Friday, March 6, 2015

HAPPY HOLI!! Homemade Chemical-free Holi Colors

Holi is one of my favorite festivals! And this year it's even more special as it's my little Cupcake's first Holi.
Yes! I am a new mom! And that is why I have been away/slow from blogging world.
This is her first Holi and I don't want keep her away from colors but also was concerned about the chemicals used in that as she is too young for those. Finally came across this Homemade Chemical-free Holi Colors by TK @Euphoric Delight.


3 tbsp All Purpose Flour/Maida
1 tbsp Corn Starch
1 tbsp Food Color (gel form)

6-8 Drops of Astringent 


I used disposable bowls

In a bowl mix all purpose flour + corn starch + food color by hand (use gloves if you don't want color on your palm). Mix well till color is evenly mixed. Add 4-5 drops of astringent and mix again. Astringent helps darkening the color. Mix it well, no lumps. If needed add more and again mix well. Once you get evenly colored powder and astringent evaporates, your homemade color is ready!!

PS - I also further sieved the color to make really smooth powder.

colors done!

Final Result after sieving 

Enjoy Holi!!
Share your festive ideas with us HERE

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Gattey Ki Sabzi or Gatta Curry

When man of the family demands Gattey ki Sabzi, you know you are married to guy from Rajasthan. Finally I managed to make authentic Gattey ki Sabzi or Gatta Curry or Gram Flour Dumpling Curry. Rajasthan is famous for "dal-baati-choorma-gattey ki sabzi". So you know I'll be sharing other three soon! (once I learn to cook them). Rajasthani Cuisine has many dishes made with 'besan' or 'gram flour'. Reason, of course less vegetation to due climate. My MIL cooks a lot of them and I have just started learning them!


For Gatta:
Gram flour (Besan):1 cup
Crushed coriander: as per taste
Fennel (optional): as per taste
Heeng/Asafoetida: ½ tsp
Salt: as per taste
Red pepper:as per taste
Red pepper (optional):as per taste
Oil:2 tablespoon (I use olive oil in most of my cooking)
Water:1/4 cup

For Curry:
Tomato chopped
Red onion chopped 
Green chilly sliced
Garlic cloves
Bay Leaf 1
Cumin Seeds
Plain Yogurt: 1/2 cup
Salt: as per taste
Red Chilly Powder: as per taste (I use Kashmiri Mirch)
Turmeric:1 tsp
Coriander powder: as per taste
Heeng/Asafoetida: ½ tsp 
Kasoori Methi (optional):1 tsp


For Gattey:

In a bowl mix coriander, fennel, heeng/asafoetida, pepper, chilly powder and salt in besan/gram flour.
Add oil, mix well.
Add water (slowly) to the mixture to make dough (not too hard, not too soft). Apply little oil in your palms as besan sticks.

Divide the dough into four equal parts

Roll each to cylinder (like a cigar)

In a pan, boil water.
Once the water comes to boil, add cylinders to it and boil for 10-15minutes.

Take them out, let it cool down completely.
(do not discard the full of flavor water, use it to make curry)

Once cooled, cut them into bite size pieces

Fry them for 1-2minutes

Take them out and put them on paper towel to absorb extra oil. And keep aside.
(Do not discard this oil, we can use same oil to make curry)

For Curry:

Blend and puree the tomato, onion, green chilly, and garlic together.
In a pan, heat oil. Add cumin seeds.
Once they start to crackle, add heeng and bay leaf. Saute for 30seconds.
Add the puree. Add dry masalas & salt and kasoori-methi (optional).
Cook on medium heat.

Cook till water evaporates and oil separates.
Put the stove on absolute low/nearly off.

Add yogurt, mix well.

Add gattey, mix well.
after 1-2minutes, put the heat back to medium.
Add water (which we saved) according to desired consistency of gravy/curry.
Bring to boil. Cover it, switch off the stove and leave it for 5-8minutes.

