Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Delhi is famous for its variety of Chaats. N I really freak out on chaats. The variations are endless & the result is always - mouth watering, lip smacking good!! Nothing to beat the tangy, sweet, spicy - all in one flavors tingling your taste buds. Here's what I made up with whatever was at home

The following recipe serves (2. I used whatever I had at home & innovated the following.

Ing -
10/12 pcs of Paapdi - use the whole ones
1/2 cup - corriander chutney
1/4 cup - sweet tamarind chutney
1/2 cup - thick curd
1 tbspn - roasted & ground cumin powder
1 tspn - chaat masala
1 tspn - red chilli powder (optional)
4 tbspn - raita boondi (optional)

Separately -
2 boiled potatoes - big ones (mash them well)
some corriander leaves - washed & chopped finely
2 green chillies - washed & chopped finely
salt to taste
a pinch of garam masala

Mix all the above well & keep separately.


In a dish spread out the paapdi separately.
Top it with the potato mixture - press some onto the paapdi
Using a spoon cover the aloo with some curd, then top with sweet tamarind chutney, then with green chutney & finally with more curd.
Sprinkle the cumin powder, chaat masala & the boondi.

Add a dash of green chutney & tamarind chutney all over.

ENJOY. We both were so impressed by this chaat that we made a 2nd serving n skipped dinner!!


We loose track of being with God once hardships come our way. We are critical & we loose hope. Our faith is shaken....but the below article really helped me gather up things & once again nudge my spirit to not let go off God's strong hands. I know that he is there with me all the time, n I have to believe it!! Have a nice day all of you.

KEEP TRAINING - by Gail Rodgers

Challenges come to all of us. Sometimes they can feel overwhelming. When they do our tendency is often to become discouraged in our faith. My friend called today. She is in the middle of some very stretching circumstances. Her voice cracked as she asked, "Why would God let us go all the way down this road only to close the door now?" She was in a tough and confusing spot. Together we prayed that God would reveal the next step to her. And He will. We both know His track record in our lives. He can be depended upon.

When life is tiring and confusing it's easy to loose hope in God's ability to work on our behalf. We can become weary and not bother picking up our Bible to hear what His Spirit has to say to us. We can cease to pray, feeling that God isn't hearing us anyway.

God knows our nature is to fall away when times are hard and we are confused. He knows we will tend to neglect His Word. He reminds us not to.

"Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil" (Hebrews 5:13 & 14).

Righteousness means choosing a "Yes Lord" attitude in all of life. Spiritual discernment grows as we live in the mature state of being able to say ...
"Yes Lord" I will trust You, even in the dark.
"Yes Lord" I will believe Your word, even when I feel confused.
"Yes Lord" I will obey what I know You are asking me to do.
"Yes Lord" I will continue to commit my every step to You.
"Yes Lord" I will continue to grow in spiritual understanding.

Hard circumstances in life can be times of equipping. The roots of a mighty tree must go deep so it will be grounded when the fierce winds blow.

During times of deep challenge make a choice to trust God. Make a decision to allow God to equip you with spiritual understanding and wisdom for your next step.

Stay disciplined. Keep equipped by standing on the promises of His word. Keep the door of your heart open with an invitation to Him to lead you every step of the crooked way.

He will build a track record in your life that will secure you in your faith. He is faithful. Be determined to continue to equip yourself with prayer and His word.

Though circumstances and people may disappoint you, God never will. His strength will hold your hand and your heart through those times when your world is shaken.

~Dear Heavenly Father,
Help me, during times of uncertainty, not to fall away from You and Your word. Help me to keep a disciplined spirit and continue to equip myself with Your promises and an open heart for You to be at work, even in the midst of confusion. Thank you for Your Holy Spirit who will help me grow in spiritual understanding. In Jesus' name I pray, amen.

