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A Gift, A Giving Community, Announcing A Holiday Giveaway And A Hot Cup Of Chai

From Sonal-Simply Vegetarian 777

From Sonal-Simply Vegetarian 777

I follow many blogs, I love them all and try my best to read and comment or at least like every one or as close as I can get to acknowledging them. One blog I love and follow is Sonal’s beautiful Simply Vegetarian777, chock full of delicious recipes and gorgeous photography it is one of those blogs that takes your breath away. Sonal also happens to be one of the sweetest and kindest individuals you will ever know and although we have never met in person I feel like we are close friends albeit virtual, she has touched my life and my kitchen with her generosity. This is the second batch of spices she has sent me, thank you my friend. I saw this recipe on her site a few weeks back and immediately commented how I had to make it it just sounds incredible. It’s an Indian breakfast dish called Bread Poha. Now I am challenged in the spicing department, I notoriously underspice and have become befuddled when faced with a recipe that uses many different spices in one dish. Sonal knowing me and seeing my plight sent me pre measured spice packets, everything the spicing challenged will need to put together a scrumptious meal and I must add that she included detailed instructions. Sonal, market these please I will be your first customer.

I was the lucky recipient previously of some of her genius spice blends and made this Kofta Korma which literally knocked my socks off, I followed her basic recipe for Korma adapting it to use meat.

How wonderful is our community of bloggers, most of us have never met each other, we visit and comment on each others blogs and become online friends and if we are lucky we get to meet each other. We lift each other up and encourage and in the case of dear Sonal, without asking or expecting anything she sends me the spice packets, but not just spices everything I need for pilaf incuding the rice and dal with the spices. I will be making dishes from each item she sent me and posting it here. The first will be the bread poho, it uses day (s) old bread which I don’t have so I am letting a baguette sit for a few days.

In the spirit of giving I wanted to announce that the last week of November there will be a giveaway which I am very excited about. It’s wonderful I won’t say what it is (surprises are fun) but I am sure you will all love it and it will be my gift to you, or at least one (or two) of you.

IMG_7463

Chai Tea

Sonal-Simply Vegetarian 777

1 cup water

3 tbs milk (I used half and half)

a good pinch of Sonal’s Chai Spice (it was about 1/2 tsp)

Black tea (either tea bag or loose tea

Sweetener of your choice

Bring the water, milk and spice to a rolling boil, add the tea and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Strain into a cup and enjoy!! Sweeten if you like. I added a spoonful of honey to mine.

As I type this I am enjoying a hot cup of chai and it’s absolutely delicious, the spices are perfection. Β I usually use a prepared chai tea but have to say making it this way with the spice mix produces a superior cup of chai. There is nothing like a hot cup of Chai to warm you on a cold day. Β Thank you Sonal!!

65 Comments Post a comment
  1. Sounds as though you have a wonderful blogging friend Suzanne! What a thoughtful gesture to send you spice packets. I can’t wait to read the upcoming recipes as I’m a little spice challenged myself πŸ˜‰

    November 9, 2015
    • It was so thoughtful thank you Heather. I love spice but really have a hard time getting it right which is why Sonal sending pre measured spices is brilliant.

      November 9, 2015
  2. Hi Suzanne, I have to agree blogging friends are the absolute best-Enjoy your gift package from Sonal! Cheryl

    November 9, 2015
  3. Dear Suzanne — Thank you so much for letting us be part of your expression of gratitude and joy. I have been lifted up right along with you. So thank you from me too, Sonal. πŸ™‚
    Even though today is my telework day, they managed to get me upset. So I do appreciate your post and sense of gratitude — It really did help me. And a cup of Chai tea sounds like just the thing right now! Mega hugs! πŸ˜€

    November 9, 2015
    • Awwww I hope that the rest of your day goes well dear lady!!
      Mega hugs back at ya ❀️❀️

      November 9, 2015
    • Oh Teagan, sorry your day is not going well. If I lived close I would bring you some Chai Hope the rest of your day is better and brighter. Thank you so much. Just remember how much happiness you bring to others with your wonderful writing.

      November 9, 2015
      • It makes me feel good to think that might be so — thank you. I have some chai… just need to take a break and make it. πŸ™‚

        November 9, 2015
      • Its the truth!

