Idli Dosa Podi

Condiments are often times under appreciated or under estimated in comparison to main stream dishes. A pickle, a Podi (spice mix), a Thokku, a relish (sweet or savory) are what I call the simple joys of life. They seem like inconsequential bits and bobs, but when you think of it, they can elevate a dull meal, resurrect the taste buds, uplift one’s mood, bring a flurry of nostalgia or simply tickle the palate. This post is akin to “stop to smell the roses” to acknowledge the role of condiments and in particular this simple Podi, in our daily lives.

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Grated Amla (Nellikayi) Murabba

Murabba means sweetened fruit preserve and Amla Murabba is a favorite of many Indians including yours truly. All through the years we lived in the US, quite often I lamented over the unavailability of fresh gooseberries. Frozen ones never really counted for me.

So, when we moved to India almost 9 months back (the reason I have been missing from this space for all this while!), one of the things that I had to catch up on was savoring local produce from the market, to make up for all that I had missed over so many years. Continue reading

Puliyogare Gojju | Homemade Tamarind Concentrate for Puliyogare

Puliyogare gojju recipe

A 50 year old red-oxide floored kitchen; a huge bubbling baandli (kadai) sits on a gas stove next to a south facing window in the brightly lit corner of that kitchen. The white wall behind the stove turned somewhat brown is spattered with black-brown blotches. A middle aged saree clad lady stands facing the window vigorously stirring the contents of the kadai, her eyebrows cringing, her arms covered in a towel to avoid all the vicious spattering.

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Thondekai (Tindora) Godambi Sasive Anna | Ivy Gourd and Whole Cashews – Coconut Mustard Rice

Tindora Mustard Rice kadai

I have come a long way in my relationship with Thondekai (Tindora). Progressing in stages from being perfect strangers to distant acquaintances for years on end and out of the blue, to being very much in love now. Not a love story that I anticipated, but glad that it happened.

ps: Be warned of a picture heavy post.

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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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