Sparkling Ginger Lime & Mint Cooler

Sparkling Ginger Lime & Mint Cooler

These are fabulous recipes from Modern Indian cookbook , written by my new friend and famous chef, Hari Nayak. If you are new to Indian cooking, this is absolutely the perfect book to start with. The recipes are simple, elegant and uses ingredients you can find in most supermarkets.

Sparkling Ginger Lime Cooler

serves 6

1 (3-inch) piece peeled fresh ginger, grated on microplane grater
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh mint leaves
1/2 cup fresh lime juice (about 6 limes)
6 cups sparking water or club soda
1/2 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
Pinch of freshly ground black pepper

In a blender, blend together all the ingredients, except ice. Strain and serve over lots of ice. You can also add gin or vodka too!

Sweet Yogurt Sundae with Saffron & Pomegranate

Yes, this is the same yogurt sundae from November. Remember when I slept with Rocco?

My favorite source for saffron is a company called, where you’ll find a better quality of the spice at least 10 times cheaper than at your local market. You can judge the quality of the saffron by just looking at it. Pure saffron is red and only includes the style. If you see any yellow or orange on the thread, then you’re paying for the stigma which is colorless, tasteless and aromaless. Get the good stuff, as you are only using a pinch of the spice.

Sweet Yogurt Sundae with Saffron & Pomegranate

Serves 8

4 cups plain yogurt
1/4 cup honey
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 pomegranate
2 kiwis
large pinch of saffron strands

Line a large sieve or colander with cheesecloth. Place colander over a bowl. Place yogurt in colander to drain for 2-3 hours in the refrigerator. Discard the water (or whey.) Turn the yogurt into a bowl and mix in the honey, nutmeg and cardamom. Lightly toast the saffron strands in a small dry skillet over medium heat, until brittle. Let saffron cool on plate and with your fingers, finely crush the strands. Cut kiwi into small pieces and remove the seeds from the pomegranate. Layer yogurt, fruit and saffron in dessert cups.


Photo time!

Here are the photos that led up to the money shot. I’m still not happy with these photos, but take a look. And !@(*$&!$! what’s going on with the soggy, mushy colors??? They look perfectly vibrant to me loaded from my computer, but then it gets to the web and BAM! the photos look drunk. I’m using same monitor to view both. argh.

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Comments 64

  1. katy

    the last time i was really, really mad at my fiance, i woke up at about 8 am on a saturday morning and baked bread. i think i kneaded it for about ten times as long as i should have, but it 1) got rid of a lot of my anger, and 2) still tasted good. πŸ™‚

  2. LunaPierCook

    I used to receive those kinds of blow-ups in my previous marriage but fortunately neither Mary nor I are programmed that way. Still, we understand some people are. Just an FYI, if’n you need an ear to bend (about anything, even kids!) we want you to know either of us are just a phone call away.

    As for the photos, maybe kicking up the Gamma and then the Hue/Saturation in PS CS2 or newer might help? I always have that problem with WordPress, but this is the first time I’ve seen it in your pics.

  3. Peter G

    Lovely drink and it sounds so refreshing

    In regards to your pics, it could be browser dependant. Firefox tends to wash images out whereas Safari will give a more accurate colour cast. Maybe you need to calibrate your monitor…it could be any of these.

    Keep up the great work.

  4. Claudia (cook eat FRET)

    that drink is brilliant
    what a wonderful cocktail…

    as for fights and kids and life
    i’m older now. even wiser.
    love and health is where it’s at…
    let all the other bullshit go
    and be forgiving cause we’re all just silly little humans
    even if it’s not your fault

  5. argus

    Ginger always perks me up. I crush some and put them in with cubed sweet potato and some water and raw sugar to boil till the potato’s soft — a comforting hot-soupy dessert for lonely rainy nights.

    I so feel for you in your tiff. Sometimes guys just think they’re absolutely jackassly right and that they’ve every right to tell us off even though they know deep down that it’d upset us — when they’re as flawed and full of foibles as we are.

  6. Suzie

    That is a great book, I bought it last year on a wim via amazon without even looking at it in the flesh, trusting the reviews. There are some amazing dishes in this book with a twist to traditional Indian Food.
    Hope all is well with you and your family.

  7. Jeremy

    I feel your pain, I cook even when I am not mad, and Bebel Gilberto is great for cooking, but a little Ramones goes a long way!

  8. cindy

    i love indian food! those both sound great, and the drink looks very refreshing. lime and mint, how can you go wrong there, yum! hope all is well.

  9. Melinda

    Ouuu, I like the look of that drink. Just a wee bit of gin too please. Ta!

    You need a hammer, Jaden. It could accidentally slip while you were gardening and whack his BBQ. Is that too vicious?

  10. texicali

    What a wonderful looking drink. My kids will love it too!

