Thursday, December 30, 2010

Thank you 2010 !!

Thank you 2010 for you have given me a year of beautiful memories to cherish and treasure.

Happy New Year 2011 to all my readers, may the coming year bring peace and joy to you and your families.

My resolution for the upcoming year said in simple words .


What are yours ?


Image courtesy Blinks.of.Life

Monday, December 13, 2010

Spicy Marinated & Baked Tofu Noodles

Spicy Marinated & Baked Tofu Noodles


Can't believe few more days and we will bid farewell to 2010. This year sure went by very quick, when I look back at 2010 few months seem blur. Overall this year has been fantastic touch wood ,one of the most satisfying years of my life both professionally and personally. Today I checked my goal list for 2010 and yes I have made through everyone of them , I was stretched thin but glad that I had the will to make to finish line. If there is one regret I have I think it would be about my blog updates, I seriously wanted to be more regular and also redo my blog which due to conflicting priorities always took back seat.

Last month my husband was travelling and I was alone with kids, this is the first time ever . I was very nervous about managing kids/work etc but thanks to the support system I had both family and friends month sure passed by quick. It sure meant a world to me for all those who gave us company and checked on us to make sure we were doing OK. Thanks a ton. I knew being a single mom was tough but this last one month made me realize and respect how tough it can be to raise kids being single.
Now that husband is back things are back to normal :)


Today's recipe is courtesy my neighbour. Our kids are in same grade and go to same school, she is an awesome cook and today's recipe comes from her kitchen.
Ingredients
1 block firm tofu
1 pack of hakka noodles/chow mein noodles
1/2 cup diced red onions/capsicum / scallions / green onions / carrot .
1/2 inch fresh ginger julienned
3-4 green chillies (adjust according to taste)
2-3 garlic cloves.

For marination
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup vinegar
about a tbsp red chili sauce
pinch of salt and pepper.

For stir fry
2 tbsp oil
left over marinade from above
crushed roasted peanuts
roasted sesame seeds
about 2 tbsp of maggi garlic and chili ketchup



In a bowl whisk all the ingredients for the marinade, keep aside about 1/4 cup for later use.
cut tofu into cubes and prick tofu pieces gently with tooth prick.
Add cut tofu to the marinade and allow it to soak for atleast 1/2 hr, you could probably soak over night for better marination.



Spread marinated tofu on lined baking sheet .
And broil on high for about 25 minutes, turning in between to make sure tofu is well cooked overall.



Removed baked tofu from heat and keep aside.
In the mean time cook noodles according to instructions and keep aside.
Allow wok to be heated and add 2 tbsp of oil.
Add saved marinade, add ginger , green chilies, garlic and saute till garlic turns brown take about 1/2 a minute.
Now add the vegetables and saute for a minute or two and then add tomato ketchup.
check for salt and adjust accordingly.
Now add boiled noodles and mix well.
Add baked tofu and to the mix and saute for another minute.
Remove from heat and garnish with generous dose of green onions, sesame seeds and crushed roasted peanuts.




Makes for a protein packed comfy and delicious dinner.

Happy holiday everyone stay warm and stay safe.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Uttappam

Uttappam

Can't believe its Thanksgiving week already, this year sure seems to have flown by in a jiffy. I have this week off from work and I can't tell how much I have been waiting for this week to come. Now that it's here and a day has already passed by I am dreading that it's going to be over before I know. Looking forward to a trip with family and spending some "ME" time.


Coming to today's recipe Uttappam, it's a staple south Indian breakfast. I usually make uttappam from Idli batter which is about two to three days old.

Ingredients
2 cups Idli batter
2 tbsp rice flour
Toppings
1 cup shredded cabbage
1 cup finely diced tomato
1 cup very finely chopped red onion
2 tbsp finely chopped chilies
2 tbsp jeera
cilantro finely chopped
salt according to taste
couple of tbsp of red chilli powder

Process
1. Add rice flour, salt and jeera to idli batter and mix well.
2. Heat tawa (frying pan) allow for the pan to get hot.
3. Once hot spoon a ladle full of batter and spread to make a round.
4. Add a tspn of oil around the circumference
5. Now add your choice of topping cabbage, onion,red chilli powder, cilantro and tomato.
6. Cook for a minute covered.

7. remove the cover and turn uttappam around optionally you can add a tspn of oil around the corners.

8. Allow to cook for about minute or two turn it , remove from heat and serve.

Few chutneys that go very well with Uttappam are
Onion Chutney
Coconut Chutney
Peanut Chutney
Split Peas Chutney


Noting goes better with Uttappam then a hot cup of coffee.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Shopping with a purpose - Mora

Wanted to introduce Mora to all my readers, I am an avid shopper and love shopping especially clothes, I however love clothes that are very simple yet elegant, I can't and don't wear flashy or clothes that speak out to loud. When I saw MORA's collection I was awe stuck, her collections are gorgeous and were truly up my alley and when I read about Rithika the creator and the story behind the weaves I was even more amazed.It just made those Saree's /salwars so much more elegant and beautiful.

