Friday, October 2, 2020
Thursday, October 1, 2020
“Ukridge was the sort of man who asks you to dinner, borrows money from you to pay the bill, and winds up the evening by embroiling you in a fight with a cabman.” - Ukridge
Most of the stories of Ukridge are narrated by Ukridge's friend Corcoran, fondly called Corky. Ukridge is a striking young man often involved plots and schemes to get rich quick. The lengths that he would go to make some money are short of nothing but infinite, except of course to actually work and earn. The hilariously comedic short stories of Ukridge leave you in a fit of laughter as you watch his desperate, comic ways to cash in some capital!
Ukridge is actually Wodehouse's longest-running character although he was only featured in the novel Love Among the Chickens and in ten short-stories in the omnibus Ukridge. I think Ukridge is also one of the most entertaining character ever of Wodehouse, though he is not as famous as Jeeves or Mulliner.
I love Ukridge for the interesting specimen that he is- a seemingly rude fellow to those who are not familiar with his weirdly informal air, a man whose persona is so gripping and charming that people give out credit- only to never get it back again, a man who is all about thinking on how to make money in all ways except the right ones! He is a riot of a character- who'll storm in to the pages and make you laugh, and leave you giggling at his get-quick-money schemes.
You love him, and you are exasperated by him. He seems too charming to ignore, and too difficult to understand. He is one beauty of a character that Wodehouse has ever created.
The best part about the Ukridge stories is that they are short, and give you a full spectacle of a comic tale in less than half an hour. It's the kind of reading that you can do after a busy day, and get back your cheer again!
I say, why don't you try one story today?
Wednesday, September 30, 2020
Tuesday, September 29, 2020
1. Three Men In A Boat : I have to mention this here- This post is also my all time highest viewed post with 19.9K views, and 50 comments, all thanks to Class IX CBSE non-detailed reading prescribed as this novel. I have the funniest relationship with the readers of this review- with more than half of them thanking me for saving them for their "Hitler" teachers! I wrote this review way back in 2011, and the review is as childish, simple, and sweet as I was back then! But, till today- it's my most viewed most on any given time frame!
2. Parthiban Kanavu : This book is a beauty. I love Kalki. And, I am so grateful for the translation by Dr. M. S.Venkatraman for bringing us this classic in a language we can comfortably read!
3. Normative, Positive, Others: In The Analysis Of Law : I was a little surprised by this one, because it was slightly more academic in contrast to the majority of art/literary based posts, or the fun posts, that I usually write! Also, it set me to thinking if I should write more of these small, concise academic posts. What do you think?
4. The Room On The Roof and The Vagrants In The Valley : Not surprised, this has also consistently been a top-viewed post on the blog since many years now.
5. Iah: A Musical Feature : I am so very, very happy this featured among the most-viewed posts in the last six months. I am really happy that a feature on my musician-friend met a wide audience!
6. Murder In Beltour : This story-series that I wrote has been so well-supported, well-received by all. So many people took out the time to comment and text me on what they liked. I am elated.
7. Gripped In Doubt : This short story that I wrote also received a lot of attention, and people came forward to tell me how much they enjoyed it. This post making a cut in the most-viewed definitely has put a smile on my face.
8. From Doon With Death : One of my favorite reads this year!
9. Tanmay: A Poetic Feature : Another young, talented poet-friend I featured! I can only say, thank you readers for supporting all of us!
10. A Quick Reminder: When Did You Last Review Your Privacy Settings? : When was it? If it was way too far back in the past that you don't even remember- go check now!
Is there a post of mine that you enjoyed specifically? Let me know in the comments!
Monday, September 28, 2020
"Sunshine, calling to all right-thinking men to come out and revel in its heartening warmth, poured in at the windows of the great library of Blandings Castle." - Summer Lightning
I have read Summer Lightning, Heavy Weather, Pigs Have Wings, Service With A Smile, and most of the short stories. I love Lord Emsworth, his dramatic family, and the treasured Empress of Blandings. Emsworth is the kind of old man who can charm you till no end with his stroll in the sunshine and his relaxed persona. If you need humour, or drama, or both- this series is your one-stop destination for all of it!
