Mango Lassi (Mango Yogurt Smoothie)

I honestly think that the mango is my favorite fruit. There was a time where our ancestral property in Goa yielded huge amounts of fruits like mango, jackfruit, bananas, papayas, chickoos and cashew to name a few. So back in the day we had access to a seemingly endless supply of some of the most delicious mangoes I’ve ever had. I haven’t been there ever since my grand-aunt and grandmother passed away. I miss them and the good old days terribly.

Just the other day, when my mum came over for lunch, she brought us some mangoes. They were not my favorite variety but I knew that this particular variety was excellent for milk shakes and such. I didn’t have too much milk lying around, but I did have a couple of tubs of plain, natural yogurt. So I figured, why not make some mango lassi?

This is a wonderful way to use up fruit. You may  remember the strawberry lassi from some time ago. The mango lassi as well is cool and refreshing, perfect for the crazy summer months, not to mention it also has the deliciousness of mango. Its easy to whip up and in a few sheer minutes you’ll have a lovely cool treat in hand.

Mango Lassi
(Serves 2)

1 tub natural unflavored yogurt (We get it in 400g tubs)
Flesh of 1-2 mangoes
2 spoons superfine sugar (optional)
A few ice cubes (You wont need this if you can chill the mango before blending)

Place all the ingredients in a blender and blitz till is well incorporated.

Serve.




This recipe is linked to – 
Just Another Meatless Monday
Monday, Mmm … Dessert

Sheera with a twist … of Saffron, that is

In India, Sheera, a sweet dish made from semolina is a much loved snack. It is usually served in Udupi hotels for breakfast. In my house, however, we usually had this as an evening tea time snack. My grandmother used to whip up a little plate each, for my brother and me. She would add a some crushed cardamom seeds, a few raisins and slivered almonds right at the end, to add to the deliciousness and the healthiness of the dish. She would lovingly, flatten it out to look like a thin round cake, engrave scallops around the edges using a spoon and carve out our initials in the center, so that we’d know which one to pick. She would also add a couple of drops of food color to tint it. I still remember the excitement at seeing two delightful plates on the table, waiting for us as we came back in the evening.

My version is a little less fancy looking, but tastes the same. I know my Nana would be proud. I use roasted semolina to make this and roasting it brings out a wonderful nuttiness that the unroasted version lacks. I added a few strands of saffron as well. In mere minutes, you will be sitting down to a lovely warm, hearty treat. It is equally yummy if had once its cooled down to room temperature.

Sheera
(Serves 2)

1/2 cup semolina, dry roasted till it emits a light nutty aroma
1/2 cup milk
1/2 – 3/4 cup water
2-3 tbsp sugar, or to taste
1 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)
A few strands of saffron, added to the milk
Seeds of 2 pods of cardamom, crushed
Slivered almonds and a few raisins (optional)

Heat the ghee in a vessel.

Add the roasted semolina and let it fry off till the ghee is incorporated with the semolina and the semolina has fried off. Make sure you don’t burn the semolina in the process.

Add the sugar and the crushed cardamom seeds.

Add the water and milk and stir continuously while the semolina absorbs the liquids.

When the liquids have almost dried out, add the slivered almonds and raisins and stir well.

Once all the liquids have been absorbed, the sheera is done.

You can garnish it with some more almond slivers, if desired.

This recipe is linked to –
Sweet Tooth Friday
Sweets for a Saturday
Savory Sunday
Meatless Mondays
Mangia Mondays
My Meatless Mondays

Some more bridal flowers

Here’s what I’ve been upto during the last couple of weeks. I had to whip up a few bridal flowers. There are two varieties of flowers, one is the starched satin variety and the other is made of a nylon stocking material. Take a peek at some of them here –

I made a ton of these little buggers and as a result have some really sore fingers, but nevertheless some really happy brides. I love when they appreciate the creations, it makes all the effort worth it.

On another note, I have a few very interesting, yummy posts lined up for the next few days. Stay tuned.

This post has been linked to –
Thrilling Thursdays

Eggplant Patties

It seems like ages since I lasted posted, and it has been. We had a bout of the cold and the flu doing the rounds at our place last week. We are just about back to normal and I simply had to publish one post before I got on with the millions of other stuff that needs my attention right now.

Before I went on my vacation, I stumbled onto a very interesting way to cook eggplant over at Manuela’s blog. I was a little intrigued by it and wasn’t sure what the outcome would be. The picture I saw was very convincing, enough to make me give this a try. I’m so glad I did. This recipe is simple to put together. It gets a little messy while shaping the batter into patties, but the end result is so worth the effort and the mess. The patties had a lovely crunch to it and they tasted wonderful. They are not overly spiced, which means you get to relish the delicate flavors of the eggplant and the mild spices and they are surprisingly hearty. Serve these with some salad and bread and you’ve got yourself a lovely meal.

