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Lemon

Jams & Pickels/ Spring - Summer Special

Fresh Strawberry Jam

It was one o’ clock and I had almost finished my shopping at the farmer’s market. I stopped at a stall which had only two big boxes of fresh organic strawberries and the seller was happily offering them at half the price. I instantly grabbed one box and started thinking of how to preserve these summer treats. There wouldn’t be a better way than fresh homemade strawberry jam! I returned home with the big box in my hands and a big smile 🙂

 

Fresh Strawberry Jam

Fresh Strawberry Jam

All natural with NO preservatives and NO high fructose corn syrup!

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  • After you wash the strawberries, make sure you pat them completely dry. This is very important to preserve the jam for longer time.
  • Hull the strawberries, that means remove the stem and green parts and chope them into quarters or smaller pieces.
  • In a heavy bottom saucepan, mix strawberries with sugar and crush them lightly with a fork. Leave them for half and hour so that sugar dissolves in the resulting juice. (This step is optional)
  • I like to add 4-5 cloves but feel free to skip them. Add lemon juice and a pinch of salt.
  • On a medium flame, let the mixture cook until it starts boiling. Stir the mixture periodically.
  • Let it boil for 15-20 minutes, uncovered; until all moisture evaporates and it starts thickening up. 
  • You have to make sure it's completely cooled down before you pour it into a jar. Do not put the lid until the jam is completely cooled. Else the moisture will spoil all the efforts.
 Tips
  1. At every step, you have to make sure there is no water content.
  2. The glass jar you use for storing the jam has to be completely dry.
  3. I did not sterilize the jar but if you want you can follow the directions here. I washed the jar and let it dry in the sunlight. At home, we used the same trick for the jars used to store pickles.
  4. I added only 1 1/2 cups of sugar because the the strawberries I used were really sweet and I like it on a slightly tangier side, so adjust the quantity accordingly.
  5. Keep it refrigerated if you wish to preserve it for longer time.

 

Breakfast/ Maharashtrian/ Snacks/ Upvasache Padarth

साबूदाण्याची खिचडी / Sabudana Khichadi

Scrumptious Maharashtrian Delicacy

It was the very first time, since our marriage, when my husband was visiting me in Pittsburgh; I wanted to make something he loves. He asked for “साबूदाण्याची खिचडी” (Sabudana Khichadi). I somehow managed to serve him what he wanted but I was not at all happy with my attempt. I knew I had to learn the trick from my mom to make him happy. And now I have excelled it 🙂

I made it again after almost a year and I am really proud of myself 🙂

Sabudana Khichadi

Sabudana Khichadi

Yet another Maharashtrian classic!

Ingredients:

The most important part is amount of water used to soak sabudana. Use just enough water to cover all sabudana grains. Keep it covered for 6-8 hours.

In a wide bowl, separate the sabudana gently and mix it with peanut powder, salt and sugar. Stir it well so that all the grains get coated. Microwave the small potato cubes for 2-3 minutes.

Add ghee in a large pan and a few cumin seeds. When the cumin seeds start to crackle, add the remaining cumin seeds and finely chopped chillies. Add potato cubes and fry them for 1 minute. Add the sabudana mix and stir it together. It takes 10-15 minutes for sabudana to cook nicely. Keep stirring occasionally. If needed add few drops of water and/or ghee. When done, add some cilantro and lime juice and mix again. Add coconut and cilantro while serving.

Mom’s Tips :

  1. If you don’t have 6 hours, use warm water to soak sabudana. It takes around 2-3 hours.
  2. Grind 1 tea-spoon of cumin seeds and green chillies with some sugar. Use this mixture with peanut powder to coat sabudana grains. Sugar makes grinding green chillies easier. It adds nice cumin flavor to khichadi.
  3. Add some cilantro leaves in phodni (tadka).
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