Happy 2012!

December was a crazy busy month at work. And by crazy, I mean crazy crazy. Late nights. Holiday season and a sales website. New found friends at work. Random fun plans with them. Cocktail parties at work during Christmas week.

That, and the kitchen being renovated.

I ate out a lot, put on a lot of weight, drank like the world was going to end (thankfully, there’s twelve more months to that, not that I’m a believer, but you know…) and never wrote any blog posts. I should burn in the fires of hell for this.

Or burn calories.

I (re)started swimming. New Year’s resolution, much? No. More like swimming in the sea when I was in Goa in the last week of December and realizing how I have zero stamina… being totally out of shape and having to walk into the sea with my arms crossed and having to wear a sarong immediately after I stepped out… being tempted into an all expenses paid trip to Bali this summer if I manage to look good enough to wear a two piece… a couple of weddings I need to attend towards the end of the month and owning some ridiculously sexy blouses which I need to be comfortable in… and some friendly competition.

It’s been three days and I have pulled a muscle in my thigh, have had abs hurts and have fallen asleep before midnight. And no, I’m not complaining. I hope I can keep doing this.

All that said, I took the last week of December off. A day long outing with a friend I’ve come to adore. Two days in Surat where I met family I hadn’t seen in years and got asked a million times why I wasn’t in a serious relationship with anybody. Four days in Goa where I ate only seafood and did a lot of other things I don’t want to write about. And home for New Year’s Eve with my parents.

Ladies vs Ricky Bahl (Yes, I’m atrociously Bolly, like that).
Grilled Kingfish in a delicious Pudina Chutney (A quick recipe below).
Tandoori Tiger Prawns (Simple, ginormous goodness).
Watermelon martinis (There’s something about these cocktails that my father makes).
A bottle of Riesling (Wine, after the longest time. And a mild disaster that involved the cork going into the bottle).
Chicken Biryani (From Kareem’s because I didn’t have the energy to cook after or before the barbeque).
Tipsy parents (How cute!).

Yep, we went all out with the barbeque. Coal, kerosene, fire, skewers. I hadn’t done that at home in a long long time.

I rang in the new year on a beautiful note. I want the year to be awesome. Lots of cooking. Lots of work. Maybe a pay hike. May be an awesome holiday (or two). Lots of swimming. And that two-piece worthy body.

Happy New Year, y’all!

Grilled Kingfish with Mint Chutney

Ingredients:
1 small Kingfish
For the marinade:
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
Juice of half a lime
1 teaspoon garlic paste
For the paste:
1 cup tightly packed (fresh) mint leaves
1 cup tightly packed (fresh) coriander leaves
Juice of half a lime
1 green chilly

Method:
1. Take the head and the tail of the fish off, if you have a problem with those body parts. Clean the fish thoroughly and make diagonal slits in the body of the fish (about four or five on each side).
2. Rub the fish with the salt, the turmeric powder and the garlic paste and let it marinate for a couple of hours.
3. Grind the ingredients for the paste into a thick paste, using a little bit of water.
4. Apply liberally to both sides of the fish and cook on a mesh or foil over charcoal (or in the oven) for about fifteen minutes on each side.

Tandoori Tiger Prawns:

Ingredients:
About 18 tiger prawns (a kilo of prawns)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
Juice of half a lime
1 teaspoon garlic paste
1 teaspoon ginger paste
1 teaspoon Tandoori Masala

Method:
1. Behead the prawns. Yes, criminals like tiger shrimp deserve no other punishment.
2. De-vein them too. And clean them in any other way you deem necessary. I like to leave the tails on, so that I can hold on to them when I eat them. (Secret: I love eating the tail too. I don’t know if it’s something one should do, though.)
3. Marinate the prawns using the ingredients above, for a couple of hours.
4. Stick the prawns into skewers and cook over charcoal for about 10 minutes (or until done). Or toss them into a shallow pan with minimum oil, if you don’t have a barbeque set up.

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