It’s been 7 years that I left my full-time advertising career as a copy supervisor to follow my passion on a full-time basis. It wasn’t easy. And especially when I had no idea from where to start. The world was not-so-digital back then. I, however, decided to plunge in the big food world and swam my way with one stroke at a time.
In the quest to prove myself right and be proud of my decision, I had my ways to tame the newbie me in the culinary world. Never imagined being your own boss could be this taxing. But thankfully it helped me.
A few days ago, I shared my journey with Kalyan Karmakar, the very famous Food & Travel Writer and Author of the ‘The Travelling Belly’ (the book) and ‘The Finely Chopped’ (the blog). This was a LIVE interaction to do a ‘Foodocracy For Her’ chat with him, where he speaks with women entrepreneurs in the Food & Beverage industry. And since then, I am truly amazed with the love that has been showered from all corners. Through this column, I want to thank each one who reached out to me through direct messages on Instagram.
The path I have traversed has never been looked back. And because I still have a long way to go, I never got time to think about those little milestones that helped me reach where I am today. It was this chat that made me realise and gave me some silent moments of gratitude. My heart was melting reading that many of you could relate to my journey and have decided to not give up too soon.
What struck me in this entire conversation was when Kalyan sir asked me whether I am a kind boss to myself. He also asked if I treat myself with regular incentives. And this got me thinking.
I have been trying recipes and innovating with millets thinking about how beautifully that would add value to my participants’ lives. And honestly, I am glad to be able to do so and I feel proud to have that opportunity. But yes, there are moments of truth, too. There are times when I go sleepless and times when I skip my breakfasts and feel miserable. Times when a dish turns out perfect but I miss out on the perfect time to enjoy it. Times when I get too engrossed in one-on-one workshop sessions and simultaneously handling unending household chores that I miss out on my own comforts.
Today’s recipe is an expression of love and a reminder to self. Reminder that success is not always achieved by stepping out of your comfort zone. Sometimes a little pause charges you up with better vision and momentum. I will try to bring those moments of pause once in a while. You can try it, too. It is a part of my online 5 days millets workshop and I demonstrate it live along with many other recipes.
Read more for the step-by-step recipe of Millet Stuffed Potato Boats and let me know if you enjoyed relishing it just the way I enjoyed creating it for you.
Millet Stuffed Colourful Potato Boats
Ingredients: (Makes 12 boats)
- 6 medium sized potatoes
- 1 cup foxtail millet soaked and cooked
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup bell peppers, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup boiled kidney beans
- 1/4 cup steamed corns
- Some fresh coriander leaves
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- Rock salt to taste
- 1-2 tsp red chili flakes
- 10-12 cherry tomatoes
- Dried herbs likes rosemary, oregano (optional)
- 3 cheese cubes
1. Wash potatoes thoroughly and do not peel.
2. Cut in halves vertically and prick them nicely with a fork.
3. In a small bowl, mix 1 tablespoon olive oil, rock salt, dried herbs and some red chili flakes. Coat all potato halves with this mixture nicely. Leave them to be marinated for a good 15-20 minutes.
4. Once marinated, place these marinated potatoes on a baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes in a preheated oven at 180 C.
5. Meanwhile, you can start with foxtail millet stuffing.
6. Heat one tablespoon olive oil in a large pan. Add onions and bell peppers and saute until tender. It will take about 5 minutes.
7. Now add steamed corn, cooked foxtail millet, boiled kidney beans, spices and salt. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the mixture dries up.
8. Once done, add lemon juice, cherry tomatoes and coriander leaves. Allow it to cool and settle on its own.
9. When potatoes are fork tender, remove from the oven. Once they are easy to handle, make a cavity without taking out the pulp. It is done by just pressing the flesh with a spoon.
10. Now fill this cavity with foxtail millet colourful stuffing.
11. Grate cheese over each potato boat and put them back in the oven for grilling at 200 degree Celsius for 10 minutes or till the cheese forms a net to hold the stuffing. Make sure the cheese is not over cooked or burnt.
12. Once done, you can always drizzle any of your favourite dips over the baked and grilled potato boats.
13. Serve hot.
Health benefits of foxtail millet and potatoes
Foxtail millet is rich in dietary fibre, protein, healthy micros (vitamin and minerals) and low in fat. This millet also helps to regulate blood pressure, thus reducing the chances of blockage in the heart that results in cardiac arrest or stroke. It also helps in reduction of LDL levels in the body.
Potatoes are rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, which make them very healthy. Potatoes carry a variety of impressive health benefits, including improved blood sugar control, reduced heart disease risk and higher immunity. They may also improve digestive health and combat signs of aging. They are also naturally gluten-free.
(Shalini Rajani is the founder of Crazy Kadchi and holds innovative Millets Cooking Workshops for all age groups.)
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