German Chocolate Pecan Pie Bars

From Recipe Revival: Southern Classics Reinvented for Modern Cooks by the Editors of Southern Living

NOTE: This recipe alone is worth the cost of the book.

Makes: 2 dozen (or a 13 x 9 pan full).
Hands On: 20 min
Total: 3 h 20 m


1 3/4 c all purpose flour
3/4 c powdered sugar
3/4 c cold butter, cubed
1/4 c unsweetened cocoa
1 1/2 c semisweet chocolate morsels
3/4 c firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 c light corn syrup
1/4 c butter, melted
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 c sweetened flaked coconut
3 c toasted pecan halves and pieces


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Line bottom and sides of 13 x 9 pan with heavy duty aluminum foil, allowing 2 to 3 in to extend over the sides. Lightly grease the foil.
  3. Pulse the flour and next three ingredients (powdered sugar, cold butter, unsweetened cocoa) in food processor 5 or 6 times or until the mixture is crumbly. Press the mixture on the bottom and 3/4 in up the sides of the prepared pan.
  4. Bake the crust at 350 F for 15 min. Remove from the oven, and sprinkle the chocolate morsels over the crust. Cool completely on a wire rack (about 30 min).
  5. Whisk together the brown sugar and next three ingredients (corn syrup, melted butter, eggs) until smooth. Stir in the coconut and toasted pecans, and spoon into the prepared crust.
  6. Bake at 350 F for 25 to 30 min or until golden and set. Cool completely on a wire rack (about 1 hour). Chill 1 hour. Lift from the pan, using foil sides as handles. Transfer to a cutting board. Cut into bars.
  7. Enjoy!

Navaratri Sabu Dana Pooda

Sabu Dana Pooda
(this is a tapioca pancake)

1/2 c sabu dana (tapioca), soak in 2 c warm water for 2 hours


1/4 – 1/2 c ground peanuts
Adu Mircha (ginger jalapeno paste)

Mix to create batter.

Optional add:
Shredded potatoes
Ground ginger
Green pepper, julienne
Coriander, chopped

In skillet:
1 tbsp oil
Add big spoonful of mixture, spread, cover (with lid!) on low/medium heat.
Check every 2-3 min.
Flip, don’t cover (with lid).


Navaratri Sabu Dana Khichdi

Sabu Dana Khichdi
(this is a hot mash made of tapioca)

1/2 c sabu dana (tapioca), soak in 2 c warm water for 2 hours


Jeeru (cumin)
Ground black pepper
Green pepper, julienne
Ginger, julienne

Shredded potatoes (from 1 small potato)
Ground peanuts (one small handful)

Add tapioca.

Add salt and yogurt and lemon juice to taste.


Navaratri Potato Shak

Navaratri Potato Shak
(appropriate for fasting)

Boil potatoes, dice into half inch cubes.

Ghee (clarified butter)
Jeeru (cumin)
Sesame seeds (tal)
Black pepper (mari)

Add boiled diced potatoes.

Lemon juice to taste.


Happy Navaratri!!

Navaratri is a Hindu holiday. It began on October 1, 2016, and lasts for nine days. Each of the nine days is dedicated to the Mother Goddess, Durga/Ambaji/Mataji. Most Hindus fast for all nine days. Learn more about Navaratri here. The holy book for the Mother Goddess is called Chandipath. Read it here. Hindu gods and goddesses have many names. Read about the many names of the different Hindu gods and goddesses here.

Other important Hindu festival dates:

Dassera – October 11, 2016.
Vagh Baras – October 27, 2016.
Dhanteras – October 28, 2016.
Kali Chaudas – October 29, 2016.
DIWALI – October 30, 2016. [Festival of Lights][VIP date!!!]
NEW YEAR – October 31, 2016. [Gujarati New Year]
Bhai Beej – November 1, 2016. [Brother and Sister’s Day]

Diwali is celebrated all over India, by all religions and states (much the way that Christmas is celebrated here in the US). Please wish any Indian looking people in your life a “Happy Diwali” on Diwali day.

Learn more about Diwali here.

I’m following up my blog with a few simple recipes that can be enjoyed over Navaratri. NOTE: I haven’t gotten around to including recipes for the full thal, let me know if you are interested in that.
NOTE: Thal refers to the full balanced meal plate of food that is offered to God. Have you seen the pictures of Indian meals, with a silver plate, and a bunch of little bowls? That plate and bowl set is called a thali. Generally, a proper thali includes a bread dish (roti, poori, paratha), a few vegetable dishes (shak), a few lentil soup (dal) dishes, pickle (achar), salad (kachumber), sweet (mithai), yogurt (dhai or raita).


