MIA…

Tagged as: food, home

I started blogging regularly end of last year. With the Blog-A-Week challenge, I thought I would stick to the routine. But with the remodeling project, work and other things, the blog was relegated to things-we-never-get-around-to list. We started concentrating on the house again. So now that the renovating is almost close to the finish line, its back to blogging. What have we been upto in the meantime..

Cooking:

Tandoori chicken w/ mint chutney & charred veggies

Zulu trying his hand at Mediterranean food

Breakfast

Our take on sunnyside up


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Good Eats … I ummm so sad…

Tagged as: food

Now that good eats has been officially declared to be discontinued … I am really disappointed but at the same time excited about the new stuff from Alton Brown . So here’s a run down of all the episodes … yeah all 249 of them courtesy Chicago tribune. I am sure I will be using them and so sharing on this platform too.

Steak, potatoes, eggs, salad, roasted chicken, ice cream, biscuits, gravy/roux, onion soup, fish, pasta, pilaf, chocolate, roasted turkey, fruitcake, fondue, grilled cheese, apples, pie crust, sugar/caramel, canning, shrimp, coffee, corn, fish and chips, ground beef, tomato sauce, mushrooms, clarified butter, pork ribs, tofu, mussels, quiche/custard/flan, duck, chocolate chip cookies, grilling, pickling, butter, pancakes/maple syrup, cabbage, pizza, beans, poaching, turkey leftovers, smoking/smoked salmon, pressure cooking, fried chicken, lobster, ham, angel food cake, pot roast, honey, garlic, mayonnaise, puff pastry, tea, chili peppers, gelatin, oats/haggis, crepes, roast beef, bacon, eggplant, cheesecake, squid/wok cooking, cocoa powder/brownies, squash, macaroni and cheese, clams, potatoes, tuna, strawberries, artichokes, yogurt, souffle, tomato, home brewing, dip, pork chops, choux pastry, casseroles, ravioli/tortellini, slaw, yellow cake, buttercream frosting, beets, roulade, crab, pulled pork, french omelet, muffins, chicken stock, sausage, steak/fajita/sirloin, steaming, grains, candy, sweet potato, sugar cookie, herbs, spices, corn dogs/sliders, fudge, nuts/pesto, lemon meringue pie, bread toast, banana, hollandaise sauce, oysters, flattened meat, doughnuts, wonton, chili con carne, sandwiches, soup, cheese, chocolate, grits/polenta, stuffing, pudding, melon, myths, coq au vin, carrots, leeks, baking, gyros, greens, rice, peas, shish kebab, beef jerky, ice cream, energy bar, sushi, cobbler, vinegar, waffle, meatball, avocado, pocket pie, eggnog, vanilla, beef tenderloin, cocktails, flounder, pad thai, scallop, olives, tortillas, barley, sweet yeast breads, cube steak, water, peaches, okra, squid, calamari, popcorn, peppercorns, deep fried turkey, lentils, tortillas, gumbo, cornish game hen, pomegranate, corned beef, espresso, spinach salad, milk, pretzels, coconut cake, substitutions, whole fish, dried fruit, beef stew, dill pickles, peanuts, green bean casserole, blueberries, marshmallow, knives, buffalo wings, apple pie, broccoli, crown of lamb, cranberry, cupcakes, dutch ovens, popovers, celery, tuna, oils, preservations, mincemeat, edamame, graham crackers, creole-style beans and rice, baklava, ginger, brussels sprouts, oranges, molasses, salmon, crawfish, tamales, spaghetti, pork tenderloin, parsnip, punch, breakfast, cooking with beer and wine, pound cake, trout, Japanese ingredients, spirits,diets, cocktails, salt, chicken and dumplings, curry, catfish, paella, porterhouse steak, grilled chicken, asparagus, eggs benedict, wood-fired pizzas, banana pudding, tacos, tempura, oats, homemade candy, summer squash, pumpkin pie, meringue, hummus, devil’s food cake, chicken pot pie, lasagna, bouillabaisse, bread pudding, yeast rolls, cauliflower, Asian noodles.

Puff Pastry Paradise …

Tagged as: appreciation, food

Puff Pastry… (pause)…..PUFF PASTRY…..

From my 1st grade school cafeteria till yesterday, its one thing that has always been such a mystery to me, which I always loved to eat but somehow had this question too that how on earth do they make so many layers of crunch which taste so good, when will I be a citizen of the Puff Pastry world?  I still remember spending my collections of coins, (5th grade school) which I had collected over a period of 6 months for that  2min pleasure of a crunchy Rs2.5 veggie puff (and have no regrets too)

Well that mystery did let me in today, I finally did it, and I “MADE MY OWN VEGGIE PUFF”. I just cant believe, I made an egg puff, a veggie puff and now the flood gates have opened.

