Oh Gourd!

The poor humble Lauki (Bottle Gourd) is always at the receiving end of a lot of bashing by food lovers. One feels rather sorry for this poor vegetable. No one seems to like it – and across movies and television ads, it is always the subject of ridicule, regularly featuring in jokes and jibes about boring, unappetizing food.

 

Let’s put that myth to rest and restore the dignity of the Lauki. In fact, it is a very healthy vegetable and it doesn’t deserve such shoddy treatment.

 

Here’s a simple recipe that will turn the “boring” Lauki into a dish that will make your mouth water. And what is the ingredient that makes this transformation possible? Mustard Oil – lots of mustard oil!

 

Lip-smacking Lauki

 

INGREDIENTS:

Lauki (Bottle Gourd): 1 Kg (Peeled and cut into cubes)

Dried Lentil Cakes (Bari): 100 gram (Fried)

P Mark Mustard Oil: 3 Tablespoons/45 ml

Cumin Seeds (Jeera): 1 Teaspoon (5 gram)

Green chillies: 2-3 (Slit along the middle)

Onions: 2 (Chopped)

Ginger (Adrak): 2 Tablespoons/30 gram (Paste)

Turmeric (Haldi): 1 Teaspoon/5 gram (Powder)

Sugar: 1 Tablespoon/15 gram

Salt to taste

 

METHOD:

Take a wok (Kadhai) and pour the mustard oil into it. Heat the oil and temper with the Cumin seeds and the Green chillies. Next, add the Onions and fry them until they turn light brown.

 

Now add the Ginger paste, Turmeric powder and Salt; fry for half a minute or so. Then add the cubes of Lauki along with the sugar – and mix well. Now turn down the heat, cover the wok and let the mixture simmer till it is cooked.

 

Garnish the dish using the fried Lentil Cakes (Bari) after drying them. Serve hot.

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Happiness is not inside your Belly… it’s inside your Head

Boman Irani is a self-confessed foodie and he’s got good reasons for being one. Right from his early childhood to the present, Boman Irani has always been surrounded by great cooks – his grandmother, his mother and now his wife; so good food has always been a tradition in the Irani family, across generations.

 

However, being a celebrity in the movie industry means that one can’t always eat whatever one likes. One has to be fit; one has to stay in shape – or in Boman’s case, change shape in line with the demands of role. All of us have marvelled at Boman’s many onscreen avatars – from the paunchy Professor Virus in 3 Idiots to the lean, mean Vardaan in Don 2. He makes these amazing transformations by controlling his diet to get under the skin of his characters. By changing his face and shape, he actually becomes Professor Virus, Vardaan and all those other amazing characters that he has played over the years.

 

In this delightful video clip, Boman talks about how to eat right, how to enjoy your food and most importantly – he shares his grandfather’s technique for avoiding overeating. Very interesting! If you too are a member of the foodie club, don’t miss it!

 

In this video, Boman also talks about the stomach-mind connection: he emphasizes the importance of remaining in a happy frame of mind while eating. This helps you truly enjoy and relish the food you’re eating. He points out that if you’re happy inside your head, your heart and everything else will be fine.

The Voices of Our Customers

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One of our loyal customers, Mrs Surbhi Raina, who has grown up with P Mark Mustard Oil right from her childhood has written a wonderful consumer review in a leading consumer feedback website.

 

As a Brand, we have always been customer-centric and have listened attentively to the voices of our customers. That’s why we are truly gratified by her fulsome praise and would like to share it with all of you.

 

This is what Mrs Surbhi Raina has to say…

 

 

RICH HERITAGE, RICH TASTE

 

My earliest recollections are of a happy childhood spent in Srinagar. Particularly vivid are my memories of sitting in our huge sprawling kitchen while my grandmother cooked my favourite dishes. I clearly remember what I used to sit on – a tin of P Mark Mustard Oil.
I have grown up with the taste, the aroma and the gentle touch of this fantastic product. All the food in our house was cooked lovingly by my grandmother and my mother in P Mark. The delicious fragrances of the steaming dishes would draw me into the kitchen – hungry, fascinated and thrilled. To keep me away from the open fires, my grandmother would make me sit on a P Mark tin in one corner of the kitchen. And it wasn’t only the cooking – I also remember my mother massaging this oil vigorously all over my body before a bath. Even today, my skin (and hair) is rich and healthy – and I think I owe that to P Mark.
Just like my grandmother, my mother too was an amazing cook. And unlike my grandmother, my mother wrote all her recipes down in an old tattered diary. This diary exists even today, and is among my most treasured possessions. Leafing through the pages of this diary, one would notice that under the ingredients for each recipe, my mother never wrote “mustard oil” – she always specified: P Mark Mustard Oil.

 

During long stretches of my working life, I often found myself in cities in which P Mark was, sadly, not available. I would be compelled to prepare my recipes in some other brand of mustard oil – and they never tasted quite the same. It wasn’t a psychological problem; ask my husband: he too will confirm that something in the flavour had changed… and not in a good way.
Then I was transferred to Delhi – where I was delighted to find P Mark once again. It was truly a happy reunion! And soon my dishes sprang back to life. There it was: that endearing flavour, the seductive aroma and that rich thick texture.
People say I’m a great cook; they love my recipes and they always want to photocopy pages from the old diary. And I always tell them: remember… the magic ingredient is P Mark Mustard Oil.

