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10 Delicious Diwali Dishes

Wishing every one a Happy Diwali and Happy New Year “Saal Mubarak” 

diwali

Deepawali – “Festival of Lights” An ancient Hindu festival to celebrate the triumph of light over dark and good over evil. This year Diwali will be celebrated on Wednesday November 11th, 2015, this is one of the most major holidays in India. Although, it’s not just celebrated in India it’s actually celebrated by millions all over the world.

No festival or celebration is complete without delicious food and sweets.  This Diwali and New Year’s be sure to check out these great 10 recipes that is guaranteed to please the whole family.

Diwali is celebrated in many different ways, but the most traditional ways that people celebrate is by lighting lamps and clay diyas, fireworks, music, decorations, delicious food and sweets. Rangoli patterns are decorated inside and outside created with colorful rice, sand and colorful flower petals. These colorful geometric rangoli designs are created for the entrance ways, living rooms or courtyards of houses that encourage and welcome the goddess Lakshmi Mata.

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Diwali is one of the most lavishing, fun, full of tradition, bright, colorful and exciting festivals celebrated around the world. I find Diwali to be very similar to the traditional holiday “Christmas” which is also celebrated by many around the world. Diwali is all about exchanging gifts and sweets, greeting friends, family and loved ones with Diwali wishes, indulging in lavishing festive meals, buying and wearing new clothing.

For some of us the next day after Diwali, is Gujarati New Years also known as “Bestu Varsha”, “Nutan Varsha”, “Padwa” and “Saal Mubarak”. We celebrate the year 2072 this year, Gujarati’s all over the world will celebrate this day to mark the beginning of a new year and put all their worries behind, forget the past and prepare to welcome the “New Beginning” of a new year.

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No festival or celebration is complete without delicious food and sweets.  This Diwali and New Year’s be sure to check out these great 10 recipes that is guaranteed to please the whole family.

  1. Sooji Ka Halwa

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2. Corn Flour Spinach Onion Pakora

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3. Dal Dhokli

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4. Dry Fruit Anjeer Kajoor Ladoo

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5. Methi Muttar Malai Paneer

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6. Mattar Tofu in White Gravy

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7. Moong Dal Dhokla

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8. Strawberry Rose Lassi

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9. Methi Kela Na Bhajiya

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10. Carrot Kheer – Gajar Dhoodh Pak

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Wishing you all a very Happy Diwali and Prosperous New Year. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Corn Flour Spinach Onion Pakora

Corn Flour Spinach Onion Pakora | Special Corn Flour Spinach Onion Deep Fried Fritters

 

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Dull rainy days always make me feel a bit down…can’t go out since it’s too wet and cold and staying in can get boring. That’s when these totally scrumptious, delicious and quick preparing Corn Flour Spinach Onion Pakoras (fritters) come handy. I’m not one to always deep fry, but some things just taste much better when deep fried ….like Pakora! 🙂 Enjoy these divine little fritters with your favorite sauce and a cup of tea (chai) and trust me ….the rainy day blues will disappear.

Corn Flour Spinach Onion Pakora are sinfully delicious little fritters made in a combination of corn flour, besan (gram flour), spinach, onion and flavored up with a combination of dried spices and deep fried till nice and golden brown.

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Pakoras are really famous in Northern Indian, they’re made in many different variations of vegetables, spices, veg or non-veg and batters. Normally, all pakoras are deep fried till nice and golden brown and served as a snack or appetizer. They are considered to be a quick fast food item and are very regularly found sold on side street food trolley, in restaurants and grocery stores.

I won’t say that these are  a healthier version since I’m using yellow corn flour, but yes ! one thing for sure that they taste awesome. The combination of yellow corn flour, besan, spinach, onion and spices is a total WOW!. I’ve made different pakoras before that are either completely traditional Gujarati or traditional Punjabi.

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Some of my all time favorites are Methi Palak Pakora and Methi Kela Na Bhajiya with my favorite chutneys Green Coriander Chutney and Mint Coriander Chutney.

