Monthly Archives: April 2017

Nepali style chowmein

After momo, chowmein is one of the most popular dishes in Nepal. I have been cooking it for a while but getting the right texture and taste took me a while. Now I am happy with it so I am sharing the recipe here.

Ingredient

  • 1 pack cooked ready to eat Singaporean noodle (you can use any noodle as you like)
  • 200gm thigh fillets
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped Ginger
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped Garlic
  • 1 onion thinly sliced
  • 1 medium carrot thinly sliced
  • ¼ cabbage thinly sliced
  • ½ capsicum thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 tablespoon chili sauce
  • 1 tablespoon tomato sauce / ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp pepper powder(chili powder optional)
  • 1/2 cup spring onions chopped
  • Coriander to garnish
  • Salt as required

Method

  • Boil the thigh fillets for 10 minutes and let it cool. Slice it thinly.
  • Heat oil and add boiled chicken and cook until it is brown. Season with salt and pepper. Keep it aside

  • In the same pan, heat oil and add finely chopped ginger and finely chopped garlic. Then add sliced onion and sauté it for a couple of minutes until the onions turn translucent.

  • Now add cabbage, carrots, capsicum and cook for a few minutes. Do not overcook the vegetables.

  • Then add chili sauce, tomato ketchup, soy sauce and vinegar.

  • Add the cooked noodles and mix it well with the vegetables and the sauces.

  • Now add the cooked chicken, salt, pepper and spring onions and turn off the heat.

  • Serve hot and garish with coriander.

Take care,

from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

Chandragiri hill

When we were in Kathmandu this time, we didn’t get time to go out of valley but we still managed to go to a few places within the valley. One glorious sunny morning we started a trip to the newly opened Chandragiri Hill.

Located 16 km from Kathmandu, Chandragiri hill is in Thankot and it took us around 30 minutes to drive there. They have recently introduced cable car to the top of the hill making it good place for a family day out. We bought our tickets a few days in advance from Bhatbhateni supermarket so we didn’t have to queue up once we reached there.

When we reached the base of the hill, I was already very happy to see an amazing view of the surrounding mountains and hills. We quickly caught a cable car to the top. The ride is around two and a half kilometres long taking us around 9 minutes to reach the top.

When we reached on the top and came out into the open area, we were welcomed by the beautiful Himalayan range. The panoramic views of Kathmandu Valley and the Himalayan range from Annapurna to Everest makes you feel as if you were seeing the whole of Nepal from this hill. I am so glad we got there early in the morning because; the view from the top was worth it.

People used to trek for hours to get to the top of this hill to watch the same view which we were lucky enough to enjoy with the new cable car ride in just a few minutes.

On top of the hill there are restaurants, a kids’ play area, a resort, a multipurpose hall and shops as well.

Once we enjoyed the view of the beautiful landscape, we decided to walk further up to the temple of Lord Shiva, Bhaleshwor Mahadev.

We prayed to the god, went around the temple and then to the nearby restaurant to have our lunch.

It was Shivaratri that day so there was only vegetarian option on the menu. We all enjoyed the lunch and kids had a good time too.

After lunch we went to the other side of the hill which is where the kids’ play area is. I was so glad that they had thought things through and had so many different things for kids to enjoy including slides, rides, see-saw, climbing robes, swings etc.

Chhori and our niece spent more than an hour there and didn’t want to leave as they were having so much fun.

We all had a great time too with the whole family and it was definitely one of the best outing place to go near Kathmandu.

If you are looking for a good escape from the city and don’t have much time in Kathmandu, this day trip is highly recommended.

If you like to hike, you can still do so using the route from Matatirtha-Chandragiri- Chitlang. This hike takes you through forest and hills offering scenic views of Kathmandu valley and through Chitlang taking around 5-6 hours to complete the entire hike.

