Category Archives: Food

Herbilicious – Mint

The Purple Frog is a huge mint fan. Those leaves are magic. From Mojitos to Mint tea, from After Eight to Mint Yogurt there is nothing that is not cherished here.

However, to use mint as an ingredient,

The Purple Frog thinks of it as something to be had a fling with – few leaves and stems here and there, a pinch of dried & crushed coarse powder or at maximum, a bunch to be mixed with something neutralizing like yogurt. Try a full-fledged affair with it in a recipe, and you need one more ingredient to balance its strong flavor that leans towards bitterness.

Yet, nothing stops The Purple Frog from using mint the right way and stretching imagination to come up with more ways to keep it around.


The Purple Frog had mint tea that instead of fresh mint straight from the planter, was made of dried, coarsely crushed leaves added at the very start with water, before all the other ingredients were added. Oh the flavor – how well it fitted with the entire set of ingredients of regular milk tea.

Another recipe is Labneh

Where dried, coarse, crushed mint leaves make for a great addition without disturbing the original personality of the dish. Well, if you are not from the middle-eastern or the Mediterranean region of our world, labneh might not be a part of your staple diet. However, if you’re a yogurt lover, it ought to become.

Sharing the recipe from the start

It makes for a great spread on flavourful multi-grain crackers.

A jar of yogurt hung for a day or more till it is consistent enough to look like a moist ball of cheese. Lightly knead it with a bit of salt and olive oil. At this stage add dried, crushed mint leaves and there you go,

Herbilicious labneh

Roll into tiny balls to add to salads or simply beat it mildly to turn into a lovely mint cheese-like spread or make one big ball to be sliced like mozzarella that can replace the cheese in a cold cheese & tomato sandwich for a low-calorie version.

For another low-calorie, flavourful recipe using mint

Put together grated cucumber, a bunch of fresh mint (crushed using mortar & pestle or blitzed in a food processor), fresh yogurt, a pinch of salt, pepper & sugar and you have a flavourful Indian Raita to go with spicy veg or even, vegan biryani ( a soy chunk, tofu based recipe that The Purple Frog will share later).

Talk Mint and

The options are innumerable. The Purple Frog will come back with some special ones that can add some pop to the arriving festive season.

Till Then, take a look at these

Things This Week

Dips & Sauces platter

To be able to accommodate two to three dips & sauces at one place…next it will go to the kiln and turn into a beautiful (hopefully) ceramic piece.

Mint-coloured mosaic work

Since the theme for this post is mint and this mosaic work is super recent here, the mint-coloured tesserae on this little folding table make for a mention.

The Purple Frog | Mosaic Table


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Accidental Discoveries

There is something very charming about the two words when put together, a sort of luster that they don’t exude in isolation. Well, that in itself is an accidental discovery.

So here at The Purple Frog, exploring and making bring along a lot many surprises and realizations, most of the nature that end up giving the heart a new angle to look at the same things. And the world is not the same place again.

So a lot of experimentation and dreaming and making has been happening here and some accidental discoveries that The Purple Frog would like to share with you, even though you may already know some…

  • Plants bloom well when simply placed next to other blooming flowering plants. An almost dead plant that The Purple Frog thought will need to be cleared soon, revived back to life in two days when placed next to two blooming rose bushes…and it is flourishing now, all by itself!
  • If you paint your favourite artwork or the mantra you swear by or just anything thoughtful at the back of your entrance door, opening the door every time someone rings the bell feels different. Try.

Plus, The Purple Frog thinks that it is a great fixed canvas in the house that can be played with all your life…

Here, it was a DIY effort. However, professional artists can do wonders with bringing your favourite painting or song or movie or person or even your gone-dog, to life.

The Purple Frog | Entrance & Cupboard Doors

  •  Instead of adding plain water or stock to your gravies, adding a tbsp. or two of any tetra-packed juice enhances the aroma without changing the taste.

The Purple Frog|Kitchen & Food

  •  Then, if you’re a coffee lover, little coffee powder on the moist finger and simply licking it once in a while gives that harmless high that coffee gives…
  •  And of course, last but not the least, threads are the new paints in the world here. And the revival of the art forms, crochet and embroidery that grandma sowed the seeds of, is happening here.

And since, she always said, be how the times are, instead of rugs and sheets, the objects are bags, belts and bikinis. So thread market like feather market is kinda disappointing. Guess more exploration is needed.

Well, not all accidental discoveries are happy surprises. Some slightly harsh ones that wilted the heart here were:

Iss duniya mein koi kisi ka nai hota…Mumbai hai bhai, sab apna apna dekho and kuch bhi ho, Tujhko chalna hoga, tujhko chalna hoga…lol

Here are some pictures of the work happening here. Wish you lots of inspiration and love to create and share.

P.S. The Purple Frog is getting serious about a marketplace venture. Let’s hope it is able to announce it and bring it out soon this year!