Garnish with fresh coriander leaves, serve hot.

We enjoyed it with chapatti, raita and salad!


Try it soon!
And share your comments and recipes with us HERE

Monday, February 2, 2015

Minestrone Soup

Minestrone is a thick Italian soup made with vegetables, with addition of pasta. Common ingredients include beans, onions, tomatoes and vegetables. There is no set recipe for minestrone, since it is usually made out of whatever vegetables are in season. It can be vegetarian or contain meat. 
I love vegetables and soup as much as I love chicken. Recently I got a very easy & quick recipe of this soup from a friend, thanks AT of 'TummyTimes' blog. Note: I used pressure cooker for this soup.

(for me, everything was 'as per taste'; no set measurements)
Italian Seasoning

Basil; Fresh Basil leaves are better

Finely Chopped Tomatoes; LOTS, this is like the base

Finely Chopped Onions

Chopped Zucchini 

Chopped Celery

Corns; I used frozen, you may use fresh too

Pre-Boiled Kidney Beans; I like it slightly over-cooked

Pre-Boiled Pasta

Salt & Pepper to taste

note: you may add more vegetables like beans, carrot, cauliflower, etc. I had just these in my kitchen.


In the pressure cooker, add 1tsp of olive oil and heat it.
Add italian seasoning, sauté for 15seconds.
Add chopped onions, basil and tomatoes; sauté till tomatoes start turning soft.
Add vegetables, beans, salt and pepper; mix well.
Add water (according to your desired thickness) and close the lid.
Switch off the stove after 1 whistle.
Once the cooker is cooled down and steam is gone, add pasta and adjust seasonings as per taste.
Serve hot with toasted bread or croutons.

Packed with vegetables, beans and pasta, this soup is a meal in itself. We enjoyed it with 'cheese & garlic croutons' from Trader Joe's

Hope you enjoyed!
Share your recipes with us HERE

Sunday, February 1, 2015

finally APPE in an appe pan!!

Hello my friends!
Ok I admit I am not regular in postings...sorry for that!
I am trying my best to be regular.. *true*

Well these days I am hooked to a Facebook Group, 'Euphoric Delights'.
It is a food group and I highly recommend you all to join it if you are a foodie and love to cook!

I have been reading a lot and I really mean A LOT about this cookware (new to me) called 'Appe Pan' or 'Appam Patra' or 'Puff Pancake Pan' (in USA). After reading and seeing pictures of delicious 'NO OIL' recipes made in this pan, I had to get one for myself. Till now I used it to make 'no-oil/fry vadas' for Dahi Vada and 'no-oil/fry koftas' for Lauki Kofta. Finally today I made Appe using appe-pan! And trust me it was delicious, healthy and light perfect for Brunch!.
I highly recommend this pan and make these delicious appe, vadas, koftas and more!! Sharing the recipe of Appe.


1. Idli Batter, store bought/home-made
I used Shashtha Foods batter from Indian Store

2. I mixed in chopped onions, tomatoes, green chillies, coriander and grated ginger.
You may add any/more vegetable/s of your choice like bell pepper, beans, carrots, peas, etc...

3. And salt & pepper to taste.


Chop the veggies and mix well in batter with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile pre-heat your pan just by keeping it on medium heat.

Pour batter with spoon, no need to fill it till top. 
Batter will rise, pour as per your desired size

Turn gently after 5-10min 
(every stove is different, keep an eye on yours)

Should look similar to this when cooked

ta-da!! Yummy hot Appe!

We enjoyed these with green-coriander and Tamarind Chutney

Hope you liked the recipe and will enjoy too!

