THE HAIRY BIKERS ON SKIRTING THE SYRIAN BORDER, ARGENTINIAN PENGUINS, AND MAKING SPONTANEOUS TV

THE HAIRY BIKERS ON SKIRTING THE SYRIAN BORDER, ARGENTINIAN PENGUINS, AND MAKING SPONTANEOUS TV

Indian bed bugs and biking up Mount Ararat – Si King and Dave Myers share some classic travellers’ yarns.
It is comforting to know that, whatever far-flung location they’re broadcasting from, you can always rely on the Hairy Bikers to be themselves.
For years, viewers have watched these bearded besties sizzle, simmer and stew their way around the world’s kitchens, with plenty of their trademark banter along the way.
They’re in the middle of their UK tour – An Evening With The Hairy Bikers – but the pair have spent their TV careers travelling all over the world. We caught up with them during a rare pitstop to chat about what it’s like to live life on the road.
So, you’re sitting down to plan your next road trip – where do you start?
SK: It’s quite an organic process and it’s always collaborative. We tend to work with the same directors and producers that suit our style, and they have a difficult job. For each series they’ve got to shoot fantastic landscapes, make intimate documentary, do a bit of social anthropology and understand comedic timing. The show is defined by its environments – think of the journey as a washing line, and all the pieces of washing are points of interest.
The shows are clearly quite spur of the moment – can that be difficult with a whole production crew in tow?
DM: By now the people we work with in the production crews go back together maybe ten years. We’ll probably only take one car and one van so there’s only about ten people on the road plus us.
SK: It’s very important to keep our footprint as small as possible. We love dealing with normal people and that’s difficult if you turn up and go, ‘Ta-dah it’s a film crew!’ It’s easier in America as their culture is more media-savvy, but if you’re somewhere like Morocco or India you need to be gentle. We’re there to facilitate their story, so we don’t want to intimidate with cameras and lights.
DM: Basically, it’s not difficult – it’s like going away with your mates!
What’s the one thing you cannot travel without?
SK: I’ll always pack my Bose speaker – I can’t live without music.
DM: For me it’s my iPad, because I love my books. It allows me to carry a little library, and before we leave I can download all the books I’ve been meaning to read.
What are your travelling highlights?
DM: Argentina for me, which is going back a while now. We started in Buenos Aires – amazing beef, stunning seafood, and wonderful culture – and then rode down to Patagonia. We had two days on our own, just me and Si on the bikes, with cans of petrol in the top box and a clean set of clothes.
We met the crew in a nature reserve roughly the size of Wales. In one working day we filmed on a boat and saw 200 Southern right whales and calves in the bay, and then a beach full of elephant seals about 30-feet long. We ended up sitting on the beach surrounded by half a million penguins. That was a day to remember.
SK: I loved Namibia – seeing giraffes and kudu and springbok and zebra… It was just remarkable, we were so lucky with those two destinations.
And how about the people? Which cultures have most enjoyed interacting with?
SK: They all have different characters and personalities, but we’ve been around the world four times now and the vast majority of people have been just wonderful.
DM: There’s only 2% of the world that’s barmy and nasty, everyone else is really approachable – and that transcends race, religion and politics. Whether it’s the best pies or the best sausages they’ve all got something, and in one form or other you get talking. I think Thailand sticks out. The people are astonishingly friendly – they never let you down, and the food doesn’t either.
SK: India as well – they’re just beautiful, lovely people.
How much has all this foreign cuisine influenced your own cooking?
SK: You’d have to be dead not to be influenced by it! When we went home, the family would get to know foreign cuisine based on where we’d been. There was one day that my children walked in and went, ‘Dad, can we not just have a pie?’ I replied: ‘Don’t be ridiculous, your father’s just been to bloody India!’
DM: Yeah that happened to me with the Mediterranean. My cooking became heavily Italian and it still is – I haven’t got rid of that yet!
Where’s the toughest place you’ve shot?
DM: Turkey probably. I loved the place we went to, but I think it’s mostly closed off now. We rode there along the Syrian border and up Mount Ararat and it was tough on the roads. There were fuel trucks taking fuel continuously from Iraq and some of their driving was a bit chaotic to say the least. We learned how to make a donor kebab, which was amazing. But there was a military presence there as well – a lot of conscripts.
SK: Bored conscripts. It was a bit heavy.
DM: Vietnam was hard too, because Si broke his leg half way through the shoot. We continued up to China but the motorbikes were out of the question. It was quite funny for me. It wasn’t too funny for Si.
You’ve now teamed up with Booking.com, but we bet you’ve had some bad accommodation experiences over the years…
SK: There was one night early in our careers when we checked into a hotel in India which was filled with bed bugs. I pulled back the cover and the sheets were spotted with blood! I was exhausted so I just thought: ‘Right, I’m going to have to get in this.’
DM: You were eaten alive! There was another occasion – we were on our very first recce – and we’d booked into a hotel in Portugal. It took us about an hour to find and it was one o’clock in the morning so there was nowhere else to go. We’d booked into a shared room, and there was only a double bed!
You’re so often referred to as national treasures, what was you’re ‘we’ve made it’ moment?
DM: Stop there, you’re making us feel like the Queen Mother!
SK: I don’t think we realise we’re national treasures – we’re certainly not rich enough for it!
DM: I think one of the defining moments of my career – an ‘I’ve made it’ moment – might be our next tour when we walk out on stage at the London Palladium. That’s cool.
SK: We’ll be s***ing our pants, but it will be cool!
Could there ever be a singular Hairy Biker?
DM: We’ve done stuff separately – Si’s done a lot with The One Show and I’ve done Strictly – but with food we just come back. It’s so easy for us when we work together. I don’t think we could do the Bikers on our own, we’d just think: ‘What’s the point?’
List your property on Booking.com to win a private cooking class with the Hairy Bikers for you and your five friends – join.booking.com/hairybikers has more details.

