Wednesday, 31 December 2014

DIY Rose and Chamomile Milk Bath

Hello, again! The weather here in London has turned a fair bit chillier in these final days of December and I have a small feeling that we may even see some snow soon. Though I can't claim to be much of a fan of cold weather, I do enjoy those cosy evenings in at home where you can snuggle down with a good book or luxuriate with a relaxing bath. 

In recent years, as I've become more accustomed to the stresses of adult life, I have come to appreciate the power of bath products more. But as much I like buying bath lotions and potions, I like making them even more. They make such adorable gifts too and can easily be customised to suit the tastes of the person. 

This milk bath is perfectly suited for these winter months when lots of us can be afflicted by dry skin. Many of us have heard of the stories of Cleopatra bathing in milk to keep her skin soft and young. This recipe also uses rose and chamomile, both of which have soothing properties. They are known in particular for calming skin which is sensitive or inflamed by conditions such as eczema or acne. Rose especially is a very popular ingredient in home beauty regimes from the Indian sub-continent. Also in this recipe, I have added epsom salt, which is naturally high in magnesium, and great for flushing out toxins and easing muscle pain.

Friday, 26 December 2014

Simple Chicken Curry

Did you know that Bangladeshis run 85-90% of all Indian restaurants in the UK? Despite the notoriety attached to curry strips like Brick Lane, the amount of authentic Bangladeshi cuisine out there  remains limited. Enter me. I am here to bring you a taste of some real Bangladeshi home cooking that has been handed down through the generations. And let me tell you this, home cooking is 150% better than anything you will try in an Indian restaurant.

Let's start off with my version of an everyday chicken curry, which is found in most Bangladeshi households. This is something that can easily be adapted to include lots of other vegetables, such as potato, with a few tweaks. As it is an everyday curry, it does not feature any heavy creams or sauces and can easily be knocked up in an hour. This curry is packed with flavour and the gentle heat is perfect to warm you up in these cold winter evenings.  

It all starts off with a few simple ingredients. Onion, garlic and ginger are our staples for any meat or chicken curry base along with a few ground spices. My three whole spices, cinnamon, bay leaves and cardamon are also always included in any curry including meat or chicken. The three add a sweetness and fragrance that complements the heat of the chilli powder.