Posted in biryani, butter chicken, mughlai, mughlai cuisine, mutton, mutton biryani, tangri kebab, Uncategorized

Handi X-press, M.G. Road, New Delhi

It seems that the mushrooming of delivery outlets is going to continue for long, specially the Mughlai based cuisine ones. Handi Xpress counts itself in this section with the addition of barbeque dishes and the Chinese ones.

Service and delivery: On time and well packed.

Moving on to the food, here are the items I savoured:

Afghani Tangri Kebab: An adorable twist to our decadent Tangri Kebab – the rich cream hugging the leg pieces and lending its silkiness to the succulent chicken. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

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Butter chicken: Too tangy – tasted like tomato soup though the gravy was smooth and creamy.

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Mutton Dum Biryani: Average rice grade, zero penetration of spices to the insides of the mutton and no flavour except the typical hotness of our gem garam masala – not recommended at all.

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Handi X-Press Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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Posted in chennai, covelong beach, mahabalipuram, pondicherry, promenade beach, travel, travel diaries, traveller, travelogue, Uncategorized

Travelogue – the mighty trio of Chennai, Mahabalipuram and Pondicherry

A chauvinistic land known for the Tamil pride is an enigma for us Delhiites. So when I decided to visit this quaint capital, little did I know that a cultural shock eagerly awaited me.

The common thing that I observed at all the three locations was the general laid back attitude – we are used to the swiftness of life and such places offer a relaxed pace – snail’s pace I shall say.

Our stay was at South Chennai, so we decided to visit the nearby places. First in line was the Covelong beach which is a fishermen’s one located on the outskirts of Chennai. The netted boats of the hardworking fishermen adorn the length of this beach of brown sand. This beach is a lovely place to visit but the vegetarians amongst us won’t be too keen on it considering the strong aroma of the fresh catch and the way some bits and pieces of fishes touch your feet as the water caresses your feet.

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Fish lovers can also spot some street vendors selling the local delicacies – I did not dare to try these one though!

If you love colours and classy French architecture and cuisine, then Pondicherry should be on your go to list. The adorable French colony situated about 150km from Chennai can be reached in a four hour road trip along the East Coast road with a running sea view on the left side. My journey was a peaceful one with occasional rests along the tree lined road and snacking on pineapple chaat and coconut water.

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Paradise beach here is one of the major attractions for the beach lovers. Fashioned out of brown sand, it is clean and well maintained. The ferocious waves of the Bay of Bengal keep washing this beach and you can have a gala time drenching yourself in the playful waters. Additionally, there are various local cuisine stalls available here and I was fortunate enough to taste a freshly prepared fish snack – it was okay though.

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If you are going on a long weekend like we went, you are bound to find it too crowded. Too congested to even move and visit the authentic French cuisine based restaurants.

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But you will definitely fancy a walk along the pavement lining the Promenade beach. The late night stroll is relaxing here though the sunrise in the wee hours of the morning should not be overlooked. Promenade is a rocky beach, so the slippery rocks should be treated with caution. There are a host of cafes and hotels along this beach and it is better to book/throng them during your stay there.

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The colourful homes of the French settlers here will leave you spellbound. Yellow, pink, white, mustard, red – you name them, they have it. The classic French architecture is the added icing on the cake. Young girls riding their bicycles to school and guiding you to your destination is another experience in itself.

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Since it is a sleepy little town with a laid back attitude, you would not get the special French breakfast in any of the cafes here before 9am. We thronged the whole white town to look for bakeries and restaurants opening up at 8am and after much hard work, we were able to find the Indian Kaffe Express which serves French breakfast but not before 8:30am. Pretty late ha?

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Mahabalipuram can be visited through the same East Coast Road and is about 50 km from Chennai. It was initially called Mammalapuram and was the capital of the Pallava king Narsimhavarman during the early medieval period. The famous Ratha or chariot temples dedicated to the five Pandavas are the major attractions here – the impressive rock cut architecture with inlaid relief is a sight to behold. There are huge boulders depicting Arjuna’s penance and Descent of the Ganges – ancient folklore hewn on these giants.

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The Shore temple is another attraction here but unfortunately, we were not able to visit this one.

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Best time to visit: October to January

Hotels should be taken on the outskirts of Chennai so as to save time on travelling to the East Coast road.

Better to avoid on long weekends

Posted in Uncategorized

11 years of love ordeal

Was lost in someone else’s world

Wading through those dreary doldrums

Yet you always held my hand

Your heart never forgot my essence….

 

Distance, time and people

Your arrogance and my pride

Menacingly wreaked their havoc

Yet destiny continues to smile in the end…

 

Always found my way back to you

Though never accepted the “love” for you

Was I blind to your presence?

Or too engrossed in meaningless pursuits?

 

Hiding in the shadows

Your gazes never left my back

Your once a day classroom bunks

Still leave a gaping hole in my soul….

 

Took so long to feel

What you feel

To see myself

The way you appreciated me

To fall for you

The way you always felt for me….

 

My stubbornness continues to reach new heights

Yet your patience still moves me

Listening to my complaints

Bearing my tantrums

My sightlessness still baffles me….

 

People ask what I love about you

Is there anything about you

That I do not admire

And I do not feel for?

 

After a decade of twists and turns,

You patiently weave your magic around me

You say you are spellbound

Yet I am the one who is enticed.

