Recipe: Cinnamon Honey Whiskey Sour

From the many things that bother me, migraines are somewhere on top of the list. This, much to my dismay, has resulted in several lifestyle choices. I cannot eat Chinese food with MSG, cannot drink alcohol as much as I want, cannot have too much chocolate, cannot deviate from a strict schedule etc.

recipe whiskey cocktail drinks

Why am I telling you this? Because lately I’ve realised that the only alcoholic drink that doesn’t give me a headache is the good ol’ Whiskey Sour. Maybe it’s in my head (pun intended), but I’m going to stick to my chubby glass of Whiskey Sour for a while with lime and not orange. Orange is next level yucky.

So I figured I should learn to make this at home for emergencies like… Mondays or Wednesdays or afternoons. Most recipes online involved a sour mix which I don’t know where to find in Mumbai, mainly because I haven’t tried looking for it #LazyGoose. But this recipe is different. Not only does it not need a sour mix, it also combines utilises one of my favourite spices – Cinnamon.

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Recipe: No Churn 3 Ingredient Cookies & Cream Ice Cream

I remember when I was about seven or eight years old, my ever experimental mom bought an ice cream maker from one of those teleshopping networks. I was forbidden to enter the dining room where she was attempting to make her first batch of homemade ice cream. Mom used to do all sorts of mad things back then. Despite having been given strict instructions to stay out of her way, I slowly crept up the long corridor in our old house and pushed aside the stiff door curtain to the dining room.

recipe easy ice cream homemade

I couldn’t believe my eyes. Maybe it was because I was so little, but to me it looked like there had been an explosion. White powder, water and ice were all over the place… on the floor, the table and on mumma. She chased me out before I could enter. If my memory serves me right, that was the last time we used that wretched ice cream maker. We still have it though, tucked away on a higher shelf in the kitchen where no one can (and should) reach. I don’t really remember the taste of the ice cream but I’ll never forget that scene. We still laugh about it.
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Recipe: Super Easy 3 Ingredient No Bake Oreo Truffles

Ah, kitchen… we meet again. As much as I love eating, reading recipe books and watching MasterChef, the patience one needs to cook evades me. Up until now. I’d like to think I’m getting better. Maybe it’s age, maybe it was a just a slow Saturday. We’d never know.

This isn’t so much of a cooking recipe but more of an assembling one. If I can put this together, happily ace it and watch my biggest critic (See: D.R.R. TrollKill) pass out momentarily with glee…anyone can do it. And I mean ANYONE.

What I love about this brilliant recipe is how insanely easy it really is. It’s simple enough for kids to make too. Since it requires bare essentials when it comes to utensils or appliances, even young adults and college kids staying by themselves can give it a shot.
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Recipe: Garlicky Yogurt Dip

When Tupperware sent me their Speedy Chef, I remember thinking to myself, “Oh my gondola, I need make THE yogurt dip.” So, D.R.R.TrollKill‘s mom makes an addictive garlicky yogurt dip that I can eat by the bucket.

This supremely easy dip is so creamy and yummy, you’ll find yourself piling it on your chips, crackers or veggie sticks. Best part is there isn’t a microwave, oven or stove involved… just a cool mechanical kitchen appliance that will blend the ingredients effortlessly. Once you’ve aced the dip, give this super simple no churn ice cream a go.
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Review: CupCake Factory, Bandra

We hit up the newest dessert parlour in Bandra on opening weekend last Sunday. Remember CupCake Factory from McCraig? The mother-son run brand now has their own standalone store near Mehboob Studios, Bandra. I was unwell that day so #theboy was the official taster for this review. Here’s what he has to say about about CupCake Factory…

The decor is pretty cool – whisks, ladles etc hanging from the entrance ceiling. There’s a stove that’s been turn into a light fixture. There’s a oven that keeps constantly one and also works like a fun light. The murals are super. The mural is hand painted to look like well…a cupcake factory! It’s fun and sweet. To think this little place was created by the owner Aditya and his friends and an posh interior designer…
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Review: Mojo Bar

