Friday, July 31, 2009

Keera (Cucumber) Halwa




I try to watch some of the cookery shows and this recipe was noted down during one of the telecasts of Mallika Badrinath. I missed the introduction part of the recipe. All I could gather was, this is a Mangalore special sweet and she in fact mentioned the traditional name of it, which sounded like a tongue twister to me. I had written in my book as Kheera sweet. I call it halwa now, because of the texture of the sweet. I am not sure if it has to be this way or not. A sweet is a sweet. I would like to know the real name of it from my readers.


On first bite, my husband said, it reminds him of Thiruvathirai kali. I too felt the same. May be its due to the common rice and jaggery mix. Anyways on to the recipe now.


You need

Medium sized cucumber- 1, peeled and grated
Powdered jaggery - 1 1/2 cup
Rice flour - 1 cup
Grated coconut - 1/2 cup
Ghee - 2 tblspoon
Roasted cashews for garnish

The orginal recipe says use raw rice. It has to be soaked for 2 hrs. I used rice flour instead. Grind the rice flour(or soaked rice), jaggery and coconut to a fine paste. You can sprinkle some waterwhile grinding. Stir in the grated cucumber. The batter consistency should be like that of idli batter. Adjust the consistency by adding water. Not much will be required since it will be taken care of the water in the cucumber.


Heat a kadai with a tablespoon of ghee. Pour the batter. Keep stirring and add ghee at intervals to prevent sticking. This should take around 10 minutes. When it comes together, pour onto a greased plate and press it down evenly. When warm, mark into squares and decorate with roasted cashews.

After tasting the sweet, I felt the batter will make good pancakes/ vella dosai.


This is my contribution to Sia's RCI-Udupi & Mangalore, an event started by Lakshmi

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Khaman Dhokla for Indian Cooking Challenge



Its dhokla time today. Khaman dhokla is the recipe selected for the first challenge. Srivalli gave the detailed recipe from a Gujarathi friend of hers, which is indeed a fool-proof recipe. I have made instant versions of dhokla both in my MW and stove top. But it was no way near the perfect, soft,spongy, moist dhoklas I had eaten before. My husband occassionaly used to buy dhoklas from a Gujarathi sweet shop near his office. When Valli mentioned that its a traditional recipe, I was happy to try it out to get the perfect dhoklas. I prepared it carefully following the instructions given in the recipe. When I served them with the mint chutney, my husband said gave a thumps up, which doesn't come, that easily.

I used buttermilk instead of curd and water. Also had to add 2 more tablespoons of the batter to get the right consistency. Rest everything I followed the same.

Recipe makes 20 medium sized pieces

For Batter:
Bengal Gram flour / Besan - 1 & 1/2 cup
Curd - 1/2 cup (not very sour)
Water - 1/2 cup
(I used 1 cup of buttermilk + 2 tblspns of water)
Cooking Soda - 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste

For seasoning to be mixed to the batter (to be added just before cooking)
Oil - 1 tbsp
Turmeric a pinch
G. Chili paste - 3 nos
Sugar - 1 tsp
Citric acid - quarter tsp ( A big pinch)
Eno - 1 packet (green colour fruit lime) + sprinkle or dust few bits on the plate

For tempering
Sesame seeds , Mustard Seeds,Curry leaves,Grated coconut,Coriander leaves
Little water ( 2 tblspn) + Oil to be topped on dhoklas

Method to prepare:
Mix first 1/2 cup curds with 1/2 water. To this add the besan and mix well to get a lump less batter, the consistency should be of idli batter, more of dropping not pouring consistency. Slowly add more water if needed else, add the soda. Keep it aside to rise for 1 hour.

If you are using a pressure cooker, fill the pan with water, place a plate over which you will have use a plate for steaming the dhoklas. Thali plate can be used for steaming.

To the batter mix in the citric acid, oil, salt, sugar, green chili paste and turmeric powder. Mix well. This has to be done just before pouring to the plate.

Meanwhile have the pan on stove, and let the water start boiling. When the water reaches the rolling stage, you can mix the eno to the batter (Save little of eno for dusting on the plate), mix gently, you will see bubbles coming out.

Dust or sprinkle the plate with eno. Then immediately pour the batter to the plate. Place the plate carefully inside the pressure pan and cover with lid. You need not use the whistle. After covering you will find steam coming out of the outlet, simmer and don't disturb for almost 5 -7 minutes.

