The Essence of Cooking
                                                                                    By Marilynn Stark

Cooking is chemistry.  All of life and each living being is of chemical comprise, so that each act of cooking is a supportive event in the life and health for those who eat from the cook's handiwork.  To simply conceive of the taking of food for its maximum worth can be an holistic idea, making each day and each meal the equivalent of a prayer.  Here you will find some of the ideas which have come to me in the form of recipes for healthful and pleasing results.  The cuisine I follow is Indian vegetarian and grain cooking.  Furthermore, recently I have been learning of Ayurvedic principles for proper nutrition.



Index of Recipes

Click onto the icon to go to a recipe

     AmikShaaturuSkadadhi Vaasita Pakva or Spiced Cooked Cheese of Turkish Curd 

     Apple-Chenna Scramble

     Carrot Bulgur/Carrot Halvah

     Cinnamon-Spiced Paneer with Peas and Cashews

     Cream of Squash Soup

     Feta-Italian Cheese Basil-Mustard Vegetable Pizza

     Hindu Mixed Vegetable Corn Cake

     Hung Kefir Cheese Wheat Pilaf

     Mango-Mango Ice Cream

     Spiced Cooked Cheese of Turkish Curd (Kefir)  (AmikShaaturuSkadadhi   Vaasita Pakva)

     Spiced Spinach Chutney

     Virabhadra Mung Bean Soup (Viirabhadra Mudga Suupa)

     Whey of Kefir Chick Pea Soup

     Whey of Kefir Clove Soup

     Whey of Whole Milk Urad Dahl Soup

     Zucchini-Raisin Vegetarian Soup


Carrot Bulgur / Carrot Halvah

This dish can be served variously as a main dish at any meal.  Due to its hearty grain composition of bulgur, it may be preferred as a breakfast dish or cereal.  Carrot bulgur can be eaten as a dish by itself, or it  can be eaten in the tradition of cereal with milk.  Please note also that this recipe provides for an excellent and nutritious sweet, carrot halvah, when the bulgur preparation is simply left out; therefore, there are two recipes here.  Note also that the ingredients call for a modest amount of honey, so that this amount can be varied as according to taste for the level of sweetness desired.
1/2 cup bulgur
1and 1/2 cups milk
2 and 1/2 tablespoons ulsi ghee*
1/4 teaspoon fennel seed
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander seeds
10 tablespoons hung yogurt cheese**
1/2 cup shredded carrots
3 tablespoons almonds
[note: 1 tbsp. ground almonds
2 tbsp. slivered almonds]
3 teaspoons honey*  (preferably 3 tbsp of jaggery)
salt to taste (1/4 tsp.)
Place 1 and 1/2 tablespoons ulsi ghee in a kadai and gently heat.  When it is hot, add the 1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds, and brown them.  Now add 1/2 cup of bulgur, and stir fry it until it is darkened nicely.  When it begins to smoke from the ghee and is quite dark, step up the stir frying  and keep cooking it.  After this stage has been realized for one or two minutes, the  milk should be added.  Cook it at a low bubbling for a while, stirring it frequently as the milk is soaked in.  Once cooked, the milk will be well absorbed, and 1/4 teaspoon salt can added after it is removed from the heat, and stirred in. 
Place 1 tablespoon ghee in a saucepan.  Add 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander, and brown this.  Now add the hung yogurt cheese, and fry it into the ghee, making a paste.  Once this is well-mixed and cooked, add the 1/2 cup shredded carrots (which can be carrots processed by a blender.)  These carrots must be cooked into the paste, thickening it.  Once they are somewhat cooked, add the honey* and mix it into the cooking process.
Now add one tablespoon of ground-up almonds, along with two tablespoons of slivered almonds, and retain the cooking process.  Once these almonds are about to lose their crunchiness, the yogurt cheese-carrot-almond halvah is ready to be added into the bulgur.
On low heat add the halvah into the wheat, adding enough milk, say, two tablespoons, so as to give it a heating buffer.  Mix this as one is combined with the other over the heat.  Now sprinkle the cereal with ground almonds as a garnish when it is removed from the heat.
These proportions serve 6-8 people.

*Note: As according to Ayurvedic principle of nutrition, it is not advisable to cook honey.  Not having known this before this year (2008), this recipe stands to be corrected as to that ingredient of honey.  The best substitute would be jaggery, say, 3 tablespoons.

