Gulab Pitha/ Gulap Pitha

Long time, blog readers! Anyways nice time of the year to get back isn’t it? Deepavali or Diwali is just tomorrow and it’s almost a sin if u don’t dish out a sweet or two! So, here is something that I tried out this Diwali. it’s something that I bookmarked from Pinterest almost an year ago and had been mustering courage to try it out. Yes, it seemed very difficult and intricate but trust me, it’s not that tough and if you have little bit of patience you can easily amaze your friends and family with this amazing sweet!
The sweet is an authentic Bangladeshi sweet. I have never tasted it before but went thru almost all the recipes that are available in the blogosphere and almost all of them follow the same measurements.
‘Gulab Pitha’/ ‘Gulap Pitha’ is sweet made of all purpose flour/ maida and is shaped like a rose flower filled with sugar syrup. Needless to say it was so indulgent. Let’s get to the recipe now.


1.Maida – 1 Cup

2. Whole milk – 1 Cup

3. Salt – a pinch

4. Sugar – 1 Cup

5. Water – 2 Cups

6. Rose Essence – 3 drops

Step by Step instructions

1. Boil 1 cup of milk with a pinch of salt

2. When the milk starts to boil, add maida little by little and stir. The milk and maida will form a crumbly dough. Don’t worry about any lumps being formed

3. Switch off the flame and mix the milk-maida dough

4. Let it cool down to room temperature or till your fungers can handle the heat.

5. Spread some ghee or oil on your fingers and spend next 10 mins in kneading the dough

6. It will be a soft dough. now separate the dough into balls. 1 cup of maida will yield around 12 big balls

7. Take the chapathi rolling plank and dust it with flour. Take a maida ball, roll it into a thin roti. Now we have to cut circles with a diameter of 6cm. For this you may use a cookie cutter. I just used the small porcelain cup that I had but I suggest using something with a sharp edge

8. Take three circles

9. Sprinkle some flour on them

10. Stack them together

11. Now with a knife make four slits so that the circle is divided into sectors but you have to leave some 2cm in the center

12. Place the circles on the counter. Now fold one petal (one sector) so that it forms the inner most petal for the rose

13. Next fold the petal right opposite to the one you folded. You have to fold it around the petal you just folded

14. After folding the top and bottom petals, fold left and right petals around the petals already folded

15. Continue folding all the petals in the same fashion

16. Now that a rose flower is completed, place it on a plate

17. Boil water and sugar in a pan till the sugar melts. Add rose water and let it simmer in low flame

18. Heat oil in a kadai. When the oil is hot, carefully add the rose flower to the oil and fry it till golden brown in low flame

19. Take the flower out of oil and let the oil drain in a tissue paper

20. Now the flower has to be dipped in the simmering sugar syrup. Spoon the syrup into the flower, make sure it’s well coated and take it out

21 place the flower on a serving plate and serve it hot or cold!

Here is a video showing how to make the flowers

Please note:

1. 1 cup maida gives 11 to 12 flowers

2. Fry the flower in low flame and keep turning the flower so that the inside of the flower is also well cooked


Zucchini, Carrot Noodles


Back to my space after a long long time! Thanks to all those wonderful readers who still check back for updates. So many things had been going on in personal life that i could think about thd blog.
Today i am back with a light, healthy and almost no cook dinner recipe. I recently purchased an awesome handy kitchen toy. Its called SpiraLife Vegetable Spiralizer. It carves out noodles from zucchini, carrot, potato and almost all root vegetables. I prepared zucchini noodles, carrot noodles, potato noodles. Tossed some soy sauce and tomato sauce and dinner was ready in few minutes. what an awesome way to consume vegetables! Also, the cleanup was a breeze and it fitted well along with my spoons.

You may prepare a simple pesto sauce by combining basil, pine nuts and olive oil with a dash of pepper.

Don’t my ‘noodles’ look great?

The product is available in

SpiraLife Vegetable Spiralizer and Recipe eBook – Durable Composite Design – 2 Blade Sizes

Idly upma

Idly upma
Idly is the safest food for babies and its great for travel. Idly is a staple at my home, only after dosas and my son’s fav semiya upma.

