If you have the pesto ready, this is a dish you can dish out in under 15 mins. Trust me. Ok even with the pesto, it took me about 25 mins. I am super fast! Have been wanting to try out pasta dishes since I attended the Master Class

Pesto can be stored for upto 1 week. Add olive oil on top of the pesto to make it into a covering and store in the refrigerator.

This is the best dish you can cook up within minutes on a cold winter afternoon. Its a great snack and lunch box idea too.


Ingredients For Basil Pesto:
100 gms Italian Basil,
1/2 cup pinenuts,
1/4 cup garlic pods,
1/4 cup olive oil,
2 tbsp grated parmesan,
Salt as per taste

Method:

  1. Wash and clean the basil leaves and allow it to completely dry. 
  2. Put all the ingredients into a blender and churn it into a fine paste.
  3. Adjust salt as required.
  4. If you want to store the pesto, just cover it with enough olive oil and keep it refrigerated for upto 1 week.


Ingredients For Pasta:
2 cups pasta of your choice (Fusilli, Spaghetti, Fettuccini, Penne, or Farfalle)
2-3 tbsp Basil Pesto,  as per taste,
1 tsp chilli flakes,
1-2 tsp olive oil,
Parmesan cheese or cheddar cheese for garnish


Method: 

  1. Take a heavy bottomed vessel and bring about 1 liter of water to a boil. Add 1 tsp of salt to the boiling water. 
  2. Add the pasta of your choice and cook until al dente.
  3. Drain and run though cold water. Toss it with some olive oil and leave it aside.
  4. At the time of serving, mix the basil pesto as per taste to the cooked pasta. 
  5. Adjust the salt.
  6. Garnish with grated cheese, a drizzle of olive oil, and chilli flakes. 


Enjoy :-)
A wise woman who was travelling in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream.The next day she met a traveler who was hungry and the wise woman opened her bag to share the food. The hungry traveler saw the precious stone and asked the woman to give it to him.
She did so without hesitation.

The traveler left rejoicing in his good fortune. He knew the stone was worth enough to keep him security for a lifetime.But a few days days later he came back to return the stone to wise woman.
I have been thinking,he said. I know how valuable this stone is, but I give it back in the hope that you can give me something even more precious.
Give me what you have within you that enabled you to give me this stone.

Sometimes it is not the wealth you have but what is inside you that others need.
being understood, sometimes, could be all that a person wants. people really are not interested in your wealth or have malicious intentions hidden behind their words. people just want a kind soul to hear you out...vent, talk...say things to someone close thinking they would understand. not every word spoken would be right and not everything said would be wrong either. but when you listen to someone open up...and pour out their heart...its also means that they are showing a side of them no one would have ever seen. just that they are too scared to open up to anyone else other than whom they trust the most. not because they dont trust their secrets with anybody else in the world...but because they fear being judged by everybody else.


there are numerous shades of grey in each one of us. just that some of us accept it, some dont. in the portrayal of the good side always, because thats acceptable to the society, we tend to sideline the dark side. but its always there. it just comes out...maybe very rarely....just to a few selective people...

i get calls and emails from friends miles away from me. haven't met a few in years after we left school, college, workplace...reaching out to me in their hour of crisis. usually for situations where its a moral dilemma they are in. they want to vent out to someone close or ask for advise or just to say what they want to say because they feel cared for and understood. its a huge high especially to the dampened spirits to reach out to someone and share your deepest feelings and fears. it does take a toll on me. i will accept that. i dont let my friends know about it. because its not about me at that point. its about the distress they are in and that situation that needs handling. its a thin line. and its a judgement call.

all people ask really is for the person on the other side to understand, care, be non-judgemental and give their unbiased opinion/feedback/advise.......maybe teach something that they dont know.....

trodding on tough paths..... 
sometimes the right thing to do is the hardest thing too. its true. atleast at this stage. some things very close to my heart have not worked out for me..... irrespective of how hard i tried to get it right....it slipped by...  its a numb feeling right now... question marks all around me... what was that, that was??? what is this, that is???