Energy bars are the bomb. It’s a complete energising meal that you can eat in 10 minutes without getting your hands messy. I repeat, energy bars are the bomb. As a writer, the days I’m on the field travelling the lenght of the city for an interview, energy bars and coffee are the only things that keep me from getting “hangry”.
So when the folks at MojoBar got in touch with us to try out their brand new energy bar, I couldn’t wait. Turns out they have 3 flavours – Choco Almond, Yogurt Berry and Nutty Apricot. The yellow packaged Nutty Apricot bar, like all the rest, is free of preservatives and gluten. The pack says that all of them are made with mixed cereal, nuts and fruits which obviously makes them protein and fibre rich.
The yellow Nutty Apricot one, like the name so clearly suggests, has apricots that makes it extra sweet. The red one is Yogurt Berry with white base (yogurt powder) plus sweet and sour cranberries along with mixed cereal makes this a tangy bar on the go. Our most favourite of the three was the Choco Almond. This one has a chunky chocolate base that’s not overtly sweet, which came as a pleasant surprise. The chewy dates add sweetness while the almonds add crunch and the cereal fill you up.
In order of preference, we liked the Choco Almond then Yogurt Berry and finally Nutty Apricot.

You can buy these goodies online at Amazon.in here

Review: 3SqrMeals Food Service

Eating or ordering out always makes me feel guilty. I find myself cringing at the amount of grease or additives added to “outside food”. When 3SqrMeals approached me to review their service, I was struck by the fact that they aim to provide healthy eating options to working folks like me. Since they deliver in my area, I figured it would be nice to know if this new Mumbai based food service hits the spot.

They sent me one of their most popular dishes – the Quinoa Couscous Salad. Priced at Rs 200 for a chicken and Rs 180 for a veg, the salad was tremendous in quantity. I ended up having it for lunch and snack later in the evening. It came with a small box of flavour filled mustard vinaigrette dressing. All the ingredients were ridiculously fresh – the cherry tomatoes, french beans, lettuce and corn. The grilled chicken was well done and moist, in my opinion the hero ingredient of the dish, closely followed by those juicy cherry tomatoes. Overall the salad was mighty filling and refreshing – especially had cold. When I came to the end of the box, I felt rather proud of myself for eating a good high protein meal.

Along with the Quinoa Couscous Salad came half a loaf of brown bread with a spread and a banana. The entire dish comes in a disposable microwave friendly box, which is convenient don’t you think?

About 3SqrMeals: Their mission is unburdening busy professionals from the daily activities of planning and organizing balanced healthy meals. They are on a mission to make healthy eating delicious & effortless. Their menus are available online and can be ordered on a click. They also offer subscriptions that can be customized for a delicious wholesome meal to reach you daily. They currently cover all areas between Worli & BKC for Lunch.
Link: https://3sqrmeals.com/

Review: E.A.S.T at Sahara Star

When I got the opportunity to review this Asian restaurant, I didn’t have high hopes. To be honest, Asian food doesn’t impress me much. The MSG, the Indianization, the excessive condiments….uff big turn off. But felt like giving this one a shot. Here’s all about it…

I went there with a friend and took a seat. Chef Chang, the man in-charge of the kitchen, soon came to tell us about the restaurant’s newest feature – Japanese Teppanyaki and invited us to join him for a leisurely lunch. On a weekend, way past traditional lunch time, the newly launched restaurant was rather empty (3 occupied tables) which meant full attention on us. What I absolutely loved is the central open kitchen. You got to have a lot of guts and faith in yourself to cook live in front of your diners. Apart from the open kitchen, the general decor of the place is sophisticated without being excessively “Asian” (IYKWIM)

Chef Chang, in all his calmness, whipped up a delicious hot and sour chicken soup for us. He made sure all his dishes were medium spiced to cater to both of our taste buds. Now, I’ve had my share of hot and sour soup and I can safely say this is rated no.2. Oh, what’s no 1? Nothing yet, but I assume it will be something from my trip to the land of hot and sour soup (whenever that will be).

