Tuesday, January 03, 2006


Many years ago (exactly 55 years, 2 months and 4 torturous days ago) a little baby boy was born in a small village of Karnataka. His name was Puttanna. Puttanna was a chubby child with a distinct fondness for food. He held his first ever-greasy serving spoon at the tender age of two and his parent's just knew that he had a great future as a Cordon Bleu Chef.

At the tender age of six he chopped his first putrid onion. By age eight he was mixing masalas with his right hand while digging his nose with the left. By age twelve he could ambidextrously scratch his unmentionables with one hand while stirring the sambhar with another. He thus showed the qualities of a great cook at a very early age and by age 16 he was made an apprentice with the village wedding cook Ranganna !! On his 18th birthday he made his very first Rasam. Alas!!! Ranganna died soon after tasting the Rasam.

And thus Puttana was elevated to the status of the village wedding cook. It was a proud day indeed for his parents. Puttana soon became world famous in his village and much in demand as it was noticed that there was a marked fall in wedding attendees when word got out that Puttana would be the presiding chef!

Puttana soon got bored with the same old routine of a wedding cook, after all there were only so many dishes he could butcher er...master. So one day he bid farewell to his tearful parents and set out for namma Bengaluru to seeku his fortunu in a five star hotelu er...hotel. What happened after he landed in Bengaluru (erstwhile Bangalore) is hazy but some people say he was arrested for poisoning a wedding party and thus landed in the Bengaluru Central Jail. In jail he befriended the prison cook and became his assistant thus further polishing his cooking skills. Puttana was an instant hit with the jail authorities because he greatly reduced the prison food bills. The money thus saved could now be used to treat inmates of the mysterious gastric ailments that nearly killed and maimed quite a few inmates. It was said that during Puttan's term even hurly burly rowdy sheeters quaked in fear when the meal gong reverberated in the jail corridors. Prisoners had to be dragged to the dining hall and there were many cases of jail break attempts.

Soon physically taxing interrogation sessions became a cake walk in Bengaluru Police Stations. A bowl of Puttana’s best rasam if placed in front of the criminal would make him sing like a canary. Till date Amnesty International never found out how, many a prisoner died during interrogation. (No pathologist ever thought of looking for Puttanas signature bondas in the dead men's entrails and all such cases were filed as “Unexplained Phenomena.”)

Soon after Puttana’s jail term was over he came out and looked at the Bangalore skyline. He was impressed with the numerous glass structures housing IT companies. They looked more impressive than five star hotels to his untrained yes. He decided that after conquering the taste buds of prisoners he would now conquer the taste buds of people working in these glass structures. He soon established a company called Ganesh Enterprises (GE)( or “Gastro Enteritis” as it is known in our company).

Today GE proudly runs our cafeteria and is a standing testimony to the fact that “bad cooking never killed anybody..it just maims your taste buds for life”

GE Menu Card a.k.a. Choose your own suicide method.


Breakfast: Granite idlis, rancid sambhar and gunpowder chutney. (bring your own hammer and Fire Extinguisher)
Snacks: Ferocious Chilli Bhajji , tame coconut chutney. (guaranteed to give you an ulcer in one hour or your money back guarantee)
Lunch: Horrors!!!!
Evening Snack: Pakodas with ignorance-is-bliss fillings (curiosity killed many an employees appetite)


Breakfast: MRF Tyre like Dosa, baby poo colored vapid chutney and thinner-than-water sambhar ( MRF’s Envy, Puttanna’s Pride)
Snacks: Mortar Vadas with tomoto kichip or you may call it tomoto saas ( one part red sauce, 10 part potato paste) !
Lunch: Gulp!
Snack: Samoosas (Friday's stale chapathi filled with Thursday's Potato curry and deep fried in engine oil.)


