Mango Vanilla Shots

These little ones are mangoey delights. I have recently started doing this ‘desi’ custard using rice flour to thicken the milk and there are so many ways to play with it!
Mango Vanilla Shots
All you need it a litre of milk ( I use cow milk) and 2 tablespoons of rice flour,
Bring the milk to boil and keep boiling on a low flame for ten odd minutes. Mix rice flour with half a cup of milk to make a smooth slurry paste. Add to the boiling milk and stir non-stop till it thickens and is cooked, say another ten mins.

Add brown sugar/ white sugar/organic sugar as per taste.

I added generous amounts of saffron to it and some fresh Alphonso mango to get this mango custard.
Mango Custard
Yesterday, I added a few dropped of vanilla extract and chopped mangoes to make these cute Mango vanilla shots.

I kept some without sugar and added some palm date jaggery and froze it as kulfi. More yumminess 😀
Nolen Gurer Kulfi

Seeds and Sprouts Trail

This is so perfect for that 4 PM craving or the 11 AM hunger pangs! Chock-a-block with proteins and nutrition, it keeps you feeling full for hours.
Seeds and Sprouts Trail

Half a cup of mixed sprouts
1 Tablespoon each of pumpkin seeds, melon seeds (roasted cashews, almonds, coconut chips)
3 Tbsp roasted chana

Mix and enjoy!

Dahi Idli

This is so good on the palate in the hot summer! A power packed way to begin the day
Dahi Idli
You need
A cupful fresh curd
2-3 idlis
1 tsp mustard seeds (Rai)
1/2 tsp oil
2-3 curry leaves
2 tsp chana daal

Make sure the curd is fresh and sweet, else strain and add some milk and a tsp of powdered sugar.
Dip the idlis in. Heat oil and add mustard seeds, curry leaves and chana daal, Spread on the curd soaked idlis and enjoy! 

Sprouts Filled Dosa

I was looking for ways to make sprouts more interesting, so coarse-ground a cupful of them and added to a cupful of dosa batter.
It translated into two beautifully textured and super yum dosas.
Sprouts Filled Dosa
A sprinkle of molgapodi and breakfast sorted
So basically that’s all to this recipe.
One cup idli batter
One cup coarse ground mixed sprouts ( I used moong, moth and chana)
Hint of salt

Mix well. Spread on non-stick pan, Make dosas. Sprinkle gun powder/ molgapodi and enjoy!
These will be thicker than regular dosas but so beautifully textured and yum that you just won’t notice 😀

My Fitness Journey

Today marks a new beginning in my food blogging journey. I was on a sort of hiatus, unintentional really. Work and life took over, what with my new venture Jaipuriya and kids growing up too fast, too soon etc etc.

For the past two years I have started to look at food differently. I enjoy it as much, but now I have started to incorporate things I had never thought of before. The last two years have been life altering for me.

Here is an account of that  journey. From 92 kilos to 62 kilos. This is what I looked like in March 2015, and in fact most part of my life.

Garima Sarolia Narera Before

I’ve been overweight for as long as I can remember. Through my school and college years I was sometimes kindly referred to as ‘pleasantly plump and cute’ and at other times blatantly made fun of.

Just before I turned 30, I decided to shed and was able to lose 18 kilos in three months with 3 hours of exercise daily and very restrictive meals. But it all came back within a few months because both the exercise schedule and the diet plan weren’t doable.
In June 2015, my doctor told me to loose 20 kilos if I wanted to keep disease at bay.
This opened my eyes nice and wide and I started my brisk walk (2 kilometres to start with) and small meal schedule.
Today 22 months down the line, at 44, I am 30 kilos lighter. I walk at least 10000 steps daily, practice 30 mins of yoga every day and eat sensible clean meals ( 6 or 7 a day)
I eat everything but in moderation. No cheat days. Any day that I feel like a dessert, I have a small serve.
I eat every 3 to four hours. And make sure to eat nothing 2 hours before bed time. I make sure I drink 12 glasses of water daily and get 71/2 hours of sound sleep.
I am now at my ideal weight but need toning. Will go about it slowly.
For me, that’s been the key- going slow and steady 😀

As for dietary changes, I eat fresh and simple vegetarian food. I don’t drink and smoke and strictly avoid eating out more than once a week. My typical day looks like this
12 glasses of water spaced through the days, 2 as soon as I wake.
5.45 : a banana before the morning walk
8 AM : coconut water
10AM : breakfast (milk with muesli/ oats/poha/ sandwich/ idli/dosa/I even had a gond ka laddoo all winter )
12: one orange or Apple (any fruit)
2 PM : lunch (2 chapatis, daal or curry, curd and some salad) I make rajma, chole, paneer at least once a week
5 PM : sprouts/ handful peanuts/cashews/almonds or a small cheese sandwich
7PM: dinner (similar to lunch or soup and toast or idli sambar)
9PM: a cup of warm milk (and a whole wheat biscuit only if feeling hungry)
10PM-5.30 AM: 71/2 hours of sleep

This is what I look like now. Far from perfect but I am happy with how energetic I feel!

