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Saturday, November 19, 2011

Apple Tea

Apple Tea

Do you often discard apple peels?

Pour boiling water over the peels.
Enjoy a cuppa! 

Its delicious and way better than the shop bought dehydrated apple tea .

Tulips From My Garden!

These are Tulips from my garden. They are such a pleasure to grow. Plant them in November. No need to dig the bulbs out after flowering season.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Yogurt Dip

Serve with fresh vegetable sticks e.g; carrots,celery,cucumber, cauliflower,broccoli,red radishes,paprika/capsicum (red,yellow, green)
with chips
as filling/spread for Pita or sandwiches.

500 ml Yogurt
1/2 white or red onion finely chopped
1/2 Tomato finely chopped
Fresh Coriander Finely chopped 1 tablespoon
Green chilly 1 or 2 (to your taste)finely chopped or pounded

The Simplest way

Add all the ingredients to the yogurt and fold in.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Plain Kadhi

This is a typical Gujarati dish. Delicious even with plain rice.


1) Yoghurt 250 ml.
2) Cumin (jeera) 1 tsp.
3) Vegetable oil 1 tbsp.
4) Few Curry leaves/Limda (optional)
5) 1/2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and pounded or grated (optional)
6) 1 Green chilly washed and slit lengthwise (optional)
7) salt to taste
8) 1 to 2 tbsp gram flour/besan
9) Chopped coriander 1 tbsp. (optional)
10) 300-400 ml. water

1) Blend the yoghurt,Water and gram flour with a hand mixer. (Alternatively, add half the water,blend with a whisk,add rest of
the water)
2) In a deep pan , add the oil on low heat.
3) Add cumin. Let it crackle or wait till it changes colour.
4) Add chilli and curry leaves.
5) Add the blended mix.
6) Increase the heat and keep stirring till it comes to a boil.
7) Add salt+ginger
8) Boil on lower heat for further 7 to 10 minutes.
9) Sprinkle coriander and serve.

Please refer to posts with variations.


Raita is one of the simplest accompaniments to prepare.

It can be served as a dip with chips, crackers or melba toasts.

For healthier option, it can also be served with assorted raw vegetables like carrots, cucumber, cauliflower,broccoli,celery sticks,radish


1) Yoghurt 250 ml.
2) Cucumber 1/2 (washed,grated)
3) salt to taste
4) green chilly 1 ( washed and finely chopped)
5) Cumin powder or Sandwich masaala or Chaat masaala 1/2 tsp.
6) Coriander 1 tbsp. (rinsed and chopped finely) (optional)


1) In a bowl, whisk the yoghurt or beat it with a fork to make it smooth.
2) Add rest of the ingredients and mix well.
3) Keep refrigerated until serving.


You can add :

Chopped tomatoes
Chopped radish
Instead of cucumber, add grated carrots
Instead of coriander, add finely chopped mint.

Corn Pulav

This is a very basic, all in one pan recipe. I hope the simplicity of this recipe will encourage my very busy University student friends and working youngsters to eat more at home .

By optional in most of my recipes, I mean to convey, if you have it, use it. If not, no need to go to especially buy it.Go right ahead and cook and omit what you don't have.

Serve with plain yoghurt,raita, kadhi,choley or rajma

Ingredients: Serves 2 (if its just pulao for a meal)

1) 1 tea cup Basmati rice = 1/2 mug
2) 1 can or eqivalent amount frozen corn
3) 1 tsp Cumin seeds (jeeru)
4) 1/2 tsp. Turmeric powder (haldi)
5) 1/2 tsp. red chilli powder
6) salt to taste
7) 2 tea cups boiling water ( double the amount of rice)
8) 2 tbsp. Vegetable oil
9) 1 or 2 slit green chilli (optional)
10) 1/2 tea cup washed chopped kothmir(optional)
11) Few Curry leaves/ limda/ kadhi patta (optional)
12) Few cloves chopped garlic(optional)

1 chopped onion
1 chopped tomato
few cubes frozen spinach (no need to thaw. Just rinse to wash off ice crystals) (then u can omit kothmir)


Wash rice few times with cold water. Soak in water.
In a pan , add 2-3 tbsp oil
Add jeera.wait till it crackles or changes colour.
Add chopped onion. fry for 1-2 minues
Add garlic.stir.
Add limda+green chillies. stir for few seconds.
Add haldi. stir.
Drain off water from the rice in a seive.
Add rice to the pan. stir. let it fry for a minute or two
Add salt+chilli powder+ tomatoes+spinach. stir.

