Monthly Archives: March 2017

Happy Gudi Padwa

Ashu wishes you all a very Happy Gudi Padwa / Ugadi. A happy Chaitra Navratri too.

Gudi Padwa is a festival celebrated in Maharashtra on the first day of the Chaitra month, it marks the beginning of the new year of the Hindu calender. Ā It is the time to welcome the mango season šŸ™‚ . Ugadi is celebrated in Andhra as the first day of the new year.

The rituals followed for this auspicious day are making colourful rangolis on the front entrance of the house, tying a marigold flowers and mango leaves toran at the entrance door. A gudi is setup and Ā  worshipped and an elaborate vegetarian meal is cooked and offered as Naivedyam. A Shrikhand Puri, or Amrakhand or Puran Poli sweet is made. Pachadi too is made in some houses, it is a neem leaves, tamarind and jaggery mixed liquidy dish. I do not make this, never learnt it, though my mother used to make it. Raw mango dishes too are made.

Sharing couple pictures from today. I have not made many a dishes like the masale bhath and raw mango daal etc, made puran poli for sweet though I got Alpohsnso mangoes for the Amrakhand that I did not make šŸ™‚ , will make it for the weekend menu! I made Bharli Vangi, mixed daal vadas/pakode, alu vadis, varan baath and mattha and fulkas. Even though I skipped some dishes but this itself was a heavy lunch, couldn’t stop with only one puran polišŸ˜€.

ashusphotography -Gudi
ashusrecipe-vegetarian meal

Wishing you all a blessed New yearĀ šŸ™‚ .




For this Week’s Photo Challenge: It is easy being Green,Ā I am sharing couple pictures from my Georgia travel.

Surround oneself with the beauty of nature and enjoy the best moments of the day šŸ™‚ , capturingĀ the different shades of green.

ashusphotography-WPC-Being Green
ashusphotography-Georgia travel
ashusphotography-Georgia Travel
ashusphotography-Georgia travel (Gudauri)
ashusphotography-Georgia travel (Gudauri)


Chicken Momos

ashu’s Steamed Chicken Momos

Chicken Momo is a dumpling which is one of my favorite and hence a frequently made food in my kitchen. I make it using refined flour and boiled chicken that is seasoned with simple seasonings. I have already shared a couple other recipes of momos, but the chicken momos was not yet posted.



Refined Flour: 250 gm

Boiled Chicken: 250 gm

Green Coriander: 2 Tbsp

Salt: To taste

Pepper: For Seasoning as per taste

Water: 1 glass (as needed)


Boil/Steam the chicken (I used 1 chicken breast) in a pressure cooker or rice cooker for a single vessel or 15 min.

Take a bowl and make a medium soft dough of the refined flourĀ to which a pinch of salt is added, and keep the bowl covered.

Shred the boiled chicken, add salt and pepper as per taste and the chopped green coriander. This will be our Momos filling.

ashuskitchen -Chicken filling for the Chicken Momos

Divide the dough into small balls and roll out thin circular puris. SpoonĀ the chicken filling Ā on the puri, and thenĀ  bring together and close all the ends giving a twist before sealing at the top. I prefer to remove the excess dough at the top end.

We canĀ give any shape to the dumplings, but I prefer the one seen in the pictures. The more one practices shaping and making the momos, the better the shape šŸ™‚ . IĀ like to make smaller shaped momos, easier to eat in a single or two bites. Also note, the thinner the outer coat, it tastes better, my personal preference here.

ashuskitchen-Chicken Momos

ashuskitchen-Chicken Momos kept ready for steaming

Brush the steamer basket with oil before putting the momos for steaming, this prevents them from sticking to one another or to the basket, and we can easily remove them without the filling falling over from torn momos.

Steam the momos for 10 minutes, until the flour cover becomes shiny.

ashu’s-Steamed Chicken Momos

Serve them hot with a dip of choice, I have served with the parsley pesto that was handy in my fridge. Click for the Parsley PestoĀ recipeĀ here. Ā It tastes best with the spicy red chutney made of tomato and ginger. You can click here for this recipe.

ashu’s- Chicken Momos

As always IĀ am happy to share with you all anotherĀ of my favorite and nutritious recipe. Hope you would like to give it a try in your kitchen too. Do click the links below for my other momos recipes:

Kheema (Mutton Mince) Momos

Tandoori Momos

Happy cooking delicious food šŸ™‚

















The Weekly Photo Challenge: Atop

For this photo challenge I am sharing pictures clicked Ā at night from Ā At The Top, Burj Khalifa, the 124th floor Observation deckĀ of the Burj Khalifa, Dubai, using my iPad-Air.

ashus photography-View below from At The Top, Burj Khalifa.
ashus photography-View below from At The Top, Burj Khalifa.

