Biryani with a Persian twist

Biryani with a Persian twist Anyone who likes Indian cuisine is familiar with the Biryani. Few know that the word Biryani is derived from the Farsi word "Birian". Some believe that the dish could therefore have originated somewhere in erstwhile Persia. Today's attempt was to make a biryani with a persian twist, right from the choice of meat to the spices. So, I used mutton and only persian dry spice powder. Contributed by  Rajan Manickavasagam . Published  11. December 2016 Ingredients Salt (to taste) Crushed black pepper  Persian dry spices 1 cup natural/greek yoghurt 2 cups of basmati rice 500 gm of mutton chops  2 tablespoons of olive oil 2 tablespoons of clarified butter (ghee) 1 large onion chopped into juliennes 10-12 cashew nuts Assorted whole spices - mace, cinnamon sticks, cardamom and star anise Instructions Marinate the mutton in salt, pepper, persian dry spices and olive oil for 10 minutes. Heat a wok and

Single Malt infused Burger

Single Malt infused Burger I have been fascinated with the various barbecue sauces from America. There's a wide variety of them ranging from the Kansas City, Louisiana, Tennessee and Texas. Largely, they use similar ingredients with some regional variations.  I thought of making a variation of the Tennessee sauce by using Single Malt instead of an American bourbon. Contributed by  Rajan Manickavasagam . Published  02. January 2016 Ingredients Salt (to taste) Crushed black pepper  2 tablespoon Tabasco sauce 200 ml Tomato puree 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce (or to taste) 2 chicken breasts  2 tablespoons of olive oil 1 tablespoon of Apple Cider vinegar 1 tablespoon of Soy sauce 2 tablespoons of Glenfiddich 12 year single malt  1 finely chopped onion 2 burger buns Instructions Heat the oil in a wok. Saute the onions. Add the salt and pepper.  Add the various sauces as you continue to saute the onion. After a few minutes, add

Musings from a Decade

So far, I have had a career in technology spanning 17 years. Recently, I completed 10 years in my current organization. I had the opportunity to work with great leaders, articulate managers, creative technical experts and incredibly hard working developers. While 10 years in an organization is a milestone, there are others who have served for many decades. In the words of the American poet Robert Frost, "There are miles to go before I sleep".  I was reflecting on the decade gone by. Here are a few musings for a fulfilling career. The Astrologer's Dilemma This is a folktale from Birbal. He was the advisor to the Mughal emperor Akbar. Birbal once had a merchant as his neighbour. The merchant's fancy was to constantly consult astrologers about his fate. An astrologer once read the merchant's palm and predicted various things. Towards the end, he also proclaimed that the all the near and dear ones would die before the merchant himself. This enraged the

When a photograph get a life

Photographs usually capture a slice of life. But sometimes, they get a life of their own too. I count a few of my photographs as my favourites. But one in particular seems to have become very popular. This is a photograph of the UK Parliament on a winter evening. I took it from the opposite bank on the Thames. It is licensed under creative commons license. Around a dozen sites have used this photograph. While some ask for permission, most of them use it along with attribution. It is interesting to see the number of topics that are linked to this photograph, ranging from education, diversity, health, news, current affairs and politics. https://www

Tech - Setup CI-CD in under an hour

I was always curious about the badges that some Github repositories sport. Largely, the badges are related to continuous integration and automated tests. I thought of exploring some of the cloud based tools related to engineering a piece of software. I was pleasantly surprised at the variety and ease of use of these tools.  To start with, I needed some code to start with. I already had Java based REST API that I use for trainings on Elasticsearch. My repository is at Github . I have integrated my repository with the following tools - Continuous Integration and Deployment - Travis-CI Code Coverage - Coveralls Cloud Provider - Heroku Depending on the type of application and programming language, all the above tools provide documentation on integration with Github. Based on the size of the code, it takes a few minutes for build, tests, code analysis and deployment steps to be executed. The application is finally deployed to heroku.  The diagram below describes the flow once a

The People's Chef

Today is the 6th death anniversary of one of the most famous chef's - Keith Floyd. He was a chef, restaurateur, author and businessman.  Image Source - Bristol Post It was in the early 1990's that satellite television took off in India. And, one of the first channels to make it's foray was the venerable BBC. Keith Floyd's TV shows like - Floyd on Spain, Floyd on Italy, Floyd on France etc. opened up new cuisines and experiences for the Indian audience. He was probably one of the first chef's who wanted to spread the joy of food among people. His energy and passion for all things food and cooking was only far too evident. In addition, he expressed an almost childlike enthusiasm for different cultures and experiences.   So, here's to you Mr. Floyd. May you have a good time wherever you are, with your trademark 'splash and a dash'.