Breakfast: Super Gluey Upma (toothpick absolutely FREE to dig out upma from roof of mouth)
Snacks: Puttana's Signature Bonda (buy one get one FREE on Wednesday, eat all you can FREE on other days.)
Lunch: O.H M.Y G.A.W.D !!!!
Evening Snacks: Yegg Sanveg, Chiss Sanveg, Vigitible Sanveg
( Yegg = butter and Egg Powder , Chiss = butter and the firm belief that you are actually having cheese, Vigitible = butter with a choice of very lifeless vegetables, ignore the caterpillar, he is friendly)

You guessed it, GE's credo is " We bring things to life!"


Breakfast: Dunlop Tyres like Puri and Potato Curry. (boiled potatoes in hot water, bring your own masala )
Snacks: Vigitible Cutlets* with tomoto kichip or tomoto saas ! ( *pop it right in, don’t dare to look what’s inside, Pray)
Lunch: Two deworming tablets please!
Evening Snacks: Pisssa, An exotic dish made with a white chapathi, tomoto poori (puree) topped with vigitables and a generous 3 mm coating of the best Italian chiss supplied by Guttihalli Bakery. (no additional charge for cockroach/lizard and other assorted animals)


Breakfast: Gelusil / Digene
Snacks: Gelusil / Digene
Lunch: Gelusil / Digene
Evening Snacks: Gelusil / Digene

Wash above mentioned delicacies down with Coffee that can be an excellent substitute for Weak Hydrochloric Acid and Tea that can also double up as hot water.

Saturday: Check into nearest detoxification clinic if you are still alive.


Unknown said...

Me first!!!
Our canteen seems like heaven...
Atleast the things stay dead in our food :-)

Dr. Pissed said...

akkan just miss .. thuu

Dr. Pissed said...

For like 5 minutes there, i actually thought the bangalore jail was called Puttana Agrahara Jail, but then i googled and after a lot of failed attempts, I finally figured out that its Parappana Agrahara Jail and not what i imagined it to be. I was shit, she is actually stating the truth and all about Puttana, but then crap.

Also, the correct spelling of Sanveg is SANVEG, not sandwich.

Thuu, i so wanted to beat that rockus fellow.

abhijit said...

That seems like a scene from my company canteen.

jal said...

woow in that case our canteen is like comparable to Le meredien... anyway, best of luck, the next time u need to go to the canteen...
btw... even if u seem to be exaggerating, things seem bad...

silverine said...

@rockus:PETA is quite proud of our canteen. No harm ever comes to any creature that wanders into GE ;)
@drpissed: Sad luck machcha! *hugs*.Puttana Agrahara Jail? Mebe they will rename it as he has done yeoman service to that great institution. It is said that the Puttana disarmed the inmates with his cooking! :))And correction to 'sandwich' carried out. We thought at least the bread would be safe since it is made by a bakery, but alas even the Gutihalli Bread has flavorings *sigh*
@Twinkle: LOL You survived to tell the tale. My taste buds have long departed to its heavenly abode:)) Thank you, your story was a killer. Poomanam is "Spring Sky'.It is reminiscent of a green meadow in spring and clear blue skies (sappy I know). My fav mallu song is also 'poomanam poothulanju or something like that.

silverine said...

@abhijit: Hi, nice to see you back :)Welcome fellow sufferer, mebe we can form an 'Association of Canteen Food Victims'! :))
@Jal:Believe me! Things are bad! My taste bus are dead and my stomach is on its last legs.You may soon read my obituary here :))

Praveen said...

great and innovative descriptions of the food you eat, it dosent make my mouth water though :)

Mind Curry said...

reminds me of my hostel..after the first few months of ge and typhoid and amoebiasis, we all got used to the hostel food. but then there was a new problem. during vacation, when we went home and had good clean home food, we ended up having loosies again! we figured that our system was so used to the "GE" menu, that it started rejecting the normal stuff!

Anonymous said...


Awwww You Poor Girl...I tell you what..May be when I am in Your Bengaluru I could take you & Friends Out to Madman Madhu's Shiok.It has to be one of the Bestest Far Eastern Cuisine place in South India atleast.:) Keep emm commin ..Mate :)

Admin said...

