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Grilled vegetables ratatouille with green peas mash, polenta and stir fried vegetables - no, this was not my choice of dish, but my friend @smitadeo_ ordered this for herself at @thehomemadecafeandbar when we met last week. She insisted that I try it and well I had to comply! I must admit that this was delicious and totally something that I’d order when I go to the cafe again and would recommend it to others too! 💕 . . I noticed that this was part of a lean menu that they’ve introduced and there’s a lot out there which makes it easy for people who’re on diets or following a strict regime but still want to indulge in eating out. Also, how vibrant is this plate? 😊
“You see, the pizza that I knew and fell in love with as a sassy, annoying child was my first step towards world cuisine, unbeknownst to me. It was good enough to make an Italian gasp for breath, and a fussy child with no appetite fall in love with eating. They were bright, colourful, cheery and everything happy, all at once. Made on thick pizza bases (pizza breads were one of the only readymade indulgences back then) purchased from a local bakery, smeared with tomato ketchup, loaded with onion, tomato and bell pepper, and of course, grated, processed cheese – there could be no better way to party (cue: the essential ‘90s Bollywood playlist) than with pizza. There were no thin crusts or wood-fire aftertastes, Scooby Doo was one of the most viral television programmes, and the rupee was about ₹40 to a dollar.” . . An excerpt from my blog post - An ode to pizza. Have you read it? This pizza I ordered for room service during my stay at @theleelapalacenewdelhi was like a bite into nostalgia! It also happens to be one of my favourites 🌸🍕 . . Which are your favourite pizza joints and pizza related memories?
Finally sharing the #recipe for the rajma that I make, with all of you. Let me know how it turns out for you! Also, before you ask - we use chakrata rajma at home 😊 . . Boil 1 cup rajma For masala: 1 medium sized onion 5 garlic pods 4 tomatoes 2tbsp ghee 1tsp garam masala 1tsp red chilli powder 1tsp jeera Salt to taste • purée the onion garlic and add that in in a kadhai with hot ghee + jeera. • once the onion paste begins to brown, add the fresh tomato purée • add all the dry masalas and cook this mixture for at least 30 mins on slow flame till the ghee begins to separate • once done, add this masala to the rajma and cook it again for 1 whistle of the pressure cooker • once ready, blend some of the rajma so that you get a thick gravy
One of my favourite things to order when at a South Indian joint, is onion uttapam with coconut chutney. For some reason I’ve never tried to make it at home, probably because making idlis in one batch is easier! Finally yesterday I decided to try my hand at it and make hot uttapams for breakfast. To be honest, I wasn’t left with much choice - you see after making one batch of idlis I felt that the batter is too less and added some water to it and ended up making it too thin for the second batch of idlis. Then I decided to make uttampams with it, because I couldn’t waste that batter! 🙈🙃 . . So fired up a hot tava, added a few drops of oil to it and smeared the batter on top and let it cook till it crisped! Added some chopped onions, green chillies and podi that I bought from @southernfoodtrail and cooked the other side well too. Served this with coconut chutney, ghee podi and a cuppa chai! 💕 . . With this I finally know how to make not so round but delicious uttappams! Some kitchen disasters can lead to delicious surprises. No? ☺️
Made these honey chilli potatoes last weekend with some fried rice for lunch. A lot of you requested for the recipe for the same, so sharing that today. I learnt this from @namakswaadanusaar, and honestly it didn’t turn out even half as good as hers, but confidence dekho aap ladki ka 😂❤️ . . Here’s the #recipe: . 1/2kg baby potatoes is what you need and for the sauce you’ll need soy, honey, pepper, and stir fry sauce from @veeba_in (she’s used schezwan sauce instead) and salt. . . Boil the baby potatoes but make sure that they still have a crunch and aren’t mushy. Later in a pan toss these potatoes with some salt and pepper and pan fry them a little. Then add a mixture of these sauces to the potatoes and cook for 2 mins. Later garnish with sesame seeds! 😊
