Friday, October 3, 2008

Pasta a la Traffic Lights!

ahh! now if you've got a fridge that's got a mix of red, yellow n green traffic-signal-looking bell peppers what do you do?! 

First! You open that can of beer for some inspiration! Take the packet of pasta and put into boil! Let the inspiration of a stressful day grab you as you set about chopping chopping chopping all the bell peppers... toss them in with the pasta and add a lil salt! While it all boils take the few tomatoes you have and chop those to bits too! Now.. with all the stress busted carefully drain off the water and chill the pasta under cold running water... maintains the color of the peppers and keeps the pasta from sticking together! Take a pan and saute the tomatoes... open up a few leftover ketchup packs from home delivered food.. add sum chili sauce (red / green.. whatever you can lay your hands on!)... add sum garlic powder and add sum freshly ground pepper (makes all the difference!) and stir it up! Mix in the Pasta and the bell peppers and keep it on slow fire for 5 odd minutes stirring in between  s l o w l y!

Lo n Behold! Garnish with any good looking green leaves... Open the 2nd can and settle down with a nice movie! :)

~ enjoy the weekend folks!

Monday, September 29, 2008

coming back to life!

and where her days have sped she hasn't known!

kitchens have revamped... a lot of bengali food has made it her way... a few cocktails et al! But she has barely found the time to take a pause and write it all out for you! she promises to be back soon! 

as of now life is on a rollercoaster and her peace is far! Meanwhile to keep you interested:

'I  feel sorry for people who don't drink. When they wake up in 
the  morning, that's as good as they're going to feel all day. ' 
~Frank  Sinatra 

WARNING:  The consumption of alcohol may create the illusion that you are  tougher,   smarter, faster  and better looking than most people. 

'When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading.'
~  Henny Youngman 

WARNING:  The consumption of alcohol may lead you to think people are laughing WITH  you.

'24 hours in a day, 24 beers in a case.  Coincidence? I  think not.' 
~ Stephen Wright   

WARNING:  The consumption of alcohol may cause you to think 
you can  sing.

'When we drink, we get drunk. When we get drunk, we fall asleep.  When we fall asleep, we commit no sin. When we commit no sin, we go to  heaven. So, let's all get drunk and go to heaven!' 
~ Brian  O'Rourke

WARNING: The consumption of alcohol is a major factor in dancing li
ke a retard.

'Without  question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer.  Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel  does not go nearly as well with pizza.' 
~ Dave Barry   

WARNING:  The consumption of alcohol may cause you to tell your friends over and  over again that you love them.

To some it's a six-pack, to me it's a Support Group. Salvation in a  can!
~ Dave  Howell 

WARNING:  The consumption of alcohol may make you think you can logically converse  with members of the opposite sex without spitting.

Monday, June 16, 2008

La Casa

Just when I thought I was going to give up reviewing foodie places on this blog, I land up in a place that forces me to entice you to go there! :D

This amazing place in Jayanagar 4th block is a drop out of heaven! You walk in to a green green plant filled zone with beautiful cane shaded yellow lights, wrought iron tables and chairs and an ambiance which literally says.. 'hey! good to see ya! find your comfort while we serve you!'. It is completely unobtrusive! I know exactly what Bar meant when he said that you can come here at 3 in the afternoon on a Sunday, read your book, do your thing, keep havin beer and eatin stuff and walk out when you want and you will feel like its been a purrrr-fect day! :)

We came, we sat and then all we could do was be silenced! Order is as follows:
1. Chicken Nebraska: It's an open chicken sandwich with loads of fresh green herbs and cheese on it! 2 open sandwiches infact served with salad and generous amounts of nice chunky french fries!
2. Golden Fried Baby Corn: 2 bowlfuls - 1 of the baby corn and of the accompanying french fries!!!
3. 1 Pizza: I don't remember the name but the toppings were all verrrryyyyyyyyyy generous and loaded!!
4. 1 Chicken in red sauce and another in white mushroom sauce
5. 1 Macaroni with loads o veggies in red sauce.

