|Home | Issues | The Daily Star Home | Volume 6, Issue 09, Tuesday, March 01, 2011|
A TRUE TASTE OF ASIA
By Tommy miah
Asian vegetable rice
Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to low, keeping the rice covered at all times. After cooking for about 10 minutes, gently stir the rice to distribute the spices evenly. Cook for 25 to 30 minutes or until all of the water has evaporated and the rice is tender.
Healthy barbeque chicken
Place ½ cup yoghurt, cumin, coriander, cilantro, paprika, turmeric, salt, pepper, and garlic into a blender or food processor, and blend until smooth. Transfer to a bowl, and stir in remaining 1½ cups of yoghurt. Pour over the chicken parts, cover, and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours, or overnight.
Preheat grill for medium heat.
Lightly oil the grill grate. Remove chicken from the marinade, and discard any remaining marinade. Grill chicken for 30 to 45 minutes, turning frequently to prevent burning, until juices run clear. Smaller pieces will finish cooking first.
Spicy salmon fish fry
Add the tomatoes and stir for a few seconds before adding the salmon, using the back of your stirring spoon to break the salmon into small pieces in the pan; cook until the salmon is heated through, 5 to 10 minutes; remove from heat. Garnish with cilantro to serve.
An odd obsession
The first thing I did, after the wide-eyed look of shock of course, was ask 'WHY?!' as my best friend licked the last bit of ketchup off his fingers from the plate of fries before we could even have any.
A lot of obsessions and addictions are seen nowadays but the one with ketchup involved is one that's hard to understand. From toddlers, to kids, to teens, to adults, there are ketchup-addicts of every age who seem to add ketchup to anything that is edible. When asked why, they all seem to have the same answer that us, non-ketchup-lovers, don't seem to get at all - 'IT'S AMAZING! That's why!'
So, is it just the taste? The perfect amount of sweetness that's just about right when it hits your taste buds or the tangy, lip-smacking flavour you get that keeps your tongue tingling for minutes after your first bite? Maybe it's both. But is it reason enough?
Let's go to texture - it holds a special state between completely solid and completely liquid. It's smooth and generally cools your mouth the moment it's inside. Sometimes, you can taste the fresh tomatoes just because of the silky texture of the sauce.
Apart from these, what else can be that attractive about it? The colour, maybe? Red is known to be the most attractive, attention-grabbing colour known to man. And once you see something that beautiful and gooey ready for you, you will jump at it as soon as you lay eyes on it.
So what if it tastes amazing or feels amazing or looks amazing? There is still absolutely no reason to be addicted to something so irrelevant in life. Having said that, there's also no reason to not have your mouth watered by now and have the urge to go and have some, and yes, just like that. You know you want to!
By Naziba Basher
CHECK IT OUT
A new name in the fashion industry: Ena La Mode
Modish shoes and bags are must-haves in the wardrobe of a fashion conscious individual. For those who think bags and shoes are synonymous to Thailand and China, think again because Ena La Mode is here to change your perception.
Made completely out of local materials, Ena La Mode boasts a collection of trendy and sophisticated yet durable shoes and bags that cannot be spotted anywhere else in the country. The designs are one of a kind and all their products fall within the price range of Tk.600-5000. They even carry a separate line of sandals for males.
En La Mode started its journey eight months back, on the month of June, 2010. Since then they never looked back. “My target market consists of people who claim international brands to be of utmost quality and complain that such products are unavailable in the country. I want to show them that it is very much possible to produce products that can be compared to the international standards using local materials and production facilities,” says the owner of the shop, Anica Osman.
Entering the shop, one will catch the sight of clutches made out of jamdani sari, bags made out of chicane fabric, and sandals adorned by batik prints. If you bought yourself an extravagant dress but cannot find the perfect shoe or bag that goes with it, don't worry. Ena La Mode is there to provide you with just the shoe or bag that will match your outfit, but this service is available on an order basis. They believe in providing their customers with a customised experience.
Anica Osman feels that the overall concept of branding is very much absent in this industry, and she wants to differentiate Ena La Mode on this ground. They are already exporting a large quantity of their products to U.S.A and will soon start its operations in Malaysia and Dubai. “I want Ena La Mode to be the face of Bangladesh in foreign lands,” adds Anica. She also wants to expand within the country by opening outlets in Chittagong and Sylhet.
They are currently holding four major lines: designer, festive, premium and popular, and will soon launch their Pohela Boishakh collection under the festive line. Ena La Mode is situated in House # 4, Road # 12, Sector-6, Uttara. They are planning to open a new outlet in Gulshan soon.
By Afrida Mahbub
The power of culture
With the International Mother Language day added to our acclaimed list of cultural celebrations, Bangladesh has entered a new height of international recognition for its culture. Other nations are now interested in building mutually beneficial relations with us and have given us numerous cultural centres for this purpose. These cultural centres are the disseminators of the kind of knowledge which would allow the next generation of this country to spread their wings far and wide in this fast integrating, globalised world.
Today, you have the choice of learning a foreign language beyond English, straight from the horse's mouth. Cultural centres such as Alliance Française, Russian Cultural Centre and German Cultural Centre allow you to learn the languages of their respective countries in the manner that is used in daily life and not as it is used in books. These cultural centers can provide teachers whose native tongue is the one being taught, an invaluable component in perfecting a beginner's accent and pronunciation.
Though language is the primary product of these cultural centres, their activities and objectives spread over a diverse array of offerings. Dance, singing and music are the common divisions of extracurriculars you can seek but each centre adds its unique flavour to the activities it provides. For example, dance is taught in styles true to the cultures of the centres, with the German centre teaching Salsa and Samba, the Russian centre teaching ballroom dancing and Indian centre teaching Kathak.
The German Cultural Centre goes a step further than the others do. Apart from providing courses they conduct programmes designed to build collaborations with local schools. Under this programme termed PASCH, they hold seminars to improve the understanding of the culture for the children, train interested teachers in their language and arrange shows for the children to participate in. “Our goal is to provide an in-depth understanding of German cultural values and integrity” says Tanvir Alim, programme officer for the centre.
Apart from these international institutions, we have some of our own local initiatives to thank and cheer for, for keeping the famous Bengali culture alive and flaring. BAFA and Chayyanaut deserve a shout out for their contribution in liberating attitudes towards music and dance. The stigma attached to dance and dancers in Muslim society was greatly reduced and dance made acceptable through their persistence and promotion. The Government is also doing its fair share of promoting our culture for the future generations through Shishu Academy, Nazrul Institute etc. These Government projects are the last barrier against extinction for many parts of our culture.
The power of culture is evident in history. Culture in the past has been the cause of division and destruction. Countries have defined their boundaries depending on what one wears and how one speaks. The new era, however, seems to be using the same differences to make allies rather than foes. Maybe the differences in cultures are what are finally going to bring the world together in the end.
By Raisaa Tashnova
Cultural centres around town
Bangladesh Shishu Academy
Bulbul Lalitkala Academy (BAFA)
Alliance Francaise de Dhaka
Indira Gandhi Indian Cultural Center
German Cultural Center
Russian Cultural Center
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