Sunday Short Stack

I love Sunday breakfast with my hunny!!  We kept it classic and just did pancakes and bacon.  I’m pretty picky about pancakes-they have to be fluffy and light.  I’ve got the perfect recipe for the fluffiest pancakes ever!  I’ve been making them this way for years and have never had a bad batch.

What you need:

3/4 cup milk

2 tablespoons white vinegar

1 cup all purpose flour

2 tablespoons white sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 egg

2 tablespoons butter, melted

I don’t know many people who just have buttermilk on hand.  So here’s how you make it = mix the milk and white vinegar together and let sit for 5 minutes, voila!  You have buttermilk!

During that 5 minutes, mix your dry ingredients together.

Once the milk is done transforming, mix in the egg and butter.  Then mix together the wet and the dry ingredients.  It should be a thick consistency.

Heat the stove to somewhere between medium and low heat.  Nice and slow is the trick with pancakes.  I see some people crank the heat up and the outside of the pancake cooks too fast so it doesn’t have a chance to get fluffy.

Once you pour your batter on the skillet, just wait for the bubbles to appear.  Once you see those flip the pancake over and leave it alone.  Don’t move it around, don’t lift it up, and for Pete’s sake don’t tap the top of it with your spatula!

(FYI – my batter is thicker so you won’t see as many bubbles as you would with a thinner batter, but this picture below shows the bubbles as they start to appear.)


Just watch the sides of the pancake, the whole thing will lift and when you see the sides looking done, place it in a dish.  Look at mine…see how thick and fluffy!!

Patience is key here.  When the pancake cooks slow it allows all the gas to release and fluff up the pancake.  What you end up with is light airy goodness!

Sometimes I add a little vanilla and cinnamon, or white chocolate and strawberries.  This is the standard pancake and you can add anything you like to it.  Blueberries, chocolate chips, nuts, anything!

Don’t forget your bacon!  We just seasoned ours with black pepper and red pepper flakes.  We makes ours in the oven to cut down on the mess.  We set the oven to 350 degrees and make a little foil basket in a cookie sheet to catch the grease.  If you like your bacon crispy but soft too, this is a great way to make it.  We just stick them in before we make pancakes and they’re done by the time we’re done.  Once you pull the bacon off just let the foil basket sit there and cool off.  Once the grease hardens crumple up the foil and toss it!  Easy peasy!

Positive State of Mind

This was in my fortune cookie today and I wanted to share it with you guys.  I think it is so important to count your blessings everyday.  This is a habit I’ve had since my college years.  Each day I like to think of things that I am thankful for and it always puts me in the right state of mind to have a great day.  When I start my days in a positive frame of mind, it usually stays that way.

I’d like for you guys to think  of things that you are grateful for and list them.  Not things like cars, malls, or jeans.  Dig deep and find out what you truly cannot live without and feel so blessed to have.

For me it’s:

  • family
  • my home (not house)
  • my beautiful son who is so healthy and strong (hasn’t been sick once!)
  • affection/support/love/friendship from my husband
  • all the support in my life from friends or family
  • my mother-in-law who takes care of my son-because of that I can work and pursue my dreams, who teaches him our language and sings religious songs to him, who keeps him safe and loved all day long…I can’t be grateful enough for this wonderful woman
  • my mother who keeps me company on my boring drive to work, always gives me wonderful advice, and has my back no matter what, the one person in my life besides my husband who has NEVER lied to me.
  • my brother and sister-in-law who have really been there.  I know they would drop anything to help me and now that I’m not living near them anymore they take care of Mom and Dad.
  • I could go on and on…with several years of practice, I’ve got a pretty long list.

Sometimes it might seem silly to throw in a positive, but it really helps build perspective.  So sometimes while I’m cutting someone’s hair I think ‘Gosh my back really hurts from doing this all day.’ and then I immediately think ‘Thank God I have hands to cut and create with!’  And then the backache doesn’t seem so important anymore.  Each time we have a negative in our path, there is always a positive reason it is there.  Let your negatives lead you to positives and thus lead you to a treasure trove of things to be grateful for!  Next time you find yourself complaining and painting yourself as a victim, stop and think and find the positive.

I wish you all a wonderful weekend!

