Saturday, July 8, 2023

Arrowroot Powder


This is a real super food considering its long shelf life combined with nutritional values. It is its long shelf life without any extra preservatives that fascinated me the most. 

Arrow root powder, also known as arrowroot starch or arrowroot flour, is a popular thickening agent that is extracted from the roots of the arrowroot plant. It has been used for centuries in traditional medicine to treat a variety of ailments. 

We have a wrong notion that it is used only when your stomach is upset. No, it is not. It has variety of other uses as food as well as medicine. 

It is very much preferred for babies since it is gluten free and easily digestible. It is ideal for people of all ages because of its nutrients and easy digestive properties. 

Arrow root, belongs to Marantaceae family of plants, and has its origin in South America, but we Indians have been cultivating it and using it for generations. In India, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Assam, Bihar and Kerala States grow it abundantly. Usually it is planted during the summer months of May and June, and harvested in November or December. It goes by different regional names like Koova in Malayalam, Araruta in Hindi, Ararutkilangu in Tamil and Jukhur in Bengali. 

Shelf life: The most attractive factor of it is its long shelf life without adding any preservatives. It has a shelf life of about 3-4 years when stored in a cool, dry place. However, once opened and exposed to air, the powder can lose its potency over time. It is recommended to store opened arrowroot powder in an airtight container  to extend its shelf life.

Health benefits

1. Digestive aid: Arrowroot powder is a natural prebiotic, which means it helps to promote the growth of good bacteria in the gut. This can improve digestion and reduce symptoms of bloating, constipation, and other digestive issues.

2. Soothes sore throats: Arrowroot powder can be mixed with water to form a paste that can be applied to the throat to help soothe a sore throat. It is also a natural expectorant, which means it can help to clear mucus and phlegm from the respiratory tract.

3.Reduces inflammation: Some research suggests that arrowroot powder may have anti-inflammatory properties, which could help to reduce swelling and inflammation in the body.

4.Helps with weight loss: Arrowroot powder is low in calories and has a low glycemic index, making it a good choice for people trying to lose weight. It can help to regulate blood sugar levels and prevent spikes in insulin, which can contribute to weight gain.

5.A natural thickener, making it a useful ingredient in cooking and baking. It can be used as a substitute for flour in many baking recipes. It can give baked goods a lighter texture and can also help to bind ingredients together. 

6. A gluten-free alternative to wheat flour, making it a suitable ingredient for those with gluten intolerance or celiac disease. 

7. A good source of potassium, which is essential for maintaining healthy blood pressure and heart function. 

8. Has a low glycemic index, which makes it a good option for people with diabetes or those looking to manage their blood sugar levels.

9. Rich in antioxidants and can help to boost the immune system. 

10. A good source of dietary fiber, which can aid digestion and promote regular bowel movements.

11.May have antioxidant properties: Some studies have found that arrowroot powder may have antioxidant properties, which could help to protect cells from damage caused by free radicals.

 12.May improve skin health: Arrowroot powder has a smooth, silky texture that makes it a popular ingredient in skincare products. It is often used to help soothe and moisturize the skin, and may also have anti-aging effects.

Overall, arrowroot powder appears to be a safe and natural treatment for a variety of health issues. However, more research is needed to fully understand its medicinal properties.

DIY tips to use arrow root powder for skin acne, allergies without oil, which I have personally tried and found useful.

1.Arrowroot powder and aloe vera gel face mask: Mix arrowroot powder and aloe vera gel in equal parts, apply to the face, and leave on for 15-20 minutes before rinsing off with water.

2.Arrowroot powder and honey face mask: Mix arrowroot powder and honey in equal parts, apply to the face, and leave on for 15-20 minutes before rinsing off with water.

3.Arrowroot powder and turmeric face mask: Mix arrowroot powder, turmeric powder and milk to make a paste, apply to the face, and leave on for 15-20 minutes before rinsing off with water.

Note: It's always recommended to do a patch test before trying any of these methods to check for any allergies or sensitivities.

