CHICKEN SALAD WITH TAHINI DRESSING

Caesar, but not quite Caesar. I’ll elaborate: this salad has all the makings of a typical Caesar salad—lettuce, toasted bread, Dijon, anchovies, garlic, lemon and olive oil—but with one wildcard ingredient..tahini! Sounds strange to be adding this Middle Eastern sesame paste into the mix, but its nutty creaminess really complements the punchy hit of Dijon… Read more »

YORKSHIRE PUDDINGS WITH PEAR & GINGER COMPOTE

I lived in Yorkshire for a year and a half and never learned to make Yorkshire puds there (I did eat my fair share of them though). And here I am in Chennai fiddling about with ratios and proportions. I wish I’d foreseen this obsession a bit sooner. But thankfully these are ridiculously easy to… Read more »

OATMEAL CONGEE WITH MUSHROOMS

At this rate, I may as well make it official, pivot into a ‘breakfast only’ website and not worry about my lack of enthusiasm for anything else. If you’ll stick around, I promise to make it worth your while with (more!) French toast variations and nestling eggs into anything that even closely resembles a sauce…. Read more »

OVEN-ROASTED HONEY-CHILLI POTATOES

I often replace potatoes in recipes with yams, sweet potatoes and plantains. Not just for their better nutritional content, but also to get some variety in the food that we eat at home. Needless to say, I obviously wouldn’t replace them if they didn’t taste good. They do of course taste good. Dare I say,… Read more »

SOBA NOODLES WITH TOFU AND MANGO

Noodle salads have a lot going for them: they’re simple to throw together, versatile in terms of ingredients – vegetables, meats/meat alternatives and dressings, and they also keep really well for make-ahead meals. Any kind of noodle will work here but I’m partial to soba for its distinct nutty flavour. Try and find the Japanese… Read more »

BREAKFAST EGG SALAD (NO MAYO)

Had to add the ‘no mayo’ banner to the title to make it loud and clear that creaminess can be achieved without dousing everything in (my very biased, crude opinion)—goop. From being a downright rejecter of the eggy dressing, I’ve now become somewhat tolerant to it in a few, very specific things. But either way,… Read more »

LOADED SWEET POTATO WEDGES

Think loaded nachos with all the fixins—peppers, corn, onions, tomatoes, cheese—but with sweet potatoes instead of tortilla chips. Keeping with the Tex-mex theme, I also sometimes add olives and pickled jalapenos to the mix. Choose your own adventure and go with what you want/have on hand. The assemblage: I do a double layer here. You… Read more »

BALSAMIC FIG JAM

We make sure to get a good rotation of fruits and vegetables into our diet and not eat the same thing every week. So in this pursuit, I bought a whole load of figs when I chanced upon them. And then broke my head over what to make before they rotted on me. Typical. Nothing… Read more »

PASTA ROMESCO WITH KALE

What makes something a pasta sauce and not a dip? Or a soup, even? You roast and blend vegetables to make soups and dips, but can you not use the same emulsion to coat pasta? I don’t see why not. As an extension to that thought, I present to you my pasta romesco. Traditionally eaten… Read more »

ROASTED PLUM AND PANEER SALAD

    There’s no real stone-fruit season in Chennai. Sure, you have those few weeks around this time every year that you get plums, peaches and if you’re lucky, cherries and nectarines. But other than plums and the odd batch of rock-hard peaches that come from nearby hill stations, stores rely solely on produce from… Read more »

Latest
  • PASTA EGGPLANT INVOLTINI

    This paneer and spinach filling is a staple in our house. Which I’m sure is apparent by now. I’d like to think of myself as someone that can make one component work in multiple ways and in multiple dishes. On the flip side, isn’t that the very definition of being a one-trick pony though?! (My… Read more »

  • VERSATILE RED PEPPER & TOMATO CASHEW SAUCE

    This is (an inadvertently vegan) roasted red pepper and tomato sauce that uses cashews for creaminess in lieu of cheese, cream, or other forms of dairy. It’s very versatile and can be used as a pasta sauce, pizza sauce, chip dip, spread, or even as the base in baked dishes (eggplant involtini coming next). Basically… Read more »

