October 04, 2006


I am tagged for this "The Butterfly Effect MeMe" by sra of 'When my soup came alive'!! and by Gattina ,Thank You, sra and Gattina!! :))

I understand that Dan@saltshaker.net started this meme! Thanks to you too!!and that we should send this MeMe and link to the original post, here it is! http://www.saltshaker.net/20060630/the-butterfly-effect..I will do that!!:))

The tag says "The Butterfly Effect Meme" asks you to name food items or events that changed your foodie life. Specifically you are asked to recall “an item, person, event, or place” that affected you profoundly – something that created a moment you can look back at and say “that was a defining moment.” It doesn’t have to be “big, splashy” things! Just something or someone who influenced you!"

The categories are:
1. An ingredient
2. A dish, a recipe
3. A meal (in a restaurant, a home, or elsewhere)
4. A cookbook or other written work
5. A food “personality” (chef, writer, etc.)
6. Another person in your life

Alrighty then, here I go!! :D

An Ingredient: Baking Powder!!
Well! Growing up in India for the first 26 yrs of my life, I never got to create any dishes like I do now as we always had a cook but in my teenage years, I became interested in baking!! You should know that at that time, most Indians didn't have ovens to bake but only those gas stoves to cook on stove top, which is still the usual way of cooking most Indian dishes!So I bought this little electric oven which fits just a round baking pan,plug in and bake a single cake at a time!!I didn't have a clue about yeast but baking powder was the hero of all cakes I baked!:) I was known as 'that cake girl', got invited to quite a few homes along with my little oven so I can bake some cakes for them too!!:D:D

A Dish: TAKA TAK!:))
'Taka Tak' is the name of a dish which is purely derived from the sound they make with two steel spatulas hitting the pan while the cooks making this dish!! "Taka Tak..Taka Tak..Taka Tak.." a rhythm of chopping veg and meat right on the pan on high heat!! Isn't that fun?!:))This dish as I read in Pat Chapman's book , supposed to have started in Peshawar,Pakistan!! Slowly crept into India, now it's a popular thing to do outdoors LIVE at the parties and weddings I hear!!:D
A Recipe; Taka Tak:You Need: Chicken (boneless, cut into cubes) - 2 cups, capsicum (cut into cubes)-2, onion (cut into cubes)-1cup, whole cherry tomatoes-1cup, green chilli (chopped)-2, Cumin seeds - 1 tsp, salt to taste, turmeric powder-1/2tsp, coriander powder-2tsp, red chilli powder-1/2tsp, garam masala powder-1tsp, kasoori methi-2tsp, oil-1tbsp, cashew nuts-2 tsp, fresh coriander (chopped),1tbsp ginger-garlic paste.
How To:Heat oil in a pan, add jeera, and let it crackle. Then add chopped onion and cook till it becomes light brown. Add ginger-garlic paste, put chicken cubes. Add cherry tomatoes and season with salt. Add red chilli powder, turmeric powder and coriander powder. Cook the chicken till well done. Add cashew nuts and cook!!All this while chopping Taka Tak with each addition of ingredients, donot use non-stick pan ofcourse!!:D
Add chopped chunks of onion, capsicum and tomato, Taka Tak for 5mins.Sprinkle with garam masala, kasoori methi and garnish with chopped coriander.Serve with chunks of country bread or parathas!! This recipe is from Chapman's book with some variations!! Enjoy!!

A Meal: My Grandmother's Bamboo Shoots with Rice Rottis:
YUM!! I think I should stop right there!!:D:D Click on the link to know more!!
Every summer of my school days were spent in My grand parents' coffee plantation and their 'unique' cuisine we got to taste, thanks to my mother who drag us there for 2 1/2 months whether we liked it or not!!:))I have LOTS of good memories of those times,not just good food but beautiful sceneries ,playing outside all day long and climbing up the tallest trees to pluck and eat various fruits!!I am sorry that my own kids in US cannot have that kind of pure fun, but play video games most of the time!!You have to send them to camps to climb trees, I guess!!:D

A Cookbook or other written work: OH!! So Many of them!! One cook book: 'DAKSHIN' by Chandra Padmanabhan!!
I like most of the recipes of Indian cuisine from all states!! India is so diverse with so many cultures and their cuisine that I don't think I will ever have enough time to taste all those delectable dishes before I die!!:)
This particular book I am biased about because and it's about South Indian dishes from all 4 states from the south and most recipes given are really authentic,and surprise!! I am a south Indian as well!!It took years for me to be a good cook, and am still learning!!I think I would rate this cook book a little more than the others because it did help me out a lot!!

A Food Personality: Who else but Martha Stewart!!:D:D
HEY! HEY! Stop laughing people!!:)) She may not be the ultimate cook or the most honest person in the world but that lady has some business Acumen!! She makes a simple meal look like a gourmet food and she makes you feel like you are THE smallest worm on this Earth if you are not very confident person or a cook!! I know LOT of people donot like (feel inadequate?!) her! But I think that lady is brilliant ,gutsy and I like her and I am a VERY confident person and a cook!!:))

Another person or persons in your life:Both my Grandmothers and Our old cook, Nanjappa!!
I love blogging about the recipes of my Grandmothers' cooking!! I feel that if we donot preserve and share those recipes, I am afraid they would die with them!! Younger generation probably wouldn't care so much!! There are some very rare dishes out there which will never come to light if we don't try and save them!!

When I think of 'food', I always think of this old cook we had in India! He practically raised me like his own grand child! Every day at dinner time, he would carry me with a bowl of food ,go outside in the garden and show me the Moon and the stars and tell lot of stories while he fed me!!I used to call him "Amma"(Mother!)for a long time!!:D
Even today, food equals stories and love to me, which is what I do for my own kids in return!!May your soul rest in peace , Nanjappa!!