Shredded Apple Jam

Apple Chhundo / Shredded Apple Jam

This recipe makes enough for four people to enjoy with dinner. About a quarter cup? A lot depends on the type and size of apples you use. This lasts in the fridge for months (the same way a normal jam or jelly you buy would last), or at room temperature for around a week (in Chicago!!! That would be around 70 degrees F!).

If you have ever had mango (keri) chhundo, you will love this recipe. The proper type of mango (kachi keri) to make a pickle (athana/achar) is not frequently available in the US. However, apples are plentiful all year round.

This recipe taste great with naan, rice, bread (toasted), roti, paratha, poori, veggies, or really anything. I personally enjoy eating spoonfuls by itself, the way a normal person would eat Nutella. YMMV.

Note: Sugar and salt amounts depend on the type of apple you use and how sweet or tart it is. A Granny Smith apple would require more sugar than a Macintosh, for example. Start at the bottom of the scale and work your way up, tasting the jam along the way. (You can add more sugar and salt than I’ve suggested, as I said, it depends on your taste :)) (If you want to be super fancy, you can add some ghol/jaggery in addition to the sugar — just a few tsp will make a huge difference in taste. If you don’t have ghol, you can use brown sugar. Whatever you like. If you are partial to molasses cookies, you will like the recipe with brown sugar or ghol. If you are partial to sugar cookies, you will like it with plain sugar. Experiment to find what you like best).

Note: This recipe is pretty mild, but full of spices. It is not hot the way most people think of Indian food as being. My family and I are from Chicago, and do not eat spicy food. If you want to increase the heat quotient, increase the amount of paprika, or add a red chili pepper (dried) to the vaghar. Most Indian people in India add chili peppers to vaghar, that is why the food is so darn spicy. My family and I do not do this. It is horrible, like cooking with chili oil. However, if that is your thing, go for it! If you absolutely (for health reasons or whatever) cannot tolerate hot food, omit the paprika. If you cannot tolerate spicy food, omit the cinnamon, black pepper, clove, and paprika. Don’t worry, it will still taste good without it😉


1 apple, shredded (use a hard apple, like Macintosh, Granny Smith, Red Delicious)
1/4 tsp mustard seeds (rye)
1/4 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds (methi)
1/2 tsp turmeric (haldar)
1/8 tsp asafoetida (hing)
3 whole black pepper
1 in cinnamon stick
2 whole cloves
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 – 1/2 tsp salt (depending on taste)
2-3 tbsp sugar (depending on taste)
1 tbsp vegetable oil
3 bay leaves


  1. Vaghar – put oil on heated pot until oil is hot. Add mustard seeds (they will splatter). Add fenugreek seeds. Add cumin. Add bay leaves, cinnamon stick, cloves, black pepper. Add turmeric and asafoetida. Add paprika.
  2. Add shredded apple. Let cook until all moisture is gone.
  3. Add paprika, salt and sugar.
  4. Let cook until all moisture is gone. Sugar will lose water and then thicken into jam consistency.
  5. It takes a few minutes after you add the sugar until the sugar comes together in a thick syrup.
  6. Remove from stove.
  7. Enjoy!

NOTE: I usually enjoy with with poori and a nice hot cup of Indian tea.

NOTE: Most people can’t taste the difference between this apple chhundo and a normal gujarati keri chhundo.😉

Hapsi Halwa

Recipe from Video here (not in English).

Website here.

If you like burnt, caramel flavored sweets, this is for you.


  •  milk 2 kg
  • plain flour 1/2 cup
  • sugar 1 cup
  • ghee 1 1/2 cup (clarified butter)
  • walnuts 1/2 cup (sliced)
  • almonds 1/2 cup (sliced)
  • citric acid 1 ts (mix it with 1 cup of water)
  • vinegar 3 tbs
  • liquid glucose 4 tbs (dr oetker brand)
  • green cardamom powder 1 ts
  • unsweetend coco powder 2 tbs
  • pistachios 8 pieces (sliced)
  • greased tray


  1.  in a pan add the milk and bring it to a boil.
  2. once boiled add the citric acid and water mix in the milk, turn off the flame and cover it for a few min till the milk separat.
  3. once the milk separats then cook on high flame till the water drys.
  4. while drying the water add the coco powder, green cardamom powder mix well.
  5. when 1 cup of water is left close the flame and add sugar, vinegar, plain flour & half of the clarified butter mix well, and on the flame low to medium and keep stirring.
  6. while stirring keep adding the remaining clarified butter 1 tbs at a time, till the clarified butter comes on the surface.
  7. once the butter comes on the surface add the nuts mix well and add the liquid glucose mix well (make sure they is no water in it completely dry)
  8. now transfer the sweet in the greased tray, garnish it with the remaining nuts and pistachios, leave to cool down.
  9. cut in pieces and serve.