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fruit

“I’m a man of simple tastes. I’m always satisfied with the best.”
Oscar Wilde

When the Tropical Collection from Chumbak comes knocking at your door, how  can you not fall in love with it? It’s fresh, it’s tropical, it’s everything you can celebrate spring with, a line you can usher summer in with as well! It’s an inspiring line, and immediately nudged me to do something fun. Take a look….

I played with the collection endlessly. It brings alive the child in you. You can’t take us Indians out of the our beloved tropics {for long at least}and you can’t take tropical out of India, so the collection is a sure win. I love the crisp, colourful feel, the energy it shares, the vibrancy it spills. The collection is inspired by tropical elements like palm leaves, pineapples, flamingos and the like.Here’s what I was inspired to do – Strawberry Pineapple Smoothies & Watermelon Kiwi Gooseberry Fruit BowlWhen we were young, my dad scooped or rather balled out watermelons and musk melons on our birthdays, then served the fruit chilled in fruit bowls. For some reason, just looking at the collection took me right back there, and before I knew it I was carving a fruit bowl. It’s the funnest thing to do for a pool party, kids birthdays, an evening pick me up in summer, or an anytime fresh healthy snack.I used kiwi stars, halved gooseberries and watermelon balls. I thought I’d throw in strawberry hearts too but forgot the in the fridge. Gah! Summer will see stone fruit galore, so the fun will double. You could do a stone fruit and berry inspired bowl. Or maybe set a watermelon granita in the melon bowl, freeze, slice and serve! No dearth of ideas when your life is flooded with inspiration.

Chumbak had a #spotthepineapple fun campaign to launch the collection. How can you be tropical and not have pineapple? So I figured I’d do a pineapple strawberry smoothie too. I freeze both strawberries and pineapple chunks, so this smoothie is the easiest thing ever. Throw in a cup of each, a cup or two of water, some sweetener, a dash of lime juice into the blender. Whirrrrrrrr it up and you’re good to go.That’s what the coming summer is going to ask for. Quick fresh foods that will keep the spirit light and happy. See how beautifully they paired with the Chumbak Tropical in the light of the afternoon setting sun? Such pretty hues that go so beautifully with the bougainvillea too. Same colours, tropical feel, and I am all set! There’s plenty of choice…

With a range of cushion covers that explode in bright colours, I think this is the best time for a summer makeover! Vibrant, vibrant, vibrant is all I think! Pineapples, flamingoes, elephants, flowers, geometric patterns {♥♥♥}, I want to redo my place! Oh and the sweet little owl too stepped out from a smitten golden ex Diwali into a rustic rainbow coloured creature. Can you imagine that the ullu {owl in hindi} went tropical too? I fell in love with this little fellow, toes and all!The other thing I really liked are the cookie jars. Spacious, clean lines, good quality airtight jars, and beautifully patterned, the counter tops will never be the same again. Even though I am not a gold person, I really like the golden cookie jar too. It fits in so well with the rest. And of course there is PLENTY MORE to the collection. I just picked a few.My all time favourite is of course the palm leaf pattern line. That has my name written all over it. It is fresh, understated, almost like each piece has been hand painted. The teacups are a generous size and stand tall. The pitcher is a winner and I would LOVE for it to sit on my counter. It pours well, it’s easy to clean and is an ideal size for milk or juice. Heck, it even doubles up as a stunning flower vase! It’s lovely to begin the day with for breakfast. Quick granola and fruit parfaits, omelette, toast, a glug of milk from the jug, coffeeeeeee … the leaf pattern is my kind of pattern. For salads too. The interesting bit is that the leaf pattern fits in to every time of the day, every meal too. From a crisp beginning in the morning for breakfast, to a soothing, lilting sun-downer feel, with calming, soothing hues. 

Even the coordinated leaf platters are darling. I just find the leaf pattern very very refreshing, something anyone would love to own, serve on, put out for guests, hang on their wall as part of a   plate collection. I shot with it a lot as you might notice. You can see I shot it the most. With flowers {poppies} for breakfast, with milk for breakfast too, with onion flowers just like that, then with the Strawberry Pineapple Smoothies & Watermelon Kiwi Gooseberry Fruit Bowl . That’s how versatile and handy it is. The great thing is that it pairs with almost every colour and meal. I’m thinking chilled lemonade through summer!