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My rendezvous with God’s angels – Diya Sarkar

It was just another boring Monday after an exciting weekend. My husband was at the office and my children at their respective hostels. I had nothing constructive to do as usual, except for supervising the daily household chores being done by my maid, when suddenly I came across ‘Teach For Change’ on Facebook, an NGO engaged in teaching underprivileged children. I had plenty of spare time and so I thought of killing some.
I was super excited to get out of the house for a couple hours regularly on a weekday, for a change. But nothing seemed to work in my favour. I complained about the weather, about the traditional dress which I chose to wear and yes, waking up early was not my cup of tea. Well, my list of my grudges never saw a full stop.
As my car approached the gates of the government school, I saw from the tinted glasses, tiny feet walking in a line on a not so smooth road; crossing crowded streets, holding hands, each one taking care of his or her partner.
Most of them, unlike our children, could not afford to hire a cab or for that matter, a bus. Most of their parents did not own vehicles. So, they needed to walk miles before they reached their school whether it was sunny, rainy, cloudy or otherwise. But they did not complain.
School shoes were an item of luxury for the majority. They came to school wearing slippers. Perhaps that was their only footwear for walking, running and playing. But they did not complain.
I reached their classroom and there wasn’t a single fan. It was a hot summer afternoon. They were sweating, yet they wore a beautiful smile. They were still not complaining.
They were thirsty and their bottles were empty. Water was rare and precious for them. They had days and specific timings when the water supply came through the taps at their homes. So, after taking my permission, they went, one at a time, to the water cooler at the school, to fill up their bottles. They seemed happy and they weren’t complaining.
I can never forget the first time I stepped into their classroom. They were holding my hands and hugging me. They wanted a secure future, a smooth life, water running through their taps, a good pair of shoes, nutritious food and somehow, they found hope in me. Their eyes were twinkling with curiosity. There was an urge to learn something new, something that would iron out those wrinkles from their road to success. At such a tender age, they had already seen enough … poverty, malnourishment, domestic abuse, parents separated, being orphaned, beatings on a regular basis, child labour… you name it and they had experienced it.
The bell rang and my class was over. It was their lunchtime. In fact, they came to school for that midday meal. Many of them were hungry since the morning. Still, no complaints. Instead, to my surprise, there were so eager to help me to arrange my things, carry my bag, open the door for me and so on. They were all excited to know more about me and my next visit to their school. As I climbed down the stairs, they joined me. They were waving at me when I walked out of the school gate. “Bye Didi (that is how we refer to an elder sister in India) are you coming tomorrow?” was still ringing in my ears.
No amount of shopping, fine dining, catching up with friends or even holidaying had ever given me the pure joy and happiness that was offered by these God’s Angels.
The bitter experiences, harshness, difficulties, insecurities which life had in store for them had failed to erase the twinkle from their eyes, the smile from their lips or the love from their hearts. Not even their hungry stomachs or the uneven ground on which they were standing upon, could stop them from waving and smiling at me.
Days have turned into months and I am, once again, getting ready to go to school. I’m all excited to teach my students so that I can empower them with education, so that they are not at the mercy of someone, so that they don’t have to use secondhand stuff given to their elders by households like yours and mine. And yes, the weather or that traditional dress don’t bother me anymore. My list of grudges have also reduced considerably. There is something bigger than these irrelevant complaints of mine. The trust which they have invested in me, without an iota of doubt, which, in turn, has brought about the most precious bonding with these little souls. Alongside I have also learnt some valuable lessons for life – to remain humble and evolving.
God bless them, God’s Angels in disguise.
Hello, this is Diya Sarkar from Delhi, India. I presently reside in Hyderabad, city of pearls, Nizams and biryanis.
After completing my Masters in Journalism and Communication, I worked as a freelancer at ‘The Indian Express’, an Indian news media publishing company.
I am married with twins, a son and a daughter, who share their birthday with their father, who is also a twin. I have been a part time teacher in a couple of schools… in fact, a teacher to my children, both at school and at home. Now, I love teaching underprivileged children at a Government school. There is so much to learn from each one of them.
I am an avid traveller and have been on the move since my childhood, exploring different parts of the country, the cuisine, culture, landscape etc. In fact, unity in diversity is what defines India in one line.
I like reading, writing, cooking, shopping for traditional items or garments, and also have an interest in interior decoration and flower arrangement. I am planning to blog in the near future too. Thank you.

