Diwali Hangover!


Growing up, Diwali wasn’t my favorite festival. Diwali meant waking up super early, getting dressed in my finest silks, making the perfect rangoli followed by a crazy heavy breakfast! And during the rangoli-making my brother would be firecracker-ing that would always destroy my almost perfect terrible rangoli! Diwali mornings were usually spent crying over the spoilt rangoli, my mother screaming at the top of her voice to wake us up on time (before sunrise), fighting with my older brother and getting scolded by our parents in the end while stuffing our grumpy faces with the goodies…

This year Diwali was considerably quiet and peaceful with lamps, diyas, no rangoli (because I suck at making one #sorryMa&Mil), sweets, snacks (Diwali Faraal) and a grand lunch with our extended family. For the past two weeks we have been stuffing ourselves with super tasty home, mom and aunt made goodies so it was time to take a break from the deep fried stuff. Hence, my family self invited the crazy baker inside me to the rescue. So I present to you some healthy almost oil free Quinoa Chicken and black bean casserole and a fresh batch of lemon coconut cupcakes!




Quinoa Chicken Casserole


  •  Uncooked Quinoa – 1½ Cups
  •  Cooked black beans – 1 1/2 Cups (drained)
  •  Salsa – 1 1/2 Cups
  •  Chicken/ Vegetable broth – 1½ Cups (½ cup more if needed)
  •  Salt – To Taste
  • Garlic – 1 to 2 cloves (Minced)
  • Green Chillies – 3 to 4 (Minced) – optional
  • Shredded cheese – 1½ cups (Divided)
  • Butter – 1 Tbs
  • Jalapeño – 1 (Minced)
  • Onion – 1 Medium (Sliced)
  • Bell Peppers – 2 (Sliced)
  • Boneless skinless chicken breasts  – 3 (cut into small pieces)
  • Marinade – 1 Tsp each (cumin powder, red chilli powder, garam masala, black pepper powder, salt and vegetable/ sunflower oil)



  1. Marinade the chicken in the spice mix and set aside
  2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F
  3. In a large bowl mix the quinoa, black beans, salsa, chicken broth, salt, garlic, green chillies and ½ cup of the shredded cheese
  4. Transfer the mixture to a well-greased casserole dish (9×13 approx.). Bake for 30 minutes
  5. Simultaneously heat the butter in a large skillet. Add the jalapeño, onion and peppers. Saute until golden brown or slightly cooked and crispy (Sprinkle some salt and pepper if needed). Remove from heat and set aside
  6. Remove the quinoa mixture from the oven after 30 minutes. Stir it really well and add the raw chicken. Stir the chicken into the mixture to get the chicken covered by the mixture and bake for another 30 minutes (Add chicken broth if you feel the mixture is a little dry)
  7. When the quinoa is cooked add the pepper-onion mixture and leftover cheese. Bake for another 5-10 minutes or until the cheese melts to your liking


Original recipe credit – http://pinchofyum.com/







Lemon Coconut Cupcakes


  • Vegetable oil/ Melted butter – 1/2 Cup
  • White granulated sugar – 2/3 Cup
  • Salt – 1/2 Tsp
  • Vanilla extract – 2 Tsp
  • Eggs – 6 large
  • Milk – 2 Tbs
  • Lemon Zest – 2 Tbs
  • Lemon Juice – 2 Tbs
  • Coconut Flour – 1/2 Cup
  • Baking powder – 1 Tsp



  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a muffin pan with cupcake liners of your choice
  2. Mix the oil, sugar, salt, vanilla, milk and eggs. (Beat the eggs separately in a bowl first and then add it to this mixture)
  3. Sift coconut flour and baking powder in a separate bowl and then add it to the wet ingredients, stir well for a lump free batter. Add lemon zest and lemon juice and mix well
  4. Fill the cupcake liners evenly (about 3/4 full)
  5. Bake the cupcakes in the oven for about 18-20 min, cook until a tester toothpick comes out clean
  6. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and let them cool for about 5 min and then turn them over on a cooling rack


Hope ya’ll have recovered from the Diwali hangover too! 🙂



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