Koi Lautade Mere Beete Hue Din…

…at least the 10 days that have gone by, rather swished by!

How wonderful it would be if you could go back in time and relive the beautiful days you spent with your family, all over again!

– The days spent lazing around carefree, with either a book in your hand or simply watching your daughter run around with absolutely no worry to run after her because you knew there already were three people who were more preferred to do the honour!

– The days spent watching your daughter climb up the shelves of her grandparents’ wardrobes, like a monkey and flick li’l things from there and sneak them into your bag. And then hearing her tell them how badly those things were needed in ‘her house’ instead making you reminisce about the time when you used to do the same 🙂

– The days spent stuffing yourself with the umpteenth serving of gajar-halwa made ‘lip-smacking-iciously’ by your ma and still craving for more.

– The days spent waiting for the tikki/golgappe-wala to come to your block and then rushing out to book your place with other residents, when he did come tom-tomming on his large frying pan with a spatula. And then devouring and relishing every bite and sipping the spicy jaljeera thereafter….oooooohhhhh!

– The days spent hopping from one shop to another splurging away and realizing in the process that no joy matched up to the joy of shopping with your mother :).

– The days spent rediscovering your city through lanes and by-lanes in a cycle-rickshaw with your daughter perching herself amazingly well right at the backseat and your heart skipping a beat every time the rickshaw-puller maneuvered through a jam-packed traffic and finally letting out a relieving sigh when he got you to your destination successfully.

– The days spent rushing up to the terrace as soon as the sun came out, with a pack of moongfalis and a book and your daughter following right after with her homework-sheet.

– The days spent grinding your teeth in the biting cold and yet loving every bit of the chill and breathing in every bit of Dilli ki sardi! Brrrrrrrr!!

How I wish I could have those days back! But as it turns out, its back to the grrrrind!

Anyway, how have you all been? Hope you all had a rocking start to the year.

Life’s little joys…mean the world sometimes

Sometimes life’s little joys bring the widest, purest of smiles, give you moments that you want to cherish forever.

Yesterday, while on our way back from the pool, Namnam had wanted to hear a song which for some reason I was unable to play in the car. So I suggested we took the CD home and played it there. No sooner had I played the song, than Namnam started shaking her hips. Seeing her excitement, I couldnt stop myself and joined her in shaking a leg or two. And in no time the two of us were dancing away to glory!

Now, I’m an absolute non-dancer. It will not be wrong to say that I have two left feet when it comes to dancing. I’ve never felt very comfortable while dancing. So much so that I get very conscious of my surroundings when I’m asked to dance.Forget about surroundings, parties or gatherings, I cant get myself to dancing even when I’m alone :D.

But yesterday, I just didn’t care two hoots about the world. Not that the world was watching me, but I didnt even care about my own inhibitions. I was probably putting even Sunny Deol to shame. But who cared! All I noticed was how happy Namnam was when I was dancing with her, how much it meant to her. All I cared about ware those smiles that lit up her face when she had me & R join her on the ‘dance floor’. Oh yes, R joined us too, a while later. And the three of us found the perfect way to close our 5 day loooong weekend!

Thats how little it takes sometimes, isnt it, to make one realize how some moments, howsoever small they seem, can bring so much of happiness? In our rush to catch up with our lives, many a times we forget to live these small, but precious moments to the fullest, dont you think?

Anyway here’s the song that had the three of us dance our heart out!

Onam aashamsakal!

Tomorrow is Onam.A festival of great significance to Malayalis.A festival that symbolizes fervour &enthusiasm.A festival about dancing,feasting,merry-making.A festival that signifies happiness,prosperity &togetherness.A festival I look forward to celebrating every year.

Onam,like I have mentioned in my earlier post,falls in Chingam,the first month of the Malayalam calendar.More information about the festival is available here
If you have read my earlier mentioned post,you would also have read about the virtual ona sadya that many of us offered to serve you all today.

A sadya comprises of Rice, Sambhar, Erisseri, Kalan, Olan, Aviyal, Thoran, Koottukari, Pachadi, Inji-puli, Pickles, Upperi/chips & Payasam(dessert).And it is particularly lip-smacking when devoured in a banana-leaf! I’m sharing recipes of two dishes here,which I’ll surely be making tomorrow.For the rest of the recipes ,do visit my mother’s page,‘AMBROSIA’.

