Swimming in an ocean of thoughts.....

Ask me no questions and i shall tell you no lies :)

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

What would you call it - 'Egg Pizza'?? ~ Gourmet Chronicles

When the sublime white and the sunny yellow merge, a beautiful golden emerges, exuding simplicity at its best. That is what an egg does, when cracked, with the contents inside being beaten and whisked to a creamy consistency that adds life to a dessert or a sauce to name! The quintessential egg has been a through winner in every dish it participates. It blends with every country cuisine and the outcome is always an explosion of flavors on a platter.

Having tried every known dish to me, from this plain jane, I had suddenly ran out of ideas on how to reinvent the wheel to create something that the food critics (hubby and son) in my home would look forward to, without grumbling “what is so different about this!” (I have not one, but two Anton Egos in my home!!) So this dish was taught to me by a very dear family friend Uma jiji, whose impeccable culinary skills casually reproduced an improvised adaptation of a parsi styled omelette in my kitchen. So, sharing the same with my readers :)

Getting to the ingredients right away:

Onions – 2 (big)
Tomatoes – 2 (big)
Green chillies – 3 (cut into small pieces, remove the seeds)
Ginger mashed - 1 tsp
Turmeric – 1tsp
Coriander powder – 1 tsp
Cumin powder – 1tsp
Red chilli powder – 1tsp
Garam masala – a pinch

For the egg beat:
Eggs – 2
Gram flour – 2 pinches
Fresh coriander – 1 handful


  • Slice and dice the onions and salt them slightly. The onions emanate a certain amount of water content that can be drained off.
  • Now, take a pan (or a Kadai), and add three teaspoons of oil and heat the pan. Once the oil is hot, add the green chillies, ginger mash and the sliced onions. The salt in the onions helps in caramelizing the onions without getting them burnt. As the onions exhibit a translucent color, add the chopped tomatoes and toss them well. You may add coriander if you want. (I did)
  • Add turmeric, coriander powder, cumin powder, red chilli powder and some garam masala and mix them well. Add salt as per your taste and let the onions and tomatoes cook until they are mixed well in a puree consistency and produce a beautiful red color.
  • Crack the eggs in a bowl and whisk the whites and the yolk nicely. Now, add some gram flour to the whisked egg and mix the ingredients with hand till the lumps in the flour are gone. Add some salt to the beaten eggs and pour the creamy mixture in the kadai without using a ladle. Close the kadai with a lid for five to ten minutes until the egg is cooked. After the stipulated time, you will find a fluffy omelette with a beautiful steamy yellow interior, resting on a hot and tangy onion tomato base .
  • When plating, the dish slides off beautifully from the kadai, into the plate and looks like an inverted egg pizza with the onions and tomatoes set in perfectly within the fluffy omelet. You may garnish the dish with some grated cheese and serve it with hot phulkas or bread. However for the zest, the yolk and the white bring together with the blend of hot and tangy spices in this dish, no side dish is required.
  • Also, you may cut the omelette with a pizza cutter and have it like an egg pizza! It not only looks like one but tastes like one too!!
P.S: I am yet to take a picture, which I shall soon upload here. Until then, I have googled the below picture that roughly looks like what the above recipe suggests! 

Also, potatoes can be added with onions and tomatoes, which I have not tried as of yet.

And, this recipe may be available on the Internet with various improvisations. So, hope this dish is loved as much as it is, in my home :)


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

To enjoy freedom or to feel free? ~ #Freedomls campaign on Women's Web

Freedom – a word so overhyped, yet so underrated. A word that has a different connotation for every individual.  
A girl in a rural pocket of Rajasthan might value her freedom to enjoy outings to the vegetable market down the street. For a boy in far eastern corner of Bihar, going to school would be a freedom cherished where he has to slog in a coal factory to support his family. A lower middle class sales woman in Dadar, Maharashtra might relish her freedom of taking a break and enjoying the pani puris and bhel puris with her friend sitting by the Queen’s necklace, Bandra over a mid day snack. A rich teen from a well to do family in Delhi might taste his freedom when he sneaks out of home to attend a rave party keeping his parents in the dark about his whereabouts or doings. A married woman tastes her first whiff of freedom as she starts her own catering service from home in the mofussil town of Tanajvur district, supplying tiffins to the workers in the nearby mill where her husband works. Freedom – a word that means the world to every individual in a unique way.

