Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Yummy Aloo Paratha and its recipe

Every time I see or smell the taste of Aloo Paratha my mouth waters with my jaws wide open. I completely go irrational and I cannot  control myself at any point . It is completely magical how my taste buds react but having said that I'm not shy to eat Aloo Paratha at any place or point of time. In Kathmandu you can get the Aloo Parathas at the local Tanduri Nan Shop. The famous one is the Lumbini Tanduri Nan Outlets which are spread across the capital.  The specialty of this outlets are local Indian cuisines like dal makhani, rajma, panir tikka, dal fry, egg curry, chicken curry etc and most interestingly the prices are very less. It cost on averagely 20 to 30 for on Aloo Paratha   and one Paratha is more than enough to give you that feel of yummy and full.  You can find  the outlet close enough if you search for it. If you are hungry and if you want to have a full appetite with good taste in your mouth then you must try the local Aloo Paratha.

It is delicious and splendid...................................  

  • Wheat Flour 1.5 Cup 
  • Salt 1/2 teaspoon 
  • Water 3/4 cups+
  • 3 teaspoon Oil 
  • 2 teaspoon 

  • Potatoes 4-5 medium sized 
  • Salt To Taste 
  • Oil teaspoon 
  • Cumin Powder 1/2 teaspoon 
  • Coriander Powder 1/2 teaspoon 
  • Chilli Powder 1/2 teaspoon 
  • Green Chilli Finely chopped 1/2 teaspoon(Optional) 
  • Corainder leaves finelt chopped 1 teaspoon 
  • Ginger-garlic paste 1/2 teaspoon

1. First of all make the dow with  flour salt and  oil. Mix the flour with  a pinch of salt and mix it with water. Remember not to put too much of water. Mix the mixture slowly and patiently  increase the water according to the need.   

2. For the filling you need potatoes and above mentioned ingredients. Mix all the spices with the mashed potatoes. You can use boiled potatoes which is more easy. if not then boil the potatoes and  just add  all the ingredients. 

3. After the making the dow and the filling, sprinkle some flour before rolling the roti so that the filling does not come out or stick in the rolling pan. Make a small roti and place a ball of filling in the middle, then roll edges  and make it a big roti 

4. Heat the pan with shudhha Ghee, make sure the pan is well heated then put the roti in. Let the roti gently fry in the pan. Just keep a watch that the fire is not high. To make it crisp keep a watch on the roti, as soon as the ghee starts to give the golden cripsy look and a  yummy smell take it out and serve it with a achar....


Delicious Chatamari

Wiki defines Chatamari, “Chataamari (Nepal Bhasa:चतांमरी) is a kind of rice crepe. It is a special dish of Newars. It is a special form of newari “roti” made by rice flour. It is used specially during ‘the guthis’ of newars. It has been very popular among the other cultures as well, and many restaurants of Kathmandu serves this food, and some restaurants even have the names like Chatamari Restaurant.”

Recipe details  

For Rice Base: 
  • 2 cups rice flour
  • 3 eggs (beaten)
  • 1 cup water (depends on consistency)
  • 1 cup ghee or butter
  • Pinch of salt Salt to taste
For Toppings: 
  • ½ lb choped/minced chicken (any other meat can be used)
  • ½ cup finaly chopped onions
  • ½ cup diced Tamatoes
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • 3 tablespoons cooking oil/butter

Process:1. Heat oil. Fry onions, garlic and ginger until light brown. Put in minced meat, salt and pepper. Add tomatoes just before it’s done. Cook it until meat is nearly done.
Rice Base:
2. Mix rice flour, eggs, water and a pinch of salt to make cake-like-batter. Heat butter over a pan. Pour in some batter and spread out into a thin crust. Cover the pan and cook just on one side for few minutes. Don’t turn onto the other side.
3. Put the topping over it and cook for few minutes again with lid.
4. Serve hot with spicy Achar or chutney.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Food speaks the language of Tradition and Culture

Food is not just a commodity; it holds much to it then to its literal meaning. Having said that food not only explores the possibilities of opportunity but it is a way of life or existence. It is said food not only satisfies your appetite but it psychologically makes you feel at home. Like such, the Nepali tradition of food certainly highlights a great deal of importance in its cultural and traditional values.

