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Book Launch
Healthy Recipes by Tommy Miah

Staying slim and trim is the cardinal secret to a longer-lasting life. People have (fortunately) moved out of the days when a few extra pounds around the middle were considered a sign of "health and prosperity". This is why we have so many gyms, yoga classes and fat-free salad dressings mushrooming in Dhaka. Tommy Miah, the celebrity chef, is now joining the league.

November 15, 2006 saw the launching of the book, "Healthy Recipes by Tommy Miah". As the title suggests, the cookbook casts light on a series of recipes to promote good health. The launch was held at Heritage Resturant in Gulshan. "It has become a necessity to stay healthy and in good shape," comments Tommy Miah, "I am almost fifty, but it hardly shows. I am very regimental when it comes to healthy eating, and I want the others to be likewise. That is why I wrote the book."

And what is so special about these recipes? "We use a lot of items in our cooking that are not good for health." Among other things, he emphasised on the use of salt and oil. "I have done my best to minimise salt and oil, and still retain the original taste." He is a fan of all the recipes, but it was hinted that the BBQ Fish would steal the show.

The book launch was organised by ICDDRB, of which Mr. Miah is a Goodwill Ambassador. The principal objective of ICDDRB is to create awareness of healthy eating. This includes the intake of all the important nutrients in the right quantities, maintenance of adequate metabolism rate, and so on. In other words, they feel the need to "mainstream nutrition in primary healthcare".

The launch was followed by lunch (naturally!), which comprised of the regular Heritage buffet, as well as a few items straight out of the cookbook.

"Healthy Recipes by Tommy Miah" is fairly affordable. The price tag reads Tk.300. The book has yet to become available in the stores, but be sure to keep a sharp lookout for it.

By Shahmuddin Ahmed Siddiky

Family brunch at Radisson

Radisson Water Garden Hotel Dhaka has come up with the very exciting offer of 'Family Brunch' during weekends. Brunch is very popular in the western countries and relatively new here but as the hotel plays host to many visiting westerners on business and other trips, the hotel management thought it might be a good opportunity to try out such an offer at Water Garden Brasserie - the hotel's all day dining place. At the family brunch the buffet has a wide range of dishes that one can choose from.

Brunch, which comes from a combo of breakfast and lunch, serves as an in between meal for those late for breakfast or early for lunch. Usually morning starts late on weekends and are meant for relaxing and spending time with family. The Family Brunch has been designed to cater to these needs. And while thinking of families, the hotel has also made arrangements for exciting games and entertainment facilities for children. Hotel personnel are designated to look after the kids while the parents enjoy the food. Family brunch is offered from 11.30 am to 3.30 pm on weekends only (Friday & Saturday). The program will continue all round the year.

-LS Desk

Chronicles of Sam Q

Dearest Diary
I think I am in trouble. Big trouble. I really don't know how to let you into this sordid little secret life of mine. You think you know me, but as you are about to find out, you know zilch about me. Okay, okay, let me try to soften the blow a bit. Have you seen the TV series 'Monk' on star world at 5:30pm every weekday? Well, if you haven't, then start watching and you will understand what I am talking about. In plain English we call it the obsessive, compulsive disorder behaviour and in simple Bangla, we call it "chhuchibye".

Well, in my defense all I can say is I am not as bad as Monk, yet. As my husband pointed out rather pointedly the other day, this OCD thing will rule my life if I don't snap out of this ever-spiraling-out-of-control stuff that I do.

Diary, let me tell you what I do and then you decide if I am out of control or not.

Like after I am done doing my daily chores or errands and I am going home, I take out my wet wipes and clean my hands, my phone and the handles of my bag. Is that really bizarre?? Well, maybe passing on a wet wipe to my driver to clean his hands and the steering wheel is a bit out of the ordinary, but me doing it seems alright.
Doesn't it??