Next on the menu was this Tuna Tattaki. Cured, spiced and seared tuna slices set on a bed of cabbage and sprinkled with roasted garlic and spring onion leaves. Seared to such perfection that it almost melted in my mouth. Yes, I am salivating like a St Bernard, simply writing about it…

Then came one of their signature dishes – Mushroom black pepper. They looked stunning and was cooked beautifully. The savory exterior batter was good but the inside mushroom was low on salt, nothing that a little soy can’t fix. 
Once the stove top dishes were out of the way, the big Teppanyaki show was under way. It started with a ceremonial cleaning of the griddle. #NowSinging King of Leon parody – “Yeaah, the stove is on fiiiireee” (Sometimes, I think I’m funny).
Chef Vikas, the resident Teppanyaki expert, steps up to the plate with spatula in hand. His first dish is Tsukune, which essentially is Japanese meatballs made with chicken leg mince, mushrooms, carrots, onion and seasoning, which is first steamed, then skewered and then quickly cooked on the griddle with *fire*.
Just when I thought we were done for the week, he started preparing the main course. Prawn Fried Rice on the griddle with tiny, proportionately cut veggies, soy, pepper, salt, prawns, two eggs and of course *fire*. As I watched him sterilise the eggs and make the fried rice one foot away from me, I couldn’t help but marvel at the simplicity of the ingredients. Behind him, another sous chef made a tangy accompaniment to the rice, Kung Pao Chicken. When served, I couldn’t decide what was tastier, the fried rice or the gravy. And together…*sigh*. Oh and to think all this was made without a pinch of MSG. The restaurant has a strict no MSG policy. 
After all this, the black hole that some call my stomach was ready to call it quits as my fussy taste buds played examiner long enough. I was on my way out when the staff insisted I stay for a dollop of home-made ice-cream. After a thoroughly enjoyable fare, I couldn’t resist tasting, if nothing else, the basil chilli ice cream they offered. What looked like an unassuming scoop of off-white hued ice cream with golden slivers of jack fruit turned out to be a riot of flavours. At the front of the tongue, as soon as you bite into it is an almost savoury but cold basil taste that remains for a few seconds only to be dominated by this unexpected but delightful heat at the back of your throat. And those decorative jackfruit slivers? Well, they add just the best amount of sweetness to the whole dish. 
Now, I couldn’t move. Physically, couldn’t turn/walk/stand. I think my food coma was plainly evident to a highly attentive service that they so kindly got me some green tea to soothe and left me to my thoughts of Asian food and how disillusioned I had been about it before this meal. 

Rating: 4 on 5
E.A.S.T
Address: Ground Floor,
Hotel Sahara Star
Near Domestic Airport
Santacruz (E)
Tel: (022) 39807166

How to Set Up a Picnic for One

She is here and in full swing. Might as well make the best of it, right? Summer with her sunny rays and heat waves is at her tropical best for the next few months. The heat is just incidental when you are comparing it to leisurely holidays, pool parties, easiest excuses for ice cream, TV show marathon, lazing around with a gripping book and quaint picnics. Last Sunday I wanted just that…but with The Boy busy on his Eurotrip, I turn to my second love….Books but with a change in scene. That’s when lightning struck! Why not construct a cosy picnic for one? 

food, home decor

Making the most of my apartment building, I decided to rustle up a cosy nook on the terrace. But you know me and how crazy I get with planning things… I really wanted this “me time” picnic to be perfect. 

food, home decor

To start with I turned to a trusted source – Flipkart.com. I’ve always bought all my books and electronics there but rarely ventured further than that. Until now when I really needed quality home decor items to be delivered to me as soon as possible. Knowing the brand’s super efficient delivery service, I decided to explore their Home & Kitchen section for products to complete the setting I pictured in my tiny head. It took me a couple of days to choose my favourite things because I like variety (and I am a typical Libran) and Flipkart.com’s Home Store is as various as it gets. From serveware, glasses and curtains to tea sets, bed linen and decoratives, this girl was spoilt for choice! Plus, there’s something for every kind of budget – the affordable “value for money” or the high end kind, the prices are at their very best.

food, picnic

food, picnic, flipkart

Once I was done making up my scatter brain, the products were delivered to me, with tons of bubble wrap (yay), in a few days. The first breather of week saw me and my little things up on the terrace setting up for a quiet, rustic setup. 

