Recollecting flavours of the summer


All these years I would approach cooking like I approached everything else. I would pick one item/ skill/ task that I had no clue about and start doing it from scratch. My success rate was normal. Somethings turned out great whether in the kitchen or otherwise in life.

I would always look back at that event and wonder why I chose it. And I could never really come up with a convincing reason other than because I wanted to.

But recently I had an epiphany off just another Tuesday (or was it a Thursday) when I least expected it and that’s when I decided I wasn’t always going to start from scratch just because I perceived I knew nothing about the task at hand. I was first going to use what I had to best of my ability and then seek things to do them better.


I know! I know! What does this have to do with cooking! Everything.  I stopped going in search of recipes where I would have to buy everything from scratch.

Now I just raid my cupboard (errm my mother’s for now but nobody is concerned about such tiny details) and build a recipe around ingredients I find. For salads, stir frys and even sandwiches — the search,build and eat method works. But for cakes, not so much.


I found a unassuming brown-paper packet of what said tulsi ke beej. It completely looked like what khus khus would look like if black and all of a sudden, inspiration struck.

I remembered seeing this recipe but, on second thought, it seemed really rich, especially given that I am not supposed to be eating any sweets at all.  But rarely I have gone back from her site disappointed and sure enough, in her forums is where I found this gem. And a Nigella recipe, no less. And not very rich.


It’s a fragrant cake,  not rich, a delicious crunch and for a chocolate-lovah like me, a great discovery that without cocoa and chocolate, you still can get a finger-linking good cake.


And oh yes,  I decided to stick to the recipe for a change and did not replace the self-raising flour ( maida with baking powder). Thanks to a temperamental over, it was not a perfect looking cake, but hey matter before form right?


Also in Mumbai’s rain-drenched days, nothing like a lemony bite with a hot cuppa to remind of why lemon is such a delicious flavour.

Here is the recipe I followed.

1 cup softened, unsalted butter
3/4 cup caster sugar
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1 1/2 lemons
3 lg eggs, beaten (I used four small to medium eggs)
1 1/3 cups self-raising flour
1/2 cup plain flour
2 tablespoons poppyseeds

1) beat together butter and sugar
2) add zest
3) beat in eggs
4) mix in flour and poppyseeds
5) add lemon juice

Bake for 1 hour @ 180 (I baked at 50 C, for less than 20 minutes)


8 thoughts on “Recollecting flavours of the summer

  1. I ♥ lemony bites ike these. Just perfect for rainy days…for that matter, for any day! I did a lemon cake a few days ago too, as a departure from chocolate!

  2. It’s a shop in the Andheri west market lane (the one way where only BEST buses are allowed when coming from Versova). It’s only one store and is always crowded. Ask anyone where you get Ayurveda ingredients. They should be able to point it out. Will try and get the name, in case I go down that road.

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