Well ,it was around May or June 2005 when we discovered cold stone!! It became an instant hit in our house .
We were in the US for about 8 months for my husband's official long trip! Ah I miss those days, coz those days have a lot of memories attached.
This was when I for the first time in my life saw snow....it looked soooo beautiful, just like a white sheet spread all over the city...
This was when the joy of my life came to this world...my Samy baby!(although this joy has now become a non stop chatter box, that gives headache sometimes..just kiddin)
Anyways, so our weekends were mostly trips to devon, which looked just like india,,,..Since I was a novice cook that time,and my husband being a total foodie(believe me,poor him)my husband had to make do with my food during the week...as there is no other way out for halal food, but during the weekend, my husband used to research for the halal hotels around chicago... and every weekend we used try out new hotels.. some turned out to be good which towards the end of our trip we frequented, some were disasters....
So on a weekend on a trip to a restaurant,I dont remember the place..it starts with E...it had a university...it was connected to skokie road...anyways..some place in Illinois, was one of a visit, where the food we had, was good ,but, our taste buds refused to tingle!!..As was destined that cold stone ice cream had to be in my fav list ,our car was parked right in front of cold stone!!
My husband headed straight to the creamery, I followed him sheepily.....wow...I dont know why that time I was in love with coffee...I used have lots of coffee...maybe thats why samy doesn't sleep a lot,so I ordered coffee lovers only and my husband ordered a pecan ice cream...he tries on different tastes..but I am loyal to my coffe lovers only:)
So this is when my love for cold stone ice cream started, it was fun watching how those guys.. dig out the cream... put the bars,nuts, and stuff.. and mix it up on a COLD STONE ...and make a yummy ice cream, so after that there was no looking back, I searched for the nearest cold stone to my house, which was in buffalo grove,but that too was not so close, but that place had a loyal customer "me":)
I was heartbroken when I was leaving US! will I ever be able to eat this ice cream again?
Then life moved on........................my husband shifted base from India to Dubai,....life was going on..and on.. and on..and on
And one fine day(Thursday to be precise,its like friday in other countries..start of weekend).........my husband called me..and said...there is a good news for you! get ready...I have a surprise for you.
He took me to a mall(Dubai festival city)...we reached the waterfront..where huge show was going on...with people going around holding cups of ice creams.....wait a minute....I think I have seen this ...COLD STONE?
Yippeeeeee cold stone has a branch in dubai...........yahooooooooooooooooooo
boy oh boy the first day of cold stone in dubai,they were giving away all the ice cream for free........I had2 cups.... ohhh dont blame me... if I had known about it earlier I would have fasted all day for it....
anyways...then yesterday, my husband took me there again for yesterday was Thursday,weekend starts...and also happened to coincide with the valentines day
!!!(for all the islamic polices out there,please note we did not celebrate valentines day ,rather, it coincided with our family celebrations)
again I had coffee lovers only!!
phewww.......what a story man....!
Thursday, February 14, 2008
By weekend I mean Friday & Saturday, coz here in Dubai this is the weekend!Of late, I am a bit bored with the routine of biryani on each coming Friday, so I decided to make something different this week to get outta the chain of biryani Friday, So I was determined to try out some new or for that matter some old recipe, so I started searching on net for a recipe ,that has the ingredients which I have in my fridge!
So after about 15 minutes of search,with a background shrieking of my daughters,I ended up with the recipe of dum ka kheema, that I used to eat ,growing up, I never bothered to learn that then, I don't know why? I wish I had learnt, coz mom made the best, I only knew how it tasted, never attempted to learn how to create that taste,I regret not learning,So coming back to the dum ka kheema, it was close to what mummy used to make,but I guess i need to put a little more tadka,.it tastes well with chapatis...mainly parathas or naans go well with this recipe.
So far, I have read in so many blogs about William Sonoma...everybody is raving about William Sonoma cookbooks, all those ravings are tempting me to buy one, but I guess I will wait one more year till my younger one is little older, so that its a bit easier for me in the kitchen, otherwise its a pain running to and fro the kitchen every time she shrieks, it takes 1 hour for a job that could be done in 15 minutes to get done!
But I have a little watchman, guarding the baby, my older one Samy, every time Huddu does something,immediately I get the report via...shouting "Mummy Huddu ko dekho,corner me aagai girjaati...Mummy jaldi aao, Huddu girjaati", she shouts this continuously till I come for her lil sister's rescue... :-)
So its kinda out of question reading from books and then cooking,and running around checking on kids, and then not knowing the end results of what is being cooked....no...this is not the right time for that for me I guess, so tried and tested works well for me than trial and error.....new recipes but aproved from someone.
