Tag Archives: homemaker

Celebrating Ganesha’s Arrival with Art

Ganesha Chaturthi is around the corner. The festival of welcoming the elephant God home is celebrated in most parts of India and is especially popular among the people residing on the west coast of the Indian subcontinent.

It is a 10 day long festival, during which Lord Ganesha, the God of wisdom and prosperity, is welcomed to various households. After worshipping his idols for these 10 days, starting with Ganesha Chaturthi, the idols are immersed in water bodies, symbolic that the elephant God fills the house with happiness and prosperity, and takes away all the negativity with Him, only to come back the next year, with the same fervour and the same purpose.

As the air is imbued with the excitement around Ganapati celebrations, the media is already abuzz with articles related to the festival, the best pandal (Read: temporary shrine) in town, the best place to get modaks (Ganesha’s favourite sweet) to offer to Lord Ganesha, the new eco-friendly Ganesha statue, the best Ganesha sand art, Ganapati Goodies, and the list is endless.

While some people around the world find different ways to impress the Lord of Good beginnings and others try to take business advantage from the current buzz around Ganapati celebrations, I express my love and devotion to my favourite Lord through this simple, yet close to my heart painting.

GaneshaPainting.jpg.png

Being an ardent deity of Ganapati, His painting was the first that I made when I picked the paintbrush after years (may be only after the school art classes). This painting is extremely special to me and beautifies one of the walls of the Pooja (Read Prayer) room of my house.

Hope you like this!

Dessert Desires: Mango Fudge

What to do when you have some ripening mangoes. I decided to try something new this time and started to look out for a recipe. I crossed my fingers that hopefully my search leads me to a recipe that goes straight into my recipe book as one of the all time favourites.

Also, while trying out a new recipe, Mom’s instructions on how to be careful with food and how not to waste food keep doing rounds in my mind. These instructions are very valid and I make sure to take them really seriously. I don’t know why I mention this amid the excitement of trying to cook something new, but probably the jitters of a new dessert making experiment and the thought that I might fail at it, lead me to keep revising this in my mind. 🙂

Okay, so I finally found and successfully made a dessert out of the over ripe mangoes. This actually turned out to be an extremely easy and interesting Indian sweet, the Mango Fudge (Read: Aam ka Kalakand).

Mango Kalakand 1.png

Mango Fudge Set for Cutting into Desired Shape After Cooling

Time to confess, I am a big fan of Kalakands and milk cakes. And for me to have made some myself, with complete justice done to those ripening mangoes was like icing on the cake.

Mango Kalakand 2.png

Aam ka Kalakand aka Mango Fudge

Here’s the recipe if you wish to try making this as well.

Ingredients:

  • 1 ltr Milk
  • 2 Cups Mango Pulp (without threads, so prefer to sieve the pulp before adding to the milk)
  • 2 tbsps of Yoghurt
  • 1 Cup Sugar (Alter quantity as per taste)
  • ½ tsp Cardamon Powder
  • Some Saffron Strands

For setting:

  • Lightly greased deep plate/aluminium tin

For Garnish:

  • Roasted/Unroasted Nuts (Almonds/Cashew/Pistachios)

Method:

  • Boil milk in a thick based pan
  • Add mango pulp and yoghurt
  • Keep stirring gently and allow the milk to curdle
  • Continue to stir and allow the liquid to evaporate and to avoid sticking at the base
  • Once the liquid evaporates, add sugar and mix gently to allow the sugar to melt
  • After the sugar has melted completely, you can see the dessert starts looking granular
  • Add the cardamom powder and saffron strands for flavour
  • Allow the mix to cool and transfer it in a slightly deep plate or tin
  • Garnish with nuts. I used almonds
  • Refrigerate for 30 minutes to allow the fudge to set completely
  • Once set, cut the fudge into the desired shapes and serve

Handy Tips:

  • If the milk doesn’t curdle even after adding the mentioned quantity of curd and mango, add 2 tbsp more of curd to facilitate curdling
  • The step of making the liquid after curdling to evaporate completely takes the maximum amount of time (about 30-40 minutes), so be patient 🙂
  • The granular look of the thickened milk after adding sugar is exactly what is desired for that perfect kalakand, ready to be taken off flame and set to cool

The sweet-tangy taste of the mango and the chewiness of the fudge makes it a drool worthy sweet/dessert.

Do try making this for your loved ones!

Hi, I am Rose

I am Rose.png

Meet ‘Rose’….

‘Rose’ here is a woman and her love for family and dear ones….

Beautiful, tender and fragrant; pure, unbiased and selfless ….

The layers of the velvety petals are symbolic of the depth of her seemingly never ending love….

The love that withers when the petals of hope, support and acknowledgement begin to fall off….

But this love ends only with the very existence of ‘Rose’.

Hope you like it.

Art and Emotions in One Frame

A few days back, when I was busy completing yet another craft project, my mom came up to me and stretched out her hand to give me something and said, ‘Can you make something for this?’ On realizing what she was handing over to me, my eyes welled up with tears. It was mom and dad’s first photograph after marriage.

They had kept it preserved since 1965 and gleefully narrated the day they had gone to get the picture clicked at a famous studio in Connaught Place, Delhi (India). A few days after their wedding mom and dad went to get their first professionally clicked photograph as a couple. On that day, dad adorned his favorite black suit and mom wore a pretty orange sari, along with her wedding jewelry. I love this photograph of mom and dad and till date we tell mom that they made for the most charming couple we have ever seen.