During independence, freedom meant fighting for our country’s identity that was under the grip of a foreign country. And today, considering we have it, the question is “do we still feel free, truly free?” Freedom – What does it mean to you? When will you be truly free? When do you feel truly free?
In my schooling years, freedom meant escape from academic sessions, homework and anything for which I had to give an exam. Be it diving into a pile of magazines (India Today, Femina, Outlook and Readers Digest) or going for a swim without a time limit, be it family outings, socializing and dinners during vacations or be it, festival seasons, studies would invariably take a back seat and enjoying with loved ones was like a freedom I never wanted to end. However, I realized later, it was not freedom in the true sense. It was just a break, nothing more, nothing less. As I entered my teen years, I understood what freedom to go for late night parties or birthday parties held at restaurants/clubs or for that matter, freedom to have a girls night out meant. For a teenager, such small doses of freedom are forbidden fruits. The more there is a curb on the desire to enjoy them, even more is the impulse to get drawn towards it. And then, when I entered college, I lived a hostel life for four long years where I was granted the freedom to live by self. But then I realized, freedom to live on one’s terms in hostel comes with a tagline – conditions apply. There was freedom and then, there were wardens and rules. And after that, when I started working, I actually got the chance to live life on my own terms sans any scrutiny, sans any rules. And, it is here, I would like to believe there is a difference between enjoying freedom and feeling free. We in the current times, enjoy freedom in our own ways by planning our exotic getaways or by indulging in ways that are not scrutinized any more.
However, the questions linger –
When do you feel truly free?
When will you feel truly free?
For me, to feel truly free is a state when we are able to free ourselves from the shackles of opinions, hearsays and judgments passed by everyone around us and despite just entertaining them, we do not accept them without reasoning.
For me, it is to free ourselves from certain inhibitions and mental blocks and step out in the big wide world, befriending people not from the same age group, not from the same clan or not even from the same social class we hail from.
For me, feeling free is freeing ourselves from the fears of unknown, a fear that brings along more unreasonable doubts, irrational thoughts and superfluous theories.
For me, the feeling of freedom in the true sense comes from freeing the mind from negative thoughts, misguided anger, misconstrued views and preconceived notions that often cloud the perception with which we see the world.
For me, to feel such freedom is a spirit that comes to people who brace themselves up with a positive outlook towards life – “Bring it on I say! What is the worst that could happen?”
After all, feeling free all about feeling free to enjoy life with its share of struggles and challenges. What say?


The unheard voice ~ From a nomad's diary

“She is the world’s need, yet the most misunderstood personality
Why does not the world heed, when she cries out in times of adversity?”

A woman of today is no different from the woman of yesterday, despite the education, the upbringing, the boldness or the individuality she carries with her. She still feels as vulnerable in present times as before. The feminist in a woman takes a back seat when trouble comes knocking, and she looks around for help, for support, for a morale boost that seemingly gives her a momentary relief. A woman going through a rough relationship, a woman harassed for dowry, a woman traumatized by roving eyes and groping hands of vagabonds of a demented society when she goes for work, a woman suffering domestic abuse in silence no matter how many degrees her intellect has earned her, a woman raising her children who turn out exactly the way she does not want them to, a woman ailing in an old age home spurned by her children at a time when she precisely needs them, a woman falling into honey traps set by strangers in the virtual world only to be abused and dumped, et al speaks of a change that is yet to happen, or needs to happen.

Despite the education and the work experiences a modern day woman has, she is still tied to a society by shackles of beliefs, traditions and the fears of being ostracized even as her conscience forces her to reckon to pursue what she feels, is right. Every time, we read about a dowry death, or a suicide or a case of abuse, it has been observed that most victims are educated and were probably even working. Then why is it, that a woman allows herself to feel the pain and trauma that she does not deserve at all? Why cannot a woman take a stand when she sees the first streak of injustice slapped on her? Why cannot she be brave enough to turn her back on a society that is still ravaged by meaningless beliefs and falsified egos?

