Monday, April 30, 2012

Steam Up to rise

April 30th 2012

For the friends who complained why did My first Idly take this long to come, I need to confess that I have been spending most of my hours with real-time modernizers in a closed circuit air-conditioned environment where Idlys were hard to cook. Contemplating on the batter of Idlys would be the last thing welcome on the floor, even though a lot of cooking, frying and serving predisposed matters, does happen  already quite commonly without anyone’s control. I informed myself several times and then learned it as a good student of Invention School that in order to survive I must continually Innovate-technologically(there's a catch in it) and not trade the time writing about...Idlys. I am an engineer whose job is to ‘build, certify, release and do it enormously innovatively. I must worry about quality of delivery and customer experience and please….never about Idlys, as a bureaucrat revealingly advised me one day.

However in my teensy own time I managed to think about what it takes to make fluffy sound Idlys– it's a good proportion of ingredients, just the right grinding and fermentation and a good amount of steaming.
I sneaked into the imagination of my brilliant futuristic world – Consumer, Product, Market and Technology paradigm, how would that look from the tip of the Idly! If I were a sales soul I would have sliced tartlets off it, but I weren’t so I took my own-mannered, layered approach. I imagined a pantry where a punctilious mix was made of four Ps, Market was the grinder, Technology the batter, Innovation was the steam and you already know what was being dished up to the end user. My appetite for process delineation, product examination and user gratification was growing high and up….until I wondered why the Idlys still coming out flat.

I investigated myself, am I doing it right way – right postulation, right math and right reading? Then I took a quick trip of my milieu. Do I have the exact ingredients in place – no, I have a bizzare mix of maze and grams because that's all I had available in the kitchenette I was put up to keep my teamwork on. Did the other appointee grind them well – no, grinding was noisy and disruptive, fermentation....was underdone and time-to-steam was overdone, to the extent of scorching ….Pheww!

No wonder its flat and lifeless this time, just a wrong experiment and the cottony bubbly Idlys have gone for toss. I am not sad and I don’t worry, after all Idlys have come a long way and there is an innate beauty in flatness, everyone knows but few remember what we see as flat under the foot is actually a piece of the bigger picture called globe. So let the Idly go global...

For my global friends, Idli that I spell as 'Idly' is a salty pan cake, made of rice and black lentils, milled, fermented and steamed in a custom-made idly mold, served typically with sambar and coconut chutney.

 'Steaming is vital, but whats more critical is the water to steam up'


  1. I am becoming a fan of your writing.
    You know what, after reading your blog, I feel like Chetan Bhagat and you as Arundhuti Roy. :)

  2. Thanks Nilu....but Arundhuti omg!...thats way too high and far for me!!