The view below from here leaves one spell bound, it is truly magical. šŸ™‚






My entry for theĀ Weekly Photo Challenge: Wish.

Jen has asked us to show a wish and let our blog be the ema to share it upon.

We often see people visiting places of worship and praying for their wishes to be granted. I am wishing here that all the wishes of those who wished at these places gets fulfilled šŸ™‚ .

I wish for peace and happiness to all.

Manakamana Temple, Pokhara, Nepal
Visitors going to the Tal Barahi Temple, Phewa Lake, Pokhara Nepal
Devis Falls, Pokhara, Nepal

People usually make a wish and throw a coin into the water, may all their wishes get fulfilled.

Wishing you all a great day ahead.




Khinkali, A Georgian Dish

ashusphotography-Georgia travel
ashusphotography-Georgia travel

The visit to Georgia in July 2016 introduced me to this dish- Khinkhali, a dish that I find to be a similar version of Momos that IĀ am so very fond of eating and making in my kitchen.

The first lunch after landing in Tbilisi, GeorgiaĀ in aĀ restaurant in the busy Tbilisi Center, the menu card displayed this bigger version of dumplings that looked similar to momos. The guide told us it is called Khinkali and also informed us the way how we were supposed to eat it. It is a boiledĀ dumpling with filling inside, a fried version could also be seen in the menu card. The inside filling could be of either Beef, lamb, chicken, potatoes or cheese etc. The menu card in the restaurant displayed the various Khinkali that were sold.

ashusphotography-Georgia travel
ashusphotography-Georgia travel

While visiting the Svetitskhoveli Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Mtskheta, we stopped for lunch in the neighboring restaurant and I was able to see and click these amazing pictures of the Khinkali in making.

The Khinkali are shaped and kept on a board and are ready to be put into boiling water.

ashusphotography-Khinkali added tot he boiling water for cooking.
ashusphotography-Khinkali added to the boiling water for cooking.
ashusphotography-Khinkali getting cooked
ashusphotography-Khinkali getting cooked
ashusphotography-Georgia travel
ashusphotography-Georgia travel

The hot Khinkali is then served to us and we hold at the folded top part and eat the rest of the khinkali and leave behind the top thick part on the plate. The filling is as per our choice and order.

I find it interesting to note that the mountainous regions are colder and one needs food that is easy to make, simple, and hot. The Nepal travel saw steaming hot momos being listed on the menu cards, the Georgian travel to the Mtshekta region saw theĀ Khinkali in the process of making. ThisĀ Georgian dish is famous throughout the country, and I would like to add here that it is similar to the steamedĀ Momos, only the size is bigger and also the coating seems to be thicker. The potato and cheese filled Khinkali was too bland for my taste with only salt added , hence I could not relish them both.

Travelling to places makes us aware of not only the region, landscape and people but also the food habits and one finds a lot of similarities in food across far-flung regions with similar dishes but having the regional names. I find similarity of the Khinkali to the dumplings that one gets to see in a Chinese, or Tibetan or a Nepal menu. Do take every opportunity to travel, so that the foodies like me get to learn new recipes after each tour šŸ™‚

I have tried making my version of the Khinkali yesterday and thatĀ will be my next post, so do return to check that out too šŸ™‚ .









My entry for this Week’s Photo Challenge: The Road Taken

I have always been fascinated to click pictures of the road that lays ahead or passed by while I am sitting in the passenger seat of theĀ moving vehicle. These pictures are from our Barbecue picnic outing with friends in the month of January 2017 to the Jabal Al Jais mountains in the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, UAE. We have to crisscross through the mountains to reach to the point at the top until where the road is open for public use, construction is still seen in progress further up this point.

The Jais mountain is part of the Hajar mountain range bordering Oman.Ā The tallest part of the Hajar mountain range lies in the neighboring Oman and the Jais mountain is the second largest of it that lies in the UAE.

WPC: The Road Taken to Jabal Al Jais
WPC: The Road Taken to Jabal Al Jais
WPC: The Road Taken to top of the Jabal Jais Mountain
WPC: The Road Taken to top of the Jabal Jais Mountain
WPC: The Road Taken
WPC: The Road Taken

This is the view from one of the mountain top that we had hiked to after parking the car at the end of the motor-able road that is open to public. The view is breathtakingly beautiful to see from here;Ā the cotton candy clouds, the sun rays giving a golden glow, the blue clear skies and the chilling winter air that sends a shiver through us, it indeed was a beautiful long drive that is worth driving on.

