Wishes

Today is S’s Birthday and I am terribly busy. I baked a Banana and Walnut cake for him yesterday 😀 Yipppeeeeee. This will be just my second time…and it has turned out really good! The first time round..I baked a chocolate cake at a friend’s place…which was equally yummyy, but then she was guiding me each step of the way. I am thankful to Pras who not only helped me bake the cake but also for keeping the surprise a secret from S. He did not have a clue what was happening last night. ROFL! Somehow, I had this feeling that he knew what I was upto…but he didn’t!!!! I am sure he didn’t think I would bake a cake…I am the one who will order 😀 But the satisfaction I got after the end result was fantastic. It’s different…buying a cake and baking one. All your love, effort and hardwork goes into the one you bake…so it tastes even more delicious 🙂 I also made Vada with Coconut and Dried Red Chilli Chutney (the credit of which goes to Pras again) for breakfast, Chapala Pulusu (Smoked Salmon Fillet Curry-the credit of which goes to my mom) with Plain Rice for lunch, and probably S’s fav Peri Peri Chicken Indian Style for Dinner. Recipes will be coming up soon 🙂

Yup…the cake I baked 😀 and don’t worry…S is not 10 😀 There was no space to insert any more candles and looking at the cake…you can also say that I am not very good at decorating it either 😀

Peri Peri Chicken Indian Style at Home. Yummy!

OK…before I start off on this post…let me just say that we went to watch IRON MAN yesterday starring Robert Downey Jr, Gwyneth Paltrow and Jeff Bridges and it was FANTASTICO! Review coming up very soon. SO stay tuned!

Ironmanposter.JPG

OK…coming back to the actual post….did you ever taste a Portugese Dish called Peri-Peri Chicken? Trust me…it’s truly delicious….it’s heavenly!! Our local restaurant Nandos is famous for this and S & I simply love going there. The secret to this dish is the sauce…Nandos Hot Peri-Peri Sauce which is what the chefs at Nandos use to marinate the chicken in before they grill it. S and I always wanted a couple of bottles of the sauce at home and were more than glad when we saw our local supermarket selling them. You can have it with anything…bread, chips, tortillas and even rice 🙂

So one day when we decided to grill chicken at home…S wanted to try out a new recipe. Instead of the regular marination of chicken with youghurt, chili powder etc etc…he wanted to do it with the Nandos sauce 😀 Yes! Our very own Peri Peri Chicken Indian style (that is what I’d like to call it from today) at home…..and all it takes is 10 minutes for preparation with minimal ingredients.

Ingridients:

  1. Nandos Hot Peri-Peri Sauce (there’s also Extra Hot Peri-Peri Sauce if you like your chicken really hot!)
  2. Salt to taste
  3. Tandoori Chicken Powder – 2 Tbsp
  4. Ginger Garlic Paste – 1 Tsp
  5. Chicken Legs or Thighs – 5 (Depends how much an ‘eater’ you are and if you are having any guests over 🙂
  6. Lemon Juice – 2 Tbsp
  7. Lime – 4 (Cut to sprinkle on chicken at the end)

Method:

  • Pre-heat oven at 200 °C for 10-15 mins
  • In the meantime, wash chicken thoroughly in cold water and pierce into it with a knife to make spaces so as to let the ingridients into the pieces
  • Add 8-10 Tbsp Nandos Hot Peri-Peri Sauce, 3 Tbsp Tandoori Chicken Powder, 1 Tsp Ginger Garlic Paste, 2 Tbsp Lemon Juice, Salt to taste and mix well.
  • Marinate for 15 mins

The best thing about this recipe is that you don’t have to marinate the chicken over night or for hours together…15 mins is just fine.

  • and that’s it…place the chicken pieces on an oven grill and place it into the pre-heated owen at 200 °C for 45 mins – 1 hr
  • Garnish with coriander and onions. Cut lime into pieces and leave them on the plate

Picture Courtesy of – http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u80/AtlFoodie/BoneHeads/Chicken2.jpg

Sorry, no pics of the dish we made…we were done with it before I could take any 😀

Since it is a very simple dish…everyone can try it out! Guys, Girls, Men, Women, Grannies and Grandpas, the lazy ones who don’t want to cook, learners….everyone really….and let me know how it goes 🙂

Njoy!

PS: Just realised that you actually get the Nando’s Sauce in the restaurant itself 😀 And also…once you are done with the dish, you can dip you chicken in the sauce before you savour it…even more YUMMY!! 😀

Movie Review: Tashan

Ok..before i start…let me just clarify that my image header actually reads ‘Deccan Chargers’.

Coming to the movie, I did not have a good feeling about it from the beginning…since I saw it’s rushes. I wasn’t sure if I’d like it. But what the hell, I had the unlimited movies card and I could watch as many number of movies I wanted……never mind how crap they were.

The movie starts off with obviously the titles which had quite a resemblance to Kill Bill or Sin City…like the titles rolling and in the background you are shown actual scenes from the movie…as in a heads up of what we could expect.

