Peanut & Millet laddu with dry fruit filling – Diwali sweet (no ghee/butter)
Festival Special / Sweet & Payasams

Peanut & Millet laddu with dry fruit filling – Diwali sweet (no ghee/butter)

I’m besotted with millets currently. It is the latest health fad in India – albeit one that makes really sense compared to, say, the quinoa craze. Millets have been and should be the first grain of choice for daily consumption right up there with wheat and rice (if not above them too!). They’re hardy little … Continue reading

Chocolate Lollipop Bouquet
Cakes & Cookies / Finger foods / Sweet & Payasams

Chocolate Lollipop Bouquet

I made this cute little bouquet of chocolate lollipops  for Ikshu’s first birthday party. The idea,  again, came  from  my cousin who inspired me to make the decorated tray. She’d learnt about this chocolate bouquet at a chocolate making workshop she’d attended. She’d used a proper  woven basket,  liked it with what is called ‘ brick’ … Continue reading

PAANAKAM
Sweet & Payasams

PAANAKAM

Yesterday was Sri Rama Navami, the ninth and final day of the nine-day Vasantha Navarathri festival. One typically makes dishes such as Paanakam, neer mor (thin spiced buttermilk), payasam, vadai, vada paruppu (also known as kosambari/kosamari) etc. Paanakam is a simple juice of jaggery and water infused with the flavour of cardamoms. But it takes … Continue reading

PANCHAMRITAM
Sweet & Payasams

PANCHAMRITAM

  Panchamritam, the word, is a Sanskrit sandhi (fused words) of the words pancha (five) and amritam (nectar).  Panchamritam is a heavenly concoction indeed. The five most important ingredients are bananas, jaggery, honey, cardamom and ghee (clarified butter). In addition to these one normally also adds chopped pitted dates, raisins and kalkandu (sugar candy). Panchamritam … Continue reading

Thengai Arisi Payasam/Coconut & Rice Pudding
Festival Special / Sweet & Payasams

Thengai Arisi Payasam/Coconut & Rice Pudding

In our tradition, kids’ ears are pierced around the Ayusha Homam: the first star birthday (incidentally, we follow the lunar calendar for all religious purposes, hence the ‘star’ birthday normally occurs on a day different from the regular one). We celebrated the ayusha homam of my li’l one last week and his ears were pierced … Continue reading

Udyapan Special Kheer in Udyapan Thali (Festive Rice Pudding)
Sweet & Payasams

Udyapan Special Kheer in Udyapan Thali (Festive Rice Pudding)

Growing up in Gurgaon (a suburb of Delhi in north India), I’d look forward to the many religious functions at my neighbours’ and friends’ places. Our colony was a mini-India with people from Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Bihar and Haryana, among many others. Religious festivities often meant being invited for special lunches … Continue reading

Maa Laadu with Figs & Cinnamon/Roasted Gram Sweetmeat with Figs & Cinnamon
Festival Special / Sweet & Payasams

Maa Laadu with Figs & Cinnamon/Roasted Gram Sweetmeat with Figs & Cinnamon

What a week of cooking, shooting, posting and reading up on delicious dals! Thanks to Blogging Marathon being hosted by Srivalli of Spice Your Life, it brought a lot of discipline into my blogging – a commitment to blog every single day (if only for a week), sticking to a theme (I chose dal/lentil) and … Continue reading

Fun Food / Salads / Sweet & Payasams

Shakespearean Cooking: Moroccan Orange&Carrot Salad

“Frailty, thy name is woman!” exclaims Hamlet in the famous soliloquy from Shakespeare’s drama of the same name. Wasn’t there also something in literature that alludes to women being fickle-minded? I racked my brain all this morning, but couldn’t recollect where this quotation comes from. But wherever it be from, it wouldn’t be altogether wrong … Continue reading