Monday, April 18, 2011

Parama 'Quinoa' , Sweet quinoa with lentils and milk

Hi Everyone!! I am back again with the Blogging Marathon # 4.
It was fun doing it the last two times and I couldn't miss doing it again this time!
Blogging Marathon is a creation of Srivalli of Spicing your Life Blog. I really appreciate the patience and effort she puts in all she does and has done for her blogs and the help she has done with starting this Blogging Marathon!!.. Thanks Srivalli!! :)

Disclaimer: Everything written on Diabetes is written by me and how I see it in my everyday life. Its written in lay man's language. Nothing is by the book! Its my knowledge of being a diabetic and management. Any mistakes or wrong perception, please let me know and I will correct myself! :)

So coming to my theme, this time around I decided to blog about Diabetes Diet Management.
Diabetes is very common in Indians as well as Americans. We all come from a line of high carbohydrates  and sugars eating ancestors and forefathers. Don't you think so??...
So what are carbs or carbohydrates? This is the main culprit in causing or the underlying cause of Diabetes. Many people don't know or think that sugar is the cause, but sugar is also a form of a carbohydrate.
Whatever we eat is broken down into sugars and carbohydrates. That's where checking of the nutrition label becomes important. That is to see what are we eating? how many carbs and how many sugars. This is an important part to diet management when you are a diabetic!
An enzyme called insulin is required in the body, its produced by your pancreas, a small organ next to your liver. Insulin acts or breaks down these sugars or carbs to be absorbed by your body. The problem comes when you body isn't producing enough insulin to break down all the carbs that are entering into your body. That's when you become a "DIABETIC".
This can be managed by taking medications, taking insulin externally, by diet management and exercises.
Increasing the metabolic rate of your body is important for the medication and insulin to act effectively. This can only be done by exercise!!
...I know I know, Not everyone has the time to exercise because of many other aversions and distractions (I fall into this category), that's when diet management becomes very important!!
Its more about how much you eat and what you eat!! Avoiding carbs and sugars as much as possible.
So when high Carbs are eliminated from your diet, what left??
Fats, Proteins and freebies!!
Carbs are important, you cannot eliminate them all together, well you can if you are on a carb-free diet (like South Beach Diet), but otherwise, eating some like about 40 carbs per lunch or dinner is a minimal good start.
Fats should be taken in minimal amounts.
Proteins are, you know, meats, lentils, whole grains like Quinoa etc.,.
Freebies are all veggies and fruit. Few nuts also fall into this category.
That's why reading the nutrition label is that very important!!

So with all this in mind, here is a sweet I made for Ugadi, Parama 'Quinoa' just like Paramaannam, just with out the rice, using quinoa instead.
Quinoa is not a carb-free grain. Not any lentils or grains are carb-free. They do contain a good amount of carbs but on the other hand are very rich in proteins. That's where this grain is important to us!!
The main quality of proteins is to make you feel full when you eat only little of it. This is useful to us in dieting right!! :)
For that reason eating quinoa or protein rich foods is important for diabetics.
A third of a cup of quinoa has about 34g of carbs. And a third of a cup of quinoa makes a lot too. So eating a 1/3 cup of quinoa, keeps you under 40g of required carbs and gives a protein rich meal! So its good for you. :)
To make this sweet I used few split peas or channa daal and used splenda (artificial sweetener) for sweetening.


1 cup cooked quinoa
1 tbsp cooked channa daal, split peas, chanaga pappu ( pesar pappu can also be used instead)
1/4 cup of milk ( use more if needed)
Splenda for sweetening ( I use 3 packets)
pinch of cardamom, elaichi powder
1 tbsp cashews and raisins, sauteed in couple of drop of ghee

Method to cook Quinoa:

Wash Quinoa in water 3-4 times. Drain all the water and keep aside for 10 min.
Bring about 1 1/4 cup of water to a rapid boil.
Add the drained Quinoa. Set the flame low, cover and let cook until all the water is absorbed. Remove from heat and fluff. Keep covered for another 10 minutes.
This way you get soft separated quinoa.

Method for parama quinoa:

Cook Quinoa and Changa pappu separately.
Bring milk to a boil and add the quinoa and chanaga pappu.
Add a pinch of cardamom powder.
Add the sauteed cashews and raisins.
I also added a pinch of food color.
For topping, I added few grated coconut pieces and kesar or saffron flowers.
Serve warm. Enjoy after giving Naivedyam to GOD!!!! :)))

So tho you made a whole cup of Quinoa, don't eat the whole cup of cooken quinoa, eat little and save the rest :)

Check out my Blogging Marathoners doing Group 3 BM#4 along with me

Diabetes Diet/Management: Kamalika, Smitha, Suma
Kid Friendly Recipes: Anusha, Cool Lassi(e)
Seven Days of Soup: Priya Suresh
Seven Days of Indian Bread: Jayasree, Pavani
Seven Days of Cakes:  Priya Vasu
Seven Days of Preserves: Gayathri Kumar, Vaishali
30 Minutes Meals: Priya Mahadevan, Srivalli

Sending this to WWC-Quinoa for Dinner @ Oh Taste n See


  1. This Quinoa pudding looks fabulous! I am digging it and Smitha, happy to be doing BM with you. :)

  2. thats an awesome recipe..looks so delicious..!!