The movie starts off with the story of Saif Ali Khan aka Jimmy….how he works in a call centre…how he loves sleeping around with women etc etc…meaning he leads a pretty ‘bindaas’ life. And one day, he gets bored with the regular dumb girls he usually goes out with and wants a ‘hindustani woman’…wearing a shalwar…really long ear rings and is a jeegtha jaagtha example of the ‘so called’ Indian traditions and cultures. And that is when he meets Kareena Kapoor aka Pooja Singh aka Gudiya. Pooja works for Anil Kapoor aka Bhaiyyaji aka the villian. Bhaiyyaji recruits Jimmy to teach him English to show off in front of his Foreign delegation due to arrive in a few months. After a couple of songs…Jimmy and Pooja fall in love and end up stealing 25 crores from BhaiyyaJi to repay the debts Pooja’s murdered father owed.

This is where Bachchan Pande aka BP aka Akshay Kumar comes in…arguably the best part of the film. He is hired by BhaiyyaJi to get back the money from Jimmy and Pooja. After a few more songs and fights, BP and Pooja realise that they were childhood sweethearts who were torn apart by destiny. They re-kindle their love for each other and vow to take revenge on BhaiyyaJI who is the person responsible behind Pooja’s father’s gruesome murder. The rest of the story is about how the three (Jimmy, Pooja and Bachchan Pande) do it.

So did I like the movie? I didn’t.

Usually, on a weekend, S and I watch 2 movies in a row. So the next movie we were supposed to watch was Leatherheads starring the irresistable George Clooney and Renee Zellweger. By the end of Tashan, our Bheja was deep fried so badly that we had to go home and instead of Leatherheads…watch Dirty Sexy Money. So, what didn’t I like about the movie. Here goes

  • Anil Kapoor’s HINGLISH. Though it was amusing in the beginning, after 1 hr, it got really annoying. Thank God there were subtitles. I tried ignoring the subtitles for a while but could not understand a single word of what he was blabbering
  • The action sequence at the end of the movie. I have heard so many people make fun of Rajnikanth’s movie because of his fights…like when he kicks…20 men go flying in the air and he comes out without a scratch…? Tashan is exactly like that. Just because it stars the big wigs of Bollywood..there are no comments. The prolonged fight scene at the end was terribly funny (in a bad way) and at times BORING!
  • Kareena. I don’t know if I should include this aspect or not…but I didn’t like her. She looked really pretty in Jab We Met. But in Tashan, she looks like a dried Drumstick. So thin! And the costumes she wears in the song ”Challiyan’ are out right Ugly!

One of the reasons for me to go and watch this movie on friday itself was Raja Sen’s review on rediff. He gave it a three star…which was really surprising. I know he critically rips apart most of the movies….but this one? C’mon…definately not worth a three star.

I’d give it 2/5.

Weekend Dhamaka and Disappointment!!

I have been feeling so jealous lately!! While browsing through some of the blogs on my blogroll, I happened to ‘bump into’ some very wonderful blogs written by women…just the regular stuff really…about life, love, food, books etc etc. That was what I wanted to do…that was the intention for me to start this blog and  either my adopter gets screwed on a timely basis or I am too lazy to switch on the computer and write.

Well anyways, coming to the events of the last weekend….it was ROCKING!!! I was off the Shef for the weekend and it was also the weekend when the cultural evening of the Uni of Shef was being held. I studied for my undergraduate course there and I simply love university life. Shef Students Union is one of the best (if not the best) unions’ in UK with students from various walks of life, cultures and religions. It has a very strong student community. The last time I went to the cultural evening was back in 2004 with S before we were married. Four years later, I was back there to get a taste of Uni life…as in the late night partying n stuff 😉

All dressed up, we girls left our place in the cold. I am sure it was freezing temp outside. One of our frnds’ was in the fashion show and the other was dancing for the Indian Society. The job myself and this other frnd was to shout and support the indian society when ever they came on stage; the duty which I gladly obliged :D. The Indian society went onto with the second prize that night for the best performance which I think was totally not worth it! There were other societies like the Srilankan, Tibetan Chinese Society, The Chinese Society, Afro-Carribean Society and the Japanese society who performed exceptionally well. Over the years, I have always watched the Indian Society and the Hindu Students Forum dance for bollywood songs. Apparently, that is what they consider Indian culture to be.

When my parents studied abroad many many years ago, they tell me that Indian students would play traditional instruments like the tabla, veena etc and perform our traditional dances like the Bharatanaytam, Kathakali etc to showcase our culture. Now, showcasing our (Indian) culture means dancing on a couple fo bollywood songs…and that too the likes of Aaja Nachlay and Jhoom Barabar Jhoom. As a devout Indian…I will support the society by yelling and jumping in my seat whenever then come on stage…but deep inside my heart, I know I am disappointed about the narrow view of ‘India’ they are showing to the people around them who wouldn’t have been to India atall. The only opinion they will make of India is what what they see in the songs…probably the bright colour of the clothes, the jumps and twists and the bhangra!