 

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You can read the review here: http://www.mouthshut.com/review/P-Mark-Kachi-Ghani-Mustard-Oil-review-lqtmqruqprm

 

P Mark Mustard Oil

P Mark Mustard Oil

P Mark Mustard Oil: Eight Decades of Quality and Purity

P Mark Mustard Oil began its journey more than eighty years ago. Today, one looks back over the decades gone by with not just fond nostalgia but also a sense of justifiable pride. Think about it – how many brands from the early thirties are still around today? Not very many; in fact, way back in 1933 when we started our journey, there were very few home-grown, innately Indian brands around. The P Mark story is a lot more than just a tale of a commodity transforming into a brand. This is a story about constantly raising the bar, leveraging cutting-edge in-house R&D to create innovative and value-added products… and consistently aiming at taking the brand to the next level.

 

Our beginnings were small and humble. Starting out as a typical SME product, P Mark Mustard Oil emerged as the first mover in its segment, breaking away from a “commodity” identity and redefining its image as a branded FMCG product. Through a series of carefully planned initiatives, the brand expanded its portfolio, enhanced its packaging and maintained its leadership status across key North Indian markets.

 

As a part of this endeavour, the brand also pioneered the advent of mustard oil in mainstream advertising, appearing prominently in print, OOH and Below-The Line media vehicles, later breaking new ground by releasing a series of Pan-India television campaigns to take the brand – and mustard oil – to a new level.

 

Traditionally, on account of various historical reasons, mustard oil had been perceived as a “poor man’s oil”, mainly because of its availability through the Public Distribution System (PDS). The marketing and advertising initiatives of P Mark went a long way in transforming this image of mustard oil.

 

The new, refurbished image was further reinforced by mass media campaigns that advertised key innovations and value additions in mustard oil – through the launch of variants like India’s First Light Mustard Oil and India’s First Agmark and SGS Certified Organic Mustard Oil. In a dramatic development, leading cardiologists began advising their patients to switch to these variants as their primary cooking medium.

 

Puri Oil Mills Limited, the custodians of Brand P Mark, has always been proactive in responding to changing market scenarios and customer needs. As India’s population progressively became younger (by 2020, more than 50 percent of the country’s population will comprise youth and young adults), the brand decided that it needed to undergo a Rejuvenation Initiative to ensure that mustard oil remained relevant to a new, youthful audience.

 

To carry this out, a leading Design Architecture Consulting firm – Lopez Design – was appointed. The new architecture for Brand P Mark was decided on the basis of intensive research. To test the acceptance of the new brand identity, in-depth customer research and focus group discussions were carried out by a leading brand research organisation amongst consumers across the brand’s core markets.

P Mark Mustard Oil

 

The new face of Brand P Mark was unveiled using a celebrity brand ambassador. In a radical departure from conventional communication strategies, Brand P Mark decided against using a stereotypical female brand ambassador. Instead it chose the veteran character actor, BomanIrani, as its ambassador.

 

Leveraging its eight-decade long core competence in the domain of manufacturing mustard oil, P Mark has now unveiled a new communication platform positioning itself as ‘The Mustard Specialist’.

 

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The brand has recently extended its association with Boman Irani, and has produced and released a quirky new television commercial featuring Boman in a delightful avatar – a tabla maestro. The video uploaded on YouTube has already garnered more than 2.4 million views.

 

What is it that makes P Mark Mustard Oil “The Mustard Specialist”? Well, since 1933, Puri Oil Mills Limited has always been a single-product focussed manufacturer with a proven track record for consistent purity and quality – quality that has been recognized through the conferment of prestigious National and International Quality Awards. All these have enabled the brand to earn the unwavering trust of millions of consumers across generations.

 

The trust and loyalty of these valued consumers continues to spur P Mark onward and upward to new heights. The journey that began in 1933 continues even today. The Mustard Specialist surges on, taking Brand P Mark to the Next Level!

 

How Boman created the irascible ‘Profethor Viruth’

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One of the most memorable roles played by Boman Irani till date would definitely be that of Professor Virus in 3 Idiots. Ask any Hindi movie buff to name Boman’s top three characters – Professor Virus will always feature in that list.

 

Boman recalls a funny incident that took place when he met Javed Akhtar at an awards ceremony. Akhtar, who also has a pronounced lisp, playfully asked Boman if the lisping Professor Virus was actually a parody of himself (Akhtar). Boman said “No” – and he was being 100 percent truthful.

housefull 3-akshay-Boman

So was Boman actually copying anyone when he created the persona of Professor Virus? The answer is yes – he was, in fact, copying himself… as a child. Not many people know that little Boman had a lisp which made him very shy and embarrassed. Believe it or not, as a kid he began speaking only when he reached Class VII at school!

