Kitchen Vastushastra Explained

The USHA Kitchen

The USHA Kitchen

Lately there has been a resurgence in ancient Indian philosophy from a very scientific point of view. Take for instance the myth of Dashaavatar where the 10 incarnations of Lord Vishnu can be viewed within an evolution perspective, as Homo Sapiens moved from Matsya (the fish), Kurma (the amphibious tortoise), through Narshima (half man-half beast),  Rama (the ideal Man) and finally to Kalki (the destroyer of beings – resembling Darwin’s struggle for ‘survival of the fittest’). Similarly Vastushastra or the ancient Hindu doctrine of temple architecture is today being used more and more to plan out living spaces. A huge treatise in itself, of which we will only discuss the kitchen in this post. However, even as we take our first baby steps into the world of Kitchen Vastushastra let me warn you that things have changed – people live differently today. And with new lifestyles old ways innovate with style. So switch on to a New Life With USHA. 

USHA COOKTOPS: Vastu dictates the cooking stove to be at South-East

USHA COOKTOPS: Vastu dictates the cooking stove to be at South-East

Let’s begin with the most basic kitchen appliance, the Cooking Stove / Cooktop. Vastu dictates that it should be at the South-East and shouldn’t be too close to the wall. The former is simple space logic, having a stove at the South-East allows people to store both kitchen utensils and grocery/ingredients along the South and West for easy access. As the ancient laws also dictate that storage units for essential commodities like grains, pulses spices and other non-perishable commodities should be stocked along the South or the West direction. Regions where sunlight wasn’t really necessary – as most ancient kitchens windows were in the East, giving the previous farming communities early access to sunlight.

USHA HOODS, enable you to place your cooktop at any distance from the walls

USHA HOODS, enable you to place your cooktop at any distance from the walls

As for the latter reason of avoiding stoves too close to the walls was because during those days most homes were built with combustible materials; and people were just being cautious.However, today with the emergence of Hoods and new building materials this rule has almost become redundant in most urban homes.

USHA WATER DISPENSER: Store water towards the North East

USHA WATER DISPENSER: Store water towards the North East

The ancient Treatise also instructed people to build their kitchen sinks and store their Drinking water towards the North-East of the Kitchen, this was to ensure that the early morning rays killed the germs thereby keeping the water purified. Similarly fruits and other perishable materials were stored by the water for the very same reasons, which today could be replaced as a place for our Juicers.

USHA JUICERS: Keeping fruits by the window if not inside a Fridge makes sense

USHA JUICERS: Keeping fruits by the window if not inside a Fridge makes sense

Other Cooking Utensils were to be stored next to or near the cooking stove for convenience, in ancient times it could have meant pots and pans, as they were frequently used. For us it would mean our Ovens and Fryers, which would help us to keep a lookout on things – if we happen to be cooking more than a single dish at a time using various different appliances.

USHA FRYER: Appliances located close will help you watch-over your dishes

USHA FRYER: Appliances located close will help you watch-over your dishes

That’s some science titbits behind the glorious art of Vastu, but as we had mentioned earlier, times have changed and with our modern USHA appliances you can place anything, anywhere as you like; as long as you add logic and a little style to it.

USHA HALOGEN OVEN: Happy Cooking!

USHA HALOGEN OVEN: Happy Cooking!

Thinking of rearranging your kitchen? Go ahead and Play with USHA kitchen appliances – Jaw-dropping both in style and the delicious recipes they can cook up.

To Explore More Appliances Click Here

Garlic Bread For All Seasons

The beauty of Garlic Bread is that it can be eaten with just about anything. It can be a part of a very outlandish gourmet four course meal, munched simply with a Coke and pizza or just on its own. Originating in the South of France it has not only invaded our meals and Dates but also our vocabulary – the British Comedian Peter Kay’s line, “Garlic Bread, it’s the future, I’ve tasted it” was voted the greatest one-liner in TV comedy history in 2007.