Don't you have feedbacks taken from the employees?

Gladtomeetin said...

:-(( Feeling sad for you !Get feedback from all other employees and push the caterers out of your company...

Gud Luck !

Anonymous said...

Lil off thread.
03 January, 2006
Blogging philosophy

This guy, Seth Godin, believes that a successful blog needs five elements:

1. Candour
2. Urgency
3. Timeliness
4. Pithiness
5. Controversy

He says: "Short and sweet, folks: If you can't be at least four of the five things listed above, please don't bother. People have a choice (4.5 million choices, in fact) and nobody is going to read your blog, link to your blog or quote your blog unless there's something in it for them."

This place definitely boasts all five ;)
Posted by secretdubai on 10:18 AM
I love reading your blogs.
But shorter posts are better.

Its my opinion.Its your blog and you can write however you want.


~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

Heyyyyyyy ......

very nice read !!!
Well , what about the other companies ? Is their "appetite-emptier " also by GE ???

Lizards for free ???? Waaaah !!! No wonder India is having an influx of foreigners !!!!

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

I have ur last post to catch up ... " PR in heaven " ... lemme do that now ...

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

btw , does Puttana knos abt this ;) ?

Just curious , you see ...

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...


Thatz the road to heaven ;)


And back from hell !!

The conclusion :
Hell and HEaven are the same
Depend on your path

Ok , i now think i better shut up ......
Am i making sense here ?

Anonymous said...

@anonymous: feeling a lil sheepish here as I totally mistook your comment and left a rather sharp comment. Apologies. Thank you and I guess you are right , the last two posts have wandered off a bit. Will try to keep it short.Thanks :)
@alexis: you are an inspiration! :)
@Praveen: LOL
@mindcurry: that's so true, even my cousins who survive on cafeteria and hotel food say the same thing :))
@Jaggu: I have heard so much about Shiok!
@aashik: Well...Puttanna was shown the door recently, but he got away with a lot since we have another caterer too.
@ammo: lets get together and wipe out the entire tribe of putannas =))
@anthonyand and gladtomeetin: Yes we have a 'catering commmitee' but due to the presence of another caterer Puttanna was ignored. I have tried to describe his cooking here.
p.s. gladtomeetin is such a sweet name. Luv it :)
@Deepa: All cos. go thru a Puttanna till they find a good caterer :)And hope Puttanna doesnt read this or I am history =))

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

i just put up a comment .. .waah !! madam .. u r quick ...

now to read the happy new year pic walla post ...
here i go

ജെയിംസ് ബ്രൈറ്റ് said...

'Another masterpiece'...If Iam borrowing the words from Alexis..!

Sujit said...

Hey.. a nice one.. comedy!!.. we too cribb about the mess that we have in the institute..... but people say.. the food we get here..is heaven compared to other educational institutes... so stopped cribbing!!.. and also.. once we eat outside food for say 2-3 a day or go out of station and come back to mess.. MESS seem to be great.. a long wanting.. so.. no cribbs!!..

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

ha ... i am clever here ....

i took the new year resolution not to take one .....

Wooo hooooo !!!!!

@ Sujit : but , methinks ur insti food is way better than a lotta insti foods ... do u still get icecream every sunday ?

Deepak said...

I know a couple of Puttana-clones in a few other cafeterias !
nice post

Anonymous said...

nxt time u cum 2 my cafe u r in 4 sumthin special ;)

wish u a very happy new year

Rahman said...

Here, instead of GE, its RKHS (Ramakrishna Hospitality Services) in my office... all other facts remain the same!!!

The best part is he serves the dreaded rice by measuring it... not one gram more or one gram less! And yellow colour water named as Rasam or Sambar or Dal depending on his wish to name it!

We drafted a letter with proof (pictures) of the food to our management(who have good home food) & a new caterer has come in on a trial basis... Indication that the torture is going to be over soon.

