Tangy and Tasty

What sets Indian cuisine apart from a lot of others is the spices. In fact, it is for these spices, the traders from all over the world came to India. Spices is what makes the Indian cuisine special. All the same you just don’t douse the food with spices. Which spice to add and how much is the essence of Indian cooking.

For the poor souls like me who don’t know all the spice proportions or don’t have time to prepare fresh spices every time, there is still hope. Unlike Vasco da Gama or those European traders we don’t have to cross the seven seas. Just go around the corner to the nearby store. In my case I simply had to reply to a review request for spice mixes by Eastern Condiments. And the spices landed at my door step.

Spices

Spices

Puliyogare/ಪುಳಿಯೋಗರೆ/tamarind rice is a traditional South-Indian recipe. The mixture can be prepared and stored for a long time and mixed with rice while eating. And if you don’t know how to prepare the mixture. Here is a super-quick way to make it.

  • Heat about 2 & 1/2 tablespoons of cooking oil.
  • Add 4 tablespoons of Eastern Puliogare.
  • Stir for about 2 mins.
  • Add about 600 gms of rice and mix thoroughly.
Puliogare/Tamarind Rice

Puliogare/Tamarind Rice

You may or may not relish brinjal but Vangi Bhath/Brinjal Rice is surely a dish you will relish. Again the method is simple.

  • Fry Brinjal and other vegetables of your choice with a pinch of turmeric in cooking oil and keep aside.
  • For the tempering, to heated cooking oil add mustard seeds, gram dal, green chilli, hing and cashew nuts.
  • To this add and stir fry about 3 & 1/2 teaspoons of Eastern Vangi Bhath powder, tamarind extract, shredded coconut(optional) , salt and jaggery.
  • Add the veggies and brinjal.
  • Add uncooked rice and mix them well.
  • Now add required amount of water for rice and let the rice cook.
Vangi Bhath/ Brinjal Rice

Vangi Bhath/ Brinjal Rice

While neither of these need any side-dishes, you can eat it with some nice hot papad or pickle. My mom prefers it with thin Majjige Saaru and I like it with thin coconut chutney.

Hope you try them out and love the dishes too :) Thanks to Eastern Condiments for the spices. Made my long weekend at home a tasty one!

Take It Easy

Sapna:

Phrases from everyday life – “Like a girl” and “Man up”. Do we know what they mean and what effect they have when we say it?

Originally posted on CEREBRATION:

Came across this video – ‘Always #LikeAGirl.’ Liked it. Thought of sharing it here. It’s been viewed over thirteen million times and has gone viral. The makers of the video say,”Boys and girls are told different things growing up, but the overriding message is clear: ideological masculinity is to be aimed for, and ideological femininity (AKA acting ‘like a girl’) is to be avoided at all costs.” This is exactly why a video like this is important. It shouts out loud that the words ,”Like a Girl” are not an insult because being a girl is not an insult in the first place. High time people get that.

Interesting thing is that just when i was wondering if i could somehow access another video , made with the same sentiment but with respect to boys, i found another one entitled – ‘The Mask You Live In.’ This video makes us…

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Tuppahirekai/Ghosale/Gilki/Sponge Gourd bhajji

Dhamargava/Tuppahirekai/ತುಪ್ಪಹೀರೇಕಾಯಿ/Sponge Gourd or what is referred to as tirprikai in colloquial Kannada is a vegetable that belongs to ridge gourd family. Looks like a ridge gourd but it is without ridges. Since it is slightly unheard of for most people I spoke to, I am giving the names in different languages from web. Plus the pic is there to see and recognize :)

Marathi – Ghosale
Kannada – Tuppahirekai
Hindi – Ghiatorui/Gilki

Tuppahirekayi

Tuppahirekayi

The subzi can be made very similar to a Turai subzi but the interesting twist here is this is used to make a bhajji/pakoda. Monsoons are just beginning and what better way to enjoy a rainy evening. So here goes the recipe

Ingredients:

  • Besan/chickpea flour – 1/2 cup
  • Sponge-gourd – 1 medium(peeled and cut into round slices)
  • Hing – a pinch
  • Soda – If you wish to. I don’t add any
  • Ajwain – as per taste
  • Jeera/cumin – as per taste
  • Salt – as per taste
  • Red Chilli powder – as per taste
  • White sesame seeds – as per taste
  • Turmeric – a pinch
  • Coriander – finely chopped – again as per taste
  • Oil for frying and a tsp in the mix/batter
  • Water for preparing the mix

Method:

  • Peel, wash, dry and cut the sponge-gourd into round slices. Keep aside.
  • Add all the other above dry ingredients and mix.
  • Add a tsp of oil to the mixture.
  • Now gradually add water to the mixture to prepare the batter. Caution: Do not make the batter thin. Since sponge-gourd is high in water content if not coated properly oil splutters.
  • Heat oil for frying.
  • Now take a slice of the veggie, coat it with batter and deep fry to get nice bhajiyas :)
Tiprikai bhajji

Tiprikai bhajji

  • Eat it with any chutney/sauce you like.