picnic, food, home decor

home decor, food, picnic

I went for an airy, all white theme. JBG Home Store Cotton Solid Double Bedsheet’s is spread on the concrete floor and peppered with some beauties. For a touch of whimsy a Gifts By Meeta Cage that stands spectator to the beauty while a Importwala Hanging Ball Big Glass Tealight Holder delicately holds a few marigold flowers. A brown Onlineshoppee Wooden Cutting Board is used as an assorted cheese board with crackers and grapes and is placed near the sweet Wink Jute Bread Basket that’s filled with delicious bread sticks. For that extra bit of sprinkle, those Chrome 3 Piece Salt & Pepper Set shaped like adorable Panda heads lay happily around. For a bite of brunchy goodness, some waffle with honey on a Corelle Winter Frost plate.
home decor, flipkart, picnic

See in the bargain of being a grown up, we traded in our perfectly fabulous summer vacas for occasional weekends. Let’s make the best of those two days that disappear oh-so fast. And what better than to put together an intimate picnic for two…maybe even one. My picnic for one was a roaring hit: I caught up with my reading, drank some vino, had me some cheese and broke some delicious bread while I surrounded myself by pretty things. Give it a go, I bet you will love it!  
 picnic, flipkart, home decor

All the home decor items are from Flipkart.com while all the food is from Foodhall. 
Styling and Photography by Aditi Gaitonde

Review: Magnum Choco Cappuccino

If you know anything about me, you will know my two weaknesses: Coffee & Chocolate. I know a lot of people who share my craze for these two sinful elements. And the other day, Magnum took it a step further. They recently launched their newest flavour – Magnum Choco Cappuccino – and I was one of the first few foodies to have the pleasure of tasting it.

If that wasn’t good enough, we did it with two of the biggest names the world of chocolate and coffee – Asia’s best pastry chef Janice Wong and World Barista Champion Fritz Storm. On the Sunday of 22nd February, Magnum invited a host of Bombay’s food bloggers for a super Masterclass 2.0 with this awesome twosome.

Fritz, who has an hilarious sense of humor, spoke to us about the intriguing world of coffee from its production and selection right up to brewing and pairing. If there was one thing that he ingrained in all of us was the importance of flushing the coffee maker before every brew. Janice, who’s confidence was contagious, narrated the tale of cocoa and talked about experimenting with her favourite muse. She even went on to create a scrumptious mousse with just 3 ingredients – chocolate, egg whites and water!

The Verdict
When we came to tasting the new Magnum Choco Cappaccino, the first crack of the chocolate coating resonated in the room and it was immediately following by a chorus ‘mmmmm’. This new Magnum flavour is available across outlets from March 1, 2015. It came as a surprise but there is one distinct element of the sweet-salty caramel that you cannot miss. I would have loved more coffee in the ice cream but that’s just me and my craze for black coffee talking.

Review: Pure Sin Chocolates

To be extremely honest, I dislike homemade chocolate. I find it odd tasting and not at all pleasurable. And chocolate that doesn’t make you go “ummm…” is a phony and should be destroyed that very minute. So when the folks at Pure Sin Chocolate approached to review their creations, I was rather sceptical. But we’re not the kind to make hasty judgements, are we? So like a good food blogger, I said “Try me”.

Packaging: I love the understated packing of the assorted chocolates that I got. Predominantly black, the tiny stripped box came wrapped with a silver ribbon. One of my major problems with independent chocolatiers is their ghastly packaging: all the shiny gold and reds and what not. But my Pure Sin box was not loud or gaudy. On opening this said box, I found fun sized chocolates wrapped in pearl white paper with a dull gold sticker that stated its cheeky name and gave hints to my tastebuds. So, extra point for presentation!

Taste: I simply love chocolate that begins to melt with atmospheric heat. On this super sultry day, my almond rock began to melt onto my finger tips….just the way I like it. If you are looking for Royce like melt in your mouth chocolate, you may proceed towards the next exit. But much to my surprise, Pure Sin chocolates do tenderly melt with the slightest of pressure.

While digging into my little treasure box, I found a note. A small foldable booklet that told me all I needed to know about each and every assorted flavouring….from Baby Latte and It’s Dark on Marz to Berry Got D’Crunch and Chip Off The Ol’ Bloc. Yes, those names are endearing and made me smile wider. If I had to name my favourite, I’d have to say I am torn between The Dark Mint Rise that has subtle hints of mint cream mousse to flavour dark chocolate and Roses Are Brown that was a fresh rose petal cookies dipped in dark chocolate.