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Juanita’s Comida Mexicana – Albuquerque, New Mexico

– 2 Comments. Juanita’s Comida Mexicana on 4th Street
When writer Jeffrey Steingarten was named food critic for Vogue in 1998, he made it his quest to overcome any distaste he may have had for certain foods. Chief among the foods he disliked were kimchi, lard, Greek cuisine, and blue food. Over time, he overcame his aversion toward all those foods, save for those with a bluish hue. His reasoning, “I ‘m fairly sure that God meant the color blue mainly for food that has gone bad .” It could then be argued that his best-selling tome The Man Who Ate Everything is somewhat of a misnomer. Steingarten, whom you might recognize as a frequent judge on the Food Network’s Iron Chef America competition, is a very discriminating diner, but by strict definition not an omnivore (given that the term is defined as “an animal or person who eats everything”).
Because Gil’s Thrilling… contains reviews for an impressive number of the Duke City’s restaurants, my friend Carlos calls me “ The Man Who Has Eaten Everywhere ” (save, of course, for chain restaurants I avoid like the dreaded “reply all” email option). In truth, there are dozens, if not hundreds, of restaurants in the metropolitan area heretofore not darkened by my shadow. Consider the maddening pace at which new restaurants open almost every week. Then there are holes-in-the-wall where you might think no one has boldly gone before (not even intrepid Yelpers) considering how little is known about them. There are also well-known gems which, for whatever reason, have not been on my radar. Among the latter is Juanita’s Comida Mexicana. Peeling Green Chile
Serving Duke City diners since Y2K, Juanita’s might be considered both a hole-in-the-wall and a well-known gem. Sure it’s ensconced on heavily trafficked 4th Street, but it’s easy to miss. Unlike the Red Ball Café and the Barelas Coffee House , its neighbors in the Barelas neighborhood, Juanita’s has a fairly small storefront and its signage is rather weatherworn and faded. A small, homey storefront is befitting the Lilliputian size of this cafe. There are perhaps twelve tables in relatively close proximity to each other. From the vantage point I had during my inaugural visit, I was able to watch two workers peeling green chile for the day. Mind you, this was in November, more than a month removed from peak chile roasting season. Most of us have peeled, bagged and frozen our green chile by now. The fact that the inimitable aroma of fresh chile reached and appeased my nostrils bespoke of its freshness.
Juanita’s is named for Juanita Muñoz who is originally from Namiquipa, Chihuahua, Mexico, almost directly south of New Mexico’s boot heel. Her comida Mexicana is inspired by the ranches around her hometown though many New Mexicans will be reminded of the foods lovingly prepared by their own abuelitas. More than most Mexican restaurants in the Duke City, Juanita’s exemplifies the similarities between Mexican and New Mexican cuisine. Juanita is a peripatetic presence at the restaurant, taking orders, minding the register, refilling beverages and greeting her customers. She is a whirling dervish, an indefatigable bundle of energy who seems to love what she does. Chips and Salsa
The specialty of the house is carnitas which are served with guacamole, pico de gallo, beans and a tortilla. Tortas (carnitas, chicken, ham and carne asada) have their own section on the menu. So do breakfast, breakfast burritos, lunch plates, burrito plates and a surprising number of burger choices. There’s a daily special for every day of the week. It’s a very inviting menu even if chile is misspelled (“chili”) throughout. Aguas Frescas, Jarritos soft drinks and other beverages are available to wash down your meal as is a good cup of coffee which will go very well with your meal.
14 December 2018 : A complimentary plastic molcajete of salsa and basket of chips is ferried to your table shortly after you’ve taken your seat. As at so many Mexican and New Mexican restaurants, the salsa is probably the most piquant item on the menu. It’s a jalapeño-based salsa whose heat is intensified by coffee. The chips are thick, crisp and low in salt, perfect for scooping though that’s advisable only if you believe pain is a flavor and you like pain. Navajo Taco
14 December 2018 : Wednesday’s special on the day of my inaugural visit surprised me so much I just had to order it. How often, after all, do you see a Navajo taco on any menu? It’s constructed much in the same manner as other so-called “Indian tacos”–a large, flat sopaipilla fashioned into a bowl stuffed with whole pinto beans, shredded queso chopped tomatoes, green chile and lots of shredded lettuce topped by a dollop of sour cream. The pinto beans are special, perhaps the equal of the “best in Burque” beans at Papa Nacho’s . Though they’re vegetarian, they magically manage to have an almost “made with lard” flavor so comforting for those of us who grew up with mothers who prepared beans that way. If only the green chile had more than mild (on any scale) piquancy, the Navajo taco would have been a tremendous dish.
14 March 2019 : Comedian Felipe Esparza joked “ My mom cooked the same food every day – tortillas, beans and meat. If it was enchiladas, it was – tortillas, beans and meat. If it was burritos, it was still – tortillas, beans and meat .” While some may find that amusing, many of us who grew up in Northern New Mexico, particularly those of my generation, can relate to Esparza’s tongue-in-cheek remark. Despite the frequency at which we enjoyed enchiladas, I’ve never tired of them, especially when they’re made well. At Juanita’s, the enchiladas are made very well. They’re available with your choice of ground beef, shredded beef, chicken or cheese. The shredded beef enchiladas with a fried egg (over easy) is terrific even though neither the red or green chile has much bite. The accompanying Spanish rice and beans are excellent, too. Shredded Beef Enchiladas
Juanita’s Comida Mexicana is a find. My only regret is that I didn’t find it sooner in my quest to be “the man who ate everywhere” in the Duke City.
Juanita’s Comida Mexicana

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Exclusive: Indian antitrust watchdog raids Glencore business, others over pulse prices – sources | News | 1450 99.7 WHTC

