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Jadoo chal gaya..

June 12, 2013
Variety of dishes offered by ITC

Are you sure, you will be able to do it”,he asked.

Just relax and be here on time. I will manage it. Now I am keeping the phone , else I will not be able to do anything”  I said showing more confidence than I felt.

Ya see you in five hours. Dekh agar Mummy maan gayi na tu hi kuch ho sakta hai. And my mother is the best cook in the world. So getting food from outside and passing it off as yours will not work.” he said.

I know,now let me do my work. I know that if your mother does not like my cooking or me then it’s time to say goodbye. Eloping, Getting married without parents blessing ,is too filmi and not our cup of tea. Okay see you bye” I said as I cut the connection.

Few hours to cook a good meal, what can I do? I called my saviour, my mother (anyway I had to update her of the situation) My parents had liked Swayam when they had visited office, she thought that we liked each other, more than the friend-shriend type. Other than he being Bengali and I being Punjabi he fit into the image of the groom that they had for me.  After throwing the idea at us, and not facing any rejection they sent my bio-data to his parents. It was in response to the bio-data that his mother was coming. I had met them earlier, when they had come to visit in office but Tab kisko maloom tha ki yeh din dekhna padega.(Then who knew I had to see this day)

My mother had taught me basic food items like dal-chwaal, aloo ki subzi, chola,paav-bhaji. She had also sent me to stitching, embroidery classes so that  sasural waale yeh nahin kahein ki maa ne kuch shikhaya nahin. (inlaws don’t say that mother has not taught her)I rang her and she picked on the first ring (as if she was waiting for my call).

Kya hua”, she asked. I updated her. “So you have to cook some great dishes. I cannot come and help you. “ I sighed “Mummy please help me…” “Dost hi hai na..okay jokes apart, Yesterday Mrs Gupta was talking about the ITC gourmet food, her husband thought she had ordered from some 5 star hotel. ” replied my mother. “Mummy you are going off track what does Mrs Gupta has to do with my predicament?” I was getting worked up. “Le jayenge le jayenge dilwale dulhaniya..Getting serious Beta it’s not Mrs Gupta but ITC Gourmet food that has everything to do with your so called predicament.”

She explained, ITC’s Kitchens of India has brought out  life age-old Indian dishes from across the country, from the far-flung regions of the northwest frontier to the coastal regions of the south,  crafted by the Master Chefs of ITC’s hotel in convenient ready to eat packs.  From exotic vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes, to authentic Biryanis and delicious halwas. “So “, she continued, “Using it you can dish out the three course meal. So you rush to the Mall near your house and pick up what you like and cook it. This will also give you ample time to clean the house. Get some flowers, use those candles that I had given you. Please don’t use plastic plates. Use the plates, the blue and orange flowers one. ” I had been saved, “Thanks Ma, you are the best Mom in the world….Ma ma I’ll talk to you later..”, I said. “Haan haan matlabi yaar kiske khaya piye aur khsike. (selfish friend eat and go) Beta..Best of Luck and I love you“, said Ma.

I was like a women on mission. I rushed to the shop and asked for the ready to eat shelf. There I saw sitting on the shelf so many varieties from ITC Kitchen of India. My mother was bang on, Kitchens of India specializes in bringing to life age-old Indian dishes from across the country crafted by the Master Chefs of ITC’s hotels, following the traditional methods of preparations and made available to mortal like us in convenient shelf stable Ready-to-Eat packs. ITC Master Chefs are perfectionists and they recreate the forgotten taste of authentic Indian cuisine, by following age old recipes that demand only the freshest ingredients and precise techniques.

My eyes got bigger and bigger as I read the labels legendary Dal Bukhara, the succulent Mirch ka Salan and  ever-revered Paneer Malai,  Mughlai Paneer and Paneer Darbari, the vegetarian dishes rich in every ingredient that makes for a perfect dining experience. For non vegetarians, Culinary delights like Chicken Chettinad, Chicken Darbari, Malabari Chicken Stew and Murgh Methi were also there. For dessert I had choice of  uniquely packaged range of royal desserts like   Jodhpuri Moong Dal Halwa and Hazoori Petha Halwa,a perfect way to turn any occasion into a celebration.

Variety of dishes offered by ITC

Variety of dishes offered by ITC

I also saw then , a delectable assortment of pre-made gravies by the ITC Master Chefs. All you needed to to surprise your family with an impeccable meal that is nothing short of perfection was to add meat or vegetables and cook for a few minutes.   The range includes mixes for vegetarian dishes like Paneer Makhani, Vegetable Biryani and for non-vegetarian dishes  such as Butter Chicken, Chicken Curry, Mutton Kolhapuri and Hyderabadi Chicken Biryani.