  • CHIPOTLE BLACK BEAN SLOPPY JOES

    Sloppy joes and burgers. Although both use meat, vegetables, beans or a combination as their base and both are served on buns, their similarities end there. Sloppy joes are cooked in a sauce—the consistency is that of a thick bolognese—while burgers are formed into patties. Burger patties usually rely on binding agents like eggs and… Read more »

  • UPSIDE DOWN CRANBERRY-ORANGE FRENCH TOAST

    The title is a mouthful, I know. For someone that’s most comfortable cooking intuitively and without any measurements, writing recipes with precise instructions is hard enough. But over the years I’ve managed to maneuver my cooking style to fit that in. What I find harder, is writing recipe titles: I want it to be descriptive… Read more »

  • CHICKPEA AND SPINACH CHEESE TOASTS

    There’s a lot you can do with chickpeas which is why my pantry is rarely without it: added to curries like your typical chana masala, stirred into stews or tossed through salads, it’s a great way to bulk up a dish and make it substantial especially in lieu of meat. What I’ve also found is… Read more »

  • CARAMELIZED PEAR AND FETA SALAD

    Pears are surprisingly hard to come by in Chennai. Sure, you find the locally grown green ones—the ‘hill station’ pears—but those still run a certain seasonal cycle and you see them around for maybe one or two months of the year. These local varieties are usually not very flavourful however, and the texture is often… Read more »

  • KALE BUBBLE AND SQUEAK

    I know ‘bubble and squeak’ sounds like a made-up name to sneak veggies into your toddler’s lunch. Unfortunately though—at least for those of us that enjoy quirky food names: oat-thappams, anyone?—it’s pretty straightforward. Bubble and squeak originated in the UK and was a dish of cabbage and fried meat. And the name came about because… Read more »

  • ROASTED BEETS & PUMPKIN WITH CASHEW SOUR CREAM

    I always need to have beets in stock. I don’t know if this mindset came about after the lockdown or what, but I feel reassured knowing that I have a few kilos of them in the fridge. This sentiment doesn’t apply to carrots and potatoes which, realistically speaking are more versatile ‘basic’ vegetables. It’s reserved… Read more »

  • BAKED FIGS WITH PISTACHIOS AND DATES

    I admit this is not the prettiest dish. But aesthetics go completely out the window when you’re stuffing a squidgy brown paste into something. Trust me, I tried. But one bite of this and you’ll realize that its visual appearance completely belies its taste. I’m not a big fan of nuts. I don’t hate them… Read more »

  • ROASTED AUBERGINE WITH HARISSA + WHIPPED PANEER

    At first glance this dish may look and sound intimidating. And that’s exactly why I did the poll asking if you guys wanted it on here. A whopping 97% of you said yes so here we are! This recipe is loosely adapted from Ottolenghi who makes his version with griddled aubergines and feta. As soon… Read more »

  • MANGO GINGER RAITHA

    Mango ginger is one of my favourite seasonal ingredients. Around this time of the year, just before summer sets in, you’ll find them aplenty at grocery stores and in heaped mounds at outdoor markets. At a glance, mango ginger looks a lot like ginger. But once you peel away their soft skins, you’ll find that… Read more »

  • 10-MINUTE THAI CHICKEN WITH HOLY BASIL

    I realize I sound like a broken record every time I say “use thigh meat instead of breast”. That doesn’t stop me from saying it however, so here goes: it’s not because chicken breasts on a good day taste like cardboard, but mainly because chicken thighs are a lot more forgiving for meal-prep and bulk… Read more »

  • OVEN-ROASTED PLANTAINS

    More oven-roasted veg! Plantains this time but I also have an oven-roasted taro on here, and have already tackled the elephant in the room. Basically covering all my bases—and tubers—with this fool-proof method of cooking them. Taro is my personal favourite in this category of starchy veg but they are admittedly fiddly. They need to… Read more »

  • MUSKMELON AND FETA SALAD

    This muskmelon and feta salad might be my favourite salad of all time (a tall claim considering how I feel about a Thai mango salad). As much as I like the more popular watermelon version, there’s just something about muskmelon here that gives it that substantial heft that you don’t seem to get from the… Read more »

  • STOVETOP RATATOUILLE WITH PUMPKIN

    Here’s how I decide what to cook: I shop for things that are fresh in the store/market, and then rack my brain to find different ways to use them up. More prosaic than you might have thought, but that’s the truth of it (or at least most of the time). Sure, I meal plan and… Read more »