between figuring out the wrong and right, i realize, no one is totally wrong and no one is totally right too.. each one have their own way of looking at things and they are right where they are. fair enough. but when you try to prove a point about what is right and wrong, things do go out of control. because then everybody would be stuck to their point of right and wrong. things should just be. its ok if it looks ugly. maybe thats the way it was meant to be. everything need not be rosy. at the end of the day its about being true to your conscience. if your conscience doesn't allow you to do something wrong, then dont do it. however much people try to tell you to do things otherwise, if doing something hurts someone, which to me is like hurting someone knowingly, its best to not do it. if the best thing to do is the right thing to do, then thats what should be done. temporary gratification is not what is to be looked for. its about the future and in the long term straining relationships which are important is not advisable.

holding that thought together...

this too shall pass....i guess...... 
There once was a little boy who had a bad temper. His father gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his temper, he must hammer a nail into the fence. The first day the boy had driven 37 nails into the fence. Over the next few weeks as he learned to control his anger, the number of nails hammered daily, gradually dwindled down. He discovered it was easier to hold his temper than to drive those nails into the fence.

Finally the day came when the boy didn’t lose his temper at all. He told his father about it and the father suggested that the boy now pull out one nail for each day that he was able to hold his temper. The days passed and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone.

The father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence. He said “you have done well, my son, but look at the holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same. When you say things in anger, they leave a scar just like this one.” You can put a knife in a man and draw it out. It won’t matter how many times you say I’m sorry, the wound is still there. Make sure you control your temper the next time you are tempted to say something you will regret later.
A few weeks back I blogged about the Master Class announcement.

Held on December 7th with a total of 14 participants, this workshop was full of information and surprises. The concepts of Italian cooking were demystified by Chefs. We learnt the concepts of the right way of boiling the pasta to how much sauce should be added to coat the pasta well.

A total of 8 recipes were recreated right in front of us.



The tips and tricks shared during the workshop was very very useful. All the dishes prepared by the chefs were served for us to taste and discuss further on how to add variations to the dish.



Chef's Shahbaaz and Chef Arun were very helpful and gave us a lot of information about the cultural heritage of Italy as well. 



Overall a wonderful learning session, this is a must attend workshop for all who wish to get to know the basics of Italian cooking. 

Stay tuned for the next workshop!!! Its coming soon!!!
This classic coconut chutney, a must in every South Indian household. This is one chutney which goes with any classic South Indian breakfast dishes. Serve it with Dosa, Adai, Idli, Vada, Upma, Pongal, just about anything, and this will do the trick. 

Fast and easy, just throw in the ingredients and its ready in a jiffy.


Ingredients:
1 cup of fresh grated coconut,
3-4 green chillies,
1 inch piece of fresh ginger,
1 tbsp fried gram (chutney dalia),
Salt as per taste

For tempering:
1 tsp oil,
1 tsp mustard seeds,
6-8 curry leaves,
A pinch of asafoetida powder


Method:

  1. Put all the ingredients into the mixer and grind it into a slight coarse to fine wet mixture.
  2. Adjust the salt as per taste.
  3. Remove onto a serving bowl.
  4. In a small tadka pan, heat the oil and mustard seeds. Once it splutters, turn off the heat and add the asafoetida powder and curry leaves.
  5. Pour this tempering onto the chutney and mix well. 


Serve this with Adai, Idli, Upma, Vada alongside sambar.

Enjoy :-) 
As you know my friend & I decided to do a Soups & Salads Event in the month of November. Here is a quick recap of what we could cook and blog inspite of our hectic schedules. I know its not much, but the spirit is in trying to achieve a goal.

This post also consolidates all the soups and salads we have blogged so far in our respective blogs. Thought this would be a nice way to consolidate everything in one place.

Here we go...

Soups:

    

    

    

    


 Salads:


    

      

    

    

    

    

    

    

    

    

   


Oils & Dressings:


    


Click on the pictures to view the recipes. Arundati is a great blogger and super friend of mine, check out what a storm she has been cooking on her blog. Thank you Absa, Roma, Mireille, Eliza, & Aarti for you wonderful contributions to this event. It just made the entire collection so beautiful. Looking forward to your participation to all the future events.