 

Corn Flour Spinach Onion Pakora

Prep Time: 25 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Serving Size: 4-5

Corn Flour Spinach Onion Pakora

All time favorite and super simple Corn Flour Spinach Onion Pakora

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cup - corn flour (I used the yellow corn flour)
  • 3 Tbsp.-besan (chick pea flour)
  • 1 medium - onions; finely chopped
  • 2 cups - spinach; washed & finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp. - ginger-garlic Paste
  • 1 tbsp. - green chili paste
  • 1 tsp. - red Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp. –turmeric Powder (haldi)
  • Pinch of Baking Powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/2 tbsp.- kesoori methi; crushed (dried fenugreek leaves)
  • ½ tbsp. - oil
  • 3 Tbsp. -coriander leaves / cilantro; finely chopped
  • Water as needed
  • Oil to deep fry

Instructions

  • In a mixing bowl, add corn flour, besan, green chili paste, ginger-garlic paste, baking powder, kesoori methi, salt to taste, red chili powder, turmeric, oil and combine all together. Then add in chopped spinach, onion and coriander leaves; mix well by adding in very little water at a time to create a smooth flowing batter of medium consistency. (Spinach releases water)
  • Heat a frying pan with oil while the Corn Flour Spinach Onion Pakora batter gets ready.
  • When the oil is medium hot ;test by gently sliding a little dough in the oil and it should rise to the top almost immediately. Drop spoonful of the batter in medium hot oil and fry the pakoras till golden and crisp.
  • Remove and drain on paper towels.
  • Serve hot with your favorite chutney/sauce.
  • http://myfoodforthesoul.com/corn-flour-spinach-onion-pakora/

     

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    Bottle Gourd or Lauki Juice

    Bottle Gourd or Lauki Juice | Lauki Ka Juice | Dudhi nu Juice | Amazing Benefits from Lauki Juice for the Health

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    Bottle Gourd, Lauki, Long Squash, Calabash or Dudhi these are all of the amazing names of this super health vegetable. This Asian inspired vegetable “Bottle Gourd” is exactly the way it sounds a squash grown in a bottle shape, light green and long. The exterior with a thin waxy light green skin with an interior that’s solid, but spongy texture. This vegetable is so versatile, it can be used for cooking curry, making delicious desserts or consuming as a drink for super health benefits. Lauki or Dudhi is made up of 90% water therefore it’s very easy to digest and very beneficial for the health.

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    A few year back we had planted a few Lauki plants in our garden, not knowing that it was going to become a huge vine garden producing lots of large green leafs and producing lots of beautiful large bottle gourd or lauki. In the beginning we were overwhelmed and totally excited to see that all the hard work put into maintaining the lauki plant was paying off. As the summer season was passing by more and more lauki was being produced, some output was great but some a disappointment. Lots of Dudhi, but hard to keep up with all of them. 🙂

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    With extensive research and hearing from my family members all about the great benefits of lauki juice, I had to try. In the beginning I consumed raw lauki juice which I had extracted in my juicer and drank it as is. I’ll be honest the taste was not the greatest. 🙁  Oh my something was lacking and I sure wasn’t attracted to this juice. My husband kept insisting that I should drink this juice daily for health reasons and overlook the bitter taste and think of the great nutritional values….which is exactly what I did and now I completely enjoying drinking “Lauki Juice”.

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    Some ask why? Lauki Juice ….well with lots of research done it’s proven that lauki contains  90-96% of water. It’s easy to extract the juice and it’s readily available  in many supermarkets or local grocery stores. The best part is that it completely affordable !!  Lauki juice comes with many health benefits and the juice of a lauki is rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin B, sodium, iron and potassium. It has low-fat and cholesterol level. As a result, this anti-oxidant drink is quite popular among health conscious individuals.

    Top 8 Health Benefits Of Lauki Juice: Right from “Stylecraze”| Health & Wellness

    1. Promotes Weight Loss:

    Bottle gourd juice is popular among those who want to lose weight. All you need to do is peel the skin of a fresh lauki, cut it into little pieces, put it in a juicer and prepare the juice. Have this juice regularly to reduce your weight. As this juice is loaded with vitamins, potassium and iron, it is extremely nutritious. Moreover, this juice is believed to curb your appetite if you can manage to drink it in the morning on an empty stomach.

    2. Helps Digestion And Treats Constipation:

    Bottle gourd contains not only soluble fiber, but also insoluble fiber along with high water content. Lauki juice is beneficial for improving the digestive system. Drinking lauki juice is known to treat constipation effectively. It also helps in treating problems related to digestive system like acidity and flatulence.

    3. Provides Cooling Effect:

    Since lauki juice is rich in water content, it provides a cooling to the body, which help to replenish the water lost in the form of sweat. It is an absolute must-have during summers!

