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Simple girl with not-so-simple thinking.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Khajoor mein atka!

The very mention of hot and spicy food gets me drooling. Yup, I agree, tangy, sour, spicy things have always been my weakness.
Chaat, tamarinds, pickles, chutneys, sauces; if they get your tongue click. That's my type.

So, I was on the hunt for similar recipes on the net and decided to make this!

Khajoori Achaar (coined this name myself)

Makes about 200 gms of pickle which goes well with, well whatever you like it with! I prefer just picking and licking it away to glory.

Seedless dates - 1 cup
Ginger & Garlic shredded - 1 teaspoon full each
Green Chillies- finely chopped - 1 teaspoon

Vinegar - 1 teaspoon

For seasoning
Curry leaves - for tempering
Asafoetida / Hing - 1/2 teaspoon
Salt, Red Chili , Turmeric powder - 1 fat pinch each
Sugar - 1 teaspoon
Oil - 1/4 cup

1. Heat the oil in the pan. Keep the flame very low through out.
2. Temper Curry Leaves, Green Chilies, Ginger and Garlic and saute mildly.
3. Add the dates. Cover with lid and let them become soft. Add Salt, Chili powder, Turmeric, Sugar, Hing and mix well. Switch off the flame and take the pan off the stove.
4. Add vinegar to this mix. If you like it to get more soft and saucy, add some water to this mix. But then you're reducing the life of your pickle by doing so.
5. Store in a dry bottle and refrigerate to avoid any spoilage. :)

Tada! Droolicious!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Matar Paneer Methi Maar ke !

Winter vegetables give me childhood nostalgia. The crispy Mooli paranthas, aromatic Methi malai, tender Gobhi aloo. Of course now these vegetables are perennial in Bangalore, but their aroma still give me the winter warmth.

Dad gifted me these uber cool storage bags which keep the leaves and fruits fresh for days together! So I wanted to use this Methi for as long as I could.

As my dear friend T was coming home for lunch and I made this!

The major components of the dish were ; home made malai paneer, green peas, methi (fenugreek) leaves.

Serves : 4 

Onion - 2 big ones
Tomato - 3 big ones
Ginger garlic paste
Fresh/ Dried Methi (fenugreek) leaves
Dry Red Chillies
Set Curd - 3 heaped spoons
Green Peas - 1 cup full
Cottage cheese - 200 gms


1. Saute onions till golden brown, add salt, chili powder, turmeric.
Add chopped methi leaves and tomatoes. Cover with a lid and cook til they turn orange-ish. 

 2. Take this off the flame. Use a blender and make this gravy into a coarse paste (this is purely optional).
Add set curd to this and mix to give a smooth creamy texture.

3. Add a little oil to the pressure pan. Temper some red chillies (for that lip-smacking red color) and add cottage cheese to this. Add green peas and the gravy made earlier. 
Close the lid and steam cook for 2 whistles. Your Matar Paneer Methi Maar ke is ready!

 Since I went all the way on the food festivities, I topped it with Ajwain (Carom seeds) puris! 
( A little fun with the dough meanwhile )


Friday, December 7, 2012

No food shall be wasted!

I'm sure every house has some kid (or fussy adult) who's a waster. I'm not implying anything if my dear husband is reading this post.

So, I was left with 3 paranthas from  Prasad's untouched packed lunch. So Tada, here's the crunchy hot solution to these. Roti ke Pakodey.

Left-over roti / parantha, cut into small piecesBesan / Gram Flour - 1 cup
1 medium-sized onion chopped
Coriander leaves chopped (optional)
Salt, Chilli, Jeera ( Cumin seeds) to taste
Oil to deep fry

1. Mix the gram flour and all the spices.
2. Start pouring water and churning the mixed gram flour into a batter. It should remain thick enough to be a smooth fluid. Don't fret, in case you dilute it a bit more, you can always add more besan or just add a spoon of ghee to it.
3. Mix the roti , coriander and the chopped onions to the besan batter.
4. Deep fry these on medium flame.

So the same people who disowned this poor Roti will now be begging for more!

Done! Droolicious. 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Hot, Humid, Humble Mangalore

Our lovely little trip to Mangalore had us wiping our foreheads in its scorching 30 degrees.

It was Prasad's father's sixtieth birthday celebration. I wore this for the Satyanarayan Puja. Prasad himself was in the Mund and Shawl (picture that he gladly deleted :( ).

Our ritualistic trip to Village Restaurant kept to its image especially with the Paneer Ghee Roast. Must Try! When the ghee of the previous night had us tossing and turning with guilt all night, Prasad and I headed to the serene beach at Sultan Battery. Its just a 10 minute walk from our home there. The early morning ferry to the beach put a smile on our sleepy faces.

