Thursday, March 31, 2011


My little one loves bananas so much........................And the base for this recipe is strawberry jam from the recipe by  ( Hetal & Anuja)  and i created my own  style and used bananas instead of strawberries.


Ripe bananas - 4
Sugar – 1/4 cup                        
Fresh Lime Juice – 1 Tsp


1. Coarsely food process bananas for a chunky jam or blend for a smooth texture.
2. Add bananas , sugar and lime juice into a medium saucepan and mix well.
3. Cook on medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. Stir frequently.
4. Reduce heat to medium low  and continue cooking for 15mins minutes (until all white bubbles disappear). Stir frequently.
5. Remove from heat allow to cook for a few minutes.

6. While still warm, transfer jam to a clean and dry plastic or glass jar. Allow jam to cool completely before covering and storing in the refrigerator for up to 1 month

NOTE : You can use the recipe as a base and try it with any fruits...................................
2. If you add 1/4 tsp of citric acid it helps the jam as a preservative  and gives a longer shelf life.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011



Butternut Squash (or Pumpkin) – 1 medium size
Black Channa – 1 cup  ( soaked in water for 8hrs)
Water – 3 cups
Salt – to taste
Oil – 2 tbsp
Panch Puran -  1 tsp (Fenugreek Seeds ,Cumin Seeds , Mustard Seeds , Onion Seeds, Fennel Seeds )
Salt – to taste
Red Chili Powder – to taste
Cumin Powder – 1 tsp
Minced Ginger – 1 tbsp
Sugar – 1 tsp, (optional and to taste)


1. Wash and rinse the Channas and soak them overnight (atleast 8 hrs) with fresh water.
2. After 8 hours, rinse out the water, transfer the Channas into a pressure cooker, add Water and Salt (1/2 tbsp or to taste).
3. Close the Pressure Cooker and allow it to cook on high heat for 2 whistle.
4. Turn off the flame/heat and allow the pressure to go down by itself.
5. Open pressure cooker and drain/remove the liquid and save the Channas.

For the Subzi :

1. Wash, cut, peel, remove seeds and fiber & cube the Squash (Pumpkin) to bite size.
2. In a open pan , heat Oil on medium heat.
3. Once hot, add the Panch Puran and allow the seeds to pop and sizzle.
4. Add the cubed Squash.
5. Let it cook till 3/4th cooked.
6. Stir periodically for even cooking. The Squash needs to be a little translucent and soft .
7.Then add spices – Salt, Red Chili Powder, Cumin Powder, Ginger & Sugar.
8.  Mix well and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
9. Add in the Channas and mix and cook till the Squash is cooked all the way.
10. Turn off the flame and it’s ready to serve

Goes well with rice or roti.....................................................


“Many people will walk in and out of your life; but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart."--

Friends are our truest treasures. How many times have they: Made us laugh when we felt like crying over a bad mistake?

Because friends accept us for who we are, we gain the confidence to dream great dreams—and to make them real. Friends liven up our days with their twisted humor, their honest answers, and their ability to bear our gloating when we beat them at golf or tennis. We can even trust them with our most embarrassing secrets! What a relief it is for us to reveal our true selves to someone!

It’s no wonder, then, that medical researchers have found that those who have friends tend to be happier, healthier, and live longer than those who do not. In fact, friendship has numerous physical and spiritual benefits.



This may be the hardest part. Humans are social creatures; it's in our DNA to care about what others think of us. In the caveman days if we didn't get along or agree with others, it meant being ostracized. And being ostracized meant starvation & death. Thankfully times are different. But we are still influenced by our peers, thus the pervasiveness of peer pressure. Fight against it and be yourself. Only then will you truly find people who like you for you and not for who you pretend to be.


In my experience we all go up and down in how we feel about ourselves. If you're feeling bad about yourself, your chances of finding healthy friends is at risk. Take stock in yourself and make sure you feel good about yourself first. Only then can you radiate to others that you are someone worth knowing. If friendship is a two-way street, you are basically advertising: I am a good person and will add value to your life, just as you will add value to mine.


In doing so, you will find like-minded people and your comfort level will increase. And worst case, even if you don't, you are doing an activity that you enjoy. It's a win-win situation!


On the other hand, move outside your safe "box." Some would say, think outside the box. I say, live outside the box, at least sometimes. Give yourself permission to do something a little crazy. Maybe it's sky-diving. Or taking a SCUBA-diving class. (That's my definition of outside the box; yours might be different.) Put your toe in the metaphoric pool and you may find others doing the same. Again, at worst, you will get your adrenaline pumping and give yourself an interesting experience.


As I get older, I find the more & more I relax into something, the better I am at it. The more tense I am, the worse I am; I'm frustrated and in a bad mood and things don't work as well. I believe it's the same in friendships & relationships. Relax. Enjoy yourself and your surroundings WITHOUT the goal of having to achieve "meeting someone." It's great to have a goal in our lives. But human relationships aren't formed on a timeline. They evolve.


No, this doesn't mean you need to be a "10" to meet people. It's more about your own self-esteem and making sure you keep yourself out of the doldrums. There are many things we can't control, but you can decide to take a jog or join a volleyball club for peace of mind and exercise.


Shy people often think they have nothing to say in a conversation. My advice is, Ask Questions! People love to talk about themselves and it keeps the pressure off you to be witty or do the work of keeping the conversation going. Where are you from? What do you do? Do you like where you live? What do you think about (insert current event)?


With the internet and TV, most people are up on world/national/local events. But if you're not, it never hurts to be "in the know" so that you can include yourself in those water-cooler conversations at work.


