Monthly Archives: July 2011

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Wedding Update + Indian Playlist

I’d like to take y’all back to the weekend I spent in New Jersey for a family reunion.  In my recap of that weekend, I talked a lot about family, food, and craziness.  I forgot to mention one major thing.  Don’t hate me, ok? 

I forgot to mention that I found my wedding outfit that weekend!  Yes, I found “the one.”

See, Edison, New Jersey is the Indian capital of the US.  What that means is that Edison, in particular, is home to thousands of Indians.  What that means is that there are tons of Indian restaurants, grocery stores, and clothing boutiques.  Lucky me!

The day I arrived at my cousin’s house, my parents, sister, and I ventured out to Oak Tree Road (the mostly Indian street in Edison).  I tried on a couple of outfits at the first boutique we went to and found one I liked but didn’t love.  We then headed to the next store, but I honestly didn’t have high expectations.  In my mind, we were just looking.  Well, lo and behold, I was shown an outfit that I absolutely loved.  After looking at a few other pieces, I asked the lady we were working with if I could try in “the one.”  I immediately felt like a princess.  It was just what I was looking for.  My parents and sister also loved it!  By the end of the weekend, it was confirmed, that was going to be MY wedding outfit!  We went back to the store and put a deposit down.

Now, fast forward to this weekend.  Yesterday morning, I headed to my aunt’s house in Connecticut to pick her up so we could make our way back to NJ for a fitting. Smile  The best part about it is that I am more in love with my outfit then ever before!  Seeing it again made me so so so excited for the big day!

Now, I know y’all are wondering what the outfit looks like, but I’m afraid you’re not going to see it until after the big day!  The reason being because I don’t want Vishnu to see the outfit beforehand.  I want him to be surprised!  And a part of me wants my guests to be surprised as well.  At every wedding I’ve been to, you can almost feel the anticipation right before the bride’s arrival.  I don’t want my day to be any different!

Soon enough, my friends, soon enough!

Now, on to the second part of today’s title.  I’ve noticed that a lot of bloggers like to share their playlists, which I personally find very helpful.  But I have yet to see an Indian song on any of the lists.  That needs to change pronto because there are so many awesome songs out there that will literally make you want to stop and dance in the middle of your workout. 

So, if you’re looking for a fun way to change up your usual playlist, check out these songs…

1. Desi Girl from the Bollywood movie Dostana
2. Laung da Lashkara from the Bollywood movie Patiala House
3. Nai Rehna by Imran Khan
4. Hadippa the Remix from the Bollywood movie Dil Bole Hadippa
5. Disco Khisko from the Bollywood movie Dil Bole Hadippa
6. Chali Chali from the Bollywood movie Bhaghban
7. Aaja Nachle from the Bollywood movie Aaja Nachle
8. Mauja Mauja from the Bollywood movie Jab We Met
9. Ni Nachle by Imran Khan featuring Lucky
10. Uff Teri Ada from the Bollywood movie Karthik calling Karthik

I especially like the last song.  Just YouTube the song title, and you’ll understand what I’m talking about.

It has something to do with this guy…he’s dreamy. Winking smile

farhan gq magazine


Good night!  I hope you had a fabulous weekend!

How often do you change up/add to your playlist?

Black Bean Sweet Potato Cakes

I can’t even remember the last time I actually took the time to prep and make a meal.  Sure, I’ve thrown things together to make a dish or two here and there.  But it really has been forever since some thought and creativity went into my cooking.  But no fears, I’m back with a new recipe, and it’s a good one!

One of my all time favorite food combinations are black beans and sweet potatoes.  To me, they go together like peanut butter and jelly…or something like that.  So, when I saw that I still had one whole sweet potato lying around plus a can of black beans, I had so many ideas swimming around in my head.  Then, in true Parita fashion, an idea hit me [see title of post], and I got to work.

