Monday, 5 June 2017

Perfect, Simple Chicken Masala Recipe

Chicken Curry Recipe

Chicken- 1 Kg
Onion- 350 Gm
Tomato- Depends on taste or Thick Curd- 3 TSp
Red chilli powder- 1.5 TSp
Turmeric powder- 1 TSp
Coriander- 1.5 TSp
Kashmiri chilli powder- 1 TSp
Garam masala powder- 1 TSp
Chicken masala powder- 2 TSp
Tejpatta- 2 leaves
Dalchini- 2 to 3 small pieces
Clove- 4 to 5
Dry whole red chilly- 2 to 3
Garlic and ginger paste- 2 TSp
Green coriander leaves
Salt
Mustard oil- 50 Gm
Ghee- 2 TSp

Step 1- Marination

Wash the chicken and strain for few minutes to ensure it's not wet.
Put chicken in a bowl and mix red chilly, turmeric, salt and curd thoroughly. Let it settle for marination in refrigerator (don't deep fridge). Marination should happen for at least 2 hours.

Step 2- Cooking

Take a handi or kadhai and heat oil and ghee.
Put tejpatta, dry red chilly, dalchini and clove and then add finely chopped onions. Saute it till onions turn pink to golden in colour.
Add all spices and saute for 4-5 minutes.
Add chicken and mix it well to ensure spices are applied thoroughly on chicken pieces.
Cover the vessel with lid and put the flame on low to medium for 5 minutes. Saute it a little and put the flame on low and cook it for 15 minutes more.
Add coriander leaves and mix.
Now add around 150 ml water, mix it delicately, cover with the lid again and cook on low flame for another 20-25 minutes or till the time chicken becomes soft and onion gets melt completely and produces a firm gravy.

Chicken is ready to serve now. Can add 2 TSp butter if wish to.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Uber- The story of deteriorating standards

Uber has been a hit in India ever since it launched its service. However, there are instances where Uber has failed to maintain certain standards in terms of quality of cars and drivers they rope in for the business. Now days, many of the cars are found poorly maintained and quite dirty. Even the behavior and attitude of the drivers are deteriorating. Uber really doesn't care about the age of the car, it's maintenance schedule done by owner/ driver and the way drivers keep the car. Currently, apart from the feedback given by the rider, Uber doesn’t have any mechanism or process in place to check the quality of service given by the drivers.

I recently had some ugly experience when I booked a cab from Delhi airport to Gurgaon. This was so far the worst experience with Uber. The driver doesn't deserve to be an Uber driver. The car was dirty, noisy and rattling. I guess Uber has no concern with the quality of cars being used now. The driver was unprofessional, driving rash with annoying honking.

When the ride started, he was using Facebook and when I asked him to stop, he replied "it's not a big deal and it should be fine with me". Further, he started calling him someone and when I warned him,  I got the same casual reply. He didn't pulled up the door windows and started the AC till the time I reminded him again and again. He was chewing pan or gutkha while driving which was clear from the foul smell in car. I also suspect that he was drunk seeing his overall behavior. He was continuously opening the gate of driver side while car was cruising at high speed to spit out the pan masala.

Such things are really scary and doesn't differentiate an auto from an Uber cab. It compromises the safety of passengers big time.

Initially, I thought not to post any complaints about the episode but this should serve as an example to all and many others like us should not compromise their safety.

The good part is that I reached home safely although the ride was not at all comfortable.


I highlighted the matter to Uber and they refunded the amount after basic enquiry. But, I really hope, Uber will take necessary action against such drivers as this is not what we pay for while hiring Uber.

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Important aspects and observations behind motor insurance claims ratio

Few important observations in insurance loss ratio across different vehicles:

 

1. Claims ratio is driven by many factors including usage pattern, popularity, demand in terms of specific geographical areas, spares cost, child parts availability, spares availability in after market, type of end users, safety measures & equipment used in car.

2. Diesel cars of same size/segment as compared with petrol cars tend to ply more on roads and hence draw a higher claims ratio (by approx. 5-7%).

3. There are cars where the similar platform is used to make hatch back and notch back (sub 4 meter car) which keeps many body spares common in both hatch a well as the notch back models. It’s generally seen in such cars that hatch will have a higher claims ratio (approx. 5-8%) considering the fact that the buyer belongs to similar category and repair cost almost remains same in both hatch and notch back. However, hatch back models is charged lower insurance premium due to lower ex showroom cost which results into higher claims ratio.