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The yogurt-cheese-carrot-almond mix can be served as a halvah in itself as a dessert food, and a nutritious one.  
*Ulsi ghee is prepared by heating butter in a fairly deep pan or a kadai on medium to medium low heat until the impurities settle out in the process.  Dense little collections of whitish substance will begin to appear as the butter bubbles over the heat.  The heating process can be stopped either before or after these dense bodies begin to turn brown, depending upon the taste for ghee one has.  Once removed from the heat, the ghee preparation is strained through a strainer lined with cheese cloth.  The ghee will be golden or light brown as according to the extent of the heating desired, less or more, as described, respectively.  Ghee can also be bought in Indian food specialty shops.
**Hung yogurt cheese is made by placing yogurt in the center of a double- or triple-layered piece of cheese cloth, and gathering up the four corners to a tie.  The bag thus formed should be hung in the air at an appropriate place where the liquid can drain out and be caught, such as from a faucet in a sink, a cabinet knob over a sink if handy, or in whatever other way suitable.  The yogurt will drain over an eight-hour period, forming a thick, white paste which should be collected and refrigerated. 
Note: a kadai is an Indian cooking pan which is hemi-spherical, much like a Chinese wokKadais can be bought at many Indian specialty food stores, and they are extremely efficient for fast-action cooking techniques which require constant attention and stirring, such as stir-fry vegetables.  The fundamental principle topologically which makes the kadai a superior cooking pan is its constant curvature, which curvature lends a momentum to each cooking stroke.  A cooking stroke can be such as a mixing  motion, or a stir-frying technique akin to tossing. The efficiency of the cooking is therefore enhanced greatly, which is why cooks prefer a kadai for stir frying vegetables, wherein each stir lifts the vegetable from direct contact with the heated metal, so as to prevent an instantaneous overcooking.  In this way the vegetables can be browned to taste without burning, and which browning would be less possible if a flat surface were being utilized as a pan. 

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1996 by Marilynn Stark   All Rights Reserved.   (Please use in good health.)


Apple-Chenna Scramble
This dish can be served as a feature with coriander chutney and chapati as a light snack, or with a pear chutney and sliced rye bread. Or, since it is protein-rich, it might be served as a main dish with rice, dahl and Vedic vegetables along with chutney and chapati.
chenna * (about two and one quarter cups)
3 tbsp. ulsi ghee
1-2 chopped hot green peppers
1 tbsp. chopped ginger
2 tbsp. whole cloves
1/2 tsp. mustard seeds
1 tbsp. caraway seeds
4 tbsp. chopped fresh basil
1 diced Gala apple
2 tbsp. chopped walnuts
8 tbsp. light cream
Place 3 tablespoons of ulsi (pure) ghee in a kadai or a medium-sized saucepan and heat until hot enough to burst the  mustard seeds upon contact. Then add 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds, cover the kadai and wait for the bursting to subside. Also modify the heat as the bursting goes on to a lesser amount, down to medium. Next add the caraway seeds and let them enter the cooking process just briefly - for a few seconds. Now add the cloves, and stir the mixture adequately. Then add the chopped hot green peppers and chopped ginger. Let this mixture cook until well-blended. Once the spices have blended thoroughly into the ghee, which takes only a few minutes, strain the entire mixture for its spiced ghee through a small strainer; use a spoon to remove any whole cloves which may have adhered to the kadai, and continue cooking with the spiced ghee in the kadai. Place the newly gained spiced ghee in the kadai, and add in the walnuts and then chopped basil to that spiced ghee, stirring them frequently. The heat should be moderated in deference to the walnuts, so that medium to medium-low will suffice. Cook this mixture until the basil has been suffused into the ghee.  Add in the diced Gala apples and immediately thereafter 4 tablespoons light cream. Cook this mixture over medium to medium-high heat for a while, and then add the chenna. Stir fry this apple-chenna mixture over medium-low to low heat for a few minutes. Once the mixture has cooked long enough to dry considerably, add in the remaining 4 tablespoons of light cream and keep stir-frying it until the moisture is nearly gone.
*Chenna is Indian cheese, a delicate and fundamental cheese made from milk in a direct fashion. It is close to American  pot cheese, and can be made easily. This recipe calls for the cheese which comes from eight cups of milk, itself about a two and one quarter cups in amount. To make chenna, boil eight cups of milk, then reduce the heat enough to keep it at a gentle boil. Now add the coagulant of your choice, listed below. The milk will soon curdle of course dramatically, and allow this curdling to resolve as more and more white curds will separate from the greenish-yellow whey. As you observe the curdling to completion, turn off the heat. Now gather in the chenna through a straining process, either using a colander or a strainer lined generously with four layers of cheese cloth. Once the whey has been separated from the chenna, the curds must be rinsed under cold running tap water. This rinsing is to remove the flavor of the coagulant.  Now arrange for the remaining fluid to be drained from it, first by gathering in the four corners of the cheesecloth and gently twisting from the gathered corners as a base. Then simply suspend the cheesecloth sack in the air in a makeshift fashion, such as from a faucet or even from a ring-stand.  Let the final draining occur for the next hour, and the chenna is ready for use. If you use a colander alone, simply leave the chenna in the colander but suspended in some way, say, over a mixing bowl which can catch the draining fluid.
The three possible coagulants are as follows:
  • 1 cup sour plain yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons cider table vinegar in 3 tablespoons water
  • 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

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2003 by Marilynn Lea Stark    All Rights Reserved.