Ahem! We were 3 people, all that food and 2 pitchers of beer! We sat for an extra 45 minutes just to find it in ourselves to finish this half pitcher which sat there staring at us as we were near the point of a nuclear blast if any one of us exploded! And the bill u ask?? 1460 bucks ONLY!!!!!!!

Now tell me.. the most amazing food! The most amazing portions too! Really Good beer (good to find a good food place with goood beer as well!)! Sheer and complete unobtrusiveness! And how much do you pay for it?! :)

This is a place which is definitely pinned as a 'must must go'!!!

La Casa
4th Block,Chintal Plaza,10th Main,33rd Cross
Jayanagar, Bangalore, 560011
+91 80 26554613
+91 80 26910732

Italy de baad Punjab!

The pasta's turned out good! And her battery of hungarians stays testimony to that! Even someone who had not had Pasta before loved it! :)

The one in red sauce: Saute lotsa fresh garlic (finely chopped). Add to it again finely chopped tomatoes... saute and more saute till water dissappearate! Then add Tabasco sauce, chili sauce, a wee bit of mustard and loads of grated cheese and tumble it all together! Then add the pasta (obviously, boiled drained, cold watered, salted!) and cook on slow fire for about 5 minutes till the sauce coats the past! Serve as hot and as fresh as possible! (I had a bunch of late lateef's comin over... so....!)

The one in white sauce: Now white sauce is as versatile as there are genres of music! A li'l bit of drums, some good bass and trumpets and saxophones or just a song..! Oops.. I meant some thinly cut onions, maida, salt n milk and lots of black pepper are the basics.. vary it with garlic / nutmeg / mushrooms / corn / capsicum et al! To this delightfully playful sauce add the pasta and let the sauce coat the pasta for about 7 mins and ur done again! :)

The weekend found her experimenting with her brand of butter chicken! Now I've roamed left right and center in 'Namma Bengaluru' for want of some authentic butter chicken and I always come back disappointed! Tried a place called "Punjabi Dhaba" run by a Sardar himself... and was stunned beyond words to notice the butter chicken gravy as thin as sambhar and with curry leaves (kadipatta) in it! Have even gone to 'Oye Amritsar' and come back disappointed yet again! So well... I took it upon myself this time! It was again in Sanju and Anamika's kitchen! :D Now take onion paste.. tomato paste... ginger garlic paste... same old Indian style bhuno it all... add to it a paste of almonds and milk (generous mix)... then add the masalas! And the haldi phobic me again recommends not to add haldi! (i have no clue why I'm so paranoid about it!) and add 2 tablespoons of honey.. Mix bhuno et al.. let it just turn into this overwhelming bulbous mix! For authenticity of color you can add the orange color as well.. now add the chicken and let it cook cook and cook till it not just becomes soft but also absorbs all the masalas beautifully! By now the chef was down some vodka and a shot of tequila and the labor of masala was progressing well! Now add the cream and stir it slowly making sure it all blends... cook for another 10 mins... slow fire... let the smells of it pervade your soul... let the creaminess of it feel your hands... and then ladies and gentleman top it all with almost a cup full of melted butter! Simmer for a couple more minutes.. this time around make sure its covered so that that the aroma of the butter seeps into every tiny shred of the chicken! and yes.. what you have is before you now will be delightfully authentic "kukkad makkhanwala!" :) Goes amazingly well with Gin served neat with chunks of watermelon and chat masala mixed into the glass!

And the crowning glory comes with 'Rum de Rajma!'. C(r)ook up the Rajma as you usually would (without the haldi puh-lease!!!) add to it a generous 60-90ml of apni desi Old Monk! It's not just good for the tatse.. it's awwsumm for the color as well! :) This people was lapped up by an audience of 3 as if there's no tomorrow! [if u wanna know how i do my rajma in detail lemme know! :)]

Stay c(r)ooked! :)

Friday, May 23, 2008

C(r)ooks week in!

The c(r)ook has been having a lot of field days!

