Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Teaser Tuesdays-The Immortals of Meluha

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

I am currently reading "The Immortals of Meluha" by Amish.Its a lovely read. My teasers from page 272

'I am Neelkanth!' 
All the soldiers looked up at the destroyer of evil mesmerised.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The source of true knowledge

Well the moon has visited the Pushya or Poosam constellation known as Delta Cancri in English today.It also happens to be a Thursday .This combination and occurrence is considered auspicious.This is also the right time to appease the Lord of all knowledge Dakshinamoorthy.He is an aspect of Lord Shiva ,a personification of knowledge.He is dispeller of ignorance and bestower of wisdom.He sits facing the south under the banyan tree with a jnana mudra.It was a pleasure to watch the abhishegam and archanai after understanding the nuances of his being.Salutations to this divine exponent.

The fount of true knowledge

         After the pooja we had konda kadalai and panchamritham as prasad.   

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

An unforgettable saturday home tour.

While checking out options for our new home,we chanced up on this shop called Aadhi Arts at Teynampet.The store boasts of  beauties of the wooden kind.Such class.They deal in antique and colonial furniture and also reproductions in Burma Teak and Rose wood.The store owner Mr.Prabhakaran Sambandam is a very friendly and approachable person.He can enlighten you about any query you have on antiques.Apart from his business,photography is his main passion.He has such multifarious interest's I'm yet to find out more!Well last weekend he was very benevolent towards us.We just showed up at his store and without much ado we landed up at his home for a home tour.How cool is that.Check out some of the pictures I clicked. 

Home is where the heart is.I love these antique columns.It lends a unique charm to a home.

What an elegant door.The frames are made of teak wood and the main door made of rosewood.This is in the first floor which leads to the antique pillar in the first pic. 

Another lovely door.This is the entrance to his architect daughter Harinee's room on the second floor.

Harinee's gorgeous study,with a nice lived in feel to it.

A four poster bed fit for a princess.

A fabulous rosewood cabinet.

An antique chest of drawers.

There were so many other things to be photographed like antique Tanjore paintings and panels and so many other artefact's .It will surely deserve another post.It is splendid indeed to wake up to these timeless beauties.I was too overwhelmed by the lovely home and the hospitality shown,I wish I could have taken better pictures.Thank you for making our evening so cherishable.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Grand sweets anna nagar

Think Chennai.Think Grand.Grand Sweets has become synonymous with every thing Chennai.Chennaite's at some point in their lives have savoured their offerings. They are famous for their sweets,savouries,podis and pickles.Now Chennaites throng their corridors for their yummy tiffin.At any given point,one can always spot a long queue of people frenetically placing orders.Check out the moments that defined my visit.The decor is also very traditional.I love the ambiance here.

Traditional thoon adorning the entrance

A hanging Lakshmi Vilakku

yummy adais getting ready

Soft polis waiting to be devoured

Rava idlis waiting to be steamed

Onion rava dosa waiting for the onion shower

Davaras and tumblers waiting to be filled with Madras Filter coffee
Madras Filter coffee is simply outstanding here
    Perfect for Sunday evening tiffin outing.

Peedari Maakali Amman Temple visit anna nagar.

Saptha Kannimar sannidhi
The fourteenth of Feb happened to be the growing moon phase of Ekadesi and my mom promptly lit up the earthen lamps for the virgin mothers.She wants to do it this for 27 times.She has been frequenting this temple at Naduvakkarai Anna Nagar,called the Peedari MaaKali Amman Sidhi Vinayagar Temple.This is situated on third main road near Nalli silks.

The gopuram of this temple
Bairavar accompanied by the moon and the sun gods
Shanthi sells flowers and earthen lamps inside the temple sits close to the bairavar sannidhi.She has been here for the past thirty years 

Peedaari Maakali Amman Vimanam
Cute nandi Vahanam

The main deity here is known as Mahalingeshwarar and his consort Goddess Kamakshi.The other deities inside the temple are Lord Ganesh,Lord Muruga with consorts,Peedari Maakali,Adi Peedari Maakali and Lord Hanuman.Initially this temple contained Goddess Adi Peedaari Maakali,later a sprawling temple was constructed in the year 1990 and the Kumbabisekham performed in 1992.On the whole it was a pleasant visit. On March 2 2011, a special homam is going to be conducted 4 times on Maha Shivaratri day .Check the timings here

