Ever since I was a kid, I loved watching my mom in the kitchen preparing delicious and fulfilling meals with ease. My mom is a magician in the kitchen...(Read More)

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    Female/26-30. Lives in Canada/Ontario/Toronto, speaks English. My interests are cooking, art, design,/writing, reading, .
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  • Tuesday, January 31, 2006

    Simplicity at ease...

    Sigh! Another weekend flew by unnoticed and regretfully unfullfilling... all due to the damn rains! We had showers pouring in non-stop yesterday. All that drowsy weather left us blue and craving for some soul food. That's where I stepped in as comfort queen, all set to reclaim my title! One look into my fridge and I just knew the chicken was going to see his day. Another quick peek into the crisper and the ball was set to roll. Hubby dearie was all too happy to hear what was on the menu. A quick few minutes later, we had a hearty lunch waiting to be devoured!! On a day like this when all I want to do is lounge around and relish good 'ol home-cooking, I want something quick and simple. With a quick thought, one can easily put on a pot of Dal and a deliciously quick meal in minutes! But what if one wants something, not so simple in taste, but just as easy to prepare? Well, then I just take out some chicken and get cooking! But wait, what is that you say? Chicken? Quick? Simple? Well, yea baby! And I'm not talking throwing in a batch of carelessly chopped onions and can of diced tomamtoes and waiting for it to brew into a delicious curry. Oh no! When I say easy chicken in minutes, I mean the big bucks! Take out that kadhai (Indian wok) and lets get working on that age-old oh-so-famous deliciously-mouth-watering-finger-lickin'-good Kadhai Chicken!! Yup, you heard me! It IS that easy!! Kadhai chicken/paneer is probably one of the simplest dishes I can add to my credit. I have made these dishes so many times that I can easily find my way blind-folded! Loaded with crisp veggies and a blend of spices, this dish is definitely a mouthful and an easy contender to the ever-growing list of comfort foods. Kadhai Chicken

    Ingredients: 4-5 boneless chicken thighs cut into 1-inch cubes 1 large onion, diced into big chunks 2 cups mixed bell peppers (green, read and yellow), diced into 1-inch cubes 1 large tomato, diced into cubes 2-3 green chillies, sliced 1 tsp cumin seeds 1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste 1/4 tsp turmeric powder 1/2 tsp red chili powder 1/2 tsp coriander powder salt, to taste 2 tbsp cooking oil 2 tbsp fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped for garnish Method:

    Heat oil in a kadhai (Indian wok), and add cumin seeds. Once they begin to sizzle, add in diced onions and saute till transparent and tender.

    Add chicken pieces, green chillies and giner-garlic paste and fry for a few minutes till chcken begins to firm.

    Add salt, chili powder, coriander powder and turmeric and stir fry till spices blend well. Cover cook for 10-15 minutes on medium-low heat, till chicken is cooked through.

    Add mixed peppers and cover cook for another 3-5 minutes. You don't want to overcook the peppers and want to still have a slight crunch.

    Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with warm fluffy rotis!

    Spicy Notes: To make yummy Kadhai Paneer, simply substitute chicken pieces with cubes of paneer.

    Monday, January 30, 2006

    From my Rasoi (Breakfast) - The Showdown...

