Sunday, December 04, 2016

Creators of the Big Mac & General Tso's Chicken have died this week both aged 98

As I finished reading the Washington Post this morning, my attention was drawn to this news that the chef who created General Tso's Chicken Peng Chang-kuei dies in Taipei, Taiwan at the age of 98 (Washington post says 97 but BBC says 98)
  

As BBC noted Mr Peng's demise comes in the same week as that of Michael "Jim" Delligatti, father of the McDonald's Big Mac, who was also 98.


General Tso's Chicken: I am not a big fan of General Tso's chicken due to the sweetness, but occasionally do order it out like this one time in July this year at the Reren DC in Chinatown.
The dish was created in 1952 in Taipei for a banquet given in the honor of a visiting US Navy Admiral, Arthur Radford and named after a 19th century warrior Hunan General Zuo Zongtang.

McDonald's Big Mac

Loved this quote from the Wall Street Journal 
"Jim Delligatti, the McDonald’s Corp. franchisee who created the Big Mac, died Monday at the age of 98. His story is a reminder that great business innovations often have nothing to do with high technology but always have a lot to do with satisfying the customer."
While the mothership (Read McDonald's HQ) wasn't happy about this creation, customers loved the this 1967 creation - "two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun,” WSJ also notes that innovation need not be reserved just for Silicon Valley and can come from Uniontown, PA where Delligati owned the franchise. Sadly it does not appear that Jim Delegatti made any money from this creation.

I am not a fan of the Big Mac either. I prefer the Chicken Maharaja Burger or the McAloo Tikki burger sold only in the Indian outlets of McDonalds.






Sunday, November 20, 2016

Making Indian Food Cool - Sanjeev Kapoor on CNN

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Montgomery County's First Farm Brewery -Milkhouse Brewery at Stillpoint Farm

Saturday, September 03, 2016

Oh Coconut! - Skinny & Co. Coconut Oil innovates a natural product


I have a long history with coconut oil, and when my friend Chris Abraham mentioned that he was working  with  Skinny & Co. Coconut Oil, I could not resist  the temptation to try out the products.

Growing up in India, our family believed in the healthy properties of coconut oil and massaging coconut oil into our hair was a daily ritual. Coconut is also a staple ingredient both in the raw form and as a cooking medium in many southern states of India. In Potomac, Maryland our family is having a revival in using coconut oil both as a natural skin moisturizer and as a healthy hair conditioner.
Coconut Oil
I sampled 4 products from Skinny & Co. Coconut Oil.
  • Oil Pull
  • Body Butter
  • Facial Oil
  • Sugar scrub
  • Coconut Oil
If you are familiar with oil pulling , this is a an ancient Indian Ayurvedic  technique where you swirl the oil in your mouth  and spit the oil out after a few minutes. Our ancestors believed that the oil detoxified the mouth and killed the bacteria. With Skinny & Co. Coconut Oil they added a flavor of menthol to their product that makes it better.

As a kid it took me a long time to believe that the beautiful people I admired had the help of cosmetics and beauty products to look their best. I had presumed that they were born that way. How naive! The Facial Oil from Skinny & Co. Coconut Oil  I am pretty sure will make your face look much smoother and healthier. I would recommend applying before bed and waking up refreshed.

The Body Butter is enriched with almond oil and I used it a as a after shave application to get a nice and smooth , comforting facial feeling.

I am very familiar with Coconut Oil  and if you notice my hair shine in my selfie's , it's getting healthier with coconut oil in my hair. Recently watching the movie - Big Fat Greek Wedding 3 - there is a conversation about how Greek men have oil in their hair. I bet they know something we don't and in the case of India we use coconut oil instead of olive oil.


Coconut in any form is healthy. I have yet to try the Sugar Scrub and that will the topic for another post. While living in India, one of the rituals in our home was to have a coconut oil bath, where we would apply coconut oil all over the body and then wait for 20 to 30 minutes and then have a nice hot water bath. Growing up I remember the whole process made me sleep very well. The properties of the oil and the body's delight at being touched with the oil. I am looking forward to using the sugar scrub soon.

Skinny and Co are definitely on the right track , introducing coconut oil to us (in my case re-introducing). Go ahead and try their products and let us know what you think.

Things they could improve:

a) Have the text much larger  on the bottles or send a nice booklet along with the product as the text is hard to read
b) Coconut Oil is transparent and as you apply it if any of the oil falls on the counter, you may not notice it. Would recommend a container with a spout to prevent drips.
c) Adding coconut oil to tea or coffee. I did not try this. wonder if they should have a coconut flavored coffee?

Note: As mentioned in the beginning of the post, I received free samples of the product but this did not influence my opinion in this piece.









Saturday, June 25, 2016

2016 City of Rockville Farmers Market Gets Even More Exciting

Farmers' markets are getting exciting. It's not just about vegetables anymore. Today I chanced upon two farm breweries doing wine tasting at the Rockville Farmers Market.

A photo posted by Shashi Bellamkonda (@shashib) on
And
A photo posted by Shashi Bellamkonda (@shashib) on
Every third weekend of the month I am used to seeing the Elk Run Vineyards ( I highly recommend their Red Door wine)

Viva! Elk Run Vineyards in Maryland

A photo posted by Shashi Bellamkonda (@shashib) on


This year we have an new entrant "The Salt Cave"

New #smallbiz discovered this weekend BethesdaSaltCave.com

A photo posted by Shashi Bellamkonda (@shashib) on

According to the Washington Post "been a place where true believers could make their weekly investment in the future of local and sustainable agriculture." But times are changing "These new farmers market visitors tend to be young. They arrive for a bite or some booze, maybe a pizza at Red Zebra or a bottle of gin from One Eight Distilling. They’re “shopping with the eyes,” says Lester, “and they don’t care about the season"
Rockville Farmers is awesome, get your friends to hang out and have green juice freshly made or lunch from the Amish stall or coffee from Zekes Coffee, get your fill of Kale or purple cauliflower and make a speicla Aloo gobi

Cauliflower Calling!

A photo posted by Shashi Bellamkonda (@shashib) on

Saturday, March 05, 2016

Wine Tasting From Planet Wine Shop March 26th

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Another reason to watch TV tonight - DCs own Chef Vinod Debuts on Food Network


Many of you know Chef Vinod from Indique (One of the best Indian restaurants in the DC area).Tonight is his big debut on Food Network, for the show #BeatBobbyFlay. Hope you will watch and cheer #teamvinod 

Want to spread some online cheer- here is a quick status update for you.

"I will be cheering for DC's own Chef @kvinod of Indique in @FoodNetwork #BeatBobbyFlay tonight http://b.shashi.co/teamvinod