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Our Own Food Festival Part 1

While the country celebrates the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi, we have been celebrating our own food festival which is totally in sync with the Ganpati festival as the elephant god also loved food & sweets!!! So since last week, there have been multiple places visited & also loads of great food cooked at home by the lovely Mrs. (Rachita). Do continue reading for the details of the same its yummylicious!!!

Best Cheesecake Ever!!!

Yummyyy!!!

Cinnamon Rolls to Die For…

Last week, we were working from our fort office & right next to the same is a quaint eatery called Lalit Refreshments which serves fabulous value for money food. We ordered some awesome rotis, paneer in a red gravy, papads, pickle and dosas from there for lunch! As you can see in the picture, the food was pretty damn awesome!!! The next day was a holiday, as it was the start of the Ganpati festival. For the same, Rachita baked an awesome cheesecake with cinnamon dusting on it…. matlab post eating that we are totally clear about our patisserie business 🙂 The next day we decided to make Cinnamon rolls. Please note I was there helping Rachita a.k.a. The Food Magician in making this piece of awesomeness; for a 1st attempt, the rolls were delicious & we made a lot of them & kept aside and ate them regularly till end of the week. For dinner that night, was Samosa Chaat which was courtesy my very lovely mother; needless to say it was totally killer… In this whole thing, I forgot to mention that the Bike Rides were also happening regularly considering the weather has been super awesome, I mean no rains. How awesome is that!

My Prized Possession!!!

Hand Tossed Home Made Pizzas!!!

Then came the weekend & full-on party mode was in progress as Ekta was back from Baroda so Beers, Rum, etc. flowed like the Nile… In the morning, Rachita & me had made preparations for hand tossed Pizzas. Do check the pictures in the gallery below. Also then there was some super sensational chocolate cake with yellow butter icing which was in the shape of modak (ladoos) ha ha ha ha! Our tribute to Ganpati 🙂 Next day post morning bike ride & general chilling, Rachita & I decided to go & check some speakers at Phoneix Mills. Visited JBL, Croma & also Bose, the experience at the Bose showroom was the best! They showcased  a demo of the crazy Video Wave Experience which was the greatest sound experience of a television ever!!! If you guys are around a Bose showroom, do walk in and check out the demo its sensational.

You have to taste it to believe it…

Delicious!!!

Droooooooooooooooollllllllll!!!

Post the retail therapy session, we decided to go to Cafe Zoe as we had never been there with Analushka / Anus who’s picture is also featured in the slide show below. The place has a nice decor – is very spacious. Post being seated, we checked the menu. Immediately I ordered the steak burger which was extremely inviting also added some bacon to it, Rachita ordered a basket of breads, fries and also some vegetables with red and white quinoa, also ordered some Hoegaarden. Post a leisurely lunch and a gossip session, we decided to head home and crash for a bit. In the evening, I decided to go out for the bike ride. While riding, figured it’s Gauri day which is part of the Ganpati festival where in a statues of the Goddess Gauri are also bought home & immersed in to the water in a day’s time. There was crazy traffic across the roads but on the bike it was totally a breeze, en-route also visited the in-laws house which I was stalking through the day as it was my random activity of the day (stalking the in-laws building). Ekta rode the bike home with me after the in-laws meet & greet. For dinner there was some crazy super awesome Enchiladas. You have to check the pictures of the same in the slide show. All in all, we been eating awesomeness and just thought the same needed to be posted on the blog. Hope you have had fun reading this post as much as we have had eating the food 🙂 Don’t miss the Slide show below it has some delicious & yummy pictures!!!

Heaven!!!