Here’s what you’ll need to make 6 cakes:

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
2 cloves of minced garlic
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons chili powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 cups shredded sweet potatoes (about one medium potato)
1 flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flax seed + 3 tablespoons water)
1/3 cup breadcrumbs

What to do:

In a large bowl, mash up black beans with a fork.  Then add garlic, cumin, paprika, chili powder, salt and pepper.  Mix thoroughly.  Then incorporate shredded sweet potatoes into the black bean mixture.  Mix in flax egg and breadcrumbs.  Form six round cakes with hands.  Place the cakes on a baking sheet and broil for 10 minutes on one side.  Flip cakes over and broil for another 3-5 minutes until brown and crispy.

And you’ll end up with these…

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Because of the cumin and chili powder, these cakes have a very earthy taste.  And I love that there is no egginess to them because of the flax egg.  Also, to top it off, they are super healthy and incredibly filling.  A true winner in my book!

Versatility is another great thing with this recipe as you can dress the cakes up whatever way you want.  In an ideal situation, I would’ve ate these alongside some guacamole, sour cream, and salsa.  However, I didn’t have avocados or sour cream lying around, so I made do by topping my cakes off with some grated low fat cheddar cheese, Annie’s Goddess dressing (is there anything this stuff isn’t good with?!), and salsa.  Still very delicious!

BB   SP 015

These BB + SP cakes will definitely be making an appearance again soon!  They were so easy to put together, tasted absolutely delicious. 

Well, off I go to send off some wedding emails. Smile  And don’t forget to check out my guest post over on Alexa’s blog!

Have a great night!

Do you enjoy the combination of black beans and sweet potatoes?!

WIAW: All About Cereal

I love cereal.  Ok, that’s a lie.  What I meant to say was I LOVE cereal!!!  Yes, I am one of those people who could eat bowls of cold cereal and milk every day of her life and still not be sick of it. 

So, for this week’s edition of WIAW (courtesy of the fabulous Jenn), I thought I would focus on something I ate a lot this past week…cereal.

See for me, this love affair started decades ago, when my parents would buy boxes and boxes of the following…

count chocula box old




Do you see a trend here?  Sugar, marshmallows, sugars.  Mention either of the above cereals, and I am immediately reminded of my childhood. 

I no longer buy Count Chocula or Lucky Charms for myself.  However, if it just happens to be around, I may have a bowl or two…just sayin’!

Over the years, my tastes have changed a bit. I am still obsessed, but my natural tendency is to pick up a box of this…



Oh yes!  Good ole’ Honey Bunches of Oats with Almonds.  To be honest, I still occasionally eat a bowl of two of this for lunch or dinner.  It has the perfect balance of crunchy clusters, sweet flakes, and toasted almonds.  LOVE!

And every now and then, I allow myself to pick up a box of this stuff, knowing it will probably disappear in a few days…



This is probably my all time favorite cereal.  Seriously, if you haven’t tried it yet, please do!  It’s
a-mazing!  In my opinion, a bowl of this tastes kind of like fresh baked banana bread.  However, it’s a little addicting, and I have absolutely zero willpower around this stuff, so I resist buying it but every few months.  Yes, it’s that good!

You may think that this post doesn’t count for WIAW, but trust me, when you’ve had a week like mine, cereal is your go to food – simple, easy, and balanced.  I definitely had my far share of the stuff this week, so in my book it most definitely counts.

I hope y’all have a great night!  Oh and be on the lookout tomorrow morning for my guest post on Alexa’s blog!!! Smile

What was your favorite cereal growing up?  What about now?

Beachfront for the Weekend

Hi, y’all!  I hope your Monday was good.  I’m going to be honest and say that mine was a b****.  Really, it was!  I pretty much spent all day either catching up on emails or attending meetings.  And to top it off, I was so freakin’ tired!  This week is going to be rough!  It’s a good thing I like my job!

Well, I promised a recap of the weekend, so here it is…

Note: After uploading my pictures last night, I realized that I didn’t have many good shots for the blog.  I guess it’s because so many people brought cameras that I felt awkward taking bajillions of pictures.  One of Vishnu’s cousins brought her fancy shmancy camera, so once I get a hold of those pictures, I will definitely share some of the good shots.  That’s a promise!