Jina said...

OMG..suddenly our mess is heaven to me....they serve atleast edible delicacies...mm..thanx for remindin..lemme count my blessings..

Jagan said...

man..this guy sounds like a hero to me ..my cooking experiments is stil on and this guy is going to be my ghuru ;)

Geo said...

Ha ha ha ha....
Somebody enjoying her cafeteria food very much ...

Lemme remind you about a young lady who fell ill sometime back and was forced to stay at home for a day or two. When she was treated by her mom with items like kashayams, thalams, syrups etc, she had pledged she would never ever criticize her cafeteria food again, if at all she gets back to office. :_D

N David said...

I want you to enquire if GE has a branch in Delhi. I have a feeling that the IIT mess is run by them, or do they have a secret society or something? One where they practice rituals and hide secrets inside layers of poori that future treasure hunters would unearth, (and still be equivalent to ceramic disks) to find the clues..... that is the only explanantion to why they make it unchewable..

silverine said...

@Deepa:That was a neat way to present the 'road to heaven and hell' hats off to your creativity ma'am!
@dreamslittle: I am blowled over by the 'masterpices' in your blog too:)
@Sujith: My college cafeteria served some yummy food too :)
@deppe: yes plenty of Putanna clones to creativ gastric havoc all around :))
@anonymous: Is the special something, 'you'? ;)
@1.168: That was a neat way to 'present' the facts to the management!
@ursjina: Yeah count your blessings while they last:)
@Jagan:No way are you gonna make Puttanna your Guru. We dont want any more puttana's in this world grrrrrr :))

Anonymous said...

@Geo:well..er..um..I have changed my mind :D Maybe another cold will reenthuse me to Puttanna's cooking =))
@KD: Yeah, these guys seem to have formed a secret society or have decided to keep uniform consistency of the food in all corners of the country!
And LOL on the observation... practice rituals and hide secrets inside layers of ceramic disc pooris that future treasure hunters would unearth! :))

Arti Honrao said...

When I need a smile ... I know where to go :)


silverine said...

@akansha: Thanks girl ! :)

quills said...

It reminds me of my hostel days where the wardens used to have fried fish and chicken kurma while we had to sit and work through the watery sambar, puttumavu (a combination of yesterday's puttu (steamcake) and day before's uppuma) and other delicacies that had all of us queuing up at the medicine cabinet on a daily basis.

Matter of Choice said...


having lived in hostels for 13 years of my life i know how bad caterers can be :)

the menu looked distinctly like the one i have had too. But me thinks u wrote this post as another PR exercise. Did u get a deal from Puttanna?? last heard all hostels in bangalore are queuing up at his place to hire him. Bad gal...so this is creative communications :)


Fleiger said...

Hmm.. wonder Puttanna has branches serving other companies too.

silverine said...

@quills:puttumavu?He must be Puttanna's brother LOL
@MoC:Deal my foot!!! I would rather make a deal with the Devil ;) (He eats well I heard from one of his unsuccessful clones) LOL
@Fleiger:I guess he does from the numerous complaints that my friends in other companies give me :))

monu said...

u should have mentined about u r lunch too [:d]

Eleventy Seven said...

I sit here shivering of a 102 Deg temp and a very very severe bodyache - laughing my ass off. People around me have already formed a cordon around me and are chuckling away whilst fighting who gets to scroll the page.
A request for making this a FWD has also been presented(and might have already been executed by this time). With your due permission I am definately sending it to all Bengalureans I know!

Thanks! Needed it :-)

silverine said...

@monu: I didn't want to puke while describing lunch and that's why I never mentioned it :))
@Saurabh: Glad you think this is worth forwarding!!! This was me ranting after I could take it no more :))Get well soon.

R R said...

oh my stomach hurts from laughing

thomas said...

The menu card is mind blowing! Total laugh riot. Juxtaposing this post with my post, mine looks shoddy.