Add a pinch of salt to burnt milk while it is still hot.  This will remove the scorched taste.


Spongy Cheese Balls in Syrup



2 quarts milk                                         4 cups water

Juice of 1 lemon                                                ½ tsp rose essence

2 cups sugar         


1.     Bring milk to a boil, lower heat and add lemon juice top curdle the milk. Milk should separate into cheese and whey.  If not, add the juice of another ½ lemon.

2.     Collect whey (the liquid can be used in soups) and tie cheese in a cheese cloth. Keep tied for 6 to 8 hours until all the liquid has drained out.

3.     When mixture is completely dry, knead cheese until it is very smooth (about 5-7 minutes).  Form into 18-20 balls.

4.     In large pot, boil sugar and water.  Turn down heat and simmer.

5.     Add balls to this syrup and continue simmering for 30 minutes.  Do not cover.

6.     Turn off Heat.  Add rose essence and chill.  Best made the day before.

                                                   Yields 18-20


          If syrup is left over use it as a base for lemonade or other drinks.



Rasgulla Royale


15 rasgullas

1 quart vanilla ice cream

1 cup nectarine segments (cut into pieces)


1.     With a knife slice rasgullas into halves.  Stuff each half with pieces of nectarine. 

2.     Arrange stuffed rasgullas halves in shallow glass bowl.

3.     Whip vanilla ice cream.  Pour whipped ice cream over rasgullas in the bowl.

4.     Arrange the remaining pieces of nectarine on ice cream.

5.     Cover the bowl; with plaits wrap and put it in freer for 24 hours.

6.     Serve in individual bowls.  (This dessert can be set in individual bowls.)

Variation: Instead of Nectarine, stuff the rasgulla halves with chopped nuts and grated chocolate.  Garnish the ice cream with grated chocolate.

                                                              Serves 6-8


Chic-Choc Delite


½ cup water                                                 1 quart vanilla ice cream

1 tsp instant coffee                                                2 Tblsp grated chocolate

38 ginger cookies                                              3 Tblsp chopped walnuts (opt.)



6 Tblsp drinking                                            1 Tblsp instant coffee

  chocolate powder                                              1 ½ Tblsp corn flour

2 Tblsp cocoa powder                                    2 cups cold milk


1.     Mix all ingredients for sauce thoroughly in pan.  On low heat, cook until mixture thickens, stirring occasionally.

2.     Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

3.     In a small bowl, mix water and coffee.  Dip cookies in this mixture, one at a time.

4.     In a round glass dish, arrange a layer of dipped cookies.

5.     Pour a layer of chocolate sauce over cookies to cover thinly.

6.     Repeat steps 4 and 5 until all the cookies and sauce has been used.

7.     Beat ice cream and pour over prepared dish.  Decorate with grated chocolate and walnuts.

8.     Place in freezer 5-6 hours or until set.

9.     Slice Chic-Choc Delite and serve.

                                                      Serves 6-8


Date and Rice Krispy Crunchies


3 Tblsp butter                                                2 cups Rice Krispies

4 Tblsp sugar                                                 ½ tsp vanilla essence

3 Tblsp milk                                                   6 Tblsp carob powder

1 ½ cups (6 oz.) pitted dates                     3 Tblsp desiccated coconut


1.     Mix butter, Sugar, milk and dates in large saucepan and cook over low heat for 10 minutes.  Stir well.

2.     Remove from heat and add Rice Krispies, vanilla essence and carob powder. Mix thoroughly.

3.     Press mixture into a baking tray and sprinkle coconut over top.  Allow to set hard.

4.     When set and cool into diamond shapes.

                                       Yields 10 to 12 pieces.


