Tag Archives: recipes

World Palate Recipes: Nawabi Style Sitaphal Phirni ( Custard Apple and Rice Pudding)


Today I share with you a traditional Nawabi style fruit filled dessert: rice pudding or Phirni.

Rice pudding is one of the basic desserts found in many cultures. Preparation is simple using two easily available ingredients of rice and milk and then sweetening it. Whether its a traditional Danish Christmas meal with risalmande, or a Hindu custom of Annaprasana, of introducing solid food to a baby preparing a rice kheer or the popular Arabic dessert Muhallibiya made from rice flour, milk and dates. The rice pudding plays an important role in many cultures. Here are some more names for the same:Dudh pak, Phirni, Kheer, Bubur Susam, Riz au lait.

Adding fruits to desserts is yet another tradition. Different seasons different geography and cultures, but the house cook has the same task! Gathering, cooking and preserving Nature’s bountiful fruit. From farm to kitchen to table…fruits add nutrition and taste to chutney, sauce, puddings, tarts, jams and kheer.

Custard apple, Sitaphal as it is popularly called, is in season in Hyderabad, India. The then ruling Nawabs of Hyderabad popularised this traditional Phirni adding the seasonal fruit for a delicious twist.

Today, it was a laborious joy of opening the soft, squishy fruit, deseeding it and mashing the pulp to add to Phirni or Kheer. sitaphal-fruit

Sitaphal Phirni (Custard Apple and Rice Pudding)


1 cup full flavoured rice (or any of choice)

1 litre full cream milk (or use a condensed milk can)

2 cups sugar

Sitaphal pulp about 200 gms ( 3-4 fruits)

For garnish: few cashews, pistachio, saffron strands



Soak the rice in 2 cups water for over an hour. Then process to rough grainy consistency in blender, along with water. Put milk to boil in large bottom vessel on low flame ( yes! time consuming, but traditional method in most cultures.) (Or use condensed milk, lightly thinned with water or milk.) Add the grainy rice paste and keep stirring and boiling. (till patience runs out:) and the mixture turns thick.

boiling milk for phirni

boiling milk for phirni


Open the fruit, deseed and keep pulp aside. Lightly mash, keep covered. Prepare cashews and pistachio for garnish, slice them thin. Soak saffron strands in warm milk for few minutes till colour turns bright orange.

Add necessary amount of sugar to the rice-milk pudding, keep stirring. Add fruit, this too lends sweetness! Add half of garnish.

Take vessel off the heat and stir mixture / Phirni well.




Serve warm or chilled, pouring it into desired containers. Use silver cups for regal or festive, baked mud cups for traditional serving. Garnish with remaining fruit pulp and pistachio and saffron.

Happy feasting! Let me know how your friends and family liked this treat.

Sitaphal Phirni

Sitaphal Phirni


I take much enthusiasm and energy to prepare food and capture photos. Please respect and give credit as needed or contact me.

All content and images copyright Veena S. (2013 -2016) http://www.walktomarket.wordpress.com. Please see copyright disclaimer


Festivals(Food): Steamed Modak or Rice Dumplings


Festival Food: Modak or Rice Dumplings

Courtesy: Internet

Come September, the Maharastrian community in India start preparations for their  favourite festival ie. Ganesh Chaturthi. Primarily this elephant-headed God is worshipped as a remover of obstacles and harbinger of benevolent times. He is also known as God of knowledge, the elephant head signifying that wisdom. There are many a story in Hindu mythology on the birth and significance of Ganesha.

Ganesha, is synonomous with food, and loves a plentiful variety, other than just being offered the 3 pronged grass (durva).The sweet coconut filled Modak, made with rice flour is his favourite. Modak is known by other regional names as: modhaka, sugiyan, kadabu, kozhakattai.  The ‘puja’ ceremony or worship concludes with an offering of twenty-one modak.

My friend Swati Leela Vongole is a budding painter and loves to paint object drawings and landscapes or scenery. She does take personal orders, if you wish.

Thankyou Swati for sharing your prized production!  (It sure adds a personal touch and much value to my blog).

Contemporary painting of Lord Ganesh feasting on Modak. (by Swati Leela Vongole)

Contemporary painting of Lord Ganesh feasting on Modak.
(by Swati Leela Vongole)

Whoever said cooking is not an Art? My friend Medha (and her mother) are experts in making the sweet Modak. Here is her step-by-step preparation.

