Friday, October 8, 2010

Potato and Oyster Mushroom curry

Cooking doesn't appear interesting to me all the time.. So, once in a while, when I feel tempted to cook, I make sure it tastes good..
And somehow, mushrooms have been my favourite experiment at cooking.. Of the two three varieties I tried, I felt todays' is the best.. So, here is the recipe for you.

1 Onion ( halved and sliced big)
2 Tomatoes ( big sized, sliced)
Oyster Mushrooms ( 8 - 10 )
Cilantro leaves (½ cup finely chopped)
Potatoes (Cut into small dice)
Salt to taste
Garam masala
Chill Powder
Turmeric Powder
Cooking Oil
Let's get started. 
1. Heat oil in a pan, add onions and cilantro leaves and fry them till they become soft and translucent.
2. Add mushrooms, spices and salt and saute for 5 to 6 minutes till the mushroom splash water.. 
3. Splash water if the spices seem to get dry.
4. Now add tomatoes, potatoes and ½ cup water to it and cook under medium flame for around 7 minutes.
5. Simmer the stove once bubbles are seen and allow it to cook under low flame for 20 minutes., so that the potatos and mushrooms get cooked.

Your potato and oyster mushroom curry is now ready to serve. 
It tastes great with rotis, and rice. Try it.. I am sure you will love it.. ;)

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Recent episodes @ work

Life has been pretty cool for the past one month.. I was crowned with the title 'Ms. Logica' at the Back2School event @ Logica. This got me in touch with a lot of Syntillations members and I got enthusiastic to work with such dedicated group of people.. Besides being total fun, it taught me a lot about organizing events, playing dedicated roles behind-the-scenes. When an event turns success, all of them backstage are at heights of excitement, and I understand the reason why! This experience is something totally worth it, of all the effort that was put in by the team. 

The first event for which I volunteered to coordinate is 'Stars of Chennai'.. This is an event organized by Plus Dreammakers, an event management organization in association with Logica; Logica being the title sponsor. This is primarily a CSR event with the motive of entertaining the underprivileged children from various NGOs at Chennai. We were team of 4 nominated 'Core Team' members for 'Stars of Chennai'. What I learnt was managing activities to the minute detail..! 

It was heartwarming to see the event turn up a success live on stage. And the prime motive of the event was well experienced. Amidst celebrities who performed on stage, were the cute tots dancing to the tune of music, forgetting everything else in the world! What a pleasure and treat to the eyes and heart it was to see those little kids dance to joy! Needless to say, it was the most satisfying experience to be part of the team in making of the event. I have often wanted to be spending time with children who really need love and care. And this has been the first event which took me close to that wish of mine. :) I feel quite happy and excited about this, and I have pledged to myself to sponsor atleast one child for his/her education in future. 

And next in line is the 'Annual Sports Day' at Logica Chennai held on October 2, 2010 at YMCA Grounds. Nandanam. Here, though I was not so involved with the coordination activities off-event, the experience on-event was truly awesome. It has been ages since I witnessed a fully energetic Sports' meet anywhere. It gave me a new sort of enthusiasm and energy. 

And the amount of energy I saw in each of the participants, needs no description. It was simply fantastic. I should definitely learn a lot from the organizing members of the event, for their efforts were seen live on ground yesterday. We rocked the grounds yesterday, with fun and when required, seriousness in the game. I feel so glad to be part of Logica and Syntillations (the employee social club at Logica). 

I am waiting for more events in line.. Hope they make me more enlightened and enthusiastic to do more for entertaining the fellow community. 

Friday, August 6, 2010

Am I dreaming ?!

Yes, you got me right! This is exactly the idea that Nolan planted in our minds in those amazing 148 minutes of dream-to-wake-up..

Little did I realize that my dreams also do similar things that Nolan projected! We consider our dreams as stupid the moment we wake up; for what we see are seemingly unrealistic objects linked together. But today, Nolan has planted a new form of idea in my mind! 'While we dream, our mind creates and perceives the dream world simultaneously. Our mind does it so well that we do not even realize it'. 