Sauces and Chutneys

Sauces and Chutneys

I was confused? What to pick up? I checked the labels again, closed my eyes, thinking about them and picked up the picture of what came to my mind first and rushed home.

By that time Sangvi, my roommate was also back from office. She was hungry so I made for her Paav bhaji. A mouthwatering dish of lightly spiced, mashed fresh vegetables simmered in butter over a sizzling hot tava (pan). So yummy, “You have surpassed yourself, hey aaj kya dala hai paav bhaji mein.(what have you added) it’s the yummiest paav bhaji I have eated”” It’s all magic of ITC gourmet chefs”, I said heavily relieved, for if a foodie like her , who is against the ready to eat packs is singing praises then there is chance that I can impress Swayam’s mother.

“Jaldi kha aur meri help kar ghar thik karne main”, I told Sangvi.Madam aapki paav bhaji ne tu humme aapko ghulam bana diya..bolo tu swayam ki mummy ko utha ke le aaye,” (have become your slave after eating paav-bhaji, if you order we can kidnao Swayam’s mother) replied Sangvi. ‘Uttahiye par yeh bedsheet”, I laughed. We put on the FM and started arranging the room , decided to arrange the drawing room. Brought the mattress from the room, put in the new bedsheet threw some cushions on it. On one corner put the Rajni gandha flowers(swayam had mentioned his mother liked it), put the candles in corners.  “Hey this looks great..we shall keep it like that” said Sangvi.

Then we attacked the kitchen.

For starters we decided to use Samosa with tamarind chutney,

For main course:, Dal Bukhara, Hyderabadi Korma and Delhi Dum Aloo with Basmati Rice Pilaf (Kashmiri) Mango Chutney

For desserts : Jodhpuri Moong Dal Halwa

Just when we thought we were done Ma called “Keep the bathroom clean..you know lady ki pehchaan uske kitchen aur bathroom se ho jati hai..”

Before we knew it was time to get ready. I was tried but happy. “Thik lag rahi hoon na,” I asked Sangvi  Dot at 7:30 p.m bell rang. Swayam was here with his mother. I opened the door and there was Swayam, Swayam’s mother with his sister,Simi, and father too. “Surprise”said Swayam’s father, “We didn’t want to miss the event of the century!”. “Namaste aunty, uncle” I stuttered. Swayam looked at me as if saying “I couldn’t help” . She walked in, looked around, smiled and asked “Can I use your bathroom ” , Sangvi burst out laughing. “Yes of course Aunty” she took her to the toilet(God bless ma). “So Which book are you reading?”, asked Uncle.

The evening then passed easily, with questions, jokes, songs(God bless Simi).  And then time flew and we realised we had finished the dessert. Swayam smiled at me, his eyes saying All is well. The food was yummy, I really liked Dum Aloo,”quipped Uncle, “After ages we had it,remember we had it in the dinner hosted by your  foreign returned cousin in some fancy restaurant?” Simi, remarked “Mango chutney was awesome, Nani ki yaad aa gayi, you must have got it from home ““Yes it was tasty, Did Swayam tell you about  my preference for Moong Dal Halwa. So where did you get the food from.”asked Aunty. “We made is at home”she raised her eyebrow,”with the help of ITC chefs“. Aunty remarked,” So you know some chef who works in ITC” “. I replied “No aunty We made it ourselves using ITC gourmet dishes”.

Sangvi got some packets from inside, Swayam’s sister  hugged me “Really, you are angel,mummy is after me to learn cooking, Ab life assan ho gayi hai.” I replied “Yes ITC Kitchens of  India has really made life easy. Now we can Indulge in exquisite Indian cuisine at home” Aunty asked “Mehnga hoga?”  “ Jodhpur daal halwa was Rs 110 for a packet, other are also priced similarly“As Swayam passed her the packet I replied “Acha show me the packets“, she asked. She liked the pre-made gravies, Simi raved about the chutneys. “Simi you can take  these..”, I said . “Okay but on one condition, Shadi mein bhi khana ITC Kitchens of India se hi hona chahiye, Bhabhi ! ‘ She said. We burst out laughing as Aunty taking out a box called me “Yeh SwayamKi Dadi ne uski bahu ke liye rakha tha.” As I went towards her, Swayam said “Jadoo chal gaya..”, to which I said “Haan ITC ke Kitchens of India ka”.

This is entry for Indiblogger Contest My Weekend Party with Gourmet Food. To know more about ITC Gourmet range you can explore Kitchens of India.

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From → Women Issues

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