Different Drummer

"If a man does not keep pace with his companions,perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away." ~Henry David Thoreau

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Secret Daughter by Shilpi Somaya Gowda

“It has been more than twenty years since she lost her two daughters here, the one who was never given a name or a life, and her precious Usha. With thoughts of Usha comes the physical ache in her heart. There has not been a day since Usha’s birth that Kavita has not thought of her, mourned her loss, and prayed for the hollow feelings of grief to melt away. But God has not listened. Or else he has not yet forgiven her. Because the heartache has endured.” 
― Shilpi Somaya GowdaSecret Daughter

In January, we met at Sandy's home to discuss Secret Daughter by Shilpi Somaya Gowda.  Most everyone really enjoyed reading the book and we had a great discussion on many aspects of the book: adoption, infanticide, cultural norms for different countries, motherhood, loss, survival, longing for  understanding of family and home.  

Sandy served pita chips with a Sun Dried Tomato Hummus  and Saag Shorba soup


recipe from Ryan Camomile www.ryansrecipes.com/recipes/indian/saag-shorba-indian-soup
12 oz spinach, fresh
2 medium onions, finely chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons ghee (or vegetable oil)
3 inch p8iece of ginger, chopped
2 teaspoons coriander
2 teaspoons cumin (or more if you like)
1 teaspoon turmeric
dash of cayenne
dash cardamom
5 cups chicken broth
4 cups tomatoes diced, or 32 oz bottle tomatoes
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
2 cups heavy cream (coconut milk works well)
salt to taste
cilantro for garnish

 In a large pot, heat the ghee or oil.  Add chopped onions and saute or 5-10 minutes.  Add garlic, ginger, coriander, cumin, turmeric, cayenne and cardamom.  Saute for 3 minutes more.

Add broth and bring to a boil.  Add spincah and tomatoes and bring back to a quick boil.

Turn off heat and transfer to a blender and blend until a thick consistency, just a few seconds.  The spinach has to b broken up so there isn’t long strands, but not pureed.

Add back to pot and add cream, slowly to avoid curdling.
Add salt to taste and more cayenne and cumin, if you wish.
Simmer for 10-20 minutes.
Serve with cilantro as a garnish.


1 can garbanzo beans or chick peas, drained
3 Tablespoons sun dried tomatoes in oil
2 teaspoons parsley
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 Tablespoons lemon juice

In a food processor, combine all ingredients and process until smooth and creamy.  If the hummus consistency is too thick, add 1 Tablespoon water until desired consistency.

Serve sun dried tomato hummus immediately with pita bread, veggies or pita chips.  Store in air tight container in the refrigerator.  Can be made up to two days in advance.

“But most of all, when Somer closes her eyes, she imagines the moment she will hold her baby for the first time. She keeps Asha’s photo in her pocket and looks at it often. That one photo vaporized her doubts and made everything come to life. She lay awake at night, picturing her daughter’s sweet face.” 

To read more about: Shilpi Gowda and her new book, The Golden Son go to

Promise Me, By Richard Paul Evans

"As you read my story, there is something I want you to understand. That in spite of all the pain—past, present and that still to come—I wouldn’t have done anything differently. Nor would I trade the time I had with him for anything—except for what, in the end, I traded it for." 
Beth Cardall, Promise Me, Richard Paul Evans

 We met at Paula's historic home in Payson.  Her home is on the National Historic Home register and she has beautifully restored it.  Everywhere you look, there is a new delight to behold.
 Her lovely VictorianChristmas tree.

 The lovely table inviting guests to enjoy the delightful food, the company and festive  atmosphere.
Carolyn and Paula
 Paula's new black and white kitchen
An exotic Italian dish created by Suzanne
 The book we read this month was Promise Me, by Richard Paul Evans.  
A popular local author, we have read several of his books.
 "Stockings were hung by the chimney with care . . ."
Sandy, Carol, Suzanne, Stephanie, Patti, Lillian, Carolyn, Ann

Paula, Carol, Suzanne, Stephanie, Patti, Lillian, Carolyn, Ann

Carol, Stephanie, Lillian, Ann and Patti
 We enjoy a lively Gift Exchange - many of the books are put on our new years reading list, so we can all enjoy them.
Patti and Suzanne



Carol and Patti - measuring up