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Archive for the month “October, 2008”

My Almost No Knead Rye Bread Experiment

If you’ve read my blog you know that I am a foodie. And I love to bake too! Its getting chilly here in New England so that only means one thing for me. Bread baking begins! I make a lot of soups in winter and bread is a must to go with it.

I recently subscribed to Cooks Illustrated online and came across their almost no-knead bread method. Sounded foolproof, so I got to work. Apparently NY Times published a recipe for no-knead bread a year ago and it was a craze everywhere. So Cooks came out with their own version adding a little bit of beer to give it that distinctive sourdough flavor. This and many other almost-no-knead bread recipe versions can be found at They even have videos!

I started it last night and it just finished baking this morning and I had to take a picture. I can’t believe how pretty it looks! Renee if you are reading this, you HAVE to try it.

Happy Diwali!

Festival of Lights – That’s what Diwali is. It stands for victory of good over evil, return of hope, forgiveness, health and prosperity and a new beginning. Each year on Diwali we cook up a traditional Indian meal, light the Diyas (little earthern lamps with wick and oil), do the Pooja (prayer) and write our yearly diary. That’s the fun part of having your own family. You set your own traditions. Writing a family diary is not a traditional thing but my father always did so I started doing it after I got married. It’s the most fun part (other than eating of course!, did I say that we are confirmed foodies!) of the day. In the dairy we write names of family and friends who attended the pooja this year, any major events which happened in the past year, any new addition to the family (Sadly we haven’t been able to write about a baby for a while 😦 ). We then read the pages from all the past years and reflect upon them.

We have a small family consisting of Gagan and I, his brother and his wife and his youngest brother. For me it means the world to be able to celebrate it with them! Everyone is trying to get off work a little early so we can be together.

I miss my parents a lot on this day but I am a firm believer in making the best of every situation and enjoy my time with my family here!

Karva Chauth – My Day of Fasting for LOVE!

So today is the North Indian festival of Karva Chauth. On this day all married women fast the whole day and pray for their husband’s good health. This may sound cruel to you but it’s actually fun because fasting is only just a part of it. It’s also a day when women get together, put henna on their palms, get dressed in finest of their saris, wear jewelry and basically the works! It’s a girls night out or in.. just without food or water 🙂

When did this custom start? I don’t know thousands of years ago… Here’s how the legend goes. My grandmother tells this story on each karva chauth day and I thought I’d share it with you all.

The story of Karva Chauth

There was this young bride who had 7 brothers who loved her very much. Traditionally the first Karva Chauth after marriage is celebrated at the mother’s house so she was with her brothers and her folks at their house on the day of Karva Chauth. Now the fast is broken at Moon rise. Towards the end of the day when the brothers saw their sister was thirsty and hungry they tried to coax her into eating something. But the girl was determined. She wouldn’t break the fast. So the brothers thought of something. They created a “fake moon” by burning some fire behind a white sheet and called her sister and said “Look look the moon is out!” . Poor sister, was easy fooled and she did her prayers and broke the fast but the minute she had her first bite she gets a message from her in-laws house. Her husband just had an accident! She burst into tears and the brothers realized what they had done. They apologized to the sister but she was a mess! She went to everyone to help her and tell her what she could do. Prayed for days and one day a woman comes to her house and says to her. “I am the goddess of Karva Chauth and I am very pleased with your devotion. Your husband will recover in no time and from this day onwards all married women who keep this fast with devotion will have a long and happy married life”. So there you have it.. Karva Chauth…

Now lets get to the fun stuff. So yes, here in the US, my sister in law and I get dressed in our saris when we are back from work, wear makeup, bangles and everything. Keeps us distracted from the growling stomachs. We ask our husbands to pick up lots of good Indian food from our favorite restaurant so that when we see the moon, we can just jump right in. And when the moon comes up we look at the moon first through a sieve and then look at our husbands through the sieve. It’s very romantic! The husbands then give us water with their own hands and together we eat. It’s kinda cool.

What is not so cool is cloudy nights when we can’t see the moon! Today however seems like a really nice day so we’re hoping it’ll be early dinner for us 🙂 It’s 4:50 PM and I am doing really good. The trick is in keeping yourself busy.. really busy.

Fun stuff!

Diwali is only 10 days away!!!!

I will post some photos tomorrow.


Here are some photos. This one’s with my Sister in law (in pink) and her Mother.

The MOON! Finally!!!

Moon Viewing and Worship

Hubby Viewing!

SIL and I

10 Items or Less – My List

Gagan and I recently saw this delightful movie 10 Items or Less. The whole movie is a big conversation between Paz Vega (Gorgeous!!!) and Morgan Freeman. I am yet to see a movie which had Morgan Freeman and did not ROCK! Seriously I LOVE ALL HIS MOVIES!

Anyway, so back to the movie…. Just to give you a little background, Paz Vega (remember the housekeeper in Spanglish!) is a checkout girl at a supermarket who mostly manages the “10 items or less lane”…

My favorite part of the movie is when Vega and Freeman are in the car and she asks him, if you had to choose what would be your “10 items or less” in LIFE!

So here are mine. I am not including people in my list simply because I can’t imagine my life without anyone who is currently in it. Here are my top 10 THINGS!

1. My Laptop
2. Blackberry
3. Sewing Machine
4. My Le Creuset Pot
5. My Recipe Books
6. My Pressure Cooker
7. Jalapenos!
8. Milk
9. My Contact Lenses/Glasses (kinda impossible to see without them) 😉
10. and last but the most important of all – PatternReview!

So if you are reading this, what would be your “10 items or less list?”

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