                    To all those celebrating: Happy Ganesh Chaturthi

Photos of preparation:

Preparation of rice flour for Modak

Preparation of rice flour for Modak


Preparation of coconut and jiggery filling

Preparation of coconut and jiggery filling


Preparing the dough ball, rolling in flour

Preparing the dough ball, rolling in flour


Making a soft casing with rice flour

Making a soft casing with rice flour


Filling the stuffing in the casing

Filling the stuffing in the casing

Finally, the Modak take shape: The central filling signifies pure and sweet nature of Atman. The spiral folds and conical head signifies, the convolutions of the material world we live in, and the need to rise above it all, spiritually.

The perfectly shaped, soft and glutinous steamed Modak are now ready for offering.

For stories on elephants and/or Ganesha browse these sites:






World Palate Recipes: Hyderabadi Qubbani Ka Meetha


                Qubbani ka Meetha or Dried Apricot Pudding

This  simple dried fruit dessert, made with abundance of apricots from Central Asia, was given a  ‘shahi’ or royal makeover by the entourage of khansama (cooks) of the Nawabs of Hyderabad.

Hyderabadi or Deccani cuisine evolved during the rule of the Qutb and Asif Jahi rulers of this Deccan city. The food bursts with fullness of flavour, spice, richness of ghee or cream and assorted nuts. The culinary journey reminds us of history, leisure and artistic splendour in both food and architecture.  Hyderabadi cuisine boasts of an amalgamation of imported Turkish and Mughlai cuisines combined with regional Telugu and Marathwada flavours that are full of spice and tangy taste. For a historical narrative on the city market see here.

Qubbani or Kubani is the Urdu word for apricots.  Meetha means sweet in Urdu and Hindi.

Qubbani ka meetha -2

Nowadays this dessert is popularly served at weddings, banquets and Eid celebrations, as Hyderabad has a mix of cultures of both Hindu Telugus and Muslims.


15-20 dried apricots

2 cups water to soak

150 gms. sugar ( 5-8 tbsp.)

1 tsp. lemon juice

Double cream as desired

For garnish: 2-3 almonds, 2 pistachios, apricot kernel/seeds and few saffron strands

Soaked Apricots and other ingredients

Soaked Apricots and other ingredients



Soak the desired number of dried apricots in water in a big bowl, allowing space for them to plump up in size. Leave aside for at least 6-8 hours. Strain them with a sieve or ladle and de-seed them. Place them back into the bowl of water. Keep the kernels aside. Later break them and use the small seeds for garnish. they add a wonderful nutty texture to the pulpy pudding.

soaked apricots (Qubbani)

In another thick pan (traditionally brass or copper) or any other heavy bottom pan place the soaked water . Add the de seeded apricots. Add sugar as desired sweetness.  Bring to boil on very low flame. Add some lemon juice, to prevent crystallization of sugar.

Once apricots are fully cooked, switch off flame. Rest them to cool. Place little pulpy mixture in bowl. Top it with fluffy cream. Garnish with pistachio nuts, apricot kernels and if desired, some saffron milk and strands.

Keep cool on ice cubes or in refrigerator.  Serve hot or cool as desired after a perfect Hyderabadi spicy Biryani and Ghosht curry.

Have you tasted this dish before? What are your views? Do you have a similar recipe. Do share with us.

All content and images copyright Veena S. (2013 -2015) http://www.walktomarket.wordpress.com. Please see copyright disclaimer







World Palate Recipes: Andhra Style Lentil with Yellow Cucumber (Dosakaya Pappu)

World Palate Recipes: Andhra Style Lentil with Yellow Cucumber (Dosakaya Pappu)

Lentils and vegetables make a large portion of a daily nutritious meal for vegetarians. Lentils contain protein and vegetables contain a variety of vitamins and minerals, essential for a healthy body.

Telengana and Andhra food is a blend of South Indian, Mughlai/Muslim, and Deccan cuisines. In coastal Andhra rice and fish are staple ingredients, food is laced with plenty of sesame and coconut and chillies. In central or Deccan cuisine rice and millets are accompanied with meat, eggs, chicken and lentils. Locally grown vegetables like gourds, cucumbers and green leafy amaranth are popular. Liberal use of red chillies, garlic and podi’s or assorted masala powders and tangy tamarind make way into chutneys and spiced lentils or dals.

Have you  ever enjoyed an Andhra Thali meal? Be ready to fill up the plate with mounds of rice accompanied with at least 6-8 side dishes served in katori/cups and generous ladles full of  tangy, lentil based curries- pulusu, sambhar and charu /rasam to go with the rice. For the faint hearted- please down this with plenty of yoghurt or buttermilk.