4. Cars will higher parked population seems to draw slightly lower claims ratio as there are repair facilities available in open markets as well for more popular cars and spares tend to cost lesser as compared with lesser popular cars. Also, the indigenous production impacts the overall loss ratio on positive side.

5. Normally, small cars or entry level cars attract higher claims frequency since mostly buyers are first time buyers and are likely to increase the collision ratio.

6. Cars bigger in length are on many occasions being chauffeur driven keep the risk at lower side as it completely avoids the practices like using mobile while driving or any such practices. Also, city commuters with chauffer driven cars seems to have far lesser total loss, theft and third party loss incidences.

7. Few models being frequently used in commercial purpose like Innova and Tavera have surprisingly lesser claims ratio in terms of own damage claims, however, theft drives the losses to higher side in such models.

8. It’s normally difficult to establish the loss ratios in models which are too new or not sold much in market. As a result, the trend for such models might change over time.

Effect of demonitization on general insurance business in India


New motor insurance business: Since, new motor insurance business is directly related to the new car sales it has seen its impact accordingly. In A class cities mostly insurance companies were short of their targets by 12 to 15%. In B class cities where rotation of cash is more prominent a negative impact of 7 to 10% has been reported by almost all insurers. PSUs where business is significant from B and C class cities have seen an overall impact of around 12-15%.

 

Renewals-Motor: The impact in A class cities has been very limited as most of the insurers have performed at above 90% expected levels. Availability of e-payments and already being widely used are the reasons that renewals are not much affected in A class cities. B and C class cities have seen delayed renewals and the impact has been 20 to 22% on negative side.

 

Non-Motor insurance: Health insurance has seen impact on new acquisition side and targets were short by as high as 25% in B and C class cities. A class cities have seen the impact of 15%. Renewals are not affected much due to nature of product.

 

Other line of business: Rural market has been under impact and PSUs have suffered due to the same as seen in many products like agricultural, small ticket personal accident covers, cattle insurance and agriculture insurance have seen the impact.

 

In totality, the actual impact can be measured in next 2-3 months as there may be delayed purchase decision which may actually come into account once the situation becomes normal. Still, industry can’t deny the impact of 15% impact on business across the cities and segments.

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Gluten Free Dairy Free Cornmeal Bread Recipe

When ‘Thanksgiving’ and lot of other festivals are around the corner, it’s always puzzling to find out the delicacies which are healthy, tasty and worth appreciating the looks. If you are looking for a simple and less time-consuming dish then Gluten Free and Dairy Free Cornbread can be a nice tempting idea to gain applauds from kids as well as adults. Serving this dish with a bowl of hot chilli will further add perfection to it. Any gluten free bread can be used (you can use your own home-made bread too but it is best avoided if you are not an expert) along with cornbread stuffing as it gives a nice crumb to hold together perfectly. If you love to make it little moist, full of nice scent and shiny in texture then use a little bit of coconut oil. Using honey instead of sugar and topping it with maple syrup will even make it better.

Ingredients 
  •  1 cup Almond milk or any other non-dairy milk
  •  ¾ cup Yellow cornmeal (medium grind)
  •  ¾ cup Corn flour 
  •  ¼ cup Rice flour (sweetly flavoured) 
  •  1 tablespoon Organic sugar or honey or as per taste
  •  ½ teaspoon White table salt
  •  3 teaspoons Baking powder
  •  2 tablespoons Edible coconut oil (you can use a mix of coconut oil and any other vegetable refined oil as well)
 Procedure
  •   First of all, preheat the micro oven to 400 degrees.
  •  Take a small bowl and mix together milk, eggs or curd and oil.
  •  In a medium bowl, mix together cornmeal, sugar or honey, corn flour, sweet rice flour, baking powder and salt.
  •  Now, mix the ingredients of both the bowls (dry and wet ingredients) and stir well without leaving any lumps.
  •  Take a thoroughly greased pan (suitable for cooking in the oven) and pour the mixture into it.
  •  Bake for 20 to 22 minutes or until a knife or toothpick comes out clean.
 Your gluten free dairy free cornbread is ready to serve. It looks nice, smells nice and is so tempting. Top of it, no one can tell you what exactly is missing from it.
 Enjoy!

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

10 Days Weight Loss Diet Plan

Assuming that there is a gathering of 100 corporate professionals and suddenly someone is asking that how many of you are interested to know about a quick, simple and easy to follow a 10 days weight loss program that could make you look smarter. So, what would be the probable response? Try it out in small or big gathering of any class of society or on any occasion, the response would be a big yes from many.

