Saturday, June 29, 2013

kung pao mushroom soup

I have been having this urge to eat chinese food for sometime now, and on thursday evening I was like I want to have something chinese. Wanted to try my hand at making my favourite "Manchow Soup" something I have never made before, and i always have without fail when I go to any restaurant in India. Maybe the reason I have not made it is, I am afraid I will not be able to re-create the restaurant style flavor. Anyways this time I didnt have all the ingredients for manchow too, (manchow has many veggies) but I knew the taste I desired and after a  quick look in my kitchen I decided I had enough ingredients to get to that taste. I have named this soup "Kung Pao Mushroom Soup", purely Rhythm's recipe :) I call it Kung Pao as I used Kung Pao sauce I had at home. If you have a different stir fry sauce that you like or use, you may use that, as long as you like the sauce flavor you ll like the soup, as that is the flavor of the soup.

Ingredients: (serves 2)
  1. 6 button mushrooms (chopped)
  2. 1 medium sized onion (finely chopped)
  3. 1 medium sized tomato (finely chopped)
  4. 1/2 green chilly (slit in two pieces)
  5. 3-4 cloves of garlic (finely chopped)
  6. 1/2 tbsp ginger paste
  7. 3 tbsp Kung pao sauce
  8. 1 tbsp sweet and sour sauce
  9. 1 tsp soya sauce
  10. 1/2 tbsp vinegar
  11. 3 cups water (or vegetable broth)
  12. pinch of aji na moto (chinese salt)
  13. salt to taste
  14. pepper to taste
  15. 1/2 tsp sugar
  16. 2 tbsp vegetable oil

  • Saute chilly, ginger paste, garlic and onion in oil. sprinkle some salt
  • Once onion looks tender, add chopped mushrooms. sprinkle chinese salt
  • add the Kung pao sauce, and sweet and sour sauce. 
  • after 2-3 min add tomatoes.
  • Once everything starts simmering together, blending together in a couple min add water/ broth.
  • add soya sauce, vinegar, sugar and pepper
  • as the soup boils it will gain flavor so be patient, let it boil for 10- 15 min, 
  • if you feel some flavor is missing feel free to add more sauces or vinegar to suit your taste buds.
Add pepper towards end or just before taking soup off the stove as if you add pepper as soup is still boiling it becomes very spicy (you guessed right, I did it and the soup did make me sweat a little)
if you like it thick (restaurant style) you may dissolve some corn starch in water and add the paste to the soup.

This is a super yummy soup very simple to make and with ingredients that you ll in your kitchen almost any day. Totally qualifies as indo-chinese soup :) I had it with spinach pesto sandwich, another easy to make dinner combination :) :)


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Happy Father's Day :)

As I sit to pen few words for my dad...I wonder where to begin..
A man of few words, my dad is the silent types. we (me and my sister) have always known how much he loves us.he always calls us his "dhingli" which means dolls...his presence always a silent strength..
but since I have been in USA and married, I have felt his presence in my life even more...
after the wedding, my dad told my husband privately "take care of my daughter"
when my husband told me this, i was like seriously??? I cant believe my dad said it, if my mom would have said it, i would not be surprised (those knowing my parents will understand why I am saying this)...
I mean, of course my husband is a good guy and he will take care of me, it is understood...
but the fact that, my dad said that meant the world to me....
there have been times, when I have not been sure of anything...
when doubts creep in, but I know one thing.
There is one man who wont let anything go wrong in my life...
who i can go to at any point, under any circumstances, for whom nothing matters more than my smile.
these years apart have taught a lot...made me realize a lot of things which I always took for granted...
(of course, this includes my ma too...)
i know that these two people will stand like a rock before something even touches me...
love you dad and mom...
will always be your little girl for you...Happy Father's day

While I am writing about my dad, i would like to mention my 2nd father-in-law...he is a simple man with a heart of gold...he brings a smile on my face just by his mere presence. he will listen to me than his son, he will make me a part of any important decision making process. wake up in middle of night to skype with me. he offers to help me in kitchen when I cook, insists on helping as I politely refuse. other family members tell me that his face lights up just by the mention of my name..when I am around him i feel as if i am his daughter....he and mom are a huge support too..

I am thankful to God to have blessed me with two sets of amazing parents...miss you all

Saturday, June 8, 2013

lessons learned from Yeh Jawaani Hai Diwani

Saw Yeh Jawani Hai Diwani last weekend.....this is not a movie review though...this is about some important life lessons conveyed in the movie in a very simple, easy going way....didnt make it preachy or too senti (well little senti but not an overdose) and very importantly without saying only THAT ONE WAY is right and other is wrong...

it is story of 4 friends...bunny, aditi, avi, and naina....story revolves mainly around Bunny (ranbir kapoor) who is a free spirited youngster wanting to explore the world...he doesnt want to be tied to a place or person...naina is exact opposite, she wants to be rooted in the place she has grown up in...wants to live in the city close to her parents and friends...the beauty of the story is in the second part when the friends meet for aditi's wedding after 8 years....Bunny has achieved his dream, has a job with travelling show...seen numerous cities in world...naina has lived her dream, owns a clinic....

i liked the bunny VS naina sequence, the your life VS my life part and at last they admit that none of them are wrong...we are just different (lesson 1) admitting that people are different and that not one way is the right way...

the joy of living in different cities cannot be compared to being able to catch up with old friends or being able to meet your parents as and when you wish....they are apples and gotta choose between one...and thats the second matter how much you try, you are going to miss something....if you do not make a conscious choice based on your priorities, circumstances/ life will make these choices for you and you wont be able to change it as the time has passed....

leading to the 3rd lesson...loved the dialogue "waqt beteta hai, par kharchte hum hai" meaning "time passes but we get spent"....if we do not have the priorities straight...time passes by and takes a toll on us if we do not utilize the time in an effective and conscious way keeping in mind the goal we want to achieve and set priorities accordingly.

Next lesson, "har cheez ka ek sahi waqt hota hai"...meaning "there is a right time for every decision/ action"...once my cousin told me, decisions are made to be a given point you might decide something and act accordingly...but with time, circumstances change, priorities do not hesitate to re-analyze your decisions and alter them as per your current situation...

i also liked the sequence, when bunny is not welcomed warmly by avi...when returning back he sees naina sitting with her feet immersed in water...the moment he tries to dip his feet, he instantly removes saying water is too cold...naina tells him, be patient and water will feel alright...and he slowly immerses his feet again and after little while he is OK...this is so true for every new situation we face in our lives...but if we just remain patient, we will get adjusted to it and the change will not seem so bad...

make new friends but do not forget the old...the friendships forged in growing up years cannot be replaced ever....the bonds are just not the same...sure make new friends...have fun...but keep in touch with the old friends...they are ones who know you, who you can be yourself with, they are your friends for no other reason besides the fact that they love you and care about you...

last and most important...the scene when Bunny has to leave for Chicago and sees his dad crying silently.....he tells him that he wont go if the dad says says OK dont go..and he says Fine i wont...then the dad tells him to go and that just the fact that bunny is willing to stay back for him is enough for him.....this is the story of every individual who has parents back in India...remember what they have done for you...that they have given us the opportunity to grow, learn and make our life not thinking about themselves even for a moment...their love for us is the most selfless love...always remember this throughout life..

wow...turned out to be lot longer than i expected...sorry if it seems like a lecture...go ahead watch the is fun though...liked all the is my favourite, loved ranbir's dance...
badtameez dil