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  • Tuck In

    Aloo Morich | Potatoes in Chilli Oil

    It’s creepy, the way social media throws up ‘Watch This’ or ‘Read This’ suggestions. From the usual food videos, discounts by travel companies, cute baby and pet videos and sitcom snippets to the more unusual ‘trending’ and ‘viral’ videos of people barfing, crazy challenges, strange habits, there’s a constant barrage of visuals. While I’m still wondering about that string of reptile videos that popped up in the explore section on my Instagram account recently – I am not a fan of the creepy crawlies – Facebook surprised me in a good way with a commercial that popped up on my timeline. Made for a beverage company, this commercial titled ‘My…

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    Kashke Badamjan by ‘Kitchen Therapy’

    The best recipes, in my opinion, come from a mother’s memory. And she is also undoubtedly the best cook in the whole wide world. Little wonder then that I started off my culinary lessons under my mother’s loving and watchful eye. I happened to mention this to Kamini during our conversation that I’ve shared a few days ago. With the Kitchen Therapy girl sharing the same emotions, it was no pressure to ask her to share a recipe that she has been taught by her mother. She gladly handed over the recipe of a Persian dish called Kashke Badamjan that was taught to her mother by her grandmother! I made…

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    Omelette Jhol | Omelette in a Spicy Curry

    Temporary workspaces are so much fun! You move out of your personalised space and set up shop at a different location. A visit to the unknown rejuvenates the mood and makes your workspace dearer on return. I change my workspace often when back home. Pack up my little bag and head to a cafe, settle down with a new view from the corner table, order myself a cuppa and get down to work. Sometimes I even indulge myself with a gooey treat. Or a spicy one. Do I get work done? Most times, yes. But there are times when I don’t. And I’m still learning not to beat myself over…

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    Savoury Mixed Lentil Crepes

    Yes. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. So say my parents and half the world around me! But I sing a different tune. Coz for me, while breakfast is important, the mid-morning snack, lunch, evening bites, dinner and late-night craving are equally important. I don’t believe in playing favourites with meal times. No sir, not me. This forever kind of love affair that I have with meals has seen me tuck into a variety of meals, unhindered by the thoughts of side effects. Until recently, when I stepped into my 30s which automatically translates into constant reminders about eating right! It’s been a struggle to satisfy the…

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    Shorshe Salmon | Salmon in Mustard Sauce

    Nearly a decade of living in the United Kingdom has made the elder sister a good cook and an almost expert in the art of ‘kitchen substitutes’. A cheerleader for the ‘quick and easy’ meal squad, Raka (the elder sister’s name that means ‘full moon’) confesses that she has learned by trial and error. “I would crave certain Bengali dishes that we’ve (her husband included) grown up eating but would not know how to make them in England. There were missing ingredients, be it the greens or fish or spices. It took me a while but over the years, with a little guidance from my mother and late mother-in-law, I…

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    Sprouted Mung Beans Salad Bowl

    Confession: I dislike fruits, vegetables, greens, and the category. Give me some fresh fruit juice or stir fry and I will gobble up the goodness in seconds. Hand me the raw and they will remain untouched. Which means all the greens and veggies in my salads have to be hidden under the egg, the pasta or, perhaps the chicken? “It’s like trying to cheat a finicky five-year-old into eating her vegetables,” grumbles my mother who belongs to the ‘eat fresh, eat greens’ school of thoughts. The elder sister Raka has managed to strike the perfect balance in this scheme of things. But I continue to struggle in this battle of…

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    Azeri KyuKyu | Herb-ed Omelette

    There is something magical in the way eggs, whisked thoroughly, seasoned with a pinch of salt and cooked in a pat of butter or oil, can produce something as deceptively simple like an omelette. And I speak of the basic omelette. Type in the word ‘omelette’ in the search engine of your choice and it will throw up variants enough to boggle the mind. Makes you marvel at the versatility of this dish. Why? Leave alone the fancy versions, look around. Every household and each individual standing at the stove, cooking an omelette, has their particular way of making it. I’ve been missing my regular egg intake for the last…

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    Aloo Posto | Potatoes in Creamy Poppy Seed Paste

    “I’m about to board the flight/train. See you soon.”“Okay. By the way, what do you want for lunch/dinner?”“You know Maa! Moshuri daal, bhaat, ghee maakha aloo sheddo (red lentil soup, steamed rice, mashed potato seasoned with ghee and salt)” This conversation, or a version of it, is repeated each time I am on the way home after travelling for days/weeks/months. This ritual stems from the feeling of warmth and comfort that only potatoes can give. Nutritionists and dieticians have gone blue in the face urging me to stop eating this ‘fattening’ food. I’ve quit them rather than give up potatos. Sheer nonsense I tell you! Has there ever been anything…

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    Aam Dal | Red Lentil & Raw Mango Soup

    A news alert two days ago declared that the western part of India will experience monsoon “in 2-3 days”. This means me, along with scores of others, have joined a thousand others sending prayers to the rain gods! But until the rains arrive, I am busy enjoying the last of the mango rush. Like almost every Gujarati household – we are part Gujarati by virtue of the years we’ve lived here – we love mangoes. Green raw and tangy or orange fleshy juicy… we like it all. Maa does her bit to keep up with the aam (mango) demand with aam ras (mango puree), aam papdi (mango leather), aam achaar (mango pickle), aam chutney (mango chutney), aam panna (mango…

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    A Newbie’s Guide to Azeri Cuisine #Chapter2

    Did you know?# The process of making Azeri specialities dolma and flatbreads (lavash, katyrma, jupka, yufka) are inscribed in UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.# Azerbaijan cuisine boasts of more than 30 types of soups.# Black caviar from the Caspian Sea is among the most sought after in the world. Azerbaijan boasts of human settlements dating back to the Stone Age, a religious history that shows a shift from Zoroastrianism to Christianity and then Islam and an enviable cultural influence initiated by travellers who passed through the Silk Route. The violent political history combined with the above, have given Azerbaijan a unique identity.This uniqueness is reflected…