Cream of Squash Soup
The nature of squash lends itself to a soup, as you will find in this recipe.  The combination of milk and cheese added in to comprise the base carries the flavor of squash nicely.  This soup was actually developed over a charcoal grill.  The choice of squash should be buttercup, and the flavor added  by barbecuing it is indescribable. 
one buttercup squash, medium-sized
four tablespoons ulsi ghee
2 teaspoons cumin seed
1 jalapeno pepper chopped
4 cups milk
4-5 tablespoons chenna or feta cheese
Chunk the squash and place aside.  Heat the ghee over medium heat, and when it is hot, add in the cumin seeds.  Once the cumin is brown, add the chopped jalapeno pepper and let this simmer until the flavors are well intermixed.  Now add the chunked squash and stir it into the spiced ghee, and let it simmer in a covered vessel until well-cooked.  Once the squash is totally cooked, remove it from the heat and mash it with a potato masher.  Place the mashed squash on the heat again, immediately adding the cheese, whether chenna or feta, along with the milk.  Then simmer this mixture over low to medium-low heat for a few minutes, stirring it occasionally.  More or less milk can be added as according to the consistency of soup desired.
These ingredients should provide four to six servings.

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2003 by Marilynn Stark  All Rights Reserved
Feta-Italian Cheese Basil-Mustard Vegetable Pizza
This pizza is made with the taste of feta cheese in mind, while the unique presence of basil is superimposed upon the mustard seeds.  Thus, feta cheese forms the superlative base of the pizza, while it is suffused with the enchanting flavor mixture of basil over mustard seeds.  The vegetables make up the second layer, and are topped with a choice shredded Italian cheese for an extra nutritional richness.
1 pizza dough
2 tbsp. ulsi ghee
6-8 oz. feta cheese
1.5 - 2 tbsp. black mustard seeds
several fresh basil leaves (about 20 of moderate size)
chopped-up zucchini and green peppers (1.5 c. total)
shredded Italian cheese of the mixture of six: Mozzarella, smoked Provolone, Parmesan, Romano, Fontina and A-siago
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a large pizza pan and place aside.  Chop up zucchini and green peppers into chunks.  Place the pizza dough on the pizza pan, making a slight ridge on the outer perimeter so as to hold in the juices, that is, if you are working with a fresh bread dough.  Brush the ulsi ghee over the pizza dough; then sprinkle the mustard seeds over the dough.  Now place basil leaves everywhere on the ghee/mustard seed base, preferably cutting them or tearing them so as to unloose the juice of the leaves more immediately while the pizza cooks.  Now crumble the feta cheese over the spicy preparation on the dough so that this cheese layer will be generous.  Next, add the chunked vegetables.  Over these vegetables will be sprinkled the shredded Italian six-cheese mixture.  Now bake the pizza in the oven until the crust is golden brown, and this should be checked on in 25-30 minutes.  Cut with a pizza cutter, serve with your favorite salad, and enjoy a nice pizza.

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Hindu Mixed Vegetable Corn Cake
This dish forms a complete and substantial vegetarian meal.  It is rich in the natural sweetness of fresh corn while also enchanting for its spicy flavors, well-steeped in the succulent juice of fresh kernels of corn even besides the corn cake foundation or crust.  Chenna adds a subtle sweetness while hung yogurt cheese gives an intriguing contrast to the taste of the spices.  Hindu  mixed vegetable corn cake might be served with rice, a chutney and a glass of lassi as complement.


2 cups fresh corn kernels (from about 3 ears medium-size corn); if frozen corn is used, drain the water out first; this allotment is for the corn cake proper
1 and 1/4 to 1 and 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels (from about 2 ears medium-size corn-on-the-cob); this is for the topping of mixed vegetables
1 3/4 tablespoons chopped ginger root
4 tablespoons chopped jalapeno peppers
3 tablespoons cumin seeds
4 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1 cup shredded carrots (from 2 medium-size carrots); 1 medium carrot cut into discs
1 and 1/4 cups rye flour
5 cups fresh chenna or ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons raisins
1/2 cup peas
1 cup hung yogurt cheese
2-3 tablespoons slivered almonds
2-3 tablespoons oregano leaves (dried)
Place the 2 cups of fresh corn kernels in a food processor and process them until smooth.  Then add the ginger, jalapeno peppers, 2 tablespoons cumin seeds and 1 cup shredded carrots, and process these added ingredients further.  Once the mixture is well-formed, add the 1 and 1/4 cups rye flour by one-tablespoon increments to the food processor bowl through the add-in aperture until it has been added to completion and is thoroughly mixed into the corn cake dough.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Grease a large 14" inch pizza pan, and spread the corn cake dough across the surface.  Then brush onto the dough some ulsi ghee.  Now sprinkle 1 tablespoon cumin seeds onto the dough, followed by the chopped cilantro leaves.  Add then the 5 cups chenna or ricotta cheese across the corn cake evenly, and pour next the honey onto its surface.  Place the carrot discs over the chenna to form the foundation of the next layer.  To these carrot discs, which should cover quite completely the chenna cheese, add the second installment of fresh corn kernels in the cited amount of 1 and 1/4 to 1 and 1/2 cups.  The peas are added after this, followed by 2 tablespoons raisins.  Sprinkle oregano onto the now completed layer of mixed vegetables, then add the hung yogurt cheese in various clumps to its surface.  Finally, sprinkle the slivered almonds across the hung yogurt cheese layer.
Bake the corn cake for about 25-30 minutes until the edges of the batter are seen to have browned at least slightly.  Remove from the oven and cut with a pizza rolling knife once it has cooled just a little.  Hint: you will find that the cake will stay together more firmly when lifting the triangular pieces with a spatula if it is allowed to cool somewhat first. 
(July 12, 2004)
May 25, 2004

