Thursday, June 27, 2019

SBR Clean Street Food Hub Ahmedabad

SBR Clean Street Food Hub Amdavad

A land owner of 9000 sqm land costing ₹200 CR in the costliest area of Sindhu Bhavan Road of Amdavad preferred profit to food street, invested ₹6 CR on infrastructure on shops and establishment and the street has been awarded the Clean Street Food Hub by the FSSAI, GOI. “If I sell the land, I get good money but what to do with that cash or bank balance. With the food street, the land is protected and it gives happiness when we see people enjoy their evenings with family friends and children and some people get employment”. The owner Ramanbhai Patel justified his investment. His son nick named Bhailoo had a good start up adventure in building the Clean Street Food Hub.

There are 41 food brands under one roof. Very recently this place has picked up as “we serve  everyone and everything”. People from all the ages can satisfy their palate here. There are some brands from the old city and some are the new ventures of the rather urban populace. Opened daily in the evening, at a time 750 people could be served in one session. Weekend there is a foot fall of about 3500 people.

One may start the evening with ‘9834’ serving all fruit related items and their Jamun shot being the cherry on the cake also adds a feather in the cap. ‘Ice Studio’ serves wonderful mocktails with jamun shots as their star product. Some may opt for ‘Sher Di’ which provides fresh sugarcane juice with some flavours you never heard off.  'Tropical Sno' an American brand for shaved ice preparations, which is a relief for summer heat and your thirsty throat, made with RO water and full flavours tastes as good as it looks. ‘Aarya's Grill’ is famous for their pull out bread and Pesto meal. ‘Sizzling Brownie’ as the name suggest serves different types of brownies and some shakes as well. ‘Friesacc’ serves different kind of potato fries, their curly fries is something you must try atleast once.

What do you have now? Chinese, Punjabi, South Indian, Mexican, Italian, Gujarati, Continental?

The stall brings the east to your platter with steamy momos, noodles and Indo-chinese.
With ‘Fondue Nation’ bringing a whole new trend of eating out of a Fondue pot the Malvani fondue is a must have. ‘Just Live’ which prepares a fusion Italian, Mexican and oriental which is all exceptional. ‘Food for Good’ serves Lebanese and authentic Mexican food there stars being burrito bowls and falafel rolls. ‘Belgians Waffwich’ gives Belgian waffle with different chocolates. ‘Indo-chinese Cuisine’ serving the paranthas of India is Apna paratha house as well. ‘Mishmash’ have IndoArabian food and their Manakeesh and Falafel wraps and outstanding hummus. ‘Nachos n More’ stays true to its name and have a wide variety of Nachos and a lot more. ‘Tandoori Sizzle' very popular for there Sizzlers and combos are perfect for a meal for one appetite. 'Stick with it' serving the best possible things that could be served on a stick like waffles and pirate twisters with combination of sauces.

For pizza lovers, ‘Chipotle from BBC’ is burrito bowls joint and most famous being the ‘woodfired pizza’ from BBC only adds a woody flavour to the pizza and is savoured by everyone. ‘Jashuben Shah old pizza’ is familiar to all Amdavadis and serves sandwiches and Gujarati style Pizzas. ‘Mobility’ which has been presenting there healthy fast-food like wheat pizzas, wheat burgers and wheat pastas is a hit amongst the health conscious fast food eaters. Architect husband has designed the grill and his wife is making the pizza. ‘Fat boys’ have the fresh dough pizzas with daily prepared sauces and defining an American Indian food style.

South Express takes you to the ‘South Indian lane’ with their family paper dosa which is five feet long. Gujarati pronounce dosa as Dhonsa, ‘Maharaja Dhonsa’ is one of the oldest name in Ahmedabad dosa lovers and they made their name from Manekchowk, their hit is ‘Ghotala’ Dosa.

‘Mahalaxmi Bhajipav’ again an age old name and know for their consistent taste in Pavbhaji still rules the heart of all food lovers. ‘Meraki’, experimenting with Pavbhaji and providing Kaala Bhaaji with an amazing taste and the ‘Tibbs Frankie’ at the same spot adds on to the menu.