So, why don't you make some cool lemonade, settle down in a nice spot of warm sunshine, and pick Pigs Have Wings to a couple of hours of unputdownable entertainment?
Sunday, September 27, 2020
Saturday, September 26, 2020
ever been kidnappedby a poetif i were a poeti’d kidnap youput you in my phrases and meteryou to jones beachor maybe coney islandor maybe just to my houselyric you in lilacsdash you in the rainblend into the beachto complement my seeplay the lyre for youode you with my love songanything to win youwrap you in red Black greenshow you off to mamayeah if i were a poeti’d kidnap you
I loved this one since I read it a couple of days ago! Every story, every novel, every poem we read actually does send us to a whole new world, and that is the best part about reading books and poems! Hope you enjoyed it, too! Let me know in the comments!
Friday, September 25, 2020
Today I tried baking a cake for the first time. It came out looking decent, though not very clean and sharp. I didn't bother to cut off or level the top portion- so that's on me. When I checked out some recipes, it seemed like: huh, not that tough, really. But, I think baking is something that definitely comes only by practice. Here's how I made the cake:
Thursday, September 24, 2020
"Sit down, Lorimer," he said.There are many ways of inviting a person to seat himself. The genial ‘take a pew’ of one’s equal inspires confidence. The raucous ‘sit down in front’ of the frenzied pit, when you stand up to get a better view of the stage, is not so pleasant. But worst of all is the icy ‘sit down’ of the annoyed headmaster. In his mouth the words take to themselves new and sinister meanings. They seem to accuse you of nameless crimes, and to warn you that anything you may say will be used against you as evidence. - A Prefect's Uncle
Only introduction was needed, and within no time I was too tempted to have not completed A Prefect's Uncle, The Head of Kay's, The Golden Bat, The Pothunters, and The White Feather. These five books were set in four different schools- Beckford, Eckleton, Wrykin, and St. Austin's. And, these were the early books that Wodehouse wrote for school children before he moved on to Jeeves and other series of novels, and they were published later on from 1901-1905.
The school stories give you the perfect picture of an all-boys, English boarding school. If you have read other English novels for children, you might be able to draw a very similar parallel with books like Tom Brown's Schooldays, which has a similar setting around school boys. Also, cricket is a staple in these books. Some of the best bits in the novels involve scenes of the loyalty that the boys show to their House team, triggering fond memories of our own schooldays.
My favourite of the lot is A Prefect's Uncle, partially because I got introduced to it first! The story involves Gethryn, a Head-prefect in Leicester's House of Beckford, and the tale takes you through the lives of Gethryn and his fellow boys as they wade through school life, ragging, house-fights, misunderstandings- all culminating in a cricket matches that seem more like two houses in war!
All these school stories are short novels that hover over or under a 150-page mark. These are an absolute pleasure to read, and would not take more than a couple of hours! Even if the setting is of an English boarding school for boys, I can guarantee that these books will kindle a warm fireplace of our memories that we can sit back, relax, and relish- with an involuntary laughter and a perpetual smile pinned to the face!
Wednesday, September 23, 2020
"From little Cecily, with her fondest love to her dear Uncle Jack."
Ernest confesses on living a life with two identities- the strict and disciplined guardian of young heiress Cecily Cardew through the name of Jack in the countryside, and as the carefree man Earnest in the city. After this confession, Algernon himself confesses to be living a double life. Gwendolen accepts the proposal of Ernest, and convinces him to rechristen himself as 'Ernest' as the name is a big part of why she loved him. Meanwhile, Gwen's mother Lady Bracknell disapproves of Ernest, and forbids any engagement between Gwen and Ernest.
In the meanwhile, Algernon visits Jack's countryside to meet the young, beautiful heiress Cecily Cardew to whom he had been attracted to when Ernest mentioned. He introduces himself to Cecily as 'Ernest', and Cecily presumes him to be the brother of her guardian 'Jack' Worthing. The two fall in love, and plan to get engaged. Since Cecily loved the name 'Ernest', Algernon decides to scrap off his dual identity and rechristen himself as Ernest.