She reached home last friday night from work and decided to feed 4 hungry men! (and her appetite rivals theirs any damn day!) :) So it was 15 eggs in a yum curry! Keep the eggs to boil and settle down with the onions and tomatoes! Shortest, simplest way to make the curry nice and thick is to run the onions and tomatoes in a mixer! Saute the onions till pink, add ginger garlic in generous amounts and continue to 'bhoono' and then add the minced tomatoes and stir once in a while till it changes color from a soft pinkish red to a nice deep brown-red! Add the masalas as u please and then 'bhoono' some more! If you have coriander/mint chutney at easy access adding some of it is a good idea too! There on ad lots of curd and stir around till the oil separates... add a lil water to get to desired consistency! Meanwhile the eggs have boiled and u get one of the mushtandas to peel all 15! and then you're lucky if he offers to cut them too! :) plonk em in and keep on slow fire for 10 mins while the 'blub blub' begins to sound like music to the ears as the smell wafts and settles in every corner of the house! Lo and behold! :)

Egg curry tastes best with onion rice! Add coriander to it if you please.. the flavor is amazing! However, if you have just come back from office do with the shortcuts of Jeera Rice / Bread! :)

On another given day in the week she decided she needed some TLC and so fell sick! Her knight in shining armour stepped into the kitchen and lo and behold was prepared scrambled eggs with mushroom and cheese.. hint of mustard.. some garlic powder and it tasted right out of a gourmet chef's kitchen! :)

Her quick fix breakfast for him... Mushrooms and tomatoes sauteed with garlic powder, butter, salt and pepper! Bread covered with cheese slices and then dump the tomato mushroom dumplings on and thereon layer it with sausages! I tried the cheese and onion sausages this time around and have fallen in luv with them! You can try any kind you please!

If you are the Jamun loving kind of person here's a coktail u can try:
whiskey + soda + jamun juice + a wee lil bit of coke/pepsi! It sounds really absurd and looks a very funny purple but it tastes damn interesting!!!! :)))

If you have the time and are brunching before going to office a quick fix is mooli parathas! They are a lot faster than the aaloo and gobi...! Just grate it, squeeze out the water... add the masalas.. add anar dana (its not being there will not make a difference.. but its being there makes all the difference! :) ) and add a green chilli cut real small! Tip: Go slow on the salt!

A pasta quick fix: Take a packet of knorr soup (the white base.. non tomato).. add a weeny bit of water to it so that it becomes a thick sauce... tumble the boiled pasta in... add a bit of mustard and some pepper / tobasco sauce! Garnish with sauteed bell peppers in all colors! :)

And that's a lot! I plan to experiment with some more pasta tonite! :) May the guinea pigs be well fed! Ciao! Happy C(r)ooking!!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Truly dhaabe di Chef!

The knight in shining armour (more so on a shiny bike) calls her his 'dhaabe di chef!' And it was proved beyond any inkling of doubt!

6 PM: Ok! You have 8 people coming over... and the 3 of us are already here!
Hmmm..... need chicken, paneer, smirnoff and tomato juice! Run Lola Run!

7 PM: Shopped, home and in the kitchen!

The Paneer pasanda?!:
Cubes... ginger garlic paste... salt; pepper; soya sauce; chilli sauce! Leave for 10 mins and saute in a pan till charred on all sides!

The Chicken story:
Chicken breast pieces... a packet of curd... 2 eggs... salt; red chilli; ajwain.. all mixed! ("Moteeee.... kitna gandh machaa rahi hai!" To this pat went the reply: "a good chef (ah!) is not afraid of messy hands!) :D Anyways.. after creating the 'gandh' by mixing all the stuff with the chicken you leave it for 10 mins. Then... char grill in a kadhai...! Sprinkle loads o aamchoor.. and ur set! :) The compliment: "maamla antshant hai!" :D :D

Keep the bloody mary's flowing and the chicken rolling... get a bday cake and voila! They had a bday party for her bonehead on a bike! :)

Happy Birthday and Bon Apetit!

I now rightfully proclaim myself "dhaabe di chef!" for managing the feat of feeding and satiating with bloody mary's (where the bartender was Granpa!) 8 people with the notice of a mere hour! (to which Big Bro stares open mouthed and goes.... "It's a feat that takes a week to accomplish you know?!!!) :D

Friday, April 25, 2008

The New Dhaba!