Sunday, November 18, 2007


The world chocolate itself transports some of us into a different world alltogether. At least it does that to me. A few other things in life can compare to the feeling of a chocolate melting in your mouth........mmmmmmmm - yes that's exactly how I go. I can close my eyes & just be somewhere different altogether when I am having a chocolate. I dont know how many of you share such sentiments with me, or maybe you think I am crazy....but really good chocolates do that to me. I love a whole brick of LINDT, n mind you its the biggest one I prefer. Unfortunately, now I dont have my brother abroad who always brought back a few bricks whenever he came to Delhi, or infact he knew I loved them soooo much that he even managed to send at least one through somebody coming down to India!!! I miss him being abroad sooooo very, very much. N neither do we both travel abroad often to pick up a few. In Delhi, I just find the smallest bars n that too not at many stores, n the small bars dont give me that sort of a kick as that big one did!!!!

Now let me not get carried away.......I guess I will have to wait for someone to have pity on poor me, ........n I dont know when.

I have been wanting to try making some chocolate at home, but never was too serious about it, till the pretty Zlamushka of ZLAMUSHKA'S SPICY KITCHEN announced her Event of "A SPOONFUL OF CHRISTMAS".

Though the result was not half as good as any store brought chocolate, but I am contriuting the same, with load of love & good wishes to her for the event.

1/2 cup - cocoa powder
1 cup - milk
2 cups - sugar
1 tbspn - vanilla essence
4 tbspn - melted butter (white)
1/4 cup - red wine
1 tspn - cofee powder (Nescafe)
1/2 cup - toasted almonds - crushed coarsely or better still chopped to small pcs.

Method -
In a heavy bottomed pan (preferably a big one), mix the milk, sugar, cofee & cocoa powder.
On low flame melt the sugar while stirring. When everything has blended well increase the flame & let it come to a boil, stirring all the while.
Now leave the mixture on low flame & let cook.
Do the the cold water test,i.e., when a drop of the mixture is put into cold water, it should retain shape.
When this happens, remove from flame & add the vanilla essense & butter & beat in one direction for about 3/4 minutes.
Add the almonds & mix well.
Pour into greased moulds or on a greased cookie sheet & let cool.

I used a plastic chocolate mould sheet for the shell shaped chocolates & used a ice tray for the heart shaped ones.

Now for the results.

I found them way too sweet, n the next time (if there is one!!)I shall be adding only 1-1/2 cup sugar. I was also not satisfied with the texture of the chocolate. It was not as creamy as the readymade chocolates. I personally felt that they were not half as good as what the market chcolates are. My husband was very pleased with the chocolates. He loved the wine flavor. My MIL too was very, very happy.

If there is anybody who has experience in making chocolates, or has some good chocolate recipes, please do give me some suggestions.

Meanwhile, Zlamushka this is for you...............MERRY CHRISTMAS

Friday, November 16, 2007


Mushroom is one of my favorite veggies - or should I say fungus - sounds so very inedible, right?? My grandma always used to say that we shouldnt eat mushrooms coz they are are something grown out of something to do with snakes!! N we really used to be very when have a mind of our own, I really laugh at those days & her thoughts - LOL!!!! Well I dont know what she would say if she knows that I am a big fan of mushrooms..hmmmmmm. Here's my recipe for mushroom kurma

Ing -
200 gms - mushrooms (I have seen just one variety in India - the white ones with a brownish-black interiors)
a handfulf - peas
4 tbspn of chopped methi leaves
50 gms - khoya
100 gms - paneer
2 medium onions and a big tomatoe, and 3/4 flakes of garlic - pureed finely
1 tspn - red chilli powder
1 tspn - garam masala powder
1 tspn - haldi / turmeric pwoder
1/4 tspn - sugar
2 tspn - corriander powder

Method -
In a kadai, heat some oil & add the puree.
Fry till the oil separates & the raw taste goes
Add all the masalas (except sugar) & fry till done.
Grate the khoya & add to the masala. Fry well.
Slice mushrooms very thinly & add to the masala along with the peas.
Add 1/2 a cup of water & place the lid and cook till the peas are done.
Now cut the paneer into small cubes or you can crumble them with your hands & add it to the kadai, at this stage also add the methi leaves.
Mix well & close the lid.
Cook till you get a desired thickness of the curry.
If you want more gravy add some water.
Lastly add the sugar & mix well

Serve with chappatis or as a side dish with rice.