Stuffed Bell Peppers

Stuffed Bell Peppers Recently Tastemade  app was launched on Apple TV. There are some interesting indie chefs and hosts worth watching on Tastemade. Some of the programs reminded me of England. So, this recipe is inspired from typical English ingredients like worcestershire sauce and 'sharp tasting' cheddar cheese. Contributed by  Rajan Manickavasagam . Published  09. August 2014 Ingredients Rock salt (to taste) Crushed black pepper  1 cup of cooked rice (can be left over) 1 tablespoon of port wine 1 tablespoon of worcestershire sauce (or to taste) 2 diced piri piri chicken sausages Handful of chopped fresh coriander leaves (or mint leaves) 1-2 tablespoon of olive oil 1 red bell pepper 3-4 thin slices of cheddar cheese 1 toothpick for presentation! Instructions Slice the top of a red bell pepper. Scoop out the insides of the pepper. Roast the pepper and the top in a preheated oven at 220C for about 15 minutes.  Take the pepper ou

A melange

A melange Sometimes, we get saddled with random vegetables in the kitchen. I had bell peppers, indian cottage cheese and baby corn at my disposal. Here is a paneer jalfreez with all these ingredients. Contributed by  Rajan Manickavasagam . Published  17. October 2014 Ingredients 1 teaspoon of salt (or to taste) 1 tablespoon of crushed black pepper  1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste 2 chopped red onion 250 gm diced indian cottage cheese 2-3 chopped red chilli 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder 1 teaspoon of turmeric 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder 1/2 tablespoon of garam masala powder 1/2 teaspoon asafoetida 1 cardamom 1 cinnamon 4-5 tablespoon of vegetable oil 2 chopped bell peppers 6 chopped baby corn 1 teaspoon cumin seeds Instructions Heat oil in a pan or a wok. Add asafoetida powder and cumin seeds. Once the oil is hot, add the chopped onions, baby corn and bell pepper.  Saute in medium heat for a while. Add all the powders, ginger gar

Tech - xCloud Architecture (Part 4): At Your Service

"The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.", Walt Disney. Let's start developing the e-commerce platform feature one at a time. Since, services are the centre of the platform, I initially built the basic set of services required, like - product, price, category, search etc. Building Blocks Identify the key building blocks of a service. Some of them could be - Programming language to be used, in this case it's  Python . Framework -  Flask . API Gateway to provide authentication, throttling, etc. -  3Scale . Logging provider -  Logentries . Provider - The provider under the service contains the business logic. I am going to take one service as an example - search. I used two providers -  Indexden  and  ElasticSearch . I will explain in a moment why. Anatomy of a Service All logos are registered/trademarked/copyright of the respective organizations. They are shown in the diagram above for ease of understanding. Handling Ch

Tech - xCloud Architecture (Part 3): The Best Laid Schemes Of Mice And Men

So far, we have looked at the objective  and some principles . Now, to start executing the plan. The Team I now need a team and tools to start executing the plan. So, there's me and a mini-me. I am the team - product owner, designer, manager, architect, developer and support analyst all rolled into one. So far, I think we all got along just fine! The mini-me is the tools required - Acer Aspire One Netbook with 1.66 Ghz CPU, 2 GB RAM, 160 GB hard disk and a home broadband connection. Admittedly, the netbook is not the most powerful of machines. Since I use everything on the cloud, I was not too handicapped by the netbook. In terms of the software, all I used is - Node, Python, Notepad++, Git, Putty and the Appfog/Openshift command line tools. The Maneuvers It is said that, one of the reasons Napoleon was successful in his battles was the brilliant use of maneuvers. Although, he had a relatively smaller army, he used speed and flexibility to great effect. So, from