Wednesday, October 07, 2009

The Trip to Lucknow

It was quite a long trip--nearly a fortnight I stayed with my in-laws in Lucknow. As my parents also originally hail from the same City, it's always nice to catch up with cousins and relatives.

As the train pulled in at the grand Lucknow railway station, it was again a wave of nostalgic hitting me. Though it was early morning, the streets were already chock a bloc with crowd and almost all forms of transport ranging from the notorious Vikram three-wheelers to the Cycle-rickshaws and tongas.

Despite this cacophony Lucknow is a special city that is known for its monuments and a refined culture. We spent quite a lot of time on socialising and visiting historical places as well. The weather was far from good and the power cuts added to discomfort.

Still, we did enjoy our trip. Of course, there was Bismillah ceremony. Aleena repeated the Arabic sura with ease and elan. At the ancestral home in Kakori, we celebrated Eid with my parents-in-law. My husband made the best use of holidays.

He slept a lot, read and spent the rest of the time in seeing places. Now we are back to Bhopal, leaving the hot weather behind. I have realised that the best part of the year to visit Lucknow is from October till February. Rest of the year, it's humid and sweltering hot.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Teaching physics

I'm enjoying my latest job. After my marriage, the initial few years I hadn't taken up any job. My daughter has started going to the school and what a coincidence that I got a really good job.

I love teaching and I'm enjoying every moment of it. Good that I was as confident as I used to be. I knew I couldn't like any other job. Though I had sometime back taught a couple of students who came for tuitions. But I was wondering will I get tense or nervous. Nope. I was not.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Back to Books: I'm in University again

After a hiatus of over three years, I am back to the University to pursue my M Phil in Physics. I liked the University. 

It's green, verdant and the campus is spread over a large area. After doing my MSc from Osmania University and teaching there for five years, it's been a long gap that I am back to books.

The Department of Physics has a nice building. I like the atmosphere. I have to spent a year. Let's see what's in store for me here.

The Bhopal University is known as Barkatullah University after the name of the freedom fighter Barkatullah Bhopali who founded the Gadar Party and was Prime Minister of Government in India in Exile, that was formed in Kabul much before Independence.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Shifting our residence

We are shifting, once again. That's going to be the third house in three years in this City. In fact, I like it. I have become quite an expert in packing things.

Also, now I know the City well. First when I came to Bhopal, I lived on the lake side, in Koh-e-Fiza. It was quite a nice locality but was located on the other side of lake where the Old Bhopal exists.

For the last 1-1/2 years we were in New Bhopal, near Arera Colony. And now we are going near New Market, the centre of Bhopal.

[Photo: The Upper Lake divides Bhopal into New and Old City. The island in the midst of lake is visible.]

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Mixed Vegetable Pickle

This is the latest I tried, it has come out fairly well. Anybody can make, its very easy.


1/2 cup cauliflower, cut into very small pieces (about ¼-inch )
1 carrot grated or cut into very small pieces(about 1/4 inches)
few green peas,
1/2 raddish gain either grated or cut into very small pieces (about 1/4 inch)
5 green chilies, seeded and cut lengthwise
Juice of 2 lemon
3 tsps salt or to taste
3 tsps chili powder
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
6-7 tsps mustard seeds
2-3 tsp fenugreek seeds
1/2 cup oil


1. First mix all the veggies, add salt, chili powder, turmeric powder, lemon juice and keep aside.
2. Mix mustard and fenugreek seeds and make a fine powder. Add the powder to the mixed veggies immediately and allow it to stand for a day.
3. Add oil and mix well. Its ready to serve.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Five months

Almost five months. Yes that's a long period I kept away from my blog. I know there is no use maintaining a blog if you can't update it. But...

Lot of things happened in the meanwhile. I went to my parents place and stayed for quite sometime. Returned. Learnt a few more dishes to cook like Chicken Rashida and Kadhai Chicken, quite perfectly.