This is how we are placed today in our life. We are living a fast paced life but many of us are ignoring the serious repercussions of a dis-balanced life style, in short, an unhealthy life style. As a result, several diseases, primarily called life style diseases these days like arthritis, diabetes, osteoporosis, hypertension, obesity, (the list is long), etc. have become an unwelcomed, disliked but unavoidable part of our day to day life.

Are we earning money for our family, for having fun or for simply paying hospital bills after crossing 40-45 years of age?

Although, there is no alternative of a healthy life style and seriousness towards maintaining good health, still there are numerous people who are interested to find out quick, simple and easy to follow diet plans to get rid of some extra weight to look better and feel lighter. However, reducing extra weight through any diet plan alone is not comparable with the routine that embeds light to moderate exercise for 4-5 times a week.

Anyway, let’s concentrate on the main topic.

Is it actually possible to get rid of few extra kilograms of weight by simply following a diet plan only for 10 days?

Will it make you starve and will it make you feel weak and will it make you sick?

Will it have any side effect?

The questions are many but the answer is very simple, as long as you are not suffering from any special medical condition, this special 10 days diet plan will only make you feel better and lighter after 10 days.Secondly, this diet plan does not promise any miracle like several such diet plans available on numerous webpages claiming to make you lose up to 10-15 pounds or sometimes even more.

This 10 days diet plan simply helps you lose some body weight that you have put on during some of the weekend munching and stuffing with your favorite dishes or those extra kilos that you have gained during your recent parties.

Irrespective of the reasons best known to you due to which you have put on weight, one thing is very sure that you are going to feel better after 10 days.

So, after all these blabbering, what exactly is this diet plan?

ARE YOU READY? Here we go.

BREAKFAST

Option 1: 1 apple, 1 banana, 1-2 pieces of whole wheat bread and 100 grams low fat curd.

Option 2: 2 boiled eggs without yolk, one medium size boiled or baked potato and 200 ml low fat milk.

Option 3: 1 bowl of corn flakes with low fat milk (without extra sugar) and 150 grams pineapple.

Option 4: 1 bowl of puffed rice or roasted poha, 1 orange and 100 grams low fat curd.

Option 5: 1 boiled sweet potato, 1 bowl of sprouted grains of your choice and 200 ml low fat milk.

PRE-LUNCH MEAL (to be taken 2 hours before lunch):

Option 1: 1 orange and a handful of any roasted snack like black gram or boiled corn. Avoid too much use of salt and spices.

Option 2: 200 grams pineapple and 2-3 digestive or marie biscuits

Option 3: 1 bowl of sprouted grains of your choice

Option 4: 1 banana and a medium bowl of roasted pop corn

Option 5: 1 guava and 150 ml fruit juice of your choice (don’t add extra sugar or salt)

LUNCH

Option 1: 2 whole wheat or multigrain chapattis, 1/2 bowl pulse of your choice, 1 bowl of green vegetable (no potato) and cucumber salad.

Option 2: 1 medium bowl of brown rice, 1/2 bowl pulse of your choice, 1 bowl of green vegetable (no potato) and tomato salad.

Option 3: 1 medium bowl of tomato pasta (no cream or cheese to be added) and tomato or cucumber salad.

EVENING SNACK (to be taken 2 hours before dinner)

3-4 biscuits of any whole grain of your choice and green tea with lime, ginger and honey.

DINNER

1 whole grain chapatti, 1 bowl green vegetable and salad of your choice.

POINTS TO REMEMBER

Take a glass of warm water every morning with 2 tea spoons of honey and 2 tea spoons of fresh lemon juice. Also drink one more glass of warm water along with this.Never skip breakfast or any of the planned meals.Drink at least 10-12 glass of water. Avoid drinking too much of cold water.Prefer using olive oil or any other oil with omega 3 fatty acid or fish oil. Don’t use more than 2-3 tea spoons of oil per day. Don’t use extra spice, salt or sugar (prefer using sugar free instead of normal sugar) in your meals.This diet plan consists of meals broken into smaller proportions and has to be consumed in the given proportions only. Don’t combine any of the two or more meals just to complete the meals.Options for meals are given to ensure availability of tasty options. Don’t repeat any of the meal options consistently for two days.If you feel hunger, simply add skimmed milk, any fruit of your choice or fresh fruit juice in any of your meals. Don’t add this more than once or twice a day.As mentioned earlier, don’t expect any miracle out of this diet plan. You can simply boost your fitness goals by adding this balanced diet plan in your routine. Results may vary from individual to individual and the individual is himself responsible for any specific side-effect or allergy from any of the given food items here.Add some light to moderate exercise or any sports in your routine at least 4 times a week. It will ensure that your body consistently walks on the path of enhancing your fitness and well-being.If you have any doubt about the given diet plan, please consult your Doctor before starting it so that any consequences due to any specific medical condition does not appear.

