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Showing posts from December, 2015

Jingle All The Way

Christmas is my favourite time of the year. And looks like a lot of people concur because Bombay seems decked out in the best of trees and lights at this time of the year. At the start of December, I asked all of you to send me your favourite Christmas pictures from around the city. And what a visual treat it has been, to see such gorgeous trees and Christmas set ups.

From all the entries I received, I present to you my top 10 picks. There are some trees plus some other fun things folks came up with this year. Trees first:

1. The star studded tree at Inorbit Mall



2. My favourite of the lot - white Christmas at Trident in BKC



3. The wooden tree at Taj Mahal Tea House in Bandra



4. The wine bottle tree at Sofitel in BKC



5. The tree that travelled the furthest - all the way from Four Points Sheraton in Vashi



And now on to other cute Christmassy things:

6. Elf's house at Oberoi Mall



7. Santa's sleigh at Pheonix Market City in Kurla



8. Hamley's London themed snow globe at Phoen…

Sugarcraft at Home: Marzipan Apples

I was a bit scared when I asked Zeba for a recipe. If there is one thing I haven't managed to learn in years of dessert making, it's tempering chocolate. And I was pretty sure that whatever recipe this chocolatier sends me, it will have me pulling out double boilers and thermometers. In the end, I did temper chocolate and it was easier than I thought it will be. The resulting candy was also super delicious and totally worth it.

This being December, Zeba shared with me her Christmas recipe for marzipan bonbons. What she does is pour tempered chocolate in the mould to create a shell, fills it with home made marzipan and tops it with more chocolate. I decided to play around with the recipe a bit and created these marzipan apples instead. I must admit I am not a fan of marzipan. Commercial marzipan must be blamed here because it is overly sweet and lacks any kind of texture. But Zeba's marzipan isn't too sweet and by rolling my chocolate dipped marzipan apples in pink hue…

Sugarcrafter: Zeba Kohli

Zeba Kohli did not head home like other children did after school. She went instead to her grandfather's chocolate shop in Marine Lines. As her grandfather and her mother went about their business of making and selling chocolates from the first 'Fantasie Chocolate', she sat in the office and finished her homework. Maybe she didn't want to become a chocolatier at first - she mentions that she studied Physics. But it was at an early age that Zeba took over the reins of the family business and not much later that she became a chocolatier extraordinaire, creating sweet treats that are synonymous with artisan chocolate in Mumbai.

The transition could not have been easy. After all, Zeba was not trained as a chef. But her inquisitive nature kicked in when she joined the business and she added to all the chocolate knowledge she had absorbed from her family by going to training courses around the world. "My grandfather will call one of his pastry chef friends in France an…

The Year of the Bao

I will start with a confession. Up until about two years back, I had no clue what a bao is. Yes, I had heard of folks raving about the pork belly bao at The Table but I had it filed away as something steamed and meaty that doesn't really concern me. Then Cafe Nemo opened and a little over a year back, I had my first taste of their tofu and mushroom baos.

Since then, it looks to me that everyone is putting a bao or two on the menu. The Fatty Bao opened earlier this year with a menu that left everyone raving about pork bellies. And The Bao Haus followed a few months later, doing a 'delivery only' business. But not all baos are created equal. There is monkey bar doing a paneer bhurji steamed bun, and Social calls its pita sandwiches 'pita baos' to cash in on the excitement. It can get pretty confusing.

If you are a vegetarian and a bao newbie like me, look no further. I have checked out all the baos and pseudo-baos in town, skipped over the pork bellied ones and pick…

The Dals of Punjab

If your knowledge of Punjabi cuisine comes from visits to dhabas and 'North Indian' restaurants, you can be excused for thinking that dal makhani is the only lentil dish eaten in Punjab. Made with whole black gram and laden with butter and spices, the delicious dal makhani is in fact a special occasion treat. Also, because it is tedious and takes a long time to cook, even Punjabis prefer getting a takeout of dal makhani from one of the many neighbourhood dhabas.

Also, the toor dal or arhar dal, a pulse that most of India (I'm thinking of you Gujarat, Maharashtra and UP) eats every day has no place in Punjabi cooking. My parents didn't even know such a thing existed until the first 'South Indian Dosa' place opened up in the 1980s and starting serving sambhar.

So what lentils do we cook then? A whole variety of them. In my home, where a lentil dish is cooked for dinner pretty much every day, the options range from the 'light' moong dal to both red and br…

Contest Alert: The Best Christmas Tree

Today is the first day of the Christmas month, which means that soon enough, the hotels, shopping malls and streets of Bombay will be sparkling with lights. Every year, the city puts up an impressive array of Christmas trees and decorations. This year, you can help Bombay Foodie find the best looking Christmas Tree and win a prize too!

Here's how it works:

1. Click a picture of your favourite Christmas Tree or an interesting christmas decor you spot around town. The picture must be of a tree/christmas decor that is:
(a) set up for 2015 Christmas
(b) within the city limits of Mumbai/Greater Mumbai and
(c) accessible to public (for example, in a shopping mall or a hotel or store)

2. Leave a comment here with a link to the picture or share it with me on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram by tagging it with #BombayChristmas. Do mention where the picture was taken.

3. Just to make sure I know you and can reach you, please follow BombayFoodie on Facebook, Twitter and/or Instagram and tag @…