Plan to visit Lucknow sometime later this month.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Chicken Tikka

2 pounds boneless chicken breast (cubed)
1 large bulb garlic
1 piece (2 inch) ginger
1 teaspoon cumin (freshly ground)
1 teaspoon coriander (freshly ground)
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
1 1/2 cup yogurt
1/4 cup heavy cream
a few strands of saffron, toasted and melted in a Tbsp. of milk.
salt to taste
black pepper to taste (freshly ground)
bamboo skewers (soaked well or it will burn on the grill)
clarified butter (for basting)
pastry brush for brushing on the ghee (clarified butter)


Peel and clean garlic and ginger. Grind to a fine paste. Keep aside. get the other ingredients ready. In a large glass bowl, place the chicken and the ginger-garlic paste, cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, black pepper, yogurt, cream, saffron and salt. Mix until well coated.

Cover with plastic wrap and let it marinate in the refrigerator for 12 hours. An hour before your guests arrive, skewer the pieces of chicken, baste the chicken with ghee (clarified butter) and grill to perfection.

Complements to murgh ka tikka (chicken tikka) are naan (a flat bread that can be found in an asian store) and raita (relish made with cucumbers, onions, tomatoes, serrano peppers and yogurt) or salade (red onions, steamed beets, serrano peppers tossed in lime juice).

This recipe for Chicken Tikka serves/makes 6

Wednesday, July 04, 2007


The origin of this dish 'Khichda' is associated with this story. They say when Noah's arc after experiencing lot of flood and cyclone came to a halt everyone who were there in the arc were very hungry, and they had very little food. So they decided to put everything together and cook. And they put all kinds of dals(lentils), rice, wheat, mutton and vegetables together and cooked. Thats how it got its name 'Khichda' meaning mixture. Now what is cooked is modified according to our taste.


daliya 100gms
tuar dal 100gms
chana dal 100gms
moong dal 100 gms
masoor dal 100 gms
urad dal 100 gms
rice 100 gms

Boil all these things together in pressure cooker so that they become soft.

mutton 500 gm or 750 gms
onion 2 medium size
ginger garlic paste
salt to taste
red chili powder
turmeric powder
corriander powder
curd 2 Tbsp
lime 1
cloves 4-5
pepper 4-5
Cinnamon stick 3-4 (1 inch each)
cardamom 4-5
green corriander
mint leaves
lemon for garnishing


Take some oil in pressure cooker add cloves, pepper cinnamon stick, cordamom and allow it to crackle. Then add onion, cook till it turns pink. Add mutton and ginger garlic paste , salt, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, corriander powder, curd and lime and cook for few minutes. then add water and allow it to pressure cook till mutton becomes soft.
Then, to the boiled mixture of dals and daliya add salt red chilli powder, haldi powder and corriander powder also add garam masala powder, then add this cooked mutton and mix them well with a spoon. Also add water and cook till the mixture starts boiling.
For seasoning, Take a little oil in the pan and add chopped onion to it and fry till it becomes golden brown. Take out the khichda in a serving dish and season it with fried onion, garnish it with chopped green chillies, green corriander and mint leaves and lemon and serve hot.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007


I reached Bhopal around 7 in the morning. I was very hungry. This was the first time that I came here after marriage. My husband's friends who came to pick us up at the station, said the dish which is very commonly eaten here in bhopal for breakfast is 'POHA', that was the first time I tasted it. Its a very light dish at the same time very nutritious.

Subsequently, my husband asked me to make it at home. since I had never eaten it before so I just had no idea of how to make. So it was just trial and error method, each time I made it, the dish had a new taste. My poor husband had tough time eating it.

It took almost 2 years for me to learn to make good poha, and now I realise its very easy to make.


Poha 250 gms
onion finely chopped 1 medium size
green chilli 4-5
curry leaves
mustard seeds(rai )
fennel seeds(saunf)
salt to taste
turmeric powder 1/4 tsp
sugar 1/4 tsp
green coriander


Rinse poha well with water. Soak it in very little water and keep for 10 minutes.
Heat little oil in the pan add mustard seeds , fennel seeds and curry leaves . Then add green chilies finely chopped. and thne finely chopped onions. Let the stove be on simmer.
Add poha to it and salt, turmeric and sugar. Mix well on low flame.Garnish with green coriander and lime and serve hot

Chicken 65

This is quite a famous dish of Hyderabad. I simply love this dish. It is made with boneless chicken. It is usually taken as a starter . If you like to eat dry stuff then you can also have it in main course. Its very popular in our family,amongst all my relatives. Every one who visited Hyderabad from any part of India or from any foreign country we made them taste it, and yes, they liked it. Its just mouth watering dish. Please note down the recipe now.