Verdict: Pure Sin Chocolates has been around since 1993 and they clearly are doing something right!

Recipe: Cinnamon Infused Vodka

In no rush to get off the cinnamon obsessed ride. It’s probably true love. And introduce alcohol to this relationship and there’s no turning back. So vodka is one of the easiest things to infuse after of course tea (we will come to that soon) and cinnamon is strong contender.

WHAT YOU NEED 
  • Non flavoured vodka 
  • Few sticks of cinnamon 
  • A clean jar 
HOW TO INFUSE VODKA WITH CINNAMON
1. Make sure the jar is clean and dry
2. Pour some vodka in it
3. Leave some cinnamon barks in there 
4. Seal shut and keep aside 
Don’t be alarmed when the colour turns into a nice transparent honey brown. That’s the bark working. Give it a couple of hours and enjoy your drink with some bubbling soda. 

Mini Review: The Pantry, Mumbai

Mumbai’s Fort area is probably one of the most charming places in the city. Into a tiny blink-n-miss lane, find The Pantry – a quaint little hideout where I stopped for some mid-evening tea. Draped with white and the faintest hints of olive grey-green, the place is a dream in the evening – from its open kitchen, casual seating to the recycled timber table tops and French cafe-esque ambience. Oh did I mention free Wi-Fi and good music?

Forks Up, Folks
Vintage tea sets on reclaimed wood table tops
We ordered precisely three side snacks as this was merely an impromptu stop-over to the main course. Bare in mind, this is a mini review. Started off with Kashmiri Kawah (Rs 145) that gladdened the corners of my heart with undertones of warm spices. 
Pardon the grains in the images, it was late evening. 
From the Grab N Go section of the menu, Pineapple Scone (Rs 95) was up next. I was expecting scones with pineapples and was a little intrigued when I was served scones with a side of candied pineapple and whipped cream. The scones were lighter than air. Team that with the perfect side of pineapple and I was sold. Accompanied with smack of cloud like whipped cream and those taste buds did a jig. And to end it all, it had to be a dessert. For how else are we suppose to judge a place but by its lemon curd? Lemon Yogurt Cake with Classic Lemon Curd (Rs 165) was the perfect size for a guiltless indulgence. Light and crumbly, it fell apart at the softest of touch while the lemon curd didn’t disappoint.  
Decor idea to steal: Old milk can, spray painted white, to be used as a flower vase  
  All Images by Slow Motion Thoughts

Recipe: No Bake Rustic Apple Pie

Cinnamon and winter…there’s something utterly romantic about this relationship. Hands down my favourite spice ever, the tiniest dash of cinnamon can induce such warmth to a dish or drink. So the other day, I was feeling rather fidgety and experimental. With the limited ingredients in my pantry, a lot of research and some instinct, I dove into the cookroom with one goal – Must. Have. Cinnamon. Now. So, you’re going to see a lot of cinnamon-y recipes coming over the course of a few weeks. For starters, throw in some juicy apples and a respectable amount of butter, dear lord we’ve got a winner. Makes the perfect little no bake, rustic and open apple pie for two. 
INGREDIENTS 
  • 1.5 tbsp butter (for the filling) + 2 tbsp butter (for the crust)
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 medium size apples
  • 1 pack of Unibic ginger nut cookies
  • 1 tbsp vanilla custard
  • 3-4 tbsp water
  • ½ cup or less castor sugar
METHOD FOR CRUST
  1. Melt 2 tbsp butter in a pan
  2. Crush all biscuits into fine powder
  3. Pour melted butter over the powdered biscuits and mix
  4. Line a ramekin dish with this mixture and refrigerate.