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Adorably Pretentious

There is a TV series called Ravinder’s Kitchen on TLC. Here you can see an Indian girl, Ravinder, donning bright colours and a thick British accent while cooking traditional recipes with a twist in a warmly modern kitchen.

The Purple Frog has heard and seen many ‘eclectic’ Indians express dislike for her by raising the brows, rolling the eyes and ending the conversation with, SO FAKE.

So many people that it is worth dedicating one blog post to her.

Disagree with them

Somehow, The Purple Frog has always enjoyed this kind of pretentious (it’s not fake) where there is desire, playfulness, vulnerability and most of all an effort to experiment and CREATE.

So what, if in her kitchen, she rarely names the ingredients in Hindi. It could be because her Punjabi name for that INDIAN ingredient is not the same in a Tamil kitchen. Languages just unify, it’s the thought that counts.

Then the thick accent is setting and playfulness, colours of spring in her attire are definitely talking Baisakhi  and the rest is her comfort with self.

Recipes in her kitchen

Well, her recipes inspired from the kitchens of every corner of India are exactly what she sounds like.

Kheer Crème Brulee, Saag Cornbread (makai roti) Ramekins, Rum Mango Lassi with fresh vanilla seeds from the pod (she calls it A Narcotic Milkshake…Lol), Amritsari Fish Pakodas made in Beer, Caramelised Onion & Roasted Garlic Naan, Curry Prawn Puff, Crab & Sweet Corn Samosa, Baked Fruit and Nut Dal Kachori, Mango Saffron Baapa Doi Cheesecake, Smoked Rose & Beetroot Raita, Passion Fruit Mousse with Pistachio & Mukhwas Chikki, Double Peanut Chocolate Barfi and more things like that.

She has clearly TRIED blending what’s inside her home where she lives with one culture and the temptations of the outside world where she operates with varied cultures.

Her love for the crackling sound of zeera from her mum’s kitchen and the saltiness of salmon from the setting she is living in shows her appreciation. She is brimming with life and is capable of noticing the finer things and passionate enough to fall in love with them.

Here’s to Ravinder

Who mentions her mum and her tricks 20 times in her shows…Lol and yet takes immense pleasure in teasing her by ruining her authentic recipes with what new, thrilling stuff she enjoyed and brought back to add when she stepped out of the house.

In her shows, you can often find her smirk and say, Mum would hate this but then this is MY kitchen ma…Lol.

To give you a glimpse of this chef and her work

The Purple Frog tried looking for videos over the internet but found nothing that was close to her real work… So here are four video clippings that were recorded from the TV recordings. Hope you see the brimming life here and try the recipes from her kitchen.


Thing This Week

Double Peanut Chocolate Barfi

If you see the clip above, tried that.

Till the last 5 minutes of bringing out the recipe, it was all going fine. The Purple Frog had painstakingly arranged for all the ingredients and those like dark chocolate and coffee instead of milk chocolate and sugar that would suit the taste buds here. But just when it was melting the chocolate, a wrong decision made in haste changed the course of this recipe…It is a sad, sad story anybody who takes risks in the kitchen would relate with…

So that day,

Arranged the primary ingredient as Ravinder said, Peanut Brittle, such a glam name for the Indian chikki or mungfali ki patti…Loved it.

Then she said, “Pop it in a blender and BLITZ it”… sounded like a pop number to which one can only shake the head and go wild.

Then chose to follow only some of her instructions that went like heat lots of butter, add milk, jaggery, icing sugar, peanut butter, the peanut brittle crumble, spread in a pan, add top layer of melted milk chocolate, let it cool and freeze for about 3 hours, cut in pieces and devour.

She was calling these the surefire way to put on weight for those who need to. The Purple Frog reminisced about a few such people who have always wanted to but had none to share with…

Then all was going fine in the kitchen. Due to lil butter, a tiny amount of jaggery and extra milk, the batter was runny. That also didn’t dampen the spirit here.

The Purple Frog |Playing with Peanut Brittle and Chocolate

And then,

When melting the chocolate with a bit of coffee powder was turning out fine but was taking time, without thinking of the consequences, added a Tbsp of hot water and in a fraction of a second it turned lumpy.

The heart sank.

The melting lacy dark chocolate with that lovely aroma of coffee turned into an ugly lump. Had not imagined such a fate of this recipe…Heartbroken, almost hatefully went about putting the SLOTHY BLOB in the batter. Trying and its disappointments are so hard to overcome…

Kitchen Trials

Spent some time staring at the ceiling and wondering if it was the coffee that mixed with water and ruined it or is it that chocolate can’t take hot water for thinning, it has to be milk…or adding coffee was a bad idea in the first place or….: (

To sort it.

The only way things in the kitchen can be sorted is by putting the stuff in the freezer. It is a truth The Purple Frog swears by.

So instead of the fridge (as told by the chef), here it was kept in the freezer. Even after two hours, it hadn’t started to freeze (which means a complete recipe mishap) and some got stuck to the finger badly.

And then, Lol…nothing better tasting has been licked off the fingers here…

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