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April 20, 2015

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Tender Coconut Phirni

Tender Coconut Phirni
Tender Coconut Phirni
Previous generations referred to Kalnirnay or Panchang to find out the dates of auspicious days and festivals. Our generation gets to know of these dates from advertisements that try to lure us to spend our hard-earned mullah on gold, home appliances...pretty much anything that they're selling really. I'll admit that I get tempted by sales ads but I HATE shopping in crowded shops. I don't venture out in malls on such days, no matter how tempting the offer. So for me, festivals are pretty much like any other day, except that it may be a holiday for Kalpesh or Devansh. But I want that to change that; no, I don't mean that I want to start shopping on such days. But I want to celebrate these festivals in a way such that Devansh learns about our culture and traditions, and their significance. I started doing that with Gudhi Padwa, the first day of the new year as per Hindu calendar. We hoisted a Gudi, decorated it with neem leaves and traditional garlands of sugar candies. I made a pasta kheer, not exactly a traditional sweet but traditions can be fused with changing times, right? :-)

April 14, 2015

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Carrot Pasta in White Sauce

I usually cut and pressure cook carrots in bulk and freeze them. This saves me a lot of time when I need to make something like sweet potato, carrot, and semolina porridge or carrot parathas. Sometimes I sneak this carrot in sabzis, not because Devansh is a fussy eater but because my husband, Kalpesh is. It also comes in handy when I make carrot pasta for Devansh. With the cooked carrot ready it doesn't take more than 10 minutes to make this pasta for Devansh and he loves it.

April 09, 2015

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Lemon Coriander Peas Upma

Lemon Coriander Peas Upma
Lemon Coriander Peas Upma
Last Saturday, I was pleasantly surprised to find Devansh's breakfast ready; Kalpesh had woken up before me and had made upma. I wasn't surprised because he had prepared Devansh's breakfast; he's done that on quite a few weekends. I was surprised because it was upma. For breakfast I usually stick to some porridge or sheera because it's quick to make, plus earlier when Devansh wasn't too crazy about milk, adding it in his food was the only way to ensure he had it. Now upma doesn't take too much time to make either but Kalpesh's gourmet upma sure needed some work. You won't catch me doing that first thing in the morning. Not only had my awesome husband taken all that effort to make upma for Devansh but he had also clicked the snaps without me asking him to, and just as importantly he fed Devansh his breakfast. As most moms would agree with me, major chunk of your day goes in "feeding" your children their food.

April 05, 2015

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Pumpkin Skin Chutney

Pumpkin Skin Chutney
When I make pumpkin's sabzi, I don't throw away its skin; I use it to make this crispy chutney. This crispy and crunchy chutney acts as a great accompaniment for the soft pumpkin sabzi. Devansh loves the combination of pumpkin sabzi and this chutney; in fact he likes the chutney even by itself. While the flesh of the pumpkin is a good source of beta-carotene, which is an antioxidant, its skin has anti-fungal properties. The skin has antibacterial effect against harmful microbes and can protect us from several infections. Sesame seeds used in this chutney not only add crunch to the chutney but also pack a heavy nutritional punch. They are a rich source of copper and a good source of iron, calcium, zinc, magnesium, vitamin B1, and dietary fiber. Phew!!! So next time you use a pumpkin for cooking, don't throw away its skin. Use it to make this crunchy, crispy and healthy chutney for your family.

April 02, 2015

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Red Pumpkin Sabzi (Laal Bhoplya chi Bhaaji)

Red Pumpkin Sabzi (Laal Bhoplyachi Bhaaji)
Red Pumpkin Sabzi (Laal Bhoplya chi Bhaaji)
When I started giving sabzi-roti to Devansh for lunch, I would more often than not cook a vegetable from the gourd family—bottle gourd, pumpkin, little gourd, or snake gourd. Toddlers find these vegetables easy to chew plus they are easy to digest. Even now that he's almost four, Devansh doesn't find these sabzis boring as most of us grownups do. For instance, you won't catch my husband eating any of the vegetables mentioned above. So I make them for lunch when hubby's away for work. Pumpkins are high in water content and are a good source of minerals and vitamins, making them an ideal summer food. At the risk of sounding preachy, I would say do include this nutritional sabzi in your diet even if you find it boring, you will cultivate the taste for it. The numerous health benefits derived from it definitely make the effort worthwhile. Plus it's not a labor-intensive recipe, like most of my recipes this one too can be cooked real fast. :-)