A not so recommended recipe, & a mood board in the making

Last night was my first night alone in my apartment in over one month. It was a mixed feeling of loneliness, sadness, content and relief.

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I got home from the office by 9pm after a crazy busy day and decided to cook…because, well…why not. Honestly, the biggest reason was that I love browsing recipes on Pinterest when I’m hungry in the day. Then I end up ordering groceries online, which then arrive by the time I leave work. By then I’ve usually changed my mind, but feel too bad to waste the food. So, I cooked.

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Made up a salad based on the ingredients I had in the fridge already. Plus I felt like having something fruity. Pineapple, cucumber, cilantro and lemon. Highly recommended if you like all those four ingredients (although I know most people I’ve met hate cilantro).

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Then I mixed all the ingredients together for the patties. Yellow lentils, beets, egg, lemon, goat cheese, onion, salt and pepper. Still wondering why my paste turned out to be so red. I mean I get that its red because of the beets, but I followed the recipe and the recipe was definitely better looking in their photos. Click here to see for yourself.

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I used my new meatball maker tool I got from Maja and Joakim to make even sized patties… Such a perfect gift, especially considering there’s nothing I hate more than getting dirty on my hands. I have this thing with textures…

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The final result was very OK. I honestly wouldn’t recommend it to you guys–it wasn’t bad but it wasn’t delicious either. Hate when that happens. Picked out the pieces of baked goat cheese and enjoyed those, though.

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After finishing up dinner I picked out old magazines and started my creative project of the night. I have this thing about always wanting to do something creative when I’m alone. Light candles, play nice music, and either write, read, build or visualise something.

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The project of the night: Mood boarding for 2018. Something I’ve been looking forward to doing since I saw a Swedish blogger doing it a couple of weeks back.

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I have a weakness for holding a good magazine in my hand and usually pick up at least 2 or 3 of the latest issues every time I travel. Sometimes more. Glad these could be reused to serve as a source of inspiration and material for my board.

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I flipped through magazines, cut and glued quotes, images and letters for over two hours. Note to self: Not recommended to start mood boarding at 11.30pm if you’re like me and struggle to leave things unfinished. If you’re wondering what Bamse, ‘the world’s strongest bear’, is doing on my board, wait no more: His main characteristics are strong and kind–two traits I value and admire. He was also one of my biggest role models in life while growing up.

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Although the mood board isn’t complete yet, I already really like the way its coming along. I’m a very visual person, and generally need to see things in front of me to remember it, understand it, process it, and so on. Screenshots on my phone and underlined sentences in books and magazines tend to get lost over time. This mood board I actually hope to save. Maybe I’ll even frame it, and put it somewhere for me to pull out when motivation falters.

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I would strongly recommend making a mood board to help you visualise whatever you have in mind–for a new project, a new year, a new client, or even just yourself. I also secretly fantasise about my future kids finding these boards and looking back at the kind of things I envisioned and repeatedly told myself as a 27 year old…

A creamy chicken stew with thyme, mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes & white wine

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Home!

After three weeks of traveling and wedding-attending, I’m back for a couple of weeks, with nothing but work and routine on the agenda. I landed from Udaipur by 11am yesterday, and went straight to the office from there. By 8pm I took my suitcase and left for the grocery store. I did two massive rounds of grocery shopping at Natures Basket, first in Churchgate, then in Cuffe Parade.

It’s always such a dramatic experience to go grocery shopping here – I should strap a Go Pro camera to my forehead next time, I actually thought of that when I was in the store while trying to locate chicken broth somehow somewhere. In Sweden and the US I plan my recipes in advance, then go and grocery shop accordingly. In India I usually keep 3-4 recipes in mind when I reach the store, then I choose what to make based on what’s available for the day. Some of my most sought after basic ingredients that are always out of stock: Canned tomatoes, cream (!), broth (vegetable & chicken), bananas, yellow onions, strawberries, olives, basil, thyme, Greek yoghurt…

When I reached home I dragged all the bags up my three floors, then went down again and pulled my massive suitcase in a second round. Gotta love not having an elevator! While home, I lit candles everywhere, listened to podcasts, cooked myself a delicious meal, wrote on my book, and watched two episodes of The Crown Season 2.

Below is the recipe below for all you hungry people out there.

P.S. Rich in flavours, easy & quick to make. This was absolutely delicious!

