Rains…before time!

The surprising rains have surely brought a drop in the temperature and relief. We were waiting for it to arrive by the 10th of June but the sudden downpour is definitely amazing! Raindrops on leaves, the smell of the earth and everything beautiful and fresh…I thought monsoons were yet to arrive, but this is surely a nice change as I returned from my UK + Singapore trip, which literally had me me on my toes! And before I give you all my schedule for today…
Saturday, had me tied up in a meeting at office with Manish Tandon , CEO, Indian Cookery Pvt Ltd – my new company to rearrange my restaurant vertical regarding the positioning of Sanjeev Kapoor brand restaurants which includes Khazana and the The Yellow Chilli. Then, on Sunday, my family and I decided to make it as lazy as it could possibly be and spent all our time at home. Had some quality time relaxing at home with Alyona and kids and had Laksa for lunch. Then dozed off…these overseas trips surely makes one a little sleep deprived!
Back in action on Monday at Kolkata, the city of joy – where I began my day with an interview at the RED FM Studios around 11.45 am. By the time I got over from there, it was time for me to rush for the FoodFood Maha Challenge event which was scheduled around 1.30 pm at the Forum Mall at Elgin Road. Had an awesome time cooking up Fresh Dough Pizza, Prawn Balchao Golgappa and Mango Stewed Srikhand for the lovely and warm Kolkataites!
Also, have reserved my evening for Mishti Doi and Sandesh – just can’t miss these two when I’m here! And on my way back to the airport, have plans to check my upcoming TYC restaurant at Jessore Road, which is near the airport.
Besides all this, let’s welcome the monsoons with some recipes that absolutely go well with it like…
Till I write again.
Sanjeev Kapoor

Maha Challenge Roadshow! Maha success! Tomorrow in Mumbai

Even though it is a hectic week, I am determined to travel the way I enjoy best! By rail – in Shatabdi as I write this, on my way to Surat and enjoying the peace! Too much of air travel does get tiring but a train journey still has that bit of excitement attached for me!
Delhi and Noida events on May 6 – done – with a great turn out. Then, I spent Saturday in Kuwait where I launched the Khazana food range at their Lulu supermarket. Again a sea of very enthusiastic food lovers who enjoyed the demos thoroughly. Sunday was at home – time to put the feet up. From today something monumental is starting in my kitchens: trials for the The Yellow Chilli Cookbook that has long been on the anvil! My team of dedicated chefs is preparing the recipes for the home cook with the authentic TYC flavour! I think it is going to be an excellent collection of recipes.
Tomorrow, May 10, is a grand event of FoodFood Maha Challenge in Mumbai at Oberoi Garden City, Off Western Express Highway, Dindoshi, Goregaon (E). I will be demonstrating Fresh Dough Pizza, Egg Balchao Golgappe and Shrikhand with Mango. Be there 2 pm onwards and catch the buzz! I do hope to see a lot of avid cooks there! Registrations are going to happen on the spot.
Before I log off for the moment, let me share some recipes. These are especially for the vacationing kids who want yummy snacks, a different one, everyday!
Till I write again.
Sanjeev Kapoor

Mango is king, tips to remain cool

Spent a good part of the day commuting to and fro Pune. Attended the Mango Fiesta at TYC Pune. The dishes are intriguing and you can have your fill of great new recipes with mangoes there (it is located at Lifestyle, Koregaon Park). I love this juicy king of the fruits and also know that they are enriched with vitamin A that is good for eyesight and also improves formation of healthy epithelium so that you keep away common infections. Enjoy the ripe ones as dessert, pickle the raw ones and better still boil a few raw mangoes, dilute the pulp with aqua, add a pinch or two of roasted cumin powder and black salt and cool down with a glass of chilled panna which will give the colas a run for their money. Our health gurus say with every mango you eat, drink a glassful of milk. Mango has sugars but no protein. Milk has the latter but not the former. So why not combine them, yeah, a mango milkshake is the best, for it will give your body the best nourishment for the summer.

It is also the gourd season. It is the time to bring home the pethas, laukis and tindas. They are fresh produce with high water content and if made the right way, make lunch and dinner substantial with curd and chapatis. Throw in a few cucumbers too as they are refreshing and cooling. Have them in a sandwich for breakfast, have them cut as batons for mid-morning munchies, have them in the raita for lunch…apply some cucumber juice on your face as a natural bleach and toner, place slices of it on your eyes to provide coolness. Wow, that’s a long list.

Recipes for summer could include Manpasand Lauki, Aam ka Panna and Cucumber Koshimbir.

More updates from Singapore later in the week.