Yesterday I opened my fridge and found a little bit of all the vegetables that I like in there. I wondered what I could make with it, but I knew I didn’t want to go for my usual option of mixed vegetables in onion-garlic gravy, hence came up with the idea of making kebabs with them for tea time snacking! So this is what I call my “clean your fridge kebabs” :D Here’s what I had in hand: Spinach leaves - 3/4 Green peas - 1 cup Carrots - 1 French beans - 3 Boiled potatoes - 3 Green chillies - grated Garlic - grated Ginger - grated Chana dal - roasted and coarsely ground Roasted chickpea flour (besan) - 3tsps Water Oil Salt To make the mixture for these kebabs I blanched spinach leaves, green peas, carrots and beans and added them in a bowl with chopped boiled potatoes. To this I added salt, grated garlic, grated ginger and grated green chillies to the vegetables. Later made a coarse mixture of these in my @hamiltonbeachindia JMG, adding 2tbsp of water. To bind this mixture I kneaded it with roasted besan instead of maida and made small tikkis out of it. I also added coarsely ground chana dal for additional crunch. Keep this aside for a while in the fridge. Later, in a kadhai with hot oil, deep fry the tikkis on medium heat for 2-3 minutes. I deep fried these because the heavy rains demanded for something indulgent, but you can choose to bake or air fry them as well. Its honestly not too hard to make and is delicious to eat! Do try 😃
#DelectablePunjab: In Punjab whenever halwa is made in any household, the first reaction is “kyon, ki manande peye Han?” (What are we celebrating?), because halwa is Punjabi community is usually made to commemorate a special occasion. Apart from the usual aata and sooji halwa that is made, the one I love the most is the dry panjeeri that is made as a Prasad and is loaded with dry fruits and roasted wheat. During my last visit in June 2019, my Badi Mumma had made a container full of panjeeri for my sister who had just delivered a baby girl. It is said that panjeeri is not only nourishing but also helps new mothers with postpartum healing and lactation. . . Here’s what my Badi Mumma had added to this panjeeri, which is to be consumed in small quantities : Gond, kamarkas, aata, magaz, ghee, almonds, cashew, raisins, saunth, sugar, makhane (foxnuts) . . This is also made and had in winters due to its warming properties. Do try 😊
Recently I was invited for the August Moon Festival that is currently being celebrated at @tajlandsend’s Ming Yang till 15th September. Traditionally a harvest festival it is believed to usher in an auspicious phase for the Chinese masses. 🇨🇳 . . Although the menu offers a wide variety of Sichuan and Cantonese cuisine for both vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike, what stood out for me was the Cantonese style flat rice noodles with stir fried eggplant and potato. This dish sang to me and I’d go back just for this again, and again. 🍜 . . Chef Joel told me that the stir fried eggplant and potato accidentally found its way into this menu, as one day they discovered that the new Executive Chef of Ming Yang - Chef Jinli Ma, had made this dish for his lunch and others happened to taste it and loved it. Well, talk about accidents in kitchen...or the chance discoveries! 💕
Yesterday was Thiru Onam, which I’ve been told is the most important day of Onam as it’s believed that it is then that King Mahabali is said to visit people’s homes. Hence, the elaborate pookalams and the feast that is called Onam sadya/Onasadya. The beauty of Onam is that it is celebrated across Kerala irrespective of religion with faith, love and food at its centre. 🙏🏼🌸 . . Every year I indulge in Onasadya wholeheartedly and this time I thought of checking out Dakshin Coastal at @itcmaratha for their Onam spread. It’s been one of my favourite restaurants in the city where I get to taste not just good food, but also have enriching conversations with the chefs about the fare. Honestly, that makes my experience complete. ☺️ . . Here’s what we had: sambaram (chaas), kaaya varuthatu, shakkara upperi, pulinji, poppadam, pazham, vadukappul, manga currey, parappu vadai, adai, paniyaram, pyaru thovaran, kootu curry, avial, olan, kalan, erussery, beans mezzuku peratti, parappu thalichathu and pal adai and parippu pradhaman 🌴 . . This was one of the best sadyas I’ve had, but what I did miss in this experience was getting my hands dirty like I would anywhere else! 🙃😋
Pindi cholle are made often in our households. They’re different from the normal cholle as they’re the same size as the kala chana. We don’t make it in Mumbai much as this variety isn’t easy to find and most people serving pindi cholle here don’t even know why it’s called that and how it’s different from the normal cholle. As far as I recollect, my Dadi told me that these were a speciality of Rawalpindi, hence the word pindi. The preparation is usually dry or semi dry and it can be eaten with bhature, kulche, paratha or even garam roti. In fact, these are easier to make than the regular chana. Want to know how? Here’s the recipe: Cholle soaked overnight -½ Kg Freshly powdered coriander seeds -8 tsp Freshly roasted jeera powder- 2 tsp Anardana-8 tsp Kasuri methi-1 tbsp Salt To taste Oil-5 tbsp Method: 1. In a pan add the boiled cholle and then add all dry masalas into the boiled cholle 2. Heat oil in a separate pan and than pour it over the cholle and mix well. 3. Your dish is ready to be served!
