Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A very touching thing

These past few days all that we see and hear about on Tv or elsewhere is about the tragic earthquake in Haiti. My heart goes out to all the people there for having to go through such a difficult time in their lives. Why do all these small and poor nations get affected by such huge calamities? Is'nt it enough that most of the people have to work hard to make ends meet and live a normal happy life?

Well we have been getting requests for helping the affected people of Haiti in many different ways and we are planning to do something in our means to help these people get back on their feet and emerge stronger.

But what my elder son Adit did today was very sudden and sweet on his part. When one of the child in the neighbourhood had come home for a donation towards Haiti through their school , before I could say something or get some money to hand it to the girl my son opened his piggy bank and picked out all possible quarters and handed it over to the girl. He said he wanted to do it and that he would want to do more if possible. The contribution would have been minimum but the thought behind it of a 9 year old made that a proud moment for me as a mother.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Mumbai Pav-Bhaaji

A nice hot ,healthy vegetable with warm toasted bread(pav/dinner roll) is what you would crave for these cold wintry nights. Something which you can make as a one dish meal but could yet be very full of veggies, satisfying and rich. This dish sure does fit the bill in that case.
Pav-Bhaaji is Mumbai street food which is healthy inspite of being sold as street food.
You have yummy potatoes, cauliflower which has cancerfighting , bone strengthening propertiesand is heart healthy too, green peas which are high in fibre, capsicums(bellpeppers)which again have various health benefits and then the onions and garlic . By now you would agree with me that PavBhaaji is indeed a healthy food which can be enjoyed by young and old alike.


6-7 medium sized potatoes boiled, cooled and mashed
2 cups cauliflower boiled and mashed
1 cup green peas boiled and mashed
2 carrots grated
2-3 tomatoes finely chopped
2 cups capsicums finely chopped
4-5 medium onions finely chopped
1/2 beetroot boiled and mashed(for colouring)
2 tsp garlic paste
2-3 tsp Everest Pav-Bhaaji Masala(found commonly in your Indian grocery stores )
1/4 tsp red chilli powder
salt to taste
1-2 tbsp oil

For the garlic paste:

Soak 3-4 cloves of garlic with some red chillies for about half and hour and grind them in a mixer with some salt.


In a heavy bottomed pan heat some oil and saute the onions in it till they turn pink.

To this add the finely chopped tomatoes and saute for a while.

Then add the finely chopped capsicum and grated carrots and saute for some time adding little salt .

Then add the garlic paste to it and fry for a while and now add the pav-bhaaji masala to it.

Now to this add the boiled and mashed potatoes,beetroot, cauliflowers and peas.

Add required salt, chilli powder and water to adjust the consistency. The aim is to get all the veggies mashed up and blended to a point where you cannot much identify them seperately.

Let it come to a boil or till everything comes together.

Serve it garnished with finely chopped onion, coriander and a wedge of lime by the side alongwith pav toasted with butter.

You could also add a spoon of butter to the hot bhaaji(vegetable) just before serving it. That makes it into Special pav bhaaji.

Great dish for when you many members to feed, for kitty parties, birthday parties and get togethers as well.
If you do not want to toast the pav when your guests arrive then you could do what my mom used to do. She used to butter the pav in the centre and the outside beforehand and set it aside .
Then when the guests arrive she would place each pav on a idli mould and steam it. This makes the pav hot & soft. But you should do this only when you have many people and you want to serve many at a time but serve immiedately. If kept for some time then the pav beomes soggy.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Chocolate-Walnut Burfi

Updated 12/5/10 . This recipe goes to the Desserts,Pastries & Ice-creams event conducted by Radhika of"Food for 7 stages in life-In love with DDPI(15-24yrs) inspired by Sudeshna.
Wish everyone a very Happy & Prosperous New Year.
May God let everyone eat everything they desire to their hearts content.
Chocolate is an all time favourite for everyone from kids to old people. I myself love to eat spicy or savoury items more than sweets. There are very few sweets that i like to eat and this is one amongst them. Even my fussy son Adit loves this. And the time it takes to make this and the effort level makes it a dish that you would want to make over and over. I am not sure where I got this recipe from but I guess it is one of my favourite cook Tarla Dalal's recipe.

2 cups Mava/Khoya
1/4 cup Walnuts chopped fine
1/3 cup Sugar
1/4 cup Milk
2 tsp Oil
3 tbsp Cocoa powder or Chocolate syrup

In a pan heat the crumbled mava and roast it for a while till it melts . Here in the USA ,I use Nanak Mava. You can also use Ricotta cheese in its place.Here the cheese needs to come together instead of melting.
Add the sugar and milk and cook till it thickens.
In the meawhile grease a small tray with ghee(clarified butter) and set aside.
When the mixture thickens and comes together por half of this mixture on to the tray . Spread it evenly and let it rest for few minutes till it cools slightly.
To the rest of the mixture in the pan add the cocoa powder and the chopped walnuts.
Spread this mixture on top of the earlier mixture in the tray.
Cut into pieces of desired shape and size once it is cooled.

All this takes minimum ingredients and less than half hour to make. And leftovers and wastage , well that never happens with me for this dish.