    This first month of the new year is almost here; which often makes we wonder, where does all the time go! The year began with a huge bang, and hopefully that should continue... When I decided on "Breakfast" as the topic for the From my Rasoi - January event, little did I decipher how much I would enjoy reading all the posts on various breakfast recipes. Not being an early- morning-breakfast person myself, it was quite a challenge. The whole idea being the breakfast theme was to encourage everyone, myself included, to start the new year afresh. And what better way to do that than with a good hearty breakfast. Take a peek at all the wonderful entries, each with an amazing breakfast recipe to start your day in style. First off to join us at the breakfast table comes Kay, bringing with her a plateful of soft, melt-in-your-mouth idlis and a delicious prawn curry to dip it in. Ooh la la! Next to join us is the lovely Tina, who warms our palates with her yummy Batata Pohas - a traditional Maharashtrian dish! How's that to quick-start your day! Do take a big bite. All the way from Chicago comes Ashwini enticing us with a taste of the state of Maharashtra with her Thalipeeth, to be accompanied by a bowlful of delicious chutney! This is one plateful I'd like to get my hands on. Look no further, for here walks in Sailu with her Matar-Paneer Parathas. All heads turn to this wonderful aroma of the piping hot parathas. Say no more Sailu, bring in the paneer and I'm all ears! (Or should I say mouth?...) Here is one pretty lady I've missed in a while! Priya made it a point to send in her entry just before she left on a long holiday to India. Come back soon Priya, we miss your lovely recipes! Check out her tradition Keralite breakfast dish of Puttu. Lookie what we have here! The only bachelor I know who actually cooks authentic Indian meals for himself. No sir! No instant noodles and canned soup for this guy... he definitely means business in the kitchen! Anthony pleases our egg-cravings once again with this fancy-looking Omelette. Aahh!! The ever so talent Barbara blows me away once again with her take on Bhaturas. After years believing that the Bhatura was not something made for my kitchen rendezvous, she has actually convinced me that they might not be all that hard. One look at these babies of her's and who needs a trip to an Indian restaurant! Can I come to your place for dinner sometime, Barb? A warm welcome to new-to-me blogger Alanna! One look at her scrumptious Cucumber Pancakes, and you'll be asking for more!! Go ahead, take a look, take a good look! Oh Sury dear! You definitely get my vote for your to-die-for Peas Kachori. As if tempting me with plain kachoris wasn't enough, Sury goes a step forward to add peas to them, further bribing me with my love of this greenie!! Oh my! One goodie after another! Check out Saffron's deliciously looking Dhokla. No words can express my greed to savour it! Wait a minute! I knew there was something missing. How could we kickstart a day without a recipe from the lovable Indira! Check out her Cranberry Jam and you may just begin to look for it in your pantry instead of the grocery shelves! Right behind comes Garam Masala bringing in joy with a bowl of Coconut Poha! Now that's nutrition and comfort weaved into one! Can't wait to try this one. Yummy yummy yum yum! When I took a look at this recipe, I so wanted to try it! Thanks Gini for sharing with us your lovely recipe of Madakku Saan. I'm so tempted to make this on a nice relaxing weekend! Reshma was so inspired by the "From my Rasoi - Breakfast" idea, that she decided to take her breakfasts seriously. What a better way than with a plate-ful of Vellapam and Fish Molly to start the day right! Can't wait to see more of your creations Reshma! Oh yes! The lovely Jennifer brings us her Sambhar and Rava Idli. You took right back to the good 'ol days in Bangalore Jenn. Aaahhh, spicy sambhar gives you the right kick for early mornings! If you think all this is to much to take in one sitting, wait till you see what Lera has brought for us. Check out her yummy Chole. Makes me wanna lick the screen clean! On an ending note, let's take a big bite out of VK's Vermicelli and Rava Idli. A perfect end to a great beginning! That's all folks! It goes without saying that I thank you all for supporting my blog and this event and making it such a huge success. Here's looking forward to many more mouth-watering contribtions to many more tintilating themes! Till the next round-up, I leave you with my contribution to breakfast - Sabudana Khichdi!

    Thursday, January 26, 2006

    Never an Early Riser..."From my Rasoi"

    I have never been a "morning" person. There's just something about waking up at the break of day that doesn't quite work with my idea of starting a day well. Infact, come to think of it, I can't even remember the last time I woke up hale and hearty to start the day early. So I guess its evident to say to that I do not entertain breakfasts either! Breakfast for me, found most often mean a mug of coffee and that's about it. When we were kids, mom always made Sunday mornings special. I remember waking up on those days, not to the sound of the shirll alarm by my bedside, but instead, with the aroma of something delicious cooking up on the stove. After we got married, I have many a times wanted to continue with that tradition. But alas, with my inability to rise early, we are left with no option but toast and coffee to greet us. While I love to sleep in on weekends, hubby dear enjoys meddling in the kitchen, surprising me with a breakfast tray loaded witha cup of steaming hot coffee and a plateful of some good grub. Out of the few wonderful, thoughful and romantic breakfasts hubby dear makes for me, there is ONE that I often request repeats for! That my dears, is his famous Sabudana/Sago Khichdi. Of the many times that hubby has made it for me, not even once have I ever bothered to even help him out and see how he does it. And I doubt I ever will! He loves the fact that he can make a mean bowl of Sabudana Khichdi the way I like it, and I am all happy to be the pampered 'lil wife! Sabudana Khichdi Ingredients: 1 cup Sabudana/Sago, soaked overnight 1 small potato, boiled and cut into tiny cubes 1-2 green chillies, finely chopped 1 tbsp chopped peanuts 1 tsp cumin seeds 1/4 tsp red chili powder salt, to taste 2 tbsp fresh coriander leaves, chopped for garnish 1 tbsp lemon juice 1 tbsp cooking oil Method:

    In a non-stick pan, heat oil and add cumin seeds and green chillies. Once they begin to sizzle, add in potato cubes amd fry till they turn slightly brown.

