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How is your kitchen organised?

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Many years ago, almost twenty years to be precise, I was frantically looking for the plain flour in my pantry or store room. I have the luxury of having a small room off the kitchen where I can keep my provisions . This way they remain easily accessible. But being the impulsive cook, I often begin cooking without getting all the ingredients together. This was one such day when I had cracked the eggs into the sugar and was looking for the flour to make my cake.

Daughter No 1 was observing my agitation when suddenly with the sagacity of a 10 year old, asked me ” Why don’t you organise your kitchen.” I wa in no mood for advice from someone less  than half my age so I told her to do it herself if she was som smart.

And surprisingly she took it seriously.

How would you like to organise your kitchen?

I was a bit stunned at this question. What exactly did she mean?

Reading my mind she continued:

Do you want to organise it by bottle size ? i.e   keep the large jars behind ? Keep the smaller jars in front ? Or line up the jars from big to small ?

Do you want to organise it alphabetically ? i.e A is for atta , B is for Besan, C is for channa dal?

Do you want to organise it according to usage? i.e. Keep the sugar that you need close at hand and keep the rice that you use once in a while in the pantry ?

I was simply stunned!

Here was my little auditor in the making all sorted out .

I realised that she was talking sense.

How do you organise your kitchen ? 

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Alas! You can see from my own shelf that my kitchen is still not organised as per her recommendations 🙁

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ROYCE’ no Plain Jane chocolate

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a guilty pleasure

The two of us were enjoying a cup of coffee in J’s open terrace one morning, when her uniformed bearer came in with a box of chocolates. It was a birth announcement addressed to her mother in law.

J asked him to keep it on her bed and we continues with our conversation. Suddenly, her curiosity got the better of her and she went inside and brought the box out.

“She’s not returning for a week. Let’s just try one! ”

As she opened the box, we both felt the thrill of girls breaking a school rule. We took a chocolate each and slipped it into our mouths , unconsciously looking over our shoulders for a Prefect to catch us eating in class. As the chocolate melted and the hidden taste of orange hit our palates, we reached out for the next. And the next and the next. It wasn’t long before they were all over.

“She doesn’t eat chocolate , anyway, ” she said as the last bit of bitter sweetness swirled around in our mouths .

That guilty pleasure remains with me whenever I pass a chocolate shop and I quickly look away before I succumb to the temptation of indulging in a bite of sin.

A bite of royce’

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I always wondered what ROYCE‘  tasted like, every time I walked by the shop at Palladium. What was so special about it that everyone whispered around it in reverential tones? Was it bitter? Was it soft and creamy?

Yesterday , I found out ,when I was gifted a box of pure pleasure.

no Plain jane

Carefully removing it from the blue cool bag it was packed in , I gently removed the ice bag and slowly opened up the slim box. Removing the inner plastic cover, I must confess my disappointment at seeing row upon row of plain chocolate finely dusted with cocoa. Where were the fancy curls and swirls? Or the bits of nut ?

But the moment it’s bitter sweetness assaulted my taste buds, I knew just why .

The bite sized pieces were just right . They were soft and creamy as they melted in my mouth, filling it up with a sweetness and bitterness that was …. well …perfect balanced.

Unassuming and unpretentious , they were small but packed  a punch .

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High Protein Idlis for #Diabetics

 

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Idlis without the guilt

 

The Idli is a traditional south Indian tiffin delicacy that is universally popular. Despite being steamed, diabetics often restrict their consumption of idli because of its carbohydrate content. However this easy idli recipe cuts down drastically on the carbs and increases the protein content . So now diabetics can enjoy  a guilt free breakfast and a great any time nibble.

Sadly, diabetes is on the rise world wide,  particularly in India.

Diet and exercise are both essential to control this lifestyle disease. Excessive carbohydrates intake  contribute to increased sugar levels.  Many people, therefore, give up traditional foods or at least have them in moderation. But there is no need to drastically change one’s diet. A person with diabetes can easily have traditional foods that are modified.

 

 

 

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Eggs on potato straws #Salli per eeda

Eggs and Potato straws

I love collecting recipes from dear friends and my recipe book is filled with many  such treasures. I love eggs and this delightful Parsi dish has become one of the mainstays in my food repertoire. I am really glad I invited Piroja and Darius to tea one afternoon.

This give me the opportunity to use my tea trolley and my silver service. I could also use my tea cups and tea cosy and serve up dainty cucumber sandwiches and biscuits. But above all,  it also introduced me to salli per eeda.

Piroja brought along a packet of potato crisps or salli as they are called and as we sat down to tea, explained how they were to be used with eggs.  Salli per eeda as they are called in Gujerati are great for breakfast but can also serve as a substantial snack or light meal .

As we munched the sandwiches, Piroja explained how the eggs were made. This Parsi recipe has now become a staple of my household especially on wet, mornings when just plain eggs on toast won’t do.

The Parsis are a non indigenous people who came to our shores a thousand years or more?  earlier to escape persecution by the Muslim expansion into Iran. I, for one, am happy that they came here as they have adopted our spices to make a unique cuisine that is tasty and easy to make. 

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How to make an easy Chicken liver and Mushroom Pate

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A hot buttered toast with chicken liver and mushroom pate is the best way to start a day on a wet, monsoon morning.

There’s nothing like a hot buttered toast to welcome a rainy morning. Especially one that is slathered with a generous layer of chicken and mushroom pate. This has been one of my favourites ever since I had it on a summer cruise down the Vecht during a holiday in Amsterdam. And from that time on, it has been a staple on Hubby Dear’s shopping list every time he visits the Dutch capital.

Shopping at Albert Heijn, the largest food retailer in the Netherlands is actually his favourite past time. He finds it particularly de-stressing after a hard day’s work. However, it is not always possible to go shopping so I scoured the net for a suitable recipe. In my search , I also realised the importance of #food photography. Alas! My photograph above belies my learning as very often I am in a great rush to take the photo before the food is gobbled up. But don’t be fooled by the photo, it is a very easy and tasty dish to make and impress your guests at fancy parties!

How difficult is it to make a chicken liver and mushroom pate at home?

Actually it is dead easy!

I found this out entirely by accident when I made my version of chicken liver pate last week. For several months now I’ve been making chicken curry with breasts and legs since no one really ate the spare parts or offals. But last week I bought a whole bird and was confronted with the chicken liver!