Andhra Thali meal Courtesy: www.cravebites.com

Andhra Thali meal
Courtesy: http://www.cravebites.com

Our kitchen garden is blooming once again with the Cucurbitacae /Dosakaya or yellow cucumber creeper. Small yellow flowers brighten up the coarse green leaves and tendrils searching for support. We now have 4-5 round raw green dosakaya hanging down the creeper. They will mature into yellowish gold. The skin is thin and inedible. Small, numerous seeds ( at times bitter!) fill the centre. Dosakaya being extremely versatile to cook and have a mild taste makes them popular and easy to cook.

Today I share with you a simple, Andhra lentil curry..or Dosakaya Pappu.  You can replace Dosakaya with either tomatoes or squash to make another lentil curry.


1 cup Tuvar dal /Arhar dal

I medium size Dosakaya or yellow cucumber


For Tempering /Tadka:

2 tablespoons cooking oil

1 tablespoon mustard seeds

pinch of Asaefotida or hing (optional)

1 teaspoon turmeric powder

few curry leaves

1-4 red chillies as desired

salt to taste

a pinch of tamarind (optional /adds a tangy flavour)

2-3 pods of peeled garlic (optional)


Wash and soak the lentil in 1-2 cups water for 10 minutes. Till then prepare the Dosakaya. Peel the skin, de seed and chop into medium pieces. Check! if the cucumber or seeds are bitter..if, they are you have to discard it!

Chopped and peeled Yellow Cucumber ( Dosakaya)

Chopped and peeled Yellow Cucumber ( Dosakaya)

Now in a pressure pan ( I prefer cooking lentils easily this way), add the soaked lentils and chopped Dosakaya. Add another one cup water. Close lid and cook for one whistle. Do NOT over cook, it will make the Dosakaya mushy.

Once cooked, set aside.

Cooked Lentil and cucumber

Cooked Lentil and cucumber

Prepare the tempering or tadka by heating a pan. This is an essential and aromatic part of Indian cooking. So enjoy it!

Add oil, when warm, carefully add mustard seeds to splutter. Add turmeric, curry leaves, hing, red chillies, garlic cloves. Add the lentil mixture to this carefully, as it will bubble while hot. Add salt and juice of little tamarind as desired. Mix gently.

Oil and spices Tempering or Tadka

Oil and spices Tempering or Tadka

For a traditional serving:

Serve heaped ladles of this pappu or lentil on top of steaming hot mound of rice. Garnish with extra chillies and add a dollop of fresh butter or ghee. Mix and slurp away:). Top it up with some fried papads or stuffed dry chillies.

Blessed to eat fresh vegetables grown with much care and love. Ain’t it a spiritual food journey -from the garden to the kitchen…then to the table?

Andhra Sytle Thali meal

Andhra Sytle Thali meal

What’s growing in your garden? Or do you have pots on your balcony? Will you try this recipe ? 

All content and images copyright Veena S. (2013 -2019) http://www.walktomarket.wordpress.com. Please see copyright disclaimer.

World Palate Recipes: Singapore Style Rice Noodles

World Palate Recipes: Singapore Style Rice Noodles

Noodles are to Asian food, as pasta is to Italian cuisine.

China, Vietnam, Korea, Thailand, Singapore, Japan and even Sri Lanka, all have their own authentic versions of noodles and their varied preparing styles. Whether it is a main dish or a soup, noodles are a must at meal times. The three primary ingredients for making noodles are: wheat, rice or buckwheat.

As Asia is the rice bowl, rice is the staple diet here. Thus rice noodles are common. To add flavour and nutrition noodles are tossed with pork, beef, oysters, vegetables, Tofu or mushroom and garlic or spices differing according to the regional cuisines.

Here is a simple Singapore style rice noodle recipe often served popularly at Hawker centres. The HDB market located in Singapore’s housing estates are in proximity to the hawker centres. A great place to savour some authentic local dishes, at competent prices and a guarantee for freshness!

For other Singapore narrative on culture see here.