    Add salt and chili powder and fry well till spices blend in.

    Add pre-soaked sabudana, alongwith chopped peanuts and fry for 3-4 minutes till everything is mixed well.

    Sprinkle with lemon juice and chopped coriander leaves.

    Enjoy warm with a cup of chai!!

    Monday, January 23, 2006

    Bittersweet memories...

    I wouldn't say I was a picky eater growing up. Hard to please maybe, but certainly not picky! I would eat anything provided, (a) it looked good, (b) it had an ingredient I liked, and (c) it was not gooey! It must've been hard for Mom to try and get us to eat all the veggies she cooked. Out of the many I refused to eat as a child, is something called the "bitter-gourd" or more so, karela in Hindi. I don't blame myself for this since I truly believe that it is an acquired taste for aduts. I have yet to find a child who relishes this hostile vegetable with delight. But over the years, I began to start enjoying it, until one day, I declared it to be one of my favourites! The bitter-gourd is believed to have many medicinal qualities, one of the main being a good blood purifier. This was icing on the cake! I could now eat it as much as I wanted, and it would only do good for me. I don't know of many ways of cooking the bitter gourd. But of the very few that I do, this recipe tops my list. The tangy and spicy combination is totally in sync with the hint of bitterness that comes from the vegetable's natural juices. So try not to get too imtimidated by its intensity and give a shot at this recipe. I guarantee you will be never see the bitter gourd in the same light ever again! Karela Masala (Tangy Bitter-gourd)

    Ingredients: 2-3 medium-sized bittergourds, seeded and cut into thin slices 1 onion, finely chopped 2 tomatoes, chopped 2-3 green chillies, finely chopped 1 tsp ginger-garlic paste 1 tsp cumin seeds 1/2 tsp red chili powder 1/4 tsp turmeric powder 1/2 tsp coriander powder 1/4 tsp garam masala 1/4 tsp amchoor (dried mango powder, available at the local Indian grocery store) salt, to taste 2 tbsp cooking oil Method:

    Saute cumin seeds in hot oil in a deep pan. once it begins to sizzle, add in onions and green chillies. Fry till onions tenderize and brown.

    Add red chili powder, turmeric, coriander powder and salt and saute to blend in spices.

    Add in chopped tomatoes, ginger-garlic paste and amchoor, and fry till tomato juices dry up.

    Add salt and sliced bitter-gourd and cover cook for 7-8 minutes till done. Sprinkle garam masala on top.

    Enjoy with warm rotis and side of piping hot Dal.

    Reminder: Don't forget to join in on the "From my Rasoi - Breakfast" event. Do feel free to download and post the banners on your site. Deadline - January 27, 2006!!

    Friday, January 20, 2006

    Peas make me go hmmmnnn...

    I love peas! No, I mean I LOVVVEEE peas - always have, and hopefully, always will. I go through a 2 lb bag of frozen peas every 2-3 weeks. With the cold weather creeping up so steadily, I find that my cravings for rice has increased tremendously. Maybe its the comfort that comes from a big bowl of warm rice, I really don't know. So its no surprize that I find myself cooking more varieties of rice-based dishes in winters as compared to warmer months. Often, I make a big batch of plain rice over the weekend, and spruce it up during the week. Of the many variations of rice dishes I make from (purposely) left-over rice, some of my all-time easy-breezy favourites can be seen here, here and here. When I decided to make dinner last night, I knew I would once again be cooking what else, but rice. So I settled for a recipe that was simple and so delicious - Pulao or as some call it, Pilaf. Pulao is very common in the North Indian cuisine. It is often served as a side to exotic curries and salads. So that was it then, I was craving for Pulao. But not just any Pulao, I wanted Peas Pulao! Matar Pulao (Peas Pilaf)

    Ingredients: 2 cups Basmati rice 1 cup frozen peas 4 cups water 1 small onion, thinly sliced 5-6 cloves 5-6 black peppercorns 1-2 bay leaves 1 tsp cumin seeds salt, to taste a pinch of saffron, mixed in 2 tbsp water 1 tbsp cooking oil Method:

    Heat oil in a non-stick pan and saute cumin seeds and sliced onions, till tender and slightly browned.

