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Suggested Menus

Following the Vedic custom of a substantial breakfast, an even more substantial lunch, a light dinner, and from time to time an elaborate feast, the suggested menus in this section will give you an idea of which dishes go well together. With the recipes in this book, you’ll be able to make a different menu for each day of the month. Feel free, of course, to add preparations to the menus or delete them, as you wish.

• A typical breakfast consists of a main dish of grains and vegetables, a light bread, a little yogurt, and a slice of fresh ginger. A natural herb tea (like ginger tea) will go well with this meal. If you prefer a lighter breakfast, there are many possibilities, such as puris and jam, shrikhand and papadams, vegetable or fruit pakoras, a raita, or fresh fruit and yogurt.

Scrambled cheese with fried tomatoes
Whole-wheat pancakes
Fried chick-peas and peppers
Salty yogurt drink

Vegetable and dal stew
Steamed dal and yogurt
Coconut chutney
Yogurt

Boiled rice, dal, and
vegetables
Banana puris
Fried chick-peas in yogurt
Yogurt

Vegetable semolina
Potato-stuffed pancakes
Spiced chick-peas
Sweet yogurt drink

The classic Vedic lunch consists of rice, dal, chapatis, and a vegetable. To round it out, you can add a salad, chutney, sweet, and beverage. In the summer a little yogurt goes well with lunch.

Plain white rice
Dal and vegetable soup
Chapatis
Green beans in sauce
Tomato chutney or
Spinach and yogurt salad
Fruit fritters
Salty yogurt drink

Rice and yogurt
Tomato and toor dal soup
Chapatis
Eggplant, spinach, and
tomato puree
Dal croquettes in yogurt
Date and tamarind chutney
Sweet semolina pudding

Lemon rice
Creamy vegetable soup
Chick-pea-flour pancakes
Peas, cheese, and tomatoes
Pineapple chutney or
Potato and coconut salad
Indian ice cream
Anise-flavored drink

Coconut rice
Urad dal with spiced yogurt
Chick-pea-flour bread
Cauliflower and
potatoes in sauce
Pan-fried seasoned cheese
Creamed vermicelli
Cumin and tamarind drink

• For dinner, a vegetable with a light bread goes well with a savory, chutney, sweet, and beverage. It’s not advisable to eat a lot of grain before resting, otherwise the stomach works hard all night. For a snack before retiring, try hot milk and banana puris.

Seasoned okra with coconut
Indian crackers
Fried potato patties
Tomato chutney
Crisp fried spirals

Bengali mixed vegetable stew
Flaky whole-wheat bread
Apple chutney
Fruit turnovers
Lemon drink

Stuffed cabbage leaves
Puris
Lemon rice
Carrot pudding
Anise-flavored milk

Vegetable and dal stew
Potato-filled flat bread
Vegetable fritters
Mint chutney
Thick, flavored yogurt

• Śrīla Prabhupāda gave us this standard feast menu: an opulent rice, a wet vegetable, a dry vegetable, a savory, a chutney, puris, a raita, one or two sweets, a beverage, and khir. A sumptuous feast gives many people a chance to experience the opulence of Kṛṣṇa. Śrīla Prabhupāda taught that normally a devotee does not hanker for palatable dishes, and eats only what he needs. Therefore he advised the devotees to eat simple meals during the week, and on Sunday, to enjoy the “love feast” with the temple guests. The number of feast dishes can increase unlimitedly. In our temples, we celebrate auspicious occasions such as the birthday of Lord Kṛṣṇa or the spiritual master with feasts of as many as [i]108 dishes, or even more.

Mixed vegetable rice
Deep-fried cheese balls in cream sauce
Potatoes au gratin
Spiced carrot croquettes
Mint chutney
Banana puris
Fruit turnovers
Cumin and tamarind drink
Sweet rice

Plain white rice
Sweet and sour vegetable
Steamed spinach and cheese
Vegetable fritters
Tomato chutney
Puris
Chick-pea-flour confections
Lemon drink
Sweet rice

Spicy rice
Vegetable and cheese stew
Fried cauliflower, potatoes
and cheese
Dal croquettes in yogurt
Date and tamarind chutney
Puris
Thick, flavored yogurt
Anise-flavored drink
Sweet rice

Saffron rice with cheese balls
Spinach balls in tomato sauce
Stuffed vegetables
Vegetable turnovers
Coriander chutney
Masala puris
Fancy Indian cheese sweet
Sweet yogurt drink
Sweet rice


[i] In Vedic culture the number 108 is considered auspicious because there are 108 principal gopis (cowherd girlfriends) of Lord Kåñëa and 108 Upanisads (part of the Vedic literature).