Kewa Momos-potato filled dumplings

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Half moon-shaped Momos

Apart from the fact that potatoes are available widely, they are also reasonably priced and loved by kids. Here’s my recipe of potato filled dumplings.

Ingredients:

  1. All purpose flour
  2. Potatoes
  3. Asian Chives, a small bunch
  4. Oil
  5. Salt

I still can’t knead exactly enough dough for my potatoes, so I haven’t given any quantity here.

For fill in:

Start by boiling your potatoes in plain water, I used a pressure cooker. Once they are boiled, peel and dice them in a container, a bowl maybe. Add chopped chives (chop them while the potato is boiling, to save time), oil and salt to taste. Mix them well, till the potatoes are mashed.You can taste the filling, to see if it tastes okay. And since we will be steaming the momos, you may add a little more oil than you usually like.

You can use shallots or scallions too. While most prefer onions, I like chives. I didn’t use any spices, but you can always choose to add spices of your choice.

Momo filling

Dough:

Add water to flour, little at a time and knead into a soft dough. I knead mine while the potatoes were being boiled. You can always knead more flour if you have any left over dumpling fillings. Roll them between your palms into small balls(bigger balls for bigger momos). Now, roll them flat using a rolling pin. Try to shape them round, with thinner edges and thicker centre. If you are in a hurry, you can roll out a big sheet and cut into smaller ones using a glass mouth.

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Rolled out dumpling skin

Steaming:

Now, with a spoon, fill in the mashed potatoes in the dumpling skin, and close the openings, you can make them into any shapes, my husband makes the moon shaped momos, while I make the round ones.

Coat the steamer with a layer of oil (any cooking oil, I use soybean oil), and place the dumplings in it, placing them about 3 cms apart from each other. In the mean time, heat water in the base of the steamer (plain water/salted water/with vegetables). If you choose to add vegetables, later on, you can have that water as soup, with the dumplings.

Once the soup boils, place the steamer above that, and check if they are cooked when they smell good. 

Serve with chilli/tomato sauce. You can also have it with fish sauce or any sauce of your choice, I like mine with hot chilli paste and soup.

 

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Jungle Safari at Jaldapara National Park

The Jaldapara National Park (former Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary), one of the biggest in India, is located in Bengal, very close by to my country (around 45 minutes by car from Bhutan’s border of Phuentsholing).

I have always wanted to take my son to some zoo, so that he gets to see the animals in his book for real. After a lot of brainstorming, my husband and I decided to visit the Jaldapara National Park during our new year holidays (this year, it fell in February).

We stayed at Jaldapara Tourist Lodge, which is very close by to the park, and a quiet place too. The ticket counter to enter the park was located very close by to our hotel, but since we arrived late in the evening, the tickets for elephant rides were all sold out (ill luck). So, we opted for the jeep safari.

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If you plan on visiting the park, try to stay at the Hollong Guest House, which is usually packed (rooms were full, so we stayed at the other lodge), This lodge is located inside the park, and right in front of the lodge, across the clear stream is a clearing, where the elephants gather in the evening to feed on salt.

Both the lodges can be booked only from the West Bengal tourist website. click here for booking

We thought we were not very lucky, we didn’t see any Rhinos, except for a few Bisons and many beautiful peacocks. But my son was thrilled, when near a watch tower, we spotted an elephant, feeding on grass.

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Imitating the elephant

At another location, the owner of a 4-year-old baby elephant let my 4-year-old son ride on his elephant, and we said, we were lucky enough.

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Passing a stick

Of course, in that huge park, we spotted very few animals. But that was good enough, the jeep safari cost us only Rs.1520.00, and we were not in the Amazon. We plan to visit Kaziranga in Assam soon.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

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Gillian Schieber Flynn is an American author, screen writer, comic book writer and former television critic for Entertainment Weekly. She will turn 46 on February 24th, 2017.

My former boss, Mr. Bora, gifted me this lovely book during one of my visits to his city, Delhi. You can buy online here

The book doesn’t have a gripping start, so I had to start reading this over and over again over weeks, and months, because I discontinued. It was in May, 2016, when I took a train journey from NJP to Delhi, that I read it in one go.

Though it takes a little time at the beginning of the book, to get the grip, a few chapters later, you can’t keep it down.

Rich Amy, who grew up being Amazing Amy of her parents’ book series, and Poor Nick, who moved to North Carthage with his wife, after they lost their jobs narrate the story through their diary entries.

Their entries twist the story unexpectedly, several times. As the title suggests, the book is about a girl, who is ‘gone’. Nick’s wife, who is clever and beautiful at the same time disappears on the morning of their 5th wedding anniversary.

The evidences and Nick’s inappropriate behavior  has all fingers pointing at him, as Amy’s murderer, and Amy has all the sympathy from the public. Nick too, finds ways to prove himself otherwise, by hiring Tanner Bolt, a defense attorney who specializes in defending husbands accused of murdering their spouses.

The question that needs to be answered is whether Nick Dunne is really the killer?

The book ends by teaching the reader many lessons. After Gone Girl’s success as a book, it was adapted into a film with the same title, released in October, 2014.