Desiadda through the Month

Although no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start now and make a brand new ending. At desiadda, December was ecstatic. While we were transforming to cater to business orders, the demand for our products grew significantly. Throughout the month, there wasn’t a single day where we laid our butts to rest. As far as I remember – and I have an eidetic memory – there was a business order consignment to deliver roughly every alternate day, and we at desiadda successfully delivered each and every one of them to a happy customer! “No days off. I’m a Workaholic.”, everyone at the office seemed to chant.

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Our Structure in a Nutshell (Art by Adarsh Ramesh)

 

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The Miniature Wooden Palaces

The chaos all started when we received an order to deliver 50 Miniature Handmade Wooden ‘Mysore Palace Replicas’ for the New Year’s celebration at DRC Cinemas. Travel parkz placed orders for palaces, which we delivered in time and in good quality, which prompted them to place an order for 250 boxes. These orders posed more challenges than expected and took the team over 14 days to process and deliver. Some will be delivered even today. In between, impressed by the concept of the utility ‘Know Your Holiday’ Mug, they bought 20 of this eloquent design, the concept being – people plan holidays over coffee and holidays play a significant role in planning trips. The Mug however, ran a threadbare cliché even to this day in demand for holidays in the office!

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The Holiday List Print on the Mug

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The Qwinix T-Shirt Order

Although mathematical probability says otherwise, we scored an order from a tech startup, ‘Qwinix’ for their ‘Annual Bash Party’ (Pun Intended) and the Hackathon. Qwinix placed an order for 200 T-shirts which were served for under 12 hours, and if that was a feat in itself, we also custom designed and provided for 30 mementos, well finished and packed in a blindsiding 5 hours. It was exhausting, but nonetheless rewarding and most of all satiating.

SVYM (Swami Vivekananda Youth Movement) one of our earliest supporters, placed an order for 20 wooden ‘Dasara Ambaris’ and a few Mementos featuring a handcrafted bust of Swami Vivekananda, involving complex handcrafted intricate designs. This kind of work demands time, but Desiadda sourced magic to deliver these products right on time for the event ‘Swaraanubhuthi’ on 20th December.

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The Swaraanubhuthi Order for Mementos

Returning to our roots, we sourced an order for the SJCE Global Alumni meet. We delivered 30 desi white wood commemorative garlands, 30 shawls, 30 mementos, 50 in house designed photo collages celebrating the college, 50 printed mugs, and 50 bags. Through to the close of a month we were riding on a high of exciting orders running between days, and it all still seems dizzy.

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Delivery of the SJCE Global Alumni Order

 

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SJCE Global Alumni Meet Products

Somewhere between then and now desiadda was re-forming. We now had a viable business model. A feasible structure to support the market, we always wanted to. The market that has always been understated and undermined. We also served another order at SJCE for the ECE Faculty Development Program, for over 10 mementos, 60 Files, Notebooks, Key chains, and Pen stands, all of which were sourced from Desi handcrafts.

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SJCE ECE Faculty Development Program ‘desified’

Furthermore we received an order two days ago from Komfort Suites, for their  function “Hold it All”, and only yesterday did we furnish a 16″ Mysore Palace Replica for Rotary West Association. While I write, people about me are still packaging and finishing the products to be presented for Komfort Suites. And I only in awe am admiring the pace at which the all the accessories: Penstand, mobile phone stand, card holder and Pen are being packed.

As the year rushed to culminate itself, a quarter for desiadda also ended. We supplied for businesses throughout the quarter: a Mutual Fund Advisor at BNI Meet with tea coasters for gifting in October, Bulk orders for Bamboo Boxes from Vellore and also  Mementos and Pen stands to SJCE Ed Board for the Kannada Rajyotsava celebration in November, and December just took the tops off of us!

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Work Currently on for Komfort Suites

A tenuous idea that started operations in October, now has a firm ground. Most of all, December served as a month of reassurance. We expect a turnover of over 3 Lacs in December, and look forward to serve the desi market, in fact enlarge the market for these products. We have things lined up ahead, more orders, more businesses to cater to, more events to attend to, and more cities to cover. In particular, we look to expand and begin Bangalore operations, and cater to about 10 events in January to spur our new year into growth!