The internet is ripe with forums and social networking. If you can think of it, there is probably a chat room somewhere for you. There are two concerns, however. The internet is great for information and sharing; however, it also has its share of trolls and bad apples, so be careful. Even more important, in my opinion, is that it's easy to get sucked into being "social" on the internet. The point of the internet should not be your total social environment; it should be a jumping off point for you to socialize with actual human beings in the flesh & blood.


Remember, friendships & relationships are not about numbers. If you only have one great friend, I think you've hit the jackpot

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Barvan Dum Aloo

Hi Guys,
I'm Veeru... Viju's husband.
Today Viju's kitchen was free for sometime, and I thought of preparing
some yummy Sunday Lunch for Viju. She Loves Potatoes.....
After some googling I got inspired by
Vah Chef Sanjay Thumma's Barvan Dum Aloo and decided to prepare
that, eventhough it is a long procedure, and complex for my cooking skills.
Here goes my preparation....

Almonds -- 8 to 10
Chat Masala -- a pinch 
Chilli powder - to taste
Coriander powder -- 1 tbsp
Jeera -- 1 tbsp
Turmeric powder -- a pinch
Green chillis -- 4 

Biryani leaves -- 2 to 3
Javitri -- 1 to 2
Cloves -- 5 to 6
Elachi -- 8 to 10
Cardamom -- 2 sticks
Raisins -- 10 to 15 

Oil -- to fry
Onions -- 1 big
Tomoatoes -- 2 big
Corriander -- 5 to 6 strands 
Ginger Garlic paste -- 1 tsp

Barvan means stuffed.
For Barvan Dum Aloo, it's better if you select long potatoes as in the pic above, so that it is easier to stuff.

Cut the onion, green chillies, almonds and corrinader into small pieces  and keep them aside.
Grind the tomatoes to paste.
Peel the potatoes, and cut them into half.
Now scoop the potatoes so that are shallow in the centre.

Now take oil in a pan, and deep fry these shallow potatoes till golden brown.

Fry the scooped out aloo pieces as well. These are used for the stuffing.
Cut the almonds into pieces.
Chop the corriander, and the green chillies as well.
Now mix the almond pieces, chat masala,  raisins, chopped coriander, chopped green chillies to the  fried potato pieces, and mix them nicely till they are bound well together.

Now take a skillet, and pour a little oil.
Add the masala items(bay leaf, javitri, cloves, elachi) and fry a little.

Add the jeera seeds as well.
Now add the onion pieces, and fry them till golden brown.

Now add a little turmeric powder and ginger-garlic paste,and fry till the raw smell is gone.

Now add the corriander powder, tomato paste, chilli powder, salt,  and cook in simmer for a few minutes.

Now add little water, cover the skillet with a lid, and let it cook till the sauce is silky.

In the mean while, stuff the mixture prepared above into the fried shallow potatoes.

Now, put these potatoes carefully into the cooking sauce.
Let it cook for some time.
Make sure that the potatoes doesn't turn upside down. If not the stuff will get dissolved in the gravy.

Add the chopped corriander, and cook for few munites.

Yummy Barvan Dum Aloo is ready to serve.....

Goes good with Rice or Roti....

I hope she likes it........ :-)

Monday, March 7, 2011



Toor dal - 1cup
Butternut squash - 1cup (cut into cubes).

Channa dal - 2tbsp
Black pepper powder - 1/2tsp
Curry leaves
Haldi - pinch


Coconut grated -2tbsp
Red chillies dry - 4
Jeera - 1/4tsp


Mustard seeds - 1/4tsp
Urad dal - 1tsp
Hing - pinch
Oil - 1/2 tsp ( We can even use coconut oil  for seasoning)


1. Wash 1cup  toor dal  and add 3cups water and let it boil for three whistles.

2. Chop the butternut squash.

3. In a pan add 2tbsp of channa dal.

4. Add the chopped squash.

5. Now add 1cup of water.

6. Add a pinch of haldi and black pepper powder.

7. Mix them nicely and allow it to boil.

8. By the time the squash is boiling we can do the grinding part.
9. Take 2tbsp of grated coconut in a spice grinder jar.

10. Add 4 redchillies and jeera.

11. Grind them to a fine paste.

12. check weather the squash is boiled.

13. Then add the boiled dal.

14. Mix well nicely and add the grinded coconut paste.

15. Add the curry leaves.

16. Heat oil in a small pan for tadka.

17. Add mustard seeds and allow them to pop.

18. Now add urad dal and let it fry till golden brown colour.

19. Add pinch of hing.

20. Pour the tadka into the dal.

21. Mix well and allow it to boil for 3mins.

22. Now the dal is ready to serve...................................

This dal is very healthy. It is important to add all the squashes in our daily cooking......

Sunday, March 6, 2011



Radish - 150gms sliced
Toor dal - 1cup
Tamarind - lemon sized
Sambhar powder - 4tsp
Water - 3cups (for boiling dal)
Curry leaves - a sprig
Hing - pinch
Haldi - 1/4tsp


Oil - 1tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2tsp
Methi seeds - 1/4tsp


1. Take 1cup of toor dal  wash the dal nicely.
2. Pressure cook the dal  for three whistles.

3. Soak the tamarind in water.

4. Slice the radish into thin slices.

5. Extract the juice from the soaked tamarind.


6.Add 4 tsp of sambhar powder  (I used homemade sambhar powder. Will post the recipe for that later) in the tamarind extract.

7. Mix the sambhar powder well.

8. Add a pinch of hing.

9. Add washed curry leaves, and salt.

10. Mix them well.

11. Add sliced radish to this mixture.

12. Allow it to boil.

13. In the mean time mash the cooked dal.

14. Once the radish is cooked add the mashed dal.

15. Take a small skillet and add oil for tadka.

16. Add mustars seeds and let then pop well.

17. Add  methi seeds and add the tadka to the sambar.

18. Yummy  radish sambhar is ready to serve................................