana
  • 1 tbsp Ghee or Oil Vegans can use oil
  • Salt or Black Salt to taste I used 1 tsp
  • Chilli Powder to taste I used 2 tsp
  1. In a large kadhai or wok, over low to medium heat, dry-roast the Makhana till they become crisp. When you bite them, they should not feel spongy. The process takes about 15 minutes. Stir-constantly to ensure that the Makhana does not burn.

  2. Take the Kadhai/wok off the heat.

  3. Heat the ghee or oil till just warm.

  4. Add the chilli powder and black salt to the warmed ghee or oil. Mix well.

  5. Add the ghee/oil and spices to the roasted Makhana.

  6. Mix well.

  7. Let the Makhana cool to room temperature. Store in an air-tight container!

Recipe Notes
  • You need to use a low-medium heat and roast the Makhana patiently while stirring constantly. Only then will you get a crisp roasted Makhana. 
  • If you use high heat, or do not stir constantly, you are in danger of having Makhana that is burnt or browned from the outside but spongy inside.


Spicy Roasted Phool Makhana
Spicy Roasted Phool Makhana

Roasted Red Radishes with Salt and Pepper

Roasted Red Radishes
Roasted Red Radishes

As a general rule I am not too fond of radishes of any variety; I find the taste too strong. However, ever since I saw Dimple Makani’s post on Roasted Radishes in Brown Butter Sauce, I have been wanting to try this simple yet oh-so-appealing dish. And try them I did this past week. Now I am in love with this dish. 🙂

While Dimple has a more decadent version that uses a Brown Butter Sauce, I made a simpler version that uses just salt and pepper for seasoning.

Do visit Dimple’s blog at https://shivaaydelights.wordpress.com for more delicious recipes!

Serves: 2

Time: 30 Minutes


  1. Red Radishes – 8
  2. Olive Oil – 3 tbsp
  3. Salt – 1/2 tsp + To Taste
  4. Pepper to Taste


  1. Cut the tops of the radishes.
  2. Cut each red radish in 1/2.
  3. Mix 1/2 tsp salt in oil oil.
  4. Add the radish pieces into the oil.
  5. Toss till the pieces are well-coated.
  6. Set aside.
  7. Pre-heat an oven to 150ºC.
  8. Line a baking tray with foil.
  9. Place the baby radish pieces cut face-down on the lined tray.
  10. Drizzle all the oil over the radish pieces.
  11. Bake for about 10 minutes.
  12. Take the tray out and flip the radish pieces so that the cut side now faces up.
  13. Bake for about 5 minutes or till the edges turn brown and the pieces are tender.
  14. Place the roasted radish pieces in a bowl.
  15. Drizzle the oil from the baking tray over the pieces.
  16. Sprinkle some freshly ground pepper powder over the radish pieces.
  17. Serve warm.

Aromatic Lemon Coriander Soup

Aromatic Lemon Coriander Soup
Aromatic Lemon Coriander Soup

This past week the temperatures in Mumbai went from a scorching 39°C to a cool 28°C overnight. While I enjoyed the relief of cooler weather, I promptly caught a cold and had a sore throat over the Diwali weekend. I suspect the change in weather along with the smoke from all the fireworks did me in.

When I have a cold, I tend to gravitate towards assorted rasams. However, there is only so much Miriyala Charu (Pepper Rasam) or Nimmakaya Charu (Lemon Rasam) that one can drink. So then I started moving onto soups. And that is when I remembered the Lemon Coriander Soup.

What I love about this soup is that it gets done in a jiffy and is absolutely delicious. As a bonus, it is also superbly aromatic!

Time: 20 Minutes

Serves: 4


  1. Fresh coriander – 1 Packed Cup
  2. Lemon Juice – 3 tbsp
  3. Kaffir Lime Leaves – 4
  4. Lemon Grass – 2
  5. Pepper Powder – 1/3 tsp
  6. Corn Flour – 2 tbsp
  7. Water – 5 Cups
  8. Salt to Taste


  1. Chop the coriander into fine pieces.
  2. Dissolve the corn flour in about 1/4 cup water. Set aside.
  3. Boil the water.
  4. When the water starts to boil:
    1. Turn off the flame.
    2. Add the lemon grass (as is), kaffir lime leaves, and pepper powder.
  5. Cover and let the flavours steep into the water for 5 to 7 minutes.
  6. Remove the lemon grass and kaffir lime leaves from the water and discard them.
  7. Bring the water to a simmer.
  8. Add the dissolved cornflour and let the water thicken.
  9. When the water is thick, turn off the heat.
  10. Add the chopped coriander, lemon juice, and salt.
  11. Serve hot.


  • Remember that this soup is very light, so you need larger than usual portions.
  • If you have vegetable stock at home, use that instead of plain water.
  • If you don’t get kaffir lime leaves, don’t worry. The lemongrass is enough.


