Tagged: autumn

Rose and cardamom scented Truffle Brownies

Our garden is currently a study in schizophrenic behaviour. While it should be responding to autumn and preparing for a nice long sleep, it is frantic with activity.  The strawberry plant is turning out fruit like a plant possessed. The hibiscus has decided that now is the time to burst into riotous scarlet explosion. (I’m deeply thankful for this since no other flower reminds me of home more. We used to have several of these plants in constant bloom all around my building.) The Indian summer of this region has everything to do with this madness. The biggest surprise are the Gerbera daisies, which we thought had breathed their last gasp end of July. The plant had all but disappeared, but it then surprised us by bursting out in a brave show of health. It has begun throwing out several blooms a week.

The air is charged with a cold streak,  the kind that makes you reach for a jacket even though you look outside your window and see brilliant sunshine. Perhaps, it is because that sunshine is slow to show up and low in its bearings, its fiery gold reminiscent of early sunsets and late sun rises. Nevertheless it makes you want for the substantial things. The fresh fruits that were more than enough as dessert in their raw, unadorned form only recently simply won’t do now. I find myself reaching for the ghee or some spices to cook them into warm things. Those are the nature of dishes we’re starting to crave; the oozing unctousness of a spiced pie, the savoury headiness of a steaming bean stew, the joyous rich comfort of a perfect chocolate brownie.

I have a pan in my kitchen that I use specifically for brownies. It is a basic thing, made of cooking grade aluminium. We bought it on an impulse at a sale because of the fact that it came with a lid, making it a perfect cook-and-store utensil. This pan has proven its worth to me more than anything else in the kitchen. It has lost its sheen and has taken on scratches of careless cutting over the years, but it still bakes fantastic bread puddings and cakes. It excels at its primary purpose, rich brownies with a crisp-ish edge.
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Lamb Shepherd’s Pie

My weekend was cold in more ways than one. Not only has the weather moved back into coolness but I was also working up a blizzard of all kinds of notes and books for my exam (the result of which, in case any of you are wondering, is known only to God and a few people at the grading agency, I certainly didn’t know which way that boat sailed). While Amey shivered in khaki shorts (heavy wishful thinking on his part; it wasn’t warm in the shade) and grappled with the problem of ‘backfill on site’, I wrestled with the concrete mix required to build a dam; warmed with a nice hot cocoa. Not the most fun way to spend what seemed to be a super gorgeous weekend in the sun. But we were inside, being cold; not in the sun. Story of our lives. Why has all my young life been spent taking exams? Isn’t it ridiculous irony that you can’t enjoy youth (and I’m stretching the blasted definition of that word to the extreme in application, after all you are as young as you feel) when you are young? I mean, shucks!!

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