I got to La Jolla on Thursday morning.  After Vishnu picked me up, we headed back to the hotel so I could freshen up.  It was almost lunchtime and we were all starving, so Vishnu, his parents, brother, and I headed to lunch.  We ate at a decent Thai place, and then walked around for a bit.  We were staying at a hotel that was pretty much situated in the best part of La Jolla – the beach was a block away and there were tons of shops and restaurants all around us. 

That night we headed to his cousin’s condo for some family time.  I got to hang out with most of his mom’s side of the family.  They were so incredibly nice!  I felt like they really made an effort to get to know me, and their excitement about our wedding was so genuine.  My nervousness about meeting them completely fell by the wayside as soon as the conversations started going.  Smile  So, I didn’t take any pictures that night because I knew that I wouldn’t be posting any of them.  I didn’t want to put a picture of someone on the internet without their consent, and I didn’t want to tell them about my blog…not yet anyways!  I just met them…call me weird, but that’s how I feel!

Day two was equally as fun.  Vishnu’s brother and I woke up and went for a morning run along the beach.  A quick hour long run turned into a 2 hour adventure as we navigated our way back to the hotel.  It was really nice spending time with him…he’s really the little brother I never had!  Take a look at some of our views…

La Jolla 010

Those are either sea lions or seals…I’m not too sure.  Either way it was incredible to see them relaxing on the rock.  What a life!

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Check out this little guy!  There were probably 10-15 of them running around and having the time of their lives.

Friday night we headed to the Mehndhi (Henna) party.  Everyone socialized, ate, and drank.  There was a station set up where women (and men if they wanted) could get mehndhi done.  Again, lots of fun!

La Jolla 032

The next day was wedding day!  We got up fairly early and started getting ready ASAP. 

Remember how I was so nervous about the sari issue.  Well, because we were so pressed for time, Vishnu’s mom helped me out.  And to be completely honest, her method was very different from my own mom’s.  It didn’t look the way I wanted it to, but it worked.  In the end, it really didn’t matter if my pleats were perfect because, well, it wasn’t my wedding!  Haha.

The wedding was held outside, and it was truly gorgeous – a perfectly manicured golf course in the background and the beach off in the distance.  I don’t think my descriptions of everything would do any justice, so I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves…

La Jolla 071La Jolla 072

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Yep…his cousin arrived on a horse.  (For those of you who are completely baffled by this, I’ll explain more later.)

La Jolla 101

The beautiful bride and groom!

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Oh and look at my mehndhi the next day – a deep red!

The reception was held an hour or so after the wedding.  The ballroom was beautifully decorated with bright colors as you can tell by our table’s centerpiece…

La Jolla 115

There was lots of dancing and eating at this reception.  The bride and groom wanted everyone to have fun and in order to loosen the crowd up a bit, they opened up the night with their very own dance number.  They performed a choreographed dance to a few different songs.  It was so cute!  And they definitely set the bar high for me and Vishnu. Smile

La Jolla 121

All in all it was a great weekend!  I’m so glad I was able to take part in this event and meet a lot of Vishnu’s family.  Now I really can’t wait until my own special day!

Did you have a good weekend? 

Quick Update + Giveaway WINNER!

Hi, y’all!  I hope you had a great weekend!  As you know, I was in La Jolla, California for the past few days, and let me tell you, it was awesome!  All of it…the city, the beach, the wedding, spending time with Vishnu and his family…all of it!

I will post a more detailed recap tomorrow, but in the meantime, I thought I’d share a couple of pictures from the weekend…

La Jolla 003

La Jolla 026

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Ok, and now for the moment y’all have been waiting for…we have a Special Day Giveaway winner! 

And the winner is (based on my friend who volunteered to be my random number generator)…drum roll please…


Susan!!  Congrats!  Please email me your mailing address so I can send you the hair serum and a few other fun things!

Ok, I’m going to get ready for bed.  I’ve had a super long day of traveling and am exhausted.  I’ll be back with more tomorrow.  Have a great night!