During this time, Gwendolen decides to run away from Lady Bracknell and come to the countryside to meet Ernest(Jack). She chances upon Cecily, and they both end up claiming that they love 'Ernest'. What ensues is a drama that sends you in fits of laughter, and entertains to ensure a smile is pinned on your face!
This is the first time I am reading a play of Wilde, though I have read his short stories before. I absolutely loved it! With other stories like The Canterville Ghost, one is already familiar the unbeatable humour of Wilde. But, this play is a gem! The fluidity and the spontaneity of the characters that has been captured in the script was mind-blowing. This is a short play, and you can read it in a couple of hours. The interplay of the characters, situations, and their hilarious impersonations left me literally laughing out loud, and enjoying every line of this play!
This is a must- definitely must- read!
Tuesday, September 22, 2020
I think Fitness Blender is great, and they have workouts that range anywhere from 5 minutes to a hour- so they have a wide variety of workouts that can keep you not-bored!
"We believe fitness should be accessible to everyone, everywhere, regardless of income level or access to a gym. That's why we offer hundreds of free, full-length workout videos, the most affordable and effective workout programs on the web, meal plans, and helpful health, nutrition and fitness information." - www.fitnessblender.com
Do you love the original, structured versions of Zumba and Strong Zumba? POPSUGAR Fitness is a great place to go for it. They also really interesting range of workouts that incorporates Dance, Zumba, Boxing Fitness, toning workouts, etc. I like them a lot!
If you want a 100% fun, sassy, absolutely energetic dance/Zumba workout that burns calories when you are just dancing away with Ashley's irrepressible stamina, energy, and zeal- go here! This is my absolute favourite. Discovering Fit Body by Ashley was the best thing that happened on the workout-side during this lockdown. The vibe is just so, so very good, and her smile and energy is so infectious that you see yourself smiling all the way through her sassy workouts!
You have to try these three- I absolutely love them. And, when you keep alternating between workouts, you feel much better and more enthusiastic about it, which is important to keep it going! Try them, and have fun!
Monday, September 21, 2020
Sunday, September 20, 2020
Saturday, September 19, 2020
1. Check what apps you have, and filter out the ones that you need.
2. Go to your phone settings once in a while to just check and learn which apps have access to what permissions. If something looks unnecessary, you can turn it off or uninstall.
3. I have found that a lot of apps that I used sometimes had a default setting for running in the background irrespective of whether I used it or not. So, you can change these settings and turn it off for apps that you don't require to keep running. This definitely saves on your battery, especially if your phone is a couple of years old.
4. I am a person who likes only the most necessary, basic notifications on my phone. So, most of the apps have the notifications turned off, so I can see them only when I go into the app. If you get distracted constantly by the notification of any particular app, maybe going through the list of apps in your settings can push you to turn it off!
5. Clean caches, unwanted/spam messages- not everyday, but at least once in a while, maybe?
6. Use google photos, and backup all your device photos. I have found some people having ten thousand or more all on just their phones. I think apart from taking up all that space, your phone crashing can leave you with losing all of it! Just turn on auto backup! Google photos app also has a cool "free up space" option that can delete the photos on your device after safely backing it up on cloud.
How you have your phone is definitely your choice, but these can help you be better ready in case your phone crashes, or you have important data on your phone. So, this is more from the perspective of the safety of you and your data!
Why don't you pick up your phone and look through it? Weed out those unnecessary apps!
Friday, September 18, 2020
Mark Twain once said something that has rung truer than anything else, and in fact only a writer as great as him could have said that in the way he did.
“I didn't have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.” - Mark Twain
To be able to write a meaningful short story takes immense effort. It requires the author to have so much clarity and conviction. It's like a hard, short punch that can send people flat on the ground- but that which takes immense amount of energy to be generated by the deliverer. It's a fitting challenge to incorporate all that you want, and yet keep it short.
If you are writing a novel, then you need to just have a basic idea, and you can develop it in your own pace and fancy- through hundreds of pages. But, a short story needs the clarity of how it is going to end. That is the catch. Most of the time, starting is never an issue, and you will have a core idea. But, a story needs a suitable, believable, cogent ending, too. That is where short stories need a lot of creativity. Within those thousand words you write- you need to introduce your characters, develop them enough so your readers understand how they behave, place something they need and lack, give a plot that takes them through the journey of experiencing an emotion/situation, solve the story's plot-knot and wrap it up convincingly!