Rice noodles with Tofu

Rice noodles with Tofu


Rice noodles – about 2 cups after it’s been soaked
2 eggs (optional)
3 cups shredded cabbage (optional)
100 grams Tofu (Soy cheese)
1 carrot
½  a red onion
1 stick of celery or few baby corn
 2 large mushroom of choice
2 dried red chilli peppers
1 tablespoon oil
1 ½ tablespoons curry powder
2 teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon sesame oil
½ tablespoon soy sauce
Pinch of white pepper
     ( Non vegetarians may add – pork, beef or oysters of choice)
Large iron wok and 2 ladles to toss the noodles and vegetables.
Rice noodles and ingredients

Rice noodles and ingredients


As all stir fry recipes demand quick, hot wok cooking, it is best to keep all ingredients handy, all vegetables sliced thin and long ( just like the shape of noodles).

Remove desired quantity of noodles from pack. Place the crisp rice noodles into a large bowl of warm water, enough to cover them fully. Let them rest and fluff for about 10-15 minutes. Drain completely, taking care to gently lift and break the noodles into half-length. This makes it easier to eat 🙂

Now place the iron wok on stove. Heat it for few minutes. Add oil and fry the Tofu and keep aside to drain oil.

In same oil, add onion, chillies and stir fry quick on hot heat. Add all other vegetables and stir fry till crisp( not overcooked!). Toss the rice noodles into this mixture, reduce heat. Add salt, curry powder to taste.

When done, add desired amount of soy sauce. Add Tofu pieces. Toss all together. Prepare omelette of 2 eggs – sunny side up. Cut into long strips.

To serve: Gently toss the prepared noodles into large bowl, garnish with Tofu and vegetables. Top up with sliced omelette pieces. Serve hot. Fancy a beer? Grab a local Chang Beer, just like the locals at the hawker centre.

Rice noodles and little Red packets (Hong Bao)

Rice noodles and little Red packets (Hong Bao)

Ever eaten rice noodles? Where? What were the ingredients?  

Looking forward to some interesting comments. Till then, cook and eat.

All content copyright Veena S. (2013 -2015) http://www.walktomarket.wordpress.com. Please see copyright disclaimer.

Happy New Year 2015

Happy New Year 2015

                   To all my readers, fellow bloggers, FB friends

                                              and family.

 A very Happy New Year 2015. May it be filled with health, joy and love. May hope, faith and wisdom be your pillars of strength to plan your daily actions and thoughts.

Here is a toast to our health! A big ‘Thank you’ to my followers and readers. I await your voices and comments to make 2015 a better blogging year for me.

Health Juice: Green Mint juice and Red Pomegranate juice

Green Mint juice and Red Pomegranate juice

Red, green and gold are the festive colours of the season.These colours are reflected everywhere -in our homes and in malls, packaging of gifts and toys, food or table decor. And Nature adds its compliments too. Red Poinsettia, colourful Gerbera and gold Marigolds create for stunning garden borders. Find out what these colours say:

Red is a warm, positive colour. It exudes movement, energy, and strong emotions. It’s the colour of blood and love. It awakens the sleepy and fills the mind with powerful ideas.

Green is the colour of Earth – balance and harmony in Nature. It embodies fresh growth and renewed friendships and bonds with friends and family. 

Gold is a royal colour! Celebrate life every moment! Gold stands for wealth, elegance, maturity and finesse. It’s also known for spiritual uplifting and enlightenment. Remember gold waistbands worn by Buddhist monks?

                              Gold is the colour of the winner!

             Award a gold medal and celebrate your life everyday!                                  

Begin the New Year with rejuvenating colourful juices.                    

Red Apple Pomegranate Juice

The ruby-red arils (seeds) of Pomegranate are powerful antioxidants and known as a cure-all (diabetes, cholesterol, bowel cleanser, skin treatments and more…) Not only are they full with vitamins but, interesting Greek and Indian stories are woven around them too! Grown in the Middle East and the adjacent regions, pomegranates are used in cosmetic and medicinal uses. Enrich your body with the juice!

Festive juice :Pomegranate

Festivity and Pomegranate juice

Take 1 small cup of red arils (seeds) + 1/2 peeled and sliced red apple. Blend the apple first in a blender/juicer, add pomegranate and blend well again. Pour into glass. Decorate with few ruby-red arils. Serve immediately. (Add ice cubes in summer if you wish).

Green Mint and Green Apple Combo

Mint and green apple juice combo

Mint and green apple juice combo

Green – is the colour of Nature, new leaves and buds, that spring to life. Fresh green sprigs of mint, placed in the kitchen give a refreshing aroma. The rough, curly leaves need to plucked and washed well, then dried upon a towel. You can store them in an air tight box, if not using on same day. For longer storage: Place some on a plate and microwave them for few minutes, till dry and powdery. Crush them finely, let cool . Store. Dry mint can be used liberally on curries, roti and yoghurt drinks. 