Chocolate Chippers


½ cup shortening                                         1 tsp vanilla essence

½ cup granulated sugar                              ¾ tsp salt

¼ cup milk                                                 ½ tsp baking soda

1 cup sifted all-purpose flour                     1 cup (6 oz.) semi-sweet

  (or ½ cup all-purpose +                                      chocolate chips

  ½ cup whole wheat flour)                    1 cup chopped nuts


1.     Cream shortening, sugar, milk and vanilla together till light and fluffy.

2.     Sift together flour, salt, banking soda.  Stir into creamed mixture and mix well.  Add chocolate and nuts.

3.     Drop by spoonful, 2 inches apart, onto a greased cookie sheet.

4.     Bake in moderate oven 3750F for 10-12 minutes.  Remove from cookie sheet immediately.

                                                             Yields 12-14 chippers


Fudge Brownies


12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate morsels

14 ounces sweetened condensed milk

8 ½ ounces chocolate wafers, finely crushed

1 cup chopped walnuts


1.     Place the chocolate in double boiler and melt it stirring constantly until smooth.

2.     Add condensed milk, crushed chocolate wafers and half a cup of walnuts.  Stir well to mix thoroughly.

3.     Pour the fudge mixture into a non-stick 8-inch square pan and press fudge until even.

4.     Press the remaining half cup of walnuts on top of fudge brownies.

5.     Let stand at room temperature until firm.  Cut into 2-inch squares

                                             Yields 16 pieces


Frozen Fruit Ice Cream


8 oz. Packet of cream cheese

¼ cup maple syrup

1 ½ cu whipped cream

½ cup chopped dates

½ cup chopped walnuts

1 ½ cups chopped fruits (pineapple strawberries and peaches)


1.     Beat cream cheese and maple syrup together with fork.

2.     Add whipped cream and heat again to a smooth consistency.

3.     Add remaining ingredients and mix well.  Set in a shallow dish or bowl and place in freezer.

4.     Serve in individual bowls when set, approximately 5-6 hours.

                                                               Serves 4-6


Avocado Pudding


1 large ripe avocado                                   ¼ tsp saffron powder

6 Tblsp yogurt                                                ½ tsp ground cardamom

8 tsp sugar                                                 ½ up grated apples

¼ tsp grated nutmeg                                    1 Tblsp slivered pistachio nuts


1.     Peel avocado and remove pit.

2.     Puree in a blender avocado, yogurt, sugar and spices.

3.     Empty puree into a serving bowl.  Gently add grated apples, mix and chill.

4.     4 Serve in individual bowls.  Garnish with slivered pistachio nuts.

                                                         Serves 4-6


Avocado is actually a fruit, but is generally used as a vegetable in salads and dips.  To test for ripeness, take the fruit and press with your fingers for softness.  It should be soft tos the touch.  A cut avocado can be refrigerated for several days, if the pit is left in.


Fruits with Walnuts and Cream


2 cups cream

1 medium banana, cut into cubes

1 medium apple, cut into cubes

1 medium pear, cut into cubes

15 seedless green grapes, sliced

15 seedless rad grapes, sliced

1 cup nectarine segments

½ tsp ground nutmeg

½ cup chopped walnuts

¼ cup golden raisins

½ cup sugar


1.     Place all ingredients in a large serving bowl.

2.     Mix well and chill.

3.     Serve in individual bowls.

                                                   Serves 4-6



Coconut Dreams


2 oz. Cocoa butter                                                1 cup unsweetened

¼ cup butter or margarine                       desiccated coconut

1/3 cup brown sugar                              1 cup flour

1 tsp vanilla essence                                    1 tsp banking soda


1.     Preheat oven to 3000F.

2.     Melt cocoa butter over low heat,. Stirring until melted.

3.     Cream butter with a spoon and mix with cocoa butter.  Add sugar, mix thoroughly.  Add coconut and vanilla essence, mix well.

4.     Sift flour and baking soda, gradually adding to butter.  Mix well with your hand to form smooth dough.

5.     Shape into small balls (the size of marbles).

6.     Place them on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes till lightly browned.

                                      Yields approximately 30 dreams


Cocoa butter is the vegetable fat that’s extracted when chocolate liquor is pressed under high pressure.  This butter has a distinctive melting quality.



Spice Cookies


¾ cup (1 ½ sticks) butter                                      1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon

1 cup brown sugar                                       1 ½ tsp ground cardamom

Rind of 1 lemon, grated                                      ¼ tsp ground cloves

2 ¼ cups wheat flour                              1 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda                                         2 Tblsp milk


1.     Cream butter till soft.  Add sugar and mix well.  Add lemon rind.

2.     Sift together flour, baking soda and spices.  Add sifted ingredients gradually to butter and sugar.  Mix well.

3.     Add milk and knead for 5 minutes until it becomes a smooth dough.

4.     Flour a board and rolling pin.  Roll out dough to ¼ inch thickness.

5.     Cut cookies with cookie cutter.  Transfer cookies onto a greased cookie sheet.

6.     Bake at 3500F  for about 10 minutes (watch so the bottom does not burn).

7.     Do the same with the remaining dough.

                                     Yields 3 dozen cookies


Pineapple Cupcakes


½ cup shortening                                         2 ½ tsp baking powder

1 1/3 cups sifted all-purpose flour            1 cup milk

1 cup sugar                                                           1 tsp pineapple essence


1.     Place shortening in a mixing bowl.  Sift in dry ingredients.  Add ½ cup milk.  Mix until flour is moistened.

2.     Beat for 2 minutes at low speed with an electric mixer.  Add remaining milk and pineapple essence to mixture and beat one minute longer.