A modern day woman needs to understand her importance. She needs to take a stand for herself when the time calls for it. She needs to speak for herself instead of letting someone play advocate for her. She has to understand that even God helps those who helps themselves. The first incident of injustice, and she must voice her opinion loud enough to be heard. In certain cases, where a woman does not speak of being victimized in the first instance, later gets chained by Stockholm’s syndrome and suffers injustice silently. It is high time, she learns to tackle her issues, with tact besides carving an identity for herself. Learning techniques of self defense is one such means of protecting her dignity, her identity and her self esteem from the miscreants that our society has no dearth of.

And the best, modern day mothers can do is teaching their sons to respect the girls and helping them understand the importance of a woman. Even today, there are mothers who crave for sons. Ironically, it is not just women from rural areas, but also certain percentage of the educated lot who bear a mindset as that. Have those mothers thought for a second, if they wanted only sons and no daughters, what would their sons later do in a world where there are no women? Why have not such women thought of leaving a better generation to this planet? That said, it is time feminism gets rolling in full swing!! It is time to change, for good!! It is high time, the woman of today sets a precedent for her kind and sends a message loud and clear to the society -

P.S: I recently came across an article about a dowry death in Hindustan Times that made me write this post! - http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/freedomfromdowry/they-killed-my-daughter-for-just-a-luxury-car/article1-1252540.aspx

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From the eyes of a grandparent..... ~ From a Nomad's diary

This is the first guest post in my blog....and my first guest to grace my blog is my best friend cum worst critic - my father!! Perhaps, the inspiration to write, to think and be non opinionated is drawn from him. Although his eyesight is not that great as before, he still managed to share some of his beautiful thoughts in the post below. A post most grandparents and parents of today would relate to! Happy reading!


My daughter was shouting at her son for his inability to cope up with her expectations, correcting him constantly and reprimanding him on more occasions (so as I feel). I interrupted to remind her about her childhood days, and to be patient with her young one. She in turn corrected me saying, “appa times have changed!! We cannot apply the same parenting methods now”. That set me thinking, whether parenting changes with times and generations. I remember the words of a saint that parenting is learning and teaching. Now, I realize that for a grandparent,  it is de-learning, learning and teaching.

Yes, parenting methods have to keep up with changing times. Every generation has its own peculiarities. The normal family size has shrunk and aspirations have increased. Opportunities have not kept pace with requirements and hence, the needs have increased. So, luxuries have become essentials and so on and so forth.

In our generation, six decades back it was not unusual to find families with half a dozen siblings or more. Joint family was the norm. As children we were raised in a versatile environment. Fathers were busy making both ends meet while mothers kept their pace with the score of endless household activities. As children were from all age groups, there was a continuity in passing on the values, the games , moral stories, and many other things that modern day play schools and nurseries are imparting. We never felt the vacuum or lack of company at any time. Each member of the family right from grandfather, grandmother , uncle, aunt and parents had different things to teach, probably in a beautiful time-sharing manner. Precisely, life was simple. Vacations were spent in nearby relatives place. Each one of us grew up as per the abilities we had and found employment in family business or outside.

In the next generation the family size shrunk. It was not sudden. The process of shrinking was gradual. As employment opportunities had to be sought beyond the frontiers of native villages, town, cities and even countries, the joint family concept had started losing its relevance. Nuclear families with strong individuals and stronger personalities emerged. A single child or at the maximum, two is normal and in fact even recommended by even the government. Resources, employment, opportunities have not kept pace with the exploding population and has brought in cut throat completion, where the race to be ahead of others has only got more aggressive with time. And it is at this juncture, I feel that even parenting methods have to be in sync as well. It cannot be the same as it was in my generation which compels me to agree with my daughter. And that is what I observe in today’s generation, the irrepressible desire of today’s parents to see their child(ren) grow faster, mature faster, excel faster  and settle faster. Playschools, nurseries and pre-schools are filling in the gap left by the absence of elders in our generation. The only difference is that, now it is now done with commercial interest.