Pabbas helped reduce our gut temperatures for sure. Not just that, Naturals ice cream is now at Mangalore! I could gorge on that Tender coconut flavor shamelessly.

Tonnes of home made food, heat, repeated baths and superior quality clean fresh air; that's what Mangalore is all about. All you people, when you need a breath of fresh air, head to this little town where roads are as small and twisted as the minds of politicians. But, the whiff of coconut shell fumes among palm trees will give you a new lease of  your tired city mind.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Banana Vanilla Cupcakes

So I was gifted the cupcakes molds and the natural justice came to it when I made these beauties.
Simple, pretty and instantly consumed.
I did some basic icing that I learnt from the net, but honestly Prasad loves the ugly sibling of the cupcakes, the muffins with no icing at all. So, depending on your liking you can choose.

Also, don't fret if you can't go all fancy with cupcakes. Use the same batter for making a spongy cake!


Dry components
1.5 cups maida
1.25 cups ground sugar
1 3/4th teaspoon of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of cooking soda
3 spoons of cocoa powder (optional if making chocolate cake)

Wet Components ( ensure all of them are at room temperature)
1 cup milk
3/4th cup cream / cooking butter ( if not this, add 1 egg and whatever cream you have)
1 mashed banana ( optional, use a ripe one)
Few drops of any essence

1. Grease the cupcake wax papers.
2. If you're using an oven, preheat it and keep it ready to bake at 180 degrees.
3. First, mix all the dry components together with a fork. Ensure everything is consistently mixed.
4. Blend all the wet components in a separate bowl. You can use a blender for this as well.
5. Keep the dry components down and start pouring the wet mixture over this slowly and steadily. Keep stirring with the fork in 'same direction' while doing this. Ensure no lumps are formed.
6. Whip the mix now softly with the fork itself and you'll see tiny air bubbles forming on the top.
7. Immediately Lay the batter into the cupcake paper molds and place these into the cupcake holding tray.
Note: Always fill only 2/3rd of any mold with cake / cupcake batter.
8. Shove it into the preheated oven at 180 degrees for 20 mins. Or 15 minutes in the microwave should do as well!

1. Do not Whip too hard. Whip the batter softly to ensure trapping air into it.
2. Do not Whip too long.
3. Do not Use cold components
4. Whip in same direction
5. Whip immediately after mixing as the baking powder has come into action. There is no time to waste
6. Do not open the oven/ microwave door in between as the cake won't lift.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Red Crispies Meatballs

(Image courtesy simplyrecipes.com)

I'm back after a LONG hiatus! I decided that at least I should start with posting all my drafted recipes!

I realized I had never experimented on making meat-balls. It is so easy, its unbelievable!
And the beautiful aroma of warm creamy curry fills up your senses in these winters; you'll be one happy person.

Preparation time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 20 mins
Serves: 3-4

Minced Chicken - 3 cups
Garlic paste - 3 spoonful
Ginger paste - 3 spoonful
Coriander leaves
1 large Onion - chopped
2 large Tomatoes
2 slices of bread
1 cup milk (optional)
Salt, Pepper, cumin seeds, chilly powder, chicken tandoori masala/ any curry masala (optional)


Meatballs I prefer making these separately as it gives them a chance to get all roasted on the outside.
- Mix the clean minced chicken, salt, pepper and bread slices (crushed). The bread is to get them all crispy and give a good binding.
- Grease your hands and make small balls out of this minced meat. Ensure that the balls are about the size of 1 tablespoon full.
- Lay these on a flat greased vessel (non-stick preferably) on medium heat. Cover with lid.
- You'll see a beautiful creamy white color on these followed by a brownish roasted tinge. They will cook in their own chicken stock.

*Let me say that once these are ready, you'll be almost inclined to gobble them down right at this stage.

- Pour some oil in a cooking vessel. Put the cumin seeds and let them splutter.
- Add the chopped onions in this and let them turn golden brown.
- Add the ginger, garlic, salt, chilly now. You may add market-ready Chicken Tandoori Masala, Chole Masala etc. Give it 2 minutes on low flame.
- Add roughly cut tomatoes and cover with lid. You'll notice in 5 minutes that they turn orangish red.
- Add 1 1/2 cups of milk and 1 cup of water and let it boil. (optional step for getting a creamy gravy).
- Pour this curry on the meatballs, add a cup of water and let it simmer for about 5 mins.

Tada!! You're ready with Red Crispies Meatballs!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Cheese Sprint Dosas

I woke up in the morning with a smile on my face. Winters.
They remind me of childhood, of love, the quilts we've slept in, snuggling in front of the room heaters, of all the good times and piping hot food that we've shared in these frozen warm moments.

