Sunny Cooler

2 cups buttermilk                                       4 Tblsp sugar

2 cups fresh orange juice                                    1 tsp orange essence

1.     Put yogurt, orange juice, sugar and essence in blender.

2.     Cover and blend on high about 2 minutes, until frothy.

3.     Pour into tall glasses.

                                                      Serves 4

Frothy Ginger Ale

2 cups yogurt                                             2 cups ginger ale

2 Tblsp grape jelly

1.     Chill yogurt and ginger ale.

2.     Combine all ingredients in blender.

3.     Cover and blend on high until smooth and frothy.  Serve in individual glasses.

                                                         Serves 4

Apricot Velvet

2 cups buttermilk                                                2 Tblsp sugar

1 cup fresh peaches, chopped                    freshly grated nutmeg

1 � cups apricot nectar

1.     Put buttermilk, peaches, apricot nectar and sugar in blender.

2.     Blend on high, about 3 minutes until smooth.

3.     Pour into glasses and sprinkle with grated nutmeg.

                                                              Serves 4

Nutritious Fig Milk

4 cups lowfat milk                                               4 Tblsp molasses

8 dry figs chopped small

1.     Combine all ingredients in a pan and bring to a boil.

2.     Lower heat and let simmer till figs are soft and chewy.  Approximately 10-15 minutes.  Serve hot in bowls.

This milk is good at breakfast or any time in winter.

                                                      Serves 4

Chutneys and Relishes

          Gujarati meals are said to be incomplete without chutney.  Chutney is a sauce or relish of East Indian origin made fresh with fruits herbs, coconut, spices and condiments.  It can have a sweet and sour taste or a sour and salty taste.  It is easten along with meals and served twice or more if desired with other dishes.  Chutneys made with coconut and coriander leaves, are a must with savories and snacks.  Savories like samosas and dhokalas are dipped in the chutneys before being eaten; each enhancing the taste of the other when combined.

          The taste of chutneys varies from house-to-house.  Some prefer it very hot and spicy, others like it mild and sour.  It can be made according to personal preferences and tastes.  A chutney stimulates the taste buds top greater activity, thus aiding the digestion of food.  In India, preserved chutneys are called pickles and can be preserved without refrigeration for one year.

          Thus, what mustard and relish are to Westerners, chutney and pickles are to an Indian.

Date Sauce

(Khajur ni chutney) 

15-20 pitted dates                                                Salt to taste

� cup raisins                                              1 tsp cumin seeds

� cup brown sugar                                              2 Tblsp lemon juice

1 tsp paprika                                              � tsp sanchal (black salt)

1 cup water

1.     In a saucepan, bring water to a boil.  Add dates, raisins and brown sugar.  Cook until the dates are soft.  Set aside to cool.

2.     In a blender blend the cooled dates/raisins mixture and remaining ingredients.  Add more water to acquire desired consistency (thickness like ketchup.)

3.     Serve in bowl; with any meal or snack.

                                                    Serves 4-6

Sweet Fruit Chutney

1 large tart apple                                                 1 tsp garam masala

2 cups dried apricots                                 1 tsp cumin seeds

8 large strawberries                                  1 tsp paprika

2 Tblsp golden raisins                               3 Tblsp minced ginger root

1 � cups brown sugar                               1 � tsp salt

2 cups cider vinegar

1.     Peel apple.  Hull; strawberries.

2.     Cut strawberries, apple and apricots into small pieces.

3.     Mix with remaining ingredients in heavy saucepan.  Boil gently for approximately 1 hour until the chutney has a thick consistency like that of honey.

                                                 Yields approximately 3 cups

Spiced Yogurt

(Jira valu dahi)

1 cup yogurt                                                        � tsp paprika

1 tsp cumin seeds rosted                                     1 tsp salt

  and ground                                               Few parsley leaves for garnish

1.     Whip yogurt.

2.     Add remaining ingredients and stir well.

3.     Chill before serving.

4.     Garnish with chopped parsley.

                                                        Serves 4-6

Mint Chutney

(Phudina ni chutney)

1 cup firmly packed                                   1 tsp salt.

  Fresh mint leaves                                              1 inch piece ginger root, scraped

� cup raw peanuts                                              � cup water

3 Tblsp grated coconut,                                      � green chilli (optional)

  fresh or desiccated                                  3 tsp lemon juice

1.     Mix all ingredients in food processor or blender to a smooth consistency of a sauce.

                                                      Yields 1 cup

Fresh Coriander Chutney

(Kothmiri ni chutney)

1 cup firmly packed, chopped coriander leaves and steams

� cup freshly grated coconut (or desiccated coconut)

1 Tblsp finely chopped green chillies (optional)

2 tsp salt

1 Tblsp scraped and finely chopped ginger root

� cup water

1.     In a blender, grind, coriander leaves, chillies, salt, coconut, ginger and lemon juice to fine paste, adding water as necessary to facilitate grinding.

