almond · cardamom · cheese · condense milk · cottage cheese · dessert · Indian · lime · lime juice · mango · medium · milk · nut · pistachio · rose · rose water · saffron · salt · tropical fruit · Uncategorized

Of nostalgia & adventure – A memorable Ganesh Chaturthi with “Mango Kalakand/ Aam Kalakand”

This year Ganesh Chaturthi was very special and that’s because of so many reasons. Special because it was the first one we celebrated after our wedding, hereby marking a tradition we intend to carry on for years to come. Special because we made our own idol for the occasion and had an absolute blast making it and most importantly because we also got to celebrate it with our friends & neighbors who made up for the absence of our family here with us. My desire to celebrate this at our place stemmed from the reason that this festival has always been very close to heart for my husband. Back at his place, it’s a tradition to celebrate it with fervor and invite all relatives near and dear for a yearly get together and he still cherishes those memories of laughter and frolic. So this year we ushered in Lord Ganesh to our abode. Truly, what better occasion than Ganesh Chaturthi – dedicated to the Vignaharta (destroyer of obstacles) to herald in this entire season of festivities? Our little adv

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A vegetarian’s delight – Quick Paneer Biryani

So…here I am back again! After almost three months and several days of incessant thesis writing and dealing with the nitty-gritty of graduate school, I am finally back to my haven – writing and reliving every bite I have loved to make and savor. Almost after every hiatus – laden with feelings of guilt and anxiety, as I sit to start penning down my thoughts, the familiarity of this blog and its comfort, suddenly makes it all seem ok. Back to my very own safe nook, where everything feels the same regardless of how fast things might have changed in the past few months. Regardless of all that, this long hiatus from the blog, has been one heck of a remarkable journey through a dream I have always had but never really imagined it happening. Sharing my graduation with my parents and loved ones was one of the most fulfilling experiences even though it remained equally paired with the hustle and the craziness that’s a part and parcel of submitting one’s thesis. While that’s another chapter alto

almond · cashew · cashew nut · dairy free · dessert · Indian · medium · nut · ovo vegetarian · rose · rose water · sugar · sweetener · Uncategorized · vegan · vegetarian · water

Unassumingly festive ~Kaju Badam Barfi~

Driven by intense conversations regarding “Barfi” (the Ranbir Kapoor one people!), I couldn’t help but think about the real and the first connotation the word “barfi” has had for me since childhood. In fact, it has also been the only thing I have been thinking for quite a while. Sounds strange??..well might be..but I just couldn’t help but think about the real barfi when that’s the word all over and I am very sure most of you must have lingered on the same too 😉 So with my injury healing quite fairly and with the upcoming Ganesh Utsav, I had been burning to make something new and exciting. It had been a while since I had done something rousing in the kitchen and should I say, I was dying to do so. But to be very frank, I had never thought of making Barfi EVER until last weekend and this was the first time I had even dared to look up recipes to help me make it. No matter how rich and delicious it might taste, this humble sweet had an awful impression of being cumbersome to make. Now si

bay leaves · butter · cardamom · cashew · dessert · ghee · Indian · medium · milk · nut · ovo vegetarian · rice · rose · rose water · saffron · salt · sugar · sweetener · Uncategorized · vegetarian · whipping cream

“Chaula Kheeri” – Back to my comfort zone with my comfort food

What would your realm of comfort be, once you are back home after a long period of absence? Beyond any doubt, I know what mine is! So being back in my haven after a 3 week trip both for work and fun, I knew exactly what I wanted. A brief stint in the kitchen and I got back my dilapidated energy level. Easy and effectively consistent remedy for my home parched soul 😉 Past few weeks have been very hectic with a research trip intermingled with a short outing with friends. The sparse number of posts have been a testimony to that fact. I felt guilty all this while being away from this space all along, while trying my best to focus on the trip at hand. I guess very soon (!!) I will learn how to leave this baby aside for a well deserved break. Soon..or so I hope! My long absence from home entailed that I have been on store bought/ restaurant bought food for the past 3 weeks. That's quite a bit for me to take. So by the end of the trip, I was literally dreaming about home-cooked simple meals

cardamom · cheese · citrus · condense milk · dessert · Indian · lemon · malai · medium · milk · ovo vegetarian · rose · rose water · saffron · sugar · sweetener · Uncategorized · vegetarian

Sinfully Indulgent – Ras Malai

The ecstasy of being able to whip up a dessert knows no bounds especially when it’s something that’s always been intriguing and delightful-both exactly at the same time. By now, all of you might have guessed that I am endowed with one big sweet tooth.I admit to this felony but well it’s a win-win situation for all of us over here. I get to decipher a fascinating dessert and eat it (!!!) while you get the recipe (and the secrets as well)! Works very very well ! To ease you into this, Ras malai is best described as light, spongy, cheese dumplings soaked in creamy,thick, sweetened and flavored milk. It tastes very similar to Tres Leche but well no real comparison, just an idea for those who like to imagine the taste before they try the recipe. Milk-based sweets are quite popular in the eastern state of Odissa. Ras Malai is one among the numerous such desserts that actually seems to me, as the love-child of rosugulla (sweetened cheese dumpling) and rabdi (thickened and flavored milk). This

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Of Gulab Jamuns and new beginnings

The advent of spring and the end of the winter season in India is heralded by the festival of colors, Holi. In my years of having lived here in the US I have longed and missed the bonhomie that trademarks this spring festival. Uncle, aunts, distant cousins and relatives come together to mark the beginning of spring and gorge on the delicious spread of the scrumptious dishes which would be incomplete without a wide range of sweets and snacks. I have missed all of that these years until this time when a group of friends came up with the idea of a potluck lunch that would then be followed by applying “tikkas”(What happened later is completely another story in itself! ). While thinking of something to contribute, Gulab Jamun popped straight at me. Now, here goes the story! Gulab Jamuns have always always been one of my most favorite-“est” of desserts. A few months back one of my friends suggested to try making Gulab Jamuns. I was supremely excited to even know that it could be “prepared” a