Some evenings we end up with left over idlies from breakfast . Since we have this habit of consuming only fresh food, we don’t enjoy the left over idlies. That is when the idly upma comes to the rescue. It gives an awesome makeover to regular idlies.

idly upma

1.Left over idlies – 8
2. Onion -1
3. Green capsicum -1/2
4. Mustard seeds -1/4 tsp
5. Urud dal – 1 tsp
6. Asaefiatida – 1 pinch
7. Milagai podi – 1 tbspn
8. Salt to taste

1. Sprinkle some water on the idlies and crumble idlies to smaller fragments
2. Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds. Once it splutters, add urud dal and fry till the dal is golden brown. Add asafoetida
3. Add onion and salt. Once onion turns golden add finely chopped capsicum
4. Add crumbled idlies and mix well
5. Finally mix in the idly milagai podi and mix well with a spring of curry leaf

* The idly might be dry to crumble. Sprinkle some water on the idlies to make them soft. Then you can crumble them very easily.
* You can experiment with other veggies but I have always felt the onion capsicum combination the best

‘Cream Centre’ Style Broccoli n Cheese Bites

‘Cream Centre’ Style Broccoli n Cheese Bites 

Are you from India? Have you been to a popular restaurant called ‘Cream Centre’? If not, you have really been missing out on some delectable food. If you have, you probably know what I am talking about.

broccoli n cheese bites

Cream Centre has an awesome American corn n cheese balls in their starter menu. They are crispy on the outside. Once you take a bite, you are treated to cheesy melted goodness. The only other place to have this on their menu was the Newyorkers restaurant in Chennai. I was very sad when they closed down. Last year when I went to Chennai, I was happy to discover Cream Centre. Recently a friend of mine mentioned that Newyorkers is operational again at Khader Nawaz Khan road in Chennai. Between Cream Centre and Newyorkers, I don’t really know whose Corn n Cheese balls I love the most. Let’s just say that I love cheese balls.

broccoli n cheese bites

I have been trying to come up with a similar recipe for a while. I finally perfected the recipe after umpteen trials. As it is Children’s day, I decided to make these yummy bites with broccoli n cheese which is a kids favorite. It turned out to be a very simple and easy recipe and gets done pretty quickly. Though it is quick, there is no compromise on taste. It is a great evening snack for kids n adults alike.. Especially with the weather getting colder day by day, these are awesome bites of melted goodness that can be served at tea.

Instead of deep frying I used my Aebleskiver Pan so that the oil consumption was very less.


1. Mozzarella Cheese – 3 tbspn

2. All purpose flour (maida) – 1 tsp

3. Broccoli flowers – 1/4 cup

4. Salt – very less

5. Red Chilli powder – 1/2 tsp

6. oil to deep fry

7. Coriander leaves – 1 spring (finely chopped)


1. Boil broccoli flowers in water along with a pinch of salt. I microwaved 1/4 cup brocolli along with water and salt for 3 minutes. You can use the pressure cooker and just boil the broccoli in water

2. In a mixing bowl, mix together mozzarella cheese, maida, red chilli powder, boiled and mashed broccoli flowers, finely chopped coriander leaves into a fine dough. If needed add very little water

3. Check for saltiness and add salt if needed

4. Heat the Aebleskiver pan. Add a tsp of oil in each of the moulds

5.  Pinch the dough and prepare small balls

6. Once the oil is hot, place the balls carefully inside the moulds. After 2 minutes, with a spoon carefully turn the cheese balls

7. Once the cheese balls are evenly browned on all sides, transfer them to a bowl lined with a paper towel

8. Yummy Broccoli n Cheese bites are done. You can enjoy them as such or with tomato sauce


* Deep fry the cheese balls right before serving. Otherwise the cheese will not be melted on the inside.

* The dough should be tight so add no water or very less water to make the dough. The water in the boiled, strained, broccoli was enough to form a dough

* You can try the same recipe with mashed corns instead of broccoli. In fact, Cream Center serves corn n cheese balls.

* The key is to add a lot of cheese and keep the flour to the minimal quantity. When you prepare larger batches, adjust quantities accordingly


Veggies and Cashew Basil Pesto Lasagna Pasta

Veggies and Cashew  Basil Pesto Lasagna Pasta

When I searched my pantry for an ingredient last week,  I was surprised by the random items I had to wade through. In between the packets of toor dal and urud dal were hidding a half used box of Lasagna, a box of spiral pasta, a sushi making kit, Ethiopian Beri Beri spice, a whole big box of buckwheat, flax seed flour, amaranth, quinoa and much more.  I decided to start a pantry cleaning exercise.

Lasagna Pasta

First comes the half used box of Lasagna pasta. According to wiki, “Lasagne (/ləˈzænjə/ or /ləˈzɑːnjə/ or /ləˈsɑːnjə/, Italian pronunciation: [laˈzaɲɲe], singular lasagna) are a wide, flat pasta shape, and possibly one of the oldest types of pasta. The word also refers to a dish made with several layers of lasagne sheets alternated with sauces and various other ingredients.”

