Tag Archives: Food

#CustardApple #HomeGrown #KitchenGarden #FruitLove #Seethaphal

Homegrown custard apple

Homegrown custard apple

Not just a fruit but king of fruits for my MIL. My otherwise authorotative, disciplined MIL becomes like a little girl in our garden. We have a lot of other fruits as well but her first love is Custard Apple. It’s literally her fruit of labour. Or may be my FIL’s expression of love for planting that tree years back, because he can’t have a single one owing to his sugar and MIL can’t stop having them all.

Winters are here and each morning she religiously goes to the backyard and plucks the ripe ones. She risks her back, neck, knee and what not to get the fruits. Our tenants on the ground floor are strictly not allowed to go near that particular tree. The other day she took help of our maid to pluck some top ones, and when they both came up she had to quickly cook a story to convey her not to go there when alone so as to save her fruits from being stolen. I was laughing inside knowing that she is very generous when it comes to giving food/ fruits/ money any other stuff to her. She sure loves her seethaphals.

So the story doesn’t end there, she also hides them in a kind of secretly kept cardboard box so they are fully riped before eating. And believe the fruits of our garden seem to be filled with sugar. I like them too but seeing her love for them I kind of let her eat them all :). People often associate custard apples with cold, she even has her strategy of not catching cold while eating them to your heart’s content. She sure doesn’t.

So if you love them and are not able to eat them due to the fear of catching cold here is Bunny’s dadi ka nuskha:

1. Don’t keep them in fridge, even if you do take it out hours before you consume them.
2. Eat with a spoon, don’t touch the actual pulp with hands.
3. Do not wash your hands or have water atleast for half an hour post eating them.

Yumminess Around

I can’t believe a to z blogging challenge is already towards its last two days. I am so proud of myself for not missing a single day, I have missed the timings I wanted to post but not any day. And how can I complete a challenge without doing a Food post. In recent months our eating out has reduced and my love for home cooked meals and all things Indian has increased manifolds. So most of the pictures would be about Shuddh Desi Khana :). Thanks TP for the reminder !!!

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This was my version of Poori Bhaji on a leisure winter Sunday afternoon. The alu curry was cooked bengali style, and I can’t tell you how tasty it turned out to be. This blog – http://www.vegrecipesofindia.com/ is turning out to be my new favorite for everyday vegetarian cooking. The style is simple, healthy and with very clear instructions.

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Veg cutlets/kebabs in breakfast with almost zero oil, also a tasty way to finish the left over veggies in your fridge.

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Instant Sooji Uttapam, I know the picture doesn’t do justice in this case. I have tried many versions of this, but this one time it turned out to be really yum – crisp, healthy and fast :).

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That is to say the summers have started. And salads have become a regular during meal times. So did you check my salad platter :P.

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TBH’s version of banana milkshake to surprise me one hot afternoon. Did you see how he tried to put hearts with rooh afza? Not bad I would say 😛

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Summers for me are for rice meals along with papad, achar, dahi and any dry veggie :). This was with alu-baigan.

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That’s ‘Yukta-ahar’, fancy name to a north Indian thali in a shudd veg resturant in South Delhi – Sattvik. We went there last Sunday. It was tasty beyond words and surprisingly everything single dish was awesome. Btw did I tell you my new found love for thalis? I am consuming thalis like crazy wherever I am going these days. I even tried a south Indian meal/thali over dosa twice in our favorite south Indian restaurant in Delhi. That says enough.

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This was this Sunday, I finally ordered Rava Onion Dosa, after multiple trips of consuming thalis :P. If you love South Indian and in Delhi, you have to visit Sarvana at Janpath. They have their branches world over but this one is beyond world, specially try having breakfast there.

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This was again in Sattvik, two non alcoholic but slurp worthy beverages. Orange one is cranberry + pineapple. Green is cuccumber based. Great summer choices. And I am planning to try mock tails/shakes at home this summers, all recipes and suggestions are welcomed here.

P.S. Considering the length of this post, I am leaving the baking behind.

To end this post, what better to post something that adorns our dining area and something we truly believe in.

