The most vibrant of them all, Holi is truly the festival of love, which has to be experienced, celebrated and literally ‘paint the town red’ with! The festival of colours that celebrates the essence of Lord Krishna in his true form, and to do so anything that is made during Holi needs to bring alive all our sense and made with dollops of love, which is why milk is used quite generously as are other aromatic and digestive ingredients. Here are some of the most amazing recipes that one needs to try out this year for the festival!
Let’s start with the most amazing milk cake recipe by the amazing chef Sabyasachi Gorai! It’s a milk cake par excellence and nothing like what you’ve tasted earlier. A light and fluffy sponge cake soaked in three different kinds of milk and it literally floats around on a bed of gorgeous, silken, flavourful milk
THREE MILK CAKE SPONGE BY CHEF SABYSACHI GORAI
Egg White – 9 Nos
Egg yolk – 9 Nos
Breakfast sugar – 200 gms
Vanilla essence – 5 gms
Flour – 200 gms
Baking powder – 5 gms
Cooking cream – 200 gms
Milk – 500 gms
Milk powder – 50 gms
Condensed Milk – 100 gms
Cashew nuts – 100 gms
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (170 degrees C). Grease and flour one 9×13 inch baking pan.
2. Sieve the flour and baking powder together and keep aside.
3. Cream sugar and egg together until fluffy. Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract; beat well.
4. Add the flour mixture to the mixture 2 tablespoons at a time; mix until well blended. Pour batter into the prepared pan.
5. Bake at 350 degrees F (170 degrees C) for 30 minutes. Pierce cake several times with a fork.
6. Combine the whole milk, condensed milk, Cooking cream milk powder, and evaporated milk together. Pour over the top of the cooled cake. Pipe the custard and serve with nuts.
ALOO KE GUTKE BY CHEF PAWAN BISHT OF ONE 8
This traditional dish from Uttarakhand is an absolute must-have on Holi. This is an incredible snack and can be had on-the-go while playing with colours and water.
Medium size potatoes – 4
Mustard oil – 4 tablespoons
Cumin seeds – 1 tablespoon
Coriander powder – 1 tablespoon
Red chili powder – 1 teaspoon
Turmeric powder – ½ teaspoon
Chopped green chilies – 2
Dry red chili – 2
Chopped coriander – a handful
Salt to taste
Note: One can add Jakhiya (Dog mustard) or Mustard seeds too depending on the availability.
1. Take a vessel, put it on medium heat and parboil the potatoes, take them out and peel
2. Cut the potatoes into wedges and keep aside.
3. Take a kadhai, put over medium heat and add mustard oil.
4. Add red dry chillies in the hot oil, fry well and keep aside.
5. Now, add cumin seeds to the oil and fry till they crackle, add turmeric powder add this point.
6. Add boiled potato wedges and mix well. After this add all the masala and green chillies to the potatoes and give a good stir.
7. Cook on a slow heat till the potatoes are properly done. Add coriander leaves, adjust seasoning and serve hot.
KANJI VADA BY DR RUCHI MITTAL OF MEALSNMILES
Kanji Vada is one dish that marks the onset of spring and is made around the end of winters in most of the households in Rajasthan and UP. Traditional kanji vada in UP is made with urad daal and hing, which is soaked in fermented water that has mustard and chilli powders, along with salt. These are then stored in earthen pots for a couple of days to keep it chilled. Braj ki Holi is incomplete without this dish!
For the Kanji
Water Boiled and cooled – 1 ltr
Yellow Mustard powder – 1 tbsp
Black salt – 1 tbsp
Turmeric – 1/2 tsp
Chili powder optional – 1/2 tsp
Mix all the above ingredients in a glass jar or earthen pot and keep in the sun. Keep it covered with a muslin cloth to induce fermentation.
For the Fritters (vadas)
1. Take 100 gms of urad dal, soaked for two hours and ground to a fine paste.
2. Add a pinch of hiing and beat it with wet hands and fry them into lemon size fritters till golden.
3. Dunk the vadas in the fermented water for a day or two and serve garnished with chopped mint leaves.
KESAR DUDHIYA KEBAB BY CHEF SAHIL SINGH OF VDELIVERONLINE
This is his version of Peshawar kebabs, creamy saffron kebabs made by khoya and milk—a delight for a festival that needs snacks constantly!