The great thing about Garlic Bread is that everybody loves it from kids and adults to bums and gourmet connoisseurs. Better still you can serve it anytime, anywhere – after-school meal for kids, Evening Snacks, Supper, High Tea, Picnic and so on and so forth. Here is a simple way to make them using the Usha Halogen Oven.

Ingredients Garlic bread Halogen oven usha

  1. 1 garlic bread loaf
  2. 50 gm butter
  3. 100 gm mozzarella cheese – grated
  4. 50 gm cheddar cheese – grated
  5. 2 tbsp olive oil
  6. 1 tbsp garlic paste
  7. 1 tsp red chilli flakes
  8. ½ tsp oregano
  9. ½ tsp black pepper
  10. 2 pinches of salt

Method:

  • Cut loaf into ½’ thick slices.
  • Put butter and all other ingredients in a bowl. Beat with an electric mixer till smooth.
  • Place bread slices on the high rack in the oven. Press the pizza button and set time to 3 minutes. Let temp be 210°C.
  • Press start and bake for 3 minutes.
  • Take out the baked bread from the oven and spread cheese mixture on the untoasted side of the bread.
  • Put bread back in the oven and again bake on pizza mode (210°C) for 3 minutes or till golden.

A quick snack or a Gourmet side dish, the choice is yours.

The Amazing Chocolate Cake

Why Amazing? Because we will be attempting something, which others have never thought about!

Most people find the Rice Cooker a boring old device, using it simply to cook its namesake dish -Rice. However, you will be surprised what the Rice Cooker can do if you get a little creative. Beginning from Chocolate Cakes and Banana Bread to exotic dishes like Cheesy Jalapeno Bread and Black Bean Chilly, your Rice Cooker can make all these and more.

Feeling Adventurous? Good, let’s try our hand at the Chocolate Cake. The only difference between baking a Chocolate Cake in a Rice Cooker as against an Oven is the time required: The Rice Cooker takes way more time, but that is compensated by the original taste of the freshly baked ingredients. Call it a type of Slow Organic Cooking if you like, which is as healthy, as it is tasty. To borrow Carlo Petrini’s words ( founder of the International Slow Food Movement)  “The quest for slowness, which begins as a simple rebellion against the impoverishment of taste in our lives, makes it possible to rediscover taste.”

IngredientsRice Cooker

  1. 135 gm dark chocolate
  2. 95 gm butter
  3. Butter for Coating
  4. 100 gm icing sugar
  5. 2 egg yolks + 2 whole eggs
  6. 35 gm flour

Method

  1. Begin by coating the rice cooker bowl with a layer of butter.
  2. Mix the ingredients properly till they begin to fan
  3. Place the mix in the rice cooker bowl.
  4. Place the bowl in the rice cooker and push the cook button.
  5. Now wait, it could take anything between an hour to two, depending on your Cooker settings.
  6. Insert a toothpick into the cake to check if it is ready. If the toothpick comes out clean and dry, your cake is done
  7. Once cooked flip the bowl upside down onto a flat plate and serve

Now, wasn’t that easy? It took a little longer than the usual Over baked cakes but nonetheless here you are surrounded by the freshly baked aroma of a lovely cake. Take a bite to savor the flavors, and you realize the wait was completely worth it!  Next  we will teach you to cook something yet more exotic with your Rice-Cooker.

Fudge Brownies: Kids & Adult’s Delight

Like you, we too get dumbfounded by the price of Brownies at the chic coffee outlets. The outlets, we must admit are nice and decent, but still that doesn’t give them an excuse to charge astronomical sums for a single brownie. It is just not fair, especially if you have kids who are madly and deeply in love with Fudge Brownies. And who knows how healthy these ‘brownies for sale’ are. Besides being healthy the warm smell of fresh home baked Brownies is a delight in itself. It’s time to wow your kids and friends with your Fudge Brownies over a cup of coffee or a glass of milk.

