August 31, 2011


A month beginning with notes of celebration. Now be it Eid, Ganesh Chaturthi or the Labour day weekend that you may be enjoying with your family,here's a super simple recipe of the most delectable dessert that tops my list of the sinful ten.

Shrikhand is Indian sweetened saffron yogurt, eaten on its own or sometimes with puris /deep fried bread.Traditionally, curd or plain yogurt is hung in a cheese cloth for 7-8 hours or overnight and flavored the next day with some aromatics. Like a blank canvass, you can bring your own spin to this basic recipe that i present by adding cubed fruits or fruit pulp.

August 21, 2011

Rajasthani gatte

Lately, we have been marathoning flavors from home. Quintessentially rajasthani, gatte (pronounced ga-tte) are savory gramflour dumpling. A great dish to surprise your palette, if you have'nt tried it already. 

Rajasthani cuisine like many other cuisines, is truly influenced by the availability of ingredients locally. An arid land, vegetation in the region is scarce.In the era gone by, food mainly consisted of many variations of lentils and dried produce. The hot climate required eatables which could  last longer. Fast forwarding to the present times, this recipe comes handy when you find your refrigerator scarce by the end of the week :)

August 18, 2011

Rajasthani garlic chutney

Our home smells great today. I just made dal bati with the boldest lahsun-ki- chutney (garlic chutney) for lunch. The perfect compliments bati dal garlic chutney, are the weekend staples in any rajasthani home like mine. Though i'll confess , our global diet these days lends an empty slot for this favorite food from the rugged land of warriors, only once a month. I 'll share the circle of my rajasthani plate soon but today i wish to highlight this fiery , fully packed chutney recipe.

This chutney is made mostly in winters as large quantities of garlic in it keep you warm. But like rest of the things which are year round now, garlic chutney is a must must in any rajasthani's pantry. History has it that lahsun ki chutney formed the working lunch of peasants in rajasthan, along with bajra ki roti /millet bread and onions.

August 12, 2011

Mangoes and cream

Feels really long that i posted some love ! So here i am again.

Mangoes and many stories of summer embrace my mind . As a kid i remember the whole joint family sitting and eating mangoes by the buckets and yes literally. Water was stored overnight in big earthen pots and stood covered on our big terrace under the glittering  blanket of stars and moon. The cool water quenched our thirst like no refrigerated or iced water can or could back then too. Well continuing, the next morning, cartons of washed mangoes were immersed in the pot which were then shifted in shade. And done lunch, we all would sit and relish the super delicious mangoes around an appetizing platter of  family talks, jokes and gossip. Hmm summers could never be summers enough if not for our siblings cousins aunts uncles parents grandparents. Sitting far away from home, i feel cocooned,  to know i have a train of relatives to call mine and call anytime :)

August 05, 2011

Summer borscht

Borscht had been on my 'have to try ' recipe list for long. It comes in two variants - cold and hot. Summer borscht is akin to gazpacho or any other cold soup, a delicious variant in the latter pedigree, from parts of Central and Eastern Europe. 

Quoting from wikipedia , ''Borscht began its existence from trimmings of cellared vegetables consumed throughout the winter months. Most families had a container, usually a kettle or stove pot, kept outside to store those trimmings. Around the first spring thaw, that pot was placed on the fire and cooked into a soup-like meal. One of the primary vegetables of the Slavic diet consumed during the winter months was beets. Hence the recipe changed into what is traditionally known as a beet soup''

We try the cold version to fend of the heat today. So if u love yogurt and beets- look no further at all. And BTW i levitated towards the bright colors of this soup at first and now am totally hooked to the flavors too. The color pink reminds me of the dry colors we played with, during a festival called Holi in India. 

A good make ahead recipe which you can easily store in your refrigerator for 2-3 days. I feel it tastes better, sitting over a day definitely. 

August 01, 2011

Curried Indian yam / Suran ki sabji

Extreme heat in the helm and thus everything outdoorsy looked mundane and unexciting for the past 2-3 days. Sitting at home this whole weekend, i felt lethargic and bored. Before i noticed, my focus ,shifted inward- but one which meandered the full loop of my random day.

I started on the periphery, donning the shoes of the usual homemaker -cooked a meal, cleaned the closets, polished some furniture, vacuumed and re-arranged the rooms (pet peeves: unorganized, dirty space!!) Obvious next, it proceeded to a good soak for myself. Still more time on hand, i indulged at a near by salon. Back home, a light snack and I was immersed into the couch with the day's headlines and a business magazine. A slave to still more time, the question was on the horizon and it soon shone-- Where am i headed , what are my goals?? Grave question and one which settled steadily on me ,like the early twilight seducing the sun to rise. I tried to think , but could'nt concentrate. I pondered deep but my answers felt enveloped, as if in double shrines. I felt an impermeable wall within , for i cud'nt gain any sincere evocation. My mind drew an analogy, the purpose the goal that i strived for- was like the familiar but unlit foyer of an outhouse, deep in the yard, beside a bright cheerful home at night.

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