All the best! See you lighter and fitter after 10 days!

Post your feedback and results.

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Why should you do digital detox session?

Imagine a situation when the current generation kids grow up and we tell them that in our childhood there were no mobile, internet or the kind of gadgets we use today. Our Gen-Y kids will be surprised and may even laugh at the situation.

Since, technology has invaded our life and has completely taken over our lifestyle, it's nearly difficult to believe that we could survive without technology few decades back. Today, kids prefer to get glued to the couch and do indoor activities which are primarily technology based.

Out door games have been replaced by play stations, meeting friends have been replaced by video chats, summer vacations are mostly confined to staying within house and doing things on mobile and internet. Search engines like Google are definitely more dominant today as compared with books.

Now friendship means getting connected on social networking websites. Now days, mostly people go on holidays and click photographs primarily to share on social networking. As I mentioned in one of my earlier blogs, today participation has a more dominating purpose than actual contribution in any incidence or event.

What is to blame for? Is it technology alone, simply not. A lot more credit goes to our over ambitious, fast paced and complicated lifestyle which has created a dis-balance between living and enjoying the life. Today, we earn but fail to enjoy. We prefer pretending to enjoy our life and to show off that our life is much more interesting and happening than what it actually is.

We can't ignore that technology has encroached our life, physical space has reduced and storage devices have become larger in capacity. Today, we simply get panic if our mobile loses its network or battery starts draining as if we are running out of oxygen for breathing. Our devices getting virus is not lesser painstaking than a real heart attack now. Internet data pack getting exhausted feels like losing blood platelets.

While, technology is really important and it's difficult to give this away completely, still, we should maintain some minimum distance and do away with engrossing technological devices during non-working hours and holidays. We should get some freedom from digital intoxication for our loving family. If our kids are becoming addicted of it, the onus is completely on us to not let them become engrossed with devices too much.

Ultimately, we are born humans and better remain like this instead of becoming slaves in hand of digital devices.

Friday, 16 September 2016

Online scam behind pet adoption- Beware

When I brought my first Labrador home, I had no idea that I will like it so much that I would like to have other dogs in my house. As I wanted to have another one in my house, I searched online for available pets for adoption and soon I found that there are plenty, however, it's really difficult to figure out the genuine availability for adoption.

I searched on Quikr.com as well and was hooked on with an add which read about available Maltese for adoption. I tried contacting him through given email ID and soon after interacting with him through email I developed a feeling that he could be a fraud. I noticed a lot of adds like this which promises to give you exotic pets free of cost but, there are few hidden things which you should look into before getting hooked up so much.

Beware of these important points.

1. They will call themselves foreigners.
2. They will send you a long attractive email to lure you with details of their pets.
3. They will ask you to provide all details like address, nearest airport, mobile, etc.
4. They will never provide their WhatsApp number.
5. They prefer contacting through Facebook chat and you will notice that their Facebook account is recently created just to fool people.
6. Finally, they will ask you to pay 50% advance of courier charges and they will provide you the account details of an Indian. If you further ask them, they will tell you that he is his friend who is helping him settle down in India. If you ask his friend's number, he will be silent.

Many pet lovers may get lured in to deposit the advance as it looks so attractive to get the exotic breeds almost free but it's a big scam going on.

One of such incidences happened with me recently where I was about to pay the 50% advance but then I thought of the above mentioned points and kept away from this.

You can see the copy of email conversation here for reference and to spread awareness.


Hi,
I want to adopt your Maltese. I am in Gurgaon. How and where can we meet.
Thanks,
Shashank


I am presently in Kerala and will like to know when you want to take your own and which of the puppies will you want to get ?