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 2004  by Marilynn Stark  All Rights Reserved


Mango-Mango Ice Cream

Mango-Mango is a zesty ice cream, full-bodied, smooth and nutritiously replete with ingredients so natural and good for you that they should exonerate anyone from enjoying a dish of it.  The mango itself is considered the king of fruits by Indians.  If you are aware of Ayurveda qualities in food, you would be apprised that besides being succulent and sweet the ripe mango is sweet and heating.  It balances the tridosha.  The ripe mango also energizes.

This ice cream was named Mango-Mango since there is a second mango ingredient, a spice made from unripe, dried, green mangoes called amchur powder (Hindi for mango is aam and chur means powder.) This spice gives a tart if not sour flavor.  According to Ayurveda analysis, the green mango is sour, astringent and cooling.  If eaten alone or in great quantities, the green mango can aggravate the doshas -- particularly the pitta dosha.  However, since ice cream itself depresses the pitta dosha due to its low temperature, this effect should be counterbalanced accordingly.  Moreover, the spice cardamom, another ingredient in Mango-Mango ice cream, is of a warming quality.  Cardamom also balances the tridosha, and contributes to both the sweet and pungent tastes.

Other health-giving attributes of mangos, sweet mangos, include:

  • rich in such antioxidants such as Vitamin C and beta-carotene
  • low in Calories
  • rich source of fiber
  • rich in potassium
  • immune system boost through the presence of bioflavonoids
  • in Ayurvedic thinking mangoes nutrify the seven tissues (dhaatus)

The amchur powder also contributes to the smooth quality of Mango-Mango ice cream while the ripe mango contributes a contrasting fiber effect.  There may be a few pieces of mango scattered throughout if the cook did not want to efface totally the fine fruit source as to form and original consistency.  

When concocting this recipe, the first goal had been to create an ice cream using stevia, a non-Caloric herbal sweetener, so as to lessen the Caloric value of the ice cream.  This recipe calls for some sugar since sugar also contributes to the overall consistency of ice cream; however, the usual amount of sugar that would be appropriate for ice cream is cut in half with the combined use of stevia.

In summary then, for a delicious, semi-sweet and exceedingly nutritious ice cream that can hardly be called a dessert if a dessert might be regarded as that which one should not have for reasons of health enter into the fine tasting and most unusual treat of a dish of Mango-Mango ice cream, understanding that there is no match for homemade ice cream in the first place; perhaps then you will be ready to try Mango-Mango.  With such proper scientific backing as noted here, this dessert can truly be a recommended part of your diet.



2 cups half and half
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup amchur powder
20 drops of stevia (30 drops will make the ice cream that much sweeter)
1 tsp cardamom extract
1/2 cup chunked, fresh, sweet and juicy mango (this is about 120g)
2-4 tbsp small mango pieces or to taste that are to remain whole

These ingredients yield 3 cups of batter for ice cream after they have been mixed together before being processed in the ice cream maker.

Add the sugar, amchur powder and half and half to a mixing bowl and mix them with an electric mixer until smooth, or use a blender if preferred.  Then add in the stevia and cardamom extract, and continue mixing the ingredients.  Once the last two, subtle ingredients just added are well distributed by the mixing process, begin to mix in the mango chunks by adding in three or four pieces at a time.  Add 2-4 tablespoons of small mango pieces to the mix after mixing, stirring the mango pieces in with a spoon so that they will remain whole.  Once all of the fresh mango has been thus thoroughly blended into the mixture and the mango pieces have been distributed throughout, place this mix in the freezer as preparation for the churning action of the ice cream maker.  Depending on the temperature of the freezer, the mix will form a proper consistency for the ice cream maker in an hour or two.  The mix should not be so frozen that it will block the mechanical action of the clappers in the ice cream maker.  A semi-solid batch with some liquid mix remaining should make the mixture ready for the ice cream processor.