METHOD FOR FILLING

  1. Melt 1.5 tbsp butter in a pan
  2. Add cinnamon and custard powder. Mix to remove lumps
  3. Add diced apples and mix well. Add water.
  4. Cover the pan and let it simmer till the apples soften. This should take about 15-25 minutes. 
  5. Add sugar and mix to integrate. Taste the filling to check the sugar and adjust accordingly. 
  6. Let it cool and pour over the refrigerated crust.  
NOTE
To keep apples from browning while you are cutting them, soak them in water with some lime juice. For 1 cup of water, 1 tsp lime juice. The 3-4 tbsp water required for the cook can be taken from this itself. Additionaly, it is best to start with lesser sugar and work your way up the desired state of sweetness.

All Images by Slow Motion Thoughts

Easy & Healthy Snack: Roasted Fox Nuts

4PM. Im hungry. It’s too late in the day to binge on something sweet (not like that really ever stops me), but my hunt for a healthy snack ended when I heard about makhana or Fox nuts. The name might sound a little like butter and animal body parts but it’s vegetarian and reminds me of popcorn. Apparently, its a seed of Euryale Ferox (some sort of water growing plant that resembles a lotus). To make it further exotic, it’s named after a Greek mythology creature. Fox nuts are touted to have medicinal properties besides of course being low on calories.

This one is easy and how.  
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 10-13 minutes
INGREDIENTS
1 small bowl of fox nuts or makhana
2 tbsp ghee 
1 tsp salt 
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp chat masala
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp chilli powder 
METHOD
  • On a hot non stick pan, melt ghee and top over the fox nuts 
  • On low to medium flame, begin to roast them. After a while, it might get a little smoky but don’t worry. 
  • Continue to roast for 10 odd minutes till they are crisp. Keep stirring. You don’t want it burning. 
  • Taste one to check its crunchiness. It ought to be crunchy enough for you to like it. Continue till the crispiness is just right (for you). 
  • Mix all the masalas in a small bowl and sprinkle the powder over the roasting fox nuts. Stir for 30-45 secs. You don’t want the dry powder to burn. 
  • Take it off the heat.
  • Let it cool and store in an air tight container.  
  • Booyah… healthy 4pm snack ready! 
All Images by Slow Motion Thoughts

Recipe: Wheat Flour Halwa

This one is an office favourite. Doused with ghee, this relatively quick cook is a super yummy, melt-in-your-mouth treat. This recipe is mostly borrowed from my friend Omna’s mom, who is a cooking genius and makes the raddest of halwas for the dessert craving, ever grateful folks at the office. I hope one day, with enough practice, my wheat flour halwa will turn out like hers.
Ingredients
1 cup clarified butter (ghee)
1 .5 cups wheat flour (atta)
1 cup sugar
3 cups water
Method
  1. Dump all the ghee in a non-stick vessel. Add all the wheat flour to it. If it’s too runny, you can take the liberty of adding a little more flour so that it is in a lumpy, powdered state.
  2. Roast the flour on medium to low flame. This portion takes the most time. It should take about 15 odd minutes to attain a brown colour. You can add almond halves and resins to this to let the dry fruits roast a bit too. Keep stirring the mixture constantly to avoid burning.
  3. While the wheat flour is being roasted, make the sugar syrup. Dunk all the sugar in a vessel with all the water. Let it simmer for a while till all the sugar has melted and the liquid has a smooth consistency.
  4. Take the wheat flour mixture to check if it is cooked well. Once it is nice and a darker shade of brown, slowly add the sugar syrup to the mixture. Stir well on medium low flame. The colour will turn to be deeper shade of brown. Stir to avoid lumps. Keep stirring till the clarified butter (ghee) starts to leave the halwa.
  5. Taste the halwa. Is the sugar just right? If it is low on sugar, add some to the mixture and stir well. Allow it to melt and incorporate with the mixture. The mixture is pasty but not runny or lumpy.  
  6. Tip: Get creative with the presentation. Halwa isn’t the prettiest looking sweet dish so I used a cookie cutter and a small scoopy spoon to shape it. 

All Images by Slow Motion Thoughts

Review: GAIA’s Green Tea + Tulsi

When the folks at GAIA sent over their tea, I was curious and how. Green tea, on its own, is an acquired taste for most and add a dash of tulsi to it to make it healthier… well it could either go really good or really bad from here. I’ve been trying out green teas for a while in a bid to lose some meat and this one definitely goes in the “hmm…interesting” pile.