Sources: Open AI Chat Gpt and Dall-e

            : Internet

            : Personal consultation 

           : My own experience

Arrowroot Powder Recipes

Arrowroot powder

Arrow root Powder is a versatile and gluten-free ingredient that can be used in various recipes to form a  thick and smooth consistency.

 Here are some yummy and varied recipe suggestions for you.

1. Smoothies 


Roast  1⁄2 a cup of almonds in a pan for a few seconds.

Add 1tb spoon of white poppy seeds and roast for a few more second, remove the above from the pan and keep aside.

Then roast a cup of lotus seeds/ makhana for 1-2 minutes and keep it aside.  Roast 6 dry dates for few seconds. Let the ingredients cool completely .

Deseed the dates and chop them into small pieces.

Put all the ingredients into a blender along with sugar candy and or Marayoor Jaggery (optional) & blend together. Blend thoroughly & store in an air tight jar.

Add 1 tb of  the above powder along with 1 tb. spoon of arrowroot powder to a  glass of cold or warm milk. Stir well. Boil some water in a pan and add the above mix slowly stirring well to avoid forming lumps. Heat more about 1 to 2 minutes briskly stirring. Put off the flame. When cool, pour  this to glass, garnish with nuts.

Note: The type of seeds to be added is your choice. It needn't be almond, poppy or lotus seeds.

So also you can add Ragi powder, Banana to make it more yummy and healthy.

A glass of smoothy can serve as your healthy breakfast/dinner!

2.Simple Arrowroot Pudding


1/4 cup arrowroot powder

2 cups coconut milk (or any other milk of your choice)

1/4 cup maple syrup or honey

1 tsp vanilla extract

Pinch of salt


In a saucepan, whisk together the arrowroot powder and coconut milk until smooth. Add the maple syrup (or honey) and salt. Heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly until it thickens. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Pour the pudding into serving dishes and chill in the refrigerator until set.

3. Strawberry Arrowroot Pudding


1 cup strawberries (fresh or frozen)

2 cups coconut milk (or any other plant-based milk)

1/4 cup arrowroot powder

1/4 cup maple syrup or honey

1 tsp vanilla extract


In a blender, puree the strawberries until smooth.

In a saucepan, whisk together coconut milk, arrowroot powder, maple syrup (or honey), and vanilla extract.

Heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly until it thickens.

Once thickened, remove from heat and let it cool for a few minutes.

Mix in the strawberry puree and stir well.

Pour the mixture into a bowl and  chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before serving.

Note: Instead of Strawberry you can add any berri of your choice say, blackberry, blueberry or raspberry.

4.Arrowroot and Vegetable Stir-Fry


2 cups mixed vegetables (broccoli, bell peppers, carrots, snap peas, etc.)

2 tbsp soy sauce or tamarind (gluten-free soy sauce)

1 tbsp rice vinegar

1 tbsp arrowroot powder

1 tbsp water

2 cloves garlic (minced)

1-inch piece of ginger (grated)

1 tbsp cooking oil

Cooked rice or noodles for serving


In a small bowl, mix soy sauce, rice vinegar, arrowroot powder, and water to create a smooth sauce. Set aside.

Heat cooking oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat.

Add minced garlic and grated ginger, stirring for about 1 minute until fragrant.

Add the mixed vegetables to the skillet and stir-fry for 3-4 minutes until they are tender-crisp. Pour the sauce over the vegetables and stir continuously until the sauce thickens and coats the vegetables evenly.  Serve the stir-fry over cooked rice or noodles.

5. Arrowroot Gravy


2 cups vegetable or chicken broth

2 tbsp arrowroot powder

2 tbsp water

2 tbsp butter or oil

Salt and pepper to taste


In a small bowl, mix the arrowroot powder and water to form a slurry. In a saucepan, melt the butter (or heat the oil) over medium heat. Add the broth and bring it to a simmer. Stir in the arrowroot slurry and continue stirring until the gravy thickens. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve over roasted meats, mashed potatoes, or vegetables.

