Friday, July 08, 2011  Sha'aban 05, 1432 A.H    ISSN 1563-9479
 Group Chairman: Mir Javed RahmanFounded by: Mir Khalil-ur-RahmanEditor-in-Chief: Mir Shakil-ur-Rahman 

   

Nigella is adored by all and so is Jamie Oliver and who can escape the biting wit of Anthony Bourdain or the tongue of Gordon Ramsay; sharper than his knife, most would say. But can they cook Biryani or a Quorma with just the right amount of Kewra? Can they make a flaky Paratha as well as a flaky pie crust? Knowing one’s own food heritage and culture is the litmus test of any home cook.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise than that Pakistani celebrity chefs are all the rage with media networks bringing in food channels. Restaurant owners and aunties who had conducted classes from their home kitchens make up this new breed of celebrity in Pakistan. In the past one had to scour the newspaper for the latest home-based cooking classes now a bit of channel surfing will tell you how to woo at dinner parties and most importantly the in-laws, free of cost. The fan base for cooking shows has grown with viewers calling in and SMSing their questions and praise. No longer singularly a woman’s field of interest, men who share a passion for whipping up gastronomical delights are also indulging in the TV chef’s expertise.

To herald in this new era in cooking Azra Syed celebrated the publication of her first book, simply titled ‘Mrs. Azra Syed’s Pakistani Cooking’. The book is a massive collection of Azra Syed’s recipes from her expansive 35 year career teaching young women how to cook. The hard cover cookbook brings to the home cook an essential array of recipes with chapters that include Bread and Breakfast, Snacks, Desserts, Chutneys and Pickles. The only problem was the section titled Recipes which is a hundred pages long. Dividing the section into Meat, Poultry and Seafood would make finding recipes easier as well as an alphabetical index. Sifting through the pages to find a relevant recipe will be a hassle but can easily be corrected in the next edition. Additionally for the novice cook, ingredients are listed in English and Urdu so one may find exactly what they are looking for at home and abroad. Azra Syed’s book adds menu ideas to bring together a succinct combination of dishes for relaxed and festive occasions.

Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy, granddaughter of Azra Syed, gave a speech introducing the book with fond memories of being in her grandmother’s kitchen. She said, “The cooking classes were also like therapy sessions for the women there.” The women who had attended her classes have gone on to be prominent chefs including Naheed Ansari, Sarah Riaz and Shirin Anwar. Azra Syed, stated, “Women have taken my classes to prepare for married life and went on to live in various parts of the world.” Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy was the driving force who pushed her grandmother to compile the recipes in a book form “because they are so simple and the younger generation would benefit from it the most,” she went on to say. “I’ve taught girls who didn’t know coriander from mint,” Azra Syed quipped to the delight of the audience. She also said, “It’s a collaborative effort from women of all generations,” she mentioned Fareshteh Aslam who edited the cookbook, Tuba Arshad, the Creative Manager at Markings, and Kiran Aman who published the effort.

Visually the book captures the essence of Pakistani food with stunning photographs by Kohi Marri. Enlarged images from the book added a supporting element to the venue with the red of chilli peppers, the lavender of onions and the white of garlic. Kohi Marri commented on working with the team and as a food photographer for the first time, “We spent two weeks choosing the style of pictures and doing test shoots. We set up parameters defined by my recent technique and working with available light. I was allowed total freedom with the photography and established a good working relationship with Kiran and the designer Tuba. It didn’t feel like work at all! Now I believe I’m addicted to food photography and also still life.”

Published by Markings Publishing, this is the second book by the company which is run by Kiran Aman an entrepreneur who also has a jewelry boutique, Kiran Fine Jewelry. The book was purchased by many of the attendees who live the contemporary life but want to learn to simplify Pakistani cooking.



She was joined by fellow Harry Potter cast members as they bade farewell to the series before the final instalment of the film is released.

When asked about her character, the 21-year-old said: “What does she mean to me? What doesn’t she mean to me?”

“I think of her like a sister, she feels so real to me. When people ask what I will miss the most, of course I’ll miss the people but I will actually just miss being her.”

Cast and crew gathered at a press conference to mark the imminent release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, the eighth and final instalment in the wizarding saga.

Radcliffe could not attend the press conference because he is starring on Broadway.

But he recorded a video message in which he said: “The thing I will miss most is the crew and the cast. The crew are some of my best friends in the world.”

Radcliffe, who was just 11 when cast as Harry, said of his two co-stars: “We’ve spent 10 years of our lives together. I do think the bond between me and Rupert and Emma is pretty unbreakable. I will miss them both very, very much but hopefully we will find something to work together on.”

He described Deathly Hallows Part 2 as the best Potter adventure of them all. “I’m so thrilled with the film. I think of it as being light years ahead of any of the other films in the series. Part 1 was great but in terms of quality it’s the best film we’ve ever made.”

Grint, who plays Ron Weasley, said there had been a hole in his life since filming ended.

“I don’t think I really have come to term with it. I’ve felt a little bit lost without it really, I haven’t really known what to do with myself,” he said of the last few months.

“It’s been such a constant part of my life. To suddenly come down to this one film is quite sad.”

The film has its world premiere in Trafalgar Square today and fans have been gathering there all week.

