Kashmiri Wazwan @ Radisson Blu, Marathahalli

I consider myself incredibly lucky for having had the chance to visit Kashmir, the land touted as ‘Paradise on Earth’, not once but twice so far. I am glad I have had a chance to explore a little of the cuisine of this beautiful place, to delve deeper into the food that nourishes the people of this land. Kashmiri cuisine has always surprised me with its out-of-the-box (at least for me) preparations, the use of spices to make food magical, and its simplicity. So, when I was recently invited to partake of a Kashmiri feast at Saffron, Radisson Blu in Marathahalli, I absolutely had to go. I ended up having an absolutely lovely time here, with some great food being served.

Read all about my experience at the Kashmiri Wazwan food festival, just in on my blog!

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Kavuni Arisi Adai| Indian Black Rice Pancakes

Have you ever cooked with black rice? It is an ingredient very new to my kitchen, for I started cooking with black rice fairly recently. These Indian Black Rice Pancakes are something I used it in a while back, and they were so much loved by everyone at home!

In Bangalore, black rice has been making an appearance lately on the menus of new-age cafes, mostly in the forms of salad and pudding. I decided to use it in a savoury preparation, a very South Indian one at that – Indian-style pancakes or adai.

The Kavuni Arisi Adai tasted lovely, and the addition of onions took the taste higher by several notches. Thanks to the urad daal in it, it turned out super soft too. Actually, I added in a variety of lentils to the batter – even some of the black moth daal that I picked up in Kashmir. Super nutritious, with all those whole grains in!

Check out the recipe for Kavuni Arisi Adai or Indian Black Rice Pancakes, just in on my photo blog!

Jamia Masjid, An Architectural Marvel in Old Srinagar

The Jamia Masjid of Srinagar, a hugely sacred mosque and place of worship for Kashmiri Muslims, is a beautiful specimen of Persian architecture, with a few influences from Buddhist pagodas. There has been generous usage of Kashmiri glazed black stone, bricks and deodar wood in the building of the mosque, which gives it a quaint, charming look. Our first glance of the mosque stunned us with its prettiness.

Step out of the mosque gates, and you will find yourself amidst a little bazaar of sorts. Walking around these shops, checking out things, photographing, learning and shopping was a treat in itself.

Read all about our experience at the grand Jamia Masjid, just in on my photo blog!

Walking Alongside The Almond Trees At Badamvaer, Srinagar

It was love at first sight with Badamvaer, Srinagar, for both the husband and me. The moment we set foot inside the gates of Badamvaer and caught a glimpse of its prettiness, we were charmed. It was a rainy weekend morning when we visited, in the course of our holiday in Kashmir, and we were lucky to have this beauty almost all to ourselves.

What is Badamvaer, you ask? Popularly called ‘Badamwari‘, Badamvaer is the Kashmiri name is a gorgeous, gorgeous garden in Srinagar. Like the name suggests, almond trees abound in the place (‘Badam‘ refers to ‘almond’, while ‘vaer‘ is ‘garden’ in Kashmiri). I hear the garden comes alive in the spring, when the almond trees blossom. There are beautiful white blossoms everywhere, and the garden is a sight to behold. When we visited this May, there were no blossoms on the almond trees, but the place was still a sight to behold.

Check out my photostory on Badamvaer, just in on my other blog! 🙂

Kashmiri Black Moth Daal Khichdi

The husband and I are suckers for bringing back local ingredients from the places we travel to, to cook with later in our home kitchen. This Kashmiri Black Moth Daal Khichdi was born from the ingredients we picked up on our recent trip to the beautiful Kashmir.

Walking along the row of shops outside the beautiful Jamia Masjid in Nowhatta, Old Srinagar, I discovered the Kashmiri black moth daal. It is a special type of lentil indigenous to Kashmir, packed with nutrients. Of course, I had to get some of it home to cook with in my kitchen. This Kashmiri Black Moth Daal Khichdi is the result!

This is such a keeper of a recipe, a one-pot meal that you can put together in minutes, yet super flavourful and power-packed. The black moth daal adds a lovely earthy flavour to the khichdi, while the Kashmiri ver masala I have used gives it a unique taste and colour. Do try out this recipe, just in on my photo blog!