Tuesday, March 29, 2011
I've tried my hand at making veggie burgers before from various recipes and I've tried making my own, but I've never been completely successful in coming up with one that holds well together AND tastes great. This time I was lucky. I improvised very slightly on a recipe I found here: it sounded terribly healthy with oats and two kinds of beans and carrots, among other goodies, and I had all the ingredients I needed on hand, except the black beans. But I had plenty of other kinds of beans, including red, which I ended up using in combination with the pinto beans.
Saturday, March 26, 2011
Roshani's green thumb is quite an inspiration to a clumsy but eager gardener like me. She grows a variety of vegetables and herbs each year in her postage-stamp backyard and even has a raspberry bush and a fig tree crammed in there. What's more, she's made room for a rain barrel.
Me, my backyard is mostly the domain of my adventure-seeking two, Opie and Lucy. They rampage through it at will, trying to seek and sniff out every little bit of trouble they can get their noses into. The vegetable garden is out of their reach because it's fenced off, although they do spend a lot of time looking at it and then me with soulful eyes, trying no doubt to hatch a plan to get in.
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
I am not a planner. My best ideas usually come to me only after I actually begin a task. That's the way it has always been and it usually works for me, whether I am working, writing a blog post, or ...baking bread.
My sandwich bread recipe, which is part whole-wheat, has been one of my go-to bread recipes for months now. It takes less than 15 minutes to put together the dough and once that's done all I have to do is nurse it through two rises and bake it into two fabulous loaves we can eat all week long.
Monday, March 21, 2011
I first ate this utterly simple but surprisingly flavorful pasta at the home of one of Desi's colleagues who had invited us to dinner. I had never been a huge fan of parsley because, perhaps like every Indian who's migrated to the United States, I bought it the first time in error-- thinking it was coriander, the herb we Indians cannot live without. I went ahead and added it to my curry and imagine my disappointment when instead of the fresh, lemony, spicy bite of cilantro, I tasted the herby but understated parsley.
Friday, March 18, 2011
I was up baking these late last night, which might explain the off-kilter frosting, but they taste so good that I'm sure you'll forgive me. As you might have guessed from the name, the liquid in these cupcakes is Irish Cream. But Irish Cream of course isn't vegan so I made my own by mixing Desi's single-malt Scotch, soy creamer, coffee granules, maple syrup, chocolate and vanilla. It was so mindblowingly delicious that I wanted to drink it all up.
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
A few weeks back I got in the mail a review copy of Sweet Utopia by Sharon Valencik. It immediately grabbed my attention with its cover picture of a scrumptious-looking, three-layer cake with a thick layer of icing on top. Delving in, I fell in love with the fact that the author used almost none of those strange-sounding vegan baking ingredients that throw the non-vegans among us (and some vegans as well) into a confused daze.
Saturday, March 12, 2011
To anyone who has not eaten fennel, this is a flavor to die for. I especially like roasting fennel - both the seeds and the bulbs-- because that's when its deliciously licorice-y flavor mellows into rich sweetness. Heaven for the tastebuds.
Thursday, March 10, 2011
But the resemblance is entirely skin-deep, because they taste outrageously different and weigh far apart on the health scale. While the traditional omelet is packed with cholesterol and reeks with that awful egg smell, the chilla is nuttily fragrant and can be made fat-free if you just spray your skillet with one of those oil sprays instead of using real oil. And because chickpeas are packed with protein, you will definitely not miss out on your protein in this vegan omelet.
Monday, March 07, 2011
Last week we also discovered our lovely calico cat Pubm, who had developed a mysterious limp in the past month that was initially diagnosed as arthritis, is harboring what seems to be a fast-spreading tumor in her hip. The day Freddie passed on, Pubm went through a biopsy. The results are expected next week.
In the past year, three of our five furry babies have been diagnosed with cancer. Each time I visit a vet or speak with a pet parent, I hear more stories about the incredibly high prevalence of cancer in cats and dogs today. Googling up the topic throws up all kinds of theories, with store-bought pet food being the prime suspect.
Friday, March 04, 2011
Tuesday, March 01, 2011
In most Indian kitchens, cooks, in an effort to get their families to eat this vegetable prized for its blood-sugar-fighting, cholesterol-lowering properties, add to it tons of sweeteners like jaggery or stuff it with all kinds of goodies and then deep-fry it. The idea is to mask its magnificent bitterness which some people, and especially kids, abhor. But all that work pretty much ends up working at odds with the natural healthfulness of the karela.