Garima Sarolia Narera After 5
Recently got featured in Times of India for the weight loss, It was surreal 😀

I indulge in:
Whatever I fancy, be it a slice of cake/a small scoop of ice cream or a freshly made pathishapta (a popular Bengali sweet), but strictly in moderation. Then I make sure I burn it off!

My workout: I walk 10000 steps a day, practice yoga after my walk, dance three days a week and strength train three days a week. Also, I make sure I remain active throughout the day. I leave my chair every 30 minutes in the middle of long working hours and take a little walk. Walking was all I did for the first 12 months and I lost gradually, only 2 kilos in the first six months. Then the pace picked up. After 18 months when I was around 72 kilos, I started yoga. When I got under 70, I started jogging (which I always thought was impossible for me!)

Low-calorie recipes I swear by: I cook all my food in 2 tbsp oil (for a family of four). Fried food is something I try and steer clear of. I eat everything but in moderation. There are days when I crave for dessert, I have a small serving.
I eat every three to four hours and try not to eat anything 2 hours before bed time. I make sure I drink 12 glasses of water daily and get 7 1/2 hours of sound sleep.

Fitness secrets I unveiled: Consistency is the key. There are no secrets, no shortcuts. One needs to keep at it. The more you make your body work, the fitter it gets. I started with a 2 Km walk which used to take me 30 minutes to complete. I slowly picked pace and worked it up to 10 Kms. Now, I happily jog, even sprint and participate in a high energy dance class. And enjoy all of it!

How do I stay motivated?
 Weight loss is the biggest motivation for weight loss I say! It’s one thing that keeps me inspired. And of course being able to shop in regular shopping sections rather than plus zones is a great push in the right direction. Also I keep varying my routine, do fun stuff like dancing to break the boredom.

Lessons learnt from weight loss: Weight loss is not something one can take up and leave. ‘Going on a diet’ is the biggest misconception. Fitness is a lifestyle change one needs to make, for good. Clean eating and staying active is vital. I am now at my ideal weight but need toning. Will go about it slowly. For me, that’s been the key- going slow and steady.

Stay happy Stay fit!
I will share a lot of healthy clean recipes hereon! Desserts too, yeah. They are never far away ❤

Welcome to Jaipuriya!

The story of Jaipuriya began in Jaipur….

Somewhere in the pages of my growing up years, the hand-block prints of Jaipur got deeply imprinted on my psyche. I fell totally and helplessly in love. The love affair continues till date!

It found expression in the form of a new creative venture- Jaipuriya.com, my baby number two after CaféGarima!

IMG_0587

Jaipuriya, in the colloquial, applies to someone or something that is quintessentially from Jaipur. I am a ‘pukka Jaipuriya’ and when I was thinking of what to name the new start-up the name popped in my mind and stayed. Nothing could make it go away. And then for the logo- the hue had to be blue. My favourite colour and the most loved hue in the block print story- Indigo! The tree of life, to me, signifies creation as a constant and became the basis of the logo.

Jaipuriya Logo

So we launched in April with some basic simple silhouettes. We mostly had straight and A-line Kurtas in hand-block printed Indigoes, Kalamkaris and some soft pastel hues. We also had some goodies designed in sensuous rustling rayon. There were round necks and mandarin collars. We were totally overwhelmed by the response we got! These were instant sell-outs!  Thanks to all the lovely people ❤
IMG_6610
So the designing process at Jaipuriya begins with the selection of the designs we want to get printed. Yeah! We get our own fabric printed, fun, ain’t it! But then that’s the fun of belonging to Jaipur. One knows every nook and cranny (well almost!).
And then the sampling and designing happens.  Pamposh Sarolia, our Creative Head  (Ma, to me) has a deep aesthetic sense and an inherent sense of style, backed with ten solid years of running a leather and apparel studio of her own. I pulled her out of work hibernation and she designs all the traditional wear. The Indo-Westerns are mostly designed by yours truly.

What can be better than the fact that work is fun and takes you to beautiful hidden alleys to gorgeous treasures? I have to say I love my work!

A beautiful lady summed it up saying

कोई कह दे उनसे जाकर,
कि जयपुरिया के कुर्ते पहनकर
छत पे ना जाया करे..🌙
शहर में बेवजह,
ईद की तारीख बदल जाती है..!!
Best Compliment Ever! ❤

Check it all out at Jaipuriya.com!

 

Jaipuriya: A new beginning,my new baby as CaféGarima turns 2!!

CaféGarima is two!!
Happy birthday little one ❤ It has been a beautiful journey of learning, growth and many new friendships I’ll cherish lifelong . We have a brand new look and a swanky shiny new logo!

Huge thanks to Pri and Souvik of Giggling Creations for creating this beauty.. It defines CaféGarima. Thanks my dears! Love you both.

IMG_6612.JPG

It is also an apt occasion to introduce you to my baby number two- Jaipuriya.com!