Till I write again
Sanjeev Kapoor.

Phir Jeet Gaye!!!

Spice routers are on a winning spree! Yesterday we beat Paymate and now we are in the semi finals to be played on May 15. Paymate put up 39 runs with Dilpreet from our team taking two wickets, Swapnil and Jahid taking one each. Our turn to bat and we did 40 with 5 balls remaining….Shashi a strong innings of 23 and Jahid 8 runs. I thoroughly enjoyed giving the running commentary! I didn’t know it was so much fun!

I see the Spice Routers totally restless and raring to go for it on the 15th! Well, there are a few days to wait….and work to do! For me, lots to wind up before I leave with family for Singapore. Attending the Mango Fiesta at the Pune TYC on Wednesday.

As the mood is already veering toward the Orient, why not cook up some easy oriental recipes right now, right here!

Chicken satay
Sizzling Singapore Chilli Bean Curd
Green papaya salad

Till I write again.
Sanjeev Kapoor.

Preparing for Exams, Special Recipes

Came back from Delhi on Sunday. That city too is getting hotter and winter seems long gone. By the time I reached home it was nearly five. Anyway, caught up with my pending mails and as my elder daughter Rachita is preparing for her 10th std board exams, I made her a special chicken dish for dinner. In fact, I would rather give children who are doing a lot of studying for the coming month more of proteins, vegetables and fruits than carbohydrates (read, paranthe, fried bread based snacks etc). Protein keeps them alert and too many carbs and sugar can take them into an energy slump. Alyona is also careful about some daily physical activity for Rachita like a walk together or some little work out in our home gym. Also as the craving for roadside foods always seems existent, it is best to dish up hygienic stuff at home when the demand comes! I will give some recipes here to start with as also a whole lot on my website. What should the children eat during the actual examination days is a different menu!

Ahmedabad TYC is slowly progressing towards a March opening. Why should I be mentioning this? Well, cooking for the discerning Gujarati is actually a dilemma! They love food like no other but they are also fine critics! But the fact that they love trying out new things makes menu planning very exciting.
So here we go with some kid friendly recipes that can cause a ripple of excitement when your child is studying – Garden Vegetable and Almond Soup, Akhrot Murgh, Chocolate Coffee.

Till I write again.
Sanjeev Kapoor.

New Books, Ad Shoot

Morning began with good tidings about the arrival of a baby girl for Chef Anupa Das! We wish her and her husband Pradipto the best and happy parenting!

Kitchen is bustling with trials for Makar Sankranti recipes. Yes, a lot of til varieties and this will be visible around Sunday so you will have plenty of time to shop and make them well before the 14th. Work in progress in full force at TYC Ahmedabad and more reports when our COO Rajeev returns from the city.

Been busy at Film City shooting for an ad for a kitchen cleaner. Then back in office to dub for the Khana Khazana shows. On my table I can see the latest releases in the small book category: Chai Naasta, Mirch Mazaa, Simple Home Baking, Say Cheese, Pickles, Chutneys and More, Dal Roti (new version), Desi Sabziyan (new version)…you can get them online too from shop.sanjeevkapoor.com . For a dekho, try these recipes from the leaves of these books: Chilled Lemon Cheesecake, Chilli Garlic Noodles, Zesty Lemon Cake….

Back to the recording studio post lunch.

Sanjeev Kapoor.

Merry Christmas, Stories in recipes

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas! May the season bring for you the perfect recipe of good health with wealth, prosperity and wisdom. Like each menu is made of a composition of different dishes, may the menu of your coming year be filled with exciting and fulfilling moments.

Menu planning for a chef is an entirely different story. We know the clientele but we really do not know them personally (with a few exceptions of the regular patrons). So we try to include dishes that have a story or a background with the hope that at least some of them will identify with it. Take the case of Lalla Mussa Dal which is on the TYC menu. It is a hot favourite.

There is an interesting story behind how this dal came into being. Pre independence when my parents used to stay in Pakistan they used to often travel from Lahore to Karachi. The first station that the train halted in the morning was called Lalla Mussa. This place was famous for its delicious food and specially the dal. My father, who was a complete foodie, replicated the dal at home and we all simply loved it. So when I was planning the menu for The Yellow Chilli I said to myself that this dal should be included in the menu. It was indeed a wise decision. In fact we are doing this dal for our guests today (a day of meetings for the channel) along with Dum Paneer Methi Bhurji, Nizami Tarkari Biryani and Kerala Parantha. Starting with Shammi Kabab and Fried Colocassia and ending the meal with Mango Phirni.

So till the week ends and a new one begins, have a party!

Sanjeev Kapoor