Thai Noodle Salad – Guest Post by Sarah Mir of Flour & Spice

Thai Noodle Salad
Thai Noodle Salad

What attracted me to to Sarah’s blog was her easy to make yet delicious recipes. In her write-up about herself, Sarah mentions that she is “not into frou frou desserts.” I would extend that to all her recipes. Her recipes are very down to earth and yet so appealing.

Do visit Sarah’s blog Flour & Spice for a full tour of her repretoire.

I am delighted to share Sarah’s light yet delicious Thai Noodle Salad as a guest post for me.

Thank You, Sarah!

Now, without much ado, over to Sarah.


*ahem ahem* *nervous throat clearing*

Hello old friends and new and a big thank you to Aruna for having me here at her lovely blog Aharam. I have been a follower and fan for some time and it is quite an honour to be here. Aruna’s blog constantly amazes me with it’s wide variety of foods and the amount of new things I learn from each post. It reminds me how food blogging isn’t about food alone, but also about who we are, where we come from, and what we believe. Thanks Aruna for regularly welcoming us into your world. 🙂

It is no secret that I love Thai flavours. I find most salads to be bland or too unhealthy but add a Thai inspired dressing and it is hard to walk away. With the weather turning in these parts this dish adds some hearty healthy comfort to chilly days. Hope you try it and love it as much as I do.

Recipe originally from http://www.nonisplace.com/my-go-to-soba-noodle-salad

Ingredients for the Salad

  1. 250 grams noodles – Pad Thai, Soba, Whole Wheat Spaghetti
  2. ½ head shredded red cabbage
  3. 1-2 peppers of choice thinly sliced
  4. 3 scallions/ green onions chopped
  5. 1 carrot grated or peeled into strips
  6. 1 chopped jalapeno
  7. ½ bunch chopped cilantro
  8. 3 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
  9. 4 tbsp thinly sliced almonds toasted

Ingredients for the Dressing

  1. 1 inch ginger
  2. 3 cloves garlic
  3. 2/3 cup soy sauce
  4. ½ cup neutral oil – I used Canola
  5. 2 tbsp sesame oil
  6. 1 tbsp honey
  7. 1 tsp dark brown sugar
  8. 2 limes zested and juiced
  9. Pinch of salt

Method to Make the Dressing

  • Put dressing ingredients into a blender, blitz till well combined and set aside.

Putting Together the Salad

  1. Prepare your noodles according to directions.
  2. Add the vegetables to the dressings and let it sit.
  3. Once the noodles are done, mix into the vegetables.
  4. Garnish with cilantro, sesame seeds, almonds and eat up!

Thai Noodle Salad - Soba Noodles - 3

Arati Doota Kura or Aarati Davva Kura (Banana Stem Curry)

Arati Doota Kura or Arati Davva Kura
Arati Doota Kura or Arati Davva Kura

The other day, in a public foodies group that I am a part of, one of the members commented that the South Indians spare no part of the banana tree! I cannot but agree with that statement. In my home apart from a variety of curries we make with raw banana, we also use the Banana Stem (Arati Doota or Davva) to make a curry.

The Banana Stem is rich in fibre and is low in calories. As a result, it is great for people losing weight loss.

I love to have Arati Duta Kura with Curd Rice!


  1. Arati Doota/Arati Duvva/Banana Stem – 12″ piece
  2. Udad Dal – 1 tsp
  3. Chana Dal – 1 tsp
  4. Cumin Seeds – 1/2 tsp
  5. Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
  6. Oil – 1 tbsp
  7. Turmeric – 1/8 tsp
  8. Curd – 1 tbsp
  9. Lemon Juice or Nuvvula Podi – 1 tbsp
  10. Red Chillies – 2 or 3
  11. Salt to Taste
  12. Curry Leaves – A Few


  1. Beat the curd till it is smooth.
  2. Mix curd in 1.5 litre of water.
  3. Cut the Arati Duta into 1/4″ inch thick discs.
  4. As you cut the discs, place the discs in the water containing diluted curd. This prevents them from turning dark.
  5. Cut each disc into fine pieces.
  6. As you cut the discs into pieces, drop the pieces in the water containing the curd.
  7. Boil 1.5 litre of water with 1 tsp salt and turmeric.
  8. Drain and wash the curd off the Arati Duta pieces.
  9. Place the Arati Duta pieces in the boiling water and cook covered for 7-10 minutes.
  10. Drain the water and set aside the Arati Duta pieces.
  11. In a wok or kadai, heat the oil.
  12. Add mustard seeds and wait till they splutter.
  13. Add udad dal and chana dal.
  14. Fry till the dals are golden brown.
  15. Add cumin seeds, split red chillies and curry leaves.
  16. Fry for a couples of minutes.
  17. Add Arati Duta pieces and salt.
  18. Mix well.
  19. Stir fry for 3 to 5 minutes.
  20. Add lemon juice or nuvvula podi.
  21. Mix well.
  22. Serve hot with rice.