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Banana pie with Maple Syrup.

That is what we had for for dinner yesterday. A big and famous bakery is there near our home and they are very famous world wide. They keep on experimenting with new food items and yesterday they had banana pie on sale.

Banana pie, to get it ready made is very rare.Rarer than the blue moon, but this bakery keeps on making different banana items.

As, we were passing that bakery’s counter, we spotted the huge banana pie on the display shelf.

To tell you the truth, the pie was really attractive and under the golden light, it was shining more brightly.

So, faster than the speed of light, I went to the counter and bought us two banana pies.

They asked me whether it was take away? I replied to them-“No, we would have it here”.

Fast enough, they quickly microwaved it for a minute and served us the banana pies.

After serving it, they told us to hold on for a minute, as they were getting something else for us.

  • We were kept waiting for about two minutes and we kept looking at the waiter, who had asked us to wait and we kept looking at our pies with our big greedy eyes, as big as the new moon.We were really and truly very hungry.

After two and a half minute, believe it or not, they brought us a big jar of Canadian maple syrup for us and told us -“It’s complimentary”.

I can’t tell you all, how nice the banana pie tasted and after adding the maple syrup over it, the pie simply melted in our mouths and we kept digging and eating until the last crumb was deep inside our stomach and resting there peacefully and contentedly .

After that, I left out a large and magnanimous belch. We wanted to have coffee after it, but decided against it.

The taste and smell of the banana pie and the maple syrup is something, which I wanted to keep with me till I was sleeping and having sweet and good dreams.

It is rare for such banana pies to made.Kudos and cheers to the chefs and makers of such beautiful and understated pie.

It felt like the pie, which comes out of Ma’s oven and even Ma felt it too.My Ma is the greatest cook in the universe and her Ma is the super greatest cook in all the universes.  Beyond that no other chefs exist.

Have banana pie with maple syrup and if you like it, then don’t forget to belch either loudly or politely.

honey on white bowl

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Jhaalmuri Wala.

Esplanade in Central Kolkata, was a place which I would visit everyday. Ma would bring me home from school via that route.

My whole fascination about Esplanade, was not it’s grandeur, but the “jhaalmuri wala”, who used stand near the Esplanade bus stop and sell mouth ravishing, tantalizing and mind boggling jhaalmuri.

Jhaalmuri is a mouth watering Bengali delicacy snack, made of puffed rice,coconut pieces, mustard oil, mixed sweet and spicy chanachur (a type of sweet,salty and sour,crunchy fried snack) ,peanuts, onions and green chilies, chat masala and black salt.

The “jhaalmuri wala” was nearly aged eighty years.Still he used to stand at the same place without fail everyday and would sell jhaalmuri there whether it be summer or rains or the biting winter.

After spending four and half hours in school, when I used to go and stand there in front of the jhaalmuri wala, I would feel that, I have reached the most peaceful place on earth.

Ma and me, we used to call him-“dadu”.

In bengali, Ma would say to him -“Dadu,du khana, du takar jhaalmuri deben.”

It means-“Dadu,give us two jhaalmuris, worth rupees two each.”

Smilingly, he would start preparing the jhaalmuri. He would take a newspaper thonga and then puffed rice, chanachur,coconut pieces,mustard oil,peanuts,onions and green chilies,chat masala and black salt and start mixing and churning them nicely in an big utensil and then fill the thongas (newspapar packets) with jhaalmuri

He was more than a master, more than a master chef at preparing jhaalmuri. All the utensil units were extremely clean and he was a man of big heart.

He would give us jhaalmuri worth rupees four and would charge us two rupees instead and if Ma, asked him for bit more, then he would add a bit more jhaalmuri.

“Thonga” in bengali means a packet, made from newspaper or brown paper.

One “thonga” of jhaalmuri was sufficient for both of us, but we used to take two thongas of jhaalmuri, and have one thonga right then and there shared between Ma and me and the another one, Ma would put the other one inside my bag, so that we could have it afterwards.

One fine day, we had purchased two thongas of jhaalmuri from him and we found out that he had added very few peanuts in it and Ma pointed it out to him and like a chef in troubled waters, he very nicely garnished the jhaalmuri with bright and fried brown peanuts.

Simply, a packet of it and a glug of water from my water bottle was enough to super fill my stomach and the instant we would seat in the bus for going home, I would doze off.

