Thursday 1 October 2009

Indo-Thai Fusion Rice……and the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

clip_image002[4]Friends you might wonder what does my title mean. But as you  read down the post , will understand what I meant. Be patient it’s gonna be a long post…
As you all know I was to travel to Bangalore for a family function. I was completely undecided till the last day whether I could travel for 30hrs with my recuperating child and also because of my prolonged five month old fever, which I am still fighting. S suggested that we both fly and the other two come by train. I did not want to travel without them, so reluctantly I decided to go by train.
I did not sleep the whole night as I had not packed for either of us, so whole day I was packing and clearing up things, finishing my classes, locking the doors etc and was dead tired by the evening of the day of travel.
Since we were to travel by Rajdhani , I did not cook for the 3 of us but for my younger one I had to cook. I decided to carry some low oiled parathas in which I could spread glucose and give him and some rice.
I had asked my help to slice some onions and chop a few french beans, mushrooms and tomatoes  so that I could add the veggies to the rice. But when I decided to start cooking I was feeling sad thinking that we all will eat good food  in the train and  he will be tempted to eat that. In that spur of moment I decided to make a nice aromatic rice for him. The rice turned out really GOOD, the recipe of which I will share at the end.
Our train was to start from the station at 8.50 PM. The normal time taken to reach the station is about 1 hour and 15 mins. We started around 6.15 PM i.e about two and a half hours before the train started. We started facing small traffic jams in the travel and we realised that the taxi driver is a slow guy, he would keep moving behind a slow moving car. Initially S just reminded him that he needs to be driving a little fast. We reached the express highway and to our surprise this driver drove at a speed of 60 there also, so again S  reminded him gently that we have a train to board. We all kept looking at our watch to confirm that we had time. It was the 8th day of the Navratra  so the traffic in the city was a little high than normal. We asked him to take inner roads and avoid the busy roads but he insisted that the road he is taking will have less traffic and got us stuck in huge traffic jams. We were now only looking at the watch as we were left with only 45 mins in hand, and the initial  gentle reminders had turned into strict & sometimes rather loud instructions, but the driver oblivious of our anxiety persisted with his way of driving and we got badly stuck a kilometer away from the station. The hands of the clock kept moving and heart beats thumped rapidly. We could see the time passing by and the chances of missing the train increasing every minute. We started praying and hoping that the train gets delayed due to some reason but the traffic kept creeping slowly. Around 8.50 pm when we were a km away from the station the traffic cleared and we reached the station by 9. I left everyone in the taxi and ran towards the platform to check if the train was still there (pull the chain & stop the train till we reach with the luggage was the instruction I had from S) ….by the time I reached the platform by 9.09 pm the train had left just nine minutes before. This was the BAD part.
We cancelled our tickets and the same driver dropped us back home following the inner lanes in just 45 mins!!! At home we tried filling our stomach with  the rice and the parathas., then booked all of us for an early morning flight. We thought we will ‘nicely surprise’ every one by reaching early, little did we know of the surprises stored for us.
We reached the airport on time and checked in. The conveyor belt which carries the luggage got spoilt and the luggage had to be manually loaded, so the flight got delayed by 45 mins. We took off at 7 am, at 7.30 the pilot announced that due to technical problems  we have to return back, so we landed back. The next 3 hours were all anxiety as 3 more IA flights got cancelled. There was chaos at the airport finally at 11 we boarded  and took off again. Around 1’o clock the pilot announced again that due to some problem in the runway at Bangalore airport we are landing in Chennai. We just laughed at ourselves…..By this time we were very hungry, they gave us a very small helping of rice with a very small helping of curry. The aircraft stayed their at the Chennai airport for next 2 hours. We were left with nostalgia as we were on that land after an year.
The airport staff kept giving a new excuse every minute, but people had called Bangalore airport and we came to know that IA pilots were on strike. With great difficulty we started from Chennai at 4.00 pm and landed in Bangalore at 4.45 pm. I said teasing S that do we have to carry our baggage in our hands now from the aircraft…somewhere I had a feeling the excitement is not over yet, and I was true…our one baggage was diverted to Chennai which to our relief had reached before us. This was the UGLY part  where we got tortured by IA people and  which continued in our return journey too where at the last minute our flight got cancelled. But to our relief they put us into another flight and we reached home safely.clap
The other  GOOD things were that we made it to the  next days headlines and Daddy’s 80th Birthday celebration went off well. Smile

