Thursday, April 30, 2015

Mocha Mousse

So guys, I told how much I relished the Nutella mousse I made few days back. This time I took it up a notch by adding coffee flavor to the mousse. Coffee + chocolate really takes the flavor to the whole new level. Coffee is one of those flavors that everybody likes- classic caffeine kick, nothing quite like that!! This yummy treat is not just a crowd-pleaser, it's very easy to make with just 4 or 5 ingredients. This recipe is so versatile guys, just whip the cream and add whatever flavor you would like to and that's it!! Next on my list is salted caramel!! let me know what's your favorite flavor in the comments.. If you're not a coffee person(what a shame), do check out my mango flavored mousse and Nutella mousse..

  1. Heavy cream/whipping cream- 2 cups
  2. Chocolate chips- 1 cup
  3. Sugar- 3 tbsp
  4. Vanilla extract(optional)- 1 tsp
  5. Instant coffee powder- 2 tbsp
  • In a bowl, whip the heavy cream with sugar, coffee powder & vanilla until soft peaks form.
  • Put the chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and heat it till it melts.
  • Let it chill for a bit. Once not so hot, gently mix it with the whipped cream.
  • Chill for atleast 30 mins before you serve..
  • Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Gobi/Cauliflower Masala

Is it not funny that we look for the authentic taste, a sense of nostalgia, a touch of home in restaurant meals but also look for restaurant taste, richness in our home cooked food! How contradictory our thoughts can be!

How many times would we have related restaurant food to our mothers, grandmothers or even great grandmothers?

And how many times, would we have scouted the internet for restaurant style recipes of our favorite food?!?

 Of late, there are so many recipes out there in the internet claiming to be ‘authentic’ or ‘restaurant style’ for each and every dish churned out from the kitchen that I don’t really know how much of it is true. But when I came across this recipe for Cauliflower masala, I knew I had to give it a try. I was literally drooling seeing the pictures. I convinced myself that even if not restaurant style, it got to be yummy for sure but it turned out to be both – delicious and very similar to what we get in a really good restaurant!

So here is my version with very very less changes depending on the ingredients that I had available at that time.


Cauliflower - 1 medium, chopped to medium sized florets.
Tomatoes -  2 medium size
Cashews - Around 10
Onion - 1 medium, finely chopped
Ginger Garlic Paste - 1 tsp
Bay Leaf- 1
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
Red Chilli Powder - 1/2 tsp
Garam Masala- 1/2 tsp
Coriander Powder- 1/2 tsp
Fennel Seeds - 1/2 tsp
Kasuri methi/Dry Fenugreek seeds - 1/2 tsp
Thick Yoghurt - 1 tbs


1. Boil 3 cups of water. When it starts boiling, turn off the stove and add the chopped cauliflower florets to the hot water. Keep it covered for 20 minutes.

2. Grind tomatoes and cashews to a smooth paste.

3. Drain the cauliflowers and wipe them dry.

4. Heat a teaspoon of oil in a pan and add the cauliflower florets. Saute on medium flame for about 8 to 10 minutes until the cauliflower gets some brown spots. Keep the cauliflowers aside.


1. Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in the same pan.
2. Add bay leaf and fennel seeds and fry for few seconds.
3. Add chopped onions and fry until golden brown.
4. Add ginger garlic paste and fry until the raw smell goes away.
5. Add the ground tomato cashew paste and give a good mix.
6. Add the other spices - turmeric powder, coriander powder, garam masala and red chilli powder.
7. Saute and stir for about 15 minutes. You should see the oil leaving the sides of masala.
8. Add 1.5 cups of water and give it a stir.
9. Add the cauliflower florets along with required salt.
10. Stir and cover cooked for about 15 minutes or until the florets are completely cooked. Make sure to stir at regular intervals.
11. Add crushed kasuri methi and yoghurt. Give it one good stir.