Following the instructions for your own ice cream maker, process the mix until well aerated, and then remove the Mango-Mango ice cream.  It should be of optimum consistency for an exceedingly fine dish.  It can be placed in the freezer for at least a half hour before eating, or as according to preference, it can be eaten straight out of the ice cream maker without further freezing.


2 cups half and half = 630 Cal
1/4 cup sugar = 180
1/4 cup amchur powder = 107
20 - 30 drops of stevia = 0
1 tsp cardamom extract = 0
1/2 cup chunked fresh, sweet and juicy mango = 25 

TOTAL CAL per 3 cups ice cream produced   = 942 Cal

Note: usually a recipe for ice cream without stevia would call for 1/2 cup of sugar with the proportions cited above, amounting to 180 more Calories and giving a total Caloric content of 1122 Calories.  This reduction in Calories saved by using a substitute for sugar, stevia with no Calories, amounts to 16%.

Copyright 2010 All Rights Reserved by Marilynn Stark 

August 3, 2010

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Spiced Spinach Chutney


4 - 5 cups of fresh, cleaned spinach leaves
1 tsp ghee
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp black sesame seeds
1 tbsp chopped, fresh ginger root
2 tbsp blackstrap molasses
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tbsp milk

     Clean the spinach with a cold-water rinse leaf-by-leaf.  Steam the spinach for a few minutes until it is thoroughly cooked.
     Place the ghee in a kadai and take it to heat -- about medium high -- for the spices about to be added.  Once the ghee is thus sizzling, add the fennel seeds and sesame seeds.  When the spices have cooked, add in the chopped ginger and brown it.  Turn down the heat from medium high to a low setting.  Next, add the blackstrap molasses and the cayenne pepper.  Stir this mixture well, and as the molasses will tend to burn if too much heat is applied for too long, be sure to turn the heat down just before the molasses is added.  The milk is added just before the mixture is finished being prepared, stirring it briefly into the chutney before the kadai is taken off the burner.
     Place the steamed spinach and the cooked, spicy molasses mixture in a blender or food processor.  Simply liquefy this preparation on high speed until it is smooth. This chutney should be of a soft, buttery consistency.  The ingredients listed above will make about a cup of Spiced Spinach Chutney.
     In fact, Spiced Spinach Chutney was invented to be eaten with idlees, a steamed dumpling made from a fermented batter of soaked urad dal mixed 1:1 with rice semolina (cream of rice cereal.) Since the idlee is porous and spongy, the chutney is designed to be soaked up by it, combining with and adding flavor to a most nutritious treat, the idlee. 

Copyright 2010 All Rights Reserved by Marilynn Stark

August, 2010

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Whey of Kefir Chick Pea Soup

This soup is zesty.  Supremely seasoned so as to complement the flavor lent the whey by the kefir, its nutritious value will surpass even its challenging taste.  Whey is replete with powerful proteins and is utilized most efficiently during athletic output.  The low Caloric content of this soup (192 Cal per cup) along with its low fat content make it preferable for anyone who is interested in a holistic taste and nutritional experience in fine cuisine.  The wholesome value of a food prepared totally at home with no preservatives is to be found in this soup.

To prepare the kefir whey simply strain about 6 cups of kefir through four layers of cheese cloth lining a strainer.  Collect the whey which comes through the strainer and cheese cloth and pour it into a separate container; let the remainder of the kefir, primarily curds once strained briefly like this, hang over a container by collecting the four corners of the cheese cloth together and attaching this cloth to the knob of a cabinet, or even suspend it from a ring stand.  This process will yield a delicate hung kefir cheese after a few hours or overnight.  Before collecting the kefir cheese from the cheese cloth, simply squeeze the remainder of the whey out of it by twisting it and applying pressure gently to the mass of curds within the cheese cloth as you do so. 

Depending on the thickness of the kefir which has been cultured, six cups of kefir should yield about 3 cups of whey and 2 cups of hung kefir cheese. 

Soak one half a cup of garbanzo beans overnight in water in preparation for this soup.  Then boil them separately before adding them to the soup for a softer bean in the finished soup.  The garbanzo beans will not soften adequately if only soaked overnight and then cooked into the soup for even up to two hours; boiling them in water for an hour after soaking them will prepare them for a softer consistency in the finished soup.   



  • 2 tsp ghee
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 Jalapeno pepper chopped fairly finely
  • 1 tsp ground ginger powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 cup frozen spinach
  • 1/2 cup soaked and boiled garbanzo beans (chick peas)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 3 cups of whey of kefir

Put the ghee in a kadai (wok) and gently heat it. Add in the cumin seeds and brown them. Next, add in the Jalapeno pepper. Let this mixture cook on low heat until it is well established. Now add the ground ginger and ground coriander at the same low heat level.  Once the spices are well incorporated into this base, add the frozen spinach and cook it until it is defrosted at medium low heat.  When the mixture becomes dried to the point where a brown pasty effect occurs, simply add in a tbsp of the kefir whey so as to keep it moist; be careful as this may happen quickly.  Cook on medium low heat a little longer like this until adding in the chick peas.  Now add the turmeric powder over the chick peas, and let it collect the heat which can be increased slightly.  Then stir the entire mixture as it cooks for a short while.  Once the chick peas have gathered in the ambient spicing, it is time to add the whey of kefir.  At this point, take the heat up to medium high level so that it boils vigorously.  Once such boiling has been achieved, lower the heat slightly, but keep the soup at a slightly bubbling boiling state -- the goal is to cook it well but not to boil away the liquid. Let this soup stew accordingly for several minutes.

