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An Asian treat at Radisson, Dhaka

"Change is constant. From time to time we will be changing our menu. So we decided to change our menu now," said Madhusudan Jhingon, the General Manager of the Radisson Blu Water Garden Hotel at the Spice and Rice restaurant of the hotel.

Stepping into the restaurant, with Chinese table runners giving the dining area a hint of China and long cushions on the seat giving it a Middle-eastern touch, one also gets the vibe of Asia from the decor and the dim lighting of the place, which adds a soothing effect.

While dining at Spice and Rice you can hear the crackling sounds of cooking and see the chefs stirring up your meal in the kitchen adjacent to the dining area and if you desire you can even dine at the kitchen counter.

Chef Shakur Ul Alam, a master chef in preparing Far Eastern, South East Asian and Pan Pacific cuisine is the Sous Chef of Radisson Blu Water Garden Hotel and he has been bringing his expertise to the people of Radisson since 2005. As a change to the menu, Chef Shaker has brought local, Indian, South-East Asian and Middle Eastern flavours and cooking methods with an emphasis on healthy preparation.

Vegetarian or non-vegetarian; there are ample options for everybody. You can choose from a range of South East Asian spring rolls, Malay satays and spicy Thai salads. Spice and Rice offers two types of menu. One is their a la carte Far East menu, where they offer the signature dishes of seven countries; Japan, Korea, China, Thailand, India, Malaysia and Vietnam. Four signature dishes from each of the countries are offered in the Far East Menu. Korean Breaded Fried Fish, Vietnamese Chicken with Pineapple and Cashew Nut, Chinese Honey Glazed Prawns, Malaysian Nasi Goreng, Japanese Tempura and the ever popular Indian Tandoor Chicken Tikka are some of the names in the Far East menu.

Spice and Rice also offers an extensive Indian set menu. Here, you can choose eight items from thirty two different Indian dishes. In this set menu you can avail a salad, a starter, kebab, parata/naan/roti, rice, curry and dessert. Among the kebabs, the Chupa Rustam is a very tasty item with chicken wrapped with minced mutton. The Fish Methiwala in the curry section is made with our local bhetki fish. Spice and Rice also serves local desserts such as Roshmalai, warm Gulaab Jamuun, Misthi Doi and Mixed Fruits.

If you are a fan of Asian cuisine be sure to visit Spice and Rice. You will not come back disappointed.

Spice and Rice is open everyday from 6.30pm to 11.00pm.

By Karishma Ameen


Images through a theodolite IV: The Ghost

Some time in December 2003.
The Present

“Wake up!”
- I am dreaming.
“Wake up and see if you are dreaming.”
- Go away…figment of my imagination.”

“Why is it so hard to comprehend? Touch my hands; feel your fingers brush mine. Feel the flesh against my bones. Cut me and see me bleed. Will you believe if I shed blood, the same that flows through your veins?”

-Imagination. Imagination… justanimagination.

“Coward! You hide behind a screen, afraid to face the world, spineless and pathetic. You act brave and take shelter in drugs -- sugar coated pills with grains and dust; the talisman in your arms with scribbled signs and script you never understood. You believe, but you deny me of my existence, even when I stand before you in flesh and blood.”

- Go away…leave me alone…go…

“Step out of this box, this prison you have created for yourself. Move out of these walls and breathe the wet, monsoon air. Feel the rain drops against your bare skin. Press ears against the ground and hear the seeds sprout in the July rain. Come out of this shell my son…”

- Let me be. Leavejustleaveleavemealone”

A pause, followed by the cacophony of endless silence engulfed my being; the ghost of my grandfather was gone, but he would invariably return. He always did.

The room remained empty and silent, where I stayed stripped and motionless, resting on the folds of my hands, eyes shut. Half asleep; half awake.

The mahogany desk stood on all fours; its back gently pushed against the embrace of the plastered wall. Naked and motionless, I was the only sign of life within the milk-white walls. It smelled of lacquer, suppressed by the stench of a heap of cigarettes lying on the floor, under the polished, reddish-brown table.

It took meticulous care to keep the room devoid of furniture. The mahogany table and a chair remained my sole companion in the quest through reality. Why the table remained where it lay, was an unsolved mystery.

The monsoon gave hope of life but I hardly left my lair; never ventured out into the world of coloured sanity. I remained submerged in thoughts, disoriented and troubled by the images that conjured in my mind.

“Why this mere existence?”
- Leave me alone.
“Is the path blurred in confusion?”
- I don't care…you are not real.

“Do you hear the blades of the overhead fan slice through air as it moves in perpetual motion? You hear me call your name but you never run in to my arms. Open your eyes and see me, see that I exist.”

- But you don't.
I was his captive, submerged in a sea of restless thoughts. I was sane, yet I preferred to be lost in an abyss of insanity where the world as I knew it would cease to exist.

I was comfortable with grandpa, although he was intimidating. My insecurities stripped naked, but my secrets safe, carefully locked in a wooden box. His ghost, whose existence I was asked to disregard, was my constant companion. He was my guide through the labrynth of reality.

- Grandpa…
- Grandpa!
- Speak to me…
- Speak to me of legacy.
“And the mahogany desk?”
- Yes, that too.
(to be continued…)

By Mannan Mashhur Zarif


In Star Lifestyle Issue #6, Volume #11, Tuesday July 12, 2011 we featured an article entitled "Summer Break" on Page 4-5. The content of the feature inadvertently highlighted some stereotyped images of young boys and girls in their pre-teens and teens.

Star Lifestyle endorses no such image where a boy should draw cars and girls paint butterflies. This was an oversight of the writer as well as the Star Lifestyle team of editors. We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused by this. And we reiterate that as a leading weekly of the nation, and as part of The Daily Star, we do not subscribe to such notions.


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