Vani’s Musings

Archive for April 2007

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Anisutide Yaako Indu, Neene Ne Nannavalendu
Mayada Lokadinda, Nanagaage Bandavalendu
Aaha Yenta Madhura Yaatane

Kollu Hudugi Omme Nanna, Haage Summane 
 

|| Anisutide Yaako Indu 

Suriyuva Sooneyu Sooside Ninnade Parimala
Innyara Kanasalu Neenu Hoodare TaLamala
Poorna Chandira Rajaa Haakida Ninnaya Mogavanu Kanda Kshana
Naa Khaidi Neene Seremane
Tappi Nanna Appiko Omme Haage Summane 

 || Anisutide Yaako Indu 

Tutigala Hoovali AaDada Matina Sihi Ide
Manasina Putadali Kevala Ninnade Sahi Ide
Haneyali Bareyada Nenna Hesara Hrudayadi Naane Koradiruve
NinagunTe Idara Kalpane
Nanna Hesara Kooge Omme, Haage Summane

 Anisutide Yaako Indu, Neene Ne Nannavalendu
Mayada Lokadinda, Nanagaage Bandavalendu
Aaha Yenta Madhura Yaatane
Kollu Hudugi Omme Nanna, Haage Summane
Anisutide Yaako Indu………..

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I am simply bowled by this song……Loved the lyrics, and so thought of sharing them.

Summer is here, bringing with it oppressive heat, oodles of sweat, sudden thunderstorms…………. and mangoes. An Annual treat, mango is aptly named the king of fruits. There are, I guess, very few who wouldn’t love mangoes.

 I, for one, am particularly partial to the Benisha, or Bengenapalli variety.  

 A Mango Tree, like the coconut tree has many uses. Its fruits are consumed, so are raw mangoes. It goes without saying that no Hindu religious event is complete without the “Thoran” and “Kalash”, both of which are conspicuous by the presence of mango leaves. The wood from the tree is used for furniture, therefore earning the very apt name of “Kalpavriksha”. 

The sight of juicy, yellow-gold mangoes is definitely a sight for sore eyes. And the aroma! No amount of words can describe that heavenly aroma of mangoes…I love visiting the Mango market every year. 

Here is a small list of mango varieties grown in India.  

States -Varieties 

Ø      Andhra Pradesh: Bengenapalli, Bangalora,Cherukurasam, Himayuddin, Suvarnarekha

Ø      Bihar: Bombai, Langra, Fazri, Himsagar, Kishen Bhog, Sukul, Bathua

Ø      Goa: Fernandin, Mankurad, Alphonso

Ø      Gujarat: Alphonso, Kesar, Rajapuri, Vanraj

Ø      Haryana: Dashehari, Langra, Bombay Green

Ø      Karnataka: Alphonso, Bangalora, Mulgoa, Neelum, Pairi

Ø      Kerala: Mundappa, Olour, Pairi

Ø      Madhya Pradesh:  Alphonso, Bombai, Langra and mostly seedling types

Ø      Maharashtra: Alphonso, Kesar, Mankurad, Mulgoa, Pairi

Ø      Orissa: Baneshan, Langra, Neelum, Suvarnarekha and mostly seedling types

Ø      Punjab: Dashehari, Langra, Chausa

Ø      Tamil Nadu: Banganpalli, Bangalora, Neelum, Rumani, Mulgoa

Ø      Uttar Pradesh: Bombay Green, Dashehari, Fajri, Langra, Safeda Lucknow, Chausa

Ø      West Bengal: Bombai, Himsagar, Kishan Bhog, Langra   

Mango season is also synonymous with pickles, my Ajji makes different varieties of mango pickles to be stored for the whole year, and most important among Ajji’s pickles is the Avakkayi, a foodie’s delight.  Nothing short of pure bliss to mix hot rice and ghee and Avakkayi or Thokku…. but one must be careful about the amount of pickle mixed, as it is potent enough to sent tongues on fire and if caught unawares, one might need a fire brigade to cool the burning tongue. 

In the Seaside districts and Malnad Region, another variety of Pickles is common, and that is the Maavina Midi Pickles, which is prepared by soaking the small raw variety in salt water and enough red chilly powder.  

 Mango season also means less usage of tamarind in the kitchen. After the raw mango is used for preparations like Mango Rice or Mango Dal or Thokku, the kernel is retained and added to the Rasam to impart sourness to the dish. Apart from this, raw mangoes are also dried and powdered to make “Aamchoor” which is used for the same purpose.  

Each region has developed its own taste of savoring mangoes. Some like it cut into pieces, some like the juicy variety. Poori-Aamras is a very famous combo in Maharashtra, just like eating a juicy mango with curd rice in many parts of Karnataka.  For Six months, Mango becomes a part of our lives, so much so, that the usage of other fruits simply next to nil. Even in our temples following the Chaaturmaasa Vratha, almost all the fruits other than mangoes are not used in the mango season. 

The Mango will rule the palate for another six months and then vanish into oblivion, bringing us to wait again for summer for a taste of this blissful fruit.     