Things that just didn't make any sense to me till sometime ago, make a real difference now. Human mind is an amazing tool whose creativity is used only to a meagre amount when awake! Thanks to Nolan for bringing to light this factor! Many aspects captured in the movie, are something that we naturally miss to comprehend in our dreams! The power of our subconscious!

Jotting down the factors from the movie which I could relate to in my dreams:
  • In a dream, time passes slowly. Just minutes in our real world and hours in our dreams.
  • Never realizing how we got to that spot in the dream.- Ahem! Are we really in the real world?! To think about it, do you exactly remember feeling when you came into the earth! Don't tell me, you know the day and time you were born, your parents told you that!
  • Our mind can think beyond what we think it really can - I remember dreaming that my school auditorium is in the middle of a sea! :P
  • Realizing pain when we get hurt in dreams - 'pain is in the mind'. - If you have dreamt ever that you were shot with a gun in ur palm, you would wake up to realize that your palm hurts. Yes, it did in my case!
  • Something like music, a kick waking us up from our dreams! -

I've never had the habit of trying to remember dreams unless I think the dream has some signifance. Just remembering dreams can make you feel the creative power in you - I feel after watching 'Inception'. Though I feel like writing more about dreams and dreaming, I will stick to wondering and trying to dig the mystery with 'Inception'.

What started as a 80-page film treatment ten years ago, grew into what we know today as the mindblowing 'Inception' by Nolan. I am definitely not here to write a review about the movie, coz I have questions, increasing in number everytime I think about it.

And with such an impressive cast, who can all deliver perfectly, no wonder the movie is a big hit. Di Caprio has certainly done his best and the enigmatic Mal is no way less. Unlike other movies where the characters vanish quickly from the audience' thoughts, this movie reminds us of every character in it, whenever we think about the movie. Di Caprio has proven his skills in his movies, like Shutter Island and this, where he plays someone who is emotionally broken down.

He has made a perfect balance of characters and the right sequencing of the storyline, creating a whole fantastic screening for the audience. Had this script been made by other filmmakers, it is bound to be a disaster or atleast a mess. Nolan has definitely risked in trusting on the viewer's intelligence, which is partly the reason for some people not liking the plot. I would rather say they did not understand it enough to like it.

People have several interpretations of the movie. Maybe this is a-movie-with-no-definitive-interpretation. None but Nolan can actually say on what basis the movie was built. One of the reviews I read said, this is Nolan's own life that was filmed metaphorically and it was the first most acceptable reading in my view so far about inception. I have now watched it twice, and still more doubts arising, I feel like watching it more, and I still feel I will never comprehend!

Nolan is a genius to have left millions of audience thinking, even days after watching the movie. And it takes soo much imagination in real world to bring in something like dreams. The penrose stairs, a train right in the middle of the road coming from nowhere, a lift to reach the different parts of Cobb's memory, the gravity-defying fistfight, linking each level of dream via gravity shift (when the car moves and twists and turns, the Hotel where Fischer is in shifts in gravity), city folding on to itself, etc.

It took almost 60 of the 148 minutes to explain the magnificient dream-world that Nolan takes us to, still making it a point to leave the audience with several questions in their mind. What is more beautiful is how he made a blend of emotional and intellectual sorts, with so much complexity! And those fantastic time-sequencing, with a few seconds for the van to plunge into water, the lift to explode and the slow-motion explosions; a whole city built by Cobb and Mal being broken down, and with all the complexity sequencing the scenes right for the audience to understand everytime where a person comes from and where he is now - all soo stupefying!

There are quite a few plot holes, but I preferred ignoring them because of the other major areas in the movie I was trying to figure out! To mention a few of them - if gravity shift is felt in next level dreams, when the van falls, the effect should be experienced in the other levels as well. How does one wake up from limbo? If that is as simple as dying again to wake up from limbo, why was it projected as a complex deal where the person has to be trapped!? If Mal and Cobb entered Limbo for the first time where they were trapped for 50 years, did they die in a first level dream which took them to their world!? If the totem's very purpose goes null and void if a second person touches it, then Cobb's totem cannot work because it was originally Mal's!

