Crème fraîche

Rainy days & Mondays with Parmesan

Rain Dubai

Rainy days like this are rare in a desert. And when it rains, everyone and everything gets alive and kicking, traffic included.

My ideal rainy day is to wake up as per routine, decide to skip work, snuggle back into bed and much later in the afternoon, go on a long drive, hunting for ‘pakoras‘ n ‘chai’.

Sigh! Back to reality. I did go to work and returned home to a fridge screaming at me to use its week old vegetables.

Result: Parmesan & Roasted Veggie Salad.

parmesan dubai

It turned out much better than I thought it would. Warm roasted pumpkins, brinjal (or eggplant or aubergine as you wish to call it), juicy red capsicum (okay, so they are called red peppers) and a local variant of zucchini in a balsamic vinegar dressing along with whole wheat pasta for company. Served on a bed of lettuce for some more colour effect. The star of the dish, however, were the Parmesan shavings – a generous, delicious and calorific contribution to an otherwise healthy dish.

No, those spicy Indian fritters cannot replace Parmesan or Pasta nevertheless, a bowl of this goodness provided a comforting end to a drab cold day.

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Sago Saga

An almost non-existent and under-rated breakfast option, the ‘Sabudhana Khichdi’ (also known as ‘Sago’) may not mean much in terms of nutrition but a very delectable indian snack, easy to prepare. My earliest memories of it is having it on occasional Saturdays of the month when mom used to do a ‘religious fast’ and I got to enjoy this delicious snack! Unlike other Indian breakfast options, it is not too easy to find across indian eateries but  a very popular dish in the western state of Maharashtra.

Many many years later, I decided that it was time to make it myselt. And it turned out better than I thought it would!

sagoLink to a recipe.

Eat it hot. Best made and had on a lazy Saturday morning with yoghurt and a cup of masala chai,

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Hot cross buns…

…or so I’d like to think. But apart from a very feeble cross I made on top of them, they are just plain simple country buns. It’s just that I’m so chuffed about how nicely they turned out, this being my very first attempt with breads. Crunchy on the outside and super soft inside. It aint as ’round’ as it should be but I think that just makes it look rustic! With all the health alerts and brown/wholemeal breads in the market, it has been ages since I have had good ol’ white bread. So this couldn’t have been a better comeback. Yum! (Well, a little self-gloat never hurt anyone, did it?) 😉

I randomly picked up this recipe off the internet since it appeared to be the quickest one and followed it to a tee. Et voilà!

Buns

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Goin’ nuts over Granola

I finally got to making my own granola after concluding that the Nestlés and Kelloggs of the world weren’t even half as healthy as they proclaimed to be, and the ones that seemed genuine were priced exorbitantly. And so, I investigated and stumbled upon a couple of websites and had a go at it.

Result: Making your own granola is RIDICULOUSLY easy!

So basically, I zeroed in on the Barefoot Contessa recipe and then did my own thing. That is, I reduced the amount of sugar (even replaced with honey a couple of times), didn’t have a stock of berries so added some lemon zest. I am citrus-crazy, in case you didn’t know. Give me a lime and I will eat the whole fruit without batting an eyelid!

Oats granola barefoot contessa

My recommendation:

  • Layer a flat-base bowl with low fat/skimmed yoghurt (as much as you want!)
  • Add chopped strawberries and apples on top of it
  • Keep in the chill tray for an hour or so (I go to work and keep it straight inside the frigo)
  • Remove it and add a generous layer of granola 
  • Slice into the whole thing and have a spoonful. Yumminess redefined.
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Chocolate Fudge

As someone rightly said, “Anything is good if it is made of chocolate”

A few bars of dark chocolate made-to-melt, condensed (sweetened) milk, sugar and some nuts thrown in. Along with copious amounts of love and craving!

That, my dears, sums up this calorific Choco-nut fudge.

chocolate fudge

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Summer salad

Greedy me! I sliced open the first mango of the season waiting to eat into the juicy flesh only to discover that it was still not ripe enough. I hate wasting food, and hence the mango salad- quite a nice way to bring in the summer!

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A bit of lettuce and cucumber along with some olive oil and honey mustard dressing garnished with chilli flakes & coriander did the trick for a simple & quick salad, however for all you meat eaters dying for that missing taste, just add in some prawns!

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Verry Berry Cookies

Oatmeal cookies with berries!

Very berry tasty, and may I say a tad healthy too 😉

berry

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‘Spiced’ Carrot tea cake

…with (more than) a hint of orange zest.

 

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