Your Cauliflower masala is ready. Trust me, it is the amazing cauliflower dish I have ever had. Serve it hot with rotis

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Beetroot Hummus

I'm a foodie and I'm proud of it! For me,every meal should be treat to my eyes and a party in my mouth. I watch a lot of food/cooking related TV shows and nod and sometimes even talk back to the TV.. I tend to have a great relationship with food.When I say food, it's only the food that I like.So the deal-breaker is mostly the veggies; egg plant, beets, bitter-gourd, Cabbage, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower are good examples. 
I shriek at my hubby whenever he picks these veggies at grocery store.It brings me such horrible memories of my parents torturing me to eat them. I'm in my late 20's now guys, it's time I start including them in my diet. Let's do it, one veggie at a time!

I came across a beet dip recipe in Pinterest, I wasn't sure if I would like the dip since it's made of ONLY beets. So I thought I'll roast them up and make hummus out of it. It was indeed treat to my eyes and party in mouth you guys! I just couldn't taste the beet at all!! It's just like the classic hummus, only prettier!Perfect with pita chips, it's sure to please your guests. The recipe is definitely a keeper. Lets get to the recipe already!!

For roasting beets
  1. Beetroot- one small(peeled & roughly chopped)
  2. Oil- 1 tsp
  3. salt & red chili powder or pepper- to taste
For dip
  1. chickpeas- 1 can(skin removed)
  2. garlic cloves-2
  3. yogurt- 2 tbsp
  4. oil- 2 tbsp
  5. salt & red chili powder- to taste
  6. lemon juice-1 tsp
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350deg F .
  2. Coat the beets with oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper/red chili powder.
  3. Place them on a baking sheet and bake for 20-30 mins.
  4. Once done, add this along with other ingredients under 'for the dip' in a blender.
  5. Puree it until you get a smooth, creamy paste. Do a taste-test and add more salt/red chili powder if required.
  6. Store it in the fridge until you serve it. Enjoy!
  • You can serve it cold with pita chips, raw veggies, roasted veggies or can be used as spread or dressing.
  • If you  are finding it tough to puree it into a smooth paste. add a little water.
  • You can also add tahini sauce or some sesame seeds while blending.

What's your take on these veggies? Are you a hater or lover? I think it’s all about cooking them right! Let me know!
A beet lover and converter.

Check out our other easy finger food recipes  roasted red pepper hummusbaked pita chips, cucumber tzatziki bites, bread potato rolls

Hearth n Soul Bloghop

Monday, April 27, 2015

Red Chutney

You know how one big happy family works, right? Especially in most Indian families, or atleast mine, it is just not the immediate ones but includes the whole extended family of aunts, uncles, cousins and at times it might go to the extent of parents’ cousin’s mother-in-law’s sister!!!  You get the picture? 

Of course, each one of us may have differing opinions and we may agree to disagree, but we have always had the best times when we all get together and enjoy the cheerful chitter- chatter.

And now, do not be surprised that I am going to relate the same with, wait for it – CHUTNEY!

Chutney by itself is one happy Indian family.It has relatives across the subcontinent with nicknames galore! Each chutney may have different name, different preparation methods, and different taste but in the end of the day, it never fails to disappoint the takers. It has something to give for every palate and always live in harmony with all its other relatives in the country.

This red chutney is kind of staple at home for idli/dosa! Idli/dosa with chutney is larger than life to us. It is a very quick and simple recipe that can be prepared in a jiffy. As I already mentioned, there are gazillion versions of them and this is mine! Hope you like it as much as I do.

Friday, April 24, 2015


I often have those days when I want to make a dessert, but don't want to take hours together for creating a grand masterpiece of deliciousness. Especially when I am having guests over, I would like to rely on recipe that are ‘mess free’, quick and preferably the ones that can be prepared in advance without having my guests to see the crime scene that my kitchen would turn out to be while I am cooking.

So either you are having those ‘need a dessert in a hurry’ cravings or having your friends over whom you want to really please – this is the recipe for you!

