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Delicious soups and delightful desserts

Tuesday, March 18, 2014
By Dr. Shernaz Baji Avari

The Parsis love hot, steaming palatable soups. They will also never miss an opportunity to bite into tempting desserts. These simple to make home-made soups and desserts are my personal recipes as I have a penchant for both on a daily basis. There ae no fancy ingredients involved and I am sure both will smack your lips in delight. There is something to please every taste bud and palate. All soups and sweet dishes will help serve 4 family members.

Blood Purifying Crimson Soup
I call this a blood purifying crimson soup, as it turns out crimson in colour and has the tendency to purify your blood.


  • 2 medium sized carrots, peeled & chopped
  • 2 cups palak or cholai leaves, washed & chopped
  • 1 beetroot peeled
  • 1 onion
  • 1 or 2 medium sized tomatoes
  • ½ teaspoon ginger-garlic paste
  • 2 cups water. Salt to taste.
  • 1 tbs. Butter and half teaspoon. Pepper powder

Keep all the ingredients in a box along with water (except butter and pepper) and pressure cook for 10 minutes. When cooked, add all the veggies in your mixer-grinder and blend to a fine paste like consistency. Add the stock of the veggies and again blend well. Simmer butter and pepper powder for a few seconds on slow heat. Add the mixture. A deep coloured healthy crimson soup is ready.

If you're not well or do not feel like ingesting any solid food, just have a couple of bowls of this nourishing and energysing soup.

Cream of Tomato Soup

  • 5 to 6 medium sized red tomatoes
  • 1 big potato (unpeeled)
  • 5 to 6 flakes of garlic
  • 2 tbs. Milk powder
  • 1 tbs. Butter & half tbs. Pepper powder

Keep the first 3 ingredients in your cooker box and steam. Remove the skin from the tomatoes and the potato. Make it into a paste in your mixer-grinder and add the milk powder. Blend well. Simmer butter and pepper for a few seconds and pour the blend of tomatoes. Milk powder brings out its own blend of sweetness. You can substitute some fresh milk cream for the milk powder. Your creamy tomato soup is ready! If you love tomatoes in any form, this one will delight you.

Cream of chicken Soup

  • 2 big pieces of chicken
  • 1 cup cut macaroni
  • ½ teaspoon. Ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 egg
  • 1tbs. Butter and half teaspoon pepper powder

Pressure cook chicken and cut macaroni in sufficient water along with ginger-garlic paste and salt. Make a paste of macaroni and stock from the chicken into a creamy consistency. Shred the chicken finely, lengthwise. Simmer butter and pepper and add the creamy mixture along with the shredded chicken. If you like, you can lightly beat an egg with a pinch of salt and pepper and as the soup comes to a boil, slowly trickle the beaten egg stirring continuously. The egg should also look like the shredded chicken and not like a scrambled egg! While the egg is optional, it will give your soup a further fillip and a creamy effect. If you do not like to add cut macaroni then thicken your soup with cornflour.

Carrot, Cabbage & Tomato Soup

  • 1 big carrot
  • 1 big piece of cabbage chopped
  • 3 tomatoes (the carrot, cabbage and tomatoes should be in equal parts0
  • 1 raw onion
  • ½ tea spoon ginger-garlic paste
  • Salt, pepper and butter to taste

Pressure cook all the ingredients in sufficient water. Blend it in your mixer grinder. As usual, simmer butter and pepper and bring the soup to a boil. This healthy soup serves as a remedy for people suffering from intestinal disorders. Take it daily till condition improves.

Peas & Potato Soup

  • 2 cups green peas
  • 1 big potato (unpeeled)
  • 1 onion
  • ½ tbs. Ginger-garlic paste
  • Salt, butter and pepper to taste

Pressure cook all the above ingredients. Peel the potato and blend to a paste like consistency in your mixer-grinder. Simmer some butter and pepper and add all the blended veggies to the soup. Your creamy green soup is ready.

Noodle soup

  • 2 cups hakka noodles with some taste maker
  • 1 carrot finely shredded
  • ½ cup cabbage finely shredded
  • ½ teaspoon ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 chicken piece boiled and shredded (optional)
  • Salt, butter and pepper powder to taste

Boil the hakka noodles with salt and its taste maker. Simmer butter and pepper, add the hakka noodles along with the shredded carrot and cabbage and bring it to a boil. Shredded chicken is optional.