Exclusive: Indian antitrust watchdog raids Glencore business, others over pulse prices – sources Saturday, March 16, 2019 12:28 p.m. EDT FILE PHOTO: The logo of commodities trader Glencore is pictured in front of the company’s headquarters in Baar, Switzerland, July 18, 2017.
By Aditya Kalra and Mayank Bhardwaj
NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India’s antitrust watchdog raided units of global commodities trader Glencore and two other firms in Mumbai on Saturday in an inquiry into alleged collusion on the price of pulses, four sources with knowledge of the raids told Reuters.
More than 25 antitrust officials carried out the raids at the offices of local units of Glencore and Africa’s Export Trading Group, and India’s Edelweiss group which previously had a commodities business, two government sources told Reuters.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has been investigating allegations that the companies formed a cartel to discuss the pricing of pulses while importing and selling them in the Indian market at higher prices in 2015 and 2016, when India faced an acute shortage, the sources said.
A spokesman for Switzerland-based Glencore, Charles Watenphul, declined to comment, while India’s Edelweiss, which sold its commodities trading business in November 2016, and the Export Trading Group did not respond to requests for comment.
Two years of drought pushed up prices of pulses such as chickpeas and black grams, which are a staple of Indian cuisine, in 2015 and forced New Delhi to offer duty-free imports, encouraging foreign and Indian traders who imported pulses to sell locally.
“The collusion by these companies led to higher prices of pulses,” one of the government sources said, adding that the CCI’s inquiry started three months ago.
The investigation will also assess whether the companies have continued their alleged collusion even after the prices of pulses stabilized in recent years, the source said.
IMPORT PRICES
The raids on five company offices in India’s financial capital began on Friday and were concluded on Saturday.
Antitrust officials collected evidence, including documents and e-mails, and questioned company officials during the raids, a second government source said.
Another source, an industry executive, told Reuters that CCI’s search involved going through company records at Glencore’s office in Mumbai, confirming it was part of the watchdog’s probe into accusations of fixing import prices.
The drought during 2015 wilted crops and exacerbated shortages of food such as protein-rich pulses and India, which consumes about 22 million tonnes of pulses annually, faced a shortfall of 7-8 million tonnes in 2015-16.
The CCI’s raids on commodities traders mark only its fourth such search operation in its near 10-year history. They can only be conducted with approval from a judge.
In October, the CCI raided the offices of global brewers such as Carlsberg and Anheuser Busch InBev and found e-mails which allegedly showed violations of Indian anti-trust laws. ( https://reut.rs/2JeQKEs )
The brewing companies have pleaded leniency under a CCI program, Reuters has reported.
(Reporting by Aditya Kalra and Mayank Bhardwaj; Additional reporting by Rajendra Jadhav and Aditi Shah; Editing by Alexander Smith) More From World

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Exclusive: Indian antitrust watchdog raids Glencore business, others over pulse prices – sources | News | WTAQ

Exclusive: Indian antitrust watchdog raids Glencore business, others over pulse prices – sources Saturday, March 16, 2019 11:28 a.m. CDT FILE PHOTO: The logo of commodities trader Glencore is pictured in front of the company’s headquarters in Baar, Switzerland, July 18, 2017.
By Aditya Kalra and Mayank Bhardwaj
NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India’s antitrust watchdog raided units of global commodities trader Glencore and two other firms in Mumbai on Saturday in an inquiry into alleged collusion on the price of pulses, four sources with knowledge of the raids told Reuters.
More than 25 antitrust officials carried out the raids at the offices of local units of Glencore and Africa’s Export Trading Group, and India’s Edelweiss group which previously had a commodities business, two government sources told Reuters.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has been investigating allegations that the companies formed a cartel to discuss the pricing of pulses while importing and selling them in the Indian market at higher prices in 2015 and 2016, when India faced an acute shortage, the sources said.
A spokesman for Switzerland-based Glencore, Charles Watenphul, declined to comment, while India’s Edelweiss, which sold its commodities trading business in November 2016, and the Export Trading Group did not respond to requests for comment.
Two years of drought pushed up prices of pulses such as chickpeas and black grams, which are a staple of Indian cuisine, in 2015 and forced New Delhi to offer duty-free imports, encouraging foreign and Indian traders who imported pulses to sell locally.
“The collusion by these companies led to higher prices of pulses,” one of the government sources said, adding that the CCI’s inquiry started three months ago.
The investigation will also assess whether the companies have continued their alleged collusion even after the prices of pulses stabilized in recent years, the source said.
IMPORT PRICES
The raids on five company offices in India’s financial capital began on Friday and were concluded on Saturday.
Antitrust officials collected evidence, including documents and e-mails, and questioned company officials during the raids, a second government source said.
Another source, an industry executive, told Reuters that CCI’s search involved going through company records at Glencore’s office in Mumbai, confirming it was part of the watchdog’s probe into accusations of fixing import prices.
The drought during 2015 wilted crops and exacerbated shortages of food such as protein-rich pulses and India, which consumes about 22 million tonnes of pulses annually, faced a shortfall of 7-8 million tonnes in 2015-16.
The CCI’s raids on commodities traders mark only its fourth such search operation in its near 10-year history. They can only be conducted with approval from a judge.
In October, the CCI raided the offices of global brewers such as Carlsberg and Anheuser Busch InBev and found e-mails which allegedly showed violations of Indian anti-trust laws. ( https://reut.rs/2JeQKEs )
The brewing companies have pleaded leniency under a CCI program, Reuters has reported.
(Reporting by Aditya Kalra and Mayank Bhardwaj; Additional reporting by Rajendra Jadhav and Aditi Shah; Editing by Alexander Smith) More From World

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Exclusive: Indian Antitrust Watchdog Raids Glencore Business, Others Over Pulse Prices – Sources