6. Arrowroot Berry Crisp


4 cups mixed berries (such as blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries)

1/4 cup maple syrup or honey

1 tbsp arrowroot powder

1 cup oats (gluten-free if desired)

1/2 cup almond flour

1/4 cup coconut oil (or butter), melted

1/4 cup chopped nuts (e.g., almonds, walnuts)


 Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). In a bowl, mix the berries, maple syrup (or honey), and arrowroot powder. Transfer the berry mixture to a baking dish. In another bowl, combine oats, almond flour, melted coconut oil (or butter), and chopped nuts. Sprinkle this mixture evenly over the berries. Bake for about 25-30 minutes or until the topping is golden and the berries are bubbling.

7. Arrowroot Chocolate Chip Cookies


1 cup arrowroot powder

1/2 cup almond flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup coconut oil (melted)

1/2 cup coconut sugar or brown sugar

1 large egg

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup chocolate chips (dairy-free for a vegan option)


Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a bowl, whisk together arrowroot powder, almond flour, baking soda, and salt.

In a separate bowl, beat together melted coconut oil and coconut sugar until smooth.

Add the egg and vanilla extract to the wet mixture and mix well.

Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture and mix until a dough forms.

Fold in the chocolate chips until evenly distributed throughout the dough.

Scoop tablespoon-sized portions of the dough onto the prepared baking sheet, leaving space between each cookie.

Flatten the cookie dough slightly with the back of a spoon.

Bake in the preheated oven for 10-12 minutes or until the edges turn golden brown.

Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

8.Arrowroot Coconut Cookies


1 cup arrowroot powder

1/2 cup shredded coconut

1/4 cup coconut oil (or butter), melted

1/4 cup maple syrup or honey

1 tsp vanilla extract

Pinch of salt


Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). In a bowl, mix the arrowroot powder and shredded coconut. In another bowl, whisk together the melted coconut oil, maple syrup (or honey), vanilla extract, and salt. Combine the wet and dry ingredients until a dough forms. Roll the dough into small balls and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Flatten the balls with a fork. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the cookies are lightly golden around the edges.

Enjoy these delicious and diverse recipes featuring arrowroot powder!

9. Crispy Arrowroot Chicken Strips


1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cut into strips)

1/2 cup arrowroot powder

2 eggs (beaten)

1 cup gluten-free bread crumbs or crushed cornflakes

1 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Salt and pepper to taste

Cooking oil (for frying)


Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).

In a shallow dish, mix arrowroot powder, paprika, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

Dip each chicken strip into the arrowroot mixture, shaking off any excess.

Next, dip the chicken strip into the beaten eggs, allowing any excess to drip off.

Coat the chicken strip with gluten-free bread crumbs or crushed cornflakes, pressing gently to adhere.

Heat cooking oil in a large skillet over medium heat.

Fry the chicken strips until they are golden brown and crispy on both sides.

Transfer the chicken strips to a baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for an additional 10-15 minutes until fully cooked through.

10.Crispy Arrowroot-Coated Chicken


1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cut into strips)

1/2 cup arrowroot powder

1 tsp paprika

Salt and pepper to taste

2 eggs (beaten)

Oil for frying


Mix the arrowroot powder, paprika, salt, and pepper in a shallow dish. Dip each chicken strip into the beaten eggs, then coat them with the arrowroot mixture. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Fry the coated chicken strips until they are crispy and golden brown. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce.

Enjoy Happy as well as Healthy Cooking please!

Friday, July 7, 2023



These are aromatic flower buds derived from the clove tree (Syzygium aromaticum), native to the Maluku Islands in Indonesia. Cloves have been used for thousands of years and were highly valued in ancient civilizations like the Roman Empire and ancient China. They were a precious commodity during the spice trade era, with European powers exploring and colonizing various regions in search of these valuable spices. They have a long history of use in various cultures for their culinary, medicinal, and aromatic properties. Cloves have a long history of use in India too. It is an essential ingredient in Indian cuisine too.

Thalanad Cloves:

Thalanad is a tiny village in Kottayam district of Kerala, India. The cloves grown there are of super quality. Efforts to secure GI tag for this is going in full swing and is expected to have GI tagging shortly. Proposals have already been submitted by Kerala Agricultural University and is waiting for State’s administrative sanction. 

