Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Dreaming of: Breakfasts in the park

Today is the kind of weather that makes it absolutely criminal to sit inside, especially in a room with no windows. So therefore, I have my Bohemian 'birdie' to keep me company.

It's a day for a healthy, leisurely breakfast but in the absence of that most key ingredient, time, French toast in my favourite nook at home will have to do.

Here's looking forward to days where relaxed breakfasts in the park are possible - here's looking forward to weekends!

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Feel full, not foolish

New Year resolutions are aplenty. And some I know I will forget.

But the most important one this year is to eat healthy. And by healthy I mean a completely balanced diet - a diet of inclusion and not exclusion. A plate should be made of the rainbow and be consumed intelligently. Food is meant to be thoroughly enjoyed, bite by bite and in moderate quantity. The body should be able to process everything that is put into it - not just the 'healthy' stuff.

As somebody said, "eat just enough that you feel full and not foolish". Maybe that 'somebody' is just me.

Happy and colourful 2016 everyone!  

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Eat like a local

Eat like a local. Finally.

Did something I should have done long ago. Accomplished something that's been on my list for two years now. Put laziness aside and practised, practised, practised. It just took a withering glance from somebody to get me here - while I didn't appreciate the look of derision at the time, I'm grateful for it now.

While most might wonder why the big fuss, for me it's a moment of great pride.

I am no longer the idiot foreigner who didn't try hard enough to embrace the way majority of the world's population eats. 
I am no longer the lazy Indian girl asking meekly for a fork at a Chinese/ Thai/ Vietnames/ Japanese restaurant. 
At my favourite restaurant, I am now free of the acute frustration of having to pronounce caa correctly (Cantonese for 'fork' which sounds a lot like cha, 'tea') to make a hurried (and often) frowning girl understand that I want tools to eat with while she makes me acutely aware of wasting her time. 
I no longer have to be part of a party of two with a fork for one (yesssss!)

And, as a colleague pointed out, I can now be deemed 'intelligent' by the Chinese elders (woohoo, I am suddenly all smart and super brainy now :)

So, bring on that lovely, complex, exciting East Asian food. I am ready to eat things they are meant to be eaten.


Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Blogging on the go: jasmine memories

Handful of tea leaves, one cup of green tea with an incredibly poetic name - green pond reflecting the falling star - from the Sichuan region of China. Powerful enough to stir up 23 years of memories from Jamshedpur, India.

No, I haven't been drinking Chinese green tea for most of my life. It was the bold fragrance of the tiny jasmine flowers released by the addition of hot water. Those tiny flowers floating serenely above the forest of green triggered a part of  my memory box that I rarely visit.

Vivid rushes of excitedly collecting raat ki rani while waiting to go to school at 7am; observing snails manouvre the garden path littered with jasmine; my grandfather slowly walking down the steps to walk in the jasmine garden; studying on the steps while intermittently staring at the garden and the world beyond the boundary wall; playing with friends, running up and down the verandah; nights spent staring at the moon from the bedroom window; looking up from a book to see my then crush (now husband) riding by on his golden Saffire right when I was thinking of him. 

Jasmine, the background fragrance of my growing up years.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Prawn rice: a recipe

I cook so infrequently that I actually feel a great and deep sense of accomplishment on occasions I have managed to cook for two days in a row. So imagine my sense of pride when I realised this is my 8th straight day of cooking regularly. And that means - 1) I've been eating right, 2) I've been sleeping well and 3) I've been spending less. Yay! 

As they say, "success breeds success" and I am so encouraged by these positive changes that I want hope it leads to a lifestyle change! Anyway, this morning my lunch options were last night's dal chawal or bread omelette. Craving for something interesting, I decided to put the leftover rice to use, made super yummy prawn fried rice in less than 20 minutes and skipped off to work. The contents of my lunch box helped me smile through what would have been a morning full of grimaces!

  1. Boiled rice, fluffed
  2. 1/2 big capsicum cut in cubes
  3. 1 small onion, diced
  4. 1 spoon olive oil
  5. 6-7 peeled prawns, defrosted if frozen
  6. Salt
  7. Pepper
  8. Soya sauce
Heat the oil for a minute or so on a low flame
On a medium flame, add diced onions and cook till slightly translucent, stir frequently
Add the capsicum and while stirring frequently, make sure it cooks through while staying slightly crunchy
Add the defrosted prawns and mix well 
Add salt and pepper as per your liking
Once prawns are cooked (they cook real fast), add the rice and mix very well
Once every grain seems coated with the oil and seasoning, top off with soya sauce
Mix well and, serve. Or in my case, pack!
Happy, skippy lunch is ready to go :)

Morning rush = no pictures. The only picture was sneaked in under the rather bemused expression of my senior colleague!

What was in your lunch box today? Let me know and I'll try it :)


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