What I didn’t like about Sarkar Raj

I went to the movies yesterday to watch Mongol but my plan backfired. After some emotional blackmail’ing’ by S, I sat through Sarkar Raj. I was not mad about watching this movie after reading Raja Sen’s rediff review…and I also had an inkling that it would not live up to the prequel Sarkar.

I cannot get myself to write reviews about movies that I don’t like so please read Raja Sen’s review here. Instead, I will let my dear readers know what I didn’t like about the movie.

Here goes…

  • Welcome to the world of Sarkar Raj where people never smile…No..Never. It is depressing.
  • Meet Anita Rajan (aka Ash Rai Bach) who is supposed to be the CEO of a multi billion dollar Energy Company but is not half as dynamic as she is supposed to be. Instead, she takes people management, leadership and communication skills tuitions from Shankar Nagre (Abhishek Bachchan).
  • One wonders why this ‘CEO’, who is supposed to be sitting in her air-coditioned office signing off deals and contracts lingers around Shankar Nagre. Doesn’t she have better things to do?
  • Why Shankar Nagre confides in the CEO about his dark secrets and fears is above my understanding 😛 I mean…the man just lost his wife (Avantika aka tanisha) and it’s not even been a week and is already smitten by the London returned chick who walks like a model and talks like a plastic doll 😈
  • There are too many twists and turns that by the end…you loose the plot and find it difficult to piece things together…who is who…who did what…what’s he doing here…isn’t he supposed to be dead etc etc are some of the common questions that pop up in your head…
  • Amitabh is definately toast of the movie. Rest do an OK job. Ash’s job is to cry and talk about the power plant…that’s it.
  • Overall, the movie is dark and depressing. Don’t waste your money….rent the dvd once its out or even better…watch it online 😀

My Rating: 2/5

PS: New Photographs in my Photoblog. Do take a look 🙂
 

SuperDuper Excited!!!

I have a new Word Press Photo Blog now 😀 Yippeee!!!!!! A collection of all the pictures I love and the new theme Monotone is FAB!!! Perfect theme to show-off your photos 😉 I recommend it to one and all. I already have one at photoblog.com but think I like the wordpress one better.

A new blog means more work which means I will HAVE TO wake up atleast by 8 in the morning. Nevertheless, I am excited 🙂 

Recipe: Banana and Walnut Cake

I spent the morning fighting a bee which refused to leave my territory. The bloody thing. I hate bees. I still remember my friend who was bit by a bee on her cheek and she swell up like a balloon. Nyways, seems like this bee won’t be coming back anytime soon….Muahhahaa (evil laugh) 😀 {Why can’t wordpress have emoticons? Saves me from typing crap!)

Okies..coming to the recipe…here goes..

Banana and Walnut Cake

Preparation Time:  30-45 minutes (Quicker if you’ve baked a cake before)

Cooking Time (in a pre-heated oven at 180 °C): 50 – 60 minutes
Ingredients:

  1. Kitchen Scale (Max upto 2 Kgs)
  2. 3 medium Bananas, ripe if possible (approx. 400 g)
  3. 300 gm Self-Raising Flour
  4. 150 gm soft Butter
  5. 150 gm soft Brown/White sugar (Demerara)
  6. 2 medium Eggs (at room temperature)
  7. 80 gm Walnut Kernels
  8. 2 Tsps Lemon Juice
  9. 2 Tbsps Olive or Vegetable oil
  10. 1 Tbsp Vanilla Essence

Ingredients for Cake Topping/Icing (Optional. I bought a ready-made Icing Sugar tube and decorated the cake. Little effort and saves time too…esp when you are super lazy like me! :D)

  1. 125 gm full fat Soft Cheese
  2. 75 gm Butter
  3. 200 gm Icing Sugar

Kitchen Equipment

  1. 2 large bowls to mix the ingredients
  2. 900gm loaf tin (rectangular, square or circular)
  3. Small amount of greaseproof baking paper
  4. Kitchen Whiskser/Handheld Blender/or just a Fork 🙂

Method

Note: Butter must be soft. The best way to achieve this is to measure out the butter an hour or so before
it is needed and leave it at room temperature. If this is not possible, break up the butter with a fork
and beat it for a minute or so. If all else fails, put it in a bowl and float the bowl in warm water.