What I have observed in the current phase is, parents of today want to see a child in infant, a boy/girl in a toddler, a teen in preadolescent age and an adult in teen . Following which, parenting today has advanced to a whole new level, where children of today are missing the charm of their respective stages. Probably it has become a compulsion, a necessity which is not that debatable .The positive side is probably the average IQ (Intelligence quotient) of each stage has increased compared to our times. The fallout I fear is, that life should not become so mechanical that EQ (emotional quotient) and SQ (spiritual quotient) hit rock bottom. By which I mean, in this process of excelling in the cut throat competition of today, old age should not appear in middle age itself. Just my views from having seen through the four generations (my parents, mine, my daughter’s and now my grandson’s).

That said, I hope the current generation understands the responsibilities and the challenges of the life ahead them and carries with them, the gumption to face them. On a lighter note, my daughter who compulsively used to disagree on everything being said to her, is now all ears to the advice I 'occasionally' give her. :)


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Remembering the teachers and 15th August ~ From a Nomad's diary

Going by the title, there might be confusion if I have confused 15th August with 5th September. I have not. Do I remember that this is this day our country earned its independence from the British that once ruled the world? I do! Then, why am I remembering my teachers on this day? Why should I not?

Circa 1997: 
The four houses, Red, Blue, Yellow and Green were full of students dressed appropriately as per the vibrant colors in the central ground of Queen of Angels' Convent, Bharuch. There was a drill master and his band of students from all the four houses who held their position near the stage. There were prefects representing each house flag leading with the vice prefects, the whole house of students standing in attention. The vice prefect of the Red House looked at her house flag and reveled in the magnificent color of her flag. But then, her eyes fell on a piece of tied cloth that rose even above her house flag along the central pole of the ground, high up to the sky as it seemed. The moment the cloth reached the top of the pole, it was untied and it revealed its majesty as the saffron, white, the green and the blue blinded her eyes with the rose petals that fell all over. The national anthem had started. The national flag had been hoisted. The feeling was priceless.

Present day:
As I so remember the march pasts, the drills and the variety of musical and folk programs preceded by the hoisting of our beautiful tricolor with Jana Gana Mana being sung with absolute patriotic fervor, this day for many reasons brings a smile on my face, as I reminisce my school days fondly. We had zero periods back then, to practice for the events to be conducted on this day. The practice sessions would start as early as a month in advance. Those days, we quite managed to strike an amazing balance between our academics and extra curricular, despite the fact, we juggled! It feels, as students, we always had a purpose, a goal, an aim to achieve something. Do I sound nostalgic?? Quite!!

For the past two weeks, I have observed the practices going on for this big day in my son’s school. The recitations, the elocutions, the dance and the songs rehearsals, the drills and what not, have every participating child’s face glowing with a verve to perform. It feels amazing to watch the children participate and even more, when the teachers walk that extra mile to infuse the interest in the children, to contribute to an event. To involve oneself, to make a team work and then taking the show on the floor, is one hell of a task for both a teacher and a student. But the best part is, both discover a lot in each other and in themselves, when a teacher and a student work as a team. Which is why, this day holds a very special place in my heart for all the teachers. Not that, I don’t remember that 5th September is a teacher’s day, but I feel the real tribute to our teachers comes alive when we listen to them and surprise them with implementing what they teach us in our lives, despite the numerous instances where teachers feel unsure about being comprehended by their students! 15th August is one such day!

This day brings a feeling of unity in students despite the diversities that they spring from. This day helps every student understand the freedom to express and excel in untold ways sans any inhibitions whatsoever. This day rather strengthens a teacher and a student’s bond as the events they work together turn out into successful and memorable ones. 15th August may be a day we earned our independence. But for me, this and every such day that brings a teacher and a student together, is a day that helps a child become independent from the shackles of unexpressed insecurities and complexes and makes him step out on the stage to unveil his talents. That is what independence in the true sense is, for a student and the teacher!

So, A Happy independence to each one of you!!
Cheers & God bless...!!