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Looking forward to another Monday at work!

Happy New Year to all of you, from all of us. Cheers!

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Palliative Care – Swaraanubhuthi

Palliative care is a multidisciplinary approach to specialised medical care for people with serious illnesses. It focuses on providing patients with relief from the symptoms, pain, physical stress, and mental stress of a serious illness—whatever the diagnosis.

The Swami Vivekananda Youth Movement‘s Palliative Care Unit has been involved in the service of over a hundred patients in Mysore and they want to expand their reach to other patients who are in need of support – an estimated 6000 people.

The following is a video which was shot by Adarsh Ramesh, Karthik Hegde, Manasa Rao along with the team at SVYM. The video also has Dr. R. Balasubramaniam, Founder & President SVYM, sharing his views with you.

In view of raising funds to cater to the needs of the patients, SVYM is organising a musical nite on December 20th at MMC Auditorium. You can contribute to the cause by buying the Donor Coupons at desiadda.in/swaraanubhuthi

Sweet Surrender

Divided by regions, religions, language and produce, food is the one entity that binds us all Indians. Indian food, with its array of ingredients and intoxicating aromas, is coveted around the world. The cuisine and its mix of heavy doses of spices like cardamom, cayenne, tamarind and other flavors like sweet, sour and spicy is sure to overwhelm one’s palate.

It would be safe to say that all Indians have a sweet tooth. Sweets are a big deal here for us. It’s not just a delicacy to treat the taste buds but also a manner to display and spread love, happiness and celebrate success. Starting at the birth of a child, at festivals, at get-togethers , at marriages,at every possible happy occasion, or just because they’re so irresistible and yummy, sweets are relished and even used for gifting to add sweetness and spread happiness  in the lives of our beloved ones.

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We admit that we here at desi adda too have a sweet tooth just like you! And because we want to spread the love and joy with all you wonderful customers, we are giving you *flat 10% discount* on these mouth watering sweets from the well renowned *Bombay Tiffanys Annexe* under consumables for any variety of sweet you pick! Time to get on a sugar rush!

The Tale of Nandi

His name was ‘Nandi’ – one who brings joy. He was to be immortal and unto this his father, Sage Shilada underwent sever penance for thousands of years. Sage Shilada – legend says – prayed for so long that his body was covered with termites that ate his flesh and formed their nests on him. Nonetheless, Shilada was redeemed sooner than later by Lord Shiva and was offered his boon, an immortal child.

However, when Nandi was seven years old, and was now well versed with all the sacred texts, ‘Varuna’ – the rain deity and ‘Mitra’ – the protector of natural order and regulation of the universe visited Shilada. They passed snarky comments, which riled Shilada up. ‘Nandi would die before he turned eight’, they said.

Nandi now prayed. He prayed until Shiva blessed him, and reinstated his immortality. It was now that Nandi became Shiva’s vahana, and assumed the more popular half-man-half-bull form, as both Shilada and Nandi went to Mount Kailash – Shiva’s abode to live.

The Sculpt below, in our hometown, is a giant 350 year old icon of him – the tenacious Nandi, majestically carved out of a single boulder in situ. desiadda, in its foundry has a similarly grandiose ‘Nandi’ albeit smaller. Our white wood Nandi sculpt is one of its kind, and reassures that in its making, many skilled hands have come in contact.

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Nandi – Sculpture at the Chamundi Hills, Mysore

A single piece of wood is chiseled into shape by one set of workmen, while the detailing is done by another group. These structures are then hand painted diligently by a separate group of men. Oil paints varnish the wood, and soak in the texture to provide a shiny finish. The gentle strokes of paint don’t find any unevenness in their thickness about the wood. The bright colours command attention.