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 See below here for a recipe for hung kefir cheese so made: Spiced Cooked Cheese of Turkish Curd.

 2008 by Marilynn Stark   All Rights Reserved.

Whey of Whole Milk Urad Dahl Soup

     This soup has a smoothness and a sweet-like flavor that work together to create an intriguing taste.  It will both satisfy the taste buds and render the excellent, top-level nutrition afforded by the whey protein.  Its vibrant color will add a special note to the visual appeal of the meal.   



  • 2 tsp ghee
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1/2 diced Jalapeno pepper
  • 1 tbsp urad dahl
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup chopped red cabbage
  • 3 cups of whey of whole milk

Place the ghee in a kadai and heat it up; add the cumin seeds and brown them. Add in the fennel seeds and let them cook. Next, add the Jalapeno pepper, and allow this foundation to simmer until it is well intermixed with its flavors. Add the urad dahl, and brown it slightly. Then add the turmeric, and let this spice become involved. Next, add the frozen peas. Cook the peas for a few minutes before adding the chopped red cabbage. This entire mixture should be allowed to cook to completion so that its loss of moisture as it cooks will finally require the addition of about 3 tbsp of the whey of whole milk in order to maintain its cooking status past its moment to become too dry for the bottom of the pan.  When it becomes too dry and thickens into a pasty effect on the pan, extend its cooking time at that point with the 3 tbsp of whey, mixing it in nicely.

Once the mixture has simmered through the addition of whey and would need more moisture once again, it is time to add the rest of the whey of whole milk. Bring the soup to a rolling boil and then tone it down to a lesser boiling status, allowing it to cook thoroughly.

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 2008 by Marilynn Stark   All Rights Reserved.

Spiced Cooked Cheese of Turkish Curd (Kefir)

                       [AmikShaaturuSkadadhi Vaasita Pakva] (Translation)*

A new recipe was conceived of and put into practice:



  • 1 cup of hung kefir cheese
  • 4 tsp ghee
  • 1/2 Jalapeno pepper chopped finely
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 4 tbsp raisins
  • 2 tbsp sunflower seeds
  • 2" section of zucchini chopped

In a saucepan heat the ghee and add the cumin seeds. Once the cumin is browned, add the chopped Jalapeno pepper. Cook this briefly; now add the kefir cheese. Once it has soaked up the free ghee in the pan, add in the zucchini. Let this mixture cook for a while. Then add the sunflower seeds and the raisins. Stir this mixture briefly before stirring in also the black pepper, turmeric and ground coriander.

This dish can be served with fresh chapati, mango pickle and some brown rice with yogurt on the side.

*dadhi (n.) = curd

turuSka (adj.) = Turkish

aamikShaa (f.) = cheese

pakva (adj.) = cooked

vaasita (adj.) = seasoned; spiced

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 2008 by Marilynn Stark   All Rights Reserved.

Hung Kefir Cheese Wheat Pilaf

Wheat combined with hung kefir cheese is a premium source of protein.  Try this dish for breakfast or tiffin with chapati and a sweet chutney of your choice.



  • 2 tsp ghee
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 5 tbsp of hung kefir cheese
  • 2 tbsp raisins
  • 4 tsp sunflower seeds
  • 2 tsp sugar or jaggery
  • 1/4 cup of Wheatena
  • 3/4 cup of water

Heat the ghee in a saucepan or kadai on medium heat. Once it is heated, add in the cumin seeds and brown them nicely. Then add the hung kefir cheese and cook it while stirring. Add the raisins and sunflower seeds before the hung kefir cheese is completely cooked. Once it has become totally stirred into a paste-like mixture, add the sugar or jaggery and briefly mix it in. Then comes the Wheatena which should be well stirred and warmed into the kefir cheese. Following that, simply add in the water and mix it before allowing it to cook into a bubbling state, turning the heat down to low for a more gentle and precise determination of when the pilaf is completely cooked and ready to remove from the heat. Once the moisture is all absorbed by the wheat, this dish is ready to be served. The 2 tsp sugar or jaggery will make a semi-sweet pilaf; if more sweetness is desired, add more sweetener to taste.

These ingredients constitute 2 servings of 1/2 cup each.

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 2008 by Marilynn Stark   All Rights Reserved.

Whey of Kefir Clove Soup

     This soup is filled with the pungent flavor of clove.  One has to try it and will disbelieve that a clove soup had not yet been popularized.  Please dare to try this soup.



