Thursday, December 21, 2006

Cooking from the Blogs

My parents, who stayed with us for 6 months, taking care of me when I was advised bedrest, then with the delivery and help with little M, left back for India on Tuesday. We all miss them a lot. Not just because of their help but just their presence which made life feel richer. My sister Dolly, in Bangalore is probably saying gleefully "Your loss, my gain! Ha ha!" Grr! But on the brighter side, my in-laws are here with us for sometime and that makes it more bearable. I'm sure I'll feel the same way when it's time for my in-laws to leave.
I'm continuing to work part time, which works beautifully for us all. I am supposed to start full time again from Jan 1 but am hoping for a few weeks' extension. We'll see how that goes. Fingers crossed!

Here are some yummy stuff from other blogs.

I made this egg curry when we had some friends over for dinner. It turned out so well! The eggs were gone in no time and soon I was left with just the gravy! I should have boiled some more eggs and kept them aside for adding later. Lesson learnt! Here is the original recipe. Thank you, Nandita, for sharing this awesome curry recipe!

The tomato kolambu was delicious! Here is the recipe from the very enthusiastic Supriya. I cut down the number of green and red chillies. My mixer was giving me trouble so the grinding part did not come out well. The end result was a slightly runny gravy but the taste more than made up for the texture. Thank you, Sup! I hope you are having loads of fun in India!

Now that Nitin's mom is here, I hope to post some Konkani recipes soon!

Merry Christmas! Happy Hanukkah! Happy Holidays, All!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Eggplant with Chhole

My blog friend, Asha, celebrated her 20th wedding anniversary a few days ago. She loves anything eggplant and this recipe with garbanzo beans is dedicated to her. Here's to the ever cheerful Asha and wishing her many, many more marriage milestones! Raising my second glass of shiraz as I say "Cheers!" :)

Eggplants - 7-8 small ones cut into small pieces
Onion - 1 medium chopped
Canned Garbanzo Beans - 1/2 cup coarsely crushed
Tomato Puree - 2 Tbsp
Half and Half - 1/5 cup
Cumin Powder - 1 tsp
Garam Masala Powder - 1 tbsp
Red Chilly Powder - 1/4 tsp
Ginger - 1 tsp grated
Salt to taste

Jeera - 1 tsp
Green Chillies - 2 chopped (optional)
Asafoetida - a pinch
Oil - 2 tbsp

Chopped cilantro for garnish


Heat oil and do the tadka. Add onions and ginger and fry for a few minutes. Add the eggplant pieces and fry some more. Add the garbanzo beans, tomato puree, red chilly powder, jeera powder and salt and cook on a low flame until the eggplant is well cooked. Stir in the half & half and garam masala. Garnish with cilantro.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Cat Blogging & Corn and Bean Salad

In all my ramblings so far, I have neglected to mention the presence of a very endearing character in my life. My sweetheart of a cat, Ginger! She is a 5 year old domestic short-hair calico and sweet as they come! I now know why we use the term "curious as a cat". Anything new in the house, she HAS to check it out. Any door that's closed is like a challenge to her. She HAS to find out what's behind it! She wasn't very happy when we moved to another house because she likes to be in familiar surroundings. Also within weeks of moving, M was born and I went through a pretty bad case of postpartum blues. Through it all, N(my hubby) & I were not able to give Ginger as much attention as we normally would. Being a resourceful cat, she soon found a way to make it better for herself. She realized that my mom, N & I were busy with the baby but my father was relatively free. So she adpoted him, whether he liked it or not! My Dad, who is not a pet enthusiast by the longest shot, was followed by Ginger everywhere he went. She would sit right next to him, sleep in his bed and sidle up to him until he finally relented and started paying attention to her. She now knows that he will pet her if she sits next to him. He grumblingly obliges. Grumbling because he has to wash his hands immediately afterwards and that means he washes his hands a few tens of times a day!

Here she is, cozying up to my Dad while he reads the morning newspaper. She goes to him and mews to let him know she wants attention. Now, my Dad has adopted Ginger. Reluctant initially but with affection, finally! :)

On to some colorful looking salad. I came across the recipe for Corn & Black Bean Salad on this website. The ingredients were interesting but the cumin dressing made it irresistable. Once I tried it, I was hooked! I used canned corn instead of fresh or frozen ones so I didn't have to cook the corn. I also adjusted the amount of cumin and red wine vinegar according to my taste. The end result was a very tasty salad that I could make a complete meal out of!

Corn and Bean Salad

It is easy to make and also tastes wonderful. It felt almost like a chaat. I know, I know that doesn't make much sense but try it sometime and you will know what I mean. It's probably the combination of cumin powder, red onions and cilantro that gives it a chaat feel. Tasty, simple and healthy too. Gotta love that! :)