Saturday, October 31, 2009

Rich Fruit 'n' Nut Cake or Plum Cake

Happy Halloween! Boo!

A very dear friend, Sheeja had her birthday last Saturday, the 24th of October. I made this cake for her. I got this recipe from a fellow blogger's pages - Annita, author of My treasure, my pleasure .

The cake is rich and one of the best cakes I have ever made. Filled with the richness of dried fruits and nuts.
Needless to say, she loved it and that's what made all the pains making it, worthwhile.

For the recipe click here

Have fun!

Luv 'n' luc'

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

2-in-1 Recipe - Carrot Halwa / Carrot Kheer

Diwali wishes everyone. And prayers for a prosperous, healthy and happy year ahead.

My hubby has been pestering me, for days, to make carrot halwa. Finally, with a little time on my hands yesterday, I prepared it for him. He was mighty pleased.

Whenever I make carrot halwa, I save the left over and beat it into a glass of milk with some saffron strands and make carrot kheer out of it. I would recommend serving this kheer chilled.
So, basically, this is a 2-in-1 recipe.


(Serves 4)

  • Carrots - 5 (grated)
  • Milk - 2 cups
  • Evaporated milk - 1 cup( substitute with plain whole milk)
  • Sweetened condensed milk - 5 tbspns
  • Sugar - 1/3 cup or to taste
  • Cardamom powder - 1/4 tspn
  • Cashews and raisins - 4 tbspns each
  • Ghee- 1 tbspn.

  • Fry cashews and raisins in the ghee and set aside.
  • Take a sauce pan and add milk and set on medium-low heat.
  • Add the carrots and stir and let cook for about 15 mins.
  • Then add evaporated milk and condensed milk and cook on high heat for 10 mins , stirring continuously. ( Cook for longer if the milk has not been completely absorbed into the carrots)
  • Add sugar and reduce heat to low.
  • When the mixture reaches a halwa consistency. Turn off heat and add cardamom, cashews and raisins.
  • Serve at room temperature or chilled.

Luv 'n' luc'

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Cabbage Thoran

Have been so busy of late. Have not found time for anything, leave alone blogging. Had quite a few guests over the past week, that I've had time for nothing else since. (sigh!) Now, I resent going to the kitchen.

Here is a very simple recipe for thoran. Thoran is a dish from Kerala. A very simple, steamed and seasoned cabbage side dish .

Ingredients: ( serves 4-5 )
  • Shredded cabbage - 4 cups
  • Mustard - 1 tspn
  • Green chilli - 2 ( slit)
  • Chopped onions - 1/4 cup
  • Urad dal - 2 tspns
  • Curry leaves - 4-5
  • Oil - 2 tspns
  • Salt - to taste
  • Turmeric powder - 1/8 tspn
  • Grated coconut - 1/4 cup

  • Heat Oil in a pan and add mustard. Once they splutter, add green chillies and urad dal. Saute ( abt. 2 mins)
  • Add onions and curry leaves. Saute.
  • Reduce heat to low. Add cabbage, salt, turmeric and 1/8 cup of water. Cover and let it steam for about 8-10 mins. Stir occasionally.
  • Finally, add the grated coconut. Stir and cook for about 2-3 more mins.
  • Thoran is ready.
Luv 'n' luc'

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Salad with honey balsamic vinaigrette dressing

Autumn has set in and the thought of winter makes me sigh. I love the snow. But it's the dark, cold, gloomy days that I dread. But, there's nothing we can do about it. Time can't stand still. Right?

Then a bulb glows in my head.
Aha! There's one thing that I "CAN" do. Enjoy the days before winter sets in. I had to make use of the wonderful fruits and veggies I saw at the stores. With the last of cherries, apricots and spring mix salad leaves on the market, I made this salad a couple of weeks ago.

Oh ya! It, sure, was soul gratifying. The bright colors in the salad were enough to lift my spirit. The sweetness from the fruits and the slight bitterness from the radicchio, subtle bite of the salad leaves and the tangyness of the vinaigrette ......altogether, it was a party in my mouth.

I have listed ingredients for 2 kinds of salad mixes. the first one has the fruits mentioned above. For those of you who have run out of luck finding these ingredients can try the second option of the salad mix. I'm not mentioning any measure for the salad leaves and fruits. Use as much or as little as you like.

Salad Mix No.1:
  • Baby romaine
  • Tango
  • Radicchio
  • Baby spinach
  • Apricots
  • Cherries
  • Plums
  • Steamed french beans
  • Salad Mix no.2
  • Lettuce
  • Baby spinach
  • Valencia oranges
  • Apple
  • Grapes
  • Carrots
  • Onions
  • Pecans
For the honey balsamic vinaigrette
  • Honey - 3 tspns
  • Lemon juice - 4 tspns
  • Aged balsamic vinegar - 5 tspns
  • Olive oil - 2 tspns
  • Salt and pepper-to taste
  • Blend all the ingredients for the vinaigrette together with a blender or beat well with a whisk.
  • Pour over the salad mix and toss. Serve immediately.
Luv 'n' luc'

Saturday, October 3, 2009


I flew to Omaha last week to visit one of my very good friend's from school. Another friend flew down from Philly too. The 3 of us met after 9-10 yrs. Had such a wonderful time. Was not really in a mood to get back to blogging :(

Today, I'm posting my mom's recipe for kurma. I love it and whenever I make it, I feel it does not taste as good as her's. Then I realized that her kurma tastes better because she adds a special ingredient to it.............she pours her love into it :)

This kurma pairs well with rotis or Parattas. but, I like it best with dosas or idlis.

  • Oil - 2 tbspns
  • Slit green chillies -2
  • Bayleaf -1
  • Cinnamon stick - 1 inch piece
  • Cloves- 3
  • Cardamom - 1
  • Star anise - 1/2
  • Chopped onions- 1 cup
  • Curry leaves - 1 stalk
  • Chopped ginger - 1 tspn
  • Coriander powder - 6 tspns
  • Turmeric powder - 1/8 tspn
  • Chilli powder - 1/2 tspn ( or to taste)
  • Potatoes - 2 (cut into 1 inch pieces)
  • Carrots - 1 (chopped)
  • Beans - 7-8 (cut into 1 inch pieces)
  • Peas - 1/4 cup
  • Salt - to taste
  • Coconut - 1/2 cup
  • Saunf - 1 tspn
  • Poppy seeds(kas kas) - 1 tspn
  • Garlic - 1 clove.
  • Coriander leaves - 1/4 cup
  • Yogurt - 6 tbspns
Method :
  • Heat oil in a pressure cooker and add the chillies, bayleaf, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and anise. Saute about 2 mins.
    Add onions and ginger. Saute till the onions are translucent.
  • Add coriander powder, chillie powder and turmeric. Saute. Add 1/4 cup water and saute on medium-low heat till the masala is well cooked. (about 5-6 mins)
  • Add the vegetables and salt and 1-1/2 cups of water and pressure cook for 2 whistles.
  • In the mean time grind the coconut,poppy seeds, saunf and garlic to a fine paste using little water.
  • Once the vegetables are cooked add this ground coconut mixture to it and cook for 3-4 mins.
  • Finally, add curry leaves and yogurt and stir for a minute. Switch off heat and add coriander leaves.
  • Serve hot .
Luv 'n' luc'


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