‘Chana Zorr’ is one stall which serves only chana preparations with their outstanding chana tawa masala and Lachcha Parantha which is also a must try in this ‘Food Town’. ‘Social Lounge's barbeque peri peri paneer which is served with all world class Teas is healthy and flavourful, ‘Bowls of Buddha’ bringing food for soul and body have healthy ‘Quinoa salad’ bowls for  a healthy tummy.

‘Chat on chat GB’ brings the North Indian delicacy of chaat and panipuri with their Jaleba (bigger version of jalebi) is another reason why the crowd flocks to this stall.

For Khichadi lovers, ‘House of Khichdi’ from Big Bite cafe(BBC) is serving varieties of khichdi and the must have from that place is is Palak corn khichdi.

After eating all the healthy food, it’s time for best shakes in the town from the ‘Shake Maker’ who have a speciality thick shakes. ‘Asharfilal’ being famous for the best kulfi's in town. ‘Cryolab’ as the name suggest is cryogenic (using nitrogen) providing freshly churned  icecream with your favourite topping is again pleasing to all the senses. ‘Havmor’ being another coveted brand for icecreams and their monthly special flavours satisfy the sweet tooth of Ahmedabad. ‘Candy House’ is for spoiling the kids in sugar candies from all over the world there best is chocolate candies. The ‘Turkcream’ brings the Turkish flavours and style of serving which is also an entertaining thing to watch to Ahmedabad for the first time. ‘Chocolate Room’ which is in fact an Australian food brand which has recently picked it's pace in India and opened  lot _of_ franchises has offered chocolate bomb which is a delight not only for the tounge buy also to your eyes. Going next to pure beans and creams which is the must visit place at ‘SBR Social’ is very renowned for their coffees and home made desserts.

In you are in Amdavad or visiting Amdavad don’t miss the “Clean Street Food Hub SBR”. Kankaria Food Street in the East and SBR in the West are the best places to visit and feel the taste of Amdavad. Don’t miss enjoying evening with family and friends.

15 June 2019

Food of China

Food of China

China is a vast Country with a geographical area of 9.597million sqkm where 1.39 billion people live in 23 provinces, 4 municipalities and two special administrative regions. The food and culture varies amongst Southern-Northern-Western-Eastern China. North and West people like to eat wheat food, such as dumplings noodles and East South people always eat rice. In Zhejiang province, Hangzhou people like to eat rice, light and little sweet food, but east west people in Zhejiang like Spicy food. It’s so variable. Different provinces have different food habits.

Gujarati are fond of Chines food of soups, manchurian, noodles, chilli paneer, fried rice at home. But when traveling to China they carry a belief that Chinese Food in China is not tasty and mostly non vegetarian. As usual, they carry home food of khakhra-ganthia and sukhadi in their bags. In reality, unless they explore the dishes of China, they can’t know the truth. In fact, Chines do eat non-veg food but their non-veg dishes at home have 80% vegetables. Common man in China earns RNB 10000/month, therefore, can’t afford non-veg meal everyday. If one is open to the taste of China, the Chinese vegetarian restaurants can serve varieties of dishes to the veggies at reasonable price.

Different provinces and regions have different food habits in China.

People in Southern China (e.g. Guangdong province and Hong Kong/Macau region) like eating fresh vegetables every day. Due to aquatic products accounting for a higher proportion, they prefer fresh-water fish and fresh seafood. Many people have the habit of drinking morning tea and eating midnight snack. They eat 3-5 meals a day. Their dietary expenditure is big, however, their cooking skill and aesthetic ability in cooking is strong.

Most people in Northern China (e.g. Beijing city, Shandong province and Mongolia) eat three meals a day, predominantly eat pasta, from time to time eat wheat, cereals and rice. Common food there are: steamed bread, noodles, corn congee, pancake, vegetarian dumplings and steamed buns.

Main food for people in South-West of China (e.g. Sichuan province, Yunnan province and Tibet) are rice and glutinous rice. Wheat, corn, sweet potato, broad bean, highland barley, buckwheat, soybean, red millet and sorghum are their preferences as well. Food in South-West of China are generally spicy.

In Mid of China region (Hunan, Hubei and Henan provinces), rice is thestaple food. Part of the mountain like to eat sweet potato, cassava, banana, potato, corn, wheat, sorghum and so on. They are good at making vermicelli, glutinous rice cake and bamboo rice.

