Tips 'n' Tricks

Travel Checklist – Print, Pin, Plan

Travel Tips, from the corner table #fromthecornertable

My idea of packing has always been to create a huge pile of ‘things to carry’ in one corner of my bed. That pile invariably covers the whole bed leaving me a sliver of space to sleep in. And then, say half a day before I am to leave, I will start frantically dumping things into the bag, much to the exasperation of Maa who loves her things organised.

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Tongue-Tickling Chatpata Chicken

With a cooking time of just 20 minutes and the flexibility of loading with as many vegetables as you want and seasoned with just two ingredients – turmeric and chaat masala, this is a winner. “I don’t remember where I learned this from but what I do know is that I love it and so do the kids. Makes that a win-win situation!” she says.

Travel

Tales from Munnar #2

On the second day of our stay in Munnar, after we checked out of a the lovely Clouds Land Home Stay, we drove up the winding roads to the Lockhart Tea Estate to understand how tea is processed.

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‘Chilli’-ng with the Potatoes

Much to my surprise, and the delight of vegetarian friends, I found out chilli chicken has a cousin, the chilli potato. Manu, the owner of our accommodation in Munnar, served his version of the chilli potato on a cool summer evening, paired with a glass of wine. My taste buds did the jiggy-whiggy as I savoured the crispy piece of potato, coated with the sauces, the flavours of garlic and ginger taking me to taste heaven.

Travel

Tales from Munnar #1

when summer came in this year, Kerala topped the list of ‘places to travel’ with the quaint Munnar giving a new meaning to ‘rolling hills’ and ‘winding roads’.

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Lau Chingri, a Mishmash of Bottle Gourd and Prawns

When there are shrimps or prawns in the house, we are in for a treat because it’s time for lau chingri, a recipe wherein finely chopped bottle gourd is cooked with the seafood and served as a side dish.

Travel

Touching the Tip and How!

Kanyakumari is a postage-stamp sized town in comparison to other towns that you may have travelled to. You can easily cover the touristy and non-touristy bits of the city in a day.  
Hot humid air that carries the smell of sea and scorching sun are two characteristics I will always associate with the town. Those were the two things that shook me when I hopped off the train at Kanyakumari station.

Tips 'n' Tricks

Churning out Homemade Chhana/Paneer

Ladies and gentlemen, I learned to make chhana. Chhana is a kind of cheese curd made from milk by adding food acid. Similar to cottage cheese, chhana is the base of several Indian and especially Bengali sweets.

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Payesh & Goodwill to Usher in the New Year

It’s that time of the year! I’ve been waiting for Poila Boishakh, the first day of the Bengali calendar, for some time now. Celebrations aside, the best part of this day is the aroma of traditional food that wafts out of the kitchen. This year, Poila Boishakh is on Sunday, April 15.

Talk

Tea Time Tête-à-tête

This is the tale of the princess who turned her passion and love for the little packet into a lucrative business.
This is the tale of Snigdha Manchanda, corporate slave-turned-tea sommelier and teapreneur, who is among the handful of people working to guide a nation of chai lovers towards understanding their teas better.

Tips 'n' Tricks

Some How-What-Why for Your Athens Trip

Its summer and everyone is planning their summer holiday! And I have been peppered with queries about Athens.
There is not much you cannot do in Athens primarily because tourism being among the main industries, there is a lot of freedom you will enjoy provided you are careful.

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A Royal ‘Maangsho Jhol’ (Bengali Style Mutton Curry)

Maangsho Jhol (Bengali Mutton Curry), from the corner table, #fromthecornertable

A Bengali can regale you with tales of incidents and heated discussions that have occurred as the family tucked into a Sunday lunch, seated around the steaming pot of maangsho jhol and white rice. And every Bengali is emotionally connected to this curry.

Tips 'n' Tricks

‘Trust Your Gut!’ Tips from a Solo Female Traveller

‘Trust your gut!’ Tips from a solo female traveller, from the corner table, #fromthecornertable

I strongly feel vulnerability is not specific to gender, age or region. A lone individual in a foreign country may be considered easy prey and rather than allow the fear of “What if!” inhibit our movement and the joy of travel, a few conscious measures could make the trip a memorable experience in the good way.

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Sweating over Dum Aloo & Begun Bhaaja (Bengali Potato Curry & Fried Brinjal)

Bengali Dum Aloo & Begun Bhaaja (Bengali potato curry & fried brinjal), from the corner table, #fromthecornertable

I’ve even learned this mini meal from Maa to share with you. Cook your friends this amazing mini meal of Bengali dum aloo (Bengali potato curry) and begun bhaaja (fried aubergine/brinjal) to be served with luchi, roti or even rice. Easy to make, these are Bengali favourites and always a hit.

Tips 'n' Tricks

How to Travel Solo: Tips from an Expert

How to travel solo, from the corner table, #fromthecornertable

Can I go for another vacation please? I know, I know. You’ll say, “Girl, you just got back from a 10-day trip and you want to go off again?” But travelling is my tonic.