Share your recipes with us HERE

Friday, December 5, 2014

How to buy crib

With so many variety of Nursery Furniture available in market, choosing/buying a perfect crib for your little one isn't an easy decision. First of all you need to be convinced whether you need a crib or not, thinking of future use or may be you think since your friend's baby didn't use it so your baby won't use as well. All babies are different, you cannot really predict the future of your crib. But I believe, one should get a crib, thats the first step to make your baby independent. Yet be smart while buying one. When 3-in1 and 4-in1 cribs are available which can be converted into a toddler and full size (single) beds respectively, then why buy the simple static 1-in-1 crib. 
Story doesn't end here! Apart from choosing the kind of crib, there are a few safety instructions to be taken care of. 
  • Slats no more than 2 3/8 inches apart: Your crib should have slats that are close enough together to prevent your baby's head from slipping through or getting stuck. For quick check, a standard aluminum soda can will not go through them with ease.
  • Adjustable mattress height: Most cribs let you change the height of the crib mattress by simply raising or lowering the mattress support.
  • Stability: Give the crib a good shake in the store or after you put it together at home. If it wobbles or rattles, it may have been put together improperly. But wobbling or rattling could also be a sign that you should look for a sturdier crib. Also I think one should avoid wheels in crib.
  • Cribs with drop sides: The rule is simple: Don't use them! As of 2010, cribs with drop sides, which can be released to allow parents to access their tiny tots, are banned. Though some drop-gate cribs, which are considered safer, are still available, the general consensus is to stick with stationary sides to be safe.
  • Check Corner Posts: Crib corner posts should never be more than 1/16 inch high. If they stick up higher than that, baby’s pajamas could snag and get caught when the little one stands up in the crib.
  • Bumpers: Crib bumpers – padding that attaches to the inside railings of the crib to cushion all four sides – pose a hazard and are no longer recommended.
  • Old cribs: Cribs made before 1973, when federal guidelines went into effect, are more likely than newer models to have safety problems. Secondhand cribs may also have splinters, lead paint, discontinued (and potentially dangerous) features, or slats that are too far apart. But even models manufactured as recently as 1991 can be unsafe, so be sure to check slat space size and stability, and look out for any sharp edges, protruding metal, peeling paint, and other dangers. In fact, in 1995, after issuing a warning about the dangers of used cribs – which are responsible for about 50 infant deaths a year – the CPSC announced a roundup to crush and destroy used cribs.
  • Decorative touches: Avoid fancy decorations that can break off and pose a choking hazard. Cribs with cutout designs along the rail may look pretty, but they could inadvertently trap your baby's arm or neck. On a similar note, round cribs, which are also very popular, are not regulated by the government.
  • Teething Rails: When teething kicks in somewhere between 4 and 6 months of age, many babies become little woodchucks, gnawing away at the side of their crib for comfort. This, of course, can lead to splintering and other damage to the crib, as well as a baby with a mouth full of wood and paint chips. Though not mandatory, crib manufacturers are encouraged to include immovable plastic teething rails along the top of their cribs. There are crib teething rails available for sale separately; however, many can be removed by a curious baby with minimal effort.

-via Baby CentereBay

Cribs In Market

Hudson Crib by Serena & Lily, $395.00

Low-Rise Crib by Land Of Nods, $899.00

Sorelle Princeton 4-in-1 Convertible Crib with Changer by BabiesRus, $399.00

This is one of my favorite in terms of versatility and price!

Babyletto Hudson 3-in-1 Crib with Toddler Rail by BabiesRus, $379.99

Babyletto Mercer 3-in-1 Crib with Toddler Rail by, $399.00

Looks lovely to me!

Daphne Athena 3-in-1 Convertible Crib by, $359.00

Dream On Me Brianna 2-in-1 Convertible Crib by, $133.75

STUVA 2-in-1 Crib with drawers by Ikea$199.00

HENSVIK Crib by Ikea$99.00

High-End Cribs

Cribs by Pottery Barn Kids, starts from $400.00 onwards

Cribs by, starts $500.00-$5000.00

Cribs by (high-end), starts $400.00-$4000.00 

For more variety and pretty designs in cribs,
visit They have wide range of variety and brands!
Hope I answered many questions.
If you have more questions or have alternative answers/ideas,
please share with us HERE