Sunday, July 16, 2017

Chicken Biriyani (A) from Thangam Phillips "Modern Cookery" page 240

This is a classic cookery textbook! My copy has been used for over two decades and has food stains from placing it too close to the stove and is in tatters.
Recipes are authentic though some mistakes are there in individual recipes.
Someone needs to modernize this for USA audiences. Also volume 1 and 2 used to be sold as a set and for much less than the list price here. That is disappointing.

Here is a recipe which I adapted from her book.

Chicken Biriyani (A) from Thangam Phillips "Modern Cookery" page 240
adapted to America. feeds 10 people and takes 2 hours. Made two trays for Korean church today and some liked it. Sunday, July 16, 2017

one 5 lb tray of chicken thighs (Sam's Club) after trimming fat becomes around 4 lbs.
4 cups rice washed.
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 Tbsp + 1 tsp salt
3 1/2 + 3 1/2 cups water
1  1/2 hot green jalapenos or 4-5 green Indian chilli
(4 cardamom + 1 clove + 1 Tbsp broken cinnamon) = 5 gm.
1 lime
1 bunch coriander leaves chopped.
65 gm ginger root
65 gm garlic (1 large pod)
400 gm tomato (5 Roma or two large)
2 large red onions (500 gm).
1/4 stick butter + 3 Tbsp oil

1) trim fat from chicken. portion meat so it is distributed evenly. for instance, cut off meat from each thigh to make 3 portions
2) In a pot, bring 3 1/2 cups water mixed with salt and turmeric to boiling and then add chicken. close lid tightly until 5 min. remove from fire.
3) Meanwhile grind ginger and garlic. slice onions, chop coriander, quarter tomatoes.
In a large flat bottomed pan with lid, heat butter + oil and add whole spices. press cardamom to break pods. Add onion and sauté for 3-4 min until darkens.
Add ginger and garlic mixture and mix. After 2 min, add green chilli and coriander leaves and mix.
Add chicken (lift out from broth) and sauté until well fried. stir to avoid burning. After 5 min, add tomato.
4) While chicken is sautéing, add 3 1/2 cups water + lime juice to broth and bring to boil. Add rice and cook on low for 5 min.
5) remove rice from flame and mix in with chicken mixture. cover and cook for 10 min. fold in rice from top level so uncooked grains are cooked.

Friday, October 21, 2016

movie: Papa Hemingway in Cuba

I liked the supposed line from Hemingway - 'consider carefully the weight of your decisions, consider every consequence.'

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Sadist nation?

It is sad and shocking that America has rewarded American Sniper with record box office revenues of $100 million on opening weekend. Its sadistic scenes mentioned here, seems to have been an attraction rather than a deterrent.
But this has been a theme with top draw directors like Clint Eastwood and also Ridley Scott who show unspeakable brutality under the guise of 'realism' and reap a bonanza. It appears that violence has replaced sex as the key to a top seller.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

What happened to MH-370, the Malaysian airlines plane?

As I write this, the search continues...
With hundreds of satellites from various countries in orbit around the earth, I wonder why the satellite images in the area in that time slot as it flew on its rogue trail cannot be scanned using recognition algorithms and images of the plane extracted.
Here is my guess. It was a murder-suicide. One of the pilots killed the other, locked the cockpit door, disabled the transponder, set the plane on auto-pilot after directing it towards the Indian Ocean.
When it ran out of fuel, it crashed into the sea.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Why were the Boston Marathon bombers' families silent?

I read a comment in a newsgroup that bears repeating - It is worrying why the bombers' families never told police who they were when the videos were first released. Did they not know? Perhaps the MIT police officer's life could have been saved.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Why were the police so late to the scene?

Despite the large number of mass shootings in recent years, never once has the police been on time to engage the gunman - not in Aurora, Columbine, Virginia Tech, and not Newtown.
One remembers TV images of police hiding behind their cars at Columbine, even while the shooting was happening inside.
In Newtown, the police department at 3 Main Street is just 2 miles from Sandy Hook Elementary school. Certainly there would have been patrol cars close by the school - why didn't they react sooner?
There needs to be an investigation as to the true timeline of events and whether there is a reluctance to go into a dangerous zone.

According to the BBC (, the timeline reported by police is:
But at about 09:30, Lanza forced his way into the school, police now say, contrary to earlier reports that he had been let in.
Newtown police were notified of shooting at the school over their radios at 09:36.
"Caller is indicating she thinks someone's shooting in the building," a police dispatcher said.
"The shooting appears to have stopped," the police dispatcher radioed at 09:38, according to the New York Post. "There is silence at this time. The school is in lockdown."
Did someone really take 6 long minutes to dial 911? And when did the police arrive?

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Romney missed on Benghazi

Watching tonight's second presidential debate, Obama skirted the question on why security wasn't beefed up - instead, he turned it into a question on finding out what happened.