I take my green tea with a teaspoon of honey. Now, this tea bag doesn’t need more than 3 dips to change colour in pipping hot water. Tulsi has a tendency to make the concoction bitter so I stuck to 2 few second dips and I suggest you do the same, unless you like your tea strong. 
My favourite thing about tulsi flavoured tea is the earthy aroma that transports me to a rainy day by the hillside. And this tea didn’t disappoint there. I also like how the packaging suggests you save and refrigerate used tea bag as facial cleansers and eye packs. 
FACT FILE
No of bags: 25
Price: Rs 150
Verdict: The other day, I completely forgot about my tea and it ended up cold. Before I could zap it in the microwave, I took a few sips (I’m adventurous like that) and guess what, it tastes great when its room temperature cold. When it’s hot though, I like it mild with honey. The tulsi can get a tad overpowering so dip with caution as per your taste.    

Review: Moshe’s Apple Honey & Cinnamon Jam

On an impromptu trip to FoodHall, I spotted his little jar. Apples, Honey, Cinnamon: Three of my favourite ingredients put together to make a jam. What could ever go wrong? Consistency of the jam, unlike most gelatin filled jams in the market, is soft, which I liked. Super excited, I slathered it generously on my multi-grain oats bread and took my first bite.

It did nothing for me. Second bite. Again…nothing. I couldn’t taste/smell cinnamon…which was a big disappointment considering there is a piece of bark in the jar. As for apples, there’s no denying that’s there but what’s that tangy flavour I keep getting?
Lime juice. It’s a bit overpowering. I am big fan of lime but not when I’m promised cinnamon. Now that I have already bought the bottle, I need to finish it. Turns out it tastes slightly better when it is refrigerated and used. 
FACT CHART
Price: Rs 105
Weight: 250gm
Ingredients: Apples, honey, cinnamon, sulphurless sugar, pectin, lime juice
Verdict: Maybe I set my expectations too high considering it’s Moshe’s and cinnamon. But if you say cinnamon on the bottle, a bark in the jar isn’t enough. I want more flavour and less lime. Or maybe, simply rename it to apples, honey and lime for accuracy.  
All images by Slow Motion Thoughts

Mission Baking – Chapter 3 – Cupcakes with Frosting

I came home from work one day all pumped to bake my heart out. And that’s exactly what I did. I figured I’d try cupcakes once again in a bid to perfect it.

I have never really tried my hand at frosting before so I was kind of nervous. The outcome was rather decent but I think I went a tad overboard with vanilla essence. The cupcakes were perfect and light. Raised just right. Most of them were plain cupcakes but I decided to add a little cocoa powder to the batter for the last few. I also noticed the second batch of cupcakes seemed to raise more than the first. Wild guess…baking soda must take a while to work I guess. 
The frosting I chose was rather simple and oh-so-yum : Nutella Buttercream Frosting! I saw it on this blog. Didn’t have unsalted butter so used salted low-cholesterol one and didn’t have bitter chocolate either to skipped it. Since the butter was salted, I skipped the last magic ingredient too. Despite all these alterations to the original recipe, the end result of this Nutella Buttercream Frosting was rather nice but I’m sure its much better if you follow the recipe. 
So here is the original recipe!

Ingredients
1 cup unsalted butter 
1 1/2 cup icing sugar 
2 tsp vanilla essence 
3/4 cup bitter chocolate 
1/2 cup Nutella 
1 tbsp milk
pinch of salt

Method
1) In a bowl combine soft butter and icing sugar. Beat it well on low speed
2) Combine vanilla essence and beat again. Add the melted, semi-cooled chocolate and beat well till all ingredients blend well.  
3) Add Nutella, milk and salt. Beat again. 
4) Pipe away. 

Mission Baking – Chapter 2 – Chocolate Chip Cookies

Good ol’ chocolate chip cookies. That’s what I set out to make. Armed with pictured recipe from wikihow, I still chose to add an extra egg. When will I learn?

“Stick to the recipe”, “There is a reason why its called a recipe, you know!”…have heard this from #TheBoy a bunch of times…and with my trial bite, heard his words ring in my head again.

