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Sunday, October 30, 2016

Kadi ~ Mangalorean Wedding Style Besan Burfi (Chickpea Flour Fudge) ~ Gluten Free Indian Sweet


Happy Diwali to all my dear readers who celebrate the festival of lights!! May you be blessed with health, happiness, peace & prosperity today and always! I bet you are having a gala time this festive season. Most of you in India are enjoying a really long weekend too! I heard that Karnataka has an extra day off because of Rajyotsava (birth of the state)! I am totally missing the festivities and the joy of having an (almost) endless weekend! Anyway, since you have plenty of time on your hands (hehe) and if you have run out of sweets that you prepared you can give this new recipe a try. In Mangalore and only in select bakeries you get this very unassuming sweet that won my heart as a child. It is called the kadi and is nothing but besan (chickpea flour) fudge or burfi that is usually made with a small ratio of ground cashewnuts. However, since the time my friend Anupama Michael shared the recipe with me a couple of years ago, I've been meaning to try it out every Diwali and have been shelving the project due to lack of time! I also mixed up her careful instructions and ended up tweaking her original recipe slightly but the result was just as good. It reminded me so much of the stuff we still get in bakeries back home and lug around back to Dubai without fail every year. 

Friday, October 28, 2016

50 Festive Recipes You Must Try This Diwali !


Folks! Are you all set for Diwali? Well, although we don't celebrate Diwali at home I enjoy the festivities through what I experience - from friends who share pictures of the goodies they have been making to those that share them. Back home in India it was a delight to see the beautifully decorated homes and streets. Noise free crackers were wonderful to watch and a joy to partake in! I miss all this a lot but nevertheless social media is making up for it in some way. My newsfeed is usually filled with foodies sharing pictures of a variety of goodies and I simply couldn't resist but make a couple of dishes at home. While the recipe for the sweet I tried successfully is coming up shortly, why don't you take a look at these 50 recipes that I have hand picked for you? Do give them a try and bookmark them for the future too!

I wish all my readers a very Happy Diwali! 
Have a safe, joyous and beautiful festive season with your loved ones!! Wishing you health & happiness always!!

Friday, October 14, 2016

Whole Wheat Banana & Yogurt Muffins ~ The Healthier Chocolate Muffins


It all started when I was drawing up my grocery list and noticed that the only fruit remaining in the fruit basket was this lonesome chiquita banana, the peel almost covered with black spots, not too ripe but not something that my kids would want to eat. All I had to do was peel it and eat it and the story would be finished. But no! There is something about over ripe bananas that triggers this manic urge to bake with them. Why waste it when you can taste it I say! 

When life gives you lemons there are tons of things you can make with them, but when it gives you over ripe bananas the only thing you should do is bake some yummy banana muffins that are healthier because you replace refined flour with whole wheat, butter with coconut oil and throw in some yogurt for good measure! Add some chocolate chips and you can win the hearts of your little ones!
Psst!Thanks to the cocoa and choco chips that masked the strong aroma of bananas, the little ones gladly ate them without a fuss. If you are a crazy mom who likes to sneak in fruits & veggies into baked goodies for her kids then you know what I'm talking about.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Rava Idli ~ Steamed Semolina Cakes


Since the past few days I've been trying out new recipes for breakfast. Since we love to kick start our metabolism with something South Indian I usually stick to my usual recipes. However, on our recent trip to Oman my friend shared her recipe for rava idlis which she quickly made in the microwave. They were just so delicious! The term 'rava' is synonymous with semolina which is also known as cream of wheat or a fine texture of broken wheat. However rava is actually the term given to the texture of the grain (that is powdered to a coarse texture) and down South India, broken rice (also known as idli rava/rice rava) along with ground black gram (urad dal) is used in the preparation of rava idlis. This process is slightly longer as the black gram has to be soaked for at least 2-3 hours before being ground to paste and added to the rava which is then kept aside for fermentation.

Preparing idli batter using semolina, yogurt as the souring agent and soda bi carb (baking soda/meetha soda) or fruit salt (Eno) as a raising agent is a perfect way to eliminate the lengthy process and make healthy breakfast in a jiffy. This works perfectly well for those who are not looking for a gluten free option for breakfast (as semolina contains gluten unlike rice rava). It also works well for those who want to enjoy a nutritious and filling breakfast despite the mad morning rush as putting this whole thing together takes less than 30 minutes from start to finish. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Kartofel Khleb ~ Russian Potato Bread ~ #Breadbakers


I joined the Breadbakers baking group this month after a really long time and the bread of the month is anything baked with fall fruits and vegetables -apples, pears, persimmons, grapes, quince sweet potatoes, potatoes, figs, cauliflower, broccoli, squashes and cranberries. I picked potatoes as my choice as I had been eyeing this recipe for a really long time. Infact, two different cookbooks had two different recipes but I narrowed down and picked the healthier of the two. In addition to mashed potatoes, this bread is made with the addition of wholemeal bread flour that I picked up on sale at Spinney's a while ago. While I never go looking for bargains whenever I do my groceries, a 'sale' signboard got my attention. A lot of flours, especially bread flours were on sale as they had a month to go before expiry and at one third the price, the deal was a steal. I had never worked with bread flour before and this one was stone ground wholemeal flour, perfect for the recipe in mind. However, regular wholemeal flour (whole wheat flour/atta) will work just as fine. 