        November 9, 2015
  4. Dear Suzanne,
    I am so over whelmed with emotions right now. You have penned down so may beautiful expressions for me. Believe me when I say that I feel connected with you as well! Your warmth and charm reflects through your comments and blog! Your presence on my blog makes my post worth while.
    I am soooo glad that you enjoyed the tea chai!!
    Happy Holidays dear lady!!
    November is the month of gratitude and being thankful and I am thankful for being a part of this wonderful community here! πŸ™πŸ™β€οΈβ€οΈ

    November 9, 2015
    • Sonal you need to know how much your gift means to me. Thank you so much. I am thrilled and honored to receive your spices and just hope I can do them justtice when I make them, Thank you so much.

      November 9, 2015
    • You have many friends Sonal and I agree with Suzanne. You are a great person!

      November 9, 2015
      • Awww you melt my heart Julie!
        It’s my pleasure to know you!!!

        November 9, 2015
  5. Dev #

    Great blog. I love reading!

    November 9, 2015
  6. This is SO lovely, Suzanne. And, Sonal, wow. You sent hugs in a box. πŸ™‚ Isn’t it wonderful to connect like y’all have? And you and I too, Suz. That day at the Brooklyn Flea was such fun. Know you’ll be eating and drinking well with this goodie box. xo

    November 9, 2015
    • Yes it’s wonderful and I am so glad that we got to meet, hoping we can meet again one day. I just made some roasted pear butter using the chai spice and it’s out of this world. Thanks Em.

      November 9, 2015
      • Woohoo pear butter with chai mix? That sound exotic!!

        November 9, 2015
      • Oh wow!! That sounds amazing!!!!

        November 9, 2015
    • Suzanne is such a darling and you will agree with me, won’t ya? πŸ˜€β€οΈ

      November 9, 2015
      • The pear butter is so good and simple I only made one jar but now want more. I have to get more pears. The chai spice with the pears, vanilla, brown sugar and some Poire William is really a wonderful combination.

        November 9, 2015
      • I need the recipe for that butter Suzanne!
        Is it on the blog?

        November 9, 2015
      • I am going to post it tomorrow. It’s so wonderful I am going to have to make more, the chai spice makes it out of this world good.

        November 9, 2015
      • πŸ˜€β€οΈ

        November 9, 2015
  7. Aww, what a sweet gesture from Sonal. I love how they are all individually packed and labelled, you definitely can’t go wrong. I’ll have to bug her for some chai spice, we were talking the other day about cardamom tea or masala chai, and she was in the process of making it, I guess it must be ready now :). Would love to see what you make of the rest of the spices, the mind boggles :). You are absolutely right, we’ve created such a wonderful close-knit community via blogging, and you so deserve the attention you are getting too Suzanne, you’ve always been so kind and welcoming to everyone. Would love to throw my name in the hat for your holiday giveaway too, although gosh I almost forgot again, I’ve yet to receive the contents of the one I won :). Oh well, it seems so long ago now, she’s probably forgotten. Enjoy your chai Suzanne, and have a great week.

    November 9, 2015
    • Thanks so much Loretta, it was such a wonderful surprise getting the spices from Sonal. I can’t wait to make the Bread Poha, it really looks delicious. I just made some roasted pear butter with chai spice and it’s amazing. Regarding the box you won, I just sent another email to Mary Frances asking if they sent the box, if it was sent and you didn’t get it they would have to re send another one right away. Very sorry about that, I am waiting to hear back and will email you when I hear from them. I am so sorry.

      November 9, 2015
      • Oh not to worry Suzanne, I just remembered about it when I read about your give away…like I said before, I never win anything, so I was excited :). The Pear butter sounds amazing, I’m sure the chai spice added some gorgeous flavors.

        November 9, 2015
      • I will let you know when I hear back. I am sure it’s just an oversight but I worry it was sent to the wrong address or something.

        November 9, 2015
    • Loretta chai spice mix is ready and some other spice mixes too!
      Email me your address @ sonalgupta2001@hotmail.com πŸ˜€πŸ˜‰β€οΈβ€οΈ

      November 9, 2015
  8. Susan Pridmore #

    Hi Suzanne!

    I couldn’t get my comment to register, but wanted to say I love Chai. I recently switched from coffee (for the most part) to Chai and am always on the hunt for different chai spices. They vary so much! Are the spices Sonal uses on her website?

    xo

    Susan Pridmore

    The Wimpy Vegetarian

    Blog: http://thewimpyvegetarian.com Facebook: The Wimpy Vegetarian Twitter: @wimpyvegetarian Pinterest: Susan Pridmore Instagram: wimpyvegetarian

    >

    November 9, 2015
    • I think she will be posting it Susan. It is just a perfect balance of spices. I could easily become addicted to this Chai. The chai spiced pear butter I made is so good I am just eating by the spoonful. Thank you!