Few of my favorites from Mora's website below. Mora can be found on the web at Mora and on facebook











Love clothes that are meant for real people.

Update from Rithika

Mora will ship around the world please connect via FB and Ritika and her team will get back. Happy shopping.

This post was inspired byDhivya of Sound Horn Please blog.

All pictures courtesy Mora's.

Shopping is so much more fun when there is a meaning full purpose to it.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

A Weekend that was --

Sunday evening sure is downer, but never the less had a fab weekend and after many a busy weekends got a chance to catch up on reading yesterday afternoon. I knew I had tons of tasks to finish but I just could not stop myself from finishing "A song of the Cuckoo bird " by one of my very favorite author Amulya Malladi.
With fall/spring like whether it was only fair that I pick up a book make my self a cuppa of coffee and cozy up to finish reading.
Well Amulya did not disappoint, she really gets the characters alive with her writing. Book is about Kokila and the choices she made and the impact of her choices and all the other characters woven around "Tella Meda" a home and a haven for needy women kind of shelter. I get so involved in the characters I read that it really takes me some time to come out of it. So many times in life we regret or thank god for the decisions we make looking back every decision made knowingly or unknowingly shape our future. Time will only decide weather decision was correct or not.
Now off to complete pending tasks which seriously are past deadline, wish me luck !!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Hot & Sour Vegetable Soup- Sanjeev Kapoor Inspired

Hot & Sour Vegetable Soup




It's amazing how much the weather has changed in the last one week , winter sure did arrive early and boy its going to be this way till March or so, gone are those days were we would go out for a walk after dinner, these days its seems like a big chore to just get out of bed let alone exercise.

Brrrrr kind of weather automatically makes me crave for comforting foods like soups, today's inspiration is from Sanjeev Kapoor, modified according to my taste and my availabilty of vegetables. its a little big on ingredients list but the end result is warm and delicious. Hope you give it a try.

Ingredients

1/4 cup Carrot grated
1/2 cup Cabbage shredded
1/4 cup red bell pepper
1/4 cup green bell pepper
1/4 cup fresh corn
1 stalk Spring onion finely
2-3 sweet red pepper
Oil 2 tablespoons
1 Onion sliced thinly
2-3 Garlic cloves
1 inch piece Ginger grated
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons Green chilli sauce
Vegetable stock 4-5 cups
Salt to taste
1/2 tsp Sugar
1/2 tsp White pepper powder
3 tbsp Cornflour/ corn starch
2 tbsp Vinegar
1 tbsp Chilli oil






Process

1.Heat oil in a pan and add onion, garlic, sweet red chilies and ginger and sauté for a minute.
2.Now add carrot,bell peppers, cabbage and mix.
3.Add dark soy sauce, green chilli sauce and vegetable stock.
4.Mix and add salt, sugar and mix.
5.Add pepper powder and mix.
6.Add cornflour mixed in a little water and cook till the soup thickens slightly.
7.Add vinegar and stir.

Garnish with generous portion of spring onion , drizzle a little chilli oil and serve piping hot.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Achaari Paneer courtesy Tarla Dalal

Achaari Paneer


So Diwali came and Diwali went, house was cleaned, savories and sweets were made, new clothes and other stuff were brought, lights were hung, beautiful rangoli's were drawn,gift were exchanged,crackers were burnt, neighbourhood love felt, hearty laughter with friends experienced, family bonds strengthened, memories were created and above all thousands of calories consumed. This year it seemed more festive then ever love ,love ,love the festive season.

Today's recipe is courtesy Tarla Dalal's website, tried this a few days ago and just loved it. So here goes Mrs. Dalal's recipe

Ingredients
1 cup paneer cubes
1 tsp fennel seeds (saunf)
1/4 tsp mustard seeds ( rai / sarson)
5 to 6 fenugreek (methi) seeds
1 tsp nigella seeds (kalonji)
1/2 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1/2 tsp asafoetida (hing)
1 onion, sliced
1/2 tsp turmeric powder (haldi)
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1/2 tsp black salt (sanchal)
3/4 cup curds (dahi)
1 tsp plain flour (maida)
3 tbsp chopped corriander (dhania)
1 tbsp oil
salt to taste

Method 1.Mix the fennel seeds, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, nigella seeds, cumin seeds and asafoetida in a small bowl.
2.Heat the oil and add the seed mixture.
3.When they crackle, add the onion and saute till it turns translucent.
4.Add the paneer, turmeric, chilli powder, black salt and stir for some time.
5.Add the curds, sprinkle the plain flour and mix well.
6.Add the coriander and salt and bring to a boil.
Serve hot with Roti's or rice. Btw I just added few chopped Jalepeno it just kicks up a notch

Stay warm and may there be peace in your heart always.

Sreelu

Monday, November 1, 2010

Fall Flavors - Persimmons

Fall Flavors - Persimmons

Picked up few Persimmons at the weekend farmers market, Persimmons are something I look forward to come fall, they seems to be a cross of my two favorite tropical fruit chikoo and Tati munjulu(as called in telugu not sure what its called in English).