7 in the evening-First Kalam
10 in the night-Second Kalam
1 midnight-Third kalam
4:30-Early morning-Fourth Kalam  

Do join in on Maha Shivaratri day.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Malgudi at Savera

On Friday evening we visited Malgudi, our favourite restaurant where we have celebrated many occasions.This restaurant is named after the village made famous by R.K Narayan.I loved the decor and food there.Check out the food we gorged on.The best part about this place apart from food is the kili josiyam.Ganesh the parrot pulled out the cards for me.I enjoyed the experience.We ordered keerai vadai and banana flower vadai's.They were mildly spiced,crisp and so full of flavour.Perfect to dip with the three kinds of chutneys.For the sweet starters we ordered the cheese,pineapple and cherry sticks and vella(jaggery) adai.These were also great,not cloyingly sweet,just the right flavours hitting the palate.This sweet and karam combo was a perfect way to start off our meal.But we could not go past the starters.The vadams,vella adai,cauliflower fritters were on the house.We were stuffed by then and decided to go home feeling immensely satisfied.Definitely for keeps this place.

The courtyard@Malgudi

Shiny utensils

Traditional stove top

Ganesh the parrot who pulled out my card.
Yummy keerai vadai's,vazhaipoo vadai's and chutneys

Cheese pineapple and cherry sticks

Tasty vella adai
The Malgudi is located within Savera Hotel  at Dr. Radhakrishnan Road.This going to Patty's weekend wrap up

Thursday, February 3, 2011

A guest Blog with Suchitra Venkatesh

Suchitra Venkatesh who is an accomplished culinarian,has an exhaustive collection of recipes at her blog.She loves crafts and is big on DIY projects.She is also very passionate about visiting temples and has a wealth of information about temples.She has written a small note about 108 Divyadesams.She has already visited 60 Divyadesams .It is interesting to note that of the total 108 Divyadesams two of them do not belong to the realm of the earth.They are called Thirup paaRkadal and Paramapadham.  Read on 

Image courtesy:Srivaishnavam.com
Lord Vishnu is considered to be supreme by the Sri Vaishnavas. Alwars who are believed to be the amsams of Lord Narayana dedicated their lives towards the Lord. There are in all 12 azhwars of which one is a woman Sri Andal. 11 of these 12 Alwars have sung verses praising the Lord in 108 temples.

The collection of all these verses sung by the azhwars is called Naal ayiram divya prabantham wherein naal ayiram means 4000 verses. The temples are collectively known as Divyadesams. Of these one temple is in Nepal, 105 in India and the other two in the celestial world. Most of the temples are in Tamilnadu and the temples are classified as

Chozha naatu divyadesam - 40 temples

Pandiya naatu divyadesam - 18 temples

Tondai naatu divyadesam - 22 temples

Malai naatu divyadesam -13 temples

Vadu naatu divyadesam -11 temples

Nadu naatu divyadesam - 2 temples

Vinnulagam - 2 temples   
Thank you Suchitra for this informative note.The benefit of visiting all the Divyadesams is Moksha.I think all Jivatams finally seek the lords feet. 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Appalam Vathal Kozhambu

Appalam Vethal Kozhambu
Ullundu Appalam(urad pappad)-3 nos
Oil-4 spoons
Tamarind-Lemon Size
Salt to taste
Molagapodi or sambar podi-1 tbsp 
Rice flour- 1 tsp
Jaggery- a small piece
Mustard-1/2 tsp
Toor dal-1 tbsp
Asafoetida-1/2 tsp
Curry leaves- a sprig
Fenugreek seeds-1/2 tsp

This kozhambu can be made using different types of sun dried vathals  like sundaka,pavaka,manathakalli,kothavaranga and vendakka.Take a pan,add the oil.Splutter the mustard seeds add toor dal,fenugreek seeds,asafoetida powder and curry leaves.Fry till done.Add the appalam bits and fry well.Take tamarind water and add to the fried appalams.Now add molagapodi and salt.Let this mixture simmer well,till the raw smell of the sambar podi goes away.You can add a small piece of jaggery for the sweet sour taste. Once this is cooked well,take raw rice flour add water to make a watery paste and add this to the kozhambu for thickening.Switch off till done.This dish tastes great with mola keerai masiyal and vengaya vadaam.You can add a dollop of ghee to rice if its hot and then add this kozhambu.If the rice is cold you can add nal ennai(sesame oil) and then the kozhambu.According to my MIL,she says this kozhambu tastes like "then"(honey) to her!

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