The festive season of Navratri is here, and it is time for both revelry and fasting. The auspicious occasion is characterised by the indigenous cuisine especially fashioned for those who are fasting on all or some of the nine days of the festival, to invoke the energy of the mother goddess and purify the body and mind.
Navratri fasting rules vary from community to community; the basic premise is that the food should be healthy and light. The preferred ingredients include kuttu atta, singhara atta, nuts, fresh vegetables, fruit, milk, yoghurt and makhanas. Rock salt or sendha namak is used instead of regular salt since it is unprocessed.
As the festival marks the seasonal changes, the immunity levels tend to get low, so you must focus on eating healthy immunity rich foods while fasting, try our Homemade Energy Bars.
For those who have a sweet tooth, this can seem like a time with very limited options. But if you take a closer look at traditional sweets and desserts, you’ll find that simple substitution of unhealthy ingredients with healthier ones can give you sattvic dessert options which are super low-calorie and healthy as well.
Here are three healthy sweet dishes that you can try this Navratri season without worrying about gaining any extra weight in the process
1.Amaranth Porridge with Roasted Apple
Amaranth Yogurt Parfait is a delicious dessert that you can easily prepare at home. Besides being delicious, it is highly nutritional as it is made from amaranth seeds which are rich in carbohydrates, dietary fibre, protein, calcium, iron, Vitamin B6 and magnesium.
Cooked Amaranth of about 100 grams provides 103 calories. It has a moderate amount of dietary minerals (iron, manganese, and phosphorus) and high lysine and protein components.
The best part of Amaranth grains is that they are gluten-free, which allows gluten intolerant people to eat them without worries.
½ cup uncooked amaranth, 1/2 cup water, 1 cup skim milk, ¼ teaspoon fast salt, 1 large apple, 1 teaspoon honey, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, 1 teaspoon pumpkin seeds, 2 tablespoons walnut pieces.
1. Drain and rinse amaranth. Combine with one cup of milk, water, and salt. Bring amaranth to a boil, and reduce to a simmer (all the way to low.) Cover and let simmer for 25 minutes until the amaranth is soft but there is still some liquid left. Remove from heat and let sit for 5 to 10 more minutes to thicken amaranth. Add a bit more milk to thin the texture out if desired.
2. Toss together the 1 teaspoon honey with the walnut pieces. Roast until the walnuts are toasted and the honey has dried, 10 to 15 minutes. Walnuts will become quite fragrant when done.
3. Along with the walnuts, dice the apple and toss with the remaining spices. Roast in a roasting pan for 15 minutes, until the apples are tender.
4. Remove the pan from the heat and let it stand, covered for 5 to 10 minutes. Divide amaranth among bowls and top with pumpkin seeds
2.Puff Amaranth Parfait
Popped amaranth makes for a great cereal option. It is easy to make as well, and is not only delicious but also highly nutritional.
How to Puff Amaranth/Rajgira
Here we get the raw Amaranth grain and it is very easy to pop them at home. It is similar to how you pop popcorn in a large pot. For puffing up Amaranth all you add is a teaspoon of grain in the hot pot, shake it a bit and they start puffing up instantly. You will get a big bowl of puffed up Amaranth in a matter of minutes. Yes due to the puffing, some grains scatter all over hence it is advisable to use a high-ended pot.
- 2 tbsp low-fat yogurt
- 3 tbsp pomegranate
- 1/3 cup chopped banana slice
- 4-5 strawberry
- 1 – 2 dry figs
- 4-5 roasted almonds
- 1 tbsp Amaranth seeds
- Honey optional
- Heat a nonstick pan put 1 tbsp of dry amaranth grains into the hot pan.
- Peel and chopped with banana, strawberry & pomegranate.
- Chop the dry fig, almonds and keep them aside.
- Layer the glass with 1to 2 tbsp yogurt
- Drizzle .5 tsp honey or as required on the yoghurt. Then make a layer of the fruits. Add the dry fig, almonds & layer with some of the popped amaranths.
- Repeat the same layers of yogurt
- Top with the portion of strawberry
- Serve the amaranth yoghurt parfait immediately.
3.Sago Yogurt Parfait
Sago or Sabudana is one of the rich sources of carbohydrates, and the white globules are known for their quick energy-boosting property. Sago contains a nice amount of Iron, a tiny amount of protein with a feeble amount of Calcium, Vitamins, and other minerals. 100 grams serving of Sago can yield up to 350 Calories with 85.5 grams of carbohydrates and 0.2 grams of Protein.
• 1 cup Tapioca Flour (Sago), soaked, boiled
• 1 cup low-fat yogurt
• 1 Ripe Banana, sliced
• 1 Apple, cubed
• 1/2 tsp cardamom powder
• 2 tablespoon Honey
• 2 tablespoon almonds, roasted, sliced
1. We begin by soaking the tapioca pearls in water for about 4 hours. Then later drain the water and boil it in water with 1/2 cup of water for about 5 minutes till it is soft and done.
2. Keep all the fruits ready and cut. Mix the boiled sago with yoghurt, fruits, and nuts in a bowl. Drizzle the honey over it.
3. Serve your Sago Yogurt Parfait ( Creamy Tapioca Pearls With Assorted Fruits) for a quick breakfast for a healthy start.