Friday, March 26, 2010

Aloo ka paratha by Abhi, Experts are back to the kitchen



After a long gap from the kitchen and cooking, yesterday we decided to cook something delicious. My cousin who is now in Cochin suggested the idea of aloo ka paratha. I am lazy these days and that is a reason I suspend cooking for some time. I called Jk and we left office early, bought vegetables and wheat flour for cooking aloo ka paratha. My new house mates started staring at me as if they doubt my expertise in making paratha. I convinced them that I have proven experience in making them and they will not be dissatisfied with the final output.



Let’s see what the ingredients were for the preparation. This was made for 8 people and I have marked the quantity accordingly.

1. Potatoes (aloo) – 1 kg
2. Onions – ½ kg
3. Green chillies – 250 gms (I normally say the shop keeper to give it for 5 rupees : ) )
4. Curd (2 packets of ½ litre)
5. Masala that includes red chilly powder and turmeric powder
6. Salt to taste
7. ghee
8. Wheat flour

I gave the potatoes to Nandu(my cousin) and asked him to remove the outer covering. Potatoes should be boiled until they are ready to be smashed as paste. I chopped the onions and then heated them on mild fire and oil. After they were light brown, I added turmeric powder, grated green chillies, red chilly powder to it and heated it until they were ready to make way for the smashed potatoes to enter. These were further heated adding salt to give a better taste to the stuffing.



The process of making dough out of the wheat powder was not hard and took another 10 minutes to get soft. The utensil was not capable to handle 1kg of flour so I repeated the process once again until the entire flour was used. It is idle to keep the dough closed with a lid in a container for 10 minutes so it turns softer.



I used chapatti maker to make aloo ka paratha. I plugged it to the power outlet and kept it for six minutes. The chapatti maker is idle for a month and I expect it needs a warm up. The next process was to stuff the ingredients cooked into the dough and cover it so no pieces escape the covering. This is a process that needs real time expertise and it will consume most of your precious time.




The dough with the stuffing is then dipped into wheat flour and placed in the chapatti maker for final preparation. Heat both the sides for a minute and you have the aloo ka paratha ready for consumption. We placed the paratha on a piece of paper and applied ghee over it. Ghee can be applied depending upon the cholesterol levels. My age and health permits the use of ghee :)



This process continued until I had 32 parathas ready. We also invited Dileep to taste the delicious (really yaar they were delicious) parathas.



After the preparation of hot parathas, curd was served in round and flat bowls with salt as required and all enjoyed the tasty parathas. In my house all do not prefer cooking inhouse and thus the utencils were limited. The hunger never permits waiting and thus we managed newspapers as a base to handle the hot aloo ka paratha while others were busy with plates.



I ate 8 parathas and this continued until my stomach was completely satisfied. Dipping aloo ka paratha in curd… mm… the taste is still in my taste buds. This was a nice experience and as you know sharing adds an extra value to your cooking. Satisfaction is not in seeing your recipe turn into the desired output but, watching other people enjoying it.

Though my representation lacks, when compared to other food bloggers but my enjoyment and satisfaction has no comparison.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Ernakulam KFC broke hearts, reached KR bakers for heart filling dinner



Ajay is now in Ernakulam. He is the son of my Aunt who accompanied me to Ernakulam this weekend to celebrate his vacations. We went to KFC Cochin with a plan to have a bucket of chicken. Kentucky fried chicken started its branch in Ernakulam recently. KFC Ernakulam is in the left hand side while moving from Vaitilla to Edapally. KFC Ernakulam occupies two floors of the shopping complex whereas the rest is used by gold suppliers. “We”, the usage consist of Jk, Ashok, Dileep, Ajay and I.



We entered KFC and Ashok ordered two buckets of chicken. We managed to find a suitable place on the second floor. There were many people in groups, chatting and enjoying the chicken by KFC. We started taking chicken pieces one after the other and soon found the bucket empty; however none seemed to satisfy his stomach. Dileep confirmed his dissatisfaction through his weird facial expressions and they were further iterated and confirmed by Ashok through his words. Ashok suggested visiting another hotel named KR bakers near Vaitilla, Cochin for completion of the process for dinner.



Jk was last but not the least when it came to opinions. He reported his feedback with a comment that KFC’s bucket is not worth a purchase and further added his comments praising the bucket he uses at home for bathing. I as always have no opinions and feedback, however I was also half filled when it came to satisfaction. It was a new experience for Ajay and he thought preserving his position by keeping mum.

Ashok mentioned his KFC meal three times a day continuously for months while his stay in Singapore. He said that there were no hotels available near to his residence and he had to depend on KFC meal. He soon become fat and started experiencing serious health issues.



We were able to catch the attention of the people in KFC Cochin through our laughs and jokes. Jk suggested to start a small store in front of KFC that serves good food, and that can satisfy the people who are out from KFC enjoying their in-EXPENSIVE food. I am sure none of us enjoyed the KFC chicken and the bucket but we were able to spend the time creatively laughing and remembering old incidents.



We went to KR bakers and ordered one full tandoor chicken. Dileep, Ashok and I ordered roti while Jk ate Naan and Ajay was satisfied with parotta. While the food was getting ready we restarted our chatting session which was halted at KFC. Ashok mentioned his experience about the taxi drivers when he was in Mumbai. He said that 90% of the taxi drivers in Mumbai are guanine and charge the amount as per the meter readings. Dileep said that the travelling in auto rickshaw is worse in Tamil nadu.

The discussion was further focused on Mumbai and life in Mumbai. Each of us shared their experience with the people. Ashok also happen to mention a rare incident that took place when he was in Delhi. He said that he was dropped to the Delhi railway station by an auto driver at 50 rupees and during his return he was asked for 100 rupees by another driver. He started negotiating; however no positive results were noticed and he decided to move in search of another driver. A police man watching this situation called Ashok and enquired the problem. After identifying the cause he personally helped Ashok travel in the Auto with the rate he gave when he came to the railway station.



The dinner was heavy but we enjoyed it. The month was very busy and I missed my kitchen completely. I plan to resume the operations by next month.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Rebirth of a young man OR boy - no specifics



One fine morning, I get up and notice free flowing messages in my inbox that say “Happy Birthday Abhi”. I recognized the day and found it ending my twenty fours and pushing me into the twenty fifth. Yes, today is my Birthday. Is this a rebirth? I do not see any wrinkles below my eyes, neither any muscle development. That means I am still young. I wore a Light black jeans and Blue-check shirt to mark the new beginning.



I visited Chotanikkara temple in the morning and requested some blessing from the goddess. You won’t believe that I was the last in the queue that could successfully enter the temple while the main door was closed for morning prayers. If I would have been back by a single person, were the chances to worship goddess in vain. I am lucky to witness goddess and so mark my success with the rebirth.

I am late for sleep. It is 3 Am in the morning and I think I should sleep. I will continue this later. I had a celebration so thought to share with you all.
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