Sunday, June 29, 2014

A bit of happiness

The happiness is where your home is. After a long day when you just want to escape in the place where you can just relax your body and mind. I also tried, rather still trying to create such an escape in my home. What I'm doing is just trying to decorate every corner of my home one by one. As I love to decorate with my own creation (which also saves a lots of money :) ), so, it is taking a lots of time to do. Anyway, not all the things here are created by me. Some of the collectibles I've bought, which I wanted to buy for a long time,like the doll.Some of them are gift. The black flower was made by one of my friends. However, I couldn't find that anywhere. Surprisingly, when I went to Vegas, I saw that in a shop , and it was not very expensive. I couldn't resist me to buy that. It was in my mind for long time that I would put three different sized candle stands. When I found  I didn't buy, because I didn't want spend money. However, few days later, when I told about my wish, my husband encouraged me to buy them . So, I went back to Ross, but the same pieces I saw there, were no more. Anyway, I improvised with these three pieces.



This tree stand I also found in Ross, and it so enchanting, I couldn't resist it to buy.  Actually it is a indoor plant stand. However, I didn't want to keep any live indoor plant. If you ask me why? I can give you any satisfactory answer. From the beginning I wanted to keep some artificial plant.  I took lots of time to buy them. Actually any time I could all beautiful ones from Michales, or Jo Ann or from any craft store. I didn't buy them. First I tried to keep something else, but nothing looked good on it. Then One day I went to Michales, just to check. Luckily I got some of them in a high discount. At last, my plant stand is looking good. 


Sunday, June 22, 2014

Chicken stuffed potato fritters

The other day both my husband and I were craving for something spicy, and lip smacking snacks. However neither there was any ready-to-eat food  available in my kitchen, nor I had anything which I could cook.  We were watching TV, but I was thinking what I could cook for afternoon snacks. I was just staring to the TV, and I saw one advertisement of ready-to-eat “Aloo tikki”. “Aloo tikki” is a very popular Indian snacks made of potato with vegetable stuffing. At that very moment I decided to make Aloo tikki, but I had no such vegetables in fridge to make the stuffing. Moreover, my strictly non-vegetarian husband doesn’t like any vegetable stuffing. Though I decided to make Aloo tikki, I had no idea what to put inside the tikki. I opened my refrigerator, and stood with a blank mind for few moments. Then I started looking one after another bowl of cooked food, in search of stuffing. Then I found the exact stuffing what  I was looking for, the ground turkey curry. Yes, in the morning I cooked the ground turkey, just to have in dinner with roti. The ground turkey served as an awesome stuffing. 
Here is the recipe:


4 medium sized potato
Salt to taste
Oil spray or one tbsp. of oil
For stuffing: (Here I’m giving the recipe of stuffing of 1 lb. of turkey, as I cooked that. You can adjust the measurement according to the amount of ground chicken or ground turkey. I think you need one and a half cup of ground chicken)
1lb of ground turkey
One cup chopped vegetable ( carrot, corn,beans, and green peas. You can use one cup frozen chopped vegetables or you can cut fresh vegetables)
One small onion
One tbsp. ginger paste
One tsp. garlic paste
Half tsp. of coriander powder
One tsp. of cumin powder
Half tsp. of garam mashala powder (you can get any Indian grocery store)
Pinch of turmeric powder
Salt to taste
Two tbsp. of oil
The stuffing:
Wash throughly the ground chicken,and put it on a large strainer to drain the excess water. Take a big bowl. Mix ground chicken, salt, ginger paste, and garlic paste in the bowl. Keep it for half an hour. Finely chop the onion. If you are using fresh vegetable, finely chop carrot , and beans. Heat oil in a heavy bottomed wok in medium heat. Add chopped onion, and chopped vegetables into the oil. Stir occasionally until the onion becomes soft. Add the chicken and stir for few minutes. Cover the wok, and let it cook. After 5 minutes add all the powdered spices, and pinch of salt. Thoroughly mix the spices with chicken with the help of a spatula. Cover the wok and let the chicken cook . After sometime check the chicken whether fully cooked or not. If the chicken is fully cooked, then increase the heat to dry the curry. Stir continuously to avoid scorching at the bottom. Once the stuffing is done, keep it aside and let it cool down. Meanwhile cut the potatoes into halves. 
Take a sauce pan, and pour  water into it to cover the potato halves. Boil the potatoes until soft. Let it cool down. Peel the potatoes, and smash using your hand. Add a pinch of salt and make smooth dough. Divide the dough into small golf sized balls. Poke in the middle of the balls. Then by the side of the hole just press the balls to give a shape of a bowl. Put small amount of the stuffing into it and close it. Slightly press down to give the shape of the tikkis. Take a frying pan, and spray oil all over the pan. Arrange the tikkis on the pan , And put the frying on medium heat just to roast the both sides of the tikkis. If you want to do the same thing in oven, then take a oven proof pan. cover the pan with an aluminum foil. Spray oil all over it. Arrange the tikkis on it and bake until two sides are slightly brown.
Serve the tikkis with spiced tea or coffee.



Friday, June 20, 2014

Spring in my garden

I always love gardening. I think this interest has come into me from my mother. In my childhood I used to help my mother in her garden. When we first moved in our family home back in 80s, we had a nice place to garden. I’ll tell the story of my mother’s garden later. Anyway, I always want a garden in my own home. Though during our stay in apartment I usually planted flowers in pots, but those were not satisfying  to me. My wish fulfilled when we moved to our new home one year back. Last year we moved to our present home during spring time.  So, I didn’t have much time to plant all the annuals in my garden. This year I could satisfy myself by planting many annuals in my garden. Still my garden not in a good shape. 

We have plan to revamp our front yard and backyard. Currently, both of us designing for that. Here I’m sharing some of the pictures from my garden.

 

Here I've planted petunia, pansy,viola,vinca, celosia, ranunculus, alyssum,lobelia, cosmos, marigold,  stock, and more

 
Verbena, dianthus, and more
Daisy
Lobelia

Impatiens

Monday, June 16, 2014

Mixed media canvas

One day I went to Ross and found a packet of small canvases. Without thinking I bought the pack. However after buying that, I didn't know what to do with them. I tried to paint, but I failed in that. I kept the canvases for a long time. I usually watch Youtube videos on different kinds of art, especially which I can recreate. There I learned about mixed media art. Here are pictures of the mixed media canvases I created. Some of the ideas I got from there, and some of the ideas were mine. I would love to thank all those artists who shared their idea on youtube, and from where I got the ideas.