Friday, October 7, 2016

Restaurant Review ~ Katana Robata & Sushi Bar, Dubai



Restaurant: Katana Robata & Sushi Bar, Dubai
Location: The Address Roundabout, The Promenade, overlooking the lake, Downtown, Dubai
Cuisine: Japanese - Robata & Sushi Bar
Price Range: AED 180-200 for two (without alcohol)
Date of Dining: 28th Sep, 2016

THE PLACE

Last week I was invited to the launch of 'Bubbles, Bites & Beats' which takes place every Wednesday at the uber chic and elegant Japanese restaurant, Katana Robata & Sushi Bar. In Japanese, the term 'katana' stands for the traditional, single edged and slender sword used by the samurai (a member of a powerful military caste in feudal Japan). The restaurant that originated and is frequented by celebrities in Los Angeles has now opened its doors to Dubai

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Apple Pancakes With Date Syrup Butter


Pancakes have been a favourite at my place since a while now. During my growing up years the only pancakes I've really known were our South Indian dosas and trust me, I always called the whole bunch of them as 'pancakes'.  The difference between the two would be that pancakes have some kind of raising agent (baking soda or baking powder) added to the batter to give them a fluff while crepes would be thin and flat with no raising agent added to the batter. So while dosa batter, which would be fermented overnight with black gram (urad) dal is the raising agent could fit the bill of a pancake or Mangalorean neer dosa would be called a rice crepe and not a pancake. 

Anyway, like I said before, these pancakes have become a hot favourite at my place now and sell like hot (pan)cakes (pun intended) the minute I make them. Usually my son is after me to cook him different kinds of tea time snacks. Pancakes are super easy and quick to put together and this recipe calls for grated apples that add to the taste and nutrition of this delightfully delicious and filling snack. 

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Kadi ~ Mangalorean Wedding Style Besan Burfi (Chickpea Flour Fudge) ~ Gluten Free Indian Sweet


Happy Diwali to all my dear readers who celebrate the festival of lights!! May you be blessed with health, happiness, peace & prosperity today and always! I bet you are having a gala time this festive season. Most of you in India are enjoying a really long weekend too! I heard that Karnataka has an extra day off because of Rajyotsava (birth of the state)! I am totally missing the festivities and the joy of having an (almost) endless weekend! Anyway, since you have plenty of time on your hands (hehe) and if you have run out of sweets that you prepared you can give this new recipe a try. In Mangalore and only in select bakeries you get this very unassuming sweet that won my heart as a child. It is called the kadi and is nothing but besan (chickpea flour) fudge or burfi that is usually made with a small ratio of ground cashewnuts. However, since the time my friend Anupama Michael shared the recipe with me a couple of years ago, I've been meaning to try it out every Diwali and have been shelving the project due to lack of time! I also mixed up her careful instructions and ended up tweaking her original recipe slightly but the result was just as good. It reminded me so much of the stuff we still get in bakeries back home and lug around back to Dubai without fail every year. 

Friday, October 28, 2016

50 Festive Recipes You Must Try This Diwali !


Folks! Are you all set for Diwali? Well, although we don't celebrate Diwali at home I enjoy the festivities through what I experience - from friends who share pictures of the goodies they have been making to those that share them. Back home in India it was a delight to see the beautifully decorated homes and streets. Noise free crackers were wonderful to watch and a joy to partake in! I miss all this a lot but nevertheless social media is making up for it in some way. My newsfeed is usually filled with foodies sharing pictures of a variety of goodies and I simply couldn't resist but make a couple of dishes at home. While the recipe for the sweet I tried successfully is coming up shortly, why don't you take a look at these 50 recipes that I have hand picked for you? Do give them a try and bookmark them for the future too!

I wish all my readers a very Happy Diwali! 
Have a safe, joyous and beautiful festive season with your loved ones!! Wishing you health & happiness always!!

Friday, October 14, 2016

Whole Wheat Banana & Yogurt Muffins ~ The Healthier Chocolate Muffins


It all started when I was drawing up my grocery list and noticed that the only fruit remaining in the fruit basket was this lonesome chiquita banana, the peel almost covered with black spots, not too ripe but not something that my kids would want to eat. All I had to do was peel it and eat it and the story would be finished. But no! There is something about over ripe bananas that triggers this manic urge to bake with them. Why waste it when you can taste it I say! 

