This recipe was inspired by a Mint Thogayal recipe by one of my blogger friends, Rasi.  This is a simple side dish that will complement any meal.

First, let’s make my thogayal inspired creation.  I love fresh mint and buy it quite often for use in both savory and sweet dishes.  Mint is very strong so usually only a little is needed and mint is sold in rather large bunches.  I usually end up with a bunch of extra mint, that I leave to air dry, rather than letting it get slimy & bad in the refrigerator.  I use this dried mint, when making tea.  I always have a lot of this dried mint stored in my pantry.

Spicy Mint Puree

3/4 cup dried mint
1 teaspoon oil
4 dried red chiles
2 tablespoons urad dal (ivory lentil)
1 pinch asoefetida

4 peppercorns
1/4 teaspoon tamarind concentrate
1/4 cup water
salt, to taste

In a skillet, heat oil.  Add chiles, urad dal, peppercorns and asoefetida.  Cook until the urad dal turns golden brown.  Turn off heat and cool.

Combine in a food processor with mint, water, tamarind and salt.

Grind to a paste.

Mint Vegetable Quinoa


2 cups quinoa
3 cups water
mint puree recipe (above)
1 cup frozen vegetables
salt, to taste
Combine all ingredients, except the frozen vegetables, in a saucepan and bring to a boil.  Cover and reduce to a simmer.  Cook for 15 minutes.  Add your favorite frozen vegetable medley and cook for another 5 minutes.  Taste and adjust salt, if necessary.

…a delicious, healthy side dish

I paired it with some fried fish and had a delicious dinner, with limited effort.  A quick seasoning blend that I always have on hand on the fish and coated with just rice flour, a complete meal was done in 30 minutes…

A Healthy Dinner

Rachel Ray, knock your heart out, I too can do a 30-minute meal!…

of course, the mint puree was done the night before 🙂

Chef Mireille