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Hand Painted Nandi

We have 10% off on the aforementioned hand painted Nandi for only a month, on desiadda here: Hand Painted Nandi. Find your deal and Live India, celebrate our culture. Also worthy of note is that, we have FREE DELIVERY across India, on all products worth over INR 500.

 

All That is Kashmir

“This isn’t India. This is Kashmir.” It’s a statement that you’ll hear many people tell you, mostly local Kashmiris, expressing a popular belief that Kashmiris want to live in an independent state, free of India and Pakistan and their politics. But it also recognises a fundamental truth: Kashmir is culturally distinct from the rest of India.

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As the sun sets over the Himalayas, the lights of the city flicker below. And ancient fort is visible in the distance and songs from a dozen mosques echo in the brisk night air. Unlike any other state in India, Jammu and Kashmir has long been a majority Muslim place, with a language and culture that owe as much to Iran and Central Asia as they do to the Indian subcontinent. It has a multi-religious and multicultural history:
Many of the region’s mosques betray Buddhist architectural influences; Kashmiri carpet-making methods come from Shiite Persia; It’s Hindu temples once catered to a large Brahmin population.

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What also sets Kashmir apart is that it has been ruled – and formed – by Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu and Sikh leaders. When Independence came to India and Pakistan, Kashmir’s fate remained undecided. Hari Singh, the then Maharaja, wanted independence for Kashmir and resisted joining either side until conflict broke out.
Part of what makes Kashmir so special – apart from it’s breathtaking landscapes – is their unique language, which is different from what anyone in India or Pakistan speak. Koshur is spoken only in the Valley of Kashmir by the Kashmiri Pandits and Kashmiri Muslims. Cultural music and dance like Wanvun, Rouf, carpet and shawl weaving, and Koshur Sufiana (which involve musical instruments like the Santoor and Saz) form an important part of this Kashmiri culture.

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A Shikara is a distinctively Kashmiri vessel – a small, traditional wooden boat – which can be adapted for use as a tourist shuttle, a school bus, a flower shop and much more. In Kashmir’s heyday, hundreds, perhaps thousands of shikaras crisscross Dal Lake, shuttling Indian and foreign tourists. The main pleasure of these boats is to recline on the shikara sofa, and luxuriate in the serenity of the lake while taking in spectacular views through a curtained canopy.

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Another craft that’s unique to the Kashmiri is Pashmina wool. Pashmina wool is the material spun from the highest grade of cashmere wool, taken from Changpa goats, which are raised in Ladakh. It takes a huge amount of skill and practice to spin Pashmina wool because it is extremely thin and delicate and must be done by hand.
Every year, thousands of people visit Jammu and Kashmir: some of them for the sights, some for the snow, others for the rich culture and many more to visit the holy shrines of Vaishno Devi and Amarnath on their pilgrimage. It was reported that more than a million tourists visited Kashmir in 2011.

However, a million tourists who go there only to snap photos of themselves on Dal Lake with the Himalayas in the background will make some economic difference, but they’re not going to keep the Kashmiri culture alive. The only solution is to show visitors the Kashmiri way of life and make that the reason why people go there.

“In the end, our society will be defined not only by what we create, but by what we refuse to destroy.” ~ John Sawhill

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Rasmalai Recipe | Rossomalai

Ras malai or Rossomalai is a rich delicacy invented by the Bengali sweetmeat confectioner and businessman K.C. Das back in 1930. Since its invention, this creamy desert has sweetened the lives of people across India. The name ras malai comes from two words in Hindi: ras, meaning “juice”, and malai, meaning “cream”. This Bengali delicacy has been described as “a rich cheesecake without a crust”. Guided by today’s simple recipe, you can now make this mouthwatering dish at home!