FILE PHOTO: The logo of commodities trader Glencore is pictured in front of the company’s headquarters in Baar, Switzerland, July 18, 2017. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo Reuters
By Aditya Kalra and Mayank Bhardwaj
NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India’s antitrust watchdog raided units of global commodities trader Glencore and two other firms in Mumbai on Saturday in an inquiry into alleged collusion on the price of pulses, four sources with knowledge of the raids told Reuters.
More than 25 antitrust officials carried out the raids at the offices of local units of Glencore and Africa’s Export Trading Group, and India’s Edelweiss group which previously had a commodities business, two government sources told Reuters.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has been investigating allegations that the companies formed a cartel to discuss the pricing of pulses while importing and selling them in the Indian market at higher prices in 2015 and 2016, when India faced an acute shortage, the sources said.
A spokesman for Switzerland-based Glencore, Charles Watenphul, declined to comment, while India’s Edelweiss, which sold its commodities trading business in November 2016, and the Export Trading Group did not respond to requests for comment.
Two years of drought pushed up prices of pulses such as chickpeas and black grams, which are a staple of Indian cuisine, in 2015 and forced New Delhi to offer duty-free imports, encouraging foreign and Indian traders who imported pulses to sell locally.
“The collusion by these companies led to higher prices of pulses,” one of the government sources said, adding that the CCI’s inquiry started three months ago.
The investigation will also assess whether the companies have continued their alleged collusion even after the prices of pulses stabilized in recent years, the source said.
IMPORT PRICES
The raids on five company offices in India’s financial capital began on Friday and were concluded on Saturday.
Antitrust officials collected evidence, including documents and e-mails, and questioned company officials during the raids, a second government source said.
Another source, an industry executive, told Reuters that CCI’s search involved going through company records at Glencore’s office in Mumbai, confirming it was part of the watchdog’s probe into accusations of fixing import prices.
The drought during 2015 wilted crops and exacerbated shortages of food such as protein-rich pulses and India, which consumes about 22 million tonnes of pulses annually, faced a shortfall of 7-8 million tonnes in 2015-16.
The CCI’s raids on commodities traders mark only its fourth such search operation in its near 10-year history. They can only be conducted with approval from a judge.
In October, the CCI raided the offices of global brewers such as Carlsberg and Anheuser Busch InBev and found e-mails which allegedly showed violations of Indian anti-trust laws. (https://reut.rs/2JeQKEs)
The brewing companies have pleaded leniency under a CCI program, Reuters has reported.
(Reporting by Aditya Kalra and Mayank Bhardwaj; Additional reporting by Rajendra Jadhav and Aditi Shah; Editing by Alexander Smith)
Copyright 2019 Thomson Reuters .

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Go On A Journey of Culinary Discovery This Ramadan @ WEIL Hotel Ipoh

Goodie Foodie Yu-Wei,Liew, Executive Director of WEIL Hotel (L) with Perak menteri Besar, Dato’ Seri Ahmad Faizal bin Azumu
Ipoh’s WEIL Hotel is inviting us to go on a meaning culinary journey with them during the month of Ramadan, by offering a delicious array of “buka puasa” delights. whole barbecued lamb Shawarma
Two distinctive Ramadan menus have been prepared by the culinary team. Served on rotation basis, go on this meaningful journey of discovering a diverse spread of signature Malaysian dishes from around the country. Wherever you hail from, you will surely enjoy a taste of “home” when you break fast at WEIL Hotel. popiah basah salad bar with dressing
Known as “Kembara Iftar”, signature items to be savoured include Whole Barbequed Lamb, satay, ikan bakar and shawarma, all from the eight action stalls that will be busy cooking up a storm for the entire month of Ramadan. pasta counter chicken tandoori
According to Assistant Food and Beverage Manager, T. Saravanan, guests are invited on a discovery of Malaysia’s best cuisine at Kembara Iftar that features a theme of Malaysia’s diverse cultural and historical influences that make our food so colourful and interesting. Indian paella rice with seafood itik rendang semer tilem
Each menu features more than 10 types of local salads, served with a selection of salted fish, crackers and sambal and four international salads. fried crab kam heong style aloo gobi
Meanwhile, among the main courses are a combination of cuisine from the three main ethnic groups: Malay, Chinese and Indian, with Sup Tulang Kambing being the highlight. sotong sambal petai lamb murtabak
Of course, what’s a Ramadan meal without Bubur Lambuk? Kembara Iftar’s Bubur Lambuk Ibunda is not to be missed! Just for your information, the hotel will be distributing this bubur lambuk for free to two mosques in Ipoh that are frequented by the less fortunate, to spread some cheer to them during this holy month. kerabu, tempe, pecal & more kuih-muih
Wrap up your buka puasa meal with something sweet from the dessert counter, with cakes,pastries, snacks and kuih-muih, to be washed down with the restaurant’s best seller, Teh Tarik. cut fruits ABC & ice cream counter
I hear you asking how much! Kembara Iftar Ramadan Buffet Dinner is priced at RM88 /adult, RM78 /senior and RM39 /child (5 years old and above). For more information or reservation, call WEIL Hotel at +605 208 2228 or email enquiries@weilhotel.com
WEIL Hotel Add: 292, Jalan Sultan Idris Shah, 30000 Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia. Tel: +605-208 2228
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Exclusive: Indian antitrust watchdog raids Glencore business, others over pulse prices – sources