After 5 -7 minutes, remove the lid and proof it using toothpick or knife. If the knife comes out clean and does not have any batter sticking, then its done. Cover back and let it remain on flame for 1 min and switch off the gas and allow it for 5 minutes.

In a bowl, mix 2 tblspn of water along with a tsp of oilRemove the plate from the pan, pour the water and oil mix over the top.

For seasoning, heat a pan with oil, add curry leaves, sesame seeds, mustard seeds and finely chopped green chilies. When mustard starts popping, remove and pour over the dhokla.


Points to note
The batter should be filled to only 1/2 as it will rise up. After adding eno the batter should not rest.
Amount of sugar can be increased on preference.
If you want perfect shaped ones and not the crumbling, cut and handle gently
Dhokla can also be steamed in kadai filled with water and a plated titled over it.


Green chutney
G. chili - 4 nos
Grateed coconut - 1/4 cup
Coriander - bunch
Few mint leaves
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Lime -1 big
Salt to taste

Take all the ingredients except coriander in a food processor. Grind to a smooth paste.
Then add the coriander and again grind. Remove to a bowl, add the remaining lime and serve with Dhoklas.

Little Egg Tarts

I miss the egg tarts in my hometown. The crumbly pastry with the smooth yet creamy egg custard is just right to my taste. They said the "siew bao" is nice but I find their egg tarts is a winner. Anyway, I can't have it here so I've to make it myself. It's hardly get the same texture as the one I ate unless the owner of the shop give me the recipe which is definitely impossible. Well.... I refer back to the recipe of shortcrust pastry that I normally used and combine one of the egg fillings recipe from the website. I make it into small sizes by using a super small muffin pan that I bought from car boot sale. The shortcrust pastry was just nice but the texture of the egg fillings is not what I want. It's a bit firm and more like jelly type. I'm looking for the smooth, gooey and creamy one. One of the chef said, adding some evaporated milk would be nicer, may be I shall try it another time. If you've got any good recipe please let me know. I hunger for it!!
Anyway, my friend loves it so much and ask me to teach her to make this tarts. I purposely bake the pastry in light color rather than golden brown but the heating system of my oven makes some of it in light yellow color and some turn into dark brown color. That's very annoying! However, it mini size is a cutey. For ladies, you'll need two bites whereas it's just a mouthful for man!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

July Notes from The Kitchen Sisterhood

Dear Friends,

So much crosses our desks and our microphones. Only so much of it makes it to the air. Here are some collaborations and projects that have recently caught our attention we thought you'd want to know about.

Keep the faith,

The Kitchen Sisters

Archives we're visiting
Free Music Archive. "It's not just free music, it's good music."

Rock'n'Roll Public Library: A five-week free archival "civic endeavor" of The Clash's Mick Jones. "These 10,000 items are relics of the last century. A part of British musical history." London, July 16-August 25
Books in our pile
Plenty Enough Suck to Go Around by Cheryl Wagner

Farm City by Novella Carpenter

I-5 by Summer Brenner

Hunger for Freedom: The Story of Food in the Life of Nelson Mandela
by Anna Trapido

Elizabeth Street by Laurie Fabiano

How to Play the Harmonica: and Other Life Lessons by Sam Barry

Mirrors by Eduardo Galeano

Labor Day by Joyce Maynard
Events on our Calendar
Puckerbrush Potluck, Iowa State Fair, August 19

Eat Real Festival in downtown Oakland, August 28-30. A tribal gathering of taco trucks, hot dog stands, and mobile food vendors all using locally sourced sustainable ingredients.

Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music, Santa Cruz, CA, August 2-16. Marin Alsop conducts.
Movies to see
Tetro

Corner Store: A work-in-progress documentary feature

Away We Go, written by Dave Eggers and Vendela Vida of 826 Valencia
Websites we're browsing
Obama Foodorama

Irresistible Fleet of Bicycles

Mapping Main Street: A collaborative documentary media project that creates a new map of the country through stories, photos and videos recorded on actual Main Streets.