    4. Treats Urinary Problems:

    Since it is diuretic in nature, lauki juice flushes out the excess water content from the body. Lauki juice becomes even more effective when a spoon of lime juice is added to it before consumption.

    5. Treats Sleeping Disorders:

    If you are suffering from insomnia, try mixing sesame oil with lauki juice. It is known to help you sleep better.

    6. Replenishes Loss Of Water Content:

    If you are suffering from health issues like profuse sweating, fatigue or diarrhea, than drinking a glass of lauki juice would prove to be extremely good for you. Lauki juice naturally helps to replace the water content lost and at the same time, controls extreme thirst, which is common among diabetic patients. It revitalizes you by replenishing the loss of water.

    7. Keeps The Heart Healthy:

    Drinking bottle gourd juice helps you to keep the heart healthy by regulating the blood pressure.

    8. Reduces Inflammation Of Liver:

    Ayurveda recommends drinking lauki juice for reducing inflammation of the liver.

    Lauki Juice Recipe:

    How to make bottle gourd juice? Drinking the juice of bottle gourd or lauki has amazing benefits. But if do not like the flavor and taste of raw bottle gourd, here is a lauki juice recipe that you may like to try:

    • Take a small lauki, about 250 or 300 grams in weight.
    • Wash the lauki thoroughly to do away with any surface impurity.
    • Peel the lauki and cut it into small pieces. If possible, taste a small piece to find out if the bottle gourd tastes bitter.
    • Add five or six mint leaves.
    • Add a bit of water and put it in the blender.
    • Once it is done, add a spoon of cumin powder, two spoons of black pepper powder and salt to taste. Stir well and add a few ice cubes.
    • If you don’t enjoy the fiber taste, then strain the juice through a thick sieve first then add in the flavors.

    Just follow this recipe and you too will become a fan of lauki juice!

    The above is all from a research based on “stylecraze” article.

    I’m bring this juice to you based on my own personal experience, I consumed it just because of the over production of lauki in my garden and since then have been hooked. I regularly consume this lauki juice during the summer months, since this drink is consisted a cool effect to the body. We get more cool weather then hot summer days in Canada, so the consumption of lauki juice is only for a few months.

    Lauki juice can also be extracted using a juice extractor, no need to peel, just wash, cut into long thick slices and press through the extractor and drink the juice as is. This is to be considered the best way to drink, but if you find it hard to drink raw, unflavored lauki juice then follow the above lauki juice method for more enjoyable drinking experience.

     

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    This is just based on some personal experience and facts based on internet research and text book reading. Please follow based on your experience and health factors.

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    Spinach Green Onion Paratha

    Palak Hari Pyaz ke Paratha stuffed with Paneer Onion Bhurji | Spinach Green Onion Paratha-Indian Flat Bread stuff with Cottage Cheese Onion stuffing

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    Spinach and Green Onion Paratha stuffed with Paneer Onion mixture. The perfect stuffed Indian Flat Bread made with fresh Spinach, Green Onions and stuffed with sautéed Onions and Paneer (cottage cheese) lightly flavored. These parathas are so delicious and healthy …packed with Iron,Vitamin K and Calcium.  The perfect meal to enjoy anytime, any day with your favorite pickle, yogurt or a side dish of your favorite subzi.

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    As I say, summer time is the best. Nothing beats freshly grown vegetables and nothing taste better than garden fresh vegetables. This year we’ve planted red onions and white onions, but onions do take a longer time to grow. As we all may know that the greens from the onions are edible and super delicious when added into any dish. We have a neighbor that loves to garden and he also grows many different vegetables, but his biggest harvest is onions. This year he had also planted spinach (palak) and as a nice neighbor he always shares with us and that’s how I ended up with triple the amount of spinach.

    This is when I got inspired to make a dish combined with spinach and green onion also known as scallions. These greens are packed with many different health benefits as per research and that’s why I love to incorporate them into my dishes.These parathas were a creation of my own, cause I wanted to make this dish a bit more interesting and filling. I decided to make a simple but delicious paneer bhurji to fill inside the parathas to boost up the flavor. I love paneer, but I also know a lot of people don’t like it ….why I don’t understand? 🙂 No worries paneer can be substituted with tofu or if your completely not into vegetarian food then stuff it with your favorite meat.

