Oh my Goodness – Rasam! It is comfort food to the Nth degree. Think chicken soup but for vegetarians. Just as chicken soup makes one feel good when they have a cold or flu so does rasam for us vegetarians. In fact in our home or for that matter in most South Indian homes, when one is under the weather the first question they get asked is “Shall I make rasam for you?” Rasam is a ubiquitous feel good soup and is such an integral part of a traditional South Indian meal that every meal will usually include rasam on the menu.
Caramelized onions, cheese, and pasta? What’s not to like with this combination of flavors? Caramelized onions and gooey cheese are awesome together any way you look at it, and when stuffed inside pasta shells? They taste positively outstanding 😋👌! I’ve made stuffed pasta shells before with spinach and onions, but this time I caramelized the onions with a little garlic giving the dish a lovely sweet oniony flavor that tastes wonderful with spinach and ricotta cheese. Continue reading Caramelized Onion and Baby Spinach Stuffed Pasta Shells
Tangy and delicious, thick and creamy, quick and easy, this tomato soup takes just minutes to cook. I made this tomato bisque for a lunch with two of my dear friends last week and since we were getting together for a little Valentine’s Day celebration I wanted to make a soup that was red in color and tomato soup is what we all think of for a red soup. But I was in a time crunch that morning and it’s winter and fresh tomatoes are just not that flavorful in the winter, so I took a chance and made tomato soup with two jars of oven baked tomatoes. Folks, this had to be the quickest tomato soup I have ever made! It was ready in just 15 minutes! Because it is thicker than the usual tomato soup I’m calling it tomato bisque. Continue reading Oven Baked Tomato Bisque
Gotsu is saucy gravy made in South Indian Tamil homes to accompany rice dishes and steamed rice dumplings called idlis. Gotsu is usually made as a quick salsa like sauce to go with any dish on the menu. This tomato onion gotsu is one that my Mom used to make to accompany a lentil and rice dish called pongal. Mom’s simple rice pongal along with her tomato gotsu were always a hit in our home and was truly comfort food. One can serve gotsu warm or at room temperature over your favorite rice dish, or even over chicken or fish. Here is the recipe for Mom’s pongal recipe. For a simple and quick tomato and onion gotsu the recipe is below. Continue reading Tomato Onion Gotsu. South Indian Tamil Tomato Sauce
It was a beautiful summer day, very pleasant in our Bay Area microclimate, and I had just received a huge basket of garden fresh tomatoes from my neighbor Jim, and here I was watching an episode of Barefoot Contessa on TV with a recipe for fresh tomato soup, I couldn’t believe it! The timing couldn’t have been more appropriate, it was the perfect time to make tomato soup with my newly delivered stash of garden tomatoes.
Continue reading Fresh Tomato Carrot Soup
Eggplant Parmesan is such an indulgent Italian dish that I always order it at restaurants. Deep fried breaded eggplant patties baked with gooey cheese and marinara sauce, what’s not to like with this combination? It hits the fried food craving, cheese craving, and Italian food craving, all in one dish. Continue reading Eggplant Parmesan & the Dinner Request That Nudged Me to Make It
Every August and September we are swimming in garden fresh tomatoes from the garden, from multiple tomato deliveries from my neighbor, and abundance of tomatoes at the Farmer’s Markets. All this tomato bounty really forces me to get creative with tomato recipes especially ones that use fresh off the vine garden tomatoes. This Italian salad called panzanella is one of those recipes that is made with lots of fresh tomatoes and crusty bread. Add a bit of garlic, some onions, olive oil and balsamic vinegar and toss in some good sourdough bread and you have a delicious tomato salad with the added feel goodness of bread. The bread soaks up all the juices from the tomatoes and flavors the bread so beautifully that one can eat multiple bowls of this delicious salad. Continue reading Panzanella. Fresh Tomato and Bread Salad
Every summer we get tons and tons of tomatoes and vegetabales from our neighbor, so many vegetables in fact that we can’t eat them fast enough. I’m talking hundreds and hundreds of tomatoes, eggplant, zucchinis, peppers, cucumbers, and chilies. I froze a bunch to use throughout the year but my freezer was getting pretty full. I gave a bunch of veggies to friends too but I still had loads of vegetables waiting to be used. Finally with the remainder of the hundreds of tomatoes, squashes, and eggplants I decided a couple of years ago to make giant pots of marinara sauce, and for the first time in my life I learnt how to can and jar my tomatoes. Continue reading Canning Tomatoes. A Novice’s Journey
During our recent visit to Paris this summer, my daughter Sri and I had lunch and dinner at many of the cafes and restaurants we stumbled upon as we explored the city. One of the restaurants was Angelina on Rue de Rivoli. We liked Angelina so much that we stopped by more than once to try not just their desserts but their lunch as well. Angelina is a local favorite and has been in business since 1903. They are famous for their pastries, tea, and lunch service. At Angelina’s is where we tried their vegetarian club sandwich and absolutely loved it. Continue reading Parisian Inspired Vegetarian Club Sandwich
Pachdi is a South Indian Tamil salad in which raw vegetables such as tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and carrots are seasoned with mustard seeds, asafetida, and curry leaves that are toasted in oil. Pachdi is typically served as a side dish along with the main meal. Here is a recipe for a very simple tomato kosumalli. Continue reading Tomato Pachdi. Tomato Salad with Toasted Mustard Seeds