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Happiness Is

I was feeling relatively low today for some no reason at all. Just one of those morning blues I would say. That’s when I decided to write about Happiness and random things that make me happy to simply cheer myself up, and while cooking today’s lunch, I started thinking things I would write about and you won’t believe even thinking made me happier.  I am in a much better mood now. See how our mind works. So here is a list of few random things that makes me happy. Happiness Is

  • When TBH exactly knows what I am feeling – like no mood to cook, mood to go out for a movie, mood to eat an ice-cream, to get a new foot wear, to just sleep, sit or talk. It never stops to amaze me that how much he knows me in and out in our 2+years of relationship. I just love him for that.
  • Waking up to TBH’s teaJ. He has been making the morning tea since last two weeks because he gets up much before me and the tea pushes me to come out of bed. Haven’t I already told that he is just super awesome husband?
  • Super elated sister on the other side of the phone – sharing random happenings of her life.
  • Curry leaves + curd combo in every possible way – aloo raita, cucumber raita, curd rice, plain curd with tadka etc etc.
  • My new found love – fruits and everything to do with them, fresh bowl as a snack, juices, shakes, smoothies, fruit lassis – just about everything.
  • Shudh desi khana – this is also new but I am not able to get enough of it. All rice combos, all vegetables, everything to do with Indian khana. I was never someone who would eat roti when eating out but now I only look for Indian options.
  • Cold showers in summers.
  • Clean kitchen top. Dustfree house. Well stocked fridge.
  • That extra squeeze of lemon in everything you eat.
  • Random hugs and kisses from TBH.
  • Talking to both my mommies (Mine and MIL). It always cheers me up. They are two super awesome moms.
  • Talking movies with Papa. That’s the only topic that makes us exceed our one minute call time: P.
  • Afternoon nap with TBH on his laptop besides me.
  • Finishing tasks on deadline – home cleaning, personal projects, professional initiatives, shopping etc.
  • Baking and surprising a new mom with the super yummy cake.
  • Clean bathrooms with everything at proper place.
  • Reading regularly and finishing books after books from the reading list.
  • Catching up back to back good films in the theatre.
  • Reading some amazing blogs out there.
  • Walking with TBH.
  • TBH cancelling all work travel plans to be with me. 
  • Rewatching your bachpan ke photos – the sister uploaded a lot of our childhood pictures on fb and re-watching them again and again gives me immense joy.
  • When the radio plays your favorite song.
  • Being able to freshen up right in the morning, this one thing sets my whole day in a positive note. This is so evident that day before yesterday my dad whatsapped me this article – http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/opinion/edit-page/You-gotta-go-gotta-go/articleshow/33404651.cms
  • Writing in Hindi after a long long time, that too a six page speech for my MIL to be delivered in an event and getting appreciated for it. 

So the list can just go on :). There is lot to be happy about, and when next I am in low mood, I will probably just come here and read this again:). 

 

 

Food and Marriage

In the last post I mentioned that a couple (H &S) were visiting us. The Husband (H) is TBH’s friend for almost 15 years and they are like brothers; spouses at times and also business partners in real life. H & S married just two months after our wedding almost two years back. The guys were out for a meeting and S and I got some time to catch up alone. While having lunch S mentioned how the food cooked by me reminded her of her maiden home/mom cooked food. She said it has been long time since she had proper man ka khana.

I am pretty aware of the fact that H’s food habit are very different from others. TBH and I have discussed it many a times. His food habits are not only different but unhealthy in all possible ways.

Few of his quirky habits which runs in his household:

  • He wants ghee with almost everything. He can actually drink ghee.
  • He can’t eat any meal without sev (namkeen).
  • He eats very spicy food all the time.
  • He doesn’t like/eat fruits.
  • He is not at all fond of any other cuisine than Indian.
  • He eats dinner really late at night.
  • Once during their latest visit, he prepared lunch for all of us and used oil which I manage to use for a week.

How it is different from S’s original habits.

  • S has been raised up in a household where healthy food comes over anything else.
  • She loves fruits/raw vegetables.
  • She loves simple food with less oil/spices
  • She can’t stand sev with the main meal
  • She loves Chinese

Their Set up

During their early days of marriage S was nearly shocked to see how the food is prepared in H’s household. As a background, they both live together with H’s parents. She used to eat less than her normal diet because of totally different style of cooking and also because of kind of vegetables being bought which were different from her choice/habit.

She was encouraged to cook and prepare Chinese too as she loves it, she did that only to realize now there are three people on the table who are not able to eat properly. She got back to their cooking style, trying to put less oil/spices to every body’s benefit whenever possible.

She was telling all this to me and saying now its effecting her health to an extent, considering her diet has reduced to a large extent. I couldn’t agree more, in fact I also believe how food plays major role in your moods and general energy levels. I was like, ‘now your newly married/ shyness phase is over, you can absolutely voice your liking and prepare separate food for yourself at least on some days’. She said she definitely can and everybody will understand but it is too much of an effort for her with a nearly 9 to 9 job.