You can check out my post on the Jabal Al Jais mountain here.

ashu šŸ™‚


Paneer Kathi Rolls

ashuskitchen recipe -Paneer Kathi Rolls
ashuskitchen recipe -Paneer Kathi Rolls

The food packed for the school lunchbox should be nutritious, healthy, balanced and most importantly appealing to the kids. It is always challenging to manage to pack food keeping all these factors in mind, especially if the kids are foodies and very picky in taste. My kids, like most kids love Paneer, it is a good source of Vegetarian protein. It is one of the best ingredients to make recipes that are quick, easy to make as well as nutrient packed. Sharing here today one of the many recipes of Paneer that I make in my kitchen, an extremely easy and yummy roll that is best for school lunch, as breakfast or a wholesome snack for a brunch or picnic or travelling. My Jr. does not like it if I pack the vegetables and roti or paratha seperately, and hence the Wrap or Rolls always are a welcome food item.

Almost all households with kitchen have the basic spices and condiments handy, using the fresh ingredientsĀ like the paneer, green coriander, spring onions, fresh peas the rolls have a softer and more juicy filling and are very tasty. If fresh paneer and peas are not available then we can make use of frozen one, as I have done for this one. Having lived in Vadodara I am very fond of using Amul products in my kitchen and hence I sometimes get the frozen paneer packet to stock up the fridge for moments when I cannot get the fresh paneer from the stores. I am sure most of you too must be using Amul products, and have eaten Amul butter and CheeseĀ since childhood.

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 8-10 Rolls)

Paneer: 250 gm

Mutter/ Fresh Green Peas : 100 gm

Mixed Bell Peppers : 1 cup finely chopped

Onion/Spring onion: 1 Small

Oil: 2 Tbsp

Ginger Garlic paste: 1 tsp

Coriander Powder: 1 Tbsp

Red Chili Powder: 1 Tsp

Garam Masala Powder: 1 Tsp

Chat Masala Powder: 1 -2 Tbsp (as required)

Salt : To taste

Tomato: 1 small (Optional)


Defrost and dip the frozen paneer in hot water, this makes it softer. Drain and dry on a kitchen tissue roll. Grate or crumble the cubes and keep in a plate.

Heat a Kadai and put 2 tsp oil into it. Add the finely chopped onion.

Then add the ginger garlic paste, saute and then add the peppers and green peas. Cook for 3-4 minutes, fresh peas do not take long to cook.

Then add the paneer crumble and sprinkle all the dried spices and salt and mix well. Turn off the heat and lastly add the teaspoon of the garam masala powder.

TheĀ filling for the roll is ready.

Take the chapati and apply the parsley or Basil pestoĀ if you have it handy, then take a tablespoon of the paneer filling and lay it on the chapati, sprinkle pinch of chaat masala and roll the chapati carefully and tightly so that the filling does not spill out.

Roll out this size Chapati
Roll out this size Chapati
ashuskitchen recipe-Paneer Kathi Roll
ashuskitchen recipe-Paneer Kathi Roll

Make all the rolls and keep them in the grill machine for couple minutes so that the rolls becomeĀ crispy on the outside and retain the shape.

Cut the rolls and serve with a dip or simply pack them as isĀ for the school or office lunchbox.

NOTE: The tomato can be finely chopped and spread over the filling if the rolls are eaten instantly or otherwise can be added to the Paneer filling when it is being cooked.

For making the chapati follow the fulka recipe here. I made the roti a bigger size than the Fulka and applied oil/ghee on top of the roti and cooked it on the Tava/fry pan and not puffing it on the gas stove as for Fulka.

For the Parsley or Basil pestoĀ follow the recipe here.

You could avoid using the pesto and apply coriander mint chutney too if that is handy. I always keep these pesto handy in the refrigerator and henceĀ I can make the rolls at any given time as all the ingredients are readily available in my kitchen.

This recipe was saved to draft and was supposed to be on the blog earlier in January, but I completely forgot about it. I had made these rolls for my daughter when she was attending a Concert in Abu Dhabi on the New Year’s eve šŸ™‚ .

Hope you like thisĀ Zhat -pat recipe of mine and try it out in your kitchen.