Avalakki Chooda

Crunchy seasoned flattened rice speckled with fried peanuts

Chooda chai

Spring and Fall. My favorite seasons of the year.

There is something magical in the change of seasons. And, a zillion ways to soak in the beauty of it. I find it particularly enchanting to experience spring in small ways. Like say, seated in a reclining chair with feet up in careless abandon, in a balcony facing a thick patch of blooming trees, chirping birds in the background, a golden sunset punctuated by gentle breeze, chatting my heart away with my soul mate and kids giggling by our side, sipping piping-hot ginger chai with a side of something crunchy.

Like this Avalakki chooda.

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No-Bake Oats and Seeds energy bites

Oats and seeds bar

Hello.. Hello! Hope y’all are doing well, keeping warm and the year has been going great so far.

I am doing well too. It has been over a year since I have been away from the blog. And, for good reason. I got promoted to being a mom of two – a girl and a baby boy who is now ten months (can’t believe!). Last year has just flown by making space in our lives for our new little man, bending and mending schedules, making peace with the ever demanding sleep cycles (the hardest part!) and growing together as a family of four and parents of two. Yet, when he smiles his toothless smile and tugs at my pant trying to walk his first few steps, every bit of the rollercoaster ride seems worthwhile. Slowly and steadily as his napping schedule seems more predictable, I have the privilege of stealing some much needed time for myself to be back at this cozy space here.

And hence, THIS first post of 2015.

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Pahalakkai Poricha Kootu

Bitter Gourd rings simmered in freshly ground coconut, black pepper, tamarind gravy

Pahalakkai Poricha Kootu

I think about this all the time.

An Apple Pie or a Tiramisu, say a Chocolate pots de crème – people need no introduction on any of these dishes, let alone ask for ingredients. A mention of the dish is pretty much enough to lure anyone to grab and taste. This is true for many of us, isn’t it? How often does someone totally new to a dish from another cuisine get drawn to and motivated to cook it without a clue about its taste, especially when it is a typical traditional dish never seen in any restaurant?

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Tomato Pickle

My Mom-in-law’s recipe

The year has been moving not in days or weeks but in months. I have been occupied with a few projects (non-food and non-blog related) one after the other that kept me away from the blog. For a couple of months, I was less at home and more in my little girl’s Montessori, compiling their yearbook. It is her last year there before she moves to public school later this fall. Last day at school and saying goodbye was more painful for me than for her!

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