Typical cities in Eastern China region (Shanghai city, Zhejiang province, Jiangsu province and Taiwan), people mainly eat rice, seldom for flour and grains. Three meals a day are with equal portion of meat and vegetables, as well as sufficient fruit. Their taste is mostly light, generally the combination of dishes, soup and staple food. The rice bowl from Eastern China is small and the dish plate is large. The tableware is delicate.

People of North-West China (Gansu province, Shanxi province and Sinkiang) usually eat corn and wheat, and also other coarse cereals, such as millet and naked oats etc.

People of North-east China (Jilin province, Liaoning province and Heilongjiang province) eat  staple food made of cereals, rice and wheat. Sorghum rice and sticky bean buns are the most distinctive cuisine. Their favorite vegetables are: chinese cabbage, potato, soybean, vermicelli, cucumber and mushroom. People in north-east of China love to eat white meat, fish, shrimp and exotic animals, with oily and salty taste as preference.

Eight is their lucky number, therefore, if you try the eight course veggie meal of China, you may feel complete with your trip to China. It starts with Kalimeris and walnuts with black fruffle and braised spring bamboo shoot chickpea mash with toon sauce; followed by Fijian style steamed 18 ingredients soup; yellow zucchini mash with mushrooms crackers basil tomato sauce; pan fried black porcini mushroom with white asparagus beans and tofu; seasonal cattail vegetable with bamboo fungus sweet beans and nostoc with corn potato puree; chefs house made maitake patty with kalimeris sesame oil sauce quinoa and orange baby carrot; Stone pot toon leaf black truffle mushroom mixed rice satay mini mushroom. It finishes with vanilla coconut icecream with wheat cake and chocolate cashew. Can you stop your mouth from watering?

8 July 2019

Monday, June 3, 2019



Param Shiva is pure consciousness and massive bliss, omniscience, omnipotent and omnipresent. He is self shining illumination, full and independent himself. He is beyond thought construct, beyond grasp of mind, incapable of being described in words.

He manifests, transform himself into the universe out of his own free will and project the universe on the canvas formed by the divine illumination by displaying his nature as the Shakti. Like a picture reflects in mirror, the universe is manifested in the pure self. He is the Supreme Lord manifests himself without intervention of a second separate entity, by the operation of his ever vibrating divine Shakti-Chiti, his very nature.

He is Shambhu, an ocean of nectar, from which the massive current of the play of the Shakti-Chiti assuming the form of the waves of differences and shapes, thereby revealing the Supreme consciousness in gradual shapes. The knowledge becomes the object of knowledge. His trident is his Shakti, the power of will, knowledge and action hold in perfect equilibrium.

His Shakti takes five different expressions: Chiti Shakti (consciousness), Ananda Shakti (bliss), Iccha Shakti (volition), Jnana Shakti (knowledge) and Kriya Shakti (action).

Chiti Shakti, the divine Shakti that enables the Supreme Lord to reveal himself. By its power, he shines forth alone, experiencing himself as the pure ‘I’.

Ananda Shakti by which the Supreme Lord is full in himself, always satisfied and resting in himself.

Iccha Shakti through which the Supreme Lord has unlimited will to create.

Jnana Shakti by which the objects of the universe, manifestations of his self, are made conscious.

Kriya Shakti by which the Supreme Lord is able to manifest all of his intentions, manifest himself as each and every form during his creative activity.

The cycle of divine play of Shiva through his divine Shakti, moves by self limitation (nigraha), creation (sristi), sustenance (sthiti), absorption-cosmic destruction (samhara) and bestowal of grace (anugraha) putting an end to manifestation. Shiva + Shakti = manifestation.

There are 36 constituents, steps of descent into creation. Each higher is the cause of lower. Each higher is relatively more subtle than its next lower. The first 5 constituents are divine Shakti in pure form called Mahamaya and remaining 31 are called Maya (impure-manifestation). The first five are: Shiva, Shakti, Sadashiva, Ishvara, Shuddh Vidhya. The 8 are: Maya, kala kancuka, vidhya kancuka, raga, kala kancuka, niyati kancuka, Purusha, Prakriti. And the 23 are: buddhi (intellect), ahamkara (ego), manas (mind), five organs of knowledge, five motor organs, five subtle elements (शब्द, स्पर्श, रूप, रस, गंध), five gross elements (आकाश, वायु, अग्नि, जल, पृथ्वी).

