C is for Coastal Food


Coastal Food in India is all about the coconuts! It finds its place in almost every dish that the region has to offer- whether it’s savory or sweet.  It gives a nice touch to the dish , although I cannot stand its overuse.  It makes the coconut redundant and ordinary.

It’s dinner time , there’s Wimbledon on the telly and there’s my loving hubby for company . It called for a weekend indulgence.  Rice and Chicken it was.  But not any Rice and Chicken . A nice coconut rice dish and some spicy chicken curry .

Today to my rescue came Chandra Padmanabhan  She’s written some amazing books on recipes from South India . Her recipes always turn out sumptuous . Infact her books have helped a great deal to help me learn South Indian cooking .

This week for me has started on a sad note to see my favorite tennis player Rafa Nadal crash out of Wimbledon . But cooking food and a good Harry Styles song always makes me feel better . 🙂 By the way , I am near obsessed with his song Kiwi these days . :):)

Till next time then XXX


Rainy Day is Brownie Day!


Yes , the rain gods have been in overdrive for the past couple of days in Mumbai . These are the days when the body and the bed become best mates and don’t seem to leave each other 😉 The tummy longs for not so healthy versions of foods and the chocolate cravings are messing with your rational being

And Boom! Chocolate Brownies from Donna Hay  to the rescue. Frankly I wasn’t in the mood for some fancy recipe . All I needed was a bowl , a spatula and an oven to work up the magic for me . Chocolate , sugar , brown sugar , cocoa , eggs , flour and milk . I like to add a bit of instant coffee for that extra kick , and top it with coffee ice- cream.
Donna’s recipes are my best friend on such days 🙂

So as the rains were quenching the earth ,  Chocolate took an immaculate form in brownies to satiate my soul.. Whew that was heavy!! i love chocolate…that’s simpler isn’t it. You get the drift , don’t ya ?


Yummy Treats for Eid!

Eid ul-Fitr “festival of breaking of the fast” is an important religious holiday celebrated worldwide that marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting. It’s the time when relatives and friends get together and enjoy scrumptious feast. Sweets and desserts make for an important part of the feast and often take centre stage on this auspicious day. On this occasion, FunFoods by Dr. Oetker recommends tasty desserts which are mouthwatering, easy to make, and would allow you to enjoy the festival as well with your loved ones.

Strawberry and Dates Roll

Strawberry and Dates Roll Recipe by Chef Ranveer Brar, Creative Kitchen, Dr. Oetker FunFoods

Servings: 4


10-12 nos. Dates, seedless

75 g (5 tbsp) Dr. Oetker FunFoods Strawberry Dessert Topping

50 g Almonds, chopped

50 g Cashewnuts, chopped

5-6 nos. Marie Biscuits, crushed

50 g (3 tbsp) Desiccated Coconut Powder


  1. In a blender jar, add dates and 2 tbsp strawberry dessert topping. Blend for 20-30 seconds or until you get a coarse paste.
  2. Take out above mixture in a bowl and add nuts. Mix well, make small round balls and shape them into cigars or cylinders.
  3. In a bowl mix together biscuits and 2 tbsp coconut powder.
  4. Dip above rolls in remaining strawberry dessert topping and finally put them in biscuit mix to get good coating all over.
  5. Put remaining coconut powder on top of rolls and serve cold.

Preparation time: 15 Minutes



Shahi Lucknowi Seviyaan

Shahi Lucknowi Seviyaan Recipe by Chef Ranveer Brar, Creative Kitchen, Dr. Oetker FunFoods 

Servings: 2


500 ml Full Cream Milk

50 g Almonds, chopped

50 g Cashewnuts, chopped

60 g Roasted Vermicelli

1 tbsp Condensed Milk

1 tbsp Sugar

50 g (3 tbsp) Dr. Oetker FunFoods Milk Shake Mix Kesar Pista

½ tsp Kewra Water

1 tbsp Pistachio, chopped


  1. Heat saucepan (low flame) add milk, almonds, cashewnuts and vermicelli. Let it cook for 5 minutes or until milk starts to boil.
  2. Add condensed milk, sugar and milk shake mix. Cook for 5 minutes or until Milk shake mix is dissolved completely and mixture is thick in consistency.
  3. Pour kewra water and mix well. Garnish with pistachio and serve.

Preparation Time: 5 Minutes

Cooking Time: 10 Minutes



Mayo Phirni

Mayo Phirni Recipe by Chef Ranveer Brar, Creative Kitchen, Dr. Oetker FunFoods

Servings: 4


1 Litre, Full Cream Milk

90 g (6 tbsp) Rice Flour

140 g Sugar

1 tsp Green Cardamon Powder

8-10 nos. Cashewnuts, chopped

5 nos. Almonds, chopped

60 g (4 tbsp) Dr. Oetker FunFoods Veg Mayonnaise


  • Heat milk in a pan (medium flame) until it comes to boil and then simmer for 1-2 minutes.
  • Add rice flour, sugar, cardamom powder and cashewnuts. Stir continuously to prevent lumps.
  • Continue stirring on low flame for 6-7 minutes or until it begins to thicken. Finally take it out from flame and let it cool down.
  • Add mayonnaise to above mixture and mix well.
  • Pour the mixture into serving bowls. Refrigerate it for 2 hours, garnish it with almonds and serve.

