It's winter. And winter means warm, comforting bowls of healthy goodness. But healthy needn't be tasteless. And soups needn't be one dimensional.....Read More
My earliest memories of chai are not of drinking it, but dunking in it. As a child, we weren’t allowed to indulge in this adult-only staple of most Indian households. However, when our parents felt generous, we did get to occasionally dip our biscuits in their morning cuppa. Or even let a couple of almonds soak at the bottom, while they read those boring newspapers, only to have the nuts warm and chai-spice blanched by the time they got through their cups. We had a system, I used mom’s cup and my brother got dads’. And such days were special. For not only were we allowed a taste of tradition, but also got to sit beside them, like adults, in this morning routine – a routine we often considered so secret that we were convinced it was this very time all discussions barred from our tiny ears took place. It was when the parents plotted our punishments, reviewed our school performances, criticized those friends they didn’t approve of, and in our case, contemplated if we should be sent to boarding school. And here we were, dunking our Parle-G biscuits in their tea, getting an opportunity to eavesdrop. Oh, bliss.Read More
This is a deliciously easy cake that has a subtle flavour of cardamom and tart bites of strawberry. The brown sugar adds a slight caramel flavour, which I absolutely adore in my baked goods! I never ever bake with white flour or refined/white sugar anymore, and I guarantee you this healthier version is just as addictive as any traditional cake. In fact, better ingredients just means you can have more guilt-free ;). Bake this pronto!Read More
I applaud extraordinary. I smile at eccentric. And I adore weird concoctions.
Chana Masala or Chole is one of the most common and loved dishes of Northern India. It consists of a semi-dry curry made with chickpeas, and seasoned with spicy and tangy spices, simmered for hours. Probably the most common way to devour this delicious dish would be as Chola Bhatura or Chickpea Curry eaten with leavened Deep Fried Bread. Mmmm, it’s hard not to salivate just writing about it. This dish also happens to be really versatile. How you ask? Read on.Read More
Upma is a quintessential breakfast/brunch dish in the southern part of India. Fragrant, light, low on spices and a very satisfying bowl on rainy day, it's my constant go to when I find myself cooking for 1. It not only comes together in minutes, but can also be adapted to seasons by using any produce abundant at the local farmers market. Here is my nutrient packed version with Zucchini & Kale - a healthy kickstart for a cool autumn day!Read More
"Breakfast of champions, this gotta be
Flavourful, and packed with nutrients you cannot see..
A warm comforting bowlful, or some quick spooned bites
Putting the muffin aside? Yes, you just might!
Inspired by home, and the bright summer sun
Perfect for meatless monday, or after that morning run,
It's vegan, but fancy a dollop of yogurt? Feel free
Specially if you're a spice wimp, like me!Read More
Here's the truth. I have no idea how I came up with this recipe.
A lazy Saturday lead to me cook up a quick, yet comforting, dinner where I could use up all that was in my fridge (as I was going on holiday soon). I found tomatoes, onions, red pepper, zucchini, some frozen leftover chicken meatballs and a packet of chinese noodles. I love creating recipes with what's on hand, so I decided to use the noodles as a 'spaghetti' base, and create an Indian-inspired spicy sauce with he remaining ingredients to go along. And what could be better than the much loved Butter Chicken?!With a few twists, out came a perfectly balanced and super satisfying Indo-Italian-Chinese fusion that worked in every way, and came together in under 30 minutes.Read More
It's been a while since I wrote about an event. I must be busy.
Someone asked me today whether my events are getting easier [and better] as I host more and more of them. It got me thinking about my first popup just a year ago. And boy (if I may say so myself), have I improved. From struggling to fill 10 seats, to 20 spots going off in a flash within 48 hours, I am inclined to think I must be doing something right. And learning. Still learning.Read More
Bun Omelette, true to it's name, is a soft bread roll smothered in butter and stuffed with the most delicious, spicy, omelette ever. It's a common street food in Northern India (although not the most hygienic!) and was a sporadic late night treat for us when my brother & I were home for the holidays from boarding school.Read More
"Herbs" Dal meant nothing to me till a few months ago, when I made a simple spinach lentil curry and my husband says "Oh, this reminds me of our Herbs Dal". Being of South African Indian origin, my husband's foodie language is sometimes just as confusing as their mixed culture, so I decided to dig deeper. I discovered that Indians households in SA make a version of spinach lentils with a bunch of mixed greens & sour leaves. I couldn't exactly find all the 'herbs' they used, so decided to make my version with a few favourite seasonal greens.Read More
When I served this at one of my events, I really didn't expect for people to ask me the recipe. Had the plain ol' cucumber salad cut un-laboriously for every childhood meal, suddenly become mainstream? Or was it that in an effort to appreciate complicated food, one had forgotten how simplicity tastes? Either way, I couldn't help but remember those summer days when mum used to serve this alongside a Rajma (kidney bean curry) Chawal night, and we always tried not to look at it (as though it would magically disappear!) - not that we didn't like it, but as kids, who wanted to have anything green!Read More
Pearls, glorious pearls
Infused with spices strong,
A creamy mixture stirs
With flavors that don’t go wrong.
Risotto has a re-birth
In an Indian-inspired home,
On a bed of Korma broth
Far far away from home..“Read More
“A desi breakfast staple, goes mainstream this spring,
With asparagus for an oomph, I create this seasonal fling.
Humble and easy, this flattened cousin of rice,
Is ready in minutes, and bears nearly no vice.
Cook up for a weeknight, oh you’ll do so on repeat,
After you taste the magic, once you sit down to eat..”Read More
Ever since I can remember, I have disliked persimmons. What a way to start a recipe right? I know.
It's the classic tale of something I used to love as a child, probably overdosed on one season, and swore never to touch it again. It's amazing how memories remain embedded in your brain, enough to not want to taste that fruit/dish again, even though over time you forget why you disliked it in the first place. Such has been my relationship with this bright peach fruit - one of mysterious aversion.Read More
It's the 29th! What better a date than this to recap the 29. endeavors in 2014.
2014 was a special year for me. I completed my first full year as a chef. Yay! Swapping careers took a while, and despite the many times when I questioned the decision, I am happy to report that I am indeed exhilarated. This year was about growth, learning, accomplishments, partnerships and tiny milestones that mean a lot, yet keep me humble. The only drawback of being your own boss is that there is no team to throw a holiday party with! But I'd like to believe that I'm in part celebrating with hundreds of new friends I made in 2014. Wherever in the world they might be. (Are you listening folks?)Read More