3.     Place the paper cups in muffin pans and fill cups half cull with mixture.

4.     Bake at 3750F for 18-20 minutes.

                                                    Yields 12-14 cupcakes


 While making a cake, warm the mixing bowl to speed the creaming process.



Raisin Nut Cake


2 cups water                                                          1 tsp baking soda

1 cup black raisins                                               ½ tsp salt

½ cup butter or margarine                      ½ tsp cinnamon

1 cup unbleached flour                               ½ tsp nutmeg

¾ cup wheat flour                                        1 cup chopped nuts

1 cup brown sugar


1.     In a saucepan, bring water and raisins to a boil.  Simmer for 10 minutes.  Add butter and set aside to cool.

2.     Sift together flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.

3.     Add sifted ingredients to the raisin mixture and mix thoroughly.  Stir in nuts.

4.     Pour mixture into a grased 9-inch a square pan.

5.     Bake at 3500F for 40 minutes.

                                                          Serves 4-6


Chocolate Applesauce Cake

(eggless and butterless)


2 cups flour                                                           1 ½ cups sugar

3 Tblsp cocoa or carob powder                           2 tsp vanilla essence

1 ½ tsp baking soda                                2 cups applesauce

½ tsp salt                                                    1 ½ cups semi-sweet

½ cup oil                                                       chocolate bits


1.     Stir together flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt.

2.     In a bowl, cream together, oil and sugar until light and fluffy.  Blend in vanilla. Add flour mixture and applesauce.  Stir vigorously and mix well.

3.     Pour into a greased 9” x 13” x 2” pan. Sprinkle with chocolate bits and chopped walnuts.

4.     Bake in a 3500F oven for 35-40 minutes.  Cool in pan.

                                                           Yields 12 to 14 pieces


If a cake fails to rise and is heavy in texture, slice and shallow fry in hot butter, roll in powdered sugar and serve.



Strawberry Cake


1 can condensed milk                                ½ cup water

2 level tsp baking powder                           1 cup chopped strawberries

1 level tsp soda bicarbonate                           2 tsp strawberry essence

1 cup self-rising flour                              1 9-inch diameter cake pan

½ cup melted butter


1.     Butter cake pan and dust with flour, set aside.

2.     Preheat oven to 4000F.

3.     Sift flour, baking powder and soda bicarbonate.  Mix remaining ingredients together and stir well with a wooden spoon.  Pour into the cake pan.

4.     Bake for 15 minutes and lower oven temperature to 2500F and bake another 15 minutes or until done.

5.     Cool cake, ice and decorate.

                                                     Serves 4-6


Strawberry Ice-Cream Cake


1 ½ cups crushed butter biscuits

1/3 cup melted salted butter

1 quart strawberry ice cream (taken out half hour ahead)

½ cup sour cream

½ cup water

4 Tblsp agar-agar flakes

2 Tblsp powdered sugar

Few slices strawberries

Whipped cream


1.     Mix butter and crushed biscuits together.

2.     Press mixture into a 9-inch round cake pan.  Put in freezer for half an hour.

3.     Put strawberry iee-cream in a bowl.

4.     Boil water and let simmer.  Add agar-agar flakes slowly and stir until all the flakes are dissolved.  Add this agar-agar mixture, sour cream and sugar to soft ice-cream and mix thoroughly.  Put this mixture over warm water until it becomes a smooth sauce and the agar-agar is dissolved thoroughly.

5.     Take out crust from freezer and pour ice-cream mixture over crust.  Put cake in refrigerator to set.

6.     When set, arrange strawberry slices and whipped cream over cake.  Cut into desired slices and serve.

                                                       Serves 6-8


Crunchy Square Treat


1 cup creamy peanut butter

½ cup brown sugar

½ cup corn syrup

3 cups Rice Crispies

6 oz. Semi-sweet chocolate morsels (optional)

2 tsp vanilla essence


1.     In a pan, heat peanut butter, sugart and corn syrup on low heat until dissolved thoroughly.  Approximately 5 minutes.

