Saturday, December 25, 2010

Hurray Indigo

I returned after an hectic and  joyful trip to India last week. We flew to Chennai and had to visit Vadodara to meet our friends.  We had confirmed bookings by the Indigo airlines from Chennai to Vadodara via Mumbai.  When the booking was made online through "Make my trip", the transit period in Mumbai was only 45 minutes.  Thinking that the job of shifting gates to the connecting flight in the same terminal should not be a problem, we went ahead with the plan. 

While boarding from Chennai, we were greeted by the friendly young staff of Indigo airlines.  After securing the boarding pass from Chennai to Mumbai, when questioned about the boarding pass of the second leg, we were told that we need to get it only in Mumbai.  On hearing this, a sort of uncomfortable feeling spread on us.  While arguing about the time factor in Mumbai etc etc, came the next shock.  The staff told us that we have to collect our baggages and then do another check-in with a new boarding pass which will be issued only in Mumbai.  45 minutes is all you have and having to do such jobs would be impossible.  Off ran my husband to meet the Manager of Indigo.  After considerable discussion and spelling out the impracticability of the situation, they came with a positive reply that one of their staff would be ready with our boarding pass at the disembarking gate in Mumbai. This seemed to be a tension-relieving solution. Now, the question of baggage!!!! After many calls to Mumbai, again the Manager came positive feedback of transfering our baggage immediately on landing in Mumbai.  He also promised that they would load the baggage directly to the Vadodara flight and we need not be bothered about it.  We both heaved a sigh of relief, but everything should fall in place as told to us.  Easily said than done !!!!!

On reaching Mumbai, an announcement was made to offload us first. We ran to the gate and was greeted by a pleasant looking staff who was holding our boarding pass.  We were even escorted to the boarding gate by another staff who ran as much as we did.  Finally, on reaching the appropriate gate, we thanked him and the staffs of Indigo.  It was our maiden flight through this airlines and found them very helpful.  Indigo has a young fleet of ground staff who are on their toes all the time and they claim that their flights are on time or ahead of time.  I vouch for that as all the flights were 5 to 10 minutes ahead of the arrival time.

Thanks to Indigo for making our trip possible without any hassle. 

Moral of the incident: Transit time should always be more than 2 hours, be it domestic or International.

"Sometimes when we become angry/upset/disappointed at others for not reacting to our wants and needs as we would like, it may reflect something similar about ourselves that we may not like and challenge us to become more aware of our own shortcomings."     Jenny Jimenez

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Lip smacking Creamy Malai Kofta

This recipe is one of my family favourite and if the procedure is followed in dedication, nothing can go wrong.  It is a treat to dig into the Koftas and enjoy the paneer, nuts and raisins.

Ingredients - Koftas:
Boiled and mashed potatoes - 2 cups
Finely chopped and boiled vegetables (beans,carrots,peas etc.) - 3/4 cup
Paneer - 1 cup
Red chilly powder - 1/2 tsp
Coriander powder - 3/4 tsp
Cumin powder - 3/4 tsp 
Chopped nuts (Almonds,cashew nuts and raisins)

Ingredients - Gravy:
Onions - 3 med.size chopped
Tomato paste - 1 1/2 tsp
Ginger-garlic paste - 1 1/2 tsp
Garam masala powder - 1 tsp
Cumin powder - 3/4 tsp
Red chilly powder - 3/4 tsp
Nuts (Almonds, cashew nuts) made into a fine paste -3 tbsp
Heavy cream - 2 tbsp
Finely chopped coriander leaves-1 tsp

To prepare koftas:
Combine the mashed potatoes, boiled vegetables, paneer together with all the spices and salt.  Make sure the dough is firm and can be made into balls.  While making balls, fill 1/2 tsp of nuts and raisins mix in the centre and seal it firm.  Pour little oil in the Kuzhipaniyaram pan and shallow fry the koftas by tossing them at regular intervals, so that they are evenly fried and gets the golden brown color.  Drain the oil and keep aside..

To prepare gravy:
Take oil in a kadai and add chopped onions till it becomes translucent.  Then, add the ginger-garlic paste, garam masala powder,cumin powder and the red chilly powder.  When the masalas are done, add the tomato paste and keep stirring till the raw smell disappears.  Then, add the nuts paste and keep stirring in low flame. Caution is needed at this point, as the nuts paste tends to stick to the base of the kadai, hence continuous stirring is advised.  Add enough water to make a thick gravy.  When it begins to boil, simmer the flame and add koftas to this gravy and cook for 5 minutes.  Garnish with finely chopped coriander.  Drizzle the heavy cream and then the sinful indulgence :):)

Yummy malai kofta is ready to devour.

'We are all dietetic sinners, only a small portion of what we eat nourishes us; the balance goes to waste and loss of energy' - Laiko Bahrs

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Yummylicious tea time cup cakes

Cup cakes are always a delight to bake and instantly devour. I made some simple cup cakes without any frosting, not to add more calories.  But, added some choclate chips  and nuts to some. This is one of the perfect cup cake recipe which cannot go wrong and courtesy of .  I made some slight variation to the original recipe.


All purpose flour  - 1 1/2 cups  
Sugar  - 2/3 cup granulated sugar
Eggs  - 3 large eggs
Butter  - 1/2 cup or 1 stick unsalted butter at room temperature
Milk - 1/4 cup
Nuts of your choice
Chocolate chips
Baking powder - 1 1/2 tsp
Vanilla extract -  1 tsp
Salt - 1/4 tsp

Preheat oven to 350 deg.

In a bowl, add butter and sugar and beat it until light and fluffy.  Once the mix is done, add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Add the vanilla extract.

In a separate bowl, add the flour,salt and the baking powder and blend well.

Add the flour mix and the milk alternatively to the butter sugar mix, beginning and ending with flour.Divide the mix and add chocolate to some and nuts to the rest.

Fill in the muffin cups and bake for 16-18 minutes.  Insert a toothpick to check if it is baked. Once done, remove it and keep in a rack to cool.

You can have it plain or top it with frosting. I preferred having it plain with tea.

'A compromise is the art of dividing a cake in such a way that everyone believes that he has the biggest piece' - Ludwig Erhard
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