Take 1/2 peeled green apple and put in blender. Add a few (8-10) washed mint leaves and 1/2 cup water. Blend again. If you want a punch of zest – add a 1/4 cm. of ginger (or ginger juice). Mix all together.

Take a glass, wet the rim. Dip in rock salt /table salt. Pour the blended juice into glass and stir. (Add ice cubes in summer, if you wish). Serve immediately.

For a touch of Gold – wake up to see the sunrise. Soak up its warmth.

Health juices: Mint and apple combo and pomegranate and apple juice

Health juices: Mint and apple combo and pomegranate and apple juice

Have a healthy, happy year ahead.

How did you begin your New Year ? Do you have any health tips to share? 

Do leave your comments, it makes the blog an interactive place. It gives me joy and inspiration to hear your voices.

A finale: Thanks dear sis, Shubhada, for this timely and apt sketch made for me.

Fruits of love: Drink to health.

Fruits of love: Drink to health.






























This post is in response to this week’s The Daily Post ‘Yellow’

Come winter, seasonal changes affect one’s health and immunity, and the flu and cold bug makes its presence. An ancient, Indian traditional way to fight this is with the use of Turmeric, a yellow powder made from the rhizome of the Ginger plant family. It is locally known as Haldi or Manjal.

The plant’s botanical name Curcuma longa, is found abundantly in India and Asia. The deep colour of the powdered, dried rhizome, not only adds colour and flavour to food, but has immense health benefits. There is hardly an Indian curry or vegetable, cooked without a liberal addition of Turmeric. Yoga abhyaas or study strongly advises using ‘one spoonful of turmeric in cooking everyday’..as it is known for its anti inflammatory and antiseptic properties.


Turmeric powder also known as Haldi or Manjal

Turmeric powder also known as Haldi or Manjal

Chinese, Malay and Indians have long been using Turmeric for its medicinal properties. It is used to treat flatulence, jaundice, menstrual difficulties, bloody urine, toothache and colic. Every Indian and Malay bride will recall their ‘Haldi’ ceremony prior to the wedding, where the bride is anointed with a paste of Turmeric and sandalwood – a traditional way of rejuvenating, cleansing and perfuming the body.

As a young girl, I remember my mother applying Turmeric powder on our bruises and cuts. And come winter, she would boil milk with ginger and turmeric.Ah…can you smell that strong aroma of turmeric as it fills the kitchen?

Recipe for Turmeric Milk:

1 cup milk

1 tbsp. turmeric powder

1 tbsp. ginger powder

1 spoon honey

In a small vessel pour the milk, add turmeric and ginger powder and simmer /boil for few minutes. Remove any scum formed. Pour the milk into cup /glass, add honey as desired.

Sip away to health and beauty!

If the cough or cold persists:

Boil 2 cups of water in a large container, add 2 tbsps. of turmeric to it. Inhale this steam, covering your face and neck with a towel/cloth. Let it reach your open mouth and warm the area. Be careful of the hot water and steam!


Yellow coloured Milk

Yellow coloured Milk

For yellow rice: see here


Pulihoara - Tamarind rice

Pulihoara – Tamarind rice

Here is a light snack, perfect on a rainy day or winter with a cup of Chai. Or invite friends over and offer in individual bowls, peppered with finely chopped onions and garnished with coriander. Crunch…

Puffed Rice Flakes Chivda (Savoury)


2 cups thin white Poha /Rice flakes

2 cups murmura /puffed rice

For seasoning:

1 ladle cooking oil

1 -2 tbsp. Turmeric powder (yellow)

1 tbs. mustard seeds

1 tbs. saunf / fennel seeds (optional)

1/2 cup roasted peanuts (without skin)

1/4 cup roasted Bengal gram

1/4 cup raisins + cashews

2 sprigs of Curry leaves

pinch of Hing /Asafoetida

Salt, chilli powder, Aamchur /dry mango powder and powdered sugar adjusted to taste.

Remember! many of the above ingredients could be optional ( except salt, chilli, oil mustard and turmeric).They add colour, texture and enhance flavour. Experiment as per availability.

Rice flakes Chivda with Turmeric Yellow

Rice flakes Chivda with Turmeric Yellow

Method:    Lightly toss and roast the Rice flakes till crisp. Set aside. Lightly roast the puffed rice. Keep aside in plate.

In a large pan, heat up oil add lightly fry peanuts, cashews, raisins and remove aside to cool. Add mustard to oil till it splutters. Quickly add Turmeric, fennel seeds, curry leaves. Lower flame to minimal.