Thus the universe, with its infinite variety of subjects and objects, is in reality it is the manifestation of Supreme Lord as the universe in his self expansion of his Shakti. Shakti-Durga opens herself out in creation. When she closes herself up or withdraws the universe disappears.

In short, the Supreme Lord manifests himself as universe by means of his free and independent will using his own Shakti as the material and himself as the screen on which he manifests. Everything manifest is a self manifestation of Supreme Lord and no different from him.

And what is liberation? To attain Supreme ‘I’ ness. To search and restore. He is You, the pure ‘I’, can conceal in bondage or liberate. Before body turns into dead body, till Shakti (life light) is present, one can make a choice. To bond or to liberate through the trident : will, knowledge and action.

3 June 2019

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Hangzhou, a beautiful Elegancy of the World

Hangzhou, a beautiful Elegancy of the World

Venetian merchant and travel adventurer Marco Polo came to China with his father and uncle in 1278. It took 7 years for them to voyage to China.  They stayed in China for 17 years and left in around 1292. It took them 8 years to returned to Italy. Marco stayed in Hangzhou for a year. In his book, ‘Il Milione’ - ‘The Travels of Marco Polo’, he described Hangzhou as the most beautiful elegancy of the world. Somebody asked him, is it so beautiful as you have described? What I wrote is not even the 1/10 of the actual beauty of Hangzhou, he replied. He recorded it the city greater than any in the world as it was a great centre of trade and commerce. Ibn Battuta, Moroccan explorer visited Hangzhau in 1345 described it as the biggest city he had ever seen. He was particularly impressed by the large number of well-crafted and well-painted Chinese wooden ships with colored sails and silk awnings in the canals. Hangzhou was three times a capital of China, one of the seven capitals of China. It is believed that Hangzhou was the largest city in the world from 1180 to 1315 and from 1348 to 1358.

Hangzhou, the capital of China’s Zhejiang province, is the southern terminus of the ancient Grand Canal waterway, which originates in Beijing. It sits at the head of Hangzhou Bay. Its beautiful West Lake (Xihu), is the most popular sight, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, celebrated by poets and artists since 9th Century. It encompasses islands, temples, pavilions, gardens, arched bridges and at southern side the ancient Lyngyin Pagoda. It’s perimeter is 15 km perimeter and the depth is around 1.5 to 2.7, and the Cultural Landscape covers an area of 3,323 hectares. There are two causeway across the lake. Buddhism gift of India to China, the Lotus flowers in the lake blossom in July in pink and white colours. People eat stems of lotus plant as vegetables and use leaves for cooking rice. Though not really broken but the ‘Broken Bridge’ in the middle of the lake is an attraction centre for the tourist. It is in east-west direction, therefore, when the snow melt due to Sunlight from the east, the western part of the bridge remains white with the snow cover, the Sun light creates an illusion of break of the bridge, therefore, called the broken bridge. The walkways were built with the dragged mud of the lake. On walk ways, there are beautiful Sigamo trees, expand their leaves in Summer to provide sheds and drop their leaves in winter to pass Sunshine over the walkers. They make the streets colourful in autumn when the leaves change colours. Adjacent to the lake includes historical pagodas, cultural sites, and hills, including Phoenix Mountain.

There is Buddhist Monastery Lyngyin, founded by an Indian Buddhist Monk Huili (Chinese name) in 328 AD during Eastern Jin Dynasty. It was reconstructed in 975 AD. The entry to the scenic area starts with a screen wall marked with inscription ‘the western heaven is within reach’. Entire area of Lingyin-Feilai is dotted with historic buildings and artwork, including pagodas, statues and centuries old trees. The largest Pagoda located near the entrance at the foot of Feilai Feng (Flying Peak) called Elder Li’s Pagoda houses the ashes of Huili. The peak is made of limestone and as per the legend, was brought from India, flew to Hangzhou overnight as a demonstration of the omnipotence of Buddhist law. In the cave of Bodhisatva Guanyin, one can see from a certain position ‘one thread of heaven’, a silver line of Sunlight comes from the crack of the ceiling upto the surface. Carved in the Song Dynasty (10-13 Century) with a length of 6.7 metres, the grotto contains relief sculptures depicting stories of eminent monks on their pilgrimages to India for Buddhist scriptures. The first features the story of ‘The White Horse Carrying the Buddhist Sutras” of the 1st Century about two Indian monks Matanga and Dharmaratha, the second features the story of Chinese Monk Zhu Shixing travelled to Western Asia in 3ed Century and the third features the pilgrimage of Master Xuanzang in 7th Century for Buddhist scriptures.