Asked if he minded that the films had never won an Oscar, director David Yates replied; “If you go to Trafalgar Square right now you’ll see a mini-Glastonbury of people from all over the world who have been camping out in the rain for three nights. That’s more important than any trophy.”

 

 

Aamir Khan’s Disco Fighter avatar that you saw in the last few minutes of Delhi Belly in an item number during the end credit roll, is soon going to become a complete character in his next home production. And what’s more, Aamir will be the fourth hero of this venture.

The other three being Imran Khan, Vir Das and Kunaal Roy Kapoor. And in case, you haven’t guessed it yet, it will be the sequel to the much successful Delhi Belly which has already earned over Rs 30 crore within the first one week of its release.

This will also be the first film with mama-bhanja Aamir and Imran together on screen.

One source revealed, “The film will be titled Disco Fighter and Kiran Rao is currently writing it. When Delhi Belly was in the post-production phase, Aamir came up with the idea of making a sequel to the film. However, he was not sure of the box office response Delhi Belly would generate. After all, it was quite a different genre. Now that the film has released, the verdict is out. The youth have loved the film. And though certain people have not really taken it too well, no one has been able to ignore it altogether. In metros, the film has been a huge hit and the youth has given it a cult status.

Aamir was always of the opinion that if the film works well, a sequel should definitely be made. However, since he is busy with Dhoom 3 right now, he has asked Kiran Rao to take over the project. But the whole idea of how to take the film forward came from Aamir.”

Aamir had already revealed that Kiran Rao was developing a script for the next Aamir Khan Production venture, in an interview with Mumbai Mirror last month.

In fact, the actor had said, that if things went well, they would make the film that Kiran had been working on. The actor obviously was waiting for the response to Delhi Belly, before getting on with the project.

Like every other sequel, this film will also begin where Delhi Belly ends, the Disco Fighter song and dance. “The film will take off from Aamir entering the film as Disco Fighter and the three boys will have an encounter with him. The details of the script are being worked out still,” added the source.

 

Angelina Jolie and Sarah Jessica Parker top Forbes best-paid actress list

Which Hollywood woman is making the most bank? It’s a toss-up - between Angelina Jolie and Sarah Jessica Parker.

Forbes has unveiled its top earning women in Hollywood list with Jolie and SJP sitting at the top, having each taken in an estimated $30 million between May of 2010 and May of 2011. Forbes came up with their estimations by chatting up industry insiders, and the earnings reflect pretax gross income, and doesn’t account for any deductions for management, agent or attorney fees.

Jolie, 36, added Salt and The Tourist  to her resume in 2010, and while the latter may not have impressed many stateside it certainly did overseas. Thanks to international support, the movie, co-starring Johnny Depp, went on to make $280 million.

Parker, meanwhile, is still raking in Sex and the City dough. Since she wore both actor and production hats on the series, she’s getting a nice cut from the reruns. Sex and the City 2 also didn’t receive a lot of critical love, but the 2010 movie still went on to earn $290 million. Not to mention the fact that Parker also earned $18 million from her line of perfumes.

Coming in behind those two top earners are Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon, who earned $28 million a piece in that time frame. Julia Roberts, whose film Larry Crowne had a disappointing showing at the box office opening weekend, comes in fifth, having earned $20 million, the same as Twilight Saga star Kristen Stewart.

 

This Just In

Transformers 3 has had roaring success worldwide even surpassing that of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. Shia LaBeouf has stated that he feels he won’t be able to bring anything new to his character and has bowed out of the fourth installment. The latest flick has incorporated Rosie Huntington-Whiteley as the newest leading lady; after Megan Fox ran into trouble with the film’s director and producer. The makers of the franchise hope to take the movie into a newer, more sinister direction and are allegedly in talks with action star Jason Statham. The British actor has been known for his gritty roles in action film such as Crank and Transporter. The producers are also hoping to cash in on the real life couple of Statham, 43 and Huntington-Whiteley, 24.

 

Justin Timberlake has been out shaking his thang at the single world, and is now his thang is completely exhausted. JT has decided he no longer wants to be single and flinging with former child stars, or Olivia Munn (or was it Wilde?). Jessica Biel, in the meantime has been calling up JT at all hours and they have been “talking about giving it another shot,” and that’s how the story of JT’s overtly wild life ends, and slinks back to covert. “The single world is not what it’s cracked up to be,” Justin has discovered, according to a friend. So yeah. The upside is that the threat of JT making curly haired goth babies with Ashley Olsen has gone away, at least for a little while.

Following the acrimonious Oasis split in 2009, Noel Gallagher told his version of events on Wednesday as he announced his first debut album since the band broke up.

The 10-track LP, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, will be released on 17 October on his own label, Sour Mash Records. A second, more “out there” album will follow in 2012, Gallagher said.

During a funny and it times poignant press conference at the Electric Cinema in London’s Notting Hill, Gallagher talked about the dramatic bust up with his brother Liam, just before the band were due on stage in Paris for the Rock en Seine festival in August 2009.

Asked why he had had enough of Oasis, Gallagher answered. “I hadn’t had enough of Oasis, I had had enough of Liam.”

Asked about Liam’s comments that he was “better off” without his brother, Gallagher said. “I’m sure he is. Am I better off? I don’t know […] I never really saw myself as a frontman, I can see it being a major pain in the arse. He’s better off without me because he’s in charge now. Whether I am better off without him remains to be seen.”

 

 
 
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