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Posted by on October 2, 2012 in Helmets & More

 

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The Piekers

After 8 Pie made by Rachita

Wikipedia Says – A pie is a baked dish which is usually made of a pastry dough casing that covers or completely contains a filling of various sweet or savory ingredients. Pies are defined by their crusts. A filled pie (also single-crust or bottom-crust), has pastry lining the baking dish, and the filling is placed on top of the pastry, but left open. A top-crust pie, which may also be called a cobbler, has the filling in the bottom of the dish and the filling covered with a pastry or other covering before baking. A two-crust pie has the filling completely enclosed in the pastry shell. Flaky pastry is a typical kind of pastry used for pie crusts, but many things can be used, including baking powder biscuits, mashed potatoes and crumbs. Pies can be a variety of sizes, ranging from bite-size to ones designed for multiple servings.Random use of a Pie – Cream filled or topped pies are favorite props for humor. Throwing a pie in a person’s face has been a staple of film comedy since Ben Turpin received one in Mr. Flip in 1909. More recently, pieing  has also become a political act.

The Avengers Inspiration!

The Pie, an unassuming dish which a lot of people love to eat or make. To most people in India though, the introduction to this dish was the famous and awesome movie American Pie….. ha ha ha ha ha ha! Agreed that in the context of the movie and the use of the pie was totally skewed versus the one which people eat, but it still established interest and intrigue in this wonderful creation. Today’s article primary is with regards to our, actually more importantly, “The Mrs’” interest in baking & the lovely pies made by her.

Red Velvet Cup Cakes

The story starts off at about the same time we went and got our bike. Rachita, my wife, who is extremely fond of cooking, started to show renewed interest in baking the same was extremely evident when red velvet cupcakes which were absolutely awesome were made by her & were a super smash hit in terms of look, feel & taste. Post this she tried her hand at the Hulk cake (post us watching the Avengers and being in that zone for a long time). You can also check the details of the Red Velvet Cupcakes & the Hulk Cake in our previous posts :-).

Super Stuff!!!

Awesomeness!!!

Then there was the brilliant Baked Philadelphia Cheesecake, and then came in the Pies – starting off with the brilliant Peach Crumble which raised the bar to some crazy level. The crust was totally spectacular add to that the fresh peaches and stuff, absolutely unbelievable! The complete pie was devoured in about 20 minutes by all of us & some pieces which were sent to the in-laws had the same fate. Further to which discussions on the brilliance of the dish continued for multiple days… Next in line the absolutely sensational After 8 chocolate ganache pie! Yup, I know! Sounds mouth watering delicious! Trust me, it tasted even better……I mean this was hands down one of the most awesome desserts made by Rachita!!! Finally there was the breath taking Raspberry Pie which was just a sensational change from the regular taste of pies in your mind. The crust and the use of cheesecake to add just that little bit of pizzaz made this last pie a true slice of heaven!!!

Enough said…. take a moment to check the gallery which has the awesome creations made by Rachita and have a visual treat 🙂 Also below some crazy numbers & facts about the Pie.

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Super Duper!!!

Approx. $700 million in pies (approx. 186 million units) are sold in grocery stores every year. This does not include restaurants, food service or price clubs, only grocery stores. If you lined up the number of pies sold at U.S. grocery stores in one year, they would circle the globe and then some.

According to a 2008 survey by Crisco® and American Pie Council:
•Nearly one out of five (19%) Americans prefer apple pie, followed by pumpkin (13%), pecan (12%), banana cream (10%) and cherry (9%)
•Pie just isn’t for after-dinner dessert. Thirty-five percent of Americans say they’ve had pies for breakfast. Pies as lunch (66%) and midnight snacks (59%) also have a popular following.
•When asked what dessert Americans would prefer a friend or family member bring to their house for a holiday dinner, pie was the winner with 29%. Cake (17%) and cookies (15%) rounded out the top-three spots.

Pumpkin pie was first introduced to the holiday table at the pilgrim’s second Thanksgiving in 1623.

Pie was not always America’s favorite dessert – in the 19th Century, fruit pies were a common breakfast food eaten before the start of a long day.