Somewhere in the pages of my growing up years, the hand-block prints of Jaipur got deeply imprinted on my psyche. I fell totally and helplessly in love. The love affair continues till date! It found expression in the form of a new creative venture, my very own ‘Jaipuriya’.
IMG_0587

Jaipuriya, in the colloquial, applies to someone or something that is quintessentially from Jaipur. I am a ‘pukka Jaipuriya’ and when I was thinking of what to name the new start-up the name popped in my mind and stayed. Nothing could make it go away. And then for the logo- the hue had to be blue. My favourite colour and the most loved hue in the block print story- Indigo! The tree of life, to me, signifies creation as a constant and became the basis of the logo.

Jaipuriya Logo.png

So we launched in April with some basic simple silhouettes. We mostly had straight and A-line Kurtas in hand-block printed Indigoes, Kalamkaris and some soft pastel hues. We also had some goodies designed in sensuous rustling rayon. There were round necks and mandarin collars. We were totally overwhelmed by the response we got! These were instant sell-outs!  Thanks to all the lovely people ❤
IMG_6610.JPG

So the designing process at Jaipuriya begins with the selection of the designs we want to get printed. Yeah! We get our own fabric printed, fun, ain’t it! But then that’s the fun of belonging to Jaipur. One knows every nook and cranny (well almost!).

 

And then the sampling and designing happens.  Pamposh Sarolia, our Creative Head  (Ma, to me) has a deep aesthetic sense and an inherent sense of style, backed with ten solid years of running a leather and apparel studio of her own. I pulled her out of work hibernation and she designs all the traditional wear. The Indo-Westerns are mostly designed by yours truly.

What can be better than the fact that work is fun and takes you to beautiful hidden alleys to gorgeous treasures? I have to say I love my work!

 

Til ki Barfi- Makar Sakranti Special

Til ki Barfi  .jpg
Celebrate Makar Sakranti with these Til ki Barfi, which are real easy to make and so well suited to the occasion. They just need khoya,sesame seeds (til) and sugar. That’s it! Some stirring together and done 😀 Could it get any easier!

You need
600 grams khoya ( I made mine at home. Find the recipe here)
200 grams white til/ sesame seeds
120 grams powdered sugar
A handful of roasted almonds to garnish, chopped coarse

Dry roast the til for 3-4 minutes till it begins to change colour. Do not over-roast or burn else it will become bitter. Cool and grind coarse in the mixer.


In a heavy bottomed pan roast the khoya for 4-5 minutes. Add the til and sugar and mix over medium heat till the sugar is melted and the mixture comes together. This takes another 4-5 minutes.
Spread the mixture in a thaali or square baking dish. Even out the surface with a spatula. Spread the chopped almonds and press them gently into the barfi with  the spatula. Even out the surface again. Let set for two hours and cut into pieces of desired shape and size.
Til ki Barfi stays good for up to two weeks.

Happy Makar Sakranti!

Love
Garima
Tik Mawa ki barfi .jpg

Make Khoya/Maawa at home

OBQN4897.jpg
Make khoya/maawa at home in fifteen minutes with three simple ingredients.  And it comes out so yum that I always fear half of it will vanish before making it to the Mithai 😛

This recipe yields about 600 grams of maawa
(Recipe adapted from here)
2 cups of milk powder
1 ¼  cup cream ( I used Malai)
3 Tbsp butter ( I used Amul)

In a heavy bottomed non-stick pan melt the butter and add the cream. Stir over low heat till the mixture beings to bubble gently. Add the milk powder in five lots stirring after each addition to avoid clumping. Cook stirring over medium heat till the maawa comes together. The whole process takes fifteen minutes. The maawa is ready to be used in barfi at this stage.
To make gulab jamuns cook the maawa further till it thickens a little more.
Maawa can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

 

Restaurant-style Cream of Tomato Soup

Restaurant Style Tomato Soup .jpg
Winter and soups go hand in hand. My favourite is a bowl of thick tomato soup. And this recipe gives restaurant-style Cream of Tomato in three simple steps, with no butter or oil. It gets all its flavour from a little cream. I mostly scoop some fresh ‘malai’ off milk, whisk and use it.

This recipe makes four generous servings (I froze some of the leftover and it kept very well. I can now just heat and enjoy home-made soup any time!)

1 kilo/ 15 medium sized very red salad tomatoes (they should not be the sour variety)
250 grams/ 3 large onions
1 tsp salt
½ tsp ground pepper
1 tsp sugar
3-4 cups of water as needed to cook the soup
¼ cup cream or fresh malai and some more to garnish
Some finely chopped fresh coriander or parsley to garnish

Chop the tomatoes and onions into large cubes in a large pressure cooker or lidded pan, add salt, pepper, sugar and 2 cups of water. Bring the cooker to a whistle and turn off. Let cool and open the lid. If using a pan, let cook covered for 12-15 minutes.

Strain and save the liquid in a heavy bottomed pan. Puree the tomato and onion mix leftover and strain again. You get a thick, creamy tomato soup.

Add a cup of water to it (or more as per the consistency desired), check the seasonings and adjust them. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil over medium heat. Add ¼ cup of cream and finely chopped fresh coriander and mix well.


Serve hot garnished with more cream and coriander and bread croutons. I toast mine very crisp instead of frying. This makes for a very healthy, delicious and fulfilling meal.
Happy Winters!

Love
Garima
Cream of Toamto Soup .JPG