Add the fried nut mixture. Gradually add the puffed rice and rice flakes, alternatively. Keep tossing entire mixture lightly, till evenly coated in seasoning.

Put pan away from flame onto kitchen top. Add salt, powdered sugar, Aamchur powder, chilli powder as desired. Cool mixture evenly.

Store in airtight jar upto 4-10 days for freshness. Or serve immediately in paper cones (like in street food) or bowls. Garnish with finely chopped onions and coriander and a slice of lime. Enjoy!

Chivda -Savoury with puffed rice

Chivda -Savoury with puffed rice

No Indian recipe is spared from the traditional use of Turmeric. So, buy a packet, check its freshness, store in a bottle away from sunlight. Use some everyday, while cooking or gargling.

Live life healthier with just a spoonful of yellow Turmeric!

For more read:




Recipes with Turmeric Yellow

World Palate Recipes- Sweet Besan Ladoos for Deepavali



World Palate Recipes – Besan Ladoos for Deepavali





It’s that time of the year, once again. The noise of fire crackers fills the air, festive lights or Kandil make a welcome at door entrance, colourful Rangoli designs  are made with rice powder to decorate home entrances and wonderful aromas of sweet preparations waft from the Indian kitchens. It’s the Festival of Lights or ‘Deepavali’ a Hindu festival, full of colour and grandeur. (Dee.p means lamp and Aavali means row).

A time to rejoice light over darkness and Truth over ignorance and good over evil! Happy Deepavali to all.


Traditional Diwali sweets are: Besan Ladoo, Rava Ladoo, Khoya Gujjiya, Chakli, Chirote and a variety of dry fruit sweets. Crispy savouries or Namkeens also grace the festive tables.  Families and friends exchange gifts and sweets. This brings back my childhood memories – my paternal aunt would arrive few days ahead of the festival to help my mother in preparation. The two women would busy themselves in the kitchen for long hours – sharing conversation and recipes and mixing and kneading dough for sweet Ladoo and  savoury Chakli and Chivda. ‘Wait till Diwali day’ my mother used to warn us children, lest we steal some sweets in a haste to relish them fresh!

As i celebrate Deepavali with my family today, this page becomes a tribute to my Aunt and old mother. Here is the recipe of Besan/Gram Flour Ladoo. 


3 cups Besan /Gram flour

1 cup fie Semolina

3 cups powdered sugar

150 gms Cow ghee

100 gms. cashews

50 gms. raisins

1 tsp. cardamom powder

1 tsp. nutmeg powder




Place all the ingredients in a large plate, ready for use. Slice the cashews in half for decoration. Take a heavy bottom pan /large wok, pour 3/4 the ghee in to it to melt on low flame. Add gram flour to it and roast till light brown, stirring continuously and evenly. Add little more ghee, as required. Set aside to cool on plate. Roast the semolina till light brown, add to gram flour mixture.

Add powdered sugar, flavouring powders and raisins to this semi-cooled mixture. Mix /knead lightly.

Take a small part of the mixture into the palm of hand, roll /toss lightly and evenly to form  a ball/ ladoo.Decorate with halved cashew piece. Place on festive plate or in container. Distribute to friends and family after cooling.

Besan Ladoo for Deepavali

Besan Ladoo for Deepavali


World Palate Recipes – ANZAC Biscuits (Australia and New Zealand)


World Palate Recipes – Australia and New Zealand

There is nothing more Australian or Kiwi than the Anzac biscuits (and the Pavlova!). Bite into these delicious, crunchy, chewy oatmeal biscuits with a hint of coconut and you will understand why the women of Australia /New Zealand made them historic. Yes, and they are still baked for charity every year.

Anzac biscuits are associated with the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) established in World War I. ANZAC Day is celebrated on 25th April in both countries. Biscuits were baked and sent by wives of these soldiers, the ingredients chosen so that they would not spoil easily. The biscuits would keep flavour and freshness while being shipped overseas. During the World War 1, the aim of the Army  (ANZAC corps)was to land at Gallipoli and capture Constantinople (now Istanbul). To date, a ceremony takes place at 10:15 am on 25th April, at the War Memorial in Australia and New Zealand.

After the ceremony, families place red poppies besides the Memorial’s Roll. Women still bake Anzac biscuits for charity and distribution on this special day. Here is my friend Debbie and family, from New Zealand sharing their photos. The medal and red poppies are traditionally worn in remembrance. Thanks Debbie!