Eggplant Patties
(Makes 12)
Adapted from: Manu’s Menu

350g eggplant (Use the larger variety)
1/2 egg
1 cup bread crumbs, approximately
1-2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2″ ginger, finely chopped
Salt to taste
1/4 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp red chilly powder
Crushed black pepper corns, to taste
1 tbsp. fresh coriander leaves, chopped

A couple of spoons flour, use as needed
Vegetable oil, for frying
Cut the stalk of the eggplant, wash and cut into 4-6 large chunks and cook in salted boiling water until just about soft.
Mash it and add the breadcrumbs, egg, ginger, garlic, salt, cumin powder, chilly powder, crushed black pepper and chopped coriander leaves and mix well. You will need to adjust the quantity of bread crumbs used, based on how wet the batter is. The batter needs to be stiff enough to shape into round patties.
Dampen you hands with a little water so that the batter doesn’t stick to it. Shape into round patties. 
Dip the patties in flour to coat them.
Heat some oil in a pan and shallow fry the patties till they are a lovely golden brown.
Serve hot.

Aubergine in a Savory Yogurt Sauce

Everyone likes to have more than a few recipes in their arsenal that they can rely on when they need something to whip up really quick on a weeknight or whenever they are short on time, but still want a good wholesome home cooked meal. This is something I’m working on. I’m trying to increase my options here. This dish is one such quick meal option. It needs very few ingredients, but is so flavorful, you’ll want to make it even if you happen to have some time on your hands. The yogurt sauce gives it a fresh taste and the herbs make it even better.

Aubergine in Savory Yogurt Sauce
Recipe from: Indian Food Made Easy

400g small aubergines, sliced
A pinch of turmeric powder
1/4 tsp red chilly powder
Salt, to taste
A couple of tbsps of vegetable oil
250 ml plain, unflavored yogurt
1 – 1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 heaping tsp roasted cumin seed powder
1-2 tbsp fresh coriander leaves, chopped

Sprinkle the aubergine slices with salt, turmeric powder and half the quantity of red chilly powder.

Heat the oil in a large pan and fry the aubergine slices until they are soft. You may need to do this in batches.

In a bowl beat about 200 ml of the yogurt with sugar, salt and the rest of the red chilly powder.

Heat this in a small pan, over low heat. Stir frequently to avoid it from splitting. It should take about 5 minutes to warm this up.

Gently stir in the cumin powder and the fried aubergine slices. Stir gently and let it all warm up on a low flame.

Beat the remaining yogurt till it gets to a smooth consistency. Gently stir it in. Check for seasoning and adjust, if needed.

Garnish with the chopped coriander leaves.

Serve warm with hot naan.

Remember to warm the curd over a low flame. The curd splits if it is heated over a high flame.

This recipe is linked to –
My Meatless Mondays
Just Another Meatless Monday
Meatless Monday
Mouthwatering Mondays

The Lightest and Creamiest Japanese Cheesecake

I’m so glad Blogger is back. I was worried, especially when the latest post and comments went missing. But thankfully all is well now. I couldn’t wait to share this delightful treat with all of you. For me, this Japanese cheesecake is humbly plain, yet amazingly glorious. If made correctly, it is light as air, while still somehow maintaining the creaminess of the cream cheese. My husband had picked up one of these a few years ago and it was really hard to not finish the whole thing in one sitting, between the two of us. I was thrilled to bits when I made it myself. And you know something, it was just as good. The lemon juice adds a lovely flavor to it. Sadly, I don’t have a picture of a wedge of the cake after it was cut up. It’s really hard to stop eating this.  πŸ™‚  πŸ™‚  πŸ™‚

I’d read in a few places that this cheesecake is finicky and a lot can go wrong, but after making it, what I can say is that if you follow the instructions carefully, you will be treated to the most amazing cheesecake you’ve had in a while and that too, made right in your kitchen. I do hope you try this out. It would be such a shame to miss out on making this. And when you do, I;d love to know how it goes.

Please excuse the picture quality, my camera was dead and I knew if I waited to charge it, there’d be nothing left to capture. So I just used my phone instead!

Japanese Cheesecake
Recipe from: Diana’s Desserts

140g superfine sugar
6 eggs, separated
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
50g butter
250g cream cheese
100 ml milk
1 tbsp lemon juice
60g all purpose flour
20g cornflour
1/4 tsp salt

Line an 8″ round cake pan (bottom and sides) with some lightly greased parchment paper. (I just lined the bottom of the pan and it worked fine too.)

Melt the cream cheese, butter and milk in a double boiler.

Cool this mix down.

Fold in the flour, cornflour, egg yolks, lemon juice and mix well.

Whisk the egg whites with the cream of tartar till it is foamy. Add the sugar and continue to whisk till soft peaks form.

Add the cream cheese mix to the egg white mix and mix well.

Pour the mix into the prepared cake pan and bake it in a water bath at 160ΒΊC for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until set and golden brown.

Note: I halved the recipe and used a 6″ round cake pan.