I always write short stories when I know how I'm gonna wrap it up. When I wrote Gripped In Doubt, I had the basic idea of a man seeing himself on TV as an accused and being confused. That's how it started. But, though the idea seemed interesting enough to tempt me attempt writing it, I was also unsure how I'd actually solve that case- which I eventually figured and wrote. But, it took a lot of thinking and imagination, and extrapolation in the natural flow of my thoughts. The first thing my dad told me when he read it was that all the while he read it, he was thinking about how I would eventually conclude all that build-up convincingly!
And, I have another short story coming, in which again I had to spend a fair deal of time to make it a neat flow. And hence, I wanted to put up this thought that has been stuck in my head before I put up the story tomorrow!
What do you think? Doesn't Twain's words ring too true!
Thursday, September 17, 2020
“Good Lord, Jeeves! Is there anything you don’t know?”“I couldn’t say, sir.”- The Inimitable Jeeves
Reginald Jeeves, but known for the most part as just Jeeves, is the perfection-personified valet of our favourite Bertram(Bertie) Wooster. Jeeves is probably the most famous character in all of Wodehouse’s creations. From Jeeves offering Bertie, an idle high-class Londoner, the perfect services of a valet to being Wooster’s all-purpose problem solver and undeclared guardian, the Jeeves series weaves a brilliant, classic relationship between these two. In the fondest terms that Jeeves, the perfect butler, would ever be seen to use, their relationship is “pleasant in every respect”.
Bertie Wooster and Jeeves go hand-in-hand in the series of Jeeves stories. It’s funny, it’s charming, and it becomes incredibly close to your heart. When the timid Wooster reluctantly gets engaged to woman after woman because he didn’t want to hurt their feelings, Jeeves always has a grand rescue plan. When Wooster is wallowing in doubt as to what advice he must give a friend, Jeeves always has an answer to sort it out. And, the whole charm of this series is that Wooster is blissfully unaware of Jeeves’ grand plan that saves him, until the end of the stories when he realizes that Jeeves had managed to maneuver him too, though it was only to safety!
So, does Bertie and Jeeves have a perfect relationship? Well, almost perfect. Jeeves was always first to record his disapproval for Bertie’s taste in purple socks and other such fashion choices, which he thought as abominable. But, Jeeves is as Bertie thinks of him: a sort of guide, philosopher, and friend.
“Whatever aunts are, aunts aren’t gentlemen.”
Open a Jeeves book, and you are sure to see an orchestrated grandness by Jeeves to save our Bertie from the most trivial of trivial issues that he manages to entangle himself in. Fueled by the classic English sarcasm and impeccable humour, the Jeeves series entertains you with the stories of young Wooster who is led through life by his perfect valet, whose respectful replies sometimes hide the biggest sarcasm!
Jeeves was a series that Wodehouse continued to write through 60 years! And as you read, you get bits and pieces of these characters revealed to you through the most hilarious stories. The first book that I ever read of Wodehouse was Thank you, Jeeves. And, since then there has been no stopping me from devouring Jeeves novels with the utmost expectations, and they never fail!
If you are someone who has never read Jeeves, then I think you should start with Carry on, Jeeves- a set of ten short stories involving this hit pair, and the first story of which actually gives an insight into how Bertie and Jeeves met! Let me know your favourite Jeeves novel in the comments if you’ve read before! And, if you haven’t, why don’t you pick up Carry on, Jeeves?
Wednesday, September 16, 2020
1. Inside Out
One of the most brilliant movies ever, teeming with innovation and a fresh perspective on something that all of us know and experience every day. The importance and necessity to balance all emotions is something that we all struggle to do even as we grow up. It made me teary-eyed, and melted my heart. It is one of the most refreshing, thought-provoking, inventive feel-good film I've watched. The screenplay and the sequencing is brilliant, and the visuals and animation needs no more say than "Disney-Pixar".