Thursday, November 15, 2007


With MIL not at home for two days (she is visiting her sister), n lazy me so being used to coming home to a prepared meal.......was in no mood to do anything but cook the simplest of food. Something which was effortless....... so here goes my recipe. I am also contributing the same to the lovely SRA of WHEN MY SOUP CAME ALIVE, who is hosting the Event of Grindless Gravies. Here you go Sra....this is for you!!!

Ing -
4 big potatoes
1 tbspn - jeera / cumin seeds
4/5 flakes of garlic
a big pinch of asofetida / hing
1 small - onion
3/4 green chillies
1 tspn - garam masala powder
2 tspn - dhaniya / corriander powder
1 tspn - kasoori methi
1/2 a lime juice
salt as per taste

Method -
Boil the potatoes till they are more than cooked - they should crumble to the touch.
In a kadai, add some oil, n when hot add the jeera.
Grate the garlic right into the oil (be careful of the sputtering)
when the garlic turns brown, add thinly sliced onions.
Let fry till they start browning.

Add the slit green chillies, the haldi & mix well
Now add the rest of the masalas & fry well.
Add two cups of water & bring to boil
Now use your hands to crumble the potatoes right into boiling water.
Mix well & let boil for about 3/4 minutes.
Stir well in between, mashing some more potatoes here n there, right into the gravy.
The result will be a thick, spicy n chatpata gravy.
Top it off with the lime juice & the kasoori methi.

Had it with rice & some leftover mushroom kurma - recipe for which will be posted ASAP.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


Laddus are a good, especially if they are packed with nutrition of almonds and moong daal. I am not too very fond of Indian sweets, but I really loved this laddu my MIL made. I am sharing the recipe with all of you, that's because I have such a biiiiiiig heart!!! No, No just kidding, its because I love you all so much.

Ing -
250 gms - moong daal atta
4 tbspn - ghee
200 gms - powdered sugar
5/6 cardamoms - powdered
1/2 cup - coarsely crushed almonds

Method -
Fry the atta in the ghee till it turns golden brown in colour. Keep stirring in between.
Close the flame & add the powdered sugar, cardamom powder & almonds
Now let the mixture cool just enough that you can bind them into laddus.

There you are - yummy laddus are ready to be gobbled up!!!


Sorry Girls - my fault. Even though I did make MIL tell me how to make Moong Daal Atta, I forgot to post the same. My it goes

Take about 1/2 kg split green moong (when I go home I shall be posting a pic of that daal too, so that there is no confusion at all). Dry roast it in a kadai, stirring continuously, for about 10 minutes.
Let it cool & then grind it into a fine powder in the grinder.
Seive & use it as atta!!


I saw this one early in the morning & thought I'd share it with all of you. These are small things we often forget & leave God our creator way too far behind, making our own decisions & not asking for his support. If we let him rule our lives, I am sure nothing can go wrong. I know it takes time to sink in.....

KEEP ALERT - by Gail Rodgers

Many of you write and share your stories of personal worlds that are challenging and even desperate at times. We know many are shaken up by circumstances in your lives and homes. We are all shaken by the unrest in our world.

Even when life is going smoothly and we are in a good space, we often share a sense of instability as we look at life around us.

Throughout the whole book of Hebrews God gives us steps to take that will keep us firm footed during times when our world is shaking. Whether it's on a personal level or on a larger scale, God knows our situations and our hearts. He offers
sound counsel to steady us in an unstable world .

"We must pay more careful attention therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away" (Hebrews 2:1).

1) Pay attention to what you have already learned about trusting God.

Write out a couple of Bible verses that God has used to touch your heart. Put them by your sink or mirror. Leave them there until you know them by heart. When God speaks to you through a scripture or a devotion, knead it into your heart like flour into bread. It will amaze you how His Word will bring peace and stability to your heart and mind. Keep growing in your faith.