  1. Turn the oven on, setting it to 180°C / 350°F / Gas Mark 4.
  2. Next, grease the loaf tin with margarine or butter, and line the tin with greaseproof baking paper.
    It’s not essential to cover 100% of the tin but make sure that it lays as flat as possible on the inside
    of the tin.
  3. Peel the bananas and mash them with a fork until they are really mushy.
  4. Chop up the walnuts reasonably fine.
  5. Place the butter and sugar into a mixing bowl and blend together with a fork. The idea here is to mix the two ingredients thoroughly and at the same time incorporate as much air as possible into the mixture. Mixing with a fork in a figure of eight shape will help to incorporate air into the cake mix.
  6. Now, stir in the bananas and chopped walnut kernels and mix thoroughly.
  7. In a separate bowl, add two eggs and mix with a blender, whisker or a fork until there is a layer of froth formed.
  8. Now sift in the self-raising flour, 2 Tbsps at a time to avoid any bubbles or balls in the mixture and mix thoroughly in a figure of eight.
  9. Now add this mixture to the bowl containing the mixture of butter, sufar and walnut kernels.
  10. Add 2 Tbsps of Olive or Vegetable Oil and 2 Tsps of Lemon Juice and mix thoroughly again in a figure of eight with a fork. The oil and juice will keep the cake moist.
  11. Pour the mixture into the loaf tin, smooth it level and place in the oven for 45-50 minutes.
  12. After that time take it out and test that it is cooked by piercing the cake with a fork and if it comes out clean it’s cooked. If not cook for another 5 minutes and retest.
  13. When you take the cake out of the oven, take it out of the tin and place it on a wire rack or something similar. This will stop the cake sweating and getting damp.
  14. Allow the cake an hour or so to cool down before icing it.

Method for Icing

  1. Make the icing by pouring the icing sugar, soft cheese, butter and vanilla into a bowl and mixing it all together with a fork.
    Spoon the icing onto the cake and spread it evenly with a knife. Pop a couple of cherries or walnuts on the top if you want to decorate it.

Don’t fret looking at the length of the post. This is a very easy recipe. The only time consuming part is the mixing and the baking. You just need to concentrate a little while measuring out the ingredients. Trust me…a home baked cake is much more delicious than the ones you get outside.

Recently Captured :)

Our long weekend will be ending in about 5 hours from now and what a wonderful weekend it was. S, I and couple of our friends went to Blemheim Palace near Oxford City. Except for the cloudy weather and the elaborate history on the life of Sir Winston Churchill at the Palace, it was excellent. The gardens were beautiful. Apparently, the current resident of the Palace is John George Vanderbilt Henry Spencer-Churchill, 11th Duke of Marlborough (No…I didn’t by heart the whole thing…I cut and paste it :D) and how lucky is he to be living in such a beautiful place.

The pictures below were taken in one of the palace gardens’ called the ‘Secret Garden’…sounds mystical doesn’t it? And it is equally beautiful. Two of the pics below…

PS: I thought the pictures looked good in Black & White. If anyone wants to take a look at the coloured ones….let me know 🙂 Hope you guys like ’em.

I will also be posting some pics of Jousting.…sport of the rich and noble 😀 If you don’t know what I mean…watch A Knight’s Tale starring the late Heath Ledger. So Stay Tuned….! 

Neelakurinji

PS: Click on the image for its full size

|I took this picture when we went on a tour of a ‘Spice Garden’ near Munnar in Kerala.

Below is some fascinating information for those interested about the flowe in the picture.

The Neelakurinji or Kurinji is a unique shrub species that blooms in Munnar and the hills across Western Ghats. Neelakurinji (Strobilanthes kunthiana) belongs to the family of Acanthaceae. The species name Kunthiana has been derived from the River Kunthi. The genus has around 300 species, of which at least 46 occur in India.

Apart from its beauty, is that it blooms only once in 12 years. The mass flowering and subsequent death of the Kurinji is the subject of hill folklore.

Neela means blue in Malayalam language and Kurinji is the local name of the flower. For those in Munnar, the blooming of Kurinji flower is a reminder that their lives have gone past another twelve years and for those from far off places it maybe once in a life time opportunity to witness the Kurinji flowers covering the hills of Munnar in a blanket of blue.

More about the flower here.

Is it Italy or Switzerland?!

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I was showing random pictures to my parents and asked them if they thought this picture was taken during my trip to Switzerland or Italy. They said together ‘Switzerland!!!’. They were surprised when I told them it was taken in Munnar (Kerala) 😀

Doesn’t the place look beautiful. S and I went on a high-speed boat ride on the lake (and we both don’t swim).