  • 2 tsp ghee
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp ground clove
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper 
  • 1/2 to 1 Jalapeno pepper chopped
  • 1/2 sliced carrot
  • 1/2 cup of peas
  • 3 tbsp of hung kefir cheese
  • 3 cups whey of kefir

Place the ghee in a kadai and bring temperature of stove to medium high.  Once it is hot enough to burst a mustard seed, add in the sesame seeds and mustard seeds together.  Next add the Jalapeno pepper, turning down the heat to medium low.  Add the black pepper and clove to this mixture.  After some brief time, add in the frozen peas and hung kefir cheese, lowering the temperature down to low in deference to the clove powder.  Let the peas defrost and contribute their moisture to the mixture, watching as you stir it for any formation of paste on the bottom of the kadai.  Once that paste begins to collect, add in about 3 tbsp of whey so as to prevent overcooking the spice mixture.  Once the mixture has been suffused with the flavoring of the spices, the carrots can be added in.  Add more whey if deemed necessary if any sticking of the ingredients obstructs the harmony of the soup's formation.  Gently cook the carrots into this foundation, stirring and enjoying the aroma.  As the cooking proceeds, it is best to cover it and let the carrots cook well.

Once the vegetables are cooked, pour in the remainder of the whey of kefir.  Bring the soup to a boil as the temperature is increased to medium high.  Then lower the temperature yet enough to maintain a gentle boiling level.  After several minutes' cooking, this soup can be served.

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 2008 by Marilynn Stark   All Rights Reserved.


Zucchini-Raisin Vegetarian Soup

     This fine soup uses as its base the nutritious liquid obtained after boiling garbanzo beans.  If one cup of garbanzo beans are first soaked, drained, washed and then boiled in spring water, about two cups of the liquid which is present after the garbanzo beans are cooked to softness will be collected and used to make two servings of this soup.

     Zucchini-Raisin Vegetarian Soup was first created on a snowy, wintry day when a hot soup can be most consoling.  The raisins occur as gentle reminders of the kindness of sweetness; infused in the midst of nutritional excellence, the raisins carry also a harmony with the aromatically stout taste of fennel.  The consistency of this soup is slightly thick due to the gelatinous nature of the garbanzo bean cooking liquid used as the base.  In essence, this soup has a sweet character that is further held as if packaged in its absorbent chunks of zucchini. 



  • 2 tsp ghee
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp Jalapeno pepper diced
  • 1 tbsp cleaned urad dahl
  • 1/2 cup of chunked zucchini
  • 2 tbsp raisins
  • 14 - 16 oz of cooking fluid of boiled garbanzo beans 

     Place the ghee in a kadai and heat over medium low heat for about two or three minutes.  Add the fennel seeds and cumin seeds, heating them until they are browned.  Add the diced Jalapeno peppers, and heat this mixture until the spices are well established, being careful not to overcook the peppers; they should remain green in color.

     Now add the urad dahl to the spice mixture; stirring it, make sure that the dahl turns brown slowly.  Once it has turned brown, the heat can be lowered to low.  Add in the chunked zucchini, and stir it well.  Cover the dish and let it cook slowly for a few minutes -- about ten.  Add in the raisins and let them come to heat for a brief while before pouring in the cooking fluid of garbanzo beans.  At this time, increase the heat to medium high until a boiling action occurs.  When the soup begins to boil, turn down the heat to near low and let the boiling continue quietly for just a few more minutes.

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 2008 by Marilynn Stark   All Rights Reserved.


Homemade Semi-sweet Vanilla Yogurt

     This recipe will yield a yogurt which carries the flavor of vanilla, yet its sweetness is blended in without the pungent component of sugar.   


2 quarts milk

1/4 cup condensed milk

2 tbsp pure vanilla extract

1 packet gelatin (optional)

(To be revised. Please be patient,)

Virabhadra Mung Bean Soup

(Viirabhadra Mudga Suupa) (from the Sanskrit fully)

     This substantial soup will whet the taste for the great mung bean.  It is named after the mythical warrior, Virabhadra, whose name can be translated from the Sanskrit as "good warrior."  This particular soup is made for a Calorie-conscious eye; the Calories of its ingredients are included here in the ingredients.  Of course, the same soup can be made with the whey of whole milk.  

     If you have entered into the rich tradition of hatha yoga or are familiar with it, then you will remember the three Warrior Poses, Viirabhadraasana.  These are standing postures and reflect, indeed, the glory of mythical battle visually.  The superior nutrition of both the mung bean and the milk whey will build muscle when combined with exercise.    

     Make sure to clean and soak the mung beans overnight.   