Exclusive: Indian antitrust watchdog raids Glencore business, others over pulse prices – sources By Aditya Kalra and Mayank Bhardwaj FILE PHOTO: The logo of commodities trader Glencore is pictured in front of the company’s headquarters in Baar, Switzerland, July 18, 2017. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo More By Aditya Kalra and Mayank Bhardwaj NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India’s antitrust watchdog raided units of global commodities trader Glencore and two other firms in Mumbai on Saturday in an inquiry into alleged collusion on the price of pulses, four sources with knowledge of the raids told Reuters. More than 25 antitrust officials carried out the raids at the offices of local units of Glencore and Africa’s Export Trading Group, and India’s Edelweiss group which previously had a commodities business, two government sources told Reuters. The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has been investigating allegations that the companies formed a cartel to discuss the pricing of pulses while importing and selling them in the Indian market at higher prices in 2015 and 2016, when India faced an acute shortage, the sources said. A spokesman for Switzerland-based Glencore, Charles Watenphul, declined to comment, while India’s Edelweiss, which sold its commodities trading business in November 2016, and the Export Trading Group did not respond to requests for comment. Two years of drought pushed up prices of pulses such as chickpeas and black grams, which are a staple of Indian cuisine, in 2015 and forced New Delhi to offer duty-free imports, encouraging foreign and Indian traders who imported pulses to sell locally. “The collusion by these companies led to higher prices of pulses,” one of the government sources said, adding that the CCI’s inquiry started three months ago. The investigation will also assess whether the companies have continued their alleged collusion even after the prices of pulses stabilized in recent years, the source said. IMPORT PRICES The raids on five company offices in India’s financial capital began on Friday and were concluded on Saturday. Antitrust officials collected evidence, including documents and e-mails, and questioned company officials during the raids, a second government source said. Another source, an industry executive, told Reuters that CCI’s search involved going through company records at Glencore’s office in Mumbai, confirming it was part of the watchdog’s probe into accusations of fixing import prices. The drought during 2015 wilted crops and exacerbated shortages of food such as protein-rich pulses and India, which consumes about 22 million tonnes of pulses annually, faced a shortfall of 7-8 million tonnes in 2015-16. The CCI’s raids on commodities traders mark only its fourth such search operation in its near 10-year history. They can only be conducted with approval from a judge. In October, the CCI raided the offices of global brewers such as Carlsberg and Anheuser Busch InBev and found e-mails which allegedly showed violations of Indian anti-trust laws. (https://reut.rs/2JeQKEs) The brewing companies have pleaded leniency under a CCI programme, Reuters has reported. (Reporting by Aditya Kalra and Mayank Bhardwaj; Additional reporting by Rajendra Jadhav and Aditi Shah; Editing by Alexander Smith)

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Female Chefs Take Centre Stage at Black Sheep Restaurants

