~ Top 10 Places on my 2019 Travel Wishlist!! And my top 5 picks for you…

HAPPY HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

2019 is here and I am oh so excited! A new year brings with it new opportunities and new horizons to achieve, and this year won’t be any different. While I am still working on my New Years resolutions list, I do have a travel wishlist ready! Tells you about my priorities, right, LOL!!

Every year end the hubby and I talk about our travel wish list for the next year and work towards budgeting it. We choose some domestic (within the US) places and then some do-able places and then some “I really wish” places – which for now are just drooled upon but for cost and visa purposes along with travel time and other constrains are set on the back burner for the following year. Because we know those are “difficult to achieve” I wont be sharing these in this post, but if you want to know which are those places for us, lemme know in the comments section below and I’ll write a post about it.

Today, I am sharing our top 10, but in reality not all 10 will be done in 2019. Hence the name “travel wishlist”. So without further ado, in no particular order, here goes:

Our Top 10:

Home: India and Kuwait 🙂 No points for guessing this would be on our list.

Petra, Jordan: Coz it doesn’t require a whole lotta days to witness this beauty and is perfect to squeeze in if you are planning a visit to that side of the world.

Amarillo and surrounding area: Having lived in Texas for so long, we haven’t explored as much as we’d like to, so this year, we are hoping to change that and go about and explore/enjoy what the 2nd largest state in US has to offer!

– A relaxing getaway at a resort in Texas Hill Country: This one is always on my list, coz a relaxing getaway close to home sounds blissful to me, and having seen quite a bit of Texas Hill Country, we don’t feel compelled to be out and about exploring, instead can focus on relaxing!

Port Aransas / Corpus Christi: Coz trust me, not all Texas beaches suck!! Infact even Galveston has improved so much in the past few years! I’m working on a Galveston post and promise to have it your way well before spring break 🙂

Europe!! Somewhere, anywhere! LOL!! JUST TAKE US!

PCH: This won’t be doable though – thanks to the recent natural destruction on that side. Basically quite a bit got washed off, and though they have rebuilt quite a bit of it, it’s still work in progress. Hoping to go if this gets fixed.

Mount Rushmore: How cool would it be to celebrate July 4th here?!

New Mexico: Those White Sand Dunes are calling my name!!! Or maybe the Hot Air Balloon festival… Or maybe skiing in the Taos this winter?!

Some National Parks: We want to be more outdoorsy this spring/summer, so hoping to visit some national parks around Houston.

My top 5 picks for you guys would be:

Domestic within US:

– ~ West Coast: San Fran!!

~ National Parks: Yellow Stone National Park (YSNP)!!

– Utah for those magical National Parks it has to offer: Blog post coming soon.

– Miami: Blog post coming soon.

~ West Coast: South Lake Tahoe…

Around Houston:

~ Around Houston: Fredericksburg!!

~ Around Houston: South Padre Island…

~ Around Houston: San Antonio!!

– Waco: Blog post coming soon.

~ Around Houston: New Orleans!!

Outside of continental US:

~ The Perfect Vacation: San Juan, PR!

~ Cruise to Bahamas…

– Hawaii: ~ Maui, Hawaii…

– India and Dubai!!

~ Our 6 day Western Caribbean Cruise to Mexico!

And here are the other travel posts I have done till now, in case one of these tickle your fancy!

~ Oahu, Hawaii!!

~ The Big Island of Hawaii…

~ West Coast: Seattle!!

~ Colorado (Winter Special)…

~ Viva Las Vegas!!

~ Around Houston: Austin!!

~ Chicago!!

And here are some helpful travel related links:

~ Road Trip Ready!

~ Why Travel??

~ Carry-On Essentials when flying with a baby!

~ What’s in my Carry-on!!

~ Cruising Tips & Tricks!!

So, where are y’all planning to travel this year? I’d love to hear, please let me know in the comments section below. And I hope you enjoyed reading this post as much as I enjoyed putting it together.

Until next time… Ciao!

Advertisements

~ Chicken Makhani!!

Chicken makhani is a slightly sweet creamy dish of Chicken. The makhani gravy or sauce is usually made up of pureed tomatoes, ginger and garlic paste, red chili powder and cream. It is very similar to the sauce used for Butter Chicken (both of which have an additional ingredient of butter, as their name suggests), infact sometimes the names can be used inter-changeably.

In my recipe, the flavors of this dish are more in line with home style than restaurant style recipe as I have made it healthy by skipping the cream and using milk instead as well as skipping cashew nuts. If making for a party, or otherwise, feel free to use cream and cashew nuts if you are up for the additional calories! Over the years, I have consulted various websites and compiled a recipe which works best for me, so here goes:

 Ingredients:

  • Oil 4 tablespoons (to make it healthy, I use Olive Oil)
  • 1.5 pounds chicken breast cut into medium sized cubes
  • 4 Green Cardamoms
  • 6 Cloves
  • 2 inch Cinnamon Stick
  • 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
  • 2 medium size Green Chilies – chopped
  • 4 medium sized ripe red Tomatoes – pureed
  • 4 teaspoons canned Tomato Puree
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon Red Chilli Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Garam Masala Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Turmeric (Haldi)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Coriander Powder (Dhaniya powder)
  • 2 teaspoons Dried Fenugreek leaves (Kasoori methi)
  • 3 teaspoons Honey
  • Skimmed milk 2 cups, for a creamier yet healthy version, use full cream milk
  • Fresh coriander leaves chopped for garnish

Method:

  1. Cut the chicken into medium sized cubes.
  2. Heat oil in a non-stick pan. Add green cardamoms, cloves, cinnamon, garlic and ginger, and sauté till fragrant.
  3. Add green chillies and continue to sauté.
  4. Add the tomato puree (both fresh puree and canned puree together) with little salt to the ginger-garlic masala and continue cooking till it reduces slightly.
  5. Add salt, red chili powder, garam masala powder, haldi, dhaniya powder along with kasoori methi, honey, milk and mix well.
  6. Now add the chicken pieces.
  7. Cook on high flame for 5 minutes and then simmer for about 20-25 minutes to let all the juices seep into the chicken. Cook until the chicken is fully cooked, but be careful not to overlook as that can dry out the chicken.
  8. Garnish with coriander leaves and your dish is ready to serve!

This dish is best served with Roti, Naan, Onion Kulcha or Parathas, as well as Simple Basmati Rice or Jeera (cumin) Rice. Enjoy and do let me know how you liked it 🙂 I would love to hear!!

For my vegetarian readers, here’s Paneer Makhani!!