Mutter Paneer

Flavourful. Reasonably healthy. Quick and easy to make. Mutter paneer is a traditional and much loved, vegetarian Indian recipe. You have likely come across it before. Well, here is my homemade attempt to make it without any cream or butter or precise recipe.

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Chickpeas with a Kick

Though a better fit for summer, Chana Chaat made a good and light meal for a late Saturday lunch. This is a very traditional Indian/Pakistani snack and appetizer. Quick and simple to make if you have the key ingredients already available at home. But what is the kick? You can vary the ingredients based on your own flavour palette but this snack needs to be spicy and tangy.

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The Cookie Redemption

The first time I baked chocolate chip cookies, they stayed and cooked as the drops I had put on the baking sheet. The balls of dough looked nothing like the fresh, flat and goeey chocolate chip cookies I had hoped would come out of the oven. So, last week, I found a better recipe and set off on my second attempt. Spoiler: I ate about 8 of these cookies within two days myself.

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Coffee, Please!

Once, a daughter complained to her father that her life was miserable and full of problems. She was tired of fighting and struggling all the time. It seemed as if just when one problem was solved, another one soon followed.

Her father, a chef, took her to the kitchen. He filled 3 pots with water and placed each one on a high fire. Once the 3 pots began to boil, he placed potatoes in one pot, eggs in the second pot, and ground coffee beans in the third pot. After 20 minutes, he turned off the burners, and put the potatoes and eggs in separate bowls, and poured the coffee in a cup.

Turning to his daughter, he asked, “What do you see?”

“Potatoes, eggs, and coffee,” she hastily replied.

“Look closer,” he said, “and touch the potatoes.”

She did and noted that they were soft. He then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. Finally, he asked her to sip the coffee. Its rich aroma brought a smile to her face.

“What does this mean?” she asked.

He then explained that the potatoes, the eggs, and the coffee beans had each faced the same adversity – the boiling water. However, each one reacted differently to the situation. The potatoes went in strong and hard, but in boiling water became soft and weak. The egg was fragile, with the thin outer shell protecting its liquid interior, until it was put in the boiling water. Then the inside of the egg became hard. However, the ground coffee beans were unique. After they were exposed to the boiling water, they changed the water itself and created a new liquid.

“Which are you?” he asked his daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a potato, an egg, or a coffee bean?”

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Cranberry Almond Biscotti

Cooking for oneself and family is healthy and therapeutic. The process gets me to relax and I know better what we are eating, especially with diet controls needed in the house for sugar and salt. I am not great in the kitchen but I am learning. I am perfecting my knowledge a few recipes and techniques at a time. I love biscotti as a delicious snack with tea or between meals. It was only my second time making biscotti so there were plenty of hiccups. I even tried to make a video to share a part of the process with you but it was too bad to share. Cooking something edible, hopefully also delicious, is important for me and a good source of growth and motivation. I know I will get better at that with time and patience. For now, try and enjoy this recipe.

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