Thursday, August 16, 2007

Anita's Zafrani Zamudod for Independence day


As a country India is now 60 years old, and as much as Aug 15 makes one feel all fuzzy and patriotic, and as much as the Indian economy has reached new heights, I feel as a country it has a long way to go. I know I might create outcry amongst some readers but lets face the fact that only looking at the positives and self praise in vanity never improves any country.

Yes, we have an amazing culinary cuisine and so much variety in amongst each state and tribe. Yes, we have an old rich heritage and culture in our attire. Yes, we have a myriad of languages, the dialect changing every 100kms they say; yes, we have timeless age old monuments and a beautiful natural landscape. It is said that when Alexander the great came to invade India and upon seeing the land he said "Firdozba wrozba zaminast, aminastu aminastu aminastu", which means, If there is a heaven on earth, it is here, here, here ..

Of all the problems India faces, lets look at the simple but mammoth task (or more the attitude) of keeping the Indian environment, countryside, landscape and monuments clean and pollution free. I remember one of our ex-president (the honourable APJ Abdul Kalam's) many speeches in which he has said many times that the same Indians when travelling abroad, follow all rules to keep the foreign lands clean, but then why can't those same indians and indians in india keep their environment clean...

to site a few examples that I have seen with my own two eyes and can remember rite now...

- the horrible habit of men (and horridly women) of spitting any and everywhere (especially after having pan) especially to my dismay on walls of monuments. For God's sake the saliva produced in our mouths needs to be swallowed to aid our digestion. (And if its phlegm that these people are trying to get rid, they better get medication for throat irritation.)

- while travelling in an bicycle rickshaw, I have seen so many times, a lot of women when they sweep their houses, they leave the heap of grit 5m from their house, because it seems after that, its not their problem, what happens to the rubbish?

- the first time I went on a tour of the holy places, vrindavan, mathura and govardhan parbat, I found milk sellers offering milk for the deities and prasadam near open sewage drains with millions of flies around, and nobody cared. Sellers were selling, devotees were buying milk for Krishna, and others drinking. I know I left the place disgusted and sad, that we couldnt even offer the Gods some clean milk. We easily forgot that cleanliness is next to godliness.

- As a child, whenever we went on long journeys in buses, people would peel bananas and eat chips and throw the peels and packets out of the windows to my shock and horror. Worst, they would stare at me for 'collecting' my rubbish with me (to throw away later).

- The first time (after marriage), I told my husband's cousins that I wanted to see chowpati beach and the gateway of India, and they told me its quite polluted. Hey its a beach, and the gateway is a monument, suerly it wasnt that bad. But sadly it was, there was litter around the monument, and all over the beach beyond normal litter (you know what I mean). It was so sad.

There are so many of these petty incidences i cant even remember. If I could sit an think of them, they would fill up several posts. And we so easily forget that its these little things that add up and make the country look so filthy. Ive always complained to my parents, aunts and uncles about this, and I always get told that because the country has such a large population, that this is inevitable. But my argument is, the more people we have the more hands we have to clean up... I dont know if we will ever see a cleaner India, a cleaner countryside, with the current trend. If they were clean, we wouldnt have all these bollywood movies going abroad to shoot, as if we dont have great locations to shoot in India. As India celebrates 60 long years of independence, lets all create awareness that we need to clean up the country and bring down the pollution levels. This is my message to all this year. (Which makes me think its late for Meeta's Earth food theme for her monthly mingle, oh well, see the lovely round up here)


Coming to the recipe... I made this weekend and in honour of independence day. When I saw this at A Mad Tea Party. i was like wow, I just have to try this. Even though the milk didnt zamufy (set) completely after keeping it for 8 hours and the zamudod was watery (maybe the weather was too cold), the taste was heveanly. Next time I will add more curds so that the yoghurt is set all the way through... check out the recipe here. I enjoyed making this so much, that my mum and I made a whole batch of extra fresh plain yogurt too, which led to the temptation of making shrikhand, hmm one temptation leading to another (watch out for it in one of the future posts).

27 comments:

Cinnamon said...

Though it did not zamufy :) liked the word!! It looks very delicious indeed... and the pics are just lovely!! I liked the cups :)

Srivalli said...

lovely dish...looks good....am sure anita must be feeling great...

Srivalli
www.cooking4allseasons.blogspot.com

sra said...

Rachna, good points you've raised in your post. And your photos are very inviting.

Nandita said...

Rachna,
Lovely effort, the exotic name itself inspires us to try it out...you are right about the weather, its easy to set yogurt year round in India so we kinda take it for granted :0

Sia said...

i love the new look rachna... very thoughful post and i am with u. happy I-day dear and those small clay pots are adorable

Coffee said...

Rachna, you can try to warm it on low for 10-20 secs in the microwave. and then let it stay in the closed microwave for a few hours...... it should set. I try this method for setting curd sometimes. Hope this helps. :)

Rachna said...

cinnamon - haa i cudnt find another apt word than zamufy :)

srivalli - i hope so too :)

sra - thank u

nandita - yeah indian curds are the yummiest! good thing its spring in southern africa and we can zamufy curds again

sia - thank u thank u

coffee - ok... great idea, will try this

Asha said...

I would love to have those pots,so cute.In B'lore , they bake Chicken in these.So tender and yummy!:)
Great post Rachna.

Poonam said...

These look just great!

Anita said...

Ah ha - the pretty kulhads with zamudod!

Yes, miles to go before we rest...Happy Independence Day!

TBC said...

Oh! I love these pics. Yogurt has never looked so good before!

Richa said...

that first pic is such a relief in this heat :) thuadde kulhad bot pasand aye :) good tips, coffee!

MACO Caribbean Magazines said...
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Sharmi said...

the milk looks lovely in those kullhads. I too collect all the trash and drop them in the trash can while in India. I feel real bad when I think of people who dont have self consciousness for their country.

musical said...

Hey Rachna,

Lovely post and pretty pictures :). Ooh, those kulhads looks lovely :-D.

I agree, many people back home still do not make any effort to keep the surroundings clean.....

Meeta said...

Lovely post and a great dish. Wishing you a Happy I-day!!

Cynthia said...

I'm a day late... Happy Independence. Have I ever told you what a beautfil blog you have - the colour, design etc.

bee said...

just gorgeous. simmmbly superb, as we mallus say.

Rachna said...

asha - yes i fell in love with these kulhads

poonam - thank u

anita - yes the whole post is in yur honour

tbc - yu know!!

richa - thank u

sharmi,musical - i wish we cud all think like this

meeta - thank u, same to u

cynthia, awww thank u for such a sweet compliment

bee - thangew, thangew ... as a converted mallu like me wud say :D

evolvingtastes said...

Hi, so many interesting things on your blog. Will be back for more, especially some recipes.

Lovely post.. and pots too. Where did you get those pots?

Sukanya Ramkumar said...

Lovely Independence day recipe....Lovely presentation.... Love them...

Rachna said...

evolving tastes - you are most welcome... these pots are called kulhad and got them at a normal kitchen shop in mumbai

sukanya - thank u

evolvingtastes said...

Ah, thanks. So you bought them in India. Putting it on my list for whenever I go home (as in, halfway across the world) next.

Rachna said...

evolving..actually the first time I saw them was at an aunt's house in delhi, then I bragged about it to my sis-I-L, and she found them in mumbai and sent them over to me... was so thrilled... shud i ask her the shop name???

Dipti said...
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Dipti said...

Hi Rachna,can u please tell me the address from where ur sister got khullads, thanks a lot, dipti.

Rachna said...

Dipti, hope you got my mail