Pie By the Numbers
•36 million number of Americans who identify apple pie as their favorite
•47% Americans for whom the word “comforting” comes to mind when they think of pie
•6 million Number of American men ages 35-54 who have eaten the last slice of pie and denied it
•27% Americans who believe chocolate pie is the most romantic to share with someone special
•1 in 5 Proportion of Americans who have eaten an entire pie by themselves
•113 million Number of Americans who have eaten pie for breakfast
•75 million Number of Americans who prefer to drink milk with their pie
•32% Americans who prefer no crust on top of their pie
•90% Americans who agree that a slice of pie represents one of the simple pleasures in life
•9% Americans who prefer to eat their pie crust-first
•7% Americans who have passed off a store-bought pie as homemade
•18% Men who say their wife makes the best homemade pie
•2% Women who say their husband makes the best homemade pie

Unbelievable!!!

Pie Personalities
If you love… You are likely to describe yourself as…
Apple Pie – Independent, realistic and compassionate
Pecan Pie – Thoughtful and analytical
Chocolate Pie – Loving
Pumpkin Pie – Funny and independent

Pie Preferences
•More than one-third of Americans have eaten pie in bed

•Nearly one in four women believe that they make the best pie – better than Mom or Grandma
•More than one-third of Americans have craved pie in the middle of the night
The first mention of a fruit pie in print is from Robert Green’s Arcadia (1590): “thy breath is like the steame of apple-pyes.”

 
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Posted by on July 4, 2012 in Bikes & Builders

 

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We Ride & We Eat

This is where this post begins…

Raju Omelette!

By now most of you have figured that post the whole biking experience the next thing which we obsess about is food 🙂 Also continuing from the last few weeks where bike rides have come to a stand still due to rains in Bombay, most of our lives are revolving around food. Today’s post is also about food and mainly it takes off from a post last week “The Rainy Weekend” wherein Rachita had made the most awesome Omelette Pav (bread) even surpassing the great Raju Omlet of Baroda. For all you egg lovers and foodies, the below post is a must read and also if you are travelling to Baroda then you have to visit this destination.

One of my most favorite places in the city of Baroda and the one I recommend to all my family & friends who visit the city is Raju Omlet. This is an iconic  place run by Mr. Raju and thus the name for people who didn’t get it..  My first visit to this place was around 2 years ago basis my in-laws recommendation. The place clearly didn’t disappoint and thus the visit back. This time around, I carried my  camera so as to capture all the awesome sites of the legendary “Raju Omlet.”

So back to the main story –

We ordered Everything!!!

Raju Omlet, from what I hear, started off many years ago as a small cart which has now evolved into this one small restaurant. Please note, the food available here is only egg preparations – the most famous being OMELETTE and thus the name “Raju Omlet”, As soon as you enter the compound, you can smell fresh butter and hear it sizzling on the tava… Loads of people sitting around staring down at their plates with a singular focus of devouring the food. As soon as you walk towards the order counter, you can see the menu which has a selected few options – egg bhurji, egg rice, bolied egg masala, etc. and also egg omelette, which is the trademark dish. So out of pure desperation and hunger, we (accompanied by in-laws and the Mrs) ordered everything on the menu. Post ordering everything, felt very proud and cool considering people at the cash counter looked at us in amazement!

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This is Heaven!!!

Egg Bhurji

Also next to the counter was this gigantic tava with Rajubhai (you guessed it! he is the gentlemen who owns this place) cooking some awesome stuff!!!. I kid you not, he put in 500 gms of butter on the pan, broke a few eggs on it, added tomatoes, chilli, garam masala and made 3 plates from the same!!! That’s when we realized this was not going to be a meal for the faint of heart. Please note, to accompany most items on the menu, there is Pav soaked in butter, soaked to such an extent that in the shine of the same you can see your face – brilliantly delicious! Moving on to the food, we had the bhurji floating in butter, boiled egg masala and egg rice which were worth mentioning. The other dishes were spin offs of these and strictly average. Though post eating all the dishes on the menu, it was time for the trademark omelette. So this it 2 portions of Pav (bread for you firangs) soaked in butter and sliced omelette sandwiched between them served piping hot!!! The taste….unmatched!!! We went through multiple portions of the same in like minutes. Side by side, took loads of photos to confirm the claims of butter utilization, limited menu and brilliant food. Also took a photograph of Rajubhai, the owner, who in his moment of attempted humor, said he was worried that because of his picture being available someone would kidnap him! Lol!!! All in all, this is a must place for people visiting Baroda to go and eat – its simple and totally brilliant!