2. Big Hero 6
I love the movie! It is F-A-N-T-A-S-T-I-C! Actually, none of the characters are evil, and there is no real villain in the whole story. I bet you could never ever find characters more lovable and huggable than my Baymax! Trust me and watch it.
This is a film with some spectacular visuals, and Hiccup is such a warm character. As you are drawn into the world of dragons and Vikings, be prepared to be thrilled, entertained, and absolutely charmed!
My dad, brother, and I went to the theatres to see when this released. And, this is one of the fewest-of-few movies where my dad definitely didn't mind animals talking! If you need translation: that means it was crazy good! Also, tip: the credits roll, don't shut your laptop. There's a gazelle that'll thrill you with her voice! Probably the only movie where people stayed for the credits (apart from Marvel movies), thanks to Shakira! If you're still skeptical about watching this movie, I have one thing to say: try everything!
Classic. Unforgettable. Heart-warming and kickass- all at the same time. I love Jack-Jack. I love the Incredibles!
Whisper Of The Wind is a romantic tale of self-realization of the protagonist's abilities, purpose, and dreams. It rides high on the small but vividly mesmerizing world of Shizuku as she travels through her adolescene in style- with love, confidence and a vision of spectacular dreams. The musicality of this anime film is captivating, and ensues a sense of calm and peace. From the creators of Spirited Away, this is another classic, and a must-watch for all age groups!
This is probably the most favourite. I love everything about Minions. I love the idea, conception of the idea, the screenplay, the execution, the flawless masterpiece that enthralls you in a happy bubble. What's not to love about it! If I weren't a grown girl, I'd have probably run around the house screaming gelatooo after the film. Please do yourself a favour and watch it if you haven't!
There are so many more that I love, but a list of seven can only have seven! Which is your favourite animation film? Let me know in the comments!
Tuesday, September 15, 2020
Thank you for showing interest in our firm.
Sure. Let's do it.
Acceptance emails also just get down to brass tacks. It would be with something like:
Please provide XXX details in furtherance of your internship with us.
Somehow, observing this in every single acceptance or rejection makes it so very funny. And, either way, this is the first thing that does come into the mind. After all, we are bound by a code of how things happen normally, I guess! Next time you get an acceptance/rejection- maybe take a good look at it, and break a laugh! Good luck!
Monday, September 14, 2020
Sunday, September 13, 2020
One phrase- we love Dahl. He is one of the best children's author, and I till today love and enjoy his books. Another thing I loved is the illustrations by Quentin Blake. But, what I love more is the poems by Dahl. I have already shared a poem 'Television' by him. Here's another fun one on the Candy-Man Willy Wonka from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
Saturday, September 12, 2020
"In those days, 80 per cent of music sales in India were in cassettes, and only 20 per cent were in CDs. It is a reflection of the enormous changes over the past fifteen years that while India’s first e-commerce site launched with music cassettes, in less than twenty years, music has jumped through cassettes, CDs, iPods and now almost all music is free or streamed."
“We signed a simple agreement with Reliance Industries and got going with our dreams.”
"It is very important that co-founders have sufficient stake in the business to keep them motivated, cover for the high risks through significant future upside and to also ensure they have control in running the business."
"In several of these start-ups, the founders have sold part of their shares at high valuations and personally profited. This can unfortunately create a situation where a founder is no longer motivated to ensure that the company also profits as soon as possible and thereafter only the investors are concerned about where their investments are going. In extreme cases, the investors are forced to step in and directly take charge of the company affairs as has already happened in some Indian start-ups."
He quotes a popular tamil song "varavu yettana selavu pathana" to explain profitability vs. profits: where profitability is an idea and profit is a solid metric. He emphasizes throughout on this clarity as an essential for success.
Vaitheeswaran was the pioneer of e-commerce in India. Even more than 10-15 years ago, Fabmart implemented the things we know as normal today- including PIN-based payment gateway, e-wallets, electronic gift certificates, loyalty programmes, cross border gifting, cash on delivery systems, customized merchandise, and a unique business model that combined both offline and online stores.
Many such lessons are discussed in detail, and the book is a rare story of what can lead to failure. There is a treasure hoard of discussions and lessons that we can take away! This is a great read.