Indian Cinema has always been fascinated by Ghosts. From Mahal to Madhumathi to Bhoot to Apthamithra, our cinema makers have always found that it is an interesting theme to use the supernatural in their movies. Most cinema makers have at least one ghost movie to their credit. Each movie, language notwithstanding, has a signature ghost song or tune, that is played and replayed each time the ghost is seen on screen.

Most of the “ghost” characters in our movies are women with long flowing hair let loose and a white sari to match. We hardly find men portraying ghosts in our movies, though it is a common feature in the movies of the West.

For a long time in the movie, till the climax, we are only shown the profile of the ghost, never a full-face view. And when the face of the ghost is shown, it is usually a scar face, with red eyes and fang like teeth. At this time, the background music reaches a crescendo, and most times is successful in creating a ripple of fear in the brave too.

Most of these “ghosts” are women seeking revenge. They may be baying for the blood of an ex-lover boy or to avenge a family dispute. Sometimes it is an obsessed lady in love with someone spurning her advances. Sometimes, it is live people portraying ghosts for their selfish gains.

Most of the old films relied on the “Light and Shadow effect” to create that eerie atmosphere whenever these “ghosts” were shown. Background score also added to this effect, but was just supportive to the superb camera work. Usually it would be thunder and lightning, howling of wolves, screeching owls and creaking doors and gates.

The moment gates and doors started opening by themselves, along with thunder and lightning, it was a sure-fire prelude to a glimpse of the ghost.

In recent times, background score is the main component to creating this mood. Technology has ensured that camera work is very less and the somber effect is easily achieved.

Most of these “ghost songs” are very hummable and are mostly sung at music competitions and picnics.

I also like that scene from “Pyaar Kiye Jaa” when Mehmood explains a typical ghost scenario to his father, played in the movie by Om Prakash. It is a brilliant performance by Mehmood, and an even super one by Om Prakash, who looked terribly scared as the scene progressed.

The Ramsay brothers, who were experts in this field, popularized the trend of ghost movies in Hindi Cinema. They produced flicks like “Do Gaz Zameen ke Neeche, Bandh Darwaaza, Purana Mandir, Sannata” and others, which were B-grade horror flicks.

Great catchy songs were a common feature, and most of the good horror flicks entertained the audience to the fullest. They seem more entertaining than their Western Counterparts to me, give me an Indian horror flick any day, would love to watch it any number of times.

It is one year since our favorite “Annavru” left us.

His voice is something that can be called “Kanchina KanTha”. I salute this humble human being and brilliant personality.

A Gaana Namana to this larger than life persona. I can only use superlatives of all adjectives to describe this soul.

Here is a list of 25 of my favorite Dr Rajkumar Songs

01) jeeva hoovagide -Nee nanna gellalare

02) Beladingalagi Baa – Huliya Haline Mevu

03) Raaga Anuraaga – Sanaadi Appanna

04) Belli Moodithu – Kavi Ratna KaaLidaasa

05) Chaluveya Nota – Shankar Guru

06) Haalalladaru Haaku – Devatha Manushya

07) Cheluveye Ninna Nodalu – Hosa BeLaku

08) Maanikya Veena – Kavi Ratna KaaLidaasa

09) Naadamaya- Jeevana Chaitra

10) Yaava Kaviyu – Bhagyada Lakshmi Baaramma

11) Kalletiginta Ninna – Raja Nanna Raja

12) Haayagi KuLithiru Neenu – Haalu Jenu

13) Kanneera Dhaare – Hosa Belaku

14) Haalu Jenu Ondaada Haage – Haalu Jenu

15) Aaradhisuve – Babruvaahana

16) Vaara Banthamma – Bhagyavantha

17) Baanigondu Elle Ellide – Premada Kanike

18) Mutthinantha Maathondu – Bahaddur Gandu

19) Haayada Ee Sanje – Vasantha Geetha

20) HeLuvudu Ondu – Jwaala Mukhi

21) Jenina Holeyo – Chalisuva Modagalu

22) Love me or hate me – Shankar Guru

23) Le Le Appana Magale – Trimurthi

24) Bisi Bisi Kajjaya – Haavina Hede

25) BaaLu BeLakaayitu -Haalu Jenu

RIP, Annavare. We miss you.

Continuing the series on Bangalore’s localities, here is a list of localities called “PaaLya”. PaaLya is an area of land, ruled by a PaaLeyagara, meaning Chieftain, in Kannada. The origins of this word can be traced back to the time when Bangalore was ruled by the

Wodeyars and the Muslim rulers of Mysore.

Here is a small list of PaaLya areas in Bangalore.  

Here is a small list of PaaLya areas in Bangalore.  