Yes, We Can: A community canning project
Music on our turntable
Lura, a singer from Portugal and Cape Verde

Orquestra Imperial from Brazil. A Samba big band fronted by Caetano Veloso's son Moreno and his friends Alexandre Kassin and DomĂȘnico Lancelotti

High Wide and Handsome. Loudon Wainwright III's tribute to Charlie Poole

Darling Just Walk by Tess Dunn

Dai Lam Linh. Our friend Nguyen Qui Duc sent us this startling new music from Vietnam.
Organizations we're tracking
Share Our Strength's Operation Frontline in Los Angeles

Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment

Carecen: Central American Resource Center Cuerpo Sano/Healthy Bodies Program

CCROPP: Central California Regional Obesity Prevention Program

Music National Service Initiative, a new social enterprise that supports and expands the use of music to meet important civic and social goals.
Rest In Peace
Artist, David Ireland

Activist, Luke Cole

Actor, Luis Saguar
"People need stories in hard times. We’ve had an enormous moral, spiritual, and economic collapse. People go to storytellers when times are like that." -Bruce Springsteen

"The Kitchen Sisters have done some of the best radio stories ever broadcast" -Ira Glass

Radio producers we hope you'll support
The Kitchen Sisters. Click here to donate.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Recipes of Maa-vilakku Neivedyam

In my previous post, I have written the pooja to be done for the maa vilakku. Here I am giving the recipes of the dishes made for neivedyam.

Pachha Maavu - Dough to make the lamp





Ingredients
Raw rice/Pacharisi - 2 1/2 cups
Powdered jaggery - 1 cup + 3 tblspn

Wash and soak rice in water for 2-3 hrs. Drain and spread on a towel to dry. Powder in the mixer grinder and sieve the ground powder to get fine rice flour. Grind the coarse rice again and continue until few tablespoons of coarse rice is left.

Grind the powdered jaggery and fine rice flour together. Transfer the rice flour and jaggery mix to a bowl. Keep mixing them by your hand and you should be able to make a ball of it. It might look as thought you cannot hold the flour together. Don't add jaggery since it will not end up in a stiff dough later. Its by the warmth of the hand that the flour and jaggery will come together. It requires some 20 minutes of constant kneading. If you are making the dough just for eating then more of jaggery will not be a problem. But since we need to light the lamp in it, it should be a stiff one else after few hours of burning the lamp, the jaggery in the dough will start melting and the lamp will lose the shape. We have the custom of placing two lamps. So divided the dough into two ball and shaped it well. While eating the maavu, its had along with coconut pieces.



Vella Kozhukaatai


Ingredients
Rice flour - 1 1/2 Cups
Powdered jaggery - 3/4 Cup
Water - 1 1/2 cups
Coconut chopped into tiny pieces - few

Mix jaggery in 1 1/2 cups of water in a bowl and heat it. When the jaggery is fully melt, strain to remove any dirt. Bring the jaggery syrup to a boil. Stir in the coconut pieces and a tablespoon of ghee. Slowly stir in the rice flour. Keep mixing to avoid lumps. Continue to cook till it is not sticky to touch and the dough will have shiny coat to it. Leave it to cool. Make small marble sized balls. Steam it for 10 minutes using an idly steamer or any steamer of your choice.




Paal Pongal





Ingredients
Raw rice - 3/4 cup
Roasted moong dal - 1/2 Cup
Jaggery - 3/4 cup
Water - 1/2 cup
Coconut milk extracted from one coconut.
Cardamom powder - 1/4 tspn

Extract two sets of milk from the coconut. To extract milk, grind the fresh, grated coconut with 1 cup of water. Squeeze to extract the milk. This is the first milk. Repeat grinding with another cup of water and extract the thinner second milk. Instead of coconut milk, ordinary milk can also be used.

Pressure cook rice and moong dal in 3 cups of water. It must have cooked mushy.
Make jaggery syrup by boiling water and jaggery. Bring the syrup to rolling boil. Slowly stir in the cooked rice+ dal mix to the boiling jaggery syrup. Keep stirring. It will start thickening. Add the second milk and continue to cook till the rice + dal absorbs the flavors. Stir in the thick first milk and cardamom powder. Remove from fire.



Pachharisi Idli - Idli with raw rice and urad dal
Raw rice - 1 cup
Urad dal - 1/2 cup
Salt

Usually idli is prepared by grinding soaked boiled rice/puzhungalarisi. When ever any bhakshanam is made for nivedyam, its customary to use raw rice. So since idli is offered as nivedyam, its made using raw rice.


