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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Celebrating My 100th Post! A Drink and a Few Tips

I can't believe that I am at my 100th post! And what is a better than to celebrating it with a celebration drink recipe and also, providing a lot of tips and tricks that  I have come to rely on a daily basis.

I generally spend about 30-45 minutes on daily meals and try very hard to not spend more time. Family, work, and chores have higher priorities and my goal is to make healthy, tasty and wholesome meals in the minimum time possible. So I am sharing a few tips that come in handy and make the cooking process much easier. So, if you a beginner, don't despair, things just get easier.

If you are a beginner or just want to reduce time in the kitchen here are a few tips that will come handy.

Tip 1: Do preparation work over the weekend or when you have some free time. This includes things like chopping different vegetables and storing them in ziploc bags or boxes. Vegetables that last well in the fridge for 3-4 days are onions, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, celery, cucumber.

Tip 2: You can knead dough and portion it out into appropriate quantities and then freeze it in an airtight container. It freezes beautifully. Then, thaw it during the day or overnight in the fridge, on the day you want to use it. Then prepare fresh rotis as needed.

Tip 3: If you don't want to roll out a lot of rotis on a daily basis, roll out the amount you need for 3-4 days and refrigerate. When you want to reheat, wrap it in a damp towel and then microwave for about 30 seconds. Serve the rotis hot, when they are soft. Try to minimize the number of times you re-heat for the freshest taste.

Tip 4: Plan ahead. Decide on a few menu options that you can prepare during the week. Then, make sure you buy the necessary items when you do your weekly grocery run. When you know what you are going to prepare that week, it's easier. You can decide on what kind of preparations you can do to facilitate the daily task.

Tip 5: A complete meal needs to have components like carbohydrates, protiens and vitamins. So, pick and combine different dishes,  so that you are including all these components in just a couple of dishes. Then you do not need to make elaborate or  multiple dishes to accomplish that. I will be putting together a list of various menus that you can use as a quick reference. Coming soon - watch out for it.

Tip 6: This is probably the most useful tip - use a pressure cooker. Pressure cookers are absolutely wonderful devices. They reduce cooking time is drastically. So if it's a recipe where there is a possibility, then do it. You will note how much time it helps you save. This is very noticable when you are cooking any kinds of beans, lentils or rice.

Finally here is the recipe I promised. This drink is the perfect accompaniment to any celebratory dinner.

Creamy Citrus Mocktail
1 cup orange juice
juice of 1 lemon
2-3 tbsp simple syrup
club soda
vanilla icecream
lemon slices

Mix together the orange juice, lemon and the simple syrup. Taste it to adjust the sweetness. Add more syrup if needed. When you are ready to serve it, pour the syrup and juice mixture into the glasses. Top it with some club soda (about 1/4 cup per glass) to create the fizz and then add a scoop of vanilla icecream to the drink. Garnish the glass with a slice of lemon.

Enjoy with your celebratory dinner. Also seen in these photos - Boondi Raita, Shahi Palak Biryani and Apple Cobbler.

To make simple syrup, heat 1 cup of water and dissolve one cup of sugar in it. Turn off the heat once the sugar is dissolved and let it cool. Simple syrup is ready.


  1. If you are serious about healthy eating, then you might want to invest in a good vegetable steamer. When you use a steamer, you can take almost any vegetable that is fresh, and cook it to perfection. A steamer will help retain many of the nutrients in the food, so it tastes good and is healthy for you. Look for a dual steamer that can also cook rice, as well.

    Healthy cooking tips

  2. 100 and going strong..congratulations and keep up the good work..the pictures on your blog make me crave for good food every time I visit :)