March 17, 2019
Hong Kong (Hong Kong SAR) – March 18, 2019 ( travelindex.com ) – While many observers bemoan the lack of female representation in the restaurant industry, one Hong Kong hospitality group is leading the charge and embracing the change. First and foremost, Black Sheep Restaurants is about the people in our team and the family we have created,” explains Syed Asim Hussain, co-founder of Black Sheep Restaurants. “If you look after your people, give them opportunities to grow and support them wherever possible, they will do the right thing for your guests.”
Discover the Top Restaurants for Fine Dining in Bangkok only at Top25Restaurants.com/Hong-Kong
Together with his partner, chef-trained Christopher Mark, the pair founded Black Sheep Restaurants with the intention of creating a dynamic community and telling compelling stories through food. “Community is our cornerstone and we are dedicated to ensuring our family flourishes. In less than seven years, we have grown our team to over 1,000 team members and half of them are women. While other restaurant groups struggle to achieve gender equality, or are reluctant to promote female chefs to senior positions, women are a driving creative force in our restaurants and leaders in their respective fields.”
Gisela Alesbrook “My recipes have been passed down the generations from my mother and grandmothers.” At the Wes Anderson-styled Hotal Colombo, Chef Gisela recreates the humble cuisine of her childhood in Sri Lanka, paying homage to her family’s treasured recipes and her native country’s vibrant street food culture. Of Dutch Burgher and Indian by heritage, Chef Gisela prides herself as being one of Black Sheep Restaurants’ very first hires.
Despite dabbling in a range of interests, from banking to lingerie design, Chef Gisela is happiest in the kitchen. In Hong Kong, she is excited to showcase her native culture and its underrepresented cuisine. Her dishes come with all the staple spices, colours and flavours you would expect in a local Sri Lankan eatery, presented with added finesse.
Lisette Magampon “The most important class is technique. A great chef is first a great technician, and that only comes through endless repetition.” Chef Lisette oversees Osteria Marzia, Black Sheep Restaurants’ coastal Italian restaurant. After a five-year stint at the renowned Gramercy Tavern in New York, Chef Lisette’s passion for Italian culinary began when she bought a one-way ticket to Italy determined to learn about its regional cuisines. After travelling the breadth of the country, she returned to New York to work as Sous Chef at Il Buco Alimentari e Vineria, a restaurant focused on the cuisine of Italy’s Umbria region.
One of the challenges of working in a male-dominated industry like F&B is that female chefs have to work twice as hard to prove themselves. She credits Philippe Bertineau, of Alain Ducasse’s acclaimed Midtown restaurant Benoit, and Jonathan Waxman, who pioneered Californian cuisine, for helping to shape her early career.
Discover the Top Restaurants for Fine Dining in Bangkok only at Top25Restaurants.com/Hong-Kong
Safia Osman “For any skill, take your time to learn, study and stay in a place long enough to understand. To learn pastry, make it better and prettier than yesterday.”
As the pastry connoisseur who helms The Bakery, Black Sheep Restaurants’ central pastry kitchen, Chef Safia grew up with cereal and pie, the latter becoming a distinguishing part of her culinary repertoire.
Dedicated to creating sweet delicacies, she names honey as her go-to ingredient for its ability to bring classic sweetness to desserts and enhance savoury dishes with a layer of complexity. Born to Somali-American parents, she developed her sweet tooth from an early age. One of her earliest memories is discovering a local breakfast snack, Injera, comprising a layer of stacked sweet crepes with honey.
With over 20 years of experience, Chef Safia has worked alongside such celebrated pastry chefs as Claudia Fleming, winner of the coveted James Beard Award. After leaving the US, she worked in Dubai before arriving in Hong Kong in 2016.
Angie Ford “Being able to be creative through food is extremely freeing.” For Chef Angie, cooking presents endless learning opportunities. The Executive Chef of Buenos Aires Polo Club, Black Sheep Restaurants’ Argentinian steakhouse, Angie started her culinary career helping out in the family kitchen at the age of 11. She grew up learning the different roles in a restaurant, from serving and bartending to managing before finally beginning her apprenticeship when she was 18. She is continuing a family tradition as her three sisters are currently pastry chefs.
A vocal advocate of ethically-raised meat, her menus at Buenos Aires Polo Club demonstrate her expertise and ability to prepare various cuts of steak from one specifically-reared breed, the Aberdeen Black Angus. Chef Angie competed in Iron Chef Canada, which she recalls as “a super stressful hour but also extremely rewarding”. Her advice for surviving in the pressure-cooker world of restaurants: “Be a positive force in the kitchen, and do not lose your cool.”
Yen Chan “Nobody is born as a chef, and it does not happen overnight. If you want to succeed, you need the right attitude.” For La Vache Tsim Sha Tsui’s Yen Chan, her hobby became a passion and eventually her career. After studying Culinary Arts and Design in Canada, she worked front of house for five years before taking up the challenge to venture into the kitchen. Aside from overcoming a language barrier, she had to familiarise herself with the frantic pace of working in a large-scale line kitchen.
With the goal of one day opening her own restaurant, she was inspired by a visit to a fifth-generation sushi bar in Tokyo, where the resident chef produced a handmade piece of sushi every two seconds. “Watching that level of expertise is inspiring. It reminds you of the level of dedication required to hone your craft.”
Charrinn (Noom) Singdaechakarn “Be a chef who never stops learning, and love what you do.” Head Chef of Soul Food Thai, Chef Noom has been mastering the cuisine of her homeland since she was 24. While studying in Sydney, she took on a part-time job working in the kitchen of a Thai restaurant. Her passion for cooking began as a child. Living in a garden house, her mother would grow fresh ingredients to incorporate into their meals. Her appreciation for authentic ingredients extends to Soul Food Thai where everything is made from scratch. Originally from Issan, the Northeastern province of Thailand, her go-to dish is noodle soup. Although it looks deceptively simple, it requires lots of ingredients and patience to prepare and perfect.
For Chef Noom, the most challenging part of Thai cuisine is mastering the knife skills. Her mentor, Chef Chaiwat, helped develop these skills by having her “julienne the kaffir lime leaf into hair-like strands”.
About Black Sheep Restaurants Niche, thought-provoking and story-driven, Black Sheep Restaurants is a Hong Kong-based hospitality group founded in 2012 by Syed Asim Hussain and Christopher Mark. Together they share decades of experience in hospitality and business development, along with a zest for travel and discovering dining subcultures.
Black Sheep Restaurants curates distinct dining experiences that tell a story about a particular time, place, culture or cuisine while celebrating the bounty of premium ingredients available both locally and from abroad. Always pushing boundaries, the group continues to expand rapidly within Hong Kong and beyond.
In December 2018, Syed Asim Hussain became the world’s youngest restaurateur to hold two Michelin stars when BELON and New Punjab Club were honoured with one Michelin star each. New Punjab Club is the world’s first Punjabi restaurant to be awarded a Michelin star.

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Female Chefs Take Centre Stage at Black Sheep Restaurants