Strawberry Pineapple Smoothies & Watermelon Kiwi Gooseberry Fruit Bowl
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Strawberry Pineapple Smoothies, and a Watermelon Kiwi Gooseberry Fruit Bowl are quick, inspired, no cook, tropical fruit based recipes for summer! Inspired by the Tropical Collection from Chumbak.
Servings Prep Time
3-4 people 15 minutes
Servings Prep Time
3-4 people 15 minutes
Strawberry Pineapple Smoothies & Watermelon Kiwi Gooseberry Fruit Bowl
BigOven - Save recipe or add to grocery list
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Print Recipe
Strawberry Pineapple Smoothies, and a Watermelon Kiwi Gooseberry Fruit Bowl are quick, inspired, no cook, tropical fruit based recipes for summer! Inspired by the Tropical Collection from Chumbak.
Servings Prep Time
3-4 people 15 minutes
Servings Prep Time
3-4 people 15 minutes
Ingredients
Strawberry Pineapple Smoothies
Watermelon Kiwi Gooseberry Fruit Bowl
Servings: people
Instructions
Strawberry Pineapple Smoothies
  1. Place all ingredients in jar of blender and process until smooth. taste and adjust seasoning adding more sugar if required.
  2. Garnish with slices of fresh strawberries.
Watermelon Kiwi Gooseberry Fruit Bowl
  1. With a melon baller, scoop out balls of watermelon. gently remove any remaining flesh to take a bowl out of the skin. Carve the edges with a sharp fruit knife if you like.
  2. Peel and slice the kiwi. Stamp out stars with a small cookie cutter.
  3. Halve the cape gooseberries.
  4. Toss them all and put into the watermelon bowl. Chill. Scatter fresh mint over it. Serve chilled.
Note
  1. Run the left over watermelon and kiwi in a blender to make watermelon juice. Add a dash of honey, fresh lime and rock salt. Serve chilled.
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“The oat is the Horatio Alger of cereals, which progressed, if not from rags to riches, at least from weed to health food.”
Waverley Root

Date Walnut Orange Flapjacks … squares of goodness that come together in minutes. Not sure why, but ever since I began making granola again {read every Sunday}, I’ve had flapjacks on my mind. It’s a very strange thought as it crept in without prior notice, and yesterday for some reason that’s all I wanted to bake. Every time I got up to bake cookies, I pulled out the bag of oats. Guess these were meant to be. And so was this naughtiness that crept into my frames…Little Bambi, our newest little family member who we adopted recently, had an absolute field day. She loves photobombing whenever I try and shoot. You might see here here on PAB now and then!What are flapjacks you might ask. Well  ‘flapjack, muesli bar, cereal bar, or granola bar is a sweet tray-baked oat bar made from rolled oats, butter, brown sugar and golden syrup‘ and looks like this fits in quite well with my whole grain breakfast granola sort of a theme. I guess I could have just added some granola I made this morning into a bowl, tossed it in with some other stuff, pushed it together, let it set and made granola bars.But my granola is very precious these days. It’s much in demand in parfaits so I figured it would be a shame to use it so easily  cheaply. Then again the net is overflowing with recipes of flapjack and this recipe from Food52  won me over. The ease of the recipe, the beauty of ingredients, the pantry staples all made it seem so simple.Too simple I might add. You might have caught how easy these were to make on my instastories on my Instagram handle. In any case, this is the easiest ‘stir the wet mix into dry’ procedure. And it tasted drop dead delicious with ‘toffee’ good flavours, a sweetness which soothes the soul, and a load of oats, walnuts, sunflower seeds! Oh and a burst of orange flavour!Too much of a good thing and a new way to use quick cooking oats.Ever since I began using jumbo oats in my granola, the regular bag of quick cooking oats just sits and stares at me. No longer I guess. This is another fantastic way to use quick cooking oats . I adapted the recipe to use things that I had on hand so my flapjacks had walnuts and dates. Also the zest of an orange as it was just sitting on the counter and added freshness to the otherwise monochrome palette.

Date Walnut Orange Flapjacks
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Buttery & nutty with a burst of orange, sweetly comforting and quite indulgent, these Date Walnut Orange Flapjacks are going to be showing up quite often. A recipe minimally adapted from one @food52 , it comes together in a matter of minutes.
Servings Prep Time
16 squares 5 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
16 squares 5 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Date Walnut Orange Flapjacks
BigOven - Save recipe or add to grocery list
Yum
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Buttery & nutty with a burst of orange, sweetly comforting and quite indulgent, these Date Walnut Orange Flapjacks are going to be showing up quite often. A recipe minimally adapted from one @food52 , it comes together in a matter of minutes.
Servings Prep Time
16 squares 5 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Servings Prep Time
16 squares 5 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Ingredients
Wet mix
Dry Mix
Servings: squares
Instructions
  1. Line a 8 X 8" square tin with parchment. Preheat the oven to 180C.
  2. Place the butter, brown sugar and honey in a heatproof bowl and microwave for a minute until the butter has melted. Whisk well until you get a toffee like mixture.
  3. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, add all the remaining ingredients and stir to mix.
  4. Pour over the toffee mixture and stir well to mix.Transfer to prepared tin, pat down into place with an offset spatula or butter knife.
  5. Bake for about 25-30 minutes until light golden brown on the edges but still soft in the centre.
  6. Cool completely before cutting into squares
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“Fussing over food was important. It gave a shape to the day: breakfast, lunch, dinner; beginning, middle, end.”
Robert Hellenga