Famous Anzac biscuits (lovingly called bikkies), can be made using a recipe from Edmond’s Cookery book.

Here is my revised recipe from Australian Woman’s weekly. I reduced the amount of desiccated coconut. I did not have golden syrup so I had to add few extra drops of water, else the oatmeal crumble was a bit dry.

Anzac bikkies – Australian /New Zealand cookies


1 1/2 cup rolled oats (flaky or smooth)

1 cup flour

3/4 cup desiccated coconut (if adding slivered almonds, reduce coconut as desired)

1 cup brown sugar

8 tbsp butter (prefer rich creamy variety)

2 tbsp golden syrup or honey  (optional)

1 tbsp. baking soda

2 tbsp. boiling water (this is essential tip!)


Sift the dry ingredients together, lightly airing them while sifting. Add baking soda to boiling water in a cup, set aside. In a saucepan, melt the butter lightly, (add syrup or honey), gently add the water /soda mixture and see the bubbles rising. Turn off flame, keep stirring and the bubbles will soon settle. This mix will soften the dry oatmeal crumble..so be patient.  

Heat oven to 190 degrees for 10 minutes.

Pour into the oatmeal crumble and blend gently in cake mixer or use wooden spoon if working by hand.

Tip!- As I had not used syrup – I found the mixture very dry, so I added few drops of boiling water.

Line butter paper on oven try or prepare with light grease and dust with flour. Take an ice cream scoop or wooden spoon, scoop out a ball of dough mixture and pat on a tray, leaving wide space between. Bake about 8 -10 small biscuits at one go ( or 5-6 large ones).

Bake for 10- 12 minutes, till edges turn golden brown. Centre remains bit soft. Cool on wire rack. A healthy snack is ready.

Anzac biscuits

Anzac biscuits

Is there a specially dedicated food towards war heroes you know ? Any baking tips on these biscuits you would like to share ?

For another New Zealand recipe click here.


All content and images copyright Veena S. (2013 -2015) http://www.walktomarket.wordpress.com. Please see copyright disclaimer.




World Palate Recipes -Turkish Eggs( Menemen)


Simple, hearty eggs – The Turkish way

Turkey is a food lover’s paradise!

Turkish cuisine is one of the three great cuisines of the world – other two being Chinese and French. The Ottoman Sultan’s chefs, were specially brought to the Istanbul palace from the mountain regions of Bolu. At the Topkapi palace, they devoted themselves to creating an elaborate unrivalled menu! The Ottoman traditions like weaving, agriculture and family business changed the social culture of Turkey. Turkey’s rich and diverse geography produces seasonal fruits, vegetables, olives, wheat, barley, fish, goat’s milk – a treat for the chef.

Geography defines cuisine – fish from the coast of Marmara and Aegean sea, Anatolia is the bread basket, the Balkan mountain goat and sheep give milk and cheese products, fruits in cooler northern regions. A traditional Turkish menu, at home, bus terminal or a luxurious restaurant will include : meatball Kofte, Shawarma, Kebap, roasted aubergine, lentil soup, chicken /mutton biryani, Shakshouka, Mehmet broad beans, banana milkshake, fried Haloumi cheese with olives, Turkish eggs or Menemen. Trays filled with colourful pastries and puddings are dessert menu. 

Now, enjoy it just like the Turks do – families gather together at tables, pass plates and smoke traditional hookah. ‘Laugh and be merry, it helps digest the food’ goes the saying.

Turkey’s famous sweets are: Baklave, slurpy Turkish ice-cream, Pistachio Halve, Tahini Halve, Lokum sugar cake or grain based puddings, sitting pretty in colourful containers on bakery shelves. No meal is complete without a traditional pot of Turkish kahve, or coffee and almond filled dates.

ShubhanAllah! God is kind and merciful.

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Careful! the slippery ice cream may run just miss your fingers.

For more: http://www.foodturkey.com.tr/story-and-culture-of-turkish-food/

Here is my home version of the ever popular Menemen. Served to us on the terrace cafe during a tour of Istanbul, we enjoyed generous Turkish hospitality. Feta cheese, olives, slices of ham and fresh-baked cake are perfect accompaniment. Don’t forget a pot of kahve , Turkish coffee

Scrambled eggs or Menemen (pronounced Meh-ne -men), is a classic Turkish breakfast, influenced by European and Asian cuisines. It is heavily drizzled in olive oil and flavoured with spices. Dollops of fresh goat’s milk yoghurt, black olives and Feta cheese, ham slices are nutritious accompaniment. Seasonal fruit like oranges, apples, plum (Elma )and  apricots (Kayisi) and fleshy figs (Incir) are perfect sweet note to end upon.

