Apparently some Professor of some University somewhere around the world put up a note in class about how he knows when students are “texting” in class, “because no one looks at their crotch and smiles”, it said.
Now that may have triggered some chuckles in campus, but that’s the reality. And it’s not the teens and tweens who are having endless conversations on their smartphone devices. Its us adults too. In between meals, meetings, coffee breaks, at the dinner table and while out on a date, and even while putting the baby to sleep.
Its wonderful how our two thumbs can do so much talking! Thank god there are no Dronacharyas around in this day and age. Between the husband and me, cell phones and television are banned during meal times. That is something I have learned from my own Mother. We wouldn’t have TV on during lunch or dinner, unless there was some life changing India-Pakistan cricket match happening. Cell phones with texting features did not exist then.
What did exist were plain old black telephones, with their black curly cords. Where people would chat for hours, without the fear of being charged by the minute. The receiver was so heavy, our hands would ache from just holding it. I still remember when as a 10-year-old, we got the first phone at home. It took us three years of wait time to have a phone connection back then in the late 1980s. But then it was another century then. The Nineteen Eighties. That was also the time, I as a budding pre-teen hated taking a lunch box to school. Though, now that I look back, I’d probably say my sister and I had the best lunches in class. Nutritious and interesting food prepared by my Mum every morning.
The ingredients for Chirer Pulao are:
1 cup chire/chura/flattened rice, choose the thin, long-grain variety
1 potato, remove the skin and cut into small cubes
1 small red onion, finely chopped
Handful of cauliflower flowerets, cut into small pieces
Few green chillies, finely chopped
Half cup green peas (frozen or fresh)
Handful of broken cashew nuts
Handful of peanuts
Handful of raisins
Handful of fresh coriander, finely chopped
Begin by heating oil in a thick pan. Add the cubed potatoes and shallow fry till they turn golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and keep.
In the remaining oil, add the cauliflower. Shallow fry till lightly browned and keep.
Add the peanuts (first), cashew and raisins in that order and sauté on low heat till the peanuts and cashew are lightly browned.
In the remaining oil, add the green chillies and onions and sauté till translucent.
Do a taste test and adjust the seasoning if needed. Serve the Chirer Pulao warm in little bowls or send some packing for lunch to your kids’ school.