 

Today, when you see Boman in so many glib-talking roles with so many different accents – Punjabi (Lucky Singh, Lage Raho Munna Bhai), Gujarati (Batook Patel, Housefull 3), Goan (Oscar, Honeymoon Travels), etc – it’s hard to believe that you’re watching a person who had a speech defect as a child.

Boman Irani Housefull 3 - Snapshot from trailor7

But there’s more to Professor Virus than just a lisp. Remember that waddling walk of his? Boman says he “stole” that from the lovable doyen of advertising and theatre: Alyque Padamsee, whom he met when he did a short stint on the stage before moving to the big screen.

 

Right from the time he was a waiter at the Taj Hotel, and later while manning the sales counter at his family’s wafer shop Boman had always been a keen observer of human mannerisms and quirks. They became his stock-in-trade when he entered the acting profession. Even today, he often does a mix-and-match of real life people when he creates the numerous memorable characters he plays.

When Boman appeared in the television commercial for P Mark Mustard Oil (for which he is the brand ambassador), he had just finished shooting for Bhootnath Returns. He was still sporting the French beard. He seamlessly worked his new look into the brand message. Towards the end of the ad, the young housewife who he is interacting with suddenly recognizes him; she asks excitedly: “Aren’t you Boman Irani?” In reply, Boman points to his French beard, smiles and says: “New look”. He then goes on to relate his new look to the rebranded new pack that had just been launched at that time.

Boman Irani is a man of many talents… with many faces to match! That’s probably why, unlike many other character actors, he never gets stuck in stereotypes. After all, “Profethor Viruth” is anything but a stereotype!

Boman with Kayoze Irani who has shot the ad

Meet the Fit Foodie

P Mark Kachi Ghani Msuatrd OilBoman Irani readily admits to being a great foodie… he loves good food and he’s always been that way. A brief flashback to his childhood years reveals that he grew up in an area called Nagpada which had a reputation for delicious street food and was also home to some excellent traditional Irani restaurants. As he grew older, his foodie spirit grew more adventurous. He began exploring the many labyrinthine lanes and bye-lanes of Mumbai – discovering a mind-boggling array of culinary delights along the way. His childhood friends looked upon him as an expert on Mumbai street food. If ever these friends had any difficulty in deciding where to eat, they would always ask Boman – the expert foodie in their midst.

Meet the Fit Foodie

Many foodies tend to eat out because the food at home is unpalatable – you know, what with wives enforcing strict diets and evangelising the cause of various health foods and all that. Not so with Boman. As a child, home food was a treat because his grandmother was an excellent cook. And even today, home-cooked food continues to be just as delightful because his wife, Zenobia, has exceptional culinary skills. Not just a foodie… Boman admits that he’s always been a really lucky foodie!

However, in spite of his love for food, Boman knows the importance of balancing his epicurean indulgences with a sane mix of healthy eating and fitness. As a highly successful character actor, his lifestyle is characterised by long shifts, lots of travel in India and overseas, irregular meal timings and a significant amount of stress. Boman is fully aware that the only way to cope with all this is to eat right and stay fit.

 

One should not be deceived by Boman’s slightly rotund build. He’s as fit as a fiddle and hits the gym with a vengeance whenever the role requires a different body image. For his edgy, menacing role as Vardaan in Don 2, Boman worked with Shahrukh Khan’s personal trainer, Prashant Sawant, to lose the flab, tone his body up and add some muscles to his six-foot-three-inch frame. His daily workout included strenuous cardio, weights and circuit training. He switched to a high-protein low-carb diet – even skipping dinner and settling for protein shakes during his training period. Think back on that action scene in Don 2 – the one in the prison yard where Shahrukh Khan fights Boman, and you’ll realize how fit Boman looks in that scene.

Boman-Irani-foodie

The balance that Boman maintains between his love for good food and the need for fitness and healthy eating habits makes him an ideal brand ambassador for P Mark Mustard Oil. For thousands of years, mustard oil has represented the perfect blend of flavoursome cooking and healthy eating. The aspect of its health benefits was reiterated in a study conducted by the Harvard School of Medicine in collaboration with the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi and St John’s Medical College, Bangalore, and published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The study revealed that the regular use of mustard oil in one’s diet reduces the risk of Coronary Artery Disease by over 70 percent.

 

No other edible oil brand has placed as much trust and confidence in mustard oil as P Mark has. For more than eighty years, the brand has focussed single-mindedly on making the best mustard oil. While other edible oil manufacturers have dabbled in soya, rice bran, safflower, sunflower, palm and a mind-boggling array of other less healthy oils, P Mark has never wavered from its commitment to mustard oil. In fact, Puri Oil Mills Limited (the company that manufactures P Mark) has a vision to be acknowledged as “The last word in Mustard”.

For the Harvard School of Medicine, its discovery of the health benefits of mustard oil is a very recent one. However, for millions of Indians it is something they have known for several millennia – mustard oil has always been a part of their culinary habits, their age-old recipes and their Ayurvedic medicinal formulations. That’s why at P Mark, we’ve dedicated ourselves to mustard oil for more than eight long decades – with a deep sense of pride, unshakeable confidence and undying passion.