Medical Uses:

Cloves contain several bioactive compounds, including eugenol, which gives them their distinct flavour and aroma. Eugenol possesses antimicrobial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties.

In traditional medicine, cloves have been used to alleviate toothaches, reduce inflammation, aid digestion, and relieve respiratory conditions.

Clove oil, derived from cloves, is used in some dental procedures and products for its analgesic and antiseptic properties.

Cloves are believed to have digestive properties and are used to alleviate various digestive issues like bloating, indigestion, and flatulence.

They are also used for their analgesic properties and are believed to provide relief from toothaches and gum pain.

In some Indian households, clove-infused water or tea is consumed to soothe respiratory problems and alleviate coughs and colds.

In some regions, cloves are included in traditional medicine practices and home remedies passed down through generations. It's worth noting that while cloves offer potential health benefits, they should be consumed in moderation as part of a balanced diet. Additionally, individuals with specific health conditions or who are taking certain medications should consult with a healthcare professional before using cloves for medicinal purposes.

Culinary Uses:

Cloves are widely used as a spice and flavouring agent in cooking, particularly in Asian, Middle Eastern, and Indian cuisines. 

They add a warm, aromatic, and slightly sweet flavour to both sweet and savoury dishes.

Cloves are commonly used in baking, mulled beverages, spice blends (such as garam masala), and pickling.

They are commonly used in spice blends such as garam masala, which is a mixture of ground spices used as a base in many Indian dishes.

Cloves are used in both vegetarian and non-vegetarian recipes, including curries, rice dishes, pickles, chutneys, and biryanis. 

They are often added to dishes with rich gravies or sauces, as they contribute a warm and spicy flavour.

Religious and Cultural Significance:

Cloves hold religious and cultural significance in India.

They are often used in religious ceremonies, festivals, and rituals.

Sources: Open AI Chat Gpt and Dall-e

            : Internet

            : Personal consultation 

            : My own experience

Thursday, July 6, 2023

Navara Rice

This indigenous rice variety NAVARA (Oryza sativa) got international recognition after it had earned the Geographical Indication Tag (GI Tag) in 2007.

Navara  rice, also called " rice that cures" is a  low yield crop, cultivated in very specific Areas in India. It is primarily grown in the high ranges of Wayanad, in Kerala, located in the southwestern region of India, where the climate and soil conditions are ideal for cultivating this unique as well as expensive variant of rice. It is also grown in some other regions of India, such as Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, albeit on a smaller scale. However, Kerala remains the main producer and supplier of this unique rice variety.

In Kerala, Navara rice is typically grown in paddy fields using traditional agricultural practices. The rice requires specific conditions, such as a warm and humid climate with abundant rainfall. The fertile soil of the region, enriched with organic matter, contributes to the quality of the rice.

Navara rice has a long history in Ayurveda, the traditional system of medicine in India. It is considered a medicinal rice and is used in various Ayurvedic treatments and therapies. The rice is known for its nutritional and therapeutic properties and is believed to have rejuvenating effects on the body.

Picture from IBEF, India site.

Health benefits

Some of the potential benefits include:

Rich in antioxidants: It is rich in antioxidants, which can help protect the body against damage from free radicals.

Good for the skin: It is believed to be good for the skin, as it can help to nourish and hydrate the skin.

May help to reduce inflammation: It may help to reduce inflammation in the body, which can help to reduce the risk of various diseases.

May help to improve digestion: It may help to improve digestion and may be beneficial for people with digestive issues.

May be beneficial for people with diabetes: It may be beneficial for people with diabetes, as it has a low glycemic index, which means it may help to regulate blood sugar level.

Sources: Open AI Chat Gpt 

            : IBEF, and other sites  

            : Personal consultation 

            : My own experience

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Black Pepper


Black pepper, scientifically known as Piper nigrum, is one of the most widely used spices in the world. It has a long and fascinating history, with various medicinal and culinary uses. 

