Posts Tagged With: Jaipur

Jantar Mantar

A World Heritage Site, Jantar Mantar is unlike anything I have ever seen. Located in Jaipur, Rajasthan, Jantar Mantar is a collection of monumental sized astronomical observation instruments dating to the early 1700’s. They were created by the Mughal Sawai Jai Singh during the Raj of Emperor Mohammad Shah.

Appearing at first glance as a modern sculpture garden or perhaps minimalist architectural assortments, the instruments are for measuring and calculating various astronomical features. Varying from ascending triangular towers and staircases to submerged and inscribe hemispheres of white marble, Jantar Mantar is at once mesmerizing and sublime.

The Vrihat Samrat Yantra or “Supreme Instrument” which dominates the site, stands at 27 meters and is the largest sundial in the world. I stood and watched its shadow sweep across the graceful arc of white marble, hypnotized by the movement of the celestial body upon which we exist. The Supreme Instrument can track time with an accuracy of 2 seconds. Astounding!

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Categories: Travel, World Heritage Site | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Jaipur is One of my Favorite Cities

Jaipur is simply fantastic. Situated in Rajasthan, Jaipur is one of the three points in the golden triangle, along with Agra and Delhi. Jaipur has much to offer, from dizzying array of historic sites to cultural experiences. Also known as the Pink City, Jaipur is a city of many colors. Of the numerous highlights of our trip, Jaipur provided several, including some of the most spectacular scenery. More on Jaipur to come.

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Categories: Culture, Travel | Tags: , , , | 3 Comments

Jaipur Cooking Class

Being able to experience the culture of India during my Hilton Honors Teacher Trek (#HHTeacherTreks) has been amazing… And culture includes food! I love cooking and food, and love Indian cuisine, so taking Chef Lokesh Mathur’s Jaipur Cooking Classes was an exciting opportunity! I am so glad because it has been one of the big highlights of our trip!

Chef Lokesh has cooked for crown princes and emirs throughout the Mideast, he has worked in the hotel industry, and taught at colleges for years. He is an interesting and congenial person who is also a great conversationalist. Equally enjoyable was meeting his lovely wife and family, with whom we had dinner.

Our class was simply a fantastic experience, and we came to appreciate it as an excellent value as well. You can choose your style of menu from several regional variations, and you can choose from veg or non-veg options. Lokesh picked us up from our hotel, presented us with printed menus for the multiple dishes we were about to prepare while we got to know one another over cups of chai. We were then introduced to the numerous ingredients for the many wonderful dishes, including detailed discussion of Indian spices.

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Over the course of the next several hours, we prepared multiple and varied dishes, including desert, breads, chutneys, and the spicy meat dishes I requested. Techniques were covered in a very understandable and accessible manner. When we got too hot and needed break, we had more chai. 🙂

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The very full night resulted in several wonderful dishes, including the fantastically flavored meat dishes I requested. I loved making the very ubiquitous naan flatbread, and the chutney we made was the best I’ve tasted. My favorite dish, although hard to choose, was probably the Rajasthani Lamb, complete with the very flavorful garlic, peppers, and irresistible lamb stock.

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After about 5 house of great conversation, demonstration, preparation, and cooking, we sat down to eat the many wonderful dishes we prepared in the company of Lokesh’s charming wife and her visiting sister. It was simply wonderful, and at least as enjoyable as the cooking lessons. My one regret is that I didn’t get a photograph of the table with all the completed dishes. After about six fantastic hours, Lokesh boxed up the food we couldn’t finish, and he delivered us back to our hotel.

If you are the slightest bit interested, I really encourage you to check out Lokesh’s Jaipur Cooking Classes. I sincerely hope I will one day get the chance to visit Lokesh and his family again for another round of classes. Meanwhile, I am taking with me a small piece of Indian culture that I will forever relish — something better than any souvenir from a gift shop!

Categories: Food | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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