My Vegetarian Roots

The Story

A girl from India, left everything behind to be with her prince charming and came to America! The fairytale was not so fairytale-like until I experienced the real struggle of starting my whole life all over from scratch in whole new country with a whole new family.
Yes, I left my friends, family, comfortable well-established life back in India when I decided to come to the States after I got married to my husband who was raised in America and living here for most of his life! All I could bring with me was memories! Memories I had built for 24 years of my life with my family and friends, the delicious food, the unique culture and a lot more!
At that point, I knew I had to start somewhere to do something meaningful with my life. So I decided to pursue a Masters of Computer Science, even though I already had Masters and Bachelors in Mathematics from India.

Culture Through Food

Yes, I decided to get more academics in my life so I can get a decent 9 to 5 job. I have had a very successful engineering career for over a decade now. Though there was still something in me that kept telling me I could do more than that. I brought this incredible culture from India with me which I could share in this new country with so many people! And the best way to share that was through food! Yes, Indian food is so unique and incredibly flavorful!

And especially when you can make it a bit healthier for you and the environment by choosing vegetarian options. I have been vegetarian my whole life and never felt a need to try anything other than that. That is because I know so many ways to make vegetarian food incredibly delicious and healthy!

Many people have this miss-conception of vegetarian food being bland, boring, grass-like, etc. I wanted to break that myth and show that there are so many ways to make vegetarian food delicious, nutritious and fun through my vegetarian food blog. I have so many Indian and fusion vegetarian recipes on my food blog to offer. All the recipes are incredibly flavorful and so easy to make! 

The Recipe

For example, the recipe I am sharing is one of the best and most popular Indian street-food. It is an Indo-Chinese dish. It is called Vegetable Manchurian. Air fried/Baked mixed vegetable balls smothered with spicy Indo-Chinese gravy. Veg Manchurian is Indo-Chinese street food from India. It is very very popular and insanely delicious. The Manchurian balls are made out of mixed veggies, flour, corn starch, spices and deep-fried.

Then simmered in a spicy gravy made out of a bunch of veggies and spices. My family and I absolutely love this dish so I decided to make it a little healthier by making it gluten-free, vegan and air fried. Instead of using white flour, I used gluten-free oats flour along with corn starch, added cabbage and carrots along with spices. And instead of deep-frying them, I air-fried them.

Indian Street Food

They can be baked as well if you do not have an air fryer! The gravy is made out of ginger, garlic, green chili, sriracha sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, ketchup, salt, and pepper. The balls are simmered into the thick spicy gravy and garnished with fresh cilantro and scallions! You can pair this with CAULIFLOWER MANCHURIAN ON THE BED OF ASIAN COLESLAW, CHILI MUSHROOMS, SPICY MANCHOW SOUP, CHILLI TOFU – VEGAN/GLUTENFREE, HOT AND SOUR SOUP etc to make a huge Indo-Chinese gluten-free and dairy-free feast!

This recipe is just one example of many more delicious recipes you will find on my blog. On My Vegetarian Roots, you’ll find so many healthy and delicious vegetarian recipes, that I make with my proud Indian roots I inherited from my mom, mom-in-law and grand maas with a touch of my creativity! My vegetarian food blog is to share vegetarian food creations which are a great combination of my Indian roots and food diversity I experienced in America.

I consider this my very tiny effort to make our health and environment better! If we all start making just a small amount of changes to help our mother nature healthy and happy, we will start seeing huge changes eventually! Who is with me on making this change?!?!

Thank you for being part of my roots, I am so glad to share my story with you all!Hetal Desai from @myvegetarianroots

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