Clear Green Peas Soup

  • 2 cups green peas
  • 3 to 4 garlic flakes
  • ½ lime, salt, butter & pepper powder to taste

Pressure cook green peas with garlic flakes and sufficient water. Simmer butter and pepper powder and add the stock and the whole green peas. Sprinkle lime. Your clear green peas soup is ready. However, if  you wish to have a creamy consistency, then make a paste of the green peas and the stock. Sprinkle like juice.

Green Moong Dal Soup

  • 1 cup green moong soaked overnight in water
  • 1 raw onion
  • 1 big tomato
  • ½ teaspoon each of haldi powder, dhania powder
  • ½ or 1 green chilli de-seeded
  • Salt, butter & pepper powder to taste

Pressure cook all the ingredients. Blend into a fine paste. Add more water, if necessary. Simmer butter and pepper and the moong dal paste bringing the soup to a boil. Sprinkle a few drops of lime juice for that added flavour.

Mixed Vegetable Soup

  • 2 cups of mixed cauliflower florets, chopped french beans, chopped carrot and green peas.
  • 1 tbs. Cornflour blended with one cup milk
  • ½ teaspoon ginger-garlic paste. Salt, butter & pepper to taste

Boil all the veggies with sufficient water and ginger garlic paste. Thicken he geg. Stock with cornflour and milk adding butter and pepper. Add the veggies and bring to a boil.

Masoor Dal Soup (Pink Lentils)

  • 2 tbs. Of masoor dal soaked in 3 cups of water
  • 1 twig curry patta
  • 1 raw onion
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 2 tbs. Each of chopped cabbage, french beans and carrot
  • 1 teaspoon ginger-garlic paste. Salt, butter & pepper powder to taste.

Pressure cook the dal along with the veggies and other ingredients. Liquidise in the mixer-grinder. Simmer butter and pepper and add the broth. This energising soup can be savoured with hot parathas and had as a complete meal.

Palak & Potato Soup

  • 2 cups wahsed and cut palak
  • 1 medium sized potato
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 heaped tbs. Milk powder
  • Salt, butter and pepper powder to taste

Pressure cook palak, potato and garlic with sufficient water. Blend it into a paste like consistency in your mixer grinder. Add milk power and blend well. Simmer butter and pepper and add the veg. Stock.

Beetroot Soup & Carrot Soup

  • 2 to 3 beetroots
  • 2 to 3 carrots
  • Salt, butter & pepper to taste

Pressure cook 3 beetroots till soft with their skins on. Peel the skin and blend in your mixer grinder adding water. Simmer butter and pepper and add the beetroot stock. Add a little sugar if you like. Similarly make carrot soup by steaming 3 carrots and blending them well in your mixer-grinder. Add one tbs. of milk powder and simmer with butter and pepper powder to a soup like consistency.

Corn Soup

  • 2 cups fresh corn kernels (They are sold in plastic bags too)
  • 2 tbs. Grated cheese
  • Salt, butter & pepper to taste

Boil the corn kernels in sufficient water. Make a paste of only half the quantity of corn in your mixer. Simmer butter and pepper and add the corn paste. Now add the water from the boiled corn kernels and mix the whole corn kernels. Simmer for a few minutes. Add 1 tbs. Of milk cream (optional). Serve with grated cheese.

Mushroom & Almond Soup

  • 1 packet mushrooms – washed and cut into pieces
  • 2 tbs. Almond powder
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbs. Corn flour
  • 1 teaspoon soya sauce (optional)
  • Salt, butter & pepper to taste

Boil mushrooms in sufficient water along with garlic. Simmer butter and pepper, add the almond powder and some chopped tulsi leaves, and add the boiled mushrooms along with the stock. Add soya sauce and thicken with cornflour.

Let your imagination run riot and make your own soups from different veggies. Add herbs like mint and basil. Sprinkle lime when needed. You can add croutons, milk powder and grated cheese where necessary. By trial and error you will get it right and no sooner you will develop an appetite for nourishing soups.

Delihgtful Desserts
These simple desserts made at home are sure to pamper your sweet tooth

On Navroze Day, the delicious, nourishing and thirst-quenching Falooda is served by the Iranis to welcome visitors at home who come to greet them Navroze Mubarak. It's simple to make and refreshing during the oncoming summer months.