Slow Cooker Butter Chicken – Vegetarian Substitute Tofu


If you’ve never tried Indian food, this is a good place to start.  Butter chicken is one of my favorite dishes.  It is so decadent and really very bad for you, but so so delicious.  There’s ways you can cut back on the fat and calories, but it just won’t taste as good!

My crock pot broke 😦 so I wasn’t able to make this with step by step pictures as per usual.  If you don’t have a crock pot you can make this on the stove and just simmer for a while.  The flavor really matures over time, but it will still taste good either way you do it.
This isn’t entirely from scratch, but it is the easiest way to do it at home.

Here’s what you need:

4-6 boneless chicken thighs cut into bite-sized pieces
1 onion diced
3 cloves garlic minced
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp oil

Stir fry these ingredients on medium heat until the chicken has some color and the onion is translucent. Then pour entire contents of pan into crock pot.

Then add:

15 cardamom pods (we just eat these, but if you don’t just put them in some cheesecloth)
2 tsp curry powder
1 tbsp curry paste (like Patak’s hot curry paste)
1 tsp red chili powder (optional)
2 tsp tandoori masala
1 tsp garam masala
8 oz (?) of heavy cream or milk (you can use coconut milk, but that makes it Thai!)
1 cup plain yogurt
1 5.5 fl oz can of tomato paste
Salt/Pepper to taste

Throw all of that into your crock pot and mix gently.  Set it to high for 4-6hours or medium for 6-8 hours.
Serve it with some rice or naan.  I have a good recipe for home made naan without a tandoor!  Ours tastes just like the restaurant kind!  I’ll give you that recipe soon.


A couple of notes from the chef 🙂

If you have Indian spices at home use those to customize this dish.  If you like more of certain flavors.  The ingredients I listed make this dish less complicated and more user friendly.  If you aren’t used to cooking with Indian spices, it can be intimidating until you learn them and figure out what each one adds to the dish.  You should be able to find the things I listed here in the international aisle.

Also feel free to increase the amounts of curry powder or curry paste.  2 tsp is really very little, usually I am putting spices in by the tablespoons.

Another thing that really adds to the flavor is using bone in chicken and getting it cut so that the marrow is exposed.  The marrow darkens the gravy and just adds a nice flavor to it.

For vegetarians just add in tofu where there’s chicken!  Simple!  You should probably saute the onion and garlic before you add in the tofu because tofu doesn’t take long to brown.

If you have any questions, feel free to write me.  If you end up making it please tell me about your experience!




I was browsing Pinterest the other night and stumbled upon this tutorial:



Here is my attempt:

Not only was it super easy, but I’ve been getting tons of compliments.  It looks way harder than it is and when you see the tutorial images you realize just how simple it is.

I used some new China Glaze Neons and the glitter on my ring finger is OPI from the Muppet Collection.  It probably won’t last very long since my hands are constantly in water at the salon.  Maybe next time I will seal it with my gel top coat.  Worth a try!  Get into the neon trend, it’s so fun to look at!  My nails have been cheering me up!

Looking for a really good top coat? – use Seche Vite!  It is so so shiny and makes the color really pop!  It also distracts from minor imperfections because of the high gloss.  What are some nail trends you’re into?

Hugs from Beyond

My Grandfather passed away the year I met my husband.  And just like that the relationship was reincarnated.  Read about that here:  A Lesson in Value

Here’s a moment in my life I hold very close to my heart.

When I was about 1 years old, my Dada (that’s what I call him) came to live with us.  At first it was just a visit, but I missed him so much when he left that he ended up coming back and never leaving.  That decision changed my life forever.

Growing up with Dada was such a blessing.  He was calm and collected, intelligent, full of stories, and a gentle soul.  From him I learned the art of forgiveness, and letting things go.  He had unconditional love for us, and no matter who came to him for help and advice, he was always willing to help.  That’s how I learned about compassion.  Dada was an astrologer and a damn good one.  He’s never been wrong.  And just a few weeks before he passed away he said something to me that changed the course of my life.

Now Dada had always given me sound advice, and he seemed to always know what was going to happen in my life.  By the time I was in my teenage years I had come to blindly trust him.  He had never failed to warn me of money pits, accidents, no good people, etc.  So that day when I went to visit him after work was no different.  I sat and asked how he was feeling.  I scratched his back for him and held his hand while we just sat and talked about my day, just the way he used to hold my hand when I was sick.  I told him he needed to hang on until I got married and had kids.  I needed him in my life.  I was feeling so lost and alone.  He was in the hospital for an extended time and my routine at home was turned upside down.  The times in the evenings when we used to sit and joke around had turned into quiet evenings alone, waiting for my parents to come home.  I missed him in a way I’d never felt before.  He had warned me several times that his time was coming.  I couldn’t accept it.  I foolishly, perhaps naively,  relied on the doctors to turn him back into the Dada that I grew up with.

