Rajasthan Trip – Part 1

Rajasthan Trip | Kankana Saxena Photography

We started this year with an ambitious plan. 8 days of road trip in Rajasthan! As crazy as it sounded, we couldn’t help getting excited. Our first family vacation, finally! I always wanted to visit this place, enjoy the rich culture, colors and their food. But with a baby, was that a good idea? We were freaking out.

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Paneer Corn Cabbage Cup

Paneer Corn Cabbage Cups | Playful Cooking

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, I should be sharing a chocolate pleasure. Instead, I am going to ask you to try this salad. We never really go grand on celebrating Valentine’s Day. We fancy a casual dinner at home in our pajamas instead of waiting for a table in crowded restaurants. And this salad could be a great start. Snuggling in the couch, eating with bare hands.

 

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Garlic And Fresh Peppercorn Fried Rice

Garlic and Fresh Peppercorn Fried Rice | Playful Cooking

In my world of wish-I-had-more-time, dishes like these come superbly handy. A little chopping, a quick sauté and dinner is prepared. We don’t eat rice that often, but it was a clever idea to cook some on Sunday night so that Monday starts off on a great note. Good leftovers somehow help kick the blues. Knowing that you have more time to play with your baby and less time in the kitchen, it is bliss! Plus I was able to send my husband off to work with a delicious lunch box. It was a good start to a new week.

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Mughlai Paratha

Mughlai Paratha | Playful Cooking

A messy kitchen counter, flour everywhere, including my hair, gummy hands, super sticky rolling pin plus board and a frustrated me. There was either too much water or too much flour, every single time! I just couldn’t get the ratio right and hated all the gluey clutter it made. A complete chaos and the end result were barely edible. For a very long time, I served something close to papadam in the name of roti or paratha. The entire process was too tough for me.

Now imagine my situation when I got ambitious and planned to prepare stuffed paratha. As far as I could remember, at least half the time, I was in tears and Arvind would come to rescue with warm bowls of instant noodles. He never complained. He knew I was trying and that I didn’t grow up eating roti or paratha everyday. Even after five years of preparing Indian flat bread almost everyday, it’s still way too far from perfection. But I am not giving up that easily!

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Avocado Cucumber Cold Soup

Avocado Cucumber Cold Soup | Playful Cooking

Last year was a crazy year for us, and a very special one. A tiny person arrived in our life and turned it upside down. We became a family. Avyan took his first flight when he was just 4 months old when we moved back to India. We sold all our stuff and started from scratch with 6 suitcases packed with clothes and baby stuff, well, mostly baby stuff.

 

It was not an easy year for us. There were a lot of frustrating days, but others were filled with bliss and fun. A mixed bag it was. I have no clue what’s in store for this year and I stopped making resolutions long back. Planning to just go with the flow and try to make the best out of it. I do know that with my boys next to me, any day is a happy day for me. I can deal with any thing that comes my way. So, bring it on 2015!

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