That's about it!! Tag #4 is done!! YAY!!

I tag: Divya and Chaya of 'Culinary Journey to India" and Vani of 'Mysorean' for this meme. Thanks in advance ladies, hope you will take up this tag!!:))


sra said...

Asha, nice baking powder story, esp the bit about how u were invited to various houses to make cakes for them - so Indian, so charming.

FH said...

sra! That was funny and typical India , isn't it? :D
Thank you for tagging me!!I had fun remembering!!

Anonymous said...

A nice tag indeed!!! Enjoyed reading your coloful recipes and your tak tak recipes is so new for me. Will definitely try it out...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for tagging us...v r over the board as it's going to be our first meme!

Chandrika said...

A beautifully written meme, Asha! That incident about the cake baking is so very Indian..

Vani said...

Lovely write-up, Asha! I esp loved that you remembered your old cook and how he has affected the way you look at food. Very nice!
Thank you for my very first tag!! This is so exciting! I'm looking forward to publishing it :-)

Anonymous said...

Where? Where did I write that you are from Andhra? Of course I know you are from Karnataka..hehehehe...


Keshi said...

very interesting tag! :)


Twisted DNA said...

An apt tag for you and you did it wonderfully. Never heard about that "taka tak" thing. I hope I will see it in the next wedding I am attending in December

sra said...

Thanks Asha, for the other meme. I had fun writing it.

FH said...

Oh! Thank you Twisted DNA!:)
For Taka Tak info check here,
I have never seen it myself,but heard that in some Mumbai and Delhi weddings,they are hiring those Taka Tak cooks!:)

You are welcome,sra!:))

Keshi!I know you are back,tried to leave a comment 3 times but it didn't accept for some reason!! Will try today!Welcome back,beautiful Tulips!!:))

FH said...

HA HA!! Inji Pennu!:D
Now you know!! See ,you got visit me often,or else you will not be a 'nalla pennu'!!:D:D:D Hope that came out right!:))
Our farm is near Koyambattur border,know a little Tamil too!

Thanks Vani for taking up the tag!! It will fun and I am looking forward to reading your's!!

Thanks priya for taking time to read it!!:)

FH said...

You are welcome Divya! I am sure you guys will do fabulously with two pretty heads thinking together!!:))
I can't wait to read it!!

Thanks Chandrika! I know,right!! Only in India, you are dragged out of your home along with your gadget and demanded "now bake me a cake ,girl"!!:D:D:D
They are all sooo sweet, my peeps!!

Prema Sundar said...

I enjoyed reading ur meme as u had enjoyed writing it.It was lovely..
I have also not heard abt 'tak tak' . wish somebody invites me for a wedding with Tak tak.

Anonymous said...

Hi Asha,

Thats a lovely writeup. And the TAKA TAK made my mouth water...want to try it out sometime :)

Nee said...

I think my previous comment disappeared...hmm!
Oh well - I gotta say, LOVED your description of Taka-tak. Had never heard of it before!

Gattina Cheung said...

Now you reminding me about baking powder, in the beginning ( you know novice seems not liking to follow recipe...), I didn't trust the magic power of baking powder, oh my cakes were terrible!
Martha... I kinda like her :)

Anonymous said...

Nice writeup. Dakshin is my favorite cookbook, I'm constantly borrowing from the library. "All 17 states"? India has more than that.

FH said...

Vidya!!A big OOPS!!Been away from India toooo long!!:D I edited out 17,but still don't know how many!! Tell me, plz!!:)) and thanks!!

Hi and welcome, Gattina!! My cakes some how were alright at that time!!:))
'Kinda Like her' is rt!:D:D Thanks and come back this weekend,planning a good post!!

Nee! I lost John's comment too, I dunno what the heck is happening! Taka Tak can made with veggies too! You will love it!
If 'The Boy'doesn't start eating fruit,put him in there and Taka Tak!!:D:D ;)

FH said...

Hi Nayan! welcome to my blog!! It was new to me too! A British food writer Pat Chapman wrote abt it and I tried it! Tasty and fun!!

Thanks Prema! Check out Ashwini's post 'Tawa Paneer',that's what it is!!I was thrilled to see it,I don't have to post it now!!:))

Anonymous said...

Wonderful responses! I enjoyed reading every one of them! I'm glad you participated!


Nee said...

ROTFL - I've been giving The Boy evil looks and going Taka tak, Taka tak! He's going to go hide his head in shame now!

FH said...

Paz!! Welcome to my blog and thank you!!I really enjoyed remembering all those!! That was fun!

Nee! me too rotfl!! Throw some No! LOT of fruits along with him too! Oh boy! One of these days, he is going to block me from your site!:))

Anonymous said...

There is a Takatak fast food chain in Bangalore from the stables of Royal Orchid Group.

FH said...

Hi Kishore! That's a good info abt Taka Tak joint! I thought it happens only in Bombay and Delhi weddings!! B'lore has become very cool!Away from India for too long!!Thanks!!:)

Anonymous said...

Lovely write up, Asha....enjoyed reading it.

FH said...

Thanks for taking time to read it, Jaya!!

mommyof2 said...

First food tag I have ever read:-) very nice:-)

Hubby is not fond of dishes with Indian masalas so I kindda try to stay away from food blogs. I personally love food very much and can’t hold myself back from trying out new recipes. Now I can start my hobby as I can cook for the kids;-) Will be a regular on ur blog:-)

FH said...

Actually this is the 4th food tag I did!:D:D It is pure fun!

There are soups in my posts which are not spicy at all 'Soups Galore' and great for the kids!Try them if you like and yes! do come back! Nice to know you!:)