Anandway: Blog

Roadmaps to joy!

Panchratna Ri Dal recipe from Maharana Arvind Singh Mewar

Maharana Arvind Singh Mewar’s ‘Five lentils’ recipe, takes me back to the days spent in Jodhpur and Jaipur as a house guest. That’s how I got to sample a lot of the Rajasthani fare, which I can roughly put down to oil, chilly and besan (gramflour). It was amazing to find these ingredients in so many of the delicious meals that were served piping hot.

The Panchratna daal here reminds me of the bajra khichri eaten for breakfast in Jodhpur. Bajra and moth daal simmered in milk over a wood fire all night and served with dollops of white butter for breakfast, with nothing more than salt for a flavouring! It melted in the mouth…

Now for the dal recipe shared by Maharana in The Times of India:

Panchratna ri daal, Five Lentils (Serves 4 )

30g Urad dal
30g Tur dal
30g Chana dal
30g Moong dal
30g Moath dal
2 Green chillies
2 Whole red chillies, broken into pieces
½ tsp Cumin
½ tsp Turmeric
½ tsp Garam masala
6 cloves
6-7 small Cardamoms
½ tsp Heeng (Asafoetida)
50g Ghee (clarified butter)
Salt to taste

Soak all the five lentils in water for four hours. Cook all the dals in an open vessel or a degchi. The dals acquire a special flavour when cooked in a degchi, quite different from when they are pressure cooked. This needs to be simmered for a long time. When the lentils are cooked, heat ¼ cup clarified butter in another degchi-vessel. Add cumin, asafoetida, cloves and cardamoms. When the cumin crackles, add a little water and red chilli. Now add the lentil mix and stir for two minutes. Let the lentils cook for another 10 minutes. Add garam masala, check the seasoning and serve hot with fresh coriander leaves and slit green chillies as garnish.

Say no to Genetically Modified Food

“Poison on the Platter”, is an eye-opening film, made by Mahesh Bhatt and Ajay Kanchan, illustrating how all of our lives are going to be (adversely) affected by genetically modified foods. It is no more a farmer’s issue alone, it’s a matter of the consumers’ right to food safety. You and I wouldn’t even be able to recognise a normal Brinjal from/over a GM one, if Bt Brinjal - a GM crop produced by the mighty agri-MNC Monsanto - is let through by our corrupt regulatory body. Let’s put up strong resistance, demanding a ban on GM food/crops for 5 years, until they are proven safe for human consumption by independent, long-term studies.

GM Food is a big issue today in the whole world… The world is shifting towards natural food…but here (in India) nobody cares about it as an issue.

~ Milind Soman

Say no to GM Food

India should only farm the organic way. They should not go to genetically modified food…

…Until and unless it is proved fool-proof that it has no harm for the public, don’t propagate it. Propagation of something which you are not sure of…which could create enormous damage to life on the planet is not acceptable by any means. It is not science, it is terrorism!

~ Sri Sri Ravishankar

Guava tree in bloom

 

Guava tree in bloom

Guava trees are the star attraction in our garden for monkeys, birds, squirrels and kids. The monsoon fruit is not as sweet as the winter fruit, nonetheless, those eying the fruit couldn't care less!

Phalsa tree in bloom

Phalsa or Grewia asiatica is a tropical fruit tree/shrub native to South Asia from India east to Cambodia.

I found a small patch of these shrubs in Malihabad - the mango-orchard belt on the outskirts of Lucknow (India). Women from the family that owned this phalsa orchard, took turns at guarding. A herd of goat or a stray buffalo can ruin the annual harvest. The flowers though delicate reach fruition under the hot April sun :-)

The purple-maroon, sweet-sour fruit tastes great with a dash of salt. Phalsa sherbet is also a great summer favourite.

Star fruit tree

The Star fruit tree! The Star fruit, Carambola or Amrak is very tasty in fruit salads. They make a beautiful decoration of the salad when you cut it into stars. Those stars are also very tasty and decorative in tea. They are sweet-sour but less sour than the lemon.

In Vrindavan’s Banke Bihari bazar, there is a street stall which sells not easily found sour fruit: in a salad or on their own: Star fruit, Tamarind, wild ber, to name a few.

Hatha Yoga Pradipika ch. 1. Asana

Hatha Yoga pradeepika is a Sanskrit text dated 15CE, written by Swatmarama to explain this system of health cum spiritual upliftment. It is to be used in tandem wih Raja Yoga, Patanjali Yoga Sutras for best results. Here is a English translation facilitated by various scholars.

Hatha Yoga Pradipika, Chapter 1

About Aasanas

Shiva, the father of Hatha Yoga1. Salutation to Adinatha (Siva) who expounded the knowledge of Hatha Yoga, which like a staircase leads the aspirant to the high pinnacled Raja Yoga.

2. Yogi Swatmarama, after saluting his Guru Srinatha explains Hatha Yoga for the attainment of Raja Yoga.

3. Owing to the darkness arising from the multiplicity of opinions people are unable to know the Raja Yoga. Compassionate Swatmarama composes the Hatha Yoga Pradipika like a torch to dispel it.

4. Matsyendra, Goraksa, etc., knew Hatha Vidya, and by their favor Yogi Swatmarama also learnt it from them.

5. The following Siddhas (masters) are said to have existed in former times: Sri Adinatha (Siva), Matsyendra, Natha, Sabar, Anand, Bhairava, Chaurangi, Mina Natha, Goraksanatha, Virupaksa, Bilesaya.More...

Sanskrit prayer before meals

Sanskrit praer before meals, ayurvedaThis Sanskrit prayer to be read before a meal, indicates that eating and digesting is a sacred act. The prayer means know Anna, the food to be Brahma (the creative force), the juices in the food, the elements worthy of digestion to be Vishnu (the force that sustains), and the act of digestion to be Shiva (the force that destroys non-essentials). If you know this while you have your meals, no ill-effects which may have otherwise emanated from the food will affect you. Know the act of eating and digestion to be sacred :-) Food in Banke Bihari ki gali

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