Friday, September 11, 2020
What you need: 1 tsp jeera, some chopped ginger, 4 medium sized tomatoes, 2 onions, 1 cup water, garam masala, cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric, cashews, one cup thick curd, one packet of paneer, fresh coriander leaves
How to make:
1. Take a thick bottomed vessel and add some cooking oil. Let it heat up a little, then put the jeera and let it splutter.
2. Add chopped ginger and onions, and saute for 2-3 minutes till the onions turn pinkish/transparent.
3. Cut up the tomatoes in big pieces and add them to the pan. Cook till the tomatoes start losing water and become squishy. It'll take around 3-4 minutes. Turn off the gas.
4. Take the mixer. Add the fried tomatoes, onions and ginger into it. Add 5-6 cashews to this. You can add red chillis as per taste if you want, I didn't. Grind into a smooth paste.
6. Put the paste back into the same thick bottomed vessel. Add a cup of water, and cook in low flame till the raw smell of the paste goes away for 4-5 minutes.
7. Add a pinch of turmeric, 1/2 tbsp garam masala, 1/2 tbsp coriander powder, and cumin powder as per taste. Also, add salt as required. Let the gravy cook for 5-6 minutes.
8. Grate the paneer, and add the grated paneer to the gravy and gently mix the paneer and gravy. Do not break the paneer further by being too hard or too fast while mixing. Add a little more water after checking the consistency, only if needed. Let the mixture cook for 2-3 minutes.
9. Add a cup of fresh, thick curd to the gravy, and give it a good mix. Let it cook for a minute.
10. Check salt, and add as per taste.
11. Add finely chopped fresh coriander leaves. Switch off the gas.
The dish is done. It is creamy, not very spicy, and has a fresh taste. It is extremely simple to make. One lesson that I have constantly learnt with such dishes is that if you want to increase the quantity, always increase the number of tomatoes and onions proportionately. Do not add water in hope of increasing the quantity as it always messes up the consistency. So, increasing the amount of tomato-onion paste is what you should be focusing on while trying to increase quantity.
I have always like paneer burji dishes, whether dry or with gravy, because you feel like there is no dearth of paneer! The best part is you can add more to it if you want- like chillies/chilli powder to make it spicier, or garlic if you like it. You can also add crushed methi to make this dish more rich in it's texture and flavour. Whatever you add or leave out, this dish comes out nice in all versions!
So, do give it a try!
Thursday, September 10, 2020
Keeping a running editorial also ensured that I have a post for every single day, especially since I have been blogging for almost the last 9 months in a row. There are some days when I have other things to do, or some other work has to be given priority, and I might not have the time to work on a post as much as I'd like to. So, I always had a set of well-written posts that that could go up even on those days. But, did I warn you of a challenge that comes up with it?
Having a nice set of posts that are ready to go up each day also requires maintaining such a line of posts so that you don't have trouble for content later. Imagine you have 10 posts, and you have been posting one each day without writing anything new. You wouldn't even realize 10 days pass by, and will be caught in surprise on the 11th day. Sometimes, you make do with random thoughts in your head, written in a hurry. And, that is precisely what you want to avoid by maintaining the editorial.
Take an example- like today. My mind was off on a couple of other things for the past week, until I come to realize that I have exhausted all the happy, leisurely posts that I had written. I hadn't read anything new either. So, I write a post on the thing that is on the top of my mind right now- why it is important to keep up an editorial.
The key to a good blog is writing regularly. For daily bloggers and writers, and generally all content creators, I think having a set of ready content all the time is very important. It ensures both consistency and quality with no compromises. It is a lesson well learnt, and I am looking forward to this weekend when I rebuild this precious life-saving stream of content that helps me on the days I am truly busy.
Wednesday, September 9, 2020
Shaw was born on 26 July, 1856 at 3, Upper Synge Street, Dublin. He was the third child of George Carr Shaw and his young wife. Bernard Shaw had two sisters. His family was poor. Carr Shaw carried on a business as a retail corn merchant. When Bernard Shaw was 10, he went to his first school called Wesleyan, Connectional school in Dublin.