“To know the food is to know the culture and tradition,” This statement certainly justifies the meaning as food that entails different aspect of traditional values. Nepali food is something that gives you the right taste and flavors. In Nepal there are around 50 different ethnic groups, with distinctive languages, dress, and customs and to degree cuisines. In remote areas, there is little choice, you eat what you grow. But the foods prepared during festivals are rare and unique in their own way. Nepalese recipes consist of many spices and herbs, which are used in each dish in a different proportion and manner. This makes each recipe unique in its own way. Heavily influenced by Indian and Tibetan cuisine Nepalese food still hold its unique taste and presence where it is highly considered healthy and extremely nourishing.

Highlighting, that there are several regional variations in Nepali food, but one dish more than any other has come to characterize the country’s cuisine it’s the dal-bhat-tarkari. Dal is a lentil sauce that is eaten with the bhat (rice). Tarkari is a generic name for curry vegetable and can be prepared in different ways according to seasonal availability of vegetables and local preferences. It is often served with achar (pickles) which do much to enhance overall appeal.

Like such, the Thakali food is yet another rich version of dal-bhat-tarkari which is popular for its tastes and species. The Thakali food has also aspired its ways to the Nepali Restaurant Industry and to dining habits and may be due to its full diet or vivid taste it is very popular among Nepali as well as foreigners. The Thakali food comes from the tradition of the people of Tibetan affinity who settled in Thak-Khola Valley. Thakali cuisine also uses locally-grown buckwheat, barley, millet and dal as well as rice and dal. The Thakali food set generally consist flavors of rich spicy content that shows the rich and vast array of exploration of taste buds.

Now talking more about the taste variation, Nepalese love spices and pickles, it’s an essential part of their diet. Pickles mostly come salty, sour, sweet or tangy, all big on flavor such that just a spoonful is needed with the meal. It adds flavor and it blend into any type of dish and has become an important part of Nepali cuisine.

Looking and understanding the taste, dal bhat tarkaari is common among Newars, one of the oldest inhabitants of Kathmandu but they have incorporated it in a variation of taste. Another popular item among them is chiura: dried beaten rice, served with an array of meat and vegetable curries and pickle.
Outside the Kathmandu Valley where the variety of vegetables and ingredients is much less, diets are simpler. Above 3000 meters, of altitudes, corn, millet, buckwheat, barley and wheat take over as staples. The everyday lunch and dinner of many hill villagers is dhindo, a thick mush of boiled ground grains, doctored up with a soupy vegetable sauce of the ubiquitous.

Nepali saag (spinach), gundruk (dried and fermented vegetable leaves) or sisnu (nettles) are commonly used according to availability. In the far west, hill dwellers subsist on heavy bread made from a crude brown wheat or buckwheat. Barley, potatoes, dairy products and a few hardy vegetables fuel the highest Himalayan settlers of Nepal. Traders to Tibet cross 6000 meter passes carrying little more than dry tsampa (roasted fine-ground grains) to mix with butter tea, and perhaps some dried cheese (churpi) or meat. If you’re up in the Khumbu, Langtang or Manang/Jomsom areas, be sure to try some tsampa. You can also buy it in Kathmandu’s Asan bazaar. The delicious, nutty flavor and nutritious, high-energy content make it an ideal trekking food. You may have less success in downing a cup of Tibetan butter tea, known to put off most Westerners and even Nepali lowlanders.