2) Don't let your heart drift off.

Guard your heart. Take time to pray. Find a few quiet moments or go for a walk and simply tell God the many things on your heart. Be open and honest. Thank Him for the good things you are enjoying. Tell Him your struggles. Tell Him your heart tends to drift. Ask for His Holy Spirit to fill you with His power. Listen for His Spirit to speak to yours. Yes, pray on the run as you head out the door, but make quiet time to get into His presence, too. It is the most refreshing place you will ever find!

3) Make time to be with others who share your faith.

Find someone or somewhere to share your spiritual journey. We sharpen each other as we encourage one another in our faith. We aren't meant to go it alone.

~Father God,
You know my heart tends to drift from You. So many things distract me and even shake me. Today I ask You to help me to focus on You and what You have been saying to me. Help me to pay careful attention to my walk with You. In Jesus' name I pray, amen.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


Who doesnt like a handful of crunchy snacks to munch on. I do, except that my concience keeps stinging me, n I try to push it as far back as I can.........but the truth is that nothing can beat coming home to a bowl of namak paare. No one can eat just one!!!!

Ing -
500 gms - madia / self raising flour
1 tspn - salt
1/2 tspn - ajwain / bishop seeds
1/4 cup - oil
Oil separately for frying.

Method -
Seive the maida along with the salt.
Add the ajwain & mix well
Now slowly add the 1/4 cup of oil & mix well with the flour making it like bread crumbs.
Now add enough water to make it into a tight dough.
Make balls like you make for chappatis & roll them on with a rolling pin to the thickness of a roti / chappati.
Meanwhile heat enough oil in a kadai.
Cut into thin strips both vertically & then horizontally over the vertical lines to make 2 inch long strips.
Now gently pick up the strips using a steel spatula & drop them into the hot oil.
Fry till golden brown & drain on tissue paper.
Store in an airtight jar.

Thursday, November 8, 2007


This is the recipe for Gaajar Ka Halwa. But you will see that it is a very quick version for the same, but is as delicious as the tedious one!!!! So anytime you want, you can enjoy them both.

Ing -
500 gms - carrots / gaajar
200 gms - khoya
1/2 cup - condensed milk
1/2 cup - sugar (or according to taste)
4 cardamoms - crushed
handful of dry fruits / raisins as per your desire.
Enough ghee to saute the carrots

Method -
Scrape the carrots. Wash them & grate them.
In a kadai, add enough ghee to saute all the grated carrots.
Saute carrots till semi-cooked.
When they are cooked, add the condensed milk & sugar.
Cook till no moisture is left, stirring in between.
Add the crushed cardamoms
Mix well.
Grate the khoya & add into the halwa / pudding.
Mix well
Cook for about 2 mins.
Fry the dried nuts & raisins & add into halwa.


Gaajar has started flowing in the subzi-markets & my MIL brought quite a lot, just because she hasnt seen it yet in Kanpur. Well, we made two dishes, starting with Gaajar Matar with chappatis & Gaajar ka Halwa!!! Am posting both recipes one by one. Hope you enjoy them both.

Ing -
250 gms - carrots, scraped & diced into small pcs
a handful - matar /peas
5 flakes - garlic
1 big - tomato
1/2 tspn - amchur / dried mango powder
1/2 tspn - dried red chilli powder
1/4 tspn - turmeric / haldi powder
1/2 tspn - garam masala pwoder

Method -
In a kadai, add some oil.
Grate the garlic & let fry well.
Chop the tomato very fine & let fry till oil separates
Add the turmeric, mix well
Add the other masalas & fry well.
Add both the carrots & the peas and mix well.
Close lid & cook till the carrots and peas are done.
Garnish with corriander leaves.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007


Didnt have coco powder, didnt have maida, didnt have eggs in the house, but me n MIL had a great desire to bake something. Kya karen, kya karen soch soch kar paagal ho gaye the. Finally I couldnt take it anymore & I just barged into the kitchen hoping to do some edible (hopefully) experimentation. The following was the result.

