Simple DIY Coasters

Are you the kind of person who loves to give gifts ?  I love to give handmade gifts . There is something very fulfilling about giving a gift that is handmade . I feel a lot of love and effort goes into it and it definitely sends a message to the person receiving it , how much we cherish them . I have a few simple DIY’s up my sleeve for the hostess which are simple , thoughtful , unique , pretty , useful and most importantly don’t break the bank. IMG_9449 (2)


This DIY is so simple that my kids helped me and we could do it in one afternoon. , If you don’t have square coasters like I had in my stash , you can find thin ply boards as less as $5 in any home improvement store like Home depot and Lowe’s and they can cut the 4X4 squares for you for free and you can whip up a ton of them . Another option is to use ceramic tile , but they are going to be heavier than these wood ones .

The coasters I had were purchased in India in a sale in Shopper’s stop I think … I purchased them about 5 years ago and have never opened them until I was rummaging my closet for something else . They are pretty as they are , but I’m not a fan of brown and  wanted to spruce them .

Materials Needed


What you need

4- 6 pack square wood coasters

2 kinds of wrapping paper

Modge Podge

A brush to apply the modge podge

Gold Sharpie Pen

Exacto Knife

Scissors .

Shopping or Old credit card

Directions :

1.  Make sure your coasters are free of dirt and grime . Spray some water / cleaner and wipe with a dry cloth and dry them until all the moisture is gone . This is a very important step . Do not skip it .

2. Measure the coasters against the wrapping paper and cut the paper according to size

Paper Cut

3. Dip the brush into the modge podge and  apply it liberally one one side of the square coaster and apply the paper on it gently and press . Modge Podged Base


4. Using a shopping or old credit card , run the card in one direction from one end to another making sure there are no bubbles .

5. Apply a thin coat of Modge Podge again on top of the paper  at least for 3 times and let it dry for at least 3 days .

Top Coat

6. Repeat on the other side again .

7. After the coasters are dry , I ran a gold colored sharpie across the edges to give it a more glamorous look . If your wood or tile is thicker , you can also gold leaf it .

8. Because I used different kind of paper each side , it would be easy to switch them up whenever Im in for a change :)

Pretty Coasters

The total cost of the project would be approximately $10 and you can re use the items purchased many many times .




New Beginnings …

Hello Everyone !!! I am not even sure about what to write here … 5 years seems like a long break for anyone to take but, you see , I wanted to soak up the joy of raising my beautiful daughters ! They seem to grow very fast ,before I could catch up. I have to also admit I did lose the passion to post quality content and I had no intention of writing a blog just for the sake of readership . I do understand that this blog is nothing without you guys but I also write for myself :) I loved loved loved getting emails from a few of you during my long absence  and I did look forward to them . Thank you for checking on me . You are one of the reasons I am posting again !


As usual , I don’t have a plan , again ! about  what I want to post ,how I want to schedule my posts etc . For now I want to focus on talking about  bunch of things like food , my favorite finds , a bit of simple DIY, my home decoration process etc . I have made some wonderful friends via the blog world and I continue to look forward to forming long lasting relationships .

I am super excited of beginning a new chapter and would love to have you with me !


Cheers and Hugs !!


And the winner is…

MLLA -33 round up is finally here !  Thanks  to all of you for taking the time out to send an entry and make this event a grand success.

I received quite a lot of entries  from 48 blogs , after eliminating the previous winners , I numbered the entries based on the date received and chose the winner using a random generator and the winner is  Kalva of Curry in Kadai !

Congratulations Kalva , Susan will touchbase with you and many thanks to you susan for being patient with me! Hugs to you

The round up is in random order ,


1.Black Eyed Beans with Garlic and Olive Oil from  Cooking In Westcher

2. Tomato Bajji from Srav’s culinary concepts

3. Nimona and Kothimbir Vadi from Veggie platter

4. Borlotti Bean soup from Cindystar

5. Matki Moth Beans with Amti Masala , Lentil Croquettes and Misal Usal from Samayal Arai – Cooking is Divine

6. Roasted Onion Quinoa Azuki Salad from City Life Eats

7.Cannellini al gratin from Eats well with others

8. Spiced Lentils with Mushrooms from Rachel’s Bite

9. Shoki Shoki Azuki Bean Salad from Torwen

10. Mesopotamian Barley, Chickpea, Lentil, Tahini Soup from Lisa’s Kitchen

11. Masala Vada from Curry in Kadai

12.Ottolenghi’s Spiced Chickpeas with Fresh Vegetable Salad from More than Burnt toast