The dhaba is not out of business! :) Worry not!

The dhaba was busy being shifted to a new location, a new home! The inaugural ceremony of the new kitchen was held yesterday with a full Punju meal in tow! :) The perfect house warming gift: a set of Brilliant Shot Glasses and Beyond Brilliant Martini Glasses! :D (luv ya Ammu!)

Chicken Curry
Dal Makhani

Now the chicken curry is easier than any other dish to make! The tricks: Marinate the chicken in a lot of ginger garlic paste and forget for 2 hours! Use mixied onions and sizable chunks of tomatoes... use fresh ginger juliennes and use moderate quantities of the 'khada masala' (bay leaves, the star, dried onions, pepper balls). Trick: Freshly done homemade garam masala and 1 fresh cut green chilly to garnish! Most of the times it cooks in it's own oil and water and u don't need to add extra water for the gravy... if you do jus spice up the masalas a wee bit to avoid losing taste! :)

Dal Makhani: This was a first time experiment with her! 1 cup black sabut dal (do not... DO NOT ask me names of dals!!!!!), 1 cup Rajma! (It's best if you let it stand in water overnight... in case you forget, boil them for about 5 mins and then put the whole thing in a flask for an hour! And then pressure cook a li'l extra!) :) Minced onions and tomatoes and a ginger garlic paste... all bhunoed well.... all the regular masalas... a lil extra coriander powder and no haldi at all! Cook as usual... slow fire it for as long as you have the time (food on slow fire definitely tastes different and better!) Add cream / milk and let boil... top it with a dollop of butter / cheese! :)

Folks ate in complete silence... :) She knew it was good!

Accompaniments this time were a myriad variety of cocktails since we had in our company a cocktail guru! One of em was oh so refreshing! (muddle fresh cut ginger, add lime cordial, add vodka, sprite and soda... top with long cut cucumber!) The Master reveals that the taste is of the cucumber... the spirits pull out the juices and lo and behold is the most refreshing cocktail I have ever had! :)

Also in tow: A bottle of Chardonnay! :) Cheers to the new kitchen and more importantly... Cheers to the bundle of friends who gobble up whatever is cooked in ani da dhaba! :)

Monday, March 17, 2008


She was back in the kitchen of heaven....! And on the menu was Shepherd's Pie and Chicken Stroganoff!

But before the chef was unleashed... she was served the yummiest 'prawn pickle'! Awwwsum is not the word! :)

Well... we set to work... angelic helper(s) (yup... lucky me with 2 beautiful helpers!) boiling potatoes and cooking rice! Marinating the chicken in the basics of ginger garlic paste, salt n pepper! Peeling n chopping onions and pureeing the tomato! Chopping every veggie that came into sight! Mushrooms, capsicums, babycorns et al! :)

Started work on the Shepherd's pie... :) onions, ginger garlic, and the pureed tomatoes... bhunoes till beautiful n aromatic... lil salt n lil pepper...! Add the keema... :) bhuno bhuno n bhuno some more... add soya sauce to make it nice n brown and pressure cook the entire mix for half hour! :) Layer a bowl with mashed potatoes (boiled potatoes, milk, cheese, salt n pepper - all in generous punju quantities!) Pour in the mince and cover with another layer of potatoes! Cover with cheese and bake for 10 mins! :) The whiff of it will tell u it's done! (for a saner indicator - browning cheese on top!)

The chicken was being worked in parallel... take the marinated chicky n pan fry it in butter till its well done. The veggie cutting spree?! Well take em all n saute in butter... now there's a trick.. if u have mushrooms then saute those first.. (let their water evaporate), then add the baby corn n other veggies (it's a greeny dish so avoid the reds n yellows as much as u can!) n then add a ton of capsicum! Don't cover while sauteing or the capsicum will lose its beautiful green! Also add slices of fresh cut ginger.. the aroma is sinful! Now over the chicken add 'maida' and bhuno! (me and bhuno happen to be old frenz i guess! :D) Pour milk over the entire mix and let it get thick while stirring! Once at desired consistency add salt, pepper and oregano and the let the flavors mingle... To this tingly mingly mix add the stir fried veggies! Surround with rice (any form and flavor... i used soya-chilli rice) and serve piping hot!