Tibetan influences increase the further north you go, although perenial favourites, such as the momo (a stuffed dumpling, fried or steamed), are widely available in the lower regions too. In the trekking regions, you are likely to encounter little other than Nepali food, which some people may find slightly monotonous. The choice is greater in the Terai where you will also find many excellent Indian dishes.

Perhaps, the traditional food in Kathmandu has been monopolized by few of the restaurants creating their own name and fame in giving people a new taste in same old traditional way.

Bhojan Griha is one of the oldest restaurants located in Dillibazar with the taste and feel of ancient days. The property is located in a traditional setting and dates back over 150 years. Originally belonging to the royal priest of the king of Nepal, it’s a historical monument. A renovated history of 4 storey building, it Taste authentic organic Nepalese food then what more can you expect. The food is served with local
folk dances and songs with the tradition of Nepali essence. Dining at Bhojan Griha, meaning House of Food, is a unique experience of splurging into the taste of Nepal. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner every day.

Similarly, Bhancha Ghar is yet another destination that highlights the enigmatic presence and essence of Nepali tradition. It has been more than two decades that the Bhancha Ghar has been catering the needs of foreign guests. From 1989 AD, Bhancha Ghar has been promoting Nepalese cuisine with no priority for an entirely Nepalese restaurant. Bhancha Ghar is a total experience that serves not only food but a feeling and essence of Nepali tradition. With spices making the taste the variable meat dishes and vegetarian dishes prepared with Newari style, accompanied by house blends of raksi, gives it the taste of Nepali at its best. Center of focusing the lifestyles of various ethnic groups of Nepal the cultural show gives you the feel of true Nepali taste. Established in a faithfully restored aristocratic household and completely furnished with authentic Nepali craftsmanship, it offers fine traditional food in a relaxed and intimate setting.

Likewise, Nepali Chulo is yet another destination located in Lazimpat Road. The decor and interior highlights the Nepali tradition and culture that gives you the rich taste and flavor of its richness and essence. The building is an ancient Rana palace that is loud and clear about its standing. It offers the supreme traditional Nepali and Newari cuisine with dynamic cultural programs. The menu covers a veg and non-veg set plate, a thali on which will come all your smaller dishes.

Tukuche Thakali Kitchen, of Durbar Marg in Kathmandu, offers excellent food. The name itself Tukuche is an ancestral home of the Thakali people. The Tukuche serves 100% the traditional Thakali food that taste, smells and presents itself with the name and quality. In menu, one can find a wide selection of items that are typically Thakali as well as a smaller collection of items created to cater to customer demand. Usually, people who come here tend to go for the set meals, which are convenient and filling, but the other items on the menu are also worth exploring. With the essence of giving the taste even the meat used here is exclusively of hardy mountain goat or chicken. Among the several Thakali restaurants in town, Tukuche is one of the oldest establishments offering the best in terms of quality taste and presentation. Over their years of service, this place has gained a lot of ground in the local market. It’s certainly a great place to experience authentic Thakali cuisine.

Food in Nepal is not an option it’s a way of life. People have been eating food for many reasons, but in Nepal the food speaks the language of tradition and values. It’s a way to understand the true spirit where one can easy know the nature and presence by knowing the food.

Angan, a People's Restaurant

"Angan" as the name suggests is a family restaurant, which is famous in the valley for its delicacy of mouth-watering Sweets, Samosa, Panipoori and Dosa. Perhaps it can be said as a gastronomical wonder of taste with its menus rolling down from different tastes of sweet to tangy to other tasteful items.

Currently it has four outlets situated in Tripureshwor, Putalisadak, New Road, Gyaneshwor where different vegetarian Indian and Chinese dishes are served with adequate service. Moreover adapting the modern trend the Angan also serves a wide variety of fast foods items like Pizza, burgers and sandwich to its arrivals.

Similarly, the menu opens with a variety of sweets, snacks and different food packages for Lunch and Dinner items focusing on the high taste. There are more than 50 sweets available in the menus where specifically Rasbari, Kaaju Barfi, Saan Papdi have embraced people in magnetizing them towards its abode. Apart from the sweets the Samosa, Chat, Dosa, Jalebi and Pani Poori are quiet in craze for the trendy foody people.