Posted in cheese, chicken, chicken dimsums, chicken wrap, choco brownie shakes, dimsums, fish, fish and chips, fried fish, momos, Pasta, shakes, Uncategorized, white sauce pasta

QRO Gourmeteriia by Darkhouse Cafe

A lot of hype was generated around this restaurant when it had opened and it is rightly so as QRO serves the most delectable shakes and pastas!  Pocket friendly for the students, the restaurant serves Continental food in addition to the usual Chinese and Italian.

So here are the dishes that I tried-

Baked Penne Mozarella- For all the cheese and pasta lovers out there, this is a perfect dish for you all. The goodness of penne combined with oodles of cheese is sure to win your heart. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

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Steamed Wheat Dimsums(chicken)- Well I am a huge dimsums fan and a restaurant serving the wheat ones is just heaven for me. These dimsums do have some amount of refined flour in them so as to stop the dough from getting blacked. The dimsums have a dense chicken filling and you don’t need any dip to go with it. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

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Choco Brownie Shake- I have finally found my favourite shake in the town ! Choco Brownie Shakes are served everywhere but QRO sure knows how to make them the best. It is thick(as shakes should be!) and have a right amount of sweetness.It surprises you, delights you and casts a spell on you. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

Fish and Chips- I love this British street food but have never seen it served in a café. The fish had a subtle taste and a flaky texture.The dip was delectable and was the highpoint of the whole dish. RECOMMENDED.

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BBQ Chicken Wrap- Try all the dishes here but never try their wraps as they don’t make them good. The BBQ chicken was sweet in taste and there wasn’t much sauce in the wrap which proved extremely difficult to eat it.

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Posted in dal makhani, gurgaon, indian, indian cuisine, noodles, Pasta, sweet, Uncategorized, white sauce pasta

Being Chef, Sector 14, Gurgaon

So what happens when a few friends who never had any cooking experience, decide to cook a decent meal after celebrating Friday to it umpteenth? Disaster.  And what happens when an idea is born in these mechanical engineers to devise a way to make the life easy for office goers who do not have time to cook? Being Chef.

Being Chef was the first start up in India to come up with ready to eat cooking kits with 5 minute recipes. Their process is well researched, designed and patented.

I recently savoured an opportunity to taste their delicacies and try my hands on their cooking kit:

Penne pasta in white sauce cooking kit: I have laid my hands on such cooking kits before, but this one is extremely lucid and precise – one of the many reasons that it is patented. Every ingredient is measured precisely and packed with single letters written on the top. The recipe card clearly mentions the exact time a step will take for an ingredient to get cooked – the ingredients are mentioned by their corresponding letter names.

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Since they follow a 5 minute recipe procedure, the pasta was boiled, the vegetables blanched and the sauce was already prepared and packed. The quantity served for the price is well worth the money you pay. Totally impressed!

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The pasta turned out to be deliciously drool worthy since I followed the steps to the T. The balance of the flavours, the creaminess of the sauce and the extra cheese gratings on the top made my day. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

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Vegetarian Deluxe Meal: Now that is one platter! You know are having a great dinner when the soft lachha paranthas are gobbled up with a smooth creamy dal makhani, a sweet paneer lababdar, a healthy bowl of mixed vegetables, simple steamed rice, a mellow gulab jamun and a well prepared mint raita.  However the mixed vegetables were quite tangy and the rice was slightly undercooked.  RECOMMENDED.

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Veg Hakka Noodles: I am very stringent when it comes to the simple yet delicious Hakka noodles and these guys passed my test. The noodles strings could have been thinner but were otherwise pretty appetizing. The finely cut jullienes of carrots, cabbage and bell peppers complimented the noodles and the subtle tanginess of vinegar was the icing on the cake. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

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Being Chef Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Posted in Uncategorized

5 days of love

Had heard your stories from companions

But never passed a single thought

An off shore wedding united us

In a dream land away from home

 

Never found a person as nubile as you are

Or as comical

Or as gentle

Or as lucid

 

Never felt this way for years

When the fluttering of butterflies upsets the insides

When the flowing wind fails to distress the locks

When basking in his company feels like eternity.

 

Unmatchable was the frequency between us

Unforgettable was the exchange of glances

Ferocious were our discourses

When we were left alone to wander.

 

I wish we had met sooner

When you were as solitary as me

But brutal are the ways of destiny

When it kept us apart for years.

 

The farewell was cruel with no words exchanged

No good byes

No lingering looks

No departing pranks

 

A new life awaits you

And it awaits me as well

But our paths divulge

After a brief sojourn of five days…..

Posted in Uncategorized

A friend’s love story – Arranged love

Spring is here,

the baby leaves tell me,

Towards the hydrangeas,

the birds flee,

Buds are slowly unfolding their alchemy,

Adrift I am in the confusing sea.

 

Spring is flowering inside my heart,

Working its magic through my veins,

No blood there is, just pure love,

Bewitched I am with someone’s eyes…..

 

They say I am getting mad,

Aye, aye, I agree,

They say I am getting lost,

Nay nay, I am already lost.

 

I wish the winds to carry his essence,

I wish to be drowned in his love,

What sort of sorcery is this, my lord?

Where I am enchanted by his thoughts.

 

 

I am overly seduced by his magic,

Never before has this seemed so tragic,

To the people who know me since eons,

For me, I guess, I am gone…..