    Usually I pound the heck out of my piano, but I’m going to try cooking up something in the kitchen instead. But then, wait, he’d benefit from that wouldn’t he?

    You are truly inspiring though!

  11. Mike

    I hope all is well!

    As for the food, those both sound like a really tasty treat! I’m always looking for new Indian sorts of flavors to play around with, so I’ll have to give these a try

  12. threemilechild

    Hey, I won saffron from in a contest here a while back — and I just thought I’d comment that it really is absolutely as wonderfully stupendous as Jaden says. And their vanilla is awesome, too.

    (That’s all!)

  13. joanne

    I get mad and bake. He can never stay away from fresh baked desserts. I’m gonna get my revenge through cholesterol. The dummy can’t just ignore me when it’s dinner time. The man can’t cook on the fly. Also if you are still feeling vindictive, jab him with your tweezers in the middle of the night.

  14. mimi

    first, good wishes for andrew. second, killer looking drink! third, baking is often times the CAUSE of my fights with mr. mimi. he is professionally trained, so a messy kitchen drives him crazy. i, on the other hand, find it more efficient for my lazy ass to clean up all at once at the end. many a nagging, sometimes a “get the F out of the kitchen!” and once i threw a cheesecake at him. but it’s all good πŸ™‚

  15. blondee47

    i have not been commenting recently, tho i am reading every blog, because of having to put on an entire mouth full of orthodontic braces and unless it is blended I still cannot chew.

    but this i can make….AND if you truly love ur kids you will put braces on their teeth when the dentist tells you to – hear that mom I blame you…

    do we ever stop blaming our parents? Never….however I am sorry to hear of Andrew’s MRI…email me and I will tell u a story about when my little one had to have a neurology test and thank god my mother was there because that day I lived and died and lived again all in a four hour period….twenty years ago and i am not sure they even had MRI’s for that back then

  16. Kelley Smith

    Glad Andrew is ok. Glad the fight is over. Enjoying your beautiful photography. They don’t look too mushy to me.
    Makes me thirsty though.

  17. Nicole

    Did it ever occur to you that Scott might ruffle your feathers because he wants to help you come up with some new recipes? Or blog fodder?

    You’ll have to pay attention next time and see if his annoying behavior occurs after you’ve made a comment that you need to come up with a new recipe!


  18. courtney

    I’m relieved to hear Andrew is fine and the storm with Scott passed over!I can only imagine the wreak you were. That sundae and drink sound fab. And your photos are outstanding. You react like I do when the men get mad. Get creative , wait, and somewhat pasivly reach out. Before all is done its in the past.

  19. caroline

    Wow, what a week. I’m glad to hear that things are better and that Andrew is fine. Hugs to you.

    What wonderful pictures you have! I really want some of the sweet yogurt sundae. I love the fruit on top! The colors are great!

  20. Deepa

    So glad Andrew is OK..Sending you and Andrew hugs and prayers. My 1-yr old son says “Huggs” to Andrew’s pix πŸ™‚ Your site is wonderful! Its my early morning (hehe…and pretty much bi-hourly) fix at work!

  21. casadelun

    When we get in a fight, he avoids me and doesn’t eat my food, no matter how tasty it is. That’s stubborness for you. Lots of food get spoiled during this time, and I’m more sad because I cannot finish the loaf of bread by myself and have to throw it away. Throwing away good food, that just makes me more angry….

  22. meeso

    :)) “cheap blender vibrates across the counter.” These dishes do look delicious as I’m a lil bit of a fan of Indian food myself πŸ˜‰

  23. lifeinrecipes

    Happy to hear both situations seem for the most part to be bygones. That drink is making me thirsty. I’ll take one with a shot of Hendricks, please. Cheers.

  24. Audrey

    That’s why they say Men are from Mars! :)))

    But I totally agree with comment #6; and when things have calmed down, he will be extra sweet toward you. When that sort of stuff happened to me, I got up and walked away, and kept my cool. Minutes later, I received an apology via email (took place during morning breakfast & leaving for work).

    That drink looks really yum, hope you enjoyed every sip of it! Put a big smile on your face, Cheers!

  25. Ivy Brown

    My thoughts have been with you and your little boy. Here’s hoping he is well.

    In the meantime, I would gladly share that yummy looking drink with you! Bottoms up!

  26. Eat Me Outta Here

    It’s so funny when I’m angry or unhappy my food usually reflects they way I feel. The food I make is the window to my soul. I think me, angry, in the kitchen with a sharp knife is dangerous!

  27. Helen

    There are very few things quite as stressful as having a loved one with a health crisis. Not having kids, I’m just extrapolating from parents and siblings, so I can only sort of imagine. But looks like you’ve got something tasty with which to toast the fact that your head has stopped exploding. We’re all sending good thoughts your way.

