Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Diwali 2015 :::: festival of lights!

as of 2015 ;)

Diwali is one of my favorite festivals!! We have been missing the true essence of Diwali since five years (as this blog-post was supposed to be published in 2015, clearly I have a big backlog of my posts). This year we are in India! and loving every bit of the festivity around. For my surprise, my little one year old is not afraid of all the firework sounds which I used to be! Instead she is loving to watch all *smiles*. 
I have recently started making rangoli and have been trying different mediums as there are so many restrictions in US for Rangoli, as carpet/wood flooring etc. This year I got the marble floor to make it so I decided to use poster colors (water base paints) to make it. 


This was done using sidewalk chalks; while staying at a rental here.
It was super as I was a New Mommy and my baby was about 1.5months old!!
Diwali 2014

This was similar to 2014, but in 2016 when my 2-years old Toddler wanted to help me. So we did a basic one where she can fill in colors.

By Diwali 2017, we grew up from family of 3 to family of 4, plus moved to our own home :)
Not only I had my hands full with a toddler, a baby and decorating our new home, we took our Diwali to next level. Also less of diyas and rangoli outside as our current location now becomes quite windy during that time of the year. 
So now, we have a tradition of throwing Diwali Party in our friends group, almost 10 families with mostly 2 kids each ;)

a simple rangoli using stencil for shagun

Ready for Diwali party

My big baby, now almost 5.5yrs old, making Diwali Cards for her teachers and her baby sister's daycare.

some goodies to add with cards

some decor for our guests

I created this Diwali Basket in 2019 for my neighbors

since it get windy outside, I started using a big plate for rangoli inside

thought of painting our old patio table to this... looks lovely!

What are your Diwali Rituals? 


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