My son loves Pasta. Everyday when I ask him what he would like to have for dinner, bang comes the answer – ‘Paaasshta’! That’s not just for dinner he would have pasta any time of the day. You might think it must be an easy job for me to just dish out a multigrain pasta load it with cheese and veggies and sit back and relax with a book as my son devours the absolute healthy meal.Sadly, Its not as easy as you would expect. He hates cheese. Pesto is the only acceptable sauce. So far he hasn’t been very picky about veggies so I am saved on that front. With these filters, I often try to prepare pasta with a mix of veggies, a rich pesto with basil cashews butter and I also sneak in cheese. This probably explains the low cheese in the photos below. So here is how i prepared this Lasagna pasta that my son loved..

Lasagna Pasta


1. Lasagna Pasta (I used almost 8 sheets and it served 3 people)

2. Boiled mixed veggies (I used brocolli, green beans, white carrots)

3. Onion – 1/2 finely chopped

4. Tomato – 1

5. Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp

6. Red chilli powder – 1/4 tsp

7. Cumin powder – 1/4 tsp

8. Salt to taste

9. Oil/ butter to saute

10. Shredded Mozzarella Cheese – 1 cup

Basil Cashew Pesto 

1. Basil leaves – 1 pack

2. Cashews – 1/4 cup

3. Pepper powder – 1/4 tsp

4. Salt to taste

5. Mozzarella Cheese – 1/8 cup

6. butter 1 tsp

Lasagna Pasta


1. Heat water in a wide sauce pan. Add salt and place the Lasagna sheets in a slanting fashion. Once the sheet immersed in water is cooked, the rest of the uncooked pasta will move into water. You can add water upto the middle of the sauepan so that water is enough to boil the pasta and not spill over

2. Boil Carrots, brocolli and beans in water with little salt and keep the veggies aside

3. In a small pan, heat butter. Add finely chopped onions, tomatoes with required salt.

4. When the tomatoes turn mushy add the boiled veggies. Add turmeric powder, chilli powder and cumin powder and mix well

5. Prepare pesto sauce by grinding together all the given ingredients with necessary salt. Keep in mind that we are adding salt to the veggies and pasta also

Lasagna Pasta

Lasagna Pasta


6. Once the pasta is done, pre heat the over to 350 F. Grease cake or bread tray with butter. Place a sheet of cooked pasta lining the inside of the tray. Top with the veggies.  Now cover the veggies with two pasta sheets vertically.

7. Top this layer with the pesto sauce and little bit of cheese

8. Cover this layer with another pasta sheet covering horizontally and top it with a layer of veggies and so on. When you are left with one sheet to go, cover the veggies with the sheets spilling over the pan like you are wrapping them. Now place the final sheet and cover it with cheese

9. Back the pasta for 30 mins. When the cheese is slightly brown, you can take the pasta out and serve

Hope you liked my simple vegetarian pasta. Do let me know your comments

Lasagna Pasta

Oats Tutti Fruiti Cookies

Oats Tutti Fruiti Cookies

oats tutti cookie

I prepared these ‘Oats Tutti Fuiti Cookies’ topped with Ferero Rocher for this Halloween. Though we don’t celebrate Halloween, I wanted to prepare something nice for the kids who come trick or treating to our house. I had been frequently baking these cookies which I got from Sharmi’s Passions. This time I prepared with a small twist – I added 1/4 cup of coconut flakes and really liked the subtle taste of coconut in the oats cookie. As it was for kids, I placed a Ferero Rocher truffle on the cookies. You can use any other truffle or even skip the chocolate. Its very nice way to get kids and adults take oats. This cookie recipe is a keeper.

This year we also tried our hand at ‘Pumpkin Carving’. DH came up with an innovative idea of carving Lord Ganesha on a pumpkin. Take a look at the final outcome. Looks great, right?

pumpkin carving

pumpkin carving


Ok, back to the cookies recipe.. Here you go..

Oats Tutti Fruiti Cookie



Oats – 3/4 cup
Wheat Flour – 1/4 cup
Coconut flakes – 1/4 cup
Unsalted Butter – 1.5 tbsp
Milk – 2 tbsp
Demera Sugar – 1/4 cup
Tutti Frutti – 1/3 cup
Vanilla Essense – 1/4 tsp


Ferrero Rocher or any other truffle for topping (Optional)


Oats Tutti Fruiti Cookie Making

1. Grind Demera sugar, if using (Normal white sugar works well too). Mix oats, wheat flour, coconut flakes, sugar, tutti fruiti, vanilla essence

2. Add butter and mix well without lumps

3. Add milk and mix well to form a tight dough

4. Make even sized balls out of the dough

5. Pre heat oven to 350 F. Grease a cookie tray with butter.Flatten the dough balls into cookies. With your thumb make a small indent on the cookies so that the chocolate can be kept after the cookies are done.