Recipe : Turkish scrambled eggs or Menemen


4 eggs

1 piece chopped red bell pepper

1 piece chopped yellow bell pepper

3 tsp. olive oil

1 medium red onion sliced into rings

1 medium tomato

Red chilli flakes ( adjust to taste)

Fresh ground pepper ( 2-3 peppercorns)

Feta cheese 200 gm ( or less)

kosher salt /pepper to taste

Iron wok /skillet is ideal / thick bottom pan

Garnish : Green and black olives, Feta cheese, fresh parsley or mint leaves


Warm up the olive oil in a heavy bottom frying pan. ( Do not over heat oil !) Add the onion and stir till soft brown, add chopped green or red peppers and cook further. Add diced , seasonal tomatoes and simmer for about 5-7 min, or until most of the moisture evaporates. Sprinkle some chilli flakes and ground pepper.

In a bowl, lightly whisk eggs and slowly fold into pan mixture, gently stirring. You don’t want to over cook your Menemen – it will go crumbly, it’s better to have it a bit on runny side. Drizzle plenty of olive oil – it’s good for your skin and health.

Once the eggs are scrambled, crumble white Feta cheese on top.  Take off the heat. Garnish with chopped parsley or fresh mint and few pieces of peppers to decorate further. Menemen must look bright and colourful!

Menemen - Turkish scrambled eggs

Menemen – Turkish scrambled eggs


Here is another recipe I found in the Women’s Era, Indian magazine: http://www.womansera.com/showarticle2.php?id=832

Turkish Vegetables with an Indian twist, by Roma Ghosh

Okra Turkish style
300 gm okra/ bhindi  – medium-sized
salt to taste
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp pepper powder
1 onion – medium sized finely chopped
1 tomato medium-sized cut into small pieces
1 tsp sugar
2 tsp lemon juice
Wash the okra and wipe with a kitchen towel to remove the water. Discard both ends of the okra Wash the okra and wipe with a kitchen towel to remove the water. Discard both ends of the okra but keep the okra whole. Make a slit in the centre and keep aside. Heat the oil in a pan and fry the onion pieces till translucent. Mix in the tomatoes and stir fry for another 2 minutes. Add the okra and cook on medium heat for 5-7 minutes. Lower the heat and mix the remaining ingredients. Cover with a lid and cook till the okra are tender. Remove and serve hot with bread, Feta Cheese and bowl of yoghurt.


All content and images copyright Veena S. (2013 – 2015) http://www.walktomarket.wordpress.com. Please see copyright disclaimer.

World Palate Recipes: New Zealand Carrot Cake(2)


World Palate Recipes – New Zealand (2)

Carrot Cake – An additional recipe from New Zealand.

Recently on my visit there, a dear friend Jennifer quickly busied herself in the kitchen. I followed her to inspect her quick movements  – beating eggs, followed by grating carrots with hand-held grater then sifting the flour and spices. Finally, before serving us dinner, she popped the mix into the oven. Voila! warm aroma of a delicious carrot cake for dessert.

Is this a traditional English or American cake ? When and why did it become popular? What are the basic ingredients ? Or is it a Venetian invention of a popular Jewish recipe, as claimed ? A Polish friend of mine remembers her grandma often made a steamed carrot pudding /cake. So it’s a timeless classic.

In the mid 1990’s with sugar rationing it became expensive. Soon local grown carrots became is good, healthy substitute. Also imported dried fruits were pricier. Carrots probably found their way into puddings, juices and exotic meals. Cake basics are : flour, grated carrot, spice and dried fruit, moistener like yoghurt or oil and healthy eggs. Carrot cake is perfect for a coffee morning or if topped with zesty orange icing – makes for a wonderful birthday cake, suggested my friend.

The Edmonds Cookery Book has been part of every New Zealand home for the past four generations. The first edition published in 1908 by Thomas Edmonds after Edmonds Baking Powder became hugely popular. A 50 page booklet of economical, everyday recipes, this book is often given as wedding present to the new bride. My friend is a big fan of these simple recipes too..

Thanks for sharing your recipe book with us.

recipe carrot cake

And thanks for treating me to a delicious, moist carrot cake served alongside home-grown grapes.

Enjoy and feel free to post your comments and share your recipes.