RUNG 2014 – preparation in full swing – last week

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RUNG 2014 – it is another weekend late night when instead of enjoying long summer late night outs I am sitting in front of my laptop… this time for a passion more satisfying than partying!

Research work on South Asian spices and ingredients. The more I search the more I get lost..just like Alice in Wonderland… South Asia and the cultural connect of spice is so intense and infinite -I never imagined. Yes! I never imagined.

In past five months, I have flipped through, scanned and skimmed over to 25 books and research journals (I have made a reference list for future use too) to read and make myself more aware of/ about South Asian spices, Spice Trade and South Asian Spice route. That is apart from my regular studies and research work. Do I find it boring – well a Big Fat NO!! I love it!!

Just that I do not get time to express/share/make note of my thoughts and philosophies as I delve through the treasure out luxurious South Asian heritage – around food, cuisine and spices. Also, guilty of not pursuing my first love – painting and sketching 🙁

From now on I will try my best to write atleast one line on this blog with a purpose to share or maintain a food trail for self reference or just to share with my friends, family and South Asian Cuisine enthusiasts.

So just to give a sneak peek the day started at 5 am… with some reading and snuggling in my bed because it is Saturday still (was Saturday morning). Then after long promises I finally created (read baked) little sinful monsters with bits of sunshine and heavily laden with pure love (read butter), and more than half the amount of pure sin (read dark baking chocolate) accompanied with a heap of sunshine (read Orange zest) finely chopped and equal amount of Courage ( read Thyme, more on that later).  Rolled it up and baked! Viola…sinful densely fattened cookies (inspired from a recipe from a Russian friend) freshly baked bites of sin

for the RUNG 2014 final weekend meeting before we head to the main event just – six days from now.

freshly baked bites of sin

Being the last meeting as mentioned above – this meeting was more Desi Diet flavour sampling. As week(end)ly routine YinYang duo Farah Shams – Director Creative and Salman Khan – Operations Director for Ethnic Marketing welcomed us to enjoy the hearth of their beautiful world in Mississauga.

I better post pics as I am short of world to describe the fun and flavours we savoured along with juicy talks from seasoned team mates Rashida Mirza Quershi, Amreeta Mehra, Poonam, Wafa Malik, Saboo Naz, and young birdy Fatima each whom contributed zestfully.

 

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Desi Diet Uncode: Clockwise from top: Home made Pakistani style Dahi Phulki by Sabhoo;  Veg rolls by Wafa Malik;  Pav and Homemade spicy Bhaaji -Mumbai style by Poonam; Rashida’s special Brick cake made from scratch; Crispy well-seasoned, lightly battered Pakoras/Bhajiyas by Amreeta Mehra. Followed-up close shots of the delightful balance of textures and taste – perfect for summer Desi parties.

Though creative leads Aun Raza, Uzma and Sabiha Ali were busy sorting out last minute creative details  ( pics due will post them soon) with each exhibit leaders – most of us discussed and unlayered and tasted the rich exuberant cultures of South Asia. From food, to companions, to fashion to textile weaves and embroideries… the chattering was boundless… partly intoxicated with South Asian food flavours and partly due company of awesome women inspiration.

Flaunting Kantha work-hand embroidery from Odisha and Bengal - Candid moments with Farah Khan, Wafa Malik and Amreeta Mehra : pic courtesy  Rashida 

Flaunting Kantha work-hand embroidery from Odisha and Bengal – Candid moments with Farah Khan, Wafa Malik and Amreeta Mehra : pic courtesy  Rashida

How the afternoon passed-by… I have no clue.. or I better put it… I realised only when I reached home early evening with list of to do things for the exhibit still.

So back to the books and research journals, antique atlas search, spice routes and spice trade facts search, spices names and labeling list to do – and I am Distracted with an uppercase D. Simply by reading the vast application and indigenous uses of  South Asian spices. Besides, amazing is the cultural impact or utilization of these spices. More on that soon.  Promise.

Now it is wee hours of Sunday morning and my RUNG team mates distract me by naming themselves as RUNGers… then Rangeels… and then Rangeelay!! Now renaming team RUNG 2014  as Rangeelay – the credit goes to Me!

I know I am so exhausted.. and thus sounding funny me!!

Good night.. good morning… have splendid Sunday.