Similarly, it caters a wide range of customer from teenagers to adult, with its list of menus to dissolve their fantasy in the sweet sugary candies to tangy items and spicy Dosa. To be precise, Angan is a place of preference where people come to satisfy their needs of taste.

The Angan is currently running under the company name of Pashupati Foods as a franchise outlet of international chain of restaurants, Bikanervala of India. According to S.M Agrawal, In-charge of Angan, "We at Angan focus in quality and preference of customer. We use technical specification for the variety of food product to give it authentic taste to our clients."

Today the world is changing and with the changing world, people's tastes and preferences are also changing highlighting a newer concept of health conciseness. We at Angan focus on innovative products according to customer's needs and wants. Recently we had launched a sugar free Peda and Angeer Chikki which is really
grasping our customers attention. " 100% customer satisfaction is our main motto and we try to focus on that by every means" said Agrawal.

We use high quality raw material for our products, we don’t compromise with quality and maintain a high hygiene level. Sometimes people do complain about the high prices but after observing the hygiene and quality standards they generally fall back, stated Agrawal.

Though, there are different restaurant available in the market but Angan proves to be one of the gastronomical wonder with its varieties of food items creating a new scope and taste for the foody people.

Nepali Orthodox Tea

“Tea has always been an expression of freshness” as whether it’s an early morning reason to get-up or a hot drink in hard winter, we generally grab our cups to satisfy our longing by having a cup of tea.
To be precise tea has adapted the different culture and creed people, evolving itself as a brawny part of the different culture where people have developed it as an addiction in the most profound way.

With over 600 kinds of tea in the world, the history and tradition of tea culture has established itself as a stronge part of different cultures all over the world. Tea drinking dates back 3000 years and while we enjoy
the tradition and ceremony, we also want to sometimes enjoy tea in a contemporary way that compliments modern life. Our tea culture has been hugely affected by the influences from China, though not so rich but it does have some definite signs. Just like them it is an integral part of our daily lives where we can see its presence and strength in every corner and every minute where we all shout around for “chiya”. The culture itself is not so rich but it does have some defined values of its practice. We search its presence every now and then when we feel of being bored. Looking back at history, it is believed that the first tea plants in Nepal were grown gifted by the Chinese Emperor to the then Prime Minister of Nepal, Jung Bahadur Rana, where under his gardens it flourished. Similarly, Nepalese tea industry owes its roots to the colonization of India, by the world’s first multinational company, the “East India Company”, under the British Empire.
Around 1863, within a time span of 10 years after the first tea plantation was set up in Darjeeling, hybrids of tea bushes were brought, and the Nepal’s first tea plantation, Ilam Tea Estate was set up in Ilam district, at an altitude of 4,500-5,000 feet above the sea level. Visioning better future prospects of the tea industry in Nepal, two years later a second tea plantation, Soktim Tea Estate was set up in the Jhapa district.

Scientifically, the tea plant belongs to Camellia Sinensis group of species, which generally grows in cold or higher altitude. Categorically teas are divided into two-category CTC which is massively grown in terai region and Orthrodox in hilly region. In-fact, the High altitude teas have more flavors and aroma than low altitude teas that is the reason why, the green teas grown in high altitude are regard as the best.

Today, Nepal's orthodox tea is getting famous in the world for its medicinal and youth-ness properties. It is devoured by thousands of people in a pleasing way of satisfying their thirst in just the name of having a break.
Perhaps, it contains antioxidants, which helps to fight our body against disease and also helps to prolong aging to an extent. Further researches have confirmed its properties to be effective against disease like cancer.