She was true, and I felt sorry for her. Even I felt how difficult it would be for her. This time during their trip I coaxed everybody to go to a Chinese restaurant as S likes it so much and realized H really ate very less and is not experimental at all. It’s disheartening to be sharing a table and seeing someone else not eating to his/her heart’s content. I was wondering that even when H would take S to her favorite food places, he would probably ask her to prepare something or would help himself once they enter home and as much as I know S, she would hate that and would skip the eat-out plan altogether.

This isn’t just S & H story, it must be true for so many couples at so many different levels. Though I do believe their case is a bit extreme and there are a very few possibilities of change.

I have similar story to share about another friend. It is not about the style this time, it’s about quantity. This friend of mine belongs to a big Indian joint family with all the ladies representing a different state. Abundance of choice is how the food at her place is described, I was a regular at her home, before her marriage, rightfully asking for my favorite food and joining any of her cousins on the table. But when I first visited her in law’s place or her place after marriage, I was taken aback. ‘Calculated food’ is their way. Less quantity, minimal wastage; it is okay and appreciated too, but so much so that the guest feel uncomfortable and eats less so as to not to spoil their daily/weekly or for that matter monthly calculations. She was reprimanded if any left overs accumulate in the fridge. Needless to say that was my last visit to her place.

This is such an understated fact in the marriage scenario. Food should be discussed in length before marriage. It is such an integral part of lives for people like us, that I dunno how I would have managed if I had to face something similar situation a daily basis. And unfortunately in most scenarios it is the girl making compromises/adjustments specially if living in a joint family scenario.

What do you have to say on this? What did you face when you got married? Did you had to adjust or not? Who adjusted in your relationship? How do you manage the differences on day to day basis? Basically how did you cope up with the different food choices?

I can only say I am very lucky in this regard. TBH and I have a lot of similarities, though we are two totally different individual but sometimes we are surprised with the kind of same habits/choices we have specially as regard to food. Or maybe we both are very experimental and not at all fussy eaters so probably life is easier this way. But I swear our Moms are more similar than us :P. That’s for another story btw.

The one with various Food Updates

Gujarati Khandvi

Homemade Khandvi

I made this Khandvi on Monday Morning for breakfast. I was too lazy to do the proper garnishing but I am in forever love with Khandvi and finally I got the perfect proportions from this food blog: http://www.rakskitchen.net/2013/11/khandvi-recipe-indian-snack-recipes.html

Garlic Roles

Pull apart Garlic roles

20131120_202709These are Garlic Roles I tried yesterday night for the first time and they turned out to be just great. Major hit on my fb profile and at home. Best part is I can alter the filling/flavours according to my liking. Teamed up with some healthy pasta for dinner. Recipe source: http://www.cookingandme.com/2010/11/garlic-pull-apart-rolls-recipe-step-by.html

Sweet Corn Soup

Sweet Corn SouP

This is the quick Maggie one but I am in love with my Soup cups. And this winters I am gonna try as many soups as possible.

Veg Noodles and Manchurian

The past weekend was all about cooking in full swing, made Chinese – my version of noodles and Manchurian. The Manchurian were a delight even to me. The husband was also beaming with happiness. Sorry for the sad color of the gravy, at the last moment I realized I was running out of Soya Sauce.

Home Made Pizza from Scratch

Home Made Pizza from Scratch

Was a healthy version with less/no cheese and the base was of whole wheat floor. You would what’s a Pizza wihtout cheese, but when you have some dozen extra kgs hanging on your body, that’s what pizza becomes. It tasted yum without doubt. Reference Source: http://www.cookingandme.com/2013/06/quick-easy-pizza-crust-recipe-30-min.html

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These were all the veggies that went into a kind of Pulao that I picked from my MIL. She makes a super tasty spicy pulao and I tried it this time. It was such a hit that during Diwali break at my in – laws I made it thrice in just ten days. I forgot to click the pic of the end product :(.

Rajma - Chawal

Rajma – Chawal

An all time favorite with both of us specially in winters 🙂

Eggless Chocolate Cake

Eggless Chocolate Cake

Made this for two of my favorite cousins when they were visiting me sometime in June, this was for their special achievements and making us super proud. The elder one got into IIM – L and the younger one into BITS – Pilani :). Recipe from another of my favorite blogger: http://hungryandexcited.com/blog/2012/09/eggless-butterless-chocolate-cake/ and I cant wait to go to Goa sometime soon and taste her baking goodies.

I had some more pictures to post but the last one reminds me that I am getting super late in baking a special something today :). Will let you know how it went.