2016 Week 39 Update

That’s it, I just give up….for the moment al least! When I wrote my weekly update post last week, I was full of anticipation regarding the interview I had done the previous week. I was supposed to hear from them regarding the next round of interviews latest by last Monday and I got ghosted again! I waited till around Thursday and when I did not hear back, I texted the person who interviewed me, followed by an email to the same individual. I also (inadvertently) sent him a LinkedIn request, which he accepted over the weekend! I really don’t know what to make of this? If they have decided not to proceed with my candidature (and as an employer, they are fully within their right to choose the best fit for their organisation), but it left a slightly bad taste when this person did not choose to respond to either my text message or email. A one liner saying they were not considering me would have sufficed. Anyway, I am going to write this away too and probably just reach out to this individual again maybe at the end of this week or next, but I will not hold any hopes. I am also not going to apply anywhere else till I am back in December, no point in going for any interviews now, right?

This was pretty much my week this week…..I am super excited about my India trip and the poonal and it’s all systems go in our home, preparing for the function. But before that, we need to finish exams and then there’s Navratri and then Diwali to look forward to….

Can’t believe that September is also coming to an end soon…

Hope everyone has a great week….

Secondary 1 Week 39 Update

The children are busy in school completing the syllabus for the year before exams start. Both’s exams start in the middle next week and will go on till sometime in the middle of October. Here, exams tend to drag with multiple days between exams. They will have regular school during non-exam days. The last day of school is the end of October, just before Diwali.

They also got the results of their Hindi exams yesterday and results were as expected- GG did ok but not as well as she did in the mid-term exams, but BB failed as usual, spectacularly in fact! I really need to take him into hand and start frol basics. Hopefully this time around, he will take things a lot more seriously.

Ok, need to get them to study, so happy Sunday folks!!

In My Hands Today…

Honour – Elif Shafak 

17270655An honor killing shatters and transforms the lives of Turkish immigrants in 1970s London

Internationally bestselling Turkish author Elif Shafak’s new novel is a dramatic tale of families, love, and misunderstandings that follows the destinies of twin sisters born in a Kurdish village. While Jamila stays to become a midwife, Pembe follows her Turkish husband, Adem, to London, where they hope to make new lives for themselves and their children.

In London, they face a choice: stay loyal to the old traditions or try their best to fit in. After Adem abandons his family, Iskender, the eldest son, must step in and become the one who will not let any shame come to the family name. And when Pembe begins a chaste affair with a man named Elias, Iskender will discover that you could love someone with all your heart and yet be ready to hurt them.

Recipe: Avial

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One of the eponymous dishes which are common across South India, Avial is one of my favourite dishes. I remember when my mum used to make this dish, I would eat it the whole day, so much that what was supposed to be enough for both meals, would finish by the time we had lunch!

Both GG & BB love it as much as I do, S is quite indifferent to it. When S started working with us, she also started to love it and if we go a couple of months without making it, she will remind me to make it soon.

This dish is quite ancient and is said to be invented by Bhima, the second Pandava brother during their year in exile. Most vegetables used to make Avial are what we call local (Indian) vegetables. Some ‘English’ vegetables like potato, carrots, beans and peas are also used. Other vegetables like Yellow/Orange pumpkin, white pumpkin, drumstick, snake gourd, yam, raw banana are also used. You can use all of these or some, depending on what you have at home. The dish can also be made thick or thin – thick if you are not planning to eat it mixed with rice (like a gravy) or thin if this will be mixed with rice. In my home, if we make Avial, we don’t usually make anything else since it has all vegetables in it, we eat it with rice and some crisps.

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Avial

Ingredients:

  • 2 carrots, chopped lengthwise in 2 inch sticks
  • 2 potatoes, chopped lengthwise in 2 inch sticks
  • 2 raw bananas, chopped lengthwise in 2 inch sticks
  • 1/4 piece of yellow pumpkin, chopped lengthwise in 2 inch sticks
  • 7-8 beans, chopped 2 inch
  • 2 drumsticks, chopped in 2 inch sticks
  • 1 snake gourd, chopped lengthwise in 2 inch sticks
  • 1 cup yoghurt, beaten
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • salt to taste
  • 3-4 curry leaves (optional)
  • 1 tsp coconut oil (optional)

To be ground into a paste

  • 2 tsps cumin seeds
  • 6-8 green chillies
  • 1 cup grated coconut
  • 1/2 cup yoghurt

Method:

  • In a deep bottomed pan, add all the chopped vegetables and cook them with very little water and the turmeric powder and 1 tsp salt. Cook till the vegetables are al-dente, they should be still firm to touch.
  • While the vegetables are cooking, grind the coconut, chillies and cumin seeds, using the yoghurt as moisture. Grind the coconut till it is very fine.
  • Once the vegetables are cooked, add the coconut mixture to the vegetables. Stir well and add salt to taste.
  • From the remaining yoghurt, add as much yoghurt as you need to make it as thick as you need. If you need to make the avial thick, add very little yoghurt and more if you want to make the gravy watery.
  • When the avial comes to a nice rolling boil, add the coconut oil and curry leaves (if using) and switch off the gas. Cover the dish with a plate or cover to keep the fragrance of the curry leaves and oil.
  • Serve hot with rice and some crisps or papad.

Enjoy…..

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In My Hands Today…

China Dolls – Lisa See

18404427In 1938, Ruby, Helen and Grace, three girls from very different backgrounds, find themselves competing at the same audition for showgirl roles at San Francisco’s exclusive “Oriental” nightclub, the Forbidden City. Grace, an American-born Chinese girl has fled the Midwest and an abusive father. Helen is from a Chinese family who have deep roots in San Francisco’s Chinatown. And, as both her friends know, Ruby is Japanese passing as Chinese. At times their differences are pronounced, but the girls grow to depend on one another in order to fulfill their individual dreams. Then, everything changes in a heartbeat with the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Suddenly the government is sending innocent Japanese to internment camps under suspicion, and Ruby is one of them. But which of her friends betrayed her?