Different category of teas are found from a specific garden, grade and flush like Silvery Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe (STGFOP), Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pokoe (TGFOP), Golden Flowery Orange Pokoe (GFOP), Flowery Orange Broken (FOB), Broken Orange Pokoe (BOP), First and Second
flush etc where teas grown using minimum pesticide are high in demand in the international market. Mostly the CTC teas are grown in terai region while orthodox teas are grown in hilly region.

In eastern Nepal, the organic gardens are situated in 3000ft to 7,325ft above sea level giving the Nepal orthodox tea, a definite taste and aroma. Currently in major areas like Dhankuta, Illam, Jhapa, Therathum, Panchthar etc where the trend of orthodox tea is taking pace with high earning. More over, teas
are produce from biological and ecological balanced soil so it has adapted the different entrepreneur in creating a lure for the industry.

Generally, the tea plantation in Nepal begins in March following the raining season with the opening of winter. The tea then plucked has a light golden color with a slight aroma. The second flush is plucked during May and June. By mid June the Monsoon season reaches the eastern part and continues till the end of September. The tea produced during this period contains moisture and considered of standard quality. Again in October another plucking session is done which is specifically know as “Autumnal” varying its color from pale lemon to amber with the season. It features an extra ordinary Muscat flavor, rich aroma and a lingering aftertaste. Perhaps orthodox tea is accepted around the world for it seasonal and unique taste.

The tea manufacturing process includes three main stages Plantation, Plucking and Pruning and Processing.
Plantation includes a rigorous procedure of selecting a high quality tea breed and facilitating it with natural and available fertilizers. Plucking and pruning refers to another important stage where fresh leaves are plucked once every 7 days giving another batch of fresh tea leaves to grow on it. Similarly processing is the most important stage where the leaves plucked from the plant are then withered which gradually evaporates moisture from the leaf over the hours then the leaves are removed from the trough and loaded into a rolling machine. After the rolling process the leaves are then set for fermentation, on attaining the level of fermentation that transforms the green leaves into black tea and when the desired level of fermentation is acquired, then the tea is dried or exposed to hot air to regulate the aroma and taste. Likewise, it goes to a chamber of a modern tea factory where the temperature is maintained in between from 93-121C. It is the most intensive operation in the entire tea processing. After which the tea is then sealed and packed according to desired ways.

Nevertheless, in today's context tea is growing as a habituation in subsidizing it as a culture where people are having one more cup in the name of break or recess.

Tongba-The flavor of Nepal

Popular among the locals as the Himalayan beer the Tongba is a millet bases alcoholic beverage that makes you feel warm and tipsy. Easily available in any of the petite street corner drinking Tongba is not considered as getting drunk in fact in reality it is taken as a normal drink for any cold day. Tongba is very popular among the eastern Nepal, Darjeeling and Sikkim region of India. Just like the Japanese tradition of drinking SAKE or Guinness to the Irish or whisky to the Scots: it's something to celebrate and revel in, and to stumble and sing under its influence and has its own tradition among the Limbu people. The Limbu tribes and clans belong to the Kirati nation. They are indigenous to the hill and mountainous regions of east Nepal between the Arun and Mechi rivers to as far as Southern Tibet, Bhutan and Sikkim. Tongba is used in different aspect of their culture like weddings, mourning, gift exchanges, and settlement of conflicts where they practice it with great efficacy and pride.

Tongba actually is the vessel which holds the fermented alcoholic beverage known as Jaand that is served in a cylindrical wooden pot with polished brass banding. The vessel is filled with fermented millet seeds where hot water is poured in and the fermented millet dissolves and produces jaand. Before that the millet is cooked and fermented. The cooked millet is cooled and mixed with murcha (bacteria and yeast). Then the mass is collected and placed in a woven bamboo basket lined with green leaves or plastic, covered with thick fold of cloth and allowed to remain in a warm place for 1–2 days depending upon the temperature. The sweet mass is then packed tightly into an earthenware pot or plastic jars and the opening is usually sealed off to prevent air from entering.