  28. mochachocolata rita

    cooking is better, cheaper, more productive & less expensive than many other kinds of therapy (especially retail therapy at luxury shopping malls) ^_^

    come on! kiss and make up already!

  29. Donald

    That drink sounds great. It may be a wee bit sweet for my taste, but my wife’s taste, on the other hand, would swoon for it. I’m mad at her right now by the way. All will be better now that we’ve slept on it. I empathize. I would suggest never letting things fester though. It is almost never worth it.

  30. Susan

    Awww, men can be frustrating to be sure but gotta live with ’em, warts and all. Though, we give as good as we get (pardon the grammar). πŸ™‚ Glad to hear it wasn’t serious with Andrew. And, despite the “mushy” colors, the drink still looks fantastic!

  31. Patricia Scarpin

    Oh, sweetie, what a coincidence – I’m mad at my husband today, too. I almost didn’t make him breakfast. πŸ™‚

    Ginger and lime ? That is surely refreshing!

  32. JadedOne

    Yeesh Jaden… it sucks to get into squabbles with hubbies huh? I recently had one with my hubby. I’m stubborn, he’s stubborn. That’s why we’re perfect for each other haha! Yeah right… anyway. When I get mad at him, I do the dishes. There’s something about scorching hot water, bubbles and cleaning that is so theraputic. It also does wonders for making him feel guilty enough to apologize first haha!

    I’m also glad that Andrew is healthy. That’s such a scary thing to have to deal with huh? He deserves lotsa desserts for being such a cute little boy!

  33. JadedOne

    Oh yeah… I thought I’d share this story with you since it’s somewhat comical and hopefully cheer you up.

    Last week, my hubby and I went to the grocery store to buy ice cream and dinner fixins. I always get the good stuff because I very rarely get a sweet tooth and when I do, it demands high qwalitee sweets. I end up getting a pint of Ben & Jerry’s Cinnamon Bun ice cream.

    A couple nights ago, I was having a massive sugar craving attack so I went to the freezer to grab some ice cream. I poke my head in further to dig around for it. Where the hell is it?? OMG, wait…. did hubby eat it? I’m gonna be livid if he did.. I dig around the trash and end up finding the empty container in the recycle bin. Sneaky little bastard. He hid the evidence in the recycle.

    This was the third time that this exact thing has happened. He was out at dinner with some friends and didn’t have his phone so I couldn’t call him on it. When he got home… the conversation went like this:

    Me: You’re in trouble.
    Hubby: Why?
    Hubby: Oh *puts on puppy dog face*
    Me: Oh come on, you knew I’d be mad. You better fess up.
    Hubby: Sowwwwie.
    Me: You’re buying me new ice cream.

    I mean what the hell? If he knew I was gonna be mad, why’d he eat it all? Sheesh..

    So currently, he’s taking me out to a really good Mexican place in my favorite part of town. We’re getting ice cream afterwards. Also, I guess he felt so guilty that he also booked reservations for one of my favorite restaurants for Sunday. Keke….

  34. Meg

    MRI? Scary, even if he is okay. Hospital words and family (esp children) shouldn’t be in the same sentence together. This drink looks fantastic (and not too far off of ginger beer, only lighter, it looks), but… oy. Sometimes, there have got to be happier ways to inspiration. I think if an MRI was involved with one of my babies, I would add gin AND vodka.

  35. Shankari

    Hugs to Andrew πŸ™‚ and you need some too. I used to order sweetened lime soda with ginger in India all the time. I own a copy of Hari Nayak’s cook back and is just fab. I am going to be teaching a few of his recipes in my class too

  36. Amy

    About the photo colors –

    Photoshop and most internet browsers use two different color spaces. Browsers use sRGB while photoshop uses “regular” RGB. You can change your default color settings in Photoshop from Edit > Color Settings, or you can convert the picture manually to sRGB to preview it from Edit > Convert to Profile.

    Hope that helps!

  37. Elaine

    Hey Jaden,

    I am glad to hear that everything is okay with Andrew. He’s such a cutie pie.

    That ginger lime mint cooler looks delicious – I remember when I made food to self-soothe. It’s always therapeutic. I don’t have any tips for photography, I’m afraid I’m trigger happy with my camera until my eyes tell me they’re right lol.

    Anyhow, take care you πŸ™‚

  38. MYF

    The drink looks great! Wud be soo perfect for Penang’s darn HOT weather…
    Yeah I know – ”fights” or whateva we all call it – hate them… but we love each other and forgive and forget is the best way to go, no?

  39. The Spotted Apron

    yum! wow…both look great. the ginger lime mint cooler looks so refreshing. perfect b/c it’s finally getting warm enough here to desire a cool drink. i do a lot of yogurt for lunch and this looks great!

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