February 28, 2012

Black and White Wednesday: Noodles


Noodles always reminds me of adorable Po of Kung Fu Panda series. I watched both the movies and fell in love with Jack Black's voice over. :-) Noodles are usually my late night, weekday dinners which I usually put together in matter of minutes. Boil noodles. Stir fry Veggies. Add Eggs. Season with Soya Sauce and/or Hot Sauce. Toss Noodles. Done!

Posted for Susan's Black & White Wednesdays.

until next time,

February 27, 2012

...a disastrous thali encounter and an update on the Fund Drive..

As Thomas Keller aptly said - "Food Should be Fun". Good Food, I mean, which evoke happy, burp-y feelings in your tummy. It could be anything from a simple french toast to very mundane South Indian meals.

Sometime last week we visited a newly opened restaurant called "Aviyal" in Hitech City, Hyderabad for lunch. We ordered their south indian meals as we were in a mood for tamizh food . Except for the ghee-pepper rice (below pic) and yogurt bowl, everything else was a major put off. Oil floating on a red kuzhambu, salty-uncooked okra curry, a watery palak dal, tasteless rasam  - No, nothing such sort appeals to me!. We walked out mid-way and devoured on a cheesy Papa Johns pizza  instead, right below the restaurant.

that is our story with Aviyal.!

Now coming to some amazing news regarding the Fund Drive for Vaidehi Ashram. We raised more than 3 Lakh Rupees in a month's time for the Ashram kiddos.. Isn't that great!

I cannot express in words how happy I am.

I am sure you are too. :-)

Coming to the raffle prize winners, I was supposed to announce them yesterday but few of the donations are currently in pipeline and because every small amount will make a difference to the kids, am waiting for the transactions to go through.

I promise, am going to announce them on  Monday, March 5th and also let you all know how the amount will be disbursed to the Ashram.

A Big Thank You to all 157 generous people who contributed for the cause. A Special Hug all of my amazing blogger friends whose raffle prizes added the fun element to the drive.. :-)

until next time,

February 10, 2012

Amma's Recipes: Eggplants Stuffed with a Spice Paste

"Sweater, n.:  garment worn by child when its mother is feeling chilly".  ~ Ambrose Bierce.

...and there is such profound truth in this quote. Isn't it? This is one of my favourite ones and I remember reading it in an article couple of years ago. It just stuck to me since then.

Today's Recipe: Eggplants Stuffed with a Spice Paste (scroll below for the recipe)
My mother is an inspiration in my life who has a great influence on me. Though, I  look more like my dad, my thoughts & my mind are just constituted like her. We are very emotional by nature and We see the world as black-and-white, no grey shades in between which is the case most of the times..:-)

It was because of her that I happened to visit the Vaidehi Ashram, quite coincidentally I must say. It was first week of January, during one of my usual visits to Hyderabad my mom casually asked me if I was free to visit the place with her. I said "Yes", frankly expecting nothing in return.

Happy are those children who have a mother to whom they can pour out their hearts and always count on her understanding, and a father in whose strength and loyalty they are so confident that they seek his advice and help all their lives. Many people long to be such parents to their children, and could be, if only they possessed enough wisdom and love. ~ Eberhard Arnold

... that one visit did change my life for good. I visited them again, this time with a pretext of my dad's birthday to spend some time with the girls. Fast forward few days..I took up this ambitious Fund Drive for the Vaidehi Ashram. Words cannot express how happy and humble I feel with the unprecedented response I received until now. More than 2 Lakh Rupees 2.84 Lakh Rupees have been raised with the help of 115 generous souls from all across the world.

Just to give you an idea what this money can do - It costs about 4,000 Rupees to feed all 108 children for 1 day. That means, with the money raised until now, the girls can eat their stomach full 3 times a day for 50 71 days! :-)

You can still participate. The Fund Drive is open till Feb 25th 2012, mid night. Click on the Chipin button above. More details here.

Now that we are talking about my mom, it is only befitting to share one of her signature recipes. Isn't it? - Eggplants/Brinjals stuffed with a spice paste made of ginger, salt, cumin seeds and red chilli powder. Simple as it sounds, it tastes just divine when served with hot rice and a dollop of ghee on the top!. My mouth is already watering.. :-)

Eggplant slit, ready to be stuffed

a simple spice paste of - ginger, cumin seeds, salt, turmeric and red chilli powder

 {Recipe} Eggplants Stuffed with a Spice Paste


10 long green eggplants (small, round ones or long, purple ones can also be used), chopped into pieces and slit (see pic above)
2 tbsp oil

For Spice paste: Grind the following into a coarse paste (see pic above)

2 inches or 25 grams of ginger, washed, peeled, roughly chopped
1/2 tbsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp red chilli powder (or more, if you can handle the hear ;-))
1/4 tsp turmeric
salt - to taste


1. Stuff a little spice paste (not too much) into each of the slit eggplant. Keep aside.

2. Heat oil in a pan (which has a cover) and add the stuffed eggplant pieces. Pour about 1/2 to 1 cup water. Cover and cook on medium-low heat for 10-15 mins, until fork tender. Toss them around carefully for every 5 mins.

3. Serve with rice or roti. 

tastes best with rice and roti..

For Dinner tonight - Fresh Cilantro/Coriander ready to be dunked into a pulao..

Some more recipes featuring cilantro/coriander -

Hara Bhara Paneer Pulao
Rosemary Cheese Biscuits (substitute rosemary with cilantro and add some garam masala for an indian twist)
Paneer Methi Chaman
Roundup of Herb Mania: Coriander (for many ideas from fellow bloggers)

Cilantro, though devoid of its vibrant green color, still looks beautiful. Isn't it?

Posted the above pic for Susan's Black & White Wednesdays.

Bon Appetit everybody..

until next time,
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