Then diary, as I enter my apartment, I press all the lift buttons with my knuckles. I can't use my fingers-I just wiped them. Knuckles I can live with. Anyway then I press the bell, yes ... yes ... with my knuckles and as soon as I enter, I open my sandals and clean the soles of my sandles with ready-to-use, moist, disposable, small, square pieces of cloth. Before you judge me diary, please think about our favourite national past time: spitting. In the Olympics, if there was a spitting competition, I kid you not diary, we would bring home the gold.

Now, moving on; my house is regularly sanitised with clorox. The walls, the sofas, home appliances, switch boards, everything. Aah!! The pungent smell of bleach. What can I do if it does not come in the essence of lemon fragrance? You know how people smell petrol. Clorox has the same effect on me.

Okay, the next one is a bit weird for other people, but I guess not for me. I can never wear anything which comes directly from the tailors or the shops. I wash or dry clean the clothes before I wear them. I have seen how sari falls are stitched on. I rest my case. Then hotel rooms. I can never use the bed spread for anything. I sort of gingerly cover my legs with the inside white sheets and cover my upper body with my very own shawl from home. But, I use the towels and the pillows. I know of many people who carry towels, sheets and pillow cases from home. So there!!

I remember when this disorder was in its initial blossoming stage, my husband's nephew Kaiser who was just getting exposed to my (let's call it) freaky cleanliness stage, had a suggestion for me. He asked in his very droll, poker face voice why I didn't have a shower fixed in front of my house. So every time a person rang the bell, he/she would get doused with water and enter my house-clean. Now that he is a hot shot banker, I hope he will not deny his suggestion if I actually put it to use. Maybe not water, a giant blast of sanitised air might have the same clean effect.

Diary, I know I am... um... sort of weird in a nice kind of a way, but I have friends who have weird habits too. My pal Shefi, goes into restaurants and asks bemused waiters for boiling water to wash her knife and fork before digging in. My other friend Mish-Mash uses 1 whole Lux soap everyday "apparently" for bathing. Thirty soaps for thirty days of the month. Beat that!! In the next Lux beauty award show he should be given special recognition for his contribution to the ever booming Lux sales. Can you believe it? Our very own Mr. Lux.

Anyway jokes apart, I know there are lots of OCDs out there. It is a disease which only gets worse if you let it get to you. So, let's put our brakes on and put ourselves and the people around us out of their misery.

Amen to that.
And now a very popular cake recipe of mine.

Caramel Mud Cake
250g chopped butter
200g chopped white chocolate
450g firmly packed brown sugar (2.1/4 cups)
11/2 cup water
2 tsp vanilla essence
3 eggs lightly beaten
400g of flour
1 tsp baking powder

(1) Pre-heat oven.
(2) Combine the butter, chocolate, sugar and water in a medium saucepan. Whisk over low heat until the chocolate is melted and sugar is dissolved. Transfer mixture to a large bowl and cool for 15 minutes.
(3) Whisk in essence and eggs, then sifted flour with baking powder. Pour mixture into greased pan. Bake in a low oven for about 1 and 1/2 hours or till done.
(4) Cool cake in the pan.

Caramel Frosting
125g chopped butter
1 cup or 200g firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 cup (80 ml) milk
11/2 cups (240g) sifted icing sugar mixture (app).

Melt the butter in a small pan, stir in the brown sugar and milk then bring to boil. Cook stirring for about 3 minutes and cool. Add enough sifted icing sugar to give a spreading consistency and stir until smooth. Spread cold cake with caramel frosting.

News flash
DD’s wedding season

In need of wedding saris? Dressy Dale can be an interesting option. It has come forward with a brand new line of saris- vibrant colours of orange and fuchsia for 'halud', sequined crimson with a dazzle here and there for the wedding, and a stunning end to it all with the 'bou bhaat' line.

DD has long been a favourite with the ladies who love to stand out from the crowd. And these days, with people becoming increasingly fashion conscious, the competition could not be more intense. The saris are available in cotton, silk, etc. They are available in all the DD showrooms
around the city.


- LS desk




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