Saturday, September 29, 2012

Pumpkin farm - fun for kids!!!

Today we visited a pumpkin farm and it was so much fun.. so documenting our visit :)

They had animals that all the kids enjoyed feeding. We saw the cutest baby tigers... They were sleeping and were fed milk in bottles... Apart from farm animals we never expected to see kangaroo, llama, monkeys, fox, etc...  So it was very exciting.
There were camel rides, pony rides, play area, corn maze...
Have you visited a place that you enjoyed with your kids recently?? Do share your experience...

As for me... Apart from all the fun.. got this amazingly sleek tomato cutting knife.. it literally sculpts :) it cost $1.30... Nicee isn't it??

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Lunch plate today...

Seems like a wierd combo right?? :)
Aloo in the chapathi saved from the whole plate being dry.... Beans stir fry and boiled egg whites.. 

What is your wired combo of dishes?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Stainless Steel Rice Cooker

Are you a non non-stick user like me??.. If you follow me on twitter you'll know what I'm talking about. I had mentioned our stainless steel rice cooker. Thought of putting up a picture of it...

Trust me, its so much easier to clean than the non-stick ones. It has a sandwich bottom that aides fast cooking! You don't have to worry about chemicals and scratches... :)

Please excuse the pic clarity... taken, edited , uploaded from my cell phone...

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post or review. I'm just posting the pic of the rice cooker from my kitchen...

Monday, September 24, 2012

Chemical Free Cleaning - My Way - For Our Green Earth

Do you believe in chemical free cleaning??... I do. Ever since I found / read about vinegar and its disinfecting properties I've been using it in my kitchen.  I've already written a post on "Go Green" . This one is to show actually what I use day to day in my kitchen.

Got 2 spray bottles - one has just plain water as marked. I use this to spray water and then wipe with a tissue or towel.. this way you don't need to soak the towel and get mushy and wet. Its quicker and cleaner.

The other one contains vinegar + water = disinfecting counter tops. Also for the sink. Just use the spray bottle to spray and wipe away clean!

In addition to this I use baking soda for the sink.

What is your tip to chemical free cleaning??

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Potato in Spicy Yoghurt Gravy

Its been a long time since I made any gravy with potatoes... stumbled on this recipe and had to try it.

I'm going to say its adapted from the source... I made some minor changes depending on the pantry..

Number of servings - 3 - 4
Potato - 5 medium sized
Onion - 1
Youghurt - 2 tbsp
Turmeric powder
Garam Masala powder - 1 tsp

To Grind:
Tomato - 1
Ginger - 1 inch
Garlic - 4 pods
Cashew - 8
Red Chilli - 3
Pepper corns - 3 - 4

To temper:
Cumin seeds
Cloves - 2
Bay leaf
Cinnamon - 1 inch


  • Boil, peel and cut the potatoes keep aside. Grind the items to grind in a blender.
  • Heat the dosa pan and roast the potatoes by drizzling oil over it until it turns light golden brown
  • Heat oil in wok add items to temper. Add chopped onions and saute until translucent brown
  • Add the ground paste and cook. Add turmeric powder, garam masala powder, salt and cook
  • Add the roasted potatoes and mix well. Add the yoghurt and let it cook
  • Add chopped cilantro and switch off..

NOTD - Light Green from Forever 21

I've read great reviews of the nail paints from Forever 21... mainly about their no - chip power...

I got the shade - Light Green and will let you know how long it lasts :) They retail for $ 2. 80 .....

Disclaimer: I bought the product and is not a sponsored review.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Volunteer Income Tax Program - AARP (on my FB Page)

Hey Ladies! If you are interested hop over to my FB Page to find more information...

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Modhagam (Sweet Rice Jaggery Balls) - விநாயகர் சதுர்த்தி

This is the first time I've made modhagam by myself. Made this for விநாயகர் சதுர்த்தி. Do you like modhagam??

Number of Servings : 20 - 22 balls
Puzhungal Arisi (Idly rice) - 1/2 cup
Jaggery - a little more than 1/2 cup
Moong dal - a handful
Coconut - 1 spoon


  • Soak the rice for 2 hours
  • Then drain the rice and spread it on a towel with tissue paper to suck the water from the rice (30 minutes)
  • Rub off any moisture from the rice with the towel and break it in the blender (coarsely)
  • Dry roast the rice in a wok until it heats up and keep aside
  • Boil the moong dal in water until its soft and flowered but not fully mushy and keep aside
  • Dry roast the coconut and keep aside
  • Break the jaggery and heat it with a cup of water just to melt it. Sift the jaggery water for mud.
  • Now boil the jaggery water. When it is boiling, add the broken rice and stir constantly until it thickens so you can make balls out of it. Switch off.
  • Now add moong dal, coconut, Elaichi to the rice mixture and pinch balls out of it with the help of gingely oil
  • Now steam the balls like you do for idly. The timing might vary.. just keep checking until it is not sticky.. 4 - 5 minutes..

