Indian Masala Buns

Truth be told I had never tasted Indian masala buns until one of my dear friends made them one time when I had gone over for tea, I’m talking over a decade ago! She fondly reminisced of her Dad making them for her and her brother when she was growing up and served them nostiligically for us to have with a little butter. I can honestly say I haven’t had these buns since then. That was the first and last time I had masala buns – it’s been a long time! I don’t know why then, recently I have been craving home made bread but not just any bread –  savory Indian masala buns jazzed up with onions, green chilis and spices.  Continue reading Indian Masala Buns

February in the Garden, 2019

February has had crazy wild weather here in the Bay Area.  Cold, rain, and even snow blanketed our hills and mountains this February.  We haven’t had snow in our lower elevations in over 9 years! We went from cold temperatures in the 30s to warmer temperatures in the 60s all in just a few weeks.  Despite the ups and down in temperature the garden did really well. Lots and lots of rainy and stormy days in February made for our gardens not complaining one bit. Here is a look at how the garden faired in February. Continue reading February in the Garden, 2019

Twins Celebrating 17 Birthday Menu

Anyone who tells you how fun it is to have twins, let me tell you speaking from one who has twins, it’s not as fun as it seems. And I should know, I have twins and an older child, and now that my older one is and adult and the twins are teens, I can honestly say that it was easier to deal with a single child than with twin teens.  They can’t agree on anything – and I mean anything! They bicker non-stop. They have their own set of friends with no overlap whatsoever. They have two unique interests and hobbies. They hate that they share a birthday – I mean seriously? I tell them “You are twins! Hello! That’s what twins means, you share a birthday?” Continue reading Twins Celebrating 17 Birthday Menu

Spicy Ginger Hermit Bars

Chunky, moist, sweet and spicy, these ginger bars are awesome accompanied with a warm cup of tea for a winner of a cozy combination ☕️ 🍪. These delicious spicy ginger bars have golden raisins, candied ginger, molasses, warming spices, and dark rum – doesn’t all this make your mouth water 😋?   Spicy Ginger Bars from my favorite celebrity chef Ina Garten came to mind this week as its been cold and rainy and there is something about cold wintery days that makes me crave warming spices like nutmeg, ginger and cinnamon. This is an awesome sweet treat to make when the weather gets cold and all you want is something sweet with a warm cup of tea. The best part is these bars are easy to make and taste great! Continue reading Spicy Ginger Hermit Bars

Coconut Rice

This classic South Indian rice made with fresh coconut, curry leaves and spices is a favored rice among many families. Coconut rice is so easy to make that it is one of those go-to rice dishes to whip up in just minutes. Very often coconut rice is a common picnic item as it holds up well and tastes great at room temperature. Usually served with some crunchy potato chips coconut rice makes a great rice dish to have for lunch or dinner with a side of any vegetable dish. Continue reading Coconut Rice

Fall and Winter Inspired Vegetable Barley Soup

Though its winter around here fall-inspired butternut squash can still be found at the grocery stores giving this hearty barley soup that nutty sweetness. Add in a variety of colorful veggies such as carrots, fennel, leeks and potatoes, and a generous sprinkling of herbs and you get a delicious soup perfect for a Sunday soup day. Packed with good for you veggies and barley, this soup is filling as it is beautiful and delicious.  Continue reading Fall and Winter Inspired Vegetable Barley Soup

Spanish Almond Orange Cake

Almond orange cake. Need I say more? For someone like me who loves almonds and loves oranges, this cake is a marriage made in heaven 🍊🍰! I absolutely love almonds, I eat them everyday and I like them so much I have to control how many almonds I have. Anything with almonds is always a hit with me. I love oranges too, especially now in our Bay Area winter when oranges are as juicy and delicious as can be. So as you can see combining two of my favorite foods in a cake is just a winner of recipe for me. Continue reading Spanish Almond Orange Cake

Sierra Azul Hiking Trail. Mount Umunhum Area. Santa Cruz Mountains, California

Happy Friday everyone! I hope you are ready for a great weekend!  After days and days of stormy, rainy, cold weather here in the Bay Area the skies cleared out the last couple of days and we had glorious sunshine 🌞.  Sunny skies were beckoning me to get outside and do something nature oriented – that’s why when my friend Padmini asked if I wanted to join her on a hike on the Sierra Azul trail off Hicks Road in the Santa Cruz Mountains I didn’t think twice – I just said YES! Continue reading Sierra Azul Hiking Trail. Mount Umunhum Area. Santa Cruz Mountains, California

A Little About Fennel

Fennel is an interesting vegetable and a fairly new discovery of mine. For a long time I assumed that fennel was from the plant that produces fennel seeds.  Not until fennel started showing up as a vegetable in cooking magazines did I get curious to do some research on fennel.  This is what I found out. Fennel is a flowering plant closely related to parsley, carrots, dill and coriander. There are two types of fennel. One is treated as a spice (Foeniculum vulgare) and the other one (Florence fennel or Finocchio) is treated like a bulb – this is what’s used as a vegetable. Foeniculum vulgare fennel grows 3-5 feet tall with fine textured foliage resembling dill with flat topped clusters of yellow flowers. The stems, leaves and seeds of this type of fennel are harvested and used as a spice. On the other hand, Florence fennel is the more popular type of fennel and is grown for use as a vegetable. This is the fennel bulb that is widely available nowadays at the grocery stores and is sometimes called fresh anise. Continue reading A Little About Fennel

Stuffed Eggplant with Spicy Almond Meal

Stuffed eggplant is a popular Indian curry with many variations. I am mostly familiar with two versions of stuffed eggplants – one is my Mom-in-law’s recipe which involves stuffing eggplants with chickpea flour and spices, the other is a South Indian Tamil version in which eggplants are stuffed with lentils, shredded coconut and spices. In this new recipe however I thought I would stuff the eggplants with a spicy almond meal and I tell you folks, this has to be the easiest and my new favorite stuffed eggplant curry! Continue reading Stuffed Eggplant with Spicy Almond Meal

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