  • 1 tsp ghee = 37 Cal
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 diced Jalapeno pepper
  • 1 slice ginger root diced and chopped (amounts to 1 Tbsp)
  • 1/2 cup of frozen peas = 53 Cal
  • 1/2 cup of soaked, cleaned mung beans* = 106 Cal
  • 3 cups of whey of skim milk = est 108 Cal


Est. per cup Cal value = 122 Cal

(Est. per cup Cal value with whey of whole milk = 194 Cal)


* There are 212 Cal in 1 cup of boiled mung beans (no salt)

Place 1 tsp of ghee in kadai and heat it; add in the sesame, mustard and cumin seeds.  Once the mustard seeds have popped, add in the diced Jalapeno pepper and diced ginger root.  Let this chaunk cook until the spices are well established; now add the frozen peas and let them defrost and take up the spicing. Then add the mung beans, and let these mung beans also gain the flavors that are there. Once the seasoning has thus been integrated, add the whey of milk. Let it come to a boil. The heat of the soup should be kept at a level to make the soup cook vigorously; this will amount to a gentle bubbling boil. Such a level of heat will within about 20 or 25 minutes cause the mung beans to break open. This soup will have a robust flavor and a nutritional value which is superior.

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Cinnamon-Spiced Paneer with Peas and Cashews

Enough cannot be said for the nutritious value and alluring taste of freshly made Indian cheese, paneer.  This dish is a favorite of mine at breakfast although it is appropriate for any meal.  You will find that it will stand by you in its power to nutrify and satisfy the appetite.  Since the paneer is itself naturally sweet and tender, its combination with cinnamon produces a special taste fundamentally -- that is how I derived the dish from basic ideation.  

Cinnamon is itself also a carrier of sweetness.  The cinnamon is therefore accessorized with the sweetness of jaggery and with the sweetness of condensed milk.  Imagine next the sweet peas adding their own inherent taste input.  To further add nutritive value, there is whey and there are cashews in the mix.  This dish goes well with pancakes in the morning; it can also balance a meal of brown rice with Vedic mixed vegetables at lunch or at dinnertime.  Rich in protein and full in flavor, Cinnamon-Spiced Paneer with Peas and Cashews may actually be something for which you had always longed but did not know it.



  • 2 tsp ghee 
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • freshly made paneer made from 1 quart of whole milk
  • 1/3 cup of whole milk whey
  • 1 tbsp jaggery
  • 1 tbsp condensed milk
  • 1/4 cup frozen peas
  • 1 tbsp slightly chopped cashews

Place the ghee in a small sauce pan over low heat.  Once it is heated, add 1/2 of the cinnamon required for the dish, that is, 1/2 tsp of cinnamon.  Let this mixture come to heat, and then add the sesame seeds.  Now add the chunks of paneer, and let them become coated and absorb the cinnamon-ghee mixture.  Each face of a chunk should absorb some of the cinnamon; rotate the chunks of paneer in order to invest them totally with cinnamon as they cook.

Dissolve the jaggery in the whole milk whey; you may have to whisk it if the whey is still cold from the refrigerator.  Add this mixture of whey and jaggery to the cooking paneer.  Shortly thereafter, and still on low heat, add the condensed milk and peas.  Stirring this lightly, each chunk of paneer can now be cut into two with the edge of a spatula so as to enter the next phase.  

Now add in the final 1/2 tsp of cinnamon, sprinkling it throughout the dish.  Next, add in the cashews, and then turn up the heat to medium low so as to take the forming dish to a mild boil.  Stirring it, let this dish cook until most of its moisture becomes invested in a pasty base.  A more gentle heat -- back to low or even to simmer -- can be used once the amount of moisture is greatly reduced from having been in its boiling state.   


This recipe makes two servings.

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These recipes here below will soon be elaborated and fully entered.


Red Dahl Cauliflower Whey Soup


2 tsp ghee

2 tsp black sesame seeds

1 tsp ground black pepper

2 tbsp red lentils (Masoor dahl)

3/4 cup of chunked cauliflower

3 cups of whole milk whey     


Cabbage- Red Potato Whey Soup

2 tsp ghee

2 tbsp garam masala

1 diced Jalapeno pepper

4 tbsp water

2 tbsp lentils

1 cup chopped green cabbage

1/2 cup whey of kefir

1 red potato (2-inch diameter) chunked

2 1/2 cups whey of kefir


2 tbsp garam masala

2 tsp ghee

1/4 cup spring water

1 cup peas

1/4 cup spring water

1/2 cup hung kefir cheese


2 tsp ghee

1 tsp chopped ginger

.75 Jalapeno pepper

 1 tsp mustard seed

1 tsp sesame seed

1/2 tsp fennel seed

4 tbsp lentils

1 cup whey

1/2 cup water

____ cup diced eggplant 


3 tbsp spring water

1 tsp garam masala

3 tbsp hung kefir cheese

3 slices Jalapeno pepper jack cheese (thin -- 1/4 ")

black pepper to taste



                                    Marilynn Stark


Copyright   1989-2010 by Marilynn Lea Stark.  All Rights Reserved.

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Date Site was last modified: 08/23/2010