• Guymag - breakfast halva - azerbaijan - whole wheat - butter
    Tuck-In

    Guymag | Wheat & Butter Halva

    Do you know what one of the best parts about winter is? It’s that special fragrance that comes from generous amounts of ghee or butter. It’s the heady aroma of paratha being roasted in ghee, the sizzle of the spices when they touch the hot makkhan (homemade butter), the hiss as a rainbow of vegetables slide into the butter for a winter-special stir fry. A mention of halva that has been painstakingly slow cooked for that perfect balance of flavours is a must. After all, winters are synonymous with halva! Gaajar ka halva, moong dal ka halva, badam halva, doodhi halva, matar halva…  (types of Indian puddings made of carrots, green mung beans, almond, bottle gourd, green peas) Amid this list of lavish…

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    Travel

    The Magnet Stories #Azerbaijan

    A few years ago, the trend of refrigerator magnets trickled into our home when a ‘Statue of Liberty’ magnet found space on the fridge surface. Over the years, several magnets from India and abroad have jostled for space on the grey surface. From the front of the fridge, magnets made their way to the visible side and then gradually on the steel wardrobes in our rooms. I’d always wondered about the why of gifting someone a fridge accessory – answers ranged from “it’s the cheapest gift” to “its accessible” or “it shows they thought about us”, depending on the individual. But somewhere it played at the back of my mind…

  • rose cinnamon halva, ter khalvasy, halva, dessert, sweets, wheat flour, Diwali, fromthecornertable, from the corner table, traveltuckintalk
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    Ter Khalvasy | Rose-flavoured Wheat & Butter Halva

    Whew…  It’s still five days to Diwali but in our house on the fifth floor of an apartment, we are already feeling the effects. Doors and windows have to be kept closed after 8 pm to keep out pollution created by the insane amount of firecracker bursting. Wonder what will happen by the time Diwali comes in on Wednesday? Diwali celebrations at the Bhaumick household have taken a comparatively sedate turn in the past few years. The firecracker buying-bursting process has taken a backseat to spending time with family, friends and food. But much more exciting and fun than this hustle-bustle of meet-greet-eat, is the prepping process. The atmosphere is filled with…

  • Travel

    Your Guide to Azerbaijan

    On an average day, rolling out of bed seems to be the hardest thing to be done. But occasionally, I wake up ready to take on the world, my heart pounding with the excitement of having achieved something. Even if it is something minor. Like perhaps having convinced you to plan a trip to one of the beautiful places I’ve written about. And wishfully thinking that you are planning that trip to Azerbaijan and will be booking your tickets soon. And it is my duty then to equip you with some tips to make travel smoother and safer. Travel & documents Applying for a visa to the Republic of Azerbaijan…

  • Travel

    A Painting called Shaki

    If Baku is the potpourri of the old and new and Gabala is that beauty spot hidden in the mountains of Azerbaijan, Shaki is an old painting come alive. Cobbled streets, old buildings with exposed bricks, quaint coffee shops and tiny chai khanas, Shaki has held on to the old world charm that pulsed through Azerbaijan. The final destination of our two-day tour into the interiors of the land of flames – or should I say heights – of Azerbaijan, Shaki has a history of settlements almost 2,700 years old. Historians and the guide at the local museum say the first mention of this town has been found in literature…

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    Azeri KyuKyu | Herb-ed Omelette

    There is something magical in the way eggs, whisked thoroughly, seasoned with a pinch of salt and cooked in a pat of butter or oil, can produce something as deceptively simple like an omelette. And I speak of the basic omelette. Type in the word ‘omelette’ in the search engine of your choice and it will throw up variants enough to boggle the mind. Makes you marvel at the versatility of this dish. Why? Leave alone the fancy versions, look around. Every household and each individual standing at the stove, cooking an omelette, has their particular way of making it. I’ve been missing my regular egg intake for the last…

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    Travel

    Gabala, a Beauty Spot on the Hills

    For most tourists, Gabala or Qabala is a preferred winter destination considering the plethora of winter sports that can be enjoyed on the slopes of the Greater Caucasus mountain range. In fact, Mount Bazarduzu, the highest peak in the Republic of Azerbaijan is located in this region. But summer in Gabala isn’t too bad, I say! This tiny city was the first stop on our two-day ‘explore the country’ endeavour. We decided to spend a night at Gabala before heading to Shaki and then returning to Baku. Gabala is a roughly 3-hour drive from Baku but when you travelling through a picturesque landscape with a trio of women who kicked off the…

  • Travel

    Rock Etchings & Mud Volcanoes of Gobustan

    If you thought Baku is the beginning and end of Azerbaijan, and that I was done talking about my weeklong trip, you were soooooo wrong! Seven days is long enough time to tuck several experiences under your belt. And if those days are spent in a country like Azerbaijan, it is sufficient time to explore more than just the capital city. The first two days I spent in Baku made me realise that the city is the perfect canvas to showcase the wealth of a growing economy. With its sky-touching towers, modern buildings that share boundaries with structures from bygone eras, the city has a rather glitzy vibe. The vibe…

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    A Newbie’s Guide to Azeri Cuisine #Chapter2

    Did you know?# The process of making Azeri specialities dolma and flatbreads (lavash, katyrma, jupka, yufka) are inscribed in UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.# Azerbaijan cuisine boasts of more than 30 types of soups.# Black caviar from the Caspian Sea is among the most sought after in the world. Azerbaijan boasts of human settlements dating back to the Stone Age, a religious history that shows a shift from Zoroastrianism to Christianity and then Islam and an enviable cultural influence initiated by travellers who passed through the Silk Route. The violent political history combined with the above, have given Azerbaijan a unique identity.This uniqueness is reflected…

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    A Newbie’s Guide to Azeri Cuisine #Chapter1

    There is a lot of food culture that goes on in the home and in the community in non-traditional ways. Food is a lot more than restaurants. – Eddie Huang (American chef, food personality) For me, home is where food becomes an expression of love, a comforting hug, a celebration, a new tradition, an experience, making it an extension of traditions that have been reshaped. So imagine my delight when I realised that a large number of my meals in Azerbaijan were to be homemade or a mix of homemade/store-bought, each meal planned with the intent of sharing more about the culture and traditions of a country and a family.…