After many years, we went to that place and found out that he was not there.

Some other jhaalmuri wala had taken his place and that jhaalmuri wala didn’t know anything about him.

While,I was writing this blog,I felt like crying because those wonderful days have gone by and nothing can replace them.

 

Sand Surfing with ice cream in one hand.

Have you ever gone sand surfing? Well it is one of the most difficult game to play.You have to surf on highly volatile sand and if wind blows @ 20km/ph, you will have sand in your eyes, your clothes and you will be a complete mess. It is one of the sports where the players with great sports aptitude are seen struggling. The heat becomes too much to bear and at the end, one can be seen perspiring like a melting lolly.

So, to make it more difficult, take an ice cream ( a lolly/ a bar/ a cone) in any one of your hands and then go sand surfing and while surfing, try to eat that ice cream.I am hundred percent sure that the ice cream will either fall off or it will be covered with sand particles, making it ineligible to eat or while trying to eat it, you will fall off the surf and the ice cream will be smashed all over your face or clothes.

Despite all this, if your ice cream survives the sand surfing and if you have even eaten it once, then simply go and buy yourself a big gift, for your excellence.

Vanilla-The Rustic Girl.

One upon a time,in a far away village, Vanilla, a village rustic girl resided. She used to spend her days playing and hoping around and skipping.

She was and still is a master in skipping.Once at a time at least one hundred and fifty skips, she used to do without losing her breath.

Her father Mr.Rodricks, was a small time farmer who had his own small farm surrounding his home.

He had a wife, a daughter, a son. His sister lived far away from him and hardly ever bothered to keep in touch with him.

Since, his childhood his mother, had taught him that, the less that you have, the more successful and happier that you would be.So, he was always contended with whatever little he could earn.

His farm consisted of delight and happiness in measures of strawberries,mulberries, lemons,brinjals,tomatoes, of two pigs and a cow.They a had small scarecrow placed in the farm.

The scarecrow was Vanilla’s friend as she used to swing and go around it many times a day.

As a result, the scarecrow would sometimes become bent from excessive swinging and seeing that she would rush to her father and bring him out to correct the scarecrow.

She would attend the school twice a week, as her father couldn’t pay for more than that and she was very happy with, because then she could help her mother in her daily works and could take nice care of her brother. The village school had the option of attending classes for two days or four days or six days a week.A student’s parent who selected the two days or four days a week method, had to ensure that his /her child was home schooled, so that he/she would be upto date with her studies.

Her school would start at eleven in the morning and get over at one-fifteen in the afternoon,every Monday and Friday.Therefore, every morning at seven, she would go out to sell whatever was the fresh produce of her farm that day.

The village road-side market was a lively place.Each morning, sellers would come and settle themselves opposite the village shops and shout at the top of their voices-“buy from us,buy from us, coriander six rupees for two bunches.Lemons – eight for ten !”.

Vanilla, would be seen there with a small basket in hand, trying to sell her farm’s produce.

While her friend Joseph went to school, he noticed her every morning.Without fail, from Monday to Saturday,she would be there trying to sell her farm products.

He liked having berries, so he used to buy berries from her, regularly.

The other road side sellers would become angry with her for trying sell her farm products, near their placements and they would try to shoo her away.

She would be in her full spirit, indomitable and she would go and stand somewhere else and pursue the passing by customers, to buy the vegetables from her basket.

Her eyes would be sparkling always and there would be three to four stars twinkling in her eyes.

Sometimes, she would sell lemons, some days  she would sell tomatoes and sometimes she would sell spinach or sometimes she would sell something else.

On Sundays, her father would go to the main village market.There the market would sit every Sunday and people from other towns and nearby cities would come to sell their products and many customers would buy their products sometimes cheap or sometimes a bit costly.By the end of the selling hour, all the sellers would readily sell their products at half-price and then they would go home.On these days, Vanilla remains very happy with her father.

One day, while he was buying berries from her, he asked her-“the sellers shoo you everyday, but still how do you manage to sell your vegetables?”

Vanilla-“Let them shoo me.It doesn’t matter.I know one day the King will come and he will definitely do his job of answering them”

“Why would the king answer them? He is the King after all.”

“Its’ the King’s duties to help his people and he is sworn to do that”.

“If he doesn’t come, then?”

“I told you already, that he will come.”

With my full faith, I know that the king is coming.