After the night came to an end, I told my friends what I thought and they simply said…’this is what sells today…this is what people want to see…and that is what we gave them’. I asked them why the Indian society cannot do more to showcase what comes from the south aswell…like Bharatanatyam, Kuchipudi or Kathakali. Why does it always have to start and end with Bhangra or the jhatak mataks of a Bollywood song? Why is not the culture of the south shown to the world as much as of the north and they did not have an answer. I am sure some of them thought I was crazy to think of all this after a night of fun and dance. I am sure they wondered why I was thinking about this so seriously…I was just supposed to watch, clap, yell, jump, dance and then leave. But the thoughts still linger with me. Some of our foreign friends who came upto us and to chat said ‘oh…..your bollywood society did really well and we had to tell them that it was actually Indian and not Bollywood’.

I am scared when I think that in 20 years time the only culture India will end up with is the ‘Bollywood Culture’. We have so much more to offer. What will happen to our traditional musicians and classical dancers if we don’t learn to appreciate what they do? Most of them are arleady living in poverty…not having enough food to eat. The youth of India these days has the money to buy a cd of Eminem or Rhianna when they do not even give a second look for a M S Subbalakshmi, Balamurali Krishna or a Zakir Hussain cd. Remember, the names mentioned above were lucky to be recognised by the public and the government alike…but there are many classical musicians, dancers who have equally good talent but are given a ‘blind eye’ by our society.

I don’t blame globalisation for all this. Being a young Indian woman, if I can appreciate what my country has…why cant others?? Where are we going wrong?

Tomato Pilau

Recipe for Tomato Pilau

Tomato Pilau Rice. Picture copyright of idlidosa.wordpress.com

Preparation Time – 30 mins

Cuisine – Indian 

Ingridients & Quantity:

  1. Rice – 2 Cups
  2. Water – 4 cups
  3. Onions – 1 large sized (Chopped length-wise into thin slices)
  4. Tomatoes – 1 1/2 (Finely Chopped)
  5. Green Chillies – 3 (Slit lenth-wise)
  6. Oil – 4 tbsp
  7. Cumin Seeds – 1 tsp
  8. Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
  9. Cloves – 4
  10. Cinnamon Stick – 4 small pieces
  11. Cardamom – 2
  12. Bay Leaves – 3
  13. Ginger garlic paste – 1 tsp
  14. Salt – To taste
  15. Coriander for garnishing

Preparation:

To a pot, add 4 tbsp of oil and let it heat. Then add mustard seeds and let them splutter. Later add cumin seeds, cinnamon sticks, cloves, cardamom, bay leaves and fry for 5 minutes on medium flame.

Then add green chillies and fry. Follow it up by adding chopped onion and fry till they turn golden brown in colour. Later add tomatoes and mix well.

Once the onions and tomatoes have mixed well to form a paste, add ginger garlic paste and mix well and leave for a couple of minutes.

Now add 2 cups of rice and 4 cups of water. Add salt and mix well and let the rice cook on medium flame for about 15 mins. Keep checking in between.

Garnish with coriander leaves once rice has cooked. You can also garnish it with mint leaves instead.

Tomato Pilau is ready to be served! 😀

NjoY!

Ho Ho Ho…No Cookies for Saawariya!

Image borrowwed from india-forums.com 

All you guys who’ve been eagerly waiting for the two big diwali releases…I am sad to say that Raja Sen and Arthur J Pais of Rediff have given a stick to Saawariya 😦 and that too a really hard one!

Somehow, it doesn’t surprise me. If you’ve read my review on the movie Elizabeth – The Golden Age, you’ll know what I mean. I knew the extravagant sets and costumes would take over the characters in the movie (i.e., Saawariya) and even when I was watching the rushes…they looked pretty dull and unrealistic….Ranbir dancing in his towel and Sonam hitting carpets with what looked like a baseball club!

S and I watched the ‘Blue Carpet’ premier of the movie on NDTV and S really likes Ranbir…some of my friends dont…they think he looks like a ‘cute girl’ but I think he was OK and S wouldn’t stop singing ‘saawariya ting ting titing…saawariya ting ting titing….’ which got onto my nerves X( …but he wouldn’t stop and then I finally said it…OSO will be a bigger hit than Saawariya…and I gave him the same reasons as above but he was sure Saawariya would do well. Mann! Would he be shattered after reading the reviews…and he only watches a few selective hindi movies….

I am sorry guys. I am sure most of you were expecting ALOTTT from the next Bhansali movie…but I haven’t watched it yet…so my review will be coming up very soon…keep an eye 😀

PS: Don’t fret guys….atleast Bhansali has shown us that dancing in towels is not a women thing…men can do it tooo 😀 and I still maintain that Khamoshi is Bhansali’s best….no extravagant sets…just a simple story and great performances..

Adios Amigos