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Lunch / Dinner Plate Today - 200th post

This is my 200th post on my blog :) I'm really happy to have come this far.. and hope to continue so. This is not only our lunch / dinner plate for today... I make this when ever we have to finish left over bread / have lots of left over vegetables.

Its Bread - Pav Bahji (masala). I made it today with beetroot, cauliflower, potato, peas, corn, bell pepper. This is a real quickie recipe. What is your plate today??

Effective Time Management (My story to start with a Planner)

Recently I read a book called "To - Do List".. if you follow me on twitter you'll know what I'm talking about. This book really had me inspired. It is about the lists that we make for all kinds of reasons.

I'm a big pro-list person. Not on daily basis though.. if I have a list, everything is clear and happens quickly. If not, I always tend to forget or procrastinate. Now this book contains a series of real to - do lists from people. You'll really be amazed when you find more reasons to make lists. Advantages of making a list - effective time management, increases productivity.... sense of satisfaction.  Do we all follow everything when a list is made??... Point to ponder..

Now why am I writing about all of this??.. I had already told you the book had me all inspired.. I got a planner ready and a pen.. I really want to sit down and pen down at least my name on it :) But haven't done yet. Every time I sit down, my kid wants the pen and to rip away the papers.. that is not exactly an encouraging start I suppose :)

So really hoping this post will help me some how find the time to write down the plans and lists that has to be done....

Signing off

Friday, September 14, 2012

Lunch Plate Today

Hello everyone!! I thought of starting a series called "Lunch Plate Today". to give ideas about items to cook for you lunch. Quick ones, tasty ones, healthy, etc all kinds!

I welcome you all to share your lunch / dinner plate too.. with / without recipes - just ideas. I'll also do "Dinner Plate Today". We all know that it always takes more time and energy to think what to make rather than making them itself. Most of the time we know all the recipes but just not which item to prepare when/ along with which item...

So hopefully this will be helpful :)

This was our lunch plate today - Cabbage rice, Broccoli stir fry, Potato curry. What is yours??

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Tomato Onion Chutney (spiced) with Dry Basil

This is no unique recipe.. your usual tomato chutney.. with a hint of dry basil. I got this dry basil from Target from herbs section. I couldn't stop adding it to almost everything I cook now. It is soooo flavorful!! I realized a definite taste on our pasta and chutney.

Try it and let me know if you like it...

Red Onions - 1 big
Tomato - 1 big
Red Chilli -2
Tamarind - a bit (optional)
Dry Basil - generous shake overall

To temper:
Mustard seeds
Urad dal


  • Heat oil in a wok and splutter items to temper
  • Add onions and red chilli and saute well. Add tomatos, tamarind, salt and saute well
  • Give a generous shake of basil all over. switch off and grind it in the blender

Monday, September 10, 2012

Beets Vadai

I had 3 beets sitting in my fridge and had to finish it fresh... that is the reason of continuous beet posts :) I made the beet rice for the second time in one week - ADDICTIVE! I was once like this about carrot rice...

Anyways, I've made vadai with beet before.. but may be twice I guess.. This time decided to blog it..

Kindly excuse the pic.. the lighting was so bad on top of my kid's constant playing around the vadai!

Number of vadai - 12 - 15
Beet - 1 (shredded)
Channa Dal (Kadalai Paruppu) - 1/2 cup
Toor Dal - 1 spoon
Onion - 1/2 chopped
Red Chilli - 1
Cumin seeds - 1/2 spoon
Fennel Seeds - 1/2 spoon


  • Soak the dals for 1 hour
  • Then make a coarse paste of the dals with chilli, cumin and fennel seeds without water (or sprinkle little if required)
  • Add salt, onions, beets to the batter and make vadai as you usually do
A real good snack for the kids!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Beet Rice - One Pot Meal

Before starting to talk about how important beets are for kids.. it is absolutely important to adults equally! To me.. I hate the sweet taste of it in beet alone masalas! I try to include it often in different forms... like in pav bahji masala, vadai, perattal etc.. But this is my favorite and fast one!

Learnt the recipe from a friend. Ever since, I've wanted to try it and I finally did and loved it! You cannot spot a taste to sweetness on the rice :) But if you want to, just adjust the chilli powder ratio.

Number of servings: 2
Beet roots - 1 big (or 1 and a 1/2 small ones)
Onion - 1/2
Ginger garlic paste - 1 spoon (I used freshly grated, instead of paste)
Red chilli powder - 1/2 spoon

Basmati Rice - 1 cup
Water - 2 cups

To Temper:
Mustard seeds
Urad dal


  • Heat oil in a pan and splutter items to temper. Add the ginger garlic, onions and saute well
  • Then add the grated beets, salt and red chilli powder and saute well
  • Add this to the basmati rice and add water and cook it in the rice cooker
  • Cook the basmati rice separately and then add the sauteed beets and mix them like for carrot rice  (When I did this method, I skipped the ginger garlic and added hing...)
Both ways tastes great!!