Preparation Time: 5 Minutes

Cooking Time:  25 Minutes


Gulab Kheer

 Gulab Kheer Recipe by Chef Ranveer Brar, Creative Kitchen, Dr. Oetker FunFoods

Servings: 4


1 Litre, Full Cream Milk

100 g Rice, washed and soaked for 30 minutes

100 g Sugar

1 tsp Green Cardamon Powder

8-10 nos. Cashewnuts, chopped

60 g (4 tbsp) Dr. Oetker FunFoods Milk Shake Mix Rose

5 nos. Almonds, chopped


  • Bring milk to boil in a large saucepan.
  • Add rice, sugar, cardamom powder, cashewnuts and rose milk shake mix. Simmer over low heat until the mixture thickens and the rice is cooked completely.
  • Pour the mixture into serving bowls. Refrigerate it for 2 hours, garnish it with almonds and serve.

Preparation Time: 5 Minutes

Cooking Time:  25 Minutes

 Hope you enjoy these yummy treats this EID.:) 


Mumbai Monsoon Essentials

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Seems like the monsoons have finally hit Mumbai. Yea , the usual follows ….Oooh Romantic walks , the romantic talks , traffic , potholes , train delays , flooding , intense conversations with self , sudden energy after the sapping heat .,,,Lonavala , …and then therez food!! . The rains bring in a very weird mix of problems and mush.

As cliche as it may sound the Vada Pav , Bhajiyyas and Samosas , get a sudden boost of  popularity during this time of year. Not that they don’t sell during the rest of the year . Its just that the rains confer on them almost a “must-do” kind of aura . Yes and they are paired of with tea, which sounds very wine pairing-ish. (Although , it’s a sure formula for crazy acidity) , But because tradition demands to be followed we do .

Today I want to feature the Vada Pav and the Moong Dal Bhajjiya from Chembur 🙂 Its a roadside stall that sells only for a couple of hours . Its almost like your life depended on it if you don’t get your share of his wares. It feels like the Zara of street food!

But we all love it , with whatever gastronomical discomforts our street food gifts us ..Coz therez always Digene!

Soak yourself . Have the time of your life . Loads of love XX


Kuch Thanda Ho Jaye


Ice creams are dessert for me . its amazing how much you can play around with . My daughter is a big fan of ice cream , although her world revolves around the most favoured flavour in the world i guess – CHOCOLATE!!

I got really inspired by Gemma Stafford  and her simplicity with which she makes ice cream. I took her ice cream base and experimented . I came up with Rose , Mint n Choco Chips ( I borrowed Gemma’s recipe here) and Coffee with Salted caramel.

My favorite one was Coffee with Salted Caramel. Used the Indian Filer Coffee here for a strong coffee kick . The Salted Caramel complements it nicely .

Ice Creams for the family have always been about great conversations and choosing your own flavour.  I love noticing people choosing their flavours at ice cream parlours . Yea just a weird side to me I guess 😉

Ciao XXX


An India-Pak Final needs loads of ENERGY!!

Its the Champions Trophy Finals on Sunday. And what better than an India Pak Final . Emotions run high , Stress levels are high ..its only fair enough that the energy levels are high to cope up with the stress!!!

I came up with some things to munch during the match and created a platter of sorts. All spiced with the Indian Spice Kick!


Well Well , whats on the platter.

There’s Egg Kabab. – Essentially a boiled egg , wrapped in spiced mashed potato and fried. You can season the potato with anything you like . I did with Onions , red chilli powder , tumeric , graram masala and some mozarella . It’s quite filling and its loads a punch in taste.

Then I’ve made two brushettas, one with Tandoori Chicken and the other with Cottage Cheese (Paneer) Stir fried the chicken with Onion tomatoes and spices and plopped in on a toasted bread.  Grilled the cottage cheese and topped with seasoned tomatoes

Potato and Pea Croquettes – Mashed potatoes and peas mixed with onions , nutmeg , salt , pepper , coriander and chillies. Have slid a cube of mozzarella inside for that cheesy goodness when you bite in !

Masala Popcorn and  Blue Curacao Lemonade make the perfect accompaniments. Have put a Salsa and Tzatziki for the extra punch. And yes therez always chocolate for sweet endings .

Bleeeed Blue!!!! Lets go Boys!! India , India !!!!!


Relishes are the those magical additions to any dish that take it up notches higher. I love having a good relish / chutney with almost anything I eat! They’re simple , quick and packed with flavor. India has loads of chutneys to choose from  You travel to any part of the country and they will have their own chutneys .  We eat chutneys with anything from snacks to curries to biryanis. And if its like someone like me , I eat it just like that. They’re my Nuttella 🙂 I have several jars that I just dig into when hunger strikes.

Chef Kunal Kapur is one of my favorite from India. I love his recipes. It allows you to innovate and put a bit of you in the recipe! In his book, A Chef in every home , I came across two chutneys that were really different and could lend their flavours beautifully as accompaniments. I’ve played around a bit with them.

I tried the Pineapple Chutney and an Aubergine Chutney . I must say they were refreshing , fresh and bursting with flavour .


The Pineapple Chutney is lightly flavoured with spices like red chilly powder or you might use paprika . I’ve given it a little more hint with star anise and cloves .  As all the ingredients lend their taste while simmering beautifully , what you get is a chunky summer treat that would go well with a lot of finger foods . I would even go further and add it to some of my salads just for that extra kick . Its got sugar , vinegar salt and spices. You can play around with the spices to make this dish your’re own.

The Aubergine Chutney is one robust fella. The humble vegetable just get a great lift with the addition of tomatoes , curry leaves , cumin , onion seeds , jaggery , tamarind and peanuts.   Its great for pairing with breakfast items like pongal / khichdi , dosas , idlis , maybe rice too . Couldn’t stop lickin the spoon , the tamarind , spices and jaggery give a heady taste of sweet , sour and spicy . A must try

Until next time guys … and remember “First we eat, then we do everything else  😉 XX
Continue reading Relish!