If I stay away from the computer for too long then I feel hesitant to come back and blog..it's like entering a party late and hoping you haven't missed out on the happenings.
I had another exam to cover last week and I had a blogging ban by my better half so resisted spending all my online time surfing aimlessly. So I wrote anyway but put all my thoughts into draft, saving it with the intention of blogging everyday! This week, kept wondering which one to start with and hesitated...finally got tired of seeing the same post and decided to change it before people unsubscribe to my feed burner!
The weather is changing for the better and the days are getting longer, meaning I am out of the house longer... taking the kids to their myriad activities and then to the park etc..Dinner seems to come in the way of savoring the sunlight. It's so beautiful all around now... with all the dry dead brushes and bare branches all covered with flowers and leaves.
When there is so much greenery sprouting around, it's hard to sit down and put it into words. The lushness of the new leaves, the soft carpets of the lawns, the feathery leaves on the trees....the light green reminds me of the diminishing paddy fields but only just so.. the green in Kerala is a vivid green, contrasting so deeply with the red laterite soil that it stays in the mind long after the image has faded.
Laterite is quarried and cut into blocks and used as brickstones for house-building. They are used for rough walls between properties and for lining wells and ponds. The laterite is a soft stone with surface texture and it allows the roots of the plants to penetrate it, becoming a planting bed if the surface is not closed with plaster. When the walls are broken down, the blocks are crumbled and worked back into the earth
The rambling vines and undergrowth cover every inch of the laterite walls to create a symphony of varying shades of green and red. The undergrowth is always renewing itself and the color is always lush. Truly an organic and sustainable building material!!!
Here in two more weeks, the lushness will give away to a dull green, as if the leaves were forever there and the greenery will fade into the background. The lawns will slowly reveal what they really are.. just dry wild grass forced into submission by weekly (expensive) mowing and endless watering...the trappings of suburbia.
But let's enjoy the intermittent spring showers and new growth it brings. What's the best way to celebrate this cool weather? Maybe fry up some fritters and a cup of tea...hmm...maybe masala tea. These plantain fritters can be made with regular bananas too. I end up making this whenever I buy plantains and they get too ripe too soon.
You will need:
Fully ripe blackish colored plantains-2
All Purpose Unbleached Flour (Maida)-1 cup
Rice flour (optional)- 1 tbsp
Kalonji/Onion Seeds - a pinch
Water - 1/4 cup
Salt -a very small pinch.
Oil - for frying
1. Peel and cut the ripe banana into 2 sections. (Wash your hands well if you are using hands.) Then smash the banana with your hands into a mushy mess. It should have some lumps left for texture and should not be a puree. This is fun.... you could even get your kids to do it. They enjoy the messiness of the banana squirting thru the fingers.
2. Mix all the dry ingredients together and then add water slowly while stirring to make a smooth paste. It should be lump free and not too watery. If it does become watery, add a little more flour. Add the banana and mix it well.
3. Heat oil in a skillet. You could fry this in a Unniappam chatti/Aebleskiver Pan too.
4. Slowly slide one spoonful/dollop of the banana mix into the oil.You could fry 4 or 5 at a time based on the size of your pan. Deep fry on medium heat till it turns a golden brown. Make sure the oil is hot before adding the batter. (It's hot if you put a drop of the batter and it rises to the top in a second.)If the oil is not hot enough, the fritters will absorb too much oil. Once it heats up, you could reduce it to medium heat. Drain onto paper towels and serve.