Paneer – one block medium
Jeera crushed – 1 Teaspoon
Salt – 1 Teaspoon
Green Chili – 1 Teaspoon (chopped)
Ginger – 1 Teaspoon (chopped or grated)
Grated Mawa – 5 Tablespoons
Cashews – 1 Tablespoon
Cream – 2 Tablespoons
Green Cardamom Powder – 1 Teaspoon
Chopped Coriander Leaves – 1 Teaspoon
Milk Powder – 2 Tablespoons
Saffron – a pinch
Roasted Chana Powder – 2 Teaspoons
Amul Cheese – 1 Cube
1. Take a bowl and add in grated paneer. Now grate half Amul cheese cube in the bowl. Add grated mawa, cream, and finely chopped cashews.
2. Add in the chopped ginger, chopped green chili, salt to taste, milk powder, green coriander leaves, saffron and roasted Chana powder.
3. Mix well and mash the mixture using your hands and bring it in a form of dough.
4. Now take a pan and add in the clarified butter.
5. Place your shaped kebab and shallow fry them very carefully as they are very soft.
6. Cook the kebabs for 2 minutes on both sides and then plate them and serve with green chutney.
As always, all is well that ends well and here, the final recipe is just that! Globally a ‘Superfood’, Hemp is rich in fibre, proteins, vitamins and amino acids, there are various health benefits of its consumption. The product comes as a Ayurvedic Proprietary Medicine and all parts of the Hemp can be used to produce Superfoods that can be consumed as seeds, powder or oil. Here’s a Hemp Saffron Thandai that’s difficult to replace!
HEMP SAFFRON THANDAI BY KAMA KM, THE BIG BHAANG THEORY
Serves: 8-10 Portions
Hemp Hearts (shelled hemp seeds) – 1 cup
White Pepper – 1 Teaspoon
Saunf – 2 Teaspoons
Dried Rose Petals – 4 Teaspoons
Green Cardamom pods – 5-6 Pods
Kesar – 6-8 STRANDS
Milk – 200 ml per glass
Honey as per taste
The THANDAI RECIPE
• Grind all the dry ingredients together to a fine powder and store it in an airtight container.
• Add 2 tablespoons of powder in 1 glass of cold milk.
• Add 2 teaspoons of honey.
• Garnish with saffron strands and Hemp Hearts.
With all its vibrance, unbiased love, colour, food and drink, and the overall vibe, Holi is more of an emotion—a celebration of one’s own sense of style, party, and food for the soul. Have a great festival!
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‘THE MAURITANIAN’ IS FAR REMOVED FROM THE RUN-OF-THE-MILL FILMS ABOUT TERRORISM
When the noted French-Algerian actor Tahar Rahim received the script for “The Mauritanian” he was expecting another run-of-the-mill Hollywood script propagating a familiar sense of Islamophobia. For the last decade ever since his breakthrough performance in the celebrated French filmmaker Jacques Audiard’s prison drama “A Prophet”, Hollywood had been offering the same kind of roles over and over again. One opening the script when he came across the word “Guantanamo” his apprehensions were more or less confirmed. But to his great surprise, he discovered something very different. The character offered to him, Mohamedou Ould Slahi is a real person who isn’t a terrorist but was simply accused of being one.
Mohamedou, a Mauritanian man on whose memoir the film is based, was deemed guilty by the US authorities through some vague association. As a result, he was imprisoned for over 14 years without any trial in Guantanamo Bay where he was constantly subjected to torture and abuse by US soldiers. He was finally released in October 2016. In Rahim’s words, “It’s the first time I see a Hollywood movie with a sympathetic Muslim at the centre.” And Rahim, to his credit, plays Mohamedou as a gentle soul who somehow keeps his sanity intact despite years of horrific treatment. The Mauritanian, directed by Kevin Macdonald, stars the legendary Jodie Foster in the role of the no-nonsense defence lawyer who fights for his release with Benedict Cumberbatch essaying the part of the military prosecutor Lt. Colonel Stuart Couch.
