Hints and Tips for Jewellery

Try to keep delicate jewellery away from perfume, soap, body lotion or hairspray. Clean jewellery with a soft toothbrush soaked in distilled water. Use a jewellers’ cloth if you have one. Sometimes delicate gold chains get entangled. It would be helpful to apply talcum powder or a drop of almond oil. Then gently ease out the knots with a pin.

Prawn Pilau – A family recipe from Northern India

This recipe was passed to me when I ran a dating agency in the 80’s and 90’s. One of my clients who lived in Singapore asked all her medical friends for their favourite curry recipes. So I thought I would share some with you. I have had the recipe for about 30 years but am ashamed to say that I haven’t made it yet, so there are no photos. I have put it at the top of my TO MAKE LIST. All I know about the lady who provided the recipe, is that she was a researcher at the Institute of molecular and cell biology at the National University of Singapore.

Ingredients for rice:-

2 cups of biryani rice

1/2 a teaspoon of yellow colouring mixed with a little water3 cinnamon sticks

5 cloves

3 cardamoms

1 large onion

3 tablespoons of ghee

salt to taste

sufficient water to cook the rice

2 sprigs of mint leaves

10 shallots sliced and fried

Ingredients for Prawn Pilau:-

1/2 a kilo of large prawns

2 sliced tomatoes

1 tablespoon of chilli powder (alternatives are fresh chillies or harissa paste or dried chillies)

1 teaspoon of turmeric

a small piece of ginger

3 cloves of garlic

5 shallots

10 blanched almonds

1 tablespoon of tomato puree

1 tablespoon of tomato ketchup

salt to taste

1 large onion, sliced finely

A little cooking oil of your choice

Method for cooking the rice:-

1. Wash and drain the rice.

2. Add salt and yoghurt to the rice.

3, Heat the ghee, fry the cloves, cinnamon, cardamoms and sliced large onion till fragrant.

4. Add rice, and fry for a while before adding water to cook the rice.

5. When the rice is cooked, add in the colouring, fry small onions and mint leaves. Stir well.

6. Serve hot rice with the prawns.

Method for cooking the Prawn Pilau:-

1. Clean the prawns (slit to divide).

2. Blend the ginger, garlic and small onions. Add this to the prawns and mix well.

3. Add chilli powder and turmeric.

4. Heat the oil and fry the large sliced onion.

5. Add prawns. Fry for 4 minutes, stirring continuously.

6. Add in the ground almonds, tomato puree, tomato ketchup and sliced tomato. Stir well and add in salt to taste. Cook till dry for about 10 minutes.

7. Scoop rice on to a plate. Fill the centre of the rice with prawn pilau.

8. Garnish with the mint leaves and crispy fried shallots.

Many of us wobble about making rice and I notice that this recipe doesn’t specify how much water to use. Personally, if I make a cup of rice, I would use a cup and a half of water and bring it to the boil, before simmering with a heat diffuser for 20 minutes with a tight fitting lid, and no peeping!!