I cannot assure you that this can be made in a blink of an eye. But I can definitely assure you that it is insanely simple with no complex procedure yet tastes absolutely brilliant – like you put more efforts than you actually did!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

French Toast

My idea of perfect weekend is to hang out with friends starting Friday night which goes on till Saturday night, wake up on a Sunday morning (5 mins before 12 PM is still Morning right? ) and have a tummy-full of breakfast or brunch.. Mostly I'll be making sandwiches, scrambled eggs, waffles, you know the ones which can be made in a jiffy with minimal ingredients and preparation.. 
Recently I made French toast and we love it because it's easier to make than I thought and it's the best way to use up the bread which is gonna go stale in couple of days..
This recipe is from the back of my vanilla extract bottle and it's definitely a keeper! I love them with a generous drizzle of maple syrup but if you have some time and patience, top them with fresh sliced fruits or some Nutella, custard or whipped cream..

  1. Egg- 1
  2. Milk- 1/4 cup
  3. Bread Slices- 3
  4. Sugar- 2 tsp
  5. Vanilla extract- 1 tsp
  1. Beat egg, sugar and vanilla extract in a bowl.Stir in milk.
  2. Cut the bread diagonally into 2 halves.
  3. Dip them in the egg mixture and make sure both the sides are coated evenly.
  4. Cook them on a greased non-stick pan/skillet until both sides are browned.
  5. Serve with maple syrup.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Badam Kheer

Badam kheer is a very popular recipe. It has a creamy flavor of almond, color of saffron and aromatic smell of cardamom. Iam a die hard fan for any cold beverage combined with milk :). I was craving to have this kheer for a long time and I think that only pushed me to make this wonderful dessert. I like my kheer to be prepared one day before and served the next day, it gives an awesome taste. Here you go with the recipe.



  • Almonds - 1 cup
  • Milk - 5 cups 
  • Sugar - 1 cup
  • Saffron - few 
  • Pistachio (chopped)(optional) - 2tbsp 
  • Cardamom - 1
  • Ghee - 2tsp 


  • Take 3-4 tsp of milk and warm it in microwave for about 30 seconds, to that add saffron and leave it for few minutes.
  • Boil water and then add almonds to it. Soak it for half an hour, then peel off the skin from all the almonds. Reserve 6-7 almonds and cut them into thin strips for later use.
  • Grind rest of the almonds with little milk to a smooth paste. Keep aside.


  • Boil the remaining milk in a pan on low flame.
  • When milk starts to boil add the almond paste, soaked saffron and sugar. Mix well. 

  • Keep stirring now and then to avoid burning. Boil the milk until desired consistency. It takes about 10 minutes on medium flame. 
  • Fry the sliced almonds in ghee for few minutes on medium flame, without getting burnt. 
  • Now add cardamom, fried almond to the kheer. 
  • Allow the kheer to boil for few minutes. Switch off the flame. 
  • Leave the kheer to cool down. Then refrigerate for 10 hours for best result.
  • Garnish the kheer with thinly sliced almonds and saffron. It will be great in taste. 


  • Adding pistachio is optional.
  • Serve the next day preferably. 
  • Adjust sugar and add as per your taste. 

Monday, April 13, 2015

Cream Of Broccoli

There are so many people we meet in our lives. People! People of different kind! Some people come into our lives and so effortlessly yet beautifully leave foot prints and a lasting impression on our hearts. While there are also those who tag along and put so much efforts and make us want to leave our footprints and a lasting impression on their face! (This leaves me curious to know what category I might fit into for others.) And when it comes to workplace, I am sure we are bound to meet the latter more often than the former. But I have been fortunate enough to meet some really nice people even at work place. One such person is Mr. M.

He is a wonderful human and that would sum it all. We had our own differences- national origin, religious beliefs, culture, gender and above all, age – he will easily be at least 20 to 25 years older than me! But all this never came in the way of our endless conversations…endless conversations over a bowl of soup, not any other soup but, ‘Cream of Broccoli’ which was served in the cafeteria once a week. Both of us would be ecstatic when this soup was on the menu for the day and would even ditch our home packed lunch for it.