Fruits with Cream & Granola Parfaits … couldn’t be a better way to begin the morning. All this while I thought granola was just one of the best ways to start the day, so I made that a lot. It was simple. Granola + Milk + fruit = done! Then along came cream, an idea crossed my mind and breakfast got a makeover, a fun and colourful one at that. The parfait is showing up as dessert at home too now, made with just cream, no dahi! Folk who know me, know of my love for dairy. Everything and anything dairy hits a home run for me, and that speaks pretty much for everyone at home.The neat little tetrapacks of Mother Dairy cream  have changed the way I work in the kitchen, cooked and baked. The ease, the taste, the quality stepped up what I do in the kitchen in exciting ways. I am sure if you are like me, and love to cook and bake, your pantry’ll never be without this handy staple. It literally finds its way into everything I make, especially sweet!So when Mother Dairy Creams asked if I’d like to take do a few recipes for #CreamOfAllFood and taking over their instagram handle for a week, I could hardly say no. There was nothing I’d have liked to do better! Mother Dairy products have been a part of my growing up years, bringing up the kids, my kitchen, my culinary life. This was just going to be an extension of what I enjoy doing most – experimenting in the kitchen.A ton of ideas tumbled out of my head. I settled for this one first – Fruits with Cream & Granola Parfaits because I love the idea of layered desserts, cakes etc. Because the family had just returned from NYC and one of them described a delicious parfait they had for breakfast there. Because I had a sackful of granola at home that someone had sent as a gift. Because I love fruit in food, and lastly, I love playing with my food recipes…

One thing led to another. Some twitter conversations later, before I knew it, I was baking granola for the parfaits. I have always been charmed by doing things from scratch, granola being one of them. I find it difficult to understand why you wouldn’t bake something so simple at home? Please try baking some once, and you’ll do it over and over again. It makes life simple, you feel great, the kids get addicted to it, you can use it for energy bars, for breakfast…and for dessert too. Throw some into smoothies, scatter it over fruit salad or ice cream, or just munch on some as a snack. It is so customisable too. That done, a nice big batch smiled at me as I thought of putting the parfait together. It’s the simplest thing to do. As things go, I love the edge of subtle indulgence these Fruits with Cream & Granola Parfaits offer. There is little guilt for two reasons. No, make that three! Maybe more!!Cream is good fat. The granola is 100% wholegrain, glutenfree and home made. Last but not the least,the parfait has a generous portion of seasonal fresh fruit in there. And so many more reasons to enjoy this. Dahi/yogurt, honey, chia seeds … thing good gut bacteria and protein, think natural sweetener, think superfoods that are also called seeds of life. Above all, think S I M P L E !!So wait no further. I played out the recipe on Instastories the Mother Dairy Instagram handle that I’m taking over this week. This was #InstaCookingClass #1. Catch me there, or on the Mother Dairy FaceBook page later this week . Love to hear if you liked it {or not}, what recipes you might like to see in future, and what you’d like to make with the #CreamOfAllFood!

Fruits with Cream & Granola Parfaits
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Dessert for breakfast! Fruits with Cream & Granola Parfaits where wholegrain homemade granola meets creamy goodness and colourful seasonal fruit.
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
0 minutes 15-30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
0 minutes 15-30 minutes
Fruits with Cream & Granola Parfaits
BigOven - Save recipe or add to grocery list
Yum
Print Recipe
Dessert for breakfast! Fruits with Cream & Granola Parfaits where wholegrain homemade granola meets creamy goodness and colourful seasonal fruit.
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
0 minutes 15-30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 5 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
0 minutes 15-30 minutes
Ingredients
Fruits with Cream & Granola Parfaits
Homemade Granola
Servings: servings
Instructions
Fruits with Cream & Granola Parfaits
  1. Whisk the cream &and yogurt until smooth.
  2. Add honey. Whisk again.
  3. Stir in chia seeds. Leave to stand for a while.
  4. Layer... Granola, cream mix, honey, fruit... and& repeat!
  5. Tip: Use a piping bag or ziploc to pipe in the cream mix to make it neat.
  6. Tip: Use any seasonal fruit you enjoy eg Banana Strawberry Parfait, Black Forest Parfait, Banoffee Parfait.
  7. Tip: Great idea to make a parfait bar and get kids to 'build their own' colourful parfaits
  8. Tip: Use more cream, less yogurt and turn this into a dessert with the cream.mix, fruit & nuts!!
Easiest Homemade Granola
  1. Preheat the oven to 160C. Line a large baking dish with parchment.
  2. Stir together all the dry ingredients EXCEPT the dried cranberries and chocolate chips in a large bowl. {Tip: Use the mixer bowl from The Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer as it is convenient to use and very big}.
  3. Whisk the honey into the olive oil.
  4. Pour the wet mix over the dry mix, and give it all a good stir.
  5. Turn it into the prepared pan, press down lightly, and bake for approximately 45 minutes until light golden brown. Stir 2-3 times while baking.
  6. Once baked, stir in the dried cranberries while still hot, and chocolate chips once cool.
  7. Store in an airtight container.
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