It was Thursday and we decided to take the surface road to home while picking up mince chicken at the “Halal Market”. I saw a pack of puff pastry sheets in the freezer, jumped through the thoughts starting from   “No” to “Will I be able to???” to “Can I?” and finally resting  on “Lets try it, how bad can it get” . Reached home, took the pack out and looked at it  again. And again, repeat “No”, “Will I be able to???” “Can I?”. But this time I was really tired to get to the “Lets try it, how bad can it get”  and Thursday became history soon. Friday went with the same pace too.
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Todo list: Weekend 04/03

Tagged as: home, todo

Update: I started this post as a todo list this Friday and decided that I would post this after I was done crossing out some of the things on the list. And I did!! On Saturday 🙂 So with every muscle, that didn’t get a workout in the past, aching, I present to you the todo list for the weekend:

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Since we moved to this house in Oct, we haven’t done anything with the yard. Well, that’s not true. We did dig up the entire backyard to get rid of the thing that masqueraded as a lawn. And as rookies, we did it without the use of any powered tools or taking the simple route of using sod. ‘It’ comprises of turning the soil, removing the grass, mixing the fertilizer, seeding, and covering with top soil. Since both, L & I, work didn’t have spare time during the week, we did this over 2 weekends. And then it rained. We were in luck since we didn’t have to water it. We waited an entire week to see signs of grass. One early morning, just before leaving for work, when I peeked outside, I saw birds nibbling at the grass. And squirrels!! C’mon!! Not fair!! After all the blisters and aches, we ended up with a patchy lawn. And that killed our enthusiasm to bust our butt in the winter doing yard work. Result — a yard full of weeds. And we are ‘that’ house on the block that doesn’t take care of the yard. So we decided to get in a gardener. But as luck would have it, the gardener who gave an initial quote of $500 to clean both the yards and get rid of all the weeds, upped his quote to $1000 just ‘coz he wasn’t available for a month after the first quote & now apparently the work has doubled. I was so pissed off when I heard his revised quote that I decided to take matters into my own hands & clean up on my own. So this weekend is going to be dedicated to yard work.

  • Mow the grass (We got the Fiskars Reel Lawn Mower and its amazing. So now we have a mowed lawn!!)
  • Trim the bougainvillea
  • Kill/remove most of the weeds (This a harder battle to win. The weeds on the front yard are trimmed down.. still working on side spaces)
  • Plant something in the area next to the main entrance (Since it was overcast yesterday & we were eager to try the lawn mower before it started raining, we didn’t get any plants 🙁 But the weekend isn’t over yet ;))

Cheers 🙂

Bath remodeling

Tagged as: home

With so many references to moving to the office, I guess a post about the bathroom remodeling project was imminent. So some background.. Generally single family homes come with huge master bath with all the works.. Our house came with a 6’x3′ tiny bathroom with atleast a 4’x1.5′ no-man’s land. It was a tiny space between the exterior wall & a bad shower stall with a door that wouldn’t close. With no ventilation & a non-functional master bath, we knew that this was going to be our first project. Since this was completely beyond our expertise, we decided to get a contractor to have a look at it. So within a week, with the estimate in hand, we decided to take the plunge & starve for 5 months (kidding ;)) and started the tiles etc w/ the designer, signing, arguing about a tile or a pattern with L, falling in love with stuff I knew we couldn’t afford (cmon, $159 for a Restoration Hardware wall sconce ?) and obviously learning a lot along the way (now I know for sure that even though we love clean lines, modern isn’t really out style).

So finally now with 2 weeks into the project, and 3 more weeks to go, what do we have?

  • A new bedroom 😀 We sleep in the smaller bedroom now. (Flipside of using a room that you didn’t venture into before? you start noticing stuff that needs to be fixed.. sigh..)
  • Too many tools & pipes & stuff that I’ve never seen..
  • Shopping lists
  • A huge master bath in the works. Even though the walls aren’t up & they still have to put in the stucco since they are waiting for the inspection to pass for the window that was moved

What do we don’t have anymore?

  • No master bedroom 😛
  • Cash 😀
  • Mess.. surprisingly the people who do all the work are super careful about not making a mess. I have heard horror stories about mud being tracked all around the house. I guess we are lucky that way. They even put out the trash on the street yesterday when we forgot that it was trash pickup day.
  • The yucky brown powder sort of thing that passed as insulation in the attic. No wonder it was freezing in the winter..
  • The marble vanity with green flecks (yayy!)

The pics of the ongoing renovation: (Note: sorry for the bad picture quality..)

Update: Removed the pics!

Todo list – Weekend 03/27

Tagged as: home

Now that spring is officially here (even though the weather is rebelling, thanks to rains & cloudy weather), I decided to get started with the spring cleaning. The first room on the list is the kitchen. Since this is where we spend most of our time in, the kitchen takes the cake for the room that needs the most attention. So this weekend’s todo list is centered around the kitchen. Here goes..

Kitchen:

  • Dishes
  • Clean countertop
  • Clean cooktop, microwave, oven
  • Mop floors
  • Get floor mats for the kitchen (repurposed the existing extra floor mats that we had around the house.. yayy for trimming down the shopping list :D)
  • Update: Organize pantry

Other:

  • Laundry
  • Clean the entryway
  • Move into the other bedroom from the office
  • Clean the office so that it can be actually used for what it was intended instead of a storage room
  • Work!!

Update: Surprisingly had a very productive Sunday. Except for the thing that pays the bills (read: work) finished everything! Putting up a todo list on the blog seems to be working where everything else has failed 😉 But I wouldn’t have been tick off all the items on this checklist had L not helped out with the kitchen stuff. And for being a good kid today I get to feast on L’s Palak Chicken 😀

Cheers m/

Tikka Tacos…cont…

Tagged as: appreciation, food, home, indian cuisine

The only place I can imagine “Tsingtao meets corn tortillas meet indian chicken curry” ….

a BAY AREA KITCHEN 🙂

As promised, pics of tikka tacos. Made them once again yesterday and this time peetu did let me take a pic :).