I’m Creating a Healthy Indian Food Recipe eBook!

sarika-akansha-recipe-ebook

Guess what guys, I’m creating my first recipe eBook! I’m partnering with my mother to develop a healthy Indian food recipe eBook with 40-50 recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, and beverages. We will also include a guide on how to build your own spice kit, a grocery check list, and general tips on how to cook Indian food and make it a bit healthier.

The idea of creating my own product has been on the back of my mind for a few months, ever since my boyfriend and I did a little prioritization exercise (on a side note, would you guys like personal growth/productivity tips? I’ve been thinking about sharing a few). However at that point, I didn’t think it would be feasible to create my own product for multiple reasons —time, confidence, and resources as the top three.

Though when I made the decision to leave my job at LinkedIn, time was finally on my side. After some encouragement from friends and family I got the confidence to pursue this project. As for the resources, we are figuring it out as we go, but having my mom as a partner makes it much more manageable.

turmeric-indian-chicken

The survey I sent out a couple of weeks ago, as well as general conversations in the C&G Girl Gang (join in on the fun here) really helped me validate the need for something like this. Here are some of the interesting findings from the survey:

  • General stats: 217 respondents, 92% female, 34% South Asian
  • Top three reasons people cook: to be healthier, to control their ingredients in their food, to save money.
  • On a scale of 1-5, the average skill-level with Indian cooking is a 2.36
  • 30% of respondents have never cooked Indian food in their life!
  • 2/3 of respondents want to learn how to make Indian food healthier while over half want to learn how to make Indian food in general!
  • Not too surprising, but South Asians are most likely to be vegetarians (41%) compared to other ethnic groups (11%)

There were a couple of questions that I forgot to ask (rookie mistake). The biggest one question being “what Indian food would you guys like to learn how to cook and/or making healthier?” Let me know in the comments or feel free to email me at akansha@citrusandgold.com.

As for our timeline for the recipe eBook, we would like to get this to market before the holidays!If you’d like to participate in feedback sessions or get the latest news on the eBook you can sign up below. Thank you all so much for your support. We really couldn’t create this without you.

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Berry and Beets Smoothie (My First Video!)

berry-beets-smoothie

berry-beets-smoothie

Blogging used to be the bread and butter of this Citrus & Gold. Citrus & Gold was merely a blog last year — all I did was write. But now it’s grown to include a thriving FB community, a online book club (more details to come), events, a recipe e-book and much more.

I’ll fill you in on the details soon, but with all these other projects blogging consistently has been hard! I am still aiming for a weekly posts because blogging is what spear-headed all of these other projects. Sometimes I feel bad that I am not able to get to all the blog post ideas that are collecting dust in Evernote. But there will be a time and place for them all!

Writing is what helped me start my whole wellness brand and I have no desire to put the pen down anytime soon! However, (since I’m not doing enough already) I recently added one more extension to my brand…videos! I did my first video collaboration with So She Slays not too long ago and we created one of my favorite smoothies.

This smoothie is perfect for when you are craving a sweet treat but don’t want to compromise your nutrition! My roommate and I kind of accidentally discovered the wonders of beets in smoothies when we were trying to copy the Pressed Juicery’s Strawberry Almond juice.

Now this smoothie tastes nothing like that (the beets have a much more powerful flavor), it’s still delicious!

BERRY AND BEETS SMOOTHIE

Serving: 2 16 oz servings

1 cup of berries – frozen or unfrozen. After trying it a few times I think strawberries are the best for this.
1 beet: I bought mine steamed and peeled from Trader Joe’s
2 medjool dates, pitted
1 tbsp of chia seeds
1 cup coconut water
1 1/2 cups almond milk
2 scoops Vital Protein collagen peptides
3-4 ice cubes

Blend all of the ingredients and enjoy! It’s a super simple recipe that is perfect for summer :).

Sweet Potato Cashew Cream Sauce With Brown Rice Pasta

sweet potato cashew cream sauce

sweet potato cashew cream sauce

This sweet potato cashew cream sauce recipe kind of happened by accident.

I was perusing through Mckel Hill’s book Nutrition Stripped when I stumbled upon a recipe for a butternut squash vegan cream sauce. It sounded so damn good that I was determined to make it that night (and I was excited because I had all the ingredients at home!).

Except when I got home I realized my butternut squash went bad :(. I was so invested in making it that I decided to go rogue and make the sauce with sweet potatoes instead.

With a few tweaks, here is what I got:

Sweet Potato Cashew Cream Sauce + Brown Rice Pasta

Ingredients:

8 oz brown rice pasta
1.5 cups peas (I used frozen)
2 small/medium sweet potatoes, about 2 cups
1 cup nutritional yeast
1 cup unsweetened almond milk or light coconut milk
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
¼ cup cashews
½ cup vegetable or chicken broth (more or less depending on the preferred consistency)

Directions:

Sauce:

Soak cashews in water for 2 hours. If in a rush you can soak in warmer water for less time but do not put it in boiling water.

Preheat oven to 400F to roast the sweet potatoes.

Peel sweet potatoes and slice them to roast. Mix sweet potatoes, olive oil and salt and pepper into a bowl. Line tray with aluminum foil place sweet potatoes on tray. Pop it into the oven for 25 minutes.

Once the sweet potatoes are done cooking add them to your Vitamix (or a powerful blender) along with the nutritional yeast, dijon mustard, cashews, almond milk and chicken stock. Pulse slowly, and add more liquid if needed. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Pasta:

Set water to boil and add a dash of salt. Once the water begins to bubble, add pasta and cook on medium/medium high for 15-16 minutes (or follow instructions for your pasta). Add peas to flash cook for 3 minutes and then strain water from pasta. Add a little olive oil to pasta if desired.

You can pour the sauce over the pasta and warm it on low heat. But I liked using a separate saucepan to keep the sauce and pasta separate.

The sweet potato cashew cream sauce would be a perfect topper for sautéed vegetables or zoodles!