After 7–15 days depending upon the temperature, the fermentation is complete and the mass is converted to jaand. The time jaand is left to remain undisturbed in the pot after completion of fermentation leads to maturing of the jaand, during which the flavors and taste intensifies yet become more mellowed. Traditionally it is stored for about six months.

The fermented millet is put in a container and consumed in a unique way. Traditionally boiled water is poured in it to the brim. It is then left undisturbed for five minutes. Once the five minutes has passed it is ready to drink; more hot water is added as the tongba becomes dry, and the process is repeated until the alcohol is exhausted. Drinkers suck the alcoholic mixture through a bamboo straw with tiny filters to keep the seeds out, and it's a never-ending affair. You sit around the fire with a thermos flask topping up the pot for hours, and snack on spiced cucumber and mutton pieces known as sukuti. The locals will assure you that tongba never leads to hangovers but it certainly makes sleep come more quickly. Tongba's heartwarming kick is especially welcome during the winter, which incidentally is the best time for visiting the country.

Tongba leaves you with a warm and pleasant feeling. Maybe it was the altitude? And Since it’s meant to be sipped then refilled and sipped again each drink tends to last, making Tongba a very nice evening drink and recommended at least to try something very genuinely of Nepal’s own tradition.

Tehzeeb 50 cent Bar and Grill- a multi cuisine restaurant

Tehzeeb 50 cent Bar and Grill is a multi cuisine restaurant that features retro style setting with an explosion of taste bud. Located in the center city area of Lal Durbar it caters its arrival with variable taste of Indian, Chinese, continental and Nepali taste. The basic highlight of the restaurant is its live Traditional Nepali show that attracts most of its clients where it has established itself as a new type of restaurants in the market.
According to the management, “ Tehzeeb as the name suggests is one of the best in terms of standard quality. We focus more toward quality and standard as they are our key point; apart from that most of our clients are foreigners, so we always have to be in top notch.  With spacious parking and established qualified staff we promise you the best of service and standard.”

The restaurant is run by qualified people who have been in the industry from past 15 years

Two Star: ☆☆

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Secrets of FOOD all over the world

Continental food  refers to the cooking style that is used in the  European Continent, which highlights majorly the use of  olive oil, garlic and other intense herbs and flavors.

Similarly, the French, Italian and Spanish parts of Europe, all do 'continental' dishes which center on olive oil, wine, garlic and herbs like Rosemary etc..  Classing food by style is really about its main flavors which invariably found in the dish. . 

Chinese food generally focuses on 3 flavors, Garlic, Spring onion and Ginger as its base in nearly all dishes.

Indian Food uses Garlic, Cumin and Coriander are the base flavors found in almost all Indian dishes. 

Thai Food uses Lemon Grass, Garlic, Ginger, Chilli + fraigrant spice 

Nepali food rich with tradition + carbohydrates and love

Technical Source: Yubraj Basnet  

food to health/ happiness or food to gain weight

Food is what we all eat and food is something that makes our day, but food is something that can also make you crazy and lethargic. The proportion of spices, herbs and mineral when well balanced can give you a smile to make your day where as the same proportion when goes wrong can result in a chemical imbalance of causing  diarrhea or indigestion.

Food is not just a source of energy its a way or tradition that spells the way of living. Food  is humanity that gives us all a way to see the beauty of world where we all share the love and affection. May be that is the reason why food has no boundaries and no race it is just appetizing and full of smiles...............  

Apart from that the use of MSG specially to enhance the taste is a complete wrong a way  to see food. Food is never about taste, its about satisfaction and dedication which needs to be understood. The commercial use of the MSG not only destroys the real taste of food but it also makes your taste buds dull.

If you eat good and health food you can be productive and perform in every field of life but if you eat unhealthy food then you will be unproductive and lethargic, so be careful about what you eat.

To summarize short food is all about colors, taste, smell and every other small things that makes you the satisfaction of being full