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Prerana Sastri

Editorial Assistant at Kitchen Stories

instagram.com/perryonthecake/

This article is part of our monthly issue "A Culinary Christmas Carol," in which we explore traditional and modern takes on holiday dishes from around the world. Using the framework of Christmas Past, Present, and Yet to Come, we'll share fun recipes, last minute gift ideas, tips for cooking a small feast in case you're social distancing, and plenty of light-hearted holiday content for you to unwind with. Check out this link to find an overview of all our weekly topics, stories, recipes, and more.

We’ve all been there—in a cooking ‘rut’ of sorts—stuck in an endless rotation of just a handful of dishes. Then the boredom arrives, and we turn to the Internet, looking for much-needed recipe inspiration. My highlight of the year, for instance, was making this Bebinca recipe. Mind you, I’m no baker and had ever attempted this somewhat complex recipe before, but the results were pleasantly surprising!

There is a certain sense of accomplishment that comes with getting a recipe right. As we leave this odd, confusing year behind, here’s a fun challenge to break the monotony and to put your cooking skills to test, based on your zodiac sign. To keep things interesting, the recipes are picked out based on what your sign does not usually like, well, you know, it is a “challenge” after all.

Aries (March 21 - April 20)

As the first sign of the Zodiac, Aries are energetic and go-getters. They absolutely love protein-forward dishes and prefer recipes that are fuss-free and quick. Another interesting thing about Aries is that they love spice. So don't be surprised if you find their pantry always stocked with different types of chilli and hot sauces. Our challenge for team protein and potatoes aka Aries takes some time and patience in the kitchen, but is totally meatless!

White mushroom lasagna

White mushroom lasagna

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Taurus (April 20 - May 20)

Tauruses are notoriously famous for being ‘picky’ about what they eat. So from organic produce, to good quality cheese or wine, they love indulging into the finer details. In the kitchen, they follow recipes to the T, cannot say no to sweets, and will happily pick baking over any other cooking technique. So why not switch it up with a no-bake, savory sandwich instead?

Grilled chicken banh mi with pickled carrots and daikon radish

Grilled chicken banh mi with pickled carrots and daikon radish

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Gemini (May 21 - June 20)

Geminis love to cook big, hearty meals for their loved ones. In the kitchen a Gemini cooks intuitively and loves to experiment with different cuisines. Whether it’s different textures, or bold flavors, nothing excites a Gemini more than food which challenges the norms of cooking. As a challenge for the new year, here’s a traditional recipe for our experimental cook, that may look deceptively simple but is hard to perfect.

Çilbir (Turkish poached eggs with yogurt)

Çilbir (Turkish poached eggs with yogurt)

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Cancer (June 21 - July 22)

Nothing appeals more to Cancerians than grandma’s cooking or rather simple, home-cooked meals. They’re known for having a sweet tooth and cannot put down a cookie, or...ten. They absolutely love salads, healthy and simple meals. So, for this culinary challenge, we thought why not something more fancy? Of course, keeping in mind that Cancerians don't like spending all day prepping, we pulled out a simple yet flavor-packed recipe!

Honey pulled salmon with oranges and fennel

Honey pulled salmon with oranges and fennel

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Leo (July 23 - August 22)

Fancy, fancy, and fancy. That’s how the king of the jungle likes to eat. Leos are known to enjoy the finer things in life and this holds true for their food habits too. From unique cocktails and caviar to expensive wine, nothing is off the table for Leos. They might not cook everyday, but when they do, it is going to be a feast! For the challenge, we thought why not switch up a Leo’s palate with something more rustic and grounded, like a classic soup.

Mushroom-barley soup

Mushroom-barley soup

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Virgo (August 23 - September 22)

Virgos in the kitchen are pragmatic and practical cooks and they absolutely love reinventing any leftovers. A Virgo prefers eating healthy and often prefers vegetarian or vegan dishes that are easy to put together and very flavorful. So, our challenge for Virgos, would be to take a backseat in the kitchen and enjoy a meal that is cooked low and slow, but does not have extensive prep time (something that Virgos dislike!). Here’s a dish that brings the best of both.

Skillet pizza with onions and fennel

Skillet pizza with onions and fennel

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Libra (September 23 - October 22)

There’s nothing more boring for Libra than to cook for one. True to their social nature, Libras often dislike eating alone and prefer small plates and shared meals. In the kitchen, they can either go big or go home, there’s no in-between. So as a culinary challenge, we’re keeping it fuss-free for our Libras, and knowing their love for sharing food, these chicken lettuce wraps can be scaled up or down easily!

Make grilled chicken lettuce wraps with Devan

Make grilled chicken lettuce wraps with Devan

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Scorpio (October 23 - November 22)

Scorpios famously love mystery, so if a dish looks like something and tastes like another, is perfect for this sign. They’re a fan of punchy, bold flavours and do not shy away from spices or new ingredients. In the kitchen, Scorpios love to experiment with cuisines and bring obscure dishes with not-so-common ingredients. So for a sign that loves to experiment, our challenge is a simple and classic dish with not too many ingredients but complex enough to keep the Scorpios interested.

Homemade butternut squash ravioli

Homemade butternut squash ravioli

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Sagittarius (November 23 - December 22)

Sagittarians have a love for travel like no other. They’re excited about trying new cuisines and often opt for more hyper-local dishes when out exploring. They’re also super organized and love calling the shots in a kitchen. So as a challenge, for our travel-loving sign, we’ve picked a simple Japanese recipe that feels like a warm hug on a winter’s day.

Oyakodon (Japanese chicken and egg rice bowl)

Oyakodon (Japanese chicken and egg rice bowl)

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Capricorn (December 22 - January 19)

Capricorn, like Aries, is a glorious member of team ‘protein and potatoes’. Traditional and tasty? These are the words to describe how a Capricorn cooks in the kitchen. Rarely do they prefer venturing out of their comfort zone, and might stick to 2–3 cuisines while cooking. In no way does this mean that a Capricorn’s palate is boring, they take pride in the recipes that have been passed down generations and often even like teaching others these recipes. So our challenge for Capricorns is a ‘Veganuary’, with a recipe that is meatless, classic but still delicious!

Vegan moussaka

Vegan moussaka

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Aquarius ( January 19 - February 19)

Aquarians love adding their personal touch to any recipe they try. Nothing makes them happier than cooking with friends and learning new techniques in the kitchen. So if your Aquarius friend calls you over for a barbecue, do not pass up this opportunity! For our experimental cooks, we had to look for a recipe without a lot of room to play. It’s definitely good to follow a recipe from time to time, so here’s our challenge for Aquarius to start the New Year.

Skillet pull-apart wild garlic bread

Skillet pull-apart wild garlic bread

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Pisces (February 20 - March 19)

Last but definitely not the least, Pisces loves to cook with intuition. Recipes? Not for this sign. They often throw things together from whatever the pantry or fridge has to offer. Of course, this means that the food can sometimes be a hit or miss, but still enjoyable in the company of a Pisces. Warm, loving, and spontaneous, the cooking style of a Pisces matches their personality perfectly. So, as a challenge we picked out a recipe that is just a ‘little’ strict, but the results are simply so, so good. I mean, bacon, potatoes and cheese...what’s not to love?

Tartiflette (French potato, bacon, and cheese casserole)

Tartiflette (French potato, bacon, and cheese casserole)

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Is your zodiac reading true to life or a total miss? Let us know in the comments or share the challenges you'll be taking up in the kitchen in the New Year!

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