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Showing posts with label home chefs. Show all posts
Showing posts with label home chefs. Show all posts

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Parwal ke Meethey Paan

Just a few days back, my Instagram account (@swetabiswal) crossed the 1K mark . Nothing great about the numbers when compared to successful Instagrammers yet it is a personal milestone which i felt like celebrating. And going by the Indian way, we celebrate special occasions with something sweet . "Kuch meetha ho jaye" is what we say.Around the same time, I was running out of ideas to use up a big batch of 'parwal' that had arrived from Odisha. After exhausting all the savory dishes, I decided to make something sweet of out this summer vegetable.

Parwal ka meetha is a kind of sweet made from pointed gourd. Very popular in the Northern parts of India, it is something delightful and different. But not as daringly different as I like. When it comes to experimental cooking, I love to break all the rules. Hence, a further twist to this already different recipe.

Combining the desserts and meetha paan into one, the 'Parwal ke meethey paan' is not just a complete dessert in itself but so refreshingly different. Plus it is easy to prepare and stays good for almost a week. Tastes best when served chilled so make sure to prepare a big batch in advance before inviting guests to your home.

Read on for the recipe -

Preparation Time - 30 mins

Ingredients -
  • 10-12 Parwal/Potolo/Pointed Gourd
For stuffing -
  • 100 gm mawa
  • 1/2 cup mixed dry fruits 
  • 3 tsp gulkand 
  • 2 tsp mukhwas
  • 2-3 tsp tutti-frutti
For the syrup -
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3-4 betel leaves
  • few drops of edible green color
For final garnishing -
  • 2 tsp mukhwas
  • silver foil (optional)

Preparation - Peel the pointed gourd and make a slit along the length. Remove the pith.

Boil water in a saucepan. Once it gets to a full boil, dunk the pointed gourd and let it boil for 3 mins.

Around the same time, prepare the betel flavored sugar syrup. Take 3/4 cup water, 1 cup sugar, 4 betel leaves and the edible food color in a saucepan. Stir on a medium flame it the sugar is dissolved and the syrup thickens.

Strain the pointed gourd and add it to the flavored sugar syrup. Let it boil till soft. 

Remove from flame, strain the syrup and let the vegetables cool down. 

Put a non-stick pan on the burner. Add the crumbled mawa and keep stirring it constantly till it gets a brown hue.

Remove and mix in the rest of the ingredients (mentioned under stuffing).

Stuff a spoonful or so of the mixture into the parwal and garnish with mukhwas and/or silver foil.

Put in the fridge for an hour or two.

Serve chilled .

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Like Minds Eat/Share Together @ Plattershare (Plattershare Feedback Campaign)

When you have been blogging for a close to a decade, nothing surprises you any longer. Bloggers come and go, some reach new heights while other switch to new avenues. Somewhere in the last 2-3 years, I have been closely monitoring the emergence of many recipe sharing platforms or recipe aggregators as one calls them. And having been a part of quite a few of them, I know that they are doing really well and helping people pursue their passion for cooking/food.

But working with Plattershare has proved to be something else ! Well I can say that because I have had the opportunity to interact with Kirti Yadav (one of the two founders) more than a few times. Take passion and cross it with vision. That's a deadly cocktail one would say. But I can safely say that it sounds more like her. From spotting food trends to cherry picking cooking talent for Plattershare, she does it all with a smile. God knows how she manages it with a kid ( I know that from my personal interactions with her which make really me feel like a team member ). She is a great inspiration and I loved the way she kept motivating and driving me as worked on a story for Black rice and it's recipes.

The best thing that attracts me to Plattershare has got to be the 'Food stories' because at times just a picture of a recipe is just not enough ! One likes to read a bit of history or something more that stimulate the grey cells. The second thing is the neatly structured recipes that come with a rating. Like all good cookbooks, they mention the preparation/cooking time and servings. A definite boon when planning for a party or gathering.

And finally, it has to be the overall structure of the website that reminds me of my favorite social media platform. One can just post a pic, add a recipe or when feeling more inspired, go for a full length story. And that kind of variety makes the browsing part rather interesting !

Does something so good needs to be bettered ? Well, when necessity fuels invention, one might build the refrigerator but when ambition fuels inventions one ends up with dreamy stuff like an ice-cream sundae !! So, why not !

The first thing that comes to my mind is related to regional cuisine. A basic search feature that allows one to search recipes by region/state/country may sound elementary but it is really useful for people who are new to cooking to want to explore recipes by region.

The second useful feature that I can think of is to have a separate tag/section for 'signature recipes', recipes that are exclusively developed by a particular chef/blogger. The biggest irritant that I have faced during my blogging days is that of plagiarism. And I sincerely hope that Plattershare does something about it !

Being on Plattershare has been a wonderful experience in every way.

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