I didn’t know how this is going to turn out but the moment I tasted the pakoras I knew I was on the money :)

Banana Dosa/Balehannu dose

Banana is a staple in this part of the world. A fruit available for all the 12 months of the year. And even most of our festival rituals include giving away fruits and mostly banana and betel leaves. On numerous such occasions where everyone is buying and giving away bananas one tend to go bananas wondering what to do with them. Here is nice way of including them in your food. This one will be relished by even those who normally don’t like banana.

The fruit has numerous health benefits ranging from providing vital micro-nutrients, aiding digestion, providing energy, improving mood, strengthen your bones, blood, hair,skin etc. Most people avoid it as it is fattening/high in sugar, a fact they conveniently forget while eating sweets and junk food.

Anyway here is the quick & simple recipe for Banana dosa/ಬಾಳೆಹಣ್ಣು ದೋಸೆ without any more ‘gyan’.

Ingredients:

  • Banana – 4 medium ones(ripe)
  • Rice – 1 cup
  • Water – for batter
  • Oil/Ghee – for frying
  • Salt – as per taste

Method:

  • Soak rice for about an hour
  • After it is soaked, grind the rice to make a coarse paste
  • Now add the bananas and grind again to make a fine paste
  • Once you are done, the batter for banana dosa is ready
  • Pour some oil/ghee on a hot flat tawa and spread the batter for delicious dosa.
Spread dosa batter

Spread dosa batter

You can have this with any traditional dosa accompaniments or with some yumm sabzi, chutney and curd like we did.

Banana Dosa/Balehannu dose

Banana Dosa/Balehannu dose

How I Was Saved From the Titanic (1912)

Featured Image -- 1968

Sapna:

Very interesting account! Also, very disturbing. A very moving tale of a Titanic survivor!

Originally posted on The Yesteryear Gazette:

(From the San Francisco Call – June 2, 1912)

A Survivor of the Most Dramatic Marine Disaster in the World’s History – Told Exclusively to Readers of the Semi-Monthly Magazine Section

By Charlotte Collyer

R.M.S.  Embarking on Fatal Maiden VoyageOf the many shocking things that I remember in connection with the lost Titanic, there is one impression that will never leave me. It is the irony of the faith that I had in the big ship. “She is unsinkable,” I had been told; “she is the safest boat afloat.” I had never been on an ocean voyage, and I was afraid of the sea. But I listened to the people who said: “Take the new Titanic. She cannot come to any harm. New inventions have made her safe; and then, the officers will be extra careful on her first trip.” That sounded as if it must be true; and so Harvey, my husband, and our…

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Rat hole

There was time when I was looking for a PG(paying guest) accommodation to stay in Bangalore. In the most places the broker showed, I could hardly bring myself to look at the place, let alone stay there. They looked like rat holes. And obviously I did not take up the place. A rat hole isn’t my idea of home!

rathole

I was talking to a friend of mine this afternoon when she mentioned about a previous roommate of hers who owned a pet RAT! The only other person I have heard of, who owns a rat, is Ron Weasley from the Harry Potter series. I didn’t like the pet in the book and no way I can find it cute it real life. But when I started thinking about it, it is personal choice right. Who am I to judge?

Having said that, I have some personal choices too and sharing a living space with a rat isn’t one of them. Would be able to stay with a person who owns a pet rat and give a rat’s ass about it?

Chain of events

Chain snatching is a common phenomenon in India. Indians are obsessed  with gold and what better way to make some quick money than snatch the gold chains from unsuspecting ladies walking down the street.

csNot only do these thieves snatch the chains but also harm the women. To avoid getting into such situations most women these days resort to artificial jewellery.

Recently when Me and my roomie were trading our chain snatching stories, we came across one where the guy snatched a chain went off on his bike. Very quickly he found out the chain was not real gold so he came back, threw the chain on the girl’s face and slapped her hard :O Talk about misplaced sense of entitlement.

Talking about  misplaced sense of entitlement, the one that takes the cake is MCPs who believe to rape is a man’s right . Check out the recent statement by Mulayam Singh Yadav on Shakti Mills rape case.

God save our country from such #idioticLeaders. Hopefully God is listening. In the meanwhile we can do our bit by voting responsibly in this elections.

Such leaders have snatched more than just gold chains during the last 60 years. Now time has come to act. Please Vote and vote responsibly!