Thursday, November 19, 2009

wheat flour over the years...

My mother's grandmother used to get up every morning at 4 (in Almora thats quite something) and grind the wheat for making food that day. The wheat flour used to be absolutely fresh and apparently also very tasty and healthy.

By the time ma was old enough to help her dadi, there were neighborhood chakkis for making atta - people still used to give their own flour and get the atta made right in front of them. Soon rush increased and people would just drop their dabbas with wheat grains and collect the atta later on. This is was still not convenient enough, so obviously the next was packaged atta sold in almost all kiran stores now.

However, the practice of getting your own grains has also not died out completely. Many families don't prefer packaged atta, fearing it might be old and maybe even with additives to make it last much longer on the shelves. But, packaged atta is getting more and more popular. We can already see the next step in the process - packaged chapatis, though the trend is yet to catch on. The roti quality is rather inferior, and most of us still prefer to eat fresh rotis straight from their mother's/ wife's tawa!

Another interesting product for this is the 'ghar-ghanti' which has been around in many Gujarati homes for a while now. Useful when the atta consumption is fairly high, true for large joint families.

I wonder for how long we would be able to retain our current cooking practices, with technology we move ahead for sue, but often compromise on the most fundamental parameters i.e. taste. Often convenience wins over taste and that is quite a loss for our taste buds. Lets see how our future shapes up...

Monday, November 9, 2009

Political entertainment...

Its rather amazing how our elected politicians sometimes behave, but I guess its hardly surprising as even they are also humans, after all. Like everyone else they are also emotional, and are eligible for an emotional outburst or two.

With the above as background, its hardly surprising what happened in the Maharashtra assembly today. Emotional legislators on the two sides and some high-pitched drama - a perfect recipe for a Bollywood potboiler (however, its too real to be actually made into a movie). The issue seemed simple enough (and Mr. Azmi's act democratic enough); perhaps no one would've even noticed it (or maybe I am wrong here), if not for our very charged first time emotional MLAs from MNS. But language could be tricky issue to handle or even understand.

Or am I being presumptuous by assuming that it was pure emotion on display, perhaps it was a pre-planned move with a very clear objective. Its hardly unlikely, considering that its all within the highly murky political samunder. It generated a lot of noise and possibly even some entertainment, and would perhaps ensure some more votes and maybe more than 13 MNS representatives in the next state elections too. And tons of publicity...

So where do we go from here? I wonder how low do we fall (both us and the politicans) before we decide that now its nadir for us all and decide to do something about it.

But I am still inclined to give the benefit of doubt to all parties involved, possibly everyone is innocent and correct in their own places. But a feeling of disgust persists...

Saturday, November 7, 2009

As time goes by...

There is little original on my blog of late, and even this is also a borrowed one. A song which is very dear to me. I guess many of us can relate to these words, simple but intense.

You must remember this
A kiss is just a kiss, a sigh is just a sigh.
The fundamental things apply
As time goes by.

And when two lovers woo
They still say, "I love you."
On that you can rely
No matter what the future brings
As time goes by.

Moonlight and love songs
Never out of date.
Hearts full of passion
Jealousy and hate.
Woman needs man
And man must have his mate
That no one can deny.

It's still the same old story
A fight for love and glory
A case of do or die.
The world will always welcome lovers
As time goes by.

Oh yes, the world will always welcome lovers
As time goes by.

It was written by Herman Hupfeld in 1931 and was later used again in the movie, Casablanca in 1942. The version here is the one used in the movie.
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