    Add rice, water, salt, peppercorns, cloves, and bay leaves, and cover cook on medium-low heat till rice is tender.

    Add in peas and saffron water and cover cook for another 5-6 minutes till peas heat through.

    Best eaten warm with any curry or on its own!

    Reminder: Don't forget to join in on the "From my Rasoi - Breakfast" event. Do feel free to download and post the banners on your site. Deadline - January 27, 2006!!

    Tuesday, January 17, 2006

    A meaty fare...

    When we were growing up, I remember eating mutton/lamb as a special lunch on Sundays and Holidays. Mom would make a different meat dsh every week and it was always seen as a delicacy! Her mutton Biryani often won her many praises from friends, family and anyone who happened to eat it, and made her the talk of the town. But apart from her Biryani, I was a die-hard fan of her simple mutton curry that I would happily gorge on with a good helping of rice. A few weeks back, on our weekly trip to the local grocery supermarket, I happened to chance upon a pack of fresh cut lamb. Now this was a joyous ocassion for me since, I've never really noticed lamb at the store before; and my refusal to enter a butcher shop limits me to eating lamb outside of home. With the pack sitting happily in my cart, I treaded home with many ideas on how I could relish this delight. So finally when the time to cook the meat, I questioned myself a number of times to figure out the right way I wanted to dish it out. Bitten with the bitter cold of the lazy Sunday morning, I decided to go for something that would be spicy and good enough to enjoy with fresh warm rotis. So while I cut the lamb into tiny bite-size chunks, I could already taste my leisurely Sunday meal! Mutton Masala

    Ingredients: 2 lb boneless mutton/lamb, cut into 1-inch cubes 1 large onion, sliced 1 tbsp tomato paste 1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste (I just take equal amounts of ginger and garlic and make a paste of it) 2-3 green chillies, finely chopped 1 tsp cumin seeds 1 cinnamon stick 6-7 whole peppercorns 7-8 cloves 1/4 tsp turmeric powder 1 tsp coriander powder 1/2 tsp red chili powder salt, to taste 2 tbsp cooking oil fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped for garnish Method:

    Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds. Once it starts to sizzle, add in sliced onions and fry till slightly brown.

    Add in meat pieces, chopped green chillies and ginger-garlic paste, and fry for 3-4 minutes.

    Add salt, red chili powder, turmeric powder and coriander powder and let all spices blend in well.

    Once meat starts to brown, add tomato paste, cinnamon stick, peppercorns and cloves, and saute for 2-3 minutes.

    Add water and cover cook for 30-35 minutes or till meat tenderizes. You can add more water, bit by bit, to prevent it from drying up.

    Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot!

    Reminder: Don't forget to join in on the "From my Rasoi - Breakfast" event. Do feel free to download and post the banners on your site. Deadline - January 27, 2006!!

    Sunday, January 15, 2006

    Best New Indiblog...Me?? ... Yes ME!!!

    As I eagerly waited for the results to be announced, I secrectly hoped that it would be me. Then a week later, last night, just out of sheer boredom, I decided to check my blog stats. There seemed to be a sudden hike of visitors coming from a particular website. So I hopped on to to the site at question, there it was, staring me right in the face. It happened... I had won!!!

    Yes, friends, readers and blogger mates, I have been voted the "Best New Indi-blog of the Year"!! And as I get into my Oscar Award mode, and thank everyone involved, I want to give a big shout-out at my wonderful hubby who has been so supportive and an eager guinea pig in tasting all my crazy creations. And to all of you out there who read and comment on my posts, this would'nt have been possible without all the love and appreciation I get from you all everyday. So here's to a great new year with lots of delicious mouth-watering and spicy delights to come!! Thank you!!

    Wednesday, January 11, 2006

    A change of heart...