Ing -
3/4 cup - wheatflour
1/2 tspn - baking soda
1/4 tspn - baking powder
a handful crushed walnuts
a handful chocolate crushed (i used some chocolate at home n just cut them coarsely)
1/2 cup - butter
3/4 cup - powdered sugar
a pinch of cinnamon powder
Some milk ....say about 1/2 cup

Method -
Seive the atta, baking powder & baking soda
Beat the butter till light & then add the sugar & again beat till light
Add the butter & sugar mixture into atta.
Beat in one direction.
Add milk till you acquire a dropping consistency
Add the walnuts, chocolate & cinnamon powder.
Mix well & put a tbspn each of the mixture into the muffin cup.
Preheat the oven to 180C.
When the oven is hot, place the muffin cups & bake till 15 mins at 180C. Increase the temp to 220C & bake for another 5 mins.

The result were healthy mini-cakes, with crunchy walnuts & sweet chocolate pcs. The approval was with a nod from both MIL n DIL ;-)

Monday, November 5, 2007


These days am basking in the culinary skills of my MIL. I am blessed by having both a Mom n a MIL who are excellent cooks.

I will tell you a funny incident involving both of them. Once when my MIL was returning to Kanpur, & Hubby was not in town, both me & my mother went to drop her off to the station. The train was a bit late, n my Mom wanted to attend nature's call urgently. We looked around but didnt find a suitable restroom for her to go. My MIL had an idea n she pointed towards a waiting train on the platform n suggested she should use the facilities there. The decision was unanimous & she went on to climb onto the train. Me n MIL sat on a seat right in front of that train, waiting for her to return. No sooner than mom would have begun the activity, the train started moving on!!!!!!! Me n my MIL were shocked to the extent, that we froze, dumbstruck not knowing what to do.

There were some men who were watching the whole scene & they quickly ran to the train & asked people sitting on the window to pull the chain. By this time, my mom had also reached the door panicking. Fortunately the train stopped & she came down.

Instead of fear or shock, there were three of us laughing our guts out, n people around us watching us go mad!!!

Till date we remember this incident & share a laugh!!

Now coming to the real thing..........after I returned from work today, I have a plate of finger-licking chaat-paapdi ready for me. Here goes her recipe.

Ing -

For the paapdi -
250 gms - maida
1/4 tspn - ajwain / bishop seeds
1 tbspn - oil
a pinch of salt

For the sweet chutney
100 gm tamarind / imli
50 gm jaggery
2 dried dates / chuare
salt as per taste

For the green chutney
a big bunch corriander leaves
4/5 stalks mint leaves
4/5 green chillies
salt as per taste
1 small onion
1 small pcs of ginger
Juice of one lime juice

1/2 tspn - roasted and powdered cumin seeds
1/2 tspn - chaat masala
1/2 tspon - red chilli powder

1 katori curd - beaten (it will be nice if the curd is really, really fresh)
1/4 katori - besan boondi (optional)

Method -

For the paapdi
Seive the maida.
Add the salt & ajwain seeds - mix well
Add the oil & mix well, then knead it into a tight dough using little water.
Make very, very small balls & roll them into small small puris
Meanwhile heat oil very well & fry these paapris till crisp golden.
Drain them on tissue paper & keep aside.

For the sweet chutney
Deseed the tamarind and soak them for about 1/2 half an hour.
Now grind the tamarind, soaked & deseeded dried dates & jaggery using some water.
Strain the pulp.
Boil this pulp in a pan till the desired thickness.
Add salt as per desire, n a pinch of red chilli
Let it cool & you can store this in a bottle in the fridge for about a month.