Soak 1 cup of raw rice and urad dal separately, for 3 hrs. Drain and spread on a towel to dry. Powder the rice coarsely like rava. Grind urad dal into a smooth batter. Mix the rice rava and urad dal batter. Add salt and adjust the consistency by adding water. Leave it to ferment overnight. Scoop the batter into greased idli moulds and steam cook for 10-12 minutes. If rice is ground to a smooth batter, idlis will not turn soft and fluffy. For that reason, coarse rice is used.





The steamed goodies - Kozhukkattai and Idly are being part of the Steamed Treats organized by Shruti


Recipes from HHB

I like her blog very much because every time she gives very detail descriptions and all the recipes on her blog I've tried is unforgettable. I was inspired by her scones recipe recently. I like scones crazily, it's my all time favorites snacks. I've tried many scones recipe, all of them are yummy! I find the goodness of this recipe is quite low in fat.
Normally those scone recipes I've baked contain lots of butter whereas this is not. That's why I like to give it a try. Yes, it's not very buttery flavour on it. I added some raisin and chopped walnut to give it some sweetness and crunchy texture. It's good to eat!
I freezes some doughs so that's I can have fresh scones at anytime :P

The other recipe I've tried recently from HHB recipe is the banana bread. The goodness of the recipe are low in fat, low sugar and contain fifty percent of wholemeal flour.
The texture is like cakes and bread. As it contains little sugar, I eat it with some jam. When you think that it's healthy than those banana cake, it's nice to eat! Guilty free! All thanks to HHB recipes!

Badam Halwa - Almond Sweet

Badam Halwa (Almond Sweet) for Amma's Birthday
(lots of photos in here, so apologies for the slow download!)
Optimism, Child-like Enthusiasm, a Positive Mind, Cheerfulness, Creativity, Resilience, and an Amazing Patience - all Personified. That’s Chitra Amma for you! I have never seen her down for a long time and she will never loose her temper no matter what! (I have literally seen her flare up just once or twice – so you can imagine what kind aggravation can make that happen – and God save the aggravator!) I feel I live a very good life, because I like to think that there is maybe just a very tiny microgram of her qualities in me (okay..okay … I do loose my temper very often..and patience?? Whats that?)!
Today is Chitra Amma’s Birthday, and so this blog post and preparation is by me for her – to wish her a wonderful day and year ahead, and to thank her for being what she is! Hot Badam Halwa that melts in your mouth – what can be a more special dish for a special person? Well, amma is currently in Portland visiting my brother and sister-in-law, so she will just have to imagine this badam halwa, while I feast on it here! (I just need any excuse to indulge!)

I found this recipe in Vah Chef’s videos. Check the video here. Here are the quantities I used, and some of my learnings. I surprised myself, as it turned out absolutely delicious, aromatic and melts in your mouth – just like good halwas should!
Ingredients
Badam (Almonds) - 2 cups
Milk – 2 cups
Sugar – 2 cups (you can add more if you have a sweet tooth!)
Ghee – 2 cups
Saffron Strands – a pinch
Fresh cardamom powder – ½ tsp

Method
1. Boil Almonds for a few minutes until the skins are wrinkled. Immerse them in cold water. Remove the skins and discard.
2. Grind Almonds and milk together into a paste. You can stop just short of making a very fine paste – smooth as say idli batter. 3. Take a heavy bottomed vessel and heat ½ cup ghee on a low flame.
4. When the ghee has melted, add the badam and milk mixture. Stir well and begin cooking. Keep the flame in low through-out the preparation. As the mixture cooks, it will thicken.
5. Now add the sugar and one cup of ghee and stir and continue cooking. Be very careful not to burn the bottom, as even a slight browning can spoil the taste of badam halwa.
6. You will soon see small eruptions on the surface. This is what I call ‘volcanos and dimples stage’ and its real fun to see it happen!! Be very careful as this is really hot, and can burn your skin. Keep stirring to prevent burning!
7. The ‘volcanoes and dimples’ will subside, and the ghee will start separating from the halwa as the mixture cooks.
8. Now add the saffron, cardamom powder and the remaining ghee and continue stirring. The saffron will provide a lovely colour to the badam halwa. I don’t like adding colour to my cooking – else a drop of yellow food colour can make this ‘hotel style’! 9. Pour the halwa into a flat decorative tray (I just used a foil tray) – and make sure you take the first serving for yourself, and enjoy the ‘halwa’ of your labour!