If chutney is not to be used immediately, it can be stored in an airtight glass jar in the refrigerator for about one week.

                                                    Yields 1 cup

Fresh Coconut Chutney

(Nariyal ni chutney)

8 Tblsp chana dal, roasted                        1 small piece fresh ginger root

1 � cups grated coconut                                     1 cup water (or a little more)

  (fresh is preferable)                                 � tsp mustard seeds

2 tsp salt                                                     � tsp udad dal

4 tsp lemon juice                                        5-6 curry leaves

4-6 green hot peppers                                1 Tblsp oil

1.     Roast dal over medium heat, stirring constantly for about 10-15 minutes.  Then soak in water for 2-3 hours.

2.     In a blender, grind the soaked dal, coconut, salt, lemon juice, green peppers, ginger and water to a coarse mixture.  Transfer to a bowl.

3.     Heat oil in a small pan.  Add mustard seeds and udad dal.  When seeds pop and dal becomes pink, add curry leaves.

4.     Add oil mixture to the ground coconut and stir.  Serve at room temperature. Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight glass jar.

                                                   Yields 2 cups

Sweet �N Sour Raisin Chutney

1 cup black raisins                                              1 tsp sanchal (black salt)

5 dried pitted prunes                                  2 tsp lemon juice

� tsp ground ginger                                   1 cup water

1 tsp roasted ground cumin

1.     In a saucepan boil water, raisins and prunes.  Cook until soft.

2.     Put in blender adding remaining ingredients.  Blend to a thick consistency.

3.     Put in bowl and serve with any meal or snack.

                                          Serves 4-6

Helpful Household Hints

        Peel of used lemon, dipped in salt is useful for polishing copper vessels.

        Food odors in the refrigerator can be removed by putting peels of used lemon in it.

        To remove bad odor and damp small from clothes, before ironing, spray a few drops of Eau be cologne on the ironing table.  The clothes will be fragrant with the cologne due to the heat of the iron.

        Eau de Cologne helps to clean stains on mirrors and glass in photo frames, etc.

        For an easy flow of ketchup put a straw into the bottle.  The air gets at the bottom of the bottle facilitating the flow of ketchup.

        Old toothbrushes are very useful to lean combs cups, jug handles, jewelry and those tiny places which cannot be reached easily.

        To clean up the mess of tiny bits of broken glass on the floor, take some cotton balls and moisten it.  You will find it easy to clean the mess.

        To find the end of a transparent tape, press a tiny button on to the end after using it.

        To remove stains from burnt pots and pans, take a wet piece of cloth dusted with salt and rub.

        Sharpen a blunt pair of scissors by cutting sandpaper several times.

        Ink stains can be removed from cloths by sprinkling salt on the stains and then rubbing with a piece of lemon or lime.

        Milk is ideal for removing ink stains.

        Stains of oil or butter on clothes can be removed by sprinkling some bicarbonate of soda on the stain.  Let it stand for some time.  Then remove the stain with any brush.

        To remove unpleasant smells from dishwashing sink, rinse with warm water and a little vinegar.

        A small peel of orange or lemon thrown in the pot of tea gives a refreshing fragrance to the tea.

        If by mistake, too much salt is put in soups, vegetables or dals, drop in 2 small peeled potatoes.  They will absorb the extra salt.

        To make cucumber more digestible, soak them in salt water for about one hour.  Drain and gently squeeze out excess liquid.  This makes the cucumbers absorb the dressing more easily, too.

        Add 10-15 black peppercorns in the spice bottle to lock in its freshness.

        Five drops of lemon juice in a cup of regular cream when beaten with an electric beater makes the cream fluffy and light.

        Cardamom pods (skin) without seeds, instead of being discarded, can be plaed in a canister of tea leaves.  Every time one uses the tea leaves, it enhances the flavor of the tea and gives it a wonderful aroma.

        Before squeezing the juice of a lemon, put it in hot water for some time.  Then squeeze it.  It yields twice as much juice.

        Dried curry leaves (limbado) placed at the bottom of the rice container will ward off insects, etc.  from the rice.

        To stop the salt from becoming moist, put two of blotting paper (ink paper) at the bottom of the jar before storing the salt.

        To keep the water hot in a hot water bottle for a longer time, add a little salt to the water.

