Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Designing a cake

Last weekend I was asked to design and make a cake for a friend's 60th birthday. This friends's hobbies include tennis, golf, cards, and cars. He also founded an investment club in our town. Well, it was a challenge to create a cake to support all his hobbies and without making it cluttered. I thoroughly enjoyed the process of custom designing the cake based on the person's hobbies and interests in mind. The birthday boy's favorite carrot cake is wrapped with fondant icing and all the decorations are made with gum past icing. Here are some images to share with you all.



Tennis

golf


Cards are made with gum paste


Race cars(only non-edible item on the cake)


And investment club





For more memorable centerpieces, tablescapes, and recipes (including vegetarian, gluten free and vegan recipes),please check out my books, Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen and Trader Joe's Simply Indian at my website komalinunna.com.



Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Touring the orchard

This is the time of year that every fruit tree in my orchard is bearing fruit. I can say that the fall season is fruit heaven in the garden.

Pomegranate



Candy striped figs



Cherimoya




Persimmons getting ready for fall




Entire orchard is situated on the slope





Bananas



Guavas



Tangerines


 Sutsuma tangerines are getting ready for winter


Blank CDs are hanging on jujubee trees to protect the fruit from the birds. 


Apples


More apples


Red apples


I couldn't help but capture a picture of the garden from the top of the slope.



Macadamia nuts hanging from the trees at the bottom


Seedless pomegranates



For more memorable centerpieces, tablescapes, and recipes (including vegetarian, gluten free and vegan recipes),please check out my books, Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen and Trader Joe's Simply Indian at my website komalinunna.com.



Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Chai and garden tour with the friends

My favorite way to relax is sit in the garden and drink chai with friends. This morning I invited a few of my friends for chai after yoga.  My favorite place to entertain is always right next to the kitchen garden. The friends who came over are avid gardeners. After a good workout, it was nice to talk about plants while sipping chai. It is always nice to exchange ideas about the hobby of gardening that we all are very passionate about.
The menu was very simple, olive oil cake, Greek yogurt with pomegranate-berry-ginger sauce and masala chai.



Olive oil cake is so light and delicious. Perfect bite with chai.














After chai, it was time for a garden tour. Some of them have not seen my chicken coop. It was nice to share my chicken stories.


For more memorable centerpieces, tablescapes, and recipes (including vegetarian, gluten free and vegan recipes),please check out my books, Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen and Trader Joe's Simply Indian at my website komalinunna.com.




Thursday, July 30, 2015

Container gardening in the patio

I do a lot of container gardening in the patio. If you are a regular reader of my blog, you know how much I depend on coleus for lasting color in the patio. Every  year, I experiment with different color combinations of coleus. Those vibrant colored coleus never fail to satisfy me year after year. 





I love this color combination of plants in the following container. Persian shield, variegated geranium, Japanese painted fern, creeping jenny and silver falls.







Two different colored shrimp plants with Persian shield







For more memorable centerpieces, tablescapes, and recipes (including vegetarian, gluten free and vegan recipes),please check out my books, Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen and Trader Joe's Simply Indian at my website komalinunna.com.



Monday, July 20, 2015

Kitchen garden tour in July

For past two days, it has been raining in LA, which is very unusual. Here in California, we are in the middle of drought, desperate for rain. When we see rain, we feel like celebrating with a happy dance. My kitchen garden is very happy soaking up all rain drops. Here is what is growing in my kitchen garden.

Sun gold tomato. It is my favorite salad tomato. If you never tried growing this tomato, give it a try. I am sure you won't be disappointed. 




Indian red spinach

Indian sorrel (gongura), very popular South Indian green vegetable. I make chutney and curries with it



I do pause and enjoy the view often. I love the view from here.






Ridge gourd. It tastes more like zucchini


Bitter melon. Very good for people with diabetes.


Bitter melon greens are popular greens to stir fry in Philippine.



Bulls-blood beets. This particular variety of beets are primarily grown for leaves to eat in salads and stirfrys.



Rainbow swiss chard. I stir fry leaves with olive oil and garlic. Delicious!


Eggplants


Indian beans



Opo squash


With all the vegetables there are many herbs I grow in the kitchen garden.

Dill


Ivy gourd(tindora) vine. An another favorite vegetable of mine


Komali's kitchen garden is not complete without myriad of chilies. I like spicy food. 


Variegated sage


Through out the kitchen garden, many terracotta pots filled with herbs


Sweet potato vine. I learned very recently that you can eat sweet potato greens. 


Super green kale


Curry leaf plant. Curry leaf is a herb widely used in South Indian  cusine.


Tamarind tree. I don't know whether I will be able to get tamarind out of this tree, but I am planning to use tamarind greens in dals and curries.


Hope you enjoyed touring my kitchen garden. There are many more herbs and vegetables share in future posts. 

For more memorable centerpieces, tablescapes, and recipes (including vegetarian, gluten free and vegan recipes),please check out my books, Entertaining From an Ethnic Indian Kitchen and Trader Joe's Simply Indian at my website komalinunna.com.