My learnings:
a) Although this was the first time I tried this, it turned out absolutely delicious !
b) Badam quantity can be deceptive! Initially, I took only ½ the pack, and felt it would be too less. However, with the full pack (1 kilo), I landed up with a huge volume of halwa as you can see in the snaps! If you land up making too much – pack some off to your near and dear ones, and they will be super thrilled! I have therefore, halved the quantities in the recipe here!
c) Don’t be conservative with ghee. This is a rich dish, and if you do not add sufficient ghee, it will not taste good. Further, less ghee increases risk of the halwa sticking at the bottom of the vessel and burning. Ghee also allows the halwa to stay for a long time. My halwa has stayed at room temperature for a week now (Sydney is cold of course), and it is still fresh and good to go, after 10 secs in the micro!
d) Now since you are adding all that ghee, use a good quality ghee which smells fragnant! I buy high quality white butter, and make the ghee at home – as I am just not satisfied with store bought ghee!
e) Make sure you have high energy and are in the mood to cook, when you begin this venture!You will need to stir, and stir and stir continuously, and it takes nearly an hour to cook! If you relax, the halwa can burn in a second!
e) Motivate your spouse to help you with the stirring! Hubby and I took turns, so that we did not leave the halwa unsupervised for even a second!
f) Watch the Vah Chef’s video to learn the recipe and get entertained as well!!

Raw Rice Dosa(without fermentation)



I tried this yummy instant dosa recipe from Sankeerthanam. It tasted more like aapam. I had it with mysore rasam.

As I followed the recipe verbatim, you can click the above link for recipe.

Notes:The batter should be thinner than regular dosa batter but not as thin as rava dosa batter.
Pour the batter in a circular fashion starting from outside to inside. Allow the batter to spread by itself.
I also added 1/4 tsp of hing to the batter.

Mark Arax

For our most recent Hidden Kitchens piece, The Breadbasket Blues: A Central Valley Kitchen Story, we interviewed former Los Angeles Times reporter Mark Arax, author of the new book West of the West: Dreamers, Believers, Builders, and Killers in the Golden State. Take a listen to this web exclusive audio clip of Mark talking about family, food, and farms of the Central Valley: Listen.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Starting the Day


RASPBERRY OATMEAL

Serves  2

INGREDIENTS

1 cup quick oats
2 cups 2% percent milk
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup fresh raspberries
2 tablespoons red raspberry jam

INSTRUCTIONS

1) Put 1/2 cup oats in a microwave safe bowl.
2) Stir in 1/2 cup milk, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, and a dash of salt.
3) Microwave on medium heat for a 1 minute and 45 seconds (or until oats expand and soften).
4) Stir in 1 tablespoon of raspberry jam, 1/2 cup milk, and 1/2 cup raspberries.
5) Repeat steps to prepare second serving.  




Saturday, July 25, 2009

Maa Vilakku Poojai /Paachai For Mariyamman


"Aadi azhayakkum, Vishu thodaykkum" saying conveys the start and end of the festivals, during the year. With the arrival of Aadi/Karkidakam month, the festivities begin. Month long Ramayana reading is followed in many homes and all most all temples in Kerala, during the month of Karkidom. Visiting the temples of four brothers - Rama, Bharata,Lakshmana and Shatrugna in the order mentioned is also very common. (Popularly known as Naala Ambala Yatra). Maa-vilakku or Pachha Podal is another pooja which is performed during this month. This pooja is commonly done in Mariamman temples. Some families have the custom of performing it at home. I have grown up seeing this done at my home. Post marriage, it continued since my husband's family allows follows the custom. The procedure varies from family to family. I am writing down the procedure in detail here for my future reference.

Maa Vilakku is ideally performed on a Friday omitting the first and last Friday of the Aadi month. Alternatively, Sundays can be chosen if Fridays are not feasible for various reasons.

