#finelychoppedbreakfasts

MOST RECENT

I guess that if you are Indian and a Bengali at that, then it’s fine to turn the French toast which is classically sweet into a savoury anda bread, or deem paruti as we Bengalis call it, top it with sautéed vegetables (not overcooked) and a dash of organic balsamic vinegar from Modena which was purchased at Bangkok by your wife for you. .
Not being boxed in by the way ‘things should be’ allows one to play with flavours. As I heard in a discussion yesterday, ‘you can create value only when there is joy.’
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#foodblogger #foodie #foodwriter #yum #food #foodphotos #finelychopped #finelychoppedbreakfasts #finelychoppedkitchen #finelychoppedrecipes #bengaliinmumbai #finelychoppedblog #freestylecooking #breakfast #frenchtoast #eggs #shotoniphone7plus #homecooking #platesoffinelychopped #happiness

So I finally met longtime Instagram buddy
@thefinelychopped after chatting online and discovering we have so much in common, not just food and writing. I was so glad he finally made it to Pune and allowed me to show him around a bit. I learned so much from him and thoroughly enjoyed watching him at work, so relieved I'm not the only person searching for good food and taking photos and videos!!! LOL ( that's for #lovethisman and #precious #daughter to make note of!!)
What struck me most is how down to earth and fun he is, how real. I love that he enjoys the experience, and is not a food snob. I am wishing him a lot of place in his #travelingbelly today because he has such exciting tastings lined up across Pune. And I want to thank him for appreciating my Pune and making me see it afresh too.
Koregaon Park, you are still beautiful. And I love how Pune is still a village.
#finelychoppedbreakfasts #foodloversofinstagram
#foodblogger #pune #koregaonpark #punemagic

‘There’s a McDonalds near Panvel. Can we stop there on the way?’
‘There’s a mall in the expressway.’
‘Does it have coffee? Like a CCD?’
‘It has a Starbucks,’ said my young ‘Ola outstation‘ driver, looking at me as if was Rip Van Winkle.
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Yes, it’s been ages since I’ve headed to Pune. This time, to eat. To write. Not to make market research findings presentations to clients unlike before.
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Lovely vada pav and pohe from the Shri Krishna Bhiwandi stall. The flattened batata vada reminding me that I am not in Mumbai now. And then, a short cappuccino, extra shot, from Starbucks. A company that has managed to source paper lids and has said bye to plastic. .
#FinelyChoppedTravels #PuneFinelychopped #Food #FoodTravel #FoodBlogger #Foodie #food #FoodWriter #MaharashtrianFood #finelychoppedbreakfasts #firstcappuccinooftheday

My shift to whole grains from refined ones has been an interesting one ever since I set my mind to it and decided to be open minded about it.
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Red rice has most unobtrusively taken over the place of basmati in my life. I’ve really enjoyed trying out millet based South Indian dishes. Trying out breads beyond the ‘softest and whitest’ has opened a whole new world of flavours and textures to me. And it has all reflected well on my health goals too for now.
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This picture is from this morning when I lightly toasted sourdough wholewheat bread from La Folie. Had one slice with my home made basil and no cheese pesto. The other with the bacon maple canola aoli that a friend got me from the states. Used the last egg left in the fridge to complete the tableaux.
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Raise your hand if the tomato, capsicum, green chillies, salt & pepper omelette featured among the first dishes that you ever made in your life.
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Made mine today with egg whites & olive oil. Called in for the whole wheat bread from La Folie. Used the trick that I learnt on Instagram of sautéing the vegetables separately and then adding them at the end. The omelette doesn’t break this way. Used a small round omelette pan for this which helped too.
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Boiled egg whites, home made red pepper, almond & Rosemary hung curd/ thick yogurt dip, wholewheat burger buns. Breakfast today. .
It’s been more than three months since I embarked on what I call the #littlejackhornermeals journey.
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Largely home cooked meals with lots of experimentation on my part and with attempts at mindful eating, balanced meals, portion control and introduction of grains and vegetables in my diet which were never there before. To be honest, I’ve enjoyed the ride. Consistency and sustainability are key to anything I do and for me that happens when it comes from inside as it had in this case.
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Some of you have told me that I should share results. Well, I weighed myself a few days back and realised that I’ve reached half the annual weight loss goal that my doc had suggested to me. Yesterday I did my medical tests and the improvements there (Sp sugar and triglyceride levels) made my doc say, ‘you’ve done amazingly well.’
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Mood level today: Little Jack Horner indeed (surely you’ve read the nursery rhyme as a kid)
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Can’t let the foot off the pedal of course and am happy to have finally brought in a bit of consistency in my evening walks of late. Listening to rock music while doing so from my college days has suddenly made them more enjoyable too.
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I had once wondered how I could be a food writer if I imposed dietary restrictions on myself? Well this period has also been one of my most prolific in terms of writing and the response has been encouraging and thank you for that. As it is said in Buddhism, ‘it is the heart that is important.’ #foodblogger #foodwriter #mindfuleating #finelychoppedbreakfasts #gratitude #turningpoisonintomedicine