SAMBHAR

Ingredients:
a)Vegetables(Drumstick,Ladies Finger,Brinjals cleaned&sliced into long pieces) – 1 cup
b)Sambhar Dal(Red Gram Dal) – 1 cup
c)Turmeric powder – 1 teaspoon
d)Tamarind juice – 3 tablespoons
e)Coriander Powder – 1 tablespoon
f)Grated Coconut – 2 tablespoons
g)Fenugreek seeds -1 teaspoon
h)Asafoetida powder – 1 tea spoon
i)Mustard Seeds – 1/2 tea spoon
j)Whole Red chillies – 3-4 for masala and 2-3 for seasoning
k)Curry Leaves – 2-3 sprigs
l)Salt -2 teaspoons/as per taste
m)Vegetale oil – 1tablespoon for the masala and 2 teaspoon for seasoning

Sambhar made @ Deeps' on Onam(02-09-2009)
Sambhar made @ Deeps' on Onam(02-09-2009)

Method:
1. Wash the dal.
2. Pressure cook it with 3cups of water,turmeric powder & salt,till tender.
3. Boil & cook separately all the vegetables except ladies-finger

4. For masala,
* heat oil in a frying pan.
* splutter fenugreek seeds
* add red chillies&coriander powder
* when turned brown,add grated coconut and fry till the raw smell is replaced by an aroma.
* add asafoetida powder,sauté for a few seconds and turn off the heat.
* once the mix cools down,grind it to a smooth paste.

5. Add the vegetables(including ladies finger) to the dal and bring it to a boil.
6. Add the tamarind juice and stir all the mix together
7. Now add the ground paste and keep boiling for another minute.
8. Turn off the heat.

9. For seasoning
* heat oil in a pan
* splutter mustard seeds
* add red chillies & curry leaves
* saute for a second

10.Season it onto the curry.

The Sambhar is ready to be served!

ERISSERI with Pumpkin

Ingredients:
a)Ripe Pumpkin(cut into cubes) – 1cup
b)Turmeric powder – 1/2 teaspoon
c)Grated coconut – 1 cup
d)Cumin seeds – 1/2 teaspoon
e)Chilli powder – 1/2 teaspoon
f)Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon
g)Whole red chillies – 3-4
h)Curry leaves – 2-3 sprigs
i)Coconut Oil – 2 tablespoons for the paste and 2teaspoons for seasoning
j)Salt – 2teaspoons/as per taste

Erisseri made @ Deeps' on Onam(02-09-2009)
Erisseri made @ Deeps' on Onam(02-09-2009)

Method:
1. Cook pumpkin after adding just about enough water(the water-level should be at par with the pumpkin),with turmeric powder & salt

2. For the paste
* Heat oil in a pan
* Splutter cumin seeds
*Add grated coconut & chilli powder
* Fry till brown.
* Once the mix cools down,grind it to a smooth paste.

3. Add the paste to the vegetable and boil and mix well.

4. For seasoning
* Heat oil in a pan
* Splutter mustard seeds
* Add red chillies & curry leaves
* Add a few coconut-scrapes
* Saute for a second

5. Season it over the Erisseri and serve!

This is how an authentic Ona-sadya** looks like
Onam Sadya in Vazhayila

Hope you enjoyed the spread(especially you,Hitchy! 🙂 )

And yes,if and when any of you post recipes on the occasion of Ona-sadya,please do let me know so that I can hop by and book a place for my share and drool!

On that note,to all my fellow Malayalis “എന്റെ ഹൃദയം നിറഞ്ഞ ഓണം ആശംസകള്‍”!
And to others,here’s wishing  a very happy & prosperous Onam 🙂

PS: **Image courtesy Google Images

EDITED TO ADD:Thank you once again for the loving wishes and making this day even more special.I’m sorry I’ve not had the time to visit many of you.I intend to make it up by resuming my blog-hopping soon 🙂
We had a wonderful Onam today.I made Erisseri and Sambhar proof of which I’ve uploaded above 😀 ! Namnam & I had the perfect company in our good friends,another mom-daughter duo,J & O to decorate a pookalam.Here are two images of our creation 🙂

Pookalam
Pookalam
Happy Onam :)
Happy Onam 🙂