    It was time. I quietly walked into my beloved kitchen and looked around for a bit. "Hmmn... now what should I cook?", I thought. When a glance at the pantry didn't give me any inspiration, I decided to try the fridge. Rummaging around the crisper, I noticed him sitting queitly in the corner, neatly tucked away. "Okay, I guess your time has come, my friend.", said I, and he seemed to agree. Strange! But I still had no idea what do with him. I'm not too fond of eating cabbage cooked the Indian way. Never have been. The only reason I seem to buy this big round fellow, is when I begin to crave for a stir-fry. But today was definitely different. Yes siree! I was in no mood for a quick saute of assorted veggies. Nopes! Infact, what was that again, oh yes, the spicy bug bit me again. This time, I must so add, quite hard, since I willing to give Mr. Cabbage a try! I've always loved green peas (I buy the 2lb bag of frozen peas almost every 3 weeks!!), and seriously believe that have the ability to enhance the taste of anything!! I had this big green ball of leaves, my ever-growing-never-satisfied spice rack, and a cup of delicious frozen peas! The stage was all set and so was I! So take your seat folks, buckle up and enjoy the ride. The show is going to begin. Cabbage with Peas

    Ingredients: 2 cups sliced cabbage 1 cup frozen peas 1 small onion, thinly sliced 1 tomato, chopped 1/4 tsp red chili powder 1/4 tsp turmeric powder 1/2 tsp coriander powder 1/4 tsp garam masala 1 tbsp cumin seeds salt, to taste 1 tbsp cooking oil Method:

    Heat oil in a non-stick pan and saute cumin seeds till it starts to sizzle.

    Add onions and fry for a few minutes till it turns transparent. Add cabbage and fry for a few minutes till it tenderizes and gives out water.

    Add salt, red chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder and garam masala and fry for a few minutes till spices all blend in.

    Add chopped tomatoes and cover cook for 5-6 minutes. Stir in peas and let cook for another couple of minutes.

    Serve hot with warm rotis, or over a bed of rice with some Dal.

    Reminder: Don't forget to join in on the "From my Rasoi - Breakfast" event. Do feel free to download and post the banners on your site. Deadline - January 27, 2006!!

    Monday, January 09, 2006

    Stuffed with Goodness

    Other than one-pot meals, that make dinner time a simple casual affair, I also love having stuffed parathas. Parathas are Indian flat breads mainly made of whole wheat which can be stuffed with almost anything under the sun! Not only is it deliciously ful-filling, but it can also be served without much consideration of side dishes. Eaten with yoghurt or a simple helping of tangy spicy pickle, they are treat for anytime of the day. Parathas were always seen as a special treat at my home. From special Sunday brunches to our never-ending midweek demands, mom would often indulge us. Among other stuffings, paneer is always the most loved at my home. With hubby dear and me, both religious paneer lovers, this comes as no surprise. Its also no wonder that I consider it as a comfort food. In fact, come to think of it, many Indians would swear that stuffed parathas definitely qualify as comfort food. And I believe that the ones stuffed with paneer just tops that list! Paneer (Cottage Cheese) Parathas

    Ingredients: 2 cups whole wheat flour (atta) 1 cup shredded paneer (cottage cheese) 1 tsp fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped 1/4 tsp red chili powder 1/4 tsp garam masala salt, to taste 3 tbsp ghee water as needed Method:

    Saute shredded paneer in a bit of oil with salt, coriander leaves, red chili powder, and garam masala, and set aside.

    Mix flour (atta) with salt and one tbsp of ghee and form into a smooth dough with water.

    Separate dough into golf-sized balls and set aside.

    For each dough ball, roll out the dough into a small circle and put around one tbsp of paneer mixture in the centre. Bring the ends of the circle together and form into a ball.

    Seal the edges completely so that the stuffing does not come out. Roll out these dough balls and into a 6 inch circle.

    Fry on a heated pan adding a bit of ghee around the edges to crisp it up.

    Serve hot.

    Reminder: Don't forget to join in on the "From my Rasoi - Breakfast" event. Do feel free to download and post the banners on your site. Deadline - January 27, 2006!!

    Thursday, January 05, 2006

    A cry for simplicity...