When life gives you lemons there are tons of things you can make with them, but when it gives you over ripe bananas the only thing you should do is bake some yummy banana muffins that are healthier because you replace refined flour with whole wheat, butter with coconut oil and throw in some yogurt for good measure! Add some chocolate chips and you can win the hearts of your little ones!
Psst!Thanks to the cocoa and choco chips that masked the strong aroma of bananas, the little ones gladly ate them without a fuss. If you are a crazy mom who likes to sneak in fruits & veggies into baked goodies for her kids then you know what I'm talking about.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Rava Idli ~ Steamed Semolina Cakes


Since the past few days I've been trying out new recipes for breakfast. Since we love to kick start our metabolism with something South Indian I usually stick to my usual recipes. However, on our recent trip to Oman my friend shared her recipe for rava idlis which she quickly made in the microwave. They were just so delicious! The term 'rava' is synonymous with semolina which is also known as cream of wheat or a fine texture of broken wheat. However rava is actually the term given to the texture of the grain (that is powdered to a coarse texture) and down South India, broken rice (also known as idli rava/rice rava) along with ground black gram (urad dal) is used in the preparation of rava idlis. This process is slightly longer as the black gram has to be soaked for at least 2-3 hours before being ground to paste and added to the rava which is then kept aside for fermentation.

Preparing idli batter using semolina, yogurt as the souring agent and soda bi carb (baking soda/meetha soda) or fruit salt (Eno) as a raising agent is a perfect way to eliminate the lengthy process and make healthy breakfast in a jiffy. This works perfectly well for those who are not looking for a gluten free option for breakfast (as semolina contains gluten unlike rice rava). It also works well for those who want to enjoy a nutritious and filling breakfast despite the mad morning rush as putting this whole thing together takes less than 30 minutes from start to finish. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Kartofel Khleb ~ Russian Potato Bread ~ #Breadbakers


I joined the Breadbakers baking group this month after a really long time and the bread of the month is anything baked with fall fruits and vegetables -apples, pears, persimmons, grapes, quince sweet potatoes, potatoes, figs, cauliflower, broccoli, squashes and cranberries. I picked potatoes as my choice as I had been eyeing this recipe for a really long time. Infact, two different cookbooks had two different recipes but I narrowed down and picked the healthier of the two. In addition to mashed potatoes, this bread is made with the addition of wholemeal bread flour that I picked up on sale at Spinney's a while ago. While I never go looking for bargains whenever I do my groceries, a 'sale' signboard got my attention. A lot of flours, especially bread flours were on sale as they had a month to go before expiry and at one third the price, the deal was a steal. I had never worked with bread flour before and this one was stone ground wholemeal flour, perfect for the recipe in mind. However, regular wholemeal flour (whole wheat flour/atta) will work just as fine. 

Friday, October 7, 2016

Restaurant Review ~ Katana Robata & Sushi Bar, Dubai



Restaurant: Katana Robata & Sushi Bar, Dubai
Location: The Address Roundabout, The Promenade, overlooking the lake, Downtown, Dubai
Cuisine: Japanese - Robata & Sushi Bar
Price Range: AED 180-200 for two (without alcohol)
Date of Dining: 28th Sep, 2016

THE PLACE

Last week I was invited to the launch of 'Bubbles, Bites & Beats' which takes place every Wednesday at the uber chic and elegant Japanese restaurant, Katana Robata & Sushi Bar. In Japanese, the term 'katana' stands for the traditional, single edged and slender sword used by the samurai (a member of a powerful military caste in feudal Japan). The restaurant that originated and is frequented by celebrities in Los Angeles has now opened its doors to Dubai

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Apple Pancakes With Date Syrup Butter


Pancakes have been a favourite at my place since a while now. During my growing up years the only pancakes I've really known were our South Indian dosas and trust me, I always called the whole bunch of them as 'pancakes'.  The difference between the two would be that pancakes have some kind of raising agent (baking soda or baking powder) added to the batter to give them a fluff while crepes would be thin and flat with no raising agent added to the batter. So while dosa batter, which would be fermented overnight with black gram (urad) dal is the raising agent could fit the bill of a pancake or Mangalorean neer dosa would be called a rice crepe and not a pancake. 

Anyway, like I said before, these pancakes have become a hot favourite at my place now and sell like hot (pan)cakes (pun intended) the minute I make them. Usually my son is after me to cook him different kinds of tea time snacks. Pancakes are super easy and quick to put together and this recipe calls for grated apples that add to the taste and nutrition of this delightfully delicious and filling snack.