First hand on red meat expt : Kheema vada/Minced meat patties

Paranoid, is the next word I would link when I think of cooking red meat. I love mutton briyani and kheema vada only when my mum cooks  with 'special' ? meat my dad buys. Oh yes am too picky when it comes to lamb. Reason is, meat what we we normally get is from sheep but the one my dad hunts and gets for us is tender goat. Am pretty sure your preference would change once you have tasted the tender goat meat. Being a food blogger I wanted to show am brave enough to give it a try and handle the strong flavor (according to me) and a small inspiration did the magic!

I invited Finnish family friends for an Indian lunch, kheema vada, chicken dum briyani, chicken gravy, potato bean fry, raita and suji (semolina) halwa was the menu. Was excited to cook as I was cooking even dum briyani was  for the first time. Spice level for the entire food was moderate, since invites were elders, perfect for them to relish. Here goes the recipe. Was I satisfied? partially yes but still what mum makes is the best :D From today I have increased the size of the picture, haven't yet changed my previous post pictures, will do it slowly, kindly ignore the strange size difference on the page!


Laid back evenings - Orange cake

Laid back? not that I come home shrugging and crash on the couch and later do nothing but... This whole week am staying with Somjai, 8 months going to be mama, as her her husband is off for a conference. Having great time with her, I start from office "early" thinking that someone is waiting for me and we have plans to cook together and have dinner, loving it. Then we start to talk, which we did while working together, about work, colleagues in and around department, lots to update....you know :p Giggle, laugh and best is am completely away from laptop and internet, so my dear blog mates, shall get back to all your blog post this weekend :)

Funny thing to be with pregnant ladies is they have increased body temperature and it's around 10 degrees in Finland or even less in the evening but Somjai switches on the fan , ahem ahem. I'm like shivering and dancing sitting inside a cold closet, with sweater and socks on :D we laugh about it. I keep asking baby to kick mama more so I get a chance to sense, but mama bear gets super annoyed :) Sometime baby listens to Aunt Ananda :D

Back to cake, if you are having a less time to make cake or to do during working days this is the cake. Merie's parents visited Finland, myself and Vinoo were invited for home made kerala food. Aunty made Aviyal, chicken kurma, rice, papad, ethnic kerala powder to mix with rice, pickle, now my mouth is watering thinking all those delicious food. It was feast for we hungry beast :)

Best part about this cake is, it can be made previous night and let it cool down the whole night, next day top it up with fresh cream with orange zest, they bring ultimate freshness, flavor, super soft and creamy :) 


An email some motivation and tears of joy - Almond cake

It may sound familiar if I say "there are many  individual from childhood days I have lost contact ". Let me give you a short glimpse of my yesteryear's. Say 10 to 15 yrs back during my school days. I was an introvert who had countable number of friends. I was overshadowed by not being a bright student of the class, don't be surprised if I say, I was never good with my studies, since I hated competition (still do) and intelligence being constantly compared to marks got in exams. According to me intelligence is something a person achieves in any of his/her field of interest which finally gets noticed by people but never compared as each individual has their own originality.

From countable number of friends, one girl Bexci Christy who wore only white and black dress, as that was her fav, that too exactly similar pattern whenever we had a chance to wear color dress in school, was first to cross my mind when I thought of her. We studies together, she is taller than me so we didn't share same bench nor we giggled during class hours but ....i don't remember anymore it's 1 AM now my brain is hibernating. Slowly as we moved to higher grades we got dispersed to follow the blueprint with an urge to achieve what we intended in order to survive in the competitive world and to make our parents feel proud one day!