Chicken (boneless) 1/2 kg cut into small pieces
Egg 1
ginger garlic paste
salt to taste
red chilli powder
corn flour 1 Tbsp
maida 1 Tbsp

marinate chicken with above masala .

Curry leaves
Green chillies 10 (slit along the length)
garlic 5-6 (finely chopped)
ginger 1 inch (finely chopped)
curd 1Tbsp
salt 1 pinch
red colour


Fry pieces of marinated chicken one by one. then take little oil in the pan and put curry leaves , green chillies ginger and garlic, leave for few seconds. Add curd to it and then stir. Add salt and red colour. Allow it to cook for another few seconds. Then add fried pieces of chicken to the mixture and mix well so that the mixture covers all the pieces of chicken. Allow it to cook for 5 minutes on simmer. Your Chicken Sixty Five is ready.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Recipe for Hyderabadi Biryaani

On the demand of my friends I am posting here the recipe for Hyderabadi biryani recipe. All thanks to my sister's mother-in-law. It was she who gave me this recipe and then subsequently I practiced making it at home, now i have mastered the art of making it.


Mutton 1 Kg
Basmati rice 1Kg
ginger garlic paste 2 tsp
salt to taste
red chilli powder to taste
turmeric powder 2 tsp
raw papaya paste 1Tbsp ( size of the papaya must be small)
curds 2 Tbsp
lime 1
onion 2 medium size ( fried)
garam masala( cardamom, cinnamon stick, cloves)
green chilly 5-6
green corriander and mint leaves.
a pinch of saffron (zafran)


Marinate mutton with the above masala and keep aside for at least 4-5 hours.
Boil rice with salt , cardomum and cloves till it is half cooked then strain the water and remove the half cooked rice in another pan. In the vessel, put oil or ghee in the base and spread mutton in the pan, then over the mutton put complete half cooked rice. Keep this vessel over pre heated tawa on full flame for 10 minutes and then on simmer for 35-40 minutes.

Mix the rice and mutton well before serving.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Confusion Over My Identity

My identity had always been a mystery for people whether it is with respect to my age, my caste, religion or it be my language. Infact , I think I look like a strange creature to people. They just stare at me wondering who I am.

The problem is, nothing in my personality suggests my exact identity. Starting from my name its very uncommon so it just leaves people thinking, then my way of dressing is also not the usual muslim kind, I dont wear any jewellery which is again a cause of concern in indian society my language also does not leave any clue because more than urdu, I am more comfortable in english. In each case I have many experiences to share right from my childhood till now.

In my school or college when my teachers called my name for attendance first it took some time for them to pronounce it, they they would always wonder what kind of name it is. And as I dont add my sir name it created more confusion. They would ask as to how to pronoounce it and what is the sir name and so on.

When I was in M.Sc my Head of the Department was really surprised to know my religion as with my name she could not make out anything and added to that I always spoke in english, which is not very common, either people talk in hindi or the local language there that is telugu, (that is students amongst themselves). She could not ask me directly but she asked my friend as to who I am. When my friend told her, her reaction was "oh!".

Then , last year sometime in July I was travelling by train to Hyderabad with my brother and aunt. In our coupa there was a family who hailed from Indore, they were elderly couple and they had a teenaged daughter. It was an overnight journey. My aunt started talking to that lady and ofcourse my brother was as usual talking to everyone but I was silent. I did not talk much. But that lady there was constantly noticing me. Then when we were about to reach Hyderabad she ultimately asked me my caste and she tried to justify herself by saying as I was not wearing any jewellery so she could not make out anything. She was also wondering if I am married or not as I had a adaughter with me but no jewellery showing any signs of marriage(like mangalsutra, toe rings...) so all this really created confusion.

Then its yesterday only the lady from whom I buy milk said that I was a sindhi. Infact many people think I am parsi, many think I am christian. Once in my college one of my colleague introduced me to her friend saying she goes to St, George's church. she thought I was christian.