    After all the holiday cooking and eating with rich indulgence, we craved for something simple. A humble meal of the traditional dal, rotis and a sabzi (vegetable) has been long awaited. While I am done eating exotic fancy dishes for a while, it's still a tad bit hard for me to completely stop my escapades in the kitchen. The past one month saw me make a variety of party and holiday dishes full of elegance and flair. As life gets back to the normal non-holiday routine, I am slowly catching up with my simple cooking methods. But somedays, I crave to go a step further! When I first ate this dish at a dear friend's place, I instantly knew it was going to be a regular on my menu. From the looks and taste of it, it seemed to come out from some great kitchen, cooked up with the utmost care and style. But one try at making it, and you'll believe that simple meals can sometimes be the most gourmet! Alu Tamatarwale

    Ingredients: 2-3 potatoes, boiled and cut into 1-inch cubes 1 tsp mustard seeds 1 tsp cumin seeds 1 tbsp finely chopped ginger 1 tbsp chopped green chillies 1/4 tsp asafoetida powder (hing) 2 tbsp tomato paste 1/2 tsp red chili powder 1/4 tsp turmeric powder salt, to taste 1 tbsp cooking oil Method:

    Heat oil in a non-stick pan and add asafoetida powder, cumin seeds and mustard seeds. Once they begin to sizzle, add in chopped ginger and green chillies.

    Add chili powder, turmeric powder and tomato paste, and cook for a few minutes till the paste soften and oil starts to form on top.

    Throw in the potatoes and sprinkle salt, and mix thoroughly to evenly coat the potatoes with the sauce.

    Wednesday, January 04, 2006

    Cooking up Comfort - Vada Pav

    Looks like the foggy rainy weather is here to stay - atleast for tonite. And what else can you do on a louzy night like this than sit back with a good movie and of course some spicy comfort food! Not one to run out of ideas, I had just the perfect recipe in mind to celebrate with, and one I just knew hubby dear would absolutely flip for! A large part of Indian comfort food consists of spicy tantalizing street food. Wherever you look, at every street corner, there stands a hawker frying up these little tasty treats in large quantities. And its no surprise that his tray gets empty as soon as it is filled! The monsoons in India certainly boasts of many comforting specialities. One of my personal favourites of this weather is the Vada-Pav - a yummy potato fritter sandwiched between soft buns (called Pav) spread with a tangy chutney. One bite and sip of warm chai is enough to give you all the comfort you are looking for!

    Vada Pav

    Ingredients: 2 large potatoes, boiled and mashed 1 small onion, chopped 2-3 green chillies, chopped 1 tsp cumin seeds 1 tsp coriander seeds 1 tsp ginger, chopped 1 tbsp fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped 1/2 tsp red chili powder 1/4 tsp turmeric powder salt, to taste 1 cup gram/chickpea flour water, as needed a pinch of baking soda oil for deep frying slices of bread/buns of your choice 3-4 tbsp of Tamarind Chutney Method: In a non-stick pan, heat a little oil and saute cumin seeds, coriander seeds, green chillies and ginger till fragrant. Add in onions and fry till they get transparent. Add salt, red chili powder and turmeric powder and fry for a minute. Throw in mashed potatoes and mix well to incorporate with the spices. Add coriander leaves and mix well. Set aside to cool. In a large bowl, mis flour with salt, baking soda and water, and make a batter just thick enough to coat. Heat oil for deep frying in a skillet. Make potato mixture into golf-sized balls and dip into the batter. Fry till golden on all sides. These fritters are called Bondas/Vadas. To assemble, heat bread/bun slices on a warm pan and spread chutney evenly on one side on a slice. Put 1-2 bondas (depending on the size of the bread slice) and top with a second slice. Serve warm and enjoy with delicious Masala Chai!

    Tuesday, January 03, 2006

    From my Rasoi # 2 - A fresh start!!

