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My First Road Trip part 2

The next part of our awesome road trip was about 30 Kms from Pune, a small village known as Saswad, which houses an awesome Fort known as Jadhavgadh. We started our journey early, had breakfast at the Machan and got out buy around 9:30 am. The drive back to Lonavala took about half an hour considering the crazy fog, we also got lost in one of the by lanes, anyways we hit the expressway soon enough and made it to the outskirts of Pune in about an hour and a half. Here it gets tricky passing Pune and onto Saswad took a good 2 hours, crazy traffic and bad road. At a time even google Maps failed and we had to ask a cop for directions (surprisingly he looked and behaved like Manoj Bajpai). After a fairly crazy ride up a fairly broad ghat (Mountain) we reached our destination.

The first thing you notice about the fort is the people, they are all dressed in traditional Maratha outfits. Our welcome was accompanied by a blow of trumpets and a crazy beating of drums by a frenzied security guard, we also got the very firangi “tilak on the forehead” treatment. We quickly finished all the formalities and headed towards our room, please to note had booked a suite which was a surprise for the lovely Mrs. I was surprised by the room – it was big and had a large balcony with a crazy view – do check the image below for the view. We settled in and ordered food, some traditional chicken in coconut gravy with bread, the food was finger licking good. I would strongly recommend that you try the local cuisine in the Hotel; it’s absolutely to die for. After a quick siesta we moved towards the pool, the Mrs quickly jumped in, me on the other hand thought the water was a little too cold for my liking and hence went on to check the Fort.

The Fort is not very large, if you have been to Rajasthan it may almost seem like a Haveli what stands out is how well it has been maintained and how the entire Hotel has been built around it. The lawns surrounding the Fort are massive and make for some great bird and flower photography. I ended up spending quite a lot of my time taking pictures. Late evening we decided to head back to the room – post more chilling time we went for dinner – the dining room is pretty standard looks like something out of a clubhouse, but the waiter suggested that we dine at the balcony. This turned out to be a great suggestion as it was only us and the experience of eating there was amazing. The starter we ordered was something called Jadhavgadh ke Sholay (Fires of Jadhavgadh – loosely translated) a tandoori paneer dish; we ordered it basis the interesting name – not bad it was, for main course we ordered mutton for a change, a dish called Mutton Tambya Cha Rassa – hands down the best mutton dish we have eaten, the mutton was softer than the paneer, we finished the meal with an awesome Kulfi (local hand churned ice-cream).

Day 2 was pretty much filled with photography, swimming, dinning had an absolute blast, before I forget the Breakfast – absolutely amazing and they had a decent spread also; to give you an idea, my breakfast included muffins, breads, juice, cereal, poha, parathas, grilled veggies, juice, eggs to order and milk shake – I could not move for a few hours after that but totally loved it. Moving on, day 3 is when we left for Mumbai, again got out by about 10:00 am the drive this time was surprisingly fast, the roads were empty and we reached the expressway in about 40 minutes. From there on it was a 2 hour drive to Mumbai – we stopped at a Khopoli, did not feel like eating so had ice-cream and then drove on. Took about an hour 15 to get to home once we hit Mumbai, the little Ashoooooo as usual welcomed us (he also makes an appearance on our blog 🙂 All in all, our first roadtrip was kick-ass we had a blast stayed amongst trees and in a Fort, drove across some of the best roads in the country, could not have asked for more during our mini vacation.

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Posted by on September 4, 2012 in Trips & Rides

 

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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 sautéed 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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