  • 4 tbs. Tukmaria seeds (one tbs. For one glass)
  • (tukmaria seeds are also known as faloodas seeds)
  • cold milk as required in each glass
  • Rose syrup to taste
  • Thick vermicelli – boiled with sugar and a little vanilla essence and then strained
  • Vanilla ice cream/strawberry ice cream or butterscotch ice cream

Soak the tukmaria seeds in suficient water. After 5-10 minutes they will swell. Strain the water from them in a tea strainer. In a tall glass, add one tbs. of tukmaria seeds, one or two tbs. Of rose syrup and two tbs. Of cooled vermicelli. Fill the glass with cold milk. Mix well and lastly top with a scoop of vanilla, butterscotch or strawberry ice cream. Serve with a long spoon.

Bread Pudding/Chocolate Pudding

  • ½ litre milk
  • 1 or 2 eggs
  • 1 bread broken into bits
  • 3 tbs. Sugar
  • 1 tbs. Cardamom powder
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg powder (jailphal)
  • ½ cup mixed dry fruits – dates, raisins, figs, apricots, almonds, walnuts, pistachios or any dry fruit readily available on your kitchen shelf.

Add sugar, cardamom powder, nutmeg powder and broken bread pieces to the boiled milk. Beat an egg or two inside this mixture when the milk is warm and not hot. Stir in the chopped mixed dry fruits. Grease the box with a little butter in which the pudding is to be made and pour the whole mix. Pressure cook for 10 minutes or bake in a an oven.

Chocolate Pudding Same as the bread pudding but avoid cardamom and nutmeg powders and the chopped mixed dry fruits. Instead add 3 big heaped tablespoons of  bournvita, 1 teaspoons Cocoa powder and one teaspoon. Of coffee powder. Add sliced almonds and walnuts.

Rice Kheer
If there is a leftover of atleast one cup of cooked white rice, make a delicious kheer the next day.

  • 1 cup cooked white rice
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 2 tbs. Sugar
  • 2 tbs. Chopped mixed dry fruits
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom powder
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg powder

Blend the rice in your mixer-grinder, adding milk gradually, sugar, cardamom and nutmeg powders. Heat the mixture in a vessel adding butter and the chopped mixed dry fruits till it turns into a creamy consistency.

Oats & Cornflex Surprise

  • 3/4th cup oats
  • 3/4th cup cornflex (plain or strawberry)
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 tbs. Sugar
  • 2 tbs. Of chopped mixed dry fruits or slivers of a few almonds and dates.

Mix oats and cornflex in a vessel. Add milk, sugar and chopped mixed dry fruits. Heat till the mixture thickens to a creamy consistency. This dessert can even be had as a morning breakfast along with hot buttered toast.

Fruit salad with cream
Chop some pulpy fruits like apples, bananas, sweet papayas, figs, mangoes (in season) along with black and green grapes. Mix all the fruits in a fancy glass bowl.

For the milk cream – in Half a litre milk, whip and egg, 1 teaspoon vanilla essence nd sugar to taste. You can substitute vanilla essence for cardamom and nutmeg powers. Keep the mixture on slow heat and go on churning till the milk thickens into cream. When cooled, mix it to your bowl of fruits. Place strawberries on top of the cream or blanch a few almonds and walnuts for decoration. You can top your jellies with milk cream only after the jellies are set.

Apple and oats pancake

  • 1 cup oats
  • 1 cup choped apples
  • 1 or 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamom powder
  • 2 tablespoons thick curd or yoghurt
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water

Blend all the ingredients along with water into a smooth batter. Grease the non-stick pan or roti tawa with a little oil. Pour the whole mixture and cook till it turns light brown on oneside. Flip and cook the other side till it also turns brown. Cool. Cut into triangles. Serve plain or topped with honey or marmalade of your choice. Ideal snacking for children.

Chocolate Brownie/cake

  • ½ packet butter 1/2 cup coco powder
  • 1 tablespoon bournvita
  • 1 cup flour (you can substitute wheat flour instead of 'maida', like I do)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 or 2 cups sugar according to taste
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla essence

Melt bournvita with butter. In a bowl mix flour, 2 whipped eggs, sugar, milk, vanilla essence and baking powder.
Blend well to a thick creamy consistency.
Microwave for 10 minutes.
Cut into pieces and serve with vanilla icecream.

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