Add water.

Add corn. stir.

Bring it to a boil.

Cover with a lid and simmer till rice is cooked. (about 15-20 mins. or till water is absorbed.

Switch off the heat and let it sit covered for 10 minutes before serving.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Sambhar Simplified with yellow mung dal

Traditional Sambhar is prepared with Tuvar dal which takes much longer to cook than Mung dal.
Mung dal can be cooked in a pan, avoiding the much dreaded pressure cooker generally used by moms in an Indian kitchen!

Ingredients: (2-3 servings)

1/2 cup (yellow) mung dal ( Best is to first soak the dal and while you are doing the rest,it has time to soak
or,wash+soak in the morning before leaving for work.)
2 medium tomatoes (chopped)
mustard seeds (rai) 1 tsp
haldi 1/2 tsp
hing a pinch
Limda (few - if you have, rinsed)
sambhar powder 2-3 tsp ( more if you want spicier)
oil 2 Tbsp.
salt to taste
lemon juice
kothmir (optional) washed and chopped

In a large pan, add oil.
Medium heat
Add mustard,limda (do vaghar)
add onions
stir till it softens
add hing,haldi and sambhar powder
add tomatoes,stir, cover and cook till softened
add the dal
add 2-3 cups boiling water
cook until dal softens(gets cooked)

Add salt to taste
add lemon juice to taste

sprinkle kothmir

Sunday, March 20, 2011


Lentils and beans are the source of protein in a vegetarian diet.
Lentils are very easy to cook.
Normally served as accompaniments to rice or Indian flatbreads, on a cold evening, you can enjoy it instead of soup too.


1 cup green or yellow gram (moong dal)
2 tbsp vegetable/olive oil
1 large onion - finely chopped
1 green chilli -sliced
1/2 tsp chilli powder (or to taste)
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp grated ginger (optional)
2 cloves of garlic - pounded (optional)
1 tomato - chopped
1 tbsp chopped coriander (optional)
salt to taste
few slices of lemon


Wash and soak gram for 1/2 hour to a couple of hours. ( In case there is no time to soak, wash it and go will just take a bit longer to cook)

Cook in a large pot with 3 cups of water. Bring it to a boil. Then continue to cook on a low heat, covered, until softened. Add more water if necessary.

Heat oil in a small pan. Add cumin seeds . When they splutter, add onions, green chilli and turmeric.
Stir until onions soften.
Add garlic + ginger
Stir again.
Add tomatoes. Stir and then add chilli powder.
stir well , cover and let it cook for a minute or two on low heat.

Add it to the cooked dal. Mix well.

Continue to cook for a few more minutes.

Add salt to taste.

Sprinkle coriander.

Sqeeze lemon to your taste.

How to make Paneer

Paneer is readily available in Indian grocery stores.
Making paneer at home is easy and gives you the choice of using semi - skimmed milk.
Also, its much cheaper to make your own Paneer than buy off the shelf.

Milk ( whole,semi-skimmed or skimmed) - 1 litre
white vinegar / lemon juice - or yoghurt  3 tbsps


In a large pot, bring the milk to a boil while stirring occasionally so it doesn't get stuck to the bottom of the pan.

When it boils, lower the heat to a minimum and add vinegar or lemon juice little by little , stirring simultaneously until milk just curdles.

Switch off the heat.

Pour into a colander lined with a kitchen towel or a muslin cloth or just any clean cotton cloth.

Wash the fresh paneer with cold water to remove residues of the vinegar or lemon.

Even out the paneer in the cloth and place weight on it (I usually use the pot I used to boil the milk filled with water)

After 15 minutes or longer , you can cut the paneer in to cubes while still in the cloth and then gently remove the pieces and place in box or on a plate.

This fresh paneer can be used to make matar-paneer, paalak-paneer,kofta , paneer parathas ,rasgullas,sandesh etc.