Black pepper has been cultivated for thousands of years and has played a significant role in human civilization. It originated in India and was traded along ancient spice routes, making it highly valuable and sought after. Over 2000 years ago, the Romans who loved this spice bought it from Southern India and they paid for it in gold. Hence the name Black Gold. Pepper was even used as currency and has been mentioned in ancient texts like the Bible! 

In India, black pepper is primarily found in the southern states of Kerala, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu. These regions have a tropical climate, which is favorable for the cultivation of black pepper. Kerala, in particular, is renowned for its high-quality black pepper production. The Malabar region of Kerala is famous for Malabar pepper, which is considered one of the finest varieties of black pepper in the world. The Western Ghats mountain range in India is known to be the natural habitat of black pepper plants. The pepper vines require a warm and humid environment with well-drained soil to thrive.

Medicinal Uses of Black Pepper: 

Black pepper has been traditionally used in various medicinal practices across different cultures. It contains a compound called piperine, which gives it its characteristic flavor and offers potential health benefits. Some medicinal uses of black pepper include:

Improving digestion and stimulating appetite

Enhancing nutrient absorption

Relieving respiratory congestion and cough

Acting as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent

Supporting weight loss efforts

Food Uses of Black Pepper

Black pepper is a versatile spice used in numerous culinary applications worldwide. It adds a distinctive flavor and aroma to dishes, ranging from savory to sweet. Some common food uses of black pepper include:

Seasoning meat, poultry, and seafood

Adding flavor to soups, stews, and sauces

Enhancing the taste of vegetables and salads

Incorporating into marinades and rubs

Sprinkling on fruits, desserts, and beverages for a unique twist

Rasam :Here is a very famous  recipe for South Indian Rasam, a flavorful and tangy soup-like dish, with the addition of pepper for that extra kick. It has good digestive properties and hence is a must in Kerala banquet (Sadya,) for traditional festivals. 


1 medium-sized tomato, chopped

1 small lemon-sized ball of tamarind, soaked in water

2 tablespoons of ghee or oil

1 teaspoon of mustard seeds

1 teaspoon of cumin seeds

1 teaspoon of black peppercorns

1 teaspoon of turmeric powder

1 teaspoon of Rasam powder (a South Indian spice blend)

A pinch of Asafoetida (hing)

A few curry leaves

Salt to taste

Chopped coriander leaves for garnish

For the spice paste:

2 teaspoons of black peppercorns

2 teaspoons of cumin seeds

2 cloves of garlic

1-inch piece of ginger, peeled


In a blender, grind the ingredients for the spice paste (peppercorns, cumin seeds, garlic, and ginger) into a fine paste by adding a little water. Set aside.

Extract the tamarind juice from the soaked tamarind by squeezing it with your hands and straining the juice into a bowl. Set aside.

Heat ghee or oil in a pan over medium heat. Add mustard seeds and let them splutter. Then, add cumin seeds, black peppercorns, and curry leaves. Sauté for a minute until the spices release their aroma.

Add the chopped tomatoes and cook until they turn mushy.

Now, add the turmeric powder, Rasam powder, and Asafoetida. Stir well and cook for a minute.

Add the tamarind juice, spice paste, and salt to the pan. Mix everything together and let the Rasam simmer on low heat for about 10-15 minutes, allowing the flavors to blend.

Once the Rasam has been cooked, turn off the heat. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves.

Rasam powder is readily available in Supermarkets, but still, in case anybody wants to make it on one's own, here is, how to.  


2 tablespoons coriander seeds

1 tablespoon cumin seeds

1 tablespoon black peppercorns

1 tablespoon red chili flakes (adjust according to your spice preference)

1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds

1 teaspoon mustard seeds

10-12 curry leaves

1 teaspoon turmeric powder


Heat a dry pan or skillet over medium heat.

Add coriander seeds, cumin seeds, black peppercorns, red chili flakes, fenugreek seeds, and mustard seeds to the pan.

Dry roast the spices in the pan, stirring constantly, until they turn fragrant and lightly browned. This usually takes 2-3 minutes. Be careful not to burn them.