March 17, 2019
Hong Kong (Hong Kong SAR) – March 18, 2019 ( travelindex.com ) – While many observers bemoan the lack of female representation in the restaurant industry, one Hong Kong hospitality group is leading the charge and embracing the change. First and foremost, Black Sheep Restaurants is about the people in our team and the family we have created,” explains Syed Asim Hussain, co-founder of Black Sheep Restaurants. “If you look after your people, give them opportunities to grow and support them wherever possible, they will do the right thing for your guests.”
Discover the Top Restaurants for Fine Dining in Bangkok only at Top25Restaurants.com/Hong-Kong
Together with his partner, chef-trained Christopher Mark, the pair founded Black Sheep Restaurants with the intention of creating a dynamic community and telling compelling stories through food. “Community is our cornerstone and we are dedicated to ensuring our family flourishes. In less than seven years, we have grown our team to over 1,000 team members and half of them are women. While other restaurant groups struggle to achieve gender equality, or are reluctant to promote female chefs to senior positions, women are a driving creative force in our restaurants and leaders in their respective fields.”
Gisela Alesbrook “My recipes have been passed down the generations from my mother and grandmothers.” At the Wes Anderson-styled Hotal Colombo, Chef Gisela recreates the humble cuisine of her childhood in Sri Lanka, paying homage to her family’s treasured recipes and her native country’s vibrant street food culture. Of Dutch Burgher and Indian by heritage, Chef Gisela prides herself as being one of Black Sheep Restaurants’ very first hires.
Despite dabbling in a range of interests, from banking to lingerie design, Chef Gisela is happiest in the kitchen. In Hong Kong, she is excited to showcase her native culture and its underrepresented cuisine. Her dishes come with all the staple spices, colours and flavours you would expect in a local Sri Lankan eatery, presented with added finesse.
Lisette Magampon “The most important class is technique. A great chef is first a great technician, and that only comes through endless repetition.” Chef Lisette oversees Osteria Marzia, Black Sheep Restaurants’ coastal Italian restaurant. After a five-year stint at the renowned Gramercy Tavern in New York, Chef Lisette’s passion for Italian culinary began when she bought a one-way ticket to Italy determined to learn about its regional cuisines. After travelling the breadth of the country, she returned to New York to work as Sous Chef at Il Buco Alimentari e Vineria, a restaurant focused on the cuisine of Italy’s Umbria region.
One of the challenges of working in a male-dominated industry like F&B is that female chefs have to work twice as hard to prove themselves. She credits Philippe Bertineau, of Alain Ducasse’s acclaimed Midtown restaurant Benoit, and Jonathan Waxman, who pioneered Californian cuisine, for helping to shape her early career.
Discover the Top Restaurants for Fine Dining in Bangkok only at Top25Restaurants.com/Hong-Kong
Safia Osman “For any skill, take your time to learn, study and stay in a place long enough to understand. To learn pastry, make it better and prettier than yesterday.”
As the pastry connoisseur who helms The Bakery, Black Sheep Restaurants’ central pastry kitchen, Chef Safia grew up with cereal and pie, the latter becoming a distinguishing part of her culinary repertoire.
Dedicated to creating sweet delicacies, she names honey as her go-to ingredient for its ability to bring classic sweetness to desserts and enhance savoury dishes with a layer of complexity. Born to Somali-American parents, she developed her sweet tooth from an early age. One of her earliest memories is discovering a local breakfast snack, Injera, comprising a layer of stacked sweet crepes with honey.
With over 20 years of experience, Chef Safia has worked alongside such celebrated pastry chefs as Claudia Fleming, winner of the coveted James Beard Award. After leaving the US, she worked in Dubai before arriving in Hong Kong in 2016.
Angie Ford “Being able to be creative through food is extremely freeing.” For Chef Angie, cooking presents endless learning opportunities. The Executive Chef of Buenos Aires Polo Club, Black Sheep Restaurants’ Argentinian steakhouse, Angie started her culinary career helping out in the family kitchen at the age of 11. She grew up learning the different roles in a restaurant, from serving and bartending to managing before finally beginning her apprenticeship when she was 18. She is continuing a family tradition as her three sisters are currently pastry chefs.
A vocal advocate of ethically-raised meat, her menus at Buenos Aires Polo Club demonstrate her expertise and ability to prepare various cuts of steak from one specifically-reared breed, the Aberdeen Black Angus. Chef Angie competed in Iron Chef Canada, which she recalls as “a super stressful hour but also extremely rewarding”. Her advice for surviving in the pressure-cooker world of restaurants: “Be a positive force in the kitchen, and do not lose your cool.”
Yen Chan “Nobody is born as a chef, and it does not happen overnight. If you want to succeed, you need the right attitude.” For La Vache Tsim Sha Tsui’s Yen Chan, her hobby became a passion and eventually her career. After studying Culinary Arts and Design in Canada, she worked front of house for five years before taking up the challenge to venture into the kitchen. Aside from overcoming a language barrier, she had to familiarise herself with the frantic pace of working in a large-scale line kitchen.
With the goal of one day opening her own restaurant, she was inspired by a visit to a fifth-generation sushi bar in Tokyo, where the resident chef produced a handmade piece of sushi every two seconds. “Watching that level of expertise is inspiring. It reminds you of the level of dedication required to hone your craft.”
Charrinn (Noom) Singdaechakarn “Be a chef who never stops learning, and love what you do.” Head Chef of Soul Food Thai, Chef Noom has been mastering the cuisine of her homeland since she was 24. While studying in Sydney, she took on a part-time job working in the kitchen of a Thai restaurant. Her passion for cooking began as a child. Living in a garden house, her mother would grow fresh ingredients to incorporate into their meals. Her appreciation for authentic ingredients extends to Soul Food Thai where everything is made from scratch. Originally from Issan, the Northeastern province of Thailand, her go-to dish is noodle soup. Although it looks deceptively simple, it requires lots of ingredients and patience to prepare and perfect.
For Chef Noom, the most challenging part of Thai cuisine is mastering the knife skills. Her mentor, Chef Chaiwat, helped develop these skills by having her “julienne the kaffir lime leaf into hair-like strands”.
About Black Sheep Restaurants Niche, thought-provoking and story-driven, Black Sheep Restaurants is a Hong Kong-based hospitality group founded in 2012 by Syed Asim Hussain and Christopher Mark. Together they share decades of experience in hospitality and business development, along with a zest for travel and discovering dining subcultures.
Black Sheep Restaurants curates distinct dining experiences that tell a story about a particular time, place, culture or cuisine while celebrating the bounty of premium ingredients available both locally and from abroad. Always pushing boundaries, the group continues to expand rapidly within Hong Kong and beyond.
In December 2018, Syed Asim Hussain became the world’s youngest restaurateur to hold two Michelin stars when BELON and New Punjab Club were honoured with one Michelin star each. New Punjab Club is the world’s first Punjabi restaurant to be awarded a Michelin star.

Read More…