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    This time around flavors or spiciness was not a problem, I wasn’t cooking for little ones ….this was made purely for me and my dear husband. Yes! we have become empty nesters for about a week now, our little ones are enjoying sleepover with their cousins for the last two weeks of summer vacations. 🙁  very lonely and missing them, but no worries soon their smiling faces will be back and life hearing “mummy” one million times a day will resume. Can’t wait! 🙂 🙂

    Paneer Bhurji is a very popular dish made in North India, and is enjoyed with roti. I’ve made a sandwich out of paneer bhurji called “Paneer Bhurji Sandwich”, there is actually no set ingredients for this dish, it’s lightly flavored with your choice of vegetables and mixed up with paneer (cottage cheese) or can be substituted with tofu. My Spinach Green Onion Parathas are slightly different because I flavored the parathas in a Gujarati style and prepared the stuffing in a more North Indian style but slightly on the lighter side to combine the two flavors.

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    Spinach Green Onion Paratha stuffed with Paneer Bhurji is a great breakfast, lunch or dinner idea. I made these for dinner and serve them with a dry Aloo Palak subzi- Dry Potato Spinach curry  and sweet mango pickle called Gori keri and a tall glass of Salty Lassi. The choice is yours ….no set rules enjoy it any way you like it.

    So, lets start preparing these awesome and delicious “Spinach Green Onion Paratha stuffed with Paneer Bhurji”  🙂

     

    Spinach Green Onion Paratha stuff with Paneer Onion Bhurji

    Prep Time: 30 minutes

    Cook Time: 30 minutes

    Total Time: 1 hour

    Yield: 7-8

    Spinach Green Onion Paratha stuff with Paneer Onion Bhurji

    Scrumptious, delicious and healthy garden fresh "Spinach Green Onion stuffed Paneer Bhuji Paratha

    Ingredients

      Dough
    • 1 1/2 cup - Whole Wheat Atta
    • 2 cups- Fresh Spinach; washed and finely chopped
    • 1 cup- Fresh Green Onions; washed and finely chopped
    • 1 1/2 tsp. - Ajwain (Carom Seeds)
    • 1 tbsp. - Garlic Powder
    • 1 tbsp. – Sugar
    • 1 tsp. – Red Chili Powder
    • 1 tsp. – Turmeric Powder (haldi)
    • 2 tbsp. – Oil
    • Salt to taste
    • Water as needed
      Paneer Bhurji Stuffing
    • 1 medium Red Onion - finely chopped
    • 1 cup - Springs of Green Onion - finely chopped
    • 2 cloves garlic – grated
    • 2 Green Chilies – finely chopped
    • 1 tsp. - Ginger - grated
    • 1 1/2 cups - Crumbled Paneer (chhena)
    • 1 tbsp. - Oil
    • 1/2 tsp. - Cumin Seeds (jeera)
    • 1 tsp. Red Chili powder
    • ½. – Red Chili Flakes
    • 1 tbsp. – Paratha Masala
    • Pinch of asafetida - Hing
    • Salt to taste
    • Oil 3 tbsp. + to roast the parathas

    Instructions

    Dough Preparation
  • Take a mixing bowl, add flour and all ingredients for dough preparation except water; mix well. Using warm water make it into soft and smooth dough & cover it and keep it aside for about 10-15 minutes.
  • Stuffing Preparation
  • Heat oil in a kadai on medium heat, when oil is warm add in cumin seeds, wait for them to splutter, then add in asafetida (hing), finely chopped onions, garlic, green chili, and ginger sauté well until onion are slightly pinkish.
  • Add in all dry ingredients and give it a good mix. Sprinkle a few drops of water on the mixture to avoid spices from burning and let it cook for about minute.
  • Now add in green onion and paneer. Mix it all well and turn off heat. Empty mixture into another bowl and keep aside to cool down completely.
  • Paratha Preparation
  • Knead the resting dough, and then make 7-8 equal lemon size balls. Once the stuffing has completely cool down, do the same make 7-8 lemon size balls and keep aside.
  • On to a well-floured surface, take one dough ball and roll out to about 3" disc, keep one paneer ball on the center and seal them by bring all of the edges together and roll it all into a ball. On a floured surface start rolling to make a round 8" paratha.
  • Heat tawa/frying pan, fry the paratha on both sides until turns light golden brown, Spread oil all around and on top of the paratha while cooking.
  • Remove from tawa, Spinach Green Onion stuffed with Paneer Bhurji is ready to serve hot with some butter(makhan) on top and a choice of plain yogurt, chutney or pickle or subzi.
  • http://myfoodforthesoul.com/spinach-green-onion-paratha/

     