Rubbing my hands together in the morning breeze, I stood in the kitchen when it dawned on me. What better way to get you warm than some molten cheese! :)

As always I believe in quick recipes and I had to remember that Prasad will give me the longest face ever if I repeated yesterday's Dosa. Thus, here's our recipe of the day!

Cheese Sprint Dosa

Always remember, presentation is Everything! Well, almost everything.

1 medium sized Onion
Grated Cheese
Salt, Pepper
Dosa Dough

1. Cut the onions and grate the cheese.

2. Mix these two together and add salt & pepper to taste.

3. Spread the Dosa batter on a greased pan. Make smaller sizes as shown in the picture.

4. Immediately sprinkle the cheese mix on it and cover it.

5. Covering with a lid ensure faster cooking and especially the porous (and soft) Dosa.Which I Totally Love.

6. Toss it! Crisp it out.

7. Serve with Coconut-Ginger chutney and Tomato Ketchup! O yes, who said Ketchup goes well only with Burgers and Fries.

Bon Appetit!!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Hello!? You're expected somewhere!

What panics me most? Being late.
When I am late to work or late for an appointment or commitment.
Especially when I leave the house in a hurry, I'm almost always sure that I've forgotten somethign behind. Which later reveals when I'm almost half the distance away from home.

This is what amazes me that when you see movie scenes which need a person to go on stage or for a fight or a conference or live on TV. When the person is told, "You're up in 5!". He / she just nods and continues with their daily chores like nothing happened.
They complete a whole scene, some dialogues, mental perplexities, emotional turmoils, reconciliation with heartbreaks and if Bollywood movie, then perhaps a song as well. Meanwhile, you've forgotten that they are expected somewhere else and suddenly the assistant peeps in and reminds us!

If I were to be in that scene. I would pop up in the first call and march down! Or mostly would have cold feet to begin with and perhaps not even make it to the stage 'cause I fainted en-route.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Crispy Sada Bahaar Parantha!!

Tell me if these don't melt in your mouth.
And what's more? They are healthier than most dishes you can think of in five minutes!

This Easy Wheezy Recipe power packs all the nutrition that you can ask for, so its best for Mommies and barely takes 15 minutes to get done; what more can working girls ask for?

This proportion makes around six paranthas.

2 bundles of Methi leaves ( Fenugreek). You even get them neatly cut and bundled up nowadays to make your life easier.
Garlic pods - 4
One small onion
Salt, Chilly powder
2 cups of Wheat flour
Curd - on the side.


 1. Grind the Methi, Garlic and Onion in a grinder.

2. Mix this paste into wheat flour, add salt, chilly, some oil and knead it. You mostly wouldn't need to add any additional water. Be vary of making the dough too slimy, as the Methi and Onion discharge water themselves. (Yup, I don't knead it by hand. Why waste energy here when you can use it in better ways!)

3. Make regular Paranthas with this dough.

Wowie! You've got yourselves Sada-Bahaar Paranthas. Even the kiddos who hate greens, will float towards the kitchen on the whiff of these beauties.

4. Serve them hot with set curd and pickle of your choice!

Bon Appetite.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Face the daemons!

Confrontation. Some of us just hate the sound of that word.
Me? It makes me go uneasy in my guts. Especially because I want to make it face-saving for the other person.

I take pride in the fact that I tend to notice a lot of facts and things around me that most don't. I do think I am overly-observant. But then, sometimes I just wish I wasn't. Ignorance can be a bliss especially when you want to erase the fact you've discovered.

There are just so many occasions when I have realized that I could have done without the additional piece of information that has landed in my grey cells. And once it does, I am not at peace until I do something about it. Like the other time I observed that my ever-faithful maid had flicked half a cake of washing soap. Now, she might have been doing this all the past years, or might have been her first time. I was just too upset knowing that she 'can' steal. I hated confronting her for something as petty but I did want her to know that I knew. Finally, I did. And it wasn't that bad. She gave some lame explanation for it and I halfheartedly accepted it to kill the topic.

With friends, you observe some annoying habits which you would like to correct as a friendly gesture. But then, no one likes free advise in today's world. Also, my relentless brain can't help but notice these habits again and again. Like those who pick their nose, tap their feet at 10 times per second!, have lice in their heads or don't wash their hands but like to share your food!

Confrontation at work is even worse. You don't want to burn bridges with anyone. Yet, whether friendly or not-so-friendly suggestion is in the calling. I could never get myself to say No. Or, "Sorry! I beg to differ".

But, I think time and experience has told me that its best to confront. Sometimes you're doing the other person a favor. What would you think?