 

Ingredients (4 people):

  • 500-600 gram chicken filets
  • 1 yellow onion (2 if they’re tiny)
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • Button mushrooms (however many you want–I love mushrooms so I used a full package)
  • Sun-dried tomatoes (150-200 gram)
  • Cherry tomatoes (again, I love tomatoes, so I used a lot)
  • 0.5 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 0.5 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 package of fresh thyme (use however much you like–to taste, I’d say)
  • 200ml light cream or regular milk
  • 100-150ml white wine
  • 3 tablespoons chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon Japanese soy sauce (I doubt the nationality of the soy sauce makes a difference though…)
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1.5-2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • salt, black pepper, lemon
  • butter or olive oil to cook in

To eat with it:

  • Rice or roasted potatoes maybe? I recommend getting mini-potatoes, or halve regular potatoes. Roast them in the oven in salt, pepper, garlic and olive oil. When ready, chop parsley and roll them in before serving
  • Green salad – arugula or spinach would be nice.

How to make it:

  • OPTIONAL: Put your oven on 225 degrees Celsius. Prepare the potatoes, put them in the oven, and roast until ready. Realistically it’ll take somewhere around 25-45 min depending on size of the potatoes and the oven you have at home
  • Clean and chop the chicken in smaller pieces. Chop the onion. Cook the onion and chicken in butter or oil on medium temperature–salt and pepper. When the chicken starts getting some colour (5-10 min), add chopped/pressed garlic cloves, dried rosemary, dried thyme and the mushrooms. Cook on the pan for 5-7 min more
  • Lower the temperature slightly. Add milk or cream, white wine, chicken broth, soy sauce, honey, dijon mustard, sun-dried tomatoes and cherry tomatoes. Let it cook for 10-15 minutes to allow the chicken to pick up all the yummy flavours
  • Add fresh thyme when there’s about 5 min left to cook. Once ready, add some fresh lemon juice, salt and pepper
  • If you made potatoes (or rice), remove the potatoes from the oven and serve all together.

Voila! Yum!

[Recipe borrowed from Swedish food blogger Agnes]

Thai Coconut Shrimp Soup

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I spent the majority of the day yesterday at the pool–swimming, writing, tanning. My favourite things to do, any given Sunday, to recharge and reset between the past and coming week. The sky was bluer than expected, but I still didn’t get much of a tan. As you probably have noticed, there are a lot of news on India’s air quality right now – and rightfully so. Thankfully Bombay isn’t as terrible as Delhi, but its still bad. My eyes are constantly dry and watery (watery eyes is a sign of dry eyes basically), and I get an itchy throat.

After a day at the pool, Saif and I went to see Thor – Ragnarok at the new INOX cinema at Atria Mall. What a movie! Saif is a huge fan of comic books and superheroes since childhood, so I’ve watched quite a few of these in the last few years. Thor – Ragnarok and Dr. Strange were by far my favourite Marvel productions. You may ask yourself if I’m turning into a teenage boy, or perhaps just a female version of my boyfriend… I’ve never appreciated these kind of films until I started watching them with someone who is utterly obsessed. Secretly counting down to Halloween 2018 now, so I can be a Marvel Valkyrie.

I made a yummy Thai coconut shrimp soup for dinner when we got back home. Easy, quick, cheap and delicious – perfect to end a week of binging, both in terms of eating out and drinking. I’m definitely detoxing between now and next week when our friends weddings are kicking off…

Ingredients for Thai coconut shrimp soup:

  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped/minced
  • 4 teaspoons grated fresh ginger root
  • 4 teaspoons minced lemongrass or lemongrass paste
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 pound of shrimp, peeled (I used about 5 medium sized shrimps per person)
  • 4 cups coconut milk
  • 2 cups cabbage, finely shredded
  • Salt to taste

 

For serving:

  • Lime wedges
  • Fresh cilantro or parsley
  • Chopped green/spring onion

 

How to make it:

  1. Add olive oil, garlic, ginger and lemongrass in a large pot over medium heat. Stir for a bit, then add curry, crushed red pepper flakes and the broth. Bring to a light boil (you can increase the temperature slightly if needed). Simmer for 3 minutes or so. Add the shrimp and reduce heat back to medium. Add coconut milk and cabbage. When the soup comes to a light simmer, increase the heat slightly for about a minute, then remove from the heat.
  2. Season with salt to taste. Serve in bowls and top with lime (I love lime so I always OD on this but use as much as you feel like, the more the merrier if you ask me), some cilantro and/or parsley, green onion and some more crushed red pepper if you like it spicy.

 

Enjoy!