    Hey Hey Hey!! We had an amazing response in the inaugural chapter of the From my Rasoi - Winter event, with eager participants mailing me asking to the next theme to be announced as soon as possible! Well, here I am again with a theme for this month's cook-off. (Drum rolls please...) Finally a year has once again come to an end and a new one is here to greet us. When I was contemplating on what theme to propose for this month's FMR issue, I decided that it had to do something with welcoming and accepting 2006 with open arms. That got me thinking deeper. Each day we go to bed at night hoping the morning would bring us better fortune. We wake up ready to face the new day. And as you may have heard a million times over, a good breakfast is always a great way to start. So why not dedicate the start of this wonderful year to the first and most important meal of the day - Breakfast!! That's right people...Breakfast is the theme for January 2006! So grab that cooking garb and get to work. The rules are simple: 1: All you have to do, is come up with a recipe to share based on the announced theme, that will highlight the taste on India. It can be anything and in any form, shape or size, sweet, savoury or even drinks! Special points for those who have a story to tell along with it. Is there a childhood memory attached, a family tradition, or just something you associate with, whatever it is, we want to hear about it! 2: Email me the link to your post and on the last Friday of the month (January 27, 2006), and I will do a write-up on all the participants and their submissions. Do feel free to download and post the "From my Rasoi" banners on your site to let others know you are participating and spreading out the word. I'd greatly appreciate it! So come on friends, lets get together and introduce others to the exotic and wonderful flavours of the Indian cuisine. Happy Cooking!!

    Monday, January 02, 2006

    From my Rasoi (Winter) - The Line-up...

    Wow!! all I can say is, I'm honoured!! (blush! blush!)

    When I started off this blog event, I anticipated some excitement and a few contributions. But what I have to show now is a lot more. Not only did you wonderful people keep up my spirit with your energized enthusiasm and eagerness to participate, but you also gave an astounding performance in depicting the theme with your respective creations!! So without further ado, here are all the culinary experts with there mouth-watering delicacies! The very first entry came from lovely Jennifer of Atabela, who brings us the much loved winter contender - Sarson ka Saag and Makki ki Roti. And if that's not enough, she even has a treat for our sweet tooth - Sooji Halwa. How sweet of you Jennifer! Next in line comes the culinary queen Indira of Mahanandi fame, who never fails to entice us with her hypotic food pictures accompanied by their dying-to-try recipes. She shares with us her annual Winter holiday tradition of making Murukulu - her husband's birthday treat! VK from My Dhaba brings with him a big bowl of Bengal-gram Dal Kootu curry. A perfect warmer for this not so perfect weather! Thanks VK, this is soon going to be my lunch.

    All the way from New Delhi, comes Sury of (Lima) Beans and Delhi Cha(a)t, bringing in her guilty pleasure - Fish Chop. So have a seat, pour a nice hot cuppa, and bite into this little delight! Priya joins us all the from her Kitchen to offer us her husband's favourite spicy snack - Spicy Roasted Chickpeas. Go ahead, pop one in your mouth and I guarantee you'll be coming back for more! Dying for a spicy South-Indian soup? Well have no fear, 'coz Sailu is here! Sailu shares with us her delicious recipe of Ulava Chaaru. Serve this at your next dinner party, and it sure to win you praises! The Cooking Adventures of Chef Paz never ceases to amaze me! Here she is once more with her first time tried Tadka Dal, that was so good, she made again the very next day! Bravo to you Paz! Anthony shares with us his Bachelor Cooking tips when he brings us a pot full of his famous Chicken Pepper Capsicum. This dish left me drooling over so bad, I knew I had to make it! Thanks Anthony! Look no further, here comes Dawna, who's Always in the Kitchen! She celebrates her 101st post by dedicating it to her very own original, Bengali Dal. Way to go Dawna, dals are just what we all need to warm ourselves from this harsh cold! Aah... Garam Masala spices things up just right with a Winter Cauliflower Subzi. So what are you waiting for, go ahead and give it a try! Ms. Stephanie of The Feast Crusade is humble enough to share with us her family's christmas favourite, Mutton Curry. This recipe was created by her mom and handed down to her when she was just 8 years old. Wow Stephanie! Good food definitely flows in your blood! Make way folks, for the Tham Jiak fame, Rokh who makes winter seem so much more delightful with her Kheema recipe. A hot dish for cold times. What a lovely idea Rokh! Haven't had enough as yet, well then, here's more... Going Towards a Better Tomorrow, Kay cooked up enough of the widely loved Chicken Biryani to feed a feast! You are absolutely right Kay, i have et to find a non-vegetarian lover who doesn't crave a mouthfull of this aromatic dish! Golliwog of Amost Gourmet was so inspired by the "From my Rasoi" idea, that she finally decided to start her own food blog. What a better way to inaugurate the occasion than with a plate-ful of Bisibele Rice. Can't wait to see more of your creations Golli! Aaah... what would spicy food be without the wonderful Courtney of Naughty Curry. This time around she totally sweeps us away with her Bengali Pilau Rice. Raisins in rice in winter? How could you beat that! Brett of In Praise of Sardines, needs no introduction to the food blog world. He brings to us Kashmiri Rogan Josh with a very humble and honest intetion behind it - A Menu of Hope. Thanks so much for your contribution Brett, we are all very proud of you. Do join me in giving a warm welcome to another first-time food blogger Lucette, of Cooking Vintage. Her first post and first blog event, Lucette definitely rocked me with her Spicy Fish Curry. It was so good that the dish was reduced to leftovers in no time, leaving her no time to take a picture! Lady Amalthea tried her hand at Indian Cooking for the first time ever and totally won me over with her Warming Vegetable Paneer. A real crowd pleaser! Next comes Marc of Mental Masala bringing with him delectable Dal. One look at his collection of the various lentils in his pantry and you will instantly be convinced that this guy knows his Dals! The well-known and much adored Barbara of Tigers and Strawberries takes the seasonal pomegranate and whips it into a gem of a dish- Jewelled Chicken. Don't let her first-time indian cooking confesion fool you, this babe totally tules at the stove! Just a perfect end to a great beginning with something sweet - Gajar Halwa, served by non other than Deccan Heffalump at the Cook's Cottage. A spoonful and you will be in Halwa Heaven... I promise! Thank you one and all for supporting my blog and this event and making it such a huge success the first time around. I join you in looking forward to many more mouth-watering contribtions to many more tintilating themes! Till the next round-up, I leave you with my contribution to winter - warm melt-in-your-mouth Alu Parathas!

