Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Is this hot or what? Spicy, Tangy Imlaana.

The heat wave last week was painful. Even our poor old window air conditioner struggled to keep its cool. One of the days last week I remember I checked weather on A's iPhone, and we in Philadelphia, were hotter than our families back in Delhi. 
Between trying to keep my stiches from the surgery dry to prevent itching and  frequent demands of "can you make something cold to drink", I was just this close to losing it all. Which is when I was hit with a 3-way sword.

"Mommy, Anya finished off all the black juice", baby P wailed holding an empty Coke bottle.

"Can I just eat ice for dinner tonight?"; from Anya - forever looking to get out of having to eat..

"I have a headache from this heat- I think I'll lay down for a while. Do we have something cold to drink?" This was A.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Daily Dinner (8): Rajasthani Missi Roti (Plus a repost)

If I had to pick out anything absolutely essential, stand alone compnent to a North Indian meal, I'd point to the roti (chapati) or the unleavened tortilla-like flatbread. This may sometimes be the only ingredient in a thali; and yet enough for sustenance.
And I'm not talking only about those who can't afford to pay for food. Growing up, I had a cousin who'd only eat his roti with ghee-boora (powdered sugar mixed with butter). My treat at my naani's home used to be roti rolled around a thick spread of fresh malai (milk cream) sprinkled with sugar. My mom loved to coat her rotis with ghee- mirch (red pepper powder mixed with clarified butter) with a raw onion on the side. And on hot summer days, I remember coming home from school and sitting down for a lunch of Rajasthani Missi Roti with a glass of chilled Matha (spiced butermilk). This roti was the informal, no-frills attached at-home thali.

Friday, July 22, 2011

This & That; Plus some more. (And an almost recipe)

Raspberry Sharbat/Preserve
I was supposed to post this piece in June. But as always; more late than ever! This is what comes of excessive planning; is my lesson to myself. I had my blog posts for June all very well organized in my head. The content, the themes, the events. And it actually went well for the first couple of weeks, and then - life happenned; figurately speaking of course! Which is all right, because now, I get to not only talk about what I read in June this year, but also what culinary inspirations came out of it!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Summer Sizzlers: Tandoori Sabzi Skewers

One of the last weekend get togethers I hosted before my impromptu hospital visit was for some friends that we hadn't seen in a long while. Every time we set up a meet-together, we had to rethink our plans - either at their end or mine. So this time, when they asked if we could meet, I agreed; disregarding the fact that A was away that entire week on a work-related trip.  As Saturday came nearer, my anxiety mounted. A wasn't coming back till late Saturday afternoon, which meant that I'd be on my own for the preperatory phase of this get together. Not to mention that the summer was really heating up. Not really feeling up to conjuring up an elaborate Indian meal; I decided leave the responsibility of the main meal for A and his outdoor grill. My menu was going to be:
  1. Fresh lemonade

Friday, July 8, 2011

A cup cake is.....a cake in a cup

The summer of 2007, we were a work place full of pregnant ladies. 3 to be exact; all due within 4 months of each other. Looking back, I think only two of other female colleagues had escaped the pregnancy bug that summer; only because they were not committed yet! Plus we had many other friends that got pregnant that year. We had loads of fun comparing notes on aches and pains, doctors' visits and all matters icky related to pregnancy. We'd spend more time onliine looking at baby sites and ultrasound pictures than working! Those were fun times.... and it was that summer that I came across this recipe...rather the recipe came across my way.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

One Step Forward, Two Back.....

Life has such a tendency to throw you out on a spin when you least expect it, to leave you breathless and open-mouthed and wanting to ask SOMEONE "now what the h*** did YOU do that for?"  I really wish there was a way to rewind life periodically and take a peek at what went wrong where. I don't even want an 'Edit' control ....just a plain 'Review', and then the "Aa Haa!' moment.  Then maybe I wouldn't begrudge all the punches that seemingly come out of the blue and shatter my mirrored wall of Existence. If I had my answers, SOME answers, I'd probably take all that came my way with a grin and a pinch of salt. As of now; I'm left pretty much feeling like a beached fish after a flash flood. There is absolutely no sensible explanation to my last week...any way I look at it.