Add the curry leaves to the pan and roast for an additional minute.

Remove the pan from heat and let the roasted spices cool down to room temperature.

Once the spices are cooled, transfer them to a spice grinder or blender.

Add turmeric powder to the grinder or blender.

Grind the spices into a fine powder. You can adjust the coarseness according to your preference.

Once ground, transfer the Rasam powder to an airtight container or jar.

Your homemade Rasam powder is ready to use! Store it in a cool, dry place and it should last for several months. Remember to adjust the quantity of Rasam powder according to your taste preferences when preparing rasam.

Note: This is a basic recipe for Rasam powder. You can customize it by adding or omitting spices based on your preference. Some variations may include adding dry roasted fenugreek seeds or dry ginger powder. Experiment and adjust the recipe to suit your taste.


Sources: Open AI Chat Gpt and Dall-e

            : Internet

            : Personal consultation 

            : My own experience



Cardamom is a spice that originates from the seeds of plants in the Elettaria and Amomum genera, which are part of the ginger family (Zingiberaceae). It is native to the Indian subcontinent and has been used for centuries in various culinary and medicinal applications. Here's an overview of its origin, uses, and health benefits:

1. Origin:

Cardamom is native to the Indian subcontinent, particularly in India, Bhutan, and Nepal.

It is also grown in other countries, including Guatemala, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, and several other tropical regions.

2. Uses:

Culinary Uses: Cardamom is a versatile spice with a unique flavor and aroma. It is used in various culinary applications, including:

Flavoring: It is commonly used as a spice to flavor both sweet and savory dishes, including curries, rice dishes, soups, and stews.

Baking: Cardamom is a popular addition to baked goods such as cakes, cookies, and bread, particularly in Scandinavian and Middle Eastern cuisines.

Beverages: It is a key ingredient in chai tea and is used to flavor coffee in some regions.

Desserts: Cardamom is used to enhance the flavor of desserts like ice cream, puddings, and fruit dishes.

Medicinal Uses: Cardamom has been used in traditional medicine for its potential health benefits, including aiding digestion and treating various ailments. It is used in Ayurvedic and traditional Chinese medicine practices.

3. Health Benefits:

Digestive Aid: Cardamom is known to help with digestive issues, including indigestion, gas, and bloating. It can help soothe the stomach and improve overall digestion.

Anti-Inflammatory: Cardamom contains compounds with anti-inflammatory properties, which may help reduce inflammation in the body.

Antioxidant Properties: It is rich in antioxidants, which can help protect cells from damage caused by free radicals and may contribute to overall health.

Oral Health: Chewing cardamom seeds or using cardamom-flavored mouth fresheners is a traditional practice in many cultures. It is believed to help freshen breath and promote oral health.

Respiratory Health: Some traditional medicine systems use cardamom to relieve symptoms of respiratory conditions like coughs and asthma.

Diuretic: It may have mild diuretic properties, which can help in increasing urine production and potentially aid in detoxification.

Weight Management: Some studies suggest that cardamom may help with weight management by improving metabolism and reducing appetite.

It's important to note that while cardamom offers potential health benefits, it should be used in moderation, especially in concentrated forms like essential oil, as excessive consumption may lead to adverse effects. As with any spice or herbal remedy, it's a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional before using cardamom for medicinal purposes, especially if you have any underlying health conditions or are taking medications


Monday, July 3, 2023


Indumathi Hair Oil can easily be defined as  a fusion of fresh cold pressed coconut oil with over 20 handpicked natural leaves, meticulously curated from our own lush garden, except some components like Gooseberry, Karimjeerakam- (Kaala Jeera or Shah Jeera in Hindi, Black Cumin/ Black Caraway) which are procured from reliable sources. I have inherited this from my late Mother-in-Law who used to make this for our family.

It will revitalize hair from root to tip. So also, it may help to reduce hair fall since it prevents dandruff forming on crest. Better to leave for 15-30 minutes as your time permits. It will surely help in good sleep also. No harm in applying on body too.