There is no denying that a lot changed after 9/11 as the world became far more paranoid than it had ever been. Soon after the tragic events of September 11, the western world started witnessing a dramatic rise in Islamophobia. Now, according to Wikipedia, “Islamophobia is the fear of, hatred of, or prejudice against the religion of Islam or Muslims in general, especially when seen as a geopolitical force or the source of terrorism.” The increase in Islamophobia could be attributed to Osama bin Laden’s Al-Qaeda. Hollywood, of course, played its part through its stereotypical portrayal of Muslims and Islam in countless films. And it was until Mira Nair’s 2012 film “The Reluctant Fundamentalist” that the issue got properly addressed by Hollywood.
On the other hand, Bollywood filmmaker Kabir Khan highlighted the issue in his 2009 film “New York” through the character of Sameer Sheikh, essayed by John Abraham, who Sam gets arrested and detained for nine months as a suspected terrorist. Though he is eventually released due to lack of evidence, the impact of being detained and tortured permanently changes him in ways that are difficult to comprehend for those surrounding him. A couple of years before the Kabir Khan film, the noted Pakistani director Shoaib Mansoor made “Khuda Kay Liye” which presents a graphic account of a man getting detained and tortured for a year at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp due to his Islamic background after the US authorities receive a false complaint from his neighbour.
But, in many ways, The Mauritanian stands out in its depiction of the atrocities that prisoners at Guantanamo Bay have undergone over the years. For, Mohamedou’s 2015 memoir titled “Guantanamo Diary” is a testament to what he had to experience for 14 years of his life. He wrote the book in 2005 in Guantanamo Bay but each page had to be submitted to military censors. A total of 2,500 redactions were made before releasing the manuscript to his attorneys seven years later. So, the 2015 edition which went on to become an international bestseller was heavily redacted. He was even prohibited from receiving a copy of his published book while imprisoned. It was only in 2017 that it was republished with redactions fully removed. While the Biden administration has declared its intention to shut down the Guantanamo Bay detention camp there is no certainty that it is going to happen any time soon. But, Mohamedou’s story of redemption certainly gives one hope.
The Mauritanian is far removed from the run-of-the-mill Hollywood films we have become accustomed to watching with the theme of global terrorism at its core. Kevin Macdonald and his team of writers offer something refreshingly different. Here is a deeply humanistic film that isn’t afraid to question the dubious role played by the US authorities in destroying the lives of innocent people like Mohamedou. It exposes how both the Bush as well as the Obama administrations kept prolonging Mohamedou’s ordeal at Guantanamo Bay. Perhaps, it’s for this reason the film didn’t find much traction with the members of The Academy despite receiving multiple Golden Globe and BAFTA nominations. The performance by Tahar Rahim (who interestingly stars as the con artist and serial killer Charles Sobhraj in the Netflix series “The Serpent”) certainly deserved an Oscar nomination for portraying the part of Mohamedou Ould Slahi with such great conviction. Also, the deeply nuanced performances by Jodie Foster and Benedict Cumberbatch deserved more attention.
PARINEETION BETTER PORTRAYAL OF WOMEN ON-SCREEN
NEW DELHI: Parineeti Chopra, who is on a roll, recently opened up about female representation on screen and shared that she wants to do her “bit to portray women better”. Parineeti said, “I strongly feel that actresses have to change the narrative of how women are portrayed on screen. Right from my debut, I have tried to do this. I have always taken it on myself to do something out of the ordinary, not portray the quintessential heroine that Bollywood has tried to depict for ages. My last three films – ‘The Girl On The Train’, ‘Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar’ and ‘Saina’ – were also an attempt to give varied, bold, confident, ambitious heroines to audiences. My next film choices will resonate this thought process too as I want to do my bit to portray women better.” She wishes that all the actors in Bollywood should be conscious about how they represent women on screen. Parineeti said, “If all of us are able to change the way women are presented on screen, it will go a long way in changing the perception of girls in our society. Cinema can impact the minds of audiences and so, let us use this medium to affect positive changes in our society.”
