Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Being Local - 2

The Chaiwali at the Kuntala Waterfalls, Nirmal. Be there water in the falls or not, there is always tea in her kettle for the visitors. 

'Being Local' is a series where I can post the different characters who I feel is interesting enough to have a mention. You can find others in the series here.
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Sunday, August 31, 2014

Being Local - 1

A young monk at Hemis Monastery who was shy enough to pose for a picture. Ultimately agreed to pose for a photo persuaded by his senior in the picture behind.

Since I have been travelling quite a lot and taking pictures of locals, I decided to start a series named 'Being Local', where I can post the different characters who I feel is interesting enough to have a mention.
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Saturday, August 23, 2014

Nirmal - Home for Toy and Art Industry

Nirmal is situated in the Adilabad district of the newly formed state of Telengana.

It is merely 218 kms from Hyderabad and yet there are not many people who knows that Nirmal is famous for Toys and Paintings. Staying in Hyderabad for almost about 7 years now, I recently came to know the specialty and had started growing interest to visit the place - primarily to visit the Toys workshop.

Upon reaching there and talking to various people in the Hotel where we stayed, we came to know that there is a single store accompanied by the workshop. Read from a old Hindu article that after Independence when the artisans were undergoing a bad phase, Government came to their rescue and formed a society called The Nirmal Toys and Arts Industries Cooperative Society Ltd. in 1955.

Visitors come here to purchase but most of these toys are sold in different parts of the country and even exported abroad. This is a small scale industry which has high potential to be popularized. The toys are made up of a unique tender wood called 'Poniki Wood'. The price of the toys also seemed to be moderate enough.



Small Video of the Workshop:


It is sad that the Government has not promoted this place for Tourism. If a single store can make a place famous, it definitely has a lot of potential which can be explored to make this into a large scale industry. There are also other attractions (mainly Waterfalls, sanctuaries, temples etc.) which can be centered from Nirmal.

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Sunday, July 20, 2014

Long Drive to Bidar from Hyderabad

I was pretty excited as this was the first long drive with my son. Prior to this, I had only gone to Vikarabad which was a mere 70 km from Hyderabad. Bidar, about 115 km from Hyderabad is famous for the historical significance. It was ruled by the Bahmani kings and hence remains of the kingdom still exists here. One of the main attractions being Bidar Fort.

The road to Zaheerabad is moderate, some places it is pretty good while in other places it is not that great. Entry from Zaheerabad to Bidar was closed and hence we had to take the bypass which was not very pleasing though.

Gumbaz Darwaza

Gumbaz Darwaza: The place fort complex could be entered from the city through two main gates on the south eastern side by a zig-zag passage and well protected gateways. The Sharza Darwaza and Gumbaz Darwaza are main entrance gates to palace complex.

 Tarkash Mahal

Entering the fort area, one can see the beautifully decorated garden with Tarkash Mahal and Solah Khamba Mosque. Tarkash Mahal is said to be built for a Turkish wife of one of the Bahmani kings. Entry to the Mahal is now restricted for public.

Solah Khamba Mosque

Solah Khamba Mosque is said to the oldest Islamic building in Bidar and one of the largest mosques in India. As the name states it is derived from the sixteen pillars (or Khamba) in the middle portion of the Prayer Hall. Entry to this is also restricted to the public now.

Old Fort entrance

Diwan-I-am and Diwan-I-Khass are present inside the Old Fort entrance.

Leaving Bidar Fort, other areas of attraction in Bidar includes Jharani Narasimha Cave Temple, Nanak Jhira Sahib, Bahamani Tombs etc

Specialty of Jharani Narasimha Cave Temple is that in order to view the idol of Lord Narasimha, you will have to go through waist deep cave water for about 300 hundred meters.There are lots of stories connected with the temple.

Nanak Jhira Sahib

Nanak Jhira Sahib is a historical Sikh shrine. This is very popular and hundreds of devotees come here every year during Guru Nanak Jayanti. The Gurudwara stands beside a sweet water fountain carrying stories of how Guru Nanak gave relief to the people of Bidar who were suffering from the scarcity of water. A small Amrit–Kund is constructed in white marble and this accumulates the water flowing from this fountain.

Closed Tomb Besides Gurudwara

After spending around an hour or so, we started our way back as it was almost getting dark and also started to drizzle.

Below is a wonderful documentary from Karnataka Tourism about Bidar.

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Sunday, June 29, 2014

Egg Paneer

Thanks to my wife for this recipe. One day morning she woke up with an idea in mind to prepare something new and ultimately came up with the one below. Believe me or not this tasted wonderful, though the preparation is not very common.

  1. Paneer - 1 Packet
  2. Onion - 1 Big
  3. Tomato Ketchup
  4. Corn Flour - 3-4 tb Spoon
  5. Egg 2 pc.
  6. Black Pepper
  7. Jeera Dust
  8. Ginger Garlic paste
  9. Turmeric
  10. Salt 
  11. Sugar
  12. Sunflower Oil
  1. Finely chop the Onion.
  2. Pour small amount of oil and fry with chopped onions with a spoon of sugar.
  3. Add Tomato Ketchup once the onions are fried.
  4. Add small portion of Ginger Garlic paste, Turmeric and Jeera Dust. 
  5. Stir and fry for some time in low heat till it becomes sticky.
  6. Pour the Gravy in another vessel.
  7. Cut the Paneer into small pieces.
  8. Crack 2 eggs on top.
  9. Add 3-4 Tablespoon Corn flour to the mix.
  10. Add Black pepper and Salt according to your taste.
  11. Stir it and mix it thoroughly.
  12. Pour Sunflower Oil in a Non-Sticky Pan and add the Paneer mix.
  13. Fry it for around 5 mins. Constantly stir to avoid sticking.
  14. Pour the Gravy on top of the cooked Paneer.
  15. Pour 1 cup water and boil it for around 2 mins in medium heat.
And your Egg Paneer is ready. You can serve it with both Rice or Rooti.

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