For the green chutney
Clean & destem the corriander & mint leaves.
Chop the onions & scrape the ginger & cut into slices
Now grind all the ingredients, except salt in a grinder
When made into a thick paste, add the salt.
Squeeze juice of one lime (or more-as per your taste) into the chutney

Assembling the paapdi chaat

In a dish add the beaten curd.
Add in the paapdi.
Now add the sweet chutney & the green chutney as per your wish.
Mix well.
Immediately add the boondi & the sprinkle with chaat masala, red chilli powder & roasted cumin seed powder.

Serve immediately, n lick till the last drop!!!!! Unfortunately we didnt have the green chutney, but still...............slurp, slurp, lick, lick !!!!

Sunday, November 4, 2007


Hi girls

I am so releived to have my MIL here with me. She brought with her, a bag loaded with goodies - yes - n believe me they are her Trademark. Nobody makes the North Indian goodies as good as she does. Her namak paare, shakkar paare, gud paare, paapdi & mathri are all out of this world, n beat everything in front of them

I am sharing with you all one recipe of Gud Paare. I can never make them the way she does, I guess it has a lot to do with "maa ka pyar" (n loads of oil / ghee!!!). You have to ignore the part in the brackets if you want to taste they goodies.

Ing -
1/2 kg - maida
3/4 cup - oil
250 gm - jaggery
1 tspn - saunf / fennel seeds
Oil for frying

Method -

In a big dish take the maida.
Now pour oil into the maida & add little by little oil, n mix it into maida till when you the dough mixture holds together.
Please remember that you dont have to knead it like you do for chappatis.
When the mixture has attained the consistency when it holds together, then add some water & knead it into a hard dough.
Take a big ball of dough & roll it into a half inch thick chappati.
Now cut them into vertical strips, & then further cut them into 2 inch strips.
Heat oil & fry the strips till crispy.
Set them aside & drain the oil.
Chop the jaggery into small peices.
Take another pan & add the jaggery into it.
On a slow flame melt the jaggery, stirring all the time
Cook till you attain the consistency where you add a drop of jaggery into the water n it solidifies.
Add the saunf.
Now immediately add the fried strips into this pan & using two ladels mix them quickly so that they are coated.
Transfer them onto a big dish & let them cool.
Now using a light hand separate the strips.

Try this all of you, n let me know the results. It sure is going to win your husbands & kiddies heart

Friday, November 2, 2007


Here is yet another recipe for an Egg curry combined with potatoes to give you a wholesome curry.

Ing -
4 eggs - boiled & slit into two
3 potatoes - boiled & coarsely broken
3/4 stalks of curry leaves
2 big onions - chopped
2 tomatoes - chopped
3/4 flakes garlic - grated
1/2 inch ginger - grated
1 tspn - mustard seeds
2 tbspn - corriander powder
1 tbspn - garam masala or meat masala
1 tspn - turmeric powder
green chillies as per desire

Method -
In a kadai add some oil. When hot, add the mustard seeds
When they sputter add the garlic & ginger.
When they are fried, add the onions & roast till the onions are brown in colour
Add the corriander powder, garam masala, haldi & the chillies.
Fry for about a minute.
Add the tomatoes & fry till oil separates.
Add about 3 small cups of water & salt
Let it boil & then add the potatoes & place the split eggs carefully.
Simmer till the required consistency of the gravy is acquired.

Goes well with both chappatis & rice.
When hot add the


Egg has become staple for me these days. Easy to cook, yet a fulfilling meal anytime. That's why EGG is so,so my favorite!!!

Ing -
2 eggs
5 onions - sliced not very thin
3 tomatoes
1/2 inch pc of ginger - grated
1/4 tsp - haldi / turmeric powder
green chillies - as per desire

Method -
In a flat pan add some oil.
Fry the ginger first
Add the onions & fry till pink
Add tomatoes & fry till the oil starts separating
Add the green chillies, turmeric & salt
Fry till oil separates.
Spread the masala as widely as you can on the pan.
Carefully break the eggs onto the masala away from each other.
Drizzle some water on the sides of the masala.
Lower the flame, close the lid & cook till the eggs are fully cooked.

This is an yumm dish.

I enjoyed them with brown bread.