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Rasmalai

 

Yields : 12 pieces

Total time for preparation : 30 mins

Ingredients:

  • 12 Pieces – Rasgulla
  • 1 Litre – Milk
  • 1/4 Cup – Sugar (more if required)
  • A Good Pinch – Saffron/Kesar
  • 2 tbsp – Chopped Cashewnuts
  • 2 tbsp – Sliced Almonds
  • 2 tbsp – Sliced Pistachios
  • 1/2 tsp – Fresh Cardamom powder

Method:

  1. To make rasmalai, you will need 12 to 15 Rasgullas. Either make them at home or you can buy the canned ones.

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2. Heat 1 litre milk in deep bottom pan, bring milk to good boil, reduce flame and boil milk until it becomes 3/4, keep stirring milk in regular interval.

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3. Take 2 tbsp of hot milk in a small bowl and add saffron strands, soak for 10-15 mins or until required. Meanwhile slices the dry fruits.

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4.Add sugar, cardamom powder, chopped dry fruits (you can keep aside little for garnishing) and simmer milk for 3-4 mins with regular stirring.

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5. Squeeze gently prepared Rasgulla to remove excess sugar syrup and add them to milk (if using canned Rasgulla, do same gently squeeze and add to milk).

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6. Simmer milk in slow flame for 2-3 mins after adding all the Rasgulla pieces, off flame and allow to cool completely. Refrigerate the Rasmalai for minimal of 3 hrs before serving.

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7. Garnish with dry fruits slivers if required.

Tips and Variations:

  • You can add pinch of yellow food color too, here it was achieved only with saffron.
  • If you are making Rasgulla to make Rasmalai, then prepare the Rasmalai milk and Rasgulla together to reduced cooking time.

Now that you’re done, what are you waiting for? Enjoy the delicious, home made goodness of Rasmalai!

 

Desi Diwali – Late by 10 days

A startup is a place where professional roles frequently crossover and where profiles are defined in terms of need of the hour. A CEO might take up the work of packing and delivery, a content writer might design posters, a designer might work the field and the R&D team might work on managing the accounts and finances. Desiadda too is one such startup.

This Diwali, the team at Desiadda collaborated with Project ReachOut ® and helped sell Diyas made at Rainbow Institute for Service and Education (RISE) to every household at Lakshmipuram. Our interns and employees, wearing black tees and a congenial smile, knocked on the doors of many a people and sold over 100 Diyas, the proceeds from which was donated to Project ReachOut ®.

The joy of meeting new people and being the delivery persons, rather the “deliverers of joy” was an experience worthwhile. Three hours of walking on the streets and interacting with over 80 people opened new horizons regarding the customer mindset and gave credence to our abilities as salesmen/women. Then, as tired bodies took precedence over invigorated spirits, the team called it a night.

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The following evening, team Desiadda visited a slum in Metagalli. The darkness was such that our tees appeared to be one with nature and our interns seemed like floating heads. We distributed the lamps, oil and wick among ourselves and we marched quickly towards the stream of tents that were lined adjacent to each other.

 

House after house we went and spoke to the people. We told them why we were there, then handed over the diyas and had them light it at their doorstep. Many kids from the area joined our team, marching alongside side and taking us to other households. The joy was immense and we felt elated to be a part of their community.

We across a musician who played harmonium and performed a song for us, kids merrily jumping around in joy, women sitting together and chatting at the common area – a place which was encircled by many tents and people walking about with no care in the world.

All the urgencies that we witness in the city – the rush to accelerate one’s vehicle before the signal goes yellow, the schedules like 10:50, 11:35 and 4:10…every last minute planned and organized giving no room to even breathe, and want to excessive material comfort, all of it vanished and the atmosphere seemed extremely peaceful. The essence of true Indianess, of freedom, of community and of unity was all too evident in that part of the city. A place where we went to help, but ended up on the receiver end.

We realized that Diwali couldn’t have been spent better and we resolved to visit newer parts of the city and by large the country in the days to come.

The experience, though satisfying was again tiring. So we went back to our abodes and called it a night, forgetting all about sharing our experience with you all.

A startup is a place where professional roles frequently crossover. This time, it so happened that no one ended up being responsible for sharing the photos with you and we conveniently forgot all about it. Anyway, guess it is never too late to share something nice and something invigorating. So, the story of the Adda Diwali.