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Soups and stews are my comfort food. Chickpeas are a big part of my healing treatment. When Leo makes this chickpea stew, I’m in a happy place. What else is in here? Cilantro topper, onions, green peas, potatoes, lentils, tomatoes, carrots, bell peppers, spinach. Served with a side of roasted brussel sprouts!

Signing Off,



Leo took things to a whole new level with his cooking.

He cooked a whole tilapia fish, thai style. That means it was a bit sweet, a bit sour, and bursting with flavours that you can smell and taste.

Here it is as a steamed broth style. Have I mentioned before how much I love cilantro? There was no shortage of it in this dish.


And here it is as a fried sweet and sour style (which might be called Escabeche in the Philippines).


Signing off,

I open the fridge door and see:
– kidney beans
– homemade salsa from the wonderful Kinseys
– cilantro

And then THE UNNAMED SALAD was born!!! It was yum!
Nothing else was necessary, the salsa packed a nice punch already.

Nice random experiment. =)


I visited Bangalore, India in January 2010. My Auntie Suma lives in Bangalore, and for several days her and her family took in my boyfriend (Leo) and I and fed our happy tummies with traditional Indian home cooking.

I don’t think Leo and I have ever been so content, from breakfast to lunch to dinner and even snacks in between.

One morning, we woke up and were served breakfast that was a simple fried egg, red rice dosa and cilantro chutney. If I remember correctly, it was followed up with some ghee and honey, oh yum!
Cilantro is one of my favorite ingredients, so you can guess how the conversation went:

“oh my goodness, is that cilantro I taste in this chutney?”
“why yes it is!”
“give me the recipe, woman”

Ok fine, it didn’t quite go that way, and I never did get the recipe before I left India. But from that meal onwards, I vowed that I would re-create that amazing chutney back at home.

So I received a letter from my aunt recently. I am going to write her back and ask for her recipe. In the meantime, I searched online to see if there was a recipe that I could try out. I landed on this one from TLC, because I had every ingredient in my kitchen already, which made it an easy choice.

Source: TLC,

Ingredients – serves 2-4
– cilantro leaves, 1 cup
– green onions, 1/2 cup chopped
– hot green chili peppers, 1-2 chopped (seeds removed)
**handle peppers with care, do not touch eyes!**
– ginger, 2 tablespoons chopped
– garlic, 2 cloves peeled
– vegetable oil, 2 tablespoons
– lime juice, 2 tablespoons
– ground cumin, 1/4 teaspoon
– OPTIONAL: salt, 1/4 teaspoon
– OPTIONAL: sugar, 1/4 teaspoon

– food processor or magic bullet, with a steel blade

Into the food processor/magic bullet goes the green onions, chili peppers, ginger, garlic. Run for 10-15 seconds.
Pause and add in the cilantro, oil, lime juice, salt, sugar and cumin. Resume until consistency is smooth.

Interim Cilantro Chutney, COMPLETE! Thanks TLC!

I am eternally grateful to Auntie Suma for exposing me to lovely ingredients and letting me observe in her kitchen.
Once I get the recipe from her, I’ll share with you all the true South Indian cilantro chutney that I tasted that one fine morning.



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