Ø       Annasandra PaaLya

Ø       Ane PaaLya

Ø       Bhovi PaaLya

Ø       Dore Sani PaaLya

Ø       Diwaanara PaaLya

     Ø       Gori PaaLya

Ø       Gorgunte PaaLya

Ø       Gowdana PaaLya

Ø       Kalaasi PaaLya

Ø       Kadirena PaaLya

Ø       Mannarayana PaaLya

Ø       Manorayana PaaLya

Ø       Mesthri PaaLya

Ø       Moodala PaaLya

Ø       Munireddy PaaLya

Ø       Nagannana PaaLya

Ø       Papa Reddy PaaLya

Ø       Sait PaaLya

Ø       Subbaiahana PaaLya

Ø       Sudda gunte PaaLya

Ø       Subedaar PaaLya

Ø       Sultaan PaaLya

Ø       TigaLara PaaLya

     Ø       Ukad PaaLya 

Please include if I have missed out any.

What ever you call it, it is the same. I often wonder what this mystery called sleep is all about. What happens in our bodies during those eight hours that we shut ourselves off from the world is an intriguing issue. In spite of the whole body being at rest, the brain remains active and conjures up images that we see as dreams. And the other issue, it is said that humans cannot see with their eyes closed, how is it that we can dream so vividly? How is it we are seeing something with our eyes closed?

 Wiki  says “ Sleep is the state of natural rest observed in most mammals, birds, fish, as well as invertebrates such as the fruitfly Drosophila. It is characterized by a reduction in voluntary body movement, decreased reaction to external stimuli, an increased rate of anabolism (the synthesis of cell structures), and a decreased rate of catabolism (the breakdown of cell structures). In humans, mammals and many other animals which have been studied, such as fish, birds, mice and fruitflies, regular sleep is necessary for survival. The capability for arousal from sleep is a protective mechanism and also necessary for health and survival.” 

Research maintains that eight to nine hours of sleep for adult humans is optimal and that sufficient sleep benefits alertness, memory and problem solving, overall health, as well as reducing the risk of accidents. Several experiments have demonstrated that cognitive performance declines with fewer than eight hours of sleep. 

Each individual’s sleep need and timing is different. I have heard elders at home recollecting that they went to sleep atleast a couple of hours earlier than the time I go to sleep today.

 Hindu scriptures too have references of sleep in most of the epics. In the Ramayana, we can see a character like Kumbhakarna and in the Bhagavatha, we find the character of Muchakunda.Both prayed for undisturbed sleep and the consequences of their being woken up were unpleasant. 

Our saints and philosophers have also written odes about sleep, we can come across numerous lullabies in praise of several of our Gods and Goddesses, composed by them. It is nothing short of a nightmare to have a sleepless night.

The very thought that everyone else around us is happily asleep is something we cannot digest. The poignant and silent atmosphere, the dark night, the dogs barking outside, the policeman’s whistle; it all adds up to make a person more sensitive to his sleepless state. 

Several home remedies are prescribed to end this sleepless state. Some suggest a hot bath before bed, others suggest a glass of warm milk, yet others say that a walk before bedtime. 

What ever, I view sleep as a tonic to my tired body and mind. I always wish that no one remains sleepless, for being so is the worst punishment a person can endure.

 Fello blogger Shruthi has written a post on her comfort food, Saaru-Anna, becos of which I am reminded of my own preference for Udupi Saaru.

Here is a simple recipe for one of my favorite foods, Saaru.  Saaru derived from “Saara” in Kannada, means essence or extract. It is called so, because when Dal is cooked, the thin watery layer on top is skimmed off for the Saaru, while the thick remainder is used in other preparations like Sambar.  

There are several types of Saaru; Lemon Saaru, Garlic Saaru, Pudi Saaru, GoDD Saaru and Sappe Saaru etc. The best Saaru I have tasted has been at Udupi, at the Krishna Matha. They serve a different variety of Saaru at the beginning of the meal.

To write about the food in Krishna Matha would be like writing a mega serial.  At this juncture, I would like to share the recipe of the Saaru alone.  

Ingredients

Ø       Togari BeLe (Thuvar Dal)  – ½ Cup

Ø       Green Chillies – 4-5 (Depends on how spicy you want the Saaru to be) Slit lengthwise

Ø       Coriander leaves – for Garnish

Ø       Curry Leaves – For Garnish

Ø       Salt – To Taste

Ø       Ghee – for Oggarne

 Ø       Mustard Seeds – 2 Tsps

Ø       Jeera – 1 Tsp

Ø       Asafoetida – A Pinch

Ø       Tomato – 1 chopped into small pieces (optional)

Ø       Jaggery – A small Pea-Sized amount (optional)

 Method

 Ø       Pressure Cook Togari BeLe with more water than usual, it must be watery.

Ø       Mash the Dal well boil.

Ø       Add the salt and green chillies and tomatoes

Ø       Allow boiling till the tomatoes are cooked. Add jaggery (Optional).

Ø       Saaru is almost ready, add the coriander and curry leaves.

Ø       Temper with Ghee, Mustard Seeds, Jeera and Asafoetida.

 Some people like to add a dash of lemon juice and a small pea-sized bit of jaggery to enhance the taste.  

It is served in Udupi sans the tomatoes, lemon juice and jaggery. For an authentic taste, eliminate the above three. If you want an enhanced taste, add the three ingredients and see the difference. 

This dish tastes best with steaming hot rice and ghee. Love to have it as an appetizing drink too.

Readers, please try this at home and also tell me about your favorite versions of this dish.