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    Hope you enjoyed this recipe, please be sure to leave me your valuable comments, feedback or thoughts. Also subscribe to get emails of all my latest recipes. Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Google+ and it’s only fair to share. 🙂

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    Cabbage Cucumber Grape Salad

    Cabbage Cucumber Grape Salad | Crispy Colorful Cabbage, Cucumber and Red Grape Tempered (Tadka) Salad

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    Ever think of a nice flavored tadka (tempered) salad. This Colorful Cabbage with Cucumber and Seedless Red Grapes nicely seasoned with a light olive oil mustard seed tadka (tempered). This is one of the most delicious, light, flavorful, crispy tempered salads that can be enjoyed as is or a side dish with any meal. It’s bursting with some nice spiciness from the green chilies, tanginess from the lime juice and a slight hint of mustard from the tempering.

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    This is my version of a nice Indian Summer Salad. There’s nothing better than a nice fresh crispy salad. Personally, I like to prepare my salads right before it time for lunch or dinner. This way it’s nice and fresh and all the flavors are taste-able. Cabbage Cucumber Grape Salad is super fast and healthy salad that can be prepared in a snap. Vegetables like cabbage, carrot, cucumber mixed with fruits like red seedless grapes and Pomegranate seeds is totally divine. The different flavors of vegetables and fruits combined and lightly seasoned is truly refreshing.

    I learn this recipe from my sister-n-law (my brother’s wife), we were at her house for dinner one night and right before dinner I saw her prepare this awesome looking salad. It looked super delicious, but as I watched her she started to prepare a tarka (tempering) and I thought is she preparing subzi or salad.? To my surprise this lightly tempered salad was out of this world. The nice spiciness mixed with some tanginess with hint of mustard flavors was unbelievable. We all enjoyed it so much that we actually started to eat it with roti ….just like a side order of subzi. 🙂

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    Cabbage Cucumber Grape Salad is not a warm salad like the traditional Gujarati Cabbage Sambharo. This salad requires no dehydration of  the cabbage and it does not require any preparations. The light tadka (tempering) adds a nice flavor from the Olive Oil and mustard seeds. Salads are one of my all time favorites during the summer times, some of the fresh vegetables that I use in my salads are right from my very own garden.

    Every year I like to change-up the type of vegetables I grow, this year we planted low-acidic Jet Red Tomatoes,  English Slicing Cucumber, Indian White Radish (Mooli), Red Onions, White Onions, Surti Papri (beans), Green Bell Peppers and an assortment of different Green Chilies.

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    This salad is a bit different from the way my sister-n-law made it. I actually had bought a package of mixed Dole’s Brand Colorful Coleslaw Mix  which is a mix of Green Cabbage, Carrots and Red Cabbage. This is perfect when looking to make small portions of salad in different flavors and versions. I also bought some fresh seedless red grapes to bring out the sweetness in the salad.

    So with no further due, let me tell you how to make this awesome and completely healthy salad …… Cabbage Cucumber Grape Salad!

     

    Cabbage Cucumber Grape Salad

    Prep Time: 10 minutes

    Total Time: 10 minutes

    Serving Size: 3-4

    Cabbage Cucumber Grape Salad

    Indian Summer Salad- Nice and crispy, healthy tempered Cabbage Cucumber Red Grape Salad.

    Ingredients

    • 1/2 package of Dole's Colorful Coleslaw Mix
    • 1 medium - Cucumber - diced into small pieces
    • 15-20 - Red Seedless Grapes; washed and cut into half
    • 1/2 cup- Fresh Red Pomegranate Seeds
    • 1 tbsp.- Olive Oil
    • 1/2 tsp.- Black Mustard Seeds (Rai)
    • 1/2 tsp.- Green Chili Paste
    • 1/2 - Lime
    • Salt to taste

    Instructions

  • Into a large bowl combine colorful cabbage, green chili paste, red grapes, pomegranate seeds, salt to taste and squeeze juice of lime all over and mix.
  • Heat up Olive Oil, once nice and warm add in mustard seeds and let them splutter. Then pour tempering all cabbage mixture and give it a nice mix to combine everything together.
  • Serve immediately!
  • http://myfoodforthesoul.com/cabbage-cucumber-grape-salad/

     

    Hope you enjoyed this recipe, please be sure to leave me your valuable comments, feedback or thoughts. Also subscribe to get emails of all my latest recipes. Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Google+ and it’s only fair to share. 🙂

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