I am a person who strongly believes that we do not meet people by accident. They are meant to cross our path for a reason (husband calls me crazy for that!). This Mr. M is such a ‘teacher/father figure’ to me if that even makes sense. And I am so glad I was able to get to know such a person in my life whose principles and thoughts leave you with utmost respect for the person.

We no longer work together but every time I have a bowl of this soup, you now know whom I will be reminded of! 

I don’t know why, but rainy days make me get lost in some random thoughts of life. And it is no wonder that as I write this, it is a cold rainy evening in Chicago and umm... how I wish I can slurp on this hot creamy soup now and continue to get lost in my own world!

If only I had some broccolis left, sigh!!

Oh. Wait! Let me quickly give you the recipe, before I even forget the intent of this post!  

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Green Beans Parupusili

Growing up, I was not a very cooperative kid when it comes to food. I very much regret now for having wasted almost a quarter of my life (I like to believe that I will live up to 100). I used to detest almost everything without even giving it a try and for no reason at all. All I can say is, my eating habit has been downright shameful. All my mother’s efforts to make me eat better went in vain. How I pity her now. There were very few things I used to like and so without a doubt, those few dishes definitely made its appearance on the dinner table more often.

This dish that I am now talking about – Beans Parupusili is one such favorite of mine. It was one of the very few vegetables I used to eat… well to be more honest, apart from this dish, I don’t remember on top of my head eating any other vegetable other than potatoes and ladies finger. Please do not judge! I warned you already it was shameful. And hey, I am far better now (I am now so so so proud of myself that broccoli is my new favorite that I keep telling about it whenever/wherever I can, great change, right?)

So, how can I not have the recipe of my favorite dish on blog? Would that not be shameful now? So here it is ! Beans Parupusili is a classic south indian dish and if I am right, makes it appearance mostly in the kitchens of Tamilians. Please let me know in the comments below if you have similar dish with different name in your regional cuisine.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Recipe For Tzatziki Sauce & Cucumber Bites

How fancy are these cucumber bites? Top the bite-size cucumber slices with a dollop of creamy tzatziki sauce and bits of red pepper, and get ready to impress your guests.. Bite-size appetizers are very crowd-pleasing and always a hit. These make-ahead appetizers are perfect for BBQ party, baby shower,Thanksgiving, brunch or any occasion.
You can sub tzatziki sauce with herbed cheese or creamcheese and red pepper with cherry tomatoes or smoked salmon. You can play around with it!!Also, it was one among the other appetizers I served for the party; it is too light to be served as a main appetizer :)

Now, what on Earth is Tzatziki you ask?
It's a traditional Greek sauce which is made out of Greek yogurt,grated cucumber, garlic and some lemon juice.. It can be served as a dip or as a spread on sandwich/burgers.It's always served cold..

Recipe for Tzatziki Sauce
  • Greek yogurt-1 cup(no Greek yogurt? Check note)
  • Cucumber(peeled & grated) -1/2 cup
  • Garlic(finely chopped)- 1/2 tsp
  • Lemon juice- 1 tsp
  • Fresh dill/mint(finely chopped)- 1 tsp
  • Salt- 1/2 tsp(for draining the water from cucumber)
  • Salt & pepper- to taste
Note- If using regular yogurt, just suspend the yogurt in a muslin cloth/paper towel for an hour to drain away the water.
  • Add salt to the grated cucumber which draws out the water.Squeeze the water out of cucumber.
  • Now mix all the ingredients together until well-combined.
  • Do a taste test and add more salt or pepper.
  • Refrigerate it.
    Recipe for Cucumber bites
  • Cucumber(peeled and sliced into 3/4 inch- 1 inch discs)- 1 large
  • Red pepper- for garnishing (cut into bits)
  • Additional salt & pepper(if needed)
Add a dollop of cold tzatziki sauce on top of all the cucumber discs.Top it with red pepper bits. Sprinkle some salt n pepper if needed.Serve chilled and enjoy!

Privacy Policy