Give me rain, give me a platter full of sweets-savouries and give me tea...and we’re good to go! 💕☕️ . . A few days back @thewestinmumbai launched its new al fresco lounge at Prego, where they’ve teamed up with the premium tea brand - Te-a-me, to bring some exotic blends to the city. The chefs are Prego had curated a delectable high tea menu to go with it. I’d personally recommend the cold brew fruit teas and the kashmiri kehwa by Te-a-me. I honestly love spaces where one can just relax, unwind and be away for a while from the monotony of this city, and this place does just that. I can see myself visiting this often for my #Solitarymeals with a book in hand 📖☕️ . . Glad to have something like this in the neighbourhood. Love the relaxed and chic ambience of this lounge nestled in the greens of the luxury property. 🌴🌴
I learnt to make this besan bhindi from one of our househelps, during Navratris when we abstain from using onion and garlic in our food. She said that she learnt it from a lady in the house she used to work in earlier. So in many ways, this is passed down recipe, albeit not within the family, but indirectly. I add aloo to it because I really love bhindi with aloo, but you can skip it if you want. Here’s what you need to make this - long slit bhindis, long slit potatoes, mustard oil, salt, turmeric, red chillies, chaat masala and besan (chickpea flour). Here goes the #recipe: Pan fry the bhindi and aloo till partially crisp and cooked. Keep aside. In a kadhai, add 1tbsp mustard oil and add 2tbsp besan and roast it till golden brown. Add all the dry masalas to it and cook for 1 min Add the bhindi and aloo, mix well Cover the kadhai and turn off the gas and let this rest Serve with hot chapatis! Easier than you thought it was, wasn’t it? Let me know how this turns out for you :)
#RePlug: #DelectablePunjab: here’s a dish I learnt to make from my friend Prabjyot. It was a dish I loved ordering in restaurants and always wondered how to make at home because the restaurant versions were always too sweet and oily. I made this for my Baisakhi pop-up last Sunday and it was loved by one and all. Here’s the #recipe: Ingredients 250gms paneer 10 cashews 1 onion Kasuri methi 1 cup peas 1 crushed cardamom Garam masala powder Red chilli powder Coriander powder Salt to taste Sugar Oil Method: In a pan boil water and add the onion and cashews in it till they soften Now in a blender, make a paste out of the boiled onion and cashews In a pan, add oil and heat it Add the onion-cashew paste and cook till the oil begins to separate Add the dry masalas and salt + sugar to taste Keep cooking this paste on a slow flame In the end, add some roasted kasuri methi to finish off the gravy and then add the chunks of paneer Enjoy it with hot rotis!
