Sunday, May 23, 2010

Oatmeal Pancakes and Mango Campote

A Sunday morning breakfast inspired from Ms. Smitten Kitchen's recipe. So for the 'trying to lose weight ' me- oatmeal sounded perfect. Yea there is 3 tbsp of butter but that is divided in 18 pancakes. And as my organic form of cooking  goes (note - not organic ingredients but the method in which I cook) these pancakes ended up more like dosas or crepes. Of course we have lovely Alfonsos, Dusseris, Langdas in the fridge that inspired the mango compote. But again as inspiration goes I had to modify what is expected of a traditional fruit compote. After all I am not spending two hours of my morning in the gym to only drown it with sugar syrupy fruits and mangoes are very naturally sweet.
So here goes:

Makes about 18 pancakes
3/4 cups oat flour (you can make this by pulsing rolled oats into a food processor or spice grinder until finely ground; 1 cup of oats yielded 3/4 cup oat flour for me)
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon Kosher or coarse salt
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly (plus extra for the pan)
1 1/4 cups whole milk
1 cup cooked oatmeal
2-3  tablespoon honey (according to taste)
2 large eggs

1.  Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
2. Cook the other cup of oatmeal in 2 cups of water and add a pinch of salt.

3. Mix all the wet ingredients in a smaller bowl.  (The picture above is honey floating on the cooked oatmeal.

4.  Rub some butter on a hot tawa or iron skillet. Ladle a spoonful of the batter on the hot cast iron skillet or tawa.
 5. When the batter bubbles on the tawa and the edges seem to be browning up, flip the pancake.
6. When both sides are a golden brown the pancake is ready to serve with fruits. You can make 2-3 pancakes at a time. Wipe the tawa clean before you start the next batch.
If you lose patience like me you can make them larger into crepes or doasa.

To create the toppings:
Blend the mango to make the compote. (yes yes i know that simple- but simplicity is a beautiful thing). The texture is beautiful.
A plate of fruits as topping. Fresh berries would have been perfect. But I made do with apples, bananas, mangoes, papayas, watermellon....
 Now for the finish:
P.S.: Oatmeal reduces cholesterol and reduces risk of heart diseases. It is a great source of energy after a workout!

Sunday, May 16, 2010


"The colors mattered too. In fact, as I grew older the color of the food mattered to me as much as the taste. I disliked vegetables that were cooked into a grey- green mash. I liked shining green bhindi, sparkling yellow masoor dal, burnished copper pumpkin, sliced red watermelon, diced orange papayas, unsliced red apples, leaf green guavas, snow white curd."
- Tarun Tejpal, the Alchemy of desire
Read in a book about called 'India- A Sense of Place' while eating my morning plate of fruits.

Back to Work and such….(post overdue by two weeks now)

So it was my first day of work yesterday. Yes! After a 6 month hiatus (with the leg injury and move to different continents).  Of course I was excited and eager to get to work and take on Mumbai with a storm.  But wait a second- what was the headline in the newspaper this morning- the Mumbai Motormen went on strike. What does that mean? That means the Mumbai local train – the lifeline of the city that transports almost 6.9 million people to work and home was not running.  Can they do that? Well I guess they did.  The news announced constantly only travel in case of an emergency. Does the first day of work constitute for an emergency? Of course it does.
So in a mile long line with a thousand other people waiting for the same bus I finally made it to work at noon. (I was supposed to be there at 10). Of course everyone was sympathetic and nice. But seriously could the motormen have not chosen a better day to express their disdain on not getting paid enough.  If this was the US it would have never happened- so I thought to myself- well kinda the CTA was quite iffy.
What a change in my life. Till last week I was happily sitting in my bedroom reading fancy blogs. Oh! And what fancy blogs. The Confessions of Pioneer woman’s saga on how she gave up her black pumps and moved to a real ranch and rode away with her handsome cowboy in the sunset. The promise of a great real life romance that she recommends reading with a hot cup of coffee and by a fireplace. And so I did read it with- a hot coffee and a fireplace- i.e. the Mumbai heat. She had her shares of woes but I’m sure she did not have to worry about motormen going on strike and bringing a thriving city to a halt. Or the delightful Miss Humble Pie being upset about some thing that went wrong in making the most perfect layer cake I have ever seen a human being make. Now that is living in America for you- your basic resources to survive were never a question so you could concentrate on other things in life like “will he call me or not” sagas.
And today I have joined the ranks of close to 10 million working Mumbaikers stranded because the Mumbai Motormen have gone on strike. Oh! It’s going to take us 4 hours to get home and Oh! The cab drivers will charge an arm and a leg because they know we don’t have a choice and Oh! The buses will be so packed that we might suffocate to death. Ah! All I can say is this is Mumbai meri jaan (this is Mumbai my love). I have to mention I did not suffer an insane ride back home. My wonderful mom came to my rescue and picked me up. The traffic was also surprisingly not bad.
On a more eventful note and yes I have to mention this- the sole surviving terrorist from the 26/11 carnage in Mumbai- Ajmal Amir Kasab was finally found guilty by the court. After 2 years. What? It took two years to prove a man, who was part of a killing spree of over 200 people and was caught in the act on camera and by 100 s of witnesses, was guilty. If this was the US,  I bet they would have taken him to some crazy Guantanemo Bay high security prison and in 15 days pronounced capital punishment.  But this is not the US and I have heard some lawyers argue- Innocent until proven guilty- everyone should get a fair trial. Really? Well its over. He is to be hung but there are some complications I believe (shaking my head).
This is a food blog and not a current affairs rant column. So coming soon is homemade dosas. The recipe is pretty complex and I have been adjusting to the new thriving pace of one of the busiest, most crowded, most happening cities in the world. I am back home in Mumbai and loving it!
The image is my dad's wonderful laiyya- channa that is an essential in our household and the yummiest snack. Also the photo is taken by a macro lens. How lovely are the details!