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Festive bites, fresh fruit desserts »

[13 Feb 2014 | 2 Comments | ]
Recipes | Two Easy & Healthy Avocado Desserts – Food is the Most Delicious Expression of Emotions

And then came the moment we all were waiting for. I almost held my breath and didn’t move a bit when my children took their first bite. They ate, looked at me and gave a mysterious smile which peaked my curiosity :)

I could not make out the taste when I scooped my first bite into Avocado Chocolate Mousse, but with the second bite I was instantly transformed into chocolaty haven. The rich, creamy and buttery taste of Avocado mousse seduced me into taking one bite and then another, till I was scraping the corners and reached the bottom of my ramekin.

The no-cook, easy and quick Avocado mousse taste exactly like how I expect my dessert to be. Food is the most delicious expression of emotions.

Festive bites, fresh fruit desserts, pudding »

[29 Mar 2013 | 10 Comments | ]
Recipes | Fruity Firni – A Creamy Indian Rice Pudding Shared with a Food Blogger Friend at Home

You can take a girl out of desserts, but you can’t take desserts out of a girl. Oh yes, I was born with a dessert spoon! According to my nanny my mom was feasting on hot Malpuas dipped in creamy Rabdi a few minutes before she went into labour pains, much to the chagrin of my stressed out doctor father.

Desserts were an important part of our everyday meal during growing  up years in Udaipur, Rajasthan. Our family was certainly not an exception in a state where a day starts and ends with a sweet, what with people queuing up in food shops before the day breaks, fishing out hot Jalebis floating in warm milk for breakfast.

Festive bites, festive medley, pudding »

[5 Nov 2012 | 24 Comments | ]
Recipes | Quick Caramelized Pumpkin Butter and a No-Bake Eggless Pumpkin Pudding – When The Equation of Life Changes..

There comes a time when priorities win over passion and you stand confused and run-down staring at the golden opportunities pass by.

When the equation of life changes…

A senior person from a popular holiday resort in India approached me to get involved in a photo shoot project some days back. A few phone calls and mails from them made it clear that it is going to be a large scale project. The project required more than a weeks involvement and a few out door shoots as well. I asked for some time to think over it, and from then started days of ‘should I’ or ‘ shouldn’t  I’ ordeal.

Baking bites, bread and buns »

[18 Sep 2012 | 25 Comments | ]
Baking | Eggless Oats & Banana Quick Bread

Baking is a real challenge if you wish to avoid two of the most important ingredients which give your cake that spongy and light texture, one is egg and the other is All purpose flour.

Though there is no specific reason for avoiding eggs in my bakes, I dislike using all purpose flour (maida) mainly due to health aspects. And this is what exactly happens with each bake of mine…will it rise…will it not. Anxiety vanishes when I see a gorgeous golden beauty popping out from my oven.

Oh yes, I too occasionally come across an adamant bread which fails to rise, that fussy cake showing the gooey inside and soft cookies which resembles more of flat breads. But then you learn with failures, the rate of which reduces drastically every time you see a perfect bake and a rewarding smile on the faces of your loved ones.

Festive bites, kheer »

[12 Jun 2012 | 20 Comments | ]
Dessert Recipe | Healthy Black Rice Pudding – A Little is Never Enough

I knew very little about rice till I got married and Basmati rice was the only rice I ate and cooked with, as rice is not a staple food to the place I was born. Many households of Rajasthan in India enjoy cooking an occasional Pilaf, a Biryani or simple Daal Chawal (lentil-rice) at times to break the monotony of eating wheat based dishes the whole year.

It was much later in life that I came to know about boiled rice, brown rice, Jasmine rice and many other rice varieties. Now these varieties adorn my pantry and we all love dishes cooked with these nutty, chewy and healthy rice in our meal.

The other day during a house warming ceremony of a friend, we were served an unusual dessert which looked not so pleasant but tasted extremely delicious. I couldn’t stop asking my host about the same and was informed that this is a very special dish made during important functions using Black rice.

Foods that heal »

[12 Jun 2012 | 2 Comments | ]
Health | Black Rice – Add This Rare, Tasty and Healthy Grain in Your Diet

“Madam these are a special variety of sticky rice, quite popular in Thai cuisine and cost almost 4 times more than normal rice.” Replied the salesman hurriedly, after seeing a perplexed look on my face holding a small bag of Black rice. This rare and aromatic sweet rice is not a very common site in many Indian stores.