So that day, I asked him for a final piece of advice.  I asked him to tell me everything I needed to know.  I knew that from the day I was born he had made my astro charts and he knew all along what would become of me, and as I grew and matured he would give me little nuggets of information that would help me along my path. I was asking him for guidance.

He squeezed my hand, and told me that he wouldn’t “physically” be at my wedding.  Tears filled my eyes as I squeezed his hand back and nodded, accepting the information.

“You’ll be married by 26, don’t worry.”

“But how?  There isn’t even a man in my life right now.”  I frowned wondering who on Earth was going to come into my life and sweep me off my feet in a matter of 11 months, at which point I would turn 26.

“He’ll be tall and good looking, educated, and from a good family.  Don’t worry you’re a very lucky person, you have all good things in your future.”  He went on to vaguely describe light colored eyes and an unusual last name.

I asked Dada how I would meet this man, and he told me when he figured it out he would tell me.

He also told me that I would go back to school for another degree and really help people.  He said I’d be like a doctor.  I took all this information and put it in my pocket.  A month later, he passed, just the way he said he would.  With my mom by his side and peacefully.  It all happened the way it was supposed to.  I wasn’t supposed to be there, and so like he had foretold, I got stuck at a meeting for work and instead of going straight to the hospital, came home to meet my parents.  I vaguely remember walking into the house and my dad telling me “Dada is no more”  and I hit the floor.  My muscles just gave out and an invisible hand violently snatched my heart from my body.  My cousins were all around me and my dad was hugging me and I just remember saying “No” over and over again.

The day of his funeral, I had a dream.  I couldn’t see him but I could feel him.  Even the things he said to me, I couldn’t hear them, but I could feel them.  He told me to get on a matrimonial site that I hadn’t had luck with before.  I even protested in my dream.  He insisted that I needed to do this now or my life would take a different path, and one that wasn’t intended for me.  I woke up confused and crying.  Despite the confusion, I ran to my laptop in the middle of the night and through tears and choked sobs I put up my profile on

It was only a week later that I saw the profile of a mysterious looking man with kind, light colored eyes.  Within a few months I was engaged to be married and happier than I could imagine.  I now knew the meaning of soul mate and true love.  Everything my grandfather told me came true.  And he kept his promise, as soon as he knew how I was going to meet my husband, he told me.  I know without a doubt that if I had never had that dream I wouldn’t have put my profile up.  I had such bad luck with matrimonial sites in the past, that I wasn’t willing to take that chance again, but how could I ignore a message from beyond?!

This past Saturday was my Grandfather’s birthday and in his memory each year we go out to eat.  That was his thing, for birthdays and death-days we would all go out and eat in honor of that person.  To keep his tradition alive, my husband and I go out on birthdays and death-days as well.  Typically my parents will go out at the same time and I spend dinner on the phone with them as we remember and share favorite stories. We keep it small and intimate and it always feels like such a special occasion.  Like we’re really honoring him and everything he contributed to our family.

I love to remember him and share stories with my husband about him.  Jayesh tells me that he feels like he knows Dada as if he grew up with him too.  I’m so excited to share this tradition with my son.

As for the other predictions, I did end up going back to school and as a hairdresser I help people by listening to them and being a friend to confide in, and by making them feel good about themselves.  As for the doctor part, well I do a lot of that for my family.  With all the prior experience and the education I’ve received, I’m blessed to be able to decipher medical reports and interpret diagnostic images for my family.

Dada, you changed my life, and even after you’ve moved on to your next life, you continue to inspire and motivate.  I thank God for the time we had together.  I feel you when you’re around, and your wisdom resonates in our lives.

I wanted to share this to honor his memory.  This is the story I remembered when we were celebrating this weekend.  Do any of you have personal traditions that you keep?  If you don’t, I think it’s a wonderful thing to share with those closest to you.  I hope to pass this on to my children and perhaps they’ll find positivity on a day that would normally bring feelings of sadness.