After we had refurnished the house some years back, the photograph had been taken off the photo frame and kept safely in a plastic wrap to make space for new show pieces and other family photos.

Ever since we lost dad a few years back, mom had very rarely mentioned to us about dad and how much she missed her life partner. That day when mom handed me the photograph felt as if she was asking me to help her revive and relive her long forgotten moments and feel dad’s presence in her life.

I could not have let go of a chance to get some positive vibes to mom’s life and especially when she was the one keen on that. That’s when I decided to make a photo frame for the picture, rather than purchasing one.

Some online tutorials and my creativity helped me create a lovely cardboard photo frame to fit my favorite photograph. I added to its beauty by using quilling art and some Fevicryl Golden Glitter Glue to decorate it.

PhotoFrame.png

I was the most satisfied when the best feedback for the picture frame came from mom when she said, ‘tune to char chand laga diye humari photo par’ (An idiom used in Hindi to tell that a thing looks prettier that before).

The Photo in its frame sits beautifully on a showcase in the living room of my house and usually gets an appreciative notice from the guests.

PhotoFramewithpic.png

Hope you like this.

First 500 Likes!

Screenshot_2016-07-18-17-50-29-1

Its just been a little under two months when I published my first post on ‘A Homemaker’s World’ and I proudly mention the first 500 likes on my blog.

Thank you all for appreciating and encouraging me with your compliments every time I post on the blog.

This means a lot to me and will definitely take my zest for writing more interesting posts and articles one step ahead.

Hugs!!

Finding Art and Beauty in Home and Kitchen Chores

This post may appear to be a bit weird and rather funny to some, but I love being weird at times. Don’t you think it’s always a good idea to see beauty in everything?

The title reminds me of two of my previous photography posts called ‘Water Droplets Captured My Way’ and ‘Melting Ice’, which also befit the art and beauty in home and kitchen category. Though these captures had made me think and write about life and its deeper meanings, the following photographs make me laugh at my own sense of photography and admiring beauty.

These photographs will make it clear of what my idea of instinctive photography is and how my craving for seeking beauty even within the confines of my home makes me the person I am. Weird for some and beautiful for others! I guess each one of has that child in us, some people just keep that weirdo, that child, up and awake in their hearts. 😉

The first photograph is of a bottle gourd that I started chopping, but forgot amidst focusing on some other work. On returning after some 15-20 minutes I saw water droplets appear at the periphery of the cut bottle gourd. It looked so appealing to my eyes that I couldn’t help but photograph it against the backdrop of sunlight shining through the window. The resulting capture looked so beautiful to me that I wished to share it with all of you. 🙂

Bottlegourd

The second photograph proves that I can be an absolute manic when it comes to being imaginative and creating patterns out of nothing. Below is a pattern that got created while I was scouring the griddle with a dish washing powder. :p The design looked similar to a peacock’s feathers when opened completely (absolutely my imagination). I was intrigued by the formation, liked it and clicked it.

Griddle art

The only words that come to my mind after writing this post are ‘always keep your childlike nature alive, it keeps you going during the toughest of times and most humdrum of tasks.’ I have kept the child in me alive and I am absolutely proud of it.

Hope you like this.

When You Don’t Wish to Bake, Try this Biscuit Cake!

There are so many times when the whole process of baking a cake can feel so lengthy and tedious. Even when some guests are coming over lunch or dinner at a short notice, we are usually on the lookout for desserts that are quick to make and scrumptious at the same time.

So if you wish to make an easy, quick, delectable, chocolaty cake, without getting into the hassle of baking, do try the super easy biscuit cake.

When I tried this for the first time, it took me just 10 minutes to make the cake mix. After setting it in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, the biscuit cake was ready to be served.

I would personally recommend this to all chocolate cake lovers. My family swoons over the idea of having a biscuit cake, especially on a summer afternoon when a cold and chocolaty dessert feels like heaven on earth.

20160705_145402

Yummy, Gooey and Chocolaty No Bake Biscuit Cake

Do try making it for your family and friends as well. It’s so easy, even your kids can make this no bake cake. Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder/2-3 cubes of chocolate
  • 2 tbsp of vegetable oil/2 cubes of butter
  • 2 packets of Marie biscuits/Cracker biscuits
  • 3-4 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Essence
  • Dry fruits (roasted/non-roasted)

For setting the cake:

  • Cling Wrap
  • Tray/Aluminium Container (can be used alternately as cake setting bases)

Method:

  • Put oil/butter, vanilla essence and sugar in a bowl and mix well
  • Heat the milk slightly and add chocolate. Allow the chocolate to melt in case using chocolate cubes
  • Pour the milk and chocolate mix over the oil/butter, vanilla essence and sugar mixture. Mix well
  • Add crushed biscuits and keep turning the mixture so that all the mixture gets absorbed by the biscuits
  • Keep adding biscuits until you get a thick mixture
  • Add the dry fruits to the mix. I used roasted cashews, almonds and pistachios
  • Now place a cling wrap on the kitchen counter and transfer the cake mix on it
  • Wrap in a shape you wish to set the cake in (round, square or oval)
  • After wrapping in the cling film I place the cake in a 5” round cake container to get the perfect round cake shape
    • You can even directly place the cling wrapped cake on a tray
  • Set in the refrigerator for 1.5 to 2 hrs

Tip: Some people love the crispiness of the biscuits in the cake, while some do not. For those who love the crispiness, 2 hrs setting time is enough. For those who like their cake all soft and gooey, refrigerate the cake overnight, the biscuits will absorb more moisture and become softer.

Hope you will try making and enjoy having this no bake cake. 🙂