2.     Turn off heat, add rice rispy, chocolate morsels and vanilla essence.  Mix well.

3.     Empty into a large cake pan, pack evenly.

4.     Refrigerate for 2-3 hours.  Cut into desired squares.

                                       Yields 50-60 one-inch squares


Indian Cone-Shaped Ice Cream



1 cans condensed milk (400 gms.)           2 Tblsp milk masala

7 oz. Heavy cream (200 gms.)                    ¼ tsp ground cardamom

2 ½ cups milk                                         ¼ tsp ground nutmeg

                                                                   ½ tsp saffron powder


1.     Bring milk to a boil and add to milk, masala, cardamom, nutmeg and saffron.

2.     Remove from heat and add condensed milk and cream, and allow it to cool.

3.     Fill cone-moulds with this mixture.

4.     Arrange them upright in the freezer and chill for 8 to 10 hours.

5.     When set, take each cone and wash quickly in water.  The Kulfi will slide out easily.  Arrange in a shallow dish.

6.     Cut into ¼” slices and serve.

                                                  Yields: 12 Kulfis

Note: The cone-shaped mould can be bought at Indian Grocery Stores, or Kulfi can      be set in any other container or mould with a lid.



Drinks and Beverages


          With the growing knowledge of the ill effects of alcoholic drinks o the liver and heart, every hostess in faced with the problems of wheat to serve her family and guests as drinks.  To solve her problem, the connoisseurs of the world have come up with bright, new ideas if fruit juice mixtures and spice combinations to substitute alcoholic drinks with non-alcoholic beverages.

          India known for its and tropical climate, offers varieties of delicious fruits and vegetables which provide a wide range of choices in each season.  Commonly called “Jal-pan,” the drinks and beverages are a common sight for tourists.  Favorite drinks of many Indians are water, called the thirst quencher, fresh sugarcane juice and tea, called “chai” which acts as a stimulant.  Be it a railway station or the road, in the airport or in a theatre house, one always sees small booths of tea, cold drinks and snacks.  But today fresh juice centers have opened everywhere.

          Fresh fruit juices can serve as a prelude to many formal meals and parties.  There is another kind of drink served as an appetizer in Indian wedding feasts, called “jaljeera” (cumin water). Tea is usually taken at breakfast and again in the late afternoon.  Often it is served at lunch or dinner, if requested.

          The recipes given in this section are simple, yet sensational.  The results will amaze you and your family and friends.  After attempting some of the recipes try out your imagination and create your own concoction.  You may be surprised to find out that you can also produce something extraordinary.



Tropical Fruit Shake


2 cups pineapple juice                               1 cup grape juice

2 cups orange juice                               6 scoops vanilla ice-cream

1 cup apple juice                                        ½ cup apple cut into tiny pieces


1.     Mix all the juices together and chill thoroughly.

2.     Before serving, whip the juices with the vanilla ice-cream in a blender, till it becomes frothy and light.

3.     Serve in individual glasses topped with tiny pieces of apples.

                                              Yields 6 large glasses


Buttermilk Shake



½ cup buttermilk                      OR              ½ cups buttermilk

½ cup water                                                          ½ cup water

2 Tblsp maple syrup                              2 Tblsp maple syrup

¼ tsp rosewater                                          ¼ tsp ground cardamom

                                                                   5-6 saffron strands (soaked in

                                                                     water for a few minutes)


1.     Mix all ingredients in a blender. Serve in tall glass.

An excellent summer refresher!

                                              Yields one large glass


Gur and Lemon Drink

(Gur pani)


2 lemons                                                     8 ice cubes

8 Tblsp gur                                                 1 tsp fresh ginger juice

4 cups water


1.     Squeeze the lemons.

2.     In a pot, soak the gur in water and let stand for 2 hours.

3.     Add lemon juice and ginger juice to soaked gur and mix well until all the gur is dissolved.

4.     Strain over ice cubes directly into glasses and serve.  If it is not sweet enough,. Add more gur.


Banana-Guava Milkshake


1 medium ripe banana                                    4 tsp sugar

1 ripe guava                                                         8 cups chilled milk

1 Tblsp lemon juice                              1 cup water


1.     Blend all ingredients in electric blender.

2.     Strain through a coarse strainer to remove guava seeds.

3.     Chill and serve in small glasses.

                                                      Serves 6-8



Orange Julius


1 ½ cups frozen orange juice                     Few drops vanilla essence

1 ½ cups milk                                         Ice cubes (optional)

1 ½ cups water


1.     Blend all ingredients in electric blender.

2.     Serve in tall glasses.

                                                        Serves 4-6


Summer’s Surprise


2 cups orange juice                               1 bottle plain soda

2 cups apple juice                                          1 med. Apple cut small

2 cups pineapple juice                               A few mint leaves


1.     Mix all juices together and chill.

2.     Before serving, pour some plain soda in an individual glass.  Fill with chilled juice.

3.     Spoon apple pieces and mint leaves into the glass.

4.     Do the same for other glasses.

                                           Yields 12 small glasses.


