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Tag Archives: Main course

Pasta Prima who?

8, no! make it 7, years back after I had started working and driving in this new mad world where I had made my home, I wanted to take K for a nice surprise birthday dinner. Conferred with a friend of mine on the cuisine / place / what to wear and what not. That’s what girl friends are there for, aren’t they? Finally decided on an Italian choice, a safe choice if I think about it now, but sounded absolutely fascinating then, as I thought of pasta as an universal dish (still think) and there is a kind that everyone of us loves. Think of the variety – Spaghetti, Penne, Fusilli, Linguine – the list is almost endless.

As the weather is turning south and the air is getting a little nippy, I turn to my kitchen to remind me of summer. Pasta Primavera is one such dish and the fresher the ingredients are, the more refreshing it ends up being. This is such a colorful dish that can be served as one of the entree in your Italian themed dinner or just had as a simple one-pot meal.

Handful of these veggies, cut into 2″ pieces and boil, so that they are cooked but still retain a crunch:
Asparagus
Beans
Bell Pepper
Carrots

Whisk together the following ingredients to prepare the Vinagrette.
2 Tbsp – EVOO
1 Tbsp – White Wine Vinegar
1 tsp – Crushed Red Pepper
1 tsp – Salt
1 tsp – Black Pepper

Boil water and cook a cup of pasta (Penne, Bowtie or Fusilli works best) al-dente. Strain the pasta and mix in the boiled veggies and vinaigrette and give it a good toss. As simple as that!

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Posted by on September 13, 2010 in Cooking, Italian

 

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Bisi Bele Bath

Now that the first step in making bisi bele bath has been completed successfully, the next step is to prepare the rice. With little preparation ahead of time, making bisi bele bath can really become a breeze. I usually have cooked rice and toor dhal in my fridge, which saves me a lot of time on weekdays, when we constantly are running short of time.

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Posted by on March 16, 2010 in Cooking, Desi, Traditional cooking

 

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Colorful Pasta Salad

When I got married and moved here, I didn’t think too much about having K’s sister and her family live in the same locality as well. Over time, we have grown to cherish each other’s presence in our lives, look up to each other for guidance / advice and forged a lovely relationship. Her husband likes to be called Nalan (of the famous Nala-Damayanthi story who is supposed to be a great cook), atleast in the blogosphere and not without reason. He is an awesome cook; his vegetable biryani is to die for and he makes one of the best (home-made from scratch) pizza, I have ever had.

K and I land up in their house almost every other weekend (if not every) under some pretext or the other; why would we not when we get awesome food every time we go there 🙂 He had made this pasta for a potluck family night dinner and when I tasted it, I knew I had to post this on my blog. It is such an easy, simple and healthy dish that is extremely kid-friendly; my nephew and niece will attest to that.

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Posted by on November 12, 2008 in Cooking, Italian

 

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Mor kootu

I am a big fan of curd (Indian yogurt) – every desi meal is squared off with a liberal dose of curd at the end, be it idli or pongal or roti. If I refuse to eat a dish, add some curd to it, and chances are I will finish it without any complaint. What are the odds that this curd-eater (or over-eater) would find a guy who doesn’t touch curd with a 10 foott pole? Well, that is what happened; I married someone who doesn’t eat curd, smell curd and prefers to not even see curd 🙂 So my favorite dishes like mor kozhambu and avial are rarely made, as I am too lazy to make two dishes for the two of us. When I have people over for lunch or dinner, however, the rules of the game are different. I don’t think too much about making a dish or two that my husband would skip.

Dakshin by Chandra Padmanabhan has some authentic Tam-Bram recipes and when I looked at her Mor kootu, I knew this was something that could not go wrong. All the goodness of kootu with the tangy taste of curd, this is sure to be a hit in any crowd.
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Posted by on August 17, 2008 in Cooking, Desi, Traditional cooking

 

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Bisi Bele Bath inspired by A Thousand Splendid Suns

The second book chosen for both Cook’s book club and Thoughtful Thursdays were coincidentally the same – A Thousand Splendid Suns. After having read and liked The KiteRunner, I was curious to read the second book by Khaled Hosseini. It is one thing to impress with a well-written first book, after all there is no reputation at stake, but quite another to keep that up and come up with a winner the second time over. While I wouldn’t call this a winner, Khaled did not flatter to deceive.

The book, again set in Afghanistan, is the story of two very different women, one old enough to be the mother of the other, and whose life touches and by a twist of fate, merges. The book, written from the perspective of Mariam and Laila alternatively, gives us a sneak-peak into a woman’s life in war-torn Kabul. The two women, married to the same man and forced to live together, slowly accept the presence of each other in their life, bond with each other over tea and end up caring for each other when the husband becomes their common nemesis.

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Posted by on June 19, 2008 in Books, Cooking, Desi, Traditional cooking

 

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Food combinations anyone?

Growing up, I remember my mom always cooked food by combinations – if it was keerai masiyal (mashed spinach), it has to be eaten with vetha kozhambu (Note: Sambar without lentils is usually called kozhambu) . If you had paruppu usili (crumbled cooked lentils), then mor kozhambu is a must. How can you have paruppu thogaiyal without jeera rasam? Another such match made in my mom’s kitchen is pongal with gotsu.

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Posted by on May 3, 2008 in Cooking, Desi, Traditional cooking

 

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Baked Veggie Pasta

Ever since I saw Giada making this on Food network, I have been meaning to try this. This is a dish that can make a super elegant presence on your dinner table when you have guests or for a simple weekday dinner.

Baked pasta

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Posted by on April 24, 2008 in Cooking, Italian

 

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