Ingredients: Untitled-1 copyMakes 10

  1. 100 gm butter, 1½ cups brown sugar
  2. 2 eggs, 1 tsp vanilla essence
  3. ½ cup maida (flour), ¼ tsp baking powder,
  4. ½ cup cocoa
  5. ¾ cup walnuts – cut into small pieces or crushed roughly with a rolling pin
  6. A square tin (7”X 7”)

Method:

  1. Melt butter in a deep pan on low heat. Add brown sugar. Mix well with a wooden spoon on very low heat for about 5 minutes till well blended. Remove from fire and cool completely.
  2. Add one egg. Mix well with a wooden spoon. Add the second egg and mix again. Add essence.
  3. Picture1Sift flour, baking powder and cocoa together.
  4. Keeping aside ¼ cup walnuts, add the rest of the walnuts to the maida and mix well with the hands.
  5. Mix the flour mixture in the butter-egg mixture very gently with a spoon.
  6. Line and grease a loaf tin. Transfer the cake mixture in it to get 1″ thick layer of the mixture. Sprinkle the remaining walnuts.
  7. Place on the low rack in the Halogen oven. Press speed up mode and set for 40 minutes at 140°C. Press start to bake.
  8. When the beep comes remove from oven. Check with a tooth pick. Leave to cool for 5-10 minutes in the tin.
  9. Remove from tin. Cut into squares to serve.

Baking them in the Usha Halogen Oven makes the whole process real easy. Besides unlike your normal oven it can be used for various other purposes to cook up recipes ranging from regional dishes to global favorites.

Summer Delight for Kids: Yummy Vanilla Cherry Cake

Untitled-1 copySchool’s out for summer and your kids are home running around helter-skelter doing what these agents of chaos do best. The only respite you have is when they finally settle down in front of the Television to catch a glimpse of their favorite toon or action hero. Only to be tricked by those clever commercials featuring treasures of sweets and then they are at it again, now demanding that they be taken out for a treat. It is 40 C outside and there is no way in hell you are ready to step out, let alone take a 10 mile ride to the nearest Baskin Robbins or Mc Donald’s. Life is hard! But help is at hand: this delicious Vanilla Cherry Cake recipe is meant for times like these, easy to make and awesome to taste, it is going to be your savior this summer.Picture1

For those using the Usha Halogen Oven life gets even simpler, all you need to do is press Cake Mode, stand back and relax, to return 40 mins later to a beautiful Vanilla Cherry Cake. And it is not just Cakes you can make with this Kitchen Appliance there is a lot you can cook from Pizzas and French Fries to Pies and Pasta – in fact everything that your kid will ever demand this summer. In all earnest the Halogen Oven can be aptly re-named as the Kid’s Food Factory!

Ingredients

  1. ½ tin condensed milk (milk-maid), ½ cup milk, approx.
  2. ½ cup (75 gm) white butter, 3 tbsp powdered sugar
  3. 100 gms (1 cup) maida , ¼ cup cornflour
  4. ½ tsp level soda-bicarb, 1 tsp level baking powder
  5. 1 tsp vanilla essence, 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  6. A big baking tin of 7-8” diameter
  7. 10-12 glace cherries – cut into thin round slices, 1 tsp maida

Process 

  • Grease and dust a round cake tin of 8” diameter.
  • Sift maida with cornflour, soda-bicarb and baking powder. Keep aside.
  • Mix sugar and butter. Beat till very fluffy. Add milk-maid. Beat well.
  • Add 3-4 tbsp maida and mix. Add half the milk. Beat well. Add essence.
  • Add the remaining maida and the milk beating well after the addition.
  • Beat well for 3-4 minutes till the mixture is smooth and light.
  • Mix cherries with 1 tsp maida to coat dry fruits.
  • Add half of the cherries to the batter and mix well.
  • Pour the batter in a greased and lined tin.
  • Sprinkle the left over cherries on the cake to cover it well. Put the cake tin on the low rack in the oven. Press cake mode. Set the temperature to 150°C and time to 40 minutes and press start to bake. When the beep comes, check with a tooth pick.
  • Leave to cool for 5-10 minutes in the tin. Remove from tin on to a wire rack

It is ready to be served to bring down the temperature a lot of notches lower, in more than one sense.