They weren’t as crunchy as I would’ve liked them to be. But popular opinion said it was yum. Note: the people (office folks & friends) I feed my baking experiments are ruthless foodies that don’t hesitate in finely chopping the chef, if needed. With sounds like ummm, mmmm, hmmmm coming from these guys, I’m happy that my ‘double chocolate chip cloud’ was edible!

Here is the recipe I followed. http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Chocolate-Chip-Cookies
I don’t know what got into me that I decided to add an extra egg. I think that’s what made it a little soggy. I suggest you stick to the recipe. I also chose to add 2 cups of chocolate chip for that something extra *wink*

posted from Bloggeroid

Mission Baking – Chapter 1 – Vanilla Muffins

My first ever attempt at making muffins. Didn’t go that well…the batter could have risen more. In hindsight, I figured my mistake was that my dough was too hard. It needed to softer…would’ve made a world of a difference. I won’t give the recipe now…only after I have perfected it

Review: Global Fusion

17th June, 2012
Mum and I went to Global Fusion, Bandra to celebrate her birthday. It was a last min decision based on zomato.com‘s customer rating. China Gate’s Global Fusion sat pretty at no.1. This sight was reason enough to ditch out other two buffet options … Busaba (Lower Parel) and IBar (Bandra).

We hadn’t even started eating yet and we were two happy peaches!
The decor, the fascinating spread of south east asian cusine, impeccable service and the overall ambiance of the place had us floored.

A sigh of relief escape me, mother liked the place and she was enjoying herself. Choosing this place on a customer review rating, that could have been potentially rigged with spammers, was a shot in the dark. I wanted her birthday lunch to be PERFECT.
And so it was…

Thank you Global Fusion. My only only slighly negative comment…maybe ‘Global’ wasn’t the most appropriate  word to describe this restaurant. Now Asian Fusion, I would believe…

posted from Bloggeroid

Of Thunder Thighs & Truck Tyres

Warning: This blog is written under conditions of self-pity. Reader discretion is advised

Karma is a sour lil’ witch, who was once done wrong and is now out for ruthless revenge. All my life I’ve taken pride in a chromosomal trait that I strongly believe I’m bestowed with… my true inheritance which is popularly know as ‘fast metabolism’. I hogged and it never showed. Most called me under-nourished, I called me ‘skinny and hot’.

I made it a point, a mission even, to rub my superior metabolism powers in the chubby faces of the obese/overweight population. Management folks call it negative reinforcement, but I prefer the phrase ‘I’m hot, your not’. You would find me parked in an American food chain joint shoving my face with calorie-infected cheese-covered chucks of meaty heaven as I smiled politely at friends who wondered out loud ‘Where does all that food go?!’.

Two years and a Bangalore later, the same set of friends know exactly where that food went. I repeat, Karma is a witch. I truly didn’t realize the gravity of the situation, till I put on a sizable amount of meat, enough to feed a small African country. I can barely look at myself in the mirror without cringing. Yes, this is a blog post about my weight.

Phase 1: Denial
Every time my skinny fit jeans struggled to fit, I blamed it on the laundry guys. Those clothes shrinking idiots! I blatantly refused to believe the slightest probability that I might be gaining some. To counter the accusation from my friends and my clothes, I ate more in a bid to prove them horribly wrong.

When I couldn’t deny the evident paunch, I blamed it on everything from standing too close to the mirror, to beer…from PCOD to water retention….from desk jobs to indigestion. And then it happened, I ran out out of excuses. Everyday, I bloat after hogging and like clockwork you will find me exclaiming, “I think I have a stomach infection!”. Now that I look like a spectacle wearing cow in her 3rd trimester, I can’t fool myself anymore.

Phase 2: Half-Admission and Self-Pity
This is where I am. Got TLC’s chart topping single ‘Unpretty’ in a perpetual loop on the vinyl player in my head. I find myself looking at old picture of the thin me. I find myself being slapped by reality every time I pass by a reflecting object. I find myself blogging about it. And like clockwork I blame those worms/bacteria/extra-terrestrial aliens in my tummy on a mission to destroy me by taking away the one true thing I own (See: Fast Metabolism)

A few drinks down last Saturday, I stared into the vast view from sky scraper. Vast like my waist size. I made half an admission to myself, I think I might be a little overweight.

To be continued…