SHAMA SIKANDER’S MUSIC VIDEO ‘HAWA KARDA’ TO BE OUT ON 15 APRIL
Shama Sikander shot for a song called Hawa Karda, the song is by Afsana Khan and Sahil Sharma also known as Sahil Syndicate. It features Shama and Gaurav Bajaj. The music is by Geet and the lyrics have been done by Raas. Shama spoke to The Sunday Guardian and exclaimed, “It was a fun, peppy and trendy song. I am sure the youngsters are going to love it. We shot it with the utmost respect to all protocols and wrapped up pretty quick. I am excited for the song to come out and the audience’s reaction to it. The song will be out on Koinage Records. I am happy to be able to work during such times where people have no work and are seeing some really difficult days. It’s a blessing and I am grateful to be still entertaining people.”
Shama also opened up about her equation with her co-star, “The moment I heard the song, I decided to do it. I have worked with Gaurav for the first time, it was great and everything was at ease.”
On asking about which medium she enjoys the most, she said, “I enjoy doing everything be it television, movies, or music videos, it depends on the script. The character I play is of a girl who is bold, beautiful and overpowering.” The song, marking a comeback for Shama, will release on 15 April.
MANDIRA’S STRONG REPLY TO ‘SICKOS’ TROLLING DAUGHTER
MUMBAI: Mandira Bedi is not among the celebrities who ignore social media bullies, especially when they try to troll her daughter. She recently called out a bunch of haters in her Instagram stories for posting distasteful comments about Tara. Mandira and her husband Raj Kaushal adopted her in July last year. She is just four years old.
In her recent Instagram stories, Mandira revealed she’s been at the receiving end of nasty remarks, crudely suggesting her daughter is a misfit in the family, particularly because she’s adopted. A “prop daughter”, she was told. A furious Mandira singled out one such user and the comment and wrote: “People like this need to be given a special mention. Kudos, you got my attention, you piece of s**t.”
Addressing another troll, who questioned her parenting skills and intentions behind including Tara in the family, she wrote: “Sickos like this, are the biggest cowards too, who only know how to wag their tongues behind the shield of anonymity.”
WHY ABHISHEK FELT HE WASN’T MADE FOR BOLLYWOOD
NEW DELHI : Do you know Abhishek Bachchan, who deals with social media trolls in a witty way, wasn’t always okay with handling criticism? His journey in the film industry and words of wisdom from his father Amitabh Bachchan helped him a great deal. In a recent interview with RJ Siddharth Kannan, Abhishek admitted that stepping into Bollywood seemed like a “mistake.” At one point, he even said that he wasn’t “made for this industry.” In the interview, Abhishek said, “To fail on a public platform is very difficult. There was no social media back then but I read via media that some were abusing me while some said that I do not know acting. At one point in time, I felt it was my mistake that I came into the industry as whatsoever I was trying, it was not working. I went to my dad and said maybe I am not made for this industry.”
When the actor started questioning himself, his father helped him to cope up with all the criticism coming his way. Big B told him, “’I never brought you up to be a quitter. Every morning you have to wake up and fight for your place under the sun. As an actor, you are improving with every film.’” Abhishek’s career trajectory has been full of ups and downs. However, post-Manmarziyaan he seems to be on the right track. The actor left an impact on OTT with Breathe: Into the Shadows and Ludo. He ecently starred in The Big Bull and will next be seen in a film based on Bob Biswas.
GEAR UP FOR AKSHAYE KHANNA & RAVEENA TANDON AS RIVALS IN ‘LEGACY’
NEW DELHI: Viewers could be in for a visual treat when Akshaye Khanna and Raveena Tandon will clash as rivals in Vijay Gutte’s ‘Legacy’. Being mounted on a big scale for a global audience, the drama series would be shot across multiple countries.
Akshaye shares, “It is refreshing to work on the content that challenges our boundaries as an industry as a whole. Given the massive scale of the show, we are cognizant of the immense responsibility to deliver our bests to create a content piece the audience looks forward to. I’m glad ‘Legacy’ is going to be my first web series.”
“‘Legacy’ presents an interesting tale of power struggle with an entertaining amount of drama, which grasped my attention. It is a fine work of content articulated interestingly to resonate with a global audience. I am excited to be associated with the show and looking forward to beginning this journey,” exclaims Raveena .‘Legacy’ marks Vijay’s maiden outing on the OTT space. He informs, “It is an aspirational project mounted on a large scale reflecting upon the dark realities of the professional world. I am thrilled to be reuniting with Akshaye for this and exhilarated to have Raveena on board. This talent powerhouse is set for an epic rivalry.”
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