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Showing posts from July, 2016

Whole roast chicken in an air fryer

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It seems like an eon since I last wrote about food. I am back to my blog after a long hiatus and I am still hobbling around a bit, maybe it will take some time for me to get back my writing mojo.
To be honest, I have not been experimenting much with food lately. Have just been cooking normal stuff, barring a few twists here and there.
And then, I got a new appliance as a housewarming gift the other day. The current hot pick of the season – the air fryer! Everywhere I turned to, I saw people cooking with the air fryer and exclaiming what a superb boon it was to the kitchen. I made a wry face and said “Oh yeah?” I had taken it to be another new cooking fad, which would soon be forgotten in a few months. I mean, I hardly cook anything in my microwave oven, except thawing/heating food and making the random chocolate mug cake for my son. In comparison, I use my conventional oven (OTG) much frequently.
So, when I opened the carton that arrived at my home and found the air fryer there, I did n…

Incredible Hampi Part 2: Birding in Hampi

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“Hampi is a wonderland.”
It took me 6 years to visit Hampi and realize this fact, although it was one of the top places people referred to when you asked anyone for interesting weekend getaways from Bangalore.
Hampi, till I visited it, represented an image of temples and monuments drowning in a deluge of visitors. The thought of being jostled around while angling for a better view did not appeal to me much. And therefore, I avoided the place.
Circa 2015, one fateful rainy day in October, I visited Hampi. Then, I visited it again in sunny December (2015).
Read Part 1 here.
Irrepressibly, I had fallen head over heels in love with the place.
While Hampi is predominantly known for its glorious ruins, and rightly so, I was equally impressed with the sheer variety of avian species this region harboured. Its stark, arid, boulder-strewn landscape hid amidst itself some of the most beautiful and colourful birds that I had come across. Of course, it is difficult to observe them from close quarters…

Incredible Hampi Part 1: Daroji Bear Sanctuary

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Indian Sloth Bear
The vermillion red sun slid down behind the hills as I wiped the grime off my face, my hair in deep tangles, a happy grin spreading from ear to ear.


“You look like the Cheshire Cat,” the husband observed.
I was visiting the world heritage site of Hampi and the adjoining Daroji Bear Sanctuary, some 15 kms from Hampi, and I had reason enough to behave like the cat from Alice’s wonderland.
The stark landscape of Hampi, with its exquisite ruins and artfully scattered boulders, precariously balancing at implausible angles, had left me breathless with awe. It held me absolutely spellbound and I realized that I would not find solace till I made another visit to this beautiful land.
I had visited Hampi the first time in early October 2015, the monsoons having receded somewhat and the sun beginning to show its might. The trip was to be a short one, primarily for the purpose of providing solace to my harried self by gazing soulfully at the ruins of Hampi. For the first time, bird…