        Add a pinch of salt to a bottle of fresh milk to keep it for a longer time.

        To combat extreme fatigue and tiredness, drink a glass of cold water mixed with 1 teaspoon of sugar.

        One teaspoonful of fresh basil juice with honey is also good during the rainy season when people seem to suffer from loss of appetite, fever, cough and colds.

        During the winter, I teaspoon of a mixture of fresh ginger juice, fresh lemon juice an d honey taken in the morning gives warmth, appetite and energy and wards off colds.  This mixture can be prepared a head and stored in the refrigerator.  (Proportion will be 20 teaspoons ginger juice, 5 teaspoons of lemon juice and 5 teaspoons of honey.  Mix all the three ingredients together and store in a glass jar).

        Adults or children who complain about loss of appetite and indigestion should be given 21 leaves of fresh basil and 5 black peppercorns to chew.  They should not drink water for 15 minutes after that.

        If one suffers from less flow of urine, � teaspoon of Bishop�s Weed (Ajowan) and � teaspoon of jaggery (gur) mixed together and taken four times a day is effective.

        For colic dysentery a glass of buttermilk with one teaspoon of ginger powder taken every day is very effective.

        Heat one teaspoonful of fresh lemon juice.  When it is lukewarm, pour it straight into your throat without letting it touch your tongue.  It is excellent for people suffering from vertigo and dizziness.

        For any kind of muscular pain or swelling use cold compress.

        This remedy is very effective for soothing burns of any kind.  Make a paste of yogurt and chick-pea flour (besan) and apply it on the burnt parts or the body.

        To check an oncoming sneeze, press a finger in the middle of the upper lip. The sneeze will subside.

        Gas in the stomach can be released by lining the navel with a drop of castor oil, then press a good pinch of hing (asafetida) on the navel.

        To counteract excessive body heat, boil about five glasses of water with a tablespoon of fennel seeds (sauf).  When it cools, drink this liquid two or three times a day.

        To get quick relief from throat trouble and chest congestion due to a cold, add a few leaves of basil to boiling water and simmer for five minutes.  Strain and drink this hot, like tea.

        For a fair and clear complexion, take 2 tablespoons milk, add 1 teaspoon of chick-pea flour (besan) and a pinch of turmeric powder.  Make a paste and apply to face and hands instead of soap.  Wash off with cold water.  It works miracles.

        Before washing your hair, rub a mixture of the juice of 2 lemons mixed with 2 teaspoons of coconut oil in your hair.  Then shampoo.  Your hair will become soft, shiny and lustrous.

        Top test real saffron, put a few strands of saffron in sulfuric acid.  If the color changes from black to red it is genuine.  If it changes to green then it is not genuine.


Indian equivalents of English Terms:

English                                    Gujarati                                  Hindi                   

Aniseed                                   Sowa                                       Valaiti Saunf

Asafoetida                               Hing                                        Hing

Basil                                        Damaro                                   Tulsi

Bishop�s weed                         Ajama                                     Ajowan

Black cumin                                     Kalu jiru                                 Kalunji, Kalonji

  (Onion seeds)

Black pepper                          kala Mari                                Kali Mirch

Capsicums or                          Lal Marcha                                      Lal Mirch


Caraway                                 Shah Jiru                                Shia or Siya Jira

Cardamom                              Elachi                                               Elaichi

Cinnamon                               Tuj Dalchini                                     Dalchini

Cloves                                     Lavang                                    Laung

Coriander seeds                     Dhan a                                    Dhania

Coriander leaves                    Kothmiri                                 Dhania

Cumin                                     Jiru                                         Jira

Curry Leaf                              Limbdo                                    Curry Patta

Dill                                          Suwa                                       Soya

Fennel                                     Variali                                     Saunf

Fenugreek                              Methi                                                Methi

Ginger                                     Adu                                         Adrak

Mango powder                       Amchur                                   Amchur

Mint                                        Phudina                                   Pudina

Mustard                                  Rai                                          Rai

Nutmeg                                   Jaiphal                                    Jaiphal

Poppyseed                               khusKhus                                Kaskash

Saffron                                    Kesar                                                Zaffran, Kesar

Indian Cassta Lignea             Tamala Patra                         Tejpat

Turmeric                                 Haldar                                     Haldi

Vanilla                                    Vanilla                                    Vanilla

A Guide to Pronouncing Indian Words

          The following is a partial; explanation of the pronunciation of Indian words to aid you in using the names in this book.

          Vowels: Each vowel is divided into long and short.  The long vowels are indicated by a straight line above the letter, as in a, I, u. Words are pronounced evenly without accenting a particular syllable.  Vowel sounds are similar to those in Italian.