Hope you are enjoying the last few fall days.

Sreelu

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Diwali Decorating Ideas/Inspirations

Diwali is around the corner, I hope all of you are as excited about Diwali as I am.Diwali is my favorite festival, there is something so special about decorating homes with diya's or candles, fire crackers, friends and food. As all of you are getting ready for Diwali wanted to share few decorating inspirations from few favorite bloggers. Here is wishing all of you a wonderful and a safe diwali. Please click on the pics for more information.

Floral Rangoli by DesignbyVani



Lentils inspired rangoli from designbyvani
Diwali Doily from http://rangdecor.blogspot.com/2010/10/doily-patterns.html
Beautiful Rangoli courtesy Arch from Rang Decor , I am hoping to recreating the pattern below this year at my home.
Flower Balls From Rajee
Gorgeous tablescape for Diwali from Rajee Sood , Click on the link for more pictures and awesome ideas. How beautiful and creative are these bangles when illuminated from IndieHome.
Just few floral candles will ring in the festive mood. (Pic courtesy bing image)



Combination of flowers,candles of various colors and height, adds quite a dimension to any table or home.


Check out my other post on Diwali decorations here
If you have ideas that you would like to share please email and I would love to add it to the list.
Sreelu

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Halloween Decoration Ideas

One of the best things about blogging for me is a chance to meet fellow bloggers who are exceptionally talented and whose passion resonates on their blogs, be it creative, technical, humourous or political.

One such blog I frequent is Hostess with the mostess, she has awesome decoration ideas, recipes and excellent party ideas. All the images below are courtesy HWTM


Check out all the halloween inspired ideas



Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Easy Peazy No cook, no chop Chutney - Roasted Split Chickpeas Chutney

Split Chickpeas Chutney

This recipe is a favorite at home , learnt it from a colleague of mine, cannot tell you how many times it comes handy when you realize you are short on ingredients or time. Goes very well with most of Indian breakfasts like idlee, dosa, upma etc..
Ingredients
1 cup roasted split channa dal ( gulla senga pappu)
2-3 green chillies adjust according to taste
1-2 tbsp jeera/cumin seeds
2-3 cloves of fresh garlic
tbsp of tamarind paste
salt according to taste
Process
1. Grind all the above ingredients in a food processor or a mixer.
Serve with your choice of desi breakfasts.

Can chutney get any simpler, quicker, and easier than this , thought so ........

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

For all of us who are visual learners

For all you visual learners .........

An upside down cake to ease midweek blues
For all of you who are visual learners like me, a blog dedicated to recipes and illustrations, can't go wrong with that combination. Check out The Draw and Cook, a website that's super fun and where recipes add so much more flavor given their illustrations.For as they say a picture tells a thousand words ...

Yummy Cinnamon Rolls

Chick Pea and Sweet Potato curry
How creative and cute is the Palak Paneer recipe from one of my favorite bloggers Kamini

Goat cheese and berry Salad

Strawberry Apple Pie

Now making choclate truffles is not that hard after all.

All images courtesy The Draw and Cook , go check them out for they have tons more.

Guess ?

Any guess on what these fruit/berries/seeds are ..

Monday, October 25, 2010

Bagel Melt Sandwich

Bagel Melt Sandwich

I think this post comes after my longest blog break ever, awww I really missed blogging, I may sound like a broken record but seriously had no time at all so many things to do and so less time. I had set few ambitious goals at the start of the year and I had to complete them before the year end and those tasks pretty much took away any spare time I had, but never the less I am so glad I have completed my goals for the year few weeks ago and that really took pressure of me.

Last few weeks have been partying weeks, Bay area comes to life during Navratri and Diwali, somehow everything seems very festive , Golu's, Dandia's ,parties, food and friends , its truly the best time of the year.

Today's recipe is the end result of my pantry cleaning session, I go through these spurts of cleaning where I pretty much empty the pantry and restock don't ask me why but it happens quite often at my home. It was a cold and chili evening, hot sandwich and soup seemed perfect for dinner. There is this cute little cafe at work that I frequent regularly and their speciality is open top bagel melt so decided to create the same instead of regular bread .

Ingredients
Bagel - I used honey wheat
garlic,olives, sun dried tomatoes, capers, jalapeno, feta cheese ,salt and pepper.
Your choice of cheese
tomato, baby spinach


Process
1. Cut bagel vertically


2. Grind all the ingredients below add salt and pepper and mix well.

3. Remove spread and keep aside, this can be used instead of cream cheese, can be used as dip with pita chips as well.
4. slather a generous portion on each side of the bagel.
5. Top it with choice of cheese.
6. Broil on high in a oven till cheese melts and starts to form bubbles.
7. Add baby spinach and tomatoes and serve hot.
Makes for a perfect breakfast, lunch or dinner. Crossing fingers that I get to my regular blogging.

Love,
Sreelu

 
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