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Though, the butter and its quantity does take away a few years of life… though totally worth it 🙂

Insane Amounts of Butter!!!

The Legend Mr Raju Bhai!!!

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Raju Bhai & Butter!!!

Spicy!!!

 
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Posted by on June 26, 2012 in Helmets & More

 

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Bikes, Beers & Barbecue

Bikes, Beers & Barbecue was the POA with Rachita, Ritika, Ekta, Vishal, Suneel, Anus & me for last evening! The whole thing came about on Saturday while we were celebrating Ritika’s birthday and, as always, the discussion revolved around food. The minute we figured that the in-laws were going to be out of town for the week, we had a POA ready. It was quickly decided that we were going to have a barbecue with loads of MEAT! This was the moment where Ritika & Rachita started planning the menu. Through Monday & Tuesday multiple visits to online sites were made, menu options were discussed & final list of food was decided.

Some of the Awesomeness!!!

On the menu….crazy stuff….right from –

1)      Sheekh Kebabs

2)      Spicy Chorizo Ham

3)      Spicy Cumin Chicken Sausages

4)      Paneer, Potatoes & Corn

5)      Bacon

Cold cuts were bought on Tuesday by Rachita & the Sheekh Kebab  was being made by Ritika. Wednesday evening was looking awesome! Chicken would also be marinated on Wednesday morning. Tuesday started the day as always with a bike ride past Prabhadevi & Shivaji Park. Thankfully, there was no rains so life was sorted. Also went and tanked up the bike… Ran through the day at work really quickly in all the excitement of the evening ….  also forgot to take tiffin to work. So, had to rush to the nearby mall to grab lunch, then left work, headed home quickly & got to peddar road by 6:30pm. Also carried a bottle of Southern Comfort for the evening, Vishal had ordered some Budweiser’s and Kingfisher Strongs as well, so now we were set for a crazy evening!

Sheekh Kebab Mix

Yummmmyyyyyy!!!

Southern Comfort & Beers kick-started the evening though the same was topped off with some super duper food. To start with, Rachita made some awesome spicy cumin chicken sausages with sautĂ©ed onions which was mouth wateringly spectacular!!! Then came in the veg stuff -corn, paneer & potato which was unreal. this was quickly followed by the chicken and the seekh kebabs which were divine. Post going through decent amounts of alco & food, there were, as always, multiple drunk discussions about people who like Ritika, etc. Bacon & spicy chorizo ham were brought on the table…..this is when the world came to a standstill & the food was totally devoured… Post this, and a couple more drinks, the discussion shifted to a discussion around the Nano – the mini Tata Car and it’s mileage – from there the discussion escalated into whether the car is safe and what the good points of the car are versus the bad. At this point, Ritika who is a Tata employee, on the bad points started severly outraging which was like weird but funny,  (She is going to kill me for putting this). Finally, post everything, we had some awesome chocolate cupcakes made by Ritika, and then we ended the evening by 10:30pm. All in all, crazy amounts of fun, gossip, food, alcohol was had to make the evening totally unforgettable!!!

Chorizo Ham & Bacon!

You have to try this…

The Recipe for the Spicy Cumin Chicken Sausage –

All you need for this are some julliened onions, cumin, a packet of sausages – sliced, red chilli powder, corriander powder and salt, to taste.

Heat some oil in a pan and add in the cumin seeds, about 2 teaspoons. Once lightly browned,

add the onion and saute till translucent. Add in 2 teaspoons of red chilli powder (adjust to suit your tastebuds), half a teaspoon of corriander powder and salt to taste. Now’s when you add in the sliced sausages as well. Cook it for a few minutes, and then serve hot. Your Spicy Cumin Sausages are ready!