    Happy New Year!!

  • Hummus
  • Mint-Coriander Chutney
  • Spicy Mango Salsa
  • Tamarind Chutney
  • Tomato and Onion Chutney
  • Cucumber Raita
  • Hot and Sour Tomato-Chicken soup
  • Malaysian Spicy Noodle Soup
  • Palak Dal
  • Roasted Cumin Raita
  • Spicy Lemon Chicken Soup
  • Spicy Potato Salad
  • Pizza Rolls
  • Shakkarpare and Namakpare
  • Tangy Paneer Pakodas
  • Vada Pav
  • Sabudana Khichdi
  • Sooji Chilas
  • Strawberry Pancakes
  • Boneless Chicken Curry with Potatoes
  • Chicken and Bean Stir-Fry
  • Dahi-wali Chicken Curry
  • Coconut Fish Curry
  • Crispy Chicken Strips
  • Easy Chicken Chili
  • Kadhai Chicken
  • Keema Matar
  • Malay-style Hot and Sour Fish Curry (Asam Pedas)
  • Methi Keema
  • Mutton Masala
  • Pepper Chicken
  • Tandoori Chicken
  • Egg Curry
  • Indian Scrambled Eggs
  • Onion and Egg Patties
  • Alu Bhaji
  • Alu Tamatarwale (Potatoes with Tomato)
  • Bagare Baingan (Stuffed Eggplants)
  • Cabbage with Peas
  • Chilly Paneer
  • Chole (Chickpea Curry)
  • Dal Fry
  • Gobi (Cauliflower) Manchurian
  • Hariyali Baingan (Eggplant)
  • Karela Masala (Tangy Bitter-gourd)
  • Masoor ki Dal
  • Matar Paneer (Cottage Cheese with Peas)
  • Paneer Matar Makhani
  • Paneer Shimla Mirch (Cottage Cheese with Green Peppers)
  • Spicy Tofu
  • Tadka Dal
  • Tinda Fry (Fried Round Gourd)
  • Malaysian Coconut Rice (Nasi Lemak)
  • Malaysian Stir-fried Noodles (Mee Goreng)
  • Matar Pulao (Peas Pilaf)
  • Meatball Biryani
  • Penne Arabiatta
  • Spicy Curry Fried Rice
  • Tomato Rice
  • Vegetable Fried Rice
  • Alu Parathas
  • Easy Foccacia Bread
  • Paneer Parathas
  • Plain Parathas
  • Chocolate Nut Tartlets
  • Chocolate-Strawberry Grilled Croissants
  • Sooji Halwa
  • Hot Mochalate
  • Masala Chai
  • Peppermint Hot Chocolate