Nolan was not just talking about subconscious, memory and altering thoughts, he has been trying to deal with the very nature of art itself. Screenwriting is an art and he has given a completely new form of life to it. Truly an artist with the power to make millions think and keep thinking.

Shall I say in conclusion - "True inspiration is impossible to fake!"

Picture courtesy: 

Monday, May 10, 2010

A hot and sweet start...

Ahem.. This blog is basically to scribble whatever comes to my mind now and then.. But just to give a hot and sweet start, I have a recipe here for you. :) Read on...
This is a favorite dish of mine from childhood. I remember eating two three cups of it everytime my mom cooked this at home.. And this time I was curious to try it myself.. And surprise! It came out well.  I felt delighted.. Here I come posting the recipe for you to relish!
I would call it the hot and sweet mango curry. 
Raw mango (1 number)
Green chillies (4 numbers)
Turmeric powder (a pinch)
Salt to taste
Jaggery ( 4 spoonfuls)
Water (1 cup)
Mustard seeds (1 teaspoon)
Curry leaves ( 4 to 5 leaves)
Cooking oil (2 teaspoons)
Preparation method:
Slice the mangoes. Vertically slit the green chillies.
Take a frying pan. Transfer the water to it and bring it to boil. Add the sliced mangoes, green chillies, turmeric and salt. Leave it until the mangoes get cooked completely. Add the jaggery to it and mix them well till the jaggery melts and mixes well with the cooked mangoes. Your recipe is almost done. Remove the pan from the stove.
Heat the oil and add the mustard seeds. Let them splutter. Now add curry leaves. Add the prepared mix of jaggery and mango to it. And you are all ready to taste the dish.
This can be an awesome combination for any south Indian lunch. It can also be eaten as a snack in the evening...
P.S.: This is my first new post in this blog. All the other posts are imported from my old blog...

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Take a risk !

Unless you do, its not going to happen!
The dream, the plan, the vindication by triumph,the love that heals, the balmy climate where you can live languidly, the new body you want to build, the education, the career, the home, the travel, the gain, and all the glory.
All that you want, all that you cherish depends on you taking a risk.

Everything involves a risk. Everthing!

Nothing in this world is static, so you have to risk all the time.
Your risk to grow. You grow to stay young, to have hope, to believe in the world as you create it.
Risking isn't easy. If it were, it wouldn't be a risk.

What do you risk?
You always risk losing something you care about when you risk, because a risk isn't a step. A risk is a leap.

What could you lose?
Your belief that you are safe?
You're only safe if you keep on risking.
Your belief that you are happy? You are only happy if you are growing.
Your belief that your work is done? If you are alive, your work is always just beginning.

You need to risk to adapt, to discover, to know, to learn, to give up, to let go, to see fully, to accept the world and what it bestows.
You need to risk to find yourself.
You need to risk to live.

I can.
I know I want to ...
I can.
I know I have to ...
I can.
I can.

Taken from 'Finding your strength in difficult times'

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

...courage !

I vividly remember these lines from my school diary.. While I was at school, once in a week this was sung at the school assembly.. 

It takes courage to answer a call.
It takes courage to give to all.
It takes courage to risk your name.
It takes courage to be true.
It takes courage to dare- what no other will share.
To be standing alone with whom no one will.
To be ready to stake for another man's sake.
It takes courage to be true.
It takes courage to say what no other will pay.
To give each man his share.
Though there will be less to spare.
To be seeking no more than the neighbour next door.
It takes courage to be true.

What is surprising is that, is that it beguiled me even when I was a child.. 
Courage - It can make anyone do wonders in his/her life! 

Be it anything that you feel like doing/achieving, the most basic thing you need to have is courage.. Believe that you can do it.. And say to yourself that it can definitely done as you put in efforts to achieve the same.. I am sure life can do wonders for you..