Festivities and celebrations become even better when you have a family and a group of friends to share it with. Cooked a “sort of festive meal” today for my friend Alisa Yuasa, who is visiting us from Japan. Alisa happens to be my first and only pen friend (remember those?) and we met for the first time five years ago, when she visited me in Mumbai. She’s back in India and this time it’s for my wedding (partially!). Friends have a way to make everything special, innit? ❤️ . . Cooked this meal for her today and also took her on a ganpati pandal tour and we discussed everything from India and Japan, our cultures (differences and similarities), her love for “beendi (bhindi) and roti and chai!”! What you see on the plate: sambhar, idli, paneer bhurjee, besan bhindi aloo, boondi raita, roti and rice! You can see what she thought of the food in my insta stories 💕 . . Happy festivities, lovelies! May all your prayers be answered🙏🏼
वक्रतुंड महाकाय कोटिसूर्यसमप्रभ | निर्विघ्नं कुरु मे देव सर्वकार्येषु सर्वदा || . . It’s that time of the year when festivities and positivity are in the air. That time when it feels that no matter what, things are now about to get better. It’s that time when India comes alive and there’s no dampening that spirit, come rain or snow! . . Personally for me festivities always meant gorging on limitless motichoor laddoos. There’s nothing that spells celebrations for me as these do. From making them to eating them, the whole family would come together and that is the true spirit of a festival! ❤️ . . Today marks the arrival of happy times and I cannot wait for all that’s to come. Here’s praying for health, peace and love for you all ❤️🙏🏼 . . Ganpati Bappa Morya! ❤️
Last night is what I’d call history served on a modern plate. Chef @akshrajjodha, the executive chef of @itc.windsorblr and blue blooded man from the royal family of Rajasthan hosted a dinner at @itcmaratha for a private audience last night. He draws his culinary inspiration from his lineage, of which the roots have spread from royal family of Jodhpur to the royal family of Gujarat. Chef Jodha had smartly broken down the components of a Rajasthani thaali into a nine course dinner, while ensuring that the authenticity of each dish remained intact. The dinner experience was further enhanced by his personal anecdotes about his ancestors and the dishes that were served (more on that on the blog soon, I promise!) . . My favourites were the motiyaan paneer (paneer marinated and crusted with sago, served on a bed of garlic chutney), gatta sangri with gulabi paratha (wild beans encased in besan tarts topped with yoghurt based gravy and served with beetroot paratha), papad roll and bajra roti (spiced potato mixture rolled in papad and smeared in onion gravy), dal baati choorma (this was served in an interesting manner where the baati was filled with panchmel dal and served on a bed of choorma). . . The dinner was a confluence of Indian traditional cooking, history and culinary art and chef Jodha was the grandmaster! Thank you for having me over @itchotels and @itcmaratha. This will be an experience I’ll always cherish. 🙏🏼😊
Kadhi: Ingredients for kadhi: 1l mattha/chaas 3tbsp besan (chickpea flour) 1 cup water 1 inch ginger 5-6 pods Garlic 1 Green chilli Ingredients for tadka: 1 chopped onion 5-6 chopped garlic pods 1tsp methi dana 1tsp mustard seeds 1tsp jeera 1tsp red chillies whole 1tsp Turmeric 1tsp Red chilli powder 4tbsp mustard oil Pinch of asafoetida Salt to taste Ingredients for Pakoda: 4tbsp besan (chickpea flour) tsp Turmeric 1 tsp Chilli powder 1 finely chopped onion 2-3tbsp water Salt to taste Mustard oil to fry Method for pakoda: In a bowl add besan, salt, turmeric, red chilli powder, salt and chopped onion and mix these dry ingredients well Add water to this mixture and whisk it till the lumps from the liquid go away and there is a medium thick consistency In a pan, add mustard oil and bring it to heating point Now, add 1tbsp mixture of the pakodas and fry them till golden brown. Keep this aside Method for Kadhi: In a deep dish, mix the mattha, water and besan till the besan lumps vanish Separately make a ginger, garlic and green chillies paste and then add it to the mattha-besan mix Cook this for minimum 2-3 hours till it achieves a slightly thick consistency Method for tadka: In a pan, add mustard oil and bring it to heating point To this add the jeera, methi dana and let them crackle Add finely chopped garlic, followed by onion and cook till golden brown Add the dry red chillies Later add turmeric, red chilli powder and asafoetida Once cooked, add this tadka to the kadhi and mix
Saw a post by a friend about a recent Chinese dinner that she devoured and it reminded me of this delicious stir fried vegetables in black bean sauce with veg fried rice that I had at @theleelapalacenewdelhi a few days back. This was just the perfect meal after a morning spent with back to back meetings and wedding preps! Funny how our definition of comfort changes with mood na? 😊 . . Making kadhi-chawal for dinner tonight. Want detailed recipe of kadhi? ❤️