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Festive bites, kheer, pudding »

[8 Nov 2014 | 3 Comments | ]
Recipes | Orange-almond rice pudding and Lapsi, Two Festive Indian Desserts – Life is about people not things

We are stuck with technology when what we really want is just stuff that works.” ~ Douglas Adams

Even though I am not a big fan of “Kitchen Gadgets’ per se, I have bought quite a few over the years. Some of which are an absolute essential in my daily cooking while some others live permanently on the shelf, unused and much neglected.

If only my ice-cream maker, juicer, coffee maker, electric kettle can talk…they would probably shout their heart out and tell you the misery of sitting idle for years in dark, lonely and claustrophobic loft of my kitchen ;-)

Festive bites, festive medley, fudge »

[18 Oct 2014 | 6 Comments | ]
Recipe | Easy Gulkand Mewa Burfi or Fig & Date Fudge with Rose preserve – And I am not complaining..

There are many things in life that I wish I could keep with me forever. The memories and days spent at my hometown in Udiapur tops that list.

I had a chance to visit Udaipur last week, which incidentally was my shortest ever trip to my hometown. I started at the wee hours of morning, left my children behind for a week, changed two fights, killed never-ending transit time at airport, and then traveled by road again to finally reach Udaipur late in night.

Yes, I did it all in one day. But I am not complaining.

Festive bites, festive medley, mocktails and drinks »

[15 Mar 2014 | 9 Comments | ]
Recipes | Healthy Sweet Empanadas or Gujiyas and A refreshing Drink, Thandai – Celebration of colours and nostalgia

Holi – the festival of colours, marks the beginning of spring season and is celebrated for two days. The first day eve begins with a bonfire or Holika dhahan which depicts the victory of good over evil. The next day is the time for playing with colours, greeting friends and sharing sweets with them.” Nostalgia started engulfing me as I narrated them my experiences.
And cooking traditional food during these celebrations could be a great way to stay connected to our roots.  I wanted to make a sweet Empanada called Gujiyas/Ghughra/Karanji/Karachika in India for them to compensate for the fun and frolic that we miss here.

Festive bites, festive medley, fudge, nutri bombs »

[29 Oct 2013 | 15 Comments | ]
Recipes | Sugar Free Date Rolls and Millet Churma Ladoos – The Power of Food to Bring Back Good Memories

Various legends associated to the origin of a festival in India leads to different rituals people follow to celebrate it which keeps the ‘amusement quotient’ quite high.
I received a call from the office of a very popular regional magazine  Dinakaran, sometime back. The editor informed  me that they are planning to feature 7-8 celebrities from various fields in Chennai with a traditional sweet recipe from their respective states in their special Diwali issue. And I am one among them.

What“!? I almost screamed…err..huh…did I hear it right?

Baking bites, granolas »

[1 Oct 2013 | 8 Comments | ]
Recipes | Sesame & Banana Flapjacks or Granola Bars – Traditions Are Priceless

But Tatha, what about those who are left hander, how can you ask them to perform rituals with right hand?” I heard my son arguing with his grandfather who insisted that he use right hand to offer flowers during a Puja at home.

After the Puja rituals were over their grandmother took a little bit of all the food offered to God and went backdoor. She then placed the food on boundary wall and started calling the crows..Caa..Caa…

Why do you always offer food to crows granny, why not a sparrow or a parrot?” questioned my daughter.

Tatha, I read it somewhere that tradition is an explanation for acting without thinking, is it so?”  And the argument between grandparent and grandchildren continued.

Baking bites, breakfast medley, granolas »

[20 Jul 2013 | 8 Comments | ]
Baking | Oatmeal & Almond Slices – Of Friends, Food and A Memorable Travel Trail

Remember the tiny kiosk where we had kulhar (mud pots) tea near Jhulaghat, that small village we stopped by for breakfast alongside river Kali, and the green house we barged in for lunch….everything is washed away in flood.” She told in one breath.

My heart feels heavy every time I watch the happenings in Uttarakhand, India on television.  The early heavy rains, flash floods and landslides in Uttarakhand or Uttaranchal last month have devastated this beautiful hill station of India.

I called ‘M’ my childhood friend from Uttarakhand the other day to inquire about her family. She could not stop cribbing about the mindless construction of illegal hotels and resorts by outsiders on river beds all around the valley leading to deforestation. “Hazards are inevitable, but such human activities convert hazards into catastrophe…and that’s what we are facing right now” I could feel the despair and vulnerability in her voice.

Appetizers & starters, breakfast medley, healthy snacks, Lunchbox bites »

[27 Feb 2013 | 14 Comments | ]
Recipe | Easy & Healthy Broccoli Patties – Simple Pleasures of Life

‘ If you truly love Nature, you will find beauty everywhere‘. ~ Van Gogh.  Early morning walk with my hubby is one activity I eagerly look forward to each day. Its a wonderful time I see some of the miracles of nature unfold as we walk along the narrow lanes and parks nearby.

The dim sky, the fresh morning air, quietness and the gentle pace of life is so enchanting.  The thumping of joggers zipping across, symphony of chirping birds, cling-cling of the milkman and the newspaper boys on cycle break the silence of nearly empty roads.

I have started appreciating these simple and small beauties of nature more and more after my new found love for photography. During one such walks I picked a few colorful leaves dressed in morning dew.

Baking bites, muffins »

[14 Feb 2013 | 16 Comments | ]
Recipes | Three Fruity Muffins – Weekend Baking is a Real Stress Buster

Life was much easier when Apple and Blackberry were just fruits‘. Inventions in modern day technology has reached to its pinnacle whereas I am still sitting at the bottom, hoping to catch hold of the tech dragon by its tail some day. But by the time I apprehend a little about how these applications work something new crops up and the former become obsolete. Alas, till date an Apple and a Blueberry continue to remain just plain fruits to this technology challenged mommy.

Festive bites, festive medley, fudge »

[15 Nov 2012 | 16 Comments | ]
Recipe | Healthy Raisin & Dried Figs Fudge – Perfect Time to Celebrate Just Living

Festivals to me are to celebrate the happiness that family & friends share together. A perfect time to celebrate just living! In India we have celebrations all round the year. Festival of lights (and sound) – Diwali being one of the major festivals of India everyone look forward to.

Though the festival is same, people all over India follow different rituals to celebrate it. In South India Diwali is celebrated with a sacred bath before dawn followed by prayers, getting blessings from elders and bursting crackers. While in other parts of India it is more of a pompous fun fare with grand Lakshmi Puja during evening hours and buying gold & other metals on Diwali.

I am neither a sweet eater nor a cracker lover and left to myself will not indulge in both on Diwali day. But my hubby makes sure that I make sweets and he buys crackers for children on Diwali, so that they appreciate the importance of festivals & traditions in our culture.

Baking bites, cinnamon rolls »

[9 Oct 2012 | 20 Comments | ]
Recipes | On a Roll…Baking Three Versions of Cinnamon Rolls to Celebrate

‘Passion surprises. One doesn’t search it. It can happen to you tomorrow.’ ~Adjani.  Today is that tomorrow for me. Sunday morning turned delightful with a mail, congratulating for winning a food photography contest on an online site of a National Daily ‘The Hindu’! And then the happy feet dance begins with baking loads of cinnamon rolls to celebrate the same with family & friends.

The news is a pleasant surprise, more so when I am just beginning to climb, trying to learn the intricacies of food photography & food styling while still standing on the very first step.

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