I want to take the Maltese. How can you deliver it to Gurgaon.


i will use a local delivery agency to do the delivery so will like to know how soon that can be done and for the delivery i shall need the following
Your complete names, Your home or work address for the delivery, city and zip code, phone numbers and, nearest airport to your location
with these documents i shall be able to put all paper works in place and enable the delivery agency to located your home with the puppy so if you are ready today then provide these information so i can start now


Shashank Srivastava
Address- XXXXXXXXXXXX
Postal Code- XXXXXX
Nearest Airport- XXXXXX
Mobile- +91-XXXXXXXXXX


Ok good I will also like to inform you that you shall be required to deposit 50% of the payment before delivery takes place and the other 50% after delivery if you are ready to receive the puppy today let me know so I will Send you bank details where you shall make the deposit


I know it's a trap. I can't pay the money in advance. Try fooling someone else.


What are you talking of that it is a trap i am not forcing you to take my puppy okay you can as well look somewhere else.


What's the guarantee that you will not run away after taking advance.


why would i run when you have my bank details that i can be traced with and besides how much are we even talking of that one can run with


Ok. Send me details. Also send me the pictures of puppy and its certificate if any. Don't mind, I have lost money like this earlier.

when do you want to make the deposit ?


Tomorrow


Sorry I couldn't get back to you earlier was so busy and got Back so late this is the account details
Icici bank
Acc Name..Ravindra kumar
account no-097501512081
IFSC code-ICIC0000975


Whats your WhatsApp no


I don't use whatsapp here but we can chat on Facebook if you wish


Any mobile number?


Sorry I have been busy throughout you can reach me on +14782175182


Any Indian number?


I don't have an Indian number


But, how do you have an Indian account?


The account is that of a friend who ah as been helping me here since I came. You know I am not legible to have an account here


Can I have his number


You have my number since you are trading with me so it is not proper for me to give you his number


Hey, do one thing, I will personally travel to Kerala and take the puppy. I have official visits to Kerala in coming days. Can I get your address?

NOW, HE IS SILENT

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

The New Age Transformation of Online and Offline News

We have seen huge transformation in news and media during last couple of decades and especially after the encroachment of social networking, search engines like Google and chat machines like WhatsApp.

Not all the news sources today we see are authentic or they may be simply pretending to be authentic. If we spare them from the debate of being authentic or not, it remains a big question whether or not mostly news are useful and relevant.

Today, before referring an online or offline source we spend much more time in establishing its authenticity which was not the case few years back.

So, why are we forced to raise this topic? Some of the useless or lesser relevant news topics today are like, 'Someone has broken their relationship because her fiancee doesn't like pets' OR 'An actor is endorsing something useful or meaningless or he is not endorsing something these days' OR 'someone is worshiping in temple' OR 'someone is surviving only on tea for years' OR 'monkeys are encroaching a college's campus' OR 'an actor/ actress is wearing red dress instead of blue' OR BLAH BLAH BLAH.

So, this is what we read in news papers, magazines or mostly online news sources. Media is inclined to publish and most importantly inclined to make popular what sounds interesting irrespective of the fact whether or not it's important and relevant. Media seriously can make or break an event or personality and they are smart enough to play with this. TRP is definitely a dominating and foremost purpose behind any effort these days. Journalism has been redefined drastically and has affected our life in every aspect.

Even, it's difficult to find anything interesting and relevant in physically printed news papers these days which once used to be a must watch and more importantly relevant watch for all age groups. News papers no longer are daily dosage of General Awareness, it has become a daily dosage of interesting facts and facts which drive our thoughts and influence our life.

Sometimes, social networking like Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp seem to be better source of quick anecdotes of important happenings. However, these also dominate the pre and post event discussions. For example, winning a medal in Olympics may be a news for a bunch of audience but what was trolling on Twitter before and after winning or losing that medal became more highlighted.

There is no doubt in the fact that sometimes mostly people press the like, dislike or share button without reading the whole topic and all that they want to ensure that they are the part of the event or incidence.

TODAY, PARTICIPATION HAS BECOME FAR MORE IMPORTANT THAN CONTRIBUTION AND THE TREND CONTINUES.

Besides, the over abundance of available information, quality of editing and language are definitely missing out largely from most of the online and offline sources, which is a real concern for the end reader.

We can't ignore the fact that what we want to make famous or infamous today has become much more convenient and technological, but things which are really important lose out its sheen sometimes in the over crowded and over flooded regime of sharing information.

Sunday, 11 September 2016

Amazing creativity with iPhones



This is something really amazing I have found on web. Simply amazing creativity with iPhones. A must watch.