Oats Tutti Fruiti Cookie Making


6. Place the cookies in the greased tray

7. Bake the cookies for 15 minutes.

8. Once the sides start to brown, remove the tray from the oven. Before the cookies cool down, place the chocolate truffle on the cookies

9. Within a few minutes the chocolate will melt slightly, Once the cookie comes to room temperature, enjoy cookies with a cup of coffee or milk.

oats tutti cookie

Hawaiian Pineapple Curry

Hawaiian Pineapple Curry

A different creamy curry made of pineapples, peas and coconut milk. Easy to cook and tastes great with soft chapathis.

Hawaiian Pineapple Curry

If you are like me, who doesn’t enjoy a lot of sweets and at the same time cant tolerate a lot of heat and really like a mix of hot and sweet, prefer tangy food, love pineapples and  like Indo Chinese cuisine, you would love this recipe. When I came across this recipe in Chef Mallika Badrinath’s cook book, I immediately gave it a try and was so impressed with the results. This recipe does not use onion, tomato and potatoes. So its a great different ‘curry’ recipe if you are bored of eating the same old onion tomato based curry.

The recipe calls for unripe pineapple but I have always used fully ripe pineapple. It still tastes great as a conglomeration of heat, sweet n tang.This recipe uses 5 green chillies. Initially I was hesitant as I normally use 1 chilli but at the end I was glad that I did use 5 chillies. Since the thick and creamy coconut milk balances the heat, you don’t have to worry about the heat and add 5 or even step up to 6 Thai chillies. The original recipe involves grinding coconut and extracting the milk but i just used canned coconut milk.

When you taste the curry, you are first greeted by the creamy aromatic coconut curry and when you take a bite of the well cooked pineapple and experience the slight sweet and tang, its a blissful culinary experience. Cook this up for dinner and you sure will have a satisfying hearty meal.

Pineapple -1 cut into medium sized squares
Coconut milk -1 can
Frozen peas thawed -1/2 to 1/4 cup depending on your taste
Salt to taste
Cumin powder 1 tbspn
Coriander powder 1 tbspn
Oil to saute
Cinnamon stick

To grind together:
Coconut powder or flakes -1/4 cup
Thai chillies – I used 5. You can step up the heat to 6 chillies. The heat will be manageable if the other ingredients in the said ratio
Ginger 1/2 inch
Poppy seeds 1 and half tsp
2 tsp of water


pineapple curry making
1. Grind the items given above as ‘To grind together’ into a paste
2. Heat oil in a deep pan
3. Temper cinnamon stick
4. Add pineapple pieces and saute for 2 mins
5. Add coriander powder, cumin powder and saute
6. Dissolve 1/4 cup of coconut milk in water and add it to the pineapple pieces
7. Let this boil for 5 minutes so that the pineapple is cooked
8. Add salt, the ground paste and thawed peas and saute
9. Add some water and let it boil for 5 mins
10. Add the thick coconut milk and mix well. Once this comes to a boil, remove from flame and garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves
11. Creamy n tasty pineapple curry is ready. Serve with soft chapathis.

Hawaiian Pineapple Curry

2 Min Mug Cake (Eggless)

2 Min Mug Cake (Eggless)

Yes this is all done in 2 mins! Well relishing time not included 🙂 read on..


Mug cake

There are almost a million microwave mug cake recipes on the internet but i have never bothered to try any of them. We are not the family that would want to have cake every week. But once, it so happened that it was my Hubby’s bday and I would have completely spoiled it if not for this cake. Being the procrastinator I am, I forgot to buy the gift he wanted. Not only that, I was too busy with my baby and chores that I couldn’t make anything sweet. It all boiled down and stood like a big monster in front of me at 11pm on my hubby’s bday eve.

That’s when I vehemently searched for microwave mug cake recipes n got this one or should I say unearthed treasure! It works like a charm. It has no eggs but its so moist and fluffy!

As my hubby was working on his laptop, I went in to the kitchen and started putting the ingredients together. Hubby later said that he thought I was doing the dishes or cleanup. I could get the batter ready in a minute – no fancy equipment is needed.all that I used was a bowl, spoon and a mug. I spent the next one min microwaving.Hubby prob thought I was warming milk. I was so surprised how the cake was really there in front my eyes in 1 min 🙂

Finally the reveal part. It was 11:55 pm.. I walked up to him with the mug. He looked up and asked, milk ? And saying so he saw the mug and cried wow what’s this!!

