Customer Service 2.

In my blog post yesterday on Topli Na Paneer, I had said that I will be reviewing the product and the customer service today. Here I go with both.

I was promised that the paneer will be delivered to me by around 8 AM this morning. Just before 8, I received a phone call from the vendor advising me that there will be a slight delay but, the delivery will take place soon. Since it was no big deal, I agreed to wait and the delivery was made by 9.15. The young lad in fact rang me up to seek directions to my place and was prompt thereafter in delivering the parcels.

Ranjan and I had these for lunch and enjoyed every bite of it. We intend ordering for it regularly henceforth.

Topli Na Paneer.

My son Ranjan is a foodie and when he goes shopping for one item he will end up buying half a dozen or more items on display in the shop. Last week he had done exactly that again and,  brought something that was in the fridge intriguing me as I normally would not try anything until I make sure that it is vegetarian. This is what he had brought.
I discovered later that it is Burrata Cheese and I quite enjoyed some.

This cheese however, reminded me of a Parsi speciality over here called Topli Na Paneer.

The last time that I had had this was some years ago when a young friend’s mother in law used to make them on order for collection from her home. I had to drive some twenty kilometres to and fro and that eventually killed my appetite for it.

Since I remembered those times when I had relished them, I tried to locate the lady again only to find that she had in the meanwhile gone off to meet her maker. I therefore contacted two Parsi friends in Pune to seek their advice on how to go about procuring it and was sent this flier by one of them.
I called the number and was treated to a highly satisfying response from the responder and I have placed an order for delivery tomorrow morning.

I shall post again after I receive the paneer with my experience of the customer service as well as a review of the product itself.

Food 1 – Handvo.

One of the cherished memories that I have of Ahmedabad where I went to Business School in the mid sixties of the last century is having a Gujarathi dish called Handvo. My readers may remember that I had written about having it last July.  I had it again for lunch today and the image above is of it before I dug into it.

With little to occupy my attention nowadays and being unable to stand for long and cook, I have taken to ordering some dishes that I am not confident of getting made by our help.  I prefer to get them from restaurants offering take away services and also from home businesses that have now mushroomed with the advent of Covid. I was able to locate one such lady entrepreneur offering home made Handvo and duly placed an order on her for collection earlier today. Collection because she clearly indicated that she would not be able to make home deliveries.

My daughter in love duly went to collect the Handvo and the lady asked how we found out about her. There is another story behind that which too needs to be recognised.

With the onset of the pandemic and the lockdowns, one Lady Senior Citizen of our neighbourhood started a Senior Citizen WhatsApp group to offer a platform for seeking help, support and information for Seniors. This group is very active and has been a source of information for us for many things including food suppliers. My source for information on the Handvo supplier came from the lady Administrator of the group and I duly passed on that information to the former.

I have decided to start another series on food that I like and either make or order from outside to keep my readers informed about my progress as a foodie.

Are you, my reader, able to indulge in such way through home entrepreneurs?

Fun With Language 1.

This exchange in WhatsApp took place between my friend SD and me earlier today.

SD: This is a cake…Can anyone believe it!!!Great creativity…Paithani saree cake with Kolhapuri jewellery made by cake artist Tanvir Palishkar at J W Marriot Pune.Amazing talent,still can not believe this is a cake.🌹🌹🌹🌹👆👆👆👆

Me: Yes, it takes the cake!

For skeptics, here is a link to the Youtube clip showing the full range of saree cakes.

Poor Customer Service.

On Monday last, I received a message in my WhatsApp from a home based food entrepreneur offering to supply Churma Laddoo on Thursday. Thursday, ie today being the first day of our Navratri festival, I placed an order for half a kilogram of the laddoos for delivery this morning.

I waited till 12 noon before I rang the lady up and the call was not answered. At 1230 PM, she called me back to advice me change of plans and said that the laddoos will be delivered tomorrow morning. No apologies, no explanations, nothing. Since I had already paid for the laddoos, I had to lump the change and simply accepted the situation instead of prolonging the agony.

Having written about the Japanese Customer Service Omotenashi just this morning, I decided that I shall send her a link to my post after the laddoos are delivered. She had also offered to supply some other goodies on Sunday evening by a separate message and I have now decided that I shall not ever order anything again from her.

Am I being too rigid?

Crumpet Uppuma.

Uppuma is a very popular breakfast/snack food in many parts of India. The most common variety is made with semolina but other varieties with sago etc are also made.

A rather unusual but easy to make uppuma is Bread Uppuma with left over bread slices.

After reading my blog post Crumpets, my friend Raju who lives in the USA commented – “I have been eating Crumpets from 1970 when I first landed in Toronto. Crumpet was a standard available in all grocery stores. the attraction was it felt and to a large extend tasted like a thick “UTTAPPAM”. Though it was commonly eaten at tea time, as you know , we South Indian Aiyer folks always improvise, so the following were the tastiest outcomes!!!
1) Nicely toasted, buttered with lots of ” Thangam Vadu mango pickle Gravy” !!!!
2) Set of nicely toasted , buttered crumpets with Spicy Potato PODIMASS… best sandwich !!!
3) The ultimate crumpet dish is ” CRUMPET UPPUMMA”!!!!. This is the favorite dish with all my Canadian and American friends!!! They have given up eating crumpets with Jam and butter!!! it is simple to make crumpet uppumma… like the regular uppumma, sauté onions, green chilies, ginger and mustard seeds and instead of adding Cream of wheat, cut crumpets into 1 inch square pieces and mix them with the sauted onions and slowly cook them for 10 to 15 minutes in low flame to get some crisp . No water at all. You will go to heaven!!!
The British way back in 1656 in Chennai ate the Uttappam with “JAM & BUTTER” and now in 2021 the south indian Ayers in London eat Crumpets as crumpet Uppumma!!.

Its all Localization!!!”

Just goes to show how innovative people can be!  Raju who has never commented on my blog posts, was even inspired to when it came to one on a food item!

Having got into the spirit of things, Raju took the inspiration to another level. He got some crumpets
Seasoned some onion, green chillies, etc for the upma,
Diced the crumpets into manageable cubes,
Tossed the whole lot togther and ended up with Crumpet Upma.
He then sent the images and a write up about his creation via WhatsApp as the images could not be posted on the comments section of my blog.

When the mood takes me again, as I am sure that it will soon, I shall venture forth into getting some more crumpets and make some Crumpet Uppuma too.

Raju and I have been friends for over 55 years and went to Business School together. I have been very close to his family in India and his younger brother Suresh too is a homebaker having learnt the art during the lockdown here. He too has created the crumpet uppuma after having first learnt to bake crumpets at home.

The three of us have become cooks. What a waste of our education into fields far removed from this wonderful occupation!