               Vowel                                 English equivalent

                   A                                             up or sum

                   A                                             father

                   I                                               dim

                   I                                               deem

                   U                                             tooth

                   U                                             moon

                   r- is considered a semi-vowel.  It is spoken slightly

                         rolled, as in the Italian signore.

Some Suggested Menus

Every day Menu

Monday                                                      Indian Bread

Split and Shelled Black                             Spiced Basmati Rice

Udal Beans                                                 Fresh Coriander Chutney

Zucchini and Peas with Coriander            Kohlrabi Salad


Spiced Mung Beans                                   Spiced Basmati Rice

Cauliflower and Potato Vegetable            Mint Chutney

Fried Chapatis                                           Tomato Raita


Mung, Udad and Chana Dal                     Spinach Rice

Cabbage with Yogurt                                Sweet Fruit Chutney

Indian Bread                                              Mixed Vegetable Salad


Black-eyed Beans                                                Spiced Basmati Rice

Vegetables in Yogurt                                 Fresh Coriander Chutney

Indian Bread                                              Cuumber-apple Salad


Split Pigeon Peas No. 1                                       Spiced Basmati Rice

Fried Okra with Yogurt                                      Sweet fruit Chutney

Fried Chapati                                            Crunchy Carrot Salad


Five Lentil Mix                                          Apple Rice

Country Green Beans                                Mint Chutney

Indian Puffed Bread                                  Potato Raita


Chana Tuver Dal                                       Fried Chapati

Spiced Dried Potato                                  Spiced Basmati Rice

Green Peppers with                                   Fresh Coriander Chutney

Chick-pea Flour                                        Spiced Yogurt

Parties and Feasts Menu

No. 1

Masala Lentils                                           Coconut coriander Raita

Baked Eggplant                                         Fried Chapati or Steam

Fried Cauliflower                                                Pita Bread

Yellow Split Pea Balls                               Spiced Basmati Rice

Simple Halva                                              Lassi

Date Sauce                                                 Toasted Papads

No. 2

Mung Beans with Yogurt                                    Spongy Dal Cake

Spiced Dried Potatoes                               Fresh Coriander Chutney

Snow Peas                                                 Indian Puffed Bread

Saffron Flavored Sweet                                      Vegetable Pullav

Yogurt Dish                                                         Yogurt Soup

No. 3

Split Lentil Dal                                           Mint Chutney

Vegetable Koorma                                              North Indian Bread

Fried Zucchini                                           Spiced Basmati Rice

Potato Rolls                                                         Coconut Fizz

Spongy Cheese Balls in Syrup

No. 4

Mung-Dal Delight                                               Mint Chutney

Bananas with Chick-pea flour                            Date Sauce

Spiced Zucchini with Tomatoes                          Indian Puffed Bread

Deep Fried Filled Pastries                         Spiced Basmati Rice

Orange Fudge or coconut Fudge

No. 5

Split Pigeon Peas No. 2                                       Cucumber Raita

Fried Okra with yogurt                                       Apple Rice

Sweet �N Sour Vegetable                          Deep fried Papads

Dal Ball with Yougurt                               Orange Julius

Chapati Stuffed with Sweet Dal

English Equivalents of a few Indian Terms

Amchur                dried mango powder

Atta                      whole wheat flour

Badam                 Almonds

Bateta                            potatoes

Besan                            Chick-pea or gram flour

Bharta                 pureed vegetable

Bhat                     cooked rice

Chapati                flat bread

Chaval                 cooked rice

Chhenna              Indian cottage cheese

Chokha                uncooked rice

Dahi                     yogurt, curd

Dal                       split pulses

Funsi                    string beans or green beans

Gajar                             carrot

Garam Masala    mixture of spices used for vegetables and dals

Ghee                    clarified butter

Gobi                     cabbage

Green Masala     mixture of fresh spices used for

                                       Vegetables and dals (see notes on ingredients)

Gulab-jal             rose water

Halwo, Halvo       sweet dish

Jal                        water

Jambu                  milk balls

Kacha kela          unripe banana, plantain

Karela                  bitter melon

Kesar                             saffron

Khichadi              rice and lentils cooked together

Kismish                raisins, sultana

Kobi                     cabbage

Korma                 vegetables cooked in yogurt and coconut sauce

Limbu                  lime, lemon

Maida                            white flour

Makai                            corn

Masala                 mixture of spices (see note on ingredients)

Milk Masala                 Mixture of spices for milk and sweet dishes

Muth                    brown colored beans like mung beans

Nan                      flat bread of North India

Nimbu                  lime, lemon

Paka kela            ripe banana

Panch Puran                 mixture of five seed spices

                                      (see not on ingredients)