      November 9, 2015
    • Susan,
      I can send some spice mix for you to test and try and if you like it, you can order for more πŸ˜€…

      November 9, 2015
  9. I agree, Sonal truly is a wonderful person! I have learned so much about spices from her blog. I’ve made several of her recipes and they always turn out perfect. Lovely that you posted such a warm thank you to her. πŸ™‚

    November 9, 2015
    • Thank you Seana, Sonal is so generous. Her recipes are perfect and delicious. Just so happy to know her.

      November 9, 2015
    • Seana, my curry spice mix will
      Be ready by next week and will send you across as promised 😘😘❀️❀️

      November 9, 2015
  10. Sandhya #

    Suzanne,
    So heart warming to read about having these amazing friends thru blogging. I consider myself fortunate to have made these friends, including you. I have always admired you and Sonal too. I love how Sonal;s thoughtful,handwritten note has accompanied the packets!
    And did you say surprise? I am throwing my name in the hat too! I love surprises!

    November 9, 2015
    • It’s such a great group!! Thanks so much Sandhya!! I will be posting soon it should be fun, I love the holidays.

      November 9, 2015
      • Sandhya #

        It really is a very very nice group! I agree.

        November 9, 2015
  11. Sandy girl 😘😘❀️❀️

    November 9, 2015
  12. I can practically smell the chai now, Suzanne! What a wonderful gift! Thank you for “publicly” recognizing Sonal… I think we’re always on the hunt for special blogs to follow and support. Based on your recommendation, I’ve already gone over to visit her site. It’s just as beautiful and delicious as you described. Thank you again for the introduction!

    November 9, 2015
    • It really is amazing, such beautiful photography and even more amazing recipes. I am not vegetarian but love to eat vegetarian meals and I also love how easily I can adapt her recipes when I want to add meat. The instructions are spot on all the time.

      November 9, 2015
  13. Dear Suzanne, I agree with your sentiments regarding the lovely blogger friends we’ve made. You are one of them that I admire. I have been fortunate to have met one in person and it was as if we knew each other for a long time.
    How kind and thoughtful of Sonal to send you ingredients/spices not because you asked for them, but out of her kind heart, which is so apparent in her writings and presentations. Now, I’ll be looking forward to your creation(s) using the spices… although, the chai represents the first production. πŸ™‚

    November 9, 2015
    • We are fortunate to know each other and partake in each others lives even though on a virtual level. Thank you for your kind words Fae, I count myself very lucky to know you and am constantly amazed at your knowledge and skill and kindness. Thank you so much.

      November 10, 2015
  14. What a great post Suzanne. Sonal is indeed a generous sweet spirit. You are such a great friend to so many bloggers too. I always feel a little amazed how people can connect and make friends in this vast network.

    November 9, 2015
    • It’s amazing right Julie, if we ever met in person I know I would already feel like I know you. Thank you so much.

      November 10, 2015
      • Thank you Suzanne! I have only met one blogging friend and it was exactly like that and I know it would be the same with you.

        November 10, 2015
      • It would be that Julie. Hope it happens one day!

        November 10, 2015
  15. The online community can be so fantastic Suzanne. That the friendships we make are virtual they are none the less real as I’ve been lucky enough to discover. I hope you enjoy your new recipe.
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

    November 10, 2015
    • I can never discount the virtual friendships that have been established through blogging and David you are among my closest friends and I am so happy to know you. thank you so much.
      Mega hugs my friend.

      November 10, 2015
  16. Reblogged this on ravenhawks' magazine and commented:
    Oh my I love Chai Tea, tried the recipe and it was worth doing a little jig around the kitchen thank you.

    November 10, 2015
  17. how sweet Suzanne! This warms my heart and you are a special lady!!

    November 11, 2015
  18. You’re so right Suzanne, the blogging community is incredibly warm and wonderful. So lovely of Sonal to send you this package to make a variety of beautiful spiced creations from. Looking forward to each of your posts to come.

    November 16, 2015
    • It really is such a warm and welcoming community. I still have to make the dishes that go with the spice packs that Sonal sent. I am running so far behind and with Thanksgiving creeping up on us I am really busy. Thanks so much Margot.

      November 18, 2015
  19. So true dear, the blogging community is awesome – even though most have never met. We share an amazing bond. Glad you enjoy our Chai πŸ‘πŸΌ

    December 19, 2015
    • I love Chai, yes we bloggers are a close knit community and although few have met in person it feels like we have. Thank you so much.

      December 19, 2015

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