An amazing kitchen helps to prep up awwsum food! :D And the angels in the kitchen along with nice heady homemade nutmeg wine go a long way n preparing a hearty full-fill-ing meal! :)

Bon Apetit!

Sunday, March 9, 2008


When saturday has been working and the week has decidedly taken its toll on you... head for Stones! :) Nothing too fancy here... the overall darkness with light camouflaged under posters of bands and singers works well for the place!

Only Beer will be your elixir and a plethora of good snacky food..! :) Several choices exist for wholesome food as well. Each pitcher is accompanied with a plate of peanuts!

The place does not have a DJ! Make a request and the entire CD of the band will get played... (well at least till somebody else makes a request!) The music is not jarring and thus perfect to unwind with after a long week!

Service with a smile and good service! Added plus, given the location, there's lots of parking place in the surrounding lanes and by-lanes!

We were a bunch of 5 nuts out of which 4 work in the IT Industry! To each his/her own travails and a place to catch up with each other's lives over beer while unwinding... tat's Stones fer ya! :) A bunch of snacky stuff, topped with Dosa Chicken (it's a must have given the nice fluffy dosas!) found their way right into our starved stomachs as conversation flowed all around!

100 Feet Road,

Ph: 41481572, -73, -

Monday, February 25, 2008

Home away from Home! :)

First up a biiiii....g thank you to the special hosts for having me over!

Next up.. the dhaba shifted base today and made the 'jannatofied' kitchen of Anamika & Sanju it's own! It's a kitchen straight out of the fairytale of cooking!!! From the stove to the chimney... it's like miraculous! Touch the cabinets and they open! Lift the cupboard doors a wee bit and they open up like 'khulja-sim sim' to reveal themselves! Even the dustbin cabinet was like touched by a magic wand! So the c(r)ook was in Kitchen heaven and having a ball of a time! From a futura cooker to perfect non stick stuff and wooden spatulas! From decorated mats to the awwsum cutting boards to the lovely selection of cups and bowls to the perfect glass ware to the oh so perfect e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g!!!!! This chef now knows what her heaven would be like!

It started with a weeny bit of chaos with the mutton being uncut but that was corrected soon enough! :) The chef had a lovely glowing helper (who ended up doing most of the work!). Anyways... :D On the menu:
1. Chicken in Brown Sauce
2. Mutton 'Kohlapuri'
3. Kerala Porotta's (ordered!) (bracket 2: spelling duly corrected after a Mallu yuppie jumped up and screamed: parota --> WRONG and SACRILAGE. It's a different story altogether that it's sacriLEGE! ;) )
4. Rice (nice n spiced up!)

The chicken was easy... with sauteing the onions, ginger garlic and capsicum... taking the tomato paste and reducing it over high flame... giving it a dash of salt, pepper and soya sauce! Meanwhile we have been marinating the chicken in ginger-garlic, salt and pepper and 'Jack Daniels!' :D Grill the chicken over some more JD and once tender and done pour the sauce over it and mix in the sauteed bowl! :) Cook a bit more for the flavors to seep in and lo n behold 'Chicken in Brown Sauce!'

The mutton demanded a whole host of onions and tomatoes.. standard desi masala... :) hold off on the haldi here again! Add to it a whole packet of 'Parampara Mutton kohlapuri' masala and bhuno it nice and well till it leaves it's oil! Pressure cook with bay leaves, big elaichi, black pepper balls, cloves and cinnamon sticks! :) Give it close to half an hour! And there you have it!!

With a salad of onions, tomatoes, carrots and olives and the parotas and rice the whole meal was one of the best she managed to turn out! (The kitchen and the angel helper had a huuuuge role to play!) :)

To top it all came ice-cream and eventually an amazing cup of tea made by the "host"! :)

It was a blissfully beautiful day... "perfectly perfect"! (To go with it was a nice heady glass of home made nutmeg wine!) :)