Nutella Sandwich: Nutella spread on Iggy’s bread

Pics of Nutella on Iggy's Bread by Arun Shanbhag
My favorite way to start the day is with two slices of whole wheat sourdough bread from Iggy’s with a liberal spread of Nutella. The bread is hearty and powers me through a crazy morning at the office, or a sadistically long run; the creamy hazelnut chocolate spread, I savor every smear of. This had so completely worked into my running routine, that when I travelled out of town for marathons, I carried my Nutella jar. Continue reading “Nutella Sandwich: Nutella spread on Iggy’s bread”

Iggy’s Bread: A Photo Essay

Iggy's Bread, Boston; © Arun Shanbhag
Iggy’s Bread IS my favorite bakery in town. Their breads and bread rolls are hearty and made of simple ingredients with no chemicals or preservatives (see comparison at end). My daily staple is their Whole wheat sourdough round, which goes well with Nutella, or even Trader Joe’s crunchy salty peanut butter and fruit preserves. They also serve home made sandwiches and unique pizza creations, … and it is a beautiful store fronting their bakery. Continue reading “Iggy’s Bread: A Photo Essay”

DuddaLi: Arrowroot Pudding

Indian Dessert Arrowroot Pudding

Arrowroot powder is the starch component of the perennial tuber, marantha, found in tropical forests. Starch from these tubers is believed to be of a higher quality compared to potato starch or corn starch, as it has a neutral taste when used in cooking. Continue reading “DuddaLi: Arrowroot Pudding”

Almond Pista Milk


Last year on my return from the Kailash Manasarovar yatra, I had a severe case of acid reflux which was affecting my throat and vocal chords. Apparently, eating foods cooked in an unknown quality of oils and lying in sleeping bags (without pillow) can cause this. Of course, my intense running also brings up stomach acid and aggravates it. In addition to medications and other dietary changes, my doctor recommended that I stop drinking coffee! I could not imagine starting my day without a double shot of espresso. But I loved running more. So for several months I drank green tea in the mornings (and yawned at my desk). I came upon Masala Milk Mix in the grocery store and loved its refreshing taste. My mother noted that it was easy to make the powder at home and that got me started on grinding my own Badam Pista Milk Mix.

Now, I start my day with a warm cup of Badam Pista Dudh. I still drink about half a cup of coffee after lunch. My acidity problems have been essentially resolved and I feel great.

Easy to make.
Continue reading “Almond Pista Milk”

Dill Idlis: A Konkani Delicacy

During this summer, we had parents, siblings and their families visiting. In addition to catching up on gossip, we were constantly eating various dishes that the women conjured up.

And they made one of my favorites, Dill Idlis (Dill is called Shaepi in Konkani). These idlis represent the marriage of the South Indian staple idli with the aromatic Dill, popular in coastal Maharashtra. Dill Idlis are primarily made along the northern coastal Karnataka (Konkan).

In making these idlis, the key is to retain the subtle taste and gentle aroma of dill, which is later complemented by warm tuup and honey while eating. So here is the brief recipe and a few pics.

Fresh Dill
Pics of Making Dill Idlis - steamed rice cakes by Arun Shanbhag
Continue reading “Dill Idlis: A Konkani Delicacy”

Good Bread is Good for You

pics of fresh breads in a bakery in Vienna Austria by Arun Shanbhag
Display of breads in a tiny bakery in Vienna – steps from our friend's house. The bakery carried a large variety of multi-grain breads and everything was “organic.” The front counter displayed an assortment of dessert rolls, croissants, tarts, pastries and other savories. We'd nibble on an almond- or walnut-filled croissant and sip their superlative melange (espresso with hot milk!). Soon this became a routine. What’s not to love! Continue reading “Good Bread is Good for You”

Idli Sambar: Its whats for brunch!

Idli Sambar: Its whats for brunch!

Of late, I was craving idlis. First it was Lakshmi, who tormented us with her pati's excellent idli making skills. Then at the Konkani Sammelan we had idli sambar for breakfast, and I only got one serving! Considering the long lines, I felt guilty and did not go for seconds. *Yes sad!*

But the ever-vigilant M dearest noticed my silent suffering. She soaked the dal for two days, ground it, fermented if for a day and on Saturday morning made delicious idlis. She even made the perfect sambar, just the way I liked it – from scratch and by blending all the spices. And with lots of eggplant, peppers and potatoes. I like the gritty feed. No powders were used in the preparation of this sambar!

And yes! I went for seconds, … and thirds!

Breakfast in Montreal

Chez Cora Dejeuners Montreal Canada pics by Arun Shanbhag
I get cranky without a good breakfast. Particularly when traveling. I do more research on breakfast places, than on sightseeing. So it was with Montreal. On our first morning, we walked over to Chez Cora Dejeuners (1425 Rue Stanley, off Rue Ste Catherine). I had read a lot about it and was ready to be disappointed. When we came up the street, seeing customers lining outside was a good sign. After about a 30 minute wait, we got a nice table with sunlight streaming in from large windows. We ordered random things from the menu. An omelet wrapped in a crepe for M (see next pic), and a waffle on a bed of fruits for me (see above). This place is known for its generous fruit servings and all their breakfasts are accompanied with lots of fruit. Yes, it was del-i-cious! Fueled us for a long day walking around Montreal. Another of my characteristics – once I find something good, I hang on to it. So for the next couple of days we started our days at Chez Cora. Continue reading “Breakfast in Montreal”

Nutella: Such things are inevitable

Some time last year, I underwent this temporary crisis. Recently an LJ friend had a similar, end of the world-like experience.

Here’s how I save myself from further anguish – Stock up on Nutella! Need my morning Nutella fix.
Stock-up Nutella jars by Arun Shanbhag

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