13. Pakore Wali Kadhi (Fried Onion Dumplings in Yogurt Sauce) from Ecurry

14. Usli from Vegetarian Delicacies

15. Kanchipuram Idlis and Thavala Adai from Kamu’s Kaivannam

16. Sprouts stuffed Parathas from Flavours and Tastes

17. Artichoke and Chickpea Curry from Sweet Artichoke

18. Dalimbay Bhat , Radish chickpea curry and Beetroot Radish salad from My spicy kitchen

19. Amristari Chole from Asan Khana

20. Dal Makhni from My Tasty Treats

21. Lima Beans Kurma and Mixed Lentil and Vegetable stew from Tamalapaku

22. Healthy n Hearty Spring Beans Salad with Muhammara Dressing and Peanut Oats Laddu from Creative Sanyukta

23. Symphonic Mixed Bean Salad from Taste Space

24. Heirloom Bean and Mushroom Stew from what would cathy eat?

25. Garam Masala Lentils with Soy from Food for Laughter

26. Arisi Parupu Saadam from Krithi’s Kitchen

27.Dal Amritsari from My Kitchen Antics

28. Aloo Soy Bean Subzi and Rajma from Ambrosia

29. Red Lentil Cauliflower cobbler from Allotment2kitchen

30. Spinach Dal from Collaborative Curry

31. Besan chilla from Holy Cow

32. Fried tofu with Ginger spinach from Erbe in cucina

33. Chakkara Pongal from My Diverse Kitchen

34. Peanut Rice from Enveetu Kitchen

35. Gurdani from Food Mazaa

36. Sprouted Moong chutney powder from Niveditha’s kitchen

37. Chickpeas with catalan picada from Briciole

38. Tofu Carpaccio from Taste with the eyes

39. Pancakes with Potatoes and Lentils from Green Gourmet Giraffe Blog

40.Ultimate winter couscous from Taste Space

41. Black eyed Peas with Kale and sweet potatoes from Girlichef

42. Baked Broccoli Pakoras from Chez Cayenne

43. Sprouted Chick pea falafel from La Caffettiera Rosa

44. Olan from Vadani Kaval Gheta

45. Tomato Dal from Yummy Food

46.  Deep Fried Kachoris from Torview

47. Dalma from saffron streaks

48. Mung and Urad dal Appam from Sensible veg

49. Mattar ki dal amti from Zesty South Indian Kitchen


Do Participate in MLLA-34 hosted by The Desi Soccer Mom and here is the future list of MLLA hosts





My Legume Love Affair – 33

A Big Thank you to Susan for giving me this wonderful opportunity to host  MLLA-33 .  The daily grind of handling 2 beauties and a home has taken precedence over everything else in life.  We had another beautiful addition to our family , Little Anika who is 5 months old . If it not were for MLLA , I would have taken a longer break than this.

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Back to the Grind…

It took me almost a year to get back to blogging. Sorry folks , but life has been a roller coaster so far this year. I was in India for about 4 and a half months , initially vacationing  and then realizing , it might be a permanent move and then figuring out that it was indeed a long vacation. Now , I am back to where I was and slowly getting back to the grind.

We also realized a little angel has choosen us to be her parents. Yes! you got it right , little Ishya will soon be having a  baby sister this fall ! The past month has been all about settling down , innumerable shopping trips for the new baby , driving my little one to play dates and classes and keeping her from being bored.

Realization struck that I haven’t been cooking regularly for a long time now , just an occasional quick fix in the kitchen to survive . I started cooking full fledged meals only since last week and this one of the first hits that I’d like to share with you. I might not be regularly blogging , but will drop in occasionally to say Hi !

Chickpeas have always been a source of comfort for K and handy to throw in a quick meal for me.. These slowly grew on me and now I thoroughly enjoy them. Instead of the normal chole or a chickpea stew , I decided to add some zing to them and turned it into a sweet and sour sensation. It was a huge hit with both roti and rice. This recipe is adapted from the Curry Bible , 660 Curries  By Raghavan Iyer.



1 cup of dried chickpeas soaked overnight

1 medium sized onion

2 medium sized tomatoes

1 tablespoon of thick tamarind paste

A big squirt of agave nectar/maple syrup ( use as needed)

A bay leaf

1 teaspoon of kala jeera/ cumin seeds

1/2 teaspoon  of cumin powder

1/2 teaspoon of coriander powder

1 teaspoon of coarsely ground ginger and garlic paste

A pinch of garam masala (optional)

A pinch of turmeric

1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper

Oil and Salt to taste

cilantro for garnish


1. Cook the chickpeas on a stove top until tender or in a pressure cooker until at least 5-7 whistles. They should be intact but cooked.

2. You know the drill , Heat oil in a kadhai add some  kala jeera or Jeera ( black cumin or normal cumin seeds, i prefer black cumin for the flavor they impart to the dish) , a dry bay leaf , turmeric .once they sizzle add the onions and brown them ,

3. Next , add the chopped tomatoes and let that simmer into a mushy sauce and then add the cooked chickpeas . Add salt and a cup of water and let the chickpeas simmer for at least 10-15 minutes. Then add the cumin , coriander powders and the cayenne pepper and cook for another couple of minutes. Just 5 minutes before you switch off the flame , add the tamarind paste and the agave nectar and mix well. Let the curry simmer until mixed well . Remove from heat , garnish with cilantro and savour it with rice , roti or thick crusty bread .

Notes and Variations:

1. Add the spice powders almost at the end to avoid a bitter taste , if you are letting the curry simmer for a longer period  or slow cooking it.

2. I add vegetables like potato /eggplant / Kale and spinach for a twist.

3. Dont worry if the curry becomes mushy and you over cook your chickpeas , It tastes great with thick crusty bread , You can top the bread with this curry or simply dunk it and have a hearty meal.

4. I also cook the chickpeas and add raw chopped onions and tomatoes and use the ingredients to make a dressing for a salad . I also top it off with some store bought sev or some urad dal papad .It tastes great !