Bhoger Khichuri| Bhaja Muger Daal Khichuri| One-Pot Bengali Khichdi

Last year, around this time, I was in Calcutta, in the thick of Kali Pujo. It was there that I fell in love with the beautiful Bhoger Khichuri, the Bengali khichdi that is offered as prasad to Kali Maa. The bub fell in love with the sweetish khichdi, too. When I returned back home to Bangalore, I began craving for the khichdi all over again, and learnt how to make it too. Today, it is a much-loved dish on our table, especially on winter evenings like this one.

Check out the recipe for bhoger khichuri, just in on my blog!

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Snack Tales

Packing the bub’s lunchbox for school is a task I find as fulfilling as I find it frustrating.

Yes, it is a tiring thing to do day after day after day, getting up early in the morning to make a little something for her snack time, planning well in advance, having to think creatively every day so that she loves what I have sent for her.

And, yet, it is extremely satisfying. I imagine her opening her dabba at school, her face lighting up at the sight of her favourite poori or khakra, and I realise I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Trying to offer her a mix of different ingredients in the course of a week, trying out little twists to regular recipes, including a cheat snack once in a while – that is my way of bonding with her, I realise. It is a way of developing her palate, developing a healthy interest in food.

I love it when she returns home and tells me: ‘Amma, I loved what you had packed for my snack.’ It is, kind of, saddening to learn that she has left her lunchbox untouched, and has preferred to eat the home-made snacks that are offered at school, instead. I tell myself to be happy that she has, at least, eaten something, that she hasn’t gone hungry the entire school time.

When you are a sort of bored SAHM like me, I realise, you relish these little challenges. Packing lunchboxes that your child can’t resist eating from becomes a task that you can’t take lightly – it is an opportunity for you to think out-of-the-box and take your cooking to new levels.

 

Udupi Sambar| Bangalore Hotel Sambar| Tiffin Sambar

I’m a big fan of the sweetish sambar served with idli, vada and dosa in restaurants in Bangalore. When I shifted to Bangalore and tried out this sambar, it was love at first bite. It was much later that I learnt that this sweet sambar originated in Udupi, a small city in Karnataka. My love for Udupi sambar led me to learn making it at home.

Check out the recipe for the sambar, just in on my photo blog!

One-Pot Vegetable Khichdi In Buttermilk| Moong Daal Vegetable Khichdi Cooked In Buttermilk

I absolutely adore cooking with curd and buttermilk. Be it Gujarati kadhi or Punjabi, ras no fajeto or more koozhu, shrikhand or a bowl of chaaswala mug, I love them all. Cooking khichdi in buttermilk never occurred to me, though, till I recently saw a recipe on a friend’s food blog.

Inspired, I tried out a one-pot moong daal vegetable khichdi in buttermilk, and it turned out absolutely fantabulous! I’m pretty sure this is going our new comfort food. Besides, it is a great way to use up leftover buttermilk as well. What’s more, this is a one-pot dish that can be cooked in a jiffy!

Check out the recipe, just in on my photo blog!

Chai (Tea) Masala, The Cheat’s Version| How To Make Easy Masala Chai

It is no secret that I love my cup of masala chai. I prefer the home-made version, made with my own hands. Making the tea every morning and evening is almost like a religious ceremony for me – the measurements have to just perfect to get that perfect cup of chai. With a well-made cup of masala chai and no interruptions, I can attain that state of almost-nirvana. 🙂

Here’s how to make a basic, very simple version of chai masala, the ‘cheat’s version’.

Spaghetti Aglio Olio E Peperoncino| Burnt Garlic Spaghetti

Spaghetti alio e oglio is a traditional pasta dish from the villages of Naples, Italy, a dish cooked with very, very few ingredients. Here, spaghetti is cooked with garlic and salt, in olive oil, each one of these ingredients more or less always available in the Italian countryside. Apparently, the villagers would cook this dish when the times were hard, when there would be nothing much to cook with but when one still wanted to eat a hearty meal.

Check out my version of spaghetti alio oglio, just in on the photo blog!