Black rice was once called as ‘The forbidden rice‘ in ancient China and it was reserved only for the emperor and the nobles and was forbidden for the common man. As they believed that the rice has special properties and helps in longevity and is aphrodisiac in nature. This tasty and healthy sticky rice is extensively used in many Asian countries due to the myriads of health benefits associated with it.

Baking bites, bread and buns, cakes, product/book review »

[2 Jun 2012 | 26 Comments | ]
Baking | Cornish Saffron Bread/Cake – An Airy, Aromatic and Delectable Bake

The vast open Saffron fields in Jammu is worth a visit for any traveler in India. I was amazed to see these tiny plants with no prominent shoots and leaves, but just large bright violet flowers with crimson colored stigma or saffron as the main plant body. Acres of farm land could yield just a few grams of Saffron. No doubt the hard work that goes in cultivating Saffron makes this spice rare & pricey.

In India Saffron or Kesar as is called in Hindi, is extensively used in making milk based desserts and for cooking aromatic basmati rice Biryani. Though I don’t use saffron in my bakes, these popular Indian saffron cookies - Nankhatai are my favorite.

Festive bites, fresh fruit desserts, ice-creams »

[30 Apr 2012 | 34 Comments | ]
Dessert recipes | An Indulgence with A Few Fruity Ice Cream Treats – Summer Time is Fun

Ah, summer, what power you have to make us suffer and like it. ~ Russel Baker. Am sure many would be one to love summer for a good reason – Ice Creams! There was a time when the very word ‘Ice-cream‘ was banned in my house. Recurrent cough & cold and instructions from the music teacher to avoid anything cold for the children made sure that ice cream cease to exist in our house. For good long years both of us also avoided ice creams served during any party or functions lest our children will get tempted.

But now that they are grown up and have better immunity power the ban has been partially lifted. They are allowed to eat ice creams but have to gulp warm water immediately to reduce the effect of cold. Does this sound too cruel…Well, I have heard such weird stories from many possessive & protective parents. And I willingly admit that I am one among them :)

kids lunchbox, Lunchbox bites, lunchbox medley, Veggies/curries »

[12 Mar 2012 | 29 Comments | ]
Recipe | Vegetable Pasta in Wholewheat Flour White sauce – Its’ Healthy & Yum

Pasta, noodles, pies, pizzas…no, these are not the food that I could relate my childhood memories with. I was introduced to these food quite late in life. It was when I started to work, living independently and cooking on my own that I craved for eating out during weekends. And these carbohydrate and calorie loaded food were quite a stress buster and a good remedy to homesickness.

That was a phase I suppose, as now when we are in our forties both me and hubby prefer eating simple and light Indian food. But wait…this was only till our children grew and joined us on the dinner table! Now the menu in my kitchen often drifts from Indian to global on weekends as I surrender more often to the demands of my children who love these carb food. Times change or rather we change for the sake of our children. Now that both mom & dad don’t mind an occasional binge and dig into Pastas or have a bite or two of that cheesy Pizza just to be one with their kids :)

Festive bites, fresh fruit desserts »

[21 Feb 2012 | 33 Comments | ]
Dessert Recipe | Strawberry Yogurt Panna Cotta with Grape Compote – A Healthy Treat

A bowl of creamy wobbly Panna Cotta soaked in juicy fresh fruit compote is a best bet for an easy, quick and exotic dessert for any day! Panna Cotta means “cooked cream’ in Italian and this simple dessert is served with caramel, chocolate sauce or any fruit compote. Compote is a sort of thickened sweet sauce cooked with stewed fresh or dried fruits mainly berries in sugar.

It is really hard to switch over from the incredibly addictive cream based panna cotta with  yogurt and coconut milk. But then a look at the health benefits of yogurt and coconut makes it a wiser decision to do so. Panna Cotta cooked with coconut milk which I make often takes the recipe to different levels. I made two batches, the one set in the ramekins are with cream & yogurt combo and the other in the glass is just plain yogurt panna cotta. And no, I did not miss the creamy culprit from my recipe :)

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