This much for today. I will come back with more posts from Nepal soon.

from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

Dal (lentil) fry

I have written a recipe about dal before but this one is slightly different as this is thicker and I have used different spices.

  • ½ cup red lentils
  • ½ cup  brown lentils
  • 1 pinch turmeric powder
  • 1 tablespoon ghee
  • 1 medium red onion finely chopped
  • ½ inch ginger crushed
  • 6 garlic cloves crushed
  • 2 dry red chilies
  • 1 teaspoon methi, crushed
  • 1 large tomato finely chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon red chilli powder
  • ½ teaspoon coriander powder
  • ¼ teaspoon garam masala powder
  • ½ to ⅔ cup water or add as required
  • salt as required
  • 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ inch cinnamon stick
  • 2 to 3 cloves
  • 2 green cardamoms
  • 1 bay leaf

Instructions

  • In a pressure cooker, pour all lentils and add 1 teaspoon salt, a pinch of turmeric powder and add 2 cups water.
  • Cook for 15 minutes on a low to medium flame.
  • When cooked, the lentils should be soft. Lightly mash and keep aside.
  • In a pan, heat 1 tablespoon ghee and add cumin seeds, cinnamon stick, cloves, cardamoms and bay leaf to the pan and sauté them till they crackle and become fragrant.

  • Add turmeric powder, ginger garlic and fry for a few minutes.
  • Now add the chopped onions and fry till the onions turn light golden brown.

  • Add chilli and methi and stir for a minute.
  • Add the chopped tomatoes; stir and sauté till the tomatoes soften.

  • Now add chilli powder, coriander powder, garam masala powder and mix with the rest of the onion-tomato masala.

  • Add the cooked dal and mix well.

  • Add water and stir very well and season with salt as required.

  • Simmer the dal on a low flame till the dal thickens a bit. Keep on stirring the dal at intervals so that it does not stick to the bottom of the pan.
  • When the dal is done, switch off the flame, add chopped coriander leaves .

Take care and have a great weekend.

from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

Chhori turns 2: the celebration party

We decided to have a party to celebrate Chhori’s birthday with our friends and family after puja. We started planning when we were here in Sydney with my in laws so we had a venue booked months in advance. I also found photographer via Facebook so they were booked for the day as well.

I am sure anyone who is trying to book an event from overseas goes through lots of frustrations when you can’t find the right vendor to execute your ideas. I had the same problem when we planned our wedding and it was no different this time.

We had no idea what was available in Nepal in terms of decoration so I bought everything I could think of from here and I am so glad I did. Because when we got there, I couldn’t get the things that we wanted.

As the venue and photographer were sorted, the next big thing was cake and decoration. I bought the Dora cake topper from here so we got the baker to do a cake with those. I was pretty happy with the cake.

We also ordered cupcakes which did not turn out as planned. The cupcake was not the pink colour we wanted and it was not decorated as we had explained but I guess we shouldn’t have set our expectation too high since everyone seemed to use their own ideas instead of following ours 😦

The biggest problem we faced was not finding a person to do helium balloons. After searching and talking to so many people, finally when I put out a call for help on Facebook and a friend gave us the number of a guy who did the balloons. We got the number just a day before the party and I was so worried on what to do until then.

The other big problem was our outfit. I had this vision to have me and Chhori wearing similar colour outfit and AS can have tie to coordinate with us. It turned out choosing the outfit was not easy as I planned because there are too many choices. Finally after going to a few boutiques, I settled on golden and fuchsia pink lengha and Chhori was getting fuchsia pink princess style gown.

It took many visits to get the dresses right fitting but the end result was perfect. I loved them.

It was a big job to find fuchsia pink tie in Kathmandu. The shop keepers had millions of other suggestions on the tie if they didn’t have the one I needed. But finally we found a shop that sold one and was super happy with it.

When the day of party arrived I was happy as most of the stuff were sorted. I got my make-up done and got dressed and got Chhori ready. AS was busy getting the decoration finished and picking up the cake.