Anyways again coming back to the kheema,here are the ingredients
--onion 2 medium finely sliced
--ginger garlic paste 2 tbsp
--chilly powder 1.5 tsp
--haldi 1/8 tsp
--yogurt 1 cup
--garam masala 1 tsp
--2 small pieces of charcoal(non chemical)
-->Mix kheeema,ginger garlic paste,garam masala, chilly powder,haldi, yogurt,salt...mix it well and let it marinate for about an hour or two
--> Deep fry the onions till they turn golden brown, then drain and spread the fried onions on a paper towel, so that it gets crisp.
-->now using hand, crush the crisp fried onion, Heat oil in heavy bottom pan.
--> Alongside,put the charcoal over medium flame, wait until the coal is fully red and is covered by white ash.
-->when the oil is hot,put the marinated kheema and the crushed onion,and fry it really well(bhoono).
-->Then make a well in the center and place a piece of aluminum foil in the well.
-->Place the burned coal over it and put 2-3 drops of oil on it. Cover it at once with a tight fitting lid and put aside for 20-25 minutes.(this is called charcoal ka tadka)
P.S----The kheema that you are using should be very fine.
Serve with hot naan,paratha...anything your choice!!!!
well if you have any leftover, which I don't think you will have, then you can make it the filling of samosa if you don't wanna have it again as it is...here in Dubai we get samosa strips,...so in my next post I will show you how I made the samosas... along with the khatti mithi chutney..made from tamarind and dates.
till then adieu
Sunday, February 3, 2008
Reading the blogs, that is what I had been doing last couple of weeks, , I really appreciate the people who are blogging about all the recipes, tips,time optimization. So,I thought of blogging, myself, first it started with great interest ,but slowly the interest is dwindling away, because I am not a very good cook! Not very adventurous cooker,better cook what people have already cooked and liked,otherwise if it doesn't turn out good, all the hard work goes in drain! Anyways food na sahi, kuch gupshup hojaaye!!
Now that my husband is on a visit to another country for office work, me and my daughters Sam and Hud are here alone,I dont feel much like cooking for me alone .
Playing with kids thats what I will do, and cook easy peesy things like khichdi, stir fried vegetables, .or just order a couple of shawarmas for dinner, that is what is the main advantage of living in Dubai, I don't need to cook a lot!
Sam will be 3 years old next month, and Hud is 7 months old.
Sometimes it gets frustrating ,when my hands are full and I dont get to do what I want to, what can I possibly do when I am frustrated, take my vent out on my innocent babies, let me better explain to you by an example,.
For many days I wanted to make a dessert called tiramisu, it does not involve much work but a step by step procedure,but then whenever I try to make it either of my kids seek my attention,when I try to ignore ,they cry...I just give up my cooking and get back to the kids,lil bit frustrated coz I cannot do what I want to, and then scold my older daughter, then a guilty feeling creeps in...I shouldn't have scolded her, I am her mother, friend,teacher..everything ,she should be my priority,but in the frustration reasoning doesn't work!this comes only after I have scolded her!
But when the realization dawns on me, I draw her close, give her a nice tight hug, and you know what it cheers her up!
I am really lucky to have a baby like her, when I was expecting Hud,I was really afraid how Sam would take up, when the love and affection that only she was getting is now going to be shared ,but I must say she was only 2 yrs 4 mnths old, but really mature(samajhdar), she loved and kissed her baby sister so gently,and that too without anybody telling her, never did she hit her in these seven months.
Still I remember,the day Hud was born,my husband had left for office , me and Sam were at home as usual, my contractions had started from early morning, but I thought those were minor braxton hicks, but later it develoed to strong pain, I was calling my husband he was on his way home, I could not take the pain and I started crying, my lil darling came up to me and said
"mummy dukh raha hai?cream lagaaun? aap ro nahi, mei aapko mera teddy bear deti hun" then she was running to her toy basket and getting me all her toys to comfort me..........Oh that day I thought God has blessed me truely......
Then I got a gift on my 24th birthday..guess what? A Baby :)
Yes Hud was born on my birthday, she was so quite and non fussy baby unlike her sister,who used to cry a lot, but this silence was only for 3 months, now that she is 7 months old mashallah, she is in full form of mischief, trying to crawl all over the house,and while on her cruise on knees,picking up and eating watever she fancies on the floor, so now my main job is to keep all the teeny weeny stuff awat from her reach, things like pistachio shells, tiny coins... gotta be really careful, this is the most difficult phase, coz I gotta keep an eye all the time, 2 mins eyes off her she fell off the bed:(
Anyways just wanted to share the joy of being a mother.....There are ups and downs.... happiness and frustration.
But, their cute lil smile and their love, will make my joy win over the frustration.