Years rolled, out of sheer hate, trust me it's "the" honest truth, I took physics, since I couldn't get thro' medical. Thank God for that, I have my own way now. Slowly I fell in love with physics, got to know about research and then a way to attain Dr. before my name. That is the 'only' goal in life. I forgot the world when I moved to Finland, since I was seeing the future I dreamt off. Didn't expect it to be a cake walk but neither did I envisaged it to be hard like diamond, huge like mountain, scary as snake, deep as well, unreachable like ocean and lonely like forest. Getting lost period started, thanks to social-networks. That's when I started to get back in contact with my old friends, we had endless thing to share, talk and  above all  it made me feel like I gained human-connection, without which am a dead girl.

Slowly my blog baby shaped, not even in my wild dreams I thought it would reach this level, thanks to all who gave/giving me a push to do it and believed I could make it. Last week I received a friends request from Bexci and with small message asking for my email id. It was joyful start for the day, it took me back to those innocent days, loved it. She sent me a mail, which brought "tears of joy" in my eyes. It was filled with encouraging, appreciating and motivating words. I was on cloud9 and indeed had goose bumps. We are sharing long replies, about what's going on in each other lives and what are we up to. She is a prof. at a college teaching Visual Communication in India stepping in to area of research, I was super impressed. Getting a designation Prof before ur name isn't easy. It's a pile of hard work ,dedication and intelligence. That exactly proves marks doesn't matter!Kudos Lady!

She did create an impact in me for past few days, since I was again at my lower minima going through tough time with PhD. Like they say how small things makes large difference, it actually worked for me. So thank you Bexci and this is a special cake for you darling for making me realize "though I loose one little thing  I gain something precious!" 

This is an ultra simple cake, if you are by any chance in nutty mood then this is the cake. Original recipe is from David Lebovitz made few changes, reduced the amount of butter and quantity of eggs. Indeed shared with Vinoo, we loved the cake, as it was subtle chewy of course bit heavy as it contains only nuts but great with tea or for breakfast!


Pearly Delight - Coconut Ladoo

Asima Bengali beauty is well know for the simple and delicious coconut ladoo. Whenever she made  those ladoo's either for Indian get together or for some pooja, all of us used to binge on it immediately. As it was moist, light, fresh and indeed delicious. Best thing is, it is cream and milk free. Basically low fat and juicy inside.
I come from coconut background, back in India my home is surrounded by mango, 5 coconut, guava, pomegranate and custard apple trees. Most likely we have some fruits or the other throughout the year. Every 2-3 months either of the coconut trees were harvested. My dad always made sure some fresh tender coconuts were served for the day, oh missing it. When I buy some kind of coconut from normal markets in Finland, I shed blood tears.
So, learning something from coconut was on the priority list, by which I could surprise mom when I go back to India. Asima was very happy to teach me, Shanthi too joined us, so obviously we have short girls evening, with good food and lots of ladoo. Thanks to PhD I have enormous patience, spent two hours to skin off the brown layer underneath the white part, wanted ladoo's to resemble pearl.


Vegetable Threat - Radish Sabzi/Recipe?

You got it right, am being haunted by myself and friends for posting too many desserts and chicken recipes. This being the best season of the year in Finland where I get fresh veggies had no option left but to make use of rare items. I find it difficult to cook veggies because they are delicate. My dad always used to be very specific not to over do them, according to him every vegetable has it's own natural sweetness and it gets lost if it is over cooked. My preference is slow cooking, since I don't like to be in kitchen and keep an eye on the procedures, after coming back home late in the evening specially when I have separation anxiety with laptop, facebook and food blogs :) Finally broke the rules, am trying few veg recipes lately. I got a threat message form Sriram saying he will not visit my blog until unless there is a veg recipe over here....so here it is Sriram :)

Years ago I checked cooking videos on rediff and a lady (sorry forgot her name) made this recipe, I vaguely remembered the ingrediants. Tired it out with my own taste, to be very honest, didn't know how to name it...feel free to name as you like :D

Below pic is inspired form  Nisha's beetroot photo, it was stuck my brain for long time. I went around looking for eye catching basket, arrghh, as always didn't get what I want, but brought the bowl which I used for this recipe, so ended up using my fruit basket for photo-shoot :p.

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