Missed the bench which we used to refer to as ‘ours.’ And the desk where the Travelling Belly was born.
Loved the welcome back though, despite the reshuffle and rearrangement.
Loved that the chicken sandwich was as soulful and soft as ever.
Loved how Sylvia got me brown bread ones from the upper floor as there were only white bread chicken sandwiches left downstairs.
Loved the fact that the foam in the cappuccino stayed firm till the end while I finished an interesting but long work call.
Loved the smiles from the lady at the cash counter, the delivery boys who get to meet more often now as I call in home from here more often than I come over now.
Loved chatting with the couple who come here everyday for breakfast and who were my neighbours when I used to sit and work at the table by the bench. And nodding and smiling back to the elderly lady in a salwar who comes here everyday for a puff (mutton I hope) and who makes it a point to smile and say hi to everyone around.
It’s gloomier inside than before and yet bright and sunny too.
It was good to be back home at Candies today.

#candies #finelychoppedbreakfasts #firstcappuccinooftheday #bandra #cafe #finelychoppedblog #thetravellingbelly #mumbaistories

Poonam paring my kaatla in the front.
Her sister, Sangeeta, the ilish at the back.
Their mom, Heera bai who started the shop 40 years back, the tyangra and pabda which I picked up for the missus.
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You will find some bangda, surmai and pomfret in my bajarer tholi (shopping bag) too. The local fishing season has started again from the first Poonam told me. ‘Kolis get impatient sitting at home,’ as she puts it. That means fresher sea fish is back in the market. .
A very ‘Bengali in Mumbai’ Sunday morning indeed. .
#foodblogger #foodie #foodwriter #yum #food #foodphotos #mumbaistories #finelychopped #finelychoppedbreakfasts #finelychoppedkitchen #finelychoppedrecipes #littlejackhornermeals #bengaliinmumbai #mumbaifinelychopped #finelychoppedblog #mackerel #pomfret #kaatla #hilsa #seafood #shotoniphone7plus #fish #indianfood #bengalifood #homecooking #market #fishmarket #wetmarket #koli

This saucepan, given to me by wife’s aunt, but I am managing perfectly shaped egg white omelettes for the first time in my life thanks to it. It’s topped with chopped spring onions and red bell pepper and is seasoned with salt and crushed black pepper. I pour in the whisked egg in the pan and cover it with a lid and let it cook on the lowest flame and then gently flip. It’s a pan meant for the oven my mom in law tells me but I’ve been using it on the gas hob.

Two super fast deliveries from Swiggy today. First Bakers Dozen and then Blue Tokai Coffee Roasters Bandra
So this is this morning’s:
#LittleJackHornerMeals #FinelyChoppedBreakfasts
#FirstCappuccinoOfTheDay #CuttingEdgeCartini post

Just realised that we do get nice natural light by the kitchen counter for breakfast pics. It’s as if every day is one of discovery in this house though we’ve been here for about ten months now.
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Spotted the ghee roast masala that I bought at Mangalore and decided to make myself a ghee roast egg white omelette. It’s another matter that the doc friend that I went to Mangalore with pooh poohs the egg white obsession. Currently I try to balance the number of yolks I have in a week. .
Loved the texture of the omelette today. Added the masala to the eggs and whisked it and poured it in an omelette (small, round and flat) pan and covered it with a lid and kept it on a low flame.
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I’d sautéed the red and green capsicum first, removed them from the pan and then poured in the egg without any extra oil. There are more capsicum pieces below the egg. I added very little of the masala though. Much less than a red blooded Mangalorean would. You could actually make the omelette in ghee too. I am told that Parsis did so traditionally. Or was that only my wife’s family?
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Toasted the sourdough that I’d bought from La Folie yesterday and it was nice and crunchy today.
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#foodblogger #foodie #foodwriter #yum #food #foodphotos #mumbaistories #finelychopped #finelychoppedbreakfasts #finelychoppedkitchen #finelychoppedrecipes #littlejackhornermeals #omelette #eggwhites #finelychoppedblog #finelychoppedtravels #breakfast #masala #spices #mangaloreanfood #shotoniphone7plus #gheeroast #indianfood #homecooking #platesoffinelychopped
#capsicum #bellpeppers

My ten year old knife set had gone a bit blunt and I was wondering what to do next when this amazing set of kitchen knives came in out of the blue from Cartini yesterday. I was so chuffed to see that they were personally monogrammed that I had not noticed the most thoughtful card that they had sent with it. Thank you guys, I am really touched.
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Put one to use today when I made a breakfast of sourdough wholewheat bread from La Folie, layered with a hung curd and broken walnut dip. On top of this went finely chopped bell peppers and bokchoy, sautéed in olive oil for thirty seconds with sliced almonds and then with boiled egg whites added at the end. The seasoning was dry garlic chutney from Mangalore and pink salt. Had forgotten how a sharp knife felt like!
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Trivia question. Anyone remembers what my original pen name for the blog was?
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#breakfast #finelychoppedbreakfasts #littlejackhornermeals #sandwich #eggwhites #foodblogger #foodwriter #CuttingEdgeCartini #gift #knife