Squeeze lemon juice in ice-trays and freeze.  Flavor your soft drink by adding a couple of lemon ice cubes.


Mango Shake


1 ½ cups chilled mango pulp (bought from Indian grocery)

4 ½ cups chilled milk

6 tsp brown sugar

6 drops rose essence


1.     Put all ingredients in liquidizer and blend thoroughly.

2.     Serve in individual glasses.

                                                 Serves 6 tall glasses.


Coconut Fizz

- cool summer drink -


4 cups chilled buttermilk                               1 tsp ineapple essence

2 cups cold water                                                 ½ cup freshly grated coconut

12 tsp sugar (or any sweetener)                      (or desiccated coconut)

½ cup chopped pineapple


1.     Mix buttermilk and water together in a pot.

2.     In a blender make a paste of sugar,. Coconut, pineapple and essence.  To facilitate blending, add a little buttermilk at the beginning of the blending process.

3.     Add paste to the buttermilk and water mixture.  Mix well.

4.     Whip the mixture with a hand beater or an electric beater until; frothy.

5.     Serve Coconut Fizz in individual glasses with forth.

                                                 Serves 6-8


Spiced Buttermilk


3 cups buttermilk                                         2 tsp roasted cumin seed powder

2 cups water                                                          Salt to taste


1.     Mix all ingredients in blender.

2.     Serve in individual glasses along with food or as a drink by itself.

                                             Serves 6


Indian Milk Drink



4 cups skim milk                                         Spices

2 cups water                                                 30 almonds

12 tsp brown sugar                                       4 tsp fennel seeds

                                                                   4 tsp poppy seeds

                                                                   1 tsp grounds white pepper

                                                                   2 tsp ground cardamom


1.     Grind all spices into a paste (a coffee grinder does this well.  You may need 2 tsp water or more to facilitate grinding).

2.     In a blender mix together milk, water, sugar and paste.  Chill in refrigerator.

3.     Serve in small individual glasses.

                                        Yields 12 small glasses.


Spiced Indian Tea

(Masala chai)


3 cups milk                                                 6 tsp loose black tea leaves

3 cups water                                                          Sugar or any sweetener to taste

1 ½ tsp tea masala


1.     Bring milk, water and tea masala to a boil.  Add sugar and simmer for 5 minutes.

2.     Add tea leaves and brew for 2 minutes.

3.     Turn off heat and cover immediately.  Let tea seep for a few minutes, stirring once.  Tea is ready when it is orange in color.

4.     Strain in a tea kettle and serve piping hot.

                                             Yields 6 cups


Strawberry Fruit Shake


2 cups plain lowfat yougurt                           4 Tblsp brown sugar

1 cup lowfat milk                                        2 cups sliced strawberries


1.     Place ingredients in blender and blend until smooth, 1-2 minutes.

2.     Serve immediately or chill,. Whip once just before serving.

                                                       Serves 4-6


Spiced Milk

(Masala Dudh)


4 cups milk                                                 4 Tblsp sugar

4 Tblsp milk masala                                     2 Tblsp slivered almonds


1.     In a pan bring to a boil; milk, spices and sugar.

2.     Remove from heat and cool immediately by stirring to avoid forming film on the milk.

3.     Put in refrigerator and chill completely.  Serve in glasses topped with almonds.

                                                Yields 4-6 glasses.


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 ½ 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

½ cup raisins                                               1 tsp cumin seeds

½ cup brown sugar                                       2 Tblsp lemon juice

1 tsp paprika                                             ¼ 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 ½ cups brown sugar                              1 ½ 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                                                         ½ 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

½ cup raw peanuts                                              ½ cup water

3 Tblsp grated coconut,                                  ½ 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

½ 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

¼ 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 ½ cups grated coconut                                   1 cup water (or a little more)

  (fresh is preferable)                              ½ tsp mustard seeds

2 tsp salt                                                     ½ 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

½ 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, ¼ teaspoon of Bishop’s Weed (Ajowan) and ¼ 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.