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Posted by on June 14, 2012 in Trips & Rides

 

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The 5 Step Approach

Generally out of it… Hmmmmm so the thing is that a lot of times you hear things like take a break or you should figure what you want to do or really like what you are doing, etc. etc… All of us have gone through the same thought process or had multiple discussions with friends on this topic; though, somehow, taking that step seems to be a big issue. Everyone has reasons why they can’t take that step or don’t want to basis all practical reasons.

Step 1 Bike Ride

So how does this work? I guess I am using today’s post to convince myself of this concept. Also if the same works for you then great. For me it has been a work & home approach & trying to treat the same as 2 different worlds. Also, the same has worked by trying to make both aspects fun! Let me also add that I have also watched a lot of TED videos, read material online, etc. which makes things seem like a cake walk but when you actually try to follow them things just kinda become worse… I have thought about the same during multiple bike rides in the past few months. Over a period of time, what I realized is that the bike ride is actually a part of the overall experience of making things fun, so for me that’s Step 1: Get up in the morning, take the bike ride past empty roads….nothing to bother you except the wind in your face and the sounds of the morning. What is interesting is also in the morning, the world somehow slows down and you notice a lot more, e.g. temperature changes like when you pass Haji Ali, the weather is always cooler; then when you hit worli copper chimney then when you start to ascend the flyover near atria, just before that there is always a heavy breeze; marine drive somehow, at least in summers, even in the morning isn’t cool at all – you can always feel the heat on your back or on chest. Marine drive if like me you travel to everyday, then you also notice people and small, small details about them like there is this group of men who come for a walk and are in all white all the time. There are people who are not regulars but are seen on weekends only. Over a period of time all of the above make the bike ride experience super!!!

WIP

Step 2: work with people who you get along with and enjoy being around so that even if you don’t like the work at least people make things brighter, and finding like minded people aint so tough! Bitch about work, bosses and everything around the world and you will find people who are happy doing the same and so for every hour of work there is loads of bitching, so TP which happens. Important to note, if the work is what you like, then thats like icing on the cake. That to my knowledge doesn’t happen & even if it does, from time to time you keep fluctuating between should I be doing this or maybe something else…

Home Securely Away from Work!

Step 3: Get home from work & then shut everything which is related to work & do some fun stuff! Spend time with family, watch TV but shut the work part out. I know for most if the payout is fat, the employer expects you to be connected all the time – my suggestion, kick the job or the employer as in try really hard to keep that time for just general chilling and other work beyond actual work. Shut all push mail notifications, try avoiding calls from work, if you are in a position of power, try not bothering people; if nothing else, you will get a shit load of blessings & goodwill.

Step 4: Take your interest and try giving the same some time. In my case food & video games. Weekends with Rachita are spent cooking, watching TV serials and playing video games. Also a big part of the week is spent deciding what to do over the weekend so then there is always something to look forward too. Also if you have have Saturday’s working, whether alternate or regulars, please quit your job with immediate effect – plain & simple. Trust me your lives will be much happier – a job you will get either today or tomorrow trust me on the same. Also on holidays, keep everything shut. Period. Life will be beautiful.

Always a Good Idea

 Step 5: Make it a point to go out once or twice a week for drinks or food, meet friends and all that jazz. Somehow this will just help you go through the week better as beginning of the week you have something to plan & look forward to and post the midweek meeting, the end of week will also be closer… ha ha ha ha ha! Also from time to time, try and do something which might be spontaneous & random….that definitely is an unmatched feeling which carries on for days…

All said and done, if anger & frustration gets the better of you, like it is for me, separate work life from personal life. Do fun things which you enjoy when you are not at work, don’t bring work home and even if you don’t have a choice there, try easing up the frequency. If you can create your own silver lining to the cloud, then you will be home safe & happy!!! Having said all of this, I got into a review meeting and got severly outraged basis an argument, and most of what I have written went for a toss so re-read it again now feeling a bit better…

 
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Posted by on June 7, 2012 in Bikes & Builders

 

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