Cooking is an art and patience a virtue… Careful shopping, fresh ingredients and an unhurried approach are nearly all you need. There is one more thing – love. Love for food and love for those you invite to your table. With a combination of these things you can be an artist – not perhaps in the representational style of a Dutch master, but rather more like Gauguin, the naïve, or Van Gogh, the impressionist. Plates or pictures of sunshine taste of happiness and love. ~ Keith Floyd
The featured blogger for the month of May on Spiceroots is Shireen who writes the phenomenal blog “Ruchik Randhap”. Her blog oozes so much happiness and love – for people in her life, for the food she cooks and best of all for traditional Mangalorean cooking. She sources forgotten recipes, recreates recipes that she grew up with and blogs with pure joy.
Today’s recipe is from Shireen’s blog. I have not asked her if I could use the recipe. I wanted this blog post to be a surprise for Shireen, so taking a permission before hand would have made that impossible.
Shireen inspires you to get out of your comfort zone and try out something new. Even if it is a dish or an ingredient you had not heard of before. And she does it by simply showing you how. I can’t write enough about her delicious Mangalorean recipes, home made wines and traditional snacks. She writes about them weaving in stories and anecdotes, history and methodology and the warmth just touches you somehow.
While talking to her about a vegan biryani that I had to make for some friends, I came to know how big she was on all biryani and pulao dishes. It was an Aha moment for me. No wonder we connected. We are both Biryani buffs . Just take a look at her recipe section – an entire section devoted to Biryanis.
What really inspires me about Shireen’s work is her approach to traditional cooking. She keeps it pure, she calls the dishes by their original names and if that was not enough, she mesmerizes with great food photographs.
I could have chosen to try out any dish from her blog, so why did I choose bonda sherbet? Well, there is a story-
She used basil seeds in the recipe. And since the basil seeds soaked in water looked like something my Mom would give us in a cool drink on hot summer days, I had to set out to do some research. ( yes I know that you know I did not research, I just googled;))
There they were- basil seeds and we call them bubre byol ( BU (as in BUT ) – Re as in ritz ; be yole ) in my mother tongue Kashmiri. I was thrilled to finally realize that they had been in front of me all the time. I just had no idea that they were called basil seeds. Another Aha moment!
So I got myself a pack of these tiny little darlings and set out to make this refreshing drink that also has health benefits rooted in Ayurveda.
Need I say more?
- 16 oz tender coconut water from about 2 tender coconuts
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 4-5 mint leaves muddled
- 1/2 tsp basil seeds (soaked for at least 20 min in some water)
- Sugar if you need it
- a pinch of salt
- Chill the coconut water before you make the drink.
- Using a spoon, scoop out the coconut cream from inside the coconuts.
- Give the coconut cream a rough chop and set aside
- Now mix all the ingredients and drink up.
Shireen’s notes say that you may need to add sugar based on the sweetness of the coconut water. Use it if you need to.
You can also use the prepacked coconut water like Zico or Koh. You will just not have the coconut cream for extra yumminess.