My idea of indulgence. Chilli cheese egg at La Folie Lab. .
‘Everything separate,’ as @spalifekainaz prefers it and as I do too now.
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Later bumped into chef Sanjana and her husband Parthesh, who own the place, and who had come on a store visit. Had a nice, long chat with them. It was lovely getting to know about the principles that drive them. A philosophy which shows in the wonderful quality of our favourite dishes here. Dishes which have made La Folie our favourite haunt around and our yardstick for evaluating all other cafe/ bistro options in the city. .
#cafe #bandra #chefs #finelychoppedbreakfasts #breakfast #eggs #toast

Another cafe picture. No laptop today. Just came to unwind and pamper myself.

#finelychoppedbreakfasts #breakfast #bandra #mumbai #cafe #firstcappuccinooftheday

Came out to a cafe to work after ages. Have hardly done that since we moved into our new place.
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Found the early morning rush a bit disconcerting but then finally got a comfortable seat thanks to the alert staff. The akoori turned out to be a bhoorji though seasoned well. Then my cappuccino arrived and it was served with a side of rain and suddenly my Monday seemed nice and sunny.

#breakfast #finelychoppedbreakfasts #cafe #cappuccino #freelancerlife #foodblogger #foodwriter #firstcappuccinooftheday #bandra #mumbaistories

Mutton kevabs, Russian kevabs (chicken, potato and cheese mix), margi na ras chawal ( Chicken curry with a crushed cashew based gravy and potatoes and rice). Parsi for Sundays.
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The missus and I caught up with some of her friends for lunch today. The father of one, the late Dadi Pastakia, used to cook for them and feed them this meal or versions of this everyday after college. His daughter, Rita, carried on the tradition today and brought over food cooked as per her father’s recipes and in the generous quantities that he’d approve of. We met at the house of Perin Aunty, the sister of the late Jamshed Uncle, who was a dear friend of Dadi’s and who was very fond of the group too. Some today were from the original gang and some like me fortunate to have became part of it over the years.
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The two gentlemen must have been smiling upstairs to see us all together, creating new memories soaked in classic flavours and unbridled love, warmth and lots of good cheer.
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This is from the ‘check the fridge and clear what’s in it’ school of cooking. No, it’s not a murg hara bhara.
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Wrapped chicken in a foil and put it in the air fryer for 15 min at 200C with 1/2 a teaspoon of olive oil with a sprinkling of salt.
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Opened the foil from the top, took some roughly chopped broccoli & finely chopped red bell peppers, a touch more of salt and added it the chicken, and kept it in for another 15 min at 200 C with the surface of the foil open this time.
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Put the contents on a plate once done and dabbed some home made rocket, garlic, walnut and olive oil pesto on to the chicken. I had a slice of sourdough toast with it too.
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What are the #LittleJackHornerMeals all about you asked?
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It’s a name that I have given to the dishes that I cook up after I decided to overhaul the way I eat and yet eat well within the ambit of the ingredients and produce I’ve been told to stick to as far as possible. I have really enjoyed the window of creativity that it has opened for me. .
Today I spotted the mortar and pestle which I had once lugged all the way from Chiang Mai and had then put it into a cupboard after using it for a bit. We’d taken it out for a shoot recently.
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I cleaned it and sautéed some finely red bell peppers, a garlic clove, and a few almonds in olive oil and pounded this together in the mortar. Then added it to hung curd with a pinch of pink salt and dukkah and a few drops of extra virgin olive oil. Layered it on crisp sourdough (bought from La Folie yesterday) toast. To this I added roughly chopped boiled egg whites and drizzled some more EVOO on top. .
Took a bite and like little Jack Horner in the nursery rhyme said ‘what a good boy am I.’
The plate was a gift from @euphorhea a while back and she’s just begun retailing her hand painted plates. It’s a bit worse for the wear after being in the dish washer because of the hot water so better to hand wash it.
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Another successful experiment in my attempt to make boiled egg whites interesting.
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Sautéed sliced capsicum and crushed walnuts in a teaspoon of olive oil for 30 sec with some pink salt and a pinch of oregano. Turned off the hob and added the egg whites and mixed it gently.
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Layered it on slices of sourdough multigrain wholewheat bread and drizzled some extra virgin olive oil on top. The bread was from La Folie, Bandra.
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PS This post is not about extolling the medicinal virtues of egg whites. It’s about my love for eating well.
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When one wakes up late and knows whom to call up for breakfast
#breakfast #finelychoppedbreakfasts #sandwich #bandra #mumbaistories

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