Paneer                 Indian cottage cheese

Pani                     water

Paratha                flat bread fried in ghee

Phulkobi              cauliflower

Pista                     pistachio

Poha                    beaten rice, pressed rice

Pullav, pulav        rice cooked in ghee and mixed with

                                      Vegetable and spices

Puri                      deep-fried puffed bread

Raita                    vegetables or fruits in yogurt

Rasgulla              paneer balls cooked in sugar syrup

Rawa                             semolina, cream of wheat

Rotli, Roti            flat bread

Sanchal                black salt

Sev                       vermicelli made from chick-pea flour (besan)   

                                      Used as snack and bought from

                                      Indian groceries

Shaak                            vegetables

Suji                      semolina, cream of wheat

Tarkari                vegetables

Tea Masala                   mixture of spices used for Indian Tea

Getting to Know Pramoda Chitrabhanu

          Born in Gujarat State into a devout Jain family, Pramoda was brought up from the age of five in Bombay, where she studied in all English-speaking schools.  A quiet ad serious child, even in her primary school years, she preferred to stay home and sing Jain chants and tea herself Jain Sanskrit stanzas and prayers, instead of socializing in the world.  At 13, when many Indian families were arranging marriages for their daughters, Pramoda�s family saw her genuine spiritual quest and allowed her to turn down the many proposals which came.  As she grew in beauty and accomplishment, for she excelled in singing and playing the sitar, was fluent in English, and received her B. A. in psychology from Jai Hind Collage Bombay University, more proposals poured in.  But always that longing for the spiritual life gave her the foresight and the courage to resist all temptations.

          When Pramoda and her parents and sister met Gurudev, they were so moved that in the ensuing years, they never missed any of his talks.  Together they went to him to study the meaning and practice of Jain philosophy meditation and ancient mantras.  After graduating from collage, pramoda continued to commit herself to the spiritual path and to helping Gurudev with his work at the Divine Knowledge Society.  During the seven years in which she was his students in India, a deep and pure  love grew between them, but was never uttered or expressed.  Their decision to marry in 1971 was not only a fulfillment of a personal vision, but it was also and especially a union for a higher purpose-to share the message of reverence for all life with the universal family of seekers from all parts of the globe.  According to Gurudev, two people unite on the planet because �they are already united in the life of the spirit, as two eyes but one vision, two ears but one sound, two minds but one dream.�

          Pramoda has shared in that dream and purpose in numerous ways, which she is glad to share with us; as a committed individual with a deep spiritual quest; as one who practices, lives, and teachers the vegetarian way of life; as one who ha learned how to maintain her balance and equanimity through understanding and living the role as Gurudev�s wife and as mother to two young sons; and teacher of Jain chants, shocks, and songs.

          Pramoda was lauded in the New York Tumes By Craig Claiborne who wrote: �Like many other fine cooks, Mrs. Citrabhanu was born in a household where the kitchen was a special place, and her mother was and is a first-rate and enthusiastic cook�. her family has practiced Gujarati cooking for generations� There is no end to her inventiveness.� As an expert in nutrition and vegetarian cooking, Pramoda brings more to her cooking classes than the nutritional balance and delicious results.  One gets a real feeling of harmony and well-being.  The vibrations of one who lives in reverence and respect for all living beings impart love and health to her meals.

          She expresses in her cooking her deep awareness of the purpose of eating.  As Gurudeve explains,�The foundation of health is in adrashuddhi, the purity of food.  When you take innocent food, food which is free from the vibrations of violence and bloodshed, a miracle happens is your life.  The body, which is a house for the mind, becomes an instrument for healthy-mindedness.  According to that pure food, your thoughts will flowers and blossom.  That itself gives you a push and takes you in the direction of your deepest quest.�

          The positive effect of this conscious choice of food is far-reaching.  It becomes a turning point in one�s life.  Little by little, you transforms all your body cells into health and vigor.  In fact, you feel the meaning of the word �vegetarian,� which came from the root word �fight,� meaning vigor! You feel joy in life, for you know that you are not causing pain to your flour-footed brothers and sisters or to those who fly and swim either! Mind and body feel cleansed, and work in harmony.  The prospects for world peace improve, for an Gurudev has observed, �Anyone who could not hear to harm an animal would never think to take up arms and shoot his fellow human beings.�

          With this understanding in mind, we can see and appreciate the integral part which Pramoda Chitrabhanu contributes to furthering our understanding, in both its practical and spiritual aspects, of the meaningfulness of every moment of our existence.