This recipe is linked to –
Sweet Tooth Friday
Sweets for a Saturday
A Themed Bakers Sunday
Not Baaad
Mangia Mondays
Homespun Bakeshop

Bombay Street Food Special #3 – Rava Idli

I know, it seems like I’ve abandoned this series on Bombay street food. I haven’t, but sometimes theres just so much going on that its not possible to fit everything into a twenty four hour day. In the past few days since I’ve returned, the day seems to have somehow shrunk and become even shorter. Anyway, the news is that I’m going to try and squeeze in some time for this serious. 


South Indian fare is very popular street food in Bombay. Today, I’ve got a little twist on the the traditional fare, but I promise you it is good, so very good. Typically, South Indian snacks like dosas and idlis take a while to make. The batter is made with a base combination of rice and urad dal (black gram). The ingredients have to be soaked, ground and fermented etc. (not necessarily in that order). In time, I’m itching to try out the traditional method. This take, however, is a quicker, simpler version. Its almost an instant recipe. The idlis turn out really delicious and I made a quick coconut chutney that my mum always made to go along with dosas and idlis. My mum has this amazing lady for a neighbor. She is from South India and ever so often whenever she has time away from school, where she’s a full time teacher, assistant head mistress and I don’t know what else, she’d treat us to a huge portion of breakfast snacks like this that she’d make for her family. I miss those days. And honestly, she was the first person I thought about while I was eating these. I should try and coax her to give me her recipe for the traditional rava idli.


But back to the instant rava idlis, they make a quick healthy snack with rava (semolina) and it is steamed. What could be healthier? For me, this is like soul food.



Rava Idli
Adapted from: Cooking Up Something Nice
(Makes 8)
1 cup rava or semolina
1 cup curd or plain unflavored yogurt
Salt to taste
1/4 to 1/2 cup water (I used a almost half)
1/2 tsp oil (I forgot to add this but it still turned out great)
A pinch of soda bi-carbonate

Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl and make sure there are no lumps.

Let it stand for 20-30 minutes. During this time you can make the chutney (Recipe below).

Pour the batter into idli moulds and steam for about 10 minutes.

Open the steamer and let it cool for a couple of minutes. Then take the idlis out of the moulds. A small spatula or the blunt end of a knife should be just right incase you need to help the out of the moulds.

Enjoy them hot with some Coconut Chutney.

Coconut Chutney

1/2-3/4 cup of freshly grated coconut
1-2 green chillies
Salt, to taste
1/2″ ginger
A ball of tamarind, the size of a large marble, soaked in a little water

Blitz all the ingredients together in a blender. Taste and adjust seasoning.

And thats it. In half an hour you can treat yourself to something yummy and wholesome.

This recipe is linked to –
Tuesdays at the Table
Delectable Tuesdays

Tuesday Night Supper Club
Whats Cooking Wednesday

Spicy Tuna Pasta

It feels so good to be back. I had a lovely week off, despite the sweltering heat and I’m ready to get back to the grind. I can’t believe how much I missed blogging and interacting with my blogger friends – I missed you guys loads.

Today, I’m going to share with you a meal thats so quick to put together, it never ceases to amaze me. The added bonus, is that you need nothing special for this pasta dish. All the ingredients are usually found in any pantry most of the times. I don’t know about you, but so often I find myself so hard pressed for time that I haven’t been able to put together something for dinner. I’m trying to increase my repertoire of quick and easy meals that I can use on days like this rather than ordering for take out. I somehow just can’t do takeout anymore, unless of course there is no other option. This is one of those meals that I stumbled upon in those times of desperation and I’m so glad I did. This ones a keeper. How do I know that? I’m going to share with you a piece of information I don’t think I’ve mentioned before. My husband does not like pasta. And thats that. This is difficult for me to understand, because me, I love pasta. Imagine my joy when he told me he really enjoyed it. I tell you, this ones good enough to convert even a non pasta lover (if there is such a thing). Go ahead and give this a try.

Spicy Tuna Pasta


1-1 1/2 cup uncooked pasta (depending on how much you need)
1 large onion, finely chopped
3-4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 green pepper, diced (You can use red or yellow peppers too, I just used what I had at hand)
3-4 tbsp canned tuna flakes or chunks
Red chilli flakes, to taste
Salt, to taste
Freshly crushed black pepper, to taste
Grated cheese
1 tbsp olive oil

Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the package.

While the pasta is cooking, heat some olive in a pan. Add the onion and stir fry for a couple of minutes, till it starts softening.

Add the chopped garlic and let it release its flavors.

Add the diced peppers and stir well. Let it cook off for a couple of minutes.

Add the tuna flakes.

Season this mix with salt, crushed black pepper and red chilly flakes. Mix well. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.

Add the cooked pasta to this mix and gently fold everything till all the ingredients are evenly distributed.

Add some grated cheese. I don’t use a measure for the cheese, I just grate as much as needed. I taste to check if theres enough to match our liking.

Again, mix gently, you don’t want to break up the pasta. The heat from the cooked pasta as well as the fish mix will melt the cheese, making it even better.

Serve hot.

This recipe is linked to –
Not Baaad
My Meatless Mondays
Meatless Mondays
Just Another Meatless Monday
Mangia Mondays
Mouthwatering Mondays