In the temple area, the first idol is of Veda the disciple of Buddha, made from one peace of camphor tree. The deity holds the Sword touching to the ground, suggests warm welcome to the temple but indicates no night stay! In the main temple, the 33.6 metre tall Mahavira Hall houses Statue of Shakyamuni (Buddha) carved from camphor wood is the largest wooden Buddhist statue in China. To the right and left of the Buddha four big size idols of four powerful deities of four directions are placed: to the right, east deity for knowledge and south deity for power; to the left west deity for water and north deity for the wind. There are twelve statues of Buddha’s twelve disciples, each representing twelve signs of zodiac and carries symbol of animal one each: horse, monkey, sheep, rooster dog, pig, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, ox, rat. Gyanyin, Bodhisatva Avalokitesvara and Medicine Buddha Bhsisajyaguru are important halls people visit and pray. The Hall of Five Hundred Arhats shaped like a Swastika, houses the bronze statues of 500 arahats, each carry different looks and seated on a unique ornate seat. At the centre, where the arms of the swastika join, stands a bronze canopy housing statues of four bodhisattvas.

And tired of a day walking, the tourists may relax with the on water live action spectacular show of 90 minutes “Enduring Memories of Hangzhou - Impression West Lake”, featuring a symphony orchestra and dazzling natural night scenes. It was firstly performed during the 2016 G20 Hangzhou Summit. The stage is 3 centimeters beneath the lake's surface. Tea-picking girls dressed in traditional folk clothes, dance of picking tea leaves trippingly in the tender night of the West Lake. Swan Lake appearing on the grand stage is an inventive creation. The ethereal ballet dancers and the miraculous projective images will offer a wonderful viewing experience. Unforgettable Jasmine Flower combines the famous Chinese folk song 'Jasmine Flower' with the Italian Puccini's opera 'Turandot', endowing the classical vocal musical with new western elements. When one Moon lit by electricity is in front of you and the real Moon is on the top of the head and a beautiful romantic dance play makes you feel like sitting in a heaven.

After the show, if you search for vegetarian meal, pick up HDL Restaurant for ‘Hotpot’ vegetarian delicious meal. Veggie may enjoy dishes of tofu, mashroom, fungi, soya stripes, corn, potatoes, etc, boiled in plain water or tomato soup. Rice plate with support dishes of peanuts, chilly sauce, fruits and green tea or barley tea make the meal delicious and complete. For non veggie, wider range of dishes are available. And if you are served by a Chinese host, you may taste many dishes as Chinese are known for ordering many dishes presenting their great hospitality. The food waste in Hangzhau alone may be 20 tones a day. Imagine how much they order, how much they eat and how much they waste! The quality of life of an average Chinese is no less than a rich of India in terms of food and clothing. You may pick up souvenir and other from the articles night market street that opens upto 10 pm. After a tired day, Sangrilla may be a Hotel for the VIPs but Hotel like Grand Wyndham can make the night restful.

Initiated by the reformist policies of Deng Xiaoping of 1978, Hangzhou grew very fast in last 25 years taking advantage of being situated in the Yangtze River Delta, now is one of the most populous city with a population of 6.2 million, also known as the city of opportunities. With the rise of the economy, it has created more jobs, increased population of the city. Service/tourism industry became the largest contributor with more number of hotels, restaurants, shops, tourists. There are hotels where the world leaders come, stay and enjoy the scenic beauty and hospitality of Hangzhou. House of Chiang Kai Shek (Premier of Republic of China 1928-45) is now turned into restaurants of famous brands McDonald and KFC. Apart from tourism, the manufacturing units of the goods adds up the GDP. It is emerging technology hub and home to the e-commerce giant Alibaba (Chinese), also hosted the 11th G20 Sumit in 2016. The administration maintained the environment of the city dust free and clean. Roads are regularly washed with guns mounted under the tankers. It will host Asian Games in 2022. If get a chance, do visit the elegancy of the world to enjoy the scenic beauty, historical monuments, show and hospitality of China.

2 June 2019
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