2 small glasses rice
2 onions sliced
1 large tomato
6-7 mushrooms cut into four
10-12 French beans chopped
6-7 pieces of dry lemon grass
3-4 lemon leaves
3 garlic pods finely chopped
3-4 green cardamoms
1 tsp red chili pwd
oil to cook
salt to taste
Soak the rice for 15 mins in water. Decant the water.
Heat oil and add green cardamoms followed by onions. Add garlic and lemon grass. Now add the beans, mushrooms and tomatoes. Mix in salt and red chili pwd.
Add the rice and saute it for 2-3 mins gently. Add in the decanted water and adjust the water so that it’s volume is almost double the volume of rice. Throw in the lemon leaves.
Bring the water to a boil and then simmer the flame. Once the rice is almost done, cover it with the lid. Remove from fire and let it cook with the steam.
The rice has a mild aroma of cardamom and lemon grass which leaves the rice nicely fragrant.
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Sailaja Damodaran said...

very colourful....nice click

Palidor said...

That looks lovely! Unfortunately, it sounds like your trip was not so lovely! Glad you made it safely.

ST said...

Looks delicious and tempting dear:)

Desisoccermom said...

OMG, I can't imagine what you and your family must have gone through. Missing trains, flight delays and missed luggage. That is like a horror story of travel. I hope you had a better journey back home.

Gita Jaishankar said...

Lovely dish must have a good laugh over this after you reached your destination :)

Dips said...

So sorry for your experience...Travel is getting uglier nd uglier...everywhere...glad you maintained your calm and patience(hopefully)..and all's well that ends well..nahi ?

Raks said...

Recipe sounds good :)

Jeyashris Kitchen said...

Ooops,pari really it is a very bad and ugly experience. And absolutely started from the taxi driver.
The rice looks nice and colourful

SE said...

Nice dish! and sorry for all the hassle you had to go through! By the way you mentioned about the 5 month prolonged fever, did you be any chance check your thyroid levels/TSH levels, if not, do so. Because continuous mild fever can be a symptom of hypothyroid(need not worry about the condition easy to treat)

Avisha said...

A nightmare...But glad you were able to make it to the birthday celebration. Its all about happy ending.Now for the recipe - Like it.

lata raja said...

Just another eventful day! You will remember all the good, bad and ugly:(
Nice rice there even though you ate it back @ home!

Priya Suresh said...

Travelling is getting bad everywhere, its happened to me too few months back..glad you were able to participate finally to the birthday celebration..This fusion rice looks scrumptious and delicious Pari.

Unknown said...

ohh at last you reached safely!!! ... it looks like you are traveling from us to India haa not chanai to bangalore oh realy a bad experience aahhh all because of that taxi driver... any way happy ending naa good. recipe sounds awesome.

Katy ~ said...

I was anxiety-stricken just reading of all the delays and frustrations in your trip. I would have been speechless with fury at the taxi driver!!

I love rice. This looks delicious! Full of flavor and I like all the added goodness in this. Beautiful and delicious post!

Congratulations to your dad on his 80th birthday. So glad you had a safe trip.

SE said...

Hey Pari! Thanks for visiting my blog and for the comments too!. Yes i do speak marathi

Padma said...

Good at least u could make it to the function with all these hassles and change in travel... but I can imagine how would u have felt by missing the train just by 9 mts... and fusion rice looks delicious...

Kanchan said...

Nice write up !!
Even I anxious as to what happened @ end :D

Anonymous said...

oh my! wat an uneventful trip! sometimes, these taxi drivers dont want to listen at all..anywys, glad that ur back home safe n sound. i love the way u incorporated the vggies into this rice.

Trish said...

Oh my...what an 'adventure'...sigh! Glad you made it in the end.....gosh...there is always a reason for everything so who knows.....perhaps it was meant to be. Sometimes we don't know the reason til much later in life. Perhaps you were able to spend some quality time with family in a way you might not have otherwise.

Love your rice...yum! Sounds like, with the veggies, that it would be a perfect little meal on its own.

Unknown said...

Lovely rice, very uneventful trip, glad your back home.

Shri said...

The rice looks delicious and I have had several such torturous international flights!Anyway, belated wishes to your dad,Pari!

s said...

ye hai India meri jaan..what an ordeal...

My Little Space said...

OMG, you had such an aweful days! Luckily, you guys still be able join in the celebration...he he! Some journey that you'll never forget...ha ha! And the rice is really delicious. Thanks for sharing.

Ushnish Ghosh said...

Dear pari
Picked up your blog reference and visiting 1st time.
Very nice introduction and the write up...GOOD, BAD UGLY..the food should be equally good, Will try soon.


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