He has always been so supportive of my ideas and when I plan, he helps me to make my plans come true. I think we complement each other well.

The photographers were already at the venue when we arrived. I was glad to see all the decoration looked as we planned. The hall was looking beautiful with hundreds of white and pink balloons floating around.

We had a few hours left before the guests arrived so we took photos of Chhori, us and with our parents.

 

Slowly, the venue started to fill with family and friends. I hadn’t met many of them for a while so it was great time for all of us.

After a couple of hours into the party, we cut the cake and then on to the dance floor as usual.

I had been teaching Chhori to dance to the Nepali move song “Sirai ma sirbandi” for the last few month but I didn’t know if she would dance or not. But she made us so proud by dancing to the song with all the right moves and steps. She actually danced twice to the song and we got some amazing photos and video of that. She was looking totally adorable and princessy in her cute outfit.

All our relatives were dancing and enjoying themselves as well. It was a really happy occasion for us to celebrate the birthday of our beautiful daughter with our close family and friends.

By 10 pm the guests had dinner and stared to leave. Chhori was really tired and was fast sleep on the sofa. It was a long day but we were very happy with the end result.

Chhori was spoiled by everyone with gifts, dresses and money. I know Chhori doesn’t understand much yet but we have some great photos and videos that she can go through when she is a bit older.

I will write more about our trip to Nepal in the next post. Till then take care.

from nepaliaustralian

XOXO

Chhori turns 2 – Birthday Puja

One of the main reasons for our visit to Nepal this time was to celebrate Chhori 2nd birthday in Nepal with friends and family.

In Newari culture, for reasons unknown and out of tradition handed down from generation to generation, the first birthday of a child is not celebrated. When a child is born, we have chhaiti, nwaran then pasni. After pasni, the big celebration is second birthday, which is known as Nirbuni.

Time goes by so quickly and our little munchkin turned a BIG 2 on 20 Feb.

As we were in Nepal for the celebration, we followed Newari culture to perform her birthday puja.

In Newari culture, we make Yomari every even birthday 2, 4, 6, 8, and 12. Yomari is a delicacy of the Newars. It consists of an external covering of rice-flour and an inner content of sweet substances such as chaku (Molasses). Click here for the recipe.

We had planned things in advance for this and were happy that things came together as planned on the big day.

On her birthday, in the morning, MIL prepared for birthday puja with sagun (traditional plate typically consisting of a boiled egg, smoked fish, a “bara”, haku chhoila” and “aila” and “dhau”) .

We had other relatives who were invited for the occasion including my parents, uncles and aunts.

The puja started with tika and yomari mala (garland) from my MIL followed by ritual to pour bits of rice, radish, coins, and cucumber in a small container from her head. This is believed to drive any evil spirit.

Then it was followed by Sagun and gifts to her.She was really spoiled with gifts like dresses and jewelleries.

My parents had come with my relatives to celebrate Chhori’s birthday with lots of food which included rotis, fruits, sagun and gifts.

After my MIL my mum and aunt did similar puja. Tika and sagun was followed by gifts to Chhori, me, AS and to my in laws.

Chhori loved the whole process except when the yomari garland was put around her neck as the string annoyed her and she wanted to take it out. She was happy with so many people around us that day for the whole day. We really had a great time with all the relatives.

After all the puja was finished, we had cake smash for her too. What a difference a year can make. When we had done the cake smash on Chhori’s first birthday, she was happy to be messy and smashed the cake well, which gave us some amazing photos but this year she definitely has become a big girl.

At first she just used her finger to taste the cake and then asked for a knife to cut the cake when asked to smash it. Nevertheless we had a great time and she had a lot of fun sharing a piece with everyone.

The day was long but fun and exciting.

We had her birthday party on another day so I will write more about it in my next post.

Till then, take care everyone and happy Monday.

from nepaliaustralian

XOXO