  3. Good one Smitha. I am a great fan of quinoa and almost substitute for rice 4-5 days a week.
    From whatever little I know, using artificial sweeteners is not too good because they have something called aspartame which is thought to be carcinogenic.So please be sure to check for the ingredients before you use. Maybe Agave nectar to some extent is better or more natural sources need to be explored.

  4. Wow,Smitha wonderful healthy Pudding.Looks so inviting...

  5. Loved d name...'parama' quinoa...its quite funny too at the same time..:)
    looks really yumm

  6. Yum! The dessert looks simply awesome! I'd grab a spoon and have some!

  7. @ Harini,
    thanks for ur comment! To make it clear -->

    Right now There are quite a few types of artifivial sweeteners. Aspartame is not good, its comes in a pink packet and sold in brands like Equal. I never that, tho its found in chewing gums regularly.
    Splenda is not aspartame, its a derivative of sugar, i think mainly sucralose and/or fructose. These can be used instead of sugar very safely, since they are fruit sugars. Splenda can be also used in baking tho agave nectare is a very good choice :))

  8. Beautiful, healthy and delicious- what more could you ask for ?:) A great dish..
    Loved the name too and the presentation is GORGEOUS!
    US Masala

  9. When I saw the title, I was like what is parama quinoa and then realised that you have replaced rice with quinoa in paramannam after giving it a thought. Chala bagundhi chodadaniki.
    Kotha doctorlakanna patha patientsku ekkuva information telisuntundi kadha, as one of the sayings go? When you or anyone in the familiy is diabetic (or any chronic condition for that matter), you change your life style and automatically push yourself to learn more about the disease.
    Now a days I too started replacing rice with quinoa for my meals. It goes in all kind of khichdis, bisibelebhath and sweet dishes. A small quantity is enough to satiate the hunger as you mentioned. And yeap, splenda is not aspartame and that's what we use too.

  10. nice post smitha, enjoyed reading it !

  11. Quinoa is a very healthy food and this pudding looks so perfect...

  12. Liked your adaptation of quinoa to an Indian sweet..

  13. Smitha, rice cannot be replaced with ragi as quinoa and cracked wheat. You can't cook the whole grains but you can cook many dishes with ragi grain & flour.
    And regarding the splenda sweetener. I have noticed that the kheers turn somewhat bitter when the splenda is added while cooking. I therefore usually add it while serving.

  14. delicious looking dessert.wonderful pictures.

  15. Omg, thats sooo wonderful and very creative sweet quinoa, cant wait to try..simply inviting!

  16. this is delicious way to eat quiona looks fabulous

  17. Very interesting dish Smitha..and I find the conversations very productive..way to go..

  18. Parama quinoa is a very creative name and the dish looks amazing. I couldn't stop smiling after reading Suma's comment: Kotha doctorlakanna patha patientsku ekkuva information telisuntundi kadha. I remember my ammamma saying that when we were little. Nice doing the marathon with you Smitha.

  19. thanks Srivalli, Thanks Pavani! :) I toatlly understand what Suma means...thats lay man to me! :)

  20. Very Tempting Pudding Smitha,luks so delicious...

  21. Wow Smitha! Extremely useful post...

  22. Mouthwatering pudding. Its new to me. Love it.

    Hamsamalini Chandrasekaran,

  23. The dessert look scrumptious and lovely! You could send it to the WWC Quinoa event being hosted on Denise blog;

  24. Delicious and healthy pudding Smitha!!!!!Thanks for that info on diabetics!!!!

  25. Smitha, this is my second comment on this post - wanted to tell you that I just got to read about you - You are awesome and I look forward to all you visits to my blog and am happy too to see you on FB - I am amazed constantly at the friendships and sisterhoods that develop even without physical presence.. keep rocking gal :) Love ya!

  26. That was a nice one on diabetes and a great recipe towards healthy living! Loved your bowl :)

  27. Quinoa sweet looks good! I also have those gold coated flowers

  28. those golden flowers are so pretty well presented!

  29. This quinoa recipe of yours definitely shouts delicious. I'm looking forward to trying this recipe this weekend. I'm sure my family will love it. Thank you so much for sharing!


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