I wished him a happy bday and presented my cake :). The cake turned out so moist and I must say that he was completely bowled over 🙂

So here is my 2 min chocolate mug cake. I got the recipe from here

Mug cake

Ingredients: (for 1 mug)

1. All purpose flour (Maida) or pastry flour 1/4 cup

2. Sugar 3 tbspn

3. Oil 2 tbspn

4. Milk 1/4 cup and 1 tbspn

5. Cocoa powder 2 tbspn ( I used Ghirardelli hot cocoa powder)

6. A small piece of chocolate – I used a half snickers bar

7. Baking powder 1 pinch (if you use all purpose flour, add 1/4 tsp of baking powder)

8. Salt 1/4 tsp


1. In a bowl mix all dry ingredients except the chocolate bar

2. Add oil and milk and mix well without any lumps

3. Now choose a nice deep mug

4. Pour half of this batter into the mug

5. Break the chocolate bar and drop it into the mug

6. Pour the remaining batter on the top of the chocolate

7. Place the mug in microwave for 1 min. You will see that the cake has risen to the top and bubbles

8. Microwave for 10 more seconds. Insert a toothpick and if it comes out clean your cake is done

9. Enjoy!!

Please note

* When you use maida (all purpose flour), add 1/4 tsp of baking powder and for cake using pastry flour, add just a pinch of baking powder

* If the cake still looks bubbly on the top, that’s ok. Since this cake is very moist it tends to look like that

* Make sure that that batter is filled  only up to half of the mug otherwise the cake will spill over the mug

* You can use any variety of chocolate. Even add 1 tsp of instant coffee powder to make a coffee flavored cake

* This cake is ideal to greet surprise guests. It takes less time to make than coffee.

*You can portion control late night chocolate or cake cravings with this cake.

* This hot n moist cake is perfect for the cold weather days


Saag Aloo

Saag Aloo

Saag Aloo is a close relative of Saag Paneer which is a varaiation of Palak Paneer. Growing up in Chennai, I never had saag paneer or saag aloo. Palak paneer was widely available and loved. When we moved to US, that’s when I came across Saag Paneer. While palak paneer uses ‘palak’ leaves, Saag paneer and Saag aloo use spinach and mustard greens. What are Mustard Greens? Are they good for our health? read on…

Saag Aloo

Please read the following article from Whole Foods.

Mustard greens have high cholesterol lowering ability. Are rich in Vit C, E, A and K. Its a good detox and an antioxidant. It is anti inflammatory which aids support in cardio vascular problems.


Saag Aloo

With spinach and mustard greens both in this dish, I must say its a very tasty and healthy dish

Saag Aloo


1. Spinach – 1 bunch (Cleaned in water. I soak my spinach in water  for 10 mins so that all the mud comes out)

2. Mustard Greens – 1 bunch

3. Green Chillies – 2

4. Medium sized onions -2 (cut into half moons ref pic 1)

5. Medium sized tomatoes – 2 (i used roma tomatoes – ref pic 2)

6. turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp

7. red chilli powder – 1/2 tsp

8. coriander powder – 1 tsp

9. salt to taste

10. Potatoes – 4 boiled and chopped into big pieces

11. Cinnamon – 1 stick

12. Cumin Seeds – 1 tbspn

13. Oil of Sauteing

14. Milk 1 tbspn

16. Yoghurt 2 tbspn



1. Soak spinach and mustard greens in water for 10 mins so that all the dirt comes out.

2. Finely chop onions and tomatoes

3. Heat 1 tbspn oil in a pan and once the once the oil is hot onion and salt. After 5 minutes once the onion turns transparent add 2 green chillies and tomatoes. Saute till the tomatoes turn mushy. add turmeric powder

saag aloo steps

4. Drain water from spinach and coarsely cut it. Add spinach to the tomato onion masala and saute till it wilts

5. Drain water from mustard greens. Coarsely cut it – I retain the stalks too. Add mustard greens to the masala and saute till it wilts.

6. Turn off flame and let the contents cool down to warm. Transfer the masala to a mixer and grind it into a coarse paste. I usually ‘pulse’ for 2 to 4 times

saag aloo steps

7. Now heat oil in the pan. Temper cumin seeds and cinnamon stick

8. Carefully add the coarse saag paste and saute well. Do a taste check for salt. At this point it should be slightly salty as we are yet to add potatoes

9. Add 1 tbspn of milk , 2 tbspn of yoghurt, chilli powder and coriander powder

10. when the mixture comes together, add cooked and chopped potatoes and mix well. Serve this curry with soft chapathis and rice

saag aloo steps


Saag Aloo