As a school boy he was a complete failure. Yet he had so much curiosity and would accept nothing he was told without trying to prove the truth of it. For some years, he experimented writing. In the next four years, he wrote five novels, all of which were rejected by every publisher in London. Though he was not a successful novelist the time and energy he spent on his novels was not lost. He made a reputation as a dramatist.
One of his novels Cashel Bryon's Profession became a best seller. Bernard Shaw made his mark all over the literary and creative terrain- as a book critic, art critic, and a musical critic. All his criticism came from sound knowledge. He would not pronounce until he was certain of his facts, and when he did he poked fun in a way which often disguised, except from the most sensitively perceptive, the worth of his most considered judgments.
Shaw rose to be the playwright of over fifty dramatic plays. The popular ones that I have read and enjoyed immensely among the dramatic plays of Shaw are Pygmalion, Man and Superman, Major Barbara, The Doctor's Dilemma, and Overruled. I absolutely love each of these works of Shaw that I have had the chance to read, and I look forward to reading the others! Shaw also has several politically based plays. He was a critic like no other.
He lived up to the great age of 94. Whatever one may think of him, he greatly influenced the development of British political thought in the first half of twentieth century than any other. My first introduction to this brilliant man was through Pygmalion, and I immediately fell in love with the play.
If you have enjoyed any of his work in particular, do share it with all of us in the comments below!
Tuesday, September 8, 2020
Let me tell you how I made the momos today!
What you need for the dough: two cups of maida, oil, salt, water
1. Prepare the maida dough: take the required quantity of maida, add salt, add a spoon of oil, mix it well, and slowly knead it by adding small quantities of water every time until it becomes a dough. The dough should not be too soft or too hard. This is important because a dough that is too soft or too hard will make it difficult to seal the momos after stuffing the filling.
What you need for preparing the filling: onion, cabbage, ginger, capsicum, carrot, beans, one packet paneer
Other ingredients you can add(but I didn't today): chopped green chilli, ginger, soy sauce
2. Chop all the vegetables. You can chop ginger, capsicum, carrot, onion, and beans finely, while cabbage can be chopped wispy(like how it is inside spring rolls). Grate the paneer evenly.
3. Take a thick bottomed pan, pour a little bit of oil. You can use butter instead of oil if you prefer.
4. Saute ginger and onions first, until they turn golden. Then put the rest of the vegetables and fry them well until all the wetness of the vegetables dry out. Let the vegetables cook well on low flame. Add paneer, and gently mix it well with the other vegetables. Let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
5. Add salt and pepper powder as per taste. Mix them all well, and let it cook in simmer for 5 minutes.
Your dough and filling is now ready. Time to make momos!
6. Take a really small ball of dough. Ideally it is the amount of dough you take to make a poori. Dust the ball of dough in maida, and flatten it to the thin sheet. Make it as thin as you can. The thinner they are, the better the momos!
7. take 1-2 spoons of the filling and heap it in the centre of the flattened dough. Start making frills in the edges and close the filling by bringing the frills to the centre. This is for a round momo, you can check out other shapes that can be given to momos, if you prefer otherwise.
8. Repeat the steps until you are done with all the dough and filling.
Time to steam the momos!
9. Take steaming deck/steaming plates. I used our idli plates today because they are the perfect steaming decks for this that we already have at home. Crease the plate well with oil. This is very important. Otherwise, the momos will stick to the plate after they are done, and it would be difficult to remove them without tearing the momo.
10. Arrange all the momos on the steaming deck. Take your pressure cooker, and fill the base with water. Take a bowl, fill it up with water and place it in the cooker. On top of this arrangement, place your steaming deck. Close the cooker, and steam for 20 minutes.
11. After 20 minutes, switch of the gas and wait fro 5 minutes before you open and serve hot!
Time to eat!
The momos today came so well! The shape was slightly bigger and flatter than the ones that we get in the restaurant. But, the taste came out very well. We had it with spicy tomato pickle! It is really simple, and the process may seem elaborate, but I think it is just a matter of getting used to it. It makes for a simple and satisfying dish!
Remember that doing all the small steps like making the dough in the right consistency, creasing the steaming plates, flattening as thin as possible, and other such small tips truly change how the momos might turn out. Do try it out and let me know how it comes!
Monday, September 7, 2020