Kumbham,Kaarthaveerayan and Amman are kept. Draw maakolam (Rangoli made using rice paste) on the area where the pooja is to be done. Kumbham ( A pot shaped vessel made of brass) is filled with water and Neem leaves are kept in it. The Kumbham is placed on a thambalam with rice spread on it. Next to the kumbham on right, Place the Karthaveeryan (chooral/wooden stick). Tie a Pattu (silk cloth) on the top. in olden days, the stick is placed on a heap of rice grains. I have added few grains to the vessel where it is placed.


To the left, keep the Ammi Kozhavi (grinding stone) on a thambalam.





First, Abhishekam is done for Amman.
1) Nallennai/gingely oil
2) Elaneer/Coconut water
3) Paal/Milk
4) Thayir/Curds
5) Nellimulli paste (Dried gooseberries soaked in water and ground to paste)




Do the abhishekams one after the other. After curds,wash the stone with water and finally place the nellimulli paste on the top of the stone. Make some turmeric paste. Keep two eyes with the petals of red hibiscus (chembarathi poo) using the turmeric paste to stick. Then keep a big bhindi of turmeric paste and apply kumkum on top of it. Put a golden chain and keep the neem flowers and hibiscus on top of the stone.


Show dhoopam (incense sticks ) and ottalathi(hand held lamp with one wick). Put flowers for Amman, Kumbham and Kaarthaveerayan.


Keep the maavilaku ( 2 nos) on a banana leaf. Make wick out of cotton. Keep a depression on the centre of the lamp and keep the wick there. Spoon ghee on to the cotton wick. Break a coconut and keep the two halves on the top and bottom of the leaf. Light the vilakku.


Bring the nivedyam and place it before Amman. The tradition is, whatever is cooked for the day is placed before Amman and then partaken. Also once the lamp is lit, no more tempering with mustard seeds will done in the home, for the day.


Following are the nivedyam list.

  • Pal Pongal (rice and lentil cooked in jaggery and milk)
  • Vella amminikozhakkattai ( Sweet rice balls of miniature size)
  • Pacharisi idli (Raw rice idli)
  • Cooked rice
  • Molagotal
  • Puli pachadi
  • Keep 1/4 cup of rice flour and 2 tblspn of jaggery on a banana leaf.

(The recipes will follow in the next post)



Perform the nivedyam. Take the above said items back to kitchen. Wipe the area where it is kept with little water. Then show anjalathi (hand held lamp which can hold 5 separate wicks), followed by karpooram(Camphor).


In the evening, offer bananas as nivedyam. The following morning, cooked rice and curds are kept as prasadam and karpooram is shown. After that , slightly push all the three - Amman, Kumbham and Kaarthaveerayan from its place. This is to indicate that are moved after they are invoked the previous day. Its like setting them free. If we are to keep them permanently, then poojas are also to be done regularly, which is not possible.


Thursday, July 23, 2009

Baked Pasta

I would normally keep a big jar of homemade pizza sauce or you call it pasta sauce in the freezer because it's just so convenient using it for a meal, either to make lasagna, pizza or pasta. After those tired home trip, I was quite lazy to cook, luckily I found a jar of the pizza sauce from the freezer that I made it few weeks ago. I simply pan fry some carrot and mushroom with the pizza sauce then season with a tablespoon of soy sauce, some black pepper and salt. Also didn't forget the creamy texture, I added some cream and milk to thicken it then pour it into two serving plates. Other than topped it with some cheese (I don't have enough cheese on hand, too bad!), I like to give it an extra flavour and moisture texture. I mix an egg, some cream, anchovy puree and parmesan cheese then pour on top of the cheese. Bake at 180C until the cheese melted and the white sauce is bubbling. Simply the best!

filming - HGTV

It’s official. Filming is complete. I imagine somewhere out there, somebody is busy editing and cutting out the numerous “um’s” and frequent direct eye contact with the camera.



First - we don’t have an air date yet. As soon as we get some more information, we’ll let you know! (I wonder how many of you will still ask in the comments, despite my clear, informative writing.)



The process was fun and everyone involved was great! It’s tough to walk around and talk about your house with cameras in your face, but the producer assured us we were doing great.



The designer was Taniya Nayak, who we’ve recognized from other HGTV programming. She was nice and had great things to say about the house.





Here are a few of the crew working in the house:









Makeup – of course:





As far as who had their best Bang for their Buck – we don’t know yet. I guess we’ll find out when they air!