Forming Food Friendships at Workplace

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Matar Paneer

Food can be great ice breakers!

I just completed three months of employment at my current workplace and when I look back at my last 10 years of being employed by different companies, I realize that food has been an integral part of how I connect with my colleagues.

Most of my wonderful friendships at work can be attributed to food. When it comes to forming new food friendships, my new workplace is no different.  I have bonded over my new friends at work over food. So much, that one of my senior colleagues keeps wondering aloud how my group of work buddies can talk about food all day! 😀

I firmly believe that colleagues who eat together, work better together. Harvard Business Review’s December 2015 issue focused on the aspect of team building in the cafeteria. It basically talks about how corporations plan expensive outings to encourage teamwork. But a better way to do that now, according to research by Cornell University is deceptively simple: Encourage teams to eat together.

For me, knowing that there is an interesting dish waiting in my tiffin (or of one of my colleagues’), brings an unexplainable excitement to work till lunch. That doesn’t mean I don’t feel like working post-lunch. Because then there is a delicious snack waiting for later! And I have managed to convert some of my colleagues into “Good Morning! What have you brought for lunch?” kind of conversationalists.

While we don’t need the weather to behave in a particular way so that we can talk about food, the rain somehow makes it an even better time to talk about food. This particular post is about my favourite combination during winter and monsoon: paneer (cottage cheese) and matar (peas).

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What’s in your lunch box?

Matar Paneer


250 gm cubed paneer, fried till firm and light brown
1 cup green peas, boiled till a little mushy but retaining its bright colour
Paste of 2 onions
2 tomatoes boiled and pureed
1 tsp each of chopped ginger, garlic and green chillies
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 bay leaf
1 tsp powdered red chilli
1 tsp turmeric
2 tsp coriander seeds powder
1 tsp garam masala
2 tsp ghee (clarified butter), oil or butter
Salt to taste
A pinch of asafoetida (optional)
One cup of water


Heat ghee and add cumin seeds and bay leaf. Add the onion paste and saute till the raw smell fades. Add ginger, garlic and green chillies and saute. Add tomato puree and all the powdered masalas, except garam masala. Stir fry till the fat separates.

Add peas and paneer along with water and salt. Bring to a boil and simmer till the gravy thickens. Add garam masala and switch off the stove a minute later. Serve hot with roti or rice.






World’s largest potluck party!

Foodaholics In Ahmedabad is attempting to break the Guinness World Records for the Largest Potluck Party on Sunday, December 20, 2015.


So, if you are in Ahmedabad and are a foodie, you just cannot miss this awesome event.

‘Foodaholics in Ahmedabad’ (FiA) is a Facebook community, founded by Rohan bhatt & Esha Shah. The group hosts 33,000 active members who indulge in discussions, suggestions, exhibitions and debates pertaining to food both, virtually and during various food events conducted by the group. The group helps glorify food as a culture, recipe and knowledge amidst like-minded people. Lot of the members recommend and refer numerous food joints as well as share experiences.

Registration for the event is really simple and can be found on the FiA page on Facebook. The best part about this ‘participant-only’ event is that each registered participant has to take six portions only, of food which is made or store-bought. The food can be anything—from dry snacks to mocktails and from chai-tea to complicated dishes—all your choice!

I will be making these coconut laddoos! YLHF3889

Hope to see you at this record-breaking event this Sunday morning 🙂