When was the last time you got back home, after a long day at work and did not sit back on the couch with your feet on the table and the remote in your hand?
Guilty as charged! Today, HT City, in its own small way, is celebrating the No TV Day. Yes, you read us right.
On January 29, 2011, Hindustan Times, Mumbai, initiated a drive to encourage Mumbaikars to shun their television sets and take on other interesting activities.
The idea behind the initiative was not to be just couch potatoes, but to do something meaningful. It is all about creating your own day with family and friends and in a way discovering a life without TV.
So, take a pause, be with yourself or a loved one and make the most of life outside high-definition. And, the timing couldn’t be better; it’s a Saturday and the beginning of the month! All we can do is suggest three awesome ways of spending it…
No memories are complete without food and what better occasion to bring out the master chef in you? Whip up a simple yet sumptuous meal right in your kitchen. Involve the family or your partner and make it an activity that involves them all. With the mercury soaring, we are not letting you get baked in the kitchen. You can, however, let your palette travel the world today. A quick-fix salad and hassle-free main course should do the trick.
1/2 bunch lettuce
1 cucumber (peeled and de-seeded)
1 red onion
1/4 each bell peppers
5 cherry tomatoes
30 gm feta cheese
A pinch of oregano
20 ml red wine vinegar
40 ml olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
(Chicken lovers could also add generous helpings of grilled chicken or other meats)
Wash and prep the vegetables into chunks. Whisk together oregano, red wine vinegar, salt, pepper and olive oil. Pour over the salad. Toss and serve the salad chilled.
Contributed by food connoisseur Vicky Ratnani, executive corporate chef, Aurus, Mumbai
Bunny Chow (South African)
5 tbsp oil
4 large finely chopped onions
1 pod of finely chopped garlic
3 finely chopped green chillies
1 1/2 tsp ground fennel
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp ground garam masala
1 1/2 tsp ground coriander
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
2 medium sized potatoes halved
100 gm tomato paste
250 gm tomato puree
800 gm chicken with bone/or green vegetables
2 whole loaves of bread
Salt to flavour
Sauté garlic in oil. When brown, add onions and sauté them. Now, add green chillies, turmeric, fennel, cumin and all other powdered spices and fry for 2-3 minutes, stirring continuously. Now, add the potatoes. Mix with the spices. Add the tomato puree and cook till the tomatoes separate from the oil. Now add the meat or seasonal vegetables and sauté them for a few minutes. Add some water for the spices and meat/vegetables to cook. Let it simmer on low heat. Add salt and mix well. Cover and let it cook for 15 minutes in case of vegetables and half hour to 40 minutes for meat.
Plating: Cut fresh white bread loaves into halves or quarters and hollow out the centre, keeping spare bread to one side. Fill the hollowed out bread with hot chicken/vegetable curry so that the bread soaks it all up. Serve it with the scooped out bread.
Contributed by food and travel columnist Rupali Dean
Light some aromatic candles, play your favourite music and just sit back and relax. Sounds silly? Well, so be it. The idea here is not to turn you religious, but to let you connect with yourself.
In our fast-paced routine, we forget to spend time with ourselves; ‘me time’ as they call it. The point is to clear the head and enjoy the connection with yourself.
Dr Adarsh Kohli, professor of clinical psychology at PGI says, “In today’s fast-paced life, one needs to relax physically and mentally instead of closing our mind as we turn on the TV.”
Not all connections are made through meditation — a simple activity such as getting down to reading that book you bought or a trip to a new store to buy yourself some knick-knack goes a long way.
With time on your hands, the world is your oyster.
As author Nicholas Sparks puts it, “Love is like the wind, you can’t see it, but you can feel it.” With good food in your tummy, engulfed in aura of relaxation, how about some well-deserved pampering?
We say, book yourself a spa or a relaxation session to soothe those aching muscles.
MS Kimi, manager, Park Plaza’s O2 Spa, suggests their in-house special, Signature Harmony By Two, wherein two therapists use the same pressure and technique to relax the muscles. A 60 to 90-minute session would cost you R3,000 (excluding taxes).
Manish Jaswal, spa manager, JW Marriott’s Quan Spa, says, “With life in the fast track mode, couples are looking for ways to de-stress. We offer you a simple solution.”
Headmaster’s Salon and Spa also offers European therapies for couples. Veer Kaul, owner of the ‘spalon’ as he calls it, says, “At Headmasters, we focus on safety and trained therapists, as a wrongly-done massages can cause a lot of harm.”
Love thy self
Cloud 9 massage at Headmasters Salon and Spa would cost you R4,500 (including taxes)
A deep-tissue massage, a combination of Balinese and Thai massage, at Park Plaza, Sector 17, would cost you R1,800 (excluding taxes) for a 60-minute session.
Various outlets of Cleopatra offer a variety of de-stress therapies including Foot Reflexology and a combination of Lumi Lumi and Swedish massage, priced at R1,000 for a 60-minute session.
At Quan, men can go in for Thalgo face-therapy while women can enjoy a wide range of face therapies.
*Tricity salons are more than willing to book you a tailor-made package to suit your pocket.